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Title:      The Shape of Things to Come (1933)
Author:     H. G. Wells
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A Project Gutenberg of Australia eBook

Title:      The Shape of Things to Come (1933)
Author:     H. G. Wells









1.  A Chronological Note

2.  How the Idea and Hope of the Modern World State First Appeared

3.  The Accumulating Disproportions of the Old Order

4.  Early Attempts to Understand and Deal with These
    Disproportions; The Criticisms of Karl Marx and Henry George

5.  The Way in Which Competition and Monetary Inefficiency Strained
    the Old Order

6.  The Paradox of Over-Production and Its Relation to War

7.  The Great War of 1914-1918

8.  The Impulse to Abolish War; The Episode of the Ford Peace Ship

9.  The Direct Action of the Armament Industries in Maintaining War

10.  Versailles, Seed Bed of Disasters

11.  The Impulse to Abolish War: Why the League of Nations Failed
     to Pacify the World

12.  The Breakdown of "Finance" and Social Morale after Versailles

13.  1933: "Progress" Comes to a Halt



1.  The London Conference: the Crowning Failure of the Old
    Governments; The Spread of Dictatorships and Fascisms

2.  The Sloughing of the Old Educational Tradition

3.  Disintegration and Crystallization in the Social Magma.  The
    Gangster and Militant Political Organizations

4.  Changes in War Practice after the World War

5.  The Fading Vision of a World Pax: Japan Reverts to Warfare

6.  The Western Grip on Asia Relaxes

7.  The Modern State and Germany

8.  A Note on Hate and Cruelty

9.  The Last War Cyclone, 1940-50

10.  The Raid of the Germs

11.  Europe in 1960

12.  America in Liquidation



1.  The Plan of the Modern State Is Worked Out

2.  Thought and Action: the New Model of Revolution

3.  The Technical Revolutionary

4.  Prophets, Pioneers, Fanatics and Murdered Men

5.  The First Conference at Basra: 1965

6.  The Growth of Resistance to the Sea and Air Ways Control

7.  Intellectual Antagonism to the Modern State

8.  The Second Conference at Basra: 1978

9.  "Three Courses of Action"

10.  The Life-Time Plan

11.  The Real Struggle for Government Begins



1.  Gap in the Text

2.  Melodramatic Interlude

3.  Futile Insurrection

4.  The Schooling of Mankind

    (Editor's Note)

5.  The Text Resumes: The Tyranny of the Second Council

6.  Æsthetic Frustration: The Note Books of Ariston Theotocopulos

7.  The Declaration of Mégève



1.  Monday Morning in the Creation of a New World

2.  Keying Up the Planet

3.  Geogonic Planning

4.  Changes in the Control of Behaviour

5.  Organization of Plenty

6.  The Average Man Grows Older and Wiser

7.  Language and Mental Growth

8.  Sublimation of Interest

9.  A New Phase in the History of Life



The unexpected death of Dr. Philip Raven at Geneva in November 1930
was a very grave loss to the League of Nations Secretariat.  Geneva
lost a familiar figure--the long bent back, the halting gait, the
head quizzically on one side--and the world lost a stimulatingly
aggressive mind.  His incessant devoted work, his extraordinary
mental vigour, were, as his obituary notices testified, appreciated
very highly by a world-wide following of distinguished and capable
admirers.  The general public was suddenly made aware of him.

It is rare that anyone outside the conventional areas of newspaper
publicity produces so great a stir by dying; there were accounts of
him in nearly every paper of importance from Oslo to New Zealand
and from Buenos Aires to Japan--and the brief but admirable memoir
by Sir Godfrey Cliffe gave the general reader a picture of an
exceptionally simple, direct, devoted and energetic personality.
There seems to have been only two extremely dissimilar photographs
available for publication: an early one in which he looks like a
blend of Shelley and Mr. Maxton, and a later one, a snapshot, in
which he leans askew on his stick and talks to Lord Parmoor in the
entrance hall of the Assembly.  One of his lank hands is held out
in a characteristic illustrative gesture.

Incessantly laborious though he was, he could nevertheless find
time to assist in, share and master all the broader problems that
exercised his colleagues, and now they rushed forward with their
gratitude.  One noticeable thing in that posthumous eruption of
publicity was the frequent acknowledgments of his aid and advice.
Men were eager to testify to his importance and resentful at the
public ignorance of his work.  Three memorial volumes of his more
important papers, reports, memoranda and addresses were arranged
for and are still in course of publication.

Personally, although I was asked to do so in several quarters, and
though I was known to have had the honour of his friendship, I made
no contribution to that obituary chorus.  My standing in the
academic world did not justify my writing him a testimonial, but
under normal circumstances that would not have deterred me from an
attempt to sketch something of his odd personal ease and charm.  I
did not do so, however, because I found myself in a position of
extraordinary embarrassment.  His death was so unforeseen that we
had embarked upon a very peculiar joint undertaking without making
the slightest provision for that risk.  It is only now after an
interval of nearly three years, and after some very difficult
discussions with his more intimate friends, that I have decided to
publish the facts and the substance of this peculiar cooperation of

It concerns the matter of this present book.  All this time I have
been holding back a manuscript, or rather a collection of papers
and writings, entrusted to me.  It is a collection about which, I
think, a considerable amount of hesitation was, and perhaps is
still, justifiable.  It is, or at least it professes to be, a Short
History of the World for about the next century and a half.  (I can
quite understand that the reader will rub his eyes at these words
and suspect the printer of some sort of agraphia.)  But that is
exactly what this manuscript is.  It is a Short History of the
Future.  It is a modern Sibylline book.  Only now that the events
of three years have more than justified everything stated in this
anticipatory history have I had the courage to associate the
reputation of my friend with the incredible claims of this work,
and to find a publisher for it.

Let me tell very briefly what I know of its origin and how it came
into my hands.  I made the acquaintance of Dr. Raven, or to be more
precise, he made mine, in the closing year of the war.  It was
before he left Whitehall for Geneva.  He was always an eager
amateur of ideas, and he had been attracted by some suggestions
about money I had made in a scrappy little book of forecasts called
What is Coming? published in 1916.  In this I had thrown out the
suggestion that the waste of resources in the war, combined with
the accumulation of debts that had been going on, would certainly
leave the world as a whole bankrupt, that is to say it would leave
the creditor class in a position to strangle the world, and that
the only method to clear up this world bankruptcy and begin again
on a hopeful basis would be to scale down all debts impartially, by
a reduction of the amount of gold in the pound sterling and
proportionally in the dollar and all other currencies based on
gold.  It seemed to me then an obvious necessity.  It was, I
recognize now, a crude idea--evidently I had not even got away from
the idea of intrinsically valuable money--but none of us in those
days had had the educational benefit of the monetary and credit
convulsions that followed the Peace of Versailles.  We were without
experience, it wasn't popular to think about money, and at best we
thought like precocious children.  Seventeen years later this idea
of appreciating gold is accepted as an obvious suggestion by quite
a number of people.  Then it was received merely as the amateurish
comment of an ignorant writer upon what was still regarded as the
mysterious business of "monetary experts."  But it attracted the
attention of Raven, who came along to talk over that and one or two
other post-war possibilities I had started, and so he made my

Raven was as free from intellectual pompousness as William James;
as candidly receptive to candid thinking.  He could talk about his
subject to an artist or a journalist; he would have talked to an
errand boy if he thought he would get a fresh slant in that way.
"Obvious" was the word he brought with him.  "The thing, my dear
fellow"--he called me my dear fellow in the first five minutes--"is
so obvious that everybody will be too clever to consider it for a
moment.  Until it is belated.  It is impossible to persuade anybody
responsible that there is going to be a tremendous financial and
monetary mix-up after this war.  The victors will exact vindictive
penalties and the losers of course will undertake to pay, but none
of them realizes that money is going to do the most extraordinary
things to them when they begin upon that.  What they are going to
do to each other is what occupies them, and what money is going to
do to the whole lot of them is nobody's affair."

I can still see him as he said that in his high-pitched
remonstrating voice.  I will confess that for perhaps our first
half-hour, until I was accustomed to his flavour, I did not like
him.  He was too full, too sure, too rapid and altogether too vivid
for my slower Anglo-Saxon make-up.  I did not like the evident
preparation of his talk, nor the fact that he assisted it by the
most extraordinary gestures.  He would not sit down; he limped
about my room, peering at books and pictures while he talked in his
cracked forced voice, and waving those long lean hands of his about
almost as if he was swimming through his subject.  I have compared
him to Maxton plus Shelley, rather older, but at the first outset I
was reminded of Svengali in Du Maurier's once popular Trilby.  A
shaven Svengali.  I felt he was FOREIGN, and my instincts about
foreigners are as insular as my principles are cosmopolitan.  It
always seemed to me a little irreconcilable that he was a Balliol
scholar, and had been one of the brightest ornaments of our Foreign
Office staff before he went to Geneva.

At bottom I suppose much of our essential English shyness is an
exaggerated wariness.  We suspect the other fellow of our own moral
subtleties.  We restrain ourselves often to the point of
insincerity.  I am a rash man with a pen perhaps, but I am as
circumspect and evasive as any other of my fellow countrymen when
it comes to social intercourse.  I found something almost
indelicate in Raven's direct attack upon my ideas.

He wanted to talk about my ideas beyond question.  But at least
equally he wanted to talk about his own.  I had more than a
suspicion that he had, in fact, come to me in order to talk to
himself and hear how it sounded--against me as a sounding-board.

He called me then a Dealer in the Obvious, and he repeated that not
very flattering phrase on various occasions when we met.  "You
have," he said, "defects that are almost gifts: a rapid but inexact
memory for particulars, a quick grasp of proportions, and no
patience with detail.  You hurry on to wholes.  How men of affairs
must hate you--if and when they hear of you!  They must think you
an awful mug, you know--and yet you get there!  Complications are
their life.  YOU try to get all these complications out of the way.
You are a stripper, a damned impatient stripper.  I would be a
stripper too if I hadn't the sort of job I have to do.  But it is
really extraordinarily refreshing to spend these occasional hours,
stripping events in your company."

The reader must forgive my egotism in quoting these comments upon
myself; they are necessary if my relations with Raven are to be
made clear and if the spirit of this book is to be understood.

I was, in fact, an outlet for a definite mental exuberance of his
which it had hitherto distressed him to suppress.  In my presence
he could throw off Balliol and the Foreign Office--or, later on,
the Secretariat--and let himself go.  He could become the Eastern
European Cosmopolitan he was by nature and descent.  I became, as
it were, an imaginative boon companion for him, his disreputable
friend, a sort of intelligent butt, his Watson.  I got to like the
relationship.  I got used to his physical exoticism, his gestures.
I sympathized more and more with his irritation and distress as the
Conference at Versailles unfolded.  My instinctive racial distrust
faded before the glowing intensity of his intellectual curiosity.
We found we supplemented each other.  I had a ready unclouded
imagination and he had knowledge.  We would go on the speculative
spree together.

Among other gifted and original friends who, at all too rare
intervals, honour me by coming along for a gossip, is Mr. J. W.
Dunne, who years ago invented one of the earliest and most
"different" of aeroplanes, and who has since done a very
considerable amount of subtle thinking upon the relationship of
time and space to consciousness.  Dunne clings to the idea that in
certain ways we may anticipate the future, and he has adduced a
series of very remarkable observations indeed to support that in
his well-known Experiment with Time.  That book was published in
1927, and I found it so attractive and stimulating that I wrote
about it in one or two articles that were syndicated very
extensively throughout the world.  It was so excitingly fresh.

And among others who saw my account of this Experiment with Time,
and who got the book and read it and then wrote to me about it, was
Raven.  Usually his communications to me were the briefest of
notes, saying he would be in London, telling me of a change of
address, asking about my movements, and so forth; but this was
quite a long letter.  Experiences such as Dunne's, he said, were no
novelty to him.  He could add a lot to what was told in the book,
and indeed he could EXTEND the experience.  The thing anticipated
between sleeping and waking--Dunne's experiments dealt chiefly with
the premonitions in the dozing moment between wakefulness and
oblivion--need not be just small affairs of tomorrow or next week;
they could have a longer range.  If, that is, you had the habit of
long-range thinking.  But these were days when scepticism had to
present a hard face to greedy superstition, and it was one's public
duty to refrain from rash statements about these flimsy
intimations, difficult as they were to distinguish from fantasies--
except in one's own mind.  One might sacrifice a lot of influence
if one betrayed too lively an interest in this sort of thing.

He wandered off into such sage generalizations and concluded
abruptly.  The letter had an effect of starting out to tell much
more than he did.

Then he turned up in London, dropped into my study unexpectedly and
made a clean breast of it.

"This Dunne business," he began.

"Well?" said I.

"He has a way of snatching the fleeting dream between unconscious
sleep and waking."


"He keeps a notebook by his bedside and writes down his dream the
very instant he is awake."

"That's the procedure."

"And he finds that a certain percentage of his dream items are--
sometimes quite plainly--anticipations of things that will come
into his mind out of reality, days, weeks, and even years ahead."

"That's Dunne."

"It's nothing."

"But how--nothing?"

"Nothing to what I have been doing for a long time."

"And that is--?"

He stared at the backs of my books.  It was amusing to find Raven
for once at a loss for words.

"Well?" I said.

He turned and looked at me with a reluctant expression that broke
into a smile.  Then he seemed to rally his candour.

"How shall I put it?  I wouldn't tell anyone but you.  For some
years, off and on--between sleeping and waking--I've been--in
effect--reading a book.  A non-existent book.  A dream book if you
like.  It's always the same book.  Always.  And it's a history."

"Of the past?"

"There's a lot about the past.  With all sorts of things I didn't
know and all sorts of gaps filled in.  Extraordinary things about
North India and Central Asia, for instance.  And also--it goes on.
It's going on.  It keeps on going on."

"Going on?"

"Right past the present time."

"Sailing away into the future?"


"Is it--is it a PAPER book?"

"Not quite paper.  Rather like that newspaper of your friend
Brownlow.  Not quite print as we know it.  Vivid maps.  And quite
easy to read, in spite of the queer letters and spelling."

He paused.  "I know it's nonsense."

He added.  "It's frightfully real."

"Do you turn the pages?"

He thought for a moment.  "No, I don't turn the pages.  That would
wake me up."

"It just goes on?"


"Until you realize you are doing it?"

"I suppose--yes, it is like that."

"And then you wake up?"

"Exactly.  And it isn't there!"

"And you are always READING?"

"Generally--very definitely."

"But at times?"

"Oh--just the same as reading a book when one is awake.  If the
matter is vivid one SEES the events.  As if one was looking at a
moving picture on the page."

"But the book is still there?"

"Yes--always.  I think it's there always."

"Do you by any chance make notes?"

"I didn't at first.  Now I do."

"At once?"

"I write a kind of shorthand. . . .  Do you know--I've piles of
notes THAT high."

He straddled my fireplace and stared at me.

"Now you've told me," I said.

"Now I've told you."

"Illegible, my dear sir--except to me.  You don't know my
shorthand.  I can hardly read it myself after a week or so.  But
lately I've been writing it out--some I've dictated.

"You see," he went on, standing up and walking about my room, "if
it's--a reality, it's the most important thing in the world.  And I
haven't an atom of proof.  Not an atom.  Do you--?  Do you believe
this sort of thing is possible?"

"POSSIBLE?" I considered.  "I'm inclined to think I do.  Though
what exactly this kind of thing may be, I don't know."

"I can't tell anyone but you.  How could I?  Naturally they would
say I had gone cranky--or that I was an impostor.  You know the
sort of row.  Look at Oliver Lodge.  Look at Charles Richet.  It
would smash my work, my position.  And yet, you know, it's such
credible stuff. . . .  I tell you I believe in it."

"If you wrote some of it out.  If I could see some of it."

"You shall."

He seemed to be consulting my opinion.  "The worst thing against it
is that I always believe in what the fellow says.  That's rather as
though it was ME, eh?"

He did not send me any of his notes, but when next I met him, it
was at Berne, he gave me a spring-backed folder filled with papers.
Afterwards he gave me two others.  Pencilled sheets they were
mostly, but some were evidently written at his desk in ink and
perhaps fifty pages had been typed, probably from his dictation.
He asked me to take great care of them, to read them carefully,
have typed copies made and return a set to him.  The whole thing
was to be kept as a secret between us.  We were both to think over
the advisability of a possibly anonymous publication.  And
meanwhile events might either confirm or explode various statements
made in this history and so set a definite value, one way or the
other, upon its authenticity.

Then he died.

He died quite unexpectedly as the result of a sudden operation.
Some dislocation connected with his marked spinal curvature had
developed abruptly into an acute crisis.

As soon as I heard of his death I hurried off to Geneva and told
the story of the dream book to his heir and executor, Mr.
Montefiore Renaud.  I am greatly indebted to that gentleman for his
courtesy and quick understanding of the situation.  He was at great
pains to get every possible scrap of material together and to place
it all at my disposal.  In addition to the three folders Raven had
already given me there were a further folder in longhand and a
drawerful of papers in his peculiar shorthand evidently dealing
with this History.  The fourth folder contained the material which
forms the concluding book of this present work.  The shorthand
notes, of which even the pages were not numbered, have supplied the
material for the penultimate book, which has had to be a
compilation of my own.  Generally, Raven seems to have scribbled
down his impressions of the dream book as soon as he could, before
the memory faded, and as he intended to recopy it all himself he
had no consideration for any prospective reader.  This material was
just for his own use.  It is a mixture of very cursive (and
inaccurate) shorthand, and for proper names and so forth, longhand.
Punctuation is indicated by gaps, and often a single word stands
for a whole sentence and even a paragraph.  About a third of the
shorthand stuff was already represented by longhand or typescript
copy in the folders.  That was my Rosetta Stone.  If it were not
for the indications conveyed by that I do not think it would have
been possible to decipher any of the remainder.  As it is, I found
it impossible to make a flowing narrative, altogether of a piece
with the opening and closing parts of this history.  Some passages
came out fairly clear and then would come confusion and obscurity.
I have transcribed what I could and written-up the intervals when
transcription was hopeless.  I think I have made a comprehensible
story altogether of the course of events during the struggles and
changes in world government that went on between 1980 and 2059, at
which date the Air Dictatorship, properly so called, gave place to
that world-wide Modern State which was still flourishing when the
history was published.  The reader will find large gaps, or rather
he will find large abbreviations, in that portion, but none that
leave the main lines of the history of world consolidation in

And now let me say a word or so more about the real value of this
queer "Outline of the Future".

Certain minor considerations weigh against the idea that this
history that follows is merely the imaginative dreaming of a
brilliant publicist.  I put them before the reader, but I will not
press them.  First of all this history has now received a certain
amount of confirmation.  The latest part of the MS. dates from
September 20th, 1930, and much of it is earlier.  And yet it
alludes explicitly to the death of Ivar Kreuger a year later, to
the tragic kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby, which happened in the
spring of 1932, to the Mollison world flights of the same year, to
the American debt discussions in December 1932, to the Hitlerite
régime in Germany, and Japanese invasion of China proper in 1933,
the election of President Roosevelt II and the World Economic
Conference in London.  These anticipations in detail I find a
little difficult to explain away.  I do not think that they are of
such a nature that they could have been foretold.  They are not
events that were deducible from any preceding situation.  How could
Raven have known about them in 1930?

And another thing that troubles me much more than it will trouble
the reader is the fact that there was no reason at all why Raven
should have attempted a mystification upon me.  There was no reason
on earth or heaven why he should have lied about the way in which
this material came to him and he wrote it down.

If it were not for these considerations, I think I should be quite
prepared to fall in with what will no doubt be the general opinion,
that the writing of this History was deliberately chosen by Raven
as an imaginative outlet.  That it is indeed a work of fiction by a
late member of the Geneva Secretariat with unusual opportunities
for forming judgments upon the trend of things.  Or, let us say, a
conditional prophecy in the Hebrew manner produced in a quasi-
inspired mood.  The style in which it is written is recognizably
Raven's style, and there are few of those differences in vocabulary
and locutions that one might reasonably expect in our language a
hundred and seventy odd years from now.  On the other hand, the
attitude revealed is entirely inconsistent with Raven's fully
conscious public utterances.  The idiom of thought at least is not
his, whatever the idiom of expression.  Either his marginal vision
transcended his waking convictions or we have here a clear case of
suppressions making their way to the surface.  Is that what history
is going to be?

I must admit that at first, while I was still under the impression
that the whole thing was a speculative exercise, I was tempted to
annotate Raven's text rather extensively.  I wanted to take a hand
in the game.  In fact I did some months' work upon it.  Until my
notes were becoming more bulky than his history.  But when I
revised them I came to the conclusion that many of them were fussy
obtrusions and very few of them likely to be really helpful to an
intelligent and well-informed contemporary reader.  The more
attracted he was by the book, the more likely he was to make his
observations for himself; the less he appreciated it, the less he
was likely to appreciate a superincumbent mass of elucidation.  My
notes might have proved as annoying as the pencillings one finds at
times in public library books to-day.  If the history is merely a
speculative history, even then they would have been impertinent; if
there is anything more in it than speculation, then they would be a
very grave impertinence indeed.  In the end I scrapped the entire

But I have had also to arrange these chapters in order, and that
much intervention was unavoidable and must remain.  I have had
indeed to arrange and rearrange them after several trials, because
they do not seem to have been read and written down by Raven in
their proper chronological sequence.  I have smoothed out the
transitions.  Later on I hope to publish a special edition of
Raven's notes exactly as he left them.

We begin here with what is evidently the opening of a fresh book in
the history, though it was not actually the first paper in the
folders handed to me.  It reviews very conveniently the course of
worldly events in recent years, and it does so in what is, to me, a
novel and very persuasive way.  It analyses the main factors of the
great war from a new angle.  From that review the story of the "Age
of Frustration", in the opening years of which we are now living,
flows on in a fairly consecutive fashion.  Apart from this
introduction the period covered by the actual narrative is roughly
from about 1929 A.D. to the end of the year 2105.  The last
recorded event is on New Year's Day 2106; there is a passing
mention of the levelling of the remaining "skeletons" of the famous
"Skyscrapers" of Lower New York on that date.  The printing and
publication probably occurred early in the new year; occurred--or
should I write "will occur"?

H. G. W.



1.  A Chronological Note.

2.  How the Idea and Hope of the Modern World State First Appeared.

3.  The Accumulating Disproportions of the Old Order.

4.  Early Attempts to Understand and Deal with These
    Disproportions; The Criticisms of Karl Marx and Henry George.

5.  The Way in Which Competition and Monetary Inefficiency Strained
    the Old Order.

6.  The Paradox of Over-Production and Its Relation to War.

7.  The Great War of 1914-1918.

8.  The Impulse to Abolish War; The Episode of the Ford Peace Ship.

9.  The Direct Action of the Armament Industries in Maintaining War

10.  Versailles, Seed Bed of Disasters.

11.  The Impulse to Abolish War: Why the League of Nations Failed
     to Pacify the World.

12.  The Breakdown of "Finance" and Social Morale after Versailles.

13.  1933: "Progress" Comes to a Halt.



1.  A Chronological Note

In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries the story of mankind upon
this planet undergoes a change of phase.  It broadens out.  It
unifies.  It ceases to be a tangle of more and more interrelated
histories and it becomes plainly and consciously one history.
There is a complete confluence of racial, social and political
destinies.  With that a vision of previously unsuspected
possibilities opens to the human imagination.  And that vision
brings with it an immense readjustment of ideas.

The first phase of that readjustment is necessarily destructive.
The conceptions of life and obligation that have served and
satisfied even the most vigorous and intelligent personalities
hitherto, conceptions that were naturally partial, sectarian and
limited, begin to lose, decade by decade, their credibility and
their directive force.  They fade, they become attenuated.  It is
an age of increasing mental uneasiness, of forced beliefs,
hypocrisy, cynicism, abandon and impatience.  What has been
hitherto a final and impenetrable background of conviction in the
rightness of the methods of behaviour characteristic of the
national or local culture of each individual, becomes, as it were,
a dissolving and ragged curtain.  Behind it appear, vague and dim
at first, and refracted and distorted by the slow dissolution of
the traditional veils, the intimations of the type of behaviour
necessary to that single world community in which we live to-day.

Until the Chronological Institute has completed its present labours
of revision and defined the cardinal dates in our social evolution,
it is best to refer our account of the development of man's mind
and will throughout this hectic period of human experience to the
clumsy and irrelevant computation by centuries before and after the
Christian Era, that is still current.  As we have explained more
fully in a previous book [Nothing of this is to be found in Raven's
notes.--ED.], we inherit this system of historical pigeonholes from
Christendom; that arbitrary chequerwork of hundred-year blocks was
imposed upon the entire Mediterranean and Atlantic literatures for
two thousand years, and it still distorts the views of history of
all but the alertest minds.  The young student needs to be
constantly on his guard against its false divisions.  As Peter
Lightfoot has remarked, we talk of the "eighteenth century", and we
think of fashions and customs and attitudes that are characteristic
of a period extending from the Treaty of Westphalia in C.E.
[Christian Era] 1642 to the Napoleonic collapse in C.E. 1815; we
talk of the "nineteenth century", and the pictures and images
evoked are those of the gas-lighting and steam-transport era, from
after the distressful years of post-Napoleonic recovery to the
immense shock of the World War in C.E. 1914.  The phase "twentieth
century", again, calls forth images of the aeroplane, the
electrification of the world and so forth; but an aeroplane was an
extremely rare object in the air until 1914 (the first got up in
1905), and the replacement of the last steam railway train and the
last steamship was not completed until the nineteen-forties.  It is
a tiresome waste of energy to oblige each generation of young minds
to learn first of all in any unmeaning pattern of centuries and
then to correct that first crude arrangement, so that this long-
needed revision of our chronology is one that will be very welcome
to every teacher.  Then from the very outset he or she will be able
to block out the story of our race in significant masses.

The Chronological Institute is setting about its task with a
helpful publicity, inviting discussion from every angle.  It is
proposing to divide up as much of the known history of our race as
is amenable to annual reckoning, into a series of eras of unequal
length.  Naturally the choice of these eras is the cause of some
extremely lively and interesting interchanges; most of us have our
own private estimates of the values of events, and many issues
affecting the earlier civilized communities remain in a state of
animated unsettlement.  Our chronology is now fairly sure as to the
year for most important events in the last 4,000 years, and, thanks
largely to the minute and patient labours of the Selwyn-Cornford
Committee for Alluvial Research, to the decade for another hundred
centuries.  So far as the last 3,000 years are concerned, little
doubt remains now that the main dividing points to be adopted will
be FIRST the epoch of Alexander and the Hellenic conquests which
will begin the phase of the great Helleno-Latin monetary
imperialism in the western world, the Helleno-Latin Era.  This will
commence at the crossing of the Hellespont by Alexander the Great
and end either with the Battle of the Yarmuk (636 C.E.) or the
surrender of Jerusalem to the Caliph Omar (638 C.E.).  NEXT will
come the epoch of Moslem and Mongol pressure on the West which
opened the era of feudal Christendom vis-à-vis with feudal Islam:
the Era of Asiatic Predominance.  This ends with the Battle of
Lepanto (1571 C.E.).  Then THIRDLY there will follow the epoch of
the Protestant and the Catholic (counter) Reformations, which
inaugurated the era of the competing sovereign states with
organized standing armies: the Era of European Predominance, or, as
it may also be called, the Era of National Sovereignty.  Finally
comes the catastrophe of the World War of 1914, when the outward
drive of the new economic methods the Atlantic civilizations had
developed gave way under the internal stresses of European
nationalism.  That war, and its long-drawn sequelae, released the
human mind to the potentialities and dangers of an imperfectly
Europeanized world--a world which had unconsciously become one
single interlocking system, while still obsessed by the Treaty of
Westphalia and the idea of competing sovereign states.  This mental
shock and release marks the beginning of the Era of the Modern
State.  The opening phase of this latest era is this Age of
Frustration with which we are now about to deal.  That is the first
age of the Era of the Modern State.  A second age, but not a new
era, began with the Declaration of Mégève which was accepted by the
general commonsense of mankind forty-seven years ago.  This closed
the Age of Frustration, which lasted therefore a little short of a
century and a half.

The date upon the title-page for the first publication of this
History is C.E. 2106.  Before many editions have been exhausted
that will be changed to Modern Era (M.E.) 192 or M.E. 189 or M.E.
187, according to whether our chronologists decide upon 1914, the
date of the outbreak of the Great War, or 1917, the beginning of
the social revolution in Russia, or 1919, the signing of the Treaty
of Versailles, as the conclusive opening of the Age of Frustration
and the conflict for world unity.  The second date seems at present
to be the more practicable one.

In C.E. 1914 the concept of an organized world order did not seem
to be within the sphere of human possibility; in C.E. 1919 it was
an active power in a steadily increasing proportion of human
brains.  The Modern State had been conceived.  It was germinating.
One system, the Soviet system in Russia, was already claiming to be
a world system.  To most of the generation which suffered it, the
Great War seemed to be purely catastrophe and loss; to us who see
those hideous years in perspective and in proportion to the general
dulness and baseness of apprehension out of which that conflict
arose, the destruction of life and substance, unprecedented as they
were, has none of that overwhelming quality.  We see it as a
clumsy, involuntary release from outworn assumptions by their
reduction to tragic absurdity, and as a practically unavoidable
step therefore in the dialectic of human destiny.

2.  How the Idea and Hope of the Modern World State First Appeared

The essential difference between the world before the Great War and
the world after it lay in this, that before that storm of distress
and disillusionment the clear recognition that a worldwide order
and happiness, in spite of contemporary distresses, was within the
reach of mankind was confined to a few exceptional persons, while
after the catastrophe it had spread to an increasing multitude, it
had become a desperate hope and desire, and at last a working
conviction that made organized mass action possible.

Even those who apprehended this idea before the epoch of the Great
War seem to have propounded it with what impresses us today as an
almost inexplicable timidity and feebleness.  Apart from the great
star of Shelley, which shines the brighter as his successors
dwindle in perspective, there is a flavour of unreality about all
these pre-war assertions of a possible world order.  In most of
them the Victorian terror of "extravagance" is dominant, and the
writer simpers and laughs at his own suggestions in what was
evidently supposed to be a very disarming manner.  Hardly any of
these prophets dared believe in their own reasoning.  Maxwell Brown
has recently disinterred a pamphlet, The Great Analysis,* dated
1912, in which a shrewd and reasoned forecast of the primary
structure of the Modern State, quite amazingly prescient for the
time, was broached with the utmost timidity, without even an
author's name.  It was a scheme to revolutionize the world, and the
writer would not put his name to it, he confesses, because it might
make him ridiculous.

* (Here for once the editor knows better than the writer of the
history.  This pamphlet was written by William Archer, the dramatic
critic, and reprinted under its author's name with a preface by
Gilbert Murray in 1931.  Apparently the book collectors of the
years ahead are going to miss this book.--ED.)

Maxwell Brown's entertaining Modern State Prophets Before the Great
War is an exhaustive study of the psychological processes by which
this idea, which is now the foundation of our contemporary life,
gradually ousted its opposite of combative patriotism and
established itself as a practicable and necessary form of action
for men of good-will a century and a half ago.  He traces the idea
almost to its germ; he shows that its early manifestations, so far
from being pacific, were dreams of universal conquest.  He tells
of its age-long struggle with everyday usage and practical
commonsense.  In the first of his huge supplementary volumes he
gives thousands of quotations going back far beyond the beginnings
of the Christian Era.  All the monotheistic religions were, in
spirit, world-state religions.  He examines the Tower of Babel myth
as the attempt of some primordial cosmopolitan, some seer before
the dawn, to account for the divisions of mankind.  (There is
strong reason now for ascribing this story to Emesal Gudeka of
Nippur, the early Sumerian fabulist.)

Maxwell Brown shows how the syncretic religious developments, due
to the growth of the early empires and the official pooling of
gods, led necessarily to monotheism.  From at least the time of
Buddha onward, the sentiment, if not the living faith, in human
brotherhood, always existed somewhere in the world.  But its
extension from a mere sentiment and a fluctuating sympathy for the
stranger to the quality of a practicable enterprise was a very
recent process indeed.  The necessary conditions were not

In the briefer studies of human innovations that preceded his more
important contributions to human history, Maxwell Brown has shown
how for the past ten thousand years at least, since the Cro-
Magnards stamped their leather robes and tents, the art of printing
reappeared and disappeared again and again, never culminating in
the printed book and all its consequences, never obtaining a
primary importance in human doings, until the fifteenth century
(C.E.); he has assembled the evidence for man's repeated abortive
essays in flying, from the fourth dynasty gliders recently found at
Bedrashen, the shattered Yu-chow machine and the interesting
wreckage, ornaments and human remains found last year in Mirabella
Bay.  (These last were first remarked in 2104 C.E. after an
earthquake in the deep sea photographs of the survey aeroplane
Crawford, and they were subsequently sought and recovered by the
divers of the submarine Salvemini belonging to the Naples
Biological Station.  They have now been identified by Professor
Giulio Marinetti as the remains of the legendary glider of Dædalus
and Icarus.)  Maxwell Brown has also traced the perpetual discovery
and rediscovery of America from the days of the Aalesund tablets
and the early Chinese inscriptions in the caves near Bahia Coqui to
the final establishment of uninterrupted communications across the
Atlantic by the Western Europeans in the fifteenth century C.E.  In
all there are sixteen separate ineffectual discoveries of America
either from the east or from the west now on record, and there may
have been many others that left no trace behind them.

These earlier cases of human enterprise and inadequacy help us to
understand the long struggle of the Age of Frustration and the
difficulty our ancestors found in achieving what is now so
obviously the only sane arrangement of human affairs upon this

The fruitlessness of all these premature inventions is very easily
explained.  First in the case of the Transatlantic passage; either
the earlier navigators who got to America never got back, or, if
they did get back, they were unable to find the necessary support
and means to go again before they died, or they had had enough of
hardship, or they perished in a second attempt.  Their stories were
distorted into fantastic legends and substantially disbelieved.  It
was, indeed, a quite futile adventure to get to America until the
keeled sailing ship, the science of navigation, and the mariner's
compass had been added to human resources.

Then again, in the matter of printing, it was only when the Chinese
had developed the systematic manufacture of abundant cheap paper
sheets in standard sizes that the printed book--and its consequent
release of knowledge--became practically possible.  Finally the
delay in the attainment of flying was inevitable because before men
could progress beyond precarious gliding it was necessary for
metallurgy to reach a point at which the internal combustion engine
could be made.  Until then they could build nothing strong enough
and light enough to battle with the eddies of the air.

In an exactly parallel manner, the conception of one single human
community organized for collective service to the common weal had
to wait until the rapid evolution of the means of communication
could arrest and promise to defeat the disintegrative influence of
geographical separation.  That rapid evolution came at last in the
nineteenth century, and it has been described already in a
preceding chapter of this world history.  [Not Recorded by Raven.--
ED.]  Steam power, oil power, electric power, the railway, the
steamship, the aeroplane, transmission by wire and aerial
transmission followed each other very rapidly.  They knit together
the human species as it had never been knit before.  Insensibly, in
less than a century, the utterly impracticable became not merely a
possible adjustment but an urgently necessary adjustment if
civilization was to continue.

Now the cardinal prominence of the Great War in history lies in
this, that it demonstrated the necessity of that adjustment.  It
was never considered to be necessary before.  Recognition lagged
behind accomplishment.  None of the pre-war World-State Prophets
betrays any sense of necessity.  They make their polite and timid
gestures towards human unity as something nice and desirable indeed
but anything but imperative.  The clearest demand for world-wide
cooperation before the war, came from the Second International.
And even after the war, and after the vague and vacillating
adumbration of a federal super-state by the League of Nations at
Geneva, most of even the most advanced writers seem to have been
still under the impression that the utmost adjustment needed was
some patching up of the current system so as to prevent or mitigate
war and restrain the insurrectionary urge of the unprosperous.

Even the Communist movement which, as we had told already, had been
able by a conspiracy of accidents to seize upon Russia and
demonstrate the value of its theories there, lapsed from, rather
than advanced towards, cosmopolitan socialism.  Its theories, as we
have shown, were hopelessly inadequate for its practical needs.
The development of its ideology was greatly hampered by the
conservative dogmatism imposed upon it by the incurable egotism of
Marx.  His intolerance, his innate bad manners, his vain insistence
that he had produced a final doctrine to put beside Darwinism, cast
a long shadow of impatience and obduracy upon the subsequent
development of Communism.  He was bitterly jealous of the Utopian
school of socialism, and so, until Lenin faced the urgencies of
power, the "orthodox" Marxist took a quite idiotic pride in a
planless outlook.  "Overthrow capitalism", he said, and what could
happen but millennial bliss?  Communism insisted indeed upon the
necessity of economic socialization but--until it attained power in
Russia--without a glance at its technical difficulties.  It
produced its belated and ill-proportioned Five Year Plan only in
1928 C.E., eleven years after its accession to power.  Until then
it had no comprehensive working scheme whatever for the realization
of socialism.  Thrown back on experiment, it was forced to such
desperately urgent manoeuvres, improvisations and changes of front,
and defended by such tawdry and transparent apologetics, that the
general world movement passed out of its ken.

The reader of this world history knows already how the moral and
intellectual force of the Communist Party proved unequal, after the
death of Lenin, to control or resist the dictatorship of that
forcible, worthy, devoted and limited man, the Georgian, Stalin.
The premature death of the creative and adaptable Lenin and the
impatient suppression by Stalin of such intelligent, troublesome,
but necessary types as Trotsky--a man who, but for lack of tact and
essential dignity, might well have been Lenin's successor--crippled
whatever hope there may have been that the Modern State would first
emerge in Russia.  Terrible are the faithful disciples of creative
men.  Lenin relaxed and reversed the dogmatism of Marx, Stalin made
what he imagined to be Leninism into a new and stiffer dogmatism.
Thereafter the political doctrinaire dominated and crippled the
technician in a struggle that cried aloud for technical competence.
Just as theological disputes impoverished and devastated Europe
through the long centuries of Christendom, and reduced the benefits
of its unifying influence to zero, so in Russia efficiency of
organization was prevented by the pedantries of political
theorists.  The young were trained to a conceit and a xenophobia,
indistinguishable in its practical effects from the gross
patriotism of such countries as France, Germany, Italy or Scotland.

Because of this subordination of its mental development to
Politics, Russia passed into a political and social phase
comparable, as Rostovtzeff pointed out at the time in his Social
and Economic History of the Roman Empire, in its universal
impoverishment and its lack of any critical vigour, to the well-
meaning but devitalizing autocracy of the Emperor Diocletian.  From
its very start the Russian revolution failed in its ambition to
lead mankind.  Its cosmopolitanism lasted hardly longer than the
cosmopolitanism of the great French revolution a dozen decades

This almost inevitable lag of the constructive movement in Russia
behind Western developments was foreseen by the shrewd and
penetrating brain of Lenin even in the phase of its apparent
leadership (see No. 3090 in the thirteenth series of the Historical
Documents Collection, Left Wing Communism).  But his observation
found little or no echo in the incurably illiberal thought of the
Marxian tradition.

It was in Western Europe especially that the conception of the
organized and disciplined World-State as a revolutionary objective,
ultimately grew to its full proportions.  At first it grew
obscurely.  In 1933, any observer might have been misled by the
fact of the Fascist régime in Italy, by the tumult of the Nazi
party in Germany, by similar national-socialist movements in other
countries, and by the increase in tariff barriers and other
restraints upon trade everywhere, to conclude that the cosmopolitan
idea was everywhere in retreat before the obsessions of race, creed
and nationalism.  Yet all the while the germs of the Modern State
were growing, everywhere its votaries were learning and assembling

It needed the financial storm of the years 1928 and 1929 C.E. and
the steadily progressive collapse of the whole world's economic
life, of which this storm was the prelude, to give the World-State
prophets the courage of their convictions.  Then indeed they began
to speak out.  Instead of the restrained, partial and inconclusive
criticism of public affairs which had hitherto contented them, they
now insisted plainly upon the need of a world-wide reconstruction,
that is to say of a world revolution--though "revolution" was still
a word they shirked.  The way in which this increased definition of
aim and will came about is characteristic of the changing quality
of social life.  It was not that one or two outstanding men
suddenly became audible and conspicuous as leaders in this
awakening.  There were no leaders.  It was a widespread movement in
human thought.

The conclusions upon which intelligent people were converging may
be briefly stated.  They had arrived at the realization that human
society had become one indivisible economic system with novel and
enormous potentialities of well-being.  By 1931 C.E. this
conception becomes visible even in the obstinately intellectualist
mind of France--for example, in the parting speech to America of an
obscure and transitory French Prime Minister, Laval, who crossed
the Atlantic on some new undiscoverable mission in that year; and
we find it promptly echoed by such prominent loud speakers as
President Hoover of America and Mr. Ramsay MacDonald the British
Prime Minister.

That idea at any rate had already become sufficiently popular for
the politicians to render it lip service.  But it was still only
the intelligent minority who went on to the logical consequences
of its realization; that is to say, the necessity of disavowing
the sovereignty of contemporary governments, of setting up
authoritative central controls to supplement or supersede them, and
of putting the production of armaments, the production of the main
economic staples and the protection of workers from destructive
under-payment, beyond the reach of profit-seeking manipulation.

Yet by 1932-33 this understanding minority was speaking very
plainly.  These immense changes were no longer being presented as
merely desirable things; they were presented as urgently necessary
things if civilization was to be saved from an immense catastrophe.
And not merely saved.  The alternative to disaster, they saw even
then, was not just a bleak and terrified security.  That was the
last thing possible.  There was no alternative to disorder and
wretchedness, but "such an abundance, such a prosperity and
richness of opportunity", as man had never known before.  (These
words are quoted from a Scottish newspaper of the year 1929.)
Enlightened people in 1932 C.E. were as assured of the possibility
of world order, universal sufficiency and ever increasing human
vitality as are we who live to-day in ample possession of our lives
amidst the practical realization of that possibility.

Clearness of vision did not make for the happiness of the
enlightened.  Their minds were tormented not simply by contemporary
fears and miseries, but by the sure knowledge of a possible world
of free activity within the reach of man and, as it were, magically
withheld.  They saw hundreds of millions of lives cramped and
crippled, meagrely lived, sacrificed untimely, and they could not
see any primary necessity for this blighting and starvation of
human life.  They saw youthful millions drifting to lives of
violence, mutilation and premature and hideous deaths.  And beyond
was our security, our eventfulness and our freedom.

Maxwell Brown, in a chapter called "Tantalus 1932", cites forty
instances of these realizations.  But the legendary Tantalus was
put within apparent reach of the unattainable by the inexorable
decrees of the gods.  Mankind was under no such pitiless destiny.
The world-wide Modern State shone bright upon the living
imaginations of our race within a decade of the Great War, absurdly
near, fantastically out of reach.  For a century of passionate
confusion and disorder, that modern state was not to be released
from potentiality into actuality.

It is to the story of these battling, lost and suffering
generations, the "generations of the half light", that we must now

When now we look back to the scattered and diverse individuals who
first give expression to this idea of the modern World-State which
was dawning upon the human intelligence, when we appraise their
first general efforts towards its realization, we need, before we
can do them anything like justice, to attempt some measure of the
ignorances, prejudices and other inertias, the habits of concession
and association, the herd love and the herd fear, with which they
had to struggle not only in the society in which they found
themselves, but within themselves.  It is not a conflict of light
and darkness we have to describe; it is the struggle of the
purblind among the blind.  We have to realize that for all that
they were haunted by a vision of the civilized world of to-day,
they still belonged not to our age but to their own.  The thing
imagined in their minds was something quite distinct from their
present reality.  Maxwell Brown has devoted several chapters, and a
third great supplementary volume, to a special selection of early
Modern State Prophets who followed public careers.  He showed
conclusively that in the third and fourth decades of the twentieth
century (C.E.) there was a rapidly increasing number of men and
women with a clear general conception of the possibilities of the
modern world.  He gives their written and spoken words, often
astoundingly prescient and explicit.  And then he traces out the
tenor of their lives subsequent to these utterances.  The
discrepancy of belief and effort is a useful and indeed a startling
reminder of the conditional nature of the individual life.

As he writes:  "In the security and serenity of the study, these
men and women could see plainly.  In those hours of withdrawal, the
fragile delicate brain matter could escape from immediacy,
apprehended causation in four dimensions, reach forward to the
permanent values of social events in the space-time framework.  But
even to the study there penetrated the rumble of the outer
disorder.  And directly the door was opened, forthwith the uproar
of contemporary existence, the carnival, the riot, the war and the
market, beat in triumphantly.  The raging question of what had to
be done that day, scattered the fine thought of our common destiny
to the four winds of heaven."

Maxwell Brown adds a vivid illustration to this passage.  It is the
facsimile of the first draft by Peter Raut, the American
progressive leader, of the Revolutionary Manifesto of 1937.  It was
indisputably a very inspiring document in its time and Raut gave
the last proof of loyalty to the best in his mind, by a courageous
martyrdom.  But in the margin of this draft one's attention is
caught by a maze of little figures; little sums in multiplication
and addition.  By his almost inspired gift for evidence and through
the industry of his group of research assistants, Maxwell Brown has
been able to demonstrate exactly what these sums were.  They show
that even while Raut, so far as his foresight permitted, was
planning our new world, his thoughts were not wholly fixed on that
end.  They wandered.  For a time the manifesto was neglected while
he did these sums.  He was gambling in industrial equities, and a
large and active portion of his brain was considering whether the
time had arrived to sell.

3.  The Accumulating Disproportions of the Old Order

Let us consider some of the main appearances that disposed many
minds to expect a world community in the early twentieth century.
In the first place a very considerable financial unity had been
achieved.  The credit of the City of London ran to the ends of the
earth and the gold sovereign was for all practical purposes a world
coin, exchangeable locally for local expenditure within relatively
slight fluctuations.  Economic life was becoming very generalized.
Over great areas trade moved with but small impediments, and the
British still hoped to see their cosmopolitan conception of Free
Trade accepted by the whole world.  The International Institute of
Agriculture in Rome was developing an annual census of staple
production and reaching out towards a world control of commodity
transport.  Considerable movements and readjustments of population
were going on, unimpeded by any government interference.  Swarms of
Russian Poles, for instance, drifted into Eastern Germany for the
harvest work and returned; hundreds of thousands of Italians went
to work in the United States for a few years and then came back
with their earnings to their native villages.  An ordinary
traveller might go all over the more settled parts of the earth and
never be asked for a passport unless he wanted to obtain a
registered letter at a post office or otherwise prove his identity.

A number of minor but significant federal services had also come
into existence and had a sound legal standing throughout the world,
the Postal Union for example.  Before 1914 C.E. a written document
was delivered into the hands of the addressee at almost every point
upon the planet, almost as surely as, if less swiftly than, it is
to-day.  (The Historical Documents Board has recently reprinted a
small book, International Government, prepared for the little old
Fabian Society during the Great War period by L. S. Woolf, which
gives a summary of such arrangements.  He lists twenty-three
important world unions dealing at that time with trade, industry,
finance, communications, health, science, art, literature, drugs,
brothels, criminals, emigration and immigration and minor political
affairs.)  These world-wide cooperations seemed--more particularly
to the English-speaking peoples--to presage a direct and
comparatively smooth transition from the political patchwork of the
nineteenth century, as the divisions of the patchwork grew
insensibly fainter, to a stable confederation of mankind.  The idea
of a coming World-State was quite familiar at the time--one finds
it, for instance, as early as Lord Tennyson's Locksley Hall
(published in 1842); but there was no effort whatever to achieve
it, and indeed no sense of the need of such effort.  The World-
State was expected to come about automatically by the inherent
forces in things.

That belief in some underlying benevolence in uncontrolled events
was a common error, one might almost say THE common error, of the
time.  It affected every school of thought.  In exactly the same
fashion the followers of Marx (before the invigorating advent of
Lenin and the Bolshevist reconstruction of Communism) regarded
their dream of world communism as inevitable, and the disciples
of Herbert Spencer found a benevolent Providence in "free
competition".  "Trust Evolution", said the extreme Socialist and
the extreme Individualist, as piously as the Christians put their
trust in God.  It was the Bolshevik movement in the twentieth
century which put will into Communism.  The thought of the
nineteenth century revolutionary and reactionary alike was
saturated with that confident irresponsible laziness.  As Professor
K. Chandra Sen has remarked, hope in the Victorian period was not a
stimulant but an opiate.

We who live in a disciplined order, the chastened victors of a
hard-fought battle, understand how superficial and unsubstantial
were all those hopeful appearances.  The great processes of
mechanical invention, which have been described in our general
account of the release of experimental science from deductive
intellectualism, were increasing the power and range of every
operating material force quite irrespective of its fitness or
unfitness for the new occasions of mankind.  With an equal
impartiality they were bringing world-wide understanding and world-
wide massacre into the range of human possibility.

It was through no fault of these inventors and investigators that
the new opportunities they created were misused.  That was outside
their range.  They had as yet no common culture of their own.  Nor,
since each worked in his own field, were they responsible for the
fragmentary irregularity of their discoveries.  Biological and
especially social invention were lagging far behind the practical
advances of the exacter, simpler sciences.  Their application was
more difficult; the matters they affected were so much more deeply
embedded in ordinary use and wont, variation was more intimate,
novelties could not be inserted with the same freedom.  It was easy
to supplant the coach and horses on the macadamized road by the
steam-engine or the railway, because it was not necessary to do
anything to the road or the coach and horses to bring about the
change.  They were just left alone to run themselves out as the
railroad (and later the automobile on the rubber-glass track)
superseded them.  But men cannot set up new social institutions,
new social and political and industrial relationships, side by side
with the old in that fashion.  It must be an altogether tougher and
slower job.  It is a question not of ousting but of reconstruction.
The old must be converted into the new without ceasing for a moment
to be a going concern.  The over-running of the biologically old by
the mechanically new, due to these differences in timing, was
inevitable, and it reached its maximum in the twentieth century.

A pathological analogy may be useful here.  In the past, before the
correlation of development in living organisms began to be studied,
people used to suffer helplessly and often very dreadfully from all
sorts of irregularities of growth in their bodies.  The medical
services of the time, such as they were, were quite unable to
control them.  One of these, due to what is called the Nurmi ratios
in the blood, was a great overproduction of bone, either locally or
generally.  The suffered gradually underwent distortion into a
clumsy caricature of his former self; his features became coarse
and massive, his skull bones underwent a monstrous expansion; the
proportions of his limbs altered, and the leverage of his muscles
went askew.  He was made to look grotesque; he was crippled and at
last killed.  Something strictly parallel happened to human society
in the hundred years before the Great War.  Under the stimulus of
mechanical invention and experimental physics it achieved, to
pursue our metaphor, a hypertrophy of bone, muscle and stomach,
without any corresponding enlargement of its nervous controls.

Long before the Great War this progressive disproportion had been
dimly recognized by many observers.  The favourite formula was to
declare that "spiritual"--for the naïve primordial opposition of
spirit and matter was still accepted in those days--had not kept
pace with "material" advance.  This was usually said with an air of
moral superiority to the world at large.  Mostly there was a vague
implication that if these other people would only refrain from
using modern inventions so briskly, or go to church more, or marry
earlier and artlessly, or read a more "spiritual" type of
literature, or refrain from mixed bathing, or work harder and
accept lower wages, or be more respectful and obedient to
constituted authority, all might yet be well.  Beyond this sort of
thing there was little recognition of the great and increasing
disharmonies of the social corpus until after the Great War.

The young reader will ask, "But where was the Central Observation
Bureau?  Where was the professorial and student body which should
have been recording these irregularities and producing plans for

There was no Central Observation Bureau.  That did not exist for
another century.  That complex organization of discussion,
calculation, criticism and forecast was undreamt of.  Those cities
of thought, full of serene activities, came into existence only
after the organization of the Record and Library Network under the
Air Dictatorship between 2010 and 2030.  Even the mother thought-
city, the World Encyclopædia Establishment, was not founded until
2012.  In the early twentieth century there was still no adequate
estimate of economic forces and their social reactions.  There were
only a few score professors and amateurs of these fundamentally
important studies scattered throughout the earth.  They were
scattered in every sense; even their communications were
unsystematic.  They had no powers of enquiry, no adequate
statistics, little prestige; few people heeded what they thought or

Maybe they deserved nothing better.  They bickered stupidly with
and discredited each other.  They ignored or wilfully misunderstood
each other.  It is impossible to read such social and economic
literature as the period produced without realizing the
extraordinary backwardness of that side of the world's intellectual
life.  It is difficult to believe nowadays that the writers of
these publications, at once tediously copious and incredibly
jejune, were living at the same time as the lively multitude of
workers in the experimental sciences which were daily adding to and
reshaping knowledge to achieve fresh practical triumphs.  From 1812
C.E., when public gas-lighting was first organized, to the outbreak
of the Great War, while the world was being made over anew by gas,
by steam, by oil, and then by the swift headlong development of
electrical science, while the last terræ incognitæ were being
explored and mapped, while a multitude of hitherto unthought-of
elements and compounds and hundreds of thousands of new substances
were coming into use, while epidemic diseases were being restrained
and driven back, while the death rate was being halved, and the
average duration of life increased by a score of years, the social
and political sciences remained practically stagnant and
unserviceable.  Throughout that century of material achievement
there is no single instance of the successful application of a
social, economic or educational generalization.

Because of this belatedness of the social sciences, the progressive
dislocation of the refined if socially limited and precarious
civilization of the more advanced of the eighteenth and nineteenth
century sovereign states went on without any effectual contemporary
understanding of what was straining it to pieces.  The Europeans
and the Americans of the early twentieth century apprehended the
social and political forces that ravaged their lives hardly more
clearly than the citizens of the Roman Empire during its collapse.
Plenty and the appearance of security HAPPENED; then débâcle
HAPPENED.  There was no analysis of operating causes.  For years
even quite bold and advanced thinkers were chased by events.  They
did not grasp what was occurring at the time.  They only realized
what had really occurred long afterwards.  And so they never
foresaw.  There was no foresight, and therefore still less could
there be any understanding control.

4.  Early Attempts to Understand and Deal with These
    Disproportions; The Criticisms of Karl Marx and Henry George

There are, however, one or two exceptions to this general absence
of diagnosis in the affairs of the nineteenth and twentieth century
of the Christian Era, which even the student of general history
cannot ignore.  Prominent among them is the analysis and forecasts
of economic development made by Karl Marx and his associates.

In any case Marxism would have demanded our attention as a curious
contemporary realization of the self-destroying elements in the
business methods of the nineteenth century; but its accidental
selection as the ostensible creed of revolutionary Russia after the
Tzarist collapse gives it an almost primary importance in the
history of kinetic ideas.

Karl Marx (1818-1883) was the son of a christianized Jewish lawyer
of Treves, of considerable social pretensions; he had an excellent
university career at Bonn and Berlin, assimilated the radical
thought of his time and became the lifelong friend of the far more
modest and gifted Friedrich Engels (1820-1895), a Lancashire calico
dealer.  Under the inspiration of Engels and the English socialist
movement of Robert Owen, Marx elaborated the theory of economic
development which is the substance of Marxism.  It is embodied in a
huge unfinished work, Das Kapital, and summarized in a Communist
Manifesto (1848) drawn up by Engels and himself.  (These, and
indeed all his writings, together with an able digest and summary,
are to be found in the Library of Historical Thought, vols. 17252-
9.)  His chief merit lies in his clear recognition of the ultimate
dependence of social and political forms and reactions upon
physical necessity.  ("The Materialist Conception of History".)
His chief fault was his insane hatred of the middle classes
(bourgeoisie), due mainly to his pose as a needy aristocrat and
embittered, it may be, by his material and intellectual dependence
on the trader Engels.  His own attempts to apply his theories by
conspiracy and political action were inept and futile.  He died in
London a disappointed and resentful man, quite unaware of the
posthumous fame that awaited his doctrines.  It was the
organization of his followers into the disciplined Communist Party
and the modernization of his doctrines by the genius of Lenin that
made his name a cardinal one in history.

It is interesting to consider his general propositions now in the
light of accomplished events and note the hits and misses of those
heroic speculations--heroic, that is to say, measured by the mental
courage of the time.

Nowadays every schoolboy knows that the essential and permanent
conflict in life is a conflict between the past and the future,
between the accomplished past and the forward effort.  He is made
to realize this conflict in his primary biological course.  Therein
he comes to see and in part to understand the continual automatic
struggle of the thing achieved, to hold the new, the new-born
individual, the new-born idea, the widening needs of the species,
in thrall.  This conflict he is shown runs through all history.  In
the old classical mythology Saturn, the Conservative head-god,
devoured all his children until at last one escaped to become Jove.
And of how Jove bound Prometheus in his turn every lover of Shelley
can tell.  We need only refer the student to the recorded struggles
in the histories of Republican Rome and Judæa between debtor and
creditor; to the plebeian Secessions of the former and the year of
Jubilee of the latter; to the legend of Joseph in Egypt (so richly
interpreted now through the minute study of contemporary Egyptian
documents by the students of the Breasted Commemoration Fund); to
the English Statute of Mortmain; to Austen Livewright's lucid study
of Bankruptcy Through the Ages (1979), to remind him of this
perennial struggle of life against the creditor and the dead hand.
But Marx, like most of his contemporaries, was profoundly ignorant
of historical science, and addicted to a queer "dialectic" devised
by the pseudo-philosopher Hegel; his ill-equipped mind apprehended
this perennial antagonism only in terms of the finance of the
industrial production about him; the entrepreneur, the capitalist,
became the villain of his piece, using the prior advantage of his
capital to appropriate the "surplus value" of production, so that
his share of purchasing power became more and more disproportionately

Marx seems never to have distinguished clearly between restrictive
and productive possessions, which nowadays we recognize as a
difference of fundamental importance.  Exploitation for profit and
strangulation for dominance, the radical son and the conservative
father, were all one to him.  And his proposals for expropriating
the profit-seeking "Capitalist" were of the vaguest; he betrayed no
conception whatever of the real psychology of economic activities,
and he had no sense of the intricate organization of motives needed
if the coarse incentive of profit was to be superseded.  Indeed, he
had no practical capacity at all, and one is not surprised to learn
that for his own part he never earned a living.  He claimed all the
privileges of a prophet and all the laxity and indolence of a
genius, and he never even completed his great book.

It was the far abler and finer-minded Lenin (1870-1924, in power in
Russia after 1917), rather than Marx, who gave a practical
organization to the revolutionary forces of Communism and made the
Communist Party for a time, until Stalin overtook it, the most
vital creative force in the world.  The essential intellectual
difference between these two men is explained very clearly by Max
Eastman (1895-1980), whose compact and scholarly Marx and Lenin is
still quite readable by the contemporary student.  In his time
Lenin had to pose as the disciple and exponent of Marx; it was only
later that criticism revealed the subtle brilliance of his effort
to wrest a practical commonsense out of the time-worn doctrines of
the older prophet.

Another nineteenth-century writer, with perhaps a clearer
realization of the strangulating effect of restrictive property as
distinguished from the stimulating effect of exploitation, was
Henry George (1839-1897), an American printer who rose to great
popularity as a writer upon economic questions.  He saw the life of
mankind limited and dwarfed by the continual rise in rents.  His
naïve remedy was to tax the landowner, as Marx's naïve remedy was
to expropriate the capitalist, and just as Marx never gave his
disciples the ghost of an idea for a competent administration of
the expropriated economic plant and resources of the world, so
Henry George never indicated how, in the world of implacable
individualism he advocated, the taxing authority was to find a use
for its ever-increasing tax receipts.

We can smile to-day at the limitations of these early pioneers.
But we smile only because we live later than they did, and are two
centuries and more to the good in our experience.  We owe them
enormous gratitude for the valiant disinterestedness of their life

Our debt is on the whole rather for what they got rid of than for
what they did.  The broad outlines of the world's economic life are
fairly simple as we see them frankly exposed to-day, but these men
were born into an atmosphere of uncriticized usage, secrecy, time-
honoured misconceptions, fetishisms, working fictions--which often
worked very badly--and almost insane suppressions of thought and
statement.  The very terms they were obliged to use were question-
begging terms; the habitual assumptions of the world they addressed
were crooked and only to be apprehended with obliquity and
inconsistency.  They were forcing their minds towards the
expression of reality through an intricate mental and moral tangle.
They destroyed the current assumption of permanence in established
institutions and usages, and though that seems a small thing to us
now, it was a profoundly important release at the time.  The
infantile habit of assuming the fixity of the Thing that Is was
almost universal in their day.

The Marxist doctrines did at least indicate that a term was
necessarily set to economic development through profit-seeking, by
the concentration of controlling ownership, by the progressive
relative impoverishment of larger and larger sections of the world
population and by the consequent final dwindling of markets.  The
rapid coagulation of human activities after 1928 C.E. was widely
recognized as a confirmation of the Marxian forecast, and by one of
those rapid mental leaps characteristic of the time, as a complete
endorsement of the Communist pretension to have solved the social

Unembarrassed as we are now by the mental clutter of our
forefathers, the fundamental processes at work during the
distressful years of the third and fourth decade of the century
appear fairly simple.  We know that it is a permanent condition of
human well-being that the general level of prices should never
fall, and we have in the Currency Council a fairly efficient and
steadily improving world-organ to ensure that end.  A dollar, as we
know it to-day, means practically the same thing in goods,
necessities and satisfactions from one year's end to another.  Its
diminution in value is infinitesimal.  No increase is ever allowed
to occur.  For the owner of an unspent dollar there is neither un-
earnt increment nor unmerited loss.  As the productive energy of
our species rises, the dollar value of the total wealth is arranged
to increase steadily in proportion, and neither is the creditor
enriched nor robbed of his substantial expectation nor the debtor
confronted with payments beyond his powers.

There remains no way now of becoming passively wealthy.  Gambling
was ruthlessly eradicated under the Air Dictatorship and has never
returned.  Usury ranks with forgery as a monetary offence.  Money
is given to people to get what they want and not as a basis for
further acquisition, and we realize that the gambling spirit is a
problem for the educationist and mental expert.  It implies a
fundamental misunderstanding of life.  We have neither speculators,
shareholders, private usurers or rent lords.  All these
"independent" types have vanished from the earth.  Land and its
natural resources are now owned and administered either directly or
by delegation, by a hierarchy of administrative boards representing
our whole species; there are lease-holding cultivators and
exploiting corporations with no right to sublet, but there is no
such thing as a permanent private ownership of natural resources
making an automatic profit by the increment of rent.  And since
there is, and probably always will be now, a continual advance in
our average individual productive efficiency by which the whole
community profits, there follows a continual extension of our
collective enterprises, a progressive release of leisure and a
secular raising of the standard of individual life, to compensate
for what would otherwise be a progressive diminution in the number
of brains and hands needed to carry on the work of the world.
Human society, so long as productive efficiency increases, is
OBLIGED to raise its standards of consumption and extend its
activities year by year, or collapse.  And if its advance does not
go on it will drop into routine, boredom, viciousness and decay.
Steadfastly the quantity and variety of things MUST increase.

These imperative conditions, which constitute the A B C of the
existing order, seem so obvious to-day, that it is with difficulty
we put ourselves in the place of these twentieth century folk to
whom they were strange and novel.  They were not yet humanized en
masse; they still had the mentality of the "struggle for
existence".  It is only by a considerable mental effort, and after
a careful study of the gradual evolution of the civilized mentality
out of the chaotic impulses and competition of an originally very
unsocial animal, that we can even begin to see matters with the
eyes of our predecessors of a century and a half ago.

5.  The Way in Which Competition and Monetary Inefficiency Strained
    the Old Order

In the twentieth century of the Christian era there was still no
common currency by which to measure and carry on the world's
economic exchanges.  Those transactions were not merely apprehended
inexactly because of this; they were falsified, and it did not seem
possible that there would ever be an effective simplification.  It
is true that during what is known as the First Period of General
Prosperity, from 1850 C.E. until 1914, there was a kind of working
world system of currency and credit, centring upon the City of
London and based on the gold pound; but this was a purely
accidental growth, made workable by successive gold discoveries
which prevented too disastrous a fall in prices as productive
efficiency increased, and by the circumstances that gave the
insular English a lead in the development of steam transport on
land and sea and real incentives towards a practical propaganda of
world free trade.

That first gleam of cosmopolitan sunlight waned as it had waxed,
without any contemporary apprehension of the real forces at work,
much less any attempt to seize upon them and organize them in
permanence.  The financial ascendency and initiative of the City of
London crumbled away after the war and nothing appeared to take its
place.  In any case, this quasi-cosmopolitan system based on the
gold sovereign, and owing its modicum of success to continual
increments in the available gold, would have wilted as the world's
gold supplies gave out, but the strangulation of the world's
industry after the war was greatly accelerated by the gold hoarding
of the Americans and French.

And during all that phase of opportunity there was no substantial
effort to take hold of the land, sea and natural resources of the
planet and bring them from a state of fragmentary, chaotic and
wasteful exploitation into a general scheme.  There remained sixty-
odd "sovereign" governments, each claiming a supreme control of all
the natural wealth of the areas within its frontiers, and under
these governments, under conditions that varied with each, there
were private corporations and individuals with a right to deal more
or less freely with the fragment upon which they had established a
grip.  Everywhere the guiding principle in the exploitation of the
minerals, sunshine and power resources of the globe was the profit
of single or associated private individuals, and the patchwork
governments of the time interfered in the profit scramble only in
favour of their nationals against their foreign rivals.  Yet for
nearly a hundred years, because of the fortunate influx of gold and
inventions, this profit-seeking system, linked to the metallic
monetary system, sufficed to sustain a very great expansion and
enlargement of human life, and it was hard to convince the mass of
men, and still harder to convince the prosperous manufacturers,
traders, miners, cultivators and financiers who dominated public
affairs, that this was not a permanent system and that the world
already needed very essential modifications of its economic
methods.  A considerable measure of breakdown, a phase of display,
fear and distress, was necessary before they could be disillusioned.

The nineteenth century had for its watchwords "individual
enterprise and free competition".  But the natural end of all
competition is the triumph of one competitor.  It was in America
that the phenomena of Big Business first appeared and demonstrated
the force of this truism; at a score of points triumphant
organizations capable of crushing out new competitors and crippling
and restraining new initiatives that threatened their predominance
appeared.  In Europe there was little governmental resistance
to industrial alliances and concentrations in restraint of
competition, and they speedily developed upon a scale that
transcended political frontiers, but in the United States of
America there was a genuine effort to prevent enterprises
developing on a monopolistic scale.  The conspicuous leader of this
preventive effort was the first President Roosevelt (1858-1919) and
its chief fruit the Sherman Anti-Trust Act (1890), which proved a
rich mine for lawyers in the subsequent decades.

These great consolidations, which closed the phase of free
competition, were so far effective in controlling trade and
arresting new developments that Hilary Hooker, in his Studies in
Business Coagulation During the First Period of General Prosperity,
is able to cite rather more than two thousand instances, ranging
from radium and new fruits and foodstuffs to gramophones,
automobiles, reconstructed households, artificial moonlight for the
roadways by the countryside, and comfortable and economical railway
plant, in which ample supplies or beneficial improvements were
successfully kept off the market in the interests of established
profit-making systems.  After 1900 C.E. again there was a world-
wide cessation of daily newspaper initiative and a consequent
systole of free speech.  Distribution, paper supply and news
services had fallen into the hands of powerful groups able and
willing to crush out any new types of periodical, or any inimical
schools of public suggestion.  They set about stereotyping the
public mind.

These same profit-making systems in possession also played a large
part in arresting competition from countries in which they were
less completely in control, by subsidized political action for the
maintenance of protective tariffs.  Long before the world break-
down became manifest, the experience of the ordinary consumer so
far belied the sanguine theory that free competition was a mode of
endless progress, that he was still living in a house, wearing
clothes, using appliances, travelling about in conveyances, and
being fed with phrases and ideas that by the standard of the known
and worked-out inventions of the time should have been discarded on
an average, Hooker computes, from a quarter to half a century
before.  There was labour unemployed and abundant material
available to remedy all this, but its utilization was held up by
the rent-exacting and profit-earning systems already in possession.

This lag in modernization added greatly to the effects of increased
productive efficiency in the disengagement of those vast masses of
destitute unemployed and unemploying people which began to appear
almost everywhere, like the morbid secretion of a diseased body, as
the twentieth century passed on into its third decade.

6.  The Paradox of Over-Production and Its Relation to War

This so-called "paradox of over-production" which figures so
largely in the loose discussions of the "post-war" period was in
its essence a very simple affair indeed.  Just as the inevitable
end of a process of free competition was a consolidation of
successful competitors and an arrest of enterprise, so the
inevitable end of a search for profit in production was a steady
reduction of costs through increased efficiency--that is to say, a
steady decrease of the ratio of employment to output.  These things
lie so much on the surface of the process that it is almost
incredible to us that, wilfully or not, our ancestors disregarded
them.  Equally inevitable was it that these necessary contractions
of enterprise and employment should lead to an increase in the
proportion of unemployable people.  Geographical expansion and a
rising standard of life among both the employed and possessing
classes, together with the stimulating effect of a steady influx of
gold, masked and tempered for half a century this squeezing-out of
an increasing fraction of the species from its general economic
life.  There were nevertheless fluctuations, "cycles of trade" as
they were called, when the clogging machinery threatened to stall
and was then relieved and went on again.  But by the opening of the
twentieth century, the fact that the method of running human
affairs as an open competition for profit, was in its nature a
terminating method, was forcing itself upon the attention even of
those who profited most by it and had the most excuse for
disregarding it, and who, as a class, knew nothing of the Marxian

We know now that the primary task of world administration is to
arrest this squeezing out of human beings from active economic
life, by the continual extension of new collective enterprises, but
such ideas had still to be broached at that time.  The common folk,
wiser in their instincts than the political economists in their
intellectualism, were disposed to approve of waste and extravagance
because money was "circulated" and workers "found employment".  And
the reader will not be able to understand the world-wide tolerance
of growing armaments and war preparations during this period unless
he realizes the immediate need inherent in the system for
unremunerative public expenditure.  Somewhere the energy economized
had to come out.  The world of private finance would not tolerate
great rehousing, great educational and socially constructive
enterprises, on the part of the relatively feeble governments of
the time.  All that had to be reserved for the profit accumulator.
And so the ever-increasing productivity of the race found its vent
in its ancient traditions of warfare, which admitted the withdrawal
of a large proportion of the male population from employment for a
year or so and secreted that vast accumulation of forts,
battleships, guns, submarines, explosives, barracks and the like,
which still amazes us.  Without this cancer growth of armies and
navies, the paradox of over-production latent in competitive
private enterprise would probably have revealed itself in an
overwhelming mass of unemployment before even the end of the
nineteenth century.  A social revolution might have occurred then.

Militarism, however, alleviated these revolutionary stresses, by
providing vast profit-yielding channels of waste.  And it also
strengthened the forces of social repression.  The means of
destruction accumulated on a scale that well-nigh kept pace with
the increase in the potential wealth of mankind.  The progressive
enslavement of the race to military tyranny was an inseparable
aspect, therefore, of free competition for profits.  The latter
system conditioned and produced the former.  It needed the former
so as to have ballast to throw out to destruction and death
whenever it began to sink.  The militarist phase of the early
twentieth century and the paradox of over-production are correlated
facets of the same reality, the reality of the planless hypertrophy
of the social body.

It is interesting to note how this morbid accumulation of energy in
belligerence and its failure to find vent in other directions
became more and more evident in the physiognomy of the world as the
twentieth century progressed.  The gatherings of mankind became
blotched with uniforms.  Those admirable albums of coloured
pictures, Historical Scenes in a Hundred Volumes, which are
now placed in all our schools and show-places and supplied
freely to any home in which there are children, display very
interestingly the advent, predominance and disappearance of
military preoccupations in the everyday life of our ancestors.
These pictures are all either reproductions of actual paintings,
engravings or photographs, or, in the case of the earlier volumes,
they are elaborate reconditionings to the more realistic methods of
our time of such illustrations as were available.  Military
operations have always attracted the picture-maker at all times,
and there are plentiful pictures of battles from every age, from
the little cricket-field battle of the Middle Ages to the hundred
mile fights of the last Great War, but our interest here is not
with battles but with the general facies of social life.  Even in
the war-torn seventeenth century the general stream of life went on
without any manifest soldiering.  War was a special occupation.
While the battles of the English Civil War, which set up the first
English Republic (1649-1660), were in progress, we have evidence
that hunting and hawking parties were busy almost within sound of
the guns.  The novels of Jane Austen (England, 1775-1817) pursue
their even way without the faintest echo of the land and sea
campaigns in progress.  Goethe in Weimar (the German literary
"Great Man" during the "Great Man" period of literary thought in
Europe, 1749-1832) could not be bothered by requests for supplies
of wood and food for the German troops before the battle of Jena,
and was very pleased to meet his "enemy alien" Napoleon socially
during that campaign.

We rarely see the monarchs of the eighteenth century depicted in
military guise; the fashion was for robes and majesty rather than
for the spurs and feathers of the Bantam warrior-king.  It was the
unprecedented vehemence of the Napoleonic adventure that splashed
the social life of Europe with uniforms, infected feminine
fashions, and even set plump princess colonels, frogged with gold
lace and clutching bare sabres, joggling unsteadily at the heads of
regiments.  There was a brief return towards civilian attire with
the accession of the "domesticated monarchs", Louis Philippe in
France and Victoria in Great Britain; they marked a transient
reaction from Napoleonic fashions; but from the middle of the
nineteenth century onward the prestige of the soldier resumed its
advance and the military uniform became increasingly pervasive.
Flags became more abundant in the towns and "flag-days" dotted the
calendar.  There was never a crowd pictured in Europe after 1870
without a soldier or so.

The Great War greatly intensified the military element in the
street population, not only in Europe but America.  Various corps
of feminine auxiliaries were enrolled during that time and paraded
the world thereafter in appetising soldierly outfits.  In the
United States, except at Washington, or when there was a parade of
civil war veterans, a soldier in uniform had been hitherto the
rarest of birds.  He would have felt strange and uncomfortable.  He
would have offended the susceptibilities of a consciously liberated
people.  The Great War changed all that.  When Germany was disarmed
after the war, a Nazi movement and a Reichsbanner movement supplied
the needed colour until a German's freedom to get into properly
recognized livery was restored.  The pattern of half-military,
half-civilian organizations in uniform had already been spread
about the world between the South African War (1899-1901) and the
Great War, by the Boy Scout movement.

Of the Nazi movement, the Italian Fascisti and the Polish
Brotherhood at least there will be more to tell later.  The black
and brown shirts may be cited here as instances of the visible
breaking-down of the boundaries between military and civil life
that went on during and after the World War.

Hitherto war had been a marginal business, fought upon "fronts",
and the ordinary citizen had lived in comparative security behind
the front, but the bombing, gas-diffusing aeroplane, and later the
long-range air torpedo, changed all that.  The extended use of
propaganda as a weapon, and the increasing danger of social mutiny
under war stress, had also its share in making the entire surface
of a belligerent country a war area and abolishing any vestiges of
civil liberty, first during actual warfare and then in view of
warfare.  The desirability of getting everyone under orders, under
oath, and subject to prompt disciplinary measures, became more and
more manifest to governments.

So within a century the appearance of the human crowd changed over
from a varied assembly of incoordinated free individuals to a
medley of uniforms.  Everybody's dress at last indicated function,
obligation and preparedness.  The militarization of the European
multitude reached a maximum during the Polish wars.  About 1942 gas
masks, either actually worn or hanging from the neck, were common
for a time, and so, too, were the small sheath-knives which were to
be used in disposing of fallen aviators who might still be alive.
Patella metal hats and metal epaulettes to protect the head and
body against a rain of poisoned needles also appeared.  Some
civilians became far more formidable-looking than any soldiers.

The military authorities of those days were much perplexed by the
problem of giving the general population protective apparatus and
light weapons that would be effective against the military enemy
and yet useless for the purposes of insurrection.  For in spite of
the most strenuous suppression of agitation in those troubled
decades, the possible revolt of humanity against warfare, the
possibility of complete "loss of morale", however illogical and
incoherent, was felt by the professional soldiers as an increasing

Along the streets of most of the old-world cities there presently
appeared the characteristic yellow (or in France blue, and in
America red-and-white-striped) air-raid pillars with their glass
faces, only to be broken into and used after an official alarm,
which contained respirators and first-aid sets for possible gas
victims.  It is also to the same period we have to ascribe the
multiplication of vivid and abundant direction signs at every
street corner, set so as to throw a minimum of light upward and
pointing the way to gas chambers and hospitals.  It was a "gas-
minded" world in the 'forties.  The practical suppression of other
vivid and illuminated street signs was a natural corollary to this

In the first half of the twentieth century the cities blazed with
advertisement.  It was the period of maximum advertisement.  The
pictures of the Great White Way of New York, Piccadilly Circus, the
Grands Boulevards of Paris and so forth, with their polychromatic
visual clamour, still strike us as distractingly picturesque.
There was much flood-lighting after 1928.  Then progressively the
lights were turned down again and that visual clamour died away.
As the air threat returned, "lights out" became at last imperative,
except for the vivid furtive indications of refuge and first aid we
have just mentioned.

War fear spread very rapidly after 1930.  Darkness recaptured the
nocturnal town.  "Night-life" became stealthy and obscure, with an
increasing taint of criminality.  All civil hospitals and all
private doctors had disappeared from the world by 1945 and the
health services were only legally demilitarized again after 2010.
The amalgamation of the military and civil hospital and medical
services began in France as early as 1933.  By 1945 every doctor in
the Old World was, in theory at least, on a quasi-military footing;
he wore a distinctive uniform, was subject to stringent discipline,
and his premises, as well as the hospitals, bore the characteristic
black-and-yellow chequerwork.  All nurses were similarly enrolled.
Finally the general public was enrolled for health treatment as
common patients under oath.  By 1948 in such towns as had
sufficiently survived the general social demoralization to enforce
such regulations, it was impossible to take a chill or break an
ankle without at once falling into the category of patients and
being numbered, put into a black-and-yellow uniform and marched or
carried off for treatment.  Theoretically this system of treatment
was universal.  In practice neither the uniforms nor the doctors
were available.  For regulation and militarization were going on in
that period against an immense counter-drive towards social
disintegration.  The more humanity got into uniform, the shabbier
the uniforms became.

Before the Polish struggle, general architecture was very little
affected by military needs.  The militarization of costume preceded
the militarization of scenery.  Even barracks and such-like army
buildings were erected by army architects as a simple vulgarization
of ordinary housing patterns, a mere stiffening up, so to speak, of
the common "jerry-built" house.  There still survive for our
astonishment pictures of Victorian Military Gothic and Victorian
Military Tudor, produced under the British War Office.  They
display homes fit for drill-sergeants.  The military mind had to be
roused by the experiences of the Polish conflict to the profound
reconstruction of the ordinary town that had become necessary if it
was still to be taken seriously.  Before then, fortification
scarcely affected the urban scene at all, even in the case of a
fortified town.  Previously a fortress had been just an ordinary
civil town surrounded at distances of from three to fifty miles by
forts, strong points, trench systems and the like.  Now it was
realized, first in Berlin, and then in Danzig, Warsaw, Paris and
Turin, and after that by the whole world, that air warfare demanded
not merely fortification round a town, but much more imperatively,
fortification OVER a town.  The world, which had been far too
stupid to realize in 1930 that the direct way out of its economic
difficulties lay in the modernization and rebuilding of its houses,
set itself, in a state of war panic after 1942, to as complete a
revision of its architecture in the face of bombs and gas as its
deepening impoverishment permitted.  What it would not do for
prosperity, it attempted belatedly out of fear.

The first most obvious undertaking was the construction of those
immense usually ill-built concrete cavern systems for refuge, whose
vestiges are still to be visited by the curious tourist at Paris
and Berlin (the London ones have all fallen in, the collapse
beginning after the great landslip and fire), and close upon this
came the cessation of tall building and the concentration of design
upon the vast (and often dangerous) carapace roof and its gigantic
supporting pillars and foundation rafts.  Only the ever-deepening
poverty, the increasing industrial disorganization and the
transitoriness of that last war-phase saved all the towns in the
world from being thrust completely under such squat massive

So strong were the influences of that time that even up to 2020 the
tendency of architectural design was to crouch.  Hardly any mass of
buildings erected between 1945 and the end of the century lifts up
its head and looks the world in the face.  That period has been
called, not unjustly, Second Egyptian.  And this was so in spite of
the multiplying opportunities for grace and lightness afforded by
the supersession of steel frame buildings by the strong and
flexible neo-concrete materials that were already available.  How
timidly they were used!  We grovel no longer because we are ceasing
to fear each other.  The soaring, ever improving homes in which we
live to-day would have sent our great-grandfathers scurrying to
their cellars in an ecstasy of terror.

7.  The Great War of 1914-1918

There is a monstrous tedious accumulation of records concerned with
the World War.  The Catalogue of Historical Material stored at
Atacama gives a list of 2,362,705 books and gross files, up to
date, and of these over 182,000 deal exclusively or largely with
the causation of the war.  Nothing could bring home to the student
the profound difference in mental equipment between ourselves and
the men and women of that period than a visit to the long silent
galleries of that great library of dead disputes and almost
completely forgotten records.  He will see hardly a visitor along
the vistas of that shining framework of shelves; a quiet cleaner or
duster perhaps will be visible, scrutinizing the condition of the
material, or a young revisionist student patiently checking some
current summary--or a black cat.  For the rest, above, below, to
right and left is a clean and luminous stillness; papers at rest.

In one large section of this sere honeycomb the student will find
the records of the "war guilt controversy" that agitated the world
for decades after the Peace of Versailles.  Let him draw out a seat
anywhere and take down a file or so at hazard and turn over its
pages.  He will be able to read almost all of it nowadays, whatever
the original language, because practically all the collection has
now been interleaved with translations into Basic English.  And it
will seem to him that he is reading the outpourings of lunatics, so
completely have the universal obsessions of that time been
exorcized since.

Had "Germany" planned the war?  Was "France" the guilty party?  Had
"Britain" much to answer for?  With difficulty will the student let
down his mind into the fantastic world of extinct imaginations in
which these strange personifications, as monstrous and incredible
as the ancient gods of India, were treated as real and morally
responsible individuals, hated, trusted, feared and loved.  The war
was, in immediate fact, an aimless and fruitless slaughter upon the
altars of these stupendous deities, the wounding and mutilation of
perhaps twenty million human beings, and a vast burning-up of
material wealth.  In the crazy fancy of our ancestors it was a
noble and significant struggle.  Happily we need not revive their
craziness here.  The question of "war guilt" was never settled.  It
ceased to be pursued, it was neglected, it floated away into the
absurd, and little but those three hundred feet or so of forgotten
books and gross files remain to testify to its vanished importance.

The causation of the struggle was, indeed, perfectly simple.  It
arose naturally and necessarily from that irregular and
disproportionate growth of human appliances as compared with the
extension of political and social intelligence we have already

The new means of communication and transport, and the new economic
life which demanded the products of every zone and soil for its
purposes, were necessitating the reorganization of human affairs as
a World-State, and since the world was already parcelled up among
sixty-odd competing sovereign governments there were only two
possible courses open to mankind, either to arrange the coalescence
of these governments by treaty and rational arrangements to meet
the new need, or to allow a steadily intensified mutual pressure to
develop into more or less thinly disguised attempts at world
conquest.  In the decades before the war the British, French,
German, Russian, Japanese and American systems were all, as the
word went then, "imperialist"--all, that is, attempting to become
World-States on a planet on which obviously there was room only for
one single World-State.  Nothing of the sort had been apparent when
the methods of European statescraft had been devised.  These vaster
possibilities had yawned open afterwards.  The eighteenth and
nineteenth centuries were centuries of small restricted wars for
limited advantages.  In the twentieth century the scale of war
expanded beyond any limit and the advantages to be won by it
disappeared.  But the politicians and diplomatists played their
time-honoured game against each other with a sort of terrified
inevitability.  They were driven; they had no control, or at least
none of them seemed to have had the vigour and imagination to
attempt a control.  They were driven by the economic necessity we
have explained in the previous section.  They had to arm
preposterously.  They had to threaten.  They had to go through with
the business.

These forces account for the outbreak and universality of the Great
War, but they do not account for its peculiar frightfulness.  For
that it is necessary to realize that though governments expanded
only against an enormous pressure of mutual restraint, no
limitations had been set to the hypertrophy of financial and
industrial enterprises.  These last were under the sway of a
relentless and unrestrained progress; they expanded, invented,
urged and sold; they brought weapons of a strange and terrible
effectiveness to the settlement of what were in comparison small
and antiquated disputes.  To that hypertrophy of the armourer we
will return presently, because the Great War was really only a
first revelation of this particular disproportion between economics
and politics, and the evil still went on in an exaggerated form
after the formal conclusion of the struggle at the Peace of
Versailles (1919).  But let us first tell what needs to be known of
the details of the Great War.

How little that is now!  There is a vast literature both of fiction
based on experience and of personal reminiscence about it, and some
of it is admirably written; almost any of it may be read for
interest and edification and hardly any of it need be read with
scholarly precision.  The picture of the outbreak of the war still
touches us.  There was a curious unconsciousness of the grossness
of the menace in events, even on the part of myriads doomed to
suffer and die in a few months' time.  Many of the stories told
begin with a holiday party or a country-house gathering or some
such bright setting.  The weather that August (1914) was
exceptionally fine.

The details of the struggle itself were as horrible and distressing
as they were inconsequent, and there is no need whatever for anyone
but the specialist to master their sequence in detail.  The old-
fashioned history, with its lists of names, dates, battles and so
on, was designed rather to supply easily marked material for
examinations than to give any sense of the historical process.
Examinations have long passed out of educational practice; they
have gone to join the "globes" and the abacus, the slate and the
cane in the scholastic limbo, but their memory is preserved in the
popular game of "examination papers", when people write down as
fast as they can and as much as they can about some suddenly
selected subject.

Few of us could write even a brief account now of the World War.
The names of such generals as Haig, Kitchener, French, Joffre, Foch
and Ludendorff, to take names at random, and such battles as
Tannenberg, the Marne, the Somme, Paschendaele, the Falkland Isles,
Jutland and so forth, mean nothing and need mean nothing to the
ordinary citizen to-day.  He does not know whether French was
really French or not, nor whether Foch was a Frenchman or a German.
He inclines to the latter view.  He does not know who won or lost
these conflicts and he does not care.  He has not even a sporting
interest in it.  They were not lively fights.  Nearly all the
commanders concerned had dull and unattractive personalities and
the business was altogether too unwieldy for them.  Most of their
operations were densely stupid, muddled both in conception and
execution.  One would as soon listen to a child reciting not very
accurately and at endless length the deals and tricks of some game
of cards it has played, or imagines it has played, as read their
memoirs--packed as they too often are with self-exculpation,
personal resentments and malice.  Faint, faded, immense and far-off
tragedies, these struggles that were to have astounded posterity
have already gone far towards complete effacement in any but a few
specializing minds, are hardly more vivid now in our collective
consciousness than the battles of the Peloponnesian War--or the
campaigns and conquests of Tamerlane.  They had nothing of the
primary historical importance and strategic splendour which have
restored the gigantic military conceptions of Genghis Khan to an
integral place in our ordinary educational curriculum.

For the rodomontade of the conflict the curious cannot do better
than glance through the eager narrative of Winston Churchill's
World Crisis.  There one finds all the stereotyped flourishes and
heroisms of nineteenth-century history from the British point of
view; the "drama of history" in rich profusion, centred upon one of
the most alert personalities in the conflict.  He displays a
vigorous naïve puerility that still gives his story an atoning
charm.  He has the insensitiveness of a child of thirteen.  His
soldiers are toy soldiers and he loves to knock over a whole row of
them.  He enjoyed the war.  He takes himself and all the now
forgotten generals and statesmen of the war with a boyish
seriousness.  He passes grave judgments on their tragic fooleries
and distributes compliments and blame, often in the most gracious
manner, convinced that he is writing for a meticulously admiring
and envious posterity.  They would read, they would marvel.  He was
the sort of man who believed that when he begot children he created
an audience.  He was misled by the excitement of his own reading of
history.  He not only measures for us the enormous gulf between the
mentality of his times and our own, but he enables us to bridge
that gulf with an amused and forgiving sympathy.

A less attractive spirit displays itself in the memoirs of such
figures as Ludendorff, Bülow, Clemenceau, Fisher, Foch, and so
through the whole category of war leaders.  The war was the supreme
event in the lives of most of these men and apparently they were
never able to think of anything else afterwards.  They had none of
the recuperative innocence of Churchill, his terrier-like interest
in everything.  They all took to writing furiously in their
declining years and no other pens could have damned them so
completely.  They are grown-up and yet under-developed persons;
as adult as old chimpanzees; they cannot claim Churchill's benefit
of schoolboy, and there is a real horror in their wrinkled
meannesses and envies, their gross enthusiasms and their sincere
bloodthirstiness and hate.  Most of their mutual recriminations are
too incomprehensible to be of the slightest interest now; spite and
twaddle are still spite and twaddle even if drenched with blood.
The most accessible sample for the contemporary reader is The Life
and Diaries of Field-Marshal Sir Henry Wilson, Bart., G.C.B.,
D.S.O., a lean, unsightly man of infinite energy, gusto and vanity,
who played a very prominent rôle in bringing about and carrying out
the catastrophe.  It is the latest reprint in the Historical
Documents Series; it is richly illustrated and abundantly
annotated, and with it are bound up the brilliantly scornful
criticisms of Wilson's contemporary, Sir Andrew Macphail, and
Stephen Freudheim's more scientific analysis of him as the supreme
type of the "soldierly mind".

For the grimmer actualities of the struggle there is a vast and
sombre literature.  It has been summarized in the last fifteen
years by the Historical Bureau in its War Pictures for Posterity by
Pen, Pencil and Camera.  Everyone should turn over those strange
incredible records of endurance, callousness, devotion and insane
courage, to learn something of the extremes to which men and women
like ourselves can be pushed by the grim forces of social

The earlier volumes deal chiefly with the psychology of the more
than half civilized citizens of the Atlantic and North European
states suddenly precipitated into a maelstrom of destruction.  We
see the urban crowds demonstrating and cheering in the streets of
the capital cities, the floods of youths coming from their work to
"join up", the wonder and unimaginative fierceness and heroism of
the opening stage.  Then come the first contacts, villages in
flames, the wild shooting of curious bystanders as spies and
guerillas, realizations of horror and a wave of fear, the invaded
populations in flight, black crowds with their pitiful impedimenta
streaming along darkling roads, going they know not whither.  The
rifles and machine-guns rattle, the guns thud, and the cheering
adventurousness of the advancing armies as they blunder heavily
into contact passes into a phase of astounded violence and
hardship.  The new war was like no war that had ever been before.
The French upon their eastern front went forward to the attack with
immense élan, in bright uniforms and to the historical inspiration
of the "Marseillaise".  They were massacred.  They lost a third of
a million men in three weeks.  The Germans poured through Belgium,
more than a million strong, to be stopped and stunned with Paris
almost within their grasp.  The pictures show the smiling landscape
of eastern Belgium, France and east Prussia in July 1914, and the
same countryside a couple of months later--torn, scored and
trenched, defiled with bloody heaps of litter that were once
clothed bodies, an anguish of countless thousands of unclean,
hungry, exhausted, cruelty-wrung human beings.

These bands of contact, these regions of filthy pain and tumult,
spread.  Presently there were "war zones" reaching from the North
Sea to the Alps and across Eastern Europe, strange regions in which
every house was a ruin, every tree a splintered trunk, where
millions of crouching men went to and fro in trenches and ditches
furtively like rats, and the ragged dead lay unburied.  There day
and night the superfluous energy of a profiteering economic system,
denied all other outlet by its own preconceptions and the rigid
historical traditions in which it was blinkered, blew itself away
in the incessant concussions of mines, bombs and guns and a
continued destruction of human life.

Presently newly invented weapons, hitherto untried, came to extend
and intensify the struggle.  The aeroplane, and that primitive
"navigable" the Zeppelin, carried the war behind the fronts and
attacked the civilian population in the cities.  We see the
explosive and incendiary bombs bursting into the dirty little urban
homes of the time, blowing to rags the bed-rid grandmother and the
baby in the cradle; we see the panic-stricken crowds seeking the
shelter of cellars and excavations and the drainlike railway
"tubes" of the time.  In the early stages of the air-war only
explosives and inflammatory substances were used, but as the
struggle progressed the art of using gas bombs developed, and an
agonizing suffocation was added to the nocturnal chances of flame
and explosion and death among fallen ruins for the non-combatant at
home.  The submarine, also, was a novelty of the Great War, and a
very searching novelty.  It was used first to sink fighting ships
and then it was turned against all sea-going craft.  We have vivid
descriptions of the sinking of the Lusitania without warning and
the drowning of 1,198 men, women and children.  She was, by the
standards of the time, a great and luxurious ship, and a sort of
symbolism was found by the writers of this period in this sudden
descent from light, comfort and confidence into a desperate and
hopeless struggle in the waters of the night.  All the achievements
of nineteenth-century civilization seemed to many to be following
in the downward wake of the Lusitania.

