friend of mine, who believes as I do upon this question was talking a while
ago with another friend of mine who is a greenbacker, but who had not paid
much attention to the land question. Our greenback friend said, »Yes,
yes, the land question is an important question; oh, I admit the land question
is a very important question; but then there are other important questions.
There is this question and that question, and the other question; and there
is the money question. The money question is a very important question;
it is a more important question than the land question. You give me all
the money, and you can take all the land.« My friend said, »Well,
suppose you had all the money in the world and I had all the land in the
world. What would you do if I were to give you notice to quit?«
Do you know that I do not think that the average
man realises what land is? I know a little girl who has been going to school
for some time, studying geography, and all that sort of thing; and one day
she said to me: »Here is something about the surface of the earth.
I wonder what the surface of the earth looks like?« »Well,«
I said, »look out into the yard there. That is the surface of the
earth.« She said, »That the surface of the earth? Our yard the
surface of the earth? Why, I never thought of it!« That is very much
the case not only with grown men, but with such wise beings as newspaper editors.
They seem to think, when you talk of land, that you always refer to farms;
to think that the land question is a question that relates entirely to farmers,
as though land had no other use than growing crops. Now, I should like to
know how a man could even edit a newspaper without having the use of some
land. He might swing himself by straps and go up in a balloon, but he could
not even then get along without land. What supports the balloon in the air?
Land; the surface of the earth. Let the earth drop, and what would become
of the balloon? The air that supports the balloon is supported in turn by
land. So it is with everything else men can do. Whether a man is working
away three thousand feet under the surface of the earth or whether he is
working up in the top of one of those immense buildings that they have in
New York; whether he is ploughing the soil or sailing across the ocean, he
is still using land.
Land! Why, in owning a piece of ground, what
do you own ? The lawyers will tell you that you own from the centre of the
earth right up to heaven; and, so far as all human purposes go, you do.
In New York they are building houses thirteen and fourteen stories high.
What are men, living in those upper stories, paying for? There is a friend
of mine who has an office in one of them, and he estimates that he pays by
the cubic foot for air. Well, the man who owns the surface of the land has
the renting of the air up there, and would have if the buildings were carried
up for miles.
This land question is the bottom question. Man
is a land animal. Suppose you want to build a house; can you build it without
a place to put it? What is it built of? Stone, or mortar, or wood, or iron—they
all come from the earth. Think of any article of wealth you choose, any
of those things which men struggle for, where do they come from? From the
land. It is the bottom question. The land question is simply the labour
question; and when some men own that element from which all wealth must
be drawn, and upon which all must live, then they have the power of living
without work, and, therefore, those who do work get less of the products
Did you ever think of the utter absurdity and
strangeness of the fact that, all over the civilised world, the working
classes are the poor classes? Go into any city in the world, and get into
a cab and ask the man to drive you where the working people live. He won't
take you to where the fine houses are. He will take you, on the contrary,
into the squalid quarters, the poorer quarters. Did you ever think how curious
that is? Think for a moment how it would strike a rational being who had
never been on the earth before, if such an intelligence could come down,
and you were to explain to him how we live on earth, how houses and food
and clothing, and all the many things we need were all produced by work,
would he not think that the working people would be the people who lived
in the finest houses and had most of everything that work produces? Yet,
whether you took him to London or Paris or New York, or even to Burlington,
he would find that those called the working people were the people who live
in the poorest houses.
All this is strange—just think of it. We naturally
despise poverty; and it is reasonable that we should. I do not say—I distinctly
repudiate it—that the people who are poor are poor always from their own
fault, or even in most cases; but it ought to be so. If any good man or woman
could create a world, it would be a sort of a world in which no one would
be poor unless he was lazy or vicious. But that is just precisely the kind
of a world this is; that is just precisely the kind of a world the Creator
has made. Nature gives to labour, and to labour alone; there must be human
work before any article of wealth can be produced; and in the natural state
of things the man who toiled honestly and well would be the rich man, and
he who did not work would be poor. We have so reversed the order of nature
that we are accustomed to think of the workingman as a poor man.
