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Full text of "THE HAPPY WARRIOR ALFRED E. SMITH"

THE HAJ>FY WARRIOR. 

ALFRED E. SMITH 



THE 

A LFKEt) I! SUIT H 

<^/t Study of a ^Public Servant 

BY 
FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT 




BOSTON AND NEW YORK 
HOXJGHTON MIFFLIN COMPANY 
ambribge 

1928 



COFYR1GHCT, XJ2S, BY HOXJGHTON 
AJ-L 3RLIGKXS HESER 



FOREWORD 

IT is difficult, in the tumult of a political 
campaign, to set forth facts without bias, 
but I have tried, in the first part of this little 
book, to analyze fairly some of the causes 
that make Alfred E. Smith one of the most 
interesting Americans of this generation. 
In no way is this written as a partisan plea. 
The excuse lies in the deluge of letters com- 
ing to me from men and women in every cir- 
cumstance of life, and from every part of the 
United States, asking every conceivable kind 
of question about him. 

Legend is already forming, and many 
people are being swayed by the usual inven- 
tions of friend and foe which unfortunately 
accompany our Presidential contests. There 
are, nevertheless, many others who are wise 
enough to disregard the frothy antagonisms 



Vi FOREWORD 

and to seek honest information on which to 
formulate honest opinion. 

In the second part is included the address 
placing Governor Smith in nomination be- 
fore the Democratic National Convention at 
Houston, Texas, in June, 1928. 

FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT 

HYDE PARK, DUTCHESS COUNTY, N.Y. 
August 25, 1928 



THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

ALFRED E. SMITH 

I 
PREPARATION 



THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

ALFRED E. SMITH 

I 

PREPARATION 

WHEN the mental growth of a man 
in public life ceases, he ought, 
for the sake of the community, to retire. 
Most of our mediocre or unsuccessful Pres- 
idents were slipping downhill mentally be- 
fore they took office. Lincoln, Cleveland, 
Roosevelt, Wilson, and Coolidge broadened 
and strengthened as the years went by* 

By the same token, some men, unused 
to politics, become mere politicians when 
elevated to high office, while other men, 
brought up in the game of politics, rise su- 
perior to their environment. 

When I first knew Alfred E. Smith, he 
was a politician. Early in January, 1911, a 



4 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

small group of Senators and Assemblymen 
met in Albany to oppose the election by the 
Legislature of the Tammany candidate for 
the United States Senatorship. We believed 
that we had the unmistakable backing of our 
respective districts, but we were nearly all 
serving our first term, and knew little of 
procedure. A party caucus had been called. 
We expected to be defeated on the vote, and 
had been told that a caucus was in theory 
binding on those who took part in it. Some 
one said, ' Ask Assemblyman Smith, the ma- 
jority leader; he never tries to fool anybody/ 
So we went to the leader of the forces op- 
posed to us and got this answer, 'Boys, I 
want you to go into the caucus, and if you 
go in, you're bound by the action of the 
majority. That's party law. But if you're 
serious about this fight, keep your hands 
clean and stay out. Then you're free agents.' 
We stayed out, and won the fight; and inci- 
dentally we won, also, the definite know- 



PREPARATION 5 

ledge that Smith would play square with 
friend and foe alike. 

That legislative session started Smith up 
the ladder. In his previous years in the As- 
sembly, as a member of the minority party, 
he had shown little inclination to independ- 
ent action; but while constructive thought 
was at a discount he had, as was disclosed 
later, been giving deep study to the laws and 
government of his State. 

When, in 1911, the Legislature became 
Democratic for the first time in many years, 
with young men from Tammany Hall largely 
in control, the State was treated to the sur- 
prise of a large number of progressive meas- 
ures of legislation. Mixed up with the usual 
run of wholly partisan measures were pro- 
posals for sound steps in social reform 
factory laws, workmen's compensation, the 
protection of women and children in indus- 
try. Responsibility for the enactment of 
these and similar laws devolved upon^Smith 



6 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

as majority leader, and then as Speaker of 
the Assembly. 

