Crowds - A Moving-Picture of Democracy
by Gerald Stanley Lee
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The way to get over a small motive is to let it get lost in a big one.

A man does not stop to pick up a penny or a million dollars when he is running to save his life.

A man does not stop to pick up two pennies, or two thousand dollars, or two million dollars when he is running to save ten thousand lives or running to save ninety million lives, when he is running to save a city or a nation.

This is Conversion—entering into the World's Womb, the world's vision or expectation and being born again.

* * * * *

It is not for nothing that I have seen the sun lifting up the faces of the flowers, and crumbling the countenances of the hills. And I have seen music stirring faintly in the bones of old men. And I have heard the dead Beethoven singing in the feet of children.

And I have watched the Little Earth in its little round of seasons dancing before the Lord.

And I have believed that music is wrought into all things, and that the people I see about me have not one of them been left out.

I believe in sunshine and in hothouses. I believe in burning glasses. I believe in focusing light into heat and heat into white fire, and turning white fire into little flowing brooks of steel.

And I believe in focusing men upon men.

I believe in Conversion.

Of course it would all be different—focusing men upon men, if men were cogs and wheels, or if the men they were focused on were made of stones.

I stand and look at this stone and believe it is all rubber and whalebone inside.

But what of it?

It does not get true.

While I am looking at a man and believing a certain thing about the man, it gets true.

What is going on in my mind while I look at him effects actual mechanical changes in him, affects the flow of blood in his veins. A look colours him, whitens him, twists and turns the muscles and tissues in his body. I draw lines upon his inmost being. I lay down a new face upon his face. A moment after I look upon the man's face it has become, as it were, or may have become, a new little landscape. I have seen a great country opened up in him of what he might be like. While I look I have been ushered softly, for a second, into the presence of a man who was not there before.

Such things have happened.

Beatrice looked at Dante once. Ten silent centuries began singing.

A man named Stephen, one day, while he was dying, gave a look at a man named Paul. Paul came away quietly and hewed out history for two thousand years.



A bicycle, the other day, a little outside Paris as it was running along quietly, lifted itself off the ground suddenly, and flew three yards and seven inches.

There are nine million seven hundred and eighty nine thousand nine hundred and seventy-nine bicycles that have not flown three yards and seven inches.

But what of it? Why count them up? Why bother about them? The important, conclusive, massive, irresistible, crushing, material fact is that one bicycle has flown three yards seven inches.

The nine million seven hundred and eighty-nine thousand nine hundred and seventy-nine bicycles that can not fly yet are negligible. So are nine out of ten business firms.

If there is one exceptional man in modern industry who is running his business in the right way and who has made a success of it and has proved it—he may look visionary to class-socialists and to other people who decide by measuring off masses of fact, and counting up rows of people and who see what anybody can see, but he is after all in arranging our social programme the only man of any material importance for us to consider. It would be visionary to take the past, dump it around in front of one, and try to make a future out of it. I do not deny what people tell me about millionaires and about factory slaves. I have not mooned or lied or turned away my face. I stand by time one live, right, implacable, irrevocable, prolific exception. I stand by the one bicycle out of them all that has flown three yards and seven inches. I lay out my program, conceive my world on that. Piles of facts arranged in dead layers high against heaven, rows of figures, miles of factory slaves, acres of cemeteries of dead millionaires, going-by streetfuls of going-by people, shall not cow me.

My heart has been broken long enough by counting truths on my fingers, by numbering grains of sand, men, and mountains, bombs, acorns and marbles alike.

Which truth matters?

Which man is right?

Where is Nazareth?

* * * * *

Nazareth is our only really important town now. I will see what is going on in Nazareth. On every subject that comes up, in every line of thought, I will go to the city of implacable exceptions. All the inventors flock there—the man with the one bicycle which flies, the one great industrial organizer, the man with the man-machine, and the man—the great boy who carries new great beautiful cities in his pocket like strings and nails and knives, they are all there.

Nazareth is the city, the one mighty little city of the spirit where all the really worth-while men wherever they may seem to be, all day, all night, do their living.

Other cities may make things, in Nazareth they make worlds. One can see a new one almost any day in Nazareth. Men go up and down the streets there with their new worlds in their eyes.

Some of them have them almost in their hands or are looking down and working on them.

It does not seem to me that any of us can make ourselves strong and fit to lay out a sound program or vision for a world, who do not watch with critical expectation and with fierce joy these men of Nazareth, who do not take at least a little time off every day, in spirit, in Nazareth, and spend it in watching bicycles fly three feet and seven inches. To watch these men, it seems to me, is our one natural, economical way to get at essential facts, at the set-one-side truths, at the exceptions that worlds and all-around programs for worlds are made out of. To watch these men is the one way I know not to be lost in great museums and storehouses of facts that do not matter, in the streetfuls and skyscraperfuls of men that go by.

I regret to record that professors of political economy, social philosophers, industrial big-wigs, presidents of boards of trade have not been often met with on the streets of this silent, crowded, mighty, invisible little town that rules the destinies of men.

Not during the last twenty years, but one is meeting them there to-day.

All these things that people are saying to me are mere history. I have seen the one live exception. One telephone was enough. And one Galileo was enough, with his little planet turning round and round, with all of us on it who were obliged to agree with him about it. It kept turning round and round with us until we did.



If I were a Noah and wanted to get a fair selection of people in London to be saved to start a new world, I would go out and look over the crowd who are watching the flying machines at Hendon, and select from them.

The Hendon crowd will not last forever. People who would be far less desirable to start worlds with would gradually work their way in, but it is only fair to say that these first few thousand men and women of all classes who responded to the flying machine would be possessed, as any one could see with a look, of special qualifications for running worlds.

I shall never quite forget the sense I had the first day of the crowd at Hendon—those thousands of faces that had gathered up in some way out of themselves a kind of huge crowd-face before one—that imperturbable happiness on it and that look of hard sense and hope, half poetry, half science ... it was like gazing at some portrait, or some vast countenance of the future—watching the crowd at Hendon. Scores of times I looked away from the machines swinging up past me into the sky to watch the faces of the men and the women that belonged with sky machines; these men and women who stood on the precipice of a new world of air, of sunshine, and of darkness, and were not afraid.

One was in a little special civilization for the time being, all the new people in it sorted out from the old ones. One felt a vast light-heartedness all about. One was in the presence of the picked people who had come to see this first vast initiative of man toward Space, toward the stars, the people who had waited for four thousand years to see it; to see at last Little Man (as it would seem to God) in this his first clumsy, beautiful childlike tottering up the sky.

One was with the people on the planet who were the first to see the practical, personal value, the market value, of all these huge idle fields of air that go with planets. They were the first people to feel identified with the air, to have courage for the air, the lovers of initiative, the men and women that one felt might really get a new world if they wanted one and who would know what to do with it when they got it.

* * * * *

The other day in London near Charing Cross, as the crowds were streaming down the Strand, a heavy box joggled off over the end of a dray, crashed to the pavement, flew open and sent twenty-four hundred pennies rolling under the feet of the men and of the women and of the boys along the street.

Traffic was stopped and a thousand men and women and boys began picking the pennies up. They all crowded up around the dray and put the pennies in the box.

The next day the brewer to whom the pennies belonged had a letter in the Times saying that not one of the twenty-four hundred pennies was missing.

He closed his letter with a few moral remarks, announced that he had sent the twenty-four hundred pennies as a kind of tribute to people—to anybody Who Happened Along the Strand—to a Foundling Hospital.

* * * * *

The man who told me this (it was at a business men's dinner), told it because he knew I was trying to believe pleasant things about human nature. He thought he ought to encourage me.

I will not record the conversation, I merely record my humble opinion.

I think it would have been better to have had just a few of those pennies in the Strand say seven or eight missing.

