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spiritually dramatic imagination of the composer. Like Verdi's "Requiem," the "Dream of Gerontius" witnesses to a composer who has a vivid religious faith, much as the cathedrals of France or the old morality plays are artistic monuments to the faith of men in other ages. Whether this work will separately long endure no one with real critical judgment is likely to say; but it will be strange if it does not endure as at least an influence in the future development of oratorio. The typical British sacred cantata" has been an uninspired thing that has done much to vitiate English taste in music.
The Dream of Gerontius" has dealt a blow at the enervating musical tradition which has kept this form of music halfalive among English-speaking peoples.
Jewish Socialists Take up Co-operation
Among the Jews in the United States the idealism of the race has for many years expressed itself largely in the enthusiastic advocacy of revolutionary socialism. At the present time, however, the social unrest among them has resulted in an effort to give their ideals an immediate application in industrial life. In other words, they are turning from declamations about the co-operative commonwealth that is to be, to practical efforts to establish now co-operation in the management of the stores by which they are served and the little factories in which they work. This new movement, we are informed by a reliable Hebrew correspondent, was really inaugurated about three years ago, but during these three years has grown until the New York society has a membership of six hundred persons, the Philadelphia society a membership of fifteen hundred, the Boston society a membership of three hundred, and other societies are being formed rapidly in other Jewish centers. The New York society has for over a year conducted "a large and prosperous hat and shoe and men's furnishing goods establishment, which sells the goods made by the Jewish labor unions of the East Side workers." Most of the purchasers are in some way partners in the undertaking, and all of them of course will share in the profits from their purchases. Very recently the New York society opened a tea store, and is
hopeful of success along this line also. In Philadelphia the Jewish Co-operative Society has been in business for two years, and has recently purchased its own building. The hat and shoe stores conducted by the Philadelphia society have been prosperous and constantly growing establishments. In Worcester, Baltimore, New Britain, Newark, and other places where smaller societies have been started, plans for similar undertakings are being eagerly pushed. In some cases the capital for these undertakings is obtained by the sale of shares at five dollars each, and in other cases social entertainments are held to raise the needed funds. In New York the movement has awakened such popular interest that the Jewish daily paper "Forwards " now publishes a weekly department devoted to the cooperative cause, which is read with keen interest by the radicals of the Jewish quarter. In this country, under Gentile auspices, mercantile co-operation has never been a success; but it is possible that the business talent of the Jewish race, combined in this undertaking with its instinctive idealism, may lead to success.
Peace for Ireland
Last week Mr. Wyndham, Chief Secretary for Ireland, introduced the Government's Land Bill in the House of Commons. As already foreshadowed in The Outlook, the measure largely follows the recommendations of the now famous conference recently held between Irish landlords and tenants, when, for the first time in history, a plan of land settlement was agreed upon by the two parties.
Nine-tenths of the discontent in Ireland seems to have arisen from agrarian distress. This discontent has, in turn, caused violence and sedition, making still unhappier an island unhappy enough. by reason of falling prices for farm produce, industrial depression, absentee landlordism, and evictions. Conditions have improved, however, by reason, first of all, of Gladstone's Land Act of 1881. The great Liberal Premier and his coadjutors sowed the seed of which the Conservatives are now reaping the crop. The latter, however, are even outdistancing the Liberals in radical land reform. Mr.
Wyndham's bill is more sweeping than any measure ever presented by his political opponents; indeed, for proposing almost this very scheme Mr. Davitt was imprisoned in 1879. Mr. Wyndham's speech in introducing the new bill is likely to rank as the chief Irish event of our time. The great-grandson of Lord Edward Fitzgerald--the rebel who forfeited his life for the Irish cause-has gone a long way towards establishing his reputation as a statesman of the first rank.
