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in the Spanish West Indies, and if he has not yet disappeared from the Philippines it may at least be said that American law and order has been extended further than ever did that of Spain.
The United States has gained in exports to these islands, it is true, but they have gained also in exports to the United States. Their sales to us to-day annually out-value our sales to them, and by millions of dollars. The islands have commercially infinitely more to gain from us than we have to gain from them by a union of our interests.
In all these islands peculation has been followed by punishment, education has gone to the ignorant, hospitals have risen for the diseased, sanitation has cleansed the pestilence, honesty has put to flight corruption, and justice has supplanted bribery.
The population of the world is increasing, and it is as absurd to contend that great fertile sections of the habitable globe should remain savage or revert to savagery as it is to bewail the fact that in another century the lion and the giraffe will be extinct. The history of our dealings with the Indians is not altogether a pleasant history, but who will claim that the world as a whole would be better off to-day if the white man had been permanently excluded from the great food raising districts which the Indian wrested from Skraeling or Mound Builder ?
It is unquestionably better for the world that the French flag flies in Algiers. The Dutch have been brilliantly successful in handling tropical colonies with a population seven times that of the mother country. The thriving colonies of England girdle the earth and, with few exceptions, for the benefit of the world as well as of England.
Is it manly for a nation that boasts its dominance over
Europe to shrink from the task of Europeans? If Japan can succeed in Formosa, shall the United States fail in Luzon?
Whether it please us or not the task is ours. Whether it please us or not the peace of the world is partly in our keeping.
The leadership of the United States may well lift up the heart, its awful responsibility may well bend the knee.
Not Tagalogs in arms, not the navies of Europe, but the recklessness, the greed, the treachery of her own sons may yet send this great nation staggering to its ruin.
The conquest to which we have to set our faces is the conquest not of weaker races but the conquest of ourselves. It needs no Cassandra to prophesy a downfall as swift as our upbuilding if the idols of hypocrisy, of patronage, of commercialism reek longer with the smoke of sacrifice in our market-places. The economy that starves a consular to glut a congress district, the system that too often entrusts our commerce, our honor in foreign lands, to men untrained in languages or law, save the language of the lobby and the law of compensation, the commercialism that has made the profits of the counting-room blot out the duties of the caucus : these are the avenging furies that yet may whip us to destruction.
The expansion of our territories abroad accords but ill with the contraction of the merit system at home. With cheerful inconsistency we exhibit our goods to the South American nations in an international exposition, while to compete with the well paid experts who manage the business of Europe in Latin America we send untrained men with salaries too low to secure good service but too high for such as is given.
It will be well indeed if this new and mighty task that has
been put upon our shoulders forces us to establish our civil service, forces us to establish our consular service upon a isounder basis than mere political favoritism, and forces the United States to pay its public servants salaries commensurate with the labors imposed upon them, that the best blood and brains of the United States may not be drawn from public service by the greater rewards of private life.
Allen, Wood, Taft, three men that will forever be associated with high desert in American public life, have every one been forced to make a sacrifice before which this rich and prosperous country should hang its head in shame. The governor of British Guiana, with a population of 300,000, receives a salary of $24,000 a year. The governor of Porto Rico, with a population of 1,000,000, receives a salary of $8,000 a year.
European nations make the diplomatic, the civil, the colonial service attractive with a secure tenure of office dependent only on good behavior, and offer pensions for a life spent in the public service. Holland governs Java in peace, order, and prosperity, with a viceroy wielding absolute power and residents representing him by the side of the native rajahs, France admits colonial representatives to her legislative chamber in Paris, England varies her system from praotical independence to benevolent despotism, according to race and conditions. The systems of the nations differ, but the men active in each are subjected to rigid examinations, are promoted from grade to grade, are not subject to the whirling winds of party politics.
The clerk in a French consulate becomes subconsul at a small port in China, consul at Boston, chargé d'affaires at Washington. The district magistrate on a British rock in the West Indies becomes colonial secretary of Bermuda,
colonial secretary of Gilbraltar, colonial secretary of Guiana, governor of Guiana, and ends his career with the accolade of knighthood on his shoulders and the order of St. Michael and St. George on his breast.
I quote actual and not extraordinary cases in the diplomatic service of France, in the colonial service of Great Britain.
The educated youth of France, of Germany, of Holland, most of all of England, sees in the foreign, the diplomatic service, enormous possibilities for a permanent career in life with promotion for merit and an old age secure from want. There is not an empire in Europe in which the highest diplomatic rank is necessarily barred to the poor in purse. The only nation in the world whose niggardly salaries fail to meet the ordinary and necessary expenses of an ambassador, the only nation that simply cannot be represented by a poor man at the great courts of Europe, is the United States of America.
It is a terrible code that teaches that money making is the chief end of man and that success in the acquisition of wealth is to be the first condition of high public office. It is well to call a warning when above the cry from pulpit and platform, “Is it right?” there comes with increasing frequency the murmur of the exchanges, “ Will it pay ? ”
The opportunities for money-making under our flag are so vast that those who avail themselves of them are too prone to forget that flag and opportunities alike exist only because some Americans remember that above the privileges of American wealth are the duties of American citizenship.
One hundred years ago the young Boston orator, born in the same year as the Republic, warned his hearers in this hall of the perils of commercialism. I can conceive to-day,
no more hideous betrayal of the first principles of American manhood than the advice to young men publicly given by the president of the gigantic steel corporation that is controlling the industry of the world.
It is a melancholy comment on our civilization that the poor boy who has risen under its institutions to the head of the world's greatest industrial organization has, in the hour of his success, no better word to his fellows than a cynical hint to eschew the higher education and to leave the school for the work-bench, if possible, in childhood.
“Education is useless,” he cries, “ unless it can be coined." Literature, music, art, history, and philosophy have never a word for him. There is no money in them. The lofty impulse which thrusts the reformer into public life, the soldier into battle, that in losing all he may help his country, finds no echo in this latest product of American civilization, to whom Brutus is a fool and Iago a prophet.
Twice in history has supreme power been given to a nation that has made a god of riches, once to Carthage,once to Spain.) The great merchant princes of Carthage were ready that' Hannibal and his mercenaries should fight their battles. They, too, deified the education of the counting-house. They, too, hired from abroad their poets and soldiers and musicians and artists and lived but that they might accumulate the means of hiring-and the dust of the desert is their monument and the record of their destruction their only title to a page in history.
The discovery of a new continent opened a Golconda to Spain. Neither torture nor slavery was forbidden to the adventurer who sought to fill his purse; the rack and the stake awaited the student who dared to fill his mind. Yet the very riches of her galleons taught Spain's sea foes how