Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

That's French for "the ancient system," as in the ancient system of feudal privileges and the exercise of autocratic power over the peasants. The ancien regime never goes away, like vampires and dinosaur bones they are always hidden in the earth, exercising a mysterious influence. It is not paranoia to believe that the elites scheme against the common man. Inform yourself about their schemes here.

Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:54 am

Chapter X: Gloria Decides to Proselyte the Rich

While Philip was establishing himself in New York, as a social worker and writer, Gloria was spending more and more of her time in settlement work, in spite of the opposition of her family. Naturally, their work brought them much into each other’s society, and drew them even closer together than in Philip’s dark days when Gloria was trying to aid him in the readjustment of his life. They were to all appearances simply comrades in complete understanding, working together for a common cause.

However, Strawn’s opposition to Gloria’s settlement work was not all impersonal, for he made no secret of his worry over Gloria’s evident admiration for Dru. Strawn saw in Philip a masterly man with a prodigious intellect, bent upon accomplishing a revolutionary adjustment of society, and he knew that nothing would deter him from his purpose. The magnitude of the task and the uncertainties of success made him fear that Gloria might become one of the many unhappy women who suffer martyrdom through the greatness of their love.

Gloria’s mother felt the same way about her daughter’s companion in settlement work. Mrs. Strawn was a placid, colorless woman, content to go the conventional way, without definite purpose, further than to avoid the rougher places in life.

She was convinced that men were placed here for the sole purpose of shielding and caring for women, and she had a contempt for any man who refused or was unable to do so.

Gloria’s extreme advanced views of life alarmed her and seemed unnatural. She protested as strongly as she could, without upsetting her equanimity, for to go beyond that she felt was unladylike and bad for both nerves and digestion. It was a grief for her to see Gloria actually working with anyone, much less Philip, whose theories were quite upsetting, and who, after all, was beyond the pale of their social sphere and was impossible as a son-in-law.

Consequently, Philip was not surprised when one day in the fall, he received a disconsolate note from Gloria who was spending a few weeks with her parents at their camp in the hills beyond Tuxedo, saying that her father had flatly refused to allow her to take a regular position with one of the New York settlements, which would require her living on the East Side instead of at home. The note concluded:

“Now, Philip, do come up for Sunday and let’s talk it over, for I am sadly at variance with my family, and I need your assistance and advice.

“Your very sincere,

“Gloria.”

The letter left Dru in a strangely disturbed state of mind, and all during the trip up from New York his thoughts were on Gloria and what the future would bring forth to them both.

On the afternoon following his arrival at the camp, as he and the young woman walked over the hills aflame with autumnal splendor, Gloria told of her bitter disappointment. The young man listened in sympathy, but after a long pause in which she saw him weighing the whole question in his mind, he said: “Well, Gloria, so far as your work alone is concerned, there is something better that you can do if you will. The most important things to be done now are not amongst the poor but amongst the rich. There is where you may become a forceful missionary for good. All of us can reach the poor, for they welcome us, but there are only a few who think like you, who can reach the rich and powerful.

“Let that be your field of endeavor. Do your work gently and with moderation, so that some at least may listen. If we would convince and convert, we must veil our thoughts and curb our enthusiasm, so that those we would influence will think us reasonable.”


“Well, Philip,” answered Gloria, “if you really think I can help the cause, of course--”

“I’m sure you can help the cause. A lack of understanding is the chief obstacle, but, Gloria, you know that this is not an easy thing for me to say, for I realize that it will largely take you out of my life, for my path leads in the other direction.

“It will mean that I will no longer have you as a daily inspiration, and the sordidness and loneliness will press all the harder, but we have seen the true path, and now have a clearer understanding of the meaning and importance of our work.”

“And so, Philip, it is decided that you will go back to the East Side to your destiny, and I will remain here, there and everywhere, Newport, New York, Palm Beach, London, carrying on my work as I see it.”

They had wandered long and far by now, and had come again to the edge of the lofty forest that was a part of her father’s estate. They stood for a moment in that vast silence looking into each other’s eyes, and then they clasped hands over their tacit compact, and without a word, walked back to the bungalow.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:54 am

Chapter XI: Selwyn Plots with Thor

For five years Gloria and Philip worked in their separate fields, but, nevertheless, coming in frequent touch with one another. Gloria proselyting the rich by showing them their selfishness, and turning them to a larger purpose in life, and Philip leading the forces of those who had consecrated themselves to the uplifting of the unfortunate. It did not take Philip long to discern that in the last analysis it would be necessary for himself and co-workers to reach the results aimed at through politics. Masterful and arrogant wealth, created largely by Government protection of its profits, not content with its domination and influence within a single party, had sought to corrupt them both, and to that end had insinuated itself into the primaries, in order that no candidates might be nominated whose views were not in accord with theirs.

By the use of all the money that could be spent, by a complete and compact organization and by the most infamous sort of deception regarding his real opinions and intentions, plutocracy had succeeded in electing its creature to the Presidency. There had been formed a league, the membership of which was composed of one thousand multi-millionaires, each one contributing ten thousand dollars. This gave a fund of ten million dollars with which to mislead those that could be misled, and to debauch the weak and uncertain.

This nefarious plan was conceived by a senator whose swollen fortune had been augmented year after year through the tributes paid him by the interests he represented. He had a marvelous aptitude for political manipulation and organization, and he forged a subtle chain with which to hold in subjection the natural impulses of the people. His plan was simple, but behind it was the cunning of a mind that had never known defeat. There was no man in either of the great political parties that was big enough to cope with him or to unmask his methods.

Up to the advent of Senator Selwyn, the interests had not successfully concealed their hands. Sometimes the public had been mistaken as to the true character of their officials, but sooner or later the truth had developed, for in most instances, wealth was openly for or against certain men and measures. But the adroit Selwyn moved differently.

His first move was to confer with John Thor, the high priest of finance, and unfold his plan to him, explaining how essential was secrecy. It was agreed between them that it should be known to the two of them only.

Thor’s influence throughout commercial America was absolute. His wealth, his ability and even more the sum of the capital he could control through the banks, trust companies and industrial organizations, which he dominated, made his word as potent as that of a monarch.

