Lewis Masquerier’s “Sociology” Reconstructed

  • Lewis Masquerier, “Godology.—No. 1,” Boston Investigator 39 no. 27 (November 3, 1869): 209.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “Godology.—No. 2,” Boston Investigator 39 no. 28 (November 10, 1869): 217.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 2,” Boston Investigator 40 no. 29 (November 16, 1870): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 3,” Boston Investigator 40 no. 30 (November 23, 1870): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 4,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 9 (June 28, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 5,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 10 (July 5, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 6,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 11 (July 12, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 7,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 12 (July 19, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 8,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 13 (July 26, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 9,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 15 (August 9, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 10,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 16 (August 16, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 11,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 19 (September 6, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 12,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 26 (October 26, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 13,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 27 (November 1, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 14,” Boston Investigator 41 no. 31 (November 29, 1871): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 15,” The Boston Investigator. 41 no. 37 (2117). (January 10, 1872): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 16,” The Boston Investigator. 41 no. 38 (2118). (January 17, 1872): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 17,” The Boston Investigator. 41 no. 44 (2124). (February 28, 1872): 1.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 18,” The Boston Investigator. 41 no. 49 (2129). (April 3, 1872): 2.
  • Lewis Masquerier, “An Oecumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers. No. 19,” The Boston Investigator. 41 no. 50 (2130). (April 10, 1872): 2.

The articles collected here are the original material from which Lewis Masquerier constructed his 1877 book Sociology: Or, The Reconstruction of Society, Government, and Property. The long series of articles bearing the title “An Œcumenical Convention of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers” became the first major section of the work, pages 25–78.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 1

Mr. Editor:—As it has been announced that the “Evangelical Alliance of Protestants” will hold an Œcumenical Courncil in New York city as an offset to that held in Rome, it is recommended that the “Land Reform Association of the United States,” the “International Association of Workingmen” in Europe and the United States, the “Secular Association of the United States and Europe,” the “German Rationalists,” “Free Religionists,” and real Protestants, should hold a Council in New York city during the session of the above Evangelical Council, for the discussion of the thorough principles of rights and reform, to which all are invited, without regard to sex, color, sect, party, or country.

A system of questions embracing the whole world of political, economical, moral, and religious reform, should be presented for discussion. They should begin by pointing out the three essential properties of matter, as those of extension to occupy space, of resisting the penetration of each other, and of resisting any change into each other as new matter, so necessary as a foundation, that after matter has been compounded into an infinity of substances it may return to its first elements again, and thus preserve the permanence of the Universe; showing there is no raw or created matter, but only concreted, transformed, and original matter.

Then matter by concreting gains six other accessory properties, and by organizing into a vegetable worldom gains that of growth, reproduction, and life; and by organizing into an animal worldom acquires the additional properties of motion and mind, which are entirely extinguished when their organs decompose back into the simple elements and essential properties of matter. But a stultified priestcraft has absurdly attempted to separate the life, motion, and mind from the organs of man’s body, and out of it to build up a spiritual world with a God of the same materials.

By this jugglery of separating the properties of matter from matter, with a pretended Creator as King of Kings, it makes him the owner and giver of everything—of life, motion, mind, wants, rights, and morality; which takes them all away from man, though they are the inborn properties of his organs. This raises a pretence for incarnated Gods, prophets, Kings, Popes, and other subordinate gradations of political and religious priests, who have, by slandering man as depraved by nature, pretended that he must be redeemed by a thing called grace, and endowed with rights as the graciously divine gift of God, through his vicegerent kings, under the name of privileges.

Thus the dogma of godology becomes the focus from which radiates the entire system of vicegerency, dividing into political and religious officers, feudal and tenure lords, who, by their usurpations, assisted by the legislative power, have through all time governed, tyrannized, and monopolized all rights, both to the exercise and enjoyment of the properties of their organs and to most all property, particularly the soil, and thus have ruled by laws of alienation and monopoly; so that all their legislation only operates as general deeds of conveyance, conveying rights from the many to the few.

It seems that the more early conceptions of supernatural beings were that they existed in some material form, each wielding a particular element, and to whom men made offerings and sacrifices of vegetables and animals to obtain success in their adventures and conquests. The idea of a spiritual God or Heaven seems to have been an after or later thought, as man’s abstract or generalizing power of thought increased. The Hindoo theology, by classifying the gods with a trinity of powers under the names of Brahma the creator, Vishnu the preserver, and Siva the destroyer, with the first ideas of good and bad spiritual deities and worlds, which, by operating more powerfully on man’s passions, gradually radiated by commerce and emigration into all nations, and overran their older theologies. Thus, whoever concreted the legends of the Pentateuch, seems to have drawn a terrible God under the name of Jehovah, with the view of exterminating the surrounding idolatrous nations; for with his eyes of fire, and smoking nostrils breathing wrath and vengeance, with horned hands, destroying man with a flood, selecting a favorite people, ordering them to destroy the Amalekites and Canaanites, and to possess their lands, all suggest that this Jew-God may have been characterized after the model of the Hindoo God, Siva the destroyer.

