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The San Francisco call. [volume] (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, May 22, 1898, Image 18

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/am opposed to the annexation of
the Philippines because it would
mean a reversal of the traditions of
our Government, an increase of our
army, centralization of Government
and higher taxation. — Chauncey Depew.
IF we should keep the Philippine
Islands we would reverse the tra
ditions of this Government from
its foundation. We would open up
a new line of policy. Let us see
what that would mean In the first
place it would mean the establishment
of a military government over possibly
ten millions of people 6000 miles away
from us; it would mean the increase
of our navy to the navy of France or
It would mean the increase of our
army to 150,000— more likely to 200,000
men. It would mean the increase of
our annual expenditures to double what
they are now. It would mean that the
United States Government would be
brought in closer contact with the peo
ple than ever before in the history of
this country-
We have known that there is a Fed
eral Government only as representing
our flag, our nationality and glorious
traditions, but we have not felt the
burden of its support or been con
fronted with the possibility of the
payment of an enormous annual mili
tary tax except during the Civil War.
In Europe, where great armies and
navies are maintained, the people are
taxed directly for their maintenance.
Our revenues have been obtained here
tofore by indirect taxation, with the
exception of a slight tax on whisky.
But with the increase o-f our expen
ditures by 100 per cent the taxes to
support the Government would be felt
in our homes and in our offices. We
should feel them in both the neces
saries and the luxuries of life — in our
homes, in our tools, in our food, in our
:-l( 'thing, in our carriages and in our
svagons; in our checks and notes and
bonds and transfers of property— in
every transaction of every-day busi
ness life. For if we are to maintain
armies and navies like the pow
ers of Europe we must raise the reve
nue for them by the means mentioned
and also by a stamp tax that will face
us at every turn.
These conditions are contrary to cur
present form of government. To-day
we know that the customs collector
exists. He sits in his office at the cus
tom-house, and few of us ever think
of him — fewer still have ever seen him
or felt the taxes collected through him.
Under the new regime tax collectors
wuuid necessarily be excise men, with
offices everywhere. They would be
known not only in New York and the
other great centers of commerce, but
in every town, village and hamlet In
the United States. Our people respond
with patriotic alacrity to every bur
den, sacrifice or tax for the successful
carrying c-n of war. Whether they
would with e<iual cheerfulness do the
same for the new policy of the colonial
empire furnishes food for considera
What else does a world-wide policy
mean to us? It means a centralization
wh'.ch would change materially the re
lations of the United States to the
Federal Government. The control of
these populous colonies would be cen
) tered at Washlng
l ton, and we should
i ptretch centraliza
tion of power far
beyond what the
1 pld Federalists ever
> dreamed of. You
, pannot have empire
without all its at
' tributes, and that
1 means a practical
i revolution of our
form of government
and "an abandon
ment of the beliefs which the fathers
held when they established this Gov-
Some one may ask "Isn't it possible
to derive from these proposed colonies
a revenue greater than the additional
expenditure which their possession
would involve.
How? By taxation? Every time you
attempt to collect a tax from these
people they would rise and you would
have to call on your military force to
suppress them. And suppress them
f<«r what? For doing what John Han
cock did. They might quote against
-us our immortal declaration, "that tax
ation without representation is tyr
anny." That is, assuming that the
people had not voted the tax. It is
beyond imagining that they could form
a representative government on our 4
lines of universal suffrage, for they are 1
not like the people of Cuba, capable ofi
self-government. They are semi-bar-,
barous Malays and savage tribes, whose
only knowledge of government is that'
of an autocratic chief. <
Spain has not made the Philippines'
productive. Perhaps that is due to<
Spain's form of colonial government. <
So far, I believe, they have enriched (
only the officials and a Governor-Gen
eral. But the taxes have been raised"
by enforced taxation, upheld by mili-<
tary rule. And still Spain herself, I(
learn, has found her dependencies for (
several years an actual source of loss;
but then there has been great corrup
tion in Spanish officials. <
It is possible that we could hardly C
civilize the people of the Philippines mc
a hundred years and make them self-c
governing. Meantime we would haye £
to keep an army of 50,000 men on the
islands to hold them in check. £
Some one has suggested that theC
Philippines could be made a district^
like Alaska.
