Captains Of Industry Dbq Essay

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Although many citizens viewed capitalists as “Captains of Industry,” they can also, just as easily, be seen as “Robber Barons.” Even though railroads were beneficial to society, they were not without corruption, as shown by the Credit Mobilier scandal. This was a railroad company that paid itself huge sums of money for small railroad construction. In fact, it received twenty-three million dollars in profit. Moreover, the railroad industry could be seen as completely insincere and dishonest because of its monopoles. Another broader view of industry was that the poor was becoming more impoverished and the rich were gaining more fame. This is described in Henry George’s, Progress and Poverty, in 1879. “The wealthy class is becoming more wealthy; but the…show more content…
This [trust] resulted in the discharge of a large number of laborers who had to suffer in consequence . . . The most distressing feature of this war of the trusts is the fact that they control the articles which the plain people consume in their daily life” (Document E). Finally, the cruel punishment of the workers in the workplace is seen in the previously mentioned, “Concentration of Industry, and Machinery in the United States,” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. “They [the labor class] reproach the machine with exhausting the physical powers of the laborer; . . . [t]hey reproach it with demanding such continued attention that it enervates, and of leaving no respite to the laborer, through the continuity of its movement . . . They reproach the machine with degrading man by transforming him into a machine . . . [and] with diminishing the number of skilled workers, permitting . . . the substitution of unskilled workers and lowering the average level of wages” (Document G). Through all of these different factors of corrupt industries in America, capitalists could easily be seen as “Robber
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