« PredošláPokračovať »
regulations further require that the same respect shall be observed towards the national air of any other country when it is played as a compliment to official representatives of such countries. At every military post or station while the flag is being lowered the band is required to play the "Star-Spangled Banner." Of late years the flag has become in a new sense the National emblem. It floats over every school-house on the continent. When
it appears, heads are always uncovered, and when the "Star-Spangled Banner" is sung not only members of the army and navy rise but all citizens stand. It is the symbol of the history, the spirit, and the aspirations of the Nation.
The principal speaker at the centenary in Baltimore was Mr. Bryan, the Secretary of State. At the close of the formal exercises Mr. Edward Berge's heroic statue of Lieutenant-Colonel Armistead was unveiled, Governor Stuart, of Virginia, delivering the address and giving the facts concerning Colonel Armistead's command of Fort McHenry during the bombardment.
NEW YORK'S FREE MARKETS
"The high cost of living" is a catch phrase to the newspapers, but it is a hard reality to the provider for a family who may not realize all the blessings of peace at home when paying the prices caused by war abroad.
A venture in reducing living expenses by establishing four free markets in the Borough of Manhattan is watched with interest not only by New Yorkers but by wide-awake municipal authorities all over the country. In many American cities municipal markets are not new. Especially in the South, in Washington, Baltimore, and Charleston, they have been known and approved for years. But as a general rule markets have been conducted as much as a source of revenue to the municipality as a convenience to the consumer. The distinguishing point about the Manhattan experiment is that the farmer shall be at no expense to bring his produce directly to the purchaser. Free advertising and free competition, without overhead charges and without any commission to middlemen, are the forces which it is hoped may bring prices down.
War between Germany and Russia was declared on August 1, and on September 1 Borough President Marcus M. Marks, of Manhattan, opened fire on the high soaring
food prices by his three new markets under the city's bridges and one at an uptown ferry landing. The attack on the first day appeared weak and uncertain. At the ferry only one farmer and a few peddlers were in line, and at the other markets conditions were not encouraging. General Marks and his aides did not despair. They felt that the fault lay in the slow mobilization of the rural forces, and that as soon as the farmers could be convinced of the benefits of co-operation success would be assured. Agents were sent out into the country to enlist volunteers, officials of other city departments were pressed into service, while housewives were encouraged to continue their support of the markets.
In less than two weeks the situation had completely changed. Reports from the four camps showed marked advances all along the line of attack. Farm wagons, peddlers, and push-carts were out in force, well supported by eager purchasers weighted down with impedimenta in the shape of market baskets, suit-cases, and leather bags. A system of communication with the rear was established by means of delivery wagons which would carry any parcel of any size for ten cents. One enterprising department store charged the enemy with rapid-fire packages of flour, butter, sugar, and staple groceries put up in small quantities at cost prices. The rivalry between the attacking divisions became acute, and the "latest advices from the front would seem to show that the invaders were retiring slowly to more strongly fortified positions previously selected."
It remains to be seen whether New York's free market system is here to stay. So far the experiment has not cost the taxpayer a penny. The city merely turned over to Mr. Marks unoccupied premises, but the Comptroller refused to release any money, and the Mayor and other officials could only promise hearty encouragement. Private firms have co-operated generously. Free electric lighting and free street car advertising have been provided, and the newspapers have given the plan large publicity, which has made itself directly felt in the daily increasing number of purchasers. Already other boroughs of the city are planning similar ventures.
It is believed that a Commission Bureau of farmers round about New York can be established on the lines of the California Fruit Growers' Association, to be managed by a salaried officer who would sell the goods of the members and return the commissions.
This would serve to standardize commodities and protect prices from too keen competition. Meanwhile the serious question as to winter quarters has arisen, and a plan is on foot to use the city's recreation piers as marketplaces during the winter months.
