Newspaper Page Text
Brief Comments and Reflections Anent Topical and Timely Events
Succinctly Discussed From our Viewpoint If the plans of a number of St. Paul and Minneapolis business men mature, the near future should witness the sight of strings of river barges plying the “Big Muddy” from the Municipal wharves in Minneapolis down to New Orleans, touching at intermediate points. In these days of freight congestion and car shortage, the idea seems timely. That difficulties will be encountered is undeniable. The Mississippi has always been dangerous to navigate. And the lack of foresight that is responsible for the absence of freight carriers on the river will cost us dearly. But the necessity is great enough to justify the expense. Kansas City formed a company to operate a line of barges down the Missouri to St. Louis some years ago. The writer remembers some of the difficulties the navigators experienced. Sand bars and snags played their part in the general demoralization that followed the sailing of the first boats. It was not an uncommon sight to see a river boat hung up on a sand bar a few miles below Kansas City. For a time the company, which, if I remember correctly, received financial aid from the Kansas City exchequer, was in bad straits and sailings stopped. However, the federal appropriations for widening and deepening the channel gave new life to the enterprise and the com pany finally prospered. Freight rates were so low on certain classes of freight that many manufacturers gave practically all their freight for river points to the barge company. In times of real, or imaginary stress, our motives are open to question by every person possessing facilities for heckling. With a great many an accusation implies wrong-doing, and therefore, merits punishment. Snap judgment is often influenced by the loud-voiced exponents of a particular argument. We too often al low our deeper judgment to be influenced by self-appointed mentors. It is generally accepted belief tbat'the chief executive of a na tion should be free from criticism in times of national peril. And this policy is accepted by the majority of people. It follows that ad" verse criticism of any executive is equally harmful to the public wel fare. If it be “lese-majeste” to criticize the chief executive it is equally improper to criticize a lesser executive holding office by virtue of the same elective power. If for the sake of maintaining power, we refrain from question ing the infallibility of one, we cannot deny the right of the other to the same immunity, Therefore, if it be wrong to criticize the president, it is entirely wrong to attempt to embarrass the mayor of a community. Still, there are some who would criticize any one who dared ex press a belief at variance with that expressed by the higher executive. Why not be consistent? Or are some writers so imbued with the im portance of their own conception of loyalty that they are totally blind to the fact that their every opinion does not reflect the desires of all? A contemporary inquires “was there ever an orange unsunkiss ed.” This is an unkind act at a much advertised brand of the luscious golden fruit of California. We do not kuow whether or not it is possible to ripen an orange by ariificial means and so produce the beautiful color that graces the fruit. But we do know that bananas are ripened artificially —why not oranges? The bananas received in eastern Canadian ports are for the most part green. The degree of the rawness depends of course upon the date the importer wishes to place the ripened banana upon the market. Long, cool, darkened cellars accomodate the green bananas. Steam heat is the artificial ripener and on a certain date the fruit is ready for market. The taste of the artificially ripened bauaua is much inferior to the sun ripened fruit. The former lack the delicate taste of the na tural banana and are dry and somewhat shriveled. It is quite easy to detect the difference from the appearance of the skin. The sun ripened banana skin is fresh and has a lustre not found in those which are steam ripened. Sometimes a vital truth is driven home more deeply through the medium of a jest column than when indited by the trenchant pen of an editorial writer. The following from the St. Louis Post Dispatch, illustrates our contention:— ' Pa, what’s the difference between a patriot and a jingo?” “A patriot, my son, is one whose bosom swells with pride of country; while in a jingo the swelling appears in his head.” The isle of Greece! the isle of Greece! Where burning Sappho loved and sung, Where grew the arts of war and peace, Where Delos rose and Phoebus sprung!” Byron gave his life in an attempt to restore to Greece her an cient greatness. How much that country suffers we know through the meagre reports that filter through the censor. If Byron were living today perhap's his burning words would have aroused the Greeks to resist extinction. One by oue the ancient kingdoms are vanishing. The pity is that the power of resistance seetns gone. In early days it was deem ed a privilege to die in the cause of Greece. But Delos has been sev ere 1 fro n the chain Jupiter wove, she floats again. The shafts of Phoebus Apollo cannot maintain against the force of bullets. The greatness of Greece has vanished never to return. But even extinction cannot make us forget her former glories. Nor shall we ever forget the wonderful wealth of inspiration she has pro vided the men of all times. A majority of the lowa Senate have recorded their belief that mail order sales originate at the place of delivery. This ruling may appear to be based upon sound principles according to the views of political expediency; but from the- standpoint of the merchant the view is wrong. If Sam Jones, living in Des Moines, sends to a Chicago mail or der house for any article of merchandise, the order originates in lowa, but the sale has its origin in Illinois—only after the order has been accepted. The order is the basis of the sale, not vice versa as some would have us believe. If we accept as tenable the proposition of reversing the logical sequence of order and sale we destroy the entire fabric upon which the merchandising business is built. If Sam Jones changes his resi dence to Omaha and orders goods sent to Des Moines from Chicago, what then is the status of the shipment? Can it be claimed that the point of delivery in such a case would also be the point at which the sale originated? How could lowa authorities control delivery of mer chandise in their state if such deliveries originated in other states? 