Newspaper Page Text
SEPTEMBER 14, 1905
PAGE R Gfo Nobraolsa. Independent ey, property, transportation, help or assist ance in any manner or form to any political party, or any candidate for any civil office, or any political organization or committee, or to any individual to be used or expended for political purposes. Sec. 2. Any corpora tion violating any of the provisions of this act shall forfeit and pay a fine of $1,000 for the first offense. Sec. 3. Upon conviction of a second or subsequent offence shall forfeit and pay a fine of $2,000. But it is no surprising thing to see the republican con ventions adopt populist doctrines long years after the people have been convinced of the soundness of those doctrines. It is, how ever, an insult to the general voters to have a local machine, that is thorougniy dominat ed by railroad rule and under the personal direction of railroad lawyers and railroad politicians, get up a set of resolutions that are only intended to catch the present breeze. If the leaders think they can rool the farm ers of Polk county this way they are welcome to try it on Polk County Democrat. of, fraternal Insurance has become astonish ingly large. Assuming that the 6,000,000 members of the insurance orders carry an in surance on an average of only $1,000 each. It appears that no less than $6,000,000,000 of fraternal insurance ia now in existence in this country. Insurance experts are constant ly lecturing the people as to the Instability of all forms of assessment Insurance, and ; occasionally there is a warning collapse, but J the popularity of the method shows no di- minution. The ready answer to all criticism is that assessment insurance is cheaper than any other, and the protection is as good as long as the insuring organization lasts that in any event the insured gets what he pays for without heavy loading of the premium for expenses. Wichita (Kan.), Eagle. EVILS OF THE REVENUE LAW The burdensome revenue law with which Ne braska is cursed continues to be denounced in the newspapers of the state: The present indications point to the fact that the tax levy of 1905 will simply be a dandy and for its burdensomeness will be all that the Telegraph has promised for it. After the local assessor had valued your per sonal property for all they could conscientious ly place upon it the state board of equali zation has raised it forty per cent, or nearly one-half. There are cattle listed for taxation in Saline county with more value placed upon them than they would bring in the market at the time of listing for taxation. Threshing machines have been another item greatly valued in the eyes of the state board of equalization and . until the time arrives when the collector shall call upon you the next time you will not know whether you ' -ve been assessed or simply held up and robbed of a great majority of your belongings called personal property. Friend Telegraph (Rep.). LIFE INSURANCE GRAFTING New York's investigation of the big life in surance companies has elicited from officials some startling admissions, indicating that scandals exist in most of the companies that have been transacting the greatest amount of business in the United States: -. When we come to such transactions as ' those by which, the New York Life Insurance company put out of its hands large amounts of industrial securities to deceive the Ger- . man government we are perilously near the ' region of plain fraud. How can any one en gaged in the life Insurance business reconcile . transactions of that kind with his conscience and sense of duty as a trustee? The drift of legislation in all the states is plainly opposed to the use of public money tor private pur poses. So far as legislators are able to effect it treasurers are forbidden to take interests on public money or to speculate with it, un der the severest penalties, which often in volve penitentiary sentences. We fail to see in what particular the abuse of a position as a private trustee differs from abuse of a position as public trustee, except that the penalties are lighter in one case than in the other. Manifestly there is need for the over hauling of the entire life insurance system and for its divorce from trust companies and Inside corporations, through which some man agers apparently are seeking to enrich them selves. .If there are any , profits from such transactions the policy holders should be the -beneficiaries. The temptation to accept dub ious securities offered by a member of a bank ing firm to himself as chairman of a finance committee must be well nigh irresistible. Such transactions can only be called by one name "graft," even, when practiced by "hon- orable men" standing high in the community : and famous for acts of charity and public : spirit. Chicago Tribune. ; There is no doubt that the prevailing opinion in this counlry that the old-line in- surance companies are not honestly managed 1 is causing many of the young people to take I insurance in the fraternal orders. The New ! York Commercial says that -while the non- ' life-insurance orders show a growth, the insurance orders are the ones which have the large increase in membership. The volume NEW CONDITIONS IN THE ORIENT The new condition of affairs caused by the conclusion of peace between Japan and Russia is becoming clearer. The riots In Tokio, the situation in China and the new relations between the powers are considered by editorial writers: ' There has been an underlying practical basis to the general American sentiment in favor of Japan. We have admired the little yellow men for their bravery and ability;1 but under this has been an instinctive feeling on the part of the general public, and a practical knowledge on the part of the mercantile leaders who have been forced to inform themselves with regard to "the eastern question,' to the effect that American trade interests in the east would be best served by Japanese success. Buffalo Evening Times. Did the 'Marquis of Lansdowne foresee that the only possible peace would be unpop ular in Japan, and did he so manipulate' the negotiations, that King Edward's great and good friend should have the burden to bear? He is a wise and wily diplomat of long ex perience and it is well known that he cares more for British trade than for that of any ' other nation on earth. It is all every well for our president to persuade warring nations to beat their swords into ploughshares, their , spears into pruning hooks, but in doing it he must not spoil the sale of a single dynamo or . cause the rejection of