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About The Wageworker. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1904-???? | View Entire Issue (Feb. 27, 1909)
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.LINCOLN, NEBRASKA, FEBRUARY 27, 1909
SUBMIT THE CHARTER TO THE VOTERS OF LINCOLN
If the proposed city charter is a good one, the people of Lin
coln will ratify it.
If the proposed city charter is a bad one, the people of Lin
coln should be given an opportunity to reject it.
In any event the people of Lincoln should be given an oppor
tunity to pass judgment upon the proposed charter.
This can only be done by submitting the charter to a referen
dum vote. And the men who object to thus submitting the charter
to a referendum vote will bear watching.
If it is a good thing to provide for a referendum vote on such
a simple matter as an ordinance, how much more is it a good thing
to submit to a referendum the matter of a charter that has to do
with an entire and radical change in the plan of municipal gov
ernment. The claim that the present charter has already been passed up
on is utterly and unqualifiedly false. A little history concerning
this matter of changing to the commission plan of government may
not be amiss at this time.
Jjast summer the attention of many people was called to what
is known as the "Des Moines plan," which is a commission plan
of city government. The idea met with favor, and it was suggested
that in order to get at the sentiment of the people the matter be
voted on at the general election. Now mind you, the matter was not
legally submitted, nor was it voted on as by law directed. No notice
of such election was ever advertised or posted, the question was
not printed upon any legal ballot, and no legal return was ever
made. Under the guise of "just an attempt to get at public senti
ment," City Clerk Pratt had some tickets printed and the election
judges or some of them were asked to hand out these tickets
and keep a separate return on them. Not all of the precincts were
supplied with these tickets, and in some of the precincts that were
supplied the judges neglected to hand them out. In other precincts
many voters were not informed that such a ballot was being taken,
and thus, in view of the failure to legally submit and advertise the
question, many voters were practically debarred from expressing
No one doubts, after studying all the facts, that the commis
sion plan would have been carried jhad it been legally submitted
and voted upon. But it is not true tftat the proposed charter would
have carried by a vote equal to that ast in favor of the commission
plan last fall. The people who expressed their opinion last fall ex
pressed the opinion that they would like to try the commission
plan, but in so doing they did not bind themselves to accept any
old' kind of a charter that might be framed up.
The Wageworker favors the commission plan of government of
municipalities. But first of all it favors allowing the people to say
what kind of a commission they prefer. It opposes allowing a few
idealists to frame up a charter and foist it upon 8,000 voters without
their consent. It favors a commission plan that will divide re
sponsibility among men elected to bear that responsibility, pay
them a reasonable wage for their work and then compel them to at
tend to the work. It opposes a plan that will make a bunch of fig
ureheads and open an unlimited field for the placing of favorites in
soft berths. It opposes a plan that' disfranchises a large number
of honest, hard-working and home-building citizens in order to give
more force and effect to the votes of men who insist that the pos
session of wealth, and treasurers and legal lore marks the possessors
as the logical keepers of the welfare; of the workers and toilers.
The Wageworker is opposed to the May election date for more
reasons than one. First, it disfranchises nearly a thousand voters
whose means of livlihood compel them to leave the city before the
date set for election. It is true that the men who are to be thus
disfranchised are only "ignorant Russians," but they are also hon
est, hard-working, frugal citizens who are building homes, who are
honest and quick to pay their obligations, and who are paying taxes
for the support of municipal institutions. By reason of the nature
of their work they bring thousands of dollars to Lincoln every year,
and this money goes into the legitimate channels of Lincoln trade.
The Wageworker holds that such citizens are entitled to as much
consideration as the drones of society who live on the unearned in
crement. Secondly, The Wageworker opposes the May election
date for the reason that it is unfair and unwise to thrust sudden
responsibility upon the newly elected excise board. ' With an April
election date the excise board has several weeks in which to con
sider and pass upon excise matters. With the May date the newly
elected board has but a day or two in which to meet this heavy re
But above all, The Wageworker believes in home rule. It fa
vors allowing every municipality to run its own affairs as may best
suit its citizens, subject only to the. general laws that must bear alike
upon all citizens of the state. The people of Lincoln, not the legis
lators of Nebraska, have the right to decide what municipal rules
shall govern them. This right the people of Lincoln will not have
if the plans of a few self-constituted guardians of the people sue-'
The present legislature can not foist a charter upon the people
of Lincoln without violating the platform pledges of the legislative
majority. The battle cry of that majority was "let the people rule."
