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No. 5 

Socialism and Government 


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No. 5 

Socialism and Government 

Working Programs and Records of 
Socialists in Office 





Copyright, 1916, by Appeal to Reason 

Girard, Kansas 


The pamphlets in this series are composed, in the main, of 
selections from the published work of Socialist writers, mostly 
of the present day. In some of them, particularly "Socialist 
Documents" and "Socialism and Government," the writings used 
are mainly of collective, rather than individual authorship; 
while the Historical Sketch is the composition of the editor. 

To the selections given, the editor has added explanatory 
and connecting paragraphs, welding the fragments into a co- 
herent whole. The aim is the massing together in concise and 
systematic form, of what has been most clearly and pertinently 
said, either by individual Socialist writers or by committees 
speaking for the party as a whole, on all of the main phases of 

In their finished form they might, with some appropriate- 
ness, be termed mosaics: each pamphlet is an arrangement of 
parts from many sources according to a unitary design. Most of 
the separate pieces are, however, in the best sense classics: 
they are expressions of Socialist thought which, by general ap- 
proval, have won authoritative rank. A classic, according 
to James Russell Lowell, is of itself "something neither ancient 
nor modern"; even the most recent writing may be considered 
classic if, for the mood it depicts or the thought it frames, it 
unites matter and style into an expression of approved merit. 

For the choice of selections the editor i.q alone responsible. 
Doubtless for some of the subjects treated another editor 
would have chosen differently. The difficulty indeed has been 
in deciding what to omit; for the mass of Socialist literature 
contains much that may be rightly called classic which ob- 
viously could not have been included in these brief volumes. 

The pamphlets in the series are as follows: 
1. The Elements of Socialism. 
"■> 2. The Science of Socialism. 

3. Socialism: A Historical Sketch. 

4. Socialist Documents. 

5. Socialism and Government. 

6. Questions and Answers. 

7. Socialism and Organized Labor. 

8. Socialism and the Farmer. 

9. Socialism and Social Reform. 

10. The Tactics of Socialism. 

11. The Socialist Appeal. 

12. Socialism in Verse. 


number and title page 

Preface 4 

I. In Europe 5 

Review of Socialist Achievements 5 

Notes on Socialist Activities 8 

11. In the United States Congress 13 

Record of Victor L. Berger 13 

Record of Meyer London 22 

III. In the State Legislatures 25 

Socialist Legislators 25 

Socialist State Program 29 

The Record— 1907-13 32 

The Sessions of 1915 36 

Future Possibilities 41 

IV. In the Municipalities 43 

Socialist Municipal Program 43 

Socialist Records in Oflfice 46 

Summary of Work Done 46 

Summaries by Leading Cities 53 

Milwaukee 53 

Schenectady 55. 

Hamilton 57 

Butte 59 

Berkeley 62 

VI. A Municipal Review 63 


This pamphlet, from its restricted size, can of course 
give no more than an outline of what has been accom- 
plished by Socialists in office. There is no space to record 
in detail the many achievements of the European Social- 
ists, won through long years of steady endeavor. Except, 
therefore, for two brief summaries regarding the work 
in other countries, the pamphlet is devoted wholly to the 
United States. Those who want more extended informa- 
tion regarding the activities of European Socialists may 
consult Robert Hunter's "Socialists at Work" and Morris 
Hillquit's "Socialism in Theory and Practice." 

The record given is the record of a slow but steady 
pressure exerted by the working class upon the rulers of 
present-day society. In its outcome it means the gradual 
transformation of society into a co-operative common- 
wealth. For those who can see the attainment of Social- 
ism only by means of a revolutionary cataclysm, there 
is perhaps no better reminder than the words of Wilhelm 
Liebknecht : 

We are not going to attain Socialism at one bound. 
The transition is going on all the time, and the important 
thing for us, in this explanation, is not to paint a picture 
of the future — which in any case would be useless labor — 
but to forecast a practical program for the immediate 
period to formulate and justify measures that shall 
serve as aids to the new Socialist birth. 

W. J. G. 




The following concise review of the direct achievements 
of the Socialist parties in Europe and of the indirect results 
of their activities appears in Mr. Hillquit's "Socialism in The- 
ory and Practice"* (pp. 190-94) : 


The practical political activity of the Socialist parties 
is, on the whole, of quite recent date. The Social Demo- 
crats of Germany entered on their first electoral cam- 
paign as far back as 1867, but for almost tv^enty years 
they stood practically alone in the field of Socialist poli- 
tics. Sporadic attempts at electoral campaigns were made 
by Socialists in Holland beginning in 1880, in Italy in 
1882 and in Denmark in 1884; but as well-organized and 
continuous political parties the Socialists entered the 
political arena in France in 1885, in Denmark in 1889, in 
Sweden in 1890, in Italy in 1892, in Spain in 1893, in Bel- 
gium in 1894, and finally in Austria, Holland and Norway 
as late as 1897. In the United States the Socialists nomi- 
nated their first national ticket in 1892. In some of these 
countries the Socialists had occasionally engaged in 
municipal and other minor campaigns somewhat earlier, 
but on the whole it may be said that the average period 
of practical and systematic Socialist activity in politics 
does not exceed twenty years. 

This comparatively short space of time has by no 
means been barren of positive results for the Socialist 
movement and the working class. 

The parliamentary achievements of the Socialist par- 

'New York: The Macmillan Company. 


Appeal Socialist Classics 

ties may be divided into such reforms and measures as are 
directly traceable to Socialist initiative and such as are 
the indirect results of Socialist politics. 

The reforms of the former class are few and rather 
insignificant, as must naturally be expected in view of the 
fact that the Socialists as yet constitute but a small 
minority in every parliament, and a minority generally 
hostile to the rest of the house. Moreover, in several 
European parliaments, notably in the German Diet, a 
fixed and rather large number of seconders is required 
before a proposed measure may be considered by the 
house; and in most of such countries the Socialist par- 
liamentary groups have not been, until recent years, 
numerous enough to comply with such requirements, so 
that their activity was of necessity limited to the support 
or opposition of measures introduced by the government 
or by other parties. 

Summing up the positive achievements of Social Dem- 
ocratic politics in the German Diet, Herman Molkenbuhr 
claims some direct Socialist victories in all the domains of 
parliamentary legislation dealing with workingmen's in- 
surance, factory laws, industrial courts, the civil code, 
protective tariff and taxation. Taking the existing Ger- 
man law on accident insurance as an illustration, he 
shows, by an elaborate analysis of the origin of its various 
provisions, that no less than twelve of its most substan- 
tial amendments have been adopted on motion of the 
Social Democratic party, while the party of the center, 
which habitually poses as the champion of the working 
class, has only two of such amendments to its credit, the 
party of the government and the liberal union each one, 
the other parties having contributed nothing at all to the 
amelioration of this important law. 

In France the Socialist deputies have initiated or 
secured the passage of several favorable measures, among 
them laws reducing the hours of labor of government em- 
ployes, extending the powers of municipalities, suppress- 
ing private employment bureaus, and several important 

Socialism and Government 

amendments to the accident insurance law. In Denmark 
the Socialists in parliament have, after persistent efforts 
of twenty years, recently succeeded in securing the pas- 
sage of a law which makes it incumbent on the govern- 
ment and municipalities to grant considerable subsidies 
to labor organizations formed for the support of their 
unemployed members. In Italy, Belgium and Switzerland 
the Socialist representatives in parliament have at one 
time or another succeeded in securing the passage of 
several measures of social reform, while in Sweden, Nor- 
way and Austria the Socialist parties have within recent 
years secured largely extended suffrage. 

Far more important, however, than the laws directly 
initiated in parliaments by Socialist representatives are 
those numerous measures of social legislation which have 
within the last two decades been passed by the parlia- 
ments of almost all civilized countries as the indirect 
but nevertheless legitimate result of Socialist political 
action. These measures are as a rule taken by the liberal 
or even conservative parties bodily or with some changes 
from the programs formulated by the Socialist parties, and 
are fathered as original proposals of the opponents of 
Socialism in order to destroy the effectiveness of the 
Socialist propaganda. Far-seeing statesmen sometimes 
meet such "issues" with apparent cheerfulness, even be- 
fore they have acquired the force of popular demands, 
and shortsighted governments grant them grudgingly 
when the general cry for them has practically become 
irresistible. Prince Bismarck, as was pointed out in a 
previous chapter, frankly avowed that the object of the 
broad social legislation inaugurated by him was primarily 
to avert a popular revolution, and the greater part of the 
social and political reforms inaugurated since by the 
several parliaments of Europe clearly owe their origin 
to similar considerations. In those countries of Europe 
in which the Socialist movement has attained such polit- 
ical strength as to cause alarm to the parties of the 
dominant classes, the latter regularly shape their policies 

Appeal Socialist Classics 

with special reference to their probable effect on the 
Socialist vote, and the "stealing of the Socialist thunder" 
is one of their favorite maneuvers, especially in time of 
approaching electoral campaigns. Chancellor Von Bue- 
low has publicly admitted this fact for Germany, and it 
is more than an accident that the golden era of social 
legislation in all other countries coincides quite closely 
with the period of practical Socialist politics; that coun- 
tries in which political Socialism is weak, as, for instance, 
the United States, are the most backward in the domain 
of social legislation, and that the few labor laws occa- 
sionally passed by the American state legislatures are 
so often nullified by court decisions. 


A fragmentary summary of Socialist activities in certain 
of the European nations, made up from various sources, appears 
in the Socialist Campaign Book for 1914: 


In France, Millerand, as the Socialist minister of com- 
merce and industry, in 1899, succeeded in getting passed 
a law that reduced the hours of labor from 12, 14 and 16 
per day to 10 in factories where men, women and children 
were employed, and in the postal and telegraph depart- 
ments under his immediate control he instituted the eight- 
hour day. He secured legal protection for trades unions 
and extended their functions; created a standing labor 
committee or council to aid in formulating labor legisla- 
tion; and instituted a system of free employment bureaus. 
A good view of these measures is given by Von Vollmar 
in "Modern Socialism," chapter XI. 

The work of Millerand was not satisfactory to the 
Socialist party on other matters, but there is no question 
about the value of his work in the line of legislation for 
the working classes. He placed France at the head in 
this respect and opened a new era of labor legislation. 

Socialism and Government 


By 1901 the movement in Italy had grown so strong 
that the Zanardelli-Giolitti government depended upon 
the Socialist vote. With even this much of power, Signor 
Turati, representing the Socialists, was instrumental in 
inaugurating a policy which is said to have changed the 
face of Italian legislation ("Recent Social Legislation in 
Italy," Econ. Jour., Sept., 1903, p. 430). Among the meas- 
ures enacted may be mentioned: (1) Weekly payment 
of wages; (2) rigid regulations for the safety and sanitary 
condition of working places; (3) one-day rest in seven; 
(4) all wages to be paid in coin — not in bills of credit, 
scrip or other devices; (5) employes to be entitled to pay 
during periods of sickness under certain conditions, and 
(6) a good child labor law — better than the present laws 
in most of our states in America. 

In addition to this, the most progressive measures 
were passed providing for the municipalization of all the 
usual utilities — light, water, gas, street car service, tele- 
phone, etc., and besides many unique features. Among 
them may be mentioned municipal pharmacies, both for 
the general sale of drugs and for gratuitous distribution 
to the poor where necessary, much as is proposed by most 
municipal platforms of the Socialists. Model bakeries 
are provided for, expressly to prevent the rise in the price 
of bread. And, most unusual of all, the cities are to be 
allowed to establish a public service to conduct funerals 
gratuitously for the poor. 

The fact that the legislation of Italy has been so 
decidedly influenced by the Socialists while they are only 
a minority party shows how profoundly and how con- 
structively Socialism will affect the conditions when given 
full power. 


In England recently Socialism seems to have assumed 
a new and rather unique phase. In 1900 a federation 

10 Appeal Socialist Classics 

was formed, made up of trade unions, trade councils, the 
Independent Labor party (Socialist), the Fabian society 
(Socialist), and co-operative societies. This federation 
was naturally and logically socialistic in its entire make- 
up. As a result the power of Socialism was at once tre- 
mendously increased in England. (The Labor party now 
has 39 representatives in parliament, the most of them So- 

The manifesto which these representatives offered at 
the opening of their parliamentary work sets forth in 
strong, unmistakable terms the constructive program they 
propose to follow. They say: "A party in Parliament 
can be held together, kept vital only by a policy — not by 
vague aspirations and foggy ideas — but by a policy. A 
policy implies more than a desire to attain definite legis- 
lation. It implies strategy, criticism, initiative and op- 
position. These, to be effective, must be based upon some 
principle, either of attack or of defense, or both. Labor 
today is essentially aggressive. The object of its hostil- 
ity is capitalistic monopoly in all its forms, the winning 
for those who work of every penny which now goes into 
the pockets of those who idle." 

