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function of prohibiting and punishing such conduct on the part of individuals in the exercise of their freedom as is clearly injurious to other persons, whether the case be one of force, fraud,or negligence. Even in the best state which society has yet reached/it is lamentable to think how great a proportion of all the efforts and talents in the world are employed in merely neutralizing one another. It is the proper end of government to reduce this wretched waste to the smallest possible amount, by taking such measures as shall cause the energies now spent by mankind in injuring one another, or in protecting themselves against injury, to be turned to the legitimate employment of the human faculties, that of compelling the powers of nature to be more and more subservient to physical and moral good.1
1 [See Appendix MM, Limit* of the Sphere of Government.]
For the history of economic investigation and discussion since the publication of Mill's Principles in 1848, the only general work to which reference can be made in English is Palgrave's Dictionary of Political Economy (1894-1908), which contains many useful articles under the headings of the various subjects and authors. Readers^of French will obtain some assistance from Block, Les Progres de la Science Economique depute Adam Smith (1890), representing the strictest school of French orthodoxy, and from Gide and Rist, Histoire des Doctrines Economiqiies (1909), written from a more modern point of view. Readers of German will naturally refer to Conrad's Handwbrterbuch der Staatswissenschaften, of which the third and enlarged edition is now being issued; and they will find a number of valuable reviews of the course of discussion of the several main topics in the series of monographs brought together under the title Die Entwicklung der deutschen Volkswirthscliaftslehre im neunzehnten Jahrhundert (1908).
A.—The Mebcantile System (p. 6)
Mill's account is based on that of Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations, bk. iv. ch. i. Much investigation has subsequently taken place into mercantilist literature and policy, some results of which may be seen in Roscher, Geschichte der National-Oekonomik in Deutschland (1874), § 57, closely followed (with a Positivist colouring) by Ingram, History of Political Economy (1888); in Schmoller, The Mercantile System and its Historical Significance (1884; Eng. trans. 1896), and Grundrtes der Allgemeinen Volkswirthschaft.slehre (1900), i. § 39 (in French trans., Principes d'Economie Politigue (1905-1908), i. § 39); in Cunningham, Growth of English Industry and Commerce, vol. ii. pt. i., The Mercantile System (1903); and in Unwin, Industrial Organisation in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries (1904). One of the most significant of English mercantilist writings, Mun's England's Treasure by Forraign Trade (1664), has been recently republished (1895).
B.—The Defikition Of Wealth (p. 9)
Mill's definition has been criticised, from very different points of view, by Jevons, Principles of Economics (posthumously published, 1905), p. 14; Nicholson, Principles of Political Economy, i. (1893), Introduction; and Ruskin, Unto this Last (1862), Preface, and Munera Pulveris (1863), Preface. For a recent classification of "desirable things," see Marshall, Principles of Economics (1890; 5th ed. 1907), bk. ii. ch. 2. Sidgwick, Principles of Political Economy (1883), bk. i. ch. ii., points out that, though in England " Wealth " has commonly been regarded as the most fundamental conception'in Political Economy, it has also been commonly held that it should be defined by the characteristic of possessing " Value," so that it would seem more logical " to begin by attempting to get a precise conception of this characteristic." For difficulties attaching to "Richesse," as the French equivalent of "Wealth," see Gide, Cours d'Economie Politiqne (1.909), p. 47. [By the earlier French economic writers, however, the term was used in the plural, as in Turgot's Reflexions sur la Formation et la Distribution des Richesses (1770: trans, by Ashley, 1898).]
The German language possesses no one inclusive term like "Wealth"; and German economists have long been accustomed to begin with the definition of "goods" (Outer) and, in consequence, of "a good" (G,ut)—enjoying, in the use of the latter term, an advantage not available in current English speech. For characteristic examples reference may be made to Wagner, Lehrbuch der Politischen Oekonomie, Grundlagen (3rd ed. 1892), I, bk. ii. ch. i.; or Conrad, Grundriss zum Studium der Politischen Oekonomie (6th ed. 1907), § 5. The phrases "goods," "economic goods," "an economic good," and so on, have of late years made their way into English and still more into American economic writings; see, for instance, Marshall (as above), and Clark, Essentials of Economic Theory (1907), ch. 2; and cf. Pierson, Principles of Economics (Eng. trans. 1902), pi.' i. ch. i.
