• “In the European countries, the newly rich industrialists stood in opposition to the old money of the royal families. Columbia University sociologists Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven described how these European industrialists and royal families competed for the workers’ allegiance. This gave the workers more leverage to gain concessions, such as better workplace conditions and national health care. Piven and Cloward noted the marked difference between European and American labor history. When the industrialists rose up in the U.S. after the 1860s Civil War, there was no aristocracy standing in opposition to them. As workers in the factories tried to organize for better wages and conditions, the industrialists initially used violence against them, but soon employed more sophisticated strategies.21 The opium-trafficking families ramped up their importation of drugs by the end of the 1800s. Companies marketed much of the imported opium and its first derivative, morphine, in medicines. But at least a quarter of imported opium was intended for smoking. By 1900 over 1% of the U.S. population was addicted to opium. Addiction to opium, particularly heroin, rose “at alarming rates” in 1903, in parallel with a rise of worker activism.”

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