one poor box of Ameri can canned goods. St. LoUis Post-Dispatch. But if the people pesist in their delusion . that the Americans have turned against them , and that Mr. Roosevelt was actuated by a preference for Russia, it may in future be as difficult or even as impossible for an Ameri- -can business man to . establish himself in Japan as it is now for him to establish him self in the interior of China. If they mis judge us or misconceive Mr. Roosevelt's ser- vice to them, we" have a right to demand of their government that every instrument of publicity be employed, and that every prom ising means be availed of to dispel their delusions and do us justice. We love and revere our British kinsmen, but we know that they are pushing traders and we have heard that they, are in alliance with Japan. If the news that the Japanese are beginning to treat Americans as "foreign devils" is received in London without visible emotion we may con clude that the British trader sees how he can turn to good " account for himself our unpopularity with the Japanese. New York Times. MR. ROCKEFELLER IS DISPLEASED Mr. Rockefeller, in a circular sent to the views as to national legislation and has indicated that he is displeased with the president's policy of railway regulation: - Mr. Rocefeller, in a circular sent to the clients of his National City bank, serves no tice that, though "the executive will be in sistent" on rate legislation, "so far as con gress is concerned" (meaning the United States senate) "it is doubtful if a subject so complex can be disposed of In a single ses sion." Meaning that Mr. Rockefeller's "sen ators from Rockefeller" . will give that ex cuse for beating a measure earnestly advo cated by President Roosevelt in the last con gress, and as vigorously pressed again by him In spite of the known hostility of the forces at the command of the syndicated rail roads and coalized trusts. Despite his enor mous unpopularity for perhaps no man in the United States since Aaron Burr was more unpopular than John D. Rockefeller the head of the huge Standard Oil -system of banks, insurance companies, railroads and trusts, is possessed of enormous power to prevent legislation needed by the people. Whether an open test of this power, as against a most popular president backed by a whole people, will prove strong enough to go on in the way it has been going for twenty-five years, remains to be seen. We, do not doubt ,that President Roosevelt will accept the Rockefeller challenge In an em phatic manner. New York Press. NEW PLAN TO MEET DEFICIT The St. Paul Pioneer Press suggests that the deficit In the national treasury for this year could be met If the land laws were revised and government land sold at Its real worth: A great part of this land was given away outright under perversions of the homestead act, the stone and timber act and the desert land act. The rest was sold at $1.25 or $2.50 per acre. Vast amounts of this land were covered with valuable timber, making it worth from $10 to $50 or $75 per acre. And scarcely an tacre of it, after it passed into private ownership, could be bought for less than double the price paid to the government. The timbered land, parted with for a song, could not be repurchased for less than ten times the price paid the government. But had the government received even $1 per acre additional for those 75,000,000 acres, and v could It receive the same additional dollar on the sales of 1905, the treasury would today have bulged with a big addition to its surplus and all anticipations of a deficit for the cur-, rent year would have vanished. President Roosevelt will again, at the approaching ses sion of congress, urge the repeal of the abom inable laws referred to. He will also urge the adoption of the measure urged by the commis sion appointed by him to Investigate the sub ject, that, all timbered land be withdrawn from sale and the right of cutting the tim ber be sold separately to the highest bidder for each tract. Then the land, if suitable for agriculture, could be sold or nomesteaded; or If suitable for forestry only, It could be reserved for that purpose. This last meas ure alone would probably bring enough reve nue to make good the anticipated deficit and avoid the necessity of any such unpopular, picayunish resort as a tax on coffee or a re storation of the stamp tax on checks, etc. Supplemented by the other reforms urged, the result would be beyond question. If con gress has the backbone to dery the powerful interests which have hitherto thwarted every attempt to amend the laws under which they thrive, here is a plan which will afford the needed money without immediate resort, un der the pressure of necessity, to measures of . doubtful wisdom. , 1 HOW BURLINGTON WAS MANIPULATED The Nebraska State Journal summarizes as follows a bit of railway history told by Will Payne in the Saturday Evening Post: The Burlington Is, or was capitalized at $111,000,000. It is almost certain that it cost the stockholders very much less to build, for the capitalization was presumably made large enough to cover the value of the gifts by the people of land and cash whicn went a long way toward building the lines. In August, 1896, the price paid for Burlington was on a basis of a trifle more than half the $111, 000,000 of capitalization. Early In 1901 some body began buying Burlington stock heavily, and the price advanced steadily. By the first of May an enormous quantity had been ab- -eorbed at prices finally reaching nearly $200 a share. At this point circulars were sent out to shareholders informing them that the Great Northern and Northern Pacific railroads would pay $200 per share for stock, paying in 4 per cent bonds of the two roads or partly in cash, as the holders should select, since J. P. Morgan had organized a syndicate to furnish $50,000,000 dollars for that purpose. Under this offer, all but $4,000,000 or the stock was cashed in, and without the payment of a cent of his own money James J. Hill became mas ter of the Burlington at twice its capitaliza tion, and made a profit besides. Jt is upon this $210,000,000, representing at least twice the actual cash Investment In the road, that Ne braska and other states are asked to pay divi dend making freight rates. It Is upon this account that Mr. Hill fs in federal court to escape paying Nebraska taxes. Needless to say, it Is to defeat the public efforts to repudi ate such impositions that the railroad agents are today engaging in frenzied efforts to re tain the pass power in Nebraska politics.