Page:Oliver Spence.djvu/31

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(2.) 'The International Goldworkers' Association of the City of Pompeii demand for Member of the Board of Public Works, Cuspis Pansa.'

(3.) 'Verna, the home-born, with her pupils, in all right, put Mrs. Capella to the front for a seat on the Board of Magistrates.'"

The workers failed then because the men of the sword were against them, and they have failed since for the same reason."

Mary: "But I have read, dear Oliver, that the workers in England enjoyed great prosperity, ease, and plenty during the fifteenth century Surely, that was not brought about by the sword?"

Oliver: "You are in error, my dear, Professor Thorold Rogers, and other historians clearly show that it was chiefly brought about by the temporary success of the partial "Revolt of the Peasants," under the leadership of Wat Tyler."

Mary: "It does seem sad that justice cannot be obtained without the sacrifice of human life."

Oliver: "It is sad enough, my dear, but true, and what is more, the higher the civilization the greater seems the need of political surgery. If a tree shows signs of disease, we lop off the infected branches to prevent the spread of the disease, in the same way, when society becomes corrupt, it is necessary to cut out that corruption in order to save society from complete rottenness, and ultimate disintegration. The history of mankind shows that the more highly civilized a society becomes, the greater is its corruption, and, consequently the greater its need of a surgical operation or judicious pruning."

Mary: "To change the subject, somewhat, Oliver. Do you not think that the old system of Parliamentary Government was in harmony with Democratic principles?"

Oliver: "No, my dear; Parliamentary Government was a huge farce. In the first place, it was not representative, partly because no man can represent another, he can only 'represent' himself, so that, if sent to Parliament with vague instructions to 'represent' his constituents, he simply managed matters in his own interest; and partly because of fraudulent practices at the elections, and the influence of the rich man over those who were employed by him; or who were under obligations to him; or who, strangely enough, admired and respected him, because of the wealth he had legally cheated them out of. In the second place, it being difficult to fix responsibility upon a whole Parliament, its members were almost invariably venal and corrupt and, they were animated by plutocratic class bias. In the third place, it is reasonable to assume that it is easer to pick out one or two good and great men in a nation than to discover a Parliament of such men. You and I, Mary, are entrusted with power for a period of three ears, and the eyes of the whole nation are upon us, we two, and we only, are held directly responsible by the nation, who could, if they so desired, depose