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ifc! !,jv 4 ontftfy $?ur.nai devoted to the interests of the oldiers and (Bailors of the late war, and all pensioners of the J$nited (States. u Lepage e. lemon & co.,yOL j No 2 WAHltfG.TOJST, P.dfctSTpVEMBBR, 1877, G u tJUditors and Proprietor. i " ' r ?" a -' S. tu 6tfctl,;'fc f. TERMS, 02TE DOLLAR PER YEAR, r Single Copies, 10 Cents In currency or postage stamps. Uutored nccordiuKto Act of OonEroHhlu Ihoyohf ofoui-LOrd.1877. bvGERrtKE. IJKM0H& Co.. lu tlib OlHce of tho Ijlbrjrimi of. Cougroee, at Wellington, D.O. ,-..( ' ' ; -- -- --.-Mim" . H' ' ' ' ' ' ' u " . il i m ii I ii , b i ii I mi i ,, -. - l.l...flf glTJT. -- A. .. ..-. . .mi n i . ii.H .. f.fc iw5 J- TS'ThiE COUNTRY TOO POOR TO PAY ITS SOL- DIERS? e.hear it advanced by those who are opposed tbithepassage of the bill to equalize bounties, that thtbuhiryis too rioor too poor to pay its honest debis 'io. itie soldiers who saved it. Let us see. ( ." ' Mil' J 'li' Ir,om tho 10th day of March, 187.7, when he look hisplaec at the'head of the Finance Depart ment of the Government, to file 1st day of November, less than height months, Secretary Sherman boasts that he has reduced the public debt forty five milllion dollars, and at the 1st of JTCnuarV, iifter having control of the finances less than ten months, he expects to be able to say, thatJjQi has -reduced it sixty million 'dollars, or three per cent.-- of the entire bonded debt of the UiiitSa States. " ' ' ' This debt has no, matured. .jTha Government was not obliged to pay-this forty-five million during the last eight months, but, like a very m milium, .one hundred thousand men served (or that length xf. time, beciuise the greater part of the enlistments for a thre&year's time took place in the latter days of the ifyor. Less than one-half of these, he considers, are entitled to bounty under this bill, and, in .lj874, he gave it as his official opinion to the anilitary committee oft the blouse, that twenty million dollars, at the' most, would be all that is required. ; The Paymaster Genergjof the army places his estimate at twenty-eighj millions, and roaches this opinion by a diftereftf system tfi calculation than that used by' the Adjutant General. Ho shows from the records off his office that 385,- St 970,681 has already been 'paid to soldiers in the shape of bounty money. 1 Taking Adjutant Gen eral Townsend's estimate.qt' the number of troops employed for three years, he shows that 440, 000,000 would be necessaVy to pay all of them a bounty of eight and one third dollars per month. This would leave about 54,000,000 as the difter- generous creditor, Secretary Sherman is hasten-1 once between what has bjien paid, under the ex- mg to pay it beiore it is due. Every citizen j isting bounty laws. au what would be due shpiu&, of course, take great pride iu this achieve-; under the pending bill. jBut he estimates further mciifebttt it contradicts the arguments that'are brought forward against the bountv bill, that the Government is too poor. Tt is the soldiers who are poor. Those who served in the rank and file of our army during the war, and when the struggle ended, went back to their work-shops and their farms, tt is they who are poor. What inan of them who owes m&uev. is able, like the Government, to pay his debts before they are due ? "Wliile every one should encourage the reduction of the liabilities of the Government as fast as is possible, there are other debts beside those due the bond-holders that the Government should pay. It owes eight and one-third dollars a month for every month's Service, to each soldier who fought to preserve the Union. Some of this debt has been paid. Many soldiers received their bounty when they enlisted, but that makes it the more essential that those who have received nothing, but who fought just as well, should also be paid: jTow how much will this bounty bill cost? That is a question in the wildest dispute. Those who oppose the bill, estimate the sum at hun dreds of millions of dollars, but this is a wild absurdity, not tolerated for a moment by anyone familiar with the facts, and the records of the service. Adjutant General Townsend, who had charge of rthe enlistments 'during the war, and has since beeipit the, head of the Adjutant General's office, is the most competent, and, in fact, the1 only competent authority on this subject. lle places the aggregate amount qf nipngy necessary to equ.ali.J5Q bounties,, as provided, for in ,a bill we give elsewhere, at only twenty -millions of dollars. HesTfcws.lVom tu'e records of the- army, that the niW)eV, ,Pi ,men, 3$. UAstd.for,, x)Q,yteiU'8, wari(i8-nearlyi as-oaiuibe estimated, two millions, forty-two thousand one hundred and fifty.1 13ut it is not believed by him, that more than one tliar at' feist 000 "ilSntvere noT entitled to bounty, which would reduce this difference to about twenty-eight