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it at once.
There are many advantages in leading in an inevitable movement, as has been several times shown in the history of Harvard, Johns Hopkins, and Cornell.
But for the college the advantage of the surrender of the junior and senior years would be less clear. To the well-equipped college the change would be unwelcome, and it would not be accepted. There are many students whose wants are adequately met by the college course of today. These do not expect to become engineers or professional men. Their purpose is personal culture; and if they find in the small college, as thousands now find and have found in the past, conditions adequate to their ends, they do well to remain in college for the degree of A. B., or longer for similar work, if conditions are favorable. If the small college wishes to maintain the continuity of its alumni roll, it has only to grant two years leave of absence to the members of its junior class, enabling them to attend the university for two years, to be certified back for graduation at home; these students thus, if desirable, receiving at once the degree of the college and the bachelor's degree of the university. But the granting of the bachelor's degree of America or of England is not really a university function.
In this case the institutions worthy of permanent place in our system of higher education will be these: the university; the college; the junior college, with its equivalent, the supplemental high school. Each of these for a time may duplicate the work of another; but the need of specialization with growth will tend finally to give the university a definite stamp and character of its own, and it is just as well to have a variety of intermediate schools or feeders leading up to it.
The general aim and purpose of the real university everywhere must be the same, and it is for us to follow the best models possible in extricating ourselves from the present confusion.
In Germany, at present, the local high school or gymnasium leads directly to the university. It carries the student through about two years more work than is required in our American high schools. There is a proposal in Germany at present to establish the college between the gymnasium and the university by cutting off the last three or four years of the gymnasium for that purpose. It is also suggested that these colleges be made co-educational. In the interest of these propositions a commission of German professors has lately visited the United States. If this should be carried into
effect, the conditions in higher education would be very similar in the two countries. In all which concerns universities Germany, the home of the university, offers us much better models than England on the one hand or Latin Europe on the other. University building, in any event, and in any country, must have much to learn from the experience and the success of Germany.
Let us imagine a German university with two thousand students and three hundred professors. Let us suppose that as many more students from the last two years of the gymnasium were added to this number, with an equal number of teachers drawn from the same source, all in the same building, under the same discipline. It will be at once seen that Leipzig as we know it, the German university as we know it, would be at once rendered impossible. But exactly this condition holds today in Harvard, in Cornell, in Wisconsin, in Michigan, in California. To escape from it, to take up its own special function, and to leave the college to develope its own, is the next duty of the American university.
THE ECONOMICS OF SPENDING
LUCY M. SALMON
A distinguished clergyman of New York City was once asked how he was able to accomplish the work of half a dozen men.
He replied that the secret lay in his violation of all the infallible precepts he had been taught as a boy—that he never did anything today that he could put off until tomorrow; that he never did anything himself that he could get anyone else to do; and that he did a great many things that were worth doing, but few of them as well as he could do them
If in one of the most conservative institutions in the world there is a recognition of the necessity of deviating from long established principles of action in the presence of new conditions of life, the question may well be raised whether these new conditions of life do not also necessitate changes in other fields that have likewise been hitherto ruled by the maxim and the proverb. It is a common-place to refer to the economic changes of the past one hundred fifty years; yet the economic conditions of a period long antedating these changes are reflected in proverbs that carry with them the weight of law and gospel, and we are governed in our actions by rules developed under these previous economic conditions, rather than by those developed from the present. It may be said in explanation of this anomalous condition that economic conditions have changed so rapidly that they have not had time to become reflected in current sayings. It must be said, moreover, that the rapidity of the changes has also prevented the leaders of economic thought from deducing from the observation of these conditions laws for our guidance in every day affairs. In default, therefore, of new maxims reflecting new economic conditions and of new laws enunciated by economists, the question must be asked: What are the old adages that govern us today in our private and public expenditures?
A considerable number of the principles that guide our expenditures today apparently had their origin under conditions when both men and women produced and neither spent. “A penny saved is twopence earned," "a farthing saved is twice earned," "a penny saved is a penny got,” reflected an age when money was scarce and labor cheap—when the chief domestic virtue was economy, and economy was interpreted as meaning frugality in the use of money. This interpretation has been projected into the present and is responsible for varying, even contradictory, current opinions. One of these is that economy consists in not spending at all; or, if it is necessary to spend, in buying the cheapest article in the market; or in buying the most expensive article, since "it is always economy to buy the best." These maxims we feel justify a half day each week at bargain sales, porterhouse steak on a $60 a month income, and the search for stores that give trading stamps.
But the concrete application of the "penny saved, penny earned” principle may prove expensive. When all stockings were knit by hand, it may have been wise economy to spend time and effort in mending them. When three pairs of substantial machine-made hose are sold for a dollar, the conditions of production have changed; yet we still spend hours in mending them “to wear just once more. Who will compute the ultimate cost of a pair of fifty cent hose that have been conscientiously mended for ten weeks by a woman whose earning capacity ought to be fifty cents an hour?
The housekeeper may buy beets at five cents a bunch rather than
peas at twenty-five cents a peck, and consider herself economical. But the beets may require the use of the gas range for two hours, while the peas may demand but twenty minutes. She may congratulate herself on getting eggs two cents a dozen cheaper up-town than they are sold for around the corner, but she may spend ten cents in carfare and fifteen minutes in time in availing herself of the nominally low price. Milk may be dear at five cents a quart and cheap at fifteen when poor milk means doctor's bills and pure milk saves the lives of babies. We may lower our gas bills and achieve mental depression and impaired eyesight, while ten dollars a year added to our gas bills may mean cheerfulness of spirit and the postponement of glasses. A fifty dollar dress may be injured in saving a fifty cent cab fare; though the cab may in turn become a habit, the habit may result in insufficient exercise, and this end in ill health with all its attendant expenses.
The same considerations govern our public expenditures. A political party appeals to the voters on the ground that it has given or that it will give "an economical administration,.” This always means that it will attempt to reduce the taxes and to spend little money. Yet spending little may mean great extravagance, and the reduction of the tax rate may result in waste. The reduction of salaries may mean the loss of efficient teachers. The employment of a cheap librarian may make necessary the employment of a second, and the two together may be unequal to the work of a trained librarian to whom a high salary is paid. Boards of education and library trustees are constantly allowing efficient, welleducated, well-trained teachers and librarians to give up their positions because of inadequate salaries, and filling the places left vacant with those who cheapen the professions by accepting a physical but not a mental living wage.
A board of education recently congratulated itself on its wise economy in dismissing a young man whom it had been employing at a salary of $1300, and engaging in his place a young woman at $800. But the young man was a trained teacher and the young woman was a raw recruit. The young woman congratulated herself on receiving the appointment because she could live at home and her salary was clear gain. But the parents of the young woman thus became, in proportion to their income, the heaviest taxpayers in the community, since they contributed to the education fund the living expenses of their daughter, the difference between $1300 and $800.
These illustrations suggest the infinite variety of problems arising from the attempt to apply at their face value proverbs arising under totally different economic conditions. Where it was once economy to save it may now be economy to spend, and we must agree with a recent writer who says: “It is found that no extravagance is so wasteful as a skinflint economy.''l
An economic condition where both men and women produced but neither spent has been followed by one when men have become the producers and women the spenders.
Increase in spending and in the number who spend involves a corresponding increase in selling and in the number who sell. By leaps and bounds, the retail trade has everywhere increased, and in the main it presents the appearance of a progressive campaign inaugurated by the merchant. The one desire of the shop-keeper is to sell, and he wishes to sell to every person. But every person
John Graham Brooks, The Social Unrest. P. 249.