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It is now some 122 years since Kant wrote the essay, 
Zum ewigen Frieden. Many things have happened since 
then, although the Peace to which he looked forward 
with a doubtful hope has not been among them. But 
many things have happened which the great critical phil- 
osopher, and no less critical spectator of human events, 
would have seen with interest. To Kant the quest of an 
enduring peace presented itself as an intrinsic human 
duty, rather than as a promising enterprise. Yet through 
all his analysis of its premises and of the terms on which 
it may be realised there runs a tenacious persuasion that, 
in .the end, the regime of peace at large will be installed. 
Not as a deliberate achievement of human wisdom, so 
much as a work of Nature the Designer of things No- 
tura daedala rerum. 

To any attentive reader of Kant's memorable essay it 
will be apparent that the title of -the following inquiry 
On the nature of peace and the terms of its perpetua- 
tion is a descriptive translation of the caption under 
which he wrote. That such should be the case will not, 
it is hoped, be accounted either an unseemly presumption 
or an undue inclination to work under a oorrowed light. 
The aim and compass of any disinterested inquiry in 
these premises is still the same as it was in Kant's time ; 
such, indeed, as he in great part made it, viz., a sys- 
tematic knowledge of things as they are. Nor is the 
light of Kant's leading to be dispensed with as touches 


viii Preface 

the ways "and means of systematic knowledge, wherever 
the human realities are in question. 

Meantime, many things have also changed since the 
date of Kant's essay. Among other changes are those 
that affect the direction of inquiry and the terms of sys- 
tematic formulation. Natura daedala rerum is no longer 
allowed to go on her own recognizances, without divulg- 
ing the ways and means of her workmanship. And it is 
such a line of extension that is here attempted, into a 
field of inquiry which in Kant's time still lay over the 
horizon of the future. 

The quest of perpetual peace at large is no less a para- 
mount and intrinsic human duty today than it was, nor 
is it at all certain that its final accomplishment is nearer. 
But the question of its pursuit and of the conditions to 
be met in seeking this goal lies in a different shape today ; 
and it is this question that concerns the inquiry which is 
here undertaken, what are the terms on which peace 
at large may hopefully be installed and maintained? 
What, if anything, is there in the present situation that 
visibly makes for a realisation of these necessary terms 
within the calculable future? And what are the conse- 
quences presumably due to follow in the nearer future 
from the installation of such a peace at large ? And the 
answer to these questions is here sought not in terms of 
what ought dutifully to be done toward the desired con- 
summation, but rather in terms of those known factors 
of human behavior that can be shown by analysis of ex- 
perience to control the conduct of nations in conjunctures 
of this kind. 

February 1917 




The inquiry is not concerned with the intrinsic merits 
of peace or war, 2; But with the nature, causes and 
consequences of the preconceptions favoring peace or 
wa r A 3 ; A breach of the peace is an act of the govern- 
ment, or State, 3 ;- Patriotism is indispensable to fur- 
therance of warlike enterprise, 4; ^All the peoples of 
Christendom are sufficiently patriotic, 6; Peace es- 
tablished by the State, an armstice the State is ^an 
instrumentality for making peace, not for perpetuating 
it ? 7; The governmental establishments and their 
powers in all the Christian nations are derived from 
the feudal establishments of the Middle Ages, 9; Still 
retain the right of coercively controlling the actions of 
their citizens, n; Contrast of Icelandic Commonwealth, 
12; The statecraft of the past half century has been 
one of competitive preparedness, 14; Prussianised Ger- 
many has forced the pace in this competitive prepared- 
ness, 20 ; An avowedly predatory enterprise no longer 
meets with approval, 21; When a warlike enterprise 
has been entered upon, it will have the support of popu- 
lar sentiment even if it is an aggressive war, 22; The 
moral indignation of both parties to the quarrel is to 
be taken for granted, 23; The spiritual f orces^ of any 
Christian nation may be mobilised for war by either of 
two pleas: (i) The preservation or furtherance of the 
community's material interests, real or fancied, and (2) 
vindication of the National Honour; as perhaps also per- 
petuation of the national "Culture," 23. 


The nature of Patriotism, 31; Is a spirit of Emu- 
lation, 33; Must seem moral, if only to a biased popu- 

X Contents 

lace^ 33; The common man is sufficiently patriotic 
but is hampered with a sense of right and honest dealing, 
38 ; i- Patriotism is at cross purposes with modern life, 
38; Is an hereditary trait, 41; Variety of racial 
stocks in Europe, 43 ; Patriotism a ubiquitous trait, 43 ; 
Patriotism disserviceable, yet men hold to it, 46 ; 
Cultural evolution of Europeans, 48; Growth of a 
sense of group soliditary, 49; Material interests of 
group falling into abeyance as class divisions have grown 
up, until prestige remains virtually the sole community 
interest, 51 ; Based upon warlike prowess, physical 
magnitude and pecuniary traffic of country, 54 ; Inter- 
ests of the master class are at cross purposes with the 
fortunes of the common man, 57; Value of superiors 
is^a "prestige value," 57; The material benefits which 
this ruling class contribute are: defense against aggres- 
sion, and promotion of the community's material gain, 
60; The common defense is a remedy for evils due 
to the patriotic spirit, 61 ; The common defense the 
usual blind behind which events are put in train for 
eventual hostilities, 62; All the nations of warring 
Europe convinced that they are fighting a defensive 
war, 62 ; Which usually takes the form of a defense 
of the National Honour, 63 ; Material welfare is of 
interest to the Dynastic statesman only as it conduces 
to political success, 64; The policy of national eco- 
nomic ^self-sufficiency, 67 ; The chief material use of 
patriotism is its use to a limited number of persons in 
their quest of private gain, 67; And has the effect of 
dividing the nations on lines of rivalry, 76. 



The patriotic spirit of modern peoples is the abiding 
source of contention among nations, 77 ; Hence any 
calculus of the Chances of Peace will be a reckoning 
of forces which may be counted on to keep a patriotic 
nation in .an unstable equilibrium of peace, 78; The 
question of peace and war at large is a question of peace 
and war among the Powers, which are of two contrasted 
kinds : those which may safely be counted on spontane- 
ously to take the offensive and those which will fight 
on provocation, 79; War not a question of equity 
but of opportunity, 81 ; The^mperial^desi^ns of Q$jr- 

Contents xi 

men and popular sentiment in a Dynastic State, 84; 
Information, persuasion and reflection will not subdue 
national animosities and jealousies; Peoples of Europe 
are racially homogeneous along lines of- climatic lati- 
tude, 88; But loyalty is a matter of habituation, 89; 
Derivation and current state of German nationalism 94; 
Contrasted with the animus of the citizens of a com- 
monwealth, 103 ; A neutral peace-compact may be prac- 
ticable in the absence of Germany and Japan, but it has 
no chance in their presence, 106; The national life of 
Germany : the Intellectuals, 108 ; Summary of chapter, 



Submission to the Imperial Power one of the conditions 
precedent to a peaceful settlement, 118; Character 
of the projected tutelage, 118; Life under the Pax 
Germanica contrasted with the Ottoman and Russian 
rule, 124; China and biological and cultural success, 
I30 . Difficulty of non-resistant subjection is of a psy- 
chological order, 131 ; Patriotism of the bellicose kind 
is of the nature of habit, 134; And men may divest 
themselves of it, 140 ; A decay of the bellicose nation- 
al spirit must be of the negative order, the disuse of the 
discipline out of which it has arisen, 142 ; Submission 
to Imperial authorities necessitates abeyance of national 
pride among the other peoples, 144 ; Pecuniary merits 
of the projected Imperial dominion, 145; Pecuniary 
class distinctions in the commonwealths and the pe- 
cuniary burden on the common man, 150; Material 
conditions of life for the common man under the modern 
rule of big business, 156; The competitive regime, 
"what the traffic will bear," and the life and labor of the 
common man, 158; Industrial sabotage by business- 
men> j6s ; Contrasted with the Imperial usufruct and 
its material advantages to the common man, 174- 



Personal liberty, not creature comforts, the ulterior 
springs of action of the common man of the democratic 
nations, 178; No change of spiritual state to be looked 
for in the life-time of the oncoming generation, 185; 
The Dynastic spirit among the peoples of the Empire 

xii Contents 

will, under the discipline of modern economic conditions, 
fall into decay, 187; Contrast of class divisions in 
Germany and England, 192 ; ~ National establishments 
are dependent for their continuance upon preparation 
for hostilities, 196; The time required for the people 
of the Dynastic States to unlearn their preconceptions 
will be longer than the interval required for a new on- 
set, 197; There can be no neutral course between peace 
by unconditional surrender and submission or peace by 
the elimination of Imperial Germany and Japan, 202 ; 
Peace by submission not practicable for the modern 
nations, 203; Neutralisation of citizenship, 205; 
Spontaneous move in that direction not to be looked for, 
213; Its chances of success, 219; The course of 
events in America, 221. 



A league of neutrals, its outline, 233 ; Need of security 
from aggression of Imperial Germany, 234; Inclusion 
of the Imperial States in the league, 237; Necessity of 
elimination of Imperial military clique, 239; Necessity 
of intermeddling in internal affairs of Germany even 
if not acceptable to the German people, 240 ; Proba- 
bility of pacific nations taking measures to insure peace, 
244-298; The British gentleman and his control of 
the English government, 244; The shifting of control 
out of the hands of the gentleman into those of the 
underbred common man, 251; The war situation and 
its probable effect on popular habits of thought in Eng- 
land, 252; The course of such events and their bear- 
ing on the chances of a workable pacific league. 255; 

Conditions precedent to a successful pacific league 
of neutrals, 258 ; Colonial possessions, 259; Neu- 
tralisation of trade relations, 263 ; Futility of economic 
boycott, 266; The terms of settlement, 269; The ef- 
fect of the war and the chances of the British people 
being able to meet the exigencies of peace, 273 ; - Sum- 
mary of ^ the terms of settlement, 280; Constitutional 
monarchies and the British gentlemanly government, 
281; The American national establishment, a gov- 
ernment by businessmen, and its economic policy, 292; 

America and the league, 294. 

Contents xiii 



The different conceptions of peace, 299; Psychological 
effects of the war, 303; The handicraft system and 
the machine industry, and their psychological effect on po- 
litical preconceptions, 296; The machine technology 
and 'the~ decay of patriotic loyalty, 310; Summary, 
313; Ownership and the * right J of contract, 315; 
Standardised under handicraft system, 3ip; Owner- 
ship and the machine industry, 320; Business control 
and sabotage, 3122 ; Governments of pacific nations 
controlled by privileged classes, 326; Effect of peace 
on the economic situation, 328; Economic aspects of 
a regime of peace, especially as related to the develop- 
ment of classes, 330; The analogy of the Victorian 
Peace, 344; The case of the American Farmer, 348; 
The leisure class, 350; The rising standard of living, 
354 ; Culture, 355 ; The eventual cleavage of classes, 
those who own and those who do noj, 360 ; Condition- 
ed by peace at large, 366 ; Necessary conditions of a 
lasting peace, 367. 







To many thoughtful men ripe in worldly wisdom it is 
known of a verity that war belongs indefeasibly in the 
Order of Nature. Contention, with manslaughter, is in- 
dispensable in human intercourse, at the same time that 
it conduces to the increase and diffusion of the manly 
virtues. So likewise, the unspoiled youth of the race, in 
the period of adolescence and aspiring manhood, also com- 
monly share this gift of insight and back it with a gen- 
erous commendation of all the martial qualities; and 
women of nubile age and no undue maturity gladly meet 
them half way. 

On the other hand, the mothers of the people are com- 
monly unable to see the use of it all. It seems a waste 
of dear-bought human life, with a large sum of nothing 
to show for it. So also many men of an elderly turn, 
prematurely or otherwise, are ready to lend their coun- 
tenance to the like disparaging appraisal ; it may be that 
the spirit of prowess in them runs at too low a tension, or 
they may have outlived the more vivid appreciation of 
the spiritual values involved. There are many, also, with 


2 On the Nature of Peace 

a turn for exhortation, who find employment for their 
best faculties in attesting the well-known atrocities and 
futility of war. 

Indeed, not infrequently such advocates of peace will 
devote their otherwise idle powers to this work of ex- 
hortation without stipend or subsidy. And they uniformly 
make good their contention that the currently accepted 
conception of the nature of war General Sherman's for- 
mula is substantially correct. All the while it is to be 
admitted that all this axiomatic exhortation has no visible 
effect on the course of events or on the popular temper 
touching warlike enterprise. Indeed, no equal volume of 
speech can be more incontrovertible or less convincing 
than the utterances of the peace advocates, whether sub- 
sidised or not. "War is Bloodier than Peace." This 
would doubtless be conceded without argument, but also 
without prejudice. Hitherto the pacifists' quest of a 
basis for enduring peace, it must be admitted, hasjamight 
home nothing tangible with the qualification, of course, 
that the subsidised pacifists have come in for the subsidy 
So that, after searching the recesses of their imagination, 
able-bodied pacifists whose loquacity has never been at 
fault hitherto have been brought to ask:- "What Shall 
We Say?" 

Under these circumstances it will not be out of place 
to inquire into the nature of this peace about which swings 
this wide orbit of opinion and argument. At the most, 
such an inquiry can be no more gratuitous and no more 
nugatory than the controversies that provoke it. TJi 
intrinsic merits qf peace at large, as against those of war- 
liB^enterprise, it should be said, do not here come in 
question. That question lies in the domain of precon- 

Introductory 3 

ceived opinion, so that for the purposes of this inquiry it 
will have no significance except as a matter to be in- 
quired into ; the main point of the inquiry being the na- 
ture, causes and consequences of such a preconception 
favoring peace, and the circumstances that make for a 
contrary preconception in favor of war. 

By and large, any breach of the peace in modern times 
is an official act and can be taken only on initiative of the 
governmental establishment, the State. The national au- 
thorities may, of course, be driven to take such a step by 
pressure of warlike popular sentiment. Such, e. g., is 
presumed to have been the case in the United States' 
attack on Spain during the McKinley administration; 
but the more that comes to light of the intimate history 
of that episode, the more evident does it become that the 
popular war sentiment to which the administration yielded 
had been somewhat sedulously "mobilised" with a view 
to such yielding and such a breach. So also in the case 
of the Boer war, the move was made under sanction of 
a popular war spirit, which, again, did not come to a head 
without shrewd surveillance and direction. And so again 
in the current European war, in the case, e. g., of Ger- 
many, where the initiative was taken, the State plainly 
had the full support of popular sentiment, and may even 
be said to have precipitated the war in response to this 
urgent popular aspiration ; and here again it is a matter 
of notoriety that the popular sentiment had long been 
sedulously nursed and "mobilised" to that effect, sp that 
the populace was assiduously kept in spiritual readiness 
for such an event. The like is less evident as regards the 
United Kingdom, and perhaps also as regards the other 

4 On the Nature of Peace 

And such appears to have been the common run of the 
facts as regards all the greater wars of the last one hun- 
dred years, what may be called the "public" wars of this 
modern era, as contrasted with the "private" or adminis- 
trative wars which have been carried on in a corner by 
one and another of the Great Powers against hapless bar- 
barians, from time to time, in the course of administra- 
tive routine. 

It is also evident from the run of the facts as exempli- 
fied in these modern wars that while any breach of the 
peace takes place only on the initiative and at the discre- 
tion of the government, or State, 1 it is always requisite 
in furtherance of such warlike enterprise to cherish and 
eventually to mobilise popular sentiment in support of 
any warlike move. Due fomentation of a warlike animus 
is indispensable to the procuring and maintenance of a 
suitable equipment with which eventually to break the 
peace, as well as to ensure a diligent prosecution of such 
enterprise when once it has been undertaken. Such a 
spirit of militant patriotism as may serviceably be mobil- 
ised in support of warlike enterprise has accordingly been 
a condition precedent to any people's entry into the mod- 
ern Concert of Nations. This Concert of Nations is a 
Concert of Powers, and it is only as a Power that any 
nation plays its part in the concert, all the While that "pow- 
er" here means eventual warlike force. 

Such a people as the Chinese, e. g., not pervaded with 
an adequate patriotic spirit, comes into the Concert of 
Nations not as a Power but as a bone of contention. Not 
that the Chinese fall short in any of the qualities that con- 

*A modern nation constitutes a State only in respect of or with 
ulterior bearing on the question of international peace or war. 

Introductory 5 

duce to efficiency and welfare in time of peace, but they 
appear, in effect, to lack that certain "solidarity of prow- 
ess" by virtue of which they should choose to be (collec- 
tively) formidable rather than (individually) fortunate 
and upright ; and the modern civilised nations are not in a 
position, nor in a frame of mind, to tolerate a neighbor 
whose only claim on their consideration falls under the 
category of peace on earth and good-will among men. 
China appears hitherto not to have been a serviceable 
people for warlike ends, except in so far as the resources 
of that country have been taken over and converted to 
warlike uses by some alien power working to its own 
ends. Such have been the several alien dynasties that 
have seized upon that country from time to time and 
have achieved dominion by usufruct of its unwarlike 
forces. Such has been the nature of the Manchu empire 
of the recent past, and such is the evident purpose of the 
prospective Japanese usufruct of the same country and 
its populace. Meantime the Chinese people appear to 
be incorrigibly peaceable, being scarcely willing to fight 
in any concerted fashion even when driven into a corner 
by unprovoked aggression, as in the present juncture. 
Such a people is very exceptional. Among civilised na- 
tions there are, broadly speaking, none of that temper, 
with the sole exception of the Chinese, if the Chinese 
are properly to be spoken of as a nation. 

Modern warfare makes such large and direct use of 
the industrial arts, and depends for its successful prose- 
cution so largely on a voluminous and unremitting supply 
of civilian services and wrought goods, that any inoffen- 
sive and industrious people, such as the Chinese, could 
doubtless now be turned to good account by any war- 
like power that might have the disposal of their working 

6 On the Nature of Peace 

forces. To make their industrial efficiency count in this 
way toward warlike enterprise and imperial dominion, the 
usufruct of any such inoffensive and unpatriotic populace 
would have to fall into the hands of an alien govern- 
mental establishment. And no alien government resting 
on the support of a home population trained in the habits 
of democracy or given over to ideals of common honesty 
in national concerns could hopefully undertake the en- 
terprise. This work of empire-building out of unwarlike 
materials could apparently be carried out only by some 
alien power hampered by no reserve of scruple, and 
backed by a servile populace of its own, inbued with an 
impeccable loyalty to its masters and with a suitably belli- 
cose temper, as, e. g., Imperial Japan or Imperial Ger- 

However, for the commonplace national enterprise the 
common run will do very well. Any populace imbued 
with a reasonable measure of patriotism will serve as 
ways and means to warlike enterprise under competent 
management, even if it is not habitually prone to a belli- 
cose temper. Rightly managed, ordinary patriotic sen- 
timent may readily be mobilised for warlike adventure 
by any reasonably adroit and single-minded body of states- 
men, of which there i^bundant illustration. All the 
Pf^^^jaL Christendom are possessed of a sufficiently alert 
sense of ^natjpnali.tyj^Scf %^tfa3jftlpn^ arid" Current usage 
afl'the national governments of Christendom are warlike 
establishments, at least in the defensive sense; and the" 
distinction between the defensive and the offensive in 
international intrigue is a technical matter that offers no 
great difficulty. None of these nations is of such an 
incorrigibly peaceable temper that they can be counted on 
to keep the peace consistently in the ordinary course of 


Peace established by the State, or resting in the discre- 
tion of the State, is necessarily of the nature of an armis- 
tice, in effect terminable at will and on short notice. It is 
maintained only on conditions, stipulated by express con- 
vention or established by custom, and there is always the 
reservation, tacit or explicit, that recourse will be had to 
arms in case the "national interests" or the punctilios of 
international etiquette are traversed by the act or defec- 
tion of any rival government or its subjects. The more 
nationally-minded the government or its subject populace, 
the readier the response to the call of any such oppor- 
tunity for an unfolding of prowess. The most peaceable 
governmental policy of which Christendom has experience 
is a policy of "watchful waiting," with a jealous eye to 
the emergence of any occasion for national resentment; 
and the most irretrievably shameful dereliction of duty 
on the part of any civilised government would be its 
eventual insensibility to the appeal of a "just war/' Un- 
der any governmental auspices, as the modern world 
knows governments, the keeping of the peace comes at 
its best under the precept, "Speak softly and carry a big 
stick." But the case for peace is more precarious than 
the wording of the aphorism would indicate, in as much 
as in practical fact the "big stick" is an obstacle to soft 
speech. Evidently, in the light of recent history, if the 
peace is to be kept it will have to come about irrespec- 
tive of governmental management, in spite of the State 
rather than by its good offices. At the best, the State, or 
the government, is an instrumentality for making peace, 
not for perpetuating it. 

Anyone who is interested in the nature and derivation 
of governmental institutions and establishments in Eu- 

8 On the Nature of Peace 

rope, in any but the formal respect, should be able to sat- 
isfy his curiosity by looking over the shoulders of the 
professed students of Political Science. Quite properly 
and profitably that branch of scholarship is occupied with 
the authentic pedigree of these institutions, and with the 
documentary instruments in the case ; since Political Sci- 
ence is, after all, a branch of theoretical jurisprudence and 
is concerned about a formally competent analysis of the 
recorded legal powers. The material circumstances from 
which these institutions once took their beginning, and 
the exigencies which have governed the rate and direc- 
tion of their later growth and mutation, as well as the 
de facto bearing of the institutional scheme on the ma- 
terial welfare or the cultural fortunes of the given com- 
munity, while all these matters of fact may be germane 
to the speculations of Political Theory, they are not in- 
trinsic to its premises, to the logical sequence of its in- 
quiry, or to its theoretical findings. The like is also true, 
of course, as regards that system of habits of thought, 
that current frame of mind, in which any given institu- 
tional scheme necessarily is grounded, and without the 
continued support of which any given scheme of govern- 
mental institutions or policy would become nugatory and 
so would pass into the province of legal fiction. All these 
are not idle matters in the purview of the student of 
Political Science, but they remain after all substantially 
extraneous to the structure of political theory; and in 
so far as matters of this class are to be brought into the 
case at all, the specialists in the field can not fairly be 
expected to contribute anything beyond an occasional 
obiter dictum. There can be no discourteous presump- 
tion, therefore, in accepting the general theorems of cur- 
rent political theory without prejudice, and looking past 

Introductory 9 

the received theoretical formulations for a view of the 
substantial grounds on which the governmental establish- 
ments have grown into shape, and the circumstances, 
material and spiritual, that surround their continued work- 
ing and effect. 

By lineal descent the governmental establishments and 
the powers with which they are vested, in all the Chris- 
tian nations, are derived from the feudal establishments 
of the Middle Ages ; which, in turn, are of a predatory 
origin and of an irresponsible character. 1 In nearly all 
instances, but more particularly among the nations that 
are accounted characteristically modern, the existing es- 
tablishments have been greatly altered from the mediaeval 
pattern, by concessive adaptation to later exigencies or by 
a more or less revolutionary innovation. The degree of 
their modernity is (conventionally) measured, roughly, 
by the degree in which they have departed from the me- 
diaeval pattern. Wherever the unavoidable concessions 
have been shrewdly made with a view to conserving 
the autonomy and irresponsibility of the governmental 
establishment, or the "State," and where the state of 
national sentiment has been led to favor this work of 
conservation, as, e. g., in the case of Austria, Spain or 
Prussia, there the modern outcome has teen what may 
be called a Dynastic State. Where, on the other hand, 
the run of national sentiment has departed notably from 
the ancient holding-ground of loyal abnegation, and has 
enforced a measure of revolutionary innovation, as in the 
case of France or of the English-speaking peoples, there 
the modern outcome has been an (ostensibly) democratic 

1 The partial and dubious exception of the Scandinavian coun- 
tries or of Switzerland need raise no question on this head. 

10 On the Nature of Peace 

commonwealth of ungraded citizens. But the contrast 
so indicated is a contrast of divergent variants rather than 
of opposites. These two type-forms may be taken as the 
extreme and inclusive limits of variation among the gov- 
ernmental establishments with which the modern world 
is furnished. 1 

The effectual difference between these two theoretically 
contrasted types of governmental establishments is doubt- 
less grave enough, and for many purposes it is consequen- 
tial, but it is after all not of such a nature as need greatly, 
detain the argument at this point. The two differ less, 
in effect, in that range of their functioning which comes 
in question here than in their bearing on the community's 
fortunes apart from questions of war and peace. In all 
cases there stand over in this bearing certain primary 
characteristics of the ancient regime, which all these 
modem establishments have in common, though not all 
in an equal degree of preservation and effectiveness. 
They are, e. g., all vested with certain attributes of "sov- 
ereignty." In all cases the citizen still proves on closer 
attention to be in some measure a "subject" of the State, 
in that he is invariably conceived to owe a "duty" to the 
constituted authorities in one respect and another. All 
civilised governments take cognizance of Treason, Sedi- 
tion, and the like; and all good citizens are not only 
content but profoundly insistent on the clear duty of the 
citizen on this head. The bias of loyalty is not a matter 
on which argument is tolerated. By virtue of this bias 
of loyalty, or "civic duty" which still has much of the 
color of feudal allegiance the governmental establish- 

Introductory 11 

ment is within its rights in coercively controlling and 
directing the actions of the citizen, or subject, in those 
respects that so lie within his duty ; as also in authorita- 
tively turning his abilities to account for the purposes 
that so lie within the governmental discretion, as, e. g., 
the Common Defense. 

These rights and powers still remain to the govern- 
mental establishment even at the widest democratic de- 
parture from that ancient pattern of masterful tutelage 
.and usufruct that marked the old-fashioned patrimonial 
State, and that still marks the better preserved ones 
among its modern derivitives. And so intrinsic to these 
governmental establishments are these discretionary pow- 
ers, and by so unfailing a popular bias are they still 
accounted a matter of course and of axiomatic necessity, 
that they have invariably been retained also among the 
attributes of those democratic governments that trace 
their origin to a revolutionary break with the old order. 

To many, all this will seem a pedantic taking note of 
commonplaces, as if it were worth while remarking 
that the existing governments are vested with the indis- 
pensable attributes of government. Yet history records 
an instance at variance with "this axiomatic rule, a rule 
which is held to be an unavoidable deliverance of com- 
mon sense. And it is by no means an altogether unique 
instance. It may serve to show that these characteristic 
and unimpeachable powers that invest all current govern- 
mental establishments are, after all, to be rated as the 
marks of a particular species of governments, and not 
characteristics of the genus of governmental establish- 
ments at large. These powers answer to an acquired bias, 
not to an underlying trait of human nature ; a matter of 
habit, not of heredity. 

12 On the Nature of Peace 

Such an historical instance is the so-called Republic, or 
Commonwealth, of Iceland tenth to thirteenth centu- 
ries. Its case is looked on by students of history as a 
spectacular anomaly, because it admitted none of these 
primary powers of government in its constituted authori- 
ties. And yet, for contrast with these matter-of-course 
preconceptions of these students of history, it is well to 
note that in the deliberations of those ancients who in- 
stalled the Republic for the management of their joint 
concerns, any inclusion of such powers in its competency 
appears never to have been contemplated, not even to the 
extent of its being rejected. This singularity as it would 
be rated by modern statesmen and students was in no 
degree a new departure in state-making on the part of 
the founders of the Republic. They had no knowledge 
of such powers, duties and accountabilities, except as 
unwholesome features of a novel and alien scheme of 
irresponsible oppression that was sought to be imposed on 
them by Harald Fairhair, and which they incontinently 
made it their chief and immediate business to evade. 
They also set up no joint or collective establishment with 
powers for the Common Defense, nor does it appear that 
such a notion had occurred to them. 

In the history of its installation there is no hint that 
the men who set up this Icelandic Commonwealth had 
any sense of the need, or even of the feasibility, of such 
a coercive government as would be involved in concerted 
preparation for the common defense. Subjection to per- 
sonal rule, or to official rule in any degree of attenuation, 
was not comprised in their traditional experience of citi- 
zenship ; and it was necessarily out of the elements com- 
prised in this traditional experience that the new struc- 
ture would have to be built up. The new commonwealth 

Introductory 13 

was necessarily erected on the premises afforded by the 
received scheme of use and wont; and this received 
scheme had come down out of pre-feudal conditions, 
without having passed under the discipline of that regime 
of coercion which the feudal system had imposed on the 
rest of Europe, and so had established as an "immemo- 
rial usage" and a "second nature" among the popula- 
tions of Christendom. The resulting character of the 
Icelandic Commonwealth is sufficiently striking when con- 
trasted with the case of the English commonwealth of 
the seventeenth century, or the later French and Amer- 
ican republics. These, all and several, came out of a 
protracted experience in feudalistic state-making and 
State policy; and the common defense frequently on 
the offensive with its necessary coercive machinery and 
its submissive loyalty, consequently would take the cen- 
tral place in the resulting civic structure. 

To close the tale of the Icelandic commonwealth it may 
be added that their republic of insubordinate citizens pres- 
ently fell into default, systematic misuse, under the dis- 
orders brought on by an accumulation of wealth, and 
that it died of legal fiction and constitutional formalities 
after some experience at the hands of able and ambitious 
statesmen in contact with an alien government drawn on 
the coercive plan. The day vessel failed to make good 
among the iron pots, and so proved its unfitness to sur- 
vive in the world of Christian nations, very much as 
the Chinese are today at the mercy of the defensive ra- 
pacity of the Powers. 

And the mercy that we gave them 
Was to sink them in the sea, 
Down on the coast of High Barbaric, 

14 On the Nature of Peace 

No doubt, it will be accepted as an axiomatic certainty 
that the establishment of a commonwealth after the fash- 
ion of the Icelandic Republic, without coercive authority 
or provision for the common defense, and without a sense 
of subordination or collective responsibility among its 
citizens, would be out of all question under existing cir- 
cumstances of politics and international trade. Nor 
would such a commonwealth be workable on the scale 
and at the pace imposed by modern industrial and com- 
mercial conditions, even apart from international jealousy 
and ambitions, provided the sacred rights of ownership 
were to be maintained in something like their current 
shape. And yet something of a drift of popular senti- 
ment, and indeed something of deliberate endeavour, set- 
ting in the direction of such a harmless and helpless 
national organisation is always visible in Western Europe, 
throughout modern times ; particularly through the eigh- 
teenth and the early half of the nineteenth centuries; 
and more particularly among the English-speaking peo- 
ples, and with a difference, among the French. The 
Dutch and the Scandinavian countries answer more doubt- 
fully to the same characterisation. 

The movement in question is known to history as the 
Liberal, Rationalistic, Humanitarian, or Individualistic 
departure. Its ideal, when formulated, is spoken of as 
the System of Natural Rights ; and its goal in the way 
of a national establishment has been well characterised 
by its critics as the Police State, or the Night-Watchman 
State. The gains made in this direction, or perhaps bet- 
ter^ the inroads of this animus in national ideals, are 
plainly to be set down as a shift in the direction of peace 
and amity; but it is also plain that the shift of ground 
so initiated by this strain of sentiment has never reached 

Introductory 15 

a conclusion and never has taken effect in anything like 
an effectual working arrangement. Its practical con- 
sequences have been of the nature of abatement and de- 
fection in the pursuit of national ambitions and dynastic 
enterprise, rather than a creative work of installing any 
institutional furniture suitable to its own ends. It has 
in effect gone no farther than what would be called an 
incipient correction of abuses. The highest rise, as well 
as the decline, of this movement lie within the nineteenth 

In point of time, the decay of this amiable conceit of 
laissez-faire in national policy coincides with the period 
of great advance in the technology of transport and com- 
munication in the nineteenth century. Perhaps, on a larger 
outlook, it should rather be said that the run of national 
ambitions and animosities had, in the eighteenth and 
nineteenth centuries, suffered a degree of decay through 
the diffusion of this sentimental predilection for Natural 
Liberty, and that this decline of the manlier aspirations 
was then arrested and corrected by help of these improve- 
ments in the technological situation; which enabled a 
closer and more coercive control to be exercised over 
larger areas, and at the same time enabled a more mas- 
sive aggregate of warlike force to strike more effectively 
at a greater distance. This whole episode of the rise and 
decline of laissez-faire in modem history is perhaps best 
to be conceived as a transient weakening of nationalism, 
by neglect; rather than anything like the growth of a 
new and more humane ideal of national intercourse. Such 
would be the appraisal to be had at the hands of those 
who speak for a strenuous national life and for the ar- 
bitrament of sportsmanlike contention in human affairs. 
And the latterday growth of more militant aspirations, 

16 On the Nature of Peace 

together with the more settled and sedulous attention to 
a development of control and of formidable armaments, 
such as followed on through the latter half of the nine- 
teenth century, would then be rated as a resumption of 
those older aims and ideals that had been falling some- 
what into abeyance in the slack-water days of Liberalism. 
There is much to be said for this latter view; and, 
indeed, much has been said for it, particularly by the 
spokesmen of imperialist politics. This bias of Natural 
Liberty has been associated in history with the English- 
speaking peoples, more intimately and more extensively 
than with any other. Not that this amiable conceit is in 
any peculiar degree a race characteristic of this group 
of peoples ; nor even that the history of its rise and de- 
cline runs wholly within the linguistic frontiers indicated 
by this characterisation. The French and the Dutch have 
borne their share, and at an earlier day Italian sentiment 
and speculation lent its impulsion to the same genial drift 
of faith and aspiration. But, by historical accident, its 
center of gravity and of diffusion has lain with the Eng- 
lish-speaking communities during the period when this 
bias made history and left its impress on the institu- 
tional scheme of the Western civilisation. By grace of 
what may, for the present purpose, be called historical 
accident, it happens that the interval of history during 
which the bias of Natural Liberty made visible headway 
was also a period during which these English-speaking 
peoples, among whom its effects are chiefly visible, were 
relatively secure from international disturbance, by force 
of inaccessibility. Little strain was put upon their sense 
of national solidarity or national prowess ; so little, in- 
deed, that there was some danger of their patriotic ani- 
mosity falling into decay by disuse; and then they were 

Introductory 17 

also busy with other things. Peaceable intercourse, it is 
true, was relatively easy, active and far-reaching eigh- 
teenth and nineteenth centuries as compared with what 
had been the case before that time; but warlike inter- 
course on such a scale as would constitute a substantial 
menace to any large nation was nearly out of the ques- 
tion, so far as regards the English-speaking peoples. The 
available means of aggression, as touches the case of 
these particular communities, were visibly and consciously 
inadequate as compared with the means of defense. The 
means of internal or intra-national control or coercion 
were also less well provided by the state of the arts cur- 
rent at that time than the means of peaceable intercourse. 
These means of transport and communication were, at 
that stage of their development, less well suited for the 
purposes of far-reaching warlike strategy and the exercise 
of surveillance and coercion over large spaces than for 
the purposes of peaceable traffic. 

But the continued improvement in the means of com- 
munication during the nineteenth century presently up- 
set that situation, and so presently began to neutralise 
the geographical quarantine which had hedged about these 
communities that were inclined to let well enough alone. 
The increasing speed and accuracy of movement in ship- 
ping, due to the successful introduction of steam, as well 
as the concomitant increasing size of the units of equip- 
ment, all runs to this effect and presently sets at naught 
the peace barriers of sea and weather. So also the de- 
velopment of railways and their increasing availability for 
strategic uses, together with the far-reaching coordination 
of movement made possible by their means and by the 
telegraph ; all of which is further facilitated by the in- 
creasing mass and density of population. Improvements 

18 On the Nature of Peace 

in the technology of arms and armament worked to the 
like effect, of setting the peace of any community on an 
increasingly precarious footing, through the advantage 
which this new technology gave to a ready equipment and 
a rapid mobilisation. The new state of the industrial 
arts serviceable for warlike enterprise put an increasingly 
heavy premium on readiness for offense or defense, but 
more particularly it all worked increasingly to the ad- 
vantage of the offensive. It put the Fabian strategy out 
of date, and led to the doctrine of a defensive offense. 

Gradually it came true, with the continued advance in 
those industrial arts that lend themselves to strategic 
uses, and it came also to be realised, that no corner of 
the earth was any longer secure by mere favor of dis- 
tance and natural difficulty, from eventual aggression at 
th$ hands of any provident and adventurous assailant, 
even by help of a modicum of defensive precaution. The 
fear of aggression then came definitively to take the place 
of international good-will and became the chief motive 
in public policy, so fast and so far as the state of the 
industrial arts continued to incline the balance of advan- 
tage to the side of the aggressor. All of which served 
greatly to strengthen the hands of those statesmen who, 
by interest or temperament, were inclined to imperialistic 
enterprise. Since that period all armament has conven- 
tionally been accounted defensive, and all statesmen have 
professed that the common defense is their chief con- 
cern. Professedly all armament has been designed to 
keep the peace; so much of a shadow of the peaceable 
bias there still stands over. 

Throughout this latest phase of modern civilisation the 
avowed fear of aggression has served as apology, pos- 
sibly as provocation in fact, to national armaments ; and 

Introductory 19 

throughout the same period any analysis of the situation 
will finally run the chain of fear back to Prussia as, the, 
putative or actual, center of disturbance and apprehension. 
No doubt, Prussian armament has taken the lead and 
forced the pace among the nations of Christendom; but 
the Prussian policy, too, has been diligently covered with 
the same decorous plea of needful provision for the com- 
mon defense and an unremitting solicitude for interna- 
tional peace, to which has been added the canny after- 
thought of the "defensive offense." 

It is characteristic of this era of armed peace that in 
all these extensive preparations for breaking the peace 
any formal avowal of other than a defensive purpose 
has at all times been avoided as an insufferable breach of 
diplomatic decorum. It is likewise characteristic of the 
same era that armaments have unremittingly been in- 
creased, beyond anything previously known; and that all 
men have known all the while that the inevitable out- 
come of this avowedly defensive armament must eventu- 
ally be war on an unprecedented scale and of unexampled 
ferocity. It would be neither charitable nor otherwise 
to the point to call attention to the reflection which this 
state of the case throws on the collective sagacity or the 
good faith of the statesmen who have had the management 
of affairs. It is not practicable to imagine how such an 
outcome as the present could have been brought about 
by any degree of stupidity or incapacity alone, nor is it 
easier to find evidence that the utmost sagacity of the 
statecraft engaged has had the slightest mitigating effect 
on the evil consummation to which the whole case has 
been brought. It has long been a commonplace among 
observers of public events that these professedly defen- 
sive warlike preparations have in effect been preparations 

20 On the Nature of Peace 

for breaking the peace ; against which, at least ostensibly, 
a remedy had been sought in the preparation of still 
heavier armaments, with full realisation that more arma- 
ment would unfailingly entail a more unsparing and more 
disastrous war, which sums up the statecraft of the 
past half century. 

Prussia, and afterwards Prussianised Germany, has 
come in for the distinction of taking the lead and forcing 
the pace in this competitive preparation or "prepared- 
ness 11 for war in time of peace. That such has been 
the case appears in good part to be something of a for- 
tuitous circumstance. The season of enterprising force 
and fraud to which that country owes its induction into 
the concert of nations is an episode of recent history; 
so recent, indeed, that the German nation has not yet had 
time to live it down and let it be forgotten; and the 
Imperial State is consequently burdened with an irri- 
tably uneasy sense of odium and an established reputation 
for unduly bad faith. From which it has followed, 
among other things, that the statesmen of the Empire 
have lived in the expectation of having their unforgotten 
derelictions brought home, and so have, on the one hand, 
found themselves unable to credit any pacific intentions 
professed by the neighboring Powers, while on the other 
hand they have been unable to gain credence for their 
own voluble professions of peace and amity. So it has 
come about that, by a fortuitous conjuncture of scarcely 
relevant circumstances, Prussia and the Empire have 
been thrown into the lead in the race of "preparedness" 
and have been led assiduously to hasten a breach which 
they could ill afford. It is, to say the least, extremely 
doubtful if the event would have been substantially dif- 
ferent in the absence of that special provocation to com- 

Introductory 21 

petitive preparedness that has been injected into the sit- 
uation by this German attitude ; but the rate of approach 
to a warlike climax has doubtless been hastened by the 
anticipatory policy of preparedness which the Prussian 
dynasty has seen itself constrained to pursue. Eventu- 
ally, the peculiar circumstances of its case embarrass- 
ment at home and distaste and discredit abroad have 
induced the Imperial State to take the line of a defensive 
offense, to take war by the forelock and retaliate on pre- 
sumptive enemies for prospective grievances. But in any 
case, the progressive improvement in transport and com- 
munication, as well as in the special technology of war- 
fare, backed by greatly enhanced facilities for indoctrinat- 
ing the populace with militant nationalism, these ways 
and means, working under the hand of patriotic states- 
men must in course of the past century have brought the 
peace of Europe to so precarious a footing as would have 
provoked a material increase in the equipment for na- 
tional defense; which would unavoidably have led to 
competitive armament and an enhanced international dis- 
trust and animosity, eventually culminating in hostilities. 

It may well be that the plea of defensive preparation 
advanced by the statesmen, Prussian and others, in apol- 
ogy for competitive armaments is a diplomatic subter- 
fuge, there are indications that such has commonly 
been the case; but even if it commonly is visibly disin- 
genuous, the need of making such a plea to cover more 
sinister designs is itself an evidence that an avowedly 
predatory enterprise no longer meets with the requisite 
popular approval. Even if an exception to this rule be 
admitted in the recent attitude of the German people, 
it is to be recalled that the exception was allowed to stand 

22 On the Nalure of Peace 

only transiently, and that presently the avowal of a pred- 
atory design in this case was urgently disclaimed in the 
face of adversity. Even those who speak most fluently 
for the necessity of war, and for its merits as a needed 
discipline in the manly virtues, are constrained by the 
prevailing sentiment to deprecate its necessity. 

Yet it is equally evident that when once a warlike 
enterprise has been entered upon so far as to commit the 
nation to hostilities, it will have the cordial support of 
popular sentiment even if it is patently an aggressive war. 
Indeed, it is quite a safe generalisation that when hostil- 
ities have once been got fairly under way by the inter- 
ested statesmen, the patriotic sentiment of the nation 
may confidently be counted on to back the enterprise 
irrespective of the merits of the quarrel. But even if the 
national sentiment is in this way to be counted in as an 
incidental matter of course, it is also to be kept in mind 
in this connection that any quarrel so entered upon by any 
nation will forthwith come to have the moral approval 
of the community. Dissenters will of course be found, 
sporadically, who do not readily fall in with the pre- 
vailing animus ; but as a general proposition it will still 
hold true that any such quarrel forthwith becomes a just 
quarrel in the eyes of those who have so been com- 
mitted to it 

A corollary following from this general theorem may 
be worth nothing in the same connection. Any politician 
who succeeds in embroiling his country in a war, how- 
ever nefarious, becomes a popular hero and is reputed a 
wise and righteous statesman, at least for the time being. 
Illustrative instances need perhaps not, and indeed can 
not gracefully, be named; most popular heroes and re- 
puted statesmen belong in this class. 

Introductory 23 

Another corollary, which bears more immediately on 
the question in hand, follows also from the same general 
proposition: Since the ethical values involved 'in any 
given international contest are substantially of the nature 
of after-thought or accessory, they may safely be left on 
one side in any endeavour to understand or account for 
any given outbreak of hostilities. The moral indignation 
of both parties to the quarrel is to be taken for granted, 
as being the statesman's chief and necessary ways and 
means of bringing any warlike enterprise to a head and 
floating it to a creditable finish. It is a precipitate of 
the partisan animosity that inspires both parties and holds 
them to their duty of self-sacrifice and devastation, and 
at its best it will chiefly serve as a cloak of self-righteous- 
ness to extenuate any exceptionally profligate excursions 
in the conduct of hostilities. 

Any warlike enterprise that is hopefully to be entered 
on must have the moral sanction of the community, or 
of an effective majority in the community. It conse- 
quently becomes the first concern of the warlike states- 
man to put this moral force in train for the adventure 
on which he is bent. And there are two main lines of 
motivation by which the spiritual forces of any Christian 
nation may so be mobilised for warlike adventure: (1) 
The preservation or furtherance of the community's ma- 
terial interests, real or fancied, and (2) vindication of 
the national honor. To these should perhaps be added 
as a third, the advancement and perpetuation of the na- 
tion's "Culture ;" that is to say, of its habitual scheme of 
use and wont. It is a nice question whether, in practical 
effect, the aspiration to perpetuate the national Culture is 
consistently to be distinguished from the vindication of 
the national honor. There is perhaps the distinction to 

24 On the Nature of Peace 

be made that "the perpetuation of the national Culture" 
lends a readier countenance to gratuitous aggression and 
affords a broader cover for incidental atrocities, since the 
enemies of the national Culture will necessarily be con- 
ceived as an inferior and obstructive people, falling be- 
neath the rules of commonplace decorum. 

Those material interests for which modern nations 
are in the habit of taking to arms are commonly of a 
fanciful character, in that they commonly have none but 
an imaginary net value to the community at large. Such 
are, e. g., the national trade or the increase of the na- 
tional territory. These and the like may serve the war- 
like or dynastic ambitions of the nation's masters; they 
may also further the interests of office-holders, and more 
particularly of certain business houses or businessmen 
who stand to gain some small advantage by help of the 
powers in control; but it all signifies nothing more to 
the common man than an increased bill of governmental 
expense and a probable increase in the cost of living. 

That a nation's trade should be carried in vessels owned 
by its citizens or registered in its ports will doubtless 
have some sentimental value to the common run of its 
citizens, as is shown by the fact that disingenuous poli- 
ticians always find it worth their while to appeal to this 
chauvinistic predilection. But it patently is all a com- 
pletely idle question, in point of material advantage, to 
anyone but the owners of the vessels ; and to these own- 
ers ^it is also of no material consequence under what flag 
their investments sail, except so far as the government 
in question may afford them some preferential oppor- 
tunity for gain, always at the cost of their fellow citi- 
zens. The like is equally true as regards the domicile 
and the national allegiance of the businessmen who buy 

Introductory 25 

and sell the country's imports and exports. The common 
man plainly has no slightest material interest in the na- 
tionality or the place of residence of those who conduct 
this traffic ; though all the facts go to say that in some 
puzzle-headed way the common man commonly persuades 
himself that it does make some occult sort of difference 
to him ; so that h % e is commonly willing to pay something 
substantial toward subsidising businessmen of his own 
nationality, in the way of a protective tariff and the like. 

The only material advantage to be derived from such 
a preferential trade policy arises in the case of interna- 
tional hostilities, in which case the home-owned vessels 
and merchants may on occasion count toward military 
readiness ; although even in that connection their value 
is contingent and doubtful. But in this way they may 
contribute in their degree to a readiness to break off 
peaceable relations with other countries. It is only for 
warlike purposes, that is to say for the dynastic ambi- 
tions of warlike statesmen, that these preferential con- 
trivances in economic policy have any substantial value; 
and even in that connection their expediency is always 
doubtful. They are a source of national jealousy, and 
they may on occasion become a help to military strategy 
when this national jealousy eventuates in hostilities. 

The run of the facts touching this matter of national 
trade policy is something as follows : At the instance of 
businessmen who stand to gain by it, and with the cordial 
support of popular sentiment, the constituted authorities 
sedulously further the increase of shipping and com- 
merce under protection of the national power. At the 
same time they spend substance and diplomatic energy 
in an endeavor to extend the international market fa- 
cilities open to the country's businessmen, with a view 

26 On the Nature of Peace 

always to a preferential advantage in favor of these 
businessmen, also with the sentimental support of the 
common man and at his cost. To safeguard these com- 
mercial interests, as well as property-holdings of the 
nation's citizens in foreign parts, the nation maintains 
naval, military, consular and diplomatic establishments, 
at the common expense. The total gains derivable from 
these commercial and investment interests abroad, under 
favorable circumstances, will never by any chance equal 
the cost of the governmental apparatus installed to fur- 
ther and safeguard them. These gains, such as they are, 
go to the investors and businessmen engaged in these 
enterprises; while the costs incident to the adventure 
are borne almost wholly by the common man, who gets 
no gain from it all. Commonly, as in the case of a pro- 
tective tariff or a preferential navigation law, the cost to 
the common man is altogether out of proportion to the 
gain which accrues to the businessmen for whose benefit 
he carries the burden. The only other class, besides the 
preferentially favored businessmen, who derive any ma- 
terial benefit from this arrangement is that of the office- 
holders who take care of this governmental traffic and 
draw something in the way of salaries and perquisites; 
and whose cost is defrayed by the common man, who 
remains an outsider in all but the payment of the bills. 
The common man is proud and glad to bear this burden 
for the benefit of his wealthier neighbors, and he does 
so with the singular conviction that in some occult man- 
ner he profits by it. All this is incredible, but it is every- 
day fact. 

In case it should happen that these business interests 
of the nation's businessmen interested in trade or invest- 
ments abroad are jeopardised by a disturbance of any 

Introductory 27 

kind in these foreign parts in which these business inter- 
ests lie, then it immediately becomes the urgent concern 
of the national authorities to use all means at hand for 
maintaining the gainful traffic of these businessmen un- 
diminished, and the common man pays the cost. Should 
such an untoward situation go to such sinister lengths as 
to involve actual loss to these business interests or other- 
wise give rise to v a tangible grievance, it becomes an af- 
fair of the national honor; whereupon no sense of pro- 
portion as between the material gains at stake and the 
cost of remedy or retaliation need longer be observed, 
since the national honor is beyond price. The motiva- 
tion in the case shifts from the ground of material inter- 
est to the spiritual ground of the moral sentiments. 

In this connection "honor" is of course to be taken 
in the euphemistic sense which the term has under the 
code duello governing "affairs of honor." It carries no 
connotation of honesty, veracity, equity, liberality, or un- 
selfishness. This national honor is of the nature of an 
intangible or immaterial asset, of course; it is a matter 
of prestige, a sportsmanlike conception; but that fact 
must not be taken to mean that it is of any the less sub- 
stantial effect for purposes of a casus belli than the ma- 
terial assets of the community. Quite the contrary: 
"Who steals my purse, steals trash," etc. In point of fact, 
it will commonly happen that any material grievance must 
first be converted into terms of this spiritual capital, be- 
fore it is effectually turned to account as a stimulus to 
warlike enterprise. 

Even among a people with so single an eye to the main 
chance as the American community it will be found true, 
on experiment or on review of the historical evidence, 
that an offense against the national honor commands a 

28 On the Nature of Peace 

profounder and more unreserved resentment than any 
infraction of the rights of person or property simply. 
This has latterly been well shown in connection with the 
manoeuvres of the several European belligerents, de- 
signed to bend American neutrality to the service of one 
side or the other. Both parties have aimed to intimidate 
and cajole; but while the one party has taken recourse 
to effrontery and has made much and ostentatious use 
of threats and acts of violence against person and prop- 
erty, the other has constantly observed a deferential atti- 
tude toward American national self-esteem, even while 
engaged on a persistent infraction of American com- 
mercial rights. The first named line of diplomacy has 
convicted itself of miscarriage and has lost the strategic 
advantage, as against the none too adroit finesse of the 
other side. The statesmen of this European war power 
were so ill advised as to enter on a course of tentatively 
cumulative intimidation, by threats and experimentally 
graduated crimes against the property and persons of 
American citizens, with a view to coerce American cu- 
pidity and yet to avoid carrying these manoeuvres of ter- 
rorism far enough to arouse an unmanageable sense of 
outrage. The experiment served to show that the break- 
ing point in popular indignation will be reached before 
the terrorism has gone far enough to raise a serious ques- 
tion of pecuniary caution. 

This national honor, which so is rated a necessary of 
life, is an immaterial substance in a peculiarly high- 
wrought degree, being not only not physically tangible 
but also not even capable of adequate statement in pe- 
cuniary terms, as would be the case with ordinary imma- 
terial assets. It is true, where the point of grievance out 
of which a question of the national honor arises is a pe- 

Introductory 29 

cuniary discrepancy, the national honor can not be satis- 
fied without a pecuniary accounting; but it needs no 
argument to convince all right-minded persons that even 
at such a juncture the national honor that has been com- 
promised is indefinitely and indefinably more than what 
can be made to appear on an accountant's page. It is a 
highly valued asset, or at least a valued possession, but 
it is of a metaphysical, not of a physical nature, and 
it is not known to serve any material or otherwise useful 
end apart from affording a practicable grievance conse- 
quent upon its infraction. 

This national honor is subject to injury in divers ways, 
and so may yield a fruitful grievance even apart from of- 
fences against the person or property of the nation's busi- 
nessmen; as, e. g., through neglect or disregard of the 
conventional punctilios governing diplomatic intercourse, 
or by disrespect or contumelious speech touching the Flag, 
or the persons of national officials, particularly of such 
officials as have only a decorative use, or the costumes 
worn by such officials, or, again, by failure to observe 
the ritual prescribed for parading the national honor on 
stated occasions. When duly violated the national honor 
may duly be made whole again by similarly immaterial 
instrumentalities; as, e. g., by recital of an appropriate 
formula of words, by formal consumption of a stated 
quantity of ammunition in the way of a salute, by "dip- 
ping" an ensign, and the like, procedure which can, of 
course, have none but a magical efficacy. The national 
honor, in short, moves in the realm of magic, and touches 
the frontiers of religion. 

Throughout this range of duties incumbent on the na- 
tional defense, it will be noted, the offenses or discrepan- 
cies to be guarded against or corrected by recourse to 

30 On the Nature of Peace 

arms have much of a ceremonial character. Whatever 
may be the material accidents that surround any given 
concrete grievance that comes up for appraisal and re- 
dress, in bringing the case into the arena for trial by com- 
bat it is the spiritual value of the offense that is played 
up and made the decisive ground of action, particularly 
in so far as appeal is made to the sensibilities of the com- 
mon man, who will have to bear the cost of the adven- 
ture. And in such a case it will commonly happen that 
the common man is unable, without advice, to see that 
any given hostile act embodies a sacrilegious infraction of 
the national honor. He will at any such conjuncture 
scarcely rise to the pitch of moral indignation necessary 
to float a warlike reprisal, until the expert keepers of the 
Code come in to expound and certify the nature of the 
transgression. But when once the lesion to the national 
honor has been ascertained, appraised and duly exhibited 
by those persons whose place in the national economy it 
is to look after all that sort of thing, the common man 
will be found nowise behindhand about resenting the evil 
usage of which he so, by force of interpretation, has been 
a victim. 



Patriotism may be defined as a sense of partisan soli- 
darity in respect of prestige. What the expert psycholo- 
gists, and perhaps the experts in Political Science, might 
find it necessary to say in the course of an exhaustive 
analysis and definition of this human faculty would pre- 
sumably be something more precise and more extensive. 
There is no inclination here to forestall definition, but 
only to identify and describe the concept that loosely un- 
derlies the colloquial use of this term, so far as seems 
necessary to an inquiry into the part played by the patri- 
otic animus in the life of modern peoples, particularly 
as it bears on questions of war and peace. 

On any attempt to divest this concept of all extrane- 
ous or adventitious elements it will be found that such 
a sense of an undivided joint interest in a collective body 
of prestige will always remain as an irreducible minimum. 
This is the substantial core about which many and divers 
subsidiary interests cluster, but without which these other 
clustering interests and aspirations will not, jointly or 
severally, make up a working palladium of the patri- 
otic spirit. 

It is true, seen in some other light or rated in some 
other bearing or connection, one and another of these 
other interests, ideals, aspirations, beatitudes, may well 
be adjudged nobler, wiser, possibly more urgent than the 


32 On the Nature of Peace 

national prestige ; but in the forum of patriotism all these 
other necessaries of human life the glory of God and 
the good of man rise by comparison only to the rank 
of subsidiaries, auxiliaries, amenities. He is an indiffer- 
ent patriot who will let "life, liberty and the pursuit of 
happiness" cloud the issue and get in the way of the 
main business in hand. 

There once were, we are told, many hardy and enter- 
prising spirits banded together along the Spanish Main 
for such like ends, just as there are in our day an even 
greater number of no less single-minded spirits bent on 
their own "life, liberty and pursuit of happiness," ac- 
cording to their light, in the money-markets of the mod- 
ern world; but for all their admirable qualities and 
splendid achievements, their passionate quest of these 
amenities has not entitled these Gentlemen Adventurers 
to claim rank as patriots. The poet says : 

"Strike for your altars and your fires! 
Strike for the green graves of your sires ! 

God and your native land !" 

But, again, a temperate scrutiny of the list of desiderata 
so enumerated in the poet's flight, will quickly bring out 
the fact that any or all of them might drop out of the 
situation without prejudice to the plain call of patriotic 
duty. In the last resort, when the patriotic spirit falls 
back on its naked self alone, it is not reflection on the 
merits of these good and beautiful things in Nature that 
gives him his cue and enforces the ultimate sacrifice. 
Indeed it is something infinitely more futile and infinitely 
more urgent, provided only that the man is imbued with 
the due modicum of patriotic devotion; as, indeed, men 
commonly are. It is not faith, hope or charity that abide 
as the irreducible minimum of virtue in the patriot's 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 33 

scheme of things; particularly not that charity that has 
once been highly spoken of as being the greatest of these. 
It may be that, viewed in the light of reason, as Doctor 
Katzenberger would say, patriotic devotion is the most 
futile thing in the world; but, for good or ill, the light 
of reason has nothing to do with the case, no more 
than "The flowers that bloom in the spring." 

The patriotic spirit is a spirit of emulation, evidently, 
at the same time that it is emulation shot through with a 
sense of solidarity. It belongs under the general cap- 
tion of sportsmanship, rather than of workmanship. 
Now, any enterprise in sportsmanship is bent on an in- 
vidious success, which must involve as its major purpose 
the defeat and humiliation of some competitor, whatever 
else may be comprised in its aim. Its aim is a differential 
gain, as against a rival; and the emulative spirit that 
comes under the head of patriotism commonly, if not 
invariably, seeks this differential advantage by injury of 
the rival rather than by an increase of home-bred well- 

Indeed, well-being is altogether out of the perspective, 
except as underpinning for an edifice of national prestige. 
It is, at least, a safe generalisation that the patriotic sen- 
timent never has been known to rise to the consummate 
pitch of enthusiastic abandon except when bent on some 
work of concerted malevolence. Patriotism is of a con-C 
tentious complexion, and finds its full expression in no 
other outlet than warlike enterprise ; its highest and final 
appeal is for the death, damage, discomfort and destruc- 
tion of the party of the second part. 

It is not that the spirit of patriotism will tolerate no 
other sentiments bearing on matters of public interest, 
but only that it will tolerate none that traverse the call 

34 On the Nature of Peace 

of the national prestige. Like other men, the patriot may 
be moved by many and divers other considerations, be- 
sides that of the national prestige ; and these other con- 
siderations may be of the most genial and reasonable 
kind, or they may also be as foolish and mischievous as 
any comprised in the range of human infirmities. He 
may be a humanitarian given over to the kindliest solici- 
tude for the common good, or a religious devotee hedged 
about in all his motions by the ever present fear of God, 
or taken up with artistic, scholarly or scientific pursuits ; 
or, again, he may be a spendthrift devotee of profane dis- 
sipation, whether in the slums or on the higher levels of 
gentility, or he may be engaged on a rapacious quest 
of gain, as a businessman within the law or as a criminal 
without its benefit, or he may spend his best endeavors 
in advancing the interests of his class at the cost of the 
nation at large. All that is understood as a matter of 
course and is beside the point. In so far as he is a com- 
plete patriot these other interests will fall away from 
him when the one clear call of patriotic duty comes to 
enlist him in the cause of the national prestige. Thers 
is, indeed, nothing to hinder a bad citizen being a good 
patriot; nor does it follow that a good citizen in other 
respects may not be a very indifferent patriot. 

Many and various other preferences and considera- 
tions may coincide with the promptings of the patriotic 
spirit, and so may come in to coalesce with and fortify 
its driving force; and it is usual for patriotic men to 
seek support for their patriotic impulses in some rea- 
soned purpose of this extraneous kind that is believed to 
be served T>y following the call of the national prestige, 
it may be a presumptive increase and diffusion of culture 
at large, or the spread and enhancement of a presump- 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriptism 35 

tively estimable religious faith, or a prospective libera- 
tion of mankind from servitude to obnoxious masters and 
outworn institutions; or, again, it may be the increase 
of peace and material well-being among men, within the 
national frontiers or impartially throughout the civilised 
world. There are, substantially, none of the desirable 
things in this world that are not so counted on by some 
considerable body of patriots to be accomplished by the 
success of their own particular patriotic aspirations. 
What they will not come to an understanding about is 
the particular national ascendency with which the attain- 
ment of these admirable ends is conceived to be bound up. 
The ideals, needs and aims that so are brought into 
the patriotic argument to lend a color of rationality to 
the patriotic aspiration in any given case will of course 
be such ideals, needs and aims as are currently accepted 
and felt to be authentic and self -legitimating among the 
people in whose eyes the given patriotic enterprise is to 
find favor. So one finds that, e. g., among the follow- 
ers of Islam, devout and resolute, the patriotic statesman 
(that is to say the politician who designs to make use of 
the popular patriotic fervor) will in the last resort ap- 
peal to the claims and injunctions of the faith- In a 
similar way the Prussian statesman bent on dynastic en- 
terprise will conjure in the name of the dynasty and of 
culture and efficiency; or, if worse comes to worst, an 
outbreak will be decently covered with a plea of mortal 
peril and self-defense. Among English-speaking peoples 
much is to be gained by showing that the path of patri- 
otic glory is at the same time the way of equal-handed 
justice under the rule of free institutions ; at the same 
time, in a fully commercialised community, such as the 
English-speaking commonly are, material benefits in the 

36 On the Nature of Peace 

way of trade will go far to sketch in a background of 
decency for any enterprise that looks to the enhance- 
ment of the national prestige. 

But any promise of gain, whether in the nation's ma- 
terial or immaterial assets, will not of itself carry full 
conviction to the commonplace modern citizen; or even 
to such modern citizens as are best endowed with a na- 
tional spirit. By and large, and overlooking that appre- 
ciable contingent of morally defective citizens that is to 
be counted on in any hybrid population, it will hold true 
that no contemplated enterprise or line of policy will fully 
commend itself to the popular sense of merit and expe- 
diency until it is given a moral turn, so as to bring it to 
square with the dictates of right and honest dealing. 
On no terms short of this will it effectually coalesce with 
the patriotic aspiration. To give the fullest practical 
effect to the patriotic fervor that animates any modern 
nation, and so turn it to use in the most effective way, 
it is necessary to show that the demands of equity are 
involved in the case. Any cursory survey of modern 
historical events bearing on this point, among the civilised 
peoples, will bring out the fact that no concerted and sus- 
tained movement of the national spirit can be had without 
enlisting the community's moral convictions. The com- 
mon man must be persuaded that right is on his side. 
"Thrice is he armed who knows his quarrel just." The 
grounds of this conviction may often be tawdry enough, 
but the conviction is a necessary factor in the case. 

The requisite moral sanction may be had on various 
grounds, and, on the whole, it is not an extremely difficult 
matter to arrange. In the simplest and not infrequent 
case it may turn on a question of equity in respect of trade 
or investment as between the citizens or subjects of the 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 37 

several rival nations ; the Chinese "Open Door" affords 
as sordid an example as may be desired. Or it may be 
only an envious demand for a share in the world's ma- 
terial resources "A Place in the Sun," as a picturesque 
phrase describes it; or "The Freedom of the Seas/' as 
another equally vague and equally invidious demand for 
international equity phrases it. These demands are put 
forward with a color of demanding something in the 
way of equitable opportunity for the commonplace peace- 
able citizen ; but quite plainly they have none but a fan- 
ciful bearing on the fortunes of the common man in 
time of peace, and they have a meaning to the nation only 
as a fighting unit ; apart from their prestige value, these 
things are worth fighting for only as prospective means of 
fighting. The like appeal to the moral sensibilities may, 
again, be made in the way of a call to self-defense, under 
the rule of Live and let live; or it may also rest on the 
more tenuous obligation to safeguard the national integ- 
rity of a weaker neighbor, under a broader interpreta- 
tion of the same equitable rule of Live and let live. But 
in one way or another it is necessary to set up the con- 
viction that the promptings of patriotic ambition have 
the sanction of moral necessity. 

It is not that the line of national policy or patriotic 
enterprise so entered upon with the support of popular 
sentiment need be right and equitable as seen in dis- 
passionate perspective from the outside, but only that it 
should be capable of being made to seem right and eq- 
uitable to the biased populace whose moral convictions 
are requisite to its prosecution; which is quite another 
matter. Nor is it that any such patriotic enterprise is, 
in fact, entered on simply or mainly on these moral 
grounds that so are alleged in its justification, but only 

38 On the Nature of Peace 

that some such colorable ground of justification or exten- 
uation is necessary to be alleged, and to be credited by 
popular belief. 

It is not that the common man is not sufficiently patri- 
otic, but only that he is a patriot hampered with a plod- 
ding and uneasy sense of right and honest dealing, and 
that one must m^ike up one's account with this moral bias 
in looking to any sustained and concerted action that 
draws on the sentiment of the common man for its car- 
rying on. But the moral sense in the case may be some- 
what easily satisfied with a modicum of equity, in case 
the patriotic bias of the people is well pronounced, or in 
case it is re-enforced with a sufficient appeal to self- 
interest In those cases where the national fervor rises 
to an excited pitch, even very attenuated considerations 
of right and justice, such as would under ordinary con- 
ditions doubtfully bear scrutiny as extenuating circum- 
stances, may come to serve as moral authentication for 
any extravagant course of action to which the craving 
for national prestige may incite. The higher the pitch 
of patriotic fervor, the jmore tenuous and more thread- 
bare may be the requisite moral sanction. By cumulative 
excitation some very remarkable results have latterly 
been attained along this line. 

Patriotism is evidently a spirit of particularism, of 
aliency and animosity between contrasted groups of per- 
sons; it lives on invidious comparison, and works out 
in mutual hindrance and jealousy between nations. It 
commonly goes the length of hindering intercourse and 
obstructing traffic that would patently serve the material 
and cultural well-being of both nationalities; and not 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 39 

infrequently, indeed normally, it eventuates in -competi- 
tive damage to both. 

All this holds true in the world of modern civilisation, 
at the same time that the modern civilised scheme of life 
is, notoriously, of a cosmopolitan character, both in its 
cultural requirements and in its economic structure. 
Modern culture is drawn on too large a scale, is of too 
complex and multiform a character, requires the coopera- 
tion of too many and various lines of inquiry, experience 
and insight, to admit of its being confined within na- 
tional frontiers, except at the cost of insufferable crip- 
pling and retardation. The science and scholarship that 
is the peculiar pride of civilised Christendom is not only 
international, but rather it is homogeneously cosmopoli- 
tan ; so that in this bearing there are, in effect, no national 
frontiers ; with the exception, of course, that in a season 
of patriotic intoxication, such as the current war has 
induced, even the scholars and scientists will be tempo- 
rarily oversef by their patriotic fervor. Indeed, with 
the best efforts of obscurantism and national jealousy to 
the contrary, it remains patently true that modern culture 
is the culture of Christendom at large, not the culture 
of one and another nation in severalty within the confines 
of Christendom. It is only as and in so far as they 
partake in and contribute to the general run of Western 
civilisation at large that the people of any one of these 
nations of Christendom can claim standing as a cultured 
nation; and even any distinctive variation from this 
general run of civilised life, such as may give a "local 
color" of ideals, tastes and conventions, will, in point 
of cultural value, have to be rated as an idle detail, a 
species of losf motion, that serves no better purpose than 
a transient estrangement. 

40 On the Nature of Peace 

So also, the modern state of the industrial arts is of a 
like cosmopolitan character, in point of scale, specialisa- 
tion, and the necessary use of diversified resources, of 
climate and raw materials. None of the countries of 
Europe, e. g., is competent to carry on its industry by 
modern technological methods without constantly draw- 
ing on resources outside of its national boundaries. Iso- 
lation in this industrial respect, exclusion from the world 
market, would mean intolerable loss of efficiency, more 
pronounced the more fully the given country has taken 
over this modern state of the industrial arts. Exclusion 
from the general body of outlying resources would seri- 
ously cripple any one or all of them, and effectually de- 
prive them of the usufruct of this technology; and par- 
tial exclusion, by prohibitive or protective tariffs and the 
like, unavoidably results in a partial lowering of the ef- 
ficiency of each, and therefore a reduction of the current 
well-being among them all together. 

Into this cultural and technological system of the mod- 
ern world the patriotic spirit fits like dust in the eyes 
and sand in the bearings. Its net contribution to the 
outcome is obscuration, distrust, and retardation at 
every point where it touches the fortunes of modern man- 
kind. Yet it is forever present in the counsels of the 
statesmen and in the affections of the common man, and 
it never ceases to command the regard of all men as the 
prime attribute of manhood and the final test of the 
desirable citizen. It is scarcely an exaggeration to say 
that no other consideration is allowed in abatement of the 
claims of patriotic loyalty, and that such loyalty will be 
allowed to cover any multitude of sins. When the an- 
cient philosopher described Man as a "political animal," 
this, in effect, was what he affirmed; and today the 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 41 

ancient maxim is as good as new. The patriotic spirit 
is at cross purposes with modern life, but in any test 
case it is found that the claims of life yield before those 
of patriotism; and any voice that dissents from this 
order of things is as a voice crying in the wilderness. 

