The Conservative (Nebraska City, Neb.) 1898-1902, May 04, 1899, Page 8, Image 8

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8 Che Conservative.
PITTSHUKG , Pa. , April 27 , 1899.
Nebraska City , Neb.
DEAR SIR : I have received the two
packngcs of THE CONSERVATIVE of issue
of April 18 , having previously received
several numbers of other dates which I
read with interest. The general make
up of your paper , the style in which you
present the readable matter along with
the clean-cut statements of facts and
logical conclusions presented to the
readers very clearly establish that the
aim and object of the publisher ( as is in
dicated by the name of the publication )
is to conserve good political morals in
and under our political system.
I most fully concur with your state
ments of the history and records of
political parties , especially as regards
the origin and sequel of the republican
party. Your tribute to Grover Cleve
land I also in good part agree with ; al
though he failed to arise to the demands
of the hour and failed to redeem his own
and pnrty pledges to repeal and wipe out
the corrupt salary-grab acts of the in
famous , corrupt congress which passed
the "back-pay steal and salary-grab act
of 1878 , " because of which every demo
cratic paper and convention up to Cleve
land's election , howled for the impeach
ment of President Grant for signing it.
Grover Cleveland , during his first cam
paign , in a letter to the writer said if ho
was elected that ho would recommend
the repeal of the salary-grab act of 1878.
This pledge he failed to keep and the
result is , we see today , the corrupt ex
travagance prevailing in all of our muni-
cipal , state and national governments ,
along with the bankrupt condition of the
same ; and political bosses like Richard
Croker and M. S. Quay , Tom Platt et al.
treating our public franchises and offices
as legitimate spoils , in which pot-houso
politicians revel with impunity. I hold
no other result is possible under our
state and national government paternal
ism. This damnable delusion under our
system of government places the indus
trial classes at the mercy of political
knaves and thieves ; and the most de
plorable fact of all is , "My people love
to have it so. "
Our Public OlliciiilH.
I appreciate your ardent desire to
avert the inevitable fate that awaits our
American experiment at manhood suf
frage in the near future ; but with our
public schools and public press inculca
ting the damnable , pusillanimous senti
ment that their governments should sup
port the people and not the people sup
port their governments , no other result
than an ignominious failure is possible.
This corrupt degenerate education has
resulted in producing two prominent
traits of character among the American
people , either of which is at variance
with good government or true demo
cracy. The first is , that it does not mat
ter what the government pays for a ser
vice , it costs the people nothing. This
lias resulted in filling all of our public
offices , from the lowest county office to
the president of the United States , with
notorious incompetents men who have
been noted failures in every business
they ever undertook requiring business
sagacity , energy and tact. It has come
to this : If a man fails in any legitimate
ousiuess in competition with other men ,
10 immediately betakes himself to the
public offices. I noticed in my short
lifetime this disposition on the part of
the American people to elevate the most
notorious failures in private life to the
lighest places of trust and responsibility
in public life. Again , the disposition to
make heroes out of the political dema
gogues that fasten upon our various
civil governments. The hero worship
of the American people is another insu
perable bar to self-government. They
transcend any other people on earth in
ihis pusillanimous spirit opposed to true
democracy. We boast of our American
democracy , but to an intelligent man
who contemplates this disposition to
lioro worship on the part of the masses
of the people it is no wonder that politi
cal mountebanks can discount their in
telligence at even less than 10 to 1.
This I think must convince you that
the prospect for forming a new party in
patriotism and integrity in public office
is not a very promising enterprise with
the American people. Political plat
forms , nor yet legislative 'enactments ,
never produce patriots or honest public
officials , and nothing more clearly dem
onstrates the fact that no one can bring
a clean thing out of an unclean than the
American people's first century's exper
iment at self-government , unless itisthe
history of the republican party. Take
that party composed as it professed to
be of the majority of the moral element
predominating in our nation the high-
toned religious people originated as it
was xipoii a platform of religious princi
ples as sacred as the tenets of our holy
Christianity. And yet the history of
the civilized world does not furnish a
parallel of unbridled corruption from its
very first entrance upon the political
stage of its existence to the present day.
Political knavery and corruptions crown
its eveiy page.
Republican Party's IJirth.
Having helped usher this party into
power , the writer being in the conven
tion held in old Lafayette Hall , Pitts-
burg , in 1856 , that crystalized its first
party platform , being a young man and
a novice in political methods , I was very
greatly surprised at the evidences of the
lack of real integrity I saw manifested
in that convention on the part of some
of the men who had done the most to
create the abolition sentiment. Horace
Greeley , who perhaps more than any
other one mnn in the United States , had
helped to fire the heart of the Northern
people , used all his influence to try to
prevent the convention from organizing
a party on the platform of freedom to
the slaves at that time. I was the more
deeply impressed from the fact that the
reasons he assigned for not organizing a
party were almost the opposite from the
teachings of his newspaper that slav
ery was the sum of all villainies. Mr.
Greoley's course impressed me in that
convention that Horace '
Greeloy's polit
ical ambition and not a high-toned pat
riotic desire to place the government of
the American republic upon the lofty
plane of the declaration of independence
"that all men have the inalienable right
of life , liberty and happiness , " actuated
the man ; and not only Mr. Greeley but
also with many other politicians this
was the leading motive.
Uncolii and His Cabinet * .
I became more firmly convinced of
this fact when I saw Abraham Lincoln
form his first cabinet , some of them ,
noted political knaves , who had done as
much to corrupt the democratic party as
the most corrupt political knaves that
party ever produced. An experience of
a few mouths in the war department at
Washington City , where I was daily
brought into contact with President
Lincoln and leading members of his
cabinets , confirmed me in this opinion :
that no matter how great were the
moral issues that were involved in the
conflict over slavery and the rebellion of
the Southern states in the minds of the
people , they had but little to do with the
administration of our general govern
ment and its public offices. Even Ab
raham Lincoln very soon discovered that
he had surrounded himself with politi
cians whoso slogan was "to the victors
belong the spoils , " and that the civil
war afforded them , an unprecedented
opportunity to enrich themselves and
friends. Just as the Spanish and Phil
ippine war affords the same unscrup
ulous class who today are disgracing the
American people with such scandals as
the medicated beef outrage is doing.
The Pennsylvania contribution to the
Lincoln cabinet was the "Winnebago
Chief. " He dubbed all patriotic men
( who dared to raise their voices against
such prostitution of our government to
the avarice and greed of pothouse poli
ticians ) as "literary fellers. " Lincoln
soon found out that if he would save his
administration from a dismal failure
and the national government from , de
struction ho must make a change in his
political advisers and he exiled the
"Winuebago Chief" and called to his
aid the man who more than all others
prevented the success of treason. But
such was the lack of true patriotism and
so predominant was the spirit of strat
egy , treason and spoils with the political
mountebacks controlling the two great
parties ; and so pusillanimous are the
American people , that the iron-nerved ,