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both of mind and heart. Of Karl Marx, in his private life, little is known, but his works display much painstaking study, independence of thought, and unflinching principle.

What is most remarkable, however, in these socialistic leaders, is that implicit faith in their own theories which “removes mountains.” It inspires an intoxicating confidence in the approaching victory of their convictions, which leads them to expect social changes far more sweeping than those brought about by the French Revolution. The same faith has communicated itself already to hundreds of enthusiastic followers. Lassalle could hear already in spirit the heavy and united tread of those labour-battalions who, at the leaders' nod, would rally in thousands round a common centre.

And, as a matter of fact, does not socialism in its external aspect represent a great party with an imposing organization ? Let trades unions answer the question ! In England they are reaching their fullest development. Here thousands of working men are being organized into an army of resistance, to oppose, with tactical skill, enterprising large capital. The same combinations prevail on the continent, though in lesser proportions. We hear constantly of strikes in different parts of Europe; and strikes are the weapons of the labourer in his conflict with the employer to extort better wages. To quell this movement by retrogressive legislation and the abolishing of coalition liberty, would only lead, as it has done before, to the founding of societies under another name (friendly and benevolent institutions), more dangerous because more secret. After futile attempts at suppression, the antagonism between labour and capital would only revive with mightier force and greater revolutionary tension. Therefore we consider that this movement challenges a

SOCIALISM AND SOCIAL REFORMS.

9

full, fair, calm, and immediate consideration. To hush it up or forcibly suppress it is out of the question, for it has now attained European notoriety. Indeed there are persons among the more educated and moneyed classes, who, thinking their own private interests at stake, and afraid of any attempt to curtail their own prerogatives, cry out at once that an attack is made against crown and altar, or the constitutional edifice.

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There are sentimental people, overflowing with liberal phrases on all occasions, who yet shrink from debate on the amelioration of the working classes. They are like those feudal lords of France who identified their cause with that of Church and State, and hurled down at last crown and altar along with themselves into ruin. But happily there are those too who opine that socialism may be conquered by carefully prepared reforms.

If we would shield private property against extravagant socialistic attacks, we must give a fair hearing to our opponents. We must acknowledge truths, however unwelcome, if founded on fact and scientific research. A rose-coloured apology for capital and its unhealthy excrescences, where censure and redress are called for, would be entirely useless, and worse than that. For the conversion of pseudo-conservatives, who hope to stamp out the socialistic movement by main force, using bullets for arguments, these pages are not therefore intended. They will find a cordial reception among those who desire justice, conciliation, and the prevention of a social revolution by a social reform.

BOOK I.

RÉSUMÉ OF SOME OF THE LEADING PRINCIPLES OF POLITICAL ECONOMY, SPECIALLY WITH REGARD TO SOCIALISTIC

LITERATURE.

CHAPTER I.

Query: Is Labour the Source of all Wealth P– Definition of

Capital.—Production and Consumption.-Fundamental Laws

of Political Economy. In order to judge accurately, and to form an opinion on sufficient data respecting the “antagonism between capital and labour in our day," we must have clear ideas on the subject of political economy. And the first steps towards a study of the leading principles of social science must of necessity be less entertaining, and accompanied with a certain amount of mental exertion. But we cannot spare the reader this trouble, for in the investigation of social problems it is of the utmost importance to understand thoroughly the terms employed in stating the fundamental truths of the science. A close perusal of the works and public speeches of social, democratic agitators will show how by a confusion of ideas, and the employment of words used in diverse senses, the judgment is often warped, and truth is often misrepresented. We must on this account prepare the way by arming the reader with a few definitions of terms here employed, and pointing out the misapplication of them by socialists or

LABOUR REPRESENTS HUMAN LIFE-FORCE.

11

other political writers. In the first place then let us inquire : What is the object, and what are the laws, of economy? In answer to this it must be stated that man, placed as he is in an endless chain of being, requires for his continued existence the co-operation of the outer world. He requires the reciprocal acts of fellow-men in the shape of services, and he requires certain inanimate commodities which sustain, cheer, and embellish his individual life. In a word every member of society requires external instruments and means, in order to live and develop those powers which nature has implanted. And those means are of a twofold nature: those which can be obtained without, and those which cannot be obtained without, exertion or expenditure of force. Air is free, and though indispensable to life can be had without exertion. But there are other necessaries of life, equally indispensable, but more difficult of attainment, as for example-bread, clothing, and the like; these are the result of labour. But labour is human life-force expended in order to obtain the means of livelihood. Now these instruments for the sustenance of life are called economic commodities, and they are the objects of the science of economy; and in a wider sense, extending the science of economizing means to a state—i.e. political society,-it becomes the science of political economy. Now these economic commodities may be regarded, as equivalents of life-force expended in calling them into existence, as so much labour. Socialists lay much stress upon this. According to their opinion every article purchased in the market represents so much human labour, no more and no less.

Moreover they assert that whoever in the necessary transactions of commerce, barter, or exchange, makes an unfavourable bargain, receiving back that which represents less of life-force for that which he has

expended, loses actually so much life. For example, a working population, receiving as å rule for their actual labour less value in return of their services in the shape of wages (in money or kind) than what is tantamount to their expenditure of life-force, are slowly consumed by those who overreach them. Anthropophagy is thus possible in civilized countries, a cruel slowly-consuming cannibalism under cover of exchange in services for goods. And all are guilty in this sense who do appropriate other men's labour by curtailing their reward, all who make an inadequate return for the amount of life expended by the labourers. Thus philanthropic Europe, co-operating for a time with the American slaveowners, consumed so much nigger flesh and blood in the shape of cheap sugar, tobacco, and cotton goods; on this account socialistic economists wish us to look away from commodities in their concrete form, as articles of commerce, and to regard them barely as quanta of labour. Thus, they say, if you exchange a hundredweight of iron for two yards of stuff you scarcely know who is the gainer or the loser. But once ascertain that a hundredweight of iron is equivalent to five days of labour, and two yards of stuff are equivalent to three days of labour, and you will clearly perceive a clear loss on the part of the producer of iron. Now under cover of wages, it is asserted, the labourer is injured incessantly in this manner, the whole and true value of labour produce is only in part refunded to the working man, and under the mask of exchange he is deprived of his due. This deception the socialist exposes by a comparison of the work and wages for any given day, and shows the inequality of the price of commodities and the labour they entail. For the same reason the use of money as concealing the true proportion between the value of labour and the cost of its results in

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