The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, February 14, 1913, Image 1

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The Commoner
VOL. 13, NO. 6
Lincoln, Nebraska, February 14, 1913
Whole Number 630
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The Commoner's Thirteenth Year
Editorial in the Political Outlook (Cincinnati, Ohio) : Thirteen
ims destined to become the lucky number for democracy. Among
Ether pleasing signs, 1913 sees the thirteenth year of The Commoner,
IW J Rrvnn'fi orpnt nn.ner. The Commoner has become a raower
r -. v. tmmm . m.m mm w w r w w - , - ..... - , . -- -, - - -
KJEroughout the land in its thirteen years of existence and is in more
Grays than one the organ of the great party. The Commoner was
me first progressive democratic paper in the country. It set the
Race and paved the way for the new democracy of today.
The Commoner gave Roosevelt the ideas for his progressive
party and has supplied republican leaders with ideas. In doing this
it made the old-line democracy think and won it over to progres
siveism. W. J. Bryan deserves more praise than we can give him for
his fearless and eloquent work. Let it continue. May The Com
moner continue to blaze the way until the democracy is entirely out
of the wilderness and the republican party is no more.
The Political Outlook congratulates The Commoner.
Creasy on Currency
Hon. W. T. Creasy, head of the Pennsylvania
tato grange, presented tho following plan to
JlTe currency committee:
In answer to your invitation to appear before
ypur committee to present some of our ideas
M to needed changes in our hanking and cur-
rtncy iawB, 1 ao so, representing tne organizea
farmers of our state.
The grange in Pennsylvania numbers about
r7,pT000 members. At soveral of the late meet
ings, tho following resolution was unanimously
I'We are opposed to the Aldrich contral bank
heme, or any other plan that looks toward tho
Slicing of tho control of our monetary system
fjpm the federal government."
ffhe national grange has passed similar resolu-
ns and I believe the farmers of this country
ee with these resolutions whether they are
imbers of the grange, or outside of it.
There are three things that ought to be in
cluded in any reform of the currency.
1. An Intro-convertible bond; that Is govern
ment bonds ought to be made tho basis of cur-
ncy issue when in the hands of individuals,
well as when in the hands of banks. Any
ftplder of a government bond ought to be able, .
after giving a reasonable notice, to draw the
face value of the bond in currency, the interest
o"h the bond to be suspended while the loan
Continues. This would induce business men to
keep a part of the reserve in bonds, and thus
Snake them independent of banks in time of
stress, and it would at the same time relieve
fvthe strain upon banks. It is the one form of
,:"'' ."elasticity that is advantageous and free from
; t( ,aanger. mere may ue no way or keeping the
2$ big financier from buying government bonds,
pi" i luiiiK mat me uemanu ana supply win
regulate that. The ordinary business man who
wants tho bond for use in emergency could
afford to pay more for it than tho big financier
The secosd thing to be considered is the cen
tral bank feature; that ought to be avoided.
Unless I am mistaken in my observations, big
financiers are much more anxious to increase
their control over the currency than they are
to secure elasticity.
I would suggest the following plan for meet
Ing their demands: Let tho United States b"b
divided up Into districts I do not care how
largo or small these may be. Each state might
be a district, or several of tho smaller states
might be grouped together. Let the bank form
associations, with power to bind all tho banks
belonging to the association; let the associations
borrow of the government, at such rates of in
terest as would tend to restrict the borrowing to
a limited time, although I would bo very liberal
in the terms. The money loaned by tho govern
ment to tho association could bo loaned by the
association to the banks belonging to it. The
government need not require any security in
loaning to tho association, because tho associa
tion would have back of it the assets of all the'
banks in the district, but the association ought
to require security of tho banks borrowing tho
money loaned by the government to the associa
tion, and by the association to the banks ought
not to bo loaned by the banks at a higher rate of
interest than that fixed in tho law it might ho
tho legal rate, or it might bo arbitrarily fixed,
for instance, at not moro than twice the rate
charged by tbe government. Of course, there
would be a maximum fixed boyond which the
association could not borrow, and likewise a
maximum beyond which a bank could not bor
row of tho association. This maximum would
bo a percentage of tho capital and surplus. This
plan would compel all tho districts to deal
directly with tho government, and therefore de-
centralize tho system, rather than centralize it.
