’Tis the logic of the ancient world,

And the gospel of to-day. —Ragnar Redbeard.


and Mr. Milne


The point of using dummy text for your paragraph is that it has a more-or-less normal distribution of letters. making it look like readable English.

Mr. Milne, an assistant Railway Commissioner, also a transparent candidate for limelight and shoddy praise, recently visited Goulburn accompanied by a soiree of servile cajolers. Ostensibly he visited the town to honor with his presence some function of the Railway Institute, but the wily old chap saw in the gathering an opportunity to achieve a cheap advertisement and some cheap flattery through the pages the Daily (kept) Press.

A Thousand Books of Fame

True to his preconceived plan, he accordingly proceeded to lash and calumniate the tactics of the modern working class unions. Report says that he was loudly cheered for his remarks; if that be so it is rather astounding, for Mr. Milne’s remarks surely do not reflect the intellectual status of the Goulburn railway men. They were not by any means learned criticisms nor even true to facts, and in several instances wandered dangerously near the border line of idiocy. Though he was accorded the best regards of the plutes,—an honour that can be won by all who consent to slander the efforts of the workers for improved conditions—the genera] lack of knowledge displayed should militate against his chances when another choice is being made to fill the Chief Commissioner’s chair.

Mr. Milne was apparently deeply concerned about the railway workers and their homes, although he bitterly condemned any scientific effort to better their conditions. The fact is that he “is out” to better his own conditions only, and care as much about the working class and their standard of existence as a hog does about hygiene; hence the great contradiction. He was sorry that certain influences were at work undermining the discipline (servility is the correct name) of the service. Of course Mr. Milne is sorry, but he is not alone in his sorrow; the toadies of Big Interests the world round are also sorry that the world’s workers are commencing to think and organise and .... act. He averred that “men must think and think hard.” Surely he is not so stupid that he cannot see that it is just this thinking habit which is bringing about the changes that terrify him: The man who does not reason round his own class position is the best wage-slave.

Men are thinking to-day and when enough of them think hard, the death knell of the present exploiting system will have been sounded and the world will say good-bye to its swarm of parasitical flunkeys.

The workers were warned that their efforts to hold a bigger part of the world’s wealth led directly to the reinauguration of the brutal “might is right” law. That noted Law has been the distinctive mark of so-called civilisation; every page of human history from the break-up of the primitive communes in the last stage of barbarism to the year 1916 A.D., is, through its operation, splashed with the blood of the world’s workers, and the world’s advance agents of progress.

Might is Right - By Covington Hall, in Direct Action, 31 January 1914.

Ragnar Redbeard very fittingly says:—

Might was Right when Christ was hanged,

Beside the Jordan’s foam.

And Might was Right when Caesar bled

Upon the stones of Rome.

Might was Right when Spartacus

Went down in seas of blood,

And when the commune perished in

The self-same crimson flood.

Might was Right when Danton died,

When Emmett passed away—

’Tis the logic of the ancient world,

And the gospel of to-day.

Might is right, when children die

By thousands in the mills,

When jewelled hands reach down and take

The gold their blood distils.

Might is Right when maidens give

Their love-dreams up for pay,

’Tis the logic of the ancient world

And the gospel of to-day.

Mr. Milne condemned sabotage—that nightmare of the Master Class—and he positively could not agree with the advice, “Don’t scab, on the unemployed.” “Don’t be a slave,” etc. Logically, he couldn’t agree with it. He was advocating scabbery and slavery—so how could he?

The Logic of To-day - By Ragnar Redbeard, in Direct Action, 15 October, 1914.

The adulteration of food-stuffs, the manufacture of shoddy clothing and the sale of light-weight good are all forms of sabotage and have been practised by the masters of the world and applauded as good business tactics for quite a long while. Now that the workers have decided to return shoddy or adulterated work for shoddy wages, the plutes can find no words strong enough to condemn their former friend. Master class sabotage has killed millions of the working class since it is they who use the shoddy materials; working class sabotage, on the other hand aims, not at murder, but at a reduction of profits, but then profits always are more sacred than human life!

Might is Right - By Ragnar Redbeard, in Direct Action, 1 May, 1915.

As for scabbing on the unemployed; it would be “hard to find a railway man stupid enough to believe that with a big army of unemployed always on the Labor market his own job and his rate of wages would be safe.” Given an army of unemployed and the boss will “sack” a man on the merest pretence; out-of-date craft unions are of no avail against the empty-belly men, and the man with a job to-day may be one of the unemployed to morrow, so that by scabbing on the unemployed, by working long hours and working extra hard a man is really scabbing on himself.

Mr. Milne completely annihilated modern methods of unionism; he made the men wise to the fact that modern union tactics were brought from a foreign land; this was reckoned to be the final indictment of the New Unionism. The crafty commissioner was playing on their White Australia prejudices or thought he was. He purposely forgot to explain—or maybe he didn’t know—that ideas are based upon the economic facts and demands of progress; that union tactics like army tactics must conform to the changing conditions or the union or army will cease to be an effective force. Also he neglected to say whether there were any foreign made engines, etc., or motor cars in the railway service or enjoyed by the railway commissioners. If there are it may be no uncommon sight to see the logical railway workers smashing up their private motor cars and refusing to have one unless it is built in N.S. Wales; perhaps we may even hear that Mr. Milne has refused to take a trip round the foreign lands—at the expense of the public, in whom he is so deeply interested, and to receive whose plaudits he is prepared to squeeze the last drop of blood out of the railway employees—in search of new ideas re railway management.

Our Freedom was also once again mentioned; if that cant about freedom is repeated and eulogised some more we may begin to think we are free despite the fact that we have to hire ourselves out by the day, week or year, to get a few life-yielding crusts, and that we are compelled to stay in the country and go through life with our brains swathed in cocaine bandages or with our life paddocked. The fakers who prate of our freedom would have us understand that our dear, kind, liberal bosses gave it us out of their goodness of heart, whereas we have had to simply tear it from them; those who have ever asked for a penny a day rise in wages know that.

Mr. Milne must yet learn that the working class of the 20th century are after the world now, that we want it, and recognising that we have the Might we are going to take it, and when we have it, will erect a structure of civilisation wherein those who do no useful work shall not eat, and where the best advertisers may not be recognised as the men best fitted for high positions.

Direct Action (Sydney, NSW) Saturday 18 March 1916

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