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legislation, so that all persons similarly circumstanced shall be treated alike. The latitude of discretion is notably wide in the classification of property for purposes of taxation and the granting of partial or total exemptions upon grounds of policy. Bell's Gap R. R. Co. v. Pennsylvania, 134 U. S. 232, 237, 10 Sup. Ct. 533, 33 L. Ed. 892; Michigan Central Railroad v. Powers, 201 U. S. 245, 293, 26 Sup. Ct. 459, 50 L. Ed. 744; Keeney v. New York, 222 U. S. 525, 536, 32 Sup. Ct. 105, 56 L. Ed. 299, 38 L. R. A (N. S.) 1139; Citizens' Telephone Co. v. Fuller, 229 U. S. 322, 329, 33 Sup. Ct. 833, 57 L. Ed. 1206; Northwestern Life Ins. Co. v. Wisconsin, 247 U. S. 132, 139, 38 Sup. Ct. 444, 62 L. Ed. 1205. Nevertheless a discriminatory tax law cannot be sustained against the complaint of a party aggrieved if the classifica- "Persons and corporations *doing a part of tion appear to be altogether illusory. Now their business within the state and a part withboth of the taxing provisions here in ques-out the state, and having offices or other regution relate to corporations organized under lar places of business both within and without the laws of Virginia. It is the object of as is derived from business transacted and the state, shall be taxed only upon such income chapter 495 to exempt such corporations property located within the state, which may from income taxes (as well as taxes upon in- be determined by an allocation and separate actangible property) where they do no business counting," etc. within the state except holding their stockholders' meetings therein; manifestly in recognition of the fact that Virginia corporations so circumstanced derive no governmental protection from the state warranting the imposition of taxes upon their incomes derived from without the state or property taxes upon their intangibles, and in recognition of the impolicy, if not injustice, of imposing such taxes upon them while they are liable,
against them for that which ought to operate if at all in their favor. It is obvious that the ground of difference upon which the discrimination is rested has no fair or substantial relation to the proper object sought to be accomplished by the legislation. It follows that it is arbitrary in effect; and none the less because it is probable that the unequal operation of the taxing system was due to inadvertence rather than design.
We suggest that it was inadvertent because shortly after the present suit was brought, and as if in recognition of and in order to correct the discrimination, the revenue act was amended by Act of March 14, 1918 (chapter 219, Va. Acts, p. 395), providing:
But this was not retrospective, and, for the reasons given, we are constrained to hold that so far as chapter 472 of the Laws of 1916 operated to impose upon plaintiff in error a tax upon income derived from business transacted and property located without the state because of the mere circumstance that it also derived income from business transacted and property located within the state, while at the same time, under chapter 495, other corporations deriving their existence and powers from the laws of the same state, and receiving income from business transacted and property located without the state, but none from sources within the state, were exempted from income taxes, there was an arbitrary discrimination amounting to a denial to plaintiff in error of the equal protection of the laws within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment.
Judgment reversed, and the cause remanded for further proceedings not inconsistent with this opinion.
and presumably subjected, to taxation in the state or states where their income-producing business is conducted. But no ground is suggested, nor can we conceive of any, sustaining this exemption which does not apply with equal or greater force as a ground for exempting from taxation the income of Virginia corporations derived from sources without the state where they also transact income-producing business within the state. Corporations of this class derive no more protection from the state of their origin with respect to their outside business, and are no less subject to taxation by the states in which such business is conducted, than corporations of the other class; and they are required to comply with the same laws as to the payment of organization taxes and annu-emptions in state taxation are not forbidden al registration fees and franchise taxes to by the equal protection clause of the Fourthe state of origin. Their business done with- teenth Amendment; that the power of the in the state presumably is of some general state to make any reasonable classification benefit to the state, certainly enriches its of property, occupations, persons or corporatreasury by the amount of the taxes they pay tions for purposes of taxation is not abridged upon the income derived therefrom; and the thereby; and that the amendment forbids imposition upon them under chapter 472 of merely inequality which is the result of taxes not only upon this income, but also clearly arbitrary action and, particularly, of upon income that they derive from business *418 conducted outside of the state (similar in- action *attributable to hostile discrimination come of the favored corporations being ex- against particular persons or classes. Beers empted) has the effect of discriminating v. Glynn, 211 U. S. 477, 485, 29 Sup. Ct. 186,
It is settled that mere inequalities or ex
Mr. Justice BRANDEIS dissenting, with whom Mr. Justice HOLMES concurs.