Service in these early submarines strained men to the breaking
point.  They were essentially engines of war, they had all the
defects of inventions at an early stage, and none of the security
and comfort of the great submarine barges that are used to-day for
the Mediterranean and Atlantic Ridge mines and for general deep sea
exploration.  These, with their beautifully adjusted pressure
systems and their limitless vertical range, are calculated rather
to mislead than enlighten us as to the capabilities of the
primitive submarines of the Great War.  The latter were able to
descend safely only to a depth of a hundred metres; below that the
pressure became too much for them and their plates gave and leaked.
When they leaked the salt water was apt to affect the accumulators
and chlorine gas was released to torment and suffocate the crews.
Below a hundred and fifty metres these fragile contrivances
crumpled up altogether and were destroyed.  The air in them became
foul when they submerged, in spite of the compressed oxygen they
carried, and the continual condensation of exhaled moisture gave
them a peculiar clammy discomfort.  They could move about under
water for a couple of days by means of their electric batteries,
but then it was necessary to come to the surface and run their oil
combustion engines for some hours to recharge.  Armed with guns and
packed with mines, bombs, torpedoes and other explosives, they set
out to harass and destroy the surface shipping of the enemy.

It was a difficult and almost fantastically dangerous task.
Submerged, they were invisible, but also they were blind.  Near the
surface they could get a limited view of what was going on by means
of a periscope.  On the surface they had the range of outlook of
any other surface boat, but at all the risks a surface boat must
take.  So under conditions of extreme discomfort and partial
asphyxiation the crews of these strangely formidable and strangely
fragile contrivances groped their way towards their victims.  To
see the quarry fairly they had to come to the surface, and that
exposed them to gunfire.  If their thin steel skins were pierced by
a single shot they could no longer go under.  Often when submerged
they betrayed their whereabouts unwittingly by bubbles of gas and
escapes of oil.

At first, in spite of their limitations, the submarines proved a
very deadly weapon, more particularly in the hands of the Central
European Powers.  They destroyed a great multitude of ships and
drowned many score thousands of men.  Then slowly the methods used
against them improved.  They were hunted by a special flotilla, and
among other ships by the "Q" boats, armed vessels disguised as
harmless merchantmen.  These lured them to the surface and then let
down sham bulwarks and opened fire upon them, so that after a time
they no longer dared emerge to challenge even the most harmless-
looking craft.  Explosive mines were moored in their possible
tracks and mine-armed nets set across harbours and channels.  They
were also watched for by aeroplanes and special airships whose
signals guided the destroyers to their quarry.  Ingenious listening
contrivances were invented to locate them.  They were shot at on
the surface, rammed, and pursued by "depth charges" which could
strain their plates and disable them even when exploded scores of
metres away.

Such, briefly, were the conditions of submarine warfare in the
years 1917-18.  And yet to the very end of the war men could be
found to carry it on, to destroy and drown and be in their turn
hunted and destroyed.  The building and launching of submersibles
never ceased.  Men went down in them to chilly confinement, to the
perpetual anxiety of mine or ram, to the quivering menace of the
distant depth charge, to the reasonable probability of a frightful
death beyond all human aid.  Few submarines returned to harbour ten
times; many went out new upon their first voyage never to return.
Two hundred of them were lost by the Germans alone; each loss a
tragedy of anguish and dismay in the deeps.  Towards the end it was
claimed by their antagonists that the crews were losing morale.
Once or twice an undamaged submarine that had been cornered
surrendered, and the new commanders showed a growing tendency to
return to port for minor repairs or other slight pretexts.  But on
the whole, such is the unimaginative heroic submissiveness of our
species, the service was sustained.  The Germans supplied most of
the flesh for this particular altar; willing and disciplined, their
youngsters saluted and carried their kit down the ladder into this
gently swaying clumsy murder mechanism which was destined to become
their coffin.

Their obedience brings us to one of the most fundamental lessons
that the Great War has for us: the extreme slowness with which the
realization of even the most obvious new conditions pierces through
the swathings of habitual acceptance.  Millions of human beings
went open-eyed to servitude, bullying, hardship, suffering and
slaughter, without a murmur, with a sort of fatalistic pride.  In
obedience to the dictates of the blindest prejudices and the most
fatuous loyalties they did their utmost to kill men against whom
they had no conceivable grievance, and they were in their turn
butchered gallantly, fighting to the last.  The War Pictures
volumes dismay our imaginations by portraying a series of wholesale
butcheries, many of them on a stupendous scale, of men who died
facing their enemies.  After the great slaughter of the French at
the outset of the war, and a mighty killing of Russians at the
Battles of Tannenberg and the Masurian Lakes, there was during what
was called the deadlock period, the period of trench warfare, a
diminution of the losses upon the West.  Hostilities sank down to a
gusty conflict of shell-fire, rifle assassinations, and raids with
bombs and bludgeons.  In the East, however, the Russians ran out of
ammunition, and held their trenches only by a great martyrdom of
men; they lost well over a million before the end of 1914, and yet
they continued to obey orders.  A series of minor campaigns broke
out in regions remote from the main centres of contact.  There is a
horrible account in the Pictures of the sufferings of some
thousands of British common soldiers taken prisoners at Kut, in
Mesopotamia.  (Their generals and other officers, however, who had
arranged that particular capitulation, were honourably and
comfortably entertained by their captors the Turks.)  There is no
effective expression of resentment by the British troops on record.

In 1916 and 1917 there were spasmodic renewals of hostilities on a
large scale by the British and French in France.  Newly trained
British armies were made to advance in close formation by generals
who, unless they were imbeciles, could have had no doubts of the
fate to which they were sending their men.  If they were not
imbeciles then they were criminally unwilling to learn and soul-
blind to suffering and waste.  The mentality of these men is still
a matter for discussion.  The poor boys they commanded were marched
forward shoulder to shoulder in successive waves of attack, and so
advancing they were shot to pieces by the enemy machine-guns.  Out
of battalions of six or seven hundred, perhaps a hundred would
struggle through the defensive fire and come to bomb-throwing,
bayonet-thrusts and surrender in the German trenches.  Small
isolated groups of them in shell-holes and captured positions
fought on for days.  So perished the flower of an entire school
generation, collected from hundreds of thousands of homes, more or
less loved, more or less cared for and more or less educated; it
had been enlisted, trained, sent out to the battlefields at
enormous cost, to be left at last in the desolated spaces between
the armies, lying in heaps and swathes to rot and be rat-eaten.
For months afterwards, as the photographs show, thousands of them
were to be seen sprawling in formation as they fell, just as if
their ranks were still waiting to leap again to the attack.  But as
the observer drew nearer he realized their corruption.  He
discovered bony hands, eyeless sockets, faces far gone in decay.

The British commander-in-chief in his despatches did not fail to
extol the courage of his lost battalions and to represent this
monstrous exploit as a victory.  Some mile or so of ground had been
gained in that July offensive and less than 12,000 prisoners had
been taken.  Twice as many British were left prisoners in German
hands, but this the despatches ignored.

The appalling nature of this particular disaster leaked out only
very slowly.  The British censorship at least was efficient and the
generals, however incapable in other respects, lied magnificently.
The Channel crossing made it particularly easy to hide events from
the British public.  And it had a peculiar effect on the British
troops; it gave them a feeling of being in another and a different
world from "home", a war-world in which such cruel and fantastic
things could be natural.  This monstrous massacre was, indeed,
contrived and carried through, not simply without a revolt, but
with scarcely an audible protest on the part of either the parents,
relations, friends or surviving comrades of those hosts of wasted

The commanders of the Russian armies in Austria, Armenia and
elsewhere were announcing equally costly and heroic triumphs and
the Germans and Austrians were issuing the most valiant and
excessive contradictions of their claims.  They, too, were losing
hideously enough, though in a lesser proportion than their
opponents.  The next year (1917), the British, gallant and docile
as ever, with only very slightly improved tactics, were going again
into great offensives.

But now the French troops began to manifest a livelier intelligence.
They were amidst familiar things, nearer their homes and less cut
off from subversive influences than the British.  A certain General
Nivelle, at that time French Commander-in-Chief, made what Churchill
calls an "experiment", which resulted altogether in the loss of
nearly a couple of hundred thousand men. It involved the advance of
masses of infantry into intense fields of fire.  In an hour, said
Lieutenant Ybarnegaray (in a debate in the French Chamber, June
1917), they were reduced to a crowd "running like madmen", all
formations and distinctions lost. Provision had been made for less
than 15,000 wounded.  There were seven times as many.  Most of the
casualties never received the most elementary attention for three
days.  The result was gangrene, amputation and death for thousands.
Then came the first intimation that there were limits to human
obedience.  A French division ordered into action to continue this
futile holocaust refused to march.  Churchill says this was "deeply
disquieting" to the authorities, and no doubt it pained and
distressed every intelligent amateur of war.  This particular
division was cajoled into a change of mind.  It took part in the
fighting, says Churchill, "without discredit", but the spirit of
its resistance spread.

The next sign of sanity in this world torture was the collapse of
the grotesque Russian autocracy.  We have already told of the
mental and moral decay of the Tzardom in our general study of the
degeneration of monarchy.  [Non inventus.--ED.]  Abruptly this
profoundly rotten government collapsed into nothing; its vast
domains became a various disorder, and for some months phantom
imitations of Western revolutionaries, inspired by memories of the
first French revolution or by legends of British parliamentary
wisdom, occupied the capital.  The one certain fact in the
situation was the accumulated disinclination of the Russian people
for any further warfare.  But this first republican government
under an eloquent lawyer politician, of no great directive force,
Alexandre Kerensky, was unable either to carry on the war or to end
it.  A subdued but spreading clamour for "peace by negotiation" in
all the combatant countries ensued, a clamour that active
repression and the most rigorous concealment in the Press failed to
silence.  There was an attempt to call a sort of peace conference
of Radicals at Stockholm, and then a second revolution in Russia
which carried a small and resolute Communist organization to power--
carried it to power simply and solely because there was no other
organized alternative, and because it promised peace plainly and
surely--peace on any terms.  The Russian armies melted away at its
signal; the men streamed home.  The German military authorities in
the East found the trenches before them undefended, and with every
courtesy of war, as one soldier to another, welcomed the Russian
officers of the old régime, taking refuge from the belated
resentment of their own men.

In 1917 mankind seemed already to be awakening from the war-
nightmare.  Mutinies broke out in sixteen separate French army
corps, 115 regiments were involved, divisions elected soldiers'
councils and whole regiments set out for Paris to demand a
reasonable wind-up of the struggle.  The one last hope of the
despairing soldiers, said Pierre Laval, had been Stockholm.  That
disappointment had made life unbearable.  But the storm abated with
the entry of the United States of America into the war, and the
powers in control of the Western World were still able to pursue
their dreadful obsessions for another year.

War Pictures for Posterity by Pen, Pencil and Camera devotes a
whole volume (xxi) to the tragedy of a special Russian infantry
corps in France.  Fifteen thousand Russians had been sent thither
in 1916 to be equipped and armed and put into the line with the
French armies.  Many of these poor lads scarcely knew the
difference between a Frenchman and a German, and the ostensible
objects of the war were quite beyond their understanding.  But they
heard of the revolution in their own country and they resolved to
consider their attitude with regard to it.  They elected
representatives and put it to the vote whether they should continue
to fight, which meant for them to take part in that "experiment" of
Nivelle's known to be in preparation at the time.  They chose what
seemed to them the generous part and went into the battle.  The
French command used them ruthlessly, and nearly 6,000 were killed
or wounded.  The rest came out of the line and mutinied.  They
would fight no more.  Thereupon these defenceless men were
surrounded by trustworthy French troops, a great concentration of
guns was assembled, fire was opened upon them suddenly and they
were massacred.  Horrible photographs of the details of this--
photographs hidden away at the time from the authorities and
brought to light later--are given in the summary already cited.

For nearly a year the French lost confidence in the morale of their
own men and dared make no more great attacks, but their allies
offered up another 400,000 men in the battle of Paschendaele and
accounted for 300,000 Germans, and in the spring the Germans made a
vast multitudinous attack in the West which succeeded at first and
then collapsed, whereupon their antagonists, reinforced by new
armies from America, waded back through blood to a dreadful final
victory.  The last nine months of the conflict saw more slaughter
than any preceding year.  From March 21st, 1918, to November 11th
in the same year the British suffered 830,000 casualties, the
French and Belgians 964,000 and the Germans 1,470,000.  There were
also 2,000,000 American troops brought to Europe before the end,
and of these more than half were actually engaged in the fighting.
Their casualties were certainly not less than 350,000.  Portuguese
and other contingents from the most unexpected quarters also
contributed to that culminating death-roll, but it is impossible
for us now to give exact numbers for these minor forces.

These are the gross figures of warfare.  But War Pictures devotes
three volumes, perhaps the most horrible of all, to the
presentation of various details of the fighting in which these vast
multitudes suffered and perished.  These three volumes are like the
microscopic slides in a specimen book of anatomy, which show us
from a selected scrap of tissue the texture of the whole.  Little
figures stand out enlarged, chosen by the hazard that they wrote or
talked or carried a camera, to represent the nameless millions who
have left no record.  We have accounts of men who were left to lie
out for days between the lines, tortured by thirst and stifled by
the stench of their own corruption, and yet who survived to tell
the tale.  We have the stories of men who fell into heaps of
rotting dead, and lay there choking, and of men who were gassed.
The tortures of gas were already many and various, and most of the
mixtures then used left tormenting weaknesses in the system for the
rest of life.  We have descriptions of the rude surgery of the time
and abstracts of the mental disorders through which minds fled from
reality.  There are also some dreadful pictures of mutilated men,
faceless, crippled, grotesquely distorted, and an autobiography of
one of the blinded (Outstaying My Welcome, by Fritz Schiff, 1923).
Scores of thousands of unhappy fragments of humanity had to be
hidden away in special institutions until they died, they were at
once so terrifying and so pitiful and hopeless.  The world forgot
them even while they lived.

The distortion of souls was even more dreadful than the distortion
of bodies.  One of the most lurid items in that dreadful assemblage
of realities is a lecture on the use of the bayonet, which chanced
to be printed, reprinted later by anti-war propagandists and so
preserved for us, delivered by a certain Sergeant-Major Franklin to
some English cadets in London.  To us he is incredible in his
ferocity; we are almost forced to believe he was drunk or mad,
until we realize from the "laughter" that punctuated his
utterances, from the hearty thanks of his commanding officer, and
the "three cheers" which rewarded him at the conclusion of his
discourse, that he was merely expressing the spirit of war service
as it was then understood.

"If you see a wounded German," he said, "shove him out and have no
nonsense about it."

He was all against taking prisoners--and for murdering them after
surrender.  He told with sympathy and approval of how a corporal
under him butchered a group of German boys.  "Can I do these blokes
in, sir?" asked the corporal, pointing to a bunch of disarmed

"Please yourself," said the sergeant-major. . . .

When they had been "done in", the honest corporal, a released
convict from Dartmoor prison, came back to the sergeant-major very
gratified and honoured, and, still in favour, discussed the
technical difficulties of withdrawing a bayonet quickly in order to
be ready for the "next fellow".

That was, that is, the spirit to which war brings a human being.
Sergeant-Major Franklin had his abundant equivalents in every army
engaged.  We are able to quote an English document, freely
published.  Participants in many other countries had less freedom.
On the whole the English were as gentle as any other soldiers.  But
fear and bloodlust, it is plain, wipe out all the slowly acquired
restraints and tolerance of social order very quickly and
completely from any breed of men.  History must not be written in
pink and gilt.  Prisoners and wounded were not simply neglected and
ill-treated and "shoved out".  Many were actually tortured to
death--either by way of reprisals or in sheer wanton cruelty.
There is also a series of photographs of foully mutilated bodies,
mutilated and indecently displayed while they were dying or
immediately after they were dead.  Those millions marched indeed
right out of civilization, right out of any sort of human life as
we know it to-day, marched down to something viler than mere
bestiality, when they marched into the war zone.

After the summer of 1918, which brought with it the certainty of
ultimate defeat, the combatant energy of Germany evaporated.
Everywhere there was distress and hunger due to a rigorous
blockade.  The discipline of the land relaxed; the country behind
the front was infested by stragglers; the Higher German Command
found itself now, like its antagonists, unable to rely upon the men
to advance, found itself unable to rely upon their resistance to an
enemy attack.  They became eager to surrender--taking the off-
chance of meeting experimental corporals from Dartmoor on the way.

Wherever there was still loyalty and obedience, however, men were
still callously sacrificed by the Higher Command.  War Pictures
(vol. xxvii, 23842 et seq,) show the German machine-gunners in
their pits, on the defensive against advancing British and American
troops.  These men allowed themselves to be drugged and chained to
their weapons, and so continued to fire and kill until the attack
came up to them.  Then they found small mercy.  They were bayoneted
or their brains were beaten out.  They paid for the inventions
of their masters.  They paid for the hatred of Germany the
introduction of poison gas had evoked in every attacking army.
Such residues of senseless devotion availed nothing against the
massive pressures that were at last exhausting Germany.  In
November the Kaiser, the War Lord, was in flight; a humiliating
Armistice had been concluded and the German armies were streaming
home in disorder, incoherently revolutionary.

Upon that phrase, "incoherently revolutionary", our account of the
main war may very well end.  Here we will only allude to the defeat
and demoralization of the Italian armies after the battle of
Caporetto, when 800,000 were either killed, wounded, taken
prisoner, or (sensible fellows) "went home".  Nor will we describe
the naval battles, of which the chief and last was Jutland.  It was
the last, because afterwards the German admirals were faced by the
threat of mutiny if they essayed another fight.  Whether it was or
was not a victory for the British was never exactly determined.
The controversy died out during the Polish wars.

The War Pictures volumes give many photographs and accounts of
these naval encounters.  We have, for example, a whole series of
snapshots of a British cruiser in the Battle of Jutland, the
Defence steaming at full-speed-ahead to attack and finish up a
smashed and sinking German battleship, the Wiesbaden.  The onrush
of that fierce mechanism is terrific.  It seems invincible and
overpowering.  It has an undeniable splendour.  Then suddenly a
series of blinding flashes show the Defence has been hit by the
fire of some other German battleship coming to the help of her
sister ship, and in a moment she has blown up and gone; she is no
more than a mounting unfolding column of smoke and flying
fragments, including, we realize with an effort, the torn and
scalded bodies of eight hundred men.  Then a welter of littered
tumbled water. . . .

There is no end to the multitude of such pictures.

But let us return to our phrase "incoherently revolutionary".  That
is the key to the whole human situation at that time.  The distaste
for the war throughout the world was enormous, if not in its
opening phases, then certainly before the second year was reached.
It bored; it disgusted.  Its events had none of the smashing
decisiveness that seizes the imagination.  Even the great naval
battle of Jutland was, from the point of view of spectacle, a
complete failure.  None the less, for a very simple reason a
comparatively small minority of resolutely belligerent persons was
able to keep this vast misery going.  On the one hand the war was
in accordance with the ruling ideas of the time, while on the other
the hundreds of millions whose astonishment and dismay deepened
daily, as horror unfolded beyond horror, had no conception of any
alternative pattern of life to which they could turn as a refuge
from its relentless sequences.

To cry "End the war" ended nothing, because it gave no intimations
of what had to replace belligerent governments in the control of
human affairs.  The peace the masses craved for was as yet only a
featureless negative.  But peace must be a positive thing, designed
and sustained, for peace is less natural than warfare.  We who have
at last won through to the Pax Mundi know how strong and resolute,
how powerfully equipped and how vigilant, the keepers of the peace
must be.

8.  The Impulse to Abolish War; The Episode of the Ford Peace Ship

One quaint expedition, grotesque and childish and yet an augury of
greater things to come, flits very illuminatingly across the
dreadful record of these war years.  It is the voyage of a
passenger steamship from New York to Norway.  The dark curtains of
oblivion fall in heavier and heavier folds before the thundering
battleships of the twilit Battle of Jutland; their forgotten names
sink back into a vague general impression of huge flame-spouting
masses that rush through smoke and mist to their fate; only a
specialist can tell us now whether the Lützow or the Friedrich der
Grosse, the Lion, or the Iron Duke, the Vanguard or the Colossus
perished with its complement of men or staggered out of that
battle.  They have become monstrous irrelevances.  There is nothing
but their size, and the smashing and drowning of hundreds of men in
them, to make them more significant to us now than an exploding
casket of fireworks.  But steaming its way across the Atlantic a
few months before Jutland was fought came this other ship, a
passenger boat of the Scandinavian-American line, the Oscar II,
whose voyage remains to this day important and interesting, because
in the most simple and artless fashion it mingled the new
conceptions of life that were coming into being, with all the
prevalent weaknesses of the time.  The Oscar II is better known in
history as the Peace Ship of Henry Ford.  It is a gleam of tragic
comedy amidst the universal horror.

This Henry Ford was a very natural-minded mechanical genius,
without much education or social sophistication, a great friend of,
and kindred spirit with, that Edison whose career has been traced
in the chapter of human history dealing with the development and
exploitations of inventions at the close of the nineteenth and the
beginning of the twentieth century.  Born and brought up in a
period of economic expansion, Ford took economic expansion as if it
were a necessity inherent in things, and never began to doubt
continual progress until he was a man of over seventy.  That was
his good fortune.  That gave him the confidence to design an
automobile as sound and good and cheap as could be done at that
time, and to organize the mass production of his pattern with
extraordinary energy and skill, because his mind was untroubled by
the thought that there could be a limit to the number of possible
purchasers.  He marketed his "flivver", or "tin lizzie", as it was
affectionately called, in enormous quantities, and in consequence
he revolutionized the road transport and town planning of America.
He changed the shape of every growing town by enabling the small
householder to live further from the work and business centre than
had ever been possible before.  He did more than any other single
man to drive the horse not only from the road but, by making farm
tractors, from the fields.  He created factories at Dearborn that
even to-day seem vast.  He became enormously rich and an
outstanding "character" in the world, and particularly in America.
And he remained curiously simple and direct in his outlook upon

The first effect of the Great War upon him, as on a vast proportion
of the English-speaking peoples, was incredulous amazement.  He had
known there were armies and sovereign nations in the world, but
apparently he had never supposed they would fight.  He felt there
must be some mistake.  He exchanged views with other Americans in a
similar phase of astonishment.  By the beginning of 1915 they had
accumulated a sufficient mass of evidence from the belligerent
countries to convince them that great masses of people in these
countries were as amazed and as anxious to end the widening
bloodshed and brutalization as the neutral onlookers.  There had
been deputations to the President (President Wilson), who was at
that time, in harmony with his country, highly pacificist, and
there was a widespread ambition that the United States should evoke
some sort of permanent arbitration council alone, or in concert
with the other Powers still neutral, which should stand, so to
speak, on the edge of the battlefield and continue to offer its
mediatory services to the warring governments until they were
accepted.  There was the suggestion of a deputation to Europe to
further this idea, and the question arose how should it go across
the Atlantic.  Ford offered to charter a ship to take it.

Then his peculiar imagination seized upon his own offer.  He would
make this ship a spectacular ship; it should be the "Peace Ship".
It should take a complement of chosen delegates to Europe in such a
blaze of publicity that at its coming the war would be, as it were,
arrested, to look at it.  Its mere appearance would recall
infuriated Europe to its senses.  "I want to get those boys out of
the trenches," said Ford.  "They don't want to fight, and would be
only too glad to shake hands with each other."  At the back of his
mind there seems to have been an idea of calling a general strike
at the fronts.  "Out of the trenches by Christmas, never to return
again," was his brief speech at a public meeting in Washington in
November.  All sorts of eminent and energetic people were invited
to join the mission.  He sought the overt approval of the
President, but the President was far too seasoned a politician to
squander his publicity upon this "gesture" of Henry Ford's.  He was
meditating a gesture of his own later on.

American life at that time had its conspicuous popular stars, who
embodied its ideals of greatness and goodness.  Some of them are
still for various reasons remembered by the historian, Jane Addams
and Thomas Edison, for example, William Jennings Bryan (the "Last
Creationist") and Luther Burbank.  These names are still to be
found even in the Lower School Encyclopædia.  Ford tried to include
them all in one meteoric shipload.  The governors of all the states
in the Union were also invited, groups of representative university
students, and so on.  The Historical Collection at Atacama has
gathered all the surviving originals or replicas of Ford's
invitations, and the replies in which these outstanding individuals
hesitated over or evaded his proposals.  Several were only
prevented by sudden attacks of ill-health at the very last moment
from joining him.  And there was a number of newspaper reporters,
cinema operators and other photographers, stenographers, typists,
translators, interpreters, baggage masters and publicity agents who
made no trouble about coming.  A certain Madame Rosika Schwimmer,
an Hungarian lady, gleams forth and vanishes again from history as
the organizing spirit of this selection.  A vast multitude of
adventurers and crazy people offered to assist when Ford's project
was made public, and many were only prevented with the utmost
difficulty from coming aboard the Oscar II.

There is still material for a great writer in the details of that
expedition, but our interest here is neither with the expedition as
a whole nor with Ford or the other persons concerned in it as
personalities, but with this idea that flamed and faded, this idea
of 'an appeal against war to human sanity'.  And with the
vicissitudes of that idea.

The first thing to note is that it evoked response, and a very wide
response.  Eminent people, both in America and Europe, with their
popularity to consider, found it advisable to be sympathetic, even
if unhelpful.  President Wilson, for example, was sympathetic but
unhelpful.  All the pretentious weathercocks of the Western World
swung round towards it.  We have every indication indeed of a very
considerable drive towards a world pax in these years.  But
presently the weathercocks began to waver and swing away.

Why did they waver?  From the first there was a sustained,
malignant antagonism to the project.  This grew in force and
vigour.  The American Press, and in its wake the European Press,
set itself to magnify and distort every weakness, every slight
absurdity, in the expedition and to invent further weaknesses and
absurdities.  A campaign of ridicule began, so skilful and
persistent that it stripped away one blushing celebrity after
another from the constellation, and smothered the essential sanity
of the project in their wilting apologies.  While Ford and his
surviving missioners discussed and discoursed on their liner, the
newspaper men they had brought with them concocted lies and absurd
stories about their host--as though they were under instructions.

We know now they were under instructions.  The Historical Documents
Series makes this perfectly plain.

As our students disentangle strand after strand of that long hidden
story, we realize more and more clearly the tortuous dishonesty,
the confused double-mindedness, of the times.  The export trade of
the United States was flourishing under war conditions as it had
never flourished before.  Munitions of every sort were being sold
at enormously enhanced prices to the belligerents.  Such great
banking houses as Morgan and Co. were facilitating the financial
subjugation of Europe to America, through debts for these supplies.
It is clear that American finance and American Big Business had not
foreseen this.  They had no exceptional foresight.  But suddenly
they found themselves in a position of great advantage, and by all
their traditions they were bound to make use of that advantage.
And Ford in his infinite artlessness, "butting in", as they said,
"on things that were not his business", was setting out to destroy
this favourable state of affairs.

There was just enough plausibility in this endeavour to make it
seem dangerous.  Ford could not be ignored; his available publicity
was too great for that.  He was by no means beneath contempt; so he
had to be made contemptible.  With an earnestness worthy of a
better cause, the American Press was launched against him.  And it
was one of the strange traditions of the American Press that a
newsman should have no scruples.  The ordinary reporter was a moral
invert taking a real pride in his degradation.  No expedient was
too mean, no lie, no trick too contemptible if only it helped
thwart and disillusion Ford.

And they did thwart and disillusion him.  They got him wrong with
himself.  This half-baked man of genius, deserted by his friends,
lost confidence in his project.  He began to suspect his allies and
believe his enemies.

We have to accept the evidence preserved for us, but even with that
evidence before us, some of the details of that Press campaign
appear incredible.  There are a hundred gross files of newspaper
cuttings at Atacama, and some of the most amazing are reproduced in
the selected Historical Documents.  The reporters and writers, who
were abroad as Ford's guests, invented and sent home by wireless
fantastic reports of free fights among the members of the mission,
of disputes among the leaders, of Ford being chained to his bed by
his secretary, of mutinies and grotesque happenings.  Ford was told
of and could have prevented these radio messages being sent--it was
his ship for the time being--but a kind of fanaticism for free
opinion--even if in practice that meant free lying--restrained him.
"Let them do their darnedest," he said, still valiant.  "Our work
will speak for itself."

But presently he caught the influenza, a lowering disease long
since extinct but very rife in that period and, under clumsy
medical attention of the day, he arrived in Europe deflated and
tired, physically and morally, prepared now to believe that there
was something essentially foolish in the whole affair.  He had been
drenched in ridicule beyond his powers of resistance, and he was
giving way.  He gave way.

"Guess I had better go home to mother," said Mr. Ford, sick in bed
in Christiania, and kept to his room, though all Norway was agog to
greet and cheer him.

But his movement went on by the inertia it had gained.  His
delegation was received with great enthusiasm in Norway and
subsequently in Sweden, Switzerland, Denmark and Holland, those
small sovereign European states which contrived so dexterously to
keep out of the conflict to the end.  People in those countries
were evidently only too eager to believe that this novel
intervention might help to end the war.  If Ford was discouraged,
some of his associates were of more persistent material.  They held
great public meetings in Sweden, Holland and Switzerland, and the
repercussion of their activities certainly had a heartening effect
on the peace movement in Germany and Britain.  They contrived to
get speech with a number of politicians and statesmen, and they
roused the watchful hostility of the German and British War
authorities--for the military chiefs of both sides regarded this
mission very properly as an attack on war morale.  A Neutral
Conference for Continuous Mediation came into being--very
precarious being--in Stockholm.  It is claimed that it checked a
movement to bring Sweden into the war on the side of the Germans.

Then gradually the Ford Organization for Peace lost prominence.  It
was overshadowed by greater movements towards negotiation, and more
particularly by the large uncertain gestures of President Wilson,
who, re-elected as "the man who kept the United States out of the
war," brought his people from a phase of hypocritical pacificism
and energetic armament into the war in 1917.  Before that
culmination the Peace Ship bladder had collapsed altogether.  Its
last typist and photographer and clerk had been paid off, and Ford
himself was already doing all that was humanly possible to draw a
blanket of oblivion over that unforgettable Peace Ship.  But the
records have been too much for him.

He had not led his expeditionary force in Europe, even nominally,
for more than five weeks.  He had kept to his Norwegian hotel,
avoided his more enthusiastic associates, started a vigorous
reduction of his financial commitments, and finally bolted home.
He deserted.  He left his hotel at Christiania, stealthily, at five
o'clock in the morning, and, in spite of the pleadings of those of
his party who, warned at the last minute, tumbled out of bed to
protest, he got away.  Before the year was out he had ceased even
financial support, and the various men and women who had abandoned
careers and positions and faced ridicule and odium in complete
faith in his simplicity were left to find their way back to their
former niches or discover fresh ones.

Now what had happened to his great idea?  What strange reversal of
motive had occurred in the brain and heart of this Peace Crusader?
There the curious historian must needs speculate, for that brain
and heart have gone now beyond all closer scrutiny.

It has to be noted first that while the Peace Ship was on the
Atlantic something very significant was going on at Washington.
The swiftly growing munition industries of America had discovered
that a home market for their products, a home market of superior
solvency, might be added to the vast demands of the fighting
nations overseas.  America, it was argued, might keep out of the
war--well and good--but nevertheless America must be "prepared."
The United States must arm.  The President had weighed this
proposal with a due regard for the votes and Press support that
would come to him at the next election; he had weighed it very
carefully as became a politician, and after some resistance he
consented that America should be "prepared".  Munitions should be
assembled, troops should be drilled.  Flags began to wave--and the
United States flag was a very intoxicating one--and drums and
trumpets to sound.  Military excitement stirred through that vast
pacific population and rose.

And Ford had a mighty industrial plant hitherto engaged in pouring
out motor-cars and agricultural material, but capable of rapid
adaptation to the production of war material.  It was his creation;
it was his embodiment.  It was all that made him visibly different
from any other fellow in the street.  His friends and family had
certainly watched his abandonment of business for world affairs
with profound misgiving.  It may have been plain to them before it
was plain to him, that if he stood out of this "preparedness"
movement as he threatened to do, other great plants would arise
beside his own, to produce war material indeed at first, but
capable when the war was over of a reverse transformation into
great factories for the mass production of motorcars and the like.
In France this transference from munitions to automobiles was
actually foreseen and carried out by the Citröen organization.  It
is impossible that this prospect could have escaped Ford.

But in his haste he had declared himself against preparedness.  He
had threatened to hoist an "international flag" over his works in
the place of the Stars and Stripes. . . .

It is clear that in that one lively brain all the main forces of
the time were at work.  It had responded vividly and generously to
the new drive towards a worldpax.  Lochner (America's Don Quixote,
1924) reports him thus on his sailing from New York:

"Have you any last word to say?" a journalist enquired.

"Yes," he replied.  "Tell the people to cry peace and fight

"What if this expedition fails?" ventured another.

"If this expedition fails I'll start another," he flashed without a
moment's hesitation.

"People say you are not sincere," commented a third. . . .

"We've got peace-talk going now, and I'll pound it to the end."

And afterwards came those second thoughts.  When, in 1917, the
United States entered the war, the Peace Ship was a stale old joke
and the vast Ford establishments were prepared and ready for the
production of munitions.

Ford was a compendium of his age.  That is why we give him this
prominence in our history.  The common man of the twentieth century
was neither a pacifist nor a war-monger.  He was both--and Ford was
just a common man made big by accident and exceptional energy.

The main thread in the history of the twentieth century is
essentially the drama of the indecisions manifested in their
elementary plainness by Ford on board his Peace Ship.  That voyage
comes therefore like a tin-whistle solo by way of overture, to the
complex orchestration of human motive in the great struggle for
human unity that lay ahead.

9.  The Direct Action of the Armament Industries in Maintaining
    War Stresses

We must now say something about the direct activities of the
hypertrophied "armament firms" in bringing about and sustaining the
massacres of the Great War.  A proper understanding of that
influence is essential if the stresses and martyrdoms of the middle
years of the twentieth century are to be understood.

These "armament firms" were an outcome of the iron and steel
industry, which in a few score years between 1700 and 1850 grew up--
no man objecting--from a modest activity of artisans to relatively
gigantic possibilities of production.  This industry covered the
world with a network of railways, and produced iron and then steel
steamships to drive the wooden sailing ships off the seas.  And at
an early stage (all this is traced in full detail in Luke Zimmern's
Entwickelung und Geschichte von Kruppismus, 1913; Hist. Doc.
394112) it turned its attention to the weapons in the world.

In a perpetual progress in the size and range of great guns, in a
vast expansion of battleships that were continually scrapped in
favour of larger or more elaborate models, it found a most
important and inexhaustible field of profit.  The governments of
the world were taken unawares, and in a little while the industry,
by sound and accepted methods of salesmanship, was able to impose
its novelties upon these ancient institutions with their tradition
of implacable mutual antagonism.  It was realized very soon that
any decay of patriotism and loyalty would be inimical to this great
system of profits, and the selling branch of the industry either
bought directly or contrived to control most of the great
newspapers of the time, and exercised a watchful vigilance on the
teaching of belligerence in schools.  Following the established
rules and usages for a marketing industrialism, and with little
thought of any consequences but profits, the directors of these
huge concerns built up the new warfare that found its first
exposition in the Great War of 1914-18, and gave its last desperate
and frightful convulsions in the Polish wars of 1940 and the
subsequent decades.

Even at its outset in 1914-18 this new warfare was extraordinarily
uncongenial to humanity.  It did not even satisfy man's normal
combative instincts.  What an angry man wants to do is to beat and
bash another living being, not to be shot at from ten miles
distance or poisoned in a hole.  Instead of drinking delight of
battle with their peers, men tasted all the indiscriminating terror
of an earthquake.  The war literature stored at Atacama, to which
we have already referred, is full of futile protest against the
horror, the unsportsmanlike quality, the casual filthiness and
indecency, the mechanical disregard of human dignity of the new
tactics.  But such protest itself was necessarily futile, because
it did not go on to a clear indictment of the forces that were
making, sustaining and distorting war.  The child howled and wept
and they did not even attempt to see what it was had tormented it.

To us nowadays it seems insane that profit-making individuals and
companies should have been allowed to manufacture weapons and sell
the apparatus of murder to all comers.  But to the man of the late
nineteenth and early twentieth centuries it seemed the most natural
thing in the world.  It had grown up in an entirely logical and
necessary way, without any restraint upon the normal marketing
methods of peace-time commerce, from the continually more extensive
application of new industrial products to warfare.  Even after the
World War catastrophe, after that complete demonstration of the
futility of war, men still allowed themselves to be herded like
sheep into the barracks, to be trained to consume, and be consumed,
by new lines of slaughter goods produced and marketed by the still
active armament traders.  And the accumulation of a still greater
and still more dangerous mass of war material continued.

There is a queer little pseudo-scientific essay by a Bengali
satirist (Professor K. Chondra Sen, 1897-1942) among the India
series of reprints, professing to be a study of the relative
stupidity of the more intelligent animals up to and including man.
He is concerned by the fatuity with which the mass of humanity
watched the preparation of its own destruction during this period.
He considers the fate of various species of penguins which were
then being swept out of the world--the twentieth century was an age
of extermination for hundreds of species--and infers a similar
destiny for mankind.  He begins with the slaughter of the penguins;
he gives photographs of these extraordinary creatures in their
multitudes, gathered on the beaches of Oceanic islands and watching
the advance of their slayers.  One sees them scattered over a long
sloping shore, standing still, or waddling about or flapping their
stumpy wings while the massacre goes on.  They seem to be vaguely
interested in the killing of their fellows, but in no way stirred
either to flight or resistance.  (No thorough scientific
observations, we may note, were ever made of penguin mentality, the
revival of experimental psychology comes too late for that, and we
are left now to guess at what went on in these queer brains of
theirs during these raids.  There is evidence to show that these
creatures had curiosity, kindliness, sympathy and humour; and they
were eminently teachable.  They stood quite high in the scale of
bird intelligence.  And yet they permitted their own extinction.)
They were not so much a-mental, Professor Sen insists, half
seriously, half mockingly, as defective and wrong.  They were
capable of many idea systems but not of the idea of social
preservation.  He suggests, too, that the same was true of the sea
elephants which were also very rapidly destroyed.  (The last of
these were murdered later "to make a record" by a Japanese lunatic
with a craving for an "immortal Name" when the protective patrol
was withdrawn during the "revolt of the sea pirates" in C.E. 1985.)
But after Professor Sen has weighed every possible case, he still
awards the palm for complaisant social stupidity to man.

With a fine parody of the social research methods of that time, he
gives various photographs of what he calls the "human penguins" of
that early Twentieth Century, waddling in their sleek thousands to
see battleships launched, to rejoice over reviews and parades, to
watch their army aeroplanes stunting in the sky.  Side by side he
gives photographs of penguin assemblies that, either by happy
accident or skilful rearrangement, are absurdly parallel.  He gives
lists of shareholders in the armament firms, including the current
Bishop of Hereford, the current President of the Free Church
Council, a great multitude of clergymen, artists, judges and every
sort of gentlefolk.  He quotes extensively from the Hansard records
of various debates in the British House of Commons (in a debate on
the Naval Estimates early in 1914, Philip Snowden, the radical
socialist who afterwards became Viscount Snowden, was particularly
explicit), showing that the nature of the danger was clearly seen
and clearly and publicly stated.  Only it was not FELT.  It is upon
that little difference between factual apprehension and the kind of
apprehension that leads to effective action that our interest
concentrates here.

Why did humanity gape at the guns and do nothing?  And why, after
the Great War, after that generation had seen over twenty million
human beings perish painfully and untimely did it still go on,
doing nothing adequate to the occasion?  With the preparations
still mounting up and the horrible possibilities of war increasing
under its eyes?  The great Cradle of Bethlehem Steel Corporation of
America in 1929 was revealed as actively opposing naval disarmament
at the Geneva Conference of 1927.  At any rate it was associated
with three shipbuilding companies who were sued by a Mr. Shearer,
who claimed to have been given that task, for fees alleged to be
due to him.  There seems to have been little dispute that he had
been so employed; the case turned upon the extent of his services
and the amount of his fees.  Nothing was done by the penguins
either to the companies concerned or to Mr. Shearer.  A few
expressed indignation; that was all.  Just as now and then no doubt
a bird or so squawked at the oil hunters.  For a detailed account
and references see The Navy: Defence or Portent by C. A. Beard,
1930, reprinted Hist. Doc. Series 4,270,112.

The clue lies in the fact that there was practically no
philosophical education at all in the world, no intelligent
criticism of generalizations and general ideas.  There was no
science of social processes at all.  People were not trained to
remark the correlations of things; for the most part they were not
aware that there was any correlation between things; they imagined
this side of life might change and that remain unaltered.  The
industrialists and financiers built up these monstrous armaments
and imposed them on the governments of the time, with a disregard
of consequences that seems now absolutely imbecile.  Most of these
armament propagandists were admirable in their private lives:
gentle lovers, excellent husbands, fond of children and animals,
good fellows, courteous to inferiors, and so on.  Sir Basil
Zaharoff, the greatest of munition salesmen, as one sees him in the
painting (ascribed to Orpen) recently discovered in Paris, with his
three-cornered hat, his neat little moustaches and beardlet, and
the ribbon of some Order of Chivalry about his neck, looks quite a
nice, if faintly absurd, little gentleman.  Those shareholding
bishops and clergy may, for anything we know to the contrary, have
had charming personalities.  But they wanted their dividends.  And
in order to pay them those dividends, the dread of war and the need
of war had to be kept alive in the public mind.

That was done most conveniently through the Press.  You could buy a
big newspaper in those days, lock, stock and barrel, for five or
ten million dollars, and the profits made on one single battleship
came to more than that.  Naturally, and according to the best
business traditions, the newspapers hired or sold themselves to the
war salesmen.  What was wrong in that?  Telling the news in those
days was a trade, not a public duty.  A daily paper that had dealt
faithfully with this accumulating danger would quite as naturally
and necessarily have found its distribution impeded, have found
itself vigorously outdone by more richly endowed competitors, able
because of their wealth to buy up all the most attractive features,
able to outdo it in every way with the common reader.

It wasn't that the newspaper owners and the munition dealers
wanted anyone hurt.  They only wanted to sell equipment and see
it used up.  Nor was it that the newspapers desired the wholesale
mangling and butchering of human beings.  They wanted sales and
advertisements.  The butchery was quite by the way, an unfortunate
side issue to legitimate business.  Shortsightedness is not
diabolical, even if it produces diabolical results.

And even those soldiers?  Freudheim, in his analysis of the
soldierly mind, shows a picture of that Sir Henry Wilson we have
already mentioned, arrayed in shirt-sleeves and digging modestly in
the garden of his villa during a phase of retirement, and the same
individual smirking in all his glory, buttons, straps and
"decorations", as a director of military operations.  It is an
amazing leap from the suburban insignificance of a retired clerk to
godlike importance.  In peace time, on the evidence of his own
diaries, this Wilson was a tiresome nobody, an opinionated bore; in
war he passed beyond criticism and became a god.  One understands
at once what a vital matter employment and promotion must have been
to him.  But so far as we can tell he desired no killing AS
killing.  If he had been given blood to drink he would probably
have been sick.  Yet he lived upon tanks of blood.

These professional soldiers thought of slaughter as little as
possible.  It is preposterous to say they desired it, much less
that they gloated over it.  It might have fared better with their
men if they had thought of it more.  They had an age-old
sentimental devotion to their country, a solemn sense of great
personal worth in their services, an orgiastic delight of battle.
And they did not see, nor want to see, what was beyond their
occupation.  Their religious teachers were quite ready to assure
them they were correct in all they did and were.

The senescent Christian Churches of that age had indeed a very
direct interest in war.  A marked tendency to ignore or ridicule
the current religious observances had become manifest, but under
the stresses of loss and death people turned again to the altar.
It is easily traceable in the fiction of the time.  The despised
curate of the tea-cups and croquet lawn became the implicitly
heroic "padre" of the sentimental war stories.

The problem that confronted the growing minority that was waking up
to the perils and possibilities of our species in the third and
fourth decades of the twentieth century was this:  How in the first
place to concentrate the minds of people onto this state of
distraction and diffusion, how to bring them to bear upon the crude
realities before them, and then how to organize the gigantic effort
needed to shake off that intermittent and ever more dangerous fever
of war and that chronic onset of pauperization which threatened the
whole world with social dissolution.

There was no central antagonist, no ruling devil, for those
anxious spirits to fight.  That would have made it a straight,
understandable campaign.  But the Press with a certain flavouring
of pious intentions was practically against them.  Old social and
political traditions, whatever the poses they assumed, were tacitly
against them.  History was against them, for it could but witness
that war had always gone on since its records began.  Not only the
current Bishop of Hereford, and the current President of the Free
Church Council, caught with their dividends upon them, but their
Churches and the Catholic Church, and indeed all the Christian
Churches, in spite of their allegiance to the Prince of Peace, were
quietly competitive with, or antagonistic to, the secular world
controls that alone could make a healthy world peace possible.  The
admission of the insufficiency of their own creeds to comfort or
direct would have been the necessary prelude to a new moral effort.

And the idea of the naturalness and inevitability of war was not
only everywhere in the world around those few forward-looking men
who knew better, it was in their blood and habits.  They were
seeking how to attack not a fortress, but what seemed a perpetually
recuperative jungle of mixed motives, tangled interests and cross-
purposes, within themselves as without.

10.  Versailles: Seed Bed of Disasters

The formal war, against the Central Powers, the "World War", ended
on November 11, 1918, C.E. in the defeat and submission of the
Central Powers.  There was a conference at Versailles, in the same
palace in which triumphant Germans had dictated peace to France
after a previous war in 1870-71.  There was a needlessly dramatic
flavour in this reversal of the rôles of the two countries.  It was
now France and her allies who dictated, and naturally the ideas of
a romantic restoration and a stern and righteous judgment dominated
the situation.  The assembled Powers sat down to right the wrongs
and punish the misdeeds of their grandparents.  Even at the time it
seemed a little belated.  But threading their proceedings we do
find quite plainly evident the developing conflict between
historical tradition and the quickening sense of human unity in the
world.  If the World-State was not present at the conference, its
voice was at any rate "heard without".

By this time (1919 C.E.) there was indeed quite a considerable
number of intelligent people in the world who had realized the
accumulating necessity of a world government, and a still larger
multitude, like that Henry Ford we have described, who had
apprehended it instinctively and sentimentally, but there was no
one yet who had had the intellectual vigour to attack in earnest
the problem of substituting a world system for the existing
governments.  Men's minds and hearts quailed before that
undertaking.  And yet, as we now know so clearly, it was the only
thing for them to do.  It was the sole alternative to an ever-
broadening and deepening series of disasters.  But its novelty and
vastness held them back.  Irrational habit kept them in the ancient
currents of history.

To us they seem like drowning men who were willing to attempt to
save themselves by rallies of swimming, floating, holding on to
straws and bubbles, but who refused steadfastly, in spite of the
proximity of a ladder, to clamber out of the water for good and

Hardly any of them in their ideas of a world system dared go beyond
a purely political agreement for the avoidance of war.  Five
decades of human distress were still needed before there was to be
any extensive realization that belligerence was only one symptom,
and by no means the gravest symptom, of human disunion.

The American President Woodrow Wilson, of all the delegates to the
Peace Conference, was the most susceptible to the intimations of
the future.  The defects and limitations of his contributions to
that settlement give us a measure of the political imagination of
those days.  He brought what was left of the individualistic
liberalism that had created the American Republics to the solution
of the world problem.  None of the other participants in these
remarkable discussions--Clemenceau (France), Lloyd George
(Britain), Sonnino (Italy), Saionji (Japan), Hymans (Belgium),
Paderewski (Poland), Bratianu (Roumania), Benes (Bohemia),
Venezelos (Greece), Feisal (Hedjaz), and so on through a long
list of now fading names--seemed aware that, apart from any
consideration of national advantage, humanity as a whole might
claim an interest in the settlement.  They were hard-shell
"representatives", national advocates.  For a brief interval Wilson
stood alone for mankind.  Or at least he seemed to stand for
mankind.  And in that brief interval there was a very extraordinary
and significant wave of response to him throughout the earth.  So
eager was the situation that all humanity leapt to accept and
glorify Wilson--for a phrase, for a gesture.  It seized upon him as
its symbol.  He was transfigured in the eyes of men.  He ceased to
be a common statesman; he became a Messiah.  Millions believed him
as the bringer of untold blessings; thousands would gladly have
died for him.  That response was one of the most illuminating
events in the early twentieth century.  Manifestly the World-State
had been conceived then, and now it stirred in the womb.  It was

And then for some anxious decades it ceased to stir.

Amidst different scenery and in different costumes, the story of
Wilson repeats the story of Ford, the story of a man lifted by an
idea too great for him, thrown up into conspicuousness for a little
while and then dropped, as a stray leaf may be spun up and dropped
by a gust of wind before a gale.  The essential Wilson, the world
was soon to learn, was vain and theatrical, with no depth of
thought and no wide generosity.  So far from standing for all
mankind, he stood indeed only for the Democratic Party in the
United States--and for himself.  He sacrificed the general support
of his people in America to party considerations and his prestige
in Europe to a craving for social applause.  For a brief season he
was the greatest man alive.  Then for a little while he remained
the most conspicuous.  He visited all the surviving courts of
Europe and was fêted and undone in every European capital.  That
triumphal procession to futility need not occupy us further here.
Our concern is with his idea.

Manifestly he wanted some sort of a world pax.  But it is doubtful
if at any time he realized that a world pax means a world control
of all the vital common interests of mankind.  He seems never to
have thought out this job to which he set his hand so confidently.
He did not want, or, if he did, he did not dare to ask for, any
such centralized world controls as we now possess.  They were
probably beyond the range of his reading and understanding.  His
project from first to last was purely a politician's project.

The pattern conceived by him was a naïve adaptation of the
parliamentary governments of Europe and America to a wider union.
His League, as it emerged from the Versailles Conference, was a
typical nineteenth-century government enlarged to planetary
dimensions and greatly faded in the process; it had an upper
chamber, the Council, and a lower chamber, the Assembly, but, in
ready deference to national susceptibilities, it had no executive
powers, no certain revenues, no army, no police, and practically no
authority to do anything at all.  And even as a political body it
was remote and ineffective; it was not in any way representative of
the peoples of the earth as distinguished from the governments of
the earth.  Practically nothing was done to make the common people
of the world feel that the League was theirs.  Its delegates were
appointed by the Foreign Offices of the very governments its only
conceivable rôle was to supersede.  They were national politicians
and they were expected to go to Geneva to liquidate national
politics.  The League came into being at last, a solemn simulacrum
to mock, cheat and dispel the first desire for unity that mankind
had ever betrayed.

Yet what else was possible then?  If Wilson seemed to embody the
formless aspirations of mankind, there can be no dispute that he
impressed the politicians with whom he had to deal as a profoundly
insincere visionary.  They dealt with him as that and they beat him
as that.  The only way to have got anything more real than this
futile League would have been a revolutionary appeal to the war-
weary peoples of the earth against their governments, to have said,
as indeed he could have said in 1918, to the whole world that the
day of the World-State had come.  That would have reverberated to
the ends of the earth.

He was not the man to do that.  He had not that power of
imagination.  He had not that boldness with governments.  He had
the common politician's way of regarding great propositions as a
means to small ends.  If he had been bolder and greater, he might
have failed, he might have perished; but he failed and perished
anyhow; and a bolder bid for world unity might have put the real
issue before mankind for ever and shortened the Age of Frustration
by many decades.

What he did do was to reap an immediate harvest of popular
applause, to present to human hope a white face rigid with self-
approval, bowing from processional carriages and decorated
balconies, retiring gravely into secret conference with the
diplomatists and politicians of the old order and emerging at last
with this League of Nations, that began nothing and ended nothing
and passed in a couple of decades out of history.

It was a League not to end sovereignties but preserve them.  It
stipulated that the extraordinarily ill-contrived boundaries
established by the Treaty in which it was incorporated should be
guaranteed by the League for EVERMORE.  Included among other
amiable arrangements were clauses penalizing Germany and her allies
as completely as Carthage was penalized by Rome after the disaster
of Zamia--penalizing her in so overwhelming a way as to make
default inevitable and afford a perennial excuse for her continued
abasement.  It was not a settlement, it was a permanent punishment.
The Germans were to become the penitent helots of the conquerors; a
generation, whole generations, were to be born and die in debt, and
to ensure the security of this arrangement Germany was to be
effectually disarmed and kept disarmed.

Delenda est Germanic was the sole idea of the French (see Morris
Henbane's Study of Pertinax, 1939) and the representatives of the
other Allies who were gathered together in the Paris atmosphere,
and, working amidst the vindictive memories of Versailles, were
only too ready to fall in with this punitive conception of their
task.  It was the easiest conception; it put a hundred difficult
issues into a subordinate place.  It always looks so much easier to
men of poor imagination to put things back than to carry them on.
If the French dreaded a resurrection of the German armies, the
British feared a resurrection of the German fleet and of German
industrial competition.  Japan and Italy, seeking their own
compensations elsewhere, were content to see the German-speaking
peoples, who constituted the backbone of the continent, divided and
reduced to vassalage.

The antiquated form of Wilson's ideas produced still more
mischievous consequences in the multiplication of sovereign
governments in the already congested European area.  Deluded by the
vague intimations of unity embodied in the League, Wilson lent
himself readily to a reconstruction of the map of Europe upon
strictly nationalist lines.  The Polish nation was restored.  Our
history has already studied the successive divisions of this
country in the eighteenth century.  It is a great region of the
Central Plain, whose independent existence became more and more
inconvenient as the trade and commerce of Europe developed.
Geography fought against it.  It was a loose-knit union of
individualistic equestrian aristocrats dominating a peasantry.  But
its partition between Russia, Prussia and Austria was achieved with
the utmost amount of brutality, and after the Napoleonic wars a
romantic legend about this lost kingdom of Poland seized upon the
sentiment of France, Britain and America.  These rude nobles and
their serfs, so roughly incorporated by the adjacent states, were
transfigured into a delicate, brave and altogether wonderful
people, a people with a soul torn asunder and trampled underfoot by
excessively booted oppressors.  The restoration of Poland--the
excessive restoration of Poland--was one of the brightest ambitions
of President Wilson.

Poland was restored.  But instead of a fine-spirited and generous
people emerging from those hundred and twenty years of subjugation,
and justifying the sympathy and hopes of liberalism throughout the
world, there appeared a narrowly patriotic government, which
presently developed into an aggressive, vindictive and pitiless
dictatorship, and set itself at once to the zestful persecution of
the unfortunate ethnic minorities (about a third of the entire
population) caught in the net of its all too ample boundaries.  The
real Poland of the past had been a raiding and aggressive nation
which had ridden and harried to the very walls of Moscow.  It had
not changed its nature.  The Lithuanian city of Vilna was now
grabbed by a coup de main and the southeastern boundary pushed
forward in Galicia.  In the treatment of the Ukrainians and
Ruthenians involved in liberation, Poland equalled any of the
atrocities which had been the burden of her song during her years
of martyrdom.  In 1932 one-third of the budget of this new militant
Power was for armament.

Not only was Poland thus put back upon the map.  As a result of a
sedulous study of historical sentimentalities, traditions, dialects
and local feelings, a whole cluster of new sovereign Powers,
Czechoslovakia, Jugoslavia, Finland, Esthonia, Latvia, Lithuania,
an attenuated Hungary and an enlarged Roumania, was evoked to crowd
and complicate the affairs of mankind by their sovereign liberties,
their ambitions, hostilities, alliances, understandings,
misunderstandings, open and secret treaties, tariffs, trade wars
and the like.  Russia was excluded from the first attempt at a
World Parliament because she had repudiated her vast war debts--
always a matter of grave solicitude to the Western creditor, and--
strangest fact of all in this strange story--the United States, the
Arbitrator and Restorer of Nations, stood out from the League,
because President Wilson's obstinate resolve to monopolize the
immortal glory of World Salvation for himself and his party had
estranged a majority of his senators.

The Senate, after some attempts at compromise, rejected the
Covenant of the League altogether, washed its hands of world
affairs, and the President, instead of remaining for ever Prince of
Everlasting Peace and Wonder of the Ages, shrank again very rapidly
to human proportions and died a broken and disappointed man.  Like
Ford, the United States returned to normal business and the Profit
and Loss Account, and the Europeans were left with the name of
Wilson written all over their towns, upon streets, avenues,
esplanades, railway stations, parks and squares, to make what they
could of this emasculated League he had left about among their

If Russia and Germany in their character of Bad Peoples were
excluded from the League, such remote peoples as the Chinese and
the Japanese were included as a matter of course.  It was assumed,
apparently, that they were "just fellows" of the universal Treaty-
of-Westphalia pattern.  The European world knew practically nothing
of the mental processes of these remote and ancient communities,
and it seems hardly to have dawned upon the conferring statesmen
that political processes rest entirely upon mental facts.  The
League, after much difficulty, and after some years' delay, did
indeed evolve a Committee of Intellectual Cooperation, but so far
as its activities can now be traced, this was concerned with
dilettante intellectualism only; there is no indication that it
ever interested itself in the League as an idea.

Considering all things in the light of subsequent events, it would
have been well if the League of Nations had committed hara-kiri
directly the United States Senate refused participation, and if the
European Powers, realizing their failure to stabilize the planet at
one blow, had set themselves at once to the organization of a
League of Conciliation and Cooperation within the European area.
The League's complete inability to control or even modify the
foreign policy of Japan (modelled on the best nineteenth-century
European patterns) was the decisive factor in its declension to a
mere organization of commentary upon current affairs.

As its authority declined the courage and pungency of its reports
increased.  Some of the later ones are quite admirable historical
documents.  Gradually the member governments discontinued their
subsidies and the secretariat dwindled to nothing.  Like the Hague
Tribunal, the League faded out of existence before or during the
Famished Fifties.  It does not figure in history after the first
Polish war, but its official buildings were intact in 1965, and in
1968, and for some years later, they were used as auxiliary offices
by the Western branch of the Transport Union.

The imposition of vast monetary payments upon Germany was the only
part of the settlement of Versailles that dealt with the financial
and economic life of our race.  Astounding as this seems to us to-
day, it was the most natural oversight possible to the Versailles
politicians.  Political life was still deep in the old purely
combatant tradition, still concentrated upon boundaries and
strategic advantages; and it was extraordinarily innocent in the
face of economic realities.  The mighty forces demanding economic
unification, albeit they were, as we have shown, the real causes of
the Great War, were ignored at Versailles as completely as if they
had never existed.

Only one outstanding voice, that of the British economist J. M.
Keynes (Economic Consequences of the Peace, 1919), was audible at
the time in protest and warning against the preposterous
dislocation of credit and trade involved in the reparation
payments.  There was no arrangement whatever for the liquidation of
the debts piled up by the Allies AGAINST EACH OTHER (!), and no
economic parallel to the political League of Nations.  No control
of economic warfare was even suggested.  The Americans, Wilson
included, were still in a stage of financial individualism; they
thought money-getting was an affair of individual smartness within
the limits of the law, and the American conception of law was of
something that presented interesting obstacles rather than
effectual barriers to enlightened self-seeking.  The contemporary
American form of mutual entertainment was a poker party, and that
great people therefore found nothing inimical in sitting down after
the war to play poker, with France and Great Britain as its chief
opponents, for the gold and credit of the world.

It was only slowly during the decade following after the war that
the human intelligence began to realize that the Treaty of
Versailles had not ended the war at all.  It had set a truce to the
bloodshed, but it had done so only to open a more subtle and
ultimately more destructive phase in the traditional struggle of
the sovereign states.  The existence of independent sovereign
states IS war, white or red, and only an elaborate mis-education
blinded the world to this elementary fact.  The peoples of the
defeated nations suffered from a real if not very easily defined
sense of injustice in this Treaty, which was framed only for them
to sign, and sign in the rôle of wrongdoers brought to book.  Very
naturally they were inspired by an ill-concealed resolve to revise,
circumvent or disregard its provisions at the earliest possible
opportunity.  The conquering Powers, on the other hand, were
conscious of having not only humiliated their defeated enemies but
thrust them into a state of exasperated disadvantage.  The thought
of a revanche was equally present therefore to the victors, and
instead of disarming as the Germans were compelled to do, they
broke the obligations of the Treaty and retained and increased
their military establishments.

The armament firms and their newspapers naturally did all they
could to intensify this persistence in an armed "security".  Any
disposition on the part of the French public, for instance, to lay
aside its weapons was promptly checked by tales of secret arsenals
and furtive drilling in Germany.  And the narrow patriotic forces
that guided France not only kept her extravagantly armed against
her fallen foe, but carried on a subtle but ruthless financial
warfare that, side by side with the American game, overcame every
effort of Germany to recover socially or economically.

Moreover, the conquering Powers, so soon as they considered their
former antagonists conclusively disposed of, turned themselves
frankly, in full accordance with the traditions of the sovereign
state system, to the task of getting the better of each other in
the division of the spoils.  Their "Alliances" had brought about no
sense of community.  Already within a year of the signing of the
Peace Treaty of Versailles heavy fighting was going on in Asia
Minor between the Greeks and the Turks.  The Greeks had British
encouragement; the French and Italians had supported the Turks.  It
was a war of catspaws.  This war culminated in a disastrous rout of
the Greeks and the burning of the town of Smyrna.  This last was a
quite terrible massacre; multitudes of women and children were
outraged, men and boys gouged, emasculated or killed; all but the
Turkish quarter was looted and burnt.  The quays in front of the
flaming town were dense with terror-stricken crowds, hoping against
hope to get away upon some ship before they were fallen upon,
robbed, butchered, or thrust into the water.

A little before this the Turks had driven the French out of the
ancient province of Cilicia, and had completed the extermination of
that ancient people the Hittites or Armenians.  During the war or
after the war mattered little to the Armenians, for fire and sword
pursued them still.  Over two million died--for the most part
violent deaths.

Fighting still went on after the Great Peace in the north and south
of Russia and in eastern Siberia; and China became a prey to armies
of marauders.  Poland seized Vilna, invaded eastern Galicia and
fought Russia in the Ukraine, and a raid of patriotic Italians
expelled a mixed Allied garrison from Fiume.

Presently there was a dreadful famine in south-east Russia which
neither America nor Europe was able to alleviate.  Always before
the war a famine in any part of the world had exercised the
philanthropic element in the Anglo-Saxon community.  But
philanthropy had lost heart.  There was a faint but insufficient
flutter of the old habits in America but none in Britain.

Such was the peace and union of the world immediately achieved by
the Conference of Versailles.

A number of unsatisfactory appendices and patches had presently to
be made to correct the most glaring defects and omissions of the
Treaty.  Constantinople, which had been taken from the Turks and
held by a mixed force of the Allies, was restored to them in 1923
after the Smyrna massacre and some warlike gesticulation between
them and the British.

In drawing the boundaries of the new and revised states of the
European patchwork there was the utmost disregard of economic
commonsense; peasants would find themselves cut off from winter or
summer pasture or from market towns which had been developed by
their needs.  Great foundries and chemical and metallurgical works
were separated from the ores and deposits on which they relied.
Vienna, once the financial and business centre of all south-east
Central Europe, was decapitated.  Most fantastic and, as it proved,
most disastrous of all the follies of Versailles, was the creation
of the free city of Danzig and what was called the Polish Corridor.

Let us note a point or so about this latter tangle to illustrate
the mental quality of the Conference at its worst.  Here more than
anywhere else did the simple romantic idea that the Germans were
Bad, and that anyone opposed to the Germans was without
qualification Good, rule the situation.  The Poles were Good, and
they were the chosen of the Allies, the particular protégés of the
sentimental historian from America.  He had come to put down the
mighty from their seats and to exalt the humble and the meek.  The
hungry and eager were to be filled with good things and the rich,
the erstwhile rich, were to be sent empty away.  Germany, like
Dives in hell, was to look up and see Poland like Lazarus in
Woodrow Wilson's bosom.  Not only were the Good Poles to be given
dominion over Ruthenians, Ukrainians, Jews (whom particularly they
detested), Lithuanians, White Russians and Germans, they were to
have also something of profound economic importance--"access to the

On that President Wilson had been very insistent.  Switzerland had
done very well in pre-war Europe without access to the sea, but
that was another story.  The difficulty was that by no stretch of
ethnic map-colouring could Poland be shown to border on the sea.  A
belt of Pomeranians and Germans stretched across the mouth of the
Vistula, and the only possibility of a reasonable trading outlet to
the sea, so far as Poland needed such an outlet--for most of its
trade was with its immediate neighbours--was through an
understanding with that belt of people.  That would have been easy
enough to arrange.  At the mouth of the Vistula stood the entirely
German city of Danzig.  It lived mainly as an outlet for Polish
trade, and it could prosper in no other way.  There was no reason
to suppose it would put any difficulties in the way of Polish
imports and exports.  It was an ancient, honest, clean and
prosperous German city.  Ninety-six per cent of its inhabitants
were German.

This was the situation to which the Conference of Versailles, under
the inspiration of that magic phrase "access to the sea", turned
its attention.  Even the profound belief of the Conquerors that
there were no Germans but bad Germans could not justify their
turning over Danzig itself to Polish rule.  But they separated it
from Germany and made it into a "free city", and to the west of it
they achieved that "access to the sea" of Wilson's, by annexing a
broad band of Pomeranian territory to Poland.  (This was the actual
"Corridor" of the controversies.)  It had no port to compare with
Danzig, but the Poles set themselves to create a rival in Gdynia,
which should be purely Polish, and which should ultimately starve
the trading Germans out of Danzig.

And to keep the waters of the Vistula as pure and sweet for Poland
as the existence of Danzig at the estuary allowed, the peace-makers
ran the Vistula boundary between Poland and east Prussia, not in
the usual fashion midway along the stream, but at a little distance
on the east Prussian side.  (Jacques Kayser, La Paix en Péril,
1931; Hist. Doc., 711711.)  So that the east German population, the
peasant cultivator, the erstwhile fisherman, the shepherd with his
flocks to water, was pulled up by a line of frontier posts and a
Polish rifle within sight of the stream.  Moreover, that eastward
country was flat and low-lying and had hitherto been protected from
floods and a relapse to marsh conditions by a line of dykes.  The
frontier cut that line five times, and since the Poles had no
interest whatever in these defences, they fell rapidly out of
repair.  Further along the boundary cut off the great towns of
Garnsee and Bischofswerder from their railway station.

But we must not lose ourselves in the details of this exasperating
settlement.  The maximum of irritation developed in the absurd
Corridor itself.  The current of traffic had hitherto run to and
fro between east and west, the trend of the railways was in that
direction; the traffic in the north and south direction had come to
Danzig along the great river.  Now the Poles set themselves to
obstruct both these currents and to wrench round all the
communications into a north and south direction avoiding Danzig.
Every German going east or west found himself subjected to a series
of frontier examinations, to tariff payments, to elaborate delays,
to such petty but memorable vexations as that all the windows of an
express train passing across the Corridor should be closed, and so
forth, and the city of Danzig, cut off from German trade, found its
Polish business being steadily diverted to Gdynia.  French capital
was poured into Gdynia and into its new railway to the south, so
that French financial interests were speedily entangled in the

The indignity and menace of Danzig burnt into the German
imagination.  That Corridor fretted it as nothing else in the peace
settlement had fretted it.  It became a dominant political issue.
There was an open sore of a similar character in Upper Silesia;
there was a sore in the Saar Valley; there was the sore of an
enforced detachment from Austria; there were many other bitter
memories and grievances, but this was so intimate, so close to
Berlin, that it obsessed all German life.

Within a dozen years of the signing of the Treaty of Versailles the
Polish Corridor was plainly the most dangerous factor in the
European situation.  It mocked every projection of disarmament.  It
pointed the hypnotized and impotent statescraft of Europe straight
towards a resumption of war.  A fatalistic attitude towards war as
something terrible indeed but inevitable, which had already been
evident among the politicians of Europe before 1914, reappeared and

History had an air of repeating itself.  Nobody made any definite
suggestions about any of these open sores, but there was scarcely a
politician of the period who could not claim to have been very
eloquent on various occasions against war--with, of course, a
skilful avoidance of anything that could be considered specific,
controversial, unpatriotic or likely to wound the susceptibilities
of the Powers immediately concerned.

11.  The Impulse to Abolish War: Why the League of Nations Failed
     to Pacify the World

Before we leave that bleak and futile idealist, Woodrow Wilson,
altogether, we will draw the attention of the student to the
essential factors of his failure.  The defects of his personality
must not blind us to the impossibility of his ambition.  His narrow
egotism, the punitive treatment of the Central Powers and so forth,
merely emphasized a disadvantage that would have been fatal to the
launching of any League of Nations at that time.  There had been an
insufficient mental preparation for a world system to operate.  No
ideology existed to sustain it.  The World-State, the Modern State,
was still only a vaguely apprehended suggestion; it had not been
worked out with any thoroughness and the League was the most hasty
of improvisations.

It needed the life scheming of de Windt and his associates, which
we shall presently describe; it needed a huge development and
application of the science of social psychology, before the
supersession of the chaos of sovereign states by a central control
was even a remote possibility.  Wilson thought he could get
together with a few congenial spirits and write a recipe for human
unity.  He had not the slightest inkling of the gigantic
proportions, the intricacy, intimacy and profundity, of the task
that was opening before him.  He attempted to patch up the outworn
system of his time and pass it off as a new one.  He did not dream
of the monetary reconstruction, the need for a thorough-going
socialism throughout the world, and for a complete revolution in
education, before the peace and security of mankind could be
established.  Yet, narrow and blind as he was, he seems to have
been in advance of the general thought of his age.

This premature and ineffectual League was a hindrance rather than a
help to the achievement of world peace.  It got in the way.  It
prevented people from thinking freely about the essentials of the
problem.  Organizations of well-meaning folk, the British League of
Nations Union, for example, came into existence to support it, and
resisted rather than helped any effectual criticism of its
constitution and working.  They would say that it was "better than
nothing", whereas a false start is very much worse than nothing.
In the post-war decade, the amount of vigorous constructive thought
in the general mind about world politics was extraordinarily small.
It was only when the insufficiency of the League had passed beyond
any possibility of dispute that men began to take up the abandoned
search for world unification again.

A dozen years later the Modern State movement was still only
foreshadowed in sketchy attempts to find a comprehensive set of
general formulæ for liberal progressive effort.  The pacificists,
communists, socialists and every other sort of "ists" who gave a
partial and confused expression to human discontent had still to be
drawn together into understanding and cooperation.  Most of their
energy was wasted in obscure bickerings, mutual suspicion and petty
and partial tentatives.  The middle of the century had been passed
before there was any considerable body of Modern State propaganda
and education on earth.

12.  The Breakdown of "Finance" and Social Morale after Versailles

The unprecedented range and destruction of the World War were, we
have pointed out, largely ascribable to the hypertrophy of the
world's iron and steel industry relatively to the political and
social concepts of the race.  But in the first "post-war" decade
the stresses of other disproportionate developments began to make
themselves manifest at various other weak points in the loosely
linked association of our species.  The war from the economic point
of view had been the convulsive using up of an excess of production
that the race had no other method of distributing and consuming.
But the necessities of the struggle, and particularly its
interference with international trading, which had evoked factories
and finishing processes in many undeveloped regions hitherto
yielding only raw or unfinished materials, had added greatly to the
gross bulk of productive plant throughout the world, and so soon as
the open war-furnaces ceased to burn up the surplus and hold
millions of men out of the labour market, this fact became more and
more oppressively apparent.  The postwar increase in war
preparation, which went on in spite of endless palavering about
disarmament, did not destroy men, nor scrap and destroy material,
in sufficient quantity to relieve the situation.

Moreover, the expansion of productive energy was being accompanied
by a positive contraction of the distributive arrangements which
determined consumption.  The more efficient the output, the fewer
were the wages-earners.  The more stuff there was, the fewer
consumers there were.  The fewer the consumers, the smaller the
trading profits, and the less the gross spending power of the
shareholders and individual entrepreneurs.  So buying dwindled at
both ends of the process and the common investor suffered with the
wages-earner.  This was the "Paradox of Overproduction" which so
troubled the writers and journalists of the third decade of the
twentieth century.

It is easy for the young student to-day to ask "Why did they not
adjust?"  But let him ask himself who there was to adjust.  Our
modern superstructure of applied economic science, the David Lubin
Bureau and the General Directors' Board, with its vast recording
organization, its hundreds of thousands of stations and observers,
directing, adjusting, apportioning and distributing, had not even
begun to exist.  Adjustment was left to blind and ill-estimated
forces.  It was the general interest of mankind to be prosperous,
but it was nobody's particular interest to keep affairs in a frame
of prosperity.  Manifestly a dramatic revision of the liberties of
enterprise was necessary, but the enterprising people who
controlled politics, so far as political life was controlled, were
the very last people to undertake such a revision.

With the hypertrophy of productive activities there had been a
concurrent hypertrophy of banking and financial organization
generally, but it had been a flabby hypertrophy, a result of the
expansion of material production rather than a compensatory and
controlling development.

It is so plain to us to-day that the apportionment of the general
product of the world for enterprise or consumption is a department
of social justice and policy, and can be dealt with only in the
full light of public criticism and upon grounds of claim and need,
that it is difficult for us to understand the twentieth century
attitude to these things.  We should no more dream of leaving the
effectual control in these matters in private profit-seeking hands
than we should leave our law courts or our schools to the private
bidder.  But nothing of the sort was plain in 1935 C.E.  That
lesson had still to be learnt.

The story of banking and money in the early twentieth century has
so much in it verging upon the incredible, that it has become one
of the most attractive and fruitful fields for the student of
historical psychology.  The system had grown up as a tangle of
practice.  It was evolved, not designed.  There was never any
attempt to gauge the justice or the ultimate consequences of any
practice, so long as it worked at the time.  Men tried this and
that, did this and that, and concealed their opinions of what the
results might be.  Reserve was essential in the system.  So little
was the need for publicity in this universal interest understood,
that the most fundamental decisions affecting the common man's
purchasing power and the credit of industrial undertakings were
made in secret, and the restriction and stimulation of trade and
work went on in the profoundest obscurity.  Neither in the ordinary
courses of the schools and universities was there any instruction
in these essential facts.  The right of private enterprise to
privacy was respected in the Churches, the law courts and private
practice alike.  Men found themselves employed or unemployed,
cheated of their savings or better off, they knew not why.  Instead
of the clear knowledge of economic pressures and movements that we
have to-day, strange Mystery Men were dimly visible through a fog
of baffling evasions and mis-statements, manipulating prices and

Prominent among these Mystery Men was a certain Mr. Montagu Norman,
Governor of the Bank of England from 1920 to 1935.  He is among the
least credible figures in all history, and a great incrustation of
legends has accumulated about him.  In truth the only mystery about
him was that he was mysterious.  His portrait shows a slender,
bearded man, dressed more like a successful artist or musician than
the conventional banker of the time.  He was reputed to be shy and,
in the phraseology of the time, "charming", and he excited the
popular imagination by a habit of travelling about under assumed
names and turning up in unexpected places.  Why he did so, nobody
now knows.  Perhaps he did it for the fun of doing it.  He gave
evidence before an enquiry into finance in 1930 (the Macmillan
Committee), and from that and from one or two of his public
speeches that have been preserved, it is plain that he had what we
should now consider an entirely inadequate education for the veiled
activities in which he was engaged.  Of human ecology he betrays no
knowledge, and his ideas of social and economic processes are not
what we should now recognize as adequate general ideas even for an
ordinary citizen.  Indeed his chief qualification for his darkly
responsible post was some practical experience acquired in
association with various private banking firms before he entered
the service of the Bank of England.  This experience was acquired
during what we know now to have been a period of quite accidental
and transitory expansion of human wealth.  Plainly he did not even
bring a blank mind to his task.  He had a mind warped and
prejudiced by gainful banking under abnormal conditions.  Yet for a
time he was regarded as an "expert" of almost magical quality, and
during the convulsions of the post-war period he was able to
dictate or defeat arrangements that enriched or impoverished
millions of people in every country in Europe.

Another big obscure financial force in the war and post-war periods
was the complex of great private banking ganglia, of which Morgan
and Co., with its associated firms, was the most central and most
typical.  This particular firm carried on its business upon a scale
that completely overshadowed many minor governments.  The loans it
made or refused, confirmed or shattered régimes.  Its founder, J.
P. Morgan, a queer combination of Yankee "gentleman" and German
junker, whose innate acquisitiveness overflowed in great
collections of pictures and "art" objects generally, had died
before the outbreak of the war, but a phrase he used in a dispute
with President Roosevelt the First was taken up later and made into
a deadly critical weapon against the whole private banking world.
"Roosevelt", he protested, "wants all of us to have glass pockets!"

A second President Roosevelt was presently to revive that demand.

Nothing could better betray the habit of deep gainful manoeuvrings
than that phrase.  Morgan was never dishonest and always
disingenuous.  That was the rule of his game.  Opaque pockets he
insisted upon, and hidden motives, but also the punctual
performance of a bargain.  His tradition lived after him.  His firm
became an octopus of credit.  The interweaving bargains it made
hung like a shadowy group of spiders' webs about European life.  It
did its work of strangulation by its nature and without malice, as
a spider spins.  No contemporary could apprehend it.  The
particulars of any particular situation could only be unravelled
vaguely by a normal enquirer after many months of study.

Interacting with such mystery systems as these of the banking world
were other dark figures and groups, controlling vast industrial
activities, obsessing and perverting spending power.  There was,
for example, that Mystery Man of Mystery Men, Sir Basil Zaharoff,
the armaments salesman, still the delight of our schoolboy
novelists, and Ivar Kreuger, who created an almost world-wide
system of lucifer match monopolies, lent great sums to governments
and was finally caught forging big parcels of bonds.  He then
staged a suicide in Paris to escape the penalty of fraud.  (We have
to remember that in those days the lucifer matches we now see in
museums were consumed by the billion.  There was no other handy
source of fire, and their manufacture and distribution was on the
scale of a primary industry.)  Kreuger, unlike Morgan, was not a
man of the acquisitive type; he neither hoarded nor collected; he
kept nothing, not even the law, but he built lavishly and gave away
money for scientific research.  (The discovery of Pekin Man, a
memorable incident in early archæology, was, for instance, made
possible by his gifts.)  Morgan forestalled and accumulated;
Kreuger robbed and gave.  When Morgan spent his gains he bought
"Old Masters", manuscripts and suchlike indisputably genuine and
valuable junk; when Kreuger dispersed the moneys that had been
entrusted to him he made the most extraordinary experiments in
decorative art, in electric lighting and fantastic building.  But
each operated unchecked.  So obscure was the financial machinery of
the time that for some months Kreuger was able to pass off as
genuine a package of forged Italian bonds amounting to about half a
million dollars, and to obtain advances upon them from reputable
lenders.  To-day a trick of such a character would be detected,
were it possible, in the course of a single day by the ordinary
checking of the Transactions Bureau.  But nowadays no one would
have any reason for attempting anything of the sort.  The lives of
these Mystery Men and of the various groups of speculators (the
Balkan Gang, e.g.) who manipulated the exchanges of the various
national currencies of Eastern Europe, and of a great number of
other profit-seeking groups and individuals who were thrusting
about amidst the machinery of exchange, are to be found in the
Lives of Mischief (Financial Volumes) taken out of the Dictionary
of Biography.  The very best of them were men who waylaid gain or
sought adventures in a fog.  Most of them were as active and as
blind to the consequences of their activities as moles who
perforate a dyke.

In the files of the financial papers of this period, when the
movements of gold were of vital significance to the prices of
commodities and the credit of everyone in the world, one sees such
headings as "Unknown Buyer Takes Two Millions in Gold" or, less
exactly, "Gold Bought by Unknown Buyer".  Then all the little
manipulators of money would be set peering and spying and guessing
and rigging their business to the possible shift of equilibrium
this dark intimation might portend.

Other Mystery Men, Mystery Men ex officio, were the various
Ministers of Finance, of whom perhaps the British Chancellor of the
Exchequer was most typical.  Every year there was a vast amount of
whispering and hinting, peeping and calculating and going to and
fro, about the National Budget and the readjustment of taxation for
another twelvemonth.  An arithmetical mystery called "balancing the
Budget" had to be performed.  Business would be held up as the
great revelation drew near; gambling operations, insurance
operations, would multiply.  The wife, the family, the intimates
and secretaries of the Man of Destiny, went about the world sealed,
enigmatical, oracular, profoundly important with his reflected
importance.  At last the great day dawned.  The legislature would
assemble in unusual force, excited and curious.  The Witch Doctor,
with his portfolios of Obi, would take his place in the House of
Commons, rise portentously, begin the "Budget Speech".

No Budget Speech was complete without its "surprises".  Could
anything witness more vividly to the chaotic casualness of the
twentieth century?  Anything might be taxed; anything might be
relieved; anyone might shift the weights about.  In the economic
darkness of the time it did not seem to matter.  The marvel is that
the system staggered on for so long.

How amazing, how fantastic, was that condition of affairs!  It is
as if one of the great transatlantic liners of the period had
careered across the ocean with its passenger decks and cabins
brightly lit, its saloons and bars in full swing, while down below,
its essential machinery, manifestly with something going wrong with
it, had no arrangements for illumination at all and was served by
men (some of them masked), working without a foreman or any general
directions, by the light of an occasional match or a treasured but
rather worn-out electric torch, or altogether in the dark, upon the
great cranks and swiftly sliding shafts that beat and circled about

From the very cessation of the fighting in 1918 and onward it was
manifest that this machinery was seriously out of gear.  The
economic history of the time is a story of swerves and fluctuations
of the most alarming kind, each one more disconcerting and
disastrous than its predecessor.  In the decades before the war,
though there were certainly variations in the real value of the
different currencies, they were variations within moderate limits,
and the rise or fall went on through comparatively long periods,
but after the war there commenced a series of movements in exchange
and prices unprecedented throughout the whole period of prosperity.
Currencies rose and towered above others and broke like Atlantic
waves, and people found the good money in their banks changed to
useless paper in a period of a few months.  It became more and
more difficult to carry on foreign trade because of the increasing
uncertainty of payment, and since there was scarcely a manufacturing
industry that had not to obtain some material from abroad, the
entanglement of foreign trade often involved a strangulation of
production at home.  Trade and industry sickened and lost heart more
and more in this disastrous uncertainty; it was like being in an
earthquake, when it seems equally unsafe to stand still or run away;
and the multitudes of unemployed increased continually.  The
economically combatant nations entrenched themselves behind tariffs,
played each other tricks with loans, repudiations, sudden inflations
and deflations, and no power in the world seemed able to bring them
into any concerted action to arrest and stop their common

The opening years of the second third of the twentieth century saw
Homo sapiens in the strangest plight.  The planet had a healthier
and more abundant human population than it had ever carried before,
and it lacked nothing in its available resources to give the whole
of this population full and happy lives.  That was already the
material reality of the position.  But through nothing in the world
but a universal, various muddle-headedness, our species seemed
unable to put out its hand and take the abundance within its reach.
As we turn over the periodicals and literature of the time the
notes of apprehension and distress increase and deepen.  The war
period of 1914-1918 was full of suffering, but also it was full of
excitement; even the dying on the battlefields believed that a
compensatory peace and happiness lay close ahead.  The survivors
were promised "homes fit for heroes."  But the Depression of 1930
and onward was characterized by its inelasticity; it was a phase of
unqualified disappointment and hopelessly baffled protest.  One
lived, as one contemporary writer put it, "in a world bewitched".

The economic consequences of this monetary disorganization followed
hard upon it, but the deeper-lying destruction of social morale and
its effects were manifested less immediately.  The whole world
system heretofore had been sustained by the general good behavior
of common men, by the honesty and punctuality of clerks, workers of
every sort, traders, professional men.  General security depended
upon habitual decent behaviour in the street and on the
countryside.  But the common man behaved well because he had faith
that his pay was a safe, if sometimes a scanty, assurance of a
certain comfort and dignity in his life.  He imagined an implicit
bargain between himself and society that he should be given
employment and security in exchange for his law-abiding
subordination, and that society would keep faith with his savings.
He assumed that the governments would stand by the money they
issued and see that it gave him the satisfactions it promised him.
He was not a good boy for nothing.  Nobody is.  But now in various
terms and phrases all over the world millions of men and women were
asking themselves whether it "paid" to be industrious, skilful and
law-abiding.  The cement of confidence in the social fabric from
1918 onward was more and more plainly decaying and changing to
dust.  The percentage of criminal offences, which had been falling
through all the period of prosperity, rose again.

13.  1933: "Progress" Comes to a Halt

So we bring the history of mankind to that great pause in social
expansion which concluded the first third of the twentieth century.
The year 1933 closed in a phase of dismayed apprehension.  It was
like that chilly stillness, that wordless interval of suspense,
that comes at times before the breaking of a storm.  The wheels of
economic life were turning only reluctantly and uncertainly; the
millions of unemployed accumulated and became more and more plainly
a challenge and a menace.  All over the world the masses were
sinking down through distress and insufficiency to actual famine.
And collectively they were doing nothing effectual in protest or
struggle.  Insurrectionary socialism lurked and muttered in every
great agglomeration.  But insurrection alone could remedy nothing
without constructive ideas, and there was no power and energy yet
behind any such constructive ideas as had appeared.  The merely
repressive forces, whatever their feebleness in the face of
criminality, were still fully capable of restraining popular
insurrection.  They could keep misery stagnant and inoperative.

Everywhere, in everything, there was an ebb of vitality.  A decline
in the public health was becoming perceptible.  A diminishing
resistance to infections and a rise in the infantile death-rate was
already very evident in the vital statistics after 1933.

War was manifestly drawing nearer, in Eastern Asia, in Eastern
Europe; it loitered, it advanced, it halted, and no one displayed
the vigour or capacity needed to avert its intermittent, unhurrying

Still the immense inertias of the old order carried things on.
Under a darkling sky, the majority of people were going about their
business according to use and wont.  The unprofitable industries
still carried on with reduced staffs; the shopkeepers opened their
shops to a dwindling tale of customers; the unemployed queued up at
the Labour Exchanges by force of habit, and some at least got a
job; the landlord's agent no longer collected the rent that was due
but called for an instalment of his arrears; the unfed or ill-fed
children went sniffing to chilly schools to be taught by dispirited
teachers on reduced salaries, but still the schools were not
closed; the bankrupt railways and steamship lines ran diminished
but punctual services; hotels stayed open not to make profits but
to mitigate losses; the road traffic lost something of its newness
and smartness and swiftness, but still it flowed; the crowds in the
streets moved less briskly, but, if anything, these sluggish crowds
were more numerous, and the police, if less alertly vigilant,
maintained order.

There had been a considerable if inadequate building boom after the
Peace of Versailles, but after 1930 new construction fell off more
and more.  Yet some builders found work, necessary repairs were
attended to, burnt-out houses were reconditioned, for example.  In
1935 and 1937 the world was swept by influenza epidemics of unusual
virulence.  The lowered resistance, already noted by the
statisticians, was now made conspicuous by this return towards
mediæval conditions; but the doctors and nurses stuck to their
duties stoutly and the druggists and undertakers, whose affairs had
long since been reorganized on Big Business lines, profited.

Pictures of life in the shadows during this phase of devitalization
are not very abundant, nor do they convey the essential misery into
which a whole generation was born, in which it lived and died.  One
sees the rows of dilapidated houses, the wretched interiors and
shabbily clad men and women standing about.  In these pictures they
seem always to be just standing about.  Descriptive journalism
brings the student nearer to the realities of a life without space,
colour, movement, hope or opportunity.  There were a number of
"enquiries" made, more particularly by the British, American and
French newspapers, and the tale they tell is always a tale of
wheels slowing down to a stoppage, of factory gates being closed,
of smokeless chimneys and rusting rails.  Here is a vivid
contemporary vignette, to show how things were with millions of
human beings during this strange phase of human experience.  It is
from the pen of H. M. Tomlinson (1873-1969) one of the best of
English descriptive writers.

"I chanced upon a little town above Cardiff last week.  It was by
pure chance; I had never before heard of the place.  It is typical
of these valleys, so never mind its name.  It could have many
names.  Its population is, or was, about 6,000.  Its people have
faced trouble before--less than twenty years ago over 300 of its
men perished in a mine explosion.  We won't say the town got over
that, for I spoke to those for whom the calamity is an abiding
horror.  It was a terrific defeat for them in the war upon Nature,
but survivors returned to the struggle and said no more about it.

"When first I saw the town from a distance, with the bleak, bare
uplands about it, I was reminded of the towns, once familiar, that
were too near the battleline in France.  It was midday, and sunny,
yet this colliery town was silent and so still that it seemed under
a spell.

"As a fact it IS under a spell.  It is, in a way, dead.  But its
people cling to the empty shell of it.  Where else can they go?

"At first sight no people could have been there.  Buildings in the
foreground were in ruins.  The gaunt pit-head gearing evidently had
not moved for an age.  The gaps in the blackened walls of the
power-house suggested a home of bats and owls.

"The first man I met when I reached the end of its main street and
saw then that the shops were not only closed, but abandoned, was
standing on the kerb, a man in the middle years, shrewd, but
haggard, his clothes brushed till they were threadbare.

"'What's the matter with this town?' I asked.

"'On the dole.'

"'Are you out too?'

"'Of course I'm out.'

"'How long?'

"He was silent.  He held up five fingers.



"'Are all the men here the same?'

"'Most of them.  And won't go back.'

"He led me up a mound of refuse, where a goat was eating paper, and
we had a near view of the colliery itself.  'That's the reason we
won't go down again,' he said.  'How would you work it?'

"Whether by design or rust a steel footbridge had fallen across the
wide railway track which went to the pit-head.  A deflected stream
guttered down between the metals, which were overgrown with grass
and stagnant marsh stuff.  The outbuildings were a huddle of
dilapidations.  It looked haunted.  'Some men I knew,' muttered my
guide, 'are still down there.  There they'll stop.  They've been
there nineteen years now.  Would you call them lucky?'

"Two thousand five hundred men came out of the principal colliery
five years ago.  That is why the shops are shut, long rows of them
with whitewashed windows and doorways filled with dust and straws.
The woodwork of many houses has been taken for firewood.  Even the
Cooperative store is shut, as well as the pawnshop.  Thrift and
thriftlessness mean the same thing in this town, where I noticed
that even Nonconformist chapels, with broken windows, had been left
to the rats and birds.

"Worse than the dismal shops and broken buildings are the groups of
shabby men, all neat and tidy, standing listless and silent at the
street corners, waiting.

"Waiting for what?  Nothing.  There is nothing to come. . . .

"They are doomed, these parents, to watch a generation grow up with
thin bones and a shadow on its mind.  Their children learn the
signs of the slow death about them when they should be at play;
children that have no childhood.

"Their homes are in a graveyard of human aspiration. . . ."

The Press and literature of that period make curious reading.  It
varied between a bleak insincere optimism and hopeless desperation.
An undignified viciousness and a jeering humour invaded popular art
and literature; "strong" in manner and in flavour rather than in
any grasp upon the realities of contemporary life.  There was also
an abundant production and consumption of reassuring and
deliberately "cheerful" books, a movement towards religious
mysticism and other-worldliness and a marked tendency towards
repressive puritanism.  Excesses of libertinism provoke censorious
and superstitious suppression; the two things are correlated
aspects of a decline in human dignity.  In the face of its
financial and political perplexities mankind was becoming

All neurasthenia has apparently unaccountable elements.  To us to-
day, it seems incredible that the way out of all these distresses
was not plainly seen and boldly taken.  There was a blindness and
an effortlessness that still exercise the mind of the social
psychologist.  The way was so plain that it was visible, it was
indicated by hundreds of intelligent and detached observers as
early as the thirties of the twentieth century.  Maxwell Brown, in
his study of the Modern State idea, has two supplementary volumes
of citations to this effect.  Such phrases, for example, as
"Cosmopolis, Inflation and Public Employment" (from a British
provincial newspaper article in 1932) do state, in general terms at
any rate, the line of escape for the race.  These are crude, ill-
defined terms, but manifestly they have in them the shape of the
ultimate reconstruction.  "Cosmopolis" foreshadows our rational
world controls, "Inflation" was a plain indication of our present
complete restraint upon the aggravation of debts and fluctuations
of price level; "Public Employment" was our ancestors' conception
of socialist enterprise.

But before the exodus to peace and freedom could be achieved, such
scattered flashes of understanding had to ignite a steadier
illumination.  The conception of revolutionary world reconstruction
had to spread from the few to the many, spread to them not merely
as an idea and as a suggestion, but in such force as to saturate
their minds and determine their lives.  Then, and then only, could
the necessary will-power be marshalled and directed to the
effective reorganization of earthly affairs.

