Assessing the Attlee government

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Assessing Attlee's Government
Achievements:
Nationalisation programme: no attempt to nationalise major profit making business apart
from steel, based on helping industries that were struggling
Creation of the welfare state
Convinced the USA for the need for financial assistance (Marshall plan)
Indian independence
Major housing programme
Formation of NATO
Britain became a nuclear power
Hostility to the USSR during the cold war
Criticisms:
Half-hearted socialistic measures
Over reliance on USA economically and militarily=locked into support for the cold war= lost its
freedom of action in foreign affairs
Britain's industrial base was neither modernized nor reformed
Little investment into the infrastructure of Britain
Focused more on social welfare than industry= not ready or able to turn itself into a major
manufacturing post war economy
Welfare was expensive at a time of economic bankruptcy= had to borrow= saddled with
debt & economic growth was slow
NHS benefited the middle class more than most needy since the best doctor tended to be in
more affluent areas and their service was free
The poorest were most hit by the introduction of prescription charges

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