To anyone who is inclined to moralise on the singular 
discrepancies of human life this state of the case will be 
fruitful of much profound speculation. The patriotic 
animus appears to be an enduring trait of human nature, 
an ancient heritage that has stood over unshorn from time 
immemorial, under the Mendelian rule of the stability of 
racial types. It is archaic, not amenable to elimination or 
enduring suppression, and apparently not appreciably 
to be mitigated by reflection, education, experience or 
selective breeding. 

Throughout the historical period, and presumably 
through an incalculable period of the unrecorded past, 
patriotic manslaughter has consistently been weeding out 
of each successive generation of men the most patriotic 
among them; with the net result that the level of pa- 
triotic ardor today appears to be no lower than it ever 
was. At the same time, with the advance of population, 
of culture and of the industrial arts, patriotism has grown 
increasingly disserviceable ; and it is to all appearance 
as ubiquitous and as powerful as ever, and is held in as 
high esteem. 

The continued prevalence of this archaic animus among 
the modern peoples, as well as the fact that it is universal- 
ly placed high among the virtues, must be taken to argue 
that it is, in its elements, an hereditary trait, of the nature 
of an inborn impulsive propensity, rather than a pro- 
duct of habituation. It is, in substance, not something 

42 On the Nature of Peace 

that can be learned and unlearned. From one generation 
to another, the allegiance may shift from one nationality 
to another, but the fact of unreflecting allegiance at large 
remains. And it all argues also that no sensible change 
has taken effect in the hereditary endowment of the race, 
at least in this respect, during the period known by rec- 
ord or by secure inference, say, since the early Neolithic 
in Europe ; and this in spite of the fact that there has all 
this while been opportunity for radical changes in the 
European population by cross-breeding, infiltration and 
displacement of the several racial stocks that go to make 
up this population. Hence, on slight reflection the infer- 
ence has suggested itself and has gained acceptance that 
this trait of human nature must presumably have been 
serviceable to the peoples of the earlier time, on those 
levels of savagery or of the lower barbarism on which 
the ancestral stocks of the European population first made 
good their survival and proved their fitness to people that 
quarter of the earth. Such, indeed, is the common vi^w ; 
so common as to pass for matter-of-course, and therefore 
habitually to escape scrutiny. 

Still it need not follow, as more patient reflection will 
show. All the European peoples show much the same 
animus in this respect ; whatever their past history may 
have been, and whatever the difference in past experience 
that might be conceived to have shaped their tempera- 
ment. Any difference in the pitch of patriotic conceit 
and animosity, between the several nationalities or the 
several localities, is by no means wide, even in cases 
where the racial composition of the population is held to 
be very different, as, e. g., between the peoples on the 
Baltic seaboard and those on the Mediterranean. In point 
of fact, in this matter of patriotic animus there appears 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 43 

to be a wider divergence, temperamentally, between in- 
dividuals within 'any one of these communities than be- 
tween the common run in any one community and the 
corresponding common run in any other. But even such 
divergence of individual temper in respect of patriotism 
as is to be met with, first and last, is after all surprisingly 
small in view of the scope for individual -variation which 
this European population would seem to offer. 

These peoples of Europe, all and several, are hybrids 
compounded out of the same run of racial elements, but 
mixed in varying proportions. On any parallel of lati- 
tude taken in the climatic rather than in the geometric 
sense the racial composition of the west-European pop- 
ulation will be much the same, virtually identical in ef- 
fect, although always of a hybrid complexion; whereas 
on any parallel of longitude also in the climatic sense 
the racial composition will vary progressively, but always 
within the limits of the same general scheme of hybridisa- 
tion, the variation being a variation in the proportion in 
which the several racial elements are present in any given 
case. But in no case does a notable difference in racial 
composition coincide with a linguistic or national frontier. 
But in point of patriotic animus these European peoples 
are one as good as another, whether the comparison be 
traced on parallels of latitude or of longitude. And the 
inhabitants of each national territory, or of each detail 
locality, appear also to run surprisingly uniform in re- 
spect of their patriotic spirit. 

Heredity in any such community of hybrids will, su- 
perficially, appear to run somewhat haphazard. There 
will, of course, be no traceable difference between social 
or economic classes, in point of heredity, as is visibly 

44 On the Nature of Peace 

the case in Christendom. But variation of an appar- 
ently haphazard description will be large and ubiquitous 
among the individuals of such a populace. Indeed, it is 
a matter of course and of easy verification that individual 
variation within such a hybrid stock will greatly exceed 
the extreme differences that may subsist between the sev- 
eral racial types that have gone to produce the hybrid 
stock. Such is the case of the European peoples. The 
inhabitants vary greatly among themselves, both in phys- 
ical and in mental traits, as would be expected ; and the 
variation between individuals in point of patriotic ani- 
mus should accordingly also be expected to be extremely 
wide, should, in effect, greatly exceed the difference, if 
any, in this respect between the several racial elements 
engaged in the European population. Some appreciable 
difference in this respect there appears to be, between 
individuals; but individual divergence from the normal 
or average appears always to be of a sporadic sort, it 
does not run on class lines, whether of occupation, status 
or property, nor does it run at all consistently from 
parent to child. When all is told the argument returns to 
the safe ground that these variations in point of patriotic 
animus are sporadic and inconsequential, and do not 
touch the general proposition that, one with another, the 
inhabitants of Europe and the European Colonies are 
sufficiently patriotic, and that the average endowment in 
this respect runs with consistent uniformity across all 
differences of time, place and circumstance. It would, in 
fact, be extremely hazardous to affirm that there is a 
sensible difference in the ordinary pitch of patriotic sen- 
timent as between any two widely diverse samples of these 
hybrid populations, in spite of the fact that the diversity 
in visible physical traits may be quite pronounced. 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 45 

In short, the conclusion seems safe, on the whole, that 
in this respect the several racial stocks that have gone to 
produce the existing populations of Christendom have 
all been endowed about as richly one as another. Patri- 
otism appears to be a ubiquitous trait, at least among the 
races and peoples of Christendom. From which it should 
follow, that since there is, and has from the beginning 
been, no differential advantage favoring one racial stock 
or one fashion of hybrid as against another, in this mat- 
ter of patriotic animus, there should also be no ground 
of selective survival or selective elimination on this ac- 
count as between these several races and peoples. So 
that the undisturbed and undiminished prevalence of this 
trait among the European population, early or late, argues 
nothing as to its net serviceability or disserviceability 
under any of the varying conditions of culture and tech- 
nology to which these Europeans have been subjected, 
first and last ; except that it has, in any case, not proved 
so disserviceable under the conditions prevailing hitherto 
as to result in the extinction of these Europeans, one 
with another. 1 

The patriotic frame of mind has been spoken of above 
as if it were an hereditary trait, something after the 
fashion of a Mendelian unit character. Doubtless this 
is not a competent account of the matter ; but the present 
argument scarcely needs a closer analysis. Still, in a 
measure to quiet title and avoid annoyance, it may be 
noted that this patriotic animus is of the nature of a 
"frame of mind" rather than a Mendelian unit character; 

1 For a more extended discussion of this matter, cf. Imperial 
Germany and the Industrial Revolution, ch. i. and Supplementary 
Notes i. and ii. 

46 On the Nature of Peace 

that it so involves a concatenation of several impulsive 
propensities (presumably hereditary) ; and that both the 
concatenation and the special mode and amplitude of the 
response are a product of habituation, very largely of the 
nature of conventionalised use and wont. What is said 
above, therefore, goes little farther than saying that the 
underlying aptitudes requisite to this patriotic frame of 
mind are heritable, and that use and wont as bearing on 
this point run with sufficient uniformity to bring a pass- 
ably uniform result. It may be added that in this con- 
catenation spoken of there seems to be comprised, ordi- 
narily, that sentimental attachment to habitat and custom 
that is called love of home, or in its accentuated expres- 
sion, home-sickness; so also an invidious self-compla- 
cency, coupled with a gregarious bent which gives the 
invidious comparison a group content ; and further, com- 
monly if not invariably, a bent of abnegation, self-abase- 
ment, subservience, or whatever it may best be called, that 
inclines the bearer unreasoningly and unquestioningly to 
accept and serve a prescriptive ideal given by custom or 
by customary authority. 

The conclusion would therefore provisionally run to 
the effect that under modern conditions the patriotic ani- 
mus is wholly a disserviceable trait in the spiritual en- 
dowment of these peoples, in so far as bears on the 
material conditions of life unequivocally, and as regards 
the cultural interests more at large presumptively ; where- 
as there is no assured ground for a discriminating opin- 
ion as touches its possible utility or disutility at any re- 
mote period in the past. There is, of course, always room 
for the conservative estimate that, as the possession of 
this spiritual trait has not hitherto resulted in the extinc- 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 47 

tion of the race, so it may also in the calculable future 
continue to bring no more grievous results than a degree 
of mischief, without even stopping or greatly retarding 
the increase of population. 

All this, of course, is intended to apply only so far as 
it goes. It must not be taken as intending to say any 
least word in derogation of those high qualities that in- 
spire the patriotic citizen. In its economic, biological and 
cultural incidence patriotism appears to be an untoward 
trait of human nature; which has, of course, nothing to 
say as to its moral excellence, its aesthetic value, or its in- 
dispensability to a worthy life. No doubt, it is in all thes'e 
respects deserving of all the esteem and encomiums that 
fall to its share. Indeed, its well-known moral and aes- 
thetic value, as well as the reprobation that is visited on 
any shortcomings in this respect, signify, for the purposes 
of the present argument, nothing more than that the pa- 
triotic animus meets the unqualified approval of men be- 
cause they are, all and several, infected with it. -It is evi- 
dence of the ubiquitous, intimate and ineradicable pres- 
ence of this quality in human nature ; all the more since it 
continues untiringly to be held in the highest esteem in 
spite of the fact that a modicum of reflection should make 
its disserviceability plain to the meanest understanding. 
No higher praise of moral excellence, and no profounder 
test of loyalty, can be asked than this current unreserved 
commendation of a virtue that makes invariably for dam- 
age and discomfort. The virtuous impulse must be deep- 
seated and indefeasible that drives men incontinently to do 
good that evil may come of it. "Though He slay me, yet 
will I trust in Him." 

48 On the Nature of Peace 

In the light and it is a dim and wavering light of the 
archaeological evidence, helped out by circumstantial evi- 
dence from such parallel or analogous instances as are 
afforded by existing communities on a comparable level 
of culture, one may venture more or less confidently on 
a reconstruction of the manner of life among the early 
Europeans, of early neolithic times and later. 1 And so 
one may form some conception of the part played by this 
patriotic animus among those beginnings, when, if not 
the race, at least its institutions were young; and when 
the native temperament of these peoples was tried out and 
found fit to survive through the age-long and slow-moving 
eras of stone and bronze. In this connection, it appears 
safe to assume 'that since early neolithic times no sensible 
change has taken effect in the racial complexion of the 
European peoples; and therefore no sensible change in 
their spiritual and mental make-up. So that in respect of 
the spiritual elements that go to make up this patriotic 
animus the Europeans of today will be substantially iden- 
tical with the Europeans of that early time. The like is 
true as regards those other traits of temperament that 
come in question here, as being included among the stable 
characteristics that still condition the life of these peoples 
under the altered circumstances of the modern age. 

The difference betewen prehistoric Europe and the 
present state of these peoples resolves itself on analysis 
into a difference in the state of the industrial arts, to- 
gether with such institutional changes as have come on 
in the course of working out this advance in the indus- 
trial arts. The habits and the exigencies of life among 
these peoples have greatly changed ; whereas in temper- 

a Cf. Imperial Germany and the Industrial Revolution, as above. 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 49 

ament and capacities the peoples that now live by and 
under the rule of this altered state of the industrial arts 
are the same as they were. It is to be noted, therefore, 
that the fact of their having successfully come through 
the long ages of prehistory by the use of this mental and 
spiritual endowment can not be taken to argue that these 
peoples are thereby fit to meet the exigencies of this 
later and gravely altered age; nor will it do to assume 
that because these peoples have themselves worked out 
this modern culture and its technology, therefore it must 
all be suitable for their use and conducive to their bio- 
logical success. The single object lesson of the modern 
urban community, with its endless requirements in the 
way of sanitation, police, compulsory education, chari- 
ties, all this and many other discrepancies in modern 
life should enjoin caution on anyone who is inclined off- 
hand to hold that because modern men have created these 
conditions, therefore these must be the most suitable con- 
ditions of life for modern mankind. 

In the beginning, that is to say in the European begin- 
ning, men lived in small and close groups. Control was 
close within the group, and the necessity of subordinating 
individual gains and preferences to the common good 
was enjoined on the group by the exigencies of the case, 
on pain of common extinction. The situation and usages 
of existing Eskimo villages may serve to illustrate and 
enforce the argument on this head. The solidarity of 
sentiment necessary to support the requisite solidarity of 
action in the case would be a prime condition of survival 
in any racial stock exposed to the conditions which sur- 
rounded these early Europeans. This needful sense of 
solidarity would touch not simply or most imperatively 
the joint prestige of the group, but rather the joint ma- 

50 On the Nature of Peace 

terial interests; and would enforce a spirit of mutual 
support and dependence. Which would be rather helped 
than hindered by a jealous attitude of joint prestige; so 
long as no divergent interests of members within the 
group were in a position to turn this state of the common 
sentiment to their own particular advantage. 

This state of the case will have lasted for a relatively 
long time ; long enough to have tested the fitness of these 
peoples for that manner of life, longer, no doubt, than 
the interval that has elapsed since history began. Special 
interests e. g., personal and family interests will have 
been present and active in these days of the beginning; 
but so long as the group at large was small enough to 
admit of a close neighborly contact throughout its extent 
and throughout the workday routine of life, at the same 
time that it was too small and feeble to allow any appre- 
ciable dissipation of its joint energies in such pursuit of 
selfish gains as would run counter to the paramount busi- 
ness of the common livelihood, so long the sense of a 
common livelihood and a joint fortune would continue 
to hold any particularist ambitions effectually in check. 
Had it fallen out otherwise, the story of the group in 
question would have been ended, and another and more 
suitably endowed type of men, would have taken the place 
vacated by its extinction. 

With a sensible advance in the industrial arts the scale 
of operations would grow larger, and the group more 
numerous and extensive. The margin between produc- 
tion and subsistence would also widen and admit addi- 
tional scope for individual ambitions and personal gains. 
And as this process of growth and increasing productive 
efficiency went on, the control exercised by neighborly 
surveillance, through the sentiment of the common good 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 51 

as against the self-seeking pursuits of individuals and 
sub-groups, would gradually slacken; until by progres- 
sive disuse it would fall into a degree of abeyance; to 
be called into exercise and incite to concerted action only 
in the face of unusual exigencies touching the common 
fortunes of the group at large, or on persuasion that tbj 
collective interest of the group at large was placed in 
jeopardy in the molestation of one and another of its 
members from without. The group's prestige at least 
would be felt to suffer in the defeat or discourtesy suf- 
fered by any of its members at the hands of any alien; 
and, under compulsion of the ancient sense of group soli- 
darity, whatever material hardship or material gain might 
so fall to individual members in their dealings with the 
alien would pass easy scrutiny as material detriment or 
gain inuring to the group at large, in the apprehension 
of men whose sense of community interest is inflamed 
with a jealous disposition to safeguard their joint prestige. 
With continued advance in the industrial arts the cir- 
cumstances conditioning life will undergo a progressive 
change of such a character that the joint interest of the 
group at large, in the material respect, will progressively 
be less closely bound up with the material fortunes of any 
particular member or members; until in the course of 
time and change there will, in effect, in ordinary times be 
no general and inclusive community of material interest 
binding the members together in a common fortune and 
working for a common livelihood. As the rights of own- 
ership begin to take effect, so that the ownership of prop- 
erty and the pursuit of a livelihood under the rules of 
ownership come to govern men's economic relations, these 
material concerns will cease to be a matter of undivided 
joint interest, and will fall into the shape of interest in 

52 On the Nature of Peace 

severally. So soon and so far as this institution of own- 
ership or property takes effect, men's material interests 
cease to run on lines of group solidarity. Solely, or al- 
most solely, in the exceptional case of defense against 
a predatory incursion from outside, do the members of 
the group have a common interest of a material kind. 
Progressively as the state of the arts advances, the in- 
dustrial organisation advances to a larger scale and a 
more extensive specialisation, with increasing divergence 
among individual interests and individual fortunes ; and 
intercourse over larger distances grows easier and makes 
a larger grouping practicable; which enables a larger, 
prompter and more effective mobilisation of forces with 
which to defend or assert any joint claims. But by the 
same move it also follows, or at least it appears uni- 
formly to have followed in the European case, that the 
accumulation of property and the rights of ownership 
have progressively come into the first place among the 
material interests of these peoples; while anything like 
a community of usufruct has imperceptibly fallen into the 
background, and has presently gone virtually into abey- 
ance, except as an eventual recourse in extremis for the 
common defense. Property rights have displaced com- 
munity of usufruct ; and invidious distinctions as between 
persons, sub-groups, and classes have displaced commu- 
nity of prestige in the workday routine of these peoples ; 
and the distinctions between contrasted persons or classes 
have come to rest, in an ever increasing degree, directly 
or indirectly, on invidious comparisons in respect of pe- 
cuniary standing rather than on personal affiliation with 
the group at large. 

So, with the advance of the industrial arts a differentia- 
tion of a new character sets in and presently grows pro- 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 53 

gressively more pronounced and more effectual, giving 
rise to a regrouping on lines that run regardless of those 
frontiers that divide one community from another for 
purposes of patriotic emulation. So far as it comes 
chiefly and typically in question here, this regrouping 
takes place on two distinct but somewhat related princi- 
ples of contrast: that of wealth and poverty, and that 
of master and servant, or authority and obedience. The 
material interests of the population in this way come to 
be divided between the group of those who own and those 
who command, on the one hand, and of those who work 
and who obey, on the other hand. 

Neither of these two contrasted categories of persons 
have any direct material interest in the maintenance of the 
patriotic community; or at any rate no such interest as 
should reasonably induce them to spend their own time 
and substance in support of the political (patriotic) or- 
ganisation within which they live. It is only in so far 
as one or another of these interests looks for a more than 
proportionate share in any prospective gain from the 
joint enterprise, that the group or class in question can 
reasonably be counted on to bear its share in the joint 
venture. And it is only when and in so far as their par- 
ticular material or self-regarding interest is reenforced 
by patriotic conceit, that they can be counted on to spend 
themselves in furtherance of the patriotic enterprise, with- 
out the assurance of a more than proportionate share in 
any gains that may be held in prospect from any such 
joint enterprise; and it is only in its patriotic bearing 
that the political community continues to be a joint ven- 
ture. That is to say, in more generalised terms, through 
the development of the rights of property, and of such 
like prescriptive claims of privilege and prerogative, it 

54 On the Nature of Peace 

has come about that other community interests have fallen 
away, until the collective prestige remains as virtually 
the sole community interest which can hold the sentiment 
of the group in a bond of solidarity. 

To one or another of these several interested groups 
or classes within the community the political organisation 
may work a benefit; but only to one or another, not to 
each and several, jointly or collectively. Since by no 
chance will the benefit derived from such joint enterprise 
on the part of the community at large equal the joint cost ; 
in as much as all joint enterprise of the kind that looks to 
material advantage works by one or another method of 
inhibition and takes effect, if at all, by lowering the ag- 
gregate efficiency of the several countries concerned, with 
a view to the differential gain of one at the cost of another. 
So. e. g., a protective tariff is plainly a conspiracy in re- 
straint of trade, with a view to benefit the conspirators by 
hindering their competitors. The aggregate cost to the 
community at large of such an enterprise in retardation is 
always more than the gains it brings to those who may 
benefit by it. 

In so speaking of the uses to which the common man's 
patriotic devotion may be turned, there is no intention 
to underrate its intrinsic value as a genial and generous 
trait of human nature. Doubtless it is best and chiefly to 
be appreciated as a spiritual quality that beautifies and en- 
nobles its bearer, and that endows him with the full 
stature of manhood, quite irrespective of ulterior con- 
siderations. So it is to be conceded without argument 
that this patriotic animus is a highly meritorious frame 
of mind, and that it has an aesthetic value scarcely to be 
overstated in the farthest stretch of poetic license. But 
the question of its serviceability to the modern commu- 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 55 

nity, in any other than this decorative respect, and par- 
ticularly its serviceability to the current needs of the com- 
mon man in such a modern community, is not touched 
by such an admission; nor does this recognition of its 
generous spiritual nature afford any help toward answer- 
ing a further question as to how and with what effect this 
animus may be turned to account by anyone who is in 
position to make use of the forces which it sets free. 

Among Christian nations there still is, on the whole, a 
decided predilection for that ancient and authentic line of 
national repute that springs from warlike prowess. This 
repute for warlike prowess is what first comes to mind 
among civilised peoples when speaking of national great- 
ness. And among those who have best preserved this 
warlike ideal of worth, the patriotic ambition is likely to 
converge on the prestige of their sovereign; so that it 
takes the concrete form of personal loyalty to a master, 
and so combines or coalesces with a servile habit of mind. 

But peace hath its victories no less renowned than war, 
it is said ; and peaceable folk of a patriotic temper have 
learned to make the best of their meager case and have 
found self-complacency in these victories of the peace- 
able order. So it may broadly be affirmed that all nations 
look with complacency on their own peculiar Culture 
the organised complex of habits of thought and of con- 
duct by which their own routine of life is regulated as 
being in some way worthier than the corresponding hab- 
its of their neighbors. The case of the German Culture 
has latterly come under a strong light in this way. But 
while it may be that no other nation has been so naive 
as to make a concerted profession of faith to the effect 
that their own particular way of life is altogether com- 
mendable and is the only fashion of civilisation that is 

56 On the Nature of Peace 

fit to survive ; yet it will scarcely be an extravagance to 
assert that in their own secret mind these others, too, are 
blest with much the same consciousness of unique worth. 
Conscious virtue of this kind is a good and sufficient 
ground for patriotic inflation, so far as it goes. It com- 
monly does not go beyond a defensive attitude, however. 
JSTow and again, as in the latterday German animation on 
this head, these phenomena of national use and wont may 
come to command such a degree of popular admiration as 
will incite to an aggressive or proselyting campaign. 

In all this there is nothing of a self-seeking or covetous 
kind. The common man who so lends himself to the 
aggressive enhancement of the national Culture and its 
prestige has nothing of a material kind to gain from the 
increase of renown that so comes to his sovereign, his 
language, his countrymen's art or science, his dietary, or 
his God. There are no sordid motives in all this. These 
spiritual assets of self-complacency are, indeed, to be 
rated as grounds of high-minded patriotism without after- 
thought. These aspirations and enthusiasms would per- 
haps be rated as Quixotic by men whose horizon is bound- 
ed by ttye main chance ; but they make up that substance 
of things hoped for that inflates those headlong patriotic 
animosities that stir universal admiration. 

So also, men find an invidious distinction in such mat- 
ters of physical magnitude as their country's area, the 
number of its population, the size of its cities, the ex- 
tent of its natural resources, its aggregate wealth and its 
wealth per capita, its merchant marine and its foreign 
trade. As a ground of invidious complacency these phe- 
nomena of physical magnitude and pecuniary traffic are 
no better and no worse than such immaterial assets as 
the majesty of the sovereign or the perfections of the 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 57 

language. They are matters in which the common man 
is concerned only by the accident of domicile, and his only 
connection with these things is an imaginary joint interest 
in their impressiveness. To these things he has contrib- 
uted substantially nothing, and from them he derives no 
other merit or advantage than a patriotic inflation. He 
takes pride in these things in an invidious way, and there 
is no good reason why he should not; just as there is also 
no good reason why he should, apart from the fact that 
the common man is so constituted that he, mysteriously, 
takes pride in these things that concern him not. 

Of the several groups or classes of persons within the 
political frontiers, whose particular interests run system- 
atically at cross purposes with those of the community 
at large under modern conditions, the class of masters, 
rulers, authorities, or whatever term may seem most 
suitable to designate that category of persons whose char- 
acteristic occupation is to give orders and command def- 
erence, of the several orders and conditions of men 
these are, in point of substantial njotive and interest, most 
patently at variance with all the rest, or with the fortunes 
of the common man. The class will include civil and 
military authorities and whatever nobility there is of a 
prescriptive and privileged kind. The substantial inter- 
est of these classes in the common welfare is of the same 
kind as the interest which a parasite has in the well-being 
of his host; a sufficiently substantial interest, no doubt, 
but there is in this relation nothing like a community of 
interest. Any gain on the part of the community at large 
will materially serve the needs of this group of per- 
sonages, only in so far as it may afford them a larger 
volume or a wider scope for what has in latterday col- 

58 On the Nature of Peace 

loquial phrase been called "graft." These personages 
are, of course, not to be spoken of with disrespect or 
with the slightest inflection of discourtesy. They are all 
honorable men. Indeed they afford the conventional pat- 
tern of human dignity and meritorious achievement, and 
the "Fountain of Honor" is found among them. The 
point of the argument is only that their material or other 
self-regarding interests are of such a nature as to be fur- 
thered by the material wealth of the community, and 
more particularly by the increasing volume of the body 
politic; but only with the proviso that this material 
wealth and this increment of power must accrue without 
anything like a corresponding cost to this class. At the 
same time, since this class of the superiors is in some 
degree a specialised organ of prestige, so that their value, 
and therefore their tenure, both in the eyes of the commu- 
nity and in their own eyes, is in the main a "prestige 
value" and a tenure by prestige, and since the prestige 
that invests their persons is a shadow cast by the putative 
worth of the community at large, it follows that their 
particular interest in the joint prestige is peculiarly alert 
and insistent. But it follows also that these personages 
cannot of their own substance or of their own motion 
contribute to this collective prestige in the same propor- 
tion in which it is necessary for them to draw on it in 
support of their own prestige value. It would, in other 
words, be a patent absurdity to call on any of the cur- 
rent ruling classes, dynasties, nobility, military and diplo- 
matic corps, in any of the nations of Europe, e. g., to pre- 
serve their current dignity and command the deference 
that is currently accorded them, by recourse to their own 
powers and expenditure of their own substance, without 
the usufruct of the commonalty whose organ of dignity 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 59 

they are. The current prestige value which they enjoy is 
beyond their unaided powers to create or maintain, with- 
out the usufruct of the community. Such an enterprise 
does not lie within the premises of the case. 

In this bearing, therefore, the first concern with which 
these personages are necessarily occupied is the procure- 
ment and retention of a suitable usufruct in the material 
resources and good-will of a sufficiently large and indus- 
trious population. The requisite good-will in these prem- 
ises is called loyalty, and its retention by the line of per- 
sonages that so trade on prestige rests on a superinduced 
association of ideas, whereby the national honor comes to 
be confounded in popular apprehension with the prestige 
of these personages who have the keeping of it. But the 
potentates and the establishments, civil and military, on 
whom this prestige value rests will unavoidably come into 
invidious comparison with others of their kind ; and, as 
invariably happens in matters of invidious comparison, 
the emulative needs of all the competitors for prestige are 
"indefinitely extensible/' as the phrase of the economists 
has it. Each and several of them incontinently needs a 
further increment of prestige, and therefore also a fur- 
ther increment of the material assets in men and re- 
sources that are needful as ways and means to assert and 
augment the national honor. 

It is true, the notion that their prestige value is in any 
degree conditioned by the material circumstances and the 
popular imagination of the underlying nation is distaste- 
ful to many of these vicars of the national honor. They 
will incline rather to the persuasion that this prestige 
value is a distinctive attribute, of a unique order, in- 
trinsic to their own persons. But, plainly, any such de- 
tached line of magnates, notables, kings and mandarins, 

60 On the Nature of Peace 

resting their notability on nothing more substantial than 
a slightly sub-normal intelligence and a moderately scrof- 
ulous habit of body could not long continue to command 
that eager deference that is accounted their due. Such 
a picture of majesty would be sadly out of drawing. 
There is little conviction and no great dignity to be drawn 
from the unaided pronouncement: 

"We're here because, 

"We're here because, 

"We're here because, 

"We're here," 

even when the doggerel is duly given the rhetorical bene- 
fit of a "Tenure by the Grace of God/' The personages 
that carry this dignity require the backing of a deter- 
mined and patriotic populace in support of their prestige 
value, and they commonly have no great difficulty in pro- 
curing it. And their prestige value is, in effect, propor- 
tioned to the volume of material resources and patriotic 
credulity that can be drawn on for its assertion. It is 
true, their draught on the requisite sentimental and pe- 
cuniary support is fortified with large claims of service- 
ability to the common good, and these claims are some- 
what easily, indeed eagerly, conceded and acted upon; 
although the alleged benefit to the common good will 
scarcely be visible except in the light of glory shed by the 
blazing torch of patriotism. 

In so far as it is of a material nature the benefit which 
the constituted authorities so engage to contribute to the 
common good, or in other words to confer on the com- 
mon man, falls under two heads : defense against aggres- 
sion from without; and promotion of the community's 
material gain. It is to be presumed that the constituted 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 61 

authorities commonly believe more or less implicitly in 
their own professions in so professing to serve the needs 
of the common man in these respects. The common de- 
fense is a sufficiently grave matter, and doubtless it claims 
the best affections and endeavor of the citizen; but it is 
not a matter that should claim much attention at this 
point in the argument, as bearing on the service rendered 
the common man by the constituted authorities, taken one 
with another. Any given governmental establishment 
at home is useful in this respect only as against another 
governmental establishment elsewhere. So that on the 
slightest examination it resolves itself into a matter of 
competitive patriotic enterprise, as between the patriotic 
aspirations of different nationalities led by different gov- 
ernmental establishments; and the service so rendered 
by the constituted authorities in the aggregate takes on 
the character of a remedy for evils of their own creation. 
It is invariably a defense against the concerted aggres- 
sions of other patriots. Taken in the large, the com- 
mon defense of any given nation becomes a detail of the 
competitive struggle between rival nationalities animated 
with a common spirit of patriotic enterprise and led by 
authorities constituted for this competitive purpose. 

Except on a broad basis of patriotic devotion, and ex- 
cept under the direction of an ambitious governmental 
establishment, no serious international aggression is to 
be had. The common defense, therefore, is to be taken 
as a remedy for evils arising out of the working of the 
patriotic spirit that animates mankind, as brought to bear 
under a discretionary authority ; and in any balance to be 
struck between the utility and disutility of this patriotic 
spirit and of its service in the hands of the constituted 
authorities, it will have to be cancelled out as being at 

62 On the Nature of Peace 

the best a mitigation of some of the disorders brought on 
by the presence of national governments resting on patri- 
otic loyalty at large. 

But this common defense is by no means a vacant ru- 
bric in any attempted account of modern national enter- 
prise. It is the commonplace and conclusive plea of the 
dynastic statesmen and the aspiring warlords, and it is 
the usual blind behind which events are put in train for 
eventual hostilities. Preparation for the common de- 
fense also appears unfailingly to eventuate in hostilities. 
With more or less bona fides the statesmen and warriors 
plead the cause of the common defense, and with patri- 
otic alacrity the common man lends himself to the enter- 
prise aimed at under that cover. In proportion as the 
resulting equipment for defense grows great and becomes 
formidable, the range of items which a patriotically biased 
nation are ready to include among the claims to be de- 
fended grows incontinently larger, until by the overlap- 
ping of defensive claims between rival nationalities the 
distinction between defense and aggression disappears, 
except in the biased fancy of the rival patriots. 

Of Course, no reflections are called for here on the 
current American campaign of "Preparedness." Except 
for the degree of hysteria it appears to differ in no sub- 
stantial respect from the analogous course of auto-intox- 
ication among the nationalities of Europe, which came 
to a head in the current European situation. It should 
conclusively serve the turn for any self-possessed ob- 
server to call to mind that all the civilised nations of 
warring Europe are, each and several, convinced that 
they are fighting a defensive war. 

The aspiration of all right-minded citizens is presumed 
to be "Peace with Honor." So that first, as well as last, 

On tht Nature and Uses of Patriotism 63 

among those national interests that are to be defended, 
and in the service of which the substance and affections 
of the common man are enlisted under the aegis of the 
national prowess, comes the national prestige, as a matter 
of course. And the constituted authorities are doubt- 
less sincere and single-minded in their endeavors to ad- 
vance and defend the national honor, particularly those 
constituted authorities that hold their place of authority 
on grounds of fealty ; since the national prestige in such 
a case coalesces with the prestige of the nation's ruler in 
much the same degree in which the national sovereignty 
devolves upon the person of its ruler. In so defending 
or advancing the national prestige, such, a dynastic or 
autocratic overlord, together with the other privileged 
elements assisting and dependent on him, is occupied 
with his own interest ; his own tenure is a tenure by pres- 
tige, and the security of his tenure lies in the continued 
maintenance of that popular fancy that invests his person 
with this national prestige and so constitutes him and 
his retinue of notables and personages its keeper. 

But it is uniformly insisted by the statesmen poten- 
tates, notables, kings and mandarins that this aegis of 
the national prowess in their hands covers also many 
interests of a more substantial and more tangible kind. 
These other, more tangible interests of the community 
have also a value of a direct and personal sort to the 
dynasty and its hierarchy of privileged subalterns, in 
that it is only by use of the material forces of the nation 
that the dynastic prestige can be advanced and maintained. 
The interest of such constituted authorities in the material 
welfare of the nation is consequently grave and insistent ; 
but it is evidently an interest of a special kind and is sub- 
ject to strict and peculiar limitations. The common good, 

64 On the Nature of Peace 

in the material respect, interests the dynastic statesman 
only as a means to dynastic ends ; that is to say, only in so 
far as it can be turned to account in the achievement of 
dynastic aims. These aims are "The Kingdom the Power 
and the Glory," as the sacred formula phrases the same 
conception in another bearing. 

That is to say, the material welfare of the nation is 
a means to the unfolding of the dynastic power ; provided 
always that this material welfare is not allowed to run in- 
to such ramifications as will make the commonwealth an 
unwieldy instrument in the hands of the dynastic states- 
men. National welfare is to the purpose only in so far 
as it conduces to political success, which is always a ques- 
tion of warlike success in the last resort. The limitation 
which this consideration imposes on the government's 
economic policy are such as will make the nation a self- 
sufficient or self-balanced economic commonwealth. It 
must be a self-balanced commonwealth at least in such 
measure as will make it self-sustaining in case of need, 
in all those matters that bear directly on warlike efficiency. 

Of course, no community can become fully self-sustain- 
ing under modern conditions, by use of the modern state 
of the industrial arts, except by recourse to such drastic 
measures of repression as would reduce its total efficiency 
in an altogether intolerable degree. This will hold true 
even of those nations who, like Russia or the United 
States, are possessed of extremely extensive territories 
and extremely large and varied resources ; but it applies 
with greatly accentuated force to smaller and more scan- 
tily furnished territorial units. Peoples living under mod- 
ern conditions and by use of the modern state of the in- 
dustrial arts necessarily draw on all quarters of the habit- 
able globe for materials and products which they can pro- 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 65 

cure to the best advantage from outside their own special 
field so long as they are allowed access to these outlying 
sources of supply; and any arbitrary limitation on this 
freedom of traffic makes the conditions of life that much 
harder, and lowers the aggregate efficiency of the com- 
munity by that much. National self-sufficiency is to be 
achieved only by a degree of economic isolation; and 
such a policy of economic isolation involves a degree of 
impoverishment and lowered efficiency, but it will also 
leave the nation readier for warlike enterprise on such 
a scale as its reduced efficiency will compass. 

So that the best that can be accomplished along this 
line by the dynastic statesmen is a shrewd compromise, 
embodying such a degree of isolation and inhibition as 
will leave the country passably self-sufficient in case of 
need, without lowering the national efficiency to such a 
point as to cripple its productive forces beyond what will 
be offset by the greater warlike readiness that is so at- 
tained. The point to which such a policy of isolation and 
sufficiency will necessarily be directed is that measure of 
inhibition that will yield the most facile and effective ways 
and means of warlike enterprise, the largest product of 
warlike effectiveness to be had on multiplying the nation's 
net efficiency into its readiness to take the field. 

Into any consideration of this tactical problem a cer- 
tain subsidiary factor enters, in that the patriotic temper 
of the nation is always more or less affected by such an 
economic policy. The greater the degree of effectual 
isolation and discrimination embodied in the national 
policy, the greater will commonly be its effect on popu- 
lar sentiment in the way of national animosity and spirit- 
ual self-sufficiency ; which may be an asset of great value 
for the purposes of warlike enterprise. 

66 On the Nature of reace 

Plainly, any dynastic statesman who should undertake 
to further the common welfare regardless of its service- 
ability for warlike enterprise would be defeating his own 
purpose. He would, in effect, go near to living up to 
his habitual professions touching international peace, in- 
stead of professing to live up to them, as the exigencies 
of his national enterprise now conventionally require him 
to do. In effect, he would be functus officio. 

There are two great administrative instruments avail- 
able for this work of repression and national self-suffi- 
ciency at the hands of the imperialistic statesman : the pro- 
tective tariff, and commercial subvention. The two are 
not consistently to be distinguished from one another at 
all points, and each runs out into a multifarious convolu- 
tion of variegated details ; but the principles involved are, 
after all, fairly neat and consistent. The former is of the 
nature of a conspiracy in restraint of trade by repression ; 
the latter, a consipiracy to the like effect by subsidised 
monopoly ; both alike act to check the pursuit of industry 
in given lines by artificially increasing the cost of pro- 
duction for given individuals or classes of producers, and 
both alike impose a more than proportionate cost on the 
community within which they take effect. Incidentally, 
both of these methods of inhibition bring a degree, though 
a less degree, of hardship, to the rest of the industrial 

All this is matter of course to all economic students, and 
it should, reasonably, be plain to all intelligent persons; 
but its voluble denial by interested parties, as well as 
the easy credulity with which patriotic citizens allow 
themselves to accept the sophistries offered in defense of 
these measures of inhibition, has made it seem worth 
while here to recall these commonplaces of economic 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 67 

The ground of this easy credulity is not so much in- 
firmity of intellect as it is an exuberance of sentiment, 
although it may reasonably be believed that its more pro- 
nounced manifestations as, e. g., the high protective 
tariff can be had only by force of a formidable coopera- 
tion of the two. The patriotic animus is an invidious sen- 
timent of joint prestige; and it needs no argument or 
documentation to bear out the affirmation that its bias will 
lend a color of merit and expediency to any proposed 
measure that can, however speciously, promise an in- 
crease of national power or prestige. So that when the 
statesmen propose a policy of inhibition and mitigated 
isolation on the professed ground that such a policy will 
strengthen the nation economically by making it econo- 
mically self-supporting, as well as ready for any warlike 
adventure, the patriotic citizen views the proposed meas- 
ures through the rosy haze of national aspirations and 
lets the will to believe persuade him that whatever con- 
duces to a formidable national battle front will also con- 
tribute to the common good. At the same time all these 
national conspiracies in restraint of trade are claimed, 
with more or less reason, to inflict more or less harm on 
rival nationalities with whom economic relations are 
curtailed; and patriotism being an invidious sentiment, 
the patriotic citizen finds comfort in the promise of mis- 
chief to these others, and is all the more prone to find 
all kinds of merit in proposals that look to such an invid- 
ious outcome. In any community imbued with an alert 
patriotic spirit, the fact that any given circumstances, oc- 
curence or transaction can be turned to account as a 
means of invidious distinction or invidious discrimination 
against humanity beyond the national pale, will always 
go far to procure acceptance of it as being also an article 

68 On the Nature of Peace 

of substantial profit to the community at large, even 
though the slightest unbiased scrutiny would find it of no 
ascertainable use in any other bearing than that of invid- 
ious mischief. And whatever will bear interpretation as 
an increment of the nation's power or prowess, in com- 
parison with rival nationalities, will always be securely 
counted as an item of joint credit, and will be made to 
serve the collective conceit as an invidious distinction; 
and patriotic credulity will find it meritorious also in other 

So, e. g., it is past conception that such a patent im- 
becility as a protective tariff should enlist the support of 
any ordinarily intelligent community except by the help 
of some such chauvinistic sophistry. So also, the various 
royal establishments of Europe, e. g., afford an extreme 
but therefore all the more convincing illustration of the 
same logical fallacy. These establishments and person- 
ages are great and authentic repositories of national pres- 
tige, and they are therefore unreflectingly presumed by 
their several aggregations of subjects to be of some sub- 
stantial use also in some other bearing; but it would be a 
highly diverting exhibition of credulity for any outsider to 
fall into that amazing misconception. But the like is mani- 
festly true of commercial turnover and export trade 
among modern peoples; although on this head the in- 
fatuation is so ingrained and dogmatic that even a rank 
outsider is expected to accept the fallacy without reflec- 
tion, on pain of being rated as unsafe or unsound. Such 
matters again, as the dimensions of the national territory, 
or the number of the population and the magnitude of the 
national resources, are still and have perhaps always been 
material for patriotic exultation, and are fatuously believ- 
ed to have some great significance for the material for- 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 69 

tunes of the common man ; although it should be plain on 
slight reflection that under modern conditions of owner- 
ship, these things, one and all, are of no consequence to 
the common man except as articles of prestige to stimulate 
his civic pride. The only conjuncture under which these 
and the like national holdings can come to have a mean- 
ing as joint or collective assets would arise in case of a 
warlike adventure carried to such extremities as would 
summarily cancel vested rights of ownership and turn 
them to warlike uses. While the rights of ownership hold, 
the common man, who does not own these things, draws 
no profit from their inclusion in the national domain; 
indeed, he is at some cost to guarantee their safe tenure 
by their rightful owners. 

In so pursuing their quest of the Kingdom, the Power 
and the Glory, by use of the national resources and by 
sanction of the national spirit, the constituted authorities 
also assume the guardianship of sundry material interests 
that are presumed to touch the common good; such as 
security of person and property in dealings with aliens, 
whether at home or abroad; security of investment and 
trade, and vindication of their citizens before the law in 
foreign parts ; and, chiefly and ubiquitously, furtherance 
and extension of the national trade into foreign parts, 
particularly of the export trade, on terms advantageous to 
the traders of the nation. 

The last named of these advantages is the one on which 
stress is apt to fall in the argument of all those who 
advocate an unfolding of national power, as being a mat- 
ter of vital material benefit to the common man. The 
other items indicated above, it is plain on the least re- 
flection, are matters of slight if any material consequence 
to him. The common man that is ninety-nine and a 

70 On the Nature of Peace 

fraction in one hundred of the nation's common men 
has no dealings with aliens in foreign parts, as capitalist, 
trader, missionary or wayfaring man, and has no occasion 
for security of person or property under circumstances 
that raise any remotest question of the national prowess 
or the national prestige; nor does he seek or aspire to 
trade to foreign parts on any terms, equitable or other- 
wise, or to invest capital among aliens under foreign rule, 
or to exploit concessions or take orders, for acceptance 
or delivery; nor, indeed, does he at all commonly come 
into even that degree of contact with abroad that is im- 
plied in the purchase of foreign securities. Virtually the 
sole occasion on which he comes in touch with the world 
beyond the frontier is when, and if, he goes away from 
home as an emigrant, and so ceases to enjoy the tutelage 
of the nation's constituted authorities. But the common 
man, in point of fact, is a home-keeping body, who touches 
foreign parts and aliens outside the national frontiers 
only at the second or third remove, if at all, in the oc- 
casional purchase of foreign products, or in the sale of 
goods that may find their way abroad after he has lost 
sight of them. The exception to this general rule would 
be found in the case of those under-sized nations that 
are too small to contain the traffic in which their common- 
place population are engaged, and that have neither 
national prowess nor national prestige to fall back on 
in a conceivable case of need, and whose citizens, in- 
dividually, appear to be as fortunately placed in their 
workday foreign relations, without a background of 
prowess and prestige, as the citizens of the great powers 
who are most abundantly provided in these respects. 

With wholly negligible exceptions, these matters touch 
the needs or the sensibilities of the common man only 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 71 

through the channel of the national honor, which may be 
injured in the hardships suffered by his compatriots in 
foreign parts, or which may, again, be repaired or en- 
hanced by the meritorious achievements of the same 
compatriots ; of whose existence he will commonly have 
no other or more substantial evidence, and in whose traffic 
he has no share other than this vicarious suffering of 
vague and remote indignity or vainglory by force of the 
wholly fortuitous circumstance that they are (inscrutably) 
his compatriots: These immaterial goods of vicarious 
prestige are, of course, not to be undervalued, nor is the 
fact to be overlooked or minimised that they enter into 
the sum total of the common citizen's "psychic income," 
for whatever they may foot up to; but evidently their 
consideration takes us back to the immaterial category 
of prestige value, from which the argument just now was 
hopefully departing with a view to consideration of the 
common man's material interest in that national enter- 
prise about which patriotic aspirations turn. 

These things, then, are matters in which the common 
man has an interest only as they have a prestige value. 
But there need be no question as to their touching his sen- 
sibilities and stirring him to action, and even to acts of 
bravery and self-sacrifice. Indignity or ill treatment of 
his compatriots in foreign parts, even when well deserved, 
as is not infrequently the case, are resented with a 
vehemence that is greatly to the common man's credit, 
and greatly also to the gain of those patriotic statesmen 
who find in such grievances their safest and most reliable 
raw materials for the production of international difficul- 
ty. That he will so respond to the stimulus of these, 
materially speaking irrelevant, vicissitudes of good or 
ill that touch the fortunes of his compatriots, as known to 

72 On the Nature of Peace 

him by hearsay, bears witness, of course, to the high qual- 
ity of his manhood; but it falls very far short of arguing 
that these promptings of his patriotic spirit have any value 
as traits that count toward his livelihood or his economic 
serviceability in the community in which he lives. It 
is all to his credit, and it goes to constitute him a desir- 
able citizen, in the sense that he is properly amenable to 
the incitements of patriotic emulation; but it is none 
the less to be admitted, however reluctantly, that this 
trait of impulsively vicarious indignation or vainglory is 
neither materially profitable to himself nor an asset of the 
slightest economic value to the community in which he 
lives. Quite the contrary, in fact. So also is it true that 
the common man derives no material advantage from the 
national success along this line, though he commonly be- 
lieves that it all somehow inures to his benefit. It would 
seem that an ingrown bias of community interest, blurred 
and driven by a jealously sensitive patriotic pride, bends 
his faith uncritically to match his inclination. His per- 
suasion is a work of preconception rather than of percep- 

But the most substantial and most unqualified material 
benefit currently believed to be derivable from a large 
unfolding of national prowess and a wide extension of 
the national domain is an increased volume of the nation's 
foreign trade, particularly of the export trade. "Trade 
follows the Flag." And this larger trade and enhanced 
profit is presumed to inure to the joint benefit of the 
citizens. Such is the profession of faith of the sagacious 
statesmen and such is also the unreflecting belief of the 
common man. 

It may be left an open question if an unfolding of nat- 
ional prowess and prestige increases the nation's trade, 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 73 

whether in imports or in exports. There is no available 
evidence that it has any effect of the kind. What is not 
an open question is the patent fact that such an extension 
of trade confers no benefit on the common man, who is not 
engaged in the import or export business. More particu- 
larly does it yield him no advantage at all commensurate 
with the cost involved in any endeavor so to increase the 
volume of trade by increasing the nation's power and 
extending its dominion. The profits of trade go not to 
the common man at large but to the traders whose capital 
is invested; and it is a completely idle matter to the 
common citizen whether the traders who profit by the 
nations trade are his compatriots or not. 1 

The pacifist argument on the economic futility of 
national ambitions will commonly rest its case at this 
point; having shown as unreservedly as need be that 
national ambition and all its works belong of right under 
that rubric of the litany that speaks of Fire, Flood and 
Pestilence. But an hereditary bent of human nature is 
not to be put out of the way with an argument showing 
that it has its disutilities. So with the patriotic animus; 
it is a factor to be counted with, rather than to be ex- 

As has been remarked above, in the course of time 
and change the advance of the industrial arts and of the 
institutions of ownership have taken such a turn that 
the working system of industry and business no longer 
runs on national lines and, indeed, no longer takes ac- 
count of national frontiers, except in so far as the 

this, which should be plain without demonstration, has 
been repeatedly shown in the expositions of various peace ad- 
vocates, typically by Mr, Angell. 

74 On the Nature of Peace 

national policies and legislation arbitrarily and partially, 
impose these frontiers on the workings of trade and in- 
dustry. The effect of such regulation for political ends 
is, with wholly negligible exceptions, detrimental to the 
efficient working of the industrial system under modern 
conditions ; and it is therefore deterimental to the material 
interests of the common citizen. But the case is not the 
same as regards the interests of the traders. Trade is 
a competitive affair, and it is to the advantage of the 
traders engaged in any given line of business to extend 
their own markets and to exclude competing traders. 
Competition may be the soul of trade, but monopoly is 
necessarily the aim of every trader. And the national 
organisation is of service to its traders in so far as it 
shelters them, wholly or partly, from the competition of 
traders of other nationalities, or in so far as it furthers 
their enterprise by subvention or similar privileges as 
against their competitors, whether at home or abroad. 
The gain that so comes to the nation's traders from any 
preferential advantage afforded them by national regula- 
tions, or from any discrimination against traders of for- 
eign nationality, goes to the traders as private gain. It 
is of no benefit to any of their compatriots ; since there 
is no community of usufruct that touches these gains of 
the traders. So far as concerns his material advantage, 
it is an idle matter to the common citizen whether he 
deals with traders of his own nationality or with aliens ; 
both alike will aim to buy cheap and sell dear, and will 
charge him "what the traffic will bear," Nor does it 
matter to him whether the gains of this trade go to aliens 
or to his compatriots; in either case equally they im- 
mediately pass beyond his reach, and are equally re- 
moved from any touch of joint interest on his part. Being 

On the Nature and Uses of Patriotism 75 

private property, under modern law and custom he has 
no use of them, whether a national frontier does or does 
not intervene between his domicile and that of their 

These are facts that every man of sound mind knows 
and acts on without doubt or hesitation in his own work- 
day affairs. He would scarcely even find amusement in so 
futile a proposal as that his neighbor should share his 
business profits with him for no better reason than that 
he is a compatriot. But when the matter is presented as 
a proposition in national policy and embroidered with an 
invocation of his patriotic loyalty the common citizen will 
commonly be found credulous enough to accept the 
sophistry without abatement. His archaic sense of group 
solidarity will still lead him at his own cost to favor his 
trading compatriots by the imposition of onerous trade 
regulations for their private advantage, and to interpose 
obstacles in the way of alien traders. All this ingenious 
policy of self-defeat is greatly helped out by the patriotic 
conceit of the citizens ; who persuade themselves to see in 
it an accession to the power and prestige of their own 
nation and a disadvantage to rival nationalities. It is, 
indeed, more than doubtful if such a policy of self-defeat 
as is embodied in current international trade discrimina- 
tions could be insinuated into the legislation of any civil- 
ized nation if the popular intelligence were not so clouded 
with patriotic animosity as to let a prospective detriment 
to their foreign neighbors count as a gain to themselves. 

So that the chief material use of the patriotic bent in 
modern populations, therefore, appears to be its use to a 
limited class of persons engaged in foreign trade, or in 
business that comes in competition with foreign industry. 
It serves their private gain by lending effectual counte- 

76 On the Nature of Peace 

nance to such restraint of international trade as would not 
be tolerated within the national domain. In so doing it 
has also the secondary and more sinister effect of dividing 
the nations on lines of rivalry and setting up irreconcil- 
able claims and ambitions, of no material value but of 
far-reaching effect in the way of provocation to further 
international estrangement and eventual breach of the 

How all this falls in with the schemes of militant states- 
men, and further reacts on the freedom and personal 
fortunes of the common man, is an extensive and intricate 
topic, though not an obscure one ; and it has already been 
spoken of above, perhaps as fully as need be. 

Chapter III 


The considerations feet out in earlier chapters have 
made it appear that the patriotic spirit of modern peoples 
is the abiding source of contention among nations. Ex- 
cept for their patriotism a breach of the peace among mod- 
ern peoples could not well be had. So much will doubtless 
be assented to as a matter of course. It is also a common- 
place of current aphoristic wisdom that both parties to a 
warlike adventure in modern times stand to lose, materi- 
ally; whatever nominal that is to say political gains 
may be made by one or the other. It has also appeared 
from these considerations recited in earlier passages 
that this patriotic spirit prevails throughout, among all 
civilised peoples, and that it pervades one nation about 
as ubiquitously as another. Nor is there much evidence 
of a weakening of this sinister proclivity with the pas- 
sage of time or the continued advance in the arts of life. 
The only civilized nations that can be counted on as 
habitually peaceable are those who are so feeble or are 
so placed as to be cut off from hope of gain through con- 
tention. Vainglorious arrogance may run at a higher ten- 
sion among the more backward and boorish nations ; but 
it is not evident that the advance guard among the civil- 
ised peoples are imbued with a less complete national self- 
complacency. If the peace is to be kept, therefore, it will 
have to be kept by and between peoples made up, in effect, 


78 On the Nature of Peace 

of complete patriots ; which comes near being a contradic- 
tion in terms. Patriotism is useful for breaking the peace, 
not for keeping it. It makes for national pretensions and 
international jealously and distrust, with warlike enter- 
prise always in perspective; as a way to national gain 
or a recourse in case of need. And there is commonly 
no settled demarkation between these two contrasted 
needs that urge a patriotic people forever to keep one eye 
on the chance of a recourse to arms. 

Therefore any calculus of the Chances of Peace ap- 
pears to become a reckoning of the forces which may be 
counted on to keep a patriotic nation in an unstable equi- 
librium of peace for the time being. As has just been 
remarked above, among civilised peoples only those na- 
tions can be counted on consistently to keep the peace who 
are so feeble or otherwise so placed as to be cut off from 
hope of national gain. And these can apparently be 
so counted on only as regards aggression, not as regards 
the national defense, and only in so far as they are not 
drawn into warlike enterprise, collectively, by their more 
competent neighbors. Even the feeblest and most futile 
of them feels in honor bound to take up arms in defense 
of such national pretensions as they still may harbor ; and 
all of them harbor such pretensions. In certain ex- 
treme cases, which it might seem individous to specify 
more explicitly, it is not easy to discover any specific 
reasons for the maintenance of a national establish- 
ment, apart from the vindication of certain national pre- 
tensions which would quietly lapse in the absence of a 
national establishment on whom their vindication is in- 

Of the rest, the greater nations that are spoken of as 
Powers, on such general statement will hold. These are 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 79 

the peoples who stand, in matters of national concern, 
on their own initiative; and the question of peace and 
war at large is in effect, a question of peace and war 
among these Powers. They are not so numerous that they 
can be sifted into distinct classes, and yet they differ 
among themselves in such a way that they may, for the 
purpose in hand, fairly be ranged under two distinguish- 
able if not contrasted heads : those which may safely be 
, counted on spontaneously to take the offensive, and those 
which will fight on provocation. Typically of the former 
description are Germany and Japan. Of the latter are the 
French and British, and less confidently the American re- 
public. In any summary statement of this kind Russia will 
have to be left on one side as a doubtful case, for reasons 
to which the argument may return at a later point; the 
prospective course of things in Russia is scarcely to be ap- 
praised on the ground if its past. Spain and Italy, being 
dubious Powers at the best, need not detain the argument ; 
they are, in the nature of things, subsidiaries who wait on 
the main chance. And Austria, with whatever the name 
may cover, is for the immediate purpose to be counted 
under the head of Germany. 

There is no invidious comparison intended in so set- 
ting off these two classes of nations in contrast to one 
another. It is not a contrast of merit and demerit or of 
prestige. Imperial Germany and Imperial Japan are, in 
the nature of things as things go, bent in effect on a 
disturbance of the peace, with a view to advance the 
cause of their own dominion. On a large view of the 
case, such as many German statesmen were in the habit 
of professing in the years preceding the great war, it 
may perhaps appear reasonable to say as they were in the 
habit of saving that these Imperial Powers are as well 

80 On the Nature of Peace 

within the lines of fair and honest dealing in their cam- 
paign of aggression as the other Powers are in taking a 
defensive attitude against their aggression. Some sort 
of international equity has been pleaded in justification 
of their demand for an increased share of dominion. At 
least it has appeared that these Imperial statesmen have 
so persuaded themselves after very mature deliberation ; 
and they have showed great concern to persuade others of 
the equity of their Imperial claim to something more than 
the law would allow. These sagacious, not to say astute, 
persons have not only reached a conviction to this ef- 
fect, but they have become possessed of this conviction in 
such plenary fashion that, in the German case,, they have 
come to admit exceptions or abatement of the claim only 
when and in so far as the campaign of equitable aggres- 
sion on which they had entered has been proved imprac- 
ticable by the fortunes of war. 

With some gift for casuistry one may, at least con- 
ceivably, hold that the felt need of Imperial self -aggran- 
disement may become so urgent as to justify, or at least 
to condone, forcible dispossession of weaker nationalities. 
This might, indeed it has, become a sufficiently perplex- 
ing question of casuistry, both as touches the punctilios 
of national honor and as regards an equitable division be- 
tween rival Powers in respect of the material means of 
mastery. So in private life it may become a moot ques- 
tion in point of equity whether the craving of a klep- 
tomaniac may not on occasion rise to such an intolerable 
pitch of avidity as to justify him in seizing whatever 
valuables he can safely lay hands on, to ease the discom- 
fort of ungratified desire. In private life any such en- 
deavor to better oneself at qne's neighbors 5 cost is not 
commonly reprobated if it takes effect on a decently large 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 81 

scale and shrewdly within the flexibilities of the law or 
with the countenance of its officers. Governing inter- 
national endeavors of this class there is no law so in- 
flexible that it can not be conveniently made over to fit 
particular circumstances. And in the absence of law the 
felt need of a formal justification will necessarily appeal 
to the unformulated equities of the case, with some such 
outcome as alluded to above. All that, of course, is 
for the diplomatists to take care of. 

But any speculation on the equities involved in the 
projected course of empire to which these two enter- 
prising nations are committing themselves must run within 
the lines of diplomatic parable, and will have none but a 
speculative interest. It is not a matter of equity. Ac- 
cepting the situation as it stands, it is evident that any 
peace can only have a qualified meaning, in the sense of 
armistice, so long as there is opportunity for national 
enterprise of the character on which these two enterpris- 
ing national establishments are bent, and so long as these 
and the like national establishments remain. So, taking 
the peaceable professions of their spokesmen at a dis- 
count of one hundred percent, as one necessarily must, 
and looking to the circumstantial evidence of the case, 
it is abundantly plain that at least these two imperial 
Powers may be counted on consistently to manoeuvre for 
warlike advantage so long as any peace compact holds, and 
to break the peace so soon as the strategy of Imperial en- 
terprise appears to require it. 

There has been much courteous make-believe of ami- 
able and upright solicitude on this head the past few 
years, both in diplomatic intercourse and among men out 
of doors; and since make-believe is a matter of course 
in diplomatic intercourse it is right and seemly, of course, 

82 On the Nature of Peace 

that no overt recognition of unavowed facts should be al- 
lowed to traverse this run of make-believe within the 
precincts of diplomatic intercourse. But in any ingenu- 
ous inquiry into the nature of peace and the conditions 
of its maintenance there can be no harm in conveniently 
leaving the diplomatic make-believe on one side and look- 
ing to the circumstances that condition the case, rather 
than to the formal professions designed to mask the cir- 

Chief among the relevant circumstances in the current 
situation are the imperial designs of Germany and Japan. 
These two national establishments are very much alike. 
So much so that for the present purpose a single line of 
analysis will passably cover both cases. The same line 
of analysis will also apply, with slight adaptation, to 
more than one of the other Powers, or near-Powers, of the 
modern world; but in so far as such is held to be the 
case, that is not a consideration that weakens the argument 
as applied to these two, which are to be taken as the con- 
summate type-form of a species of national establish- 
ments. They are, between them, the best instance there 
is of what may be called a Dynastic State. 

Except as a possible corrective of internal disorders 
and discontent, neither of the two States "desires" war ; 
but both are bent on dominion, and as the dominion aimed 
at is not to be had except by fighting for it, both in effect 
are incorrigibly bent on warlike enterprise. And in 
neither case will considerations of equity, humanity, de- 
cency, veracity, or the common good be allowed to trouble 
the quest of dominion. As lies in the nature of the 
dynastic State, imperial dominion, in the ambitions of 
both, is beyond price ; so that no cost is too high so long 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 83 

as ultimate success attends the imperial enterprise. So 
much is commonplace knowledge among all men who are 
at all conversant with the facts. 

To anyone who harbors a lively sentimental prejudice 
for or against either or both of the two nations so spoken 
of, or for or against the manner of imperial enterprise to 
which both are committed, it may seem that what has 
just been said of them and their relation to the world's 
peace runs on something of a bias and conveys something 
of dispraise and reprobation. Such is not the intention, 
however, though the appearance is scarcely to be avoided. 
It is necessary for the purposes of the argument unam- 
biguously to recognise the nature of these facts with which 
the inquiry is concerned ; and any plain characterisation 
of the facts will unavoidably carry a fringe of sugges- 
tions of this character, because current speech is adapted 
for their reprobation. The point aimed at is not this 
inflection of approval or disapproval. The facts are to 
be taken impersonally for what they are worth in their 
causal bearing on the chance of peace or war ; not at their 
sentimental value as traits of conduct to be appraised in 
point of their goodness or expediency. 

So seen without prejudice, then, if that may be, this 
Imperial enterprise of these two Powers is to be rated as 
the chief circumstance bearing on the chances of peace and 
conditioning the terms on which any peace plan must be 
drawn. Evidently, in the presence of these two Imperial 
Powers any peace compact will be in a precarious case; 
equally so whether either or both of them are parties 
to such compact or not. No engagement binds a dynastic 
stateman in case it turns out not to further the dynastic 
enterprise. The question then recurs : How may peace 
be maintained within the horizon of German or Japanese 

84 On the Nature of Peace 

ambitions? There are two obvious alternatives, neither 
of which promises an easy way out of the quandary in 
which the world's peace is placed by their presence: Sub- 
mission to their dominion, or Elimination of these two 
Powers. Either alternative would offer a sufficiently de- 
terrent outlook, and yet any project for devising some 
middle course of conciliation and amicable settlement, 
which shall be practicable and yet serve the turn, scarcely 
has anything better to promise. The several nations now 
engaged on a war with the greater of these Imperial 
Powers hold to a design of elimination, as being the only 
measure that merits hopeful consideration. The Imperial 
Power in distress bespeaks peace and goodwill. 

Those advocates, whatever their nationality, who speak 
for negotiation with a view to a peace compact which is 
to embrace these States intact, are aiming, in effect, to 
put things in train for ultimate submission to the mastery 
of these Imperial Powers. In these premises an ami- 
cable settlement and a compact of perpetual peace will 
necessarily be equivalent to arranging a period of re- 
cuperation and recruiting for a new onset of dynastic 
enterprise. For, in the nature of the case, no compact 
binds the dynastic statesman, and no consideration other 
than the pursuit of Imperial dominion commands his at- 

There is, of course, no intention to decry this single- 
mindedness that is habitually put in evidence by the 
dynastic statesmen. Nor should it be taken as evidence 
of moral obliquity in them. It is rather the result of a 
peculiar moral attitude or bent, habitual to such states- 
men, and in its degree also habitual to their compatriots, 
and is indispensably involved in the Imperial frame of 
mind. The consummation of Imperial mastery being the 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 85 

highest and ubiquitously ulterior end of all endeavor, its 
pursuit not only relieves its votaries from the observance 
of any minor obligations that run counter to its needs, 
but it also imposes a moral obligation to make the most of 
any opportunity for profitable deceit and chicanery that 
may offer. In short, the dynastic statesman is under the 
governance of a higher morality, binding him to the 
service of his nation's ambition or in point of fact, to 
the personal service of his dynastic master to which it is 
his dutiful privilege loyally to devote all his powers of 
force and fraud. 

Democratically-minded persons, who are not moved by 
the call of loyalty to a gratuitous personal master, may 
have some difficulty in appreciating the force and the 
moral austerity of this spirit of devotion to an ideal of 
dynastic aggrandisement, and in seeing how its paramount 
exigence will set aside all meticulous scruples of personal 
rectitude and veracity, as being a shabby with-holding of 
service due. 

To such of these doubters as still have retained some 
remnants of their religious faith this attitude of loyalty 
may perhaps be made intelligible by calling to mind the 
analogous self-surrender of the religious devotee. And 
in this connection it may also be to the purpose to recall 
that in point of its genesis and derivation that unreserved 
self-abasement and surrender to the divine ends and 
guidance, which is the chief grace and glory of the 
true believer, is held by secular students of these matters 
to be only a sublimated analogue or counterfeit of this 
other dutiful abasement that constitutes loyalty to a tem- 
poral master. The deity is currently spoken of as The 
Heavenly King, under whose dominion no sinner has 
a right that He is bound to respect ; very much after the 

86 On the Nature of Peace 

fashion in which no subject of a dynastic state has a 
right which the State is bound to respect. Indeed, all 
these dynastic establishments that so seek the Kingdom, 
the Power and the Glory are surrounded with a penumbra 
of divinity, and it is commonly a bootless question where 
the dynastic powers end and the claims of divinity begin. 
There is something of a coalescence. 1 

The Kaiser holds dominion by divine grace and is ac- 
countable to none but God, if to Him. The whole case 
is in a still better state of repair as touches the Japanese 
establishment, where the Emperor is a lineal descendant of 
the supreme deity, Amaterazu (o mi Kami), and where, 
by consequence, there is no line of cleavage between a 
divine and a secular mastery. Pursuant to this more 
unqualified authenticity of autocratic rule, there is also 
to be found in this case a correspondingly unqualified 
devotion in the subjects and an unqualified subservience 
to dynastic ends on the part of the officers of the crown. 
The coalescence of dynastic rule with the divine order is 
less complete in the German case, but all observers bear 
witness that it all goes far enough also in the German 
case. This state of things is recalled here as a means 
of making plain that the statesmen of these Imperial 

*"To us the state is the most indispensable as well as the high- 
est requisite to our earthly existence All individualistic 

endeavor must be unreservedly subordinated to this lofty 

claim The state eventually is of infinitely more 

value than the sum of all the individuals within its jurisdiction." 
"This conception of the state, which is as much a part of our 
life as is the blood in our veins, is nowhere to be found in the 
English Constitution, and is quite foreign to English thought, 
and to that of America as well." Eduard Meyer, England, its 
Political Organisation and Development and the War against 
Germany, translated by H. S. White. Boston 1916. pp. 30-31. 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 87 

Powers must in the nature of the case, and without blame, 
be drawn out from under the customary restraint of those 
principles of vulgar morality that are embodied in the 
decalogue. It is not that the subject, or what comes to 
the same thing the servant of such a dynastic State 
may not be upright, veracious and humane in private life, 
but only that he must not be addicted to that sort of thing 
in such manner or degree as might hinder his usefulness 
for dynastic purposes. These matters of selfishly in- 
dividual integrity and humanity have no weight as against 
the exigencies of the dynastic enterprise. 

These considerations may not satisfy all doubters as 
to the moral sufficiency of these motives that so suffice 
to decide the dynastic statesmen on their enterprise of 
aggression by force and fraud ; but it should be evident 
that so long as these statesmen continue in the frame of 
mind spoken of, and so long as popular sentiment in 
these countries continues, as hitherto, to lend them ef- 
fectual support in the pursuit of such Imperial enterprise, 
so long it must also remain true that no enduring peace 
can be maintained within the sweep of their Imperial am- 
bition. Any peace compact would necessarily be, in 
effect, an armistice terminable at will and serving as a 
season of preparation to meet a deferred opportunity. 
For the peaceable nations it would, in effect, be a respite 
and a season of preparation for eventual submission to the 
Imperial rule. 

By advocates of such a negotiated compact of perpetual 
peace it has been argued that the populace underlying 
these Imperial Powers will readily be brought to realise 
the futility and inexpediency of such dynastic enterprise, 
if only the relevant facts are brought to their knowledge, 
and that so these Powers will be constrained to keep the 

88 On the Nature of Peace ' 

peace by default of popular support for their warlike 
projects. What is required, it is believed by these san- 
guine persons, is that information be competently con- 
veyed to the common people of these warlike nations, 
showing them that they have nothing to apprehend in the 
way of aggression or oppressive measures from the side 
of their more peaceable neighbors ; whereupon their war- 
like animus will give place to a reasonable and enlight- 
ened frame of mind. This argument runs tacitly or ex- 
plicitly, on the premise that these peoples who have so 
enthusiastically lent themselves to the current warlike 
enterprise are fundamentally of the same racial complex- 
ion and endowed with the same human nature as their 
peaceable neighbors, who would be only too glad to keep 
the peace on any terms of tolerable security from ag- 
gression. If only a fair opportunity is offered for the 
interested peoples to come to an understanding, it is held, 
a good understanding will readily be reached; at least 
so far as to result in a reasonable willingness to submit 
questions in dispute to an intelligent canvass and an equit- 
able arbitration. 

