Bill and Rachel explore the disappointments of the Great Southwest Railroad strike of 1886 and reflect on potential lessons for present-day railroad labor relations. (Note: After we recorded this episode, the results were released for the 2022 rail worker votes on tentative agreements. The engineers narrowly approved the proposed contract, while the conductors narrowly rejected it.)
Description: From Covid to Climate, planned economies are the future, but who will do the planning and who will benefit? We go back to the 1870s and the rise of corporate bureaucracy. Bill, Rachel, Kelley.
Description: Beyond “natural monopolies,” the second industrial revolution beginning in the 1870s probably required the formation of monopolies like Standard Oil, but did those monopolies have to be in private hands? Bill and Rachel investigate.
Description: Rachel and Bill explain how Rockefeller pushed his way to the top position in the early U.S. oil industry in the early 1870s and began to form a monopoly. (This episode is a continuation of the narrative in part 1.)