Democratic watchman. (Bellefonte, Pa.) 1855-1940, January 09, 1931, Image 1
—A fire a month at the Y goes to prove that they do have hot times up at that popular recreation- al center. If Pinchot pursues his present policies throughout his administra- tion he will make Mussolini “look iike a piker.” Extra session or no extra ses- sion the Congressional calendar should be cleared before Congress- men go home. — The. founders of the govern- ment were much more afraid of executive usurpation than of legis- lative inefficiency. __We had been looking for “the January thaw” to open up the ground and pour copious quantities of melting snows into it, but we can't have that unless we get some- thing to thaw, The Auditors are at work on the County's books. They have'nt delved far enough into the affairs yet to give any hint of what may be expected. However, we venture the prediction that the cost sheet will show that there was no depres- sion in government in 1930, —Political gossip is to the effect that former County Treasurer Jim Heverly is on the preferred list and will land a nice job under the Pin- chot regime. Well, Jim certainly was for Pinchot. We got it in no uncertain tones from his own lips one night when we had the temeri- ty to ask him where he stood in the primary fight. On official ballots for 1931 elec- tions in Pennsylvania there might be four regular parties this year. The Prohibitionists had lost their right to a place on the ticket but have probably gotten it back and as the Liberals cast 2 per cent of the vote given to the candidate having the largest plurality in last falls’ election they will be entitled to a place if they want it. -—~We are not a believer in gov- ernment ownership, but we hate to think what would happen to Belle- fonte if her water supply were not in the hands of her taxpayers. Oc- casionally we fritter money away, as we did on that pitameter project, but on the whole the Bellefonte Wa- ter Department has been managed so that consumers have gotten more water at less cost than they would have had had the system been own- ed by any individual or corporation. —The crew of an American ves- sel mutinied in a Russian port on Monday. It had been given shore leave and went Communistic. Here's hoping that our immigration au- thorities will have deaf ears to the appeals of that crew when they try to get back to the good old U. S. A, When they waken up to discov- er what they've got to do to make good in Stalin's “Four Year Plan” they'll realize that a ‘bread line” in this country looks like Utopia by comparison with the lot they drew, —Listen, if you want to get sent up for life there is no need of go- ing out and murdering some one, Just desert your wife. Then the Court will order you to pay her a dollar a day for support. Fall down on that and be brought into court for contempt. Then you stand a chance to be sent toa work-house where you can earn sixty-five cents a day with which to pay the wife the dollar. You'll be sure of a meal ticket for life on such a job, be- cause its exactly like taking one Sep up an icy hill and slipping back 0. —To the inquisitive person who dropped us a card on which was written merely this interrogation: “Why, haven't you told us how long it is, yet?” we reply that ninety- five days must elapse before we can get back to business. That is, the opening of the trout fishing sea- son is what he had in mind. We might get “balled” up about the close of the game season a=4 the date of ground hog day, as we did last year, but when it comes to the king of out-door sports we're like the bears and the snakes, we know when to crawl out of our hole, —Isn't the Hon. besmeared with luck. On Thurs- day afternoon, September 18th, Mr. Pinchot, standing on the court house steps in Bellefonte, said: “I have Just had a very satisfactory talk with Senator Scott and Representa- tive Holmes and I want you to sup- port them.” Then Senator Scott and the Hon. Holmes told us the y were one hundred per cent fi - chot’s program. us Bh chot’s program was to have Willi am D, Mansfield made president pro tempore of the Senate and C. G. Goodnough speaker of the House. didn’t care anything about who Co ‘harm to the industrial — VOL. 76. The Election of Mr. Daix. Contrary to wide-spread expecta- tion Governor-elect Pinchot has been defeated in his attempt to control the delibrations of the State Senate through selection of a hand-picked president pro tempore. The im- portance of this office lies in its prerogative to appoint the standing committees. Mr. Pinchot assumed that any other than a man of his own choice would exercise this power to defeat his legisiative programme during the present session of the General