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OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE NATIONAL NONPARTISAN LEAGUE IN THEI . TATh OF MON(TA4NA
fOLUMI 3 GREAT FALLS, MONTANA, SATURDAY, SEPT. 6, 1919. NUMBER 37. |-- •-- - - . .. . . , . . . .. ... STATE BOARD LET $105,500,000 OF CORPORATIOi 9OPERTY -.GO FREE--RAISE LAND AND LIVESTOCK HUNDRL 'ER CENT .. ... . . .. .. " . . . . - - AN OPEN LETTER IS SENT TO MONTANA LOYALTY LEAGUE BY AN OPTIMISTIC NON-PARTISAN Recalls Who It Was That Denounced and Murdered Lincoln and Com pares Them To the Townley Persecutors and Farmer Haters of Today. Certain of League Victory In 1920. Baker, Mont., Aug. 25, 1919. The Montana Loyalty League, Helena, Mont. You ought to know right from wrong, all right, and you ought to be honest enough to admit the truth, but in my opinion, you are not an honest set of men to turn down the North Dakota laws as they are not what your pamphlet represents them to be, and you know it as well as we do. If you people were half as loyal to the people as you are to Big Biz, you would sure be a great help to our country. The trouble with you is, I believe, that you are afraid of the truth and are afraid that something will come out by and by that will ,eouvince people that you have been doing something you should not Conming to Judgment Do you mean to say that you loyal people do not know what democracy is or what it means? I am sure very sorry for you poor devils, indeed I am. For you are coming to judg ment and I am thankful to see it. That is one thing I am going to stay in Montana for, just to help put such people as you fellou\s where you be long. If you want to be fair, just leave everything to the vote of the people and let the people rule and you will not have any Loyalty league. We will do the loyalty stunt, don't you worry about the loyal part of it. You would have us think profiteering in substitutes was an act of loyalty. No, that is what hurts. Wants Truth Told Who had the power to stbop it? Did the people have the power? Look in the glass and answer that! You did not stop it, of course, but why don't you loyal peonle say something about it now instead of trying to keep the truth from people? Just tell the straight truth about the laws and explain them as they are, not as you hope they will be. If the laws in North Dakota were as rot'en as you would make people think, who would be the first ones to take advantage of them? THE POOR WORKING ('LASS? No, I don't think so. If they were crook ed enough. probably you would not I ave such a holler about them. Somne Honest 'Men F'ooled There is no doubt but there are -several good, honest farmers that be long to your Loyalty League, as you call it, but we all have been fooled for a life time and you still can fool lots of people yet, but, thanks to heaven, you cannot fool the majority of us any longer, and we will show you so in good old 1920, ha! ha! A (Continued on Page 2) Minot Minister Praises The Nonpartisan League And Pledges His Support Minot, N. Dak., Aug. 26, 1919. Editor, Montana Nonpartisan, Great Falls, Mont. It is with interest that I read the many Nonpartisan pa pers, which come to this home. I moved from the South land about four weeks ago. What I have learned of your Organiza tion so far "Sounds good to me." While in the South, I voted the Democratic ticket, but I look at it in this way: A fellow ough~ not to be a Democrat or Republican just because his forefathers were, but in this pro gressive age he ought to get out of the rat and vote and stand four square for that which lifts oppressed humanity. What I have heard of your League "has the right ring to me," but I understand it costs $16.00 to join and that for two years. Well I'm just a "Hard Scrapple Circuit" preacher, and married at that. I get from two churches about $48.00 per month and rent, so you see $16.00 looks large to me. Do you know any wealthy man who would donate me my member ship? I don't belong to your "CROWD," but I talk in favor of it and am not ashamed of that which is right in face of men and devils; the right shall prevail and will finally conquer that which is crooked. There seems to be an unrest wherever you may go, search it out, go to the bottom, what is the real cause of it? Humanity is being oppressed. I am with you-I can't give, but I can back and sick you on, and finally the Nonpartisan League, like a "Scotch Bull Terrior," will have all other curs HUNTING A HOLE to pull it in after them. I am your friend, ALFRED L. LORD, Jr., Pastor 1st Nazarine Church, Minot, N. Dak. THANK CAMPBELL FOR COURSE FALSEHOODS IN NEW DAY IN N. D." False Publication In Imitation of Official Pamphlet in North Da kota Arouses Indignation. The following letter, relative to the truth-slaying publication of the Mon tana Loyalty League, in which the name of "The New Day in North Da kota" was stolen bodily from the pam phlet published under that name by the Industrial Commission of North Dakota, shows how the Montana Pal asites have failed to accomplish their purpose. The Montana publication is so full of palpable falsehoods that none but the feeble minded and ex tremely ignorant will be influenced by it. This letter to Mr. Campbell will show how the fake book affected one farmer: Willard, Mont., Aug. 30, 1919 Mr. Will A. Campbell, Helena, Mont. Sir: I have received a copy of your pamphlet "The New Day in North Dakota," and hereby thank you for same as it is such good pro paganda for the Nonpartisan League that you ought to put in a bill to that Organization for pub lishing it. No farmer and no real friend of the farmers can possibly be de ceived by the. outright lies con tained in the comments on the laws, and the half truths con (Continued on