He and Selwyn together went over the roll and selected the thousand that were to give each ten thousand dollars. Some they omitted for one reason or another, but when they had finished they had named those who could make or break within a day any man or corporation within their sphere of influence. Thor was to send for each of the thousand and compliment him by telling him that there was a matter, appertaining to the general welfare of the business fraternity, which needed twenty thousand dollars, that he, Thor, would put up ten, and wanted him to put up as much, that sometime in the future, or never, as the circumstances might require, would he make a report as to the expenditure and purpose therefor.

There were but few men of business between the Atlantic and Pacific, or between Canada and Mexico, who did not consider themselves fortunate in being called to New York by Thor, and in being asked to join him in a blind pool looking to the safe-guarding of wealth. Consequently, the amassing of this great corruption fund in secret was simple. If necessity had demanded it twice the sum could have been raised. The money when collected was placed in Thor’s name in different banks controlled by him, and Thor, from time to time, as requested by Selwyn, placed in banks designated by him whatever sums were needed. Selwyn then transferred these amounts to the private bank of his son-in-law, who became final paymaster. The result was that the public had no chance of obtaining any knowledge of the fund or how it was spent.

The plan was simple, the result effective. Selwyn had no one to interfere with him. The members of the pool had contributed blindly to Thor, and Thor preferred not to know what Selwyn was doing nor how he did it. It was a one man power which in the hands of one possessing ability of the first class, is always potent for good or evil.

Not only did Selwyn plan to win the Presidency, but he also planned to bring under his control both the Senate and the Supreme Court. He selected one man in each of thirty of the States, some of them belonging to his party and some to the opposition, whom he intended to have run for the Senate.

If he succeeded in getting twenty of them elected, he counted upon having a good majority of the Senate, because there were already thirty-eight Senators upon whom he could rely in any serious attack upon corporate wealth.

As to the Supreme Court, of the nine justices there were three that were what he termed “safe and sane,” and another that could be counted upon in a serious crisis.

Three of them, upon whom he could not rely, were of advanced age, and it was practically certain that the next President would have that many vacancies to fill. Then there would be an easy working majority.

His plan contemplated nothing further than this. His intention was to block all legislation adverse to the interests. He would have no new laws to fear, and of the old, the Supreme Court would properly interpret them.

He did not intend that his Senators should all vote alike, speak alike, or act from apparently similar motives. Where they came from States dominated by corporate wealth, he would have them frankly vote in the open, and according to their conviction.

When they came from agricultural States, where the sentiment was known as “progressive,” they could cover their intentions in many ways. One method was by urging an amendment so radical that no honest progressive would consent to it, and then refusing to support the more moderate measure because it did not go far enough. Another was to inject some clause that was clearly unconstitutional, and insist upon its adoption, and refusing to vote for the bill without its insertion.

Selwyn had no intention of letting any one Senator know that he controlled any other senator. There were to be no caucuses, no conferences of his making, or anything that looked like an organization. He was the center, and from him radiated everything appertaining to measures affecting “the interests.”
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:55 am

Chapter XII: Selwyn Seeks a Candidate

Selwyn then began carefully scrutinizing such public men in the States known as Presidential cradles, as seemed to him eligible. By a process of elimination he centered upon two that appeared desirable.

One was James R. Rockland, recently elected Governor of a State of the Middle West. The man had many of the earmarks of a demagogue, which Selwyn readily recognized, and he therefore concluded to try him first.

Accordingly he went to the capital of the State ostensibly upon private business, and dropped in upon the Governor in the most casual way. Rockland was distinctly flattered by the attention, for Selwyn was, perhaps, the best known figure in American politics, while he, himself, had only begun to attract attention. They had met at conventions and elsewhere, but they were practically unacquainted, for Rockland had never been permitted to enter the charmed circle which gathered around Selwyn.

“Good morning, Governor,” said Selwyn, when he had been admitted to Rockland’s private room. “I was passing through the capital and I thought I would look in on you and see how your official cares were using you.”

“I am glad to see you, Senator,” said Rockland effusively, “very glad, for there are some party questions coming up at the next session of the Legislature about which I particularly desire your advice.”

“I have but a moment now, Rockland,” answered the Senator, “but if you will dine with me in my rooms at the Mandell House to-night it will be a pleasure to talk over such matters with you.”

“Thank you, Senator, at what hour?”

“You had better come at seven for if I finish my business here to-day, I shall leave on the 10 o’clock for Washington,” said Selwyn.

Thus in the most casual way the meeting was arranged. As a matter of fact, Rockland had no party matters to discuss, and Selwyn knew it. He also knew that Rockland was ambitious to become a leader, and to get within the little group that controlled the party and the Nation.

Rockland was a man of much ability, but he fell far short of measuring up with Selwyn, who was in a class by himself. The Governor was a good orator, at times even brilliant, and while not a forceful man, yet he had magnetism which served him still better in furthering his political fortunes. He was not one that could be grossly corrupted, yet he was willing to play to the galleries in order to serve his ambition, and he was willing to forecast his political acts in order to obtain potential support.

When he reached the Mandell House, he was at once shown to the Senator’s rooms. Selwyn received him cordially enough to be polite, and asked him if he would not look over the afternoon paper for a moment while he finished a note he was writing. He wrote leisurely, then rang for a boy and ordered dinner to be served.

Selwyn merely tasted the wine (he seldom did more) but Rockland drank freely though not to excess. After they had talked over the local matters which were supposed to be the purpose of the conference, much to Rockland’s delight, the Senator began to discuss national politics.

“Rockland,” began Selwyn, “can you hold this state in line at next year’s election?”

“I feel sure that I can, Senator, why do you ask?”

“Since we have been talking here,” he replied, “it has occurred to me that if you could be nominated and elected again, the party might do worse than to consider you for the presidential nomination the year following.

“No, my dear fellow, don’t interrupt me,” continued Selwyn mellifluously.

“It is strange how fate or chance enters into the life of man and even of nations. A business matter calls me here, I pass your office and think to pay my respects to the Governor of the State. Some political questions are perplexing you, and my presence suggests that I may aid in their solution. This dinner follows, your personality appeals to me, and the thought flits through my mind, why should not Rockland, rather than some other man, lead the party two years from now?