Assembly. It was a pre- posterous proposition but in direct line with the attitude he maintain- ed during the campaign to the ef- fect that the election of Mr, Hemp- hill would be a sacrifice to monoply. It would have caused no such ca- lamity. The office was created by the con- stitution of 1874 and from that time it has been an unbroken custom to select the president pro tem at the close of each session and re-elect him at the opening of the succeeding session, At the close of the last session the favor was bestowed by unanimous vote on Senator Augus- tus F. Daix Jr. of Philadelphia. No complaint was made in the interval against his capability or character. The only objection to his re-election was that he had shown independence enough to vote against the nominee of his party for reasons which seem- ed to his conscience satisfactory. This is not a crime inthe estimation of the average citizen. President Hoover appraises it as a virtue. Taking one consideration with another the disappointment of Mr. Pinchot is a victory for the consti- tution which guarantees the coni- plete independence of each of the three departments of the govern- ment, a vindication of a fair tradi- tion of the General Assembly and a just reward for faithful and long continued service in the Senate. The margin was narrow, twenty- four to twenty-two, but a ‘miss is as good as a mile” in such things and we positively refuse to believe that the interests of the public have been betrayed because a rather self- ish official, a glutton for power, nas been frustrated in a somewhat sinis- ter aspiration, The government at Harrisburg will still live. “We may be happy yet, you bet.” ——It is said that President Hoov- er will adopt the ‘mailed-fist” method of administering the govern- ment in future. Even that might be an improvement on his equivocal practices of the past, An Inexplicable Problem. It is not easy to figure out why the administration at Washington is so set in its opposition to an extra session of Congress soon after the expiration or the present session, After the election of 1918 returned a majority adverse to the Woodrow Wilson administration the Republic- an leaders, with singular unanimity went about to force an extra session of the then incoming Congress in order to embarrass the President during the last half of the term. There was no uncompleted legislation of vital importance on the calendar but there were abundant opportunities for investigations and other devices for making campaign capital. This time “the shoe is on the other foot,” and there is a vast dif- ference in other respects. There are on the calendar a great many meas- ures of legislation which are cer- tain to fail of passage during the | present session. Among these are ' bills that have been under consider- ation, in one branch or the other, for a long time and in which the people of the country are vitally Holmes just concerned. It is practically certain that the new Congress will enact some, if not all, of them at the ear- 'liest opportunity. But unless there is an extra session the opportunity will be delayed for nearly a year and within that time much harm may be done. present Congress has done all the life of the country that can be done. The | Grundy tariff legislation of the last The Martin-Mellon-Vare faction | session 8 has cut i There is, or at least there ought to be, no foundation for the impres- | ‘sion that Congress in session is a Part of Mr. Pin- STATE RIGHTS AN BELLEFONTE, PA. Norris Will Not be Expelled. The Republican leaders of the Senate have wisely determind to re- fuse to support the movement of Mr. Lucas, general director of the National committee, to expel Sena- tor Norris from the party. It would be a hazardous undertaking, they reason, and might do much more harm than good. It is agreed among them that Norris is a disturbing element in the organization but he has just been re-elected Senator as the nominee of the Republican par- ty of Nebraska and has six years to serve. Besides his expulsion at this time would leave the party in the minority at the organization of the next Congress and demote alot of Senators who now hold important committee chairmanships. Mr. Lucas was appointed to his present office at the personal solici- tation of President Hoover, and itis generally understood that his views on the subject of punishing Norris are the views of the President and that failure to endorse them implies a rebuke to the ostensible head of the party. But they reason that Mr. Hoover has made so many blunders in directing the policies of the party that it is wiser to rebuke than to re- prove him. First, he selected Dr. Work for chairman and he proved a failure. Then he