It was during this period that a Republi- 
can, the head of one of the great non-partisan 
organizations devoted to social and govern- 
mental reform, said to me : 'That man Smith 
and the younger crowd with him represent 
a new spirit in Tammany Hall. They are 
organization followers, of course, but they 
seem to have discovered that there is some- 
thing more important than ward picnics and 
balls.' 

Smith was lucky, and not for the first or 
the last time. Instead of having to revert to 
a post in the minority, under four years of 
Republican control, he was sent as a dele- 
gate to the Constitutional Convention of 
1915. The great approval which he there 
won from such men as Root, Wickersham, 
and Stimson demonstrated that he was not 
only still growing mentally, but that during 
the years of legislative politics, he had 



PREPARATION 7 

grasped the theories and fundamentals of 
constitutional and administrative law. This 
was followed by a useful practical experience 
of three years, in administering the offices 
of Sheriff and of President of the Board of 
Aldermen in New York City. 

The Smith of 1918 was very different from 
the Smith of 1905. This might be called the 
first formative period of his growth. 

Those times were significant of a vast 
change in American political thought. They 
were the days of reform, of muckraking, of 
the advancement of new ideas, like woman's 
suffrage, recall of judges, prohibition, initia- 
tive and referendum, old-age pensions, and 
labor legislation. They brought bitter party 
splits and party alignments which were by 
no means clear or permanent. 

Through them Smith emerged with what 
Woodrow Wilson would have called ' liberal 
thought/ He was on the side of the progres- 
sives in the fields of legislation and of con- 



8 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

stitutional law, but he made it clear that he 
based action on fundamentals and not on 
temporary expediency. He knew enough of 
the practical side of life to waste little time 
in seeking the impossible, or in scattering 
his energies in behalf of causes in which 
general public interest could not be aroused. 

Utterly different in so many ways, yet 
there is between Theodore Roosevelt and 
Alfred E. Smith an extraordinary similarity 
of political method. To get what one can, 
fight for it, but not jeopardize it by asking 
for the moon, brought concrete results to 
both of them. This similarity accounts, per- 
haps, for the same type of blind devotion ac- 
corded them by many of their friends. 

In June, 1918, President Wilson asked 
me whether I would accede to the request of 
a number of New York City organization 
leaders to be the candidate for the Governor- 
ship. As my departure for European waters 
on Navy business was imminent, I could 



PREPARATION 9 

not run, and the President discussed with 
me the names of other candidates who had 
been suggested. At the end of the conver- 
sation, Wilson said, in substance what he 
later wrote: 'I should be entirely satisfied 
with the nomination of Smith. He seems 
to me to be a man who has responded in an 
extraordinary manner to the awakening 
forces of a new day, and the compulsion of 
changing circumstances. He seems to have 
noteworthy support from organizations and 
individuals of both parties who are working 
in one way or another for the improvement 
of government.' That was a Republican 
year, and most of us expected the defeat of 
Alfred E. Smith, candidate for Governor. 
Many of the old-time leaders were certain 
that no Catholic could be elected. In view 
of some of the events of 1928, it is interesting 
to look back to that summer and autumn of 
1918. With two million young Americans 
of every creed taking part in the final strug- 



1O THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

gle in Europe, religious prejudice remained 
very much under cover; Smith was elected 
Governor. Four times since then he has 
been a candidate for the same office, and 
that first example of keeping religion out of 
politics has, thank God, been followed in 
every succeeding campaign in his own 
State. 

It is an exceedingly easy thing for a Gov- 
ernor or a President to go along with the 
drift of the tide, to veto vicious legislation, 
to give honest administration, to lead a per- 
fectly peaceful life, and to avoid criticism or 
attack. Of such are the hundreds of for- 
gotten Governors and the dozens of Presi- 
dents whom we have to look up in a history 
book. 

I am not one of those who subscribe to the 
thought that elections are carried by the 
voters who are voting against something. 
Smith's elections as Governor refute that 
old belief. In every year he has appealed 



PREPARATION 1 1 

to the electorate, not as an opponent of 
measures, but as a proponent of a con- 
structive programme. It was historically 
an almost impossible task to pass a con- 
stitutional amendment or a bond issue in 
New York State by popular vote. Smith 
has come forward, in election after election 
during the past ten years, to ask approval 
of new measures of this kind. In almost 
every instance he has been beaten at the 
start, and, frankly, I have personally felt, 
on several occasions, that he would go down 
to inevitable defeat. 

