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The Outlook

MAY 3, 1916

Offices, 381 Fourth Avenue, New York


The most picturesque and unexpected recent military news has been that of the landing of two contingents of Russian troops at Marseilles; the first on April 20, the second on April 25. There is even a rumor that a detachment of Russian troops arrived at Marseilles previous to the first date named. If so, the landing was kept a profound secret. When the first contingent of these Russians landed from their flotilla of transports, they were received by great crowds of the French people, who welcomed them with ringing cheers and shouts of "Vive la Russie !" while the French vessels in the harbor manned their yard-arms and French bands played the Russian anthem. The news, cabled at once all over the world, was received with surprise, and, on the part of all friends of the Allies, with enthusiasm.

The question at once arose as to the route by which these troops were brought from Russia. Naturally no statement was made on this subject; but the fact that they were landed in the Mediterranean and other reasons have lent probability to the belief that they came from Vladivostok and Dalny by way of the Suez Canal and were taken from the great concentration camps in Manchuria. Press despatches estimate that perhaps thirty thousand of these Russian troops have now been landed at Marseilles; and other reports, not at all well confirmed, assert that it is the intention of the Allies to put 250,000 Russian troops on the western front. One underlying reason for this movement is the fact that it is much easier to equip the troops in France than in Russia, and that there are more troops in the Russian military concentration camps than can be equipped for work on the battle line between Russia and Germany.


Last week was made public the joint reply of Great Britain and France to the American

protest of nearly six months ago in regard to restrictions on neutral trade by the British sea blockade. The reply declares that the kind of blockade now being maintained is perfectly legitimate as a belligerent right; that it is being conducted in the spirit of international law; and that the aim is to give as little inconvenience or injury to neutral trade as is consistent with effectiveness.

That a certain amount of interference with such trade is necessary is argued in the assertions that the old method of search at sea is in present warfare impracticable, so that vessels must either be allowed to go without search or taken to port; that the statistics of commerce show that, so far from neutral trade having been diminished, it has enormously increased-thus the exports of the United States to Holland and the three Scandinavian colonies rose from about ninetyseven million dollars in 1913 to two hundred and thirty-five million dollars in 1915. That this increase is due to genuine commerce with the neutral countries is scouted, and in support of this it is pointed out that such things have been proved as the consignment of meat products to dock laborers; the con-` signment of thousands of tons of goods to firms which do not exist in the neutral ports to which the goods are sent; the consignment of goods to a maker of musical instruments, a baker, and the keeper of a small private hotel; while it is also asserted that in Sweden at one time when the docks of Swedish ports were piled high with cargoes of American cotton the Swedish manufacturing spinners could obtain no cotton for their own use, the inference obviously being that the cotton was intended to go through Sweden to Germany. The note again calls attention to certain practices and decisions of the United States in our Civil War. It concludes with a reference to the shocking disregard by the enemy of rights of innocent persons and neutral peoples," and declares that Great Britain would welcome any action by the combined neutral nations which would pre

vent the violation of neutral rights as á whole.

It seems superfluous to point out again that the questions at issue in this controversy are as far removed froin the questions involved in the difference with Germany over the submarine warfare as in private affairs a trespass on one's land is removed from the shooting of one's children.


The word "revolution," and perhaps even the word "revolt," is far too high-sounding to be applied to what has happened in Ireland. Just how much connection exists between the attempt made by a ship under German commission, but disguised as a merchantman, to land arms on the Irish coast and the rioting in Dublin it is hard to say. It seems probable, however, that there was a real connection between the two things, and that both represent a futile outcome of the pernicious activities of a small but irrepressible band of Irishmen who hate England because of traditional grievances rather than of present injuries, and who hold that every means of revolt, however traitorous or violent, is justified. These men, now represented most prominently by the association called the "Sinn Fein," are really the political heirs of the old Fenian movement. They dream of an absolutely independent republic of Ireland; and now, as always, that dream is without basis of real hope. One might almost wish for these misguided and unreasonable men the taste of German colonial government which an absolute German victory might bring to Ireland,

With the capture of the vessel containing the arms was captured that strange personage, Sir Roger Casement. There is considerable ground for the announced belief of Sir A. Conan Doyle and others that this man is touched with insanity. Although he is from the north of Ireland and, we believe, a Protestant, he has been an active figure in the conspiracies of the most extreme and irreconcilable Irish revolutionists. In his early career he did excellent service with the British Government, especially in connection with the exposure of the cruelties in the Congo and the Putumayo affair in Peru. As a reward he was knighted and pensioned. But when the war broke out, instead of following the example of the Irish Nationalists under John Redmond and the Ulster anti

Nationalists under Sir Edward Carson in uniting for patriotic effort for the good of the whole country, Sir Roger escaped to Germany, and has been plotting there ever since to bring about an invasion of Ireland from Germany.

