Newspaper Page Text
The Seattle Republican
Single Copies, 10 Cents. THE SEATTLE REPUBLICAN is published every Friday by Cayton Publishing Company. Subscriptions, $3 per year; six months, $1.50; postage prepaid. Entered as second-class matter at the postofflce at Seattle. CAYTON PUBLISHING COMPANY Inc. Main 305 427 Epler Block Seattle, Washington HORACE ROSCOE CAYTON, - - - Publisher SUSIE REVELS CAYTON, - - - Associate EDITORIAL. Perhaps Morgan never contributed to campaigns with a promise of refund, but he must have had a trump up his sleeve when he gave a quarter of a million dollars to aid the candidacy of a presidential as pirant. In the past, New York state may not have used much care in selecting guberna torial candidates, hut this year all parties are getting their Eli in naming excellent men as thier standard bearers. Sttlzer is no exception to the rule. .May the best man win. War in the Balkins will be just as bad ;is if il were anywhere else. War i.s simply hell, wherever it is. Campaign contributions by corporation kings are common to our system of govern ment, and instead of washing dirty linens, efforts should be made to discontinue the practice. Arizona's governor that was so keen for a re-call constitution is to ho given a dose of his own vomit. With Gov. Hartley stumping Missouri for Taft and La Follett working in Wisconsin for him, Teethevelt will not have as smooth sailing as he had contemplated. The purity squad, after all, did not seem to have a mistaken idea in arresting Tonkin and his girl companions at a vile dance hall, Col. Alden J. Times to the contrary not withstanding. Vermont's chief output is tombstones. But the address on the consignment ship ped last election day seems to be confusing. —Cleveland Leader. Secretary Wilson, of the Agricultural De partment, says that he will retire on March 5. But he does not say of what year.— Rochester Post-Express. Should the Canal question be referred to The Hague? The charges of some lawyers make it doubtful whether peace is cheaper than war.—Southern Lumberman. SEATTLE, WASHINGTON, FRIDAY, OCTOBER 4, 1912. The referendum and recall ideas would have answered very Avell in the days of such tyrants as Nero, as a matter of thwarting the designs of despots. Representative gov ernment is the outgrowth of the conditions of those days and similar conditions until the ideal in government became a realization —the individual governing himself. These days in all things may not be the best. From what is taking place daily by improvements in many directions it may mean that we are just entering the good things reserved up in the centuries for the well-being and earth ly glory of mankind. Government, however, is not susceptible to great changes, as Mr. Roosevelt would instill in his followers. We can only be gov erned by some one wholly or by a few, or by ourselves wholly, if by ourselves and others jointly. The choice of government is indeed limited. And the political economist or the most learned statesman may write volumes in elaboration of government, but they will still be speaking to the very few kinds of government possible. This goes to say that the evolution leading up to the auto mobile or to those great printing presses, with their wilderness of machinery, will not apply to government. The thoughtless think of government as they think of machinery. They think that it can go on and on for ever, making additions by way of improve ment. They speaK of old-fashioned ideas and new-fashioned ideas as flippantly as if they were speaking of women's wearing ap parel. Representative government is perfect gov ernment, and is not susceptible to any im provement —just as truth will not be bet tered. We cannot accept substitutes for the parents in the family as the head of the family at its best. Philosophers, the wise men of all time, have dreamed of democra cies and republics, and now and then they were realized. They lapsed now and then, not because the truth that man would gov ern himself was in ''error," but because the people were traded on; they became heed less and thoughtless, and as Patrick Henry put it, little by little the liberties of the peo ple were stolen from them. We have a re fix of that condition today, when under one pretext or another designing men are mak ing effort to play the people into political ambush. And if they are not careful they will lose their present estate of self-government and thus revert to one of the other, where dspot ism is a phase if not the whole thing—de pending on the caprice of an individual or individuals, rather than on the deliberate choice of themselves. The referendum and the recall, if not the initiative, are not less than expressions of representative government in reversion. It and the VOLUME XIV, NUMBER 30. is as if we had made the rounds of the dif ferent modes, and in our craze for change are willing to hazard our independence at finding something new. "There is nothing new under the sun,'' strikes off the situation aptly enough. In the effort to find the new we are confronted with the old. Knock the masks away, and there it is. The referen dum is a repudiation of ourselves, and which will beget distrust and chaos in the end if permitted as thought out. It is a pretty theory to talk of the people uncreating what they create. It is all right in the potential ity. The power is theirs. But at that they are not to be wanton in destruction, lest they destroy themselves. The legislators are not to be thought apart from the people. They are the people's further selves, as are the other officials that are chosen to act for the people. Their slection is merely a mat ter of convenience, since the people cannot meet together to discuss and pass on ques tions for the public good. The individual is in evidence as much as it is possible for him to be io, and thus answering the best form of government—the nearest approach to in dividual government. Referendum and recall is of the theory that legislators and officials act independent ly of the people, making any handing down laws to them, rather than carrying out their wishes. We have no such condition. And when it is urged that we have, it is merely an assumption, or the expression of a the ory of possibility. The legislators and of fleers could forget the purpose of their selec tion. But would it he conducive to their political longevity? Not much. They are also the people, and are no more interested in making hard conditions than the people are to have them. The tendency of the Bull Moose crowd is to divorce the people and the officials, notwithstanding they are im mediately depending on them. A lahorer will generally stand with his employer in most things, where polities is not involved, sine* 1 he depen/ls on his employer for exist ence. He may not be en rapport with the employer, hut lie does not oppose him or antagonize him. Some such relation exists between legislators and officials and the people. The referendum and the recall are weap ons of destruction. Perhaps nothing in his tory has worn such a menacing front. They were not revived out of necessity, but as engines of offense to beat a way into the af fections of the people and finally into office by disgruntled men. The dear people, happily, are becoming to see the intent. They know that there are no tyrants among us. If there were, they would be expelled by the force of public opinion, which brooks no infringement on the American patent of rights.—Age.