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be found in any good general text-book on Economics. On the financial
situation, see articles on "Lombard Street in War" and "The War and
Financial Exhaustion" (_Round Table,_ September and December 1914); "War
and the Financial System, August 1914," by J.M. Keynes (_Economic Journal_,
September 1914); and articles in the _New Statesman_ on "Why a Moratorium?"
(August 15,1914), and "The Restoration of the Remittance Market" (August
29, 1914). Norman Angell's _The Great Illusion_ (2s. 6d.) should be
consulted for an examination of the relations between war and trade.
The most accessible book dealing with the foreign trade of the European
countries is the _Statesman's Year-Book_, published annually at 10s. 6d.
The chapters reprinted from the _Encyclopaedia Britannica_ are also useful.
A valuable article on "The Economic Relations of the British and German
Empires," by E. Crammond, appeared in the _Journal of the Royal Statistical
Society_, July 1914. The same writer published an article on "The Economic
Aspects of the War" in _The Quarterly Review_ for October 1914 (6s.). A
grasp of the economic development of Germany may be obtained from W.H.
Dawson's _Evolution of Modern Germany_ (5s.) and the same writer's
_Industrial Germany_ (Nation's Library, 1s.). Mr. F.W. Taylor's _Scientific
Management_ (5s.) and Miss J. Goldmark's _Fatigue and Efficiency_ (8s.)
explain scientific management. A short account is also given in Layton's
_Capital and Labour_ (Nation's Library, 1s.).

The course of unemployment in this country may be traced from the returns
published each month in the _Board of Trade Labour Gazette_ (monthly, 1d.).
Proposals for dealing with possible and existing distress during the war
are to be found in a pamphlet on _The War and the Workers,_ by Sidney Webb
(Fabian Society, 1d.). For the possible use of trade unions as a channel
for the distribution of public assistance, see an article in _The Nation_
for September 5, 1914, and Mr. G.D.H. Cole's article on "How to help the
Cotton Operative" in _The Nation_ for November 7, 1914. The same paper
published two suggestive articles on "Relief or Maintenance?" (September 19
and October 3). The situation which has arisen in the woollen and worsted
industries owing to the large demand for cloth for the troops is dealt with
in an article on "The Government and Khaki," by Arthur Greenwood in _The
Nation_ for November 28, 1914. Reference may be made to the official White
Paper on Distress; other official documents of note are the following:

"Separation allowances to the Wives and Children of Seamen,
Marines, and Reservists." Cd. 7619. 1914. 1/2d.
"Increased Rates of Separation Allowance for the Wives and
Children of Soldiers." Cd. 7255. 1914. 1/2d.
"Return of Papers relating to the Assistance rendered by the
Treasury to Banks and Discount Houses since the Outbreak of
War on August 4, 1914, and to the Questions of the Advisability
of continuing or ending the Moratorium and of the Nature of
the Banking Facilities now available." H.C. 457 of 1914. 1d.
"Report, dated April 30, 1914, of a Sub-Committee of the Committee
of Imperial Defence on the Insurance of British Shipping in
Time of War, to devise a scheme to ensure that, in case of war,
British Steamships should not be generally laid up, and that
Oversea Commerce should not be interrupted by reason of
inability to cover war risks of Ships and Cargoes by Insurance,
and which would also secure that the insurance rates should not
be so high as to cause an excessive rise in prices." Cd. 7560.
1914. 2 1/2d.

The Government has issued a _Manual of Emergency Legislation_ (3s.
6d.) containing the statutes, proclamations, orders in council, rules,
regulations, and notifications used in consequence of the war; the
appendices contain other documents (the Declarations of Paris and of
London, the Hague Convention, etc.).



CHAPTER IX

GERMAN CULTURE AND THE BRITISH COMMONWEALTH

"Peace cannot become a law of human society, except by passing through the
struggle which will ground life and association on foundations of justice
and liberty, on the wreck of every power which exists not for a principle
but for a dynastic interest." - MAZZINI in 1867.

