The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, January 01, 1918, Page 10, Image 10

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The Commoner
Two Reasons
..Extracts from AddroBS of Mr. Bryan at a
mass mooting in Auhuvlllo, N. 0., December 14,
"There aro two arguments In favor of the
Thrift Campaign in tho interests of War-Savings
"Tho by-products of this var ar6 already nu
merous and important. Among them thrco are
especially worthy of consideration In this con
nection. "First, tho lmmodiato offoct of the war has
b'opn to rovyal moro clearly than boforo tho evil
of1 alcoholic jilquors. In such a crisis as that
through whlpli wo aro passing tho nation neods
100 por cont mon, and intoxicating liquor impairs
tho economic valuo of tho citizen as a producer,
and tho military valuo of tho soldier at the bat
tjo front, Tho lessons loarnod from tho war are
Increasing tho prohibition sentiment in this coun
try and qlsowhorb; and it now looks as if the
national prohibition amendment would soon be
submitted and it is qulto certain to bo adopted
wlion it. is submitted.
"Socond, tho voluntary giving that has been
necessary has In it a certain spiritual valuo. The
heart Is enllotod, tho sympathies aro expanded,
and altruism makes headway against selfishness.
AU rpligfous and ethical movements are likely to
bo stimulated bocauso tho giving impetus has
been arousod.
"Third, our pooplo havo never usod tho gov
ernment bond as a savings bank to tho extent
that pooplo In other countries havo. Tho Liberty
Loan has lod millions to invest in government
bonds as a mattor of patriotism and tho invest
ment will continuo as a matter of business. The
gpvornmont bond js tho best security In tho world
and the safest savings bank, There is, nhore
forp, a real economic valuo in tho formation of
tho' habit of ontrustilg the government with sur
plus money. It is a good way to provide with
cor lalnty agahist tho uncertainties of life nnd to
make suro provision1 for old age.
"Tho Thrift and War-Savings Stamps are the
most profitable form of patriotism that the clt
isjon will havo a chance to manifest. It is the
duty of tho citlzon to support the government
along evory lino and In ovory posslblo way. It
i his duty to support tho government by word
and by dood in whatever it may seo fit to under
take, becauso ours Is a pooplo's government, and
it spoaks for tho cltizon.
"Thero aro several ways in which tho citizen
may sorvo tho government, principal among
which aro through military sorvico, through tax
ation, and through loans mado to tho govern
ment throo kinds of burdens which the citizen
may bo callod upon to boar in time of war
"Of theso three, military sorvice is the heavi
est becauso itmay involvo tho sacrifice of life
No pocuniary burden can, therefore, equal the
burdon borno by the soldier.
"Noxt in weight is taxation. It is lighter than
military sorvico, bocauso it is paid out f the
incomo Or, at most, out of the property, while
military service may demand life, which is more
than incomo or property.
"Loans mado to tho government are easier
than taxatlbn. When the government takes
money through taxation, it does not promise to
return it. But when it borrows money, it navs
it back with interest, and Interest at 4 is I
think, more than tho average rato paid bv the
savings banks of tho country.
' "But tho WarrSavings Certificates have three
Advantages over tho Liberty Loan. First, the
Interest is compounded every threo months. Sec
qud, it ban' bo subscribe.! in small amounts to
suit the ability, of the subscriber and at Sicu
times as may suit his convenience. Third tho
moaoy 'loaned 'can bo collected at any time on
ton days' notice, so that it can never fall below
par Mr ombarras the holder. And in addition
iL ,08? advttntaos t las a valuo which can
hardly bo ovor-ostimated in that it teaches thrift
Qcpnomy, and saving. It is no exaggeration to
say that tho lpsson which tho boys and girls will'
loam in. the purchase of Thrift Stamps and War
Savings Stamps will bo worth far moro to thorn
than the monoy invested, and they will got their
nipney,back besides, and interest on it It is
mprothan eating .your cake and keeping it with.
montWnUn8 tU aUl Umt U 1S glVlnS tUe g'
"MiliUuy suwlco, taxes, and loans these
three and the easiest of these Is loans."
