The Cortland Democrat, Friday, September 2, 1892.
Peck's Ridiculous Statistics.
Charles F. Peck, Commissioner of Statistics for this State, has issued a report intended to bolster the case of protection. As a statistical product it is absolutely valueless. As a political document its absurdity will defeat its object.
Mr. Peck has undertaken to show that the McKinley law has increased wages and products in manufacturing industries. He has selected his establishments and has invited their proprietors, the beneficiaries of the present tariff law, to furnish him with his facts. He has accepted the testimony of interested parties and tries to impose them upon the public as a serious official document, the result of his own investigations. In other words Mr. Peck's report was made, like the McKinley tariff law, by the manufacturers—by the people who expect to reap the benefits. They first prepared the bill and are now reporting on its effect in the State of New York. In aid to this pretty scheme Mr. Peck refuses to make public the letters on which he bases his assertions.
The statistics themselves are worthy of the method by which they were gathered. They pretend to show that--
Of the sixty-eight industries included 75 per cent of them show an increased average yearly earnings in the year 1891, while the total average increase of yearly earnings of the 285,000 employes was $21.11 each. The average increase of yearly earnings in the employes in 51 trades showing an increase was $43.96 each in 1891 as compared with 1890.
They do not attempt to show that the rate of wages has been increased in a single instance; that a single additional cent is paid in this State to any individual for any stated piece of work. They are declarations made in secret to an apparently willing tool by persons who are pecuniarily interested in causing the public to believe them, that in 1891 the manufacturers produced more than they did in 1890, and that consequently a larger aggregate of wages was earned.
According to the report which Mr. Aldrich avers was unanimously agreed to by his associates, and which has not been disputed by any Protectionist, wages rose in fifteen industries, only two of which can be said to be protected, .75 of one per cent, and fell in fifteen highly protected interests .84 of one per cent. Mr. Peck publishes the extravagant claims of protected manufactures as undisputed fact and contradicts Mr. Aldrich, whose figures were subject to the careful revision of Senator Carlisle and some clever and dispassionate statisticians.
No importance will be attached to this ridiculous document. Workingmen know whether or not their wages have been increased; and they are not to be deceived by this clumsy effort to make them doubt the evidence of their own senses and pockets.
Mr. C. F. Peck, formerly of the Hornellsville Tribune was appointed to the office of Commissioner of Labor Statistics in 1883 and has held the office ever since. Last fall he wanted a place on the Democratic State ticket and made a break for the nomination of Comptroller. To further his claims to the nomination, he secured the active support of several labor organizations and the leaders of the party were besieged by the labor leaders to nominate him as a sort of recognition of the claims of the wage earners. Gov. Hill knew that it would not do to nominate Peck. He wasn't broad enough to fill the position and he had been richly paid for all he had done for the party, and the Governor was obliged to sit down on his aspirations.
Last May Peck wrote his partner at Hornellsville, that his annual report, which he was then working on, would knock the Republicans and the McKinley bill completely out. Three or four days ago he published a statement saying that his report would show an increase in wages paid to employes throughout the State under the McKinley bill. Whether he is trying to get a bit of revenge out of the party for being ignored last fall or not, no one can tell, but it is pretty certain that Peck's statement of three or four days since and the statement contained in his letter to his partner in May last do not agree. How will he reconcile both reports with the truth?
Balancing the Paradoxes.
No acrobat on a tight rope ever had a more ticklish task before him than have the champions of McKinleyism in balancing the paradoxes of Protection.
Their chief organ in this city is busy in trying to prove:
1. That putting a tax on an article cheapens it to customers.
2. That cheapening the product enables the manufacturer to increase or to "maintain" wages.
3. That the cost of food can be reduced to workingmen, while the farmer gets higher prices for his products on account of a tariff on foodstuffs which constitute the main part of our exports.
4. That the foreigners really pay the duty, though Mr. McKinley, in the kindness of his heart, taxes them only $180,000,000 a year towards the expenses of the government.
It is a very nice piece of tight-rope walking which the defenders of taxing a nation into prosperity have undertaken —New York World.
Messrs, Lincoln & Whaite have commenced to move some things to Tully.
W. N. Jones has three good carpenters at work on the addition to his house. They are Capt. J. L. Goddard, Morris Holmes and P. J. Vincent.
Mrs. Sarah Heath has returned from Sheriff Miller's in Cortland, and will keep house for Hosea Kenney in place of Mrs. Kate Grady.
Edward Dodd, of Syracuse, was in town Monday and Tuesday.
Walter Beattle, wife and daughter, of Syracuse, stopped over Sunday at Wm. Beattle's.
