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1-29-08 - Today we are looking at industrialization and...

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1-29-08 Today we are looking at industrialization and urbanization, the northeast, Chicago, Detroit. Next week we will look more broadly at political movements in the same time frame as well as some international movements of the same time frame. Industrialization- A movement in the northeast that was hard to exaggerate the importance of. The quality of life changed dramatically in 20 to 30 years. It went from a slower paced region with a heavy rural base, with manufacturing but on a limited scale, to a manufacturing power. Became the worst of what we think of urban life, low health care… also brought about some political changes. For many American’s it was too much too fast. 1865-1900, population of US more then doubles. Living in northern cities people literally felt crowded not just a thought. National wealth more then quintuples. Produces 2 billion dollars worth of goods, by 1900 13 billion worth of goods. By 1890’s we were the industrial leader of the world. That was a huge milestone. People realized there were disadvantages that came with this growth. 1. Factors encouraging growth- a. Cheap labor i. US had a good labor pool, the US had skilled labor, literate labor, could read and write and could do the important jobs, could fix the machinery and read the instructions, could work in banks. ii. Also have huge pool of unskilled laborers coming from abroad willing to work for almost anything because they are so desperate. b. Materials i. we have lots of rich natural resources that most nations in the world don’t have. The US far outweighs Great Britain here. ii. We have wood, we have rich sources of petroleum, we have coal/iron. No other nation really was so plentiful. c. Consumers i. need someone to buy. ii. Lots of new people in the country are a easy market. iii. The average consumer in the US is reasonably well off, so can buy d. Investors i. the US had a lot of capital, people who have money. ii. Banks from the Northeast, or private investors looking to invest. iii. Once the US showed strength abroad investors appeared. e. Govt. Open to international business- i. laissez-faire allowed trade at will ii. the government finally has to get involved and passes all sorts of laws that make big business possible. iii. Incorporation laws in the 1820’s 1830’s make it possible for people to join as a group and build a corporation. 1. The corporation can act as an individual. f. Limited Liability i. If there was a loss before this, an individual was responsible for all the losses.
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ii. Limited liability means you are only obligated for the specific amount you invest, not the total lost by a business. iii. The government wants to create an environment conducive to business, creates and environment/culture that the investor wants to be involved in.
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