Projects for a negotiated peace compact, to include the 
dynastic States, can hold any prospect of a happy issue 
only if this line of argument, or its equivalent, is pertinent 
and conclusive ; and the argument is to the point only in 
so far as its premises are sound and will carry as far as 
the desired conclusion. Therefore a more detailed at- 
tention to the premises on which it runs will be in place, 
before any project of the kind is allowed to pass inspect- 

As to homogeneity of race and endowment among the 
several nations in question, the ethnologists, who are com- 
petent to speak of that matter, are ready to assert that this 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 89 

homogeneity goes much farther among the nations of 
Europe than any considerable number of peace advocates 
would be ready to claim. In point of race, and broadly 
speaking, there is substantially no difference between 
these warring nations, along any east-and-west line ; while 
the progressive difference in racial complexion that is 
always met with along any north-and-south line, nowhere 
coincides with a national or linguistic frontier. In no 
case does a political division between these nations mark 
or depend on a difference of race or of hereditary endow- 
ment. And, to give full measure, it may be added that also 
in no case does a division of classes within any one of 
these nations, into noble and base, patrician and plebeian, 
lay and learned, innocent and vicious, mark or rest on 
any slightest traceable degree of difference in race or in 
heritable endowment. On the point of racial homogeneity < 
there is no fault to find with the position taken. 

If the second postulate in this groundwork of premises 
on which the advocates of negotiable peace base their 
hopes were as well taken there need be no serious mis- 
giving as to the practicability of such a plan. The plan 
counts on information, persuasion and reflection to subdue 
national animosities and jealousies, at least in such meas- 
ure as would make them amenable to reason. The question 
of immediate interest on this head, therefore, would be 
as to how far this populace may be accessible to the con- 
templated line of persuasion. At present they are, noto- 
riously, in a state of obsequious loyalty to the dynasty, 
single-minded devotion to the fortunes of the Fatherland, 
and uncompromising hatred of its enemies. In this 
frame of mind there is nothing that is new, except the 
degree of excitement. The animus, it will be recalled, was 
all there and on the alert when the call came, so that the 

90 On the Nature of Peace 

excitement came on with the sweep of a conflagration on 
the first touch of a suitable stimulus. The German people 
at large was evidently in a highly unstable equilibrium, so 
that an unexampled enthusiasm of patriotic self-sacrifice 
followed immediately on the first incitement to man- 
slaughter, very much as if the nation had been held under 
an hypnotic spell. One need only recall the volume of 
overhearing magniloquence that broke out all over the 
place in that beginning, when The Day was believed to be 

Such a popular frame of mind is not a transient epi- 
sode, to be created at short notice and put aside for a 
parcel of salutary advice. The nation that will make such 
a massive concerted move with the alacrity shown in this 
instance must be living in a state of alert readiness for 
just such an onset. Yet this is not to be set down as 
anything in the way of a racial trait specifically dis- 
tinguishing the German people from those other adjacent 
nationalities that are incapable of a similarly swift and 
massive response to the appeal of patriotism. These 
adjacent nationalities are racially indentical with the Ger- 
man people, but they do not show the same warlike aban- 
don in nearly the same degree. 

But for all that, it is a national trait, not to be acquired 
or put away by taking thought. It is just here that the line 
of definition runs : it is a national trait, not a racial one. 
It is not Nature, but it is Second Nature. But a national 
trait, while it is not heritable in the simple sense of that 
term, has the same semblance, or the same degree, of 
hereditary persistence that belongs to the national in- 
stitutions, usages, conventionalities, beliefs, which dis- 
tinguish the given nation from its neighbors. In this in- 
stance it may be said more specifically that this eager 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 91 

loyalty is a heritage of the German people at large in 
the same sense and with the same degree of permanence 
as the institution of an autocratic royalty has among them, 
or a privileged nobility. Indeed, it is the institutional 
- counterfoil of these establishments. It is of an institution- 
al character, just as the corresponding sense of national 
solidarity and patriotic devotion is among the neighbor- 
ing peoples with whom the German nation comes in com- 
parison. And an institution is an historical growth, with 
just so much of a character of permanence and con- 
tinuity of transmission as is given it by the circumstances 
out of which it has grown. Any institution is a product 
of habit, or perhaps more accurately it is a body of habits 
of thought bearing on a given line of conduct, which 
prevails with such generality and uniformity throughout 
the group as to have become a matter of common sense. 
Such an article of institutional furniture is an outcome 
of usage, not of reflection or deliberate choice ; and it has 
consequently a character of self-legitimation, so that it 
stands in the accredited scheme of things as intrinsically 
right and good, and not merely as a shrewdly chosen ex- 
pedient ad interim. It affords a norm of life, inosculating 
with a multiplicity of other norms, with which it goes to 
make up a balanced scheme of ends, ways and means gov- 
erning human conduct ; and no one such institutional item, 
therefore, is materially to be disturbed, discarded or a- 
bated except at the cost of serious derangement to the 
balanced scheme of things in which it belongs as an in- 
tegral constituent. Nor can such a detail norm of con- 
duct and habitual propensity come into bearing and hold 
its place, except by force of habituation which is at the 
same time consonant with the common run of habituation 
to which the given community is subject. It follows 

92 On the Nature of Peace 

that the more rigorous, comprehensive, unremitting and 
long-continued the habituation to which a given institu- 
tional principle owes its vogue, the more intimately and 
definitively will it be embedded in the common sense of 
the community, the less chance is there of its intrinsic 
necessity being effectually questioned or doubted, and the 
less chance is there of correcting it or abating its force 
in case circumstances should so change as to make its 
continued rule visibly inexpedient. Its abatement will be 
a work not of deliberation and design, but of defection 
through disuse. 

Not that reflection and sane counsel will count for 
nothing in these premises, but only that these exertions of 
intelligence will count for relatively very little by com- 
parison with the run of habituation as enforced by the cir- 
cumstances conditioning any given case; and further, 
that wise counsel and good resolutions can take effect in 
the way of amending any untoward institutional bent only 
by way of suitable habituation, and only at such a rate 
of change as the circumstances governing habituation will 
allow. It is, at the best, slow work to shift the settled 
lines of any community's scheme of common sense. Now, 
national solidarity, and more particularly an unquestioning 
loyalty to the sovereign and the dynasty, is a matter of 
course and of commonsense necessity with the German 
people. It is not necessary to call to mind that the Japan- 
ese nation, which has here been coupled with the German, 
are in the same case, only more so. 

Doubtless it would be exceeding the premises to claim 
that it should necessarily take the German people as long- 
continued and as harsh a schooling to unlearn their excess 
of chauvinism, their servile stooping to gratuitous author- 
ity, and their eager subservience to the dynastic ambitions 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 93 

of their masters, as that which has in the course of history 
induced there habits in them. But it would seem reason- 
able to expect that there should have to be some measure 
of proportion between what it has cost them in time and 
experience to achieve their current frame of mind in 
this bearing and what it would cost to divest themselves 
of it. It is a question of how long a time and how ex- 
acting a discipline would be required so far to displace the 
current scheme of commonsense values and convictions in 
force in the Fatherland as to neutralise their current 
high-wrought principles of servility, loyalty and national 
animosity ; and on the solution of this difficulty appear to 
depend the chances of success for any proposed peace 
compact to which the German nation shall be made a 
party, on terms of what is called an "honorable peace/' 

The national, or rather the dynastic and warlike, animus 
of this people is of the essence of their social and political 
institutions. Without such a groundwork . of popular 
sentiment neither the national establishment, nor the 
social order on which it rests and through which it works, 
could endure. And with this underlying national senti- 
ment intact nothing but a dynastic establishment of a 
somewhat ruthless order, and no enduring system of law 
and order not based on universal submission to personal 
rule, could be installed. Both the popular animus and the 
correlative coercive scheme of law and order are of 
historical growth. Both have been learned, acquired, and 
are in no cogent sense original with the German people. 
But both alike and conjointly have come out of a very 
protracted, exacting and consistent discipline of mas- 
tery and subjection, running virtually unbroken over the 
centuries that have passed since the region that is now the 
Fatherland first passed under the predaceous rule of its 

94 On the Nature of Peace 

Teutonic invaders, for no part of the "Fatherland" is 
held on other tenure than that of forcible seizure in 
ancient times by bands of invaders, with the negligible 
exception of Holstein and a slight extent of territory ad- 
joining that province to the south and south-west. Since 
the time when such peoples as were overtaken in this re- 
gion by the Germanic barbarian invasions, and were re- 
duced to sujection and presently merged with their alien 
masters, the same general fashion of law and order that 
presently grew out of that barbarian conquest has contin- 
ued to govern the life of those peoples, with relatively 
slight and intermittent relaxation of its rigors. Contrasted 
with its beginnings, in the shameful atrocities of the Dark 
Ages and the prehistoric phases of this German occupa- 
tion, the later stages of this system of coercive law and 
order in the Fatherland will appear humane, not to say 
genial; but as compared with the degree of mitigation 
which the like order of things presently underwent else- 
where in western Europe, it has throughout the historical 
period preserved a remarkable degree of that character of 
arrogance and servility which it owes to its barbarian and 
predatory beginnings. 

The initial stages of this Germanic occupation of the 
Fatherland are sufficiently obscure under the cloud of 
unrecorded antiquity that covers them; and then, an 
abundance of obscurantism has also been added by the 
vapors of misguided vanity that have surrounded so 
nearly all historical inquiry on the part of patriotic Ger- 
man scholars. Yet there are certain outstanding features 
in the case, in history and prehistory, that are too large 
or too notorious to be set aside or to be covered over, and 
these may suffice to show the run of circumstances which 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 95 

have surrounded the German peoples and shaped their 
civil and political institutions, and whose discipline has 
guided German habits of thought and preserved the Ger- 
man spirit of loyalty in the shape in which it underlies 
the dynastic State of the present day. 

Among the most engaging of those fables that make 
the conventional background of German history is the 
academic legend of a free agricultural village community 
made up of ungraded and masterless men. It is not nec- 
essary here to claim that such a village community never 
played a part in the remoter prehistoric experiences out 
of which the German people or their ruling classes came 
into the territory of the Fatherland ; such a claim might 
divert the argument. But it is sufficiently patent to stu- 
dents of those matters today that no such community of 
free and ungraded men had any part in the Germanic 
beginnings; that is to say, in the early experiences of 
the Fatherland under German rule. The meager and 
ambiguous remarks of Tacitus on the state of domestic 
and civil economy among the inhabitants of Germany 
need no longer detain anyone, in the presence of the 
available archaeological and historical evidence. The cir- 
cumstantial evidence of the prehistoric antiquities which 
touch this matter, as well as the slight allusions of his- 
torical records in antiquity, indicate unambiguously 
enough that when the Germanic immigrants moved into 
the territories of the Fatherland they moved in as in- 
vaders, or rather as marauders, and made themselves mas- 
ters of the people already living on the land. And his- 
tory quite as unambiguously declares that when the 
Fatherland first comes under its light it presents a dark 
and bloody ground of tumultuous contention and intrigue; 
where princes and princelings, captains of war and of 

96 On the Nature of Peace 

rapine as well as the captains of superstition, spend the 
substance of an ignominiously sordid and servile populace 
in an endless round of mutual raiding, treachery, assas- 
sinations and supersession. 

Taken at their face value, the recorded stories of that 
early time would leave one to infer that the common peo- 
ple, whose industry supported this superstructure of sor- 
did mastery, could have survived only by oversight. But 
touched as it is with poetic license and devoted to the 
admirable life of the master class admirable in their 
own eyes and in those of their chroniclers, as undoubt- 
edly also in the eyes of the subject populace the history 
of that time doubtless plays up the notable exploits and 
fortunes of its conspicuous personages, somewhat to the 
neglect of the obscure vicissitudes of life and fortune 
among that human raw material by use of which the 
admirable feats of the master class were achieved, and 
about the use of which the dreary traffic of greed and 
crime went on among the masters. 

Of the later history, what covers, say, the last one 
thousand years, there is no need to speak at length. With 
transient, episodic, interruptions it is for the Fatherland 
a continuation out of these beginnings, leading out into 
a more settled system of subjection and mastery and a 
progressively increased scale of princely enterprise, rest- 
ing on an increasingly useful and increasingly loyal pop- 
ulace. In all this later history the posture of things in 
the Fatherland is by no means unique, nor is it even strik- 
ingly peculiar, by contrast with the rest of western Eu- 
rope, except in degree. It is of the same general kind 
as the rest of what has gone to make the historical ad- 
vance of medieval and modern times ; but it differs from 
the generality in a more sluggish movement and a more 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 97 

tenacious adherance to what would be rated as the un- 
toward features of mediaevalism. The approach to a 
modern scheme of institutions and modern conceptions of 
life and of human values has been slow, and hitherto 
incomplete, as compared with those communities that 
have, for good or ill, gone farthest along the ways of 
modernity. Habituation to personal subjection and sub- 
servience under the rigorous and protracted discipline of 
standardised service and fealty has continued later, and 
with later and slighter mitigation, in the Fatherland ; so 
as better to have conserved the spiritual attitude of the 
feudal order. Law and order in the Fatherland has in a 
higher degree continued to mean unquestioning obedience 
to a personal master and unquestioning subservience to 
the personal ambitions of the master. And since freedom, 
in the sense of discretionary initiative on the part of the 
common man, does not fit into the framework of such a 
system of dependence on personal authority and surveil- 
lance, any degree of such free initiative will be "licence" 
in the eyes of men bred into the framework of this system ; 
whereas "liberty," as distinct from "licence," is not a mat- 
ter of initiative and self-direction, but of latitude in the 
service of a master. Hence no degree of curtailment in 
this delegated "liberty" will be resented or repudiated by 
popular indignation, so long as the master to whom serv- 
ice is due can give assurance that it is expedient for his 

The age-long course of experience and institutional dis- 
cipline out of which the current German situation has 
come may be drawn schemetically to the following effect : 
In the beginning a turmoil of conquest, rapine, servitude, 
and contention between rival bands of marauders and 
their captains, gradually, indeed imperceptibly, fell into 

98 On the Nature of Peace 

lines of settled and conventionalised exploitation; with 
repeated interruptions due to new incursions and new 
combinations of rapacious chieftains. Out of it all in the 
course of time came a feudal regime, under which per- 
sonal allegiance and service to petty chiefs was the sole 
and universal accredited bond of solidarity. As the out- 
come of further unremitting intrigue and contention 
among feudal chiefs, of high and low degree, the popu- 
lace fell into larger parcels, under the hands of feudal 
lords of larger dominion, and the bias of allegiance and 
service came to hold with some degree of permanence and 
uniformity, or at least of consistency, over a considerable 
reach of country, including its inhabitants. With the 
rise of States came allegiance to a dynasty, as distin- 
guished from the narrower and more ephemeral allegiance 
to the semi-detached person of a victorious prince; and 
the relative permanence of territorial frontiers under this 
rule gave room for an effectual recrudescence of the an- 
cient propensity to a sentimental group solidarity; in 
which the accredited territorial limits of the dynastic do- 
minion served to outline the group that so was felt to 
belong together under a joint dispensation and with some- 
thing of a joint interest in matters of fame and fortune. 
As the same notion is more commonly and more sugges- 
tively expressed, a sense of nationality arose within the 
sweep 6f the dynastic rule. This sense of community 
interest that is called nationality so came in to reenforce 
the sense of allegiance to the dynastic establishment and 
so has coalesced with it to produce that high-wrought loy- 
alty to the State, that draws equally on the sentiment of 
community interest in the nation and on the prescriptive 
docility to the dynastic head. The sense of national soli- 
darity and of feudal loyalty and service have coalesced, 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 99 

to bring this people to that climax of patriotic devotion 
beyond which there lies no greater height along this way. 
But this is also as far as the German people have gone ; 
and it is scarcely to be claimed that the Japanese have 
yet reached this stage; they would rather appear to be, 
essentially, subjects of the emperor, and only inchoately 
a Japanese nation. Of the German people it seems safe 
to say that they have achieved such a coalescence of un- 
impaired feudal fealty to a personal master and a full- 
blown sense of national solidarity, without any perceptible 
slackening in either strand of the double tie which so 
binds them in the service of the dynastic State. 

Germany, in other words, is somewhat in arrears, as 
compared with those Europeans that have gone farthest 
along this course of institutional growth, or perhaps rather 
institutional permutation. It is not that this retardation 
of the German people in this matter of national spirit is 
to be counted as an infirmity, assuredly not as a handicap 
in the pursuit of that national prestige on which all pa- 
triotic endeavor finally converges. For this purpose the 
failure to distinguish between the ambitions of the dy- 
nastic statesmen and the interests of the commonwealth 
is really a prodigious advantage, which their rivals, of 
more mature growth politically, have lost by atrophy of 
this same dynastic axiom of subservience. These others, 
of whom the French and the English-speaking peoples 
make up the greater part and may be taken as the typical 
instance, have had a different history, in part. The disci- 
pline of experience has left a somewhat different residue 
of habits of thought embedded in their institutional equip- 
ment and effective as axiomatic premises in their further 
apprehension of what is worth while, and why. 

100 On the Nature of Peace 

It is not that the difference between these two con- 
trasted strains of the Western civilisation is either pro- 
found or very pronounced; it is perhaps rather to be 
stated as a difference of degree than of kind ; a retarda- 
tion of spiritual growth, in respect of the prevalent and 
controlling habits of thought on certain heads, in the one 
case as against the other. Therefore any attempt to 
speak with sufficient definition, so as to bring out this na- 
tional difference of animus in any convincing way, will 
unavoidably have an appearance of over-statement, if not 
also of bias. And in any case, of course, it is not to be 
expected that the national difference here spoken for can 
be brought home to the apprehension of any unspoiled 
son of the Fatherland, since it does not lie within that 

It is not of the nature of a divergence, but rather a 
differential in point of cultural maturity, due to a differ- 
ential in the rate of progression through that sequence 
of institutional phases through which the civilised peoples 
of Europe, jointly and severally, have been led by force 
of circumstance. In this movement out of the Dark Ages 
and onward, circumstances have fallen out differently for 
those Europeans that chanced to live within the confines 
of the Fatherland, different with such effect as to have 
in the present placed these others at a farther remove 
from the point of departure, leaving them furnished with 
less of that archaic frame of mind that is here in question. 
Possessed of less, but by no means shorn of all perhaps 
not of the major part of that barbaric heritage. 

Circumstances have so fallen out that these typically 
the French and the English-speaking peoples have left 
behind and partly forgotten that institutional phase in 
which the people of Imperial Germany now live and move 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 101 

and have their being. The French partly because they 
that is the common people of the French lands entered 
the procession with a very substantial lead, having never 
been put back to a point abreast of their neighbors across 
the Rhine, in that phase of European civilisation from 
which the peoples of the Fatherland tardily emerged into 
the feudal age. So, any student who shall set out to 
account for the visible lead which the French people still 
so obstinately maintain in the advance of European cul- 
ture, will have to make up his account with this notable 
fact among the premises of his inquiry, that they have 
had a shorter course to cover and have therefore, in the 
sporting phrase, had the inside track. They measure 
from a higher datum line. Among the advantages which 
so have come, in a sense unearned, to the French people, 
is their uninterrupted retention, out of Roman and per- 
haps pre-Roman times, of the conception of a common- 
wealth, a community of men with joint and mutual inter- 
ests apart from any superimposed dependence on a joint 
feudal superior. The French people therefore became a 
nation, with unobtrusive facility, so soon as circumstances 
permitted, and they are today the oldest "nation" in Eu- 
rope. They therefore were prepared from long before- 
hand, with an adequate principle (habit of thought) of 
national cohesion and patriotic sentiment, to make the 
shift from a dynastic State to a national commonwealth 
whenever the occasion for such a move should arise; 
that is to say, whenever the dynastic State, by a suitable 
conjunction of infirmity and irksomeness, should pass the 
margin of tolerance in this people's outraged sense of na- 
tional shame. The case of the German people in their 
latterday attitude toward dynastic vagaries may afford a 
term of comparison. These appear yet incapable of dis- 

102 On the Nature of Peace 

tinguishing between national shame and dynastic ambi- 

By a different course and on lines more nearly parallel 
with the life-history of the German peoples, the English- 
speaking peoples have reached what is for the present 
purpose much the same ground as the French, in that 
they too have made the shift from the dynastic State to 
the national commonwealth. The British started late, 
but the discipline of servitude and unmitigated personal 
rule in their case was relatively brief and relatively in- 
effectual; that is to say, as compared with what their 
German cousins had to endure and to learn in the like 
connection. So that the British never learned the lesson 
of dynastic loyalty fully by heart ; at least not the popu- 
lace; whatever may be true for the privileged classes, 
the gentlemen, whose interests were on the side of privi- 
lege and irresponsible mastery. Here as in the French 
case it was the habits of thought of the common man, 
not of the class of gentlemen, that made the obsolescence 
of the dynastic State a foregone conclusion and an easy 
matter as one speaks of easy achievement in respect of 
matters of that magnitude. It is now some two and a 
half centuries since this shift in the national point of view 
overtook the English-speaking community. Perhaps it 
would be unfair to say that that period, or that period plus 
what further time may yet have to be added, marks the 
interval by which German habits of thought in these prem- 
ises are in arrears, but it is not easy to find secure ground 
for a different and more moderate appraisal. 

The future, of course, is not to be measured in terms 
of the past, and the tempo of the present and of the cal- 
culable future is in many bearings very different from 
that which has ruled even in the recent historical past. 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 103 

But then, on the other hand, habituation always requires 
time; more particularly such habituation as is to take 
effect throughout a populous nation and is counted on to 
work a displacement of a comprehensive institutional sys- 
tem and of a people's outlook on life. 

Germany is still a dynastic State, That is to say, its 
national establishment is, in effect, a self-appointed and 
irresponsible autocracy which holds the nation in usufruct, 
working through an appropriate bureaucratic organisa- 
tion, and the people is imbued with that spirit of abne- 
gation and devotion that is involved in their enthusias- 
tically supporting a government of that character. Now, 
it is in the nature of a dynastic State to seek dominion, 
that being the whole of its nature. And a dynastic estab- 
lishment which enjoys the unqualified usufruct of such 
resources as are placed at its disposal by the feudalistic 
loyalty of the German people runs no chance of keeping 
the peace, except on terms of the unconditional surrender 
of all those whom it may concern. No solemn engage- 
ment and no pious resolution has any weight in the bal- 
ance against a cultural fatality of this magnitude. 

This account of the derivation and current state of 
German nationalism will of course appear biased to any- 
one who has been in the habit of rating German Culture 
high in all its bearings, and to whom at the same time 
the ideals of peace and liberty appeal. Indeed, such a 
critic, gifted with the due modicum of asperity, might 
well be provoked to call it all a more or less ingenious 
diatribe of partisan malice. But it can be so construed 
only by those who see the question at issue as a point of 
invidious distinction between this German animus on the 
one hand and the corresponding frame of mind of the 

104 On the Nature of Peace 

neighboring peoples on the other hand. There may also 
appear to the captious to be some air of deprecation about 
the characterisation here offered of the past history of 
political traffic within the confines of the Fatherland. 
All of which, of course, touches neither the veracity of 
the characterisation nor the purpose with which so un- 
grateful a line of analysis and exposition has been en- 
tered upon. It is to be regretted if facts that may flutter 
the emotions of one and another among the sensitive and 
unreflecting can not be drawn into such an inquiry with- 
out having their cogency discounted beforehand on ac- 
count of the sentimental value imputed to them. Of 
course no offense is intended and no invidious compari- 
son is aimed at. 

Even if the point of it all were an invidious comparison 
it would immediately have to be admitted that the net 
showing in favor of these others, e. g., the French or the 
English-speaking peoples, is by no means so unreservedly 
to their credit as such a summary statement of the Ger- 
man case might seem to imply. As bearing on the chances 
of a peace contingent upon the temper of the contracting 
nationalities, it is by no means a foregone conclusion that 
such a peace compact would hold indefinitely even if it 
depended solely on the pacific animus of these others that 
have left the dynastic State behind. These others, in fact, 
are also not yet put of the woods. They may not have 
the same gift of gratuitous and irresponsible truculence 
as their German cousins, in the same alarming degree; 
but as was said in an earlier passage, they too are ready 
to fight on provocation. They are patriotic to a degree ; 
indeed to such a degree that anything which visibly 
touches the national prestige will readily afford a casus 
belli. But it remains true that the popular temper among 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 105 

them is of the defensive order ; perhaps of an unnecessa- 
rily enthusiastic defensive order, but after all in such a 
frame of mind as leaves them willing to let well enough 
alone, to live and let live. 

And herein appears to lie the decisive difference be- 
tween those peoples whose patriotic affections center 
about the fortunes of an impersonal commonwealth and 
those in whom is superadded a fervent aspiration for 
dynastic ascendency. The latter may be counted on to 
break the peace when a promising opportunity offers. 

The contrast may be illustrated, though not so sharply 
as might be desirable, in the different temper shown by 
the British people in the Boer war on the one hand, as 
compared with the popularity of the French-Prussian war 
among the German people on the other hand. Both were 
aggressive wars, and both were substantially unprovoked. 
Diplomatically speaking, of course, sufficient provocation 
was found in either case, as how should it not? But in 
point of substantial provocation and of material induce- 
ment, both were about equally gratuitous. In either case 
the war could readily have been avoided without material 
detriment to the community and without perceptible lesion 
to the national honor. Both were "engineered" on 
grounds shamelessly manufactured ad hoc by interested 
parties ; in the one case by a coterie of dynastic statesmen, 
in the other by a junta of commercial adventurers and 
imperialistic politicians. In neither case had the people 
any interest of gain or loss in the quarrel, except as it 
became a question of national prestige. But both the Ger- 
man and the British community bore the burden and 
fought the campaign to a successful issue for those inter- 
ested parties who had precipitated the quarrel. The Brit- 
ish people at large, it is true, bore the burden; which 

106 On the Nature of Peace 

comes near being all that can be said in the way of pop- 
ular approval of this war, which political statemen have 
since then rated as one of the most profitable enterprises 
in which the forces of the realm have been engaged. On 
the subject of this successful war the common man is still 
inclined to cover his uneasy sense of decency with a 
recital of extenuating circumstances. What parallels all 
this in the German case is an outbreak of patriotic aban- 
don and an admirable spirit of unselfish sacrifice in fur- 
therance of the dynastic prestige, an intoxication of patri- 
otic blare culminating in the triumphant coronation at 
Versailles. Nor has the sober afterthought of the past 
forty-six years cast a perceptible shadow of doubt across 
the glorious memory of that patriotic debauch. 

Such is the difference of animus between a body of 
patriotic citizens in a modern commonwealth on the one 
hand and the loyal subjects of a dynastic State on the 
other hand. There need be no reflections on the intrinsic 
merits of either. Seen in dispassionate perspective from 
outside the turmoil, there is not much to choose, in point 
of sane and self-respecting manhood, between the slug- 
gish and shamefaced abettor of a sordid national crime, 
and a ranting patriot who glories in serving as cat's-paw 
to a syndicate of unscrupulous politicians bent on domin- 
ion for dominion's sake. But the question here is not as 
to the relative merits or the relative manhood contents 
of the two contrasted types of patriot. Doubtless both 
and either have manhood enough and to spare ; at least, 
so they say. But the point in question is the simpler and 
nowise invidious one, as to the availability of both or 
either for the perpetuation of the world's peace under a 
compact of vigilant neutrality. Plainly the German frame 
of mind admits of no neutrality ; the quest of dominion 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 107 

is not compatible with neutrality, and the substantial core 
of German national life is still the quest of dominion 
under dynastic tutelage. How it stands with the spirit 
that has repeatedly come in sight in the international rela- 
tions of the British community is a question harder to 

It may be practicable to establish a peace of neutrals 
on the basis of such national spirit as prevails among 
these others the French and English-speaking peoples, 
together with the minor nationalities that cluster about 
the North Sea because their habitual attitude is that of 
neutrality, on the whole and with allowance for a belli- 
cose minority in all these countries. By and large, these 
peoples have come to the tolerant attitude that finds ex- 
pression in the maxim, Live and let live. But they are all 
and several sufficiently patriotic. It may, indeed, prove 
that they are more than sufficiently patriotic for the pur- 
poses of a neutral peace. They stand for peace, but it 
is "peace with honor;" which means, in more explicit 
terms, peace with undiminished national prestige. Now, 
national prestige is a very particular commodity, as has 
been set out in earlier passages of this inquiry; and a 
peace which is to be kept only on terms of a jealous 
maintenance of the national honor is likely to be in a 
somewhat precarious case. If, and when, the national 
honor is felt to require an enhanced national ascendancy, 
the case for a neutral peace immediately becomes critical. 
Ajnd the greater the number and diversity of pretensions 
and interests that are conceived to be bound up with the 
national honor, the more unstable will the resulting situa- 
tion necessarily be. 

The upshot of all this recital of considerations appears 
to be that a neutral peace compact may, or it may not, 

108 On the Nature of Peace 

be practicable in the absence of such dynastic States as 
Germahy and Japan; whereas it has no chance in the 
presence of these enterprising national establishments. 

No one will be readier or more voluble in exclaiming 
against the falsity of such a discrimination as is here at- 
tempted, between the democratic and the dynastic nations 
of the modern world, than the spokesmen of these dy- 
nastic Powers. No one is more outspoken in profes- 
sions of universal peace and catholic amity than these 
same spokesmen of the dynastic Powers; and nowhere 
is there more urgent need of such professions. Official 
and "inspired" professions are, of course, to be over- 
looked; at least, so charity would dictate. But there 
have, in the historic present, been many professions of 
this character made also by credible spokesmen of the 
German, and perhaps of the Japanese, people, and in all 
sincerity. By way of parenthesis it should be said that 
this is not intended to apply to expressions of conviction 
and intention that have come out of Germany these two 
years past (December 1916). Without questioning the 
credibility of these witnesses that have borne witness to 
the pacific and genial quality of national sentiment in the 
German people, it will yet be in place to recall the run of 
facts in the national life of Germany in this historical 
present and the position of these spokesmen in the Ger- 
man community. 

The German nation is of a peculiar composition in re- 
spect of its social structure. So far as bears on the ques- 
tion in hand, it is made up of three distinctive constituent 
factors, or perhaps rather categories or conditions of men. 
The populace is of course the main category, and in the 
last resort always the main and decisive factor. Next in 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 109 

point of consequence as well as of numbers and initiative 
is the personnel of the control, the ruling class, the ad- 
ministration, the official community, the hierarchy of civil 
and political servants, or whatever designation may best 
suit; the category comprises that pyramidal superstruc- 
ture of privilege and control whereof the sovereign is the 
apex, and in whom, under any dynastic rule, is in effect 
vested the usufruct of the populace. These two classes 
or conditions of men, the one of which orders and the 
other obeys, make up the working structure of the nation, 
and they also between them embody the national life and 
carry forward the national work and aim. Intermediate 
between them, or rather beside and overlapping the com- 
missure, is a third category whose life articulates loosely 
with both the others at the same time that it still runs 
along in a semi-detached way. This slighter but more 
visible, and particularly more audible, category is made 
up of the "Intellectuals," as a late, and perhaps vulgar, 
designation would name them. 

These are they who chiefly communicate with the world 
outside, and at the same time they do what is academi- 
cally called thinking. They are in intellectual contact and 
communication with the world at large, in a contact of 
give and take, and they think and talk in and about those 
concepts that go in under the caption of the humanities 
in the world at large. The category is large enough to 
constitute an intellectual community, indeed a community 
of somewhat formidable magnitude, taken in absolute 
terms, although in percentages of the population at large 
their numbers will foot up to only an inconsiderable figure. 
Their contact with the superior class spoken of above is 
fairly close, being a contact, in the main, of service on 
the one side and of control on the other. With the popu- 

110 On the Nature of Peace 

lace their contact and communion is relatively slight, the 
give and take in the case being neither intimate nor far- 
reaching. More particularly is there a well-kept limit of 
moderation on any work of indoctrination or intellectual 
guidance which this class may carry down among the 
people at large, dictated and enforced by dynastic expe- 
diency. This category, of the Intellectuals, is sufficiently 
large to live its own life within itself, without drawing 
on the spiritual life of the community at large, and of 
sufficiently substantial quality to carry its own peculiar 
scheme of intellectual conventions and verities. Of the 
great and highly meritorious place and work of these In- 
tellectuals in the scheme of German culture it is needless 
to speak. What is to the point is that they are the ac- 
credited spokesmen of the German nation in all its com- 
monplace communication with the rest of civilised Eu- 

The Intellectuals have spoken with conviction and sin- 
cerity of the spiritual state of the German people, but in 
so doing, and in so far as bears on the character of Ger- 
man nationalism, they have been in closer contact, intel- 
lectually and sympathetically, with the intellectual and 
spiritual life of civilised Europe at large than with the 
movements of the spirit among the German populace. 
And their canvassing of the concepts which so have come 
under their attention from over the national frontiers has 
been carried forward so far, again, as bears on the ques- 
tions that are here in point with the German-dynastic 
principles, logic and mechanism of execution under their 
immediate observation and supplying the concrete mate- 
rials for inquiry. Indeed, it holds true, by and large, that 
nothing else than this German-dynastic complement of 
ways and means has, or can effectually, come under their 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 111 

observation in such a degree of intimacy as to give body 
and definition to the somewhat abstract theorems on cul- 
tural aims and national preconceptions that have come 
to them from outside. In short, they have borrowed these 
theoretical formulations from abroad, without the con- 
crete apparatus of ways and means in which these theo- 
rems are embodied in their foreign habitat, and have so 
found themselves construing these theoretical borrowings 
in the only concrete terms of which they have had first- 
hand and convincing knowledge. Such an outcome would 
be fairly unavoidable, inasmuch as these Intellectuals, 
however much they are, in the spirit, citizens of the cos- 
mopolitan republic of knowledge and intelligence, they 
are after all, in propria persona, immediately and unre- 
mittingly subjects of the German-dynastic State; so that 
all their detail thinking on the aims, ways and means of 
life, in all its civil and political bearings, is unavoidably 
shaped by the unremitting discipline of their workday 
experience under this dynastic scheme. The outcome has 
been that while they have taken up, as they have under- 
stood them, the concepts that rule the civic life of these 
other, maturer nations, they have apprehended and de- 
veloped these' theorems of civic life in the terms and by 
the: logic enforced in that system of control and surveil- 
lance known to them by workday experience, the only 
empirical terms at hand. 

The apex of growth and the center of diffusion as re- 
gards the modern culture in respect of the ideals and 
logic of civic life other phases of this culture than this 
its civil aspect do not concern the point here in question 
this apex of growth and center of diffusion lie outside 
the Fatherland, in an environment alien to the German 
institutional scheme. Yet so intrinsic to the cultural drift 

112 On the Nature of Peace 

of modern mankind are these aims and this logic, that in 
taking over and further enriching the intellectual heritage 
of this modern world the Intellectuals of the Fatherland 
have unavoidably also taken over those conceptions of 
civil initiative and masterless self-direction that rule the 
logic of life in a commonwealth of ungraded men. They 
have taken these over and assimilated them as best their 
experience would permit. But workday experience and 
its exigencies are stubborn things ; and in this process of 
assimilation of these alien conceptions of right and honest 
living, it is the borrowed theorems concerning civic rights 
and duties that have undergone adaptation and revision, 
not the concrete system of ways and means in which these 
principles, so accepted, are to be put in practice. Neces- 
sarily so, since in the German scheme of law and order 
the major premise is the dynastic State, whereas the 
major premise of the modern civilised scheme of civic life 
is the absence of such an organ. So, the development and 
elaboration of these modern principles of civic liberty 
and this elaboration has taken on formidable dimensions 
under the hand of the German Intellectuals has uni- 
formly run out into Pickwickian convolutions, greatly 
suggestive of a lost soul seeking a place to rest. With 
unquestionably serious purpose and untiring endeavour, 
they have sought to embody these modern civilised pre- 
conceptions in terms afforded by, or in terms compatible 
with, the institutions of the Fatherland; and they have 
been much concerned and magniloquently elated about 
the German spirit of freedom that so was to be brought to 
final and consummate realisation in the life of a free 
people. But at no point and in no case have either the 
proposals or their carrying out taken shape as a concrete 
application of the familiar principle of popular self-direc- 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 113 

tion. It has always come to something in the way of a 
concessive or expedient mitigation of the antagonistic 
principle of personal authority. Where the forms of self- 
government or of individual self -direction have conces- 
sively been installed, under the Imperial rule, they have 
turned out to be an imitative structure with some shrewd 
provision for their coercion or inhibition at the discretion 
of an irresponsible authority. 

Neither the sound intelligence nor the good faith of 
these Intellectuals of the Fatherland is to be impugned. 
That the necessarily vague and circumlocutory exposi- 
tions of civic institutions and popular liberty which they 
have so often and so largely promulgated should have 
been used as a serviceable blind of dynastic statecraft is 
not to be set down to their discredit. Circumstances over 
which they could have no control, since they were circum- 
stances that shaped their own habits of thought, have 
placed it beyond their competence to apprehend or to for- 
mulate these alien principles, (habits of thought) con- 
cretely in those alien institutional details and by the alien 
logic with which they could have no working acquaintance. 

To one and another this conception of cultural soli- 
darity within the nation, and consequent cultural aliency 
between nations, due to the different habits of life and of 
thought enforced by the two diverse institutional systems, 
may be so far unfamiliar as to carry no conviction. It 
may accordingly not seem out of place to recall that the 
institutional system of any given community, particularly 
for any community living under a home-bred and time- 
tried system of its own, will necessarily be a balanced 
system of interdependent and mutually concordant parts 
working together in one comprehensive plan of law and 
order. Through such an institutional system, as, e. g., 

114 On the Nature of Peace 

the German Imperial organisation, there will run a degree 
of logical consistency, consonant with itself throughout, 
and exerting a consistent discipline throughout the com- 
munity; whereby there is enforced a consistent drift or 
bent in the prevalent habits of life, and a correlative bent 
in the resulting habits of thought prevalent in the com- 
munity. It is, in fact, this possession of a common scheme 
of use and wont, and a consequent common outlook and 
manner of thinking, that constitutes the most intrinsic 
bond of solidarity in any nationality, and that finally marks 
it off from any other. 

It is equally a matter of course that any other given 
community, living under the rule of a substantially dif- 
ferent, or divergent, system of institutions, will be ex- 
posed to a course of workday discipline running to a dif- 
ferent, perhaps divergent, effect ; and that this other com- 
munity will accordingly come in for a characteristically 
different discipline and fall under the rule of a different 
commonsense outlook. Where an institutional difference 
of this kind is somewhat large and consistent, so as to 
amount in effect to a discrepancy, as may fairly be said 
of the difference between Imperial Germany and its like 
on the one hand, and the English-speaking nations on the 
other hand, there the difference in everyday conceptions 
may readily make the two peoples mutually unintelligible 
to one another, on those points of institutional principle 
that are involved in the discrepancy. This is the state 
of the case as between the German people, including the 
Intellectuals, and the peoples against whom their precon- 
ceptions of national destiny have arrayed them. And the 
many vivid expressions of consternation, abhorence and 
incredulity that have come out of this community of In- 
tellectuals in the course of the past two years of trial 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 115 

and error, bear sufficient testimony to the rigorous con- 
straint which these German preconceptions and their logic 
exercise over the Intellectuals, no less than over the 

Conversely, of course, it is nearly as impracticable for 
those who have grown up under the discipline of demo- 
cratic institutions to comprehend the habitual outlook of 
the commonplace German patriot on national interests 
and aims; not quite, perhaps, because the discipline of 
use and wont and indoctrination is neither so rigorous nor 
so consistent in their case. But there is, after all, preva- 
lent among them a sufficiently evident logical inability to 
understand and appreciate the paramount need of na- 
tional, that is to say dynastic, ascendancy that actuates all 
German patriots; just as these same patriots are simi- 
larly unable to consider national interests in any other 
light than that of dynastic ascendancy. 

Going simply on the face value of the available evi- 
dence, any outsider might easily fall into the error of be- 
lieving that when the great adventure of the war opened 
up before them, as well as when presently the shock of 
baffled endeavour brought home its exasperating futility, 
the Intellectuals of the Fatherland distinguished them- 
selves above all other classes and conditions of men in the 
exuberance of their patriotic abandon. Such a view would 
doubtless be almost wholly erroneous. It is not that the 
Intellectuals reached a substantially superior pitch of 
exaltation, but only that, being trained in the use of lan- 
guage, they were able to express their emotions with great 
facility. There seems no reason to believe that the popu- 
lace fell short of the same measure in respect of their 
prevalent frame of mind. 

116 On the Nature of Peace 

To return to the workings of the Imperial dynastic 
State and the forces engaged. It plainly appears that the 
Intellectuals are to be counted as supernumeraries, except 
so far as they serve as an instrument of publicity and in- 
doctrination in the hands of the discretionary authorities. 
The working factors in the case are the dynastic organi- 
sation of control, direction and emolument, and the pop- 
ulace at- large by use of whose substance the traffic in 
dynastic ascendancy and emolument is carried on. These 
two are in fairly good accord, on the ancient basis of 
feudal loyalty. Hitherto there is no evident ground for 
believing that this archaic tie that binds the populace to 
the dynastic ambitions has at all perceptibly weakened. 
And the possibility of dynastic Germany living at peace 
with the world under any compact, therefore translates 
itself into the possibility of the German people's unlearn- 
ing its habitual deference and loyalty to the dynasty. 

As its acquirement has been a work of protracted 
habituation, so can its obsolescence also come about only 
through more or less protracted habituation under a sys- 
tem of use and wont of a different or divergent order. 
The elements of such a systematic discipline running to 
an effect at cross purposes with this patriotic animus are 
not absent from the current situation in the Fatherland ; 
the discipline of the modern industrial system, for in- 
stance, runs to such a divergent effect; but this, and 
other conceivable forces which may reenforce it, will 
after all take time, if they are to work a decisive change 
in the current frame of mind of the patriotic German 
community. During the interval required for such a 
change in the national temper, the peace of the world 
would be conditioned on the inability of the dynastic 
State to break it. So that the chances of success for any 

On the Conditions of a Lasting Peace 117 

neutral peace league will vary inversely as the available 
force of Imperial Germany, and it could be accounted 
secure only in the virtual elimination of the Imperial 
State as a national Power. 

If the gradual obsolescence of the spirit of militant 
loyalty in the German people, through disuse under a 
regime of peace, industry, self-government and free trade, 
is to be the agency by force of which dynastic imperialism 
is to cease, the chance of a neutral peace will depend 
on the thoroughness with which such a regime of self- 
direction can be installed in this case, and on the space 
of time required for such obsolescence through disuse. 
Obviously, the installation of a workable regime of self- 
government on peaceable lines would in any case be a 
matter of great difficulty among a people whose past ex- 
perience has so singularly incapacitated them for self- 
government; and obviously, too, the interval of time 
required to reach secure ground along this line of ap- 
proach would be very considerable. Also, in view of 
these conditions, obviously, this scheme for maintaining 
the peace of nations by a compact of neutrals based on 
a compromise with an aspiring dynastic State resolves 
itself into the second of the two alternatives spoken of at 
the outset, viz., a neutral peace based on the elimination 
of Germany as a war power, together with the elim- 
ination of any materials suitable for the formation of a 
formidable coalition. And then, with Imperial Germany 
supposedly eliminated or pacified, there would still remain 
the Japanese establishment, to which all the arguments 
pertinent in the case of Germany will apply without 
abatement; except that, at least hitherto, the dynastic 
statesmen of Japan have not had the disposal of so mas- 
sive a body of resources, in population, industry, or raw 



The argument therefore turns back to a choice between 
the two alternatives alluded to: peace in submission to 
the rule of the German dynastic establishment (and to 
Japan), or peace through elimination of these enterpris- 
ing Powers. The former alternative, no doubt, is suf- 
ficiently unattractive, but it is not therefore to be put 
aside without a hearing. As goes without saying, it is 
repugnant to the patriotic sentiments of those peoples 
whom the Imperial German establishment have elected for 
submission. But if this unreflecting patriotic revulsion 
can once be made amenable to reason, there is always 
something to be said in favor of such a plan of peaceable 
submission, or at least in extenuation of it; and if it is 
kept in mind that the ulterior necessity of such submission 
must always remain in perspective as a condition prece- 
dent to a peaceful settlement, so long as one or both of 
these enterprising Powers remains intact, it will be seen 
that a sane appraisal of the merits of such a regime of 
peace is by no means uncalled for. For neither of these 
two Powers is there a conclusive issue of endeavour short 
of paramount dominion. 

There should also be some gain of insight and sobriety 
in recalling that the Intellectuals of the Fatherland, who 
have doubtless pondered this matter longer and more 


Peace Without Honour 119 

dispassionately than all other men, have spoken very 
highly of the merits of such a plan of universal submis- 
sion to the rule of this German dynastic establishment. 
They had, no doubt, been considering the question both 
long and earnestly, as to what would, in the light of rea- 
son, eventually be to the best interest of those peoples 
whose manifest destiny was eventual tutelage under the 
Imperial crown; and there need also be no doubt that 
in that time (two years past) they therefore spoke ad- 
visedly and out of the fulness of the heart on this head. 
The pronouncements that came out of the community 
of Intellectuals in that season of unembarrassed elation 
and artless avowal are doubtless to be taken as an out- 
come of much thoughtful canvassing of what had best 
be done, not as an enforced compromise with untoward 
necessities but as the salutary course freely to be pur- 
sued with an eye single to the best good of all concerned. 
It is true, the captious have been led to speak slight- 
ingly of the many utterances of this tenor coming out of 
the community of Intellectuals, as, e. g., the lay sermons 
of Professor Ostwald dating back to that season; but 
no unprejudiced reader can well escape the persuasion 
that these, as well as the very considerable volume of 
similar pronouncements by many other men of eminent 
scholarship and notable for benevolent sentiments, are 
faithfully to be accepted as the expressions of a pro- 
found conviction and a consciously generous spirit. In 
so speaking of the advantages to be derived by any sub- 
ject people from submission to the German Imperial rule, 
these Intellectuals are not to be construed as formulating 
the drift of vulgar patriotic sentiment among their com- 
patriots at large, but rather as giving out the deliverances 
of their own more sensitive spirit and maturer delibera- 

120 On the Nature of Peace 

tion, as men who are in a position to see human affairs 
and interests in a larger perspective. Such, no doubt, 
would be their own sense of the matter. 

Reflection on the analogous case of the tutelage exer- 
cised by the American government over the subject Phil- 
ippines may contribute to a just and temperate view of 
what is intended in the regime of tutelage and submission 
so spoken for by the German Intellectuals, and, it may 
be added, found good by the Imperial statesmen. There 
would, of course, be the difference, as against the case 
of the Philippinos, that whereas the American government 
is after all answerable, in the last resort and in a some- 
what random fashion, to a popular opinion that runs on 
democratic preconceptions, the German Imperial estab- 
lishment on the other hand is answerable to no one, ex- 
cept it be to God, who is conceived to stand in somewhat 
the relation of a silent partner, or a minority stock- 
holder in this dynastic enterprise. 

Yet it should not be overlooked that any presumptive 
hard usage which the vassal peoples might look for at 
the hands of the German dynasty would necessarily be 
tempered with considerations of expediency as dictated 
by the exigencies of usufruct. The Imperial establish- 
ment has shown itself to be wise, indeed more wise than 
amiable, but wise at least in its intentions, in the use 
which it has made of subject peoples hitherto. It is true, 
a somewhat accentuated eagerness on the part of the 
Imperial establishment to get the maximum service in a 
minimum of time and at a minimum cost from these sub- 
ject populations, as, e. g., in Silesia and Poland, in 
Schleswig-Holstein, in Alsace-Lorraine, or in its African 
and Oceanic possessions, has at times led to practices 
altogether dubious on humanitarian grounds, at the same 

Peace Without Honour 121 

time that in point of thrifty management they have gone 
beyond "what the traffic will bear/' Yet it is not to be 
overlooked and in this connection it is a point of some 
weight that, so far as the predatory traditions of its 
statecraft will permit, the Imperial establishment has in 
all these matters been guided by a singularly unreserved 
attention to its own material advantage. Where its man- 
agement in these premises has yielded a less profitable usu- 
fruct than the circumstances would reasonably admit, the 
failure has been due to an excess of cupidity rather than 
the reverse. 

The circumstantial evidence converges to the effect 
that the Imperial establishment may confidently be count- 
ed on to manage the affairs of its subject peoples with an 
eye single to its own material gain, and it may with equal 
confidence be counted on that in the long run no unad- 
vised excesses will be practised. Of course, an excessive 
adventure in atrocity and predation, due to such human 
infirmity in its agents or in its directorate as has been 
shown in various recent episodes, is to be looked for now 
and again ; but these phenomena would come in by way 
of fluctuating variations from the authentic routine, rather 
than as systematic features of it. 

That superfluity of naughtiness that has given char- 
acter to the current German Imperial policy in Belgium, 
e. g., or that similarly has characterised the dealings of 
Imperial Japan in Korea during the late "benevolent as- 
similation" of that people into Japanese-Imperial usu- 
fruct, is not fairly to be taken to indicate what such an 
Imperial establishment may be expected to do with a sub- 
ject people on a footing of settled and long-term exploi- 
tation. At the outset, in both instances, the policy of 
frightfulness was dictated by a well-advised view to 

122 On the Nature of Peace 

economy of effort in reducing the subject people to an 
abject state of intimidation, according ,to the art of war 
as set forth in the manuals; whereas latterly the some- 
what profligate excesses of the government of occupa- 
tion decently covered with diplomatic parables on benev- 
olence and legality have been dictated by military con- 
venience, particularly by the need of forced labor and 
the desirability of a reduced population in the acquired 
territory. So also the "personally conducted" dealings 
with the Armenians by use of the Turks should probably 
also best be explained as an endeavour to reduce the 
numbers of an undesirable population beforehand, with- 
out incurring unnecessary blame. All these things are, 
at the most, misleading indications of what the Imperial 
policy would be like under settled conditions and in the 
( absence of insubordination. 

' By way of contrast, such as may serve to bring the 
specific traits of this prospective Imperial tutelage of 
nations into a better light, the Ottoman usufruct of the 
peoples of the Turkish dominions offers an instructive 
instance. The Ottoman tutelage is today spoken of by 
its apologists in terms substantially identical with the 
sketches of the future presented by hopeful German pa- 
triots in the early months of the current war. But as is 
so frequently the case in such circumstances, these ex- 
pressions of the officers have to be understood in a diplo- 
matic sense; not as touching the facts in any other 
than a formal way. It is sufficiently evident that the 
Ottoman management of its usufruct has throughout 
been ill-advised enough persisently to charge more than 
the traffic would bear, probably due in great part to lack 
of control over its agents or ramifications, by the central 
office. The Ottoman establishment has not observed, or 

Peace Without Honour 123 

enforced, the plain rules of economy in its utilisation of 
the subject peoples, and finds itself today bankrupt in 
consequence. What may afford more of a parallel to the 
prospective German tutelage of the nations is the proce- 
dure of the Japanese establishment in Korea, Manchuria, 
or China; which is also duly covered with an ostensibly 
decent screen of diplomatic parables, but the nature and 
purpose of which is overt enough in all respects but the 
the nomenclature. It is not unlikely that even this 
Japanese usufruct and tutelage runs on somewhat less 
humane and complaisant lines than a well-advised econ- 
omy of resources would dictate for the prospective Ger- 
man usufruct of the Western nations. 

There is the essential difference between the two 
cases that while Japan is over-populated, so that it 
becomes the part of a wise government to find additional 
lands for occupancy, and that so it is constrained by its 
imperial ambitions to displace much of the population in 
its subject territories, the Fatherland on the other hand 
is under-populated notoriously, though not according 
to the letter of the diplomatic parables on this head and 
for the calculable future must continue to be under-popu- 
lated; provided that the state of the industrial arts con- 
tinues subject to change in the same general direction as 
hitherto, and provided that no radical change affects the 
German birth-rate. So, since the Imperial government 
has no need of new lands for occupancy by its home 
population, it will presumably be under no inducement to 
take measures looking to the partial depopulation of its 
subject territories. 

The case of Belgium and the measures looking to a 
reduction of its population may raise a doubt, but prob- 
ably not a well taken doubt. It is rather that since it has 

124 On the Nature of Peace 

become evident that the territory can not be held, it is 
thought desirable to enrich the Fatherland with whatever 
property can be removed, and to consume the accumulated 
man-power of the Belgian people in the service of the 
war. It would appear that it is a war-measure, de- 
signed to make use of the enemy's resources for his 
defeat. Indeed, under conditions of settled occupation or 
subjection, any degree of such depopulation would en- 
tail an economic loss, and any well-considered adminis- 
trative policy would therefore look to the maintenance of 
the inhabitants of the acquired territories in undiminished 
numbers and^ unimpaired serviceability. 

The resulting scheme of Imperial usufruct should ac- 
cordingly be of a considerate, not to say in effect humane, 
character, always provided that the requisite degree 
of submission and subservience ("law and order") can be 
enforced by a system of coercion so humane as not to re- 
duce the number of the inhabitants or materially to lower 
their physical powers. Such would, by reasonable ex- 
pectation, be the character of this projected Imperial 
tutelage and usufruct of the nations of Christendom. 
In its working-out this German project should accord- 
ingly differ very appreciably from the policy which its 
imperial ambitions have constrained the Japanese estab- 
lishment to pursue in its dealings with the life and for- 
tunes of its recently, and currently, acquired subject 

The better to appreciate in some concrete fashion what 
should, by reasonable expectation, be the terms on which 
life might so be carried on sub pace germanica, attention 
may be invited to certain typical instances of such peace 
by abnegation among contemporary peoples. Perhaps at 
the top of the list stands India, with its many and varied 

Peace Without Honour 125 

native peoples, subject to British tutelage, but, the British 
apologists say, not subject to British usufruct. The 
margin of tolerance in this instance is fairly wide, but 
its limits are sharply drawn. India is wanted and held, 
not for tribute or revenue to be paid into the Imperial 
treasury, nor even for exclusive trade privileges or pref- 
erences, but mainly as a preserve to provide official occu- 
pation and emoluments for British gentlemen not other- 
wise occupied or provided for ; and secondarily as a means 
of safeguarding lucrative British investments, that is 
to say, investments by British capitalists of high and low 
degree. The current British professions on the subject 
of this occupation of India, and at times the shamefaced 
apology for it, is that the people of India suffer no hard- 
ship by this means ; the resulting governmental establish- 
ment being no more onerous and no more expensive to 
them than any equally, or even any less, competent gov- 
ernment of their own would necessarily be. The fact, 
however, remains, that India affords a much needed and 
very considerable net revenue to the class of British 
gentlemen, in the shape of official salaries and pensions, 
which the British gentry at large can on no account 
forego. Narrowed to these proportions it is readily con- 
ceivable that the British usufruct of India should rest 
with no extraordinary weight on the Indian people at 
large, howeyer burdensome it may at times become to 
those classes who aspire to take over the usufruct in case 
the British establishment can be dislodged. This case 
evidently differs very appreciably from the projected 
German usufruct of neighboring countries in Europe. 

A case that may be more nearly in point would be that 
of any one of the countries subject to the Turkish rule in 
recent times ; although these instances scarcely show just 

126 On the Nature of Peace 

what to expect under the projected German regime. 
The Turkish rule has been notably inefficient, considered 
as a working system of dynastic usufruct; whereas it is 
confidently expected that the corresponding German sys- 
tem would show quite an exceptional degree of efficiency 
for the purpose. This Turkish inefficiency has had a 
two-fold effect, which should not appear in the German 
case. Through administrative abuses intended to serve the 
personal advantage of the irresponsible officials, the under- 
lying peoples have suffered a progressive exhaustion 
and dilapidation ; whereby the central authority, the dynas- 
tic establishment, has al'so grown progressively, cumu- 
latively weaker and therefore less able to control its 
agents ; and, in the second place, on the same grounds, in 
the pursuit of personal gain, and prompted by personal 
animosities, these irresponsible agents have persistently 
carried their measures of extortion beyond reasonable 
bounds, that is to say beyond the bounds which a well 
considered plan of permanent usufruct would counte- 
nance. All this would be otherwise and more sensibly ar- 
ranged under German Imperial auspices. 

One of the nations that have fallen under Turkish rule 
and Turkish peace affords a valuable illustration of 
a secondary point that is to be considered in connection 
with any plan of peace by submission. The Armenian 
people have in later time come partly under Russia do- 
minion, and so have been exposed to the Russian system 
of bureaucratic exploitation ; and the difference between 
Russian and Turkish Armenia is instructive. According 
to all credible that is unofficial accounts, conditions are 
perceptibly more tolerable in Russian Armenia. Well 
informed persons relate that the cause for this more 
lenient, or less extreme, administration of affairs under 

Peace Without Honour 127 

Russian officials is a selective death rate among them, 
such that a local official who persistently exceeds a cer- 
tain ill-defined limit of tolerance is removed by what 
would under other circumstances be called an untimely 
death. KTo adequate remedy has been found, within the 
large limits which Russian bureaucratic administration 
habitually allows itself in questions of coercion. The 
Turk, on the other hand, less deterred by considerations 
of long-term expediency, and, it may be, less easily in- 
fluenced by outside opinion on any point of humanity, 
has found a remedy in the systematic extirpation of any 
village in which an illicit death occurs. One will incline 
to presume that on this head the German Imperial pro- 
cedure would be more after the Russian than after the 
Turkish pattern; although latterday circumstantial evi- 
dence will throw some sinister doubt on the reasonable- 
ness of such an expectation. \ ; 

It is plain, however, that the Turkish remedy for this 
form of insubordination is a wasteful means of keeping 
the peace. Plainly, to the home office, the High Com- 
mand, the extinction of a village with its population is a 
more substantial loss than the unseasonable decease of 
one of its administrative agents; particularly when it is 
called to mind that such a decease will presumably follow 
only on such profligate excesses of naughtiness as are 
bound to be inexcusably unprofitable to the central author- 
ity. It may be left an open question how far a corrective 
of this nature can hopefully be looked to as applicable, 
in case of need, under the projected German Imperial 

It may, I apprehend, be said without offense that there 
is no depth of depravity below the ordinary reach of the 
Russian bureaucracy; but this organisation finds itself 

128 On the Nature of Peace 

constrained, after all, to use circumspection and set some 
limits on individual excursions beyond the bounds of de- 
cency and humanity, so soon as these excesses touch the 
common or joint interest of the organisation. Any excess 
of atrocity, beyond a certain margin of tolerance, on the 
part of any one of its members is likely to work pecuniary 
mischief to the rest ; and then, the bureaucratic conduct of 
affairs is also, after all, in an uncertain degree subject to 
some surveillance by popular sentiment at home or abroad. 
The like appears not to hold true of the Turkish official 
organisation. The difference may be due to a less prov- 
ident spirit among the latter, as already indicated. But 
a different tradition, perhaps an outgrowth of this lack of 
providence and of the consequent growth of a policy of 
"frightfulness," may also .come in for a share in the out- 
come ; and there is also a characteristic difference in point 
of religious convictions, which may go some way in the 
same direction. The followers of Islam appear on the 
whole to take the tenets of their faith at their face value 
servile, intolerant and fanatic whereas the Russian 
official class may perhaps without undue reproach be con- 
sidered to have on the whole outlived the superstitious 
conceits to which they yield an expedient pro forma ob- 
servance. So that when worse conies to worst, and the 
Turk finds himself at length with his back against the 
last consolations of the faith that makes all things straight, 
he has the assured knowledge that he is in the right as 
against the unbelievers ; whereas the Russian bureaucrat 
in a like case only knows that he is in the wrong. The 
last extremity is a less conclusive argument to the man 
in whose apprehension it is not the last extremity. Again, 
there is some shadow of doubt, falls on the question as 
to which of these is more nearly in the German Imperial 

Peace Without Honour 129 

On the whole, the case of China is more to the point. 
By and large, the people of China, more particularly the 
people of the coastal-plains region, have for long habit- 
ually lived under a regime of peace by non-resistance. 
The peace has been broken transiently from time to 
time, and local disturbances have not been infrequent; 
but, taken by and large, the situation has habitually been 
of the peaceful order, on a ground of non-resisting sub- 
mission. But this submission has not commonly been of 
a whole-hearted kind, and it has also commonly been as- 
sociated with a degree of persistent sabotage ; which has 
clogged and retarded the administration of governmental 
law and order, and has also been conducive to a large 
measure of irresponsible official corruption. The habitual 
scheme of things Chinese in this bearing may fairly be 
described as a peace of non-resistance tempered with 
sabotage and assassination. Such was the late Manchu 
regime, and there is no reason in China for expecting a 
substantially different outcome from the Japanese in- 
vasion that is now under way. The nature of this Japan- 
ese incursion should be sufficiently plain. It is an enter- 
prise in statecraft after the order of Macchiavelli, Met- 
ternich, and Bismarck. Of course, the conciliatory fables 
given out by the diplomatic service, and by the other 
apologists, are to be taken at the normal discount of 
one-hundred percent. The relatively large current out- 
put of such fables may afford a hint as to the magnitude 
of the designs which the fables are intended to cover. 

The Chinese people have had a more extended experi- 
ence in peace of this order than all others, and their case 
should accordingly be instructive beyond all others. Not 
that a European peace by non-resistance need be ex- 
pected to run very closely on the Chinese lines, but there 

130 On the Nature of Peace 

should be a reasonable expectation that the large course 
of things would be somewhat on the same order in both 
cases. Neither the European traditions and habitual tem- 
perament nor the modern state of the industrial arts will 
permit one to look for anything like a close parallel in 
detail; but it remains true, when all is said, that the 
Chinese experience of peace under submission to alien 
masters affords the most instructive illustration of such 
a regime, as touches its practicability, its methods, its 
cultural value, and its effect on the fortunes of the sub- 
ject peoples and of their masters. 

Now, it may be said by way of preliminary generalisa- 
tion that the life-history of the Chinese people and their 
culture is altogether the most imposing achievement 
which the records of mankind have to show ; whereas the 
history of their successive alien establishments of mastery 
and usufruct is an unbroken sequence of incredibily 
shameful episodes, always beginning in unbounded 
power and vainglory, running by way of misrule, waste 
and debauchery, to an inglorious finish in abject corrup- 
tion and imbecility. Always have the gains in civilisation, 
industry and in the arts, been made by the subject Chi- 
nese, and always have their alien masters contributed 
nothing to the outcome but misrule, waste, corruption and 
decay. And yet in the long run, with all this handicap and 
misrule, the Chinese people have held their place and made 
headway in those things to which men look with af- 
fection and esteem when they come to take stock of what 
things are worth while. It would be a hopeless task to 
count up how many dynasties of masterful barbarians, 
here and there, have meanwhile come up and played their 
ephemeral role of vainglorious nuisance and gone under 

Peace Without Honour 131 

in shame and confusion, and dismissed with the invariable 
verdict of "Good Riddance 1" 

It may at first sight seem a singular conjuncture of cir- 
cumstances, but it is doubtless a consequence of the same 
conjunture, that the Chinese people have also kept their 
hold through all history on the Chinese lands. They 
have lived and multiplied and continued to occupy the land, 
while their successive alien masters have come and gone. 
So that today, as the outcome of conquest, and of what 
would be rated as defeat, the people continue to be 
Chinese, with an unbroken pedigree as well as an unbroken 
line of home-bred culture running through all the ages of 
history. In the biological respect the Chinese plan of non- 
resistance has proved eminently successful. 

And, by the way, much the same, though not in the same 
degree, is true for the Armenian people ; who have con- 
tinued to hold their hill country through good days and 
evil, apparently without serious or enduring reduction of 
their numbers and without visible lapse into barbarism, 
while the successive disconnected dynasties of their con- 
quering rulers have come and gone, leaving nothing but 
an ill name. "This fable teaches" that a diligent atten- 
tion to the growing of crops and children is the sure and 
appointed way to the maintenance of a people and its cul- 
ture even under the most adverse conditions, and that 
eventual death and shameful destruction inexorably wait 
on any "ruling race." Hitherto the rule has not failed. 
The rule, indeed, is grounded in the heritable traits of 
human nature, from which there is no escape. 

For its long-term biological success, as well as for the 
continued integrity of a people's culture, a peace of non- 
resistance, under good or evil auspices, is more to be de- 
- sired than imperial dominion. But these things are not 

132 On the Nature of Peace 

all that modern peoples live for, perhaps it is safe to say 
that in no case are these chief among the things for 
which civilised Europeans are willing to live. They 
urgently need also freedom to live their own life in their 
own way, or rather to live within the bonds of convention 
which they have come in for by use and wont, or at 
least they believe that such freedom is essential to any 
life that shall be quite worth while. So also they have 
a felt need of security from arbitrary interference in their 
pursuit of a livelihood and in the free control of their own 
pecuniary concerns. And they want a discretionary 
voice in the management of their joint interests, whether 
as a nation or in a minor civil group. In short, they want 
personal, pecuniary and political liberty, free from all 
direction or inhibition from without. They are also 
much concerned to maintain favorable economic condi- 
tions for themselves and their children. And last, but 
chiefly rather than least, they commonly are hide-bound 
patriots inspired with an intractable felt need of national 

It is an assemblage of peoples in such a frame of mind 
to whom the pacifists are proposing in effect, a plan for 
eventual submission to an alien dynasty, under the form 
of a neutral peace compact to include the warlike Powers. 
There is little likelihood of such a scheme being found 
acceptable, with popular sentiment running as it now does 
in the countries concerned. And yet, if the brittle temper 
in which any such proposal is rejected by popular opinion 
in these countries today could be made to yield sufficient- 
ly to reflection and deliberate appraisal, it is by no means 
a foregone conclusion that its acceptance would not be the 
best way out of a critical situation. The cost of disabling 
and eliminating the warlike Power whose dominion is 

Peace Without Honour 133 

feared, or even of staving off the day of surrender, is 
evidently serious enough. The merits of the alternative 
should be open to argument, and should, indeed, be allow- 
ed due consideration. And any endeavor to present them 
without heat should presumably find a hearing. It ap- 
pears to have been much of the fault of the pacifists who 
speak for the Peace League that they have failed or re- 
fused to recognise these ulterior consequences of the plan 
which they advocate; so that they appear either not to 
know what they afe talking about, or to avoid talking 
about what they know. 

It will be evident from beforehand that the grave dif- 
ficulty to be met in any advocacy of peace on terms of 
non-resistant subjection to an alien dynastic rule "peace 
at any price" is a difficulty of the psychological order. 
Whatever may be conceived to hold true for the Chinese 
people, such submission is repugnant to the sentiments of 
the Western peoples. Which in turn evidently is due to 
the prevalence of certain habitual preconceptions among 
modern civilised men, certain acquired traits of temper 
and bias, of the nature of fixed ideas. That something in 
the way of a reasonably contented and useful life is pos- 
sible under such a regime as is held in prospect, and even 
some tolerable degree of well-being, is made evident in the 
Chinese case. But the Chinese tolerance of such a regime 
goes to argue that they are charged with fewer preconcep- 
tions at variance with the exigencies of life under these 
conditions. So, it is commonly accepted, and presumably 
to be accepted, that the Chinese people at large have little 
if any effectual sense of nationality; their patriotism ap- 
pears to be nearly a negligible quantity. This would 
appear to an outsider to have been their besetting weak- 
ness, to which their successful subjection by various and 

134 On the Nature of Peace 

sundry ambitious aliens has been due. But it appears also 
to have been the infirmity by grace of which this people 
have been obliged to learn the ways of submission, and 
so have had the fortune to outlive their alien masters, all 
and sundry, and to occupy the land and save the uncon- 
taminated integrity of their long-lived civilisation. 

Some account of the nature and uses of this spirit of 
patriotism that is held of so great account among Western 
nations has already been set out in an earlier passage, 
One or two points in the case, that bear on the argument 
here, may profitably be recalled. The patriotic spirit, or 
the tie of nationalism, is evidently of the nature of habit, 
whatever proclivity to the formation of such a habit 
may be native to mankind. More particularly is it a mat- 
ter of habit it might even be called a matter of for- 
tuitous habit what particular national establishment a 
given human subject will become attached to on reaching 
what is called "years of discretion" and so becoming a 
patriotic citizen. 

The analogy of the clam may not be convincing, but it 
may at least serve to suggest what may be the share play- 
ed by habituation in the matter of national attachment. 
The young clam, after having passed the free-swimming 
phase of his life, as well as the period of attachment 
to the person of a carp or similar fish, drops to the bot- 
tom and attaches himself loosely in the place and station 
in life to which he has been led ; and he loyally sticks to 
his particular patch of oose and sand through good for- 
tune and evil. It is, under Providence, something of a 
fortuitous matter where the given clam shall find a 
resting place for the sole of his feet, but it is also, 
after all, "his own. his native land" etc. It lies in the 

Peace Without Honour 135 

nature of a clam to attach himself after this fashion, 
loosely, to the bottom where he finds a living, and he 
would not be a "good clam and true" if he failed to do 
so; but the particular spot for which he forms this at- 
tachment is not of the essence of the case. At least, so 
they say. 

