Deregulation v. Regulation

Arguments made by individuals like McCain highlight the powers of the government to regulate. McCain approached the idea of regulation, as to not being limited to federal regulation. In fact, it is interesting the approach McCain took when it came to internet. He decided to deregulate, yes this is no typo. He decided to deregulate internet broadband, because interference with market forces is not limited.

McCain as senator worked for almosta decade to deregulate the marketplace to give it he freedom to grow and flourish, examples of this are rules to deregulate insurance and banking industries. His reasoning for this was that it would lead to a healthier and stronger economy.



Multiculturalism: The Melting pot effect

Multiculturalism is a strong part of American society today, but this identity has been a part of American history since the 1900’s. Considering the facts, yes America did have its share on racism, but today proudly considers itself the land of equal opportunity irrespective of culture and place. Immigrant culture, minority groups and different languages, metaphorically speaking makes the U.S. a “melting pot.” An influx of Hispanics and Asians led to increasing demands from other minority groups already staying in the nation, thus leading to the period of civil rights movements.

The start of multiculturalism goes as far back to the 1950’s. This movement entertained issues like discrimination, inequality and oppression. Social recognition further encouraged the idea of America being a plural society, with many different cultures and people from different socio-economic backgrounds. Multiculturalism, was not however always welcomed with open arms. Earlier on critics did not allow it to become official policy, but today it seems as if we are working to maintain or better this policy to look outward to other cultures by supporting and welcoming people from other countries to come get an education and work  in the U.S.


Sounds of Anti-war

The 60’s was a time of social revolution and saw a rise in protest. This protest contributed to a large anti-war movement also. People between the ages of 18 and 25 started to influence new sounds, music genres and music content. Hopeful protest songs such as John Lenin’s, “Give peace a chance” invited an anthem for people to still believe and fight for peace, instead of war. This was a song which promoted a solution rather than reiterating the conflict at hand.

The fashion of  using music to reach out to the masses a common opinion, was not limited to 60’s. It can also be seen post 9/11. The song “Time will Tell” by Redhill is an anti-war protest song for Afghanistan. It describes the environment on the streets of the war struck country, and shares the stories of  scared children running on the streets. These innocents are victim to violence encouraged by war. This song in comparison to the other works more to illustrate an image of war and death, whereas the other provides a more positive outlook on finding a solution. But both represent an opinion which seeks to end a reign of power over a group which may in fact be weaker.


Threat of Nuclear War


The fear of a nuclear war existed in the world under JFK’s presidency in the United States. However he was also the reason the world was saved from such a threat. Both the United States and Cuba were ready to use nuclear weapons in battlefield. The arms race exaggerated the access of the nuclear weapons both in the U.S. and the Soviet Union. Khruschev’s plan to place missiles in Cuba, directing at the U.S. initiated circumstances that led to the Cuban Missile Crisis. What seems to have relieved the conflict from both sides was the constant communication between the two countries. The back and forth dialogue between Khrushchev and Kennedy via letters, helped to come to an agreement to dismantle nuclear weapons in Cuba and bring them back to the Soviet Union if the U.S. promised to not invade Cuba. Later it was also suggested by Khrushchev that the U.S. also dismantle their missiles in Turkey.


Rosie the Riveter

A new group of working women developed in the United States during WWII. Women worked prior to the war also, but they were more commonly of lower economic status and minorities. The war broke the cultural labor divide which existed in society, women were no longer limited to working at home and men outside. Women joined the workforce more and more as the need of labor increased and men went off to war. This led to more and more women taking on the role of temporary labor force in war industries.

In order to reach out to a larger community of women, the government launched propaganda campaigns so sell the need and importance of women in industry. This tactic created an image of a “working gal” called Rosie the Riveter. She was the ideal image of an American woman and worker. Her example reached out to women regardless of their age, class and race. Women boldly took on factory jobs, leaving their old jobs behind in order to complete the new demand for labor.


Containing Communism

Spreading American values and culture has always been the goal of the nation since the very beginning of  World War I. This interest in spreading democracy and later on encouraging a capatilistic world, helped to fuel both WWII and the Cold War. In this attempt to make the world more safe for democracy to exist, the U.S. started its own battle with communism. Additional efforts extended a helping hand to European nations which desperately needed the help after falling apart post Cold War.  Examples supporting this are the Truman Doctrine and the Marshall Plan. This informally changed American foregin policy in regrard to the U.S.S.R. No longer was the U.S. trying to build relations with the nation or suggest friendship (detente), but rather preferred a policy of containment of the U.S.S.R’s expansion.

How did the Cold War start? Who started it and for what reason it was fought are all questions which are important, but can all pretty much be answered by one word: containment. The fear of the spread of communism as the U.S.S.R expanded posed a direct threat to the U.S. In accordance with American ideals and capitalism, a world with safe choice of communism would possibly even create an uproar in the U.S. as well. In order to prevent this from happening, American foreign policy in Europe changed quickly.


