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Constitutional Money Advocate VOL. I No. 6 May 1, 1940 Bryan's "Cross of Gold" Speech E x c e rp ts F ro m W illia m J e n n in g s B r y a n 's F a m o u s S p e e c h C o n c lu d in g D e b a te o n th e C h ic a g o P l a t f o r m ''Mr. Chairman and Gentlemen of the Convention: I would be presumptuous, indeed, to present myself against the distinguished gentlemen to whom you have listened if this were a mere measuring of abilities; but this is not a contest between persons. The humblest citizen in all the land, when clad in the armor of a righteous cause, is stronger than all the hosts of error. I come to speak to you in defense of a cause as holy as the cause of liberty—the cause of humanity. . . ." "When you (turning to the gold delegates) come before us and tell us that we are about to disturb your business interests, we reply that you have dis turbed our business interests by your course. ''We say to you that you have made the definition of a business man too limited in its application. The man who is employed for wages is as much a business man as his employer; the attorney in a country town is as much a business man as the corporation counsel in a great metropolis; the mer chant at the cross-roads store is as much a business man as the merchant of New York; the farmer who goes forth in the morning and toils all day—who begins in the spring and toils all summer—and who by the application of brain and muscle to the natural resources of the country creates wealth, is as much a business man as the man who goes upon the board of trade and bets upon the price of grain; the miners who go down a thousand feet into the earth, or climb two thousand feet upon the cliffs, and bring forth from their hiding places the precious metals to be poured into the channels of trade are as much business men as the few financial magnates who, in a back room, corner the money of the world. We come to speak for this broader class of business men. ''Ah, my friends, we say not one word against those who live upon the Atlantic coast; but the hardy pioneers who have braved all the dangers of the wilderness, who have made the desert to blossom as the rose—the pioneers away out there (pointing to the West), who rear their children near to Nature's heart, where they can mingle their voices with the voices of the birds—out there where they have erected schoolhouses for the education of their young, churches where they praise their Creator, and cemeteries where rest the ashes of their dead— these people, we say, are as deserving of the con sideration of our party as any people in this country. It is for these that we speak. We do not come as aggressors. Our war is not a war of conquest; we are fighting in the defense of our homes, our families, and posterity. We have petitioned, and our petitions have been scorned; we have entreated, and our en treaties have been disregarded; we have begged, and they have mocked when our calamity came. We beg no longer; we entreat no more; we petition no more. We defy them. "The gentleman from Wisconsin has said that he fears a Robespierre. My friends, in this land of the free you need not fear that a tyrant will spring up from among the people. What we need is an Andrew Jackson to stand, as Jackson stood, against the encroachment of organized wealth. "They tell us that this platform was made to catch votes. We reply to them that changing conditions make new issues; that the principles upon which Democracy rests are as everlasting as the hills, but that they must be applied to new conditions as they arise. Conditions have arisen, and we are here to meet those conditions. They tell us that the income tax ought not to be brought in here; that it is a new idea. They criticize us for our criticism of the Su preme Court of the United States. My friends, we have not criticized; we have simply called attention to what you already know. If you want criticisms, read the dissenting opinions of the Court. There you will find criticisms. They say that we passed an unconstitutional law; we deny it. The income tax law was not unconstitutional when it was passed; it was not unconstitutional when it went before the Supreme Court for the first time; it did not become unconstitutional until one of the judges changed his mind, and we cannot be expected to know when a judge will change his mind. The income tax is just. It simply intends to put the burdens of government justly upon the backs of the people. I am in favor of an income tax. When I find a man who is not willing to bear his share of the burdens of the gov ernment which protects him, I find a man who is unworthy to enjoy the blessings of a government like ours. "They say that we are opposing national bank cur rency; it is true. If you will read what Thomas Ben ton said, you will find he said that, in searching history, he could find but one parallel to Andrew Jackson; that was Cicero, who destroyed the con spiracy of Cataline and saved Rome. Benton said that Cicero only did for Rome what Jackson did for us when he destroyed the bank conspiracy and saved America. We say in our platform that we believe the right to coin and issue money is a func tion of government. We believe it. We believe that it is a part of sovereignty, and can no more with safety be delegated to private individuals than we could afford to delegate to private individuals the power to make penal statutes or levy taxes. (Continued on Page 6) CONSTITUTIONAL MONEY ADVOCATE 6 C o n s iiiu iio n a l M oney A d v o c a te A Monthly Publication Charles G. Binderup__ ______________ .Editor Published at Minden, Nebraska By The Constitutional Money League of America Washington, D. C. A non-partisan, non-profit organization Printed and distributed from the Central Office at Minden, Nebraska Entered as Second-class matter November 10, 1939 at the postoffice at Minden, Nebraska, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Subscription R ate___ ___ ____________ 50 cents per year Published for the purpose of disseminating monetary facts. Truth is the basis of all knowledge, and science and education are the foundation of Democracy.