On Broadway probably eleven or twelve out of twenty-four hundred would have been missing—I hope.

And I am not unhopeful about England, or about the Strand.

There are two ways to get relief from this story.

First, the brewer lied. There were fewer pennies stolen than he would have thought, and when he figured it out and found just a few pennies between him and a good story, he put the pennies in. And so the dear little foundlings got them—the letter in the Times said. They were presented to them, as it were, by the Good Little Boys in the Strand.

Second, somebody else put the pennies in, some person standing by with a sense of humour, who knew the letters that people write to the Times and the kind, serious, grave way English people read them. He put the pennies grimly in at one end, then he waited grimly for the letter in the Times to come out at the other.

Either of these theories would work very well and let the crowd off.

But if they are disproved to me, I have one more to fall back upon.

If the story is true and not a soul in that memorable crowd on that memorable day stole a penny, it was because they had all, as it happened in that particular crowd, stolen their pennies before, and got over it. It would seem a great pity if there had not been some one boy with enough initiative in him, enough faculty for moral experiment, to try stealing a penny just once, to see what it would be like.

The same boy would have seen at once what it was like, tried feeling ashamed of it promptly, and would never have had to bother to do it again. He would have felt that penny burning in his pocket past cash drawers, past banks, past bonds, until he became President of the United States.

At all events the last thing that I would be willing to believe is that either America or England would be capable of producing a chance crowd in the street that out of sheer laziness or moral thoughtlessness would not be able to work up at least one boy in it who would have a sudden flash of imagination about a penny rolling around a man's leg—if he picked it up and—did not put it in the box.

The crowd in the Strand, of course, like any other real crowd, was a stew of development, a huge laboratory of people. All stages of experience were in it.

Some of the people in the crowd that day had a new refreshing thought, when they saw those pennies rolling around everybody. They thought they would try and see what stealing a penny was like. Then they did it.

Others in the crowd thought of stealing a penny too, and then they had still another thought. They thought of not stealing it. And this second thought interested them more.

Others did not think of stealing a penny at all because they had thought of it so often before had got used to it and had got used to dismissing it.

Others thought of stealing a penny and then they thought how ashamed they were of having thought of it. Others looked thoughtfully at the pennies and thought they would wait for guineas.

But whatever it was or may have been that was taking place in that crowd that day—they all thought.

And after all what is really important to a nation is that the people in it—any chance crowd in a street in it should think. I confess I care very little one way or the other about the pennies being saved, or about the brewer's little touch of moral poetry, his idea that this particular crowd was solid Sunday-school from one end to the other, all through. Whether it was a crowd that thought of stealing a penny and did or did not, if the pennies rolling around among their feet made them think, made them experiment, played upon the initiative, the individuality or invention in them, the personal self-control, the social responsibility in them, it was a crowd to be proud of. And I am glad, for one, that the box of pennies was dumped in the street.

I would like to see shillings tried next time.

Then guineas might be used.

A box of guineas dumped in the street would do more good than a box of pennies because there are many people who would think more with the guineas rolling around out of sight around a man's legs than they would with a penny's doing it.

In this way a box of guineas would do more good.

* * * * *

Thousands of men and women that we have sent to India from this Western World have been trying with Bibles, and good deeds, and kind faces, and Sunday-schools to get the Hindoos to believe that it would not be a sin to kill the rats and stop the bubonic plague.

Nothing came of it.

In due time General Booth-Tucker appeared on the scene.

He came too, of course, with a Bible and with his kind face like the others, and of course, too, he went to Sunday-school regularly.

And while he was watching the bubonic plague sweeping up cities, he tried too, like the others, to tell the people about a God who would not be displeased if they killed the rats and stopped the plague.

But he could not convince anybody, or at best a few here and there.

The next thing that was known about General Booth-Tucker's work in India was, that he had (still with his Bible, of course, and with his kind look) slipped away and established in the south of France a factory for the manufacture of gloves.

He then returned to his poor superstitious people in India who would not believe him, and told them that he knew and knew absolutely that they would not be punished for killing the rats, that the rats were not sacred, and that he could prove it.

He offered the people so much apiece for the skins of the rats.

The poorest and most desperate of the natives then began killing the rats secretly and bringing in the skins.

They waited for the wrath of Heaven to fall upon them. Nothing happened, then they told others. The others are telling everybody.

General Booth-Tucker's factory to-day in the south of France is very busy making money for the Salvation Army, turning out Christian gloves for the West and turning out Christians or the beginnings of Christians for the East, and the ancient, obstinate theological idea of the holiness of the rats which the Hindoos have had is being ceaselessly, happily, and stupendously, all day and all night, disproved.

Incidentally the little religious glove factory of General Booth-Tucker's in the south of France is giving India the first serious and fair chance it has ever had to stop being a pest house on the world, and to bring the bubonic plague with its threat at a planet to an end.

General Booth-Tucker's Bible was just like anybody else's Bible. But there must have been something about the way he read his Bible that made him think of things. And there must have been something about his kind look. He looked kindly at something in particular, and he was determined to make that something in particular do. He had the rats, and he had the gloves, and he had the Hindoo's—and he made them do, and before he knew it (I doubt if he knows it now) he became a saviour or inventor.

In the big, desolate, darkened heart of a nation he had wedged in a God.

* * * * *

I wonder if General Booth-Tucker—that is, the original, very small edition of General Booth-Tucker—had been in that memorable crowd, that memorable day in the Strand when nobody (with a report that was heard around the world) stole a penny—I wonder if General Booth-Tucker would have been A Very Good Little Boy.

One of the pennies might have been missing.

I have no prejudice against the Very Good Little Boy. It is not his goodness that is what is the matter with him. But I am very much afraid that if there were any way of getting all the facts, it would not be hard to prove categorically that what has been holding the world back the last twenty-five years in its religious ideals, its business ethics, its liberty, candour, its courage, and its skill in social engineering, is the Very Good Little Boy. He may be comparatively harmless at first and before his moustache is grown, but the moment he becomes a grown-up or the moment he sits on committees with his quiet, careful, snug, proper fear of experiment, of bold initiative, his disease of never running a risk, his moral anaemia, he blocks all progress in churches, in legislatures, in directors' meetings, in trades unions, in slums and May-fairs. One sees The Good Little Boys weighing down everything the moment they are grown up.

They have all been brought up each with his one faint, polite little hunger, his one ambition, his one pale downy desire in life, looking forward day by day, year by year, to the fine frenzy, to the fierce joy of Never Making a Mistake.

If I had been given the appointment and were about to set to work to-morrow morning to make a new world, I would begin by getting together all the people in this one that I knew, or had noticed anywhere, who seemed to have in them the spirit of experiment. Any boy or girl or man or woman that I had seen having the curiosity to try the different kinds and different sizes of right and wrong, or that I had seen boldly and faithfully experimenting with the beautiful and the ugly so that they really knew about them for themselves—would be let in. I would put these people for a time in a place by themselves where the people who want to keep them from trying or learning, could not get at them.

Then I would let them try.

I would put the humdrum people in another place by themselves and let them humdrum, the respectable people by themselves and let them respectabilize.

Then after my try-world had tried, and got well started and the people in it had finished off some things and knew what they wanted, I would allow the humdrums and the respectabilities to be let in—to do what they were told.

Doing what they are told is what they like. So they would be happy.

Of course doing what they are told is what is the matter with them. But what is the matter with them would be useful.

And everybody would be happy.

* * * * *

When the Titanic went down a little while ago and those few quiet men on deck began their duty in that soft, gracious moonlit night, of sorting out the people who should die from the people who should live—if one was a woman one could live. If one was a man one could die.

No one will quarrel with the division as the only possible or endurable one that could have been made.

But if God himself could have made the division or some super-man ship's officer who could have represented God, could have made it, it is not hard to believe that a less superficial, a more profound and human difference between people would have been used in sorting out the people who should live from the people who should die than a difference in organs of reproduction.

