18 August 2010

California Quotes: These Learned Statesmen

"The farmers have set up a wail here and described the difficulties they have had down in these valleys in establishing homes. The miners themselves, many of them, have sailed clear around the horn, and many of them have been balanced upon the point of a horn ever since, in an honest endeavor all the time to find something that would add to the wealth of the State, and certainly they have succeeded, because I see that during the year eighteen hundred and seventy-seven they have produced nearly nineteen million of dollars; and yet these learned statesmen want to go to work and impose this onerous tax upon the men who are endeavoring to bring this wealth to the surface. It is the only industry to-day in this State which pays to the laboring men three dollars and four dollars a day. In my county the ruling rate is four dollars a day for miners. Now the laboring men cut up so about wages down in San Francisco that they have got the wages down to nothing. The only men who pay them full wages in this State are the miners, and yet the Workingmen stand up here and vote to tax them out of existence, and prevent the organization of companies which will pay them better wages than they can get in any other place."

From: Debates and proceedings of the [California] Constitutional convention, Volume II, 1881, p. 911

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