THE MICHIGAN DAILY
E MICHIGAN DAILY
1 Publication of the Summer Session
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Member of the Western Conference Editorial Association
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-1934., ,i9; jA
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Balarine Of Power...
0 NE OF THE MOST FAMILIAR as
well as notorious of national pol-
icies is that of the "balance of power" with regard
to foreign relations. Particularly familiar is the
application of that policy by its foremost expo-
nent, Great Britain, until its abandonment before
the turn of the century. With its abandonment
the doctrine apparently went into discard, but to
some Britain's policies today appear to indicate
overtures toward a resumption of the doctrine.
The present naval pact between Great Britain
a d Germany, recognizing on the part of the Eng-
lish a German navy with a strength of 35 per cent
its own, is, with the exception of a minor break
which occurred following the war, the first step
away from the Allied association which predom-
frsted the foreign policy of Great Britain after
abandoning the "balance of power." This fact,
coupled with the claims that the British have
become alarmed at the overwhelming alignment
igainst Germany, form the basis for the conten-.
tion that they are reverting to their most tra-
Such a contention may be contradicted, how-
ever, by those who see in the pact a logical and
practic41 means of recognizing the de facto revi-
fion of the thoroughly discredited Versailles Treaty
Much as France may resent it, the Versailles
Treaty must ultimately be formally revised; its
unilateral revision is already an accomplished fact.
Following the reasoning that with Germany al-
ready having abrogated the Versailles agreement
and no limits being placed upon it by that treaty,
it is not difficult to assume that the British have
simply given formal recognition to an actual
state of affairs and in so doing have inserted a
measure of security by the new limitations.
To those who concede the British to be superior
exponents of common sense in their governmental
affairs, it is not difficult to accept this latter rea-
soning, rather than to accept the contention that
the naval pact marks a return of the "balance
Toward An Active
ODAY THERE EXIST two schools
of diplomatic thought in this coun-
try; the nationalists and the internationalists.
During the past, the former group has held sway
over our government's foreign policy. Harking
back to a largely misinterpreted statement of
Washington's to the effect that the United States
steer clear of foreign entanglements, they argue
for American isolation and neutrality in matters
which relate to world politics.
However laudable the theoretical position of the
nationalists may be, we contend that isolation
is no longer possible in this present world of com-
plicated and overlapping international activities.
Commerce, if nothing else, has irrevocably linked
together the nations of the world, and - whether
we like it or not - the fact must be recognized.
We need to be realistic about this diplomatic
"game." That is what we are asking in advo-
cating a definite and active foreign policy. The
nationalists recognize only half the facts involved.
Consequently, they make hit and miss ventures into
world politics and a chaotic foreign policy results.
At one time our government forges ahead of
other nations in taking a definite stand on an issue
of world importance and exposes us to the acute
criticism and ridicule of the nation opposed; again,
when a definite and concerted stand should have
been taken, more often than not we assumed a
passive policy and drew abuse from those nations
concerned. This uncertain attitude of ours leads
only to diplomatic unfriendliness, because no na-
tion can predict what our policy will be when an
issue arises. Certainly this is not conducive to a
satisfactory international life.
A definite and active foreign policy - a forceful
one. if necessary -would eliminate much of the
nients'to which we are a party, has much to say
about our foreign policy, and that its influence
has been a restraining one.
Our interests, both national and private, reach
into every country of the world and we cannotsin-
telligently hope to ignore their actions and still
protest that we are working for world peace and
cooperation. A definite and active foreign policy can
strive just as vigorously for peace as easily as it
can become involved in foreign "entanglements."
Japa's Empty Till
rJHE OLD ADAGE about a silver lining to every
cloud apparently applies to the new business
depression with which Japan is threatened. Ordi-
narily such an event would be deplored alike for
its possible effects on the world as on Japan. Should
the new depression go far it might well have ser-
ious consequences. But these are in part, at least,
offset by the probable effect of the depression on
Japan's aggressive foreign policy. It has long
been apparent that Japan's basic lack of the raw
materials of modern industrialism' might some day
act as a brake on her expansionist tendencies.
