FRENZIED FINANCE -- II
[Synopsis of *Frenzied Finance* by Thomas
W. Lawson. New York: Ridgway-Thayer, 1905]
-+- "The System": Finance & Management -+-
Amalgamated Copper was begotten in 1898, born in 1899, and in the
first five years of its existence plundered the public to the
extent of over $100 million.
It was a creature of that incubator of trust and corporation
frauds, the State of New Jersey.
Its entire stock was sold to the public at an average of $115 per
share, and in 1903 the price had declined to $33 per share.
>From its inception it was known as a "Standard Oil" creature,
because its birthplace was the National City Bank of New York
(the "Standard Oil" bank), and its parents the leading "Standard
Oil" lights, Henry H. Rogers, William Rockefeller, and James
"Standard Oil" has from its birth to present writing been
responsible for more hell than any other trust or financial thing
since the world began. Because of it the people have sustained
incalculable losses and have suffered untold miseries.
At the lower end of the greatest thoroughfare in the greatest
city of the New World is a huge structure of plain gray-stone.
The building is No. 26 Broadway.
26 Broadway, New York City, is the home of the Standard Oil. Wall
Street and the financial world know that there are two "Standard
Oils," but to the public there is no clear distinction between
Standard Oil, the corporation which deals in oil and things which
pertain to the manufacture and transportation of oil, and
"Standard Oil," the giant, indefinite system.
Standard Oil, the seller of oil to the people, transacts its
business as does any other corporation. It plays no part in my
story and I shall not hereafter touch upon its affairs, but
confine my meaning, wherever I use the name "Standard Oil," to
the larger and many times more important "System."
The three main men of "Standard Oil" are Henry H. Rogers, William
Rockefeller, and John D. Rockefeller.
There are eight distinct groups of individuals and corporations
which go to make up the big "Standard Oil":
(1) The Standard Oil, seller of oil to the people, which is
made up of many sub-corporations either by actual ownership
or by ownership of their stock or bonds;
(2) Henry H. Rogers, William Rockefeller, and John D.
Rockefeller, active heads, and included with them their
(3) A large group of active captains and first lieutenants,
men who conduct the affairs of the different corporations
or sections of corporations in which some or all of the
"Standard Oil" are interested;
(4) A large group of captains retired from active service
in the Standard Oil army;
(5) The estates of deceased members of this wonderful
"Standard Oil" family, which are still largely controlled
by some or all of the prominent "Standard Oil" men;
(6) "Standard Oil" banks and banking institutions, and the
system of national banks, trust companies, and insurance
companies, of which "Standard Oil" has, by ownership and
otherwise, practically absolute control;
(7) The "Standard Oil" army of followers, capitalists, and
workers in all parts of the world;
(8) The countless hordes of politicians, statesmen,
lawmakers and enforcers -- our political structure -- and
judges and lawyers.
"Standard Oil's" governing rules are as rigid as the laws of the
Medes and Persians, yet so simple as to be easily understood by
(1) Keep your mouth closed, as silence is gold, and gold is
what we exist for;
(2) Collect our debts today. Pay the other fellow's debts
(3) Keep the seller waiting; the longer he waits, the less
he'll take. Hurry the buyer, as his money brings us
(4) Make all profitable bargains in the name of "Standard
Oil," chancey ones in the names of dummy corporations;
(5) Never forget our Legal Department is paid by the year,
and our land is full of courts and judges;
(6) As competition is the life of trade (our trade), and
monopoly the death of trade (our competitor's trade),
employ both judiciously;
(7) Never enter into a "butting" contest with the
Government. Our Government is by the people and for the
people, and we are the people, and those people who are not
us can be hired by us;
(8) Always do "right." Right makes might, might makes
dollars, dollars make right, and we have the dollars.
The success of "Standard Oil" is largely due to two things -- to
the loyalty of its members to each other and to "Standard Oil,"
and to the punishment of its enemies. Each member before
initiation knows its religion to be reward for friends and
extirmination for foes. The "Standard Oil" man is constantly
reminded in a thousand and one ways that punishment for
disloyalty is sure and terrible, and that in no corner of the
earth can he escape it, nor can any power on earth protect him
"Standard Oil" is never loud in its rewards nor its punishments.
It does not care for the public's praise [except through phony
P.R.] nor for its condemnation, but endeavors to avoid both by
keeping its "business" to itself.
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