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People's party paper. [volume] (Atlanta, Ga.) 1891-1898, August 26, 1892, Image 1

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People S Party Paper
VOLUME I.
POWDERLY IN CONGRESS.
ME TELLS OF HIS EXPERIENCE IN
THE NATIONAL LEGISLATURE.
Rowdying* and Riot Rampant Con
duct of So-called Legislators a
Disgrace to the Republic.
As a member of the the third
house I occupied a seat in Congress
•n the day that Thomas E. Watson
aroused the virtuous indignation of
the Democrotic majority by repeat
ing, and emphasizing, a statement
which occurs in his book: “Not a
Revolt; It is a Revolution.” My
scat was directly in front of the
•peaker, and I held a good position
had I desired to catch the eye of the
•peaker. I used to wonder why that
part of the House was labeled “Gen
tlemen’s Gallery,” but I shall never
again have occasion to rise to a point
•f information. The sign “Gentle
men’s Gallery” is placed above that
door so that members of Congress
will not stay in there duiing business
hours ; their place is right in front
of the “gentlemen” and between
them and the speaker. I never
•ould quite understand why the pre
siding officer of the House of Rep
resentatives should be called “The
Speaker,” and what was but a ques
tion in my mind has resolved itself
into a most profound mystery since
that brief experience on the after
noon of July 29. Having had some;
experience in presiding over legisla- |
tive bodies, I acquired the habit of!
eourth’g a-rhirg vote very quickly,
and during the time that Mr. Wat
son occupied his unenviable position
on the congressional gridiron I
•ounted thirty - three members
•tanding up and disturbing
the meeting by “speaking” to one
another; in fact, nearly’all of those
who were on their feet were doing
more speaking than the alleged
speaker. The thirty-three members
who stood up to be counted without
being asked to do so, occupied vari
ous positions, all of them somewhat
different from that which the ver
dant voter pictures in his mind’s eye
when he invades the realm of fancy
to scan the outlines of his ideal con
gressman. Standing before a mass
meeting, addressing the people on
the issues of the day, while inci
dentally appealing for the suffrages
of honest citizenship of the con
gressional district, the candidate for
Congress is neatly dressed in a
Prince Albert coat, patent-leather
■hoes, stylishly-made pantaloons, and
with more or less expense of shirt
front appearing beneath a nicely
fitting collar. He appears the em
bodyment of manly grace and digni
fied statesmanship. With one hand
•lipped inside the flap of his tightly
buttoned coat, and with a roll of pe
titions—for an appropriation for a
post-office building—in the other
hand, our aspirant for Congress
stands the impersonation of the
noblest work of God—and the tailor.
On the day that I looked down on
Congress—l do not mean to reflect
©n that body by saying that I looked
down upon it, and I hope that no
investigating committee will be ap
pointed to inquire why I say this, for
I could not help looking down on
them—they would not let me in on
the ground floor, and I had to take
the elevator and ascend to a point
where I had to look down or not see
them at all. My experience of that
day taught me that it behooves one
to be particularly careful in speaking
about Congress, and I pause just
here to remark that the elevator of
which I speak and the one that
Brother Watson alluded to are two
different kinds of elevators. In jus
tice to myself, being a temperance
man, it is best that I make myself
dear on that point, but I digress,
“Equal Rights to All Special Privileges to None."
and, while digression may be par
doned in Congress, I must stick to
my text. To a new member, as I
was that day, it is very embarrassing
to have to turn to your neighbor and
ask : “What did that man say about
rats?” I was obliged to interrogate
the member next to me on another
occasion when the sounds, “He’s
talking through his hat,” came float
ing up from the sanctuary of the
national pilotage. When I took my
seat Mr. Watson, it appears, was on
his feet attempting to give an expla
nation of the following passage in
his book:
“The Congress now sitting is one illus
tration. Pledged to reform, they have
not reformed. Pledged to economy, they
have not economized. Pledged to legis
late, they have not legislated. Extrava
gance has been the order of the day.
Absenteeism was never so pronounced
L"ck of purpose was never so clear.