True, this poverty has been till now one of the mo-
tivating forces behind this policy. But there comes
a time when the cost of waging war abroad be-
comes well nigh unbearable.
Japan is approaching this point. Her national
debt has risen at an almost Rooseveltian rate
during the last two years. The banks, insurance
companies and big corporations are overloaded
with government paper. The yen has depreciated
heavily. The army and navy are demanding larger
sums each month, And now, to cap the succession
of unfortunate events, Japanese exports are falling
off and even the munitions plants are meeting
with a slower demand for their output. Prices on
the stock exchange have fallen drastically during
the last six weeks. One of the few favorable signs
is that internal prices of retail goods and food re-
main low so that there is, as yet, no severe suf-
Two things are clear: that the policy of expan-
sign in China will require more, not less, money;
and that the government cannot indefinitely con-
tinue to support the army and navy by what
amounts to forced loans. In other words, either
there will be a severe financial crisis, or the
army will have to curtail its imperialistic activities
on the Asiatic mainland.
-New York Herald Tribune.
By KIRKE SIMPSON
WASHINGTON - A backward glance at the
course of Washington news from the hour
President Roosevelt popped his tax message at
Congress, discloses about as strange a spectacle as
ever catches the eye of a disinterested onlooker,
if there be such. It easily is deduced that not
only the reporters but also many high ranking
political talents in both parties as well, felt like the
man trapped in a revolving door. The tax situation
wouldn't stay put long enough to write about it
with any assurance that what was written would
not be outdated before it could be printed.
Perhaps President Roosevelt and the handful
of "closest up" White House legislative lieutenants
knew the exact whys and wherefores of each shift
of the scene. No one else even pretended to. Things
moved too fast.
HERE IS ABOUT the chronology. The Presi-
dential message mapped a new tax policy
aimed at curbing "vast" fortunes for economic and
sociological reasons. It was accepted by almost
everyone as something to ponder until next ses-
sion. The exceptions were Senators La Follette
and Borah and about a score of senatorial "round
robiners" who signed up to push the business
at this session., More Democrats than Republican
irregulars signed up.
A hurried White House conference ensued. Out
of that came what sounded like official word that
the major elements of the presidential tax pro-
posals would be attached as a rider to the nuisance
tax continuation resolution and shot through Con-
gress in less than a week.
A roar of protest at "unseemly haste" went up.
Clark of Missouri, one of the Sehate "round rob-
iners" served what seemed notice of a filibuster
against such tactics. It even developed that treas-
ury tax experts, relied upon for details, would be
ready with suggestions after only a day or two
more of preparation. The House, jealous of its
single unshared constitutional function of originat-
ing revenue legislation, gave unmistakable signs
Then the President personally advised the press
that the five-day schedule was all a mistake
anyhow. It developed that while the White House
wanted certain tax action at this session, it was
not intent upon doing it in legislative rider fashion
on the nuisance tax resolution.
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Learning By Doing
PRACTICE does not make perfect writes James L.
Mursell, professor of education, in the Atlantic
Monthly. A beginner, he says, has more practice
in failures than successes; therefore continued
practice should add to his list of failures. Learning
requires a breach with established ways of doing
things - a flash of insight that forms a new pat-
tern of ideas.
But this flash comes, according to the professor,
"after making many attempts at a skillful act."
Practically it would seem to be largely a dis-
tinction without a difference. The flash does not
come by merely siting down and waiting for it to
come. - Therefore it would appear that the old
maxim of "If at first you don't succeed, try try
again," still holds. If repetition doesn't do the
trick it does set off the flash.
More important, however, is Dr. Mursell's conclu-
sion that a person of 30, 40, or "even 50" can learn
almost anything better than he could at 15 if he
"wills" to learn'it. To keep the will screwed up to
the sticking point, however, is not easy, Dr. Mur-
sell points out. One difficulty he encounters is
vanity -it seems shameful to some adults to begin
a new study at primary levels. But then there
never has been a royal road to learning.
--San Francisco Chronicle.
The wisdom and strength of the constitution
explain our persistencies as a going concern in a
world where almost all other democracies have
failed. - Bainbridge Colby.