The street fighting in Dublin was probably timed, but wrongly timed, to aid the "invasion." At all events, the rioters seized the post-office in Dublin and some buildings near by, together with the adjacent park, cut the telephone and telegraph wires from the post-office, and resisted attack with some vigor. The report made in Parliament by the Chief Secretary for Ireland, Mr. Augustine Birrell, on April 25, states that the troops were brought from beyond Dublin, that many of the rioters have been arrested, and that the situation was at the time well in hand. Later Mr. Asquith announced that outside Dublin Ireland was tranquil and that in Dublin the situation was satisfactory. Eleven or twelve soldiers and policemen were killed and perhaps twice that number wounded. The number of killed and injured among the rioters is not known at this writing. An attack by German cruisers on the English coast town of Lowestoft may possibly have been timed to increase the impression of invasion; it did little harm, and on the appearance of British war-ships the German ships hastily retreated.

The Outlook has always favored Home Rule and still favors it, but independence for Ireland would be ruinous to the Irish, and we do not believe that it is desired by more than a fraction of them. If this is a revolt by Irish fanatics and self-seekers, uniting them with the cause of German absolutism when the sympathies of all lovers of liberty are united against German absolutism, it demonstrates the incapacity of the leaders of the revolt to organize or maintain a truly free government. The best that can be said of them is that their nationalism is a purely selfish nationalism. They have no notion of the meaning of either nationalism, brotherhood, or self-government.


Preparedness has found its way into State legislation-notably in New York. The Legislature of New York State has adjourned, leaving for the Governor's approval or disapproval five military bills. Three of these have to do with the State militia. If we are as a Nation to continue to depend for

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National defense upon the organized militia of the States, these three bills will, perhaps, make it somewhat more effective. Such bills as these, however, ought to be made entirely unnecessary by the development of a real National Guard under Federal control and based on universal military service.

The other two bills relate to the physical and military training of boys and girls. One of these bills, known as the Welsh Bill, is good in that it provides for an experiment worth trying; the other, known as the Slater Bill, is bad and ought to be vetoed.

The Welsh Bill provides that after the first of next September all boys and girls over eight years of age in public and private elementary and secondary schools of the State shall receive physical training. This shall include not only training in physical posture and bearing, mental and physical alertness, and so on, but also training that will develop "self-control, disciplined initiative, sense of duty, and spirit of co-operation under leadership." The courses of instruction shall be determined by the Regents in conference with the Military Training Commission.

The other bill, introduced by Mr. Slater, provides for military drill for boys. It applies not only to boys in school, but also to other boys of school age unless they are lawfully employed in an occupation for a livelihood. This bill is bad, not because it provides for such military drill, but because its provisions are so faulty and the money it provides so absurdly inadequate that it exposes the boys of the State to very real physical and moral danger. The bill bears on its face no evidence of being the product of a wellthought-out plan of military experts who are acquainted with the whole problem of military training and service, but appears rather to be a well-intentioned attempt to provide military instruction somehow.

The most dangerous feature of the bill is that which relates to the field training. This provides that the State Military Training Commission (which is created by the bill itself) shall establish and maintain State military camps for the field training of boys. The location of the camps is left to the determination of the Commission; but the bill provides that fair grounds held by an organization receiving moneys from the State shall be subject to use for this purpose of military training. Of course fair grounds are not selected because they are good camp sites. and may be totally unfit from a sanitary point


of view as well as other points of view for the encampment of boys. Yet, as this bill provides only a hundred thousand dollars for all expenses, it is hardly conceivable that any other sites will be obtainable. The whole scheme is amateurish to a degree. All who believe in real military training and all who have the interest of the boys of New York State at heart should urge the Governor to veto this measure.

