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About The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923 | View Entire Issue (Aug. 24, 1906)
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' ''Love Thy Country'' Says Rockefeller
No'wBpapor dispatches under date of Cleve
land, Ohio, August 5, were particularly interest
ing. It was Btated in those dispatches that John
D. Rockefeller had addressed the Euclid Avenue
Sunday school, taking for his text "Love Thy
Country." In this address Mr. Rockefeller4 said:
"This is a great and good country to live
in. : It is a powerful country. It has grown to
its present strength of a few Puritan fathers
.who first settled here. It was this spirit of
the Pilgrims this love of truth, respect for
it, the desire of right living, which laid the
massive foundation of the United States. The
Puritans made the beginning what it wite; we
should keep it as it was intended. That is
why we should love this 'country of ours;
love her people, her business, her institutions.
We should sink the smaller annoyances in
the greater things; we should remember that
the events which seem overwhelming now
will ,be forgottenin a decade. Through it all
we must show our love for our fellow man.
s We are free in this country, We can study
-tho Bible, live in truth and accomplish great
ends by our freedom. Over in Europe they
do not have the advantages wo have. I was
surprised to find such a few Sunday schools
on the continent. You know X take great in
terest in Sunday schools. I think they are
. great institutions. Our country is much bet-
ter for its Sunday schools. After I had 'seen
what they have, what Sunday schools there
are across the water, I have decided that this
is .a country of Sunday schools. In living in
the United States you have a heritage which
'j is most valuable."
'" Here is a' man who has organized a great
and' cruel conspiracy in restraint of trade.
Through all manner of crimes he has come to
bo the richest private individual in all the
Only a few months ago he was skulking into
the dark corners of the earth, hiding success
fullyfrom an officer of the law charged with
a man whom Rockefeller crushed, gave an in
teresting illustration of the love which this oil
magnate has for his fellow man.
Let us compare this Rockefeller Sunday
school sermon with editorials taken from two
The Indianapolis News, referring to the visit
which-John D. Rockefeller made to the .chateau
of Napoleon said: "It is natural that this man
should admire Napoleon, for the two are markedly"
alike. The same tremendous organizing capacity,
the same great executive ability, the same mar
velous power of concentration, and the same con
temptuous disregard of obstacles and enemies are
found in both. The men headed and directed the
two greatest machines of their time the French
array and the Standard Oil company. Each de
manded that you should be his friend or at least
do his will or be crushed. No half hearted ser
vice was acceptable in either case. Rockefeller
would put a rival out of business as calmly as
he would write a check for a million dollars pay
able to his pet university. No law, either of
God or man was ever allowed to stand in the
way of Ms crushing his rival. It was precisely
the same with Bonaparte. Men's lives counted
for nothing with him. He respected no law.
Neither one of these conquerors ever seemed to
think that moral qualities attached to acts at
The Grand Rapids (Mich.) Evening Press
said: "If John D. Rockefeller went to Europe
hoping to escape the critcism which so weighed
upon him att home he has been bitterly disap
pointed. His arrival on the other side seems to
have been like jumping out of the frying pan
into the fire The comment of the Paris press
is especially severe, and to cap all Lombroso,
the celebrated criminologist, has published in an
Italian review a study of th.e multi-millionaire,
classing him as an abnormal product of the new
world, deficient in moral sense and possessing a
perverted sense of humanity and justice. Con
tinuing his analysis, Lombroso compares Rocke
feller to the thief somewhat, if anything, to the
thief's advantagj,As m ther ease- t)f-the urlefT
serving upon him a simple writ commanding him JRorl-sfrfWThA Ttnu'rm nva t rmriMio,i v rhl
oo V.. .v, !...,. .1 4.11 !.- i .-- . r. "'"' " " rf -
vv, upiiwM uoiv-iy . mu.BioLiu.tw uuu Lwn iojiinn. rum oi otnefs. He has gone on the theory that
--aJy-JJew weksLgajKaxKlHtor his ar- one, must succeed in his business, even if to do
rest was sworn"buiTbefore an Ohio state court.
Only a few days ago his corporation was in
dicted by a federal grand jury at Chicago.
Yet here we find him preaching to a Sunday
school on the subject: "Love Thy Country!"
Love thy country, Indeed! If John D. Rocke
feller had served his country with half the zeal
he has shown in the service of his god Mam
mon the iniquitous system against which the
American people ;are now contending would not
bo so powerful os to almost baffle the ingenuity
of men seriously bent upon its destruction.
This" man who, through violation of law, has
piled up millions upon millions of dollars, tells
the members of his Sunday school that they must
love their country and their country's institu
tions! Yet he has dodged a writ of subpoena.
He tells them that "through it all we must show
our love for our fellow man." But George Rice,
so it is necessary to ruin friends by the dozen.
"Answering the question of what measures so
ciety should take to protect itself from such a
pestilence, Lombroso says that the multi-millionaire
should be put in a place of absolute seclu
sion, like one who has the plague or is a danger
ous lunatic. Commenting on this, Le Cri, the
Parisian newspaper, asks what Monsieur Roose
velt is going to do aboUt it. -'M. Roosevelt it
says, 'Is not far from sharing the views of the
Italian savant. Is "he going to build a lazar house
for the infected?'"
, Many people will wonder how Rockefeller
can summon courage to preach so much religion
while he practices so much sin. But the greatest
wonder of all is that in the face of his miserable
record, any considerable number of intelligent
men and women can be found with the patience
to listen to his abominable pretenses.