"The greatest triumph of our time, a triumph in a region loftier than that
of electricity or steam, will be the enthronement of this idea of Public
Right as the governing idea of European policy; as the common and precious
inheritance of all lands, but superior to the passing opinion of any. The
foremost among the nations will be that one which, by its conduct, shall
gradually engender in the minds of the others a fixed belief that it is
just." - GLADSTONE.


§1. _The Two Issues._ - The War of 1914 is not simply a war between the
Dual Alliance and the Triple Entente: it is, for Great Britain and
Germany especially, a war of ideas - a conflict between two different and
irreconcilable conceptions of government, society, and progress. An attempt
will be made in this chapter to make clear what these conceptions are, and
to discuss the issue between them as impartially as possible, from the
point of view, not of either of the combatant Powers, but of human
civilisation as a whole.

There are really two great controversies being fought out between Great
Britain and Germany: one about the ends of national policy, and another
about the means to be adopted towards those or any other ends. The latter
is the issue raised by the German Chancellor's plea - not so unfamiliar
on the lips of our own countrymen as we are now tempted to believe - that
"Necessity knows no law." It is the issue of Law and "scraps of paper"
against Force, against what some apologists have called "the Philosophy of
Violence," but which, in its latest form, the French Ambassador has more
aptly christened "the Pedantry of Barbarism." That issue has lately been
brought home, in its full reality, to the British public from the course of
events in Belgium and elsewhere, and need not here be elaborated. Further
words would be wasted. A Power which recognises no obligation but force,
and no law but the sword, which marks the path of its advance by organised
terrorism and devastation, is the public enemy of the civilised world.

But it is a remarkable and significant fact that the policy in which this
ruthless theory is embodied commands the enthusiastic and united support of
the German nation. How can this be explained?

It must be remembered in the first place that the German public does
not see the facts of the situation as we do. On the question of Belgian
neutrality and the events which precipitated the British ultimatum, what
we know to be a false version of the facts is current in Germany, as is
evident from the published statements of the leaders of German thought and
opinion, and it may be many years before its currency is displaced.

This difficulty should serve to remind us how defective the machinery of
civilisation still is. One of the chief functions of law is, not merely to
settle disputes and to enforce its decisions, but to ascertain the true
facts on which alone a settlement can be based. The fact that no tribunal
exists for ascertaining the true facts in disputes between sovereign
governments shows how far mankind still is from an established "rule of
law" in international affairs. Not only is the Hague powerless to give and,
still more, to enforce its decision on the questions at issue between the
European Powers. It has not even the machinery for ascertaining the facts
of the case and bringing them to the notice of neutral governments and
peoples in the name of civilisation as a whole.

But apart from divergent beliefs as to the facts, it is remarkable that
thinking Germany should be in sympathy with the spirit and tone of German
policy, which led, as it appears to us, by an inexorable logic to the
violation of Belgian neutrality and the collision with Great Britain.

But the fact, we are told, admits of easy explanation. Thinking Germany has
fallen a victim to the teachings of Treitschke and Nietzsche - Treitschke
with his Macchiavellian doctrine that "Power is the end-all and be-all of a
State," Nietzsche with his contempt for pity and the gentler virtues, his
admiration for "valour," and his disdain for Christianity.

This explanation is too simple to fit the facts. It may satisfy those who
know no more of Treitschke's brilliant and careful work than the extracts
culled from his occasional writings by General von Bernhardi and the late
Professor Cramb. It may gratify those who, with so many young German
students, forget that Nietzsche, like many other prophets, wrote in
allegory, and that when he spoke of valour he was thinking, not of "shining
armour," but of spiritual conflicts. But careful enquirers, who would
disdain to condemn Macaulay on passages selected by undiscriminating
admirers from his _Essays_, or Carlyle for his frank admiration of Thor
and Odin and the virtues of Valhalla, will ask for a more satisfying
explanation. Even if all that were said about Treitschke and Nietzsche were
true, it would still remain an unsolved question why they and their ideas
should have taken intellectual Germany by storm. But it is not true. What
is true, and what is far more serious, both for Great Britain and for
Europe, is that men like Harnack, Eucken, and Wilamowitz, who would
repudiate all intellectual kinship with Macchiavelli and Nietzsche - men who
are leaders of European thought, and with whom and whose ideas we shall
have to go on living in Europe - publicly support and encourage the policy
and standpoint of a Government which, according to British ideas, has
acted with criminal wickedness and folly, and so totally misunderstood
the conduct and attitude of Great Britain as honestly to regard us as
hypocritically treacherous to the highest interests of civilisation.

