This is an excerpt from my book "America on Strike." If you would like to learn more about this book or how to purchase this book, simply click on book cover on the right of this page. Thanks.
Red Scare 1918-1920 [This period in American History seems to me to be the most comparable to our present day situation. I’m waiting for the PBS special documentary film on this era.] By Richard E. Noble The Red Scare is a term used, traditionally, to describe a period of politically contrived mass paranoia beginning around the years 1917-18 and ending in approximately 1920-21. It relates to the notion of a conspiracy to overthrow the American government. The main group alleged to be at the root of this conspiracy were Communist. In truth The Red Scare began in 1840 with Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto and didn’t end until the recent crumbling of the Berlin Wall in East Germany; but 1917 through 1921 represents an exaggerated spike in the intensity of the overall government policy. One would have to say that the seed of the panic was planted in Russia when in 1917 the Russian people “deserted” the Eastern Front during World War I and revolted against their traditionally oppressive Czarist government, precipitating a chaotic Civil War. The Bolshevist represented the workingman, the laborer, the struggling family man and international Unionism - Bolshevism was interpreted by the American Industrialists, and small and moderate business owners alike in the American historical tradition as an outright threat to their right to exist. And, of course, Communism being a radical and extremist point of view within the various political leanings of the social reformist did represent these fears. It was the stated goal of the Communists to end the Capitalist domination of the economic world. Their rhetoric was severe and threatening. So if we take Communism as it was stated why would we then call the behavior of anti-Communists paranoid? In other words one would not be considered paranoid in trying to protect himself from people who were truly trying to destroy him. He would instead be “farsighted” and his behavior appropriate. The action taken during this period in U.S. history is considered paranoid because the suppression of Communism was exaggerated into an excuse to stifle even legitimate and often patriotic necessary dissent and reasonable criticism of the government, the industrialist and the wealthy controlling elite. A Quaker and a man who was considered a virtual pacifist during World War I - a man who had refused a national wartime position on his religious beliefs - by the name of A. Mitchell Palmer was appointed by then president Woodrow Wilson to be the Attorney General of the United States. Mr. Palmer turned out to be an extremist for the conservative point of view. He took patriotism to its far edge. He suppressed “inalienable” rights guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution. He orchestrated inappropriate mass arrests around the country. His actions precipitated vigilantism, violence, brutality, mass imprisonment, even torture and murder. Mr. Palmer’s new authoritarianism is attributed to a bomb being exploded outside of his home. There were a series of bomb threats in eight different States at this time. They were directed at prominent wealthy citizens. Though they had no evidence other than this fact the attacks were attributed to Anarchists and Communists. Critics of Mr. Palmer accused him of being behind the bomb plantings for the purpose of establishing himself in the upcoming presidential election. Others suggested that these bombs were just more of the old Industrialist’s tricks. The big shots had been caught in the past blowing up their own equipment, promoting violence, and planting bombs to turn the general public against the usual and ordinary suspects. But an ounce of suspicion was worth more than a pound of proof and the repressive crusade proceeded. With the end of the war the expected economic depression was set in motion. The end of war production meant severe cutbacks. At home 9 million had been employed in businesses directly connected with the war and another 4 million soldiers had returned home looking for work. The abundance of unemployed led to wage cuts and then lay-offs. The wage cuts and lay-offs then led to massive labor strikes. There were strikes everywhere - steel, coal, textiles; even the Boston Police Department went on strike - and with very good cause. The unemployment and job competition led to race riots and even women were protesting in the streets. The girls were fighting against child labor, and the oppression of women. They wanted the right to vote - and many were demanding sobriety from their husbands - outrageous! Prohibition was made the law of the land. Suffragettes were marching in the streets. The rebellious attitude of the women, children, blacks, unemployed workers, striking employed workers, policeman, union members, socialist, reformers, pacifists, hoboes and bums, outside agitators (immigrants) and whoever and whatever were all attributed to the rise of Communism. They were all Communist - Reds! And they were all involved in the organized attempt to bring down the United States Government. The American Legion was started in 1919 as a patriotic organization to protect “loyal” native born Americans from these ungrateful immigrants and outside agitators. In a very short time the American Legion had over 600,000 members. A law was passed in 32 States outlawing the display of the Red Flag. The Red Flag had been adopted by the Communists but in actuality represented the blood of the Labor Union martyrs who were executed in 1886 in Chicago in response to the Haymarket Square riots. There was a massive labor strike in Seattle followed by an even bigger steel strike. There were mass arrests around the nation - 4,000 in one event and 10,000 in another. Palmer had hired a man destined to become famous for vice, J. Edgar Hoover, to head a new bureau designed to uncover Bolshevik Conspiracies. In no time at all Hoover had over 200,000 cards of dangerous, destructive, potential anarchist in his file cabinets - names of prominent blacks, reformers and intellectuals. The I.W.W. which had been nearly destroyed during the war - with all its leadership incarcerated - continued to be attacked. The Alien and Espionage acts were passed. Eugene Debs the famous Socialist Party leader had been imprisoned for speaking out against the war. People were now being arrested for saying anything against the government or even “looking like a radical”. Victor Berger a socialist who had been elected to Congress was denied his seat. And finally the Buford shipped off with its boat load of Anarchist being deported to Russia. The shipment included the famous anarchists Emma Goldman and Alexander Berkman. The fanatic crackdown didn’t slow down until the business community began to realize a shortage in their cheap labor market. With the horrid thought of higher wages confronting them the Red Scare finally began to dissipate - but like the “old soldier” it never did die and it could hardly be said to have “faded” away.
