Page:Democratic Ideals and Reality (1919).djvu/27

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15
SOCIAL MOMENTUM

Incidentally, but unfortunately, they slow down its running. Stoppage of work, actual breakage of the implements of production and government, removal of practised administrators, and substitution of misfitting amateurs combine to reduce the rate of production of the necessaries of life, with the result that prices rise, and confidence and credit fall. The Revolutionary leaders are, no doubt, willing enough to be poor for a time in order to realise their ideals, but the hungry millions rise up around them. To gain time the millions are led to suspect that the shortage is due to some interference of the deposed powers, and the Terror inevitably follows. At last men become fatalist, and, abandoning ideals, seek some organiser who shall restore efficiency. The necessity is reinforced by the fact that foreign enemies are invading the national territory, and that less production and relaxed discipline have reduced the defensive power of the State. But the organiser needed for the task of reconstruction is no mere administrator; he must be able to design and make, and not merely to repair and lubricate social machinery. So Carnot, who 'organises victory,' and Napoleon with his Code Civil, win eternal fame by creative effort.