Presentation on theme: "The Move Away from Laissez-faire"— Presentation transcript:
1 The Move Away from Laissez-faire Int 2 Cradle to the Grave
2 Ideology of Laissez-faire Describes government attitudes to the welfare of its people in the 19thCMost people accepted that poverty and hardship were not things the government could or should do anything aboutGovernments became increasingly prepared to become involved in social policyEg. Education Acts, Public Health Acts, Factory & Mines Acts
3 Why did so many believe in LF MONEY – government involvement = cost= taxes have to go up (middle classes having to pay more but the money not being spent on them)“Why should we help people who are too lazy to help themselves?”
4 Samuel Smiles Book called Self Help (1859) “Self help is the root of all genuine growth” = best way to avoid povertyBelieved that effort and positive thinking could make anything possibleEncouraged people to improve themselves through hard workLed to inventions, fortunes, Industrial Revolution
5 Self Help “Heaven helps those who help themselves” The spirit of self help constitutes the true source of national strength and vigourSmiles warned against governments helping people too muchBad = makes men helplessRole of governments should be very limited
6 Whatever is done for man or classes, to a certain extent takes away the stimulus and necessity of doing for themselves; and where men are subjected to over-guidance and over government, the inevitable tendency is to render them comparatively helpless…it is every day becoming more clearly understood, that the function of government is negative and restrictive, rather than positive and active.
7 Importance?Led to belief poverty could be beaten by hard work and positive thinking aloneSmiles said himself that any help given by government to the poor was useless because “no laws, however stringent, can make the idle industrious, the thriftless provident, or the drunken sober”Only way to escape poverty was through your efforts
8 Self HelpAverage worker could avoid poverty by working hard and saving some wagesSavings could be used whenever the worker was out of a job, or became unable to work because of illness or old ageDuty of the individual to look after themselvesThose that didn’t were either idle, unable or unwilling to save, or drunks
9 What Self Help was there? Worked for those who had a regular incomeMostly skilledCould save money in a number of places
10 The Co-operative Movement Friendly societiesPopular choice, benefits given out based on contributions made. By 1890’s 8,000,000 made a contribution. Also ran social events e.g. gala days, annual paradesPlaces to save if you hada regular incomeSavings BanksPopular with servants and those saving for their children. ‘Penny savings banks’ were aimed at the very poor who could only save very small amounts. Encouraged good habits and behaviourThe Co-operative MovementFormed by working class. Communities would get together to provide low cost food and services for themselves e.g. a grocery store or a funeral parlour
11 Critics Not everyone liked idea of self help Argued not everyone could save for a ‘rainy day’Henry Mayhew in his great study of London Labour and the London Poor (1861) identified that casual labourers were unable to save regularly because they did not have regular employmentLack of education and poor health also stopped many improving their livesNot possible for everybody to improve by positive thinking alone
12 SummarySelf help meant that people could escape poverty by saving money and living a sensible life. Such ideas were popularWorking class were encouraged to save through organisations like Friendly Societies and Savings BanksWorking class helped themselves by setting up co-operative stores to provide good food/services at a fair priceNot everyone believed that all poor people could save money for a ‘rainy day’
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