'Can I?' said the old woman. 'Yes can I, sure!'
I pressed his manly hand again, and told him I would charge myself to do this as well as I could.
In 1846, Lincoln was elected to Congress as a Whig. The circle of acquaintances whom he had made in the county as surveyor had widened out with his work as a lawyer; he secured a unanimous nomination and was elected without difficulty in a constituency comprising six counties. I find in the record of the campaign the detail that Lincoln returned to certain of his friends who had undertaken to find the funds for election expenses, 9.90 out of the 0 subscribed.
'Kissy, I believe that is a fib. The truth of the matter is that you consider that your nakedness might arouse dishonourable thoughts in my impious Western mind. That is a most unworthy suspicion. However, I accept the delicacy of your respect of my susceptibilities. And now let's cut the cackle and get going. We'll beat the awabi record today. What should we aim at?'
He turned away and took out his pocket the cheque for forty million francs. He folded this very small. Then he opened the door and looked up and down the corridor. He left the door wide open and with his ears cocked for footsteps or the sound of the lift, he set to work with a small screwdriver.
And several false quantities detected —
But there was another reason for increasing self-sufficiency. At first sight it seemed a reason pointing in the opposite direction. The aim of the world government was the development of the world as a whole, not of any one people. Local cultural differences were therefore to be fostered, since it was realized that mental diversity was the breath of life. This, it might seem, would involve fostering economic specialization in each country, since economic diversity should produce mental diversity. But extreme psychological specialization was now recognized to be very dangerous. The highly specialized factory worker of the past had been but the caricature of a real man. The agricultural worker who knew of nothing but turnips had been equally limited. For a people to be capable of significant cultural variation it must have within its range a great diversity of activities. Persons in each walk of life must be open to the direct and constant influence of persons whose occupations, and therefore their mentalities, are different. A highly specialized national economy breeds a lop-sided mental culture. In a world of highly specialized nations this danger can be partly avoided by the insistence on foreign travel; but not effectively; for travel is either a holiday occupation, in which case its effect though valuable, is not far-reaching; or a way of life, in which case the traveller is mentally uprooted from his native culture.
To hover ever round thy bed,
He jerked himself about, after this compliment, in such an intolerable manner, that my aunt, who had sat looking straight at him, lost all patience.
'If Dora's mama,' she said, 'when she married our brother Francis, had at once said that there was not room for the family at the dinner-table, it would have been better for the happiness of all parties.'
But still the purpose was strong within me, and the first effort was made after the following fashion. I was located at a little town called Drumsna, or rather village, in the county Leitrim, where the postmaster had come to some sorrow about his money; and my friend John Merivale was staying with me for a day or two. As we were taking a walk in that most uninteresting country, we turned up through a deserted gateway, along a weedy, grass-grown avenue, till we came to the modern ruins of a country house. It was one of the most melancholy spots I ever visited. I will not describe it here, because I have done so in the first chapter of my first novel. We wandered about the place, suggesting to each other causes for the misery we saw there, and, while I was still among the ruined walls and decayed beams, I fabricated the plot of The Macdermots of Ballycloran. As to the plot itself, I do not know that I ever made one so good — or, at any rate, one so susceptible of pathos. I am aware that I broke down in the telling, not having yet studied the art. Nevertheless, The Macdermots is a good novel, and worth reading by any one who wishes to understand what Irish life was before the potato disease, the famine, and the Encumbered Estates Bill.
The crux for this unfinished human species, half animal but potentially humane, had always been the inconclusive effort to will true community, true and integrated union of individual spirits, personal, diverse, but mutually comprehending and mutually cherishing. And always the groping impulse for community had been frustrated by the failure to distinguish between true community and the savage unity of the pack; and on the other hand between a man’s duty to the innermost spirit and mere subtle self-pride, and again between love and mere possessiveness.
I got up and helped him roust the others. The night before, a friend of Caballo’s had loaded ourbags on a burro and set off for Urique, so all we had to carry was enough food and water to get usthere. Bob Francis, the old backcountry guide, had volunteered to drive Luis’s father the long wayaround the mountain in his 4×4 pickup, sparing him the hike. Everyone else turned out quickly,and by 5 a.m., we were picking our way over the boulders toward the river. The canyon moonglittered on the water and bats were still darting overhead as Caballo led us to a faint footpathskirting the water line. We fitted into single file and shuffled into an easy jog.