Books by Richard Edward Noble. Click on covers below for more info and purchasing instructions.
Classic Tragic Novel
Don't Laugh - This Could Have Been Your Life
Funny stories and some strange characters.
Monkey Dishes and Cocktail Fawks
My Harrowing days in the restaurant business. Great Read.
It's a Long Story
Long Short Fiction - Great stories!
Bloggin' Be My Life
"Bloggin' be My Life" contains a selection of some of my more popular Hobo Philosopher blogs.If you enjoy reading this blog, you should love Bloggin' Be My Life.
It's All About Love
It's All About Love is ... all about love. This is the 2nd book of poetry from The Bard From Chelmsford off Arlington. Every poem in this book comes with a prose introduction. If you enjoy poetry this is a simple choice. Have fun!
A Little Something
Traditional poetry from The Bard From Chelmsford Off Arlington with some poignant prose introductions. If you enjoy any type of poetry, you will enjoy this volume. Thanks.
Talking To Myself
This is my third book of poetry.
Bits and Pieces
The Hobo Philosopher - My first book using the Hobo Philosopher brand. Featuring a variety of writing styles and ideas. Look for the Thoughtful Hobo on the cover.
A Baker's Dozen
The Hobo Philosopher: My Second book of Fiction, Creative Non-Fiction and Short Stories. All varieties of short stories - lots of laughs!
Cat Point - and Them Dang Oyster People
Cat Point is the sequel to "The Eastpointer." Both books contain humorous tales about life in a fishing community on the Florida Panhandle. Lots of laughs.
Won 1st Place award for humor in 2007 from Florida Press Association. More wit, wisdom and humor from the yet to be world famous author, R.E. Noble
A Summer with Charlie - Lawrence
Fiction - Salisbury Beach, Lawrence, Mass. Featured in Merrimack Valley Magazine July /Aug. issue 2010
Travel, Humor, Commentary on migrant farm work and illegal immigration still very pertinent today.
"Just Hangin' Out Ma"
Thank God for the Street Corners of Lawrence, Mass. Anecdotes and humorous escapades about growing up in an industrial mill town in the 40s,50s and 60s.
This is the sequel to "Just Hangin' Out, Ma"
That Old Gang of Mine
This is # 3 in my Lawrence Hometown series. The series is about growing up in the 40's, 50's and 60's in an industrial mill town. Sorta like a Huck Finn goes to vist Uncle Ralph, the bus driver, who lives in a big, rundown city. Lots of fun.
Come On-A My House
This is # 4 in my Lawrence Hometown series.The old homested at 32 Chelmsford ST is pictured on the cover..
Down By The Old Mill Stream
# 5 in the Lawrence My Hometown series.
Standing on the Corner is # 6 in the lawrence My Hometown series.
The old Howard Playstead on Lawrence St.
Eat, Drink and Be Merry
# 7 in the Lawrence my Hometown series.
Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother
Classic tragic novel written from child's perspective. Deals with abuse, poverty, unemployment. Pulls no punches.
Noble Notes on Famous Folks
Humorous, satirical notes on everybody from Constantine to Bill Clinton. Inspiration: Willy Cuppy.
America on Strike
History - documented survey of labor strikes in America
Mein Kampf - An Analysis of Book One
Who are the American Nazis - the Liberals or the Conservatives?
MY NAME IS RICHARD EDWARD NOBLE. I AM A FREELANCE WRITER AND I HAVE PUBLISHED 12 BOOKS:"THE EASTPOINTER" - SELECTIONS FROM AWARD WINNING NEWSPAPER COLUMN - "A LITTLE SOMETHING" - POETRY WITH PROSE -"HONOR THY FATHER AND THY MOTHER" - A NOVEL ABOUT GROWING UP IN THE NEW ENGLAND MILL TOWN OF LAWRENCE, MASS, "HOBO-ING AMERICA" - A WORKINGMAN'S TOUR OF THE U.S.A. - "A SUMMER WITH CHARLIE" - THE STORY OF A YOUNG SAILOR'S LAST DAYS AT SALISBURY BEACH, "NOBLE NOTES ON FAMOUS FOLKS" - HUMOROUS ANECDOTES ON FAMOUS FOLKS IN HISTORY,
"AMERICA ON STRIKE" HISTORY BOOK - A SURVEY OF LABOR STRIKES IN AMERICA; "A BAKER'S DOZEN" A BOOK OF HUMOROUS SHORT STORIES; "JUST HANGIN' OUT, MA" - GROWING UP IN THE 40'S, 50'S AND 60'S IN LAWRENCE, MY HOMETOWN, "TENEMENT DWELLERS" - SEQUEL TO JUST HANGIN OUT, MA; MEIN KAMPF - ANALYSIS OF BOOK ONE - HISTORY. CAT POINT - AND THEM DANG OYSTER PEOPLE - SEQUEL TO THE EASTPOINTER
All 12 BOOKS ARE AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM, BARNES AND NOBLE AND OTHER INTERNET SOURCES OR FROM NOBLE PUBLISHING. ALL 12 OF MY BOOKS ARE NOW ON KINDLE AT BARGAIN PRICES TOO. IF YOU WOULD LIKE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT DISCOUNTS AND SPECIAL OFFERS E-MAIL ME. MY EMAIL IS ON MY PROFILE PAGE.