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tween nations really mean. In the fight for Italian unity waged by Mazzini and Garibaldi, and in the heroic efforts of the Hungarian patriot, Kossuth, the heart of the democracy beat true to their cause. When the governing classes cast their influence on the side of the Southern States of America, it was workmen like Mr. W. R. Cremer and other prominent labor leaders who ranged behind Mr. John Bright the force of working-class opinion. It was there, too, on behalf of the suffering Armenians, and the spectacle of gallant little Greece throwing herself against the savage power of Turkey fired the imagination of the people. Those so-called Imperialists who can justify war to secure political reforms in a foreign State, would not risk anything to protect helpless men, women and children, for whom we had undertaken treaty obligations. For war to take permanent hold of the people, it must be for higher things than anything sought in the conflict with the two Dutch Republics. Indeed, if it rested with the democracy in England, so far as its mind can be ascertained, the resort to the sword would be a thing of the past. International arbitration as a practical proposal came from the working classes, and their leaders advocated it when the wise and eminent ones treated it as a pious opinion and its advocates as mere visionaries who were simple enough to believe in the Christianity that other people professed as a creed. It was Mr. Cremer who, in 1893, moved in the House of Commons a resolution in favor of a treaty of arbitration with the United States of America, which was carried without opposition, after Mr. Gladstone had given it his approval. That was followed by a petition to the United States Senate, which contained over 7,000 signatures of representative workmen, all of whom held some office in an organization. A similar one was presented to Lord Salisbury, to which were appended over 5,000 signatures. These documents prove in themselves how strong is the movement for international peace in the ranks of organized labor.

It is not merely that war is regarded as a barbarous method of settling disputes and a cruel waste of precious human life and treasure. It is all that, and men are beginning to question either its utility or morality. But the real fear is not so much what war costs in blood and extra taxation as the militarism it sets up. Already, the strain on our resources caused by the campaign in South Africa has begun to clothe with flesh those shadowy hints at con

scription which have occasionally of late been thrown out. It is surely a dear price to pay for adding two republics to the Empire, even though it does increase the profits of gold mining from fifteen to forty-five per cent. Besides, the working classes have begun to doubt the "markets" policy of Mr. Chamberlain, and well they may. As the Financial Reformer showed some few months ago, this inflated Imperialism does not pay. From 1879 to 1894 the naval and military expenditure was £138,070,000; from 1893 to 1898 it rose to £187,058,000, the difference between these two periods of five years being an increase of £48,988,000 during the latter term. With the exports of British produce to all our colonies and possessions, it was just the reverse. Thus, from 1879 to 1884 the exports amounted to £403,799,000, while from 1893 to 1898 the total fell to £391,225,000, a decrease of £12,574,000. These figures do not make up a good balance sheet, and men now realize the hard fact that British trade in the main is done much nearer home, and that we had better pay more attention to our industrial equipment. The real battle of the future will be in the workshop, and it is technical education, not military service, which will give us our supremacy over Continental and American competitors. This is how the workers reason, and it leads them to fear the spread of militarism. So long as the Government encourages the idea that the Empire is in danger, conscription will excite little concern, but the moment it is put forward as a serious proposal the work people of the country will not hesitate in their resistance to it.

Militarism is an evil spirit not confined to the barrackroom; it creeps into the school and the workshop. Compulsory military service would change the old order of things, and would deaden that sense of self-sufficiency which has been the glory and strength of British workmen. They are willing to defend their island home, but that does not need conscription. But they do not bow down before the Imperial idea or indulge in visions of British supremacy regardless of the cost. To them England, not India, is the centre of empire, and, while by no means parochial in their outlook, they count it dear to add to the burden of the nation by imposing conscription on its sons for the sake of additional territory. Consolidation, not expansion, represents the democratic idea of Imperial policy. When Lord Salisbury declared that, in prosecuting this war in South Africa, England sought neither land

nor gold, he did much to disarm working-class criticism, but that wholesome doctrine has now been openly repudiated. The wiping out of the two Republics is now the Governmental dogma, and it is not one likely to find favor with the democracy. Though few workmen are pro-Boers, the courage the Boers have displayed and the tenacity with which they fight for their independence has won general admiration for a foe so worthy as these Dutchmen. It only needs the Government to push the conquest of the Republics to the extreme to make a goodly company of pro-Boers. Not long since, a well-known Trade Union leader declared to me that, so strongly did he feel our conduct to be unjust in this war, if he were unmarried he would attempt to join the armies of the Republics.

