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horsepower driving generators in thou- to ensure its arrival in thirty-six hours. sands of stations from which electric Were he called upon to revisit England, energy is distributed to our homes and there would be no ten weeks' voyage factories and transportation lines to in a sailing packet, but the speed and perform innumerable services. Imag- luxury of a 50,000-ton liner, oil-fired ine, if you can, the stunning impact of and turbine-driven. At Portsmouth, the impressions that would crowd the where he calmed the waves with oil, he day of his return. With what amaze would find, instead of wooden frigates ment would he converse over a wire and smooth-bore cannon, submarines from Philadelphia to San Francisco or and armored superdreadnoughts, a hear a voice transmitted through the single gun of which could sink the ether from a point halfway around the entire British Navy as he knew it. world. So commonplace a thing as a Did he wish to proceed to Paris? He street car would leave him open- would have only to take passage in an mouthed with wonder, which might airplane. well increase at sight of an electric The gardeners Franklin knew grew locomotive, hauling its hundreds of peas for pleasure or profit. Mendel tons of freight.
grew them and established the laws of In great industrial plants he would heredity. Farming, which was a wholly find electricity driving machines of an empirical occupation, is now the special intricacy, precision, and productive concern of a great governmental depower beyond the imagination of his partment devoted to the development generation, or at work in decomposing of scientific agriculture. Here Frankcells, and in the heart of glowing fur- lin would learn of soil analysis and seed naces fashioning new products. In selection, of hardier and more prolific university and corporation laborato varieties of plants, of better breeds of ries would be revealed to him the mar- animals, of methods of control of such vels of the X-rays, photography, the virulent diseases as splenic fever, fascinating world of the microscope, anthrax, hog cholera, and bovine balances weighing 1/100,000th of a tuberculosis. He would find his own milligramme, the spectroscope, and all experiments with gypsum extended to those instruments of precision and re- cover the whole field of chemical search which are the tools of the Fifth fertilizers, the air itself converted into Estate. Elements unknown to him an inexhaustible reservoir of plant would be placed in his hand; fascinating food, and the efficiency of farm labor experiments performed to demonstrate multiplied many times by ingenious properties and relationships beyond his agricultural machines. dream. The air, which he studied with He would find household economics reference to winds, combustion, and revolutionized: the town pump reventilation, would be reduced before placed by running water; electricity a him to a liquid as obvious as water, servant in the house; the food supply though boiling on a cake of ice. broadened and stabilized; domestic
Where once the postboy and the post drudgery assumed by laundry, bakery, chaise were familiar he would find and factory; tasteful clothing within our roads crowded with automotive the reach of all; transportation and vehicles and the country gridironed by amusement for the multitude, and the the railways. Did he wish to send a history of yesterday sold for a penny; letter across the continent, he would innumerable new industries, based on have only to commit it to the air mail the findings of the laboratory, now
offering means of decent livelihood to average man, and added so greatly to millions, opening careers to thousands. his comfort and well-being, we may
In great hospitals, permeated with reasonably inquire, 'What are the the scientific spirit and equipped with recompenses of the Fifth Estate?' many new and strange devices for the On the material side they have alalleviation of human suffering, he most invariably been curiously inadewould hear of the incalculable benefits quate and meagre. It is incomparably which medical and surgical science more profitable to draw the Gumps for have conferred upon mankind. He a comic supplement than to write the would see the portraits and listen to Origin of Species. There is more money the story of Pasteur and Lister and in chewing-gum than in relativity. Loeb and Ehrlich. We know to-day Lobsters and limousines are acquired with what joy and relief the world far more rapidly by the skillful thrower would welcome a veritable cure for of custard pies in a moving-picture cancer, but we can little realize the studio than by the no less skillful emotion with which one like Franklin demonstrator of the projection of would learn in a single afternoon of the electrons. The gate receipts of an germ theory of disease, of preventive international prize-fight would support serums, of antisepsis, of chemotherapy, a university faculty for a year. of the marvelous complexity of the One may recall that Lavoisier was blood stream and the extraordinary guillotined by a republic that ‘had no influence and potency of the secretions need of chemists'; that Priestley was of the ductless glands. What appraisal driven from his sacked and devastated would he make of the service to human- home; that Leblanc, after giving the ity which, in little more than a gen- world cheap alkali, died in a French eration, has mitigated the horrors of poorhouse; that Langley was crushed surgery by the blessings of anæsthesia by ridicule and chagrin in his last days. and antisepsis, which has controlled A month before the war who could rabies, yellow fever, typhoid fever, have believed that within a few years tetanus, which is stamping out tuber- the Fifth Estate in Russia would be culosis, curing leprosy, and providing utterly destroyed and in Germany and specifics for other scourges of the race? Austria existing at the very edge of What values would he put on insulin, starvation? What has happened there thyroxin, adrenalin? The physician is may happen again elsewhere if the no longer compelled to rely on herbs and intelligence of the world does not simples and drastic mineral compounds assume and hold its proper place in the of doubtful value and uncertain action direction of national and world affairs. Compounds of extraordinary potency, In the preface to his recent Lehrbuch isolated or synthesized by the chemist, der Photochemie Professor Plotnikow are now available to allay pain, cor- has written: 'Home and property were rect disorders, prolong life, and even to pillaged by bands of idle Russians who restore mentality and character. used my library for cigarette papers.
