Obrázky stránek
PDF
ePub

as the “vanguard of the German army," and noted that quantities of munitions were being landed for the White Guards from German submarines. Indeed, about the time of the German landing the White Guard leaders threw off the mask. On March 1 of this year the White Guard Prime Minister sent a long telegram to the German Chancellor (which was printed in the White Guard press) lauding the Kaiser and his “victorious troops," and thanking Germany“ for all she has done for our Finnish chasseurs, who three years ago voluntarily entered the German army.

A typical expression of White Guard opinion is contained in an editorial that appeared on March 8, on the eve of the German landing, in “Valkonen Suomi” (White Finland), the official White Guard organ, published at Vasa. It reads:

HAIL, GERMANS ! Friends, allies ! Welcome to our shores ! You, Germans, have been our teachers in the arts of war. And when the terrible trial of strength with arms and all means began between the nations, our most enthusiastic young

hurried to you to learn, while battling in your ranks, the glorious art of victory.

We come to your side as allies, friends. We have seen that in this battle of nations your, and only your, arms have opened ways to freedom for oppressed nations. Your steely strength has

smashed and will further smash the powers of the egotistic nations of rulers and oppressors.

The Red Guards, a volunteer force of Finns poorly armed and more poorly fed, put up a stubborn resistance, but proved no match for the well-equipped German war machine. Finland is another small nation fallen into the clutches of the German power. But, as the Finnish Junkers well know, only a German victory in the war and a German peace can make permanent the results of their unholy alliance with Germany. The producing classes of Finland, the great mass of the people, strongly organized in every town and village, highly literate, trained in twelve years of parliamentary achievement, will never rest until they have cast off the incubus of German-White Guard rule and re-established, under the more favorable conditions of a world purged of Junkerdom, the ordered progress of that demo cratic evolution for which they have so valiantly striven. Though the Germans and their White Guard allies are utilizing the system of Sulla—the system of proscription lists and wholesale murder--to enthrone autocracy in Finland, they cannot kill off enough of the inhabitants to crush the desire of the Finnish people for a co-operative democracy in which neither social, economic, nor political exploitation has place.

peace and

[ocr errors]

APPRECIATION FROM ENGLAND You have been saving wheat and meat and fats and sugar at your table. You have not thought of this as an act of very great self-sacrifice. You have been glad to do it because your country, through Mr. Hoover, has asked you to do it. Perhaps you have wondered whether it was worth while, whether it has had any effect. You can hardly remain in doubt about this when you read the following statement. Harold Begbie is a London journalist who has a special acquaintance with the poor of London. His book “ Twice-Born Men” has had very wide circulation because it is a human and vivid description of the transformation that often takes place in human life; and his later book, “ The Little That is Good,” is equally graphic as a picture of the London underworld, showing some of its best side. The article which we here reprint from the London Daily Chronicle is an appreciation of what America has done. We know what has happened about food at this end. This article tells us what the result has been at the other end. Such appreciation is inspiring and is a stimulus for us to go on and do what Mr. Hoover is asking us to do. AMERICA'S SELF-SACRIFICE: A MORAL DEMONSTRATION

BY HAROLD BEGBIE NE of the finest moral actions in this war has been done other side of the American continent, though five thousand miles

by America. It is action on a gigantic scale, and yet of away from the battlefields of France.

a directly personal character. Insufficient publicity, I But the citizens of America do not ask such questions. With think, has been given to this action.

a cheerfulness and a courage which are as vigorous as their Is it realized by the people of this country that America has industry, and with a moral earnestness which is by far the already saved us from capitulating to the enemy? Either we greatest demonstration America has yet given to the world of should have been forced into this surrender (with our armies American character, these people so far away from us on the unbroken and our munitions of war unexhausted) or we should other side of the Atlantic have willingly and with no coercion at this moment be struggling to live and work and fight on one- by the state denied themselves for the sake of the Entente. third of our present rations.

