This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V26", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
This is a review of McLeod's Economies, and while it shows how illogical are many of the principles presented by that writer, it seems to us that the same destruction must follow with many of his own. For our part, works of this character have no great charm; so very much of what is right or wrong in human action depends on contingencies, that what is right or wrong in human action has to be described by results. As a facetious writer says, whether the efforts of a people in a national struggle is finally decided to be a glorious revolution, or an infamous rebellion, depends on the success of the effort.
Some of the axioms here presented, seem especially dependent on contingencies or circumstances. For instance, the author says, " Whatever two people mutually agree to on a matter of exchange, is just." But it seems to us that if ninety-nine people "mutually agree" to give a dollar for a pear tree, and the nurseryman gets some poor fellow to "mutually agree" to give him five dollars for the same article, the transaction is not just. The simple reflection on this illustration shows that some other element besides "mutual agreement," must enter into a bargain to render it "just." Again, what are we to think of " competition is a great evil." Nothing will stop this evil but "education, and the repeal of all laws which sustain injustice." We must first agree as to what is "education," and what is "injustice." According to this author, "monopolies" constitute injustice, and all "laws sustaining them should be repealed." Now the writer of this book can very well afford, perhaps, to argue this way, when railroad companies are in his mind - but if he should be the fortunate inventor of a sewing machine, or a telephone - or say of some new fruit or flower - ten chances to one but he would be on the lookout for some patent, by which he could enjoy a "monopoly" of the good thing for as many years as the law would let him.
To many minds however, problems such as are here discussed are very enjoyable, and to all such the work will be very welcome.