And if you trace it out I believe you will see
that the primary cause of this is that we compel those who work to pay others
for permission to do so. You may buy a coat, a horse, a house; there you
are paying the seller for labour exerted, for something that he has produced,
or that he has got from the man who did produce it; but when you pay a
man for land, what are you paying him for? You are paying for something
that no man has produced; you pay him for something that was here before
man was, or for a value that was created, not by him individually, but
by the community of which you are a part. What is the reason that the land
here, where we stand tonight, is worth more than it was twenty-five years
ago? What is the reason that land in the centre of New York, that once could
be bought by the mile for a jug of whiskey, is now worth so much that, though
you were to cover it with gold, you would not have its value? Is it not because
of the increase of population? Take away that population, and where would
the value of the land be? Look at it in any way you please.
We talk about over-production. How can there
be such a thing as over-production while people want? All these things that
are said to be over-produced are desired by many people. Why do they not
get them? They do not get them because they have not the means to buy them;
not that they do not want them. Why have not they the means to buy them?
They earn too little. When the great masses of men have to work for an average
of $1.40 a day, it is no wonder that great quantities of goods cannot be
Now why is it that men have to work for such
low wages? Because if they were to demand higher wages there are plenty of
unemployed men ready to step into their places. It is this mass of unemployed
men who compel that fierce competition that drives wages down to the point
of bare subsistence. Why is it that there are men who cannot get employment?
Did you ever think what a strange thing it is that men cannot find employment?
Adam had no difficulty in finding employment; neither had Robinson Crusoe;
the finding of employment was the last thing that troubled them.
If men cannot find an employer, why cannot they
employ themselves? Simply because they are shut out from the element on
which human labour can alone be exerted. Men are compelled to compete with
each other for the wages of an employer, because they have been robbed of
the natural opportunities of employing themselves; because they cannot find
a piece of God's world on which to work without paving some other human creature
for the privilege.
I do not mean to say that even after you had
set right this fundamental injustice, there would not be many things to do;
but this I do mean to say, that our treatment of land lies at the bottom
of all social questions. This I do mean to say, that, do what you please,
reform as you may, you never can get rid of wide-spread poverty so long
as the element on which and from which all men must live is made the private
property of some men. It is utterly impossible. Reform government—get taxes
down to the minimum—build railroads; institute co-operative stores; divide
profits, if you choose, between employers and employed-and what will be
the result? The result will be that the land will increase in value—that
will be the result—that and nothing else. Experience shows this. Do not
all improvements simply increase the value of land—the price that some must
pay others for the privilege of living?
Consider the matter, I say it with all reverence,
and I merely say it because I wish to impress a truth upon your minds—it
is utterly impossible, so long as His laws are what they are, that God himself
could relieve poverty—utterly impossible. Think of it and you will see.
Men pray to the Almighty to relieve poverty. But poverty comes not from
God's laws—it is blasphemy of the worst kind to say that; it comes from
man's injustice to his fellows. Supposing the Almighty were to hear the
prayer, how could He carry out the request so long as His laws are what
Consider—the Almighty gives us nothing of the
things that constitute wealth; He merely gives us the raw material, which
must be utilised by man to produce wealth. Does He not give us enough of
that now? How could He relieve poverty even if He were to give us more?
Supposing in answer to these prayers He were to increase the power of the
sun; or the virtue of the soil? Supposing He were to make plants more prolific,
or animals to produce after their kind more abundantly? Who would get the
benefit of it? Take a country where land is completely monopolised, as it
is in most of the civilised countries—who would get the benefit of it? Simply
the landowners. And even if God in answer to prayer were to send down out
of the heavens those things that men require, who would get the benefit?
In the Old Testament we are told that when the
Israelites journeyed through the desert, they were hungered, and that God
sent manna down out of the heavens. There was enough for all of them, and
they all took it and were relieved. But supposing that desert had been held
as private property, as the soil of Great Britain is held, as the soil even
of our new States is being held; suppose that one of the Israelites had a
square mile, and another one had twenty square miles, and another one had
a hundred square miles, and the great majority of the Israelites did not
have enough to set the soles of their feet upon, which they could call their
own—what would become of the manna? What good would it have done to the majority?
Not a whit. Though God had sent down manna enough for all, that manna would
have been the property of the landholders; they would have employed some
of she others perhaps, to gather it up into heaps for them, and would have
sold it to their hungry brethren. Consider it; this purchase and sale of
manna might have gone on until the majority of Israelites had given all they
had, even to the clothes off their backs. What then? Then they would not
have had anything left to buy manna with, and the consequences would have
been that while they went hungry the manna would have lain in great heaps,
and the landowners would have been complaining of the over-production of
manna. There would have been a great harvest of manna and hungry people, just
precisely the phenomenon that we see to-day.