___________ B r y a n 's " C r o s s of G o ld " S p e e c h (Continued from Page 5) Mr. Jefferson, who was once regarded as good Demo cratic authority, seems to have differed in opinion from the gentleman who has addressed us on the part of the minority. Those who are opposed to this proposition tell us that the issue of paper money is a function of the bank, and that the Government ought to go out of the banking business. I stand with Jefferson rather than with them, and tell them, as he did, that the issue of money is a function of government, and that the banks ought to go out of the governing business. . . ." "The gentleman from New York says he will pro pose an amendment which will provide for the suspension of free coinage if we fail to maintain the parity within a year. We reply that when we ad vocate a policy which we believe will be successful, we are not compelled to raise a doubt as to our own sincerity by suggesting what we shall do if we fail. I ask him, if he would apply his logic to us, why he does not apply it to himself. He says he wants this country to try to secure an international agree ment. Why does he not tell us what he is going to do if he fails to secure an international agreement? There is more reason for him to do that than there is for us to provide against the failure to maintain the parity. Our opponents have tried for twenty years to secure an international agreement, and those are waiting for it most patiently who do not want it at all. "And now, my friends, let me come to the para mount issue. If they ask us why it is that we say more on the money question than we say upon the tariff question, I reply that, if protection has slain its thousands, the gold standard has slain its tens of thousands. If they ask us why we do not embody in our platform all the things that we believe in, we reply that when we have restored the money of the Constitution all other necessary reforms will be possible; but that until this is done there is no other reform that can be accomplished. . . "No private character, however pure, no personal popularity, however great, can protect from the avenging wrath of an indignant people a man who will declare that he is in favor of fastening the gold standard upon this country, or who is willing to sur render the right of self-government and place the legislative control of our affairs in the hands of foreign potentates and powers. . . "You come to us and tell us that the great cities are in favor of the gold standard; we reply that the great cities rest upon our broad and fertile prairies. Burn down your cities and leave our farms, and your cities will spring up again as if by magic; but destroy our farms and the grass will grow in the streets of every city in the country. "My friends, we declare that this nation is able to legislate for its own people on every question, without waiting for the aid or consent of any other nation on earth; and upon that issue we expect to carry every State in the Union. I shall not slander the inhabitants of the fair State of Massachusetts nor the inhabitants of the State of New York by saying that, when they are confronted with the proposition, they will declare that this nation is not able to attend to its own business. It is the issue of 1776 over again. Our ancestors, when but three millions in number, had the courage to declare their political independence of every other nation; shall we, their descendants, when we have grown to seventy millions, declare that we are less inde pendent than our forefathers? No, my friends, that will never be the verdict of our people. . . ." "Having behind us the producing masses of this nation and the world, supported by the commercial interests, the laboring interests, and the toilers every where, we will answer their demand for a gold standard by saying to them: You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns, you shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold." —Taken from Bryan's "The First Battle." W. J. Bryan Said: "The Federal Reserve Bank that should have been the farmer's greatest protection has be come his greatest foe. The deflation of the farmer was a crime deliberately committed, not out of enmity to the farmer but out of indif ference to him. Inflation of prices had en couraged him to buy, and then deflation deliv ered him into the hands of the money-lender. The Federal Bank can be a blessing or a curse according to its management. If the Wall Street speculators are in control of it, they can drain the agricultural districts and keep up a fictitious prosperity among the members of the Plunderbund. "While the Federal Reserve Bank Law is the greatest economic reform achieved in the last half-century, if not in our National history, it would be better to repeal it, go back to old conditions and take our chances with individual financiers, than to turn the Federal Reserve Bank over to Wall Street and allow its tremendous power to be used for the carrying out of the plans of the Money Trust."