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Makers of Madness eBook

Hermann Hagedorn
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 33 pages of information about Makers of Madness.

GROSVENOR

No, Conroy, no.  I don’t agree with you.  I may possibly not lose financially by this war, but nevertheless, war is terrible, awful.  The Christian sense balks at it.  Only, I feel this way, sometimes when the honor of the nation demands—­

CONROY

You damn bluff!

GROSVENOR

[Confronting him.

Conroy!  If you please!

[POLLEN, a tall, thin man in the late forties, enters left.  He has an impassive, intellectual face, interesting though unsympathetic.  His manner is calm and quietly alert, suggestive of reserve power.

POLLEN

[Without cordiality.

Hello, Conroy.  Hello, Mr. Grosvenor.

GROSVENOR

[Obsequious at once.

Mr. Pollen!

CONROY

I was just going to send a note round to you, Pollen.  Couldn’t get you on the phone.  What d’ye think?  Yes or no?

POLLEN

[With a faint, ironic smile.

Yes.

GROSVENOR

[Excitedly.

What?

CONROY

[Deliberately.

Are you sure?

GROSVENOR

How can you be sure?

POLLEN

I have two reasons.  One, because the biggest banker in the country told me so.  That’s unimportant.  He may have been lying.  The other, because—­

[He smiles quietly.

my papers tell me so.

[He picks up one of the papers off the floor.

I see you have been honoring me by reading them.  Don’t my papers tell you that there’s going to be war?

CONROY

No one pretends, Pollen, that your papers are wonders of undecorated truth.

POLLEN

Well, this time, trust them.  What if they do lie about facts occasionally?  I am not interested in facts.  Facts are always misleading.  But I know something about psychology—­

CONROY

And you’re sure?

GROSVENOR

How can you be sure?

POLLEN

[Standing at the window.

Because the people are smelling blood.  That’s why.  And now they won’t let up till they’re satisfied.  I’ve watched the war-feeling growing for a year.  I tried ’em out on headlines and editorials, first little mild fellows to set them thinking.  Then, when their thoughts were set toward trouble, well, we increased the percentage of oxygen.

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