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THIS VOLUME EXPLAINS THE ECONOMIC THEORY OF RATES. IT TREATS
MERCE OF THE COUNTRY
FORMING ONE OF THE SERIES OF VOLUMES COMPRISED
IN THE REVISED AND ENLARGED EDITION OF
MARSHALL M. KIRKMAN
NEW YORK AND CHICAGO
All rights reserved.
What I have to say in reference to railway rates and governmental control is based on well known economic laws. Much has been said and written in regard to the railway problem. So far as rates are concerned there is no problem not known to every student of political economy. The same laws that govern manufacturers and traders govern railways. It has been claimed the making of rates invites the special intervention of the Government. The truth is that air and water do not adjust themselves more naturally than the rates of railways adjust themselves to the vicissitudes of trade.
If there are exceptions the evil contains its own cure and so does not invite statutory enactments.
While it is impossible that the economic principles governing railway rates, as herein explained
- perhaps at too great length-can be successfully controverted, nevertheless I beg to anticipate what is said in another part of this volume in regard to the specific reductions that have been made by the railroads of the United States operating under such laws, i. e., without governmental interference or restraint of any kind. Thus, the railways of America have, "without intervention, voluntarily reduced the rate per ton per mile charged in 1863 from 3.642 cents to .763 cents in 1903, a reduction amounting (on the basis of the business for 1903), to the enormous sum annually of $4,987,040,622.21. The relative im