A struggle for sanity had to take place in the racial brain, a
great casting-out of false assumptions, conventional distortions,
hitherto uncriticized maxims and impossible "rights," a great
clearing-up of ideas about moral, material and biological
relationships; it was a struggle that, as we shall see, involved
the passing of three generations.  To an analysis of the factors
and decisive forces in this struggle our history must next address

Something between eight and ten thousand million human lives in all
were lived out during the Age of Frustration.  Compared with the
average lives of to-day, they were shorter and far less healthy;
nearly all of them had long phases of such infection, maladjustment
and enfeeblement as are now almost outside man's experience.  The
great majority of them were passed laboriously in squalid or dingy
surroundings, in huts, hovels, cottages, tenements and cellars
almost as dismal as the ancestral cave and nearly as insanitary.  A
minority who could command the services of "domestics" lived in
relative comfort and even with a certain freedom and luxury, at an
enormous cost to the rest.  This prosperous minority dwindled after
1931.  It had vanished in Russia after 1917.

There was a diminishing sense of personal security in the world, an
enervating fear and uncertainty about the morrow, through the
ensuing years.  There was what we find now an almost incredible
amount of mutual distrust, suspicion, irritation and quarrelling.
Only a small proportion of the world's population lived to be
peacefully and gracefully old in this phase of deterioration.
Disease or a violent death became the common end again.  One of the
first general histories that was ever written was called The
Martyrdom of Man (Winwood Reade, 1871).  In the Age of Frustration
it seemed to many that that martyrdom was mounting to a final
hopeless agony.

Yet in the welter there were also laughter, sympathy, helpfulness
and courage.  Those fretted and painful lives interwove with
threads of great brightness.  Out of that medley of human
distresses, out of the brains of men stressed out of indolence and
complacency by the gathering darkness and suffering about them,
there came first the hope, then the broad plan and the effort, and
at last the achievement of that fruitful order, gathering beauty
and happy assurance, in which we live to-day.



1.  The London Conference: the Crowning Failure of the Old
    Governments; The Spread of Dictatorships and Fascisms.

2.  The Sloughing of the Old Educational Tradition.

3.  Disintegration and Crystallization in the Social Magma.  The
    Gangster and Militant Political Organizations.

4.  Changes in War Practice after the World War.

5.  The Fading Vision of a World Pax: Japan Reverts to Warfare.

6.  The Western Grip on Asia Relaxes.

7.  The Modern State and Germany.

8.  A Note on Hate and Cruelty.

9.  The Last War Cyclone, 1940-50.

10.  The Raid of the Germs.

11.  Europe in 1960.

12.  America in Liquidation.

1.  The London Conference: the Crowning Failure of the Old
    Governments; The Spread of Dictatorships and Fascisms

In the preceding chapters we have explained how the old order of
the nineteenth century, the Capitalist System as it was called,
came to disaster in the second and third decades of the twentieth
century because of the disproportionate development of its
industrial production, the unsoundness and vulnerability of its
monetary nexus, and its political inadaptability.  It had no
inherent power of recovery, and there was no idea of a new order,
sufficiently developed, to replace it.  Necessarily therefore the
tale of disaster went on.

The only mechanisms in existence for collective action, and that
only in disconnected spurts, were the various sovereign
governments.  Most of these at the outset of the war were either
parliamentary monarchies or parliamentary republics.  The
parliaments were elected upon a very preposterous system by the
bulk or all of the population.  The age was called the Age of
Democracy.  Democracy did not mean then what it means now, an equal
opportunity for every human being according to his ability and the
faculty to which he belongs, to serve and have a voice in
collective affairs.  Nor did it mean the fraternal equality of a
small community.  It expressed a political fiction of a very
extraordinary kind: that every subject of the contemporary state
was equally capable of making whatever collective decisions had to
be made.

The great republics of a remoter antiquity, the Carthaginian,
the Athenian, the Roman, for example, were all essentially
aristocratic.  Democratic republics, that is to say republics in
which every man was supposed to share equally in the government, in
the rare instances when they occurred at all before the end of the
eighteenth century, were, like, Uri, Unterwalden or Andorra, small
and poor and perched in inaccessible places.  The world at large
knew nothing of them.  Their affairs were equally small and well
within the scope of a common citizen's understanding.

Then with the Era of European Predominance came a turning-point in
human affairs, that outbreak of books and discussion in the
fifteenth century, a period of great animation and confusion when
the destructive criticism of faiths and loyalties got loose.  The
release of new economic forces strained the old feudal order to
breaking.  Exploration and merchandising, new financial conditions,
industrial development, created new types of men, uncertain of
their powers, needing and demanding free play.  They did not know
clearly what they wanted; they did not know clearly how they
differed from the men of the old order, nor had they any conception
that such a structural reform of human relations as Plato had
already pictured nearly two thousand years before them.  His plan
for a devoted and trained order of rulers was unknown to them,
though More had tried to revive it.  They were simply responding to
the facts about them.  They chafed under an hereditary aristocracy,
and they distrusted an absolute king.

Essentially the movement that evolved the phraseology of
nineteenth-century democracy was a revolt against "birth" and
"privilege", against the monopolization of direction and advantages
by restricted and generally hereditary classes in accordance with
definitely established dogmas.  Because this revolt was the revolt
of a very miscellaneous number of energetic and resentful
individuals not definitely organized, mentally or socially, it came
about that at a quite early stage of the new movement it took the
form of an assertion of the equal political rights of all men.

It was not that these sixteenth and seventeenth-century Radicals
were for government by the general mass; it was that they were
antagonistic to established classes and rulers.  They constituted a
vigorous insurgent minority rousing, so far as it could, and
trailing after it the apathetic majority of submissive mankind.
That was always the character of these democratic movements of the
Age of European Predominance.  The multitude was supposed to be
demanding and deciding--and all the time it was being pushed or
led.  The individuality of the popular "leaders" of those centuries
stands out far more vividly than the kings and ecclesiastics of the
period.  Only one or two such hereditary monarchs as William
Prince of Orange, or Frederick the Great of Prussia, figure as
conspicuously on the record as--to cite a miscellany of new types--
Cromwell, Voltaire, Mirabeau, Washington, Gladstone, Robespierre,
Bonaparte or Marx.

Later on (in England, America, Scandinavia, Germany, Finland, e.g.)
in just the same way a minority of dissatisfied and aggressive
women struggling for a rôle in affairs inflicted the vote upon the
indifferent majority of women.  But their achievement ended with
that.  Outside that sexual vindication, women at that time had
little to contribute to the solution of the world's problems, and
as a matter of fact they contributed nothing.

Research in social psychology is still only beginning to unravel
the obscure processes by which faith in "democracy" became for the
better part of a century the ruling cant of practically all America
and the greater part of Europe.  There was often a profound
internal disingenuousness even in those who were known as
"Thinkers" in that age.  They were afraid in their hearts of stark
realities; they tried instinctively to adapt even their heresies to
what seemed to them invincibly established prejudices.  Their
primary conception of democracy was of some far-away simple little
republic of stout upstanding men, all similar, all practically
equal in fortune and power, managing the affairs of the canton in a
folk-meeting, by frank speech and acclamation.  All the old-world
democracies, up to and including the Republic of Rome, were ruled,
in theory at least, by such meetings of all the citizens.  The
people, it was imagined, watched, listened, spoke, and wisdom

The extension of this ideal to the large communities of the new
world that was replacing the feudal order, involved such manifest
difficulties and even such absurdities that mysticism was
inevitable if the people was still to be supposed the sovereign of
the community.  But there was so strong and widespread a dread that
if this supposition was not maintained privilege, restriction,
tyranny would come back that the mystical interpretation was boldly
adopted.  At any cost those old inequalities must not return, said
the adventurers of the dawning capitalist age, and, flying from one
subjugation, they hurried on to another.

They found the doctrine of man's natural virtue as expounded by
Rousseau extraordinarily helpful and effective.  The common man,
when he is not beguiled by Priest or King, is always right.  The
Common People became therefore a mystical sympathetic being,
essentially a God, whose altar was the hustings and whose oracle
the ballot box.  A little slow and lumpish was this God of the Age
of European Predominance, but, though his mills ground slowly, men
were assured that they ground with ultimate exactitude.  And
meanwhile business could be carried on.  You could fool some of the
people all the time and all the people some of the time, said
Abraham Lincoln, but you could not fool all the people all the
time.  Yet for such crucial purposes as bringing about a war or
exploiting an economic situation, this was manifestly a quite
disastrous degree of foolability.

And the situation naturally evolved a Press of the very highest
fooling capacity.

This belatedly inevitable Divinity proved now to be altogether too
slow-witted for the urgent political and economic riddles, with
ruin and death at hand, which pressed upon our race as the
twentieth century unfolded.  The experience of the futile
Disarmament and Economic Conferences of 1932 and 1933, the massive
resistance in every national legislature to any but the most narrow
egotism in foreign policy, the inability of the world as a whole to
establish any unanimity of action in face of swift economic
collapse, revealed the final bankruptcy of Parliamentary Democracy.

The inability of the world's nominal rulers to shake off their
lifelong habit of speaking to, or at, a vaguely conceived crowd of
prejudiced voters, and their invincible repugnance from clear
statement, frustrated every effort towards realism.  They recoiled
from any suggestion of definitive or novel action on the plea
that their function was purely representative.  Behind them all
the reader feels the sprawling uneasy presence of that poor
invertebrate mass deity of theirs, the Voter, easily roused to
panic and frantic action against novel, bold or radical measures,
very amenable to patriotic claptrap, very easily scared and
maddened into war, and just as easily baffled to distrust and
impotence by delays, side issues, and attacks on the personalities
of decisive people he might otherwise have trusted.  An entirely
irresponsible Press, mercenary or partisan, played upon his baser
emotions, which were so easy to play upon, and made no appeal
whatever to his intelligence or his conscience.

The Voter, the Mass, which was neither educated nor led, the Voter
without any sincere organizations of leadership anywhere, is the
basal explanation of the impotence of those culminating
conferences.  The World Economic Conference in London was by far
the more significant of the two.  Armament and disarmament are
symptoms and superficial, but economic life is fundamental.  This
London gathering has been made the subject of a thousand studies by
our social psychologists.  Many of its contradictions still perplex
us profoundly.  The men who assembled had just as good brains as
anyone to-day, and, as an exhaustive analysis by Moreton Canby of
the various projects advanced at the Conference proves, they had a
substantial understanding of the needs of the world situation, yet
collectively, and because of their haunting paralysing sense of the
Mass and Press behind them and of their incalculable impulses and
resentments, they achieved an effect of fatuity far beyond the
pompous blunderings of Versailles.

Primarily the London Conference was a belated effort to repair the
vast omissions of that earlier gathering, to supplement the well-
meaning political patchwork of Wilson by some readjustment of the
monetary and economic dislocations he had been too limited to
foresee or too weak to avoid.  Wraithlike conceptions of some vague
monetary League of Nations at Bâle, and some Tariff Council and
Assembly, drifted through the mists of the opening meeting.  And
History, with its disposition to inexact repetition made one of the
principal figures of this second world assembly also a President of
the United States, belonging also to the Democratic Party and
according to the ritual of that Party invoking the name of
Jefferson as the Communists invoked the name of Marx or the Moslim,
Mahomet.  This was Roosevelt II.  He leaves a less vivid impression
than his predecessor because he did not impend for so long upon the
European scene.  But for some months at least before and after his
election as American President and the holding of the London
Conference there was again a whispering hope in the world that a
real "Man" had arisen, who would see simply and clearly, who would
speak plainly to all mankind and liberate the world from the dire
obsessions and ineptitudes under which it suffered and to which it
seemed magically enslaved.  But the one thing he failed to do was
to speak plainly.

Drawing wisdom from Wilson's personal failure, he did not come to
London and expose himself and his conversation to too close a
scrutiny.  He preferred to deal with the fluctuating crises in
London from his yacht, Amberjack II, in Nantucket Harbour, through
intermittent messages and through more or less completely
authorized intermediaries.  Amberjack II has become almost as
significant a ship in the history of human affairs as the Ford
Peace Ship.  Significant equally in its intentions and in its

Everywhere as the Conference drew near men were enquiring about
this possible new leader for them.  "Is this at last the Messiah we
seek, or shall we look for another?"  Every bookshop in Europe
proffered his newly published book of utterances, Looking Forward,
to gauge what manner of mind they had to deal with.  It proved
rather disconcerting reading for their anxious minds.  Plainly the
man was firm, honest and amiable, as the frontispiece portrait with
its clear frank eyes and large resolute face showed, but the text
of the book was a politician's text, saturated indeed with good
will, seasoned with much vague modernity, but vague and wanting in
intellectual grip.  "He's good," they said, "but is this good

Nevertheless hope fought a stout fight.  There was no other
personality visible who even promised to exorcize the spell that
lay upon the economic life of the race.  It was Roosevelt's
Conference or nothing.  And in spite of that disappointing book
there remained some sound reasons for hope.  In particular the
President, it was asserted, had a "Brain Trust".  A number of
indisputably able and modern-minded men were his associates, such
men as Professors Tugwell, Moley and Dickinson, men whose later
work played a significant part in that reconstruction of legal and
political method which was America's particular contribution to
Modern State ideas.  This "last hope of mankind", it was credibly
reported, called these intimates by their Christian names and they
called him "Guv'nor."  He was said to have the modesty and
greatness to defer to their studied and matured opinions.
Observers, still hopeful, felt that if he listened to these
advisors things might not go so badly after all.  He was at any
rate one point better than the European politicians and heads of
States who listened only to bankers and big-business men.

But was he listening?  Did he grasp the threefold nature of the
problem in hand?  He understood, it seemed, the need for monetary
inflation to reduce the burthen of debt and over-capitalization; he
was apparently alive to the need for a progressive expansion of
public employment; and so far he was sound.  Unless, which is not
quite clear, he wavered between "public" and "publicly assisted",
which was quite another matter.  But was he sound upon the
necessity that these measures should be world-wide or practically
world-wide?  He made some unexpected changes of attitude in these
respects.  Were these changes inconstancies or were they tactical
manoeuvres veiling a profoundly consistent and resolute purpose?
Was it wise to be tactical when all the world was in need of plain
speech and simple directive ideas?  His treatment took on a
disconcertingly various quality.  He listened, it seemed, to his
advisors; but was he not also listening to everybody?  He was
flirting with bimetallism.  No medicine, it seemed, was to be

The Conference opened with a stout determination to be brilliant
and eventful; the hotels were full, the streets beflagged, the
programme of entertainments was admirable, and even the English
weather seemed to make an effort.  The opening addresses by the
King of England and his Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald make very
curious reading to-day.  They express an acute recognition of the
crucial condition of human affairs.  They state in so many words
that the failure of the Conference will precipitate world disaster.
They insist upon the necessity for world cooperation, for monetary
simplification and a resumption of employment; and in all that we
admit they had the truth of the matter.  But they make not the
faintest intimation of how these desirable ends are to be obtained.
They made gestures that are incomprehensible to us unless they had
an inkling of the primary elements of the situation.  And then
immediately they turned away to other things.  That mixture of
resolve and failure to attack is what perplexes us most.  If they
saw the main essentials of the situation they certainly did not see
them as a connected whole; they did not see any line of world
action before them.

Cordell Hull, the chief of the United States delegation, was
equally large and fine.  The grave and splendid words--shot with
piety in the best American tradition--that he inscribed upon the
roll of history were as follows:  "Selfishness must be banished.
If--which God forbid!--any nation should wreck this Conference,
with the notion that its local interests might profit, that nation
would merit the execration of mankind."

Again Daladier, the French Prime Minister, opened with extremely
broad and sane admissions.  He insisted strongly on a necessity
which the two opening English speeches had minimized, the
necessity, the urgent necessity, for a progressive development of
great public works throughout the world to absorb the unemployed
and restore consumption.  The Americans in the second week seemed
to be coming in line with that.  But after this much of lucidity
the Conference fell away to minor issues.  Apparently it could not
keep at so high a level of reality.  The pressure of the Mass and
the Press behind each delegate began to tell upon him.  The
national representatives began to insist with increasing
explicitness that national interests must not be sacrificed to the
general good, and in a little time it became doubtful if there
could be such a thing as the general good.  The World Economic
Conference became by imperceptible transitions a World Economic
Conflict just as the League of Nations had become a diplomatic
bargain mart.  All the fine preluding of the first séances withered
to fruitlessness because the mind of the world had still to realize
the immense moral and educational effort demanded by those triple
conditions that were dawning upon its apprehension, and because
it was still unwilling to accept the immense political pooling
they indicated.  The amount of self-abnegation involved was
an insurmountable psychological barrier in the way of the
representatives present.  It would have meant a sacrifice of the
very conditions that had made them.  How could men appointed as
national representatives accept a pooling of national interests?
They were indeed fully prepared to revolutionize the world
situation and change gathering misery to hope, plenty and order,
but only on the impossible condition that they were not to change
themselves and that nothing essential to their importance changed.
The leading ideas of the Conference were cloudily true, but the
disintegrative forces of personal, party and national egotism were
too strong for them.

It is a very curious thing that the representatives of Soviet
Russia did nothing to enlighten the obscurity of the world riddle.
It is still argued by many writers that the Bolshevik régime was
the direct precursor of our Modern World-State as it exists to-day.
But there was no direct continuity.  The Modern State arose indeed
out of the same social imperatives and the same constructive
impulses that begot Marxism and Leninism, but as an independent,
maturer, and sounder revolutionary conception.  The Soviet system
certainly anticipated many of the features of our present order in
its profession of internationalism, in its very real socialism, and
particularly in the presence of a devoted controlling organization,
the Communist Party, which foreshadowed our Modern State
Fellowship.  But there was always a wide divergence in Russia
between theory and practice, and Litvinoff, who spoke on behalf of
that first great experiment in planning, was too preoccupied with
various particular points at issue between his country and the
western world, trading embargoes and difficulties of credit, for
example, to use the occasion as he might have done, for a world-
wide appeal.  He did nothing to apply the guiding principles of
Communism to the world situation.  Here was a supreme need for
planning, but he said nothing for a Five Year or Ten Year Plan for
all the world.  Here was a situation asking plainly for collective
employment, and he did not even press the inevitability of world-
socialism.  Apparently he had forgotten the world considered as a
whole as completely as any of the capitalist delegates.  He was
thinking of Russia versus the other States of the world as simply
as if he were an ordinary capitalist patriot.

The claims of the other delegations were even more shortsighted and
uninspired.  Since there was a time-limit set to their speeches,
they compressed their assertions of general humanitarian
benevolence to a phrase or so and then came to business.  Only
Senator Connolly, from the Irish Free State, protested against the
blinkered outlooks of his fellow speakers and pleaded for a
consideration of "every possible theory, however unorthodox."  But
his own speech propounded no substantial constructive ideas.  He
was too obsessed by an embargo that England had put upon Irish
exports, and to that he settled down. . . .

The whole idea of the Modern World-State, Moreton Canby insists, is
to be traced, albeit in a warped and sterilized form, alike in the
expressed idea-systems of the Americans, the British, the French
and the Russians at the Conference.  In the American statements it
is wrapped about and hidden by individualist phrases and
precautions, in the British it is overlaid by imperialist
assumptions, in the Russian it is made unpalatable by the false
psychology and harsh jargon of Marxism.  In the first the business
man refuses to change and get out of the way, in the second the
imperialist administrator, and in the third the doctrinaire party
man.  Athwart every assertion of general principles drive the misty
emotions of patriotism, party and personal association.  Yet for
all that it is indisputable that the Modern World-State was
definitely adumbrated at London in 1933.  Like a ghost out of the
future its presence was felt by nearly everyone, though the worst
phases of the Age of Frustration had still to come, though
generations of suffering had still to lapse, before it could appear
as the living reality of human political life.

The ghost, says Canby, did not materialise because there was no
material.  Every large country in the world was feeling its way
towards the essentials of a permanently progressive world-state
but none was yet within reach even of its partial and local
realisation.  Roosevelt II and his eleventh hour effort to
reconstruct America, he finds particularly interesting.  The
President was clearly aware of the need to relieve debt by
inflation, but he was unable to check the dissipation of the
liberated energy in speculation.  He was dealing with men, trained
and saturated in the tradition of poker, to whom a solemn cunning
had become a second nature, and he was asking them (with occasional
fierce threats) to display an open-faced helpfulness.  He had no
proper civil service available to control large public works; it
was impossible to change the American technicians at one blow from
quasi-financial operators to a candid, devoted public salariat.  So
he tried to induce profiteers to forego profits and organise their
industries on altruistic lines by dire threats of socialisation
which he had no managing class to enforce.  And he was as ignorant
of British or European mentality and as little able to get to an
understanding with it as Wilson had been before him.  It was a
mutual misunderstanding, but his manners were self-righteous and
provocative.  He began to scold long before the Conference was
over.  By 1935 everyone was pointing to a sort of contrasted
parallelism between America and Russia.  Each was manifestly
struggling towards a more scientifically organised state, and each
was finding the same difficulty in reconciling productive
efficiency in the general interest with primarily political
control.  Technician and politician had still to be assimilated one
to the other.  Each great dictatorship was at war with the
speculator and the profiteer.  Each professed a faint hope of
cosmopolitan cooperation and then concentrated practically and
urgently upon the establishment of an internal prosperity.  But
they started towards that common objective from opposite poles of
productive efficiency and social assumption.  Roosevelt started
from the standpoint of democratic individualism and Stalin from
that of Marxist communism.  The British system and the other
intermediate countries of the world struggled to be conservative in
the chaos of financial collapse.  No solvent had yet been devised
to synthesise the good will in the world.

The London Conference rose to no such dramatic climax as the
signing of the Peace Treaty at Versailles.  It rose to nothing.  It
began at its highest point and steadily declined.  If Versailles
produced a monster, London produced nothing at all.  Never did so
valiant a beginning peter out so completely.

There are abundant intimations in the Press of the time (see
Habwright's The Sense of Catastrophe in the Nineteen Thirties, a
summary of quotations in the Historical Documents Series 173,192)
of a realization that the political and economic morale of that age
was played out, and that almost any casual selection of men would
have been at least as adequate as this gathering of old-world
political personages to face the vast impending disasters before
our race.  For at any rate these men had already been tried and
tested and found wanting.  Mr. Ramsay MacDonald indeed, the British
premier, the fine flower and summary of professional politics,
rolled his r's and his eyes over the Conference and seemed still to
be hoping that some favourable accident out of the void might save
him and his like from the damning dissection of history.  For a
time, in the opening glow of the assembly, with the clicking
photographers recording every studied gesture, with the attentive
microphones spreading out and pickling for ever his fine voice and
his rich accent, with bustling secretaries in sedulous attendance,
with the well-trained gravity of the delegates and particularly the
well-matured high seriousness of those adepts in public appearance,
the Americans, to sustain him, this last sublimation of democratic
statesmanship may really have believed that some kind of favourable
incantation was in progress under his direction.  He must have felt
that or he could not have remained there talking.  Incantations had
made him.  By the sheer use of voice and gesture he had clambered
from extreme obscurity to world prominence.  If he did not believe
in incantation there was nothing left for him to believe in.  He
must have clung to that persuasion to the end.  But if that was his
state of mind at the time, it could hardly have survived the
comments and criticisms of the next few months.  Surely then he had
some sleepless nights in which even his private incantations

The World Economic Conference lost its brilliance in a week or so.
The City, which had been so flushed with hope that for a time its
price lists, all pluses, looked like war-time cemeteries, relapsed
into depression.  The World Slump did not wait for the Conference
to disperse before it resumed.  At the outset London had been all
blown up and distended by bright anticipations, so that it was like
one of those little squeaking bladders children play with, and like
one of those bladders, so soon as the blowing ceased, it shrank and
shrivelled and ended in a dying wail of despair.

As Habwright puts it, by July 1933 intelligent men and women
everywhere were saying two things.  Of the assembled rulers and
delegates they were saying:  "These people can do nothing for us.
They do worse than nothing.  They intensify the disaster."  And in
the second place it was demanded with a sort of astonishment:  "Why
have historians, sociologists and economists nothing to tell us
now?  There may indeed be some excuse for the failure of
politicians under democratic conditions.  But have our universities
been doing nothing about it?  Is there indeed no science of these
things?  Is there no knowledge?  Has history learnt nothing of
causes, and is there no analysis of the social processes that are
destroying us?"

To which the professors, greatly preoccupied at that particular
date in marking honours papers in history and social and political
science, made no audible reply.

Before the end of the thirties it was plain to all the world that a
world-wide social catastrophe was now inevitably in progress, that
the sanest thing left for intelligent men to do was to set about
upon some sort of Noah's Ark to salvage whatever was salvageable of
civilization, so that there should be a new beginning after the
rising deluge of misfortune had spent itself.  A few prescient
spirits had been saying as much for some years, but now this idea
of salvage spread like an epidemic.  It prepared the way for the
Modern State Movement on which our present order rests.  At the
time, however, the general pessimism was little mitigated by any
real hope of recovery.  One writer, quoted by Habwright, compared
man to a domesticated ape, "which has had the intelligence and
ability to drag its straw mattress up to the fire when it is cold,
but has had neither the wit nor the foresight to escape the
consequent blaze".  Habwright's brief summary of the financial
operations that went on as the sense of catastrophe grew justifies
that grim image very completely.

The conviction that Parliamentary Democracy had come to an end
spread everywhere in that decade.  Already in the period between
the vacillation in international affairs after Versailles and the
warfare of the Forties, men had been going about discussing and
scheming and plotting for some form of government that should be at
least decisive.  And now their efforts took on a new urgency.
There was a world-wide hysteria to change governments and

At its first onset this craving for decisiveness had produced some
extremely crude results.  An epidemic of tawdry "dictatorships" had
run over Europe from Poland to Spain immediately after the war.
For the most part these adventures followed the pattern of the
pronunciamentos of the small South American republics, and were too
incidental and inconsequent for the student of general history to
be troubled about them now.  But there followed a world-wide
development of directive or would-be directive political
associations which foreshadowed very plainly the organization of
the Modern State Fellowship upon which our present world order

The Fascist dictatorship of Mussolini in Italy had something in it
of a more enduring type than most of the other supersessions of
parliamentary methods.  It rose not as a personal usurpation but as
the expression of an organization with a purpose and a sort of
doctrine of its own.  The intellectual content of Fascism was
limited, nationalist and romantic; its methods, especially in its
opening phase, were violent and dreadful; but at least it insisted
upon discipline and public service for its members.  It appeared as
a counter movement to a chaotic labour communism, but its support
of the still-surviving monarchy and the Church was qualified by a
considerable boldness in handling education and private property
for the public benefit.  Fascism indeed was not an altogether bad
thing; it was a bad good thing; and Mussolini has left his mark on

In Russia something still more thorough and broader came into
operation after 1917.  This was the Communist Party.  It was the
invention of Lenin; he continued to modify and adapt its
organization and doctrine until his untimely death in 1924.  While
he lived Russia's experiment really seemed to be leading the world
in its flight towards a new order from the futile negations and
paralysis of Parliamentary government.  It is still profoundly
interesting to note the modernity of many aspects of the early
Bolshevik régime.

This modernity achieved under the stress of urgent necessities and
Lenin's guidance was attained in spite of many grave difficulties
created by the Marxist tradition.  Marx, who was a man of what the
psychologists of the middle twenty-first century used to call
"blinkered originality", never saw through the democratic
sentimentalities of the period in which he lived.  There had been a
tendency to exclude the privileged classes from the True Democracy
of Common Men even at the dawn of the modern democratic idea, and
he and his followers intensified and stereotyped this tendency in
their own particular version of deified democracy, the Proletariat.
The Proletariat was just Pure Masses, and mystical beyond measure.

But at the outset the actual Russian revolution was under the
control of the intensely practical and intensely middle-class
Lenin, and he took care that the great social reconstruction he had
in mind was equally secured against the risk of paralysis through
mass inertia and the risk of overthrow through mass panic.  His
ostensibly "democratic" government of Soviets, the Soviet pyramid,
was built up on a hierarchic scheme that brought the administration
face to face only with seasoned representatives who had been
filtered through an ascendant series of bodies.  Moreover, he
established a very complete control of education and the Press, to
keep the thought of the nominally sovereign masses upon the right
lines.  And to animate and control the whole machine he had his
invention of the Communist Party.

This Communist Party, like the Italian Fascisti, owes its general
conception to that germinal idea of the Modern State, the Guardians
in Plato's Republic.  For if anyone is to be called the Father of
the Modern State it is Plato.  The Members of the Communist Party
were extremely like those Guardians.  As early as 1900 critics of
democratic institutions were discussing the possibility of creating
a cult primarily devoted to social and political service, self-
appointed, self-trained and self-disciplined.  The English-speaking
Socialist movement was debating projects of that kind in 1909-10
(see Fabian News in Historical Documents for those years), but it
needed the dangers and stresses of the postwar European situation
to produce types of workers and young people sufficiently detached,
desperate and numerous, to unite effectively into a permanent
revolutionary control.

From its beginnings the Communist Party, though it was not divided
into "faculties" and remained political rather than technical in
spirit, resembled our own Modern State Fellowship in its insistence
upon continuous learning and training throughout life, upon free
criticism within the limits of the party, upon accessibility (under
due limitations) to all who wished to serve in it, and upon the
right to resignation from its privileges and severities of all who
wished to return to comparative irresponsibility.  But the
conditions which created the Russian Communist Party made it
inevitably Marxist, and even after a thorough Leninization,
Communism, that characteristic final product of middle-nineteenth-
century radicalism, still retained many of its old sentimentalities,
reverting indeed more and more towards them after Lenin's death and
the rule of the devoted but unoriginal, suspicious and overbearing

There was a heavy load of democratic and equalitarian cant upon the
back of the Russian system, just as there was a burthen of
patriotic and religious cant upon the Italian Fascist.  Even the
United States Constitution did not profess democratic equality and
insist upon the inspired wisdom of the untutored more obstinately
than the new Russian régime.  Although hardly any of the ruling
group of Russians were of peasant or working-class origin--there
were far more politicians from that social level in the public life
of Western Europe and America--there was a universal pretence of
commonness about them all.  They spat, they went unshaved and
collarless.  They pretended to be indifferent to bourgeois comfort.
It was ordained that at the phrase "Class-War" every knee should
bow.  When the Communist leaders quarrelled among themselves,
"bourgeois" or "petty bourgeois" was the favourite term of abuse,
none the less deadly because it was almost invariably true.  Long
years were to pass before any movement whatever in the direction of
the Modern State System was quite free from this heritage of cant.

One unfortunate aspect of this entanglement of the new experiment
in Russia with the social envies and hatreds of the old order was
its inability to assimilate competent technicians, organizers and
educators into its direction.  In its attempt to modernize, it
refused the assistance of just the most characteristically modern
types in the community.  But since these types had a special
education and knew things not generally known, it was difficult to
accord them proletarian standing.  In Russia therefore, as in
America, the politician with his eloquence and his necessary and
habitual disingenuousness still intervened and obstructed, if he
did not actually bar, the way to a scientific development of a new
economic and social order.

Manifestly Stalin learnt much from his difficulties with the Five
Year Plan of the evil of subordinating technical to political
ability, and a speech of his upon the Old and New Technical
Intelligentzia made in June 1931 (Historical Documents Series,
Stalinism, XM 327,705) is a very frank admission of the primary
necessity in the modern community of the "non-party" man of science
and of special knowledge.  Unhappily the hand of the party
politician in Russia was strengthened by the untrammelled
activities of those strange protectors of Marxist authority the
Checka, which became later the G.P.U.  So from 1928, the date of
the First Five Year Plan, in spite of a great driving-force of
enthusiastic devotion, Russia went clumsily, heavily and
pretentiously--a politician's dictatorship, propaganding rather
than performing, disappointing her well-wishers abroad and
thwarting the best intelligences she produced.  When her plans went
wrong through her lack of precise material foresight, she accused,
and imprisoned or shot, engineers and suchlike technical workers.

A further bad result of this ineradicable democratic taint of the
Soviet system was the widening estrangement of the Russian process
from Western creative effort.  Instead of being allies they became
opponents.  As the challenge of social disintegration became more
urgent in the Atlantic countries, it became plainer and plainer
that such hope as there was for the salvaging of a reconstructed
civilization from a welter of disaster lay in the coordinate effort
of intelligent, able and energetic individuals of every nation,
race, type and class.  A revolution was certainly needed, but not a
revolution according to the time-worn formula of street battles and
barricades, not a class war.  A revolution in the very character of
revolutions had to occur.  There was no need for insurrectionary
revolution any longer, since now the system was destroying itself.
The phase for boldly constructive revolution had arrived, and at
every point where constructive effort was made the nagging
antagonism of the Class War fanatic appeared, to impede and divide.
(See, for example, Upton Sinclair on this conflict, in The Way Out,
1933, in the series of reprints under his name, Historical
Documents Series, History of Opinion.)

The waste of creative energy was enormous, not only in Russia but
all over the world.  Multitudes of young men and women in every
civilized community, the living hope of the race, dissipated their
generous youth and vigour in bitter conflicts upon a purely
doctrinaire issue.  The poison of nationalism was abroad to
complicate their reactions.  Many turned against progress
altogether and sought to thrust the world back to some imaginary
lost age of virtue.  So they became Ku Klux Klansmen, Nationalists,
Nazis.  All felt the natural youthful impulse towards large,
effective, vehement action.  All meant well.  They were one in
spirit though they suffered from a confusion of tongues.  The idea
of the Modern State could not for a long time make itself clear to
their imaginations largely because the conspicuous self-
contradictions of Russia stood in the way.

Russia seemed to lead, it sought to lead in its acts and deeds,
and it lied.  Meanwhile, surviving very largely because of this
distraction of creative forces, the elderly methods of Parliamentary
Democracy and the elderly Nationalist Diplomacy remained in
possession of the greater part of the Western World, and the social
collapse it was powerless to arrest continued.

2.  The Sloughing of the Old Educational Tradition

Faber in his interesting and suggestive Historical Analyses (2103)
discusses how far the wars, depressions, pestilences, phases of
semi-famine and periods of actual starvation, in the hundred years
before 2014, were necessary, and how far, with the resources then
available, they might have been avoided by mankind.  He takes the
view that the encumbrance of tradition was so great that for all
that period this martyrdom of our kind was inevitable.  He argues
that without the sufferings of these generations men's minds could
never have been sufficiently purged of their obstinate loyalties,
jealousies, fears and superstitions; men's wills never roused to
the efforts, disciplines and sacrifices that were demanded for the
establishment of the Modern State.

Faber applies his criticism more particularly to this so-called
decadence of education after (circa) 1930.  It has hitherto been
usual to treat the ebb of school-building and schooling that took
place then as a real retrogression, to rank it with the fall in the
general standard of life and the deterioration of public health.
But he advanced some excellent reasons for supposing that, so far
from being an evil, the starvation and obliteration of the old-
world teaching machinery was a necessary preliminary to social

The common school, he insists, had to be born again, had to be
remade fundamentally.  And before that could happen it had to be
broken up and wellnigh destroyed.  He sweeps aside almost
contemptuously the claim that the nineteenth century was an
educational century.  We are misled, he argues, by a mere
resemblance between the schools and universities of the past and
the schools and post-school education of the modern period.  Both
occupy the time of the young, and we do not sufficiently appreciate
the fact that what they are doing with the young is something
entirely different.  Our education is an introduction to the
continual revolutionary advance of life.  But education before the
twenty-first century was essentially a conservative process.  It
was so rigorously and completely traditional that its extensive
disorganization was an inevitable preliminary to the foundation of
a new world.

The word education has come now to cover almost all intellectual
activities throughout life except research and artistic creation.
That was not its original meaning.  It meant originally the
preparation of the young for life.  It did not go on even in
extreme cases beyond three or four and twenty, and usually it was
over by fourteen!  But we draw no line at any age, as our ancestors
did, when learning ceases.  The general information of the public,
public discussion and collective decisions, all fall within the
scope of our educational directorate.  All that was outside what
passed for education in the early Twentieth Century.

What people knew in those days they knew in the most haphazard way.
The privately owned newspapers of the period told the public what
their readers or their proprietors desired; the diffusion of facts
and ideas by the early cinema, the sound radio and so on was
entirely commercialized for the advertisement of goods in America,
and controlled and directed in the interests of influential
politicians in Great Britain; book-publishing, even the publication
of scientific works, was mainly speculative and competitive, and
there was no such thing as a Centre of Knowledge in the world.

It is remarkable to note how long mankind was able to carry on
without any knowledge organization whatever.  No encyclopædia, not
even a bookseller's encyclopædia, had existed before the
seventeenth century, for the so-called Chinese Encyclopædia was a
literary miscellany, and there was no permanent organization of
record even on the part of such mercenary encyclopædias as came
into existence after that date.  Nor was there any conception of
the need of a permanent system of ordered knowledge, continually
revised until the twentieth century was nearing its end.  To the
people of the Age of Frustration our interlocking research,
digest, discussion, verification, notification and informative
organizations, our Fundamental Knowledge System, that is, with its
special stations everywhere, its regional bureaus, its central city
at Barcelona, its seventeen million active workers and its five
million correspondents and reserve enquirers, would have seemed
incredibly vast.  It would have seemed incredibly vast to them in
spite of the fact that the entirely unproductive armies and
military establishments they sustained in those days of universal
poverty were practically as huge.

We are still enlarging this Brain of Mankind, still increasing its
cells, extending its records and making its interactions more rapid
and effective.  A vast independent literature flourishes beside it.
Compared with today our species in the Age of Frustration was as a
whole brainless: it was collectively invertebrate with a few
scattered ill-connected ganglia; it was lethargically ignorant; it
had still to develop beyond the crude rudiments of any coordinated
knowledge at all.

But not only was general knowledge rudimentary, casual, erroneous
and bad.  Faber's case against the old education is worse than
that.  Knowledge was explicitly outside education, outside formal
schooling altogether.  The need for a sound common ideology is a
Modern State idea.  The old, so called "Elementary" schools, Faber
shows, did not pretend to give knowledge.  So far as directive
ideas were concerned, they disavowed this intention.  He quotes a
very revealing contemporary survey of the situation in America by
Dr. G. S. Counts (The American Road to Culture, 1930) in which the
complete ideological sterilization of the common schools of the
Republic is demonstrated beyond question.  The sterilization was
deliberate.  So far as the giving of comprehensive information
about life went, says Faber, there was absolutely nothing valuable
destroyed during this period of educational collapse because
nothing valuable had as yet got into the curricula.  The history
taught in these popular schools was pernicious patriotic twaddle;
the biology, non-existent or prudish and childish--the "facts of
sex", as they were called, were for example TAUGHT by dissecting
flowers--and there was no economic instruction whatever.  The
nineteenth-century "education" was not enlightenment; it was anti-
enlightenment.  Parents, political and religious organizations
watched jealously that this should be so.  He quotes school time-
tables and public discussions and gives samples of the textbooks in

The decline in scientific research, moreover, during this age of
systole, Faber insists, has been greatly exaggerated.  Although
there was certainly a considerable diminution in the number of
actual workers through the destruction of private endowments and
what was called "economy", and although there was also a
considerable interference with the international exchange of ideas
and a slacking down in pace at which ideas grew, there was no
absolute interruption in the advance of ordered science even
through the worst phases of the social breakdown.  Research
displayed a protean adaptability and indestructibility.  It shifted
from the patronage of the millionaire to the patronage of the war
lord; it took refuge in Russia, Spain and South America; it betook
itself to the aeroplane hangars, to rise again in due time to its
present world-predominance.  It had never been pampered under the
régime of private capitalism.  All through that First Age of
Prosperity pure research had lived from hand to mouth.  As soon as
it paid, says Sinclair Lewis in Martin Arrowsmith, it was
commercialized and it degenerated.  When the bad times came the
parasites of science fell away, but the genuine scientific worker,
accustomed to scanty supplies, tightened his belt a little more and
in all sorts of out-of-the-way places stuck to his job.

What really did break up in this period between 1930 and 1950 was a
systematic schooling of the masses which had developed steadily
during the nineteenth century.  Beyond the elements of reading,
speech and counting, this was no more and no less than a drilling
in tradition.  There had been some reforms, more particularly in
method, some advance in the teaching of infants (though this was
sacrificed early in the economy flurry), and a few exceptional
schools emerged, but this was the character of the typical school
of the time.  A progressive multiplication of this kind of school
had indeed gone on in nearly every country in the world even up to
the outbreak of the Great War.  The proportion of "literates" who
could at least read increased steadily.  After that the rate of
advance (except in Russia after 1917, where popular teaching was
only beginning) fell stage by stage to zero.  But what was ebbing
was not really knowledge or instruction at all, but a training in
the binding traditions of the old society.

The story of what used to be called "the conflict between religion
and science" belongs mainly to the history of the nineteenth
century, and we will not tell again here how the fairly stable
structure of Christian belief and disciplines was weakened by the
changes in values that ensued from the revelation of geological and
biological horizons in that period.  Before 1850 more than ninety-
nine per cent of the population of Europe and America believed
unquestioningly that the universe had been created in the year 4004
B.C.  Their intellectual lives were all cramped to the dimensions
of that petty cellule of time.  It was rather frightening for them
to break out.  They succumbed to mental agoraphobia.  The student
knows already of the difficulties experienced by the Christian
ministry during those years of mental release and expansion in
"symbolizing" the Fall and Atonement, which had hitherto been
taught as historical facts, and of the loss of confidence and
authority that came through this unavoidable ambiguity.  The
ensuing controversies thundered and died away into mutterings and
ironies, but the consequences of these disputes became more and
more evident in the succeeding generations.  They evinced
themselves in a universal moral indefiniteness.  The new and old
cancelled out.

The accepted Christian world outlook, both that prescribed by the
Catholic Church and that of the various dissentient Protestant
sects, had carried with it a coarse but fairly effective moral
imperative.  Hell was the ultima ratio of good behaviour.  The
Churches, although badly damaged in argument, were well endowed and
powerfully entrenched in the educational organization.  Their
practical resistance to the new views proved to be more effective
than their controversial efforts.  People had the social habit of
belonging to them and entrusting their children to them.  There
were no other teachers ready; no other schools.  So the traditional
orthodoxies were able to obstruct the development of a modern ethic
in harmony with the new realizations of man's place in space and
time, in spite of the loss of much of their former power of
unquestionable conviction.

Gradually throughout the First Age of General Prosperity the
relative value of their endowments diminished, and they lost
intellectual and moral prestige.  But it was only with the economic
landslides of the post-war period that their material foundations
gave way completely.  For a time these great organizations share in
the common disaster, and when at last under new auspices a
restoration of production occurred they recovered nothing of their
proportional importance.  Their old investments had vanished.  They
suffered with other landlords in the general resumption of estates
by the community.  By 1965 C.E. it was no longer possible for an
ordinary young man to get a living as a minister of any Church.
Holy orders, since they implied an old-world outlook, were also a
grave encumbrance for an ambitious teacher.  It was extraordinary
with what facility the priests and parsons changed their collars
and vanished into the crowd with the progressive disappearance of
their endowments.  The organized Christian Churches pass out of
history at last almost as quickly as the priesthood of Baal
vanished after the Persian conquest.  There is considerable
plausibility in Faber's contention that they could have disappeared
in no other way.

It had been usual to treat the extensive destruction of social
morale which characterized this period as due to the interregnum
between the fading out of the Christian ethic and the moral and
intellectual establishment of modern conduct.  Faber questions that
boldly.  He admits that the morale of Western civilization was
built up very largely by Christian agencies, but he denies that
they were sustaining it.  He ascribes its evaporation almost
entirely to the destruction of social confidence which we have
noted already as a natural consequence of the wild fluctuations of
economic security and monetary values at that time.  Men ceased to
respect society because they felt they were being cheated and
betrayed by society.

3.  Disintegration and Crystallization in the Social Magma.  The
    Gangster and Militant Political Organizations

The dissolutions and regroupings of people that were going on
through this period have always attracted the attention of the
social philosopher.  The common man had lost his faith in a
friendly God, his confidence in social justice and his educational
and social services.  He was out of employment and stirred by
unsatisfied appetites.  The time-honoured life of work and family
interests had become impossible for a growing majority.

What we now call social nucleation was failing; the grouping of
human beings in families and working communities was not going on.
They became restive and troublesome.  The social confidence and
discipline that had prevailed throughout the nineteenth century
deteriorated very rapidly.  There was a swift fall in social

Phases of fever have occurred time without number in human history,
phases of unsettlement and confused motivation, clottings and
drives and migrations of population.  Periods of tranquil assurance
are the exception throughout the ages.  But in the past it has
usually been the exhaustion of food supplies, pestilence or some
cruel invasion that has broken up the social texture and made
humanity lawless again.  This new disintegration was of a different
character.  It was due in the first place to an increase rather
than a diminution of material and energy in the social scheme.  It
was a process of expansion which went wrong through the inadequacy
of traditional law and government.

The disintegrative forces were already evident in the eighteenth
century; they became very conspicuous in the French Revolution and
the subsequent social and political disturbances but they only rose
to a plain domination of the controlling forces after the World

In the seventeenth century, when population was thin and hardly
anyone moved about, it had been possible to keep order by means of
a village constable, to try the malefactor by a local magistrate
and jury which knew him thoroughly and understood his position and
motives.  Dogberry and Shallow sufficed.  But the economic growth
of the eighteenth century increased the size of towns and the
traffic on the newly made roads between them without any
corresponding increase in the forces of order.  It produced,
therefore, the urban mob, the footpad, the highwayman and the
brigand.  The local constable was unequal to these new demands; the
local magistrate as inadequate.  There was a phase of increasing

After the failure of a régime of savage punishment uncertainly
inflicted, after the excesses of the first French Revolution, after
phases of mob violence in every European capital, and endless other
manifestations of this outpacing of social control, the machinery
of government did by an effort adjust itself to the new conditions.
More or less modernized police forces appeared throughout the world
and inaugurated a new phase of order and security, a phase which
reached its maximum in the years before the Great War.  For a time
then the world, or at any rate very considerable areas of it, was
almost as safe as it is today.  An unarmed man could go about in
reasonable security in most of Europe, India, China, America.
Nobody offered him violence or attempted open robbery.  Even the
policeman in the English-speaking and Western European communities
carried no weapon but a truncheon.

But the World War broke down many of the inhibitions of violence
and bloodshed that had been built up during the progressive years
of the nineteenth century and an accumulating number of
intelligent, restless unemployed men, in a new world of motor-cars,
telephones, plate-glass shop windows, unbarred country houses and
trustful social habits, found themselves faced with illegal
opportunities far more attractive than any legal behaviour-system
now afforded them.  And now after the world slump that insanity of
public economy which runs like a disease through the story of the
age prevented any prompt enlargement and modernization of the
existing educational, legal or police organizations.  The scale and
prestige of the law-court and police-court dwindled as the problems
presented to them by the vast irregular developments of that period
of stress and perplexity increased.

So the stage was set for a lawless phase.  The criminal was
liberated from parochialism and reactionary economies long before
his antagonist the policeman, and he experienced all the
invigoration and enlargement of that release.  The criminal grew
big while the law, pot-bound in its traditional swathings, was
unable to keep pace with him.

The criminal records of this disorderly interlude make strange
reading today.  Things that were terrible enough at the time appear
to us now as they recede into the past through a thickening, highly
retractile veil of grotesqueness and picturesque absurdity.  We
read about them, as we read about mediæval tortures or cannibal
feasts or war atrocities or human sacrifice, with a startled
incredulity.  We laugh now; it is all so IMPOSSIBLE.  Few of us
actually realize these were flesh-and-blood sufferings that living
men and women went through only a century and a half ago.

The criminals of the more fortunate countries of the European
system, during that First Age of General Prosperity before the
World War, like the few cases of intolerable behaviour with which
society deals today, had constituted a small abnormal and
diminishing minority for the most part mental defectives or at best
very inferior types.  The majority of their offences were emotional
or brutish offences.  There was some stealing and a steady
proportion of swindling in business, not sufficient to disturb the
social order at all seriously.  But as the morale of the old order
dissolved, this ceased to be the case.  Increasing numbers of
intelligent and enterprising people found themselves in conflict
with society because, as they argued very reasonably, society had
cheated them.  Patriotism too, they felt, had cheated them and
given them nothing but poverty and war.  They had never had a fair
chance.  They looked after themselves and left the community to
look after itself.  They fell back on the nearer loyalties of their
immediate associates.

Your "pal" at any rate was close at hand.  If he "let you down",
you had a fair chance to "get at" him.  Little gang-nuclei came
into existence, therefore, wherever unassimilated elements of the
population were congested and humiliated or wherever intelligent
men festered in unemployment and need.

In 1900 European society in particular was still nucleated about
the family group in relation to a generally understood code of
lawful behaviour.  In 1950 its individuals were either nucleated
into gangs, groups or societies or dissolved into crowds, and the
influence and pretence of any universally valid standard of good
conduct had disappeared.

Robbery is the first great division in the catalogue of anti-social
offences.  Every efficient government in the past reserved to
itself the sole right of dispossession, and every intelligent
government exercised the right with extreme discretion.  In the
past of unregulated private ownership the filching of portable
objects and raids upon unguarded possessions were always going on.
In Great Britain, in which country the highest levels of social
order were attained during the First Age of General Prosperity,
stealing (with which we may include various forms of embezzlement
and fraud) remained the chief offence upon the list.  Almost all
the others had become exceptional.  But whenever there was a dip in
the common prosperity, more active methods of robbery appeared to
supplement the ordinary theft.  The snatcher began to take his
chance with bags and watches.  The enterprise of the burglar
increased.  Then came the simple hold-up under threats, or robbery
with assault.  In a world of general confidence, unarmed and
unaccompanied people were going about everywhere wearing valuable
jewellery and carrying considerable sums of money.  But that
atmosphere of confidence could be rapidly chilled.  Even in later-
nineteenth-century Britain there were epidemics of robbery by
single men or by men in couples, the "garrotters" of the sixties,
for example, who assaulted suddenly from behind and seized the
watch and pocket-book.  They would clap a pitch plaster over their
victim's mouth.  There were brief phases when the suburban regions
even of London and Paris became unsafe, and at no time were any but
the more central regions of some of the great American cities
secure.  This kind of thing increased notably everywhere after the
World War.

There were manifest limits to this hold-up business.  It was
something that extinguished itself.  There had to be a general
feeling of practical security for that type of robbery to prosper.
There had to be people to rob.  Robbery from the person is an acute
and not a chronic disease of communities.  So soon as the footpad
became too prevalent people ceased to carry so many valuables, they
shunned lonely or dark streets and roads, they went about in
company and began to bear arms.  The epidemic of hold-ups passed
its maximum and declined.

The criminally disposed soon learnt the importance of association
for the exploitation of new lines of effort.  With a more alert and
defensive and less solitary type of victim, the casual criminal
developed into the planning criminal.  In every country multiplying
nuclei of crime began to work out the problems of that terroristic
gang discipline which is imperative upon those who combine to defy
the law.  In Europe the intensifying tariff wars put an increasing
premium upon the enterprise of the smuggler, and in smuggling
enterprises men readily developed those furtive secret loyalties,
those sub-laws of the underworld, which proved so readily
applicable to more aggressive efforts.  In America the repressive
laws against alcohol had already created the necessary conditions
for a similar morbid organization of gang systems, which had become
readily confluent with the older associations for political
corruption and terrorism.  As the economic breakdown proceeded
throughout the thirties and forties of the twentieth century,
ordinary social security diminished even more rapidly in America
than in Europe.  But everywhere a parallel dégringolade was going
on.  Now it would be the criminal forces in one country and now
those in another which were leading in novel attacks upon the law-
abiding citizen of the decaying order.

The hold-up in force became bolder and more frequent.  History
repeated itself with variations.  In the place of the highwayman of
the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries came the motor-car bandit
and the train-robber.  Trains-de-luxe were successfully held up by
armed bands, first of all in Eastern Europe and America and then
very generally.  These were operations involving the concerted
action of a dozen men or more, who had to be sure of their "get
away" and with a market for their loot.  Country houses and country
clubs full of wealthy guests presently began to be attacked--the
telephones cut and the whole place systematically looted.
Restaurants, gambling-clubs and other resorts of people with full
pocket-books were also raided with increasing efficiency.  Local
banks and bank branches became insecure.  Until the nineteen-
thirties a town bank had a large open handsome office with swinging
doors, low counters and glass partitions.  Ten years later the face
of the bank had changed: the clerks were protected by steel
defences, they were armed with revolvers, and they parleyed with
the customer through small pigeonholes that could be promptly

This change in the scale and quality of aggressive crime was
reflected in public manners and display.  The wearing of jewellery,
gold watch-chains, expensive studs and suchlike challenges to
poverty declined, costume became more "buttoned up" and restrained.
Hip-pocket weapons spread from America to Europe.  Women's dress
and ornaments, though if anything they improved in their artistic
quality, diminished in intrinsic value.  Everywhere there was a
diminution of social ostentation.  Houses with narrow exterior
windows and well equipped with steel doors, locks, bolts and bars,
were preferred to those candidly exposed to sunlight and exterior
observation.  The window displays of the town shops became more

The need for protection and the dread of conspicuousness affected
automobile design.  The common automobile of the middle twentieth
century was a sullen-looking pugnacious beast.  And its occupants
were in harmony with it.  Before the World War the spectacle of a
broken-down vehicle or any such trouble by the wayside would induce
almost any passing car to stop and offer assistance.  Under the new
conditions people feared a decoy.  They would refuse to stop after
twilight, and even in the daytime they sometimes hurried on, though
injured or apparently injured people might be lying by the

Travel diminished very rapidly under such conditions.  There is
some difficulty about the statistics, but between 1928 and 1938 the
number of pleasure travellers upon the roads and railways of
continental Europe fell by something over, rather than under,
eighty per cent.  There were, of course, other causes at work
besides the general insecurity of movement in producing this
decline; there was a general impoverishment also which disposed
people to stay at home.  But the major factor was insecurity.

The roads were less and less frequented as they became unsafe.
Many fell out of repair, and the old road-signs and petrol pumps,
now dear to our school-museum collectors, vanished one by one from
the landscape.

Improvements in robbery were only one group of the criminal
developments in progress.  A much more distressful aspect was the
organization of terroristic blackmail, at first directed against
individuals and then against whole classes in the community.  As
people ceased to travel to be robbed, the robber had to pursue them
to their homes.  Here again American inventiveness and enterprise
led the world.  By imperceptible degrees the ordinary prosperous
citizen found his life enmeshed in a tangle of threats and vague
anxieties.  Even during the prosperous period there had been an
element of menace in the lives of the American well-to-do; their
securities had never been quite secure and their positions never
perfectly stable.  But now over and above the ever increasing
instability of possessions and income came the increasing need to
buy off molestation.  Breaking through the now inadequate
protection of the police appeared silently and grimly and more and
more openly the blackmailer, the kidnapper and the gang terrorist.

A particularly cruel form of attack upon unprotected private people
was the threatening and kidnapping of young children.  It had a
minor grotesque side in the stealing and ransoming of pet animals.
Many hundreds of children had been stolen, hidden away, and brought
back for reward before the abduction and murder of the child of
Colonel Lindbergh, a long-distance aviator very popular in America,
called general attention to this increasing nuisance.  Nothing
effective, however, was done to control these practices, and in the
bad years that followed 1930 kidnapping and the threat of
kidnapping increased very greatly, and spread to the old world.  It
was organised.  Men and women were spirited away, intimidated by
threats of torture, held captive.  If the pursuit was pressed too
hard they disappeared and were heard of no more.  Assassinations
multiplied.  Bodies of men set themselves up almost without
concealment under such names as Citizens' Protection Societies, or
Civil Order Associations.  The man who wanted to be left alone in
peace, he and his household, was pressed to pay his tribute to the
gang.  Or he would not be left in peace.  And even if his
particular "protectors" left him in peace, there might still be
other gangs about for whom they disavowed responsibility and with
whom he had to make a separate deal.

It was not merely the well-to-do who were worried and levied upon
in this fashion.  An increasing proportion of minor workers and
traders found it necessary to pay a percentage of their gains or
earnings to escape systematic persecution.  "Trouble" was the
characteristic American word.  "You don't want to have trouble,"
said the blackmailer, gently but insistently.

The new generation grew up into a world of secret compromises and
underhand surrenders.  The common man picked his way discreetly
through a world of possible trouble.  No one dared live who was not
a member (and servant) of a Union of some kind.  It was a return to
very ancient conditions, conditions that had prevailed for ages in
China, for instance, and in Sicily and Southern Italy.  But it was
a relapse from the freedom and confidence of the better days at the
close of the nineteenth century.  It was a contraction of everyday
human happiness.

Kidnapping was not confined to kidnapping for ransom.  There had
always been a certain irrepressible trade in the beguiling and
stealing of young persons for sexual prostitution, and this also
increased again.  Workers were kidnapped, and the intimidation of
workers in factories became bolder and less formally legal.  There
was a great release of violence in personal quarrels, and in
particular crimes of revenge multiplied.  In a phase of dwindling
confidence and happiness, people of spirit no longer recoiled from
the tragic ending of oppressive situations.  They took the law into
their own hands.  They began to fight and kill, and they were no
longer inevitably overtaken by the law.

The remaining rich, the financial adventurers who still appeared,
the prominent political leaders, the transitory "kings" of the
underworld, all surrounded themselves with bodyguards.  Types
recalling the hired "bravos" of the Italian cities of the later
Middle Ages and the Samurai of the Japanese noblemen reappeared as
the hefty private attendants of the wealthier Americans.  After the
economic slump had fairly set in the posse of needy retainers
became a universal practice with all who could afford it.  They
protected the person and the home.  They supplemented the police.

The transition from a protective to an aggressive bodyguard was
inevitable.  Leading American bootleggers were the chief offenders,
but the example was contagious.  "Brawling" of retainers reappeared
first in America, Germany and Ireland.  These brawls were usually
small street battles, or conflicts at race meetings and suchlike
gatherings, or side issues to political meetings and processions.
It was a courageous politician who would face an audience after
1938 unless he knew that his men were about him and posted at
strategically important points in the meeting.  And he would be
wearing a mail undervest or suchlike protection of his more vital
parts.  There are hundreds of such garments in our museums.

No man, woman or child that "mattered" went about "unshadowed"
after 1940.  After the middle nineteenth century women had made
great advances toward personal freedom.  About 1912 a pretty girl
in her teens might have taken a knapsack and marched off alone
through the northern states of Europe or America in perfect safety,
unmolested.  All this freedom vanished during the age of
insecurity.  Women ceased to go about without an escort even in the
towns.  It was not until 2014 that there was any real return
towards the former common liberties of the young and weak and
gentle.  There was on the part of women, as the novels of the time
reveal, a survival of social fear in human life, the fear of going
alone, until the middle of the twenty-first century.

After 1945 a fresh aspect of insecurity appears in the records.
There is mention of unsafe roadside hotels, and a great increase
not simply of streets, but of whole districts and villages where
"things happened", people disappeared, and it was inadvisable for
strangers to go.  Some of these criminally infected areas did not
recover their reputations for three quarters of a century.  The
DANGEROUS big hotel with its secret lifts, passages, ambushes and
sinister private rooms is still the delight of our popular
romancers; it loses nothing in elaboration as it recedes into the

The psychology of the twentieth-century policeman has been made the
subject of a whole group of historical studies.  There was no
connection in those days between the policeman and either the
educational or medical services.  This association which appears so
inevitable to us today would have seemed insane to the organizers
of the first police forces in the eighteenth and nineteenth
centuries.  The policeman, for them, was to be an animated barrier
and signpost, capable of leaping into action at the sight of
assault, petty larceny or unseemly behaviour.  Beyond that very
little initiative was expected from him.  He took into custody
people who were "given in charge".  Above him were officers,
usually of a different class, and associated with the force was a
group of criminal enquiry experts, who were quite capable of
handling most of the offences against the law that prevailed in the
era before the extensive introduction of rapid transit, power
machinery and mass production.  This pattern of police force worked
fairly well up to the beginning of the twentieth century.  Except
in districts where sexual prostitution was rife it remained fairly
honest.  It maintained a fairly high level of liberty, security of
property and social order for a century.  Only when the control of
morals or political intervention was thrust upon it did it prove
unequal to the strain.

And then, as the greater community of the World State began to
struggle clumsily and painfully out of traditional forms, we see
police control again outpaced by its task.  It gives way.  "Why,"
the student asks, "was this police organization unable to keep pace
with the new stresses?  Why were the ruling people of that time so
incapable of fitting it to the new demands upon it?"  We have
already indicated the main lines of the answer.  Just when the need
for a fundamental refashioning of the police of the world was
becoming urgent, came also, first that exacerbation of international
hostilities, of "secret service" and espionage to render any broad
international handling of the problem impossible, and secondly that
desperately foolish sacrifice of life to the creditor which seems to
be the inevitable conclusion of any social system based on

The Profit-Capitalist System was absolutely incapable of
controlling the unemployment it had evoked and the belligerence it
stimulated.  It stagnated on its hoards.  It fought against
inflation and it fought against taxation.  It died frothing
economies at the mouth.  It killed the schools on which public
acquiescence rested.  Impartially it restricted employment and the
relief of the unemployed.  Even on this plain issue of its police
protection it economized.  Impossible, it said, to plan a new
police when we cannot even pay for the police we have.

And so the desperate fight of an essentially nineteenth-century
pattern of police organization, under-financed, inadequately
equipped, divided up, controlled by small-scale, antiquated
national or parochial authorities, in many cases rotten with
corruption, against the monstrous forces of disorganization
released by the irregular hypertrophies to social development was
added to the other conflicts of that distressful age.

In spite of a notable amount of corruption and actual descents
into criminality, the general will of most of the police forces
seems to have remained sound.  Most but not all.  Most of these
organizations did keep up a fight for order even when they were in
a process of dissolution.  They did keep up their traditional war
against crime.  But their methods underwent a considerable
degeneration, which was shared, and shared for the same reason, by
the criminal law of the period.  Police and prosecutor both felt
that the dice were loaded against them, that they were battling
against unfair odds.  Their war against crime became a feud.  It
grew less and less like a serene control, and more and more like
a gang conflict.  They were working in an atmosphere in which
witnesses were easily intimidated and local sympathy more
often than not against the law.  This led to an increasing
unscrupulousness on their part in the tendering and treatment of
evidence.  In many cases (see Aubrey Wilkinson's The Natural
History of the Police Frame-up, 1991) the police deliberately
manufactured evidence against criminals they had good reason to
believe guilty, and perjured themselves unhesitatingly.  Wilkinson
declares that in the early twentieth century hundreds of thousands
of wrongdoers were "justly condemned on false evidence", and that
they could have been condemned in no other way.

But the apologetics of Wilkinson for the police break down when he
comes to the next aspect of their degeneration under stress.  We
have all read with horror of the use of torture in mediæval
practice and shuddered at the fact that there were even special
machines and instruments in those days, the rack, the thumbscrew,
the boot and so forth, for the infliction of pain.  But there
remains little doubt now that the police of the twentieth century,
fighting with their backs to the wall against enormous odds, did go
very far towards a revival of torture against those they believed
to be social dangers.  It is a difficult as well as an ugly task to
disentangle this story now, but sufficient fact emerges to show us
that in the general decay of behaviour that was going on, not
merely casual blows and roughness of handling, but the systematic
exhaustion, pestering, ill-treatment and actual torment of persons
under arrest in order to extort confessions and incriminating
statements, became prevalent.

There is no real distinction in nature between the processes that
led up to this chaotic nucleation of human beings about gangs and
organizations for frankly criminal purposes and those which led to
protective associations for the illegal maintenance of security and
order and again to those much wider allegiances within the state
such as the nationalist Sokols in the Austrian provinces that
became Szecho Slovakia, the Irish Republican organizations, the Ku
Klux Klan in America, the multitudinous secret societies of India,
China, and Japan, the Communist Party which captured Russia, the
Fascist who captured Italy, the Nazis who captured Germany, all of
which pursued on bolder and bolder scales large intimidatory and
revolutionary economic and political ends.  All these were
structurally great gangster systems.  Instead of specific immediate
blackmail they sought larger satisfactions; that is all the
difference.  Even when the organisation as a whole had large
conceptions of its function, it was apt to degenerate locally into
a mere boss or bully rule.  All these forms of recrystallization
within the community, large and small, arose because of the
inadaptability and want of vigour and cooperation in the formal
governing, economically directive and educational systems.  Because
there was no foresight to ensure continuity in the growth of
institutions, there were these unpremeditated and often morbid
growths, expressive of the accumulating discomfort and discontent
and of the need for a more intimate, energetic and fruitful form of
human association.

It is paradoxical but true that the civilized human society of the
later nineteenth and earlier twentieth centuries broke up because
of the imperative need of human beings to live in active
combination.  It was pulled to pieces by its own new cohesions.
Until there was a complete, satisfactory and vigorous World-State
organization potentially in being, the continuation of this
breaking up and reassembling of social energy was inevitable.  It
was like the break-up of caterpillar organs in the cocoon to form
the new structures of the imago.

Even the Modern State Fellowship itself, so far as many of its
nuclei were concerned, was at first of this nature, a coalescence
of all these varied technicians who realized that employment would
vanish, that everything they valued in life would vanish, with the
spread of social disorder.  They constituted protective and
aggressive gangs with an unexampled power of world-wide
cooperation.  Their confluence became the new world.

The demoralization of the world's sea life, thanks to the surviving
vestiges of naval power, was far less rapid and complete than the
spread of disorder on the land.  It was only after the series of
naval mutinies towards the end of the last European war that the
ancient practice of piracy was resumed.  Even then ships could
still be policed and a recalcitrant ship brought to book much more
easily than the black streets of a town.  One or two pleasure
liners were boarded and held up in out-of-the-way ports in the
thirties, but in no case did the assailants get away with their
plunder.  In 1933 the Chinese fleet had disintegrated into shipfuls
of adventurers offering their services by wireless to the various
governments who divided the country.  But these stray warships did
little mischief before they were bought, captured or sunk by the

A Canadian pleasure liner, The King of the Atlantic, on one of the
last holiday voyages to be made, was seized on the high seas by an
armed gang in 1939, and an attempt was made to hold its passengers
to ransom.  They were all to be killed if the pursuit was pressed
home.  In the face, however, of a combined attack by American sea
and air forces, at that time still efficient though greatly in
arrears with their pay, the hearts of the gangsters failed them and
they surrendered ignominiously.

No ship of over 9,000 tons was ever captured by pirates.  This
relative maintenance of orderliness at sea was due to special
conditions--the then recent discovery of radio communications, for
example.  It outlasted the practical cessation of shipbuilding in
the forties and an immense shrinkage in the world's shipping.

Nor did new types of criminal appear in the air until after the
third European conflict, and then not overwhelmingly.  Here again
was a field of human activity, essentially simple and controllable.
For a time indeed the aeroplane was the safest as well as the
swiftest method of getting about the world.  For some years after
the practical cessation of general land travel the infrequent
aviator still hummed across the sky, over dangerous city and
deserted highroad, over ruined country houses and abandoned
cultivations, recalling the memory of former disciplines and the
promise of an orderly future.

There were fewer aeroplanes just as there were fewer ships, and,
because of the general discouragement of enterprise, there was
little change of type, yet the skies, like the high seas, remained
practically outside the range of the general social debacle until
well past the middle of the century.  The need for aerodromes, for
repairing and fuelling, held the dwindling body of aviators
together.  Air outrages at the worst phase were still scattered and
disconnected events.  And it was in the air at last and along the
air routes that the sword of a new order reappeared.

4.  Changes in War Practice after the World War

The science and practice of warfare during this Age of Frustration,
having now no adequate directing and controlling forces over it,
pursued, in its development, a preposterous and dreadful logic of
its own.

In 1914, at the outbreak of the World War, military science had
been a pretentious and backward lore.  The War Offices, as we have
told, had allowed the armament industry to put enormously outsize
weapons into their hands, but they had made none of the necessary
mental adjustments needed to meet this change of scale.  All the
land commanders engaged in that struggle with scarcely an exception
were still fighting clumsily according to the obsolete tradition of
nineteenth-century warfare.  They were still thinking in terms of
frontal attack, outflanking, the break-through and so-forth.  We
have told as briefly as we could the horrors of the ensuing
harvest.  The Admiralties, forewarned perhaps by their engineers,
showed a livelier discretion and for the most part hid away their
costly fleets from the disasters of combat in strongly defended
harbours, and allowed them to emerge only on one or two wild
occasions for battle so inconclusive that they were prolonged as
controversies for years afterwards and remain undecided to this
day.  The submarine, the minefield, the aeroplane, the primitive
"tank", organized propaganda to weaken war will, a tentative use of
gas, and the replacement of many of the elder commanders as the war
proceeded did something to modify land fighting, but to the very
last, when the general collapse of "morale" led to the armistice,
the professional soldiers were clinging to the idea that nothing
fundamental had happened to the methods of their ancient and
honoured profession.

All this changed after the Peace of Versailles.  A spirit of unrest
entered into both the War Offices and Foreign Offices of the world.
They were invaded by a consciousness of great changes none the less
potent because it was belated and had accumulated.  The younger
generals who had been through the war could not put out of their
minds memories of attacks from overhead, gas attacks, tank actions,
and, above all, the loose ungentlemanly comments of temporary
officers of practical ability and unmilitary habits of mind.  These
younger generals aged in their turn, and as they aged they
succeeded to positions of authority.  They came into power
repeating perpetually:  "We must keep pace with the times."

A phase of extreme innovation succeeded the conservatism of the
older generation.  Everywhere the War Offices stirred with novel
conceptions of strange inventions, secret novelties and furtive
systematic research.  Everywhere the obscure reports of spies and
informants, carefully fostered by the armament dealers affected,
stimulated this forced inventiveness.

It was realized that the old warfare had in fact perished in a
state of lumpish hypertrophy in the trenches.  It had indeed been a
"war to end war"--and the old war was done for.  The new warfare
had to replace it--and quickly.  The Foreign Offices demanded it.
They could not do without war of some sort.  Sovereignty was war.
The traditional state was an organization against foreigners
resting on the ultimate sanction of belligerence.  They could
imagine no other state of affairs, for to begin with that would
have involved imagining themselves non-existent.  The thirties and
forties of the century teemed with furtive and grotesquely hideous
researches to discover and develop the methods of the New Warfare.
For the only alternative to further war was the abandonment of
state sovereignty, and for that men's minds were altogether

The changes in war method that went on between 1900 and 1950 C.E.,
with the possible exception of the introduction of firearms between
the twelfth and sixteenth centuries, were far greater than anything
that had ever happened since the earliest men hit and scuffled in
their first rude group encounters.  For endless ages the main
conflict had been the "battle", the encounter of bodies of men on
foot or on horseback.  The infantry had been the traditional
backbone of the army, and (except when the Huns and the Mongols
refused to play according to the rules) the cavalry was secondary.
Artillery was used only for "preparation" before the attack.  So
fought Rameses, so Alexander, so Cæsar, so Napoleon.  The glorious
victories during the romantic ages of human warfare all amounted to
battles of practically the same pattern, to a great central
battering with pikes, swords, bayonets, maces or suchlike
implements, a swiping, pushing, punching, pelting, stabbing, poking
and general clapperclawing amidst a shower of comparatively light
missiles, that went on at longest for a few hours, and ended in a
break, a flight, a cavalry pursuit and a massacre.  This "open
warfare" alternated, it is true, with long sieges, less
sportsmanlike phases, in which the contending hosts refused battle
and squatted unwholesomely in excavations and behind walls,
annoying each other by raids and attempts to storm and break
through, until hunger, pestilence, the decay of discipline under
boredom, or the exasperation of the surrounding population broke up
the party.  Non-combatants suffered considerable temporary and
incidental molestation during warfare, there was a certain amount
of raping and looting, devastation to destroy supplies, pressed
labour and spy-hunting on a scale which amounted in most cases to
little more than an exacerbation of normal criminality.  Wholesale
devastation, such as the break-up of the irrigation of Mesopotamia
by the Mongols, or the laying waste of Northumbria by William the
Conqueror of England, was, when it occurred, a measure of policy
rather than a war measure.  War had to go on for many decades
before it could produce such disorganisation as that of Asia Minor
in the wars between Byzantium and Persia.  The Islamic invasions
were at first made additionally disagreeable by religious
propaganda, but this was speedily replaced by discriminatory
taxation.  The long distance campaigns of Roman, Hunnish and Mongol
armies again spread various once localized infectious and
contagious diseases very widely; but the total influence of the old
warfare upon human destiny was enormously exaggerated by the
nationalist historians of the old régime.  It was of infinitely
less importance than migration.  The peasant life went on
unchangingly, squalid and laborious, as it had been going on for
the majority of human beings since agriculture began.  The various
"Decisive Battles of the World" were high points in that fantasy of
the pedants, the great "drama of the empires", with which they
befogged the human mind for so long during its gropings from the
peasant state of life towards a sane and orderly way of living.

But with the Napoleonic wars, the soldier began to invade and
modify the texture of normal life as he had never done before, by
conscription, by unprecedented monetary levies, indemnities and
taxes that dislocated economic processes; and conversely, quite
uninvited by the soldier, as we have shown, the expanding forces of
power industrialism and of mass manipulation through journalistic
and other sorts of propaganda, invaded both the military field and
the common life.  War, which had been like the superficial
ploughing of our ancestors, became a subsoil plough, an excavator
that went deeper and deeper, that began presently to deflect
underground springs and prepare extensive landslides.

The Generals of the World War were all in the position of
inexperienced amateurs in charge of vast mechanisms beyond their
power of control.  War, which formerly had been fought on the flat
along a "front", suddenly reached through and over the contending
armies, and allowed no one to stand out of it any more.  The New
Warfare, it was already being remarked by 1918, was a war of whole
populations, from which all respect for the non-combatant was
vanishing.  People said this, and some few even tried to understand
in detail what it meant.  And now all over the world military
gentlemen, many of them still adorned with the spurs, epaulettes,
froggings, buttons, stripes, ribbons, medals, residual scraps of
armour and suchlike pretty glories of the good old times, set
themselves most valiantly to work out the possibilities and methods
of the New Warfare.

Courage was always the better part of the military tradition, and
nothing could exceed the courage with which these men set
themselves throughout this period to overtake the march of
invention, to master engineering and engineers, chemistry and
chemists, war correspondents and newspaper editors, biology,
medicine, and even finance, in their efforts to keep that ancient
war idea, the idea of the battling sovereign state, alive.  As we
have seen, the schools stood loyally by them; they had the support
of the armament industries, and, less whole-heartedly perhaps, the
approval of the old religions and of the old royalties and
loyalties.  Their activities were profoundly stupid, but the
grotesque horror of their achievements, the distress and
unhappiness of three generations of our race, are still recent
enough to mask their ludicrous quality.

The literature of the military science of this period is a copious
one, and perhaps the best survey of it all is Fuller-Metsch's The
Ideas of the New Warfare in the Middle Twentieth Century (2001).
Therein the writer sets himself to three enquiries:  "For what did
they suppose they were going to fight?"  "How were they going to
fight?"  And "What did they consider would constitute a definitive
end and winding-up of their fighting?"

The answer he gives is a composite one.  No single individual seems
to have grasped the New Warfare in its entirety.  With a solemn
pedantry, a pretentious modesty, each "expert" dealt with his own
department and left it to Fate to put the assembled parts together
into a whole.  But what the composite soldier of 1935 was
contemplating rather foggily seems to have been very much as
follows.  He conceived the world as divided up among a number of
governments or Powers.  These were the sovereign states as the
Treaty of Westphalia (1642) presented them.  All these powers were
competitive and passively or actively hostile.  The intervals when
the hostility was active were wars.  The intervals of recuperation
and preparation were peace.  War was a cessation of a truce between
the belligerents, a cessation arising out of an irreconcilable
dispute or clash of interests, and the objective then of each Power
was to impose its Will upon its enemy.  In the days before the
twentieth century this imposition of Will was done more or less
professionally by the governments and armies.  One or other Power
took the offensive, crossed its borders and marched on the enemy
seat of government.  After various operations and battles the
capital would be captured or the invader driven back to his own,
and a peace made and a treaty signed more or less in accordance
with the Will of the victor.  Boundaries would be adjusted in
accordance with that Will, colonies transferred, indemnities
arranged for; the victorious Power expanded and the defeated
shrivelled.  The people of the unsuccessful Power would be very
much ashamed of themselves.  To the end of the nineteenth century
this formula was observed.

But by the time of the World War much more than the disappearance
of the "front" and the increasing entanglement of the erstwhile
non-combatants was happening to this procedure.  The Powers were
losing their definite identities.  The fine question of what
constituted a responsible government capable of imposing a Will, or
giving in to it, arose.  In Russia, for example, was the new
Communist régime responsible for the obligations of the Autocracy?
Was Germany, were all the Germans, to be held responsible for
Krupp-Kaiser militarism?  Was a dummy Sultan in Constantinople, or
Kemal Pasha in Angora, the proper authority to consent to the
dismemberment of Turkey?  Again, the United States of America had
come gaily into the war and then declined effective participation
in President Wilson's settlement.  He had not, it seemed, been a
plenipotentiary.  Was that behaving as a Power should behave?

Still further perplexities arose about the laws of war.  If the
front was abolished, if civilians were to be bombed from the air,
what became of the right of professional soldiers to shoot franc-
tireurs and destroy their homes?  It was as if the arena of a
football match were invaded by the spectators, who began kicking
the ball about, chasing the referee, and declining to keep any
score as between the original sides in the game.

The military authority recoiled from these devastating riddles of
the new age.  Such issues, he decided, were not for him.  There had
always been sides in a war, and there must still be sides.  It was
for the politicians to define them.  He fell back on his
fundamental conception of a Power "imposing its Will" upon another
Power, but using now, in addition to the old invasion and march on
the capital, the new methods of propaganda, blockades and attacks
behind the front, and all the latest chemical and aerial devices to
"undermine the morale" of the enemy population and dispose its
government to yield.  In the end there must be a march, if only a
concluding professional march, through the goal or capital of the
losing side.  He refused to entertain the inevitable problem of an
enemy government not yielding but collapsing, and leaving no
responsible successor.  That was not his affair.  Presumably in
that case the war would continue indefinitely.

Nor was it his business to enter into the financial aspects of the
matter, to estimate any ratio whatever between the costs of the New
Warfare and the material advantages to be exacted when the Will of
the conqueror was imposed.  In that regard he was excessively
modest.  He could not be expected to think of everything.  His
business was to prepare the best and most thorough war possible,
with all the latest improvements, and quite regardless of cost, for
his Power.  It was for his government to find out how to pay for
and use the war he had prepared for it.  Or to use it partially.
War, just war itself, was the limit of his task.

Research for the latest improvements soon led the now almost
morbidly progressive military mind to some horrifying discoveries.
Some of the soldiers concerned were certainly badly scared by the
realization of what evils it was now possible to inflict in
warfare.  It leaked out in their speeches and books.  But they kept
on.  They kept on partly because they had a stout-hearted tradition
and refused to be dismayed, but mainly no doubt for the same reason
that the Christian priests and bishops who had lost their faith
still stuck to their Churches--because it was the only job they
could do.  Throughout the three decades that followed the Congress
of Versailles, thousands of highly intelligent men, specialist
soldiers, air soldiers, engineering soldiers, chemical, medical
soldiers and the like, a far ampler and more energetic personnel
than that devoted to the solution of the much more urgent and
important financial riddles of the time, were working out, with
unstinted endowments and the acquiescence and approval of their
prospective victims, patiently, skilfully, thoroughly, almost
inconceivably, abominable novelties for the surprise and torture of
human beings.

None of these experts seems to have been more than mediocre; it was
an age of mental and moral mediocrities; and even within the
accepted limitation we have already noted, none of them seems to
have worked out the New Warfare as a whole complete process.
Groups of men working in secrecy, immune from outer criticism,
naturally conspire not only against the foreigner but against each
other, and most of the men in decisive positions were rather men
skilled in securing appointments and promotion than inspired
specialists.  A certain lumbering quality in their devices ensued.

In Great Britain a group of these experts became exceedingly busy
in what was called mechanical warfare.  The British had first
invented, and then made a great mess of, the tank in the World War,
and they were a tenacious people.  The authorities stuck to it
belatedly but doggedly.  In a time of deepening and ever bitterer
parsimony their War Office spared no expense in this department.
It was the last of all to feel the pinch.  The funny land ironclads
of all sizes these military "inventors" produced, from a sort of
armoured machine-gunner on caterpillar wheels up to very
considerable mobile forts, are still among the queerest objects in
the sheds of the vast war dumps which constitute the Aldershot
Museum.  They are fit peers for Admiral Fisher's equally belated
oil Dreadnoughts.

The British dream of the next definitive war seems to have involved
a torrent of this ironmongery tearing triumphantly across Europe.
In some magic way (too laborious to think out) these armoured Wurms
were to escape traps, gas poison belts, mines and gunfire.  There
were even "tanks" that were intended to go under water, and some
that could float.  Hansen even declared (see The Last War
Preparations, xxiv, 1076) that he had found (rejected) plans of
tanks to fly and burrow.  Most of these contrivances never went
into action.  That throws a flavour of genial absurdity over this
particular collection that is sadly lacking from most war museums.

The British and the French experts, and presently the Germans, also
worked very hard at the fighting aeroplane--the British and Germans
with the greatest success; the aerial torpedo, controllable at
immense distances, was perfected almost simultaneously by the
Italians and the Japanese.  The French mind, for all its native
brilliance, was hampered by its characteristic reluctance to scrap
old plant for new.  It was the German, American and Russian experts
who went furthest with the possibilities of chemical attack.  The
disarmament of Germany necessarily forced its military authorities
to concentrate on an arm that could be studied, experimented upon
and prepared unknown to the outer world, and the Russians were
forced to take up parallel enquiries because of their relative
industrial poverty.  The Germans had been first to use gas in the
Great War, and they remained for a long time the war gas pioneers.
But after the Great War much attention was given to this arm in
America through the influence of the chemical industry.  Biological
warfare, that is to say the distribution of infectious diseases,
was also extensively studied, America and the Central Europeans in
this case leading the way.

Even before the Central European fighting in 1940 and the
subsequent years, the distribution of various disease germs was no
longer a merely theoretical possibility.  Little containers, made
to look like fountain pens, were already being manufactured.  The
caps could be removed to expose soluble ends, and then they could
be dropped into reservoirs or running streams.  Glass bombs also
existed for use from aeroplanes, railway-train windows and so
forth, which would break on hitting water.  There are specimens in
the Aldershot Museum.  The enrolment and territorial organization
of medical men and trained assistants to inoculate threatened
populations went on with increasing vigour after 1932.

But there was a certain hesitation about the use of disease germs.
It is easy to distribute them but hard to limit their field of
action, and if prisoners (military or civilian) were still to be
taken and towns and territory occupied, a well launched pestilence
might conceivably recoil with deadly effect upon its users.
Bacterial warfare seemed, even to the specialists who studied it, a
very improbable method for any but an heroically vindictive
population in the hour of defeat.  Nevertheless it was thought best
to have it worked out.  Except for the distribution of malignant
influenza in Kan-su and Shensi by the Japanese during their efforts
to tranquillize North China in 1936, "without proceeding to
extremities", its use was never officially admitted.  Other alleged
instances of its deliberate employment by responsible Powers have
been shown by the researches of the Historical Bureau to have been
due either to the unauthorized zeal of subordinates or to the
activities of those religious fanatics who became so prevalent
during the period of confusion after 1945.  The acclimatization of
the mosquito transmitting yellow fever in India in 1950, which did
so much to diminish the population of that peninsula, has never
been explained.  It is generally supposed to have been accidental.

So far as method and invention went, what was called "Gas Warfare"
ran very parallel to bacterial warfare.  Its beginning and end is
now a closed chapter in the history of the human intelligence and
will.  It is surely one of the strangest.  It set its stamp upon
the clothing and urban architecture of the age.  It ranks in horror
with the story of judicial torture or the story of ritual
cannibalism, but its inhumanity is more striking because of its
nearness to our own times.  Like those older instances, it brings
home to us the supreme need for sound common general ideas to hold
together human activities.  It tells how thousands of clear and
active minds, each indisputably sane, could, in an atmosphere
obsessed by plausible false assumptions about patriotic duty and
honour, cooperate to produce a combined result fantastically futile
and cruel.

The people engaged in this business were, on the whole,
exceptionally grave, industrious and alert-minded.  Could they
revisit the world to-day individually we should probably find them
all respectable, companionable, intelligible persons.  Yet in the
aggregate they amounted to an organization of dangerous lunatics.
They inflicted dreadful deaths, hideous sufferings or tormented
lives upon, it is estimated, about a million of their fellow

Most of the lethal substances prepared for gas warfare purposes
have passed altogether out of general knowledge.  They are either
never manufactured now or they are produced upon rare occasions and
under proper control for the purposes of physiological research.
The old devices and appliances for their distribution seem,
nowadays, like grotesque anticipations of many of the features of
the large scale agricultural and hygienic operations that are
carried out to-day.  The treatment of locust swarms by air attack,
the spraying of the reafforested regions against various tree
diseases, the regular cleansing and stimulation of our grain and
root crops are all subsequent rationalizations of these practices
of the Age of Frustration.

Faber, that Calvinistic optimist, with his doctrine that the bad is
all to the good in this maddest of all conceivable worlds, thinks
that all these big scale methods were "enormously stimulated" by
the crazy inventiveness of the war period.  But then he has also
suggested that the aeroplane would not have come into general use
for many years without war stimulation.  We venture to think he
carries his doctrine of the attainment of wisdom through imbecility
too far.  It is really only a modernization of Charles Lamb's story
of the invention of the roast pig.  It had the touch of
Rasputinism, this revival of the ancient heresy that one must sin
THOROUGHLY before one can be saved.

Much more after the gas-war pattern were the campaigns (2033 and
2035) against rats and mice, that finally cleansed the world of the
lurking poison of that medieval terror, bubonic plague, and the
distributions of "festivity gas", that were permitted in various
regions in 2060.  The countervailing use of benign-gases as a
subsidiary to the suppression of the depressing cometary toxins of
2080 will also occur to the reader.  The oxygenation of council
chambers, factories, playing-fields and similar loci demanding
special brightness and activity, and the use of Padanath Tagore's
Lotus Gas in the Himalayan rest valleys, we may note, are also
claimed by Faber as part of the legacy of gas warfare.

One or two of the offensive substances actually manufactured for
war purposes are now utilized in relation to very special and
specially protected processes in our industrial plants.  The
preparation of some of them is a major felony.  They were a very
various miscellany, for every chemical possibility was ransacked to
find them.  Very few of them were actually gases.  Many were
volatile liquids or even finely divided solids, which were to be
sprayed or dusted over positions in enemy occupation.  Dr. Gertrud
Woker, in a paper on this subject contributed to an enquiry by the
Interparliamentary Union in 1931, gave a useful summary of the
existing state of knowledge at that time.  In conjunction with
various colleagues (What Would Be the Character of a New War?
Historical Documents 937,205), she allows us to form an estimate of
what was actually being contemplated by contemporary military
experts.  Except for one important exception, her list covers all
the main types of poison gas substances that were actually
prepared.  This spate of investigation culminated about 1938.  By
that time the entire field had been explored.  After that there
were improvements but no major innovations.

After 1940 even military research was restricted by the increasing
financial paralysis.  In 1960 no plants capable of producing
material for gas warfare on a sufficiently abundant scale were

Of gases actually tried out in the World War itself, the chief seem
to have been chlorine and various chlorine compounds (phosgene,
Green Cross gas, chloropicrin and so forth).  These attacked and
destroyed the lung tissue.  Chlorine was used by the Germans as
early as April 1915 at Ypres when 6,000 men were killed by it; it
was soon abandoned, because it was so immediately irritating that
its presence was detected at once, and precautionary measures could
be taken.  The other gases in this class got to work less frankly.
Presently the victim began to cough.  Then as the destruction of
the bronchioles and alveoli of the lungs went on he retched and
suffocated and coughed up blood and tissue.  He died amidst his
expectorations with a visage blue and bloated and bloodstained
froth on his lips.  If by good luck he survived, he survived with
his lungs so injured that he easily fell a victim to tuberculosis
or suchlike disease.  Most of this group of gases had their own
characteristic complications.  One series, for instance, would
attack the nervous system, causing wild excitement, terror,
convulsions, screams and paralysis.  Thousands of men had already
died in agony from Green Cross gas during the World War, and the
plans of some of these experts involved the massacre of whole
populations in the same atrocious fashion.  Green Cross gas was
used, but not in sufficient strength to be very deadly, in the
Polish bombing of Berlin in May 1940, and in a more concentrated
form in the aerial torpedoes that were sent from Germany to Warsaw.
It had been used also at Nankin in 1935 and in the Chinese reprisal
at Osaka.

Yellow Cross gas, or mustard gas, was much more insidious and also
more cruel and murderous.  It was not really a gas; it was a
volatile liquid.  When cold, it spread unsuspected in a thin film
over the ground, getting on to boots and clothing, being carried
hither and thither.  Slowly, as it vaporized, its presence was
revealed.  Discomfort came, a horrible suspicion, fear and then
coughing and retching.  It involved quite frightful and hopeless
suffering.  Steadily but surely it killed every living substance
with which it came into contact; it burnt it, blistered it, rotted
it away.  One part of mustard gas in five million of air was
sufficient to affect the lungs.  It ate into the skin, inflamed the
eyes; it turned the muscles into decaying tissue.  It became a
creeping disease of the body, enfeebling every function, choking,
suffocating.  It is doubtful if any of those affected by it were
ever completely cured.  Its maximum effect was rapid torture and
death; its minimum prolonged misery and an abbreviated life.  The
gases used in the fighting in North China in 1934-37 and in the
Chinese raids upon Japan were mostly of this group.  And an
evacuation of Berlin in 1946 was brought about by the threat of
Yellow Cross bombs.

[They were actually dropped, but either through accident or by the
insubordination of the chemists employed by the Poles, they smashed
ineffectively.  It was one of the most striking instances of what
appears to have been the pacificist sabotage that helped to end the
formal warfare in Central Europe.  Five of the chemical workers
concerned were shot and seventeen given long sentences of
imprisonment, but none of the records of their trial has survived.]

Allied rather than competing with these gases of the Green and
Yellow Cross categories, Dr. Woker cites the Blue Cross group.
These substances were essentially direct nervous irritants in the
form of an almost impalpable dust.  They could penetrate most of
the gas masks then in use, and produced such pain, so violent a
sneezing and nausea, and such a loss of self-control that the
victim would tear off his mask, so exposing himself to the Green or
Yellow vapours with which Blue Cross was usually associated.

All these torments had been extensively inflicted already during
the World War, but after its conclusion the secret activities of
the various poison gas departments were sustained with great
energy.  It took them nearly twenty years even to open up the main
possibilities of their speciality.  One substance, which played a
large part in the discussions of the time, was "Lewisite", the
discovery of a Professor Lewis of Chicago, which came too late for
actual use before the end of 1918.  This was one of a group or
arsenical compounds.  One part of it in ten millions of air was
sufficient to put a man out of action.  It was inodorous,
tasteless; you only knew you had it when it began to work upon you.
It blistered as much as mustard gas and produced a violent

Other war poisons followed upon this invention, still more deadly:
merciful poisons that killed instantly and cruel and creeping
poisons that implacably rotted the brain.  Some produced
convulsions and a knotting up of the muscles a hundred times more
violent than the once dreaded tetanus.  There is a horrible
suggestiveness in the description of the killing of a flock of
goats for experimental purposes in these researches:  "All
succumbed to the effect of the gas except three, which dashed their
brains out against the enclosure."  And to assist these chemicals
in their task of what Dr. Woker calls "mass murder" there was a
collateral research into incendiary substances and high explosives,
to shatter and burn any gas attack shelter to which a frightened
crowd might resort.

Dr. Woker's summary does not include Kovoet's invention of the
permanent Death Gas in 1934.  Its composition is still a secret and
its very complicated preparation a felony.  This compound, although
not absolutely permanent, decomposed with extreme slowness.  It was
in itself neither a gas nor a poison.  It was a heavy, rather
coarse-grained powder.  It evaporated as camphor does, and as it
evaporated it combined with oxygen to form a poison effective when
diluted with fifty million times its volume of air.  Its action was
essentially of the Lewisite type.  This was actually used in the
first Polish War to cut off East Prussia.  A zone of territory from
a mile to three miles wide along the whole frontier was evacuated
and dusted with Permanent Death Gas.  East Prussia became a
peninsula accessible only from Lithuania or by sea.  In spite of
the heaviness of the grains, the winds finally widened this band of
death to about fifteen miles in width and carried its lethal
influence into the suburbs of Danzig.

This murdered region was not re-entered, except by a few specially
masked explorers, until after 1960, and then it was found to be
littered with the remains not only of the human beings, cattle and
dogs who had strayed into it, but with the skeletons and scraps of
skin and feathers of millions of mice, rats, birds and suchlike
small creatures.  In some places they lay nearly a metre deep.  War
Pictures has two photographs of this strange deposit.  Vegetation
was not so completely destroyed; trees died and remained bare and
pickled; some grasses suffered, but others of the ranker sort
flourished, and great areas were covered by a carpet of dwarfed and
stunted corn-cockles and elecampane set in grey fluff.

A curious by-product of Permanent Death Gas is what is now known as
the Sterilizing Inhalation.  This was first made by accident.  A
Chinese Vindication Society organized an air raid on Osaka and
Tokio in 1935 after the great Green Cross raid on Nankin in that
year.  It was intended to strike terror into the Japanese mind.
Permanent Death Powder was to have been used, but because of the
haste and danger of the preparations the Chinese had not tested it
out, and here again, either by accident or design, things went
wrong; the formula, it seems, had been falsified.  Consequently,
when the raid was made--all the machines employed were brought down
on their way home--nothing ensued but a temporary fever accompanied
by retching and purging.