C.—The Types Of Society (p. 20)
Mill's brief sketch of the general economic development of humanity is a masterly one. But since his time there has been a vast amount of work done, especially in Germany, in the field of economic history. The best introduction to the subject is now Schmoller's Grundriss, bk. ii. (occupying the second volume of the French trans., Principes). A very suggestive treatment of certain aspects of the subject is presented in a brief compass in Biicher, Entslehung der Vol/cswirthschaft (Eng. trans, under the title Industrial Evolution, N. Y. 1901); which receives some necessary correction and is supplemented in important respects by Meyer, Die ivirthschaftliche Entwickelung des Alterthums, Vortrag, 1895, and Die Sklaverei im Alterthum, Vortrag, 1898; and by v. Below, Vber Theorien der wirthschaftlichen Entwicklung der Volker, in Historische Zeitschrift, Lxxxvi. (N. F. L). The best general work in English is Cunningham's Western Civilisation in its Economic Aspects; Ancient Times (1898), Mediaeval and Modern Times (1900). Seligman, Principles of Economics (1905), part ii. bks. ii. and in., brings together a great many instructive apercus in a short compass.
D.—Productive And Unproductive Labour (p. 53)
The distinction was taken from Adam Smith, Wealth of Nations, bk. ii. ch. 3, who derived the words themselves from the French Physiocrats, though he used them in a different sense. It has been criticised by Jevons, Principles, ch. xviii., and Cannan, History of the Theories of Production and Distribution (1893), ch. i. § 7; and it is now but little used. Cf. Marshall, bk. ii. ch. 3.
E.—The Definition Of Capital (p. 62)
A good introduction to the large contentious literature on this subject is Schnioller, (Grundriss, ii. § 182 c (in the French trans. Principes, iii. pp. 409seq.); which makes use of the material collected in Bohm-Bawerk, The Positive Theory of Capital (Eng. trans. 1891), bk. i. ch. 3. As Wagner, Grundlagen, § 129, h$s pointed out, the conception of capital is twofold—economical and historical (cf. Gide, Cours, bk. i. ch. 3); the latter aspect was emphasised by Lassalle in his proposition that " Capital is a historical category." An account in English of the history of the conception will be found in Marshall, i. App. E, and in Taussig, Wages and Capital (N. Y. 1896), ch. 2. Clark, Distribution of Wealth (1902), ch. 9, distinguishes between "Capital" and " Capital Goods." Fisher, The Nature of Capital and Income (1906), defines Capital as " a stock of wealth existing at a moment of time,"—which would seem to identify Capital with Wealth generally; while Gibson, Human Economics (1909), defines Capital from the business point of view as "everything in which an individual or group has a legal estate and for which there is a buyer's valuation."
F.—Fundamental Propositions On Capital (p. 90)
For destructive criticism of these propositions see Jevons, Principles, ch. xxiv.; Sidgwick, Principles, bk. i. ch. 5, note; and Nicholson, Principles, i. pp. 98 seq. The first and fourth of them, as stated by Mill, are only other aspects of his Wages Fund doctrine, and, according to Marshall, Principles, i. App. J, "express his meaning badly."
G.—Division And Combination Of Labour (p. 131)
This subject, when further examined, widens out into the two far larger topics of economic differentiation and co-operation, which are themselves to a large extent but different aspects of the same process. In this sense it is philosophically treated with a great command of the results of recent investigations, in Schmoller, Grundriss, i. §§ 113 seq. (in Fr. trans. Principes, ii. pp. 248 seq.).
H.—Large And Small Farming (p. 154)
On this problem, so far as England is concerned, it lias to be remembered: (1) that the substitution of large for small farming in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries was closely associated with the movement for the enclosure of the " open" or intermixed fields; see hereon, Slater, The English Peasantry and the Enclosure of Common Fields (1907), and Hasbach, A History of the English Agricultural Labourer (Eng. trans. 1908); and (2) that the position of affairs has been greatly affected since Mill wrote by the shock to "cereal farming " caused by the influx of cheap American grain in the eighties; hereon see Levy, Entstehung und Ruckgang des landu.irthschaftlichen Grrossbetriebes in England (1904). Materials for an opinion on the economic prospects of small farming in England are to be found in Lawesand Gilbert, Allotments and Small Holdings, in Journal of the Royal Agric. Soc., vol. iii. 3rd series (1892); in the Report of a Departmental Committee on Small Holdings (1906); and in Jebb, The Small Holdings of England (1907). They are evidently bound upto some extent with the prospects of agricultural co-operation (in the purchase of fertilisers, the sale of produce, &c.), of which an account is given in Pratt, The Organisation of Agriculture (1905), and in the publications of the Agricultural Organisation Society. A general comparison of Large, and Small Farming following, criticising, and supplementing that of Mill is presented by Nicholson, Principles, i. (1893) bk. i. ch. 9.