selected Claudius Huston, whose financial operations made him impossible. Finally he selected Senator Fess and Lucas who were both inefficient and treacherous. Expelling Norris from the party ‘would be approving the methods by which Lucas treacherously fought a nominee of the party whom he was under moral obligations to support. That would be a menace to every am- bitious man in the party and a di- rect threat to every Senator and Representative in service. It would be enthroning an individual of ques- tionable methods as supreme master of the organization. That is too wide a latitude to bestow on any man whose chief characteristic is sycophancy, and the Republican leaders of the Senate have decided against it, even though it implies a rebuke of the President. As a mat- ter of fact the Senate leaders have little concern for the welfare of the President. ~The fund placed in a Wash- ington bank at the discretion of Bob Lucas, executive director of the Republican National committee, may not have been christened a slush fund but it served that pur- pose all right. The Railroad Grouping Plan, The plan of grouping the railroads of the east, recently agreed upon by the four major transporation corper- ations concerned, may be all that could be desired. It is certainlyin conformity with the provisions of the act of Congress adopted several years ago and widely discussed by railroad executives, the Interstate Commerce Commission and the pub- lic press since. But Senator Couzins, of Michigan, is fully justified in his protest that the speedy endorsement of the action by the President in ad- vance of its consideration by the Interstate Commerce Commission was both unethical and may be in- finitely harmful. The law requires the approval of the Commission as essential to the agreement. The Interstate Commerce Commis- sion is a creature of the President. All the members of the Commission are appointed by him and may be removed at his discretion. After a lengthy consideration of the subject the Commission devised a plan for the operation of the law. If in a measure at least, preserved the pol- icy of competition by creating five major systems instead of four as expressed in the new arrangement. Unrestrained the Commission might have insisted upon its own plan, which had been rejected by the corporations, or a compromise which would have served the public quite as well and conveyed to the corpor- ations notice that they are creatures | instead of masters of vernment, menace to business prosperity, The ig 2 While Mr. Coolidge was President 'a precisely similar condition was presented to the Tariff Commission, likewise a creature of the executive, When the Commission made a de- | commerce 10 cision unsatisfactory to the Presi- ats Ey is the bone, practically closed the mar- gent one member was induced to re- spon; ouse and didn't set kets of the world to our products sign by the offer of a more desir- up any opposition to Goodnough but and vastly increased the cost of gable job, another was removed and | they were desperately interested in | living. Nothing more can be done a new body created which expressed } e organization of the Senate and in that direction, and it can hardly | the President's views on the brogght out Daix in opposition to be claimed that putting proper re- | ject. The premature approval of nsfield. The result was that when Straints on monopolies will be anir- | plan adopted by the sub- the railroad execu- the Legislature organized last Mon- reparable evil. That is about all an tives in this case might easily be day Holmes didn’t have to stand u and be counted on making good nis promise of September 18, whereas our luckless Senator looked right into the mouth of the cannon when he forgot his promise of September 18, and voted for Daix. | extra session would do, Maybe there is just reason for the popular impression that Congress in session is a menace to public interests. Look who con- trols Congress! construed by the members of the Interstate Commerce Commission as an admonition to “watch their step.” Good jobs are scarce at present and it will be a sad moment for the country when Presidential bulldoz- ing becomes the rule, D FEDERAL UNION. Sam Lewis Selected for Highway Commissioner. The selection of Sam Lewis for the important office of Highway Commissioner reveals the mastery of Joe Grundy in the incoming Pinchot administration. Republican party leaders have been variously affiliated from time to time but in all the changes Lewis has been the faithful adherent of Grundy. In the mixup of the primary campaign, last spring, Lewis was Grundy’s choice for Gov- ernor. When the Mellons, of Pitts- burgh, refused to accept Lewis, Grundy