The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, September 22, 1911, Image 1
The Commoner WILLIAM J. BRYAN, EDITOR AND PROPRIETOR VOL. 11, NO. 37 Lincoln, Nebraska, September 22, 1911 Whole Number 557 The Campaign in Canada The readers of The Commoner may bo in terested in hearing about the fight over recipro city in Canada. (Tho election was held September 21.) I am making a ten-days lec ture tour through New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward's Island and Capo Briton Island under the auspices of tho Y. M. C. A. this being the only populated section of Canada that I had not visited. Arrangements were made for the trip before the parliamentary election was called, so that this pleasure was unexpected. The campaign is on and it is getting hotter and hotter each day at the rate tho tempera ture is rising it is fortunate that election day is not far away. I am, following a long estab lished rule, keeping out of the discussion. I do not discuss American politics away from home because foreigners do not understand our politics, and I do not discuss the politics of tho countries I visit because I fear I might betray a lack of understanding of their politics. But the situation in Canada is so much like the situation in our country that I am greatly enjoying tho fight. Tho real issue is the old economic one between protection and a tariff for revenue only, colored by a few side issues .-which we do not have. -The protectionists are combatting any reduction of the tariff and threatening dire disaster to Canadian industries if the wall is lowered. Manufacturers are giving out interviews and the anti-reciprocity papers are printing "scare head" estimates of the number of men who will be thrown out of employment if recipro city carries. Here are the views of one promi nent manufacturer: "I ask your readers not to misunderstand me. I am not claiming that our tariff will be im mediately broken down. For the first year, pos sibly, things would go smoothly, and an in creased immigration take place from the American west; they look forward to the great advantages that they are to reap in the future. "We have witnessed in the past an immense delegation of farmers from the west, which, it must be conceded, was embarrassing to the government. How will the government stand, when farmers' deputations pour in from every section of tho country demanding free trade? The only possible excuse to pacify them would be, 'We must raise our revenue.' "A revenue tariff, pure and simple, to the manufacturer, means practically nothing for them. A revenue tariff is to let goods in, to collect the revenue. A protective tariff is to keep them out; to produce them at home, main taining a healthy, strong labor market, ensur- CONTENTS CAMPAIGN IN CANADA SENATOR BAILEY'S RETIREMENT THE PRESIDENT'S DEFENSE GOVERNOR ALDRICH'S PROTEST AGAINST INVASION OF STATE'S RIGHTS BY FEDERAL COURTS THE RULE OF REASON WHAT MR. TAFT WILL MEET ON HIS WESTERN TRIP THE CENTRAL BANK BY H. S. MARTIN OF KANSAS HOW THE SUGAR TRUST MADE SIX MILLIONS BY BOOSTING PRICES HOME DEPARTMENT NEWS OF THE WEEK WASHINGTON NEWS WICKERSHAM AND THE TRUSTS ing employment for our own citizens at remune rative wages, keeping the money in our own country; building prosperous cities; adding vast ly to tho value of agricultural lands by creat ing a home market; creating opportunities for our rising young men, and ensuring a prosper ous country." The friends of reciprocity are, however, well supplied with papers and they are as energeti cally picturing tho advantages of freer trade be tween tho countries. One of these papers pub lishes the picture of a railway station in China with the following comment: "This Is a picture of one of the few railway stations in China, a country which so fervently desires to 'let well enough alone' that tho pro posal to build a new road in tho province of Szechuan has aroused armed revolt. They fear tho menace of trade with the outer world. Local demagogues tell them that it means tho invasion of their markets, the undermining of their national independence and ultimate an nexation. Transportation in China is for tho most part by means of canals and rivers, and the roadways are narrow or ill-paved. In some places grooved stones are laid in the roadway as a track for wheelbarrows. But the 'let well alone' party in China is still strong." The Canadian Pacific railroad is opposing reciprocity. Sir William Van Home, tho ex president, "fights for St. John," declares tho St. John Standard in big headlines. Tho read ers of the sakl journal are informed that Sir William "plainly shows the folly of the Laurler Taft agreoment," etc. Some of the defenders of reciprocity offset this by publishing an ad vertisement which appeared in tho window of the Canadian Pacific land office in Seattle an nouncing that "Reciprocity will increase Canada lands one hundred per cent," but this is at once answered by a telegram from the Seattle agent who says: "This sign was not authorized by the Canadian .Pacific Railway company, nor by me nor by any one in authority in the office but by a clerk during my absence and was im mediately removed on my return." How much this is like the closing