Jacob A. Riis (18491914). Theodore Roosevelt, the Citizen. 1904.
I spoke in a New England town, a prosperous, happy town, where the mills were all running, property booming, the people busy; but there was a fly in the ointment, after all. It came out when I expressed my pleasure at what I had seen.
Yes, they said, we are all that; and we would be perfectly happy but for the meanest politics that ever disgraced a town.
When I settled into my seat in the train to think it over, this paragraph from a sermon on Money-madness stared me in the facecuriously, it was preached by the pastor of the biggest money-king of them all, so the paper said:
In these days there is such a hunt after wealth that the efforts of our best men are withdrawn from the public service. The men of the stamp of Jefferson, of Washington, who gave themselves to their country, are not now to be found in legislative halls; they are corporation lawyers.
And before I had time to run over in my mind the shining exceptions I knew, the Roots, the Tafts, the Knoxes, the Garfields, and the rest of them, and who only brought out more