We can not countenance any one who has been in jail. To have been in jail proves poverty. Nor do we regard it as fitting that a young woman should have been torpedoed and spent forty-five minutes in the water splashing around like Mrs. Lecks or Mrs. Aleshine. If she was torpedoed why didn’t she go down or up like a heroine? Then she would have had an atrocious iron statue erected in her honor among the other horrors in Central Park. After her experience she will doubtless be more sympathetic toward those of us who are torpedoed daily and weekly and monthly and have to splash around for the amusement of a curious public.
I hope your dinner of welcome and rejoicing will be as gay as the cherubic smile of the Right Honorable Egan. Cordially,
FRANKLIN K. LANE
TO FRANCIS R. WALL
Washington, November 27, 1915
My dear wall,—I wish that I had time for a long letter to you, such as yours to me. But I am only to-day able to get at my personal correspondence which has accumulated in the last six weeks. These have been times of annual reports and estimates, and we have a large number of internal troubles which need constant attention.
I am afraid that we are going to have a great deal of trouble in getting our preparedness program through, because of dissension in our own ranks and because the Republicans are so anxious to take advantage of this emergency to raise the tariff duties and to gain credit for whatever is done in the way of preparation. We are too much dominated by partisanship to be really patriotic. This is a very broad indictment, but it seems to be justified. Of course, the people like Bryan and Ford, and the women generally, are moved by a philosophy that is too idealistic, and some of them are only moved, I fear, by an intense exaggerated ego. If I would have to name the one curse of the present day, I would say it is the love of notoriety and the assumption by almost everyone that his judgment is as good as that of the ablest. Of course, the trouble with the ablest people is that they are so largely moved by forces that do not appear on the surface, that one does not know that the views they express are really their own judgment. Democracy seems to be government by suspicion, in large part. We have faith in ourselves, but not in each other. A man to be a good partisan seems called upon to believe that every man of different view is a crook or a weakling. This is the Roosevelt idea. And half of it is the Bryan idea.
I wish that I could see you, old man, and have one of our old time talks. ...
I shall bear in mind what you say as to the availability of your service, but I hope it may not be necessary to take you from that land of sunshine and dreams that seems so remote from this center of intrigue and trouble. Affectionately yours,