Mr. Wyndham proposes to convert discontented tenants into contented proprietors, and at the same time amply to compensate the present owners. His system involves both cash and credit. He asks for a free grant-in-aid of $60,000,000 to be used to pay to the vender a percentage of the purchase-money; a percentage largest on small estates and smallest on large ones. A gift of $60,000,000-the first proposal by the Conservatives of such an outright bonus-is none too dear to pay for the settlement of the Irish land question; it would be cheap at a higher price. While cash aid is necessary, we attach greater importance to the credit operation. This is to be conducted by capitalizing the land at $500,000,000 and issuing stock upon it in yearly installments of about $25,000,000, guaranteed by the Government, unredeemable for thirty years, and bearing interest at two and three-quarters per cent. This plan appears to be both safe and profitable, since (1) the land has a much greater value than the sum (five hundred millions) to be lent on it, and (2), borrowing at a low rate of interest, the Government will repay itself at a higher, as three and one-quarter per cent. is to be paid on sums necessary to be advanced in order to induce purchases. Further, it is announced that, under the new régime of peace, the present enormous annual cost of Irish administration (largely on account of the inordinately large constabulary force) will be reduced by $1,250,000. Thus, if the interest charged on the free gift of sixty millions be put at $1,975,000, the maximum annual net cost to taxpayers may not now exceed two millions, or, at a later time, $725,000.
There is to be a very long period of repayment-sixty-eight and a half years. The present landowners need not fear
either confiscation or expatriation; they may retain their home demesnes and sporting rights, and continue as a support to industrial and social Ireland. Their land is to be appraised at values judicially established by the last Land Commission, and they are to be assured of a payment on liberal terms by the credit of the Imperial Government itself. The tenants may receive from the Government advances up to $2,500 on holdings in congested districts, and to $5,000 in non-congested districts. To all Irish tenants, however, past and present, the most astonishing and gratifying provision is that which includes evicted persons within the bill's scope. As reported in the despatches from London, any persons who within twenty years have been tenants may purchase holdings and obtain the necessary loans.
The act, if passed, will take effect November 1, 1903.
The whole plan shows that the party in power is determined to go to a great length if it be convinced that Irish landlords and tenants are prepared loyally to co-operate in making its scheme a success. We believe that such co-operation-really a contract— may be secured, if for no other reason than that the British Government has not lost one cent from advances made to eighty thousand peasant proprietors under the previous and less radical Land Act.
No bill ever presented in Parliament has commanded more instantaneous and unanimous support. Conservatives, Liberals, Nationalists, were for the nonce of one mind. Colonel Saunderson, the extremest advocate of landlordism, spoke with enthusiasm of the measure, and Mr. John Redmond, the leader of Irish tenantry representatives, praised the sincerity of the Government, and even claimed that the adoption of its scheme would not only settle the land questions, but might ultimately result in the complete disposal of all the controversies between England and Ireland. With Celtic eagerness, many Irishmen are expecting immediate results of this wholesale nature. They may well be warned that, even with the main point of contention settled, industrial depression, undue taxation, educational and religious difficulties, remain. Mr. Wyndham's treatment of the main cause of Irish discontent, however, is not only a great improvement. on his scheme of last year, but seems the
most promising effort ever made. We trust that a new era is about to dawn on a new Ireland.
public to intervene in a labor war in which public interests are concerned.
The doctrine of what is known as the "Manchester school" may be stated
The Coal Commission briefly in a sentence thus: Leave em
The question whether the operators were right or the miners were right is not the most important question which the Coal Commission report, summarized in these columns last week, has decided. In fact, it decides, as might have been anticipated, that neither party to the controversy was wholly right. It decides that the miners had a grievance, and that the operators were wrong in refusing to give any consideration to their grievance, for the report definitely adjudges them an increased wage. It decides that some of their claims were impracticable, for it adjudges against them on the question whether the coal shall be weighed. It condemns the State for leaving the operators to protect their own property by a coal and iron police which they pay for, a method which has been condemned again and again by public writers. It condemns the miners for acquiescing in crimes of violence perpetrated in sympathy with if not in support of the strike, crimes for which there is no justification, no excuse, scarcely a single apology. The Scotch verdict of "not proven" may be regarded as rendered on the charge brought against the miners' unions that they encouraged the crimes of violence, but they cannot be commended for having done all in their power to discourage such crimes. If the trades-unions were to expel from membership any man guilty of violence, and were to boycott any such person not a member of their order, it cannot be doubted that the crimes would be greatly diminished if not absolutely ended. It is, however, incidentally worthy of note that the murders, which were reported by some of the press as amounting to thirteen, have diminished, in the light of this investigation, to three in number.