That is the real problem; and it is a far more complex and difficult one
than if we had to do with a people which had consciously abandoned the
Christian virtues or consciously embarked on a conspiracy against Belgium
or Great Britain. The utter failure of even the most eminent Germans to
grasp British politics, British institutions, and the British point of
view points to a fundamental misunderstanding, a fundamental divergence
of outlook, between the political ideals of the two countries. It is the
conflict between these ideals which forms the second great issue between
Germany and Great Britain; and on its outcome depends the future of human
civilisation.


§2. _Culture_. - What is the German ideal? What do German thinkers regard
as Germany's contribution to human progress? The answer comes back with a
monotonous reiteration which has already sickened us of the word. It is
_Kultur_, or, as we translate it, culture. Germany's contribution to
progress consists in the spread of her culture.

_Kultur_ is a difficult word to interpret. It means "culture" and a
great deal more besides. Its primary meaning, like that of "culture," is
intellectual and aesthetic: when a German speaks of "Kultur" he is thinking
of such things as language, literature, philosophy, education, art,
science, and the like. Children in German schools are taught a subject
called _Kulturgeschichte_ (culture-history), and under that heading they
are told about German literature, German philosophy and religion, German
painting, German music and so on.

So far, the English and the German uses of the word roughly correspond. We
should probably be surprised if we heard it said that Shakespeare had made
a contribution to English "culture": but, on consideration, we should admit
that he had, though we should not have chosen that way of speaking about
him. But there is a further meaning in the word _Kultur_, which explains
why it is so often on German lips. It means, not only the product of the
intellect or imagination, but the product of the disciplined intellect and
the disciplined imagination. _Kultur_ has in it an element of order, of
organisation, of civilisation. That is why the Germans regard the study of
the "culture" of a country as part of the study of its history. English
school children are beginning to be taught social and industrial history in
addition to the kings and queens and battles and constitutions which used
to form the staple of history lessons. They are being taught, that is, to
see the history of their country, and of its civilisation, in the light
of the life and livelihood of its common people. The German outlook is
different. They look at their history in the light of the achievements of
its great minds, which are regarded as being at once the proof and the
justification of its civilisation. To the question, "What right have you to
call yourselves a civilised country?" an Englishman would reply, "Look at
the sort of people we are, and at the things we have done," and would point
perhaps to the extracts from the letters of private soldiers printed in the
newspapers, or to the story of the growth of the British Empire; a German
would reply (as Germans are indeed replying now), "Look at our achievements
in scholarship and science, at our universities, at our systems of
education, at our literature, our music, and our painting; at our great men
of thought and imagination: at Luther, Dürer, Goethe, Beethoven, Kant."

_Kultur_ then means more than "culture": it means _culture considered as
the most important element in civilisation._ It implies the disciplined
education which alone, in the German view, makes the difference between
the savage and the civilised man. It implies the heritage of intellectual
possessions which, thanks to ordered institutions, a nation is able to hand
down from generation to generation.

We are now beginning to see where the British and German attitudes towards
society and civilisation diverge. Broadly, we may say that the first
difference is that Germany thinks of civilisation in terms of intellect
while we think of it in terms of character. Germany asks, "What do you
know?" "What have you learnt?" and regards our prisoners as uncivilised
because they cannot speak German, and Great Britain as a traitor to
civilisation because she is allied with Russia, a people of ignorant
peasants. We ask, "What have you done?" "What can you do?" and tend
to undervalue the importance of systematic knowledge and intellectual
application.

