Saturday, April 15, 2017
Today -100: April 15, 1917: Wherein is explained what Jesus thought of peace at any price, or something
The House of Representatives unanimously passes the Seven Billion Dollar Bill to finance the war, though Socialist Meyer London only votes “present.” It includes a $3 billion loan to the Allies. The bonds will be tax-free.
Woodrow Wilson creates a Committee on Public Information, i.e. censorship and propaganda. It will be run by George Creel, a journalist, editor, joke writer, etc., who helped run Wilson’s re-election campaign. It’s considered important that censorship be run by (authoritarian) civilians rather than the military.
This is as good a time as any to mention the introduction, some time this month, of this poster,
based on Britain’s similarly posed Lord Kitchener posters. It was created by an illustrator named James Montgomery Flagg, if you can believe it. He based Uncle Sam on... himself.
The New England Methodist Conference comes out in favor of the war: “Peace at any price is as far from our sanction as it is, we believe, from the New Testament of Our Lord.” It also calls for prohibition as a war measure.
Navy Secretary Josephus Daniels rejects an offer from businessmen Benjamin and Anderson Gratz of $5,000 as a reward for the first US merchant ship to sink an enemy sub. Daniels thinks “money rewards for such bravery is not in keeping with the spirit of our day.”
Headline of the Day -100:
Theodore Roosevelt’s youngest son (19) joins the Canadian Aviation Corps, which will train him as a pilot for service in the US version. But maybe not well enough (spoiler alert). Quentin’s older brother Archie graduates Harvard and gets married.
The NYT mentions Lenin again, chiefly as a supporter of peace.