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The action of the United States Supreme Court, briefly referred to in last month's Review, in smashing the employers' liability law, in killing the Erdman act and legalizing the blacklisting, and in outlawing the boycott by interpreting the Sherman anti-trust law to cover trade unions, has, as might be expected, aroused tremendous interest among the organized workers throughout the country. Of course, the Supreme Court is being denounced in bitter terms by the unionists, while the capitalistic organs and spokesmen chuckle merrily and declare with mock seriousness that "our courts will not uphold class legislation, such as is sought by the labor trust." President Van Cleave, of the National Association of Manufacturers, says piously that capital and labor ought be friends and dwell together in peace and harmony, and that the Supreme Court is bringing about this happy state of affairs. One of the big plute organs, the New York Commercial, says gleefully: "Only think of it—the great 'anti-trust' law, framed and enacted to mulct wicked Capital, now turned on honest Labor!"

The labor-haters did not hesitate long in following up the advantage that they gained in the decision of the Loewe Co. against the United Hatters. As was pointed out in the Review some time ago, the Loewe Co. sued the hatters for $80,000 damages because of a boycott placed on that concern's scab products. Under the Sherman act the complainant may recover three-fold the damages sustained, plus cost of suit, attorneys fees, etc. The Loewe Co. claims a total of about $300,000 and brought attachment proceedings against the defendants, tieing up about $180,000 of their property. Having received their cue from the Supreme Court, the unionsmashers are becoming quite active. Daniel Davenport, a prominent member of the National Association of Manufacturers and counsel for Loewe & Co., announces that hundreds of concerns that are on the unfair list of the American Federation of Labor and affiliated organizations are preparing to take action against the unions to recover damages sustained on account of boycotts or institute criminal proceedings. Many unionists of New Orleans have been indicted as conspirators and violators of the Sherman anti-trust law, while in New York five officials of the Typographical Union have been fined various sums and sentenced to imprisonment. Actions are also contemplated in Philadelphia, San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Pittsburg and other places. The cases of the MaebetaEvans glass combine against the Flint Glass Workers' Union, in which over a million dollars is involved, and the Bucks Stove & Range Co. agaist the A. F. of L. are still to be decided by the United States Supreme Court, but nobody is quite foolish enough

to believe that that court is likely to reverse itself, which would be an unheard of proceeding where labor interests are concerned.

The Sherman anti-trust law, under which the Loewe case was brought against the hatters, was enacted in 1887. It remained a dead letter until the Pullman strike in 1894, when Grover Cleveland utilized the law for the purpose of destroying the American Railway Union. Previously, in 1890, Congress had used the Sherman antitrust law as a basis to pass an act "to protect trade and commerce against unlawful restraints and monopolies."

In April, 1893, just one year before the Pullman strike, Judge Taft, now secretary of war, utilized the anti-trust law and the interstate commerce act as excuses to issue injunctions prohibiting the engineers on the Toledo & Ann Arbor railway from striking. The following year, 1894, Taft granted an injunction against the employes of the Cincinnati Southern railway to restrain them from compelling the road to boycott Pullman cars, and Organizer Phelan, of the A. R. U. was thrown in jail for contempt of court in advocating a strike and boycott. Thus Taft not only became the "father of injunctions," but likewise the pioneer in outlawing labor boycotts, as his acts were later sustained by the United States Supreme Court in the famous Debs case decision.

Section 1, of the act of 1890, declares that "every contract, combination in the form of trust or otherwise, or conspiracy, in restraint of trade or commerce among the several states, or with foreign nations, is hereby declared to be illegal." Provision is also made for a punishment of not less than one year or a fine not exceeding $5,000, or both, for violation of this section.

It is in Section 4 that Taft and the injunction judges were given their power. That section invests Circuit Courts of the United States with jurisdiction to "prevent and restrain violations of this act." It also empowers courts to issue "temporary restraining orders (injunctions) as shall be deemed just in the premises."

