Message of Governor O. B. Colquitt to the thirty-second legislature of Texas. Page: 14 of 24
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effort should not be paralyzed, but criminal combinations
should be broken up. The state should not seek solace in suits for
penalties and have its laws appeased by a mere monetary payment.
But let the criminal provisions of the trust laws be enforced as a
vindication of the public's right to protection from imposition, combinations
Whenever the state compromises with these violators of its law
for money it takes a partnership interest in the vice which it denounces.
Not a single so-called trust that has paid a penalty as
such but what is now doing business in Texas, either in its own name
or under some other, and in most cases has added many times the
amount of the penalty paid the state to the price of articles controlled
by it and in every such case the consumer has contributed
the penalty the state collected.
I insist that the penal provisions of the law should be enforced.
In this way alone will unlawful combinations in restraint of trade be
broken up. The law should also be so amended as to deprive any
officer of the state of the right to make "compromises" with violators
of the anti-trust laws of Texas.
I have always favored the suppression of the free-pass evil, but
the so-called anti-pass law should be amended so as to make its purposes
and provisions clearer. The Railroad Commission, charged as
it is by the law with part responsibility for its enforcement, has found
much difficulty in harmonizing many of its conflicting provisions.
The law should be amended so as to remove the restraint on the freedom
of contract to the extent at least of allowing newpapers to sell
their advertising space and accept in exchange for it railroad transportation.
I do not believe that a newspaper could thus be corrupted
with railroad transportation, as has been imputed by some. A "fair
exchange of property is not robbery" and should not be made a
crime either. A change should be made, empowering the Railroad
Commision, in worthy instances like that of the Volunteer Firemen
attending their state conventions, to make a special rate for that
purpose or, on application of the railroad companies, to approve, by
order, free transportation for the delegates. The Voluteer Firemen
of the State are an unselfish set of men, who give their time and jeopardize
their lives to protect the lives and property of others, without
hope of material reward. Surely it can do no injury to good morals
or to good public policy to amend this law as suggested. It should be
amended, too, so as to apply to persons of all classes alike who are
engaged in charitable work.
THE TEXT BOOK LAW.
The Thirtieth Legislature passed an amended text book law, and
it will be the duty of the Legislature to deal with that question. I
recommend that this law be amended so as to prevent such frequent
changes in the children's school books. The children hardly have time
to get acquainted with one list of books before they are changed.
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Colquitt, O. B. Message of Governor O. B. Colquitt to the thirty-second legislature of Texas., book, 1911; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth5834/m1/14/: accessed July 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .