Monday, February 07, 2011

Today -100: February 7, 1911: Of income tax, spies, fishermen on the ice, and race riots

The NYT opposes the proposed 16th Amendment for an income tax (whose ratification is about to be considered by the NY Legislature) as an idea from a bygone age “when it was still thought that the Government ought to do almost everything for everybody with the taxes which other people would pay. The time has arrived when people generally are preferring lower costs of living to the hopes of beneficence through taxation”. The Times suggests (rightly, for all I know) that the Amendment was part of a deal to buy votes for the Republican tariff bill.

The Spy Bill passes the House. It would make it illegal to make drawings or photographs onboard battleships or in navy yards or forts without permission, or to sell such information to foreign governments.

Russia adopts mandatory elementary-school education.

The NJ Legislature is considering Governor Woodrow Wilson’s reform proposals. Some of them: Direct primaries for governor & congresscritters. No one to be allowed to run for the Legislature unless they pledge to vote for whoever receives the most votes at primaries for US Senator. Ballots to contain the names of all candidates, replacing whatever system they have now.

12 black men and 3 black women are beaten and threatened with lynching during a race riot in Chicago by white people who objected to them moving into their neighborhood.

253 Finnish fishermen are swept out to sea on an ice floe during a gale. When ships are sent to rescue them, they refuse. Don’t ask me why.

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