The women were saved first because the men were men and because it was the way the men felt. It expressed the men who were on the deck that night that the women should be saved first; it was the last chance they had to express themselves like men and they wanted to do it.

But if God himself could have made the division with the immediate and conclusive knowledge of who everybody was, of what they really were in their hearts, and of what they and their children and their children's children would do for the world if they lived no one would have quarrelled with God for making what would have seemed at the moment, no doubt, very unreasonable and ungallant and impossible-looking discriminations in sorting out the people who should live from the people who should die.

Possibly even Man (using the word with a capital), acting from the point of view of history and of the race and from the point of view of making a kind of world where Titanic disasters could not happen, would have chosen on the deck of the Titanic that night, very much the way God would.

From the point of view of Man there would have been no discrimination in favour of a woman because she was a woman.

The last cry of the last man that the still listening life-boats heard coming up out of the sea that night might have been the cry of the man who had invented a ship that could not sink.

There would not have been a woman in a life-boat or a woman sinking in the sea who would not have had this man saved before a woman.

If we could absolutely know all about the people, who are the people in this world that we should want to have saved first, that we would want to have taken to the life-boats and saved first at sea?

The women who are with child.

And the men who are about to have ideas.

And the men who man the boats for them, who in God's name and in the name of a world protect its women who are with child, and its men who are about to have ideas.

The world is different from the Titanic. We do not need to line up our immortal fellow human beings, sort them out in a minute on a world and say to them, "Go here and die!" "Go there and live!" We are able to spend on a world at least an average of thirty-five years apiece on all these immortal human beings we are with, in seeing what they are like, in guessing on what they are for and on their relative value, and in deciding where they belong and what a world can do with them.

We ought to do better in saving people on a world. We have more time to think.

What would we try to do if we took the time to think? Would there be any way of fixing upon an order for saving people on a world? What would be the most noble, the most universal, the most Godlike and democratic schedule for souls to be saved on—on a world?

I think the man that would save the most other people should be saved first. It would not be democratic to save an ordinary man, a man who could just save himself, just think for himself, when saving the man next to him instead would be saving a man who would save a thousand ordinary men, or men who have gifts for thinking only of themselves.

Of course one man who thinks merely of himself is as good as another man who thinks merely of himself, but from the point of view of a democracy every common man has an inalienable right—the right to have the man who saves common men saved first.

And the moment we get in this world, our first democracy, the moment the common man really believes in democracy, this aristocracy or people who save others (the common man himself will see to it) will be saved first.

He will make mistakes in applying the principle of democracy, that is in collecting his aristocracies, his strategic men, his linchpins of society, but he will believe in the principle all through. It will be not merely in his brain, but in his instincts, in his unconscious hero-worship, in his sinews and his bones, and it will stir in his blood, that some men should be saved before others.

But if the world is not a Titanic, and if we have on the average thirty-five years apiece to decide about men on a world and put them where they belong, it might not be amiss to try to unite for the time being on a few fundamental principles. What would seem to us to be a few fundamental principles for the act of world-assimilation, that vast, slow, unconscious crowd-process, that peristaltic action of society of gathering up and stowing away men—all these little numberless cells of humanity where they belong?

No one cell can have much to say about it. But we can watch.

And as we watch it seems to us that men may be said to be dividing themselves roughly and flowingly at all times into three great streams or classes.

They are either Inventors, or they are Artists, or they are Hewers.

Of course in classifying men it is necessary to bear in mind that their getting out of their classifications is what the classifications are for.

And it is also necessary to bear in mind that men can only be classified with regard to their emphasis and may belong in one class in regard to one thing and in another class with regard to another, but in any particular place, or at any particular time a man is doing a thing in this world, he is probably for the time being, while he is doing it, doing it as an Inventor (or genius), as an Artist (or organizer), or as a Hewer. Most men, it must be said, settle down in their classifications. They are very apt to decide for life whether they are Inventors or Artists or Hewers.

But as has been said before, being on a world and not on a Titanic, we have time to think.

On what principles could we make out a schedule or inventory of human nature, and decide on world-values in men?

When I was a boy I played in the hollow of a great butternut tree—the one my mother was married under. When I was in college I used to go back to it. I used to wonder a little that it was still there. When we had all grown up we all came back and got together under it one happy day and there it still stood, its great arms from out of the sky bent over lovers and over children on its little island, its wide river singing round it, still that glorious old hollow in it, full of dreams and childhood and mystery, and that old sudden sunshine in it through the knots like portholes ... then we stood there all of us together. And the mother watched her daughter married under it.

I can remember many days standing beneath it as a small boy (my small insides full of butternuts, a thousand more butternuts up on the tree), and I used to look up in its branches and wonder about it, wonder how it could keep on so with its butternuts and with its leaves, with its winters and with its summers, its cool shadows and sunshines, still being a butternut tree, with that huge hollow in it.

I have learned since that if a few ounces or whittlings of wood in a tree are chipped out in a ring around it under the bark, cords of wood in the limbs all up across the sky would die in a week—if one chips out those few little ounces of wood.

Cords of wood can be taken out of the inside of the tree and it will not mind.

It is that little half-inch rim of the tree where the juice runs up to the sun that makes the tree alive or dead.

The part that must be saved first and provided for first is that slippery little shiny streak under the bark.

One could dig out a huge brush-heap of roots and the tree would live. One could pick off millions of leaves, could cut cords of branches out of it, or one could make long hollows up to the sun, tubes to the sky out of trees, and they would live, if one still managed to save those little delicate pipe lines for Sap, running up and running down, day and night, night and day, between the light in heaven and the darkness in the ground.

Perhaps Men are valuable in proportion as it would be difficult to produce promptly other men to perform their functions, or to take their places.

If we cut away in society men of genius, leaves, and blossoms, in trees, men who reach down Heaven to us, they grow out again.

If we cut away in society great masses of roots, common men who hew out the earth in the ground and get earth ready to be heaved up to the sky—the roots grow out again.

But if we cut a little faint rim around it of artists, of inventive men-controllers, of the Sap-conductors, the men who make the Hewers run up to the sky and who make the geniuses come down to the ground, the men who run the tree together, who out of dark earth and bright sunshine build it softly—if we destroy these, this little rim of great men or men who save others, a totally new tree has to be begun.

It is the essence of a democracy to acknowledge that some men for the time being are more important in it than others, and that these men, whosoever they are, in whatever order of society they may be—poor, rich, famous, obscure—these men who think for others, who save others and invent others, who make it possible for others to invent themselves, these men shall be saved first.

* * * * *

One always thinks at first that one would like to make a diagram of human nature. It would be neat and convenient.

Then one discovers that no diagram one can make of human nature—unless one makes what might be called a kind of squirming diagram will really work.

Then one tries to imagine what a flowing diagram would be like.

Then it occurs to one, one has seen a flowing diagram.

A Tree is a flowing diagram.

So I am putting down on this page for what it may be worth, what I have called A Family Tree of Folks.

Read across:


Inventors Organizers Labourers

Imagination Applied Imagination Tool or Mechanism

Fecundity Control Activity

Seer Poet Actor

{ The Man who Sees the } The Man who Generalizes {General in the Particular} Action

The Deeper Permanent {The Immediate Significance} Hewing Significance { or Meaning }

Light Applied Light or Heat Applied Heat or Motion

Stevenson and Wall James J. Hill Railway Hands

Creating Creative Selecting Hewing

The Democrat {The Aristocrat or} The Crowd { Crowdman }

Gods Heroes Men

Centrifugal Power Equilibrium Centripetal Power

The Whirl-Out People The Centre People The Whirl-In People

Alexander Graham Bell Telephone-Vail Hands

Architect Contractor Carpenter

Genius Artist Workmen

Columbus Columbus Isabella and the sailors

The Prospector The Engineer }Scoopers, Grabbers }(in mind or body), }Hewers

David the poet David the king David the soldier

Shakespeare Shakespeare Shakespeare



The typical mighty man or man of valour in our modern life is the Organizer or Artist.

