APPEAL SOCIALIST CLASSICS
EDITED BY W. J. GHENT
Socialism and Government
/ - ■«■
APPEAL SOCIALIST CLASSICS
EDITED BY W. J. GHENT
Socialism and Government
Working Programs and Records of
Socialists in Office
(OS ANGELES. CALIF.
Copyright, 1916, by Appeal to Reason
APPEAL TO REASON
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
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
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
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.
SOCIALISM AND GOVERNMENT
REVIEW OF SOCIALIST ACHIEVEMENTS.
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) :
BY MORRIS HILLQUIT.
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.
NOTES ON SOCIALIST ACTIVITIES.
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
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
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
IN THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS.
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
RECORD OF VICTOR L. BERGER.
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.
I. LABOR MEASURES.
1. Resolution to Investigate the Lawrence Strike Sit-
uation. — In the latter part of 1911 and the early part of
14 Appe.al 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
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
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.
II. THE TRUST PROBLEM— THE SOCIALIST SOLUTION.
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.
III. THE REAL DEMOCRACY.
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-
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
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-
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
IV. MISCELLANEOUS MEASURES.
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.
V. INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND PEACE.
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
BERGER'S FURTHER SERVICE.
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:
BY LOUIS KOPELIN.
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.
RECORD OF MEYER LONDON.
BY LUCIEN SAINT.
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:
URGES CONFERENCE OF NEUTRAL NATIONS,
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
WORKS FOR NATIONAL INSURANCE FUND.
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
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.
VOTES AGAINST INVASION OF MEXICO.
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
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
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-
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.
PERSONAL REPORTS TO CONSTITUENTS.
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
IN THE STATE LEGISLATURES.
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.
James F. Carey, Haverhill.
Louis M. Scates, Haverhill.
1900— Two Members.
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.
James F. Carey, Haverhill.
Frederic O. MacCartney, Rockland.
W. S. Ransden, Brockton.
1903— Two Members.
James F. Carey, Haverhill.
Frederic O. MacCartney, Rockland (died in office).
26 Appeal Socialist Classics
1905-6— Eight Members.
A. J. Pettigrew, Manatee county.
Joseph Ambrose, Chicago.
Andrew Olson, Chicago.
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) —
Jacob Rummel (Senator).
W. J. Aldridge.
E. J. Berner.
1907-08— Six Members.
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) —
Jacob Rummel (Senator) elected in 1904.
W. J. Aldridge.
E. J, Berner.
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.
Frank J. Weber.
1911-12— Twenty Members.
Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1910 and 1911).
Nels S. Hillman, Two Harbors.
New York —
Herbert M. Merrill, Schenectady.
North Dakota —
Wesley Fassett, Dunseith.
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
W. J. Gilboy.
E. H. Kiefer.
F. B. Metcalfe.
J. H. Vint.
Frank J. Weber.
1913-14 — Twenty-one Members.
C. W. Kingsley, Los Angeles.
Illinois (all from Chicago) —
H. W. Harris.
C. M. Madsen.
Joseph M. Mason.
Fred W. Stanton (Senator), Mulberry.
Everett Miller, Scammon.
Ben F. Wilson, Girard.
Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1912 and 1918).
Nels S. Hillman, Two Harbors.
Charles H. Conner, Eureka.
Martin J. Scanlan (Senator), Tonopah.
I. F. Davis, Tonopah.
W. H. Kingery, Shelton.
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) —
Gabriel Zophy (Senator, elected in 1910).
E. H. Kiefer.
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.
George W. Downing, Los Angeles.
L. A. Spengler, Los Angeles.
E. W. Bowman (Senator), Council, Adams County.
C. M. Madsen, Chicago.
Joseph M. Mason, Chicago.
George D. Brewer, Girard.
Chas. H. Morrill, Haverhill (elected in 1914 and 1915).
A. 0. Devoid, Minneapolis.
J. W. Woodfill, Two Harbors.
Leslie A. Bechtel, Silver Bow County.
Alexander Mackel, Silver Bow County.
New Mexico —
W. C. Tharp, Clovis, Curry County.
M. J. Scanlan (Senator, elected in 1912), Tonopak.
C. A. Steele, Yerington.
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.
James H. Maurer, Reading.
J. Alexander Bcvan, Tooele.
Wisconsin (all from Milwaukee) —
Louis A. Arnold (Senator).
H. (X Kent.
F. B. Metcalfe.
William L. Smith.
J. H. Vint.
Frank J. Weber.
E. H. Zinn.
Socialism and Government 29
SOCIALIST STATE PROGRAM.
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.
I. LABOR LEGISLATION.
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.
III. PUBLIC EDUCATION.
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
V. PUBLIC WORKS AND CONSERVATION.
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.
VIL EQUAL SUFFRAGE.
1. Unrestricted political rights for men and women.
2. Resident qualification for all elections not to exceed
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.
IX. DEFECTIVES AND DELINQUENTS.
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
BY CARL D. THOMPSON.
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.
TWENTY-ONE SOCIALISTS IN NINE STATE LEGISLATURES.
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
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.
ONE HUNDRED FORTY-ONE SUCCESSFUL SOCIALIST
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:
I. LABOR MEASURES.
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
3. Better protection on dangerous machinery in factories.
4. Requiring blowers on all emery wheels used in metal
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-
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
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
26. Sunday closing of stores (except groceries and meat
markets), releasing clerks and other employes from Sunday
II. POLITICAL MEASURES.
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.
in. MUNICIPAL MEASURES.
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.
IV. EDUCATIONAL MEASURES.
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).
V. JUDICIAL MEASURES.
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-
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).
THE SESSIONS OF 1915.
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-
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-
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
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
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
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
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.
BY ETHELWYN MILLS.
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
IN THE MUNICIPALITIES.
SOCIALIST MUNICIPAL PROGRAM.
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
(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.
CITY PLATTING, PLANNING AND HOUSING.
(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
(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.
THE LIQUOR TRAFFIC AND VICE.
(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
SOCIALIST RECORDS IN OFFICE.
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
SUMMARY OF WORK DONE.
BY CARL D. THOMPSON.
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,
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
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
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
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
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
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.
SUMMARIES BY LEADING CITIES.
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
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
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
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
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,
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
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,
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.
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
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
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
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
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.
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
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
A MUNICIPAL REVIEW.
BY ROBERT HUNTER.
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. , . .
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LIBRARY
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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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