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but it is just as necessary that it should be exercised with wisdom and self-restraint. The first exercise of that power should be the securing of publicity among all great corporations doing an interstate business. The publicity, though non-inquisitorial, should be real and thorough as to all important facts with which the public has concern. Daylight is a powerful discourager of evil. Such publicity would by itself tend to cure the evils of which there is just complaint; it would show us if evils existed, and where the evils are imaginary, and it would show us what next ought to be done.
Above all, let us remember that our success in accomplishing anything depends very much upon our not trying to accomplish everything. Distrust whoever pretends to offer you a patent cure-all for every ill of the body politic, just as you would a man who offers a medicine which would cure every evil of your individual body. A medicine that is recommended to cure both asthma and a broken leg is not good for either. Mankind has moved slowly upward through the ages, sometimes a little faster, sometimes a little slower, but rarely, indeed, by leaps and bounds. At times a great crisis comes in which a great people, perchance led by a great man, can at white heat strike some mighty blow for the right-make a long stride in advance along the path of justice and of orderly liberty. But normally we must be content if each of us can do something--not all that we wish, but something-for the advancement of those principles of righteousness which underlie all real national greatness, all true civilization and freedom. I see no promise of any immediate and complete solution of all the problems we group together when we speak of the trust question. But we can make a beginning in solving these problems, and a good beginning, if only we approach the subject with a sufficiency of resolution, of honesty, and of that hard common-sense which is one of the most valuable, and not always one of the most common, assets in any nation's greatness. The existing laws will be fully enforced as they stand on the statute books without regard to persons, and I think good has already come from their enforcement. I think furthermore that additional legislation should be had and can be had, which will enable us to accomplish much more along the same lines. No man can promise a perfect solution, at least in the immediate future. But something has already been done, and much more can be done if our people temperately and determinedly will that it shall be done.
In conclusion let me add one word. While we are not to be excused if we fail to do whatever is possible through the agency of Government, we must keep ever in mind that no action of the Government, no action by combination among ourselves, can take the place of the individual qualities to which in the long run every man must owe the success he can make of life. There never has been devised, and there never will be devised, any law which will enable a man to succeed save by the exercise of those qualities which have always been the prerequisites of success—the qualities of hard work, of keen intelligence, of unflinching will. Such action can supplement those qualities, but it cannot take their place. No action by the State can do more than supplement the initiative of the individual; and ordinarily the action of the State can do no more than to secure to each individual the chance to show under as favorable conditions as possible the stuff that there is in him.
AT SYMPHONY HALL, BOSTON, AUGUST 25, 1902
Governor Crane, Mayor Collins, men and women of Boston :
I want to take up this evening the general question of our economic and social relations, with specific reference to that problem with which I think our people are now greatly concerning themselves—the problem of our complex social condition as intensified by the existence of the great corporations which we rather loosely designate as trusts. I have not come here to say that I have discovered a patent cure-all for any evils. ple's minds are greatly agitated on any subject, and especially when they feel deeply but rather vaguely that conditions are not right, it is far pleasanter in addressing them to be indifferent as to what you promise; but it is much less pleasant afterwards, when you come to try to carry out what has been promised. Of course the worth of a promise consists purely in the way in which the performance squares with it. That has two sides. In the first place, if a man is an honest man he will try just as hard to keep a promise made on the stump as one made off the stump. In the second place, if the people keep their heads they won't wish promises to be made which are impossible of performance. You see, one side of that question represents my duty, and the other side yours.
Mankind goes ahead but slowly, and it goes ahead mainly through each of us trying to do the best that is in
him and to do it in the sanest way. We have founded our republic upon the theory that the average man will, as a rule, do the right thing, that in the long run the majority will decide for what is sane and wholesome. If our fathers were mistaken in that theory, if ever the times become such-not occasionally but persistently--that the mass of the people do what is unwholesome, what is wrong, then the republic cannot stand, I care not how good its laws, I care not what marvellous mechanism its Constitution may embody. Back of the laws, back of the administration, back of the system of government lies the man, lies the average manhood of our people, and in the long run we are going to go up or go down accordingly as the average standard of our citizenship does or does not wax in growth and grace.
The first requisite of good citizenship is that the man shall do the homely, every-day, humdrum duties well. A man is not a good citizen, I do not care how lofty his thoughts are about citizenship in the abstract, if in the concrete his actions do not bear them out; and it does not make much difference how high his aspirations for mankind at large may be, if he does not behave well in his own family those aspirations do not bear visible fruit. He must be a good breadwinner, he must take care of his wife and his children, he must be a neighbor whom his neighbors can trust, he must act squarely in his business relations,-he must do all these every day, ordinary duties first, or he is not a good citizen. But he must do
In this country of ours the average citizen must devote a good deal of thought and time to the affairs of the State as a whole or those affairs will go backward; and he must devote that thought and that time steadily and intelligently. If there is any one quality that is not admirable, whether in a nation or in an individual, it is hysterics, either in religion or in anything else. The man or woman who makes up for ten days' indifference to duty by an eleventh-day morbid repentance about that duty is of scant use in the world. Now in the same way it is of no possible use to decline to go through all the ordinary duties of citizenship for a long space of time and then suddenly to get up and feel very angry about something or somebody, not clearly defined, and demand reform, as if it was a concrete substance to be handed out forthwith.
This is preliminary to what I want to say to you about the whole question of great corporations as affecting the public. There are very many and very difficult problems with which we are faced as the results of the forces which have been in play for more than the lifetime of a generation. It is worse than useless for any of us to rail at or regret the great growth of our industrial civilization during the last half century. Speaking academically, we can, according to our several temperaments, regret that the old days with the old life have vanished, or not, just as we choose; but we are here to-night only because of the play of those great forces. There is but little use in regretting that things have been shaping themselves differently from what we might have preferred. The practical thing to do is to face the conditions as they are and see if we cannot get the best there is in them out of them. Now we shall not get a complete or perfect solution for all of the evils attendant upon the development of the trusts by any single action on our part. A good many actions in a good many different ways will be required before we get many of those evils even partially remedied. We must first of all think clearly; we must probably experiment somewhat; we must above all show by our actions that our interest is permanent and not spasmodic; and we must see that all proper steps are taken toward the solution. Now of course all this is perfectly trite. Every one who thinks knows that the only way in which any problem of great importance was ever successfully