53 L. Ed. 290; Merchants' Bank v. Pennsyl- | franchise tax $225. Acts of 1903, c. 148, §§ vania, 167 U. S. 461, 463, 464, 17 Sup. Ct. 37, 43, 41, pp. 179, 182, 180, as amended re829, 42 L. Ed. 236; Bell's Gap Railroad v. spectively by Acts of 1912, c. 301; Acts 1910, Pennsylvania, 134 U. S. 232, 237, 10 Sup. Ct. c. 58; Acts 1908, c. 227. In the year 1915533, 33 L. Ed. 892. The question presented 1916 the fees and taxes from this source agfor our decision is whether the action of Vir- gregated $114,175.80.1 The number of charginia in subjecting its domestic corporations ters issued was 1067-many of them, as the which transact business within the state to list indicates, to companies whose business a tax on all their income, wherever earned, would be transacted wholly without the while exempting from the tax those domes- state of Virginia.2 The dangers from competic corporations which transact no business tition incident to less burdensome corporawithin the state, is so clearly arbitrary or tion laws of other states had, in other coninvidious, as to fall within the constitution- nections, been considered by the tax commisal prohibition. sion. It may well have been the case that the Legislature did not wish to put in peril revenues already being received from concerns which, as they transacted no business within the state, might easily have surrendered their Virginia charters and reincorporated under the laws of the other states;
The court declares the act void on the ground that no substantial reason for difference in treatment between the two classes of domestic corporations has been suggested or can be conceived; and that the classification is illusory and the state's action arbitrary. I can conceive of a reason for differentiating in respect to taxation between the two classes of domestic corporations. The following reason is, in my opinion, substantial, and shows that the classification is not illusory, nor the state's action necessarily arbitrary or invidious.
It is a matter of common knowledge that some states have, in the past, made the granting of charters to nonresidents for companies, which purpose transacting business wholly without the state of incorporation, an important source of revenue. The action of those states has materially affected the legislation of other states. Sometimes it has led to active competition for the large revenues believed to be available from this More often, it has led to protective measures. The Legislature of Virginia may have believed that its own citizens interested in corporations whose business was transacted wholly in other states or countries, might be tempted to incorporate under more favorable laws of other states, but that such temptation would prove ineffective where the companies transacted a part of their busi
ness within the state of Virginia and enjoyed compensating advantages. If the Legislature of Virginia enacted the laws of 1916 here in question because it held that view, we surely cannot say that its action was unreasonable or arbitrary. And with the wisdom of its action we have no concern.
If there were a doubt as to its reasonableness the facts which were, or may have been, before the Legislature should be considered. Every private domestic business corporation makes a substantial contribution to the revenues of Virginia, even if it is not subjected to property or income taxes. It pays an organization tax on incorporation, and annually thereafter both a registration fee and an annual franchise tax. These fees and taxes are graduated. For a corporation with a $1,000,000 capital the organization fee is $200; the annual registration fee and
and it would have been natural that to avert
I cannot doubt that the classification for purposes of taxation made by the act of 1916 was within the power of the state. But if I did not think the matter clear, I should, for the reasons stated by me fully elsewhere, feel constrained to resolve the doubt in favor of the constitutionality of the act.