To ask people to approve a fifty-million- 
dollar bond issue for State parks is daring; 
to follow it up with a request for a hundred 
million to eliminate grade crossings, and 
then for another hundred million for public 
buildings, prisons, and hospitals might be 
called foolhardy. 

Probably the Smith of the early days in 
the Assembly would have viewed the short 



12 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

ballot amendment with fear, and would have 
thought of the loss of many fat jobs which 
would result from the amendment providing 
for the consolidation of one hundred and 
sixty-five State Departments into eighteen. 
However, the Smith as Governor has kept 
on growing, and with that growth has come 
that faith in him and his proposals which has 
made popular ratification of all these meas- 
ures so overwhelming. 

Sometimes a man makes a reputation, 
deserved or otherwise, by a single action. 
It is rare for any public servant to fight 
against odds in behalf of constructive pro- 
posals, and to win in literally dozens of 
instances. The relationship between an 
executive and a legislature is, in many 
ways, the criterion of success, whether it 
be in the Governorship or the Presidency. 
That is where personality means much to 
the progress of the State or the Nation. 
Theodore Roosevelt, especially during his 



PREPARATION 13 

earlier years as President, succeeded in 
passing great constructive measures, often 
against the personal desires of an unsym- 
pathetic Congress. President Taft did not 
have the temperament either to dominate 
or to work with his Congress. The first six 
years of President Wilson brought out again 
the qualities of constructive leadership. It 
is difficult to characterize the administra- 
tions of President Harding and President 
Coolidge in the same way. 

I do not think that I am letting myself be 
influenced by partisanship when I express 
the feeling that since the war national poli- 
tics in this country has been on a level 
'almost incredibly low. We have, as a na- 
tion, the cynical attitude of being willing 
to let almost any individual or group run 
our National Government so long as they 
do not interfere with our pastime or our 
prosperity. 

If New York State had been run that 



14 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

way since 1918, we never should have heard 
of Governor Smith, nor would that State be, 
as it is to-day, a model constantly copied by 
other States, because of its progressive 
legislation and administration. 

'But/ people ask me, 'what has the abil- 
ity of Smith as Governor to do with his avail- 
ability for the Presidency?' 

The answer is twofold. First, most of our 
successful Presidents of the past have had 
little or no experience as office-holders under 
the Federal Government. In other words, 
success in the Presidency has not been pre- 
dicated on previous national service. Sec- 
ondly, Governor Smith has a far greater 
understanding of national and international 
problems than even most of his friends 
imagine. One is apt to forget that during a 
constant personal contact with public affairs 
during twenty-three years, it is inevitable 
that he has acquired a large fund of know- 
ledge of governmental problems outside of 



PREPARATION 15 

the confines of his own State. This has been 
proved by a dozen instances of men who, 
during the past few months, have journeyed 
to discuss national problems with him and 
have come back and said to me, *He knew 
just as much and more about the problem 
than I did.' 

So, also, with the relationship between the 
United States and foreign nations. I re- 
member well that, before undertaking an 
active part in the 1924 pre-convention cam- 
paign, I had a long talk with the Governor 
in regard to foreign policy. The question of 
American membership in the League of Na- 
tions was not then an active one, but the 
Governor displayed both a great familiarity 
with the practical humanitarian accomplish- 
ments of the League, and also a good under- 
standing of how the United States could help 
in a practical way in the further develop- 
ment of these humanitarian and peace- 
making activities without involving us in 
purely European political problems. 