Following the usual method, these Socialists have 
attacked the capitalistic system on several different lines: 
(1) They have introduced measures for a vast extension 
of public improvements in order to give work to the great 
numbers of unemployed. Slums are to be cleared away, 
model dwellings to be built, land cleared and prepared for 
use and waste places reforested. (2) Poor relief must at 
once be enormously increased. They quote acknowledged 
authorities to show that 5,000,000 men, women and chil- 
dren are living in England at or below the poverty line. 
A minimum of relief is to be guaranteed to these. (3) 
Old age pensions are to be established and extended. (4) 
The agricultural system of the country is to be developed 
in order to open opportunities for labor — a system of 
agricultural education and lectures established; commu- 
nities empowered to buy lands and lease them to small 

Socialism and Government 11 

holders to make advances of stock, seeds, etc., on reason- 
able terms — in short, to do all that can be done to open 
agricultural life and resources to the people. (5) The 
liquor traffic is to be socialized. This question is attacked 
with the same directness and vigor as all the others. 
"The drink trade," they say, "is too profitable and too 
perilous to be left to the heedless greed of private enter- 
prise." (6) And, finally, in answer to the question which 
is frantically raised by the capitalists as to where the 
money is coming from for all this extravagant policy, they 
are just as definite, frank and direct. "The only possi- 
ble policy is to deliberately tax the rich, especially those 
who live on wealth which they do not earn. For thus, 
and thus only, can we reduce the burden of the poor." 
("The Socialist Program," Atlantic, vol. 98, 651-7.) 


In Belgium we have perhaps the most striking and 
instructive form of constructive Socialist organization 
of all. The characteristic feature here is the co-ordina- 
tion of all the various forces of labor. Here more suc- 
cessfully than in any nation at the present time the So- 
cialists have organized and synthesized the power of the 
working class. 

In America we have a strong trades union movement. 
But it lacks the power that comes with aggressive, inde- 
pendent political action. The political arm is weak. It 
is only beginning to be developed. In Germany, in indeed 
nearly all of the European countries, we have the trades 
union movement working together with the Socialist party 
as its political expression. This greatly strengthens the 
labor position. But in Belgium we have added to all of 
this the organization and co-ordination also of the eco- 
nomic or purchasing power of the working class. The So- 
cialists of this country have organized one of the best 
and most successful co-operative movements in the world. 
They have built vast co-operative stores, halls, restaurants, 
cafes — true "temples of the people," as they are called. 

12 Appeal Socialist Classics 

They handle millions in volume of business; they save 
millions to the working class; they employ thousands of 
workers at good wages; they turn over vast sums to the 
Socialist party; they house the labor unions and furnisli 
them funds when on strike or out of work and give their 
members an old-age pension. Unquestionably the Bel- 
gian Socialists have built up the most effective and pow- 
erful constructive working class organization in the world. 
("Modern Socialism," Chap. XX, an address of E. Anseele, 
founder of the "Voruit" of Ghent, Belgium, to the Social- 
ists of France; one of the most remarkable utterances 
upon this form of Socialist organization. Also "Social 
Unrest," Chap. XL) 


In Denmark the Socialist group in Parliament are 
making a nard fight to reduce the age required before one 
can vote from thirty to twenty-une years. It is a fight 
for universal suffrage.* 

In Finland they have secured the passage of a new 
school law making elementary education compulsory, high 
schools free, food and clothes free to all public school 
pupils in need of them. They secured also an old-age pen- 
sion law, and a provision that special students shall be 
sent to foreign countries to study social, economic and 
labor conditions. (New York Worker, Jan. 4, 1908.) 

*0n June 5. 1915, the new constitutional law extending the 
suffrage was signed by King Christian, to become operative in 
a year's time. It increases the franchise and institutes woman 
suffrage. It lowers the age for voting for the Folkething (Lower 
House) from 30 to 25 in the course of five years. It will then mean 
universal suffrage for all men and women of 25 years and over. 

At present the Folkething consists of 114 members, represent- 
ing the same number of constituencies. The Folkething receives 
an addition of 26 members elected proportionally. The old com- 
plicated voting for the Landsthing, or Upper House, is abolished. 
The new Landsthing consists of 72 members; 54 to be elected 
on an indirect system of proportional representation, and 18 to 
be chosen by the old Landsthing before its dissolution. The King 
ceases to appoint members to the Upper House. 

Women are eligible to vote and sit in both houses. 

Socialism and Government 13 


Though the Socialist party has been entitled, by reason of 
the number of votes polled, to representation in each Congress 
since and including that elected in 1900, it has so far elected 
but two representatives. Its vote of 901,062 in November, 1912, 
entitled it to twenty-six representatives, but the crude and 
fradulent system of representation which now prevails totally 
excluded the party from a share in the membership of Con- 

The first Socialist elected was Victor L. Berger, from the 
Fifth district of Wisconsin, in 1910. The second was Meyer 
London, elected from the Twelfth district of New York, in 1914, 
and re-elected in 1916. 

Berger took his seat at the convening of the special session 
of the Sixty-second Congress on April 4, 1911. The following 
summary of his work was prepared in the summer of 1912 and 
has been printed in the Socialist Campaign Book for 1912 and 


In judging the work of Congressman Berger, the fact 
that he was only one member out of a total of 394 in the 
house of representatives, should be considered. 

And this was not the only limitation by any means. 
There were not only 393 representatives against him, there 
were 96 senators also absolutely opposed to him on all vital 
and economic questions. 

It was practically five hundred against one. For while 
there are a few representatives in the house of representa- 
tives who are trades unionists and are supposed to be rep- 
resentatives of the working class, yet in their voting, their 
arguments and in their way of thinking, they differ in no 
way from the representatives of the old capitalistic parties. 


1. Resolution to Investigate the Lawrence Strike Sit- 
uation. — In the latter part of 1911 and the early part of 

14 Socialist Classics 

1912 there occurred among the textile workers in Law- 
rence, Mass., a most serious and remarkable strike. When 
the appalling conditions, the starvation wages, the brutal 
treatment of men, women and little children and the wanton 
killing of a woman by the police and militia became known 
to Congressman Berger, he at once took the matter up in 
congress. He introduced a resolution to have a commission 
investigate "The Relations of the American Woolen Com- 
pany to the Strike of Its Operatives at Lawrence, Mass." 

The resolution was referred to the committee on rules 
and before this committee hearings were held that in them- 
selves served as an investigation. They brougnt out in an 
official way the condition in Lawrence. The hearings were 
published in File 464 of a special report known as Document 
No. 671, on "The Strike at Lawrence, Mass." 

It is doubtful whether when the facts brought out by 
this investigation shall have had their full effects there has 
ever been a more effective effort in awakening the con- 
science of our nation. 

For half a century our protective tariff politicians have 
urged a high tariff on the ground of its alleged benefits to 
labor. Here is the man to put their proposition to a final 
test. And he did it in the case of the woolen industries in 
such a way as to leave not an iota of doubt or question 
remaining. . . . 

The facts brought out by the investigation of the ap- 
palling conditions of the textile workers at Lawrence, 
and further facts presented by Congressman Berger in his 
speeches and debates on the various tariff measures, served 
to rip the mask off this monstrous hypocrisy of our govern- 
ment's policy and leave it completely exposed. 

He said frankly, "I am no free trader. I hold that 
under the present capitalist system of industry a sudden 
and violent reduction of tariff schedules would in almost 
every case be disastrous to the workers. 

"Here is a case, however, where one of the most highly 

Socialism and Government 15 

protected industries in America, which begs its tariff pro- 
tection from congress on the ground of benefiting the wage 
earners, deliberately forces down wages to the starvation 
point." And on that ground he maintained his stand for 
reduction of the tariff, especially on the highly protected 
industries, while not advocating immediate free trade. 

2. Eight-Hour Day for All Labor Employed on Gov- 
ernment Contract Work. 

3. A General Old Age Pension Bill. — The fact that 
many of the progressive countries already have some such 
legislation as this tended to greatly strengthen Mr. Ber- 
ger's position. The introduction of the bill started a wide- 
spread and mostly favorable discussion of the whole subject. 

4. The Right of Postal Employes of Government to 
Organize and Petition Congress. — The public must be the 
model employer. A government in the control of capitalistic 
interests might take over public utilities, suppress the 
right of organization, free speech and petition and thus 
become the most tyrannous of labor oppressions. This ten- 
dency has manifested itself already on the public railways 
in foreign countries where the right of the workers to 
organize and strike has been violently suppressed. And as 
a matter of fact these rights are being denied here in 

They must be maintained at all hazards. They are 
vital to the cause of labor and fundamental to the purpose 
of Socialism. 

5. A Bill to Protect the Women Wage Workers in the 
District of Columbia. — This provides for an eight-hour 
day, for one day's rest in each week, prohibiting the em- 
ployment of girls under eighteen years of age before seven 
in the morning or after six at night. 

6. Protest Against Starvation Wages. — In a speech in 
the house, January 14, 1912, Mr. Berger denounced the 
democratic appropriation bill for the District of Columbia 
because of the extremely low wages provided for some of 

16 Appeal Socialist Classics 

the public employes. Some were getting as low as $240 a 

A similar protest was made in a speech on March 4, 
1912, against the low wages paid to the employes in the 
department of agriculture, 

7. For Better Conditions for the Workers. — In the 
bill introduced by Mr. Berger for a new postoffice building 
at Waukesha, Wis., the spirit of the Socialist legislation is 
again illustrated. Careful provision was made in the draft- 
ing of the bill for the comfort, health and convenience of 
the workers. 

Other measures providing for the comfort and con- 
venience of the workers were introduced. An amendment 
to pending legislation was introduced by Mr. Berger on 
May 1, ]912, to permit postal employes to use stools for at 
least two hours a day. And the amendment came near car- 
rying. The vote stood 35 for to 55 against. 

Mr. Berger's effort to secure relief for the mail carriers 
from their hot and heavy uniforms in summer was even 
more successful. In this case he took the matter up directly 
with the postoffice department, and secured a modification 
of the hitherto strict orders. 

8. Providing an Automatic Reward for Faithful Serv- 
ice. — On April 19, 1912, Mr. Berger introduced an amend- 
ment providing for the automatic promotion of all postal 
employes from the $1,100 grade to the $1,200 grade. This 
amendment also came very near to success, the vote being 
33 for to 45 against. 

9. The One Day's Rest in Seven. — Besides other labor 
measures in which one day's rest in seven was sought for 
the employes in the District of Columbia, Mr. Berger took 
up the matter of providing a six-day week for all govern- 
ment employes. The matter came up in connection with an 
investigation which Berger made, revealing the fact that 
many of the employes, especially in the treasury depart- 
ment, were compelled to work seven days in the week. 

Socialism and Government 17 

10. Helping in Labor Troubles and Disputes. — One of 
the first things Mr. Berger did was to introduce a resolu- 
tion demanding an investigation of the McNamara ease. 
He also introduced a bill to prevent kidnaping of labor offi- 

11. To Solve the Problem of the Unemployed. — The 
features of Congressman Berger's bill are as follows: (a) 
The United States government is to issue and loan money 
to county, city and town governments, enabling them to 
inaugurate public improvements, (b) These loans are to 
pay interest at one-half per cent per annum, and shall be 
redeemed in twenty equal annual installments, (c) Loans 
to be secured by special bonds issued by the local govern- 
ments, (d) Upon this basis the secretary of the treasury 
shall issue a special currency to be known as "Public Im- 
provement Notes" to be loaned to the local governments. 
Each year the secretary shall withdraw from circulation 
and destroy an amount of this currency equal to the value 
of the bonds redeemed, (e) And finally the bill provided 
that the work undertaken under these loans shall be car- 
ried out with an eight-hour work day and at not less than 
the prevailing union rate of wages. 


The Socialist solution of the trust problem is outlined 
in the bill presented in congress by Mr. Berger on Decem- 
ber 4, 1911. 

The plan proposes that whenever any corporation or 
combination reaches a point where it controls forty per cent 
of the output or service in its line, then it shall be acquired, 
owned and operated by the United States government for 
the benefit of the whole people. 

In this connection special mention should be made of 
Congressman Berger's bill for the government ownership 
of the railroads, telephone, telegraph and express companies. 

There are five features in the Socialist program upon 
this point: (1) Direct legislation including the recall; 

18 Appeal Socialist Classics 

(2) the abolition of the United States senate; (3) limita- 
tion of the power of the supreme court; (4) universal adult 
(including woman's) suffrage and (5) a national constitu- 
tional convention. 

A moment's consideration on the part of any student 
of our forms of government will show that each of these 
steps constitutes an essential part of the struggle for 
democracy. None can be omitted. All should be co-ordi- 
nated. And this is exactly what the Socialist does. 

