THE BACKGROUND OF AGRARIAN RADICALISM
RADICAL POLITICAL movements are assuming a dominant position in the world today. England, France, Norway, Israel, Russia, China, Hungary, Poland, are but some of the countries in which political parties whose avowed goal is a "socialist" society control or form part of the government. In many other countries in Europe, South America, and Asia, democratic leftist or totalitarian communist parties are major political forces.1
The United States and Canada are the foremost exceptions to the growing collectivist trend. Capitalist democracy, which attained its greatest heights on this continent, has not been challenged by a significant nation-wide socialist movement. The immense material wealth of North America, which has given workers and farmers a higher living standard than in any other place on earth, has apparently prevented any organized threat to the capitalist system.
Various attempts have been made to explain why there is no socialism in the United States or Canada. For the most part, these have tried to answer the question by comparing the social and