The Veto Power. By Edward C. Mason. Harvard Historical Monographs, No. 1. Edited by Albert B. Hart. Boston: Ginn & Co. Pp. 232. Price, $1.
The first number of what promises to be a valuable series of publications has been issued by Harvard University. It gives the history of presidential vetoes in the United States from 1789 to 1889. This record is introduced by an account of the origin in English and colonial precedent of that particular form of the veto power which is found in the United States. Different classes of vetoes are discussed in successive chapters, namely, those affecting the form of government, those affecting the distribution of the powers of government, and those affecting the exercise of these powers. A chapter is added on the constitutional points which have arisen concerning the operation of the veto power, and another on the development of this function during the completed century of our national history. Appendix A is a chronological list of all bills vetoed from April 6, 1789, to March 4, 1889, with dates and references to the journals of Congress containing the legislative histories of the bills. Five other appendixes contain similar lists and tables. The editor states that both the author and he have endeavored to make this work free from political bias, and that "the vetoes are condemned or approved upon what seem to us sound principles of constitutional law and political expediency, irrespective of the attitude of present parties."
International Journal of Ethics. Vol. I, No. 1; October, 1890. Issued quarterly. Philadelphia, 1602 Chestnut Street. Price, $2 yearly; single number, 50 cents.
We are confident that the world will profit from the founding of this magazine. It is designed to do work which must greatly aid the elevation of human character and the increase of human happiness. It is the successor of The Ethical Record, and it is more than this. The announcement states that the Journal will be devoted to the advancement of ethical knowledge and practice, and that it will not be the organ of any society or sect or of any particular set of opinions. The word International in its name is justified by the composition of its editorial committee, which consists of Felix Adler, Ph. D., New York; Stanton Coit, Ph. D., London; Prof. G. von Gizycki, Berlin; Prof. Fr. Jodl, Prague; J. S. Mackenzie, M. A., Manchester; J. H. Muirhead, M. A., London; and Prof. Josiah Royce, of Harvard University. The list of contributors already engaged has a still wider range. Seven body articles and a department of book reviews make up the contents of the first number. The opening article is on The Morality of Strife, by Prof. Henry Sidgwick, of Cambridge University, referring especially to wars. It has been said that the spread of altruism would bring wars between states to an end. Prof. Sidgwick maintains that little improvement would be secured until the predominance of good-will was complete; for, so long as any were wronged, those persons dominated by altruism would still be eager to fight, albeit in behalf of others and not for themselves. To the proposition that strife can generally be prevented by competent arbitration, Prof. Sidgwick objects that this "external" mode of solution can not be applied to all cases, and he thinks it inevitable that, "at least for a long time to come, every nation in the most important matters must to an important extent be judge in its own cause." Therefore "we must endeavor to be just judges." Prof. Felix Adler contributes an article on The Freedom of Ethical Fellowship, in which he states that it is the aim of the Ethical Societies "to unite men of diverse opinions and beliefs in the common endeavor to explore the field of duty," and "to embody the new insight in manners and institutions." Prof. Adler says further: "Ethics is both a science and an art. As a science its business is to explain the facts of the moral life. In order, therefore, to improve it as a science it is necessary, before all, to fix attention on the facts, to collect them, to bring them into view, especially the more recondite among them. It is necessary to effect in the treatment of the subject a revolution analogous to that which has taken place in the natural sciences, namely, instead of beginning with theories and descending to facts, to begin with the facts and to test theories by their fitness to account for the facts." The Popular Science Monthly has always held that