Section 7 is the provision under which the Loewe Co. proceeded in claiming damages against the United Hatters of America, and there is no gainsaying the fact that the paragraph is plain enough. It says:

"Any person who shall be injured in his business or property by any other person or corporation by reason of anything forbidden or declared to be unlawful by this act, may sue therefor in any Circuit Court of the United States in the district in which the defendant resides or is found, without respect to the amount in controversy, and shall recover three-fold the damages by him sustained, and the costs of the suit, including a reasonable attorney's fees."

There is still another important provision that permits the United States Supreme Court to override any state law, so that if any state declared unions exempt from anti-trust laws within its own boundary plaintiffs can appeal to the United States Supreme Court and secure judgments.

Those who have paid attention to the history of labor in the courts anticipated the Loewe verdict and were not at all surprised. Indeed, how could things be otherwise with capitalism in control of the governing functions? The tools of capital would betray their own class if they did not decide against labor in every crisis, and it is only those who persist in deluding themselves with the absurd notion that there is no class warfare who are surprised and chagrined. Probably if they continue to get their bumps regularly some day

their conceit will leave them long enough to permit new ideas to penetrate their stubborn and thick skulls. But it is to be deplored that the innocent are compelled to suffer with the guilty-that those who have pointed out the necessity for political action on the part of labor are constantly victimized, while egotistical chumps, who are never happier than when they can fawn about or crawl upon their bellies before the throne of capitalism, are lauded as "great leaders" and escape without much inconvenience to themselves.

How many times have the Socialists, when they stood in conventions and pointed out the trend of events and the natural developments in the class struggle, been ridiculed as "calamity howlers," "prophets of evil," and what not? In the Boston convention of the A. F. of L., for example, where the writer made a report showing how the British trade unionists were mulcted in the famous Taff Vale decision (a case exactly similar to the Loewe suit, which was brought the same year the Boston convention was held), and how the British unionists and Socialists were pulling together to put labor men in Parliament to protect their interests Gompers, instead of profiting by the experience of the workers across the sea, made a bitter attack upon the Socialists, and, to the delight of the capitalist bunch in the Civic Federation, tried to make it appear that the Socialists, although trade unionists almost wholly, were enemies of organized labor. "Economically," Gompers declared, in his preroration, "you are unsound; socially, you are wrong; industrially, you are an impossibility." The capitalist press and politicians from one end of the country to the other applauded Gompers' speech "smashing socialism" and characterized its author as the greatest leader that stood on two feet. Well, the Socialists philosophically concluded to let the future decide whether they were unsound, wrong and impossible.

Now, after the short space of four years, we have Taff Valeism right here, and in a more malignant form than the British variety. Across the water capitalism merely attacked and confiscated union funds. Here capitalism not only aims to mulct the union treasuries, but the little bank savings and homes of workers who have practiced self-denial for years in order to save their wives and children from destitution and beggary are attacked. What can be said of such leadership that damns those who dare to sound a warning note and woos the workers into fancied security up to the point that they are dragged before the bar of capitalism, and stripped of their few belongings, lashed by the blacklist cat-o'-nine-tails, and informed that they may be ground to pieces and their masters are not liable for damages to support their families! Could the black slaves of half a century ago be treated worse?

Let it be understood right here that the Socialists, although secure in the knowledge that their principles are based upon the rock of everlasting truth and that their methods will thiumph, harbor no grudge against individuals or organizations of workers because of their shortsightedness. 'Tis human to err. In fact, we admire good fighters who consistently and as decently as possible battle for what they believe to be right. But there comes a time, in the natural order of progress, when either evolutionary facts or individual beliefs must give way, and usually it is the latter. Nor is it humiliating for any man who has fought a good fight to admit that he was in error and changes his methods. Wise men change their tactics; fools never do. Gompers and his friends have honestly and courageously, much as we question their judgment, fought along

industrial lines to gain what the Socialists seek to accomplish politically, and the former lost. Are Gompers and his friends big enough to acknowledge that the time has arrived for action, say along similar lines pursued by the British working people?

