The series is finally catching up with our times…we have been through the wars, the healings, the government and the failures of the people….now we enter into what has been called the “progressive era”…..The Progressive Era is a period of widespread social activism and political reform across the United States that spanned from the 1890s to the 1920s. The main objectives of the Progressive movement were eliminating problems caused by industrialization, urbanization, immigration, and political corruption. (not much has changed, huh?)
What started the “Progressive Era” was the industrialization of the world…..and let me throw a little simple history at you first…..
The Industrial Revolution brought about bigger and better problems and solutions……
Part 20 of “American History for Truthdiggers.”
The Gilded Age. The American Industrial Revolution. The Progressive Era. Call it what you will, but one salient (Dickensian) fact about this period endures: It was the best of times, it was worst of times—depending on one’s point of view. Industrialization brought immense wealth for some and crippling poverty for others. Mass production might result in savings for the consumer, but working wages remained low. The boom-and-bust cycle of laissez-faire capitalism was in full swing, resulting in national banking panics and, from 1893 to 1897, the worst financial depression up to that point in the country’s history.
The key story of this era revolves around various attempts—by rural farmers and urban workers, by women and blacks, Republicans and Democrats, Populists, Progressives and even socialists—to mitigate the excesses of industrialized American capitalism. It would not prove to be an easy task, and, one could cogently argue, it is a task Americans still grapple with. The two-party system nearly fell apart in this period because neither major political brand seemed to have a viable answer to the key question of day: how to maintain peace and the basic standard of living during a time of massive industrial growth and rising economic inequality. It is a question familiar to supporters of Donald Trump and supporters of Bernie Sanders.
Plus with the industrialization comes the need for more resources and that need drives the necessity for armed conflict.