Musings of a Prairie Populist and Progressive

A photo of the real Ignatius Donnelly – founder of the People’s Party which later became the Populist Party.

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We were signed up to the Douglas and Main blog site today.  Here is the summary of us: — A group blogging about modern politics like its 1896.

This may be a higher compliment than it seems upon first glance.  The 1890’s until the 1920’s was a period of populist and progressive activism.  There was an outcry about the exploitation of workers and the common man that had never been heard before – maybe not even in the history of the world.

In my humble opinion, the reign of capitalism that preceded our current economic troubles has not been seen in this country since the populist era.  Hopefully, it will not take a major depression like that seen in the 1930’s to correct this political course.  I have hopes that the current administration will be part of the answer, rather than part of the problem…  Time will tell on that.

An excellent historical book that I would suggest is:

Risjord, N.K.  (2004).  Representative Americans:  Populists and progressives. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers:  Lanham, Maryland.

The book is a collection of sketches on Progressives and Populists of the late 19th and early 20th century.  Those covered range from Mother Jones to Margaret Sanger [this latter woman seemed to never have a shortage of boyfriends 🙂 ].

Some dissonance that is troubling to me stems from the fact that while true, the Rockerfellers’ and Vanderbilts’ as philanthropists were responsible for the University of Chicago (a high quality liberal academic institution) and Vanderbilt University, but in their roles as ubber capitalists fostered the work related deaths of many, many common men.  My dilemma: do these capitalists philanthropy excuse their earlier crimes?  I come down on the side of saying definitely not!

Please keep up the blogging that has marked the beginning of this fine site.

Iggy Donnelly…


Filed under Book Reviews, Media, Populists, Republicans, The Economy

6 responses to “Musings of a Prairie Populist and Progressive

  1. Good news! We’ll all be on the lookout for others who may want to discuss truth and not follow some crazy partisan marching order from either side!

    Speaking of questioning what is going on — do we have the fox watching the hen house? Here’s a good piece on the two men who are at the top in this administration’s economic team. Let’s not forget that President Obama asked us to keep him accountable!


    What Do They Know That We Don’t?

    “Lawrence Summers’ bullish economic sentiments helped send markets soaring at the end of last week. But even after assuming his role as the president’s top economic adviser in January, Summers seemed far more skeptical that the markets would recover any time soon, as evidenced by the only metric that really counts—his own personal cash. Specifically, in 2008 through early 2009, Summers stashed most of his liquid assets in tax-free municipal bonds—between $5 million and $25 million worth—leaving himself relatively little exposure to the stock market, a Daily Beast analysis of his recently released financial-disclosure report reveals…”

  2. I had hoped we might be linked in the sidebar at Douglas & Main, I’m disappointed!

  3. iggydonnelly

    I am not sure how that works in terms of time frame, or if it is policy to link to each blog. I am content to wait and see before reacting one or the other.

  4. iggydonnelly

    I am working on some posts for tomorrow since SEKanB will be working for “the man”. Congrats SEKanB, let us know how that goes.

  5. douglasandmain

    My bad on your missing from the D&M blog roll.
    In crossing over to the new site I sometimes, late at night usually, misplace a blog. I had put you on my google reader but had put also put you on the old, wrong, site. Mistake corrected.
    If it is any consolation I did the same thing to the blog of the professor I work for.
    My apologies.

  6. Pingback: No harm intended