But we have found no reason as yet for a conflict of ideals. Many English
writers, such as Matthew Arnold, have emphasised the importance of culture
as against character; yet Matthew Arnold's views were widely different from
those of the German professors of to-day. If their sense of the importance
of culture stopped short at this point, we should have much to learn from
Germany, as indeed we have, and no reason to oppose her. What is there then
in the German admiration for culture which involves her in a conflict with
British ideals?


§3. _Culture as a State Product._ - The conflict arises out of the alliance
between German culture and the German Government. What British public
opinion resents, in the German attitude, is not culture in itself, about
which it is little concerned, but what we feel to be its unnatural
alliance with military power. It seems to us wicked and hypocritical for a
government which proclaims the doctrine of the "mailed fist" and, like the
ancient Spartans, glories in the perfecting of the machinery of war, to be
at the same time protesting its devotion to culture, and posing as a patron
of the peaceful arts. It is the Kaiser's speeches and the behaviour of the
German Government which have put all of us out of heart with German talk
about culture.

This brings us to a fundamental point of difference between the two
peoples. The close association between culture and militarism, between the
best minds of the nation and the mind of the Government, does not seem
unnatural to a modern German at all. On the contrary, it seems the most
natural thing in the world. It is the bedrock of the German system of
national education. Culture to a German is not only a national possession;
it is also, to a degree difficult for us to appreciate, a State product.
It is a national possession deliberately handed on by the State from
generation to generation, hall-marked and guaranteed, as it were, for the
use of its citizens. When we use the word "culture" we speak of it as an
attribute of individual men and women. Germans, on the other hand, think
of it as belonging to nations as a whole, in virtue of their system of
national education. That is why they are so sure that all Germans possess
culture. They have all had it at school. And it is all the same brand of
culture, because no other is taught. It is the culture with which the
Government wishes its citizens to be equipped. That is why all Germans
tend, not only to know the same facts (and a great many facts too), but
to have a similar outlook on life and similar opinions about Goethe,
Shakespeare and the German Navy. Culture, like military service, is a part
of the State machinery.

Here we come upon the connecting link between culture and militarism. Both
are parts of the great German system of State education. "Side by side with
the influences of German education," wrote Dr. Sadler in 1901,[1] "are
to be traced the influences of German military service. The two sets
of influence interact on one another and intermingle. German education
impregnates the German army with science. The German army predisposes
German education to ideas of organisation and discipline. Military and
educational discipline go hand in hand.... Both are preserved and fortified
by law and custom, and by administrative arrangements skilfully devised
to attain that end. But behind all the forms of organisation (which would
quickly crumble away unless upheld by and expressing some spiritual force),
behind both military and educational discipline, lies the fundamental
principle adopted by Scharnhorst's Committee on Military organisation in
Prussia in 1807: 'All the inhabitants of the State are its defenders by
birth.'"

[Footnote 1: _Board of Education Special Reports,_ vol. ix. p. 43.]

At last we have reached the root of the matter. It is not German culture
which is the source and centre of the ideas to which Great Britain is
opposed: nor yet is it German militarism. Our real opponent is the system
of training and education, out of which both German culture and German
militarism spring. It is the organisation of German public life, and the
"spiritual force" of which that organisation is the outward and visible
expression.


§4. _German and British Ideals of Education._ - Let us look at the German
ideal more closely, for it is worthy of careful study. It is perhaps best
expressed in words written in 1830 by Coleridge, who, like other well-known
Englishmen of his day (and our own) was much under the influence of German
ideas. Coleridge, in words quoted by Dr. Sadler, defines the purpose of
national education as "to form and train up the people of the country to
obedient, free, useful, and organisable subjects, citizens and patriots,
living to the benefit of the State and prepared to die in its defence." In
accordance with this conception Prussia was the first of the larger States
in Europe to adopt a universal compulsory system of State education, and
the first also to establish a universal system of military service for its
young men. The rest of Europe perforce followed suit. Nearly every State in
Europe has or professes to have a universal system of education, and every
State except England has a system of universal military service. The Europe
of schools and camps which we have known during the last half century is
the most striking of all the victories of German "culture."

