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PHOTOGRAPH BY MATHILDE WEIL
LEST WE FORGET! The Outlook again publishes this inexpressibly pathetic picture of an American mother and her six children whose lives were lost on the Lusitania, an unarmed merchant ship which was sunk without warning by a German submarine on May 7, 1915. For this irreparable act no atonement has been made. On the occasion of this anniversary, to be observed by commemorative meetings, we reprint this picture as a memorial
AS MR. DAVENPORT FORESEES THE CAMPAIGN
THE DEMOCRATIC SITUATION The Democratic party will attempt to prove, and to a considerable extent will be able to prove, that it has been constructive upon some notable issues left over from long discussion in the past; that it has refused to be driven into war, or even to the brink of war, until every attempt had been made to obtain National honor through peace.
Preparedness without militarism, prosperity without favoritism, peace without dishonor, is to be the Democratic slogan.
And the country will then determine whether on the whole the Democratic party has shown itself fit to rule in the new and greater day of National preparation which is upon us; or whether it is likely to deal with American problems in a timid, halting, and ineffective fashion.
THE REPUBLICAN SITUATION But with the Republican party the case is not so simple. As in 1912, so in 1916 the struggle is on for the soul of the Republican party. . . . The future usefulness and service of that party depends upon the outcome. . . . There is the same tendency as in 1912 to obscure the issue, to lay emphasis upon the tariff and full dinner-pails, “ tried Republicans," and shibboleths generally instead of ideals. . . . But this is the attitude only of a powerful fragment of the Board of Control, ... who do not for a moment represent the attitude of the rank and file nor the best leadership of the Republicans. . . . The Republican party is fighting within itself for its soul, for a policy and a leadership of National altruism and powerful Americanism. Upon the outcome of the struggle depends the question as to whether, as in the days of its origin, it can further aid the Nation to find its own soul.
THE PRE-NOMINATION CAMPAIGN
THE SOUL OF THE NATION FINDING ITSELF
STAFF CORRESPONDENCE BY FREDERICK M. DAVENPORT
THE most trenchant criticism of the man, it is the whole range of the higher and
present Administration at Washing- nobler traits in him that we miss. Now the
ton is that it has not succeeded very national soul is only a concert of individual well in stilling jangling voices, in stirring pro- souls. And when foreign observers say of foundly public intelligence and feeling, in us, and we say of ourselves, that there is in bringing out the best in the soul of the country. the midst of the present world conflict and
Every man is two men. The shrinking world problems no clear, definite soul of the inert, trouble-dreading, habit-bound, narrow- American people, we mean that there is no visioned, provincial qualities of human nature sharp cleavage between the lower and higher exist side by side with the active, fearless, nature of the Nation, that the two are helpfreer, broader instincts of the human spirit. lessly commingled, and that there is as yet These two sets of qualities are in perpetual no magnet powerful enough to separate the conflict. Whether on the average in a coun- iron filings from the dross. No event tragic try one set of qualities or the other is reg- enough, no idea influential enough, no leadernant and controlling depends a great dealership in Government or public opinion powupon the leadership of the country. The erful enough, has as yet appeared. men at the front in government and in pub- In the present difficulties, the millstone lic opinion are heavily responsible for bringing about the neck of Democratic leadership has out the best, less than the best, or the worst been the Bryan element and spirit within the in the majority of average men among the Democratic party. Such an influence is hundred millions of a vigorous people like fitted only for a limited agitation about the Americans.
domestic affairs, and not at all for a firm and When we speak of the lack of soul in a wise and courageous facing of intricate and perilous foreign relations which involve the it is very important to keep the stupid and higher dictates of humanity and of right. inefficient out of this country. We have And between the need of placating the enough of them. But how about keeping Bryan element in Congress and the failure them out of Congress ? instinctively and decisively to understand the And so with the craven attitude with nature of other governments and peoples, respect to the Philippines. We thought we the foreign policy of the Administration has had that fought out in 1900. I suppose the seemed to be feeling its way uncertainly danger of Philippine imperialism is a bogey along, and the soul of the Nation is not of the past. Now the fear seems to be that stirred nor strengthened.
we are straining democratic theory and NaThe National weakness of spirit shows tional stamina by continuing to
by continuing to assume itself in the various humiliating and purely responsibility for our wards in the Pacific. political proposals during the present crisis And that, anyway, our wards do not need us in the Congress of the United States. Of
any more. And even if they do, it is not these the Hay Bill to reorganize the military wise to run the risk of incurring enmities in system of the country is the worst, not only that part of the world. But still, while wc because of its utter lack of vision, but because are letting them go, we will hold on to the it is so palpably connected with stratagems responsibility for a season—a policy shortand spoils. It is one more revelation that sighted, vacillating, compromising, dangerous. the Congress of the United States is either How different from the National vigor and too ignorant or too reckless or too feeble to aspiration which the country for the moment care for honor, efficiency, or country, but felt when the Philippines first came to us. only for a Constitutional theory, a selfish without our seeking. The Government and vote-getting interest, or the exigencies of the the American people together believed then support of a political machine.
