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boys and girls came crowding in, slipping into their places at the long narrow tables that cut across the great dining-rooms; and, when I looked at him, his eyes had filled with tears. He watched Madame and her husband, a physician, going from one child to another, examining their throats, or their eyes, taking them out to the little clinic for weighing, carrying the youngest in their arms, comforting a sorrowing mother whose little Marie had just died-while all the time the dozen white-uniformed young women hurried up and down the long rows, ladling the potato-stew and the rice dessert.
'I turned toward Mr. Hoover, and he spoke these true words: "The Women of Belgium have become the Mother of Belgium. In this room is the Relief of Belgium."
It has been for long our custom to commit the affairs of government to the hands of men whom we call statesmen or politicians. Sometimes the men of this class are indicated as belonging to it by a certain training, but too often only by a certain inclination. This inclination does not always coincide with special competence; in fact, it has so often been associated with incompetence that the name politician, even that of statesman, usually leaves a bad taste in the mouth.
It is unnecessary to try to point out in detail how this condition has come to exist. If we look to Great Britain we may find some explanation. There, government has been, even more than with us, a function of a class. But it has been a class possessing more elements of presumable special fitness and training than with us. Government service in Great Britain has been associated with birth, with inherited means, with a 'gentleman's education' at Oxford or Cambridge, and with
a certain civil-service apprenticeship which at least gave a degree of acquaintanceship with the general form of government organization and with traditionally approved method.
We of America, daughter of England, have undoubtedly taken over from the mother country the idea of government service committed to a special class; but we have not taken with it the idea of birth, means, or special education, either in university or civil service, as necessary prerequisites for admission to this class. And we have probably not suffered very much by not doing so, for Great Britain, in her present great emergency, in this modern trial by fire of her governmental form of organization and method, is rapidly casting her traditions aside— just as we are. A new element of society has been called for, and has conspicuously entered both British and American governments. It is being more quickly and largely used in Washington than in London, because tradition's hold on us is weaker and more easily broken. But we have no more conspicuous illustrations of this element in our government service than England's Geddes and Rhondda.
This new element, introduced to assist and strengthen and speed up government, is that of the business man, or, to be exact, of a certain type of business man. It is to the men and methods of business, successful business, that the world has turned in its stress and great need. Washington to-day is a strange sight. Where, of old, Senators of the Prince Albert coat, the large soft hat, and the heavy gold chain, and Congressmen of a basic bucolicness with a translucent veneer of the approved 'Meet Mr. Smith' type of geniality and cosmopolitanism, were the characteristic landfalls in any ‘seeing Washington' experience, now the megaphone is kept busy asking you to note
the passing, with vigorous step or in swift motor, of numerous less picturesque-looking men in sack suits, who are Mr. Jones and Mr. Brown and Mr. Robinson and Mr. Black, the heads of the National Red Cross, and War Industries Board, and Shipping Board, and Food Administration; and, at the same time, partner of J. P. Morgan, and president of this or that great railway system, and great merchant, and great inventor and manufacturer, and great mining engineer. And so on, with successive representatives of the successful business man introduced to your astonished ears and eyes here in Washington not New York!
There are also, in less number, to be sure, than the partners of Mr. Morgan, but still numerous enough to be noticeable, certain men of yet another class who have been brought abundantly to Washington. You will meet them often in the offices of the business men
more often, perhaps, than you will meet senators and congressmen and other traditional Washingtonians in these plain offices, more abundantly furnished with telephones and stenographers and straight-backed chairs than with rugs, deep leather rockers and other temptations to reminiscential social converse. These other men are named to you as Professor X and Doctor Z. They are men of long study of this or that specialized branch of natural or political science. The governing business men associate these experts, on leave from their universities, with them as advisers and helpers. They do not ask them for aid in organization or administration, but they ask them for special information, and to study this or that special problem on the basis of the fundamental scientific facts and methods with which they are already soundly familiar.
There is much importance for the present, and significance for the future,
in this calling on the proved business men and experts of the country to share in the administrative responsibility in this time of the nation's stress. It is a new phase of our cult of efficiency. And it is a splendid new illustration of the resources of democratic government. The response of the business men, that is, of the right type of business men, has been immediate and whole-hearted. They have dropped private affairs and money-making at the very moment when their undivided personal attention to these matters may mean more in the way of gain, or of minimizing loss, than ever before in their lives, perhaps. They come as volunteers, regardless of titles, of position, or popular recognition, to do their part in public service, to help make our government more effective in time of great emergency, to help save it in a crisis. And when the crisis is past, they will be willing, and will prefer, to go back to their private affairs.
