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The commoner. [volume] (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, December 01, 1915, Image 4

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The Commoner
VOL. 15, NO. 12
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The Commoner
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Tho Atlanta Constitution recently published
an editorial entitled "Don't Want tho Truth."
Wonder if that explains why it treats its readers
as it does.
The south and west are "safe and sane" on
the subject of preparedness. They are in a po
sition to rebuke the east for yielding to the mil
itary "craze."
Tho republicans do not ask much of tho dem
ocrats only that they admit the preparedness
camel's nose into the tent. Tho republicans will
see to it that the camel's body follows.
Mr. Roosevelt spends half his time demand
ing that we go to war with Germany in behalf
of Belgium and the other half advocating the
adoption of Germany's military system.
So, the New York Herald is going to bring out
a candidate against Kitchin, is it? Well, that is
Interesting. Why does not Absentee Citizen
Bennett, owner of the Herald, come back and run
against Kitchin himself?
On another page will be found Savoyard's rid
iculo of one of the pipe dreams which the jingoes
are using to scare the tax payers into spending
money on preparedness. It is an insult to the
intelligence of tho voters.
"DEEDS, not WORDS," Mr. Roosevelt reiter
ates. And the deeds must have an edge like a
sword and a point like a bayonet; they must
have a hair-trigger and be explosive as gun
powder. Now, all ready; fire!
.' The number of republicans who firmly believe
that Ellhu Root is too old a man for the party ,
to nominate for president has materially in
creased since New York defeated the Root con
stitution by so tremendous a majority.
The question before the American people
is: Shall we adopt the European policy of match
ing war dollars with other nations and powers,
or shall we cling to the century-old American
policy which has made us mighty among the na-
tions of the earth?
A Do you notice how the scares are multiplying,
i and how each scare is bigger than the one be
4 fore? First it was said that we might have war
j with some one nation; then it was said that we
might have war with several; now we are told
that the whole world may combine against us!
And the scaro season has just opened. They
ought to have observod the speed limit they
j liave used up all their scare material, and will
1 have to rely on their momentum from now on.
I 0aJi)
t "111 fares tlio land, to hastening ills a
I 0 proy,"
i Where army-navy experts have their
"- way. ,
America's Interest in
"For some probably unreasonable but quite
explicable cause Henry Ford's devotion to efforts
for the restoration of peace in Europe is exas
perating. All the fiutteritig American attempts
to restore Europe to sanity lack the grace and
unction which they seek to manifest.
"In our officious do good attitude we are
put in about as absurd a pose as any sensible
country could wish to avoid. The arrogance
which assumes that this cloistered nation which
seems to be secure from national Ills and which
is about one-tenth as secure as it thinks itself,
has retained the only part of human wisdom, is
"We treat the war as if it were a street brawl.
Heroic people are surrendering everything they
have for the sake of principles which they know
ennoble them, and we, with never an ache or a
pain and with only our war babies in the stock
market to indicate that thdre is a ripple in the
world's economy, stand upon the heights of our
righteousness and beseech the quarreling peo
ples to be reasonable.
"If ever there was a time for a self-respecting
nation to attend to its own business now is the
time for.the United States of America."
The above editorial appeared in the Chicago
Tribune of November 28th. It represents the
attitude of most of the metropolitan papers. The
metropolitan papers almost invariably take the
side of the special interests and at this time the
manufacturers of munitions are specializing in
war. We are now exporting as high, as
$26,000,000 worth of ammunition per month,
and selling it at an enormous profit. It is to the
pecuniary advantage of these Interests to keep
the war going as long as possible, and it is to be
expected that they will scoff at any suggestion
of peace coming from any quarter. When we
remember how indifferent most of the large
newspapers have been to the welfare of the peo
ple of the United States, we can hardly be sur
prised that they are willing to aid those who op
pose peace, because they want to coin into money
the blood and tears of the people of other lands.
The readers of these papers can decide for
themselves whether their editors, in ridiculing
efforts in behalf of peace, are actuated by a de
sire to aid the munition manufacturers, or are
simply ignorant of the interest which our nation,
as a whole, has in the restoration of peace.