But these aspects of the Commission's report are not the most vital nor the most important; there are two other aspects of this decision much more important: the illustration which it affords, first, of the right, and, secondly, of the power, of the
ployer and employed absolutely free. Regard labor as a marketable commodity. Let the laborer and the capitalist trade and dicker respecting this commodity. The laborer will require the highest price, the capitalist will offer the lowest price. In the conflict of the market which ensues justice will be secured. Freedom of contract will result in equal rights. In this doctrine there was some measure of truth. It was an advance on serfdom. So long as the market-place contained a number of individual capitalists bidding against one another, and a number of individual laborers bidding against one another, a rough kind of justice was secured, though it was often accompanied with gross injustice to the weaker and the less skillful. But presently employers combined, partly for the purpose of preventing labor competition in the market, partly for other reasons; then laborers combined, partly for other reasons, but chiefly to prevent competition in the labor market. Capitalists ceased to bid against one another; laborers ceased to bid against one another. Capitalists combined and offered an ultimatum; laborers combined and offered another ultimatum. Competition was changed into war, the market place into a battlefield.
Last spring a body of capitalists, who had control of all the anthracite coal in the country, and who were sufficiently combined not to bid against one another, were paying wages and furnishing conditions of labor which were unsatisfactory to the laboring men, and which the Commission now declare the laboring men had reason to be dissatisfied with. Then the laboring men combined and offered an ultimatum to the capitalists which they would not even consider as a basis for negotiations, and which the Commission now declare included some demands which it was impracticable to grant. Then began a tug of war between the capitalists at one end of the rope and the laborers at the other, and as fall approached it became evident that the Atlantic seaboard would be almost wholly deprived of its necessary fuel, while Western cities would be seriously inconven
ienced by the lessened supply. The Manchester theory of freedom of contract was proved inadequate, because it took no account of two important factors: on the one hand, the possibility of such com bination as would prevent the free com petition on which it relied for adjustment of wages; and, on the other, the inconvenience and distress to the public in case no such adjustment took place.
Then it was that President Roosevelt appeared upon the scene and invited the contending parties to a conference. He did this with the explicit statement that he was concerned only for the third party -the general public; that he took no part in the controversy as advocate either of employer or employed, of capitalist or laborer; that he took part solely as an informal representative of the great public, on whom the most disastrous effects of the strike were about to fall. The reluctant acceptance of his interference by the operators, the appointment of the Commission, the return of the miners to work, based upon the agreement by both sides that the decision of the Commission should be accepted; the decision of the Commission and its acceptance alike by miners, operators, and the general public, emphasize the fact that there is a third party. It is a National recognition of the truth that there are other rights besides individual property rights; that no man may use his property to the injury of the community, or refuse to use it if that refusal involves serious and widespread injury to the community; that private rights, so called, are subject to the superior right of the public to have its interests promoted, its welfare regarded, its rights respected.
There is nothing absolutely novel in this doctrine; there is only a novel illustration and application of it. Health boards which forbid private owners to pollute private streams in such a way as to promote disease, legislation forbidding child labor, regulating woman's labor, prescribing conditions in mines and factories, railroad commissions exercising supervisory power over great railroad corporations in their management of State and National highways, tenement-house laws determining the conditions under which landlords may build and tenants may occupy houses in the great cities, are all
illustrations of the same fundamental principle; but in this case that principle has been reasserted and carried a little further. The mine-owners may not do what they please with their mines. They may not quarrel with their workingmen and leave the community to freeze. Their right to own and operate the mines is a right conferred by society, and it must be exercised subject to the superior right of society to regulate the methods of operation, if it becomes necessary for the welfare of the community.
