Instead Of A Book, By A Man Too Busy To Write One

By Benjamin R. Tucker (1897)

Entry 2622


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Untitled Anarchism Instead Of A Book, By A Man Too Busy To Write One

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(1854 - 1939)

American Father of Individualist Anarchism

: An individualist Anarchist, Tucker was a person of intellect rather than of action, focusing on the development of his ideas and on the publication of books and journals, especially the journal Liberty: Not the Daughter but the Mother of Order... (From: Anarchy Archives.)
• "The evil to which this [tariff] monopoly gives rise might more properly be called misusury than usury, because it compels labor to pay, not exactly for the use of capital, but rather for the misuse of capital." (From: "State Socialism and Anarchism," by Benjamin R. Tu....)
• "But although, viewing the divine hierarchy as a contradiction of Anarchy, they do not believe in it, the Anarchists none the less firmly believe in the liberty to believe in it. Any denial of religious freedom they squarely oppose." (From: "State Socialism and Anarchism," by Benjamin R. Tu....)
• "...Anarchism, which may be described as the doctrine that all the affairs of men should be managed by individuals or voluntary associations, and that the State should be abolished." (From: "State Socialism and Anarchism," by Benjamin R. Tu....)


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Dedication For always in thine eyes, O Liberty! Shines that high light whereby the world is saved; And though thou slay us, we will trust in thee. --John Hay. In abolishing rent and interest, the last vestiges of old-time slavery, the Revolution abolishes at one stroke the sword of the executioner, the seal of the magistrate, the club of the policeman, the gauge of the exciseman, the erasing-knife of the department clerk, all those insignia of Politics, which young Liberty grinds beneath her heel. --Proudhon. To the Memory of My Old Friend and Master Josiah Warren Whose Teachings were My First Source of Light I Gratefully Dedicate this Volume (From:
Preface Instead of a book! I hear the reader exclaim, as he picks up this volume and glances at its title; why, it is is a book. To all appearance, yes; essentially, no. It is, to be sure, an assemblage within a cover of printed sheets consecutively numbered; but this alone does not constitute a book. A book, properly speaking, is first of all a thing of unity and symmetry, of order and finish; it is a literary structure, each part of which is subordinated to the whole and created for it. To satisfy such a standard this volume does not pretend; it is not a structure, but an afterthought, a more or less coherent arrangement, each part of which was created almost without reference to any other. Yet not quite so, after all; otherwise even t... (From:
State Socialism and Anarchism[1] How Far They Agree, And Wherein They Differ Probably no agitation has ever attained the magnitude, either in the number of its recruits or the area of its influence, which has been attained by Modern Socialism, and at the same time been so little understood and so misunderstood, not only by the hostile and the indifferent, but by the friendly, and even by the great mass of its adherents themselves. This unfortunate and highly dangerous state of things is due partly to the fact that the human relationships which this movement—if anything so chaotic can be called a movement—aims to transform, involve no special class or classes, but literally all mankind; partly to the fact that these relation... (From:
Relation of the State to the Individual.[2] [Liberty, November 15, 1890.] Ladies and Gentlemen:—Presumably the honor which you have done me in inviting me to address you to-day upon The Relation of the State to the Individual is due principally to the fact that circumstances have combined to make me somewhat conspicuous as an exponent of the theory of Modern Anarchism,—a theory which is coming to be more and more regarded as one of the few that are tenable as a basis of political and social life. In its name, then, I shall speak to you in discussing this question, which either underlies or closely touches almost every practical problem that confronts this generation. The future of the tariff, of taxation, of finance, of pro... (From:
Our Purpose.[3] [Liberty, August 6, 1881.] Liberty enters the field of journalism to speak for herself because she finds no one willing to speak for her. She hears no voice that always champions her; she knows no pen that always writes in her defense; she sees no hand that is always lifted to avenge her wrongs or vindicate her rights. Many claim to speak in her name, but few really understand her. Still fewer have the courage and the opportunity to consistently fight for her. Her battle, then, is her own to wage and win. She accepts it fearlessly and with a determined spirit.(3 ¶ 1) Her foe, Authority, takes many shapes, but, broadly speaking, her enemies divide themselves into three classes: (From:
Contract Or Organism, What’s That To Us? [Liberty, July 30, 1887.] Some very interesting and valuable discussion is going on in the London Jus concerning the question of compulsory versus voluntary taxation. In the issue of June 17 there is a communication from F. W. Read, in which the following passage occurs:(4 ¶ 1) The voluntary taxation proposal really means the dissolution of the State into its constituent atoms, and leaving them to recombine in some way or no way, just as it may happen. There would be nothing to prevent the existence of five or six States in England, and members of all these States might be living in the same house! The prop (From:
The Nature of the State [Liberty, October 22, 1887.] Below is reprinted from the London Jus the reply of F. W. Read to the editorial in No. 104 of Liberty, entitled Contract or Organism, What’s That to Us?.(5 ¶ 1) To the Editor of Jus:(5 ¶ 2) Sir,—Referring to Mr. Tucker’s criticisms on my letters in Jus dealing with Voluntary Taxation, the principle of a State organism seems to be at the bottom of th econtroversy. I will therefore deal with that first, although it comes last in Mr. Tucker’s article. Mr. Tucker asks whether the St (From:
A Misinterpretation of Anarchism [Liberty, March 8, 1890.] One of the most interesting papers that come to this office is the Personal Rights Journal of London. Largely written by men like J. H. Levy and Wordsworth Donisthorpe, it could not be otherwise. Virtually it champions the same political faith that finds an advocate in Liberty. It means by individualism what Liberty means by Anarchism. That it does not realize this fact, and that it assumes Anarchism to be something other than complete individualism, is the principal difference between us. This misunderstanding of Anarchism is very clearly and cleverly exhibited in a passage which I copy from a keen and thought-provoking lecture on The Outcome of Individualism, delivered (From:
Mr. Levy’s Maximum [Liberty, November 1, 1890.] Whatever else Anarchism may mean, it means that State coercion of peaceable citizens, into cooperation in restraining the activity of Bill Sikes, is to be condemned and ought to be abolished. Anarchism implies the right of an individual to stand aside and see a man murdered or a woman raped. It implies the right of the would-be passive accomplice of aggression to escape all coercion. It is true the Anarchist may voluntarily cooperate to check aggression; but also he may not. Quâ Anarchist, he is within his right in withholding such cooperation, in leaving others to bear the burden of resistance to aggression, or in leaving the aggressor to triumph unchecked. Individualism, on ... (From:
Resistance to Taxation [Liberty, March 26, 1887.] To the Editor of Liberty:(8 ¶ 1) I have lately been involved in several discussions leading out of your refusal to pay your poll-tax, and I would like to get from you your reasons, so far as they are public property, for that action. It seems to me that any good object could have been better and more easily obtained by compromising with the law, except the object of propagandism, and that in attaining that object you were going beyond the right into paths where you could not bid any one follow who was trying to live square with the truth, so far as we may know it.(8 ¶ 2) (From:
A Puppet For a God [Liberty, April 9, 1887.] To the Editor of Liberty:(9 ¶ 1) Please accept my thanks for your candid answer to my letter of November 11, 1886. It contains, however, some points which do not seem to me conclusive. The first position to which I object is your statement that voluntary association necessarily involves the right of secession; hereby you deny the right of any people to combine on a constitution which denies that right of secession, and in doing so attempt to force upon them your own idea of right. You assume the case of a new State attempting to impose its laws upon a former settler in the country, and say that they have no right to do so; I agree with you, but have I (From:
Mr. Perrine’s Difficulties [Liberty, July 16, 1887.] To the Editor of Liberty:(10 ¶ 1) I suppose I should feel completely swamped by the great waves of satire which have rolled over my head from all directions but the front.(10 ¶ 2) Still I feel able to lift my hand, and make the motion of scissors.(10 ¶ 3) I have had the fallacy of a part of my argument so clearly pointed out to me by another than Liberty that I did not think it would be necessary for its editor to go so far around my position as to deny the sanctity of contract in order (From:
Where We Stand [Liberty, August 19. 1882.] Mr. B. W. Ball writes the best articles that appear in the Index, which is not saying much, and among the best that appear in any of the weeklies, which is saying a good deal. We were the more gratified, therefore, to find him treating in a recent number the incipient, but increasing, opposition to the existence of the State. He at least is clear-sighted enough not to underrate the importance of the advent into social and political agitation of so straightforward, consistent, unterrified, determined, and, withal, philosophically rooted a factor as modern Anarchism, although his editorial chief, Mr. Underwood, declares that the issue which the Anarchists present admits of no discussion.(11 &par... (From:
Tu-Whit! Tu-Whoo! [Liberty, October 24, 1885.] To the editor of Liberty:(12 ¶ 1) Will you give direct and explicit answers to the following questions?(12 ¶ 2) I certainly will, wherever the questions are direct and explicit.(12 ¶ 3) Does Anarchism recognize the right of one individual or any number of individuals to determine what course of action is just or unjust for others?(12 ¶ 4) Yes, if by the word unjust is meant invasive; otherwise, no. Anarchis (From:
Rights and Duties Under Anarchy. [Liberty, December 31, 1887.] Old readers of this paper will remember the appearance in its columns, about two years ago, of a series of questions propounded by the writer of the following letter and accompanied by editorial answers. To-day my interrogator questions me further; this time, however, no longer as a confident combatant, but as an earnest inquirer. As I replied to him then according to his pugnacity, so I reply to him now according to his friendliness.(13 ¶ 1) To the Editor of Liberty:(13 ¶ 2) Will you please insert the following questions in your paper with your answers theret (From:
More Questions. [Liberty, January 28, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(14 ¶ 1) I thank you for your courteous treatment of my questions in your issue of December 31, and as you express a willingness in this direction, I will follow in the same line, and trust you will still think my questions are pertinent and proper.(14 ¶ 2) Do you think property rights can inhere in anything not produced by the labor or aid of man?(14 ¶ 3) You say, Anarchism being neither more nor less than the principle of equal liberty, etc. Now, if government were so (From:
Mr. Blodgett’s Final Question. [Liberty, April 28, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(15 ¶ 1) I have one more question, and it does not occur to me now that I shall want to trouble you further in this way.(15 ¶ 2) You say: I do not believe in any inherent right of property. Property is a social convention.(15 ¶ 3) Now, does Anarchism recognize the propriety of compelling individuals to regard social conventionalities?(15 ¶ 4) S. Blodgett. Grahamville, Florida. (From:
Trying to Be and Not to Be. [Liberty, June 9, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(16 ¶ 1) I do not write this with the idea that you will publish it, for the tardiness with which you inserted my last question indicates that you do not care for any more of me in your paper. You are too good a reasoner to not know that, if it is proper to interfere to compel people to regard one social convention, it is not improper to force another, or all, providing there is any satisfaction in doing so. If there are no natural rights, there is no occasion for conscientious or other scruples, providing the power exists. Therefore, therei s no guarantee that there will be even as m (From:
Mr. Blodgett’s Explanation [Liberty, Aug. 4, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(17 ¶ 1) I was honest in the questions I asked concerning the foundation on which Anarchism is aiming to build. I had thought considerably on the matter, and read in Liberty as it came in my way, and while the ideal was fair to look upon, it seemed to me one must have a loose method of reasoning to suppose its practical realization possible. I also found that those of my acquaintance who favored the idea reasoned from the standpoint of an imaginary, instead of a real, humanity, which left their arguments on the subject of no practical value.(17 ¶ 2) (From:
A Plea for Non-Resistance [Liberty, February 11, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(18 ¶ 1) I must take exception to the teaching that the infliction of injury upon aggressors is compatible with the principle of equal liberty to all.(18 ¶ 2) First, with an argument which is no argument, yet which has its force to those who have observed the growth of new ideas in their own minds: how there comes first a revulsion against what is, then strong sentiment in favor of the opposite, and last only, and often not then until long after, perhaps never, comes the possibility of rational justification of the sentiment.(18 ¶ 3) (From:
Liberty and Aggression [Liberty, February 2, 1889.] My dear Mr. Tucker:(19 ¶ 1) Liberty has done me a great service in carrying me from the metaphysical speculations in which I was formerly interested into a vein of practical thought which is more than a mere overflow of humanitarianism; which is as closely logical and strictly scientific as any other practical investigation. In spite of certain small criticisms which it would be petty to dwell upon, it is the most advanced and most intellectual paper that I have seen. I esteem it most highly.(19 ¶ 2) The particular matter upon which we have exchanged letters— (From:
Rule or Resistance—Which? [Liberty, December 26, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(20 ¶ 1) Do you think that it is accurate to say, as Liberty has said recently, that Anarchism contemplates the use of police, jails, and other forms of force? Is it not rather that Anarchism contemplates that those who wish these means of protection shall pay for them themselves; while those who prefer other means shall only pay for what they want? (1)(20 ¶ 2) Indeed, the whole teaching that it is expedient to use force against the invader, which, as you know, I have always had doubts about, seems to me to fall when Egois (From:
The Advisability of Violence. [Liberty, January 16, 1892.] To the Editor of Liberty:(21 ¶ 1) When you preach passive resistance, is it not precisely the same thing as what is commonly called nonresistance?(21 ¶ 2) When William Penn (or was it Fox?) refused to take off his hat for the king it was certainly passive resistance; but, as he made no attempt to punch the king’s head, it is accounted as quite compatible with the Friends’ nonresistance tenets. (1)(21 ¶ 3) I do not think that any practical difference exists between passive resistanc (From:
Mr. Pentecost an Abettor of Government. [Liberty, November 14, 1891.] Because I claim and teach that Anarchism justifies the application of force to invasive men and condemns force only when applied to noninvasive men, Mr. Pentecost declares that the only difference between Anarchism on the one hand and Monarchism or Republicanism on the other is the difference between the popular conception of invasion and my own. If I were to assert that biology is the science which deals with the phenomena of living matter and excludes all phenomena of matter that is not living, and if Mr. Pentecost were to say that, assuming this, the only difference between the biological sciences and the abiological is the difference between the popular conceptio... (From:
The Philosopher of the Disembodied. [Liberty, June 8, 1889.] Connected with the Massachusetts branch of the National Woman Suffrage Association is a body of women calling itself the Boston Political Class, the object of which is the preparation of its members for the use of the ballot. On Thursday evening, May 30, this class was addressed in public by Dr. Wm. T. Harris, the Concord philosopher, on the subject of State Socialism, Anarchism, and free competition. Let me say, parenthetically, to these ladies that, if they really wish to learn how to use the ballot, they would do well to apply for instruction, not to Dr. Harris, but to ex-Supervisor Bill Simmons, or Johnny O’Brien of New York, or Senator Matthew Quay, or some leading... (From:
The Woes of an Anarchist. [Liberty, January 25, 1890.] Sir:(24 ¶ 1) That barrel-organ outside my window goes near to driving me mad (I mean madder than I was before). What am I to do? I cannot ask the State, as embodied in the person of a blue-coated gentleman at the corner, to move him on; because I have given notice that I intend to move on the said blue-coated gentleman himself. In other words, I have given the State notice to quit. Ask the organ-grinder politely to carry his melody elsewhere? I have tried that, but he only executes a double-shuffle and puts out his tongue. Ought I to rush out and punch his head? But, firstly, that might be looked upon as an invasion of his personal liberty; (From:
The Moral of Mr. Donisthorpe’s Woes [Liberty, January 25, 1890.] The reader of Mr. Donisthorpe’s article in this issue on The Woes of an Anarchist may rise from its perusal with a feeling of confusion equal to that manifested by the author, but at least he will say to himself that for genuine humor he has seldom read anything that equals it. For myself I have read it twice in manuscript and twice in proof, and still wish that I might prolong my life by the laughter that four more readings would be sure to excite. Mr. Donisthorpe ought to write a novel. But when he asks Liberty to comment on his woes and dissipate the fog he condenses around himself, I am at a loss to know how to answer him. For what is the moral of this art... (From:
L’État Est Mort; Vive L’État! [Liberty, May 24, 1890.] To the Editor of Liberty:(26 ¶ 1) Hooks-and-eyes are very useful. Hooks are useless; eyes are useless. Yet in combination they are useful. This is cooperation. Where you have division of labor and consequent differentiation of function and, eventually, of structure, there is cooperation. Certain tribes of ants have working members and fighting members. The military caste are unable to collect food, which is provided for them by the other members of the community, in return for which they devote themselves to the defense of the whole society. But for these soldiers the society would perish. If either class peris (From:
Voluntary Cooperation. [Liberty, May 24, 1890.] It is questionable whether Herbert Spencer will relish Mr. Donisthorpe’s classification of him as one of four lights of Anarchy. I think he would be justified in putting in a disclaimer. No doubt Anarchy is immeasurably indebted to Mr. Spencer for a phenomenally clear exposition of its bottom truths. But he entertains heresies on the very questions which Mr. Donisthorpe raises that debar him from recognition as an Anarchist. His belief in compulsory taxation and his acceptance of the majority principle, not as a temporary necessity, but as permanently warranted within a certain sphere, show him to be unfaithful to his principle of equal liberty, as Mr. Donisthorpe has convincingly d... (From:
L’État, C’Est L’Ennemi. [Liberty, February 26, 1887.] Dear Tucker:(28 ¶ 1) Since the occasion when you so arbitrarily side-tracked me in the editorial columns of Liberty,[7] certain notions of self-respect in connection with your attitude towards me have bid me pause whenever I attempted to state my present position, and wherein I feel that I have outgrown the partial methods by which you seek to deal with existing social maladjustments. I did send a communication to the Truth Seeker, but Macdonald, though he had just published your communication, chose to even out-do your side-tracking method of discipline by dumping (From:
A Libertarian’s Pet Despotisms. [Liberty, January 1, 1887.] There is nothing any better than Liberty and nothing any worse than despotism, be it the theological despotism of the skies, the theocratic despotism of kings, or the democratic despotism of majorities; and the labor reformer who starts out to combat the despotism of capital with other despotism no better lacks the only power to be worse than the foe he encounters. These are the words of my brother Pinney of the Winsted Press, Protectionist and Greenbacker,—that is, a man who combats the despotism of capital with that despotism which denies the liberty to buy foreign goods untaxed and that despotism which denies the liberty to issue notes to circulate as currency. ... (From:
Defensive Despotism. [Liberty, January 22, 1887.] Mr. Pinney, editor of an exceedingly bright paper, the Winsted Press, recently combated prohibition in the name of Liberty. Thereupon I showed him that his argument was equally good against his own advocacy of a tariff on imports and an exclusive government currency. Carefully avoiding any allusion to the analogy, Mr. Pinney now rejoins: In brief, we are despotic because we believe it our right to defend ourselves from foreign invaders on the one side and wild-cat swindlers on the other. Yes, just as despotic as the prohibitionists who believe it is their right to defend themselves from drunkards and rumsellers. In another column of the same issue of the Press I find a reference to a lo... (From:
Still in the Procrustean Bed. [Liberty, February 12, 1887.] Continuing his controversy with me regarding the logic of the principle of liberty, Mr. Pinney of the Winsted Press says:(31 ¶ 1) There is no analogy between prohibition and the tariff; the tariff prohibits no man from indulging his desire to trade where he pleases. It is simply a tax. It is slightly analogous to a license tax for the privilege of selling liquor in a given territory, but prohibition, in theory if not in practice, is an entirely different matter.(31 ¶ 2) This is a distinction without a difference. The so-called prohibitory liquor la (From:
Pinney Struggling with Procrustes. [Liberty, March 12, 1887.] It is the habit of the wild Westerner, whenever he cannot answer a Bostonian’s arguments, to string long words into long sentences in mockery of certain fancied peculiarities of the Boston mind. Editor Pinney of the Winsted Press is not exactly a wild Westerner, but he lives just far enough beyond the confines of Massachusetts to enable him to resort to this device in order to obscure the otherwise obvious necessity of meeting me on reason’s ground. His last reply to me fruitlessly fills two-thirds of one of his long columns with the sort of bunkum referred to, whereas that amount of space, duly applied to solid argument, might have sufficed to show one of us in ... (From:
A Back Town Heard From. [Liberty, August 13, 1887.] The Winsted Press makes a long leader to ridicule the Anarchists for favoring private enterprise in the letter-carrying business. It grounds its ridicule on two claims,—first, that private enterprise would charge high rates of postage, and, second, that it would not furnish transportation to out-of-the-way points. An indisputable fact has frequently been cited in Liberty which instantly and utterly overthrows both of these claims. Its frequent citation, however, has had no effect upon the believers in a government postal monopoly. I do not expect another repetition to produce any effect upon the Winsted Press; still I shall try it.(33 ¶ 1) (From:
In Form a Reply, in Reality a Surrender. [Liberty, September 10, 1887.] Appreciating the necessity of at least seeming to meet the indisputable fact which I opposed to its championship of government postal monopoly, the Winsted Press presents the following ghost of an answer, which may be as convincing to the victims of political superstition as most materializations are to the victims of religious superstition, but which, like those materializations, is so imperceptible to the touch of the hard-headed investigator that, when he puts his hand upon it, he does not find it there.(34 ¶ 1) The single instance of Wells, Fargo & Co., cited by B. R. Tucker to prove the advan (From:
Fool Voters and Fool Editors. [Liberty, August 4, 1888.] Uncle Sam carries one hundred pounds of newspapers two thousand miles for two dollars, and still pays the railroad three times too much for mail service. An express company would charge twenty dollars for the same service; yet some people don’t know why all express stockholders are millionaires and the people getting poorer. In fact, some people don’t know anything at all and don’t want to. It is very unfortunate that such people have votes. —The Anti-Monopolist.(35 ¶ 1) Yes, Uncle Sam carries one hundred pounds of newspapers two thousand miles, not for two dollars, but for one dollar, pays the r (From:
Ergo and Presto! [Liberty, July 7, 1888.] In Henry George may be seen a pronounced type of the not uncommon combination of philosopher and juggler. He possesses in a marked degree the faculty of luminous exposition of a fundamental principle, but this faculty he supplements with another no less developed,—that of so obscuring the connection between his fundamental principle and the false applications thereof which he attempts that only a mind accustomed to analysis can detect the flaw and the fraud. We see this in the numerous instances in which he has made a magnificent defense of the principle of individual liberty in theory, only to straightway deny it in practice, while at the same time palming off his denial upon an admiring... (From:
The Right of Ownership. [Liberty, August 2, 1890.] To the Editor of Liberty:(37 ¶ 1) Will you permit me to ask you for the definition, from an Anarchistic standpoint, of the Right of Ownership? What do you mean to convey when you say that a certain thing belongs to a certain person?(37 ¶ 2) Before directing my attention to the study of the social question, I had a rather confused notion of the meaning of this term. Ownership appeared to me a kind of amalgamation of wealth with the individual. This conception could, of course, not be sustained in an analysis of the social question and the distribution of wealth. For some (From:
Individual Sovereignty Our Goal. [Liberty, June 7, 1890.] In an unsigned article in the Open Court (written, I suspect by the editor) I find the following:(38 ¶ 1) When Anarchists teach the sovereignty of the individual, we have to inform them that society is an organized whole. The individual is what he is through the community only, and he must obey the laws that govern the growth of communal life. The more voluntary this obedience is, the better it is for the community as well as for the individual himself. But if the individual does not voluntarily obey the laws of the community, society has a right to enforce them. There is no such thing as sovereignty of the individual.(38 ¶ 2) (From:
New Abolition and its Nine Demands. [Liberty, January 25, 1890.] The New Abolition Party, nominally of the United States, but really limited at present (pending by the time when it is to sweep the country like a wave) by the walls of the Individualist office at Denver, started out with eight demands; and, taken as a whole, very good demands they were. Lately it has added a ninth; just why, I don’t know, unless New Abolition was jealous of Liberalism and bound to have as many demands. This explanation seems hardly reasonable, because in the case of Liberalism nine does not seem to have proved a magic number for demand purposes. However this may be, it is certain that the ninth demand is a square contradiction of some of the most i... (From:
Compulsory Education Not Anarchistic. [Liberty, August 6, 1892.] A public school teacher of my acquaintance, much interested in Anarchism and almost a convert thereto, finds himself under the necessity of considering the question of compulsory education from a new standpoint, and is puzzled by it. In his quandary he submits to me the following questions:(40 ¶ 1) If a parent starves, tortures, or mutilates his child, thus actively aggressing upon it to its injury, is it just for other members of the group to interfere to prevent such aggression?(40 ¶ 2) If a parent neglects to provide food, shelter, and clothing for his child, thus (From:
Relations Between Parents and Children. [Liberty, September 3, 1892.] The wisdom of acts is measured by their consequences.(41 ¶ 1) The individual’s measure of consequences is proportionate to the circle of his outlook. His horizons may lie so near that he can only measure at short range. But, whether they be near or far, he can only judge of consequences as approximately or remotely touching himself. His judgment may err; his motive remains always the same, whether he be conscious of it or not.(41 ¶ 2) That motive is necessarily egoistic, since no one deliberately chooses misery when happiness is open to him. Acts always resulting either in (From:
Compulsory Education and Anarchism. [Liberty, September 3, 1892.] To the Editor of Liberty:(42 ¶ 1) While reading your lucid editorial on the above topic, some thoughts occurred to me which I venture to offer in the hope that they may serve to supplement what you have said in dealing with your scholastic friend’s well-put queries.(42 ¶ 2) I cannot help thinking that he had in mind a very un-Anarchistic condition of things when he formulated the questions. Why is compulsory education in vogue to-day? For whom is it intended? If society had been composed of well-to-do people having all the comforts, advantages, and opportun (From:
Children Under Anarchy. [Liberty, September 3, 1892.] Nearly the whole of this issue of Liberty is devoted to the important question of the status of the child under Anarchy. The long article by Clara Dixon Davidson has been in my desk, unopened, for several months. On examining it the other day, I was surprised and delighted to find that a woman had written such a bold, unprejudiced, unsentimental, and altogether rational essay on a subject which women are especially prone to treat emotionally. I am even shamed a little by the unhesitating way in which she eliminates from the problem the fancied right of the child to life. My own difficulties, I fear, have been largely due to a lingering trace of this superstition. The fact is that th... (From:
Not a Decree, but a Prophecy. [Liberty, April 28, 1888.] Have I made a mistake in my Anarchism, or has the editor of Liberty himself tripped? At any rate, I must challenge the Anarchism of one sentence in his otherwise masterful paper upon State Socialism and Anarchism. If I am wrong, I stand open to conviction. It is this: They [Anarchists] look forward to a time … when the children born of these relations shall belong exclusively to the mothers until old enough to belong to themselves.(44 ¶ 1) Now, that looks to me like an authoritarian statement that is in opposition to theoretical Anarchy, and also to nature. What is the matter with leaving the question of the control (From:
Anarchy and Rape. [Liberty, March 10, 1888.] With a plentiful sprinkling of full-face Gothic exclamation points and a series of hysterical shrieks, the Journal of United Labor, organ of pious Powderly and pure Litchman, rushes upon Liberty with the inquiry whether Anarchy asks liberty to ruin little girls. Liberty is thus questioned simply because it characterized those who petitioned the Massachusetts legislature for a further raise of the age of consent to sixteen as a bevy of impertinent and prudish women. The answer shall be direct and explicit. Anarchy does not ask liberty to ruin little girls, but it does ask liberty of sexual association with girls already several years past the age of womanhood, equipped by natur (From:
An Unfortunate Analogy. [Liberty, November 5, 1887.] A question has arisen in England whether the public have a right of access to the top of Latrigg in Keswick Vale, the public claiming such right and certain landowners denying it. It is probable that the claim of the public is good, but, as I am not informed regarding the basis of the landholders’ title in this particular case, it is not my purpose to discuss the matter. The London Jus, however, has discussed the matter, and I refer to it only to expose an inconsistency into which that journal has fallen. It seems that Mr. Plimsoll, who champions the claim of the public, has made this declaration:(46 ¶ 1) What Parliament has given Parliament can take away. (From:
The Boycott and its Limit. [Liberty, December 3, 1887.] London Jus does not see clearly in the matter of boycotting. Every man, it says, has a perfect right to refuse to hold intercourse with any other man or class from whom he chooses to keep aloof. But where does liberty come in when several persons conspire together to put pressure upon another to induce or coerce him (by threats expressed or implied) to refrain also from intercourse with the boycotted man? It is not that the boycotted man has grounds of legal complaint against those who voluntarily put him in coventry. His complaint is against those who compel (under whatsoever sanction) third persons to do likewise. Surely the distinction is specific. Specific, yes, but not ration... (From:
A Case Where Discussion Convinced. [Liberty, February 11, 1887.] One word as to boycotting itself. Jus was some weeks ago taken to task by the Boston Liberty for incorrectly defining the term. The line of distinction, says Liberty, does not run in the direction which Jus tries to give it. Its course does not lie between the second person and a third person, but between the threats of invasion and the threats of ostracism by which either the second or a third person is coerced or induced. All boycotting, no matter of what person, consists either in the utterance of a threat or its execution. A man has a right to threaten what he has a right to execute. The boundary-line of justifiable boycotting is fixed b (From:
A Spirit More Evil Than Alcohol. [Liberty, August 13, 1887.] The authority of learning, the tyranny of science, which Bakunin foresaw, deprecated, and denounced, never found blunter expression than in an article by T. B. Wakeman in the August number of the Freethinkers’ Magazine in which the writer endeavors to prove, on scientific grounds alone, that alcohol is an evil, a poison that ought never to be taken into the human system. My knowledge of chemistry and physiology is too limited to enable me to judge of the scientific soundness of the attempted demonstration; but I do know that it is admirably well written, wonderfully attractive, powerfully plausible, important if true, and therefore worthy of answer by those who alone ar... (From:
A Word About Capital Punishment. [Liberty, August 30, 1890.] Since the execution of Kemmler, I have seen it stated repeatedly in the press, and especially in the reform press, and even in the Anarchistic press, that the execution was a murder. I have also seen it stated that capital punishment is murder in its worst form. I should like to know upon what principle of human society these assertions are based and justified.(50 ¶ 1) If they are based on the principle that punishment inflicted by a compulsory institution which manufactures the criminals is worse than the crime punished, I can understand them and in some degree sympathize with them. But in that case I cannot see why capital punishment should be singled o (From:
No Place for a Promise. [Liberty, November 12, 1892.] A Promise, according to the common acceptation of the term, is a binding declaration made by one person to another to do, or not to do, a certain act at some future time. According to this definition, there can, I think, be no place for a promise in a harmonious progressive world. Promises and progress are incompatible, unless all the parties are, at all times, as free to break them as they were to make them; and this admission eliminates the binding element, and, therefore, destroys the popular meaning of a promise.(51 ¶ 1) In a progressive world we know more to-morrow than we know to-day. Also harmony implies absence of (From:
On Picket Duty. Bullion thinks that civilization consists in teaching men to govern themselves and then letting them do it. A very slight change suffices to make this stupid statement an entirely accurate one, after which it would read: Civilization consists in teaching men to govern themselves by letting them do it.—Liberty, August 20, 1881.(52 ¶ 1) People in general, and the governmental Socialists in particular, think they see a new argument in favor of their beloved State in the assistance which it is rendering to the suffering and starving victims of the Mississippi inundation. Well, such work is better than forging new chains to keep the people in subjection, we allow; but it is not worth the price that is paid for it. ... (From:
Who is the Somebody? [Liberty, August 6, 1881.] Somebody gets the surplus wealth that labor produces and does not consume. Who is the Somebody? Such is the problem recently posited in the editorial columns of the New York Truth. Substantially the same question has been asked a great many times before, but, as might have been expected, this new form of putting it has created no small hubbub. Truth’s columns are full of it; other journals are taking it up; clubs are organizing to discuss it; the people are thinking about it; students are pondering over it. For it is a most momentous question. A correct answer to it is unquestionably the first step in the settlement of the appalling problem of poverty, intemperance, ignorance, and c... (From:
Reform Made Ridiculous. [Liberty, September 17, 1881.] One of the most noteworthy of Thomas Jefferson’s sayings was that he had rather live under newspapers without a government than under a government without newspapers. The Czar of Russia proposes to make this alternative unnecessary by establishing a national weekly journal to be distributed gratuitously in every village, whose carefully-concocted news paragraphs, severely-sifted political items, and rose-tinted editorials shall be read aloud on Sundays by designated officials to the assembled multitudes. This absurd proposal is no more absurd than that of a delegate to the State Convention of the Massachusetts Greenbackers, who desired that the government should add to its fu... (From:
A Defense of Capital. [Liberty, October 1, 1881.] My Dear Mr. Tucker:(55 ¶ 1) Why do you grieve at a difference of opinion between us? Am I to be bribed to agree with a valued friend by the fear that he will grieve if I do not? Liberty, I should say, imposes no such burden on freedom of thought, but rather rejoices in its fullest exercise.(55 ¶ 2) I did not know that the no-profit theory had become so well established, or so generally accepted, as to render ridiculous any proposition not based upon it.(55 ¶ 3) Yet that is the only point I understand you to (From:
The Position of William. [From Ruskin’s Letters to British Workmen.] What you call wages, practically, is the quantity of food which the possessor of the land gives you to work for him. There is, finally, no capital but that. If all the money of all the capitalists in the whole world were destroyed — the notes and bills burnt, the gold irrecoverably buried, and all the machines and apparatus of manufacture crushed, by a mistake in signals, in one catastrophe — and nothing remained but the land, with its animals and vegetables, and buildings for shelter — the poorer population would be very little worse off than they are at this instant; and their labor, instead of being limited by the destruction, would be gre... (From:
Capital’s Claim to Increase. [Liberty, October 1, 1881.] Liberty’s strictures, in her last issue, upon the proposal of the Massachusetts Greenbackers, adopted at their Worcester convention, to ask the legislature to compel all corporations to distribute their profits in excess of six percent among the employes in proportion to their wages has stirred up Mr. J. M. L. Babcock, the author of that singular project, to a defense of it. And in defending it against Liberty, he is obliged to do so in behalf of capital. It seems a little odd to find this long-time defender of the rights of labor in the rôle of champion of the claims of capital; but we remember that he is one who follows the lead of justice as he sees i (From:
A Baseless Charge. [Liberty, October 15, 1881.] My Dear Mr. Tucker:(58 ¶ 1) It is entirely immaterial in this discussion whether my position is odd or otherwise. The question at issue must be settled, if settled at all, on its own merits; and no prejudice either for or against capital can affect the argument. Let us burden it with no irrelevant matter.(58 ¶ 2) My question was simply this: Is a man who loans a plow entitled in equity to compensation for its use; and if not, why not?(58 ¶ 3) This question (I say it with all respect) you evade. But, until it is answe (From:
Another Answer to Mr. Babcock [Liberty, November 12, 1881.] Mr. Tucker:(59 ¶ 1) In your issue of October 15, I notice a question by J. M. L. Babcock, and, although you have answered it, yet I beg to give my answer. The question is this: Is a man who loans a plow entitled in equity to compensation for its use? My answer is, Yes. Now, then, what of it? Does that make something for nothing right? Let us see. We must take it for granted that the loaning of the plow was a good business transaction. Such being the case, the man who borrows the plow must give good security that he will return the plow and pay for what he wears out. He must have the wealth or the credit to make the owner of (From:
Attention, Apex! [Liberty, November 26, 1881.] My Dear Mr. Tucker:(60 ¶ 1) Allow me just to say that Apex is in error in supposing that he has answered my question. It appears by his own comment that his Yes means that the plow-lender is entitled to pay for the wear and tear of the plow. I asked: Is he entitled to pay for its use? I marvel that he should overlook the distinction, for I had been careful to mark it in my first statement. When the question as I put it is answered, I shall be ready to answer the other, What of it? But I am still left to the mournful impression that my question is not answered.(60 ¶ 2) Yours cordially, (From:
Usury. [Liberty, November 26, 1881.] Paying money for the use of money is a great and barbarous wrong. It is also a stupendous absurdity. No one man can use money. The use of money involves its transfer form one to another. Therefore, as no one man can use money, it cannot be right and proper for any man to pay for the use of that which he cannot use. The people do use money; consequently, they should pay whatever the money may cost.(61 ¶ 1) Money is necessarily a thing which belongs to society. This is one of the great truths of civilization which has been generally overlooked. For this whole question of the rightfulness of interest turns on the question, What is money? So long as the people sha (From:
Apex or Basis. [Liberty, December 10, 1881.] Apex says that it is a barbarism to pay interest on money. That is another way of saying that a state of society in which wealth is not universalized is barbarous, since, in our present state of evolution, those who have no capital of their own will be glad to borrow from those who have, and to pay interest for the use of the capital.(62 ¶ 1) For it is really capital that is borrowed, and not money, the latter being only the means for obtaining the former, as money would be worthless if it could not be exchanged for the capital needed. We see already that, as the loanable capital of a country increases, the rate of interest diminishes, and when (From:
The Position of William. [Liberty, October 13, 1888.] John Ruskin, in the first of his Fors Clavigera series of letters to British workmen, opened what he had to say about interest by picturing what he called the position of William. Bastiat, the French economist, had tried to show the nature of capital and interest by a little story, in which a carpenter named James made a plane in order to increase his productive power, but, having made it, was induced by a fellow-carpenter named William to lend it to him for a year in consideration of receiving a new plank at the end of that time besides a plank for the use of it. Having fulfilled these conditions at the end of the first year, William borrowed the plane again on the same terms at (From:
Economic Hodge-Podge. [Liberty, October 8, 1887.] It will be remembered that, when a correspondent of the Standard signing Morris asked Henry George one or two awkward questions regarding interest, and George tried to answer him by a silly and forced distinction between interest considered as the increase of capital and interest considered as payment for the use of legal tender, John F. Kelly sent to the Standard a crushing reply to George, which the latter refused to print, and which subsequently appeared in No. 102 of Liberty. It may also be remembered that George’s rejection of Kelly’s article was grounded on the fact that since his own reply to Morris he had received several articles on the interest quest (From:
An Unwarranted Question. [Liberty, October 18, 1890.] Auberon Herbert, in his paper, Free Life, asks me how I justify a campaign against the right of men to lend and to borrow. I answer that I do not justify such a campaign, have never attempted to justify such a campaign, do not advocate such a campaign, in fact am ardently opposed to such a campaign. In turn, I ask Mr. Herbert how he justifies his apparent attribution to me of a wish to see such a campaign instituted.(65 ¶ 1) It is true that I expect lending and borrowing to disappear, but not by any denial of the right to lend and borrow. On the contrary, I expect them to disappear by virtue of the affirmation and exercise of a right that is no (From:
An Alleged Flaw in Anarchy. [Liberty, November 29, 1890.] To the Editor of Liberty:(66 ¶ 1) I am sorry if I have misinterpreted Liberty. I have not what I wrote before me, but I do not think I could have had the slightest intention of imputing to Liberty a force campaign against interest; but I believed (am I wrong?) that I had seen both interest and rent denounced in Liberty as objectionable and opposed to the interests of society. It was to this I was referring as a moral campaign. My own position is that interest is both moral and useful, and often more than anything else a chance of a better future to workmen. If workmen would giv (From:
Shall the Transfer Papers Be Taxed? [Liberty, August 18, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty(67 ¶ 1) During the past six months I have read your paper searchingly, and greatly admire it in many respects, but as yet do not grasp your theory of interest. Can you give space for a few words to show from your standpoint the fallacy in the following ideas?(67 ¶ 2) Interest I understand to be a payment, not for money, but for capital which the money represents; that is, for the use of the accumulated wealth of the race. As that is limited, while human wants are infinite, it would appear that there will always be a demand for more than exists. T (From:
Money and Capital. [Liberty, December 1, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(68 ¶ 1) I have read attentively Mr. Westrup’s farther statement on mutual banking, but fail to see wherein he touches what is to my mind the vital point. He says that the system would not be making use of capital that belonged to some one else. Then I cannot see how it would answer its purpose. The bank itself has no capital save the pledges advanced by borrowers, and if they take out no more than they put in, they make no gain, but are merely to the expense of the transaction. On the other hand, if they do take out more, some one else must have put it in. They do not increase their wealth by using their own pro (From:
To-day’s View of Interest. [Liberty, July 26, 1890.] When I saw the word Interest at the top of an article in a recent issue of To-day, I said to myself: This looks promising; either the editor of To-day is about to remove the basis (so far as his paper is concerned) of Mr. Yarros’s vigorous criticism upon journals of its class that they fail of influence because they neglect to show that individualism will redress economic grievances, or else he has discovered some vital flaw in the Anarchist economics and is about to save us further waste of energy by showing that economic liberty will not produce the results we predict from it. Fancy my disappointment when, on reading the article, I found it made up, seven eighths, of fa... (From:
To-day’s Excellent Fooling. [Liberty, August 16, 1890.] To-day’s rejoinder to my criticism of its article on interest is chiefly remarkable as an exhibition of dust-throwing. In the art of kicking up a dust the editor is an expert. Whenever he is asked an embarrassing question, he begins to show his skill in this direction. He reminds one of the clown at the circus when stumped by the ring-master to turn a double somersault over the elephant’s back. He prances and dances, jabbers and gyrates, quotes Latin forwards and Greek backwards, declaims in the style of Dr. Johnson to the fishwife, sings algebraic formulæ to the music of the band, makes faces, makes puns, and makes an excellent fool of himself; and when at... (From:
Government and Value. [Liberty, May 16, 1891.] In a letter to the London Herald of Anarchy, Mr. J. Greevz Fisher asserts that government does not, and never can, fix the value of gold or any other commodity, and cannot even affect such value except by the slight additional demand which it creates as a consumer. It is true that government cannot fix the value of a commodity, because its influence is but one of several factors that combine to govern value. But its power to affect value is out of all proportion to the extent of its consumption. Government’s consumption of commodities is an almost infinitesimal influence upon value in comparison with its prohibitory power. One of the chief factors in the constitution of value is, as ... (From:
The Power of Government Over Values. [Liberty, June 27, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(72 ¶ 1) In reference to your remarks upon my recent contribution to the London Herald of Anarchy, dogmatism of manner must often be adopted to avoid verbosity; it is not necessarily an assumption of infallibility.(72 ¶ 2) The action of governments with regard to gold is not truly analogous in its economic effects to the prohibition of theatrical performances on Sunday. In the last-named case, or in any similar case which we may suppose, the effect is to diminish demand and to prolong or retard consumption. Thus, if we were proh (From:
Free Trade in Banking. [Liberty, July 11, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(73 ¶ 1) It is much to be regretted when Liberty is wounded in the house of her friends. This is caused by those who regard liberty as a panacea for every ill, or perhaps it would be better to say who regard the inevitable vicissitudes and inequalities of life as evil. There is no more philosophical reason for believing that all men can be equal, rich, and happy than for believing that all animals can be equal, including, of course, that they should all be equal to men.(73 ¶ 2) Freedom is exceeding fair. It is by far the most excellent way. Under li (From:
Currency and Government. [Liberty, August 15, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(74 ¶ 1) There is not the slightest analogy between allowing theaters to be consumed on Sundays and allowing silver or iron to be sold on the same terms as gold. Currency is only buying and selling; it is not consuming. The customary adoption of gold as currency and the endorsement of this custom by edict involves only a very insignificant increase in its consumption. Most other commodities waste much more than gold in the processes of stocking, marketing, and distributing from points of production to points of consumption. An admission that if government allowed an increase in the consumption of theaters it would raise (From:
The Equalization of Wage and Product. [Liberty, August 22, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(75 ¶ 1) One does not lay oneself open to a charge of disloyalty to the principles of liberty by guarding against extravagant hopes. It seems necessary to keep this mind before saying a word against any anticipations formed by ardent and able advocates of liberty like yourself. It is a hyperbole (possibly open to misconstruction) to imply that some advocates of liberty regard it as a panacea for every ill. It therefore is a great advantage when its expected benefits are clearly defined as in your issue of the 11th. You believe that under liberty a laborer’s wages will buy back his product. This is fort (From:
A False Idea of Freedom. [Liberty, February 26, 1887.] I must refer once more to the Winsted Press and its editor. It is lamentable to see so bright as Mr. Pinney wasting his nervous force in assaults on windmills. But it is his habit, whenever he finds it necessary or thinks it timely to say something in answer to free-money advocates, to set up a windmill, label it free money, and attack that. An instance of this occurs in a scolding article on the subject in his issue of February 17, as the following sentence shows: We had a little taste of this free currency in the days of State wildcat banking, when every little community had its State bank issues. The italics are mine,—used to emphasize the substitution of the windmill Stat... (From:
Monopoly, Communism, and Liberty. [Liberty, March 26, 1887.] Pinney of the Winsted Press grows worse and worse. It will be remembered that, in attacking the free-money theory, he said we had a taste of it in the day of State wildcat banking, when every little community had its State bank issues; to which I made this answer: How could State bank issues be free money? Monopoly is monopoly, whether granted by the United States or by a single State, and the old State banking system was a thoroughly monopolistic system. This language clearly showed that the free money objection to the old State banks as well as to the present national banks is not founded on any mistaken idea that in either case the government actually issues the money, but... (From:
Pinney His Own Procrustes. [Liberty, April 23, 1887.] Having exhausted the resources of sophistry, and unable longer to dodge the inexorable and Procrustean logic of Pinney the anti-Prohibitionist, Pinney the Protectionist has subsided, and is now playing possum in the Procrustean bed in which Pinney the anti-Prohibitionist has laid him. But Pinney the Greenbacker evidently hopes still, by some fortunate twist or double, to find an avenue of escape yet open, and thus to avoid the necessity of doing the possum act twice. Accordingly, in his Winsted Press of April 7, he makes several frantic dashes into the dark, the first of which is as follows:(78 ¶ 1) Our first objection to free money was that the (From:
Ten Questions Briefly Answered. [Liberty, May 16, 1891.] Liberty is asked by the Mutual Bank Propaganda of Chicago to answer the following questions, and takes pleasure in complying with the request.(79 ¶ 1) 1. Does the prohibitory tax of ten percent imposed by Congress on any issue of paper money other than is issued by the U. S. Treasury limit the volume of money? If not, why not?(79 ¶ 2) Yes.(79 ¶ 3) 2. Whence did the State originally derive the right to dictate what the people should use as money?(79 ¶ 4) (From:
A Standard of Value a Necessity. [Liberty, June 13, 1891.] Readers of Liberty will remember an article in No. 184 on The Functions of Money, reprinted from the Galveston News. In a letter to the News I commented upon this article as follows:(80 ¶ 1) I entirely sympathize with your disposal of the Evening Post’s attempt to belittle the function of money as a medium of exchange; but do you go far enough when you content yourself with saying that a standard of value is highly desirable? Is it not absolutely necessary? Is money possible without it? If no standard is definitely adopted, and then if paper money is issued, does not the first commod (From:
A Necessity or a Delusion,—Which? [Liberty, June 27, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(81 ¶ 1) It is not only a delusion, but a misuse of language to talk about a standard of value. Give us a standard of pain and pleasure, and you may convince us that there can be a standard of value. I am well aware of the difficulty of discussing this question, even with so precise an editor as Mr. Tucker; but since he has called into question the views presented in my pamphlet, I feel called upon to lay before the readers of Liberty some additional arguments to show the correctness of what Mr. Tucker has honored by calling the Westrup view.(81 ¶ 2) (From:
Anarchy’s New Ally. [Liberty, June 18, 1892.] Natural science and technical skill, which have revolutionized so many things, may yet revolutionize political economy, and in a way little dreamed of. It has long been known that the water of the ocean contains gold and silver. The percentage of these metals, however, is so very small that at first thought it hardly seems worth noticing. And as a matter of fact little notice has been taken of it, but principally for the reason that the extraction of the metals by any advantageous method has been deemed an impossibility. Now comes the Fairy Electricity, whose wand has already achieved so many wonders, and promises us a new miracle, which, though possibly less strange in itself than so... (From:
Economic Superstition. [Liberty, August 13, 1892.] Apropos of my editorial of a few weeks ago, forecasting the probable increase in the supply of gold through its extraction from the ocean and the consequences thereof, Comrade Koopman writes me: If this is so, every craft that sails the ocean blue will carry an electrical center-board to rake in the gold as it sails along. I am afraid, though, that the governments will betake themselves to platinum (I believe Russia tried it once) or some other figment, and so postpone their day of reckoning. But what a shaking-up a gold deluge will give them if it come! I hope we may be there to see. If the present adherence to gold were anything but a religion, there would be some ground for Comrade ... (From:
A Book that is Not Milk for Babes. [Liberty, November 23, 1889.] The most important book that has been published this year comes to Liberty from the press of the J. B. Lippincott Company, of Philadelphia. It is a little volume of something over a hundred very small pages, printed from very large type. For ten years to come it probably will be read by one person where Looking Backward is read by a thousand, but the economic teaching which it contains will do more in the long run to settle the labor question than will ever be done by Looking Backward, Progress and Poverty, and The Cooperative Commonwealth combined. Its title is Involuntary Idleness: An Exposition of the Cause of the Discrepancy Existing between the Supply of, (From:
State Banking versus Mutual Banking. [Liberty, February 15, 1890.] To the Editor of Liberty:(84 ¶ 1) In view of the favorable criticism which Involuntary Idleness received at your hands, I gladly accept the invitation to state my reasons for advocating governmental management of the circulating medium, rather than free banking.(84 ¶ 2) My studies have led me to the conviction that mutual banking cannot deprive capital of its power to bring unearned returns to its owner. Referring to my exposition of the monetary circulation between the financial and the industrial group, and the inevitable effects flowing from the (From:
Mr. Bilgram’s Rejoinder. [Liberty, April 19, 1890.] To the Editor of Liberty:(85 ¶ 1) My rejoinder on your remarks on my last communication, in your issue of February 15, was unavoidably delayed.(85 ¶ 2) Above all, I must admit an omission in my exposition, but, since it was on both sides of the question, the result remains unaffected. I had paid no attention to the labor involved in making loans. Including this admitted factor, my argument is this: The expenses of mutual banks may be divided into three categories,—i.e., risks, cost of making loans, and cost of making the tokens. These three items are r (From:
Free Money. [Liberty, December 13, 1884.] To the Editor of Liberty:(86 ¶ 1) The Picket Duty remarks of November 22 in regard to the importance of free money (with which I mainly agree) impel me to say a few words upon the subject. It is desirable, it seems to me, that Liberty should give its ideas upon that subject in a more systematic form than it has yet done (1). To be sure, it is easy for those who think to see that, if all laws in regard to money were abolished, commerce would readily provide its instruments of exchange. This might be promissory notes, or warehouse receipts, bills of lading, etc.; but, whatever it might be, the Anarchist could not doubt (From:
Free Money First. [Liberty, March 27, 1886.] J. M. M’Gregor, a writer for the Detroit Labor Leaf, thinks free land the chief desideratum. And yet he acknowledges that the wage-worker can’t go from any of our manufacturing centers to the western lands, because such a move would involve a cash outlay of a thousand dollars, which he has not got, nor can he get it. It would seem, then, that free land, though greatly to be desired, is not as sorely needed here and now as free capital. And this same need of capital would be equally embarrassing if the eastern lands were free, for still more capital would be required to stock and work a farm than the wage-worker can command. Under our present money system he could not even get cap... (From:
Stop the Main Leak First. [Liberty, May 1, 1886.] In answer to my article, Free Money First, in Liberty of March 27, in which was discussed the comparative importance of the money and land questions, J. M. M’Gregor, of the Detroit Labor Leaf, says: I grant free money first. I firmly believe free money will come first, too, though my critic and myself may be widely at variance in regard to what would constitute free money. I mean by free money the utter absence of restriction upon the issue of all money not fraudulent. If Mr. M’Gregor believes in this, I am heartily glad. I should like to be half as sure as he is that it really is coming first. From the present temper of the people it looks to me as if nothing free would com... (From:
An Indispensable Accident. [Liberty, June 28, 1884.] The persistent way in which Greenbackers dodge argument on the money question is very tiresome to a reasoning mortal. Let an Anarchist give a Greenbacker his idea of a good currency in the issue of which no government has any part, and it is ten to one that he will answer: Oh, that’s not money. It isn’t legal tender. Money is that thing which the supreme law of the land declares to be legal tender for debts in the country where that law is supreme.(89 ¶ 1) Brick Pomeroy made such an answer to Stephen Pearl Andrews recently, and appeared to think that he had said something final. Now, in the first place, this definition is not correct, for that is money which p (From:
Leland Stanford’s Land Bank. [Liberty, June 7, 1890.] The introduction in congress by Leland Stanford of a bill proposing to issue one hundred millions or more of United States notes to holders of agricultural land, said notes to be secured by first mortgages on such land and to bear two percent interest, is one of the most notable events of this time, and its significance is increased by the statement of Stanford, in his speech supporting the bill, that its provisions will probably be extended ultimately to other kinds of property. This bill is pregnant with the economics (not the politics) of Anarchism. It contains the germ of the social revolution. It provides a system of government mutual banking. If it were possible to hones... (From:
Mutualism in the Service of Capital. [Liberty, July 16, 1887.] In a long reply to Edward Atkinson’s recent address before the Boston Labor Lyceum, Henry George’s Standard impairs the effect of much sound and effective criticism by the following careless statement:(91 ¶ 1) Mr. Atkinson does not even know the nature of his own business. He told his audience that his regular work is to stop the cotton and woolen mills from being burned up. This is a grave blunder. Fire insurance companies are engaged in distributing losses by fire among the insured. As a statistician he knows that statistics show that in New Hampshire, when the State was boycotted by the insurance companies, (From:
Edward Atkinson’s Evolution. [Liberty, January 10, 1891.] The great central principle of Anarchistic economics—namely, the dethronement of gold and silver from their position of command over all wealth by the destruction of their monopoly currency privilege—is rapidly forging to the front. The Farmers’ Alliance sub-treasury scheme, unscientific and clumsy as it is, is a glance in this direction. The importance of Senator Stanford’s land bill, more scientific and workable, but incomplete, and vicious because governmental, has already been emphasized in these columns. But most notable of all is the recent revolution in the financial attitude of Edward Atkinson, the most orthodox and cock-sure of American eco... (From:
A Greenbacker in a Corner. [Liberty, August 9, 1884.] To the Editor of Liberty:(93 ¶ 1) In Liberty of June 28 you refer to a writer in the Essex Statesman, of whom you say that he gets down to bottom truth on the tariff question by averring that Free Money and Free Trade are corollaries of each other.(93 ¶ 2) Every Greenbacker (I am one) of brains perceived this simple (I might say axiomatic) doctrine the moment he thought at all on it.(93 ¶ 3) Monopoly of money is through interest; monopoly of trade is through taxin (From:
Free Money and the Cost Principle [Liberty, December 1, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(94 ¶ 1) I understand that the monopoly of money should be broken, and this would leave all persons who possessed property free to issue solvent notes thereon, the competition between them so reducing the rate of interest that it would enable would-be business people to borrow on advantageous terms. Now, to my mind this would do no good unless the new order of benefited business persons adopted the Cost principle in production and distribution, in order to break down the present bad arrangements in society that is composed of workers on the one side and idlers and unproductive or useles (From:
Proudhon’s Bank. [Liberty, September 20, 1884.] While the principle of equal representation of all available values by the notes of the Exchange Bank is what I have advocated these thirty years, I do not perceive how, in generalizing the system, as Proudhon would do (I refer to the paragraphs translated by Greene), we are to avoid the chances of forgery on the one side, and on the other of fraudulent issues by the officers of the Bank.(95 ¶ 1) Such a Bank, moreover, is equivalent to a general insurance policy on the property of a country, and the true value of its notes must depend on security against conflagrations and other catastrophes affecting real estate as well as personal property. (From:
Why Wages Should Absorb Profits. [Liberty, July 16, 1887.] Van Buren Denslow, discussing in the Truth Seeker the comparative rewards of labor and capital, points out that the present wage system divides profits about evenly between the two, instancing the railways of Illinois, which pay annually in salaries and wages $81,936,170, and to capital, which Mr. Denslow defines as the labor previously done in constructing and equipping the roads, $81,720,265. Then he remarks: No system of intentional profit-sharing is more equal than this, provided we assent to the principle that a day’s work already done and embodied in the form of capital is as well entitled to compensation for its use as a day’s work not yet done, which we call... (From:
A Great Idea Perverted. [Liberty, June 19, 1886.] The Knights of Labor Convention at Cleveland voted to petition Congress for the passage of an act which embodies in a very crude way the all-important principle that all property having due stability of value should be available as a basis of currency. The act provides for the establishment of loan offices in every county in the United States, which, under the administration of cashiers and tellers appointed by the Secretary of the Treasury, shall issue legal tender money, redeemable on demand in gold coin or its equivalent in lawful money of the United States, lending it at three percent a year to all who offer satisfactory security.(97 ¶ 1) The Knights have got hold of a g (From:
On Picket Duty. The outcry against middlemen is senseless. As E. H. Heywood puts it, Middlemen are as important as end men. And they are as truly producers. Distribution is a part of production. Nothing is wholly produced until it is ready for use, and nothing is ready for use until it has reached the place where it is to be used. Whoever brings it to that place is a producer, and as such entitled to charge for his work. The trouble with middlemen is that they charge consumers not only for their work, but for the use of their invested capital. As it is, they are useful members of society. Eliminate usury from their methods, and they will become respectable members also.—Liberty, October 1, 1881.(98 ¶ 1) Those who would have t... (From:
The Land for the People. [Liberty, June 24, 1882.] The Liverpool speech,[16] it seems, was delivered by Davitt in response to a challenge from the English press to explain the meaning of the phrase, the land for the people. We hope they understand it now.(99 ¶ 1) The land for the people, according to Parnell, appears to mean a change of the present tenants into proprietors of the estates by allowing them to purchase on easy terms fixed by the State and perhaps with the State’s aid, and a maintenance thereafter of the present landlord system, involving the collection of rents by law.(99 ¶ 2) The land for the people, (From:
Basic Principles of Economics: Rent. [Liberty, October 3, 1885.] In following up the issues made by Mr. Tucker in the August number of Liberty, I am not quixotic enough to defend Proudhon either against Mr. T. or against his own possible inconsistencies. Only two of his works (recommended by Mr. T.) have been open to me. What I have to say stands upon its own merits, appealing to reason and the instinct of justice.(100 ¶ 1) I. The fiction of the productivity of capital.(100 ¶ 2) In productivity for human needs or desires, human activity is implied. No one pretends that capital or the results of past labor can in t (From:
Rent: Parting Words. [Liberty, December 12, 1885.] The terminology employed by me in the preceding numbers of Liberty needs no defense, as I have used common words in their usual sense without regard to the technicalities of schoolmen.(101 ¶ 1) My admission that payments by a tenant beyond restoration of all values removed by crops, and during the years of culture, should justly be reckoned as purchase money, has nothing to do with terminology; it employs no words in an unusual sense. Therein consists, however, my radical accord with Proudhon and other modern socialists, and it cuts to the root of the tribute paid to idle landlords. The rent on real estate in cities has (From:
Property Under Anarchism. [Liberty, July 12, 1890.] The current objection to Anarchism, that it would throw property titles and especially land titles into hopeless confusion, has originated an interesting discussion in The Free Life between Auberon Herbert, the editor, and Albert Tarn, an Anarchistic correspondent. Mr. Tarn is substantially right in the position that he takes; his weakness lies in confining himself to assertion,—a weakness of which Mr. Herbert promptly takes advantage.(102 ¶ 1) Mr. Tarn’s letter is as follows:(102 ¶ 2) To the Editor of The Free Life:(102 ¶ 3) (From:
Mere Land No Savior for Labor. [Liberty, May 7, 1887.] Here is a delicious bit of logic from Mr. George: If capital, a mere creature of labor, is such an oppressive thing, its creator, when free, can strangle it by refusing to reproduce it. The italics are mine. If capital is oppressive, it must be oppressive of labor. What difference does it make, then, what labor can do when free? The question is what it can do when oppressed by capital. Mr. George’s next sentence, to be sure, indicates that the freedom he refers to is freedom from land monopoly. But this does not improve his situation. He is enough of an economist to be very well aware that, whether it has land or not, labor which can get no capital—that is, which is opp... (From:
Henry George’s Secondary Factors. [Liberty, September 24, 1887.] In trying to answer the argument that land is practically useless to labor unprovided with capital, Henry George declares that labor and land, even in the absence of secondary factors obtained from their produce, have in their union to-day, as they had in the beginning, the potentiality of all that man ever has brought, or ever can bring, into being.(104 ¶ 1) This is perfectly true; in fact, none know it better than the men whom Mr. George thus attempts to meet.(104 ¶ 2) But, as Cap’n Cuttle was in the habit of remarking, the bearin’ o’ this e (From:
The State Socialists and Henry George. [Liberty, September 24, 1887.] Just as I have more respect for the Roman Catholic Christian who believes in authority without qualification, than for the Protestant Christian who speaks in the name of liberty, but does not know the meaning of the word, so I have more respect for the State Socialist than for Henry George, and in the struggle between the two my sympathy is with the former. Nevertheless the State Socialists have only themselves to blame for the support they have hitherto extended to George, and the ridiculous figure that some of them now cut in their sackcloth and ashes is calculated to amuse. Burnette G. Haskell, for instance. In his Labor Enquirer, previous to the issue of August 2... (From:
Liberty and the George Theory. [Liberty, November 5, 1887.] There is much in Liberty to admire, and in Anarchism that I believe has a divine right of way. But I see little of these qualities in the criticisms made by Editor Tucker on the George movement, and much, as I think, of the exaggeration and inconsistency inherent in the Anarchistic temper and teachings.(106 ¶ 1) You have more respect, you say, for the State Socialist than for Henry George, and in the struggle between the two your sympathy is with the former. This is vague, to say the least; and the meaning is not helped by the comparison with the Roman Catholic who believes in authority without qualification, and (From:
A Criticism That Does Not Apply. [Liberty, July 16, 1887.] To the Editor of Liberty:(107 ¶ 1) It pains me to see your frequent attacks on Henry George, as they make the defenders of monopolies secure in the knowledge that there is discord in the ranks of the reformers. It appears to me—though I may be mistaken and will gladly accept arguments and refutation—that one important point of the land question has escaped your attention, just as the vital point of the money question does not seem to be clear to the editor of the Standard. It is my conviction that in a state of perfect liberty, assuming the existence of intelligent egoism, the people will combine for (From:
Land Occupancy and its Conditions [Liberty, August 27, 1887.] To the Editor of Liberty:(108 ¶ 1) Your reply of July 16, 1887 to my letter is not at all satisfactory to me. I cannot with my best endeavor harmonize your statement: I am convinced, however, that the abolition of the money monopoly and the refusal of protection to all land titles except those of occupiers would … reduce this evil to a very small fraction of its present proportions (the italics are mine), with your opposition to all government. The natural inference of your statement is that you are in favor of protecting the occupier of land. Who is to give this protection? Who is to wield the aut (From:
Competitive Protection. [Liberty, October 13, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(109 ¶ 1) You have more than once expressed the view that in an Anarchistic state even the police protection may be in private hands and subject to competition, so that whoever needs protection may hire it from whichever person or company he chooses. Now, suppose two men wish to occupy the same piece of land and appeal to rival companies for protection. What will be the result?(109 ¶ 2) It appears to me that there will be interminable contention as long as there is a plurality of protectors upon the same territory, and that ultimately all others must submit (From:
Protection, and its Relation to Rent. [Liberty, October 27, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(110 ¶ 1) Referring to your favored reply of October 13, I fail to find an answer to the question as to the result of the attempt of two rival protectors to secure to different persons the same territory. I cannot see how, under such conditions, a physical conflict can be avoided, (1) nor is it clear why the best and cheapest protector will be the most patronized if he is not at the same time the strongest. It would be the power rather than the quality of protection that would secure patronage. (2) But if the tyrant by sophistry could convince the masses, as he now does, that his policy (From:
Liberty and Land. [Liberty, December 15, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(111 ¶ 1) Encouraged by the prompt and considerate attention given to my letter (in your issue of October 27), I beg leave to continue the discussion, especially since some of your arguments are not at all clear to me.(111 ¶ 2) You say that my definition of the right of possession of land rests on an assumption that there is an entity known as the community, which is the rightful owner of all land. I do not understand what you mean by rightful ownership. Ownership outside of a combination of individuals is to me as inconceivable as distan (From:
Rent, and its Collection by Force. [Liberty, January 19, 1889.] To the Editor of Liberty.(112 ¶ 1) I must confess that I may not fully grasp what its advocates exactly mean by Anarchism. Referring to the reply to my letter, in the issue of December 15, I cannot harmonize the sentiments of an opponent of even a temporary monopoly of inventors and authors with the defense of an indefinite monopoly of the discoverer of a gold mine. Moreover, the reference to the law of equal liberty appears to me inconsistent with your standpoint. If I understand this law, it can be thus expressed: Given a community of intelligent beings, who wish to live in peace and enjoy a maximum of happiness, what (From:
The Distribution of Rent. [Liberty, February 23, 1889.] To the Editor of Liberty:(113 ¶ 1) Before replying to your rejoinder regarding land vs. skill, I should be pleased to know whether in an Anarchistic state, in the event of a transgression of equal liberty, the injured party is to resent the act according to his judgment and caprice, or is repression to be exercised by an organized power according to rules determined by previous agreement? In the one case the unavoidable difference of opinions must be a source of interminable disturbances; in the other, we have the operation of an organized society with laws and supreme power,—in fact a political State. If an agreement exist (From:
Economic Rent. [Liberty, November 5, 1892.] To the Editor of Liberty:(114 ¶ 1) I have often seen it claimed that under the Anarchistic organization of society economic rent would disappear, or be reduced to an insignificant amount. But I have never yet been satisfied with any explanation of the way in which this is to be brought about.(114 ¶ 2) Some speak as if the abolition of rent were to be an immediate result of the abolition of interest, apparently taking the ground that rent is a product of the selling price of land and the interest of money. But according to the accepted theory of economists (the only one that I have learned to (From:
Liberty and Property [Liberty, December 31, 1892.] To the Editor of Liberty:(115 ¶ 1) I can agree with much that you say in your answer to my letter in No. 244 of Liberty, but I do not think you have proved your case.(115 ¶ 2) In the first place, I object to your assumption that the plan proposed by Anarchists would realize equal liberty with regard to the land. You praise the idea of letting wealth distribute itself in a free market. I echo your praises; but I cannot see that they are anything to the point of this discussion, for you do not offer a free market.(115 ¶ 3) (From:
Going to Pieces on the Rocks. [Liberty, March 12, 1887.] Some of Henry George’s correspondents have been pestering him a good deal lately with embarrassing as to what will become, under his system, of the home of a man who has built a house upon a bit of land which afterwards so rises in value that he cannot afford to pay the taxes on it. Unable to deny that such a man would be as summarily evicted by the government landlord as is the Irish farmer in arrears by the individual landlord, and yet afraid to squarely admit it, Mr. George has twisted and turned and doubled and doged, attempting to shield himself by all sorts of irrelevant considerations, until at last he is reduced to asking in a rejoinder if this argument has not a gr... (From:
Simplifying Government. [Liberty, September 10, 1887.] Henry George’s correspondents continue to press him regarding the fate of the man whose home should so rise in value through increase of population that he would be taxed out of it. At first, it will be remembered, Mr. George coolly sneered at the objectors to this species of eviction as near relatives of those who objected to the abolition of slavery on the ground that it would deprive the widow Smith of her only nigger. Liberty made some comments upon this, which Mr. George never noticed. Since their appearance, however, his analogy between property in niggers and a man’s property in his house has lapsed, as President Cleveland would say, into a condition of inn (From:
On Picket Duty. Henry George, in the Standard, calls Dr. Cogswell of San Francisco, who has endowed a polytechnic college in that city, and for its maintenance has conveyed certain lands to trustees, a philanthropist by proxy, on the ground that the people who pay rent for these lands are really taxed by Dr. Cogswell for the support of the college. But what are Henry George himself, by his theory, and his ideal State, by its practice, after realization, but philanthropists by proxy? What else, in fact, is the State as it now exists? (Oftener a cannibal than a philanthropist, to be sure, but in either case by proxy.) Does not Mr. George propose that the State shall tax individuals to secure public improvements which they may not consider s... (From:
Socialism: What It Is [Liberty, May 17, 1884.] Do you like the word Socialism? said a lady to me the other day; I fear I do not; somehow I shrink when I hear it. It is associated with so much that is bad! Ought we to keep it?(119 ¶ 1) The lady who asked this question is an earnest Anarchist, a firm friend of Liberty, and—it is almost superfluous to add—highly intelligent. Her words voice the feeling of many. But after all it is only a feeling, and will not stand the test of thought. Yes, I answered, it is a glorious word, much abused, violently distorted, stupidly misunderstood, but expressing better than any other the purpose of political and economic progress, the aim of the Re (From:
Armies that Overlap. [Liberty, March 8, 1890.] Of late the Twentieth Century has been doing a good deal in the way of definition. Now, definition is very particular business, and it seems to me that it is not always performed with due care in the Twentieth Century office.(120 ¶ 1) Take this, for instance: A Socialist is one who believes that each industry should be co-ordinated for the mutual benefit of all concerned under a government by physical force.(120 ¶ 2) It is true that writers of reputation have given definitions of Socialism not differing in any essential from the foregoing,—among others, General Walker. (From:
Socialism and the Lexicographers. [Liberty, January 30, 1892.] Liberty is informed that the Collectivists expect to prove their claim to a monopoly of the name Socialism by reference to the Century Dictionary as an indisputable authority. They will find that the Anarchistic Socialists are not to be stripped of one half of their title by the mere dictum of the last lexicographer. If the dictionary-makers were in substantial agreement in making Socialism exclusive of Anarchism, the demand that Anarchists should cease to call themselves Socialists might be made with some grace. But that there is no approach to unanimity among them on this point will be seen from the following definitions of Socialism taken from various cyclopædias a... (From:
The Sin of Herbert Spencer. [Liberty, May 17, 1884.] Liberty welcomes and criticizes in the same breath the series of papers by Herbert spencer on The New Toryism, The Coming Slavery, The Sins of Legislators, etc., now running in the Popular Science Monthly and the English Contemporary Review. They are very true, very important, and very misleading. They are true for the most part in what they say, and false and misleading in what they fail to say. Mr. Spencer convicts legislators of undeniable and enormous sins in meddling with and curtailing and destroying the people’s rights. Their sins are sins of commission. But Mr. Spencer’s sin of omission is quite as grave. He is one of (From:
Will Professor Sumner Choose? [Liberty, November 14, 1885.] Professor Sumner, who occupies the chair of political economy at Yale, addressed last Sunday the New Haven Equal Rights Debating Club. He told the State Socialists and Communists of that city much wholesome truth. But, as far as I can learn from the newspaper reports, which may of course have left out, as usual, the most important things that the speaker said, he made no discrimination in his criticisms. He appears to have entirely ignored the fact that the Anarchistic Socialists are the most unflinching champions in existence of his own pet principle of laissez faire. He branded Socialism as the summit of absurdity, utterly failing to note that one great school of Socialism s... (From:
After Freiheit, Der Sozialist. [Liberty, April 28, 1888.] The first criticism upon Libertas[18] came from the Communists by the pen of Herr Most. That I have answered, and Herr Most promises a rejoinder in Freiheit. Meanwhile there comes an attack from another quarter,—from the camp of the State Socialists. In their official organ, Der Sozialist, one of its regular writers, J. G., devotes two columns to comments upon my paper, State Socialism and Anarchism. Under the heading Consistent Anarchists he first institutes a contrast between the Anarchists and the Communists who call themselves Anarchists, which is complimentary to the former’s consistency, logic, and (From:
State Socialism and Liberty. [Liberty, February 21, 1891.] To the Editor of Liberty:(125 ¶ 1) An Anarchist paper defines an Individualist to be one who believes in the principle of recognizing the right of every non-aggressive individual to the full control of his person and property. Is this the meaning of the word as you understand it? If so, and if it is correct, Individualism and Socialism are reconcilable, since the aim of the latter is the attainment of the condition sought by the former. Though the methods of Socialists may conflict in effect with the principle of Individualism, they accord with it fundamentally, do they not? From all the works I can find on modern Socialism, or Nati (From:
On Picket Duty. In a series of articles in the London Commonweal, Dr. Edward Aveling, newly-fledged disciple of Karl Marx, discusses economic questions. He concludes each article with what he calls a concise definition of each of the terms mentioned. These two definitions stand side by side. Natural object—that on which human labor has not been expended; Product—a natural object on which human labor has been expended. A product, then, is something on which human labor has not been expended on which human labor has been expended. Curious animal, a product! No wonder the laborer is unable to hold on to it. More slippery than a greased pig, I should imagine. But this is a scientific definition, and I suppose it must be true. For ... (From:
General Walker and the Anarchists.[19] [Liberty, November 19, 1887.] Ladies and Gentlemen:—Some four years ago I had occasion to write a criticism of a work then new,—Professor Ely’s French and German Socialism in Modern Times,—and I began it with these paragraphs:(127 ¶ 1) It is becoming the fashion in these days for the parsons who are hired, either directly or indirectly, consciously or unconsciously, to whitewash the sins of the plutocrats, and for the professors who are hired, either directly or indirectly, consciously or unconsciously, to educate the sons of the plutocrats to continue in the transgressions of their fathers,—it is becoming the fa (From:
Herr Most on Libertas. [Liberty, April 14, 1888.] It is due to John Most to say that, in his paper Freiheit, he has greeted the appearance of Libertas in a spirit of entire fairness and liberality, at the same time that he has not hesitated to point out those of its features to which he cannot award approval. Besides giving liberal extracts from the first number, duly credited, he devotes nearly a column and a half to a review of its merits and demerits, which is hearty in its commendation and frank in its criticism. Barring the use in one sentence of the word hypocritical, his article is free from those abusive epithets of which he has heretofore made me a target. With this preface of thanks for both his praise and his censure, I prop... (From:
Still Avoiding the Issue [Liberty, May 12, 1888.] As I expected, Herr Most, in his controversy with me upon private property, Communism, and the State, is as reluctant as ever to come to close quarters in any attempt to destroy my main position, and, for sole response to my challenge to do so, crouches behind the name of Marx, not daring even to attempt upon his own account the use of the weapons with which Marx has assailed it. Herr Most had promised to accept private property if I would show him that it is compatible with production on the large scale without the exploitation of labor. He warned me, to be sure, against showing this by Proudhon’s banking system. But I answered that he is bound to accept my proposition on the str... (From:
Herr Most Distilled and Consumed. [Liberty, June 9, 1888.] After proclaiming, in Freiheit of May 19, his intention of proceeding to my final demolition, Herr Most, in Freiheit of May 26, closes his side of the controversy with me with such a homœopathic dilution of his preceding articles that it is scarcely worth attention. Summarized, his positions are that the controversy is unequal, because he quotes and then criticizes, while I criticize without quotation; that I am the dodger, not he, because the essential question is the private property question, while I insist on discussing Proudhon’s banking system; that he has read Liberty for six years, and has found no plausible defense of that system in its pages, and that the ... (From:
Should Labor be Paid or Not? [Liberty, April 28, 1888.] In No. 121 of Liberty, criticizing an attempt of Kropotkin to identify Communism and Individualism, I charged him with ignoring the real question whether Communism will permit the individual to labor independently, own tools, sell his labor or his products, and buy the labor or products of others. In Herr Most’s eyes this is so outrageous that, in reprinting it, he puts the words the labor of others in large black type. Most being a Communist, he must, to be consistent, object to the purchase and sale of anything whatever; but why he should particularly object to the purchase and sale of labor is more than I can understand. Really, in the last analysis, labor is the only thi... (From:
Does Competition Mean War? [Liberty, August 4, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(132 ¶ 1) Your thought-provoking controversy with Herr Most suggests this question: Whether is Individualism or Communism more consistent with a society resting upon credit and mutual confidence, or, to put it another way, whether is competition or cooperation the truest expression of that mutual trust and fraternal good-will which alone can replace present forms of authority, usages and customs as the social bond of union?(132 ¶ 2) The answer seems obvious enough. Competition, if it means anything at all, means war, and, so far from tending to enhance the (From:
Competition and Monopoly Confounded. [Liberty, September 1, 1888.] To the Editor of Liberty:(133 ¶ 1) Does competition mean war? you ask, and then go on to answer:(133 ¶ 2) The supposition that competition means war rests upon old notions and false phrases that have been long current, but are rapidly passing into the limbo of exploded fallacies.(133 ¶ 3) Pardon me, Mr. Tucker, but are you quite sure that the supposition in question rests upon nothing more than old notions and false phrases? Go out into the highways and byeways of the work-a-day world, (From:
On Picket Duty. In a speech recently delivered in Paris, Kropotkin said: As the idea of the inviolability of the individual’s home life has developed during the second half of our century, so the idea of collective right to everything that serves in the production of wealth has developed in the masses. This is a fact; and whoever wants to live, as we do, with the life of the people and follow its development will admit that this affirmation is but an accurate summary of popular aspirations. Then Kropotkinian Anarchism means the liberty to eat, but not to cook; to drink, but not to brew; to wear, but not to spin; to dwell, but not to build; to give, but not to sell or buy; to think, but not to print; to speak, but not to hire a hall;... (From:
The Power of Passive Resistance. [Liberty, October 4, 1884.] Edgeworth makes appeal to me through Lucifer to know how I propose to starve out Uncle Sam. Light on this subject he would rather have than roast beef and plum pudding for dinner in sæculâ sæculorum. It puzzles him to know whether by the clause resistance to taxation on the sphynx head of Liberty on God and the State I mean that true Anarchists should advertise their principles by allowing property to be seized by the sheriff and sold at auction, in order by such personal sacrifices to become known to each other as men and women of a common faith, true to that faith in the teeth of their interests and trustworthy (From:
The Irish Situation in 1881. [Liberty, October 29, 1881.] Ireland’s chief danger: the liability of her people—besotted with superstition; trampled on by tyranny; ground into the dust beneath the weight of two despotisms, one religious, the other political; victims, on the one hand, of as cruel a Church and, on the other, of as heartless a State as have ever blackened with ignorance or reddened with blood the records of civilized nations—to forget the wise advice of their cooler leaders, give full vent to the passions which their oppressors are aiming to foment, and rush headlong and blindly into riotous and ruinous revolution.(136 ¶ 1) Ireland’s true order: the wonderful Land League, the nearest approach,... (From:
The Method of Anarchy. [Liberty, June 18, 1887.] To the editor of the San Francisco People Anarchism is evidently a new and puzzling doctrine. It having been propounded by an Anarchist from a public platform in that city that Anarchism must come about by peaceful methods and that physical force is never justifiable except in self-defense, the People declares that, except physical force, it can see but two methods of settling the labor question: one the voluntary surrender of privileges by the privileged class, which it thinks ridiculous, and the other the ballot, which it rightly describes as another form of force. Therefore the People, supposing itself forced to choose between persuasion, the ballot, and direct physical force, selects... (From:
Theoretical Methods. [Liberty, July 16, 1887.] From the raw recruit in the Salvation Army up to the Theoretical Anarchist, none are lacking in methods whereby man may be saved. The religious recruit who, perhaps, has just heard of Jesus is filled with sublime faith. In his exuberant optimism earth and heaven seem about to unite, peace is to reign everywhere, and happiness fill every soul. But one thing is lacking,—faith. So he sets out, like Bunyan’s Christian, steadfast in purpose to convince the world that the vade mecum of temporal and eternal success is but this one thing: Think as I do, and you will be saved! But alas! men have listened to the old song for centuries, and heaven has not descended nor earth ascended to... (From:
A Seed Planted. [Liberty, May 26, 1888.] Time: Thursday, May 17, 7.30 P.M.(139 ¶ 1) Place: Residence of the editor of Liberty, 10 Garfield Ave., Crescent Beach, Revere (a town in the suburbs of Boston).(139 ¶ 2) Dramatis Personæ: Charles F. Fenno, so-called tax-collector of Revere, and the editor of Liberty.(139 ¶ 3) In answer to a knock the editor of Liberty opens his front door, and is accosted by a man whom he never met before, but who proves to be Fenno.(139 ¶ 4) (From:
The Home Guard Heard From. [Liberty, June 23, 1888.] The last issue of the Workmen’s Advocate contains the following communication:(140 ¶ 1) To the Workmen’s Advocate:(140 ¶ 2) Oh! what a feeling of rapture came over me as I began reading the dialogue between Tucker and Fenno in the last number of Liberty. (Ego Tucker needs no introduction; Fenno is the fiend who came to collect the poll-tax.) My thoughts went back to another age and to distant clime. I thought of John Hampden refusing to pay the ship-tax. I had often asked myself, who will be the leader in this, the struggle of the f (From:
Colonization. [Liberty, July 26, 1884.] An excellently written article by E. C. Walker sets forth considerations in favor of isolated communities for reformatory purposes which are forcible and weighty, especially that of preventing, by the avoidance of social ostracism, the constant and serious drain upon the radical forces. Nevertheless, Réclus is right, all things considered. It is just because Mr. Walker’s earnest desire for a fair practical test of Anarchistic principles cannot be fulfilled elsewhere than in the very heart of existing industrial and social life that all these community attempts are unwise. Reform communities will either be recruited from the salt of the earth, and then their success will not be taken ... (From:
Labor’s New Fetish. [Liberty, August 23, 1884.] General Butler’s long-expected letter [in acceptance of the nomination for the presidency given him by the labor party] is out at last. The question now is how many it will hoodwink. Among these at least will not be Liberty. Would that as much could be asserted of all who think they believe in Liberty. But the political habit is a clinging one; the fascinations of political warfare seldom altogether lose their charm over those who have once been under its influence; traces of faith in its efficacy still linger in the minds of those who suppose themselves emancipated; the old majority superstition yet taints the reformer’s blood, and, in face of the evils that threaten so... (From:
Mr. Pentecost’s Belief in the Ballot. [Liberty, January 19, 1889.] I certainly admire Hugh O. Pentecost. He is a growing and a fair-minded man. His Twentieth Century, now published weekly in an enlarged form, is doing a useful work. He already accepts Anarchy as an ultimate, and the whole tenor of his writings is leading him on, it seems to me, to a casting-off of his devotion to the single-tax movement and to reforms still more distinctly State Socialistic, and to a direct advocacy of Anarchistic principles and methods. It is because I believe this that I feel like reasoning with him regarding a vital inconsistency in his discourse of January 13 on Ballots or Bullets? in which, moreover, the tendency referred to is marked.(143 &... (From:
A Principle of Social Therapeutics. [Liberty, January 22, 1887.] The idea that Anarchy can be inaugurated by force is as fallacious as the idea that it can be sustained by force. Force cannot preserve Anarchy; neither can it bring it. In fact, one of the inevitable influences of the use of force is to postpone Anarchy. The only thing that force can ever do for us is to save us from extinction, to give us a longer lease of life in which to try to secure Anarchy by the only methods that can ever bring it. But this advantage is always purchased at immense cost, and its attainment is always attended by frightful risk. The attempt should be made only when the risk of any other course is greater. When a physician sees that his patient’... (From:
The Morality of Terrorism. [Liberty, May 7, 1887.] E. Belfort Bax has an article on Legality in the London Commonweal, which for the most part is by no means bad. He denies the obligation to respect legality as such, and in the light of this denial discusses the policy of terrorism and assassination. Respecting this policy, he declares, as Liberty has frequently declared before him, that it should be used against the oppressors of mankind only when they have succeeded in hopelessly repressing all peaceful methods of agitation. If he had stopped there, all would have been well. But not satisfied with characterizing the policy as inexpedient save under the conditions referred to, he must needs go further and brand it as immoral. Then he ... (From:
The Beast of Communism. [Liberty, March 27, 1886.] Henri Rochefort is reported to have said in an interview the other day: Anarchists are merely criminals. They are robbers. They want no government whatever, so that, when they meet you on the street, they can knock you down and rob you. This infamous and libelous charge is a very sweeping one; I only wish that I could honestly meet it with as sweeping a denial. And I can, if I restrict the word Anarchist as it always has been restricted in these columns, and as it ought to be restricted everywhere and always. Confining the word Anarchist so as to include none but those who deny all external authority over the individual, whether that of the present State or that of some industrial coll... (From:
Time Will Tell. [Liberty, April 17, 1886.] To the fearful charges of crime made in the last issue of Liberty against the Communistic Anarchists of New York and vicinity, John Most makes answer in Freiheit. After exhausting his choice vocabulary of epithets upon myself and parties whom he supposes to be behind me, he says that the press have ignored the charges as foolish; that I could not know that such deeds have been done, because I live in Boston; that the two Bohemians referred to by me did not belong to the Bohemian group; that Schwab left the Freiheit, not to separate himself from crime, but out of cowardice and fear of the police; that he (Most) was never informed that such crimes had been perpetrated; that, if he had been, he (From:
The Facts Coming to Light. [Liberty, May 22, 1886.] In a recent editorial, speaking of my accusations against the firebugs, I said: It has never been my intention to try these charges, or prove them, in these columns. Sooner or later that will be done elsewhere. That I was not talking at random has since been shown by the appearance of a remarkable article in the New York Sun, of May 3, corroborating the charges in a way that defies all answer. After referring to Liberty’s exposure and Most’s answer thereto, the Sun says:(148 ¶ 1) An attempt to verify Most’s denial discloses a peculiar condition of things in Anarchistic circles here. (From:
Liberty and Violence. [Liberty, May 22, 1886.] The recent bomb-throwing at Chicago opens the whole question of the advisability of armed revolution. The right to resist oppression by violence is beyond doubt; it is only the policy of exercising this right that Anarchists at this juncture have to consider. In Liberty’s view but one thing can justify its exercise on any large scale,—namely, the denial of free thought, free speech, and a free press. Even then its exercise would be unwise unless suppression were enforced so stringently that all other means of throwing it off had become hopeless. Bloodshed in itself is pure loss. When we must have freedom of agitation, and when nothing but bloodshed will secure it, then bloodshe... (From:
Convicted by a Packed Jury. [Liberty, September 18, 1886.] Unjust as the Chicago verdict was, the trial brought out certain facts regarding Illinois juries by which other communities might profit and at which Lysander Spooner must rejoice. In his great work, now out of print, Trial by Jury, Mr. Spooner shows how the practice regarding jury trial has been turned by usurpation from the original theory, until it has lost altogether the three features that made it most potent as a safeguard of individual liberty. These three features were: 1, that the jury must be chosen by lot from a wheel containing the names of the whole body of citizens of the vicinity, instead of from a selected panel; 2, that it must be judge, not only of the facts, ... (From:
Why Expect Justice from the State? [Liberty, September 18, 1886.] Charles T. Fowler has written and Lucifer has published a very able article showing that the prosecution at Chicago was a prosecution of opinion and not of criminality, that the verdict was a verdict against Anarchy and not against bomb-throwing, and that the offense for which the victims are to be punished was not actual, but purely constructive. Setting aside the doubtless manufactured but certainly direct evidence put forward by the prosecution, of the man who swore that he saw Spies light the fuze and hand the bomb to Schnaubelt, and that then Schnaubelt threw it, Mr. Fowler’s position is a sound one. Sound also is the position taken by O, that the convictions ... (From:
The Lesson of the Hour [Liberty, September 24, 1887.] Unlike some of my friends, I have never entertained any hope that the supreme court of Illinois would overturn the verdict against the condemned Socialists of Chicago; and so, terrible as the recent news from that city is, I was not disappointed at it. But my heart grows heavier as the resources of defense diminish and the day approaches on which the brutal State proposes to execute upon these rash but noble men a base and far more rash revenge. To avert this act of madness and the unspeakable terrors to which it very possibly will lead, there remain but two cards yet to play in that game of statutory justice in which there is a percentage of chances in favor of the State that, if p... (From:
Convicted for their Opinions. [Liberty, September 24, 1887.] The judges of the supreme court of Illinois are in accord with the Communists of Illinois upon at least one point. They say in their opinion: Law and government cannot be abolished without revolution, bloodshed, and murder. Despite the sanction which the Communists thus receive from so exalted a quarter, Anarchists will continue to hold the contrary opinion, and to maintain that only under very rare and extreme circumstances is bloodshed essential to the abolition of government, that under other circumstancesit can be no more than incidental to it, and that it will not be even that when there is a little more intelligence abroad regarding the principle of liberty, which, revo... (From:
To the Breach, Comrades! [Liberty, November 19, 1887.] Of the tragedy just enacted at Chicago, what is there to say? Of a deed so foul perpetrated upon men so brave, what words are not inadequate to paint the blackness on the one hand and the glory on the other? My heart was never so full, my pen never so halt. As I write, the dying shout of noble Spies comes back to me from the scaffold: At this moment our silence is more powerful than speech. But, who speaks or who keeps silent, all of us, I am certain, will from this time forth face the struggle before us with stouter hearts and firmer tread for the examples that have been set us by our murdered comrades. If we add to these a clearer vision, the result will not be doubtful.(154 &par... (From:
On Picket Duty. It is one thing to admit the possibility of revolution; it is a second thing to point out that, in the presence of certain conditions and in the absence of certain other conditions, revolution is inevitable; it is a third and entirely different thing to so vividly foresee revolution that vision in every other direction becomes more and more obscure. When a man’s foresight of revolution has arrived at this dazzling pitch, it is safe to conclude that in his heart of hearts he desires revolution, clings against his reason to a superstitious belief in its economic efficacy, and would openly urge it instead of foreseeing it, did he not know that he could not defend such a course against reasoning men. Knowing this, howeve... (From:
The Lesson of Homestead. [Liberty, July 23, 1892.] Regarding methods, one of the truths that has been most steadily inculcated by this journal has been that social questions cannot be settled by force. Recent events have only confirmed this view. But when force comes, it sometimes leads incidentally to the teaching of other lessons than that of its own uselessness and becomes thereby to that extent useful. The appeal to force at Homestead affords a signal example of such incidental beneficence; for it has forced the capitalistic papers of the country, and notably the New York Sun, to take up a bold defense of liberty in order to protect property. Now, all that Anarchism asks is liberty; and when the enemies of liberty can find no way o... (From:
Save Labor from its Friends [Liberty, July 30, 1892.] During the conflict now on between capital and labor, seldom a day passes without the shedding of blood. One of the most recent victims is a prominent leader of the forces of capital. The disaster that has befallen him has called out a display of grief on his behalf which, so far as it comes from the camp of labor, seems to me theatrical, and in which I certainly cannot share. Henry C. Frick, like Charles A. Dana, the godfather of his two weeks-old son, is a conspicuous member of the brotherhood of thieves. In joining this nefarious band he took his life in his hands, and he knew it. It is but just to say that he has accepted his fate in the spirit of a bold bandit, without a cry or... (From:
Is Frick a Soldier of Liberty? [Liberty, August 20, 1892.] To the Editor of Liberty:(158 ¶ 1) In vain have I waited to hear from you a word in approval of the efforts of a man who lately has even risked his life in a fierce struggle for liberty. For even though Frick is one of the Brotherhood of Thieves, he is now on the side of Liberty. Nor can I see that he is any more responsible for the existence of that Brotherhood than those that lead the contention against him. His only crime is that he is successful under present conditions. Of course, being an employer myself, my opinion may possibly be warped; but if Frick, in this particular case at least, has instituted a war again (From:
Shall Strikers be Court-Martialed? [Liberty, August 25, 1883.] Of the multitude of novel and absurd and monstrous suggestions called forth from the newspapers by the telegraphers’ strike, none have equaled in novelty and absurdity and monstrosity the sober proposal of the editor of the New York Nation, that unsentimental being who prides himself on his hard head, that hereafter any and all employes of telegraph companies, railroad companies, and the post-office department who may see fit to strike work without first getting the consent of their employers be treated as are soldiers who desert or decline to obey the commands of their superior officers; in other words (we suppose, though the Nation does not use these other words), t... (From:
Census-Taking Fatal to Monopoly. [Liberty, July 21, 1888.] The makers of party platforms, the writers of newspaper editorials, the pounders of pulpit-cushions, and the orators of the stump, who are just now blending their voices in frantic chorus to proclaim the foreign origin of evil and to advocate therefore the exclusion of the foreign element from American soil, should study the figures compiled by Rev. Frederick Howard Wines from the tenth census reports and presented by him to the congress of the National Prison Association lately held in Boston. Such of these shriekers as are provided with thinkers may find in these statistics food for thought. From them it appears that, though the ratio of crime among our foreign-born populatio... (From:
Anarchy Necessarily Atheistic. [Liberty, January 9, 1886.] To the Editor of Liberty:(161 ¶ 1) If Anarchy, as you advocate it, is the abolition of all law and authority except the laws of self-government and self-restraint, and you believe that with these laws of self no man would injure his neighbor, how would such a condition of things, realizing the highest ideals of Socialism and negating all authority, differ from a society governed by the laws thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbor as thyself, and affirming the authority of Christ? (1) If there is no real difference, what use in any negation?(161 ¶ 2) (From:
A Fable for Malthusians [Liberty, July 31, 1886.] Of all the outstanding arguments developed by the interesting Malthusian discussion now in progress in Lucifer and Liberty the most singular, surprising, and short-sighted is that advanced by E. C. Walker in maintaining the identity of political and domestic economy so far as the problem of population is concerned.(162 ¶ 1) The prosperity of the whole, he tells Miss Kelly, exists only because of the prosperity of the parts.(162 ¶ 2) To speak of domestic economy, he tells Mr. J. F. Kelly, as though it were something that could be considered apart from so-called (From:
Auberon Herbert and his Work. [Liberty, May 23, 1885.] Auberon Herbert, whose essay, A Politician in Sight of Haven, creates such an enthusiasm for Liberty in the minds of all thinking people who read it, has recently published still another book of similar purport and purpose. He calls it The Right and Wrong of Compulsion by the State: A Statement of the Moral Principles of the Party of Individual Liberty, and the Political Measures Founded Upon Them. It consists of a series of papers written for Joseph Cowen’s paper, the Newcastle Chronicle, supplemented by a letter to the London Times on the English factory acts. Dedicated to Mr. Cowen’s constituents, The Workmen of Tyneside, it appeals with equal force to workmen (From:
Solutions of the Labor Problem. [Liberty, September 12, 1891.] Apropos of Labor Day, the Boston Herald printed in its issue of September 6 a collection of proposed solutions of the labor problem, received in response to a question which it had invited certain students and labor leaders to answer. The question was this: How is a just distribution of the products of labor to be obtained? The answers were from two hundred to five hundred words in length; below I give the essence of each:(164 ¶ 1) George E. McNeill, general organizer of the Federation of Labor:—By a reduction of the hours of labor.(164 ¶ 2) Edward Atkinson, political econo (From:
Karl Marx as Friend and Foe. [Liberty, April 14, 1883.] By the death of Karl Marx the cause of labor has lost one of the most faithful friends it ever had. Liberty says thus much in hearty tribute to the sincerity and hearty steadfastness of the man who, perhaps to a greater extent than any other, represented, by nature and by doctrine, the principle of authority which we live to combat. Anarchism knew in him its bitterest enemy, and yet every Anarchist must hold his memory in respect. Strangely mingled feelings of admiration and abhorrence are simultaneously inspired in us by contemplation of this great man’s career. Toward the two fundamental principles of the revolution of to-day he occupied an exactly contradictory attitude. ... (From:
Do the Knights of Labor Love Liberty? [Liberty, February 20, 1886.] To the Editor of Liberty:(166 ¶ 1) In Liberty of January 9 I see, in your notice of our friend, Henry Appleton, having become the editor of the Newsman, this precautionary language, or mild censure, from you to him: Will he pardon me if I add that I look with grave doubts upon his advice to newsdealers to join the Knights of Labor? His own powerful pen has often clearly pointed out in these columns the evils of that organization and of all others similar to it. And further own you say: A significant hint of what may be expected from the Knights of Labor is to be found in the addres (From:
Play-House Philanthropy. [Liberty, November 26, 1881.] Among the ablest and most interesting contributions to the columns of the Irish World are the sketches of one of its staff correspondents, Honorious, in which that writer, week after week, with all the skill and strategy of a born general, marshals anecdote, illustration, history, biography, fact, logic, and the experiences of everyday life in impregnable line of battle, and precipitates them upon the cohorts of organized tyranny and theft, making irreparable breaches in their fortifications, and spreading havoc throughout their ranks. The ingenuity which he displays in utilizing his material and turning everything to the account of his cause is marvelous. Out of each new fact that... (From:
Beware of Batterson! [Liberty, March 6, 1886.] Gertrude B. Kelly, who, by her articles in Liberty, has placed herself at a single bound among the foremost radical writers of this or any other country, exposes elsewhere in a masterful manner the unique scheme of one Batterson, an employer of labor in Westerly, R. I., which he calls cooperation. But there is one feature of this scheme, the most iniquitous of all, which needs still further emphasis. It is to be found in the provision which stipulates that no workman discharged for good cause or leaving the employ of the company without the written consent of the superintendent shall be allowed even that part of the annual dividend to labor to which he is entitled by such labor as he has a... (From:
A Gratifying Discovery. [Liberty, May 31, 1884.] Liberty made its first appearance in August, 1881. Of that issue a great many sample copies were mailed to selected addresses all over the world. Not one of these, however, was sent from this office directly to Nantucket, for I had never heard of a radical on that island. But, through some channel or other, a copy found its way thither; for, before the second number had been issued, an envelope bearing the Nantucket postmark came to me containing a greeting for Liberty, than which the paper has had none since more warm, more hearty, more sympathetic, more intelligent, more appreciative.(169 ¶ 1) But the letter was anonymous. Its style and language, however, (From:
Cases of Lamentable Longevity. [Liberty, March 31, 1888.] The Emperor William is dead at the age of ninety-one. His was a long life, and that is the worst of it. Much may be forgiven to a tyrant who has the decency to die young. But the memory of one who thus prolongs and piles up the agony no mercy can be shown. As Brick Pomeroy says, there is no such a thing as enough. In ninety-one years of such a man as William, Germany and the world had altogether too much. However, it is not kings alone that live too long. That awful fate sometimes befalls poets. Among others it has overtaken Walt Whitman. That he should live long enough to so far civilize his barbaric yawp as to sound it over the roofs of the world to bewail Germany’s loss... (From:
Spooner Memorial Resolutions.[21] [Liberty, May 27, 1887.] Resolved: That Lysander Spooner, to celebrate whose life and to lament whose death we meet to-day, built for himself, by his half century’s study and promulgation of the science of justice, a monument which no words of ours, however eloquent, can make more lasting or more lofty; that each of his fifty years and more of manhood work and warfare added so massive a stone to the column of his high endeavor that now it towers beyond our reach; but that nevertheless it is meet, for our own satisfaction and the world’s welfare, that we who knew him best should place on record and proclaim as publicly as we may our admiration, honor, and reverence for his exceptional charac... (From:
On Picket Duty. Every man’s labor, says the New York Nation, is worth what some other man will do it equally well for, and no more. That is to say, if one man demands for his labor the whole product thereof, he cannot have it because some other man is satisfied to perform the same labor for half of the product. But in that case what becomes of the other half of the product? Who is entitled to it, and what has he done to entitle him to it? Every man’s labor is worth what it produces, and would command that, if all men were free. There is no natural rate for telegraphers any more than for bookkeepers or teamsters, continues the Nation. No more, truly; but just as much. The natural rate of wages for ten hours of telegraphing or b... (From:


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