“And the result, my dear Rockland, may be, probably will be, your becoming chief magistrate of the greatest republic the sun has ever shone on.”

Rockland by this time was fairly hypnotized by Selwyn’s words, and by their tremendous import. For a moment he dared not trust himself to speak.

“Senator Selwyn,” he said at last, “it would be idle for me to deny that you have excited within me an ambition that a moment ago would have seemed worse than folly. Your influence within the party and your ability to conduct a campaign, gives to your suggestion almost the tender of the presidency. To tell you that I am deeply moved does scant justice to my feelings. If, after further consideration, you think me worthy of the honor, I shall feel under lasting obligations to you which I shall endeavor to repay in every way consistent with honor and with a sacred regard for my oath of office.”

“I want to tell you frankly, Rockland,” answered Selwyn, “that up to now I have had someone else in mind, but I am in no sense committed, and we might as well discuss the matter to as near a conclusion as is possible at this time.”

Selwyn’s voice hardened a little as he went on. “You would not want a nomination that could not carry with a reasonable certainty of election, therefore I would like to go over with you your record, both public and private, in the most open yet confidential way. It is better that you and I, in the privacy of these rooms, should lay bare your past than that it should be done in a bitter campaign and by your enemies. What we say to one another here is to be as if never spoken, and the grave itself must not be more silent. Your private life not only needs to be clean, but there must be no public act at which any one can point an accusing finger.”

“Of course, of course,” said Rockland, with a gesture meant to convey the complete openness of his record.

“Then comes the question of party regularity,” continued Selwyn, without noticing. “Be candid with me, for, if you are not, the recoil will be upon your own head.”

“I am sure that I can satisfy you on every point, Senator. I have never scratched a party ticket nor have I ever voted against any measure endorsed by a party caucus,” said Governor Rockland.

“That is well,” smiled the Senator. “I assume that in making your important appointments you will consult those of us who have stood sponsor for you, not only to the party but to the country. It would be very humiliating to me if I should insist upon your nomination and election and then should for four years have to apologize for what I had done.”

Musingly, as if contemplating the divine presence in the works of man, Selwyn went on, while he closely watched Rockland from behind his half-closed eyelids.

“Our scheme of Government contemplates, I think, a diffuse responsibility, my dear Rockland. While a president has a constitutional right to act alone, he has no moral right to act contrary to the tenets and traditions of his party, or to the advice of the party leaders, for the country accepts the candidate, the party and the party advisers as a whole and not severally.

“It is a natural check, which by custom the country has endorsed as wise, and which must be followed in order to obtain a proper organization. Do you follow me, Governor, and do you endorse this unwritten law?”


If Rockland had heard this at second hand, if he had read it, or if it had related to someone other than himself, he would have detected the sophistry of it. But, exhilarated by wine and intoxicated by ambition, he saw nothing but a pledge to deal squarely by the organization.

“Senator,” he replied fulsomely, “gratitude is one of the tenets of my religion, and therefore inversely ingratitude is unknown to me. You and the organization can count on my loyalty from the beginning to the end, for I shall never fail you.

“I know you will not ask me to do anything at which my conscience will rebel, nor to make an appointment that is not entirely fit.”

“That, Rockland, goes without saying,” answered the Senator with dignity. “I have all the wealth and all the position that I desire. I want nothing now except to do my share towards making my native land grow in prosperity, and to make the individual citizen more contented. To do this we must cease this eternal agitation, this constant proposal of half-baked measures, which the demagogues are offering as a panacea to all the ills that flesh is heir to.

“We need peace, legislative and political peace, so that our people may turn to their industries and work them to success, in the wholesome knowledge that the laws governing commerce and trade conditions will not be disturbed over night.”

“I agree with you there, Senator,” said Rockland eagerly.

“We have more new laws now than we can digest in a decade,” continued Selwyn, “so let us have rest until we do digest them. In Europe the business world works under stable conditions. There we find no proposal to change the money system between moons, there we find no uncertainty from month to month regarding the laws under which manufacturers are to make their products, but with us, it is a wise man who knows when he can afford to enlarge his output.

“A high tariff threatens to-day, a low one to-morrow, and a large part of the time the business world lies in helpless perplexity.

“I take it, Rockland, that you are in favor of stability, that you will join me in my endeavors to give the country a chance to develop itself and its marvelous natural resources.”

As a matter of fact, Rockland’s career had given no evidence of such views. He had practically committed his political fortunes on the side of the progressives, but the world had turned around since then, and he viewed things differently.

“Senator,” he said, his voice tense in his anxiety to prove his reliability, “I find that in the past I have taken only a cursory view of conditions. I see clearly that what you have outlined is a high order of statesmanship. You are constructive: I have been on the side of those who would tear down. I will gladly join hands with you and build up, so that the wealth and power of this country shall come to equal that of any two nations in existence.”

Selwyn settled back in his chair, nodding his approval and telling himself that he would not need to seek further for his candidate.

At Rockland’s earnest solicitation he remained over another day. The Governor gave him copies of his speeches and messages, so that he could assure himself that there was no serious flaw in his public record.

Selwyn cautioned him about changing his attitude too suddenly. “Go on, Rockland, as you have done in the past. It will not do to see the light too quickly. You have the progressives with you now, keep them, and I will let the conservatives know that you think straight and may be trusted.

“We must consult frequently together,” he continued, “but cautiously. There is no need for any one to know that we are working together harmoniously. I may even get some of the conservative papers to attack you judiciously. It will not harm you. But, above all, do nothing of importance without consulting me.


“I am committing the party and the Nation to you, and my responsibility is a heavy one, and I owe it to them that no mistakes are made.”

“You may trust me, Senator,” said Rockland. “I understand perfectly.”
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:55 am

Chapter XIII: Dru and Selwyn Meet

The roads of destiny oftentimes lead us in strange and unlooked for directions and bring together those whose thoughts and purposes are as wide as space itself. When Gloria Strawn first entered boarding school, the roommate given her was Janet Selwyn, the youngest daughter of the Senator. They were alike in nothing, except, perhaps, in their fine perception of truth and honor. But they became devoted friends and had carried their attachment for one another beyond their schoolgirl days. Gloria was a frequent visitor at the Selwyn household both in Washington and Philadelphia, and was a favorite with the Senator. He often bantered her concerning her “socialistic views,” and she in turn would declare that he would some day see the light. Now and then she let fall a hint of Philip, and one day Senator Selwyn suggested that she invite him over to Philadelphia to spend the week end with them. “Gloria, I would like to meet this paragon of the ages,” said he jestingly, “although I am somewhat fearful that he may persuade me to ‘sell all that I have and give it to the poor.’”