The conditions are wholly different.
Alaska is governed as a district be
cause it has no population, or at least^
the population is inconsiderable. Touc
have there a territory adjunct to vs c
nearly as great as the whole United
States and a population of about 5000. c
In the Philippines you have a popula-C
tion of ten millions in a country olderc
in settlement than ours, and still the_
people are not fit to be admitted as
citizens of a territory of the United 0
States or to send Representatives to theo
Senate as a State. o
I do not think we will ever acquireo
Cuba. If we took Cuba into the UnitedQ
States we would repudiate the cm ~o~ o
phatie declarations we have made to°
the world of the cause for which weO
are now carrying on a war with Spain, o
In a great measure this is a sentimental^
war. It certainly is not a war of con
quest. We have no desire to acquire o
Cuba, If you saw a woman beingo
beaten on the streets of New York bboy o
a big man you would rescue her from
his brutality, but not because you°
wanted to make the woman your wife.O
That is precisely the situation in Cuba.o
We are rescuing her from a brutal an<l o
despotic form of government, and all
we w&nt is to give her freedom and°
help her people to establish a stableO
form of republican government. i
There are those who claim that the :
people of the Philippines have suffered,
as much as the people of Cuba, and.
that we are as much bound in morality
to help them to be free as we are to"
aid the Cubans.
Ido not think so. In the first place,;
nine-tenths of them are semi-barbarous
or savage. And then we can't go :
around hunting for wrongs to right and:
reorganizing all the cruel despotisms:
of the earth. If we followed that pol- ,
icy to its logical conclusion, we should,
have to drive the Turk out of Armenia;
we should have to send an army to
Teheran to dispose of the Shah of Per- :
sia, who thinks no more of cutting off =
a head than Wall street does of cut-:
ting off a coupon. Cuba is within a.
few hours of our own coast. We have,
cordial social and commercial relations'
with her. For three years we have
sat by and seen her people struggling
for freedom. We have seep them
driven in from the country and shut
up helpless within Spanish fortified
towns and starved to death, and we
have intervened to rescue them because
we could stand this outrage on hu
manity no longer.
What shall we do with the Philip
o S~\ NE fact that needs to be appre-
I elated in order to understand
I the situation in the present war
\^J between the United States and
Spain is the difference in the
°extent and accuracy of the information
0 which each country possesses in regard
Oto the other.
3 Americans are, as a rule, well read
3 and well informed. They don't know
0 all about Spain, but they know in a
0 more or less general way of its extent
3 and its resources. They know, too,
D something of the habits and character
_of the people. A good many of them
have actually visited Spain and have
D seen the country for themselves; near
ly all the others have read about it. To
3be sure, I think the ideas which our
3 people have formed regarding Spain
3 are not altogether accurate.
3 We are apt to regard the upper
j classes of Spain as ignorant, lazy and
j worthless and to believe that the rest
jOf the nation Is made up of bull-flght
ers and muleteers who are good for lit
tle else. As a matter of fact, the re-
} sources of Spain are apt to prove sur
prisingly gTeat, considering the desper
>ate condition in which she is now
'placed, and the average Spaniard,
> though he may be averse to ordinary
,labor, looks upon fighting as an honor
able and worthy employment, and gen
erally has enjoyed some training for
it. Mind, I am not casting doubt on
'the result of the present war; it can
have but one ending. "What I may say
is that we must not expect Spain to
crumble to pieces at the first touch of
a hostile nation. The fully Informed
people of this country do not expect
that, but they realize that Spain is
immeasurably weaker that the United
States. In general, the ideas in regard
to our opponent which prevail in this
country are pretty accurate^
When one turns to Spain,' however,
The Ex-Secretary of State Approves
Mr. Depew's Views on the
WASHINGTON^. C. May, 1898.—
In my judgment we ought not to em
barrass .ourselves with the ownership of
the Philippine Islands, distant so far ;
from the United States. I concur in the
opinion expressed by Mr. Depew and :
have always opposed the accession of]
any outlying territory, the defense of]
which might be embarrassing to our.
country. JOHN SHERMAN. '.