Lack of common business prudance
never more glaring. Drunsen members
have reeled about the aisles-a disgrace
to the Republic. Drunken speakers have
debated g ave issues on the floor, and in
the midst of maudlin ramblings have
been heard to ask : “Mr. Speaker, where
was I at ?”
While it is true that Mr. Watson
was called on to explain, it struck
me that the evident intention was to
prevent him from explaining. At
one time, while he was explaining,
thirty-three members of Congress
stood between the two speakers—
Nir. Watson and the other speaker.
If I were under oath now, I could
not swear that any of them were
sober on that occasion, they did not
look like it, and they certainly did
not act like the “grave and reverend
seigniors” whose duty it is to guard
the weal and ward the woe of the
State. Mr. Watson deserves censure
for at least one passage in his book,
lie should not, with his experience,
wonder why any man should ask,
“Where wss I at?” On the con
trary, the man who would not feel
round himself to see if he were
awake and sober in such a crowd,
and while attempting to make him
self heard above that bedlam, would,
it seems to me, be more than ordi
narily gifted. If such a scene as
occurred that day in Congress wore
to take place in the General Assem
bly of the Knights of Labor, we
would shut the doors in sorrow after
having closed the session in disgrace.
If such conduct as manifested itself
on the floor of the National Legisla
ture on the afternoen of July 29
were to occur during a session of our
General Assembly; if thirty three
members were to stand up in differ
ent parts of the chamber—some with
their backs to the presiding officer,
others grouped in knots, others shak
ing their clinched hands at the per
son attempting to address the Hou-e,
others hissing like adders, and all of
them talking aloud or muttering as
the spirit moved them—a vote of
censure on the presiding officer for
incompetency would be in order. I
do not wish to be understood as say
ing that the Speaker of the House of
Representatives is incompetent or
that the Congress sho dd. be charged
with blackguardism, not even infer
entially do I say it, for customs differ
as you travel from home, and the
conduct which would be execrable
in a drawing room would be quite
proper and exceedingly appropria'e
in the Jupanar. As a man’s environ
ments are refinad or vulgar, so will
his conduct shape itself after a time,
and I would not wonder if our own
John Davis should bceome demoral
ized and wonder “Where he was at?”
after a few more terms in Congress.
!It strikes me that “Where was I
at?” is an exceedingly appropriate
question for a man to ask himself
after he has been in Congress a few
months, but in at king the question
he should be particularly careful that
those who can tes ify are not within
sound of his voice, for a truthful an
swer might prove very embarras&ing
ATLANTA, GA., FRIDAY, AUGUST 26, 1892.
to the questioner. Instead of mak
ing such a row over Watson’s charge,
I thought that it would be the grace
ful thing for Congress to pass a reso
lution of thanks to him for not tell
ing the whole truth about that body.
Ido not frequent bar-rooms; have
i invaded the realms of stale beer,
| Congressional tea and vile odors but
I a few times in my life. Even when
! I was Mayor and was obliged to
preside over a court-room full of
plain and ornamented drunks, I
never witnessed such disorderly or
boistorous conduct as furnished the
sequel to Mr. Watson’s innocent
summing up as I witnessed in on
July 29. After Mr. Watson took
his seat the clerk read some “Senate
Bills,” and then each member seemed
as if possessed by a fiendish desire
to scatter himself all round the
room. No one paid the slightest
heed to what was being read, and
not one in ten could tell “where he
was at” when the clerk finished read
ing. I know it was warm and that
something more cooling than the
roasting that Mr. Watson had ad
ministered would be appreciated, but
then the dignity of the republic,
which these men were so vigorously
defending against the assaults of
Watson’s book, should have been
kept in mind for a few brief moments
after the wave of indignation had
fanned the heated, broad, thick,
massive skulls of our national law
crea’ors. Why Senate Bills should
not be listened to no one could tell
me. How any man, not gifted with
supernatural powers of perception
or intuition, can sit in Congress and
know what is being done is to me a
mystery.