It would be a curious thing if the miseries and privations that men and women are undergoing on one side of the Atlantic should be the indirect means of giving more plentiful food and a fuller life to others in this country. "Be thankful for your mercies "is a homely adage many Americans are repeating as they scan the horrors in the morning headlines. Industrial depression and the shrinking dollar are serious joy-killers for any nation. New York's experiment with popular markets may prove at least a small part of an argent lining to the heavy cloud overhanging these strifeful days.
Certainly it would be a sorry story if, when peace comes at last, the citizen of New York should return to his old troubles with middlemen and lose the advance in intelligent control of food distribution which he won because of murder and destruction abroad.
The Committee appointed by Mitchel, of New York, to investigate the sudden rise in the prices of foodstuffs following the outbreak of war in Europe has already reported a number of findings which have more than local interest. By no means the least interesting, however, is the finding that ignorance and carelessness on the part of the consumer in making purchases is an important cause of the high price of living in cities. As a result of this report of the Committee it is now proposed to introduce in the public schools of New York courses in marketing in order to teach children, and their parents too, how to compute weights and prices instead of taking the word of the butcher and baker on these important points.
Commissioner Hartigan, of the Bureau of Weights and Measures, who has done much. already to expose the frauds of merchants who cheat the public with false-bottomed measures and scales that have been "doctored," and who was one of the Committee on Food Investigation, estimates for The Outlook that in more than sixty per cent of the families of New York City the purchasing of supplies is done by children.
"These children," says Commissioner
Hartigan, "are often flimflammed or deceived by measures and scales which are constantly growing more complicated. We want to teach the children not only how to buy without being cheated, but also how to buy the most nourishing parts of a beeve, for instance; in other words, how to get in every way the biggest return for the family money."
Through the Mayor's Committee the New York Board of Education has become interested, and a committee of the Board is now looking into ways and means of establishing lectures and courses in scientific marketing. A number of retired butchers and bakers are available as lecturers, and it is planned within a few weeks to have lectures with stereopticons, accompanied with a course in home reading on marketing for the children. ents will be admitted to the lectures, and thus the lesson of economy driven home, it is hoped, to every household. This project has about it all the ear-marks of that common-sense spirit of public service which has characterized so many of the measures of this city administration, which was installed by the Fusion movement of 1913, and The Outlook hopes that it will soon be found to be so practicable that other American cities will begin to teach their housewives how to avoid unnecessary expense in buying.
STREETS FOR PLAY
"If you can't get what you want, make the best of what you have," seems to be the sensible motto of the Parks and Playgrounds Association of New York City. Unable to get a sufficient number of playgrounds to accommodate all the youngsters of the metropolis, the Association, in co-operation with the Police Department, has made temporary playgrounds out of a number of streets in the city. It is nothing new for children to play in crowded city streets, but it is quite novel for boys and girls to be turned loose in streets from which all traffic has been diverted, and to be able to play ball and hop-scotch without fear of horses' hoofs and the wheels of auto-trucks. That is the privilege that some of the children of New York have now, thanks to the Parks and Playgrounds Association and a Police Commissioner whose heart is in the right place.
The late Mayor Gaynor once said: "If I had my way, I would close up every other street and turn it into a playground for the boys and girls.' If he were alive to-day, he would be pleased to see that a start has been
made in the right direction. Parts of seven Manhattan streets are now set aside for children; at three o'clock every afternoon a policeman appears and ropes off the sacred area, into which no vehicle of any sort may come until the ropes are removed at six o'clock and traffic resumed again.
To each "play street" one or more instructors have been assigned who preside over the three-hour sessions of handball, dancing, and other approved pastimes of childhood. From three hundred to six hundred children crowd into each of these recreation blocks every afternoon, and so popular and successful has this experiment in applied sociology proved that it is planned to open other streets soon. The streets chosen for play centers are in crowded residential districts, and are not, of course, streets where much traffic is demanded by business interests. They are, in short, streets that might well be permanently consecrated to the uses of childhood. Mayor Gaynor was right; the modern city is conducted with entirely too much regard for the uses of haggling age and with entirely too little for the interests of rollicking youth.