There was much derision of the unfortunate aviators in Japan.  It
was only some months after that the Western World learnt that the
medical services of both towns were reporting a complete cessation
of early pregnancies.  Not a litter of kittens or puppies had
appeared for weeks, mares were no longer foaling nor cows in calf.
Mice and rats vanished.  The sterilization in all cases was
permanent.  But birds were not affected for reasons that Crayford-
Huxley has since made clear.  The sparrows multiplied enormously
and the hens still clucked triumphantly in these childless cities.

In some way the Chinese chemists had blundered upon one of those
rare sub-radiant gases known as Pabst's Kinetogens, which affect
the genes.  A whole series of these are now known to biologists,
chiefly through the work of Pabst and his assistants, and most of
the more extraordinary flower sports and new aberrant animal types
in our experimental gardens are due to their employment; but for a
long time, until indeed Pabst took up the subject with an insight
all his own, only the Sterilization Inhalation was known.  Most of
the campaigns in the Forties of the twenty-first century against
contagious rodents made an extensive use of this gas wherever
regions could be isolated from human intrusion, and the day may not
be distant when it will have important eugenic applications.

But the Japanese experience produced even a greater sensation
throughout the world than the actual slaughter of the victims would
have occasioned.  The militarist class in Japan was as deeply
sentimental as the Western equivalent in Europe, and as resolute
that the common people should not only die but breed fresh battle
fodder for their country.  Until the patriots realized that the
Chinese supply of this stuff was limited, they lived in horror.
They saw themselves stripped bare of subject lives.  They saw
themselves extinct in the hour of victory.  There was a great
clamour about the world for the extensive application of this new
find during the fiercer war years; there are proposals on record
(Hate Eugenics, Historical Documents 5752890 and seq.) to apply it
from the air to Palestine, Arabia, Ireland, the whole of China and
the African Continent in part or as a whole.  But mankind was saved
from any such catastrophe by the fact that the first production of
Sterilizing Inhalation was essentially accidental.  It had been
prepared furtively, its makers were untraceable, and the proper
formula was not worked out and made controllable until our insane
world was well in the grip of the harsh humanity of the Air

How all these hideous devices of the New Warfare were to be brought
together to effect the definitive subjugation of the Will of a
belligerent Power was apparently never thought out, or, if it was,
the plans were kept so secret that now they have perished with
their makers.  After the millions had choked, after the cities were
a stench of dead bodies--what then?

Perhaps the artistic interest of the business precluded such remote
considerations.  All we can disentangle now of this gas warfare, as
its experts contemplated it, consists of projects of mere mischief
and torture.  They seem imbued with much the same wanton
destructiveness as that displayed by some of the younger specimens
among the Loando-Mobi chimpanzee hybrids.

Yet some of these plans are amazingly thorough up to a certain
point--up to the point when one asks, "But WHY?"  For instance, in
the Marine War Museum in the Torcello Lagoon there are no fewer
than half a dozen raider submarines built for four different great
Powers, and all specially designed as long-distance bases for gas
warfare.  They carried no guns nor ordinary fighting equipment.
They had practically unlimited cruising range, and within them from
five to nine aeroplanes were packed with a formidable supply of gas
bombs.  One of them carried thirty long-range air torpedoes with
all the necessary directional apparatus.  There were four different
types of gas mixture in the bombs, but they differed little in
character and efficiency.  The smallest of these raiders carried
enough of such stuff to "prepare" about eight hundred square miles
of territory.  Completely successful, it could have turned most of
the London or New York of that time, after some clamour and running
and writhing and choking, into a cityful of distorted corpses.
These vessels made London vulnerable from Japan, Tokio vulnerable
from Dublin; they abolished the last corners of safety in the

These six sinister monsters gleam now in the great gallery side by
side, their poison fangs drawn, their mission abandoned, the grim
vestiges, the uncontrovertible evidence of one nightmare among the
many nightmares of hate and evil that afflicted the human brain
during the Age of Frustration.  There they are.  Men made them--as
men made the instruments of torture during the previous dark ages.
Even amidst the happy confidence of our present life it is well
that we should remember that, given different conditions, men
technically as sane as ourselves could design and make these

There is something revolting in these details.  We have given
enough for our purpose.  History must not be made a feast of
horror.  From first to last gas warfare destroyed very painfully
between one and one and a quarter million lives that might have
been fruitful and happy.  That much mischief was done.  They
suffered and they have gone.  The gist of our story is that, after
the humiliation and quickening of the military mind by the
ineptitudes of the World War, belligerent science did not so much
progress as lose itself in the multiplicity of its own inventions.
It developed one frightful and monstrous contrivance after another,
to dismay and torment mankind, to spread ill health and hate, to
demoralize and destroy industrial life, to make whole countries
uninhabitable and loosen every band that held men together in
orderly societies, but it made no steps at all to any comprehensive
and decisive conduct of war.  With no plan for the future, with no
vision of the world as a whole at all, these thousands of furtive
specialists, these "damned ingenious patriots", as Isaac Burtonshaw
(1913-2003) called them, went on accumulating, here frightful
explosives, there stores of disgusting disease germs, and there
again stores of this or that fantastically murderous gas.

No comprehensive plan held any of these centres of evil together
into one premeditated whole, as, for instance, the military
preparations of the Hohenzollern Empire were held together by a
clear and deliberate scheme of conclusive warfare.  Beneath the
vulgar monarchist claptrap of the German effort of 1914 there was
indeed a real scheme for the reorganization and modernization of
civilization about a Teutonic nucleus according to Teutonic ideals.
It may have had its fatuous elements, but it was logical and
complete.  But war planning never recovered that completeness after
1914; never got back to the same logical foundations.  After that
belligerence lost its head.  It still went on as everything else
went on in those days--by inertia.  But it had no longer any idea
of what it was up to.

Yet over all the world these incoherent mines were prepared, and
they might well have exploded, had their release been simultaneous,
into such an outbreak of disorderly evil as staggers the
contemporary imagination.  It is conceivable that they might have
destroyed mankind.  It would have needed no change in the essential
conditions but only a rearrangement of the determining accidents to
have brought about that final catastrophe.

This menace of a chaos of disasters and aimless cruelties hung over
a disorganized and unprotected world for three-quarters of a
century.  It is what some historians call the Period of Maximum
Insecurity, from 1935 to 1965.  Here and there quite monstrous
things occurred--at Nankin, Pekin, Osaka, Berlin, Warsaw, for
instance; things terrible enough to hearten and steel the better
elements in humanity for the achievement of that world peace
towards which all these forces were urging it.  Fortunately for
mankind the two fundamental evils of traditionalism were just
sufficient to neutralize each other during this long period of the
incubation of the Modern State.  The greed of the creditor balanced
the greed of the armament dealer.  As armaments grew more and more
costly, the possible purchasers grew poorer and poorer.  If Economy
starved and hampered many good things in human life, it did at
least finally take all vigour and confidence out of the development
of the New Warfare.  The Chemical Armament industry followed the
other typical institutions of the old order into the general social
liquidation which wound up the bankruptcy of Private Profit

5.  The Fading Vision of a World Pax: Japan Reverts to Warfare

We have shown already how Parliamentary Democracy necessarily
abolished real leaders in public affairs and substituted a strange
type of pseudo-leader, men who were essentially RESULTANTS, who
made nothing, created no forces, met no emergencies, but simply
manoeuvred for position, prestige and the pettier rewards of power.
They followed the collapse of the decaying order without an effort
to arrest its decay.  Why indeed should they have made an effort?
They were representatives of the popular will, and if there was no
popular will . . .

We have already considered the behaviour of this amazingly
ineffective collection of men in face of the financial dislocation
that was choking the economic life of the race.  It is doubtful if
a single one of them ever gave a month's continuous study to the
plain realities of that situation.  And in the face of the
accumulating stresses created by the maladjustments of Versailles,
this galaxy of humbugs to whom democracy had entrusted the
direction of human beings--humbugs unavoidably, for the system
insisted upon it regardless of the best intentions--was equally
enigmatical and impotent.  Along the eastern frontiers of Italy and
Germany the open sores festered.  No one sought to heal them.  In
the Far East the conflict between Japan and China, failing a
European protest, became frankly a formal war.  Every world event
cried louder than the last for collective action, and there was no
collective action.  The League of Nations appointed commissions of
enquiry and produced often quite admirable analyses of hopeless

No one knew how to arrest the grim development of the situation.
The chief of states repeated the traditional gestures, as though
these were all that could be expected of them.  But the patterns of
history served them no more.  They found themselves like men who
attempt to gesticulate and find their limbs have changed to cloud
and rock.

Of all the "Powers" of that time the behaviour of Japan was the
most decisive.  In 1931 an internal revolution in that country had
put political power into the hands of a patriotic military group,
diplomatically unscrupulous and grossly sentimental according to
the distinctive Japanese tradition, and this coterie set itself now
with extraordinary energy and an equally extraordinary lack of
authentic vision to caricature the aggressive imperialisms of the
nineteenth-century Europeans.  The mind of this ruling group was
still intensely romantic, still obsessed by those ideas of national
dominance and glory which had passed already so fatally over the
intelligence of Christendom.  Their military initiatives were
quasi-Napoleonic, their diplomatic pretences and evasions modelled
on the best European precedents.  It was "Japan's turn" now.

The investigation of just what these Japanese Imperialists imagined
they were doing has greatly exercised our historical research
department.  But it is indeed only a special instance of the
general riddle of what any "Power", regarded as a mentality in
itself, imagined it was doing in that age.  Only a century and a
half has passed since those Japanese columns were marching into one
Chinese town after another, and today our psychologists confess
themselves baffled by an enterprise that was manifestly undertaken
by men like ourselves and yet had already assumed a quality of
absolute insanity.  Why did these very intelligent people behave in
that fashion?

The clue lies in the extraordinary ease with which distasteful
reality can be repressed by the human mind, and in the atmosphere
of grotesque but flattering illusions in which these people were
living.  Just as in the West the bankers, economic experts,
responsible statesmen would not realize the complete smash to which
their fiscal and financial methods were plainly heading until the
smash had actually come, so these Japanese militarists could not
see the inevitable consequences of their continental adventures.
They could not see behind them a miserable peasantry breeding
itself down to the basest subsistence; a miserable urban
proletariat deteriorating physically and morally; they could not
estimate the mutterings of revolt in all their sweated and driven
industrial centres; they could not understand the protests of their
own fine and growing intelligentzia.

Even the steady fall of the national credit abroad and the
increasing economic stresses of the land aroused no misgivings of
hallucination.  Japan in her headlong pursuit of Western precedents
was rapidly reproducing all the revolutionary conditions of the
West.  All that was lost upon her leaders.  The one thing they
could see clearly was that China was disorganized, that she was
struggling with great difficulty to discover a new method of
collective living to replace her ancient slack imperialism, and
that by all the rules of the international game this was Japan's
opportunity.  They thought that, in very much the same way that the
disorganization of the Empire of the Great Mogul had laid India
bare to the piratical enterprise of the Europeans and permitted the
establishment of the unstable aimless Indian Empire of the British,
so now Fate had invited them to an equally glorious opportunity, to
a parallel Japanese domination of the most or all of Asia.  Who
could tell where their imperial adventure would end--or whether it
would have an end?  The mirage of limitless power and glory opened
out before them, as it has opened out to all empire builders since
the world began.

They were reckoning without the New Warfare, reckoning without
modern industrialism, without the paradoxical self-destructiveness
of Private Capitalist enterprise, without Russia, without America,
without the superior mass, the traditional unity and mental
obduracy of the Chinese population.  They were thinking as a
Pomeranian Junker or a British general from that "hot-bed of
Imperialists", Ulster, might have thought before 1914.  It was an
archaic megalomania--that led to the killing of about three million
combatants, an extreme social disintegration in China, and the
final collapse of the Japanese monarchy.

In the special histories of this struggle, the student who needs or
desires the knowledge may find the detailed particulars of the
Japanese aggressions from 1931 onward which grew at last into the
formal invasion of China proper; the tentative of Shanghai, the
invasion of Manchuria and the establishment of the puppet kingdom
of Manchukuo (1932), the attack on Shanhaikwan which led to the
penetration of the Great Wall, the invasion of China Proper from
the north and the march on Pekin.  The operations up to that point
were largely on the pattern of the old warfare as it had been
practised up to 1914.  The Chinese were poorly equipped and had
little modern material; the Japanese found it unnecessary to make
any excessively expensive efforts to attain their objectives.

All this earlier fighting went on to an accompaniment of protests
from the quite powerless League of Nations at Geneva.  A "Lytton
Report" prepared by a commission of enquiry is to be found in the
Historical Documents Series (2067111).  But counterbalancing these
remonstrances were the ambiguous utterances of the British Foreign
Office, the support of the French armament industry and its Press,
the overt support of a great group of American banks and their
newspapers.  In view of these divisions, the Japanese militarists
had every reason to disregard Western criticism altogether.

In 1935 the Japanese occupied Pekin and Tientsin.  They set up a
second puppet monarchy in Pekin.  But they found very great
difficulty in holding the country, particularly to the south and
west of these centres.  Manchuria, Inner Mongolia and Shansi
remained seething with bandits and rebel bands, and the still
unoccupied valley of the Yang-tsze-kiang remained fighting with an
increasing unity under the leadership of the reorganized
Kuomintang.  In no part of China or Manchuria was it safe for a
Japanese to go about alone, and a rigorous economic boycott,
sustained by an omnipresent terrorism, continued.  The Kuomintang
was a directive association created by the great Chinese
revolutionary Sun Yat Sen, and it had gone through various
vicissitudes; it had a rough general resemblance to the Communist
Party and the various European fascisms, and, like them, it
sustained a core of conscious purpose throughout its community.  It
had no vital centre, no formal head; it was a thing of the mind,
unquenchable by military operations.  And under the stress of this
resistance it had become violently patriotic and xenophobic.

In 1936 Japan already had more than a million and a half men
scattered between the Manchurian frontier and Canton, where a third
landing had been made and still her hold upon China hardly extended
beyond the range of her guns and the glitter of her bayonets.  She
had bombed Nankin twice on an extensive scale, Pekin before its
surrender, and Wuchang and Hankow, with Yellow Cross bombs.
Hundreds of thousands of people had been slaughtered, but the great
invertebrate body of China seemed able to endure such losses with a
stoicism impossible in a more highly organized state.  In return
the "Vindication of China" Society astonished the world by suddenly
bombing and, through an error in the gas mixture, STERILIZING Osaka
and Tokio.

No one knew of these Chinese air forces until they appeared in
action.  The machines had come from Sweden by way of Russia.  But
nearly every Western country was supplying contraband of war to the
Chinese.  Unaccountable hostile aeroplanes with untraceable bombs
appeared in the sky and came humming over the sea to Japan.  Then
in 1935 a Japanese transport blew up and sank in the Gulf of Pe-
chih-li.  In 1936, three Japanese liners were destroyed by mines of
unknown origin within fifty miles of port.  War supplies of all
sorts got into China from Soviet Russia in the north and from the
French and British possessions in the south, and the help and
sympathy of America became more and more manifest as the vast
imperial ambitions of the Japanese leaders became unmistakable.
Western feeling had at first been acutely divided between distrust
of Japan and the desire to see China restored to order on
capitalist lines and saved from Communism.  But with every Japanese
advance European and American feeling veered back towards China.
Australia and New Zealand appealed to the Washington Government for
a joint guarantee to supplement the Imperial tie in 1937.  They
were advocating a mutual guarantee of all the Europeanized regions
of the Pacific.  For a time it seemed as though the Western world
might be guided to a sort of unity by the flares of Japan.  But the
unforgettable humiliations inflicted upon Central Europe after the
war still rankled sufficiently to prevent that.

Even before the launching of the definitive conquest of China there
had been considerable economic and social stress in Japan.  The
earlier successes, the easy capture of Pekin and the failure of an
adequate Chinese army to materialize, had filled the island empire
with patriotic enthusiasm and hope; the war was brought to a
victorious conclusion three times, and each time it broke out
again.  No invader ever conquered Russia to the end, and no one
ever completed the conquest of China.  Always beyond the subjugated
provinces appeared other provinces swarming with hostility.
Szechwan and the south supplied inexhaustible support and supplies
for the Kuomintang resistance.  It seemed at last as though there
could be no peace any more in China until the invaders fought their
way through to Tibet.

War weariness descended upon Nippon.  The peasants saw their sons
marching off, never to return, and shortages of ordinary
commodities deepened to famine.  There was already vigorous "Stop
the War" agitation in Japan in 1935; there were continual strikes
in Nagoya and hundreds of casualties, and afterwards there began a
frantic dumping of accumulated goods abroad, to pay not merely for
munitions but for such now vitally essential imports as Australian
meat and Canadian and American corn.  The war was starving the home
fields of men and it was destroying the productivity of large areas
of China.  The social structure of Japan proved to be far too
primitive to emulate the miracles of economy performed by the
Germans during the World War.  The confidence and credit of Japan
sank steadily.  Foreign loans became no longer possible even at
such exorbitant rates as 14 or 15 per cent.  And still there was no
end in sight.

The Japanese militarists had gone too far to recede.  Behind them
they had a suffering population that might rapidly become
vindictive, and about the arena of the struggle watched Russia,
America and Europe.  According to the best traditions of their
culture, these national leaders resolved on a supreme military
effort, a march in overwhelming force into the central province of
Hupeh.  Colossal preparations were made, and every able-bodied
Japanese who was not already enrolled was called up.  This was to
be "a blow at the heart".

A convergent march from Nankin, Shantung and Canton was planned.
This dispersal of the bases was justified by the necessity for
living on the country as far as that remained possible.  There were
railways in existence from Canton and Shantung, but they were
difficult to protect, and, apart from them, there was such an utter
want of practicable roads that by the time the Japanese were in
Hupeh a third of their forces were trailed out upon their lines of
communication making roads, and the equipment of heavy guns and
munitions they had been able to bring up was very little superior
to that of the Chinese, who were still fighting with all the wealth
of Szechwan at their backs and the almost overt sympathy of the
West.  The three great Japanese armies effected their junction in a
loose ring round Wuchang--a ring that was for a time slowly drawn
tighter and then ceased to contract.  A deadlock ensued, a deadlock
of mutual exhaustion.  Neither up nor down the river was the
closure of the ring complete.  Throughout 1938, Japan waited for
good news from the long crescents of trenches about Wuchang, and
waited in vain.  Pestilence broke out in July and defeated the
utmost sanitary and medical efforts of the invaders.  Then early
in 1939 they began their retreat to Nankin, with transport
disorganized, with mutiny growing, with all the country rising
about them.

The horrors of that retreat have never been fully told.  The three
Japanese armies at their maximum strength had numbered well over
two million of men; but probably about a million or less remained
fit enough for the retreat.  Famine was far more deadly with them
than the Chinese guerillas; the exhausted wretches fell out along
the line of march and waited stoically for the end; few prisoners
were taken; the Chinese had no food even if they had had mercy to
give quarter, and the fallen were left to perish in their own time.
The broken remnant that assembled at Nankin did not greatly exceed
a hundred thousand, and still smaller bodies from the lines of
communication fought their way homeward to the north and south.
The rest of these two million lay in the vast cemeteries of Puki
and Ki-chow, or they had been drowned in the floods, or their
bodies were littered as they had dropped and crawled over the sad
monotonous landscape of the Chinese hills.  At Nankin the weary and
dispirited survivors realized that Japan was now also at war with
the United States and that Osaka and Nagoya were in the hands of
Communist Committees.

For some weeks the Japanese army sprawled inactive in its former
cantonments to the west of Nankin.  Then it revolted, shot many of
its officers, declared for the social revolution and fraternized
with the Chinese Red Army which had marched in under its nose from
Hangchow and taken control of the city proper.

The entry of the United States into the Eastern War, which did so
much to complete the demoralization of militarist Japan, was the
climax of a prolonged wrangle about the supply of mines and
submarines to the Chinese, that became more and more acute after
the sinking of a Japanese transport in the gulf of Pe-chih-li.

It is only recently that the full history--which is also a very
tedious and disputatious history--of the sea war against Japan has
been worked out.  Every contemporary record was falsified at the
time; every event hidden completely or elaborately camouflaged.  It
is now fairly evident that not merely did private firms manufacture
mines and build submarine mine-layers but that the various European
navies under the plea of economy sold out a large proportion of
quite modern and valid under-sea craft for "breaking up" to agents
and dealers acting for South American intermediaries.  The
submarines, either intact or so "broken up" that they could easily
be reconstructed, went to various Peruvian and Chilian ports and
thence found their way across the Pacific to the Philippines.  The
Philippine Islands were quasi-independent, but the Manila
declaration of President Roosevelt II in 1937 had practically
extended to them the protection of the Monroe Doctrine, and the
Japanese had never had the surplus energy necessary to challenge
this informal protectorate.  Now these islands became the base for
vexatious attacks upon their overseas trade and sea communications.

The naval situation in the Pacific was a complicated one.  To the
east of the Philippines lie the Ladrones, a scattered group of
volcanic islands, of which the largest, Guam, had been assigned to
the United States of America by the Treaty of Versailles and was
administered as a part of the American navy, while the rest were
held by Japan under a mandate.  (The Powers previously in
possession had been first Spain and, after 1899, Germany.)  The
Japanese were bound by treaty not to fortify their holdings, but as
the situation grew tense they seem to have ignored this
restriction, at least to the extent of establishing submarine
bases.  Now that the situation was growing tenser the state of
affairs above and under water between the Ladrones, the Philippines
and the Asiatic mainland became darker and more dangerous.  There
was a threatening concentration of the American Fleet between Guam
and the Philippines to ensure the neutrality of the latter, a
patrolling concentration of the Japanese along the Chinese coast,
and an obscure activity of privateering submarines and ambiguous
shipping, which smuggled munitions and supplies and raided weak
points of the Japanese communications.

Above water a submarine, like any other ship, can fly a flag and
claim the respect due to its nationality, but mines fly no flags,
and under water a submarine may be able to recognize the coded
signals of a co-national but has no means at all of distinguishing
a neutral from an enemy.  Mistakes and pseudo-mistakes were
inevitable.  Two American submarines disappeared in 1936.  Then
several Japanese submarines vanished from the Ladrone archipelago.
Disputes that broke out in neutral cafés came to a murderous end in
the depths.  The American navy took matters into its own hands.  By
1937 an informal naval war had developed in the Western Pacific.

Neither Power hurried on to an actual declaration of war.  America,
in spite of, or perhaps because of, the bold experimenting of
Roosevelt II, was in a state of deepening economic and political
disorder, and Japan was putting forth her utmost strength for that
disastrous "blow at the heart" in China.  But many of the more
conservative influences in the United States saw in a Pacific war a
saving distraction of public attention and public energy.  There
was an agitation to re-annex the Philippines, and after the
Japanese failure to hold Wuchang the drive towards open war became

The particulars of the brief, destructive and indecisive naval war
that followed need not occupy us here.  The battle fleets met in
the Western Pacific and separated after two days of gunfire and
heavy losses.  Ammunition gave out, it seems, on the Japanese side.
At any rate they drew off in the twilight under a smokescreen.  The
Americans claimed the victory because they were able to go on to
Manila, while the Japanese withdrew to the protection of their
minefields and submarines and were never able to emerge again for
lack of material.  Both Powers were now in a state of deepening
domestic stress, and their war, in a technical sense, never ended.
That is to say, there was no final treaty as between two Powers,
because both had in effect collapsed.  They fell apart.  Social
revolution swept the conflict off the stage.

[The student will be reminded, by this inconclusive termination, of
the almost incessant, dreary and futile wars of Byzantine and
Sassanid, that devastated Asia Minor for three centuries and did
not so much come to an end as suffer effacement from history by the
sponge of Islam.]

The social disintegration of Japan, once it had begun, was very
rapid.  The great mass of the population, the peasants, had been
scarcely affected by the process of Westernization, and they lapsed
very readily into the same unprogressive variant of Communism as
their equivalents in Kwantung, Chekiang and Fukien had adopted.  A
small Westernized intelligentzia with many internal feuds and
doctrinal disputes struggled, not very effectively, in the larger
towns to turn this merely insurgent Communism into modern and
constructive paths after the Moscow pattern.  Fragmentation when it
came was swift and thorough.  Militarism degenerated into
brigandage and local feudalism.  Here and there some scion of the
old nobility reappeared with his attendant Samurai as a gangster

In the space of a few years all Asia from the Pacific to Persia
seemed to be sliding back to political and social chaos, to hand-
to-mouth cultivation, destitution and endemic pestilence.  For the
greater part of India and most of Further India were also now
drifting back to barbarism.  There also the phrases and the
insubordination, if not the spirit and methods, of Communism had
captured vast multitudes who had remained completely unaffected by
other European ideas.  It was Communism without any Five Year Plan
or indeed any conception of a plan.  It was the class-war in its
ultimate crudity.  It killed money-lenders and tax-collectors with
gusto and elaboration.  It evolved strange religious fanaticisms,
and it abandoned sanitation as "boujawai", the accursed thing.  The
imperial power in India was not overthrown; rather it was stripped
of effective prestige and receded to an immense distance.  The
princes remained formally "loyal", though in some cases they
tacitly annexed "disturbed districts" adjacent to their proper
dominions.  Localities and local adventurers improvised a sort of
social order at a low level and with a continually completer
disregard of any central authority.

6.  The Western Grip on Asia Relaxes

The recession of the directive influence of the half modernized
European imperialisms in Asia went on steadily.  Even as early as
1929 the spread of a peasant communism similar to that which had
obtained so strong a hold upon the popular imagination in China was
causing grave alarm to the Indian Government.  The seizure and
trial of a group of British and Indian agitators at Meerut, and the
extravagantly heavy sentences passed upon them in 1933, showed both
the gravity of these fears and the unintelligent clumsiness with
which the situation was being met.

For the British Empire there was to be no such decline and fall as
happened to Rome.  Instead it relaxed, as we shall now describe, to

Unhappily, before it relaxed in India it had, as in Ireland, a
brief convulsive phase of "firmness". . . .

[Here several sheets from Raven's MS. appear to be missing.]

7.  The Modern State and Germany

A question of primary importance in human history is this:  Why
were the lessons of the Great War, and the subsequent economic and
social disorders, lessons which seem to us to-day to be as starkly
plain as lessons could be--why were these lessons lost upon every
one of the great communities of thought into which the world was
divided?  British thought, French thought, American thought,
German, Russian, Italian thought, seem in our retrospect to ring
the changes upon every conceivable sequence of prejudice and
stupidity.  Why was Wilson's start towards world unification not
followed up?  Why after 1932 was there no vigour to reconstruct the
League of Nations, when all the world was crying for some central
authority to unify money and economic life?  Why did the Age of
Frustration last so long?  We have already noted some of the
controlling causes, the mercenary Press, the vast anti-social
private interests, the heavy weight of tradition, the reactionary
quality of schoolmasters, the social disintegration due to economic
demoralization.  But even these malignant influences, taken all
together, do not seem sufficient for this blindness in the general
intelligence of our race towards the obvious elements of its

Behind all these conditions making for failure there was
something else: there was an intrinsic weakness in the forces of
reconstruction, there was a fundamental lack.  It was impossible
for the world to get out of its difficulties because it had no
definite complete idea of what it wanted to get out to.  It had
ideas, yes, more than enough, but they were confused and often
mutually contradictory ideas.  A drowning man cannot save himself
by swimming unless he has something solid to which he can swim.
The deficiency was not moral nor material, it was intellectual.
There was the will for salvation and the material for salvation,
but there was no plan of salvation.  The world has no definition of
an objective.  That had still to be made plain to it.

It will make this matter clearer if we consider the mental and
emotional phases of one typical culture community of central
importance at that time, the German.  Stories similar in essence,
if widely different in detail, could be given of the French, Anglo-
Saxon, Russian and Spanish-speaking communities.  The feature they
had in common was this, a failure to realize that there could be no
salvation now unless it was a comprehensive salvation.  They were
attempting to do severally and with a jostling competitiveness what
could only be done with the utmost difficulty in unison.  That
meant for every one of them the paralysing influence of a war
threat, extreme economic instability, incapacity for dealing with
morbid financial conditions, and a consequent state of mental
"worry" that made every move inaccurate and untimely.

It is only when we realize the sapping of that aggressive energy
that had well-nigh Europeanized the whole world before the World
War that we can understand the length of the Age of Frustration.
Certain facts of fundamental importance to the continued health of
our world community have to be stressed.  Europe could not lead the
world to unity when the world seemed dying to be led to unity,
because Europe itself was profoundly disunited.  The World War was
merely the explosion of tensions that had been straining below the
surface throughout the whole First Period of World Prosperity.
Before the European peoples, who by 1920 amounted to a quarter of
the whole human race, could resume the exploring, experimenting and
civilizing rôle they had played for two centuries, it was necessary
that they should be purged of a chronic mental disease--a disease
which had, it seemed, to rise to an acute phase and run its
enfeebling and devastating course before it could be treated: the
disease of hate.

Although each year in the Thirties saw the international tension in
Europe increasing, it was only in 1940 that actual warfare broke
out.  All Europe was "mined" for ten years before that time, but
the very consciousness of that fact, if it did not hold back the
drift towards war, increased the gravity of its onset.  That
ingenious contrivance of President Wilson's, the Polish Corridor,
Poland's "access to the sea", was the particular mine that exploded
first.  But it was only one of a series of accumulating detonations
which were destined to blow the still creaking ineffective League
of Nations, and indeed nearly every vestige of the unfortunate
Treaty of Versailles and its subordinate "settlements", out of the
way of human readjustment.

The mental phases of that great body of Europeans who used the
German language summarize the world situation.  The history of
Europe from 1900 to 1950 could be told in a study of the German
brain alone, its torment and the reactions it evoked in the peoples
about it.  It was a brain of outstanding vigour and crudity.  It
aroused admiration, envy and fear.  Its achievements in material
science were magnificent; its energy of industrial organization was
unparalleled.  Its mathematical and psychological ineptitudes were
redeemed by the Jewish intelligences entangled in its meshes.
Compared with the Anglo-Saxon brain its political thought was
unsupple, and it had neither the extreme lucidity of the French
intelligence, the boldness of the Italian, nor the poetic power of
Spain and Russia.  It had these conspicuous limitations.  Its
obstinate association with a stupidly arrogant monarchism and a
woolly tangle of preposterous racial pretensions stood in the way
of sympathetic cooperation with any other cultural system.  It had
failed conspicuously to assimilate the non-German subject
populations involved in its political web.  It had intensified the
defensive nationalism of the French; its tactless challenge upon
the sea had terrified and exasperated the British; it had roused
even America to a wary disapproval and a final hostility.  Russia
it had never won, but then in the huge carcass of pre-revolutionary
Russia there was very little to be won anyhow.  (There was indeed
no real national self-consciousness in Russia before the Soviet
régime; there was only Dostoievsky and the Tzar.)  Assertive
ungraciousness had been the chief factor in Germany's isolation and
the cause of its defeat in the World War.

Yet after defeat this afflicted German mentality, if only on
account of a certain toughness and vigour it possessed, remained
still the central reality and the central perplexity of the
European system.  War and disaster could not alter the fact that
the backbone of Europe, the most skilled, industrious, teachable
and intelligent block of its population, spoke and thought German.
What might happen to it, what would happen to it, should have been
the primary preoccupation of every intelligent statesman.  For if
Germany had gone right everything would have gone right.  But there
were no statesmen sufficiently intelligent to consider anything of
the sort.  Germany had had a phase of pride and megalomania.  It
had been immensely disillusioned, it had thrown off its glittering
imperialist headship, it had accepted military defeat.  It had even
passed through a phase of humility.  At first it did not hate
conspicuously.  Amidst great difficulties the new republic
displayed creative courage, moderation, a dawning sense of the
significance of world politics.

Creative, forward-looking minds turned to Germany with an entirely
pathetic hopefulness.  "Now we shall see what Germany can do," they
said.  "Be patient with Germany."  All the world scolded France for
her inveterate distrust.  Given courage and generosity abroad and
leadership at home this great mass of Teutonic brains might have
taken up the task of the Modern State then, and fallen into
cooperation with the rest of a disillusioned but renascent world.
It might even have led in the work of reconstruction, and 1918
might have been the opening year of a phase of world renewal.

But that was not to be.  The world had still to reap a harvest of
disunion through sixty tragic years.  At home leadership came to
Germany too late.  Stresemann mastered his lesson too slowly and
died too soon.  Brüning was betrayed by Hindenburg's mental decay.
And abroad it seemed to the Germans that there was nothing but war-
strained and vindictive enemies.  They looked for friends and saw
only Foreign Offices.  We have told already how the rôle of only
sinner in a world of outraged saints was thrust upon Germany by the
Conference of Versailles.  She was to be permanently enfeebled,
restrained and humiliated.  German babies yet unborn were expected
to be born penitent about the war.  They were to gasp for their
first breath under the smacks of an unforgiving world.

How all the good effort in Germany was thwarted, how the nets of
suspicion held her down, would make a long and intricate story.  At
last these losers of the World War became as violent and frantic as
stifled creatures fighting for air.  Only by a feat of imagination
can we now put ourselves in their places.  Everything seemed to be
making for the strangulation of Central Europe.  The young
energetic men in the defeated countries were to be given no share
in the rebuilding of their shattered world.  That was to be
reserved for the new generation of the conquerors.  They were to
live in an atmosphere of punishment, toiling, heavily taxed, and
outlawed from the advancement of civilization to the very end of
their days.  That they should recover prosperity or achieve great
things would be an offence.

Naturally life so circumscribed was bitter and lapsed very easily
towards vice, apathy or blind revolt.  There is a remarkable novel
in the Historical Documents Series (Fabian, by Erich Kastner, 1932)
which renders the individual aspect of this phase of German life
very vividly.  Another novel almost equally vivid and illuminating
is Kleiner Mann, was nun? by Hans Fallada, 1932.

These conditions of mind, this tied and stifled outlook upon life,
were, it must be admitted, by no means confined to the German-
speaking peoples.  The intelligent and ambitious young Indian or
Egyptian or negro, the intelligent young man of any subordinated,
handicapped and restrained people or class--and this covered
perhaps two-thirds of the youth of our race in these days--
participated in the same distress of a foreordained inferiority and
futility.  But the young German had recent memories of hope and
pride and a greater fund of resentment and aggressive energy.  He
had no tradition of inferiority and subservient adjustment.

Unhappily no teachers or leaders arose to point him on to his
legitimate rôle in the replacement of the current disorder by the
Modern World State.  The Hohenzollern régime and the stresses of
the war had stood in the way of his attaining anything like the
cosmopolitanism of, say, the English and Americans.  His new
republicanism was superficial and half-hearted, and in the schools
and universities the teachers and leaders of the old militarist
régime were still living, active and malignant.  The Press and all
the organizations of instruction and suggestion stood out of the
revolution and showed themselves only too eager and skilful in
restoring a pre-war fierceness.  The futility of the new Germany
was their text.  "This is not German" they insisted.  "Go back to
the old Imperialism," they said, "and try again."  The spirit of
the women about the new generation, mothers and sweethearts alike,
was for the most part one of passionate indignation.

An acute contemporary observer, L. B. Namier, pointed out that it
was almost a law in history that war-strained and defeated
countries should relapse towards violent patriotism between twelve
and fifteen years after the war in which they suffered concluded.
He suggested that this was precisely the time when the children
who, without any participation in the realities of warfare, had
felt all the strain and bitterness of defeat and all the hatred of
the enemy would have grown up to manhood.  These children became
the energetic stratum in the population by 1933.

It was at this phase in European history that the rise of Hitlerism
occurred.  Adolf Hitler, as the decisive product of Germany in
labour, is one of the most incredible figures in the whole of
history.  He must have astonished even the teachers and writers who
had evoked him.  We can study his personal presence from a hundred
different angles in Vol. 30112 of the Historical Portrait Gallery,
and it is that of an entirely commonplace man, void of dignity,
void of fine quality.  We can hear his voice, we can hear him
persuading, exhorting and attempting to reason from the numerous
steel-tape records that were made of his speeches.  It is a
raucous, strained voice, talking violently but incoherently.  It is
the voice of a vulgar, limited, illiterate man, lashing himself to
fierceness, shouting, threatening, beating his fists at the window,
smashing the furniture about him, to escape from perplexity and
despair.  He was perfectly simple and honest in his quality.  And
that was perhaps the secret of his career.  He gave vent to the
German overstrain.  He is the voice of Germany losing control.

He denounced foreigners, Jews, Cosmopolitans, Communists,
Republicans, owners of property and leaders in finance with raucous
impartiality, and nothing is so pleasing to perplexed unhappy
people as the denunciation of others.  Not their fault, their
troubles.  They have been betrayed.  To Fallada's question, "Little
Man, what now?" his answer was, "Massacre Jews, expel foreigners,
arm and get more arms, be German, utterly German, and increase and

One has to remember that he never carried with him even an absolute
voting majority of the German public.  But the people permitted him
to seize power and shatter their republic, stifle public discussion
and destroy their liberties.  They had no energy to resist him.
They had no conception left in their fagged and hope-starved brains
of any finer rôle than that which his bawling nationalism, his
violent campaign against Communists and imaginary Communistic
plots, against Jews, speculators and Liberals, presented to them.
The treason of the senile Hindenburg to the Republic that had
trusted him, conduced inestimably to the adventurer's success.

Hitler's exploit in seizing Germany and turning it back towards
reaction was modelled on Mussolini's precedent.  But intellectually
he was far inferior to that strange figure.  He took all that was
worst in the Fascist régime and never rose to the real constructive
effort or the competent industry of his prototype.  One little
point that illustrates his general ignorance and essential feeble-
mindedness was the adoption of the Swastika, the running cross, as
the emblem of his Nazis.  This brisk, silly little sign is of very
old origin, and, as we have noted in the earlier stages of this
summary of history, its ornamental use was one of the associated
characteristics of that type of Neolithic culture, that culture of
brownish and dark-white warm-water peoples, from which the early
civilizations sprang.  It is hardly known in connexion with the so-
called "Nordics" or with the negro peoples, and it is in no way
expressive of an "Aryan" culture.  Old writers used to declare it
was the "symbol" of the sun, but it seems to have signified little
beyond a certain cheerfulness.  It took the place of an idea in the
muddled heads of the Nazis and they treated it with immense
solemnity and wore it on their banners, clothes, proclamations and
wherever else they could.  Arden Essenden, when it was revived in
Europe during the struggle for the air control, called it the
"idiot's own trade mark", and it has certainly had a fatal
attraction for many second-rate imaginative types.

So for a time, under a hubbub of young blackguards in brown shirts
and Swastika badges, Germany, just when her rather heavy but
persistent and faithful mind would have been of primary value in
mankind's struggle with the world problem, passed out of the
intellectual commonweal of mankind.  Her real mind went into exile,
in America, in England, in Switzerland, in irony or in hiding.
She missed her proper share in the unification of mankind in
the twentieth century, just as she missed her share in the
Europeanization of the world in the eighteenth and nineteenth.  At
home this National Socialism sought destructively to construct,
sought to restore her former scientific prestige and industrial
efficiency by boasting, exhortation, intolerance, outrage and
compulsion.  It was a pitiful and tragic phase, the dementia of a
great nation.  The story of German life during this interval is a
rowdy and unhappy story--a story of faction fights and street
encounters, demonstrations and counter-demonstrations, of a
complicating tyranny of blackmailing officials, and at last of an
ill managed and unsuccessful war, that belied the innate
orderliness of the Teutonic peoples.  There was a progressive
increase of secret vice and furtive dishonesty, the outcome of
hopelessness.  The number of people killed or seriously injured in
riots and civil conflicts in Germany, or murdered for political
reasons, between 1932 and 1936 amounted to something over rather
than under thirty thousand.

8.  A Note on Hate and Cruelty

[This section was in a detached fascicle, but its place seems to be

The student of history will find it almost impossible to understand
the peculiar difficulties of political life as it was lived until
about a hundred years ago, nor will he grasp the essential
differences between what was called education in those days and the
educational processes we are still developing to-day, unless he
masters the broad facts about these systems of hatred that
dominated the group relationships of mankind right up to the
assertion of the Modern State.  We have given the main particulars
of the issue between the Germans and the Poles, but that is only
one striking and historically important instance of a general
condition.  We could give fifty such chapters.  Nearly everywhere
populations were to be found steeped in and moved by mass hatreds
of a volume and obduracy outside any contemporary human experience.

All these hatreds arose out of the same essential causes.  Two or
more population groups, each with its own special narrow and
inadaptable culture and usually with a distinctive language or
dialect, had been by the change of scale in human affairs jammed
together or imposed one upon another.  A sort of social dementia
ensued.  In the absence of a common idea of community, civilized
motives gave place to instinctive hostilities and spasmodic

Wherever there were mingled populations these hates were found and,
except in the Basque country, Wales and Lapland, they were intense
enough to be of primary political importance.  South and east of
Bohemia there seemed no boundary to the realms of hate.  The Magyar
hated the Slav, the Slav the Italian, the Roumanian the Russian.
Religious differences, the mischief of priests, cut up even racial
solidarities; the Catholic Slav hated the Orthodox Slav and the
Orthodox Greeks in Macedonia were hopelessly divided among
themselves.  Over all the ancient domain of the Sultan, through
Persia, through India, hates extended.  Islam was rent by two
ancient hate systems.  These mass hatreds were accepted in a kind
of despair by even the wisest.  They defied the policies of
statesmen absolutely.  They were supposed to be beyond human

It is extraordinary how recent is the intelligent mitigation and
suppression of hatred.  Our ancestors did not envisage this as a
controllable mental disease.  They did not know that it was
possible to get through life without hatred, just as they did not
know that the coughs and colds that afflicted them and most of the
phenomena of senility were avoidable.

But it is amazing to think how submissively human beings allowed
their lives to be spoilt by controllable things--until almost
within living memory.  It was not only against hate and envy that
they made no effort.  They left their poor nerves bare and
unprotected from an endless persecution by man-made afflictions.
Up to 2010 they lived in towns that were crazy with noise; there
was practically no control of offensive sounds, and the visual
clamour of advertisements died out only in the needy decades that
preceded the Air Dictatorship.  But then it was still hardly more
than a century that there had been sufficient light upon the towns
and highways to drive away the blackness of night and overcast
weather.  In northern climates in the winter before the twentieth
century people lived between the nocturnal dark and a dismal grey
half-light which they called daylight, not seeing the sun often for
weeks together.

And before the nineteenth century it is clear to anyone who can
read between the lines that mankind STANK.  One has only to study
the layout and drainage of their houses and towns, their
accommodation for washing, their exiguous wardrobes, the absence of
proper laundry organization and of destructors for outworn objects,
to realize that only usage saved them from a perpetual disgust and
nausea.  No wonder that, quite apart from their bad food and
loathsome cooking, they coughed, spat, ached, went deaf and blind
and feeble, in a continual alternation of lassitude and mutual

These conditions of life have gone one after another and almost
imperceptibly.  Few of us realize how different it was to be a
human being only a few hundred years ago.  It is only when we take
our imaginations with us back into the past that we realize how
evil to nose, eye, ear and soul the congregation of human beings
could be.  And necessarily, inevitably, because of the ill-
interpreted protests of body and mind against this mode of
existence, they hated--almost at haphazard.  We have in Swift's
Gulliver's Travels (1726) the cry of one man of exceptional
intelligence and sensibility who discovered himself imprisoned as
it were in the life of the eighteenth century and could find
neither outlet nor opiate.  The reek of the kennels of a medieval
town was nothing to the stench of hatred in the popular Press of
the twentieth century.  The ordinary newspaper of that time was not
so much a news sheet as a poison rag.  Every morning the common man
took in fresh suggestions of suspicion and resentment and gratified
his spite with bad news and malicious gossip.

Hatred, we know, is a morbid, infectious and preventable relapse to
which the mammalian cerebrum, and particularly the cerebrum of the
social types, is prone.  It is a loss of rational control.  It is
caused normally by small repeated irritations of the cerebral
cortex.  The contagion may occur at any phase before or after
maturity, and acute attacks predispose the brain for recurrence and
may run together at last into a chronic condition of vindictive

Once hatred has established itself to that extent it seems to be
ineradicable.  The patient seeks, often with the greatest
ingenuity, occasion for offence, and finds a profound satisfaction
in the nursing of resentment and the search for reprisals and
revenges.  He has what he calls his "proper pride".  He disapproves
of his fellow creatures and grudges them happiness.  Our current
education is framed very largely to avert and anticipate this
facile contagion, but the Press of that time subsisted by its
dissemination, in the interests of reactionary forces.  We are as
sedulous now for cleanliness and ventilation in our mental as in
our physical atmosphere.  The contrast between a contemporary crowd
and the crowds depicted by Hogarth or Raphael is not simply in the
well-clad, well-grown, well-nourished and well-exercised bodies,
the absence of rags and cripples, but in the candid interested
faces that replace the introverted, suspicious and guarded
expressions of those unhappy times.  It is only in the light of
this universal malaria that human history can be made comprehensible.

And now this great German mind stretching across the centre of
Europe in seventy million brains was incapable of autotherapy, and
let its sickness have its way with it.  It would not recognize that
it suffered from anything but a noble resentment.  Least of all
peoples was it able to entertain those ideas of a world-wide
cooperation of the World-State, which were still seeking their
proper form and instrument.  It was a deeper hate altogether than
the fear-begotten hate of the French.  In both these antagonized
countries cosmopolitan sanity went begging, but most so in Germany.

The fluctuations in German hatred during the Thirties were
curiously affected by subconscious currents of discretion.  Though
Germany was fiercely belligerent in spirit, her armament still
lagged behind that of her neighbours; her Hitlerites snarled and
threatened, but rather against Poland than France, and when the
tension became too great it found relief by outrages upon
Communists, Pacificists and intellectuals and by an exacerbated
persecution of those whipping-boys of the Western civilization, the
Jews.  From the accession of Hitler to the chancellorship of the
Reich in 1933 onward, not only looting and massacre, but legalized
outrage, became an ever present menace in the life of the German

Faber speaks in his studies of political psychology of the "hate
map" of the world.  The intensity of the colouring of such a map
would vary widely.  The English-speaking states (except for
Ireland, that erstwhile "island of evergreen malice", which is now
the most delightful and welcoming of summer resorts) and the
Spanish-speaking communities felt hate far less intensely than the
peoples of the continental European patchwork.  They were less
congested, they were free from acute alien interference, they had
more space to move about in, and the infection was not so virulent.
For two decades Spain and Spanish South America (after the Peruvian
Settlement) sustained indeed a more liberal and creative mentality
than any other region of the world.  The Spanish contribution,
beginning with Unamuno and Ortega y Gasset and going onward through
a long list of great names, was of increasing importance in the
building up of the Modern World-State.

Russia, we may note, was never so constructive mentally as Spain.
She had not now the same wealth of freely thinking and writing men.
She had no surplus of mental energy to philosophize.  She
ecstasized, prophesied or dogmatized.  Such brain discipline as she
had was used up in her sprawling technical efforts.  But she again
was not a malignant country.  Young Russia was taught to hate
indeed, but to hate a dissolving enemy, the Wicked Imperialist.
Even in that hate there was an element of humorous caricature.
When in due course the Wicked Imperialist faded away to the quality
of a nursery Ogre, he took with him most of the hatred out of
Russia.  Hate, except in brief vivid spurts, does not seem
congenial to the Russian temperament.

Few people in 1940 realized that the essential political trouble in
the world, as distinguished from its monetary malaise, was this
endemic disease, and still fewer had the boldness of mind even to
think of the drastic cleansing and destruction of infected social
institutions and economic interests and accumulations that was
needed if the disease was ever to be stamped out.  Meanwhile along
the tangled frontiers of Central and Eastern Europe the sores
festered and the inflammation increased.

Among the more frequent methods of releasing hatred in the more
troubled communities were aggressive demonstrations inviting or
involving violence, attacks on representative buildings, such as
embassies and consulates, the defilement of flags, statues and
other symbols (in India the slaughter of sacred or forbidden
animals such as cows or pigs in holy places), quarrels picked in
cafés and restaurants, beatings-up, assassinations, the throwing of
bombs and crackers into parties and gatherings of the objectionable
nationality, or into law courts, religious buildings and other
unsuitable places for an explosion, firing at sentinels and across
boundaries.  Along the Adriatic coast it would appear there was an
exceptionally strong disposition to insult the characteristic
Italian respect for statues and pictures.

This was of recent origin.  At the Congress of Versailles Italy had
been bilked by her French and British Allies of a considerable
amount of the Dalmatian coast-line--to which indeed neither she nor
they had any right, but which nevertheless had been promised to her
in the secret engagements that had brought her into the World War.
Her patriots had never ceased to resent this broken promise, nor
the Jugo-Slav peoples, who held the coveted districts, to fear a
forcible annexation.  There had been much propaganda about the
dispute.  One prominent argument on the Italian side was that the
Republic of Venice (of which Rome was the natural heir) had
formerly dominated this coast, and, in proof of this, appeal was
made to the public buildings in the towns of the disputed regions,
which everywhere bore the insignia of their Italian founders and
particularly the distinctive lion of Venice.  For that was the
Fascist fantasy: wherever the Venetian lion had made its lair or
the Roman eagles cast their shadows, from Hadrian's Wall in England
to Mesopotamia, the Fascisti claimed to rule.

This contention, though taken calmly enough by the English, French,
Spanish, Turks and other emancipated peoples, was bitterly resented
by the populations more immediately threatened, and particularly
did it arouse resentment and hatred along the Dalmatian coast.  For
the young and excitable Slav, those sculptured lions and archaic
eagles, those antique vestiges, were robbed of their artistic and
historical charm; they took on an arrogant contemporary quality and
seemed to demand an answer to their challenge.  His response was to
deface or mutilate them.

Already in 1932 there were bitter recriminations between Rome and
Belgrade on this score, and in 1935 and again in 1937 fresh trouble
arose.  The later occasions were not simply matters of chipping and
breaking.  These heraldic and highly symbolic animals were now
painted, and painted in such a manner as to bring them into grave
contempt.  And the outrages were not confined to heraldic animals.
Portraits and images of Mussolini were also adorned all too often
with pencilled moustaches, formidable whiskers, a red nose and
other perversions of his vigorous personality.

Such vexatious modes of expression were in constant evidence in
all the inflamed areas.  To us they seem trivial, imbecile,
preposterous, but then they were steeped in tragic possibility.

The reader must picture for himself, if he can, how things went in
the brain of some youngster growing to manhood in one of these hate
regions, the constant irritation of restrictions, the constant urge
to do some vivid expressive thing, the bitter, unconsoling mockery
against the oppressor, and at last the pitiful conspiracy, the
still more pitiful insult.  He must think of the poor excitement of
getting the paint-pot and the ladder, of watching the receding
police patrol, the tremulous triumph of smearing the hated object.
That perhaps was the poor crown of life for that particular brain.
Then the alarm, the conflict, the flight, a shot, a wound, straw
and filth in a prison cell, the beatings and the formal punishment,
the intensified resolve to carry on the resistance.  There was
nothing to think of then but the next outrage, the next riot.  So
very often the story went on to wounds and death, the body crumpled
up on a street pavement and trampled under foot or put against a
wall to be shot, and then the rotting away and dispersal of that
particular human brain with all the gifts and powers it possessed.
That was all that life could be for hundreds of thousands of those
hate-drenched brains.  For that they came into being, like flowers
that open in a rain of filth.

A Natural History of Cruelty has recently been published by Otto
Jaspers (2085--), a lineal descendant of that Professor Jaspers of
Heidelberg University under whom De Windt studied and to whose Die
geistiger Situation der Gegenwart De Windt was greatly indebted.
Cruelty in the Twentieth Century is treated in considerable detail,
and it makes very terrible reading indeed.  Happily it is not
considered a necessary part of a general education to probe under
those dark processes of the human mind which make the infliction of
horrible pain and injuries a relief to otherwise intolerable mental
distresses.  The psychologist, however, must acquaint himself with
all those facts; he cannot fully understand our intricate minds
without them, and the practical disappearance of deliberate cruelty
from our world to-day makes the horror literature of the World War
and World Slump periods a mine of essential material for his
investigations.  One or two glimpses we have given the student.  If
he has any imagination he will be able to expand those hints for
himself into an infinitude of mutilations, tortures and wanton

The older psychologists were disposed to classify cruelty as a form
of sexual aberration--in ordinary speech we still use their old
word Sadistic--but this attribution is no longer respected by
contemporary authorities.  Cruelty goes far beyond the sexual
field.  Just as hate is now understood to be a combative fear
compound, the stiffening up of a faltering challenge, which may
become infectious, so cruelty is regarded as a natural development
of effort against resistance, so soon as the apprehension of
frustration exceeds a certain limit.  It is a transformation of our
attempt to subdue something, usually a living thing, to our will,
under the exasperation of actual or anticipated obduracy.

This interpretation makes it plain why the breakdown of the private
capital economic and political system and the world-wide
uncertainty, dismay and want which ensued was followed by wave
after wave of unprecedented cruelty.  In 1900, a visitor from
another sphere might reasonably have decided that man, as one met
him in Europe or America, was a kindly, merciful and generous
creature.  In 1940 he might have decided, with an equal show of
justice, that this creature was diabolically malignant.  And yet it
was the same creature, under different conditions of stress.

There were many thousands of suicides between 1930 and 1940--
suicides of sensitive men and women, who could endure the dreadful
baseness and cruelty of life no longer.  Yet in the records of the
reviving world of 1980 there is scarcely a mention of atrocious
conduct towards human beings or animals.  It was not a change of
nature; it was a change of phase.  Millions of people who had
actually killed, massacred, tortured, were still alive--and they
were behaving now quite reasonably and well.  Most of them had
forgotten their own deeds more or less completely.  Hope had
returned to human life.  The frantic years were past.

9.  The Last War Cyclone, 1940-50

The drift to war in Europe became more powerful with the
elimination of Japan and the United States from the possibility of
intervention, and with the deepening preoccupation of Britain with
Indian disorder and with the Black Revolt in South Africa.  The
last restraints upon continental hatreds had gone.  The issues

War came at last in 1940.  The particular incident that led to
actual warfare in Europe was due to a Polish commercial traveller,
a Pole of Jewish origin, who was so ill advised as to have trouble
with an ill-fitting dental plate during the halt of his train in
Danzig.  He seems to have got this plate jammed in such a fashion
that he had to open his mouth wide and use both hands to struggle
with it, and out of deference to his fellow passengers he turned
his face to the window during these efforts at readjustment.  He
was a black-bearded man with a long and prominent nose, and no
doubt the effect of his contortions was unpleasing.  Little did he
realize that his clumsy hands were to release the dogs of war from
the Pyrenees to Siberia.

The primary irritant seems to have been either an orange-pip or a
small fragment of walnut.

Unhappily, a young Nazi was standing on the platform outside and
construed the unfortunate man's facial disarrangement into a
hostile comment upon his uniform.  For many of these youths were of
an extreme innate sensibility.  The flames of patriotic indignation
shot up in his heart.  He called up three fellow guards and two
policemen--for like the Italian Fascisti these young heroes rarely
acted alone--and boarded the train in a swift and exemplary mood.
There was a furious altercation, rendered more difficult by the
facts that the offending Pole knew little or no German and was
still in effect gagged.  Two fellow travellers, however, came to
his help, others became involved, vociferation gave place to
pushing and punching, and the Nazis, outnumbered, were put off the

Whereupon the young man who had started all the trouble,
exasperated, heated and dishevelled, and seeing that now altogether
intolerable Jew still making unsatisfactory passes with his hands
and face at the window, drew a revolver and shot him dead.  Other
weapons flashed into action, and the miniature battle was brought
to an end only by the engine-driver drawing his train out of the
station.  The matter was complicated politically by the fact that
the exact status of the Danzig police was still in dispute and that
the Nazis had no legal authority upon the Danzig platform.

By itself this distressing incident might have been arranged
without the outbreak of a European war.  The moribund League of
Nations might have been invoked or even the mummified Hague
Tribunal galvanized into activity; either institution was still
fully capable of dealing with, let us say, a Polish dentist who
might have been treated as the culpable party, traced, punished and
made the scapegoat of Europe.  But that would have needed a certain
goodwill on the part of the Powers directly involved, and at that
time no such goodwill was forthcoming.

For eight years now the German mind had been working up for a fight
over the Corridor, and the rearmament of Germany, overt and secret,
had been going on.  Both France and Poland had been watching the
military recovery of Germany with ever-deepening apprehension, and
the military authorities of both countries were urgent that a blow
should be struck while they were still disproportionately stronger.
Time after time it seemed that the crisis had come, and time after
time nothing more than a stock-exchange tornado had occurred.  Now
the last reasons for patience had disappeared.  The tension had
risen to a point at which disaster seemed like relief and Europe
was free to tear itself to fragments.

Such a situation was the inevitable climax to every "armed peace"
in the old belligerent world.  At some point there was an
irresistible logic in "Strike now before they get too strong".
That had been an underlying motive of primary force in the British
readiness to fight in 1914.  They were eager to strike before the
ever-growing German fleet equalled their own.  So they ended an
intolerable tension.  The Germans had "asked for it", they said.
"Better now than to-morrow."

Now again Germany has "asked for it" and Poland was leaping to the
occasion.  The War Offices pressed their bell buttons.  The
printing machines of Paris, London and New York were still busy
with various misstatements about the murdered commercial traveller,
while the Polish and German air patrols were in conflict all along
the fatal boundary.  That dental plate apparently began to feel
uncomfortable about one o'clock in the afternoon of Friday, January
4th, 1940.  On Saturday, about three o'clock in the afternoon,
Michael Koreniovsky, the Polish ace, after a brilliant fight with
three antagonists, fell flaming out of the sky into the crowded
Langgasse of Danzig and set fire to the Rathaus.

The first Polish air raid on Berlin and the unresisted "demonstration
flight" of two hundred French air squadrons in formation over
Bavaria and West Prussia followed.  The Germans seem to have been
taken completely by surprise by this display of immense and
immediate preparedness.  They had not thought it of the French.  But
they had the quickness of apprehension to decline an air battle
against odds, and the French flew home again.  The fighting on the
Polish-German frontier continued.

The authorities in Paris were uncertain whether they were
disappointed or relieved by the non-resistance of their old
enemies.  A smashing air victory over Germany would have been very
satisfactory and conclusive, but these aeroplanes were also wanted
at home to cow the ever-increasing domestic discontent.  An
indecisive battle--and that was always possible in the air--might
have produced serious internal stresses.

For a week of years from the resumption of armament by Germany in
1933, the diplomatic centres of the world had been watching the
steady onset of this conflict and had been doing nothing to avert
it.  Now London, Washington, Madrid and Geneva became hysterically
active.  There was a mighty running to and fro of ambassadors and
foreign ministers.  "Delay," said Geneva; though there had already
been twenty years of delay.

"Localize the conflict" was a phrase that leapt into vivid
prominence.  It found favour not only in the neutral countries, but
in Paris and Berlin.  In effect "localize the conflict" meant this:
it meant that Paris should scrap her engagements to Poland and
leave the Poles to make what sort of arrangements they could
between Germany and Russia.  For Russia now, by an enigmatical
silence combined with a prompt mobilization of the Red Army, became
almost immediately an important piece in the developing
international game.

And Paris had soon very excellent reasons for not pushing a
conflict with Berlin to extremities.  The first Frenchman to be
killed in the New Warfare had been killed already.  And he had been
killed in the Maritime Alps, shot by the bullet of an Italian

On Sunday night, January the 6th, while the Polish aeroplanes were
dropping gas bombs on Berlin, the Italians were administering the
same treatment to Belgrade.  At the same time an identical note had
been dispatched from Rome to all the Powers giving Italy's reasons
for this decisive blow.  It seemed that between Friday evening and
Sunday morning there had been a violent recrudescence of Yugo-Slav
irreverence.  The Fascist agents who had to supply the material for
grievance and indignation had in fact overdone their task to the
pitch of caricature.  On Saturday the entire Italian population
found itself roused from its normal preoccupation with its daily
budget by the terrible intelligence of Mussolini everywhere made
bibulous and ophthalmious with red paint, of Venetian lions
coloured as indelicately as baboons and of shamefully overdecorated
Roman eagles.  Eloquent and dishevelled young Fascists, often in
tears, protested at every street corner against these intolerable
indignities and called for war.  The cup of Yugo-Slav iniquity was
full.  It was only in later years that astounded students, tracing
these outrages to their sources, realized how excessively that cup
had been filled to justify the Fascist invasion.

Once the Polish and Italian forces had crossed their boundaries the
other states of Eastern Europe did not wait even to produce an
insult before launching their offensives.  The whole crazy
patchwork of Versailles dissolved into fighting--the joyless,
frantic fighting of peoples full of hate and fear, led blindly to
no ends that anyone could foresee.  For two straining years the
theory of localizing the conflict held Russia and France out of the
fight.  A "formula" was found by which France undertook not to
intervene on the side of her erstwhile allies, on the understanding
that Russia by way of compensation also refrained from any action
against them.  Moreover, the trade in munitions was to be carried
on "impartially".  It was a flimsy formula to justify a diplomatic
default, but it kept warfare away from the Western front of Germany
for two distressful years.  The persistent shooting by Italians
over the French boundary was difficult to explain away, and indeed
it was not so much explained away as quietly disregarded.  The air
fleets of France paraded at intervals, to the increasing irritation
of all her immediate neighbours, but on the whole as a restraining
influence.  The demonstration chilled the foreigner and assuaged
the hotheads at home.

From the outset there was far less enthusiasm for this "localized"
European war of 1940 than had been displayed by the populations of
the belligerent countries in 1914.  What enthusiasm was displayed
was confined to the inexperienced young of the middle and upper
classes, the youth of the Fascisti, Nazi, "public schoolboy" and
scoutmaster type.  They went about, shouting and urgent, in a
heavy, sullen and apprehensive atmosphere.  No nation "leapt to
arms".  The common soldiers deserted and "fell out" incessantly,
and these shirkers were difficult to punish, since the "deserter
mentality" was so widespread, more particularly in the peasant
armies of Eastern Europe, that it was impossible to shoot
offenders.  One Posen battalion went into battle near Lodz with
thirty-nine officers and fifty-seven men.

From the first "economies" marched with the troops.  From the first
there was a threadbare needy quality about the struggle.  General
orders insisted upon "a restrained use of ammunition".

The actual fighting was, however, on a much higher level,
mechanically and scientifically, than the Japanese war in China.
The military authorities had good roads, automobiles, camions,
railways, rolling stock, electrical material, guns of all sorts,
and great air forces available.  Behind the fronts were chemical
and other munition factories in good working order.  If there were
no longer infantry battles there were some brilliant conflicts of
technicians.  The prompt cutting off of East Prussia from any help
from main Germany by the Permanent Death Gas was an operation far
above the technical level of any Eastern operations.  It was
strategically silly but technically very successful.

The first offensive against Berlin was also planned with modern
equipment and the maximum of contemporary military science.  It was
to be another "blow at the heart", and the Polish general staff
relied upon it as firmly as the Germans in 1914 had relied upon
their march on Paris.  Unfortunately for the Poles, it had been
necessary to consult a number of "experts" in preparing this
advance; there were leakages through France, through the Czech and
Swedish munition makers, through Russia, and through domestic
treason, and the broad outline of the plan was as well known and
understood in Berlin as it was in Warsaw.  The great gas raid on
Berlin was indeed terrifying and devastating, but the rush of
tanks, great caterpillar guns and troops in motor transport was
held and checked within sixty miles of the German capital by an
ingenious system of poison-gas barriers--chiefly Lewisite and Blue
Cross--wired mines and "slime pits" of a novel type in the roads
and open fields.  A cavalry raid to the north between Berlin and
the sea failed disastrously amidst wire, gas and machine-guns;
nearly forty thousand men were killed, wounded or taken prisoner.
Moreover, there had been mistakes in the manufacture of the gas
masks worn by the Polish troops, and several brigades gave way to
the persuasion that they had been sold and betrayed.  The main
Polish masses never came into actual contact with the German
troops, and only their great numerical superiority in aeroplanes
saved their repulse from becoming a rout.

The Polish armies rallied and, according to the secondary plan
prepared for any such failure, extended themselves and dug
themselves in along a line between Stettin and the Bohemian
frontier.  Behind the barrier they began a systematic reduction of
Silesia.  Every night an air battle raged over both Berlin and
Warsaw.  It was often an indecisive battle.  The Poles had the
numerical superiority, but the German machines were more efficient
and better handled.  But the Poles had far more of the new aerial
torpedoes--which could go to an assigned spot two hundred miles
away, drop a large bomb and return--than their adversaries.

Bohemia, like France, had mobilized but did not immediately enter
the war.  The Czecho-Slovak armies remained in their mountain
quadrilateral or lined out along the Hungarian front, awaiting the
next turn in the game.  Austria also remained excited but neutral.

The Southern war opened brilliantly for the Italians, and for some
weeks it went on without any formal connexion with the Polish
conflict.  Bulgaria, Albania and Hungary also declared war upon
Yugo-Slavia, the Italian air forces "darkened the sky", and few of
the towns in Croatia and Serbia escaped an aerial bombardment.  The
Italian fleet set itself to capture the ports and islands of
Dalmatia.  But the advance of the Italian troops into the hills of
Slavonia and Croatia was not as rapid as had been expected.  Six
weeks passed before they were able to fight their way to Zagreb.

The country was a difficult one, ill adapted to the use of gas or
mechanism, there was no central point at which a decisive blow
could be struck, and the population had a long tradition of
mountain warfare.  It did not affect these sturdy peasants whether
the townsmen were bombed or not.  They never gave battle; they
never exposed themselves in masses, but their bullets flew by day
and night into the Italian encampments.  Many of them went to and
fro between their fields and the front.  Munitions poured in for
them through Roumania, which, with a big Red Army on its
Bessarabian frontier and its own peasants recalcitrant, remained
also ambiguously, dangerously, and yet for a time profitably, out
of the struggle.  The Hungarians crossed the Yugo-Slav frontier and
threatened Belgrade, but the mass of their forces faced towards
Czecho-Slovakia and awaited further events.

A curious pause in the fighting occurred at the end of the year.
The frantic efforts of Prague, London and Paris to call a halt were
temporarily successful.  The invaders of Germany and Yugo-Slavia
remained upon enemy territory, but neutral zones were improvised
and there was a cessation of hostilities.  An eleventh-hour attempt
was made to stop the war by negotiation and keep the two conflicts
from coalescence.  There were weeks during which this seemed
possible.  Both Germany and Poland were of two minds about
continuing the war now that the Polish advance was held, and Italy
hoped to be left in possession of Dalmatia without an irksome
campaign of further conquest.  It was as if the spirit of
civilization had once more come near to awakening from its
hallucinations and had asked, "Why on earth is this happening to

The British Cabinet thought the occasion opportune for a conference
at Vevey to revise the Treaty of Versailles "finally".  The pacific
speeches of Duff-Cooper, Hore-Belisha, Ellen Wilkinson and Randolph
Churchill echoed throughout Europe and were brilliantly supported
by Benito Caruso and Corliss Lamont in America.  The Pope, the
Archbishop of Canterbury, the Non-conformist Churches, the
President of the Swiss Republic and the able and venerable
President Benes swelled the chorus of remonstrance.  France, which
had been growing steadily more pacificist after her social
conflicts in 1934-35, found able spokesmen in Louchère and
Chavanne.  Once again we are reminded of the impulses of Henry Ford
and Wilson.  Once again the concept of a World Pax flickered in the
human imagination and vanished.  This time it was a fuller, more
explicit and more unanimous chorus than that which had cried aloud
in 1916-17.  Yet at the time it was hardly more effective.  Vevey
prolonged the truce throughout 1941 until June, but it could settle
nothing.  The military authorities, having had a breathing-time,
became impatient.  With a mutually destructive malice the fighting
was resumed "before the harvest could be gathered".

Vevey failed because the constructive conception of the Modern
State had no representative there.  It was just another gathering
of national diplomatists who professed to seek peace, and yet who
set about the business with all those antiquated assumptions of
sovereignty that were bound to lead to a revival of the conflict.
The fantasy of some "balance of power" was as near as they ever
came to a peace idea.  Such a balance was bound to sway from year
to year and from day to day.  Whatever the common people and men of
intelligence were thinking, the experts now wanted to see the war
fought to a finish.  "The Germans hadn't been beaten enough" was
all too acceptable to the munition dealers and the Press in France
and Scandinavia.  "The Italians have their hands full in Yugo-

The British and Americans, who hoped to keep out of the conflict to
the end, had experienced an exhilarating revival of exports and
found their bills against the belligerents mounting very hopefully.
Once more Tyneside echoed to hammering; steel, iron and chemical
shares boomed and the iron and steel industry, like some mangy,
toothless old tiger, roused itself for the only quarry it had now
the vigour to pursue--man-eating.  It had long ceased to dream of
new liners or bridges or railways or steel-framed houses.  But it
could still make guns and kill.  It could not look far enough ahead
to reckon whether at last there would be any meat on the man's
bones.  The only countries that really wanted peace, enduring
peace, were Czecho-Slovakia and Austria, which stretched out
between the two combatant systems and had possible enemy frontiers
on every hand.  The human will for peace as it found expression at
Vevey was still a tangled and ineffective will.

The fighting revived almost simultaneously in the Polish Ukraine,
where the peasants had revolted and were evidently fighting with
Soviet officers and equipment, and in a vigorous surprise attack
upon the Polish lines to free the German soil from the invader.
The Germans had been working night and day during the truce to
equalize conditions in the air; they produced new and swifter
aeroplanes and a particularly effective machine-gun, and for some
weeks there was such aerial fighting as was never seen before or

Gradually the Germans established a sufficient ascendancy to bring
their bombers and gas into play.  Lodz and Warsaw were terrorized
and the civilian population evacuated and the Polish line broken so
as to restore communications with Silesia.  And then the conflict
broadened.  Lithuania, evidently with Russian encouragement, seized
her old city of Wilna, and Austria linked the Northern and the
Southern struggle by entering both wars as the ally of Germany and
Italy.  Germany declared her final union with Austria.  Very
swiftly now the remaining European states followed one another into
the cauldron.  Hungary attacked Eastern Czecho-Slovakia without a
declaration of war "to restore her legitimate boundaries", and
brought the army frameworks of Roumania into the field against her.
Thereupon Russia announced the impossibility of maintaining her
understanding with France in the face of these events, and the Red
Army advanced on Lemberg.  Macedonia was already a seething mass of
fighting, village against village; Bulgaria entered the "South
Slav" alliance and assailed Albania, and Greece seized Rhodes,
which had been up to that time held by Italy.

So France saw her ancient policy of "security", of setting state to
balance state and allying herself with a countervailing state at
the back of every antagonistic neighbour, work out to its necessary
conclusion.  Gladly would her business men and her peoples now have
rested behind her immensely fortified frontiers and shared the
profits of neutrality and munition-selling with the British and
Americans, but her engagements were too binding.  After one last
ambiguous attempt on the part of London, Washington and Geneva to
avert the disaster, France declared war against the Central
European alliance in 1943.

On the face of it the new war resembled the World War of 1914-18.
It seemed to be an attempt to reverse or confirm the Versailles
settlement.  It had an air of being the same sort of siege of
Central Europe.  But now Italy was in close alliance with the
Teutonic powers; Belgium, in a state of extreme industrial
distress, was out of the war; Britain stood aloof; and in the place
of her former Allies France had to help--rather than be helped--by
the band of states from the Corridor to the Black Sea and the
Balkans which the Quai d'Orsay had toiled so painfully to knit into
an anti-German alliance.

Russia, however, was a doubtful ally of the Central Powers; she was
not operating in concert with them; she was simply supporting the
new Soviet republics in Eastern Poland and Bessarabia.  There the
Red Army halted.  The old enthusiasm for a World Revolution had
faded out of the Russian imagination.  Marxism had become so
Russianized that it feared now to take in too large a contingent of
Western adherents.  The Kremlin was content to consolidate the
kindred Slav Soviets and then rest.  Japan and China and the
American continent remained out of the mêlée, concentrated on their
own social difficulties.

It would be possible for a superficial student to regard all this
merely as a rearrangement of the familiar counters of sovereign
state politics.  But, in reality, the forces in collision were
profoundly different.  France, in spite of her internal social
stresses, was still a capitalist community of the Nineteenth
Century type, with democratic parliamentary forms and irresponsible
finance and industrialism.  Save for the teaching of a sentimental
patriotism, her young people were mentally unorganized.  Her allies
were peasant states with governments of the royal or parliamentary
form, and, if anything, more old-fashioned.  But the Central Powers
were all of the new Fascist pattern, more closely knit in its
structure and dominated by an organization of the younger spirits,
which claimed to be an élite.

Except for the fundamentally important fact that these Fascisti
were intensely nationalist, this control by a self-appointed, self-
disciplined élite was a distinct step towards our Modern State
organization.  These various Fascisti were destined to destroy
their own states and disappear because of their essentially shallow
and sentimental mentality, their inability to get outside
nationalist traditions and coalesce; there is no direct continuity
between them and our modern educational and administrative system;
but there was nothing like them in the World War of 1914-18
anywhere, and they are noteworthy, as the Russian Communist Party
(in spite of its proletarian formula) is noteworthy, for their
partial but very real advance on democratic institutions.  Amidst
the chaos, that organized "devotion of the young" on which our
modern community rests was clearly foreshadowed in these Central
European states.  The idea of disciplined personal participation in
human government was being driven into the mentality of the new

Until something more convincing appeared, it had to crystallize,
disastrously enough, about such strange nuclei as the theatrical
Mussolini and the hysterical Hitler.  It had to be patriotic
because that was the only form in which the State then presented
itself.  But after these first crystallizations had been shattered
and dissolved in the war disasters that now ensued, the idea was
still there, this idea of banded cooperation ready to be directed
to greater ends.  Youth had ceased to be irresponsible in all the
Fascist countries.

Not only were these new wars unlike their predecessors in the fact
that they were not, so far as the Central Powers were concerned,
wars of the democratic masses, but also they were quite
unprecedented in the range and quality of the fighting.  We have
already indicated some of the main differences between the New
Warfare and the Old.  These now became accentuated by the
extraordinary way in which the boundaries of the battling states
interdigitated.  In the first spurt of conflict there was indeed a
"front" between Poland and Germany; but after 1943 there was no
front, no main objective, and no central idea to the storming
destruction that spread over Europe.

The Poles tried to draw a line of Permanent Death Gas across East
Brandenburg before their withdrawal to Posen, but their collapse
came too swiftly, and they were able only to poison three small
areas of no strategic importance.  After 1943 the war became mainly
a war in the air, with an increasing use of gas and landing raids,
raids rather than invasions, to seize, organize and hold
advantageous positions.  A bitter and intense naval struggle went
on in the Mediterranean to cut off reinforcements and supplies
between North Africa and France, but there was little molestation
of the Atlantic traffic of France.

There was never an Aerial Trafalgar, never an Air Ecnomus.  War in
three dimensions does not afford those channels, straits, narrow
seas, passes, main roads, by which an inferior force may be brought
to a decisive battle, and indeed to this day it is uncertain which
side was absolutely predominant in the air.  It was a war of raids
and reprisals, and no large decisive operations were attempted.  A
big German infantry push into Posen was held by gas and slimes, and
a French invasion of Italy got no further than Turin.

The complete exhaustion of the adversary, materially and morally,
became the only possible road to any sort of victory.  Once more
the tormented populations were urged to sustain a "war of
attrition".  "It is the man who holds out half an hour longer than
the other who wins" was translated into every European language.
The attacks on social order increased in malignancy as the
impossibility of any military decision became manifest.  Crops and
forests were deliberately fired, embankments smashed, low-lying
regions flooded, gas and water supplies destroyed.  The aviators
would start off to look for a crowd and bomb it.  It became as
cruel as the fighting of ferrets.

There was still, in spite of a decade of financial dislocation and
industrial depression, a vast amount of mechanical material in
Europe; everywhere there were factories strongly protected against
air attack and skilfully camouflaged.  Moreover, all the chief
belligerents had sufficiently open frontiers for the importation of
material, so long as anything compact and valuable could be wrung
out of their nationals by tax or levy, to pay for such supplies.
The goods crossed the frontier at night; the cargoes were piloted
into unlit harbours.  Every able-bodied adult not actually in the
fighting forces was pressed to work at excavations for bomb
shelters and the reconstitution of buildings against gas and high
explosive.  Much of this also was night work.  Recalcitrance and
shirking were punished by a deprivation of rations.  There is a
grim picture by Eglon Callet called "Security at Last", of which
the reader may have seen reproductions.  A chain gang of emaciated
and ragged Frenchmen is working under the lash in a tunnel.  In the
foreground one who has fainted is being given a stimulant; another,
past help, dies untended.

In comparison with the abundant literature of personal experiences
in the World War, at least so far as the Western front was
concerned, there are remarkably few records either of combatant or
non-combatant adventures during the Fighting Forties.  The big air
raids seem to have been altogether horrible.  They were much more
dreadful than the air raids of the World War.  They began with a
nightmare of warning maroons, sirens, hooters and the shrill
whistles of cyclist scouts, then swarms of frantic people running
to and fro, all pride and dignity gone, seeking the nearest shelter
and aid, and they ended for most of their victims in an extremity
of physical suffering.

We have already given some intimation of the nature of those
torture deaths.  In nearly every case the organization of refuges
and gas masks broke down.  In many cases there had never been a
real provision, but only sham visors and sham bomb-proof buildings
to allay "premature" panic and "keep up the popular morale".  None
of these great raids was ever reported in the newspapers that still
struggled on into the war years.  Even in America the publication
of any detail was treated as "pacificist propaganda against

There is a descriptive letter from Berlin after an air raid,
undated and signed "Sinclair", which is believed by most competent
critics to have been written by Sinclair Lewis the novelist (1885-
1990).  One passage may be quoted:

"We went down Unter den Linden and along the Sieges Allee, and the
bodies of people were lying everywhere, men, women and children,
not scattered evenly, but bunched together very curiously in heaps,
as though their last effort had been to climb on to each other for
help.  This attempt to get close up to someone seems to be
characteristic of death by this particular gas.  Something must
happen in the mind.  Everyone was crumpled up in the same fashion
and nearly all had vomited blood.  The stench was dreadful,
although all this multitude had been alive twenty-four hours ago.
The body corrupts at once.  The archway into the park was almost
impassable. . . ."

So we get one glimpse of how peaceful town-bred people might die a
century and a half ago.

The individual stories of the actual fighting in that last warfare
are no more ample than the non-combatant descriptions.  There was
little inducement for anyone to write about it in the subsequent
decades; there was not the same high proportion of literate men as
there was in the Western armies during the Great War; there was a
less artless interest in what was happening and more running away,
desertion, apathy, drunkenness, raping, plundering and malignant
cruelty, which are not things of which men leave records.  The
whole world was less sensitive than it had been thirty years
before; if it suffered more grossly it suffered less acutely.  In
1914-15 many of the British and German rankers kept diaries from
day to day.  This shows a sense of personality and a receptiveness
to events quite outside the sullen fatalism, shot with gleams of
primitive exaltation or fury, which seems to have been the
prevalent state of mind in the armies of the Forties.

In the Historical Documents Series there is a diary of a Japanese
officer who was killed in the retreat from Wuchang.  Failing any
European material of the same kind, it may perhaps be quoted here
to show how it felt to fight in the last wars of all.  It is not,
however, a very vivid document.  He was an intellectual, a
socialist and a strong believer in the League of Nations, and his
record is mainly a series of hostile criticisms in cypher of the
superior command.  But in the latter half these dissertations die
out.  The diary becomes a broken record of what he found to eat and
drink and how he fought against influenza and dysentery.  He seems
to have had a company of men with him; he notes twice when he
contrived a haul of food for them, and he jots down names as they
are killed or missing.  There are also figures that may be a note
of his diminishing ammunition.  He was already badly starved when
he was killed.  As he weakened he seems to have found his rather
complicated cypher too difficult to use, and he lapsed first into
bad English and then into plain Japanese.  The very last item is an
unfinished poem, a fragment in the old style, which might be
rendered as follows:

     Almond blossom in the spring sunshine,
     Fuji-Yama gracious lady,
     Island treasure home of lovely things,
     Shall I never see you again? . . .

Something, death perhaps, prevented the completion of his naive
verses.  He and his detachment were probably overtaken and done to
death near Kai-feng.

In none of these later war memoirs is there anything to recall that
queer quality of the 1914-18 stories, of men who felt they were
going out from absolutely sure and stable homes and cities, to
which with reasonable good fortune they would return--and live
happily ever afterwards.  The mood then was often extraordinarily
brave and tender.  The men of this later cycle of wars felt that
there would be no such home-coming.  They knew that they went out
to misery and left misery in active possession at home.  Their war
was not an expedition; it was a change for ever.  The memoirs of
the airmen who did so much destruction are amazingly empty.  They
note fights, but quite flatly.  "Put down two Polaks", for example;
"a close shave"; but they do not seem to have had an inkling of the
effect of the bombs they dropped upon the living flesh below.  Many
of these young men survived to become Modern State aviators and to
serve the Air and Sea Control after 1965.  But though some wrote
well of their later experiences, none of them has left any useful
documents for the history of the war time.  The historian turns to
his dates, maps and totals again from this meagre salvage of the
hopes, fears, dreads, curiosities and agonies of the millions who
went through that age of cruel disaster, doubtful whether he is
sorry or thankful that most of that welter of feeling and suffering
has vanished now as completely as though it had never been.

After 1945 the signs of exhaustion multiplied.  Such despair had
come to the souls of men that even defensive energy failed.  They
lay starving in their beds and hovels and let the bombs fall about
them.  But a whiff of gas could still cause a panic, a headlong
rush of tormented people coughing and spitting through the streets
to the shelter pits.  Influenza with its peculiar intensity of
mental depression came again repeatedly after 1942, and in 1945
came cholera.  These epidemics, though they seemed grave enough at
the time, were the mere first scouts of that great "Raid of the
Germs" which was in preparation for disunited humanity.  It was as
if they were testing the defensive organization of mankind.

Except for air warfare, Britain and the North European neutrals
were suffering almost as acutely as if they were actually at war.
They had poured munitions into Europe and reaped a harvest of bad
debts.  After the first economic exhilaration due to this state of
employment, the exports from Great Britain, which had once been the
pioneer of free world trade and cosmopolitan thought, dwindled to
insignificance; the erstwhile creditor of the world could not
collect such debts as were still due to her, and could not pay
therefore for the food supply of her dwindling but still excessive
population.  Her former sanitation had rotted to filthiness under a
régime of relentless saving.  Housing in that disagreeable climate
had passed from congestion to horror.  The first cholera epidemic
found her in the throes not only of famine but of civil disorder,
controlled and suppressed by her highly mechanized army and by the
still very powerful habits of orderliness and subordination in her
people.  Never, since the Black Death of the Fifteenth Century, had
the British Isles known such a pestilence.  They had believed the
days of pestilence were past for ever.  And yet that cholera was
only the precursor of the still more terrible experiences that were
to follow it in the subsequent decade.

Slowly but surely the spirit of protest and mutiny spread through
Europe.  That growing despairful insubordination that had done so
much to bring about the winding up of the World War in 1918
reappeared in new forms.  But because now war was no longer
primarily an infantryman's business, mass mutiny, such as had
crippled the French offensives after 1917, taken Russia out of the
war, and led to the final German collapse, had not now the same
disabling effect.  There were not the same big aggregations of men
under exasperating discipline and in touch with "subversive"
suggestions.  Power had passed over to the specialized forces--to
the aviators and war technicians.  By the use of small bombs,
machine-guns and the milder gases they could "handle" and disperse
mass meetings and "tranquillize" insurgent districts in a manner
that would have been inconceivable to the street barricade
revolutionaries of the later Eighteenth Century.

Even strikes in the munition factories were no longer so effective
as they had been, because even there the increased efficiency of
power production had ousted the comparatively unskilled worker
in his multitudes.  For the same reason the propaganda of
insurrectionary class-war communism, though it now dominated the
thought of nine-tenths of the European peasants and workers, found
unexpected obstacles in its attempts to seize control of affairs.
It could not repeat the Russian social revolution because the new
conditions were entirely different.  The Bolshevik success had been
possible only through the backwardness of Russia and the absence
of a technically educated social stratum.  The unrest and
insubordination of the common people in Central and Western Europe
could and did produce immense passive resistances and local
revolutionary movements, but it found opposed to it a whole system
of aviators, mechanics, technicians, scientific workers and so
forth who had learnt from Red Russia what sort of direction and
planning to expect from a proletariat led by party politicians.
Whatever they thought about their own governments--and already they
were beginning to think in a very fresh and vigorous fashion about
them--it was not towards democratic communism that the minds of the
scientific and technical workers were turning.

Nevertheless, with the help of organizers from Russia, the protest
of humanity against the prolongation of the New Warfare took for a
time the form of communist risings.  In 1947, in Marseilles, St.
Etienne, Paris, Barcelona, Milan, Naples, Hamburg, Lodz and Glasgow
there were mutinies of troops under arms and risings sufficiently
formidable to sustain provisional Soviets for periods varying from
a week to several months.  The Hamburg and Glasgow Soviets were the
best organized and held out longest, collapsing only after
considerable bloodshed.  Almost everywhere there were minor
incidents of the same character.  And the formal suspension of the
war by the responsible governments concerned was certainly due more
than anything else to their terror of a general social revolt.  As
the material organization of the system was shattered, as the
behaviour of the technicians became uncertain, the threatening
visage of the class-vindictive proletarian drew nearer and nearer
to the face of the stockbroker, the war-monger, the banker, the
traditional ruler.

It took nearly three years to end the last war.  The Conference of
London in 1947 did its best to work out a stable settlement of
Europe on the lines of the Versailles Treaty, but the politicians
and diplomatists were still incapable of the frankness and
generosity needed.  Face-saving was so much more important than
life-saving to these creatures that they actually allowed the now
pointless hostilities to be renewed in 1948.

In the spring of 1949, however, at Prague, President Benes achieved
what had seemed to be the impossible, and brought the fighting to
an end.  He did this by inventing a phrase and suggesting, instead
of a treaty, a "Suspension of Hostilities".  Each Power was to
remain in possession of the territory it occupied, and there was to
be no further fighting pending the assembly of an unspecified
Conference to be organized later.  Influenza, cholera, and at last
maculated fever, the progressive enfeeblement of economic life and
new developments of human relationship, prevented that Conference
from ever meeting.  The Benes Suspension of Hostilities became a
permanent suspension.  It endures to this day.

10.  The Raid of the Germs

That same dearth of detailed description which takes the colour out
of the history of the last wars becomes even more apparent in the
records of the epidemics that made any resumption of that warfare
impossible.  Diaries, letters and descriptive writing were out of
fashion; there were other things to do and no surplus energy in the
brain.  It is as if the micro-organisms had taken a leaf out of the
book of the Foreign Offices and found in mankind's confusion an
opportunity for restoring the long-lost empire of the germs.

The attack began in the best style without a declaration of war.
The first line of advance consisted of a variety of influenzas,
impoverishing fevers, that were highly infectious and impossible to
control under war conditions.  The depleted strength of the
belligerent populations, a depletion due to their reduced and
disorganised nourishment and the collapse of their sanitary
services, gave these infections full scope; they killed some
millions and diminished the already lowered vitality of the great
populations still further.  That lowering of the general vitality
was far more important than the actual mortality.  Cholera and
bubonic plague followed, and then, five years and more later, when
the worst seemed to have passed, came the culminating attack by
maculated fever.

This obscure disease, hitherto known only as a disease of captive
baboons, seems to have undergone some abrupt adaptation to the
kindred habitat of the human body; possibly there was some
intermediate host which prepared the bacilli for their attack on
mankind.  Or it may be that the preceding epidemics had changed
some hitherto defensive element in human blood.  We are still quite
in the dark upon these points because at that time there were no
doctors or biologists with the leisure to record observations, even
had they had time to make them, and scientific publications had
ceased to appear anywhere.

The disease appeared first in the vicinity of the London Zoological
Gardens and spread thence with incredible rapidity.  It discoloured
the face and skin, produced a violent fever, cutaneous irritation
and extreme mental distress, causing an uncontrollable desire to
wander.  Then the bodily energy vanished in collapse and the victim
lay down and died.  The fever was not simply infectious through
water, but transmitted by the almost impalpable scabs scratched off
by the sufferer.  Wind, water and the demented sick carried it
everywhere.  About half humanity was vulnerable, and so far as we
know now all who were vulnerable took it, and all who took it died.

So the world's malaise culminated in the terrible eighteen months
between May 1955 and November 1956, at which latter date Nature
with a pitiless but antiseptic winter came to the rescue of the
human remnant.  No effectual cure was ever devised for this
fever and no helpful palliative.  It swept the whole world and
vanished as enigmatically as it came.  It is still a riddle for
pathologists.  It no longer affects even the surviving baboon
population, so that investigators can make no cultures, nor attempt
any experiments.  There is no material.  It came, it destroyed, and
it seems to have at last committed suicide with some unknown anti-
body of its production.  Or the real disease, as Mackensen
believes, may have been not the maculated fever at all, but the
state of vulnerability to its infection.  That vulnerability had
spread unsuspected throughout the world, he thinks, in the warring
forties.  The actual pestilence was not the disease but the harvest
of a weakness already prepared.

History is like the individual memory in this, that it tends to
obliterate disagreeable experiences.  One of the most nonsensical
things that was ever said was that a country is happy that has no
history.  On the contrary, it is only the really secure and
prosperous phases that have left anything like sufficient material
for historical reconstruction.  We know of the pleasant social life
of all the centuries of abundance in Egypt; we know the greatness
and conquests of Assyria; the court-life of Ajanta and Central Asia
is pictured for us to share; but the days of military disaster
leave nothing but a band of ashes, and the years of pestilence
merely break the continuities of the record.  There is a good
account of the Plague of London (1665) written by Defoe (1659-
1731), and the unwary reader has to be warned that that account was
compiled and fabricated many years after the event by an ingenious
writer who was not even an eye-witness.  There is a painting by
Raphael of the plague in Rome which is similarly reminiscent.  Most
of the great plagues of history took their dead and departed
unportrayed.  What concerns history is the subsequent social and
economic dislocation.  On that Clio becomes copious again.  What
goes on again matters to her, but what is dead is dead.

The flowering prosperity of the nineteenth and early twentieth
centuries has left us an almost uncontrollable mass of record about
people who knew nothing except by hearsay of the more frightful
experiences of mankind.  We have novels, letters, diaries, memoirs,
pictures, photographs and so on by the million.  But there survives
hardly a letter, no pictures, and not a book or newspaper to throw
light on those years 1955 and 1956, little more than a century and
a third ago, which were certainly the most terrible through which
our race ever passed.  What was written at the time was destroyed
as infectious.  Afterwards it was left for a new generation of
Defoes and Stephen Cranes to contrive a picture.

The descriptions of Cable, Nath Dass, Bodesco and Martini seem to
be fairly justifiable, and to these fictions the reader is
referred.  They ring the changes upon not only villages but towns
and cities with none but dead men and women in them; people lying
unburied and gnawed by packs of hungry dogs and solitary cats; in
India the tigers and in Africa the lions came into the desolate
streets, and in Brazil the dead population of whole districts was
eaten chiefly by wild hog, which multiplied excessively.  Rats
swarmed, and with an unwonted boldness threatened even the immune.

One terror which is never omitted is the wandering of the infected.
Nothing would induce them to remain in bed or hospital; nothing
could keep them from entering towns and houses that were as yet
immune.  Thousands of these dying wanderers were shot by terror-
stricken people whom they approached.  That dreadful necessity
horrifies us to-day as much as that other grim act of self-
protection: the survivors in the boats of the big steamship Titanic
which struck an iceberg in 1912, beating at the knuckles of the
drowning men and women who clung to the sides and threatened to
swamp them.  For awhile, under such desperate and revealing
stresses, man ceased to obey the impulses of a social animal.
Those of the population who resisted the infection--and with
maculated fever the alternatives were immunity or death--gave way
to a sort of despair and hatred against the filthy suffering around
them.  Only a few men with medical, military, priestly or police
training seem to have made head against the disaster and tried to
maintain a sort of order.  Many plundered.  On the whole, so far as
the evidence can be sifted, women behaved better than men, but some
few women who joined the looters were terrible.

This nightmare came and passed.

In January 1957, people were walking about in the deserted towns,
breaking into empty houses, returning to abandoned homes, exploring
back streets littered with gnawed bones or fully-clad skeletons,
and they were still unable to realize that the wrath of Nature was
over and life still before them.

Maculated fever had put gas warfare in its place.  It had halved
the population of the world.

