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About The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923 | View Entire Issue (Jan. 31, 1913)
JANUARY 31, 1913
A COLORADO WAR HORSE
Boulder, Colo., Jan. 14. To Tho Editor of
Tho Commoner: Perhaps the enclosed verseB
are too lengthy, perhaps not sufficiently meritor
ious for your invaluable paper, Tho Commoner,
but I would like to see you pay a neat little
tribute to Colonel Montgomery in some form.
In my opinion ho was the brainest, most
courageous man this state has produced. Others
h have risen higher, others excelled in the prac-
ucui manipulation oi auaira, peruaps, oui lor
superb ability in the forum, ho had, as I be
lieve, no peer within our confines. He was at
one time house member, at another, speaker,
and would havo presided over the senate had ho
lived a few days longer. Ho was the man who
could and did on numerous occasions preside
over our state conventions as no other man
could and upon the floor in debate, he outshone
all others. He was. our old War Horse of De
mocracy, and no man ever better deserved the
title. I havo often wished he had been sent
to, the United States senate. Had he been, I
know he would have attained at once the stand
ing of a powerful national figure. He was aged
seventy-eight years, according to the papers, but
seemed much younger. The irony, the sar
casm, the wit, the courteous, yet courageous
' bearing in debate and public assemblies his
I playground and his battlefield all combined to
make him appear to me as a man truly great
and I always had implicit faith in his political
b honesty, for he always seemed to me to be a
great champion of truth, right, and justice.
HENRY A. DRUMM.
BENJAMIN P. MONTGOMERY
Look where he lies; how peacefully he sleeps;
And yet how resolute his cast of features.
E'en in death he holds the impress of that iron
That courage, poise and confidence
That made men hail hira chief.
And, too, how faithfully that classic brow
Reveals the secret of that power
Which more than all things else,'
Gave him unquestioned mastery
.The wondrous thought that lay within
That burning eloquence from those fearless
At times in words as with'ring as a fiery blast
At times in tones of thund'rous warning to the
fcAt times in speech of mild but pungent jest and
E'But always lucid, sparkling as the crystal
waters of the mountain stream
Unerring in its mission as the arrow in its flight;
Convinced his fellows that he well deserved
Commander of their destiny.
The frequent smile that charmed both friend
The flashing eye that pierced the densest
I The sllv'ry tongue that roused and stilled the
hearts and souls of men
All, are gone, and gone forevermore.
But on the gracious walls of memory
A picture hangs, enlivening rare
A picture of the 'forum
Where tho people are assembled
On the grave affairs of state.
And in the very midst stands he,
Of towering form and serious mien,
As sturdy as the giant oak and as the lion bravo,
Commotion's in the very air the crisis is at
He lifts his voice; all eyes are turned, all noises
As if his very boldness stilled 'the strife.
He speaks and speaks at length;
And when he's spoken, all is said;
The right has won the wrong has fled.
O weep, my state, my beloved state, "
O state of the golden west;
For 'neath your skies there was none so wise
Defender, bravest and best.
Where'er the call, a very wall
He stood for you and for me;
Where'er he spoke, the storm clouds broke
Came light and liberty.
With honors rife a useful life
Our children's children will tell
How brave you wrojiglit how brave you
Great soul, a loving farewell.
HENRY A. DRUMM.
Boulder, Colo., January 12, 1913.
and Its Ways
When tho general condition of its peoplo Is
considered, it is marvelous that England has
been able to maintain Its prestlgo as one of
the leading countries of tho world as long as
it has. Tho people aro groaning under their
burdens and It could never havo done so this
long except for tho help obtained from many
England, until lately, is an example of what
we should not do, for out of Its population of
around 40,000,000 people, it is said that nearly
30,000,000 aro always on the verge of starva
tion and 1,000,000 are public paupers.
One of the main causes for this is that more
than half of tho land Is now owned by only
2,500 persons and that tho people have been
forced to tho cities. It is estimated that less
than 23 per cent of the entire population live
in the country and these nearly all on rented
farms. Very few Englishmen have any land at
all or havo any homo of their own. They aro
nearly all tenants and tho maj.orlty of the
workers live in small, badly arranged and venti
lated houses, with no conveniences as com
pared with our homes here.
As a result, the poorer classes have become
almost hopeless of better conditions and the
women in particular have been driven to the
worst possible extremes through necessity
which Is shown everywhere boldly and openly.
Disease is on all sides and the great majority
of the poor soon become broken down wrecks.
Drink is the greatest national curse $750,000,
000, being spent yearly by tho people for that
What has brought this about? The Indif
ference of the majority to political life. They
left the rich and titled to rule them, which they
did to their personal advantage, resulting in
"The good old rule,' the simple plan,
That they should take who havo tho power,
And they should keep who can."
What they did not "take" by force, they -took
through laws that burdened the poor man the
heaviest and he gradually lost his all in one
way or another.
England is a constitutional monarchy but
the king is largely a figurehead now. The real
leader of the nation is the prime minister. Par
liament, consisting of a house of lords and a
house of commons, rules. The trouble has been
that the former has had too much power and
the latter too little. Gradually, this Is chang
ing, and with the change, is coming better laws
for tho workers and poor.
