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Newspaper Page Text
WHY BANKS BUST BIG CHICAGO BANKERS
HAVE HAND, SAY LEGISLATORS
"You ask me why banks close their
doors and rob working men of their
savings and make women go crazy;
Well, first of all, it's because some
bankers are personally crooked.
"And the next big reason is that
the banker who -wants to be crooked
has the help of the big successful
banks of Chicago and the big down
state, banks. During my two terms
in the legislature every time a bill
came up to put control of banks in
the hands of the state it was beaten
by, these forces."
This is the way John S. Burns,
state representative from the district
where the wrecked Silver bank did
business, looks at it.
"Fifteen bankers who were mem
bers of the legislature were on the
banking committee," said Burns. "It
was in this committee that the bill
for state control of banks was killed
After seeing Burns a Day Book
man went to three other members of
the legislature. They all agreed with
Burns. A state senator said:
"Promise not to quote me and I'll
tell you why private banks go right
on robbing the people."
"You say it and I won't quote,"
said the reporter.
"Everybody knows these little pri
vate banks running in Chicago and
Cook county are feeders for the big
Chicago banks, said the senator.
"We tried to put through a bill pro
viding for incorporation of all pri
vate banks and financial responsibil
ity of directors. Downstate private
banks were all against it They were
joined by the big banks of Chicago.
They don't want state supervision."
"All this is important," said the re
porter. "Why can't we quote you?"
"You musn't quote me. Not a
word. I might want some money
Senators Bttelson and Baldwin
were In the corporation counsel's
f office in the City Hall. Their views
on the busted Silv.er bank ran like
"The Thon bill in the last legis
lative session called for every private
bank to come -tinder supervision of
the state bank examiner's depart
ment All books and accounts in
every bank in Illinois., would be
thrown open to public scrutiny. The
downstate bankers were a unit
against this legislation.
"If you want to start a bank to
day all you need is a brokerage cer
tificate costing $25. You don't need
to incorporate nor show eood char
acter nor physique. In fact, it's eas
ier to start business as a banker than"
to get onto the police force. To be
come policeman you must at least
snow enough to pass a civil service
examination and a surgeon's scru
tiny. But you can start a bank
without any examination or test of
any sort. All you need is furniture
and a sign."
Both Ettelson and Baldwin say it's
been a desperate battle to get bills
for banking control out of commit
tees for final votes and the -power of
downstate bankers stops any
changes for better in present -conditions.
"I would like to see bank deposits
made as safe as Torrens land
said County Recorder-Joe Connery.
"In the same way that Cook county '
now stands behind land titles and
guarantees their validity, there ought
to be some governmental power x
standing behind bank deposits and
making it absolutely safe for work
ing people to place their money in
private banks. In justice to people
who wish to save their money there
ought to be some plan to make sav
ings safe. The public ofiicials who
sometime, ajid instead of handing me I
the cash loan the bankers would will solve this problem will do a biz
flash this interview." I service."