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قراءة كتاب Industrial Conspiracies

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‏اللغة: English
Industrial Conspiracies

Industrial Conspiracies

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دار النشر: Project Gutenberg
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The earth is moving, the universe is working, all the laws of creation are working toward justice, toward a better humanity, toward a higher ideal, toward a time when men will be brothers the world over.

Industrial Conspiracies

Noted Lawyer, Philosopher, Author and Humanitarian

Price 10c


Noted Lawyer, Philosopher, Author and Humanitarian

Lecture delivered in Heilig Theatre, Portland, Oregon, September 10, 1912.

Stenographically reported and published by permission of the author.

Published by Turner, Newman and Knispel,
Address Box 701 Portland, Ore.

Single copies of this lecture may be had by sending 10 cents to publishers, 100 copies $6.00, $50.00 per thousand.

Orders must be accompanied by cash or money order. Postage will be prepaid.

Make checks payable to Otto Newman, Publisher.
Box 701, Portland, Oregon.


Publisher's Note.—This address was delivered shortly after Mr. Darrow's triumphant acquittal on a charge growing out of his defense of the McNamaras at Los Angeles, California. The man, the subject and the occasion makes it one of the greatest speeches of our time. It is the hope of the publishers that this message of Mr. Darrow's may reach the millions of men, women and youth of our country, that they may see the labor problem plainer and that they may receive hope and inspiration in their efforts to make a better and juster world.


Copyright, October 3, 1912, by Turner, Newman & Knispel.

Industrial Conspiracies


Mr. Darrow said:

I feel very grateful to you for the warmth and earnestness of your reception. It makes me feel sure that I am amongst friends. If I had to be tried again, I would not mind taking a change of venue to Portland (applause); although I think I can get along where I am without much difficulty.

The subject for tonight's talk was not chosen by me but was chosen for me. I don't know who chose it, nor just what they expected me to say, but there is not much in a name, and I suppose what I say tonight would be just about the same under any title that anybody saw fit to give.

I am told that I am going to talk about "Industrial Conspiracies." I ought to know something about them. And I won't tell you all I know tonight, but I will tell you some things that I know tonight.

The conspiracy laws, you know, are very old. As one prominent laboring man said on the witness stand down in Los Angeles a few weeks ago when they asked him if he was not under indictment and what for, he said he was under indictment for the charge they always made against working men when they hadn't done anything—conspiracy. And that is the charge they always make. It is the one they have always made against everybody when they wanted them, and particularly against working men, because they want them oftener than they do anybody else. (Applause).

When they want a working man for anything excepting work they want him for conspiracy. (Laughter). And the greatest conspiracy that is possible for a working man to be guilty of is not to work—a conspiracy the other fellows are always guilty of. (Applause). The conspiracy laws are very old. They were very much in favor in the Star Chamber days in England. If any king or ruler wanted to get rid of someone, and that someone had not done anything, they indicted him for what he was thinking about; that is, for conspiracy; and under it they could prove anything that he ever said or did, and anything that anybody else ever said or did to prove what he was thinking about; and therefore that he was guilty. And, of course, if anybody was thinking, it was a conspiracy against the king; for you can't think without thinking against a king. (Applause). The trouble is most people don't think. (Laughter and applause). And therefore they are not guilty of conspiracy. (Laughter and applause).

The conspiracy laws in England were especially used against working men, and in the early days, not much more than a hundred years ago, for one working man to go to another and suggest that he ask for higher wages was a conspiracy, punishable by imprisonment. For a few men to come together and form a labor organization in England was a conspiracy. It is not here. Even the employer is willing to let you form labor organizations, if you don't do anything but pass resolutions. (Laughter and applause).

But the formation of unions in the early days in England was a conspiracy, and so they used to meet in the forests and in the rocks and in the caves and waste places and hide their records in the earth where the informers and detectives and Burnes' men of those days could not get hold of them. (Applause). It used to be a crime for a working man to leave the county without the consent of the employer; and they never gave their consent. They were bought and sold with the land. Some of them are now. It reached that pass in England after labor unions were formed, that anything they did was a conspiracy, and to belong to one was practically a criminal offense. These laws were not made by Parliament; of course they were not made by the people. No law was ever made by the people; they are made for the people (applause); and it does not matter whether the people have a right to vote or not, they never make the laws. (Applause).

These laws, however, were made by judges, the same officials who make the laws in the United States today. (Applause).

We send men to the Legislature to make law, but they don't make them.

I don't care who makes a law, if you will let me interpret it. (Laughter). I would be willing to let the Steel Trust make a law if they would let me tell what it meant after they got it made. (Laughter). That has been the job of the judges, and that is the reason the powerful interests of the world always want the courts. They let you have the members of the Legislature, and the Aldermen and the Constable, if they can have the judges.

And so in England the judges by their decisions tied the working man hand and foot until he was a criminal if he did anything but work, as many people think he is today. He actually was at that time, until finally Parliament, through the revolution of the people, repealed all these laws that judges had made, wiped them all out of existence, and did, for a time at least, leave the working man free; and then they began to organize, and it has gone on to that extent in England today, that labor organizations are as firmly established as Parliament itself. Much better established there than here.

We in this country got our early laws from England. We took pretty much