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The independent. [volume] (Lincoln, Neb.) 1902-1907, November 27, 1902, Image 1

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Vol. XIV.
LINCOLN, NEB., NOV. 27, 1902.
No. 27.
What Is to ba Done Now? Separation in
' the Democratic Party Mail Coma
Which Sida 6 hall Bt tha
' ' ' Mania?
The following is part of a personal
letter to the editor of The Independent,
written by one of the most; distin
guished and unselfish reformers in the
state of Indiana. It is of such geenral
interest at this time, for tens of thou
sands of men seem to be all thinking
along the same lines, that the editor
takes the liberty to print it There
teems to be a kind of "telepathy"
among the men who fight plutocfacy,
for it often happens that the same idea
6trikes them in all the states of the
union at the same time. This letter
is along the lines of many others
that have been received during the last
week or two, and the editor has. been
doing some hard thinking on the sub
ject himself. - The question is: What
shall we do now? The extract is as
"But, Friend Tibbies, what are we
to do in politics? The mental confu
sion amonc the mass of voters, who
nade up the great army that followed
the standard-bearer of the democratic
party in 1896 and in 1900, has pro
duced, as shown by the late election,
results that you well call "political
chaos." Ideas and motives have been
terribly mixed. Some, saturated with
disgust, have remained away from the
I oils disgusted with so-called leader
shiD su h as we have had in Indiana,
and not caring to stultify themselves
by voting the republican ticket, wmie
others voted the ' prohibition or so
cialist tickets. Others, angered by the
manifest duplicity and unmistakable
treachery of their own party commit
teemen, concluded that the best way to
gt rid of such influences in their own
nartv was to close their eyes to prm
ciple and political policy, and vote in a
way to destroy the organization. Some,
not believing that either organization
cared anything about principle or po
.itical colicy. have mixed up their tick
ets in trying to select from both the
men believed to be best fitted and most
"Under such circumstances, nothing
could be reasonably predicted except
what has occurred. Let the repuoii
cans and the reorganizers figure out
a3 much comfort as they please, the
encouraging fact remains that the re-
organizers, while able to make confu
Bion. cannot draw the rank and file
after them. The two million or more
voters outside the democratic party,
who supported Mr. Bryan more because
of the confidence they had in him thau
in the party he represented, cannot be
induced in another national campaign
to assist the democratic party, unless
it shall manifest enough vitality and
courage to rid itself of not only Cleve
land and Hill, but of every mn who
holds onto the party standard with
one hand and to plutocratic influences
with the other.
"There were too many men on the
rostrum in 1900 who were overly anx
ious, while supporting Mr. Bryan, to
have every audience they faced under
. stand that they were 'not in accord
with Mr. Bryan on the money ques
tion,' and who never lost an opportun
ity, in season or out, to inform an au
dience of that fact
"So important and so fundamental
is the financial question, that it is a
fatter of doubt about any man being
right on any political question who is
not right on that question. The man
who, by reason of personal interests,
is deceiving himself or trying to de
ceive others, or the man who thinks
he is opposed to trusts, etc., and yet
sees nothing wrong in the financial
combinations, caanot be depended up
on when the pinch comes, no difference
who he may be, or how earnest and
energetic he may be in his attempts
to bring about some reforms.
"Whon T say this, I believe that I
am expressing the well-settled belief
of a very large per cent of the demo
cratic masses and almost all of those
outside of that party, who supported
Mr. Bryan in two campaigns.
"The silver republican organization
has served its purpose in two cam
paigns and will not appear again, but
your organization ought to be kept up,
as I have no doubt it will be, until
something arises that may make it
necessary or possible to . bring into
existence an organization that will ral
ly all those, who are believers in the
principles of the Kansas City platform,
if it shall be, that the people's party
cannot do it - "
"This election has demonstrated,
what ought to have been clear from the
first, that the two elements in the
democratic party cannot operate to
gether. It is a house divided against
itself. That there must in the end,
be a separation seems no clearer to
me now than it did before the Kansas
City convention. Nothing holds them
together now but the name. There
would be some advantage if the Bryan
element could keep the name, but
there would also be some disadvant
ages. There is a growing conviction
that the disadvantages far outweigh
ail possible advantage. Just so long
as the old name remains, the political
barnacles will attach themselves to it,
and the only way to get rid of them
seems to be to Jet them and the name
go together. If this separation must
come as I believe it must the sooner
it comes the better it will be for the
"It can be said of the people's party
greatly to its credit that it has
cared more about principles and re
sults than about party name. Judg
ing by the past, I believe that it pan
be relied upon to do almost anything
that will advance its cause, and that
will give reasonable hope of securing
the results it has desired.