It may be, as good men appear to believe or know, that 
all men of sound, or at least those of average, mind will 
necessarily be of a patriotic temper and be attached by 
ties of loyalty to some particular national establishment, 
ordinarily the particular establishment which is formally 
identified with the land in which they live ; although it 
is always possible that a given individual may be an 
alien in the land, and so may owe allegiance to and be 
ruled by a patriotic attachment to another national estab- 
lishment, to which the conventionalities governing his 
special case have assigned him as his own proper nation. 
The analogy of the clam evidently does not cover the 
case. The patriotic citizen is attached to his own pro- 
per nationality not altogether by the accident of domicile, 
but rather by the conventions, legal or customary, which 
assign him to this or that national establishment according 
to certain principles of use and wont. 

Mere legal citizenship or allegiance does not decide the 
matter either ; at least not by any means unavoidably ; as 
appears in the case of the Chinese subject under Manchu 
or Japanese rule; and as appears perhaps more per- 
spicuously in the case of the "hyphenate" American citi- 
zen, whose formal allegiance is to the nation in whose 
land he prefers to live, all the while that his patriotic af- 
fection centers on his spiritual Fatherland in whose for- 
tunes he has none but a non-resident interest. Indeed, 
the particular national tie that will bind the affections 

136 On the Nature of Peace 

that is to say the effectual patriotic attachment of any 
given individual may turn out on closer scrutiny to be 
neither that of domicile or of formal legal allegiance, nor 
that of putative origin or pedigree, but only a reflex of 
certain national animosities ; which may also turn out on 
examination to rest on putative grounds as illustrated 
by a subsidiary class of hyphenate American citizens 
whose affections have come to be bound up in the national 
fortunes of one foreign Power for the simple, but suffici- 
ent, reason that, on conventional grounds, they bear malice 
against another equally foreign Power. 

Evidently there is much sophistication, not to say con- 
ventionalised affectation, in all this national attachment 
and allegiance. It will perhaps not do to say that it is al- 
together a matter of sophistication. Yet it may not exceed 
the premises to say that the particular choice, the concrete 
incidence, of this national attachment is in any given case 
a matter of sophistication, largely tempered with fortuity. 
One is born into a given nationality or, in case of dynas- 
tic allegiance, into service and devotion to a (fortuitously) 
given sovereign or at least so it is commonly believed. 
Still one can without blame, and without excessive shame, 
shift one's allegiance on occasion. What is not counte- 
nanced among civilised men is to shift out of allegiance to 
any given nationality or dynasty without shifting into 
the like complication of gainless obligations somewhere 
else. Such a shifting of national or dynastic base is not 
quite reputable, though it is also not precisely disrepu- 
table. The difficulty in the case appears to be a moral dif- 
ficulty, not a mental or a pecuniary one, and assuredly 
not a physical difficulty, since the relation in question is 
not a physical relation. It would appear to be of the 
moral order of things, in that sense of the term in which 

Peace Without Honour 137 

conventional proprieties are spoken of as moral. That 
is to say, it is a question of conforming to current expecta- 
tions under a code of conventional proprieties. Like much 
of the conventional code of behavior this patriotic attach- 
ment has the benefit of standardised decorum, and its out- 
ward manifestations are enjoined by law. All of which 
goes to show how very seriously the whole matter is re- 

And yet it is also a matter of common notoriety that 
large aggregates of men, not to speak of sporadic in- 
dividuals, will on occasion shift their allegiance with the 
most felicitous effect and with no sensible loss of self- 
respect or of their good name. Such a shift is to be seen 
in multiple in the German nation within the past half- 
century, when, for instance, the Hanoverians, the Saxons, 
and even the Holsteiners in very appreciable numbers, 
not to mention the subjects of minuscular principalities 
whose names have been forgotten in the shuffle, all be- 
came good and loyal subjects of the Empire and of the 
Imperial dynasty, good and loyal without reservation, as 
has abundantly appeared. So likewise within a similar 
period the inhabitants of the Southern States repudiated 
their allegiance to the Union, putting in its place an 
equivalent loyalty to their new-made country; and then, 
when the new national establishment slipped out from 
under their feet they returned as whole-heartedly as need 
be to their earlier allegiance. In each of these moves, taken 
with deliberation, it is not to be doubted that this body 
of citizens have been moved by an unimpeachable spirit of 
patriotic honor. No one who is in any degree conversant 
with the facts is likely to question the declaration that It 
would be a perversion, not to say an inversion, of fact to 
rate their patriotic devotion to the Union today lower 

138 * On the Nature of Peace 

than that of any other section of the country or any other 
class or condition of men. 

But there is more, and in a sense worse, to be found 
along the same general line of evidence touching this 
sublimated sentiment of group solidarity that is called 
nationalism. The nation, of course, is large; the larger 
the better, it is believed. It is so large, indeed, that con- 
sidered as a group or community of men living together 
it has no sensible degree of homogeneity in any of their 
material circumstances or interests ; nor is anything more 
that any inconsiderable fraction of the aggregate popula- 
tion, territory, industry, or daily life known to any one 
of these patriotic citizens except by remote and highly 
dubious hearsay. The one secure point on which there is 
a (constructive) uniformity is the matter of national al- 
legiance ; which grows stronger and more confident with 
every increase in aggregate mass and volume. It is also 
not doubtful, e. g., that if the people of the British 
Dominions in North America should choose to throw in 
their national lot with the Union, all sections and classes, 
except those whose pecuniary interest in a protective tariff 
might be conceived to suffer, would presently welcome 
them; nor is it doubtful that American nationality would 
cover the new and larger aggregate as readily as the old. 
Much the same will hold true with respect to the other 
countries colonised under British auspices. And there is 
no conclusive reason for drawing the limit of admissible 
national extension at that point. 

So much, however, is fairly within the possibilities of 
the calculable future; its realisation would turn in great 
measure on the discontinuance of certain outworn or dis- 
serviceable institutional arrangements ; as, e. g., the rem- 
nants of a decayed monarchy, and the legally protected 

Peace Without Honour 139 

vested interests of certain business enterprises and of cer- 
tain office-holding classes. What more and farther might 
practicably be undertaken in this way, in the absence of 
marplot office-holders, office-seekers, sovereigns, priests 
and monopolistic business concerns sheltered under na- 
tional animosities and restraints of trade, would be some- 
thing not easy to assign a limit to. All the minor neutrals, 
that cluster about the North Sea, could unquestionably 
be drawn into such a composite nationality, in the absence, 
or with due disregard, of those classes, families and in- 
dividuals whose pecuniary or invidious gain is dependent 
on or furthered by the existing division of these peoples. 

The projected defensive league of neutrals is, in effect, 
an inchoate coalescence of the kind. Its purpose is the 
safeguarding of the common peace and freedom, which is 
also the avowed purpose and justification of all those 
modern nations that have outlived the regime of dynas- 
tic ambition and so of enterprise in dominion for domin- 
ion's sake, and have passed into the neutral phase of na- 
tionality; or it should perhaps rather be said that such 
is the end of endeavor and the warrant of existence and 
power for these modern national establishments in so far 
as they have outlived and repudiated such ambitions of 
a dynastic or a quasi-dynastic order, and so have taken 
their place as intrinsically neutral commonwealths. 

It is only in the common defense (or in the defense of 
the like conditions of life for their fellowmen elsewhere) 
that the citizens of such a commonwealth can without 
shame entertain or put in evidence a spirit of patriotic 
solidarity; and it is only by specious and sophistical ap- 
peal to the national honor a conceit surviving out of 
the dynastic past that the populace of such a common- 
wealth can be stirred to anything beyond a defense of 

140 On the Nature of Peace 

their own proper liberties or the liberties of like-minded 
men elsewhere, in so far as they are not still imbued with 
something of the dynastic animus and the chauvinistic 
animosities which they have formally repudiated in re- 
pudiating the feudalistic principles of the dynastic State. 

The "nation/' without the bond of dynastic loyalty, is 
after all a make-shift idea, an episodic half-way station 
in the sequence, and loyalty, in any proper sense, to the 
nation as such is so much of a make-believe, that in the 
absence of a common defense to be safeguarded any such 
patriotic conceit must loose popular assurance and, with 
the passing of generations, fall insensibly into abeyance 
as an archaic affectation. The pressure of danger from 
without is necessary to keep the national spirit alert and 
stubborn, in case the pressure from within, that comes 
of dynastic usufruct working for dominion, has been with- 
drawn. With further extension of the national bounda- 
ries, such that the danger of gratuitous infraction from 
without grows constantly less menacing, while the tradi- 
tional regime of international animosities falls more and 
more remotely into the background, the spirit of nation- 
alism is fairly on the way to obsolescence through dis- 
use. In other words, the nation, as a commonwealth, 
being a partisan organisation for a defensive purpose, be- 
comes functa officio in respect of its nationalism and its 
patriotic ties in somewhat the same measure as the na- 
tional coalition grows to such a size that partisanship is 
displaced by a cosmopolitan security. 

Doubtless the falling into abeyance through disuse of 
so pleasing a virtue as patriotic devotion will seem an 
impossibly distasteful consummation; and about tastes 
there is no disputing, but tastes are mainly creations of 
habit. Except for the disquieting name of the thing, there 

Peace Without Honour 141 

is today little stands in the way of a cosmopolitan order 
of human intercourse unobtrusively displacing national 
allegiance; except for vested interests in national offices 
and international discriminations, and except for those 
peoples among whom national life still is sufficiently 
bound up with dynastic ambition. 

In an earlier passage the patriotic spirit has been de- 
fined as a sense of partisan solidarity in point of pres- 
tige, and sufficient argument has been spent in confirming 
the definition and showing its implications. With the 
passing of all occasion for a partisan spirit as touches the 
common good, through coalescence of the parts between 
which partisan discrepancies have hitherto been kept up, 
there would also have passed all legitimate occasion for 
or provocation to an intoxication of invidious prestige 
on national lines, and there is no prestige that is not of 
an invidious nature, that being, indeed, the whole of its 
nature. He would have to be a person of praeternatural 
patriotic sensibilities who could fall into an emotional 
state by reason of the national prestige of such a coali- 
tion commonwealth as would be made up, e. g., of the 
French and English-speaking peoples, together with those 
other neutrally and peaceably inclined European com- 
munities that are of a sufficiently mature order to have 
abjured dynastic ambitions of dominion, and perhaps 
including the Chinese people as well. Such a coalition 
may now fairly be said to be within speaking distance, 
and with its consummation, even in the inchoate shape of 
a defensive league of neutrals, the eventual abeyance of 
that national allegiance and national honor that bulks so 
large in the repertory of current eloquence would also 
come in prospect* 

142 On the Nature of Peace 

All this is by no means saying that love of country, and 
of use and wont as it runs in one's home area and among 
one's own people, would suffer decay, or even abatement. 
The provocation to nostalgia would presumably be as good 
as ever. It is even conceivable that under such a (contem- 
plated) regime of unconditional security, attachment to 
one's own habitat and social circumstances might grow to 
something more than is commonly seen in the precarious 
situation in which the chances of a quiet life are placed 
today. But nostalgia is not a bellicose distemper, nor 
does it make for gratuitous disturbance of peaceable alien 
peoples ; neither is it the spirit in which men lend them- 
selves to warlike enterprise looking to profitless dominion 
abroad. Men make patriotic sacrifices of life and sub- 
stance in spite of home-sickness rather than by virtue of it. 

The aim of this long digression has been to show that 
patriotism, of that bellicose kind that seeks satisfaction in 
inflicting damage and discomfort on the people of other 
nations, is not of the essence of human life ; that it is of 
the nature of habit, induced by circumstances in the past 
and handed on by tradition and institutional arrangements 
into the present ; and that men can, without mutilation, 
divest themselves of it, or perhaps rather be divested of 
it by force of circumstances which will set the current 
of habituation the contrary way. 

The change of habituation necessary to bring about such 
a decay of the bellicose national spirit would appear to 
be of a negative order, at least in the main. It would 
be an habituation to unconditional peace and security ; in 
other words, to the absence of provocation, rather than 
a coercive training away from the bellicose temper. This 
bellicose temper, as it affects men collectively, appears to 

Peace Without Honour 143 

be an acquired trait ; and it should logically disappear in 
time in the absence of those conditions by impact of which 
it has been acquired. Such obsolescence of patriotism, 
however, would not therefore come about abruptly or 
swiftly, since the patriotic spirit has by past use and 
wont, and by past indoctrination, been so thoroughly 
worked into the texture of the institutional fabric and into 
the commonsense taste and morality, that its effectual 
obsolescence will involve a somewhat comprehensive dis- 
placement and mutation throughout the range ,of insti- 
tutions and popular conceits that have been handed down. 
And institutional changes take time, being creations of 
habit. Yet, again, there is the qualification to this last, 
that since the change in question appears to be a matter, 
not of acquiring a habit and confirming it in the shape 
of an article of general use and wont, but of forgetting 
what once was learned, the time and experience to be 
allowed for its decay need logically not equal that required 
for its acquirement, either in point of duration or in point 
of the strictness of discipline necessary to inculcate it. 

While the spirit of nationalism is such an acquired 
trait, and while it should therefore follow that the chief 
agency in divesting men of it must be disuse of the dis- 
cipline out of which it has arisen, yet a positive, and even 
something of a drastic discipline to the contrary effect 
need not be altogether ineffectual in bringing about its 
obsolescence. The case of the Chinese people seems to 
argue something of the sort. Not that the Chinese are 
simply and neutrally unpatriotic ; they appear also to be 
well charged with disloyalty to their alien rulers. But 
along with a sense of being on the defensive in their 
common concerns, there is also the fact that they appear 
not to be appreciably patriotic in the proper sense; they 

144 On the Nature of Peace 

are not greatly moved by a spirit of nationality. And 
this failure of the national spirit among them can scarcely 
be set down to a neutral disuse of that discipline which 
has on the other hand induced a militant nationalism in 
the peoples of Christendom ; it should seem more prob- 
able, at least, that this relative absence of a national am- 
bition is traceable in good part to its having been posi- 
tively bred out of them by the stern repression of all such 
aspirations under the autocratic rule of their alien masters. 

Peace" on terms of submission and non-resistance to 
the ordinary exactions and rulings of those Imperial au- 
thorities to whom such submission may become neces- 
sary, then, will be contingent on the virtual abeyance of 
the spirit of national pride in the peoples who so are to 
come under Imperial rule. A sufficient, by no means nec- 
essarily a total, elimination or decadence of this proclivity 
will be the condition precedent of any practicable scheme 
for a general peace on this footing. How large an allow- 
ance of such animus these prospectively subject peoples 
might still carry, without thereby assuring the defeat of 
any such plan, would in great measure depend on the 
degree of clemency or rigor with which the superior au- 
thority might enforce its rule. It is not that a peace 
plan of this nature need precisely be considered to fall 
outside the limits of possibility, on account of this neces- 
sary condition, but it is at the best a manifestly doubtful 
matter. Advocates of a negotiated peace should not fail 
to keep in mind and make public that the plan which they 
advocate carries with it, as a sequel or secondary phase, 
such an unconditional surrender and a consequent regime 
of non-resistance, and that there still is grave doubt 
whether the peoples of these Western nations are at pres- 

Peace Without Honour 145 

ent in a sufficiently tolerant frame of mind, or can hi the 
calculable future come in for such a tolerantly neutral 
attitude in point of national pride, as to submit in any 
passable fashion to any alien Imperial rule. 

If the spiritual difficulty presented by this prevalent 
spirit of national pride sufficiently stubborn still, how- 
ever inane a conceit it may seem on sober reflection if 
this animus of factional insubordination could be over- 
come or in some passable measure be conciliated or abated, 
there is much to be said in favor of such a plan of peace- 
able submission to an extraneous and arbitrary authority, 
and therefore also for that plan of negotiated peace by 
means of which events would be put in train for its real- 

Any passably dispassionate consideration of the pro- 
jected regime will come unavoidably to the conclusion that 
the prospectively subject peoples should have no legiti- 
mate apprehension of loss or disadvantage in the material 
respect. It is, of course, easy for an unreflecting person to 
jump to the conclusion that subjection to an alien power 
must bring grievous burdens, in the way of taxes and 
similar impositions. But reflection will immediately show 
that no appreciable increase, over the economic burdens 
already carried by the populace under their several na- 
tional establishments, could come of such a move. 

As bearing on this question it is well to call to mind 
that the contemplated imperial dominion is designed to 
be very wide-reaching and with very ample powers. Its 
nearest historical analogue, of course, is the Roman impe- 
rial dominion in the days of the Antonines and that 
the nearest analogue to the projected German peace is 
the Roman peace, in the days of its best security. There 
is every warrant for the presumption that the contem- 

146 On the Nature of Peace 

plated Imperial dominion is to be substantially all-inclu- 
sive. Indeed there is no stopping place for the projected 
enterprise short of an all-inclusive dominion. And there 
will consequently be no really menacing outside power to 
be provided against. Consequently there will be but little 
provision necessary for the common defense, as com- 
pared, e. g., with the aggregate of such provision found 
necessary for self-defense on part of the existing nations 
acting in severalty and each jealously guarding its own 
national integrity. Indeed, compared with the burden of 
competitive armaments, to which the peoples of Europe 
have been accustomed, the need of any armed force under 
the new regime should be an inconsiderable matter, even 
when there is added to the necessary modicum of defen- 
sive preparation the more imperative and weightier pro- 
vision of force with which to keep the peace at home. 

Into the composition of this necessary modicum of 
armed force slight if any contingents of men would be 
drawn from the subject peoples, for the reason that no 
great numbers would be needed; as also because no 
devoted loyalty to the dynasty could reasonably be looked 
for among them, even if no positive insecurity were felt 
to be involved in their employment. On this head the 
projected scheme unambiguously commends itself as a 
measure of economy, both in respect of the pecuniary bur- 
dens demanded and as regards the personal annoyance 
of military service. 

As a further count, it is to be presumed that the bur- 
den of the Imperial government and its bureaucratic ad- 
ministration what would be called the cost of main- 
tenance and repairs of the dynastic establishment and its 
apparatus of control would be borne by the subject peo- 
ples. Here again one is warranted in looking for a sub- 

Peace Without Honour 147 

stantial economy to be effected by such a centralised 
authority, and a consequent lighter aggregate burden on 
the subjects. Doubtless, the "overhead charges" would 
not be reduced to their practicable minimum. Such a 
governmental establishment, with its bureaucratic person- 
nel, its "civil list" and its privileged classes, would not be 
conducted on anything like a parsimonious footing. There 
is no reason to apprehend any touch of modesty in the 
exactions of such a dynastic establishment for itself or 
in behalf of its underlying hierarchy of gentlefolk. 

There is also to be counted in, in the concrete instance 
on which the argument here turns, a more or less con- 
siderable burden of contributions toward the maintenance 
and augmentation of that culture that has been the topic 
of so many encomiums. At this point it should be recalled 
that it is- the pattern of Periclean Athens that is continu- 
ally in mind in these encomiums. Which brings up, in 
this immediate connection, the dealings of Periclean 
Athens with the funds of the League, and the source as 
well as the destination of these surplus funds. Out of 
it all came the works on the Acropolis, together with 
much else of intellectual and artistic life that converged 
upon and radiated from this Athenian center of culture. 
The vista of Denkmdler that so opens to the vision of a 
courageous fancy is in itself such a substance of things 
hoped for as should stir the heart of all humane persons. 1 
The cost of this subvention of Culture would doubtless 
be appreciable, but those grave men who have spent most 
thought on this prospective cultural gain to be had from 
the projected Imperial rule appear to entertain no doubt 
as to its being worth all that it would cost. 

Wenk 'mal! 

148 On the Nature of Peace 

Any one who is inclined to rate the prospective pecu- 
niary costs and losses high would doubtless be able to find 
various and sundry items of minor importance to add to 
this short list of general categories on the side of cost; 
but such additional items, not fairly to be included under 
these general captions, would after all be of minor im- 
portance, in the aggregate or in detail, and would not 
appreciably affect the grand balance of pecuniary profit 
and loss to be taken account of in any appraisal of the 
projected Imperial regime. There should evidently be 
little ground to apprehend that its installation would en- 
tail a net loss or a net increase of pecuniary burdens. 
There is, of course, the ill-defined and scarcely definable 
item of expenditure under the general head of Gentility, 
Dignity, Distinction, Magnificence, or whatever term may 
seem suitable to designate that consumption of goods and 
services that goes to maintain the high repute of the Court 
and to keep the underlying gentlefolk in countenance. In 
its pecuniary incidence this line of (necessary) expen- 
diture belongs under the rubric of Conspicuous Waste; 
and one will always have to face the disquieting flexibility 
of this item of expenditure. The consumptive demand of 
this kind is in an eminent degree "indefinitely extensible," 
as the phrasing of the economists would have it, and as 
various historical instances of courtly splendor and fash- 
ionable magnificence will abundantly substantiate. There 
is a constant proclivity to advance this conventional 
"standard of living" to the limit set by the available 
means ; and yet these conventional necessities will ordi- 
narily not, in the aggregate, take up all the available 
means; although now and again, as under the Ancien 
Regime, and perhaps in Imperial Rome, the standard of 
splendid living may also exceed the current means in 

Peace Without Honour 149 

hand and lead to impoverishment of the underlying com- 

An analysis of the circumstances governing this flexi- 
bility of the conventional standard of living and of pe- 
cuniary magnificence can not be gone into here. In the 
case under consideration it will have to be left as an inde- 
terminate but considerable item in the burden of cost 
which the projected Imperial rule may be counted on to 
impose on the underlying peoples. The cost of the Im- 
perial court, nobility, and civil service, therefore, would 
be a matter of estimate, on which no close agreement 
would be expected ; and yet, here as in an earlier connec- 
tion, it seems a reasonable expectation that sufficient dig- 
nity and magnificence could be put in evidence by such 
a large-scale establishment at a lower aggregate cost than 
the aggregate of expenditures previously incurred for the 
like ends by various nations working in severalty and at 
cross 'purposes. 

Doubtless it would be altogether a mistaken view of this 
production of dignity by means of a lavish expenditure on 
superfluities, to believe that the same principle of economy 
should apply here as was found applicable in the matter 
of armament for defense. With the installation of a col- 
lective national establishment, to include substantially all 
the previously competing nations, the need of defensive 
armament should in all reason decline to something very 
inconsiderable indeed. But it would be hasty to conclude 
that with the coalescence of these nations under one para- 
mount control the need of creating notoriety and prestige 
for this resulting central establishment by the consump- 
tion of decorative superfluities would likewise decline. 
The need of such dignity and magnificence is only in part, 
perhaps a minor part, of a defensive character. For the 

ISO On the Nature of Peace 

greater part, no doubt, the motive to this conspicuously 
wasteful consumption is personal vanity, in Imperial pol- 
icy as well as in the private life of fashion, or perhaps 
one should more deferentially say that it is a certain range 
of considerations which would be identified as personal 
vanity in case they were met with among men beneath 
the Imperial level. And so far as the creation of this form 
of "good-will" by this manner of advertising is traceable 
to such, or equivalent, motives of a personal incidence, 
the provocation to economy along this line would presum- 
ably not be a notable factor in the case. And one returns 
perforce to the principle already spoken of above, that the 
consumptive need of superfluities is indefinitely exten- 
sible, with the resulting inference that nothing conclusive 
is to be said as to the prospective magnitude of this item 
in the Imperial bill of expense, or of the consequent pe- 
cuniary burdens which it would impose on the underlying 

So far the argument has run on the pecuniary incidence 
of this projected Imperial dominion as it falls on the 
underlying community as a whole, with no attempt to dis- " 
criminate between the divergent interests of the different 
classes and conditions of men that go to make up any 
modern community. The question in hand is a question 
of pecuniary burdens, and therefore of the pecuniary in- 
terests of these several distinguishable classes or condi- 
tions of men. In all these modern nations that now stand 
in the article of decision between peace by submission 
or a doubtful and melancholy alternative, in all of them 
men are by statute and custom inviolably equal before 
the law, of course; they are ungraded and masterless men 
before the law. But these same peoples are also alike 

Peace Without Honour 151 

in the respect that pecuniary duties and obligations among 
them are similarly sacred and inviolable under the dis- 
passionate findings of the law. This pecuniary equality 
is, in effect, an impersonal equality between pecuniary 
magnitudes ; from which it follows that these citizens of 
the advanced nations are not ungraded men in the pe- 
cuniary respect, nor are they masterless, in so far as a 
greater pecuniary force will always, under this impersonal 
equality of the law, stand in a relation of mastery toward 
a lesser one. 

Class distinctions, except pecuniary distinctions, have 
fallen away. But all these modern nations are made up 
of pecuniary classes, differing from one another by minute 
gradations in the marginal cases, but falling, after all, 
and in the large, into two broadly and securely distin- 
guishable pecuniary categories : those who have more and 
those who have less. Statisticians have been at pains to 
ascertain that a relatively very small numerical minority 
of the citizens in these modern nations own all but a rel- 
atively very small proportion of the aggregate wealth in 
the country. So that it appears quite safe to say that in 
such a country as America, e. g., something less than ten 
percent of the inhabitants own something more than ninety 
percent of the country's wealth. It would scarcely be a 
wild overstraining of its practical meaning to say that 
this population is made up of two classes : those who own 
the country's wealth, and those who do not. In strict ac- 
curacy, as before the law, this characterisation will not 
hold ; whereas in practical effect, it is a sufficiently close 
approximation. This latter class, who have substantially 
no other than a fancied pecuniary interest in the nation's 
material fortunes, are the category often spoken of as 
The Common Man. It is not necessary, nor is it desired, 

152 On the Nature of Peace 

to find a corresponding designation for the other cate- 
gory, those who own. 

The articulate recognition of this division into con- 
trasted pecuniary classes or conditions, with correspond- 
ingly (at least potentially) divergent pecuniary interests, 
need imply no degree of approval or disapproval of the 
arrangement which is so recognised. The recognition of 
it is necessary to a perspicuous control of the argument, 
as bears on the possible systematic and inherent discrep- 
ancy among these men in respect of their material inter- 
ests under the projected Imperial rule. Substantially, it 
is a distinction between those who have and those who 
have not, and in a question of prospective pecuniary loss 
the man who has nothing to lose is differently placed from 
the one who has. It would perhaps seem flippant, and 
possibly lacking in the courtesy due one's prospective lord 
paramount to say with the poet, Cantabit vacuus coram 
latrone viator. 

But the whole case is not so simple. It is only so long 
as the projected pecuniary inroad is conceived as a simple 
sequestration of wealth in hand, that such a characterisa- 
tion can be made to serve. The Imperial aim is not a 
passing act of pillage, but a perpetual usufruct ; and the 
whole question takes on a different and more complex 
shape when it touches the enduring conditions of life 
and livelihood. The citizen who has nothing, or who has 
no capitalisable source of unearned income, yet has a 
pecuniary interest in a livelihood to be gained from day 
to day, and he is yet vulnerable in the pecuniary respect 
in that his livelihood may with the utmost facility be laid 
under contribution by various and sundry well-tried con- 
trivances. Indeed, the common man who depends for his 
livelihood on his daily earnings is in a more immediately 

Peace Without Honour 153 

precarious position than those who have something appre- 
ciable laid up against a rainy day, in the shape of a cap- 
italised source of income. Only that it is still doubtful 
if his position is precarious in such a fashion as to lay 
him open to a notable increase of hardship, or to loss 
of the amenities of life, in the same relative degree as his 
well-to-do neighbour. 

In point of fact it may well be doubted if this common 
man has anything to apprehend in the way of added hard- 
ship or loss of creature comforts under the contemplated 
regime of Imperial' tutelage. He would presumably find 
himself in a precarious case under the arbitrary and irre- 
sponsible authority of an alien master working through an 
alien master class. The doubt which presents itself is as 
to whether this common man would be more precariously 
placed, or would come in for a larger and surer sum of 
hard usage and scant living, under this projected order 
of things, than what he already is exposed to in his pe- 
cuniary relations with his well-to-do compatriots under 
the current system of law and order. 

Under this current regime of law and order, according 
to the equitable principles of Natural Rights, the man 
without means has no pecuniary rights which his well- 
to-do pecuniary master is bound to respect. This may 
have been an unintended, as it doubtless was an unfore- 
seen, outcome of the move out of feudalism and prescrip- 
tive rights and immunities, into the system of individual 
liberty and manhood franchise; but as commonly hap- 
pens in case of afiy substantial change in the scheme of 
institutional arrangements, unforeseen consequences come 
in along with those that have been intended. In that 
period of history when Western Europe was gathering 
that experience out of which the current habitual scheme 

154 On the Nature of Peace 

of law and order has come, the right of property and free 
contract was a complement and safeguard to that indi- 
vidual initiative and masterless equality of men for which 
the spokesmen of the new era contended. That it is no 
longer so at every turn, or even in the main, in later time, 
is in great part due to changes of the pecuniary order, 
that have come on since then, and that seem not to have 
cast their shadow before. 

In all good faith, and with none but inconsequential 
reservations, the material fortunes of modern civilised 
men together with much else have so been placed on a 
pecuniary footing, with little to safeguard them at any 
point except the inalienable right of pecuniary self-direc- 
tion and initiative, in an environment where virtually all 
the indispensable means of pecuniary self-direction and 
initiative are in the hands of that contrasted category of 
owners spoken of above. A numerical minority under 
ten percent of the population constitutes a conclusive 
pecuniary majority over ninety percent of the means 
under a system of law and order that turns on the in- 
alienable right of owners to dispose of the means in hand 
as may suit their convenience and profit, always barring 
recourse to illegal force or fraud. There is, however, a 
very appreciable margin of legal "recourse to force and 
of legally protected fraud available in case of need. Of 
course the expedients here referred to as legally available 
force and fraud in the defense of pecuniary rights and 
the pursuit of pecuniary gain are not force and fraud de 
jure but only de facto. They are further, and well known, 
illustrations of how the ulterior consequences of given 
institutional arrangements and given conventionalised 
principles (habits of thought) of conduct may in time 
come to run at cross purposes with the initial purpose 

Peace Without Honour 155 

that led to the acceptance of these institutions and to the 
confirmation and standardisation of these habitual forms 
of conduct. For the time being, however, they are "fund- 
amentally and eternally right and good." 

Being a pecuniary majority what may be called a 
majority of the corporate stock of the nation, it is also 
fundamentally and eternally right and good that the pe- 
cuniary interests of the owners of the material means of 
life should rule unabated in all those matters of public 
policy that touch on the material fortunes of the com- 
munity at large. Barring a slight and intermittent mutter 
of discontent, this arrangement has also the cordial ap- 
proval of popular sentiment in these modern democratic 
nations. One need only recall the paramount importance 
which is popularly attached to the maintenance and ex- 
tension of the nation's trade for the- use of the investors 
or the perpetuation of a protective tariff for the use 
of the protected business concerns or, again, the scrupu- 
lous regard with which such a body of public servants as 
the Interstate Commerce Commission will safeguard the 
legitimate claim of the railway companies to a "reason- 
able" rate of earnings on the capitalised value of the 
presumed earning-capacity of their property. 

Again, in view of the unaccustomed freedom with 
which it is here necessary to speak of these delicate mat- 
ters, it may be in place to disclaim all intention to criticise 
the established arrangements on their merits as details of 
public policy. All that comes in question here, touching 
these and the like features of the established law and 
order, is the bearing of all this on the material fortunes 
of the common man under the current regime, as con- 
trasted with what he would reasonably have to look for 

156 On the Nature of Peace 

under the projected regime of Imperial tutelage that 
would come in, consequent upon this national surrender 
to Imperial dominion. 

In these democratic countries public policy is guided 
primarily by considerations of business expediency, and 
the administration, as Veil as the legislative power, is in 
the hands of businessmen, chosen avowedly on the ground 
of their businesslike principles and ability. There is no 
power in such a community that can over-rule the exigen- 
cies of business, nor would popular sentiment countenance 
any exercise of power that should traverse these exigen- 
cies, or that would act to restrain trade or discourage the 
pursuit of gain. An apparent exception to the rule occurs 
in wartime, when military exigencies may over-rule the 
current demands of business traffic ; but the exception is 
in great part only apparent, in that the warlike operations 
are undertaken in whole or in part with a view to the 
protection or extension of business traffic. 

National surveillance and regulation of business traffic 
in these countries hitherto, ever since and in so far as 
the modern democratic order of things has taken effect, 
has uniformly been of the nature of interference with 
trade and investment in behalf of the nation's mercantile 
community at large, as seen in port and shipping relations 
and in the consular service, or in behalf of particular 
favored groups or classes of business concerns, as in pro- 
tective tariffs and subsidies. In all this national manage- 
ment of pecuniary affairs, under modern democratic prin- 
ciples, the common man comes into the case only as raw 
material of business traffic, as consumer or as laborer. 
He is one of the industrial agencies by use of which the 
businessman who employs him supplies himself with 

Peace Without Honour 157 

goods for the market, or he is one of the units of con- 
sumptive demand that make up this market in which the 
business man sells his goods, and so "realises" on his in- 
vestment. He is, of course, free, under modern principles 
of the democratic order, to deal or not to deal with this 
business community, whether as laborer or as consumer, 
or as small-scale producer engaged in purveying materials 
or services on terms defined by the community of business 
interests engaged on so large a scale as to count in their 
determination. That is to say, he is free de jure to take 
or leave the terms offered. De facto he is only free to 
take them with inconsequential exceptions the alterna- 
tive being obsolescence by disuse, not to choose a harsher 
name for a distasteful eventuality. 

The general ground on which the business system, as 
it works under the over-ruling exigencies of the so-called 
"big business/' so defines the terms of life for the com- 
mon man, who works and buys, is the ground afforded 
by the principle of "charging what the traffic will bear ;" 
that is to say, fixing the terms of hiring, buying and selling 
at such a figure as will yield the largest net return to the 
business concerns in whom, collectively or in severalty, 
the discretion vests. Discretion in these premises does not 
vest in any business concern that does not articulate with 
the system of "big business," or that does not dispose of 
resources sufficient to make it a formidable member of 
the system. Whether these concerns act in severalty or 
by collusion and conspiracy, in so defining the pecuniary 
terms of life for the community at large, is substantially 
an idle question, so far as bears on the material interest 
of the common man. The base-line is still what the traffic 
will bear, and it is still adhered to, so nearly as the human 
infirmity of the discretionary captains of industry will 

158 On the Nature of Peace 

admit, whether the due approximation to this base-line 
is reached by a process of competitive bidding or by col- 
lusive advisement. 

The generalisation so offered, touching the material 
conditions of life for the common man under the modern 
rule of big business, may seem unwarrantably broad. 
It may be worth while to take note of more than one point 
in qualification of it, chiefly to avoid the appearance of 
having overlooked any of the material circumstances of 
the case. The "system" of large business, working its 
material consequences through the system of large-scale 
industry, but more particularly by way of the large-scale 
and wide-reaching business of trade in the proper sense, 
draws into the net of its control all parts of the com- 
munity and all its inhabitants, in some degree of depend- 
ence. But there is always, hitherto, an appreciable frac- 
tion of the inhabitants as, e. g., outlying agricultural 
sections that are in a "backward" state who are by no 
means closely bound in the orderly system of business, 
or closely dependent on the markets. They may be said 
to enjoy a degree of independence, by virtue of their 
foregoing as much as may be of the advantages offered by 
modern industrial specialisation. So also there are the 
minor and interstitial trades that are still carried on by 
handicraft methods ; these, too, are still somewhat loosely 
held in the fabric of the business system. There is one 
thing and another in this way to be taken account of in 
any exhaustive survey, but the accounting for them will 
after all amount to nothing better than a gleaning of 
remnants and partial exceptions, such as will in no ma- 
terial degree derange the general proposition in hand. 

Again, there runs through the length and breadth of 
this business community a certain measure of incom- 

Peace Without Honour 159 

petence or inefficiency of management, as seen from the 
point of view of the conceivable perfect working of the 
system as a whole. It may be due to a slack attention 
here and there ; or to the exigencies of business strategy 
which may constrain given business concerns to an occa- 
sional attitude of "watchful waiting" in the hope of catch- 
ing a rival off his guard ; or to a lack of perfect mutual 
understanding among the discretionary businessmen, due 
sometimes to an over-careful guarding of trade secrets 
or advance information; or, as also happens, and quite 
excusably, to a lack of perfect mutual confidence among 
these businessmen, as to one another's entire good faith 
or good-will. The system is after all a competitive one, 
in the sense that each of the discretionary directors of 
business is working for his own pecuniary gain, whether 
in cooperation with his fellows or not. "An honest man 
will bear watching." As in other collusive organisations 
for gain, confederates are apt to fall out when it comes td 
a division of what is in hand. In one way and another 
the system is beset with inherent infirmities, which hinder 
its perfect work; ^nd in so far it will fall short of the 
full realisation of that rule of business that inculcates 
charging what the traffic will bear, and also in so far 
the pressure which the modern system of business man- 
agement brings to bear on the common man will also fall 
short of the last straw perhaps even of the next-to-the- 
last. Again it turns out to be a question not of the fail- 
ure of the general proposition as formulated, but rather 
as to the closeness of approximation to its theoretically 
perfect work. It may be remarked by the way that 
vigilant and impartial surveillance of this system of busi- 
ness enterprise by an external authority interested only 
in aggregate results, rather than in the differential gains 

160 On the Nature of Peace 

of the interested individuals, might hopefully be counted 
on to correct some of these short-comings which the sys- 
tem shows when running loose under the guidance of its 
own multifarious incentives. 

On the opposite side of the account, it is also worth 
noting that, while modern business management may now 
and again fall short of what the traffic will bear, it hap- 
pens more commonly that its exactions will exceed that 
limit. This will particularly be true in businessmen's 
dealings with hired labor, as also and perhaps with equally 
far-reaching consequences in an excessive recourse to 
sophistications and adulterants and an excessively par- 
simonious provision for the safety, health or comfort of 
their customers as, e. g., in passenger traffic by rail, 
water or tramway. The discrepancy to which attention is 
invited here is due to a discrepancy between business ex- 
pediency, that is expediency for the purpose of gain by 
a given businessman, on the one hand, and serviceability 
to the common good, on the other hand. The business 
concern's interest in the traffic in which it engages is a 
short-term interest, or an interest in the short-term re- 
turns, as contrasted with the long-term or enduring inter- 
est which the community at large has in the public serv- 
ice over which any such given business concern disposes. 
The business incentive is that afforded by the prospective 
net pecuniary gain from the traffic, substantially an inter- 
est in profitable sales ; while the community at large, or 
the common man that goes to make up such a commu- 
nity, has a material interest in this traffic only as regards 
the services rendered and the enduring effects that follow 
from it. 

The businessman has not, or at least is commonly not 
influenced by, any interest in the ulterior consequences 

Peace Without Honour 161 

of the transactions in which he is immediately engaged. 
This appears to hold true in an accentuated degree in the 
domain of that large-scale business that draws its gains 
from the large-scale modern industry and is managed 
on the modern footing of corporation finance. This mod- 
ern fashion of business organisation and management ap- 
parently has led to a substantial shortening of the term 
over which any given investor maintains an effective in- 
terest in any given corporate enterprise, in which his 
investments may be placed for the time being. With the 
current practice of organising industrial and mercantile 
enterprises on a basis of vendible securities, and with the 
nearly complete exemption from personal responsibility 
and enduring personal attachment to any one corporate en- 
terprise which this financial expedient has brought, it has 
come about that in the common run of cases the investor, 
as well as the directorate, in any given enterprise, has an 
interest only for the time being. The average term over 
which it is (pecuniarily) incumbent on the modern busi- 
nessman to take account of the working of any given 
enterprise has shortened so far that the old-fashioned 
accountability, that once was depended on to dictate a 
sane and considerate management with a 'view to perma- 
nent good-will, has in great measure become inoperative. 
By and large, it seems unavoidable that the pecuniary 
interests of the businessmen on the one hand and the 
material interests of the community on the other hand 
are diverging in a more and more pronounced degree, due 
to institutional circumstances over which no prompt con- 
trol can be had without immediate violation of that 
scheme of personal rights in which the constitution of 
modern democratic society is grounded. The quandary 
in which these communities find themselves, as an out- 

162 On the Nature of Peace 

come of their entrance upon "the simple and obvious 
system of Natural Liberty," is shown in a large and 
instructive way by what is called "labor trouble," and 
in a more recondite but no less convincing fashion by the 
fortunes of the individual workman under the modern 

The cost of production of a modern workman has con- 
stantly increased, with the advance of the industrial arts. 
The period of preparation, of education and training, 
necessary to turn out competent workmen, has been in- 
creasing; and the period of full workmanlike efficiency 
has been shortening, in those industries that employ the 
delicate and exacting processes of the modern technol- 
ogy. The shortening of this working-life of the workman 
is due both to a lengthening of the necessary period of 
preparation, and to the demand of these processes for 
so full a use of the workman's forces that even the be- 
ginning of senescence will count as a serious disability, 
in many occupations as a fatal disability. It is also 
a well ascertained fact that effectual old age will be 
brought on at an earlier period by overwork ; overwork 
shortens the working life-time of the workman. Thor- 
ough speeding-up ("Scientific Management"?) will un- 
duly shorten this working life-time, and so it may, some- 
what readily, result in an uneconomical consumption of 
the community's man-power, by consuming the workmen 
at a higher rate of speed, a higher pressure, with a more 
rapid rate of deterioration, than would give the largest 
net output of product per unit of man-power available, 
or per unit of cost of production of such man-power. 

On this head the guiding incentives of the businessman 
and the material interest of the community at large not 
to speak of the selfish interest of the individual workman 

Peace Without Honour 163 

are systematically at variance. The cost of production 
of workmen does not fall on the business concern which 
employs them, at least not in such definite fashion as to 
make it appear that the given business concern or busi- 
nessman has a material interest in the economical con- 
sumption of the man power embodied in this given body 
of employees. Some slight and exceptional qualification 
of this statement is to be noted, in those cases where the 
processes in use are such as to require special training, 
not to be had except by a working habituation to these 
processes in the particular industrial plant in question. 
So far as such special training, to be had only as em- 
ployees of the given concern, is a necessary part of the 
workman's equipment for this particular work, so far 
the given employer bears a share and an interest in the 
cost of production of the workmen employed; and so 
far, therefore, the employer has also a pecuniary interest 
in the economical use of his employees; which usually 
shows itself in the way of some special precautions being 
taken to prevent the departure of these workmen so long 
as there is a clear pecuniary loss involved in replacing 
them with men who have not yet had the special training 
required. Evidently this qualifying consideration covers 
no great proportion of the aggregate man-power con- 
sumed in industrial enterprises under business manage- 
ment. And apart from the instances, essentially excep- 
tional, where such a special consideration comes in, the 
businessmen in charge will, quite excusably as things go, 
endeavour to consume the man-power of which they dis- 
pose in the persons of their employees, not at the rate 
that would be most economical to the community at large, 
in view of the cost of their replacement, nor at such a 
rate as would best suit the taste or the viability of the 

164 On the Nature of Peace 

particular workman, but at such a rate as will yield the 
largest net pecuniary gain to the employer. 

There is on record an illustrative, and indeed an illus- 
trious, instance of such canny productive consumption of 
man-power carried out systematically and with consist- 
ently profitable effect in one of the staple industries of the 
country. In this typical, though exceptionally thorough- 
going and lucrative enterprise, the set rule of the man- 
agement was, to employ none but select workmen, in 
each respective line of work; to procure such select 
workmen and retain them by offering wages slightly over 
the ordinary standard ; to work them at the highest pace 
and pressure attainable with such a picked body; and 
to discharge them on the first appearance of aging or of 
failing powers. In the rules of the management was also 
included the negative proviso that the concern assumed 
no responsibility for the subsequent fortunes of dis- 
, charged workmen, in the way of pension, insurance or 
the like. 

This enterprise was highly successful and exceedingly 
profitable, even beyond the high average of profits among 
enterprises in the same line of business. Out of it came 
one of the greater and more illustrious fortunes that 
have been accumulated during the past century; a for- 
tune which has enabled one of the most impressive and 
most gracious of this generation's many impressive phi- 
lanthropists, never weary in well-doing; but who, through 
this cannily gainful consumption of man-power, has been 
placed in the singular position of being unable, in spite 
of avowedly unremitting endeavour, to push his con- 
tinued disbursements in the service of humanity up to 
the figure of his current income. The case in question 
is one of the most meritorious known to the records of 

Peace Without Honour 165 

modern business, and while it will conveniently serve to 
illustrate many an other, and perhaps more consequential 
truth come to realisation in the march of Triumphant 
Democracy, it will also serve to show the gainfulness of 
an unreservedly canny consumption of man-power with 
an eye single to one's own net gain in terms of money. 

Evidently this is a point in the articulation of the 
modern economic system where a sufficiently ruthless 
outside authority, not actuated by a primary regard for 
the pecuniary interests of the employers, might conceiv- 
ably with good effect enforce a more economical con- 
sumption of the country's man-power. It is not a mat- 
ter on which one prefers to dwell, but it can do no harm 
to take note of the fact for once in a way that these 
several national establishments of the democratic order, 
as they are now organised and administered, do some- 
what uniformly and pervasively operate with an effectual 
view to the advantage of a class, so far as may plaus- 
ibly be done. They are controlled by and administered 
in behalf of those elements of the population that, for the 
purpose in hand, make up a single loose-knit class, the 
class that lives by income rather than by work. It may 
be called the class of the business interests, or of cap- 
ital, or of gentlemen. It all comes to much the same, for 
the purpose in hand. 

The point in speaking of this contingent whose place 
in the economy of human affairs it is to consume, or to 
own, or to pursue a margin of profit, is simply that of 
contrasting this composite human contingent with the 
common man; whose numbers account for some nine- 
tenths or more of the community, while his class accounts 
for something less than one-tenth of the invested wealth, 

166 On the Nature of Peace 

and appreciably less than that proportion of the discre- 
tionary national establishment, the government, national 
or local, courts, attorneys, civil service, diplomatic and 
consular, military and naval. The arrangement may be 
called a gentlemen's government, if one would rather 
have it that way ; but a gentleman is necessarily one who 
lives on free income from invested wealth without such 
a source of free, that is to say unearned, income he be- 
comes a decayed gentleman. Again, pushing the phras- 
ing back a step farther toward the ground facts, there 
are those who would speak of the current establishments 
as "capitalistic;" but this term is out of line in that it 
fails to touch the human element in the case, and institu- 
tions, such as governmental establishments and their func- 
tioning, are after all nothing but the accustomed ways 
and means of human behavior; so that "capitalistic" 
becomes a synonym for "businessmen's" government so 
soon as it is designated in terms of the driving incentives 
and the personnel. It is an organisation had with a view 
to the needs of business (i. e. pecuniary) enterprise, and 
is made up of businessmen and gentlemen, which comes 
to much the same, since a gentleman is only a business- 
man in the second or some later generation. Except for 
the slightly odious suggestion carried by the phrase, one 
might aptly say that the gentleman, in this bearing, is 
only a businessman gone to seed. 

By and large, and taking the matter naively at the 
simple face value of the material gain or loss involved, 
it should seem something of an idle question to the com- 
mon man whether his collective affairs are to be man- 
and by a home-bred line of businessmen and their suc- 
cessive filial generations of gentlemen, with a view to 
accelerate the velocity and increase the volume of com- 

Peace Without Honour 167 

petitive gain and competitive spending, on the one hand, 
or by an alien line of officials, equally aloof from his 
common interests, and managing affairs with a view to 
the usufruct of his productive powers in furtherance of 
the Imperial dominion. 

Not that the good faith or the generous intentions of 
these governments of gentlemen is questioned or is in 
any degree questionable ; what is here spoken of is only 
the practical effect of the policies which they pursue, 
doubtless with benevolent intentions and well-placed com- 
placency. In effect, things being as they are today in 
the civilised world's industry and trade, it happens, as 
in some sort an unintended but all-inclusive accident, that 
the guidance of affairs by business principles works at 
cross purposes with the material interests of the com- 
mon man. 

So ungraceful a view of the sacred core of this modern 
democratic organisation will need whatever evidence can 
be cited to keep it in countenance. Therefore indulgence 
is desired for one further count in this distasteful recital 
of ineptitudes inherent in this institutional scheme of civ- 
ilised life. This count comes under the head of what 
may be called capitalistic sabotage. "Sabotage" is em- 
ployed to designate a wilful retardation, interruption or 
obstruction of industry by peaceable, and ordinarily by 
legally defensible, measures. In its present application, 
particularly, there is no design to let the term denote or 
insinuate a recourse to any expedients or any line of 
conduct that is in any degree legally dubious, or that is 
even of questionable legitimacy. 

Sabotage so understood, as not comprising recourse 
to force or fraud, is a necessary and staple expedient of 
business management, and its employment is grounded in 

168 On the Nature of Peace 

the elementary and indefeasible rights of ownership. 
It is simply that the businessman, like any other owner, 
is vested with the right freely to use or not to use his 
property for any given purpose. His decision, for rea- 
sons of his own, not to employ the property at his dis- 
posal in a particular way at a particular time, is well 
and blamelessly within his legitimate discretion, under 
the rights of property as universally accepted and de- 
fended by modern nations. In the particular instance 
of the American nation he is protected in this right by 
a constitutional provision that he must not be deprived of 
his property without due process of law. When the prop- 
erty at his disposal is in the shape of industrial plant or 
industrial material, means of transportation or stock of 
goods awaiting distribution, then his decision not to em- 
ploy this property, or to limit its use to something less 
than full capacity, in the way for which it is adapted, be- 
comes sabotage, normally and with negligible exceptions. 
In so doing he hinders, retards or obstructs the working 
of the country's industrial forces by so much. It is a 
matter of course and of absolute necessity to the con- 
duct of business, that any discretionary businessman must 
be free to deal or not to deal in any given case ; to limit 
or to withhold the equipment under his control, without 
reservation. Business discretion and business strategy, 
in fact, has no other means by which to work out its 
aims. So that, in effect, all business sagacity reduces 
itself in the last analysis to a judicious use of sabotage. 
Under modern conditions of large business, particularly, 
the relation of the discretionary businessman to industry 
is that of authoritative permission and of authoritative 
limitation or stoppage, and on his shrewd use of this 
authority depends the gainfulness of his enterprise. 

Peace Without Honour 169 

If this authority were exercised with an eye single to 
the largest and most serviceable output of goods and 
services, or to the most economical use of the country's 
material resources and man-power, regardless of pecun- 
iary consequences, the course of management so carried 
out would be not sabotage but industrial strategy. But 
business is carried on for pecuniary gain, not with an 
unreserved view to the largest and most serviceable out- 
put or to the economical use of resources. The volume 
and serviceability of the output must wait unreservedly 
on the very particular pecuniary question of what quan- 
tity and what degree of serviceability will yield the largest 
net return in terms of price. Uneconomical use of equip- 
ment, labor and resources is necessarily an everyday mat- 
ter under these circumstances, as in the duplication of 
plant and processes between rival concerns, and in the 
wasteful use of all resources that do not involve ex- 
penditure on the part of the given concern. 

It has been the traditional dogma among economists 
and publicists in these modern communities that free com- 
petition between the businessmen in charge will inde- 
feasibly act to bring the productiveness of industry to 
the highest practicable pitch and would lead to the most 
unreserved and vigilant endeavour to serve the com- 
munity's material needs at all points. The reasons for 
tfre failure of this genial expectation, particularly under 
latterday business management, might be shown in some 
detail, if that were needed to enforce the argument as it 
runs in the present connection. But a summary indica- 
tion of the commoner varieties and effects of sabotage 
as it is systematically applied in the businesslike con- 
duct of industry will serve the purpose as well and with 
less waste of words and patience. 

170 On the Nature of Peace 

It is usual to notice, and not unusual to deplore the 
duplication of plant and appliances in many lines of in- 
dustry, due to competitive management, as in factories 
engaged in the same class of manufacture, in parallel 
or otherwise competing railways and boat lines, in retail 
merchandising, and in some degree also in the wholesale 
trade. The result, of course, is sabotage; in the sense 
that this volume of appliances, materials and workmen 
are not employed to the best advantage for the com- 
munity. One effect of the arrangement is an increased 
necessary cost of the goods and services supplied by 
these means. The reason for it is competition for gain 
to be got from the traffic. That all this is an untoward 
state of things is recognised on all hands ; but no lively 
regret is commonly spent on the matter, since it is com- 
monly recognised that under the circumstances there Is 
no help for it except at the cost of a more untoward 

The competitive system having been tried and found 
good or at least so it is assumed it is felt that the 
system will have to be accepted with the defects of its 
qualities. Its characteristic qualities are held to be good, 
acceptable to the tastes of modern men whose habits 
of thought have been standardised in its terms; and it 
would be only reluctantly and by tardy concession that 
these modern men could bring themselves to give up that 
scheme of "Natural Liberty" within the framework of 
which runs this competitive system of business manage- 
ment and its wasteful manifolding of half -idle equipment 
and nugatory work. The common man, at the worst, 
comforts himself and his neighbour with the sage reflec- 
tion that "It might have been worse/' The businessmen, 
on the other hand, have also begun to take note of this 

Peace Without Honour 171 

systematic waste by duplication and consequent incom- 
petence, and have taken counsel how to intercept the 
waste and divert it to their own profit. The business- 
men's remedy is consolidation of competing concerns, and 
monopoly control. 

To the common man, with his preconceptions on the 
head of "restraint of trade," the proposed remedy seems 
more vicious than the evil it is designed to cure. The 
fault of the remedy plainly is not that the mismanage- 
ment of affairs due to competitive business can not be 
corrected by recourse to monopoly, but only that the 
community, it is presumed, would still suffer all the bur- 
dens and discomforts of the regime of competition and 
sabotage, with, possibly, further inconveniences and im- 
positions at the hands of the businesslike monopoly; 
which, men are agreed, may fairly be depended on to 
use its advantage unsparingly under the business prin- 
ciple of charging what the traffic will bear. 

There is also this other singular phenomenon in this 
modern industrial world, that something not very far 
short of one-half the industrial equipment systematically 
lies idle for something approaching one-half the time, 
or is worked only to one-half its capacity half the time ; 
not because of competition between these several indus- 
trial concerns, but because business conditions will not 
allow its continued productive use; because the volume 
of product that would be turned out if the equipment 
were working uninterruptedly at its full capacity could 
not be sold at remunerative prices. From time to time 
one establishment and another will shut down during a 
period of slack times, for the same reason. 

This state of things is singular only as seen from the 
point of view of the community's material interest, not 

172 On the Nature of Peace 

that it is in any degree unfamiliar or that any serious 
fault is found with the captains of industry for so shut- 
ting off the industrial process and letting the industrial 
equipment lie waste. As all men know, the exigencies of 
business will not tolerate production to supply the com- 
munity's needs under these circumstances; although, as 
is equally notorious, these slack times, when production 
of goods is unadvisable on grounds of business expedi- 
ency, are commonly times of wide-spread privation, 
"hard times," in the community at large, when the failure 
of the supply is keenly felt. 

It is not that the captains of industry are at fault in so 
failing, or refusing, to supply the needs of the commu- 
nity under these circumstances, but only that they are 
helpless under the exigencies of business. They can not 
supply the goods except for a price, indeed not except 
for a remunerative price, a price which will add some- 
thing to the capital values which they are venturing in 
their various enterprises. So long as the exigencies of 
price and of pecuniary gain rule the case, there is mani- 
festly no escaping this enforced idleness of the country's 
productive forces. 

It may not be out of place also to remark, by way of 
parenthesis, that this highly productive state of the in- 
dustrial arts, which is embodied in the industrial plant 
and processes that so are systematically and advisedly 
retarded or arrested under the rule of business, is at the 
same time the particular pride of civilised men and the 
most tangible achievement of the civilised world. 

A conservative estimate of this one item of capitalistic 
sabotage could scarcely appraise it at less than a twenty- 
five percent reduction from the normally possible pro- 
ductive capacity of the community, at an average over 

Peace Without Honour 173 

any considerable period; and a somewhat thorough re- 
view of the pertinent facts would probably persuade 
any impartial observer that, one year with another, such 
businesslike enforced idleness of plant and personnel 
lowers the actual output of the country's industry by 
something nearer fifty percent of its ordinary capacity 
when fully employed. To many, such an assertion may 
seem extravagant, but with further reflection on the well- 
known facts in the case it will seem less so in proportion 
as the unfamiliarity of it wears off. 

However, the point of attention in the case is not the 
precise, nor the approximate, percentages of this arrest 
and retardation, this partial neutralisation of modern im- 
provements in the industrial arts ; it is only the notorious 
fact that such arrest occurs, systematically and advisedly, 
under the rule of business exigencies, and that there is 
no corrective to be found for it that will comport with 
those fundamental articles of the democratic faith on 
which the businessmen necessarily proceed. Any effec- 
tual corrective would break the framework of demo- 
cratic law and order, since it would have to traverse the 
inalienable right of men who are born free and equal, 
each freely to deal or not to deal in any pecuniary con- 
juncture that arises. 

But it is at the same time plain enough that this, in 
the larger sense untoward, discrepancy between produc- 
tive capacity and current productive output can readily 
be corrected, in some appreciable degree at least, by any 
sufficient authority that shall undertake to control the 
country's industrial forces without regard to pecuniary 
profit and loss. Any authority competent to take over 
the control and regulate the conduct of the community's 
industry with a view to maximum output as counted by 

174 On the Nature of Peace 

weight and tale, rather than by net aggregate price-income 
over price-cost, can readily effect an appreciable increase 
in the effectual productive capacity ; but it can be done 
only by violating that democratic order of things within 
which business enterprise runs. The several belligerent 
nations of Europe are showing that it can be done, that 
the sabotage of business enterprise can be put aside by 
sufficiently heroic measures. And they are also showing 
that they are all aware, and have always been aware, that 
the conduct of industry on business principles is incom- 
petent to bring the largest practicable output of goods 
and services; incompetent to such a degree, indeed, as 
not to be tolerable in a season of desperate need, when 
the nation requires the full use of its productive forces, 
equipment and man-power, regardless of the pecuniary 
claims of individuals. 

Now, the projected Imperial dominion is a power of 
the character required to bring a sufficient corrective to 
bear, iil case of need, on this democratic situation in which 
the businessmen in charge necessarily manage the coun- 
try's industry at cross purposes with the community's 
that is the common man's material interest. It is an ex- 
traneous power, to whom the continued pecuniary gain 
of these nations' businessmen is a minor consideration, 
a negligible consideration in case it shall appear that the 
Imperial usufruct of the underlying nation's productive 
forces is in any degree impaired by the businessmen's 
management of it for their own net gain. It is difficult 
to see on what grounds of self-interest such an Imperial 
government could consent to tolerate the continued man- 
agement of these underlying nations' industries on busi- 
ness principles, that is to say on the principle of the 

Peace Without Honour 175 

maximum pecuniary gain to the businesslike managers; 
and recent experience seems to teach that no excessive, 
that is to say no inconvenient, degree of consideration 
for vested rights, and the like, would long embarrass the 
Imperial government in its administration of its usufruct. 

It should be a reasonable expectation that, without 
malice and with an unprejudiced view to its own usu- 
fruct of these underlying countries, the Imperial estab- 
lishment would take due care that no systematically, 
and in its view gratuitously, uneconomical methods 
should continue in the ordinary conduct of their industry. 
Among other considerations of weight in this connection 
is the fact that a contented, well-fed, and not wantonly 
over-worked populace is a valuable asset in such a case. 
Similarly, by contraries, as an asset in usufruct to such 
an alien power, a large, wealthy, spendthrift, body of 
gentlefolk, held in high esteem by the common people, 
would have but a slight value, conceivably even a negative 
value, in such a case. A wise administration would pre- 
sumably look to their abatement, rather than otherwise, 
at this point the material interest of the common man 
would seem to coincide with that of the Imperial establish- 
ment. Still, his preconceived notions of the wisdom and 
beneficence of his gentlefolk would presumably hinder 
his seeing the matter hi that reasonable light. 

Under the paramount surveillance of such an alien 
power, guided solely by its own interest in the usufruct 
of the country and its population, it is to be presumed that 
class privileges and discrimination would be greatly 
abated if not altogether discontinued. The point is in 
some doubt, partly because this alien establishment whose 
dominion is in question is itself grounded in class pre- 
rogatives and discrimination, and so, not improbably, 

176 On the Nature of Peace 

it would carry over into its supervision of the underlying 
nations something of a bias in favor of class privileges. 
And a similar order of things might also result by 
choice of a class-system as a convenient means of control 
and exploitation. The latter consideration is presumably 
the more cogent, since the Imperial establishment in ques- 
tion is already, by ancient habit, familiar with the method 
of control by class and privilege; and, indeed, unfamiliar 
with any other method. Such a government, which gov- 
erns without effectual advice or formal consent of the 
governed, will almost necessarily rest its control of the 
country on an interested class, of sufficient strength and 
bound by sufficiently grave interest to abet the Imperial 
establishment effectually in all its adventures and enter- 

But such a privileged order, that is to be counted in to 
share dynastic usufruct and liabilities, in good days and 
evil, will be of a feudalistic complexion rather than some- 
thing after the fashion of a modern business community 
doing business by investment and pecuniary finesse. It 
would still be a reasonable expectation that discrimina- 
tion between pecuniary classes should fall away under this 
projected alien tutelage; more particularly all such dis- 
crimination as is designed to benefit any given class or 
interest at the cost of the whole, as, e, g., protective 
tariffs, monopolistic concessions and immunities, engross- 
ing of- particular lines of material resources, and the like. 

The character of the economic policy to be pursued 
should not be difficult of apprehension, if only these un- 
derlying peoples are conceived as an estate in tail within 
the dynastic line of descent. The Imperial establishment 
which so is prospectively to take over the surveillance of 
these modern peoples under this projected enterprise 

Peace Without- Honour 177 

in dominion, may all the more readily be conceived as 
handling its new and larger resources somewhat unre- 
servedly as an estate to be administered with a shrewd 
eye to the main chance, since such has always been its 
relation to the peoples and territories whose usufruct it 
already enjoys. It is only that the circumstances of 
the case will admit a freer and more sagacious application 
of those principles of usufruct that lie at the root of the 
ancient Culture of the Fatherland. 

This excessively long, and yet incomplete, review of the 
presumptive material advantages to accrue to the common 
man under a regime of peace by unconditional surrender 
to an alien dynasty, brings the argument apparently to the 
conclusion that such an eventuality might be fortunate 
rather than the reverse ; or at least that it has its compen- 
sations, even if it is not something to be desired. Such 
should particularly appear to be the presumption in case 
one is at all inclined to make much of the cultural gains to 
be brought in under the new regime. And more particu- 
larity should a policy of nonresistant submission to the 
projected new order seem expedient in view of the ex- 
ceedingly high, not to say prohibitive, cost of resistance, 
or even of materially retarding its fulfillment. 



Considered simply on the face of the tangible material 
interests involved, the choice of the common man in 
these premises should seem very much of a foregone con- 
clusion, if he could persuade himself to a sane and per- 
spicuous consideration of these statistically apparent 
merits of the case alone. It is at least safely to be pre- 
sumed that he has nothing to lose, in a material way, and 
there is reason to look for some slight gain in creature 
comforts and in security of life and limb, consequent 
upon the elimination, or at least the partial disestablish- 
ment, of pecuniary necessity as the sole bond and criterion 
of use and wont in economic concerns. 

But man lives not by bread alone. In point of fact, 
and particularly as touches the springs of action among 
that common run that do not habitually formulate their 
aspirations and convictions in extended and grammatically 
defensible documentary form, and the drift of whose im- 
pulses therefore is not masked or deflected by the illusive 
consistencies of set speech, as touches the common run, 
particularly, it will hold true with quite an unacknowl- 
edged generality that the material means of life are, 
after all, means only; and that when the question of what 
things are worth while is brought to the final test, it is 
not these means, nor the life conditioned on these means, 
that are seen to serve as the decisive criterion ; but always 


Peace and Neutrality 179 

it is some ulterior, immaterial end, in the pursuit of 
which these material means find their ulterior ground of 
valuation. Neither the overt testimony nor the circum- 
stantial evidence to this effect is unequivocal; but seen in 
due perspective, and regard being had chiefly to the 
springs of concerted action as shown in any massive move- 
ment of this common run of mankind, there is, after all, 
little room to question that the things which commend 
themselves as indefeasibly worth while are the things of 
the human spirit. 

These ideals, aspirations, aims, ends of endeavour, are 
by no means of a uniform or homogeneous character 
throughout the modern communities, still less throughout 
the civilised world, or throughout the checkered range of 
classes and conditions of men; but, with such frequency 
and amplitude that it must be taken as* a major premise 
in any attempted insight into human behavior, it will hold 
true that they are of a spiritual, immaterial nature. 

The caution may, parenthetically, not be out of place, 
that this characterisation of the ulterior springs of action 
as essentially not of the nature of creature comforts, need 
be taken in no wider extension than that which so is 
specifically given it. It will be found to apply as touches 
the conduct of the common run; what modification of it 
might be required to make it at all confidently applicable 
to the case of one and another of those classes into 
whose scheme of life creature comforts enter with more 
pronounced effect may be more of a delicate point. But 
since it is the behavior, and the grounds of behavior, of 
the common run that are here in question, the case of 
their betters in this respect may conveniently be left on 
one side. 

180 On the Nature of Peace 

The question in hand touches the behavior of the com- 
mon man, taken in the aggregate, in face of the quandary 
into which circumstances have led him ; since the question 
of what these modern peoples will do is after all a ques- 
tion of what the common man in the aggregate will do, 
of his own motion or by persuasion. His betters may 
be in a position to guide, persuade, cajole, mislead, and 
victimise him ; for among the many singular conceits that 
beset the common man is the persuasion that his betters 
are in some way better than he, wiser, more beneficent. 
But the course that may so be chosen, with or without 
guidance or persuasion from the superior classes, as well 
as the persistence and energy with which this course is 
pursued, is conditioned on the frame of mind of the 
common run. 

Just what will be the nature and the concrete expression 
of these ideal aspirations that move the common run is 
a matter of habitual preconceptions ; and habits of thought 
vary from one people to another according to the diver- 
sity of experience to which they have been exposed. 
Among the Western nations the national prestige has 
come to seem worth while as an ulterior end, perhaps be- 
yond all else that is comprised in the secular scheme of 
things desirable to be had or to be achieved. And in the 
apprehension of such of them as have best preserved 
the habits of thought induced by a long experience in 
feudal subjection, the service of the sovereign or the 
dynasty still stands over as the substantial core of the 
cultural scheme, upon which sentiment and endeavour 
converge. In the past ages of the democratic peoples, as 
well as in the present day use and wont among subjects of 
the dynastic States e. g., Japan or Germany men are 
known to have resolutely risked, and lost, their life for 

Peace and Neutrality 181 

the sake of the sovereign's renown, or even to save the 
sovereign's life; whereas, of course, even the slightest 
and most nebulous reflection would make it manifest 
that in point of net material utility the sovereign's de- 
cease is an idle matter as compared with the loss of an 
able-bodied workman. The sovereign may always be 
replaced, with some prospect of public advantage, or 
failing that, it should be remarked that a regency or 
inter-regnum will commonly be a season of relatively 
economical administration. Again, religious enthusiasm, 
and the furtherance of religious propaganda, may come to 
serve the same general purpose as these secular ideals, and 
will perhaps serve it just as well. Certain "principles," of 
personal liberty and of opportunity for creative self- 
direction and an intellectually worthy life, perhaps may 
also become the idols of the people, for which they will 
then be willing to risk their material fortune ; and where 
this has happened, as among the democratic peoples of 
Christendom, it is not selfishly for their own personal op- 
portunity to live untroubled under the light of these high 
principles that these opinionated men are ready to con- 
tend, but rather impersonally for the human right which 
under these principles is the due of all mankind, and 
particularly of the incoming and of later generations. 

On these and the like intangible ends the common man 
is set with such inveterate predilection that he will, on 
provocation, stick at nothing to put the project through. 
For such like ends the common man will lay down his 
life; at least, so they say. There may always be some- 
thing of rhetorical affectation in it all; but, after all, there 
is sufficient evidence to hand of such substance and ten- 
acity in the common man's hold on these ideal aspirations, 
on these idols of his human spirit, as to warrant the as- 

182 On the Nature of Peace 

sertion that he is, rather commonly, prepared to go to 
greater lengths in the furtherance of these immaterial 
gains that are to inure to someone else than for any per- 
sonal end of his own, in the way of creature comforts 
or even of personal renown. 

For such ends the common man, in democratic Christen- 
dom is, on provocation, willing to die; or again, the 
patient and perhaps more far-seeing common man of 
pagan China is willing to live for these idols of an 
inveterate fancy, through endless contumely and hard 
usage. The conventional Chinese preconceptions, in the 
way of things that are worth while in their own right, 
appear to differ from those current in the Occident in 
such a way that the preconceived ideal is not to be 
realised except by way of continued life. The common 
man's accountability to the cause of humanity, in China, 
is of so intimately personal a character that he can meet 
it only by tenaciously holding his place in the sequence of 
generations ; whereas among the peoples of Christendom 
there has arisen out of their contentious past a preconcep- 
tion to the effect that this human duty to mankind is of 
the nature of a debt, which can be cancelled by bank- 
ruptcy proceedings, so that the man who unprofitably 
dies fighting for the cause has thereby constructively 
paid the reckoning in full. 