broke up the conference and ‘he and Lewis turned in for Pinchot, not because they liked Pinchot, for they didn't, but in order to oppose ‘he Mellons. Sam Lewis has been an active ele- ment in the political life of Pennsyl- vania for many years and has never done anything in his life ex- cept hold office. His first office was postmaster at York, From that post he became corporation clerk in the office of the Auditor General, under Charlie Snyder. Then he suc- ceeded Snyder as Auditor General and at the expiration of his term was elected State Treasurer. After that the office of special deputy Auditor General was created for him and he is still in that job. He sup- ported Pinchot for the nomination for Governor in 1920 and quarreled with him during his term of office. In announcing the appointment of Lewis Mr. Pinchot says ‘we dis- cussed at length the Johey to be adopted during the next four years and found ourselves in | complete agreement.” It may be as- ‘sumed, therefore, that Mr. Lewis will pursue whatever policy Mr, Pin- chot suggests, This he can be depended upon to do as long as Mr, Grundy and Mr. Pinchot are in “complete agreement” on every- thing. It may also be confi- ‘dently expected that the service will ‘be efficient and that the personnel will be responsive to any call for | political work during the term, go long as the complete agreement | continues. bd ——1f Senator Norris in “Wolving the Muscle Shoals problem ‘and abolishes the lame duck session of Congress he will have glory ‘enough without tampering with the form of electing Presidents. rn — Luzerne county appears to be afflicted with all the political sins in the calendar. With a consider- able number of officials already in jail a blanket net has been spread for others, —The days are gradually grow- ing longer. However they will never get long enough for us to get our ‘work done without resort to artifi- cial light. Senator Borah is against a ‘third party movement, Corruption ‘may run rampant in the organiza- ‘tion but Borah's ‘heart is true to Moll.” rr rm— ——Al Smith is now “one of us.” He began service as a columnist last Sunday and his first contribution gives promise of an interesting series. ——The Republican row in Har- interesting but only risburg is an incident compared with the greater ruction in Washington. — It's all right to avert a special session of Congress if possible, Special session by sacrificing necessary leg- islation is too costly a process. —If Mr. Hoover's idea of Con- gress is well founded it might be a good idea to abolish that branch of the government entirely. —Mr. Pinchot has little cause to worry. When he begins dividing the spoils all the party leaders will come at his beckon. JANUARY 9, 1931. highway or NO. 2. Assessments Once More. From the Harrisburg Telegraph. The assessment evil has turned up in the newspapers again. This time in Fayette couaty, where Coun- ty Commissioner George W. Hibbs, sitting as a member of the board of appeals considering the triennial as- sessment, has severely condemned the whole system. “The inequality of the tax burden is an outrage on the property own- ers of the country,” he asserted. “Fayette county proper is assessed anywhere from 10 to 150 per cent of its market value, A similar con- dition exists elsewhere. In West- moreland county the assessments range from 10 to 152 per cent. In- vestigation has proved that this is true,” the commissioner asserted. He emphasized “market value" as the basis of assessment and then added that there were not ten per- sons in Fayette county qualified to do the work. “And when I say ten, I'm very conservative,” he added. “We need a new system of as- sessing property,” Mr. Hibbs con- tinued. “Just imagine, we are us- ing laws enacted 150 years ago. The commissioners are allowed thir- ty days in which to go over the county to hear appeals and try to clear up complaints. In reality it would take a hoard of competent men two years to do the work in the right way.” If Mr, Hibbs had his way, the commissioners would be permitted to select ten men to assess the entire county and discard the present sys- tem, under which there are nearly sixty assesors. Property would then be assessed at its market value and an equitable assessment made. State Treasurer Edward Martin recently voiced stmuar sentiments, An organization has been formed with headquarters in Pittsburgh to get the matter before the ture. It is to be hoped nothing will happen to involve the assess- ment reform with collections, an un- fortunate union of two worthy bills that did much to kill both when they were before the lawmakers some years ago. Assessment is one thing; tax collections are quite an- other. There is no