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The Butler County press. [volume] (Hamilton, Ohio) 1900-1946, December 18, 1931, Image 1

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045012/1931-12-18/ed-1/seq-1/

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VOL. XXXI. No. 36
Washington, I). C. (ILNS)—Con
gress has convened and the presi
dent's message has been delivered.
Ranking in importance With the
message is the liberalization of house
rules, under the democratic regime in
that end of the capitol, and the out
look for an early test of strength on
the Volstead modification issue, with
its far-reaching employment possibili
The presidential message threw an
issue of tremendous proportions into
the arena. It proposed creation of
an emergency reconstruction finance
corporation with a capital stock of
$600,000,000, with authority to issue
debentures or other obligations up to
$1,500,000,000, which translated into
Words is one billion five hundred mil
Iron dollars.
The purpose of this enormous cor
poration, patterned After the finance
corporation, but with "broader" pow
ers, is to stimulate or provide credit
to absorb the "shocks" that have re
bounded against American business
from foreign nations.
Small Fraction's Power
The "shocks" that have thus re
bounded have come from a fraction
of our total industrial volume never
put at more than 10 per cent and
probably nearer 4 per cent.
The ridiculous situation that per
mits a fraction so small to reverber
ate so enormously has not been prop
erly explained. It is made to serve an
altogether exaggerated purpose.
The gigantic corporation proposed
by the president will, if set up, un
doubtedly put vast new credit into the
industrial arena and stimulate indus
trial operations, but in so doing it
will add to the power, prestige and
profit of the great banks and financial
institutions that admittedly saw the
1929 collapse coming and failed to act
in the direction of prevention and
that then proceeded to urge wage re
ductions, putting the penalty upon the
shoulders of the workers.
The message points out that in the
rear there have been revolutions in
Hoover Message Offers
Mountain of Credit, But
Evades Purchashing Power
A Basket
Filled With
TvTOTHING can possibly make a more
practically or more appreciated gift
than a basket filled with Fort Hamilton
Foods. Such a gift would indeed show
a thoughtfulness on your part if pre
sented in some worthy home.
There are many Fort Hamilton Foods
and food products to select from—and
every one is of that standard of excel
lence that has made Fort Hamilton so
popular wherever good foods are eaten.
Your Individual
Will gladly make up such a basket
from your own selection of Fort
Hamilton Foods whenever you
may say the word.
The E. H. Frechtling Co.
Distributors of Fort Hamilton Foods
19 countries, Inability to meet obli
gations in 10, and abandonment of
former monetary standards in 14. It
then declares that our difficulties have
arisen "in large degi-ee" from these
(foreign) sources.
Hope for Recovery
"A strong America is the highest
contribution to world stability," says
the message in one of its high spot-s.
And hope is found in the assertion
that "we can make a large measure
of recovery independent of the rest
of the world."
Expenditures on public works this
year will, it is asserted, reach a total
of $780,000,000, three times the 1928
These statements indicate improved
conditions. They indicate the freeing
of credit, the spending of money and
a wholly new concentration on Amer
ican industrial unity as a thing apart
from the rest of the world. But they
do not mention purchasing power and
they do not contain the seeds of meas
ures necessary to prevent a recur
rence of expression and they do little
more than hint at the possibility of an
America enabled to stand above the
rest of the world, so placed as to pre
vent 4 per cent of its business from
again disrupting the remaining 90 per
Labor, except for unemployment, is
not mentioned in the message. There
is no reference to establishment of
rights now denied, no reference to
any labor objective, and yet there are
points of agreement with labor, as in
the definite opposition to the dole.
Washington.—The average size of
the family in the United States de
creased from nearly five in 1890 to
a trifle over four in 1930, according
to a statement by the U. S. Bureau
of the Census. The exact figures are
4.9 persons per family in 1890 and
4.1 in 1930.
Read the Press.