If Congress ere a circus ring, if
the members represented a menage
rie, and if law making and money
appropriating n ere but a light and
frivous joke, I could understand
such antics as I saw that day. One
man thrust his feet above his head
yawned until the lining of his stom
ach reflected the subdued light
which changed color as it came
through the stained glass and found
itself—as I found myself—in Con
gress. Another chewed on the end
of an unlit cigar, while ever and
anon he ran his fingers through his
hair in search of an idea—or some
thing. Another, oblivous to the in
fernal din around him, sat reading a
a book, and as he read he took time
to laugh occasionally, but whether
his menment was occasioned by what
he read or the show that it cost his
neighbors $5,000 to turn him loose
in did not appear. Two others stood
to the left of the speaker shaking
their hands at each other—not as
though they intended to fight, for
Congressmen only challenge each
' other to fight—and all at once they
' shot out of the chamber as if a
honey factory had started up in
their neighborhood and the honey
makers had intimated that they
wanted more room. Perhaps they
only retired to inquire where they
were at. One member strode into
the chamber daring the debase and
then strode out again, as if he sud
denly remembered that he was in
the wrong house. I saw him long
1 enough to be able to testify that he
did not have the appearance of a
graduate from the Keely Institute.
Ido not know whether he is the
Cobb who has since then been con
victed of d/inking Congressional tea,
and, perhaps, he might have been
sober after all.
I fear that Mr. Watson’s sense of
the ridiculous is not very keen. He
could not have appecia.ed the humor
of his surroundings, or he would not
have stated that drunken speakers
debated in Congie*s. As I saw
Congress, it stmek me that the only
one who wou’d attempt to speak be
fore that body would have to be
drunk, for a man in his sober senses
would hesitate long before testing
his lungs above the clapping of
hands, the jeers of the members and
the hisses of those who thought that
ariy sentiment, good or bad, could
be smothered or drowned in the
hissing of serpents or geese. Wat
son said: “They have not reform
ed.” Os course not. The man
must have been insane to expect
such a thing. They do not apply
the gold cure in Congress. This
talk of economy with other people’s
money is all rot to the average leg
islator. He goes there to make
himself solid with his constituency,
and the average constituency is just
as dishonest as its representative,
for it requires that he drive his fin
gers to the botton of the national
purse in order to dredge the river
next to his home or to erect a pub
lic building over a town so that
some speculator may sell the sur
rounding territory to good advant
age. Thomas E. Watson entered
Congress an honest man. He went
there expecting that patriotism and
not pelf would be the actuating im
pulse, and he has had the scales torn
from his eyes. He should have
known better than to expect such
things of a Congress elected on an
issue between two vultures whose
only essential point of difference lies
m the fact that one has its talons
around the vitals of the nation, and
the ether would take hold in its
stead. For its own sake, I hope
that Congress was drunk the day I
saw it. I would rather know that
men acted the rowdy while drunk
then ,do it in their sober sense.
Whether drunk or sober, honest or
dishonest, that body on the after
noon, was just what Thomas E.
Watson styled it—“a disgrace to the
Republic.” And if each voter in
the United States could but look on
at the spectacle, could he see Con
gress as I saw it, he would fear for
the perpetuation of institutions com
mitted to the care of such a gather
ing of partisan shoutersr.
T. V. Powderly.
The Ventura (Cal.) Unit of August
10th says:
The Democratic central committee
of Los Angeles county appointed a
sub committee of nine to wait upon
the People’s Party convention which
met in Los Angeles last Saturday
and confer with that body in regard
to fusion on the local ticket. The
convention had no proposition
to offer and the committee retired
without getting any encouragement.
It seems difficult to make the old par
ties understand that fusion is impos
sible. Our contest is not a mere
scramble for offices. There are prin
ciples involved which would be sac
rificed by combination with either
Republicans or Democrats, and in
forming such alliances we should de
grade our party to the level of pol
itical tricksters whose only idea is to
capture the offices. Let us keep in
the middle of the road and maintain
our self respect. Success will come
in good time, and success by any
other road would be valueless.
Once-a-Weekof Stephenville, Tex.
says:
Those who fear the votes of the
employes of the state and federal
governments if the railroads should
pass into the hands of the govern
ment, should get up some remedy,
not find faults and objections all the
time. How would it do to disfran
chise both state and federal employes
while they draw pay from the govern
ments. Not allow a postmaster or
other government employe to vote.