They are going short, they are going hungry, for our sakes. America is sending to these islands almost two-thirds of our They are practicing an intimate self-sacrifice in order that we food supplies. Sixty-five per cent of the essential foodstuffs

may hold our own till their sons come to fight at our side. All eaten by the British citizen comes to him from the American over America the individual American citizen is making this continent. This in itself is something which calls for our lively self-sacrifice, and making it without a murmur. He is feeding, gratitude. But there is a quality in the action of America which by his personal self-sacrifice, not only these islands, but France, should intensify our gratitude. For these American supplies, Italy, and many of the neutrals. essential to our health

and safety, represent in very large meas- This great demonstration of character has had no other imure the personal and voluntary self-sacrifice of the individual petus than the simple declaration of the facts by Herbert Hoover, American citizen. They are not crumbs from the table of Dives. the man who fed Belgium. Hoover has told his countrymen They are not the commandeered supplies of an autocratic how things stand. That is all. The winter of 1918, he declared government. They represent, rather, the kindly, difficult, to them, will prove to mankind whether or not the American and entirely willing self-sacrifice of a whole Nation, the vast Nation“ is capable of individual self-sacrifice to save the world.” majority of whom are working people.

His propaganda has never descended to unworthy levels. He There is only one altar for this act of sacrifice—it is the table has appealed always to the conscience of his countrymen. He of the American working classes. And the rite is performed by has spoken of “a personal obligation upon every one of us men, women, and children, at every meal of the day, day after towards some individual abroad who will suffer privation to the day, week after week.

extent of our own individual negligence.

America has answered this appeal in a manner which marks

her out as one of the greatest moral forces in the world. It This act of self-sacrifice, let us remember, is made in the should be known out there, in the farm houses and cottages midst of plenty. Well might the American housewife ask why of the American continent, that the people of this country, she should deprive her children of food, why she should insti- tightening their belts and confronting the future with an indetute wheatless and meatless days, when all about her there is a structible confidence, are mindful of America's self-sacrifice, visible superabundance of these things. Questions such as these and are grateful to her men and women and children for their are natural enough on the other side of the Atlantic, and on the self-sacrifice-self-sacrifice which will save the world.

THE CHEERFUL GIVER

THE ADMINISTRATION :· AN APPRAISAL

PERSONNEL, POLITICS, AND RED TAPE

I

A view of the Administration from the inside is one which only a person on the inside can have and can reproduce for others. Such a view is that which is presented in the following article. For obvious reasons one on the inside who gives such a view with frankness cannot let his identity become publicly known. It is sufficient to say that the writer of this article.is in a position of responsibility in one of the branches of the Government's service.- THE EDITORS.

F there is one question which meets the man from Washing. tinuously suit his action to the words with which he rebukes ton wherever he turns in this wide country, if there is one those who introduce him at Liberty Loan rallies as Our next

question for which everybody, from the Cabinet officer to President;" and that Mr. Wilson will so stretch his theory of the chance visitor who has spent twenty-four hours fighting for political responsibility as to avail himself of at least a few hotel accommodations in the District of Columbia, is supposed capable Republican executives. It is a Nation which is in arms to have an illuminating answer ready, it is : “ Well, how do now, not a party, and the Administration can satisfy the counthings seem to be going at Washington ?” People from Port try only by meeting the issue in the largest spirit. land, Maine, to Portland, Oregon, want to know whether the heart of the Nation is sound. The public, to be sure, has heard

II the verdicts of innumerable heart specialists, but their diversity It is not, however, these aspects of the Administration that is confusing. Doctor Chamberlain laments that the patient has demand primary consideration. Here are the questions that cry heart failure; Doctor Sherman reports heart disease brought most persistently for honest answers : Are the leaders at Washon by the microbes of Socialism; Doctor Creel and others ington making good ? Is progress being delayed by red tape ? assure us that never in history was there such an active heart, Is there team-work and generalship? Is our strategy thoughtand if it has skipped a beat here and there, why, any normal fully directed and effectively converted into action ? Let us heart is subject to such syncopation. And a multitude of lesser take up these questions in turn. specialists bring from Washington their conflicting diagnoses. None is more difficult to answer with even an approximatia If most of these judgments, based upon third or fourth hand of justice, and none is more frequently dismissed with glib and information, are colored by the memory of a tiff with a bureau irresponsible answers, than the question of personnel. The best chief here or a contract satisfactorily placed there, and if the one can do in the space of a page or two is to convey general findings of the press reveal a general impression that it is the impressions based on pretty well established evidence. function of a Republican to pick faults and of a Democrat to The men to whom the President has delegated the most imcondone them, then perhaps there is some reason for an ob- posing war duties are the Secretary of War, the Secretary of server who for many months has watched the Governmental the Navy, the Chairman of the Shipping Board, the Food Admachine from the inside to try to make an honest administrative ministrator, and the Secretary of the Ťreasury and Directoraudit.

