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ties on Protection, Imperialism, or For- and Mr. Bryan again as a Liberal, and eign Policy, the three largest issues they have been thoroughly beaten upon clearly within the federal power. each platform. It is difficult to believe 'Upon control of transport and the curb- that any party, in a live electorate like ing of industrial and financial illegali- that of the United States, can survive ties the promises of the one party do so hopeless a record. Unless a thornot in principle transcend the perforin- oughly radical reconstruction can take ances of the other. The Republican place, it is hardly possible that the Party upon the whole has displayed Democratic Party can avoid displacemore consistency and more stability of ment before 1912 by some new, more purpose.
The Democrats have now virile, alignment of the reforming tried Mr. Bryan as financial revolution- forces of the people. ist, Judge Parker as a Conservative,
THE REPUBLICAN TRIUMPH.
The victory of Mr. Roosevelt's policy and candidate has proved more complete than their most ardent supporters had hoped. The South, with the exception of Maryland, has remained true to its ancient Democratic traditions, and Oklahoma, which has been mainly peopled from States where Populism was strong, has not been diverted from supporting Mr. Bryan by Mr. Hearst's revelations as to the corrupt relations of its Governor with the Standard Oil monopolists. Mr. Bryan has carried his own State of Nebraska; he has come near to carrying a few other Western States of minor importance with silver or Populist traditions, such as Nevada, Montana, and possibly Indiana. But elsewhere his defeat is crushing. The Republicans have regained Maryland, have kept West Virgina and other doubtful States, and, above all, have held the pivotal State of New York. That is a welcome triumph over Tammany, and a victory for the rural districts and smaller cities, which are more or less Puritan in their views, over the more worldly tendencies of the chief city of the Union, with its large foreign, ignorant, and corrupt or corruptible electorate. The American public gen
erally will be all the healthier for the election of Mr. Hughes, and the consequent check to one of the least desirable phases of sport. Elsewhere local conditions have unexpectedly favored the election of isolated Democratic Congressmen and Governors, but this only emphasizes the Republican victory on the Federal issue. There the defeat of the Democrats is definitive and complete. The Republicans carry 30 States out of 46; in the Electoral College, which conducts the formal election, they have 314 votes against 16:9; and Mr. Taft's majority of the whole electorate is estimated at 1,113,750.
Mr. Taft's election has from the first been regarded as certain, provided that none of the numerous cross-currents set up during the election should sweep away an appreciable number of the apathetic sections of the electorate. The Democratic party was saddled with a candidate who, though personally attractive, gifted with great oratorical powers, and astonishingly energetic, could not possibly combine the Radical and Populist sections of the party in the West and its old Con. servative elements in parts of the East and South. Mr. Bryan, though sound
from our point of view on tariff revision, was weighted with other and unsound economic traditions. The “emergency currency" of the Democratic platform suggested silver or illimitable greenbacks rather than a safe expansion of the secured note issue of the national banks: and the wind had been taken out of his sails in advance by Mr. Roosevelt's speeches in the West last year, and by the certainty that something would be attempted by the Republicans towards tariff reduction and towards checking the domination of the Trusts.
From a business point of view, it is impossible not to welcome the result. Mr. Bryan could have done nothing to abate the economic evils which undoubtedly exist in the United States. Labor grievances are matter for State, not Federal, legislation; really etfective control of the unscrupulous capitalists and speculators would require either amendments of the Federal Constitution or a departure by the Supreme Court from the strictly juristic spirit which has made it the chief glory of the United States, and all Mr. Bryan's nominations to that body would have been viewed with profound suspicion in the light of the Democratic project, entertained in 1896, of appointing judges who would reverse the decision which made an incometax impossible. Tariff revision under Democratic auspices would have been welcome, if carried out; but it would not have been practicable, and the attempt would only have repeated the prolonged unsettlement of business set up by the Wilson Bill in 1894. It is true that the business depression of
last year was not due to politics, but popular opinion in America is superficial on these matters, and the charges inade this year against President Roosevelt would have been repeated in an intensified form under President Bryan. What is more, they would have been generally believed, and some of his supporters would have done their best to confirm them. There would have been constant uncertainty, prolonged depression, and a fresh stimulus to the forces making for the quack remedies offered by Populism and Socialism. In foreign affairs, too, the results would have been productive of disappointment. Mr. Bryan's horizon has been considerably widened by study and travel since he first stood for the Presidency twelve years ago, but he is not an experienced administrator; the forces behind him represent the old American traditions tending to ignore foreign policy, and we doubt if he would have realized the mission of his Government in helping the backward States of Spanish America to "straighten out their finances," adjust their diferences by arbitration, and develop themselves with the aid of European Immigrants and American capital. Mr. Taft in this matter will fully carry on the Roosevelt tradition, and his diplomatic and administrative skill has been tested in the Philippines and at the War Office. He, at any rate, will be an efficient chief of the Executive. And we may hope that in 1912 the great Democratic party will have found a platform and a candidate that can restore its power to obtain tariff revision and other undoubtedly desirable ends.
