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The Record and guide: v. 38, no. 977: December 4, 1886

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December 4,1886 The Record and Guide, 1477 THE RECORD AND GUIDE, Published every Saturday. 191 SrOad^WaV, IST. 'X'- Onr Telephone Call is .....JOHN 370. TERMS: ONE ¥EAR, in advance, SIX DOLLARS. Communications shotild be addressed to C. W, SWEET, 191 Broadway. J. T. LINDSEY, Business Manager. Vol. XXXVIII. DECEMBER 4. 1886. No. 977. Speculation is raging on several of the exchanges of the country. The petroleum market is exciting, and literally millions of barrels are bought and sold every hour. The volume of transactions on the Stock Exchange is the largest known to the " street." There are now two exchanges which deal in railway securities, and between them it is probable that over a million shares were daily dealt in last week. In periods of excitement the total number of shares is understated. Then there is another mining " boom" under way. Consolidated Virginia in the Comstock Lode has advanced within a couple of months from less than a dollar a share up to fifty dollars a share, and there is the wildest kind of purchases of mining secur¬ ities without respect to merit. These are unwholesome symptoms. No doubt but what the country is prosperous. This is shown by the demand for the metals and for manufactured goods; by the increase in the domestic exchanges and the splendid business which is being done by the great railway systems. But these indications of better times does not justify this ex¬ cited speculation in the stock market. Then the mining fever is a peculiarly bad symptom. If one of the Grangers, Coalers or the Vanderbilts should advance in value upon merit, it would be an argument in favor of buying others of the same group of stocks. F©r what would benefit one would benefit all. But it is prepos¬ terous to purchase mining shares in California, Montana or Vir¬ ginia because a new bonanza had been found in the Comstock Lode, in Nevada. Yet, here are people buying mining shares of all kinds because of a presumably favorable development in one mine. There will be a crash some day. Our advice to ail who are interested in the markets would be to realize and have money on hand to purchase good securities when the evil hour comes. But in no case should sensible people have anything to do with mining stocks. There is one class of investment, however, about which people with money can make no mistake, and that is real estate in and near New York city. The returns may not be as quick as in Wall street, but they are far surer. Any good, cheap property bought to-day near the lines of improvement is certain to enhance in value before the close of next spring. There has rarely been such a chance for making money in real estate as at the present time. A crash in other markets only helps real estate, for investors who are bitten in speculative ventures turn naturally to real estate when they have met disappointments. Before the next number of The Record and Guide is issued, the message of President Cleveland and the report of the Secretary of the Treasury will have been read and digested by the American people. Nothing very startling is to be expected in either docu¬ ment. But it is sincerely to be hoped that the administration will put itself in accord with the country as well as the great bulk of the Democratic party on the silver question. The United States, situated between gold monometallic Europe and silver mono, metallic .a.sia, with silver-producing and silver-using countries in the South, should favor both the precious metals equally. We are the greatest producers of gold and silver of any nation on earth ; indeed, as much as all other nations combined. But, as we produce more of the white than the yellow metal, we ought to give it, at least, an equal show. Unless he is one of the most obstinate men that ever sat in the White House, Mr. Cleveland must see that the great revival in business is due in great part to our use of silver, and hence that he was entirely mistaken in the letters and mes¬ sages he wrote after his election to the Presidency. If he wants to make himself *' solid" with the country and his party, let him sug^ gest measures that will lead to the rehabilitation of silver as a money metal among all the commercial nations. a very few—swift war vessels. We have plenty of money in the Treasury; indeed, the Democratic Congressmen profess to be very much perplexed as to what to do with the surplus. There need be no embarrassment. Let us spend it in gun factories, seacoast defences, ships of war, and internal and harbor improvements, such as the deepening of the channel in our lower bay. There will be no time to tinker with the tariff this session, but the bill prepared by Mr. Hewitt to reform the proce¬ dures in our Custom House ought to be taken up and promptly passed. Then a bill extending the free list to encourage manufac¬ turing could be so framed that free-traders and protectionists alike would vote for it. On civil service reform, despite the clamor of disappointed politicians, the President cannot afford to take any step backward. The business of the country must be conducted on business principles. Admiral Porter confesses we need seacoast defenses far more than ships of war. He asks, however, Congress to authorize the construction of a number of swift, armored vessels as commerce destroyers. A few such are doubtless needed along our coast in case of war, but we cannot send war vessels into distant seas, as we are without naval stations in any part of the world. Great Britain has coaling and refitting stations all over the world. But it would be useless for our war ships to make captures, as they could not make prizes of the merchant ships of the nation with whom we might be at war. We want fortifications, floating bat¬ teries, and a few great war ships, to help beat back an attacking fleet. If we want commerce destroyers, why not encourage the building of twenty or thirty swift and strong merchant steamships, which, in the event of war, could be altered into government ves¬ sels and armed wiih a few guns, which would make them master of any ordinary merchant ship on the high seas. Such vessels would carry our flag into every sea in peace as well as war, and would allow American merchants to make some of the profits out of the immense foreign commerce of this country. Then the President ought also to urge Congress to provide ample funds for fortifying our exposed seacoasts. We want great guns and plenty .of tbem. , plotting batteries are required, and ft few— The late Republican Candidate for Mayor. Although defeated in the late contest for Mayor, Theodore Roosevelt, nevertheless, promises to be a foremost figure among the political leaders of the near future. Indeed, it is not improbable that he consented to run for Mayor and thus lead a forlorn hope with the understanding that he was to be the standard bearer of his party in the next State canvass. The views held by a man*of so much mark and prominence are of interest to the public. He has been talking with a reporter in London, and his utterances are noteworthy. He does not think that the workingmen will be able to organize a new party; but, he says, " a new element has been introduced into our politics to be bid for by the old parties." He scouts the idea that the George vote in this city represents the strength of Socialism. That was only one of many factions represented in that demonstration. Socialism, as he understands it, is, he claims, un-American. Individualism and self-help are the very basis of our New World civilization. But, curiously enough, Mr. Roosevelt himself advocates State Socialism when he proposes that the tenement house system should be supervised and improved by State inter¬ ference. He thinks the workingmen have jnst cause of complaint, in that they are forced to live in unwholesome and foul abodes. If we understand him aright, he would charge the Board of Health with larger powers, so that nuisances would be abated and the homes of the poor be under the care of State officers. Bat Mr. Roosevelt, like many others, does not define what he means by Socialism. Most people confound it with spoliation by law and with Anarchism. But, really, it is as wide apart as the poles from the latter. The Anarchists are simply Jeffersonian Democrats run mad. They wish to get rid of all government, whereas the Social Democrats, as they are called in Europe, clamor for a great deal of government, only they demand that the powers of the Sfcate should be used for the good of the greater number and not to enrich the favored few. In this point of view public schools are Socialistic. Property has to pay for the education of all the children of the community. The rich are forced to contribute to the education of the children of their poorer neighbors. Our com¬ mon roads, our public parks, our post-office department—all these are Socialistic in the sense of those who advocate enlarged powers for the government to advantage the common weal. This school advocates State control and ownership of the telegraph and rail¬ way system. The United States is the only government where a private company is allowed to make profits from the telegraphic service, and on the continent of Europe State ownership is the rule and private ownership the exception. The advanced thinkers among the Socialists want the State to own the mines, even Henry George, although a free-trade-no-government Democrat, insists that the government should be the sole owner of the soil. In writing and talking about Socialism it would be well for jour¬ nalists and orators to keep these facts in mind. In a certain sense the Socialiets can claim relationship with the conservative parties