that they were members of a race which I am talking about the things that Con- grew great in spirit through service and gress is now working at. It is displaying the responsibility imposed upon us under cirsame narrow vision in its preparation to meet cumstances free from taint of aggression or the immigration overflow after the war.
touch of wrong. There has been a wealth of discussion as to But the time would fail me to speak of the what is going to happen when the war ceases- hostility of the National representatives to the whether capital and labor will profitably flow continuance under public authority of the into the European areas of destruction for the valuable examination, begun under the Taft purpose of rebuilding, or whether there will Commission on Economy and Efficiency, into be a rush of immigration to America to the lax and costly administrative methods of escape intolerable burdens of misery and the Federal Government. And when it taxation. The truth seems to be that we are comes to Federal revenue, where is the cournot likely to get many English or French or age or the insight to tax fearlessly and intelGermans, but very likely to get an increasing ligently the abundant National resources ? multitude from southern Europe, particularly Altogether in this country the States gather from the Balkan States, from Poland and Ga- some twenty-five millions of inheritance taxes licia and Servia. An illiteracy test would artifi- every year from a total wealth of nearly two cially and mechanically restrict this flow, but hundred billions. England, with far less we have not the slightest reason to believe that total wealth, collects easily two hundred millit would separate the superior from the infe- ions from inheritance taxes.
A firm grasp rior, nor clear up the immigration perplexity. of the ordinary principles of taxation, the The country needs a continuous and sufficient lowering of the income minimum, the collecsupply of immigrant labor in the right places. tion by the Federal Government of the entire An expert Federal immigration commission, corporation and inheritance revenues, and working under a reasonable law, with powers the handing back of the larger portion to the of discrimination as to the volume and as to States—these plain, practical hints of the the sort of labor which shall be admitted at men of science seem to be far from the mind any particular period, and as to where it shall or the interest of the Solons of Congress. go, would seem to be indicated by the needs Taxation and retrenchment at Washington of the country and the drift of National prac- are a game of politics and not of finance. tice in other fields. But here again Congress But we cannot put the entire odium of the gives no sign of National vision. Of course degradation of National intelligence and spirit
THE PRE-NOMINATION CAMPAIGN
upon the Congress of the United States. exerted for a united America, for the sympaWhile I am convinced that neither Congress thetic and friendly union of trade and ideals nor political leadership in the country is as with sister states to the south; the firm big as the soul of the American people, I am policing of the feebler and more turbulent likewise convinced that many of the faults populations of Central America for their own which we attribute to the Government are safety as well as ours. The brightest spot our own faults, the faults of the people them- of internationalism on the face of the earth selves. And in a democracy the faults of the has been the Philippines and Cuba. And in people count heavily, especially in matters of making it bright, America has been finding foreign policy.
her soul. Under the present Administration Popular government has never shown itself there have been ominous signs of spiritual extremely capable in foreign affairs. In for- retreat and disaster. The proposed scuttling eign affairs details of negotiation must be of the Philippines, the deliberate discussion known only to the Government, else the of the payment of blackmail to Colombia, negotiations would inevitably fail. They are have been symptoms of the shrinking of the hidden from the people. The people, if they National soul.
National soul. And the slow response of the are to be helpful, must trust their experts spirit of America to the atrocious wrongs implicitly and at the same time follow, ap- committed in Belgium, in Armenia, upon the prove, and control foreign policy in its main high seas, and even at our borders in Mexico, outlines and its final phase.
has been a startling indication of the subnorAmerican democracy neither trusts experts mal beating of the moral impulse. And yet nor exhibits at critical moments a keen sense all the time there have been signs of life and of National honor or of international right. hope. And we have to take this into account, among It may seem fantastic to speak of the other things, in judging President Wilson Platt Amendment as a method of the Nafrom the Lusitania to the Sussex, He has tional soul. The Platt Amendment is a tether been under the burden of the home democ- by which the United States allows weaker racy as well as of foreign affairs. With his peoples, for whose conduct she feels herself own conception of his Presidential mission it responsible, the greatest measure of selfhas seemed to him that he had to feel his government and independence up to a cerway out of the darkness and move slowly tain point of disorder and danger to ourand cautiously while the unprepared United selves and themselves. We have applied the States was finding its own soul.