11.  Europe in 1960

The more advanced student of history finds it necessary to work out
in detail the local variations of the process by which the great
patchwork of empires and nationalist states, set up during the Age
of European Predominance, lost its defining lines, lost its
contrasted cultures and its elaborated traditions, and ceased to
divide the allegiance and devotion of men of goodwill.  It was
still standing--a hollow shell in 1933; in 1966 it had gone.  It
crumpled up, it broke down; its forms melted together and

For the purposes of general education, the intricate interplay of
personalities and accidents in this world débâcle can be passed
over, as we pass over the details of the Great War or of Napoleon's
various military campaigns, and as Gibbon, the author of the
Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (published between 1776 and
1788) passed over a thousand years of Byzantine court life.
Nowadays that sort of history has become a mine for those admirable
biographical studies which are ousting the old romantic novel from
the entertainment of our leisure so soon as our imaginations have
passed beyond the purely romantic stage.  All that is needed for
our present purpose is some understanding of the broader forces
that were operating through this lush jungle of human reactions.

The tempo of human affairs increases continually, and the main
difference between the decline and fall of the Roman system and the
decline and fall of the world rule of private-profit capitalism in
the Twentieth Century lies in the far more rapid onset and
development of the later collapse.  A second important difference is
the much livelier understanding of what was happening on the part of
the masses involved.  Each of these two great depressions in the
record of human well-being was primarily a monetary breakdown, due
to the casual development of financial and proprietary law and
practice without any reference to a comprehensive well-being, and to
the lag in political and educational adaptation which left the whole
system at last completely without guidance.  But while the former
débâcle went to the pace of the horse on the paved road and of the
written and spoken word, the phases of the new downfall flashed
about the globe instantaneously and evoked a body of thought and
reaction out of all comparison greater than the Roman precedent.  So
we see only a much compressed and abbreviated parallelism.  From the
demoralization of the deflated Roman Empire by the great plagues at
the end of the second century of the Christian era, to the
reappearance of commerce, industry, art and politeness in the cities
of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, was well over a thousand
nerveless years; from the invasion of Belgium by the Germans in 1914
to the return of general material prosperity under the Air
Dictatorship after 2010 was roughly a century.

The mental process, if for this reason alone, was much more
continuous.  It got to its conclusions while still in contact with
its premises.  The first world collapse was spread over a number of
generations, each one oblivious of the experiences of its
predecessor, but the larger and swifter part of the second world
collapse fell well within the compass of a single long life.
People who could remember the plentiful and relatively stable times
between 1924 and 1928 as young men and women were still only at the
riper end of middle age in 1960.  Many who were children at the
onset of the Hoover Slump were taking an active part in affairs in
the days of the first international police, the Police of the Air
and Sea Ways.  It was possible to grasp what was happening as one
whole.  It is doubtful if any Roman citizen under the Empire ever
grasped what was happening.

Nevertheless in each case there was a parallel obliteration of old
ideas, the same effacement of boundaries, the same destruction of
time-honoured traditions, the lapsing of debts and obligations, the
disappearance of religious and educational organizations, the
impoverishment of favoured and privileged classes, the recrudescence
of lawlessness, the cleansing disillusionment.  Each was the
effectual liquidation of a bankrupt civilization preparatory to a
drastic reconstruction.

We will now take a sort of rough cross-section of the world at
about the date of 1960 C.E., and consider the condition of the main
masses of the world's population and the great forces at work among
them.  In the light of subsequent events we can realize that there
was already a very considerable convergence of conditions going on
throughout the middle decades of the century.  But it may be
doubted whether that was evident at the time.  The goal towards
which the fundamental bionomic forces were driving was everywhere
the same, but the particulars varied widely with the geographical,
ethnic and traditional circumstances, and their immediate
interpretations were even more diverse.

We have viewed the events of the Era of European Predominance as
the outcome of an uncontrolled irregularity in growth, of economic
hypertrophy in a phase of political and cultural atrophy.  An
immense increase in the energy of human society had occurred which
had relieved itself partly in a great multiplication of the human
population (Europe from 180 to 420 millions between 1800 and 1914,
says Werner Sombart, in spite of a great emigration), partly in a
monstrous exaggeration of warfare, and less considerably in an
increased fullness and speed of the individual life.  But, as we
have related, the forces of conservativism and functional
resistance embodied in the creditor and legal systems were
presently able to give pause to the release of fresh energy.  For
the second time in human experience the inadaptable quality of the
financial and proprietary organization produced a strangulation and
an arrest.

The money and credit organization of the prosperity of the
nineteenth century differed in many respects from, and was more
elaborate than, the Roman, but its life history was essentially the
same.  It wound itself up in the same fashion.  First came a vast
expansion and increase of private fortunes and then destructive
taxation.  So far history repeated itself.  The European system,
like the Roman system before it, impoverished itself finally by the
violent expenditure of its vast windfall of energy.  It repeated
the same blind story of wastage, but with the unprecedented
headlong facilities science afforded it.  It ran through its
available fortune and was helplessly in debt in a few decades.  The
height of its expenditure was between 1914 and 1950.  Thereafter
the pace was less catastrophic.

Regarded even as destruction the New Warfare proved in the end to
be a failure.  It went to pieces when it was attempted.  It did not
kill as it might have killed--which is why the reader is alive to
read this history.  The actual battles of the European wars in the
Forties--the purely military operations, that is to say--in all
their ramifications cost mankind hardly a quarter of the battle
slaughters of 1914-1918.  And yet they mark the highest level of
scientific fighting ever attained by mankind.  The Asiatic troubles
had been more destructive because they were nearer the barbaric
level, but even there the actual deaths in warfare are estimated as
under nine million.  Of these, nearly five million are to be
ascribed to the final offensive of Japan in 1938, the deadlock in
Central China, the desperate fighting with the Kuomintang levies
west of Hankow, and the subsequent retreat.

Man had fallen as short as all that of the magnificent horrors he
had anticipated.  He had failed to raise war to its ultimate
mechanical level.  The social and political dislocation following
upon these two main struggles was indeed proportionately far
greater than the disorder of 1917-1919, but warfare was its prelude
rather than its cause.  This New Warfare, which the prophets had
said would end in a scientific massacre of mankind, passed
insensibly into a squalor of political fiascos, unpayable debts,
unsubscribed loans, scrapped machinery, insurrection, guerilla and
bandit conflicts, universal hunger and the great pestilences.  Gas
Warfare and Air War faded out of the foreground of human
experience, dwarfed and overwhelmed by the more primitive realities
of panic, famine and fever.  The ultimate victor in the middle
twentieth century was the germ of maculated fever.  The main causes
in the fall of the world's population from about two thousand
million in 1930 to a little under half that total in 1960 were
diseases or simple starvation, arising directly from the complete
economic collapse.  Where war slew its millions in a few great
massacres, pestilence slew its hundreds of millions in a pitiless
pursuit that went on by day and night for two terrific years.

As Imhoff has said, there is no single European history of these
Famished and Pestilential Fifties which followed so swiftly on the
war years; there are ten million histories.  The various
governments created by the Treaty of Versailles were for the most
part still legally in existence throughout this age, but with the
monetary cessation they had become so faded and ineffective that
they had ceased to have any great influence on everyday life.
Some, like the British and the French, limited their activities to
efforts--generally quite futile efforts, at tax-collecting; they
went on finally in a way which will remind the student of the old
tribute-levying Empires before the Helleno-Latin period.  They
interfered spasmodically with local affairs, but for the most part
they let them drift.  They ignored or compromised with active
resistance.  The British government was still, it seems, paying
arrears upon its various loans, in 1952, to such stockholders as it
was able to trace.  The records are obscure; the payments seem to
have been made in a special paper currency without real purchasing
power.  Other governments, like the Italian and Spanish, carried on
as real administrative bodies within restricted areas.  Rome, for
instance, remained in fairly effective control of the triangle
marked out by Genoa, Florence and the Mediterranean Coast, and
Barcelona and Madrid kept order throughout most of the Peninsula
except the Sovietized Spanish Riviera, Portugal and Andalusia.

The process in America was roughly parallel.  Detachment was easier
so soon as the bankrupt railways ceased to operate there, because
the distances between population centres were greater and the
capacity of the people for local autonomy much greater.  They were
still not a century from pioneering.  The railways never resumed
after the pestilence.  The authority of the Federal Government of
the United States shrank to Washington, very much as the Eastern
Empire shrank to Byzantium, but Washington had none of the vitality
of Byzantium, and it was already a merely historical capital long
before the revival of tourism towards 2000.  Germany as a unity did
not survive the Polish wars, and Berlin dwindled rapidly to the
status of a group of villages amidst the ruins of the Polish aerial

The practical effacement of these bankrupt political systems in a
few years, the equally rapid drying up of general transport and
communications, the crescendo of the monetary breakdown, the speedy
degeneration of military organizations, threw back the tasks of
social order upon such local and regional leading as still existed.
They found themselves astonishingly called upon.  In Europe, as all
over the world throughout this extraordinary decade, towns, cities,
rural districts, discovered themselves obliged to "carry on" by
themselves.  The plague only drove home that imperative need.  The
municipal authorities organized such health services as they could
against the infection, or gave way to emergency bodies that took
things out of their hands.  When the plague disappeared, they were
like shipwrecked sailors on a strange island; they had to
reconstitute their shrunken economic life.  They used old authority
for new needs and old terms for new things.  Here it would be an
energetic leader who called himself the Mayor or the Duke, here a
resolute little band, self-styled the Town Council or the Citizens'
Union.  Here "advanced" terminology prevailed, and it was a "Soviet
of Workers" which took control.  In effect the latter would be very
similar to a Citizens' Union.  Its chief distinction was its
consciousness of being in a new social phase.

There was the most extraordinary variation in the political
structure of this phase of dislocation, and a flat contradiction
between the actual and the "legal" controls.  Across South Germany,
Poland and North France, the prevalent impression was one of social
revolution, and Soviets were in fashion.  But they were very
different in character from the original local Russian Soviets.  It
was possible to find a Communist district referring itself vaguely
to Moscow, lying side by side with another that was under the
control of its former owners and employers and professed to be, and
often was, still in communication with the national government in
the capital.  An uneasy truce would be maintained between these
theoretically antagonistic systems.  Deputations would go for
authority in various disputes--arrears of taxes in hand--to
Westminster, Paris or Rome, very much as the barbarian chiefs of
the Early Mediæval period would upon due occasion refer to
Byzantium or Rome.  Local conflicts and revolutions were constantly
occurring.  They were recognized at the capitals only as local
riots and municipal readjustments.

Scattered through this disarticulating Europe were the vestiges of
the old militarism, broken fragments of unpaid armies with
irreplaceable weapons and a dwindling supply of ammunition.  They
consisted of the officers who were soldiers by profession, and the
levies who had not been disbanded or who had refused to be
disbanded because there was no employment for them outside the
ranks.  These men had their officers very much under control
because of the great facilities for desertion.  In some cases these
shrivelled military forces were in contact with the capital and the
old legal government, and conducted, or attempted to conduct, tax
requisitions and suchlike surviving functions of the old order; in
other instances they became frankly brigand forces, though often
with high-sounding titles, Public Order Guards of the Emergency
Army.  Most merged with the local police of aggressive Mayors or
councils.  Small wars of conquest went on in the early Sixties.
Old empires and sovereign states reappeared, in duplicate or
triplicate, and vanished or became something else.  After 1960
there were even quasi-military forces levying contributions,
keeping a sort of order, and professing to be Modern State nuclei.
They would occupy the old barracks and accommodation of garrison

In the Forties these soldiers had been raw recruits.  In the
following decades those who remained in their old formations became
formidable middle-aged rascals in patched and shabby and
supplemented uniforms.  Some of the commandants had gained control
of local aerodromes and local munition factories, but everywhere
the military found themselves more and more out of sympathy with
the technical workers they needed to make these acquisitions
effective.  They degenerated to the level of the nineteenth century
infantry and were at last glad to get even a few thousand roughly
made cartridges to replenish their supply.

Under the necessity of doing things for themselves, people did
things for themselves that they had left to the central government
for a century.  Even during the World War, and in the year or so of
stress that followed it, various French Chambers of Commerce had
supplemented the deficiency in small change by local token
coinages.  Now this practice reappeared widely.  Today our museums
contain hundreds of thousands of specimens of these improvised
European coins of lead, nickel, tin and all sorts of alloys, jetons
or checks of wood, and tons of signed, printed paper notes, useful
in the local market, acceptable for rents and local taxes, but of
no avail at all at a distance of a few score miles.  The local bank
manager as often as not would improvise a local credit system in
cooperation with the local solicitor; the doctors would contrive a
way of getting along without the Home Office.  There were still
printers' establishments in most centres of population, and for
some years local periodicals, often of considerable originality,
appearing weekly or monthly and printed on the roughest and most
variable paper, supplied all that remained alive of the European
Press.  But their foreign news amounted to little more than rumour.
The great Press agencies were bankrupt and dead; the telegraph
organization was out of gear.

Save in a few exceptional centres, the diffusion of news by radio
died out completely.  The manufacture of receiving sets was
entirely disorganized.  From 1930 to 1970 the "ether" for all
except the special purposes of air transport was still.  There is a
long and interesting study in the Historical Record Series of the
vicissitudes of posts, telegraphs and telephones between 1950 and
1980.  There seem to have been extraordinary survivals.  Apparently
London, Paris and Rome were in telephonic communication almost
without a break, and the news of the great London landslide was
telephoned to Madrid and thence radioed to Buenos Ayres in 1968.
But that may have been a revival connected with the new Sea and Air

The disappearance not only of radio sets but of an enormous variety
of small conveniences and appliances was extraordinarily rapid
after the collapse of world trade.  Photography, for instance, was
wiped out almost at once.  The bicycle became rare, and the old
pneumatic tyre was replaced by a thin solid one of often very badly
adulterated "remade" rubber.  Electric lighting flickered out and
vanished for want of the proper material for filaments.  All
electrical material deteriorated, and tramway systems either fell
into complete disuse or returned to horse traction.

Ordinary life had been lowering its standards bit by bit from the
World War onward.  First one thing went and then another.  Neither
in the British nor the French provinces did the housing of the
common people recover from the cessation of building during the
actual warfare.  Except in places like Berlin or Vienna where there
had been a vigorous outbreak of post-war building which provided
accommodation in excess for the shrunken population, the mass of
Europeans were even more congested and dirty in their domestic
accommodation than they had been before the conflict, though indeed
they never sank to the immemorial squalor and poverty of the
Chinese and Indian towns.  Cleanliness diminished at such a pace as
to be noted even by the newspapers after 1933.  There are constant
complaints of the dirtiness of the streets and the bad repair of
the roads, and regretful comparisons with the trim orderliness of
twenty years before.

Clothing declined with housing.  The clothing trade shrank steadily
per head of population for nearly forty years.  The city crowds, in
spite of the more and more abundant uniforms (until 1950), lost
nearly all their former brightness and élan.  People patched up
their old clothing for want of new, and rags became increasingly
common.  The supply of boots was very restricted.  The mass
production of boots had been commandeered at the outbreak of the
war and was never turned back to commercial use because of the
complete financial ruin that ensued.  But the old-fashioned
shoemakers had been driven off the face of Europe long before by
this mass production, and so throughout the Famished Fifties the
Europeans were very painfully shod.  Spain had the best boots and
France and Britain took to sandals--and chilblains.  A certain
manufacture of footwear went on in some centre in Bohemia, now
untraceable, and next to Spain ranked Central Europe in the order
of shoe welfare.  There was an extreme scarcity of hats everywhere.

There was also a universal decline in the little comforts and
accessories of life to which the world had grown accustomed.
Except in a few favoured regions where it was actually grown,
tobacco disappeared.  The mass production of cigarettes died out,
and those who smoked, smoked pipes of substitute.  Real tea became
a great rarity, and sugar was scarce.  Dietetic diseases and
diseases of under-nutrition increased.

During the strain and effort of the Great War most of the Europeans
had already learnt something of contrivance and makeshift.  Now
they were to have a decade of domestic management under
difficulties.  The Germans were already familiar with the word
Ersatz; there was much technical knowledge and ability diffused
among them; and it is indisputable that they contrived to keep much
nearer comfort than the rest of the world during these dismal
years.  They devised substitute leather, substitute cotton,
substitute coffee and tea, substitute tobacco, substitute quinine
and opium, and a very respectable list of other substitute drugs.

At the other extreme were the shiftless Irish.  Until the return of
production their physical misery was very great indeed.  One
observer doubted if there were a million yards of new cloth
produced in that country between 1950 and 1960.  "They live," he
reported, "on buttermilk, potatoes, whisky and political
excitement.  They have contrived garments of woven straw, often
very picturesquely dyed, which they call Early Erse and of which
they boast inordinately, and they warm themselves by means of fires
of peat and dung and a great warmth of mutual invective."  This
sounds quite barbaric.  Yet it is to this period that we owe the
graceful--though, according to a recent Historical Documents
report, rather rickety--Church of the Atonement, built on the site
of the Dublin Royal College of Science after that had been
suppressed by the Censorship of 1939 for "teaching biology in a
manner tending to disintegrate the Holy Trinity".

The student must be more or less familiar with the representations
of this period in that useful compilation Historical Scenes in a
Hundred Volumes, and he has probably read a number of romances and
stories of this time.  Actual photographs are least abundant in the
later fifties and early sixties.  There were still plenty of
cameras in the world, but the supply of films seems to have died
out after 1955, and there are hardly any but slow wet-plate
exposures after that time for nearly ten years.  We get only a few
score of such animated snapshots as were abundant during the
preceding decades, and there are no European cinematograph films at
all.  Neither was there much sketching except of single figures,
and so the editors have had to supplement their material by very
carefully studied drawings and photographed restorations made at a
later date.

There are six interesting snapshots of scenes in Lyons in 1959.
Someone seems to have found a spool of film and been able to
develop it.  One shows the big central square, the Place Bellecour
as it was called, on a market day.  Earlier pictures show a big
bronze equestrian figure of Louis XIV, but this had already
disappeared, probably it had been melted for its metal; and the
windows of some of the big buildings, formerly hotels and
hospitals, in the background have the empty frameless look of
gutted houses.  But the scene is quite a busy one.  It was probably
the monthly market, and there is a considerable amount of cattle,
numerous horses being traded, hurdled sheep, many goats and a row
of pig-pens.  The people are mostly peasants wearing straw hats and
either very old coats or in some cases shawls wrapped about them.
Townspeople are still wearing the clothing of the 'thirties, shabby
and patched, and there are three market officials or magistrates in
the old-world top hat.  In the foreground a bearded man leads a
couple of oxen harnessed to a small "runabout" car in which a
corpulent woman sits in front with a crate of ducklings while
behind is a netted calf.  The lady smiles broadly at the camera,
unaware that she is smiling at posterity.

Another of these snapshots shows a bowls competition in the
deserted railway station.  It is clearly a festive occasion, and
several games are in progress.  The rails have disappeared from the
tracks, which have been levelled for the game, and the ponies and
mules of the players are tethered on the platform in a long line.
The doors of the various bureaus have been taken away but the
inscriptions Chef de Gare, Salle d'Attente, Restaurant, are still
faintly visible.  There are two long tables on one of the middle
platforms on which simple refreshments are being served.  A third
picture shows a crowd staring at the ruins of a row of houses which
have just collapsed down a steep slope in what is apparently the
district known as Fourvière.  Here two bearded men in the
unmistakable uniform of the old Alpini are keeping order.  We know
as a matter of fact that the Lyons municipality at that time had
three regiments of these soldiers quartered in barracks.  They are
wearing sandals supplemented by cloth strips that are twisted round
their legs, and their cloaks are in good condition.

Three others of these photographs give us a glimpse of the state of
affairs in a disused silk factory.  Up to the time of the economic
collapse, the silk manufactured at Lyons was still largely that
produced by the silkworm, but the supply of raw material seems to
have died out more or less completely in the Rhône valley, and the
shrinkage of trade and then the war diminished the importation of
the reeled-up thread.  But silk was needed in the manufacture of
shells, and probably there were special efforts to maintain the
supply up to the last.  This particular establishment seems to have
been carrying on a diminished output until the Lyons commune in
1951.  Then no doubt it was abruptly abandoned.  One photograph
shows a great heap of paper litter among weaving-machines and a
number of petrol cans.  Apparently there was an attempt to fire the
place.  Another gives a vista of winding-machines shrouded in
spiders' webs and fine dust.  In a third a wild cat crouches among
the spindles of a spinning-machine and spits at the unwanted
intruder.  The machinery has all the complicated clumsiness
characteristic of twentieth-century mechanism.  Apparently a window
of some sort was opened or a blind drawn back to make this
particular photograph, for the picture is blurred with a multitude
of whirling moths, most of them out of focus, evidently just
stirred up.

These particular pictures are valuable because of their
authenticity.  There are also two contemporary dry-plate pictures
of the Café Royal, the big restaurant of the Grand Hotel of
Stockholm, deserted and still intact.  They are oddly suggestive of
two pictures of the ruins of the Baths of Caracalla in Rome as they
appeared a hundred years earlier.  And there is also a photograph
of the remains of the old dining-room of the Hotel Métropole at
Brighton in England before it was undermined and fell into the sea.
But all the rest of the pictures given in Historical Scenes between
1955 and 1963 are arranged pictures.  The Transport organization
was running scores of aeroplanes and radio communications were
restored long before the complex manufacture of photographic
apparatus and material was set going again.

There are some very interesting restorations of conditions in
London showing the empty streets and the vacant tumbledown
warehouses of the city after the pestilence.  The pictures of the
corridors of the hotels in the Strand turned into hospital wards
are very impressive.  So too is the sketch of a great fight between
the cow-keepers and the potato-growers for the possession of Hyde
Park and Kensington Gardens in which three hundred people were
killed.  The dreadful pictures of the bodies of plague victims
floating down the Thames and accumulating in the Pool of London,
however, are now said to be exaggerated.

We try in the midst of our present securities to imagine the phases
of anxiety, loss, incredulity and reluctant acquiescence through
which the minds of hundreds of millions of Europeans passed, day by
day, from the general comfort of the Twenties, through the shocks,
fear, horror, rage and excitement of the war cycle, into this phase
of universal impotence and destitution.  The poor perhaps had a
less vivid apprehension of disaster than the rich.  Even in the
days of General Prosperity, as it is called, they had at the best
what we should consider very dull, drab, irksome lives.  Even
though they mostly ate sufficiently, they ate badly, and there was
never a stage of universal decent housing at any time for them.
They went from bad to worse.  They passed from toil to unemployment
and lethargy.  But the middling sort passed from good to bad, from
something one might almost consider tolerable living to the
hopeless neediness of the masses.

A class that went through great unhappiness everywhere during this
period was the class of elderly and "retired" persons and persons
of "independent means" (and no responsibilities) which had expanded
so enormously during the First Age of General Prosperity.  This
superfluity of prosperous humanity had spread itself out very
pleasantly over the world, oblivious of the exertions that
sustained social discipline and ensured its security.  Insensibly
it had taken the place of the old administrative and directive
noblesse and country gentry.  The investment system during its
period of steady efficiency had relieved this social stratum of
every bother.  There were great areas of agreeable country,
residential districts, given up to this "well-off" society, to its
gardens, which were often delightful, its golf-courses, race-
courses, mountain sport centres, parks, country clubs, plages, and
hotels.  It wilted a little during the World War, but revived again
very hopefully in the decade of hectic and uncertain expansion that
followed.  Then, as the Great Slump developed its grim phases, this
life of leisure passed away.

The Phase of Economy is really a misnomer.  There was really no
economy; there was strangulation and inaction through a cessation
of expenditure.  Nobody--unless it was a dexterous speculator on a
falling market--grew richer, or even relatively richer.  The only
profits appeared in bank balance sheets.  As the malady of arrest
spread, traffics declined, enterprise died out, borrowing states
and corporations suspended payments, and these children of good
fortune, these well-off people, found themselves confronted at the
same time by a suspension of payments and more and more urgent
charitable appeals.  Their bankers and solicitors informed them
that first this trusted prop and then that was in arrears or in
default.  The waters of repudiation rose, submerging security after
security.  If they sold out and hoarded, some fluctuation in
exchange might still engulf great fractions of their capital.
"Whatever else may be falling off, sleepless nights are on the
increase," a financial paper remarked in 1933.  The head full of
self-reproach that tossed on the crumpled pillow in the villa
marked time with the fretting of the unemployed who worried in the
stuffy cold of the slum.

We have the Diary of Titus Cobbett, who rode on a bicycle from Rome
and along the Riviera to Bordeaux in 1958.  He had begun life as an
art dealer, and had served the British Inland Revenue for some
years as a valuer of furniture, pictures and the like.  His tour
seems to have been a journey of curiosity.  He complains bitterly
of the difficulty of changing money between Genoa and Bordeaux.  He
seems to have had some obscure diplomatic or consular function, but
of that he is too discreet to speak.  Perhaps he was sent to make a
report, but if so there is no record of his instructions.

His description of that smitten coast is still very interesting
reading.  He had, as a young man with good connections, known Monte
Carlo well in the twenties, and the places he visited were often
those at which he had stayed as a guest.  He records the
abandonment of hundreds of lovely châteaux, locked-up, unsaleable,
abandoned, in the keeping perhaps of some old domestic, or frankly
looted by the people of the district, once delightful gardens whose
upkeep had become impossible, blind tangles of roses, oleanders,
pomegranates, oranges, cypresses, palm trees, agaves, cacti and
weeds; unremunerative hotels allowed to fall into ruins, broken-
down water-conduits washing away the roads, bungalows taken over by
the peasants.  Something of the same swift desolation must have
come upon the Campagna and the villadom of the Bay of Naples during
the ebb of Roman vitality, but this had been a swifter decline.
The roads, he says, were very variable, but a great number of the
road signs and roadside advertisements were still making their mute
appeal to a vanished traffic.  As he rode along wondering whether
he would find a reasonably clean and hospitable shelter for the
night, he read, he says, picked out in metallic knobs that answered
brightly to his oil lamp:

                      H  TEL  S  LEN  ID

                       CU  SINE  RENOM

                   T  T  LE  C  NFOR  M  RNE

Whither had host and guests departed?  Where were the owners and
tenants of these villas and gardens; the bright clientele of the
pleasure resorts?  Many of them no doubt were already dead, for the
Riviera owners had been mostly middle-aged and oldish people.  The
rest were back in their own countries leading impoverished lives,
full of tiresome reminiscences, lost in the universal indigence.

Cobbett visited the ruins of the old Casino at Monte Carlo, and the
younger Sports Club.  The ceiling of the American Bar had fallen in
a few days before his visit.  "They looked small," he says.  "When
I was young they had seemed tremendous places."

The celebrated garden in which suicidal gamblers used to put an end
to their troubles was overgrown with mesembryanthemum.

Yet there was one exception to this general decadence, and our
observer stresses the significance of that.  Air traffic was still
going on.  Between Rome and Marseilles he notes very precisely that
he saw thirteen aeroplanes going east or west, besides two that he
heard before he got up in the morning.  "I doubt if I should have
seen so many twenty-five years ago," he writes, and goes on to
enlarge, very illuminatingly, on the revival of trade and the
possible revival of order these throbbing mechanisms portended.  At
Nice and at Marseilles he noted there was shipping--"not mere
fishing boats but ships of a thousand tons or more"; and at Nice
they were building a bigger ship--he estimated it as a three-
thousand tonner.  We have no other records of shipbuilding between
1947 and 1962.  Long before 1940 the building of very big ships had
ceased to be a "paying proposition" and it is fairly certain that
no sea-going ships whatever, big or little, were built anywhere in
the world in the early fifties.  Year by year the transport system
of the bankrupt planet had been sinking into disuse.  It is only
nowadays that our historical students are attempting to work out
statistical charts of that swift decadence.

Cobbett also notes with surprise and hope a stretch of railway
(operated by lever trolleys and a petrol engine or so) between the
port of Marseilles and some inland quarries.  He was clearly under
the impression that no railways were operating in the world any
longer.  So soon as the traffic had sunken to a level below the
possibility of paying subsistence wages, maintaining the permanent
way and meeting running expenses, it had been impossible even for
speculative buyers to handle these once valuable properties.  They
had become old junk on the landscape, tracks of torn and rusty
rails smothered in agaves and wild flowers.  He mentions the beauty
of the viaducts of the old Sud de France, and tells how he bicycled
along the footworn side-path of the Paris-Lyon-Méditerranée in
preference to the road.  The peasants had used the derelict railway
as a convenient iron-mine, and few rails remained.  Most of the
sleepers had been used for fuel.

At Fréjus there was an aerodrome, and here he describes a very
illuminating conversation with a Spanish-American aviator who had
served first with the Poles, then with the Germans, and finally
with the French during the warfare.  Cobbett was impressed by the
evident revival of trade, and surprised to find rubber, spices,
mercury and block-tin among the commodities coming by air from the
East, while clocks, watches, compasses, knives, needles, buttons,
hardened glass and the like were going back in exchange.  Most of
the trade was barter, and the profits were so considerable that
there seemed every reason to expect a steady expansion of the

He seems to have learnt for the first time of the developing
combination of air-merchants who were mostly aviators surviving
from the war.  They had already organized a loose world union, it
seems, and were keeping the airways and air lights in order.

Cobbett remarked on the shipping revival he had noted.

"We shall have to watch that," said the aviator significantly.

"You take passengers?"

"When they can pay a passage."

"But this is civilization coming back!" cried Cobbett.

"Don't believe it!  It's a new civilization beginning."

And he seems to have opened Cobbett's eyes for the first time to
some of the ideas that were already taking shape in such brains as
his.  "World Empire?" he said.  "That's an old idea!  The men who
hold the air and the transport hold the world.  What do we want
with empires and that stuff any more?"

Cobbett was greatly impressed by this conversation.  He went on
across France to Bordeaux, where it seems some sort of money
awaited him, thinking this over and jotting down his thoughts.  He
makes one sound and interesting parallel between this new World
Transport Organization and those Hansa Merchants who played such an
important rôle in the revival of civilization about the Baltic and
North Europe generally after the Roman collapse.  "After all,"
reflects Cobbett, "we have never given organized transport and
trading its proper importance in history."

At Bordeaux he sold his bicycle and was able to get a passage in an
aeroplane to Le Bourget (an aerodrome of old origin near the ruins
of Paris) and thence to fly to Hendon.  His 'plane landed at Le
Mans for an exchange of goods.  His delight to escape from the
rough roads he had been riding is infectious.

He describes the recovery of the devastated French forests in the
form of scrub, and he peered down at the little peasants' clearings
that were appearing in groups and patches round the old towns.  He
sees the aviators and mechanics at the aerodromes with new eyes,
and he learns from them of the way in which World Transport was
picking up and reinstating metallurgical and electrical works.  He
has an eye for the beauty of Le Mans cathedral, which he had seen
and admired in his student days, and which he rejoices to find
intact, and he describes that early monument to the pioneers of
aviation in the Place below which still survives.  Amiens cathedral
also was uninjured at that time.

His diary ends on a melancholy note.  Apparently he had not visited
England for some years, and he is shocked by the ruinous desolation
of the outer suburbs of London.  Plainly he had lived in and loved
London as a boy.  A part of Hyde Park, in spite of the opposition
of the squatter cultivators, had been converted into an aerodrome,
but he found the rebuilding of the central region haphazard and
unpleasing.  He objects to the crowding of heavy buildings, with
their vast anti-aircraft carapaces of cement, at the centre, due to
the decay of suburban traffic facilities.  It looked, he says, like
a cluster of "diseased" mushrooms.  "When shall we English learn to
plan?" he asks, and then with an odd prophetic gleam he doubts
whether the northern slope of the Thames depression, so ill drained
and so soft in its subsoil, can carry this lumpish mass of unsound
new buildings to which the life of the old city was shrinking.

Only ten years later his fears were to be justified.  The bed of
the Thames buckled up and the whole of the Strand, Fleet Street,
Cornhill and, most regrettable of all, the beautiful St. Paul's
Cathedral of Sir Christopher Wren, so familiar to us in the
pictures and photographs of that age, collapsed in ruin and
perished in flame.  The reader who has pored over Historical Scenes
in a Hundred Volumes,--and what child has not?--will remember the
peculiar appearance of the old Waterloo Bridge, crumpled up to a
pent-house shape, and the grotesque obliquity of the Egyptian
obelisk, once known as Cleopatra's Needle, that venerable slab of
hieroglyphics, cracked and splintered by air-raid shrapnel, which
slanted incredibly for some years before it fell into the banked-up
water of the Lambeth-Chelsea lake.

12.  America in Liquidation

The preceding sections have given a general view of the course of
history in the Old World during the middle decades of the twentieth
century.  Even in Europe certain regions, as we have noted, stand
rather aloof from the essential drama, following a line of
development of their own, less tragic and intense than that of the
leading Powers.  Spain, for example, the new Spain that was born in
1931, has the rôle of an onlooker, an onlooker much preoccupied
with his own affairs.  Still more noticeable is the non-
participation of both Latin- and English-speaking America in these
passionate and violent happenings.  They suffered parallel
economic, political and social stresses, but within their own
limits.  After the financial storms of the Early Thirties, the
shocks that came to them from the European troubles affected them
less and less.  They took up their particular aspect of the decline
and fall of private capitalism and worked it out in their own way.

Yet the fact they did share in that decline and fall brings out
very clearly a fact that was sometimes disputed in the past: the
immediate causes of the world collapse in the twentieth century
were first monetary inadaptability, secondly the disorganization of
society through increased productivity, and thirdly the great
pestilence.  War was not a direct cause.  The everyday life of man
is economic, not belligerent, and it was strangled by the creditor.
Had the world been already one state in 1900, and had it still been
an economy of private accumulation with a deflating currency, it
would have collapsed in very much the same fashion that it did
collapse.  Had it been cut up into a hundred belligerent states at
that time, but with a monetary system that restrained the creditor
and allowed industrial development without limit, it might have
released sufficient energy to have gone on with its wars for
another century or so before it reached the goal of mutual
extermination.  The monetary collapse was the most immediate factor
in the world's disorganization, enfeeblement and famine.  Without
it man might have pursued a far longer and more strenuous career to
massacre and suffocation.  On the whole it was perhaps well for him
that progress tumbled over finance in the nineteen-thirties.

The futility of all the early anti-war movements becomes
understandable only when we grasp the essential importance of a
sane monetary nexus.  On this we have insisted throughout, we have
elucidated the connexion of the creditor and traditional
antagonisms from half a dozen angles, and nothing could emphasize
and drive home the lesson more than the parallelism of the American
and Old-World experiences.

From the days of their first political separation from the European
system the American communities had gone through their own series
of developmental phases, independent of and out of rhythm with the
course of events in the Old-World.  Independent--and yet not
completely independent, because they were upon the same planet.
Throughout the nineteenth century the American mind, in north and
south alike, was saturated with the idea of ISOLATION.  It was
taught in the schools, in the Press, in every political utterance
of a general import, that the New World was indeed a new world, an
escape from the tyranny of ancient traditions to peace, liberty,
opportunity and a fresh life for mankind.  It had to avoid all
"entangling alliances" with Old-World states and policies, forget
the inveterate quarrels and hatreds of Europe even at the price of
forgetting kinship and breaking with a common culture, and work out
and set the example of a more generous way of living.  From the
days of George Washington to the days of Woodrow Wilson, in spite
of the Civil War and much grave economic trouble, the American mind
never abandoned its belief in its own exemplary quality and its
conception that towards the rest of the world its attitude must be
missionary and philanthropic.  It realized that it knew many things
very simply, but it had no doubt it knew better.

Throughout the nineteenth century both America and Europe expanded
enormously, economically, biologically.  America was profoundly
impressed by her own growth and disposed to disregard the equal
pace of European progress.  Assisted by a tremendous immigration
from Europe, the population of the United States increased by about
80 millions in a hundred years.  But in spite of that tremendous
emigration, Europe during that period added 240 millions to her
multitudes.  The American cherished a delusion that he had "got on"
relatively to Europe.  His life had in fact expanded, concurrently
with the European's, and through the working of ideas and
inventions and the importation of human energy from the older
centres.  In his unimpeded continent the different elements in the
expansion increased at rates that did not correspond with the
European process.  He was living in a similar progressive system,
but he was more and more out of phase with Transatlantic

And throughout that century inventions in transport and
communications were "abolishing distance" and bringing points that
had formerly been months apart into a few hours' or a few moments'
distance from one another.

The resulting alternations of intimacy and remoteness across the
Atlantic constitute one of the outstanding aspects of twentieth-
century history.  It is like two great and growing tops that spin
side by side.  They approach, they touch and clash, they wabble and
fly apart.  Or it is like two complexes of machinery, destined
ultimately to combine into one world mechanism, whose spinning
wheels attempt to mesh and fail to mesh and jar with a great shower
of sparks and splinters and separate again.  From the end of the
nineteenth century onward the unifying forces of life were tending
to gear America with Europe.  By the middle of the twentieth
century any observer might have been forgiven the conclusion that
the intergearing had failed.

We have already given great prominence in this history to the
figures of Henry Ford, Woodrow Wilson, and the second Roosevelt,
Franklin Roosevelt.  We have told of the magnificent advance upon
Europe and the subsequent recoil of America within and about them.
A brief but competent contemporary book by an American publicist,
Frank H. Simonds, Can America stay at Home? (1933) surveys the
question of isolation very illuminatingly as it appeared in the
opening years of the great economic slump which closed down for
good and all the wild freedoms of Acquisitive Private Capitalism.
He shows how the phases of approach and repulsion succeeded one
another from the first imperialist enterprises of Roosevelt I
(Theodore Roosevelt, 1901-1909) onward; how impossible it seemed
for America either to keep out of Old-World affairs or to mingle
frankly in them.  It expressed its virtuous opinions and would not
back them.  It insisted upon moral judgments and would not take
responsibility.  In European eyes, to quote Simonds' new historical
phrase, "American concern for peace appeared a transparent
endeavour to combine the mission of John the Baptist with the
method of Pontius Pilate."  The explanation lay in just that
mixture of liberal modernity and naive crudity in the American
intelligence on which we have laid stress.

From its beginning the American republic was a break with history,
a new thing, far newer, having regard to its period, than the
Soviet Republic of Lenin, and from its beginning it was failing to
go on with its newness, failing to develop and intensify its ideas.
It evolved a body of higher schools and cultivated men to think
itself out only after more than a century of independence; in the
interim it left its mass education to underpaid teachers and
repetitive women.  It grew bodily, immensely, and for more than a
century it lived on imported brain-food.  The result was this
rawness, this immense sense of its mission and this want of any
subtlety or vigour in its conduct.  Wilson's foolish preachments
and arrangements, so foolish and yet so saturated with the wisdom
of world peace, were perhaps the highest expression of the American
mind of his time.

The American mind even in the nineteenth century was not an
ignorant mind; it was an immensely uneducated mind.  If it was
clumsy, it was also free.  Its religious "revivalism" was exactly
parallel to its political fluctuations.  We find in the stories and
studies of authentic American life such features as camp-meetings
and organized emotional campaigns for repentance and conversion.
We think of firelit scenes, of harsh preaching and lusty chanting.
These waves of popular feeling, these gatherings, often in the
woods, with their hymn-singing, their exhortation, their shouts of
penitence and exultant belief, the mindless exaltation and the
subsequent mindless deflation of American spiritual life, were
precisely reflected in these booms and slumps of the American world
mission.  Only with the shock of world economic disaster did the
real social and political thinking of America rise to its full
vigour.  The retreat of the United States from the imbroglio of
European affairs as the great depression intensified was marked by
a new, more vigorous determination to grip the essentials of social

And certainly there was everything to stimulate thought in the
internal situation.  The dégringolade was at first more rapid even
than in Europe.  The industrial edifice had been reared to giddier
heights of mass production and fell more heavily.  In 1928 the
United States of America still believed itself the most prosperous
country in the world; in 1933 its unemployed were more hopeless and
formidable than those of any other continent.  But they made no
organized effort of revolt; they had no revolutionary formula to
bring them together.  They revolted as individuals and gangs and
became criminals.  Society was not overthrown, but it crumbled
rapidly to dust and disorder.  The crime wave, the financial
stress, the frantic efforts to economize, and all the consequent
strangulation of popular education and the dissolution of
confidence, order and intercommunication--that sequence which we
have already traced in general terms manifested itself most
severely and typically in this vast, comparatively unhistorical
area.  Roosevelt II struggled gallantly but he came too late to
stop the rot.

In America as in Europe a phase of fragmentation set in.  It was
not a smash to which one can give a definite date, but every day
there was something happening in the direction of dissolution.  In
America as in Europe State governments became insolvent phantoms
making feebler and feebler efforts to collect taxes, and the
Federal authority in Washington faded away, if not as completely as
the League of Nations in Europe, at any rate in a comparable
manner.  We have the same phenomena of municipalities becoming
autonomous, and provisional controls, Citizens' Unions, Law and
Order Societies, Workers' Protection Associations and plain
Workers' Soviets (in New Mexico and Arizona) springing into
activity here, there and everywhere.  In the Blue Mountains and on
the Pacific coast small republics had already isolated themselves
in 1945 and were carrying out a strange blend of Methodism,
"Technocracy" and the Douglas Plan, and Utah had become a
practically autonomous Single-Tax State and had restored Mormonism
of the original type as the State religion.  But there had been no
formal secession from the Federal Union anywhere.

There is in the Records a description of Washington in the year
1958, by a former attaché of the British Embassy there.  (All
the Ambassadors of the British Empire had been replaced by
"consolidated consuls" in 1946.)  He describes a visit to the White
House, where he was entertained at lunch by President Benito
Caruso.  The President was carrying on although his term had
expired because his successor elect had disappeared on his way to
the capital in the Allegheny Mountains.  There had been
considerable confusion about the last election, and two Secession
Presidents who were disputing possession of the State of New York
after a conflict over the Yonkers Ballot Boxes had cut off
communications with New England altogether.

The President received his visitor very cordially and asked many
very sympathetic and intelligent questions about the European
situation.  He spoke very hopefully of the American outlook.  The
"return to Normalcy", he said, was at last in sight.  There had
been a restoration of the steamboat traffic on the Mississippi, and
cotton was going through to the north again in spite of the
political unrest.  A hundred and forty automobiles had been sent to
South America alone in the year 1956-7 in the place of only
seventy-two for the previous year.  The new quinine-coffee barter
system was working well.  He looked forward now to a steady upward
movement in business affairs.  The Hoover Slump had, he admitted,
lasted much longer and had gone much lower than had been expected,
and it had tried the people to the utmost, but they had faced their
trials in a manner worthy of the fathers of the republic.  He
concluded with the compliments usual then between the two great
divisions of the English-speaking peoples.

The lunch was plain but ample.  There was excellent pork and a
variety of vegetables which the President with genuine democratic
frankness boasted he had raised himself with the help of his negro
"secretariat" in the pig-pens and garden at the back of the White
House.  The duties of the secretariat seem to have been in the
household rather than the office.  They had been appointed for
abstruse political reasons, and several of them were unable to
read.  Mrs. Caruso, a very pleasant lady of Irish extraction, was
disposed to dwell on the difficulties of housekeeping in Washington
in view of the increasing unpunctuality in the collection of the
Federal revenue, but the President checked her, evidently
considering these domestic matters a reflection upon the solvency
of the nation.

At that time only about a third of the States were actually
represented by Congressmen in the Assembly.  The rest had found it
either too expensive or unnecessary to send delegates.  A member
was in possession of the house, a tattered individual, reciting
some lengthy grievance; there were no reporters visible, and nobody
was listening to him.  Apparently this man was trying to "talk out"
some legislative proposal, but the visitor could not find anyone
who could explain the situation precisely.

The visitor dined on the following day with the eloquent, vital and
venerable Senator Borah from Idaho (1865-1970).  He was in
excellent form, and talked throughout the meal.  Indeed, he talked
so ably that his visitor was unable to ask him several questions
previously prepared for him.  He too was extremely hopeful for his
country.  He admitted that there had been a marked decline in the
grosser welfare of America during his lifetime.  He would not
quarrel with statistics.  In tons of coal and steel, in miles of
railway run, in the mass production of motor-cars and commodities
generally, it was possible to institute unfavourable comparisons
with the past.  "But man does not live by bread alone," said
America's Grand Old Man.  "Let us look a little nearer the heart of

That heart, it seemed, had never been sounder.  The pestilence,
like everything that came from God, had been "wholesome".  The
standard of life was, he maintained, higher than it ever had been,
having regard to the nobler aspects of things.  Fewer bathrooms
there might be, at least in working order, but there was far more
purity of mind.  In his younger days there had been a lamentable
lapse into luxurious indulgence and carelessness on the part of the
free people of the States, but all that was past.  America was
nearer now to the old Colonial simplicity, honesty and purity than
she had ever been.

A little inconsecutively the Senator went on to denounce the
dishonesty of Europe and the disingenuousness of European and
particularly of British diplomacy.  He seemed for a time to be
repeating long-remembered speeches and to have forgotten how
completely British diplomacy had lapsed.  He had apparently heard
the word "attaché" before he began to talk, and that had sent his
mind back to old times.  He returned to the present situation.  The
United States, he insisted, had gone through far blacker phases in
its early history.  A hundred and fifty-four years ago Washington
had been burnt by a victorious British army.  Nothing of the sort
had occurred during the present depression--if it could still be
spoken of as a depression.  Even at the darkest hour in this great
Hoover Slump nobody had ever thought of burning Washington.

Later on this same traveller visited the University of Chicago,
Columbia University, Harvard and a number of other centres of
intellectual activity.  His comments are shrewd and intelligent,
and fall in very conveniently with our examination of the mental
reactions that even then were rapidly producing a new and more
sinewy American consciousness amidst the ruins of its ancient

These institutions were naturally in a most varied state of
adjustment to the new conditions.  Not all were progressive.
Harvard reminded him of what he had read of the ancient lamaseries
of Tibet.  There was practically no paper to be got for note-taking
or exercises, and the teaching was entirely oral and the learning
done by heart.  The libraries were closely guarded against
depredations, and the more important books were only to be
inspected in locked glass cases.  A page was turned daily.  The
teachers varied in prestige with the number of their following.
They either sat in class-rooms and under trees and lectured, or
they went for long walks discoursing as they went to a rabble of
disciples.  They varied not only in prestige but physical well-
being, because it was the rôle of these students to cultivate food
for their masters and themselves in the college grounds and produce
woven clothing and sandals in the Technical and Art Buildings.
Some literary production was going on.  The more gifted students
wrote verses on slates and these, if they were sufficiently
esteemed by the teaching staff, were written up on the walls or
ceilings of the building.  The atmosphere was one of archaic
simplicity and studied leisure.  The visitor was entertained by
President Eliot, a tall distinguished-looking elderly man in a
toga, who had inherited his position from his grandfather.  There
was a large open fire in the room, which was lit by tallow candles
which two undergraduates continually snuffed.  The President talked
very beautifully over his simple soup, his choice Maryland claret
and a cornucopia of fruit and nuts, and the conversation went on
until a late hour.

The impression of Nicholson, the visitor, was one of an elegant
impracticability.  The simple graciousness of the life he could not
deny, but it seemed to him also profoundly futile.  He seems,
however, to have concealed this opinion from the President and
allowed him to talk unchallenged of how Harvard had achieved the
ultimate purification and refinement of the Anglican culture, that
blend of classicism and refined Christianity, with a graceful
monarchist devotion.

"There is a King here?" asked the visitor.

"Not actually a King," said the President regretfully.  "We have
decided that the Declaration of Independence is inoperative, but we
have been unable to locate the legitimate King of England, and so
there has been no personal confirmation of our attitude.  But we
have an attitude of loyalty.  We cherish that."

The chief subjects of study seem to have been the Ptolemaic
cosmogony, the Homeric poems, the authentic plays of Shakespeare
and theology.  The scanty leisure of the students did not admit of
a very high standard of gymnastics, and they seem to have abandoned
those typical American college sports of baseball and football
altogether.  The President spoke of these games as "late
innovations".  One chief out-of-door employment seems to have been
wood-cutting and felling.

This glimpse of graceful and idealistic pedantry is interesting
because it left so few traces for later times.  It depended very
much on the personality of the President himself, and after his
death at an advanced age, and the hard winters of 1981 and 1983,
this ancient foundation seems to have been completely deserted and
allowed to fall into ruin.

Both Columbia University and Chicago were in violent contrast to
Harvard.  Here the influence of the new De Windt school of thought
was very evident, and the traditions of Dewey, Robinson, Harry
Elmer Barnes, Raymond Fosdick, the Beard couple and their
associates were still alive.  Although New York City was already
abandoned and dangerous because of the instability of its huge
unoccupied skyscrapers, there was still considerable trading on the
Hudson River and some manufacturing activity.  The great iron
bridges were still quite practicable for pack horses and mules,
and, affording as they did a North and South line of communication
of quite primary value, they gave the place a unique commercial
importance.  The industrial workers there and in Chicago were in
close contact with the college staffs, and they were working with
very great energy at what they called "The General Problem of

"They don't", writes Nicholson, "admit that civilization has broken
down.  They talk here just as they did in Washington, of the Hoover
Slump.  I never met people so confident that somehow and in some
fashion things will pick up again.  There is nothing like this at
home.  One night there was a tremendous crash and an earthquake.  A
huge pile called 'Radio City' had collapsed in the night.  In the
bright keen morning I went out to the Pantheon, and there a crowd
of people was watching the clouds of dust that were still rising,
and listening to the occasional concussions that marked minor
fallings-in.  Were they in the least downhearted?  Not at all.
'There's a bit more liquidation,' said a man near me.  'We have to
get these things off our hands somehow.'"

Nicholson gives a fairly full account of the curricula of both
Columbia and Chicago.  He is greatly struck by the equipment of the
scientific laboratories and the relative importance of experimental
work.  "I felt almost as though I was back in 1930," he says, "when
I visited the Rockefeller chemical laboratory."  But still more was
he struck by the advanced state of the sociological work.  "They
are producing a sort of lawyers who are not litigators," he writes.
"I think the new law stuff they are doing here is the most
interesting thing about the place.  It isn't what my father would
have recognized as law at all.  It's the physiology and pathology
of society and social therapeutics arising therefrom.  There are
one or two men here, Hooper Hamilton and Rin Kay for instance,
whose talk is a liberal education.  They won't hear any of the rot
we deal out at home about the Sunset of Mankind."

That was his key observation, so to speak.  But it is interesting
to note that the reduction of Basic English to practicable use was
also being made.  Spanish and English were already on their way to
become the interchangeable languages they remained throughout all
the earlier twenty-first century.  The teaching of French had
fallen off very greatly, and the old classical studies (Greek and
Latin) to judge by his complete silence about them, had been
completely abandoned.

Our tourist flew from Chicago to the Ford Aerodrome at Dearborn,
saw the ruins of the main factories and the reconstructed
settlement, and spent some days with the Technological School there
and in the still very imperfectly arranged Museum of American Life.
It was startling to see some scores of square miles of closely
cultivated land round the open space of the Aerodrome and to learn
that an old Ford idea of dividing the time of the staff between
agricultural production and mechanical work was still in effective
operation.  There were associated textile and boot factories in
Detroit.  There was still an output of some thousand-odd
automobiles a year and a "few hundred" (!) aeroplanes.  And there
was a small but healthy radio department.

"We keep in touch," said the Director.  "We don't interfere with
people, and we are not interfered with.  We are running all that is
left of the distance letter post. . . .  Yes, Canada and Mexico as
well.  Nobody bothers us now about the boundaries, and we don't
bother.  When trade was at its worst we sat tight, cultivated our
farms, and did experiments."

The Henry Ford, that "great original" whose adventure of the Peace
Ship has been chosen to mark a turning-point in our history, had
long since played out his part, but the Director mentioned in these
papers seems to have been his son Edsel, carrying on the
initiatives of his finely simple-minded parent.

That the place was able to "sit tight and carry on" was no empty
boast.  The visitor from a slovenly world dwells on the "tidiness"
of everything.  The Edison workshop was still in the original state
as it had been re-erected by Henry Ford; there or in the Museum
Nicholson was shown the first phonograph and the first telephone
ever made, and the earliest experimental automobiles and

"It is as recent as that," he tells us he said.  "In the lifetime
of ourselves and our fathers we have seen the beginning, the
triumph, and the collapse of the greatest civilization that the
world has ever seen.  We have spanned the whole history of
mechanical mass production."

"Not a bit of it," said the Director.  "It's hardly begun."

There followed a long conversation the gist of which the visitor
seems to have written down immediately in dialogue form.  Its
interest for the student of history lies in the fact that here
again we have evidence of the way in which amidst the world-wide
collapse into misery, disorder and incoherent peasant life the
vitality of the mechanical transport system was manifesting itself.
We can put the talk of the Dearborn director side by side with that
of the European aviator reported by Titus Cobbett.  There is the
same realization of the final death of the old order.  "All that
king business and congress business is as dead as mutton," said the
Dearborn director.  "And the banking business is deader."

"And what is coming?" asked the visitor.

"THAT," said the director, and pointed to a mounting aeroplane
inaudible and almost invisible in the blue.



1.  The Plan of the Modern State Is Worked Out.

2.  Thought and Action: the New Model of Revolution.

3.  The Technical Revolutionary.

4.  Prophets, Pioneers, Fanatics and Murdered Men.

5.  The First Conference at Basra: 1965.

6.  The Growth of Resistance to the Sea and Air Ways Control.

7.  Intellectual Antagonism to the Modern State.

8.  The Second Conference at Basra: 1978.

9.  "Three Courses of Action."

10.  The Life-Time Plan.

11.  The Real Struggle for Government Begins.

1.  The Plan of the Modern State Is Worked Out

In the preceding chapters the culmination, the dislocation and the
collapse of the private capitalist civilization has been told.  It
has been a chronicle of disaster, wherein particular miseries, the
torment and frustration of thousands of millions, are more than
overshadowed by its appalling general aimlessness.  We have seen
the urge towards unity and order, appearing and being frustrated,
reappearing and again being defeated.  At last it reappeared--and
won.  The problem had been solved.

The world was not able to unify before 1950 for a very simple
reason: there was no comprehensive plan upon which it could unify;
it was able to unify within another half century because by that
time the entire problem had been stated, the conditions of its
solution were known and a social class directly interested in the
matter had differentiated out to achieve it.  From a vague
aspiration the Modern World-State became a definite and so a
realizable plan.

It was no great moral impulse turned mankind from its drift towards
chaos.  It was an intellectual recovery.  Essentially what happened
was this: social and political science overtook the march of

Obscure but persistent workers in these decades of disaster pieced
together the puzzle bit by bit.  There is a fantastic disproportion
between the scale of the labourers and the immense consequences
they released.  The psychology of association, group psychology,
was a side of social biology that had been disregarded almost
entirely before the time of which we are writing.  People had still
only the vaguest ideas about the origins and working processes of
the social structure in and by which they lived.  They accepted the
most arbitrary and simple explanations of their accumulated net of
relationships, and were oblivious even to fundamental changes in
that net.  Wild hopes, delusions and catastrophes ensued

If you had interrogated an ordinary European of the year 1925 about
the motives for his political activities and associations and his
general social behaviour, he would probably have betrayed a feeling
that your enquiry was slightly indelicate, and if you overcame that
objection, he would have talked either some nonsense about the
family as the nucleus of social organization, a sort of expansion
of brothers and cousins, kith and kin to the monarch, the Sire of
the whole system, or he would have gone off in an entirely
different direction and treated you to a crude version of
Rousseau's Social Contract in which he and the other fellows had
combined under agreed-upon rules for mutual defence and aid.  The
betting would have been quite even as to which of these flatly
contradictory explanations he would have given.

He would have said nothing about religious ties in 1925, though
fifty years earlier he might have based his whole description on
the Divine Will.  He would have betrayed no lucid apprehension of
the part played by the money nexus in gearing relationships; he
would have been as unconscious as his Roman predecessor of the
primary social importance of properly adjusted money.  He would
have thought it was just stuff you earnt and handed out and got
things for, and he might have added rather irrelevantly that it was
"the root of all evil".  He would certainly have referred to the
family idea when his patriotism was touched upon, if not before, to
justify that tangle of hates, fears and consequent and subordinate
loyalties; he would have talked of "mother country" or "fatherland".
If he practised any craft or skill, he might or might not have had
his mind organized in relation to his profession or trade union, but
there would be no measure between that and his patriotism, either
might override the other, and either might give way before some
superstitious or sexual complex in his make-up.

Incidentally he would have revealed extensive envy systems and
social suspicion and distrust systems, growing up at every weak
point like casual fungi.  Everything would be flavoured more or
less with the chronic hatred endemic everywhere.  And all these
disconnected associations from which flowed his judgments and
impulses he would have regarded as natural--as natural as the shape
of his ears; he would have been blankly unconscious that the
education of school and circumstances had had anything to do with
his accumulation.

On millions of minds equipped in this fragmentary fashion,
uninformed or misinformed and with no internal connectedness, the
institutions of the world were floating right up to the middle of
the Twentieth Century.  Tossing at last, rather than merely
floating.  Men called themselves individualist or socialist, and
they had not the beginnings of an idea how the individual was and
might be related to society; they were nationalist and patriotic,
and none of them could tell what a nation was.  It was only when
these institutions began to batter against each other, and leak and
heel over, and show every disposition to go down altogether, that
even intelligent men began to realize how haphazard, sentimental
and insincere were their answers to the all-important question:
"What holds us together and sustains our cooperations?"

This prevalent superficiality and ignorance about socializing
forces was the necessary reflection of a backwardness and want of
vigour in academic circles and the intellectual world.  The common
man, busied about his petty concerns, did not know nor think about
collective affairs because at the time there existed no knowledge
or ordered thought in an assimilable form to reach down and
stimulate his mind.  The social body was mentally embryonic from
the top downward.  That it was possible to demonstrate a complete
system of social reactions and to state the necessary idea of the
Modern State in convincing and practically applicable terms, had
still to penetrate to the minds not merely of the politicians and
statesmen, but of the psychologists, historians and so-called
"economists" of the time.

In 1932 Group Psychology was at about the same level of development
as was physical science in the days of the Marquess of Worcester's
Century of Inventions (1663).  It was still in that vague
inconclusive phase of "throwing out" ideas.  It was no more capable
of producing world order than the physical science of 1663 could
have produced an aeroplane or a steam turbine.  The ordinary man
seeking guidance in the dismay of the Great Slump (see Emil
Desaguliers' Ideas in Chaos and Society in Collapse, 2017) was
confronted with a sort of intellectual rummage sale.  He had
believed that somewhere somebody knew; he discovered that nobody
had ever yet bothered to know.  A dozen eminent authorities with
the utmost mutual civility were giving him every possible and
impossible counsel in his difficulties, suavely but flatly
contradicting each other.  They were able to do so because they
were all floating on independent arbitrary first assumptions
without any structural reference to the primary facts of human

Nevertheless certain primary matters were being rapidly analysed at
that time.  The general understanding of money, for example, was
increasing rapidly.  Desaguliers notes about a hundred and eighty
names, including the too-little-honoured name of that choleric but
interesting amateur, Major C. H. Douglas (Works in the Historical
Documents, Economic Section B. 178200), who were engaged in
clearing away the conception of a metallic standard as a monetary
basis.  They were making it plain that the only possible money for
a progressive world must keep pace with the continually increasing
real wealth of that world.  They were getting this into the general
consciousness as a matter of primary importance.

But they were proposing the most diverse methods of realizing this
conception.  The "Douglas Plan" appealed to the general social
credit, but was limited by the narrow political outlook of the
worthy Major, who could imagine bankers abolished but not
boundaries.  In America an interesting movement known as
"Technocracy" was attracting attention.  Essentially that was a
soundly scientific effort to restate economics on a purely physical
basis.  But it was exploited in a journalistic fashion and
presented to a remarkably receptive public as a cut-and-dried
scheme for a new social order in which social and economic life was
to be treated as an energy system controlled by "experts".  The
explicit repudiation of democratic control by the Technologists at
that date is very notable.  The unit of energy was to be the basis
of a new currency.  So every power station became a mint and every
waterfall a potential "gold-mine", and the money and the energy in
human affairs remained practically in step.  Another important
school, represented by such economists as Irving Fisher and J. M.
Keynes, was winning an increased adherence to the idea of a price
index controlling the issue of currency.

It was a phase of disconnected mental fermentation.  Many of those
who were most lucid about monetary processes were, like Douglas and
Keynes, still in blinkers about national and imperial boundaries;
they wanted to shut off some existing political system by all sorts
of artificial barriers and restraints from the world at large, in
order to develop their peculiar system within its confines.  They
disregarded the increasing flimsiness of the traditional political
structure altogether.  They were in too much of a hurry with their
particular panacea to trouble about that.  And if the money
reformers were not as a rule cosmopolitans, the cosmopolitans were
equally impatient with the money reformers and blind to the primary
importance of money.

A third class of intelligences stressed the urgent necessity for
great public enterprises to correct the paradoxical increase of
unemployment consequent upon the increase of productivity that had
taken the shiftless world by surprise.  That was an independent
maladjustment.  But thinkers of this school were apt to disregard
the importance of monetary rectification.  As to who was to control
the more complicated methods of mutual service proposed, the world
money and the world socialism and so forth, there was an even
greater diversity of outlook and an even greater conflict of mental
limitations.  As Desaguliers says in his summary:  "People could
not get out of the sinking social vessels in which they found
themselves for the simple reason that nothing but the imperfectly
assembled phantom of a salvage ship was yet in sight, a large
rudderless, powerless promise, so to speak, standing by."

Only very knowledgeable people could have foretold then how nearly
this phase of throwing out bright but disconnected ideas was
drawing to its end, and how rapidly the consolidation of social and
educational science into an applicable form was to go forward, once
that it had begun.  The rush of correlated social discoveries and
inventions to the rescue of mankind, when at last it was fairly
started, was even more rapid and remarkable than the release of
steam and electrical energy in the nineteenth century.

It went on under difficulties.  Perhaps it was quickened and
purified by those very difficulties.

Gustave De Windt's great work, Social Nucleation (1942), was the
first exhaustive study of the psychological laws underlying team
play and esprit de corps, disciplines of criminal gangs, spirit of
factory groups, crews, regiments, political parties, churches,
professionalisms, aristocracies, patriotisms, class consciousness,
organized research and constructive cooperation generally.  It
did for the first time correlate effectively the increasing
understanding of individual psychology, with new educational
methods and new concepts of political life.  In spite of its
unattractive title and a certain wearisomeness in the exposition,
his book became a definite backbone for the constructive effort of
the new time.

De Windt worked under all the handicap of the intellectual worker
in that uncomfortable time.  Much of his writing, like that of Marx
and Lenin, was done in the British Museum in London, but he was
expelled from England during a phase of xenophobia in 1939, and he
was not allowed to return from Holland to his "beloved Bloomsbury"
until 1941.  He was slightly gassed during the ninth Polish air
raid on Berlin, and this no doubt accelerated his death in
Bloomsbury, the tuberculous London slum in which his book was

Much has been done since to elaborate and correct the broad
generalizations he established.  But his name stands with those of
Plato, Galileo, Newton, Darwin and Robert Owen as marking a real
step forward in the expression and expansion of human ideas.  Such
men are all in their various dimensions something more than
themselves, like stones that have become surveyors' datum marks.
After 1950 De Windt's doctrines and formulæ spread with great
rapidity, in spite of the disturbed state of the world--assisted
and enforced indeed by the disturbed state of the world.

Few people read De Windt nowadays, just as few people read Plato or
Bacon or Charles Darwin or Adam Smith or Karl Marx, but what he
thought has been built into the general outlook of mankind.  What
he established is now platitude, but in his time very much of what
he had to say would still have seemed heresy and fantasy, if it had
not been for the patient massiveness, the Darwinesque patience,
with which he built up his points.

The most important features of his teaching were, first, that he
insisted with an irrefutable rigidity upon the entirely artificial
nature of the content of the social side of a human being.  Men are
born but citizens are made.  A child takes to itself what is
brought to it.  It accepts example, usage, tradition and general
ideas.  All the forms of its social reactions and most of its
emotional interpretations are provided by its education.

"Obviously," the reader will say.  But it is essential to the
understanding of history to realize that before De Windt's time
this was not obvious.  Moral values, bias and prejudice, hatreds
and so forth were supposed to come "by nature."  And consequently
the generation about him had grown up in a clotted mass of outworn
explanations, metaphors, mythologies and misleading incentives, and
the misshapen minds reflected and condoned the misshapen social
order.  His rôle in intellectual history is primarily that of a
strong arm sweeping a terrible litter of encumbrance aside, and
replacing it by a clearly defined structure.  He restored again to
credibility what Plato had first asserted: that, however difficult,
it was possible to begin again at the beginning with uninfected
minds.  And having cleared his ground in this way he proceeded to
build up the imperatives of that sane progressive education and
life for mankind which now opens out about us.

He brought home clearly to the general intelligence firstly that
the monetary method of relationship was essential to any complex
productive society, since it was the only device that could give
personal choice and freedom in return for service.  It liberated
economic relationships.  But money was not a thing in itself, it
was a means to an end, and its treatment was to be judged entirely
by its attainment of that end.  It had indeed grown out of a
barterable commodity, a thing in itself, silver or gold or the
like, but it had ceased to be this, and it was the difficulties in
the transition of money from the former to the latter status that
had released those diseases of the economic system which had in
succession first destroyed the Roman imperialism and then the
European sovereign states.  A completely abstract money, a money as
abstract and free from association with any material substance as
weight or measure, had to be contrived for mankind.  Human society
could not be saved from chaos without it.  It had to be of
worldwide validity; its tokens and notes had to be issued to
maintain a practically invariable price index, and it had to be
protected by the most stringent laws against any form of profit-
making manipulation.  He demonstrated that not merely forgery, but
every form of gambling and speculation, had to be made major
offences under a criminal code.  He showed that usury was
unnecessary.  He unravelled the old entanglements by which new
production had hitherto been saddled with permanent debts for its
promotion and experiments.  He made profit-making banking, that Old
Man of the Sea, get off the back of enterprise.  He eliminated
every excuse for its profits.  Banking was a public function.  The
distribution of credit was a vital part of government.

The New Banking of the Twenty-first Century grew up along the lines
he established for it.  To-day it is our system of public book-
keeping, a part of our state statistical organization, a clearing-
house of obligations and a monetary record of the accumulating
surplus of racial energy, which the world-controls apportion to our
ever expanding enterprises.  It is entirely public and entirely
gratuitous.  It is hard to realize that it was ever allowed to be a
source of private and secret profit.  We register a man's earnings
and spending as we register births and deaths.  Our money is
fundamentally a check on these publicly kept private accounts.

But this desiratum of a sufficiency of invariable money was only a
"foundation need," a quantitative basis for the establishment of
vital relationships, or, in De Windt's terminology, for "social
nucleation."  So soon as money was put in order it ceased to be
necessary to trouble about money, just as it is needless to think
about light and air in a properly lit and ventilated room.

For a couple of centuries before De Windt, the family, which had
been the common social cellule throughout the whole agricultural
age of mankind, had been losing its distinctness, had been
dissolving into larger systems of relationship, more especially in
the Northern and Western communities.  It had been losing its
economic, its mental, and its emotional autonomy at the same time.
In the nineteenth century this dissolution of the family had gone
on very rapidly indeed.  The domestication of women, and their
concentration upon children and the home, had diminished greatly.

By general sentiment, the instinctive factor in family unification
had always been overrated.  In effect, that instinctive bond
dissolves long before the children are thirteen or fourteen.  After
that age the binding force of parent to child and vice versa is not
instinct, but affection, convenience, habit, and tradition.  And
that convenience, usage, and tradition had dwindled.  Put to the
test of exterior attractions, family solidarity had weakened not
only in the West, but also, as Asia had been Westernized, in
Turkey, India, China, and Japan.  This was so essentially, even
more than apparently.  The family home remained generally as a
meeting-place and common domicile for parents and children, but it
ceased to be a vehicle of tradition, it ceased to train and
discipline.  It ceased to do so for the simple reason that these
functions were now discharged with far more emphasis, if with less
intensity, by exterior agencies.  Citizens were begotten in the
home but they were no longer MADE in the home.

De Windt drew a vivid contrast between the home life of a Central
European family in the late eighteenth century, with the father
reading the Bible to his assembled offspring, conducting daily
prayer, watching over, reproving and chastizing his sons and
daughters up to the age of sixteen or seventeen and even
controlling their marriage, and the loosely associated family
structure in the early twentieth century.

This structural dissolution was universally recognized long before
the time of De Windt, but it was left for him to emphasize the need
for a planned "renucleation" in the social magma that arose out of
this dissolution.  The popular school, the experiences and
associations of industrialized production, the daily paper and so
forth, had knocked the strength out of the mental and moral
education of the home and put nothing in its place.  The sapping
forces had not, in their turn, been converted into "organic
forces."  In default of these, minds were lapsing towards crude and
base self-seeking and entirely individualistic aims.

These contemporary emotional suggestions and haphazard ideologies
were not good enough, he preached, to make a human being a
tolerable social unit.  Social tissue was not to be made and
coordinated on such lines.  The stars in their courses were
pointing our race towards the organized world community, the Modern
State, and if ever that goal was to be attained, if the
reorganization of the species was not to collapse, degenerate, and
perish by the wayside, then the individual mind throughout the
world had to be educated, had to be disciplined and equipped,
definitely and sufficiently to this end.  That would not come by
nature.  The social side of the individual had to be oriented
deliberately.  "Society is an educational product."

For the race to get to this Modern State as a whole it had to get
there as so many hundreds of millions of human beings, all
individually aware of that as the general objective at which their
lives aimed.  The Modern State could not arrive as an empty form
with all humanity left behind it.  Every teacher, every writer,
every talker, every two friends who talked together constituted a
potential primary nucleus in a renascent social system.  These
nuclei had to be organized.  Their existence had to be realized,
and they had to be brought into effective cooperation.  It is hard
nowadays to realize that once upon a time such commonplaces as
these were not commonplaces, and that in the very days when De
Windt was writing, multitudes of well-meaning people were
attempting to assemble "movements" for social reconstruction and
world revolution out of the raw, unprepared miscellany of the
contemporary crowd.  It was with extreme reluctance that impatient
reformers turned their minds from impossible coups d'état and
pronunciamentos, strikes against war and booby millennia, to this
necessary systematic preliminary renucleation of the world.  The
immediate task seemed too narrow and intense for them and its
objective too high and remote.  "It is no good asking people what
they want," wrote De Windt.  "That is the error of democracy.  You
have first to think out what they ought to want if society is to be
saved.  Then you have to tell them what they want and see that they
get it."

And further, he urged, if you cannot start nucleation everywhere,
then at least you can start it close at hand.  "Get the nuclei
going.  Be yourself a nucleus."  From the beginning of life, nuclei
have begotten nuclei.  The Modern State, which had to be evoked
everywhere, could be begun anywhere.

Another point that was new in his time, so far as Western
civilization went, was his insistence upon the greater importance
of adolescent education and his denial of the primary right of the
parent to shape his offspring according to his fancy.  The
"renucleation" of society had to be complete.  The "nuclei" which
were ultimately to become the sole educational and disciplinary
units of a new-born society would be in the first place, and
usually, intensive study circles and associations for moral and
physical training.  Their social and political activities were to
be secondary exercises, subordinated to a primary mental, moral and
bodily training.  He searched the social disorder about him for
favourable conditions for the pioneer nucleations.  He looked to
factories, laboratories, technical schools, public services,
hospital staffs, to banded men and women of all sorts, for the
material for his nucleation.  He insisted that the impulse to build
up a social order was instinctive.  Wherever there was social
confusion the crude efforts to get together into a new directive
order appeared.

He pointed to the Sokols, Nazis, Fascists, Communist Party members,
Kuomintang members of his time, as the first primitive intimations
of the greater organization that was coming.  They had the spirit
of an élite class, although they wasted it more or less upon the
loyalties and prejudices of the past.  People are not leading these
young men, he argued; "they are taking advantage of the instinctive
needs of these young men.  Try to realize what it is that they are--
however blindly--seeking."

Like St. Paul, the founder of Christianity, speaking to the
Athenians--he quotes the passage--he said:  "That Unknown God, whom
ignorantly ye worship, him declare I unto you."  He was declaring
the as yet unknown Modern State.

Intensively De Windt's teaching was a theory of education;
extensively it was the assertion of the Modern State.  These were
inseparable aspects of the same thing.  "A community is an
education in action," he declared.  And with a complete continuity
he carried up his scheme of social structure through every variety
of productive organization, control and enterprise.  Men were to
"fall in and serve this end."

Borrowing a word from Ortega y Gasset, but going boldly beyond that
original thinker, he declared that "plenitude" of life was now only
to be attained by living in relation to the Modern State.  All
other living was "waste, discontent and sorrow."  It was becoming
impossible to retain self-respect, to be happy within oneself,
unless one was "all in" upon that one sound objective.  The old
loyalties, to flag, to nation, to class, were outworn and
discredited.  They had become unreal.  They did not call out all
that was in a man, because now we saw their limitations.  They
could no longer keep up the "happy turgidity" of life.  They could
not be served "with a sure and untroubled soul".  They would
certainly leave a man in the end "deflated, collapsed into an
aimless self".  In the past men could live and live fully within
their patriotisms and their business enterprises, because they knew
no better.  But now they knew better.

Finally De Windt set himself diametrically against one of the
direst concepts of Parliamentary Democracy, a concept that still
had enormous influence in his time, and that was the idea of the
"Opposition."  "Criticize," he wrote, "yes, but do not obstruct."
If a directive organization is fundamentally bad, he taught, break
it and throw it away, but rid your minds altogether of a conception
of see-saw and give and take as a proper method in human affairs.
The Parliamentary gang Governments, that were then in their last
stage of ineptitude, were rotten with the perpetual amendment and
weakening of measures, with an endless blocking and barring of
projects, with enfeebling bargains and blackmailing concessions.
Against every directive body, every party in power, sat another
devoting itself to misrepresenting, thwarting, delaying, and
spoiling, often for no reason or for the flimsiest reasons, merely
for the sake of misrepresenting, thwarting, delaying and spoiling
what the governing body was attempting to do, in the hope of
degrading affairs to such a pitch of futility as to provoke a
change of government that would bring the opposition into power.
The opportunities of profit and advancement afforded in such a
mental atmosphere to a disingenuous careerist were endless.

All this tangle of ideas had to be swept aside.  "About most
affairs there can be no two respectable and antagonistic opinions,"
said De Windt.  "It is nonsense to pretend there can be.  There is
one sole right way and there are endless wrong ways of doing
things.  A government is trying to go the right way or it is
criminal.  Sabotage must cease.  It has always been one of the
ugliest vices of advanced movements.  It is a fundamental social

His discussion of the difference between Criticism and Opposition
is one of those classics that few people read.  It is a pity,
because it is a very good specimen of twentieth-century English
prose.  The right to criticize and the duty of well-wrought
criticism are fundamental to modern citizenship.  He considered how
that right and duty had been ignored by the shallow mentality of
Italian Fascism and how fatally they had been entangled with the
suppression of malignancy in Russia.  He analysed the reckless
irresponsibility of censorship in the Western communities.  There
was no law anywhere to restrain conspiracies, on the part of
religious, political, or business bodies, for the suppression of
publications.  His warnings against the suppression of opinion were
not so immediately effective as his general revolutionary project.
Many people did not realize what he was driving at.  In practice
the conflict of world order with the opposition spirit, during the
struggle to maintain the Air Dictatorship, was to lapse again and
again into the suppression of honest criticism.  In practice it was
found that criticism and suggestion passed by insensible degrees
into incitement and insurrectionary propaganda.

This clear-cut revolutionary scheme of De Windt's was vividly new
and tonic to the energetic young men of the middle twentieth
century.  We summarize here its main constructive conceptions in
spite of its present platitudinousness.  It is unnecessary to tell
in any detail his far-sighted schemes to link his nuclei into a
world propaganda, because by insensible degrees that organization
has grown into the educational system of our world to-day.  This
history and indeed every text book in use in the world could
well be dedicated to him.  And his complex and very detailed
anticipations of the process of a world revolution need not detain
us here (his Book V, The New World in the Body of the Old contains
most of this), because we can now tell of that vast reconstruction

In some respects he was remarkably prescient, in others he
estimated human reactions inaccurately and even incorrectly.  The
reconstruction of human affairs involved some very rough work from
which he would have recoiled.  None the less he put all the main
structural factors in the establishment of the Modern State so
plainly and convincingly before his fellow-men that soon thousands
and presently millions were living for that vision, were bringing
it out of thought into reality.  He made it seem so like destiny,
that it became destiny.

For some years his views spread very slowly.  An increasing number
of people knew about them, but at first very few made serious
efforts to realize them.  One man after another would say, "But
this is right!" and then "But this is impossible!"  De Windt was
dead before his school of thought became a power in the world.
Like Karl Marx, he was never to know of the harvest he had sown.

In our description of the failure of the League of Nations we have
noted how foredoomed that experiment was, because nowhere among
either the influential men of the time nor among the masses was
there any sense of the necessity and the necessary form of a new
world order.  The statesmen, diplomatists and politicians of the
time impress us as almost incredibly blind to things that are as
plain as daylight to us now, and it is hard for us to believe that
that blindness was not wilful.  It was not.  They could not see it.
We read their speeches at conference after conference until their
voices die away at last in the rising tide of disaster and we
almost cry out as we read:  "You idiots!  Wasn't world control
there just under your noses?  And was anything else but disaster

The answer is that it was not precisely under their noses.  Slowly,
laboriously, with perpetual repetitions and slight variations, the
Obvious had to be got into and spread and diffused in the human
mind.  It is De Windt's peculiar claim to human gratitude, not that
he discovered anything fresh, but that he so built up and fortified
the Obvious, that not the most subtle and disingenuous mind, nor
the biggest fool who ever sentimentalized and spouted, could escape
honestly from its inexorable imperatives.

2.  Thought and Action: the New Model of Revolution

It is a wholesome check upon individual pride that no single man
and indeed no single type of man is able both to conceive and carry
through the simplest of our social operations.  Even the man who
cultivates the earth and grows food cannot make the productive
implements he uses or select the seeds and plants that yield him
increase.  Defoe's queer story of Robinson Crusoe is an impossibly
hopeful estimate of what a single man, with only a little flotsam
and jetsam from the outer world, and in unusually benign climatic
conditions, on a desert island could contrive to do for his own
comfort and security.  Still more does this interdependence of men
and different types apply to the complex processes that now, in
this Age of Maximum Insecurity, were demanded, if the new
generation was to escape from the economic and institutional
wreckage amidst which it found itself, and create the social order
in which we live to-day.

First came the intellectuals, men living aloof from responsibility,
men often devoid of the qualities of leadership and practical
organization.  Like De Windt they planned everything and achieved
no more than a plan.  Such men are primarily necessary in the human
adventure, because they build up a sound diagnosis of events; they
reveal more and more clearly and imperatively the course that lies
before the race and in that task their lives are spent and
justified.  Then it is that the intelligent executive type, capable
of concentration upon a complex idea once it is grasped, and
resisting discursiveness as a drag on efficiency, comes into
action.  Their imaginative limitation is a necessary virtue for
the task they have to do.  No man can administer a province
successfully if he is always wandering beyond its frontiers.  The
rather unimaginative forcible type is the necessary executive of a
revolution, and the benefit of the revolution is entirely dependent
upon the soundness of the ideology with which he has been loaded.

Because of this necessity for complementary types of revolutionary,
history does not produce any modern equivalents to the legendary
figures of Solon, Moses or Confucius in its story of the coming of
the Modern State.  De Windt was not so much a creator as a
summarizer, a concentrator, a lens that gathered to a burning focus
the accumulating mental illumination of his day.

The light of understanding that lit the fires of this last
revolution came from no single brain.  It came from ten thousand
active and devoted minds, acting and reacting upon one another,
without order or precedence; it was like the growth of physical and
biological science that preceded it, something that happened as a
whole, something that happened not in any single consciousness but
in the consciousness of the race.

We have already noted how far back the first germination of the
World-State idea can be traced; we have shown how the forces of
economic life drove towards it in the nineteenth century.  We have
displayed it working as a quasi-instinctive aspiration in the
brains of Henry Ford and Woodrow Wilson.  With De Windt's Social
Nucleation we see it made concrete, with all its essential
structures projected and all its necessary conditions laid down, a
practicable proposal.  The World-State has ceased to be a cloudy
aspiration and it has become a plan.  Forceful men could adopt it.

A distinct change in the quality of those who were promoting the
movement for the Modern State became very evident even before the
War Cycle of the Forties.  It was now sufficiently "thought out"
for men of resolute character to incorporate it in their personal
lives.  It was passing over from the reflective to the energetic
types.  Its earliest propagandists had been largely reflective and
practically ineffective individuals; a miscellany of pacificists
whose dread and detestation of war was overwhelming and who had
the intelligence to realize that war can only be avoided by
establishing a World Pax; a number of writers, "pure" scientific
workers, young sociologists, economists and the like and
"intellectuals" from the working class movement.  Now a multitude
of engineers, architects, skilled foremen and industrial
organizers, technicians of all sorts, business men and captains of
industry, were also beginning to "talk Modern State" and put in an
increasing proportion of their time and attention to its advocacy.

The transition is easily explicable.  The increasing social
disorder was driving men of the vigorous practical type out of
satisfactory employment.  During the First Age of Prosperity, and
during the false recovery after the World War, such men had been
able to find ample work agreeable to their temperaments in the
immense industrial developments of the time.  They had organized
great businesses, vast production; they had exploited the incessant
stream of inventions; they had opened up the natural resources of
hitherto backward regions.  They had carried production far beyond
the consuming power of human society.  So long as all this
enterprise could go on, it did not seem necessary to them to
trouble about the political and monetary methods of their world.
Now and then some of them showed a certain restiveness at the
banking network; our typical original-minded industrial Henry Ford,
for instance, had two vigorous tussles with the bankers during his
career; but generally the phenomena of political and financial
strangulation only began to compel their serious attention after
the great Hoover Slump (the Thirty Year Slump) was well under way.

Then they began to think, talk and write about the social order
with the energy of men accustomed to handle large affairs and work
for immediate tangible results.  The vast experiment of Soviet
Russia aroused their technical jealousy and a sort of envious
impatience both at its opportunities and its incapacities.  And the
young men coming on from the abundant technical schools of the
time, stirred by the books and talk and omnipresent hopes and
memories of the immediate past, and looking for adventure and
achievement in material enterprise, realized very rapidly that the
lights of opportunity upon their paths were being turned down in a
manner at once mysterious and exasperating.

The revolutionary movement in the nineteenth century had seemed to
such men a tiresomeness of slacking workers, aided and abetted by
critics like Ruskin, artists like William Morris, playwrights like
Bernard Shaw and suchlike impracticable and unconvincing people.
It was associated in their minds with sham Gothic, yellow-green
draperies, long hair, anti-vivisection and vegetarianism.  There
was scarcely a man of scientific or technical eminence on the
revolutionary side before 1900.  But by the third decade of the
twentieth century two-thirds of the technicians, scientific workers
and able business organizers were talking active revolution.  It
was no longer to be a class insurrection of hands; it was to be a
revolt of the competent.  Their minds were feeling round for ideas.
They found in such books as De Windt's exactly what they wanted.
They began to set about the evocation of the Modern World-State in
no uncertain fashion.

A revolution in revolutionary ideas had occurred.  The protean
spirit of Revolution had cut its hair, put on blue overalls, made
blue prints for itself, created a New Model, and settled down to
work in a systematic fashion.

3.  The Technical Revolutionary

The existence of this large number of scientific and technical
workers in the Western communities and their rapid and lively
apprehension of the breakdown about them is one of the profoundest
differences between the second and the first Decline and Fall.

We find no real equivalent at all to them in the Roman story.
There were great numbers of artisans without any science, steeped
in tradition; and quite out of touch with these artisans there were
a few small groups of ineffective philosophers whose speculations
were finally swamped by the synthesis of Christianity.  Artisan and
philosopher were in different worlds.  The philosopher has left it
on record that he despised the artisan.  Probably the artisan
despised the philosopher in equal measure so far as he knew about
him; but he has not left it on record.  Neither artisan nor
philosopher seem to have had any awareness of the broad social
forces that were destroying the common security in which they went
about their affairs, and turning the Empire into a battling ground
for barbarian adventurers.

It is doubtful if at any time the imperial court or the imperial
civil service had any real conception of any sustained decline.
Nineteenth- and twentieth-Century historians, as Ogilvy and Freud
point out in their Roman History (2003 and revised by Pan Chow
Liang 2047), were all too apt to imagine an up-to-date intelligence
for such emperors as Julius Cæsar, Octavius, Marcus Aurelius or
Domitian.  They represented them as scheming and planning on almost
modern lines.  But there is no proof of any such awareness in the
Latin record.  One large element in that old Roman world that would
surely have displayed some sense of the needs of the time, if
anywhere there had been that sense, was the universally present
building industry.  It did hold on in a way throughout the decline
and fall, but consciously it did nothing politically.

Students are still working out the preservation and continuation of
the art and mystery of the masons into the middle ages.  There was
a great loss of knowledge but also a real survival.  The medieval
free-masons who built those flimsy but often quite beautiful Gothic
cathedrals it is now such a task to conserve, carried on a
tradition that had never really broken with that of the pyramid
builders.  But they had no sense of politics.  They had a tradition
of protective guild association similar to the Trade Unions of the
Capitalist age, they interfered in local affairs in order to make
jobs for themselves, but there is no sign that at any time they
concerned themselves with the order and stability of the community
as a whole.  Their horizons were below that level of intelligence.

Now the skilled and directive men of the collapsing order of the
twentieth century were of an altogether livelier quality.  Their
training was not traditional but progressive, far more progressive
than that of any other class.  They were inured to fundamental
changes in scope, method and material.  They ceased to be
acquiescent in the political and financial life about them directly
they found their activities seriously impeded.  Simultaneously with
the outbreak of that very expressive and significant word
"Technocracy" in the world's Press (1932-33) we find, for instance,
a Professor of Engineering, Professor Miles Walker, at a meeting of
the British Association for the Advancement of Science, boldly
arraigning the whole contemporary order by the standards of
engineering efficiency.  Everywhere in that decadence, amidst that
twilight of social order, engineers, industrialists and professors
of physical science were writing and talking constructive policies.
They were invading politics.  We have already noted the name of
Professor Soddy as one of the earlier men of science who ceased to
"mind his own business", and took up business psychology.

At first these technicians and business men were talking at large.
They did not immediately set about doing things; they still assumed
that the politicians and monetary authorities were specialists with
sound and thorough knowledge in their own departments, as capable
of invention and adaptation as themselves; so that they did no more
than clamour for decisive action--not realizing that the very
conditions under which bankers and politicians lived made them
incapable of varying their methods in any fundamental fashion.  But
this grew plain as disaster followed disaster.  A new type had to
assume authority if new methods were to be given a fair chance.
New methods of government must oust the old.  An increasing
proportion of the younger men, abandoning all ideas of loyalty to
or cooperation with the old administrative institutions, and with
an ever clearer consciousness of their objective, set themselves to
organize nuclei after the De Windt pattern and to link these up
with other nuclei.

The movement spread from workshop to workshop and from laboratory
to laboratory with increasing rapidity all over the world.  Al
Haran estimated that already in 1960 seven-eighths of the aviators
were Modern State men, and most of the others he says were "at
least infected with these same ideas".  Such infection went far and

Wherever there was little or no repression the development of this
movement to salvage civilization went on openly.  But to begin with
it encountered some very serious antagonisms.  The military element
had always been disposed to regard the man of science and the
technician as a gifted sort of inferior.  The soldier in his
panoply ordered them to do their tricks, and they did their tricks.
That was the idea.  The behaviour of both types during the World
War did much to confirm this assumption of their docility.
The Peace of Versailles came before there was any serious
disillusionment.  The nineteenth-century scientific man had been a
very lopsided man; often he had proved himself a poor conventional
snob outside his particular investigations.

"The sciences," as Simon Azar remarked, "came before Science"; the
scientific outlook was a late result and not a primary cause of the
systematic pursuit of knowledge.  It was a discovery and not a
starting point.  Science taught the men who served it, and the
pupil learnt more than the teacher knew.  There was and is an
incessant conflict in the scientific world between achievement and
fresh enquiry, and in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries
it was acute.  The older men suspected younger men with broader
ideas and hindered their advancement.  They wanted them all to work
in specialist blinkers.  But after the World War the world of pure
and applied science found itself obliged to think about things in
general, and, as the Great Slump went on without surcease, it
thought hard.  The technicians, because of their closer approach to
business and practical affairs generally, were considerably in
advance of the "pure" scientific investigators in this application
of constructive habits of thought to political and social

Even during the Chinese warfare there were intimations that
chemists, engineers and doctors might have different ideas from the
military.  After the Tokio sterilization fiasco, and still more so
after the failure of the eleventh gas offensive upon Wuchang to
produce adequate results, the Japanese military authorities began
to enquire into the possibility of "expert sabotage", and their
enquiries had a certain repercussion upon the relations of
"scientific" military men to real scientific and technical experts
in Europe.  There was an attempt to distinguish between experts who
were "loyal" and experts who were "subversive".  More often than
not it was the latter who were the brilliant and inventive men.
Uncritical loyalty was found to go with a certain general dullness.
The authorities found themselves in a dilemma between men who could
not do what was wanted of them and men who would not.

A campaign against pacificist, disturbing and revolutionary ideas
had been gathering force during the thirties.  It became a confused
and tiresome persecution in the later forties.  But it was
ineffective because it was incoherent.  Attempts to weed the staffs
and students of technical schools and to reduce the teaching
profession to docility failed, because there seemed to be no way of
distinguishing what was essential science from what was treasonable
thought.  The attempt to destroy freedom in one part of a man's
brain while leaving other parts to move freely and creatively was
doomed to failure from the outset.

4.  Prophets, Pioneers, Fanatics and Murdered Men

History, especially general history, is prone to deal too much with
masses and outlines.  We write that "all Germany" resented an
insult, or the "hopes of Asia" fell.  But the living facts of
history are changes in thought, emotion and reaction in the minds
of thousands of millions of lives.

In the preceding sections we have spoken in general terms of
"concepts of combination" developing; of ideologies dissolving and
giving place to other ideologies like clouds that gather and melt
and pass across the mental skies of mankind.  In the books before
those sections we traced the growing awareness of a possible World-
State in the thoughts of men throughout two thousand years of slow
awakening.  But the presentation is incomplete until we have turned
our attention, for a chapter at least, from the broad sweep of
opinion and the changing determination of the collective will, to
the texture of individual experiences, the brain storms, the
tormented granules, which shaped out these massive structural

One must draw upon the naive materials of one's own childhood to
conceive, however remotely, the states of mind of those rare
spirits who looked first towards human brotherhood.  One must
consider the life of some animal, one's dog, one's cheetah or one's
pony, to realize the bounded, definite existence of a human being
in the early civilizations.  The human life then was just as set in
its surroundings as any animal's.  There was the town, the river,
the cultivations, the distant hills, the temple, near friends and
strange distant enemies constituting a complete and satisfying ALL.
The gods were credible and responsible, taking all ultimate
responsibility off your shoulders; the animals had souls like
yourself, as understandable as yourself, and the darkness and
shadows were haunted by spirits.  In that sort of setting
innumerable generations lived and loved and hated and died.
Everything was made familiar and understandable by the trick of
personification.  You brought the stranger into your family; you
made it a member of your group.  Earth was a mother and the sun a
great father of glory marching across the sky.

It is a marvellous intricate history to trace how the human mind
began to doubt, to pry and question, to penetrate the curtains of
assurance and fancied security that enclosed it.  Perhaps it was
rather torn out of its confidence than that it fretted its way out
by any urgency of its own.

The Hebrew Bible, which Christianity preserved for us, is a
precious record of uneasy souls amidst the limited conditions of
these ages before mechanism or travel or logical analysis.  It
tells how man came out of the Eden of unquestioning acceptance and
found perplexity.  It gives us intimate glimpses of states of mind
that were typical of what went on in hundreds of thousands of
struggling brains.  They were beginning to note thorns and weeds,
toil and the insecurity of life.  They made great efforts to
explain their growing sense that all was not right with the
world.  They had to dramatize the story.  They had as yet only
"personification" as a means of apprehending relations and causes.
They had no way of getting hold of a general idea except by
imagining it as a person.  Strange thoughts frightened them.  They
seemed exterior to them.  They dared not even say "I think"; they
had to say "I heard a voice" or the "Word of the Lord came to me".
Enormous effort therefore was needed to pass from the thought of a
patriarchal tribal God to a mightier overriding God.  Men did not
unite communities; they identified their Gods.  Monotheism was the
first form of the World-State in men's minds.

What a desperate deed it was for some inwardly terrified man to
lift up his voice against the local elders and the local idol,
proclaiming "There is no God but God."  The reactions of his
fellows, living still within the framework of accepted beliefs, to
this attempt to break out to wide relations, were scorn, amusement,
irritation, dislike or horror and superstitious fear.  We have the
story of Mohammed recorded, and of his fight with the gods of
Mecca, but that was a late and sophisticated instance of something
that happened in innumerable times and places; the challenge of the
man "inspired" by his new idea to the social mental nest out of
which he was breaking.

