Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 117 pages of information about Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays.
with their articles; the point is that they are.  The work is done worse because it is done weakly and without human enthusiasm.  And it is done weakly because of the truth we have told so many times in this book:  that it is not done for monarchy, for which men will die; or for democracy, for which men will die; or even for aristocracy, for which many men have died.  It is done for a thing called Capitalism:  which stands out quite clearly in history in many curious ways.  But the most curious thing about it is that no man has loved it; and no man died for it.


If there is to rise out of all this red ruin something like a republic of justice, it is essential that our views should be real views; that is, glimpses of lives and landscapes outside ourselves.  It is essential that they should not be mere opium visions that begin and end in smoke—­and so often in cannon smoke.  I make no apology, therefore, for returning to the purely practical and realistic point I urged last week:  the fact that we shall lose everything we might have gained if we lose the idea that the responsible person is responsible.

For instance, it is almost specially so with the one or two things in which the British Government, or the British public, really are behaving badly.  The first, and worst of them, is the non-extension of the Moratorium, or truce of debtor and creditor, to the very world where there are the poorest debtors and thc cruellest creditors.  This is infamous:  and should be, if possible, more infamous to those who think the war right than to those who think it wrong.  Everyone knows that the people who can least pay their debts are the people who are always trying to.  Among the poor a payment may be as rash as a speculation.  Among the rich a bankruptcy may be as safe as a bank.  Considering the class from which private soldiers are taken, there is an atrocious meanness in the idea of buying their blood abroad, while we sell their sticks at home.  The English language, by the way, is full of delicate paradoxes.  We talk of the private soldiers because they are really public soldiers; and we talk of the public schools because they are really private schools.  Anyhow, the wrong is of the sort that ought to be resisted, as much in war as in peace.

Ought to Be Hammered

But as long as we speak of it as a cloudy conclusion, come to by an anonymous club called Parliament, or a masked tribunal called the Cabinet, we shall never get such a wrong righted.  Somebody is officially responsible for the unfairness; and that somebody ought to be hammered.  The other example, less important but more ludicrous, is the silly boycott of Germans in England, extending even to German music.  I do not believe for a moment that the English people feel any such insane fastidiousness.  Are the

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Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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