16 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

Again Governor Smith reminds me of 
Theodore Roosevelt in his instinctive meth- 
od of stripping the shell of verbiage and 
extraneous matter from any problem and of 
then presenting it as a definite programme 
which any one can understand. When the 
country had been engaged for years in a 
wordy controversy as to whether an inter- 
oceanic canal should be built at Nicaragua 
or Panama, President Roosevelt said to 
Congress and the Nation: 'We all need and 
want a canal. Here are the engineering re- 
ports. Now go ahead and build one/ I have 
been reminded of that episode by the para- 
graph in the Governor's speech of accept- 
ance which deals with the problem of a ship 
canal from the Great Lakes to the Atlantic. 
He says: 'As Governor of New York, I have 
heretofore expressed a preference for the all- 
Amierican route, basing my view on engi- 
neers' reports made to me. The correctness 
of these reports and also of those favoring the 



PREPARATION 17 

St. Lawrence route has been challenged. As 
President of the United States, therefore, it 
would be my clear duty to restudy this ques- 
tion impartially upon engineers* reports the 
accuracy of which must be above question. 
When the results of such a study are given 
to Congress, I am entirely willing to abide 
by the decision of Congress/ 

It is the memory of dozens of cases where 
the Governor has sought a concrete accom- 
plishment, and obtained it, that makes many 
believe that the same qualities would prove 
effective in the give-and-take of Washington 
life, and the fact that he has had long years 
of legislative experience makes it probable 
that he would work with Congress instead of 
trying to browbeat Congress or drift into a 
hopeless deadlock. 

At the same time, when cooperation with 
the legislative branch of the Government has 
failed, he has used the weapon of popular 
appeal so effectively that he has attained his 



18 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

end. I like a paragraph in one of his recent 
speeches: *0f all men I have reason to be- 
lieve that the people can and do grasp the 
problems of the Government. Against the 
opposition of the self-seeker and the parti- 
san, again and again, I have seen legislation 
won by the pressure of popular demand, 
exerted after the people had had an honest, 
frank, and complete explanation of the is- 
sues. That direct contact with the people I 
propose to continue in this campaign, and, 
if I am elected, in the conduct of the Nation's 
affairs/ Any one who knows Governor 
Smith will recognize that this is no empty 
boast. 

These are some of the reasons that give 
me the feeling that Governor Smith has 
passed, successfully, through what might be 
termed the second period of preparation. 
He has now been active in the larger field of 
public service for ten years, with the result 
that he is everywhere recognized as belong- 



PREPARATION 19 

ing in the top rank of the practical experts 
in Government service. 

Two more personal qualities are worth 
considering. First, in the matter of his ap- 
pointments to public office, it would have 
been an easy matter to have followed the 
usual rule of filling the executive offices 
around him in accordance with the machine- 
made recommendations of the local political 
leaders of his own party. From his first in- 
auguration as Governor his appointees have 
been chosen for their ability to get things 
done right. They have come from Republi- 
can as well as Democratic sources, and they 
have made good. 

A few years ago a local political leader 
came to the Governor to complain most bit- 
terly because the head of one of the technical 
State departments had discharged a super- 
numerary watchman on the canal. The Gov- 
ernor made it so clear that he would support 
the interest of the State rather than that of 



20 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

the political machine that this leader said to 
me later: 'What's the use? You can't fool 
Al; he has the facts, and even though he 
made all my boys back home sore, we've got 
to admit he's right, and for every vote he 
loses by being stiff-necked he'll pick up five 
votes from people who never supported a 
Democrat in all their lives.' 

Finally, there is the man himself the 
man in his home when the work of the day 
is done. Perhaps my personal regard for 
him is based on an inborn feeling for those 
grown-ups who have not wholly grown up, 
for the spirit of fun and of play that we see 
in a very few of our older friends. It would 
be hard to find a happier type of American 
family life than that of the Governor; it is 
the kind that is stimulating to all who have 
seen it, for it combines straight living and 
family affection with jest and play and song. 
High official position calls for dignity and 
simplicity, and these qualities are present in 
the Governor's public and private life. 



PREPARATION 21 

When the book of this generation is closed, 
it will record the very definite influence of 
that distinctively American product, Alfred 
E. Smith. It has been, and is, an influence 
against sham and fraud and intolerance and 
selfish apathy. He has stimulated thousands 
by his own example of high-minded service 
and by a personality which has compelled 
attention. He has continued to grow. He 
has proved that government is best con- 
ducted by a human being and not by a 
machine. 



II 

PRESENTATION 



II 

PRESENTATION 

ADDRESS NOMINATING GOVERNOR SMITH AT 

THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION 

IN HOUSTON, JUNE, 1928 

I COME for the third time to urge upon a 
convention of my party, the nomination 
of the Governor of the State of New York. 
The faith which I held I still hold. It has 
been justified in the achievement. The 
whole country now has learned the measure 
of his greatness. 