Evidently, if the common man of these modern nations 
that are prospectively to be brought under tutelage of the 
Imperial government could be brought to the frame of 
mind that is habitual with his Chinese counterpart, there 
should be a fair hope that pacific counsels would prevail 
and that Christendom would so come in for a regime of 
peace by submission under this Imperial tutelage. But 
there are always these preconceptions of self-will and in- 

Peace and Neutrality 183 

subordination to be counted with among these nations, 
and there is the ancient habit of a contentious national 
solidarity in defense of the nation's prestige, more urgent 
among these peoples than any sentiment of solidarity with 
mankind at large, or any ulterior gain in civilisation that 
might come of continued discipline in the virtues of 
patience and diligence under distasteful circumstances. 

The occidental conception of manhood is in some con- 
siderable measure drawn in negative terms. So much 
so that whenever a question of the manly virtues comes 
under controversy it presently appears that at least the 
indispensable minimum, and indeed the ordinary mar- 
ginal modicum, of what is requisite to a worthy manner 
of life is habitually formulated in terms of what not. 
This appearance is doubtless misleading if taken with- 
out the universally understood postulate on the basis of 
which negative demands are formulated. There is a 
good deal of what would be called historical accident in 
all this. The indispensable demands of this modern 
manhood take the form of refusal to obey extraneous 
authority on compulsion; of exemption from coercive 
direction and subservience ; of insubordination, in short. 
But it is always understood as a matter of course that 
this insubordination is a refusal to submit to irresponsible 
or autocratic rule. Stated from the positive side it would 
be freedom from restraint by or obedience to any author- 
ity not constituted by express advice and consent of the 
governed. And as near as it may be formulated, when 
reduced to the irreducible minimum of concrete proviso, 
this is the final substance of things which neither shame 
nor honor will permit the modern civilised man to yield. 
To no arrangement for the abrogation of this minimum 
of free initiative and self-direction will he consent to be 

184 On the Nature of Peace 

a party, whether it touches the conditions of life for his 
own people who are to come after, or as touches the 
fortunes of such aliens as are of a like mind on this 
head and are unable to make head against invasion of 
these human rights from outside. 

As has just been remarked, the negative form so 
often taken by these demands is something of an historical 
accident, due to the fact that these modern peoples come 
into their highly esteemed system of Natural Liberty 
out of an earlier system of positive checks on self-direc- 
tion and initative ; a system, in effect, very much after the 
fashion of that Imperial jurisdiction that still prevails 
in the dynastic States as, e. g., Germany or Japan 
whose projected dominion is now the immediate object of 
apprehension and repugnance. How naively the negative 
formulation gained acceptance, and at the same time 
how intrinsic to the new dispensation was the aspiration 
for free initiative, appears in the confident assertion of its 
most genial spokesman, that when these positive checks 
are taken away "The simple and obvious system of 
Natural Liberty establishes itself of its own accord." 

The common man, in these modern communities, shows 
a brittle temper when any overt move is made against 
this heritage of civil liberty. He may not be altogether 
well advised in respect of what liberties he will defend 
and what he will submit to ; but the fact is to be counted 
with in any projected peace, that there is always this 
refractor} 7 residue of terms not open to negotiation or 
compromise. Now it also happens, also by historical ac- 
cident, that these residual principles of civil liberty have 
come to blend and coalesce with a stubborn preconception 
of national integrity and national prestige. So that in the 
workday apprehension of the common man, not given to 

Peace and Neutrality 185 

analytic excursions, any infraction of the national in- 
tegrity or any abatement of the national prestige has 
come to figure as an insufferable infringement on his 
personal liberty and on those principles of humanity that 
makes up the categorical articles of the secular creed of 
Christendom. The fact may be patent on reflection that 
the common man's substantial interest in the national 
integrity is slight and elusive, and that in sober common 
sense the national prestige has something less than a 
neutral value to him; but this state of the substantially 
pertinent facts is not greatly of the essence of the case, 
since his preconceptions in these premises do not run to 
that effect, and since they are of too hard and fast a 
texture to suffer any serious abatement within such a 
space of time as can come in question here and now. 

The outlook for a speedy settlement of the world's 
peace on a plan of unconditional surrender to the pro- 
jected Imperial dominion seems unpromisingly dubious, 
in view of the stubborn temper shown by these modern 
peoples wherever their preconceived ideas of right and 
honest living appear to be in jeopardy; and the expedi- 
ency of entering into any negotiated compact of diplo- 
matic engagements and assurances designed to serve as 
groundwork to an eventual enterprise of that kind must 
therefore also be questionable in a high degree. It is 
even doubtful if any allowance of time can be counted on 
to bring these modern peoples to a more reasonable, more 
worldly-wise, frame of mind; so that they would come 
to see their interest in such an arrangement, or would 
divest themselves of their present stubborn and perhaps 
fantastic prejudice against an autocratic regime of the 
kind spoken for. At least for the present any such hope of 

186 On the Nature of Peace 

a peaceable settlement seems illusive. What may be prac- 
ticable in this way in the course of time is of course still 
more obscure ; but argument on the premises which the 
present affords does not point to a substantially different 
outcome in the calculable future. 

For the immediate future say, within the life-time of 
the oncoming generation the spiritual state of the peo- 
ples concerned in this international quandary is not likely 
to undergo so radical a change as to seriously invalidate 
an argument that proceeds on the present lie of the land 
in this respect. Preconceptions are a work of habit im- 
pinging on a given temperamental bent ; and where, as in 
these premises, the preconceptions have taken on an in- 
stitutionalised form, have become conventionalised and 
commonly accepted, and so have been woven into the 
texture of popular common sense, they must needs be a 
work of protracted and comprehensive habituation im- 
pinging on a popular temperamental bent of so general a 
prevalence that it may be called congenital to the com- 
munity at large. A heritable bent pervading the group 
within which inheritance runs, does not change, so long 
as the racial complexion of the group remains passably 
intact ; a conventionalised, commonly established habit of 
mind will change only slowly, commonly not without the 
passing of at least one generation, and only by grace of a 
sufficiently searching and comprehensive discipline of ex- 
perience. For good or ill, the current situation is to be 
counted on not to lose character over night or with a 
revolution of the seasons, so far as concerns these spiritual 
factors that make or mar the fortunes of nations. 

At the same time these spiritual assets, being of the 
nature of habit, are also bound to change character more 
or less radically, by insensible shifting of ground, but 

Peace and Neutrality 187 

incontinently, provided only that the conditions of life, 
and therefore the discipline of experience, undergo any 
substantial change. So the immediate interest shifts to 
the presumptive rate and character of those changes that 
are in prospect, due to the unremitting change of cir- 
cumstances under which these modern peoples live and to 
the discipline of which they are unavoidably exposed. For 
the present and for the immediate futrue the current 
state of things is a sufficiently stable basis of argument ; 
but assurance as to the sufficiency of the premises af- 
forded by the current state of things thins out in pro- 
portion as the perspective of the argument runs out into 
the succeeding years. The bearing of it all is twofold, of 
course. This progressive, cumulative habituation under 
changing circumstances affects the case both of those 
democratic peoples whose fortunes are in the hazard, and 
also of those dynastic States by whom the projected enter- 
prise in dominion is to be carried into effect. 

The case of the two formidable dynastic States whose 
names have been coupled together in what has already 
been said is perhaps the more immediately interesting in 
the present connection. As matters stand, and in the 
measure in which they continue so to stand, the case of 
these is in no degree equivocal. The two dynastic estab- 
lishments seek dominion, and indeed they seek nothing 
else, except incidentally to and in furtherance of the main 
quest. As has been remarked before, it lies in the nature 
of a dynastic State to seek dominion, that being the whole 
of its nature in so far as it runs true to form. But a 
dynastic State, like any other settled, institutionalised com- 
munity of men, rests on and draws its effectual driving 
force from the habit of mind of its underlying community, 

188 On the Nature of Peace 

the common man in the aggregate, his preconceptions and 
ideals as to what things are worth while. Without a 
suitable spiritual ground of this kind such a dynastic 
State passes out of the category of formidable Powers 
and into that of precarious despotism. 

In both of the two States here in question the dynastic 
establishment and its bodyguard of officials and gentle- 
folk may be counted on to persevere in the faith that now 
animates them, until an uneasy displacement of senti- 
ment among the underlying populace may in time induce 
them judiciously to shift their footing. Like the ruling 
classes elsewhere? they are of a conservative temper and 
may be counted on so to continue. They are also not 
greatly exposed to the discipline of experience that 
makes for adaptive change in habits of life, and there- 
fore in the correlated habits of thought. It is always the 
common man that is effectually reached by any exacting 
or wide-reaching change in the conditions of life. He is 
relatively unsheltered from any forces that make for 
adaptive change, as contrasted with the case of his betters ; 
and however sluggish and reluctant may be his response to 
such discipline as makes for a displacement of outworn 
preconceptions, yet it is always out of the mass of this 
common humanity that those movements of disaffection 
and protest arise, which lead, on occasion, to any material 
realignment of the institutional fabric or to any sub- 
stantial shift in the line of policy to be pursued under 
the guidance of their betters. 

The common mass of humanity, it may be said in 
parenthesis, is of course not a homogenious body. Un- 
common men, in point of native gifts of intelligence, 
sensibility, or personal force, will occur as frequently, in 
proportion to the aggregate numbers, among the common 

Peace and Neutrality 189 

mass as among their betters. Since in any one of these 
nations of Christendom, with their all-inclusive hybrid- 
isation, the range, frequency and amplitude of variations 
in hereditary endowment is the same throughout all 
classes. Class differentiation is a matter of habit and 
convention; and in distinction from his betters the com- 
mon man is common only in point of numbers and in point 
of the more general and more exacting conditions to which 
he is exposed. He is in a position to be more hardly rid- 
den by the discipline of experience, and is at the same time 
held more consistently to such a body of preconceptions, 
and to such changes only in this body of preconceptions, as 
fall in with the drift of things in a larger mass of human- 
ity. But all the while it is the discipline which impinges 
on the sensibilities of this common mass that shapes the 
spiritual attitude and temper of the community and so 
defines what may and what may not be undertaken by the 
constituted leaders. So that, in a way, these dynastic 
States are at the mercy of that popular sentiment whose 
creatures they are, and are subject to undesired changes 
of direction and efficiency in their endeavors, contingent 
on changes in the popular temper ; over which they have 
only a partial, and on the whole a superficial control. 

A relatively powerful control and energetic direction of 
the popular temper is and has been exercised by these 
dynastic establishments, with a view to its utilisation in 
the pursuit of the dynastic enterprise ; and much has visi- 
bly been accomplished in that way; chiefly, perhaps, by 
military discipline in subordination to personal authority, 
and also by an unsparing surveillance of popular educa- 
tion, with a view to fortify the preconceptions handed 
down from the passing order as well as to eliminate all 
subversive innovation. Yet in spite of all the well-con- 

190 On the Nature of Peace 

ceived and shrewdly managed endeavors of the German 
Imperial system in this direction, e. g., there has been 
evidence of an obscurely growing uneasiness, not to say 
disaffection, among the underlying mass. So much so 
that hasty observers, and perhaps biased, have reached 
the inference that one of the immediate contributary 
causes that led to the present war the need of a heroic 
remedy to correct this untoward drift of sentiment. 

For the German people the government of the present 
dynastic incumbent has done all that could (humanly 
speaking) be expected in the way of endeavoring to con- 
serve the passing order and to hold the popular imagina- 
tion to the received f eudalistic ideals of loyal service. And 
yet the peoples of the Empire are already caught in the 
net of that newer order which they are now endeavoring 
to break by force of arms. They are inextricably impli- 
cated in the cultural complex of Christendom ; and with- 
in this Western culture those peoples to whom it fell to 
lead the exodus out of the Egypt of feudalism have come 
quite naturally to set the pace in all the larger conform- 
ities of civilised life. Within the confines of Christen- 
dom today, for good or ill, whatever usage or customary 
rule of conduct falls visibly short of the precedent set 
by these cultural pioneers is felt to fall beneath the pre- 
scriptive commonplace level of civilisation. Failure to 
adopt and make use of those tried institutional expedients 
on which these peoples of the advance guard have set their 
mark of authentication is today presumptively a mistake 
and an advantage foregone ; and a people who are denied 
the benefit of these latterday ways and means of civic 
life are uneasy with a sense of grievance at the hands 
of their rulers. Besides which, the fashion in articles of 
institutional equipage so set by the authentic pioneers of. 

Peace and Neutrality 191 

culture has also come to be mandatory, as a punctilio of 
the governmental proprieties; so that no national estab- 
lishment which aspires to a decorous appearance in the 
eyes of the civilised world can longer afford to be seen 
without them. The forms at least must be observed. 
Hence the "representative" and pseudo-representative in- 
stitutions of these dynastic States. 

These dynastic States among the rest have partly fol- 
lowed the dictates of civilised fashion, partly yielded to 
the, more or less intelligent, solicitations of their sub- 
jects, or the spokesmen of their subjects, and have in- 
stalled institutional apparatus of this modern pattern 
more in point of form than of substance, perhaps. Yet 
in time the adoption of the forms is likely to have an 
effect, if changing circumstances favor their taking effect. 
Such has on the whole been the experience of those peo- 
ples who have gone before along this trail of political 
advance. As instance the growth of discretionary powers 
under the hands of parliamentary representatives in those 
cases where the movement has gone on longest and 
farthest; and these instances should not be considered 
idle, as intimations of what may presumptively be looked 
for under the Imperial establishments of Germany or 
Japan. It may be true that hitherto, along with the 
really considerable volume of imitative gestures of dis- 
cretionary deliberation delegated to these parliamentary 
bodies, they have as regards all graver matters brought 
to their notice only been charged with a (limited) power 
to talk. It may be true that, for the present, on critical 
or weighty measures the parliamentary discretion extends 
no farther than respectfully to say : ff Ja wohll" But then, 
Ja wohl is also something; and there is no telling where 
it may all lead to in the long course of years. One has 

192 On the Nature of Peace 

a vague apprehension that this "Ja wohl!" may some day 
come to be a customarily necessary form of authentication, 
so that withholding it (Behiif es Gott!) may even come 
to count as an effectual veto on measures so pointedly 
neglected. More particularly will the formalities of rep- 
resentation and self-government be likely to draw the 
substance of such like "free institutions" into the effect- 
ual conduct of public affairs if it turns out that the 
workday experiences of these people takes a turn more 
conductive to habits of insubordination than has been the 
case hitherto. 

Indications are, again, not wanting, that even in the 
Empire the discipline of workday experience is already 
diverging from that line that once trained the German 
subjects into the most loyal and unrepining subservience 
to dynastic ambitions. Of course, just now, under the 
shattering impact of warlike atrocities and patriotic clam- 
or, the workday spirit of insubordination and critical 
scrutiny is gone out of sight and out of hearing. 

Something of this inchoate insubordination has showed 
itself repeatedly during the present reign, sufficient to 
provoke many shrewd protective measures on the side of 
the dynastic establishment, both by way of political 
strategy and by arbitrary control. Disregarding many 
minor and inconsequential divisions of opinion and coun- 
sel among the German people during this eventful reign, 
the political situation has been moving on the play of 
three, incipiently divergent, strains of interest and senti- 
ment: (a) the dynasty (together with the Agrarians, of 
whom in a sense the dynasty is a part) ; (b) the business- 
men, or commercial interest (including investors) ; and 
(c) the industrial workmen. Doubtless it would be easier 
to overstate than to indicate with any nice precision what 

Peace and Neutrality 193 

has been the nature, and especially the degree, of this 
alienation of sentiment and divergence of conscious in- 
terest among these several elements. It is not that there 
has at any point been a perceptible faltering in respect of 
loyalty to the crown as such. But since the crown belongs, 
by origin, tradition, interest and spiritual identity, in the 
camp of the Agrarians, the situation has been such as 
would inevitably take on a character of disaffection to- 
ward the dynastic establishment, in the conceivable ab- 
sence of that strong surviving sentiment of dynastic 
loyalty that still animates all classes and conditions of 
men in the Fatherland. It would accordingly, again, be 
an overstatement to say that the crown has been standing 
precariously at the apex of a political triangle, the other 
two corners of which are occupied by these two divided 
and potentially recalcitrant elements of the body politic, 
held apart by class antipathy and divergent pecuniary in- 
terest, and held in check by divided counsels; but some- 
thing after that fashion is what would have resulted under 
similar conditions of strain in any community where the 
modern spirit of insubordination has taken effect in any 
large measure. 

Both of these elements of incipient disturbance in the 
dynastic economy, the modern commercial and working 
classes, are creatures of the new era ; and they are system- 
atically out of line with the received dynastic tradition of 
fealty, both in respect of their pecuniary interests and in 
respect of that discipline of experience to which their 
workday employment subjects them. They are substan- 
tially the same two classes or groupings that came for- 
ward in the modernisation of the British community, 
with a gradual segregation of interest and a consequent 
induced solidarity of class .sentiment and class animosi- 

194 On the Nature of Peace 

ties. But with the difference that in the British case the 
movement of changing circumstances was slow enough to 
allow a fair degree of habituation to the altered econ- 
omic conditions; whereas in the German case the move 
into modern economic conditions has been made so 
precipitately as to have carried the mediaeval frame of 
mind over virtually intact into this era of large business 
and machine industry. In the Fatherland the commercial 
and industrial classes have been called on to play their 
part without time to learn their lines. 

The case of the English-speaking peoples, who have 
gone over this course of experience in more consecutive 
fashion than any others, teaches that in the long run, if 
these modern economic conditions persist, one or the other 
or both of these creatures of the modern era must prevail, 
and must put the dynastic establishment out of commis- 
sion; although the sequel has not yet been seen in this 
British case, and there is no ground afforded for inference 
as to which of the two will have the fortune to survive 
and be invested with the hegemony. Meantime the op- 
portunity of the Imperial establishment to push its enter- 
prise in dominion lies in the interval of time so required 
for the discipline of experience under modern conditions 
to work out through the growth of modern habits of 
thought into such modern (L e. civilised) institutional 
forms and such settled principles of personal insubordina- 
tion as will put any effectual dynastic establishment out 
of commission. The same interval of time, that must so 
be allowed for the decay of the dynastic spirit among the 
German people under the discipline of life by the methods 
of modern trade and industry, marks the period during 
which no peace compact will be practicable, except with 
the elimination of the Imperial establishment as a pos- 

Peace and Neutrality 195 

sible warlike power. All this, of course, applies to the 
case of Japan as well, with the difference that while the 
Japanese people are farther in arrears, they are also a 
smaller, less formidable body, more exposed to outside 
forces, and their mediaevalism is of a more archaic and 
therefore more precarious type. 

What length of time will be required for this decay of 
the dynastic spirit among the people of the Empire is, of 
course, impossible to say. The factors of the case are not 
of a character to admit anything like calculation of the 
rate of movement ; but in the nature of the factors involv- 
ed it is also contained that something of a movement in 
this direction is unavoidable, under Providence. As a 
preliminary consideration, these peoples of the Empire 
and its allies, as well as their enemies in the great war, will 
necessarily come out of their warlike experience in a 
more patriotic and more vindictive frame of mind than 
that in which they entered on this adventure. Fighting 
makes for malevolence. The war is itself to be counted as 
a set-back. A very large proportion of those who have 
lived through it will necessarily carry a warlike bent 
through life. By that much, whatever it may count for, 
the decay of the dynastic spirit or the growth of toler- 
ance and equity in national sentiment, if one chooses to put 
it that way will be retarded from beforehand. So also 
the Imperial establishment, or whatever is left of it, may 
be counted on to do everything in its power to preserve the 
popular spirit of loyalty and national animosity, by all 
means at its disposal; since the Imperial establishment 
finally rests on the effectual body of national animosity. 
What hindrance will come in from this agency of re- 
tardation can at least vaguely be guessed at, in the light of 

196 On the Nature of Peace 

what has been accomplished in that way under the stren- 
uously reactionary rule of the present reign. 

Again, there is the chance, as there always is a chance 
of human folly, that the neighboring peoples will under- 
take, whether jointly or severally, to restrict or prohibit 
trade relations between the people of the Empire and their 
enemies in the present war; thereby fomenting inter- 
national animosity, as well as contributing directly to the 
economic readiness for war both on their own part and 
on that of the Empire. This is also, and in an eminent de- 
gree, an unknown factor in the case, on which not even 
a reasonable guess can be made beforehand. These are, 
all and several, reactionary agencies, factors of retarda- 
tion, making for continuation of the current international 
situation of animosity, distrust, chicane, trade rivalry, 
competitive armament, and eventual warlike enterprise. 

To offset these agencies of conservatism there is noth- 
ing much that can be counted on but that slow, random, 
and essentially insidious working of habituation that 
tends to the obsolescence of the received preconceptions ; 
partly by supplanting them with something new, but more 
effectually by their falling into disuse and decay. There 
is, it will have to be admitted, little of a positive char- 
acter that can be done toward the installation of a regime 
of peace and good-will. The endeavours of the pacifists 
should suffice to convince any dispassionate observer of 
the substantial futility of creative efforts looking to such 
an end. Much can doubtless be done in the way of pre- 
cautionary measures, mostly of a negative character, in 
the way especially of removing sources of infection and 
(possibly) of so sterilising the apparatus of national life 
that its working shall neither maintain animosities and in- 

Peace and Neutrality 197 

terests at variance with the conditions of peace nor con- 
tribute to their spread and growth. 

There is necessarily little hope or prospect that any 
national establishment will contribute materially or in any 
direct way to the obsolescence of warlike sentiments and 
ambitions ; since such establishments are designed for the 
making of war by keeping national jealousies intact, and 
their accepted place in affairs is that of preparation for 
eventual hostilities, defensive or offensive. Except for the 
contingency of eventual hostilities, no national establish- 
ment could be kept in countenance. They would all fall 
into the decay of desuetude, just as has happened to the 
dynastic establishments among those peoples who have 
(passably) lost the spirit of dynastic aggression. 

The modern industrial occupations, the modern tech- 
nology, and that modern empirical science that runs so 
close to the frontiers of technology, all work at cross pur- 
poses with the received preconceptions of the nationalist 
order ; and in a more pronounced degree they are at cross 
purposes with that dynastic order or preconceptions that 
converges on Imperial dominion. The like is true, with 
a difference, of the ways, means and routine of business 
enterprise as it is conducted in the commercialised com- 
munities of today. The working of these agencies runs 
to this effect not by way of deliberate and destructive 
antagonism, but almost wholly by force of systematic, 
though unintended and incidental, neglect of those values, 
standards, verities, and grounds of discrimination and 
conviction that make up the working realities of the 
national spirit and of dynastic ambition. The working 
concepts of this new, essentially mechanistic, order of 
human interests, do not necessarily clash with those of 
the old order, essentially the order of personages and 

198 On the Nature of Peace 

personalities ; the two are incommensurable, and they are 
incompatible only in the sense and degree implied in 
that state of the case. The profoundest and most mere- 
torious truths of dynastic politics can on no provocation 
and by no sleight of hand be brought within the logic of 
that system of knowledge and appraisal of values by 
which the mechanistic technology proceeds. Within the 
premises of this modern mechanistic industry and science 
all the best values and verities of the dynastic order 
are simply "incompetent, irrelevant and impertinent." 

There is accordingly no unavoidable clash and no nec- 
essary friction between the two schemes of knowledge or 
the two habits of mind that characterise the two con- 
trasted cultural eras. It is only that a given individual- 
call him the common man will not be occupied with both 
of these incommensurable systems of logic and apprecia- 
tion at the same time or bearing on the same point ; and 
further that in proportion as his waking hours and his 
mental energy are fully occupied within the lines of one 
of these systems of knowledge, design and employment, 
in much the same measure he will necessarily neglect the 
other, and in time he will lose proficiency and interest in 
its pursuits and its conclusions. The man who is so held 
by his daily employment and his life-long attention with- 
in the range of habits of thought that are valid in the 
mechanistic technology, will, on an average and in the 
long run, lose his grip on the spiritual virtues of national 
prestige and dynastic primacy ; "for they are foolishness 
unto him; neither can he know them, because they are 
spiritually discerned." 

Not that the adepts in this modern mechanistic system 
of knowledge and design may not also be very good pa- 
triots and devoted servants of the dynasty. The artless 

Peace and Neutrality 199 

and, on the whole, spontaneous riot of dynastic avidity 
displayed to the astonished eyes of their fellow crafts- 
men in the neutral countries by the most eminent scien- 
tists of the Fatherland during the early months of the 
war should be sufficient warning that the archaic pre- 
conceptions do not hurriedly fly out of the window when 
the habits of thought of the mechanistic order come in 
at the door. But with the passage of time, pervasively, 
by imperceptible displacement, by the decay of habitual 
disuse, as well as by habitual occupation with these other 
and unrelated ways and means of knowledge and belief, 
dynastic loyalty and the like conceptions in the realm of 
religion and magic pass out of the field of attention and 
fall insensibly into the category of the lost arts. Particu- 
larly will this be true of the common man, who lives, 
somewhat characteristically, in the mass and in the pres- 
ent, and whose waking hours are somewhat fully occu- 
pied with what he has to do. 

With the commercial interests the Imperial establish- 
ment can probably make such terms as to induce their 
support of the dynastic enterprise, since they can appar- 
ently always be made to believe that an extension of the 
Imperial dominion will bring correspondingly increased 
opportunities of trade. It is doubtless a mistake, but 
it is commonly believed by the interested parties, which 
is just as good for the purpose as if it were true. And 
it should be added that in this, as in other instances of 
the quest of larger markets, the costs are to be paid by 
someone else than the presumed commercial beneficiaries ; 
which brings the matter under the dearest principle known 
to businessmen: that of getting something for nothing. 
It will not be equally easy to keep the affections of the 
common man loyal to the dynastic enterprise when he 

200 On the Nature of Peace 

begins to lose his grip on the archaic faith in dynastic 
dominion and comes to realise that he has also indi- 
vidually and in the mass no material interest even in 
the defense of the Fatherland, much less in the further 
extension of Imperial rule. 

But the time when this process of disillusionment and 
decay of ideals shall have gone far enough among the 
common run to afford no secure footing in popular sen- 
timent for the contemplated Imperial enterprise, this 
time is doubtless far in the future, as compared with the 
interval of preparation required for a new onset. Habitu- 
ation takes time, particularly such habituation as can be 
counted on to derange the habitual bent of a great pop- 
ulation in respect of their dearest preconceptions. It will 
take a very appreciable space of time even in the case of 
a populace so accessible to new habits of thought as the 
German people are by virtue of their slight percentage of 
illiteracy, the very large proportion engaged in those 
modern industries that constantly require some intelligent 
insight into mechanistic facts, the density of population 
and the adequate means of communication, and the ex- 
tent to which the whole population is caught in the web 
of mechanically standardised processes that condition their 
daily life at every turn. As regards their technological 
situation, and their exposure to the discipline of industrial 
life, no other population of nearly the same volume is 
placed in a position so conducive to a rapid acquirement 
of the spirit of the modern era. But, also, no other 
people comparable with the population of the Fatherland 
has so large and well-knit a body of archaic preconcep- 
tions to unlearn. Their nearest analogue, of course, is 
the Japanese nation. 

Peace and Neutrality 201 

In all this there is, of course, no inclination to cast a 
slur on the German people. In point of racial charac- 
teristics there is no difference between them and their 
neighbours. And there is no reason to question their 
good intentions. Indeed, it may safely be asserted that no 
people is more consciously well-meaning than the children 
of the Fatherland. It is only that, with their archaic 
preconceptions of what is right and meritorious, their 
best intentions spell malevolence when projected into the 
civilised world as it stands today. And by no fault of 
theirs. Nor is it meant to be intimated that their rate 
of approach to the accepted Occidental standard of insti- 
tutional maturity will be unduly slow or unduly reluctant, 
so soon as the pertinent facts of modern life begin effec- 
tively to shape their habits of thought. It is only that, 
human nature and human second nature being what 
it always has been, the rate of approach of the German 
people to a passably neutral complexion in matters of in- 
ternational animosity and aggression must necessarily be 
slow enough to allow ample time for the renewed prep- 
aration of a more unsparing and redoubtable endeavour 
on the part of the Imperial establishment. 

What makes this German Imperial establishment re- 
doubtable, beyond comparison, is the very simple but also 
very grave combination of circumstances whereby the 
German people have acquired the use of the modern 
industrial arts in the highest state of efficiency, at the 
same time that they have retained unabated the fanatical 
loyalty of feudal barbarism. 1 So long, and in. so far, 
as this conjunction of forces holds there is no outlook 

x For an extended discussion of this point, see Imperial Ger- 
many and the Industrial Revolution, especially ch. v. and vi. 

202 On the Nature of Peace 

for peace except on the elimination of Germany as a 
power capable of disturbing the peace. 

It may seem invidious to speak so recurrently of the 
German Imperial establishment as the sole potential dis- 
turber of the peace in Europe. The reason for so singling 
out the Empire for this invidious distinction of merit 
or demerit, as one may incline to take it is that the facts 
run that way. There is, of course, other human mate- 
rial, and no small volume of it in the aggregiate, that is 
of much the same character, and serviceable for the same 
purposes as the resources and man-power of the Empire. 
But this other material can come effectually into bearing 
as a means of disturbance only in so far as it clusters 
about the Imperial dynasty and marches under his ban- 
ners. In so speaking of the Imperial establishment as the 
sole enemy of a European peace, therefore, these out- 
lying others are taken for granted, very much as one 
takes the nimbus for granted in speaking of one of the 
greater saints of God. 

So the argument returns to the alternative: Peace by 
unconditional surrender and submission, or peace by 
elimination of Imperial Germany (and Japan). There 
is no middle course apparent. The old-fashioned that 
is to say nineteenth-century plan of competitive defen- 
sive armament and a balance of powers has been tried, 
and it has not proved to be a success, even so early in 
the twentieth century. This plan offers a substitute (Er- 
satz) for peace ; but even as such it has become imprac- 
ticable. The modern, or rather the current late-modern, 
state of the industrial arts does not tolerate it. Techno- 
logical knowledge has thrown the advantage in military 
affairs definitively to the offensive, particularly to the 

Peace and Neutrality 203 

offensive that is prepared beforehand with the suitable 
appliances and with men ready matured in that rigorous 
and protracted training by which alone they can become 
competent to make warlike use of these suitable appli- 
ances provided by the modern technology. At the same 
time, and by grace of the same advance in technology, 
any well-designed offensive can effectually reach any 
given community, in spite of distance or of other natural 
obstacles. The era of defensive armaments and diplo- 
matic equilibration, as a substitute for peace, has been 
definitively closed by the modern state of the industrial 

Of the two alternatives spoken of above, the former 
peace by submission under an alien dynasty is pre- 
sumably not a practicable solution, as has appeared in the 
course of the foregoing argument. 

The modern nations are not spiritually ripe for it. 
Whether they have reached even that stage of national 
sobriety, or neutrality, that -would enable them to live 
at peace among themselves after elimination of the Im- 
perial Powers is still open to an uneasy doubt. It would 
be by a precarious margin that they can be counted on 
so to keep the peace in the absence of provocation from 
without the pale. Their predilection for peace goes to 
no greater lengths than is implied in the formula : Peace 
with Honor; which assuredly does not cover a peace 
of non-resistance, and which, in effect leaves the distinc- 
tion between an offensive and a defensive war somewhat 
at loose ends. The national prestige is still a live asset 
in the mind of these peoples ; and the limit of tolerance 
in respect of this patriotic animosity appears to be drawn 
appreciably closer than the formula cited above would 
necessarily presume. They will fight on provocation, 

204 On the Nature of Peace 

and the degree of provocation required to upset the se- 
renity of these sportsmanlike modern peoples is a point 
on which the shrewdest guesses may diverge. Still, opin- 
ion runs more and more consistently to the effect that 
if these modern say the French and the English-speaking 
peoples were left to their own devices the peace might 
fairly be counted on to be kept between them indefinitely, 
barring unforeseen contingencies. 

Experience teaches that warlike enterprises on a mod- 
erate scale and as a side interest is by no means incom- 
patible with such a degree of neutral animus as these peo- 
ples have yet acquired, e. g., the Spanish-American war, 
which was made in America, or the Boer war, which 
was made in England. But these wars, in spite of the 
dimensions which they presently took on, were after all 
of the nature of episodes, the one chiefly an extension 
of sportsmanship, which engaged the best attention of 
only the more sportsmanlike elements, the other chiefly 
engineered by certain business interests with a callous 
view *to getting something for nothing. Both episodes 
carne to be^ serious enough, both in their immediate in- 
cidence and in their consequences; but neither com- 
manded the deliberate and cordial support of the com- 
munity at large. There is a meretricious air over both ; 
and there is apparent a popular inclination to condone 
rather than to take pride in these faits accompHs. The 
one excursion was a product of sportsmanlike bravado, 
fed on boyish exuberance, fomented for mercenary ob- 
jects by certain business interests and place-hunting pol- 
iticians, and incited by meretricious newspapers with a 
view to increase their circulation. The other was set 
afoot by interested businessmen, backed by politicians, 
seconded by newspapers, and borne by the community 

Peace and Neutrality 205 

at large, in great part under misapprehension and stung 
by wounded pride. 

Opinions will diverge widely as to the chances of peace 
in a community of nations among whom episodes of this 
character, and of such dimensions, have been somewhat 
more than tolerated in the immediate past. But the con- 
sensus of opinion in these same countries appears to be 
setting with fair consistency to the persuasion that the 
popular spirit shown in these and in analogous conjunc- 
tures in the recent past gives warrant that peace is delib- 
erately desired and is likely to be maintained, barring 
unforeseen contingencies. 

In the large, the measures conducive to the perpetuation 
of peace, and necessary to be taken, are simple and ob- 
vious; and they are largely of a negative character, ex- 
ploits of omission and neglect. Under modern conditions, 
and barring aggression from without, the peace is kept 
by avoiding the breaking of it. It does not break of itself, 
in the absence of such national establishments as are 
organised with the sole ulterior view of warlike enterprise. 
A policy of peace is obviously a policy of avoidance, 
avoidance of offense and of occasion for annoyance. 

What is required to insure the maintenance of peace 
among pacific nations is the neutralisation of all those 
human relations out of which international grievances are 
wont to arise. And what is necessary to assure a reason- 
able expectation of continued peace is the neutralisation 
of so much of these relations as the patriotic self-con- 
ceit and credulity of these peoples will permit. These 
two formulations are by no means identical ; indeed, the 
disparity between what could advantageously be dispensed 
with in the way of national rights and pretensions, and 

206 On the Nature of Peace 

what the common run of modern patriots could be in- 
duced to relinquish, is probably much more than any san- 
guine person would like to believe. It should be plain on 
slight reflection that the greater part, indeed substan- 
tially the whole, of those material interests and demands 
that now engage the policy of the nations, and that serve 
on occasion to set them at variance, might be neutralised 
or relinquished out of hand, without detriment to any 
one of the peoples concerned. 

The greater part of these material interests over which 
the various national establishments keep watch and hold 
pretensions are, in point of historical derivation, a legacy 
from the princely politics of what is called the "Mer- 
cantilist" period ; and they are uniformly of the nature of 
gratuitous interference or discrimination between the citi- 
zens of the given nation and outsiders. Except (doubt- 
fully) in the English case, where mercantilist policies are 
commonly believed to have been adopted directly for the 
benefit of the commercial interest, measures of this na- 
ture are uniformly traceable to the endeavours of the 
crown and its officers to strengthen the finances of the 
prince and give him an advantage in warlike enterprise. 
They are kept up essentially for the same eventual end 
of preparation for war. So, e. g., protective tariffs, and 
the like discrimination in shipping, are still advocated as a 
means of making the nation self-supporting, self-con- 
tained, self-sufficient; with a view to readiness in the 
event of hostilities. 

A nation is in no degree better off in time of peace for 
being self-sufficient. In point of patent fact no nation 
,can be industrially self-sufficient except at the cost of 
foregoing some of the economic advantages of that spec- 
ialisation of industry which the modern state of the in- 

Peace and Neutrality 207 

dustrial arts enforces. In time of peace there is no benefit 
comes to the community at large from such restraint of 
trade with the outside world, or to any class or section 
of the community except those commercial concerns that 
are favored by the discrimination; and these invariably 
gain their special advantage at the cost of their compa- 
triots. Discrimination in trade export, import or ship- 
ping has no more beneficial effect when carried out 
publicly by the national authorities than when effected 
surreptitiously and illegally by a private conspiracy in 
restraint of trade within a group of interested business 

Hitherto the common man has found it difficult to divest 
himself of an habitual delusion on this head, handed down 
out of the past and inculcated by interested politicians, to 
the effect that in some mysterious way he stands to gain 
by limiting his own opportunities. But the neutralisation 
of international trade, or the abrogation of all discrimina- 
tion in trade, is the beginning of wisdom as touches the 
perpetuation of peace. The first effect of such a neutral 
policy would be wider and more intricately interlocking 
trade relations, coupled with a further specialisation and 
mutual dependence of industry between the several coun- 
tries concerned; which would mean, in terms of inter- 
national comity, a lessened readiness for warlike opera- 
tions all around. 

It used to be an argument of the free-traders that the 
growth of international commercial relations under a 
free-trade policy would greatly conduce to a spirit of 
mutual understanding and forbearance between the na- 
tions. There may or may not be something appreciable 
in the contention; it has been doubted, and there is no 
considerable evidence to be had in support of it. But 

208 On the Nature of Peace 

what is more to the point is the tangible fact that such 
specialisation of industry and consequent industrial inter- 
dependence would leave all parties to this relation less 
capable, materially and spiritually, to break off amicable 
relations. So again, in time of peace and except with 
a view to eventual hostilities, it would involve no loss, 
and presumably little pecuniary gain, to any country, 
locality, town or class, if all merchant shipping were 
registered indiscriminately under neutral colors and sailed 
under the neutral no-man's flag, responsible indiscrim- 
inately to the courts where they touched or where their 
business was transacted. 

Neither producers, shippers, merchants or consumers 
have any slightest interest in the national allegiance of 
the carriers of their freight, except such as may artificially 
be induced by discriminatory shipping regulations. In 
all but the name in time of peace the world's merchant 
shipping already comes near being so neutralised, and the 
slight further simplification required to leave it on a 
neutral peace footing would be little else than a neglect of 
such vexatious discrimination as is still in force. If no 
nation could claim the allegiance, and therefore the usu- 
fruct, of any given item of merchant shipping in case 
of eventual hostilities, on account of the domicile of the 
owners or the port of registry, that would create a further 
handicap on eventual warlike enterprise and add so much 
to the margin of tolerance. At the same time, in the event 
of hostilities, shipping sailing under the neutral no-man's 
flag and subject to no national allegiance would enjoy such 
immunities as still inure to neutral shipping. It is true, 
neutrality has not carried many immunities lately. 

Cumulatively effective usage and the exigencies of a 
large, varied, shifting and extensive maritime trade have 

Peace and Neutrality 209 

in the course of time brought merchant shipping to some- 
thing approaching a neutral footing. For most, one might 
venture to say for virtually all, routine purposes of busi- 
ness and legal liability the merchant shipping comes under 
the jurisdiction of the local courts, without reservation. 
It is true, there still are formalities ana reservations which 
enable questions arising out of incidents in the shipping 
trade to become subject of international conference and 
adjustment, but they are after all not such as would war- 
rant the erection of national apparatus to take care of 
them in case they were not already covered by usage to 
that effect. The visible drift of usage toward neutralisa- 
tion in merchant shipping, in maritime trade, and in inter- 
national commercial transactions, together with the simi- 
larly visible feasibility of a closer approach to unreserved 
neutralisation of this whole range of traffic, suggests that 
much the same line of considerations should apply as 
regards the personal and pecuniary rights of citizens trav- 
eling or residing abroad. The extreme, or, as seen 
from the present point of view, the ultimate term in the 
relinquishment of national pretensions along this line 
would of course be the neutralisation of citizenship. 

This is not so sweeping a move as a patriotically-minded 
person might imagine on the first alarm, so far as touches 
the practical status of the ordinary citizen in his ordinary 
relations, and particularly among the English-speaking 
peoples. As an illustrative instance, citizenship has sat 
somewhat lightly on the denizens of the American re- 
public, and with no evident damage to the community at 
large or to the inhabitants in detail. Naturalisation has 
been easy, and has been sought with no more eagerness, 
on the whole, than the notably low terms of its acquire- 
ment would indicate. Without loss or discomfort many 

210 On the Nature of Peace 

law-abiding aliens have settled in this country and spent 
the greater part of a life-time under its laws without be- 
coming citizens, and no one the worse or the wiser for 
it. Not infrequently the decisive inducement to natu- 
ralisation on the part of immigrant aliens has been, and 
is, the desirability of divesting themselves of their rights 
of citizenship in the country of their origin. Not that 
the privilege and dignity of citizenship, in this or in any 
other country, is to be held of little account. It is rather 
that under modern civilised conditions, and among a peo- 
ple governed by sentiments of humanity and equity, the 
stranger within our gates suffers no obloquy and no de- 
spiteful usage for being a stranger. It may be admitted 
that of late, with the fomentation of a more accentuated 
nationalism by politicians seeking a raison tfetre, addi- 
tional difficulties have been created in the way of natu- 
ralisation and the like incidents. Still, when all is told 
of the average American citizen, qua citizen, there is not 
much to tell. The like is true throughout the English- 
speaking peoples, with inconsequential allowance for local 
color. A definitive neutralisation of citizenship within 
the range of these English-speaking countries would 
scarcely ripple the surface of things as they are in time 
of peace. 

All of which has not touched the sore and sacred spot 
in the received scheme of citizenship and its rights and 
liabilities. It is in the event of hostilities that the lia- 
bilities of the citizen at home come into the foreground, 
and it is as a source of patriotic grievance looking to 
warlike retaliation that the rights of the citizen abroad 
chiefly come into the case. 

If, as was once, almost inaudibly, hinted by a well- 
regarded statesman, the national establishment should 

Peace and Neutrality 211 

refuse to jeopardise the public peace for the safeguarding 
of the person and property of citizens who go out in 
paries infidelium on their own private concerns, and 
should so leave them under the uncurbed jurisdiction of 
the authorities in those countries into which they have 
intruded, the result might in many cases be hardship to 
such individuals. This would, of course, be true almost 
exclusively of such instances only as occur in such local- 
ities as are, temporarily or permanently, outside the pale 
of modern law and order. And, it may be in place to 
remark, instances of such hardship, with the accompany- 
ing hazard of national complications, would, no doubt, 
greatly diminish in frequency consequent upon the pro- 
mulgation of such a disclaimer of national responsibility 
for the continued well-being of citizens who so expatriate 
themselves in the pursuit of their own advantage or 
amusement. Meantime, let it not seem inconsiderate to 
recall that to the community at large the deplorable case 
of such expatriates under hardship involves no loss or 
gain in the material respect; and that, except for the 
fortuitous circumstance of his being a compatriot, the 
given individual's personal or pecuniary fortune in for- 
eign parts has no special claim on his compatriots' sym- 
pathy or assistance ; from which it follows also that with 
the definitive neutralisation of citizenship as touches ex- 
patriates, the sympathy which is now somewhat unin- 
telligently confined to such cases, on what may without 
offense be called extraneous grounds, would somewhat 
more impartially and humanely extend to fellow-men In 
distress, regardless of pedigree or naturalisation. 

What is mainly to the point here, however, is the fact 
that if citizenship were so neutralised within the range 
of neutral countries here contemplated, one further source 

212 On the Nature of Peace 

of provocation to international jealousy and distrust 
would drop out of the situation. And it is not easy to 
detect any element of material loss involved in such a 
move. In the material respect no individual would be any 
the worse off, with the doubtful and dubious exception of 
the expatriate fortune-hunter, who aims to fish safely in 
troubled waters at his compatriots' expense. But the case 
stands otherwise as regards the balance of immaterial 
assets. The scaffolding of much highly-prized sentiment 
would collapse, and the world of poetry and pageantry 
particularly that of the tawdrier and more vendible po- 
etry and pageantry would be poorer by so much. The 
Man Without a Country would lose his pathetic appeal, 
or would at any rate lose much of it. It may be, of 
course, that in the sequel there would result no net loss 
even in respect of these immaterial assets of sentimental 
animation and patriotic self-complacency, but it is after 
all fairly certain that something would be lost, and it is 
by no means clear what if anything would come in to 
fill its place. 

An historical parallel may help to illustrate the point. 
In the movement out of what may be called the royal age 
of dynasties and chivalric service, those peoples who have 
moved out of that age and out of its spiritual atmosphere 
have lost much of the conscious magnanimity and con- 
viction of merit that once characterised that order of 
things, as it still continues to characterise the prevalent 
habit of mind in the countries that still continue under 
the archaic order of dynastic mastery and service. But 
it is also to be noted that these peoples who so have moved 
out of the archaic order appear to be well content with 
this change of spiritual atmosphere, and they are even 
fairly well persuaded, in the common run, that the move 

Peace and Neutrality 213 

has brought them some net gain in the way of human dig- 
nity and neighbourly tolerance, such as to offset any loss 
incurred on the heroic and invidious side of life. Such 
is the tempering force of habit. Whereas, e. g., on the 
other hand, the peoples of these surviving dynastic States, 
to which it is necessary continually to recur, who have 
not yet moved out of that realm of heroics, find them- 
selves unable to see anything in such a prospective shift 
but" net loss and headlong decay of the spirit; that modi- 
cum of forbearance and equity that is requisite to the con- 
duct of life in a community of ungraded masterless men 
is seen by these stouter stomachs as a loosening of the 
moral fiber and a loss of nerve. 

What is here tentatively projected under the phrase, 
"neutralisation of citizenship" is only something a little 
more and farther along the same general line of move- 
ment which these more modern peoples have been fol- 
lowing in all that sequence of institutional changes that 
has given them their present distinctive character of com- 
monwealths, as contrasted with the dynastic States of 
the mediaeval order. What may be in prospect if such 
a further move away from the mediaeval landmarks is to 
take effect may best be seen in the light of the later 
moves in the same direction hitherto, more particularly as 
regards the moral and aesthetic merits at large of such an 
institutional mutation. As touches this last previous shift- 
ing of ground along this line, just spoken of, the case 
stands in this singular but significant posture, in respect of 
the spiritual values and valuations involved : These peo- 
ples who have, even in a doubtful measure, made this 
transition from the archaic institutional scheme, of fealty 
and dynastic exploit and coercion, to the newer scheme of 

214 On the Nature of Peace 

the ungraded commonwealth, are convinced, to the point 
of martyrdom, that anything like a return to the old 
order is morally impossible as well as insufferably shame- 
ful and irksome; whereas those people, of the retarded 
division of the race, who have had no experience of this 
new order, are equally convinced that it is all quite incom- 
patible with a worthy life. 

Evidently, there should be no disputing about tastes. 
Evidently, too, these retarded others will not move on into 
the later institutional phase, of the ungraded common- 
wealth, by preconceived choice; but only, if at all, by 
such schooling of experience as will bring them insensibly 
to that frame of mind out of which the ideal of the un- 
graded commonwealth emerges by easy generalisation 
of workday practice. Meantime, having not yet expe- 
rienced that phase of sentiment and opinion on civic rights 
and immunities that is now occupied by their institution- 
ally maturer neighbours, the subjects of the Imperial 
Fatherland, e. g., in spite of the most laudable intentions 
and the best endeavour, are, by failure of this experience, 
unable to comprehend either the ground of opposition 
to their well-meaning projects of dominion or the futil- 
ity of trying to convert these their elder brothers to their 
own prescriptive acceptation of what is worth while. In 
time, and with experience, this retarded division of Chris- 
tendom may come to the same perspective on matters of 
national usage and ideals as has been enforced on the 
more modern peoples by farther habitation. So, also, 
in time and with experience, if the drift of circumstance 
shall turn out to set that way, the further move away from 
mediaeval discriminations and constraint and into the 
unspectacular scheme of neutralisation may come to seem 
as right, good and beautiful as the democratic common- 

Peace and Neutrality 215 

wealth now seems to the English-speaking peoples, or as 
the Hohenzollern Imperial State now seems to the sub- 
jects of the Fatherland. There is, in effect, no disputing 
about tastes. 

There is little that is novel, and nothing that is to be 
rated as constructive innovation, in this sketch of what 
might not inaptly be called peace by neglect. The legal 
mind, which commonly takes the initiative in counsels on 
what to do, should scarcely be expected to look in that 
direction for a way out, or to see its way out in that 
direction in any case ; so that it need occasion no surprise 
if the many current projects of pacification turn on in- 
genious and elaborate provisions of apparatus and pro- 
cedure, rather than on that simpler line of expedients 
which the drift of circumstance, being not possessed of a 
legal mind, has employed in the sequence of institutional 
change hitherto. The legal mind that dominates in the 
current deliberations on peace is at home in exhaustive 
specifications and meticulous demarkations, and it is there- 
fore prone to seek a remedy for the burden of supernu- 
merary devices by recourse to further excesses of regu- 

This trait of the legal mind is not a bad fault at the 
worst, and the quality in which this defect inheres is of 
the greatest moment in any project of constructive engi- 
neering on the legal and political plane. But it is less to 
the purpose, indeed it is at cross purposes, in such a 
conjuncture as the present; when the nations are held 
up in their quest of peace chiefly by an accumulation of 
institutional apparatus that has out-stayed its usefulness. 
It is the fortune even of good institutions to become im- 
becile with the change of conditioning circumstances, and 
it then becomes a question of their disestablishment, not 

216 On the Nature of Peace 

of their rehabilitation. If there is anywhere a safe nega- 
tive conclusion, it is that an institution grown mischievous 
by obsolescence need not be replaced by a substitute. 

Instances of such mischievous institutional arrange- 
ments, obsolete or in process of obsolescence, would be, 
e. g., the French monarchy of the ancient regime, the 
Spanish Inquisition, the British corn laws and the "rot- 
ten boroughs," the Barbary pirates, the Turkish rule in 
Armenia, the British crown, the German Imperial Dy- 
nasty, the European balance of powers, the Monroe Doc- 
trine. In some sense, at least in the sense and degree im- 
plied in their selective survival, these various articles of 
institutional furniture, and many like them, have once 
presumably been suitable to some end, in the days of their 
origin and vigorous growth; and they have at least in 
some passable fashion met some felt want; but if they 
ever had a place and use in the human economy they have 
in time grown imbecile and mischievous by force of 
changing circumstances, and the question is not how to 
replace them with something else to the same purpose 
after their purpose is outworn. A man who loses a wart 
off the end of his nose does not apply to the Ersatz bureau 
for a convenient substitute. 

Now, a large proportion, perhaps even substantially the 
whole, of the existing apparatus of international rights, 
pretensions, discriminations, covenants and provisos, vis- 
ibly fall in that class, in so far as concerns their material 
serviceability to the nation at large, and particularly as 
regards any other than a warlike purpose, offensive or 
defensive. Of course, the national dignity and diplomatic 
punctilio, and the like adjuncts and instrumentalities of 
the national honor, all have their prestige value; and 
they are not likely to be given up out of hand. In point 

Peace and Neutrality 217 

of fact, however solicitous for a lasting peace these patri- 
otically-minded modern peoples may be, it is doubtful if 
they could be persuaded to give up any appreciable share 
of these appurtenances of national jealousy even when 
their retention implies an imminent breach of the peace. 
Yet it is plain that the peace will be secure in direct pro- 
portion to the measure in which national discrimination 
and prestige are allowed to pass into nothingness and be 

By so much as it might amount to, such neutralisation 
of outstanding interests between these pacific nations 
should bring on a degree of coalescence of these nation- 
alities. In effect, they are now held apart in many re- 
spects by measures of precaution against their coming to 
a common plan of use and wont. The degree of coa- 
lescence would scarcely be extreme ; more particularly it 
could not well become onerous, since it would rest on con- 
venience, inclination and the neglect of artificial discrep- 
ancies. The more intimate institutions of modern life, 
that govern human conduct locally and in detail, need not 
be affected, or not greatly affected, for better or worse. 
Yet something appreciable in that way might also fairly 
be looked for in time. 

The nature, reach and prescriptive force of this pro- 
spective coalescence through neutralisation may perhaps 
best be appreciated^ the light of what has already come 
to pass, without design or mandatory guidance, in those 
lines of human interest where the national frontiers in- 
terpose no bar, or at least no decisive bar, whether by 
force of unconcern or through impotence. Fashions of 
dress, equipage and decorous usage, e. g., run with some 
uniformity throughout these modern nations, and indeed 

218 On the Nature of Peace 

with some degree of prescriptive force. There is, of 
"course, nothing mandatory, in the simpler sense, about all 
this ; nor is the degree of conformity extreme or uniform 
throughout. But it is a ready-made generalisation that 
only those communities are incorporated in this cosmo- 
politan coalescence of usage that are moved by their 
own incitement, and only so far as they have an effectually 
felt need of conformity in these premises. It is true, a 
dispassionate outsider, if such there be, would perhaps 
be struck by the degree of such painstaking conformity 
to canons of conduct which it frequently must cost serious 
effort even to ascertain in such detail as the case calls 
for. Doubtless, or at least presumably, conformity under 
the jurisdiction of the fashions, and in related provinces 
of decorum, is obligatory in a degree that need not be 
looked for throughout the scheme of use and wont at 
large, even under the advisedly established non-interfer- 
ence of the authorities. Still, on a point on which the evi- 
dence hitherto is extremely scant it is the part of discre- 
tion to hold no settled opinion. 

A more promising line of suggestion is probably that 
afforded by the current degree of contact and consistency 
among the modern nations in respect of science and schol- 
arship, as also in the aesthetic or the industrial arts. Local 
color and local pride, with one thing and another in the 
way of special incitement or inhibition, may come in to 
vary the run of things, or to blur or hinder a common 
understanding and mutual furtherance and copartnery in 
these matters of taste and intellect. Yet it is scarcely 
misleading to speak of the peoples of Christendom as one 
community in these respects. The sciences and the arts 
are held as a joint stock among these peoples, in their 
elements, and measurably also in their working-out. It is 

Peace and Neutrality 219 

true, these interests and achievements of the race are 
not cultivated with the same assiduity or with identical 
effect throughout ; but it is equally true that no effectual 
bar could profitably be interposed, or would be tolerated 
in the long run in this field, where men have had occa- 
sion to learn that unlimited collusion is more to the pur- 
pose than a clannish discrimination. 

It is, no doubt, beyond reasonable hope that these dem- 
ocratic peoples could be brought forthwith to concerted 
action on the lines of such a plan of peace by neutralisa- 
tion of all outstanding national pretensions. Both the 
French and the English-speaking peoples are too eagerly 
set on national aims and national prestige, to allow such 
a plan to come to a hearing, even if something of the 
kind should be spoken for by their most trusted leaders. 
By settled habit they are thinking in terms of nationality, 
and just now they are all under the handicap of an in- 
flamed national pride. Advocacy of such a plan, of 
course, does not enter seriously into the purpose of this 
inquiry; which is concerned with the conditions under 
which peace is sought today, with the further conditions 
requisite to its perpetuation, and with the probable ef- 
fects of such a peace on the fortunes of these peoples in 
case peace is established and effectually maintained. 

It is a reasonable question, and one to which a provi- 
sional answer may be found, whether the drift of circum- 
stances in the present and for the immediate future may 
be counted on to set in the direction of a progressive neu- 
tralisation of the character spoken of above, and there- 
fore possibly toward a perpetuation of that peace that is 
to follow the present season of war. So also is it an open 
and interesting question whether the drift in that direc- 

220 On the Nature of Peace 

tion, if such is the set of it, can be counted on to prove 
sufficiently swift and massive, so as not to be overtaken 
and overborne by the push of agencies that make for dis- 
sension and warlike enterprise. 

Anything like a categorical answer to these questions 
would have to be a work of vaticination or of effrontery, 
possibly as much to the point the one as the other. But 
there are certain conditions precedent to a lasting peace 
as the outcome of events now in train, and there are cer- 
tain definable contingencies conditioned on such current 
facts as the existing state of the industrial arts and the 
state of popular sentiment, together with the conjuncture 
of circumstances under which these factors will come into 

The state of the industrial arts, as it bears on the peace 
and its violation, has been spoken of above. It is of such 
a character that a judiciously prepared offensive launched 
by any Power of the first rank at an opportune time can 
reach and lay waste any given country of the habitable 
globe. The conclusive evidence of this is at hand, and it 
is the major premise underlying all current proposals and 
projects of peace, as well as the refusal of the nations 
now on the defensive to enter into negotiations looking 
to an "inconclusive peace." This state of the case is not 
commonly recognised in so many words, but it is well 
enough understood. So that all peace projects that shall 
hope to find a hearing must make up their account with 
it, and must show cause why they should be judged com- 
petent to balk any attempted offensive. In an inarticulate 
or inchoate fashion, perhaps, but none the less with ever- 
increasing certitude and increasing apprehension, this 
state of the case is also coming to be an article of pop- 
ular "knowledge and belief/' whenever much or little 

Peace and Neutrality 221 

thought is spent on the outlook for peace. It has already 
had a visible effect in diminishing the exclusiveness of 
nationalities and turning the attention of the pacific peo- 
ples to the question of feasible ways and means of inter- 
national co-operation in case of need ; but it has not hith- 
erto" visibly lessened the militant spirit among these na- 
tions, nor has it lowered the tension of their national 
pride, at least not yet ; rather the contrary, in fact. 

The effect, upon the popular temper, of this inchoate 
realisation of the fatality that so lies in the modern state 
of the industrial arts, varies from one country to another, 
according to the varying position in which they are placed, 
or in which they conceive themselves to be placed. 
Among the belligerent nations it has put the spur of fear 
to their need of concerted action as well as to their efforts 
to strengthen the national defense. But the state of opin- 
ion and sentiment abroad in the nation in time of war is 
no secure indication of what it will be after the return to 
peace. The American people, the largest and most imme- 
diately concerned of the neutral nations, should afford 
more significant evidence of the changes in the popular 
attitude likely to follow from a growing realisation of 
this state of the case, that the advantage has passed de- 
finitively to any well prepared and resolute offensive, and 
that no precautions of diplomacy and no practicable meas- 
ures of defensive armament will any longer give security, 
provided always that there is anywhere a national 
Power actuated by designs of imperial dominion. 

It is, of course, only little by little that the American 
people and their spokesmen have come to realise their 
own case under this late modern situation, and hitherto 
only in an imperfect degree. Their first response to the 
stimulus has been a display of patriotic self-sufficiency 

222 On the Nature of Peace 

and a move to put the national defense on a war-footing, 
such as would be competent to beat off all aggression. 
Those elements of the population who least realise the 
gravity of the situation, and who are at the same time 
commercially interested in measures of armament or in 
military preferment, have not begun to shift forward be- 
yond this position of magniloquence and resolution; nor 
is there as yet much intimation that they see beyond it, 
although there is an ever-recurring hint that they in a 
degree appreciate the practical difficulty of persuading a 
pacific people to make adequate preparation beforehand, in 
equipment and trained man-power, for such a plan of self- 
sufficient self-defense. But increasingly among those who 
are, by force of temperament or insight or by lack of the 
pecuniary and the placeman's interest, less confident of 
an appeal to the nation's prowess, there is coming for- 
ward an evident persuasion that warlike preparations 
"preparedness" alone and carried through by the Re- 
public in isolation, will scarcely serve the turn. 

There are at least two lines of argument, or of persua- 
sion, running to the support of such a view; readiness 
for a warlike defense, by providing equipment and trained 
men, might prove a doubtfully effectual measure even 
when carried to the limit of tolerance that will always 
be reached presently in any democratic country; and 
then, too, there is hope of avoiding the necessity of such 
warlike preparation, at least in the same extreme degree, 
by means of some practicable working arrangement to be 
effected with other nations who are in the same case. 
Hitherto the farthest reach of these pacific schemes for 
maintaining the peace, or for the common defense, has 
taken the shape of a projected league of neutral nations 
to keep the peace by enforcement of specified interna- 

Peace and Neutrality 223 

tional police regulations or by compulsory arbitration of 
international disputes. It is extremely doubtful how far, 
if at all, popular sentiment of any effectual force falls in 
with this line of precautionary measures. Yet it is evi- 
dent that popular sentiment, and popular apprehension, 
has been stirred profoundly by the events of the past 
two years, and the resulting change that is already visible 
in the prevailing sentiment as regards the national de- 
fense would argue that more far-reaching changes in the 
same connection are fairly to be looked for within a rea- 
sonable allowance of time. 

In this American case the balance of effectual public 
opinion hitherto is to all appearance quite in doubt, but 
it is also quite unsettled. The first response has been a 
display of patriotic emotion and national self-assertion. 
The further, later and presumably more deliberate, ex- 
pressions of opinion carry a more obvious note of appre- 
hension and less of stubborn or unreflecting national 
pride. It may be too early to anticipate a material shift 
of base, to a more neutral, or less exclusively national 
footing in matters of the common defense. 

The national administration has been moving at an ac- 
celerated rate in the direction not of national isolation 
and self-reliance resting on a warlike equipment formid- 
able enough to make or break the peace at will such 
as the more truculent and irresponsible among the poli- 
ticians have spoken for but rather in the direction of 
moderating or curtailing all national pretensions that are 
not of undoubted material consequence, and of seeking a 
common understanding and concerted action with those 
nationalities whose effectual interests in the matters of 
peace and war coincide with the American. The admin- 
istration has grown visibly more pacific in the course of 

224 On the Nature of Peace 

its exacting experience, more resolutely, one might even 
say more aggressively pacific ; but the point of chief at- 
tention in all this strategy of peace has also visibly been 
shifting somewhat from the maintenance of a running 
equilibrium between belligerents and a keeping of the 
peace from day to day, to the ulterior and altogether dif- 
ferent question of what is best to be done toward a con- 
clusive peace at the close of hostilities, and the ways and 
means of its subsequent perpetuation. 

This latter is, in effect, an altogether different question 
from that of preserving neutrality and amicable relations 
in the midst of importunate belligerents, and it may even, 
conceivably, perhaps not unlikely, come to involve a pre- 
cautionary breach of the current peace and a taking of 
sides in the war with an urgent view to a conclusive out- 
come. It would be going too far to impute to the admin- 
istration, at the present stage, such an aggressive attitude 
in its pursuit of a lasting peace as could be called a policy 
of defensive offense; but it will shock no one's sensi- 
bilities to say that such a policy, involving a taking of 
sides and a renouncing of national isolation, is visibly less 
remote from the counsels of the administration today than 
it has been at any earlier period. - 

In this pacific attitude, increasingly urgent and increas- 
ingly far-reaching and apprehensive, the administration 
appears to be speaking for the common man rather than 
for the special interests or the privileged classes. Such 
would appear, on the face of the returns, to be the mean- 
ing of the late election. It is all the more significant on 
that account, since in the long run it is after all the com- 
mon man that will have to pass on the expediency of any 
settled line of policy and to bear the material burden 
of carrying it into effect. 

Peace and Neutrality 225 

It may seem rash to presume that a popularly accred- 
ited administration in a democratic country must approx- 
imately reflect the effectual changes of popular sentiment 
and desire. Especially would it seem rash to anyone 
looking on from the point of view of an undemocratic 
nation, and therefore prone to see the surface fluctuations 
of excitement and shifting clamor. But those who are 
within the democratic pale will know that any adminis- 
tration in such a country, where official tenure and con- 
tinued incumbency of the party rest on a popular vote, 
any such administration is a political organisation and is 
guided by political expediency, in the tawdry sense of the 
phrase. Such a political situation has the defects of its 
qualities, as has been well and frequently expounded by 
its critics, but it has also the merits of its shortcomings. 
In a democracy of this modern order any incumbent of 
high office is necessarily something of a politician, quite 
indispensably so ; and a politician at the same time nec- 
essarily is something of a demagogue. He yields to the 
popular drift, or to the set of opinion and demands among 
the effective majority on whom he leans; and he can 
not even appear to lead, though he may surreptitiously 
lead opinion in adroitly seeming to reflect it and obey it. 
Ostensible leadership, such as has been staged in this 
country from time to time, has turned out to be ostensible 
only. The politician must be adroit; but if he is also to 
be a statesman he must be something more. He is under 
the necessity of guessing accurately what the drift of 
events and opinion is going to be on the next reach 
ahead; and in taking coming events by the forelock he 
may be able to guide and shape the drift of 'opinion and 
sentiment somewhat to his own liking. But all the while 
he must keep within the lines of the long-term set of the 

226 On the Nature of Peace 

current as it works out in the habits of thought of the 
common man. 

Such foresight and flexibility is necessary to continued 
survival, but flexibility of convictions alone does not meet 
the requirements. Indeed, it has been tried. It is only 
the minor politicians the most numerous and long- 
lived, it is true who can hold their place in the crevices 
of the party organisation, and get their livelihood from the 
business of party politics, without some power of vision 
and some hazard of forecast. It results from this state 
of the case that the drift of popular sentiment and the 
popular response to the stimulus of current events is re- 
flected more faithfully and more promptly by the short- 
lived administrations of a democracy than by the stable 
and formally irresponsible governmental establishments 
of the older order. It should also be noted that these 
democratic administrations are in a less advantageous 
position for the purpose of guiding popular sentiment and 
shaping it to their own ends. 

Now, it happens that at no period within the past half- 
century has the course of events moved with such celerity 
or with so grave a bearing on the common good and the 
prospective contingencies of national life as during the 
present administration. This apparent congruity of the 
administration's policy with the drift of popular feeling 
and belief will incline anyone to put a high rating on the 
administration's course of conduct, in international rela- 
tions as well as in national measures that have a bearing 
on international relations, as indicating the course taken 
by sentiment and second thought in the community at 
large, for, in effect, whether or not in set form, the com- 
munity at large reflects on any matters of such gravity 

Peace and Neutrality 227 

and urgency as to force themselves upon the attention of 
the common man. 

Two main lines of reflection have visibly been enforced 
on the administration by the course of events in the inter- 
national field. There has been a growing apprehension, 
mounting in the later months to something like the rank 
of a settled conviction, that the Republic has been marked 
down for reduction to a vassal state by the dynastic 
Empire now engaged with its European adversaries. In 
so saying that the Republic has been marked down for 
subjection it is not intended to intimate that deliberate 
counsel has been had by the Imperial establishment on 
that prospective enterprise; still less that a resolution 
to such effect, with specification of ways and means, has 
been embodied in documentary form and deposited for 
future reference in the Imperial archives. All that is 
intended, and all that is necessary to imply, is that events 
are in train to such effect that the subjugation of the 
American republic will necessarily find its place in the 
sequence presently, provided that the present Imperial 
adventure is brought to a reasonably auspicious issue; 
thought it does not follow that this particular enterprise 
need be counted on as the next large adventure in do- 
minion to be undertaken when things again fall into prom- 
ising shape. This latter point would, of course, depend 
on the conjuncture of circumstances, chief of which would 
have to be the exigencies of imperial dominion shaping 
the policy of the Empire's natural and necessary ally in 
the Far East All this has evidently been coming more 
and more urgently into the workday deliberations of the 
American administration. Of course, it is not spoken 
of in set terms to this effect in official utterances, per- 
haps not even within doors ; that sort of thing is not done. 

228 On the Nature of Peace 

But it can do no harm to use downright expressions in a 
scientific discussion of these phenomena, with a view to 
understanding the current drift of things in this field. 

Beyond this is the similar apprehension, similarly 
though more slowly and reluctantly rising to the level of 
settled conviction, that the American commonwealth is not 
fit to take care of its own case single-handed. This ap- 
prehension is enforced more and more unmistakably with 
every month that passes on the theatre of war. And it 
is reenforced by the constantly more obvious reflection 
that the case of the American commonwealth in this mat- 
ter is the same as that of the democratic countries of 
Europe, and of the other European colonies. It is not, 
or at least one may believe it is not yet, that in the patri- 
otic apprehension of the common man, or of the admin- 
istration which speaks for him, the resources of the coun- 
try would be inadequate to meet any contingencies of the 
kind that might arise, whether in respect of industrial 
capacity or in point of man-power, if these resources were 
turned to this object with the same singleness of purpose 
and the same drastic procedure that marks the course of 
a national establishment guided by no considerations short 
of imperial dominion. The doubt presents itself rather 
as an apprehension that the cost would be extravagantly 
high, in all respects in which cost can be counted ; which 
is presently seconded, on very slight reflection and review 
of experience, by recognition of the fact that a democracy 
is, in point of fact, not to be persuaded to stand under 
arms interminably in mere readiness for a contingency, 
however distasteful the contingency may be. 