I cannot go over all the points I would like
to try, but I wish to call your attention to the utter absurdity of private
property in land! Why, consider it, the idea of a man's selling the earth—the
earth, our common mother. A man selling that which no man produced—a man
passing title from one generation to another. Why, it is the most absurd thing
in the world. Why, did you ever think of it? What right has a dead man to
land? For whom was this earth created? It was created for the living, certainly,
not for the dead. Well, now we treat it as though it was created for the
dead. Where do our land titles come from? They come from men who for the
most part are past and gone. Here in this new country you get a little nearer
the original source; but go to the Eastern States and go back over the Atlantic.
There you may clearly see the power that comes from landownership.
As I say, the man that owns the land is the
master of those who must live on it. Here is a modern instance: you who
are familiar with the history of the Scottish Church know that in the forties
there was a disruption in the church. You who have read Hugh Miller's work
on »The Cruise of the Betsey« know something about it; how
a great body, led by Dr. Chalmers, came out from the Established Church
and said they would set up a Free Church. In the Established Church were
a great many of the landowners. Some of them, like the Duke of Buccleugh,
owning miles and miles of land on which no common Scotsman had a right to
put his foot, save by the Duke of Buccleugh's permission. These landowners
refused not only to allow these Free Churchmen to have ground upon which
to erect a church, but they would not let them stand on their land and worship
God. You who have read »The Cruise of the Betsey« know that it
is the story of a clergyman who was obliged to make his home in a boat on
that wild sea because he was not allowed to have land enough to live on.
In many places the people had to take the sacrament with the tide coming
to their knees—many a man lost his life worshipping on the roads in rain
and snow. They were not permitted to go on Mr. Landlord's land and worship
God, and had to take to the roads. The Duke of Buccleugh stood out for seven
years compelling people to worship in the roads, until finally relenting
a little, he allowed them to worship God in a gravel pit; whereupon they
passed a resolution of thanks to His Grace.
But that is not what I wanted to tell you. The
thing that struck me was this significant fact: As soon as the disruption
occurred, the Free Church, composed of a great many able men, at once sent
a delegation to the landlords to ask permission for Scotsmen to worship God
in Scotland and in their own way. This delegation set out for London—they
had to go to London, England, to get permission for Scotsmen to worship God
in Scotland, and in their own native home!
But that is not the most absurd thing. In one
place where they were refused land upon which to stand and worship God,
the late landowner had died and his estate was in the hands of the trustees,
and the answer of the trustees was, that so far as they were concerned
they would exceedingly like to allow them to have a place to put up a church
to worship God, but they could not conscientiously do it because they knew
that such a course would be very displeasing to the late Mr. Monaltie! Now
this dead man had gone to heaven, let us hope; at any rate he had gone away
from this world, but lest it might displease him men yet living could not
worship God. Is it possible for absurdity to go any further?
You may say that those Scotch people are very
absurd people, but they are not a whit more so than we are. I read only
a little while ago of some Long Island fishermen who had been paying as
rent for the privilege of fishing there, a certain part of the catch. They
paid it because they believed that James II, a dead man centuries ago, a
man who never put his foot in America, a king who was kicked off the English
throne, had said they had to pay it, and they got up a committee, went
to the county town and searched the records. They could not find anything
in the records to show that James II had ever ordered that they should give
any of their fish to anybody, and so they refused to pay any longer. But
if they had found that James II had really said they should they would have
gone on paying. Can anything be more absurd?
There is a square in New York—Stuyvesant Square
that is locked up at six o'clock every evening, even on the long summer evenings.
Why is it locked up? Why are the children not allowed to play there? Why
because old Mr. Stuyvesant, dead and gone I don't know how many years ago,
so willed it. Now can anything be more absurd?*
*)After a popular agitation, the
park authorities since decided to have the gates open later than six o'clock.
Yet that is not any more absurd than our land titles. From whom do they
come? Dead man after dead man. Suppose you get on the cars here going to
Council Bluffs or Chicago. You find a passenger with his baggage strewn over
the seats. You say: »Will you give me a seat, if you please, sir?«
He replies: »No; I bought this seat.« »Bought this seat?
