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About The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923 | View Entire Issue (July 9, 1909)
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WlIXIAM J. UllTAN
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Kicuaiu) L. MrrcAi.rr.
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THE COMMONER, Lincoln, Neb.
tho use of tobacco was so general that it might
truthfully bo listed as one of tho necessities of
life. In 1898, when the government was sorely
in need of revenue, it increased tho tariff tax
on tobacco. Deluded by the belief that the
consumer was a substantiality instead of a
myth, in the sanio act in, which it assessed tho
tobacco manufacturers a greater internal rev
enue tax, it also granted these manufacturers
tho right to reduce tho size of tho packages
thoy had theretoforo boon selling at a stipulated
price. In a tow years, with tho war at an ond,
the tax was put back at the old figure, but, by
some chance oversight, of course, congress neg
lected to repeal that section relating to the size
of packages. Ever since 1902 the tobacco trust
has been selling the small sized package and
paying tho original revenue tax.
In a speech the other day Senator Beveridgo
computed that by this legislation the govern
ment had handed over to tho tobacco trust in
tho last eight years the right to collect a .tax
of $180,000,000 from the users of tobacco.
Would not Senator Lodge have a difficult time
of it convincing the men who have paid this
tax that they do not exist? C. Q. D.
"TAFT'S SERVICE TO ALDRICH"
Immediately after the republican national
convention of 1908 Senator LaFollette sent to
Mr. Taft the following telegram:
"Madison, Wisconsin, June 18. William H.
Taft, Washington, D. C. While the platform is
disappointing in some fundamental provisions
and omissions, and I shall claim tho right to
say bo, I congratulate you most sincerely and.
IN THE FAITH THAT YOU ARE MORE
NEARLY IN ACCORD WITH THE GREAT
BODY OF REPUBLICAN VOTERS THAN THE
PLATFORM, I shall do all in my power to in
sure your election.
"ROBERT M. LAFOLLETTE."
AFTER THE ELECTION
Just to what extent Senator LaFolletto's faith
was justified may be shown by an editorial
appearing in Senator X.aFollette's paper and en
titled, "Taft's Service to Aldrich." In this
article Editor LaFollette says:
"President Taft has from tho beginning of
. his administration enjoyed the good will of tho
nation. The people generally, .tho press, and
congress have been disposed to credit him with
high motives and unwilling to criticise any pub
lic act unfairly.
"LaFolette's shares this feeling that has pre
vailed for Mr. Taft, and no one would bo moro
reluctant to believe otherwise. But it -would
bo a betrayal of the work we have undortakin
if we did not say from our point of view tho
president's recent message to congress was In
opportune and not in the public interest.
It is recalled that at the opening of tho spe
cial session, it was expected President Taft
would send in a message telling what kind of a
tariff bill ho wanted, tho aTticle says, and
"No greater opportunity for executive recom
mendation ever could como to a president. An
expression of his views at that time respecting
an income tax or a corporation tax would have
carried great weight with congress and with
tho public. That he didn't send such a message
can only be explained on tho ground that he
believed congress well understood his attitude
and that there was no danger of the president
framing a law he could not approve, either as
to tariff schedules or as to an income tax."
Then, reciting the history of the tariff bill and
telling how Aldrich has revised the tariff up
wards it is pointed out that Mr. Taft might have
given great help to progressives, who were fight
ing for downward revision and that the progres
sives failed to get downward revision, but that
under the leadership of Senators Cummins and
Bailey an alliance was formed that insured the
passage of an income tax. Then, it is said, Mr.
Aldrich made a hurry call on the president to
defeat the income tax by the use of the corpor
ation tax. Senator LaFollette criticises Presi
dent Taft for not giving Senators Cummins,
Borah and other progressive senators a hearing
before writing his message.
The president's changed views on the income
tax are then referred to in the article, which
concludes as follows:
"The president assumed that the corporation
tax is unconstitutional, but with due regard for
his learning and experience, it must be admitted
that he might serve to change his views on this
question also. It certainly appears to raise
some complex legal questions, that can only be
settled by the decision of the supreme court.
One fact stands out high and plain above all
else in the situation. This message came to
congress at a most opportune time to serve the
fixed, determination of Senator Aldrich to de
feat the income tax and to aid him in passing
the tariff bill with its excessively high duties' just
as he wanted it.