days of our campaigns. The partisanship of the paper amuses the on-looker. Here is an instance: The St. John Telegraph says, "Sir Wilfred Laurier Is making the. greatest campaign of his career. Cheerful, confident, convincing, the great liberal leader is everywhere a herald of victory." The St. John Standard, on tho other hand, (on the same morning) took its readers into its confidence and gave them the following bit of information: "Laurier and loyalty is now the cry of the 'veiled treason' party of 1891. Laurier may be loyal to Laurier, but he is a traitor to Canada." And both papers find willing readers. The newspaper reports of meetings are colored by tho editorial policy of the papers, and re call an experience that I had at Creston, Ia ' twenty years ago. The republican paper began by saying that I had a small crowd, criticised everything I said and concluded by declaring that the audience was relieved when I drew my remarks to a1 close. The democratic paper an nounced that I had. a large audience, In spite of the short notice, praised my speech all the way through and wound up its report with the com forting assurance that though I talked two hours the audience would gladly have listened until morning. The Canadian papers give reports of meetings quite as conflicting. Tho St. John Telegraph, for instance, declares that "Dr. Prigsley ad dressed two big meetings" and made "victory sure in Kent," while the Standard assures its readers that "only seventeen electors turned out to hear Mr. Prigsley" at one of those meetings, that "little enthusiasm was dlsDlayed" And that the voters are "not impressed with the promises made." The predictions vary much aa they do In our own country tho night boforo election. Tho liberals toll me that Laurier will win with votes to spare, while the conservatives seem confident that ho will be boaten. One paper prints a list of "captaius of industry" who have "come out against reciprocity" and anothor paper answers with a list of farmers who have declared for reciprocity and so it goes. I am surprised to find that fear of annexa tion is playing so large a part In tho campaign waged by the conservatives against reciprocity. You would suppose, to read the editorials and tho speeches as reported that there was an active movement oil foot In tho United States to annex Canada, whether or no. They quote from Presi dent Taft's speeches and appeal to tho spirit of loyalty to Great Britain. The following ex tract Is made the subject of a cartoon: " 'I have said that this was a critical time In the solution of the question of reciprocity. It Is critical because unless It Is now decided fa vorably to reciprocity, it is exceedingly probable that no such opportunity will ever again come to the United States. The forces which are at work In England and In Canada to separate her by a Chinese wall from the United .States, and to make her part of an imperial commercial band reaching from England around the world to England again by a system of preferential tariffs will derive an impetus from the rejection of this treaty, and If we would have reciprocity, with all tho advantages that 1 have described, and that I earnestly and sincerely believe will fol low Its adoption, we must take It now, or give it up forever.' From the speech of President Taft at the joint banquet of the Associated Press and the American Newspaper Publishers' As sociation held In New York on April 27th, 1911." They quote from Speaker Clark's speech and from the editorials in i few American papers and charge that reciprocity is but the thin edge of the annexation wedge. It would seem ridi culous were thearguments (?) not so seriously advanced and were not the consequences likely to be so unfortunate. Here are two great na tions side by side with nothing but an unforti fied boundary line between them; for nearly a century peace and friendship have existed be tween them. Now, for partisan purposes, tho conservatives deliberately appeal to prejudice and try to make capital by cultivating a spirit of unfriendliness to the people of the United .States. The indications are -that the effort will fail, and yet, the very effort, like the effort of republicans to prevent tariff reduction in tho United States by declaring that it was in the interest of Great Britain, shows how a' pecuniary interest can blind people to fairness and justice. It will evidently" be some years yet before wo are ready for tiie millenium but let us hope that time will remove prejudice on both sides of the line and convince both people that econo mic questions ought to be considered on their merits and national verdicts rendered upon the real facts and not on statements colored to suit the Interests of the party making them. W. J. BRYAN. WHAT IS IT? In opposing the recall In the governor's con ference, Governor O'Neal of Alabama spoke of "the caprice of the majority,' and added: "When you establish an arbitrary recall of judges you have instituted mob law in this country." We have already established an arbitrary selection of judges. What about "the caprice of the majority" in tho selection of these judges? Have we in that way "instituted mob law?" V 4,' i j; a llMwmmtMtf'ijim tiJ1Lli.