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feature of our development we have already seen. And just as clearly may we see that from the same cause spring poverty and pauperism. The tramp is the complement of the millionaire.Henry George.

In a rude and violent state of society it continually happens that the person who has capital is not the very person who has saved it, but some one who, being stronger, or belonging to a more powerful community, has possessed himself of it by plunder. And even in a state of things several degrees more advanced, the increase of capital has been in a great measure derived from privations which, though essentially the same with saving, are not generally called by that name, because not vol. untary. The actual producers have been slaves, compelled to produce as much as force could extort from them, and to consume as little as self-interest, or the usually very slender humanity of their task-masters, would permit:- John Stuart Mill.

Now, John, what are the evils of which we complain? Lowness of wages, length of working hours, uncertainty of employment, insecurity of the future, low standards of public health and morality, prevalence of pauperism and crime, and the existence of false ideals of life.

I will give you a few examples of the things I mean. It is estimated that in this country, with its population of 36,000,000, there are generally about 700,000 men out of work. There are about 800,000 paupers. Of every thousand persons who die in Merrie England over nine hundred die without leaving any property at all. About 8,000,000 people exist always on the borders of destitution. About 20,000,000 are poor. More than half the national income belongs to about 10,000 people. About 30,000 people own fifty-five fifty-sixths of the land and capital of the kingdom, but of 36,000,000 of people only 1,500,000 get above £3 a week. The average income per head of the working classes is about £17 a year, or less than is. a day. There are millions of our people working under conditions and living in homes that are simply disgraceful. The sum of crime, vice, drunkenness, gambling, prostitution, idleness, ignorance, want, disease, and death is appalling.

These are facts. They are facts which stare us in the face in every town, and at all hours of the day and night. They are facts so well known that I need not rake the Blue Books for statistics to confirm them. I wish to use as few figures a: possible. I also wish to avoid angry words. Therefore, Mr. Smith, I simply point out these evils and ask you as a practical and honest man whether you don't think they ought to be rem edied.

To what are the above evils due? They are due to the unequal distribution of wealth, and to the absence of justice and order from our society.


Consider, first, the distribution of the annual earnings. The following figures are given on the authority of Giffen, Levi, and Mulholland: Gross national earnings..

•£1,350,000,000 Amount paid in rent....

Amount paid in interest.

Salaries of middle-classes and profits of
employers, etc........

Wages of the working classes...

500,000,000 That is to say, the workers earn £1,350,000,000. Of that the rich take, in rent and interest, £490,000,000, and the rich and middle-classes, in profits and salaries, take another £360,000,000, or a total of £850,000,000, leaving for the working classes little more than one-third (£500,000,000).

Now for the proportions. As I said just now, there are less than 1,500,000 who pay income tax on incomes of £150 a year and upward. Multiply 1,500,000 by 3 and you get 4,500,000 as the gross number of men, women, and children of the middle and upper classes. 4,500,000 is just one-eighth of our popula. tion. Thus we find that £850,000,000 go to one-eighth of the population, and 500,000,000 to the other seven-eighths.

Speaking in round numbers the averages per head are as follow: Middle and upper classes, per year, £184; working classes, per year, £16.

The following diagram will give you an idea of the inequality of this division : CLASSES.

INCOME. * * * * * * * * *

* * * * * * * * *

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But this is not the worst. Besides the fact that the upper anu middle classes take nearly two-thirds of the wealth which the masses earn, there is the fact that those classes, and probably less than a tenth of those classes, actually own all the land and all the instruments by which wealth can be produced.

Political orators and newspaper editors are very fond of talking to you about “your country.” Now, Mr. Smith, it is a hard practical fact that you have no country. The British Islands do not belong to the British people; they belong to a few thou. sands--certainly not half a million-of rich men.


These men not only own the land, they own, also, the rivers and lakes, the mines and minerals, the farms and orchards, the trees and thickets; the cattle and horses, and sheep and pigs, and poultry and game; the mills, factories, churches, houses, shops, railways, trains, ships, machinery; and, in fact, nearly everything except the bodies and souls of the workers, and, as I will try to show you, they have almost complete power over these.

Yes, not only do the rich own the land, and all the buildings and machinery, but also, and because they own those things, they have reduced the workers to a condition of dependence.

For you know very well that it is true of nearly all our working men that they cannot work when they choose to work, but must first find a rich man-a capitalist—who is willing to employ them.

This is because the capitalists own the land and the tools. What can the plowman do without the land and the plow; or the collier without the pit and the machinery; or the weaver without the loom and the factory?

You know that in these days of machinery there are hardly any men who own the tools of their own trade. And if they did they would be helpless; for they must sell their work in a market where the capitalist competes with them, and where he will undersell them, even if he loses by the sale, and so make it impossible for them to live.

Rent, interest, private ownership, machinery, and competition are all instruments in the hands of the capitalist, and with those instruments he compels the worker to give np nearly all his earnings in return for permission to work.