"Some of us at least are, therefore,
looking to your party to take such ac
tion as the situation demands as early
as possible. It is useless for us to
think about another national campaign
under the leadership of the democratic
party. The traitors cannot be discov
ered and driven out of it Enough
will remain to betray it and bring de
feat Thousands of voters are so firm
ly fixed in this belief Vhat they will not
make a move to prevent -the. jeorgani
zation element from taking possession
of the organization. Many of them
hope that this will occur, believing
that - when it does, occur the separa
tion will take place, and that all true
believers in the Kansas City declara
tions will gladly come out of it"
Municipal Ownership
The Massachusetts law of 1893, pro
viding that the supreme court appoint
a commission of three to value prop
erties to be taken by the city for pub
lic purposes, seems 10 have been
drawn on the wrong principle. The
city of Holyoke determined four years
ago to take over the plant of the
water power company. After four
years of struggle in the courts at a
cost of $250,000, the commission has
reported that the city should pay
$708,790 for the property. The Out
look suggests that a more practical
plan would be for the law to give the
city power to take tne property at
once as in the case of streets and
settle the question of compensation
Whoa There, Hayseed
When the farmers' alliance demand
ed government loans at 2 per cent in
terest on warehouse receipts for wheat
and other non-perishable products, the
property element . laughed them to
scorn. That would interfere with the
bankers' profits and dead cinch. But
when the bankers want money the
secretary of . the treasury without
any law4 loans them thirty millions on
their chattel paper! The farmers
asked only 65 per cent of the value of
their grain, but the bankers ask and
get 100 per cent of the face value of
their chattel notes! The bankers are
in politics controlling both old par
ties. The farmers, well they are most
ly controlled by the bankers by vot
ing the tickets that the bankers vote
and control. "" The government has
gone into not only the banking, but the
brokerage business but not for the
people, but for the especial benefit of
the bankers. Whoa there, hayseed!
J. A. Wayland, in Appeal to Reason.
Readers of The Independent should
examine the advertisements in its col
umns. It will pay you to read them
and take advantage of the bargains of
fered. Always mention The Independent
Will BooiTlt do It, Asks Mr. Da Hart-
How ilia Sice! Trust Kills off
Editor Independent: I quote a press
"Cleveland, Nov. 7. The reduction
in the price of steel tubes, amount
ing to about $5 a ton, which went in
to effect within the past week, is said
by steel men to mark the opening of
an aggressive warfare by the steel
trust against the independent manufac
turers of tube steel. " "
"The trust has sought to buy up
these outside mills, but the owners
would not sell. Now it is said to be
t3 purpose to force them out of bus
iness by cutting the price so low they
cannot meet it. When their extern
mination has been accomplished it is
understood the trust will go ahead
with the construction of the two big
tube plants it is to build at Duquesne,
Pa., and Lorain, O."
Theodore Roosevelt should make a
note of the above. I take it from the
New York Times of November 8, four
days after election. Six months ago
the Times, apparently, was Ignorant of
trusts, but now it can speak of a
"cteel trust," as if there were no doubt
of its existence and that this was on
of many others.
If it is true, as charged, that the
United States Steel combination is
really reducing the price of its steel
tubes for the purpose of forcing the
"independent manufacturers of tube
steej" out of existence, by cutting the
price-so low that they cannot meet it,
then it is time for the president to
take notice of the fact and apply the
Sherman anti-trust law.
A monopoly shows its teeth in two
ways: First, by cutting prices so low
that a competitor cannot meet them;
second, k by elevating prices against
consumers? In the one case, the ob
ject is , to kill off competition and
thereby increase the power of a mo
nopoly. In the other case, the object
Is to make money by .charging exorbi
tant prices to the consumers.
Whenever the president sees, or
ought to see, that prices are lowered
unreasonably, that is, below the cost
of production, then he sees, or ought
to see, the evidence of a monopoly;
and he ought to apply the Sherman
law. Again ,if he sees that prices are
raised unreasonably, that Is, fat above
the cost of production, . then he can
see the evidence again of a monopoly.
In the latter case, the monster is at
war with the general public of consum
ers; wh: s, in the former case, the trust
is destroying a competitor, in order to
get ready to make war upon the gen
eral public again.
It is as much the duty of the presi
dent to prevent a trust from destroy
ing a competitor as it is to prevent it
from eating out the substance of the
people by charging exorbitant prices.
If the president will act when prices
are reduced unreasonably, he .will not.
have to act when prices are raised
unreasonably against the public, be
cause prices will never be raised
against consumefs if the trust is pun
I hed promptly for lowering them
against competitors.