"The president holds out the inducement that
tho information as to business and business
methods incidentally gained In the collection of
a corporation tax would, be useful in govern
ment supervision of corporations. Whatever the
president may expect in this direction we may
be sure that such a purpose is no part of Mr.
Aldrich's plan. Knowledge of tho income of
over-capitalized public service corporations and
of many private corporations is an important
factor In their control. But this question of
the control of trusts and combinations is by far
the most important problem before the country
for this quarter century, relatively much moro
important than the tariff. This great question
can not be treated hurriedly as a second thought
to a tariff measure. All who have had experi
ence In a struggle for control of railway corpor
ations understand that. To place dependence
for basic information on a hurriedly prepared
amendment to a tariff bill, rushed through an
extra session of congress, which may be years
going through the courts and finally declared
unconstitutional, is a clever, but not unknown,
expedient to avert all effective legislation on a
subject that will not down."
VOLUME! 9, NUMBER 2f
gion in 1901 the record shows the following!
Q. Is it a fact generally proved of all G.
porters in this country that they do sell at low
prices In foreign markets than they do in tho
homemarkets? A. That Is true, perfectly true
Q. Would you gay that when business is in
a normal condition the export prices are regu
larly somewhat lower than homo prices? A
Oh, yes, always.
Next let's hear from Hon. Jeremiah Rusk
President Harrison's secretary of agriculture
Ho makes the assertion that Senator Aldrich
says he can prove to be untrue. He said
I had an opportunity to take some stock in
tho combination (American Harvester company)
and I know what inducements were offered An
Investigation will show that this same combin
ation is now selling or offering to sell, machin
ery in Russia and Australia and other wheat
growing countries at a lower figure than they
do in this country."
It would be easy to produce more witnesses,
but these all republicans and protectionists,
Agricultural implements are manufactured
cheaper in this country than in any other and
are exported all over the world. Not a dollar's
worth of them has been imported in twelve
years. Jacksonville (Fla.) Times-Union.
Do you know what it was that caused you to
Only a year ago?
Can you tell me the source of your utmost
Only a year ago?
It looked big to you then and you moped and
The long nights were sleepless and troubled
Yet you can't tell what happened, in looking
Only a year ago?
Do you know why you frowned as you jour--neyed
Only a month ago?
Can you tell now what made all your blue skies
Only a month ago?
What trouble was it that your happiness marred,
That caused you to say that your heart had
And from all future joys In this world you
Only a month ago?
You've forgotten them all, both the great and
The pain and the woe;
For few are the troubles we ever recall
As onward we go.
Ah, few are the troubles, my brother, that last.
They seem big at first, but the moment's they're
They slip from the mind, for they never stick
It is well that it's so.
Detroit Free Press.
A QUESTION OF EVIDENCE
Senator Aldrich says tho prices of agricul
tural implements are lower in this country than
abroad. He promised that ho would submit
absolute proof from the department of com
merce and labor that the International Harves
ter company did not charge higher prices for
their implements in this country than abroad.
Wo will admit that Senator Aldrich can prove
anything ho wishes by the department of com
merce and labor that is If we are confiding
enough to accept the statements of that depart
ment as proof. But while Senator Aldrich is
getting his witnesses together wo will offer a
few of our own. The first one we will call to
the stand is Nelson W. Aldrich who in a speech
in the senate, delivered Juno 2, 1906, said:
"It is a well known fact about which there
is no dispute that producers In tho United States
and in every one of the great Industrial nations
sell portions of their products from time to time
at a less price to people of other countries than
to their regular customers at home."
When Charles M. Schwa.b of the Carnegie
Steel company, afterwards president of the steel
trust, testified before the industrial commls-
A REPUBLICAN SENATOR'S OPINION
OF A REPUBLICAN ATTORNEY
The following Associated Press dis-
patch explains itself:
Washington, July 1. During his
speech in the senate this afternoon on
the income tax, Senator Borah of Idaho
declared that the facts regarding "the
great and shocking crime of the sugar
trust, which branded many government
officials and employes as criminal or in-
competent, had lain in the attorney gen-
eral's office for months," and that no
action was taken until private Individ-
uals uncovered the crime and moved the
"When I saw," he said, "that the only
answer given when they were asked why
they did not prosecute was that quizzi-
cal, cynical, inscrutable, insufferable
smile that so often plays over the imper-
ialistic features of the attorney general
when I see these things I am amazed,
not that the people are socialistic or rest-
less, but that they continue to have an
abiding faith and abiding belief in this
great government under which we live."-
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