Discipline, efficiency, duty, obedience, public service; these are
qualities that excite admiration everywhere - in the classroom, in the camp,
and in the wider field of life. There is something almost monumentally
impressive to the outsider in the German alliance of School and Army in the
service of the State. Since the days of Sparta and Rome, there has been no
such wonderful governmental disciplinary machine. It is not surprising that
"German organisation" and "German methods" should have stimulated interest
and emulation throughout the civilised world. Discipline seems to many to
be just the one quality of which our drifting world is in need. "If this
war had been postponed a hundred or even fifty years," writes a philosophic
English observer in a private letter, "Prussia would have become our Rome,
worshipping Shakespeare and Byron as Pompey or Tiberius worshipped Greek
literature, and disciplining us. Hasn't it ever struck you what a close
parallel there is between Germany and Rome?" (Here follows a list of
bad qualities which is better omitted.) ... "The good side of it is the
discipline; and the modern world, not having any power external to itself
which it acknowledges, and no men (in masses) having yet succeeded in being
a law to themselves, needs discipline above everything. I don't see where
you will get it under these conditions unless you find some one with an
abstract love of discipline for itself. And where will you find him except
in Prussia? After all, it is a testimony to her that, unlovely as she is,
she gives the law to Germany, and that the South German, though he dislikes
her, accepts the law as good for him." And to show that he appreciates the
full consequences of his words he adds: "If I had to live under Ramsay
MacDonald (provided that he acted as he talks), or under Lieutenant von
Förstner" (the hero of Zabern), "odious as the latter is, for my soul's
good I would choose him: for I think that in the end, I should be less
likely to be irretrievably ruined."

Here is the Prussian point of view, expressed by a thoughtful Englishman
with a wide experience of education, and a deep concern for the moral
welfare of the nation. What have we, on the British side, to set up against
his arguments?

In the first place we must draw attention to the writer's candour in
admitting that a nation cannot adopt Prussianism piecemeal. It must take
it as a whole, its lieutenants included, or not at all. Lieutenant von
Förstner is as typical a product of the Prussian system as the London
policeman is of our own; and if we adopt Prussian or Spartan methods,
we must run the risk of being ruled by him. "No other nation," says Dr.
Sadler, "by imitating a little bit of German organisation can hope thus
to achieve a true reproduction of the spirit of German institutions. The
fabric of its organisation practically forms one whole. That is its merit
and its danger. It must be taken all in all or else left unimitated. And
it is not a mere matter of external organisation.... National institutions
must grow out of the needs and character (and not least out of the
weakness) of the nation which possesses them."

But, taking the system as a whole, there are, it seems to me, three great
flaws in it - flaws so serious and vital as to make the word "education" as
applied to it almost a misnomer. The Prussian system is unsatisfactory,
firstly, because it confuses external discipline with self-control;
secondly, because it confuses regimentation with corporate spirit; thirdly,
because it conceives the nation's duty in terms of "culture" rather than of
character.

Let us take these three points in detail.

The first object of national education is - not anything national at all,
but simply education. It is the training of individual young people. It is
the gradual leading-out (e-ducation), unfolding, expanding, of their
mental and bodily powers, the helping of them to become, not soldiers, or
missionaries of culture, or pioneers of Empire, or even British citizens,
but simply human personalities. "The purpose of the Public Elementary
School," say the opening words of our English code, "is to form and
strengthen the character and to develop the intelligence of the children
entrusted to it." In the performance of this task external discipline is no
doubt necessary. Obedience and consideration for others are not learnt in
a day. But the object of external discipline is to form habits of
self-control which will enable their possessor to become an independent and
self-respecting human being - and incidentally, a good citizen. "If I had
to _live under_ Ramsay MacDonald, or the Prussian Lieutenant," says our
writer, "I would choose the latter, for my soul's good." But our British
system of education does not proceed on the assumption that its pupils



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