Guiding Question: to what extent was the individualism promoted by the Republican Presidents a guiding philosophy for them?
I. Underlying Principles • 1. The Promotion of Individualism • 2. Laissez-faire Economics • 3. Actively favoring corporate growth • 4. Isolation from international affairs
II. Harding • Harding as President (1920-1923) • Chosen as candidate because of his anonymity. • Easily won election of 1920 by means of a conservative platform. • “A Return to Normalcy” • No League of Nations • Anti-progressive
II. Harding • Harding the Orator • "I would like the government to do all it can to mitigate, then, in understanding, in mutuality of interest, in concern for the common good, our tasks will be solved." • “The only man, woman, or child who ever wrote a simple declarative sentence with seven grammatical errors is dead.” – E.E. Cummings
II. Harding • Government to Serve Business • By 1926, a person earning $1 million annually paid less than a third of the income tax he had paid in 1920. This was largely through the efforts of Secretary of the Treasury Andrew Mellon. • Encouraged Federal Trade Commission to cooperate with corporations- little regulation or antitrust actions.
II. Harding • Corruption in Office • “Ohio Gang” • Excluding Hoover and Coolidge • Flagrant violation of Prohibition • General Harry Daughtery • Teapot Dome Scandal (1923) • Secret leasing of oil reserves to private corporations • Extramarital Affairs • Don’t go in that closet!
III. Coolidge • “Silent Cal” as President (1923-1924, 1924-1928) • Placed on Harding ticket in 1920 for squashing Boston Police Strike. • “There is no right to strike against the public safety by anyone, anywhere, any time.”
III. Coolidge • Government to serve Business • “After all, the chief business of the American people is business. They are profoundly concerned with buying, selling, investing and prospering in the world.” • Supported more tax cuts for the rich (Mellon) • Unsympathetic to Labor (PA Coal Strikes) • Coolidge benefited from the general economic prosperity as Harding had.
III. Coolidge • Social Policies • Vetoed… • Farm Relief Bill • Veterans Bonus Bill • Refused to aid MS flood victims of 1927
IV. Hoover • Hoover as President (1928-1932) • Soundly defeated Al Smith in 1928 (more on that later). Ran on reputation as efficient and honest.
IV. Hoover • Associative State: • Not premised on governmental coercion or intervention. • Preferred a voluntary, non-governmental approach to economic matters, the better, he reasoned, to protect the "American character.“ • E.g., gov. to encourage cooperation between unions and corporations, not regulate them.
V. Republican Foreign Policy • Republican Foreign Policy • Emphasized focusing energy on domestic rather than foreign affairs
V. Republican Foreign Policy Five Power Treaty (1921) A battleship ratio was achieved through this ratio:US Britain Japan France Italy 5 5 3 1.67 1.67 Japan got a guarantee that the US and Britain would stop fortifying their Far East territories [including the Philippines]. Loophole no restrictions on small warships
V. Republican Foreign Policy (Kellogg-Briand Pact (1926) 15 nations dedicated to outlawing aggression and war as tools of foreign policy. 62 nations signed. Problems no means of actual enforcement and gave Americans a false sense of security.
V. Republican Foreign Policy • Intervention in Latin America • American forces occupied Haiti and Nicaragua in the Harding and Coolidge administrations • Forces from the Dominican Republic were withdrawn in 1924 • On the whole, military intervention was used to maintain American economic interests.
To what degree did the Republican presidents adhere to their stated principles? Review