General of Railroads. To include Mr. Hurley, Mr. Hoover, I

and Mr. McAdoo in the group with Mr. Baker and Mr. DanWe shall do well, first of all, to take note of a condition so iels is to acknowledge the fact that the number of men we can apparent that we are likely to overlook its significance. The put in France depends chiefly on our production of ships; that Administration is honest. Even its harshest critics admit with the submarine is still the greatest single menace that confronts little question the unimpeachable character of the men about us; and that our peculiar geographical situation renders the the President. So thoroughly do we take this fact for granted problems of food, transportation, and finance of virtuall; equal that it is only when we hear the rumbling of the Bolo Pasha importance with those of manning and munitioning our Army storm that we remember to be thankful for things which have and Navy. been as universal in Washington as loyalty and integrity. The Secretary of War, whose first great task (that of Profiteering there undoubtedly has been, and at the present mobilization and construction) has now settled down to routine writing the Borglum charges of graft in aircraft production, performance, and whose second great task (that of strategie while generally discredited, are not yet disproved; but on the direction and of adaptation of war machinery to the changing whole graft has been isolated and promptly punished. The cases demands of strategy) has hardly begun, has been for many against the advisory committees of the Council of National months a storm center. In many things Mr. Baker has learned Defense, which made such a stir early in the winter, came to slowly. His stubbornness in resisting the idea of a centralized nothing. There have been charges of favoritism, or worse, as is control of purchasing, for example, has been exasperating ; his inevitable when billions of dollars are being rapidly spent and conduct when under fire by Congress early in the winter was opportunities for illegal profit are rife; but Congressional in- that of an agile, almost slippery, politician. But he has suffered vestigating committees have not yet, so far as the writer knows, a sea change since that first unfortunate appearance before the discovered a single willful misappropriation of the public funds. Senate Committee on Military Affairs. To the praise long due

Political profiteering, never so easy to detect with certainty, him, especially for his far-sighted intelligence in industrial has been, on the whole, less prevalent than one might have had matters and for the wisdom which led to the creation of his reason to fear. The President has been widely criticised for Commission on Training Camp Activities, must now be added choosing his counselors almost exclusively from his own party praise for his admirable attitude toward Congress and for and for neglecting to utilize the services of men like Colonel several notable appointments, especially those of Assistant Sec Roosevelt-a policy built squarely upon Mr. Wilson's theory of retary Stettinius, General Goethals, and General March. No party government. Every one who believes that party politics better men could have been selected to solve his major problems, divert time, effort, and enthusiasm from the winning of the war and the tonic influence of their energy has already made itself disapproves Mr. Wilson's entrance into the recent Wisconsin felt. Mr. Baker's critics are now made up chiefly of those who campaign and his sending Democratic leaders to stump the cannot forgive him his preference for peace and his unwilling. State on behalf of Mr. Davies. But, granted the difficulty of get- ness to favor universal military training. He is still on trial, ting working results from a coalition Cabinet under a Constitu- and his Department has many mistakes to answer for ; but he tion such as ours, partisanship has not, on the whole, gone far. is perhaps the keenest and most thorough student of the war in Fairness compels one to take into account the absolute disregard the Cabinet, and he shows every day a stronger knowledge of of party lines in the awarding of commissions in the Army and Navy, and of positions in most of our special war-making de- Mr. Daniels is making good to an extent incredible to those partments. The real test of non-partisan Nationalism, however, who have for years made him the butt of the Administration. has not yet arrived; it will come in the summer and autumn, He has the most efficient department in Washington. To when the elections are impending. One hopes that the Wiscon- do business with the Navy Department is to find the right sin mistake will not be repeated; that Mr. McAdoo will con- man readily and to receive prompt and thorough satisfaction.

his job.

