The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, March 01, 1914, Page 7, Image 7

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The Commoner
MARCH,' 1914
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or Increase the price of merchandise of any com
modity. "Third. To prevent competition in manufac
turing, making, transporting, selling, or pur
chasing of merchandise, produce, or any com
modity. "Fourth. To make any agreement, enter into
any arrangement, or arrive at any understand
ing by which they, directly or indirectly, under
take to prevent a free and unrestricted com
petition among themselves or among any pur
chasers or consumers in the sale, production, or
transportation of any product, article or com
modity. It has been strenuously contended by .somo
in opposition to these provisions that they are
already included within the meaning of the
Sherman act. They undoubtedly are, and have
been, enforced insofar as thev have been used
as evidences against unlawful combinations in
dissolution suits, but there is room for grave
doubt as to whether or not the doing of any one
of these particular things would, within itself,
be indictable and punishable under the pro
visions of that act. Therefore, there- have been
hundreds of violations of the Sherman law by
individuals, who, on account of tho broad and
sweeping terms of the law, had no idea' -when
they did the inhibited thing, that they were
violating tho law. It is a well known principle
of criminal law that indictments must be specific
in terms and charge definite and particular of
fenses. In justice to tho public and to those
who might otherwise violate the law innocently,
it is wise for criminal statutes to specify as far
as possible the particular practices, transactions
and acts prohibited.
The purpose of section 4 is to make guilt
personal, and it provides that whenever a cor
poration shall be guilty of violating any of tho
provisions of the ,Sherman act the offense shall
be also that of the individual directors-,. officers,
and agents of such corporations authorizing,
ovdering, or doing any such prohibited act, and
provides proper punishment therefor:.
Section 5 provider that nothing contained in
tho bill shall bo taken or held to limit or in any
wax curtail the .meajtfng and effect of -the pro
visions of the Sherman act, - ' ..-.i .
Jt is tho purpose of the committee to- deal
with- holding companies, iand the committee-;is
now considering that: subject.
The president has recommended the creation
of an interstate trade commission. The bill how
receiving consideration was prepared by the -subcommittee
and was introduced in the house
and senate.
f - j. . -
Mr. Bryan first showed his intense antagon
ism toward .Roger Sullivan of Illinois at the na
tional democratic convention which nominated
Pa.rker. There were .two delegations' frpm 3ht
cago, one of' which was headed by Sullivan.
Bryan very stubbornly resisted Sullivan's claim
of recognition, and while Bryan exercised great
influence in that body, yet he could not keep
Sullivan out. , ,,
Now Sullivan is, a candidate for the United
States senate. , ,
Bryan is against him, just as lie. would be
against Ryan or.' Murphy, or any one of their
class. '
The election pf Sullivan to the senate would
not help Wilson's administration, and it would
add nothing to ttie strength, or respectability of
that body. , ,,
It is not surprising that Mr. Bryan should
indicate his opposition to Sullivan, and, indeed
it would-not be surprising to pee Mr. Bryan' take
an active part in the campaign, for men of Sulli
van's class are men Bryan has been fighting with
all the strength at his command throughout all
the years since 1&96, when he was first nom
inated, for president He has fought them and
they have fought .him. His most conspicuous
triumph over them, however, was at the Balti
more convention, when he challenged and put to
rout tho Murphy crowd and made it possible
for Wilson to be nominated on a real, democratic
platform. ,
Machine bosses are not wanted in washing
ton, especially as democrats. Nashville Tennes-
Physical Valuation of Railroads
In addressing the house of representatives on
the subject of physical valuation of railroads,
Congressman W. A. Cullop said:
"The object of this measure Is to ascertain tho
physical valuation of tho railroads for tho pur-,
poso of preventing impositions on tho public, in
the sale of capital stock, bonds, and tho fixing
of transportation charges.
'There can bo no question that thero is a de
mand for such legislation. Railroad rates aro
today fixed on a basis which is absolutely un
j ist to tho producers, shippers and ultimata con
sumers of tho country. Transportation charges
are based on three items. First, to pay operat
ing and improvement expenses: second, to pay
interest on the bonded indebtedness, and, third,
to pay a reasonable dividond on the capital
stock. The first constitutes a just and proper
charge. Tho second and third if both aro em
ployed, as is almost universally the case con
stitutes a double charge, because tho amount of
the capitalization always covers the amount of
the bonded indebtedness.
"The money raised by tho bonds either went
into the roads pr into the pockets of the promot
ers as a rake-off and is, therefore, covered by
the capital stock, and to levy tolls sufficient to
pay both interest on the bonds and a dividend
on the capital stock requires the shipping public
to pay twice for one and tho same thing; and in
the end falls upon the ultimate consumers who
in the last analysis pay the whole thing.
"It is an unquestioned fact that tho railroads
as a rule are over-capitalized, that is to say, the
amount represented by the capital stock is
largely in excess of the actual amount invested
in the roads, and to fix transportation charges so
as to pay a dividend on this excess, is unjust to
the public. This watered stock does not repre
sent value invested, or the expenditure of money,
and to require charges for transportation which
will earn income to pay dividends on it Is en
abling tho owners to collect something for noth
ing and therefore constitutes an imposition, a
hardship on tho gonoral public.
