Newspaper Page Text
:.a&f :vl10lTAVt ill"
ffiE, NATIONAL, TRIBUTE; :-
4j . y , H
Cost of tho Arrears of Ponsion Act.
A groat many people, some anclor tho direct in
spirati&n of the Commissioner of Pensidns.atl rely
ing upon his figures nnu calculations, are bewailing
tho endrmous cost to tho public treasury, arising
from Mift nnssacre of this law.
TtioA-do hot stow' Id consider- whother the law
"Vo care for him who has borne the battle, and, for hi,s wng 5; but 'now that it is lawj' ilicy axtrava-'
vitow.and ori;W.ilniVvuAM Lincoi. niWinriuittmalo" tho manor which' willhave to,
TM validity of the public debt, of the Umtea zuues ' ;V; " , ' '.' ''
iltt3nl8'v . incUulinf, debts incurred ffr payment' be, paid pu,t.: , ., ,:
l ...-.'-. ? ;.oii yVi'i Aaroicts in su1)7)rcssiny tnsur- "mi,Liniir'.'tia neaArl fn nnrrv nut a
Bnloroflat tho Post-Offloo at Washington n art-class matter
wTsiriNoTON, I). 0., JANUARY, 1831.
enTiknlent,lhat if tho sdfdicr enlisting should bo
w6uilubd of disabled 'in' service, by disease, ho
should receive a ponsion'; that if ho died in tho ser
vice, his widow, children, or certain dependent rel
atires, should in like' manner receive a ponsion.
This was the offer made by the Nation and by'
i . . . . , i.
! enlisting in its sbrVico the soldier accepted tho offer
occur fl 'tlie ritfht to
TERMS TO SUBSCRIBERS, PAYABLE, IN ADVANCE
-i POSTAGE PREPAID, ,
One copy-One Year. - - " -. -' 50 Cents
EiveCopios, " : - . - ' ,. . -v'i - - uui
Ten" copies, (Mth .extra copy. ,ty, gettor-up i
' ' s ' i -V 'J -n,ftTft r-nni iinv1 and the contract was complete.
For oycpyJU aubWs wp , weo y9 from nay . . disabilityoc
Jtv-i ." - ! ,.!- . ---..1. .:., 'nvnt.Ai:c! 'nlmrffftfl. rtAMdirvti w.niMirtrl oiirl dninrl fVnm f.lvn moment when
Clock" free, saia party p"-ji"b vv J"" , i"iv" uwiur .. ..-.-- ..-, ..
Heniay setidafew names at a tinie, ab 50 -cents wll0n discharge was given. That the soldier
each arid -whoa the fifteen.- are made up .the-.clock dkVu6fc .y fot. it at nce, thaUo allowed years
will be. forwarded, , , , .. j ( :.!..'.;-.. 5 J to pass before he did apply .does not at all diminish
.JL specimen number of our paper smii fijegrou iu- .. M . . , aeooMinc to his contract. And
e?i . , . ! ; ' ; '''( .::' the " Arrears of I'ension" law simply giivo him an(
...Ter.ms for advertising furnished upon application uni to claim, Wicn tne.' CTnited'
(K. B. See our articlom anptfter column m it.- w?tehn,,f.TiYhhilnnk.Wl'barpod.lbv a statute1
lbs to procure "The iNATiONAii 7 -; -----. -----, T - - f
ril to forming club3 to procure
Teibune clock," in combination with
grcwAL Tribune. ' , J , '' ',
, (J3gr To, Subscribers, Wn changing pour address
piacw giwjorpwr'as well "as present address, with County
and State. , .,,,,,.
' T Talze 2to'tlce.In sending money for subscript
tionilty mail, neveincloselhe currency extept in a regis
tered letter. A postal money order or a draft on Few
York is the best form of remittance: Losses by mail will be
most surely avoided if these, directions arejollowd.
&T 2To responsibility is assumed for subscriptions paid
toiogpntii which must be at tlie risk of the subscriber.
-tlT Communications, subscriptions, and letters upon al
business 'matters relating to Tub National Tribune
should be addressed to
THE NATIONAL TRIBUNE CO.,
;-ji.f ,' "WaslxixiKtoxi. X. 3.