Perhaps Mr. Franklin Roosevelt, his Assistant Secretary, is tion, if Congress ever gives it a chance to live, will not justify chiefly responsible; perhaps we may thank the great tradition its existence unless Mr. Frankfurter, who has been appointed of the Navy; yet, at any rate, despite a certain smallness of to the direction of it, is given a free hand to build up the intellectual stature, despite a personality which lends itself to machinery the absence of which until the spring of 1918 has been ridicule, Mr. Daniels has got results, and it would not be right in itself a mark of Secretary Wilson's chief shortcoming. Mr. to deny him credit for the fact that his Department has won Frankfurter is known to be a brilliant and sympathetic student little but praise from Congress and the country during more of labor conditions and knows his subject thoroughly; his than a year of war. Because the Navy works so quietly we some- executive capacity is still to be tested. One is curious to know times forget its prime importance. The undeniable fact is that whether he will be able to introduce efficiency into the Labor the Navy is on the job and that Mr. Daniels is serving the Nation Department, where it has been so notoriously a stranger. wisely and well.

The failures of the Secretary of Agriculture, like those of Mr. Hurley, Chairman of the Shipping Board, has not the the Secretary of Labor, have been the somewhat inconspicuous qualities of greatness. There has been some question whether but very grave failures of omission rather than of commission. he would prove competent to manage the most gigantic indus- Mr. Houston shares with Mr. Hoover the duty of feeding the trial undertaking of all time. The Shipping Board made a bad world. Mr. Hoover's province is distribution, conservation, and start. Mr. Hurley, when he was appointed last August, found regulation ; Mr. Houston's, production. The contrast has been himself handicapped at the outset by a badly organized depart- distinct. One has faced the facts, spoken without evasion, and ment and confronted by a series of imposing obstacles. For all acted without hesitation. The other has steadily discounted the his shrewdness and hard sense, it has looked more than once as gravity of his task, has disposed of the imposing farm labor if he were not himself aware of the staggering size of the ship problem chiefly by saying that no labor shortage exists, and has building programme that is needed to win the war. Even now, generally let things drag. The farmers distrust Mr. Houston's although we are turning out ships with constantly increasing optimism, and with reason. The voice with the smile may win speed, Mr. Hurley is still on trial. But his appointment of Mr. over the telephone, but it will not help feed a hungry world. Schwab to head the Emergency Fleet Corporation is a good Mr. Houston is quietly proving himself one of the Administra angury, and he has recently been encouragingly free from that tion's liabilities. disingenuous optimism which is the curse of Government offi- Of the second group, Mr. Baruch, although his qualifications cials. If he breaks under the strain, it is only because the work for the chairmanship of the War Industries Board are not of bridging the seas calls for a giant, and Mr. Hurley is merely those of large administrative experience, has shown shrewdness an active and level-headed business man. He and Mr. Schwab and imagination, and it looks as if he would be capable of need all the wisdom and energy of the country behind them. doing all that can be done to give the War Industries Board