MR. TAFT'S ELECTION.
The returns of the Presidential elec- is the policy initiated by Mr. Roosevelt. tion show that Mr. Taft's victory is and that is the policy which the Amerdecisive and overwhelming. His ma- ican people confidently expect Mr. Taft jority in the electoral college does ot to carry out. It is capable of being fall greatly short of Mr. Roosevelt's travestied as an attack upon Trusts, four years ago, and his majority of and in that character it has been copvotes, taking the country as a whole, is ied by Mr. Taft's opponents. During at least a round million. The Ameri- the contest every one was loud in procan people have given their decision testations of hostility to the Trusts, but upon the great issue before them with the people have been able to distinan emphasis that leaves nothing to be guish between the real and the factidesired. Their friends in this country, tious, between a genuine desire to abolwhere all are their friends, no longer ish evildoing and an opportunist debound by the reticence which courtesy nunciation of evildoers. Trusts, as Mr. dema nds of the spectators of a domes- Roosevelt has declared again and tie contest, are free to express pro- again, are not wholly and necessarily found satisfaction with their choice. bad, but compounded of good and evil Mr. Taft's dignified career, his unsul- like most things human. They will lied integrity, his strenuous public not be reformed by those who attack service, and his wide acquaintance them indiscriminately in the same with the conduct of great affairs spirit that produces their evil qualities. abroad as well as at home, mark him The evil in them can be dealt with out as exceptionally qualified to fill the by men inspired, not with hatred of great office to which he has been trusts, but with love of goodness and called. In addition to all these things, enlightened regard for the public weal. Mr. Taft stands for an intelligible and The people of America, plied from all wortby policy known to all men in sides with superficially similar promAmerica and throughout the world. It ises of reform, had to look beyond is before all things a policy of national words and to decide who was the man honesty, an endeavor to infuse into the best qualified by character, ability, exconduct of business on the great scale perience, and associations to carry out the principles upon which the over- genuine reform with quiet but persistwhelming majority of the people of the ent energy. They have made their United States regulate their personal choice alike decisively and wisely. affairs and their private lives. That
THE AMERICAN PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION.
Mr. Taft's victory at the end of four but it is also, we think, a triumph in months' furious campaigning is a much another sense for the American people more decisive one than the Republicans themselves. They have proved that expected or the Democrats feared. It they have grasped an intelligible policy is a strong national affirmation of the for conducting the external relations of Roosevelt policies. In that sense it is a the country, and for replacing corruptriumph for Mr. Roosevelt personally; tion by integrity at home; they may be mercurial, as is so often said, but they ful States except Nebraska. Eveu have plainly an underlying steadiness New York, which seemed to have given and persistence. Sensation, recrimi- itself over a few days ago to a coryban. nation, and the audacity of prophecy tic frenzy of Bryanism, declared for have in turn obscured the issue, or Mr. Taft. Altogether, Mr. Taft's mamade the result of the conflict between jority is a good round million in the Mr. Taft and Mr. Bryan seem to trem- country, and he has nearly as large a ble in the balance; but now that the majority as Mr. Roosevelt had four struggle is over, and the smoke has years ago in the Electoral College. cleared way, we see that the American Our readers of course understand that people stand very much where they the American people do not elect the did. What they appeared to want President directly, but choose electors, during Mr. Roosevelt's term of office who in their return record the name of they declare now that they still want. their nominee. What the choice of Mr. Roosevelt was the general who led the electors will be is perfectly well them to the position which they hold, known, for they are returned expressly 110:1, we believe, intend to go on hold- to make a certain choice. The formal ing, and he deserves the respect of election of Mr. Taft will not take place the whole world. He has the satis- till February, but there is no doubt faction of knowing that he will be suc- whatever that the result will corresceeded by an officer who has served pond in every respect to the elections well and faithfully on his staff, a man which are just over. Originally the of honor and decent ideals, but one en- theory was that the members of the dowed with the sense and moderation Electoral College should be simply men of the practical mind. From every of experience and independent judgpoint of view the prospect is encour- ment fit to choose a good President aging Mr. Bryan as President, we for the people. But in practice the are sure, would have been an unset- plan amounts to this, that