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The leaves which drop from trees, grown gray with the dread of winter, are not unique in definition of autumn. Politics, that ancient blade, primps in the forum and takes tea with Lord Teazle now an Irish peer to keep the metaphor. And fall is here.
In a country of popular government--popular with those in office, unpopular with the rest, the voice of the people must be heard at some favorable time. It usually resounds in November in stadium, forum, or in the still static affected vehicle of current propagandizing, the radio. What does it say? The answer is rather obvious, dividing into such natural divisions as did ancient Gaul: I like football; I like the Democratic Party; I like the Republican Party: And that is that.
Yet even the voice of the people must have a subject of conversation, precise enough to make argument possible. The oracle continues: I like inanity, I like the innocuous. So Prohibition and personality hold the stage. One man will vote for John P. O'Doe because "he's really a good scout, has made a little money and wants the wife's picture in the papers. You can't blame him." Another votes for Peter P. Pringle, Esq., because "he has his little nip with the boys now and then; a man who will get us drinks if he can Good old Pete!" A third may rationalize a trifle. "I can't vote for Oscar T. Newton center: he's a Republican." Thus speaks the voice of the people.
Cliches, bromides! Of course the obvious, the usual, the true are all that Yet a solid South votes Democratic, remembering days when "The Birth of a Nation" was in the cradle of the deep beyond, and the negro question remains as cryptic, unsounded as the riddles of the sages. A farm group in the west knock in vain at the doors of public intelligence to find they beat as against wind. The great issues lie on the shelves, gathering dust, while politicians parade pretty toys for the inveterate voters. They know that the intellectuals will be off deciding whether the reactionary or the radical is the best fall bonnet, and as in the consulship of Marcellus, winter will come, spring will follow, and politics will have done little more than to parade in the public prints as featuring the latest fancies in popular sentiment. If democracy meant government by the people and man were a thinking being instead of a being possessed of emotive discursiveness the then the fall would not be half so amusing.
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