Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Today -100: May 2, 1912: Of delegates, plots against Canada, shiftless gangs, and prince-aviators

Because Theodore Roosevelt lost the popular vote in Massachusetts (74,808 to 71,158), he asks the elected delegates-at-large he won to ignore their pledges and vote for Taft at the Republican National Convention, which is jolly sporting of him (his larger game is to turn around and demand that the will of the people also be respected in the many states throughout the US where the Republican machine is thwarting it, and especially to pressure the 20 Taft delegates from Illinois to follow the overwhelming preference of Ill. voters)(it also seems that many of the votes for Taft delegates were invalidated because there were 9 Taft delegates on the ballot and many people voted for all of them, but were only supposed to vote for 8).

The Mexican ambassador says the current revolution isn’t a real revolution, just a bunch of brigands and Indians, and will be put down within three months.

A Senate resolution asked the president if it’s true that the Japanese are trying to take over the harbor of Magdalena Bay in Baja California, Mexico, as a naval base. The White House says no, but that an American company did try to sell some land in the area to a Japanese syndicate. So the Senate is still bubbling with racist paranoia and muttering about the Monroe Doctrine.

Speaking of conspiracy theories, our Headline of the Day -100 comes from the Daily Mail in London: “The Plot Against Canada: Amazing Revelation.” See, last week when President Taft published his private correspondence with Roosevelt, he included one from January 1911 about the Canadian Tariff Reciprocity Treaty, which later failed in the Canadian Parliament because of fears that the US was secretly planning to absorb Canada. Taft wrote that the treaty would make Canada “only an adjunct of the United States.” He meant economically rather than literally (he told TR that much of Canadian business would move to Chicago and NY), but the Daily Mail, as is its wont, is quite upset.

IWW marchers are still on their way to San Diego, and the LA Times is there with up-to-the-minute unbiased coverage, and an unusual number of sub-headlines: “Mischief Makers / Not Invited, Unwelcome / Shiftless Gang Arrives Here on Its Way South / Is Run Out of Every Town Along the Road / Mobilization at San Diego to Rant and Revile.”

Prince Axel of Denmark is going to take flying lessons.

1 comment:

  1. Hmm. Comments are different now. Think I like it the way it was.

    Re the conspiracy theories.

    I linked to this story here before about how American bankers may have financed the Japanese war machine:

    "This amazing story begins with the war between Russia and Japan in 1904. Jacob Schiff, who was head of the New York investment firm Kuhn, Loeb and Company, had raised the capital for large war loans to Japan. It was due to this funding that the Japanese were able to launch a stunning attack against the Russians at Port Arthur and the following year to virtually decimate the Russian fleet. In 1905 the Mikado awarded Jacob Schiff a medal, the Second Order of the Treasure of Japan, in recognition of his important role in that campaign."

    Seems plausible that Americans wanted to sell land to the Japanese despite the hostilities between the two countries (some of the first war plans were made in preparation of war with Japan in the late 1800s).

    In fact, Jacob Schiff owned land in Baha Mexico and proposed settlement of Russian Jews there.

    So it's plausible that Schiff, who had railroad interests in Baha, and had ties to the Japanese, wanted to make this deal? Just speculating, but seems like the Senate story refers to a specific plan so maybe they are just being diplomatic by not naming names.

    One also wonders if Japan wasn't being goaded to attack the U.S. even back then. Maybe this was a false leak simply to make it seem like Japan had designs on America.