THE SALE OF GOVERNMENT
An interesting leaflet which we have recently received from the Secretary of the Interior makes The Outlook hopeful that it may see one of its own proposals carried out by the Government. The proposal, made long ago, was that Government publications might easily and profitably be sold at every post-office in the United States. The leaflet to which we refer is a list of pamphlets on the various National parks, most of them illustrated, which can be obtained for cash or post-office money order from the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C. They range in price from five to twenty-five cents, and include panoramic views of the Yosemite and of the Glacier National Parks. The same notification from the Secretary of the Interior announces that various circulars about the Yellowstone, Yosemite, the Mount Rainier, the Glacier National Park, and other parks maintained by the Government may be obtained from his office free of charge. These circulars contain data regarding hotel accommodations, principal points of interest, and lists of books and magazine articles on the various regions. There is unquestionably
information here which many intelligent American citizens would like to have whether they are going to visit the National parks or
Why cannot the Government Printing Office send monthly to every post-office in the United States, to be posted there for the information of the public, a list of the publications of the various Government departments which may be obtained gratis, or on payment of a small sum, if the applicant will give his name and address to the postmaster? This is the suggestion which The Outlook made several years ago, and which it hopes to keep on making until some PostmasterGeneral or Secretary of the Interior becomes interested enough in it to carry it out. The American Government wants its citizens to know what it is doing. Our Cabinet officers have not infrequently complained that the people at large are not aware of what their public servants are accomplishing for the general benefit. Why does the Government not make use of the post-office in this way? If it can be successfully used for savings banks, it can be successfully used for the dissemination of non-political Government information. The present Secretary of the Interior, who was once a newspaper man, who has written the best thing that has been said in recent times about the American flag, and who knows the value of the right kind of publicity, is the very man to put this educational and informative use of the post-office into action.
When peace comes at the end of this war, is it to be a lasting peace or merely an armistice? This is the question which should concern the world. No negotiations for peace will be of service that will tend to emphasize compromise and to submerge justice.
It is reported that an inquiry has been sent from this country to the German Emperor as to whether he would be willing to discuss terms of peace. A similar inquiry, it is also reported, has been made of the British Government. It is hardly necessary to caution our readers with regard to reports of this sort. It is as futile to conduct diplomatic negotiations by newspaper reports as it is to try a suit at law by newspaper editorials. In the one case, as in the other, it is easy for the reader to jump at wrong conclusions through inadequate knowledge of the facts.
Such reports, moreover, do considerable
THE COUNSEL FOR THE DEFENSE
hooves the United States to be wise as well as humane.
Let us be sure that the peace we seek is the peace of justice.
THE COUNSEL FOR THE
The admirers of Professor Eucken read with astonishment his defense of Germany's action in violating her guarantee of Belgium's neutrality. It is as follows:
She [England] was watching only for a favorable opportunity when she could break out suddenly against Germany, and she therefore promptly seized on the invasion of Belgium, so necessary to Germany, in order that she might cover with a small cloak of decency her brutal national egoism. Or is there in the whole wide world any one so simple as to believe that England would have declared war on France also if the latter had invaded Belgium? In that event she would have wept hypocritical tears over the unavoidable violation of international law; but as for the rest she would have laughed in her sleeve with great satisfaction. This hypocritical Pharisaism is the most repugnant feature of the whole matter; it deserves nothing but contempt.
In this defense are two defenses :
I. Germany violated her solemn word because it was necessary to her success.
The Hebrew Psalmist describes a righteous man as one who sweareth to his own hurt and changeth not. According to Professor Eucken, if a nation sweareth to its own hurt it may change without reproach, if the change is necessary to its success. A curious variation of this defense is the statement that a guarantee of neutrality is of no moral force in time of war. Neutrality for a state can exist only in time of war. So that this defense may be tersely put thus: A strong nation may pledge itself to defend the neutrality of a weaker nation in case of war, with the mental reservation that in case of war it will not defend that neutrality if it does not choose.
