Page:The Green Bag (1889–1914), Volume 25.pdf/116

This page needs to be proofread.

The Legal World Arthur Brisbane, Professor Henry Jones Ford, and several newspaper editors. At the meetings of the American Eco nomic Association Professor Irving Fisher presented his well-known plan for the standardization of the gold dollar, and this subject and many others, such as that of banking reform, were discussed. There was a debate on "Gov ernmental Price Regulation," Professor J. M. Clark of Amherst College and Pro fessor F. W. Taussig of Harvard holding its future to be uncertain, but Professor Chester W. Wright of the University of Chicago and Professor John H. Gray of the University of Minnesota urging its benefits. Professor David I. Kinley of the University of Illinois was elected president for the coming year. The newest social movements were strongly reflected in a paper read by Professor Albion W. Small of the Uni versity of Chicago before the Ameri can Sociological Society, the meetings of which he opened as its president. Taking for his topic "The Present Out look of Social Science," he said in part: "Most of the recent demands by various types of agitators for economic reform have spent their strength in challenging the justice of our distribu tive system, and in proposing substi tutes. Beneath these relatively superfi cial matters, however, is the antecedent question, which has scarcely been for mulated, namely: Whether capitalism, as we know it, is compatible with social solvency. "How far can our practice of acceler ated capitalization go before it will overtake the capacity of production operations to carry the increasing bur den? The question challenges not econ omists alone. Our present knowledge that the latifundia system undermined the strength of Rome came through the combined work of our whole apparatus of social science. The most vital task


of our period is confirmation or removal of the suspicion that the capitalism of our era is a social fallacy as patent and as fatal as the Roman latifundia. "The task will not be finished without the co-operation of all our social sciences from the historical, functional, moral and instrumental standpoints." Before the same body, President Walter F. Willcox of the American Statis tical Association urged the need of social statistics to enable courts to dis pose correctly of the questions of fact arising in controversies involving labor, occupational, and health conditions. Professor Pound read a paper at these meetings also, on "Legislation as a Social Function," and E. R. James of the University of Wisconsin Law School discussed "Social Implications of Reme dial and Preventive Legislation in the United States." Among the numerous other speakers were C. E. Merriam of the University of Chicago, who dis approved of the influence of extremists, whether stand-patters or socialists, on social legislation. The sessions of the American Associa tion for Labor Legislation were opened by Professor Henry R. Seager, the president. Factory inspection and the mini mum wage were among the subjects receiving the attention of several speakers. Professor Seager advocated the minimum wage, from a study of con ditions in certain industries, and Pro fessor John R. Commons agreed with him in general, though he could not see how there would be any escape from the necessity of a mothers' pension law to supplement the minimum wage. John Fitch favored legislation for one day's rest in seven, based on the European model, and Charles Earl urged a new federal workmen's accident compensa tion act. Ex-President Roosevelt opened the meetings of the American Historical