The commoner. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-1923, January 01, 1921, Page 2, Image 2

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The Commoner
VOL.?!, $0.1
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My conference with Prosldont-olect Harding
confirmed tho opinion that I formed during the
campaign, namely, that he would stand for inter
national cooperation in tho interest of World
Poaco. That was pledged in tho Republican
platform and tho pledge was renewed by Mr.
Harding both during tho campaign and after tho
election. Tho detUls are immaterial. An over
whelming majo itj of the people want some
form of cooperation. The majority against the
Democratic plan and in favor of the Republican
plan was unprecedented if tho election can be
regarded as a referendum on tho that issuo but
it must not bo forgotton that tho Republican
convention doclarod for an Association of Na
tions. Tho two parties are, therefore, united
in' purpose though separated in plan. Thb
coorcion of events will bring them together but,
to avoid auy future deadlock, congress should
submit somo such amendment as that introduced
by Congressman Ayors fo Kansas permitting a
majority of tho Senate to ratify a treaty.
But' Prosldont-olect Harding wttf havo many
problems to solvo and I do not hesitate to ex
press the belief that ho will approach them hon
estly, conscientiously, and with slngloness of
purpose. He is singularly free from tho obliga
tions that sometimes hamper a president. His
nomination came unexpectedly as tho result of a
combination of circumstances that no one could
forsee and his majority at the polls waH so largo
that no one person or group can claim special
credit for it. Ho feels, as any sincere man must,
the grave responsibilities imposed upon him and
ho will try to moot the expectations of the
' Ho will not bo able to please everybody; he
may not please anybody all of the time, but ho
is entitled to tho confidence of all and to such
en.couragomont as each can give. He occupies the
highest position in tho world and holds it as tho
express choice of more human beings than ever
before entrusted governmental authority to
mortal man. Tho' Commoner will be happy to
support him as far as it can: it will differ with
him with regret if it becomes necessary to dif
fer from him on any subject. Here's hoping
that' his administration will prove a blessing to
the nation and tho world and thus give him a
high Place in history. W. J. BRYAN.
Senator Ashurst of Arizona has introduced a
very important constitutional amendment which
"will be found on another page, together with his
remarks introducing it and a report on a similar
resolution in 1914,
Tho Asliurst amendment proposes that the
presidential term shall begin on tho third Mon
day in January and that congress shall meet in
regular session on the first Monday in January
each year. The proposed amendment shortens
.by about six weeks the interim between tho time
when the president is elected and the date of in
auguration, and it shortens by eleven months tho
period between the election of a congress and the
convening of the ftrst regular session. It also
does away with the after the election session
that we now have and gives the voters an op
portunity tr sit in judgment on the completed
work of the congressmen who are candidates for
N reelection.
The amendment is badly needed: it is to be
hoped that it will be submitted at once 30 that
the state legislatures that meet this winter can
ratify now. Such an amendment will be adopted
"eventually why not now?"
President-elect Harding has correctly sensed
the demand of the people for rigid economy in
government -expenditures by his action in ' re
questing the abandonment of tho plans for an
inaugural colebration and reducing the expenses
of the inaugural ceremonies. Congress was dis
posed to grant a liberal appropriation, but Sena
tor Harding's action will set a good example and
act as a warning to our representatives that the
appropriation of public money must now be
limited to actual necessities of tho government
The groat producing classes of tho country, who
must pay their taxes with 40 cent corn and 10
cent pork, will heartily indorse President-elect
Harding's action.
December 29th, 1920.
Mr. Bryan N. Railsback,
Howard Motors Co.,
Kansas City, Mo.
My dear Mr, Railsback:
Answering your inquiry, I beg to say that
Christian men MUST take an interest in politics.
In theory our government derives its just pow
ers from tho consent of the governed but in
practice it represents the consent only of 'those
who take part in its control. It is only as good
as thoy are.
Plato said .that 12 tho good citizens do not take
an interest in the government they are punished
by having to live under tho rule of worse people
than themselves. But are there any worse citi
zens than those who donot feel interested in
their own government? Is the man who tries to
vote twice any more dangerous than the man who
is not interested enough to vote once?
The ballot brings responsibility as well as
privilege. We are responsible for the wrong wo
permit as well as what we actually advocate. The
Christian must live his religion in politics and in
business as well as at home. Yours truly,
No Democrat should delude himself with the
idea that tho Democratic party can make any
headway in this day and age by appealing for
support with mere promises of adherence to its
"historic" principles.
The "historic" principles of the party, are,
of course, all right, even though they are, un
fortunately, not understood by the people except
in a vague way, and even though 'the average
politician, if driven into a corner, would be
hard-pressed to define them. They sound good
in platforms and aro always tenderly referred
to by platform writers, but, of themselves, they
mean nothing.
What the public is interested in is the cor
rect application of these "well known" prin
ciples. This can only be secured when they .are
embodied in some concrete, definite measures
that show HOW and WHERE the party stands,
and just WHAT it proposes to do.