II. England would have violated its pledge if it had been necessary for her success.
"You're another" is sometimes used by boys in defending themselves against criticism, but all honorable boys scorn that defense. But Professor Eucken's defense of Germany does not rise even to the dignity of "you're another." It is only "We guess you would have done what we did if you had been tempted." There is no ground for thinking
that this is true, but if it were true it would constitute no defense.
We can more easily understand the action of Germany in violating her solemn treaty than we can understand this defense of such violation by a professor of ethics. Perhaps the explanation is the tendency of teachers of ethics to forget morals, and of the teachers of theology to forget religion. The one deal with theories of right and wrong and forget conduct, the other deal with theories of the divine law and forget life. Academic theories taught in the schools and theological theories taught in the pulpit are worse than useless if they are not usable and used in every-day transactions. Professor Eucken has forgotten his own noble characterization of Christianity: "What existed merely in thought has become deed; what was an aim and an ideal has become living reality." In morals thoughts which are not translated into deeds, aims and ideals which are not converted into living realities, deceive both teacher and pupil and hinder the development which they are supposed to promote.
It might be a question for debate whether or not in the present war Germany is merely forestalling a predetermined attack upon her by Russia and France, and is therefore fighting for protection and not for aggression, were it not for the evidence of a longpondered plan for world domination. Outlook summarized lately the volume written by General Bernhardi three years ago, in which this Prussian military officer argued that the issue for Germany was "world power or downfall," and urged the need of striking first. Another confirmation is found in Roland G. Usher's "Pan-Germanism " (Houghton Mifflin Company), published over a year ago. Mr. Usher is Associate Professor of History in the Washington University at St. Louis. He writes not as a partisan, but as a close analyst of forces and causes. The book is extraordinary not only for its clarity but for its wide view of the international situation. For an incisive and readable account of the European situation which preceded the war it may be cordially recommended to The Outlook's readers. Since the book was written the second Balkan War and its consequences and the refusal of Italy to abide by her allies in the Triple Alliance
are the only two great events which would suggest change in the exposition of PanGermanism if the book had been written after the outbreak of war. Add to this that the author is not writing to attack PanGermanism but to explain it, and that he lays full stress upon Germany's need of expansion, lack of opportunity for colonization, and dangers from the aggression of other peoples, and add further that the author has no illusions as to the ethical standards of any of the Great Powers (he puts on his titlepage Madame de Staël's cynical remark, "The patriotism of nations ought to be selfish "), and it will be seen that he is not a prejudiced or fanatical witness.
What, then, is the essence of Pan-Germanism as Professor Usher sees it, of that impulse or purpose which he predicted a year ago might "at any moment result in a war whose consequences would be felt alike by the farmers in North Dakota, the operators in Lancashire cotton-mills, and the savages in the heart of Africa '-a prediction that has been fulfilled to the letter? It is " a defensive movement for self-preservation," but it also aims "to create an empire as little vulnerable politically, economically, or strategically as the world has yet seen." In short, "the Germans aim at nothing less than the domination of Europe and of the world by the Germanic race." And again: "PanGermanism aims at obtaining for Germany and her allies control of the world and at their retention of that control for at least a generation." It has grown from ideas of colonial and commercial expansion into a "determinedly aggressive scheme for the actual forcible conquest of the world." To the same purport Dr. Ernst Richard, a German, said in The Outlook not long since: "The Germans are determined to win at any cost, and after their victory to leave their enemies in such shape that they will never be able to disturb the peace again."
The mere existence of such a scheme of world dominion brings into play forces tending to its defeat. The German war party, supported by militarism and resting on the will of an Emperor of extraordinary personality, has been able to make the plan seem feasible. But Professor Usher says, "That Pan-Germanism, resting upon such a basis, can long withstand the assault of its internal and external enemies seems utterly improbable. Socialism and the stirring of democratic ideals in the German Empire itself, resentment in