But the Hindoo legend of the incarnations of Vishnu, by bringing the man-god Jezeus Chrishna nearer to man, aroused a more enthusiastic worship. Hence he is the most popular god of India, and, under the name of Buddha, of China and Japan; under that of Mithra in Persia; and under that of Chrishna in Egypt, where Herodotus found him worshiped by the Therapeuts, Ascetics, and Eclectics. But in time, somewhere about the Augustan age, a set of priests hashed up these Hindoo and Jewish theologies into a modified form of Christianity, as we find it in the New Testament. They changed the Hindoo trinity into Jehovah or Father, Jesus Christ or Son, and the Holy Ghost—the last a new creation in place of the evil one in the Hindoo trinity—leaving Satan out in the cold. But still at a later age Mahomet hatched out another form of religion, and seems to characterize his god Allah upon the model of the Hindoo Brahma as the only one great creating God of the Universe, himself as his prophet, and the Sultans as their vicegerents. Thus this Hindoo theology, with its modifications and additions, has become almost the prevailing religion of the world, running out and rendering obsolete the old theologies of Egypt, Chaldea, Greece, the Druids, &c.

The Convention should endeavor to ascertain whether the above sketch of the progress of godology is the truth or not. Then it should show up its evils and apply the remedy. The blood shed in the horrid sacrifices of beasts, and of man himself, in the many-god religions, seems not to have been much abated by the sacrifice or crucifixion of man-gods to atone for man. For the absurdity of its doctrines and rites are so contradictory of the obvious principles and facts of Nature, that devotees are continually splitting into wrangling sects; so that the more earnest they are in belief of the importance of man’s soul, the more inhuman they become in their persecutions of each other. Fanatic crusaders have destroyed themselves and others to secure the Jerusalem or Mecca tombs of their supposed gods. Religious wars have been waged thirty years about their gods, who never interfered to stop the horror. Inquisitions have sentenced poor wretches to the flames. Christian sects have massacred each other by thousands at the dead hour of night. Monster clergymen are yet preaching a hot Hell for unbelievers in their horrid creeds. They are all opposing, more or less, the progress of knowledge or free institutions around the globe. They are at this time ignorantly and presumptuously attempting to proselyte their modification of Christianity into the same people from whom they got it in part, at the expense of being exterminated, and yet neither party are aware how much their religions are alike.

With this slight tracery of the religious branch of sociology, hatched out of the absurd and impossible separation of life, motion, and mind from the organs of man’s body, we will sketch in another article the political branch of it.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) Oct. 10, 1870.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 2

Mr. Editor:—As a first number it was proposed that the Convention should begin its discussion by probing some of the antecedents and consequents in the chain of good and evil. Ignorance of the appearances in Nature made infant man first fear them, and then, conceiving the elements to be moved by invisible supernatural beings, sought to propitiate them by offerings, and brought additional evils upon himself. But at length he conceived the absurd idea of separating the properties of matter from matter, and made himself an imaginary supernatural world. Not heeding that matter, as it compounded in the mineral and organized into the vegetable and animal worldom, gradually developed higher properties, until those of life, growth, reproduction, voluntary motion, and sensation and mind were developed, and then all died with the decay of their respective organs, they stupidly supposed the mind a soul that separated from the body and joined the spiritual world and creative being. Thus a system of godology, with gods modeled from the acquired depravity and base passions of priests, conquerors, and Kings, with a graduated scale of vicegerents, under the name of man-gods or saviors, prophets, Kings, Popes, Bishops, &c., with their subordinates, down to tythe and tax collectors, became the focus from which radiated most of the evils which have cursed through all time the landless and producing masses of mankind with pauperism and crime, and both rich and poor with ignorance of the true nature of their rights.

Thus the dogma of godology, with the absurd pretence of separating the vitality, voluntary motion, sensation, mind or thoughts—the mere property of our organs—from them to form a spiritual world, takes away, also, with them the native and acquired morality or virtue of man, and pretends that it is given by the Holy Ghost through the agency of priests, and sold in the adulterated form of God’s grace in the Gospel-shops on earth, to poor, deluded Christians.—But not only is the morality of man claimed as thus sent from a heaven, but all of his rights to the exercise and enjoyment of the organs and properties of his body, and to land and other property, are pretended to be given him by Divine right of vicegerent Kings and other hereditary rulers, as slight privileges for the use of them only, while the allodium and sovereignty are claimed as being inherent in themselves.

Thus the right of man to the exercise and enjoyment of the property of vitality, developed by the vascular system, constituting the right to life; of the property of motion, developed by the muscular system, constituting the right to voluntary motion, labor, and liberty, and of the property of sensation and mind, developed by the nervous system, constituting the right to mind, opinion, franchise, or sovereignty, are all, in addition to a right to a share of the soil, impudently claimed as due to man only through the grace of God and Divine right of his vicegerents. But it is palpable that as man’s natural wants are the result of his organs and their properties, that his rights are the necessity for the exercise and enjoyment of them for the preservation of his existence. His natural wants being so nearly equal, his rights must also be equal; that as they are continued through life his rights must also be continued or inalienable, and that as they are personal or individual, so must his rights be isolated, individual, or separate from another’s. Thus, notwithstanding the inseparable condition of each man’s rights and their constituent principles with his organs, political and religious priests have separated them.