The Sherman law reads:
"Sec. 2. Every person who shall
monopolize, or attempt to monopolize,
or combine or conspire with any other
person or persons, to monopolize any
part of the trade or commerce among
the several states, or with foreign na
tions, shall be guilty of a misdemean
or, and, on conviction thereof, shall be
punished by fine not exceeding $5,000.
or by imprisonment not exceeding one
year, or by both said punishments, in
the discretion of the court."
What is better evidence of an "at
tempt" to monopolize than the lower
ing of the price of a commodity un
reasonably against competitors? Tales
the great billion dollar steel trust, for
Instance. If we find It reducing the
price of steel tubes $5 a ton, what more
evidence do we want that it is done for
the purpose of destroying a compet!
tor, especially when independent man
ufacturers of tube steel are willing to
come forward and swear that they can
not be produced at so low a price and
pay reasonable wages and reasonable
dividends on the capital Invested? In
the case of the "independent manufac
turers of tube steel" is appears that the
trust wanted to buy them out, and
when they refused to sell, the trust
lowered the price $5 a ton. This evi
dence, in connection with , tfie fact
that as soon as the "independents"
were crushed, the trust would have a
complete monopoly, ought to ba
enough to cause the president to move.
But, suppose this evidence is not
sufficient to cause a grand jury to in
dict, or, if sufficient to cause a grand
jury to indict, it is not sufficient to
move a petit jury to convict, it is cer
tainly sufficient to cause the president
to commence a civil suit in equity for
the purpose of putting the defendants
tmder oath and of getting more evi
dence. The fourth section of . the law
which gives the circuit courts of the
United States jurisdiction for the pur
pose of "preventing and restraining
violations of this act," and which au
thorizes the president to order the at
torney general to commence such suits,
can be used for getting additional or
sufficient evidence for an Indictment
by grand jury and conviction by petit
jury. It is as much the duty of the
president to hunt for, evidence by
means of a suit in equity ,as it is to
use the evidence for trial and convic-
iJon in the ordinary criminal proced
ure by a grand and petit Jury. And
this evidence cannot only be used by
the president in a criminal proceed
ing, but for the purpose of enjoining
and restraining the parties from going' ,
further with their, monopolistic busi
ness. The right to commence a suit
for the purpose of more evidence and
an Injunction, carries with it, inciden
tally, the right to have a temporary
and, perhaps, a permanent receiver ap
pointed. We have plenty of precedents
for injunctions against labor unions,
and It is high time to have precedents
for Injunctions against such combina?
tions as the steel trust, if It proposes
to monopolize the whole steel business
of the country and to do it by putting ;
up and putting down prices.
There is not much disposition, here,
to interfere with the great aggrega
tions of capital, merely because vthey
are great aggregations, but when they
attempt to break down small con-
cerns by lowering prices, or to fleece
the public by raising prices inordinate
ly, then we all wake up, and the news
papers are obliged to follow suit or
lo:e their circulation. This is so, es
pecially when prices are raised, op
pressively against consumers. The
meat combine was an illustration of
this. We could stand idly by and see
the business of our little butchers
here in the east destroyed by the com
petition of the great butchers of the
west, but when it came to paying two
prices for every pound of meat, then
we all found out that a meat monop
oly is a crime and that it can be pun
ished as such not only by the laws
of the several states, but by the laws
of the United States as well.
The Washington special correspon
dent of the New York World wrote,
November 9 as follows:
"President Roosevelt has cast Wall
street overboard, hook, line and sinker.
It is stated on good authority that he
has decided to Ignore the big financial
Interests, typified by J. P. Morgan &
Co., and similar organizations, and to
advocate such policies as will benefit
the people and enhance his popularity
with the masses. -
"His plans are to be accomplished
without any reduction of the present
tariff. When tariff revision comes It
It to be placed on a strictly scientific
basis and handled by a tariff commis
sion. " 'My aim,' the president said last
jek to a representative of one of the
biggest houses in Wall street, 'will bo
to benefit the people without disturb
ing commercial conditions.'
"To that end radical laws to prevent
railroad combinations and against or
ganizations formed to control food,
fuel and clothing products will be rec
ommended to congress by the presi
dent Every effort will be made to
have laws embodying the president'3
recommendations passed at the coming
"In addition the president will ask
Attorney General Knox to institute
additional suits to prevent gigantic
combinations of railroad lines. The
attorney general is now considering a
number of combinations with a view
of bringing legal action against them.
"Tha close advisers of the president

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