If a man has succeeded in being a great organizer, it is because he has succeeded in organizing himself.

A man who has organized himself is a man who has built a personality. The main fact about a man who has succeeded in being an organized man or personality is, that he has ordered himself around.

Naturally, when other people have to be ordered around, being full-head-on in the habit of ordering, even ordering himself, the hardest feat of all, he is the man who has to be picked out to order other people. As a rule the man who orders himself around successfully, who makes his whole nature or all parts of himself work together, does it because he takes pains to find out who he is and what he is like. If he orders other men successfully and makes them work together it is because he knows what they are like.

A man knows what other people are like and bow they feel by having times of being a little like them and by being a big, latent all-possible, all-round kind of man.

Leadership follows.

Modern business consists in getting Inventors' minds and Hewers' minds to work together. The ruler of modern business is the man who by experience or imagination is half an Inventor himself, and half a Hewer himself. He knows how inventing feels and how hewing feels.

He has a southern exposure toward Hewers and makes Hewers feel identified with him. He has what might be called an eastern exposure toward men of genius, understands the inventive temperament, has the kind of personality that evokes inventiveness in others.

Incidentally he has what might be called a northern exposure which keeps him scientific, cool, and close to the spirit of facts.

And there has to be something very like a western exposure in him too, a touch of the homely seer, a habit of having reflections and afterglows, a sense of principles, and of the philosophy of men and things.

If I were to try to sum up all these qualities in a man and call it by one name, I would call it Glorified-commonsense.

If I were asked to define Glorified-commonsense I would say it is a glory which works. It belongs to the man who has a vision or coinage for others because he sees them as they are, and sees how the glory buried in them (i.e., the inspiration or source of hard work in them) can be got out.

Everywhere that the Artist in business, or Organizer, with his Inventors on one side of him and his Hewers on the other, can be seen to-day competing with the man who has the mere millionaire or owning type of mind, he is crowding him from the market.

It is because he understands how Inventors and Hewers feel and what they think and when he turns on Inventors he makes them invent and when he turns on Hewers he makes them hew.

The Hewer often thinks because he is rich or because he owns a business, that he can take the place of the artist, but he can be seen every day in every business around us, being passed relentlessly out of power because he cannot make his Inventors invent and cannot make his Hewers hew as well as some other man. The moment his Inventors and Hewers think of him, hear about him, or have any dealing with him—with the mere millionaire, the mere owner kind of person, his Inventors invent as little as they can, and his Hewers hew as softly as they dare.

This is called the Modern Industrial Problem.

And no man but the artist, the man with the inventing and the hewing spirit both in him, who daily puts the inventing spirit and the hewing spirit together in himself, can get it together in others.

Only the man who has kept and saved both the inventing and hewing spirit in himself can save it in others—can be a saviour or artist.



I have been trying to say in this book that goodness in daily life, or in business, in common world-running or world housekeeping, is by an implacable crowd-process working slowly out of the hands of the wrong men into the hands of the right ones.

If this is not true, I am ready to declare myself as a last resort, in favour of a strike.

There is only one strike that would be practical.

I would declare for a strike of the saviours.

* * * * *

By a saviour I do not mean a man who stoops down to me and saves me. A saviour to me is a man who stands by and lets me save myself.

I am afraid we cannot expect much of men who can bear the idea of being saved by other people, or by saviours who have a stooping feeling.

I rejoice daily in the spirit of our modern laboring men, in that holy defiance in their eyes, in the way they will not say "please" to their employers and announce that they will save themselves.

The only saviour who can do things for labouring men is the saviour who proposes to do things with them, who stands by, who helps to keep oppressors and stooping saviours off—who sees that they have a fair chance and room to save themselves.

I define a true saviour as a man who is trying to save himself.

It was because Christ, Savonarola, and John Bunyan were all trying to save themselves that it ever so much as occurred to them to save worlds. Saving a world was the only way to do it.

The Cross was Christ's final stand for his own companionableness, his stand for being like other people, for having other people to share his life with, his faith in others and his joy in the world.

The world was saved incidentally when Christ died on the Cross. He wanted to live more abundantly—and he had to have certain sorts of people to live more abundantly with. He did not want to live unless he could live more abundantly.

We live in a world in which inventors want to die if they cannot invent and in which Hewers want to die if they cannot hew.

I am not proud. I am willing to be saved. Any saviour may save me if he wants to, if his saving me is a part of his saving himself.

If the inventor saves me and saves us all because he wants to be in a world where an inventor can invent, wants some one to invent to; if the artist saves me because it is part of his worship of God to have me saved and wants to use me every day to rejoice about the world with—if the Hewer comes over and hews out a place in the world for me because he wants to hew, I am willing.

All that I demand is, that if a man take the liberty of being a saviour to me that he refrain from stooping, that he come up to me and save me like a man, that he stand before me and tell me that here is something that we, he and I, shoulder to shoulder, can do, something that neither of us could do alone. Then he will fall to with me and I will fall to with him, and we will do it.

This is what I mean by a saviour.



A factory in —— some ten years ago employed one hundred men. Three of these men were in the office and ninety-seven were hands in the works. To-day this same factory which is doing a very much larger business is still employing one hundred men, but thirty of the men are employed in the office and seventy in the works.

Ten years, ago to put it in other words, the factory provided places for one artist or manager and two inventors and places for ninety-seven Hewers.

To-day the factory has made room for thirty inventors, one manager and twenty-nine men who spend their entire time in thinking of things that will help the Hewers hew.

It has seventy Hewers who are helping the Inventors invent by hewing three times as hard and three times as skilfully or three times as much as without the Inventors to help them, they had dreamed they could hew before.

The Artist or Organizer who made this change in the factory found that among the ninety-seven Hewers that were employed a number of Hewers were hewing very poorly, because though hewing was the best they could do, they could not even hew. He found certain others who were hewing poorly because they were not Hewers, but Inventors. These he set to work—some of them inventing in the office.

On closer examination the two Inventors in the office were found to be not Inventors at all. One of them was a fine Hewer who liked to hew and who hated inventing and the other was merely a rich Hewer who was an owner in the business who saw suddenly that he would have to stop inventing and stop very soon if he wanted the business to make any more money.

There are four things that the Artist has to do with a factory like this before he can make it efficient.

Each of these things is an art. One art is the art of compelling the mere owner, the man with the merely hewing mind, to confine himself to the one thing he knows how to do, namely to shovelling, to shovelling his money in when and where he was told it was needed, and to shovelling his money out when it has been made for him.

The art of compelling a mere owner to know his place, of keeping him shovelling money in and shovelling money out silently and modestly, consists as a rule in having the Artist or Organizer tell him that unless the business is placed completely in his hands he will not undertake to run it.

This is the first art. The second art consists in having an understanding with the inventors that they will invent ways of helping the Hewers hew.

The third art consists in having an understanding with the Hewers that they will accept the help of the Inventors and hew with it. The fourth art is the art of representing the consumer with the Hewer and with the Inventor and with the Owner and seeing that he shares in the benefits of all economies and improvements.

These are all human arts and turn on the power in a man of being a true artist, of being a man-inventor, a man-developer and a man-mixer, daily taking part of himself and using these parts in putting other men together.

These organizers or artists, being the men who see how—are the men who are not afraid.



If all the unbrained money in the world to-day and the men that go with it could be isolated, could be taken by men of imagination and put in a few ships and sent off to an island in the sea—if New York and London and all the other important places could be left in the hands of the men who have imagination, poor and rich, they would soon have the world in shape to make the men with merely owning minds, the mere owners off on their island, beg to come back to it, to be allowed to have a share in it on any terms.