FDR to the rescue.

The country was facing an economic depression and they needed to be saved from the failed national policies attempted during the Hoover administration. As if things could not get worse, three weeks into taking office, the country was hit with a banking crisis. People raced to the banks to withdraw money and slowly banks were running out of money! A national bank holiday was declared and all banks were closed to be examined. Only the financially sound banks were given money by the government to reopen.

In order to aid citizens in this time of distress, FDR implemented the New Deal. This created jobs for people building city/state infrastructure. Soon the country would get back on its two feet. In addition, a new program called Social Security helped people in old age. This program yielded benefits after retirement. Last but not least, who can forget the discomfort many Americans experienced under prohibition. Soon after taking office FDR made a beer with a low concentration of alcohol accessible and legal.


The Rich Man’s Choice becomes “Poor”

The Great Depression scared all, including the rich. The Stock Market crash and other economic struggles forced Americans to stop purchasing! This in result led to much less production of goods and directly decreased the amount of human labor needed. People continued to loose their jobs and used places like “The POOR MAN’S STORE” as their last resort for trading, buying and selling what goods they did or did not need. On the contrary the first picture on the left, represents a normal environment inside of a store before all economic hell breaks out. Once people begin to refrain from buying because of a shortage of jobs and income, even those people who bought items on installment plans are unable to pay their dues and stores are forced to stock up on inventory: thus putting store owners to a loss.


I have the right to?

The prohibition of alcohol was a long and debatable topic. Everything was truly against the law, drinking, selling, importing, manufacturing and transportation. Prohibition was instituted by the 18th amendment which was ratified in 1919. Prohibition can also be defined as a legal term which analyzes the environment where the law was actually enforced! Eventually what prohibition did was worse than good, it created an atmosphere of illegal and criminal behavior. It created a route for “organized crime.” If an individual could not get it the right way, they found it another way. The life term of this amendment was not very long, its unpopularity forced it to be taken back into courts, and in 1933, it was up to the individual states to do as they pleased with alcohol.


Expansion and Power

Prior to WWI many new alliances and nations were competing to be the new world power. Power came with additional influence on territories outside of your own. The European influence and stream of expansion began in Asia and Africa long before the war, but this is probably one of the many other ways in which the countries competed for and maintained their status on a world platform. An additional cause may also be militarism. Power is also symbolized through the means of weapons and military strength a nation has. The arms race was one which was long and spread wide influenced competition between countries like Russia and Germany.

Lastly, nationalism always fuels wars. Each nation is fighting for the prestige and individual interest of their nation. The same holds true for WWI. Dominance and power can only be won through maintaining standards that boost of a nation’s capability, Europe fell victim to this epidemic as well.


The Peace Settlement: The Fourteen Points

How easy it for a President to avoid war? Under the circumstances the world was in during the years prior to World War one, not easy. However, wartime President, Woodrow Wilson, did whatever he could to refrain from war for two whole years. His eventual decision to go to war in 1912, was only to be the world a “safe place for a democracy.” Most people would agree that Wilson was a pacifist in nature and did whatever he could to create a peaceful situation both at home and abroad. His attempts finally established the fourteen points, which served as a peace settlement. The text does not provide the terms and explain the language of these fourteen points in as much debt or clarity as I would like. In fact, this attempt on behalf of the U.S. to stress the reason of war and post-war planning should be understood in more depth with a better analysis, which was perhaps lacking from the side of Foner. It is important to understand that the fourteen points confirmed that the war was being fought for a reason, a moral one. These fourteen points pushed for the freedom of the seas, negotiations between territories and nations, redrawn borders and probably most important, the formation of the League of Nations.


Settlement House Movement

This was social movement aimed for reform in the United States. The goal of this movement was to bring unity in a community amongst the rich and the poor. This in action would promote a more interdependent community. One of the more famous settlement house’s was founded by a woman by the name of Jane Adams in Chicago. This movement encouraged the diffusion of culture, knowledge and education in poverty stricken and low-income neighborhhoods.

picture traced back to www.uic.edu


Two Pictures Telling The Same Story

Chinese Exclusion Act: This Federal law suspended immigration, in specific Chinese immigration. This ban lasted for about ten years. The California Gold Rush marked the first mass Chinese immigration to the United States. Understanding this law is important to also understand the context of these two pictures. Both of these images represent the attitude and feelings against the Chinese immigrants. The White community in the United States considered themselves the “supreme race” and they clearly were not welcoming of people who were neither white or black. Does the fact that the “white” folks were the majority race, mean they had the right to discriminate against other minority groups? Obviously no, but this was not the popular view in the late 1800’s.

