The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, August 30, 1907, Page 8, Image 8

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The Commoner.
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THE DAY OF tho straw voto is at hand. Tho
Los Angeles Nows took the first one with this
result: Taft 159, Hughes 46, Foraker 20, La
Folotto 12, Fairbanks 11, Knox 8, Cortelyou 8,
Cannon 4, Shaw 1, Garflold 1. The Chicago
Tribune took a poll of 4,700 editors, congress
men and politicians in eleven states of the cen
tral west. Tho states wore Illinois, Indiana,
Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota,
South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri and
Kansas. In answor to the question as to whom
thoy preferred as the successor of President
Roosevelt the votes stood as follows: Taft 544,
Fairbanks 159, Cannon 101, Hughes 184, Knox
- 19, Senator McCullom 39, President Roosevelt
C OVERNOR GLENN of North Carolina is' not
Of to bo frightened by threats as to the effect
tho enforcement of the law may have upon
tho "business intorests of the country." In a
newspaper interview Governor Glenn says: "I
have no patience with this cry that the legisla
tion in our own state and elsewhere in the south
along these lines is going to retard the develop
ment of the south by frightening capital, hurt
ing tho railroads, and, in effect, killing the
goose that lays the golden egg. I am an indus
trial governor. Only recently a prominent man
wrote to me asking what my position was on
Questions in which capital was interested. I
told him, as I have told others before, that I
was an industrial governor. I have always made
it a point to protect capital and protect the rail-
roads from anything that was unfair. But when
the railroads try to run us, then it is time to
call a halt."
1N A NEWSPAPER interview Attorney Gen-
oral Bonaparte said: "We have several
coveys (of trust magnates) under investigation"
and scrutiny, and hope to land one of them in
the penitontiary for violation of the anti-trust
laws. This will require a little time, and it is
a matter which can not be publicly discussed.
I have been asked very frequently and by the
representatives of many newspapers, whether
it was not, as asserted repeatedly in some of
tho newspapers and by others, better policy to
punish, by imprisonment, if possible, individual
offenders against the anti-trust laws, rather than
to obtain finos against corporations. I have
replied on Bovoral occasions that, in my opinion,
it would be a raoro effective detorrent to punish
individuals as suggested, provided the punish
ment fell on those really responsible for tho
ofllonues and not on tho more subordinates, and
provided the offenses were serious and not
merely formal, and provided that the prosecu
tions wero instituted with a reasonable hope of
success. I have said this more than once, be
cause I have been asked the question very fre
quently. I entertain the opinion thus expressed
and I think it is a sound and reasonable one."
IN ANOTHER newspaper interview Mr. Bona
parte said: "If tho ground of complaint
against the department is that it proposes to
punish prominent and wealthy men of corpora
tions having vast amounts of capital and en
gaged in vory cxtensivo business, whon these
are shown to have been wilful and persistent
lawbreakers on a great scale and with grave
injury to the purposes of the law, I must admit
that these complaints are well founded. That
is precisely what the department of justice is
trying to do, and, while I remain its very un
worthy head will continue to do so far as it
that tho only way to stop rebating is to jail tho
offonders. A report was in general circulation
through the financial district before the market
opened that Secretary of State Root had at
tended the conference at Mr. Morgan's office.
Ho was in the city for a few hours on his way
to Oyster Bay, but denied that he had visited
Wall Street or taken part in any conference.
Mr. Bacon, formerly a member of the firm of
J. P. Morgan & Co., went into the Morgan offices
as quietly as possible, and after a brief talk with
J. P. Morgan, Jr., went into conference with
the head of the banking house. They were
joined by James Stillman, president of the Na
tional City bank, and by two other financiers.
To complete the conference the telephone was
resorted to, as it was not deemed wise to have
many of the financial magnates gather in person.
Among those said to have been called on the
telephone were Jacob Schiff, of Kuhn, Loeb &
Co.; James Speyer, of Speyer & Co.; George F.
Baker, president of the First National bank;
John S. Kennedy, and possibly William Rocke
feller. The report that Elihu Root had visited
the Street was followed by one that he was
about to resign from the cabinet unless the
president did something to relieve the desperate
straits in which the trusts find themselves."
THE NEW YORK Journal of Commerce in
its issue of August 20 declared that At
torney General Bonaparte will soon retire,
which would mean, of course, that Root - and
Bacon had won out. The Journal of Commerce
said: "According to important interests in this
city, very close to the administration, the useful
ness of Attorney General Bonaparte as a mem
ber of tho president's cabinet has culminated.
It is not expected that immediate retirement will
result, for such action might be construed as a
sign of weakening in the president's anti-trust
policy a construction particularly distasteful to
Mr. Roosevelt, since not the slightest justifica
tion exists for It. But there is no question, ac
cording to the excellent information obtained
last evening, that the president is not only not
in sympathy with the recent flippant and undig
nified attitude and the atf least doubtful legal
procedure displayed by the attorney general,
but is in all respects opposed to them. The at
torney general's policy, it is understood is con
demned by all the president's most trusted ad
visers, and there is excellent reason to believe
some important changes in the cabinet would
constitute a protest against executive indorse
ment of Mr. Bonaparte's program. Secretary
Root, for instance, is known to have expressed
strong criticism of it, while Assistant Secretary
of State Robert Bacon is also entirely out of
sympathy with the attorney general's policy."