In point of fact, a democratic commonwealth is moved 
by other interests in the main, and the common defense 
is a secondary consideration, not a primary interest, 

Peace and Neutrality 229 

unless in the exceptional case of a commonwealth so placed 
under the immediate threat of invasion as to have the 
common defense forced into the place of paramount con- 
sequence in its workday habits of thought. The Amer- 
ican republic is not so placed. Anyone may satisfy him- 
self by reasonable second thought that the people of this 
nation are not to be counted on to do their utmost in 
time of peace to prepare for war. They may be per- 
suaded, to do much more than has been their habit, and 
adventurous politicians may commit them to much more 
than the people at large would wish to undertake, but 
when all is done that can be counted on for a permanency, 
up to the limit of popular tolerance, it would be a bold 
guess that should place the result at more than one-half 
of what the country is capable of. Particularly would 
the people's patience balk at the extensive military train- 
ing requisite to put the country in an adequate position 
of defense against a sudden and well-prepared offensive. 
It is otherwise with a dynastic State, to the directorate of 
which all other interests are necessarily secondary, sub- 
sidiary, and mainly to be considered only in so far as 
they are contributory to the nation's readiness for warlike 

America at the same time is placed in an extra-hazard- 
ous position, between the two seas beyond which to either 
side lie the two Imperial Powers whose place in the mod- 
ern economy of nations it is to disturb the peace in an 
insatiable quest of dominion. This position is no longer 
defensible in isolation, under the later state of the indus- 
trial arts, and the policy of isolation that has guided the 
national policy hitherto is therefore falling out of date. 
The question is as to the manner of its renunciation, 
rather than the fact of it. It may end in a defensive co- 

230 On the Nature of Peace 

partnership with other nations who are placed on the 
defensive by the same threatening situation, or it may end 
in a bootless struggle for independence, but the choice 
scarcely extends beyond this alternative. It will be said, 
of course, that America is competent to take care of 
itself and its Monroe doctrine in the future as in the past. 
But that view, spoken for cogently by thoughtful men 
and by politicians looking for party advantage, overlooks 
the fact that the modem technology has definitively 
thrown the advantage to the offensive, and that interven- 
ing seas can no longer be counted on as a decisive obstacle. 
On this latter head, what was reasonably true fifteen 
years ago is doubtful today, and it is in all reasonable 
expectation invalid for the situation fifteen years hence. 
The other peoples that are of a neutral temper may 
need the help of America sorely enough in their endeav- 
ours to keep the peace, but America's need of cooperation 
is sorer still, for the Republic is coming into a more pre- 
carious place than any of the others. America is also, 
at least potentially, the most democratic of the greater 
Powers, and is handicapped with all the disabilities of a 
democratic commonwealth in the face of war. America 
is also for the present, and perhaps for the calculable fu- 
ture, the most powerful of these greater Powers, in point 
of conceivably available resources, though not in actually 
available fighting-power; and the entrance of America 
unreservedly into a neutral league would consequently be 
decisive both of the purposes of the league and of its 
efficiency for the purpose; particularly if the neutralisa- 
tion of interests among the members of the league were 
carried so far as to make withdrawal and independent 
action disadvantageous. 

Peace and Neutrality 231 

On the establishment of such a neutral league, with 
such neutralisation of national interests as would assure 
concerted action in time of stress, the need of armament 
on the part of the American republic would disappear, 
at least to the extent that no increase of armed force 
would be advisable. The strength of the Republic lies in 
its large and varied resources and the unequalled indus- 
trial capacity of its population, a capacity which is today 
seriously hampered by untoward business interests and 
business methods sheltered under national discrimination, 
but which would come more nearly to its own so soon 
as these national discriminations were corrected or abro- 
gated in the neutralisation of national pretensions. The 
neutrally-minded countries of Europe have been con- 
strained to learn the art of modern war, as also to equip 
themselves with the necessary appliances, sufficient to 
meet all requirements for keeping the peace through such 
a period as can or need be taken into account, provided 
the peace that is to come on the conclusion of the pres- 
ent war shall be placed on so "conclusive" a footing as 
will make it anything substantially more than a season of 
recuperation for that warlike Power about whose enter- 
prise in dominion the whole question turns. Provided 
that suitably "substantial guarantees" of a reasonable 
quiescence on the part of this Imperial Power are had, 
there need be no increase of the American armament. 
Any increased armament would in that case amount to 
nothing better than an idle duplication of plant and per- 
sonnel already on hand and sufficient to meet the require- 

To meet the contingencies had in view in its formation, 
such a league would have to be neutralised to the point 
that all pertinent national pretensions would fall into vir- 

232 On the Nature of Peace 

tual abeyance, so that all the necessary resources at the 
disposal of the federated nations would automatically 
come under the control of the league's appointed au- 
thorities without loss of time, whenever the need might 
arise. That is to say, national interests and pretensions 
would have to give way to a collective control sufficient 
to insure prompt and concerted action. In the face of 
such a neutral league Imperial Japan alone would be un- 
able to make a really serious diversion or to entertain much 
hope of following up its quest of dominion. The Japanese 
Imperial establishment might even be persuaded peaceably 
to let its unoffending neighbours live their own life ac- 
cording to their own light. It is, indeed, possibly the ap- 
prehension of some such contingency that has hurried the 
rapacity of the Island Empire into the headlong indecen- 
cies of the past year or two. 



It may seem early (January 1917) to offer a surmise 
as to what must be the manner of league into which the 
pacific nations are to enter and by which the peace will 
be kept, in case such a move is to be made. But the cir- 
cumstances that are to urge such a line of action, and 
that will condition its carrying out in case it is entered on, 
have already come into bearing and should, on the whole, 
no longer be especially obscure to anyone who will let 
the facts of the case rather than his own predilections 
decide what he will believe. By and large, the pressure 
of these conditioning circumstances may be seen, and the 
line of least resistance under this pressure may be cal- 
culated with due allowance of a margin of error owing 
to unknown contingencies of time and minor variables. 

Time is of the essence of the case. So that what would 
have been dismissed as idle vapor two years ago has al- 
ready become subject of grave deliberation today, and 
may rise to paramount urgency that far hence. Time 
is needed to appreciate and get used to any innovation of 
appreciable gravity, particularly where the innovation de- 
pends in any degree on a change in public sentiment, as 
in this instance. The present outlook would seem to be 
that no excess of time is allowed in these premises; but 
it should also be noted that events are moving with unex- 
ampled celerity, and are impinging on the popular ap- 


234 On the Nature of Peace 

prehension with unexampled force, unexampled on such 
a scale. It is hoped that a recital of these circumstances 
that provoke to action along this line will not seem un- 
warrantably tedious, and that a tentative definition of 
the line of least resistance under pressure of these cir- 
cumstances may not seem unwarrantably presumptuous. 

The major premise in the case is the felt need of secu- 
rity from aggression at the hands of Imperial Germany 
and its auxiliary Powers; seconded by an increasingly 
uneasy apprehension as to the prospective line of con- 
duct on the part of Imperial Japan, bent on a similar 
quest of dominion. There is also the less articulate ap- 
prehension of what, if anything, may be expected from 
Imperial Russia; an obscure and scarcely definable fac- 
tor, which comes into the calculation chiefly by way of re- 
enforcing the urgency of the situation created by the dy- 
nastic ambitions of these other two Imperial States. Fur- 
ther, the pacific nations, the leading ones among them 
being the French and English-speaking peoples, are com- 
ing to recognise that no one among them can provide for 
its own security single-handed, even at the cost of their 
utmost endeavour in the way of what is latterly called 
"preparedness ;" and they are at the same time unwilling 
to devote their force unreservedly to warlike preparation, 
having nothing to gain. The solution proposed is a league 
of the pacific nations, commonly spoken of at the present 
stage as a league to enforce peace, or less ambitiously 
as a league to enforce arbitration. The question being 
left somewhat at loose ends, whether the projected league 
is to include the two or three Imperial Powers whose 
pacific intentions are, euphemistically, open to doubt. 

Such is the outline of the project and its premises. An 
attempt to fill in this outline will, perhaps, conduce to 

Elimination of the Unfit 235 

an appreciation of what is sought and of what the condi- 
tioning circumstances will enforce in the course of its 
realisation. As touches the fear of aggression, it has 
already been indicated, perhaps with unnecessary iteration, 
that these two Imperial Powers are unable to relinquish 
the quest of dominion through warlike enterprise, because 
as dynastic States they have no other ulterior aim; as 
has abundantly appeared in the great volume of expository 
statements that have come out of the Fatherland the past 
few years, official, semi-official, inspired, and spontane- 
ous. "Assurance of the nation's future" is not trans- 
latable into any other terms. The Imperial dynasty has 
no other ground to stand on, and can not give up the en- 
terprise so long as it can muster force for any formidable 
diversion, to get anything in the way of dominion by seiz- 
ure, threat or chicane. 

This is coming to be informally and loosely, but none 
the less definitively, realised by the pacific nations ; and 
the realisation of it is gaining in clearness and assurance 
as time passes. And it is backed by the conviction that, 
in the nature of things, no engagement on the part of 
such a dynastic State has any slightest binding force, be- 
yond the material constraint that would enforce it from 
the outside. So the demand has been diplomatically 
phrased as a demand for "substantial guarantees.'* Any 
gain in resources on the part of these Powers is to be 
counted as a- gain in the ways and means of disturbing 
the peace, without reservation. 

The pacific nations include among them two large items, 
both of which are indispensable to the success of the proj- 
ect, the United States and the United Kingdom. The 
former brings in its train, virtually without exception or 
question, the other American republics, none of which 

236 On the Nature of Peace 

can practicably go in or stay out except in company and 
collusion with the United States. The United Kingdom 
after the same fashion, and with scarcely less assurance, 
may be counted on to carry the British colonies. Evi- 
dently, without both of these groups the project would 
not even make a beginning. Beyond this is to be counted 
in as elements of strength, though scarcely indispensable, 
France, Belgium, the Netherlands and the Scandinavian 
countries. The other west-European nations would in all 
probability be found in the league, although so far as 
regards its work and its fortunes their adhesion would 
scarcely be a matter of decisive consequence; they may 
therefore be left somewhat on one side in any considera- 
tion of the circumstances that would shape the league, 
its aims and its limitations. The Balkan states, in the 
wider acceptance, they that frequent the Sign of the 
Double Cross, are similarly negligible in respect of the 
organisation of such a league or its resources and the 
mutual concessions necessary to be made between its 
chief members. Russia is so doubtful a factor, particu- 
larly as regards its place and value in industry, culture and 
politics, in the near future, as to admit nothing much 
more than a doubt on what its relation to the situation 
will be. The evil intentions of the Imperial-bureaucratic 
establishment are probably no more to be questioned than 
the good intentions of the underlying peoples of Russia. 
China will have to be taken in, if for no other reason than 
the use to which the magnificent resources of that country 
would be turned by its Imperial neighbour in the absence 
of insurmountable interference from outside. But China 
will come in on any terms that include neutrality and 

Elimination of the Unfit 237 

The question than arises as to the Imperial Powers 
whose dynastic enterprise is primarily to be hedged against 
by such a league. Reflection will show that if the league 
is to effect any appreciable part of its purpose, these 
Powers will also be included in the league, or at least in 
its jurisdiction. A pacific league not including these 
Powers, or not extending its jurisdiction and surveillance 
to them and their conduct, would come to the same thing 
as a coalition of nations in two hostile groups, the one 
standing on the defensive against the warlike machina- 
tions of the other, and both groups bidding for the favor 
of those minor Powers whose traditions and current as- 
pirations run to national (dynastic) aggrandizement by 
way of political intrigue. It would come to a more artic- 
ulate and accentuated form of that balance of power that 
has latterly gone bankrupt in Europe, with the most cor- 
rupt and unreliable petty monarchies of eastern Europe 
vested with a casting vote; and it would also involve 
a system of competitive armaments of the same general 
character as what has also shown itself bankrupt. It 
would, in other words, mean a virtual return to the status 
quo ante, but with an overt recognition of its provisional 
character, and with the lines of division more sharply 
drawn. That is to say, it would amount to reinstating the 
situation which the projected league is intended to avert. 
It is evidently contained in the premises that the projected 
league must be all-inclusive, at least as regards its juris- 
diction and surveillance. The argument will return to 
this point presently. 

The purpose of the projected league is peace and secu- 
rity, commonly spoken of under patriotic preconceptions 
as "national" peace and security. This will have to mean 
a competent enforcement of peace, on such a footing of 

238 On the Nature of Peace 

overmastering force at the disposal of the associated pa- 
cific nations as to make security a matter of ordinary 
routine. It is true, the more genial spokesmen of the 
project are given to the view that what is to come of it 
all is a comity of neutral nations, amicably adjusting 
their own relations among themselves in a spirit of peace 
and good-will. But this view is over-sanguine, in that it 
overlooks the point that into this prospective comity of 
nations Imperial Germany (and Imperial Japan) fit like 
a drunken savage with a machine gun. It also overlooks 
the patent fatality that these two are bound to come into 
a coalition at the next turn, with whatever outside and 
subsidiary resources they can draw on ; provided only that 
a reasonable opening for further enterprise presents itself. 
The league, in other terms, must be in a position to 
enforce peace by overmastering force, and to anticipate 
any move at cross purposes with the security of the pa- 
cific nations. 

This end can be reached by either one of two ways. 
If the dynastic States are left to their own devices, it will 
be incumbent on the associated nations to put in the 
field a standing force sufficient to prevent a recourse to 
arms ; - which means competitive armament and universal 
military rule. Or the dynastic States may be taken into 
partnership and placed under such surveillance and con- 
straint as to practically disarm them ; which would ad- 
mit virtual disarmament of the federated nations. The 
former arrangement has nothing in its favour, except 
the possibility that no better or less irksome arrangement 
can be had under existing circumstances ; that is to say 
that the pacific nations may not be able to bring these 
dynastic states to terms of disarmament under surveil- 
lance. They assuredly can not except by force; and 

Eliminatipn of the Unfit 239 

this is the precise point on which the continued hostili- 
ties in Europe turn today. In diplomatic parable the 
German Imperial spokesmen say that they can accept (or 
as they prefer to phrase it, grant) no terms that do not 
fully safeguard the Future of the Fatherland; and in 
similarly diplomatic parable the spokesmen of the En- 
tente insist that Prussian militarism must be permanently 
put out of commission ; but it all means the same thing, 
viz. that the Imperial establishment is to be (or is not to 
be) disabled beyond the possibility of its entering on a 
similar warlike enterprise again, when it has had time for 
recuperation. The dynastic statesmen, and the lay sub- 
jects of the Imperial establishment, are strenuously set 
on securing a fair opportunity for recuperation and a 
wiser endeavour to achieve that dominion which the pres- 
ent adventure promises to defeat; while the Entente 
want no recurrence, and are persuaded that a recurrence 
can be avoided only on the footing of a present collapse 
of the Imperial power and a scrupulously enforced pros- 
tration of it henceforth. 

Without the definitive collapse of the Imperial power 
no pacific league of nations can come to anything much 
more than armistice. On the basis of such a collapse the 
league may as well administer its affairs economically by 
way of an all-around reduction of armaments, as by the 
costlier and more irksome way of "preparedness/" But 
a sensible reduction of armaments on the part of the neu- 
tral nations implies disarmament of the dynastic States. 
Which would involve a neutral surveillance of the affairs 
of these dynastic States in such detail and with such ex- 
ercise of authority as would reduce their governments 
to the effective status of local administrative officials. 
Out of which ; in turn, would arise complications that 

240 On the Nature of Peace 

would lead to necessary readjustments all along the line. 
It would involve the virtual, if not also the formal, aboli- 
tion of the monarchy, since the monarchy has no other 
use than that of international war and intrigue; or at 
least it would involve the virtual abrogation of its pow- 
ers, reducing it to the same status of faineantise as now 
characterises the British crown. Evidently this means a 
serious intermeddling in the domestic concerns and ar- 
rangements of the Fatherland, such as is not admissible 
under the democratic principle that any people must be 
left free to follow their own inclinations and devices in 
their own concerns; at the same time that this degree 
of interference is imperative if the peace is to be kept on 
any other footing than that of eternal vigilance and su- 
perior armed force, with a people whose own inclinations 
and devices are of the kind now grown familiar in the 
German case, all of which also applies, with accentua- 
tion, in the case of Imperial Japan. 

Some such policy of neutral surveillance in the affairs 
of these peoples whose pacific temper is under suspicion, 
is necessarily involved in a plan to enforce peace by 
concert of the pacific nations, and it will necessarily carry 
implications and farther issues, touching not only these 
supposedly recalcitrant peoples, but also as regards the 
pacific nations themselves. Assuming always that the 
prime purpose and consistent aim of the projected league 
is the peace and security of those pacific nations on whose 
initiative it is to be achieved, then it should be reasonable 
to assume that the course of procedure in its organisation, 
administration and further adaptations and adjustments 
must follow the logic of necessities leading to that end. 
He who wills the end must make up his account with the 

Elimination of the Unfit 241 

The end in this case is peace and security ; which means, 
for practical purposes, peace and good-will. Ill-will is 
not a secure foundation of peace. Even the military 
strategists of the Imperial establishment recommend a 
programme of "frightfulness" only as a convenient mili- 
tary expedient, essentially a provisional basis of tranquil- 
ity. In the long run and as a permanent peace measure 
it is doubtless not to the point. Security is finally to be 
had among or between modern peoples only on the ground 
of a common understanding and an impartially common 
basis of equity, or something approaching that basis as 
nearly as circumstances will permit. Which means that 
in so far as the projected peace-compact is to take effect 
in any enduring way, and leave the federated nations some 
degree of freedom from persistent apprehension and ani- 
mosity, as well as from habitual insecurity of life and 
limb, the league must not only be all-inclusive, but it must 
be inclusively uniform in all its requirements and regu- 

The peoples of the quondam Imperial nations must 
come into the league on a footing of formal equality with 
the rest. This they can not do without the virtual abdi- 
cation of their dynastic governmental establishments and 
a consequent shift to a democratic form of organisation, 
and a formal abrogation of class privileges and prerog- 

However, a virtual abdication or cancelment of the dy- 
nastic rule, such as to bring it formally into the same 
class with the British crown, would scarcely meet the re- 
quirements in the case of the German Imperial establish- 
ment; still more patently not in the case of Imperial 
Japan. If, following the outlines of the decayed British 
crown, one or the other of these Imperial establishments 

242 On the Nature of Peace 

were by formal enactment reduced to a state of nominal 
desuetude, the effect would be very appreciably different 
from what happens in the British community, where the 
crown has lost its powers by failure of the requisite sub- 
ordination on the part of the people, and not by a formal 
abdication of rights. In the German case, and even more 
in the Japanese case, the strength of the Imperial estab- 
lishment lies in the unimpaired loyalty of the populace; 
which would remain nearly intact at the outset, and would 
thin out only by insensible degrees in the sequel ; so that 
if only the Imperial establishment were left formally 
standing it would command the fealty of the common 
run in spite of any formal abrogation of its powers, and 
the course of things would, in effect, run as before the 
break. In effect, to bring about a shift to a democratic 
basis the dynastic slate would have to be wiped very 
clean indeed. And this shift would be indispensable to 
the successful conduct of such a pacific league of nations, 
since any other than an effectually democratic national 
establishment is to be counted on unfailingly to intrigue 
for dynastic aggrandizement, through good report and 

In a case like that of Imperial Germany, with its fed- 
erated States and subsidiaries, where royalty and nobility 
still are potent preconceptions investing the popular imag- 
ination, and where loyal abnegation in the presence of 
authority still is the chief and staple virtue of the common 
man, in all such cases virtual abdication of the dynastic 
initiative under constitutional forms can be had only by 
a formal and scrupulously complete abrogation of all 
those legal and customary arrangements on which this 
irresponsible exercise of authority has rested and through 
which it has taken effect. Neutralisation in these in- 

Ellminatipn of the Unfit 243 

stances will mean reduction to an unqualified democratic 
footing ; which will, at least at the outset, not be accepta- 
ble to the common people, and will be wholly intolerable 
to the ruling classes. Such a regime, therefore, while it 
is indispensable as a working basis for a neutral league 
of peace, would from the outset have to be enforced 
against the most desperate resistance of the ruling classes, 
headed by the dynastic statesmen and war-lords, and 
backed by the stubborn loyalty of the subject populace. 
It would have to mean the end of things for the ruling 
classes and the most distasteful submission to an alien 
scheme of use and wont for the populace. And yet it is 
also an indispensable element in any scheme of pacifica- 
tion that aims at permanent peace and security. In time, 
it may well be believed, the people of the Fatherland 
might learn to do well enough without the gratuitous 
domination of their ruling classes, but at the outset it 
would be a heartfelt privation. 

It follows that a league to enforce peace would have to 
begin its regime with enforcing peace on terms of the 
unconditional surrender of the formidable warlike na- 
tions ; which could be accomplished only by the absolute 
and irretrievable defeat of these Powers as they now 
stand. The question will, no doubt, present itself, Is the 
end worth the cost? That question can, of course, not 
be answered in absolute terms, inasmuch as it resolves 
itself into a question of taste and prepossession.' An an- 
swer to it would also not be greatly to the purpose here, 
since it would have no particular bearing on the course 
of action likely to be pursued by these pacific nations in 
their quest of a settled peace. It is more to the point to 
ask what is likely to be the practical decision of these 

244 On the Nature of Peace 

peoples on that head when the question finally presents 
itself in a concrete form. 

Again it is necessary to call to mind that any momen- 
tous innovation which rests on popular sentiment will 
take time ; that consequently anything like a plebiscite on 
the question today would scarcely give a safe index of 
what the decision is likely to be when presently put to the 
test; and that as things go just now, swiftly and urgent, 
any time-allowance counts at something more than its 
ordinary workday coefficient. What can apparently be 
said with some degree of confidence is that just now, 
during these two years past, sentiment has been moving 
in the direction indicated, and that any growing inclina- 
tion of the kind is being strongly re-enforced by a grow- 
ing realisation that nothing but heroic remedies will avail 
at this juncture. If it comes to be currently recognised 
that a settled peace can be had only at the cost of eradi- 
cating privilege and royalty from the warlike nations, it 
would seem reasonable to expect, from their present state 
of mind, that the pacific nations will scarcely hesitate 
to apply that remedy, provided always that the fortunes 
of war fall out as that measure would require, and pro- 
vided also that the conflict lasts long enough and severe 
enough to let them make up their mind to anything so 

There is a certain side issue bearing on this question of 
the ulterior probabilities of popular sentiment and na- 
tional policy as to what is to be done with the warlike 
nations in the event that the allied nations who fight for 
neutrality have the disposal of such matters. The side 
issue may seem remote, and it may not unlikely be over- 
looked among the mass of graver and more tangible con- 

Elimination of the Unfit 245 

siderations. It was remarked above that the United 
Kingdom is one of the two chief pillars of the projected 
house of peace ; and it may be added without serious fear 
of contradiction or annoyance that the United Kingdom is 
also the one among these pacific nations that comes near- 
est being capable, in the event of such an emergency, 
to take care of its own case single-handed. For better 
or worse, British adhesion to the project is indispensable, 
and the British are in a position virtually to name their 
own terms of adhesion. The British commonwealth 
a very inclusive phrase in this connection must form the 
core of the pacific league, if any, and British sentiment 
will have a very great place in the terms of its formation 
and in the terms which it will be inclined to offer the 
Imperial coalition at the settlement. 

Now, it happens that the British community entered 
on this war as a democratic monarchy ruled and officered 
by a body of gentlemen doubtless the most correct and 
admirable muster of gentlemen, of anything approaching 
its volume, that the modern world can show. But the 
war has turned out not to be a gentlemen's war. It has 
on the contrary been a war of technological exploits, re- 
enforced with all the beastly devices of the heathen. It 
is a war in which all the specific traits of the well-bred 
and gently-minded man are a handicap ; in which veracity, 
gallantry, humanity, liberality are conducive to nothing 
but defeat and humiliation. The death-rate among the 
British gentlemen-officers in the early months, and for 
many months, ran extravagantly high, for the most part 
because they were gallant gentlemen as well as officers 
imbued with the good, old class spirit of noblesse oblige, 
that has made half the tradition and more than half the 
working theory of the British officer in the field, good, 

246 On the Nature of Peace 

but ol-d, hopelessly out of date. That generation of offi- 
cers died, for the most part; being unfit to survive or 
to serve the purpose under these modern conditions of 
warfare, to which their enemy on the other hand had 
adapted themselves with easy facility from beforehand. 
The gentlemanly qualifications, and the material apparatus 
of gentility, and, it will perhaps have to be admitted, the 
gentlemen, have fallen into the background, or perhaps 
rather have measurably fallen into abeyance, among the 
officers of the line. There may be more doubt as to the 
state of things in respect of the gentility of the staff, but 
the best that can confidently be said is that it is a point 
in doubt. 

It is hoped that one may say without offense that in the 
course of time the personnel has apparently worked down 
to the level of vulgarity defined by the ways and means 
of this modern warfare ; which means the level on which 
runs a familiar acquaintance with large and complex 
mechanical apparatus, railway and highway transport and 
power, reenforced concrete, excavations and mud, more 
particularly mud, concealment and ambush, and unlimited 
deceit and ferocity. It is not precisely that persons of 
pedigree and gentle breeding have ceased to enter or seek 
entrance to employment as officers, still less that measures 
have been taken to restrain their doing so or to eliminate 
from the service those who have come into it though 
there may present itself a doubt on this point as touches 
the more responsible discretionary positions but only 
that the stock of suitable gentlemen, uncommonly large 
as it is, has been overdrawn ; that those who have lat- 
terly gone into service, or stayed in, have perforce divested 
themselves of their gentility in some appreciable measure, 
particularly as regards class distinction, and have fallen 

Eliminatipn of the Unfit 247 

on their feet in the more commonplace role of common 

Serviceability in this modern warfare is conditioned on 
much the same traits of temperament and training tha* 
make for usefulness in the modern industrial processes 
where large-scale coordinations of movement and an 
effective familiarity with precise and far-reaching me- 
chanical processes is an indispensable requirement, in- 
dispensable in the same measure as the efficient conduct 
of this modern machine industry is indispensable. But 
the British gentleman, in so far as he runs true to type, 
is of no use to modern industry; quite the contrary, in 
fact. Still, the British gentleman is, in point of heredity, 
the same thing over again as the British common man; 
5o that, barring the misdirected training that makes him a 
gentleman, and which can largely be undone under urgent 
need and pressure, he can be made serviceable for such 
uses as the modern warfare requires. Meantime the 
very large demand for officers, and the insatiable demand 
for capable officers, has brought the experienced and ca- 
pable common man into the case and is in a fair way to 
discredit gentility as a necessary qualification of field 

But the same process of discredit and elimination is 
also extending to the responsible officials who have the 
administration of things in hand. Indeed, the course of 
vulgarisation among the responsible officials has now been 
under way for some appreciable time and with very per- 
ceptible effect, and the rate of displacement appears to 
be gathering velocity with every month that passes. Here, 
as in the field operations, it also appears that gentlemanly 
methods, standards, preconceptions, and knowledge of 
men and things, is no longer to the purpose. Here, too,- 

248 On the Nature of Peace 

it is increasingly evident that this is not a gentlemen's 
war. And the traditional qualifications that have sufficed 
in the past, at least to the extent of enabling the British 
management to "muddle through," as they are proudly 
in the habit of saying, these qualifications are of slight 
account in this technological conjuncture of the nation's 
fortunes. It would perhaps be an under-statement to 
say that these gentlemanly qualifications are no longer 
of any account, for the purpose immediately in hand, and 
it would doubtless not do to say that they are wholly and 
unreservedly disserviceable as things run today; but 
captious critics might find at least a precarious footing of 
argument on such a proposition. 

Through the course of the nineteenth century the 
British government had progressively been taking on the 
complexion of a "gentlemen's agreement;" a government 
by gentlemen, for gentlemen, and of gentlemen, too, be- 
yond what could well be alleged in any other known in- 
stance, though never wholly so. No government could be 
a government of gentlemen exclusively, since there is no 
pecuniary profit in gentlemen as such, and therefore no 
object in governing them; more particularly could there 
never ^be any incentive in it for gentlemen, whose liveli- 
hood is, in the nature of the case, drawn from some one 
else. ^ A gentlemen's government can escape death by 
inanition only in so far as it serves the material interest 
of its class, as contrasted with the underlying population 
from which the class draws its livelihood. This British 
arrangement of a government by prudent and humane gen- 
tlemen with a view to the conservation of that state of 
things that best conduced to the material well-being of 
their own class, has on the whole had the loyal support 
of the underlying populace, with an occasional floundering 

Elimination of the Unfit 249 

protest. But the protest has never taken the shape of 
an expressed distrust of gentlemen, considered as the 
staple ways and means of government ; nor has the direc- 
tion of affairs ever descended into the hands of any other 
or lower class or condition of men. 

On the whole, this British arrangement for the control 
of national affairs by a body of interested gentlemen- 
investors has been, and perhaps still is, just as well at 
home in the affectionate preconceptions of the nineteenth 
century British as the corresponding German usufruct 
by self-appointed swaggering aristocrats has been among 
the underlying German population, or as the American 
arrangement of national control by business men for busi- 
ness ends. The British and the American arrangements 
run very much to the same substantial effect, of course, 
inasmuch as the British gentlemen represent, as a class, 
the filial generations of a business community, and their 
aims and standards of conduct continue to be such as are 
enforced by the pecuniary interests on which their gen- 
tility is conditioned. They continue to draw the ways 
and means of a worthy life from businesslike arrange- 
ments of a "vested" character, made and provided with 
a view to their nourishment and repose. Their resulting 
usufruct of the community's productive efforts rests on a 
vested interest of a pecuniary sort, sanctioned by the 
sacred rights of property; very much as the analogous 
German dynastic and aristocratic usufruct rests on per- 
sonal prerogative, sanctioned by the sacred rights of au- 
thentic prescription, without afterthought. The two, it 
will be no.ted are very much alike, in effect, "under the 
skin." The great distinguishing mark being that the Ger- 
man usufructuary gentlemen are, in theory at least, gen- 
tlemen-adventurers of prowess and proud words, whose 

250 On the Nature of Peace 

place in the world's economy it is to glorify God and 
disturb the peace; whereas their British analogues are 
gentlemen-investors, of blameless propriety, whose place 
it is more simply to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. 
- All this arrangement of a usufruct with a view to the 
reputable consumption of the community's superfluous 
production has had the cordial support of British senti- 
ment, perhaps fully as cordial as the German popular 
subservience in the corresponding German scheme; both 
being well embedded in the preconceptions of the common 
man. But the war has put it all to a rude test, and has 
called on the British gentlemen's executive committee to 
take over duties for which it was not designed. The exi- 
gencies of this war of technological exploits have been 
almost wholly, and very insistently, of a character not 
contemplated in the constitution of such an executive 
Committee of gentlemen-investors designed to safeguard 
class interests and promote their pecuniary class ad- 
vantage by a blamelessly inconspicuous and indirect man- 
agement of national affairs. The methods are of the class 
known colloquially among the vulgar-spoken American 
politicians as "pussyfooting" and "log-rolling"; but al- 
ways with such circumstance of magnitude, authenticity 
and well-bred deference to precedent, as to give the re- 
sulting routine of subreption, trover and conversion, an 
air not only of benevolent consideration but of austere 

But the most austere courtesy and the most authentical- 
ly dispassionate division of benefits will not meet the 
underbred exigencies of a war conducted on the mechan- 
istic lines of the modern state of the industrial arts. So 
the blameless, and for the purpose imbecile, executive 
committee of gentlemen-investors has been insensibly los- 

Eliminatipn of the Unfit 251 

ing the confidence and the countenance of the common 
man ; who, when all is said, will always have to do what 
is to be done. The order of gentlemanly parleying and 
brokery has, therefore, with many apprehensions of cal- 
amity, been reluctantly and tardily giving ground before 
something that is of a visibly underbred order. Increas- 
ingly underbred, and thereby insensibly approaching the 
character of this war situation, but accepted with visible 
reluctance and apprehension both by the ruling class and 
by the underlying population. The urgent necessity of 
going to such a basis, and of working out the matter in 
hand by an unblushing recourse to that matter-of-fact 
logic of mechanical efficiency, which alone can touch the 
difficulties of the case, but which has no respect of persons, 
this necessity has been present from the outset and has 
been vaguely apprehended for long past, but it is only 
tardily and after the chastening of heavy penalties on this 
gentlemanly imbecility that a substantial move in that 
direction has been made. It has required much British 
resolution to overcome the night-fear of going out into 
the unhallowed ground of matter-of-fact, where the far- 
thest earlier excursions of the governmental agencies had 
taken them no farther than such financial transactions as 
are incident to the accomplishment of anything whatever 
in a commercial nation. And then, too, there is a pe- 
cuniary interest in being interested in financial transac- 

This shifting of discretionary control out of the hands 
of the gentlemen into those of the underbred common 
run, who know how to do what is necessary to be 
done in the face of underbred exigencies, may conceivably 
go far when it has once been started, and it may go for- 
ward at an accelerated rate if the pressure of necessity 
lasts long enough. If time be given for habituation to 

252 On the Nature of Peace 

this manner of directorate in national affairs, so that the 
common man comes to realise how it is feasible to get 
along without gentlemen-investors holding the discretion, 
the outcome may conceivably be very grave. It is a point 
in doubt, but it is conceivable that in such a case the 
gentlemanly executive committee administering affairs in 
the light of the gentlemanly pecuniary interest, will not 
be fully reinstated in the discretionary control of the 
United Kingdom for an appreciable number of years after 
the return of peace. Possibly, even, the regime may be 
permanently deranged, and there is even a shadowy doubt 
possible to be entertained as to whether the vested pecuni- 
ary rights, on which the class of gentlemen rests, may not 
suffer some derangement, in case the control should pass 
into the hands of the underbred and unpropertied for so 
long a season as to let the common man get used to think- 
ing that the vested interests and the sacred rights of gen- 
tility are so much ado about nothing. 

Such an outcome would be extreme, but as a remote 
contingency it is to be taken into account. The privileged 
classes of the United Kingdom should by this time be able 
to see the danger there may be for them and their vested 
interests, pecuniary and moral, in an excessive prolonga- 
tion of the war ; in such postponement of peace as would 
afford time for a popular realisation of their incompetence 
and disservkeability as touches the nation's material well- 
being under modern conditions. To let the nation's war 
experience work to such an outcome, the season of war 
would have to be prolonged beyond what either the hopes 
or the fears of the community have yet contemplated; 
but the point is after all worth noting, as being within 
the premises of the case, that there is herein a remote con- 
tingency of losing, at least for a time, that unformulated 

Elimination of the Unfit 253 

clause in the British constitution which has hitherto re- 
stricted the holding of responsible office to men of pedi- 
gree and of gentle breeding, or at least of very grave 
pecuniary weight; so grave as to make the incumbents 
virtual gentlemen, with a virtual pedigree, and with a 
virtual gentleman's accentuated sense of class interest. 
Should such an eventuality overtake British popular senti- 
ment and belief there is also the remote contingency that 
the rights of ownership and investment would lose a de- 
gree of sanctity. 

It seems necessary to note a further, and in a sense 
more improbable, line of disintegration among modern 
fixed ideas. Among the best entrenched illusions of mod- 
ern economic preconceptions, and in economic as well as 
legal theory, has been the indispensability of funds, and 
the hard and fast limitation of industrial operations by the 
supply or with-holding of funds. The war experience has 
hitherto gone tentatively to show that funds and financial 
transactions, of credit, bargain, sale and solvency, may be 
dispensed with under pressure of necessity ; and apparent- 
ly without seriously hindering that run of mechanical 
fact, on which interest in the present case necessarily cen- 
ters, and which must be counted on to give the outcome. 
Latterly the case is clearing up a little further, on 
further experience and under further pressure of techno- 
logical exigencies, to the effect that financial arrangements 
are indispensable in this connection only because and in 
so far as it has been arranged to consider them indis- 
pensable; as in international trade. They are an indis- 
pensable means of intermediation only in so far as pe- 
cuniary interests are to be furthered or safeguarded in 
the intermediation. When, as has happened with the bel- 
ligerents in the present instance, the national establishment 

254 On the Nature of Peace 

becomes substantially insolvent, it is beginning to appear 
that its affairs can be taken care of with less difficulty and 
with better effect without the use of financial expedients. 
Of course, it takes time to get used to doing things by the 
more direct method and without the accustomed circum- 
locution of accountancy, or the accustomed allowance for 
profits to go to interested parties who, under the financial 
regime, hold a power of discretionary permission in all 
matters that touch the use of the industrial arts. Under 
these urgent material exigencies, investment comes to have 
much of the appearance of a gratuitous drag and drain 
on the processes of industry. 

Here, again, is a sinister contingency ; sinister, that is, 
for those vested rights of ownership by force of which the 
owners of "capital" are enabled to permit or withhold the 
use of the industrial arts by the community at large, on 
pain of privation in case the accustomed toll to the owners 
of capital is not paid. It is, of course, not intended to find 
fault with this arrangement; which has the sanction of 
"time immemorial" and of a settled persuasion that it lies 
at the root of all civilised life and intercourse. It is 
only that in case of extreme need this presumed indis- 
pensable expedient of industrial control has broken down, 
and that experience is proving it to be, in these premises, 
an item of borrowed trouble. Should experience continue 
to run on the same lines for an appreciable period and at 
a high tension, it is at least conceivable that the vested 
right of owners to employ unlimited sabotage in the quest 
of profits might fall so far into disrepute as to leave them 
under a qualified doubt on the return of "normal" con- 
ditions. The common man, in other words, who gathers 
nothing but privation and anxiety from the owners' dis- 
cretionary sabotage, may conceivably stand to lose his 

Elimination of the Unfit 255 

preconception that the vested rights of ownership are the 
cornerstone of his life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. 

The considerations recited in this lengthy excursion on 
the war situation and its probable effects on popular hab- 
its of thought in the United Kingdom go to say that when 
peace comes to be negotiated, with the United Kingdom 
as the chief constituent and weightiest spokesman of the 
allied nations and of the league of pacific neutrals, the rep- 
resentatives of British aims and opinions are likely to 
speak in a different, chastened, and disillusioned fashion, 
as contrasted with what the British attitude was at the 
beginning of hostilities. The gentlemanly British animus 
of arrogant self-sufficiency will have been somewhat 
sobered, perhaps somewhat subdued. Concession to the 
claims and pretensions of the other pacific nations is likely 
to go farther than might once have been expected, par- 
ticularly in the way of concession to any demand for 
greater international comity and less international discrim- 
ination; essentially concession looking to a reduction of 
national pretensions and an incipient neutralisation of na- 
tional interests. Coupled with this will presumably be 
a less conciliatory attitude toward the members of the 
dynastic coalition against whom the war has been fought, 
owing to a more mature realisation of the impossibility of 
a lasting peace negotiated with a Power whose substantial 
core is a warlike and irresponsible dynastic establishment. 
The peace negotiations are likely to run on a lower level 
of diplomatic deference to constituted authorities, and 
with more of a view to the interests and sentiments of the 
underlying population, than was evident in the futile nego- 
tiations had at the outbreak of hostilities. The gentle art 
of diplomacy, that engages the talents of exalted person- 

256 On the Nature of Peace 

ages and well-bred statesmen, has been somewhat dis- 
credited ; and if it turns out that the vulgarisation of the 
directorate in the United Kingdom and its associated allies 
and neutrals will have time to go on to something like 
dominance and authenticity, than the deference which the 
spokesmen of these nations are likely to show for the pre- 
scriptive rights of dynasty, nobility, bureaucracy, or even 
of pecuniary aristocracy, in the countries that make up 
the party of the second part, may be expected to have 
shrunk appreciably, conceivably even to such precarious 
dimensions as to involve the virtual neglect or possible 
downright abrogation of them, in sum and substance. 

Indeed, the chances of a successful pacific league of 
neutrals to come out of the current situation appear to 
be largely bound up with the degree of vulgarisation due 
to overtake the several directorates of the belligerent 
nations as well as the popular habits of thought in these 
and in the neutral countries, during the further course of 
the war. It is too broad a generalisation, perhaps, to say 
that the longer the war lasts the better are the chances of 
such a neutral temper in the interested nations as will 
make a pacific league practicable, but the contrary would 
appear a much less defensible proposition. It is, of course, 
the common man that has the least interest in warlike en- 
terprise, if any, and it is at the same time the common man 
that bears the burden of such enterprise and has also the 
most immediate interest in keeping the peace. If, slowly 
and pervasively, in the course of hard experience, he 
learns to distrust the conduct of affairs by his betters, and 
learns at the same move to trust to his own class to do 
what is necessary and to leave undone what is not, his 
deference to his betters is likely to suffer a decline, such 

Elimination of the Unfit 257 

as should show itself in a somewhat unguarded recourse 
to democratic ways and means. 

In short, there is in this progressive vulgarisation of 
effectual use and wont and of sentiment, in the United 
Kingdom and elsewhere, some slight ground for the hope, 
or the apprehension, that no peace will be made with the 
dynastic Powers of the second part until they cease to 
by dynastic Powers and take on the semblance of demo- 
cratic commonwealths, with dynasties, royalties and privi- 
leged classes thrown in the discard. 

This would probably mean some prolongation of hos- 
tilities, until the dynasties and privileged classes had com- 
pletely exhausted their available resources; and, by the 
same token, until the privileged classes in the more modern 
nations among the belligerents had also been displaced 
from direction and discretion by those underbred classes 
on whom it is incumbent to do what is to be done; or 
until a juncture were reached that comes passably near 
to such a situation. On the contingency of such a course 
of events and some such outcome appears also to hang 
the chance of a workable pacific league. Without further 
experience of the futility of upperclass and pecuniary con- 
trol, to discredit precedent and constituted authority, it 
is scarcely conceivable, e. g., that the victorious allies 
would go the length of coercively discarding the German 
Imperial dynasty and the kept classes that with it con- 
stitute the Imperial State, and of replacing it with a 
democratic organisation of the people in the shape of a 
modern commonwealth; and without a change of that 
nature, affecting that nation and such of its allies as would 
remain on the map, no league of pacific neutrals would 
be able to manage its affairs, even for a time, except on 
a war-footing that would involve a competitive armament 

258 On the Nature of Peace 

against future dynastic enterprises from the same quarter. 
Which comes to saying that a lasting peace is possible on 
no other terms than the disestablishment of the Imperial 
dynasty and the abrogation of all feudalistic remnants of 
privilege in the Fatherland and its allies, together with the 
reduction of those countries to the status of common- 
wealths made up of ungraded men. 

It is easy to speculate on what the conditions precedent 
to such a pacific league of neutrals must of necessity be ; 
but it is not therefore less difficult to make a shrewd guess 
as to the chances of these conditions being met. Of these 
conditions precedent, the chief and foremost, without 
which any other favorable circumstances are compara- 
tively idle, is a considerable degree of neutralisation, ex- 
tending to virtually all national interests and pretensions, 
but more particularly to all material and commercial in- 
terests of the federated peoples; and, indispensably and 
especially, such neutralisation would have to extend to the 
nations from whom aggression is now apprehended, as, 
e, g., the German people. But such neutralisation could 
not conceivably reach the Fatherland unless that nation 
were made over in the image of democracy, since the 
Imperial State is, by force of the terms, a warlike and un- 
neutral power. This would seem to be the ostensibly con- 
cealed meaning of the allied governments in proclaiming 
that their aim is to break German militarism without doing 
harm to the German people. 

As touches the neutralisation of the democratically re- 
habilitated Fatherland, or in default of that, as touches 
the peace terms to be offered the Imperial government, the 
prime article among the stipulations would seem to be 
abolition of all trade discrimination against Germany or 

Eliminatipn of the Unfit 259 

by Germany against any other nationality. Such stipula- 
tion would, of course, cover all manner of trade discrim- 
ination, e. g., import, export and excise tariff, harbor and 
registry dues, subsidy, patent right, copyright, trade mark, 
tax exemption whether partial or exclusive, investment 
preferences at home and abroad, in short it would 
have to establish a thorough-going neutralisation of trade 
relations in the widest acceptation of the term, and to ap- 
ply in perpetuity. The like applies, of course, to all that 
fringe of subsidiary and outlying peoples on whom Im- 
perial Germany relies for much of its resources in any 
warlike enterprise. Such a move also disposes of the 
colonial question in a parenthesis, so far as regards any 
special bond of affiliation between the Empire, or the 
Fatherland, and any colonial possessions that are now 
thought desirable to the claimed. Under neutralisation, 
colonies would cease to be "colonial possessions," being 
necessarily included under the general abrogation of com- 
mercial discriminations, and also necessarily exempt from 
special taxation or specially favorable tax rates. 

Colonies there still would be, though it is not easy to 
imagine what would be the meaning of a "German Colony" 
in such a case. Colonies would be free communities, 
after the fashion of New Zealand or Australia, but with 
the further sterilisation of the bond between colony and 
mother country involved in the abolition of all appointive 
offices and all responsibility to the crown or the im- 
perial government. Now, there are no German colonies 
in this simpler British sense of the term, which implies 
nothing more than community of blood, institutions and 
language, together with that sense of solidarity between 
the colony and the mother country which this community 
of pedigree and institutions will necessarily bring; but 

260 On the Nature of Peace 

while there are today no German colonies, in the sense 
of the term so given, there is no reason to presume that 
no such German colonies would come into bearing under 
the conditions of this prospective regime of neutrality in- 
stalled by such a pacific league, when backed by the 
league's guarantee that no colony from the Fatherland 
will be exposed to the eventual risk of coming under the 
discretionary tutelage of the German Imperial establish- 
ment and so falling into a relation of step-childhood to 
the Imperial dynasty. 

As is well known, and as has by way of superflous com- 
monplace been set forth by a sometime Colonial Secretary 
of the Empire, the decisive reason for there being no 
German colonies in existence is the consistently impos- 
sible colonial policy of the German government, looking 
to the usufruct of the colonies by the government, and 
the fear of further arbitrary control and nepotic dis- 
crimination at the pleasure of the self-seeking dynastic 
establishment. It is only under Imperial rule that no 
German colony, in this modern sense of the term, is pos- 
sible; and only because Imperial rule does not admit of 
a free community being formed by colonists from the 
Fatherland; or of an ostensibly free community of that 
kind ever feeling secure from unsolicited interference with 
its affairs. 

The nearest approach to a German Colony, as con- 
trasted with a "Colonial Possession," hitherto have been 
the, very considerable, number of escaped German sub- 
jects who have settled in English-speaking or Latin-speak- 
ing countries, particularly in North and South America. 
And considering that the chief common trait among them 
is their successful evasion of the Imperial government's 
heavy hand, they show an admirable filial piety toward the 

Elimination of the Unfit 261 

Imperial establishment ; though troubled with no slightest 
regret at having escaped from the Imperial surveillance 
and no slightest inclination to return to the shelter of the 
Imperial tutelage. A colloquialism "hyphenate" has 
latterly grown up to meet the need of a term to designate 
these evasive and yet patriotic colonists. It is scarcely 
misleading to say that the German-American hyphenate, 
e. g., in so far as he runs true to form, is still a German 
subject with his heart, but he is an American citizen with 
his head. All of which goes to argue that if the Father- 
land were to fall into such a state of democratic tolerance 
that no recidivist need carry a defensive hypen to shield 
him from the importunate attentions of the Imperial 
government, German colonies would also come into bear- 
ing ; although, it is true, they would have no value to the 
German government. 

In the Imperial colonial policy colonies are conceived 
to stand to their Imperial guardian or master in a relation 
between that of a step-child and that of an indentured 
servant ; to be dealt with summarily and at discretion and, 
to be made use of without scruple. The like attitude to- 
ward colonies was once familiar matter-of-course with 
the British and Spanish statesmen. The British found 
the plan unprofitable, and also unworkable, and have given 
it up. The Spanish, having no political outlook but the 
dynastic one, could of course not see their way to re- 
linquish the only purpose of their colonial enterprise, ex- 
cept in reliquishing their colonial possessions. The Ger- 
man (Imperial) colonial policy is and will be necessarily 
after the Spanish pattern, and necessarily, too, with the 
Spanish results. 

Under the projected neutral scheme there would be no 
colonial policy, and of course, no inducement to the ac- 

262 On the Nature of Peace 

quisition of colonies, since there would be no profit to be 
derived, or to be fancied, in the case. But while no 
country, as a commonwealth, has any material interest in 
the acquisition or maintenance of colonies, it is other- 
wise as regards the dynastic interests of an Imperial 
government ; and it is also otherwise, at least in the belief 
of the interested parties, as regards special businessmen 
or business concerns who are in a position to gain some- 
thing by help of national discrimination in their favor. 
As regards the pecuniary interests of favored business- 
men or business concerns, and of investors favored by 
national discrimination in colonial relations, the case falls 
under the general caption of trade discrimination, and 
does not differ at all materially from such expedients as 
a protective tariff, a ship subsidy, or a bounty or exports. 
But as regards the warlike, that is to say dynastic, interest 
of an Imperial government the case stands somewhat dif- 

Colonial Possessions in such a case yield no material 
benefit to the country at large, but their possession is 
a serviceable plea for warlike preparations with which to 
retain possession of the colonies in the face of eventual- 
ities, and it is also a serviceable means of stirring the 
national pride and keeping alive a suitable spirit of patri- 
otic animosity. The material service actually to be de- 
rived from such possessions in the event of war is a point 
in doubt, with the probabilities apparently running against 
their being of any eventual net use. But there need be 
no question that such possessions, under the hand of any 
national establishment infected with imperial ambitions, 
are a fruitful source of diplomatic complications, excuses 
for armament, international grievances, and eventual ag- 
gression. A pacific league of neutrals can evidently not 

Elimination of the Unfit 263 

tolerate the retention of colonial possessions by any dynas- 
tic State that may be drawn into the league or under its 
jurisdiction, as, e. g., the German Empire in case it 
should be left on an Imperial footing. Whereas, in case 
the German peoples are thrown back on a democratic 
status, as neutralised commonwealths without a crown or 
a military establishment, the question of their colonial pos- 
sessions evidently falls vacant. 

As to the neutralisation of trade relations apart from 
the question of colonies, and as bears on the case of 
Germany under the projected jurisdiction of a pacific 
league of neutrals, the considerations to be taken account 
of are of much the same nature. As it would have to take 
effect, e. g., in the abolition of commercial and industrial 
discriminations between Germany and the pacific nations, 
such neutralisation would doubtless confer a lasting ma- 
terial benefit on the German people at large; and it is 
not easy to detect any loss or detriment to be derived 
from such a move so long as peace prevails. Protective, 
that is to say discriminating, export, import, or excise 
duties, harbor and registry dues, subsidies, tax exemptions 
and trade preferences, and all the like devices of interfer- 
ence with trade and industry, are unavoidably a hinder- 
ance to the material interests of any people on whom they 
are imposed or who impose these disabilities on them- 
selves. So that exemption from these things by a com- 
prehensive neutralisation of trade relations would im- 
mediately benefit all the nations concerned, in respect of 
their material well-being in times of peace. There is no 
exception and no abatement to be taken account of under 
this general statement, as is well known to all men who are 
conversant with these matters. 

264 On the Nature of Peace 

But it is otherwise as regards the dynastic interest in 
the case, and as regards any national interest in warlike 
enterprise. It is doubtless true that all restraint of trade 
between nations, and between classes or localities within 
the national frontiers, unavoidably acts to weaken and im- 
poverish the people on whose economic activities this re- 
straint is laid; and to the extent to which this effect is 
had it will also be true that the country which so is 
hindered in its work will have a less aggregate of re- 
sources to place at the disposal of its enterprising states- 
men for imperialist ends. But these restraints may yet be 
useful for dynastic, that is to say warlike, ends by mak- 
ing the country more nearly a "self-contained economic 
whole." A country becomes a "self-contained economic 
whole 5 * by mutilation, in cutting itself off from the in- 
dustrial system in which industrially it belongs, but in 
which it is unwilling nationally to hold its place. National 
frontiers are industrial barriers. But as a result of such 
mutilation of its industrial life such a country is better 
able it has been believed to bear the shock of severing 
its international trade relations entirely, as is likely to 
happen in case of war. 

In a large country, such as America or Russia, which 
comprises within its national boundaries very extensive 
and very varied resources and a widely distributed and 
diversified population, the mischief suffered from re- 
straints of trade that hinder industrial relations with the 
world at large will of course be proportionately lessened. 
Such a country comes nearer being a miniature industrial 
world; although none of the civilised nations, large or 
small, can carry on its ordinary industrial activities and its 
ordinary manner of life without drawing on foreign parts 
to some appreciable extent. But a country of small terri- 

Elimination of the Unfit 265 

tonal extent and of somewhat narrowly restricted natural 
resources, as, e. g., Germany or France, can even by the 
most drastic measures of restaint and mutilation achieve 
only a very mediocre degree of industrial isolation and 
"self-sufficiency," as has, e. g., appeared in the present 
war. But in all cases, though in varying measure, the 
mitigated isolation so enforced by these restraints 
will in their degree impair the country's industrial efficien- 
cy and lower the people's material well-being ; yet, if the 
restrictions are shrewdly applied this partial isolation and 
partial "self-sufficiency" will go some way toward prepar- 
ing the nation for the more thorough isolation that fol- 
lows on the outbreak of hostilities. 

The present plight of the German people under war con- 
ditions may serve to show how nearly that end may be 
attained, and yet how inadequate even the most unreserved 
measures of industrial isolation must be in face of the 
fact that the modern state of the industrial arts necessarily 
draws on the collective resources of the world at large. 
It may well be doubted, on an impartial view, if the muti- 
lation of the country's industrial system by such measures 
of isolation does not after all rather weaken the nation 
even for warlike ends ; but then, the discretionary authori- 
ties in the dynastic States are always, and it may be pre- 
sumed necessarily, hampered with obsolete theories hand- 
ed down from that cameralistic age, when the little princes 
of the Fatherland were making dynastic history. So, e. 
g., the current, nineteenth and twentieth century, economic 
policy of the Prussian-Imperial statesmen is still drawn 
on lines within which Frederick II, called the Great, would 
have felt well at home. 

Like other preparation for hostilities this reduction of 
the country to the status of a self-contained economic or- 

266 On the Nature of Peace ^ 

ganisation is costly, but like other preparation for hostili- 
ties it also puts the nation in a position of greater readiness 
to break off friendly relations with its neighbors. It is a 
war measure, commonly spoken for by its advocates as a 
measure of self-defense; but whatever the merits of the 
self-defenders* contention, this measure is a war measure. 
As such it can reasonably claim no hearing in the coun- 
sels of a pacific league of neutrals, whose purpose it is to 
make war impracticable. Particularly can there be no 
reasonable question of admitting a policy of trade discrim- 
ination and isolation on the part of a nation which has, for 
purposes of warlike aggression, pursued such a policy in 
the past, and which it is the immediate purpose of the 
league to bind over to keep the peace. 

There has been a volume of loose talk spent on the 
justice and expediency of boycotting the trade of the 
peoples of the Empire after the return of peace, as a pen- 
alty and as a preventive measure designed to retard their 
recovery of strength with which to enter on a further war- 
like enterprise. Such a measure would necessarily be 
somewhat futile; since "Business is business," after all, 
and the practical limitations imposed on an unprofitable 
boycott by the moral necessity to buy cheap and sell dear 
that rests on all businessmen would surreptitiously 
mitigate it to the point of negligibility. It is inconceivable 
or it would be inconceivable in the absence of imbecile 
politicians and self-seeking businessmen that measures 
looking to the trade isolation of any one of these countries 
could be entertained as a point of policy to be pursued 
by a league of neutrals. And it is only in so far as patri- 
otic jealously and vindictive sentiments are allowed to dis- 
place the aspiration for peace and security, that such 
measures can claim consideration. Considered as a pen- 

Elimination of the Unfit 267 

alty to be imposed on the erring nations who set this war- 
like adventure afoot, it should be sufficiently plain that 
such a measure as a trade boycott could not touch the 
chief offenders, or even their responsible abettors. It 
would, rather, play into the hands of the militarist in- 
terests by keeping alive the spirit of national jealously and 
international hatred, out of which wars arise and without 
which warlike enterprise might hopefully be expected to 
disappear out of the scheme of human intercourse. The 
punishment would fall, as all economic burdens and dis- 
abilities must always fall, on the common man, the under- 
lying population. 

The chief relation of this common run, this underlying 
population of German subjects, to the inception and 
pursuit of this Imperial warlike enterprise, is comprised 
in the fact that they are an underlying population of sub- 
jects, held in usufruct by the Imperial establishment and 
employed at will. It is true, they have lent themselves 
unreservedly to the uses for which the dynasty has use 
for them, and they have entered enthusiastically into the 
warlike adventure set afoot by the dynastic statesmen; 
but that they have done so is their misfortune rather than 
their fault. By use and wont and indoctrination they have 
for long been unremittingly, and helplessly, disciplined 
into a spirit of dynastic loyalty, national animosity and 
servile abnegation ; until it would be nothing better than a 
pathetic inversion of all the equities of the case to visit 
the transgressions of their masters upon the common run; 
whose fault lies, after all, in their being an underlying 
population of subjects, who have not had a chance to 
reach that spiritual level on which they could properly 
be held accountable for the uses to which they are turned. 
It is true, men are ordinarily punished for their misfor- 

268 On the Nature of Peace 

tunes ; but the warlike enterprise of the Imperial dynasty 
has already brought what might fairly be rated as a good 
measure of punishment on this underlying populace, 
whose chief fault and chief misfortune lies in an habitual 
servile abnegation of those traits of initiative and discre- 
tion in man that constitute him an agent susceptible of re- 
sponsibility or retribution. 

It would be all the more of a pathetic mockery to visit 
the transgressions of their masters on these victims of 
circumstance and dynastic mendacity, since the conven- 
tionalities of international equity will scarcely permit the 
high responsible parties in the case to be chastened with 
any penalty harsher than a well-mannered figure of speech. 
To serve as a deterrent, the penalty must strike the point 
where vests the discretion; but servile use and wont is 
still too well intact in these premises to let any penalty 
touch the guilty core of a profligate dynasty. Under the 
wear and tear of continued war and its incident continued 
vulgarisation of the directorate and responsible staff 
among the pacific allies, the conventional respect of per- 
sons is likely to suffer appreciable dilapidation ; but there 
need be no apprehension of such a loss of decent respect 
for personages as would compromise the creature com- 
forts of that high syndicate of personages on whose initia- 
tive the Fatherland entered upon this enterprise in domin- 

Bygone shortcomings and transgressions can have no 
reasonable place in the arrangements by which a pacific 
league of neutrals designs to keep the peace. Neither 
can bygone prerogatives and precedents of magnificence 
and of mastery, except in so far as they unavoidably must 
come into play through the inability of men to divest them- 
selves of their ingrained preconceptions, by virtue of which 

Elimination of the Unfit 269 

a Hohenzollern or a Hapsburger is something more for- 
midable and more to be considered than a recruiting ser- 
geant or a purveyor of light literature. The league can 
do its work of pacification only by elaborately forgetting 
differences and discrepancies of the kind that give rise 
to international grievances. Which is the same as saying 
that the neutralisation of national discriminations and 
pretensions will have to go all the way, if it is to serve. 
But this implies, as broadly as need be, that the pacific 
nations who make the league and provisionally administer 
its articles of agreement and jurisdiction, can not exempt 
themselves from anyof the leveling measures of neutral- 
isation to which the dynastic suspects among them are to 
be subject. It would mean a relinquishment of all those 
undemocratic institutional survivals out of which inter- 
national grievances are wont to arise. As a certain Danish 
adage would have it, the neutrals of the league must all 
be shorn over the same comb. 

What is to be shorn over this one comb of neutralisation 
and democracy is all those who go into the pacific league 
of neutrals and all who come under its jurisdiction, 
whether of their own choice or by the necessities of the 
case. It is of the substance of the case that those peoples 
who have been employed in the campaigns of the German- 
Imperial coalition are to come in on terms of impartial 
equality with those who have held the ground against 
them; to come under the jurisdiction, and prospectively 
into the copartnery, of the league of neutrals all on the 
presumption that the Imperial coalition will be brought to 
make peace on terms of unconditional surrender. 

Let it not seem presumptuous to venture on a recital of 
summary specifications intended to indicate the nature of 

270 On the Nature of Peace 

those concrete measures which would logically be com- 
prised in a scheme of pacification carried out with such 
a view to impartial equality among the peoples who are 
to make up the projected league. There is a significant 
turn of expression that recurs habitually in the formula- 
tion of terms put forth by the spokesmen of the Entente 
belligerents, where it is insisted that hostilities are carried 
on not against the German people or the other peoples 
associated with them, but only against the Imperial estab- 
lishments and their culpable aids and abettors in the enter- 
prise. So it is further insisted that there is no intention 
to bring pains and penalties on these peoples, who so have 
been made use of by their masters, but only on the culp- 
able master class whose tools these peoples have been. 
And later, just now (January 1917), and from a respon- 
sible and disinterested spokesman for the pacific league, 
there comes the declaration that a lasting peace at the 
hands of such a league can be grounded only in a present 
"peace without victory." 

The mutual congruity of these two declarations need 
not imply collusion, but they are none the less comple- 
mentary propositions and they are none the less indica- 
tive of a common trend of convictions among the men 
who are best able to speak for those pacific nations that 
are looked to as the mainstay of the prospective league. 
They both converge to the point that the objective to be 
achieved is not victory for the Entente belligerents but 
defeat for the German-Imperial coalition; that the peo- 
ples underlying the defeated governments are not to be 
dealt with as vanquished enemies but as fellows in un- 
deserved misfortune brought on by their culpable masters; 
and that no advantage is designed to be taken of these 
peoples, and no gratuitous hardship to be imposed on them. 

Elimination of the Unfit 271 

Their masters are evidently to be put away, not as defeated 
antagonists but as a public nuisance to be provided against 
as may seem expedient for the peace and security of those 
nations whom they have been molesting. 

Taking this position as outlined, it should not be ex- 
tremely difficult to forecast the general line of procedure 
which it would logically demand, barring irrelevant re- 
gard for precedents and overheated resentment, and pro- 
vided that the makers of these peace terms have a free 
hand and go to their work with an eye single to the estab- 
lishment of an enduring peace. The case of Germany 
would be typical of all the rest; and the main items of 
the bill in this case would seem logically to run somewhat 
as follows: 

(1) The definitive elimination of the Imperial establish- 
ment, together with the monarchical establishments of the 
several states of the Empire and the privileged classes; 

(2) Removal or destruction of all warlike equipment, 
military and naval, defensive and offensive ; 

(3) Cancelment of the public debt, of the Empire and 
of its members creditors of the Empire being accounted 
accessory to the culpable enterprise of the Imperial gov- 
ernment ; 

(4) Confiscation of such industrial equipment and re- 
sources as have contributed to the carrying on of the war, 
as being also accessory ; 

(5) Assumption by the league at large of all debts in- 
curred, by the Entente belligerents or by neutrals, for 
the prosecution or by reason of the war, and distribution 
of the obligation so assumed, impartially among the mem- 
bers of the league, including the peoples of the defeated 
nations ; 

272 On the Nature of Peace 

(6) Indemnification for all injury done to civilians in 
the invaded territories; the means for such indemnifi- 
cation to be procured by confiscation of all estates in the 
defeated countries exceeding a certain very modest maxi- 
mum, calculated on the average of property owned, say, 
by the poorer three-fourths of the population, the kept 
classes being properly accounted accessory to the Empire's 
culpable enterprise. 

The proposition to let the war debt be shared by all 
members of the league on a footing of impartial equality 
may seem novel, and perhaps extravagant. But all pro- 
jects put forth for safeguarding the world's peace by a 
compact among the pacific nations run on the patent, 
though often tacit, avowal that the Entente belligerents 
are spending their substance and pledging their credit for 
the common cause. Among the Americans, the chief of 
the neutral nations, this is coming to be recognised more 
and more overtly. So that, in this instance at least, no 
insurmountable reluctance to take over their due share of 
the common burden should fairly be looked for, particu- 
larly when it appears that the projected league, if it is 
organised on a footing of neutrality, will relieve the re- 
public of virtually all outlay for their own defense. 

Of course, there is, in all this, no temerarious intention 
to offer advice as to what should be done by those who 
have it to do, or even to sketch the necessary course which 
events are bound to take. As has been remarked in an- 
other passage, that would have to be a work of prophesy 
or of effrontery, both of which, it is hoped, lie equally 
beyond the horizon of this inquiry; which is occupied 
with the question of what conditions will logically have 
to be met in order to an enduring peace, not what will 
be the nature and outcome of negotiations entered into 

Elimination of the Unfit 273 

by astute delegates pursuing the special advantage, each 
of his own nation. And yet the peremptory need of reach- 
ing some practicable arrangement whereby the peace may 
be kept, goes to say that even the most astute negotiations 
will in some degree be controlled by that need, and may 
reasonably be expected to make some approach to the 
simple and obvious requirements of the situation. 

Therefore the argument returns to the United Kingdom 
and the probable limit of tolerance of that people, in re- 
spect of what they are likely to insist on as a necessary 
measure of democratisation in the nations of the second 
part, and what measure of national abnegation they are 
likely to accomodate themselves to. The United King- 
dom is indispensable to the formation of a pacific league 
of neutrals. And the British terms of adhesion, or rather 
of initiation of such a league, therefore, will have to con- 
stitute the core of the structure, on which details may be 
adjusted and to which concessive adjustments will have to 
be made by all the rest. This is not saying that the pro- 
jected league must or will be dominated by the United 
Kingdom or administered in the British interest. Indeed, 
it can not well be made to serve British particular inter- 
ests in any appreciable degree, except at the cost of defeat 
to its main purpose; since the purposes of an enduring 
peace can be served only by an effectual neutralisation of 
national claims and interests. But it would mean that the 
neutralisation of national interests and discriminations to 
be effected would have to be drawn on lines acceptable to 
British taste in these matters, and would have to go ap- 
proximately so far as would be dictated by the British 
notions of what is expedient, and not much farther. The 
pacific league of neutrals would have much of a British 

274 On the Nature of Peace 

air, but "British" in this connection is to be taken as 
connoting the English-speaking countries rather than as 
applying ta the United Kingdom alone ; since the entrance 
of the British into the league would involve the entrance 
of the British colonies, and, indeed, of the American re- 
public as well. 

The temper and outlook of this British community, 
therefore, becomes a matter of paramount importance in 
any attempted analysis of the situation resulting after the 
war, or of any prospective course of' conduct to be 
entered on by the pacific nations. And the question 
touches not so much the temper and preconceptions of the 
British community as known in recent history, but rather 
as it is likely to be modified by the war experience. So 
that the practicability of a neutral league comes to turn, 
in great measure, on the effect which this war experience 
is having on the habits of thought of the British people, or 
on that section of the British population which will make 
up the effectual majority when the war closes. The 
grave interest that attaches to this question must serve as 
justification for pursuing it farther, even though there can 
be no promise of a definite or confident answer to be 
found beforehand. 

Certain general assertions may be made with some con- 
fidence. The experiences of the war, particularly among 
the immediate participants and among their immediate 
domestic connections a large and increasing proportion 
of the people at large are plainly impressing on them the 
uselessness and hardship of such a war. There can be no 
question but they are reaching a conviction that a war of 
this modern kind and scale is a thing to be avoided if 
possible. They are, no doubt, willing to go to very con- 
siderable lengths to make a repetition of it impossible, and 

Elimination of the Unfit 275 

they may reasonably be expected to go farther along that 
line before peace returns. But the lengths to which they 
are ready to go may be in the way of concessions, or in 
the way of contest and compulsion. There need be no 
doubt but a profound and vindictive resentment runs 
through the British community, and there is no reason to 
apprehend that this will be dissipated in the course of 
further hostilities; although it should fairly be expected 
to lose something of its earlier exuberant malevolence and 
indiscrimination, more particularly if hostilities continue 
for some time. It is not too much to expect, that this 
popular temper of resentment will demand something very 
tangible in the way of summary vengeance on those who 
have brought the hardships of war upon the nation. 

The manner of retribution which would meet the pop- 
ular demand for "justice" to be done on the enemy is 
likely to be affected by the fortunes of war, as also the in- 
cidence of it. Should the governmental establishment and 
the discretion still vest in the gentlemanly classes at the 
close of hostilities, the retribution is likely to take the 
accustomed gentlemanly shape of pecuniary burdens im- 
posed on the people of the defeated country, together with 
diplomatically specified surrender of territorial and colon- 
ial possessions, and the like ; such as to leave the de facto 
enemy courteously on one side, and to yield something in 
the way of pecuniary benefit to the gentlemen-investors in 
charge, and something more in the way of new emolu- 
ments of office to the office-holding class included in the 
same order of gentlemen. The retribution in the case 
would manifestly fall on the underlying population in the 
defeated country, without seriously touching the responsi- 
ble parties, and would leave the defeated nation with a 
new grievance to nourish its patriotic animosity and with 

276 On the Nature of Peace 

a new incentive to a policy of watchful waiting for a 
chance of retaliation. 

