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throws light upon his character as a man state whose territory is thus invaded. and as a possible President.
This practical exposition of the Monroe It is now generally understood that doctrine will preserve Mr. Olney's name the dispute between England and Vene- in American history, even if no other act zuela had lasted for half a century, and of his shall be remembered. that various Secretaries of State for the The terms of his letter to Mr. BayUnited States had addressed the Eng- ard, for the information of Lord Salislish government on the subject, in one bury, have been criticised severely. It way and another, but always upon the is said that he might have put the matground that we had an interest in the ter more diplomatically, and that a rematter. That is, the intervention of the quest, instead of a peremptory demand, United States was based upon the Mon- would have done better. But it must be roe doctrine. Chiefly, this intervention remembered that the resources of diphad taken the form of repeated requests lomacy had been exhausted by former to Great Britain to submit the dispute to Secretaries of State without producing arbitration. These requests had always the slightest effect. The English are been refused, and meantime the boun- not, like the French (and perhaps like dary line, as the British Foreign Office ourselves), unduly sensitive about either understood it, was creeping further and giving or taking a hint. The elder Mr. further over the disputed territory. In Osborne was a typical Englishman, and the two years between 1885 and 1887 it there is no dispute about his peculiariadvanced so far as to include thirty-three ties. “When he gave what he called a thousand square miles which had not pre- hint,' ” his biographer relates, “ there viously been claimed by Great Britain. was no possibility for the most obtuse to Such was the situation when Mr. Olney mistake his meaning. He called kickbecame Secretary of State. He took ing a footman downstairs a hint to the up the matter with the promptness and latter to leave his service.” thoroughness which have always marked Mr. Olney, in his letter to Mr. Bayard, his career as a lawyer. It may be that gave the British government a strong he misunderstood and misapplied the hint, but a hint no stronger than was reMonroe doctrine ; some of his critics quired. The same critics who condemned have concluded that he did, and he has the terms of that letter also derided Mr. fallen in their estimation accordingly. Olney's proposed commission as being an But whether he was historically correct additional insult to Great Britain. Lord or not has ceased to be a matter of prac- Salisbury, they declared, would ignore tical importance. The American people, it. And yet, as these lines are written, with a few but notable exceptions, have news comes that the case of the British accepted and approved his understand government, prepared by the most coming of the doctrine. It is the Monroe petent man in England, and duly illusdoctrine now, whether it was so before trated by elaborate maps and diagrams, or not; and it is hardly conceivable that will be presented at Washington. This, it should ever be repudiated by any fu- of course, will not be done officially. The ture Secretaries of State or Presidents book will not be sent by Lord Salisbury, of the republic. That doctrine, so far as with his compliments ; but it will arrive ; it applies to the Venezuelan case, is this: it will be laid upon the table of the comno foreign power shall acquire new ter- mission, and there will be no doubt as ritory in South America, without the to its authenticity. If the commission, consent of the United States, either by constituted as it is, and having been furactual conquest, or by pushing forward nished with all the evidence at the disits boundary line against the will of the posal of the British government, should
decide against England, it is reasonably ecutive officer (except during the past certain that public opinion in England few years) is not important. The chief would not sustain Lord Salisbury in main- functions of a President are to select men taining his case by actual war against and to choose policies; and nobody has the United States. It seems, therefore, a better knowledge of men, or is more not premature to conclude that Mr. fitted to decide questions of policy, than Olney's diplomacy has succeeded ; and a naturally acute and well-educated law. it is hardly fair to attribute this success yer,
who has been trained by many years entirely to good luck and “pugnacity." of hard and responsible labor at the bar. He is a pugnacious man, no doubt; even Nor is Mr. Olney merely a lawyer, in the carriage of his head suggests that the sense that his interests are confined trait in his character. His head does to his office. He is not the kind of man not hang like the head of a dreamy man,
home late, with a green bag nor droop like the head of a scholar; it full of papers under his arm. Instead, is lowered, like the head of a bull. he leaves his office at a seasonable hour,
But this pugnacity is held in check and takes a long walk, or plays tennis, at by a very cool and logical intellect, by a which he is an adept. He has been seen lawyer's respect for the law, by the con- upon the baseball grounds; and best of science of a man who in his whole life all, he has a keen sense of humor. He is has never done a single thing for dis- not an orator, and as a writer he has no play. There was nothing rash, or reck- distinction of style; but the justness of less, or unpremeditated in the famous his ideas and the cultivation of his mind letter to Mr. Bayard ; and yet that let- are shown in the few occasional addresses ter had certain defects which correspond which he has been obliged to make since with a defect in Mr. Olney's character he became a member of the Cabinet. considered as a President. It showed As Attorney-General, it was his part to a want of tact: there were sentences in present to the court the resolutions of it which, without adding to the strength the bar upon the death of the late Mr. of the Secretary's position, were of such a Justice Blatchford, and in the course of nature as to wound the pride and pro- his remarks he said : voke the resentment of the person to
“It is not given to every man to be whom it was addressed. It must be ad- instinct with true genius, to exult in mitted that Mr. Olney is not a politic acknowledged intellectual superiority, to
He would not be successful in be chief among the chiefs of his chosen winning over disaffected persons, in har. calling. Such men are rare, and their monizing differences of opinion, in ar- examples as often provoke despair as ranging compromises, in opposing people excite to emulation. But to every man without offending them. As President, it is given to make the most of the he would probably make many ene- faculties that he has; to cultivate them mies.