With contributions to their credit Hunger, misery, want, and personal which have so enriched and stimulated insecurity, often approaching fear for the intellectual life; which have brought my life, were the constant accompanithe peoples of the earth together into ment of my labors.' closer touch than English shires once One is reminded that Carlyle, on the were; which have revolutionized indus- authority of Richter, says: 'In the try, enlarged the opportunity of the island of Sumatra there is a kind of “Light-chafers,” large fireflies, which questioning and where wonder grows people stick upon spits, and illuminate with knowledge. Together they share the ways with at night. Persons of the interests, the communion of spirit, condition can thus travel with a the labors and the triumphs of the pleasant radiance, which they much fraternity of Science. The Law of admire. Great honor to the fireflies, Diminishing Returns exerts a control But !!
from which there is no escape in It is not becoming that the world agriculture, industry, and business. expect the light to shine indefinitely Research alone is beyond the twelvewhen carrying a lantern is often less mile limit of its inhibitions. remunerative than carrying a hod. If the heavens declare the glory of The money and the years of study God that glory is surely made more required for special training are not manifest by telescope and spectroscope. recognized as invested capital, and the If the whirling nebulæ and the stars in return from a decade of research is their courses reveal Omnipotence, so often taxed as the income of a year. do the electrons in their orbits reveal Professorial salaries move forward as His presence in universes brought into slowly as a glacier, but they seldom being by the striking of a match. The leave a terminal moraine. Yet teaching laboratory may be a temple as truly as is our most important business; for a the church. The laws of Nature are the failure to pass on for a single generation Will of God, their discovery is a revelathe painfully accumulated knowledge tion as valid as that of Sinai, and by of the race would return the world to their observance only can man hope to barbarism.
come into harmony with the universe Though material wealth is rarely and with himself. acquired by the Fifth Estate, they have There has been a general and ready the riches of the royal man, defined by acceptance by the world of the material Emerson as ‘he who knows what benefits of science, while its contribusweets and virtues are in the ground, tions to sociology and ethics are as the waters, the plants, the heavens, generally ignored as guides to human and how to come at these enchant- conduct. Yet science proclaims new ments.' Their wealth is in the King commandments as inflexible as those dom of the Mind. It is inalienable and engraved on stone, and furnishes what tax-exempt. It may be shared and yet Wiggam has reverently termed “the retained.
true technology of the Will of God.' A recent survey by a national maga- Science has so drawn the world zine would seem to indicate that the together and so rapidly remoulded majority of men have drifted into their civilization that the social structure is vocations with little effort of selection now strained at many points. Stateand that a very large proportion ulti- craft and politics, law and custom, lack mately regret their choice. This is the plasticity of science and are now in seldom true of members of the Fifth imperfect contact with the contours of Estate. Theirs is a true vocation, a their new environment. The result, as calling and election. It brings intel- events have shown, is friction and conlectual satisfactions more precious than fusion. Though our civilization is fine gold. They live in a world where based on science, the scientific method common things assume a beauty and a has little place in the making of our meaning veiled from other eyes; a laws. Office does not seek the man in world where revelation follows skillful the laboratory, and candidates are not
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pictured as engaged in any activity visualizes it as the stern and vigorous that might suggest a superior intelli- chastener and corrector which will gence. They are shown milking cows, ultimately save the race and usher in pitching hay in new blue overalls, or the new day of light and reason. helping with the family washing. “Knowledge comes, but wisdom linRecently, in the senate of a New gers, and democracy levels down as England state, there was presented the well as up. Even in Boston cigars have edifying spectacle of the presiding replaced books on a corner famous for officer, being shaved by a barber, called a century of literary associations. The to the rostrum, while senators were world is wrong because few men can reading the encyclopædia into the think. It will not be made right until record. To expedite further the public those who cannot think trust those business sundry members of the cham- who can. When its foundations are so ber were presently gassed with bromine. obviously out of joint humanity still Does not this suggest that a few clings tenaciously to fossilized precepts chemists might with advantage be and opinions and is as resentful of sugdistributed among our legislative gested change as in the days of Galileo. bodies?
