Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on September 3, 1972 · Page 65
Get access to this page with a Free Trial
Click to view larger version
September 3, 1972

Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 65

Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, September 3, 1972
Page 65
Start Free Trial

Page 65 article text (OCR)

Presidents of Manifest Destiny By Patterson Patrick In political parlance, a presidential ticket on which the presidential nominee is the weaker member is s o m e t i m e s c a l l e d a "kangaroo ticket" because it is stronger in the hind legs, and a ticket that pairs men of dissimilar political p e r s u a s i o n is called a "schizophrenic ticket." The McKinley-Roosevelt ticket of 1900 had elements of both s c h i z o p h r e n i a a n d kangarooism in it. Following Roosevelt's nomination by acclamation as the vice presidential candidate at the Republican N a t i o n a l Convention in Philadelphia, national Party Chairman Mark Hanna had these political and personality differences uppermost in mind when he protested, "Don't any of you realize t h a t t h e r e ' s o n l y o n e heartbeat between this madman and the White House?" Fifteeen months later, shaken by the death of the man he had served so capably and devotedly, Mark Hanna exclaimed," "Now look, that damned cowboy is President of the United States." Theodore Roosevelt would have been the last man to deny that he was a cowboy because his three years as a ranchman in the Badlands of North Dakota had been part of a strenuous physical- culture regimen which tran- sormed a frail, astigmatic and asthma-tortured child into a man so robust that he interrupted his honeymoon briefly to make an ove'rnight climb of the 14,701-foot peak of the Swiss Matterhorn! The second born of w e a l t h y , a r i s t o c r a t i c parents, Phi Beta Kappa, Harvard Class of 1880, New York State assemblyman, U, S. C i v i l Service commissioner, president New York City police commission, asst. secretary of Navy, colonel of famed Rough Riders in Spanish- American War. governor of New York, Vice President Theodore Roosevelt had now become the fifth man to r e a c h t h e P r e s i d e n c y through the death of its incumbent. Taking the oath of office 13 h o u r s a f t e r President McKmley's death in Buffalo, P r e s i d e n t R o o s e v e l t p r o m i s e d t o c o n t i n u e McKmley's policies, asked all the Cabinet members to remain at their posts and tnen swung swiftly into action to stamp his Square Deal b r a n d on the Administration and the nation. So vigorous and varied were his first moves as President that Henry Adams said to him: "Roosevelt, more than any other living man within the range of notorietv s h o w e d t h e s i n g u l a ' r p r i m i t i v e q u a l i t y t h a t b e l o n g s t o u l t i m a t e 18m Theodore Roosevelt (First Administration: Sept. 15,1901-March 3,1905) m a t t e r -- t h e q u a l i t y that medieval theory assigned to God--he was pure act." When Roosevelt promised 'to continue absolutely unbroken the policy of President McKinley,"'he was on safe grounds, for McKinlev had formulated no policy except t h a t of s t a n d i n g pat-which was something Roosevelt was utterly incapable of doing. This was made clear by a batch of proposals he outlined in his first a n n u a l message to Congress, the major ones being the regulation of trusts, railroads and banks increased c o n s e r v a t i o n ' e n l a r g e m e n t o f t h e merchant marine, an expanded Armv and Naw and the building of an isthmian canal to link the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. To implement this program the Roosevelt Administration amended the Interstate Commerce Act to regulate railroad rates, passed the Meat Inspection Act, the .Pure Food Law, established t h e D e p a r t m e n t o f Commerce and launched the b u i l d i n g of the Panama Canal. All of this legislation was bullied through a stubborn, reluctant Congress largely by means of the President's shrewd marshaling of supporting public opinion. A voluminous correspondent, a t i r e l e s s t r a v e l e r a n d speaker, readily accessible to people of every persua- CHARLESTON. W. VA. sion and vocation, Theordore Roosevelt was, a master in gauging popular sentiment. It was within this frame of reference that Sen. Robert La Follette of Wisconsin called Roosevelt "the ablest living interpreter of what I would call the superficial public sentiment of a given time." Chicago Tribune editor Medill McCormick was more blunt-spoken. What made Roosevelt great, McCormick said, was that "he understood the psychology of the mutt." Whatever the truth of t h e s e b e l i t t l i n g obser- v a t i o n s , T h e o d o r e Roosevelt's ebullient personality did catch the popular fanry as did no other President up to that time, with t!ie possible exception of Andrew Jackson. Thus, when he decided to be President "in his own right," it turned out to be one of the easiest things he ever did. Unanimously renominated in 1904, Roosevelt defeated Democrat Alton B. Parker, liberal New York jurist, by more than 2.5 million votes, the most crushing defeat given to any major party presidential candidate since the introduction of the pop ular vote. Copyright 1972, Los Angeles Times SPEAKEVG OF BOOKS The legacy of Philip Wylie "THE END OF THE DREAM," by Philip Wylie, Doubleday Co., $5.95 This short novel is Philip Wylie's legacy to us, and its publication marks the final s t a t e m e n t o f t h i s remarkable writer, who died Oct. 25, 1971. Like most of his works, it is a warning and a prophecy, illustrating our follies and the road on which they have placed us. In "The End of the Dream," that road leads, in 50 years from our own time, to the extermination of humanity. Many writers have predicted such an end to human life on earth, from H. G. Wells' "War of the Worlds" written in 1898, down through the many predictions of nuclear war which followed development of atomic and