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The Record and guide: v. 40, no. 1031: December 17, 1887

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becemiber 17, ISSt The Record and Guide. 16?3 THE RECORD AND GUIDE, Published every Saturday. 191 Broadvfay, IST. ^y. Our Telephone Call Is • - - • JOHN 370. TERMS: OKE ¥EiR^ in advance, SIX DOLLARS. Conununicatious should be addressed to C. W. SWEET, 191 Broadway. J. T. LINDSEY, Business Manager. Vol. XL. DECEMBER 17, 1887. No. 1,031 The Real Estate Exchange is rather dull just at present as the auction sales are very few, but there is a good deal of trading, and the feeling is hopeful as to the future. Next year promises to be an active one in real property, especially in NewYork and vicinity. It looks as if there will be a great deal of speculative dealing in the 23d and 24th Wards. The underground road connecting with the 42d street depot will bring the other side of the Harlem nearer by twenty minutes' time than it is to-day. Then the Harlem Canal, with its promised ten miles of wharfage, will make valuable a large section of country in the 23d and 34th "Wards. Mayor Hewitt is quite right in saying the Board of Aldermen should be abolished. It is doubtful if there has been a Board of Aldermen for the last fifty years the majority of whom were hon¬ est. For years we have been contending that more authority should be lodged in executive officers and less in city or State legislatures. We want power and responsibility to be exercised by officials in full view of the public, such] as Governors, Mayors or heads of important State or city departments. When Brooklyn is joined to New York, as it should be some day, we can afford to have a Board of Aldermen elected on a general ticket, but with restricted powers ; but the single district cannot be depended upon to give us capable or honest legislative bodies. Associated wealth in the form of corporations, trusts and syndi¬ cates is making itself feltj not only in all departments of our home industries, but in the internationaljtrade of the world. We have heard of the Standard Oil Company, of gas, sugar, India rubber, cotton seed oil, cattle, dressed beef and oiher trusts which seek to monopolize certain raw materials or manufactured products which are a prime commercial necessity, and now comes to the fore a new development—this time lu our international trade-^of syndicates which are making corners in the metals. There has been a giant speculation in tin, copper and lead, and more recently m quick¬ silver. These speculative combinations virtually affect the whole earth. If they succeed in their present undertakings we will hear of them in cotton, grain, provisions and other articles essential to mankind. The Trust in our own country is not subject to law as yet, but even if we succeed in time in putting them under legal regulations, how about these international syndicates? They can¬ not be touched until a congress of nations is held and regulations adopted putting these syndicates under some international control. Practically the wealth of the world is being concentrated in a few hands, while its control is vested in a snaall group of men of bound¬ less enterprise and great ability. Is there not some relation be¬ tween these few men who aspire to practicaUy control the wealth of the entire world and the Anarchist who aims to destroy all wealth ? ^------#-----—.^ It is semi-officially announced from Washington that the Admin¬ istration will not favor any disposition Of the surplus in the Treasury until Congress acts first upon the question of the reduction of the revenues. It will not favor any purchasing of bonds, or their refunding at a lower rate of interest, by paying out cash as a bonus for making the change. There is now about $50,000,000 loaned to the banks, free of interest, upon the deposit of government bonds. The Secretary of the Treasury hopes to lend out seventy, if not a hundred miUion, before the close of the spring season. On the first of January the Department will be able to anticipate the interest on the entire bonded debt of the nation^ This semi-official announcement goes on to say that, if not interfered with, the Administration can make things pleasant until the end of the fiscal year, June 1, 1888. —,------«--------- Uf course this simply means that the Administration proposes to try and coerce Congress into a reduction of the tariff by keeping the surplus in the Treasury as a menace to general business. Its action will be very satisfactory to the bondholders, whose secu¬ rities will be in greater demand than ever; nor will the banks object, as it gives them the practical control of the surplus to loan out to their customers, at market rates, money on which they pay no interest. The banks can WeU afford to influence their news¬ paper organs to shout for revenue reform, while they retain a monopoly of the use of the government funds for nothing. Then, for the time being, people who need bank accommodations will be satisfied