1. Direct Legislation. — The initiative, referendum 
and the recall are today pretty popular ideas among the 

But most people do not know that these ideas in their 
modern concrete form originated with the Socialist move- 
ment and have not only been preached but practiced by the 
Socialists and the workers in their organizations for half 
a century. 

So when Congressman Berger introduced in the United 
States congress an amendment to the constitution providing 
for the introduction of the broad principle of direct legisla- 
tion into the federal system of government, he was only 
completing in concrete form the universal program of So- 
cialism for the establishment of political democracy. 

2. Abolish the United States Senate. — Any number of 
studies of the history of the United States senate as well 
as all the bitter experiences of recent years establishes the 
fact that the United States senate not only serves no pur- 
pose in the direction of democracy, but is actually a hin- 
drance to democracy — a "check," as it is called. 

Our reformers have been trying to remedy this by 
having the senators elected directly by the people. How- 
ever, this so-called remedy is only superficial. Abolish the 

3. Limit the Power of the Supreme Court. — Socialist 
Congressman Berger has pointed out the way. 

Socialism and Government 19 

When he introduced his bill for old age pensions he 
appended a section as follows: "That in accordance with 
section a, article 3, of the constitution, and the precedent 
established by the act of congress passed over the presi- 
dent's veto, March 27, 1868, the exercise of jurisdiction by 
any of the federal courts upon the validity of this act is 
hereby expressly forbidden." 

The precedent referred to was a case relative to certain 
of the reconstruction laws which grew out of the civil war. 
The supreme court had in that case been expressly pro- 
hibited from passing upon the validity of the acts. The 
supreme court itself held unanimously at that time the pro- 
hibition was valid and declined to pass on the constitution- 
ality of the laws in question. 

Thus an entirely new principle is established. The 
power of the supreme court to annul legislation exists only 
so long as congress consents to or permits it. 

The remedy is simply for congress to expressly pro- 
hibit it. 

4. Woman Suffrage. — Socialists the world over have 
always felt that there could be no such thing as democracy 
where one-half of the adult population are denied the ballot. 
As a matter of course, therefore, they have always fought 
for the ballot for woman. 

In accord with this general position of the Socialist 
movement Congressman Berger presented in congress a 
resolution for a constitutional amendment providing for 
woman suffrage. This he later backed up by a monster 
petition, probably the largest petition ever presented to 
congress, signed by 109,582 individuals and by organiza- 
tions representing approximately 7,500 more — a total of 

5. A National Convention. — As a final means of cor- 
recting quickly the many defects of our present national 
constitution and thus making progress more easy and effec- 
tive, it is also proposed that a national constitutional con- 
vention be called. 

20 Appeal Socialist Classics 


1. The Municipal Government of Washington, D. C. — 
Mr. Berger was made a member of the committee to investi- 
gate misrule and mismanagement of the local administra- 
tion of Washington. The result of the investigation that 
followed was a number of measures intended to improve the 
condition of the city industrially as well as in a civic way. 

2. The Case of Judge Hanford. — Another matter that 
called forth the aggressive action of Congressman Berger 
was the case of the misconduct of Federal Judge Hanford 
of Seattle, Wash. 

Immediately upon hearing of his official misconduct 
Congressman Berger demanded his impeachment and 
removal. He charged the judge with an unlawful usurpa- 
tion of power in annuling the naturalization papers of one 
Leonard Oleson on the frivolous charge that he was a So- 
cialist; with rendering corrupt decisions; with habitual 
drunkenness and with issuing fraudulent injunctions. 

That these charges were well founded was shown by 
subsequent events. The judge resigned in an evident at- 
tempt to escape impeachment. 


Among the first duties of Congressman Berger was 
the presentation of a resolution asking the president of the 
United States to withdraw the troops from the Mexican 
border. Another measure was a resolution to terminate the 
treaty of 1887 between the United States and Russia. 

In a carefully prepared statement given out to the 
press Mr. Berger showed how the Socialist movement in 
foreign countries had already prevented several wars and 
how, as their power increased, they would soon be in a posi- 
tion to prevent and certainly would prevent all wars of 
mere capitalistic aggression. 

There are two terrific forces that the Socialists will 
use — the power of their representatives in the parliaments 

Socialism and Government 21 

of the various nations, already numerous enough in many 
countries to hold the balance of power, and the power of the 
organized workers of a nation using the weapons of the 
general strike. 


Other bills, introduced at the subsequent session, provided 
for an investigation of the garment workers' strike in New 
York; for the taking over of the New York, New Haven and 
Hartford railway, for an investigation of the censorship exer- 
cised by the Postoffice Department and for a condemnation and 
seizure of the railroads in case of a strike by the locomotive fire- 
men. A later summary of his work, published in the National 
Socialist of April 12, 1913, included the following paragraphs: 


On a few of his bills Berger secured a hearing before 
the house committees. These hearings were given much 
publicity and often accomplished the same end desired by 
a full investigation. This is particularly true of the hear- 
ing before the house committee on rules on Berger's reso- 
lution to investigate the Lawrence strike. It is now gen- 
erally conceded that the publicity given to the strike and 
the fear of the wool barons in regard to the protective 
tariff forced an immediate settlement of that protracted 

The impeachment of Hanford was followed by an 
investigation by a special committee. During the height 
of that investigation, Hanford resigned. Berger alone was 
responsible for the impeachment of Hanford. 

The Socialist congressman never failed to vote for 
really progressive and labor measures whenever they came 
up for passage. He also appeared before house committees 
and made speeches urging them to report favorably progres- 
sive bills and report unfavorably reactionary measures. 

Probably the strongest feature of Berger's work was 
his participating in the consideration of legislation pending 
before the house. He seldom missed an opportunity to pre- 

22 Appeal Socialist Classics 

sent to the house and to the country the Socialist position 
on important questions of the day. He made speeches on 
the conditions of labor, governmental issues, as well as 
giving to the house occasional lectures on Socialism and 
arguments in favor of his ovv^n measures. More than three 
million copies of Berger's speeches were circulated through- 
out the land under his frank. 

In addition to his work in the house, Berger used his 
influence as a congressman before the federal departments 
whenever the interests of labor and humanity demanded. 
On five occasions Berger interceded in behalf of political 
refugees who were detained at Ellis Island threatened with 
deportation. In each case Berger succeeded in getting them 
admitted into this country. 

Employes of federal departments knew Berger as their 
champion, for he never rested until he adjusted their griev- 
ances in their favor. In several instances Berger succeeded 
in securing pardons for persons who were unjustly sen- 
tenced to prison. 


For two years the Socialist party and the working class of 
the United States have been represented in the House of Rep- 
resentatives by one man — Meyer London, of the Twelfth New 
York district. London during this period has been the minority 
party of the lower chamber. His was the one voice heard 
against the voting of funds for the famous "Get Villa" expedi- 
tion into Mexico. He voted against the big preparedness pro- 
gram, along with a few timid pacifists and members who wanted 
a still larger program of defense. He always voted and raised 
his voice for labor in those halls where labor's voice is rarely 
if ever heard. 

"Alone in Congress" might be the title of a book by Meyer 
London, for he has worked with little help from even the so- 
called "labor group" in the House. Yet he has not been alone, 
for outside the walls of Congress were hundreds of thousands of 
men, women and children, whom he really represented, and who 
stood behind him, giving him moral support and power. 

London's bare record shows two years of hard activity. 
During his term he has held membership in three committees — 
Labor, Mines and Expenditures in the Department of Labor. 

Socialism and Government 23 

He spoke in debate some thirty times, and answered to eighty- 
four roll calls. 

Here is the barest summary of the record: 


Introduced Dec. 6, 1915, House Joint Resolution, calling upon 
the President to call a conference of neutral nations to offer 
mediation to the warring powers, and outlining principles on 
which a durable peace should be based. 

Took this resolution up with President Wilson, in company 
with Hillquit and Maurer of the Socialist National Executive 
Committee on January 24. 

Conducted hearings on it, February 23 and 24, before the 
House Foreign Affairs Committee. Twenty national organiza- 
tions sent spokesmen to the hearing to support it. 

Secured its introduction in the Senate by Senator Lane of 


Introduced, February 19, 1916, House Joint Resolution 159, 
"For the appointment of a commission to prepare and recom- 
mend a plan for the establishment of a national insurance fund, 
and for the mitigation of the evil of unemployment." Social 
insurance plan. 

Conducted hearing on this measure May 6 and May 11, be- 
fore the House Committee on Labor. 

Secured approval of Labor Committee for a modified form 
of this measure, which he reported on behalf of the committee 
as H. J. Res. 250 on July 1, 1916. Provides for a Commission 
on Social Insurance, to investigate and recommend to Congress 
as to a national fund for old age pensions, sickness insurance 
and unemployment insurance. 


Made speeches, introduced and defended amendments to 
bills, and voted in Committee of the Whole and in the House, 
against all phases of military and naval expansion program. 

Voted alone against the appropriation for the expedition 
into Mexico. 

Cast one of the two votes registered against drafting the 
National Guard for service on or beyond the Mexican border. 

Cast the only anti-militarist vote against the Hay military 
bill. Prevented, as a result of this fact, the agreement of the 
House to the proposal of 250,000 men for the regular army, 
adopted in the Senate. 

24 Appeal Socialist Classics 

Spoke and voted for immediate independence for the Phil- 

Made, almost single-handed, the fight against disfranchise- 
ment of 165,000 workers in Porto Rico. As a result, the Senate 
committtee recommended that this disfranchisement be post- 
poned for ten years. 

Made only speech of the session to House urging direct 
government development and operation of hydro-electric power. 

Voted for government armor-plant and nitrate-plant amend- 
ments to the navy and army bills respectively, but voted against 
bills as a whole. 

Spoke and voted for child labor bill, and offered amendment 
to workmen's compensation bill to make it cover occupational 

Spoke and voted for income and inheritance tax provisions 
of the revenue bill. Spoke and voted against retaining tariff 
on sugar. Urged federal taxation of unearned increment of 
land values. 

Spoke and voted against Borland "rider," increasing the 
hours of labor of 30,000 government clerks in the District of 

Spoke and voted against stop-watch "efficiency" systems 
in government shops. Supported Nolan $3 minimum wage bill 
for government employes. 

Spoke and voted against literacy test in immigration bill. 

Urged President Wilson to use his influence with European 
governments to secure civil rights for Jews. 

Voted for government-owned and government-operated ship- 
ping lines. 

Took up with the several administrative departments during 
the year, the defense of the right of registration of voters in 
Oklahoma, of free speech in Ohio, of free political expression 
in the Mare Island Navy Yard, of residence of Japanese radicals 
in Seattle and San Francisco when threatened with abduction 
to Japan, etc. 


Delivered personal reports to his constituents in New York 
City at intervals, explaining the work of Congress. 

Circulated printed speeches on "Preparedness," "Child 
Labor," "National Honor," "Increased Military Establishment," 
"The Villa Expedition," "United States Commission on Indus- 
trial Relations," "Immigration," and "Social Insurance." 

Introduced and defended resolution declaring that Congress 
would not approve war begun in defense of right of Americans 
to travel on armed merchantmen of the belligerents. 

Socialism and Government 25 




As has been the case with the National Congress, so also 
with the State legislative bodies, the Socialists have never had 
the representation to which their vote entitled them. Never- 
theless, they have Avon some representation from the beginning, 
except in the election of 1903, and since 1908 it has been greatly 

The following list gives the names of all Socialist State 
legislators elected from the formation in 1898 of the Social Dem- 
ocratic party (which in 1901 united with the Rochester faction 
of the Socialist Labor party to form the Socialist party) to 1915 
inclusive. Most legislators are elected biennially. In Massa- 
chusetts and Rhode Island, however, they are elected annually, 
while in Wisconsin and Nevada representatives are elected 
biennially and senators quadrennially. 

The dates given in the sub-headings are in each case the 
year or years of service; the election was in the previous year: 

1899— Two Members. 

Massachusetts — 

James F. Carey, Haverhill. 
Louis M. Scates, Haverhill. 

1900— Two Members. 

Massachusetts — 

James F. Carey, Haverhill. 
Frederic O. MacCartney, Rockland. 

1901— Two Members. 

Massachu s etts — 

James F. Carey, Haverhill. 
Frederic 0. MacCartney, Rockland. 

1902— Three Members. 

Massachusetts — 

James F. Carey, Haverhill. 
Frederic O. MacCartney, Rockland. 
W. S. Ransden, Brockton. 

1903— Two Members. 

Massachusetts — 

James F. Carey, Haverhill. 

Frederic O. MacCartney, Rockland (died in office). 

26 Appeal Socialist Classics 

1905-6— Eight Members. 
Florida — 

A. J. Pettigrew, Manatee county. 
Illinois — 

Joseph Ambrose, Chicago. 

Andrew Olson, Chicago. 
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) — 

Jacob Rummel (Senator). 

W. J. Aldridge. 

E. J. Berner. 

Fred Brockhausen. 