With a deep conviction that the gold mines are the source of all the trouble, and that the desire to make the Rhodesians supreme in the Transvaal was the most powerful motive behind the capitalist agitation, there is a rising volume of organized working class opinion in the United Kingdom against the war. The fact that President Krüger technically commenced hostilities, and that so far we have only been engaged in an attempt to repel the invaders, undoubtedly stills the voice of criticism. But this must not be mistaken for an endorsement of Mr. Chamberlain's diplomacy, nor as an indication that the democracy will look on indifferently while the all too few republics of the world are made less by two.




THE United States, at the close of the nineteenth century, is undergoing a change from an agricultural and raw-material producing state to an industrial state. So long as we furnished Europe food and raw material to be converted into highly manufactured articles and to be resold to us and the other markets of the world at a profit, there was little friction in commercial relations. Balances, in many cases, were in our favor, to be sure, but what did that signify when the wheat, corn, flour, cattle, cotton, leather, oil, wood, tobacco, copper and other articles of export were all converted by European labor into something more valuable, and became a source of wealth to the countries purchasing the goods? Our commercial treaties are ancient and a little lame in spots, our consular service not trained in commercial matters (although many of its members are efficient and creditable representatives), our diplomatic service liable to constant change, to say nothing of other defects, such, for example, as the utter lack of banking facilities in our foreign trade machinery. In spite, however, of these and kindred obstacles, we have up to the present time found little difficulty in sending the products of our strongest industries into the world's markets, especially into the European markets, which absorb nearly four-fifths of our foreign exports, and whence we draw from two-thirds to one-half of our imported merchandise. Not that we have ceased to produce for export agricultural products and raw materials. Far from it; for the year 1898 registered the high-water mark of our agricultural exports, exceeding in value $858,000,000. Relatively speaking, therefore, our exports of agricultural products retain about the usual proportion, namely, nearly 71 per cent. of the total foreign

exports; but, actually, the exports of manufactured products have been steadily increasing, as a glance at the following table shows:

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The considerable falling off in exports of agricultural products for 1899 has increased the percentage of manufactured products, which, without including mining and forest products and fisheries, represent nearly one-third of our exports for the last fiscal year. It is this particular phase of our foreign commerce which has attracted the attention of the European economists; and the possibilities of the United States in the great distribution of manufactured and natural products has, during the last year or two, been very earnestly discussed in London, Paris and Berlin. The above table shows an increase of over two hundred million dollars in value in exports of manufactured products since 1886. The European manufacturer looks upon this increase with alarm, and the refrain of his song is, If the United States continues to do more and more manufacturing for itself, and also to meet the products of our mills and factories in the open market, we must ultimately lose the seventy-four million of customers across the Atlantic. This is particularly the German method of argument. The German statesman sees, within the last ten years, a falling off of exports from his own country to the United States, and an increase of imports from the United States to Germany, and he becomes anxious. He attributes it to our "vigorously carried out protective system," and in some quarters, at least, proposes to meet it with more vigorous restrictions on the part of Germany. Last spring one of the ablest German statesmen actually made a speech in the Imperial Diet, the text of which was the continual decrease of the exports of agricultural products from the United States and the continual increase of the exports of manufactures. This in face of the fact that the year was the greatest in the history of this country for agricultural exports, and exceeded by over fifty million dollars the highest previous record that of 1892. No one in the Reichstag seems to have raised the point.

VOL. CLXX.-No. 521.


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