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The President is a peace man in the sense that he is at all times ready to fight for it. One of his sayings is, “It is not sufficient to parry a blow." He who deals a wicked blow should be stricken. It is well to parry, but the better part is to hit back; and when it is to do, hit quick, hard and repeatedly.
He knew what he was saying when he spoke in his message to Congress of the anarchists and gave them notice. The stir in the “groups” shows the shot told, and they are disturbed deeply. Much has been said by the anarchial propaganda, claiming that they are citizens with rights and liberties to conspire against all governments, and in this country there has usually been much said in behalf of government that was ill directed. It is not a frontal attack to say that we need laws to keep out the anarchists. They are with us; the question is what to do with them. The thing practical is that those who are in this country, and clamoring for the liberty of murder, should take their departure. We have islands in Asian seas, the most desolate rocks to be seen anywhere. The barren islands of the tropics are peculiarly forbidding, some of them without trees or the color of verdure, the ragged edges of creation. There are other islands where there are fruit, eatable animals, birds and a chance for the growth of rice. That is, there is a way to make an honest living, making endless seclusion capital punishment, that the foes of all forms of government may teach themselves how to govern themselves or perish in the attempt.
The Chicago anarchists thought armies in the cities could be defeated with a few dynamite shells, and having disposed so easily of the armed forces of government, they organizing universal revolution, proposed to begin by establishing government by “groups of four" all over North America. This continent was to furnish the first example of the conquests of all that is called “law and order” by "groups.” The first requirement was secretaries, who could write and speak six languages, and the next was chemists and gas pipes for the home-made bombs needed. The unions of working men were to be destroyed with the rest.
The first thing to be done was the abolishment of the United States; this merely to clear the continent of the principal obstacle to the rule of the brethren. North America was divided into nine sections, each under group government. Canada was number one and Mexico and the rest South was number nine. The United States were dissolved and reconstructed in seven sections. Red and black flags were carried in the streets. Labor as organized was doomed that the wages system might soon be abolished.
Immediately after the death of President McKinley, and the trial and condemnation of Most, who preaches murder, the London Times gave an account of anarchism, that is of the pertinence to the attitude of the disorderlies on this side of the Atlantic, who hold that we defend murder as one of the
political arts of liberty, for the propaganda of the Katapuna Society of bloodsuckers and blood shedders in the Philippines. We quote:
“Immediately before the murderous attack on the late President, Most's journal wrote, “The greatest of all follies in the world is to believe that there can be any crime of any sort against despots and their accomplices. The article, it would seem from the charge of the judge to the jury in Most's case, was directed to encouraging the murder of heads of States,' as a class, which we know to be in accordance with the prisoner's ideas. The absurdity of classing a President of the United States among 'despots' is sufficiently obvious and contemptible.
"M. Zola, whose courageous protests in the cause of justice contributed so much to rivet public attention on the Dreyfus case, has undertaken to defend M. Leon Tailhade's savage appeal to anarchism on its literary merits! M. Zola regards the anarchist editor of the Libertaire as “a poet, thrilling in style and full of illustrations'—among the latter the most conspicuous being Caserio, who killed President Carnot, and who, to the regret of M. Zola's poetic friend, has found no successor to deal with the Tsar, M. Loubet, M. Waldeck-Rousseau, and all the rest of them. But even M. Zola could not find much of the exculpatory 'thrill of style in the genuine German Grobheit of Johann Most.
“In the language of the Freiheit, which so closely and so significantly preceded, and almost predicted, the murder of President McKinley, the doctrines of anarchism are set forth in all their brutal directness, without any of the literary adornments which fascinate M. Zola. There is nothing new in the preaching of Most. More than twenty years ago he was good enough to take up his abode in this country and to spread among us his liberalizing theories. When the Emperor Alexander II. was savagely done to death on March 13, 1881, Most came out, in the next issue of his journal, with a furious shriek of triumph, reproaching the revolutionists of other nations with their lack of courage in failing to follow up the lead of the Russian Nihilists and scoffing at the 'whimpering' of the civilized world over the crime that had shocked humanity. The ruling classes were warned by Most that their doom was sealed, and it was triumphantly proclaimed that they knew it. 'From Constantinople to Washington,' he wrote, 'they tremble for their long-forfeited heads. For this outrageous production Most was indicted in this country and was convicted by a jury at the Central Criminal Court."
