Urging a constructive national policy in the matter of business, George W. Perkins, the retired New York financier, proposes the following questions as fit subjects for a congressional inquiry:—

"Has the cost of articles made by the so-called trusts increased or decreased? have wages increased or decreased? has labor been more steadily employed and better housed—more generally employed and better satisfied? have there been fewer failures in the lines of business involved? have the so-called trusts increased or decreased our foreign trade balances? have the so-called trusts devised ways and means and provided capital for saving and utilizing waste products which could not have been done by smaller concerns? is the tendency to have the ownership of these large companies and the profits made by them enjoyed by a few men or by many men? Is the tendency to have these corporations in the future create, by their profits, large fortunes for a few men, as was the case in partnerships under competitive methods, or is the tendency to distribute such profits more generally among the people."

In an address at the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Michigan School of Mines, Director George Otis Smith of the United States geological survey declared that the objects to be sought by amendment of the public land laws are, first, purposeful and economical development of resources for which there is present demand, with retention of such control as may prevent unnecessary waste or excessive charges to the consumer; and second, the reservation to the people of the title to all resources the utilization of which is conjectural or at least the need of which is not immediate. The means that are essential to the attainment of these objects are, first, the classification of the public lands; second, the separation of surface and mineral rights; and third, the disposition of the lands on terms that will insure the highest use, enforce development, and protect the public interest.

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August 19, 1911

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