From Tho Lowlston, Me., Journal, Dec. 7,
Col. Bryan's address on live-wiro lines of uni
versal democracy drew a large and enthusiastic
audience to Lowiston city hall last evening. Col.
Bryan is tho most entertaining talker the writer
has ever heard; but whatever he was when he
was enfranchised as the Boy Orator of the Platte,
Col. Bryan is not the great orator of America
today and that, jperhaps, for want of occasion.
Arid for that matter, one knows not whether we
have In the United States an orator in the sense
embodied in Patrick Henry, Wendell Phillips or
Ward Beecher and the group of great anti
slavery orators of "The Fifties." All depends,
however, on definitions. Perhaps, the most dra
matic orators ' of this period are women like
Mrs. Livingston, because fhe prophetess sees the
coming of tho Lord in politics and in society
moro vividly than the prophet. Roosevelt is
not a great orator but he is our pre-eminent
statesman and seer.
Oratory is either declamation nor talk. Ora
tory' is tho product of periods of intense moral
and social agitation. Not all great men and
women who have deep emotions and serious con
sciences and great minds are orators. Other
equipment is essential. No great orator is pos
sible without intense convictionb and forceful
mentality plus fertility of imagination, humor
and dramatic lire. The orator is an artist. He
must portray aLd picture the crisis. He must
draw on an affluent imagination a rich vo- '
cabulary is not enough. Words made flesh are
tho organic requirement of oratory.
It is easily possible that under the stress of
emergency and while the fires of truth and un
tarnished idealism were flaming on the altars of
his mind, that the Boy Orator of the Platte was
both orator and talker, but in last evening's ad
dress he drew not on potentials of oratory but
on actualities of conviction. "Sixteen to one"
never has and never will elicit a great Phillipic.
Not since Wendell Phillips lectured in Lewiston
50 years ago on "The Lost Arts," have we heard
so fascinating a talker as the late Boy Orator of
the Platte: .
Why is it that ex-Congressman McGillicuddy,
for example, draws a full house in the city of
his birth? Why did the late Senator Frye crowd
tho benches whenever he talked to his neighbors?
Not merely for the" message, worthy though that
average to bo, but because action enriched lan
guage. When a great dramatist takes- a leading
part in a dialogue, we average to be little inter
ested. , Oratory req'uirds wholesome emotion,
identification of the man with the message. And
such identification is impressive only when the
man and the message are a unit organic. This
is why Patrick Henry's cry for liberty put a uni
versal phase on American poljtics, this is why
Ward Beecher made England ashamed of her
American policy in 1861-4, this is why Boston's
Fanueil Hall is a citadel of liberty not unlike In
dependence Hall in Philadelphia. Whether the
disappearance of great orators is due to a dimin
ished demand, and whether diminished demand
is due to decline of moral and spiritual forces, '
is anothe matter on which we would not dog
matize. Some. say the newspaper has elimin
ated the demand for orators. Not so! The
theatre can not he destroyed by the movies
drama and poetry will revive The new inter
nationalism and the world's bettering democ
racy will evoke a demand such as elicited that
group of immortals who followed John Brown
as well as Abraham Lincoln.
While Bryan is delicately dramatic and witty
he is neither philosophical nor profound. And
were he metaphysical like Emerson who put a
Lewiston, audience to sleep in the '50's, Bryan
would be neither an entertaining talker nor a
popular force. It is Bryan's fine human Equality
as it was the fine human quality of Lincoln that
gives him his place in American politics. Bryan
preserves no commonplaces on ice. He is a bet
ter democrat than Jefferson because Jefferson
was a theoretical, not an intuitive ddmocrat
Jefferson was a natural aristocrat, who got dem
ocracy into his system y the way of France not
by the way of Monticello. His Virginia castle,
was the home of tf feudal lord converted to the
oretical equality of men and women. Jefferson
as a slaveholder did great stunts against mak
ing good the fine sentiments which dominated
his emotions hut failed to possess his intellect
So the sideboards of many American politicians
are in conflict with the water wagon while on
equal suffrage camouflage promotes atired .feel
ing at the fence. J'yJ
A striking element of the situation at city' hall
last evening, accordingly, was Col. Bryan's ap
pearance as a democrat, taking issue with Tam
many democracy and republicanism such as to
day struggle to re-elect Curley as mayor of Bos
ton and such as combined to defeat reflection
of Mayor Mitchel, the best democrat who ever
ruled our great commercial capital. The conflict
betwoen sections of American parties is now as
acute as it was when Lincoln was elected to bo
president. President Wilson, like Jefferson, is
an ardent democrat, but not of the Bryan school.