Why, trade them for something that
we want. Or, if Spain should recognize
the inevitable before long and come to
us saying: "We will release Cuba;
European nations have agreed to help
us out on the pledge of these islands,
with the war indemnity you demand;
we will repay you now." Then we
could give up the Philippines and with
draw from the East. If we don't do
By General Sickles, Ex-Minister to Madrid.
the situation is very different. The
people of Spain, taken en masse, are
not well educated or widely traveled,
and they are particularly ignorant as
to what this particular part of the
world is like. Even those whom one
would expect to find well posted in this
particular cherish singular delusions.
That these incorrect ideas persist is
due, I believe, to the fact that they
are constantly put forward by the edi
tors of newspapers and the civil lead
ers who know them to be false.
One cannot avoid the conclusion that
there is systematic and willful misrep
resentation of the United States on the
part of the Spanish leaders. Why this
is so is hard to say, but it accounts for
the general misinformation that ob
tains throughout Spain on this partic
ular subject. Well-educated Spaniards
believe that there is a small cultured
class in the United States, but that as
a nation we are made up chiefly of
shop-keepers and ditch-diggers.
They have been told over and over
again that we have no courage, that
we are afraid to fight, that our navy is
useless, or nearly so. and that our lead
ers are all blowhard politicians. Nat
urally they have come to believe this,
and so confidently expect to whip us.
As for the lower classes, they actual
ly believe that the principal industry of
America is the raising of hogs, and at
the word Americanos they conjure up
visions of swine herders and their
One or two instances will give a bet
ter idea of these popular misconcep
tions. A comic paper has just been
started in Madrid. It is called "The
Porker" and is devoted to the ridicule
of Americans. The title does not seem
at all crude or exaggerated to the av
erage Spaniard, I'll warrant. The other
day the Spanish press printed a report
that the savages of Ohio and Illinois
had risen and that all the regular
troops would hav •:■ to be called from
the seaboard to quell the outbreak.
From what I know of the state of
public information in Madrid I dare
say this story didn't raise a smile of
incredulity in all the capital unless it
was in the case of seme American born
i«thls, we must adopt the Eastern policy
Kof the nations of Europe and utilize
fc our conquest by further expansions.
It Already with England they have be
lc gun to divide up China. England's
policy is the policy "of the open door.
Russia, France and Germany have
taken slices of China and said that
'these territories and their ports would
cbe closed to the commerce of other
= nations. If we are to become a great
: trading nation like England, we, too,
. must pick out our port in China and
.seize, fortify and hold it. Then, from
\ that naval and military port, we must
; begin to build railroads into the in
: terior and thus open up to our goods
; markets among the Asiatics. We cer
: tainly cannot be dependent for our
; Asiatic port on the friendship ~6f Eng
. land, and we must be ready to say to
Continental Europe that we want our
fair share of the East or we will fight
for it.
I certainly think It would be possi
ble to reserve a coaling station for our*
selves in the Philippines and thus avoid
this international complication.
There are something like a thousand
islands there, I believe. All we need
to do before we hand the islands over
to some other nation is to pick out the
island that we want for a coaliner sta
resident. It seems to be the settled (
policy of the Spanish officials and
newspapers to increase rather than to*
dispel this iernorance. Therefore the<
Spanish people are likely to experience <
a rude awakening before this war is,
over, an awakening that may be
fraught with danger to these same of- (
ficials. (
At the same time I believe that those {
who expect Spain to yield the present
contest without a struggle are badly c
mistaken. The Spaniard is really a c
desperate fighter when he is pushed c
to it.
What^ Spain has done toward quell
ing the"* insurrection in Cuba is not to*
be taken as a fair test of what she cane
do in an extremity. There may have c
been sufficient reasons why the Span
ish generals did not wish to bring the c
Cuban war to a speedy end, and anyC
way in that contest the Spanish na- <
tion has not been straining every nerve
as they will against the United States.
The Spaniard's boast about shedding C
the last drop of blood in defense of hisc
country's honor may be partly bun
combe, but it is not altogether with
out foundation. C
Some of the wars between the South c
American countries, whose people are_
of Spanish blood, give instances of this
desperate species of bravery. In theC
war between Chile and Peru, after thee
Chilean vessel had been sunk and while©
her crew were struggling in the water,
they still fought with their knives 0
against the Peruvians who came too
rescue them and died rather than ac- o
cept aid at the hands of their enemies.