Mr. Hoover has held for nearly a year a position that would something at least of the character of a Munitions Departseem a guarantee of unpopularity. The political life of food ment. Already it has gained vastly in importance, and Mr. administrators has been short in most belligerent countries. Baruch is steadily accumulating prestige and power. Mr. All the more remarkable, therefore, is Mr. Hoover's continuing Vance McCormick's War Trade Board has the weaknesses of prestige. His fearlessness, his openness of mind, his unusual a child who has grown too fast. In less than a year it has expersonal magnetism, and his astonishing imaginative grasp of panded from nothing at all to a truly portentous size ; yet, under his great problem impress every man who has the fortune to the circumstances, Mr. McCormick and his associates have come into contact with him. It is perhaps a coincidence that acquitted themselves fairly well. Not so much can be said for the only man selected from outside the Democratic party for a the Fuel Administration and the Chairman of the Committee primary administrative place is by general consent the greatest on Public Information. The writer does not feel himself com man at Washington (leaving Mr. Wilson out of consideration). petent to judge the economic wisdom of the famous fuel order Mr. Hoover has been criticised for not making compulsory of last winter; but, despite Dr. Garfield's admirable firmness of many measures of conservation which up to this time have only character and his ability as a harmonizer of men, there is a genbeen voluntary; but he has accomplished big things in a big eral impression that the responsibility for warming our houses spirit, and we may be thankful for him.

and factories should be given next winter to some man with Mr. McAdoo is still something of a puzzle. He seems to have more experience in the very complex science of transportation, done good work in the Treasury, and he is undoubtedly a man rather than kept in the hands of a man who has gained through of great astuteness ; but his capacity as a railway chief is not his own actions the general reputation of a bungler. And Mr. yet proved, and altogether there is a tendency in Washington Creel is clearly not up to his job. Courage, honesty, and a living to feel that he has bitten off more than he can chew. His great- faith in democracy are not alone sufficient qualifications for the est weakness would seem to be a tendency to play a lone hand. direction of our National publicity when they are coupled with It is said that his opposition has delayed the creation of a War administrative inexperience, unconscious partisanship, lack of Cabinet ; he wishes neither to participate in it nor to be domi- tact and discretion, and a hot-tempered impulsiveness bordering nated by it. It is certain that the Treasury Department has on petulance. Mr. Creel has by no means deserved all the abuse had a tendency to resist plans for co-ordination which involve flung at him, and his problem is far more difficult than it concessions on its own part.

appears on superficial examination. There are plenty of men, The remaining leaders of the Administration fall into two however, who could conduct the affairs of the Committee on groups—those in the old Cabinet and those who occupy new Public Information more wisely than he. war positions.

With the mention of Dr. Garfield and Mr. Creel the list of Of the former group, Mr. Lansing's mediocrity happily does men at the top comes to an end. Others there are, but they not matter, since for all practical purposes the President is his are either less important, or are responsible to some one of the own very admirable Secretary of State ; Mr. Lane, the most administrators included in the list instead of directly to the popular man in the Cabinet, has few war duties, having been President. apparently out of Presidential favor in recent months; the The list we have considered is conspicuous for its unevenness. Postmaster-General, the Attorney-General, and the Secretary It includes men who are indisputably doing well, like Mr. of Commerce have a relatively small share in the prosecution Hoover and Mr. Daniels ; men whose ability is subject to of the war. The critical points are apparently the portfolios dispute, but looks fairly well assured, like Mr. McAdoo, Mr. of Labor and Agriculture.

Hurley, and Mr. Baruch; at least one man who is slowly Mr. W. B. Wilson is a man of rugged character and holds weathering a storm and may be expected to gain in strength and the confidence of Labor, but his department has been woefully prestige Mr. Baker; and perhaps four men who are open to weak in personnel ; and his administrative incapacity is shown the charge of inadequacy- Dr. Garfield, Mr. Houston, Mr. by his failure to build up anything in the nature of a War W. B. Wilson, and Mr. Creel. Labor Administration until precious long months had dragged Mention should be made of several new subordinate execut by and the Council of National Defense had prepared a com- tives of whom we may expect the best-Mr. Schwab, Directorprehensive programme and submitted it to him by way of the General of the Emergency Fleet Corporation ; QuartermasterPresident. It is safe to say that this W'ar Labor Administra- General Goethals; Assistant Secretary of War Stettinius; and

