Page:Studies in socialism 1906.djvu/16

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X Translator's Introduction

doing. Its effect is very similar to that of a mov- ing sidewalk. Nine tenths of the human race walk on their own feet and go fast or slow accord- ing to the strength they have and the effort they put forth. These are the manual workers, arti- sans, and propertyless professional men, whose reward is indeed proportioned to their industry, skill, and thrift. But one tenth are able to jump on to the moving sidewalk, or are deposited there by the effort or favour of others; they get a share of wealth-producing wealth and are carried along by it. They may keep on walking or not just as they choose; if they do they will go a bit faster, if they stand still they will go forward just the same. Some of them may manage to jump on to the faster moving inner circles; these are the men who have manipulated their share of wealth- producing wealth with most success. And some men have never had to walk on the solid resisting earth at all. They cannot imagine what it would be like not to have the moving sidewalk to help them along. They may have neither skill nor ability, but their fathers had, and there they are.

So our philosopher can amend his original an- swer thus: " Wealth is a reward of industry and a reward of thrift, but much more than these, a reward for the possession of wealth."

He will recognise that industry and thrift alone are not enough to give a man a good place on the moving sidewalk. Another quality altogether, a

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