1 THE ONLOOKER By “ Ham" They’re skating tonight out on old Powder Horn And swinging that dear old duck roll, The fancy “grape vine,” on ice slick and fine And crossing the stars at the pole. While over the hill keeps the moon bright and eray, A sight that brings hearts a glad thrill, His soft silver glow, spreads over the deep snow And shows us the sport on the hill. There, gathered together are old folks and young — What care they how north winds may blow? Now gripping seats tight, they’re hollering “al right,” ‘‘Alright, Uncle Bill, let ’er go.” Away! they’re off, like the winds thru the night, Just flying, now bumpety bump, Down hills that are steep, there, all in a heap, They dive in the snowdrift, kerplunk. Ah, winter you’re king, tho the summer be When stars the wide heavens adorn, And memory holds still the joys left to thrill Of frolic on old Powder Horn. Things I Wish I Had Known Before I Was 21 1. What I was going to do for a living, what my life work would be. 2. —That my health after thirty depended in a large degree on what I put in my stomach before I was twenty-one. 3. —How to take care of money, 4. —The commercial asset of being neatly and sensiby dressed. 5- —That a man’s habits are mighty hard to change after he is twenty-one. 6. —That a harvest depends upon the seed sown; wheat produces wheat, thistles bring forth thistles, ragweeds spoil good pasture, and wild oats surely produce all kinds of misery and unhappiness. 7. —That things worth while require time, patience and work. 8. —That you can’t get something for nothing. 9. —That the world give me just about what I deserve. 10. —That by the sweat of my brow I must earn my bread. 11. —That a thorough education not only pays better wages than hard labor, but it brings the hesl of everything else—namely, more en joyable work, better food, more of the wholesome luxuries and pleasures of life, better folks to live and deal with, and best of all, the genuine satisfaction that you are somebody worthy of respect, confidence, and the priceless gift of friendship. 12. That honesty is the best policy; not only in dealing with my neighbors, but also in dealing with myself and God. 13. —The value of truthfulness is everything. 14. The folly of not taking other people’s advice. 15. That everything my mother wanted me to do was right. 16. —That “dad” wasn’t an old fogy after all, if I had done as he wished me to do I would have been much better off physically, mentally and morally. 17. What it really meant to father and mother to raise their son. 18. —What hardships and disappointments would be entailed by leaving home against my parents’ wishes.—Ex. A man may go into business with all the hope in the world for his success; but, if he is lacking in his small share of that great source of power known as perseverance there is not much chance for his success, in the material interests of this world, or in the development of mental faculties, if he is lacking in this power of perseverance,” says a writer in the Index. If we start out to do a thing, and some fellow who cares nothing for himself or anyone else comes up trying to discourage us, by telling that such a thing cannot be done—that we had better spend our time in something useful —and we quit because such a man says that thing; we had better practice the art of persevering in our work or we never shall /have success. Perseverance, however is not the whole thing. To have perse verance we must first have faith in the thing which we are trying to ac complish, for if we, ourselves, do not think that a thing can be done, it is quite certain that we cannot do it. No matter how much perseverance we usually have, we cannot succeed in a wrong act, for one cannot per severe in a thing the principles of which are wrong or impossible. Is it to be thought that Thomas A. Edison, had he been minus his share of the great power of persistence against all impediments, would have succeeded in his great inventions? It is a fact that he took years of nerve-racking labor to perfect them so that they would be useful. Would all the great masterpieces of literature and art, which have been inherit ed by us from the ages of toil by our forefathers be here, had not those before us the perseverance to see the right and stick to the thing which they knew could be done? No; none of these thmgs should we have, were it not for perseverance. We are at our present station in life because of perseverance, either because we had too little of this power which cannot be overcome; or because we had our portion of it. This power of pertinacity, like courage, is developed by the will, and unless the will is brought into play, if we always have been lacking in this power of constancy, we can not get steadfastness, as its strength is derived from the will.” The “Powder Horn" By Mr. J. B. queen, Perseverance Observations on Timely and Interesting Topics of the Day Briefly The geographical peculiarities of the Mexican border have become “a well-known fact.” Those who believe in single tax have a very convincing argu ment when potatoes are four dollars the bushel. The