August Strehlow. 

1907-08— Six Members. 
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) — 

Jacob Rummel (Senator) elected in 1904. 

W. J. Aldridge. 

E. J, Berner. 

Fred Brockhausen. 

Carl D. Thompson. 

Frank J. Weber. 

1909-10— Five Members. 

Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1908 and 1909) 
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) — 

Winfield R. Gaylord (Senator). 
E. J. Berner. 
Fred Brockhausen. 
Frank J. Weber. 

1911-12— Twenty Members. 

Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1910 and 1911). 

Minnesota — 

Nels S. Hillman, Two Harbors. 
New York — 

Herbert M. Merrill, Schenectady. 
North Dakota — 

Wesley Fassett, Dunseith. 
Pennsylvania — 

James H. Maurer, Reading. 
Rhode Island — 

James P. Reid, Olneyville (elected in 1911). 
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) — 

Winfield R. Gaylord (Senator, elected 1908). 

Gabriel Zophy (Senator). 

E. J. Berner. 

Socialism and Government 27 

Max Binner. 
Fred Brockhausen. 
W. J. Gilboy. 
Jacob Hahn. 
Arthur Kahn. 
Michael Katzban. 

E. H. Kiefer. 
George Klenzendorf. 

F. B. Metcalfe. 
J. H. Vint. 
Frank J. Weber. 

1913-14 — Twenty-one Members. 
California — 

C. W. Kingsley, Los Angeles. 
Illinois (all from Chicago) — 

H. W. Harris. 

C. M. Madsen. 

Joseph M. Mason. 

Seymour Stedman. 
Kansas — 

Fred W. Stanton (Senator), Mulberry. 

Everett Miller, Scammon. 

Ben F. Wilson, Girard. 

Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1912 and 1918). 
Minnesota — 

Nels S. Hillman, Two Harbors. 
Montana — 

Charles H. Conner, Eureka. 
Nevada — 

Martin J. Scanlan (Senator), Tonopah. 

I. F. Davis, Tonopah. 
Washington — 

W. H. Kingery, Shelton. 
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) — 

Gabriel Zophy (Senator, elected in 1910). 

Martin Gorecki. 

E. H. Kiefer. 

Carl Minkley. 

William L. Smith. 

J. H. Vint. 

E. H. Zinn. 

(The total is 21. Stanton, however, was ousted by the Kansas 
Senate, for solely partisan reasons, after the courts had affirmed 
his election. Harris, of Illinois, after serving most of his term, 
lost his seat on a recount of the votes, while Davis, of Nevada, was 
expelled from the party for voting against its mandates.) 

28 Appeal Socialist Classics 

1915-16 — Thirty-one Members. 

California — 

George W. Downing, Los Angeles. 

L. A. Spengler, Los Angeles. 
Idaho — 

E. W. Bowman (Senator), Council, Adams County. 
Illinois — 

C. M. Madsen, Chicago. 

Joseph M. Mason, Chicago. 
Kansas — 

George D. Brewer, Girard. 
Massachusetts — 

Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1914 and 1915). 
Minnesota — 

A. 0. Devoid, Minneapolis. 

J. W. Woodfill, Two Harbors. 
Montana — 

Leslie A. Bechtel, Silver Bow County. 

Alexander Mackel, Silver Bow County. 
New Mexico — 

W. C. Tharp, Clovis, Curry County. 
Nevada — 

M. J. Scanlan (Senator, elected in 1912), Tonopak. 

C. A. Steele, Yerington. 
Oklahoma — 

G. E. Wilson (Senator), Cestos. 

S. W. Hill, Roll. 

C. H. Ingham, Ringwood. 

D. S. Kirkpatrick, Selling. 
T. H. McLemore, Elk City. 
N. D. Pritchett, Snyder. 

Pennsylvania — 

James H. Maurer, Reading. 

J. Alexander Bcvan, Tooele. 
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) — 

Louis A. Arnold (Senator). 

H. (X Kent. 

F. B. Metcalfe. 
Carl Minkley. 
William L. Smith. 
George Tews. 

J. H. Vint. 
Frank J. Weber. 

E. H. Zinn. 

Socialism and Government 29 


The Socialist National Convention, held at Indianapolis, 
May 10-16, 1912, unanimously approved the following outline 
of a State program, presented by a committee composed of 
Carl D. Thompson, Chairman; Anna A. Maley, John C. Kennedy, 
Thos. M. Todd, W. W. Farmer, Geo. W. Downing, Marguerite 
Prevey, Ernest Berger and R. E. Dooley: 


Socialism cannot be carried into full effect while the 
Socialist party is a minority party. Nor can it be inaug- 
urated in any single city. Furthermore, so long as national 
and state legislatures and particularly the courts are in 
control of the capitalist class, a municipal administration, 
even though absolutely controlled by Socialists, will be 
hampered, crippled and restricted in every way possible. 

We maintain that the evils of the present system will be 
removed only when the working class wholly abolish private 
ownership in the social means of production, collectively 
assume the management of the industries and operate them 
for use and not for profit, for the benefit of all and not for 
the enrichment of a privileged class. In this the Socialist 
party stands alone in the political field. 

But the Socialist party also believes that the evils of 
the modern system may be materially relieved and their 
final disappearance may be hastened by the introduction of 
social, political and economic measures which have the 
effect of bettering the lives, strengthening the position of 
the workers and curbing the power and domination of the 

The Socialist party therefore supports the struggles of 
the working class against the exploitation and oppression of 
the capitalist class, and is vitally concerned in the efl^ciency 
of the parliamentary and administrative means for the 
fighting of the class struggle. 


1. An eight-hour day, trades union scale and minimum 
wage for both sexes. 

2. Legalization of the right to strike, picket and boycott. 

30 Appeal Socialist Classics 

3. Abolition of the injunction as a means of breaking 
strikes and the establishment of trial by jury in all labor dis- 

4. Prohibition of the use of the military and the police 
power to break strikes. 

5. Prohibition of the employment of private detective 
agencies and police forces in labor disputes. 

6. The repeal of all military law which surrenders the 
power of the governor over the militia to the federal authorities. 

7. Requirement that in time of labor disputes advertise- 
ments for help published by employers shall contain notice of the 
fact that such labor dispute exists. Provision to be made for 
the prosecution of persons who shall employ workers without 
informing them that such labor trouble exists. 

8. Prohibition of employment of children under the age of 
sixteen, compulsory education, and the pensioning of widows 
with minor children where such provision is necessary. 

9. The organization of state employment agencies and 
rigid control of private agencies. 

10. Suitable safeguards and sanitary regulations in all 
occupations with ample provision for frequent and effective in- 
spection of places of employment, machinery and appliances. 

11. Old age pensions, sick benefits and accident insurance 
to be established. 

12. Workingmen's compensation laws to be carefully drawn 
to protect labor. 

Home rule for cities. 


1. Compulsory education of both sexes up to the age of 
sixteen years with adequate provision for further courses where 

2. Establishment of vocational and continuation schools 
and manual training for both sexes. 

3. Free text books for teachers and pupils; uniform text 
books on all subjects to be furnished free to public schools. 

4. Physical training through systematic courses of gsrm- 
nastics and open air exercises. Open air schools and play- 


1. A graduated income tax; wages and salaries up to 
$2,000 to be exempt. 

2. Graduated inheritance tax. 

3. All land held for speculation and all land not occupied 
or used by the owners to be taxed up to full rental value. 

Socialism and Government 31 


1. For the purpose of developing and preserving the natural 
resources of the state and offering additional opportunities of 
labor to the unemployed, the states shall undertake a compre- 
hensive system of public works, such as the building of roads, 
canals, and the reclamation and irrigation of land. All forests, 
mineral lands, water ways and natural resources now owned by 
the states to be conserved and kept for public use. 

2. The contract system shall be abolished in all public 
works, such work to be done by the state directly, all labor to 
be employed not more than eight hours per day at trade union 
wages and under the best possible working conditions. 


1. The legislature of the state to consist of one house of 

2. The initiative, referendum and recall to be enacted. 


1. Unrestricted political rights for men and women. 

2. Resident qualification for all elections not to exceed 
90 days. 

8. The right to vote, not to be contingent upon the pay- 
ment of any taxes, either in money or labor. 


1. Extension of the state agricultural and experimental 
farms for crop culture, for the distribution of improved seeds, 
for the development of fertilizers, for the design and intro- 
duction of the best types of farm machinery, and for the en- 
couragement of the breeding of superior tjrpes of stock. 

2. All land owned by the state to be retained, and other 
land brought into public ownership and use by reclamation, 
purchase, condemnation, taxation or otherwise; such land to be 
organized into socially operated farms for the conduct of col- 
lective agricultural enterprises. 

3. Landlords to assess their own land, the state reserving 
the right to purchase such lands at the assessed value. 

4. State insurance against pestilence, disease of animals 
and plants and against natural calamities. 


1. The present unscientific and brutal method of treating 
criminal persons, defectives and delinquents to be replaced by 

32 Appeal Socialist Classics 

modern scientific and humane methods. This to include the 
abolition of all death penalties, of the prison contract system, 
of isolated confinement. Penal institutions to be located in 
rural localities with adequate healthful open air employment 
and humane treatment. 

THE RECORD, 1907-1913. 

No detailed study of the earlier work of Socialists in office 
has been made. The excellent review prepared by Ethelwyn 
Mills and published (1914) as a pamphlet by the National Office 
under the title, "Legislative Program of the Socialist Party," 
gives detailed information regai'ding the work done in the 
sessions of 1913 and a summary, with particular reference to 
the record of the Wisconsin Socialists, of the 895 Socialist 
measures introduced (of which 141 were passed) in the various 
legislatures between 1907 and 1913, inclusive. Of the previous 
period it says: "It has been impossible to gather complete 
data on the work of the early representatives of the party in 
the various states, but copies of the bills they introduced and 
such records as we can discover show that they stood for the 
usual Socialist measures, such as the initiative and referendum, 
woman suffrage, etc., for improvement of labor conditions, for 
public ownership of public utilities and other measures leading 
toward the Socialist goal." 

A National Office leaflet published in 1914 summarizes the 
review mentioned above. Many of the paragraphs relate to 
measures passed in more than one state. 

Unfortunately, the names of the states in which these 
measures were enacted into law are specified in only about half 
the cases. 


The Socialists in the state legislatures of this country 
have accomplished three things: 

First — They have actually succeeded in putting into 
the statute books of the various states some 141 different 

Second — They have been indirectly instrumental and 
assisted in putting on many more. 

Third — They have prepared with great care and com- 
pleteness the definite, concrete legislative measures that 
make up the Socialist program. 

Thus the specific measures by which the principles of 

Socialism and Government 33 

Socialism may be applied have been reduced to the cold 
letter of the law and deposited in the official records of a 
dozen different states and, we may add, in congress of the 
United States as well. 


Last winter (1913) there were 21 Socialists in nine 
different state legislatures. 

That's a good start, isn't it? We had seven in Wiscon- 
sin, four in Illinois, three in Kansas, two in Nevada and 
one each in California, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana 
and Washington. 

In fact, the Socialists have had here and there repre- 
sentatives in the state legislatures since 1899. 

In judging of their work and the possibilities in this 
direction, we must remember that in every case the Social- 
ists were in a hopeless minority — one against 100, or maybe 
three against 150. And yet they have put things through. 

You really could not expect one or two lone Socialists 
in a state legislature of 150 men to accomplish very much. 
Especially as the rest of the 150 are for the most part 
steeped and pickled in capitalism and owned, body and 
soul, by the monopolies and trusts, or else so uninformed on 
economic questions as to be easy tools of the capitalist 

Yet, in spite of all that, these Socialists accomplished 
something. They got things through — and it is no small 
record of actual achievement. 


Of course, we do not claim all the credit for passing 
these laws. None of them could have been passed without 
the votes of others than Socialists — it is true. But these 
measures, advanced and urged and pushed through by the 
Socialists, show the practical and constructive nature of 
the Socialist movement. 

The following are the bills introduced by Socialists 

34 Appeal Socialist Classics 

and passed by the state legislatures of one or the other 
of the states in which the Socialists had representatives, 
viz: California, Illinois, Kansas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, 
Nevada, Washington and Wisconsin: 


1. Eight-hour day on public contract work (Wisconsin). 

2. Ten-hour law for women, 55 hours per week; and in 
night work not more than eight hours, nor more than 48 hours 
per week. 

3. Better protection on dangerous machinery in factories. 

4. Requiring blowers on all emery wheels used in metal 
polishing trades. 

5. Full-crew bill, requiring railways to furnish sufficient 
men on all trains to adequately handle the work (Wisconsin). 

6. Bath houses for miners (Kansas). 

7. Requiring employers, in advertising for workmen in 
time of strike, to mention the fact of the strike being on in their 
advertisments (Minnesota and Wisconsin). 

