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The provisions in the army reorganization bill for drafting man-power during a "national emergency" as well as during a state of war, represent an effort to deal with a situation which has long demanded attention. The National government should have the power to deal effectively with any national crisis that may arise.
The "American Union Against Militarism" suggests that these provisions might be used against a strike. It is now widely recognized that certain strikes do constitute national emergencies. In the coal strike of last winter a small percentage of the population threatened to disrupt the life of the entire country. If such action does not constitute civil war, it is certainly as dangerous as any open, armed conflict might be. These provisions might be used against a nation-wide strike in an essential industry. They should be used in such an emergency.
It is time to remove from the great federations of labor a power which ought never to have been theirs--the power of threatening the nation with a period of economic helplessness. Had these measures been in force the Adamson Bill might never have passed, the painful twisting of the Lever Act might have been unnecessary,--in short, the disgraceful interim in government by the peoples' representatives might never have occurred.
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