. "Ono of tho most commendable features of
this legislation is that it will squeeze the wator
out, o. tho stock and bonds of railroads, it will
eliminate tho gambling and speculation feature,
and placo them on a sound financial basts, and
thereby prevent great fluctuations In tho same
Every share of stock and every bond will repre
sent real value. Thoro will bo no Inducement
to over-capitalize, and over-bond, because thero
will bo. no demand for such paper on the
"Rates will bo adjusted to pay earnings on
real value and actual Investment will represent
true valuation. This measure once adopted and
transportation charges fixed upon Us require
ments will glvo a great impetus to our industrial
onerntions, because it will benefit both tho pro
ducer and consumer and will also protect the
bona fido Investor in railroad properties.
"Ills Investment will cam bettor returns and
bin stocks will not suffer from fluctuating mar
kets or bo affected by financial flurries, which
aro now top frequently tho case.
"Tho owner of railroad stocks will not under It
feel required to give ono value for his proporty
to tho tax assessor for taxation and another and
altogether different value to the Interstate com
merco commission for tho fixing of transporta
tion rates, but can give tho samo to both, and
enjoy tho confidence of the-public. It will then
be an aid to Industrial operations of all kinds
and Inspire development of our inexhaustibly
resources, broaden our markets and assist both
tho producer and consumer by a reduction. of
transportation charges'
TheUnited States supreme court fbas decreed
that the pure applies only, to articles
that have been adulterated to an injurious ex
tent. Evidently uppn., the theory.. that.;a ljttle
poison now and. then-is relished by. the,, best, of
1 ' summing' ui'Iresults . 11,; 1.
A list of achievements of the Wilson-administration
ivas issued on February G by the demo
cratic national committee. It is as follows:
Revision of the tariff downward.
Enactment of currency reform.
Elimination of lobby from the halls of con
gress. Perfection and operation of the Income tax
and direct election of senators. Amendments-to
the constitution.
Negotiations of treaties in accord with tho
Bryan peace plan, thirty governments having
signified their intention to accept.
By public appearances at the capltol the presi
dent has emphasized the ending of government
by secret conferences and private arrangement.
Passage of the industrial employees' arbitra
tion act, which prevented a strike of eastern
railway employees.
"Constitution of peace" policy, resulting in
voluntary breaking up of the interlocking direc
torate system.
Deposit by the secretary of the treasury of
$50,000,000 to facilitate the moving of crops.
Farm credit legislation emphasized by the
president, and legislation assured.
Modified sdlf-government conferred on tho
Divorcement of the government from alliance
with New York financial interests in interna
tional affairs.
Co-operative policy of the department of
justice, resulting in voluntary dissolution by big
corporations in accord with provisions of the
anti-trust law.
Policy of "diplomatic postponement" or
"watchful waiting," backed by high moral
grounds, applied to the Mexican and Japanese
questions and approved by public opinion.
Parcel post system developed and extended,
and express rates reduced in consequence.
Change jn the rules of congress, resulting in
the.elimina.Uon of Cannonism. .,
Extension of pure food and meat inspection
acts, with resulting benefits to consumers.
Scientific, method of marketing farm products
with a view, t to the -elimination of waste under
taken by'the department of agriculture.
Armor..plate trust forced by the secretary of
the-navy to reduce-its bids, at a saving to the
government of more than $2,OQQ,000.
Protection of the law given to Indian children
, j , - .. - .t t.ftti'1
and' favoritism abollshed-by ;the cojtfiulsslonep
of Indian affairs. ' ' ' '"
Postoffico department ma'de self-sustaining -
Extension of the special delivery system to ;tha
parcel post. '
Home life of tho farmer made a subject of
special study by tho department of 'agriculture-
Public land policy embracing conservation of
natural resources and utilization at tho same
time adopted by the secretary of the intorlor;
Farm extension measure carrying to the
farmers the benefits of-the scientific study of ex
perts passed. ,
Emphasis given by the president to the presi
dential preference primary plan. . Leglslatlon-ls
believed probable. " '
Better protection for passengers and property
at sea provided by London conference In which
views of delegates sent by the administration
were largely adopted.
Early enactment of the Alaskan railway- bill
opening up Alaska promised.
y Academic, vocational and technical Instruction
for enlisted men in the navy provided by secret
tary of the navy.
Dissolution of the Southern Pacific merger and
surrender of stock held -by Pennsylvania rail
road in its competitor, the Baltimore & Ohio,
accomplished along lines agreeable to the ad
ministration. Prosecutions begun against several large
trusts which have not agreed to a settlement
along peaceful lines. The Public.
William J. Bryan has done his duty as a demo
crat in denouncing the candidacy of Roger C.
Sullivan. There Is not room in the same party
for democrats and men of the Sullivan stripe
This Mr, Bryan shows plainly. Sullivan's nom
ination for United States senator by the demo
cratic party would simply mean that the party
has relinquished all claim to the support of true
democrats, Mr. Bryan classes Sullivan with
Lorinfer.. That is where he belongs. The demo
cratic party of Illinois can not well afford to
nominate any one of the Lorimer class, and even
if it does, the state of Illinois can not well afford
tb& disgrace of again sending one of that kind
to the senate. Mr, Bryan deserves the com
mendation, of democrats. everywhere for. making
clear ..the menace of Sullivanism. The Public.