with unflagging diligence; to make sure Mr. Olney's election would be, in one that they deteriorate neither from misuse respect, almost unique. He would be the nor disuse, but continue in ever-growing first President since Washington - with strength and efficiency, until the inevitathe single exception of Grant — who had ble access of years and infirmities bars not been a politician. He would take all further progress. By such means office absolutely untrammeled by previ- alone, without the aid of any transcenous alliances or associations; he would dent powers, it is astonishing to what be under obligations to nobody, and he heights men have climbed, what conwould have nobody to reward or to pun- quests they have made, and what lauish. His want of experience as an ex- rels they have won.”
No man spends three years at Wash- clearly the more his character becomes ington in an official position without known. Notwithstanding his dignity and some change in his character or habits, reserve, in spite of the conventional sur. either for better or for worse; and this roundings of his life and his forty years is especially true when the transition to of office work, the primitive man surWashington is made from the country vives in him. His long association with or from a provincial city like Boston. corporations has bred in him not a trace For a weak man the experience is apt of the timidity or selfishness of wealth. to be depraving; in some cases it has Though a man of education and refineproved disastrous. But Mr. Olney, in ment, he has never been touched by the course of his residence at Washing that academic frost under the blighting ton, has visibly brightened and expanded. influence of which the natural promptHe has the air of one who, having sud- ings of the heart are so often replaced denly been put in a new and difficult by the feeble conclusions of the intellect. place, yet finds the ground firm under Mr. Olney has retained what may be his feet, and himself the master of the called the natural impulses of human nasituation. We began by saying that he ture, the impulses of love and hatred, was of that type which is most admired the impulse of pity, and the impulse of by the typical Democrat, by the great pugnacity; and it is this naturalness and mass of Democratic voters, and we be- spontaneity which make his character atlieve that this will appear the more tractive as well as strong.
TEACHING OF ECONOMICS.
THERE are obvious differences be- ever they may be, should shape the tween the students in high schools or methods of teaching, in both its earlier academies, studying elementary econom
and its later stages. ics, and the older students engaged in These distinguishing features of our collegiate or university work, in both subject are not difficult to determine. maturity and general training. Hence, Economics deals not only with psychomethods of instruction should be fitting- logical, but also with physiological and ly adapted to their differing needs. If physical phenomena, , - that is, with I were to begin with the elementary and mental operations as well as with bodily lead up to the advanced work, assuming and physical facts ; and it aims at the that the two were quite alike, it might be discovery and exposition of causes and said of this treatment as of Bishop Berke- effects in regard to this subject-matter. ley's Siris (1744), that it began with Tar Preëminently concerned as it is with Water and ended with the Trinity. But every-day life, it demands careful investias theology and ethics may possibly un- gation into the accuracy of data, and a derlie the virtues of tar water as well as keen sense to note their relations to existthose of the Trinity, it is also possible that ing science. The field of economics is, we may find a common characteristic run- fortunately, quite definite, but it includes ning through both the elementary and differing orders of things. It does not the advanced work of instruction. At deal solely with physical nature, as do the least, it will be at once apparent that the natural sciences ; nor solely with ethical special peculiarities of the subject, what- or psychic data, as do the moral sciences.