It is in the lines and between the lines, written and spoken as Governor of New York by Roosevelt, that his primary quality is vital earnestness, and it takes the form of thorough going business. He is an American of Americans for the greater America. He is for expansion—that is growth. He is a Civil Service reformer by instinct, cultivation, conscience, combativeness, and a warlike sense of duty. He is for fairness in taxation, and has been a student of the sentiments of the people and the public wants. He is a party man, of and for the organization. He is not of the Mugwump brain or blood. Of all public men he is the most outspoken. He thinks aloud, for the people, and is wide awake, broad, keen, positive, progressive, and is still a man who acquires, and promises to abide long with us. He deals with corporations with the same acute intensity of justice he desires for men. In his persona! relations he is inclined to amiability. He may be a disturber of ignoble peace, but does not quarrel. He dictates. He does not indulge resentments. He is brave, and the brave man is generous.
The rules ordinarily applied to politicians and holders of high office, do not seem to be adapted to the President. He is really a politician, only he plays according to his own rules. He endeavors to follow the wishes of the politicians, Senators and Congressmen, as far as is compatible with his standard and idea as to his duty, but very often he does just what they do not want him to do. He simply will not violate his own conscience. The temptation is not really tempting. He has not time to consider whether he jeopardizes his future. He simply has a higher standard than the average politician. He has confidence that the people will sustain him in doing what he regards as his duty. He is so constituted that he can not take a middle course. He is absolutely right or wrong in every act. There is no compromise of right in his nature. His works are straight from the shoulder, as his words from his lips.
The appointment of Henry C. Payne as Postmaster General, was the shrewdest kind of politics. It secured the services of a keen and experienced politician for his Administration, and, at the same time, of an expert in postoffice affairs. Payne's political advice will be invaluable. The appointment of Governor Shaw, of Iowa, as Secretary of the Treasury, is also good politics. Shaw is not a politician in the general acceptance of the word, having entered the game only about five or six years ago, yet he has made himself a force throughout the West and as the champion of gold did much to make that policy popular. He commands confidence in the East and admiration in the West.
The Roosevelt Administration has many unusual characteristics. It is bustling with activity. Following the President's cue, there is little delay nowadays in settling important matters, and there seems to be more vim and vigor in governmental work than was ever known. Gossips see more Cabinet changes in prospect. They insisted that Shaw's appointment meant the retirement of Secretary of Agriculture Wilson, but the President put a stop to that by official announcement. He knows full well how valuable the Agricultural Secretary is, and that he has done more for the farmer in a practical way than any Secretary who preceded him in the farmers' department.
A letter from Washington, dated on the one hundred and second anniversary of the death of George Washington, is written by a close observer, who professes to state the facts from the point of a trained observer. It is, perhaps, the most carefully drawn statement that has been made:
“Washington, December 14. “President Roosevelt continues to advance his standard of public service, broadening his rules governing patronage to the great dismay of politicians, some of whom begin to wonder if any active politicians will be permitted to remain in office. While the President is personally popular and greatly respected, politicians do not like his methods and his distinct insistence upon the highest possible merit in public service. They are inclined to regard his theory of government patronage as unpractical, as well as something of an infringement upon their rights. They are asking if there is to be any incentive to partizan endeavor and whence are the workers for party success to come, if the chances of reward are to steadily diminish by the extension of the merit system and the insistence upon mental and moral qualifications, which most active partizans can not meet. They do not believe that the mere belief in principle and the desire to see the party in which one believes succeed, with comparatively little prospect for reward through appointment to office, will be sufficient encouragement to partizans to spend their time and use their strength in working for party success. They insist that there must be taken into consideration the self-interest which so generally prompts partizan activity. They insist that President Roosevelt is setting too high a standard and almost resent his cross-examining them as to the character and capacity of those whom they recommend for office. In fact, they grow apprehensive for fear party machinery may break down for want of an adequate supply of patronage oil, and, at the same time, they are embarrassed in paying personal political debts with patronage, as they have heretofore been enabled to do. Then, too, Senators are somewhat disturbed because, in his determination to be 'President himself,' Theodore Roosevelt insists upon the Presidential prerogative of making his own appointments, regardless of the construction of the constitutional provision authorizing the President to make appointments 'by and with the consent of the Senate,' which has, in years past, caused Senators to insist upon dictating appointments.
“The events of the present week have emphasized and broadened the President's policy as to patronage. His announcement that he will make judicial appointments himself, but be glad of recommendation and advice, is of the highest importance. It means that judicial appointments are not to be used to pay political debts of Senators, and that the President, after consultation