if money is kept easy by this use of the surplus. But will the country be satisfied with this policy ? What have the money-lenders done for the country that they should receive this tremendous bonus? Of course they will influence the press to decry subsidies for steamship lines, harbor fortifications, or needed public improvements. It is all right to give the people's money into the hands of the bank managers to make a profit out of, but it is all wrong to spend it in such a way as to extend our commerce, improve our waterways, or insure the safety of our seacoast cities. Queer logic this, but one sees it in the newspapers every day. Congress will in some way try and make money easy. The Administration will, for a while at least, keep on lending the public money through the national banks. It will anticipate the interest of the public debt, and will in every way increase the coinage most needed in the retail trade of the country. Senator Beck has a bil* before the Senate to get rid of greenbacks aud national bank notes of larger denominations than one hundred dollars. The biUs so retired to be reissued in notes of silver and gold certificates of twenty dollars and under. He also wishes to withdraw the ten dollar bank notes so as to furnish a still larger field for the silver certificates. This and other measures that are on foot promises to give us an excessive supply of one, two and five dollar certificates, as well as of metallic minor coinage. This will stimulate the retail trade and will raise prices. It will be aU very well for a while, but when the reaction comes there will be a crash. Mayor Hewitt is quite right in insisting that the city shall not agree to pay money for costly improvements which in the end wUI mainly benefit private corporations. If Elm street is widened from Oth street to the City Hall, and then extended to the lower part of the island, it should be with a distinct understanding having the force of positive law that the surface shall not be used for horse-cars or cable companies. Riverside Drive, Morningside avenue, West Eud avenue and Sth avenue should also be forever kept sacred from the horse-cars. But we want rapid transit. A tunnel under Elm street, connecting the Brooklyn Bridge with the 42d street depot, would be a useful public improvement; that is, if we cannot get the Arcade road under Broadway. The right kind of an elevated road over Elm street also would not be objec¬ tionable. Then the franchise for these improvements should be sold by the city, not to the higheot bidder for a gross sum of money, but to whoever would perform the service for the lowest fare, after guaranteeing every passenger a comfortable seat. The return to the city treasury is a minor matter compared with an efficient service with the cheapest possible rates to the public. The suggestion that a tunnel should be constructed running from Duane street to the new street that is to be opened between Nassau and William is a very good idea. The plaza on the New York side of the bridge is now over-crowded and woul^ become practicaUy impassable if another line of travel were turned in upon it from the north and south. The underground passage should be on the Arcade plan. By all means let us have this avenue opened from the lower part of the city to the 42d street depot. Then the widened Elm street should connect with Lexington avenue, which should also be widened from 14th street to the Harlem River, bub no horse or cable cars should be tolerated, as they would interfere with the vehicles which now need unobstructed passageways to the upper and lower ends of the Island. -----.---------o-------------- The Interstate Commerce law should be amended so ao to permit pooling arrangements between the railroad corporationst subject to the consent of the commissioners. The railroads are uow at the mercy of some of the great Trusts which can deprive them of cer* tain lines of business unless they openly or secretly accept ratea which barely pay. The dressed meat business of Chicago, for instance, is controlled by four concerns. They recently transferred their whole business over the Canadian lines so as to bring their American trunk lines to terms. The public have complained, and justly, at the favors shown to the Standard Oil Company, but that all embracing monopoly in dealing with raUroads had a giant's strength and used it like a giant. Its business was so enormous that in bargaining with competing roads it could make its own terms. Congress ought to make stringent regulations affecting these great Trusts and monopolies. They should not be permitted to deprive a road of business when the rates and service were the same as other roads. There is no objection to pooling, provided rates and fares are reasonable, and this fact ought to be recognized in the Interstate Commerce laws. Mayor Opdyke in one of his messages suggested a sort of city Senate, which he thought might work well. It should be com¬ posed, he said, of representabives of the great Exchanges, the