“I will promise to protect you during this one visit, Senator,” said Gloria, “but after that I shall leave you to your fate.”

“Dear Philip,” wrote Gloria, “the great Senator Selwyn has expressed a wish to know you, and at his suggestion, I am writing to ask you here to spend with us the coming week end. I have promised that you will not denude him of all his possessions at your first meeting, but beyond that I have refused to go. Seriously, though, I think you should come, for if you would know something of politics, then why not get your lessons from the fountain head?

“Your very sincere,

“Gloria.”

In reply Philip wrote:

“Dear Gloria: You are ever anticipating my wishes. In the crusade we are making I find it essential to know politics, if we are to reach the final goal that we have in mind, and you have prepared the way for the first lesson. I will be over to-morrow on the four o’clock. Please do not bother to meet me.

“Faithfully yours,

“Philip.”

Gloria and Janet Strawn were at the station to meet him. “Janet, this is Mr. Dru,” said Gloria. “It makes me very happy to have my two best friends meet.” As they got in her electric runabout, Janet Strawn said, “Since dinner will not be served for two hours or more, let us drive in the park for a while.” Gloria was pleased to see that Philip was interested in the bright, vivacious chatter of her friend, and she was glad to hear him respond in the same light strain. However, she was confessedly nervous when Senator Selwyn and Philip met. Though in different ways, she admired them both profoundly. Selwyn had a delightful personality, and Gloria felt sure that Philip would come measurably under the influence of it, even though their views were so widely divergent. And in this she was right. Here, she felt, were two great antagonists, and she was eager for the intellectual battle to begin. But she was to be disappointed, for Philip became the listener, and did but little of the talking. He led Senator Selwyn into a dissertation upon the present conditions of the country, and the bearing of the political questions upon them. Selwyn said nothing indiscreet, yet he unfolded to Philip’s view a new and potential world. Later in the evening, the Senator was unsuccessful in his efforts to draw from his young guest his point of view. Philip saw the futility of such a discussion, and contented Selwyn by expressing an earnest appreciation of his patience in making clear so many things about which he had been ignorant. Next morning, Senator Selwyn was strolling with Gloria in the rose garden, when he said, “Gloria, I like your friend Dru. I do not recall ever having met any one like him.”

“Then you got him to talk after we left last night. I am so glad. I was afraid he had on one of his quiet spells.”

“No, he said but little, but the questions he asked gave me glimpses of his mind that sometimes startled me. He was polite, modest but elusive, nevertheless, I like him, and shall see more of him.” Far sighted as Selwyn was, he did not know the full extent of this prophecy.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:55 am

Chapter XIV: The Making of a President

Selwyn now devoted himself to the making of enough conservative senators to control comfortably that body. The task was not difficult to a man of his sagacity with all the money he could spend.

Newspapers were subsidized in ways they scarcely recognized themselves. Honest officials who were in the way were removed by offering them places vastly more remunerative, and in this manner he built up a strong, intelligent and well constructed machine. It was done so sanely and so quietly that no one suspected the master mind behind it all. Selwyn was responsible to no one, took no one into his confidence, and was therefore in no danger of betrayal.

It was a fascinating game to Selwyn. It appealed to his intellectual side far more than it did to his avarice. He wanted to govern the Nation with an absolute hand, and yet not be known as the directing power. He arranged to have his name appear less frequently in the press and he never submitted to interviews, laughingly ridding himself of reporters by asserting that he knew nothing of importance. He had a supreme contempt for the blatant self-advertised politician, and he removed himself as far as possible from that type.

In the meantime his senators were being elected, the Rockland sentiment was steadily growing and his nomination was finally brought about by the progressives fighting vigorously for him and the conservatives yielding a reluctant consent.
It was done so adroitly that Rockland would have been fooled himself, had not Selwyn informed him in advance of each move as it was made.

After the nomination, Selwyn had trusted men put in charge of the campaign, which he organized himself, though largely under cover. The opposition party had every reason to believe that they would be successful, and it was a great intellectual treat to Selwyn to overcome their natural advantages by the sheer force of ability, plus what money he needed to carry out his plans. He put out the cry of lack of funds, and indeed it seemed to be true, for he was too wise to make a display of his resources. To ward heelers, to the daily press, and to professional stump speakers, he gave scant comfort. It was not to such sources that he looked for success.

He began by eliminating all states he knew the opposition party would certainly carry, but he told the party leaders there to claim that a revolution was brewing, and that a landslide would follow at the election. This would keep his antagonists busy and make them less effective elsewhere.

He also ignored the states where his side was sure to win. In this way he was free to give his entire thoughts to the twelve states that were debatable, and upon whose votes the election would turn. He divided each of these states into units containing five thousand voters, and, at the national headquarters, he placed one man in charge of each unit. Of the five thousand, he roughly calculated there would be two thousand voters that no kind of persuasion could turn from his party and two thousand that could not be changed from the opposition. This would leave one thousand doubtful ones to win over. So he had a careful poll made in each unit, and eliminated the strictly unpersuadable party men, and got down to a complete analysis of the debatable one thousand. Information was obtained as to their race, religion, occupation and former political predilection. It was easy then to know how to reach each individual by literature, by persuasion or perhaps by some more subtle argument. No mistake was made by sending the wrong letter or the wrong man to any of the desired one thousand.

In the states so divided, there was, at the local headquarters, one man for each unit just as at the national headquarters. So these two had only each other to consider, and their duty was to bring to Rockland a majority of the one thousand votes within their charge. The local men gave the conditions, the national men gave the proper literature and advice, and the local man then applied it. The money that it cost to maintain such an organization was more than saved from the waste that would have occurred under the old method.

