negating all authority, differ from a society governed by the laws "thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbor as thyself, " and affirming the authority of Christ? (1) If there is no real difference, what use in any negation?
But again: If Anarchy, as you advocate it, be the very highest ideal of Socialism, do you think it possible to make so great a transition as from the present condition of things to that ideal state, except by steps accomplished with more or less celerity? (2)
If not, why cannot all men who desire to change the present condition of things for a better one form parts of one great army, and advance as rapidly as possible towards the end? If part of the army halt when certain changes are effected, you are advanced with it so far, and part of your work is accomplished any vvay, and you have less to do. (3)
The practical question is: what shall we attack first with that amount and kind of force necessary to effect our purposes? The present system must be destroyed in detail, and a new one be supplied in detail. The job is too large to accomplish suddenly and at once.
O. P. Lewis.
Bridgeport, Conn., December 3, 1885.
(1) A society negating all authority would differ from a society affirming the authority of Christ very much as white differs from black. Self-government is incompatible with government by the law, "thou shalt love the Lord thy God," for the reason that this law implies the existence of God, and God and Man are enemies. God, to be God, must be a governing power. His government cannot be administered directly by the individual, for the individual, and through the individual: if it could, it would at once obliterate individuality altogether. Hence the government of God, if administered at all, must be administered through his professed vicegerents on earth, the dignitaries of Church and State. How this hierarchy differs from Anarchy it is needless to point out.
(3) Because the great majority of "the men whose hearts are filled with the "desire to change the present condition of things for a better one" are afflicted with an obscurity of mental vision which renders them incapable of distinguishing between advance and retrogression. Professing an aspiration for entire individual freedom, they aim to effect it by enlarging the sphere of government and restricting and restraining the individual through all sorts of new oppressions. No clear-sighted Anarchist can march with such an army. The farther he should go with it, the farther would he be from his goal, and, instead of having "less to do," he would have more to do and more to undo. Whenever Liberty hears of any demand for a real increase of freedom, it is prompt to encourage and
sustain it, no matter what its source. It marches with any