.,:! . Subscriptions.
idfpp single subscriptions, if you cannot get frac
&onai' currency notes, send three-cent and one-cent
BiO. stamps ; but in all cases try tq get one. or more
al&'itional subscribers aud then forward money order
reregistered letter. :,
? . Mark the Bed Wrapper.
"''' ' . '
We again, very specially mention that all who re
ceive their. papers in the red wrapper are informed
that their subscriptions have expired. Kenew at
jonce, all who have not. You cannot do without
The Tribune. '
A Terrible Bugaboo.
; - ! ii.
H;.TohnA. Bontley'd groans and lamentations are
indeed terrible. We are about to be bankrupted.
jNowwhut will be, according to his own estimate,
the yearly payment on account of arrears due sol
diers? Why, about $25,000,000 fifty cents apiece
for each citizen. Isn't it awful? The aggregate
payments he estimates at 120,000,000, or less than
SgMOper citizen. Oh, isn't it awful to be so near
'bankruptcy? But, John, wo have one consolation
riother Shipton says this year will wind up all
terrestrial affairs. . ,
hihiii mini ' i'f "i'i
'" ' - Court of Pensions.
Wtruly hope, that the lion. George W. Gddes,
of Ohio, will succeed in getting his bill through, fos
the creation of a " Oourtjpf Pensions," at tho pres
ent session. We know that thousands of poor, suf
fering soldiers cheer him on to the good work, and
Ul with, heartfelt joy, congratulate him, when his
jui becomes ajaw. Undeniably, ,,thd hill is in tho
, Interest of honesty and humanity, and is in all
reepects a thoroughly practical yay of bringing
up for co n-sideration and aajudicatioh, the thou
sands of cases now causelessly shelved by 'the Com-naisBionor.
of limitation. Under this law a very large number
of claims have been filed ; the sum to be paid to
to these applicants, though small in each case, is quite
larcre in the ag.ores:ate. ' ' ! " r .
But it is the effort of those" in o!u(ihdrity to swell'
this sum into enormous and false proportions. And
Mr. Bentlcy has lent himself willingly to these
schemes, and makes himself responsible tor them by
furnishing false data and therefore false calculations
on 'which 'to rest the unreasonable amount he
claims". ' ' M '
In his letter to Mr. Davis, clikir man of the Com-1
mitteo oh Appropriations, lie!slates two prdpositions
which are the foundation of his hgures, neither or
which is true, and the falsehood of which he was
bound to know.
'Ho grossly and will fully misstates, and ovorstates,'
the existing number of " live claims" pending in his
office. This is, of course, one factor of great im
portance. ' Mr. Bentlov officially states the number of " live
pending claims," at 307,69t. (Page 22 Report of
i860.), ! ' "; :
Yet it appears by his own report' of former years
that nearly, if hot quite, 100,0'00 of these' are not
"live" but dead. " ' ' '' " ' ''
That they are not "pending," but "rejected;"
that they are " settled," " disposed of." These are
his own words in the Reports of 18?818t9 and
Does any cine believe 'that it is ignorance that
makes such criminal "blunders?
' He himself hitherto has classified these claims as
nffhra tVmi. holnno to the " reiccted files." But
for certain purposes of his own he has so managed
his office that there aro no longer any "rejected
files." All cases, good or bad, alive or dead, pend
ing or rejected, aro swept promiscuously together,
aro added up in one immense total, and aro' made
by this false Bystem of hook-keeping the basis of
false estimates to be gravely received and acted
upon by Congress.
Mr. Bontloy know better, and Ooiigress ought td
know better. Thus, then, tho first factor in his es
timate it is shown to be willfully misstated.
Tho second' falsd item is in tho estimate of tho
"life of a ponsion" and tho duration of a soldier's lifo
in receipt of pension. Those two elements of the
number of pensioners, and the probable duration of
each pension aro chief factors to determine tho total
cost, and ought to bo stated with approximate cor
Wo have shown thaVtho first has been willfully
overstated; wo VJjjro't to' say that tiho second is;
more manifestly a deliberate falsification.