Mr. Ryan, Director of Aircraft Production. It is significant Service, valuable as they have proved in the past as a weapon that these four men are in positions where there is a maximum against political patronage, are now the cause of more profanity requirement of constructive business ability and a minimum in Washington than all the bunkers at the Chevy Chase links requirement of policy-making. The most difficult positions to put together. Most departments may not engage clerks or fill are those which require both executive capacity and wisdom stenographers except from the Civil Service list. It is illegal to in the formulation of policies--two qualities which do not often transfer an employee from one department to another at an go hand in hand, but are both essential to success in government increase in salary. The Government is lavish with holidays administration. College presidents, labor leaders, and writers even in war time, and the Civil Service employees leave every are likely to lack the one; big business men are likely to lack afternoon at 4:30; and while one may force them to stay overthe other. Mr. Hoover happily combines them ; Mr. Daniels time, the law forbids one either to pay them extra for so doing or seems to have acquired them both; Mr. Baker has one and is to compensate them by excusing them from work during regular delegating the other to his new assistants ; Messrs. Houston, hours. In other words, if something must be done quickly, one Garfield, W. B. Wilson, and Creel do not seem to possess the cannot either pick up a staff of clerks outside (unless one pays combination. One should not forget in considering President for them personally) or keep one's regular employees working Wilson's appointments the absolute necessity of filling the chief all night and excuse them the next day. Such laws protect the positions with men whose policies will be adjusted to those of worker in such an inelastic way that they do not allow emerthe President and the Cabinet. One neeď not forget this condi gency jobs to be done in emergency fashion. The writer has tion, however, to wish that certain changes might be made with known of a National enrollment campaign being delayed for out delay.

days after the appointed time, while the employees who were

packing and mailing the necessary cards put on their hats and Any analysis of administrative efficiency must, to be thorough, went home each afternoon at 4:30. The Civil Service reguladeal not only with the men at the top, but reach down to a con tions were responsible. sideration of the fabric of the organization under them. We A second hedge which keeps the Government official from hear a lot about Governmental red tape, a term of general con taking a short cut is the department regulation intended to prodemnation. What is the nature of its entanglements, and how mote sound organization, or to fix responsibility, or to bring about are they to be swept away ?

co-ordination. For instance, a department may buy supplies We may as well define“ red tape" as the following of formal only through its purchasing division-usually the chief clerk's methods of Governmental procedure which are not adapted to the office. A reasonable regulation ; it prevents the scattering of end in view. In time of war everybody ought to take the short orders and saves money. But to what abuses is it not subjected! est cut possible toward his object. Why, then, do officials persist Suppose a chief clerk is overwhelmed by a rush of business

. in following the old roundabout paths beaten by tradition ? * All right, go out and buy it yourself,” says the new executive

One does not have to remain long in the Government service to his assistant when he hears this, " and we will settle with the to discover the nature of the hedges which line these paths. chief clerk later.” But the Treasury does not honor charges Most of them are laws; good laws for peace time, perhaps, laws made by unauthorized individuals; and so executives frequently intended to prevent some abuse of power, but obstructive laws have to pay out of their own pockets for filing cabinets or for war time.

desks or stationery which are needed in a hurry, or else have The layman seldom realizes in what detail the procedure of to wait perhaps for weeks. The number of official O. K.'s Government departments is dictated by Congressional regula- needed for an individual in the War Department to pick up a tion. Such and such money may be spent only in such and such a typewriter or a package of pens for his office would make a way, and only by such and such a bureau and subject to such and business man turn white. The trouble, as is usually evident, is such special provisions; to some executives it seems as if Con not so much with the rules themselves as with the fact that, gress didn't wish to give them room to turn round in, so closely like chains, their strength is that of their weakest link. If every has it fenced them in. Many a break in the fences has been man is in his place, a swift-footed clerk can get the O. K.'s in made by the passage of the Overman Bill; but there are plenty half an hour of fast traveling. If one is away and another is a of regulations left which restrict freedom of executive action. week behind in his work, the process is not so rapid. A single

