Here is a brief history of these two billionaires who built America and how a war brought on by greed got started between them. The lives of many hard-working Americans were destroyed in the wake of their greed.
Rockefeller and Standard oil
In 1870 Rockefeller incorporated the first oil company called Standard Oil, and, became a multi-millionaire from people using his oil to light their homes. In 1890 he started exporting his oil to Japan’s 400 million people. His oil business started on the premise of conservation. He was the first to put oil to use instead of dumping it in the ocean.
Andrew Carnegie the Steel Giant
At the same time, Andrew Carnegie started manufacturing steel In Pennsylvania which became America’s number one supplier of steel for the war. He made the first steel rails for the railroad, and, became the first to make a steel bridge, and founded the Keystone Bridge Company which made steel bridges all over the country!
Jealousy reared its ugly head
When Andrew Carnegie read in the Newspaper that Rockefeller was the richest man in the world, he got jealous! He was not happy that he was named the second richest man in the world. So he set out to become number one. He started manufacturing steel and put it to many uses such as making steel bridges and rails for trains to run on and steel beams for New York’s skyscrapers.
He still was not the richest man in the world so he hired Henry Clay Frick who was known for his underhanded ways when it comes to making money. Frick forced Carnegie’s steelworkers to work longer hours for less pay.
From the blood and sweat of the underpaid workers, production is increased! With the extra money, Henry Clay Frick constructs the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club and retreats for the Wealthy! He is told by officials that constructing this retreat will weaken the dam. The weakened dam collapses on Memorial Day 1889 in which thousands of people in the valley were killed sweeping the town away. This historic event known as the Johnstown Flood leads to Frick’s downfall.
The irony of this is that a telegraph was sent to the Telegraph Office in Johnstown warning that the dam was about to collapse but this warning went unheeded because the Telegraph Office had heard this warning several times previously. They did not seem to take into account that the rain was coming down heavier than usual on this day.
The steelworker’s revolt against the long hours and lower pay!
They set up a union and strike. They barricade the plant to keep Frick from hiring workers to replace them. Meanwhile, Carnegie stays out of the United States to keep from being blamed.
Frick hires the Pinkerton Guards to keep the workers from barricading the plant in Homestead, Pennsylvania. The Pinkerton National Detective Agency was more powerful than the American military at that time. It was an overkill effort in which many steelworkers were shot and injured. The government had to call out the National Guard to restore order!
Due to public outcry regarding this event, an attempt is made on Frick’s life!
This was the last straw for Carnegie so he is forced to fire Frick!
Andrew Carnegie wanted to be known as a good man with high moral values
To make up for the bad things that Henry Clay Frick did Carnegie bought libraries, Carnegie hall and engaged in other artistic endeavors.
Carnegie and Rockefeller spend the next 10 years in rivalry until they finally head in different directions! Carnegie sets out to repair his reputation and Rockefeller tries to undermine the progress of the electric light bulb. He launches an attack on electricity trying to prove that it is dangerous.
JP Morgan a millionaire banker comes on the scene and devises a scheme to buy out Edison after Edison concedes to the first electrocution of a death row prisoner. Edison’s greed led him straight into this trap. Edison who invented DC only conceded to this death row execution because he wanted to prove that AC was dangerous. Instead, he losses everything to J.P. Morgan because the public associates him with all types of electricity, even though he was against AC (alternating currents)
Another irony is that the inventor of AC (Nicola Tesla) worked for Edison but resigned because Edison looked down on him and would not consider AC. Later this selfless inventor of AC gives his patent to his financial backer George Westinghouse to keep the company from folding. All Nikola Tesla cared about was how AC could help mankind! Yes, there were a few good men among the greedy!
Conclusion: Greed, Greed and More Greed
This is what we call Raw Capitalism meaning no government restrictions in which the lives of the average hard-working American were disregarded. When will America learn to reach a happy medium? We don’t want government interference, but, how well have we done without any restrictions at all??
If we don’t want government interference then we must learn to control our selfishness and greed! However, mankind is not able to do that without God. Even those who profess Christianity cannot control their greed without first submitting to God’s will. God will not force His will on us! Therefore we must learn how to be spirit controlled. This is our only hope for survival!!
The Bible has over 30 verses on the evilness of greed! Here are just a few!
For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.
Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
A greedy man stirs up strife, but the one who trusts in the Lord will be enriched.
1 Timothy 6:9
But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.