The Rise of Corporate America

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Since the end of the Civil War, corporations have taken the United States by storm; but, at what cost? As with any revolution, there are positive and negative effects. While Capitalism surged into urban America, family businesses struggled to survive, immigrants searched for "the American Dream," and farmers toiled into debt. However, this rise of industry did not prove to only benefit an elite few; many beneficial programs were launched as a result of this laborious time in history. While the United States is notorious for the indigenous start and success of the corporate world, its organization and regulation are the result of the greatest collaboration of the races, fueled by years of immoral oppression, the nation had ever had. Although the long-term benefits of this burgeon rise of the industry overshadow the short-term benefits, advantages erroneously aided in the construction of corporate monopolies. Many conveniences, such as the telephone, telegraph, and railroad system, were introduced in conjunction with expanding urban population. At the start of the rise of industry, laborers and farmers celebrated these advancements in society. As a result of these improvements in communication and transportation, dominating businesses were able to mass produce, transport with added ease and distance, thus, offering the consumer a cheaper, stable price. These benefits to the working class awarded the formation of corporations. Consequently, power shifted from interdependent communities to national markets, affecting urban and rural infrastructure and life. Because corporations prospered over family businesses, entire families were forced to work long hours in dangerous conditions performing unskilled labor. Although unhealthy, many workers claimed to be "satisfied with sixty hours a week," minimal time needed to pay for living expenses. Even with entire families working, including children as young as six years old, immigrant families, in particular, were unable...
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