These five military bills serve to make it more than ever evident that the several States should be relieved of the problem of National defense, and that the whole question of military training and service should be left solely to the Federal Government under the direction of a Council of National Defense.



The Plattsburg idea" is growing. It originated, we believe, with Major-General Leonard Wood. Its primary purpose is to train men in civil life by giving them instruction in summer camps so that we should have in this country a reserve body of civilians competent to furnish officers for volunteer regiments in time of military need. It is a volunteer and civilian movement, although it has the approval and supervision of the War Department of the Federal Government. It is a successful attempt to put into practice by voluntary action the principles of military and civic training which the Swiss people have adopted as a part of their fundamental political structure. These military training camps, which are popularly known as "Plattsburg Camps," because of the great success last summer of the camp at Plattsburg, New York, are peculiarly American because they are at once voluntary, civil, and military. Although promoted by associations of citizens, they are directed and managed by the Federal Government, through the War Department. The function of the citizens' associations is to distribute information, arouse public interest, and obtain the volunteers; the function of the War Department is to have control of the moral, intellectual, military, and disciplinary education in the camp.

We have already reported how the attendance at these camps has grown from eighteen hundred in 1913 to an estimated thirty thousand in 1916. As originally planned, an age limit was set for, the Plattsburg camps this summer. No applicant under eighteen or over forty-five years of age was to be accepted. But some of the head masters of the

prominent preparatory schools of the country believed that school-boys under eighteen years of age should receive the benefits provided by the Plattsburg camps. Under the leadership of Dr. Drury, of St. Paul's School, Concord, New Hampshire, a committee was organized some weeks ago to plan a training camp for school-boys between fifteen and eighteen. The plan has been approved by General Wood and by the War Department, and such a camp will be maintained on the Government reservation at Fort Terry, on Plum Island, Long Island Sound, New York. The Fort Terry Camp is an extension of the Plattsburg idea and will be managed on the same basis and under the same general regulations as the camps at Plattsburg. It will be held from July 6 to August 10, inclusive. All applicants must have had a grammar school training or its equivalent. It is hoped and believed that there will be a large representation from the public high schools and grammar schools of the country, as well as from the private preparatory schools. The camp will be educational, democratic, and civic in the very best sense of these words. The instructors of the camp will be officers of the regular army, and the physical condition of each attendant will be given the close personal attention of competent medical authorities. The total cost to each boy, exclusive of transportation to and from the camp, will be in the neighborhood of fifty dollars. This sum will cover board, camp expenses, ammunition, uniform, and shoes. The Federal Government will provide tents, blankets, cots, pillows, ordnance,


We can think of no better way in which an American school-boy can spend five weeks out of doors than at the Fort Terry Training Camp. Further information about this camp may be obtained by addressing The Officerin-Charge, Fort Terry Training Camp, 475 Fifth Avenue, New York City. The Military Training Camps Association, 31 Nassau Street, New York City, will supply full information regarding the Training Camp movement throughout the country, with records of its growth and success.


There are sometimes interesting and exciting primary elections within the Democratic party in the Southern States, but it is not often that we are called upon to record a

general election of importance between two parties. But the recent spring contest for the Governorship between Colonel Ruffin G. Pleasant, the regular Democratic nominee, and John M. Parker, the nominee of the Progressive party, is worthy of more attention than we have seen given to it except in the New Orleans newspapers. John M. Parker is a close friend of Colonel Roosevelt's, and was the Progressive leader in 1912 in the State of Louisiana. His total vote in the election for Governor the other day was close to 50,000, while his Democratic opponent received between 75,000 and 80,000. The city of New Orleans gave Parker about 15,000, and Pleasant about 28,000. In the country districts of Louisiana Parker received about 33,000, and Pleasant about 47,000. The Third Congressional District, which now has a Progressive Congressman, as a result of the fight over the sugar duty, increased its Progressive majority over 1914, and the Progressives also made a strong entering wedge in the Seventh Congressional District, which has protective tariff inclinations and many Northern-born people.

In the estimation of the New Orleans "Times-Picayune" several important political facts stand out, the first being that forty per cent of the biggest vote cast in Louisiana since the Negro was deprived of the suffrage was polled by the Progressive candidate. In the second place, the Progressives very greatly strengthened their previous hold upon certain portions of the State. In the third place, the vote in the city of New Orleans was very large, considering the weakness of the Parker political organization there, and it seems to presage a fight of the reform element for civic control.