8. Better protection of health and safety of miners (Kan- 

9. Regulating sale and delivery of black powder to miners 

10. Workmen's compensation act. 

11. Protection of workingmen in the construction of build- 
ings (Minnesota). 

12. Better ventilation in factories. 

13. Eight-hour day on public contracts (Wisconsin). 

14. Making false statement in securing employes a misde- 
meanor, punishable by fine and imprisonment (Minnesota). 

15. Licensing of stationary engineers in the interests of 
public safety, as well as workingmen. 

16. Factory doors must be unlocked during working hours. 

17. Requiring employers to install and maintain safety 

18. Improved conditions of children working in street 
trades, as newsboys, etc. 

19. Requiring safety appliances on corn shredders, which" 
have been particularly deadly to farm labor. 

20. Requiring the keeping of records of injuries to em- 

21. Prohibiting overcrowding of factories and requiring 
certain safety appliances. 

22. Child labor — several measures improving conditions. 

23. Prohibiting the use of injunctions in the case of labor 
troubles (Wisconsin). 

Socialism and Government tS 

24. Defining tuberculosis as a communicable disease so as 
to bring it within the statistics of the state health department, 
tuberculosis being regarded by the Socialists as an occupational 
disease; this measure opens the way for an adequate compen- 
sation law (Montana). 

25. Requiring employers to reduce the number of hours of 
labor of children between 14 and 16, in proportion to the num- 
ber of hours spent in attendance at continuation schools, where 
such exist. 

26. Sunday closing of stores (except groceries and meat 
markets), releasing clerks and other employes from Sunday 


1. Partial initiative and referendum; joint resolution call- 
ing for constitutional amendment empowering legislature to 
voluntarily submit measures for popular approval. 

2. Initiative and referendum in municipalities. 

3. Recall of elected officials in municipalities. 

4. Resolution passed by the state assembly of Illinois ex- 
pressing sympathy for the Belgian suffrage strike. 

5. Making election day a half holiday. 


1. Home rule for cities. Several measures passed. Meas- 
ure similar to that drawn by Socialists passed in Illinois. 

2. Excess condemnation; granting cities the right to buy 
and sell real estate in excess of that required for immediate 
public purposes (Wisconsin). 

3. Giving cities the right to build ice plants. 

4. Providing for the appointment of a city forester. 

5. Giving cities the right to erect comfort stations. 

6. Providing for the abatement of the smoke nuisance. 

7. Giving cities the right to build repair docks. 


1. School lunches, giving cities the right to provide (Mas- 

2. Compulsory attendance at schools (Nevada). 

3. Minimum wage for teachers (Wisconsin). 

4. Free night schools (Kansas). 

5. Compulsory education of illiterate minors (Wisconsin). 


A number of measures making the securing of justice 
through the courts cheaper and easier for the workingmen. 

36 Appeal Socialist Classics 

1. Raising the amount of damages that may be awarded 
in cases of employes killed by accident from $5,000 to $10,000 

2. Eliminating the requirement of security bond in case 
of damage suit against cities. 


1. Mothers' pension law, passed in a modified form (Mas- 

2. Provision for better care of neglected children in Nevada. 

3. Old age pensions were approved by measures passed 
in Kansas and Wisconsin. In the former state it was a memorial 
addressed to Congress and in the latter it provides for an in- 
vestigation of the subject. 

4. State life insurance. Wisconsin is now in the life insur- 
ance business. 

5. Taxation. Twelve bills were introduced and passed in 
Wisconsin readjusting the basis of taxation to the full valua- 

6. Pensions for the blind. 

7. A law providing for the proper organization and con- 
duct of co-operative enterprises. 

8. Public ownership of railways; a measure introduced by 
the Socialists in the Minnesota legislature, authorizing Cook 
county, of that state, to build a railway. 

9. Loans to farmers; a joint resolution passed in the Wis- 
consin legislature petitioning Congress to permit loans to farm- 
ers of 30 per cent of the postal savings deposits. 

10. Resolution urging government ownership of coal mines 
(passed Massachusetts House). 


No summary has yet been made of the work of the So- 
cialist members in the legislative sessions of 1915. The follow- 
ing notes of the work done in several of the legislatures are 
made up from articles published in the Appeal to Reason, 
American Socialist and California Social-Democrat. The note 
regarding Senator Bowman of Idaho is condensed from a brief 
article published in Pearson's Magazine for July, 1915: 


The one Socialist senator and five representatives in 
the Oklahoma legislature took an active part in the legis- 
lative work, but although they aided in defeating several 

Socialism and Government 87 

measures, they were not successful in passing any of their 
own. Among the more important measures introduced by 
them were the following: 

House bill providing for the renting of state land to land- 
less farmers, rent to cease when total amount paid equals value 
of land; right of continuous occupancy to be vested in tenant 
or heirs conditioned on their continued occupancy; title to land 
to remain vested in the state; title to improvements vested in 

House bill providing for the state to engage in the insur- 
ance business. 

House bill requiring the payment of one thousand dollars 
to the dependent or dependents of any person legally executed 
within the state. 

House resolution memorializing Congi*ess to relieve the 
condition of the unemployed. 

House bill providing the state ownership of the banking 

House joint resolution initiating constitutional amendment 
granting women right of suffrage. 

House joint resolution initiating constitutional amendment 
repealing veto power of the governor. 

House joint resolution initiating constitutional amendment 
denying supreme court power to declare unconstitutional laws 
adopted by the people under initiative and referendum. 

House joint resolution initiating constitutional amendment 
reducing mileage for members of legislature to actual travel- 
ing expenses. 

House joint resolution initiating constitutional amendment 
abolishing power of legislature to amend or repeal any law 
adopted by the people under initiative and referendum. 

House joint resolution initiating constitutional amendment 
abolishing the Senate. 


The two Socialist members, George W. Downing and 
Lewis A. Spengler, both of Los Angeles, of the California 
assembly, introduced forty-seven measures, of which seven- 
teen were brought to a vote and four passed. Five resolu- 
tions and one bill passed the assembly but were defeated in 
the senate. Eight bills more or less similar to those intro- 
duced by the Socialists were also enacted into law. 

Of the four successful measures, one amended the 

38 Appeal Socialist Classics 

exemption laws so as to include the materials of a work- 
man, and another amended the election laws so as to per- 
mit a citizen moving from one precinct to another in the 
same county and within three days of an election to vote in 
his former precinct. The unsuccessful measures covered a 
wide range of labor and social reforms in accord with the 
Socialist platform. Both representatives made highly 
creditable records for arduous and conscientious devotion to 


On the request of the committee of the railroad 
brotherhoods Senator M. J. Scanlan was made a member 
of the committee on labor. He resubmitted the bills, a list 
of which is given below, which he had introduced two years 
before. The second of these became a law, while the third, 
seventh, eleventh and fifteenth passed the senate but were 
defeated in the assembly: 

1. Increasing compensation for accidents from 50 per 
cent to 60 per cent. Reducing waiting period from 14 days to 
two days. Providing for free medical treatment. 

2. Providing for semi-monthly pay-day. 

3. Compelling mine inspector to post notice of condition 
of mine. 

4. Providing for safety of employes working on high- 
power electric lines. 

5. Providing for redemption of property under tax sales 
in two years. 

6. Abolishing capital punishment. 

7. Prohibiting inaccurate meters or charging more than 
the actual amount consumed of water, gas, or electricity. 

8. Providing for universal eight-hour day. 

9. Entitling poor persons to carry cases in court without 
putting up costs. 

10. Enabling persons without means to carry cases to 
Supreme Court. 

11. Requiring mines to be ventilated so as to keep tem- 
perature below 85 degrees. 

12. Repeal of all poll-tax laws. 

13. Prohibiting the employment of armed men by private 
persons or corporations. 

Socialism and Government 39 

14. Fixing maximum of six hours' work in mines where 
temperature exceeds 85 degrees. 

15. Appropriating fund to enable Board of Pardons to in- 
vestigate cases of public interest. 

16. Repealing poll-tax section of constitution. 

17. Repealing veto power of the Governor. 


The one Socialist member of the Idaho legislature, 
Senator Earl Wayland Bowman, succeeded in forcing the 
passage of an employment act of the utmost importance. It 
is known as the "Emergency Employment Law," and 
ordains that the county commissioners must provide work 
for those who seek it. The applicant must be a citizen 
(male or female, with six months' residence in the state), 
must have been in the county for ninety days and must not 
be the possessor of more than $1,000 worth of negotiable 
property. On his making oath that he cannot obtain other 
employment, the county commissioners must employ him, 
either on road work or other useful service to the county, 
for a period of not more than sixty days in any fiscal year. 

One who refuses to do the work assigned him or her is 
suspended from the privileges of the law for one week; on 
a second refusal the suspension is for one year. The expense 
of the law is borne half and half by the county and the state. 
The act became effective on May 1, 1915. 


Representative James H. Maurer, who is serving his 
second (though not continuous) term, was kept busy in 
combatting the many measures put forward by the reaction, 
which is now in almost supreme control in that state. He 
was successful in obtaining the defeat by a large majority 
of a bill to increase the state constabulary; of two bills 
pressed by the Merchants' Association for the garnishment 
of workingmen's wages, and of attempts on the part of the 
Manufacturers' Association to mutilate the child labor and 
workmen's compensation laws. He was further successful 

40 Appeal Socialist Classics 

in obtaining the passage of a law requiring fifty additional 
factory inspectors. Including several measures which he 
induced others to introduce for him, he submitted sixteen 
important bills and four resolutions. Most of these were 
defeated or buried, but he was able to incorporate, by 
amendments, certain parts of them in other bills which 
became laws. 


Representatives Alexander Mackel and Leslie Bechtel, 
both of Butte, were the only Socialist members of the Mon- 
tana legislature. None of their bills were successful, 
according to a summary of their work published in the 
Appeal to Reason, but they aided in defeating several 
vicious corporation measures. Their own bills were de- 
feated or buried in committee. Measures to prevent the 
employment of gunmen, the coercion of union men and sim- 
ilar defensive labor measures were introduced without 
success, and the Socialists finally decided to center their 
efforts on defeating bills proposed by reactionary repre- 

Two bills instigated by the corporations and defeated 
by the Socialist representatives were one permitting 
physicians to testify concerning injuries to workingmen 
without the consent of the patients, and one requiring a 
workingman suing a corporation for damages to make pub- 
lic his contract with his attorney. It is at present illegal 
for a Montana physician to testify regarding the condition 
of a patient unless he first obtains his patient's consent; 
this inconveniences the corporations in their work of side- 
tracking justice, as injured workmen are generally taken 
to the company hospital for treatment and the perjured 
testimony of the company doctor, if the present law were 
repealed, might be used to evade damage claims. The sec- 
ond bill, proposing to make workingmen publish their 
attorney's contract when suing corporations, was designed 
to prejudice these suits in the eyes of claim juries. Both 

Socialism and Government 41 

bills, if passed, would have rendered it more difficult for 
injured workingmen to collect commensurate compensation 
from corporations. 


In Utah Representative J. Alex. Bevan, the only Social- 
ist member, devoted most of his time in successfully oppos- 
ing vicious measures — particularly a bill restoring a ten- 
hour work day in certain classes of mines and a bill making 
it a fine and jail sentence to trespass on railroad property. 
In Illinois Representatives Madsen and Mason, both serv- 
ing their second terms, continued their active and highly 
creditable service for the workers. In spite of the reac- 
tionary element in control, both the Socialists have good 
committee assignments. Madsen has been for both terms 
a member of the important committee on industrial affairs 
and is also on the committee on education, while Mason is 
on the committee on charities and corrections. 



As noted above, the Socialists have succeeded in secur- 
ing the passage of 141 different state legislative measures. 
This much must be definitely credited to the direct party 
efforts. But in adition to that there are numerous meas- 
ures whose passage is unquestionably due to the persistent 
agitation of the Socialists in the legislative bodies, and 
m»ore particularly to the menace of their steadily growing 
vote and increasing number of representatives elected. This 
indirect influence, it is, of course, impossible to estimate. 
That it is great and increasing is evident. It constitutes 
one of the important elements in the power of the Socialist 
party. Bismarck in Germany frankly admitted that a very 
large part of the progressive social legislation of his coun- 
try was due directly to the growing power of the Socialist 

42 Appeal Socialist Classics 

Such concessions are often sops thrown out by the 
capitalistic and reform movements in politics in a vain 
effort to stop the onrush of Socialism. They are a constant 
testimony to the strength of the Socialist party, and evi- 
dence that its policies are obtaining recognition. 