Men who saw the light and spoke, were only one species of a larger
genus of human beings whose minds worked differently from the
common man's or were simply more feverishly active.  The others
were eccentrics or downright madmen.  One sort was hardly to be
told from another, for both were sayers of incredible things.

The beginning of written record in the millennium before Christ
shows a long tradition already established for the treatment of
these odd, disturbing exceptions.  So far as we can peer into the
past we find the tranquillity of the everyday community broken by
these troubled troublesome individuals who went about, living
queerly, saying unusual and disconcerting things, inciting people
to behave strangely, threatening divine anger, foreboding evils.
There was a disposition to buy them off with a sort of reverence--
and disregard.  Inferior and unhappy people might find an interest
and excitement in their strange announcements and suggestions.  But
rulers did not like them, comfortable people disliked and feared
them.  They irritated, they terrified contented people.  They
seemed perverse, and many of them plainly were perverse.  If they
went too far mankind turned on them and they were ill-treated and
mobbed and ridiculed; they were cast into prisons; beaten and

The ones that mattered most seemed always, by our present
standards, to have had something to say that was at once profoundly
important and yet not quite true or not quite truly said.
Disciples, sometimes in great multitude, respond to their
enigmatical utterances.  When they died or were killed men were
left asking, "What exactly did he say?  What exactly did he mean?"
The inspired words became very readily riddles for interpreters and
matter for pedantry.  They were phrased and rephrased, applied and
misapplied, tried out in every possible and impossible way.

Nowadays we find a common quality in all these madmen, prophets,
teachers and disturbers of the mental peace.  The species was
learning to talk and use language.  The race was, as it were,
trying to think something out; was attempting to say something new
and enlarging to itself.  It was doing this against great
resistance.  Its intellectual enterprise was playing against its
instinctive fear of novelty.  Some of these teachers died terribly,
were flayed or burnt or tortured to death.  One hung on a cross and
died of physical weakness some hours before the two felons who were
his hardier fellow sufferers, leaving a teaching compounded of such
sweet and fine ideas of conduct, such mystical incomprehensibleness,
such misleading inconsistency, that it remained a moral stimulus and
an intellectual perplexity, a jungle for heresies and discoveries,
for millions of souls for two millennia.

Vainly does one try nowadays to put ourself into the mind of the
prophet led to execution.  We know the value of what he did, it is
true, but what did he think he was doing?  The secret of such
personifying, urgently seeking brains seems hidden from us now for

In the busier and more prosperous social phases of history such
disturbers are less evident; in times of change, and especially
when there was also a release of social energy, when conflicting
traditions ground and wore upon each other, these troubled and
troublesome minds seemed to have multiplied.  The days of the vast
unstable Roman imperialism abounded in efforts to say something new
and profound about life.  Everywhere there were new worships,
because a worship still seemed the only form in which a new idea
and way of life could be conveyed from mind to mind.  Everywhere
the puzzled sprawling human race was trying to say something, some
magic word to resolve its perplexities and guide it to peace.

With the Renascence of learning and the onset of organized science
the actual number and the actual proportion of enquiring and
innovating minds increased greatly.  The effort of the racial
mind to master the conditions of its being was renewed on a
multitudinous scale.  But now the disturbers of equanimity no
longer appear as wild-eyed prophets; they no longer claim that the
Word of the Lord is upon them.  Abstract and logical thought has
pervaded the mind of the race and such personification is no longer
needed.  They do not denounce the old gods; they analyse them.
Moreover, now that we approach modern times and deal with more and
more abundantly recorded events, we begin to realize with a living
understanding and sympathy what was going on in the minds of the
innovators and to feel in touch with the immeasurable heroisms and
innumerable tragedies of those later pioneers, those rebels,
critics, revolutionaries who were thrusting, more or less
intelligently, against the acceptances and inertias amidst which
they lived, towards a saner, more comprehensive and more clearly
apprehended racial idea.

So far no completely masterly digest has been made of the millions
of biographies and tons of other material that tell of the mental
seething of the world from the seventeenth century of the Christian
Era onward.  If the old world prophets are too rare and remote for
our understanding, the modern revolutionaries are almost too close
and abundant for us to stand back and see them clearly.  Vast
studies have been organized of various portions of the field; Roger
Cuddington and his associates' Studies of Protestant Thought in
Holland, the Rhineland, Switzerland and Britain from the
Seventeenth to the Nineteenth Century give, for instance, a picture
of one wide area and period, in which the fermentation arose first
in a religious form and owed much to the clash of Jew and Gentile;
while Margrim's Early Forms of Anarchism and Socialism is a very
successful attempt to realize the ideas and personalities from
which the modern criticism of rule and property derived.  With the
help of such works as these, and with some luck among the
biographies, we do contrive at last to get down close to an
imaginative participation in those individual reactions, which in
the aggregate remade the human community in the form we know to-

Every one of these personal stories, if it were told completely,
would have to begin with a child, taking the world for granted,
believing its home, its daddy and mummy to be right and eternal.
It confronted a fixed and established world with no standard of
comparison in past or future.  It was told its place in life and
what it had to do.  Bad luck, discomfort, some shock or some innate
unrest was needed to put a note of interrogation against these
certainties.  Then for those whom destiny has marked for
disturbance comes the suspicion:  "This that they have told me
isn't true."  Still more disturbing came the possibility:  "This
that they do and want me to do isn't right."  And then with a
widening reference:  "Things could be better than this."  So the
infected individual drifted out of easy vulgar living with his
fellows, out of a natural animal-like acceptance of the established
thing, to join the fermenting and increasing minority of troubled
minds that made trouble.

He began talking to his fellows or he made notes in secret of his
opinions.  He asked awkward questions.  He attempted little
comments and ironies.  We could conjure up hundreds of thousands of
pictures of such doubters beginning to air their opinions in the
eighteenth-century world, in the little workshops of the time, in
shabby, needy homes, in market places, in village inns, daring to
say something, hardly daring to say anything, unable often to join
up the vague objections they were making into any orderly
criticism.  But in the brown libraries and studies of the period
other men were sitting, poring over books, writing with something
furtive in their manner, while the pride of contemporary life
brayed and trumpeted along the roadway outside.  "What is being
told to the people is not true.  Things could be better than this."
Men ventured on strange suggestions in university classes; brought
out startlingly unorthodox theses.

The infectious interrogations spread.  Constituted authority got
wind of these questionings and itself came questioning in search of
heresy and sedition, with rack and thumbscrew.  When we read the
books and pamphlets of that awakening phase, writings which seem
amidst profuse apologies to half say next to nothing, we get the
measure of the reasonable timidities of the time.  Men might pay in
sweating agony and death for that next-to-nothing they had said.

At first they raised not so much the substance as the form of an
interrogation.  In the sixteenth century you would have found a
number of local accumulations of heresies, but hardly any inkling
of the Modern State.  Except for some scholar's echo to the
Republic or Laws of Plato, there was no one at all reading and
comparing in the field of social and political structure before the
seventeenth century.  The eighteenth century was, in comparison
with its predecessor, an age of voluminous revolutionary thought.
Men began calling fundamental ideas and political institutions in
question as they had never been challenged since the onset of
Christianity.  They went into exile for their innovations; their
books were burnt; censorships were established to suppress these
new ideas.  Still they spread and multiplied.  The authoritative
claim of aristocracy, the divinity of monarchy, tarnished,
dwindled, became ineffective under these dripping notes of
interrogation.  Republics appeared and the first embryonic
intimations of socialism.

In our account of the first French Revolution and the revolutionary
perturbation of the eighteenth century [No traces of this account
are to be found in Raven's papers.--Ed.] we have had to
discriminate between the economic and social forces that were
forcing political readjustment on the one hand, and the influence
of new ideas on the other.  We have shown how little these formal
changes were planned, and how small a share in these events is to
be ascribed to creative intention or mental processes generally.
Nevertheless the questioning was drawing closer to reality and the
scope of the planning was spreading.  We will not tell again of the
profound change in men's ideas about private property, private
freedom and monetary relationship, that began to find expression in
the socialist and communist movements of the age.  Our concern here
is to emphasize the billions of small wrangles that were altering
the collective thought, to summon out of the past, for an instant,
an elfin clamour of now silenced voices that prepared the soil for
revolution, the not-at-all-lucid propagandists at street corners,
the speakers in little meeting-houses, in open spaces and during
work intermissions; to recall the rustle of queer newspapers that
were not quite ordinary newspapers; and the handicapped book
publications that were everywhere fighting traditional and
instinctive resistances.  Everywhere the leaven of the Modern State
was working--confusedly.

As we have seen, the new conception of a single world society did
not come at one blow, perfect and effective, into the human mind.
It was not completed even in outline until the days of De Windt,
and before that time it was represented by a necessary confusion of
contributory material, incomplete bits of it and illogical and
misleading extensions of those bits.  It had to begin like that; it
had to begin in fragments and rashly.  There was always a fierce
disposition manifested to apply the new incomplete ideas, headlong
and violently.  The more the sense of insufficiency gnaws at a
man's secret consciousness, the more he is in conflict with an
inner as well as an outer antagonist, the more emphatic, dogmatic
and final he is apt to be.  That disposition to bring the new ideas
to the test of reality, the urge to assert by experiment, was the
chief source of trouble for these ever increasing multitudes, of
innovating minds.  Constituted authority, established usage, have
no quarrel with ideas as such; it is only when these ideas become
incitation, when they sought incarnation in act and reality, that
conflict began.

So all over the world throughout the nineteenth century men were to
be found contriving trouble for authority and devising outrages on
usage.  The light of world reconstruction lit their souls, but
often it filtered through thick veils of misconception and had the
colourings of some epidemic hate.  They dreamt of insurrections, of
seizures of power, of organized terror; in practice their efforts
dwindled down too often to stupid little murders--often completely
irrelevant murders--to shouting and swarming in the streets, to
peltings and window-breaking, to blowing in the front doors of
government houses and embassies, to the casting of explosives
amidst the harmless spectators at public ceremonies.

Before the French Revolution there was not nearly so much of such
sporadic violence as afterwards.  There were a few assassinations
by religious or racial fanatics, but usually the older type of
political crime was definitely connected with some conspiracy to
change the personnel rather than the nature of a régime.  The
"Anarchist" outrages of the nineteenth century, however clumsy,
were by comparison social criticisms.  Behind them, even though
vague, exaggerated and distorted, was the hope of a new world

Linked inseparably with all these premature expressions of the
desire for a new life were the activities of more extensive
revolutionary systems: printing-presses in cellars, furtive
distribution of papers, secret meetings, the savage discipline of
fear-ruled illegal societies, the going to and fro of emissaries--
men often with narrow and ill-assorted minds, but nevertheless men
with everything to lose and little to gain or hope for by such
activities.  After we have allowed for every sort of resentment and
bitter impulse in them, the fact remains such men were devotees.
They were a necessary ferment for the spread of thought.

That increasing revolutionary ferment, in all its tentative
aspects, used to be called The Extreme Left.  There had never been
anything quite like it in the world before.  For the most part
these men had broken not only with the political and social order
of their time, but with its religious beliefs.  Between 1788 and
1965, hundreds of thousands of men and thousands of women, far
braver than any Moslem fanatics, sustained by no hope of a future
life, no hope of any greeting after the sudden blankness of their
untimely deaths, and, so far as we can gather now, not even with a
clear vision of the full and ordered social life for which they
died, stood up sullenly or with a certain sad exaltation to face
the firing party or the halter.  A hundred times as many endured
exile, prisons, ostracisms, beatings, gross humiliations and the
direst poverty for the still dimly apprehended cause of human

They had not even the assurance of unanimity.  They were all
convinced that there had to be a better world, but they had not
the knowledge, they had not the facilities for free and open
discussion, to clear up and work out the inevitable outline of
their common need.  They formulated their ideas dully and clumsily;
they went a certain way to truth and then stopped short; they
suspected all other formulæ than the ones they themselves had hit
upon; they quarrelled endlessly, bitterly, murderously, among
themselves.  Nearly all sooner or later were infected by hate.
Often it happened that two men, each of whom had roughly half the
justice of things in him, killed each other, when indeed they
needed only to put their prepossessions together to get the full
outline of a working reconstruction.

Da Silva has called all those who made the revolutions and
revolutionary efforts that occurred between 1788 and 1948 the
"revolutionaries of the half-light".  His studies of the tangled
history of the new social concepts that broke through to open
popular discussion, only after the establishment of the Soviet
régime in Russia in 1917, constitute a very brilliant work of
elucidation and simplification.  It is a history of twilight that
ends at dawn.  In the twenties and thirties of the twentieth
century the ordinary man in the street was discussing, cheaply
perhaps, but freely, ideas, possibilities and courses of action
that no one would have dared to whisper about, would scarcely have
dared to think about, two centuries before.  He scarcely knew a
single name of the pioneers, fanatics and desperadoes who had won
this freedom for his mind.

The nature of the conflict was changing.  That was very plain by
1940.  Where there had been pioneers, there were now systematic
explorers and surveyors; the teeming multitudes of our race were
still producing devoted and sacrificial types, but the half light
was now a cloudy daylight and the ordered analyses and plans of
such men as De Windt were making understandings and cooperations
possible that would have been incredible in the nineteenth century.
In the nineteenth century revolution was suspected, forbidden,
dark, criminal, desperate and hysterical.  In the twentieth century
it became candid and sympathetic.  The difference was essentially
an intellectual one; after a vast period of stormy disputation the
revolutionary idea had cleared up.  The sun of the Modern State
broke through.

Revolution still demanded its martyrs, but the martyrdoms were
henceforth of a different character.  Biographies of revolutionists
before the Great War go on by night, amidst a scenery of back
streets, cellars, prisons, suspicions and betrayals.  Biographies
of revolutionists in the final struggle to establish the Modern
State go on in full daylight.  It is reaction now which has taken
to the darkness, to plots, assassinations, and illegal measures.
The Modern State propagandist became less and less like an
insurgent individual of some alien subject race; he became more and
more like a missionary in savage country, ill-armed or unarmed, and
at an immediate disadvantage, but with the remote incalculable
prestige of a coming power behind him.

The later death-roll of revolutionaries has fewer and fewer
executions in it and an increasing tale of assassinations and
deaths in public conflict.  A larger and larger proportion of those
who died for it were killed either by mobs or in fair and open
fighting.  And soon the idea of the Modern State had become so
pervasive that the battles ceased to be for it or against it; they
became, rather, misunderstandings between impatient zealots with a
common end.  In many conflicts the historian is still perplexed to
determine which side, if either, can be counted as fighting for the
Modern State.

The analyses of De Windt made immense charities of understanding
possible.  Creative-minded men, though they hardened against the
liar and the cheat, became less and less willing to fight the
puerile adherent and the honest fanatic with a tiresome but
honestly intended formula.  "There," they said, "but for certain
misconceptions and resolvable obsessions go our men," and set
themselves at any risk or loss to the task of conversion.  Just as
Fascism in its time seized upon the ancient terroristic and
blackmailing Mafia in Sicily and partly annexed it, partly changed
it and so superseded it, just as the Nazi movement incorporated
large chunks of the Communist party in its efforts to reformulate
Germany, so now the Modern State fellowship grappled with the
world-wide series of organizations which had superseded democratic
institutions nearly everywhere, made every effort to capture the
imaginations of their adherents, and showed the most unscrupulous
boldness in seizing their direction whenever it could.  The Modern
State Movement differed from every preceding revolutionary movement
in its immense assimilating power, due to the clearness of the
objectives it set before men's minds.

The difference between the revolutionary before the Great War and
the revolutionary after that illuminating crisis is closely
parallel to the difference between the old alchemist and the modern
man of science; the former haunted by demons, goblins and spirits,
warped by symbolic obsessions and cabalistic words and numbers,
terribly alone with himself, obsessed with religious fears, by fear
of the inquisitor, by fear of the ruler above and of the rabble
below, perpetually baffled in his attempts to achieve great things,
but full of a dangerous unpremeditated knowledge of poisons and
mischievous devices; the latter with a mind released by centuries
of analysis and simplification, reassured by the incessant tale
of scientific victories, stoically indifferent to popular
misrepresentation and equally sure of his universe and himself.

5.  The First Conference at Basra: 1965

The conference of scientific and technical workers at Basra in 1965
is regarded by historians as a cardinal date in the emergence of
the Modern State.  It was organized by the Transport Union, which
had begun as a loose association of the surviving aeroplane and
shipping operators for mutual aid and protection.  The ideas
formulated at this conference--and even those were still formulated
with a certain tentative or tactful incompleteness--had been
gathering force and definition for some time.  But this conference
was the first to draw up a definite plan of the general human
outlook and initiate an organization to carry it out.  It marked
the transition from thought to action in general affairs.

The idea of using air transport as the combining and directive
force for a new synthesis of civilization was already an old and
familiar one.  It had been in men's thoughts for at least thirty
years.  A popular story published in 1933, Man's Mortality (by the
English romancer Michael Arlen, 1895-1990), for instance, is an
amusing fantasy of the world dominated by an air-transport
syndicate.  It is still a very readable book and interesting in
showing the limitations of the educated imagination at that time.
The belief in the possibilities of invention is unbounded; air
velocities and air fighting are described on a scale that still
seems preposterously exaggerated to-day; while on the other hand
the inflated stock buying and selling of that period, although it
had grown from the merest germ in about a century and a half, is
represented as still going on unchanged, and the world's air
dictators are gambling dishonestly in stock, and at last "crash"
financially and bolt as though they were just contemporary
politicians and mystery men rather than lords of the whole power of
the air.  In a world of incredible metals, explosives and
swiftness, the Stock Exchange, the Bourses, still survive.  And
there are still Powers and Foreign Policies!  Nothing could
illustrate better the inability of people at that time to realize
the economic and political changes that were then actually tumbling
upon them.  For some obscure reason mental and moral progress and
institutional invention seemed absolutely impossible to them.

An interesting little London periodical of the same time, Essential
News, has recently been reprinted for graduate students of history
in the Students' Reprint Series.  Its fourth issue (February 4th,
1933) contains a summary of contemporary thought about World Air
Control.  It cites a complete scheme for the "International"
control of aviators, drawn up by a small French group at the
suggestion of M. Henri de Jouvenal under the presidency of M.
Pierre Denis.  A Union Aéronautique Internationale is proposed, a
cosmopolitan air transport company.  Linked with this and
controlled by the poor League of Nations, an "Air Force for Mutual
Assistance" was to police the atmosphere.  The proposals are so
plainly Utopian and impracticable in the face of the sovereign
state system as to seem insincere.  It was only thirty years later,
after the common suicide of the sovereign Powers of Europe, that
the assembled technicians at Basra could revive the broad
conception of this proposal.

This first conference at Basra was distinguished from its
predecessors first by its universality and then by the extremely
bold and comprehensive proposals for united action it accepted--
proposals which were in effect, if not in form, the project for the
modern World-State.  It was the first of these gatherings attended
by considerable American, Chinese and Japanese contingents, as well
as the customary European representatives, and the Russian
technicians were present in unprecedented strength and unexpectedly
united and independent of the political controllers who accompanied
them.  New Zealand also had reappeared in the world's affairs.
There were even two representatives (two schoolmasters in the
Social Psychology section) from Iceland, which for most practical
purposes had been cut off from the world for over five years.  And
one has only to compare the agenda of this and previous assemblies
to feel at once the stride forward in the scope and courage of
scientific and technical thought that had occurred.

It was a young gathering; the average age is estimated by Amen
Rihani as about thirty-three, and five or six women attended in the
social and educational branches.  A third but very significant
feature was the extensive use of that simple and convenient lingua
franca of the aviators, Basic English.  Even the native English-
speaking people present did their best to keep their speeches
within the limitations of that ingenious idiom.

The master section was still that of General Transport.  The body
which had organized the gathering was, as has been said already,
the Transport Union, originally a purely business body, but the
inspiration was that of the Modern State movement, and technicians
in medicine, education, agriculture and every main type of
industrial production were present.  There was much discussion of
the upkeep of the world routes and the administrative tasks arising
out of that.  Nothing could give the student a more vivid sense of
the derelict state of the world at that time than the boldness with
which this Control took possession of things and pushed its
activities into new fields.  It was decided, for instance, that all
existing aerodromes and landmarks, lights and lighting fields,
should be directly under its management.  There was no question of
purchase; it took them over.  Every aeroplane in the world was to
be registered, was to carry a distinctive number, respect the
common tariff of charges and pay a registration fee to the Control.
Airships and aeroplanes which did not do this were to be treated as
pirates, denied the use of aerodromes and filling stations, and
"driven out of the air".  They were to be driven out of the air if
necessary by an "air police" which the Control was to organize.
Aerodromes or regions that harboured such recalcitrants were to be

These proposals were not accepted without discussion.  But there
was very little protest against what was certainly, from the older
point of view, an illegal usurpation of authority.  The political
members of the Russian contingent offered the chief resistance, and
what other opposition appeared was not from aviators, engineers,
chemists, biologists or men of that type, but from sociologists and
economists of the less advanced schools.  The main objection took
the form of a question:  "But what will governments say to this?"
So far as the Westerners and Chinese were concerned there was a
disposition to disregard the possibility of political intervention.
"Wait till it comes," they said cheerfully.  But Soviet Russia and
Soviet Japan were at that time much more rankly political than the
rest of the world, and they at least had politicians as well as men
of skill and science present at this gathering.  A long speech was
made by the commissar Vladimir Peshkoff, full of the menace of
later trouble.  He denounced the projected Control as an insidious
attempt to restore a capitalist trust in the world.  Its psychology
would be bourgeois and capitalist.  Moscow would never consent to
the passage of controlled machines over the vast territories under
Soviet control nor allow the exploitation of the resources of
Russia in oil and minerals by any outside organization.

"And how will Moscow prevent it?" asked Ivan Englehart, a Russian
aviator and aeroplane builder, rising as Peshkoff sat down.  "Is it
a nationalism of this sort that the Third International is to end?"

By way of reply Peshkoff leant towards him and spat out in Russian,
"Wait until you return to Moscow."

"I may have to wait a little time," said Englehart.  "I am a
citizen of the world, and I shall go back to Russia in my own time
and in my own fashion."

"This is treason.  Wait until Moscow hears of this!"

"And how and when will Moscow hear of this?"

"Very soon."

Englehart was standing a few yards from Peshkoff.  He shook his
head with a sceptical smile.  He spoke gently, like a man who had
long prepared himself for such an occasion.

"You flew here, Tavarish Peshkoff, in my squadron.  How do you
propose to return?"

Peshkoff rose to his feet, realized the blank want of sympathy in
the gathering, spluttered and sat down again in unconcealed dismay.

Englehart waited for a moment or so and then went on, choosing his
words with quiet deliberation, to assure the meeting of the
adhesion of the Russian technicians to the projected Control.
"That phantom Proletarian of yours fades with all the other empires
and kingdoms," he said to the political delegates his colleagues.
"We are only giving shape to a new world order that is already

His speech set the key for most of the subsequent debate.

That establishment of the Control was the backbone discussion, but
it was no more than the backbone of a plan that covered the whole
future organization of society; upon it was articulated a whole
framework of structural proposals.  The central section dealt not
only with the air network but with the organization of every type
of communication.  The lighthouses, lightships, sea marks, channels
and harbours of the world were suffering from a decade of economy,
a decade of wartime destruction and a decade of chaos and decay.
The meteorological services were no longer operative.  All this had
to be restored.  The definite abandonment of every type of railroad
was accepted as a matter of course.  Railways were buried at Basra
forever.  And the restoration and reconstruction of production in a
hundred essential industries followed also as a necessary
consequence of these primary resolutions.

The more the reader scrutinizes the agenda, the more is he
impressed by the mildness of the official title of the gathering:
"A Conference on Scientific and Mercantile Communications and
Associated Questions".  It is clear that the conveners resolved
to press on with their task of world reorganization as far as
they possibly could, without rousing the enfeebled and moribund
political organizations of the past to obstruction and interference.
The language throughout is that of understatement; the shape of the
projects is fearlessly bold.  A committee of experts had prepared a
very good general survey of the natural resources of the planet,
including those of the already suspicious Russia, and the conference
set itself unhesitatingly to work out the problems of a resumption
of production generally, with an entire disregard of the various
proprietary claims that might arise to challenge the realization of
these schemes.  There was no provocative discussion of these claims;
they were ignored.  The Sea and Air Ways Control evidently meant
to take effective possession not only of all derelict ports,
aerodromes, coal-mines, oil wells, power stations and mines, but to
bring those in which a certain vitality still lingered into line
with its schemes by hook or by crook, by persuasion or pressure.
Its confidence in its solidarity with the skilled men working these
latter establishments was absolute.  Such a solidarity would have
been inconceivable thirty years before.  Financial adventure had
been washed out of the minds of the new generation of technicians
altogether.  They simply wanted to "get things going again".  Ideas
of personal enrichment were swamped in their universal conviction
that their class must now either work together and master the world,
or leave it.

So with a modest air of logical necessity, of being driven rather
than driving, the Conference spread its planning far beyond the
material and mechanism of world intercommunication.

What is this reconstructed transport to carry?  How is it to be
fed--and paid for?  About the air-ports everywhere were tracts and
regions sinking back to that primordial peasant cultivation which
had been the basis of all the barbaric civilizations of the past.
The question of the expropriation of the peasant and the
modernization of agricultural production was taken up at Basra at
the point where Lenin and Stalin had laid it down, defeated.  The
Conference was lucidly aware that upon the same planet at the same
time you cannot have both an aviator and a starveling breeding
peasantry, toiling endlessly and forever in debt.  One or other has
to go, and the fundamental objective of the Conference was to make
the world safe for the former.  The disappearance of the latter
followed, not as a sought-after end but as a necessary consequence.
And the disappearance of as much of the institutions of the past as
were interwoven with it.

In the ideas of their relations to each other and to the world as a
whole, these Basra technicians were all what the nineteenth century
would have called socialistic.  They were so fundamentally
socialistic that they did not even raise the question of socialism.
It is doubtful if the word was ever used before.  They took it for
granted that this Control that was growing like a limitless polyp
in their minds would be the effectual owner and exploiter of all
the aeroplanes, routes, industrial townships, factories, mines,
cultivations that were falling into place in their Plan.  It would
have seemed as unnatural to them that a new Ford or a new
Rockefeller should arise to own a factory or a mine personally, as
that anyone should try to steal the ocean or the air.  There it was
for the common good, and just as much was industrial plant for the
common good.

All these men it must be remembered, almost without exception, were
men of the salaried type of mind.  They had been born and brought
up in a tradition in which money was a secondary matter.  From the
beginning of the mechanical age, the men of science, the technical
experts, the inventors and discoverers, the foremen and managers
and organizers, had been essentially of the salariat.  Some few had
dabbled in finance and grown rich, but they were exceptions.
Before the World War indeed these sort of men had been accustomed
to accept the acquisitive and gambling types, the powerful rich and
owning people, as a necessary evil.  Now they were manifestly a
totally unnecessary evil, and without the least vindictiveness or
animosity plans were made to do without them and prevent their
return.  The Basra Conference would as soon have considered a
return of Foreign Offices or of Kings or Divinities.

But they had to consider--and this was the work of a powerful
section upon which the Americans were exceptionally active--how the
wealth of the world that they meant to restore had to be distributed
for consumption, and how a close-knit world organization was to be
reconciled with personal freedom and particularly with artistic and
literary initiatives.  This was entitled the Section of Wages,
Charges and Supply.

There seems to have been the completest agreement that the only way
of combining service with private liberty is by the use of money.
Without money there is necessarily a dictation of consumption and a
dictation of movement to the worker.  He would be given "what was
good for him".  But money generalized the claim of the worker as
worker, and the claim of the citizen as shareholder in the
commonweal, upon the goods, pleasures, facilities and liberties of
life.  You take your money and you buy this or that, or go here or
there, or do whatever you please.  But there were dangers in this
invention; twice in history money had failed mankind and a money-
linked order had crashed.  This time, they thought, mankind had
learnt its lesson, and a new money had to be devised that would be,
in any large sense, fool-proof, sneak-proof and scoundrel-proof.
So much lay beneath the intention of the Section of Wages, Charges
and Supply.

This section carried the question of money into regions that would
have seemed quite outside its scope thirty years before.  In the
Twenties and Thirties of the century, and indeed into the war
troubles of the Forties, there had been a great volume of
discussion about money.  Men had realized its dangers and set
themselves, with the energy born of a sense of crisis, to the
analysis of its progresses and the invention of new methods that
should prevent the gross accumulation of ownership, the mischievous
manipulation of credit, the relative impoverishment of the worker
and the strangulation of enterprise that had wrecked the second
monetary civilization.  Gradually it had been realized that there
could be no Theory of Money that was not in fact a complete theory
of social organization.  The Conference set itself now to a
prepared and simplified task.

The interdependence of monetary theory with the general theory of
property and social structure, which had hardly been suspected by
their fathers, was now universally recognized.  There was a
considerable contingent of young lawyers present, though it would
have amazed the previous generation beyond measure to find them in
the ranks of technologists and men of science.  They knocked the
dust of centuries off the idea of ownership in these very pregnant
debates.  We have already mentioned the surprise of Nicholson at
the new sort of law schools he found in America.  At Basra the
products of these schools were very much to the fore, together with
several older teachers from the London School of Economics, which
flourished until the landslide of 1968.  These new lawyers, with
their fundamentally scientific habits of mind, were amazingly
unlike their professional predecessors--those obstinate, cunning
and terrible old sinners who played so large a part in the economic
strangulation of the United States and the frustration of all the
high hopes of their founders.  They had completely abandoned the
pretence that the business of the law was to protect private
property, exact debts and maintain a false appearance of equity
between man and man.  They knew that justice without equality of
status and opportunity can be nothing more than a sham, and their
ideas were already completely based on our current conception of
law as the regulative system in the network of relationships
between the human commonweal and its subordinate corporations and
individuals.  They were entirely contemptuous of any claims,
contracts, rules and precedents that impeded the free expansion of
human welfare.  Among all the various types that gathered at Basra,
these younger lawyers, in close touch with the new economists on
the one hand and the group psychologists on the other, and inspired
by a political constructiveness of the boldest sort, were certainly
the most remarkable.

It is chiefly to them that we owe the firm assertion by the Basra
Conference of the principle that in a modern community there can be
no individual property in anything but personal belongings and
money.  This was thrown out as something too obvious to discuss.
Houses and lands were henceforth to be held on leases of a not too
lengthy period, life tenure being the longest.  All other tangible
things, they assumed, belonged inalienably to the world commonweal--
in the usufruct of which every human being was manifestly a
shareholder.  And it was these younger lawyers also who did the
greater part of that task of disentanglement and simplification,
which reduced money to its present and only proper use as a check
for consumable goods and services, either paid out to the
individual, or, in the case of minors and incapables, to the
individual's guardians, either as a part of the racial inheritance
or else as wages for work in the common service.  The world was to
be reborn without usury or monetary speculation.

The monetary methods of the world at that time were in a state of
such complete chaos that there was no effective system in working
order anywhere to present an immediate resistance to the operation
of the new ideas.  Every region was running its own, often very
arbitrary and primitive, system of tokens and checks.  But the
revival of communications that had made Basra possible was already
giving an increasing prestige to what was known as the "air-
dollar".  This was not a metallic coin at all; it was a series of
paper notes, which represented distance, weight, bulk, and speed.
Each note was good for so many kilograms in so much space, for so
many kilometres at such a pace.  The value of an air-dollar had
settled down roughly to a cubic metre weighing ten kilograms and
travelling two hundred kilometres at a hundred kilometres an hour.

This was already an energy unit and not a unit of substance, such
as the old world standards had always been.  It marked very
definitely that the old static conceptions of human life with
limited resources were giving place to kinetic ideas of a
continually expanding life.  The air-dollar was a unit of energy in
terms of transport, and its transformation into the energy dollar
of our daily life to-day was already sketched out clearly by the
Basra experts, although the actual change over was not accomplished
until ten years later.

It was the plain, if unformulated, intention of the new Air and Sea
Control to gain possession and exploit all the available sources of
energy in the world as soon as possible, to frame its human balance
sheet, scale its wages and declare its dividends as the common
trustee of mankind, but manifestly if the threat of Peshkoff
materialized, and the Russian Soviet system (or indeed any other
owning group) was able to remain in effective control of its
territorial wealth, the energy dollar would afford a just
unambiguous medium for whatever trade was necessary between the
competing administrations.

The planning of a new political, industrial, and monetary world
scheme still does not measure the full achievement of this First
Basra Conference.  There was also a strong and vigorous educational
section working in close touch with the technicians and the social
psychologists.  It made plans not only for the coordination of the
surviving colleges and technical schools in the world and for the
revivification of those that had lapsed, but it set itself
definitely to the task of that propaganda of the idea of the Modern
State which is the substantial content of our existing fundamental
education.  This was dealt with by the Section of Training and
Advertisement.  Basic English was to lay the foundations of a world
lingua franca.  Evidently wherever the influence of the Air and Sea
Control extended, a new propaganda, a new Press, and new common
schools were to extend.  There can be little doubt that most of the
teachers at Basra already saw quite clearly ahead of them the
world-wide mental and social order in which we live to-day.  They
knew what they were doing.  They went back from this gathering
encouraged and confirmed, to give themselves to the terrific and
exalting adventure before them, to the evocation day by day, and
idea by idea, of a new civilization amidst the distressful,
slovenly, and still living wreckage of the old.

When the Conference at last dispersed two new realities had
appeared in the world, so unobtrusively that it was only slowly
that the mass of mankind realized their significance.  One was the
Central Board, known also as the Sea and Air Control, consolidating
the Transport Union, linking with it the other Controls and
sections, and having its permanent offices at Basra; the other was
the Police of the Air and Sea Ways, at first a modest organization
with about 3,000 aeroplanes, a handful of seaplanes, a hundred
patrol ships, and a personnel of about 25,000 men.  It was a small
body judged by the standards either of preceding or subsequent
times, but at that period it was by far the most powerful armed
force in the world.

6.  The Growth of Resistance to the Sea and Air Ways Control

For nearly ten years the Air and Sea Control was able to grow and
extend its methods and influence without any general conflict.  The
little breeze between the Russian political control and the
technicians did not rise to a storm; instead it died away.  Russia
was learning wisdom at last and weakening in her resolve to
subordinate the modern scientific type of man to his old-
fashioned demagogic rival.  She had suffered so severely by the
miscalculations and convulsive direction of her party chiefs; she
was still so ill equipped mechanically, and so poorly provided with
aviators, that the old and now mentally weary dictatorship recoiled
from a new struggle with these and their associated technical
experts.  It is to be noted that, in spite of the closest
espionage, the creed of the Russian aviators, engineers, and men of
science was already the Modern State and not the Dictatorship of
the Proletariat, and that her political rulers were beginning to
understand this.

So that the Air and Sea Control, sustained by a multitude of nuclei
on De Windt's pattern scattered throughout the world, very much as
the Bolshevik political organization had been sustained by the
Communist Party, came into existence and spread its ever-growing
network about the planet without an immediate struggle.  Its
revolutionary nature was understood by few people other than its
promoters.  It grew rapidly.  As the Esthonian proverb says:  "One
must be born before one's troubles begin."

The recovery of human prosperity in that decade between 1965 and
1975 was very rapid.  It went on side by side with the expansion of
the Transport system.  By 1970 the Transport Control, the chief of
the subsidiaries of the general Air and Sea Control, was running
world-wide services that had as many as 25,000 aeroplanes aloft at
the same time; it had possessed itself of shipyards on the Tyne, in
Belfast, Hamburg, and a number of other points, and was building
steel cargo ships by the score; it was creating a new system of
high roads for which a number of the old main railway tracks were
taken over, and it was running water-power stations, substituting
our present chemical treatment of carboniferous strata for the
terrible hand coal-mining of the older economy, and it was working
oil.  It had developed a subsidiary body, the Supply Control, which
was rapidly becoming a vaster organization than its parent.  This
was engaged in producing iron and steel, producing or purchasing
rubber, metals, cotton, wool and vegetable substances, and
restoring the mass production of clothing of all sorts, electrical
material, mechanisms, and a vast variety of chemicals of which the
output had been dormant in some instances for twenty years or more.

Never very clearly cut off from the Supply Control was the Food
Control, which began ostensibly with the victualling of the
Transport Services, and was soon carrying on a vast barter in food
materials, its own surplus supplies and commodities generally
throughout the world.  In all its ramifications these three bodies
were in 1970 employing about two million people, to whom wages were
paid in the new modern dollars, energy dollars, good for units in
Transport, housing, and for all the priced commodities handled by
the Controls.

The property of all these Controls was vested in the Modern State
Society, which consisted at this time of about a quarter of a
million Fellows, who had to be qualified up to a certain level of
technical efficiency, who submitted to the Society disciplines
during their years of active participation, and received wages
varying by about 200 per cent above or below a mean standard,
according to their standing.  About a quarter of the other
employees were student apprentices aspiring to fellowship, and of
these the proportion was increasing.  The Society had already
developed the organization it was to retain for a century.  The
Fellows were divided into faculties for technical purposes; they
voted by localized groups upon local issues and they had a general
vote for the faculty delegations to the central council of the
Society, which had its first seat at Basra contiguous to the
central offices of the Three Controls.  The relation of the Society
to the Controls was not unlike the relation of the Communist Party
to the Moscow Government in the early days of the Soviet system; it
was a collateral activity of much the same people.

It was the Society itself which at first directed the educational
activities of the Modern State Movement.  Wherever it had either
its own "nuclei" or found employees of the Controls, it provided an
elementary education of the new pattern, which involved a very
clear understanding of the history and aims of the Modern State
idea, and wherever it had works and factories and a sufficient
supply of students, it founded and equipped science schools and
technical schools, which included psychology, medicine, group
psychology and administration.  Gradually a special section of
Training and Education was developed under the Air and Sea Control,
and this grew into a separate Educational Control.  But it never
became as distinct from, and collateral to, the Modern State
Fellowship as the rest of the Control organizations.  One may
figure the whole of this world system as a vast business octopus,
with the Air and Sea Control as its head and the other Controls as
its tentacles.  The account-keeping of this octopus centred at
Basra, but a rapid development of subsidiary record and statistical
bureaus also occurred.  Side by side grew the intelligence and
research services.  By 1970, the world meteorological service was
far in advance of anything that had ever existed before.

But already this restoration of communications and circulation was
producing effects far beyond the Fellowship and the power of
employment of the associated Controls.  The ebb in the vitality of
human life had already passed its maximum and now began a
restoration of activity everywhere, a fresh movement in the
decaying towns, a new liveliness upon the countryside, a general
reawakening of initiative, that were to confront the direction of
this fast growing nexus of the Modern State, with challenges,
difficulties, and menaces, that grew rapidly to tremendous

It had been comparatively easy to spread throughout a prostrate and
bankrupt world the new system of air and sea communications and
trading that had been evolved.  That world was too exhausted by
war, famine, and pestilence and too impoverished to support
extensive and aggressive political organizations.  It was
altogether another problem, even with the spreading "nuclei", the
new schools and propaganda, to control and assimilate the
populations that now, no longer living in want and insecurity, were
beginning to feel a fresh strength and a renewed vigour of desire.

Let us review the world situation about 1975.  The Transport
Control had usurped a monopoly of air and sea transport and was
also monopolizing the use of its own new great roads.  This gave it
a practical ownership of the trade in staple products throughout
the world.  It was turning all the surplus products of its
activities back, when its salaries had been paid, into strengthening
its grip upon the general economy of mankind.  By 1975 the Modern
State Society counted just over a million Fellows, and in addition
it was employing and training two million candidates, it was simply
employing another three million and it had between seven and eight
million youngsters in its new schools.  They were all, we may note,
not only given a sound training in physical science and biology, but
were learning world history and so acquiring a world outlook in the
place of the more limited views that had hitherto framed the
ordinary political imagination, and they were being taught Basic
English as a lingua franca.  In ten wonderful years the Transport
Control had grown far beyond the scale of any of the great Trusts or
Controls of the opening years of the century.  It had created a
world currency.  But it was still far from "owning the earth".  Its
own produce did not exceed an eighth of all the outside stuff that
it bought and sold.  Its own production was mainly fuel, metals and
mechanisms.  Food it bought, timber, vegetable oils, crude rubber,
for example.  Several hundred millions of human beings were still
self-subsisting, quite out of its scheme, or dealing with it only
for a few manufactured articles and mass produced commodities.  And
other hundreds of millions were rapidly developing, or rather
recovering, a collateral productivity in relation to or in rivalry
with its activities.

The chief difficulties before the Modern State movement arose out
of this parallel to its own rapid success.  It was calling into
existence a mass of exterior prosperity far beyond its immediate
power of assimilation.  Propagandists and teachers, advisory
traders and competent directive agents are not made in a day.
The strain upon the supply of ability, loyalty, and complete
understanding in the movement was already being noted in 1970.
In 1972 we hear of a "scrutiny of qualifications", and new rules
were made for the lapsing and expulsion of incompetent and
unsatisfactory Fellows.  The controlling staff had to be enlarged
continually, and the supply of men with the necessary character,
knowledge of group psychology and understanding of the constructive
theory of the movement was limited.

"Let us serve", said Fedor Galland, who was already becoming a
leading spirit upon the World Council, in a speech that was
circulated in 1973; "let us not fall into factions; let us not
group ourselves.  We cannot afford bickering; we must not thwart
and waste each other.  We have done no more as yet than make a
start.  Remember the strangulation of Russia by Stalin.  Remember
those excellent chapters of De Windt against the spirit of
opposition.  The struggle for the Modern State has only begun."

Here we have the clearest indication that growth strains were
already apparent within the structure of the still infantile Modern

But if the movement found difficulty in sustaining its internal
unanimity, there was at least this in its favour, that, outside it,
there was no single world-wide framework in which antagonisms could
concentrate.  The old international banking system was dead and
gone, and the new order issued its new money and was free to create
and dominate the financial organization of things.  The old
armament-dealing interests were dead and buried.  The old
nationalist Press systems were dead and already forgotten.  It is
extraordinary with what rapidity this latter aspect of social life
was forgotten, seeing that up to 1940 at any rate it was the
primary medium of collective thought and opinion.  To-day a copy of
a newspaper of any date between 1890 and 1970 is a rare and
precious thing, which has to be protected from carbonization in an
air-proof wrapper.  The Central Board controlled most of the new
paper supplies as well as the now rapidly reviving telegraphic,
telephonic and air transmission systems.

The resistances and antagonisms it had to encounter, within its
organization and without, were certainly immense, but they were
extremely various; the dangers they developed never came together
into one united danger, never rose to a simultaneous maximum and
produced a supreme crisis.  In this respect or that the advance of
the Modern State might be fought to a standstill and held, but it
was never put entirely upon the defensive, and since it held trade,
money and its ever-spreading efficient common schools in its hands,
time was always on its side.  "If not to-day, to-morrow," said
Arden Essenden.  "But better to-day," said Fedor Galland.

The rapidity with which the Transport Control of 1965 expanded into
the Modern State octopus of 1975 accounts for quite another group
of difficulties, as well as this initial difficulty of creating a
personnel to keep pace with the perpetually elaborated task.  This
second group of troubles came from the fact that in habit and
spirit the old order of things, the old ideas, the old methods, had
not had time to die.  That old world, blinded and enfeebled by its
own errors, had staggered and fallen down in the Thirties and
Forties, had lain in a coma in the Fifties.  Throughout the Sixties
the new world had come into existence.  But in the brains of all
the men and women alive who were more than forty years old, and in
a great majority of those younger, more or less of the old world
survived.  The revival of human vitality in the Seventies involved
not merely a renascence but a restoration.  Old things came back to
find their habitations still very imperfectly occupied by the new.

Let us consider what form this opposition had taken and what were
the more serious survivals of the old order--old "state of affairs"
rather than "order"--still in active existence about 1975.  We
shall then have a clue to the history of the next seventy-five

The task before the Air and Sea Control was essentially to leaven
the whole world to its own pattern.  Within its far-flung tentacles
it embraced and sought to permeate with its own nature, with the
concepts and methods of a commonweal of mutual service, a mass of
some thousands and a half million human beings, still carried on by
inertias established during thousands of generations.  Morowitz
calculates that in 1976 about sixty per cent of this mass was
living directly upon the seasonal cultivation of the soil, and that
two-thirds of this, throughout the temperate zone, was producing
mainly for its own consumption and not for trade.  He thinks this
was a relapse from the state of affairs that obtained about 1910-
1920.  An emancipation from the soil, an abolition of the peasant,
had then been in progress for more than a century.  Large-scale
production, with an abundant use of machines, had so increased the
output per head as to liberate (if it can be called liberation) a
growing proportion of hands for industrial work or unemployment.
But this process had been reversed after 1940.  From that date
onward there was a drift back of workers to the land, to live very
incompetently and wretchedly.

The abolition of the self-subsisting peasant had been the conscious
objective of Lenin and Stalin in Russia.  The cultivator, with
increasing ease, was to produce fundamental foodstuffs far beyond
his own needs and to receive for his surplus an ever increasing
variety of helps, comforts and amenities.  Millions of the
cultivators in 1910 were cultivating entirely for the market; they
produced cotton, hemp, rubber or what not, and were as dependent on
the provision shop for their food as any townsman.  The social
crash had ended all that.  In the Famished Fifties, as Morowitz
says, everyone was "scratching for food in his own patch".  In the
Sixties the common way of life throughout the world was again
immediate production and consumption.  Only under the direction and
stimulus of the Transport Control did the workers upon the soil
begin to recover the confidence and courage needed to produce
beasts only for sale and crops only for marketing.

The ambition of the Modern State Fellowship was to become the
landlord of the planet and either to mine, afforest, pasture, and
cultivate directly or to have these tasks performed by responsible
tenants, or groups and associations of tenants under its general
control.  But at the outset it had neither the personnel nor the
power to carry out so fundamental a reconstruction of human
affairs.  The comparative failure of the two Five Year Plans in
Russia had been a useful warning against extravagant propositions.

The Modern State did not mean, as the old saying goes, "to bite off
more than it could chew".  Its chief missionaries were its traders.
They were more abundant than, and they did not need the same amount
of training as, the Modern State schoolmasters and propagandists.
They went offering contracts and prices to existing or potential
food growers, cotton growers, rubber planters and operable mines;
the Control did its best to guarantee sales and prices to any
surviving factories, and it trusted to the selective power it had
through transport, the new monetary issues, research and technical
education to strengthen its grip as time went on and enable it to
establish a general order in this worldwide mélange of bankrupt
producers and impoverished customers it was restoring to activity.

At first it made no enquiry as to the ownership of goods that were
brought to its depots; it paid cash and observed its contracts; it
attempted no discriminations between man and man so long as they
delivered the goods and traded square.  Its nuclei and schools were
still propagandist schools in 1975 and quasi independent of the
trading, transport and industrial organizations that endowed them.
But this was only the first stage in the Modern State undertaking.
The next was to be more difficult.

The student of history must always keep in mind the importance of
lifetime periods in social and political change.  Between 1935 and
1975 was only forty years.  Everywhere old systems of ideas were
still dominating men's brains and still being transmitted to the
young.  Old habits of thought, old values, old patterns of conduct,
that had been put aside, as it were, just as jewels and fine
clothes and many polite usages had been put aside, during the days
of dire need and immediate fear, returned with returning self-
respect.  During the Famished Fifties the full creative scheme of
the Modern State won its way to dominate the imaginations of at
most a few score thousand minds, whose scientific and technical
education had prepared them for it.  After that the propaganda had
been vigorous, but still, even after the Conference of Basra in
1965, the number of brains that could be reckoned as primarily
Modern State makers probably numbered less than a couple of hundred

The subsequent propaganda was still more swift and urgent, but the
new membership was not always of the same thorough quality as the
old.  The society wanted the services of every man or woman it
could incorporate with its Fellowship, but it did not want an
inrush of half prepared adherents, refugees from moral perplexity
requiring guidance, ambitious careerists.  Every new religion,
every church, every organized movement has known this conflict
between the desire for expansion and the dread of dilution.  On the
one hand the Modern State recalled the headlong shallow mass
conversions of Christianity and Islam, which had reduced those
great faiths to a mere superstitious veneer upon barbarism, and on
the other there was the more recent warning of Soviet Russia,
morally and intellectually sterilized at last by the eternal
espionage, censorship and "purges" of the G.P.U.  The central brain
of the Modern State octopus had to steer its world system of
organization between the extremes of rash receptiveness and black
suspicion.  It had to go steadfastly and discreetly and yet it had
to go swiftly.  If, on the one hand, it found presently that its
own Fellowship was not altogether as free as it had been at first
from reactionary weaknesses and traditional sentiments, on the
other it found that its leading ideas, by virtue of its material
successfulness and of continual explicit statement, were spreading
far beyond the limits of its nuclei and its organized teaching.

In the economic realm there appeared, even from the first,
intimations of a revival of prosperity, a number of developments
that the Society, had it had the necessary resources, would gladly
have nipped in the bud.  It wanted to deal directly with every
primary producer.  To-day that is how things are.  But so soon as
there was a new demand for cotton, for rubber, for pork, wheat,
rice and the like, a multitude of obliging intermediaries appeared
between the negro cotton growers in America, the Sudanese cotton
growers, the local folk who went into the largely abandoned rubber
plantations to collect rubber again, the wheat farmers and
swineherds and ranchmen, and set themselves to collect and handle
the produce for the Control buyers and to distribute Control goods
by retail in return.

These people, the former business men of the world, emerged from
the slums of decaying towns, from municipal offices, from their own
reluctantly cultivated corners of land, from the dingy retreats of
predatory bands, from small local trading establishments, full of
the sense of trade revival.  They organized loans to the peasants,
contrived advances of material to them, advised them shrewdly, went
officiously to the Control agents for instructions.

This sort of intervention did not stop at individuals, nor with
advices and promises.  In many parts of the world, in townships and
counties and small states, where a Town Council or Workers' Soviet
or Mayor or Lord of the Manor was in authority, or where mines or
plantations lay abandoned and neglected, the reviving breeze of
buying produced a violent desire in the minds of men to set other
people working for their profit.  There were "Getting to Work
Again" fêtes in America in 1969 to "stimulate local business".

By 1975, from Manchuria to Cape Colony and from Vancouver to Java,
the old state of affairs--peasants in debt, peasants working to pay
rent, peasants bringing in goods in arrears, fishermen, miners,
factory and gang workers generally, collectors and hunters, the old
immemorial economic life of mankind--was recovering vigour.  Debt
serfdom was returning everywhere.  Rents were rising everywhere.
Everywhere the increasing surplus product was being intercepted
according to time-honoured patterns.  Even slavery was reappearing
in thinly disguised forms.

It had always been a strong tendency in the old order to utilize
the labour of offenders against the law.  Forced labour seemed so
just and reasonable a punishment that whenever the possibility of
using it profitably appeared the authorities set themselves to
multiply indictable offences and bring luckless people into unpaid
servitude.  In the "classic" age most mines were worked and most
galleys propelled by convicts.  In the late Middle Ages the
Mediterranean shipping waited on the magistrate, and if offenders
did not appear in sufficient numbers they had to be sought for.
Out of the dimness of the Fifties and Sixties into the returning
publicity and activity of this phase of recovery there appeared
everywhere local bosses, chiefs and political gangs inciting and
driving people to the production of marketable goods.  The Supply
Control Report of 1976 on "Conditions of Labour Supplying Goods to
Us" notes the existence of convict labour in North and South
America, on the West Coast of Africa, in Soviet Russia, Central
India, North China, Japan, Java and elsewhere, and states that in
many districts it is hardly distinguishable from kidnapping.

"The cheapness of human beings", runs the Report, "is once more
impeding the efficient organization of mechanical production.
Outside the range of our own services and factories, there are vast
and increasing masses of people now living at a standard of life
too low and under stresses too urgent for them even to begin to
understand the objectives of the Modern State, and, drawing its
sustenance from their degradation, there is arising again an
intricate tangle of exploiting classes, entrepreneurs, wholesalers,
retailers, money-lenders (lending the local coinages and exchanging
against our notes), politicians, private and corporation lawyers,
investors and landowners, of the most varied types, but all having
one common characteristic, that they put profit before service and
will resist and drive as hard a bargain as they can with our
expanding organization.  These things are returning about as fast
as we are growing."

The Transport Control Report of the same year notes another system
of troubles arising.  Here the attack on Modern State development
was more direct.  "We are finding the question of way-leaves an
increasing difficulty in the extension of our road net for local
and heavy traffic.  The world, we are told more plainly every day,
is not ours to do with as we like.  Everywhere claimants are
springing up, renascent corporations, local authorities or private
individuals who profess ownership of the soil and demand rents or
monetary compensation from us.  In some cases, where the local
authority was of such a character as to afford a reasonable hope of
its ultimate absorption by our organization, we have been able to
come to an arrangement by which it has taken over the making and
maintenance of the route within the area of its alleged
jurisdiction, but in the majority of instances the resistance is
much more frankly in the nature of a hold-up.  The enquiries of our
social psychologists show a widespread desire for simple or
disguised bribery on the part of the obstructives, though it
has to be admitted that there are many genuine cases of quite
disinterested stupidity.  Few of them realize clearly that they are
demanding bribes or exacting blackmail.  They are obsessed by old-
fashioned ideas of property; almost anything in existence they
imagine can be appropriated as a man's 'own', and then he has an
absolute right to do what he likes with his 'own', deny its use to
the commonweal, destroy it, let it at a rack rent, hold it for some
exorbitant price.

"Rarely have these obstructives the whole-hearted support of their
communities behind them--so much has to be conceded to the
propaganda of the Modern State and to the general diffusion of our
ideas and the spontaneous appearance of fresh and kindred idea
systems.  We are preparing a schedule of obstructives.  They vary
in scale from the single tiresome litigious individual with an old-
fashioned clutching mind, through a long range of associations,
cities and provincial councils, to the resuscitated sovereign
governments of the war period.  Two royal families have been
exhumed from their retirement in the German-speaking part of Europe
and more, it is said, are to follow.  On various of our routes,
notably on the Bordeaux-Black Sea road, the old Chinese claim for
'likin' has reappeared.  Our lorries have been held up at
Ventimiglia, where a 'dogana' has been erected by the Fascist
government in Rome, a barrier has been put across the track, and
payments have been demanded in the name of the King of Italy.
There have also been demands for Octroi dues outside some French
and Italian towns.

"A legal committee of the Modern State Faculty of Social Psychology
is taking up the question of these new impediments to world revival
and unification, and it will prepare a plan of action in the course
of the next month.  This attempt to revive the proprietary
strangulation which ended the old order is irritating and may
develop into very grave obstruction.  The former world system of
ownership and administration was in complete liquidation before
1960, and we have no intention of buying it out at anything above
scrap rates.  We deny absolutely any claim to enhanced values
created by our restoration of production and commerce."

7.  Intellectual Antagonism to the Modern State

The earliest known histories are dynastic.  They are little more
than lists of priest-kings and kings and tribes and contributions.
With Herodotus history became political.  It was only in the
eighteenth century (C.E.) that economic processes came into the
story, and only after the time of Karl Marx that their essential
importance was recognized.  Later still, climatic, biological and
geographical changes were woven into the historical tapestry.  Not
until the last hundred years have education, cultural influences
and psychological sequences generally been given their proper rôle
in the human drama.

The most difficult thing in our understanding of the past is to
realize, even in the most elementary form, the mental states of
those men and women, who seem so deceptively like ourselves.  They
had bodies on exactly the same pattern as ours, if not so well
exercised, well nourished and uniformly healthy; they had brains as
capable as ours and as complicated.  It is only when we compare
their conduct with ours that we realize that, judged by their
contents and their habits of reaction, those brains might almost
have belonged to another species of creature.

We read incredulously about the public burning of religious
heretics, of the torture of criminals to enforce confession, of
murders and outrages, of the offence of rape, of the hunting and
tormenting of animals for "sport", of men and women paying money
for the pleasure of throwing sticks at a tethered cock until it
died, and it is hard to resist the persuasion that our ancestors
were insane.  Most of us, were we suddenly put back into the London
of King Henry VIII, would be as frightened, and frightened in the
same way, as if we were put into a ward of unattended criminal
lunatics.  But the brains of these people were no more diseased
than ours.  Their mental habit systems had been built up on a
different framework; and that is the whole difference.

It was perfectly sane men who made the World War, who allowed the
private capitalist system to smash itself to fragments in spite of
reiterated warnings, and who came near to destroying mankind.  If
the reader were sent back only for the hundred and seventy years
between now and 1933, he would still feel a decided uneasiness
about what people might or might not do next.  Yet as he fought
down his alarm and went about among them he would have found them
as completely satisfied of the sanity of their own mental shapes as
he was.

Presently he would have found himself trying to adapt himself to
those mental shapes.  In the end he might come to realize that, in
his own case also, it might be that the things he felt compelled to
believe and do, and the things he found impossible to believe and
do, though they had served his everyday purposes in his own time
fairly well, were no more final in the scheme of things than the
ideology that framed the motives and acts of a Roman emperor or a
Sumerian slave.

The difficulty in the comparison and understanding of past mental
states with our own increases rather than diminishes as we approach
the present, because the differences become more subtle and more
interwoven with familiar phrases and with values we accept.  We
cannot keep in mind that meanings are perpetually being expanded or
whittled away.  We live to-day so saturated in our circumstances,
so full of the security, abundance and vitalizing activity of our
world-commonweal, that it is hard to realize how recently it was
possible for minds of the highest intelligence to call the most
fundamental conceptions of our present order in question.  Even in
the middle Twentieth Century, ideas that now seem so natural and
necessary to us that we cannot imagine them disputed, appeared
extravagant, impossible and offensive to brains that were in their
essential quality just as good as the best alive to-day.

In the early half of the Twentieth Century a great majority of
educated and intelligent men and women had no faith whatever in the
Modern State; they hated it, feared it and opposed it, and it is
doubtful whether the balance was redressed until the Twenty-first
Century was well under way.  The Modern State was built up, by
comparatively mediocre men, upon whom the necessary group of ideas
happened to strike with compelling force.  As H. Levy insisted in
his Universe of Science as early as 1932 (Historical Documents:
General Ideas Series, 192301), science is a "social venture" rather
than an accumulation of individual triumphs.  Both the scientific
idea and the idea of the human community were not individual but
social products.  And the Modern State prevailed because its logic
steadily conquered not this man in particular nor that man in
particular, but the sense of fitness in the general human

Maxwell Brown, in his monumental studies of the growth of the
Modern State idea, has made a fairly exhaustive review of the art
and literature of the early Twentieth Century.  Except in the
writings of a few such sociologists as J. A. Hodson, Harry Elmer
Barnes, James Harvey Robinson, C. A. and Mary Beard, Raymond B.
Fosdick and a few American and English journalists, and in such
alarmist fantasies as Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, there is no
sense whatever of the immense revolutionary changes that were
occurring in the social structure.  Bernard Shaw, for example,
though classed as a revolutionary writer, never, except in his
preposterous Back to Methuselah, anticipated.  The mass of his work
was a witty and destructive commentary upon contemporary things,
ending in that petition in bankruptcy, Too True to be Good.  He had
to a supreme degree the opposition mentality of the Irish.

This estrangement of literature from the Modern State movement
became more marked throughout the nineteen twenties and thirties.
As reality became urgent, as war and insolvency descended upon
social life, literature, art and criticism recoiled into studies
and studios and their own bitter and peculiar Bohemia; they became
elaborately stylistic and "rare", or brilliantly or brutally

This decadence of literature, says Maxwell Brown, was an inevitable
expression of the economic decadence of the Thirties and Forties.
He draws an illuminating contrast between the type of mind
primarily directed towards æstheticism and the type of mind
primarily directed towards science.  The "æsthetic producer", he
insists, is dominated by acceptance; he writes for response.  The
scientific worker aims at knowledge and is quite indifferent
whether people like or dislike the knowledge he produces.  Æsthetic
life therefore is conditioned by the times; science conditions the

Literature and art are necessarily time-servers, either abjectly so
or aggressively and pretentiously so.  They deflect real moods or
speculate upon possible moods in the community.  It is no good
writing books that people will not read or painting pictures from
which they merely turn away.  Psychology in those days had not
developed sufficiently to permit of a scientific analysis of
creative work, and such criticism as there was, when it was not a
simple release of spite, was essentially an effort either to
persuade or to browbeat people into buying books and pictures or
listening to music of a type fancied by the critic.  It was more
bitterly partisan and propagandist than political discussion.

In the expansive phase of the later nineteenth century the general
confidence of the prosperous classes was reflected in a large,
hopeful, forward-looking complacent literature, and every critic
was, so to speak, an uncle, a prosperous uncle, sitting by the
fire, but the sense of contraction and advancing dangers that
troubled the patrons of art and literature as the twentieth century
unfolded threw a defensive quality over the intellectual world,
outside the spheres of science and invention.  The progressive note
was popular no longer.  The reading offered to the people was
pervaded by a nagging hostility to new things, by lamentations for
imaginary lost loyalties and vanished virtues.

It was not so much that the writers of the time desired
civilization to retrace its steps, as that they wished that no more
steps should be taken.  They wanted things to stop--oh, they wanted
them to stop!  The underlying craving was for consolidation and
rest before more was lost.  There was little coherent system in the
objections taken; it was objection at large.  Mass production was
very generally reprehended; science rarely got a good word; war--
with modern weapons--was condemned, though much was to be said for
the "chivalrous" warfare of the past; there were proposals to
"abolish" aeroplanes and close all the laboratories in the world;
it was assumed that hygiene, and especially sexual hygiene, "robbed
life of romance"; the decay of good manners since the polished days
of Hogarth, Sir Charles Grandison and Tony Lumpkin was deplored,
and the practical disappearance of anything that could be called
Style.  As one nineteenth-century American writer lamented, in
suitably archaic English:

     "How life hath cheapened, and how blank
      The Worlde is! like a fen
      Where long ago unstained sank
      The starrie gentlemen:
      Since Marston Moor and Newbury drank
      King Charles his gentlemen."

That was the dominant note.

Maxwell Brown gives a volume of material, quotations (Literature
Hangs Back; Historical Documents: General Ideas Series 311002) from
about four thousand representative books and papers.

As the world emerged again from the sheer desolation of the
Famished Fifties and the great pestilence, this purely opposition
mentality revived in hundreds of thousands of elderly literate
people whose brains had been fitted and turned round in that way
for good.  It revived because it was all there was to revive in
them; and it met with all too ready and natural an acceptance among
those endless myriads of cleverish active people who were now
trying to get private businesses and private profit systems going
before it became too late for ever, between the expanding system--
of the Transport Control and its collaterals above, and the
inarticulate and still needy masses below.  They did not realize
how much the revival of prosperity was due to the new organization.
It was not in their type of mind to want to account for revivals of
prosperity.  What they desired to do was to take advantage of the
"turn of luck".  To them from the first the Transport Control
appeared as a formidable competitor, harsh in spirit and still
harsher in method, which had set itself to prevent smaller brighter
folk making hay while the sun shone.  They were only too eager to
see it as a huge, cheap, nasty, vulgar menace to all the jolly
little profits and rewards and assurances that were peeping up
again in life.  For the loyalty and obedience of servants, it
offered them ingenious mechanical arrangements; for the labour of
respectful toilers, it suggested indifferent and dangerous power
machinery.  Are we not wise and virtuous enough in ourselves, they
asked, that this World Control should come "tidying us up"?

Manifestly the new order was resolved to "incorporate" (hateful
word!), if it could, all these would-be privileged, would-be
irresponsible people.  Its face was hard towards them.  Its
hygienic and educational activities threatened an increasing
regulation of their lives.  It proposed to rob them of the natural
excitements and adventure of gambling and speculation; to deprive
them of the legitimate advantages of their foresight and business
flair.  It threatened them with service; service and ever more
service--a rôle, they insisted, that would be unendurably
"monotonous".  They wanted to be good sometimes and bad sometimes
and jump from this to that.  A "soulless uniformity" became the
bugbear of these recalcitrant minds.

The workers often resented Modern State methods almost as much as
their immediate employers.  Men have always been difficult to
educate and reluctant to submit themselves to discipline, and there
was a curious suggestion of the schoolmaster about these fellows of
the Modern State nuclei.  Dislike of what was at hand helped to
conjure up fears of what might lie beyond.  Once freedom of
business had gone, what rules and regulations might not presently
enmesh the wilful individual under the thumb of this one world
employer?  For instance, the Modern State centres were talking of a
control of population; it was easy to see in that a hideous
invasion of the most private moments in life.  Weights and measures
and money to-day, and wives and parentage tomorrow!

These widely diffused repugnances, fears and antagonisms were
enhanced by the difficulties put in the way of aspirants to the
Modern State Fellowship and to positions of responsibility in the
service of the Controls.  Jobs were not for everyone.  Rejected
candidates to the Fellowship were among the most energetic of
Modern State antagonists.  By 1970, all over the world, wherever
the remains of the old prosperous and educated classes of
"independent" and business people were to be found, appeared
associations to combat the activities of the Modern State nuclei.
There were Liberty Clubs and Free Trade Associations; there were
Leagues of Citizens, Trade Protection Chambers and "Return to
Legality" societies.  There were organized religious and patriotic
revivals.  The Modern State schools were discovered to be immoral,
unpatriotic and anti-religious.  It was extraordinary how the
money-changers hurried to the deserted temples and clamoured for
the return of Christ.

Every town and city found someone or other--as often as not it was
some elderly lawyer or politician from the old days--keen to revive
and protect its privileges.  The world heard once more of the
rights of peoples and nations to be free and sovereign within their
borders.  A hundred different flags fluttered more abundantly every
day about the reviving earth in the sacred name of freedom.  Even
men who were engaged in organizing debt-serf cultivation and debt-
serf industrialism in the American cotton districts, in the old
rubber plantations and in the factories of India, China and South
Italy, appeared as generous supporters of and subscribers to the
sacred cause of individual liberty.

The behaviour of the inferior masses showed a wide divergence of
reactions.  The widespread communist propaganda of the War Years
and the Famished Fifties had intensified their natural hostility to
the profit-seeking bourgeoisie, and there was little chance of
their making common cause with them; but the Modern State Society,
with the lessons of Russia before it, had no disposition to
exacerbate the class war for its own ends.  It knew quite clearly
that to appeal to the mere insurrectionary impulse of the
downtrodden was to invite the specialist demagogue, sustained by
his gang and his heelers, his spies and secret police, to take the
chair in the council chamber.

De Windt had driven that point well home.  "Creative revolution
cannot cooperate with insurrectionary revolution."  There was to be
no flattery of ignorance and inferiority as though they were the
keys to an instinctive wisdom; no incitement to envy and jealousy
against knowledge and ability.  The Modern State meant to abolish
toil, and that meant to abolish any toiling class, proletariat,
labour mass, serf or slave, whatever it was called, but it had no
intention of flattering and using the oafish mental as well as
physical limitations it meant to liberate from existence
altogether.  It took the risk that the forces of reaction would
organize strikes and mass resistance against its regulations, its
economies of employment, its mechanization, its movements of
population and the like, among the other inevitable difficulties of
its task.

So the world-stage was set for the triangular drama of the late
Twentieth and early Twenty-first Centuries, in which reaction in a
thousand forms, and Modern State organization in one, struggled
against each other to subjugate or assimilate the more or less
passive majority of mankind.

We write in outline, and necessarily in an elementary history it is
only the primary lines that can be given.  But just as when we
enlarge our scale of observation, the broad divisions of a map
vanish and countries and divisions become hills, valleys,
buildings, forests, roads, and at last, when we come to earth,
stones, pebbles, blades of grass and flowers, so this rough
division of humanity into three intermingled and intensely
interacting multitudes was in reality qualified by a thousand
million individual complications.

On the whole the content of people's minds was far more intricate
then than it is now.  That is a principle the student of history
must never forget.  The intellectual progress of mankind had been a
continual disentanglement and simplification leading to increased
grasp and power.  These closing decades of the Age of Frustration
were still, in comparison with our own time, a time of uncertainties,
inaccuracies, mixed motives, irrational surprises and bitter late
realizations.  There was scarcely an unskilled toiler in the world
who was really no more than a passive clod in the hands of his
exploiters and employers.  There was scarcely a reactionary who did
not in some fashion want tidiness and efficiency.  And, conversely,
there was hardly a Fellow of the Modern State organization, man or
woman, who had not spasms of acute self-seeking and vanity, who
could not be doctrinaire, intolerant and vindictive on occasion, who
could not be touched by the sentimental and æsthetic values of the
old order, and who did not like, love and react to scores of people
incurably shaped to the opposition pattern.

The New Fiction of the Eighties and Nineties is enormously
preoccupied with this universal battle of ideas and mental habits
in people's minds.  The simpler novels of the earlier past and the
novels of the present day tell of individual character in a set
battle between good and bad in a world of undisputed standards; but
the novels of those years of social conflict tell of a wild
confusion between two sorts of good and two sorts of bad and of
innate character distorted in a thousand ways.  It was a difficult
age.  Life still has its endless ironies and ambiguities, but they
are as nothing to those amidst which the men of 1970 had to steer
their courses.

8.  The Second Conference at Basra, 1978

The second Conference at Basra, though many of its prominent
figures had already played leading rôles in the earlier gathering
in 1965, was very different in scale, scope and spirit from that
assembly.  It was an older gathering.  The average age, says Amen
Rihani, was a full ten years higher.  Young men were still coming
into the Fellowship abundantly, but there had also been accessions--
and not always very helpful accessions--of older men who had been
radical and revolutionary leaders in the war period.  Their frame
of experience had shaped them for irresponsible resistance.  Their
mental disposition was often obstructively critical and
insubordinate.  Many had had no sort of technical experience.  They
were disposed to throw an anarchistic flavour over schools and

Moreover, the great scheme of the Modern State had now lost
something of its first compelling freshness.  The "young men of
'65" had had ten years of responsible administrative work.  They
had been in contact with urgent detail for most of that period.
They had had to modify De Windt's generalizations in many
particulars, and the large splendour of the whole project no longer
had the same dominating power over their minds.  They had lost
something of the professional esprit de corps, the close intimate
confidence with each other, with which they had originally embarked
upon the great adventure of the Modern State.  Many had married
women of the older social tradition and formed new systems of
gratification and friendship.  They had ceased to be enthusiastic
young men and they had become men of the world.  The consequent
loss of a sure touch upon primary issues was particularly evident
in the opening sessions.

Moreover, the atmosphere of the 1965 gathering had been purely a
Modern State atmosphere.  Except for the Russian political
representatives, there had been no antagonism at all to its general
purposes, and there had been few people in Basra who were not
Fellows of the Modern State Society or closely sympathetic with its
aims.  But now the reviving nationalisms, the resuscitating social
and commercial interests of the moribund old world system, were
acutely aware of the immense significance of events at Basra, and
there had gathered an assemblage of delegations, reporters,
adventurers, friends and camp followers of every description, far
exceeding the numbers of the actual Fellows.  They crowded the
Control rest houses that clustered about the aerodrome, they
invaded the offices and residences of the Controls, they stimulated
the private enterprise hotels and restaurants that had recently
sprung up among the date palms and rice fields of the environs, to
an unprecedented congestion and liveliness, and multitudes of them
had to be accommodated in tents and houseboats.  A number of
thirty-year-old hulls of passenger liners were fitted for their
accommodation.  Observers were reminded of the tourist period of
the First Age of General Prosperity when they saw these uninvited
visitors, chaffering with the old-world Bagdad carpet traders and
Arab nomads who had also been attracted by the gathering.

There would probably have been a far greater multitude drawn to
Basra if the Transport Control had not realized in time the social
and hygienic dangers of too great a gathering, and had refused
passages and limited bookings.  Casual individuals were eliminated
as much as possible, and all over the world groups of stranded
pilgrims found themselves unable to get further on the journey.

The most serious of these invaders were the delegations of enquiry
sent by the reawakening sovereign governments of the old order.
These were half diplomatic, half official-expert, teams, and they
came with the declared intention of challenging the activities of
the Controls in their several territories.  They proposed to
legalize and regulate the Controls.  They had no formal standing in
the Conference; they had invited themselves and given the
Conference organizers notice of their coming.  "Better now than
later," said the Modern State officials, and accepted notice and
provided accommodation.  "We have to have things out with them,"
Williams Kapek wrote to Isabel Garden (The Kapek Garden Letters.
Historical Documents Series: Basra II 9376).

Beside these "old government" agencies there were a number of
parties claiming to represent various new business combines and
interests that were setting up in frank competition with the
Control monopolies.  There were a number of lawyers of the older
type, men in sharp contrast and antagonism to the younger legists
of the new American school.  The contrast of the two types, the
older all pomp and dodges and the younger all candour and science,
is dwelt upon lengthily by Kapek.

"This Conference is essentially a conference on Scientific and
Mercantile Communications and Associated Questions, similar to that
held at Basra in 1965"; so ran a printed notice circulated to all
the visitors who could claim any representative status.  "Its
discussions are open only to the Fellows of the faculties of the
Modern State Society.  They are not public discussions and their
reports are for the use of Fellows only.  But it would be
disingenuous to deny that the decisions arrived at may affect the
general welfare of mankind profoundly, and since you come to
present criticisms, claims and proposals presumably in that
interest, the committee of organization of the Conference will do
all it can to facilitate meetings between your group and the
faculty or faculties affected.  Unfortunately the accommodation for
meetings in Basra will be greatly strained by the needs of the
actual Conference, and the committee can do little to arrange
conferences between the immense variety of accredited bodies that
have made an appearance, much less to arrange for their pleasures
and comforts during the period of this assembly.  The committee
regrets that it does not consider the proposal of the committee of
Bagdad citizens, claiming to represent the government of Irak, to
police this unexpected World Fair with 300 Arab policemen, a camel
corps of seventy-nine men and six machine-guns, as a practicable
one.  It has removed this body painlessly to comfortable quarters
in the Island of Ormuz, and the Police of the Air and Sea Ways in
its recognizable uniform will be alone responsible for order in the
ancient province of Bassorah."

Explicit details of information bureaus, hospital organization,
supply and available accommodation followed.

It is difficult to see how else the Central Control could have
dealt with this unexpectedly abundant eruption of the old system,
but the various delegations and commissions professed to be
extremely indignant at their reception.  They were of such various
and unequal value, that they found it impossible to fall into any
combined scheme of action.  Since their theory was that the
Controls and the Modern State organization were nothing more than a
sort of world cooperative society, none of them could behave as
diplomatic missions to a sovereign power.  And consequently they
could not regard each other as diplomatic missions.  Their powers
and authorizations were extremely ill-defined.  The bland refusal
of the Conference authorities to concede them meeting-places and
anything but a very limited use of telephonic, cable and radio
communications embarrassed them extremely.

"I met Sir Horatio Porteous, the British Imperial representative,
in the street," writes Williams Kapek.  "He was very eager to get
my advice upon a point of etiquette.  It seems that we have seized
the province of Bassorah from the government of Irak and made
prisoners of an alleged local police--those fifty lousy camels and
the rest of it I told you about in my last--and that Irak is a
mandatory protectorate under Great Britain.  He wished to put in a
protest somewhere.  'But WHERE?' said he.

"I adopted a sympathetic tone.  'You see,' said Sir Horatio, 'this
Central Control of yours isn't any damned thing at all!  If it was
a provisional government or something . . .'

"I suggested a call on the Air and Sea Police.

"'But they are acting under orders.  Who gives the orders?  It's
all so damned irregular! . . .'"

There was a flutter of calls between the delegations, some "serious
talks" and much drafting of more or less futile minutes, reports
and protests.  The weather was exceptionally hot and dry and such
space and apparatus as was available for exercise and recreation
was monopolized by the more energetic Fellows who were taking part
in the Conference proper.  It was difficult to keep cool, difficult
to keep calm; still more difficult to keep well and hopeful.  Some
few of the intrusive delegates and commissioners took to drinking
hard, but the supply of alcohol was severely limited and the police
had turned practically all the professional ministers of pleasure
out of the province.  On the other hand, the Transport Control, in
a mood of friendly indulgence, started a special service of
pleasure steamers to Bubiyan, outside the jurisdiction of its
police, and there a floating little mushroom town of cafés,
restaurants, houses of pleasure, music halls and shows of every
sort speedily sprung up to minister to the unofficial overflow of
the Conference.

"Bubiyan is draining us quite pleasantly," wrote Williams Kapek,
"and they say there is quite a boom in entertainment for man and
beast in Babylon and Bagdad.  The old British institution of the
long week-end flourishes and Babylon gets more and more

But there were still plenty of outsiders left in Basra to keep the
faculties busy.

Meanwhile the Conference was going on behind closed doors.  It was
clearly recognized that this curious mélange of agents, delegates
and officials from without its organization was only the first
intimation of the confused antagonisms that were gathering against
the new order.  The policy of expansion and quiet disregard had
lasted long enough.  The pretence of being a Conference upon
communications and associated matters had to be dropped.  The time
had come for the Modern State to define itself and clear up its
relations to the past out of which it had arisen, and to all this
world of tradition which was now rapping at its doors.

"Before we disperse," said Arden Essenden, who presided at the
first plenary session, "we must admit some at least of these
delegations, hear them and give them answers to take home with
them.  But first we have to know our mind much more clearly.  What
are we now and what do we intend to do?  The days before us begin a
new chapter in human history.  It is for us to choose the heading
and plan that chapter now."

9.  "Three Courses of Action"

There was no dominant individual of the De Windt character and
quality at the second Basra Conference.  There was no prophetic
direction of the deliberations.  But there was no want of what
used to be called "leadership", and a number of interesting
personalities, the politic Hooper Hamilton; the frank, emphatic
William Ryan; the intricate Shi-lung-tang; M'bangoi, the East
African biologist; Rin Kay, the social psychologist--perhaps the
finest mind in the gathering; Mohini L. Tagore; Morowitz, the
mystical humanist; and Arden Essenden, the fanatic of action, gave
point and definition to the differences of opinion.

They were interesting rather than outstanding men because the
general level of intelligence was a high one.  The gathering had a
personality of its own, wary, resolved to be well informed and to
weigh considerations, but essentially determined.  The presence of
that miscellany of delegations and commissions which besieged the
Conference dramatized the world situation and pressed for
decisions.  "I feel like one of those old world jurymen," wrote
Williams Kapek, "who used to be locked up together until they
returned a verdict.  And you cannot imagine how hot and dry Basra
can sometimes contrive to be."

De Windt and his school of writers had planned the framework of a
new world and shown to what social elements one had to look for its
evocation, but he had given only the most scanty suggestions for
getting rid of the body of the old.  Already in 1965 the Modern
State people had had a fairly distinct vision of our present order.
But few of them had anticipated the diffused toughness of the old
corpus and its capacity for counter-revolutionary exertion.  That
had become oppressively evident by 1975.

Reports on the general situation had been very carefully prepared.
They dealt with the various centres at which the spirit of
opposition was being organized.  Most serious of these were those
former sovereign governments and legal systems, which had seemed
effaced, moribund or prostrate during the desolation of the
Famished and Fever-stricken Fifties.  In 1965 the only government
actively antagonistic to the Controls had been the Soviet
government in Russia.  That antagonism, curiously enough, was not
so great as it had been at first.  The technicians of the
sovietized regions were ousting the politicians; there was now
indeed a working cooperation of Russian transport, communications
and production with the world system under the Controls, and there
seemed a reasonable prospect of ultimate assimilation.  There was
no objection being made to people nominally communists who were
also Fellows of the Modern State, and many Russian scientific and
technical workers were Modern State Fellows and not members of the
communist party at all.  The reports discussed hopefully and
analytically the possibility of some similar process in America and
the Far East.  There also the political and legal structures did
not present insurmountable obstacles to assimilation.  The decline
of humbug in America was bringing out the fundamental constructive
energy of that great synthesis of Western peoples.  But elsewhere
there was increasing evidence that the sovereign state system and
the system of private ownership were fundamentally irreconcilable
with the new conceptions.

The reports gave information, that was in many particulars new to
most of the assembled Fellows, of the very strenuous attempts that
were being made by the reviving national governments in Germany,
France, Italy and Great Britain to resume the manufacture of
aeroplanes and war material.  Whether there was a common agreement
among them was doubtful, but the intention to put up air forces and
organize aerodromes that should be able to ignore the regulations
and refuse the services of the Air and Sea Control was quite plain.
They were finding great difficulty in securing the services of
competent engineers, mechanics and aviators, but the thing was
going on.  Every student in the technical schools of the Control
who failed a test or an examination, or was penalized for
misbehaviour or rejected from the Modern State Fellowship, would
turn up presently as a national government expert.  And the
governments were now setting up their own national technical
schools and attempting to bring the schools and laboratories of the
Control into the "national" educational organization.  Not only was
there a disposition to set up a competing system side by side with
the Controls system, but there was a growing tendency to annex the
organizations, roads, plant, mines, factories, aerodromes, schools,
colleges, laboratories and personnel of the Control that chanced to
be within the jurisdiction of the sovereign government concerned.
The new Bavarian government, the Windsor Parliament and the
government in Rome were all "arranging to take over" these things
within their territories.  They were becoming more explicit about
it every year.  They persisted in regarding the interlocking
Controls as a dangerous international Trust.

This was the burthen of the national missions of observation and
enquiry which were stewing in the sunshine outside the doors of the
Conference--"in a state of tentative menace", as Williams Kapek put

The minor delegations representing groups of owners and organized
local interests had this much in common with the national missions,
that they proposed more or less frankly to resume possession of
properties the Controls had taken hold of and revived, or to impose
burthensome charges.  They varied like the inmates of a zoological
garden in scale and power, but they had one quality in common: an
obstructive litigiousness.

In the frankness of its privacy behind its closed doors, the
Conference sized up these antagonisms and discussed their
treatment.  "There are just three lines of treatment possible,"
said Ryan brutally.  "We can treat with 'em, bribe 'em, or rule
'em.  I'm for a straight rule."

"Or combine those ingredients," said Hooper Hamilton.

The method of treaty-making and a modus vivendi was already in
operation in regard to Russia.  There indeed it was hard to say
whether the communist party or the Modern State movement was in
control, so far had assimilation gone.  And the new spirit in the
old United States was now so "Modern", that the protests of
Washington and of various state governors against the Controls were
received hilariously.  Aeroplanes from Dearborn circled over the
capital and White House and dropped parodies of the President's
instructions to dissolve the Air and Food Trust of America.  All
over that realist continent, indeed, the Controls expanded as a
self-owned business with a complete disregard of political
formalities.  But the European situation was more perplexing.

"Most of these European sovereign governments are no more than
scarecrows," said William Ryan.  "There's no living people behind
them any longer.  Leastway, no living people that matter.  Call
their bluff on them and you'll hear no more about them."

It was Shi-lung-tang who argued against defiance and stated the
case for Bribery.

Bribery in his suave exposition, bribery combined with treaties and
tact, became a highly moral amelioration of direct action.  He
asked the Conference to realize how specialized and rare as yet was
its new forward-looking habit of mind.  When all the work of the
propaganda and schools had been accounted for, it was doubtful if a
twentieth part of the race accepted, or if a tenth understood, even
in the most general terms, the difference between minds trained to
creative conceptions and minds brought up in an atmosphere of
defensive acquisitiveness and property accumulation.  It would take
three or four generations to convert the world to a forward-looking
attitude.  Either the Modern State movement had to seize power
openly now and inaugurate a tyranny that would have to last as long
as it took to turn round the great majority of intelligences into
the new direction, or it had to propitiate, compromise and persuade
these outer masses--UPON THEIR OWN LINES.

"These people will never see things as we see them," he insisted,
making strange gestures and repeating his words to emphasize their
importance.  "They have to live and die, ON THEIR OWN LINES.  It is
not just to impose too much upon them.  It is only as they die out
that the Modern State form of mind can hope to be in a dominant
majority.  Their mental vices are incurable.  Meet them half way,
make things easy for them.  You will save the world three
generations of suffering and bitter conflict."

He unfolded his Machiavellian project.  A greedy acquisitiveness
was part of the make-up of every energetic old world-type.  They
were as incurably voracious as dogs.  And yet we made good friends
and helpers out of dogs.  Their loyalties were at best gang
loyalties; they were none the less greedy because they did at times
hunt in packs.  But they had no fundamental instinctive hostility
to the Modern State.  It was only when the Modern State thwarted
their established habits of behaviour that they snarled at it and
began to fear it.  They could never make a solid front against the
Modern State.  They could always be played off against each other,
one against another; they could be neutralized.  The lesson of
Russia's harsh repression of her bourgeoisie and professional
classes in the Twenties and Thirties was a warning against the
miseries and social damage of too sudden and forcible an attempt to
change ideals of behaviour.  Let the Modern State go more softly
and more kindly.

He went on to detailed suggestions.  With Russia, Spain and
America, bribery need play but a minor rôle.  The ruling mentality
in these countries was now such that the present working agreements
would pass naturally into assimilation in a little while.
Elsewhere there was really no permanent harm in recognizing the old
claims to sovereign and proprietary rights, and securing such a
hold upon leading men that they would keep their hands off the
Modern State propaganda and schools and be content with handsome
subsidies from the Control services and industries.  It would be
cheaper than war.  "If they want a little war now and then among

In spite of Shi-lung-tang's smiling face, there was audible
disapproval at this point.

When he had done, his case for tact and insinuating corruption was
knocked to pieces by Rin Kay.  "If we were a Society of Moral
Supermen," he said, "we might venture to be as disingenuous as
this."  But Mr. Shi-lung-tang forgot that every Fellow in the
Modern State society had two enemies: the acquisitive man outside
and the acquisitive man within.  The point their Chinese friend
missed was the fact that it was much more natural to adopt the
behaviour patterns of the old world than to acquire those of the
Modern State.  The old dispositions were something that was; the
new dispositions were something that had to be made and sustained.
The inner life of a Modern State Fellow was a sustained effort to
be simple and serve simply.  That should take him all his time.  He
could not afford to be intricate and politic.  "We have a difficult
enough task before us just to do what we have to do, plainly and
honestly.  We cannot afford to say and do THIS and mean THAT."
William Ryan supported that with vigour, but Hooper Hamilton spoke
long and elaborately on the other side.  The spirit of the society
was plainly with Kay.

M. L. Tagore, an economic botanist, introduced a new line of
thought into the discussion, or rather he revived the line of
thought of nineteenth-century mystical liberalism.  He said he was
equally against bribery, insincere treaties or any use of force.
He was old-fashioned enough to be a democrat and a believer in the
innate wisdom of the unsophisticated man.  And also he believed in
the supreme value of truth and inaggressiveness.  We must not
outrage the sense of right in man, even if that meant the
abandonment of our immediate objectives.  We had to persuade him.
And we had no right to assume that he did not hold himself to be
right because his conception of conduct differed from ours.  Let
the Modern State society go on with the scientific organization of
the world, yes, and let us go on with the propaganda of its
doctrines in every land.  But let it not lift a hand to compel, not
even to resist evil.  He appealed to the missionary successes of
early Buddhism and Christianity as evidence of the practical
successfulness of spiritual urgency and physical passivity.  He
concluded in a glow of religious enthusiasm, that did not spare him
the contemptuous criticisms of the social psychologists who fell
upon him tooth and nail so soon as he had done.

These speeches, which are to be found in full in the Basra
Conference Reports, vols. 371 and 372, were the three salient types
of opinion in that gathering.  The immense majority were for the
active line, for frankness and rule.  A not inconsiderable
minority, however, wavered behind the leadership of Hooper
Hamilton.  They felt that there were elaborations and refinements
that did not find expression in the more aggressive speeches, that
the use of force could be tempered by tact and that lucidity
towards an objective was compatible with kindliness and concession.

In a number of speeches some of them tried to express this rather
elusive conception of compromise; some of them were not too skilful
as speakers, they went too far in the opposite direction, and on
the whole they tended to drive the movement towards a harder
assertiveness than it might otherwise have expressed.  The problems
of the Russian system and America were abundantly discussed.
Russia now was represented only by technicians and there was
abundant evidence that the repressive influence of the Og-pu had
waned.  Ivan Englehart was again a leading figure.  He assured the
Conference that there would be no trouble from Moscow.  "Russia,"
he said, "is ready to assimilate.  Is eager to assimilate."

Arden Essenden spoke late in the general discussion; he spoke with
a harsh enthusiasm and passionate faith; he carried all the younger
men and most of the older ones with him and he shaped the ultimate

Some of his phrases are, as people used to say, "historical".  He
said, "The World-State is not a thing of the Future.  It is here
and now.  It has always been here and now, since ever men said they
had a common God above them, or talked, however timidly, of the
brotherhood of mankind.  The man who serves a particular state or a
particular ownership in despite of the human commonweal is a
Traitor.  Men who did that have always been Traitors and men who
tolerated them nursed treason in their hearts.  In the past the
World-State had been torn up among three-score-and-ten anarchies
and a countless myriad of proprietors and creditors, and the
socialists and cosmopolitans, the true heirs of the race, were
hunted like criminals and persecuted and killed.

"Now, through the utter failure of those robbers even to maintain
their own social order and keep at peace among themselves, the
world has fallen into our hands.  Power has deserted them, and we,
we here, have Power.  If we do not use it, if we do not use it to
the fullest, we are traitors in our turn.  Are we to tolerate even
a temporary revival of the old system?  In the name of reason, why?
If their brains have got into the wrong grooves--well, we can make
fresh brains.  Are we to connive with, and indulge this riffraff
that waits outside our doors?  Go out and look at them.  Look at
their insincere faces!  Look at their furtive hands.  Weigh what
they say.  Weigh the offers they will make you!"

To us to-day that seems platitudinous and over emphatic, but it
conveyed the sense of the Conference and it led directly to the
general decision with which its proceedings concluded.  The most
significant of these was the increase of the Police of the Air and
Sea Ways to a million men, and the apportionment of a greatly
increased amount of energy to the improvement of their equipment.
There was also to be a great intensification and speeding up of
Modern State education and propaganda.  Provision was also made for
the enlistment of auxiliary forces and services as they might be
needed for the preservation of order; these auxiliaries were to
renounce any allegiance except to the Transport or other Control
that might enlist them.  The Controls were reorganized, and a
central committee, which speedily became known as the World
Council, was appointed by them to act as the speaking head of the
whole system.  The ideas of treaties and contracts with exterior
administrations and of any diplomatic dealings with dissentients
were abandoned.  Instead it was determined that this central
committee, the World Council, should openly declare itself the sole
government of the world and proceed to make the associated Controls
the administrative organization of the planet.

Accordingly a proclamation was prepared to this effect and issued
very widely.  It was broadcast as well as printed and reprinted
from a multitude of centres.  It was "put upon the ether"
everywhere to the exclusion of other matter.  For now the world had
its wireless again in as great abundance already as in the early
Thirties.  So simultaneously the whole planet received it.  It
whipped up the awaiting miscellany at Basra into a foam of excited
enquiry.  All over the world city crowds or solitary workers
received it, open-mouthed.  At first there was very little
discussion.  The effect was too stunning for that.  People began to
talk after a day or so.

We give it as it was issued: a singularly poor piece of prose when
we consider the magnificence of its matter.  It seems to have been
drafted by Arden Essenden, with some assistance from Hamilton and
amended in a few particulars by the Council.

"The Council for World Affairs, constituted by the Air and Sea
Control and its associates, declares:

"That between 1950 and 1965 this planet became derelict through the
incapacity of its ostensible rulers and property owners to keep the
peace, regulate production and distribution, and conserve and guide
the common life of mankind;

"That chaos ensued, and

"That it became urgently necessary to build up a new world
administration amidst the ruins.

"This the Air and Sea Control did.

"This administration has now been organized about a Central Council
for World Affairs, which is making this statement to you.

"It is the only sovereign upon this planet.  There is now no other
primary authority from end to end of the earth.  All other
sovereignty and all proprietary rights whatever that do not conduce
directly to the general welfare of mankind ceased to exist during
the period of disorder, and cannot be revived.

"The Council has its air and sea ways, its airports, dockyards,
factories, mines, plantations, laboratories, colleges and schools
throughout the world.  These are administered by its officials and
protected by its own police, and the latter are instructed to
defend these organizations whenever and wherever it may be
necessary against the aggression of unauthorized persons.

"In every centre of population there are now Modern State nuclei
and Control agents conducting the educational work of the Council
and in reasonable contact with the local economic life, with local
enterprises, local authorities and individuals not yet affiliated
to the Modern State organization.  The time has come for all these
various quasi independent organs of business and administration to
place themselves in orderly relations to the new Government of the
Whole World.

"We are constituting a Bureau of Transition, for the simplification
and modernization of the business activities, the educational and
hygienic services, production, distribution and the preservation of
order and security throughout our one home and garden, our pleasure
ground and the source of all our riches--the earth, our Mother
Earth, our earth and yours.

"Without haste or injustice and without delay, with a due regard to
your comfort, your welfare and your wishes, the Bureau will set
itself to bring your life into sound and permanent correlation with
the one human commonweal."

"It is usurpation!" cried a voice, when the declaration was put to
the vote as a whole.

"You decide upon Force," said Shi-lung-tang.  "I did my best--"

"But this means War!" cried Tagore.

"No," said Arden Essenden.  "There is no more War.  This is not
War--nor Revolution.  This is the recognition of a Revolution and
Government again."