Looking at the situation from the most unbiased standpoint possible as a Socialist and member of a trade union, and with no ill will against Sam Gompers as a man (for I think well of the old scout despite some of his, what appear to me, unfair methods), I am firmly convinced that the hour has struck when calm and cool consideration of the present crisis is absolutely necessary. Let us sink our differences of the past, as we did, in fact, at the Norfolk convention, and get together in a national conference, as is the desire of the rank and file everywhere, and proceed along the lines of the British Socialists and trade unionists and include the farmers, if they will come, and organize a political combination that will strike terror to the hearts of the fossilized Supreme Court, the plutocratic Senate, the petty Czar Cannon and his House, and the cheap-skate politicians throughout the land. Let the executive council of the A. F. of L. issue a call for a conference to affiliated organizations, representing, approximately, 2,000,000 members; to non-affiliated bodies, with 1,000,000 members; to the Farmers' Union, with 1,000,000 members; to the Socialist party, with practically 500,000 voters; to the Society of Equity, with 100,000 members, and other friendly organizations, and, even if only one-half send representatives, the little, insignificant crowd of plutocrats in control of affairs will sit up and take notice. It would not only not be necessary for any organization in an alliance of this kind to surrender its principles or organization, but there would be such mutual assistance and co-operation as ould gain immediate attention and respect from the great unorganized mass to bring them into touch and close sympathy with the movement, and lead to better things in the future.

The organized workers as represented by the A. F. of L. not only demand political action, but if it is denied them they will either desert their organization or turn on their officers or so-called leaders. The old plan of pledging Congressional candidates is played out, as everybody knows that the politicians promise everything and fulfill nothing. To organize a separate Labor party of only A. F. of L. bodies would prove suicidal, as it would be sectional and appeal only to a branch of the labor class. Let us have a truly representative political movement, to include all the organizers, speakers, newspapers and other parts of the machinery that make for a great party.


Socialist Political Unity. It would seem as though there ought not to be much hesitation in realizing the advantages to our movement in having all the Socialist forces marshalled under one political banner, and that if nothing else should bring us to our senses, the ridicule that is heaped upon us in the capitalist press ought to be sufficient. That is the way it strikes us in this office, and so we express ourselves both in our Finnish and in our English publications. We are very much confirmed in this position by reading the arguments against uniting with the S. L. P. that are to be met with in some quarters in our own party. They may be summarized as follows,

That the S. L. P. have been in the past "a disturbing element". That they have thrown considerable mud at men who are prominent in our party.

That their voting strength has fallen off while ours has increased, thus proving, it is claimed, that, on questions of tactics, we have been in the right while they have been in the wrong.

We are much inclined to think that the S. L. P. have been a disturbing element, and that it is a good thing for our Party that they have been. We are inclined to think that the debt we owe them, for keeping our movement out of the bogs and quagmires of opportunism, is very great. That they have thrown considerable mud at men who are prominent in our Party is also probably true, but that fact can not be taken into consideration in the least when the best interests of the working-class require unity on the political field. The argument that the increase of our voting strength, as compared with theirs, justifies our tactics is the quintessence of Opportunism.

In fact it is worse. This is exactly the line of argument adopted by the workingman who votes the Republican or the Democratic ticket. He tells us that we have no chance to win, and that there is a chance of electing "good men", and "friends of labor" on the capitalistic ticket. The same arguments exactly. The amendment to Lee's motion, as proposed by National Committeeman King, ought to prevail, that is, to elect a special Committee to confer with the Committee elected by the S. L. P. to consider plans of Union, rather than to designate as our representatives the incoming Nat'l Ex. Committe, three of whom are personally objectionable to the S. L. P.

So let's get together. Union is strength. One all-embracing Industrial Unionism is what we need, and one all-embracing Socialist Party and both revolutionary to the core.

The Wage-Slave, Hancock, Mich.

A Proletarian Criticism. In his article on "Woman and the Socialist Movement", in the February Review, Spargo repeats the old

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