If, with such hopeless minorities in legislative bodies 
as the party has so far had, such results follow, then the 
faith of the Socialist party in the future possibilities of 
this work is in every way justified. If, as in Wisconsin, 
a half dozen or a dozen Socialists in the state legislature 
of 133 members come out of a session with 67 successful 
measures to their credit; if 41 Socialists, serving in all 68 
terms, in the 48 legislatures of the United States, have 141 
successful measures to their credit; if, as in California, the 
development of the Socialist party and the crystallizing of 
Socialist sentiment is followed by the passage of a half- 
hundred more or less important labor and Socialistic meas- 
ures — then surely the future of the Socialist movement is 

It has only to maintain the steady growth that has 
characterized it every year since the beginning, and two 
inevitable results will follow: First, the opposing forces 
in capitalism will be compelled to grant or permit increasing 
concessions, until they cannot concede more without giving 
up the citadel to the Socialists ; and in that process. Social- 
ism is certain to gain at every step of the way. Second, 
with the growth of the party, its number of representatives 
in legislative bodies will increase, until at length the power 
of Socialism cannot longer be met with a policy of con- 
cession or compromise, and the final issue will be drawn. 
The capitalist politicians, lawmakers and all, will be forced 
into the open fight against the common cause of the people. 
From that point on it cannot be far to the final conflict 
where Socialism and the Socialists will hold the command- 
ing power in the legislative bodies, to pass their measures 
on roll call by sheer count of ayes and noes.* 
*"The Legislative Program of the Socialist Party." 

Socialism and Government 43 



The national convention of 1912 adopted the following pro- 
gram for towns and cities prepared by the same committee that 
formulated the state program. As with the state program, it 
was passed, not as a mandatory rule of action, but as an ad- 
visory list of suggestions — "a basis," in the committee's words, 
"for the activities of Socialist members of state legislatures and 
local administrations": 


(1) Eight-hour day, trade union wages and conditions in 
all public employment and on all contract work done for the 

(2) Old age pensions, accident insurance and sick bene- 
fits to be provided for all public employes. 

(3) Special laws for the protection of men, women and 
children in mercantile, domestic and industrial pursuits. 

(4) Abolition of child labor. 

(5) Police not to be used to break strikes. 

(6) Rigid inspection of factories by local authorities for 
the improvement of sanitary conditions, lighting, ventilating, 
heating and the like. Safety appliances required in all cases to 
protect the worker against dangerous machinery. 

(7) Free employment bureaus to be established in the 
cities to work in co-operation vdth state bureaus. Abolition of 
contract system and direct employment by the city on all public 

(8) Free legal advice. 

(9) The provision of work for the unemployed by the 
erection of model dwellings for workingmen; the paving and 
improvement of streets and alleys and the extension and im- 
provement of parks and playgrounds. 



(1) Home rule for cities; including the right of the city to 
own and operate any and all public utilities; to engage in com- 

44 Appeal Socialist Classics 

mercial enterprises of any and all kinds; the right of excess 
condemnation, both within and outside the city, and the right 
of two or more cities to co-operate in the ownership and man- 
agement of public utilities; the city to have the right of issuing 
bonds for these purposes up to 50 per cent of the assessed val- 
uation or the right to issue mortgage certificates against the 
property acquired, said certificates not to count against the 
bonded indebtedness of the city. 



(1) The city to acquire as rapidly as possible, own and 
operate its public utilities, especially street car systems, light, 
heat and power plants, docks, wharves, etc. 

Among the things which may be owned and operated by 
the city to advantage are slaughter houses, bakeries, milk 
depots, coal and wood yards, ice plants, undertaking establish- 
ments and crematories. 

On all public works, eight-hour day, trade union wages 
and progressive improvement in the condition of labor to be 
established and maintained. 



(1) The introduction of scientific city planning to pro- 
vide for the development of cities along the most sanitary, eco- 
nomic and attractive lines. 

(2) The city to secure the ownership of land, to plat the 
same as to provide for plenty of open space and to erect model 
dwellings thereon to be rented by the municipality at cost. 

(3) Transportation facilities to be maintained with spe- 
cial reference to the prevention of overcrowding in unsanitary 
tenements and the creation of slum districts. 



(1) Inspection of food. 

(2) Sanitary inspection. 

(3) Extension of hospital and free medical treatment. 

(4) Child warfare department, to combat death rate pre- 
aviling, especially in working class sections. 

(5) Special attention to eradication of tuberculosis and 
other contagious diseases. 

(6) System of street toilets and public comfort stations. 

Socialism and Government 45 

(7) Adequate system of public baths, parks, playgrounds 
and gymnasiums. 


(1) Adequate number of teachers so that classes may not 
be too large. 

(2) Retirement fund for teachers. 

(3) Adequate school buildings to be provided and main- 

(4) Ample playgrounds with instructors in charge. 

(5) Free text books and equipment. 

(6) Penny lunches, and where necessary, free meals and 

(7) Medical inspection, including free service in the care 
of eyes, ears, throat, teeth and general health where necssary 
to insure mental efficiency in the educational work, and special 
inspection to protect the schools from contagion. 

(8) Baths and gymnasiums in each school. 

(9) Establishment of vacation schools and adequate night 
schools for adults. 

(10) All school buildings to be open or available for the 
citizens of their respective communities, at any and all times 
and for any purpose desired by the citizens, so long as such use 
does not interfere with the regular school work. All schools to 
serve as centers for social, civic and recreational purposes. 



(1) Socialization of the liquor traffic; the city to oifer as 
substitute for the social features of the saloon, opportunities 
for recreation and amusement, under wholesome conditions. 

(2) Abolition of the restricted vice districts. 



Municipal markets to be established where it is found that 
by this means a reduction may be secured in the cost of the 
necessities of life. 

46 Appeal Socialist Classics 


From its origin the Socialist party won scattered repre- 
sentation in the counties, townships and municipalities, but not 
until 1911 did the number of elected officials assume consider- 
able proportions. In the spring of 1910 the Socialists made 
an almost complete sweep in Milwaukee. In the following fall 
and in the spring and fall of 1911 they scored a number of 
remarkable successes. By the beginning of 1912 they had 
elected 1,039 officials. Reaction and combinations against the 
party reduced this number to 667 in 1913. It is now (summer, 
1915) very much less. 

During their administration of the cities the Socialists 
gave everywhere an unparalleled example of good government. 
The testimony of all fair-minded observers on this matter is 
unanimous. "The Socialists in Milwaukee and Butte," wrote 
Prof. John Graham Brooks, "are giving these cities the best, 
the cleanest and most satisfactory administrations in their his- 
tory, and are repairing the damage wrought by years of the 
old graft machine." Prof. Charles Zueblin has given similar 
testimony. "I am one of those," he wrote, "who believe that — 
and everyone in Milwaukee knows that — the Socialists have 
given the best administration Milwaukee ever had. No more 
honest body of men have ever been in public office in America." 
Nevertheless, by fraud and misrepresentation and by com- 
binations of elements of "respectability" with the exploiting and 
criminal elements in the various municipalities, most of the 
Socialist administrations have for the time been overthrown. 
Perhaps honest government — government by and for the com- 
mon people — is as yet too unfamiliar to the American public 
to be readily acceptable, and thus this transition from a gov- 
ernment of graft and fraud was found to be too sudden and 
abrupt. A further period of education in the need for civic 
honesty and efficiency must precede the return of the Socialist 
administrations to power. 

The achievements of the Socialists in office were sum- 
marized in a pamphlet issued by the national office in the fall 
of 1913: 


Socialism is no longer a mere theory in this country. 

It has been put to the test. 

There are today (September, 1913) Socialist mayors in 
no less than 34 cities in the United States ; more than 250 
Socialist aldermen; 106 other municipal officers, including 

Socialism and Government 47 

attorneys, treasurers, comptrollers, auditors, trustees, 
assessors, etc. 

In none of these cities have the Socialists been in com- 
plete control. Everywhere they have been hampered, 
restricted and obstructed by minorities, by state laws, by 
court injunctions. Yet they have made a record. And it 
is a remarkable record. 

If you have read nothing but the capitalist newspapers, 
you have been told that these Socialist administrations are 
a dismal failure. 

But you want the facts. And the facts are quite dif- 
ferent. They are written in the official records of the cities 
where the Socialists have been in office. There they are, 
black on white. No dodging them. No denying them. 

And we propose to give you a few of these facts — just 
a few of the more important ones. We give you the facts, 
and you can judge for yourself whether the Socialists have 
made good. 

First Fact. The Socialists Have Given the Cities 
Absolutely Honest Administrations. — Whatever else has 
been said against the Socialists and Socialist administra- 
tions, everybody admits that they have been honest. No 
graft, no boodle, no thievery — absolutely honest. 

That means a great deal in this country, where every 
city government is a cesspool of political corruption. 
Shortly before the Socialists went into office in Milwaukee, 
there were 254 indictments against republican and demo- 
cratic officials for grafting, bribery, horse-stealing and 
petty larceny. And there were 23 convictions. There has 
not been a single case of that sort against the Socialists. 

The Socialists put the grafter out of business. In Butte 
they made the city treasurer turn over $6,000 of interest 
on city deposits which had formerly gone into the treasurer's 
pocket. In Schenectady they knocked the graft out of the 
street paving business, and reduced the cost to the city from 
$2.16 per square yard to $1.15. In Milwaukee they did the 

48 Appeal Socialist Classics 

same trick and saved the city over a quarter of a million 
dollars on this item alone. 

And so everywhere the Socialists have given the cities 
honest administrations. 

That is w^hat you w^ant in your city — an honest admin- 
istration. You get it from the Socialists. You don't get 
it from anywhere else. Neither the republican nor the 
democratic party has given American cities honest admin- 
istrations. They have been on the job for fifty years, both 
of them, and matters have grown steadily worse all the 
time. Neither will a combination of the corrupt elements 
in both old parties give you an honest administration — not 
even if they drop their old names and call themselves non- 
partisans or citizens. 

So that is one thing that everybody has to give the 
Socialists credit for. But, after all, that is the very least 
of what the Socialists themselves expect. Honesty, how- 
ever important, is not enough. They must be efficient; 
they must be able to handle the problems. Have the Social- 
ists been efficient? 

Second Fact. The Socialists Have Given the Cities 
Efficient Administrations. — In the matter of business 
methods, the Socialists were the first to officially introduce 
modern, up-to-date office and business methods in municipal 
affairs. The Socialists hadn't been in office a single hour 
in Milwaukee before they reorganized the department of 
public works; they introduced a scientific budget and 
inventory of the city's property, and a method of accounting 
for every item of property in the different departments. 
The purchasing department established by the Socialists 
saved 30 per cent on the city's purchases in Schenectady 
and $40,000 in Milwaukee in a single year. 

These are simply business methods — efficiency and 
economy. And that's what you want. 

Moreover, the Socialists have fully demonstrated their 
ability to handle the other problems of the city. They 
paved more streets, cleaned up more alleys, built more 

Socialism and Government 49 

school houses, collected more taxes from the tax-dodgers, 
exacted more service from the private street car companies, 
gas light and power monopolies than the other parties ever 
tried to do. 

These are all matters of public record — black on white. 
If you have any doubts or want any details and facts, our 
information department in the national office will gladly 
supply you. 

Third Fact. The Socialists Greatly Improved La- 
bor Conditions in Their Cities. — In O'Fallon, 111., they 
raised the wages of the city employes more than 15 per 
cent. In Milwaukee they raised the wages of 580 of the 
common laborers from $1,75 to $2.00 per day. In 
Schenectady they did even better, raising the wages to $2.25. 
In Naugatuck, Conn., they established the eight-hour day. 
This was done in practically every city where the Socialists 
had any considerable number of representatives. Every- 
where the Socialists demand the union label on all city print- 
ing and insist on union-made goods. In Milwaukee they 
raised the wages of library and museum employes; set- 
tled the garment workers' strike peacefully and to the 
advantage of the workers. Mayor Seidel ordered the chief of 
police not to interfere with the rights of the working girls, 
and Socialist City Attorney Hoan refused to prosecute the 
strikers on false and illegal grounds. So they won. 

In St. Mary's, Ohio, the Socialists reduced the hours 
from twelve to eight; raised the firemen's wages from $50 
to $60 per month, and other municipal employes propor- 

In Haverhill, Mass., as far back as 1898, the Socialists 
introduced the principle of direct employment of labor by 
the city on all public work, as far as possible. This extends 
all the benefits of better labor conditions to more of the 
workers — establishes the eight-hour day and raises the 
wages to the trade union standard, 

Schenectady Socialists raised the wages of the teach- 
ers. In Milwaukee they secured extra "offs" for the police. 

50 Appeal Socialist Classics 

arranged to allow the unemployed and homeless to sleep in 
the parks and made a persistent effort to get the city to buy 
land and build homes to be rented to the workers at cost. 
And perhaps most important of all, a rigid factory inspec- 
tion was inaugurated by the health department. Factory 
inspection by Socialists is quite different from just ordi- 
nary factory inspection. The Socialists' inspection got 
results right off. Inside of a few months 55 improved ven- 
tilation systems were installed to supply fresh air to the 
workers while at their tasks in the working places. Eighteen 
suction hoods to draw away gas, smoke and acid fumes 
were put in operation. Fifty-four new toilets installed, 9 
repaired, 30 privy vaults abolished, 65 emery wheels were 
protected, 50 bakeries were changed and improvements 
effected in 133 sweatshops. 

