"the roaring 20s"
Consumer Economy is a type of economy that relies on people buying and spending. Consumer spending has risen 72% in the US since 1960. The US wealth has doubled between 1920-1930. To have this economy thrive, prices had to change. Stores started lowering prices to make things more affordable for the middle class.
Pros and Cons of a Consumer Economy
- Prices of items would go down, which means people in the middle class would be able to afford things
- People could start to buy things that weren't as important as food and clothes
- Improved our economy
- Made our economy reliable. As long as things are being made and people are buying them our economy will stay strong
- People get money from having jobs. If people keep losing their jobs and we run out of business for them to work in then that means they wont have enough money to buy those items
Advertising (Consumer Economy)
Advertising plays a big role in this type of economy. It has also helped us start creating a demand for gadgets and appliances.
Social media plays a big role in advertising. Everywhere you look there is an advertisement. Advertising is also another way to get people hyped about a product. Everyone always wants the items on infomercials because it looks cool but in reality it probably doesn't work. They advertise things to get people to want it and that's how they make their money. I think advertising plays a big role on Consumer Economy because it promotes products and gets people wanting to buy the product.
BUY NOW, PAY LATER (Consumer Economy)
Many people started to live by the motto “BUY NOW, PAY LATER.”I think this motto was something that helped the US gain power and a good way to improve our economy. I think that the 20's were a time where we improved our economic standing and our standing in the world. This moto is mainly why stores started giving people credit. Credit is were you can buy the item off in the future instead of paying for it right there. Without having credit I don't think consumer economy would have thrived as much. One reason i don't think it would have thrived is because you weren't paid a lot back then and you had more important expenses to pay. I think with stores bringing prices down and making an option to have credit it helped the US start a consumer economy.
Picture Credit: "Broken Piggy Bank", 2001, Licensed under public domain at Flicker.
Immigration gave the U.S an economic edge. Immigrants brought initiative ideas and entrepreneurial spirit to the U.S. They helped us created new business in the U.S. They also enhanced America's ability to trade and invest world wide. They are a huge reason why we can keep prices down and respond to changes in consumer demand.
Another way I think they helped out our economy is by filling jobs that others didn't want to fill. For example jobs like physics or working in construction or restaurants. They basically toke jobs Americans didn't want so when people say they don't want immigrants because they take jobs in reality that's not true. They really just toke jobs that no one else in America wanted to fill.
Photo Credit: "Ellis Island," 1901, Licensed under public domain at wikipedia.org.
The 19th Amendment
Photo Credit: "Women's suffrage in the United States," 1936, Licensed under public domain at wikipedia.org.
Another thing that was just created was the movie theater. Many people called it a "magical experience." People were so excited and amazed by the movies back then because they had ushers that lead them to there seat. Another thing that was amazing about them is that they were the size of cathedrals. One thing that isn't the same now is that movie theaters in the 1920's had nurseries and baby sitters for kids! I like how back then the movies had restaurants, dance floors, and art galliers. Its cool how they had one great big place for all of those things, unlike now where everything is separate.
Photo Credit: "Don Juan opens Warners' Theatre," 1926, Licensed under public domain at wikipedia.org.
John Thomas Scopes was a teacher in Tennessee, who was charged for violating Tennessee's Butler Act, which prohibited the teaching of evolution in any Tennessee public schools or university. Evolution is the gradual development of something. It is mainly used when talking about living organisms. For example the evolution of humans.
The American Civil Liberties Union offered a fund to a legal defense for any teacher in Tennessee willing to fight the law in court. Scopes was willing to accept the challenge. In spring of 1925 Scopes walked into his classroom and read Dayton's theory of natural selection. He was then arrested and his trail date was set.
Scopes had one of the most Legendre attorneys, Clarence Darrow. On the states side they had William Jennings Bryan as a attorney. He was a former candidate for the U.S. presidency. He toke the case barbecue he believed that the evolution theory could let to dangerous social movements.
Photo Credit: "Scopes Trial Museum," 2010, Licensed under public domain at Flicker.com
I think this law and trail has a lot to do with what we learn in school now. They made laws on what we can and cant be taught. I don't think this trail brought a lot of good to the country because people had different thoughts on this topic. It probley bought a lot of tension and differences. Because this trail was very big back in the 1920's i think that's why we have museums about it. Its something that was an important topic back then and I like how we have places to show us the history of it.
After WW1 farming didn't go to well. US agriculture expanded during WW1 because we were selling food to Europe, but after the war all those countries returned to growing there own food. The expansion of crops and other things led to over-production, which means that there was too much food on the market and no one was buying all of it. Farmers came to the difficulty of not being able to sell their produce.
Many farmers were in a lot of debt. The only way farmers could get rid of that debt was by selling there farms. Between 1920 and 1932, one in four farms was sold to meet financial obligations and many farmers migrated to urban areas. I think the reason they moved to urban areas was because it was more reliable than farming. Another reason i think they moved to urban areas was because we were becoming more of a consumer economy and farming wasn't that involved in this type of economy. I think they were just doing was the safest to have money and not go into debt again.
Because there were so many Americans in debt they didn't buy foreign good which made foreigners earn less. That wasn't good because that meaned they didn't spend as much money on the US foodstuffs. This made it so European countries stopped buying from the US because we weren't buying from them. In the end there was a severe agricultural depression. We also had a lot of competition from Canada, who produced a large amount of wheat. All of this competition wasn't good for the US and farmers. During the 1920's more than 600,000 farmers went bankrupt.
Another bad thing that happened in the South was that they were so dependent on farms. Few farms back then had electricity, running water, and there wages were very low so without farming they had almost nothing.
One bad thing that happened was farmers were depended on cotton and when the price of cotton crashed farmers started to struggle finally. Then dust storms started to hot which blew away topsoil and destroyed more of the agricultural land. This made it impossible for farmers to even grow anything, which meaned they made no money.
Photo Credit: "Dust Bowl," 1936, Licensed under public domain at Wikipedia.org
Technology (Movie Theater and silent movies)
The first ever movie theater was invented in 1908, but it wasn't till 1920 when they started to become popular. Movie theaters back then seemed way more fun and cool. They didn't just have movies there. They had restaurants and dance floors! It seemed to me like it was kinda like a mall. All of these different things combined into one building. I think that if we had all those cool things they had in the movie theaters back then more people would go now. I think that movie theater led to silent movies. Silent movies were first introduced to people in 1922. They turned out to be extremely popular. At the time it was the 3rd leading business industry. I think the movie theater was a great way to have fun and just get out of the house.
The radio was a great way to bond with family. In the evening, families would gather around the radio, and spend hours listening to news, music, drama, sports, and shows. People nowadays barley watch tv with there families because we have phones that tell us news right when it happens.