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IV. POLITICAL GENIUS OF VARIOUS NATIONS
38. Influences that affect the natural ability of nations. Galton points out certain conditions that affect national ability :
I shall have occasion to show that certain influences retard the average age of marriage, while others hasten it; and the general character of my argument will be to prove, that an enormous effect upon the average natural ability of a race may be produced by means of those influences. I shall argue that the wisest policy is that which results in retarding the average age of marriage among the weak, and in hastening it among the vigorous classes ; whereas, most unhappily for us, the influence of numerous social agencies has been strongly and banefully exerted in the precisely opposite direction. ...
The average age of marriage affects population in a threefold manner. Firstly, those who marry when young have the larger families; secondly, they produce more generations within a given period, and therefore the growth of a prolific race, progressing as it does, "geometrically,” would be vastly increased at the end of a long period by a habit of early marriages; and, thirdly, more generations are alive at the same time among those races who marry when they are young. ...
The time may hereafter arrive, in far distant years, when the population of the earth shall be kept as strictly within the bounds of number and suitability of race as the sheep on a well-ordered moor, or the plants in an orchard house; in the meantime, let us do what we can to encourage the multiplication of the races best fitted to invent and conform to a high and generous civilization, and not, out of a mistaken instinct of giving support to the weak, prevent the incoming of strong and hearty individuals.
The long period of the dark ages under which Europe has lain is due, I believe in a very considerable degree, to the celibacy enjoined by religious orders on their votaries. Whenever a man or woman was possessed of a gentle nature that fitted him or her to deeds of charity, to meditation, to literature, or to art, the social condition of the time was such that they had no refuge elsewhere than in the bosom of the Church. But the Church chose to preach and exact celibacy. The consequence was that these gentle natures had no continuance, and thus, by a policy so singularly unwise and suicidal that I am hardly able to speak of it without impatience, the Church brutalized the breed of our forefathers. She acted precisely as if she had aimed at selecting the rudest portion of the community to be, alone, the parents of future generations. She practiced the arts which breeders would use who aimed at creating ferocious, currish and stupid natures. No wonder that club law prevailed for centuries over Europe; the wonder rather is that enough good remained in the veins of Europeans to enable their race to rise to its present, very moderate level of natural morality.
The policy of the religious world in Europe was exerted in another direction, with hardly less cruel effect on the nature of future generations, by means of persecutions which brought thousands of the foremost thinkers and men of political aptitudes to the scaffold, or imprisoned them during a large part of their manhood, or drove them as emigrants into other lands. In every one of these cases, the check upon their leaving issue was very considerable. Hence the Church, having first captured all the gentle natures and condemned them to celibacy, made another sweep of her huge nets, this time fishing in stirring waters, to catch those who were the most fearless, truth-seeking, and intelligent in their modes of thought, and therefore the most suitable parents of a high civilization, and put a strong check, if not a direct stop, to their progeny. Those she reserved on these occasions to breed the generations of the future were the servile, the indifferent, and, again, the stupid. Thus, as she — to repeat my expression — brutalized human nature by her system of celibacy applied to the gentle, she demoralized it by her system of persecution of the intelligent, the sincere, and the free. ...
It is very remarkable how large a proportion of the eminent men of all countries bear foreign names, and are the children of political refugees, - men well qualified to introduce a valuable strain of blood. We cannot fail to reflect on the glorious destiny of a country that should maintain, during many generations, the policy of attracting eminently desirable refugees, but no others, and of encouraging their settlement and the naturalization of their children.
No nation has parted with more emigrants than England, but whether she has hitherto been on the whole a gainer or a loser by the practice, I am not sure. No doubt she has lost a very large number of families of sterling worth, especially of laborers and artisans; but, as a rule, the very ablest men are strongly disinclined to emigrate; they feel that their fortune is assured at home, and unless their spirit of adventure is overwhelmingly strong, they prefer to live in the high intellectual and moral atmosphere of the more intelligent circles of English society, to a selfbanishment among people of altogether lower grades of mind and interests. England has certainly got rid of a great deal of refuse through means of emigration. She has found an outlet for men of adventurous and Bohemian natures, who are excellently adapted for colonizing a new country, but are not wanted in old civilizations; and she has also been disembarrassed of a vast number of turbulent radicals and the like, men who are decidedly able but by no means eminent, and whose zeal, self-confidence, and irreverence far outbalance their other qualities.
The rapid rise of new colonies and the decay of old civilizations is, I believe, mainly due to their respective social agencies, which in the one case promote, and in the other case retard, the marriages of the most suitable breeds. In a young colony, a strong arm and an enterprising brain are the most appropriate fortune for a marrying man, and again, as the women are few, the inferior males are seldom likely to marry. ...
