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Wilsons policy of progressivism was based on his desire to remove inequality in society based on wealth, to the extent that

American would become a land where there were no special privileges ...{where Americans] will come into a new era of American greatness and American liberty.... He oversaw the introduction of the farmers loan bank, an 8 hour working day for railroad workers, the child labour act, the Anti-Trust Act, currency and bank reform (Federal Reserve Act, 1913), Electoral Reform Bill, factory inspection laws, corrupt practices Act, tariff reforms (the Underwood Bill, 1913) improved access to education and growth in the union movement, to the extent that he could observe: We are witnessing...a reawakening of sober public opinion, a revival of the power of the people, the beginning of an age in which democracy was set up in America Freedom for the government to act without special interest groups trying to influence it. Implicit in Wilsons approach to progressivism was the belief that inequality could be addressed through appropriate encouragement Freedom of opportunity for all Americans. Also upheld importance of mediation as a means of avoiding open conflict. His approach to progressivism was severely undermined by the War, during which the carrot approach was replaced by the coercive stick strategy. Freedom remained possible, but only for those who could be identified as 100% American. Espionage Act (1917) compromised his overtly democratic approach, with not only germans but other European immigrants to the us coming under suspicion of illegal activity... the removal of mailing priveleges to dissenting groups. The Attorney General granted quasi police powers to the American Protection League (which became the FBI). The Sedition Act (1918) prohibited any disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language about the form of government of the US or the Constitution of the US, the flag of the US or the uniform of the Army or Navy. Passports were refused to those socialists wishing to participate in the Stockholm Second International. The administration oversaw the rounding up and deportation of leftist immigrants (the red scare). They took over entire sections of the economy, for example ship building, the provision of loans... Many progressivists had traditionally supported disarmament, a system of international arbitration and avoidance of war at all costs. In contradiction to this approach to international relations, his actions after the commencement of the war focused on military preparedness, through the Army Bill and the Navy Bill... Promotion of monopolies... He campaigned for increased taxes to pay for military hardware etc, (i.e. the people would pay) as opposed to borrowing... The War Industries Board coordinated manufacturing in such a way that it set prices at levels that ensured profits and encouraged production, thereby perverting (superceding) the anti-trust acts established earlier in his administration. Thus, the war significantly perverted the cause of Wilsons progressivism.

How has Wilsons legacy evolved? Had Wilson died in 1919, it is quite possible the Wilson would have been remembered for his pivotal role in the post War peace process. Perhaps the Senate might have ratified the Versailles treaty. However, by 1925 his vision for an American led League of Nations and a transformed world order which had the US at its centre was looking outmoded and out of touch with reality. Instead, the Treaty of Versailles promoted a political landscape that promised more of the policies that had led to the war.... Wilsons diplomatic skills were inadequate, with Keynes storming away from the conference in disgust at what Wilson let LG and CL impose upon Europe and the rest of the world. In the meantime, the Jazz Age took hold in the US. Epitomised in The Great Gatsby, it was an era of both great liberalism in terms of behaviour... and of extreme conservatism, reflected in the prohibition movement and biblical literalism. The dissolutioned population on both sides moved quickly from mourning Wilsons death to blaming him for Americas involvement in the war. The stock market crash and subsequent depression undermined Wilsons views on capitalism and big business and the impending war in Europe suggested to many that an isolationist approach to US involvement in world affairs would have been more appropriate than his interventionist strategies. Furthermore, the League of Nations was a failure... All was not lost, with Roosevelt ultimately proposing a new version of Wilsons League of Nations (which ultimately became the United Nations), that was built on the Wilsonian principles of peace as the responsibility of all nations, collective action as the best protection against aggression and the importance of self-government. Whilst many historians would argue that the UN was a failure, it nonetheless.... One can argue that despite the negatives attached to Wilsons legacy, he was nonetheless accurate in predicting that America would ultimately be provincials no longer.