It deals with conclusions taken from both primarily in using principles to explain these groups of sciences. Therefore its these facts, has been given the counterfield is somewhat peculiar, although its feit of an education, and not the real sim, common to other sciences, is the dis- thing. If he has been plunged at once covery and verification of a body of prin into figures and facts before he has reciples. This is a point of particular im- ceived a careful preliminary training in portance to us in discussing methods of principles, he is cheated by his instructeaching
tor into a false belief that he is being A science is a body of principles. educated, when he is not. Such a student While principles may abide, the phenom- is like a traveler in the dark, who has a ena in which they appear may change. lantern, but, when an emergency arises, For instance, the hot debates on the finds, to his chagrin, that it contains no inflation of the currency by greenbacks light. in 1874 may seem to the public quite dis- Therefore, whether we are speaking similar to the rancorous struggle on silver of the tar water or of the Trinity of of our day ; but the same fundamental economics, of teaching the elementary or monetary principles underlay both dis- the advanced work, it must be quite clear cussions. So, as in all science, the first that the nature of our subject prescribes and primary interest of economics is not a common point of view which the inin its subject matter, but in the validity structor should never forget. No matter and scope of its principles. One real- with what class of students he is dealing, izes instinctively that a mathematician, even though he may change his detailed for example, is less occupied with the processes of teaching to suit different whole mass of matter in the world hav- ages, he cannot overlook the fact that he ing length, breadth, and thickness, than is teaching a science. It may seem too with the principles which may apply to simple a matter to enforce this point of any and all of this matter. Similarly, view ; but it is, and has been, constanteconomics, when properly understood, ly overlooked. So with purpose aforeis seen to be a body of principles, and thought, let us emphasize here that it is not a description at any given moment the fundamental aim of the instructor in of mere concrete facts. Any student, economics to give power, and not mere therefore, who aims at more than narrow information ; to teach how to apply prinor superficial knowledge should be di- ciples to groups of complicated facts ; to rected not merely to collate the data in train students to explain, not merely to which the principles appear, but to com- collate; in short, to teach them to think, prehend the principles themselves. (It and not merely to know. should be here noted that I am not now discussing in any way the methods of No apology, however, need be offered discovering these principles, but only the for setting forth so plain a lesson of pedmethods of teaching existing principles.) agogics, because the study of economFrom this point of view, to teach a sci- ics in this country is relatively young, ence is to teach, first, how to understand and its teaching methods have not yet and assimilate this body of principles; had proper examination. In the beginand then, how, by constant practice, to ning, economic instructors adopted the apply them to every kind of its own sub- methods they had been familiar with in ject-matter. This furnishes us our bear- other fields. The other and older studies, ings in teaching economics. For the
For the with long-established methods of teacheconomic student, who has been taught ing, naturally handed down their habits merely the facts of a certain period or and traditions to their younger sister. subject, and who has not been trained But we are now breaking away from
these ties, in the process of a natural evo principle in view, more emphasis could lution into better things. An experience be laid upon clear exposition and illusof twenty years or more has brought tration of elementary principles. For about a better understanding of the na- the younger mind, more time could be ture of economics and of its characteris- wisely devoted to instructive and intertics, and consequently has given a distinct esting information upon questions of the impetus towards applying appropriate day. But it is dangerous to carry this methods of training economic students. too far. These questions of the day often ' In regard to teaching, economics is de- change their shape, and much of the inforclaring its independence.
mation-teaching soon becomes obsolete; The earlier teacher in economics, as and only that teaching remains which in history and law, generally spoke gave a grasp of governing principles perthrough a formal textbook. A great de- sisting in varying forms of actual life. pendence on a textbook, however, is a 'Consequently, elementary textbooks for clear indication of that lack of thorough high schools or academies might be diand broad training in the whole subject, vided into two parts: one devoted to an on the part of the instructor, which ne- exposition of the main and undisputed cessarily followed from the meagreness principles of economics, and the other to of the opportunities for economic train materials of practical interest to which ing of a few years ago. Or if the ear- these principles are to be applied. In lier instructor did not rely on a formal this way, the materials of the second part textbook, he not infrequently went to an- could be modified as the questions of the other extreme of relying entirely upon day come and go. lectures, after the German fashion. In In collegiate and university work, first introducing a student to economics, however, the instructor will find his stube he young or old, some textbook, as dents older and more mature, and can an exposition of principles, is a necessi- exact scientific methods with rigor and ty. That goes without saying; but the
In introductory work with matextbook, if properly used, should be ture students, the necessity of grasping regarded only as a means of grasping an abstract principle and working out its principles, and not as a record of dog- application in every-day life can be urged ma. The effect of a hard-and-fast set at once. Unexpected tests upon practical of lectures may not differ in practice problems made in writing drive this from that of a textbook ; the lectures ation home, and force habits of precision may be only the equivalent of a textbook and accuracy. But an increase of numof which the instructor is the author, bers in the class-room, which makes these
be subject to the same abuses. tests every few days impossible, will reThey are often more objectionable than sult in a less seasoned student for ada textbook, because not accessible to the vanced work. As soon as the introducstudent for study in accurate form, and tory work is passed, it is often assumed they often degenerate into directions as as a matter of course that lecturing is the to what the student should believe. only method of teaching : it has a more Without getting trained, in such cases, learned sound, and suggests the great the student takes the facts, the interpre- man whose every word is eagerly swaltation, and a bias from the lecturer. lowed by admiring students. Some of
Not so much stress, of course, can be the evils of this system, which is common put upon teaching how to think, in the in Germany and elsewhere to-day, are elementary as in the advanced work, but doubtless familiar to all of us. In prothis aim must still control the policy of portion as the lecturer is learned and the teacher. While keeping this general gifted with the art of lucid and attractive