APT - APT 9 American Political Tradition, p. 267 to 305...

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APT 9 American Political Tradition, p. 267 to 305 Page Main Ideas 267 American society was becoming more materialistic and defined by greed. “Gentlemen” had to fit in to the new society defined by corporate greed and dirty politics. Charles Francis Adams asserts that all business tycoons are terrible people. 268 Politics were a way for people to use the power of business for their own gain, instead of businesses using them for their gain. Politicians made no significant contributions to social advancement because they were controlled by businessmen, who were only concerned with their own capitalistic enterprise. Politicians were regarded as “saloon- keepers” and “horse-car conductors”. 269 Theodore Roosevelt began his political career by joining the Jake Hess Republican Club. Unlike many others, Roosevelt wanted to actually serve the nation. Roosevelt believed that the business and commercial classes only care about money, and young men only care about making money. 270 Roosevelt did not like the rich, but he was not a socialist or helper of poor people. Roosevelt simply feared the “mob”, like labor unions and radicals. He was more like a soldier, who wanted Americans to live heroic lives. He admired cowboys, frontiersmen, soldiers, and navy heroes. 271 Roosevelt was strongly democratic, but he did not like materialism. Roosevelt felt physically inferior, because he had poor eyesight and had asthma as a child. 272 Roosevelt liked boxing, which cured his asthma. He liked to be in power, because his childhood with asthma had deprived him of control. He was always doing something, and loved to read and write. 273 Roosevelt’s popularity was mainly a result of his desire to maintain strong control. In Roosevelt’s time, the American population was split between the materialistic class
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and the populist “radical” class. 274 Roosevelt loved rough aggression. He lived in the Bad Lands (North Dakota), which led him to believe that Indians are vicious and should be killed. 275 Roosevelt loved a good fight, which is why he organized the Rough Riders for the Spanish-American war. He loved the prospect of war in general. 276 Roosevelt was strongly expansionist, and believed in the authority of the military. He supported a war over Cuba because he would a) Be liberating Cubans and removing European domination b) Give Americans a sense of pride and accomplishment 277 Rich people were against a war with Cuba because they feared it would upset business. However, Roosevelt hated commercial interests, and urged an aggressive war. He formed the Rough Riders, a volunteer cavalry regiment, which allowed him to fulfill his thirst for adventure and bloodshed. 278
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This note was uploaded on 08/31/2010 for the course HIST 45213 taught by Professor Platt during the Spring '10 term at Berkeley.

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APT - APT 9 American Political Tradition, p. 267 to 305...

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