The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, December 10, 1909, Image 1
F The Commoner. WILLIAM J. BRYAN, EDITOR AND PROPRIETOR VOL. 9, NO. 48 Located at Last i ?&o.;Houaton (Texas) Post is at last located on the matter of platforms. It dodges the first part, of Mr. Bryan's plank on the subject of platforms. It insists that a platform is not a pledge given by the candidate to the voters, but a pledge given by Ills party to the voters. This is a quibble. A party does not act except through delegates or through officials. When a candidate is selected he becomes a representa tive of the party, and as he is the one who, if elected, is to act for the party, the platform is his pledge as well as his party's pledge, whether it is written by himself with the consent of the convention, or written by the convention for him. The important part of the Post edi torial, therefore, is as follows: "We can heartily agree with that clause of Mr. Bryan's platform plank which says, 'and when ratified at the polls becomes a contract between an official and his constituents.'" After heartily agreeing with this clause of the platform proposed by Mr. Bryan, the Post adds: "Now what is Mr. Bryan's ' grievance against Senator Bailey's votes against free raw materials? The Denver platform was not ratified at the polls and when it failed, in dividual democrats, whether in public or private lifS were free to contend for policies which they deemed to best represent the principles of de mocracy and promote, the public welfare. Sen ator Bailey, freed from any obligation in the premises, took a strong stand against the policy 6f free, raw materials, against which the democ racy of Texas jtfas, expressly committed." - The Post's position will bo entitled to the -premiumstall if an exhibit is ever made of freak .-ISSVtasffJlJ6- Jjtea.tljOLj: a national defeat of a plat form absolves vthjose, democrats who; are elected on the platform would not occur to a man unless lie were in desperate straits, the argument is not, mu substantial as tho straw at which the drowning man is supposed to grasp. Texas en dorsed the Denver platform by a deliberate act of -her last convention, and Texas weht demo cratic by a big majority, as did a number of spates and a great many congressional districts. What difference did it make to , the democrats of Texas if Pennsylvania, New "York, Illinois, Ohio and many other states rejected the plat form? It represented the sentiment of the peo ple of Texas, and the sentiment of the districts that went democratic, and certainly it was a pledge between the democrats elected and their constituents for it was "ratified at the polls" so far as these democrats were concerned. If the Denver platform ceased to be binding upon democratic congressmen and democratic Genators merely because the republican platform gas -"endorsed at the national election will the Post claim that the democratic congressmen are bound by the republican platform? If not, its position must be that all republican officials aro CONTENTS LOCATED AT LAST t -v -WHO WILL OBJECT? ' V LIQUOR QUESTION AT WASHINGTON WHAT ABOUT PUBLICITY? THE BANK MONOPOLY WINS EDUCATIONAL SERIES "OKLAHOMA'S' ' ' " FINANCIAL MUDDLE" PRACTICAL TARIFF TALKS REVISION NO CENTRAL BANK NEEDED THE PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE CURRENT TOPICS HOME DEPARTMENT COMMON OR NOT "I" ..LETTERS FROM THE PEOPLE . , , - NEWS OF THE WEEK ZELAYA AND HIS GOVERNMENT - Lincoln, Nebraska, December 10, 1909 Whole Number 464 bound by tho republican national platform bo cause it was ratified at a national election, and that tho democratic national platform, being rejected at a national election, Is not binding in any way. Does a democratic representative ceaso to represent his constiouoncy merely bo cause peoplo in another district or another state do not accept his platform? Is a Texas congressman or a Texas senator free to vote with tho republicans merely because tho plat form upon which ho was elected did not re ceive a national endorsement? Tho endorse ment of a democratic platform by the peoplo of a district is just as binding upon tho official as is tho endorsement of tho official himself Ho can not honorably accept tho election and' yet repudiate the platform which was endorsed by tho same vote. "Strange what a tangled web" tho democrat weaves when ho starts out to find reasons for endorsing special interests. LIQUOR QUESTION AT WASHINGTON Tho federal congress must sooner or later take notice of the activity of the liquor inter ests and their attempt to control tho action of the federal government. They havo entered national politics, and will pollute everything that they touch until they aro driven out. Wo havo already seen democratic congressmen dragged into tho republican camp by these in terests, when a fight was being made over tho rules of the house, for there is no question of tho activity of the liquor Interests In supporting Cannonism. Federal licenses aro how issued to those who desire to sell liquor in territory In which ocal licenses are denied, and tho brew ers and -dlBf.Wena-aro still using interstato com merce to nullify the laws of tho various states. Surely there can bo no excuse for the issue of federal licenses to liquor dealers Jn territory where the local authorities have prohibited tho sale of liquor. The charge for a federal license is $25 per year, and when a federal license is issued upon the payment of this sum tho fed eral government either obtains tho money with out consideration or it enters into partnership with