In order to be fair, of course, their island would have to be a furnished island—mines, woods, and everything they could want. It would become a kind of brute wilderness or desert in twenty-five years. We could, now and then, some of us, take happy little trips, go out and look them over on their little furnished island. It would do us good to watch them—these men with merely owning or holding-on minds, really noticing at last how unimportant they are.

But it is not necessary to resort to a furnished island as a device, as a mirror for making mere millionaires see themselves.

This is a thing that could be done for millionaires now, most of them, here just where they are.

All that is necessary is to have the brains of the world so organized that the millionaires who expect merely because they are millionaires to be run after by brains, cannot get any brains to run after them.

I am in favour of organizing the brains of the world into a trades union.

One of the next things that is going to happen is that the managing and creating minds of the world to-day are going to organize, are going to see suddenly their real power and use it. The brains are about to have, as labour and capital already have, a class consciousness.

I would not claim that there is going to be an international strike of the brains of the world, but it will not be long before the managing class as a class will be organized so that they can strike if they want to.

The Artists or Organizers and Managers of business will not need probably, in order to accomplish their purpose, to strike against the uncreative millionaires. They will make a stand (which the best of them have already made now) for the balance of power in any business that they furnish their brains to. The brains that create the profits for the owners and that create the labour for the labourers, will make terms for their brains and will withhold their brains if necessary to this end. But it is far more likely that they will accomplish their purpose sooner by using their brains for the millionaires and for the labourers—by cooeperating with the millionaires and labourers than they will by striking against them or keeping their brains back.

They are in a position to make the millionaires see how little money they can make without them even in a few days. They will let them try. A very little trying will prove it.

Where hand labour would have to strike for weeks and months to prove its value, brain labour would have to strike hours and days.

This is what is going to be done in modern business in one business at a time, the brains insisting in each firm upon full control.

Then, of course, the firms that have the brains in most full control will drive the firms in which brains are in less control out of competition.

Then brains will spread from one business to another. The Managers, Artists, and Organizers of the world will have formed at last a Brain Syndicate, and they will put themselves in a position to determine in their own interests and in the interests of society at large the terms on which all men—all men who have no brains to put with their money—shall be allowed to have the use of theirs. They will monopolize the brain supply of the world.

Then they will act. Under our present regime money hires men; under the regime of the Brain Syndicate men will hire money. Money—i.e., saved up or canned labour, is going to be hired by Managers, Organizers, and Engineers with as much discrimination and with as deep a study of its efficiency, as new labour is hired. The millionaires are going to be seen standing with their money bags and their little hats in their hands like office boys asking for positions for their money before the doors of the really serious and important men, the men who toil out the ideas and the ways and the means of carrying out ideas—the men who do the real work of the world, who see things that they want and see how to get them—the men of imagination, the inventors of ideas, organizers of facts, generals and engineers in human nature.

It is these men who are going to allow people who merely have thoughtless labour and people who merely have thoughtless money to be let in with them. The world's quarrel with the rich man is not his being a rich man, but his being rich without brains, and its quarrel with the poor labourer is not his being a poor labourer, but his being a poor labourer without brains. The only way that either of these men can have a chance to be of any value is in letting themselves be used by the man who will supply them with what they lack. They will try to get this man to see if he cannot think of some way of getting some good out of them for themselves, and for others.

We have a Frederick Taylor for furnishing brains to labour.

We are going to have a Frederick Taylor to attend to the brain-supply of millionaires, to idea-outfits for directors.

Every big firm is going to have a large group of specialists working on the problem of how to make millionaires—its own particular millionaires think, devising ways of keeping idle and thoughtless capitalists out of the way. If the experts fail in making millionaires think, they may be succeeded by experts in getting rid of them and in finding thoughtful money, possibly made up of many small sums, to take their place.

The real question the Artist or Organizer is going to ask about any man with capital will be, "Is it the man who is making the money valuable and important or is it the money that is making this man important for the time being and a little noticeable or important-looking?"

The only really serious question we have to face about money to-day is the unimportance of the men who have it. The Hewers or Scoopers, or Grabbers, who have assumed the places of the Artist and the Inventor because they have the money, are about to be crowded over to the silent, modest back seats in directors' meetings. If they want their profits, they must give up their votes. They are going to be snubbed. They are going to beg to be noticed. The preferred stock or voting stock will be kept entirely in the hands of the men of working imagination, of clear-headedness about things that are not quite seen, the things that constitute the true values in any business situation, the men who have the sense of the way things work and of the way they will have to go.

Mere millionaires who do not know their place in a great business will be crowded into small ones. They will be confronted by the organized refusal of men with brains to work for their inferiors, to be under control of men of second-rate order. Men with mere owning and grabbing minds will only be able to find men as stupid as they are to invest and manage their money for them. In a really big creative business their only chance will be cash and silence. They will be very glad at last to get in on any terms, if the men of brains will let their money edge into their business without votes and be carried along with it as a favour.

It is because things are not like this now, that we have an industrial problem.

Managers who have already hired labour as a matter of course are going to hire the kind of capital they like, the kind of capital that thinks and that can work with thinking men.

There will gradually evolve a general recognition in business on the part of men who run it and on the part of managers, of the moral or human value of money. The successful manager is no longer going to grab thoughtlessly at any old, idle, foolish pot of money that may be offered to him. He is going to study the man who goes with it, see how he will vote and see whether he knows his place, whether he is a Hewer, for instance, who thinks he is an Inventor. Does he or does he not know which he is, an Inventor, an Artist, or a Hewer?

Capitalists will expect as a matter of course to be looked over and to be hired in a great business enterprise as carefully as labourers are being hired now.

The moment it is generally realized that the managers of every big modern business have become as particular about letting in the right kind of directors as they have been before about letting in the right kind of labour, we will stop having an upside-down business world.

An upside-down business world is one in which any man who has money thinks he can be a director almost anywhere, a world in which on every hand we find managers who are not touching the imagination of the public and getting it to buy, and not touching the imagination of labour and getting it to work, because they are not free to carry out their ideas without submitting them to incompetent and scared owners.

The incompetent and scared owners—the men who cannot think—are about to be shut out. Then they will be compelled to hire incompetent and scared managers. Then they will lose their money. Then the world will slip out of their hands.

The problem of modern industry is to be not the distribution of the money supply, but the distribution of the man-supply.

Money follows men.

Free men. Free money.




"I know that all men ever born are also my brothers.... Limitless leaves too, stiff or drooping in the fields, And brown ants in the little wells beneath them And mossy scabs of the worm fence, heaped stones, elders, mulleins and poke weed."

_A Child said, "What is grass?" fetching it to me with full hands.

How could I answer the Child?_

* * * * *

"I want to trust the sky and the grass! I want to believe the songs I hear from the fenceposts! Why should a maple-bud mislead me?"



A big New England factory, not long ago, wanted to get nearer its raw material and moved to Georgia.

All the machine considerations, better water-power, cheaper labour, smaller freight bills, and new markets had argued for moving to Georgia.

Long rows of new mills were built and thousands of negroes were moved in and thousands of shanties were put up, and the men and the women stood between the wheels. And the wheels turned.

There was not a thing that had not been thought of except the men and women that stood between the wheels.

The men and women that stood between the wheels were, for the most part, strong and hearty persons and they never looked anxious or abused and did as they were told.

And when Saturday night came, crowds of them with their black faces, of the men and of the women, of the boys and girls, might have been seen filing out of the works with their week's wages.

Monday morning a few of them dribbled back. There were enough who would come to run three mills. All the others in the long row of mills were silent. Tuesday morning, Number Four started up, Wednesday, Number Five. By Thursday noon they were all going.

The same thing happened the week after, and the week after, and the week after that.

