Richard T. Ely

United States economist and author (1854-1943)

Richard Theodore Ely (13 April 18544 October 1943) was an American economist, author, and leader of the Progressive movement who called for more government intervention in order to reform what they perceived as the injustices of capitalism, especially regarding factory conditions, compulsory education, child labor, and labor unions.

Richard T. Ely, 1903

Ely is best remembered as a founder and the first Secretary of the American Economic Association, as a founder and secretary of the Christian Social Union, and as the author of a series of widely read books on the organized labor movement, socialism, and other social questions.

Quotes edit

  • They have two distinguishing characteristics. The vast majority of them are laborers, and, as a rule, they expect the violent overthrow of existing institutions by revolution to precede the introduction of the socialistic state. I would not, by any means, say that they are all revolutionists, but the most of them undoubtedly are...
    The most general demands of the social democrats are the following: The state should exist exclusively for the laborers; land and capital must become collective property, and production be carried on unitedly. Private competition, in the ordinary sense of the term, is to cease.

Quotes about Richard T. Ely edit

  • Even before Haymarket, ordinarily sober observers of the political scene, such as the economist Richard Ely, responded to the anarchists with alarm. In an article written just before the bombing but not published until shortly after it, Ely characterized the philosophy of the anarchists as one of "gunpowder, petroleum, and dynamite, and their cry is away with religion, away with the family, away with the state." Warning his readers that "doubtless two or three hundred thousand" men and women in the United States were either committed anarchists or sympathizers (an estimate surely inflated by fear), Ely concluded anxiously that "in times of excitement or restlessness, when men in a frenzy of anger are looking about for someone to lead them, those who have been trained in this party may do great damage." Ely and others greatly exaggerated the terrorist nature of anarchism.
    • Margaret S Marsh, Anarchist Women, 1870-1920 (1981)

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