Here is a single example: No executive department may stubborn officer, a single chief clerk brought up in the leisurely have any printing done elsewhere than at the Government Print tradition of Government service and jealous of his authority, a ing Office. A sensible regulation for 1895, 1905, or 1915, no single official with inadequate clerical help, can hold up a war doubt; it kept a profitable field clear of the grafter and made measure for weeks. Couple this situation with the difficulty of Government printing a standardized enterprise. But in 1918, securing emergency employees under the Civil Service laws, and with the millions of Selective Service questionnaires, the millions one gets a notion of the inflexibility of Government machinery. of Liberty Loan and War Savings and War Trade Board blanks Again, the number of officials who have to approve a given and leaflets and circulars, and millions of folders and pamphlets bulletin or document is appalling to the newcomer in adminis being turned out under pressure by a score of departments and trative life. He wishes to send out an order. His superior sub-departments, the Printing Office, large and efficient as it is, must O. K. it, and perhaps the head of the department, and has been swamped. There have been times when it has been usually it must also be approved by the heads of other departnecessary to wait days, or even weeks, because the presses were ments which might conceivably be affected by it. “Red tape!" full of War Department material. “Red tape!" cries the new cries the newcomer again. But he discovers that Governmental Government official when he hears that the Printing Office will responsibility has to be more carefully guarded than that of a take a week to print fifty thousand blanks; “take the order to private firm. His order is an order of the United States Gov. Philadelphia to night and find a private firm that will do it in ernment. It must conform to Federal policy. If it affects another two days!” The law will not allow it. The official knows how department, that department must be consulted, or what kind many months it would take for an appeal to Congress to bear of team-work would we have? Suppose the Shipping Board fruit, and how ready an investigating committee would be to issued an order concerning the employment of non-union carleap on him for breaking the law. He fumes—and waits for the penters without consulting the Labor Department; or suppose G. P. O.

Dr. Garfield authorized the policy of shipping coal to the port Such restrictions are everywhere. The writer knows of a of New York without coming to an agreement with the Inter Government bureau which could not get its windows washed national Ship Control Committee, the Quartermaster-General for some time last summer because the necessary mops were not the Director-General of Railroads, the War Industries Board, on the list of supplies which the department was authorized to and the Director of Operations of the Shipping Board, all of buy on its appropriation. A carefully devised law prevents the whom are intimately concerned. Red tape? Rather is this a Government from advancing money for traveling expenses, and brave struggle toward co-ordination. there is at least one Government office from which agents go on Yet such co-ordination takes time. If there are five men to trips of several thousand miles, funds for which have to be put consult, the plan cannot go into operation until the fifth has up by wealthy members of the department, who are later seen and approved it. If the five are to be brought together reimbursed by the Treasury. The restrictions of the Civil in a meeting, the meeting has to be timed to meet their

convenience-frequently delayed three or four days while one of ical capital out of trifling transgressions of statutes by Governthem is out of town. If they are approached separately, they are ment officials. Perhaps if the Administration takes Congress likely to make such alterations in the plan that by the time the more thoroughly into its confidence we can expect Congress to fifth has wielded his blue pencil it must go back to the first understand that the best way to get legal red tape out of the again for reapproval. Such a contingency is amusing, and way is to break through it. worse; it puts important Government work at the mercy of a For the weeding out of the incompetent we must rely on the single inefficient or obstinate executive.

judgment and courage of their administrative superiors, assisted Red tape, then, simmers down, upon analysis, to three chief perhaps by a general discouragement of the volunteer system, sources of inefficiency: First, archaic laws; second, incompetent which, although it has saved the Government much money by men in places where they cause a disproportionate amount of securing it the services of numerous fifty-thousand-dollar men delay; and, third, a system of Government organization so cum- for a dollar a year, has also secured it the less valuable service bersome that the only way to achieve even the semblance of of others who are now embarrassingly difficult to dismiss. Posunity is by running from department to department and getting sibly the weeding-out process would be more speedy if a central a series of official approvals for a given measure.

