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The Progressives Good Politics or Meddlesome Control?

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Presentation on theme: "The Progressives Good Politics or Meddlesome Control?"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Progressives Good Politics or Meddlesome Control?

2 Origins of the Progressives Problems associated with industrialization, immigration and urbanization Belief that these problems can be addressed and solved Belief that government is the agency to address these ills Increased use of scientific theory, formal education, expertise, and use of data

3 Who were progressives? Middle Class Civic Involvement, $, and Time Sympathy for the lower classes but not among them Educated Across geopolitical boundaries Across political parties Grassroots oriented Exposure of issues needing reform

4 Socialism = against political machines = against Trusts = against Consumers protections voting reforms working conditions (+ c hild labor and living Conservation womens rights Federal Reserve System Prohibition Income tax Progressive Reforms needed..

5 Social Progressive Reforms Local codes, state regulations Temperance (eventually national WCTU) Poverty, Disease Prostitution

6 Social Reformers Margaret Sanger – Educated urban poor about the benefits of family planning through birth control. Booker T Washington – Trade skills to earn a living W.E.B. DuBois – founder of NAACP Muckrakers – members of the press that investigated corruption in order to expose problems to the American people.

7 Muckrakers Magazines McClures Colliers Newspapers Books (Newspaper series collected into Books)

8 Exposing corruption Thomas Nast – exposed abuses of the NYC political machine called Tammany Hall and Boss Tweed – used political cartoons

9 Muckrakers Ida Tarbell (Standard Oil) Lincoln Steffens, The Shame of Cities Jacob Riis, How the Other Half Lives Thorstein Veblen, (Conspicuous Consumption) Upton Sinclair (The Jungle) "I aimed at the publics heart and by accident hit its stomach." *emotive, empathetic, short on policy*

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14 Prominent Local Progressives Welfare Services for the people Hiram Johnson, Governor of CA Pingree (DTW) Jones (TOL ) Utilities To regulate - Water, gas, electricity Hazen Pingree, Mayor of Detroit Golden Rule Jones - Toledo Woodrow Wilson, Governor of New Jersey

15 City Reforms Settlement houses – workers, professionals, club members could pressure for changes Jane Addams - created Hull House Women targeted slums, tenements, wages & hours, child labor, alcohol abuses and prostitution Prominent Local Progressives

16 Political Reforms start at state level move to federal 17 th Amendment – election of senators 1913 Direct Primary – LaFollette – gives voters more voice in government and limit the political bosses power. By 1916 only 3 states did not have a direct primary Initiative – citizens propose laws via petitioning, then placed on next election ballot Referendum – citizens demand a law be referred to voters for approval or rejection Recall – voters able to remove public officials from office

17 Economic Progressive Reforms Increased regulation of big business Stronger Anti-Trust Legislation Maximum Hours and Minimum Wage Workers Compensation (Job Injury) Worker Safety SAFETY, SAFETY, SAFETY Food, drugs, city streets, playgrounds, Emergence of more modern notion of childhood

18 Progressivism Goes National Cross Political Parties TR (Republican) Taft (Republican) Wilson (Democrat)

19 TR and the Square Deal Consumers Meat Inspection Act Pure Food and Drug Act Aldrich-Vreeland Act Labor Anthracite Coal Miner Strike Big Business Elkins and Heburn Acts Northern Securities Good Trust/Bad Trust Environment National Park Land MURM Hetch Hetchy Valley

20 Taft Presidency Consumers – Society Payne – Aldrich Tariff Act Childrens Bureau 16 th Amendment – (income tax) 17 th Amendment – (senate elections) Labor Created 35,000 postmasters and 20,00 skilled workers in the Navy under civil service protection Department of Commerce and Labor was divided into 2 departments 8-Hour workday for government employees Big Business Mann – Elkins Act 99 trust busts – prosecutions – including the sugar trust Environment Put more land into conservation than TR

21 Wilson – New Freedom Consumers Federal Reserve Bank Federal Trade Commission Labor Federal Farm Loan Board Clayton Anti-Trust Act Adamson Act – 8-Hour workday for RR workers Big Business Underwood Simmons Act (lowering tariffs to stop monopolies) Civil Liberties War Industries Board Committee on Public Information Espionage & Sedition Acts

22 Evaluation of Progressives Weaknesses of Reform Material progress of Americans weakened zeal of reformers Myriad of Progressive goals were often confusing and contradictory Opposition to Progressivism apparent as initiatives failed and courts struck down legislation Government remained mainly under the influence of business and industry WWI – use of government to create a just society lessens Accomplishments Trust-busting forced industrialists to notice public opinion Legislation gave federal and state government the tools to protect consumers Income tax helped build government revenues and redistribute wealth Challenged traditional institutions and approaches to domestic problems

23 Those not helped Little was done to help migrant farmers or renter farmers or nonunion workers Support of womens suffrage African Americans and Jim Crow segregation situations Imperialism policies to civilize underdeveloped nations Immigration restriction or literacy tests


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