Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 47.djvu/244

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234
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

traction in plants may be said to be less than in animals. It must be borne in mind that the mechanism of each has developed the rate of movement best adapted to its needs, and that this rapidity of movement is, furthermore, conditioned by the metabolic activity of the organism which supplies the necessary energy.

In recapitulation it may be said that the primal irritability of protoplasm has been developed in the motile, destructively metabolic animals through the phases of reflex into sensorial action, while in the fixed, constructively metabolic plants the main line of advance has been, not toward sensorial action, nor along a line parallel to it, but at a wide angle from it, into a series of highly specialized forms, whose delicacy of mechanism and efficiency is as commensurate with the complex necessities of the plant as those of the sensorial apparatus to the animal.


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THE SPIRIT OF MILITARISM.

By A. B. RONNE.

IN the Principles of Sociology (Volume I) Herbert Spencer draws a sharp and clear distinction between two types of society — the militant and the industrial. Leaving out of consideration the analogy between the animal and the social organism in the development of the various systems — the regulating, the sustaining, and the distributing it will be readily conceded that from the view of sociology the last of these two types — the industrial — stands highest in the scale of development as implying voluntary co-operation among the members of the organization with more of individual liberty; while the first, the militant type, implying compulsory co-operation under a more or less despotic military government with less of individual liberty, is decidedly nearer to the early predatory state. Mr. Spencer also shows how social metamorphoses take place. Especially interesting to note is the transformation or retrogression of the industrial type, partially developed during years of peace, into the militant type when war once more occurs.

Of all the illustrations which might be gathered from history, ancient and modern, as exhibiting this social transformation, Mr. Spencer considers that furnished by England in more recent years the most striking, because the industrial type here was further developed than anywhere else, owing in a great measure to the long era of peace which commenced in 1815. But the usurpation of power by Louis Napoleon in France caused a great change. England soon found herself involved in actual wars, one after the other. The threatening attitudes of neighboring nations alone