The management tried everything they could think of with their people, scolding, discharging, making their work harder, making their work easier, paying them less, paying them more, two Baptist ministers and even a little Roman Catholic Church.

As long as the negroes saw enough to eat for three days, they would not work.

It began to look as if the mills would have to move back to Massachusetts, where people looked anxious and where people felt poor, got up at 5 A.M. Mondays and worked.

Suddenly one day, the son of one of the owners, a very new-looking young man who had never seen a business college, and who had run through Harvard almost without looking at a book, and who really did not seem to know or to care anything about anything—except folks—appeared on the scene with orders from his father that he be set to work.

The manager could not imagine what to do with him at first, but finally, being a boy who made people like him more than they ought to, he found himself placed in charge of the Company Store. The company owned the village, and the Company Store, which had been treated as a mere necessity in the lonely village, had been located, or rather dumped, at the time, into a building with rows of little house-windows in it, a kind of extra storehouse on the premises.

The first thing the young man did was to stove four holes in the building, all along the front and around the corners on the two sides, and put in four big plate-glass windows. The store was mysteriously closed up in front for a few days to do this, and no one could see what was happening, and the negroes slunk around into a back room to buy their meal and molasses. And finally one morning, one Sunday morning, the store opened up bravely and flew open in front.

The windows on the right contained three big purple hats with blue feathers, and some pink parasols.

The windows on the left were full of white waistcoats, silver-headed canes, patent-leather shoes and other things to live up to.

Monday morning more of the mills were running than usual.

Later in the week there appeared in the windows melodions, phonographs, big gilt family Bibles, bread machines, sewing machines, and Morris chairs. Only a few hands took their Mondays off after this.

All the mills began running all the week.

* * * * *

Of course there are better things to live for than purple hats and blue feathers, and silver-headed canes, and patent leather shoes. But if people can be got to live six days ahead, or thirty days, or sixty days ahead, instead of three days ahead, by purple hats and blue feathers and white waistcoats, and if it is necessary to use purple hats and blue feathers to start people thinking in months instead of minutes, or to budge them over to where they can have a touch of idealism or of religion or of living beyond the moment, I say for one, with all my heart, "God bless purple hats and blue feathers!"

* * * * *

The great problem of modern charity, the one society is largely occupied with to-day, is: "What is there that we can possibly do for our millionaires?"

The next thing Society is going to do, perhaps, is to design and set up purple hats with blue feathers for millionaires.

The moment our millionaires have placed before them something to live for, a few real, live, satisfying ideals, or splendid lasting things they can do, things that everybody else would want to do, and that everybody else would envy them for doing, it will bore them to run a great business merely to make money. They will find it more interesting, harder, and calling for greater genius, to be great and capable employers. When our millionaires once begin to enter into competition with one another in being the greatest and most successful employers of labour on earth, our industrial wars will cease.

Millionaires who get as much work out of their employees as they dare, and pay them as little as they can, and who give the public as small values as they dare, and take as much money as they can, only do such stupid, humdrum, conventional things because they are bored, because they cannot really think of anything to live for.

Labourers whose daily, hourly occupation consists in seeing how much less work a day than they ought to do, they can do, and how much more money they can get out of their employers than they earn, only do such things because they are tired or bored and discouraged, and because they cannot think of anything that is truly big and fine and worth working for.

The industrial question is not an economic question. It is a question of supplying a nation with ideals. It is a problem which only an American National Ideal Supply Company could hope to handle. The very first moment three or four purple hats with blue feathers for millionaires and for labourers have been found and set up in the great show window of the world, the industrial unrest of this century begins to end.

* * * * *

As I went by, one day not long ago, I saw two small boys playing house—marking off rooms—sitting-rooms and bedrooms, with rows of stones on the ground. When I came up they had just taken hold of a big stone they wanted to lift over into line a little. They were tugging on it hopefully and with very red faces, and it did not budge. I picked up a small beam about five feet long on my side of the road, that I thought would do for a crowbar, stepped over to the boys, fixed a fulcrum for them, and went on with my walk. When I came back after my walk that night to the place where the boys had been playing, I found the boys had given up working on their house. And as I looked about, every big stone for yards around—every one that was the right size—seemed subtly out of place. The top of the stone wall, too, was very crooked.

They had given up playing house and had played crowbar all day instead.

I should think it would have been a rather wonderful day, those boys' first day, seven or eight hours of it spent, with just a little time off for luncheon, in seeing how a crowbar worked!

I have forgotten just how much larger part of a ton one inch more on a crowbar lifts. I never know figures very well. But I know people and I know that a man with only three day's worth of things ahead to live for does not get one hundredth part of the purchase power on what he is doing that the man gets who works with thirty days ahead of things to live for, all of them nerving him up, keeping him in training, and inspiring him. And I know that the man who does his work with a longer lever still, with thirty or forty years worth' of things he wants, all crowding in upon him and backing him up, can lift things so easily, so even jauntily, sometimes, that he seems to many of us sometimes to be a new size and a new kind of man.

* * * * *

The general conventional idea of business is, that if you give a man more wages to work for, he will work more, but of course if a business man has the brains, knows how to fire up an employee, knows how to give him something or suggest something in his life that will make him want to live twenty times as much, it would not only be cheaper, but it would work better than paying him twice as much wages.

Efficiency is based on news. Put before a man's life twenty times as much to live for and to work for, and he will do at least, well—twice as much work.

If a man has a big man's thing or object in view, he can do three times as much work. If the little thing he has to do, and keep doing, is seen daily by him as a part of a big thing, the power and drive of the big thing is in it, the little thing becomes the big thing, seems big while he is doing it every minute. It makes it easier to do it because it seems big.

The little man becomes a big man.

From the plain, practical point of view, it is the idealist in business, the shrewd, accurate, patient idealist in modern business who is the man of economic sense. The employer who can put out ideals in front of his people, who can make his people efficient with the least expense, is the employer who has the most economic sense.

The employer who is a master at supplying motives to people, who manages to cut down through to the quick in his employees, to the daily motives, to the hourly ideals, the hourly expectations with which they work, is the employer who already takes the lead, who is already setting the pace in the twentieth-century business world.

Possibly you have noticed this trait in the great employers or, at least, in the great managers of employers?

You are going, for instance, through a confectionery shop. As you move down the long aisles of candy machines you hear the clock strike eleven. Suddenly music starts up all around you and before your eyes four hundred girls swing off into each other's arms. They dance between their machines five minutes, and then, demurely, they drop back to their work. You see them sitting quietly in long white rows, folding up sweet-meats with flushed and glowing cheeks.

Is this sentiment or is it cold businesslike efficiency?

The more sentiment there is in it, I think, the more efficient it is and the better it works.

"Business is not business."

One need not quarrel about words, but certainly, whatever else business is, it is not business. It would be closer to the facts to call business an art or a religion, a kind of homely, inspired, applied piety, based upon gifts in men which are essentially religious gifts; the power of communion in the human heart, the genius for cultivating companionship, of getting people to understand you and understand one another and do team work. The bed-rock, the hard pan of business success lies in the fundamental, daily conviction—the personal habit in a man of looking upon business as a hard, accurate, closely studied, shrewd human art, a science of mutual expectation.

I am not saying that I would favour all employers of young women having them, to-morrow morning at eleven o'clock, swing off into each other's arms and dance for five minutes. The value of the dance in this particular case was that the Firm thought of the dancing itself and was always doing things like it, that everybody knew that the Firm, up in its glass office, felt glad, joined in the dance in spirit, enjoyed seeing the girls caught up for five minutes in the joy and swing of a big happy world full of sunshine and music outside, full of buoyant and gentle things, of ideals around them which belonged to them and of which they and their lives were a part.

When we admit that business success to-day turns or is beginning to turn on a man's power of getting work out of people, we admit that a man's power of getting work out of people, his business efficiency, turns on his power of supplying his people with ideals.

