Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 99 pages of information about Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays.
to you on various pretexts, and, with even more reluctance to endure the bad speaking and bad ventilation of the Commons’ House of Parliament, so help me God.  I have very pronounced convictions on various political questions; but I will not trouble my fellow-citizens with them, since I have quite made up my mind to abandon any or all of them if requested to do so by the upper classes.  The electors are therefore charged with the entirely irresponsible duty of electing a Member; or, in other words, I ask my neighbours round about this part, who know I am not a bad chap in many ways, to do me a good turn in my business, just as I might ask them to change a sovereign.  My election will have no conceivable kind of effect on anything or anybody except myself; so I ask, as man to man, the Electors of the Southern or Wycombe Division of the County of Buckingham to accept a ride in one of my motor-cars; and poll early to please a pal—­God Save the King.”  I do not know whether you or I would be elected if we presented ourselves with an election address of that kind; but we should have had our fun and (comparatively speaking) saved our souls; and I have a strong suspicion that we should be elected or rejected on a mechanical majority like anybody else; nobody having dreamed of reading an election address any more than an advertisement of a hair restorer.

Tyranny and Head-Dress

But there is another and more subtle way in which we may miss the point; and that is, not by keeping a dead silence about it, but by being just witty enough to state it wrong.  Thus, some of the Liberal official papers have almost screwed up their courage to the sticking-point about the bestial coup d’etat in South Africa.  They have screwed up their courage to the sticking-point; and it has stuck.  It cannot get any further; because it has missed the main point.  The modern Liberals make their feeble attempts to attack the introduction of slavery into South Africa by the Dutch and the Jews, by a very typical evasion of the vital fact.  The vital fact is simply slavery.  Most of these Dutchmen have always felt like slave-owners.  Most of these Jews have always felt like slaves.  Now that they are on top, they have a particular and curious kind of impudence, which is only known among slaves.  But the Liberal journalists will do their best to suggest that the South African wrong consisted in what they call Martial Law.  That is, that there is something specially wicked about men doing an act of cruelty in khaki or in vermilion, but not if it is done in dark blue with pewter buttons.  The tyrant who wears a busby or a forage cap is abominable; the tyrant who wears a horsehair wig is excusable.  To be judged by soldiers is hell; but to be judged by lawyers is paradise.

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