The Democrats could do this if they had the men,—but look over the nation and see how short we are of talent of any kind. It may be an opposition party but it has no force, no will, no self-confidence. It hopes for a miracle, vainly hopes. It cannot gather twenty first-rate minds in the nation to make a program for the party. I tried it the other day—men interested in political affairs, outside Congress—try it yourself. Get twenty big enough to draft a national program of legislation for the party. I sent the suggestion to George White, chairman of the National Committee, and gave him a list, and at the head I put you and President Eliot, classing you both as Democrats, which probably neither of you call yourselves now, tho’ both voted for Cox. ...
If I get to California I must see you. But I shall play my string out here before trying the Western land. My best regards to the Lady. Yours always, Lane
To Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt
Bethel, Maine, [November, 1920]
To the dear Roosevelts,—... You realized what was coming, but I fear Cox did not; could not believe that his star would not pull through. I wish Georgia and Alabama had gone, too. The American born did not like Wilson because he was not frank, was too selfish and opinionated. The foreign born did not like his foreign settlements. So they voted “no confidence” in his party. What we will do in this land of mixed peoples is a problem. Our policies now are to be determined by Fiume and Ireland—not by real home concerns. This is dangerous in the extreme. Demagogues can win to power by playing to the prejudices of those not yet fully American. ... As always,
F. K. L.
Bethel, [November] 20, 
My dear Lathrop,—You are wrong, dead wrong, viciously, wilfully wrong. I do like this exact science business. I worked at it and in it on the railroad problems for seven years. There is only one thing that beats it, puts it on the blink, and that is inexact human nature which does wicked things to figures and facts and theories and plans and hopes. Prove, if you will, that there is no margin at all over wages, and a nominal return on capital, and you do not kill the desire of someone to run the shop. ... Talking of business men, what about the Shipping Board? O, my boy, they have something to explain—these Hurleys and Schwabs! ... How does this sound to you? They let their own tanks lie idle, commandeered those of Doheny and rented them to the Standard Oil—so that they could bid when Doheny couldn’t—eh, what? ...
F. K. L.
To Timothy Spellacy
Bethel, [November] 22,