One of its platform pledges was the initiative and referendum. If
the people of Lincoln are to rule Lincoln they must be given a
chance to say whether or not they approve of the charter. If 'the
platform pledge is to be carried out the charter must be referred
back to the people.
If the proposed city charter is a good one, the people of Lin
coln will ratify it.
If the proposed city charter is a bad one, the people of Lin
coln should be given an opportunity to reject it. .
Let the people rule !
Among the Live Workers
Here, There and Elsewhere
The annual ball of the Brotherhood
ot Locomotive Engineers, Division
No. 98. was seriously interferred with
by King Boreas. Monday evening was
. wet and rainy aud windy, making it
disagreeable to go outside of the
doors or one's own home, and for
this reason the attendance at the ball
was not nearly so large as was to
have been expected from the number
or tickets sold. But despite the un
toward weather conditions there was
a goodly attendance. Nearly one hun
dred couples took part in the grand
march, and fully three hundred spec
tators sat in the balcony and enjoyed
listening to the excellent music ani
watching the dancers.
The Auditorium was tastefully dec
orated with patriotic colors, and rail
way signal lights of red, white and
blue were strung lavishly about. From
the stage a huge locomotive head
light shone out upon the dancers.
The grand march was led by the
chairman of the ball committee, Mr.
J. F. Duffy, and his daughter, Miss
Anna. From its close until midnight
the enjoyment was shared in by ths
hundreds present. The committees
having the ball in charge were as
Ball committee J. F. Duffy, chair
man. W. T. Leahy, Fred Farquar, C.
Hook and D. Helming.
Floor commit te J. E. Johnson and
Reception committee J. S. McCoy
and wife, John Gleason and wife, A.
L Cl!yberg and wife, Edward Ralf-
fi rnrer and wife, and A. J. Bignell
During the evening refreshments of
coffee, sandwiches and punch were
served, and this feature was by no
Measured from the social stand
point the ball was a complete success,
and the engineers are not complain
ing about the financial success. The
net receipts would have been larger
bad it not been for the weather, but
despite this drawback a neat sum
will be carried over to help defray
the expenses of the big meeting' in
Lincoln later in the season. The ball
was given for this purpose, and the
engineers received cordial support
from friends and business generally.
The big meeting will be held in
Lincoln during the last week in Juno,
and leading members of the Brother
hood and the Auxiliary will be pres
ent from all psrts of the country.
Grand Chief Stone has arranged to
be present. The local division is plan
ning to show the visiting brothers and
sisters a royal good time, and those
who know of the enterprise and en
thusiasm of the local locomotive en
gineers are resting easy in the
assurance that the visitors will go
away impressed with Lincoln and
injected into the stock of the new
company something like one and one
half millions of dollars worth of what
is commonly known as water; and
"Whereas, The payment of interest
and dividends on this will largely fall
on the wage-earners of this city, since
they and their families are the prin
cipal patrons of said company; there
fore be it
"Resolved, That we protest against
this action- and-- demand that - some
means be devised whereby the valu
ation allowed by the state railway
commission or some system whereby
the interests of the people of Lincoln
and suburbs will be protected, be
made the basis for capitalization to
the end that interest and dividends
be paid only on a fair and actual in
vestment; and be it further
"Resolved, That we favor the pur
chase of the street car system by the
city at the earliest date practicable."
The appointment of standing com
mittees was deferred until the next
meeting. Some interesting talks were
made concerning the proposed city
charter,- but no definite action was
The Central Labor Union met
Tuesday evening and elected officers
for the ensuing year. A lot of detail
business was looked after and some
attention was paid to the recent street
railway merger. The following offi
cers were elected:
D. J. Hanna, President.
A. B. Woelhoff, Vice-President.
F. A. Kates, Secretary.
T. W. Evans, Treasurer.
The internal troubles of the Inter
national Electrical Workers was
brought up, but the central body de
cided it was not in a position to
take action. This matter was
threshed out at the Denver conven
The following resolution was
adopted, referring to the recent mer
ger of Lincoln's street railways:
"Whereas, It appears from the rec
ords of the nuige'r of the Lincoln
Traction company and the Citizens'
Railway company that there is to be
PENSION THE FIREMEN.
