Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Business Administration



First Advisor

Daniel W. Kemper

Second Advisor

R. Patrick Akers

Third Advisor



This thesis will focus on the debate between liberal and conservative authors concerning the success or failure of the welfare state in the United States of America .

During the 1960's, government involvement expanded greatly through President Lyndon Johnson's great society programs . These programs were designed to alleviate poverty and promote self reliance amongst the poorest segments in society. Overall these programs were accepted by both the general populus and those in government as the morally "right" thing to do.

As time went by, and expenditures and involvement increased, debate surfaced as to how well these programs were doing in achieving there stated goals. The conservative argument claims that these programs have failed at there stated objectives and the answer to poverty is best suited in the private sector economy . The liberal argument claims that while these programs are not perfect, they are a much needed element in society and are best administered by the government.

The purpose of this research project is to determine the objectives of the welfare state and compare the arguments between conservative and liberal researchers.

It is hypothesized that the conservative argument that the welfare state has failed at its stated objectives is more solidly supported than the liberal argument claiming the success of the welfare state.

Results from the leading authors both conservative and liberal produced considerable evidence that the hypothesis be accepted and conclude that the welfare state, born from the great society programs of the 1960's , has failed at its stated objectives.

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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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