How does that strike you? It can
be made constitutional.
The New York Mail and Express
says:
It is somewhat to the credit of
Bergman, the Anarchist, that he has
not yet produced a letter from Gray
Gables sympathizing with his efforts
to strike down a “tariff baron.”
Money is not property, neither is
properly money. Money is created by
law, properly is created by labor.
is anything that will extin
guish a debt at the will of the debtor
without the consent of the creditor,
hence ail money is flat money. There
can be no money but fiat money. —So.
Mercury.
Proceedings State Alliance.
The fifth annual session of the <
Georgia State Alliance met in the
Opera House at Gainesville on the
morning of the 17th, at 10 o’clock
with President Livingston in the chair.
The Alliance was opened in due from,
prayer by Chaplain Davies.
The report of the credential commit
tee was read and adopted. The dele
gation was full, showing a live interest
in the organization.
President Livingston delivered his
annual address, which was followed by
a short address from Acting Presiden t
W. A. Wilson,
The roll of officers was then called
and most of the officers responded.
Rev. 11. R. Davies, Dr. J. W. Taylor
and Mr. A. A. Stephens were ap
pointed a press committee.
The executive committee made their
report which was adopted. Mr. H.
L. Smith moved, to amend the report
by making the pay of the delegates
two dollars per day instead of one as
recommended by the committee which
was adopted.
The convention, by motion, ordered
the expenses of the delegates to the
St. Louis conference paid.
On motion the district lecturers and
Editor of The Southern Alliance
Farmer were extended the privileges
of the floor.
Resolution by Bro. McDaniel chang
ing the time of electing the delegates
o o o
to the State Convention from the Jan
uary meeting to the July meeting of
the County alliances. Unanimously
carried.
By Bro. McGairity:
Resolved, That the State Alliance
now in session, endorsed The South
ern Alliance Farmer, as our of
ficial organ.
Resolved 2nd, That we endore the
editorial management of M. D. Irwin.
Resolved 3rd, That we select The
Southern alliance Farmer as
our official organ for the ensuing year
and that we hereby elect M. D. Irwin
as our editor.
Resolved 4th. That we endorse the
editorial course of our national organ,
The National Economist.
These resolutions were brought forth
by report of the paper committee, sub
mitted by Calvin and Livingston on
the part of the majority and C. 11. Ell
ington on the part of the manority.
Pending the discussion of the resolu
tion the Alliance adjourned until eight
o’clock.
night session.
On reassembling the convention
took up the paper matter again. The
discussion lasted until eleven o’clock,
when R. H. Kelley introduced the
following resolutions as a substitute for
the whole:
Resolved, That the past course pur
sued by The Southern Alliance
Farmer be endors id by the State Al
liance, and that we earnestly request
its editor to advocate the principles
and purposes for which the Alliance
was organized, and let the paper be
truly an educator of the people as out
lined by the ritual and constitution in
a non-partisan spirit: Provided that
nothing in said resolution shall be an
endorsement of any political party, but
of the principles of this order as advo
cated in the said paper.
This resolution was introduced by a
strong reformer. After the full dis
cussion of the question, the original
resolution would have passed by three
to one, but Editor Irwin at the critical
moment stepped forward and asked
his friends to support the substitute
which fully vindicated his editorial
conduct of the official organ. This
action on the part of Editor Irwin
calmed the convention and all was
harmony afterwards. The original
resolutions were withdrawn when Ir
win accepted the substitute. The res
olution was ordered printed in The
Southern Alliance Farmer.
The convention then adjourned to
meet next morning at 8 o’clock in the
court house which had been tendered
by the sheriff of Hall county.
SECOND DAY.
The convention met according to
adjournment and was opened by
prayer.
Minutes of previous day read and
approved.
The hour having arrived for the an
nual election of officers, Rev. J. W.
McGarity put in nomination Hon. C.
H. Ellington, of McDuffie, for presi
dent. He was elected by acclamation
as president.
Hon. \V. E. 11. Searcy was elected
vice president of the Stalfe Alliance
for the ensuing year.
