The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, July 21, 1911, Page 5, Image 5

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The Commoner.
JULY 21, ltll
people that thay may grot rich by robbing eacK
other. It U a fraud in that K lagalbcc piracy
on tho part of one locality against another. The
producers of one commodity are permitted to
collect tribute from the producers of some other
commodity, who in turn are given right to
pilfer gome other line of producers. The wider
and more extended this system of privilege be
comes, the harder it will be for the government
to eradicate it.
This tariff pauper differs from the ordinary
pauper, in that In one instance the poorer
member of society Is supported by the state,
while in the other the more oppulent Is the one
supported. The men of millions are the ones
benefited by this protection of industry, not
those who toll. The evils of this national fraud
are far-reaxxhing, and will take us half a cen
tury to blot out. No government is in a posi
tion to instruct its people in truth and honor
which advocates an economic falsehood, and
participates in a national game of piracy. The
state might as well try to legitimatize any other
form of piracy upon the high seas, as to attempt
to render equitable tariff piracy within the state.
The democracy of the nation, as well as the
nation itself faces a crisis. We must not be
deluded by the siren song as to temporary "vic
tory." We must not accept a barren victory
either of measures or of men. Measures can
not be carried out without men who are not
afraid. The democratic party Is fortunate In
having an abundance of presidential timber.
Therefore let those who have been on the fir
ing line for years lead the way, and let the
recent converts help in the revival. If Mr.
Bryan deems it best not to become a candi
dae, why not Governor Folk? He has been
weighed in the balances and not found wanting.
Count upon Washington as being progressive.
Yours for progressive democracy.
York, Pa., July 5, 1911. Editor Commoner:
I have been a reader of your paper for several
years past, and have secured a number of sub
scribers. Nothing would give mo greater satis
faction than to know that your paper went each
week into the homes of two millions of Ameri
cans citizens. Our country would have a better
citizenship, If The Commoner would be read in
every state of the union, and if it held the place
in the hearts of the people that it does In mine.
It gives us information we can not get from any
other newspaper. Some of us in York have
been noticing each week the column headed,
"Watch It Grow." I have taken the trouble
several times to count up the number of sub
scriptions secured in one week. It would be a
matter of considerable convenience to your
readers If you would give the total number each
week. One week I counted It up to more
than eleven hundred. MoBt of our so-called
"great dailies," and many of our "weeklies"
have exhausted their efforts in ways to secure
-new subscribers; but I do not believe there has
over been a paper known whose readers were as
Teady to secure subscribers as have the readers
of The Commoner, without being offered a
You had an Interesting article on the front page
of your last Issue, "A Possible Compromise." The
manner of choosing United States senators has
been discussed among some of us democrats a
good deal, and we have been wondering for a
long time why no one has suggested allowing the
states to uBe whatever method they see fit. It is
worse than absurd, that a few congressmen should
be allowed to propose the method by which the
states shall select their ambassadors, and then
offer them that method, or go on as they have
been doing.
The time Is long overdue when the states
should exercise their sovereignty, and meet to
gether in a body of delegates to revise the con
stitution. It should be nobody's business out
side the citizenship of the state, as to what
method is used to select her federal senators, or
ambassadors, as some of our great statesmen in
the past have chosen to designate them. When
the states do assemble in convention to revise
the constitution, as they surely will some day,
I hope that one of the first points to be considered
will be an age limit for the members of congress.
The congress has seen fit to put an age limit
on officers of the army and navy, and upon
members of the federal courts, yet there is no
place on earth where there is greater necessity
for an age 'limit than in the congress of the
United States. Men are there today who are
long past their years of usefulness, while others
have served so long that the knowledge gained
Representative Pinly H. Gray, in tho
house of representatives: "Along with
the tariff on woolen clothing, behind
which the woolen manufacturers have
intrenched themselves for fifty years to
exact millions in tributo annually from
the people, there Is a tariff on raw wool,
placed there and kept there at tho de
mands of. the woolen manufacturers
themselves. And while this tariff would
have the effect, if allowed to operate, to
Increase the cost of tho manufacturers
raw material, yet wo are confronted with
the spectacle of the woolen manufactur
ers, their agents, attorneys and special
representatives entreating and implor
ing congress to allow the tariff on wool
to remain, and to permit them to con
tinue the payment of a tax on their raw
"Why have the woolen manufacturers
thus demanded and why are thoy still
demanding a tariff upon wool and ask
ing to bo permitted to continue tho pay
ment of this tax? Let no man bo de
ceived In their purpose. It Is a strata
gem to gain tho wool grower's support
for a tariff upon manufactured wool, to
blind him with self-interest, to make him
a party to the crime of extortion and
close his mouth against the evils of pri
vate monopoly and the exploitation of
tho consumers of wooltii clothing."
in long service is invariably used to thwart legis
lation in the interest of tho people. Twelve years
in tho senate, or fourteen years in the house,
should be long enough for any man to serve in
tho congress. I know that some will answer that
many of our greatest statesmen have done their
best work after serving long terms, but I would
answer that by stating that more of them have
done their poorest work after serving long terms
In the congress.
Let us consider this suggestion a little and
see what it would do for the present congress,
if no ono was allowed to sit in that body who
had passed the age of seventy years, and if no
one would be allowed to serve more than four
teen years in the house, or twelve years in the
The spectacle of the United States senate be
ing in session three months without accomplish
ing more than should be done in one month,
seems to me a conclusive argument against allow
ing old men, and men of more than two terms
to be there. Yours truly, P. W. BIGGER.