hydrogen bombs. Wylie's predicted end for us is none of these, but "suicide" t h r o u g h massive pollution of earth, air and water. As a frame for his prophecy, Wylie constructs a story of the lifelong losing fight of multi-millionaire Miles Standish Smythe and his friend Willard Page Gulliver to stem the tide of pollution, and the consequences of their failure. That much is fiction. The bulk of the book consists of a "history" of the evolving disaster which has destroyed 90 per cent of the world's population, compiled by Gulliver in the year 2023. Wylie begins this chronicle with situations already existing in 1970-71, to show that the groundwork has already been laid for catastrophe. · Everything he describes can be documented as fact. Having founded his story in f a c t u a l data, Wylie proceeds from that data to Best Sellers (C) 1972 New York Times Service This analysis is based on reports obtained from more than 125 bookstores in 64 communities of the United States. Fiction "Jonathan Livingston Seagull," Bach. "The Winds of War," Wouk. "My Name Is Asher Lev," Potok. "Captains and the Kings," Caldwell. "The Word,"Wallace. General "I'm 0. K.-You're 0. K.," Harris. "0, Jerusalem!" Collins and Lapierre. "The Peter Prescription," Peter. "Eleanor: The Years Alone," Lash. "Open Marriage," O'Neill and O'Neill. Confused heroine "THE PASSIONATE PAST OF GLORIA GAYE," by Bernard Kops. W. W. Norton Co., $6.95. "The "Passionate Past of Gloria Gaye" by Bernard Kops is the type of novel which makes me gnash my teeth in utter frustration. Its heroine is confused and irrational and so is the book's plot. Gloria loses days at a time, believes she is being persecuted, and keeps hoping for a visit from a kindly man named Mr. Moss who was her friend at "The Home". Gloria Gaye has written a n d p r i n t e d a n autobiography about her life, but unfortunately for her, it was entirely make believe. She has convinced herself that she was a music hall star with a host of lovers when in reality she was only a middle class housewife unable to cope w i t h the problems of menopause and the death of her husband The result of all this is self-commitment to an institution, and eventuallv leaving it-against the advice of her doctors--with as many problems as when she entered. Returning to her home she finds that it and all the other houses on her street have been condemned by whatever passes for ur- ban renewal in Great Britain. Now she makes her stand against the forces of a u t h o r i t y , and this act catapults her into the fame which she so desperately desires. Of course she cannot cope with it. For good measure add several murders, real and imaginary, a lost Abyssian cat, three tenants in her home--two aging homosexual artists and a drab female civil servant. Then also add a hoaxish religion run by charlatans, and you have an extremely confused mish mash of a novel which starts nowhere and never goes anywhere. Gloria Gaye may represent Great Britain with all of its contemporary problems. She may be a woman driven irrational by the lack of love, or she might s i m p l y b e m e n t a l l y deranged. Whatever point the author was trying to make it is hopelessly lost along the way, and even if it were made abundantly clear to me I could only reply, so what? If I have revealed so much of the plot of this novel that y^u feel that there is no reason to read it, then I may be doing you a favor. Robert E. DiBarlolomeo Mr. DiBartolomeo it director of Museums for Oglebay Institute, Wheeling. its logical progression in the years immediately following 1971. It is all there; the turning of every river and lake in the United States into a chemical soup of industrial wastes, the growing blanket of smog covering more and more of the nation, even the thousands of chemical additives we permit in our food, all heedless of the possible consequences. When the consequences begin to appear (as some already have) the response by business and government is, do nothing and issue pleasant lies to convince the people that (A) everything possible Is being done to ' correct the situation, and (B) "radical" measures to curb pollution will result in u n e m p l o y m e n t a n d a lowered standard of living Neither of these tactics are products of Wylie's imagination, for they have already been used to cope with periodic public discontent at unbreathable air, undrinkable water, and tasteless "foods." As the '70s turn to the '80s, the real calamities begin, the first being the explosion of the Cuyahoga River.and consequent destruction of Cleveland, Ohio. Industrial pollutants have already caused fires on the river, so Wylie's projection is sound here, as elsewhere. This is dwarfed by the poisonous smog which wipes-out much of New York City in the late '80s, Again, the danger is k n o w n , b u t c o u n t e r measures would be "bad for business," so nothing is done, and more than a million people die. Wylie's description of the meeting of politicians and businessmen the day before the "Saturday Slaughter" reads like a page from a current newspaper in its accurate portrayal of our responses to the air pollution we have now. From there, humanity careens like a mad engineer at t h e t h r o t t l e of a locomotive headed downhill to doom. Famine and man- caused earthquakes complete the annihilation process. The details are less important than Wylie's warning: all the d r e a d f u l happenings could have been prevented. There was time to relieve the conditions which grew unchecked from worse to worse. This book is a fitting monument to Philip Wylie. An even more fitting one would be a concerted effort to prevent it from becoming an accurate prophecy. As Wylie foresaw, such an effort is unlikely to be made, so it might be well to read this "novel" to at least understand what will happen in our lifetime. --Thomas J. Cummins. Mr. Cummins is a free-lance writer of Rialto, Calif. Sunday Gazette-Mail

Get full access with a Free Trial

Start Free Trial

What members have found on this page