Everywhere swift and aggressive action in improving 
labor conditions. 

Fourth Fact. The Socialists Improved the Public 
Health of the Cities. — To this the Socialists always give 
special attention. The results in a single city are as fol- 
lows: Four hundred and eight fewer cases of scarlet 
fever the first year; 324 fewer cases of diphtheria, 1,044 of 
typhoid, 1,293 of measles, 131 of tuberculosis, etc. ; rigid 
inspection of foods inaugurated; smoke abatement pressed; 
a new isolation hospital opened; a child welfare department 
and a special anti-tuberculosis campaign inaugurated. 

Fifth Fact. The Socialists Improved the Financial 
Condition of the Cities. — It is often claimed that Socialists 
would bankrupt a city and ruin its credit. As a matter of 
fact, the records show that without exception the financial 
conditions of the cities were never so good as while the So- 
cialists were in power. The bonds of the city of Milwaukee 
sold at several points better under the Socialists than ever 

In Butte the Socialists found the city about $1,000,000 
in debt, and put it on a sound basis; in Milwaukee they 
found the city with a $216,000 deficit and left it with a sub- 

Socialism arid Government 51 

stantial surplus. In Berkeley the surplus was $48,000 
more at the end of the first term than when the Socialists 
took hold. 

Moreover, the Socialists make the corporations pay 
their taxes. In Schenectady they boosted the assessments 
of the big fellows $3,600,000; in Anaconda the Socialist 
assessor raised the assessment of the Amalgamated Copper 
company from six millions to sixteen millions and doubled 
the assessments on the railroads. 

Sixth Fact. The Socialists Exacted the Best Possible 
Service from the Corporations. — Haverhill Socialists forced 
the gas company to reduce the price of gas from $1.40 
per thousand feet to 80 cents. They also started the 
fight that compelled the railways to elevate their tracks. 
In St. Mary's they readjusted the water rates and reduced 
the electric light rates from 9 cents per k. w, to 7 cents. The 
Milwaukee Socialists compelled the street car company to 
sprinkle the streets, to pave and repair them betv/een Iheir 
tracks, forced a cross-town service, compelled the company 
in install airbrakes and lifting jacks. They forced the 
reduction of the charges for electricity, compelled the steam 
railroads to do their share of street paving, and carried 
through the fight for track elevation and depression. 

In contrast to the old party administrations that baiTer 
away the people's rights in wanton franchise grants, the 
Socialists have carefully protected every right of the pG;0- 
ple, and especially of labor, in their franchises, providing 
ultimately for municipal ownership. 

Seventh Fact. The Socialists Developed Public Educa^ 
tion. — They built five new modern, up-to-date school houses 
in Schenectady, raised the wages of the teachers, furnished 
free text-books and school supplies, established a dental 

In Milwaukee the Socialists drew upon the state uni- 
versity and a staff of specialists and experts from other 
states to conduct a bureau of efficiency and economy for the 
city ; installed a university extension department in the city 

52 Appeal Socialist Classics 

hall; published numerous educational bulletins on health 
and other subjects of public interest; conducted lectures on 
civic and social matters in the council chamber of the city 
hall, and finally conducted a whole week's budget exhibit of 
exposition for the education of the people in the work of 
the city. In Naugatuck, Conn., the Socialists raised wages 
of both teachers and school employes and started a campaign 
for teacher's pensions. 

Eighth Fact. The Socialists Developed Public Recrea- 
tion and Amusement Facilities. — The public school build- 
ings have been opened and made social and civic centers for 
lectures, clubs, reading rooms, socials and dances. Band 
concerts are conducted in the parks in summer and indoor 
concerts in winter — all free or with a nominal charge. 
Parks and playgrounds have been increased, public baths 
and recreation centers developed. Milwaukee conducted 
municipal dances, and an old-time beer garden was pur- 
chased by the city and turned into a public park with a 
children's playground. A branch of the public library was 
added, and today the books of child story and song are 
passed out over the bar where formerly the beer was handed 

Such are a few of the actual achievements of the So- 
cialists in the cities where they have been in office. 

What Schenectady or Butte or Berkeley or Milwaukee 
can do any other city can do. 

And if through the work of Socialists in the city coun- 
cil the price of water and gas and electricity is reduced, by 
the same means you may reduce the price of bread and coal 
and rent and all the other necessities now sold at monopoly 
prices by the trusts. That will help solve the high cost of 

And if through the work of a few Socialists in a city 
council you can raise wages, shorten hours and improve 
conditions of labor, by the same means you can force the 
fight into state and national matters and solve the labor 

Socialism and Government 53 

Beat the monopoly and the trust in the city now, and by 
and by you can beat them in the state and the nation. 

Help the Socialists to give the city an honest and 
efficient administration, and by and by you will have an 
honest administration in the state and nation. 

Thus Socialism offers the people of the city the only 
opportunity to work and to fight for a real solution of the 
problems that torment the people. 



The Socialist officials in Milwaukee adopted a comprehen- 
sive and sweeping policy of reforms in every department of 
civic activity. A full treatment of the subject may be found in 
the Campaign Book published in 1912 and revised and repub- 
lished in 1914. There is space here for a record only of those 
measui-es directly bearing on labor. The summary was made 
by Carl D. Thompson: 

1. Raised the wages of all the city laborers from $1.75 
per day to $2 per day, and thus fixed the minimum scale. 

2. Established the trade union scale of wages for all 
skilled employes of the city. 

3. Established the eight-hour work day by ordinance for 
all public employes, whether working for the city or by con- 
tractors employed by the city. 

4. Union labor employed exclusively in all departments 
wherever mechanics are employed. 

5. Raised the wages of 132 employes on the Sixteenth 
street viaduct to the union scale. 

6. Helped to settle the garment workers' strike. 

7. Secured the union label on every piece of public 

8. Passed an engineers' license ordinance, for which the 
engineers' union had been fighting for twenty years. This ordi- 
nance forces every engineer to pass an examination, thereby 
elevating the conditions of the engineer and protecting the lives 
of thousands of working men and women against careless and 
incompetent workmen. 

9. Passed an ordinance licensing every elevator operator 
in the city. This ordinance forces every operator to pass an 
examination, thereby elevating the conditions of the operator 
and protecting the lives of thousands of patrons of elevators 
every day against careless and incompetent workmen. 

54 Appeal Socialist Classics 

10. Under the county administration the Grand avenue 
viaduct was built by union labor. 

11. Through the influence of the Socialist members of the 
county board of supervisors the new county agricultural school 
will be built by union labor in its entirety. 

12. Through the influence of the city purchasing depart- 
ment the H. H. West and Siekert & Baum printing and bindery 
establishments were organized. 

13. All horseshoeing done only in union shops by order of 
the department of public works. 

14. Secured an addition of two days' "offs" for the police- 
men each month. 

15. The new police and fire alarm posts are now being 
cast in a union shop and will bear the label of the Molders' 
International Union. And, incidentally, the posts cost $10 apiece 
less than the next lowest bid of a non-union shop — thus saving 
the taxpayers $3,000 on the 600 posts and giving us the union 
label besides. 

16. Wherever possible, this administration has done the 
work of repair, remodeling and building by direct employment, 
employing union labor. 

17. All sprinkling wagons are now repaired and painted 
directly by the city by union labor, and for the first time in the 
history of the city they bear the union label. 

18. All street refuse cans bear the label of the Sheet Metal 
Workers' and Painters' International Unions. 

19. Every bridgetender in the city, numbering eighty- 
eight, organized, and where they formerly worked 72 hours to a 
shift, the majority are now employed on a twelve-hour shift, and 
all will be placed on a twelve-hour shift as soon as possible. An 
attempt was made to increase the wages, but this was defeated 
by the minority, republicans and democrats to a man voting to 
kill the increase. By a parliamentary trick they succeeded in 
laying the matter over for two weeks, thereby defeating the 

20. Every fireman, engineer, oiler, coal passer and helper 
in the city and county buildings now belongs to his respective 
union. Every man is now carrying a union card. And, besides, 
the men now have one day off in seven, something never 
before enjoyed, as they formerly worked seven days per week. 

21. The C. F. Comway company of Chicago bid on the 
asphalt street paving and was the successful bidder, but the 
administration was informed that this firm was fighting union 
labor in Chicago for the past three years. The administration 
succeeded in persuading this firm to yield to union demands and 
organized its men, not only in Milwaukee, but also in Chicago, 

Socialism and Government 55 

thereby materially assisting the engineers and other trades in 
the street paving industry. 

22. All elevator operators w^orking for the city and county 
have been organized into a union known as Elevator Operators' 
Union No. 13803 and affiliated with the Federated Trades 
Council and the American Federation of Labor. 

23. The elevator inspectors were induced to join the unions 
of the elevator constructors of Milwaukee. 

24. Garbage and ash collectors have been organized 
through the assistance of the administration. 

25. This administration inaugurated a thorough and sys- 
tematic factory inspection to insure steady improvement of 
sanitary conditions of labor. 

26. Established a child welfare department to help in the 
problem of childhood through the teaching and assistance of 
mothers. Reports printed in all papers. 

27. Established a tuberculosis commission to help the 
people in the fight against that dread disease. 


Under the heading "Facts for Voters," the campaign com- 
mittee of the Socialist party of Schenectady published in its 
Campaign Book for 1913 a summary of the work of the Social- 
ist administration for the previous twenty-one months, from 
which the follov^ang excerpts are taken: 

Comprehensive park system planned and started. 

Increased pay of unskilled labor from $1.75 to $2.25 for 
eight hours' work. 

Established special lighting district, or Great White Way, 
on State street. 

Closed all houses of prostitution in the city and kept them 

Closed all gambling houses where convictions could be 

Introduced free text books and free supplies for all grade 

Plans made and work started on complete readjustment of 
sewerage system. 

Contract let and construction begun on sewage disposal 

Free municipal collection of garbage introduced to replace 
the old haphazard private collection system. 

56 Appeal Socialist Classics 

Inaugurated spring clean-up, when rubbish and filth of 
years were eliminated. 

Increased pay of police through all grades, from chief to 

Pay of firemen increased, ranging from $25 to $100. 

Reduced cost of repairing asphalt pavements from $2.16 to 
$1.15 per square yard. 

Reduced cost of asphalt paving from $2.20 per square yard, 
"with grading extra, to $1.50 per square yard, including con- 
-crete base, asphalt surface and grading. 

Modernized and enlarged three schools in Ninth, Twelfth 
■and thirteenth wards; built three new schools. 

Work begun on municipal market buildings. 

Increased pay of grade teachers and principals, and raised 
teachers' minimum salary from $450 to $500. 

Established a dental clinic, where teeth of children are 
treated free. 

Engaged a city chemist, whose activities have terrorized 
unscrupulous food adulterators. 

Employed city food inspector to inspect bakeries, drug 
stores, candy shops, butcher shops, etc., and enforce pure food 

Adopted business methods in administration of city affairs, 
"increasing efficiency. 

Published for first time an intelligent municipal budget, 
rearranging departments in systematic order to show where 
every penny of city money is spent. 

Introduced clinic for tubercular children in charge of ex- 
perienced nurses and physicians. 

Inaugurated municipal indoor band concerts during winter 
season, free to public. 

Rigorously enforced union conditions on all contract jobs, 
-and employment of only union men upon these jobs. 

Passed and enforced ordinance requiring street car men 
to have 15 days' instruction before operating cars. 

Established absolute secrecy in city civil service examina- 
tions and conducted 92 examinations in one year against six 
in last year of Democratic regime. 

Added architects' branch to city engineer's office; all public 
Tvork plans being drawn here, saving .5 per cent of every job 
in private architects' fees — $2-5,000 saved in all. 

Procured wide-awake, modern milk inspector, who has revo- 
lutionized the city's milk supply. 

Babies' milk station established; free milk and free instruc- 
tions given to poor families. 

Socialism and Government 57 

Created department of maternity and infancy nursing, 
decreasing infant illness and infant mortality. 

Placed medical inspection of school children in hands of 
school authorities, and put city physicians in charge of indigent 
sick exclusively. 

Handled 36,000 pieces of mail yearly through police depart- 
ment, thus saving postage. 

Purchased five modei-n pieces of motor fire apparatus, and 
made Schenectady's fire department record second to none in 
state in point of efficiency. 

Inspected every building in city as to fire precautions and 
had erected 134 fire escapes on public and private buildings. 

Eliminated 700 outside privy vaults, for years a disgrace 
to any modern city. 

Enacted anti-cocaine law that stopped sale of habit-form- 
ing debauching drugs. 