The opposition management was sending out tons of printed matter, but they sent it to state headquarters that, in turn, distributed it to the county organizations, where it was dumped into a corner and given to visitors when asked for. Selwyn’s committee used one-fourth as much printed matter, but it went in a sealed envelope, along with a cordial letter, direct to a voter that had as yet not decided how he would vote.

The opposition was sending speakers at great expense from one end of the country to the other, and the sound of their voices rarely fell on any but friendly and sympathetic ears. Selwyn sent men into his units to personally persuade each of the one thousand hesitating voters to support the Rockland ticket.

The opposition was spending large sums upon the daily press. Selwyn used the weekly press so that he could reach the fireside of every farmer and the dweller in the small country towns. These were the ones that would read every line in their local papers and ponder over it.

The opposition had its candidates going by special train to every part of the Union, making many speeches every day, and mostly to voters that could not be driven from him either by force or persuasion. The leaders in cities, both large and small, would secure a date and, having in mind for themselves a postmastership or collectorship, would tell their followers to turn out in great force and give the candidate a big ovation. They wanted the candidate to remember the enthusiasm of these places, and to leave greatly pleased and under the belief that he was making untold converts. As a matter of fact his voice would seldom reach any but a staunch partisan.

Selwyn kept Rockland at home, and arranged to have him meet by special appointment the important citizens of the twelve uncertain states. He would have the most prominent party leader, in a particular state, go to a rich brewer or large manufacturer, whose views had not yet been crystallized, and say, “Governor Rockland has expressed a desire to know you, and I would like to arrange a meeting.” The man approached would be flattered to think he was of such importance that a candidate for the presidency had expressed a desire to meet him. He would know it was his influence that was wanted but, even so, there was a subtle flattery in that. An appointment would be arranged. Just before he came into Rockland’s presence, his name and a short epitome of his career would be handed to Rockland to read. When he reached Rockland’s home he would at first be denied admittance. His sponsor would say,--“this is Mr. Munting of Muntingville.”

“Oh, pardon me, Mr. Munting, Governor Rockland expects you.”

And in this way he is ushered into the presence of the great. His fame, up to a moment ago, was unknown to Rockland, but he now grasps his hand cordially and says,--“I am delighted to know you, Mr. Munting. I recall the address you made a few years ago when you gave a library to Muntingville. It is men of your type that have made America what it is to-day, and, whether you support me or not, if I am elected President it is such as you that I hope will help sustain my hands in my effort to give to our people a clean, sane and conservative government.”

When Munting leaves he is stepping on air. He sees visions of visits to Washington to consult the President upon matters of state, and perhaps he sees an ambassadorship in the misty future. He becomes Rockland’s ardent supporter, and his purse is open and his influence is used to the fullest extent.

And this was Selwyn’s way. It was all so simple. The opposition was groaning under the thought of having one hundred millions of people to reach, and of having to persuade a majority of twenty millions of voters to take their view.

Selwyn had only one thousand doubtful voters in each of a few units on his mind, and he knew the very day when a majority of them had decided to vote for Rockland, and that his fight was won. The pay-roll of the opposition was filled with incompetent political hacks, that had been fastened upon the management by men of influence. Selwyn’s force, from end to end, was composed of able men who did a full day’s work under the eye of their watchful taskmaster.

And Selwyn won and Rockland became the keystone of the arch he had set out to build.

There followed in orderly succession the inauguration, the selection of cabinet officers and the new administration was launched.

Drunk with power and the adulation of sycophants, once or twice Rockland asserted himself, and acted upon important matters without having first conferred with Selwyn. But, after he had been bitterly assailed by Selwyn’s papers and by his senators, he made no further attempts at independence. He felt that he was utterly helpless in that strong man’s hands, and so, indeed, he was.

One of the Supreme Court justices died, two retired because of age, and all were replaced by men suggested by Selwyn.

He now had the Senate, the Executive and a majority of the Court of last resort. The government was in his hands. He had reached the summit of his ambition, and the joy of it made all his work seem worth while.

But Selwyn, great man that he was, did not know, could not know, that when his power was greatest it was most insecure. He did not know, could not know, what force was working to his ruin and to the ruin of his system.

Take heart, therefore, you who had lost faith in the ultimate destiny of the Republic, for a greater than Selwyn is here to espouse your cause. He comes panoplied in justice and with the light of reason in his eyes. He comes as the advocate of equal opportunity and he comes with the power to enforce his will.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:55 am

Chapter XV: The Exultant Conspirators

It was a strange happening, the way the disclosure was made and the Nation came to know of the Selwyn-Thor conspiracy to control the government.

Thor, being without any delicate sense of honor, was in the habit of using a dictagraph to record what was intended to be confidential conversations. He would take these confidential records, clearly mark them, and place them in his private safe within the vault. When the transaction to which they related was closed he destroyed them.

The character of the instrument was carefully concealed. It was a part of a massive piece of office furniture, which answered for a table as well. In order to facilitate his correspondence, he often used it for dictating, and no one but Thor knew that it was ever put into commission for other purposes.

He had never, but once, had occasion to use a record that related to a private conversation or agreement. Then it concerned a matter involving a large sum, a demand having been made upon him that smacked of blackmail. He arranged a meeting, which his opponent regarded as an indication that he was willing to yield. There were present the contestant, his lawyer, Thor’s counsel and Thor himself.

“Before discussing the business that is before us,” said Thor, “I think you would all enjoy, more or less, a record which I have in my dictagraph, and which I have just listened to with a great deal of pleasure.”

He handed a tube to each and started the machine. It is a pity that Hogarth could not have been present to have painted the several expressions that came upon the faces of those four. A quiet but amused satisfaction beamed from Thor, and his counsel could not conceal a broad smile, but the wretched victim was fairly sick from mortification and defeated avarice. He finally could stand no more and took the tube from his ear, reached for his hat and was gone.

Thor had not seen Selwyn for a long time, but one morning, when he was expecting another for whom he had his dictagraph set, Selwyn was announced. He asked him in and gave orders that they were not to be disturbed. When Selwyn had assured himself that they were absolutely alone he told Thor his whole story.

It was of absorbing interest, and Thor listened fairly hypnotized by the recital, which at times approached the dramatic. It was the first time that Selwyn had been able to unbosom himself, and he enjoyed the impression he was making upon the great financier. When he told how Rockland had made an effort for freedom and how he brought him back, squirming under his defeat, they laughed joyously.