During another four years his every act 
has been under the searchlight of friend and 
foe, and he has not been found wanting. 
Slowly, surely, the proper understanding of 
this man has spread from coast to coast, 
from North to South. Most noteworthy is 
this fact, that the understanding of his 
stature has been spread by no paid propa- 



26 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

ganda, by no effort on his part to do other 
than devote his time, his head, and his heart 
to the duties of his high office and the wel- 
fare of the State. His most uncompromising 
opponent will not deny that he has achieved 
an unprecedented popularity among the 
people of this country. He is well called ' the 
Pathfinder to the open road for all true lov- 
ers of Humanity/ 

It is, however, not my belief that I should 
urge popularity as the criterion in making 
our choice. A higher obligation falls upon 
us. We must, first of all, make sure that our 
nominee possesses the unusual qualifications 
called for by the high office of President of 
these United States. Mere party expediency 
must be subservient to national good. We 
are Americans even before we are Demo- 
crats. 

What sort of President do we need to-day? 
A man, I take it, who has four great char- 
acteristics, every one of them an essential to 



PRESENTATION 27 

the office. First of all, leadership articu- 
late, virile willing to bear responsibility, 
needing no official spokesman to interpret 
the oracle. Next, experience, that does not 
guess, but knows from long practice the 
science of governing, which is a very differ- 
ent thing from mere technical bureau organ- 
izing. Then honesty the honesty that 
hates hypocrisy and cannot live with con- 
cealment and deceit. 

Last, and, in this time, most vital, that 
rare ability to make popular government 
function as it was intended to by the 
Fathers, to reverse the present trend toward 
apathy and arouse in the citizenship an ac- 
tive interest a willingness to reassume 
its share of responsibility for the Nation's 
progress. So only can we have once more a 
government, not just for the people, but by 
the people also. 

History gives us confident assurance that 
a man who has displayed these qualities as 



28 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

a great Governor of a State, has invariably 
carried them with him to become a great 
President. Look back over our list of Presi- 
dents since the war between the States, 
when our rapid growth made our Nation's 
business an expert's task. Who stand out 
as our great Presidents? New York gave to 
us Grover Cleveland teaching in Albany 
that public office is a public trust; Theodore 
Roosevelt preaching the doctrine of the 
square deal for all; Virginia and New Jersey 
gave to us that pioneer of fellowship be- 
tween nations, our great leader, Woodrow 
Wilson. 

Let us measure our present Governor by 
those standards. Personal leadership is a 
fundamental of successful government. I do 
not mean the leadership of the band of good 
fellows and good schemers who followed 
President Harding, nor the purely perfunc- 
tory party loyalty which has part of the 
time in part of the country sustained the 



PRESENTATION 29 

present Chief Executive. I mean that 
leadership which, by sheer force of mind, by 
chain of unanswerable logic, has brought 
friends and foes alike to enact vitally needed 
measures of government reform. 

His staunchest political adversaries con- 
cede the Governor's unique and unparal- 
leled record of constructive achievement in 
the total reorganization of the machinery of 
government, in the business-like manage- 
ment of State finance, in the enactment of a 
legislative programme for the protection of 
men, women, and children engaged in in- 
dustry, in the improvement of the public 
health, and in the attainment of the finest 
standard of public service in the interest of 
humanity. This he has accomplished by a 
personality of vibrant, many-sided appeal, 
which has swept along with it a legislature 
of a different political faith. 

During the past month alone, the Re- 
publican-controlled Congress of the United 



3O THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

States repeatedly passed important 
over the veto of a Republican President. 
During eight years at Albany the wisdom 
of every veto by a Democratic Governor has 
been sustained by a Republican Legislature. 
In the same way the fitness of his appoint- 
ments has been recognized and confirmed 
without exception by a hostile Republican 
State Senate, whereas a friendly Federal 
Senate has on occasion after occasion re- 
jected the nominations sent in by its titular 
party leader. 