It would answer every possible need of an
elastic currency, but It does not increaso tho
power of the banks to issue money or to con
trol it.
Tho third point to bo considered is the asset
currency. What the big banks really want Is a
central bank with asset currency. A democratic
plan must, of course, avoid an asset currency.
The above plan as outlined will give all tho cur
rency necessary. I would not bo in favor of
attempting to withdraw tho privileges which tho
national banks now have, but I would oppose any
increase in those privileges.
I believe the national banking law should be
amended so as to admit banks to loan on real
estate. The percentage, however, ought to be
limited so that they will not have too much of
their money tied up in slow assets. It might bo
arranged that coupon interest bearing bonds
could be issued on mortgages held on farm
property. In this way tho banks could realize
on theso assets.
The above plan covers the case as I see it.
First the intro-convertiblo bond, which gives a
certain amount of elasticity to the currency
without any evils or dangers. Second, a plan
by which the government will loan money to
associations, and by which tho associations can
loan money to individual banks. Third, care to
avoid the asset currency, or anything that ex
tends the privileges of the banka.
The Kansas legislature honored itself by the
election to tho United States senate of William
H. Thompson. Judge Thompson has a keen
appreciation of tho responsibility of public
office and he will render the party and the coun
try great service as a senator from tho demo
cratic state of Kansas. '
The I
ncome lax
Tho incomo tax amendment to tho federal
constitution has been ratified by tho nocossary
number of states and Is now a part of tho con
stitution. Congress can, at loaat, after an
eighteen years' struggle, levy and colloct a tax
on individual Incomes. Tho dollar Is no longer
above tho man. Now lot congress proceed with
tho preparation of an incomo tax measure Such
a law will make it possible to materially reduco
the tariff schedules, Uiub transferring a part of
tho weight of taxation from tho overburdened
poor to tho undorburdened rich.
Some have suggested that tho individual in
come tax bo substituted for the corporation tax,
but tho suggestion comes from tho protected in
terests which have made the tariff laws in their
own interests for a generation and are seeking
some excuse for maintaining present rates. Tho
democratic congress should reject such a propo
sition and give the benefits of reduction to tho
patient masses who have for so long borne tho
injustico of excessivo taxation, collected on con
sumption. Tho day of relief is at hand.
Governor Ralston, Indiana's now governor,
starts in well. He insists upon carrying out
the pledges of the platform "not to carry out
tho pledges of the platform would," ho declares,
"be a betrayal of tho peoples' confidence." Ilo
recommends an efficient primary law, a public
utilities law, an Inheritance tax, a law against
the sale of watered stock and a workman's com
pensation act. It is a good beginning. Indiana
Is a little behind some of her sister states but
it looks liko Governor Ralston Intended to bring
her up to tho lino.
President-elect Wilson has announced tho
selection of Joseph Patrick Tumulty as private
secretary to the president. It is an excellent
appointment. Mr. Tumulty is his present secre
tary and has won the promotion by the industry,
ability and fidelity which he has displayed in
this position. He is a progressive of tho pro
gressives and has grown In popularity as his
acquaintance has increased.
Sol. W. Johnson, Iowa: While in
Perry yesterday I made the statement
that Tho Commoner could bo secured
(in clubs of five) for COc. I immediately
had $3.00 from five new subscribers
without getting out of my chair. I also
includo with this remittance the amount
for my own renewal. I believe had I
time I could get thousands of subscribers
and nearly everyone thinks that during
the great change which will take place
In the near future that they would like
to have the leading democratic views of
legislation to compare with the republi
can views.