Senator Ransom of Douglas has in
troduced a bill providing that all
metropolitan cities and cities of the
first-class shall pension all firemen of
the paid fire departments who shall
have first served twenty-five years
and shall then elect to go on the re
tired list. At tiie deiath of the pen
sioned fireman the pension shall con
tinue to his widow as long as she
lives and remains unmarried. In case
there is no widow, then the pension
shall be paid to the minor chiWren.--
MOORE GOT A BUMP.
Well Known Burlington Engineer Gets
Hurt in a Wreck.
George H. Moore, the big Burlington
engineer who is better Known as
"Sandhill" Moore, was in a wreck at
LaPlatte early last week. . A work
train failed to get into the clear in
time to let the fast train which Moore
was pulling go by. Owing to a fog
the signals could not be seen and
there was no flagman out. Moore
reversed and apolled the air and then
jumped. In alighting he sustained
some severe bruises and a fractured
clavicle. He was brought to Lincoln
and taken to St. Elizabeth's hospital.
He is getting along all right, but it
will be a week or two before he again
mounts the footboard.
Lincoln's War Was Against
All Kinds of Servitude
Abraham Lincoln's memory was
celebrated last week in all kinds of
ways, by all kinds of people and from
all kinds of motives.' Pagans deified
him for the ephemeral things he had
doue;,... others . honored., him : for the,
eternal spirit that led him on. Re
actionaries celebrated his dead and
sone achievements; progressives drew
inspiration irom his ideals. Literal
:sts confined his words for liberty to
t' e nairow ar.d temporary occasion of
the anti-slavery struggle; national .
minds Kavo to tnem the breadth and
scope of the in earessible conflict be
tween special privilege and common
right, of which the anti-slavery strug
gle was but a passing phase. For
ourselves, we regard Lincoln as
greater than his epoch. Backward
over the course of history he saw in
other forms the very conflict in whicli
in one of its forms he was a par
ticipant; forward into the mysterious
future he glimpsed still other forms
of that same conflict. In homely
phrase he described the spirit of the
defenders of privilege in all ages, past
or to come, and Inclusive of his own,
as the spirit of those who say to
their fellows, "You -work and toil and
earn bread, and I'll eat it." Who can
read those of Lincoln's words without
i esBfaincJ.aat bjs perception ot the .
principles of liberty was limited by
no single battle in the war for liberty.
Who can doubt that he saw, beyond
the slave of the cotton field driven to
work, the advancing shadow of the
slave of the factory begging for work?
It is not what Abraham Lincoln did
in a national crisis, but the. undying
principle he involved, that exalts his
name and preserves his memory.
Louis F. Post, in Chicago Public.
GETTING READY TO DANCE.
Thrilling Stunt Being Pulled Off Daily at Lincoln.
First Araiwal Ball
JOURNEYMEN BARBERS' UNION
Tlwrsday, March 4
BRISE'S ORCHESTRA. UNION MUSIC.
Barbers Making Every Preparation for
a Merry Time.
"We've been a long time making up
our minds to give an annual ball,"
lemarked the old-time barber as he
adjusted the towel around The Wage
worker man's neck, "but we are goinj .
to make up for lost time by giving
our members and our friends one of
the best ever held in this good town."
"Getting busy, eh?" queried the man
in the chair.
"Busy! Well I guess yes. Say, the
committee is working their heads off
arranging for a little the swellest time '
you ever read about. Wiiliams' hall,
where our ball will be held, has one r .
of the finest dancing floors in the
west, and we've selected an orchestra
that is strictly all right. We are going
to make it a bali that will commend us
to the good people of Lincoln, and
set a precedent that will cause us to
give a ball every year."
"What kept you from it all these '
"Well, we were a little different, I
guess. And again we have not gone
into the society game to any great
extent. Our hours are long, you know,
and bv the time we have stood around
on our feet twelve hours a day we
don't feel much like the giddy waltz
and the entrarcing two-step.
we decided that to keep-
of the game we would have to give
a ball, and we are going to make
good, too. We want all you union
men to help us make the first ball a
By this time the face powder was
on and the towel off. The first annual
ball of the Journeyman Barbers' Union
of Lincoln will be held at Wiliams
hall on March 4 the day that Presf-'
dent Roosevelt steps downrhd out
and William Howard Taff steps up
and in. You can not forget the date,
if you want to. Kni you shouldn't
miss the dance if you can help i c.
giddy waltz . I
o-step. But vv-v
Cartoonist Spencer of The Omaha World-Herald Pictures the State's Free Employment Bureau
Look for the label and take' nothing
wearable or smokable without it. '
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