From whom did you buy it?« I bought it from the man who got out at
the last station,« That is the way we manage this earth of ours.
Is it not a self-evident truth, as Thomas Jefferson
said, that »the land belongs in usufruct to the living,« and
that they who have died have left it, and have no power to say how it shall
be disposed of? Title to land! Where can a man get any title which makes
the earth his property? There is a sacred right to property—sacred because
ordained by the laws of nature, that is to say, by the laws of God, and necessary
to social order and civilisation. That is the right of property in things
produced by labour; it rests on the right of a man to himself. That which
a man produces, that is his against all the world, to give or to keep, to
lend, to sell or to bequeath; but how can he get such a right to land when
it was here before he came? Individual claims to land rest only on appropriation.
I read in a recent number of the »Nineteenth Century,« possibly
some of you may have read it, an article by an ex-prime minister of Australia
in which there was a little story that attracted my attention. It was of
a man named Galahard, who in the early days got up to the top of a high hill
in one of the finest parts of western Australia. He got up there, looked
all around, and made this proclamation: »All the land that is in my
sight from the top of this hill I claim for myself; and all the land that
is out of sight I claim for my son John.«
That story is of universal application. Land
titles everywhere come from just such appropriations. Now, under certain
circumstances, appropriation can give a right. You invite a company of gentlemen
to dinner and you say to them: »Be seated, gentlemen,« and I
get into this chair. Well, that seat for the time being is mine by the right
of appropriation. It would be very ungentlemanly, it would be very wrong
for any one of the other guests to come up and say: »Get out of that
chair; I want to sit there I« But that right of possession, which is
good so far as the chair is concerned, for the time, does not give me a right
to appropriate all there is on the table before me. Grant that a man has
a right to appropriate such natural elements as he can use, has he any right
to appropriate more than he can use? Has a guest in such a case as I have
supposed a right to appropriate more than he needs and make other people
stand up? That is what is done.
Why, look all over this country—look at this
town or any other town. If men only took what they wanted to use we should
all have enough; but they take what they do not want to use at all. Here
are a lot of Englishmen coming over here and getting titles to our land in
vast tracts; what do they want with our land? They do not want it at all;
it is not the land they want; they have no use for American land. What they
want is the income that they know they can in a little while get from it.
Where does that income come from? It comes from labour, from the labour
of American citizens. What we are selling to these people is our children,
Poverty! Can there be any doubt of its cause?
Go, into the old countries—go into western Ireland, into the highlands
of Scotland—these are purely primitive communities. There you will find
people as poor as poor can be—living year after year on oatmeal or on potatoes,
and often going hungry. I could tell you many a pathetic story. Speaking
to a Scottish physician who was telling me how this diet was inducing among
these people a disease similar to that which from the same cause is ravaging
Italy (the Pellagra), I said to him: »There is plenty of fish; why
don't they catch fish? There is plenty of game; I know the laws are against
it, but cannot they take it on the sly?« »That,« he said,
»never enters their heads. Why, if a man was even suspected of having
a taste for trout or grouse he would have to leave at once.«
There is no difficulty in discovering what makes
those people poor. They have no right to anything that nature gives them.
All they can make above a living they must pay to the landlord. They not
only have to pay for the land that they use, but they have to pay for the
seaweed that comes ashore and for the turf they dig from the bogs. They
dare not improve, for any improvements they make are made an excuse for
putting up the rent. These people who work hard live in hovels, and the
landlords, who do not work at all—oh! they live in luxury in London or Paris.
If they have hunting boxes there, why they are magnificent castles as compared
with the hovels in which the men live who do the work. Is there any question
as to the cause of poverty there?
Now go into the cities and what do you see!
Why, you see even a lower depth of poverty; aye, if I would point out the
worst of the evils of land monopoly I would not take you to Connemara;
I would not take you to Skye or Kintire—I would take you to Dublin or Glasgow
or London. There is something worse than physical deprivation, something
worse than starvation; and that is the degradation of the mind, the death
of the soul. That is what you will find in those cities.
Now, what is the cause of that? Why, it is plainly to be seen; the people
driven off the land in the country are driven into the slums of the cities.
