Baltimore Evening Sun (17 November 1913): 6.


The Hon. William H. Anderson, in the course of a five-page defense and explanation in the current American Issue:

We admit frankly the possibility of defeat of the local option bill.

Thanks, old top, for them kind words. We of the “liquor-vice ring” were beginning to fear that the Sunpaper had been spoofing us, that the returns had been doctored, that the landslide was merely an optical delusion. It is comforting to know that even the Hon. Mr. Anderson is now disposed to admit that malignant morality got a wallop on that fatal day. Incidently, he also admits that the Legislature will probably take a look at the secret records of the Anti-Saloon League and the bogus Civil Liberty League. Again he is right, but he is wrong when he says that the lawmakers will hunt for evidences of a violation of the corrupt practices act. Not so. What they will hunt for is a full list of the brave devils who fight from behind the Hon. Mr. Anderson, and particularly those who conceal their names “for business reasons.” These are the gay rodents who will be smoked out.

The hon. gent’s explanation of the defeat of local option is not only very lengthy, but also extremely ingenious. He heads it “Caught in a Landslide” and he puts most of the blame upon the Hon. Woodrow Wilson, Ph. D., and the Hon. William Jennings Bryan. If these eminent gladiators, he says, had not come out for the Hon. Blair Lee, Blair would have been thrown to the lions by the “moral element.” As it was, many “dry” Democrats voted for him out of respect for the President, while “still with the League on State issues.” For example, in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. For example, in Harford. For example, in the Hon. Lloyd Wilkinson’s district. Certainly the Hon. Mr. Anderson is a fellow of infinite jest!

He is equally interesting when he discusses the future. During the campaign, it will be recalled, he threatened to switch to State prohibition by constitutional amendment in case local option was defeated. Well, he is now ready to make good that threat. That is to say, he is going to get one of his Eastern Shore tame rabbits to introduce the said amendment at the coming session. But how is he going to get the three-fifths vote necessary to pass it when he can’t get the simple majority needed to pass the local option bill? Ask of the winds that far around with fragments strew the sea! Nothing is impossible to one wose head is already half way through the floor of Heaven.

In the course if his present explanation, indeed, the hon. gent. formally renews and reiterates his claim to divine inspiration. On page 7, for example, he speaks specifically of “the League’s Omnipotent Backer” and then proceeds to explain that he means “a God who is all powerful.” It must be very comforting to have such backing in the hour of disaster. But I doubt that the Hon. Young Cochran will view the acknowledgment with equanimity. The Hon. Mr. Cochran put up a good deal of the money used in the late unpleasantness, and I hope he is still human enough to want at least some of the glory. A few years more, and this Hon. Mr. Cochran will be wholly sublimated, but as it is, one of his legs is yet upon the earth.

Strapped to his hospital bed, a chunk of ice on his head, the Hon. Mr. Anderson is full of pious rumble-bumble. “The liquor traffic cannot win permanently,” he says, “for God has ordained that no evil thing shall last.” Obviously, another new revelation. The millenium is at hand. But do not laugh! Such ludicrous piffle, true enough, may make the judicious shake with sobs, but it is coke and cocktails to the “forward-looking,” the “right-thinking,” the “moral element.” It goes in the Sunday-schools, it pleases the old deacons, it stirs up the moving-picture preachers. They are habituated to balderdash, and even like it. So would you, dear heart, if you heard so much of it. A man can get used to anything.

Meanwhile, the cry that the Hon. Mr. Anderson lost the election by tactical blunders is dying out, and it is seen plainly that the rebuke was to the cause more than to the man. The hon. gent. still remains the cleverest moral gladiator ever seen in these parts, and it is a safe bet that he will wriggle superbly when the Hon. Lloyd Wilkinson, the Hon. Cy Cummings and the rest of the humorists begin performing their autopsy upon him at Annapolis. These fair gentlemen, indeed, had better tie him down with thick ropes. If they neglect to do so, the chances are that he will slip from the table and ham-string them with their own scimitars. Beware of Anderson, gents! He is half curve-grease and half dynamite!

A DAILY THOUGHT. All truth is safe, and nothing else is safe.--Max Müller.

At 9.15 P. M. of November 9 the Hotel Tierney, at Howard and Franklin streets, was raided by a “moral squad” of cops, and several of the guests were dragged to a police station. The Hon. Frank Tierney, proprietor of the hotel, was charged with keeping a disorderly house. A triumph of the uplift, of armed snoutery! But now, so my spies say, the grand jury has dismissed the case! Alas, the impediments to the uplift, the cayenne spread for snouters!

First the Sunpaper deluges Dr. Goldsborough with goose-grease for appointing the Hon. Morris A. Soper to the Supreme Bench, and now The Evening Sun pours oily praises upon the late Penal Commission! What next, ye gods, what next! I hereby nominate the Rev. Dr. Kenneth G. Marray for the cocoa-butter and the Maryland Anti-Vivisection Society for the lard. And isn’t there a drop of oleomargarine to spare for the Hon. Isaac L. Straus?

Be patient, gents! We are not forgetting you! As soon as the committee to investigate the Anti-Saloon League is appointed the war upon near-beer and the speakeasy will begin! By Marrh 1, 1914, authentic Pilsner will be on tap in every “dry” town in Maryland! Do not despair! Succor is at hand!

Stop boiling your drinking water! Cease waiting for Bob to come back!

Among the vice-presidents of the coming anti-vivisectionist carnival and chautauqua at Washington are Mrs. Ella Wheeler Wilcox and the Hon. Isaac Lobe Straus! Having slaughtered the Sunpaper and swallowed local option, Isaac probably found the next step easy.

If you see it in the Sunpaper, the Sunpaper thinks it ought to be so.