1 Report of Auditor of Virginia (1916) p. 66; Report of State Corporation Commission of Virginia (1916) p. 270.
2 Report of State Corporation Commission of Virginia (1916) pp. 226-248, 269.
Report of Virginia Tax Commission (1911) p. 354. Report of Joint Committee on Tax Revision (Virginia, 1914) p. 203.
(253 U. S. 447)
BEIDLER v. UNITED STATES.
(Argued April 27 and 28, 1920. Decided June 7, 1920.)
1. PATENTS 118-OPERATION
Under Rev. St. § 4888 (Comp. St. § 9432), requiring disclosure of the best mode of an application of the discovery, specifications of patent for photographing and developing apparatus held not to include in the description of the operation the giving of an oscillating movement to the film to cause its prompt submergence in the developer, without which the operation would be unsuccessful.
2. PATENTS 328 1,057,397 FOR PHOTO-
FRINGED BY PHOTO-COPYING MACHINE MAN-
Photo-copying machine known as Photostat, manufactured and sold under Green patent, No. 1,001,019, held not an infringement of Beidler patent, No. 1,057,397, if the latter were valid.
See, also, 40 Sup. Ct. 9, 64 L. Ed.
The Attorney General, Mr. Frank Davis, Jr., Asst. Atty. Gen., and Messrs. Daniel L. Morris, and Edward G. Curtis, Sp. Asst. Attys. Gen., for the United States.
which it is claimed is new and useful. The invention is declared in the specification to consist in "the details of construction and in the arrangement and combination of the parts," as "set forth and claimed" by the inventor.
This is a suit to recover damages for the infringement of 5 of the 41 claims of letters patent No. 1,057,397, applied for March 23, 1907, and granted on March 25, 1913.
Figure 1 of the drawings, forming a part of the specification, will aid in explaining the construction and function of the invention as claimed and in determining the character and extent of the disclosures of the patent.
*The described mode of operation is substantially as follows:
W is a roll of sensitized paper or film placed immediately below the exposure chamber F of a camera, with its sensitized surface uppermost to receive the desired image, reflected from the mirror H. This film is fed into the chamber between the rolls b, and thence along the floor to the rollers D where it emerges from the camera and is seized by "clips" or clamps N. These Suit by George C. Beidler against the clamps are supported and carried by a rack United States to recover damages for in- M, and may be moved to and fro (reciprofringement of a patent. Decree for defend- cated) by turning the pinions L on the shaft ant (53 Ct. Cl. 636), and complainant ap-K, by means of a crank. peals. Affirmed.
Appeal from the Court of Claims.
I, J and J' are shallow pans or "tanks" in which suitable "developing," "fixing," and "washing" solutions or fluids are placed and the whole of the construction to the right of
the camera, as we face the print, is inclosed
in a light-proof case E, referred to in the patent sometimes as a "compartment" and sometimes as a "chamber." The rack M, and the clamps which hold and support the film, move above the tanks and necessarily above
The specification describes the claimed invention as an improvement in photographing. and developing apparatus, and as designed primarily for reproducing writings, drawings, pictures or the like, "novel means being also provided to convey the sensitized film through a series of receptacles containing suitable developing and fixing fluids or though suitable baths, according to requirements."
*The patent is for a machine made up of a combination of elements all of which were old, to produce a result which was old but by a method of co-ordination and operation
. Mr. Justice CLARKE delivered the opin- the level of the liquid within them. By turnion of the Court. ing the pinion L, the rack M is moved outwardly away from the camera, and the clamps draw the film after them until the required length is attained, when it is severed from the roll by a manually operated cutter,
When the film is thus cut to the *desired length, obviously only the free end will fall to the surface of the solution in the tank 1, and by continuing the outward movement of the rack M, the specification declares, “the film is carried through the several tanks." The "clips" or clamps are set and released automatically and at the limit of the outward movement the film is released and falls into the tank J. By reversing the turning of the pinions L the rack and clamps are returned inwardly to the camera, so that the operation, just detailed, may be repeated.
