It is a widely held view that World War II marked the end of the Great Depression. During four years from 1941 through 1945, the U.S. sent more than $50 billion worth of material to the Allied Forces. In this period, factories converted from civilian to war production, men went into the armed forces, and women went to work in the factories. By 1945, we had manufactured 80,000 airplanes, 2,500 warships, countless machine guns and munitions.
Is this WWII deficit spending as a cure for the Great Depression any different from proposed deficit spending and job creation today? Except that spending today is for constructive purposes with long-term benefits, such as infrastructure, rather than destructive purposes of war.
If it ended the Great Depression, why won’t it work today?