But it is to be noted that under the stress of the war 
there is going forward in the British community a pro- 
gressive displacement of gentlemanly standards and official 
procedure by standards and procedure of a visibly under- 
bred character, a weakening of the hold of the gentleman- 
ly classes on the control of affairs and, a weakening of 
the hold which the sacred rights of property, investment 
and privilege have long had over the imagination of the 
British people. Should hostilities continue, and should 
the exigencies of the war situation continue to keep the 
futility of these sacred rights, as well as the fatuity of then- 
possessors, in the public eye, after the same fashion as 
hitherto, it would not be altogether unreasonable to ex- 
pect that the discretion would pass into the hands of the 
underbred, or into the hands of men immediately and ur- 
gently accountable to the underbred. In such a case, and 
with a constantly growing popular realisation that the 
directorate and responsible enemy in the war is the Im- 
perial dynasty and its pedigreed aids and abettors, it is 
conceivable that the popular resentment would converge so 
effectually on these responsible instigators and directors 
of misfortune as to bring the incidence of the required 
retribution effectually to bear on them. The outcome 
might, not inconceivably, be the virtual erasure of the 
Imperial dynasty, together with the pedigreed-class rule 
on which it rests and the apparatus of irresponsible coer- 
cion through which it works, in the Fatherland and in its 
subsidiaries and dependencies. 

With a sufficiently urgent realisation of their need of 
peace and security, and with a realisation also that the 
way to avoid war is to avoid the ways and means of in- 

Elimination of the Unfit 277 

ternational jealousy and of the national discriminations 
out of which international jealousy grows, it is conceiv- 
able that a government which should reflect the British 
temper and the British hopes might go so far in insisting 
on a neutralisation of the peoples of the Fatherland as 
would leave them without the dynastic apparatus with 
which warlike enterprise is "set afoot, and so leave them 
also perforce in a pacific frame of mind. In time, in the 
absence of their dearly beloved leavings of feudalism, an 
enforced reliance on their own discretion and initiative, 
and an enforced respite from the rant and prance of war- 
like swagger, would reasonably be expected to grow into a 
popular habit. The German people are by no means less 
capable of tolerance and neighbourly decorum than their 
British or Scandinavian neighbours of the same blood, 
if they can only be left to their own devices, untroubled 
by the maggoty conceit of national domination. 

There is no intention herewith to express an expectation 
that this out-and-out neutralisation of the Fatherland's 
international relations and of its dynastic government will 
come to pass on the return of peace, or that the German 
people will, as a precaution against recurrent Imperial 
rabies, be organised on a democratic pattern by constraint 
of the pacific nations of the league. The point is only that 
this measure of neutralisation appears to be the necessary 
condition, in the absence of which no such neutral league 
can succeed, and that so long as the war goes on there is 
something of a chance that the British community may 
in time reach a frame of mind combining such settled de- 
termination to safeguard the peace at all costs, with such a 
degree of disregard for outworn conventions, that their 
spokesmen in the negotiations may push the neutralisa- 
tion of these peoples to that length. 

278 On the Nature of Peace 

The achievement of such an outcome would evidently 
take time as well as harsh experience, more time and 
harsher experience, perhaps, than one likes to contem- 

Most men, therefore, would scarcely rate the chance of 
such an outcome at all high. And yet it is to be called to 
mind that the war has lasted long and the effect of its 
demands and its experience has already gone far, and 
that the longer it lasts the greater are the chances of its 
prolongation and of its continued hardships, at least to 
the extent that with every month of war that passes the 
prospect of the allied nations making peace on any terms 
short of unconditional surrender grows less. And un- 
conditional surrender is the first step in the direction of 
an unconditional dispossession of the Imperial establish- 
ment and its war prophets, depending primarily on the 
state of mind of the British people at the time. And 
however unlikely, it is also always possible, as some con- 
tend, that in the course of further war experience the 
common man in the Fatherland may come to reflect on the 
use and value of the Imperial establishment, with the re- 
sult of discarding and disowning it and all its works. 
Such an expectation would doubtless underrate the force 
of ancient habit, and would also involve a misapprehension 
of the psychological incidence of a warlike experience. 
The German people have substantially none of those pre- 
conceptions of independence and self-direction to go on, 
in the absence of which an effectual revulsion against 
dynastic rule can not come to pass. 

Embedded in the common sense of the British popula- 
tion at large is a certain large and somewhat sullen sense 
of fair dealing. In this they are not greatly different from 
their neighbours, if at all, except that the body of common 

Elimination of the Unfit 279 

sense in which this British sense of fair dealing lies em- 
bedded is a maturer fashion of common sense than that 
which serves to guide the workday life of many of their 
neighbours. And the maturity in question appears to be 
chiefly a matter of their having unlearned, divested them- 
selves of, or been by force of disuse divested of, an ex- 
ceptionally large proportion of that burden of untoward 
conceits which western Europe, and more particularly 
middle Europe, at large has carried over from the Middle 
Ages. They have had time and occasion to forget more 
of what the exigencies of modern life makes it expedient 
to have forgotten. And yet they are reputed slow, con- 
servative. But they have been well placed for losing 
much of what would be well lost. 

Among other things, their preconception of national 
animosity is not secure, in the absence of provocation. 
They are now again in a position to learn to do without 
some of the useless legacy out of the past, useless, 
that is, for life as it runs today, however it may be rated 
in the setting in which it was all placed in that past out 
of which it has come. And the question is whether now, 
under the pressure of exigencies that make for a dis- 
establishment of much cumbersome inherited apparatus 
for doing what need not be done, they will be ruled by 
their sense of expediency and of fair dealing to the ex- 
tent of cancelling out of their own scheme of life so 
much of this legacy of conventional preconceptions as has 
now come visibly to hinder their own material well-being, 
and at the same time to defeat that peace and security for 
which they have shown themselves willing to fight. It is, 
of course, a simpler matter to fight than it is to put away 
a preconceived, even if it is a bootless, superstition ; as, 
e. g., the prestige of hereditary wealth, hereditary gentil- 

280 On the Nature of Peace 

ity, national vainglory, and perhaps especially national 
hatred. But if the school is hard enough and the dis- 
cipline protracted enough there is no reason in the nature 
of things why the common run of the British people should 
not unlearn these futilities that once were the substance 
of things under an older and outworn order. They have 
already shown their capacity for divesting themselves of 
outworn institutional bonds, in discarding the main sub- 
stance of dynastic rule ; and when they now come to face 
the exigencies of this new situation it should cause no 
great surprise if they are able to see their way to do what 
further is necessary to meet these exigencies. 

At the hands of this British commonwealth the new 
situation requires the putting away of the German Imper- 
ial establishment and the military caste ; the reduction of 
the German peoples to a footing of unreserved democracy 
with sufficient guarantees against national trade discrimi- 
nations; surrender of all British tutelage over outlying 
possessions, except what may go to guarantee their local 
autonomy ; cancelment of all extra-territorial pretensions 
of the several nations entering into the league ; neutral- 
isation of the several national establishments, to comprise 
virtual disarmament, as well as cancelment of all restric- 
tions on trade and of all national defense of extra-terri- 
torial pecuniary claims and interests on the part of in- 
dividual citizens. The naval control of the seas will best 
be left in British hands. No people has a graver or more 
immediate interest in the freedom and security of the 
sea-borne trade; and the United Kingdom has shown 
that it is to be trusted in that matter. And then it may 
well be that neither the national pride nor the apprehen- 
sions of the British people would allow them to surren- 

Elimination of the Unfit 281 

der it ; whereas, if the league is to be formed it will have 
to be on terms to which the British people are willing to 
adhere. A certain provision of armed force will also be 
needed to keep the governments of unneutral nations in 
check, and for the purpose in hand all effectively mon- 
archical countries are to be counted as congenitally un- 
neutral, whatever their formal professions and whether 
they are members of the league or not. Here again it 
will probably appear that the people of the United King- 
dom, and of the English-speaking countries at large, will 
not consent to this armed force and its discretionary use 
passing out of British hands, or rather out of French- 
British hands ; and here again the practical decision will 
have to wait on the choice of the British people, all the 
more because the British community has no longer an 
interest, real or fancied, in the coercive use of this force 
for their own particular ends. No other power is to be 
trusted, except France, and France is less well placed 
for the purpose and would assuredly also not covet so 
invidious an honor and so thankless an office. 

The theory, or the logical necessities, of such a pa- 
cific league of neutral nations is simple enough, in its 
elements. War is to be avoided by a policy of avoidance. 
Which signifies that the means and the motives to war- 
like enterprise and warlike provocation are to be 
put away, so far as may be. If what may be, in this 
respect, does npt come up to the requirements of the 
case, the experiment, of course, will fail. The prelim- 
inary requirement, elimination of the one formidable 
dynastic State in Europe, has been spoken of. Its coun- 
terpart in the Far East will cease to be formidable on 
the decease of its natural ally in Central Europe, in so 

282 On the Nature of Peace 

far as touches the case of such a projected league. The 
ever increasingly dubious empire of the Czar would ap- 
pear to fall in the same category. So that the pacific 
league's fortunes would seem to turn on what may be 
called its domestic or internal arrangements. 

Now, the means of warlike enterprise, as well as of 
unadvised embroilment, is always in the last analysis the 
patriotic spirit of the nation. Given this patriotic spirit 
in sufficient measure, both the material equipment and the 
provocation to hostilities will easily be found. It should 
accordingly appear to be the first care of such a pacific 
league to reduce the sources of patriotic incitement to the 
practicable minimum. This can be done, in such measure 
as it can be done at all, by neutralisation of national pre- 
tensions. The finished outcome in this respect, such as 
would assure perpetual peace among the peoples con- 
cerned, would of course be an unconditional neutralisation 
of citizenship, as has already been indicated before. The 
question which, in effect, the spokesmen for a pacific 
league have to face is as to how nearly that outcome can 
be brought to pass. The rest of what they may under- 
take, or may come to by way of compromise and stipula- 
tion, is relatively immaterial and of relatively transient 

A neutralisation of citizenship has of course been afloat 
in a somewhat loose way in the projects of socialistic and 
other "undesirable" agitators, but nothing much has come 
of it. Nor have specific projects for its realisation been 
set afoot. That anything conclusive along that line could 
now be reached would seem extremely doubtful, in view 
of the ardent patriotic temper of all these peoples, height- 
ened just now by the experience of war. Still, an unde- 
signed and unguided drift in that direction has been visible 

Elimination of the Unfit 283 

in all those nations that are accounted the vanguard among 
modern civilised peoples, ever since the dynastic rule 
among them began to be displaced by a growth of "free" 
institutions, that is to say institutions resting on an ac- 
cepted ground of insubordination and free initiative. 

The patriotism of these peoples, or their national spirit, 
is after all and at the best an attenuated and imperson- 
alised remnant of dynastic loyalty, and it amounts after 
all, in effect, to nothing much else than a residual cur- 
tailment or partial atrophy of that democratic habit of 
mind that embodies itself in the formula: Live and let 
live. It is, no doubt, both an ancient and a very meri- 
torious habit. It is easily acquired and hard to put away. 
The patriotic spirit and the national life (prestige) on 
which it centers are the subject of untiring eulogy; but 
hitherto its encomiasts have shown no cause and put for- 
ward no claim to believe that it all is of any slightest use 
for any purpose that does not take it and its paramount 
merit for granted. It is doubtless a very meritorious 
habit; at least so they all say. But under the circum- 
stances of modern civilised life it is fruitful of no other 
net material result than damage and discomfort. Still it. 
is virtually ubiquitous among civilised men, and in an 
admirable state of repair; and for the calculable future 
it is doubtless to be counted in as an enduring obstacle 
to a conclusive peace, a constant source of anxiety and 
unremitting care. 

The motives that work out through this national spirit, 
by use of this patriotic ardor, fall under two heads : dy- 
nastic ambition, and business enterprise. The two cate- 
gories have the common trait that neither the one nor 
the other comprises anything that is of the slightest ma- 
terial benefit to the community at large; but both have 

284 On the Nature of Peace 

at the same time a high prestige value in the conventional 
esteem of modern men. The relation of dynastic ambition 
to warlike enterprise, and the uses of that usufruct of 
the nation's resources and man-power which the nation's 
patriotism places at the disposal of the dynastic estab- 
lishment, have already been spoken of at length above, 
perhaps at excessive length, in the recurrent discussion of 
the dynastic State and its quest of dominion for domin- 
ion's sake. What measures are necessary to be taken as 
regards the formidable dynastic States that threaten the 
peace, have also been outlined, perhaps with excessive 

But it remains to call attention to that mitigated form 
of dynastic rule called a constitutional monarchy. In- 
stances of such a constitutional monarchy, designed to 
conserve the well-beloved abuses of dynastic rule under 
a cover of democratic formalities, or to bring in effectual 
democratic insubordination under cover of the ancient 
dignities of an outworn monarchical system, the char- 
acterisation may run either way according to the fancy 
of the speaker, and to much the same practical effect in 
either case, instances illustrative of this compromise 
monarchy at work today are to be had, as felicitously as 
anywhere, in the Balkan states; perhaps the case of 
Greece will be especially instructive. At the other, and 
far; end of the line will be found such other typical in- 
stances as the British, the Dutch, or, in pathetic and droll 
miniature, the Norwegian. 

There is, of course, a wide interval between the gro- 
tesque effrontery that wears the Hellenic crown and the 
undeviatingly decorous self-effacement of the Dutch sov- 
ereign; and yet there is something of a common com- 
plexion runs through the whole range of establishments, 

Eliminatipn of the Unfit 285 

all the way from the quasi-dynastic to the pseudo-dynastic. 
For reasons unavoidable and persistent, though not in- 
scribed in the constituent law, the governmental establish- 
ment associated with such a royal concern will be made 
up of persons drawn from the kept classes, the nobility 
or lesser gentlefolk, and will be imbued with the spirit 
of these "better" classes rather than that of the common 

With what may be uncanny shrewdness, or perhaps 
mere tropismatic response to the unreasoned stimulus 
of a "consciousness of kind," the British government 
habitually a syndicate of gentlefolk has uniformly in- 
sisted on the installation of a constitutional monarchy at 
the formation of every new national organisation in which 
that government has had a discretionary voice. And the 
many and various constitutional governments so estab- 
lished, commonly under British auspices in some degree, 
have invariably run true to form, in some appreciable 
degree. They may be quasi-dynastic or pseudo-dynastic, 
but at this nearest approach to democracy they always, 
and unavoidably, include at least a circumlocution office 
of gentlefolk, in the way of a ministry and court estab- 
lishment, whose place in the economy of the nation's 
affairs it is to adapt the run of these affairs to the needs 
of the kept classes. 

There need be no imputation of sinister designs to these 
gentlefolk, who so are elected by force of circumstances 
to guard and guide the nation s interests. As things go, 
it will doubtless commonly be found that they are as well- 
intentioned as need be. But a well-meaning gentleman 
of good antecedents means well in a gentlemanly way 
and in the light of good antecedents. Which comes un- 
avoidably to an effectual bias in favor of those interests 

286 On the Nature of Peace 

which honorable gentlemen of good antecedents have at 
heart. And among these interests are the interests of 
the kept classes, as contrasted with that common run of 
the population from which their keep is drawn. 

Under the auspices, even if they are only the histrionic 
and decorative auspices, of so decorous an article of in- 
stitutional furniture as royalty, it follows of logical neces- 
sity that the personnel of the effectual government must 
also be drawn from the better classes, whose place and 
station and high repute will make their association with 
the First Gentleman of the Realm not too insufferably 
incongruous. And then, the popular habit of looking up 
to this First Gentleman with that deference that royalty 
commands, also conduces materially to the attendant 
habitual attitude of deference to gentility more at large. 

Even in so democratic a country, and with so exani- 
mate a crown as is to be found in the United Kingdom, 
the royal establishment visibly, and doubtless very mate- 
rially, conduces to the continued tenure of the effectual 
government by representatives of the kept classes ; and 
it therefore counts with large effect toward the retardation 
of the country's further move in the direction of demo- 
cratic insubordination and direct participation in the di- 
rection of affairs by the underbred, who finally pay the 
cost. And on the other hand, even so moderately royal 
an establishment as the Norwegian has apparently a sen- 
sible effect in the way of gathering the reins somewhat 
into the hands of the better classes, under circumstances 
of such meagerness as might be expected to preclude 
anything like a "better" class, in the conventional accepta- 
tion of that term. It would appear that even the extreme 
of pseudo-dynastic royalty, sterilised to the last degree, 
is something of an effectual hindrance to democratic rule,' 

Elimination of the Unfit 287 

and in so far also a hindrance to the further continued 
neutralisation of nationalist pretensions, as also an ef- 
fectual furtherance of upper-class rule for upper-class 

Now, a government by well-meaning gentlemen-invest- 
ors will, at the nearest, come no nearer representing the 
material needs and interests of the common run than a 
parable comes to representing the concrete facts which 
it hopes to illuminate. And as bears immediately on 
the point in hand, these gentlemanly administrators of the 
nation's affairs who so cluster about the throne, vacant 
though it may be of all but the bodily presence of ma- 
jesty, are after all gentlemen, with a gentlemanly sense 
of punctilio touching the large proprieties and courtesies 
of political life. The national honor is a matter of punc- 
tilio, always; and out of the formal exigencies of the 
national honor arise grievances to be redressed ; and it is 
grievances of this character that commonly afford the 
formal ground of a breach of the peace. An appeal on 
patriotic grounds of wounded national pride, to the com- 
mon run who have no trained sense of punctilio, by the 
gentlemanly responsible class who have such a sense, 
backed by assurances that the national prestige or the 
national interests are at stake, will commonly bring a 
suitable response. It is scarcely necessary that the com- 
mon run should know just what the stir is about, so long 
as they are informed by their trusted betters that there 
is a grievance to redress. In effect, it results that the 
democratic nation's affairs are administered by a syndi- 
cate composed of the least democratic class in the popu- 

Excepting what is to be excepted, it will commonly 
hold true today that these gentlemanly governments are 

288 On the Nature of Peace 

conducted in a commendably clean and upright fashion, 
with a conscious rectitude and a benevolent intention. 
But they are after all, in effect, class governments, and 
they unavoidably carry the bias of their class. The gentle- 
manly officials and law-givers come, in the main, from the 
kept classes, whose living comes to them in the way of 
income from investments, at home or in foreign parts, or 
from an equivalent source of accumulated wealth or offi- 
cial emolument. The bias resulting from this state of the 
case need not be of an intolerable character in order to 
bring its modicum of mischief into the national policy, 
as regards amicable relations with other nationalities. A 
slight bias running on a ground of conscious right and 
unbroken usage may go far. So, e. g., anyone of these 
gentlemanly governments is within its legitimate rights, 
or rather within its imperative duty, in defending the for- 
eign investments of its citizens and enforcing due payment 
of its citizens 1 claims to income or principal of such prop- 
erty as they may hold in foreign parts ; and it is within 
its ordinary lines of duty in making use of the nation's 
resources that is to say of the common man and his 
means of livelihood in enforcing such claims held by 
the investing classes. The community at large has no 
interest in the enforcement of such claims ; it is evidently 
a class interest, and as evidently protected by a code of 
rights, duties and procedure that has grown out of a class 
bias, at the cost of the community at large. 

This bias favoring the interests of invested wealth may 
also, and indeed it commonly does, take the aggressive 
form of aggressively forwarding enterprise in invest- 
ment abroad, particularly in commercially backward coun- 
tries abroad, by extension of the national jurisdiction 
and the active countenancing of concessions in foreign 

Elimination of the Unfit 289 

parts, by subventions, oi^by creation of offices to bring 
suitable emoluments to the younger sons of deserving 
families. The protective tariffs to which recourse is 
sometimes had, are of the same general nature and pur- 
pose. Of course, it is in this latter, aggressive or excur- 
sive, issue of the well-to-do bias in favor of investment 
and invested wealth that its most pernicious effect on 
international relations is traceable. 

Free income, that is to say income not dependent on 
personal merit or exertion of any kind, is the breath of 
life to the kept classes ; and as a corollary of the "First 
Law of Nature," therefore, the invested wealth which 
gives a legally equitable claim to such income has in their 
eyes all the sanctity that can be given by Natural Right. 
Investment often spoken of euphemistically as "saving" 
is consequently a meritorious act, conceived to be very 
serviceable to the community at large, and properly to be 
furthered by all available means. Invested wealth is so 
much added to the aggregate means at the community's 
disposal, it is believed. Of course, in point of fact, in- 
come from investment in the hands of these gentlefolk 
is a means of tracelessly consuming that much of the 
community's yearly product ; but to the kept classes, who 
see the matter from the point of view of the recipient, 
the matter does not present itself in that light. To them 
it is the breath of Jife. Like other honorable men they 
are faithful to their bread ; and by authentic tradition the 
common man, in whose disciplined preconceptions the kept 
classes are his indispensable betters, is also imbued with 
the uncritical faith that the invested wealth which enables 
these betters tracelessly to consume a due share of the 
yearly product is an addition to the aggregate means 
in hand. 

290 On the Nature of Peace 

The advancement of commercial and other business 
enterprise beyond the national frontiers is consequently 
one of the duties not to be neglected, and with which no 
trifling can be tolerated. It is so bound up with national 
ideals, under any gentlemanly government, that any in- 
vasion or evasion of the rights of investors in foreign 
parts, or of other business involved in dealings with for- 
eign parts, immediately involves not only the material 
.interest of the nation but the national honor as well. 
Hence international jealousies and eventual embroilment. 
The constitutional monarchy that commonly covers a 
modern democratic community is accordingly a menace 
to the common peace, and any pacific league of neutrals 
will be laying up trouble and prospective defeat for itself 
in allowing such an institution to stand over in any in- 
stance. Acting with a free hand, if such a thing were 
possible, the projected league should logically eliminate 
all monarchical establishments, , constitutional or other- 
wise, from among its federated nations. It is doubtless 
not within reason to look for such a move in the nego- 
tiations that are to initiate the projected league of neu- 
trals; but the point is called to mind here chiefly as indi- 
cating one of the difficult passages which are to be faced 
in any attempted formation of such a league, as well as 
one of the abiding sources of international irritation with 
which the league's jurisdiction will be burdened so long 
as a decisive measure of the kind is not taken. 

The logic of the whole matter is simple enough, and 
the. necessary measures to be taken to remedy it are no 
less simple barring sentimental objections which will 
probably prove insuperable. A monarchy, even a suffi- 
ciently inane monarchy, carries the burden of a gentle- 
manly governmental establishment a government by and 

Elimination of the Unfit 291 

for the kept classes ; such a government will unavoidably 
direct the affairs of state with a view to income on in- 
vested wealth, and will see the material interests of the 
country only in so far as they present themselves under 
the form of investment and business enterprise designed 
to eventuate in investment; these are the only forms of 
material interest that give rise to international jealousies, 
discriminations and misunderstanding, at the same time 
that they are interests of individuals only and have no 
material use or value to the community at large. Given 
a monarchical establishment and the concomitant gentle- 
manly governmental corps, there is no avoiding this sin- 
ister prime mover of international rivalry, so long as the 
rights of invested wealth continue in popular apprehen- 
sion to be held inviolable. 

Quite obviously there is a certain tu quoque ready to 
the hand of these "gentlemen of the old school" who see 
in the constitutional monarchy a God-given shelter from 
the unreserved vulgarisation of life at the hands of the 
unblest and unbalanced underbred and underfed. The 
formally democratic nations, that have not retained even 
a pseudo-dynastic royalty, are not much more fortunately 
placed in respect of national discrimination in trade and 
investment. The American republic will obviously come 
into the comparison as the type-form of economic policy 
in a democratic commonwealth. There is little to choose 
between the economic policy pursued by such republics 
as France or America on the one side and their nearest 
counterparts among the constitutional monarchies on the 
other. It is even to be admitted out of hand that the 
comparison does no credit to democratic institutions as 
seen at work in these republics. They are, in fact, some- 
what the crudest and most singularly foolish in their 

292 On the Nature of Peace 

economic policy of any peoples in Christendom. And in 
view of the amazing facility with which these democratic 
commonwealths are always ready to delude themselves 
in everything that touches their national trade policies, it 
is obvious that any league of neutrals whose fortunes are 
in any degree contingent on their reasonable compliance 
with a call to neutralise their trade regulations for the 
sake of peace, will have need of all the persuasive power 
it can bring to bear. 

However, the powers of darkness have one less line of 
defense to shelter them and their work of malversation 
in these commonwealths than in the constitutional mon- 
archies. The American national establishment, e. g., 
which may be taken as a fairly characteristic type-form 
in this bearing, is a government of business men for 
business ends; and there is no tabu of axiomatic gen- 
tility or of certified pedigree to hedge about this working 
syndicate of business interests. So that it is all nearer 
by one remove to the disintegrating touch of the common 
man and his commonplace circumstances. The business- 
like regime of these democratic politicians is as unde- 
viating in its advocacy and aid of enterprise in pursuit 
of private gain under shelter of national discrimination as 
the circumstances will permit; and the circumstances 
will permit them to do much and go far; for the limits 
of popular gullibility in all things that touch the admirable 
feats of business enterprise are very wide in these coun- 
tries. There is a sentimental popular belief running to 
the curious effect that because the citizens of such a com- 
monwealth are ungraded equals before the law, therefore 
somehow they can all and several become wealthy by 
trading at the expense of their neighbours. 

Elimination of the Unfit 293 

Yet, the fact remains that there is only the one line of 
defense in these countries where the business interests 
have not the countenance of a time-honored order of gen- 
tlefolk, with the sanction of royalty in the background. 
And this fact is further enhanced by one of its immediate 
consequences. Proceeding upon the abounding faith 
which these peoples have in business enterprise as a uni- 
versal solvent, the unreserved venality and greed of their 
businss men unhampered by the gentleman's noblesse 
oblige have pushed the conversion of public law to pri- 
vate gain farther and more openly here than elsewhere. 
The outcome has been divers measures in restraint of 
trade or in furtherance of profitable abuses, of such a 
crass and flagrant character that if once the popular ap- 
prehension is touched by matter-of-fact reflection on the 
actualities of this businesslike policy the whole structure 
should reasonably be expected to crumble. If the present 
conjuncture of circumstances should, e. g., present to 
the American populace a choice between exclusion from 
the neutral league, and a consequent probable and dubious 
war of self-defense, on the one hand ; as against entrance 
into the league, and security at the cost of relinquishing 
their national tariff in restraint of trade, on the other 
hand, it is always possible that the people might be brought 
to look their protective tariff in the face and recognise it 
for a commonplace conspiracy in restraint of trade, and 
so decide to shuffle it out of the way as a good riddance. 
And the rest of the Republic's businesslike policy of 
special favors would in such a case stand a chance of 
going in the discard along with the protective tariff, since 
the rest is of substantially the same disingenuous char- 

294 On the Nature of Peace 

Not that anyone need entertain a confident expectation 
of such an exploit of commonsense on the part of the 
American voters. There is little encouragement for such 
a hope in their past career of gullibility on this head. 
But this is again a point of difficulty to be faced in 
negotiations looking to such a pacific league of neutrals. 
Without a somewhat comprehensive neutralisation of na- 
tional trade regulations, the outlook for lasting peace 
would be reduced by that much ; there would be so much 
material for international jealousy and misunderstanding 
left standing over and requiring continued readjustment 
and compromise, always with the contingency of a breach 
that much nearer. The infatuation of the Americans with 
their protective tariff and other businesslike discrimina- 
tions is a sufficiently serious matter in this connection, 
and it is always possible that their inability to give up 
this superstition might lead to their not adhering to this 
projected neutral league. Yet it is at least to be said 
that the longer the time that passes before active meas- 
ures are taken toward the organisation of such a league 
that is to say, in effect, the longer the great war lasts 
the more amenable is the temper of the Americans likely 
to be, and the more reluctantly would they see themselves 
excluded. Should the war be protracted to some such 
length as appears to be promised by latterday pronun- 
ciamentos from the belligerents, or to something passably 
approaching such a duration; and should the Imperial 
designs and anomalous diplomacy of Japan continue to 
force themselves on the popular attention at the present 
rate ; at the same time that the operations in Europe con- 
tinue to demonstrate the excessive cost of defense against 
a well devised and resolute offensive ; then it should rea- 
sonably be expected that the. Americans might come to 

Elimination of the Unfit 295 

such a realisation of their own case as to let no minor 
considerations of trade discrimination stand in the way 
of their making common cause with the other pacific 

It appears already to be realised in the most responsible 
quarter that America needs the succor of the other pacific 
nations, with a need that is not to be put away or put off ; 
as it is also coming to be realised that the Imperial Powers 
are disturbers of the peace, by force of their Imperial 
character. Of course, the politicians who seek their own 
advantage in the nation's embarrassment are commonly 
unable to see the matter in that light. But it is also ap- 
parent that the popular sentiment is affected with the same 
apprehension, more and more as time passes and the aims 
and methods of the Imperial Powers become more patent. 

Hitherto the spokesmen of a pacific federation of na- 
tions have spoken for a league of such an (indeterminate) 
constitution as to leave all the federated nations undis- 
turbed in all their conduct of their own affairs, domestic 
or international; probably for want of second thought as 
to the complications of copartnership between them in so 
grave and unwonted an enterprise. They have also spoken 
of America's share in the project as being that of an in- 
terested outsider, whose interest in any precautionary 
measures of this kind is in part a regard for his own 
tranquility as a disinterested neighbour, but in greater 
part a humane solicitude for the well-being of civilised 
mankind at large. In this view, somewhat self-complacent 
it is to be admitted, America is conceived to come into 
the case as initiator and guide, about whom the pacific 
nations are to duster as some -sort of queen-bee. 

Now, there is not a little verisimilitude in this concep- 
tion of America as a sort of central office and a tower 

296 On the Nature of Peace 

of strength in the projected federation of neutral nations, 
however pharisaical an appearance it may all have in 
the self-complacent utterances of patriotic Americans. 
The American republic is, after all, the greatest of the 
pacific nations of Christendom, in resources, population 
and industrial capacity; and it is also not to be denied 
that the temper of this large population is, on the whole, 
as pacific as that of any considerable people outside of 
China. The adherence of the American republic would, in 
effect, double the mass and powers of the projected 
league, and would so place it beyond all hazard of defeat 
from without, or even of serious outside opposition to its 

Yet it will not hold true that America is either disin- 
terested or indispensable. The unenviable position of the 
indispensable belongs to the United Kingdom, and car- 
ries with it the customary suspicion of interested motives 
that attaches to the stronger party in a bargain. To 
America, on the other hand, the league is indispensable, 
as a refuge from otherwise inevitable dangers ahead ; and 
it is only a question of a moderate allowance of time for 
the American voters to realise that without an adequate 
copartnership with the other pacific nations the outlook 
of the Republic is altogether precarious. Single-handed, 
America can not defend itself, except at a prohibitive 
cost; whereas in copartnership with these others the 
national defense becomes a virtually negligible matter. 
It is for America a choice between a policy of extravagant 
armament and aggressive diplomacy, with a doubtful 
issue, on the one side, and such abatement of national pre- 
tensions as would obviate bootless contention, on the 
other side. 

Elimination of the Unfit 297 

Yet, it must be admitted, the patriotic temper of the 
American people is of such a susceptible kind as to leave 
the issue in doubt. Not that the Americans will not en- 
deavor to initiate some form of compact for the keeping 
of the peace, when hostilities are concluded ; barring un- 
foreseen contingencies, it is virtually a foregone conclu- 
sion that the attempt will be made, and that the Americans 
will take an active part in its promotion. But the doubt 
is as to their taking such a course as will lead to a com- 
pact of the kind needed to safeguard the peace of the 
country. The business interests have much to say in the 
counsels of the Americans, and these business interests 
look to short-term gains American business interests 
particularly to be derived from the country's necessities. 
It is likely to appear that the business interests, through 
representatives in Congress and elsewhere, will dis- 
approve of any peace compact that does not involve an 
increase of the national armament and a prospective de- 
mand for munitions and an increased expenditure of the 
national funds. 

With or without the adherence of America, the pacific 
nations of Europe will doubtless endeavour to form a 
league or alliance designed to keep the peace. If America 
does not come into the arrangement it may well come to 
nothing much more than a further continued defensive 
alliance of the belligerent nations now opposed to the Ger- 
man coalition. In any case it is still a point in doubt 
whether the league so projected is to be merely a compact 
of defensive armament against a common enemy in 
which case it will necessarily be transient, perhaps ephem- 
eral o r a more inclusive coalition of a closer character 
designed to avoid any breach of the peace, by disarmament 
and by disallowance and disclaimer of such national pre- 

298 On the Nature of Peace 

tensions and punctilio as the patriotic sentiment of the 
contracting parties will consent to dispense with. The 
nature of the resulting peace, therefore, as well as its 
chances of duration, will in great measure be conditioned 
on the fashion of peace-compact on which it is to rest; 
which will be conditioned in good part on the degree in 
which the warlike coalition under German Imperial con* 
trol is effectually to be eliminated from the situation as a 
prospective disturber of the peace; which, in turn, is a 
question somewhat closely bound up with the further 
duration of the war, as has already been indicated in an 
earlier passage. 



Evidently the conception of peace on which its various 
spokesmen are proceeding is by no means the same for all 
of them. In the current German conception, e. g., as seen 
in the utterances of its many and urgent spokesmen, peace 
appears to be of the general nature of a truce between na- 
tions, whose God-given destiny it is, in time, to adjust a 
claim to precedence by wager of battle. They will some- 
times speak of it, euphemistically, with a view to concili- 
ation, as "assurance of the national future," in which the 
national future is taken to mean an opportunity for the 
extension of the national dominion at the expense of some 
other national establishment. In the same connection one 
may recall the many eloquent passages on the State and its 
paramount place and value in the human economy. The 
State is useful for disturbing the peace. This German 
notion may confidently be set down as the lowest of the 
current conceptions of peace; or perhaps rather as the 
notion of peace reduced to the lowest terms at which it 
continues to be recognisable as such. Next beyond in that 
direction lies the notion of armistice ; which differs from 
this conception of peace chiefly in connoting specifically 
a definite and relatively short interval between warlike 

The conception of peace as being a period of prepara- 
tion for war has many adherents outside the Fatherland, 


300 On the Nature of Peace 

of course. Indeed, it has probably a wider vogue and a 
readier acceptance among men who interest themselves in 
questions of peace and war than any other. It goes hand 
in hand with that militant nationalism that is taken for 
granted, conventionally, as the common ground of those 
international relations that play a part in diplomatic inter- 
course. It is the diplomatist's metier to talk war in para- 
bles of peace. This conception of peace as a precarious 
interval of preparation has come down to the present out 
of the feudal age and is, of course, best at home where the 
feudal range of preconceptions has suffered least dilapida- 
tion; and it carries the feudalistic presumption that all 
national establishments are competitors for dominion, aft- 
er the scheme of Macchiavelli. The peace which is had on 
this footing, within the realm, is a peace of subjection, 
more or less pronounced according as the given national 
establishment is more or less on the militant order ; a war- 
like organisation being necessarily of a servile character, 
in the same measure in which it is warlike. 

In much the same measure and with much the same 
limitations as the modern democratic nations have de- 
parted from the feudal system of civil relations and from 
the peculiar range of conceptions which characterise that 
system, they have also come in for a new or revised con- 
ception of peace. Instead of its being valued chiefly as a 
space of time in which to prepare for war, offensive or de- 
fensive, among these democratic and provisionally pacific 
nations it has come to stand in the common estimation 
as the normal and stable manner of life, good and com- 
mendable in its own right. These modern, pacific, com- 
monwealths stand on the defensive, habitually. They are 
still pugnaciously national, but they have unlearned so 
much of the feudal preconceptions as to leave them in 

Peace and the Price System 301 

a defensive attitude, under the watch-word: Peace with 
honor. Their quasi-f eudalistic national prestige is not to 
be trifled with, though it has lost so much of its fascina- 
tion as ordinarily not to serve the purposes of an ag- 
gressive enterprise, at least not without some shrewd 
sophistication at the hands of militant politicians and their 
diplomatic agents. Of course, an exuberant patriotism 
may now and again take on the ancient barbarian vehe- 
mence and lead such a provisionally pacific nation into an 
aggressive raid against a helpless neighbor; but it re- 
mains characteristically true, after all, that these peoples 
look on the country's peace as the normal and ordinary 
course of things, which each nation is to take care of for 
itself and by its own force. 

The ideal of the nineteenth-century statesmen was to 
keep the peace by a balance of power ; an unstable equi- 
librium of rivalries, in which it was recognised that eternal 
vigilance was the price of peace by equilibration. Since 
then, by force of the object-lesson of the twentieth-century 
wars, it has become evident that eternal vigilance will no 
longer keep the peace by equilibration, and the balance of 
power has become obsolete. At the same time things have 
so turned that an effective majority of the civilised nations 
now see their advantage in peace, without further op- 
portunity to seek further dominion. These nations have 
also been falling into the shape of commonwealths, and 
so have lost something of their national spirit. 

With much reluctant hesitation and many misgivings, 
the statesmen of these pacific nations are accordingly 
busying themselves with schemes for keeping the peace on 
the unfamiliar footing of a stable equilibrium ; the method 
preferred on the whole being an equilibration of make- 
believe, in imitation of the obsolete balance of power. 

302 On the Nature of Peace 

There is a meticulous regard for national jealousies and 
discriminations, which it is -thought necessary to keep in- 
tact. Of course, on any one of these slightly diversified 
plans of keeping the peace on a stable footing of copart- 
nery among the pacific nations, national jealousies and 
national integrity no longer have any substantial mean- 
ing. But statesmen think and plan in terms of precedent ; 
which comes to thinking and planning in terms of make- 
believe, when altered circumstances have made the pre- 
cedents obsolete. So one comes to the singular proposal 
of the statesmen, that the peace is to be kept in concert 
among these pacific nations by a provision of force with 
which to break it at will. The peace that is to be kept on 
this footing of national discriminations and national arm- 
aments will necessarily be of a precarious kind ; being, in 
effect, a statesmanlike imitation of the peace as it was once 
kept even more precariously by the pacific nations in 

Hitherto the movement toward peace has not gone be- 
yond this conception of it, as a collusive safeguarding of 
national discrepancies by force of arms. Such a peace is 
necessarily precarious, partly because armed force is use- 
ful for breaking the peace, partly because the national dis- 
crepancies, by which these current peace-makers set such 
store, are a constant source of embroilment. What the 
peace-makers might logically be expected to concern them- 
selves about would be the elimination of these discrep- 
ancies that make for embroilment. But what they actu- 
ally seem concerned about is their preservation. A peace 
by collusive neglect of those remnants of feudalistic make- 
believe that still serve to divide the pacific nations has 
hitherto not seriously come under advisement. 

Peace and the Price System 303 

Evidently, hitherto, and for the calculable future, peace 
is a relative matter, a matter of more or less, whichever 
of the several working conceptions spoken of above may 
rule the case. Evidently, too, a peace designed to strength- 
en the national establishment against eventual war, will 
count to a different effect from a collusive peace of a 
defensive kind among the pacific peoples, designed by its 
projectors to conserve those national discrepancies on 
which patriotic statesmen like to dwell. Different from 
both would be the value of a peace by neglect of such use- 
less national discriminations as now make for embroilment. 
A protracted season of peace should logically have a some- 
what different cultural value according to the character of 
the public policy to be pursued under its cover. So that a 
safe and sane conservation of the received law and order 
should presumably best be effected under cover of - a 
collusive peace of the defensive kind, which is designed 
to retain those national discrepancies intact that count for 
so much in the national life of today, both as a focus of 
patriotic sentiment and as an outlet for national expendi- 
tures. This plan would involve the least derangement of 
the received order among the democratic peoples, although 
the plan might itself undergo some change in the course 
of time. 

Among the singularities of the latterday situation, in 
this connection, and brought out by the experiences of the 
great war, is a close resemblance between latterday war- 
like operations and the ordinary processes of industry. 
Modern warfare and modern industry alike are carried on 
.by technological processes subject to surveillance and 
direction by mechanical engineers, or perhaps rather ex- 
perts in engineering science of the mechanistic kind. 

304 On the Nature of Peace 

War is not now a matter of the stout heart and strong 
arm. Not that these attributes do not have their place 
and value in modern warfare ; but they are no longer the 
chief or decisive factors in the case. The exploits that 
count in this warfare are technological exploits ; exploits 
of technological science, industrial appliances, and techno- 
logical training. As has been remarked before, it is no 
longer a gentlemen's war, and the gentleman, as such, is 
no better than a marplot in the game as it is played. 

Certain consequences follow from this state of the case. 
Technology and industrial experience, in large volume 
and at a high proficiency, are indispensable to the conduct 
of war on the modern plan, as well as a large, efficient 
and up-to-date industrial community and industrial plant 
to supply the necessary material of this warfare. At the 
same time the discipline of the campaign, as it impinges 
on the rank and file as well as on the very numerous body 
of officers and technicians, is not at cross purposes with 
the ordinary industrial employments of peace, or not in 
the same degree as has been the case in the past, even in 
the recent past. The experience of the campaign does 
not greatly unfit the men who survive for industrial uses ; 
nor does it come in as a sheer interruption of their in- 
dustrial training, or break the continuity of that range 
of habits of thought which modern industry of the techno- 
logical order induces ; not in the same degree as was the 
case under the conditions of war as carried on in the 
nineteenth century. The cultural, and particularly the 
technological, incidence of this modern warfare should 
evidently be appreciably different from what has been ex- 
perienced in the past, and from what this past experience 
has induced students of these matters to look for among 
the psychological effects of warlike experience. 

Peace and the Price System 305 

It remains true that the discipline of the campaign, how- 
ever impersonal it may tend to become, still inculcates per- 
sonal subordination and unquestioning obedience; and 
yet the modern tactics and methods of fighting bear some- 
what more on the individual's initiative, discretion, sagac- 
ity and self-possession than once would have been true. 
Doubtless the men who come out of this great war, the 
common men, will bring home an accentuated and 
acrimonious patriotism, a venomous hatred of the enemies 
whom they have missed killing ; but it may reasonably be 
doubted if they come away with a correspondingly height- 
ened admiration and affection for their betters who have 
failed to make good as foremen in charge of this team- 
work in killing. The years of the war have been trying 
to the reputation of officials and officers, who have had to 
meet uncharted exigencies with not much better chance of 
guessing the way through than their subalterns have had. 

By and large, it is perhaps not to be doubted that the 
populace now under arms will return from the experience 
of the war with some net gain in loyalty to the nation's 
honor and in allegiance to their masters ; particularly the 
German subjects, the like is scarcely true for the Brit- 
ish ; but a doubt will present itself as to the magnitude of 
this net gain in subordination, or this net loss in self- 
possession. A doubt may be permitted as to whether the 
common man in the countries of the Imperial coalition, e. 
g., will, as the net outcome of this war experience, be in a 
perceptibly more pliable frame of mind as touches his 
obligations toward his betters and subservience to the ir- 
responsible authority exercised by the various govern- 
mental agencies, than he was at the outbreak of the war. 
At that time, there is reason to believe, there was an 
ominous, though scarcely threatening, murmur of dis- 


306 On the Nature of Peace 

content beginning to be heard among the working classes 
of the industrial towns. It is fair to presume, however, 
that the servile discipline of the service and the vindictive 
patriotism bred of the fight should combine to render the 
populace of the Fatherland more amenable to the ir- 
responsible rule of the Imperial dynasty and its sub- 
altern royal establishments, in spite of any slight effect 
of a contrary character exercised by the training in tech- 
nological methods and in self-reliance, with which this 
discipline of the service has been accompanied. As to 
the case of the British population, under arms or under 
compulsion of necessity at home, something has already 
been said in an earlier passage ; and much will apparently 
depend, in their case, on the further duration of the war. 
The case of the other nationalities involved, both neutrals 
and belligerents, is even more obscure in this bearing, 
but it is also of less immediate consequence for the present 

The essentially feudal virtues of loyalty and bellicose 
patriotism would appear to have gained their great as- 
cendency over all men's spirit within the Western civili- 
sation by force of the peculiarly consistent character of 
the discipline of life under feudal conditions, whether in 
war or peace ; and to the same uniformity of these forces 
that shaped the workday habits of thought among the 
feudal nations is apparently due that profound institu- 
tionalisation of the preconceptions of patriotism and loyal- 
ty, by force of which these preconceptions still hold the 
modern peoples in an unbreakable web of prejudice, after 
the conditions favoring their acquirement have in great 
part ceased to operate. These preconceptions of national 
solidarity and international enmity have come down from 

Peace and the Price System 307 

the past as an integral part of the unwritten constitution 
underlying all these modern nations, even those which 
have departed most widely from the manner of life to 
which the peoples owe these ancient preconceptions. 
Hitherto, or rather until, recent times, the workday ex- 
perience of these peoples has not seriously worked at 
cross purposes with the patriotic spirit and its bias of na- 
tional animosity; and what discrepancy there has effec- 
tively been between the discipline of workday life and the 
received institutional preconceptions on this head, has 
hitherto been overborne by the unremitting inculcation of 
these virtues by interested politicians, priests and pub- 
licists, who speak habitually for the received order of 

That order of things which is known on its political and 
civil side as the feudal system, together .with that era of 
the dynastic States which succeeds the feudal age techni- 
cally so called, was, on its industrial or technological side, 
a system of trained man-power organised on a plan of 
subordination of man to man. On the whole, the scheme 
and logic of that life, whether in its political (warlike) or 
its industrial doings,, whether in war or peace, runs on 
terms of personal capacity, proficiency and relations. The 
organisation of the forces engaged and the constraining 
rules according to which this organisation worked, were 
of the nature of personal relations, and the impersonal 
factors in the case were taken for granted. Politics and 
war were a field for personal valor, force and cunning, in 
practical effect a field for personal force and fraud. In- 
dustry was a field in which the routine of life, and its 
.outcome, turned on "the skill, dexterity and judgment of 
the individual workman," in the words of Adam Smith. 

308 On the Nature of Peace 

The feudal age passed, being done to death by handi- 
craft industry, commercial traffic, gunpowder, and the 
state-making politicians. But the political States of the 
statemakers, the dynastic States as they may well be called, 
continued the conduct of political life on the personal 
plane of rivalry and jealously between dynasties and be- 
tween their States; and in spite of gunpowder and the 
new military engineering, warfare continued also to be, 
in the main and characteristically, a field in which man- 
power and personal qualities decided the outcome, by vir- 
tue of personal "skill, dexterity and judgment." Mean- 
time industry and its technology by insensible degrees 
underwent a change in the direction of impersonalisation, 
particularly in those countries in which statemaking and 
its warlike enterprise had ceased, or were ceasing, to be 
the chief interests and the controlling preconception of 
the people. 

The logic of the new, mechanical industry which has 
supplanted handicraft in these countries, is a mechanistic 
logic, which proceeds in terms of matter-of-fact strains, 
masses, velocities, and the like, instead of the "skill, dex- 
terity and judgment" of personal agents. The new in- 
dustry does not dispense with the personal agencies, nor 
can it even be said to minimise the need of skill, dexterity 
and judgment in the personal agents employed, but it does 
take them and their attributes for granted as in some sort 
a foregone premise to its main argnment. The logic of the 
handicraft system took the impersonal agencies for grant- 
ed; the machine industry takes the skill, dexterity and 
judgment of the workmen for granted. The processes of 
thought, and therefore the consistent habitual discipline, of 
the former ran in terms of the personal agents engaged, 
and of the personal relations of discretion, control and 

Peace and the Price System 309 

subordination necessary to the work; whereas the me- 
chanistic logic of the modern technology, more and more 
consistently, runs in terms of the impersonal forces en- 
gaged, and inculcates an habitual predilection for matter- 
of-fact statement, and an habitual preconception that the 
findings of material science alone are conclusive. 

In those nations that have made up the advance guard 
of Western civilisation in its movement out of feudalism, 
the disintegrating effect of this matter-of-fact animus in- 
culcated by the later state of the industrial arts has ap- 
parently acted effectively, in some degree, to discredit 
those preconceptions of personal discrimination on which 
dynastic rule is founded. But in no case has the disci- 
pline of this mechanistic technology yet wrought its per- 
fect work or come to a definitive conclusion. Mean- 
time war and politics have on the whole continued on 
the ancient plane ; it may perhaps be fair to say that politics 
has so continued because warlike enterprise has continued 
still to be a matter of such personal forces as skill, dex- 
terity and judgment, valor and cunning, personal force 
and fraud. Latterly, gradually, but increasingly, the 
technology of war, too, has been shifting to the mechan- 
istic plane; until in the latest phases of it, somewhere 
about the turn of the century, it is evident that the logic 
of warfare too has come to be the same mechanistic logic 
that makes the modern state of the industrial arts. 

What, if anything, is due by consequence to overtake 
the political strategy and the political preconceptions of the 
new century, is a question that will obtrude itself, though 
with scant hope of finding a ready answer. It may even 
seem a rash, as well as an ungraceful, undertaking to in- 
quire into the possible manner and degree of prospective 
decay to which the received political ideals and virtues 

310 On the Nature of Peace 

would appear to be exposed by consequence of this de- 
rangement of the ancient discipline to which men have 
been subjected. So much, however, would seem evident, 
that the received virtues and ideals of patriotic animosity 
and national jealousy can best be guarded against untimely 
decay by resolutely holding to the formal observance of 
all outworn punctilios of national integrity and dis- 
crimination, in spite of their increasing disserviceability, 
as would be done, e. g., or at least sought to be done, in 
the installation of a league of neutral nations to keep the 
peace and at the same time to safeguard those "national 
interests" whose only use is to divide these nations and 
keep them in a state of mutual envy and distrust. 

Those peoples who are subject to the constraining gov- 
ernance of this modern state of the industrial arts, as 
all modern peoples are in much the same measure in which 
they are "modern," are, therefore, exposed to a workday 
discipline running at cross purposes with the received law 
and order as it takes effect in national affairs ; and to this 
is to be added that, with warlike enterprise also shifted 
to this same mechanistic technological ground, war can no 
longer be counted on so confidently as before to correct all 
the consequent drift away from the ancient landmarks 
of dynastic, pseudo-dynastic, and national enterprise in 

As has been noted above, modern warfare not only 
makes use of, and indeed depends on, the modern indus- 
trial technology at every turn of the operations in the 
field, but it draws on the ordinary industrial resources of 
the countries at war in a degree and with an urgency 
never equalled. No nation can hope to make a stand in 
modern warfare, much less to make headway in warlike 

Peace and the Price System 311. 

enterprise, without the most thoroughgoing exploitation 
of the modern industrial arts. Which signifies for the 
purpose in hand that any Power that harbors an imperial 
ambition must take measures to let its underlying popula- 
tion acquire the ways and means of the modern machine 
industry, without reservation ; which in turn signifies that 
popular education must be taken care of to such an extent 
as may be serviceable in this manner of industry and in 
the manner of life which this industrial system necessarily 
imposes; which signifies, of course, that only the thor- 
oughly trained and thoroughly educated nations have a 
chance of holding their place as formidable Powers in 
this latterday phase of civilisation. What is needed is the 
training and education that go to make proficiency in the 
modern fashion of technology and in those material 
sciences that conduce to technological proficiency of this 
modern order. It is a matter of course that in these 
premises any appreciable illiteracy is an intolerable handi- 
cap. So is also any training which discourages habitual 
self-reliance and initiative, or which acts as a check on 
skepticism; for the skeptical frame of mind is a neces- 
sary part of the intellectual equipment that makes for ad- 
vance, invention and understanding in the field of tech- 
nological proficiency. 

But these requirements, imperatively necessary as a con- 
dition of warlike success, are at cross purposes with that 
unquestioning respect of persons and that spirit of abnega- 
tion that alone can hold a people to the political institutions 
of the old order and make them a willing instrument in the 
hands of the dynastic statesmen. The dynastic State is 
apparently caught in a dilemma. The necessary prepara- 
tion for warlike enterprise on the modern plan can ap- 
parently be counted on, in the long run, to disintegrate the 

312 On the Nature of Peace 

foundations of the dynastic State. But it is only in the 
long run that this effect can be counted on; and it is 
perhaps not securely to be counted on even in a moder- 
ately long run of things as they have run hitherto, if due 
precautions are taken by the interested statesmen, as 
would seem to be indicated by the successful conservation 
of archaic traits in the German peoples during the past 
half century under the archaising rule of the Hohenzol- 
lern. It is a matter of habituation, which takes time, and 
which can at the same time be neutralised in some degree 
by indoctrination. 

Still, when all is told, it will probably have to be 
conceded that, e. g., such a nation as Russia will fall 
under this rule of inherent disability imposed by the 
necessary use of the modern industrial arts. Without a 
fairly full and free command of these modern industrial 
methods on the part of the Russian people, together with 
the virtual disappearance of illiteracy, and with the facile 
and far-reaching system of communication which it all 
involves, the Russian Imperial establishment would not 
be a formidable power or a serious menace to the pacific 
nations; and it is not easy to imagine how the Imperial 
establishment could retain its hold and its character under 
the conditions indicated. 

The case of Japan, taken by itself, rests on somewhat 
similar lines as these others. In time, and in this case 
le time-allowance should presumably not be anything 
ery large, the Japanese people are likely to get an ade- 
uate command of the modern technology ; which would, 
lere as elsewhere, involve the virtual disappearance of the 
>resent high illiteracy, and the loss, in some passable 
neasure, of the current superstitiously crass nationalism 
)f that people. There are indications that something of 

Peace and the Price System 313 

that kind, and of quite disquieting dimensions, is already 
under way; though with no indication that any conse- 
quent disintegrating habits of thought have yet invaded 
the sacred close of Japanese patriotic devotion. 

Again, it is a question of time and habituation. With 
time and habituation the emperor may insensibly cease to 
be of divine pedigree, and the syndicate of statesmen who 
are doing business under his signature may consequently 
find their measures of Imperial expansion questioned by 
the people who pay the bills. But so long as the Imperial 
syndicate enjoy their present immunity from outside ob- 
struction, and can accordingly carry on an uninterrupted 
campaign of cumulative predation in Korea, China and 
Manchuria, the patriotic infatuation is less likely to fall 
off, and by so much the decay of Japanese loyalty will be 
retarded. Yet, even if allowed anything that may seem at 
all probable in the way of a free hand for aggression 
against their hapless neighbours, the skepticism and insub- 
ordination to personal rule that seems inseparable in the 
long run from addiction to the modern industrial arts 
should be expected presently to overtake the Japanese 
spirit of loyal servitude. And the opportunity of Imperial 
Japan lies in the interval. So also does the menace of Im- 
perial Japan as a presumptive disturber of the peace at 

At the cost of some unavoidable tedium, the argument 
as regards these and similar instances may be summarised. 
It appears, in the (possibly doubtful) light of the history 
of democratic institutions and of modern technology hith- 
erto, as also from the logical character of this technology 
and its underlying material sciences, that consistent ad- 
diction to the peculiar habits of thought involved in its 

314 On the Nature of Peace 

carrying on will presently induce a decay of those pre- 
conceptions in which dynastic government and national 
ambitions have their ground. Continued addiction to this 
modern scheme of industrial life should in time eventuate 
in a decay of militant nationalism, with a consequent lapse 
of warlike enterprise. At the same time, popular pro- 
ficiency in the modern industrial arts, with all that that 
implies in the way of intelligence and information, is indis- 
pensable as a means to any successful warlike enterprise 
on the modern plan. The menace of warlike aggression 
from such dynastic States, e. g., as Imperial Germany and 
Imperial Japan is due to their having acquired a competent 
use of this modern technology, while they have not yet 
had time to lose that spirit of dynastic loyalty which they 
have carried over from an archaic order of things, out of 
which they have emerged at a very appreciably later period 
(last half of the nineteenth century) than those democrat- 
ic peoples whose peace they now menace. As has been 
-said, they have taken over this modern state of the indus- 
trial arts without having yet come in for the defects of 
its qualities. This modern technology, with its underly- 
ing material sciences, is a novel factor in the history 
of human culture, in that addiction to its use conduces to 
the decay of militant patriotism, at the same time that its 
employment so greatly enhances the warlike efficiency of 
even a pacific people, at need, that they can not be serious- 
ly molested by any other peoples, however valorous and 
numerous, who have not a competent use of this technol- 
ogy. A peace at large among the civilised nations, by 
loss of the militant temper through addiction to this man- 
ner of arts of peace, therefore, carries no risk of interrup- 
tion by an inroad of warlike barbarians, always pro- 
vided that those existing archaic peoples who might pass 

Peace and the Price System 315 

muster as barbarians are brought into line with the pacific 
nations on a footing of peace and equality. The disparity 
in point of outlook as between the resulting peace at large 
by neglect of bootless animosities, on the one hand, and 
those historic instances of a peaceable civilisation that 
have been overwhelmed by warlike barbarian invasions, on 
the other hand, should be evident. 

It is always possible, indeed it would scarcely be surpris- 
ing to find, that the projected league of neutrals or of 
nations bent on peace can not be brought to realisation at 
this juncture; perhaps not for a long time yet. But it 
should at the same time seem reasonable to expect that the 
drift toward a peaceable settlement of national discrep- 
ancies such as has been visible in history for some 
appreciable time past will, in the absence of unforeseen 
hindrances, work out to some such effect in the course of 
further experience under modern conditions. And 
whether the projected peace coynpact at its inception takes 
one form or another, provided it succeeds in its main pur- 
pose, the long-term drift of things under its rule should 
logically set toward some ulterior settlement of the .gen- 
eral character of what has here been spoken of as a 
peace by neglect or by neutralisation of discrepancies. 

It should do so, in the absence of unforeseen contin- 
gencies ; more particularly if there were no effectual factor 
of dissension included in the fabric of institutions within 
the nation. But there should also, e. g., be no difficulty 
in assenting to the forecast that when and if national peace 
and security are achieved and settled beyond recall, the 
discrepancy in fact between those who own the country's 
wealth and those who do not is presently due to come to 
an issue. Any attempt to forecast the form which this 

316 On the Nature of Peace 

issue is to take, or the manner, incidents, adjuncts and 
sequelae of its determination, would be a bolder and a 
more ambiguous, undertaking. Hitherto attempts to bring 
this question to an issue have run aground on the real or 
fancied jeopardy to paramount national interests. How, 
if at all, this issue might affect national interests and in- 
ternational relations, would obviously depend in the first 
instance on the state of the given national establishment 
and the character of the international engagements entered 
into in the formation of this projected pacific league. It 
is always conceivable that the transactions involving so 
ubiquitous an issue might come to take on an international 
character and that they might touch the actual or fanci- 
ful interests of these diverse nations with such divergent 
effect as to bring on a rupture of the common understand- 
ing between them and of the peace-compact in which the 
common understanding is embodied. 

In the beginning, that is to say in the beginnings out of 
which this modern era of the Western civilisation has 
arisen, with its scheme of law and custom, there grew 
into the scheme of law and custom, by settled usage, a 
right of ownership and of contract in disposal of owner- 
ship, which may or may not have been a salutary institu- 
tional arrangement on the whole, under the circumstances 
of the early days. With the later growth of handicraft 
and the petty trade in Western Europe this right of own- 
ership and contract came to be insisted on, standardised 
under legal specifications, and secured against molestation 
by the governmental interests; more particularly and 
scrupulously among those peoples that have taken the 
lead in working out that system of free or popular insti- 
tutions that marks the modern civilised nations. So it 

Peace and the Price System 317 

has come to be embodied in the common law of the modern 
world as an inviolable natural right. It has all the pre- 
scriptive force of legally authenticated immemorial cus- 

Under the system of handicraft and petty trade this 
right of property and free contract served the interest 
of the common man, at least in much of its incidence, and 
acted in its degree to shelter industrious and economical 
persons from hardship and indignity at the hands of their 
betters. There seems reason to believe, as is commonly 
believed, that so long as that relatively direct and simple 
scheme of industry and trade lasted, the right of owner- 
ship and contract was a salutary custom, in its bearing on 
the fortunes of the common man. It appears also, on the 
whole, to have been favorable to the fuller development of 
the handicraft technology, as well as to its eventual out- 
growth into the new line of technological expedients and 
contrivancies that presently gave rise to the machine in- 
dustry and the large-scale business enterprise. 

The standard theories of economic science have as- 
sumed the rights of property and contract as axiomatic 
premises and ultimate terms of analysis ; and their theories 
are commonly drawn in such a form as would fit the cir- 
cumstances of the handicraft industry and the petty trade, 
and such as can be extended to any other economic situa- 
tion by shrewd interpretation. These theories, as they 
run from Adam Smith down through the nineteenth cen- 
tury and later, appear tenable, on the whole, when taken 
to apply to the economic situation of that earlier time, in 
virtually all that they have to say on questions of wages, 
capital, savings, and the economy and efficiency of man- 
agement and production by the methods of private enter- 
prise resting on these rights of ownership and contract and 

318 On the Nature of Peace 

governed by the pursuit of private gain. It is when these 
standard theories are sought to be applied to the later 
situation, which has outgrown the conditions of handi- 
craft, that they appear nugatory or meretricious. The 
"competitive system" which these standard theories as- 
sume as a necessary condition of their own validity, and 
about which they are designed to form a defensive hedge, 
would, under those earlier conditions of small-scale enter- 
prise and personal contact, appear to have been both a 
passably valid assumption as a premise and a passably 
expedient scheme of economic relations and traffic. At 
that period of its life-history it can not be said consis- 
tently to have worked hardship to the common man ; rather 
the reverse. And the common man in that time appears 
to have had no misgivings about the excellence of the 
scheme or of that article of Natural Rights that under- 
lies it. 

This complexion of things, as touches the effectual 
bearing of the institution of property and the ancient 
customary rights of ownership, has changed substantially 
since the time of Adam Smith. The "competitive sys- 
tem," which he looked to as the economic working-out of 
that "simple and obvious system of natural liberty" that 
always engaged his best affections, has in great measure 
ceased to operate as a routine of natural liberty, in fact; 
particularly in so far as touches the fortunes of the com- 
mon man, the impecunious mass of the people. De jure, 
of course, .the competitive system and its inviolable rights 
of ownership are a citadel of Natural Liberty; but de 
facto the common man is now, and has for some time been, 
feeling the pinch of it. It is law, and doubtless it is good 
law, grounded in immemorial usage and authenticated with 
statute and precedent. But circumstances have so chang- 

Peace and the Price System 319 

ed that this good old plan has in a degree become archaic, 
perhaps unprofitable, or even mischievous, on the whole, 
and especially as touches the conditions of life for the 
common man. At least, so the common man in these mod- 
ern democratic and commercial countries is beginning to 
apprehend the matter. 

Some slight and summary characterisation of these 
changing circumstances that have affected the incidence 
of the rights of property during modern times may, there- 
fore, not be out of place ; with a view to seeing how far 
and why these rights may be due to come under ad- 
visement and possible revision, in case a state of settled 
peace should leave men's attention free to turn to these 
internal, as contrasted with national interests. 

Under that order of handicraft and petty trade that 
led to the standardisation of these rights of ownership 
in the accentuated form which belongs to them in modern 
law and custom, the common man had a practicable chance 
of free initiative and self-direction in his choice and pur- 
suit of an occupation and a livelihood, in so far as rights 
of ownership bore on his case. At that period the work- 
man was the main factor in industry and, in the main 
and characteristically, the question of his employment 
was a question of what he would do. The material 
equipment of industry the "plant," as it has come to be 
called was subject of ownership, then as now ; but it was 
then a secondary factor and, notoriously, subsidiary to the 
immaterial equipment of skill, dexterity and judgment em- 
bodied in the person of the craftsman. The body of in- 
formation, or general knowledge, requisite to a work- 
manlike proficiency as handicraftsman was sufficiently 
slight and simple to fall within the ordinary reach of the 
working class, without special schooling; and the material 

320 On the Nature of Peace 

equipment necessary to the work, in the way of tools and 
appliances, was also slight enough, ordinarily, to bring it 
within the reach of the common man. The stress fell on 
the acquirement of that special personal skill, dexterity 
and judgment that would constitute the workman a 
master of his craft. Given a reasonable measure of per- 
tinacity, the common man would be able to compass the 
material equipment needful to the pursuit of his craft, and 
so could make his way to a livelihood ; and the inviolable 
right of ownership would then serve to secure him the 
product of his own industry, in provision for his own 
old-age and for a fair start in behalf of his children. At 
least in the popular conception, and presumably in some 
degree also in fact, the right of property so served as a 
guarantee of personal liberty and a basis of equality. 
And so its apologists still look on the institution. 

In a very appreciable degree this complexion of things 
and of popular conceptions has changed since then; al- 
though, as would be expected, the change in popular con- 
ceptions has not kept pace with the changing circum- 
stances. In all the characteristic and controlling lines of 
industry the modern machine technology calls for a 
very considerable material equipment ; so large an equip- 
ment, indeed, that this plant, as it is called, always rep- 
resents a formidable amount of invested wealth ; and also 
so large that it will, typically, employ a considerable num- 
ber of workmen per unit of plant. On the transition to 
the machine technology the plant became the unit of opera- 
tion, instead of the workman, as had previously been the 
case; and with the further development of this modern 
technology, during the past hundred and fifty years or so, 
the unit of operation and control has increasingly come to 
be not the individual or isolated plant but rather an artic- 

Peace and the Price System 321 

ulated group of such plants working together as a balanced 
system and keeping pace in common, under a collective 
business management; and coincidently the individual 
workman has been falling into the position of an auxil- 
iary factor, nearly into that of an article of supply, to 
be charged up as an item of operating expenses. Under 
this later and current system, discretion and intitative 
vest not in the workman but in the owners of the plant, 
if anywhere. So that at this point the right of owner- 
ship has ceased to be, in fact, a guarantee of personal 
liberty to the common man, and has come to be, or is 
coming to be, a guarantee of dependence. All of which 
engenders a feeling of unrest and insecurity, such as to 
instill a doubt in the mind of the common man as to the 
continued expediency of this arrangement and of the 
prescriptive rights of property on which the arrangement 

There is also an insidious suggestion, carrying a sinister 
note of discredit, that comes in from ethnological science 
at this point; which is adapted still further to derange the 
common man's faith in this received institution of owner- 
ship and its control of the material equipment of industry. 
To students interested in human culture it is a matter of 
course that this material equipment is a means of utilis- 
ing the state of the industrial arts; that it is useful in 
industry and profitable to its owners only because and 
in so far as it is a creation of the current technological 
knowledge and enables its owner to appropriate the 
usufruct of the current industrial arts. It is likewise a 
matter of course that this technological knowledge, that 
so enables the material equipment to serve the purposes 
of production and of private gain, is a free gift of the 
community at large to the owners of industrial plant; 

322 On the Nature of Peace 

and, under latterday conditions, to them exclusively. 
The state of the industrial arts is 'a joint heritage of the 
community at large, but where, as in the modern coun- 
tries, the work to be done by this technology requires 
a large material equipment, the usufruct of this joint herit- 
age passes, in effect, into the hands of the owners of 
this large material equipment. 

These owners have, ordinarily, contributed nothing to 
the technology, the state of the industrial arts, from which 
their control of the material equipment of industry enables 
them to derive a gain. Indeed, no class or condition of 
men in the modern community with the possible excep- 
tion of- politicians and the clergy can conceivably con- 
tribute less to the community's store of technological 
knowledge than the large owners of invested wealth. By 
one of those singular inversions due to production being 
managed for private gain, it happens that these investors 
are not only not given to the increase and diffusion of 
technological knowledge, but they have a well-advised 
interest in retarding or defeating improvements in the 
industrial arts in detail. Improvements, innovations that 
heighten productive efficiency in the general line of pro- 
duction in which a given investment is placed, are com- 
monly to be counted on to bring "obsolescence by super- 
session" to the plant already engaged in that line; and 
therefore to bring a decline in its income-yielding capacity, 
and so in its capital or investment value. 

Invested capital yields income -because it enjoys the 
usufruct of the community's technological knowledge; it 
has an effectual monopoly of this usufruct because this 
machine technology requires large material appliances with 
which to do its work; the interest of the owners of estab- 
lished industrial plant will not tolerate innovations de- 

Peace and the Price System 323 

signed to supersede these appliances. The bearing of 
ownership on industry and on the fortunes of the com- 
mon man is accordingly, in the main, the bearing which 
it has by virtue of its monopoly control of the industrial 
arts, and its consequent control of the conditions of em- 
ployment and of the supply of vendible products. It takes 
effect chiefly by inhibition and privation ; stoppage of pro- 
duction in case it brings no suitable profit to the investor, 
refusal of employment and of a livelihood to the workmen 
in case their product does not command a profitable price 
in the market. 

The expediency of so having the nation's industry man- 
aged on a footing of private ownership in the pursuit of 
private gain, by persons who can show no equitable per- 
sonal claim to even the most modest livelihood, and whose 
habitual method of controlling industry is sabotage re- 
fusal to let production go on except it affords them an un- 
earned income the expediency of all this is coming to be 
doubted by those who have to pay the cost of it. And 
it does not go far to lessen their doubts to find that the 
cost which they pay is commonly turned to no more urgent 
or useful purpose than a conspicuously wasteful con- 
sumption of superfluities by the captains of sabotage and 
their domestic establishments. 