The second great need is experience. By 
this I refer not merely to length of time in 
office I mean that practical understand- 
ing which conies from the long and thought- 
ful study of, and daily dealings with, the 
basic principles involved in the science of 
taxation, of social welfare, of industrial legis- 
lation, of governmental budgets and ad- 
ministration, of penology, of legislative pro- 
cedure and practice, of constitutional law. 



PRESENTATION 31 

In all these matters the Governor of New 
York has developed himself into an expert, 
recognized and consulted by men and wo- 
men of all parties. In any conference of 
scholars on these subjects he takes his place 
naturally as a trained and efficient specialist. 
He also possesses that most unusual quality 
of selecting appointees, not only skilled in 
the theoretical side of their work, but able 
to give the highest administrative success to 
their task. The high standard of the ap- 
pointees of the Governor, their integrity, 
their ability, has made strong appeal to the 
'Citizens of his State, urban and rural, regard- 
less of party. I add 'rural' advisedly, for 
each succeeding gubernatorial election has 
shown for him even greater proportional 
gains in the agricultural sections than in the 
large communities. 

As one who served his State in the Legis- 
lature of which this Governor was then also 
a member, and who later for nearly eight 



32 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

years held an administrative post under 
President Wilson at Washington, I can bear 
witness that the problems which confront 
the Governor of New York and those na- 
tional problems which confront the Presi- 
dent at Washington differ chiefly in geo- 
graphic extent and not in the fundamentals 
of political principle. The Governor's study 
of the needs of his own State has given him* 
deep insight into similar problems of other 
States and also of their application to the 
machinery and the needs of the Federal 
Government. In the last analysis a matter 
of administrative reform, of industrial bet- 
terment, of the regulation of public carriers, 
of the development of natural resources, of 
the retention of the ownership of primary 
water-power in the people, of the improve- 
ment of the lot of the farmer, differs little, 
whether the problem occur in Albany, in 
Spokane, in Atlanta, or in Washington. 
How well the people of his State have 



PRESENTATION 33 

understood and approved the wise solution 
of these questions is best shown by the fact 
that he has been elected and reflected, and 
reflected, and again elected Governor by 
huge majorities in the hundreds of thou- 
sands in a normally Republican State. 

Now, as to the requisite of honesty. I do 
not mean an honesty that merely keeps a 
man out of jail, or an honesty that, while 
avoiding personal smirch, hides the corrup- 
tion of others. I speak of that honesty that 
lets a man sleep well of nights, fearing no 
Senatorial investigation, that honesty that 
demands faithfulness to the public trust in 
every public servant, that honesty which 
takes immediate action to correct abuse. 

The whole story of his constant and per- 
sistent efforts to insure the practice of the 
spirit as well as the letter of official and 
private probity in public places is so well 
understood by the voters of his State that 
more and more Republicans vote for him 



34 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

every time he is attacked. This is a topic 
which need riot be enlarged upon. The vot- 
ing public of the Nation is fully wise enough 
to compare the ethical standards of official 
Albany with those of official Washington. 

And now, last of all, and where the Gov- 
ernor excels over all the political leaders of 
this day, comes the ability to interest the 
people in the mechanics of their govern- 
mental machinery, to take the engine apart 
and show the function of each wheel. 

Power to impart knowledge of, and create 
interest in government is the crying need of 
our time. The soul of our country, lulled 
by mere material prosperity, has passed 
through eight gray years. 

Our people must not acquiesce in the easy 
thought of being mere passengers so long as 
the drivers and mechanics do not disturb 
our comfort. We must be concerned over 
our destination, not merely satisfied that the 
passing scenery is pleasant to the eye. We 



PRESENTATION 35 

must be interested in whether that national 
destination be heaven or hell and not con- 
tent that the man at the wheel has assured 
us that we shall there find a full bank ac- 
count and a soft bed. 

In an era of the ready-made we must not 
accept ready-made government; in a day of 
high-powered advertising we must not fall 
for the false statements of the most highly 
organized propaganda ever developed by the 
owners of the Republican Party. We do not 
want to change these United Sovereign 
States of America into the * United States, 
Incorporated/ with a limited and self- 
perpetuating board of directors and no vot- 
ing power in the common stockholders. 