10.  The Life-Time Plan

It is still a debatable question how far that hard decisive
declaration of the Socialist World-State at Basra was not
premature.  There are those who consider it the most timely of
acts; there are some who believe it should have been made as early
as the first Conference in 1965.  The discussion became involved
with the intellectual and moral conflicts that went on under the
Air Dictatorship.  It mingles with the controversies of to-day.
But certainly, from 1978 onward, the Modern State movement lost
something of its pristine mental freshness, lost openness, lost
much of that almost irresponsible adventurousness that had flung
the network of transport and trading controls so swiftly about the
earth.  "We have swallowed the world, but now we have to digest
it," said Arden Essenden.  The old defiant repudiation of the past
was replaced by a firm and sometimes rather heavy insistence upon
the order of the future.

There was nowhere any immediate uprising in response to the
proclamation of a World Government.  Although it had been plainly
coming for some years, although it had been endlessly feared and
murmured against, it found no opposition prepared anywhere.
Thirteen years had wrought a profound change in Soviet Russia and
the large areas of China in association with Moscow.  The practical
assimilation of Soviet Transport and Communications was almost
tacitly accepted.  The details of the amalgamation were entrusted
to committees flying between Moscow and Basra.  All over the world,
wherever there was any sort of governing or managing body not
already associated with the Modern State System, it fell to
debating just how and to what extent it could be incorporated or
how it could resist incorporation.  Everywhere there were Modern
State nuclei ready to come into conference and fully informed upon
local or regional issues.  The plain necessity for a systematic
"renucleation" of the world became evident.  The "Section of
Training and Advertisement" had long since worked out the broad
lines of a modus vivendi between the old and the new.

That modus vivendi is called variously The Life Time Plan or--with
a memory of that pioneer effort in planning, The Five Year Plan of
the Russian Dictatorship--The Thirty Year Plan.  Independent
businesses that respected certain standards of treatment by the
workers, which would accept a certain amount of exterior control,
technical and financial, and which maintained a certain standard of
efficiency, were to be accorded not simply tolerance but a
reasonable protection.  Even if their methods were suddenly
superseded by new devices, they were to be kept running until they
could be wound up, their products were still to be taken by the
Controls.  This was far better treatment than was ever accorded
superseded producers under the smash-and-grab conditions of the
competitive system.  In the same way, whenever possible the small
owning peasant or the agricultural tenant was not dispossessed; he
was given a fixed price for his output, counselled or directed in
the matter of improvements and so merged by bearable degrees into
the class of agricultural workers.  This, as Rupert Bordinesco put
it (Brief Explanation: Historical Documents Series 1969), gave them
"time to die out".  Because it was an integral part of the Life
Time Plan that the new generation should be educated to develop a
service mentality in the place of a proprietary mentality.  There
were to be no independent merchants or independent cultivators
under twenty in 1980, none under thirty in 1990 and none under
forty in 2000.  This not only gave the old order time to die out;
it gave the new order time to develop the more complex system of
direction, mechanism and delivery it needed soundly and healthily.
The lesson of the mental discords and tragic disproportions in the
headlong development of the first Russian Five Year Plan--
disproportions as monstrous and distressful as the hypertrophies
and atrophies of the planless "Capitalist System" of the nineteenth
century--had been marked and learnt.

It did not trouble the World Council that to retain millions of
small businesses and tens of millions of small cultivators the
whole world over for so long meant a much lower efficiency of
production.  "These older people have to be fed and employed,"
wrote Bordinesco, "and now they will never learn or be able to
adapt themselves to a novel routine of life.  Help them to do their
job a little better.  Save them from the smart people who want to
prey upon them--usurers, mortgagers, instalment salesmen,
intimidators, religious or secular; and for the rest--leave them in

The Brief Explanation also drew a moral from the "Period of Glut"
in the Twenties, which preceded the collapse of the Thirties, when
the whole world was full of unconsumed goods and unemployed people.
This, Bordinesco pointed out, was the inevitable consequence of an
unregulated progressive system of private enterprise.  "There is no
sense in throwing a man out of an employment, however old-
fashioned, unless there is a new job for him.  There is no sense in
bringing children into the world unless there is education,
training and useful work for them to do.  We have to see that each
new generation is arranged numerically in different categories of
training and objective from those of its predecessor.  The Russians
learnt this necessity in their great experiment.  As we progress
towards a scientific production of primary substances, the actual
proportion of agricultural workers, miners, forest wardens,
fishermen and so forth in the community must fall.  So also the
proportion of ordinary industrial workers must fall.  The heavy
industries will precede the light in that.  A certain compensation
will be caused by a steady rise in the standard of living and
particularly by what De Windt called 'the rebuilding of the world',
new cities, new roads, continually renewed houses everywhere."
(This was foreshadowed to a certain extent by the French plan for
"Outillage National" and the German housing schemes in operation as
early as the late Twenties, plans and schemes ultimately strangled
by the budget-balancing fanatics.)  But even that diversion of
energy from the production of basic materials and small commodities
to big structural undertakings would not suffice to use up the
continually released human power in the community.  At this point
appeared what Bordinesco called the "enlarging categories", which
were to consume more than they gave.  There had to be increasing
numbers of people engaged in education, in the developing and
ordering of knowledge, in experimental science, in artistic
production, in making life more abundant and ample.  To that
expansion no limit could be set.

"We men have a lease of this planet," runs the Brief Explanation,
"for some millions of years.  It is foolish not to press on to
better life, but it is more foolish to hurry frantically and
cruelly.  The history of the past two centuries is one sustained
warning against the disemployment of men and women for whom there
is no other use.  Before we teach, our teachers have to learn;
before we direct comprehensively, we must have experience in
direction.  We must always be attempting a little more than we can
do, but we must not be attempting the impossible.  We must advance
without needless delay, but without waste, hurry, or cruelty.  Do
not be fearful or jealous of the advent of the new conditions.  No
honest worker, man or woman, has anything to fear from the coming
of the Modern State."

11.  The Real Struggle for Government Begins

But the rulers of the new World-State, as their enlargements of the
Air and Sea Police made manifest, were under no illusion that the
new order could be established in the world by declarations and
"Brief Explanations", and hard upon its proposals for conferences
and assimilations came the organization of its local constabularies
and the regulations that made the reorganized nuclei the sole means
of communication of independent local authorities, businesses and
individuals with the central Controls.  In nearly every part of the
earth the nuclei had prepared a personnel of sympathizers and
auxiliaries, varying in character with local conditions, outside
the ranks of the Fellowship.  The khaki uniform of the street and
road guardians, differing very little then from the one familiar to
us to-day, appeared as if by magic all over the world, and the
symbol of the winged disc broke out upon aeroplanes, post offices,
telephone and telegraph booths, road signs, transport vehicles and
public buildings.  There was still no discord with Russia; there
the blazon of the wings was put up side by side with the old hammer
and sickle.

Nowhere at first was there any armed insurrectionary movement.  We
realize from this how complete had been the collapse of the
organized patriotic states of the World War period.  They had no
national newspapers, no diplomats, no Foreign Offices any more.
There had been no paper for the former and there had been no
salaries for the latter.  Lacking vocal organs, nationalism as such
was silenced.  There were, however, protests, in a considerable
variety of ineffectiveness, from local self-appointed bodies, and
much passive resistance and failure to comply.  But even the
removal of the winged sign was infrequent, and usually where that
occurred nothing further ensued when the air police came whirring
out of the sky to replace it.

This phase of tacit acquiescence was, however, only temporary,
until the opposition could gather itself into new forms and phases
and discover methods of organization.  The elements of antagonism
were abundant enough.  The Fascist garrison in Rome, claiming to be
the government of all Italy, was one of the earliest to make its
challenge.  It had a number of airmen, unlicensed for various
reasons by the Transport Control, and it now sent a detachment of
its Black Shirts to occupy the new aeroplane factory outside the
old Roman town of Turin, and to seize a small aerodrome and
whatever air material was to be found in it at Ostia.  The winged
disc at these two places was replaced by the national fasces.  A
proclamation was made and disseminated as widely as the restricted
means of publication permitted, calling for an assembly of the old
League of Nations and reviving a long defunct phrase of President
Wilson's, "the self-determination of peoples."  The King of Italy,
after a diligent search, was found inoffensively farming in
Piedmont, and the long closed palace of the Quirinal was reopened
and made habitable for him.

The new air police had been waiting with a certain impatience for
provocation of this sort.  It had been equipped with a new type of
gas bomb releasing a gas called Pacificin, which rendered the
victim insensible for about thirty-six hours and was said to have
no further detrimental effect.  With this it now proceeded to
"treat" the long resented customs house at Ventimiglia and the
factory and aerodrome in dispute.

At Ostia the police planes found a complication of the situation.

An extraordinary ceremony was in progress in the aerodrome.  Three
new aeroplanes had just been brought thither from the Turin
factory, and they were being blessed by the Pope (Pope Alban III).

For the still vital Catholic Church had always been given to the
blessing of implements, shops, boats, bridges, automobiles, flags,
guns, battleships, new buildings and the like.  It was a ceremony
that advertised the Church, gratified the faithful, and did no
perceptible harm to the objects blessed.  And this particular
occasion had been made something of a demonstration against the
World Council.  The Pope had come; the King and the reigning Duce
were present.  Sound films made only a few minutes before the
arrival of the air police show a gathering as brilliant, with its
uniforms and canonicals, as anything that might have occurred
before the World War.  Choristers in cassocks and charming little
lace collars chant, acolytes swing censers; the venerable Holy
Father sits on a throne under a canopy, on a large crimson-draped
platform.  There was a muster of at least three thousand Black

The action of the Council commander, Luigi Roselli, was precipitate.

The subsequent enquiry intimates pretty clearly that he betrayed
anti-clerical bias.  He had been chosen for this task because he
was himself an Italian, and so, it was thought, less likely to
exacerbate any latent nationalist feeling.  (It is an interesting
sidelight on the times that the Fascist commandatore on the ground
was Mario Roselli, his elder half-brother.)  His general
instructions had been to seize the aerodrome and the aeroplanes
with as little violence as possible.  The Pacificin was only to be
used in case of armed resistance.  But the sight of the cassocks,
the birettas, the canopies and ornaments and robes, the sound of
chanting and the general ecclesiastical atmosphere were too much
for the young man's prejudices.  His squadron circled in formation
over the aerodrome.  The ceremony proceeded with dignity in spite
of the noise of his propellers.  For it seemed incredible that any
human being would dare to gas the Pope.

"Let go," said Luigi Roselli, too malicious to realize the
brutality of his outrage.

The gas containers came crashing into the arena.

"Just for a moment," says one of the aviators concerned, in a
memorable letter, "the chanting rose louder.  They showed pluck,
those priests.  Hardly one of them broke ranks.  Then they crumpled
up in their places, drifting down on their knees for the most part.
It was queer the way you saw the gas spreading among them; it was
like a bed of flowers dying and the death spreading out from a lot
of centres.  The old boy on the throne didn't turn a hair.  He had
his hands together and his head bowed.  You couldn't tell when it
took him.  The Fascist guard and the King's party weren't anything
like so dignified.  They gesticulated, they yelled.  They were
defiant and all that.  And some ran about a bit before the stuff
got them.

"Of course, you must understand, the whole lot thought they were
being killed.  None of them could have known anything of this new
stuff.  WE didn't know until a fortnight ago.

"We had no gas masks on our bird, so I didn't take part in the
landing party which seized the new 'planes.

"The last I saw of that aerodrome, it looked like some old Turkish
carpet, gone threadbare in places but still with some brightish
patches.  Perfect garden of sleep.  I hope nobody robbed any of
them before they came to.  But Roselli, I believe, dropped proper
instructions about it all in Rome. . . ."

Unhappily the raid had not been so completely bloodless as this
young man supposed.  A youthful priest, Odet Buanarotti, had been
struck on the head by one of the glass containers and killed
outright.  He was subsequently canonized; the last saint and martyr
to be inscribed in the Latin hagiography. . . .

At this point Raven's written transcript breaks off abruptly.



1.  Gap in the Text.

2.  Melodramatic Interlude.

3.  Futile Insurrection.

4.  The Schooling of Mankind.
  (Editor's Note.)

5.  The Text Resumes: The Tyranny of the Second Council.

6.  Æsthetic Frustration: The Note Books of Ariston Theotocopulos.

7.  The Declaration of Mégève.

1.  Gap in the Text

So far I have been transcribing, with very little correction and no
alteration, the text of Raven's dream book as he left it fully
written out.  But at this point, that fully written out history
breaks off.  The record of the next seventy or eighty years is
represented only by an untidy mass of notes in the perfectly
abominable private shorthand Raven used.  Then comes the concluding
chapter fully written out again.

I cannot say with any certainty why Raven left this very vital part
of his story obscure and confused while he went on to the very last
part of all.  But I have my own ideas of what happened in his
brain.  In the first place he had a very human impulse to realize
the issue of this world revolution that was unfolding in these
notes, and it was easier, therefore, because it was more
attractive, for him to write out the later part first.  And in the
next the intervening matter was really much more intricate for him
to handle.  It had, if I may use the expression, "come through his
mind" with difficulty and against resistances.  His general ideas
had been prepared for the new wars, for the post-war breakdown and
for a world rule based on air power, and they had also been
prepared for the steadily progressive World-State of the final
phase.  But they had not been prepared for the profound and complex
mental and spiritual struggles of three-quarters of a century which
inaugurated the new order.  Those he had not thought out.

Whether it was really a clairvoyant vision he had of a real future
text book of history, or whether all this matter was an eruption
from his subconscious mind, hardly affects the manifest fact that
all this part came against the grain.  One of the strongest
arguments for the view that this Outline of the Future was evolved
by Raven from his inner consciousness is the fact that there are
several passages in which he seems to argue with himself, and that
the quiet unhurrying assurance of the earlier and later narratives
is not sustained in these middle parts.

I do not think it was mere chance that pulled him up precisely at
the point when he came to the gassing of the Pope and the martyrdom
of Saint Odet of Ostia.  I think that this incident struck him as
cardinal, as marking a supremely significant corner which humanity
was turning.  It was something that had to happen and it was
something he had never let his mind dwell upon.  It ended a
practical truce that had endured for nearly three centuries in the
matter of moral teaching, in the organization of motive, in what
was then understood as religion.  It was the first killing in a new
religious conflict.  The new government meant to rule not only the
planet but the human will.  One thing meant the other.  It had
realized that to its own surprise.  And Raven, with an equal
surprise, had realized that so it had to be.

Nearly a year earlier the One World-State had been declared at
Basra.  There already it had been asserted plainly that a new order
must insist upon its own specific education, and that it could not
tolerate any other forms of training for the world-wide lives it
contemplated.  But to say a thing like that is not to realize its
meaning.  Things of that sort had been said before, and passed like
musical flourishes across the minds of men.  The new government did
not apprehend the fullness of its own intentions until this
unpremeditated act of supreme sacrilege forced decision upon it.
But now it had struck down the very head of Catholic Christianity
and killed an officiating priest in the midst of his ministrations.
It had gripped that vast world organization, the Catholic Church,
and told it in effect to be still for evermore.  It was now awake
to its own purpose.  It might have retreated or compromised.  It
decided to go on.

Ten days later air guards descended upon Mecca and closed the chief
holy places.  A number of religious observances were suppressed in
India, and the slaughter-houses in which kosher food was prepared
in an antiquated and unpleasant manner for orthodox Jews were
closed throughout the world.  An Act of Uniformity came into
operation everywhere.  There was now to be one faith only in the
world, the moral expression of the one world community.

Raven was taken unawares, as the world of 1978 was taken unawares,
by this swift unfolding of a transport monopoly into a government,
a social order and a universal faith.  And yet the experiment of
Soviet Russia and the practical suppression of any other religion
than the so-called communism that had been forced upon it might
well have prepared his mind for the realization that for any new
social order there must be a new education of all who were to live
willingly and helpfully in it, and that the core of an education is
a religion.  Plainly he had not thought out all that such a
statement means.  Like almost all the liberal-minded people of our
time, he had disbelieved in every form of contemporary religion,
and he had tolerated them all.  It had seemed to him entirely
reasonable that minds could be left to take the mould of any
pattern and interpretation of life that chanced upon them without
any serious effect upon their social and political reactions.  It
is extraordinary how such contradictory conceptions of living still
exist side by side in our present world with only a little mutual
nagging.  But very evidently that is not going to be accepted by
the generations that are coming.  They are going to realize that
there can be only one right way of looking at the world for a
normal human being and only one conception of a proper scheme of
social reactions, and that all others must be wrong and misleading
and involve destructive distortions of conduct.

Raven's dream book, as it unfolded the history of the last great
revolution in human affairs to him, shattered all the evasive
optimism, all the kindly disastrous toleration and good fellowship
of our time, in his mind.  If there was to be peace on earth and
any further welfare for mankind, if there was to be an end to wars,
plunderings, poverty and bitter universal frustration, not only the
collective organization of the race but the moral making of the
individual had to begin anew.  The formal revolution that had taken
place was only the prelude to the real revolution; it provided only
the frame, the Provisional Government, within which the essential
thing, mental reconstruction, had now to begin.

That precarious first world government with its few millions of
imperfectly assimilated adherents, which now clutched the earth,
had to immobilize or destroy every facile system of errors,
misinterpretations, compensations and self-consolations that still
survived to confuse the minds of men; it had to fight a battle
against fear, indolence, greed and jealousy in every soul in the
world, the souls of its own people most of all, and win.  Or it had
to lapse.  It had to do that within a definite time.  If it did not
win within that time, then dissension and relapse were inevitable
and one more century of blundering and futility would have to be
added to the long record of man's martyrdom.  This new régime had
to clean up the racial mind or fail, and if it failed then in all
probability it would leave the race to drift back again to animal
individualism, and so through chaos to extinction.  Failures in the
past had been possible without general disaster, because they were
partial and local, but this was the decisive world effort.

2.  Melodramatic Interlude

I have remarked already how impersonal is this school history of
the year 2006 in comparison with the histories of our own time.
Politicians and statesmen pass like the shadows of general forces,
royalties peep and vanish like mice behind the wainscot.  They
vanish at last altogether--unobtrusively.  Now and then this
history picks out individuals, Henry Ford for instance, or De
Windt, Winston Churchill or Woodrow Wilson, not as heroes and
leaders but as types and witnesses.  They manifest streams of
tendency in the social brain, systems of ideas at a point of
maximum effectiveness.

Then suddenly at this point the history lapses into something like
melodrama.  For a phase personalities assume such an importance as
to seem to dominate the world's affairs, as Cæsar and Cleopatra did
or Mirabeau and Marie Antoinette.  I think some explanatory links
must be missing here, some comments that might have pointed the
value of this episode in illuminating the play of motive that led
to the Air Dictatorship.  But let me give it as it came to me.

The Air and Sea Control and the organization of the associated
subsidiary Controls had been the work of a group of keen young men,
moved to action by the growing disorder of life and directly
inspired by De Windt and his school of writers.  They had been full
of generosity, enthusiasm and confidence.  The first World Council
elected in 1978 included most of these leaders of '65, now coming
to middle age, one or two older acquisitions and only two additions
from among the younger men.  Arden Essenden, with his vigour of
initiative, was not only the chairman but the natural leader of the
first World Council.  Only Ivan Englehart could compare with him in
power of personality.  There were finer and nobler minds present,
but none others so emphatic and so available for the crude uses of
popular admiration.

There was, it seems, a curiosity in the world about Essenden; his
name was better known than any of his colleagues; his portrait,
though indeed through nothing worse than acquiescence on his part,
got into circulation, as newspapers began to abound again.  It was
the method of the new world government to have no presidential or
secretarial signatures to its public announcements; it was stated
simply that the "Control", whichever it was, or the Council
suggested, stated, proposed or had decided, and the World-State
seal with its winged disc authenticated the document.  But the idea
spread by impalpable means that Essenden, who was known to have
made the decisive speech for immediate world government at the
second Basra Conference, might well have put his name whenever that
seal appeared.  His prestige grew and came back to his ears.  There
can be no doubt that his consciousness of a vague exterior support
affected his attitude towards his colleagues and their common task.

The historians of our text book, so far as some difficult passages
in the stenography can be deciphered, weigh the good and bad
effects of this reinforcement of Essenden's natural impatient
decisiveness.  They bring in other instances and compare him with
other dictators.  Indisputably there are crises in human affairs so
urgent that many worthy considerations and qualifications are
better disregarded and overborne rather than that action should be
delayed.  These critics of our time study the amount of
justification that can be made out for Mussolini, for Stalin,
Kemal, Hitler and the various other dictators during the economic
debacle of the West, and I find this judgment of posterity very
discordant with my own profoundly liberal and Anglo-Saxon
prejudices.  They stress the hopeless indeterminateness of the
preceding parliamentary régime more than I should do.

They do not extend anything like the same charity to Essenden that
they do to the earlier dictators.  He played the "strong man" rôle
half a century too late.  The pattern of development, they decide,
had been fully provided by De Windt and his fellow theorists.
Essenden, they insist, did not so much lead as "speak first", and
with a needless haste, when the general decision was imminent.  He
induced the committee to strike too soon and too harshly at the old
religious and political traditions that seemed to stand in the way
of the Modern State.  He found some of his colleagues slow in
grasping things that seemed obvious to him.  He was impatient and

Quite early after the declaration of world sovereignty there were
altercations in the committee meetings between him on the one hand
and William Ryan and Hooper Hamilton on the other.  Shi-lung-tang
also becomes an inexplicable thorn in Essenden's side, an
enervating influence full of insidious depreciation.  We find Rin
Kay intervening with a gentle firmness in these disputes and
Englehart fretting openly at their dissensions.

This new world government, one must realize, was carrying on under
conditions that were often saturated with emotion.  There was still
much uncertainty in the outlook; and this perhaps let in adventure
and romance.  The World Council was in effective possession of
world power, but not in unchallenged possession.  Even in 2000
C.E., nineteen-twentieths of mankind were still unassimilated to
the organization.  If the world was not rebellious it was mutinous,
and there were plenty of alert and intelligent people in
opposition, estranged people or people shaped to forms of thought
altogether uncongenial to the reconditioning of human affairs on
Modern State lines.

It was inevitable that these disharmonies between the leading
figures at the centre of things, and the similar veins of discord
that broke the solidarity of the Fellowship with a thousand
intricate streaks and patches of weakness, should find echoes and
misinterpretations in the greater world outside the machine.  That
greater world was still prepared for heroes and villains, ready for
blind partisanships and storms of suspicion.  It wanted drama in
its government.  A legend came into being which exaggerated a
supposed want of sympathy on the part of Essenden for the
"priggishness" and "petty tyrannies" of the various Controls.  He
was supposed to be nobler stuff.  He was credited with the
intention of taking things into his own hands altogether and ruling
the world in a more generous and popular spirit.  As the history
puts it:  "An autocrat has always been the imaginative refuge of
the crowd from hard and competent aristocracy."

That Arden Essenden ever plotted to realize these dreams there is
no evidence at all.  No word, much less any deed, is on record to
show that he was unfaithful to the Modern State.  But there can be
no doubt that he felt that he was a fine figure and very necessary
to the World Republic.  He felt, as Stalin had done before him,
that men could not do without him.

And then abruptly women come back into the history.  We find a love
intrigue flung across the stream of history.  I did not notice
until I came to this part of the world story how small a part women
had played in the drama that began with the World War.  In most
countries they had been emancipated and given equal political
rights with men before that disaster.  That achieved, they vanish
out of the picture throughout four decades of violence.  There were
indeed women leaders in the early stages of the Russian Revolution,
but none filled a decisive rôle.  And for all the leadership women
exercised between the Twenties and the Eighties they might have
been every one of them in kitchen, nursery, hospital, or harem.
They lost what little political significance they had when queens
went out of fashion.  A considerable proportion of the Modern State
Fellowship was feminine, but no women occupied decisive positions
in the scheme.  There were none on the World Council.  They were
doing vitally important work, educational, secretarial, executive,
and the like, but it was ancillary work that did not lead to
individual distinction.

But at this point the historian of the year 2106 breaks his
inadvertent taboo and two women's names appear, the names of
Elizabeth Horthy and Jean Essenden, and we find the threads of
human destiny running askew about a story of passionate love and
passionate misbehaviour.

Elizabeth Horthy, who caused the downfall and execution of Arden
Essenden, was evidently a woman of splendid appearance and
unfaltering conduct.  She was an air pilot, and she seems to have
liked to wear her uniform on occasions when most women would have
been in a robe.  She knew, says the history, what suited her.  She
was tall and evidently beautifully made; she "lifted her chin", it
seems; she had a "broad brow" and a "serene" face.  This I learn
from quotations that are given from Essenden's letters to her.
They are the letters of a man quite artlessly in love.  But there
is nothing in the notes to tell us whether she was dark or fair,
what colour of eyes looked out from under that "broad brow", nor
what sort of voice she had.  Her love letters seem to have been
pithy and extraordinarily indiscreet.  Of her charm and distinction
there can be no doubt.  She was one of those women who seem radiant
to men.  She was "like sunshine"; she was "like heartening music".
Again I quote Essenden.  She made men her friends, except for
Hooper Hamilton, who manifestly felt some obscure resentment
against her.

Now this young woman, with her obvious "bravery" and a powerful
disposition for romance, seems to have come to Basra in the train
of William Ryan.  It is possible but improbable that she was his
mistress.  Apparently she took little or no interest in the immense
task of the World Revolution except as a suitable background for
her exciting personal adventure.  She seems to have fallen in love
with Essenden at sight and he with her.  It may be she came to
Basra intending to do that.  Something theatrical about him was not
too theatrical for her.  They were both theatrical.  She liked
things to be magnificent, and perhaps her taste for magnificence
was stronger than her critical powers.

She seems to have given herself to him without hesitation or
qualification or concealment.  Theirs was--again I quote those
artless letters of his--"the sort of love that flaunts itself like
a flag".

But there was a third principal in this primitive drama, the wife
of Essenden, a woman of great energy, great possessiveness and
obtrusive helpfulness.  It had been her vanity to "inspire"
Essenden.  And in the cast of the drama was Ryan, loudly resentful
at Essenden "stealing" his "air girl", and Hooper Hamilton,
inexplicably malignant.  We are left to guess at the incidents and
details of the drama, which was after all a very commonplace drama,
only that it was magnified to the scale of the world stage.  It
culminated in Jean Essenden bringing a charge before the World
Council against her husband of being concerned in a reactionary
plot against the Modern State.  She had, she said, intercepted
letters, though none were ever produced.  The historian of the year
2106, reviewing the particulars of the case, declared that there
was no real evidence at all of any guilty associations of either
Elizabeth Horthy or Essenden with the widespread movement that
certainly existed for a monarchist and individualist reaction.  But
at the time the accusation was all too plausible.  In some of her
scrawled notes to him it seems Elizabeth called him "my King".

Moreover, Jean Essenden repeated the most incredible conversations
with her husband: boasts of future glory, dark threats at his
colleagues, strange replies to her remonstrances.  She at least was
an inflexible Modern Republican.  Afterwards in a storm of remorse
she retracted all this evidence, but only when it was too late.
Probably it was half true.  Probably it was reality a little
refracted in her mind.

It was Hamilton who sealed Essenden's fate.  He presided over the
Special Court that had been formed to try the case.  "Some of the
evidence may be given with a motive," he said, looking at the white
face of the accusing wife.  "But it is a small matter that Essenden
should or should not be a party in this conspiracy.  His real
offence is that he should have allowed this situation to develop,
that he should have permitted his attention to wander from the
services of the Republic to personal gratifications--personal
gratifications and displays.  At least he has been guilty of
egotism.  He has sacrificed himself and the interest of the world
that has wrapped about him to an intensely personal drama.  The
question of his specific guilt is an altogether minor matter.  The
question before us is not, 'What has Essenden done?' but, 'What are
we going to do about Essenden?'  There is need for repression
coming; civil war and bloodshed are plainly upon us.  This is no
time for Great Lovers.  Essenden has become ambiguous.  He cannot
lead us, and--how can we do without him?  Things have come to this,
Essenden, you are INCONVENIENT.  Apart from this quarrel of the

The notes quote these words from the gramophone records of the
trial.  For it appears that the historian of the year 2106 could
sit at his desk and listen to the steel-band record of the
proceedings; note the speeches and mark the inflexions of the

There was a pause, and then Essenden cleared his throat.  "I see
that I am in the way."

It was decided that there should be no open trial and condemnation.
That would have precipitated the revolt.  A tabloid was to be given
to him, and he was to take it privately.  He might "sit in the
spring sunshine amidst flowers and green trees" and take it in his
own time.

The record was cut deep, it seems, by the scream of Jean Essenden,
protesting that that last half-hour should not be spent by the two
lovers together.

Through all the years to come those steel ribbons will preserve the
shrill intonations of those distressful moments.  "I can't bear
THAT!" cried Jean Essenden--down to the end of time.

"No," Elizabeth's actual words are given; "there is no need for you
to be hurt any more.  Don't be distressed, Jean, any more.  It's
over.  It's all over for ever.  I will go now.  Out of the court
now.  I never meant to hurt Arden in this way.  How was I to know?
There is no need at all for us two even to say Good-Bye or be
together any more.  Jean, you couldn't help yourself.  You had to
do what you have done.  But I never meant to hurt you.  Or him."

Those are her words as the shorthand notes give them, but we shall
never hear the sound of them.  But the man who wrote them down, a
century after they were spoken, heard them as he wrote, heard her
voice weaken, if it weakened.  Was she speaking or was she making a
speech?  We are left guessing how far these words of hers betrayed
her sense of drama or whether it had indeed the simple generosity
it may have had.

There is no description of the last moments of Arden Essenden, the
man who had drafted the proclamation that founded the World-State.
Possibly he did sit for awhile in some sunlit garden and then
quietly swallowed his tabloid.  He may have thought about his life
of struggle, of his early days in the years of devastation and of
the long battle for the World-State for which he had fought so
stubbornly.  Or perhaps according to all the rules of romance he
thought only of Elizabeth.  Much more probably he was too tired and
baffled to think coherently and sat dully in the sunshine staring
at those flowers which make the colophon to his story.  Then the
book closed for him.  He died somewhere in the North of France, but
the notes do not say precisely where.

They are more explicit about the fate of Elizabeth Horthy, who
killed herself that day.  There was no tabloid for her.  She took
her nearest way out of the world by flying her machine to an
immense height and throwing herself out.  She went up steeply.  It
was as though she was trying to fly right away from a planet which
had done with romance.  "The aeroplane ceased to climb; it hung
motionless, a quivering speck in the sky, and then began to waver
and fall like a dead leaf.  It was too high for anyone to see that
its pilot had leapt free from it and was also falling through the
air.  A mere tattered rag of body was found amidst the branches of
a little thicket of oak near Chantilly."

A fortnight after Hooper Hamilton also succumbed to "egotism" and
took an overdose of sleeping-draught at his summer-house in the
Aland Isles.

And with that this novelette-like interlude ends.  It is elementary
in its crudity.  It is out of key with all that precedes it and all
that follows.  We are told there were other "stories" about the men
of the First Council, but these other stories after this one sample
are left to our imaginations.  Its immense irrelevance tears the
fabric of our history.  But through the gap we see the pitiful
imagination of humanity straining for a supreme intensity of
personal passion.

Did that young woman as she stepped out upon nothingness above the
cirrus clouds feel that her life had been worth while?  The history
calls her, "that last romantic".

3.  Futile Insurrection

The notes show the historians of 2106 convinced that there was no
real complicity between Elizabeth Horthy and the leaders of the
Federated Nationalists who now broke out into open revolt.  The
impression of her character made by her recorded words and deeds
is, they argue, quite incompatible with the idea that if she had
indeed been a revolutionary, she would have abandoned her fellow
conspirators for a melodramatic suicide because of the execution of
Essenden.  Far more like her would it have been for her to fly to
the rebels in Germany and give herself passionately to avenge and
vindicate his memory.  But plainly she did not care a rap for the
monarchist conspiracy, and it is possible that she did not know of
its existence.  Both she and Essenden, there can be little doubt,
lived and died loyal, in intention at least, to the Modern State.

But it suited the revolt to seize upon her tragedy and use her as
one of its symbols, and it was long believed that Essenden had
retracted the socialist cosmopolitanism of the Basra Conference in
favour of Federated Nationalism.  It is interesting to find the
legend of the poor old League of Nations presently become more
powerful than its living reality, and ironical that it should
supply the formula for an attempt to divide up the world again into
"sovereign" fragments.  The declaration of the so-called Prince
Manfred of Bavaria put the League into the forefront of his
promises.  Alternatively he spoke of it as a World Federation of
Free Peoples, and he promised Freedom of Thought, Freedom of
Teaching, Freedom of Trade and Enterprise, Freedom of Religious
Profession, Freedom from Basic English, Freedom from Alien
Influence everywhere.  As a foretaste of these good things, he
released a little pogrom in the Frankfurt district where a few
professing Jews still lingered.

[From this point to another which I shall indicate when I reach it
I am able to give a fairly trustworthy transcription of the notes--

There was never anything that amounted to actual war during this
period of disturbance; nothing that could be called a battle.
The World Council had the supreme advantage of holding all
communications in its hands, and, as military and naval experts
could have told the rebels, there is no warfare without
communications.  Prince Manfred issued some valiant proclamations
"to the World" before he took his tabloid, but since Basic English
was repudiated by his movement, they were translated into only a
few local languages, printed on stolen paper by hidden hand-
presses, and sought after chiefly by collectors.  The jamming of
the public radio service was mischief rather than revolt.  At first
there was a certain revival of the manufacture of munitions in
factories that had been seized by rebel bands, but generally these
ended their output after at most a few weeks under the soporific
influence of Pacificin.  There were a few deserters from the Air
Police and a certain number of small private aeroplanes in
nationalist hands; but the net work of registration, vigilant
police patrols, and the absence of independent aerodromes soon
swept rebellion out of the air.

There remained the bomb, the forbidden pistol, the dagger and the
ambush.  It was these that made the revolt formidable, forced
espionage, search raids, restriction of private movement and
counter violence upon the World Control, and rendered the last
stages of the struggle a grim and indeed a terrible chapter in
human history.  In narrow streets, in crowds and conferences, in
the bureaus of administrations and upon the new roads, lurked the
death-dealing patriot.  He merged insensibly with the merely
criminal organizations of blackmail and crime.

It was this murder campaign, the "Warfare of the Silenced and
Disarmed", as Prince Manfred put it, which stiffened the face and
hardened the heart of the Modern State for half a century.  It took
to "preventive" measures; it began to suspect and test; that
horrible creature, the agent provocateur, was already busy again
before 2000.  He was busy for another decade; he did not certainly
vanish from the world until the Declaration of Mégève in 2059, but
there is no record of his activity after 2030.  And the government
which had begun its killing with Arden Essenden and Prince Manfred
came to realize the extreme decisiveness and facility of the lethal
tabloid.  For the grosser forms of execution had given place to
this polite method, and every condemned man could emulate the Death
of Socrates, assemble his friends if he chose, visit some lovely
place, or retire to his bureau.  In vain the veteran Rin Kay
protested in the committee that, just as he had argued long ago
that men were not good enough to be Machiavellian, so now he
declared they were not good enough to be given powers of life or
death, incarceration or relief over their fellows.  "You murder
yourselves when you kill," he said.

The rebels, however, were killing with considerable vigour and
persistence, and their victims had no such calm and grace in their
last moments.  They were stabbed, shot, waylaid and beaten to

"For a terror," wrote Kramer, "death must be terrible."

"For murder," said Antoine Ayala, "death must be inevitable."

In the end the penal code did seem to achieve its end.  There were
5703 political murders in 2005, and 1114 in 2007.  The last
recorded occurred in 2034.  The total is over 120,000.  But during
these twenty-nine years there were 47,066 political executions!
Rihani estimates that more than seven per cent of these were
carried out upon anonymous, circumstantial, or otherwise
unsatisfactory evidence.  Most were practically sentences by courts
martial.  The millennium arrived in anything but millennial

4.  The Schooling of Mankind

And now again the shorthand notes are troubled, disturbed and
almost unreadable, and the resistances of Raven rise up and mingle
with the proper text.

It was the age-long issue between faith in compulsion and faith in
the goodwill of the natural man that had invaded the record.  It
affects me as I transcribe now; I do not see how it can fail to
affect any contemporary writer or reader.  I get again that
flavour, that slight but perceptible flavour of--what can I call it
but INHUMANITY?--in the historian's contribution.  These men whom
we anticipate here are different in their fundamental ideas.  This
short transition of a hundred and seventy years is marked by a
subtle change in the human heart.  I wonder if the same kind of
difference might not arise if we could bring a good contemporary
mind of the early eighteenth century into untempered contact with
our thoughts to-day.  Would not such a mind find us nowadays rather
hard and sceptical about things respected, rather harshly frank
about things biological, rather misshapen in our sentimentalities?

It is an old joke to revive such literary characters as Dr. Johnson
or Addison and make them discuss contemporary things, but generally
the fun goes no further than clothing modern reactions in old-
fashioned phrases and costume.  But in the light of my own response
to the harshly lucid, cold, and faintly contemptuous criticism of
our present resistances by the writer or writers of this 2106
document I find myself reviewing these old juxtapositions.  I see
that if we could indeed revive Johnson he would not only strike us
as an ill-mannered, offensive, inadaptable and tiresome old
gentleman who smelt unpleasantly and behaved worse, whose comments
on life and events would be wide of the mark and discoloured with
the echoes of antiquated controversies, but we should find that his
contact with us would be pervaded by an incurable distress at
our pace, at our strangely different values, our inhuman
humanitarianism, as it would have seemed to him, and our cruel
rationality.  He who had sat so sturdily against his background of
accepted and acceptable institutions, customs, and interpretations
would find that background vanished and himself like a poor martyr
in the arena with eyes upon him from every direction.  Of course he
would be hustled off to meet Mr. G. K. Chesterton, and that might
prove the most painful of all his encounters.  For Mr. Chesterton,
who is posed so often as an avatar of the old doctor belongs to his
own time quite as much as the most futuristic of us all.

I am a hostile critic of present conditions and a revolutionary in
essence; nevertheless, I can get on with the people about me
because, even though my song is a song of revolt, it is in the same
key and tempo as theirs; but I perceive that if I were transferred
to this infinitely happier and more spacious world the history of
Raven's reveals I should be continually and irreparably, in small
things and great things alike, discordant.  I should find nobody to
get the point of my intelligent observations; I should laugh
incomprehensively, fail to see the jokes that pleased these larger,
more vigorous people, and the business of life would hurry past me.
All sorts of things I had hoped for and forecast might be there--
but in some essential way different and alien to me.

It is one of the things that Raven's notes have taught me that a
human mind, an adult human mind anyhow, is much less easily
transplanted to a new time and climate than I had been wont to
assume.  To me, the story of Arden Essenden's bold leadership, his
acute self-consciousness, and his uncontrolled love for Elizabeth
Horthy seem matter for such another story, let us say, as
Meredith's Tragic Comedians; but the historian of the year 2106
finds him and her only material from which to dissect out the
treacherous egotism of passion.  Something in me rebels against
that, just as it rebels against the assumption that the World War
was a process of sheer waste, its heroisms and sacrifices blind
blundering, and its significance out of all proportion less than
the social and economic dislocations that caused it.

And now that I come to these disconnected records of the harshly
rational schooling of human motives under the Air Dictatorship,
records that even Raven found no zest in copying, my distaste is as
ineradicable as it is unreasonable.  I feel that, but for "the
accidents of space and time", I should have been one of the
actively protesting spirits who squirmed in the pitilessly
benevolent grip of the Air Dictatorship.  But whether it suits my
temperament or not, this story, as it came through Raven to me, has
to be told.

The men who made the great revolution and unified the world between
1965 and 1978 were men of practically the same mental assumptions
as our own.  They were in direct mental and moral continuity with
our contemporaries.  While the reader turns the page, if there is
any truth in this history, De Windt, still absolutely unknown, must
be working either in Berlin or London upon that Theory of the
Nucleated Modern State which was the decisive plan of that final
consolidation, publishers must already have read and rejected the
preliminary scheme of his great work, and in a year or so from now
some Mrs. Essenden will be choosing the name of Arden for her boy.
It is as close to us as that.  The men of the first World Council,
therefore, saw both sides of the business and wavered in feeling
between our tradition and the new order they were creating.  But
the subsequent generation which constituted the Air Dictatorship
had been shaped from the beginning in the aggressive bright new
schools of the Modern State nuclei, they had fed on a new
literature, they looked out upon fresh horizons, and their ideology
had been determined more than anything else by the social
psychologists and "new lawyers" of the American school.  They were
starkly constructive.  Nuance to them was obscurity and compromise

It is plain that so far as the future was concerned the first World
Council with its rivalries and politics was far less effective than
the unobtrusive Educational Control which worked under it during
its régime and gradually drew together police, hygiene, schooling,
and literature into one powerful nexus of direction.  While the
World Council was fighting for and directing and carrying on the
unified World-State, the Educational Control was remoulding
mankind.  With the opening years of the twenty-first century (C.E.)
the erstwhile leading figures of the revolution fall back into
secondary places or vanish from the limelight altogether, and a
simpler-minded, more determined group of rules comes to the front.

[I resume my transcription here.]

"The world is various enough without artificial variety," was a
leading maxim of the Educational Control which created the men of
the Air Dictatorship; and a variant of this maxim was:  "It does
not increase the interest of the human assembly to suffer avoidable
mental cripples and defectives."  So this body of teachers set
themselves to guard new lives, beginning even with prenatal
circumstances, from what they esteemed to be physical and mental
distortion.  There was no shadow of doubt upon this score for the
Educational Control.  Every possible human being had to be brought
into the new communion.  Everyone was to be exposed to the
contagion of modernity.  Every year now increased the power of the
Modern State Fellowship; by 2000 it numbered five million; by 2010
thirteen.  Every increase enabled the Educational Control to thrust
its enquiring and compelling fingers more and more intimately into
the recesses of human life.  It had more men and women made to its
pattern and a greater force of teachers and inspectors it could

There can be no denying the excellence of the immediate physical
results.  Historical Scenes in a Hundred Volumes witnesses from
1990 onward, not only to the resumption of the advance in the
technique of picture-making and the abundance of pictures, but to
the restoration of physical welfare.  As the student turns over the
pages he sees man straighten himself again, grow physically, become
more alert.  The slouching foot-dragging men and women, the aimless
faces, the fattish and lumpish figures of improperly nourished
people, the wretched clothing and ignoble makeshift gear of the
Second Decline and Fall, disappear; after 1990 clothing is fresh
and simple, and after 2010 it begins to be austerely beautiful.

And this being achieved very largely through what the liberal
thought of the nineteenth century would certainly have called
"persecution".  It is plain that the earlier World Council was all
too disposed to leave great areas of the planet that did not "give
trouble" alone.  The new World Council, which is known also as the
Air Dictatorship, would have none of that.  There began a
systematic attack upon the "lapsed regions", as they were called
from the year 2006 onward.  The government set itself in that year
to "tidy up" the still half-barbaric peasant populations of Hayti,
Ireland, West and Central Africa, South Italy, American Georgia and
its associated states, Georgia in the Caucasus, Eastern Bengal,
regions where traditional superstitions, secret societies, magic
cults or sacrificial practices showed an obstinate persistence.
There was a definite hunt for medicine men, sorcerers, priests,
religious teachers, and organizers of sedition; they would be fined
or exiled, and parents and others would be fined for "impeding" the
education of their children at the cosmopolitan schools.

Many critics of the Air Dictatorship are of opinion that this was a
needless pursuit of dying customs and beliefs that might well have
been left to fade out into mere fantasies and affectations.  But
the new generation of rulers took life too seriously for that.  It
is an issue that can never be settled, since we can only know what
actually occurred.

The old Catholic Church, it seems, was still in existence in these
days, the last surviving Christian organization, but it was greatly
impoverished, and it had suffered severely from schisms, evidently
the result of imperfect communications throughout the dark decades.
There was a Pope in Dublin and another in Rome and a coloured Pope
in Pernambuco.  From the legal point of view the Irish Pope was the
most legitimate successor of St. Peter.  He had been duly elected
by the Conclave, but the Fascist organization objected that he was
not of Italian origin, his original surname being O'Dowd and his
Italian accent imperfect, and the cardinals were intimidated into a
new election.  Some feud between rival gang organizations in
America seems to have been involved in this split, but the details
are obscure and need not occupy the student's time here.  There was
in consequence a division of the American Catholic world between
the Dublin and the Roman communion, and this led to a murderous
series of feuds, riots, and small local wars.  "Down with the Wop
Pope!" said the Irish.  One is reminded of that earlier splitting
of the Church through the rivalry of the French monarchy and the
Central European imperial system that set up a rival Pope in

Ireland was the last stronghold of Christianity.  The Catholic
religion had been compulsory in South Ireland from 1944 until 1980,
and the Erse language, although that was largely corrupted by
unavoidable English words and locutions, had also been made
obligatory.  Overt Birth Control knowledge had been successfully
banned, though this produced no effect in the decline in
population, and the Modern State nuclei had been boycotted more
effectually there than in any other part of the world.  The
Dictatorship found itself fighting one of its most difficult
battles for power with this tenacious people.  The Irish came out
in revolt all over the world.  In Ireland after the maculated fever
the population never rose above two millions, but there was a
widespread Irish tradition throughout the English-speaking world.
Some of the more brilliant and formidable antagonists of this
schooling and drilling of our race that was going on, Paidrick
Lynd, Arthur Fitzgerald, and Bernard O'Dwyer for example, came from
Ireland.  Oddly enough none of these three was a Catholic, and
Fitzgerald at any rate had suffered a term of imprisonment for
blasphemy, but the spirit of opposition was either innate in them
or it had become ingrained in their natures.

Let the student note the open alternative at the end of the
preceding paragraph.  It raises a question that remains unsettled
to this day.  It is the clue to our contemporary moral problem.
The Air Dictatorship, with what was still a very under-developed
science of social psychology at its disposal, had come upon one of
the obscurest and most debatable of educational problems, the
variability of mental resistance to direction and the limits set by
nature to the ideal of an acquiescent co-operative world.  De
Windt, preoccupied by his gigantic schemes for world organization,
had treated the "spirit of opposition" as purely evil, as a vice to
be guarded against, as a trouble in the machinery that was to be
minimized as completely as possible.  The Air Dictatorship was
carrying out and did carry out its world settlements on those
assumptions.  One may well believe that the world could have been
unified into one enduring Pax Mundi in no other way.  And yet they
were faulty assumptions, and in the end they had to be abandoned
for subtler and better conceptions of social interaction.

As every practising teacher understands, resistance is a necessary
factor in teaching.  Soft non-resistant material takes an imprint
very readily only to lose it again very quickly.  Easy pupils make
teaching slipshod.  The difficulty but also the soundness of
teaching increases with the amount of reaction in the learner.  And
also resistance involves a certain element of collaboration; the
thing learnt becomes a resultant, incorporating elements introduced
in the struggle.  It is easier to carve cheese than a good piece of
wood; every piece of wood has a bias, it has to be dealt with on
its own terms, it has to be managed and humoured, but in the end
there is no comparison in quality and interest between carved
cheese and wood-carving.  These are the commonplaces of our
educationists.  But the defence of the work of the Educational
Control is that its repressive measures were aimed not at intrinsic
but at artificial resistances left over from the pre-revolutionary

In the old world of the early twentieth century there was a vast
amount of crude generalization about what were called "racial"
characteristics.  There were generalizations about arbitrarily
chosen agglomerations of mixed population--the Spanish for example,
or "the West", "Russia", or the Jews; such generalizations were
always unjust and inaccurate and often extremely mischievous.
Nowadays we do not write of races any more, but we recognize groups
of characteristics, evidently transmitted en bloc as a rule by
associated genes, and anthropologists are steadily developing a
scientific classification of human types.  In few aspects do human
beings vary more widely than in their recalcitrance.  It is not a
simple case that some people are more resistant and some less.
There is a wide variation in the life cycle in this respect.
Recalcitrance varies with age and sex.  It varies with diet.  Some
types are obdurate as children but afterwards become more
reasonable.  Some reach a maximum of insubordination in
adolescence.  Generally speaking, passive resistance,
unteachableness and obstinacy, but not insurrectionary energy,
increase rapidly with age.  And in certain populations, of which
the Irish was one, there was a powerful access of resistance after
adolescence in the male.  It rose to the level of absolute

Now the apologists for the "persecutions" of the Air Dictatorship
maintain that its missionary teachers were already quite prepared
with the sympathy and finesse needed to teach every type of human
being they would encounter in the world.  So long as resistance was
personal between teacher and learner they welcomed it.  At least
they said they welcomed it.  But when it came to the systematic
organization of young people who would otherwise have had
indifferent minds, so as to present a mass resistance and
subversive opposition to the world order, the Educational Control,
it is argued, was justified in hindering and suppressing books,
meetings, teachings, agitations.  It had the whip hand, and it
would have been a sin not to have made use of that advantage.  "We
do not suppress individuality; we do not destroy freedom; we
destroy obsessions and remove temptations.  The world is still full
of misleading doctrines, dangerous imitations and treacherous
suggestions, and it is the duty of government to erase these"; so
ran the uncompromising memorandum issued by the Educational Council
in 2017.

"We have to get a common vision of existence, a common idea of
right and wrong, established throughout the whole population of the
world, and SPEEDILY," this memorandum declares.  "Natural instinct
is no help in a labyrinth of artificialities.  It has to be
supplemented by either training or discipline.  The better we
train, the less need for oppression; the more thoroughly we crush
out false presentations and agitations, the more freely, as well as
safely, men can live.  Things are rushing back headlong to
prosperity, and we cannot face abundance and leisure with the
present morale of the race.  It has to be stiffened up; it has to
be drilled to keep ranks."

In 1955 humanity was suffering throughout the globe from disorder,
famine and pestilence; its numbers were declining, and it might
well have been supposed that it was driving towards extinction.
The change of fortune was swift beyond precedent.  As early as 2017
we have this clear intimation that its guides and rulers were
contemplating the advance of plenty and an excess of leisure with


I think that it may make things clearer for the reader here if I
give a compact summary of the political forms assumed by the
developing world government between 1965 and 2106.  The writer of
this history of Raven's, writing for his contemporaries, assumed
them to be familiar with many institutions for which the readers of
this book will be altogether unprepared.  Fortunately the relations
of the Communist and Fascist Parties to their respective
governments give us a helpful parallel to the relations to the
World Council, the actual world government after 1965, of what was
called the Modern State Movement.  It was its incentive and its

The political structure of the world developed in this fashion:

After the chaos of the war (1940-50) and the subsequent pestilence
and "social fragmentation" (1950-60) there arose, among other
attempts to again reconstitute a larger society, a combine of the
surviving aviators and the men employed upon the ground plant of
their trade and transport.  This combine was called The Transport
Union.  It does not appear to have realized its full potentialities
in the beginning, in spite of the forecasts of De Windt.

It initiated various conferences of technicians and at last one in
1965, when it was reorganized as The Air and Sea Control and
produced as subsidiary organs The Supply Control, The Transport
(and Trading) Control, an Educational and Advertisement Control and
other Controls which varied from time to time.

It was this Air and Sea Control which ultimately gave rise in 1978
at the Second Conference of Basra to the World Council.  This was
the first declared and formal supreme government of the world.  The
Air and Sea Control then disappeared, but its subordinate Controls
remained, and coalesced and multiplied as ministries do in existing
governments, under the supreme direction of the World Council.

There was no further change in essential political structure
between 1978 and 2059, but there was a great change in the spirit
and method of that supreme government, the World Council.  A new
type of administrator grew up, harder, more devoted and more
resolute than the extremely various men of the two Basra
Conferences.  These younger men constituted what our historian
calls here the Second Council, though it was continuous with the
first.  There was a struggle for power involving the deaths of
several of the earlier councillors, but no formal change of régime;
there continued to be a World Council constituting the supreme
government of the world.  This Second Council is also referred to
as the Air Dictatorship in its earlier years, and later on as the
Puritan Tyranny.  These are not exact constitutional terms but
loose descriptive phrases.  The membership of the World Council
changed by individuals coming and going, but its character remained
singularly uniform for over forty years.  It grew more elderly in
spite of a few youthful accessions.  In 2045 its average age was

This Second World Council endured until a Conference at Mégève in
Savoy (2059) reconstituted the world government on lines which are
drawn out fairly plainly in the following chapters.

And now for the relations of this series of governing bodies to the
World-State Movement.

The ideological developments that inspired these changes were
initiated by a group of writers of whom De Windt was the
outstanding figure.  He built up the project for a world-state in
all its essentials in a book on Social Nucleation published in
1942.  The intrinsic quality of this book has been entirely
overshadowed by its importance as a datum point in history.  It is
a slow laborious book.

It was the seed of the Modern State Movement which furnished the
plans of the Air and Sea Control.  The Modern State Movement was
never a formally constituted government nor anything in the nature
of a public administration; it was the propaganda and development
of a system of ideas, and this system of ideas produced its own
forms of government.  The "Movement" was initially a propaganda and
research, and then a propaganda, research, and educational
organization.  Its active full members were called Fellows; it had
a class of dormant members, whose relationship to the active
category varied under different conditions and at different
periods; and it had a class of neophytes or apprentices, as
numerous or more numerous than its active Fellows.  It ultimately
incorporated the mass of adult mankind (and womankind) in its

It was never divided up into regional bodies.  Its Fellows were
acceptable at any local centre they happened to visit.  Naturally
it began mainly as localized nuclei, but those localizations were
merely for convenience of propaganda, teaching, and local purposes.
The effective subdivision of the Fellowship was into FACULTIES, and
these again were subdivided into sections and departments.  There
was to begin with a faculty of scientific research, a faculty of
interpretation and education, a health faculty, a faculty of social
order, a supply and trading faculty, a number of productive
faculties, agricultural, mineral and so on.  There were splits and
coalescences among these faculties.  Their splits and coalescences
had a frequent relationship to the splits and coalescences of the
Controls, because it was obviously a mental convenience for a
faculty or faculties to correspond with one or more Controls.

The faculties and their subdivisions, their sections and
departments, possessed electoral central councils, but there never
seems to have been a general directorate of the Modern State
Movement after the early days in which it was one simple system of
propaganda and enquiry nuclei; its nuclei almost from the outset
differentiated naturally into faculties, each viewing human affairs
from its own angle; the movement as a whole did not require a
continuing directive council; there were only conferences when
concerted action between diverse faculties was desirable.

There never seems to have been any difficulty in the way of a man
or woman belonging to two or more faculties at the same time, and
this greatly facilitated the melting of one faculty into another.
The Modern State Movement was an "open order" attack on social
structures; it was a solvent and not a mould.  The moulds were the

The faculties and their sections, departments, and so forth
developed very unequally; some dwindled to insignificance, and some
on the other hand grew to unanticipated proportions and created
their own distinctive organization and machinery.  This was
particularly the case with the social psychology department of the
faculty of science, which annexed the whole faculty of training and
advertisement by a sheer community of subject.  This social
psychology department of the faculty of science was given the legal
and responsible direction of the Educational Control.

This body of social psychologists and their associates became a
great critical and disciplinary organism side by side with the
World Council, which ultimately, as will be explained in the
following chapters, it superseded.

The world then ceased, it seems, to have any single permanent
government at all.  It remained under a series of primary Controls
dealing with each other by the method of conference, namely the
Controls of transport, natural products, staple manufactures,
population (housing and increase), social sanitation (police and
medicine), education (these two latter were later merged as the
Behaviour Control), and the ever expanding activities of scientific
research and creative work.  So the world which had once been
divided among territorial Great Powers became divided among
functional Great Powers.

Later a Bureau of Reconciliation and Cooperation seems to have
grown up, which decided upon the necessity and method of inter-
Control conferences.  It was something rather in the nature of a
Supreme Court than of a ruling council.

Most of the old faculties of the Modern State Movement dissolved
into technical organizations under these Controls, with the one
exception of that former department of the science faculty the
department of social psychology, which by 2106 had become, so to
speak, the whole literature, philosophy, and general thought of the
world.  It was the surviving vital faculty of the Modern State
Movement, the reasoning soul in the body of the race.

In the end it becomes something like what the early nineteenth
century used to think existed under the name of Public Opinion, the
consensus of active thought and imagination throughout the world.
It is plain that by 2106 this rule by a pervasive intelligence had
become an unchallenged success.  It was all that was left by way of
King, President, or Supreme government on earth.

This assembling and clearing-up of statements which are otherwise
scattered rather perplexingly through the text under consideration
will not, I hope, annoy such readers as have already grasped what I
have summarized here.  I will now return to that text itself.

5.  The Text Resumes: The Tyranny of the Second Council

The Air Dictatorship is also called by some historians the Puritan
Tyranny.  We may perhaps give a section to it from this point of

"Puritan" is a misused word.  Originally invented to convey a
merely doctrinal meticulousness among those Protestants who
"protested" against the Roman version of Catholicism, it came to be
associated with a severely self-disciplined and disciplinary life,
a life in which the fear of indolence and moral laxity was the
dominant force.  At its best it embodied an honourable realization:
"I shall do nothing worth while and nothing worth while will be
done unless I pull myself together and stiffen up my conduct."  If
the new Air Dictatorship was schooling the world with considerable
austerity, it was certainly schooling itself much more so.

The code of the first makers of the World-State had been a simple
one.  "Tell the truth," they insisted; "maintain the highest
technical standards, control money and do not keep it, give your
powers ungrudgingly to the service of the World-State."  That
seemed to leave them free for a good deal of refreshing self-
indulgence, and it did.  They ate, drank, and were merry, made love
very freely, envied and competed with one another for power and
distinction, and set no adequate guard upon the growth of rivalries
and resentments.  Our history has glanced at the fall and death of
Essenden, but this is only one episode in the long and complicated
history of the private lives of the first world committee.  Slowly
the details are being elucidated and analysed by a body of
historical students.  Except that the victims are dead, and cannot
hear, the results are as pitiless as the old Christian fancy of the
Recording Angel and his Book on Resurrection Day.

They appear as very pitifully human; their sins happened to them,
they were taken unawares in phases of fatigue, by resentment, by
sensuality or flattery.  Women were attracted by their prestige and
offered the reassurance of love to their weaker moments.  In many
cases the moral downfall was due to the very limitlessness of the
devotion with which they first gave themselves to their world task.
They worked without rest.  Then they would suddenly find themselves
worn bare, bankrupt of moral energy.  They had made no proper
balance between the public task and the inward desire.  Outbreaks
of evil temper would follow, or phases of indolence or gross
indulgence.  The Fellowship was disconcerted; the outer world ran
with scandal.  "These Fellows," said their critics, "are no better
than the pretenders and rascals of the old régime.  Rin Kay, the
wise, is consumed with affection for his little friend, and
Ardasher of the experimental aeroplanes makes his young men do
dangerous stunts to please a girl.  Morovitz is collecting Persian
miniatures quite unscrupulously and Fedor Galland spends half his
time now making a garden at Babylon."

The ambitious young men who were little boys when the first
conference at Basra was held were educated by teachers who were
none the less harshly zealous because they were doing relatively
inconspicuous work and had no little friends nor miniatures nor
gardens to amuse them.  These teachers had a lively sense of their
leaders' defects and of their own modest but real moral
superiority.  The youngsters under their teaching were saturated
with constructive enthusiasm, but they were trained also to judge
and condemn the weaknesses of their spent and tired predecessors.
They learnt that the brightness of this new world that had been
made for them was in danger from the very men who had made it.  The
technically more skilful and intensive teaching that had been given
them had made them more self-conscious and wary in their behaviour,
and far more capable of managing the detail of their lives.  They
were simple in principle and hard in detail.  They had a modern
wisdom about diet and indulgence; they regarded lack of fitness as
a crime.

The difference is evident in Historical Pictures, where one
usually sees the older generation dressed either carelessly or
picturesquely and often either self-consciously or gracelessly
posed, while the younger men and women in the simpler and plainer
clothing that was coming into fashion carry themselves like
athletes.  Austerity has become a second nature to them.  Devotion
and the sacrifice of the individual they carried to such a pitch
that, for instance, it was considered unseemly for them to have
portraits made, and there was no record kept of the names of the
chairmen and of the movers of motions in the central committee
during their ascendency.  It has needed special research to rescue
some of the names of this second generation of world rulers, who
set up the Puritan Tyranny and made the Socialist World-State
secure.  One of the moving spirits was certainly Han H'su and
another Antoine Ayala.

They ousted their predecessors without any coup d'état, one by one,
through sheer superiority in energy and working power.  The great
revolution was over; the World-State was in being.  But it was not
secure.  It was a time for just such continuous detailed work as
only a naturally able and energetic type with a hard training could
hope to do.  They were not selected by any voting or politics to
fill the Council, they were selected by their own staying and
driving power.  The milder or subtler types could not keep the pace
and fell into less authoritative positions.  The influence of
certain teachers and groups of teachers was very considerable.
Three schools, the Unamuno Foundation at Coimbra, the Columbia
University of New York, and the Tokio Social College, accounted for
more than a third of the World Council in 2017.

For nearly forty years the new Council, with occasional renewals,
worked and kept a whole generation of men and women working.  As
Aldous Huxley (1894-2004), one of the most brilliant of reactionary
writers, foretold of them, they "tidied up" the world.

There can be no denying the purification and rarefaction of the
human scene that was achieved during their sway.  They tightened up
the disciplines of the Modern State Fellowship, and nevertheless
the proportion of the Fellowship increased until it bade fair to
become the larger moiety of adult mankind.  The mental habits of
the Fellowship, its habitual bearing, extended through the whole
population.  The Tyranny, says Vordin, altered the human face for
ever.  It closed the mouth and made the lips firmer, made the eyes
steadier and more candid, opened the brow, altered the poise of the
head, obliterated a number of wrinkles and habits of expression.
Portraits of the earlier and later time confirm this generalization.
One type of odd-character after another became rare and began to
disappear from the human comedy.  Rascals and recalcitrants
grew old, sat in the sun for a time rather protestingly and
vanished.  They took many disagreeable and some whimsical casts
of countenance with them.  Sexual prostitution ceased and eliminated
a characteristic defiance from feminine carriage.  The trader found
he had nothing to trade with and came into the employment of the
Supply Control.  Gambling, horse-racing, sport, generally went out
of fashion, and those queer oblongs of pasteboard, "playing cards",
retired to museums, never to emerge again.  Every one of these
vanishing interests or practices took its own scores of social
types, of "reaction systems", to use the modern phrase, away with
it.  Faces ceased to be masks.

Every year the world grew safer for the candid.  The need for
cunning and wary self-restraint diminished enormously, the habit of
making a face a "mask".  Humanity was extroverted.  A lively self-
forgetful interest in external things becomes more and more patent.
The "worried" look of the introspective habit of mind disappears.
"Everyone must know plainly," said the new rulers.  "Men must be
perplexed no more."  The old religions could not emulate the moral
prestige of the new cult, and even the resentments of the
persecution that deprived them of their last shreds of educational
influence could not preserve them.  For nearly forty years this
rule of the new saints, this resolute simplification and smoothing
out of life, went on.

History becomes a record of increasingly vast engineering
undertakings, and cultivations, of the pursuit of minerals and of
the first deep borings into the planet.  New mechanisms appeared,
multiplied, and were swept away by better mechanisms.  The face of
the earth changed.  The scientific redistribution of population
began.  Yet there was little likeness to the world of to-day, as we
know it.  No age in human history has left us such strange and
uncongenial pictures.

Costume was not unpleasant during this period, because of its
simplicity; the human figures in the scene at least are tolerable;
but these scientific Puritans also produced some of the clumsiest
architecture, the most gaunt and ungainly housing blocks, the
dullest forests, endless vistas of straight stems, and the vastest,
most hideous dams and power-stations, pylon-lines, pipe-lines, and
so forth that the planet has ever borne.  But at any rate they
flooded the Sahara and made the North African littoral the
loveliest land in the world.  The productivity of mankind was now
advancing by leaps and bounds, in spite of the severe restraint
presently put upon the introduction of fresh labour-saving devices;
and yet these Puritans were consumed by an overwhelming fear of
leisure both for themselves and others.  They found it morally
necessary to keep going and to keep everybody else going.  They
INVENTED work for the Fellowship and all the world.  Earth became
an ant-hill under their dominion clean and orderly but needlessly
"busy".  So harshly had they reacted against the weaknesses of
their seniors and so unable were they to mitigate their own self-
imposed severities.

Let us cast up the good mankind can attribute to this strange phase
of sternness and grim repression.  For all the faint masochist and
sadistic flavour of its closing years, the good was beyond all
measure greater than the evil.  "The obliteration of out-of-date
moral values" (the phrase is Antoine Ayala's) "and the complete
establishment of a code of rigorous and critical self-control, of
habitual service, creative activity, cooperation, of public as well
as private good manners, and invariable truthfulness, were achieved
for all time.  We grow up so easily now into one free, abundant,
and happy world that we do not realize the effort still needed even
in the year 2000 to keep life going upon what seem now to us the
most natural and simple lines possible.  We find it almost
impossible to imagine the temptations to slacken at work, loiter,
do nothing, 'look for trouble', seek 'amusement', feel bored and
take to trivial or mischievous 'time-killing' occupations, that
pursued the ill-trained under-vitalized, objectless common citizen
before 2000 C.E.  Still more difficult is it to realize how subtly
these temptations were diffused through the mass and how hard they
made a well-directed life.  We have to trust the psychological
experts about that."

The New Puritans "disinfected" the old literature, for example.  It
is hard to see that now as an urgent necessity.  These old stories,
plays, and poems seem to us to convey the quaintest and most
inexplicable systems of motivation conceivable, and we cannot
imagine people being deflected by them; they might as easily be led
astray by the figures on a Chinese screen or an Hellenic
sarcophagus; but before the persecution those books were, as one
censor called them, "fever rags".  They stood then for "real life".
They provided patterns for behaviour and general conduct.  That
queer clowning with insults and repartees, that insincerely
sympathetic mocking of inferiors, that denigration of superiors,
which constituted "humour" in the old days, strikes us as either
fatuous or malicious.  We cannot understand, for instance, the joy
our ancestors found in the little blunders and misconceptions of
ill-educated people.  But then they also laughed at the cripples
who still abounded in the world!  Equally distasteful now is most
of their "romance" with its false stresses, its unnecessary
sacrifices and desperations.  "Romance", says Paul Hennessey, "is
essentially the violent and miserable reaction of weak spirits to
prohibitions they cannot fairly overcome."

We find the books glorifying war and massacre, and the tangled
masses of suggestion that elaborated the innate hostility and
excitement caused by difference of racial type, so unconvincing
that it is difficult to believe that they ever gripped.  But they
did grip and compel.  They drove innumerable men to murders,
lynchings, deliberate torture.  They dressed the foulest and
cruellest of crimes in heroic colours.  There had to be a break
with these traditions before they could be seen as we see them now.
It needed the heroic "priggishness" of the Air Dictatorship,
putting away the old literature and drama for a time, suppressing
the suggestion systems of the old religions and superstitions,
jailing and segregating men and women for "hate incitement",
ruthlessly eliminating sexual incitation from the lives of the
immature and insisting upon a universal frank sexual hygiene, to
cleanse the human mind for good and all and inaugurate the
unconstrained civilization of to-day.  There was no other way to

Joseph Koreniovsky has called the Puritan Tyranny "the cold bath
that braced up mankind after the awakening".  Man, he says, was
still "frowsty-minded" and "half asleep" in the early twenty-first
century, still in urgent danger of a relapse into the confused
nightmare living of the Age of Frustration.  You may call it a
tyranny, but it was in fact a release; it did not suppress men, but
obsessions.  None of us now can fully realize the value of that
"disentanglement from tradition", because now we are all

And next to this ruthless "mental disinfection" of the world, and
indeed inseparable from it, we must put the physical disinfection
of mankind to the credit of the Air Dictatorship.  Between 2000 and
2040 every domicile in the world was either destroyed and replaced,
or reconditioned and exhaustively disinfected.  There was an
immense loss of "picturesqueness" in that process, and we shiver
nowadays when we look at pictures of the white bare streets, the
mobile rural living-boxes, the bleakly "cheerful" public buildings,
the plain cold interiors with their metallic furniture, which
everywhere replaced the huts, hovels, creeper-clad cottages and
houses, old decaying stone and brick town halls, market houses,
churches, mosques, factories and railway stations in which our
tough if ill-proportioned and undersized forefathers assembled
about their various archaic businesses.

But between the same years the following diseases, the names of
which abound in the old histories, and the nature of which we can
hardly imagine, vanish from the human records: catarrh, influenza,
whooping cough, sleeping sickness, cholera, typhus, typhoid,
bubonic plague, measles, and a score of other infectious scourges.
(Only yellow fever remained as a serious infection after 2050.
That demanded the special effort of 2079 for its extirpation.)
Syphilis and indeed all those diseases known as venereal, were
stamped out completely in two generations; they were afflictions so
horrible and disgusting that their description is not now
considered suitable for the general reader.  There was a similar
world-wide attack on plant diseases and distortions, but of that
the student will learn in his Botanical History.

The psychologists who are rewriting human history have still many
open questions to settle about the training and early influences
that gave the world this peculiar group of rulers, and so the
account of its hardening and deterioration remains incomplete.
They admit that the Tyranny was in essence a liberation, but they
insist that it left vitally important desires in the human make-up
unsatisfied.  Old traditions and mischievous obsessions were rooted
in these desires, and the Tyranny had not been content with an
eradication of the old traditions.  It had denied the desires.  It
had pulled up the soil with the weeds.  It had exalted incessant,
even if pointless, activity above everything else in life.

Overwork, a strained strenuousness, has been a common characteristic
of the rulers of mankind in the past.  It shows through the Edicts
of Asoka, for example, and particularly in Rock Edict VI (Asoka, D.
R. Bhandarkar, 1932, Classical Historical Studies, 21-118).  "I am
never satisfied," runs the Edict, "with the exertion or with
dispatch of business.  The welfare of the whole world is an esteemed
duty with me.  And the root of that, again, is this, namely,
exertion and dispatch of business."  A great majority of the
successful Cæsars and Autocrats from Shi-Hwang-Ti to Hitler have
the same strenuousness--Alexander the Great perhaps was the chief
exception, but then his father had done the work before him.
Mussolini, the realizer of Italian Fascismo, in his Talks to Ludwig
(Historical Documents Series 100, 319) betrays an equal disposition
for single-handed accomplishment and an equal disinclination to
relinquish responsibility.

All the chief figures of the Air Dictatorship betray, upon
scrutiny, signs of the same drive to do too much and still to do
more.  They display all the traits of a collective weary conqueror,
unable to desist and think and adapt himself.  They went on ruling
and fighting when their victory was won.  They had tidied up the
world for ever and still they went on tidying.  After their first
real successes they manifest an extreme reluctance to bring new
blood into the responsible administrative task.  They had arisen to
power as a group by their usefulness, because they were unavoidably
necessary to those original founders of the World-State whom they
first served and then by sheer insistence upon performance pushed
out of authority and replaced.  The three virtues in a ruler
according to Han H'su were punctuality, precision, and persistence.
But it was a dictum of Paidrick Lynd's that "indolence is the
mother of organization".  They had none of that blessed gift of
indolence.  When the legacy of work that the first world revolution
had left them was exhausted, they brought things at last to the
necessity for a final revolution through their sheer inability to
organize a direct succession to themselves or to invent fresh

That final revolution was the most subtle of all the substitutions
of power that have occurred in human affairs, the most subtle and
so far the last.  The Dictatorship could suppress overt resistance;
it could impose obedience to its myriads of injunctions and rules.
But it could not suppress the development of general psychology nor
the penetration of its own legislative and administrative
activities by enquiry and criticism.

The Department of General Psychology had grown rapidly until it had
become the most vigorous system of activities in the scientific
faculty of the Modern State Fellowship.  In its preparatory stages
it had taken the place of the various "Arts" and Law curricula of
the old régime.  It was the modernization of the "humanities".  The
founders of the World-State had given this particular department of
the scientific faculty almost as great a directive and modifying
power over both the Educational and Legal Controls as it exercises
to-day.  Even then it was formally recognized as the responsible
guardian in the theory of Modern State organization.  It more than
realized the intentions of De Windt.  It became the thought, as the
World Council had become the will, of mankind acting as a whole.
And since the education and legal adjustment of the World-State was
thus under the direction of a department of research continually
advancing, they differed diametrically in character from the
education and teaching of the old world order.

The student cannot keep this difference, this flat contrast, too
clearly in mind.  He will never understand the historical process
without it.  The Old Education existed to preserve traditions and
institutions.  Progressive forces arose as a dissent from it and
operated outside its machinery.  In the eighteenth, nineteenth, and
early twentieth century education was always a generation or so
behind living contemporary ideas and the schoolmaster was a drag on
mankind.  But the New Education, based on a swiftly expanding
science of relationship, was no longer the preservation of a
tradition, but instead the explanation of a creative effort in the
light of a constantly most penetrating criticism of contemporary
things.  The new schoolmaster showed the way, and the new education
kept steadily ahead of contemporary social fact.  The difference of
the New Law and the Old Law was strictly parallel.  If a man of the
year 1900 had been told of a progressive revolution led by lawyers
and schoolmasters inspired by scientific ideas, he would have taken
it as a rather preposterous joke, but to-day we ask, "How else can
the continuity of a progressive revolution be sustained?"

The failure of the German revolution of 1918 and the relapse of
that unfortunate country into the puerility and brutish follies of
Hitlerism was entirely due to the disregard of the elementary
principle that no revolution could be a real and assured revolution
until it has completely altered the educational system of the
community.  Every effective old-world revolution was a revolt
against an established education and against the established law.

The rôle of the modern Education Control in preserving, correcting,
and revivifying the progressive process in human affairs had
already been manifested by the supersession of the leading
personalities of the Basra conference in the World Council by their
successors who became the Air Dictatorship.  Now these men in their
turn found the instruments of government becoming recalcitrant in
their hands and obeying the impulse of unfamiliar ideas.  They had
cleared and cleansed the site while social science had been
preparing the idea of the new structures that were to stand upon
it, and now they found themselves confronted by an impulse towards
creation and enrichment entirely discordant with their habits of
administration.  Their subordinates began to send back the
instructions given them as "insufficient and not in accordance with
the psychology of the workers"--or other people--"concerned".
Schemes were condemned by those to whom they were entrusted as
unnecessarily toilsome or needlessly ungracious.  Workers took
matters into their own hands and demanded more pleasant processes
or more beautiful results.  The committee was disposed at first to
insist upon unquestioning obedience.  Thereupon the Education
Control produced a masterful argument to show "the social
harmfulness of unquestioning obedience".

There could be no greater contrast in the world than that between
the older revolutionary crises in human affairs and this later
conflict of wills.  The old revolutions were at best frantic,
bawling, sentimental affairs in which there was much barricading of
roads and destruction of property; people were shot abundantly and
carelessly and a new régime stumbled clumsily to responsibility on
the ruin and reversal of its predecessor.  Such revolutions were
insurrections of discontent against established institutions.  But
this last revolution was the cool and effectual indictment of the
world executive by a great world wide educational system.  It was
not an insurrection; it was a collateral intervention.  The new
order arose beside its predecessor, took matters out of its hands
and replaced it.

The need for an intolerant militant stage of the World-State had
passed.  The very reason for the disciplines of the Puritan Tyranny
had been dissolved away in the completeness of its victory.  But
the last men to realize this were the old men who now sat trying to
find tasks to keep humanity out of mischief in the bureau of the
World Council.

6.  Æsthetic Frustration: The Note Books of Ariston Theotocopulos

It is a growing custom of historians, and we have already followed
it freely, to vivify their general statements by quotations from
contemporary descriptive writers.  As histories have disentangled
themselves from their primitive obsession about rulers and their
policies, they have made a more and more extensive use of private
memoirs, diaries, novels, plays, letters, sketches, pictures and
the like.  Once upon a time washing bills and memorandum books were
below the "dignity of history".  Now we esteem them far above acts
of parliament or diplomatic memoranda.  And certainly there is no
more convenient source of information about current ideas and
feeling under the Air Dictatorship than the cipher Note Books of
that gifted painter and designer Ariston Theotocopulos (1997-2062).
For thirty-seven years until his death, he wrote in these books
almost daily, making his own shrewd comments on current events,
describing many odd and curious occurrences, noting very
particularly his own emotional reactions, and adorning them all
with a wealth of sketches, dreams, caricatures and the like, which
make the full edition in facsimile, with a translation, among the
greatest delights of the book-lover.  The bulk of this matter does
not concern the student of general history at all, and yet it is
possible to pick out from it material for a far clearer realization
of life under the second Council than could be derived from a score
of abstract descriptions.

The earlier of these volumes are coloured by the irritation of the
writer with three particular things: the restrictions upon private
flying, his difficulties in finding scope for his genius, and the
general want of beauty and graciousness in life.  At that time
there were no privately owned aeroplanes and no one could act as
an air pilot who was not an active Fellow of the Modern State
organization and subject to its rules and disciplines.  Theotocopulos
had an anarchistic soul, and his desire to wander freely above the
mountains and clouds, to go whither he liked at his own sweet will,
unhampered by any thought of immediate "service", became an
obsession with him.  "If they would let me alone I would give the
world something," he scribbles.  "But what on earth is the good of
those blighted old Master Decorators telling me to do this and
that?  Did I come into the world to imitate and repeat things done

And in another place he notes:  "Some damned official flying
overhead on his way to preventing something.  It spoilt the day for
me.  I couldn't THINK any more."

Then comes a cry of agony.  "The lay-out of all this terracing is
wrong.  What is the good of putting me to do a frieze of elephants
on a wall that ought to come down again?  If I do anything good
that wall will stay where it is.  The better I do it, the more
likely they are to keep that wall.  And it's wrong.  It's wrong.
It's wrong."

A few pages on, one word is all alone by itself:  "ELEPHANTS!"

Then follows a string of caricatures of that animal which Li has
characterized as acute biological criticism.  Theotocopulos had
been vividly interested in elephants, but now he had tired of them.
He represents them as diaphanous or altogether transparent, and
reveals the distresses of their internal lives.  And there is a
whole page of incredibly wicked elephants' eyes.

He was working on the rather deliberate decoration of the main-road
system then in course of construction, running from Cape Finisterre
through North Italy and along the North Black-Sea Dyke to the
Crimea and Caucasia.  That system has since been deflected from the
Ligurian coast northward, but at that time it was made to follow by
the sea to Genoa, and thence passed in a great cutting through the
mountains to the plain of the Po and so to the still existing
Chioggia viaduct.  It was one of a not very ably conceived system
of world roads that was greatly modified before its completion in
our own time, and it was carried out with a massiveness and a
solidity of ornamentation that witness to the World Council's
incapacity to realize that Change was still going on.  Those roads
seem to have been planned for all time.  They indicate mental

Theotocopulos was engaged upon the coast section between the old
town of Nice to the old port of Genoa.  It was driven in a series
of flattened curves that straightened out in places to a right
line, cutting brutally through headlands and leaping gulfs and bays
in vast viaducts.  Above and below the slopes were terraced with
natural or imitation marble walls and the terraces were planted
with oranges, lemons, vines, roses, olives and agaves.  These
terraces went up, as Theotocopulos says, "relentlessly" to the old
Corniche Road above, broken only by a few masses of evergreen
trees.  The ruins of the villas and gardens of the Capitalist era
and most of the towns along the coast that Titus Cobbett had
visited and described seventy-odd years before had now been cleared
away; a few groups of residential buildings occurred here and
there, and pretentious staircases, which were rarely used because
of the lifts they masked, led down to beaches and holiday places
and harbours for pleasure boats and fishermen.  These holiday
places and the residential buildings were low and solid-looking,
after the fashion of the time, and they provoked Theotocopulos to
frenzy.  He caricatured them and spotted his drawings with indecent
words.  It is amazing how truthfully he drew them and how
ingeniously he distorted them.  He represented them as cowering
into the earth like the late buildings of the war years, from which
they certainly derived their squatness.

"We still dream of air raids and war in the air," he said, and he
speaks elsewhere of "the inmates of those fortifications. . . .  If
only I could get hold of an aeroplane and a bomb!  Perhaps after
all there is some sense in keeping intelligent people like me out
of the air, with this sort of stuff about."

His task unhappily kept him in close contact with all this squat
architectural magnificence.  He had won distinction at an unusually
early age for his brilliant drawings of men and animals; he had a
grotesque facility for seeing into bodies and conveying his sense
of internal activities; before his time the only anatomy known to
artists had been muscular anatomy; and he was set to "decorate" an
ungainly stretch of wall near Alassio with a frieze of elephants.
It is necessary to explain that in those days there was the
completest divorce in people's minds between æsthetic and
mechanical considerations.  First you made a thing, they thought,
and then you decorated it.  It seems almost incredible now, but the
engineers of the Air Dictatorship were supposed and expected to
disregard all thought of beauty in what they did.  If they made
something frightful, then the artist was called in to sugar the
pill.  There, as in so many things, the restless sensitive mind of
Theotocopulos anticipated the ideas of to-day.  "Engineers ought to
be artists," he says, "anyhow; and artists ought to be engineers or
leave structural work alone."  This wall of his still exists; his
decoration has preserved it, even as he foresaw.  It just remains
for his sake, a lesson for students and a monument to his still
incomparable talent.

"Took a holiday," he notes one day, "and rowed about five miles out
to sea.  These disproportions grow worse as one gets away from
them.  Never before have I seen anything that got uglier as it
receded in perspective.  This coast does.  The road is too broad
and big.  There will never be that much traffic.  The population of
the world isn't increasing and on the whole it rushes about less
than it did.  One hundred and twelve metres of width!  What is this
coming torrent of traffic from Finisterre to God knows where?  Not
a sign of it as yet.  Nor ever will be.  The little lizards get
lost across that glassy surface and die and dry up.  Artless
earthworms crawl out upon it and perish.  One sees them by the
thousand after wet weather.  No shade for miles.  The terraces are
badly spaced and the walls that sustain them look gaunt.  There is
no sympathy in all this straight stuff with the line and movement
of the hills behind.  They LIVE.  And this accursed habit of
building houses close to the ground!  Damn it, don't we build to
get away from the ground?"

And then suddenly in big capitals comes one word:  "PROPORTION!"

After that he meditated with his pencil in hand, jotting down his
thoughts.  "The clue to life.  Not simply beauty.  There is no evil
but WANT OF PROPORTION.  Pain?  Pain arises out of a disproportion
between sensations.  Dishonesty?  Cruelty?  It is all want of
proportion between impulse and control. . . ."

It is interesting to trace in the notebooks how he tries over ideas
that are now familiar to everyone.  He worries between the ideas of
proportion and harmony.  Then he hits on the discovery that all
history is a record of fluctuations in proportion.  To-day, of
course, that is a commonplace.  We have told the economic and
political history of the twentieth century, for instance, almost
entirely as the story of an irregular growth of the elements of
life, hypertrophy of economic material going on concurrently with a
relative arrest of educational, legal, and political adjustment.
The first dim realizations of these disharmonies were manifested by
the appearance of "planning", those various crude attempts to make
estimates of quantities in social life of which the Russian Five
Year Plan was the first.  After 1930, the world was full of Plans,
and most of them were amazingly weak and headlong plans.

We learn from these notebooks of Theotocopulos how imperfectly this
idea of really deliberate quantitative preparation in the
activities of our species was apprehended even in the early twenty-
first century.  Just as the war complex ran away with men's minds
in the war period, so now political unity and uniformity and an
extravagant concentration of enterprise upon productive efficiency
had outrun reason.  The interest of these notebooks lies exactly in
the fact that they are not the writings of a scientific social
psychologist, but of a man who was, except for his peculiar genius
and energy of expression, a very ordinary personality.  They tell
us how common people were taking the peculiar drive of the times,
how the general mind was puzzling out its new set of perplexities
and asking why after having abolished war, restored order, secured
plenty, defeated the fears and realized the wildest hopes of the
martyr generations, it was still so far from tranquillity and

"Growing pains," he writes abruptly.  "That was old Lenin's phrase.
Is a certain want of proportion unavoidable?"

After that flash in the pan, the notebook wanders off into a
dissertation upon Levels of Love, of no importance for our present
purpose.  But that idea of "Growing Pains" was working under the
surface all the time.  Suddenly appear pages of sketches of strange
embryos, of babies and kittens and puppies, all cases of morbid
hypertrophy.  "Is want of proportion inevitable in all growth?
Nature seems to find it so, but she always has been a roundabout
fumbler.  She starts out to make a leg, and when it comes out a
wing she says, 'Eureka!  I MEANT to do that.'  But in DESIGNED
WORK?  In engineering for example?"

His mind goes off to the making of castings, the waste in grinding,
the problems that arise in assembling a machine.

"Nature corrects the disproportions of growth by varying the
endocrines," he reflects.  "And when a house has got its frames set
up and its walls built, we turn out the masons and put in the
plasterers and painters.  So now.  A change of régime in the
world's affairs is indicated.  New endocrinals.  Fresh artisans."

This particular entry in the notebook is dated April 7, 2027.  It
is one of the earliest appearances of what presently became a
current phrase, "change of régime".

The preoccupations of Theotocopulos with the physical and mental
aspects of love, his extraordinary knack of linking physiological
processes with the highest emotional developments, need not concern
us here, important as they are in the history of æsthetic analysis.
For a year or so he is concentrated upon his great "Desire Frieze"
in the Refectory of the Art Library at Barcelona, and he thinks no
more of politics.  He likes the architects with whom he is
associated; he approves of the developments at Barcelona, and he is
given a free hand.  "These fellows do as they like," he remarks.
"A great change from all those damned committees, 'sanctioning'
this or asking you to 'reconsider' that."  Then he comes under the
influence of that very original young woman from Argentina, also in
her way a great artist, Juanita Mackail.  Sketches of her,
memoranda of poses and gestures, introduce her.  Then he remarks:
"This creature thinks."  So far he has never named her.  Then she
appears as "J" and becomes more and more frequent.

"There is something that frightens me about a really intelligent
woman.  Was it Poe or De Quincey--it must have been De Quincey--who
dreamt of a woman with breasts that suddenly opened and became
eyes?  Horrid!  To find you are being looked at like that."

Following this a page has been torn out by him, the only page he
ever tore out, and we are left guessing about it.

An abrupt return to political speculation in the notebooks follows.
A number of entries begin, "J says", or end, "This is J's idea."

Then some pages later he repeats:  "This creature thinks.  Do I?
Only with my fingers.  Language is too abstract for me.  Or is it
true, as she says, that I am mentally lazy.  MENTALLY LAZY--after I
had been talking continuously to her for three hours!

"It seems all my bright little thoughts don't amount to anything
compared with the stuff these social psychologists are doing.  I
have a lot to learn.  I suppose J would schoolmistress anybody."

The notebooks keep the fragile grace and mental vigour of Juanita
Mackail alive to this day.  She was the sort of woman who would
have been a socialist revolutionary in the nineteenth century, a
commissar in Early Soviet Russia or a hard worker for the Modern
State in the middle twentieth century.  Now she was giving all the
time her strongly decorative idiosyncrasy left free to the peculiar
politics of the period.  It is plain that before she met
Theotocopulos she was already politically minded.  She had had a
feeling that the world was in some way not going right, but her
clear perception of what had to be done about it came only with her
liaison with him.  The notebooks with their frankness and brutality
tell not only a very exceptional love story, but what is perhaps
inseparable from every worthwhile love story, a mutual education.
Theotocopulos was her first and only lover.  To begin with he had
treated her as casually as he had treated the many other women in
his life, and then it is plain that, as he began to find her out,
his devotion to her became by degrees as great or greater than her
devotion to him.

He studied her.  He made endless notes about her.  We know exactly
how she affected him.  How he affected her we are left to guess,
but it is plain that for her there was at once the magnificence of
his gifts and the appeal of his wayward childishness.  The former
overwhelmed her own.  It is plain in her surviving work.  The
earlier work is the best.  He asks twice, "Am I swamping J?  Her
stuff is losing character.  She is borrowing my eyes.  That last
cartoon.  Am I to blame?  It WAS such lovely stuff.  Once upon a
time."  And he writes:  "This maternity specialization is Nature's
meanest trick on women.  If they are not going to be mothers, if
they CAN'T be mothers, why on earth should they be saturated with
motherhood?  Why should J think more about getting me a free hand
to do what I please than she does about her own work?  She does.  I
haven't asked her.  Or have I, in some unconscious way, asked her?
No, it's just her innate vicious mothering.  I am her beloved son
and lover and the round world is my brother, and every day her
proper work deteriorates and she gets more political and social-
psychological on our account."

From that point onward the trend of these notebooks towards
politics becomes very strong.  The early volumes express the
resentments of an isolated man of extreme creative power who finds
himself singlehanded and powerless in an unsympathetically ordered
world.  The late show that same individuality broadening to a
conception of the whole world as plastic material, sustained by a
sense of understanding and support, coming into relationship and
cooperation with an accumulating movement of kindred minds.  At
last it is not so much Theotocopulos who thinks as the awakening
æsthetic consciousness of the world community.

"The change of régime has to be like a chick breaking out of its
egg.  The shell has to be broken.  BUT THE SHELL HAD TO BE THERE.
Let us be just.  There is proportion in time as well as in space.
If the shell is broken too soon there is nothing to be done but
make a bad omelette.  But if it isn't broken at the proper time,
the chick dies and stinks."

The forty-seventh notebook is devoted almost entirely to a
replanning of the subject of his early animadversions, the Ligurian
coast.  That notebook proved to be so richly suggestive that to-day
some of his sketches seem to be actual drawings of present
conditions, the treatment of the Monaco headland for example, and
the reduction of the terraces.  But his dreams of orange-groves are
already quaint, because he knew nothing of the surprises in tree
form that the experimental botanists were preparing.  The forty-
ninth booknote is also devoted to planning.  "Plans for a world,"
he writes on the first page.  "Contributions."  He seems to have
amused himself with this book at irregular intervals.  There are
some brilliant anticipations in it and also some incredible
fantasies.  Occasionally, like every prophet, he finds detail too
much for him and lapses into burlesque.

There is a very long note of a very modern spirited discussion
about individuality which he had with Juanita when apparently they
were staying together at Montserrat.  The notes are the
afterthoughts of this talk, "shots at statement" as he would have
called them, and they bring back to the reader a picture of that
vanished couple who strolled just sixty years ago among the tumbled
rocks and fragrant shrubs beneath the twisted pines of that high
resort, both of them so acutely responsive to the drift of ideas
that made the ultimate revolution--she intent and critical, holding
on to her argument against his plunging suggestions, like someone
who flies a kite in a high wind.

"The individual is for the species; but equally the species is for
the individual.

"Man lives for the State in order to live by and through--and in
spite of--the State.

"Life is a pendulum that swings between service and assertion.
Resist, obey, resist, obey.

"Order, discipline, health, are nothing except to make the world
safe for the æsthetic life."

"We are Stoics that we may be Epicureans."

"Exercise and discipline are the cookery but not the meal of life.

"Here as ever--PROPORTION.  But how can proportion be determined
except æsthetically?

"The core of life is wilfulness."

So they were thinking in 2046.  Have we really got very much
further to-day?

7.  The Declaration of Mégève

Theotocopulos and his Juanita were present at the Conference at
Mégève which wound up the second World Council.  They both seem to
have been employed upon the decoration of the temporary town that
was erected for this purpose on those upland meadows.  The
notebooks, in addition to some very beautiful designs for metal
structures, contain sketches of various members of the Council and
some brilliant impressions of crowd effects in the main pavilion.
There is also a sketch of a painting Theotocopulos afterwards made;
it appears in all our picture-books of history: the tall presence
of old Antoine Ayala, standing close to the aeroplane in which he
departed for his chosen retreat in the Sierra Nevada; he is looking
back with an expression of thoughtful distrust at the scene of his
resignation.  The pilot waits patiently behind him.  "Well, well,"
he seems to say.  "So be it."  The sinking sun is shining in his
eyes, so that they peer but do not seem to see.

The drawing of nine of the World Councillors listening intently to
the statement of Emil Donadieu, the secretary of the Education
Faculty, is almost equally well known.

It was the most gentle of all revolutions.  It might have been a
thousand years away from the fighting and barricading, the pursuits
and shootings and loose murderings, of the older revolutionary
changes.  The Council suffered not overthrow but apotheosis.
Creation asserted itself over formal construction and conservation.
For a decade and more the various Controls had been showing a
greater and greater disregard of the Central Council; they had been
dealing directly with one another, working out their immense
cooperations without the intervention--which was more and more
inhibition--of the overriding body.  It was the Education Faculty
of the Control of Health and Behaviour that had at last provoked
the gathering.  It had in its own authority set aside the
prohibitions on naked athleticism which had been imposed by the
Council in its "general rules of conduct" thirty years before.  The
matter was a trifling one, but the attention of the Council was
drawn to it; and it was decided to choose the occasion for a
definite assertion of the Council's authority.  Was there still a
Supreme Government in the world? was the question posed by the
veteran ruling body.  Probably it seemed to them quite imperative
that there should be a supreme overriding body, and the bland
exposition of Emil Donadieu which dispelled this assumption must
have been an illuminating revelation to them of the march of human
ideas since those days of youthful zeal and vigour when they found
themselves directing the still militant World-State.