Rich though he was beyond the dreams of avarice, rich as no man had ever before been, Thor could not refrain from a mental calculation of how enormously such a situation advanced his fortune. There was to be no restriction now, he could annihilate and absorb at will. He had grown so powerful that his mental equilibrium was unbalanced upon the question of accretion. He wanted more, he must have more, and now, by the aid of Selwyn, he would have more. He was so exultant that he gave some expression to his thoughts, and Selwyn, cynical as he was, was shocked and began to fear the consequences of his handiwork.

He insisted upon Selwyn’s lunching with him in order to celebrate the triumph of “their” plan. Selwyn was amused at the plural. They went to a near-by club and remained for several hours talking of things of general interest, for Selwyn refused to discuss his victory after they had left the protecting walls of Thor’s office.

Thor had forgotten his other engagement, and along with it he forgot the dictagraph that he had set. When he returned to his office he could not recall whether or not he had set the dictagraph. He looked at it, saw that it was not set, but that there was an unused record in it and dismissed it from his mind. He wanted no more business for the day. He desired to get out and walk and think and enjoy the situation. And so he went, a certain unholy joy within his warped and money-soddened heart.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:56 am

Chapter XVI: The Exposure

Long after Thor had gone, long after the day had dwindled into twilight and the twilight had shaded into dusk, Thomas Spears, his secretary, sat and pondered. After Thor and Selwyn had left the office for luncheon he had gone to the dictagraph to see whether there was anything for him to take. He found the record, saw it had been used, removed it to his machine and got ready to transmit. He was surprised to find that it was Selwyn’s voice that came to him, then Thor’s, and again Selwyn’s. He knew then that it was not intended for dictation, that there was some mistake and yet he held it until he had gotten the whole of the mighty conspiracy. Pale and greatly agitated he remained motionless for a long time. Then he returned to Thor’s office, placed a new record in the machine and closed it.

Spears came from sturdy New England stock and was at heart a patriot. He had come to New York largely by accident of circumstances.

Spears had a friend named Harry Tracy, with whom he had grown up in the little Connecticut village they called home, and who was distantly related to Thor, whose forebears also came from that vicinity. They had gone to the same commercial school, and were trained particularly in stenography and typing. Tracy sought and obtained a place in Thor’s office. He was attentive to his duties, very accurate, and because of his kinship and trustworthiness, Thor made him his confidential secretary. The work became so heavy that Tracy got permission to employ an assistant. He had Spears in mind for the place, and, after conferring with Thor, offered it to him.

Thor consented largely because he preferred some one who had not lived in New York, and was in no way entangled with the life and sentiment of the city. Being from New England himself, he trusted the people of that section as he did no others.

So Thomas Spears was offered the place and gladly accepted it. He had not been there long before he found himself doing all the stenographic work and typing.

Spears was a man of few words. He did his work promptly and well. Thor had him closely shadowed for a long while, and the report came that he had no bad habits and but few companions and those of the best. But Thor could get no confidential report upon the workings of his mind. He did not know that his conscience sickened at what he learned through the correspondence and from his fellow clerks. He did not know that his every heart beat was for the unfortunates that came within the reach of Thor’s avarice, and were left the merest derelicts upon the financial seas.

All the clerks were gone, the lights were out and Spears sat by the window looking out over the great modern Babylon, still fighting with his conscience. His sense of loyalty to the man who gave him his livelihood rebelled at the thought of treachery. It was not unlike accepting food and shelter and murdering your benefactor, for Spears well knew that in the present state of the public mind if once the truth were known, it would mean death to such as Thor. For with a fatuous ignorance of public feeling the interests had gone blindly on, conceding nothing, stifling competition and absorbing the wealth and energies of the people.

Spears knew that the whole social and industrial fabric of the nation was at high tension, and that it needed but a spark to explode. He held within his hand that spark. Should he plunge the country, his country, into a bloody internecine war, or should he let the Selwyns and the Thors trample the hopes, the fortunes and the lives of the people under foot for still another season. If he held his peace it did but postpone the conflict.

The thought flashed through his mind of the bigness of the sum any one of the several great dailies would give to have the story. And then there followed a sense of shame that he could think of such a thing.

He felt that he was God’s instrument for good and that he should act accordingly. He was aroused now, he would no longer parley with his conscience. What was best to do? That was the only question left to debate.

He looked at an illuminated clock upon a large white shaft that lifted its marble shoulders towards the stars. It was nine o’clock. He turned on the lights, ran over the telephone book until he reached the name of what he considered the most important daily. He said: “Mr. John Thor’s office desires to speak with the Managing Editor.” This at once gave him the connection he desired.

“This is Mr. John Thor’s secretary, and I would like to see you immediately upon a matter of enormous public importance. May I come to your office at once?”

There was something in the voice that startled the newspaper man, and he wondered what Thor’s office could possibly want with him concerning any matter, public or private. However, he readily consented to an interview and waited with some impatience for the quarter of an hour to go by that was necessary to cover the distance. He gave orders to have Spears brought in as soon as he arrived.

When Spears came he told the story with hesitation and embarrassment. The Managing Editor thought at first that he was in the presence of a lunatic, but after a few questions he began to believe. He had a dictagraph in his office and asked for the record. He was visibly agitated when the full import of the news became known to him. Spears insisted that the story be given to all the city papers and to the Associated Press, which the Managing Editor promised to do.

When the story was read the next morning by America’s millions, it was clear to every far-sighted person that a crisis had come and that revolution was imminent. Men at once divided themselves into groups. Now, as it has ever been, the very poor largely went with the rich and powerful. The reason for this may be partly from fear and partly from habit. They had seen the struggle going on for centuries and with but one result.

A mass meeting was called to take place the day following at New York’s largest public hall. The call was not inflammatory, but asked “all good citizens to lend their counsel and influence to the rectification of those abuses that had crept into the Government,” and it was signed by many of the best known men in the Nation.

The hall was packed to its limits an hour before the time named. A distinguished college president from a nearby town was given the chair, and in a few words he voiced the indignation and the humiliation which they all felt. Then one speaker after another bitterly denounced the administration, and advocated the overthrow of the Government. One, more intemperate than the rest, urged an immediate attack on Thor and all his kind. This was met by a roar of approval.

