Baltimore Evening Sun (15 October 1912): 6.


Bullets do not stop Theodore: they help him. He made a million votes last night. Enough to elect him? Maybe not. But don’t put any more money on Woodrow!

Meanwhile, the fact that the Hon. John Schrank is a lunatic sufficiently explains his opposition to a third term Certainly undoubtedly sane men also profess to be against it, but so far I have not heard them support their opposition with intelligible reasons. As a rule, they confine themselyes to vague talk of the dangers of a military despotism. But why should those dangers be greater during a third term than during a first or second term? The remedy of assassination will always remain.

It is not easy to make out a clear and convincing case against despotism. What are the reasons for believing that an intelligent despot would rule us worse than we are ruled today? If you can think of any, send them in and I’ll print them. On the other hand, there are many considerations in despotism’s favor. To take only one, isn’t it a fact that despots commonly devote a good deal of time and enthusiasm to the hanging of judges?

The unspeakable Democratic Telegram, pursuing fatuously its crusade against the use of the feudal title of “Hon.” by the Hon. Samuel Summers Field. LL. D., argues in its current issue that Mr. Field’s appointment as Attorney-General of the United States in the first and second cabinets of the Hon. William Jennings Bryan did not carry the right to the title with it, for the reason that the Hon. Mr. Field declined. To quote:

It is a maxim of equity that that should be considered as done which ought to have been done. Doubtless, Mr. Field should have been Attorney-General * * * in the two administrations of Mr. Bryan, and therefore equity might have regarded him as such. But titles are matters of strict law, and the law regards nothing as done which is not done.

A quibble worthy of a Baltimore lawyer. But a quibble, unluckily, of no avail to the Telegram. When it admits that, by the rules of equity, the Hon. Mr. Field is an authentic Hon. it grants my whole case. What has the offer of a political job to do with law? Isnit it, in point of fact, purely a matter of equity? Does the law provide that this or that man shall be appointed to this or that office? Of course it doesn’t. The title of the individual to specific preferment lies in equity, and in equity only. It is governed, from first to last, by the master rule of equity, the fundamental principle of equity--the rule or principle, to wit, that he who tickles, hoping to be tickled, must be tickled in his turn. Such is equity, that angelic science. Flout it, and the world becomes a madhouse.

Did the Hon. Mr. Field have an equitable right to the high post and dignity of Attorney-General of the United States? Assuredly. He whooped for the Hon. Mr. Bryan from a thousand stumps. He covered himself with Bryan buttons until he resembled an armadillo. He pleaded for the Hon. Mr. Bryan in the public prints. He carried Maryland for the Hon. Mr. Bryan by 100,000 votes, 132,000 of which were not counted. Naturally enough, he deserved high rewards and offices. The Telegram admits as much: “Mr. Field should have been Attorney-General.” Substitute was for should. To quote the Telegram again: “It is a maxim of equity that that should be considered as done which ought to have been done.” And there you have it. Quod erat demonstrandum. Let the Telegram recant, repent and try to lead a better life.

Some men are Honorables and some are merely honorary.--Adv.

Again, there are honorary Honorables, or Hon. Hons. For example, the Hon. Hon. Soph Goldsborough, kappelmeister and first clarinetist to the Archangel Harry.

The Health Department’s report for 1911, just out, shows that the death rate last year was as follows:

For the whole population..........................18.43
For the white population...........................16.21
For the colored population........................30.84

These figures are based upon an estimated population of 564,545 on July 1, 1911, apparently a very fair estimate. Between 1901 and 1910 the Health Department ran to excessive population estimates, and as a result the death rate was artificially reduced, to the delight of the boomers. But now it makes a handsome amende honorable by printing more accurate figures for the whole decade. Here is a table showing the death rates it formerly claimed and the rates it now formally admits:

Year Boom Rate True Rate
1902 19.53 19.74
1903 18.30 19.34
1904 19.26 20.43
1905 19.77 20.01
1906 18.46 19.93
1907 18.85 20.55
1908 18.21 18.99
1909 16.93 18.71
1910 17.41 19.22

It is a pleasure to call attention to this frank effort to correct what was a well-meant, if not entirely innocent error. The Health Department does so much good work, it has so many excellent and honest men on its staff, and it gets so little intelligent help from the stoneheads of the City Council that its every effort to abolish old abuses deserves public praise. The best policy for it to pursue is undoubtedly one of utter frankness. It will gain nothing, in the long run, by yielding to the suggestions of boomers, political yawpers and other such mountebanks. The people of Baltimore will like it most and get most benefit from its labors when they can put complete confidence in its impartiality, courage and scientific honesty.

The editor of the Baltimore Democrat, in response to my well-meant promise to wear a white rose and a plug hat at his funeral:

We wish to acknowledge the comment of the Hon. H. L. Mencken, of The Evening Sun. While we appreciate that [the Hon.] Mr. Mencken is an eminent journalist [Ha! the witch hazel motive! The Hot Towel’s Prize Song!], as a prophet he is a LEMON. . . . We prophesy that it will not be long before the Hon. Henry L. Mencken will be after us for a job.

First revile prophets--and then do some prophesying! But let it pass. All I hope is that my prophecy will not come true if the Democrat’s comes true first.

Somehow a body don’t hardly hear nothing about no Havre de Grace no more.

Why not pave the Fallsway with the bricks heaved at Dashing Harry by the neighborhood improvement associations?

Ferrocaput, n, one with a head of iron or of some iron-like substance; a numbskull, a mountebank; a City Councilman.

The more them ex-Sheriffs think it over the more they dig each other in the ribs.