increased cost of paper is being noticed by the subscrib er s share in the printed matter of the magazines. Is it not a peculiar economic incident which allows a movie actor to have more salary than a successful agriculturist? O. Henry entitled one of his best books 4 Cabbages and Kings. I eople have to have cabbage, but they can worry along without kings. Making mistakes is one of the natural rights of busy people. The idle man creates no possibilities for mistakes. The American people have got beyond that point in civiliza tion, which decreed that war was one of the necessary evils. Six weeks from now the snow will be gone, Spring will be at hand, gardens will be made ready, and the high cost of living will be battled by the man with the garden hoe. The Mexicans have given evidence of many peculiar national traits. They have adopted ideas from other countries and, like most borrowers of ideas, they have given a rather unique twist to the ac tual practice of some imported experiments which they are using. People who pass over the Juarez bridge from El Paso into Mexico are now liable to quarantine. This idea Mexico borrowed from the piaptice of quarantining those who pass over the same bridge from Juarez, Mexico, into El Paso, Texas. There is some hope for a country which regards sanitation as a measure of international rela tions. There are so many useful things which are of vital import ance to one who is starting in life that are taught in the public school, that the writer suggests the teaching, by example and prac tice, of all necessary knowledge which is not included in public school lessons. This plan could be enlarged so as to include the col leges, and professorships established in studies that are not now taught. Much that is taught in schools and colleges is forgotten. Could not a method of teaching be established which wculd teach people and children how not to forget? A deal of good lumber has been wasted in using more wood than is actually needed for building purposes. Millions of feet of the best hard woods have been put into furniture in unnecessary quantities. The next time you see a building in the course of con struction, look carefully at the size and dimensions of the lumber used in the work. Take notice of the furniture offered for sale and you will find that a great deal less wood would have filled all re quirements in manufacture. The death of General Frederick Funston brings to mind the recent criticism of the Army. General Funston was a type of soldier only found in the United States Army. His rank was gained by his own merits, and the fact that merit can win for any soldier the rank of major general, is the highest praise one can give the military sys tem of a country. Frier to the great war it was impossible for a civilian to hold, or even to gain a footing in the Furopean armies. The career of General Funston is an inspiration, giving great prom ise to any one who,enters the Army of this country. It does not make any material difference whether George Washington cut down the cherry tree or not. The fact that counts is, that George Washington was george Washington; and the only George Washington in history. The cherry tree is only a di minutive incident. The First President is an authentic historical fact. Looking back from this century, which is beginning so badly for the world’s people, to the times of the beginning of United States His tory, it ie to be regretted that every country did not have a Wash ington a century ago. A recent wisher for the health and happiness of mankind has promulgated a great secret, which has been the means of keeping the inventor in extraordinary good health. You are to eat when you awake in the morning a banana, and then go to sleep again and finish your rest. Now this plan is a very good one, but suppose one does not awake in time to eat the banana and then go to sleep again. The plan did not tell anything about getting up and going to the ice-box in the Summer time for the banana, nor was the size of the banana specified. Perhaps there are other difficulties which would make the banana heakh-iusuring plan impossible. The large cities which men have built and where more people live than there are accomodations for, have created an artificial life for millions of people. There is no sensible reason w r by millions of people should congregate upon Manhattan Island. The city of New York has only one real reason for being a city, and that is the good harbor and dockage afforded by its natural location. The fuel and food for Manhattan’s millions must be shipped into the city —into a seaport which has a population of many in excess to its actual needs. Within a day’s journey of Manhattan are idle and empty lands, are beautiful hills, are silvery streams, are cool, shady dells, are great groves of trees; all to be had for half the toil that the millions ex pend in their herded life. Go into the streets of lower Manhattan and see the throng of people. See their faces. Look into the places they call homes. Why are they there? Not for wealth: surely a short while should con vince any one that only a very few of Manhattan’s people are weal thy. So many, many, are poor; and so wretchedly poor. Millions of people living an artificial life, pinched by want, and dwarfed by an unnatural environment. But what is the remedy? The writer does not know, but the spectacle of millions living in crowded quarters, without the bless ings this old world holds in plenty, has moved the writer to com ment on the question. Whenever literature consoles sorrow or assuages pain; wher ever it brings gladness to eyes which fail with wafulness and tears, and ache for the dark house and the long sleep,—there is exhibited in its noblest form the immortal influence of Athens. —Macaulay. PENDENNIS’ CHAT and Entertainingly Discussed By Mr. J. S.