Philip had come early and was seated well in front. In the pandemonium that now prevailed no speaker could be heard. Finally Philip fought his way to the stage, gave his name to the chairman, and asked to be heard.

When the white-haired college president arose there was a measure of quiet, and when he mentioned Philip’s name and they saw his splendid, homely face there was a curious hush. He waited for nearly a minute after perfect quiet prevailed, and then, in a voice like a deep-toned bell, he spoke with such fervor and eloquence that one who was present said afterwards that he knew the hour and the man had come. Philip explained that hasty and ill-considered action had ruined other causes as just as theirs, and advised moderation. He suggested that a committee be named by the chairman to draw up a plan of procedure, to be presented at another meeting to be held the following night. This was agreed to, and the chairman received tremendous applause when he named Philip first.

This meeting had been called so quickly, and the names attached to the call were so favorably known, that the country at large seemed ready to wait upon its conclusions.

It was apparent from the size and earnestness of the second gathering that the interest was growing rather than abating.

Philip read the plan which his committee had formulated, and then explained more at length their reasons for offering it. Briefly, it advised no resort to violence, but urged immediate organization and cooperation with citizens throughout the United States who were in sympathy with the movement. He told them that the conscience of the people was now aroused, and that there would be no halting until the Government was again within their hands to be administered for the good of the many instead of for the good of a rapacious few.

The resolutions were sustained, and once more Philip was placed at the head of a committee to perfect not only a state, but a national organization as well. Calls for funds to cover preliminary expenses brought immediate and generous response, and the contest was on.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:56 am

Chapter XVII: Selwyn and Thor Defend Themselves

In the meantime Selwyn and Thor had issued an address, defending their course as warranted by both the facts and the law.

They said that the Government had been honeycombed by irresponsible demagogues, that were fattening upon the credulity of the people to the great injury of our commerce and prosperity, that no laws unfriendly to the best interests had been planned, and no act had been contemplated inconsistent with the dignity and honor of the Nation. They contended that in protecting capital against vicious assaults, they were serving the cause of labor and advancing the welfare of all.


Thor’s whereabouts was a mystery, but Selwyn, brave and defiant, pursued his usual way.

President Rockland also made a statement defending his appointments of Justices of the Supreme Court, and challenged anyone to prove them unfit. He said that, from the foundation of the Government, it had become customary for a President to make such appointments from amongst those whose views were in harmony with his own, that in this case he had selected men of well known integrity, and of profound legal ability, and, because they were such, they were brave enough to stand for the right without regard to the clamor of ill-advised and ignorant people. He stated that he would continue to do his duty, and that he would uphold the constitutional rights of all the people without distinction to race, color or previous condition.

Acting under Selwyn’s advice, Rockland began to concentrate quietly troops in the large centers of population. He also ordered the fleets into home waters. A careful inquiry was made regarding the views of the several Governors within easy reach of Washington, and, finding most of them favorable to the Government, he told them that in case of disorder he would honor their requisition for federal troops. He advised a thorough overlooking of the militia, and the weeding out of those likely to sympathize with the “mob.” If trouble came, he promised to act promptly and forcefully, and not to let mawkish sentiment encourage further violence.

He recalled to them that the French Revolution was caused, and continued, by the weakness and inertia of Louis Fifteenth and his ministers and that the moment the Directorate placed Bonaparte in command of a handful of troops, and gave him power to act, by the use of grape and ball he brought order in a day. It only needed a quick and decisive use of force, he thought, and untold suffering and bloodshed would be averted.

President Rockland believed what he said. He seemed not to know that Bonaparte dealt with a ragged, ignorant mob, and had back of him a nation that had been in a drunken and bloody orgy for a period of years and wanted to sober up. He seemed not to know that in this contest, the clear-brained, sturdy American patriot was enlisted against him and what he represented, and had determined to come once more into his own.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:56 am

Chapter XVIII: Gloria’s Work Bears Fruit

In her efforts towards proselyting the rich, Gloria had not neglected her immediate family. By arguments and by bringing to the fore concrete examples to illustrate them, she had succeeded in awakening within her father a curious and unhappy frame of mind. That shifting and illusive thing we call conscience was beginning to assert itself in divers ways.

The first glimpse that Gloria had of his change of heart was at a dinner party. The discussion began by a dyspeptic old banker declaring that before the business world could bring the laboring classes to their senses it would be necessary to shut down the factories for a time and discontinue new enterprises in order that their dinner buckets and stomachs might become empty.

Before Gloria could take up the cudgels in behalf of those seeking a larger share of the profits of their labor, Mr. Strawn had done so. The debate between the two did not last long and was not unduly heated, but Gloria knew that the Rubicon had been crossed and that in the future she would have a powerful ally in her father.

Neither had she been without success in other directions, and she was, therefore, able to report to Philip very satisfactory progress. In one of their many conferences she was glad to be able to tell him that in the future abundant financial backing was assured for any cause recommended by either of them as being worthy. This was a long step forward, and Philip congratulated Gloria upon her efficient work.

“Do you remember, Gloria,” he said, “how unhappy you were over the thought of laboring among the rich instead of the poor? And yet, contemplate the result. You have not only given some part of your social world an insight into real happiness, but you are enabling the balance of us to move forward at a pace that would have been impossible without your aid.” Gloria flushed with pleasure at his generous praise and replied: “It is good of you, Philip, to give me so large a credit, and I will not deny that I am very happy over the outcome of my endeavors, unimportant though they be. I am so glad, Philip, that you have been given the leadership of our side in the coming struggle, for I shall now feel confident of success.”

“Do not be too sure, Gloria. We have the right and a majority of the American people with us; yet, on the other hand, we have opposed to us not only resourceful men but the machinery of a great Government buttressed by unlimited wealth and credit.”


“Why could not I ‘try out’ the sincerity of my rich converts and get them to help finance your campaign?”

“Happy thought! If you succeed in doing that, Gloria, you will become the Joan d’Arc of our cause, and unborn generations will hold you in grateful remembrance.”

