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"Out of this condition has come chaos. The chaos might have been helped by agreements between railroad corporations themselves, if such agreements could have been made legally binding, and each railroad could have been brought entirely under either the interstate commerce law or the laws of some particular State. But both the State and the interstate commerce laws provide that no such agreements shall be legal. No railroad officials whose roads run into two or more States can obey all the laws of the States and the General Government at the same time.
"In my judgment, if the railroads of the United States could and would try to carry out in its entirety the interstate commerce law as now interpreted by the railroad commission, the result would soon be shown to be a possible benefit to a few of the strongest and best trunk lines, a great injury to the people as a whole, and bankruptcy to a majority of the companies."
A judge of the United States District Court of Vermont has gone further than other judges in
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construing the law prohibiting the mailing of envelopes having on the outside words calculated to reflect injuriously on the addressee. Persons have been arrested and fined or imprisoned, under this law, for sending dunning letters and cards on which were written words indicating distrust. The judge referred to has decided that the law is violated by sending letters in envelopes bearing such words as "Excelsior Collection Agency," as those words attract attention, and indicate delinquency in making payments on the part of the persons addressed.
The United States Express Company has issued peremptory orders to all of its agents not to receive money, tickets, or lists of drawings from the Louisiana Lottery Company, or in any way to assist in the transaction of lottery business.
The Adams Express Company will not help the Government to cripple the Louisiana Lottery business. It will not undertake to ask every sender of a package to declare its contents, and will receive and forward all packages as heretofore.
The Republicans of the district now represented by Langston, the Virginia negro seated by the House in the last days of the session, refuse to make any nominations recognizing the impossibility of success. This fact, in the view of the Democratic papers, shows that Langston's claim to the seat was fraudulent.
Certain newspapers again suggest that Congressmen be paid by the day of actual attendance at the sessions, as a remedy for absenteeism.
In view of the fact that Congressional apportionment and the legislative apportionment of the several States are based on census figures, the suggestion has been made that a permanent census bureau should be established. In no other way can accuracy and honesty, it is thought, be secured. It requires a special talent and training to digest data collected, as well as to supervise the work of enumeration and collection, and the present system is held to be incompatible with these requirements.
A proposal has been submitted to the lower Austrian Diet to increase the duty on American weavers' spools, in retaliation for the McKinley law.
The collector of the port of New York has been in office eighteen months, and has been sued four thousand times. Scarcely a day passes that the collector is not sued a dozen times. The complications of the tariff regulations form the basis of these suits. Some of these go on for generations. Before the Supreme Court there are suits which were brought against collector Schell in 1856.
The Congo State Government proposes to reduce the tariff on all articles except firearms. In the case of firearms the ten per cent approved by the conference of the powers will be maintained.
There is some talk about taxing posters in London. In France, the yield from the droit d'affichage is seven million francs.
The sultan has surrendered to Germany, for four million marks, his sovereign rights over that part of the East African coast which is leased to the German East African Company.
In the message of Chief Perryman to the council of the Creek nation, now in session at Ocmulgee, he says that the close and intimate feeling of unity which has always existed among the various tribes of Indians arising fom a common origin has been greatly disturbed in the past few years. Congress has enacted a law by which the Western tribes are fast allotting their lands preparatory to admission as citizens. The five civilized nations also are not without danger from outside influences. The relationship existing among those nations is clearly defined in their international compact, but even this relationship has been seriously disturbed by an act of Congress extending the jurisdiction of the Territorial courts over controversies between citizens of the different nations.
There has been introduced in Congress also a bill authorizing the Territorial courts to allot and assign to each citizen of these nations who becomes a citizen of the United States, under a former act of Congress, his pro rata share of the lands of his tribe. Thus the rights, privileges, and authority of the five nations are infringed upon and curtailed at almost every session of Congress.
"The fault lies," the chief says, "in the ignorance of our would-be benefactors as regards
the true condition and needs of the Indians. Congress, through its misdirected zeal for the betterment of the condition of the Indians, has handicapped our most laudable efforts for selfgovernment and self-preservation. Unceasing vigilance is the only hope of our existence. The Congress of the United States must be constantly informed of our condition, and must be continually reminded of the sacred treaty obligations entered into with us in the past. It is recommended, therefore, that a strong delegation be sent to Washington to represent our nation during the next session of Congress."
of Mississippi territory, whenever Congress shall authorize such an arrangement. The provision looks to the ultimate separation of the "white counties" from the black, and the formation of one or the other into a new State, as a solution of the race question.
A New York Socialist having been asked how it happened that the Socialist party had so changed its policy as to nominate a State ticket of their own, he explained that it was due to the new ballot law, which makes the State pay for the ballots and other expenses of all candidates.