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The Court of Claims carries into its find-confessedly necessary to successful operaings of fact fourteen patents as illustrativo tion of the machine, is disclosed in the patent, of the prior art, and with this exhibit before as it must be to render it valid. R. S. § 4888 us we fully agree with that court that the (Comp. St. § 9432). claim of invention of appellant must be restricted to the disclosed construction and operation of the mechanism for carrying the exposed section of film "through the develop ing and other solutions or liquids" after it leaves the camera.
The only description of the mode of operation of appellant's machine, and the statute requires that this must be the best mode known to the patentee (R. S. § 4888), is found in the specification and is as follows:
In the description of the operation of the machine as we have just given it, there is no provision other than gravity for causing the free end of the film, when it is cut from the roll, to sink into the developing fluid, and the other end of it is held between the clamps, above the surface of the fluid, as it is drawn along from one tank to another. The Court of Claims found that under such conditions of operation all of the film would not be submerged with sufficient rapidity and uniformity to secure a proper and useful development of the image and this conclusion is not seriously disputed. But the appellant contends that the required submergence may be obtained by oscillating the rack and clamps (and thereby the film) back and forth within the range of a few inches when the film is over the first tank I, with the result that the free end of the film, first sinking into the fluid,
is turned under and over and the exposed side of it wholly submerged and thereby developed.
*In reply to this it is contended by the Government that the disclosures of the patent do not contain any suggestion of a short, reciprocating movement of the rack, such as is thus relied upon, and that the drawings provide for a construction of the machine which would be inoperative if such movement were resorted to.
Upon this subject the finding of the Court of Claims is, that the machine can be rendered operative only "by resorting to a new oscillating mode of operation evolved by the claimant for submerging and developing the film," and that such mode of operation is not disclosed in the patent. On the contrary, it is especially found that:
"By the method contemplated and disclosed in the patent, the film with the exposed side up, held at one end by the clamps attached to the rack M and moving in a plane above the pans containing the developing and fixing fluids, is intended, by the outward movement of the rack, to be drawn successively through the developing and fixing fluids, the rack moving in one direc
tion only through its entire course, the end of the film next the knife and away from the clamps falling, when severed by the knife, on the surface of the developer in the first pan and submerging by gravity."
[1, 2] Treating this finding by the court as an interpretation of the patent and therefore as a conclusion of law and subject to review, we are brought to the question whether the short, reciprocating movement of the rack,
"In order to draw the film through the several compartments, I provide a mechanism con
sisting of a shaft K, *having toothed wheels L,
We agree with the Court of Claims that
this language describes a movement of the
rack M, carrying the clamps N, in one direction only outwardly and progressively away from the camera-until the movement is completed and the film is released, and that the reciprocating movement referred to in the patent is the return of the mechanism for clamping and carrying the film to its initial position for the purpose of repeating the operation.
There is nothing in the disclosure or in the claims to suggest the arresting of the outward movement of the clamps as soon as the film is severed from the roll and the initiating thereupon of a short oscillating movement of the mechanism to and fro, until the film shall have been immersed in the developing liquid sufficiently to bring out the image photographed. It is very clear that no such operation can be derived from the disclosure in the patent, and we agree with the further finding of the Court of Claims that in order to permit "this new oscillating mode of operation evolved by the claimant" material changes would be required in the construction of the machine, from that disclosed in the description and drawings.
*The statutes, which are the source of all patent rights, provide that a valid patent may be granted for a new and useful machine, or for a new and useful improvement thereof (R. S. § 4886 [Comp. St. § 9430]), but they require that every applicant for a patent shall file a written description of the manner and process of making and using his invention "in such full, clear, concise and
exact" terms as to enable any person skilled | Acts had attached thereto all proceedings prior in the art to which it relates to make and to the appeal to Secretary of Labor, and construct it, and in case of a machine the de- prayed that proceedings thereafter be made a scription must disclose the best mode in part of petition when they became available, which the inventor has contemplated the ap- petition to the immigration records filed with the courts should give effect in interpreting the plication of his discovery. R. S. § 4888. the petition and with the respondent's return.