I have been asked if I think that the°
present plan of raising an army byO
calling out the national militia will pro- o
vide a more efficient force than the
North had at its command at the be
ginning of the Civil War. O
The conditions are widely different, q
biit they are alike in this: At the be
ginning of the Civil War it was neces
sary to make an army and now it isO
necessary to make' an army. Thereo
was militia to be called on then as_
now. Perhaps it is a little more num
erous and a trifle more efficient andO
better equipped now. O
I have always opposed the acces
sion of any outlying territory, the
defense of which might be embar
assing to our country.-- Ex-Secretary
of State John Sherman.
tion and place a
force of troops
there. We grain all
that we could want
Jn that part of the
world without un
dertaking any of
the responsibllityof
governing ten mil
lion uncivilized,tur
bulent people, as
alien in race.religion &
and traditions to <»®®®®®®®('
us as the Sioux or
the Comanches. I believe there are
more than a hundred tribes and as
many different languages in the Phil
/ think the wiser plan would be
to follow the principles of our
forefathers. The permanent oc
cupation of the Philippines or
other foreign conquests would
bring about conditions with which
we could not cope. — L. R. Ellert
I am opposed to the permanent oc
cupation of the Philippine Islands, or
any other conquests that may accrue
to us through war.
We could not govern the millions or
people on the Philippine Islands by the
laws of our country. They are entire
ly dissimilar in every respect. And It
would be out of the question for us to
colonize the islands with white labor
from this country, because they could
not stand the climate.
From a commercial point of view
there would be advantages in the per
manent possession of the islands, but
to my mind these advantages are far
more than counterbalanced by the dis
I think the wiser plan would be to
follow the principles of our forefathers.
The permanent occupation of the Phil
ippines or other foreign conquest*
would bring about conditions with
which we could not cope.
/ am opposed to the perma
nent occupation of the Philippines,
or any other tropical conquests,
as well as the annexation of the
Hawaiian Islands. — John P. Irish.
The policy of holding any conquests
we may make in this war is destined
to gather very great force and may
carry the country off its feet, reverse
our historic policy and eventually
change our entire system of govern
The evils that lie in it in the future
may be wisely avoided by abstaining
from making this a war of conquest.
The destruction of the Spanish fleet at
Manila was necessary for the protec
tion of our Pacific Coast. The tem
porary occupation of Philippine points
that can serve Spain as her naval base
is also necessary to protect the Pa
cific Coast.
The permanent occupation of the
Philippines with the duty of civilizing
their ten millions of half savages in a
climate in which the Anglo-Saxon race
cannot flourish is a policy that should
not be thought of.
Our laboring population will be the
first, most constant, and pitiful suf-
ion?" pXy 0111 " entry on an lm *> erlal «*
pings 1 pos^ssions, the Philip
10 us only by cheap and servile labor
%?£££%££££" * ppllcable S
« horn'/ o ° U , r »•"-!»«•« whiteiato?
at home. Our laboring population can,
gasssaai to ' he Ci " 3 " ;
aTweVlV^ ° ther tropical ?x se i 11I t ,!
SPwell VH' Other 'roPlcal.conqueiS.
wailan'l^and"; anne:tatlon »' the Ha-
I want to see the war prosecuted vie-
I cannot see sufficient justi
fication at the present time for
the withdrawal of our country's at
tention from the welfare of our own
people in favor of a foreign people
who are, in my judgment, not so
deserving of nor so likely to profit
by that attention.— J. B. Reinstein.
In the matter of the permanent oc
cupation of the Philippine Islands by
the United States it seems to me that
it would be wise to adhere to the tra
ditions and policy of the United States
as laid down by the great founders ana
statesmen of our country.
The United States find much trouble
in applying the principles of our re
public in our own country, and that
after over one hundred years of ex
It would be extremely difficult for us
to successfully govern many million
inhabitants of a far off land, whosa
manners, customs, thoughts and feel
ings are so widely different from our
Permanent occupation of country
carries with it the responsibility for th»
betterment of the condition of its peo«
pie, and I cannot see sufficient justi
fication at the present time for th«
withdrawal of our country's attention
from the welfare of our own people in
favor of a foreign people who are, in
my judgment, not so deserving of no*
so likely to profit by that attention.

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