JU H 1 1 J95S
The Idaho Scimitar.
BOISE, IDAHO, JANUARY 18, 1908.
Two Wrecked Railroads.
The opening of the new year, bringing the cus
tomary annual settlement period and producing a
scarcity of ready money even in good times, left upon
the breakers that encompass the harbor of safety the
wreck of two extensive railroad properties.
Seaboard Air Line, financed into inextricable con
fusion by Thomas F. Ryan, passed first into the hands
of receivers, and the Chicago Great Western, man
aged by A. B. Stickney, followed a few days later.
The Seaboard Air Line represents a consolidation
of several Southern railroads, with 2,600 miles of
track, the main line running between Richmond,
Virginia, and Tampa, Florida. This railroad serves
the States of Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia and
Alabama and an allied steamboat line connects Balti
and Norfolk. The liabilities of the company
the 1st of January and the interest and other de
to meet all demands upon the company and
amount to $58,000,000, upon which interest matured
The court ordered the
mands could not be met.
to borrow money for that purpose. Meanwhile, they
to control and operate the property.
The Chicago Great Western main line runs from
Chicago to Omaha, with a branch line to Kansas
City and another to Minneapolis,
schedules an indebtedness of $10,653,414, of which
$3,342,545 is due or will be due during the current
year. About a million and a half of the obligations
matured the first of the year and money could not
be procured with which to meet demands.
During the past ten years the company has ex
pended $19,000,000 in rebuilding and otherwise im
proving the property and it was getting along very
well until the financial squeeze closed the shops to
which the big operators repair when they are in
need of more money than they possess. Both of these
railroad collapses can be attributed to the panic and
the boast of the optimistic that the usual slaughter
of railroad enterprises would not accompany the
existing financial distress has not been made good.
The failure of the Chicago Great Western will be
generally regretted than that of the Seaboard
Air Line, for it was an independent railroad and
of great annoyance to the Rockefellcr
was a source
Morgan-Ryan interests. It built markets where the
combine said no markets should exist and it out
rebated the rebating lines of the West.
Mr. Stickney, its president, has been an open ad
vocate of the policy of Government regulation of rail
roads and has advanced many reform ideas that have
met the approval of the mass of the people, generally
That Mr. Stickney was appointed one of the re
of his own road is evidence of the confidence
considered the legitimate victims of the robber com
bine of New York.
of the court in the integrity and capacity of the man.
He may be able to place the Chicago Great Western
on its feet.
Taft At New York.
it was understood when Secretary Taft accepted
invitation to deliver an address at the People's
Institute in New York that he would define his po
sition on the important issues before the people. His
address was delivered last Friday night and the
secretary did not very clearly commit himself in the
Great aggregations of wealth, he dclared, were
both good and bad. They were good when properly
employed and bad when improperly employed. He
was in favor of labor organizations when they were
for the common good, and said that the workingmen
were privileged to strike without violence and to in
duce others to strike through peaceful persuasion.
The boycott of the unions and the blacklist of the
employer were condemned. Mr. Taft defended the
injunction, of which he was one of the pioneer ex
ponents, while saying that it had been greatly abused.
He declined to discuss the tariff and the Browns
ville incident, opposed Government ownership and
said it was yet too early to enforce an income tax.
Mr. Taft did not assume the attitude of one that
would take up the policies of President Roosevelt
in the New York speech, and he has not in any
speech. If the people take him, they will do it on
faith and on the presumed recommendation of Mr.
Roosevelt, for he has never committed himself to
the reforms that are loudly demanded. His New
York speech was a disappointment in its omission of
several expected declarations, without which the peo
pie will not rally to his support.
The President of the United States said, a few
days ago, that Mr. Taft would have on the first bal
lot in the Republican convention 600 of the 980
votes. If so, he will be nominated, and without much
doubt he will be defeated at the polls. He is not
the strongest man in the Republican party.
The Appeal to Reason, a socialistic newspaper of
extreme views and rather violent conclusions, yet
as reliable, probably, in its information department
as any publication, makes a statement in a recent
issue that has a bearing on the hard times precipi
tated by the panic of October.