It has been a fearful struggle to survive
no matter how, with many but tho great ma
jority of the English have suffered without
breaking the law and they really imagined their
ways the best until .recently when their eyes
have commenced to open by seeing how other
countries and their own colonies were surpass
To give an example of tho results on the
people themselves out of 34,608 young men
who wanted to enlist in tho army, 16,297
(nearly one-half) were rejected for physical
Millions of the inhabitants have no hope of
getting work, never have enough to eat and no
regular home at night. It is estimated that
1,250,000 people havo .$2,925,000,000; 3,750,
000 have $1,225,000,000 and the others have
only $4,400,000,000 to divide many with noth
ing at all.
The qualities that have made the English
great are their tenacity, optimism, confidence,
honesty of purpose and ability to rule other
nations. What has held them back at home
though is that the majority are too conserva
tive. They are too slow, think too much
of themselves and not enough of tho general
good. They are also Inclined to compro
mise difficulties more than they should.
Hard conditions for many years has much
to do with some of theso faults they have
become callous to the needs and suffering of
others through seeing so much of It. This does
not apply to all though, for many of the noblest
characters in history have been English men and
women. The well-cared for Englishman is one
of the finest specimens of the human race.
Under better conditions in many of the colonies,
the English and their descendants are in the
lead with reform laws and think more of their
neighbors than we do here sometimes.
The English spend more of their time in their
homes and less hours in business than we do.
They boliovo tho workers should have rot and
recroation bo as to bo fit to work hard when
tho time comes. Their annual expenditure for
sports alono is $220,000,000 whilo they give
but $75,000,000 towards helping tho poor.
Under tho present administration, England is
waking up and has alrondy adopted tho trades
dispute act, which provides peaceful picketing
during strikes; an act to provide for tho
feeding of school children; the compensation act,
which provides for the payment of persons in
jured while at work; a full adoption of tho
fair trades resolution, which makes obligatory
tho paymont by government contractors of tho
union rate of wages; an improvement of the
position of tho workora In the government dock
yards; the provision of work for the unem
ployed hereafter; tho old-age pension bill; tho
payment of members of parliament, which re
lieves tho trades unions of tho paymont of
members who represent their Interest In tho
house; tho establishment of labor bureaus
where men and women in search of work may
register and bo supplied with Information as to
work obtainable; tho insuranco against illness
and unemployment to a certain extent.
For the Immediate future, tho labor party's
program contains planks looking to tho further
Improvement of the conditions of labor; a law
making It obligatory on tho government to pro
vide work for those wanting It; tho abolition of
night work as far as posslblo; a land policy
which will place the workers on tho land again
until tho nationalization of tho land Is com
pleted; the nationalization of railways and
mines; and bills for tho improvement of the
housing of tho working peoplo.
What has already been done Is a wonderful
advance and ahead of anything our nation has
yet accomplished. With these laws In force,
England will surely become a better and hap
pier place for Its people to live In and advance
instead of going backward. It Is vital to her
future welfare and she now recognizes the na
tion otherwise will fall before other countries
that aro strong rivals.
Comparisons as to financial conditions show
as follows: Por capita circulation, United
States, $34.59; Great Britain, $19.60. Per
capita bank doposits, United States, $45.23;
Great Britain, $23.81.
Wages aro lower in England than hero but
tho living cost is less. Generally speaking, our
workers hero are somewhat bettor off. This
will not be so hereafter though unless we make
changes too. WILLIAM II. B. HAYWARD.
A HINT PROM NEW JERSEY
Perhaps those who complain bocauso tho
president-elect announces no definite policy will
find enough In tho Now Jersey anti-trust bills to
hold tholr attention temporarily. Tho measures
are seven in number and aro said to have Gov
ernor Wilson's approval, which ' at Trenton
means a great deal. i
The purpose Is to prohibit an''! to punish
monopolies of every description. 'To this end
the proposed laws forbid combinations, secret
or otherwise, to limit production, 'lb stifle com
petition or to fix prices. All stocks must repre
sent money or property. No dead horses and no
anticipated profits shall be capitalized. When
ono issue of stock replaces another tho amount
must be the same. One corporation shall not
buy Into another to establish a monopoly or to
restrain trade. In the case of existing holding
companies tho voting of securities unlawfully
held is prohibited. Mergers aro to be permitted
only on the approval of the utilities commis
sion, and discriminations In prices or otherwise
As stated, seven bills seem to have been
necessary to cover all this ground, but ono of
the seven has a bearing upon all of tho others.
It makes the officers and directors of every cor
poration personally responsible for violations of
the laws. It fixes tho penalty at imprisonment
for not more than three years or a fine of not
more than $1,000. It is an anti-monopoly, an
anti-trust, an anti-robbery proposition with
teeth in it, and the teeth aro sharp and long.
These bills are of Importance, of course, as
foreshadowing the downfall of New Jersey as
the home port of the buccaneers of big business,
but for the instruction of Wall street in the ideas
that soon aro to prevail at Washington they are
even more impressive. New York World.
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