The End Of Affluence Essay Research Paper

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The End Of Affluence Essay, Research Paper The End of Affluence As the first European settlers arrived in America, ideas of wealth and prosperity were fully implanted in their minds. These ideas soon turned into reality, and the United States dominated the global economy up until the post World War II years. In this paper, from the Book The End of Affluence by Jeffery Madrick, we will discuss how America has gone from domination of the economic market , to just barely hanging on, and the many roads both good and bad that it took. In the 1800?s a young historian by the name of Frederick Jackson Turner proclaimed that once Americas land had been purchased and fully cultivated, the deterioration of America would begin. Jackson was not alone in thinking this, many of his peers

and colleagues had the same views and beliefs, but were proven wrong with the introduction of the Industrial Revolution. This new era introduced an abundant amount of shortcuts in the area labor and labor saving devices. The introduction of these devices meant that a company could now save on salaries, but still increase productivity. The results of this new way of business were evident, the years between 1790 and 1807 showed American exports rising from 20 million to 108 million exported goods a year. The increase in exported goods was not only due to the new inventions, but also the high tariffs placed on imports, giving America a trade surplus. This increase in trade not only brought about wealth and economic growth, but also revolutionized inventions. One of the largest

examples, is the introduction of the railroad, and the tremendous effect it had on the trade of goods. This revolutionary invention enabled the transportation of goods to become quicker, and opened new markets. The ability to transport goods quickly also returned a quicker profit enabling the seller to roll his money over into other items. This new and speedier cycle of buying and selling strengthened the American economy even more, allowing the U.S. to have an enormous trade surplus. The railroad was not the only major invention aiding prosperity. The Cotton Gin was another invention that revolutionized the way work was accomplished. This machine separated cotton fibers from seeds speeding labor 2 to 3 times of what it use to take. The introduction of these machines were

effective labor saving devices, but unfortunately with every action there must have a reaction. This reaction came in the form of unemployment. Unemployment was not a new issue to the U.S., but it was one that became widespread and rampant. The introduction of new inventions such as the cotton gin relieved thousands of workers from their jobs and drove them into unemployment. This new state of unemployment began to weaken the economy, and with the beginning of a recession, complicated matters further. These complicated issues brought the U.S economy from a small-scale recession, into a large-scale recession. The introduction of this recession, lasted until the beginning of World War I, where it slowly returned to production standards, and then quickly went into a depression in

the 1930?s, known as the great depression. This economic condition would continue to rise and fall until World War II, where the destruction of Japan and Europe opened new markets for the U.S. In relations to the economy, World War II presented itself as a savior, in the way that government placed great demands on the market, and thus in turn raised productivity rates to a record high. These production rates did not cease with the end of the war, but instead kept on climbing, due to the destruction of Europe and Japan, leaving the global market open for U.S. business. These happy times only lasted until the early 1970?s when the introduction of the Oil Embargo took effect, and the crippling of Americas productivity and economic rates began. The enactment of the embargo was not