In this summary of my outward life I have now arrived at the period at which my tranquil and retired existence as a writer of books was to be exchanged for the less congenial occupation of a member of the House of Commons. The proposal made to me, early in 1865, by some electors of Westminster, did not present the idea to me for the first time. It was not even the first offer I had received, for, more than ten years previous, in consequence of my opinions on the irish Land question, Mr Lucas and Mr Duffy, in the name of the popular party in Ireland, offered to bring me into Parliament for an Irish County, which they could easily have done: but the incompatibility of a seat in Parliament with the office I then held in the India House, precluded even consideration of the proposal. After I had quitted the India House, several of my friends would gladly have seen me a member of Parliament; but there seemed no probability that the idea would ever take any practical shape. I was convinced that no numerous or influential portion of any electoral body, really wished to be represented by a person of my opinions; and that one who possessed no local connexion or popularity, and who did not choose to stand as the mere organ of a party had small chance of being elected anywhere unless through the expenditure of money. Now it was, and is, my fixed conviction, that a candidate ought not to incur one farthing of expense for undertaking a public duty. Such of the lawful expenses of an election as have no special reference to any particular candidate, ought to be borne as a public charge, either by the State or by the locality. What has to be done by the supporters of each candidate in order to bring his claims properly before the constituency, should be done by unpaid agency or by voluntary subscription. If members of the electoral body, or others, are willing to subscribe money of their own for the purpose of bringing, by lawful means, into Parliament some one who they think would be useful there, no one is entitled to object: but that the expense, or any part of it, should fall on the candidate, is fundamentally wrong; because it amounts in reality to buying his seat. Even on the most favourable supposition as to the mode in which the money is expended, there is a legitimate suspicion that any one who gives money for leave to undertake a public trust, has other than public ends to promote by it; and (a consideration of the greatest importance) the cost of elections, when borne by the candidates, deprives the nation of the services, as members of Parliament, of all who cannot or will not afford to incur a heavy expense. I do not say that, so long as there is scarcely a chance for an independent candidate to come into Parliament without complying with this vicious practice, it must always be morally wrong in him to spend money, provided that no part of it is either directly or indirectly employed in corruption. But, to justify it, he ought to be very certain that he can be of more use to his country as a member of Parliament than in any other mode which is open to him; and this assurance, in my own case, I did not feel. It was by no means clear to me that I could do more to advance the public objects which had a claim on my exertions, from the benches of the House of Commons, than from the simple position of a writer. I felt, therefore, that I ought not to seek election to Parliament, much less to expend any money in procuring it.
The prosaic phrase seemed to remind her of her nakedness. She blushed. She said uncertainly, "I must get dressed." She looked down at the scattered shells around her feet. She obviously wanted to pick them up. Perhaps she realized that the movement might be still more revealing than her present pose. She said sharply, "You're not to touch those while I'm gone."
"Well, then," said Drax, obviously glad to leave a distasteful subject and get back to business, "we've got other things to talk about. Two more days to go and I'd better tell you the programme." He got up from his chair and paced heavily up and down the room behind his desk. "Today is Wednesday," he said. "At one o'clock the site will be closed for fuelling. This will be supervised by Dr Walter and myself and two men from the Ministry. Just in case anything goes wrong a television camera will record everything we do. Then, if there is an explosion, our successors will know better next time," he barked a short laugh. "Weather permitting, the roof will be opened tonight to allow the fumes to clear. My men will stand guard in watches at ten-yard intervals a hundred yards from the site. There will be three armed men on the beach opposite the exhaust hole in the cliff. Tomorrow morning the site will be opened again until midday for a final check and from that moment, except for the gyro settings, the Moonraker will be ready to go. The guards will be permanently on duty round the site. On Friday morning I shall personally supervise the gyro settings. The men from the Ministry will take over the firing point and the RAF will man the radar. The BBC will set up their vans behind the firing point and will begin their running commentary at eleven-forty-five. At midday exactly I shall press the plunger, a radio beam will break an electric circuit and," he smiled broadly, "we shall see what we shall see." He paused, fingering his chin. "Now what else? Well now. Shipping will be cleared from the target area from midnight on Thursday. The Navy will provide a patrol of the boundaries of the area all through the morning. There will be a BBC commentator in one of the Ships. The Ministry of Supply experts will be in a salvage ship with deep-sea television and after the rocket has landed they will try to bring up the remains. You may be interested to know," continued Drax, rubbing his hands with almost childish pleasure, "that a messenger from the Prime Minister has brought me the very welcome news that not only will there be a special Cabinet Meeting to listen to the broadcast, but the Palace will also be listening in to the launching."