question that we are paying too much for our col- lections, but the loss on that item is small as com with the tre- 'mendous benefits taken from one | class of property owners and hand- ed over to ancther by inequalities of assessment. : rr ———— A ——————————— Preserving Private Zeal for Public Good From the Philadelphia Record. Railway chess. Maneuvers of the four-trunk rail merger. The public does not understand the moves, but senses the import- ance of this mammoth game. What is the purpose of the struggle? Why this 10-year effort to estab- lish a balance of power between the railroad giants? Why should the Government not have forced the five-trunk plan in the first place, or kept out of the | controversy entirely and let the rail- roads merge as they saw fit? Since the Interstate Commerce Commission regulates rates and | services what difference to the pub- ‘lic which railroad merges with which? The 10-year delay was necessary to preserve the delicate balance be- tween private initiative and Govern- ‘ment regulation. five-trunk consolidation, I. C. C. proposed 10 years ago, would have destroyed private initia- tive, The driving power in our great ‘railroads is private initiative—the | personal pride that dominates the entire personnel of a railroad's or- from trackwalker | ganization | president. Unregulated zeal for tc Legisla- If the Government had forced the which the it | “our road” 'SPAWLS FROM THE KEYSTONE, —Bdward J. Hugar, 57, shot and kill- | ed himself at his home in Lock Haven, on Tuseday. He had been in ill health for some time. —Bertram RK. Shimp, aged 69 years, the last blacksmith In Lewistown, was found dead in the office of his shop by his daughter, Mrs. Anna Simpson, on Tuesday morning. —Under a resolution adopted at its ninety-sixth annual meeting in Me- chanicsburg, the $8000 in the treasury of the Allen and East Pennsboro Society for the recovery of stolen horses and mules and the detection of thieves will be distributed among the 500 members. | The society will disband. —Harvey Waite and Carl Rupert, of Beech Creek, were arrested by the Lock Haven detail of State Police and detec- tive David L. Probst, of Lock Haven, last week, charged with the theft of eighteen chickens from Walter Glock, a Beech Creek farmer on the night of December 16. They entered pleas of guilty before alderman Allen Sterner and were held for court in the sum of $500. —Unemployed and disgusted, George Disgusted, according to Pittsburgh police, sought to drown his disgust in liquor. Digusted's disgusting conduct aroused the disgust of officials at a welfare agen- cy and they called police. The disgust - ed Disgusted was even more disgusted when they haled him into Court Tuesday morning. The Magistrate became dis- gusted with Disgusted and, in his dis- gust, fined Disgusted $10 or 30 days in the workhouse. Disgusted went to jail even more disgusted. —After four months of blindness, Jane Hill, a senior in the high school at Berwick, again has her sight. Moreover, her perfect attendance is unbroken. She had been having trouble with her eyes but thought little of it until she awoke blind one morning. She continued in school, led to classes by a friend and a younger brother, and kept up with the classwork through hearing recitations. Examination finally disclosed diseased wisdom teeth and, when these were re- moved, her sight was gradually restored. —Mrs. Fannie Walburn, 75, was burn- ed to death in the destruction of her farm house, near Montgomery carly Mon- day morning. Clay Deitrick, a relative who resided with the aged woman, was awakened by her calls from downstairs, but was unable to go to her aid because of the dense smoke. He climbed over a porch roof and jumped to the ground, spraining his ankle. He limped over a half a mile for aid, but when neighbors reached the house it was a mass of flames. The body was discovered later in the morning, badly charred. —In order to curtail running expenses of the Brookville hospital, members of the staff of the institution have taken a voluntary cut of fifteen per cent in their wages for the coming year. The financial report submitted at a recent meeting of the board of directors indicated that the | expenses of the institution exceeded the | revenue on an average of ten dollars a day. When the situation was presented to members of the staff, it was at once | decided to take the wage cut to carry the institution through its present diffi- culties. The wage reduction will effect a saving of approximately twenty-six hundred dollars during the year. —Four members of the Bucknell Uni- versity football team and coach Carl G. Snavely, on Tuesday, volunteered to sub- mit to a blood transfusion operation in