Page 2) Montana Power Co. Is Chief Beneficiery Dodging Taxes On $50,000,000 Paying Property Taxes Heeped On Dried Out Farmers While Wealthy Corporations Are Not Even Assessed the Amount Their Own Officers Swear Property Is Worth. An Unblushing Daylight Robbery. The work of the boldest brigands in history, the robberies of the James and Younger gangs were as childs play compared to the un blushing robbery of the tax payers of Montana of the taxes on proper ty of seven big corporations in this state to the value of $105,500,000, perpetrated by the State Board of Equalization which practically concluded its session last Saturday. This is no wild statement. The figures which are given below prove that, despite the fact thatthe law plainly says all property must be assessed at its full and tzue value, the State board fixed the value of these seven corporations at $105,500,000 LESS THAN THE OFFICERS OF THE CORPORATIONS SWORE THE PROPERTY WAS WORTH. SWORN STATEMENTS ON FILE It is an easy matter for any one to prove these assertions, because nlst of the seven corporations named later in detail, have their sworn reports filed with the Public Utilities Commission at Helena FOR THE PURPOSE OF KEEPING THEIR RATES UP TO THE HIGHEST NOTCH. A FAIR PROPOSITION. Is it not, therefore, a fair proposition to set the value of a cor poration at the figures upon which that corporation makes a good income? There are three ways of arriving at the value of the assets of a corporation. One way is to add capital stock and bonds; another is to take the NET earnings from three to five years, and find what capital would be necessary to produce that sum at 7 per cent; the third method is to compute the physical value of the property, which, taking a railroad for example would include right-of-way, trackage, rolling stock, terminals etc. STRUCK AN AVERAGE In the forms prepared in the office of the attorney general this year ALL THREE METHODS f1,RE USED AND AN AVERAGE STRUCIC. This plan was cminent.y fair, and is the basis upon which the State Board of Equalization should have assessed the various pro perties. But did they (lo it? Not by $105,500,000! DIFFERENT WITH FARMERS This same State Board of Equalization, however, very religiously raised farm lands from 5 per cent to 33 1-3 per cent. This same State Beard also raised cattle, hogs and sheep from 5 per cent to 100 per cent in an effort to place everything owned by the farmer and laborer at ITS FULL AND TRUE VALUE. CHILDLIKE EXCUSES And when Attorney General Ford protested at permitting the railroads and Montana Power Co. escape taxation on $105, OC0,000 worth of property what excuse do you suppose the other members of this august board gave. Listen! This is what they said "Oh well, the railroads are having such a pretty tough time of it, and to increase the Montana Power Company Assessment we will have to give them 10 days' notice AND THIS WILL HOLD UP EXTENDING THE ASSESSMENTS IN THE VARIOUS COUNTY OFFICES AND HAMPER THE WORK OF COM PLETING THE TAX ROLLS!" IN DESPERATE POSITION These champions of the big tax-dodging corporations were sure in desperate straits for excuses to use such subterfuges. The consummate gall of a bunch of pirates letting the railroads escape paying taxes on millions of dollars worth of property "because they were having a pretty tough time of it" and then raise the assess ment on livestock 100 per cent in some cases. Who is "having the toughest time of it," the railroad maggots or the dried out farmers in Valley and other counties ? THE BUNCH THAT DID IT The State Board of Equalization is composed of Gov. Sam Vamp. Stewart, Sec. of State C. T. Stewart, State Auditor Porter, State Treasurer Hart and Atty. Gen. Ford. To the credit of Attorney Gen eral Ford be it said he fought the corporation serving majority but was in a hopeless minority. DISTRIBUTION OF TAX GIFTS In permitting and encouraging tax-dodging by corporations at the expense of other tax payers, the State Board of Equalization puts its official O. K. on the following unjust assessments in round numbers : Great Northern, real valuation $100,000,000 assessed at $81,000,000 Northern Pacific, real valuation 90,000,000 assessed at 72.000,000 Oregon Short Line, real valuation 8,800,000 assessed at 7,900,000 Milwaukee real valuation 60,000,000 assessed at 49,000,000 Butte, Anaconda and P., real val. 7,589,000 assessed at 3,000,000 ONE ILLUSTRATION Just to illustrate the method that was used to arrive at the assessment that SHOULD HAVE BEEN MADE by the state board for each of the railroads, the following is given relative to the Great Northern: Market value of capital stock, average for past five years, and market value of bonds issued, average for past five years, less market value of stocks and bonds held solely for investment and not for purposes of control or operation, and less value of non-operating property. Capitalizatin of net earnings. Average of net earnings for past three years capitalized at 7 per cent. In determining net earnings interest paid was included and taxes paid excluded. Average of value of stock and bonds and capitalization of net earn ings gives to entire system, exclusive of stocks and bonds held for in vestment purposes only and non-operating property, $477,993,000. Total'mileage all tracks operated entire system 11,018.49 and total mileage all tracks operated in Montana 2387.84, mileage in Mon tana being .21673 per cent of mileage of entire system. .21673 per cent of value of entire system $477,993,000 gives Value of all property in Montana at ................$103,587,364 Deducting value of all property assessed by County assessors .............. ................... 