Bernard O'Neil died last Monday. His death was caused by paralysis, the first stroke of which came upon him about a year ago. Mr. O'Neil came to this town from New York just before the war, and began business as a wagon maker. He was a diligent worker, an exemplary citizen and a kind and cheerful neighbor. He was devoted to his family, from which he was seldom absent, and a faithful member of the Catholic church. His funeral was very largely attended by his Catholic and Protestant friends. He leaves a widow and four children.
Sylvester Brown and the Stowel boys have gone hop picking.
Mr. Fred Griffin and wife of Candor visited friends in town last week.
Mr. Alex. Wheeler and Mr. Harrington of Dryden were in town on Monday.
Mr. George Wilcox of Syracuse spent a few days last week with friends in town.
Mrs. Jaques was called to Cleveland, O., last week to see her son Bert who is there sick.
Of course we don't' know Mr. Jerome Hathway of Cortland, was in town on Sunday.
Mrs. Basford of Pennsylvania, is visiting her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Luther Hamilton.
Dr. E. O. Kingman of Cortland was in town on Monday on his way to the Newark Valley fair.
Mrs. Marcenia Conrad, who has been visiting her parents, has returned to her home at Rochester.
Last week was picnic week in this vicinity. On Wednesday last a few of the Christian Society went to Cascade for a picnic for the Sunday school, but as more grown people than children attended, we conclude that it was an old folks picnic. On the same day the G. A. R. boys of Richford held a picnic at John Myers on Michigan Hill. Friday the colored people held a picnic at Alex. Thompson's on Michigan Hill and there was a good turnout. All seemed to enjoy themselves greatly. Then came Saturday with the Methodists and they have the name of overdoing things you know. They came to the front with a picnic at Luther Hamilton's, for the Sunday school children, with over a hundred and thirty by actual count, and judging from appearances they seemed to enjoy themselves. They thought the day too short but it is a day that will live in the memory of all who were present.
Well, as was published last week we had a political meeting at the hotel hall on Friday evening with a fair attendance. There were about forty Republican voters and the rest of the audience consisted of women, children and Democrats, as always is the case. The drum corps was there also. It consisted of three, one colored and two whites. The fife was played with much skill, while the snare drum came in on time but where, oh, where was the bass. Well he had so much on his mind he could not do everything at once, for with the disappointment of not having Mr. Barry present as was published, he felt that all of his strength was exhausted, but they sent some one in his place so the number was good. He appeared before the audience and remarked that he could make a fizzle and no one has even disputed but what he did. After he was exhausted, A. E. Seymour came before the audience and with much eloquence and grace he read a speech to the audience advocating high protection and free trade. He seemed to exaggerate as much, so the Prohibitionists say, as he did eight years ago, when he was here with a tent and advocating Prohibition. Now, where do such men vote? If they work for the money, they work where the most of it is. If they talk out of "principle" their principle must be very changeable. Judging from the past who can say but what he will vote the Democrat ticket this fall. If it should happen to be his time to change his colors, about November 1st, look out for a quiet vote from him and his kind.
CHIP. [pen name of correspondent.]
Another heir at Perrin Anthony's, No. 9.
Mrs. F. D. Allen is entertaining her only brother from Allegany Co.
Hop-picking commences Sept. 1st this year. Only four yards in town.
Several young men of this town have gone to Madison Co. to engage in hop-picking.
Ernest Barber, of Allegany Co., is the guest of his parents, Mr. and Mrs. B. L. Barber.
M. G. Frisbie and wife went to DeRuyter last seventh day to attend a funeral at that place.
Morgan Maxson was quite badly hurt recently by getting his foot caught in a wheel rake.
Rev. B. F. Rogers and wife of this town were thrown out of their carriage last Monday in Homer village and quite badly hurt. They were carried to the house of Leroy Taft.
E. D. Crosley has moved his mother's remains from South Spafford cemetery to the Scott cemetery for the present. The monument has also been moved here and will wait further orders.
Quite a number of our people have gone hop-picking.
The East Homer ball nine expect to cross bats with the Taylor Center nine at Cheningo on Thursday.
Mr. and Mrs. J. N. Rose and family, who have been spending a vacation with friends, returned home on Monday of this week.
Mr. B. F. Walter our station agent informs us that over fifty persons went on an excursion to Ithaca on Tuesday and that he received over $80 for tickets on that day.
The Webster family of Rochester will give a musical entertainment at the M. E. church in this place on Friday evening of this week. They come very highly recommended.
Rev. F. H. Hinman of Boston, Mass., delivered an excellent sermon at the M. E. church in this place on Sunday last. His text was taken from St. Matthew, 5th Chapter and 10th verse.
Rev. F. H. Hinman and family and Mr. and Mrs. H. M. Murdough left on Tuesday morning for their homes in Boston, Mass. They have been spending the past two months with friends here.
The Epworth League services of the M. E. church last Sunday night were quite largely attended and very interesting. About twenty-five interesting testimonies were given and much interest manifested. DeWitt Stevens was the leader.