MAN IN THE MODERN WORLD
the native reserves of the menfolk needed for subsistence agriculture
and a balanced life, but at the other end have brought into being a
dingy, discontented, and atomized black proletariat, which, on any
standard of ultimate human values, represents a regression from
traditional tribal existence,
Let me begin with the political aspect. The favourite solution of
idealist constitution-mongers has been the immediate pooling of all
colonies under the administration of an international authority. This,
however, is in reality not only impracticable but undesirable. No
international authority which we can contemplate as possible in the
near future could be adequate to undertake the full executive re-
sponsibility demanded of an administration, and the existing colonial
powers would rightly refuse to hand over their responsibilities to such
an organization. Furthermore, colonial administration is a difficult
business, demanding a homogeneous staff with its own traditions and
accumulated experience. The handing over of administration to a
mixed international staff unsupported by strong central machinery
would in many cases cause a retrogression in the handling of native
problems, and this might well have quite serious effects in some areas.
There is also the significant fact that articulate native opinion, backed
by such bodies as the Aborigines Protection Society, is almost entirely
hostile to internationalization: they feel that this might readily be-
come a more dangerous and impersonal means of exploitation of
blacks or browns by white than the existing system. Further, some
of the more developed tropical colonies, such as the Gold Coast and
the West Indies, have in fact developed a strong loyalty to their metro-
politan country and would strongly resent any change in allegiance.
No, the detailed business of administration must for the immediate
future remain in the hands of strong and highly developed nations.
What is more, transfer of colonies from one power to another is to be
avoided wherever possible. It makes for instability, and it treats the
colonies as pawns in the political game.
Another widely mooted suggestion has been the universal adoption
of a strengthened Mandate principle. After the last war, the ex-
German colonies were transferred to other powers, not as outright
possessions, but as Mandates from the League of Nations. The
system involved the formal acceptance of the principle of trusteeship.
The Mandatory Power was to administer the mandated territory in
the interests of the native inhabitants until such time as they were
capable of self-government, just as a trustee administers a ward's