2,649,979 Val. should have been ass'd by State Board $100,937,385 Assessment made by State Board only................$81,427,653 A 4 PER CENT INCREASE As a result of the equalization of the railroad assessments there is an average increase in valuations on such properties of FOUR (Coutliued on Page 4) ALL LEAGUE MEh ' MUST CLEAR DECKS IN rREPARATION FOR THORO HOUSE-CLEANING Answer of People to Legislative and Executive Insults Must Be A New Set of Officers, Local and State, Who Will Serve the People Instead of the Special Interests. Fellow Leaguers: The lesson of the past session of the Montana Legislature is now plain to ll. The farmers "asked for help and they were given a couple of judges". Through the referendum they demanded that the date of voting upon the amendments to the primary law be set over until 1920. They fulfilled every requirement of the referendum, they circulated and signed the petitions and they registered with the Secretary of State many times the number of signatures required. They were clearly entitled to have the election set back until the general election of 1920, as they demanded-but they were soon un deceived. Their demand was ignored and a new primary law enact ed. They, were deliberately kicked in the face, their appeal for aid I answered with apenr d +,1., ,,.. GANG RIEPUBLICANS THOROUGHLY SCARED TO CALLCONVENTION Delegates will be summoned from all part! of State in an effort to formulate plans to defeat N. P. League and Labor. It has just leaked out that thor oughly frightened by the indigna tion exhibited by the people of Montana since the special session. • and realHzing that the tax -athr dal as a result of the action of the State Board of Equalization will cause another uproar, the Old Gang Republicans very shortly will issue a call for a delegate convention. An effort will be made at this convention to iron out all differ ences within the party ranks, and recommend candidates to be sup ported by the republicans at the next Stato primaries, including a full list of state officers and congressmen. This iS the first step to stem the flood of Nonpartisan League sentiment in the state, and an ef fort will be made to pacify organ ized labor by some more pre election promises which will nev er be kept. They do not want to run the risk of having the gang vote split by several candidates because they know the League and Labor will vote solid. It is predicted that the Gang Democrats will take similar ac tion. Somehow the Old Gangsters in both parties seem badly worried, while tho League farmer and Or ganized Labor is playing ball all the time preparing to upset what ever planis the special interest tools map' lay. NONPARTISAN LEAGUE PLATfORM STATE PROGRAM This program sets forth some of the more importana de mands and needs of the farmers.....The primary purpose of this League is to take the government out of the hands of special privilege and restore it to the people. One plank of this plat form will be discussed each week in the Montana Nonpartisan hereafter. 1. Exemption of Farm Improvements from Taxation. 2. Rural Credit Banks operated at cost. 3. State Terminal Elevators, Warehouses, Flour Mills, Stock Yards, Packing Houses, Creameries and Cold Storage Plants' 4. State Hail Insurance. 5. State Inspection of Dockage and Grading of Grain. 6. Torrens Land Title System. 7. Nonpartisan Election Laws. 8. Equal taxation of Railroads, Mines, Telegraph, Tele phone, Electric Light and Power Companies, and all Public Utility Corporations, as compared with other property owners. 9. State Rural Telephone System operated at cost. NATIONAL DEMANDS 10. We demand that the government refuse to return to private hands ownership or operation of those public utilities owned, operated or controlled by the government during the war. 11. We demand that the conscription of wealth begun by the government through Income and Excess Profit taxes shall be continued and increased, that surplus wealth may be com pelled to pay the money cost of the war. g e; po e answered with scorn and their thous ands of signatures tossed into the waste paper basket. The answer to this is the conquest by the people of every state and local office within the gift of the voters of Montana, a house cleaning so com plete, so thorough, and so salutary that the last lackey of the topper in terests will find himself cultivating the employment agencies or living on what he managed to save out of the rout. That is the only answer worth while, the only one they will heed and the Nonpartisan League together with the Labor forces will present that answer as a reply to the ultima tum of the drought Legislature which was so insultingly delivered last month, at the general election in 1920. Now that means WORK, hard work and lotsof.lit. -.We haoasa lines to mend-all loose ends left by the drought situation to weave up. The absent voters law must be used for the occasion, get together on this matter, organize your precinct, go over it and see who is missing and who will be back, rememrber the old gang have practically driven the far mers away because they think it means security for another term for themselves. All these things we have to look to, get your precinct in hand, visit each other, mark the absent ones and register those who remain in and are not registered, get ready for ac tion. D. C. Dorman, State Supt. WOULD SPREAD NEWS OF LEAGUE IN ILLINOIS. Freeport, Ill, Aug. 22, 1919 Editor Nonpartisan League, Great Falls, Mont. Sirs: I want my address changed on your books from Hoosac, Mont. to Freeport, Ill. Care J. C. Young, Route No. 1. I left Hoosac on the 18th. I am liable to miss one or two numbers, can you send them to me here? I want to do some thing to spread the League propa ganda here. Yours, E. D. Baker.