no one would ting element in American life. He be returned as an elector who did not is eloquent and ingenious, but we dis- say whom he intended to choose as believe in his profundity and distrust President. Every elector is bound by his dexterity. Even the Democrats a pledge. were far from being blinded by his Mr. Bryan came nearest success rhetorical gifts--some Democrats were when with a silver tongue he was adhis uncompromising opponents and vocating the nostrum of free silver. now there is little doubt that his career It is of the essence of nostrums to be as a political force is ended. Three attractive, and Mr. Bryan seemed at defeats in Presidential Elections, in- one time likely to make Americans bedeed, mean annihilation. The Demo- lieve that their national health decrats must nominate a new candidate pended on accepting his particular nosif they would not again be "beaten to a trum The weakness of his profrazzle," as Mr. Roosevelt says. gramme in the recent election was that
Up to the last moment Mr. Bryan it simply plagiarized the Roosevelt poliprofessed to believe in that characteris- cies, and of course it said nothing about tic phenomenon of American voting, a silver. Both sides profess themselves landslide. But the earth remained now against the corruption of the firm. Such land as did detach itself Trusts, and the American citizen has from the scenery undoubtedly slid the to decide, not whose policy is right, wrong way, from Mr. Bryan's point of but who is more likely to see that it is view. Mr. Taft carried all the doubt. put into effect. It was said over and
over again during the campaign that he burst out to repudiate the disingenthe working men were outraged by Mr.
argument that because Mr. Roosevelt's stout personal denuncia- Rockefeller had publicly declared that tion of some of their leaders, and he would vote Republican, therefore would certainly vote for Mr. Bryan. Mr. Rockefeller had very good reason The President of the Labor Federation to know that Mr. Taft had no thought actually prophesied that eighty per of placing himself at the head of a cent of the votes of the Federation serious movement against the Trusts. would be cast for Mr. Bryan. It is The Trusts, indeed, are in all men's difficult to trace any such massive ininds. What will be done to reduce movement of Labor in the event. Mr. the corruptive license of powerful capRoosevelt declared, what we are sure italistic machinery? Will anything be is true, that Mr. Taft would be the done? Or can anything be done? truer friend of Labor, and apparently We have seen great corporations purthe working men, who do not owe a chasing themselves grossly illegal advery close allegiance to their organiza- vantages over their competitors, and, tions, believed him. It may be said when they are brought before the law, that the very active intervention of using their wealth again to play off Mr. Roosevelt in the campaign was un- Federal laws against State laws, till desirable, and there is a great deal in all possibility of penalty is lost in a the theory which disapproves of the labyrinth of technicalities and a sucinterference in free elections of persons cession of delays. We have seen Mr. occupying privileged positions. А Hearst reading letter after letter in wrong kind of influence may be public to prove that well-known polibrought thus into play, and this dan- ticians were in the pay of the Standard ger, of course, explains the British law Oil Company, the most powerful of all which denies a Peer of the realm the the Trusts. We do not underrate the right to take part in a Parliamentary difficulties of drawing the fangs of election. An indulgent view is gener- these dragons. The American Constially formed, as a matter of fact, of a tution is itself the greatest of all obPeer's intervention, as Mr. James Low- stacles in the way. It is so conservather used to be reminded annually to tive and so cumbrous,--so ill adapted his chagrin; and we suspect that a like to tackle problems quite unlike anyindulgence will generally be granted to thing that was foreseen when the ConMr. Roosevelt. His intervention has stitution was established Then the been characteristically impulsive, and Senate is a higher barrier, when it we think we might safely defy any one chooses to block any path, than any to say that it has not been sincere or l'pper House in the world.
In many honorable in motive. Really Jr. cases a two-thirds majority is needed, Roosevelt is so ardently anxious that and a little stubbornness or intrigue the public life of the United States makes that quite impossible to obshould match the respectability of pri- tain. Our best hope is that, as there vate life, and he believes so deeply is already a normal two-thirds Repubthat Mr. Taft, as a man and a politi- lican majority in the Senate, Mr. Taft cian, would be more likely than Mr. may be able to inspire it to good and Bryan to help the process of assimila- willing service. We should have had tion, that he has not been able to re- little hope if Mr. Bryan had been strain himself from declaring his heart elected, because he would indubitably whenever there was an opportunity. have been looked upon as the enemy There was one notorious episode when of commercial stability. In dealing