LaborHistoryFebruary13 - Labor History Fordism and Business...

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Labor History February 13, 2008 Fordism and Business in the 1920’s I. Contours of the 1920’s a. Recession after the war b. Boom in productivity from 1922-1929 i. Wages increased as well, though not as quickly as productivity ii. Consumer Credit is established c. Pro-Business/State i. Drive against progressivism ii. Attempt to weaken bonds between labor and state iii. Yellow dog contract 1. Sign to say you wont join a union or you’ll join a business ran union iv. Conservative Pro business presidents during this time v. Supreme Court Decisions 1. Lochner v. New York (1905) and Bunting v. Oregon (1917)- supreme court recognized workers rights 2. Adkins v. Children’s Hospital (1923) a. Struck down a minimum wage law b. Blunted supreme courts previous activism on behalf of workers c. Why? Liberty of Contract. Contracts decided terms of employment- whatever deal you can strike, you get- very capitalist- cannot do collective contract II. Welfare Capitalism a. Labor question cannot be ignored: businesses try to “answer” it b.
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