There is strong opposition in Louisiana to the Wilson tariff policies and strong sympathy for protection. There is also great opposition to the old Democratic ring methods in that State. It is much more difficult to set up the two-party cleavage in the South, because of the fear that the Negro may hold the balance of power, but where the elements of economy and moral protest are sufficiently strong the cleavage is nevertheless sure to come.


When will the people of the United States learn to treat their public business as they treat their private business? The New York

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City Post-Office furnishes just now a striking illustration of the inefficiency of the American public. The New York Post-Office is an efficient and successful institution. In the calendar year ending on December 31, 1915, it did a gross business of $30,000,000. Its operating expenses amounted to $10,000,000. These figures show a gross profit of $20,000,000. The executive under whom this remarkable showing has been made has been trained to the postal business from his young manhood. He began his work as a letter-carrier in the New York Post-Office, and to-day is the head of this institution, whose figures we have just quoted. The stockholders of any private manufacturing or merchandising corporation which made such a financial showing and had such an executive would be literally tumbling over one another to retain his services if they possibly could. But we Americans do not handle our public business in that way. What we must have just now in the New York Post-Office is not a good postmaster but a good Democrat.

The President of the United States and the senior Senator from the State of New York, realizing that what we want is primarily a good Democrat and secondarily a good postmaster, are doing their level best to fulfill our wishes. Senator O'Gorman would like to have Mr. Joseph Johnson take Postmaster Morgan's chair. Mr. Johnson was formerly a newspaper man in Atlanta, Georgia, and became Fire Commissioner of the city of New York under Mayor Gaynor. When ex-Judge McCall became Tammany's candidate for Mayor, Mr. Johnson became Mr. McCall's campaign manager, against Mr. Mitchel, who was elected on the Fusion ticket. He naturally ceased to be Fire Commissioner when Mayor Mitchel took office. So far the President has refused to appoint Mr. Johnson, apparently because he is not the right kind of Democrat. He has asked the Hon. Robert Wagner, whom he thinks is the right kind of Democrat, to accept the postmastership, but Mr. Wagner has declined.

While the President and Senator O'Gorman are discussing the exact degree of Democracy which the New York Post-Office ought to have, the present Postmaster, Mr. Morgan, goes right on doing a business of nearly $100,000 a day, at a gross profit to the people of over $50,000 a day. But we are an idealistic Nation. We do not care for the almighty dollar. Revering the memory of Jefferson as we do, we must have the right


kind of Democracy in the New York PostOffice, no matter how much we have to pay for it. When Postmaster Morgan, who has served the people of the United States in the New York Post-Office efficiently and successfully for forty-three years, is supplanted by an ideal Democrat, some sordid private corporation will undoubtedly avail itself of Mr. Morgan's great abilities as a business executive. The private corporation will not ask him whether he is a Democrat, a Republican, a Progressive, or a Socialist. He will be simply asked to do the work intrusted to him, to do it well, and present his balancesheet as the best testimony of his efficiency. But no true American wants the Post-Office conducted upon the sordid basis of a private corporation. Its great function, of course, is, not to carry letters and newspapers, but to carry elections.


Whenever Congress appropriates money for a site for a public building the value of a possible site for such a building doubles or trebles. And when Congress appropriates a sum for the building itself, or a lump sum for both site and building, it is a familiar fact that the value of the land and the cost of the structure are quickly adapted to coincide with the appropriations.

Last January, in the House of Representatives, Representative Clark, of Florida, Chairman of the Committee on Public Buildings, said. as reported:

In the very nature of things it is utterly impossible for Congress to determine to the dollar what a public building for each and every city and town in the United States should cost, and therefore a measure of discretion had to be lodged in the executive department charged with their construction.

In February Representative Garner, of Texas, spoke as follows, as reported:

There are half a dozen places in my district where Federal buildings are being erected or have recently been constructed at a cost to the Government far in excess of the actual needs of the communities where they are located. Take Uvalde, my home town, for instance. We are putting up a post-office down there at a cost of $60,000, when a $5,000 building would be entirely adequate for our needs. This is mighty bad business for Uncle Sam, and I'll admit it; but the other fellows in Congress have been doing it for a long time and I can't make them quit. Now we Democrats are in

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