THE NEW YORK atmosphere has recently
been full of all sorts of rumors, and these
involved prospective changes in the president's
cabinet owing to differences as to the adminis
tration's policies. One New York dispatch says:
"Assistant Secretary of State Robert Bacon rep
resenting President Roosevelt, has been in con
ference at the offices of J. P. Morgan, meeting
Wall Street -financiers in a talk regarding 'the
financial situation. Charles T,,' Birney, president
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A PAMPHLET relative to the $29,240,000 fine
, has been circulated among the employes
and stockholders of the Standard Oil trust.
This document contains the statement made
by President Mofflt, president of the Standard
Oil company of Indiana, and a number of edi
torial articles favorable to the company, taken
from various subsidized newspapers. The note
worthy feature of the pamphlet is as follows:
"The directors of the Standard Oil company de
sire to emphasize the assurance of the com
pany's absolute innocence of wrongdoing in any
of the prosecutions lately instituted against it
in the federal courts. Particularly is this so in
the Chicago & Alton railroad case made notor
ious by the sensational fine of $29,240,000. It
should be known as widely as possible that this
is no case of rebate or discrimination, but simply
of the legality of a freight rate. It should be
known that that verdict was obtained by the
government upon the most hair-splitting tech
nicality, aided by the rigorous exclusion of evi
dence that would have removed all presumption
of guilt. If the judgment be allowed to stand
the company will be forced to pay fifty times
the" value of the oil for every carload carried
over the Alton road during the two years at
1 jan open six-cent rate a rate used . over three
(competing railroads for from ten to-fourteen
ilhyears. The trial judge refused to allow nronf
Mjjthat the six-cent rate was a legal rate. He
tMtinsisted that eighteen cents was tlA nniv ici
- .-j jfc'
rate for oil when no one had even paid it and
when it was authoritatively sworn that it did
not apply to oil. To the higher courts we must
look for that calm judgment which will rescue
the rights of the citizen from the field of public
clamor and from the domain of vindictive poli
tics. So persistent and adroit has been the war
fare waged with all the overpowering authority
of the federal administration against the Stand
ard Oil company that it has been manifestly diffi
cult to get a fair hearing before the public or
in a large portion of the press, the latter, to its
great harm, swayed alike by socialistic outcry
from below and political pressure from above.
As proof of the latter it may be noted that in
the president's message of May 4, 1906, attack
was made on the Standard Oil company for tho
purpose of forcing the passage of the bill re
mitting the duty on denatured alcohol a meas
ure in which the company was not interested.
On May 17, 1906, the issue of Commissioner
Garfield's report on petroleum transportation,
a tissue of pld misrepresentations, was timed to
influence the Hepburn rate bill then before con
gress. On May 20, 1907, while Judge Landis
had still under consideration the judgment in
the Chicago and Alton case, Commissioner
Smith's illogical and partisan report on pipe
lines was made public. The commissioner's sec
ond report on petroleum prices and profits a
wholly false deduction from Incomplete facts
was sent in advance to the press for publication
on August 5 in the knowledge that Judge
Landis would pronounce judgment August 3.
Here surely is evidence of a combination in
fluencing all sources of-public opinion, disturb
ing the orderly disposition of justice, sanction
ing in advance, and supporting when made, the
most sensational opinions ana judgments hos
tile' to the company. What motive underlies the
campaign of defamation need not here be dis
cussed, but for all- friends and foes, and it is
reiterated that the Standard Oil company is
carrying on a widespread business of great mo
ment to the prosperity of the American people
in absolute obedience to the soundest principles
of" business and to the spirit and letter of the
law. Attacks upon it of the kind described are
aimed at the nation's industrial and mercantile
life." v
AT- THE LAYING of the corner stone of tho
Cape Cod Pilgrim Memorial monument at
Provincetown, Mass., Mr. Roosevelt delivered an
address which, it' had been said, was "feverishly
awaited" by Wall Street. From this address
these notable extracts are taken: "During the
present trouble with the stock market I have,
of course, received countless requests and sug
gestions, public and private, that I should say
or do something to ease the situation. There is
a world-wide financial disturbance. It is felt
in the bourses of Paris and Berlin and British
consols are lower, while prices of railway securi
ties have also depreciated. On the New York
stock exchange the disturbance has been par
ticularly severe, most of it, I believe to be due
to matters not particularly confined to the
Unjted States and to matters wholly unconnect
ed with any governmental action, but It may
well be thatrthe determination of the govern
ment in which, gentlemen, it will not waver,
to punish certain malefactors of great wealth,
has been responsible for something of the
troubles, at least to the extent of having caused
these men to combine to bring about as much
financial stress as they possibly can in order to
discredit the policy of the government and there
by to secure a reversal of that policy so that
they may enjoy the fruits of their own evil
doings. That they have misled many good" peo
ple into believing that there' should be such
reversal of policy is possible. If so, I am sorry,
but it will not alter my attitude. Once for all,
let me say that, as far as I am concerned, and
for the eighteen months of my administration
that remain, there will be no change in' the
policy we have steadily pursued, nor let up in
the effort to secure the honest observance of
the law, for I regard this contest as one to
determine who shall rule this governmentfp-the
people through their governmental agentsr.or a
few ruthless and determined men whose wealth,
'makes them particularly formidablo-r-bechusa
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