But they will not all be allowed to do this, and others, later, will be called for. Because Washington and the country are learning something. We are taking a new step in the organization of our national administration. By a small angle, but definitely, we are changing the direction of our national evolution. It is going to be possible for our government to have always at its disposal, hereafter, the aid of men of a type new, with some notable exceptions, in public service, although as old in human society as human society itself. For the country is finding a new use for this type, and the type is finding in public service a new opportunity and aim and satisfaction.
On the other hand, as a consequence of the new experience, we are going, without any reciting of 'whereases' and 'resolveds,' or any formulation of rules or regulations, to release ourselves to some extent from government by talk
ers, wire-pullers, and favorite sons. The test in business organization is capacity, and so it is in government. And our government is now put, for the first time in a long period, rigidly to the test. Managing our government for the rest of our generation see so far, at least, plainly—is going to be a stressful undertaking of big business, expert administration, and willing and self-sacrificing national loyalty. Strong policies more than politics, active doing more than spellbinding, and resourcefulness more than tradition, are going to be characteristic of it. Hence we shall need the Hoovers and Hurleys, the Davisons and Baruchs, the Willards and Rosenwalds, and others like them, in governmental and national affairs for a long time to come.
And I much doubt, indeed, whether we shall ever again try to get on without them.
This is what I mean when I speak of Herbert Hoover as 'type.' He represents typically a class we are discovering in a new light; men of affairs willing to be men of public service, not for salary or glory or named position, but for the satisfaction of doing something for country and humanity. It seems hard to reconcile our carefully cultivated ideas of 'big business' with our ideas of public service. But we have before our eyes the material evidence that some big-business men can be willing and generous and honest public servants. Washington these days is not only a strange sight — it is an inspiring sight.
BY ARTHUR SYMONS
VOL. 121 - NO, 3
I SLEPT in Venice. The bright windy day
Over the long Giudecca luminous.
The night was bright and windy; and 't was thus
I fell asleep and let the moonlight fall
Across my face, and scatter on the wall;
Then, as I dreamed, the billowy darkness broke
And lo! a little core of light began
To waken softly, and its rays outran,
I floated forth lightly upon it, and
And rocked the house about me, and drove me on
The whole live Earth shrank like a startled snail
As moonlight in the moonlight, and now curled
And the waves drew me, and the treacherous night
Would fain have sucked me, and I saw the moon
Laughing an evil laugh, and the stars swoon
Into an ecstasy of merriment.
Then, knowing I was wholly lost, I sent
A great cry shouting up into the sky,
And leapt upright, and with an echoing cry
Over my head I heard the waters hiss;
And I fell slowly down the sheer abyss,
Age after endless age of such intense
And with the utter anguish I awoke,
BY ANDRÉ CHERADAME
GERMANY is, to all intent, mistress of Central Europe and the Balkans, of Turkey, and of Russia. As I write these lines (in December, 1917), the last part of the German scheme which I set forth in the June Atlantic is in preparation. All the disposable forces of Pan-Germany are concentrating on the Western front. If such a state of affairs is possible when the Entente has an abundance of admirable troops and boundless resources, it is because, as Mr. Lloyd George declared in his speech of November 12, with his wonted and most salutary frankness, after more than three years of war the Entente has no strategic plan. What is the cause of this unfortunate condition? That is what it is most important to ascertain first of all, for the Allies cannot think seriously of winning a decisive victory unless the problem of the strategy which is an indispensable necessity of their position is stated in such terms that it can readily be solved. But it has not yet been so stated. To be sure, Mr. Lloyd George dwelt upon the extreme gravity of the situation but, despite the fact that he is certainly the most keen-sighted of the leaders of the Entente in Europe, he did not point out definitely the positive remedies capable of putting an end to a state of affairs which is intolerable because it is infinitely dangerous.
The reason for this absence of concrete suggestions on Mr. Lloyd George's part is that, notwithstanding his great natural intelligence, he too is subject
to that profound failure of insight in respect to the conduct of the war which has befallen all the leading men of the Entente without exception. This failure, which is wholly independent of their will, is due mainly to the fact that the present leaders of the Entente, having one and all been firmly convinced that the war would never take place, had not trained themselves intellectually to carry it on when it should break out.
Moreover, for we must set things down as they are, the majority of these leaders of the Entente knew the political geography of Europe only in the most superficial way. As for the ethnographic detail which plays in this war a fundamental part that is still far from being understood, they know absolutely nothing about it. It is the same with the practical political economy of Central Europe, of the Balkans, and of Turkey, and with their national psychology. psychology. Now, these sciences geography, ethnography, political economy, and national psychology — are absolutely indispensable to the wise conduct of the war; and they do not teach themselves. It is altogether impossible to become familiar with them without hard work, long continued. That is why, even assuming that all the guiding spirits of the Entente are endowed with innate genius, it is absolutely impossible for them, held fast as they are at every moment by the daily, always urgent, demands of a war which took them entirely by surprise and in which they had to improvise everything, to acquire during the con