Essay On Muckrakers

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With an increase in industrialization people migrate to the cities for the jobs available. The bosses of these companies were free to do whatever they desired since the government had a laissez-faire policy. This brought many problems since the bosses were corrupt, greedy and cared very little for the well being of their employees. Middle class Protestants who wanted to address and fix the corruption going on in society started to show up in the late nineteenth century, they became known as Progressives. Many progressives were journalists who wrote essays, books and articles that exposed the injustices and corruption who were called “muckrakers”. These muckrakers gained were published in magazines such as McClure’s and Collier’s, which is how many of them, gained fame. One of the most well known muckrakers is Ida Tarbell who wrote The History Of Standard Oil Company in 1904 which discussed the harsh tactics of John D. Rockefeller in order to become the only vendor of oil. Frank Norris also wrote about the monopoly of railroads in Octopus. These monopolies affected small businesses since they didn’t stand a chance against the giant industries, which is how monopolies eliminated the competition. This affected the economy since money was in the pockets of few. By having a monopoly theses bosses were able to control the price and production of their product. In Upton Sinclair’s novel, The Jungle, the meat packing industry was exposed. The meat pacing industry caused many cases of food poisoning in soldiers during the Spanish American War since the meat had been poorly preserved, chemically contaminated, and often times spoiled. This of course also affected the citizens in the city who were buying this meat. Not only were industrie... ... middle of paper ... ...g the power that voters had in both local and state politics. The initiative would let a voter suggest a law that they believed should be passed and would then be voted on at the election, the referendum said that “voter-propose public measures are voted upon”, and lastly recalls would let “voters remove an elected official from office through a ballot box”. The Seventeenth Amendment would be added to the constitution in 1913 that would grant the right to directly vote U.S. Senators. As seen the Progressives were successful in their goals of fixing corruption in the government. They were able to establish trust busting, to get rid monopolies. Also they were able to get legislations passed that gave the federal and state government the tools to protect consumers. In addition to this the income tax helped build government revenues and redistribute wealth.

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