For every man that is driven off the land the demand for the produce of
the workmen of the cities is lessened; and the man himself with his wife
and children, is forced among those workmen to compete upon any terms for
a bare living and force wages down. Get work he must or starve—get work he
must or do that which those people, so long as they maintain their manly
feelings, dread more than death, go to the alms-houses. That is the reason,
here as in Great Britain, that the cities are overcrowded. Open the land
that is locked up, that is held by dogs in the manger, who will not use it
themselves and will not allow anybody else to use it, and you would see no
more of tramps and hear no more of over-production.
The utter absurdity of this thing of private
property in land! I defy any one to show me any good from it, look where
you please. Go out in the new lands, where my attention was first called
to it, or go to the heart of the capital of the world—London. Everywhere,
when your eyes are once opened, you will see its inequality and you will
see its absurdity. You do not have to go farther than Burlington. You have
here a most beautiful site for a city, but the city itself as compared with
what it might be is a miserable, straggling town. A gentleman showed me to-day
a big hole alongside one of your streets. The place has been filled up all
around it and this hole is left. It is neither pretty nor useful. Why does
that hole stay there? Well, it stays there because somebody claims it as
his private property. There is a man, this gentleman told me, who wished to
grade another lot and wanted somewhere to put the dirt he took off it, and
he offered to buy this hole so that he might fill it up. Now it would have
been a good thing for Burlington to have it filled up, a good thing for you
all—your town would look better, and you yourself would be in no danger of
tumbling into it some dark night. Why, my friend pointed out to me another
similar hole in which water had collected and told me that two children had
been drowned there. And he likewise told me that a drunken man some years
ago had fallen into such a hole and had brought suit against the city which
cost you taxpayers some $11,000. Clearly it is to the interest of you all
to have that particular hole I am talking of filled up. The man who wanted
to fill it up offered the hole owner $300. But the hole owner refused the
offer and declared that he would hold out until he could get $1000; and in
the meanwhile that unsightly and dangerous hole must remain. This is but
an illustration of private property in land.
You may see the same thing all over this country.
See how injuriously in the agricultural districts this thing of private
property in land afflects the roads and the distances between the people.
A man does not take what land he wants, what he can use, but he takes all
he can get, and the consequence is that his next neighbour has to go further
along, people are separated from each other further than they ought to be,
to the increased difficulty of production, to the loss of neighbourhood and
companionship. They have more roads to maintain than they can decently maintain;
they must do more work to get the same result, and life is in every way harder
When you come to the cities it is just the other
way. In the country the people are too much scattered; in the great cities
they are too crowded. Go to a city like New York and there they are jammed
together like sardines in a box, living family upon family, one above the
other. It is an unnatural and unwholesome life. How can you have anything
like a home in a tenement room, or two or three rooms? How can children
be brought up healthily with no place to play? Two or three weeks ago I
read of a New York judge who fined two little boys five dollars for playing
hop-scotch on the street—where else could they play? Private property in
land had robbed them of all place to play. Even a temperance man, who had
investigated the subject, said that in his opinion the gin palaces of London
were a positive good in this, that they enabled the people whose abodes
were dark and squalid rooms to see a little brightness and thus prevent
them from going wholly mad.
What is the reason for this overcrowding of
cities? There is no natural reason. Take New York, one half its area is
not built upon. Why, then, must people crowd together as they do there?
Simply because of private ownership of land. There is plenty of room to
build houses and plenty, of people who want to build houses, but before
anybody can build a house a blackmail price must be paid to some dog in
the manger. It costs in many cases more to get vacant ground upon which
to build a house than it does to build the house. And then what happens to
the man who pays this blackmail and builds a house? Down comes the tax-gatherer
and fines him for building the house.
It is so all over the United States—the men
who improve, the men who turn the prairie into farms and the desert into
gardens, the men who beautify your cities, are taxed and fined for having
done these things. Now, nothing is clearer than that the people of New
York want more houses; and I think that even here in Burlington you could
get along with more houses. Why, then, should you fine a man who builds
one? Look all over this country—the bulk of the taxation rests upon the
improver; the man who puts up a building, or establishes a factory, or
cultivates a farm he is taxed for it; and not merely taxed for it, but I
think in nine cases out of ten the land which he uses, the bare land, is
taxed more than the adjoining lot or the adjoining 160 acres that some speculator
is holding as a mere dog in the manger, not using it himself and not allowing
anybody else to use it.