administrative body were set up directly under the President, It is idle to expect Congress to make appreciable headway to combine with other functions a function similar to that of the against archaic laws, and it is probably just as well to let the laws present Efficiency Bureau, but with the power which it lacks. stand, so that they may be enforced in case of manifest abuses. The consideration of such a possibility brings us squarely up The wisest plan is to let the laws drift into a state of tempo against the whole problem of organization. The Overman Act rary non-enforcement and to rely upon the Congressional inves- has cleared the way for a great deal of necessary reorganization, tigating committees to look the other way. The only other but the war machine still lacks unity ; it still has to get along alternative is delay in the prosecution of the war. We must all with that unacceptable substitute, co-ordination. What can we ask ourselves honestly when an infraction of law is discovered, do to make over our higgledy-piggledy assortment of virtually “Was this step unnecessary, or did it speed up war work ?" disconnected departments and bureaus into a single effective Partisans must learn to let slip opportunities for making polit- administrative machine ?

The question with which the author concludes this article he discusses in another article to be published next week

RUINS

BY CHARLES HANSON TOWNE
They sat‘at supper in a shadowy room.

And Rheims-it shall be doubly beautiful
“ But you,” she said, “ you are an artist! You

With a new meaning through the centuries,
Deplore this tearing down of all our dreams!

Hushed with its memories of this dark hour.”
You know that war is shattering the world,
And beauty falls in ashes at her feet."

Her face grew grave. “You dare to tell me this !

You say a ruin is more wonderful
He looked at her, full-blown and glorious,

Than the

pure dream the architect once dreamed ?" With flaming eyes and tossed, abundant hair. “How I abhor this hour !” he softly said.

“ I cannot answer. But one thing I know:

Men rush across the seas to catch one glimpse
“ I never thought the world could come to this.

Of fallen fanes and tottering columns. Yes,
Yet always through the years the flame of war,
Like a long crimson serpent, has crept and crept,

They fare through desolate places that their eyes

May rest at last on crumbling marble .... See !
And poisoned all the beauty that we built.

Those men and women rise and we must rise
The Parthenon was stricken by the blast

To pay our tribute to that noble man
Of cruel cannon in disastrous days;

Who has come back, a ruin from the war.”
Yet in the moonlight it is wonderful
In a strange way the mind can never name.

She turned. There was a soldier at the door;
And strong barbarian hordes tore down that dream, And one sleeve of his uniform hung limp,
The Colosseum; and manly Romans wept.

And there were many scars upon his cheeks.
Yet it is lovelier on soft summer nights

“ A ruin,” the artist whispered. “Yet he seems
Than ever it must have been in the young years.

The only whole and perfect man I know!"

BILLY CROWTHER ENLISTS

BY ELMER E. FERRIS

66

[ocr errors]

ENNIE CROWTHER stepped to the window and gazed anxiously across the park. She had been doing this every

few moments for the past hour, although she was well aware that her husband, Pete, would probably not arrive until his usual time, upon the 6:45 train. When he finally appeared at the entrance to the park, she breathed a sigh of relief. He saw her at the window and waved his hand. This was one of his glad moments of the week, when his wife appeared at the window on Saturday night.

"Do you remember," said he, as he entered the doorway and greeted her with a kiss,“ when Billy was a little boy, he always stood there at the window on Saturday night, and when he saw me he would rush out and tell me what we were going to have for supper? And now the kid is a senior in the university! Time steps along, doesn't it, Jen?"

His wife nodded her head sadly. “Yes," replied she; “it seems only yesterday when Billy was a baby in my arms.

Pete noticed the look of anxiety upon his wife's face.

What's the matter, Jen ?” he asked. “Any bad news ?“No, not exactly. But I had a letter from Billy this morning that makes me feel uneasy."

She went to the writing-desk and brought out the letter. “ Read it, Pete, dear, and tell me what you think,” she said.

Pete seated himself and read the letter carefully. It ran as follows: Dearest Mother :

I neglected you a little this week, but I have been pretty busy with extra matters. This war is turning the University upside down. About 150 students have already gone into the service. Most of them enlisted. Our country won't have any cause to complain about the patriotism of the college men. I see that about 30,000 have already enlisted from the different colleges. The war spirit is strong here. There are a few pro-Germans, but they are keeping their mouths shut. Ten fellows have gone from our fraternity. The University has started a class in mili

« PředchozíPokračovat »