“How you do enthuse one, Philip. I feel already as if my name were written high upon the walls of my country’s Valhalla. Tell me how great a fund you will require, and I will proceed at once to build the golden ladder upon which I am to climb to fame.”

“You need not make light of your suggestion in this matter, Gloria, for the lack of funds with which to organize is essentially our weakest point. With money we can overthrow the opposition, without it I am afraid they may defeat us. As to the amount needed, I can set no limit. The more you get the more perfectly can we organize. Do what you can and do it quickly, and be assured that if the sum is considerable and if our cause triumphs, you will have been the most potent factor of us all.”

And then they parted; Gloria full of enthusiasm over her self-appointed task, and Philip with a silent prayer for her success.
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Re: Philip Dru: Administrator, by Edward Mandell House

Postby admin » Sun Aug 02, 2015 2:57 am

Chapter XIX: War Clouds Hover

Gloria was splendidly successful in her undertaking and within two weeks she was ready to place at Philip’s disposal an amount far in excess of anything he had anticipated.

“It was so easy that I have a feeling akin to disappointment that I did not have to work harder,” she wrote in her note to Philip announcing the result. “When I explained the purpose and the importance of the outcome, almost everyone approached seemed eager to have a share in the undertaking.”

In his reply of thanks, Philip said, “The sum you have realized is far beyond any figure I had in mind. With what we have collected throughout the country, it is entirely sufficient, I think, to effect a preliminary organization, both political and military. If the final result is to be civil war, then the states that cast their fortunes with ours, will, of necessity, undertake the further financing of the struggle.”

Philip worked assiduously upon his organization. It was first intended to make it political and educational, but when the defiant tone of Selwyn, Thor and Rockland was struck, and their evident intention of using force became apparent, he almost wholly changed it into a military organization. His central bureau was now in touch with every state, and he found in the West a grim determination to bring matters to a conclusion as speedily as possible.

On the other hand, he was sparring for time. He knew his various groups were in no condition to be pitted against any considerable number of trained regulars. He hoped, too, that actual conflict would be avoided, and that a solution could be arrived at when the forthcoming election for representatives occurred.

It was evident that a large majority of the people were with them: the problem was to get a fair and legal expression of opinion. As yet, there was no indication that this would not be granted.

The preparations on both sides became so open, that there was no longer any effort to work under cover. Philip cautioned his adherents against committing any overt act. He was sure that the administration forces would seize the slightest pretext to precipitate action, and that, at this time, would give them an enormous advantage.

He himself trained the men in his immediate locality, and he also had the organization throughout the country trained, but without guns. The use of guns would not have been permitted except to regular authorized militia. The drilling was done with wooden guns, each man hewing out a stick to the size and shape of a modern rifle. At his home, carefully concealed, each man had his rifle.

And then came the election. Troops were at the polls and a free ballot was denied. It was the last straw. Citizens gathering after nightfall in order to protest were told to disperse immediately, and upon refusal, were fired upon. The next morning showed a death roll in the large centers of population that was appalling.

Wisconsin was the state in which there was the largest percentage of the citizenship unfavorable to the administration and to the interests. Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska were closely following.

Philip concluded to make his stand in the West, and he therefore ordered the men in every organization east of the Mississippi to foregather at once at Madison, and to report to him there. He was in constant touch with those Governors who were in sympathy with the progressive or insurgent cause, and he wired the Governor of Wisconsin, in cipher, informing him of his intentions.

As yet travel had not been seriously interrupted, though business was largely at a standstill, and there was an ominous quiet over the land. The opposition misinterpreted this, and thought that the people had been frightened by the unexpected show of force. Philip knew differently, and he also knew that civil war had begun. He communicated his plans to no one, but he had the campaign well laid out. It was his intention to concentrate in Wisconsin as large a force as could be gotten from his followers east and south of that state, and to concentrate again near Des Moines every man west of Illinois whom he could enlist. It was his purpose then to advance simultaneously both bodies of troops upon Chicago.

In the south there had developed a singular inertia. Neither side counted upon material help or opposition there.

The great conflict covering the years from 1860 to 1865 was still more than a memory, though but few living had taken part in it. The victors in that mighty struggle thought they had been magnanimous to the defeated but the well-informed Southerner knew that they had been made to pay the most stupendous penalty ever exacted in modern times. At one stroke of the pen, two thousand millions of their property was taken from them. A pension system was then inaugurated that taxed the resources of the Nation to pay. By the year 1927 more than five thousand millions had gone to those who were of the winning side. Of this the South was taxed her part, receiving nothing in return.

Cynical Europe said that the North would have it appear that a war had been fought for human freedom, whereas it seemed that it was fought for money. It forgot the many brave and patriotic men who enlisted because they held the Union to be one and indissoluble, and were willing to sacrifice their lives to make it so, and around whom a willing and grateful government threw its protecting arms. And it confused those deserving citizens with the unworthy many, whom pension agents and office seekers had debauched at the expense of the Nation. Then, too, the South remembered that one of the immediate results of emancipation was that millions of ignorant and indigent people were thrown upon the charity and protection of the Southern people, to care for and to educate. In some states sixty per cent, of the population were negroes, and they were as helpless as children and proved a heavy burden upon the forty per cent of whites.

In rural populations more schoolhouses had to be maintained, and more teachers employed for the number taught, and the percentage of children per capita was larger than in cities. Then, of necessity, separate schools had to be maintained. So, altogether, the load was a heavy one for an impoverished people to carry.

The humane, the wise, the patriotic thing to have done, was for the Nation to have assumed the responsibility of the education of the negroes for at least one generation.

What a contrast we see in England’s treatment of the Boers. After a long and bloody war, which drew heavily upon the lives and treasures of the Nation, England’s first act was to make an enormous grant to the conquered Boers, that they might have every facility to regain their shattered fortunes, and bring order and prosperity to their distracted land.


We see the contrast again in that for nearly a half century after the Civil War was over, no Southerner was considered eligible for the Presidency.

On the other hand, within a few years after the African Revolution ended, a Boer General, who had fought throughout the war with vigor and distinction, was proposed and elected Premier of the United Colonies.

Consequently, while sympathizing with the effort to overthrow Selwyn’s government, the South moved slowly and with circumspection.
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