Ideals are news.

You come on a man who thinks he is out of breath and that he cannot possibly run. You happen to be able to tell him that some dynamite in the quarry across the road is going to blow the side of the hill out in forty-five seconds and he will run like a gazelle.

You tell a man the news, the true news that his employees are literally and honestly finding increased pay or promotion, either in their own establishment or elsewhere for every man they employ, as fast as he makes himself fit, and you have created a man three times his own size before your own eyes, all in a minute. And he begins working for you like a man three times his own size, and not because he is getting more for it, but because he suddenly believes in you, suddenly believes in the world and in the human race he belongs to.

To make a man work, say something to him or do something to him which will make him swing his hat for humanity, and give three cheers (like a meeting of workmen the other day): "Three cheers for God!"

There is a well-known firm in England which has the best labour of its kind in the world, because the moment the Firm finds that a man's skill has reached the uttermost point in his work, where it would be to the Firm's immediate interests to keep him and where the Firm could keep on making money out of him and where the man could not keep on growing, they have a way of stepping up to such a man (and such things happen every few days), and telling him that he ought to go elsewhere, finding him a better place and sending him to it. This is a regular system and highly organized. The factory is known or looked upon as a big family or school. There are hundreds of young men and young women who, in order to get in and get started, and merely be on the premises of such a factory, would offer to work for the firm for nothing. The Factory, to them, is like a great Gate on the World.

It is its ideals that have made the factory a great gate on the World.

And ideals are news. Ideals are news to a man about himself. News to a man about himself and about what he can be, is gospel.

And a factory with men at the top who have the brains about human nature to do things like this, men who can tell people news about themselves, all day, every day, all the week, like a church—let such a factory, I say, for one, have a steeple with chimes in it, if it wants to, and be counted with the other churches!

People have a fashion of speaking of a man's ideals in a kind of weak, pale way, as if ideals were clouds, done in water-colour by schoolgirls, as if they were pretty, innocent things, instead of being fierce, splendid, terrific energies, victorious, irrevocable in human history, trampling the earth like unicorns, breathing wonder, deaths, births upon the world, carrying everything before them, everywhere they go. These are ideals! This may not be the way ideals work in a moment or in a year, but it is the way they work in history, and it is the way they make a man feel when he is working on them. It is what they are for, to make him feel like this, when he is working on them. With the men who are most alive and who live the longest, the men who live farther ahead and think in longer periods of time, the energies in ideals function as an everyday matter of course.

I wish people would speak oftener of a man's motives, what he lives for, as his motive powers. They generally speak of motives in a man as if they were a mere kind of dead chart or spiritual geography in him, or clock-hand on him or map of his soul. The motives and desires in a man are the motors or engines in him, the central power house in a man, the thing in him that makes him go.

All a man has to do to live suddenly and unexpectedly a big life is to have suddenly a big motive.

Anybody who has ever tried, for five minutes, a big motive, ever tried working a little happiness for other people into what he is doing for himself, for instance, if he stopped to think about it and how it worked and how happy it made him himself, would never do anything in any other way all his life. It is the big motives that are efficient.



I think it was Sir William Lever who remarked (but I have heard in the last two years so many pearls dropped from the lips of millionaires that I am not quite sure) that the way to tell a millionaire, when one saw one, was by his lack of ready money. He added that perhaps a surer way of knowing a millionaire, when one saw one, was by his lack of ideas.

My own experience is that neither of these ways works as well as it used to. I very often meet a man now—a real live millionaire, no one would think it of.

One of them—one of the last ones—telegraphed me from down in the country one morning, swung up to London on a quick train, cooped me up with him at a little corner table in his hotel, and gave me more ideas in two hours than I had had in a week.

I came away very curious about him—whoever he was.

Not many days afterward I found myself motoring up a long, slow hill, full of wind and heather, and there in a stately park with all his treetops around him, and his own blue sky, in a big, beautiful, serene room, I saw him again.

He began at once, "Do you think Christ would have approved of my house?"

His five grown sons were sitting around him but he spoke vividly and directly and like a child, and as if he had just brushed sixty years away, and could, any time.

I said I did not think it fair to Christ, two thousand years off, to ask what he would have thought of a house like his, now. The only fair thing to do would be to ask what Christ would think if He were living here to-day.

"Well, suppose He had motored over here with you this afternoon from —— Manor, and spent last night with you there, and talked with you and with —— and had seen the pictures, and the great music room and wandered through the gardens, and suppose that then He had come through on his way up, all those two miles of slums down in —— seen all those poor, driven, crowded people, and had finally come up here with you to this big, still, restful place two thousand people could live in, and which I keep all to myself. You don't really mean to say, do you, that He would approve of my living in a house like this?"

I said that I did not think that Christ would be tipped over by a house or lose his bearings with a human soul because he lived in a park. I thought He would look him straight in the eyes.

"But Christ said, 'He that loseth his life shall save it!'"

"Yes, but He did not intend it as a mere remark about people's houses."

It did not seem to me that Christ meant simply giving up to other people easy and ordinary things like houses or like money, but that He meant giving up to others our motives, giving up the deepest, hardest things in us, our very selves to other people.

"And so you really think that if Christ came and looked at this house and looked at me in it, He would not mind?"

"I do not know. I think that after He had looked at your house He would go down and look at your factory, possibly. How many men do you employ?"

"Sixteen hundred."

"I think He would look at them, the sixteen hundred men, and then He would move about a little. Very likely He would look at their wives and the little children."

He thought a moment. I could see that he was not as afraid of having Christ see the factory as he was of having Him see the house.

I was not quite sure but I thought there was a little faint gleam in his eye when I mentioned the factory.

"What do you make?" I asked.

He named something that everybody knows.

Then I remembered suddenly who he was. He was one of the men I had first been told about in England, and the name had slipped from me. He had managed to do and do together the three things one goes about looking for everywhere in business—what might be called the Three R's of great business (though not necessarily R's). (1) He had raised the wages of his employees. (2) He had reduced prices to consumers. (3) He had reduced his proportion of profit and raised the income of the works, by inventing new classes of customers, and increasing the volume of the business.

He had found himself, one day, as most men do, sooner or later, with a demand for wages that he could not pay.

At first he told the men he could not pay them more, said that he would have to close the works if he did.

He was a very busy man to be confronted with a crisis like this. The market was trouble enough.

One morning, when he was up early, and the house was all still and he was sitting alone with himself, the thought slipped into his mind that there had been several times before in his life when he had sat thinking about certain things that could not be done. And then he had got up from thinking they could not be done and gone out and done them.

He wondered if he could not get up and go out and do this one.

As he sat in the stillness with a clear road before his mind and not a soul in the world up, the thought occurred to him, with not a thing in sight to stop it, that he had not really trained himself to be quite such an expert in raising wages as he had in some other things.

Perhaps he did not know about raising wages.

Perhaps if he concentrated his imagination as much on getting higher wages for his workmen as he had in those early days years before on making over all his obstinate raw material into the best cases of —— on earth, he might find it possible to get more wages for his men by persuading them to earn more and by getting their cooeperation in finding ways to earn more.

As he sat in the stillness, gradually (perhaps it was the stillness that did it) the idea grew on him.

He made up his mind to see what would happen if he worked as hard at paying higher wages for three months as he had for three years at making raw material into cases of the best——on earth.

Then things began happening every day. One of the most important happened to him.

He found that higher wages were as interesting a thing to work on as any other raw material had ever been.

He found that a cheap workman as raw material to make a high-priced workman out of was as interesting as a case of——.

A year or so after this, there was a strike (in his particular industry) of all the workmen in England. They struck to be paid the wages his men were paid.