the violator of tho law. Three objections have been made to the proposition that tho federal government should refuse to issue licenses in dry territory, namely, First, that taxes should be uniform and that the government can not, therefore, collect a license tax In one community and refuse to collect such tax in another; Second, that tho federal government could not prosecute a per son for selling without license if it refused to issue a license; and third, that tho issuo of a federal license is useful in that It enables tho local authorities to ascertain from tho record who are engagedin the traffic. These three ob jections might be met by a law reducing tho license to $1, and providing that notice of tho issue of such license be posted immediately in the postoffice In the town in which tho licensee resides and requiring publication of notice in a local newspaper. The $1 would not more than cover the cost of issuing and record ing the license and posting tho notice, and such a law would take the government out of part nership with tho law breakers. By what logic can one justify the action of the federal government In permitting interstato commerce to bo used to nullify state regulation of. the liquor traffic? If a state can be trusted to protect property and to prescribe rules for the descent of estates, can it not bo entrusted with the power to regulate the sale and use of liquor? If the state can be entrusted with tho enactment and enforcement of criminal laws, even to the exacting of the 'death penalty, can it not be entrusted with the power to control tho liquor traffic? It can, of course, be taken for granted that the liquor interests will oppose any legislation which has for its object the protection of society from the evils of intemperance, and they will, as they have in the past, threaten any party which refuses to bow down to the god which they have set up, but the democratic party can better afford to invite their opposition than grovel in the dust to secure their approval. Who Will Object? Mr. Honry Wattorson roturns from a lonr rest in Europe In a very bad frame of mind. In nn Ill-tempered editorial printed in tho Loulsvillo Courier-Journal Mr. Wattorson gives character to tho fako printod In a newspaper dispatch to tho effect that Mr. Bryan lntond to make an offort to push prohibition as a na tional Issuo. William Marion Reedy, tho talontcd editor or tho St. Louis Mirror, referring to tho same fahio report, prints this editorial: "If I were a brewer I would say this la a good omen, having In mind Mr. Bryan's con firmed habit as a loser. Prohibition Is a silly issue, for one good and sufficient reason: it isn t necessary. Tho liquor ovil Is being knocked out In tho natural courso of economic and social development. Tho struggle for existence Is do ing tho trick without tho aid of fanatic laws. In fact, such laws retard tho progress of tem perance. But then It may be that Mr. Bryan is not correctly reported. If so ho that he Is correctly reported, why then Mri Bryan Is simply tho victim of recurrence of his mania for con tinuous novelty Irf paramount Issues." The San Antonio (Texas) Express says: "Mr. Bryan of Nebraska Is credited with the dcalro to make prohibition of the liquor traffic tho paramount Issue In tho democratic national campaign," For the benefit of Mr. Wattorson. to whom ill-natured conduct Is peculiarly unbecoming and of the other editors quoted, It m'iiyb tfald that Mr. Bryan does not expect to seo prohibi tion a paramount JsHuoiiiMtHl.polltJc. It that over comes It is not likely to bis' In Mr; Bryan's day, Mr. Bryan may, however, bo truthfully cred ited with a desire to assist In securing, for tho several states, absolute and exclusive control over the liquor traffic Including control over all shipments of liquor as soon an the liquor enters tho state. It will be interesting to seo how some democratic editors will oxp'lain their opposition to tho good old demooratlcdoctrino .that tho state ought to be allowed to attend' to its own business. I ' WHAT ABOUT PUBLICITY? .""A Washington dispatch carried by tho Asso ciated Press says: "A gag order affecting tho furnishing of information to any cpmmitteo of tho house or senate or any member of con gress except as authorized by tho head of tho department in which such official serves, has been promulgated by tho president. Tho order just made public Is directed at bureau officers or division chiefs and officers of the army, navy and marine corps stationed in Washington. In explanation of the order It was stated at tho executive offices that it had for Its object tho centralization of authority in tho heads of de partments." Here is another of the famous "Roosevelt policies" gone glimmering. What about "pub licity, publicity, publicity" of which we heard so much during tho Roosevelt administration heard so much and saw so little? THE BANK MONOPOLY WINS The press dispatches state that while Presi dent Taft will recommend the postal savings bank congress will not push the plan until next year. The postal savings bank' will stand asldo and give the central bank the right of way. As Wall Street is back of the central bank and opposes the postal bank it would seem that tho Wall Street crowd makes a double killing. And still there are republicans who can not see that tho party is in the clutches of the predatory Interests. REACTIONARY The Republican party, as at present organized, is no place for a progressive. It is reactionary and getting more so. Plutocracy Is in control. -''v Ailith-jfrnL:i , m tttuiJ)ui"iix-&'