The Democratic party can mako no progress
by adopting and reiterating platforms that mean
nothing. They spell defeat in this day of pro
gressiveism and independent action. Success
lies in the direction of being able to give tho
people what they want, and future party plaK
forms must correctly interpret and voice the
needs, aspirations and desires of the American
people. - ..
No man or woman should aspire to be a can
didate for public office unless they have some
definite program to put into action that .will
be of ben fit to the public-.
If you want to understand the gross injustice
of the stock dividend decision read the follow
ing: .
"McKeesport, Pa., Dec. 21. The McKeesport
TinpUte Co. has declared a stock dividend of $7,
000,000. President E. R. Crawford issued this
announcement: This company has today in
creased its capital stock from $3,000,000 to $10
000,000 making a stock dividend of $7,000,000
This has been done to take care of extensions
and improvements made to the plant and prop
erty covering the last 10 years and which had
not previously been represented by capital stock.
Stock is to be issued to shareholders of record
Dec. 23, 1920. The McKeesport Tinplate plant
is the largest in the world, McKeesport busi
ness men started it and still own about all the
Will congress put these excess profits corpora,
tions on a par with others or will it confess itq
partiality to big business? tS
m?EZ Joh?SOIof California h$s announced
his intention of urging a federal primary law He
is to be commended for his eff6rts to further
extend the benefits of the primary system to tho
selection of presidential candidates for all
Nearly a million votes were cast for Debs tho
socialist candidate for president, who wag" in
jail during the campaign and is still there
Which causes us to-remark how, under the cir
cumstances, he could be said to'We been run
ning for tho. office. " en lln
While We Wait
Those responsible for the fact that we are not
yet taking a part in the call it league or asso
ciation of nations for the promotion o world
peace will find little consolation in reviewing
what id happening while we wait.
The normal status of Europe can not be re
stored until wo take part. Plans for tho future
can not be made until our voice is heard. WHILE
WE WAIT armaments are increasing !n Europe,
Asia and the United States each continent
blaming the other. Nono o the great nations
are willing to commence reducing alone, or even,
to stand still. Tho military and naval load in
creases WHILE WE WAIT.
Democracy is losing ground and monarchy ia
regaining its strength WHILE WE WAIT,
Greece has recalled her king. Hungary is slip
ping back toward a throne and a Kaiser party in
Germany is clamoring for the emporer's return
Every day's delay makes it harder for ns to
do our part in putting an end to war. Possibly
conditions will be so bad by March 4 that our na
tion will be coerced-into IMMEDIATE action in
order to make amends for inexcusable delay.
W. J. BRYAN. .
(Extract from address of William" Jennings
Bryan before. the Miami Real Estate Board, De
cember, 1920.) ' ' "
The park is a Democratic institution; it is i
people's play ground. It is economical, too; , for. it
costs less for many to use a park .than for each
one to have a park -of hi3 own. The smill park
Js.better than a large park because many sections
can "be supplied with, small parks for what one
large park would cost. For h. number of. years I
have, been trying to Interest, the several states In
plan, which wtfl secure to growing citlep all ttie
park space needed without expense to the coWr
munity. It is as follows; Whepever acre prop
erty is platted and divided int.o lots, the owner
should be required to dedicate a certain percent
age of it to the public for parks as' he ndW gives
a certain part for streets. The Increase in value
that comes to the owner of property adjacent to
a growing city is largely an unearned: increment
and thore is no injustice in appropriating for a
public purpose a part of the value that the city
cireates. The city might without injustice collect
a part of the increase in the form of a tax, as a
part of the increase in the value Of rdal estate
is now taken by the income tax levied by the
Federal government, but tin dedicatitin of a
part-to park's, would so increase the value of the
remainder that tho net loss to the ownei would
be 'little or nothing.
Some far seeing land owners voluntarily set
apart a portion for parks and this practice should
be encouraged, but in this case th,e claims of the
public rest upon such' a substantial basis that it
should not be left entirely to volition; 'it ought
to be required fcy law.
The passage of the Borah resolution shouJd,
not prevent the passage of the resolution offered
by Senator Walsh of Montana authorizing the
President to send a representative to discuss
duBartma.ment with th0 Allies- Both resolutions
should be adopted. We can not have too much
in the direction of disarmament or act too
At the last election the voters of Nebraska, by
a referendum, rejected a law passed by the leg
islature which proposed lo restore the conven
tion system of nomination of nine-tenths of tho
state officers. The adverse vote was four to one.
In his annual message the- governor said that
because a majority of those voting at the elec
tion did not express an opinion on the primary,
he regards it as the wish of the people that the
convention system be employed; Tis queer
what reasons a man can conjure up f6r doinff
what he wants to do. s
in the last issue of his paper Mr. Bryan sava
he will formulate a party legislative program
representing as nearly as possible th desires 5
people and will then call on progressive Demo
cratto rally to its support. Inasmuch as Mr
sac assr- "':&&&
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