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新的家园 A New World(2)

id without the assistance of thousands of others. Neither did they stamp out 14)malaria and 15)yellow fever for the exclusive benefit of the black man or the white man or the yellow man. Without regard to color or 16)creed they bestowed their blessings upon the whole of humanity. When 17)Goethals dug the Panama Canal, he was not thinking of either the Pacific or the Atlantic alone, nor of America alone, but of the world as a whole. When 18)Marconi invented his wireless, he did not stipulate, “Only Italian ships must be allowed to use the radio in case of disaster.”

  You probably see what I am driving at.

  No, I am not going to suggest the formation of a new society. That is not necessary. The problem will take care of itself. If it does not, there won’t be any problem in a couple of centuries because there won’t be any people left to worry about it.

  We no longer live in a world the future of which we can leave to itself. That policy went out when steam and electricity came in and when 19)Patagonia and 20)Lapland, Boston and Han-kow became neighbors, able to 21)confer with each other in less than two minutes. We are no longer manufacturing goods for ourselves alone. Japan can make our matches cheaper than we can ever hope to do and the Argentine can grow enough wheat to keep the whole of Germany from starving and at much smaller cost. We no longer can offer the Chinese Coolie or the 22)Kaffir one-twentieth of the wages we would pay a white man, because Moscow has a broadcasting station that carries very far and a staff of 23)polyglot announcers who inform the black and the yellow man that he is being cheated out of something that really belongs to him.

  We are no longer able to 24)plunder and 25)filch and rob as heartily as our fathers did because our conscience won’t let us or if we ourselves should have happened to be born without that spiritual 26)compass, because the collective conscience of mankind has at last reached the point where it is beginning to get a first flickering suspicion that honesty and common decency are as inevitable in international affairs as they are in those of private citizens.

  Thus far we have always lived as if we were a sort of accident—as if our stay on this planet was only a matter of years or at best of centuries. We have behaved with the indecent greed of passengers on a passenger-train who know that they will only have ten minutes for the three-course dinner to be served at the next halting-place.

  Gradually we are beginning to realize that we not only have been here quite a long time but that we are going to stay here almost indefinitely. Why the hurry and why the rush? When you move to a town where you expect to spend the rest of your days, you plan for the future. So do your neighbors, the butchers and bakers and the doctors and 27)undertakers. If they didn’t, the whole place would be in such hopeless disorder that it would be uninhabitable in less than a week’s time. When you come to think of it, is there really such a very great difference between the world at large and your own native village? If there is any difference, it is one of quantity rather than quality. And that is all!

  You will say that I have wandered all over the place, from 28)Kilimanjaro by way of Dr. Reed and Dr. Ross to planetary-planning for the future.

  “But What,” as Alice might have asked, “is the use of a Geography without a little Travelling?”

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