Page:(Commercial character) The Joseph Fisher lecture in commerce, delivered at the University of Adelaide (IA commercialcharac00jessrich).pdf/35

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31

Machiavelli is to be our model, and the national motto,

" The end justifies the means,"

then I ask iu my bewilderment, what may be our conception of that Deity who made man after his own image?


We have the making of a nation in our hands, a task concerning the lives and the fortunes of this generation and of generations to come, the achievement whereof, as we do well or ill, will bring blessings or curses on our heads. The tendency of those who are satisfied with things as they are, including such as have reached the grand climacteric and, favoured by fortune, ask for but an easy descent; and of those who pursue the golden ignis fatuus untiringly, remorselessly, to the end, is to delegate to others the management; of things they have neither the time, the inclination, or the energy to manage for themselves. What wonder, then, that the discontented accept the burden of Government; what wonder if the would-be representatives of those who want, suggest some new system, having for its crown that so-difficult-to-be-imagined condition, universal content. Kingsley's song says,

"Men must work while women must weep,"

and certes one-half of the dictum may be deemed axiomatic, for to labour must be the universal lot. Be it labour to support life, labour for individual gain, labour for the advantage of others—labour it must be. And our aim must be production, production allied to excellence, but, above all, production, under such conditions as will improve the lot of the lower stratum of society.