Prosperity?

Prosperity?

Prosperity?

Prosperity?

Excerpt

In recent years it would seem that it has become almost an article of faith with the orthodox hundred percent American that he is a citizen of a prosperous country. He believes in prosperity somewhat as he believes in the Constitution. Even when he is worrying where he will get the money to pay the next installment on his radio, our good citizen still thinks he is prosperous or, if not, that his is an individual and unusual case and that with energy and a little luck he may find a way out of his difficulties.

Yet, come to think of it, even now there are an amazing number of exceptions to this generalization. Mississippi flood sufferers and Western farmers aren't boasting about prosperity. Coal miners and textile workers are wondering where they fit into this picture of a prosperous people. As we write, there comes on the horizon a number of signs of the decline in the latest period of prosperity in America. But it is not good form to discuss these troubles in the great newspapers and the cheap magazines. The genuine magnitude of our aggregate wealth, and a standard of living considerably higher than the rest of the world, give a solid basis of fact on which the press agents of prosperity can work. It is not likely that their voices will be completely silenced, even if, as now seems not improbable, we have already passed the crest of the present wave of good times.

Now this American prosperity, such as it is, has enormous implications for everyone interested in progress toward social justice. What is the effect of prosperity upon trade unionism? Is it responsible for the decline in strength of radical political movements? What differences in theory and practice should the present degree of economic well being force . . .

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