Mr. Bryan's suggestion of a basis of compro
mise between tho house and the senate in tho
controversy over federal control in the direct
election of senators is worthy of consideration.
His proposal, as reported from Washington, Is to
give the states authority to elect as they choose,
either indirectly through the legislature or
directly by vote of the people.
He Is confident, no doubt, that nearly all if
not all would select the latter method, and that
the legislatures would be compelled by public
sentiment to grant the privilege of a direct vote.
Aside from the fact that this plan is offered
as a compromise it has a value. There may be
stated In which opinion Inclines heavily toward
the Indirect method, states in which general
assemblies have served admirably the purpose
of selecting men for the upper branch of tho
national legislature, states which have found the
provisions of the constitution as it stands en
tirely suited to their needs.
This is not the case with tho majority, and
for that reason it is safe to assume that
authority to change the method of election once
given would bo used quickly. In any case Mr.
Bryan's plan is designed to remove most of
the opposition to the change. Chicago Tribune.
Senator Reed of Missouri calls attention to
the fact that the Missouri democratic state con
vention last year endorsed Joseph W. Folk as
Missouri's candidate for the presidency. So far
as 1912 Is concerned Senator Reed adds: "The
Missouri delegation to the national conven
tion will be a delegation devoted to the support
of Governor Folk."
Practical Tariff Talks
Ono effect of tho reduction of the wool tariff
will bo tho breaking of the power of price-fixing
now possessed by the woolen trust. One
reason for tho universal objection to tho present
Schodulo K is that under it the trust has not
only told tho wool growor what he should got
for his product, but it has pormitted that trust
to say to tho Jobber at what price he should
sell its products. Ainplo proof of this markot
control can bo shown whonovor necessity arises.
Tho basis of this control, of courso, lies in tho
manner in which tho old schedule was drawn.
It was a direct inducement for combination, and
under tho Dlngley law this conspiracy In re
straint of trade reached its maximum of power.
Just what that power is may bo learnod In part
by a study of tho tables of imports and exports.
In 1909 thoro wore produced In tho United
States worstod and woolen goods to tho value
of $420,000,000, and a total of all woolen manu
facturers of $515,000,000. For that yoar our
imports wero $18,000,000 and our exports $2,
000,000. Reduced to porcontagoB this moans
that of our total consumption but 3 per cent
camo from abroad, while wo sent abroad loss
than one-half of 1 por cent of what we produced.
In tho matter of cloth alono our imports wero
approximately 3 per cent of our production. This
Is tho clearest possible proof of tho prohibitory
character of the tariff schedules. Now In prac
tically every other department of American
manufactures our exports are considerable. Why
aro they practically negligible In woolen cloths?
It Is not because our workmen in tho woplen
mills aro less skilful than those In our atcol
mills. Tho productive power of tho American
worker Is greater than that of tho English
worker in a number of industries, as Investiga
tion has disclosed. What is there about tho
making of cloth that prevents that being truo
in this industry?
In fact tho American workmen, In a ''factory
equipped with high grade machinery, produces
more goods than does tho workman in foreign
factories. Tho proof is furnished by tho trust
itself. In a circular issued somo years ago for
tho purpose of inducing investment in its stock,
this statomont was made: "Tho Washington
mills wero started undor tho first administra
tion of President Cleveland, and despite tho va
garies of tho tariff for tho next twelve years, It
prospered and succeeded in an unparallelod de
gree. The fact Is that with tho progress that
has been made In woolen machinery and the In
creased skill of our American operatives tho
woolen business in America is rapidly reaching
a position where even a return to tho condi
tions similar to those existing under tho Wilson
bill would not seriously impair Its profitable
ness." While, ordinarily, claims made In a
stock-selling campaign are susceptible to heavy
discount, tho fact recited in this statement co
incides precisely with those made in reference to
other industries, and lot it be remembered-
are evidence presented by the trust itself.
There is but ono possible explanation That
is that the home market Is so profitable and
so largo that it is poor business policy to extend
production to tho point where any considerable
quantity of American made cloth must compete
in the world's market with cloth from tho looms
of other countries. To monopolize the Ameri
can market, great and growing as it is, is suffi
cient. This monopoly is most complete in tho
clothes that go into the suits and dresses of the
middle and lower classes because it is upon
these that the highest tariff is levied. This re
sults In restricting imports to those goods used
by the wealthier classes. On cloth valued at 40
cents a pound or less which means about 40
cents a yard wholesale tho tariff is 144.05 per
cent. On that between 40 and 70 cents a pound
tho tariff is 123.55 per cent, while on that above
70 cents a pound the duty Is 96 per cent. The
result of this rank discrimination In favor of
tho rich Is thus shown in the importations: On
tho higher-priced cloths the revenue was ?5,827,
776.80; on the next highest it was $274,246.50,
while on tho lowest-priced it was but $2,111.
The real meaning of this is that tho average
man has been left by the tho Payne-Aldrich law
at tho mercy of the woolen trust and it knows
no mercy. Tho bill proposed by tho democrats
levies an average of 40 per cent on cloth, instead
of 144.05 per cent. C. Q. D.
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