In those days the need for concentrated leadership had prevailed
over every other human consideration.  It had been necessary to
fight and destroy for ever vast systems of loyalties and beliefs
that divided, misled and wasted the energies of mankind.  It had
been necessary to replace a chaos of production and distribution
for individual profit by an ordered economic world system.  But
once this vast change-over was made and its permanence assured by
the reconstruction of education on a basis of world history and
social science, the task of a militant World-State was at an end.
The task of the World Council was at an end.

"But then who is to govern the world?" asked Eric Gunnarsson, the
youngest and most ambitious member of the Council.

"No need to govern the world," said Donadieu.  "We have made war
impossible; we have liberated ourselves from the great anti-social
traditions that set man against man; we have made the servitude of
man to man through poverty impossible.  The faculties of health,
education, and behaviour will sustain the good conduct of the race.
The controls of food, housing, transport, clothing, supply,
initiative, design, research, can do their own work.  There is
nothing left for a supreme government to do.  Except look up the
world it has made and see that it is good.  And bless it."

"Yes," said Eric Gunnarsson, "but--"

These words are registered in the phonograph record of the debate.
And with these two words Eric Gunnarsson, the ambitious young man
who may have dreamt at one time of being President of the World,
vanishes from history.

Donadieu went on to a brief history of government in human affairs,
how at first man could only think in personifications and had to
conceive a tribal God and a tribal King because he could not
conceive of organized cooperation in any other way; how Kings
remained all too individual and all too little social for anything
but the narrowest tribal and national ends, and how therefore they
had to be controlled and superseded by councils, assemblies and
congresses, which in their turn became unnecessary.  These ruling
bodies clamped men together through ages of discord until at last
the race could be held together in assured permanence by the cement
of a universal education.

But the gist of that debate was embodied in the "Declaration of
Mégève" with which the Conference concluded its deliberations.

"The World-State now follows all the subordinate states it
swallowed up to extinction; the supreme sovereign government, which
conquered and absorbed all minor sovereignties, vanishes from human
affairs.  The long, and often blind and misdirected, effort of our
race for peace and security has at length succeeded, thanks to this
great Council that now retires.  It retires with the applause and
gratitude of all mankind.  And now in serenity and security we can
survey the property it has redeemed from waste, this planet and its
possibilities, our own undeveloped possibilities too, and all the
fullness of life that lies before us.  This is the day, this is the
hour of sunrise for united manhood.  The Martyrdom of Man is at an
end.  From pole to pole now there remains no single human being
upon the planet without a fair prospect of self-fulfilment, of
health, interest, and freedom.  There are no slaves any longer; no
poor; none doomed by birth to an inferior status; none sentenced to
long unhelpful terms of imprisonment; none afflicted in mind or
body who are not being helped with all the powers of science and
the services of interested and able guardians.  The world is all
before us to do with as we will, within the measure of our powers
and imaginations.  The struggle for material existence is over.  It
has been won.  The need for repressions and disciplines has passed.
The struggle for truth and that indescribable necessity which is
beauty begins now, unhampered by any of the imperatives of the
lower struggle.  No one now need live less nor be less than his

"We must respect the race and each other, but that has been made
easy for us by our upbringing.  We must be loyal to the conventions
of money, of open witness, of responsibility for the public peace
and health and decency: these are the common obligations of the
citizen by which the commonweal is sustained.  We must contribute
our modicum of work to the satisfaction of the world's needs.  And,
for the rest, now WE CAN LIVE.  No part of the world, no work in
the world, no pleasure, except such pleasure as may injure others,
is denied us.  Thanks to you, Heroic Council; thanks beyond limit
to you."



1.  Monday Morning in the Creation of a New World.

2.  Keying up the Planet.

3.  Geogonic Planning.

4.  Changes in the Control of Behaviour.

5.  Organization of Plenty.

6.  The Average Man Grows Older and Wiser.

7.  Language and Mental Growth.

8.  Sublimation of Interest.

9.  A New Phase in the History of Life.

1.  Monday Morning in the Creation of a New World

With the Declaration of Mégève in 2059 C.E. the Age of Frustration,
the opening phase of the Era of the Modern State, came to an end.
Let us recapitulate that history in its barest outline.  The World-
State had appeared dimly and evasively, as an aspiration, as a
remote possibility, as the suggestion of a League of Nations,
during the World War of 1914-18; it had gathered experience and
definition throughout the decades of collapse and disaster; it had
formally invaded human politics at the Conference of Basra in 1965
as manifestly the only possible solution of the human problem, and
now it had completed its conquest of mankind.

The systematic consolidation of that conquest had begun in earnest
after the Second Conference of Basra in 1978.  Then the World
Council had set itself to certain tasks that had been so
inconceivable hitherto that not the most daring sociologists had
looked them in the face.  They had contented themselves with pious
aspirations, and taken refuge in the persuasion that, if they were
sufficiently disregarded, these tasks would somehow do themselves.
They were tasks of profound mental reconstruction, reconstruction
going deeper into the substratum of the individual life than
anything that had ever been attempted before.  In the first place
traditions of nationality had to be cleared away for good, and
racial prejudice replaced by racial understanding.  This was a
positive job against immense resistances.  Next a lingua-franca had
to be made universal and one or other of the great literature-
bearing languages rendered accessible to everyone.  This again was
not to be done for the wishing.  And thirdly, and most evaded of
all three obstacles that had to be surmounted, issue had to be
joined with the various quasi-universal religious and cultural
systems, Christianity, Jewry, Islam, Buddhism and so forth, which
right up to the close of the twentieth century were still in active
competition with the Modern State movement for the direction of the
individual life and the control of human affairs.  While these
competing cultures remained in being they were bound to become
refuges and rallying-shelters for all the opposition forces that
set themselves to cripple and defeat the new order of the world.

We have told already how that issue was joined, and shown how
necessary it was to bring all the moral and intellectual training
of the race into direct and simple relations with the Modern State
organization.  After 2020 there is no record of any schools being
open in the world except the Modern State schools.  Christianity
where it remained sacerdotal and intractable was suppressed, but
over large parts of the world it was not so much abolished as
watered down to modernity.  Everywhere its endowments had vanished
in the universal slump; it could find no supply of educated men to
sustain its ministry; the majority of its churches stood neglected
and empty, and when the great rebuilding of the world began most of
them vanished with all the other old edifices that lacked beauty or
interest.  They were cleared away like dead leaves.

The story of Islam was closely parallel.  It went more readily even
than Christianity because its school organization was weaker.  It
was pinned very closely to the teaching of Arabic.  The decadence
of that language shattered its solidarity much as the disuse of
Latin disintegrated Western Christianity.  It left a few-score
beautiful mosques as Christianity left a few-score beautiful
chapels, churches and cathedrals.  And patterns, legends, memories
remained over in abundance, more gracious and lovely by far than
the realities from which they were distilled.

There had been a widespread belief in the tenacity and solidarity
of Judaism.  The Jews had been able to keep themselves a people
apart, eating peculiar food and following distinctive religious
practices, a nation within the nation, in every state in the world.
They had been a perpetual irritant to statesmen, a breach in the
collective solidarity everywhere.  They had played a peculiar in-
and-out game of social relationship.  One could never tell whether
a Jew was being a citizen or whether he was being just a Jew.  They
married, they traded preferentially.  They had their own standards
of behaviour.  Wherever they abounded their peculiarities aroused
bitter resentment.

It might have been supposed that a people so widely dispersed would
have developed a cosmopolitan mentality and formed a convenient
linking organization for many world purposes, but their special
culture of isolation was so intense that this they neither did nor
seemed anxious to attempt.  After the World War the orthodox Jews
played but a poor part in the early attempts to formulate the
Modern State, being far more preoccupied with a dream called
Zionism, the dream of a fantastic independent state all of their
own in Palestine, which according to their Babylonian legend was
the original home of all this synthesis of Semitic-speaking
peoples.  Only a psycho-analyst could begin to tell for what they
wanted this Zionist state.  It emphasized their traditional wilful
separation from the main body of mankind.  It irritated the world
against them, subtly and incurably.

On another score also the unpopularity of Israel intensified in the
early twentieth century.  The core of the slump process was
manifestly monetary.  Something was profoundly rotten with money
and credit.  The Jews had always had and cultivated the reputation
of a peculiar understanding and cleverness in monetary processes.
Yet in the immense difficulties of that time no authoritative
direction came from the Jews.  The leading minds of the time who
grappled with the intricate problems of monetary reconstruction and
simplification were almost all Gentiles.  It was natural for the
common man to ask, "Where are the Jews?"  It was easy for him to
relapse into suspicion and persecution.  Were they speculating
unobtrusively?  It was an obvious thing for Gentile speculators to
shift suspicion to this race which gloried in and suffered by its
obstinate resolve to remain a "peculiar people".

And yet between 1940 and 2059, in little more than a century, this
antiquated obdurate culture disappeared.  It and its Zionist state,
its kosher food, the Law and all the rest of its paraphernalia,
were completely merged in the human community.  The Jews were not
suppressed; there was no extermination; there were world-wide
pogroms during the political and social breakdown of the Famished
Fifties, but under the Tyranny there was never any specific
persecution at all; yet they were educated out of their oddity and
racial egotism in little more than three generations.  Their
attention was distracted from Moses and the Promise to Abraham and
the delusion that God made his creation for them alone, and they
were taught the truth about their race.  The world is as full as
ever it was of men and women of Semitic origin, but they belong no
more to "Israel".

This success--the people of the nineteenth century would have
deemed it a miracle--is explicable because of two things.  The
first of them is that the Modern State revolution was from the
first educational and only secondarily political; it ploughed
deeper than any previous revolution.  And next it came about under
new and more favourable conditions.  In the nineteenth century the
family group had ceased to be the effective nucleus in either
economic or cultural life.  And all the odd exclusiveness of the
Jew had been engendered in his closed and guarded prolific home.
There is an immense collection of fiction written by Jews for Jews
in the early twentieth century, in which the relaxation of this
immemorial close home-training and the clash of the old and
modernizing generations is described.  The dissolution of Israel
was beginning even then.

The task of making the mind of the next generation had been
abandoned almost unconsciously, for Jew and Gentile alike, to
external influences, and particularly to the newspaper and the
common school.  After 1940 this supersession of home training was
renewed in an extensive form.  The Modern State movement had from
the outset gripped the teachers, re-created popular education after
the dark decades upon its own lines, and arrested every attempt to
revive competing schools.  Even had he desired it the Jew could no
longer be peculiar in the food either of his body or his mind.

The complete solidarity of mankind in 2059, the disappearance of
the last shadows of dislike and distrust between varied cults,
races, and language groups, witnesses to the profound truth of what
Falaise, one of De Windt's editors, has called the Mental
Conception of History.  The Age of Frustration was essentially an
age of struggle to achieve certain plainly possible things against
the resistances of a muddled human mind.  The Declaration of Mégève
was not simply an assertion of victory and freedom for the race, it
was the demonstration of its achieved lucidity.

As the curtain of separatist dreams, racial fantasies and hate
nightmares thinned out and passed away, what was presented to that
awakening human brain?  A little sunlit planet, for its external
material, bearing what we now realize is not a tithe of its
possible flora and fauna, a ball crammed with unused and
unsuspected resources; and for the internal stuff of that brain
almost limitless possibilities of mental achievement.  All that had
been done hitherto by man was like the scribbling of a little child
before eye and hand have learnt sufficient co-ordination to draw.
It was like the pawing and crawling of a kitten before it begins to
see.  And now man's eyes were open.

This little planet of which he was now at last in mentally
untroubled possession was not simply still under-developed and
waste; its surface was everywhere scarred and disfigured by the
long wars he had waged so blindly for its mastery.  Everywhere in
2059 the scenery of the earth still testified to the prolonged war,
the state of siege to establish a unified mastery, that had now
come to an end.  If most of the divisions and barriers of the
period of the sovereign states had disappeared, if there were no
longer castles, fortifications, boundaries and strategic lines to
be traced, there were still many indications that the world was
under control and still not quite sure of its own good behaviour.
The carefully planned system of aerodromes to prevent any untoward
developments of the free private flying that had been tolerated
after 2040 was such an indication, and so was the strategic import
plainly underlying the needlessly wide main roads that left no
possible region of insurrection inaccessible.  From the air or on a
map it was manifest that the world was still "governed".  The road
system was like a net cast over a dangerous beast.

And equally visible still was the quality of recent conquest in the
social and economic fields.  As Theotocopulos complained, the
Second Council overdid its embankments.  It was distrustful even of
the waters of the earth.  Its reservoirs and rivers had, he says,
"a bullied air".  If the jostling little fields and misshapen ill-
proportioned farms, the untidy mines, refuse-heaps, factories,
workers, slums and hovels and all the dire squalor of competitive
industrialism had long since disappeared from the spectacle, there
was still effort visible at every point in the layout of twenty-
first-century exploitation.  The stripping and burning of forests
that had devastated the world so extensively in the middle decades
of the preceding hundred years had led to strenuous reafforestation.
Strenuous is the word.  "Grow," said the Council, "and let there be
no nonsense about it."  At the end of the Age of Frustration a tree
that was not lined up and lopped and drilled was an exception in the

Everywhere there was still this suggestion of possible insubordination
and the sense of an underlying threat.  Man had struggled
desperately and had won, but it was only now that he was finding
time to consider any but the most immediate and superficial
possibilities of his planet.

The air-view as the dispersing delegates from Mégève saw it forty-
seven years ago was indeed in the vividest contrast to the world
garden in which we live to-day.  That clumsy rationality, that real
dread of æstheticism, that had haunted the Council to its end, had
made the artificial factors in the landscape inelegant and emphatic
almost without exception.  Bridges and roads "got there", as
Theotocopulos said, "like charging rhinoceroses".  True that the
disposition to squat forms, which came from the age of the air
raids, no longer prevailed, but there was a general tendency to
make buildings too solid and too big; they had sometimes a certain
grandiose boldness, but more often than not there was a touch of
military stupidity in the appearance of their piled-up masses.
They stood to attention.  There was a needlessly lavish abundance
of pylons, and they were generally too sturdy.

The enrichment of vegetation which is now world-wide was in
operation at that time only in a few experimental areas; in most
regions there was still hardly more forest or cultivation than had
existed a century and a half before.  If the devastation of
fellings and fires during the last wars had been replaced by the
new straight-ruled, squared-out forests, there was as yet no
perceptible rise in the level of the plant community anywhere; what
had previously been forest was plantation or forest again, and what
had been prairie was still prairie, differing only from the grass
prairies of older days in the dwindling contingent of weeds and
wild flowers.  In spite of the self-complacency of the forestry
department of that time, many trees distorted by disease survived,
and most were by our standards stunted.  To young eyes to-day this
world of our fathers, as they see it in picture book and panorama,
has not merely a regimented but a barren look, and its cultivation
seems laborious and poor.

Yet compared with the landscape of two centuries ago its aspect was
relatively prosperous, spacious and orderly.  There is something
very touching in the freely expressed response of the nineteenth-
century folk to both urban and country landscape and to natural
scenery generally.  They did not dream how meagre their descendants
were to find the spectacle before them.  They had, at any rate, as
good cloudscapes and sunsets as we have, and such natural coast
scenery as that of Western Scotland was practically the same then
as it is to-day.  They would endure irksome travel to see sunlit
snowy mountain masses or get to some viewpoint that caught the
rhythm of a distant chain.  They loved water and woodlands and
distant fields in a wide view, and towns they admired chiefly as
piled up accumulations seen from a distance.  Also they delighted
very greatly in the close brightness of flowering hedges, sheets of
bluebells, primrose rides, green moss and tendrils and any sort of
flower.  They pick these things out for appreciation so
persistently in their literature and paintings that it is only with
an effort we realize how much they were "picked out", and how dull
and repetitive were endless miles of their normal roads and
countryside and how flatly forbidding the ordinary aspects of their

So far as we can reconstruct it now the prevalent note of the
nineteenth century scene was weak insipidity, degenerating very
easily into a distressful mean ungainliness.  America was
frostbitten in the north and slovenly in the south and unkempt
everywhere.  Happily the shorter-lived, not very healthy or
vigorous folk of these days had no standards of comparison, and
actual intimations of discontent with nature and the countryside
were rare.  There is scarcely an admission in nineteenth-century
literature that the larger part of the natural world was gaunt,
unsatisfactory and utterly unsympathetic.  Writers and poets did
not dare to admit as much because they had neither the hope nor the
energy to make things better.  They would not see it in obedience
to an elementary psychological law.

But under the Second Council, the criticism not only of man's
achievement but of natural insufficiency had become voluminous
because neither was felt any longer to be final.  It was not only
the heavy engineering, the massive buildings and the over-emphasied
roadways that those returning delegates threatened with their
minds.  Much of the land was still unsettled.  They looked down on
areas of marsh and scrub, bare wildernesses of rock, rainless
regions, screes and avalanche slopes.  For them as for us it was a
world of promise still to be fulfilled.

"Now we can begin on all this," they said.  "Now we have really to

2.  Keying Up the Planet

It had long been known that the vegetation of earth and sea, on
which the volume and vigour of all other life depends, was not
nearly commensurate with the available moisture and sunlight.  As
early as the nineteen thirties it was being pointed out by an
English economic botanist, Frederick Keeble (1870-1975, Collective
Works in the Science section of the Reprints), that there were
delays and arrests in the multiplication of diatoms, seasonal grass
crops, and other extensive primary vegetable growths, arrests due
to the fact that while all other conditions were favourable the
supply of assimilable nitrogen was too slow to keep up the growth
process.  He applied the agricultural lesson of manuring to the
whole spectacle of life and insisted that we were living in a
"nitrogen-starved world".  Nitrogen is yielded up by the inorganic
world to the uses of life with extreme reluctance.  This
observation of Keeble's threw a new light for most people on the
alleged bounty of nature.  Other workers in the same field spread
their observations to other elements.  Carlos Metom (1927-2014), in
a striking passage, compared life on our planet to "a starveling
foal on a barren patch that has never learnt to look for green

This fundamental poverty of terrestrial existence can be traced
through most of the geological record.  Life has been a stinted
thing.  There were a few periods of exuberance, the period of the
Coal Measures for example, when life seemed really to pour upward;
but for most of recorded time life nibbled round the outside of a
ball of limitless mineral wealth to which it had no key.  No
individual intelligence could ever penetrate that hidden hoard of
plenty.  It was only when the collective mentality of Science had
arisen and was going on deathlessly from one clarification to
another that a far more abundant vegetable basis for animal and
human existence came within the range of possibility, and only now
that the waste of human energy in warfare and uncoordinated trading
and money-getting was at an end for ever, that the realization of
that possibility could be attempted.  But hundreds of thousands of
brains are now alight with the prospect of evoking such a plenty
and wealth of life on our planet as the whole universe had never
dreamed of before this time.

The Second Council, in the beginning of its long reign, had not a
sufficient knowledge of the latent powers of applied biology to
anticipate this fundamental enrichment of life.  It conceived its
rôle to be the working-out of the logical consequences of
mechanical invention during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
The greatest of these consequences were the abolition of distance
and the supersession of toil by power machinery.  The goal of the
Council was to confirm and establish human unity for ever, and to
set up a frame of progressive public activities that should provide
universal employment and universal purchasing power in the face of
a continually increasing industrial efficiency.  At first it was
preoccupied by the persecuting activities that were needed to
secure the world against any reaction towards private monopolization,
romantic nationalism, religious eccentricism, and social fission.
Then, as its success in this direction passed beyond challenge, as
the world community was plainly assured, it found itself confronted
by an ever more portentous problem of leisure.

It seemed a natural outlet for the surplus of human energy to
provide among other things for an enormous development of
scientific research and an exploration of the deeper mineral
resources of the earth's crust.  The Council assigned something
like a third of the resources available for science to biological
work, and it does not seem to have occurred to these rulers of the
world, preoccupied as they were with the suppression, the excessive
suppression, the obliteration even, of deleterious and antiquated
separatist doctrines and the refashioning of economic life, that
this huge growth of biological enquiry would result in anything
more than the extinction of plant and animal diseases, and
improvements and economies in cultivation.  It was outside the
range of their imaginations to anticipate a spate of biological
invention that put the spate of mechanical invention which
revolutionized the conditions of human life in the nineteenth and
twentieth centuries altogether in the shade.  Biological knowledge
outgrew them just as æsthetic sensibility outgrew them.

From the thirties of the twenty-first century onward the
conservatism of the Second Council had held back an increasing
amount of scientific discoveries from practical application.  The
world was unified; it was supporting its population (which was
being kept well below the modest safety line of 2000 million) with
absolute ease; its health was at a higher level than nature had
ever known before; and it was, so far as the powers in being could
manage it, marking time.  It was like an adolescent who is still
treated as a child.  Even the new possibilities of exuberant
vegetation were not being released.  The areas needed for food
supply could have been halved before 2050, but the Council decided
that the consequent dislocation of the population would be likely
to strain social order, and it kept four or five million people at
the healthy but not very entertaining work of agricultural
production, while it promoted enquiries for the "industrial
application of marginal excesses of foodstuffs".  It was not only
producing, but distributing, staples in 2050 on precisely the lines
adopted in 2020.  It was restraining educational developments and
innovations in building.  It had made the world safe for humanity,
and it meant to keep the world at that.

In 2047 Homer Lee Pabst published his remarkable researches on the
effect upon chromosomes of certain gases derived from the old
Sterilizing Inhalation made from Permanent Death Gas.  These gases
are known now as Pabst's Kinetogens, and there is a whole series of
them.  Their general effect is to produce mutations of various
types.  They bring about, abundantly and controllably, a
variability in life which has hitherto been caused only with
comparative rarity by cosmic radiations.  By 2050 the biological
world was confronted by a score of absolutely new species of plants
and--queer first-fruits in the animal world--by two new and very
destructive species of rodent.  The artificial evolution of new
creatures had come within the range of human possibility.

Limitless possibilities opened before the human imagination.  The
Council gave way to panic.  It saw the world it had taken such
pains to put in order given over to uncontrollable vegetable and
animal monstrosities.  A nightmare of evil weeds and strange beasts
dismayed it.  Even the human type, it realized, was threatened.
The laws restraining experiments upon animals were extended, and
every animal novelty produced by Pabst was to be reported upon and
destroyed.  Plant novelties of decorative or economic value were,
however, to be tolerated.  Within his laboratory and experimental
grounds Pabst ignored these prohibitions, and the faculty of
science increased the endowment of the new experimental genetics.
And now that the Supreme Council could no longer interfere, the
Transport and General Distribution Control, the newly developed
section of the Behaviour Control and the Health Services took up
Pabst's results and arranged a conference (2060) for their proper
exploitation.  A general plan for the directed evolution of life
upon the planet was drawn up, a plan which, with various
amendments, is in operation to this day.

Most of the "wild beasts" of our ancestors are now under control in
their special enclosures and reservations.  There are fifteen Major
Parks of over five hundred square miles in which various specially
interesting faunas and floras flourish without human interference,
except for the occasional passage of some qualified observer on
foot or the transit of a specially licensed aeroplane overhead.
Adventurous holiday-makers are excluded.  The creatures in these
areas are less affected by man than were their predecessors.  They
form a valuable reserve control of the genetic tentatives that are
being made upon their more or less captive brethren.  The most
startling result of these experiments is Dumoric's claim to have
restored, by means of carefully bred crosses and the cultivation of
atavistic types, extinct ancestral forms of the fallow deer.

One beneficial result of the preoccupation of the Second Council
with the problem of employment for idle hands and minds had
been the very great advances made in both mineralogical and
meteorological science.  It did not realize that the systematic
observation of winds and rainfall could possibly upset its orderly
world.  Indeed, the prospect of forbidding the wind to blow where
it listed was entirely after the Council's heart.  So, too, the
possibility of controlling or drying up volcanoes and earthquakes
appealed very strongly to it.  Before 2000, man's knowledge of the
composition of what he used to call the earth's "crust" and
the mineral resources of the planet beneath that crust was
extraordinarily superficial.  Geologists relied almost entirely for
their knowledge upon surface features, chance exposures, and
industrial excavations.  But the ever increasing resources
available for research made a systematic probing and exploration of
the deeper layers increasingly possible.  The student will find in
any contemporary textbook of Geology an account of the series of
beautiful contrivances such as the Shansi borer, the Hull and
Watkins "diviner," and the Noguchi petrograph, which have now made,
so to speak, hidden things visible to a depth of twenty-five miles,
and there too he will find a description of a score of ingenious
devices for isolating blocks of deep-lying rock and bringing their
desirable ingredients to the surface.  Until a hundred years ago
nothing of this sort was even imagined.  Instead of employing the
energy imprisoned underground to drive what was needed to the
surface, the scanty product of the old-world mines was HAULED up by
human or mechanical power from above and the ores and coal and salt
were actually hewn out in situ by hordes of sweating underpaid
human beings.

Equally rapid was the progress of meteorology once the Second
Council gave its mind to that subject.  Practical meteorology was
of very recent date.  Except for a little work with the barometer
from 1643 onward, forecasting began only in the nineteenth century
and was not systematically attempted until 1850.  An infinitesimal
tampering with the composition of the air began in the early
twentieth century.  Then man found himself able to withdraw
nitrogen from it, but this was done only to provide fertilizers,
and in such small quantities as to make no appreciable effect upon
the composition of the atmosphere.  Little more was attempted until
the last war, when the local use of substances like the so-called
Permanent Death Gas was carried out on a sufficiently big scale to
amount to a transitory readjustment of the air over the region
poisoned.  Then in the thirties of the twenty-first century there
was an extensive use of gas on a large scale to destroy locusts,
rodents, and various insect pests.  Considerable enthusiasm was
shown at the time, but one or two unfortunate accidents cooled the
zeal of the Council.  It was realized that air-mixing for anything
but stimulating and purifying purposes must wait upon the
achievement of wind control.  Air-mixing was put back into the
pigeonholes with a gathering number of other gifts from science
that the Council deemed premature.

The Joint Commission for replanning the world found itself
therefore with three correlated groups of possibility challenging
its spirit of adventure.  A new flora of several thousand species
was awaiting release from the experimental grounds, and this was
only the easiest of the apparently limitless possibilities of
animal and vegetable variation that experimental biology was taking
up.  A huge and hitherto unsuspected wealth of mineral substances
was ready to come out of the deep-lying rocks and refresh the
rather limited and jaded resources of the contemporary soil.  And
alterations in the composition and movements of the atmosphere were
no longer inaccessibly beyond human effort.  The obstruction of
individual ownership and localized governments had been swept away
for ever.  In that respect the Second Council had beyond question
triumphed.  But the very vigour with which it had done its task for
man and the world as they were, and still in effect are, had
cleared the ground for such an unprecedented inventiveness as is
now rapidly altering not only the face but the very substance of

The Replanning Commission set about its task with the leisurely
energy of a body under no stress of necessity.  "Life is quite good
as it is," runs the Introduction to its Draft Plan.  "But it is
part of the fundamental goodness of life that we have as much
incessant novelty as we desire at our disposal.  Due proportion
must be our perpetual care.  Want of proportion in the development
of new things was the general cause of the great bulk of human
suffering and frustration during the past five centuries.  We have
now an organization of controls that can restrain anything like the
spasmodic mercenary enterprise, without plan or balance, that let
loose disaster in the early twentieth century.  We can afford to
look before we leap and measure within quite close limits the tale
of consequences we set going.  In the end we may find that there
was very considerable justification for the restraint put by our
Supreme Council upon the immediate application of recent
inventions, and particularly of recent biological inventions, which
might otherwise have precipitated very similar but even more
fundamental and catastrophic disproportions to those which
overwhelmed the capitalist civilization of the nineteenth century.

"The particular field in which we propose a continuation of
restraint is in the application of the rapidly advancing science of
genetics to the increase of variability so far as human beings, and
probably some other of the higher mammals, are concerned.  We
believe that the general feeling of the race is against any such
experimentation at present.  Under the Second Council the painless
destruction of monsters and the more dreadful and pitiful sorts of
defective was legalized, and also the sterilization of various
types that would otherwise have transmitted tendencies that were
plainly undesirable.  This is as far, we think, as humanity should
go in directing its racial heredity, until our knowledge of
behaviour has been greatly amplified.  For an age or so we can be
content with humanity as it now is, humanity no longer distressed
and driven to cruelty by overcrowding, under-nourishment,
infections, mental and physical poisons of every sort.  There is a
rich mine of still greatly underdeveloped capacity in the human
brain as it is, and this we may very happily explore by means of
artistic effort, by scientific investigations, by living freely and
gaily, for the next few generations.  Normal human life can be
cleansed, extended and amplified.  With that we propose to content
ourselves.  Even upon this planet we have millions of years ahead
before there can be any fundamental change in our environment.

"Directly we turn from humanity to other forms of life it is
manifest that a most attractive realm is opening to us.  We may
have new and wonderful forests; we may have new plants; we may
replace the weedy and scanty greensward of the past by a subtler
and livelier texture.  Undreamt-of fruits and blossoms may be
summoned out of non-existence.  The insect world, on which so much
of the rest of life depends, may be made more congenial to mankind.
The smaller fry of life and the little beasts and the birds can be
varied now until they all come into a tolerable friendship with
ourselves.  As our hands lose their clumsiness we may interfere
more and more surely with the balance of life.  There is no longer
fear of abundance now that man is sane.

"Our planning of human activities for the next few generations will
involve no fundamental changes at all for humanity.  It will be a
keying-up of the sort of life for which our race, however darkly,
confusedly and unsuccessfully, has always striven.  At present
deliberate weather-control is too big a task for us, but we believe
that a sure weather calendar for a year or so ahead is now becoming
possible.  An immense series of enterprises to change the soil,
lay-out, vegetation and fauna, first of this region and then of
that, will necessitate a complete rearrangement of the mines, deep
quarries, road network and heavy sea transport of the globe.  None
of this need be ugly or repulsive, even in the doing; it can all be
made intensely interesting.  Engineering structure, which was once
clumsy and monstrous, is now becoming as graceful as a panther.
Industrial enterprises that formerly befouled the world with smoke,
refuse and cinder heaps, are now cleaner in their habits than a
well-trained cat.  The world lay-out of the Second Council,
designed apparently for a static society, will be to a large extent
swept aside by our new operations.  And no doubt our achievements
in their turn will give way to still bolder and lovelier

So ran the Introduction to what is known as the Keying-up Plan of
2060.  To-day we are most of us still immersed in its realization.
It has given the world occupation without servitude and leisure
without boredom.  When we have had enough of our own work for a
time we fly off--or walk round the corner--to see what other people
are doing.  The world is full of interest and delight, from the
forest gardens of the Amazons with their sloths, monkeys and
occasional pumas and alligators to that playground of the world,
the snowfields of the Himalayas.  We can arrange to take a turn
with the meteorological observers in the upper air, or tune our
lungs for a spell in the deep-sea galleries below the rafts of
Atlantis.  There we can see the great cephalopods of the middle
levels coming for their food or watch the headlong growth of a
giant pearl.

We are already so accustomed to grace, beauty and variety in all
the details and general forms about us that it is only by turning
over the pictures and records of seventy years ago that we realize
how relatively uneventful were the first decades of human unity.
At first man seems to have been so exhausted by his escape from
massacre, disease, economic waste and general futility, and so
terrified by the thought of any relapse into the old confusions,
conflicts and economic cannibalism, that he was capable of nothing
but order.  But he gathers courage.  It is not only our world that
is being keyed up, but ourselves.

3.  Geogonic Planning

Among the "deferred projects" that lie behind our current
activities, and second only to the system of schemes for inducing
and directing a great increase in human variability, is the complex
of plans that have been drawn out to alter the terrestrial
contours.  Here again is something far too great and dangerous for
our present wisdom, but something which it seems inevitable our
race will ultimately attempt.

At present, and for many generations yet, we are still the
creatures and subjects of geography; the oceans and great mountain
chains condition our lives.  They determine habitats, which again
determine the human type best adapted to live for the greater part
of its life in this or that region.  Every kind of us, dark or
fair, thick-set or slender, black or buff, has its own distinctive
best place in which to rear its children and work and rest.  It may
roam the earth as it will, but only in certain regions is it
altogether at home.  No type is at home everywhere.  There is no
universal man.  A universal type of man would be possible only on a
flat and uniform earth.  There is a necessary variety in humanity
which no one now desires to diminish.

But the question the modern geographer puts to us is whether there
is not a classification of habitats possible into very desirable,
desirable, undesirable, and inimical, and whether a certain
modification of the planet-levels operating in conjunction with the
restoration of forests now in progress would not greatly increase
the desirable habitats, by a redistribution of rainfall, a change
in the fall of the surface waters, protection from winds and so
forth.  A not very considerable rise in the Appennines, for
instance, would bring them up to the permanent snow-line and change
the character of the entire Italian peninsula.  And an increase in
desirable habitats may bring with it an increase in the variety of
desirable human types.

Yesterday this sort of thing was called "chimerical," to-day it is
impracticable and unnecessary, because of the volcanic forces that
might be released.  So for the present the geogonist, like the
geneticist, must content himself with dreams--in his case dreams of
moulding a fire-spouting, quivering planet closer to the expanding
needs of man.  His turn to remodel the world will come perhaps in a
thousand years or so.  There is plenty of time for that.

4.  Changes in the Control of Behaviour

The past forty-eight years have seen very great modifications in
the social control of individual behaviour.  There has been a very
great increase in the science, skill and quality of the teachers
throughout the world, but quite apart from that the character and
purpose of education and police have changed profoundly.

Education as we understand it to-day began about the middle of the
twentieth century.  It had only the slenderest continuity with the
education of the preceding age, just as the education of
Christendom had only the slenderest continuity with the education
of the pagan world.  Reading, writing, and counting were taught in
all three systems, but beyond that the very objectives were
different.  Modern education began as propaganda after the time of
De Windt, as the propaganda of the Modern State.  It sought to
establish a new complete ideology and a new spirit which would
induce the individual to devote himself and to shape all his
activities to one definite purpose, to the attainment and
maintenance of a progressive world-socialism, using an efficient
monetary system as its normal medium of relationship.

This seemed, and was, a gigantic undertaking.  It faced colossal
obstacles in ordinary human nature.  But it was supremely necessary
if human civilization was to continue.  The alternative was a
relapse through chaotic barbarism to animal casualness and final
extinction.  Thought and behaviour patterns had to be shaped
therefore to subserve this objective, to the relative disregard of
any other conceivable purpose.  The Modern State became the whole
duty of man.  This propaganda passed necessarily into a training
for public service and a universal public education.  The Modern
State Fellowship was a trained body pledged to impose its own type
of training upon all the world.  It proposed to be the New
Humanity.  It would accept no compromises.  It made the whole
educational framework militant.  No other type of school and no
other system of teaching was tolerated for more than half a
century.  Never before was man so directed and disciplined.

The educationists of this period of the First Council and the Air
Dictatorship were particularly sedulous to restrain what they
called "aberrant motives."  Austerity in eating and drinking,
hardiness, severity in exercise, a jealousy of leisure, and a
profound distrust of æsthetic and sensuous gratification, and
particularly of sexual excitement, marked the educational ideals of
these men who set out to demodel the world.  In the early stages of
progressive and revolutionary thought in the nineteenth century
there had been considerable laxity of private conduct.  There had
been a revolt against what was called "Christian morality," and a
disposition not simply to condone but encourage indulgence in forms
that had hitherto been prohibited.  Most of this "liberalism" in
conduct had vanished from revolutionary circles by the second or
third decade of the twentieth century.  The Modern State movement,
as it developed, was pervaded by a disapproval of every sort of
sensuous or emotional affection.  The business in hand could not
suffer it.  It wasted time; it wasted energy.  It let in too much
intrigue.  It undermined the common loyalty.  Not even Christianity
in its most militant stages was so set against the dissipation of
energy in this direction.  The new sexual puritanism differed from
the old in its toleration of birth control, its disregard of formal
marriage, and a certain charity towards the first excesses of
youth, but it insisted with even greater vigour upon public decency
and upon the desirability of sexual seriousness, enduring
connexions, and complete loyalty between lovers.  As a result the
world was far more monogamous, more decorous, and decently busy
after 2000 C.E., than it had ever been before.

Many critics to-day are disposed to consider the repressions of
that time excessive.  We are now in a different phase; the militant
age is past.  They allege that there was a vast amount of secret
and solitary vice and moral and mental distortion beneath the cold
surface of things during these disciplined years, and they consider
that the undeniable harshness and obstinacy of the Second Council
as it grew old was a direct result of its puritanism.  They do not
hesitate to use such terms as masochist and sadist.  But this is by
no means a unanimous opinion.  Equally reputable authorities deny
that there was any such seething pit of stifled desires and
thwarted motives under the orderly and healthy activities of the
constructive time as this new school pretends.  In no psychological
problem are we still so inadequately informed as in the
quantitative estimate of sexual impulse and restraint.

Our investigators work at literature, biographies, diaries,
pictorial art, police reports in their intricate attempt to recover
the vanished mental states of these departed generations.  There
seems to be a sort of rhythm in these things.  The contrast between
present conditions and conditions seventy years ago is paralleled
in history by the contrast between English social life in 1855 and
1925.  There also we have a phase of extreme restraint and decorum
giving way to one of remarkable freedom.  We can trace every phase.
Every phase is amply documented.  There are not the slightest
grounds for supposing that the earlier period was one of intense
nervous strain and misery.  There was a general absence of vivid
excitation, and the sexual life flowed along in an orderly fashion.
It did not get into politics or the control of businesses.  It
appears in plays and novels like a tame animal which is not to be
made too much of.  It goes out of the room whenever necessary.  By
comparison England in 1920 was out for everything it could do
sexually.  It did everything and boasted about it and incited the
young.  As the gravity of economic and political problems increased
and the structural unsoundness of the world became more manifest,
sexual preoccupations seem to have afforded a sort of refuge from
the mental strain demanded by the struggle.  People distracted
themselves from the immense demands of the situation by making a
great noise about the intensifications and aberrations of the
personal life.  There was a real propaganda of drugs and
homosexuality among the clever young.  Literature, always so
responsive to its audience, stood on its head and displayed its
private parts.  It produced a vast amount of solemn pornography,
facetious pornography, sadistic incitement, re-sexualized
religiosity and verbal gibbering in which the rich effectiveness of
obscene words was abundantly exploited.  It is all available for
the reader to-day who cares to examine it.  He will find it neither
shocking, disgusting, exciting or interesting.  He will find it
comically pretentious and pitifully silly.

It is small wonder that the scattered workers for the Modern State,
who were struggling heroically with the huge problems of social
dislocation and social reconstruction, developed an antipathy
against these æsthetic and sexual preoccupations which robbed them
of the help and service of so many hopeful youngsters.  The Modern
State Movement was unobtrusively puritanical from the outset.
After the romantic lapses of the First World Council it became
oppressively puritanical.

It was the precedent of the moral disorder of the early twentieth
century to which the Educational Control appealed, a hundred and
twenty years later, to justify its sustained regulation of private
morals and repression of stimulation.  It failed to realize the
profound difference of the new conditions.  The florid ebullition
of sexual troubles, sexual refinements and sexual grossnesses in
the Age of Frustration had been a natural consequence of
frustration.  Everywhere in the face of challenges too huge to
face, rich and poor alike found themselves aimless, unoccupied,
menaced.  Ill health was increasing.  Drugs, alcohol and sex were
available to excite and soothe and deaden their distressed nerves.
Good-looking youth, which could not sell its brains or labour,
could still find a market for its person.  About every nucleus of
unjustly acquired wealth or demoralized power prostitution and
parasitism festered.  What else was there to do in that ugly,
unhappy and dangerous world?  But the world of 2040 was a busy,
keenly interested and healthy world again.

We cannot detail in this general review of history the reluctant
lifting of one prohibition after another.  We may now go naked,
love as we like, eat, drink and amuse ourselves with our work or as
we will, subject only to a proper respect for unformed minds.  And
no harm has been done at all.  When the Puritanical Tyranny began,
its directors felt they had imprisoned a tiger that would otherwise
consume all the plenty and safety they achieved.  Very reluctantly
indeed, bit by bit and after endless disputes, were their
prohibitions relaxed.  And no tiger appeared.  Properly nourished
people do not take to gluttony, properly interested people are not
overwhelmed by sex.  Instead of a tiger appeared a harmless, quiet,
unobtrusive and not unpleasing pussy-cat, which declined to be in
any way notable.

Humanity was changing.  The threatened outbreak of pornography,
abnormality and sex excitation did not occur.  But anyone who
studies the fiction and drama of the past half-century and compares
it with the similar literature of the old world will realize that
there are far more personal love and far more happy lovers than
ever before, and that physical love to demonstrate loyalty, show
preference, enrich association and seal friendship was never so
direct and beautiful.  Jealousy we have, but it is rarely
malicious; desire, but it is rarely vicious.  In this as in so many
other things progress has meant simplification.  The souls we read
about of two centuries ago strike us as grotesquely tangled,
tormented and nasty souls.  Hate mingled with their desires;
mercenary considerations were an ever present defilement; they
paired dishonestly and mated insincerely.

But while there has been this release from the strait-laced sexual
morals of the militant period, in another field there has been no
relaxation.  The new order can tolerate no tampering with the
monetary-property system that holds us all together.  Not only is
our police incessantly alert against robbery and cheating as the
old world understood it, but many gainful practices that 1920 would
have considered tolerable or even admirable are suppressed, and are
likely to be suppressed for all time.  Gambling, the mean desire
and device to get the spending of someone else's earnings, is
punished as heavily as the forgery of money checks; and all those
speculative activities which seemed to be the very texture of the
nineteenth-century social order dare not reappear now in any
disguise at all.  Money is a check for our personal needs, or for
the giving of graceful presents.  There must be no misuse of money
to gain an advantage over another human being, even with that other
human being's connivance.  There we are still bound.  That sort of
thing is the vice of cannibalism.  Beyond that liberty increases

With a sound education of mind and body and a rigorous and exact
protection of property and money from dishonourable impulses, we
have found that it is possible to give every human being such a
liberty of movement and general behaviour as would have seemed
incredible to those militant socialists who ruled the world during
the earlier decades of the last century.  But it is just because of
their stern and thorough cleansing of human life that we can now
live in freedom.  We may go anywhere in the world now, we may do
practically anything that we can possibly desire to do.

5.  Organization of Plenty

Just as it becomes increasingly difficult for the teacher of
history to convey to each new generation what human feelings and
motives were like in a world of morbid infections and unwholesome
bodily habits or in a heavily sentimentalized atmosphere of general
distrust and insecurity, so also he has to make a most vigorous
imaginative effort to recover even the faintest shadow of the
pervading vexation, humiliations and straining anxiety that
resulted from an almost universal deficiency of common things.
Everybody, except a small minority, went short until the close of
the twentieth century.  Even the rich had to be wary cunning buyers
to satisfy all their fancies and desires.  The simplified economic
order of our world to-day runs so smoothly that we hardly think at
all about our ordinary needs.  Housing, food and clothing wait upon
us wherever we go.  It is so easily done that we fail to realize
the immense cleansing away of obstructive difficulties that had to
occur before it could be made so easy.

One of the results of abundance that our ancestors would have found
paradoxical is the abolition of encumbrance.  But the less there
was in the past the more you had to have and hold.  Men had to
appropriate things because there was not enough to go round.  Your
home was not simply the place to which you retired for solitude or
intimacy; it was a store house.  In the sixteenth or seventeenth
century it was even fortified by bars, locks and bolts against
robbers.  You got with difficulty, and what you got you kept.  The
successful man of those days was imprisoned and smothered in
accumulations upon which he dared not relax his watchfulness and
grip.  They were as indestructible as he could make them, for once
destroyed or ignored they might prove irreplaceable.  Everybody was
keeping things, keeping them rather than using them.  If they were
not wanted now they might be wanted presently.  If that successful
man desired to vary his urban life he had to possess a country
house.  In these establishments there had to be a miniature social
economy.  Much of the food was not only prepared in the personal
household, but produced on the private estate.  All this had to be
managed and watched to prevent waste, slackness and dishonesty.
All the clothes the prosperous man might want to wear had to be
stored and preserved in presses and wardrobes; his household needed
gear against any possible emergency; and all his accumulations had
to be guarded against robbers.  It was almost as anxious and
wearing a job to be rich as to be poor in those days of general
insufficiency.  And if the rich man travelled, he had to travel in
his own coach with his attendants, taking a great burthen of
clothing and general luggage with him.

In the relatively plentiful days of the later nineteenth century,
which in so many details foreshadowed and yet failed to complete
and generalize the conditions of our own time, there was for the
prosperous at least a certain alleviation of the burthen of
property.  The temporary achievement of a limited cosmopolitanism
of money and credit, the multiplication of the bourgeoisie, the
liquidation of ownership by joint-stock undertakings, the increased
facilities for communication and movement, made successful people
less disposed to sit down amidst their possessions.  There was a
sustained general effort, which we now find grotesque and
irrational, to keep property and at the same time not to be
bothered by property.  The ideal of success was no longer concrete
ownership but purchasing power.  Houses, furnishings and so forth
changed hands with increased readiness.

Instead of living in great complete houses and dining at home,
people lived in smaller houses or flats and dined in collective
dining-rooms or restaurants.  They gave up having country houses of
their own and travelled freely and variously, evoking a vast
industry of hotels and hired villas.  They travelled lighter--in
comparison with preceding centuries, that is.  As retail trade
organized itself upon big-business lines, the need for the private
storage of gear diminished.  People bought things when they wanted
them, because now they could do so.  The big "stores" of the early
twentieth century carried an enormous and greatly varied stock.

In the days of Shakespeare new clothes, new furniture, new houses,
new things of all sorts were infrequent; in the early twentieth
century there were already intimations of the general fresh newness
of our own times.  The facilities for scrapping were still poorly
developed, and there was much congestion and endless litter about,
but renewal and replacement for those who had purchasing power were
already well developed.  If it had not been for the social
catastrophe due to ignorance, individualism, monetary deflation and
nationalism that overwhelmed that phase of civilization, the
distributing organization of the world might very probably have
developed straight on from the system of linked stores as it
flourished in America in 1925 to our present conditions.  And
similarly there was an expansion of hotel life and a belated
beginning of portable country houses, clearly foreshadowing our
current arrangements.

After the disasters and new beginnings of the middle decades of the
twentieth century it was to the patterns of big business at the
close of the First Age of Abundance that the direction of the
Transport Union recurred.  We have told how easily and necessarily
that Union became the trading monopoly and finally, as the Air and
Sea Control, the actual government of the renascent world.  Its
counting-houses issuing and receiving its energy notes became the
New Banking; its Trading Council became the New Retailing; its
Supply Control took over, at last, the productive activities of the
world.  From the first the new powers were instinct with the idea
of mobility.  They had no vestiges in their composition of the
skimping and saving traditions of the ages of insufficiency.  They
set about providing as ample and various accommodation for
everybody as the ever-increasing production of the planet

The great distributing stores of the previous age provided the
patterns from which the new distribution developed in that age of
recovery.  Wherever old towns and cities were being reconstructed
or new ones appearing about new centres of productive activity the
architects of the Air and Sea Control erected their great
establishments, at first big and handsome after the old fashion and
then more finely planned.  At first these stores sold things
according to the old method, then gradually in regard to a number
of things, to clothing for example, they organized the modern
system of exchanging new things for old; the new shoes or garment
would be made and fitted to the customer and the old taken away and
pulped or otherwise disposed of.  Nothing is cobbled nowadays;
nothing is patched or repaired.  By degrees this method abolished
that ancient institution the laundry altogether.  That line of
fluttering patched and tattered garments so characteristic of old-
world village scenery vanished from the earth.  New rapid methods
of measuring and fitting replaced the tape, scissors and sewing of
the old days.  In the time of the Hoover Slump men would wear their
underclothes for years, having them painfully washed out, dried,
ironed and returned weekly, and they would wear their complex outer
garments with all the old fastenings, buttons, straps, buckles and
so forth, sometimes for many years.  They had to be made of dark
fabrics with broken patterns to conceal their griminess.  The
clothing of the Middle Ages was still filthier.  Nowadays the
average life of our much simpler and brighter outer garments with
their convenient zip fastenings is about a week, and such light
underclothes as we wear last about three days.  We keep no
wardrobes of them; the stores are our wardrobes.  If the weather
changes the stores are ready for us everywhere with wraps or
heavier or lighter materials.  It must be a remote expedition
indeed that needs a change of raiment.  We wear less clothing than
our ancestors, partly because of our healthier condition, partly
because we do not like to hide lovely bodies, but mainly because in
the past men wrapped themselves up against every contingency.  They
wore hats whenever they were not under a roof, socks inside their
boots, buttons on their sleeve-cuffs, collars and ties.  It seems
as though these elaborations became necessary to social prestige
because of the general shortage.  In an age of scarcity it was a
testimonial to one's worth to be fully clad.  In the nineteenth
century the well-to-do wore gold watch-chains and gloves, which
they carried in their hands in hot weather, as further evidence of
substantial means.

Housing again, under the Air and Sea Control, took off from the
point where the hotel-flat had left it in 1930.  There was never
any attempt to resume the building of those small permanent houses
which were spread so abundantly over England, for example, after
the World War.  The first task of the new world control was mainly
sanitary.  Infection lurked everywhere; four decades of social
disorder had made every building a decaying disease-trap for the
young that were born into it.  The Housing Control rebuilt the
housing quarters of the rotten old towns in the form of blocks of
dwellings, clean, spacious and convenient, but, to our eyes now,
very squat and dull.  They went from ten to twelve stories high,
and very soundly and honestly made.  Everywhere they had water,
lighting, heating in the colder climates, and sanitation.  The
picturesquely clustering rural villages were replaced all over the
earth by the same type of concentrated house-block, the style and
material varying only so far as conditions of climate required it.
The villages were literally swept up into these piles.  Even where
small private cultivation was still going on, the concentration
into these mansions occurred and the peasants bicycled out to their
properties.  Every block had its crèche, its school, its store and
its general meeting-rooms.

As we look back on it this supersession of the single separate
unlit, undrained and waterless hut or hovel, cottage or little
steading seems to have been a swift business, but in reality it
took from 1980 to 2030, much more than half the average lifetime,
to spread this new conception of housing over most of the world,
and by that time in the more advanced regions the older blocks were
already being replaced by more beautiful and convenient creations.

Historical Pictures shows us the whole process.  We see the
jumbling growths of the early phase of the twentieth century;
towering apartment-houses and hotels struggling up, far above the
churches, mosques, pagodas and public buildings, out of a dense
undergrowth of slums.  Then come arrest and decline.  The pictures
become as full of ruins, sheds and makeshift buildings as the
drawings of Albrecht Dürer.  Amidst these appear air-raid shelters
with their beetling covers, first-air pillars with their chequered
markings, and anti-aircraft forts.  Further ruin ensues and we see
life disorganized by the Great Plague.

Then suddenly these stout, squat, virtuous new blocks thrust into
the scene and the battered past vanishes.  A new Age has begun.
The towns grow larger, finer and more varied.  The housing blocks
are grouped with the expanding stores, public clubs and hotels in
parks and gardens near to the aerodrome, and convenient for
whatever industry gives the agglomeration its importance.  The
public club became prominent after C.E. 2000, both architecturally
and socially.  That again was the revival of two old ideas; it was
a combination of the idea of the English or American club with the
idea of the Baths to which the Roman citizens resorted.  Here from
the start were grouped the gymnastic and sports halls, dancing-
floors, conference rooms, the perpetual news cinema, libraries,
reading-rooms, small studies, studios and social centres of the
reviving social life.

The twenty-first century rediscovered an experience of the
nineteenth and of the first centuries of the Christian Era, a
discovery that was also made by Alexander the Great, that it is
much easier to build great modern cities in new places than to
modernize the old centres of activity.  And the more vital these
old centres remained the more difficult was their reconstruction,
because it meant the interruption and transfer of important
activities to new quarters.  New York was typical of this lag in
rebuilding.  Up to quite recently Lower New York has been the most
old-fashioned city in the world, unique in its gloomy antiquity.
The last of the ancient skyscrapers, the Empire State Building, is
even now under demolition in C.E. 2106!

This was not because New York has fallen out of things, but, on the
contrary, because it was in the van of the new movement.  We have
already quoted Nicholson's account of its reviving importance in
1960.  A year or so later it became the headquarters of the
American branch of the Sea and Air Control, a western equivalent to
Basra.  The swiftly expanding activities of the new government
needed immediate housing, and the gaunt surviving piles of Lower
New York were adapted hastily to its accommodation.  This kept them
going for a time, and then arose a prolonged controversy between
rival schools of planning for the reconstruction of that strangely
vital city.  It is not only true that the poorer the world was the
more it was encumbered by property, but also that the more
vigorously a place or a building is being used in progressive work
the more difficult it is to keep it up to date.

Since the middle of the twenty-first century there has been a
world-wide reappearance of the individual home, more particularly
on the countryside, by the sea, and amidst forests and mountain
scenery.  But it has reappeared in a new form.  It is not really
the same thing as the old cottage and country house.

The idea of a home made of portable material, constructed at some
convenient industrial centre and sent to any desired site, was
already in the minds of such restless innovators as Henry Ford
before the Decline and Fall.  The country college, the country
house, is an imaginative outlet.  For great numbers of men and
women comes a phase when the desire for that little peculiar place,
with its carefully chosen site, its distinctive long-coveted
amenities, its outlet upon the woods, the mountain, the jungle or
the sea, has an overpowering appeal.  There they will live, dream,
work and be happy.  Few of the many who had that dream could
satisfy it in the old days.  Some rare, rich persons were able to
buy land, build elaborately after their desires, make gardens.
When they died or became bankrupt other people without the leisure
to make their own homes bought the abandoned home.  They would far
rather have made a place for themselves, but there stood the
predecessor's desire in brick or stone, solid and irremovable, and
they did what they could, by means of alterations, to eliminate the
taste of him.

But as plenty and mechanical power increased, as the new road
system made more and more of the earth accessible, as power-cables
and water supply spread everywhere, it became easy not only to
clear away and obliterate the traces of houses that were done for,
but to bring a pleasant individualized country house within the
purchasing power of an increasing proportion of the population.
The mastery of power in our time is manifested almost as much by
its swift scrapping and scavenging as by its limitless productivity.
Nowadays a man or woman may hit upon an unoccupied site, spend a few
pleasant weeks planning and revising projects and designs, and give
his order.  In a month his home is ready, in a day or so more the
foundation has been laid, and in three or four weeks the dream is
realized; the house stands as he wished it to stand, connected to
the power mains, supplied with water, furnished to his taste smiling
and ready.  It is hardly more trouble than ordering an aeroplane or
an automobile.

In its earlier stages the evocation of the preconstructed house was
not so rapid, but from the first it was far quicker than the
laborious piling up of the old-world builder.

And with an equal facility now a house is cleared away.  We no
longer think it meet to wear another man's abandoned house any more
than we think it proper to wear the clothes of the dead.  Clearing
away, says Michael Kemal, is the primary characteristic of the
Modern Age.  The Age of Frustration was essentially an age that
could not clear away, either debts, sovereignties, patriotisms, old
classes, old boundaries, old buildings, old scores or old
grievances.  It is only in the past century that man has learnt the
real lesson of plenty, that far more important than getting things
is getting rid of things.  We are rich universally because we are
no longer rich personally.

We have mentioned the travelling wealthy man of the seventeenth
century, for then only the wealthy aristocrats could travel freely,
and we have glanced at the cumbersome impedimenta of his voyage.
Compare him with any ordinary man today who decides to take a
holiday and go to the ends of the earth.  He may arrange with a
travel bureau overnight for one or two special accommodations, then
off he goes in the clothes he wears.  He takes a wallet with his
money account, his identification papers and perhaps a memorandum
book.  He may wear, as many people do, a personal ornament or so
that has taken a hold upon his imagination.  He may carry something
to read or a specimen he wants to show.  Whatever else he is likely
to want on his way he will find on his way.  He needs no other
possessions because his possessions are everywhere.  We have solved
the problem of socializing property, the problem the early
twentieth century was unable to solve.  We have the use and
consumption of material goods without the burthen of ownership.

6.  The Average Man Grows Older and Wiser

The numbers and the quality of the human population have changed
very greatly in the past two centuries.  Always these things have
varied; every animal and vegetable species fluctuates continually
in the numbers and quality of its individuals; but it is only
recently that these movements have been recorded and examined
systematically.  The anti-progressives of the early twentieth
century loved to assert that "human nature" never altered; to
imagine that the men of the Stone Age felt and thought like bank
clerks picnicking in a cave, and that the ideas of Confucius and
Buddha were easily interchangeable with the ideas of Rousseau, Karl
Marx or De Windt.  They were not simply ignorant but misinformed
about almost every essential fact in the past experiences and
present situation of the race.  Only when the twenty-first century
was well under way did any consciousness of the primary operating
forces in human biology appear in the discussion and conduct of
world affairs.

In the year 1800 the total population of the world was under 900
millions, and the average age was about 22.  In 1900 the population
had doubled and the average age had risen by nearly ten years.  In
1935 a maximum was attained of 2000 millions and the average age
had mounted to nearly 40.  In a hundred years the facilities for
intercommunication and physical reaction had increased beyond all
measure.  But the statesmen, educators and lawyers of that age, as
we have shown very plainly in this history, were unaware of any of
these differences that had occurred since their methods were
developed.  They drooled along according to precedent.  A set-back
for adjustment was therefore inevitable.  We have told the broad
facts of the crash that began with the war massacres of 1914-18 and
culminated in the cycle of pestilences before 1957.  In thirty
years the population of the earth fell to about one thousand
millions or less, and the average age receded to something about
23.  This was a stupendous recession, not merely in numbers but in
the maturity of the average mind.

Then came the Air and Sea Control and the First and the Second
Council with their restoration of hygienic conditions and their
scientific planning.  The increase of population was watched and
restrained for a century, but the average age extended until now it
is 62 and still rising.  The population total crept back to 1500
millions in 2060 and reached 2000 millions again in 2085.  It has
become manifest that such a population is no longer unwieldy, and
that with the scientific education and behaviour control we now
possess a considerable further increase can be contemplated without

The population of the earth is now 2500 millions, and it will
probably be let up to 4000 millions as rapidly as the world is
keyed up for its full support and happiness.  The danger of such a
population swarming dangerously or getting into panics, mental
jams, crushes and insanitary congestions grows less and less.  The
opinion of contemporary authorities is that 4000 millions is an
optimum, and that before many decades have passed it will be
possible to keep most of those born actively and happily alive to
something like 90 years of age.  But the question of the
possibility and advisability of prolonging the individual life more
than three or four decades beyond the "threescore and ten" of the
Biblical barbarian is still an open one.  It is possible that there
is a limit to the memories a brain can carry and to its power of
taking new interest in fresh events.  There may be a natural death
for most people in the future about the age of a hundred or a
little more, as painless and acceptable as going to bed and
sleeping after a long and interesting day.

These quantitative biological alterations involve the profoundest
differences in the quality of every life concerned.  It is not
simply that each individual has now a justifiable faith that he
will live out his life to the end, but that the conditions in which
he lives call out quite a different reaction system from that
evoked in the past.  Before the Middle Ages people thought of their
grandparents as older and mightier people, but we think of our
ancestors as younger and feebler people.  Those earlier generations
were like fresh-water fish, living in shallow, saline and readily
dried-up water, in comparison with others of the same species
living in a deep, abundant, well-aerated and altogether congenial
lake.  They were continually uncomfortable, constantly stranded by
circumstances; they flapped about wildly and died early.  Although
they were the same in essence, their behaviour, their very
movements, were like the behaviour of a different species of being.

Consider the existence of a young man in Shakespeare's time.  If he
did not die young he aged rapidly.  He would be heavy, old and
pompous at forty.  A swarm of ailments lay in wait for him to
emphasize and accelerate his decay.  Youth was stuff that would not
endure.  The beauty and vitality of women were even more
evanescent.  So they snatched at love and adventure.  The world was
full of Romeos and Juliets at the crest of their passionate lives
in their teens, who nowadays would be in the college stage of
education, a score of years away from any conclusive drama.  The
literature of the time witnesses to a universal normal swift
transitoriness.  The simple precipitate love story, the jealousy,
the headlong revenge and so on makes the substances of drama,
romance and poem.  That and the grab at spendable wealth: El
Dorado, treasure trove or robbery attempted and defeated.  A career
was made or marred by a week's folly, and there was little time to
recover it before the end.  It is extraordinarily interesting to
note all the things in life that are left out by the Elizabethan
literature, and so to measure that smaller brighter circle of
interest in that age.

The changing biological conditions between 1840 and 1940 mirror
themselves faithfully in the art and reading of the decades.  The
novel, which is at first pervaded by a gay hello to life, which
accepts everything as cheerfully as a young animal, which laughs,
caricatures and incites, becomes reflective, analytical,
purposeful.  Life no longer ends at the first rush.  The proportion
of novels to other books diminishes.  The penetration of the
individual consciousness by the great social and economic processes
that were going on becomes more and more evident.  When literature
revived at the close of the twentieth century it was an adult
literature, expressing the mentality of readers and writers who
were fully grown men and women in a planning world that had ceased
to be accidental and incoherent.  In the novel as it then
reappeared there is much more about personal love and the interplay
of character, but far less (and the proportion continues to
diminish) about the primary love adventure.

That diminution of haste and avidity, of the quick egotism and
swift uncritical judgment of youth, still continues.  The
deliberation, serenity and breadth of reference in the normal life
increase.  The years from thirty to seventy were formerly a sort of
dump for the consequences of the first three decades; now they are
the main part of life, the years of work, expression and complete
self-discovery, to which these earlier stages are the bright,
delightful prelude.  There was a time when the man or woman over
forty felt something of a survivor; he was "staying on"; relatively
the world swarmed with youth, with the swiftness, rivalries and
shallowness of youth: the fitness of the ill-protected body had
gone already; the elderly people who were "getting on for fifty"
moved slowly and had duller if sounder apprehensions.  But now most
of us are in the graver years with our bodies and apprehensions
unimpaired, and there is no longer the same effect of being rather
in the way of a juvenile treat.  The juvenile treat, the age when
even the old aped the young, ended in the World War and the
economic collapse.  After that came a struggle, at first
unconscious and then open and declared, between youth and mental

In the bad years after the World War for a couple of generations
there was a very unhappy relapse towards youthful predominance.
The old people had failed to avert the collapse, the legitimate
seniors for the new period were dead and broken and morally
disorganized, and there was a sort of poetic justice in the stormy
release of puerility that ensued.  Italy was scourged by its
hobbledehoys in black shirts; Russia was ruled by the blue-chinned
Young; Ireland was devastated by hooligan patriots; presently
Germany, after brooding over its defeat for ten years, had a
convulsive relapse to fiercely crazy boyishness in the Nazis.
Indian patriotism had a kindred immaturity.  The tender years of
many of the young revolutionaries executed by the British, outrage
our standards of toleration.  Everywhere was youthful ignorance
with lethal weapons in its hands, conceited, self-righteous,
exalted, blind to the tale of consequences.  Breaking up things is
the disposition of youth, and making is not yet in its experience.
Liberalism and the middle-aged had a phase of unprecedented
ineffectiveness.  There seemed to be no judgment left in the world,
and the young, in masks and requisitioned cars, making nocturnal
raids, indulging in punitive cruelties, beating, torturing,
displaying in equal measure physical recklessness and moral panic,
came near to wrecking the whole civilizing process.

It is an interesting task to trace the gradual maturing of these
adolescent organizers that seized so much of the control of the
world in that age of transitional disorder.  There are voluminous
books in which Fascism in 1920, Fascism in 1930, and Fascism in
1940, or again Communism in the same decades, is elaborately
compared with itself.  After all their impatience and sentimentality,
their rank patriotism and reactionary cant, we find these youth
movements unobtrusively sneaking back to planning, discipline, and
scientific methods.  Millions of young men who began Fascist, Nazi,
Communist and the like, blind nationalists and irrational partisans,
became Modern State men in their middle years.  They became at last
instruments to realize the plans and visions of the very men they
had hunted, maltreated and murdered in the crude zeal of their first

But now youth is well in hand for ever, and when we speak of a man
to-day we really mean a different being from a nineteenth-century
man.  Bodily he is sounder and fitter, almost completely free from
disease; mentally he is clear and clean and educated to a pitch
that was still undreamt of two centuries ago.  He is over fifty
instead of being under thirty.  He is less gregarious in his
instincts and less suggestible because he is further away from the
"home and litter" mentality, but he is far more social and
unselfish in his ideology and mental habits.  He is, in fact, for
all the identity of his heredity, a different animal.  He is bigger
and stronger, more clear-headed, with more self-control and more
definitely related to his fellow creatures.

This is manifest everywhere, but it is particularly visible in
such regions as Bengal and Central China.  There we find the
direct descendants of shrill, unhappy, swarming, degenerate,
undernourished, under-educated, underbred and short-lived
populations among the finest, handsomest, longest-lived and ablest
of contemporary humanity.  This has been achieved without any
attempt at Positive Eugenics; it has resulted from the honest
application of the Obvious to health, education, and economic
organization, within little more than a hundred years.  These
populations were terribly weeded by the pestilences of the age of
disorder and grimly disciplined by the Tyranny.  They are now,
after that pruning and training bearing as fine flowers of literary
and scientific achievement as any other racial masses.

7.  Language and Mental Growth

(I print this section exactly as Raven wrote it down.  It is, the
reader will remark, in very ordinary twentieth-century English.
Yet plainly if it is a part of a twenty-second-century textbook of
general history it cannot have been written originally in our
contemporary idiom.  It insists upon a refinement and enlargement
of language as if it had already occurred, but no such refinement
is evident.  It must have been translated by Raven as he dreamt it
into the prose of to-day.  If he saw that book of his at all, he
saw it not with his eyes but with his mind.  The actual page could
have had neither our lettering, our spelling, our phrasing nor our

One of the unanticipated achievements of the twenty-first century
was the rapid diffusion of Basic English as the lingua franca of
the world and the even more rapid modification, expansion and
spread of English in its wake.  The English most of us speak and
write today is a very different tongue from the English of
Shakespeare, Addison, Bunyan or Shaw; it has shed the last traces
of such archaic elaborations as a subjunctive mood; it has
simplified its spelling, standardized its pronunciation, adopted
many foreign locutions, and naturalized and assimilated thousands
of foreign words.  No deliberate attempt was made to establish it
as the world language.  It had many natural advantages over its
chief competitors, Spanish, French, Russian, German and Italian.
It was simpler, subtler, more flexible and already more widely
spoken, but it was certainly the use of Basic English which gave it
its final victory over these rivals.

Basic English was the invention of an ingenious scholar of
Cambridge in England, C. K. Ogden (1889-1990), who devoted a long
and industrious life to the simplification of expression and
particularly to this particular simplification.  It is interesting
to note that he was a contemporary of James Joyce (1882-1955), who
also devoted himself to the task of devising a new sort of English.
But while Ogden sought scientific simplification, Joyce worked
æsthetically for elaboration and rich suggestion, and vanished at
last from the pursuit of his dwindling pack of readers in a tangled
prose almost indistinguishable from the gibbering of a lunatic.
Nevertheless he added about twenty-five words to the language
which are still in use.  Ogden, after long and industrious
experimentation in the reverse direction, emerged with an English
of 850 words and a few rules of construction which would enable any
foreigner to express practically any ordinary idea simply and
clearly.  It became possible for an intelligent foreigner to talk
or correspond in understandable English in a few weeks.  On the
whole it was more difficult to train English speakers to restrict
themselves to the forms and words selected than to teach outsiders
the whole of Basic.  It was a teacher of languages, Rudolph Boyle
(1910-1959), who contrived the method by which English speakers
learnt to confine themselves, when necessary, to Basic limitations.

This convenience spread like wildfire after the First Conference of
Basra.  It was made the official medium of communication throughout
the world by the Air and Sea Control, and by 2020 there was hardly
anyone in the world who could not talk and understand it.

It is from phonetically spelt Basic English as a new starting-point
that the language we write and speak to-day developed, chiefly by
the gradual resumption of verbs and idioms from the mother tongue
and by the assimilation of foreign terms and phrases.  We speak a
language of nearly two million words nowadays, a synthetic language
in fact, into which roots, words and idioms from every speech in
the world have been poured.  K. Wang in a recent essay has shown
that there are still specializations of vocabulary.  The vocabulary
of a score of recent writers of Italian origin chosen haphazard
shows a marked preference for words derived from the Latin, in
comparison with twenty Eastern Asiatic writers whose bias is
Chinese and American.  Yet they can all understand one another and
they are all in one undivided cultural field.

There are few redundancies in the new English of today and tomorrow,
and there is an increasing disposition to take synonyms, and what
used to be classified as "rare" or "obsolete" terms, and re-define
them to convey some finer shade of meaning.  Criticism, in the form
of the Dictionary Bureau, scrutinizes, but permits desirable
additions.  One can feel little doubt about the increasing delicacy
and precision of expression to-day if we compare a contemporary book
with some English classic of the eighteenth or nineteenth century.
That is still quite understandable to us, but in its bareness and
occasional ineptitudes it seems halfway back to the limitations and
lumberingness of Early English or Gothic.

The fuller the terminology the finer the mind.  There can be very
little doubt that the brain of a twentieth-century man compared
with the brain of an ordinary man to-day, though in no way
intrinsically inferior, was a far less polished and well-adjusted
implement.  It was warped by bad habits, cumbered with a tangle of
unsound associations, clogged with unresolved complexes; it was
like a fine piece of machinery in a state of dirt and neglect.  The
modern brain is far more neatly packed and better arranged, cleaner
and better lubricated.  It not only holds much more, but it uses
the larger keyboard of our contemporary language more efficiently.
The common man to-day is apt to find the philosophers and
"thinkers" of two centuries ago unaccountably roundabout, tedious
and encumbered.  It is not so much that he finds them obscure, but
that when at last he has dragged the meanings out of their jungles
of statement into the light of day he finds he has thought all
round them.

An interesting and valuable group of investigators, whose work
still goes on, appeared first in a rudimentary form in the
nineteenth century.  The leader of this group was a certain Lady
Welby (1837-1912), who was frankly considered by most of her
contemporaries as an unintelligible bore.  She corresponded
copiously with all who would attend to her, harping perpetually on
the idea that language could be made more exactly expressive, that
there should be a "Science of Significs".  C. K. Ogden and a fellow
Fellow of Magdalene College, I. A. Richards (1893-1977), were among
the few who took her seriously.  These two produced a book, The
Meaning of Meaning, in 1923 which counts as one of the earliest
attempts to improve the language mechanism.  Basic English was a
by-product of these enquiries.  The new Science was practically
unendowed, it attracted few workers, and it was lost sight of
during the decades of disaster.  It was revived only in the early
twenty-first century.

Then Carl Ratan became the centre of a group of workers inspired by
the idea of making English more lucid and comprehensive and a truly
universal language.  His work has expanded into the voluminous
organization of the Language Bureau as we know it to-day.  The work
of that Bureau has been compared to the work of the monetary
experts who finally made money exact a hundred and fifty years ago.
Just as civilization was held back for some centuries by the
imperfections of the money nexus, so we begin to realize to-day
that our intellectual progress is by no means so rapid as it might
be because of the endless flaws and looseness of the language

An interesting compilation in hand, which promises to become a
veritable history of philosophy and knowledge is the Language
Discard.  This project was originally set going by the Dictionary
Section of the Language Bureau, as a mere account rendered of
obsolete or obsolescent terms or terms which have become greatly
altered from their original meaning; but the enquiry into the
reasons for these changings and preferences and abandonments led
very directly into an exhaustive analysis of the primary processes
of human thought.  A series of words, "soul spirit, matter, force,
essence", for example, were built into the substance of Aryan and
Semitic thought almost from their beginnings, and it was only quite
recently that the exhaustive analyses by Yuan Shan and his
associates of these framework terms made it clear that the
processes of Chinese and Negro thinking were by no means parallel.
Translation between languages, in all matters except matters of
material statement, is always a little loose and rough, but between
the ideology underlying the literature of Eastern Asia or the
attempts of Africans to express themselves and that embodied in the
ruling language of to-day the roughness approaches violence.  That
clash, as it is examined, is likely to produce very extensive
innovations in our philosophical (general scientific) and technical
nomenclature.  We are speaking and writing a provisional language
to-day.  Our great-grandchildren will no more think of using many
of our terms and turns of expression to-day than we should think of
resorting again to the railway train, the paddle steamboat and the
needle telegraph.

This rearrangement of the association systems of the human brain
which is now in progress brings with it--long before we begin to
dream of eugenic developments--the prospect of at present
inconceivable extensions of human mental capacity.  It will involve
taking hold of issues that are at present quite outside our grasp.
There was a time when early man was no more capable of drawing a
sketch or threading a needle than a cow; it was only as his thumb
and fingers became opposable that the powers of craftsmanship and
mechanism came within his grip.  Similarly we may anticipate an
enormous extension of research and a far deeper penetration into
reality as language, our intellectual hand, is brought to a new
level of efficiency.

There is not only this sharpening and refinement of the brain going
on, but there has been what our great grandparents would have
considered an immense increase in the amount, the quality, and the
accessibility of knowledge.  As the individual brain quickens and
becomes more skilful, there also appears a collective Brain, the
Encyclopædia, the Fundamental Knowledge System which accumulates,
sorts, keeps in order and renders available everything that is
known.  The Encyclopædic organization, which centres upon
Barcelona, with its seventeen million active workers is the Memory
of Mankind.  Its tentacles spread out in one direction to millions
of investigators, checkers and correspondents, and in another to
keep the educational process in living touch with mental advance.
It is growing rapidly as the continual advance in productive
efficiency liberates fresh multitudes of workers for its services.
The mental mechanism of mankind is as yet only in its infancy.

Adolescence perhaps rather than infancy.  It is because the mind of
man is growing up that for the first time it realizes that it is

8.  Sublimation of Interest

Not only is the average man to-day an older and graver creature
than his ancestor of three centuries ago, but he is very
differently employed.  There has been a great diversion of his
interest from the primary necessities of life.

Three centuries ago, well over ninety per cent of the human
population was absorbed either in the direct production of
necessities or in the scramble to get them from their original
producers.  Direct producers, the peasants and toilers, the
entrepreneurs and their managers and directors, and direct
distributors accounted for upward of eighty per cent of the human
total; the rest were the millions of interveners, usurers, claim-
makers, landowners, rentiers, solicitors, speculators, parasites,
robbers, and thieves who were deemed necessary to ginger up the
economic process.  The forces of law, order and education,
excluding temporary conscription and levies for military ends, took
up five or six per cent of the residue, and a small minority,
something under five per cent of the total population, supplied all
the artistic effort, the scientific enquiry, the social and
political thought, the living soul of the entire social body.

The systems of interest of most people were therefore restricted
almost entirely to work and the struggle to possess.  They had to
think continually of the work they did either for their own profit
or for the personal profit, comfort or fantasy of some employer.
They had to think of keeping their jobs or of getting fresh ones,
and this, in the days of narrowing employment after the Hoover
Slump, became at last a monstrous obsession of the brain.  What
they earned they had to spend carefully or guard carefully, for the
rascaldom of business was everywhere seeking to give nothing for
something.  Sometimes, sick of their narrow lives, they would
gamble in the desperate hope of a convulsive enlargement, and for
most of them gambling meant disappointment and self-reproach.  Add
to these worries a little love, a good deal of hate, and a
desperate struggle to see it all in a hopeful and honourable light,
a desperate hunger to be flattered and reassured, and you have the
content of ninety-nine per cent of the human brains that made the
world of 1930.  They could no more escape from this restricted
circle of urgently clamorous interests, hardly ampler than the
circle of an animal's interest, than the animals can.

The Modern State has broken this cramping circle of interests for
every human being.  We are still creatures with brains like our
forefathers, corresponding ganglia to ganglia and fibre to fibre,
Modern State, by ensuring plenty and controlling the increase of
population, has taken all the interests of the food-hunt and the
food-scramble, and all the interests of the struggle to down-and-
out our human competitors, away from the activities of the
individual brain.  A relatively small number of specialized workers
keep the necessary Controls of these primary preoccupations going.
We worry about food, drink, clothing, health and personal freedom
no more.  The work we MUST do is not burthensome in amount, and it
is the most congenial our educational guardians can find for us and
help us to find.  When it is done we are sure of the result; nobody
is left in the world to cheat us or rob us of our pay.  We are
still competitive, more so perhaps than ever; jealousy still wars
with generosity in us; the story of our personal affections is
rarely a simple story; but the interest we feel in our work is a
masterful interest and not a driven interest, and our competition
is for distinction, appreciation and self-approval and not for
mutual injury.  There has been a release of by far the larger
moiety of the mental energy of the normal man from its former
inescapable preoccupations.

This steady obliteration of primary motives is manifested most
illuminatingly by the statistics of what used to be "Crime and
Punishment", figures of the offences, insubordinations and
deliberate outrages upon social order and the consequent
punishments and corrective proceedings that are issued by the
disciplinary organization of the Behaviour Control.  Statistics for
the years of decadence are not forthcoming, but there is plentiful
material from the comparatively orderly and prosperous period
between 1890 and 1930.  Great Britain then constituted the
healthiest and most law-abiding community in the world, but the
figures that emerge to the student of history present what seems to
us an appalling welter of crime.  Stealing, cheating of every sort,
forgery, burglary, robbery with violence, poisoning and other forms
of murder, occurred daily.  It did not seem as though that thick
defilement of wrongdoing about property could ever cease.
Innumerable suicides occurred through pecuniary worry.  Yet now all
these crimes, which filled the jails, arising out of the scramble
for money and property in an age of insufficiency, have almost
completely vanished from human life.  The Behaviour Control Report
for 2104 (2105 is not yet available) records 715 cases of stealing
for the whole world.  In nearly every case the object stolen was
some personal work of art, some small jewel, a piece of embroidery,
a pet animal, several children, and--in one instance--the bulb of a
new variety of lily that aroused the instinct to possess and care
for.  It is doubtful whether there were many undetected or
unreported thefts.

There has not, however, been anything like the same abolition of
personal offences.  They have diminished.  But while the property
offences have diminished to the scale of one-ten-millionth of the
old-world figures, these others show a reduction in the nature of
single instances to former hundreds.  Many types in our population
are still very easily turned toward sexual lawlessness.  Beautiful
and attractive people and particularly attractive children are not
yet perfectly immune from undesired solicitation, personal
persecution, annoying assault and resentful injury.  Jealousy is
still a dangerous passion, more particularly below the age of
forty.  The Behaviour Control ascribes nearly 520,000 offences to
this group of urgencies, mostly assaults of varying degree of
malignity, culminating in 67 murders.  There were also 2192
suicides in the total.  These figures show only a slight
improvement upon the annual average for the previous decade.

Another difficult class of offence which finds no exact parallel in
the criminal statistics of former times, unless the British offence
of "malignant mischief" is to be put in this group, are acts of
annoyance, destruction, assault and so forth, due to competitive
jealousy and the exasperation aroused, often quite unwittingly, by
the bearing or achievements of one's fellow creatures.  This sort
of misbehaviour varies in degree from the black hatred and fury of
an uncontrolled egotism to what verges in some cases upon
justifiable criticism of slightly fatuous or self-complacent
behaviour.  Four murders, some hundreds of assaults and acts of
wanton destruction in this category, witness to the fact that this
world is still not a Paradise for every type of individual.  Either
they are bitter by some inner necessity or they have been
embittered.  Yet when we take the grand total of every misdeed that
had to be dealt with last year, counting even the most petty
occasions for restoration, warning or reproof, and find it is just
three quarters of a million in a world of 2500 million people, we
have a quantitative measure of human progress in two brief
centuries that justifies a very stalwart confidence in the human
outlook.  The imagination of man's heart is no longer evil
continually.  It is only evil occasionally, and the practical task
of our social psychologists is to reduce those occasions and

The abundant release of brain-stuff, the mental plenty which has
resulted from the organization of material plenty, is of necessity
being directed into new channels.  That meagre half per cent or
less of creative workers of the old régime, the few curious men who
played about with novel ideas, the odd men of leisure who collected
"rarities" and inventions, has grown into a mighty body of enquiry,
experiment, verification and record which is becoming now the
larger part of the world's population.

We know now certainly what the people of three centuries ago never
suspected, that the human brain released from hunger, fear and the
other primary stresses is very easily amenable not only to creative
and directive desire but also to kindly and helpful impulses.
Almost all the people who keep our productive, our distributing and
transport services going are there because they find the work
entertaining, because they like making the machine work well and
helping people.  There is a satisfaction in being able to do things
skilfully for others that they could not do nearly so well for
themselves.  The barbers, shoemakers, tailors, dressmakers,
hatters, outfitters and so forth in the great stores to-day are
very different people from the rather obsequious, deferential
"inferiors" who made our great-great-grandfathers presentable to
the world.  Their essential interest is to make their customers
sightly and comfortable and not to earn a profit for an employer.
The old literature reeks with contempt for barbers and tailors and
cobblers, often the contempt of profound resentment.  If the common
man despised the cobbler, the cobbler pinched his toe and chafed
his heel.  The barber, it seemed, did no more than cut hair rather
badly, and the tailor cut clothes.  Except by accident, the barber
had ceased to be a barber-surgeon.  But nowadays the old-world
barber would scarcely recognize himself in the barber-dentist, the
kindly expert who sees to our coiffure, gives attention to our
teeth, scrutinizes our mouth, hair and skin to detect any evidence
of failing health, and sends us on our way refreshed, encouraged or
warned.  Often his friend the tailor or dressmaker will call in
while he deals with us to consider our general bravery and
improvement, and suggest variations of our exercise and habits.

The old distributing trades have lost their sharp demarcation from
the advisory professions.  They are in touch with the guardians of
development who have replaced the schoolmasters, nurses,
governesses, tutors and so forth of the old time, and with the
general advisers who have taken on the tasks of the family
solicitor, religious minister, private confessor and general
practitioner of the past.  These advisory and directive professions
probably number two or three times as big a proportion of the whole
population as the lawyers, educationists and doctors of the
nineteenth century.  They merge again into another stratum, the
specialist teachers, concerned with developing and imparting skills
and building up and maintaining the common ideology.  This class
again passes by insensible degrees into the worlds of technical
work, art, literature and scientific research.

The primary producers and elaborators of material, our
agriculturalists, engineers, chemists, transport men and industrial
directors, also do their work because they like doing it.  It
satisfies them.  They like their materials, they like their
difficulties, they like the order of their days.  In spite of an
increasing output per head of population and an increasing variety
and elaboration of the things we use, socially or individually, the
numerical proportion of this section of the human population does
not increase.  Efficiency still outruns need and desire.  The two
and a half years of compulsory public service, which is an integral
part of our education, supplies a larger and larger proportion of
such toil as is still unavoidable.

This release of human energy from primary needs is a process that
seems likely to continue indefinitely.  And all the forces that
have made our world-wide social life and keep it going direct that
released energy towards the achievement of fresh knowledge and the
accumulation and rendering of fresh experience.  There is a
continual sublimation of interest.  Man becomes more curious, more
excited, more daring, skilful, and pleasantly occupied every year.
The more we learn of the possibilities of our world and the
possibilities of ourselves, the richer, we learn, is our
inheritance.  This planet, which seemed so stern a mother to
mankind, is discovered to be inexhaustible in its bounty.  And the
greatest discovery man has made has been the discovery of himself.
Leonardo da Vinci with his immense breadth of vision, his creative
fervour, his curiosity, his power of intensive work, was the
precursor of the ordinary man, as the world is now producing him.

9.  A New Phase in the History of Life

From the point of view of the ecologist the establishment of the
Modern State marks an epoch in biological history.  It has been an
adaptation, none too soon, of our species to changing conditions
that must otherwise have destroyed it.  The immense developments
and disasters of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries show us
mankind scrambling on the verge of irreparable disaster.

The infinite toil of millions of tormented brains, the devotion and
persistence of countless forgotten devotees, gave form and clear
purpose in time to what were at first mere flounderings and
clutchings towards safety.  The threatened race did not fall back
into that abyss of extinction which has swallowed up so many of the
bolder experiments of life.  In pain and uncertainty it clambered
past its supreme danger phase, and now it has struggled to such a
level of assurance, understanding and safety as no living substance
has ever attained before.

By means of education and social discipline the normal human
individual today acquires characteristics without which his
continued existence would be impossible.  In the future, as the
obscurer processes of selection are accelerated and directed by
eugenic effort, these acquired characteristics will be incorporated
with his inherent nature, and his educational energy will be
released for further adaptations.  He will become generation by
generation a new species, differing more widely from that weedy,
tragic, pathetic, cruel, fantastic, absurd and sometimes sheerly
horrible being who christened himself in a mood of oafish arrogance
Homo sapiens.

The differences of the coming man from the man of the past will be
multitudinous and intricate, but certain broad lines of comparison
appear already.  We have noted already the difference in the age
cycle between ourselves and our ancestors, which has prolonged the
youthful phase and shifted on the valid years towards the thirty-
five to eighty period, and we have cited also the completer
physical development, due to the release of vital energy from the
task of resisting various infections, poisons and morbidities of
growth.  We are probably only in the beginning of very much more
considerable physical modification.  The æsthetic ideals of the
past are likely to play a large part in determining the direction
in which these modifications will take us.  But these physical
developments, important though they must ultimately be, are as yet
much less important than the changes in moral form that are
manifestly in progress.  A brief consideration of these will make a
fitting conclusion to this general outline of history.

Essentially they constitute a readjustment of the individual to the
racial life.  When we go back in time for a million years or so we
find our ancestor species in a phase of almost fundamental
individualism.  Except where sexual life and the instinct system to
protect offspring came in, the subman shifted for himself.  He had
no associates in the food hunt, no allies for defence.  He was as
solitary an animal as the tiger.  From that he passed through
stages of increasing sociability.  The onset of these stages was
made practicable by the retention of immature characteristics into
adult life.  The same thing is happening to the remnant of the
lions today.  They remain cubbish and friendly now to a much later
age than they did a few-score thousand years ago.  Man passed
through a stage when he was as sociable as a modern lion and on to
a phase when he was as sociable as a wolf or hunting dog.

But he did not rest at that.  All the conditions of his life
favoured the formation of still-larger communities and still-closer
interdependence.  He became a cultivator, an economic animal, and
his communities expanded to thousands and scores of thousands of
individuals held together by mutual service.  He produced language
and religion to bind the will and activities of these aggregations
into an effective common policy.  The history of mankind, as we
unfold it to the contemporary student, is a story of ever
increasing communication and ever increasing interdependence.
Insensibly the material side of individual freedom was modified
into unavoidable cooperation with the community.

Stress must be laid upon that word material.  The physical
subjugation and socialization of the human animal far outran his
moral subjection.  The history of mankind is also a history of
education and compulsion.  It is a record of give and take.  Man
almost up to the present day has remained at heart still the early
savage, caring only for himself, for his sexual life, and, during
the few years of their helplessness, his children.  He has been
willing to associate for aggression or for defence, but only very
reluctantly for a common happiness.  He has had to barter his
freedom for the advantages of collective action, but he has done so
against the grain, needing persuasion, pressure and helpful

The history of mankind has had to be very largely the history
of a succession of religious and emotional inventions and
reconstructions, to override the inherent distaste in the
individual for subordination and self-sacrifice.  At every
opportunity the individual has sought to recover its personal
initiatives.  Its egotism has battled instinctively of necessity to
get the best of the bargain and receive with as little giving as

Man's natural self struggles to do that now as strongly as
ever he did.  But he struggles now in a better light and more
intelligently; he realizes what is impossible, and the long
conflict of individualism with society has arrived at a rational
compromise.  We have learnt how to catch and domesticate the ego at
an early stage and train it for purposes greater than itself.

What has happened during the past three and a half centuries to the
human consciousness has been a sublimation of individuality.  That
phase is the quintessence of modern history.  A large part of the
commonplace life of man, the food-hunt, the shelter-hunt, the
safety-hunt, has been lifted out of the individual sphere and
socialized for ever.  To that the human egotism has given its
assent perforce.  It has abandoned gambling and profit-seeking and
all the wilder claims of property.  It has ceased altogether to
snatch, scramble and oust for material ends.  And the common man
has also been deprived of any weapons for his ready combativeness
and of any liberty in its release.  Nowadays even children do not
fight each other.  Gentleness in difference has become our second

All that part of man's life and interests has been socialized
entirely against his natural disposition in the matter.  In all
those concerns the whole race is now confluent; it is becoming as
much a colonial organism as any branching coral or polyp, though
the ties that link us are not fleshly bands, but infinitely elastic
and invisible and subtle.  In the later chapters of this world
history we have examined and displayed, with particular attention
because of its culminating character, the essential individualism
of the World War process, and we have told how, with what
difficulty and after what scourgings, our race has been brought to
its present phase of organized self-control.  This present phase is
the victory of creative power working through the individualities
of a more intelligent minority, in the face of universal confusion,
taking indeed advantage of that confusion to inaugurate our present
order.  That wilful minority has opened the gates to a power and
abundance of existence beyond all former dreaming.  But our Modern
State has neither absorbed nor destroyed individuality, which
now, accepting the necessary restrictions upon its material
aggressiveness, resumes at every opportunity its freedom and
enterprise upon a higher level of life.

The individuality deprived, or relieved if you will, of its primary
instinctive preoccupations with getting and keeping, disillusioned
about precedence, personal display and suchlike barbaric vanities,
growing continually and swiftly in wisdom and knowledge, has now to
go further afield to find itself.  No longer a self-sufficient
being, at war with all its kind, it has become a responsible part
of a species.  It has become an experiment in feeling, knowing,
making and response.

The body of mankind is now one single organism of nearly two
thousand five hundred million persons, and the individual
differences of every one of these persons is like an exploring
tentacle thrust out to test and learn, to savour life in its
fullness and bring in new experiences for the common stock.  We are
all members of one body.*  Only in the dimmest analogy has anything
of this sort happened in the universe as we knew it before.  Our
sense of our individual difference makes our realization of our
common being more acute.  We work, we think, we explore, we
dispute, we take risks and suffer--for there seems no end to the
difficult and dangerous adventures individual men and women may
attempt; and more and more plain does it become to us that it is
not our little selves, but Man the Undying who achieves these
things through us.

* This was the phrase of that interesting mystic St. Paul (Saul) of
Tarsus (2-62 C.E.  Epistles with analysis and commentary by Hirsch
and Potter in the Historical Reprints: Development of Ideas
Series), who did so much to pervert and enlarge the simpler
cosmopolitan fraternalism of Jesus of Nazareth (-4-30 C.E.)
before it was finally overwhelmed and lost in the sacrificial
sacerdotalism of formal Christianity.  For a brief period before it
relapsed the Pauline cult had a curious flavour of Modern State
feeling.  There was, however, a politic disingenuousness in Paul
which betrayed his undeniable intellectual power.  He was ambiguous
about blood sacrifices, immortality, private property and slavery,
to the eternal injury of the Christian movement.  It was completely
prostituted to usage before the first century was over.  See Ivan
Mackenzie, General Elements of Religion 2103.  Mackenzie has an
excellent chapter on the anticipation of Modern State ideas by
ancient writers, and is particularly interesting on the Superior
Person (Generalized or Super Man) of Confucius (551-478 B.C.) and
the City of God of St. Augustine (354-430).

As the slower processes of heredity seize upon and confirm these
social adaptations, as the confluence of wills supersedes
individual motives and loses its present factors of artificiality,
the history of life will pass into a new phase, a phase with a
common consciousness and a common will.  We in our time are still
rising towards the crest of that transition.  And when that crest
is attained what grandeur of life may not open out to Man!  Eye
hath not seen, nor ear heard; nor hath it entered into the mind of
man to conceive. . . .  For now we see as in a glass darkly. . . .

At this point Raven's copied-out manuscript comes to an end--it
seems to me a little abruptly.  But it is the end; he has written
the word "Finis" here.  I will add only one word or so by way of
comment.  I have called that manuscript a dream book.  Was it a
dream book or was it indeed, as he declared and believed it to be,
a vision of the shape of things to come?  Or--there is a third
possibility.  As dreaming, this book is far too coherent; as
vision, incredulity creeps in.  But was Raven, too busily employed
and too obsessed by the sense of urgency to embark upon a detailed
analysis of world development, was he trying nevertheless to sketch
out in this fantastic form a general thesis at least about the
condition of things to come?  If this is neither a dream book nor a
Sibylline history, then it is a theory of world revolution.
Plainly the thesis is that history must now continue to be a string
of accidents with an increasingly disastrous trend until a
comprehensive faith in the modernized World-State, socialistic,
cosmopolitan and creative, takes hold of the human imagination.
When the existing governments and ruling theories of life, the
decaying religious and the decaying political forms of to-day, have
sufficiently lost prestige through failure and catastrophe, then
and then only will world-wide reconstruction be possible.  And it
must needs be the work, first of all, of an aggressive order of
religiously devoted men and women who will try out and establish
and impose a new pattern of living upon our race.


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