Established central purchasing bureau that eliminated 
wasteful methods in vogue before, and thereby saved 30 per 
cent on purchase of supplies for city departments. 

Enacted pure-food ordinance, and enforced it, to protect 
food from exposure to contamination, 
fined $5,000. 

Established a municipal farm v/here unemployed might find 
woi'k and produce was raised for use at municipal grocery. 

Passed housing code to compel landlords to provide sani- 
tary and wholesome surroundings for tenants. 

Increased number of municipal playgrounds from two to 

Sold ice to thousands of families at 25 cents per 100 
pounds, 15 cents less than regular dealers, till stopped by in- 

Sold coal to thousands of families and not only cut out 
retail m.erchants' profits, but prevented local coal barons from 
raising price of coal to the exorbitant figure that surrounding 
cities were paying last v/inter. 

Conducted municipal grocery store where groceries were 
retailed at cost till stopped by injunction. 

Hamilton, Ohio. 

A Socialist administration, with Fred A. Hinkel as mayor 
and a clear majority in the council, went into office in Hamilton, 
Ohio, on January 1, 1914. Within a year it could I'ecord a long 
list of radical changes for the benefit of the working class and 
the people generally. From the statement vsrritten by Mayor 
Hinkel and published in the American Socialist of March 20, 
1915, the paragraphs on the following page are taken. 

58 Appeal Socialist Classics 

One of the first things done was to require an inventory 
of all the property owned by the city, a thing almost unheard 
of in Hamilton. 

The police force was reduced about one-third and the 
expense of that department was cut nearly $15,000 per 

Streets, sidewalks and alleys that had been blockaded 
for years were all opened up to the public. 

The blockading of crossings by the railroads has been 
practically eliminated. 

Nearly 3,000 loads of rubbish that accumulated on lots 
and back yards was hauled away by the city. 

A minimum wage of $2.50 per day was established for 
employes of the city and an eight-hour day. 

All railroad crossings have been rebuilt and put in good 

Special traffic policemen have been abolished, but the 
traffic rules have been enforced impartially. 

Sanitary drinking fountains have been installed in the 
parks and at prominent street corners. 

Delinquent bills for gas, water and electricity have been 
collected and no favorites known. 

Passed a model pure food law and enforced it strictly. 

The policy of issuing long time bonds has been abol- 
ished, and where bond issues are necessary they are now 
issued in serial form so that thej^ can be paid for promptly, 
saving thousands of dollars in interest. 

The ordinance requiring hucksters, peddlers and farm- 
ers to obtain a license to sell their goods in Hamilton has 
been repealed, opening the markets of Hamilton to all. 

An inspection of the entire city for the removal of fire 
traps and conditions that v^^ould cause fires was made and 
the number of fires occurring in the city has been cut in 

The main roads and streets leading out of Hamilton 
within the city limits were almost impassable. These have 
been regarded and put in excellent condition. 

Socialism and Government 59 

The regular police force is required to do the work of 
sanitary police and assist in the health department, saving 
sanitary police expense. 

Great work has been done in the outdoor relief depart- 
ment through the director of public safety. Under former 
administrations the outdoor relief fund had been turned 
over in a lump sum to private organizations. 

Commercialized vice which had existed openly and 
fiauntingly during most of the history of the city of Ham- 
ilton was abolished by the Socialist administration. 

The numbers of crimes and misdemeanors committed 
in the city are less by one-half than what they were in 
former years. 

Butte, Mont. 

In an article published in the American Socialist for March 
20, 1915, Lewis J. Duncan, former mayor of Butte, gives the 
following summary and review of the Socialist administration 
in that city: 

When the Socialist party came into power in the city of 
Butte, Mont., in the spring of 1911, it was on the crest of a 
wave of public nausea occasioned by the exposure of the negli- 
gence, inefficience and reckless dishonesty and extravagance of 
former democratic and republican administrations. . . . The 
work in every department of the city had been neglected and 
apparently none but office holders had derived any benefit. 
Public service corporations and contractors had had things all 
their own way. The equipment of the city in tools and machin- 
ery was wretchedly inadequate. The police department was 
corrupt and the vice elements in the city were under little, if 
any, restraint. 

The city's financial condition was notoriously bad. Accord- 
ing to the special auditor's report, issued in March, 1911, the 
net indebtedness of the city in excess of the legal 3 per cent 
limit was $157,995.21. After two years and eight months oi 
Socialist administration the auditors showed the city's net in- 
debtedness in excess of the legal 3 per cent limit to be only 
$19,031.08 — a gain on the indebtedness of nearly $139,000 in 
less than three years. 

During the four years of Socialist municipal service the 
city of Butte has acquired in special improvements in equip- 
ment, permanent and general, about $200,000 worth of prop- 
erty and has replenished her sinking fund to the extent of 

60 Appeal Socialist Classics 

Since 1911, when the Socialist regime began and the city 
of Butte commenced to get a new spirit, the work of the engi- 
neering department has been remarkalDle. It is remarkable 
not only for the amount of public improvements carried on, but 
for the low costs of these improvements. And it is in no small 
measure due to the efficiency and the enterprise that have char- 
acterized this department during the period named, that the 
people of Butte have become proud of their city and have mani- 
fested an interest in making the cit^' metropolitan in appear- 
ance and in beautifying and improving their residence and 
business properties. 

Property o\vners, who had previously protested out all 
special improvements contemplated by the city, have given to 
the Socialist administration their hearty co-operation, "because," 
they said, "we know how and where every cent of our money 
will be expended." 

The special improvements instituted and carried through 
by the Socialist municipal government have nearly doubled 
the value of the property of the small taxpayers; have given 
work to hundreds of men and instituted a period of prosperity 
(up to the time of the war panic last fall) unprecedented in 
the history of Butte. 

However, the Socialists have more to show for their four 
years of power than mere commercial enterprise. Of greater 
consideration is the accomplishment in the matter of the health 
and morality of the community. 

The health department of the city of Butte is the bright 
particular gem in the Socialist crown of glory. The work of 
this department alone has justified the Socialist administration 
of public affairs and its record is overwhelming evidence of the 
faithfulness and loyalty of its officers. 

The matter of milk inspection in the city prior to the So- 
cialist regime had been merely a grafting proposition. The 
dealers were in the habit of paying from five to twenty dollars 
a month for immunity from prosecution for selling milk below 
standard. Almost as bad was the condition in the butcher 
shoDS. Meat unfit for human consumption was being boldly 
sold over the counters. This has all been changed by vigilant 
inspection and the revocation of a few licenses of obdurate 

The service of food inspection was extended, first by city 
ordinance and afterwards by state law, to cover all foods and 
places where food is prepared for public consumption — board- 
ing houses, restaurants and hotels are subject to inspection of 
the sanitary officers, at any time of the day or night. Probably 
no other city in the country has cleaner kitchens than the city 

Socialism and Government 61 

of Butte. Also grocery stores, bakeries, green groceries, con- 
fectionery stores, ice cream parlors, in short, every place where 
eatables are sold, are scored monthly and the score is pub- 
lished in the Butte Socialist twice every month. The moral 
effect on the dealers is good, for it has established a rivalry 
between the merchants for high scores in cleanliness and neat- 

In addition to this food inspection, every house in the city 
limits is subject to inspection with respect to sewer service. 
The Socialists found a good many tenement houses and places 
rented to working people with no sewer facilities whatever. 
These were owned by wealthy people and non-resident property 
holders. They made the environment in the working class dis- 
tricts unwholesome to the last degree. 

People all over the city were careless in the disposal of 
garbage. The streets and alleys were deplorably noisome and 
unhealthy and epidemics of contagious diseases were alarmingly 
recurrent. Slop water thrown out in alleys ran through the 
surface gutters, settled in pools and became stagnant. In barns 
and alleys and backyards, piles of manure were allowed to stand 
and rot for months at a time. All this has been changed. 

The landlords proved to be the most difficult people to deal 
with. They would not clean their cesspools and were reluctant 
to make sewer connections and to put in toilet facilities. But 
a few prosecutions before the Socialist police judge and the 
imposition of stiff fines gradually had an educating effect on 
the landlords and most of these troubles rarely occur now. 

The records of the health department make interesting 
comparison to the effect that the Socialist administration saves 
more lives every year than are lost by accident in the mines of 
the Amalgamated Copper Company. 

Inside of two weeks after the Socialists were in charge of 
the city's affairs, the wine rooms were closed up tight and all 
the booths were taken out of the saloons. . . . The dance halls 
and all music were eliminated from the red light district and 
the liquor traffic was completely separated from the business. 
. . . Minors were forbidden to enter the district. The mes- 
senger boys were taken off those routes and all connections 
were removed. The service is done now by adult men only. 
. . . During this winter Butte has had a "bread line" for the 
first time in its history. The city has done all that it could do 
to help the unemployed men in the town. The street depart- 
ment worked two shifts of men and the city established a sort 
of "municipal lodging house," which housed between two and 
three thousand men during the month. 

62 Appeal Socialist Classics 

The effect of this sort of work is shown by the returns of 
the police court, which indicate a falling off of fines from $2,000 
to $350 a month. 

Berkeley, Cal. 

In his article on "The Story of a Socialist Mayor," pub- 
lished in the Western Comrade for September, 1913, J. Stitt Wil- 
son, mayor of Berkeley from July 1, 1011, to July 1, 1913, makes 
the following statement of his work and policy: 

The important municipal improvements which shall mark 
my administration in Berkeley are as follows: 

1. Municipal incinerator; 2, municipal garage and ambu- 
lance; 3, municipal laboratory; 4, municipal employment bureau; 
5, perfection of the police flashlight system; 6, additional fire 
department; 7, new heating apparatus; 8, extensive street im- 
provements; 9, spotless town campaigns; 10, new corporation 
yards; 11, passing sewer bonds. 

As a matter of fact Berkeley has never had a "Socialist 
administration." There have been a Socialist mayor and one 
councilman in a board of five. The anti-Socialist majority 
worked harmoniously with us on general municipal matters, 
but stood pat for capitalism each time we presented a genuine 
Socialist proposition. 

Had we had one more man on the council I believe Berkeley 
would have had by this time a municipal telephone, a municipal 
electric lighting plant, a municipal market and it would be 
standing out as a beacon light on the subject of taxation of 
land values. And before now a whole advanced program would 
be laid out to supplement the municipal labor bureau which we 
did get through, a program by which men would be employed, 
vacant land put under cultivation and value placed upon human 
beings, now the mere flotsam and jetsam in the labor market. 
. . . On each of these objects we set our hearts, and the So- 
cialist local and comrades did their part nobly and well, espe- 
cially on the municipal market. I gave months of special study 
to the matter of electric lighting and municipal telephone and 
personally prepared elaborate reports for the council. In all 
this work we constantly sowed the public mind with Socialist 
criticism of capitalism and constructive Socialist thought. 

This was my sorrow as a Socialist mayor that I did not have 
enough support in the council to carry out our program. But 
the work done on behalf of these projects is solid and endur- 
ing and is bound to bear fruit; and our proposals will have to 
be eventually faced and undertaken. In the meantime we have 
done a greatly needed work in educating the people on the 

Socialism and Government 63 



The Socialist party is still in this country a minor 
party. It polls about one million votes as against the sev- 
eral millions polled by the other parties, but small as it is, 
vi^ith only the more intelligent v^^orkingmen to support it, it 
has already done more for the workingmen of this country 
than any other party. 

In about twenty-eight different cities, which it has 
controlled, it has shown that a city can be run without 
graft. It has proved in Schenectady that ice and coal can 
be sold to the people at cost. It has shown there and else- 
where that when the city employs its own workmen at eight 
hours a day and union wages, improvements can be carried 
out at about half what the corrupt contractors charge. 

The Socialists have done all that any other party can 
do and they have done it better, more efficiently and more 
economically than other parties. Everywhere the Socialists 
have given "good government." In fact, their work has 
been so much approved by the people that the republicans, 
the democrats and the progressives have had to combine 
against the Socialists in order to defeat them. In several 
cases even the combined efforts of all these parties could 
not defeat the Socialists. 

Against all the hundreds of public officials elected by 
Socialists of the various states there has never yet been 
whispered the word "graft." In every case our opponents 
have had to admit that the Socialists were scrupulously 

Wherever the Socialists have been victorious it has 
been said that the town would be bankrupted, yet in no case 
has any Socialist city found it difficult to borrow money 
and nowhere has any Socialist town lost a single fac- 
tory. , . . 


Los Angeles 

This book is DUE on the last date stamped below. 





to picket and assemble and for everything that is really- 
going to benefit the working people of the country. 11 
These things are worth talking about, because the day fj 
is soon coming when workingmen the country over will 
need the aid of honest public officials and loyal comrades 
in office whose idea of politics is to serve honestly and 
efficiently the working class.- 

*The American Socialist, March 20, 1915. 




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