NUMBER 48
The following officers were then
elected:
Secretary, A. W. Ivey; treasurer,.
W. A. Broughton; State lecturer,
Rev. S. A. Walker; assistant leeturer,
J* L. Gilmore; chaplain, 11. IL Davi&j
doorkeeper, J. M. Bruee; assistant
doorkeeper, F. IM. Waddell; sergeant
at-arms, A. G. Daniel; Dr. J. W. Tay
lor member of the executive.
DISTRICT LECTURERS.
Ist—ll. L. Smith, Merrett.
2nd—J. E. Dikes, Colquitt.
3d—Allen Kenyon, Lumpkin.
4th—J. W. Wilson, Hamilton.
sth—W. S. Hubbard, Conyers.
6th—S. C. McCandless, Jackson..
7th—J. W. McGarity, Day.
Sth—W. Y. Carter, Hartwell.
9th—J. R. Henderson, Cumming.
10th—II. E. Strother, Amity.
11th—J. M. Pofferd, Willacoochee,
the section after the words “for such
service” in line live and inserting
“shall be $3 for each county visited.
The said counties to bear the trav
elling expenses of said lecturer.
President C. 11. Ellington and John-
Cunningham were elected as delegates
to the national convention from the
state at large, and L. F. Livingston
and J. D. McGee were elected as delc
gales to the national convention of the
Alliance.
The new elected officers were then -
installed, and the convention adjourn
ed to meet at 2 o'clock in the opera
i house. This adjournment was made
1 to give the old soldiers the court house
to hold a re-union.
The report of the executive com
mittee was read and adopted. It pro
vided for the following salaries:
President, 81,000; secretary, 81,50®;
chairman of executive committee*
8400; treasurer, 8200; state lecturer,
83 per day while in the field; district
, lecturers 83,00 for each county visited;
' doorkeeper, assistant doorkeeper and
' ‘ s?a , .nt at arms,Ls3 } (l® per day during
the session.
AFTERNOON SKSSION.
Meeting called to order promptly by
President Ellington. As usual at lasX
session of the convention, businegn
was finished up, prov sions made for
printing and distributing proceedings
and all matters disposed of for eariy
ing out the work for next year.
All business on hand being disposed
of at 4 o’clock p. m., motion was made
and carried to adjourn.
The Gainesville Meeting.
The convention of county trustee
Stockholders met at 10 o’clock. Most
of the stock was represented.
The annual report of the president,
manager and board of directors was
read, and after being referred to a
special committee, was adopted.
A full and complete account of th®'
proceedings was ordered printed and
forwarded to each county trustee s toek
hokh r, and a certificate of stock be
issued to each sub-Alliance for the
amount already paid in.
The following gentlemen were elect
ed as directors:
Wm, L. Peck, Conyers, state at'
large.
W. H. Wood, Mannasses, First dis
trict.
R. M. Brown, Fort Gaines, Second’
district.
W. A. Wilson, Americus, Third
district.
D. B. Wells, Draneville, Fourth
district.
J. T. Davenport, Douglasville, Fifth>
district.
W. E. H. Searcy, Griffin, Sixth dis
trict.
L. S. Ledbetter, Cedartown, Sev
enth district.
W. A. Broughton, Madison, Eighth >-
, district.
11. P. Riden, Cumming, Ninth dis
trict.
J. L. Lingo, Commissioner, Tenth -
; District.
W. E. Ecord, Homerville, Eleventh »
► district.
After the meeting adjourned, the
board met and accepted the resigna
tion of Colonel Peek as president and
manager, and elected Wm. A. Brough
, I ton, president, L. S. Ledbetter, man
' ager and the bookkeeper was made
secretary and treasurer.
The meeting was harmonious, and;
i all pledge themselves to the support of
! the great object for which the exchange
; was created.
I “With a few more advances of thig’
I sori,” remarks the Windsor (Vt.) Jonr
’ ria’, concerning the price of coal as de
creed by the Reading combine, “per
i haps ape »ple’s combine will’ be ia-
I order.” Such a combine will indeed*
;be in order but it is a little surprising
. to find » he prediction in a Vermont re-’
I publican paper.

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