There never has been nor never will be freedom
when powers of government are lodged in a man
or in a group of men. - Herbert Hoover.
The SOAP BOX
Letters published in this column should not be
construed as expressing the editorial opinion of The
Daily. Anonymous contributions will be disregarded.
The names of communicants will, however, be regarded
as confidential upon request. Contributors are asked
to be brief, the editor reserving the right to condense
all letters of over 300 words and to accept or reject
letters upon the criteria of general editorial importance
and interest to the campus.
To the Editor:
I wish to add my voice to that of "Thoroughly
Disgusted" and the multitude of other students in
righteous indignation at Michigan's self-appointed
Walter Winchell and his thoroughly objectionable
little smut sheet.
Not only is "What's Doing" cheap and vulgar,
it is not even well written. This so-called Count
is further to be criticized for his particular form
of racketeering, that is: collecting and purveying
trivial gossip about campus notables, thereby lur-
ing gossip-starved readers to scan the ads of local
merchants while reading his morsels, which fact
enables him to sell advertising space and reap
tremendous profits for himself. The Count is not
even a Michigan student and has not been for
at least a year, if he ever was.
Never be afraid to attack wrong, whether by
predatory plutocracy or predatory poverty. - Jo-
Roots Of The 'Grass Roots'
By JULIAN S. MASON
This article, which appeared in Today, is
hereby reprinted in part.
NEW POLITICAL phrase has been born in
America - "grass roots." Men speak of the
"grass roots" conference at Springfield, Ill. And
men are asking: "Where does the label come from?
What is its history? What does it mean?"
"Grass roots have been familiar words in the
prairie states ever since their beginnings," said
William Allen White of Kansas, when I asked him. .
That is true. In my earliest days in Illinois, I
remember the phrase as what Broadway would
call a "natural." From that prairie origin, it has
had a natural progress in political usage. Through
three stages it has passed.
Three men have marked the peaks of its eras.
Its past hangs upon "Sockless" Jerry Simpson,
its middle period upon the late Senator Albert J.
Beveridge and its avid present upon John D. M.
Hamilton, now counselor of the Republican Na-
Jerry Simpson was a Congressman from Kansas
in the '80s and '90s. When he first ran, he boasted
that real Kansans refused to wear fancy clothing.
Victor Murdock of the Wichita Eagle promptly
christianed him "Sockless," and as "Sockless"
Simpson he became known to the entire nation.
He accepted ,the title with humorous avidity.
He loved and dealt hin homely phrases. "Grass
roots" was frequently upon his lips. He made
it politically current in a Kansas of "Whiskers"
Peffer of the Ponulists. of Gen. Weaver and Mary
ering of the Progressive party which nominated
Theodore Roosevelt, Beveridge was the "keynoter."
On Monday, Aug. 5, 1912, he addressed a thousand
delegates in the Coliseum at Chicago on the stir-
ring subject, "Pass Prosperity Around!" He spoke
for an hour and a quarter. He never looked at his
manuscript, yet he never once deviated from it.
I remember well his use of "grass roots." The
pamphlet form of his address, afterward widely
distributed, records the sentence in which he de-
clared his allegiance to this new Progressive party,
a party "the people themselves" had founded.
"For this party," he went on in measured tones,
"comes from the grass roots. It has grown from
the people's hard necessities. It has the vitality of
the people's strong convictions."
"Up .from the grass roots" became one of the
war cries of that militant campaign. From Bull
Moose headquarters in Chicago we circulated it,
in speeches and on posters, out through the Middle
William Allen White thinks that this campaign-
ing of the phrase may have had its subconscious
effect upon the young red-headed Hamilton, who
has given it new life today. But White is inclined
to believe that the throwback goes down to the
original talk of the prairies.
At any rate, current newspaper editorials and
"letters to the editor" have recalled instances
in the more recent past where it was used by
Harding, by Jim Reed and even Coolidge.
Counselor Hamilton certainly needed some label
to describe the conference lately held at Spring-
fied. "Mid-Western Renhliean" cnnferenenw a
r1 1 er ,