•A Most Practical
Christmas Suggestion
IrJilfii ."AV.'.TC^."4.-)
Chicago, 111. (ILNS)—The 1,500
representatives of the organized rail
road workers of the nation, meeting
here, have declined to walk into the
outstretched arms of the railroad
wage cutters, which have gladly pock
eted a $120,000,000 rate increase and
which may be further helped by the
present congiess, but which are
nevertheless driving forward toward
a wage reduction demand.
The general chairmen who compose
this big session have studied the field
intimately and carefully and have ex
emplified a generalship that is strik
ing and baffling to the l'ailroads. The
union leaders put the next move
squarely up to the railroads. The
roads have let it be known that they
would like to have the unions volun
teer to take a 10 per cent cut, but the
unions decline to thus shave down the
purchasing power of the transporta
tion industry.
Unions Press Programs
The unions are perfecting the
strategy they will follow if and when
the roads make the next move, which
they are confidently expected to make,
unless reason comes to them sooner
than is generally hoped for. Mean
while, also, the unions are concentrat
ing upon their employment stabiliza
tion program, by which they offer a
means of relieving the condition under
which a half million railroad workers
are idle. Added to the half million
idle is another half milion on part
This program calls for a six-hour
day, a guarantee of employment for
the next year and joint action on such
problems as motor transportation and
protection of all interests in consoli
Crucial Point Nears
The transportation world has mov
ed nearer to the crucial point which
must mark either a tremendous joint
effort to restore transportation bal
ance and prosperity or an effort by
the roads to effect a policy helpful to
I'm Sure There Is a
Decline to Accept Bid of Managers
Employment Stabilization Proposal Mapped By General
Chairmen in First Meeting of Its Kind Since Session
in 1921.
Something of a guide to railroad
inclinations was furnished the day be
fore the opening of the big confer
ence of 1,500 general chairmen, when
the Illinois Central announced a 10
per cent pay reduction for all em
ployes not covered by union agree
ments. A similar announcement was
made by the Southern Pacific rail
road. At the same time the roads
announced that negotiations would be
opened to bring about reductions of
a like amount for union employes.
VVaymen Take Strike Vote
Such negotiations probably would
lead to the appointment of a special
emergency board by the president. An
emergency board is expected to follow
the strike vote being taken by the
maintenance of way employes cover
ing that organization's members on
the Chicago & Northwestern. Tho
fact finding board, under the railroad
labor act, must report to the presi
dent who then is obliged to make
the finding public. These steps are
provided by the law to follow failure
of the railroad mediation board.
The general chairmen here are con-
Rail Unions Shape Strategy
To Meet Wage Cut Issue
fronted by a most serious situation,
not the least important phase of which
is a general public misunderstanding
of the case. It is the first time such
a meeting has been held since 1921.
It follows feelers put out by a num
ber of roads on the wage reduction
issue, in addition to the direct steps
now taken by the Illinois Central.
Long-Time Proposals
Widespread unemployment has
made the railroad union situation ex
tremely serious. Moreover, the un
ions find that the average compensa
tion is about $1,369 per year, which is
about the general average of all in
dustrial wages. The railroad unions
went into the conference on a pro
gram of long-time proposals and im
mediate measures. The four long
time proposals are:
1. An elective federal compensa
tion law to indemnify against occu
pational accidents and diseases.
2. A federal law to provide retire
ment insurance.
3. Provision for the payment of a
dismissal wage in all cases of per
manent dislocation of experienced
4. Provision for payroll reserves to
take care of exceptional periods of
reduced traffic, which would provide
workable and economic substitute
for unemployment insurance.
Dividends and Capital Get
"Staggering Dispropor
tion" of Profits, Bringing
Economic Unbalance,Gov
ernor Says.
Washington, D. C. (ILNS)—Mar
shalling figures to show a startling
concentration of wealth in the hands
of the few in recent years, Governor
Gifford Pinchot, of Pennsylvania, told
the District of Columbia League of
Women Voters that a "staggering
disproportion" of profits have been
going to dividends and capital, while
the worker did not get even a reason
able share.