The present incumbent of the white house is a
natural aristocrat, meaning thereby no dis
respect because His Excellency is an intellectual
and cultural force and we are inclined to be
lieve the greatest in. these two respects than any
previous president. What Wilson laclcs is what
Lincoln did not lack and what Roosevelt and
Bryan do not lack a fellow-feeling that makes
us wondrous intimate. Two such meri as Wil
son and Bryan can hardly pull together. The
commoner and statesman have different points
of view. One can not sit down with Wilson and
get at him as he can sit down with Bryan and
commjuno, heart to heart. There was no more
sympathy between Lincoln, the commoner, and
Stanton, the autocrat, that between the present
incumbent of the White house and his first
chosen secretary of state. However, the conflict
between Bryan democracy and Wilson democracy
is in a measure arrested by the present war. So
the .pressure of civil war made it possible 'for
Lincoln to tolerate the otherwise impossible
Stanton and McClellan and the mere politician,
Seward, behind whom, it will be recalled, was
Tammany Republican Thurlow Weed.
It is one of the fine effects of the supreme
issue of the world democracy that Col. Bryan
now drops pacifism and pulls heajtily with the
American people to put on the map a democracy
more fit for the world. While Cot, Bryan is in
conflict with political reaction in both old par
ties as was Lincoln, Bryan yields not to the alien
temptation to which the Copperheads surrend
ered in 1'86 It As in war democrats helped Lin
coln beyond measure, so Bryan and many other
devotees of peace, finding war inevitable, join
hands as heartily to defend the nation as did the '
great majority of northern democrats who voted,
for the Missouri Compromise and for Buchanan,
In standing for equal suffrage, prohibition and
the popular initiative and, referendum, Bryan,
stanfs for a finer future as well as for a better
present, and every friend of good government is
with him, overlooking his silver dollar heresy
and not ignoring the fact that economic events
have recently put' Bryan's consecrated ratio of
"16 to 1" on the map of relative value, while
silver happily is yet a commodity responsive to
the law of supply and demand under a single
standard of gold. Fortunately, we have kept
the old yardstick in spite of profiteering kings
of worsted and cotton.
It has taken the serious consequence of two
years' conventional, inconsequential and conver
sational "preparedness" to convert Wilson to
demand rate-regulation law for want of which
Prussianism in Europe is yet bumptious because
promoted by profiteering in America. Colt Bry
an, Secretary of Navy Daniels and other statesmen-were
more prophetic than Wilson and saw
the point long ago. " . - - .
One of the most impressive features qf Bryan's
speech was his analysis of the unearned, incre
ment and of meritorious millionaVism. Con
curring that a man may be worth- well-earned
$500,000,000, the colonel laid the ghost' of
profiteering intimating that such men as Lin
coln are a bargain at $500,000,000 and that the
difference between the man who deserves to be
millionaire and the prevailing multi-millionaire
is embodied largely in spiritual justice. We tells
us that such spiritual millionaires as' Lincoln
have no time to collect $500,000,006 of the peo
ple though they may have contributed more than
that- to public welfare, while the 'man who
has $500,000,000 of monoy in his keepings
necessarily, devoted -himself to collecting the
money. Col. Bryan's putting of social value is
telling. A man has the right to that proportion
of the world's wealth which he putsFint6 "ho
common store, but all social science challenges
would make manhood the serf of nrohtfrhfcUiirt
profiteered assets more sacred than asli'd
by decent industry and right use of fcSSaSS
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