Changes in The
Impact of the auto.
Transforms the U.S. Spawns other industries. Roads are surfaced.
Changes everyday lives: access to work, vacation choices, dating
habits. Finance capitalists are dependent on banks, but Henry Ford
is self-financing. Ford’s dark side: acts brutally against unions,
is a vicious anti-Semite.
Movies and the coming of sound in the 1927 "Jazz Singer," as a
great escape. The radio opens national and international
Baseball as the national sport. The "dead ball" era in the first 2
decades. Ty Cobb as sports hero but also as psychopath. The
notorious "reserve clause" contracts. The Black Sox Scandal of
1919. Revival of baseball by Babe Ruth into a slugger's game where
the ball is harder. Babe Ruth's hidden dark side.
Combination of heroes.
There is Henry Ford, Charles Lindbergh, Babe Ruth, but also, Benito
Mussolini who thwarts radicals and who represents order.
President Warren G. Harding
is weak and a failure, but has capable aides. The Teapot Dome
Scandal seems tame in the scope of today's scandals. A nicer guy
than President Wilson, he pardons Eugene Debbs from prison where he
was sent for opposing the war. He becomes ill and dies in 1923.
with limited ability, becomes president after Harding dies. He runs
in 1924 in his own right and is elected. He vetoes a farm relief
bill twice seemingly uncaring that farmers are in great need.
is elected in 1928. The Stock Market crash in October 1929. It is
a decade of enormous monopolistic profits, fueling abundant
speculative ventures. The real estate bubble bursts. Stock Market
speculation, with buying on margin, continues so long as stock
prices rise. Some insiders become concerned about the situation and
start selling, causing prices to nosedive leading to the crash. The
crash does not cause the Depression. At the time 2/3 of the people
are living below subsistence level, lacking consumer value (aside
from their own plight), and in turn, the market is lacking.