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Did Antitrust Laws Affect John D. Rockefeller's Company-Standard Oil

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This investigation will scrutinize the question: To what extent did antitrust laws affect John D. Rockefeller’s company- Standard Oil? To analyze the effectiveness of the antitrust laws, the investigation will focus on the government policies and execution of said policies during the Gilded Age and the Progressive Era (1870-1920). The first source is a cartoon drawn by Horace Taylor for the September 25, 1899 issue of The Verdict named “What a Funny Little Government”. By 1890, Standard Oil dominated 90 percent of the oil industry, thus the publication date strengthens the value of the cartoon itself, since the close proximity enables for the cartoon to capture the perception of the cartoonist as well as the general public. Thus, the cartoon exemplifies John D. Rockefeller’s prominent involvement and control of the government, conveying a plutocracy- form of government governs by the wealthy. Rockefeller’s colossal size…show more content…
S. Pughe, published on February 27, 1901 in Puck magazine. The cartoon conveys the lack of government intervention, since John D. Rockefeller is portrayed as a king, not only controlling the oil industry but the railroad. By controlling the railroad, Rockefeller was capable of transporting oil at lower rates, enabling for cheaper prices for the consumer and thus running small business practices. The purpose of this cartoon is to show the lack of enforcement of the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890, allowing for John D. Rockefeller to control both the oil and railroad industries. This cartoon was published two years after the publication of “What a Funny Little Government” by Horace Taylor, displaying the discontent towards monopolies of many Americans during the early 20th century. However, the cartoon has bias and is limited to Horace Taylor perspective, since the cartoon was created during the time of the events, Horace Taylor lacks all the knowledge regarding Standard
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