Robber Barons Book Report

Words: 1053
Pages: 5

“A little money and hard work will make any man independent...” - Jay Gould
Jay Gould, Andrew Carnegie, J. P. Morgan, and John D. Rockefeller self-made men of the Gilded Age and Captains of Industry or Robber Barons? The question does not ask if these men were successful, but rather if these men were willing to sacrifice their souls with unethical, immoral, and corruption in exchange for power and greed. Edward Renehan attempts to shed new light or rather a deeper understanding of notorious king of the Robber Barons Jay Gould in his book Dark Genius of Wall Street: The Misunderstood Life of Jay Gould, King of the Robber Barons. Here he will describe Gould as one of the most hated and despised human beings of his time even by fellow Captains
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Renehan ensure to add quotations from local press even the newspaper he himself once owned was quoted in a very negative light of Jay Gould. Was this because Gould care nothing for the common man, or poor? Or was it because from the time he relieved himself from poverty he wished to ensure that his family or himself never return to it? Corrupt business tactics, yes Gould was definitely guilty of this, one major event pointed out by Renehan goes into great detail how Gould managed to corner the market on gold. Many of the evidence provide would consists of bribing Ulysses S Grant's brother in law Corbin. Gould does this by creating a bank account in Grants sister's name and adding funds to it to ensure his dedication. Gould will also take every opportunity in pressing the president himself at every turn in changing the policy in which the government regulates gold and the circulation of the currency it backs. This was just one of Jay Gould's well-orchestrated money making plans. Along with bribing Corbin, he would successfully have Corbin lobby to insert his own choice into the office of assistant federal treasurer for New York. From this point Gould would purchase large amounts of gold stocks along with having other people obtain stock from him as well. I believe this practice is now referred to as insider trading and is highly …show more content…
From this Gould heard of a piece of land that the shopkeeper would become interested in buying. With some wit and tenacity he would convince his father to borrow $2500 to purchase this property and then in turn flip it for a profit of $2000. Learning of Gould’s crookedness the shopkeeper would promptly terminate Gould for his dishonesty and underhandedness. Was this where dear Jason Jay Gould got his first taste of insider information and how profitable it can be? Or was this the start to a career of a well-planned out entrepreneur? Burton Folsom feels as if these crooks so lovely referred to as Robber Barons are the foundation of American economic growth rather than swindlers. “Entrepreneurs cut costs and made many contributions to American economic growth, but they also marred political life by bribing politicians, forming pools, and misusing government funds.” Personally this sounds like a whole lot of lying, stealing, and cheating. Not building a strong foundation for the American economic