If the, attitude of these metropolitan papers is
due to ignorance it will be well for them to ex
amine into the present situation and inquire
whether it is not only our right but our duty to
exert such influence as we may have to bring
the conflict to an eud.
Tho appeal might be made in the interests of
humanity; the unparalleled suffering of an un
precedented war would touch the hearts of these
metropolitan journalists if their hearts had not
been hardened against the appeals which their
own people make for justice in domestic mat
ters, but is it nothing to them that our nation
is suffering at the hands of both sides? Is it
nothing to them that our citizens are being
killed by the submarines of one side while our
trade with neutral nations is being intercepted
and suspended by the cruisers of the other side?
Is it nothing that domestic questions are being
pushed into the background to make way for war
issues? Is it nothing to them that war taxes
are being collected because the European conflict
ha put our fiscal system out of joint? Is it
nothing to them that our nation Is In constant
danger of being drawn into this war with all the
horrible consequences which would follow? And
do they forget our obligations to the other neu
tral nations which, like ourselves, suffer without
bejng to blame?
Is there any rule of logic, of international
law or of morals that compels this nation to
endure present suffering and invite future dan
gers without an effort to protect itself and aid
Other neutral nations?
The American pebble want peace at home and
peace abroad, and they can not be bribed Into
i silence by the fact that a few. big corporation
' fatten on tho woes Wich afflict Europe The
desire of our people for peace- everywhere' is
quickened by the attempt which is now beh
made to use the animosities excited Tndthl
fears aroused by the war to coerce this nation
into vast expenditures for preparedness T7nn
the President feels justified in acting offichiii
the people of the United States will applaud iSS
encourage any individual effort that maybn!
forth in the direction of peace. Where the nur
pose is laudable and where the result if r,M?
able, is a thing to be desired the effort Bhou?d
meet with praise and sympathy rather thin
with, coarse ridicule and abuse. W. J. BRYAN
The Chicago Tribune in its issue of November
25th, presents an interesting illustration of 1o,,r
nalistic egotism. In its first column it admin i"
ters a scathing rebuke to Miss Jane Addams and
Mrs. Henry Ford for presuming to suggest that
those in favor of action by our government look
ing to mediation, should wire tho President
their views. This according to the Tribune in
quite improper. "Would it not," asks the editor
be well for them before dispatching their tele
grams, to consider ''whether even the dis
tinguished ladies they follow have given such
clear evidence of the superiority of their knowl
edge and judgment respecting international re
lations over that of the President that their tele
graphic appeal will be accepted either by the
President or the general public as anything but
an Impertinence?"
Miss Addams is a world character, and has
received respectful attention in the capitals of
Europe as well as throughout the United States,
and Mrs. Ford's name will give weight to her
opinions. Yet the Tribune editor, name not
given, reprimands these peace advocates, and
on the same page proceeds to explain why this
is not a proper time for peace to be proposed.
The Tribune does not address its second editorial
to the President, but contributes to the forming
of that public opinion which must more or less
influence all officials. In other words it presumes
to advise, while criticising others for doing so.
By what logic does an editor, especially one
with, his identity concealed behind a corporation,
claim superior right, authority, or weight to any
other citizen? He does not speak for his readers
he speaks only for himself or for his pay
master. And yet the Tribune editor is a fair
representative of the editors of the jingo press.
They vociferously give instructions to tho Pres
ident every day, and at the same time question
the right of the private citizen to express an
opinion if that opinion happens to differ from
the opinion announced by the representatives of
the special interests. W. J. BRYAN.
Some one has discovered that, as the forts of
New York only protect the city on the water
side, an army might land in New Jersey and cap
ture it from the land. Perish the thought. That
will never do. We must build a wall around the
city. And not to violate the doctrine of equal
rights, must build, a wall around each and every
city, and then a wall around each house. If we
are to be prepared we must take no chances.
The New York World speeds Mr. Ford on his
mission with a farewell cartoon representing
him "in the clouds" steering a Ford auto. It is
to keep a multitude more poor soldiers from go
ing in that direction that he is making his peace
Why not compel the ones
who profit by militarism to
pay the expense of such a
system rather thah shift the
extra burden onto the farm
ers and wage-earners who
are opposed to militarism
and who are already pay
ing more than their share
of the expenses of the government.

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