Ever since Grant et al. v. Raymond, 6 Pet. 218, 247, 8 L. Ed. 376, it has been consistently held that a correct and adequate description or disclosure of a claimed discovery While the decision by the Secretary of La(which, in the case of a machine, involves bor on the exclusion of a Chinese person is particularly the operation of it) is essential final unless the proceedings were manifestly unfair or show manifest abuse of discretion, to the validity of a patent, for the reason that such a disclosure is necessary in order to give the public the benefit of the invention after the patent shall expire. The source of the power to grant patents, and the consideration for granting them, is the advantage which the public will derive from them, especially after the expiration of the patent monopoly, when the discoveries embodied in them shall become a part of the public stock of knowledge.
the decision must be made after a hearing in good faith, however summary, and must find adequate support in the evidence.
 This result renders it unnecessary to consider the further conclusion of the court
below that the use by the *United States of
The application of these requirements of the law to our conclusion that the only form of construction of the machine and the only method of operation of it which are disclosed in the patent would not produce a sufficiently uniform and rapid development of the film gation the three white witnesses were conto render it useful, must result in the ap-fronted with petitioner, and there was mutual proval of the judgment of the Court of recognition, rendered the report unfair, so that Claims, that the patent is invalid and void, the Secretary's order for exclusion was not for the reason that it fails to disclose a prac- final. tical and useful invention.
Where three white citizens had testified that tion to determine his status before he visited petitioner was a native Chinese upon investigaChina, but identified him only from his photograph, and on his return he was excluded as not being the person he claimed to have been in the preliminary investigation, the omission from the record sent to the commissioner of immigration and, on appeal, to Secretary of Labor, of statement that on the later investi
2. ALIENS 32(9) DECISION EXCLUDING CHINESE MUST BE BASED ON FAIR HEARING.
(253 U. S. 454)
KWOCK JAN FAT v. WHITE, Commissioner of Immigration.
3. ALIENS 32(9) - OMISSION FROM RECORD
OF STATEMENT THAT WHITE WITNESS PERSON-
4. ALIENS 32(9) POWER OF SECRETARY OVER CHINESE MUST BE OPENLY ADMINISTERED.
The great power given Secretary of Labor by the Acts of Congress over Chinese immigrants and persons of Chinese descent must be administered, not arbitrarily and secretly, but fairly and openly, under the restraints of the tradition and principles of free government applicable where the fundamental rights of men are involved.
Petition for habeas corpus by Kwock Jan Fat against Edward White, as Commissioner of Immigration at the Port of San Francisco. Judgment of the District Court, sustaining demurrer to the petition, was affirmed by the Circuit Court of Appeals (255 Fed. 323, 166 C. C. A. 493), and petitioner brings certior(Argued and Submitted April 30, 1920. De- ari. Reversed, and cause remanded to the cided June 7, 1920.) District Court for trial on the merits.
1. HABEAS CORPUS 55, 77 RECORDS IN CHINESE EXCLUSION PROCEEDINGS ATTACHED TO HABEAS CORPUS PETITION AND WITH RE
TURN SHOULD BE CONSIDERED IN INTERPRET-D. C., for petitioner.
ING THE PETITION.
On writ of Certiorari to the United States
Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Cir
See, also, 249 U. S. 596, 39 Sup. Ct. 291, 63 L. Ed. 794.
*Mr. Jackson H. Ralston, of Washington,
Mr. Assistant Attorney General Stewart Where petition for habeas corpus for dis- and Mr. Harry S. Ridgely, of Washington, D. charge in proceedings under Chinese Exclusion C., for respondent.
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