A "Mutual Protective Association" has been organized in Oakley, Ill., to oppose the fish laws of the State.
The Circuit Court at Columbus, Kan., has decided that it is no crime to steal whiskey, it being unlawful to sell liquor in that State. An attempt will now be made to punish the acquitted thief for stealing the bottles that contained the whiskey.
The New York Tax Commissioner stated before the Fas-ett Investigation Committee that the rich men as a rule engage in subterfuge and trickery to escape the payment of taxes on personal property, and that only the ignorant and struggling men of business are obliged to comply with the law. Cornelius Vanderbilt pays taxes on only $200,000 worth of personal property. Jay Gould pays an assessment of $500,000. A large business has grown up in New York in procuring the reduction of assessments. The rich make affidavits as to their financial condition which are absolutely and ridiculously false. According to these affidavits, one half of the rich men are bankrupts. The Tax Commissioner believed that if personal property in New York City paid the tax properly levied the tax rate would be reduced fully thirty per cent.
Baltimore Germans are excited over the resurrection, by the police, of an old law, which provides that no entertainment of any sort for which an admission price is charged can be held on Sunday if any one objects. The statute has been practically dead so long that the district attorney did not know of its existence until a recent Sunday, when the police prevented a lecture by a German on the strength of this old
The Sheffield (England) Corporation prohibits the crying of milk on Sundays. A milkman has
been recently arrested for that offence, although nobody objected or complained.
The London correspondent of the New York Sun writes: :
"This is the season of the year when the London county council considers the question of renewing the licenses of the music halls. The Empire and the Aquarium have been under discussion, and it looks somewhat doubtful whether either will be able to conduct business as heretofore. A vigilance committee constituted of members of the council have been doing detective duty at the Empire and Aquarium, and have recommended that the licenses be refused."
The Boston Aldermen have appointed a committee to ascertain what action is necessary to regulate the height of buildings erected in the city. A few years ago a law looking to the regulation of this business was procured; but the courts annulled it, it having been held that, so long as builders used proper materials and otherwise conformed to the laws, they could not be restrained as to the height of their buildings.
Three thousand Belgian miners are out on strike for an increase of wages in the Charleroi district. It is expected that the movement will become general.
The Austrian workers in metal industries will hold a national convention in Brünn on Nov. 1st. Their primary purpose will be organization of the hitherto unorganized metal workers. In the call for the congress, the Executive Committee says that in many metal works skilled laborers are getting only thirty-five cents each daily wages. In some works the maximum daily wages are but fifty cents. The poverty resulting from this state of affairs is augmented by the fluctuations of the Austrian currency and by the rise in prices. The formally announced programme of the congress is: organization, mutual insurance societies, the working day, institution of newspaper organs, labor and wages statistics.
According to the reports in the Chicago Herald, the miners at Spring Valley, Ill., are earning only about twenty-five dollars a month, and many of them cannot obtain employment at all. It has been noticed, however, that a miner with a good-looking wife can get a position where others are refused.
Two stone-cutters who had been denied membership in the Newark Stone-cutters' Association, and who in consequence could not obtain employment, sought relief in court. The decision of the vice-chancellor was to the effect that voluntary associations cannot be forced to admit members whom they do not want, and also that, by a State statute passed in 1883, such organizations as the Stone-cutters' Union are unlawful.
To increase its circulation among the laborers, the Lancashire Weekly promises £100 cash contribution towards the election expenses of a Labor candidate to the next Parliament. If the candidate so backed is elected, the journal will contribute an additional £5 weekly towards his living expenses during the time he remains in Parliament, provided the circulation of the paper in question increases to 15 000. If the circulation reaches 25,000, it will support a second candidate on the same terms. The only condition is that the candidates shall be supported by a Lancashire constituency, and the man himself must belong to the Labor party or to the Liberals pledged to support Labor principles.
The London dock companies have issued notices that they intend to cancel the agreement with the Dockers' Union, expiring Nov. 3d. They will only employ free men thereafter, and ignore the Union and its leaders.
The expected strike of the Vienna tramway employees began Oct. 20th. The service is suspended. The tramway stations are occupied by the police, and the troops are held under arms in the barracks, in readiness for any emergency.
There are recorded in the French savings banks and postal banks 6,500,000 depositors, representing $518,000,000.
Official statistics show that 100,000 persons are out of employment in Lombardy, 60,000 in Piedmont, and 50,000 in Romagna and Southern Italy.
Gen. Booth, the chief of the Salvation Army, estimates that at least one tenth of the population of England is in need of assistance. In his book, "In Darkest England," he proposes a scheme for the relief of this "submerged tenth." The project is to collect £1,000,000 for the establishment of farms and houses for the pau