The best form of civilization in respect to the improvement of the race, would be one in which society was not costly; where incomes were chiefly derived from professional sources, and not much through inheritance; where every lad had a chance of showing his abilities, and, if highly gifted, was enabled to achieve a first-class education and entrance into professional life, by the liberal help of the exhibitions and scholarships which he had gained in his early youth; where marriage was held in as high honor as in ancient Jewish times; where the pride of race was encouraged (of course I do not refer to the nonsensical sentiment of the present day, that goes under that name); where the weak could find a welcome and a refuge in celibate monasteries or sisterhoods, and lastly, where the better sort of emigrants and refugees from other lands were invited and welcomed, and their descendants naturalized.
39. National psychology. Some fundamental contrasts between Anglo-Saxon and Latin political psychology are stated by Coolidge as follows: 1
Nations, like individuals, are often inconsistent, thereby laying themselves open to the charge of dishonesty on the part of uncharitable neighbors. This is particularly true of the Anglo-Saxon peoples, whose minds are not so uncompromisingly logical as those of the French or the Russians; it explains, for instance, why the English have so often been accused of hypocrisy. When the Englishman or the American finds that his premises lead him to conclusions that he dislikes, he is pretty sure to kick over the traces and, regardless of the premises, to accept other conclusions that suit him better. He never allows previous logical subtleties to tempt him into a position which his common sense condemns; but guided by a sound instinct, he acts as he thinks best in each instance, careless of the fact that, by any course of general reasoning, he will appear inconsistent. For a striking example of the difference between Latin and Anglo-Saxon political conceptions, we have but to compare two well-known sayings, — the " Périssent les colonies plutôt qu'un
1 Copyright, 1908, by The Macmillan Company.
principe” of the French Revolution, and Cleveland's famous remark, " It is a condition which confronts us, not a theory.” It is highly characteristic that even Jefferson, perhaps the most theoretical of all American statesmen, accepted without hesitation the responsibility of the purchase of Louisiana, although he believed that he had no constitutional right to take such action.
40. Types of statesmen. The types of statesmen required in Europe and in America are described as follows by Bryce : 1
In such countries as England, France, Germany, and Italy there is room and need for five sorts of statesmen. Men are wanted for the management of foreign and colonial policy, men combining the talents of a diplomatist with a wide outlook over the world's horizon. The needs of social and economic reform, grave in old countries with the mistakes of the past to undo, require a second kind of statesman with an aptitude for constructive legislation. Thirdly there is the administrator who can manage a department with diligence and skill and economy. Fourthly comes the parliamentary tactician, whose function it is to understand men, who frames cabinets and is dexterous in humoring or spurring a representative assembly. Lastly we have the leader of the masses, who, whether or no he be a skillful parliamentarian, thinks rather of the country than of the chamber, knows how to watch and rouse the feelings of the multitude, and rally a great party to the standard which he bears aloft. The first of these has no need for eloquence; the second and third can get on without it; to the fourth it is almost, yet not absolutely, essential ; it is the life breath of the fifth.
Let us turn to America. In America there are few occasions for the first sort of statesman, while the conditions of a Federal government, with its limited legislative sphere, are unfavorable to the second, as frequently changing cabinets are to the third. It is chiefly for persons of the fourth and fifth classes we must look. Persons of those classes we shall find, but in a different shape and guise from what they would assume in Europe. American politics seem at this moment to tend to the production of two types, the one of whom may be called par excellence the man of the desk or of the legislature, the other the man of the convention and the stump. They resemble the fourth and fifth of our European types, but with instructive differences.
1 By permission of The Macmillan Company.
ORIGIN OF THE STATE
I. GENERAL PROCESS OF STATE FORMATION
41. The origin of the state. The gradual historical process by which the state arose, and some of the main phases in its primitive transitions, are indicated by Burgess in the following:
We know nothing of the influences and the conditions under which the human mind first awakened to the consciousness of the state, and felt the impulse to exert itself for the objective realization of that consciousness. We are fully warranted, however, by the status of human society which history first presents us, in concluding that this great light did not come to all at once. The period of barbaric liberty and self-help permits and promotes the development of the few mighty personalities and their elevation to those heights of superiority over their fellows which the dawn of civilization first illumines. These few great personalities form the nuclei of political organization. They are, at first, priests rather than statesmen. They are inspired by the belief that what they behold in themselves is divinity. They so represent it to the masses of the uninitiated. They invent the means to impress this belief upon the masses. They establish a cult, and from behind its power and influence they govern the people. The religious sanction secures obedience to the laws of the state. Religion and law, church and state, are confused and mingled. They are joint forces in the period when the human race emerges from barbarism and enters upon its course of civilization ; but the state is enveloped by the church, and exists only by the moral support which it receives from the church. Under this form the people are disciplined and educated. The consciousness of the state spreads wider. Nonpriestly personalities begin to be touched by its light. They are forced thereby either to regard themselves as priests, or to reflect that the state, in its subjective character, is not a special revelation of the divinity. They either seek entrance into the ranks of the priesthood or begin to dispute its exclusive political powers. The resistance of the priesthood to these movements provokes the view on the part of the newly enlightened that the existing system is a pious fraud, and incites