VOLUME' 6, NUMBER 32
of the Virginia forests, threaded the swamps of
Georgia and refused to bow to the autocratic de
crees of kings and princes in the fatherland. Tho
valor which marked, the American arms during
the civil war and history does not record greater
than that displayed on both sides during that
great striiggle was the outgrowth of the Puritan
and cavalier spirit that subdued the primeval
wilderness. The victory over Spain a few years
ago was won in the schoolhouses and by the fire
sides in American homes long before the Maine
was wrecked. A century and a quarter of whole
some influence has left its impress upon tho
present generation, and without that ' influence
this nation would be in a bad way. The Japanese
have set us a good example by acknowledging
their debt to their forefathers. We are too apt
to become puffed up with pride in our own
prowess, too self-sufficient, and it would be well
if every now and then we paused long enough
to acknowledge the strength of character, the
patriotism and the valor we have inherited from
ancestors who underwent trials of which we ot
the present generation have little conception.
HAVE YOU CONTRIBUTED?
The following letter sent but by the chair
man of the democratic congressional committee
explains itself: H
"To All Democratic Voters: If there ever
was a time in the history of the democratic party
for the manifestation of loyalty and patriotism
on the part of its members, it is right now. If
we are to win a victory and elect a president two
years hence, we must first elect a house of rep
resentatives this fall. A democratic house can
and will Investigate every department of the
government With all of them honeycombed by
'graft,' the edges of which only have been touched
by recent exposure and prosecutions there will
be a revelation of rottenness that will astound
the country and create a demand for" a, demo
cratic administration to clean the government
workshop. To win the house we need money to
defray legitimate expenses and get out our vote.
We have no protected monopolies from hich
to draw to fill our coffers, as they do those .of
. the .republican party. We must, therefore, ap
peal to loyal democrats for contributions. Will
you send us $1.00 at once, and in return for this
-we will send you copies of our campaign litera
ture issued by the committee. You will have
tho thanks of the entire democratic party for
your favorable response to our request. Address
all remittances to
- ' ' "J. M. GRIGGS, Chairman
t HtU -v ' ' "Munsey Building,
"" " tj." "Washington, D. C."
WHERE HANNA WOULD STAND
The Washington Post asks: "Would Mark
,Hanna, the founder of the standpat school, be a
standpatter If ho were living?"
The Post is moved to ask this question be
cause Elmer Dover, secretary of the republican
national committee and who was private secre
tary to Senator Hanna, warned the standpatters
that tariff revision is pressing rapidly to the
iront and that, if not this year, then surely in
1908 tariff revision will be the issue. The Post
seems to conclude that Mr. Hanna, if living,
would lean toward tariff revision.
We guess that the Post guesses wrong. If
Mr. Hanna were living, he would be doing busi
ness at the old stand; and he would have the
advantage over some of the republican leaders
of today, In that while serving monopoly, he
would not pretend to bo an anti-monopolist.
ONE MORE "DEFENDER"'
The New York World says that a court
referee has recommended that Mrs. Amelia R.
Gunton be granted a decree of divorce from
George Gunton, editor of Gunton's Magazine.
This recommendation is particularly interesting
because of the fact that Gunton, who secured .a
Dakota divorce several years "ago, was, in Feb
ruary, 1904, married for the second time, and to
a woman younger than his first wife. Mrs. Gun
ton declares that she was never Berved with the
papers in her husband's divorce suit
Commoner readers will remember Prof. Gun
ton as one of the most active "defenders of the
national honor" in 1896 and in later years.
What is there about the job of "defender of
the national honor" that prompts so many of
the persons upon whom that weighty task seems
to rest, to embezzle money from widows and
orphans, to desert faithful wives, or to resort
to other tricks which makes it difficult for men
of common clay to justify with the proud" title
made familiar in the presidential campaign of
1896? i fan ux
THE INFLUENCE OF ANCESTRY
A number of carping critics are poking fun
at the Japanese for ascribing their victories to
the virtues of their ancestors. The critics are
wfS??L Anstry has much nay, all to do
with the material progress of a nation. We love
to point to the valor and self-sacrifice of our Revol
utionary forefathers, but their victories were won
long years before the promulgation of the Declar
ation of Independence, and won by the sturdy
pioneers who subdued the granite hills" of Ver
mont and New Hampshire, braved the dangers
NOT A NEW PARTY
Referring to the American Federation of
Labor's determination to take a hand in politics
the Los Angeles Herald says: "Never before in
the history of the United States has an attempt
been made to build a political party on the nar
row foundation of class interests."
. Lo?, Aneles Herald has entirely missed
the Federation's plan. The American Federa
tion of Labor does not intend, if its recent procla
mation means what it says,' to found a new po
litical part3k On the contrary it specifically ad
vises voters allied with the organization to use
the old political parties instead of tryinc to
organize a new party.
The Herald is mistaken, also in saying that
there has never been an effort made to organize
a new party founded on class interests. That
has been tried time and again, and always with
failure. Today the Herald is strenuously sup
porting a party that, while not founded on class
interests is financed and managed by a very small
class in its own selfish interests". . .
In a speech, delivered at Milwaukee, Wis.,
August 15, Senator LaFollette said: "I will never
forget what we owe the democrats of this state
who were patriotic enough to put party behind
and join with us in saving the state from corpor
Mr. Roosevelt might have said something like
that with respect to the work done by democrats
in the senate upon the railroad rate bill and other
measures Senator LaFollette paid generous trib
ute to the democrats of Wisconsin. A sincere
man himself, he is appreciative of the efforts o
others who agree with him on the proposition that
the great corporations must be servants rather
than masters of the people.
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