an effort to save the life of Professor “James P. Whyte, professor of old Eng- lish and member of the athletic couneil at the university. Professor Whyte is in a serious condition in the Geisinger Memorial hospital, Danville, and his doc- tors desire to build him up for a major operation this week. The four athletes who volunteered their blood are Clark Hinkle, fullback; Louis Mutzel, gur~d and captain of last year's boxing team: Harry Fry, halfback, and Edward L. Nied, tackle. —The identity of the armed bandit who held up and robbed H. 8. Schenck, manager of the Shaffer Stores company in Huntingdon, Wednesday night of last week, still remains a mystery. A check of the loss revealed that the thug ob- tained more than $200 in currency in the robbery. The robbery occurred about 11:30 p. m. while the manager was en- gaged in closing his accounts for the day. He told police officers that a man entered his store in the guise of a cus- | tomer and requested a roll of clothes line. When Schenck stooped over to get the clothes line from a bin, he felt the muzzle of a revolver against his gide. The robber forced him to a ware- house and after gagging and binding him, stole the money. —Contracts have been awarded by the Safe Harbor Water Power corporation for six generators for the new hydro- electric development at Safe Harbor, Lancaster county. Four of the generators will be built by the General Electric company and two by the Westinghouse ‘leads to seizure of power, disregard company. Contracts for the six hy- | for public convenience, cut-throat draulic turbines have already been award- | competition. led. The six units which will constitute Loss of zeal and initiative tends 'inevitably to Government owner- | ship and operation, such as has re- |tarded development of European | utilities. | American railroads have been developed into the world's greatest | system through private ownership. | When the Transportation act was | passed in 1920 the country still | feared the monopoly bogey. Today i the initial installation at Safe Harbor | will have a capacity of 255,000 horse- | power. Provision is being made in the power house now wn#¢« construction for | six additional units, bringing the ul- | timate capacity to half a million horse- | power. Over 2000 men are now at work ion the dam across the Susquehanna at | Safe Harbor. The initial development | at Safe Harbor will involve the invest- | ment of $40,000,000. —_With the death of Kin Hub- We realize that we fare better with The largest vault in the world, which ‘bard the Abe Martin source of clean ‘humor and wise philosophy is elos- | ed forever. | —Penologists recommend ‘“rooms” instead of “cells” in prisons and ' maybe, after all, there's something ‘in a name. ——Revenue statistics recently published show that “the rich are growing richer” whatever happens to the poor. | | -—A good, sharp rebuke of the new Power Commission by Congress | would meet with cordial popular ap- | proval. | ———Germany still protests that | the reparation requirements are too | heavy but she continues to pay. | regulated monopoly than with un- | regulated competition. The difficulty is to retain suffi. | cient private or individual energy land initiative, with adequate regula- | tion by the Government. | If this balance has been main- ‘tained by the proposed four-trunk | merger, the 10-year delay and the |long drawn out moves of the great railway chess game were justified. | ——Having failed to secure need- led funds by borrowing, Soviet Rus- | sia has determined to coin a billion | rubles, That is an easy process of meeting deficiencies if the materials |are availabl ~The health record for the year just ended is the best ever, accord- ing to statistics, but the record on morality is not mentioned. is to be installed in the Bank of Japan | at Tokio and built by the York Safe & | Lock Company, was shipped in part on Tuesday. Half of the huge vault, which weighs 3000 tons, was shipped to Balti- more on a special train of 38 freight cars over the Pennsylvania railroad. The train required two locomotives. The steamship Tokai Maru, of the Japanese Steamship Lines, is enroute to Baltimore and will arrive January 13. She will sail for Japan January 15, carrying no other cargo than the vauit. The other half of the vault will be shipped early in April. Oscar Sch.nidt, Jr.,, of York, an erector for the company, will go to Tokio to supervise the installation opera- tion. He wil be In Tokio for ap- proximately one year, according to an announcement by S. Morry Laucks, pres- ident of the company. The vault Is about 10 feet high, inside measurement, 187 feet long and 83 feet wide. Seven- ten doors and vestibule furnish en- trance.