But the finding of this Commission and the general acquiescence in it illustrate not only the right of the people but their power. It was truly said, both by the President and to the President, that he had no legal power to compel either operators or miners to accept his arbitration. They might have refused his invitation, and no constable could have been sent after them. When the Commission was appointed, it was without legal power; it could not compel the attendance of witnesses or the production of papers. We do not think it had any power to administer oaths, or to punish for perjury in case of false testimony. Now that its decision is rendered, there is no legal power to enforce the decision. If the operators do not choose to pay the additional ten per cent. wages, there is no legal power to compel them to pay; if the miners do not choose to go on with their work under the conditions recommended by the Commission, there is no legal power to compel them to go on with their work, Everything from beginning to end is outside the domain of law. There is no coercive authority.
And yet it is quite apparent that neither miners nor operators have acted in the premises in a wholly voluntary manner. They have been coerced, not by law, but by public opinion. There are other powers in the country than those of sheriffs and constables; there are other incentives than those furnished by mere money considerations. Men care for the good opinion of their fellow-men; they are not wholly indifferent to the sufferings of their fellow-men. When the President proposed a method of adjustment which would give relief to the public, and the operators at first refused to consider this mode of relief, there was an outburst of
indignation against them. It found expression in some extraordinary propositions, such as that of the Democratic party of this State that the National Government take possession of the coalmines, under the right of eminent domain, and operate them for the benefit of the public. It found expression in other forms, perhaps more sane, although more passionate. The small body of men who had the legal ownership of the mines, and legal authority to close them and leave the public to suffer, were not willing to face this public opinion; they were not willing to be held responsible by the public for all the suffering which would be entailed if the mines were not reopened. When at length the conditions of reopening were agreed upon between the operators and Mr. Mitchell, the threatened opposition to continuance of work upon those conditions, emanating from a few of the wilder spirits among the miners, disappeared before this same public opinion. The President, by his action, focused that public opinion. He did what a burning-glass does when it concentrates the rays of the sun on a pile of leaves and starts them into flame. Behind the verdict of the Commission is this same public opinion. So far as we know, no miners' union and no operator, either corporate or individual, proposes to disregard the Commission's decision. This is because the public have accepted that decision and have made it their own. The power of concentrated public opinion has perhaps never had a more striking illustration than that which is furnished by the forcefulness of this wholly extra-constitutional and extra-legal proceeding for the adjustment of a great industrial controversy.
It is this which gives to the decision its greatest significance. This, too, indicates to the public the method by which they may avoid future controversies of this description or solve them if they arise. For this purpose it is only necessary to give to the President the power which the Canadian law gives to the Minister of Labor, to appoint at any time a commission to inquire into conditions which threaten seriously the National well-being. The power of a President to appoint such a commission would be simply power to turn on the light, to ascertain the facts, to determine the responsibility, and to con
centrate public opinion, making it effective by making it intelligent. The present conditions do not demonstrate, but they indicate, that a recognized body, impartial in its character and judicial in its spirit, with power simply to inquire into and report upon the facts, would possess all the power necessary for the adjustment of great industrial difficulties in which the interests of the third party, that is, the general public, are seriously concerned. With all that is said from time to time concerning the power of public opinion in America, we have not yet learned how to concentrate and so to utilize it. The Coal Commission's report, and its universal acceptance, indicate one way in which this dormant power can be used in the public interest and for the promotion of public justice.
Twenty years ago there was a dying church on the East Side of New York. Families that had lived in the vicinity were moving away. Their houses were being transformed into flats. The incoming population was to all appearance indifferent to what the church had to offer. The emptying houses were being refilled with more people than they contained before. The emptying church became each year emptier and emptier. The church was offered for sale. Nobody would buy it.
To-day that church is one of the greatest powers for good in that great city. Its services are thronged. Working men and women sit and kneel beside people of wealth and power. A Parish House joined to it affords recreation for those who have no other places of recreation than the saloons, the dance-halls, and the street, as well as for those who choose to go there from homes of refinement for the social life it affords. A trade school is maintained by the church to supply industrial training for the boys of the parish. Active organizations thrive-religious because ministering to needs that are fundamentally human. The church which two decades ago was itself in the grasp of death is to-day living in that community that the community itself may have life and have it more abundantly.