I am talking too long; but let me in a few words
point out the way of getting rid of land monopoly, securing the right of
all to the elements which are necessary for life. We could not divide the
land. In a rude state of society, as among the ancient Hebrews. giving each
family its lot and making it inalienable we might secure something like
equality. But in a complex civilisation that will not suffice. It is not,
however, necessary to divide up the land. All that is necessary is to divide
up the income that comes from the land. In that way we can secure absolute
equality; nor could the adoption of this principle involve any rude shock
or violent change. It can be brought about gradually and easily by abolishing
taxes that now rest upon capital, labour and improvements, and raising all
our public revenues by the taxation of land values; and the longer you think
of it the clearer you will see that in every possible way will it he a benefit.
Now, supposing we should abolish all other taxes
direct and indirect, substituting for them a tax upon land values, what
would be the effect? In the first place it would be to kill speculative
values. It would be to remove from the newer parts of the country the bulk
of the taxation and put it on the richer parts. It would be to exempt the
pioneer from taxation and make the larger cities pay more of it. It would
be to relieve energy and enterprise, capital and labour, from all those
burdens that now bear upon them. What a start that would give to production!
In the second place we could, from the value of the land, not merely pay
all the present expenses of the government, but we could do infinitely more.
In the city of San Francisco James Lick left a few blocks of ground to be
used for public purposes there, and the rent amounts to so much, that out
of it will be built the largest telescope in the world, large public baths
and other public buildings, and various costly works. If, instead of these
few blocks, the whole value of the land upon which the city is built had
accrued to San Francisco what could she not do?
So in this little town, where land values are
very low as compared with such cities as Chicago and San Francisco, you
could do many things for mutual benefit and public improvement did you appropriate
to public purposes the land values that now go to individuals. You could
have a great free library; you could have an art gallery; you could get
yourselves a public park, a magnificent public park, too. You have here
one of the finest natural sites for a beautiful town I know of, and I have
travelled much. You might make on this site a city that it would be a pleasure
to live in. You will not as you go now—oh, no! Why, the very fact that you
have a magnificent view here will cause somebody to hold on all the more
tightly to the land that commands this view and charge higher prices for
it. The State of New York wants to buy a strip of land so as to enable the
people to see Niagara, but what a price she must pay for it! Look at all
the great cities; in Philadelphia, for instance, in order to build their
great city hall they had to block up the only two wide streets they had
in the city. Everywhere you go you may see how private property in land
prevents public as well as private improvement.
But I have not time to enter into further details.
I can only ask you to think upon this thing, and the more you will see
its desirability. As an English friend of mine puts it: »No taxes
and a pension for everybody;« and why should it not be? To take land
values for public purposes is not really to impose a tax, but to take for
public purposes a value created by the community. And out of the fund which
would thus accrue from the common property, we might, without degradation
to anybody, provide enough to actually secure from want all who were deprived
of their natural protectors or met with accident, or any man who should
grow so old that he could not work. All prating that is heard from some
quarters about its hurting the common people to give them what they do
not work for is humbug. The truth is, that anything that injures self-respect,
degrades, does harm; but if you give it as a right, as something to which
every citizen is entitled to, it does not degrade. Charity schools do degrade
children that are sent to them, but public schools do not.
But all such benefits as these, while great,
would be incidental. The great thing would be that the reform I propose would
tend to open opportunities to labour and enable men to provide employment
for themselves. That is the great advantage. We should gain the enormous
productive power that is going to waste all over the country, the power of
idle hands that would gladly be at work. And that removed, then you would
see wages begin to mount. It is not that everyone would turn farmer, or everyone
would build himself a house if he had an opportunity for doing so, but so
many could and would, as to relieve the pressure on the labour market and
provide employment for all others. And as wages mounted to the higher levels,
then you would see the productive power increased. The country where wages
are high is the country of greatest productive powers. Where wages are highest,
there will invention be most active; there will labour be most intelligent;
there will be the greatest yield for the expenditure of exertion. The more
you think of it the more clearly you will see that what I say is true. I
cannot hope to convince you in an hour or two, but I shall be content if
I shall put you upon inquiry.
Think for yourselves; ask yourselves whether this wide-spread
fact of poverty is not a crime, and a crime for which every one of us, man
and woman, who does not do what he or she can do to call attention to it
and do away with it, is responsible.