"This is no wild guess," Gov.
Pinchot continued. "This is fast with
figures to support it. Dr. Julius Klein,
assistant secretary of commerce
tells us that in the decade ending in
1929, real wages increased only 13 per
cent, while the returns to all industry
increased 72 per cent. Where did
this 72 per cent come from but out of
the spent wages of the millions and
millions of working men? In the
same period, Doctor Klein tells us
the dividends on industrial and rail
stocks increased by 285 per cent—22
times as fast as wages. Is it any
wonder that the crash of depression
"Building Toward Disaster"
Figures for the years since 1920 tell
ati too vividly the story of a nation
i y V V V i v V 7
building toward disaster by unbal
ancing its economic equilibruim, Gov.
Pinchot declared. He added:
"On March 20 of this year, the Na
tional Industrial Conference Board
published in its bulletin figures repre
senting the total income of the nation
for several years back. In 1920 we
made over seventy-four billion dollars.
In 1928 we made eighty-one billion
dollars. In eight years we had in
creased our income by a little less
than one-tenth.
'But the treasury department's
latest annual statistics of income re
veal some particularly interesting
things to compare with that one
tenth. In 1920 there were 3,649 peo
ple who had incomes of over $100,000.
In 1928 that number had jumped to
15.977. It had doubled and then
doubled again and was still going up.
Incomes of Few Soared
'In 1920 those people made a total
of over 727 million dollars. But in
1928, those who had the hundred thou
sand dollar incomes and up received
about four and a half billion dollars,
more than six times as much money.
And all this, remember, while the in
comes of all our people increased one
lone tenth of its previous figure.
"Then how about the men who re
ceive a million a year? In 1920 theiv
were 33 of them, and they got 77 mil
lion dollars. In 1928 there were 511
of them, 15 times as many, and they
got over a billion dollars, or 14 times
as much. The national income had
meanwhile increased by one-tenth.
"Certainly Got Their Share"
"Finally, look at our fellow-citizen
who get a paltry five million a year
In 1920 there were four of them and
they collected not quite thirty million
dollars. But by 1928 they had added
22 new members to their exclusiv
circle, and the 26 of them were forced
to get along with an income of a lit
tle over 250 million dollars between
'In other words, in the eight-yeai
period between 1920 and 1928, whil(
the total national income increase i
less than 10 per cent, the number of
men with incomes of over a million
dollars, for instance, increased ov«:
1400 per cent, or 140 times as fas
And the amount of money these men
made in one year increased 1300 per
cent, or 130 times as fast as the totnl
amuont of money made by everybody
in the whole of the United State
They certainly got their share."
Acting New York Governor
Orders Workers Protected
Albany, N. Y. (ILNS)—Aroused by
reports of bad living conditions on
state construction jobs, acting Gov
ernor Lehman has ordered the public
works, labor and health department
to co-operate in guarding the into
ests of the workers.
A Buffalo newspaper recently
charged that workers on the Attic
prison job lived in unsanitary shacks
paid exorbitant sums for rent and
board and were tempted to expend
their wages on liquor and gambling
Other cases of bad conditions were re
ported on highway work near Glen
Falls and Plattsburg.
A local couple is saving money by
keeping a daily account book. By the
time they get it all fixed up in the
evening it is too late to go anywhere
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Citing Declaration for
Atlanta, Ga. (ILNS) Advising
elimination of "shyster methods," as
serting that "a house cleaning" seems
necessary, and urging the end of cut
throat methods, President Roy Le
Craw, of the Atlanta Chamber of
Commerce, has addressed a stinging
letter to Hugh Roberts, executive
secretary of the Georgia Branch of
the Associated General Contractors of
President Le Craw by his letter
puts the Atlanta Chamber of Com
merce "way out in front" and strikes
a terrific blow at the union-hating
contractors from Southern states who
have gone into Northern States to cut
wages on federal contract work.
President Le Craw declares that his
organization has conferred with un
ion representatives and he declared
the Chamber is for "fair and reason
able wages."
