1917 ALS with Bitter Condemnation of Pennsylvania Notables including Scott Nearing, Radical Economist, Pacifist and Socialist.
“The mills of God will chew up this unholy alliance of graft and respectability and all will suffer”
Naming names. From a hotel in California, “Harrison” writes to his friend “Bertram” complaining about a crowd of Pennsylvania lawyers and influential men.
Mentioned here are radical economist, pacifist, and socialist Scott Nearing (1883–1983), late of the University of Pennsylvania; Senator Boise Penrose (1860–1921); Congressman William Scott Vare (1867–1934); former Pennsylvania attorney general, John C. Bell (1861–1935); Philadelphia judge, Norris S. Barratt (1862–1924); the Pennsylvania Rail Road; and Philadelphia’s Union League club.
Yours [your letter] about Nearing, with that clipping in which he “turns the other cheek” is here. I don’t hold the brief for all Nearing’s theories, but I think hia a damn sight nearer the heart of the Xtian Christian principles than John Bell or Randall Morgan or Ephraim Morris. They all attend the Episcopal anodyne for rascality. Tis no doubt, but they are just about as near being Christians as a painted savage. ...the grip of monopoly and of perverted law on innocent and powerless citizens; it includes the Penna. R.R. which makes possible [Senator] Penrose and McNichol and [Congressman] Vare and the [indistinct] Co. that debauches our civic life. I mean the heartless and selfish subserviency of the Union League, giving its cloak of respectability to theft, and to laws that protect the monopolist.
Harrison’s rant continues with mention of crime wearing “...the gown of a judge, as in [Norris S.] Barratt…” and concludes with a dire warning:
Look out! Unless there’s a change of heart and of face, the mills of God will chew up this unholy alliance of graft and respectability and all will suffer.
A curious letter, written with intensity and passion.
Description: 1917 ALS with Bitter Condemnation of Pennsylvania Notables including Scott Nearing, Radical Economist, Pacifist and Socialist.
Santa Barbara, California, March 28, 1917. pp. Autograph Letter Signed. 4to. Letterhead of Hotel Potter. Folds; very good.
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