millions. To those of us who measure our incomes by. the hundreds of dollars, these seem enormous figures. But stop, and think that the revenues of the Government amount to hundreds of mil lions every year ; consider that Secretary Sher man has been able in less than eight months to reduce the public debt forty-five millions, besides paying the expenses of the Government and the interest on the outstanding debt, and the amount will not seem so large. The saving that Secre tary Sherman has made in four months would pay the entire amount required under this bounty bill. The saving that he expets to make in ten months would pay it three times over, and yet they say that the Government is too poor to give its solcliers what it justly owes them. These are not idle figures. These calculations are not made for sport, but they are as actual, as real as the multiplication table, and they de mand attention. It will not become necessary to pay the entire amount required from the Treasury in a single month, or a single year, or in five years, but the payment of claims that will come in from tho soldiers, if this bill is passed, will require a number of years, because so much investigation and examination and clerical labor will be necessary to find out what claims, are genuine and which are fraudulent. Allowing that it would take only ten years to pay all these claims, and allowing that the amount of money .required would be twenty-eight millions, (tho most liberal estimate,) it would only necessitate flie expenditure of two millions, eight hundred thousand dollars a year, which is .about half as .much as Secretary Sherman saves every month. Surely this sum might justly be devoted to re wai'ding the gallantly and paying the just dues of the country to its soldier citizens. ARREARS OF PENSIONS. - , f " Jtur- The matter of paying arrears of pensions has again come before Congress, in a bill which prcP vides, that all pensions which have been or may, hereafter be granted in consequence of death- uuuuiniig uuuj i uuuat; wuwu uiigiimuju in uju service of the United States since March 4, 186). orin consequence of wounds or injuries received or disease contracted since said date, shall begin from the date of death or discharge from the .'. in service, of the person on whose account the claiuiT has been or shall hereafter be granted, or from the termination of right of the person having prior title to such pension, provided that thS limitation herein prescribed shall not apply to , claims by or in behalf of insane persons or minor,, children of deceased soldiers. The bill also pro vides, that upon tne passage of the act, the Coin missioner of Pensions shall cause a copy of the s' same to be furnished each pension agent, whose duty it shall be to inform each pensioner upon his roll who shall be entitled to arrears of pen sion under this act: and it shall be the further du,ty of the Commissioner of Pensions to pay, or cause to be paid to such pensioners, or, if the pensioner shall have died, to the. person or per sons entitled to the same, ail such arrears of pen sions as the pensioner may be entitled to, or, if! dead, would have been entitled to under the prq visions of the first section of this act. had he or she survived. The defects in die present law, which this is intended to rectify, are very plain, and it needs no argument to convince a person familiar with the pension laws of the justice and necessity of the passage of some such measure. As the laws npw stand, many liviug soldiers, and the widows and orphans of many dead soldiers, are deprived of what is justly due them, because, from igno rance, or neglect, or from some other reason, they may have failed to apply for a pension within the limit of time prescribed. If soldiers or then dependents are entitled to pensions at all, it is just that they should be granted from the time of death, or from the time of discharge from the service. The laws, as they now stand, are, as far as they go, eminently just. It is not bad lawTs that soldiers Complain of, but restricted laws, incomplete laws, passed when the subject of pensions was not understood, and the needs of pensioners had not become fully apparent. When a soldier was disabled from wounds r& ceived in battle, or from disease contracted '.in' the service, he was discharged, thrown upon his own resources, or the charity of his friends. ItW he neglected at once to apply for a pension it does not follow that he deserved none," 'If'a'11 widow was left helpless, and did notj a oncen( apply for a pension, it does not- lessen her claim upon the Government. Congressmen concede' this: no one denies the justness of this hill, buff4 tne aeuvy in its passage is aue to me iact um precedence is given other matters, often of Jess importance. "H'TOg HjytHH Wjiiwwi 11" yyy lYrwm wwfg w 4jftPWrw Wffm BK& " . 5 "." i 'WOW 1 ' , V" tmikiif,vmwf WT II WWIMffi'l'l -. , : - i '