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THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

—consequently it cannot have any part in producing a tide at one side of the earth merely. This must be ruled out.

Let us take up the last item of the three. C (Fig. 2) is the centre of gravity between the moon and the earth, about 3,000 miles from the earth's centre, and 1,000 from the surface. Now, the centrifugal force is always proportional to the distance from the centre of motion, other things being equal (see any work on mechanics). Then the force at D is seven times as great as the force at A, for it is seven times as far from C. Therefore the tide at D will be seven times as high as that at A. Do your New York tides play such tricks?

It is also easy to show that the first item of the three has nothing to do with the tides. So in that sentence there are three bald-faced absurdities; and in fact there are about as many such as there are sentences in the whole article. A hundred pages of manuscript are not sufficient to show them all up.

Take the next two sentences following the preceding, viz.: "The direction of these three forces is in the same line. The motion of this part of her surface, which is in this line of direction, is therefore the most rapid; consequently the centrifugal force felt here is also the greatest."

Scan this closely, and you will find what the logicians call a vicious circle in the reasoning.R. W. McFarland,

Professor of Mathematics, etc., Ohio
Agricultural and Mechanical College.
Columbus, Ohio, September 12, 1877.
 

 

THE PRESENT STAGNATION OF TRADE.

To the Editor of the Popular Science Monthly.

The discussion of the present economical problem, the depression of profits and wages, which the article of Prof. Bonamy Price ("One per Cent,") initiated, ought to be continued, and facts and opinions ought freely to be contributed toward a full understanding of the subject.

Prof. Price writes from the money-centre, and reflects the state of enlightened opinion as influenced by his surroundings. The money accumulated there represents savings, and he very naturally and very truly finds fault with our extravagance.

Next comes Mr. Bunce, in the July number ("Over-Consumption or Over-Production?"), giving the views as held in a manufacturing centre; he admits over-production and advises restriction.

This, the distributive (or trade) centre, New York, will not submit to; and Mr. Leland, in the August number, exposes the fallacy of some of Mr. Bunce's reasoning. Without wishing to imply that these writers did not intend to present the question in its total aspect, yet they are viewing it through the glass of their surroundings; and, if I now add the opinion which is held in an agricultural region, the next writer will include this and make his exposition more comprehensive.

We in the agricultural districts deny that there is over-production in our line, or stagnation of trade in our articles. The facts are, that with three very good harvests and several average ones previously, we have not produced more than has been consumed. At the end of June, when the present abundant wheat-harvest was begun, there was not old wheat sufficient for a month's home supply in the Western granary. The new wheat was hurried from the threshing-machine to the mill and ground immediately, to fill the regular orders for the Boston, New York, and Philadelphia markets. Evidently, there has been no over-production in wheat or in corn. We have readily sold all our beef-cattle, our sheep and swine, our wool, fruit, and dairy products. The production of all these has met the demand, and we have realized fair prices.

And, as a natural consequence, there has been no stagnation nor depression in our trade. Our farmers and small town and village mechanics, and our small retail stores, have had all the necessaries of life in abundance, and not a few of the comforts. Mortgages have been lifted, improvements have been made, surplus cash is in all our savings-banks at four per cent, or less interest to the depositors. Our trade centres, doing the honest business of first-hand traffic, are prospering.

All through our country, farms and fisheries have not produced more grain, meat, or wool, than has been consumed from one harvest to another. But we have produced more cotton than can be worn out from one year to another. Our mines have yielded more iron, in many places more coal, than is wanted; much less iron is now required for trades-tools, machinery, and railroading, than at that not far-distant period when a great deal was consumed in building new roads and erecting new machinery where there had been none before. Mines are bringing up more silver than can be usefully employed; hence it is being hoarded, and its price must sink.

The cotton and the iron are forced upon the converting trades, in which so many mill-hands and factory-operatives are employed. The raw material in excess becomes cheaper. The converted products, the articles manufactured for consumption, are in excess, and, forcing themselves upon the market, reduce prices, as well their own as the price of the labor that produced and distributed them. And, as a last consequence, these products are glutting the shelves of the merchants' warerooms, diminishing the profits of the carrier and