World War One & The Progressive Movement.
World War I in itself was a progressive movement. There was a coercive and visionary side to the war just like there was for the movement. On one side you had the Americans who believed and still believe that business is politics and that you have to stay ahead of business if you"re going to be a good politician. These were called visionaries. The coercive Americans, on the other hand, didn't feel this was the case. The coercive side of progressivism agreed that the businessman of The United States was the reason for the problems that America was having with the progressive reform. .
Germany, for the most part, took the side of the coercive. They had a slightly different theory though. They believed that value equaled profit over labor over fixed costs. This was called fundamental reform. The United States had a Socialist Party as well, led by Eugene Debbs and had 41,000 members at the end of 1901. This is why the war was called Germany's war against mankind. If the fundamental reform took place instead of the progressive reform then all of mankind would suffer.
Overall, the Progressives were optimists who believed that once the causes of a problem are critiqued, a solution would soon follow. They had little doubt that solutions would soon be found for every problem, eventually leading to unlimited social progress. But they were upper- and middle-class people who had little sympathy with the workers on the assembly lines in the new industrial plants. They didn't know or care that in a war these lower class people were necessary to the war effort. Nor did they have great sympathy with the newly rich capitalists who were building those plants and becoming millionaires. They assumed that, if both workers and capitalists would abide by middle-class values, there was no need for any economic or social problems. All disparities could be peacefully resolved and easily taken care of.