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.
Perhaps you blame Belgium for being sentimental about her frontier; or England for being sentimental about her word.  If so, blame them; or whichever of them you think is to blame.  Or again, it is barely possible that you may think, as I do, that the whole loathsome load has been laid upon us by the monarchy which I have not named; still less wasted time in abusing.  But if there be in Europe a military State which has not the religion of Russia, yet has helped Russia to tyrannise over the Poles, that State cares not for religion, but for tyranny.  If there be a State in Europe which has not the religion of the Austrians, but has helped Austria to bully the Servians, that State cares not for belief, but for bullying.  If there be in Europe any people or principality which respects neither republics nor religions, to which the political ideal of Paris is as much a myth as the mystical ideal of Moscow, then blame that:  and do more than blame.  In the healthy and highly theological words of Robert Blatchford, drive it back to the Hell from which it came.

Crying Over Spilt Blood

But whatever you do, do not blame everybody for what was certainly done by somebody.  It may be it is no good crying over spilt blood, any more than over spilt milk.  But we do not find the culprit any more by spilling the milk over everybody; or by daubing everybody with blood.  Still less do we improve matters by watering the milk with our tears, nor the blood either.  To say that everybody is responsible means that nobody is responsible.  If in the future we see Russia annexing Rutland (as part of the old Kingdom of Muscovy), if we see Bavaria taking a sudden fancy to the Bank of England, or the King of the Cannibal Islands suddenly demanding a tribute of edible boys and girls from England and America, we may be quite certain also that the Leader of the Labour Party will rise, with a slight cough, and say:  “It would be a difficult task to apportion the blame between the various claims which...”


I hope the Government will not think just now about appointing a Poet Laureate.  I hardly think they can be altogether in the right mood.  The business just now before the country makes a very good detective story; but as a national epic it is a little depressing.  Jingo literature always weakens a nation; but even healthy patriotic literature has its proper time and occasion.  For instance, Mr. Newbolt (who has been suggested for the post) is a very fine poet; but I think his patriotic lyrics would just now rather jar upon a patriot.  We are rather too much concerned about our practical seamanship to feel quite confident that Drake will return and “drum them up the Channel as he drummed them long ago.”  On the contrary, we have an uncomfortable feeling that Drake’s ship might suddenly go to the bottom,

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