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Elitism and Institutional Power Paper

Essay by   •  June 20, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,240 Words (5 Pages)  •  2,217 Views

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Elitism and Institutional Power Paper

In this paper, the author will describe the basis of power for Henry Ford. The author will explain where the wealth, influence over information distribution, immediate access to policymakers, or any combination of the above are derived. The author will describe the strategies that Henry Ford used to maintain status and influence. She will describe how he networked with other elites, business practices and direct political participation.

The author will provide specific examples of how Henry Ford has influenced public policy, outline the obstacles and how they were they overcome. The author will provide an apt example of social mobility. The author will outline if Henry Ford is a self-made mogul, or was his power largely inherited.

The author will support how elitist theorists explain wealth and power in America and finally the author will assess whether or not the power wielded by the selected elite figure positively or negatively represents the author's interests.

The author has selected Henry Ford as her Henry Ford, born July 30, 1863, was the first of William and Mary Ford's six children. He grew up on a modest family farm in what is today Dearborn, Michigan. Henry enjoyed a childhood typical of the rural nineteenth century, spending days in a one-room school and doing farm chores. At an early age, he showed an interest in mechanical things and a dislike for farm work. Henry Ford (2009) Long before he started a car company, he was an inveterate tinkerer, known for picking up loose scraps of metal and wire and turning them into machines. He'd been putting cars together since 1891. Iacocca, L. (2007) Through her research the author realized that Henry Ford was able to think outside of the box, he was futuristic. In terms of today, Ford would be the person who invented the computer, the electric car or alternative energy. Ford along with his core group was able to create not only the model T, but the assembly line. Ford labeled a slave driver by many resulted in employees forming the first large labor union in the country. Through negotiations the Unions were able to negotiate the $5 minimum wage work day which many dubbed as by critics as "an economic crime," because his hourly wage doubled that of the country. In addition, Ford created the 8 hour work week, health and vacation benefits. The Ford company also created the gas station to keep the little tin cars moving. By the late 1915, the sociological department was implementing the moral strictures that framed the five-dollar day and seeking to shape the character, domestic life and financial habits of Ford workers. Watts, S (2005) When an individual peel back all the layers, the Ford Company was either responsible for the foundation many companies created to support the industry.

The basis of Henry Ford's power is that he is the founder of the automobile industry. At a very young age Ford developed mechanical aptitude and became an apprentice in a machine shop. Ford left home in 1879 to develop his craft. He worked for the Edison Company to learn more about how to cultivate his interest in his new invention: the gasoline powered automobile. Ford built several working Model T and in 1903 he built the Ford Motor Company. Fords goal was to create cars that middle-class people could afford and that is what he did, in 1908 the Ford Company rolled out the inexpensive Model T which cost $950.00. In an age of horse and buggy Ford was able to create a product which was not only necessary in the U.S., but in the global market, his

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