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Full text of "War-time financial problems"

"NO   PRICE  TOO THIGH"            49

different, and it might have remained so if it had
been trained by the use made of public finance along
the right line. In the early days the Labour leaders
announced that there were to be no strikes during
the war, and the property-owning classes, with their
hearts full of gratitude for the promptitude with
which Mr Lloyd George had met the early war
crisis, were ready to do anything that the country
asked from them in the matter of monetary sacrifice.
Mr Asquith's grandiloquent phrase, " No price is
too high when Honour is at stake/' might then have
been taken literally by all classes of the community
as a call to them to do their financial duty. Now it
has been largely translated into a belief that no
price is too high to exact from the Government by
those who have goods to sell to it, or work to place
at its disposal. In considering what might have
been in matters of finance we have to be very careful
to remember this evil change which has taken place
in the public spirit owing to the short-sighted financial
measures which have been taken by our rulers.

Thus, when we consider how our war finance
might have been improved, we imply all along that
the improvements suggested should have been begun
when the war was in its early stages, and when public
opinion was still ready to do its duty in finance.
The conclusion at which we arrived a month ago was
that by taxation rather than by borrowing and
inflation much more satisfactory results could have
been got out of the country. If, instead of manu-
facturing currency for the prosecution of the war,
the Government had taken money from the citizens