Queer Rancher This
Conconully, Aug. 29.—Rather than
pay taxes which, according to his socialistic beliefs, are unwarranted,
an Okanogan county [sic] rancher has cut down the trees on 20
acres of bearing orchards, and refuses to pay on the valuation
of $[?]0 an acre, fixed by the assessor.
These orchards have been his principal
source of revenue and he has always been able to sell the fruit
at a good figure. This spring, when the valuation of orchard
lands throughout the county was raised by the assessor, he began
cutting down his trees, and when the deputy called to appraise
his ranch, showed the denuded lands and insisted on their classification
as plow-lands.—Associated Press.
The Conconully rancher is no more
a socialist than was Czolgosz, the murderer of McKinley. Both may
call themselves socialists, but they are just as liable to call
themselves esoteric-transcendentalists with leanings toward spasmodic
Parseeism. In either case the man is not in a condition mentally
to classify his belief or to hold to any belief consistently and
reasonably. The Conconully rancher is obviously insane, as Czolgosz
was obviously insane besides being underwitted.
Socialism is no more responsible for
the Conconully man’s vagaries than the Christian religion is responsible
for the fact that the insane asylums are full of people who have
gone insane from worrying over bapti[s]m, regeneration and sanctification;
than the doctrine of philosophic anarchy is responsible for the
murder of McKinley. Czolgosz claimed to be both socialist and anarchist,
whereas he couldnot [sic] have been both any more than a man can
be a free trader and a high tariff advocate at the tame [sic] time—any
more than a compound can at one and the same time be an oil, or
Socialism is not responsible (though
the Associated Press would have us believe otherwise) for the Conconully
man’s refusal to pay taxes.
The doctrine of socialism in the Conconully
man’s case fell into a mind that was warped and “checked” in the
first place, and if it had not been socialism to “lay it to” he
would have probably dug up some passage of Scriptures to justify
his irrationalness. In any event he was determined to “go bughouse”
in some way. Certain it is that not a single tenet of any school
of socialism can be found that will justify non-payment of taxes
or non-acquiescence in any of the laws of the land.