1920’s Society – POLITICS

-  Republicans hold the presidency (Harding, Coolidge & Hoover)

-  Red Scare (Lenin “reds” vs. “whites” = former land owners, government officials, army leaders, Britain, France, the USA – whose investments had been seized by the Bolsheviks)

Important oversimplified ideologies of Communism in Soviet Union

1) Government owned all land & property

2)   Single political party

3)   Individuals had no rights that the government was bound to respect

4)   Spread communism all over the world!

-        Soviets were openly hostile to American beliefs

-        USA had an intense fear of communism – Americans called for Communists to be jailed or driven out

-        Another source for the Red Scare was labor strikes – Americans were convinced the Communists were behind the strikes and labor unrest (actual cause of labor unrest was that the cost of living had doubled since before WW1)

-        Republicans led by Harding held to an isolationist foreign policy – avoided political or economic alliances – though they did support disarmament & limited immigration through quotas


Nativist movement returns with more zest – Why?

1)   People from foreign countries could never be fully loyal to USA

2)   Protestants who still disliked Catholics or Jews (or Orthodox Christians)

3)   Problems of the urban life were blamed on immigrants – slums & corruption

4)   Immigrants would take away their jobs

5)   Immigrants may hold or adopt dangerous political ideas


Coolidge was in favor of Laissez Faire policies – by making government smaller

“The business of the America people is business”

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