Despite the pressure of new ideas, It is claimed that fifty per cent of the education must still, to be acceptable, members of state legislatures in Amer- follow old conventional lines. ica have never been through high school and that only one in seven has been through college. We see in the ranks of science knowledge without power and Let us not deceive ourselves. Huin politics power without knowledge. man life is still a hard and fearsome An electorate, which regards itself as thing. Mankind is required to mainfree, listens to the broadcast noise of tain existence in a world in which, as manufactured demonstrations and is Kipling has said, 'any horror is crediblind to the obvious mechanics of ble. More than a hundred years ago synthetic bedlam. The result is too De Quincey wrote, “We can die, but often government by gullibility, propa- which of us, knowing, as some of us ganda, catchwords, and slogans, in- do, what is human life, could, were he stead of government by law based on consciously called upon to do it, face, facts, principles, intelligence, and good without shuddering, the hour of birth?' will.
But little more than yesterday Henry As President Stanley Hall once said, Adams closed his Education with the ‘Man has not yet demonstrated that expression of the hope that perhaps he can remain permanently civilized. some day, for the first time since man Many thoughtful people have been led began his education among the carnito question the ultimate effect of vores, he would find a world that science upon civilization. We all sensitive and timid natures could recognize the utility of matches, but we regard without a shudder. keep them away from children. Mean- Everywhere there is upheaval and while, science puts dynamite and unrest. “The machine,' to quote Dr. TNT, poison gas, airplanes, and motor Elton Mayo, 'runs to an accompanicars at the disposal of criminals and ment of human reverie, human pessileaders of the mob. Bertrand Rus- mism, and sense of defeat.' sell, in Icarus, sees in science the ulti- We are everywhere overburdened by mate destroyer. Haldane, in Dædalus, unnecessary illness, crushing taxation, extravagant and inefficient govern- culable advantage of us all. Its knowlments, huge expenditures for triviali- edge of material facts, of natural and ties, and the appalling waste of effort, economic laws, of the factors governing material, and resources. We are ham- race development and human relations; pered by class suspicion and misun- its imagination, vision, and its open derstanding, racial antagonisms, the mind, should be brought to bear effecinhibitions of organized labor, and the tively in the formulation of national lack of imagination in high places. Life policies and the solution of governin general is on a low cultural plane mental problems. There is an alternaand bound by custom and tradition. tive before us, which has recently been
One hundred years of science have defined with somewhat surprising frankfailed to satisfy the cravings of human- ness by Warren S. Stone, President of ity. Chesterton finds science 'a thing the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engion the outskirts of human life — it has neers, perhaps the most conservative nothing to do with the centre of human of the labor unions. Mr. Stone says: — life at all.' We do not, of course, agree ‘But until labor, in the inclusive with him, but we must still meet the sense in which I am using it, secures challenge of John Jay Chapman, who control of legislative and executive declares: ‘Science, which filled the air branches of the national and state with so large a bray, is really a branch governments, and through control of of domestic convenience, a department the executive branch secures control of for the study of traction, cookery, and the judiciary, labor is in continuous wiring. The prophet-scientists have peril of seeing its gains wiped out and lived up to none of their prospectuses.' its progress retarded by hostile legisThe fault, however, as Wiggam points lation or unfriendly court decisions. out, is not with science, nor with the Our countrymen may well consider scientists. It is with those who ‘have whether they prefer participation in mainly used the immense spiritual government by the Fifth Estate to the enterprise of science to secure five-cent benefit of all or control of government fares, high wages, and low freight by labor unions in the interest of labor. rates,' when it should have 'ushered Since most of the troubles that beset in a new humanism.'
mankind have their origin in human Thus we still encourage race deteri- nature it would seem worth the while oration, still carry the burden of the of those who make our laws to study unfit, still cultivate national antipa- and apply the findings of the biologists thies, still are breeding from poor stock, and psychologists as to what human and witnessing with equanimity the nature really is and the springs of its suppression of the best.
motivation. The history of aristocracies, feudal Plato called democracy 'the best ism, the Church, the guilds, and the form of bad government. It will be soviets has amply demonstrated that the best form of good government only no one class possesses the qualities as it develops the capacity to breed required for the government of all leaders and the faith to trust them. classes, and we cannot claim them for The quality of our children will deterthe Fifth Estate. We can, however, mine the quality of our democracy. claim with full assurance that the If our laws and mores and economic Fifth Estate possesses many qualities, structure continue to discourage breednow practically ignored, which could ing from our best strains, if there is to be utilized in government to the incal- be no adequate recompense for service