This may not seem a veracious and adequate account of 
these matters; it may, in effect, fall short of -the formula- 
tion: The truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the 
-truth ; nor does the question here turn on its adequacy as 
a statement of fact. Without prejudice to the question of 
its veracity and adequacy, it is believed to be such an ac- 
count of these matters as will increasingly come easy and 
seem convincing to the common man who, in an ever in- 
creasing degree, finds himself pinched with privation and 

324 On the Nature of Peace 

insecurity by a run of facts which will consistently bear 
this construction, and who perforce sees these facts from 
the prejudiced standpoint of a loser. To such a one, there 
is reason to believe, the view so outlined will seem all the 
more convincing the more attentively the pertinent facts 
and their bearing on his fortunes are considered. How 
far the contrary prejudice of those whose interest or 
training inclines them the other way may lead them to a 
different contruction of these pertinent facts, does not 
concern the present argument ; which has to do with this 
run of facts only as they bear on the prospective frame of 
mind of that unblest mass of the population who will 
have opportunity to present their proposals when peace at 
large shall have put national interests out of their pre- 
ferential place in men's regard. 

At the risk of what may seem an excessively wide 
digression, there is something further to be said of the 
capitalistic sabotage spoken of above. The word has 
by usage come to have an altogether ungraceful air of dis- 
approval. Yet it signifies nothing more vicious than a 
deliberate obstruction or retardation of industry, usually 
by legitimate means, for the sake of some personal or 
partisan advantage. This morally colorless meaning is all 
that is intended in its use here. It is extremely common in 
all industry that is designed to supply merchantable goods 
for the market. It is, in fact, the most ordinary and 
ubiquitous of all expedients in business enterprise that 
has to do with supplying the market, being always present 
in the business man's necessary calculations ; being not only 
> usual and convenient recourse but quite indispensable as 
an habitual measure of business sagacity. So that no per- 
sonal blame can attach to its employment by any given bus- 
iness man or business concern. It is only when measures 

Peace and the Price System 325 

of this nature are resorted to by employees, to gain some 
end of their own, that such conduct becomes (techni- 
cally) reprehensible. 

Any businesslike management of industry is carried on 
for gain, which is to be got only on condition of meeting 
the terms of the market. The price-system under which 
industrial business is carried on will not tolerate pro- 
duction in excess of the market demand, or without due 
regard to the expenses of production as determined by 
the market on the side of the supplies required. Hence 
any business concern must adjust its operations, by due 
acceleration, retardation or stoppage, to the market con- 
ditions, with a view to what the traffic will bear ; that is to 
say, with a view to what will yield the largest obtainable 
net gain. So long as the price system rules, that is to 
say so long as industry is managed on investment for a 
profit, there is no escaping this necessity of adjusting the 
processes of industry to the requirements of a remuner- 
ative price; and this adjustment can be taken care of only 
by well-advised acceleration or curtailment of the proces- 
ses of industry; which answers to the definition of sa- 
botage. Wise business management, and more particularly 
what is spoken of as safe and sane business management, 
therefore, reduces itself in the main to a sagacious use of 
sabotage; that is to say a sagacious limitation of pro- 
ductive processes to something less than the productive 
capacity of the means in hand. 

To anyone who is inclined to see these matters of usage 
in the light of their history and to appraise them as phe- 
nomena of habituation, adaption and supersession in the 
sequence of cultural proliferation, there should be no dif- 
ficulty in appreciating that this institution of ownership 

326 On the Nature of Peace 

that makes the core of the modern institutional structure 
is a precipitate of custom, like any other item of use and 
wont ; and that, like any other article of institutional fur- 
niture, it is subject to the contingencies of supersession 
and obsolescence. If prevalent habits of thought, en- 
forced by the prevalent exigencies of life and livelihood, 
come to change in such a way as to make life under the 
rule imposed by this institution seem irksome, or intoler- 
able, to the mass of the population; and if at the same 
time things turn in such a way as to leave no other and 
more urgent interest or exigency to take precedence of this 
one and hinder its being pushed to an issue ; then it should 
reasonably follow that contention is due to arise between 
the unblest mass on whose life it is a burden and the 
classes who live by it. But it is, of course, impossible 
to state beforehand what will be the precise line of 
cleavage or what form the division between the two parties 
in interest will take. Yet it is contained in the premises 
that, barring unforeseen contingencies of a formidable 
magnitude, such a cleavage is due to follow as a logical 
sequel of an enduring peace at large. And it is also well 
within the possibilities of the case that this issue may 
work into an interruption or disruption of the peace be- 
tween the nations. 

In this connection it may be called to mind that the 
existing governmental establishments in these pacific 
nations are, in all cases, in the hands of the beneficiary, or 
kept classes, beneficiaries in the sense in which a dis- 
tinction to that effect comes into the premises of the 
case at this point. The responsible officials and their chief 
administrative officers, so much as may at all reasonably 

be called the "Government" or the "Administration," are 

quite invariably and characteristically drawn from these 

Peace and the Price System 327 

beneficiary classes; nobles, gentlemen, or business men, 
which all comes to the same thing for the purpose in hand ; 
the point of it all being that the common man does not 
come within these precincts and does not share in these 
counsels that assume to guide the destiny of the nations. 

Of course, sporadically and ephemerally, a man out of 
the impecunious and undistinguished mass may now and 
again find his way within the gates ; and more frequently 
will a professed "Man of the People" sit in council But 
that the rule holds unbroken and inviolable is sufficiently 
evident in the fact that no community will let the emolu- 
ments of office for any of its responsible officials, even for 
those of a very scant responsibility, fall to the level of the 
habitual livelihood of the undistinguished populace, or in- 
deed to fall below what is esteemed to be a seemly in- 
come for a gentleman. Should such an impecunious one 
be thrown up into a place of discretion in the government, 
he will forthwith cease to be a common man and will be 
inducted into the rank of gentleman, so far as that feat 
can be achieved by taking thought or by assigning him an 
income adequate to a reputably expensive manner of 
life. So obvious is the antagonism between a vulgar 
station in life and a position of official trust, that many a 
"selfmade man" has advisedly taken recourse to govern- 
mental position, often at some appreciable cost, from no 
apparent motive other than its known efficacy as a Levit- 
ical corrective for a humble origin. And in point of fact, 
neither here nor there have the underbred majority hither- 
to learned to trust one of their own kind with governmen- 
tal discretion ; which has never yet, in the popular convic- 
tion, ceased to be a perquisite of the gently-bred and the 

328 On the Nature of Peace 

Let it be presumed that this state of things will con- 
tinue without substantial alteration, so far as regards the 
complexion of the governmental establishments of these 
pacific nations, and with such allowance for overstatement 
in the above characterisation as may seem called for. 
These governmental establishments, are by official position 
and by the character of their personnel, committed more or 
less consistently to the maintenance of the existing law 
and order. And should no substantial change overtake 
them as an effect of the war experience, the pacific league 
under discussion would be entered into by and between 
governments of this complexion. Should difficulties then 
arise between those who own and those who do not, in 
any one of these countries, it would become a nice ques- 
tion whether the compact to maintain the peace and nat- 
ional integrity of the several nations comprised in the 
league should be held to cover the case of internal dissen- 
sions and possible disorders partaking of the character of 
revolt against the established authorities or against the 
established provisions of law. A strike of the scope and 
character of the one recently threatened, and narrowly 
averted, on the American railroads, e. g., might easily 
give rise to disturbances sufficiently formidable to raise a 
question of the peace league's jurisdiction; particularly if 
such a disturbance should arise in a less orderly and less 
isolated country than the American republic; so as un- 
avoidably to carry the effects of the disturbance across 
the national frontiers along the lines of industrial and 
commercial intercourse and correlation. It is always con- 
ceivable that a national government standing on a some- 
what conservative maintenance of the received law and 
order might feel itself bound by its conception of the 
peace to make common cause with the keepers of estab- 

Peace and the Price System 329 

lished rights in neighboring states, particularly if the 
similar interests of their own nation were thought to be 
placed in jeopardy by the course of events. 

Antecedently it seems highly probable that the received 
rights of ownership and disposal of property, particularly 
of investment, will come up for advisement and re- 
vision so soon as a settled state of peace is achieved. And 
there should seem to be little doubt but this revision would 
go toward, or at least aim at the curtailment or abro- 
gation of these rights; very much after the fashion in 
which the analogous vested rights of feudalism and the 
dynastic monarchy have been revised and in great part 
curtailed or abrogated in the advanced democratic coun- 
tries. Not much can confidently be said as to the details 
of such a prospective revision of legal rights, but the an- 
alogy of that procedure by which these other vested rights 
have been reduced to a manageable disability, suggests that 
the method in the present case also would be by way of 
curtailment, abrogation and elimination. Here again, as 
in analogous movements of disuse and disestablishment, 
there would doubtless be much conservative apprehension 
as to the procuring of a competent substitute for the sup- 
planted methods of doing what is no longer desirable to 
be done; but here as elsewhere, in a like conjuncture, the 
practicable way out would presumably be found to lie 
along the line of simple disuse and disallowance of class 
prerogative. Taken at its face value, without unavoid- 
able prejudice out of the past, this question of a substi- 
tute to replace the current exploitation of the industrial 
arts for private gain by capitalistic sabotage is not alto- 
gether above a suspicion of drollery. 

Yet it is 'not to be overlooked that private enterprise 
on the basis of private ownership is the familiar and ac- 

330 On the Nature of Peace 

cepted method of conducting industrial affairs, and that 
it has the sanction of immemorial usage, in the eyes of 
the common man, and that it is reenforced with the ur- 
gency of life and death in the apprehension of the kept 
classes. It should accordingly be a possible outcome of 
such a peace as would put away international dissension, 
that the division of classes would come on in a new form, 
between those who stand on their ancient rights of ex- 
ploitation and mastery, and those who are unwilling longer 
to submit. And it is quite within the possibilities of the 
case that the division of opinion on these matters might 
presently shift back to the old familiar ground of inter- 
national hostilities; undertaken partly to put down civil 
disturbances in given countries, partly by the more ar- 
chaic, or conservative, peoples to safeguard the institutions 
of the received law and order against inroads from the 
side of the iconoclastic ones. 

In the apprehension of those who are speaking for 
peace between the nations and planning for its realisation, 
the outlook is that of a return to, or a continuance of, 
the state of things before the great war came on, with 
peace and national security added, or with the danger of 
war eliminated. Nothing appreciable in the way of coix- 
sequent innovation, certainly nothing of a serious char- 
acter, is contemplated as being among the necessary con- 
sequences of Such a move into peace and security. Na- 
tional integrity and autonomy are to be preserved on the 
received lines, and international division and discrimina- 
tion is to be managed as before, and with the accustomed 
incidents of punctilio and pecuniary equilibration. Inter- 
nationally speaking, there is to dawn an era of diplomacy 
without after-thought, whatever that might conceivably 

Peace and the Price System 331 

There is much in the present situation that speaks for 
such an arrangement, particularly as an initial phase of 
the perpetual peace that is aimed at, whatever excursive 
variations might befall presently, in the course of years. 
The war experience in the belligerent countries and the 
alarm that has disturbed the neutral nations have visibly 
raised the pitch of patriotic solidarity in all these coun- 
tries; and patriotism greatly favors the conservation of 
established use and wont; more particularly is it favor- 
able to the established powers and policies of the national 
government. The patriotic spirit is not a spirit of inno- 
vation. The chances of survival, and indeed of stabilisa- 
tion, for the accepted use and wont and for the tradi- 
tional distinctions of class and prescriptive rights, should 
therefore seem favorable, at any rate in the first instance. 

Presuming, therefore, as the spokesmen of such a peace- 
compact are singularly ready to presume, that the era of 
peace and good-will which they have in view is to be of 
a piece with the most tranquil decades of the recent past, 
only more of the same kind, it becomes a question of im- 
mediate interest to the common man, as well as to all 
students of human culture, how the common man is to 
fare under this regime of law and order, the mass of 
the population whose place it is to do what is to be done, 
and thereby to carry forward the civilisation of these pa- 
cific nations. It may not be out of place to recall, by 
way of parenthesis, that it is here taken for granted as 
a matter of course that all governmental establishments 
are necessarily conservative in all their dealings with this 
heritage of culture, except so far as they may be reac- 
tionary. Their office is the stabilisation of archaic insti- 
tutions, the measure of archaism varying from one to 

332 On the Nature of Peace 

With due stabilisation and with a sagacious adminis- 
tration of the established scheme of law and order, the 
common man should find himself working under condi- 
tions and to results of the familiar kind; but with the 
difference that, while legal usage and legal precedent re- 
main unchanged, the state of the industrial arts can con- 
fidently be expected to continue its advance in the same 
general direction as before, while the population increases 
after the familiar fashion, and the investing business com- 
munity pursues its accustomed quest of competitive gain 
and competitive spending in the familiar spirit and with 
cumulatively augmented means. Stabilisation of the re- 
ceived law and order will not touch these matters; and 
for the present it is assumed that these matters will not 
derange the received law and order. The assumption may 
seem a violent one to the students of human culture, but 
it is a simple matter of course to the statesmen. 

To this piping time of peace the nearest analogues in 
history would seem to be the Roman peace, say, of the 
days of the Antonines, and passably the British peace of 
the Victorian era. Changes in the scheme of law and 
order supervened in both of these instances, but the 
changes were, after all, neither unconscionably large nor 
were they of a subversive nature. The scheme of law 
and order, indeed, appears in neither instance to have 
changed so far as the altered circumstances would seem 
to have called for. To the common man the Roman peace 
appears to have been a peace by submission, not widely 
different from what the case of China has latterly brought 
to the appreciation of students. The Victorian peace, 
which can be appreciated more in detail, was of a more 
genial character, as regards the fortunes of the common 
man. It started from a reasonably low level of hardship 

Peace and the Price System 333 

and de facto iniquity, and was occupied with many prudent 
endeavours to improve the lot of the unblest majority; 
but it is to be admitted that these prudent endeavours 
never caught up with the march of circumstances. Not 
that these prudent measures of amelioration were nuga- 
tory, but it is clear that they were not an altogether ef- 
fectual corrective of the changes going on; they were, 
in effect, systematically so far in arrears as always to 
leave an uncovered margin of discontent with current 
conditions. It is a fact of history that very appreciable 
sections of the populace were approaching an attitude of 
revolt against what they considered to be intolerable 
conditions when that era closed. Much of what kept them 
within bounds, that is to say within legal bounds, was 
their continued loyalty to the nation ; which was greatly, 
and for the purpose needfully, reenforced by a lively fear 
of warlike aggression from without. Now, under the 
projected pax orbis terrarum all fear of invasion, it is 
hopefully believed, will be removed; and with the dis- 
appearance of this fear should also disappear the drag of, 
national loyalty on the counsels of the underbred. 

If this British peace of the nineteenth century is to be 
taken as a significant indication of what may be looked 
for under a regime of peace at large, with due allowance 
for what is obviously necessary to be allowed for, then 
what is held in promise would appear to be an era of un- 
exampled commercial prosperity, of investment and busi- 
ness enterprise on a scale hitherto not experienced. These 
developments will bring their necessary consequences af- 
fecting the life of the community, and some of the conse- 
quences it should be possible to foresee. The circum- 
stances conditioning this prospective era of peace and 
prosperity will necessarily differ from the corresponding 

334 On the Nature of Peace 

circumstances that conditioned the Victorian peace, and 
many of these points of difference it is also possible to 
forecast in outline with a fair degree of confidence. It is 
in the main these economic factors going to condition the' 
civilisation of the promised future that will have to be 
depended on to give the cue to any student interested in 
the prospective unfolding of events. 

The scheme of law and order governing all modern 
nations, both in the conduct of their domestic affairs and 
in their national policies, is in its controlling elements the 
scheme worked out through British (and French) expe- 
rience in the eighteenth century and earlier, as revised and 
further accommodated in the nineteenth century. Other 
peoples, particularly the Dutch, have of course had their 
part in the derivation and development of this modern 
scheme of institutional principles, but it has after all been 
a minor part ; so that the scheme at large would not differ 
very materially, if indeed it should differ sensibly, from 
what it is, even if the contribution of these others had not 
been had. The backward nations, as e. g., Germany, 
Russia, Spain, etc., have of course contributed substan- 
tially nothing but retardation and maladjustment to this 
modern scheme of civil life; whatever may be due to 
students resident in those countries, in the way of schol- 
arly formulation. This nineteenth century scheme it is 
proposed to carry over into the new era; and the re- 
sponsible spokesmen of the projected new order appear to 
contemplate no provision touching this scheme of law and 
order, beyond the keeping of it intact in all substantial 

-" When and in so far as the projected peace at large takes 
effect, international interests will necessarily fall some- 
!what into the background, as being no longer a matter of 

Peace and the Price System 335 

precarious equilibration with heavy penalties in the bal- 
ance ; and diplomacy will consequently become even more 
of a make-believe than today something after the fashion 
of a game of bluff played with irredeemable "chips*." 
Commercial, that is to say business, enterprise will conse- 
quently come in for a more undivided attention and be car- 
ried on under conditions of greater security and of more 
comprehensive trade relations. The population of the 
pacified world may be expected to go on increasing some- 
what as in the recent past ; in which connection it is to be 
remarked that not more than one-half, presumably some- 
thing less than one-half of the available agricultural re- 
sources have been turned to account for the civilised world 
hitherto. The state of the industrial arts, including means 
of transport and communication, may be expected to de- 
velop farther in the same general direction as before, as- 
suming always that peace conditions continue to hold. 
Popular intelligence, as it is called, more properly pop- 
ular education, may be expected to suffer a further ad- 
vance ; necessarily so, since it is a necessary condition of 
any effectual advance in the industrial arts, every 'appre- 
ciable technological advance presumes, as a requisite to its 
working-out in industry, an augmented state of informa- 
tion and of logical facility in the workmen under whose 
hands it is to take effect. 

Of the prescriptive rights carried over into the new era, 
under the received law and order, the rights of owner- 
ship alone may be expected to have any material signifi- 
cance for the routine of workday life ; the other personal 
rights that once seemed urgent will for everyday pur- 
poses have passed into a state of half -forgotten matter-of- 
course. As now, but in an accentuated degree, the rights 
of ownership will, in effect, coincide and coalesce with the 

336 On the Nature of Peace 

rights of investment and business management. The mar- 
ket that is to say the rule of the price-system in all mat- 
ters of production and livelihood may be expected to 
gain in volume and inclusiveness ; so that virtually all 
matters of industry and livelihood will turn on questions 
of market price, even beyond the degree in which that 
proposition holds today. The progressive extension and 
consolidation of investments, corporate solidarity, and 
business management may be expected to go forward on 
the accustomed lines, as illustrated by the course of things 
during the past few decades. Market conditions should 
accordingly, in a progressively increased degree, fall under 
the legitimate discretionary control of businessmen, or 
syndicates of businessmen, who have the disposal of large 
blocks of invested wealth, "big business," as it is called, 
should reasonably be expected to grow bigger and to exer- 
cise an increasingly more unhampered control of market 
conditions, including the money market and the labor 

With such improvements in the industrial arts as may 
fairly be expected to come forward, and with the possible 
enhancement of industrial efficiency which should follow 
from a larger scale of organisation, a wider reach of trans- 
port and communication, and an increased population, 
with these increasing advantages on the side of productive 
industry, the per-capita product as well as the total prod- 
duct should be increased in a notable degree, and the 
conditions of life should possibly become notably easier 
and more attractive, or at least more conducive to effi- 
ciency and personal comfort, for all concerned. Such 
would be the first and unguarded inference to be drawn 
from the premises of the case as they offer themselves in 
the large; and something of that kind is apparently what 

Peace and the Price System 337 

floats before the prophetic vision of the advocates of a 
league of nations for the maintenance of peace at large. 
These premises, and the inferences so drawn from them, 
may be further fortified and amplified in the same sense 
on considering that certain very material economies also 
become practicable, and should take effect "in the absence 
of disturbing causes/' on the establishment of such a peace 
at large. It will of course occur to all thoughtful persons 
that armaments must be reduced, perhaps to a minimum, 
and that the cost of these things, in point of expenditures 
as well as of man-power spent in the service, would con- 
sequently fall off in a corresponding measure. So also, 
as slight further reflection will show, would the cost of 
the civil service presumably fall off very appreciably; 
more particularly the cost of this service per unit of serv- 
ice rendered. Some such climax of felicities might be 
looked for by hopeful persons, in the absence of disturb- 
ing causes. 

Under the new dispensation the standard of living, that 
is to say the standard of expenditure, would reasonably 
be expected to advance in a very appreciable degree, at 
least among the wealthy and well-to-do ; and by pressure 
of imitative necessity a like effect would doubtless also 
be had among the undistinguished mass. It is not a ques- 
tion of the standard of living considered as a matter of 
the subsistence minimum, or even a standard of habitually 
prevalent creature comfort, particularly not among the 
wealthy and well-to-do. These latter classes have long 
since left all question of material comfort behind in their 
accepted standards of living and in the continued advance 
of these standards. For these classes who are often 
spoken of euphemistically as being "in easy circum- 
stances," it is altogether a question of a standard of re- 


338 On the Nature of Peace 

putable expenditure, to be observed on pain of lost self- 
respect and of lost reputation at large. As has been re- 
marked in an earlier passage, wants of this kind are in- 
definitely extensible. So that some doubt may well be 
entertained $s to whether the higher productive efficiency 
spoken of will necessarily make the way of life easier, 
in view of this need of a higher standard of expenditure, 
even when due account is taken of the many economies 
which the new dispensation is expected to make prac- 

One of the effects to be looked for would apparently 
be an increased pressure on the part of aspiring men to 
get into some line of business enterprise; since it is only 
in business, as contrasted with the industrial occupations, 
that anyone can hope to find the relatively large income 
required for such an expensive manner of life as will 
bring any degree of content to aspirants for pecuniary 
good repute. So it should follow that the number of 
businessmen and business concerns would increase up to 
the limit of what the traffic could support, and that the 
competition between these rival, and in a sense over- 
numerous, concerns would push the costs of competition 
to the like limit. In this respect the situation would be 
of much the same character as what it now is, with the 
difference that the limit of competitive expenditures 
would be rather higher than at present, to answer to the 
greater available margin of product that could be devoted 
to this use; and that the competing concerns would be 
somewhat more numerous, or at least that the aggregate 
expenditure on competitive enterprise would be some- 
what larger ; as, e. g., costs of advertising, salesmanship, 
strategic litigatfon, procuration of legislative and munici- 
pal grants and connivance, and the like. 

Peace and the Price System 339 

It is always conceivable, though it may scarcely seem 
probable, that these incidents of increased pressure of 
competition in business traffic might eventually take up 
all the slack, and leave no net margin of product over 
what is available under the less favorable conditions of 
industry that prevail today ; more particularly when this 
increased competition for business gains is backed by an 
increased pressure of competitive spending for purposes 
of a reputable appearance. All this applies in retail trade 
and in such lines of industry and public service as par- 
takes of the nature of retail trade, in the respect that 
salesmanship and the costs of salesmanship enter into 
their case in an appreciable measure ; this is an extensive 
field, it is true, and incontinently growing more extensive 
with the later changes in the customary methods of mar- 
keting products ; but it is by no means anything like the 
whole domain of industrial business, and by no means a 
field in which business is carried on without interference 
of a higher control from outside its own immediate lim- 

All this generously large and highly expensive and 
profitable field of trade and of trade-like industry, in 
which the business men in charge deal somewhat directly 
with a large body of customers, is always subject to 
limitations imposed by the condition of the market ; and 
the condition of the market is in part not under the con- 
trol of these businessmen, but is also in part controlled 
by large concerns in the background; which in their 
turn are after all also not precisely free agents ; in fact 
not much more so than their cousins in the retail trade, be- 
ing confined in all their motions by the constraint of the 
price-system that dominates the whole and gathers them 
all in its impersonal and inexorable net. 

340 On the Nature of Peace 

There is a colloquial saying among businessmen, that 
they are not doing business for their health ; which being 
interpreted means that they are doing business for a 
price. It is out of a discrepancy in price, between pur- 
chase and sale, or between transactions which come to 
the same result as purchase and sale, that the gains of 
business are drawn; and it is in terms of price that 
these gains are rated, amassed and funded. It is neces- 
sary, for a business concern to achieve a favorable bal- 
ance in terms of price; and the larger the balance in 
terms of price the more successful the enterprise. Such 
a balance can not be achieved except by due regard to 
the conditions of the market, to the effect that dealings 
moist not go on beyond what will yield a favorable bal- 
ance in terms of price between income and outgo. As has 
already been remarked above, the prescriptive and indis- 
pensable recourse in all this conduct of business is sabo- 
tage, limitation of supply to bring a remunerative price 

The new dispensation offers two new factors bearing 
on this businesslike need of a sagacious sabotage, or 
rather it brings a change 'of coefficients in two factors 
already familiar in business management : a greater need, 
for gainful business, of resorting to such limitation of 
traffic; and a greater facility of ways and means for 
enforcing the needed restriction. So, it is confidently to 
be expected that in the prospective piping time of peace 
the advance in the industrial arts will continue at an 
accelerated rate; which may confidently be expected to 
affect the practicable increased production of merchant- 
able goods ; from which it follows that it will act to de- 
press the prices of these goods; from which it follows 
that if a profitable business is to be done in the conduct 

Peace and the Price System 341 

of productive industry a greater degree of continence than 
before will have to be exercised in order not to let prices 
fall to an unprofitable figure; that is to say, the per- 
missible output must be held short of the productive 
capacity of such industry by a wider margin than before. 
On the other hand, it is well known out of the experience 
of the past few decades that a larger coalition of in- 
vested capital, controlling a larger proportion of the out- 
put, can more effectually limit the supply to a salutary 
maximum, such as will afford reasonable profits. And 
with the new dispensation affording a freer scope for 
business enterprise on conditions of greater security, 
larger coalitions than before are due to come into bearing. 
So that the means will be at hand competently to meet 
this more urgent need of a stricter limitation of the out- 
put, in spite of any increased productive capacity con- 
ferred on the industrial community by any conceivable 
advance in the industrial arts. The outcome to be looked 
for should apparently be such an effectual recourse to 
capitalistic sabotage as will neutralise any added advan- 
tage that might otherwise accrue to the community from 
its continued improvements in technology. 

In spite of this singularly untoward conjuncture of cir- 
cumstances to be looked for, there need be no serious ap- 
prehension that capitalistic sabotage, with a view to main- 
taining prices and the rate of profits, will go all the way 
to the result indicated, at least not on the grounds so 
indicated alone. There is in the modern development of 
technology, and confidently to be counted on, a contin- 
ued flow of new contrivances and expedients designed 
to supersede the old; and these are in fact successful, 
in greater or less measure, in finding their way into prof- 
itable use, on such terms as to displace older appliances, 

342 On the Nature of Peace 

underbid them in the market, and render them obsolete 
or subject to recapitalisation on a lowered earning-ca- 
pacity. So far as this unremitting flow of innovations has 
its effect, that is to say so far as it can not be hindered 
from having an effect, it acts to lower the effectual cost 
of products to the consumer. This effect is but a partial 
and somewhat uncertain one, but it is always to be counted 
in as a persistent factor, of uncertain magnitude, that 
will affect the results in the long run. 

As has just been spoken of above, large coalitions of 
invested wealth are more competent to maintain, or if 
need be to advance, prices than smaller coalitions acting 
in severalty, or even when acting in collusion. This state 
of the case has been well illustrated by the very successful 
conduct of such large business organisations during the 
past few decades; successful, that is, in earning large 
returns on the investments engaged. Under the new dis- 
pensation, as has already been remarked, coalitions should 
reasonably be expected to grow to a larger size and 
achieve a greater efficiency for the same purpose. 

The large gains of the large corporate coalitions are 
commonly ascribed by their promoters, and by sympa- 
thetic theoreticians of the ancient line, to economies of 
production made practicable by a larger scale of produc- 
tion ; an explanation which is disingenuous only so far as 
it needs be. What is more visibly true on looking into 
the workings of these coalitions in detail is that they are 
enabled to maintain prices at a profitable, indeed at a 
strikingly profitable, level by such a control of the output 
as would be called sabotage if it were put in practice by 
interested workmen with a view to maintain wages. The 
effects of this sagacious sabotage become visible in the 
large earnings of these investments and the large gains 

Peace and the Price System 343 

which, now and again, accrue to their managers. Large 
fortunes commonly are of this derivation. 

In cases where no recapitalisation has been effected for 
a considerable series of years the yearly earnings of such 
businesslike coalitions have been known to approach fifty 
percent on the capitalised value. Commonly, however, 
when earnings rise to a striking figure, the business *will 
be recapitalised on the basis of its earning-capacity, by 
issue of a stock dividend, by reincorporation in a new 
combination with an increased capitalisation, and the like. 
Such augmentation of capital not unusually has been 
spoken of by theoretical writers and publicists as an in- 
crease of the community's wealth, due to savings; an 
analysis of any given case is likely to show that its in- 
creased capital value represents an increasingly profitable 
procedure for securing a high price above cost, by stop- 
ping the available output short of the productive capacity 
of the industries involved. Loosely speaking, and within 
the limits of what the traffic will bear, the gains in such a 
case are proportioned to the deficiency by which the pro- 
duction or supply under control falls short of productive 
capacity. So that the capitalisation in .the case comes to 
bear a rough proportion to the material loss which this 
organisation of sabotage is enabled to inflict on the com- 
munity at large ; and instead of its being a capitalisation 
of serviceable means of production it may, now and 
again, come to little else than a capitalisation of chartered 

Under the new dispensation of peace and security at 
large this manner of capitalisation and business enterprise 
might reasonably be expected to gain something in scope 
and security of operation. Indeed, there are few things 
within the range of human interest on which an opinion 

344 On the Nature of Peace 

may more confidently be formed beforehand. If the 
rights of property, in their extent and amplitude, are 
maintained intact as they are before the law today, the 
hold which business enterprise on the large scale now has 
on the affairs and fortunes of the community at latge is 
bound to grow firmer and to be used more unreservedly 
for. private advantage under the new conditions contem- 

The logical result should be an accelerated rate of ac- 
cumulation of the country's wealth in the hands of a 
relatively very small class of wealthy owners, with a rela- 
tively inconsiderable semi-dependent middle class of the 
well-to-do, and with the mass of the population even more 
nearly destitute than they are today. At the same time 
it is scarcely to be avoided that this wholly dependent and 
impecunious mass of the population must be given an 
appreciably better education than they have today. The 
argument will return to the difficulties that are liable to 
arise out of this conjuncture of facts, in the way of dis- 
content and possible disturbance. 

Meantime, looking to the promise of the pacific future 
in the light of the pacific past, certain further conse- 
quences, particularly consequences of the economic order, 
that may reasonably be expected to follow will also merit 
attention. The experience of the Victorian peace is 
almost as pointed in its suggestion on this head as if it had 
been an experiment made ad hoc; but with the reserva- 
tion that the scale of economic life, after all, was small 
in the Victorian era, and its pace was slack, compared 
with what the twentieth century should have to offer 
under suitable conditions of peace and pecuniary secu- 
rity. In the light of this most instructive modern instance, 

Peace and the Price System 345 

there should appear to be in prospect a growth of well- 
bred families resting on invested wealth and so living 
on unearned incomes ; larger incomes and consequently a 
more imposingly well-bred body of gentlefolk, sustained 1 
and vouched for by a more munificent expenditure on su- 
perfluities, than the modern world has witnessed hith- 
erto. Doubtless the resulting growth of gentlemen and 
gentlewomen would be as perfect after their kind as 
these unexampled opportunities of gentle breeding might 
be expected to engender ; so that even their British pre- 
cursors on the trail of respectability would fall somewhat 
into insignificance by comparison, whether in respect of 
gentlemanly qualities or in point of cost per unit. 

The moral, and even more particularly the aesthetic, 
value of such a line of gentlefolk, and of the culture 
which they may be expected to place on view, this cul- 
tural side of the case, of course, is what one would prefer 
to dwell on, and on the spiritual gains that might be 
expected to accrue to humanity at large from the steady 
contemplation of this meritorious respectability so dis- 
played at such a cost. 

But the prosaic necessity of the argument turns back to 
the economic and civil bearing of this prospective devel- 
opment, this virtual bifurcation of the pacified nation into 
a small number of gentlemen who own the community's 
wealth and consume its net product in the pursuit of 
gentility, on the one hand, and an unblest mass of the 
populace who do the community's work on a meager 
livelihood tapering down toward the subsistence mini- 
mum, on the other hand. Evidently, this prospective pos- 
ture of affairs may seem "fraught with danger to the com- 
mon weal," as a public spirited citizen might phrase it. 
Or, as it would be expressed in less eloquent words, it 

346 On the Nature of Peace 

appears to comprise elements that should make for a 
change. At the same time it should be recalled, and the 
statement will command assent on slight reflection, that 
there is no avoiding substantially such a posture of af- 
fairs under the promised regime of peace and security, 
provided only that the price-system stands over intact, 
and the current rights of property continue to be held in- 
violate. If the known principles of competitive gain and 
competitive spending should need enforcement to that 
effect by an illustrative instance, the familiar history 
of the Victorian peace is sufficient to quiet all doubts. 

Of course, the resulting articulation of classes in the 
community will not be expected to fall into such simple 
lines of sheer contrast as this scheme would indicate. 
The class of gentlefolk, the legally constituted wasters, as 
they would be rated from the economic point of view, 
can not be expected personally to take care of so large 
a consumption of superfluities as this posture of affairs 
requires at their hands. They would, as the Victorian 
peace teaches, necessarily have the assistance of a trained 
corps of experts in unproductive consumption, the first 
and most immediate of whom would be those whom the 
genial phrasing of Adam Smith designates "menial serv- 
ants." Beyond these would come the purveyors of super- 
fluities, properly speaking, and the large, indeed redun- 
dant, class of tradespeople of high and low degree, de- 
pendent in fact but with an illusion of semi-dependence ; 
and farther out again the legal and other professional 
classes of the order of stewards, whose duty it will be 
to administer the sources of income and receive, appor- 
'tion and disburse the revenues so devoted to a traceless 

Peace and the Price System 347 

There would, in other words, be something of a "sub- 
stantial middle class," dependent on the wealthy and on 
their expenditure of wealth, but presumably imbued with 
the Victorian middle-class illusion that they are of some 
account in their own right. Under the due legal forms 
and sanctions this, somewhat voluminous, middle-class 
population would engage in the traffic which is their per- 
quisite, and would continue to believe, in some passable 
fashion, that they touch the substance of things at some- 
thing nearer than the second remove. They would in 
great part appear to be people of "independent means," 
and more particularly would they continue in the hope of 
so appearing and of some time making good the appear- 
ance. Hence their fancied, and therefore their senti- 
mental, interest would fall out on the side of the estab- 
lished law and order ; and they would accordingly be an 
element of stability in the commonwealth, and would 
throw in their weight, and their voice, to safeguard that 
private property and that fabric of prices and credit 
through which the "income stream" flows to the owners 
of preponderant invested wealth. 

Judged on the state of the situation as it runs in our 
time, and allowing for the heightened efficiency of large- 
scale investment and consolidated management under the 
prospective conditions of added pecuniary security, it. is 
to be expected that the middle-class population with "in- 
dependent means" should come in for a somewhat meager 
livelihood, provided that they work faithfully at their 
business of managing pecuniary traffic to the advantage of 
their pecuniary betters, meager, that is to say, when al- 
lowance is made for the conventionally large expenditure 
on reputable appearances which is necessarily to be in- 
cluded in their standard of living. It lies in the nature 

348 On the Nature of Peace 

of this system of large-scale investment and enterprise 
that the (pecuniarily) minor agencies engaged on a foot- 
ing of ostensible independence will come in for only such 
a share in the aggregate gains of the community as it is 
expedient for the greater business interests to allow them 
as an incentive to go on with their work as purveyors of 
traffic to these greater business interests. 

The current, and still more this prospective, case of 
the quasi-self-directing middle class may fairly be illus- 
trated by the case of the American fanners, of the past 
and present. The American farmer rejoices to be called 
"The Independent Farmer." He once was independent, 
in a meager and toil-worn fashion, in the days before the 
price-system had brought him and all his works into the 
compass of the market; but that was some time ago. 
He now works for the market, ordinarily at something 
like what is called a "living wage," provided he has "in- 
dependent means" enough to enable him by steady appli- 
cation to earn a living wage ; and of course, the market 
being controlled by the paramount investment interests 
in the background, his work, in effect, inures to their bene- 
fit; except so much as may seem necessary to allow him 
as incentive to go on. Also of course, these paramount 
investment interests are in turn controlled in all their 
manoeuvres by the impersonal exigencies of the price-sys- 
tem, which permits no vagaries in violation of the rule 
that all traffic must show a balance of profit in terms of 

The Independent Farmer still continues to believe that 
in some occult sense he still is independent in what he will 
do and what not ; or perhaps rather that he can by shrewd 
management retain or regain a tolerable measure of such 
independence, after the fashion of what is held to have 

Peace and the Price System 349 

been the posture of affairs in the days before the coming 
of corporation finance; or at least he believes that he 
ought to have, or to regain or reclaim, some appreciable 
measure of such independence ; wfrich ought then, by help 
of the "independent means" which he still treasures, to 
procure him an honest and assured livelihood in return 
for an honest year's work. Latterly he, that is the com- 
mon run of the farmers, has been taking note of the fact 
that he is, as he apprehends it, at a disadvantage in the 
market ; and he is now taking recourse to concerted action 
for the purpose of what might be called "rigging the mar- 
ket" to his own advantage. In this he overlooks the im- 
pregnable position which the party of the second part, 
the great investment interests, occupy ; in fact, he is count- 
ing without his host. Hitherto he has not been con- 
vinced of his own helplessness. And with a fine fancy 
he still imagines that his own interest is on the side of the 
propertied and privileged classes ; so that the farmer con- 
stituency is the chief pillar of conservative law and order, 
particularly in all that touches the inviolable rights of 
property and at every juncture where a division cornes 
on between those who live by investment and those who 
live by work. In pecuniary effect, the ordinary American 
farmer, who legally owns a moderate farm of the com- 
mon sort, belongs among those who work for a liveli- 
hood ; such a livelihood as the investment interests find it 
worth while to allow him under the rule of what the traf- 
fic will bear ; but in point of sentiment and class conscious- 
ness he clings to a belated stand on the side of those who 
draw a profit from his work. 

So it is also with the menial servants and the middle- 
class people of "independent means," who are, however, 
in a position to see more clearly their dependence on the 

350 On the Nature of Peace 

owners of predominant wealth. And such, with a further 
accentuation of the anomaly, may reasonably be expected 
to be the further run of these relations under the promised 
regime of peace and security. The class of well-kept 
gentlefolk will scarcely be called on to stand alone, in 
case of a division between those who live by investment 
and those who live by work; inasmuch as, for the cal- 
culable future, it should seem a reasonable expectation 
that this very considerable fringe of dependents and 
pseudo-independents will abide by their time-tried prin- 
ciples of right and honest living, through good days and 
evil, and cast in their lot unreservedly with that reputable 
body to whom the control of trade and industry by in- 
vestment assigns the usufruct of the community's pro- 
ductive powers. 

Something has already been said of the prospective 
breeding of pedigreed gentlefolk under the projected 
regime of peace. Pedigree, for the purpose in hand, is a 
pecuniary attribute and is, of course, a product of funded 
wealth, more or less ancient. Virtually ancient pedigree 
can be procured by well-advised expenditure on the con- 
spicuous amenities; that is to say pedigree effectually 
competent as a background of current gentility. Gentle- 
folk of such syncopated pedigree may have to walk cir- 
cumspectly, of course; but their being in this manner 
put on their good behavior should tend to heighten their 
effectual serviceability as gentlefolk, by inducing a single- 
mindedness of gentility beyond what can fairly be ex- 
pected of those who are already secure in their tenure. 

Except conventionally, there is no hereditary differ- 
ence between the standard gentlefolk and, say, their 
"menial servants," or the general population of the farms 

Peace and the Price System 351 

and the industrial towns. This is a well-established com- 
monplace among ethnological students; which has, of 
course, nothing to say with respect to the conventionally 
distinct lines of descent of the "Best Families." These 
Best Families are nowise distinguishable from the com- 
mon run in point of hereditary traits ; the difference that 
makes the gentleman and the gentlewoman being wholly 
a matter of habituation during the individual's lifetime. 
It is something of a distasteful necessity to call attention 
to this total absence of native difference between the well- 
born and the common, but it is a necessity of the argu- 
ment in hand, and the recalling of it may, therefore, be 
overlooked for once in a way. There is no harm and no 
annoyance intended. The point of it all is that, on the 
premises which this state of the case affords, the body 
of gentlefolk created by such an accumulation of invested 
wealth will have no less of an effectual cultural value, 
than they would have had if their virtually ancient pedi- 
gree had been actual. 

At this point, again, the experience of the Victorian 
peace and the functioning of its gentlefolk come in to 
indicate what may fairly be hoped for in this way under 
this prospective regime of peace at large. But with the 
difference that the scale of things is to be larger, the 
peace swifter, and the volume and dispersion of this pros- 
pective leisure class somewhat wider. The work of this 
leisure class and there is neither paradox nor inconsis- 
tency in the phrase should be patterned on the lines 
worked out by their prototypes of the Victorian time, but 
with some appreciable accentuation in the direction of 
what chiefly characterised the leisure class of that era of 
tranquility. The characteristic feature to which at- 
tention naturally turns at this suggestion is the tranquility 

352 On the Nature of Peace 

that has marked that body of gentlefolk and their code 
of clean and honest living. Another word than "tranquil- 
ity" might be hit upon to designate this characteristic 
animus, but any other word that should at all adequately 
serve the turn would carry a less felicitous suggestion of 
those upper-lass virtues that have constituted the substan- 
tial worth of the Victorian gentleman. The conscious 
worth of these gentlefolk has been a beautifully com- 
plete achievement. It has been an achievement of "faith 
without works," of course; but, needless to say, that is 
as it should be, also of course. The place of gentlefolk 
in the economy of Nature is tracelessly to consume the 
community's net product, and in doing so to set a standard 
of decent expenditure for the others emulatively to work 
up to as near as may be. It is scarcely conceivable that 
this could have been done in a more unobtrustively ef- 
ficient, manner or with a more austerely virtuous convic- 
tion of well-doing, than by the gentlefolk bred of the 
Victorian peace. So also, in turn, it is not to be believed 
that the prospective breed of gentlefolk derivable from 
the net product of the pacific nations under the promised 
regime of peace at large will prove in any degree less 
effective for the like ends. More will be required of them 
in the way of a traceless consumption of superfluities 
and an unexampled expensive standard of living. But 
this situation that so faces them may be construed as 
a larger opportunity, quite as well as a more difficult task. 
A theoretical exposition of the place and cultural value 
of a leisure class in modern life would scarcely be in place 
here; and it has also been set out in some detail else- 
where. 1 For the purpose in hand it may be sufficient to 

1 Cf. The Theory of the Leisure Class, especially ch. v. ix. 
and xiv. 

Peace and the Price System 353 

-recall that the canons of taste and the standards of valu- 
ation worked out and inculcated by leisure-class life have 
in all ages run, with unbroken consistency, to pecuniary 
waste and personal futility. In its economic bearing, 
ami particularly in its immediate bearing on the material 
well-being of the community at large, the leadership of 
the leasure class can scarcely be called by a less deroga- 
tory epithet than "untoward." But that is not the whole 
of the case, and the other side should be heard. The 
leisure-class life of tranquility, running detached as it does 
above the turmoil out of which the material of their 
sustenance is derived, enables a growth of all those virtues 
that mark, or make, the gentleman; and that affect the 
life of the underlying commtmity throughout, pervasively, 
by imitation; leading to a standarisation of the everyday 
proprieties on a, presumably, higher level of urbanity and 
integrity than might be expected to result in the absence 
of this prescriptive model. 

Integer vitae scelerisque purus, the gentleman of as- 
sured station turns a placid countenance to all those petty 
vexations of breadwinning that touch him not. Serenely 
and with an impassive fortitude he faces those common 
vicissitudes of life that are impotent to make or mar 
his material fortunes and that can neither impair his crea- 
ture comforts nor put a slur on his good repute. So that 
without afterthought he deals fairly in all everyday con- 
junctures of give and take; for they are at the most 
inconsequential episodes to him, although the like might 
spell irremediable disaster to his impecunious counterfoil 
among the common men who have the comunity's work to 
do. In short, he is a gentleman, in the best acceptation of 
the word, unavoidably, by force of circumstance. As 
such his example is of invaluable consequence to the 

354 On the Nature of Peace 

underlying community of common folk, in that it keeps 
before their eyes an object-lesson in habitual fortitude 
and visible integrity such as could scarcely have been cre- 
ated except under such shelter from those disturbances 
that would go to mar habitual fortitude and integrity. 
There can be little doubt but the high example of the 
Victorian gentlefolk has had much to do with stabilising 
the animus of the British common man on lines of in- 
tegrity and fair play. What else and more in the way of 
habitual preconceptions he may, by competitive imitation, 
owe to the same high source is not immediately in ques- 
tion here. 

Recalling once more that the canon of life whereby folk 
are gentlefolk sums itself up in the requirements of pe- 
cuniary waste and personal futility, and that these re- 
quirements are indefinitely extensible, at the same time 
that the management of the community's industry by in- 
vestment for a profit enables the owners of invested 
wealth to divert to their own use the community's net 
product, wherewith to meet these requirements, it follows 
that the community at large which provides this output of 
product will be allowed so much as is required by their 
necessary standard of living, with an unstable margin 
of error in the adjustment. This margin of error should 
tend continually to grow narrower as the businesslike 
management of industry grows more efficient with ex- 
perience ; but it will also continually be disturbed in the 
contrary sense by innovations of a technological nature 
that require continual readjustment. This margin is 
probably not to be got rid of, though it may be expected 
to become less considerable under more settled condi- 

Peace and the Price System 355 

It should also not be overlooked that the standard of 
living here spoken of as necessarily to be allowed the 
working population by no means coincides with the 
"physical subsistence minimum," from which in fact it 
always departs by something appreciable. The necessary 
standard of living of the working community is in fact 
made up of two distinguishable factors: the subsistence 
minimum, and the requirements of decorously wasteful 
consumption the "decencies of life." These decencies 
are no less requisite than the physical necessaries, in 
point of workday urgency, and their amount is a matter of 
use and wont. This composite standard of living is a 
practical minimum, below which consumption will not 
fall, except by a fluctuating margin of error; the effect 
being the same, in point of necessary consumption, as if 
it were all of the nature of a physical subsistence mini- 

Loosely speaking, the arrangement should leave nothing 
appreciable over, after the requirements of genteel waste 
and of the workday standard of consumption have been 
met. From which in turn it should follow that the rest 
of what is comprised under the general caption of "cul- 
ture" will find a place only in the interstices of leisure- 
class expenditure and only at the hands of aberrant mem- 
bers of the class of the gently-bred. The working popu- 
lation should have no effectual margin of time, energy or 
means for other pursuits than the day's work in the service 
of the price-system; so that aberrant individuals in this 
class, who might by native propensity incline, e. g., to 
pursue the sciences or the fine arts, should have (vir- 
tually) no chance to make good. It would be a virtual 
suppression of such native gifts among the common folk, 
not a definitive and all-inclusive suppression. The state of 

356 On. the Nature of Peace 

the case under the Victorian peace may, again, be taken 
in illustration of the point; although under the pre- 
sumably more effectual control to be looked for in the 
pacific future the margin might reasonably be expected to 
run somewhat narrower, so that this virtual suppression of 
cultural talent among the common men should come near- 
er a complete suppression. 

The working of that free initiative that makes the ad- 
vance of civilisation, and also the greater part of its 
conservation, would in effect be allowed only in the er- 
ratic members of the kept classes; where at the same 
time it would have to work against the side-draught of 
conventional usage, which discountenances any pursuit 
that is not visibly futile according to some accepted man- 
ner of futility. Now under the prospective perfect work- 
ing of the price-system, bearers of the banners of civil- 
isation could effectually be drawn only from the kept 
classes, the gentlefolk who alone would have the disposal 
of such free income as is required for work that has 
no pecuniary value. And numerically the gentlefolk are 
an inconsiderable fraction of the population. The supply 
of competently gifted bearers of the community's culture 
would accordingly be limited to such as could be drawn 
by self-selection from among this inconsiderable propor- 
tion of the community aHarge. 

It may be recalled that in point of heredity, and there- 
fore in point of native fitness for the maintenance and 
advance of civilisation, there is no difference between the 
gentlefolk and the populace at large; or at least there is 
no difference of such a nature as to count in abatement 
of the proposition set down above. Some slight, but after 
all inconsequential, difference there may be, but such 
difference .as there is,, if any, rather counts against the 

Peace and the Price System 357 

gentlefolk as keepers of the cultural advance. The gen- 
tlefolk are derived from business ; the gentleman repre- 
sents a filial generation of the 4 businessman ; and if the 
class typically is gifted with any peculiar hereditary traits, 
therefore, they should presumably be such as typically 
mark the successful businessman astute, prehensile, 
unscrupulous. For a generation or two, perhaps to the 
scriptural third and fourth generation, it is possible that 
a diluted rapacity and cunning may continue to mark 
the businessman's well-born descendants; but these are 
not serviceable traits for the conservation and advance- 
ment of the community's cultural heritage. So that no 
consideration of special hereditary fitness in the well- 
born need be entertained in this connection. 

As to the limitation imposed by the price-system on the 
supply of candidates suited by native gift for the human 
work of civilisation; it would no doubt, be putting the 
figure extravagantly high to say that the gentlefolk, prop- 
erly speaking, comprise as much as ten percent of the 
total population; perhaps something less than one-half 
of that percentage would still seem a gross overstatement. 
But, to cover loose ends and vagrant cases, the gentle- 
folk 1 may for the purpose be credited with so high a 
percentage of the total population. If ten percent be al- 
lowed, as an outside figure, it follows that the community's 
scientists, artists, scholars, and the like individuals given 
over to the workday pursuits of the human spirit, are 
by conventional restriction to be drawn from one-tenth 
of the current supply of persons suited by native gift for 
these pursuits. Or as it may also be expressed, in so 
far as the projected scheme takes effect it should result 
in the suppression of nine (or more) out of every ten 
persons available for the constructive work of civilisa- 

358 On the Nature of Peace 

tion. The cultural consequences to be looked for, there- 
fore, should be quite markedly of the conservative order. 
Of course, in actual effect, the retardation or repres- 
sion of civilisation by this means, as calculated on these 
premises, should reasonably be expected to count up to 
something appreciably more than nine-tenths of the gains 
that might presumably be achieved in the conceivable ab- 
sence of the price-system and the regime of investment. 
All work of this kind has much of the character of team- 
work ; so that the efforts of isolated individuals count for 
little, and a few working in more or less of concert and 
understanding will count for proportionally much less 
than many working in concert. The endeavours of the 
individuals engaged count cumulatively, to such effect that 
doubling their forces will more than double the aggregate 
efficiency; and conversely, reducing the number will re- 
duce the effectiveness of their work by something more 
than the simple numerical proportion. Indeed, an undue 
reduction of numbers in such a case may lead to the total 
defeat of the few that are left, and the best endeavours of 
a dwindling remnant may be wholly nugatory. There is 
needed a sense of community and solidarity, without 
which the assurance necessary to the work is bound to 
falter and dwindle out ; and there is also needed a degree 
of popular countenance, not to be had by isolated individ- 
uals engaged in an unconventional pursuit of things that 
are neither to be classed as spendthrift decorum nor as 
merchantable goods. In this connection an isolated one 
does not count for one, and more than the critical mini- 
mum will count for several per capita. It is a case where 
the "minimal dose" is wholly inoperative. 

There is not a little reason to believe that consequent 
upon the installation of the projected regime of peace 

Peace and the Price System 359 

at large and secure investment the critical point in the 
repression of talent will very shortly be reached and 
passed, so that the principle of the "minimal dose" will 
come to apply. The point may readily be illustrated by 
the case of many British and American towns and neigh- 
bourhoods during the past few decades ; where the domi- 
nant price-system and its commercial standards of truth 
and beauty have over-ruled all inclination to cultural 
sanity and put it definitively in abeyance. The cultural, 
or perhaps the conventional, residue left over in these 
cases where civilisation has gone stale through inefficien- 
cy of the minimal dose is not properly to be found fault 
with ; it is of a blameless character, conventionally ; nor is 
there any intention here to cast aspersion on the desolate. 
The like effects of the like causes are to be seen in the 
American colleges and universities, where business prin- 
ciples have supplanted the pursuit of learning, and where 
the commercialisation of aims, ideals, tastes, occupations 
and personnel is following much the same lines that have 
led so many of the country towns effectually outside the 
cultural pale. The American university or college is corn- 
ing to be an outlier of the price-system, in point of aims, 
standards and personnel ; hitherto the tradition of learn- 
ing as a trait of civilisation, as distinct from business, has 
not been fully displaced, although it is now coming to 
face the passage of the minimal dose. The like, in a 
degree, is apparently true latterly for many English, 
and still more evidently for many German schools. 

In these various instances of what may be called dry- 
rot or local blight on the civilised world's culture the 
decline appears to be "due not to a positive infection of 
a maligant sort, so much as to 9, failure of the active 
cultural ferment, which has fallen below the critical point 

360 On the Nature of Peace 

of efficacy; perhaps through an unintended refusal of a 
livelihood to persons given over to cultivating the ele- 
ments of civilisation; perhaps through the conventional 
disallowance of the pursuit of any others ends than com- 
petitive gain and competitive spending. Evidently it is 
something much more comprehensive in this nature that 
is reasonably to be looked for under the prospective 
regime of peace, in case the price-system gains that farther 
impetus and warrant which it should come in for if the 
rights of ownership and investment stand over intact, 
and so come to enjoy the benefit of a further improved 
state of the industrial arts and a further enlarged scale 
of operation and enhanced rate of turnover. 

To turn back to the point from which this excursion 
branched off. It has been presumed all the while that 
the technological equipment, or the state of the industrial 
arts, must continue to advance under the conditions of- 
fered by this regime of peace at large. But the last few 
paragraphs will doubtless suggest that such a single- 
minded addiction to competitive gain and competitive 
spending as the stabilised and amplified price-system 
would enjoin, must lead to an effectual retardation, per- 
haps to a decline, of those material sciences on which 
modem technology draws; and that the state of the in- 
dustrial arts should therefore cease to advance, if only 
the scheme of investment and businesslike sabotage can 
be made sufficiently secure. That such may be the out- 
come is a contingency which the argument will have to 
meet and to allow for; but it is after all a contingency 
that need not be expected to derange the sequence of 
events, except in the way of retardation. Even without 
further advance in technological expedients or in the 

Peace and the Price System 361 

relevant material sciences, there will still necessarily 
ensue an effectual advance in the industrial arts, in the 
sense that further organisation and enlargement of the 
material equipment and industrial processes on lines al- 
ready securely known and not to be forgotten must 
bring an effectually enhanced efficiency of the industrial 
process as a whole. 

In illustration, it is scarcely to be asumed even as a 
tentative hypothesis that the system of transport and com- 
munication will not undergo extension and improvement 
on the lines already familiar, even in the absence of new 
technological contrivances. At the same time a continued 
increase of population is to be counted on ; which has, for 
the purpose in hand, much the same effect as an advance 
in the industrial arts. Human contact and mutual under- 
standing will necessarily grow wider and closer, and will 
have its effect on the habits of thought prevalent in the 
communities that are to live under the promised, regime 
of peace. The system of transport and communication 
having to handle a more voluminous and exacting traffic, 
in the service of a larger and more compact population, 
will have to be organised and administered on mechani- 
cally drawn schedules of time, place, volume, velocity, 
and price, of a still more exacting accuracy than hither- 
to. The like will necessarily apply throughout the in- 
dustrial occupations that employ extensive plant or pro- 
cesses, or that articulate with industrial processes of that 
nature; which will necessarily comprise a larger pro- 
portion of the industrial process at large than hitherto. 

As has already been remarked more than once in the 
course of the argument, a population that lives and does 
its work, and such play as is allowed it, in and by an 
exactingly articulate mechanical system of this kind will 

362 On the Nature of Peace 

necessarily be an "intelligent'* people, in the colloquial 
sense of the word; that is to say it will necessarily be a 
people that uses printed matter freely and that has some 
familiarity with the elements of those material sciences 
that underlie this mechanically organised system of ap- 
pliances and processes. Such a population lives by and 
within the framework of the mechanistic logic, and is in 
a fair way to lose faith in any proposition that can not be 
stated convincingly in terms of this mechanistic logic. 
Superstitions are liable to lapse by neglect or disuse in 
such a community; that is to say propositions of a non- 
mechanistic complexion are liable to insensible dises- 
tablishment in such a case ; "superstition" in these prem- 
ises coming to signify whatever is not of this mechanistic, 
or "materialistic" character. An exception to this broad 
characterisation of non-mechanistic propositions as "sup- 
erstition" would be matters that are of the nature of an 
immediate deliverance of the senses or of the aesthetic 

By a simile it might be said that what so falls under 
the caption of "superstition" in such a case is subject to 
decay by inanition. It should not be difficult to conceive 
the general course of such a decay of superstitions under 
this unremitting discipline of mechanistic habits of life. 
The recent past offers an illustration, in the unemotional 
progress of decay that has overtaken religious beliefs in 
the more civilised countries, and more particularly among 
the intellectually trained workmen of the mechanical in- 
dustries. The elimination of such non-mechanistic prop- 
ositions of the faith has been visibly going on, but it 
has not worked out on any uniform plan, nor has it over- 
taken any large or compact body of people consistently 
or abruptly, being of the nature of obsolescence rather 

Peace and the Price System 363 

than of set repudiation. But in a slack and unreflecting 
fashion the divestment has gone on until the aggregate 
effect is unmistakable. 

A similar divestment of superstitions is reasonably to 
be looked for also in that domain of preconceptions that 
lies between the supernatural and the mechanistic. Chief 
among these time-warped preconceptions or supersti- 
tions that so stand over out of the alien past among 
these democratic peoples is the institution of property. As 
is true of preconceptions touching the supernatural veri- 
ties, so here too the article of use and wont in question 
will not bear formulation in mechanistic terms and is 
not congruous with that mechanistic logic that is inconti- 
nently bending the habits of thought of the common man 
more and more consistently to its own bent. There is, 
of course, the difference that while no class apart from 
the servants of the church have a material interest in 
the continued integrity of the articles of the supernatural 
faith, there is a strong and stubborn material interest 
bound up \vith the maintenance of this article of the 
pecuniary faith; and the class in whom this material 
interest vests are also, in effect, invested with the coer- 
cive powers of the law. 

The law, and the popular preconceptions that give the 
law its binding force, go to uphold the established usage 
and the established prerogatives on this head; and the 
disestablishment of the rights of property and investment 
therefore is not a simple matter of obsolescence through 
neglect. It may confidently be counted on that all the 
apparatus of the law and all the coercive agencies of 
law and order, will be brought in requisition to uphold 
the ancient rights of ownership, whenever any move is 
made toward their disallowance or restriction. But then, 

364 On the Nature of Peace 

on the other hand, the movement to disallow or diminish 
the prerogatives of ownership is also not to take the in- 
nocuous shape of unstudied neglect. So soon, or rather 
so far, as the common man comes to realise that these 
rights of ownership and investment uniformly work to 
his material detriment, at the same time that he has lost 
the "will to believe" in any argument that does not run 
in terms of the mechanistic logic, it is reasonable to 
expect that he will take a stand on this matter ; and it is 
more than likely that the stand taken will be of an un- 
compromising kind, presumably something in the nature 
of the stand once taken by recalcitrant Englishmen in pro- 
test against the irresponsible rule of the Stuart sovereign. 
It is also not likely that the beneficiaries under these 
proprietary rights will yield their ground at all amicably ; 
all the more since they are patently within their authentic 
rights in insisting on full discretion in the disposal of their 
own possessions; very much as Charles I or James II 
once were within their prescriptive right, which had 
little to say in the outcome. 

Even apart from "time immemoriar and the patent 
authenticity of the institution, there were and are many 
cogent arguments to be alleged in favor of the position for 
which the Stuart sovereigns and their spokesmen con- 
tended. So there are and will be many, perhaps more, 
cogent reasons to be alleged for the maintenance of 
the established law and order in respect of the rights of 
ownership and investment. Not least urgent, nor least 
real, among these arguments is the puzzling question of 
what to put in the place of these rights and of the 
methods of control based on them, very much as the 
analogous question puzzled the public-spirited men of the 
Stuart times. All of which goes to argue that there may 

Peace and the Price System 365 

be expected to arise a conjuncture of perplexities and 
complications, as well as a division of interests and claims. 
To which should be added that the division is likely to 
come to a head so soon as the balance of forces between 
the two parties in interest becomes doubtful, so that either 
party comes to surmise that the success of its own aims 
may depend on its own efforts. And as happens where 
two antagonistic parties are each convinced of the justice 
of its cause, and in the absence of an umpire, the logical 
recourse is the wager of battle. 

Granting the premises, there should be no reasonable 
doubt as to this eventual cleavage between those who 
own and those who do not ; and of the premises the only 
item that is not already an accomplished fact is the in- 
stallation of peace at large. The rest of what goes into 
the argument is the well-known modern state of the in- 
dustrial arts, and the equally well-known price-system; 
which, in combination, give its character to the modern 
state of business enterprise. It is only an unusually 
broad instance of an institutional arrangement which has 
in the course of time and changing conditions come to 
work at cross purposes with that underlying ground of 
institutional arrangements that takes form in the com- 
monplace aphorism, Live and let live. With change set- 
ting in the direction familiar to all men today, it is only 
a question of limitated time when the discrepancy will 
reach a critical pass, and the installation of peace may 
be counted on to hasten this course of things. 

That a decision will be sought by recourse to forcible 
measures, is also scarcely open to question ; since the es- 
tablished law and order provides for a resort to coercion 
in the enforcement of these prescriptive rights, and since 
both parties in interest, in this as in other cases, are 

366 On the Nature of Peace 

persuaded of the justice of their claims. A decision either 
way is an intolerable iniquity in the eyes of the losing 
side. History teaches that in such a quarrel the recourse 
has always been to force. 

History teaches also, but with an inflection of doubt, 
that the outworn institution in such a conjuncture faces 
disestablishment. At least, so men like to believe. What 
the experience of history does not leave in doubt is the 
grave damage, discomfort and shame incident to the 
displacement of such an institutional discrepancy by such 
recourse to force. What further appears to be clear in 
the premises, at least to the point of a strong presumption, 
is that in the present case the decision, or the choice, lies 
between two alternatives: either the price-system and 
its attendant business enterprise will yield and pass out ; 
or the pacific nations will conserve their pecuniary scheme 
of law and order at the cost of returning to a war footing 
and letting their owners preserve the rights of ownership 
by force of arms. 

The reflection obviously suggests itself that this pros- 
pect of consequences to follow from the installation of 
peace at large might well be taken into account beforehand 
by those who are aiming to work out an enduring peace. 
It has appeared in the course of the argument that the 
preservation of the present pecuniary law and order, with 
all its incidents of ownership and investment, is incompa- 
tiable with an unwarlike state of peace and security. 
This current scheme of investment, business, and sabot- 
age, should have an appreciably better chance of survival 
in the long run if the present conditions of warlike prep- 
aration and national insecurity were maintained, or if 
the projected peace were left in a somewhat problemati- 
cal state, sufficiently precarious to keep national animosi- 

Peace and the Price System 367 

ties alert, and thereby to the neglect of domestic interests, 
particularly of such interests as touch the popular well- 
being. On the other hand, it has also appeared that the 
cause of peace and its prepetuation might be materially 
advanced if precautions were taken beforehand to put 
out of the way as much as may be of those discrepancies 
of interest and sentiment between nations and between 
classes which make for dissension and eventual hostili- 

So, if the projectors of this peace at large are in any 
degree inclined to seek concessive terms on which the 
peace might hopefully be made enduring, it should evi- 
dently be part of their endeavours from the outset to put 
events in train for the present abatement and eventual 
abrogation of the rights of ownership and of the price- 
system in which these rights take effect. A hopeful be- 
ginning along this line would manifestly be the neutral- 
isation of all pecuniary rights of citizenship, as has been 
indicated in an earlier passage. On the other hand, if 
peace is not desired at the cost of relinquishing the scheme 
of competitive gain and competitive spending, the pro- 
moters of peace should logically observe due precaution 
and move only so far in the direction of a peaceable set- 
tlement as would result in a sufficiently unstable equili- 
brium of mutual jealousies ; such as might expeditiously 
be upset whenever discontent with pecuniary affairs 
should come to threaten this established scheme of pe- 
cuniary prerogatives. 

The following pages contain 
advertisements of books by the 
same author. 

The Theory of the Leisure Class 

An Economic Study of Institutions. 

Cloth, I2mo, $2.00 

Macmillan Standard Library Edition, $0.50 

It is the purpose of this inquiry to discuss the place and value 
of the leisure class as. an economic factor in modern life, but 
it has been found impracticable to confine the discussion strictly 
within the limits so marked out. Some attention* is perforce 
given to the origin and the line of derivation of the institution, 
as well as to features of social life that are not commonly 
classed as economic. 


Chapter I. Introduction. 
Chapter II. Pecuniary Emulation. 
Chapter III. Conspicuous Leisure. 
Chapter IV. Conspicuous Consumption. 
Chapter V. The Pecuniary Standard of Living. 
Chapter VI. Pecuniary Canons of Taste. 
Chapter VII. Dress as an Expression of the Pecuniary Culture. 
Chapter VIII. Industrial Exemption and Conservatism. 
Chapter IX. The Conservation of Archaic Traits. 
Chapter X. Modern Survivals of Prowess. 
Chapter XL The Belief in Luck. 
Chapter XII. Devout Observances. 
Chapter XIII. Survivals of the Non-Invidious Interest. 
Chapter XIV. The Higher Learning as an Expression of the 
Pecuniary Culture. 

"The study is a thoughtful and interesting one and is couched 
in clear and straightforward English." Minneapolis Journal. 



Publishers 64-66 Fifth Avenue, New York 

The Instinct of Workmanship 

and the State of the Industrial Arts 


Cloth, I2mo, $1. 

"The great problems of cultural history arise from the fact 
that while 'the typical human endowment of instincts' changes 
but little, 'the habitual elements of human life change unremit- 
tingly and cumulatively.' Conflicts are thus frequently produced 
between the stable instincts and the evolving institutions. When 
institutional changes affect materially the ways and means by 
which a race gets its living, the crucial question arises whether 
its instincts will enable it to employ the new means and to live 
under the new institutions which its own progress has created. 
There is, of course, no possibility of solving such a problem by 
changing the instincts. The only way to restore harmony is to 
readjust the scheme of institutions. The possibility of making 
such readjustments is primarily determined by the driving force 
among the people in question of those instincts which make for 
material welfare above all the sense of workmanship and the 
parental bent and the resisting force of institutional bonds. 
'History/ says Mr. Veblen, 'records more frequent and more 
spectacular instances of the triumph of imbecile institutions over 
life and culture than of peoples who have by force of instinctive 
insight saved themselves alive out of a desperately precarious in- 
stitutional situation, such, for instance, as now faces the peoples 
of Christendom. 1 " Quarterly Journal of Economics. 



Publishers 64-66 Fifth Avenue New York 


and the Industrial Revolution 


Cloth, ismo, $1.50 

Chapter I. Introductory: Races and Peoples. 
Chapter II. The Old Order. 
Chapter III. The Dynastic State. 
Chapter IV. The Case of England. 
Chapter V. Imperial Germany. 

Chapter VI. The Industrial Revolution in Germany. 
Chapter VII.-The Economic Policy of the Imperial State. 
Chapter VIII. The Net Gain. 

"Professor Veblen states that this book was projected before 
the war and written during the war. Its aim, he says, is to be 
'a comparison and correlation between the German case on the 
one hand, and the English-speaking peoples, on the other hand, 
considered as two distinct and somewhat divergent lines of the 
cultural development in modern times.' But to most readers 
the book will make a stronger appeal as being a continuation of 
his examination (in The Theory of the Leiswe Class, and The 
Instinct of Workmanship) of the general relation ^ between the 
modern industrial system and the needs and tendencies of human 

"When English commercial handicraft began at the close of 
the middle ages, its processes were, he tells us, in the main bor- 
rowed from the Continent, and because they were borrowed 
without their original fringe of misunderstanding and super- 
stition the English used them more efficiently than did their in- 
ventors. In the same way the Germans, when they borrowed 
from England the new machine-industry of the nineteenth cen- 
tury, had the enormous advantage of knowing with common- 
sense clarity what they were doing. Their equipment was from 
the beginning up to date. 

"In Germany . . . medievalism has not had time to 
die, and we now find the formidable phenomenon of a medieval 
aggressive dynasty wielding the whole material force of a fully 
conscious national machine-industry." 

"In spite of the detachment and restraint with which pro- 
fessor Veblen writes, it is clear that he finds the German im- 
perial system scientifically interesting but morally antipathetic." 
Quarterly Journal of Economics. 



Publishers 64-66 Fifth Avenue, New York