'The Atlanta Chamber of Com
merce is definitely on record in favor
of 'fair and reasonable' wages
through our 'Declaration of Inten
tions,' which we have sponsored and
circulated," he said in his letter.
'This declaration has been signed by
approximately three hundred business
concerns of our city, both commercial
and industrial, who have pledged
themselves to strive to maintain a
fair wage scale and to make no fur
ther reductions in the number of their
Three Groups of Builders
"From all the information we can
gather, it seems that there are three
general groups of building contractors
operating in Atlanta. First: A group
who pay the union wage scale. I un
derstand that the government accepts
this scale as the 'prevailing wage
scale.' Second: Your group of con
tractors, a number of whom I am in
formed submitted five or six different
wage scales in bidding recently or an
Atlanta contract. These, I believe,
ranged from very low up to nearly
the union scale. Third: A group of
so-called 'curbstone' contoactors who
submit bids based on practically star
vation wage scales which take advan
tage of the present unemployment
situation and the desperate plight of
carpenters, plumbers, laborers, etc. I
They will all say
"Just What I Wanted"
Atlanta Business Scores
Low Wage Contractors
this a Furniture Christmas and you are sure to
please everyone. Furniture gifts not only please each
individual recipient but they bring beauty and comfort into
the home which all inav enjoy! Thus, a big lounging chair
for "dad" will please him immensely because it contributes
to his comfort, beautifies the home and can also be shared
with others. A Lamp for "Mother" will shed its cheerful
radiance throughout the room and make it more pleasant for
evory member of the family circle. Give Furniture this
Christmas and you will hear them all say, "Just what I
wanted." Here are a few suggestions:
Philco Radios $36.50
Magic Chef Stoves $39.75
Semi Venetian Mirrors $3.95
Handsome Occasional Chairs $9.95
Drop Leaf Butterfly Tables $6.95
Smoking Cabinets from $4.95 to $13.50
Magazine Baskets $1.45
Table Lamps $2.95
Thor Electric Washers $79.50
Hoover Special Cleaners $21.95
Majestic Electric Refrigerators $175.00
Sellers Kitchen Cabinets $43.75
Walnut Cedar Chests $23.00
and Reasonable" Wages,
Chamber of Commerce Head Urges Builders' Organ
ization to Eliminate Shyster Methods and End Cut
Throat Competition.
am further informed that the second
group referred to above have not
themselves been entirely free from
this practice.
"A thorough study of this situation
and the conflicting elements evident
therein has convinced me that your
problem is purely a 'trade problem'at
the present time, peculiarly limited in
its adjustment possibilities to your
own ranks. In other words, it looks to
the unprejudiced observers as if you
folks need a house cleaning. You need
to replace throat-cutting competition
with 'give and take' co-operation. I
have learned personally during the
past few years that I cannot climb to
success over the prostrate forms of
my competitors, but that I must carry
them up with me in a determined
effort to raise the general level. In
that way and in that way only can I
in my business or you in yours hope
to eliminate the troubles which are
now robbing you of the reasonable
profit to which you are entitled.
Co-Operation Urged
"When and if the building trades
and contractors of Atlanta get to
gether among themselves and a three
quarters majority decided to co-oper
ate for the mutual benefit of your
profession, then the Chamber of Com
merce can certainly aid you in getting
rid of the one-quarter minority who
still insist on wage profiteering and
shyster methods, but until that time
comes, I am convinced that the efforts
of this or any other outside body
would be absolutely futile, and I can
only suggest to you to tackle this
problem yourselves with clean hands
and open minds."
Hugh Roberts, to whom the letter
was addressed, declared a year ago
that depressions "are a very old and
periodically recurring problem" and
that "panics are caused by the im
providence of the stupid and the fore
sight of the intelligent embarked on
an ambitious and entirely selfish pro
gram." He also observed, from his
non-union vantage point, that "the
alien and the ex-service man take
their places side by side in the bread
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