MARCH 6, 1942
CLEVELAND, Thursday—I left Seattle at 4:30 p.m. yesterday. I hated to leave Anna, but all is going well. When I talked on the telphone to Washington yesterday, I heard that one of our children and his wife had just flown in. I'm sure he will not be there more than a short time, so I am anxious to see him before he leaves.
During the last day in Seattle, I read two most interesting articles in Harper's Magazine for March—William Henry Chamberlain's "America in World War, 1917-1942" and Peter F. Drucker's "How To Pay For the War." Both articles are extraordinarily interesting to anyone who looks with seriousness at the part this nation must play during the war period, and in the reconstruction afterward.
The last paragraph of Mr. Chamberlain's article is one we cannot spread far enough, and so I quote it here: "We now represent the largest and strongest bastion of liberal civilization. Into our unworthy hands a great banner has been thrust. We must hold it up, even though there may come times when it may seem as heavy as the Cross of Calvary itself.
To those, and I am sure there are many, who worry daily, not only about how we are going to pay for the war, but about how we will help finance the reconstruction of the world of the future, I think Mr. Drucker's article will hold many interesting suggestions. No one is more aware than I am of the differences in the economic theories of our best economists, but there were one or two points in this that seemed to me simple enough for the layman to evaluate.
It seems sensible that interest-bearing bonds at the end of the war should not be in the hands of the rich or semi-rich group of people, but in one way or another should have been distributed to the people of the nation as a whole. It also seems sensible that in an effort to curtail the buying of consumers' goods, particularly such goods as are made in the factories which must be converted to war production, the people who buy the greater part of these goods must be induced to buy other kinds of commodities which are available even during this period, and to go without many things in the hope of having more in the future.
This can only be done by putting into their hands interest-bearing bonds, and making them realize that their sacrifices are patriotic and will bring them the things they really want, when they are available again. I realize most of this requires education, but both points seem to have good sense in back of them.
There also begins in this number, an autobiography of Albert Spaulding, called "Boy With Violin," which is delightfully written. On this long flight across the country, I am reading "Education for Death." I confess that it fills me with horror, and I am finding it hard to believe that such a system could exist.