Invitation to ratify the Chinese Exclusion Act

The first picture represents a flyer which invites the white folks to come and ratify the Chinese Exclusion Act and suspend all immigration from South East Asia. The second picture similarly represents the anger the whites have for the Chinese, who continue to use their good work ethic to take the jobs of the “white folks.” This cartoon represents the California Gold Rush and the cheap labor Chinese immigrants provided to build the city infrastructure.

Chinese accused of talking the "white man's" job.

Invitation to ratify the Chinese Exclusion Act


The 13th amendment to the United States constitution formally abolished slavery, in 1865. This amendment reads “neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.” This amendment finished the unfulfilled role of the Emancipation Proclamation issued in 1863. This document informally declared all slaves free, but not guarantee that they were indeed free.

It is very important to understand the 13th amendment to be a guarantor of future Americans civil rights. The 13th amendment was later followed by the 14th and 15th amendments, which are also recognized as Civil War amendments. It is important to understand the process this and how long it took for this to formal freedom of slaves to become an amendment. In 1864, the Senate passed the amendment, but the House declined. It was then reintroduced into the House and passed with a vote of 119 to 56.


THE Scandal: Watergate Scandal

The Watergate Scandal left a new impression of government, government officials and in specific President Nixon. This was an eye opener for both Americans and political elites that no one, including the President is allowed to breach laws. This event marked the beginning of new laws which made it important to disclose finances by government officials.


Perspectives make history.

What is history? How are events really remembered? These are both questions which are important in understanding what is passed off as history, what is recollected as events important to history, and how they have been recorded. Multiple bias’s reign blogs, textbooks, history resources and also what is communicated through word of mouth. Similarly, Eric Foner’s book exhibits a different perspective of understanding the American Civil War. Race is something which can be understood through the analysis he provides. For anyone who has any background of American history, they are sure to come across the whole discourse of race.

Understanding history is a challenge in itself, because of the multiple ambiguities which may come with any one event. The way it is understood, recalled and narrated further is based on an individual’s background and their personal bias. I have mentioned this before, and the reason for the repetition is solely because it is that important to understand! In most cases oral sources, used as primary sources are the most popular ways of events being recalled and talked about. A very small population of people look into documents, collect research and data to test the validity of a pre-existing opinion or thought. If this is the case, then it becomes even more important to understand what source you are getting your history from. This is because not all sources are legitimate. This book review offers another testable way of coming to know of unique interpretations of one war.

I recall hearing many stories of the 1947 Indian partition from my grandmother and being confused as a child about why and how the British left the country divided. Did they really want to leave newly free and sovereign state in ruins because of cultural and religious differences? Or was it in fact the Indians themselves who forced this separation and violent mass migration upon themselves? Depending on who I approached to understand this event, I was confronted with different views and takes on it.


History and Transparency

Are we in a world of too much transparency, or too little has always been the question people have argued and debated. It seems like people like to pick and choose what they would like to know more about and what they would not like to get public. Many individuals preach privacy and the right to privacy as something which should be upheld and maintained for the sake of citizens, but why do we still seek transparency in issues where national security is involved? These issues time and time again are questioned and debated and there never seems to be a solution or one set decision on what should be done. Reading these two articles “Archiving Tweets” and “WikiLeaks and the Historical Community,” made this opinion of mine even stronger?

When it comes to our personal lives, we prefer and expect to have our privacy, but if we as individuals are comfortable enough to update every breathing second of our lives on social websites like twitter-we should not be concerned about the decison of Library of Congress’s to digitally archive public tweets. In today’s date, most individuals are machine driven, or technology driven. We always have access to the internet and social networking websited like twitter and facebook on our laptops, desktops and even cell phones!  We are constantly seen walking down streets balancing our walk and our typing speed on blackberry phone keypads. If this is the case, then it may certainly be a wise decision to record the behavior of humans and how they maintain a craze to have their voice heard and get noticed via these meduims of socialization. Historians may in fact come across a lot of jergen and incomprehensible tweets, but I would certainly agree with one of the commentators on the “Archiving Tweets” article, somewhere or another historians will find what they are looking for.

History is not something which remains constant and neither are the means in the way history is both taught and studied and read. If this is the case then technology has already started making the process for both historians and students different. We have more means of doing research and collecting data then we may have ever had before, in addition the ability to archive public human activity on the net, could help conclude on many other things concerning perhaphs human activity, performance, sociology and politics. The wikileaks incident dumped many government classified documents out in the public, whether this should be a national security concern within itself is very important to realize. Where do we find the balance between openness and secretcy? Who makes these decisions? Well I wish there was an easier way to find the answers to questions like these, however, incidents like these which happen once in a while do nothing to aid in answering these questions. I would have to agree with the author, K.C. Johnson, document dumps like this one only complicate the situation even more.