This is a time of national danger unless 
America can be roused again to wakefulness. 
I say this in no spirit of the demagogue, in 
no wish to attack the legitimate course of 
the life or business of our citizens. I see only 
one hope of a return to that participation 



36 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

by the people in their government which 
hitherto marked us out as the great out- 
standing success among democratic repub- 
lics. 

That hope lies in the personality of the 
new man at the wheel, and especially in his 
purpose to arouse the spirit of interest and 
the desire to participate. 

The Governor of the State of New York 
stands out to-day as having that purpose, as 
having proved during these same eight 
years not only his desire, but his power to 
make the people as interested in their gov- 
ernment as he is himself. 

I have described, so far, qualities entirely 
of the mind the mental and moral equip- 
ment without which no President can suc- 
cessfully meet the administrative and ma- 
terial problems of his office. It is possible 
with only these qualities for a man to be a 
reasonably efficient President, but there is 
one thing more needed to make him a great 



PRESENTATION 37 

President. It is that quality of soul which 
makes a man loved by little , children, by 
dumb animals, that quality of soul which 
makes him a strong help to all those in sor- 
row or in trouble, that quality which makes 
him not merely admired, but loved by all 
the people the quality of sympathetic 
understanding of the human heart, of real 
interest in one's fellow men. Instinctively 
he senses the popular need because he him- 
self has lived through the hardship, the 
labor, and the sacrifice which must be en- 
dured by every man of heroic mould who 
struggles up to eminence from obscurity and 
low estate. Between him and the people is 
that subtle bond which makes him their 
champion and makes them enthusiastically 
trust him with their loyalty and their love. 
Our two greatest Presidents of modern 
times possessed this quality to an unusual 
degree. It was, indeed, what above all made 
them great. It was Lincoln's human heart, 



3 8 THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

and Woodrow Wilson's passionate desire to 
bring about the happiness of the whole world 
which will be the best remembered by the 
historians of a hundred years from now. It 
is what is so conspicuously lacking in our 
present administration, a lack which has 
been at the bottom of the growing dislike 
and even hatred of the other nations toward 
us. For without this love and understanding 
of his fellow men, no Chief Executive can 
win for his land that international friendship 
which is alone the sure foundation of lasting 
peace. 

Because of his power of leadership, be- 
cause of his unequaled knowledge of the 
science of government, because of his un- 
compromising honesty, because of his ability 
to bring the government home to the peo- 
ple, there is no doubt that our Governor will 
make an * efficient ' President, but it is because 
he also possesses, to a superlative degree, 
this rare faculty of sympathetic understand- 



PRESENTATION 39 

ing, I prophesy that he will also make a great 
President, and because of this I further 
prophesy that he will again place us among 
the nations of the world as a country which 
values its ideals as much as its material 
prosperity a land that has no selfish de- 
signs on any weaker power, a land the ideal 
and inspiration of all those who dream a 
kinder, happier civilization in the days to 
come. 

If the vision of real world peace, of the 
abolishment of war, ever comes true, it will 
not be through the mere mathematical cal- 
culations of a reduction of armament pro- 
gramme nor the platitudes of multilateral 
treaties piously deprecating armed conflict. 
It will be because this Nation will select as 
its head a leader who understands the human 
side of life, who has the force of character 
and the keenness of brain to take, instinc- 
tively, the right course and the real course 
toward a prosperity that will be more than 



4O THE HAPPY WARRIOR 

material, a leader also who grasps and under- 
stands not only large affairs of business and 
government, but in an equal degree the 
aspirations and the needs of the individual, 
the farmer, the wage-earner the great 
mass of average citizens who make up the 
backbone of our Nation. 

America needs not only an administrator, 
but a leader a pathfinder, a blazer of the 
trail to the high road that will avoid the bot- 
tomless morass of crass materialism that has 
engulfed so many of the great civilizations of 
the past. It is the privilege of Democracy 
not only to offer such a man, but to offer 
him as the surest leader to victory. To stand 
upon the ramparts and die for our principles 
is heroic. To sally forth to battle and win for 
our principles is something more than heroic. 
We offer one who has the will to win who 
not only deserves success, but commands it. 
Victory is his habit the happy warrior 
Alfred E. Smith.