September: Time To Clean House
1 month ago
I am delighted to be among friends. I know friends when I see them. The interesting thing about you is that you are a cross-section of American society. Few of you were bred in Pasadena or in California. You are from here, there and elsewhere -- all detached places off the boulder of America. You have blasted away the old hillsides and walks where the true veins of ore are exposed to the light.
Most of you are Californians by adoption. Underneath you are a sample of America.
The wonderful thing about you is that you have escaped the provincialism of certain parts of the east. New York is interesting because it is one of the most provincial places in the world. All news in which New York is particularly interested affects New York. New York handles most of the country's money and must be asked permission to let things go on.
All the rest of the United States is moving on: New York is still sitting still. I have one obvious explanation, that she is sitting and taking toll at the customs house.
Some people think of the history of America as the history of the expansion of New England. I once discussed that with a New Englander. His reply was, "Isn't it?" I told him we had better not discuss the subject.
You Californians are of a new pattern, or new stuff, of new color. You are more than merely an expansion of the Eastern coast, but you must not think that the East is an expansion of the West. You owe the East something for your great progress, your prosperity, your unprovincialism. You can't move out of the Eastern states and lose a prepossession of the Eastern states.
We are more inextricably and inconveniently interlaced in the East. It is very difficult to get away from this without openly being charged with irreverence.
That American flag there stands for the biggest kick ever recorded.
As far back as the English constitution goes, quoting Tennyson, 'The great stream of liberty has broken down every precedent.' America in bonds found her young life intolerable. She committed an act of extraordinary irreverence and radicalism. Did it ever occur to you who led the American revolution? Perhaps because of my prepossession as a Virginian you might not take me seriously but the fact is that it was Virginia. She had every material reason to adhere to the old country and no reason at all to break the thongs. The mother country courted her favor and loyalty, but she cut deep the root of independence and took the leadership. Her stand for independence is not paralleled elsewhere in the history of political development.
The emblem of liberty is not all tradition. No man can inherit the true traditions of our emblem and be bound.
The task of statesmanship is the forecasting of things as they must come, and foreshadowing what is to be done to meet these things.
Don't suppose that the elements of all life are laid above the surface. Don't suppose that on September 15 last when I was nominated for governor I emerged from an academic seclusion. Don't suppose that politics are unknown at Princeton university. It is seething with politics. Politics are so strong there that the real article seems like an amateur.
We must disentangle the progress of the life of the interests. Did you ever notice that this problem of the interests is interlaced with every part of public life?
The time has arrived that the American people insist that everybody implicated with the interests shall change their point of view.
It has been the habit — pardon the classic — for gentlemen of great corporate wealth to say 'The public be damned.' The object of business is not to do anybody, not to exploit anybody. The object of business is to derive a reasonable profit by rendering real and honest service.
If you derive a profit by not rendering real and honest service you are a thief. If your charges are unreasonable you are an extortionist. If you shut others out of business you are a public enemy.
It is time to sit up in bed, rub your eyes and wake up.
You have got to be a smart man to win a dishonest profit. There is no routine in dishonesty. You must do new men tomorrow because the ones you did today are on to you.
The problems facing you today are not merely political problems; they are moral problems. Did you ever have reason to believe that those men who had confidential relationships with Aldrich of Rhode Island, who sneaked ambiguities into the tariff, were the stamp to be called on by honest men to develop America?
Some of our bond holders believe the private interests should be served whether the public interest is served or not. This is getting so conspicuous that it is not polite to refer to it. This belief has impregnated our national congress. There are too many keepers of secrets there, but the chief keeper has now been retired to public life. We are now witnessing the blessed process of retirement.
We don't want any more of exclusive privilege. We are trying to do away with that now -- cleaning house, as it were. We want a good broom, one that will play the part of the people.
The initiative and referendum are excellent things -- good brooms, but the recall is the most wholesome reminder. It suddenly calls time on your when you try to work a game on the public.
You don't find republicans as deeply devoted to their party now as heretofore. They are forgetting that the Republican party is carrying out a sacred trust for the country. Nor has the Democratic party any sole mortgage on the devices of liberty.
The world is a pretty poor bronco to buck. It will chuck you sooner or later. There is no mistaking the signs of the times. If you insist on standing for the old order of things you are bound to be upset. If you see an avalanche coming your way go on sitting; you will never be missed.
There are thousands of men in America who have no conscience but they have a weather eye. What conscience they have may start it but the weather eye is going to do the rest.
Few such public utterances on national questions have ever been heard in Pasadena before. Not even the semi-divine Roosevelt came out as strong on his cherished subjects as did Governor Wilson.Assuming Mayor Thomas Earley was at the luncheon, here's his portrait from the Hall of Mayors.
Dear Mrs. Carr:In 1892 the Carrs sold the property to Simeon Reed, founder of Reed College in Oregon. He and his wife Amanda had great plans for building a new home for themselves at Carmelita, but Simeon Reed died of a stroke in 1895. Mrs. Reed continued to live in Pasadena until her death in 1905.
I've seen your sunny Pasadena and the patch called yours.
Everything about here pleases me and I felt sorely tempted to take Dr. Congar's advice and invest in an orange patch myself. I feel sure you will be happy here with the Doctor and Allie among so rich a luxuriance of sunny vegetation, How you will dig and dibble in that mellow loam! I cannot think of you standing erect for a single moment, unless it be in looking away out into the dreamy West.
I made a fine shaggy little five days' excursion back in the heart of the San Gabriel Mountains, and then a week of real pleasure with Congar resurrecting the past about Madison. He has a fine little farm, fine little family, and fine cozy home. I felt at home with Congar and at once took possession of his premises and all that in them is. We drove down through the settlements eastward and saw the best orange groves and vineyards, but the mountains I, as usual, met alone. Although so gray and silent and unpromising they are full of wild gardens and ferneries. Lilyries!--some specimens ten feet high with twenty lilies, big enough for bonnets! The main results I will tell you some other time, should you ever have an hour's leisure.
I go North to-day, by rail to Newhall, thence by stage to Soledad and on to Monterey, where I will take to the woods and feel my way in free study to San Francisco. May reach the City about, the middle of next month. . . .
City directors ordered an immediate start on preparation of plans for a Senior Citizens Center in downtown Memorial Park after two years of discussion. In finally choosing the Memorial Park location, directors sidestepped a triple recommendation that the proposed $90,000 facility be built at Jefferson Recreation Center, 1501 E. Villa. After lengthy studies, the city Planning Commission, the Recreation Commission and the Pasadena Commission for Senior Citizens had all backed the Villa Street location.The Campfire Girls headquarters was at the south end of Memorial Park, where the Senior Center is today. Here's a pre-demolition photo that shows the side and back of the headquarters (note Holly Street and the buildings across the way, which are still there):
We have excellent camps for outdoor activities but still need a permanent local headquarters. Since we left Memorial Park, we have been in temporary headquarters, but a housing committee is now at work formulating plans for what we hope may be a permanent home.