It asked its readers to report bank failures, the
closing of mills and mines and factories and wage
reductions in their respective localities and it says
it is unable to follow out its intention to publish
the reports, because they would take up more room
than it can spare. It says the information it intended
to give to the public would occupy sixteen news
paper pages of seven columns each, set in the smallest
In the same connection there is published an ex
tract from the Wall Street Journal of December
17th, which says :
averages $378,000 a day, as figured in Dun's Review.
For the four months, beginning with August and
ending with November, the hand of adversity has
not been lightly laid upon the manufacturing enter
prises of the country. During these 122 days the
amount of indebtedness represented in the failures
Not in six years has there been so heavy a total
of failures as these, in which the monthly average
was $11,300,000. The corresponding monthly aver
a g e f or 1906 was approximately $3,750,000.
The information given by these two authorities,
representing opposite extremes of society, inclines
one to the belief that the dinner pail that was slowly
filled under the auspices of the Republican party has
been suddenly emptied, with the same party in con
trol of all branches of the Government and with the
highest protective tariff law the country ever ex
perienced upon the statute books.
The conditions that have prostrated the country
prove very conclusively that it has placed far too
much dependence on a party that has had a remark
able run of luck during the half century of its ex
istence and far too much dependence on the prize
policy of that party.
No political party can guarantee the full measure
of prosperity to the various classes of our popula
tion, but any party that will honestly and conscien
tiously exercise the wisdom imparted by experience
will be able to avoid such calamities as the country
is now experiencing.
For years past, Republicanism has been tempting
the fate it has finally encountered. It has been leg
islating in the interest of a favored class and ignor
ing the necessities of the great mass of the people.
Its crowning iniquities were the enforcement of a
new monetary standard after the struggle of 1896 and
the enactment of the Dingley tariff of 1897, both
procured by special interests and for the exclusive
benefit of those interests.
The country was able to endure its legislative and
executive excesses for many years, being upheld by
its wonderful industrial resources and by its ability
to conceal real conditions and maintain a fictitious
confidence in the present and future.
But when the chief magistrate, fearing the ultimate
effect of the policies of his party, undertook to reme
dy some palpable evils, he laid bare to the financial
world the dangerous weakness of a system enthroned
in dishonesty and rapacity. He ought not to be
severely blamed for the disasters that followed. He
might have concealed them until another presidential
election had continued the power of his party. But
their ultimate exposure was certain, for a nation
cannot follow the wrong road any great distance,
and the mass of the people were beginning to exhibit
uneasiness and dissatisfaction as the party continued
to lead them astray.
A year or two of adversity must ensue under the
most patriotic management of the affairs of the
Nation. A much longer period of uncompensated
toil and attendant suffering will follow if the party
that caused the panic is continued in the position
of a governing force. It is now engaged in an effort
to bolster up the fortunes of the special interests,
with characteristic disregard for the general inter
ests, by the enactment of a new currency law that
offers a stone in place of the bread the people are
One cannot view the existing industrial condition
with any faith in the claim that the Republican
party is affording protection to American labor or
to any of the producing classes that are building
great fortunes for a favored few.
President Parkinson Sustained.
Twice within the past few weeks The Scimitar
has suggested to the Mormon establishment the pro
priety of taking action in the case of George C.
Parkinson, president of one of the stakes of Zion
in Idaho, that the claim of President Hyde, another
stake holder, might be exemplified. President Hyde
has assured the public that the church always pun
ishes departures from the straight and narrow path—
not once in a while, but always.
It is said by the Pocatello Mail that the church
has taken action in the case of President Parkinson
—that it took action at a conference recently held
at Preston—that it decided to sustain him for the
ensuing three months, during which the financial
affairs of the irrigation district Mr. Parkinson rep
resents officially are to be investigated.
The church is much more tolerant than Governor
Gooding has manifested himself to be. It wants to
be shown, while he concluded he had seen enough
to warrant a resignation and, while Mr. Parkinson
is still president of a stake, he is no longer a regent
of the State.
He will therefore continue to point the way to
salvation under the auspices of the hierarchy, al
though he is not good enough for Gooding.
xml | txt