full principle of it in Cuba, and the nub of it It seems to me that the history of our in the case of the police protectorate actually times in the United States might be written enforced in Haiti, in San Domingo, and from the standpoint of the spirit of the now in Nicaragua where we have secured American people groping its way out of the option upon another canal route. The prison. For a quarter of a century it has few American marines in the capital of slowly been creeping towards the light in its Nicaragua have for more than a year been domestic policies, casting off the fetters of the source of the most profound peace that private interest and extending the bounds of the little“ Republic" ever knew. And the Nathe common welfare. A more difficult task tional sense, not of " manifest destiny," but appears to be the finding itself in its adjust- of duty, has grown stronger as we have ment to foreign relations. Always difficult observed the service which these simple for a democracy, it is unusually difficult for police protectorates have been able to accomthe United States. A hundred years of the plish. fixed policy of isolation has dulled the inter- But the sense of National responsibility national sense. And yet, when we come to has paused and paltered at the gates of think of it, we were introduced to the path Mexico. I am not now criticising the method of internationalism under the most favorable of the Government of the United States in juspices. The little war which we waged dealing with Mexican affairs. I am talking unselfishly with Spain revealed to the Nation about the people of the United States and clearly how its soul might find itself in the why they have faltered. Mexico is a country international realm—the use of power for the of great area, with a large and proud popuservice of weaker peoples; the use of effi- lation having a national ego developed out ciency for the development of weaker peo- of all proportion to any human quality or ples; the altruism of the great Republic advancement in civilization and self-control.
And from the standpoint of any necessary of the war to the world ? Germany divined military aggression we are a feeble folk. aright the deplorable political and industrial And successive groups of native Mexicans and military weaknesses of Russia, England, are seeking to establish order out of chaos. and France. But Germany is beating her Let them work at it. It is the line of least blind efficiency out against the rock of the resistance, the easier way. That has been spiritual reserve of Russia, England, and the way a large part of the country has France. And it is the spiritual reserve which looked at it. But already, with respect to
is the final test of the fitness of a people to Mexico, the soul of the Nation is finding survive. itself, and unless the group about Carranza The soul of the American people is in speedily show themselves worthy of the con- process of finding itself. And, if it finds itself fidence of the loan markets of the world and in time, it is going to demand, even in the otherwise capable of rule, the Platt Amend- present campaign, the election of a government, it seems to me, is as sure to be ap- ment and a leadership as big as its own soul. plied to Mexico as it ever was to Cuba. That It is a heavy task the two political parties is the temper of the slowly rising conscious- have on hand. And they are so unfitted by ness of the American people.
tradition and practice to deal with it! It is The soul of the Nation is finding itself. entirely clear how the Democratic party and We are a great, cumbersome democracy, politicians will meet it. They must meet it working at cross-purposes, busy about many on the record of the acts of the Democratic matters. Many newspapers and politicians President and the Democratic Congress. And have deluded us so often that we have the country will determine and decide upon ceased listening to them for a long time after Democratic policy and leadership by what the they begin to cry “Wolf !” and “Peril !" party has accomplished in these critical years, But the giant is stirring in his sleep. There and not by what it promises. Contrary to the is a great spiritual reserve in the country, as predictions of the Republicans, the Democratic there was at the time of the Civil War. Then party will attempt to prove, and to a considerwe were a Nation under arms, and when we able extent will be able to prove, that it has were first organized we had no great military been constructive upon some notable issues captains. But we stumbled on until we left over from long discussion in the past; created our own great captains. And as the that it has refused to be driven into war, or war progressed, the army developed a soul even to the brink of war, until every attempt of its own.
And the time came when, if had been made to obtain National honor every general had suddenly been shot in
through peace. Preparedness without militarbattle, new leaders would have been born in ism, prosperity without favoritism, peace withan hour and the soul of that army, like John out dishonor, is to be the Democratic slogan. Brown's spirit, would have gone marching on. And the country will then determine whether, This is what America is capable of in a on the whole, the Democratic party has shown crisis, whether of peace or of war.
So now itself fit to rule in the new and greater day the Nation has taken its stand soberly and of National preparation which is upon us ; unitedly behind the President, or in front of whether it gives promise of facing the fresh him, in the final declaration to Germany and issue of a broad Americanism in a spirit and the world that we think of ourselves by the a fashion other than timid, halting, and inefforce of circumstances as “the responsible fective. spokesmen of the rights of humanity, and But with the Republican party the case is that we cannot remain silent while those not so simple. As in 1912, so in 1916 the rights seem in process of being swept utterly struggle is on for the soul of the Republican away in the maelstrom.” The American party. And there is not so much certainty people are slowly girding their loins for any that the soul of the Republican party will alternative or for any great adventure. find itself as that the soul of the Nation will
That is what this political campaign is find itself. But the future usefulness and really coming to be all about—the mobilization service of that party depend upon the outof the spiritual reserve of the people of the come. On the one hand, there is the same United States, the revitalization of the coun- tendency as in 1912 to obscure the issue, try through the breaking up of the deeps of to lay the emphasis upon tariffs and full National consciousness by the impulse of the dinner-pails and “ tried Republicans ” and terrible war. Is not this the inner meaning shibboleths generally, instead of upon ideals.