Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 2, No. 8. May 31, 1939
Subterranean groans fitfully issue from our Auckland Freedom King. He reminds one rather of a nearly extinct volcano that rumbles in its stomach— emits a jet of dirty, black smoke, and then relaxes on its archaic foundations of rubble and dust. But perhaps it is not surprising for a minor eruption to occur occasionally in a city built on dormant, volcanic cones.
What is this "Glorious Freedom" that Professor Algie craves? Is it the freedom that demands of one—the waxing of tings—God and King—the hon-our of dashing across the grassy plain to stick a bayonet in the man in the swamp? "Our Leader" is peculiarly adept at flag waving, as are numerous of his satellites. Or is it the "stimulating freedom" of private enterprise— the still glorious opportunities of men and women to be free to do as they like? To work in the happy harmony of law, peace and order—order such as "Thou shalt not steal," etc., etc. (even though the belt is a little loose and the mind active with inactivity).
We's and Democracies.
The Professor is a man who undoubtedly believes what he says. To have freedom we must have no restrictions that are contrary to the concepts of true democracy. But the analysis of "we" and "democracy" is most important. "We" may imply the right of a few—as it has from the break-up of feudalism when it was coupled with the latter. And "democracy" may mean the practice of self-government by the passive will of a majority, who hand over the reins to the "we" minority.
What I think our dear professor objects to is a reversal of these traditional ideas, and an "active" government by a majority "we."
Thus, instead of the government legislating to protect and amplify the power of a minority class (of owners of the means of production) they are protecting the majority of producers. But is this right? Should dog eat dog or should several dogs eat one dog? The latter should prove the popular theory, and this is what our dear professor dislikes. Ethics and business will not mix for any great length of time—neither will Professor Algies and majorities.
However, we must be tolerant with him—stroke him—pat hint in the same way that we would stroke and pat a little puppy on whose foot we have trodden, patiently hoping that he will stop his yelping and become a nice, calm, grown-up dog!—M.L.B.