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LABOR AUTOCRACY

NO WRITER ATTRIBUTED

Ever since the demands of the war forced the importance of Labor up to its highest peak, there has been an increasing tendency on the part of the Unions to take an unfair, advantage of their newly-gained position. Strikes, counterstrikes, sympathies, general walkouts, many of them without cause, have successively paralyzed or threatened to do so, the industrial heart of the country. In some cases, indeed, in many, the strikes have been justified for it is but right and progressive that the working man should share in some way the responsibility and success of his labors; but far too many strikes have been called simply because the Union leaders recognized, and admitted, that for the time they had the upper hand over the public, and intended to take full advantage of their opportunity.

The culmination of autocracy is reached, however, when, as was recently the case in New York, real estate men and builders are obliged to bribe the Unions to call off their strike in order that work may proceed. It is not only the fact that a bribe had to be offered; it is the fact that the Union leaders took if, that is to be deploved. For by doing so, they have lifted strikes and their settlement out of the realms of equity, and have brought the whole question down to the auction block. In other words, it is not fair and just treatment that they are campaigning for, but the almighty dollar; and they evidently do not intend to discriminate as to their methods of obtaining it.

There is but one remedy for this, situation; and that lies with the men themselves. Not the leaders, for they are the ones to blame; but the men-the workers who form the great mass of the Unions-it is for them to say that this thing has gone far enough, and must stop. It is for them to make sure that the public, which is already sick of strikes whose names are legion, does not, because of the actions of labor leaders, turn its back with disgust on the whole question of labor's demands, be they fair or otherwise. Whether the men have strength and will enough to censure these "walking delegates" and demagogues, is for them alone to decide. But they must decide, and they must act-and that quickly.

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