You are an agricultural laborer. I own a piece of land. You come to me and beg for “work.” I “engage" you at 155. a week, and all you produce is mine. You are a slave, for if you quit my employ you must starve; and although I have no whip or chain, I have that which serves as well to compel you to work hard, that is to say, I have power to turn you off the land. So if you are a cotton operative, and I own a cotton mill. You must come to me and ask for work. If I refuse it, you must starve. If I offer it, you must take it at any price. Oh, yes, you can form a trade union, and strike, refusing to accept my price. In that case I may give you rather more than I offered, because it will pay me better to let you have half the money you earn and be content myself with the other half than to let you remain idle and so make nothing by you at all. But you know I can always beat you, for I have enough to live upon in idleness, and you have nothing.

Well, it is true that the land and all the mines, mills, houses, and machinery, that is to say, the "land" and "capital"-of

this country are owned by a few rich people. And it is urged in defense of this private ownership of the “means of livelihood" that, in the first place, the rich have a "right” to their possessions; and, in the second place, that the rich use these possessions to the general advantage.

Both these statements are untrue.

First, as to the rich man's ‘right” to his wealth. I suppose that ou, as a sensible and honest man, will admit this principle: viz., that a man has a "right" to that which he has produced by the unaided exercise of his own faculties; but that he has not a right to that which is not produced by his own unaided faculties; nor to the whole of that which has been produced by his faculties aided by the faculties of another man.

If you admit the above principle, then I think I can prove to you that no man has a right to the private ownership of a single square foot of land; and that no man could of his own efforts produce more private property than is commonly possessed by a monkey or a bear.

We will begin with the land; and you will find that the original title to all the land possessed by private owners is the title of conquest or theft.

There are four chief ways in which land may become private property. It may be confiscated by force; it may be filched by fraud; it may be received as a gift; or it may be bought with money.

Of the land held by our rich peers the greater part has been plundered from the church, stolen from the commonlands, or received in gifts from the Crown. If you will buy a little book called “Our Old Nobility," price is., published by H. Vic rs, Strand, London, you will begin to have an idea of the ways in which our “noble" families got possession of their estates. From that book I quote the following lines:

“ The Fitzroys are certainly descended from one of the vilest of women - Barbara Palmer, wife of Lord Castlemaine, and mistress of Charles II.

One of Charles' ministers was Henry Bennet, Earl of Arlington, whose only daughter was married at the mature age of twelve to young Fitzroy, the son of Barbara Palmer and Charles II. Ample provision was made for the young couple. In 1673 Charles granted to the Earl of Arlington for life, and to Fitzroy and his wife afterward, a very extensive tract of Crown land, viz., the lordship and manor of Grafton, manor of Hartwell, and lands in Hartwell, Roade, and Hanslope, manors of Alderton, Blisworth, Stoke Bruerne, Greene's Norton, Potterspury, Ashton, Paulerspury, part of Charcomb Priory, lands in Grimscott, Houghton Parva, Northampton, Hardingston, and Shuttlehanger, parcel of Sewardsley Prie ory, the office and fee of the honor of Grafton, and the forests of Salcey and Whittlebury (reserving the timber to the Crown). This extraordinary grant will account for the large estates of the Fitzroys in Northamptonshire and Bucks. The Fitzroys inherit their Suffolk estates from the Earl of Arlington. This patriotic statesman, who formed one of the notorious Cabal ministry,' not content with taking bribes from the King of France, and with the lucrative posts of secretary of state, keeper of the privy purse, and postmaster-general, managed to secure for himself a number of valuable grants, as is shown by the state papers in the record office, among which were a moiety of the estates of a former Earl of Lenox, and several manors in the county of Wicklow. He also obtained a lease of Marylebone Park on ad. vantageous terms, and another lease of three-fourths of Great St. John's Wood at an annual rental of £21 6s. 2d. No wonder that he was able to purchase Euston Hall and the surrounding lands. One of his Suffolk lordships was formerly part of the possessions of St. Edmund's Abbey, though whether acquired by grant or purchase is not clear. Charles II was not content with giving away Crown lands in the wholesale manner above described; the children of his harlots were further provided for at the public expense. The Duke of Grafton, for instance, had an hereditary pension of £9,000 a year granted from the excise, and £4,700 a year from the postoffice, which continued to be paid till a comparatively recent date. The former pension was redeemed in 1858 by a payment of £193,777, and the latter in 1856 by a payment of £91,181. There was also a very lucrative sinecure in the family, which the Duke of Grafton surrendered in 1795 for an annuity of £870 a year-an arrangement ratified by the Act 46, Geo. III, cap. 89.

I want you to read that book, and also Henry George's " Progress and Poverty” and “Social Problems."

But leaving the men who have stolen the land, or got it by force, or fraud, let us consider the title of those who have bought the land. Many people have bought land, and paid for it. Have they a right to it?

No, they have no right to that land, and for these two reasons: 1. They bought it of some one who had no right to sell it.

2. They paid for it with money which they themselves had never earned.

Land, you will observe, is the gift of Nature. It is not made by man. Now, if a man has a right to nothing but that which he has himself made, no man can have a right to the land, for no man made it.

It would be just as reasonable for a few families to claim possession of the sea and the air, and charge their fellow creatures

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