Mr. Bentley averages the present ago of tho in
valid pensioner, and places it at 43 years. Ho thon
applies tho " Oarlifclb tables"' an'd finds' Clio oxpodta
ttonoflifo fromthosd tables at that ago' to' bo M
years atid a fraction. Btit even this does' hot sat-
isfy him. Ho assumes 16 add about Uhreo' years & "
the " Carlisle tabids," aiul makes tho average lifb of1
oh invalid pensioner of i8 years, Iwehty-five'ybars
Wttw the Carlisle tables are fdr ihs'jirahfco' tintl ii-
ntiity'purp'osos", and are 'basotl upon thd idea 6faV
ol'agd hdallh in the person' to whom they aro'&p-
iiiicd. - ; ' '
1 But tho pensioners are iot in averago hoalth
they "are more or less' disabled by injuries or diseaaV
(idntratted fifteen' or eighteen years ago1. Therofdrd1
to u'so tlieso tables as a basis 6f an estimate Ss incor
rect. AVe have a bettor test. Mr. Bontloy had a
better test, and -having' it, hold it! back1 and substi
tuted what he knew to be a'fiClsffaiid deceptive ohel
Wc have had iuA'all: lipBn tho rolls 417,000 pon?
siondrs in round numbers. ' Of thdse, many, very1
iminy, have been' added Within sixydars. Thore:
ard ubw only 250,802. What has become of the
160,000 not now on ' the rdlls ? On the " Garhslo1
tables," Mr. Bentldy cannot account for this great
mortality. Oh the known . fact he cah.; . ''."
But we quote Mr. Bentley against Air. Bentley.'
We quote his honest estimate in 1ST 6, aga'ihsS his
partial, prejudiced and FALSE estimate in lfeSli8''
In 18T6 in 'his official report he says : " The avor-'
ago duration of a ponsion is eight years'" "This
was the truth, madoup from observation andbxp'erV
. i i-.it. . t-. m-A :iAA 'AVi't
once in nis'own reuorus, m ins uwu umuu, uu un
time when he had iio -purpose to servo by conceal-
ing the truth, or "by suggesting error. ' :'-
This estimate is rational, natural and correct, ae-"
cords with tho facts and is . about - what every' Than,
conversant with pensioners would agree to. Now,
if you reduce the total number of probable pension
ers, as given by him, by tho largo sum of 100,000,
and reduce tho probable life of the pension from 25
years to 8 years, you arrive at the total cost of'tho
" Arrdars Act," many hundred millions below what
ho has placed it. - l
Yet there are men in Congress, in both Houses
who listen with wide1 ears, open mouths.'and impli
cit belief, to this man who contradicts himself, who'
makes false entries in his books, who adds in all Hi3
dead claims to his living ones, who forcos imposst"
ble calculations upon falso data solely to impress
upon Gongress the necessity of a change which'
would ndt be required if ho would honestly and
candidly administer the law as Congress has here-''
tofdre made it. ' x
Ko such man ought to be at tho head of such &w
office, no man so solf-cdnvicted df official misre'pre
sontation is entitled to the least credonce before
Congress or the Nation. ; '
The Commissioner in the cbaracterof " Humpty,
Wo all of us remember this " extravaganza,
Poor Hura'pty Dumpty, what misfortuno, awkward
always, sometimes, perilous, did he not undergo
Yet run oyer by a policeman, crushed under a
falling tree, dropped into a raging river, over-
whelmed by all manner, ot accidents, ludicrous,
grotesque, and absurd, how his painted face, serene
and expressionless, rose again before tho delighted
audience, and his india-rubber vitality seemed proof
against all ill that "mortals, especially clowns,, are
heirs to. , .M.
Ana such, tq compare great things to i small has
been the fortune. of ;our Commissioner., ' 1:, 4
Asthe original Humpty Ddmpty npvpr flinched
from his blundering pursuit of Harlequin and
Columbine, so our grave and reverend Commis
sioner has never flinched from his devotion to his
pet measure. Starting in 1ST 6, ho has pressed it
on Congress over since, wiui iunu muy io wu
liko and bland." .. - , 4 . , ftf
He argued it laboriously before tho House Com.
mitto on Pensions, whore General Rico was chair
man, and tlioy denounced Mt with a delightful
unanimity, But the irrepressible Commissioner,
driven through the trap-door of tho House, ros
without tho loss of a featherthrough the, trajp-door
o'f tho Sonate. ' . .
Tho Senate Committee ondorsod his plan, but
'the Senate itself, under tho load of Thurmau,