He had been able to do three things he thought he thought he could not do. He had succeeded in doing the first, in raising the wages of his employees, by thinking up original ways of expressing himself to them, and of getting them to believe in him and of making them want to work a third harder. At the same time he succeeded in doing the second, in reducing the prices to consumers, by inventing new by-products out of waste.

He had succeeded in doing the third, in reducing his per cent. of profits and increasing his income from the works at the same time, by thinking up ways of creating new habits and new needs in his customers.

He had fulfilled, as it seems, the three requisites of a great business career. He had created new workmen, invented new things for men and women to want, and had then created some new men and women who could want them.

Incidentally all the while, day by day, while he was doing these things, he had distributed a large and more or less unexpected sum of money among all these three classes of people.

Some of this extra money went to his workmen, and some to himself, and some to his customers, but it was largely spent, of course, in getting business for other manufacturers and in getting people to buy all over England, from other manufacturers, things that such people as they had never been able before to afford to buy.

* * * * *

All these things that I have been saying and which I have duly confided to the reader flashed through my mind as I stood with my back to the fire, realizing suddenly that the man who had done them was the man with whom I was talking.

Possibly some little thing was said. I do not remember what. The next thing I knew was that, with his five grown sons around him, he returned to his attack on his house.

He said some days he was glad it was so far away. He did not want his workmen to see it. He did not go to the mill often in his motor-car, not when he could help it.

I said that I thought that a man who was doing extraordinary things for other people, things that other men could not get time or strength or freedom or boldness of mind or initiative to do, that any particular thing he could have that gave him any advantage or immunity for doing the extraordinary things better, that would give him more of a chance to give other people a chance, that the other people, if they were in their senses, would insist upon his having these things.

"I think there are hundreds of men in my mill who think that they ought to have my motor-car and three or four rooms in this house."

"Are they the most efficient ones?"


If a man gives over to other people his deepest motives, and if he really identifies himself—the very inside of himself with them and treats their interests as his interests, the more money he has, the more people like it.

"Take me, for instance," I said.

"I have hoped every minute since I knew you, that you were a prosperous man. I saw the house and looked around in the park as I motored up with joy. And when I came to the big gate I wanted to give three cheers! I wish you had stock in the Meat Trust in America, that you could pierce your way like a microbe into the vitals, into the inside of the Meat Trust in my own country, make a stand in a Directors' Meeting for ninety million people over there, say your say for them, vote your stock for them, say how you want a Meat Trust you belong to, to behave, how you want it to be a big, serious, business institution and not a humdrum, mechanical-minded hold-up anybody could think of—in charge of a few uninteresting, inglorious men—men nobody really cares to know and that nobody wants to be like ... when I think of what a man like you with money can do ...!

"Am I not tired every day, are you not tired, yourself, of going about everywhere and seeing money in the hands of all these second-class, socially feeble-minded men, of seeing columns in the papers of what such men think, of having college presidents, great universities, domes, churches and thousands of steeples all deferring to them and bowing to them, and all the superior, live, interested people ringing their door bells for their money waiting outside on benches for what they think?"

I do not believe that Christ came into the world, two thousand years ago, to say that only the men who have minds of the second class, men who are not far-sighted enough in business to be decently unselfish in this world, should be allowed to have control of the money and of the peoples' means of living in it.

We are living in an age of big machines and big, inevitable aggregations, and to say in an age like this, and above all, to get it out of a Bible, or put it into a hymn book or make a religion of it, that all the first class minds of the world—the men who see far enough to be unselfish, should give over their money to second-class men, is the most monstrous, most unbelieving, unfaithful, unbiblical, irreligious thing a world can be guilty of. The one thing that is now the matter with money, is that the second-class people have most of it.

"What would happen if we applied asceticism or a tired, discouraged unbelief to having children that we do to having pounds and pence and dollars and cents? You would not stand for that would you?"

I looked at his five sons.

"Suppose all the good families of to-day were to take the ground that having children is a self-indulgence unworthy of good people; suppose the good people leave having children in this world almost entirely to bad ones?

"This is what has been happening to money.

"Unbelief in money is unbelief in the spirit. It is paying too much attention to wealth to say that one must or that one must not have it."

I cannot recall precisely what was said after this in that long evening talk of ours but what I tried to say perhaps might have been something like this:

The essence of the New Testament seems to be the emphasis of a man's spirit with or without money. Whether a man should be rich or get out of being rich and earn the right to be poor (which some very true and big men, artists and inventors in this world will always prefer) turns on a man's temperament. If a man has a money genius and can so handle money that he can make money, and if he can, at the same time, and all in one bargain, express his own spirit, if he can free the spirits of other men with money and express his religion in it, he should be ostracized by all thoughtful, Christian people, if in the desperate crisis of an age like this, he tries to get out of being rich.

The one thing a man can be said to be for in this world, is to express the goodness—the religion in him, in something, and if he is not the kind of man who can express his religion in money and in employing labour, then let him find something—say music or radium or painting in which he can. It is this bounding off in a world, this making a bare spot in life and saying "This is not God, this cannot be God!"—it is this alone that is sacriligious.

* * * * *

It may be that I am merely speaking for myself, but I did discover a man on Fleet Street the other day who quite agreed with me apparently, that if the thing a man has in him is religion he can put it up or express it in almost anything.

This man had tried to express his idea in a window.

He had done a Leonardo da Vinci's "Last Supper," in sugar—a kind of bas-relief in sugar.

I do not claim that this kind of foolish, helpless caricature of a great spiritual truth filled me with a great reverence or that it does now.

But it did make me think how things were.

If sugar with this man, like money with a banker, was the one logical thing the man had to express his religion in, or if what he had had to express had been really true and fine, or if there had been a true or fine or great man to express, I do not doubt sugar could have been made to do it.

One single man with enough money and enough religions skill in human nature, who would get into the Sugar Trust with some good, fighting, voting stock, who could make the Sugar Trust do as it would be done by, would make over American industry in twenty years.

He would have thrown up as on a high mountain, before all American men, one great specimen, enviable business. He would have revealed as in a kind of deep, sober apocalypse, American business to itself. He would have revealed American business as a new national art form, as an expression of the practical religion, the genius for real things, that is our real modern temperament in America and the real modern temperament in all the nations.

Of course it may not need to be done precisely with the Sugar Trust.

The Meat Trust might do it first, or the Steel Trust.

But it will be done.

Then the Golden Rule, one great Golden Rule-machine having been installed in our trust that knew the most, and was most known, it could be installed in the others.

Religion can be expressed much better to-day in a stock-holder's meeting than it can in a prayer-meeting.

Charles Cabot, of Boston, walked in quietly to the Stock-holder's Meeting of the Steel Trust one day and with a little touch of money—$2,900 in one hand, and a copy of the American Magazine in the other, made (with $2,900) $1,468,000,000 do right.





Every now and then when I am in London (at the instigation of some business man who takes the time off to belong to it), I drop into a pleasant but other-worldly and absent-minded place called the House of Commons.

I sit in the windows in the smoking-room and watch the faces of the members all about me and watch the steamships, strangely, softly, suddenly—Shakespeare and Pepys, outside on the river, slip gravely by under glass.

Or I go in and sit down under the gallery, face to face with the Speaker, looking across those profiles of world-makers in their seats; and I watch and listen in the House itself. There is a kind of pleasant, convenient, appropriate hush upon the world there.


The decorous, orderly machinery of knowledge rolls over one—one listens to It, to the soft clatter of the endless belt of words.

Every now and then one sees a member in the middle of a speech, or possibly in the middle of a sentence, slip up quietly and take a look (under glass) at The People, or he uses a microscope, perhaps, or a reading glass on The People, Mr. Bonar Law's, Mr. Lloyd George's, Ramsay MacDonald's, Will Crook's, or somebody's. Then he comes back gravely as if he had got the people attended to now, and finishes what he was saying.

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