The dogma of a creator makes him the owner and giver of everything. So that it was the doctrine of the feudal system, and even up to the present, that God was the first great landlord and sovereign, while the King held the soil and government under him, the peers under the King, and the mass of the people, as serfs, under the Lords. But it is absurd for men to pretend to hold their rights and morality from each other, or Kings, priests, or Gods, for they can only hold them in themselves. As they cannot detach the properties of their organs from them to build up a spiritual world, so neither can they separate their rights and morals from them to erect a political world by the absurd pretence of delegating their sovereignty to so-called representatives. There is not a single distinct thing in the Universe that represents another. Men cannot eat, sleep, and reproduce for each other by proxy. Then why suppose any one property of our bodies can be represented any more than another? Every exertion of each man’s will is his own act, and not that of another. A so-called representative may exert a similar will to that of another, but it is his own identical will. The same principle of inalienableness might be applied to all the personal rights as to the homestead. As a man cannot own his own home by proxy, so neither can he own himself, nor exercise any of his personal rights by substitute, or delegate them. All rights must be enjoyed in proper person. This, then, requires that mankind by States must organize into townships, where all upon inalienable homesteads can produce and fabricate in proper person, with the power of self-employment; can equitably exchange their surplus products in town marts, and meet in town halls to discuss and vote directly for the law, without the intervention of officers, and thus form a truly landed democracy.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) Nov. 1, 1870.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 3

Mr. Editor:—It has now been stated how a religious and political priesthood has juggled the ignorant to believe that vitality or life, voluntary motion, sensation or mind, the mere property of their organs, together with the right to the exercise and enjoyment of them, have all come from a God; so that their chief business in the world is “to glorify and enjoy him forever,” out of gratitude for creating them such miserable, hell-bent wretches. So eager and presumptuous has this combined priesthood been to make a connection between this world and their imaginary Heaven, that the leading churches in Christendom have strained out an Apostolic succession from their Popes and Bishops back to St. Peter and Jesus, while their Kings have traced a bogus genealogy back to the Jewish Kings, as may be seen in old histories, ignored by Hume and Gibbon. But both Pope and King, Church and State, are still united under the same head in most of the nations of earth. They are united in the Emperors of China and Russia, Kings of England, Grand Lama of Thibet, Sultan of the Mohammedan empire, &c., with the Pope of Rome, just choked out of his temporal tyranny, while they are separated under different heads in Republican and Protestant countries, Japan, &c.

Though godology is thus united in most nations under a single head, yet it bifurcates or forks into State and Church, each with its gradation of superior and subordinate officers, living upon estates carved out of the sovereignty and religion or superstition of devotees, upon salaries wrung out of taxes ultimately paid by the producing laborer. Thus we see how both king and priest have created estates out of the properties of matter and man’s organs, as well as out of matter or soil itself. These non-producing parasites tax everything they can imagine, to juggle the ignorant out of the product of their toil.

Never was there such an urgency as now for all kinds of reformers to counsel together as to what must be done to remedy the growing evils of poor humanity. No matter how many parties and sects nations are divided into, they are still divided into the two great classes of producers and non-producers, of property-holders and rent-racked, hireling, and pauperized laborers; in short, divided into unconscious robbers and robbed. Neither rich nor poor, amid all the prodigality and destitution, crime and misery with which they are surrounded, seem to be aware of the enormous injustice of a non-producing class living in idleness by substituting their property for honest, productive labor; that the institutions of society are such that the possession of a few thousand dollars’ worth of property enables one to live without labor; that all the institutions of society are arranged to enable money to multiply money, property to accumulate property, and land and houses to swallow land and houses. Though the workers are the great majority, yet so many of them are so ignorant and dependent upon the holders of property as to side with their oppressors, and make it hard to carry reform. There is no hope of relief but by the landless intelligent endeavoring to induce the small property-holders to join them through fear of also becoming destitute. The owners of small means and of a competence must be aroused to see that the overwhelming wave of monopoly will also engulf them in pauperism. The larger capitalists compete down the lesser, and all conspire to reduce wages down to the point of starvation, with no hope of ever laying up any support for old age, or of escaping the poor-house prison.

Yet so great a portion of the laboring and poverty-stricken masses of France and Prussia have sided with the property and middle classes, that they have now become mere food for powder in fighting each other for a pair of black-hearted, ambitious monsters, to establish their dynasties and to continue the more permanent enslavement of themselves. Poor wretches! with so much bravery of heart, combined with so much cowardice of mind, the mere tools of their tyrants by fighting so much more bravely than they can think—helping to oppress their suffering brethren, the “International Association of Workingmen of Europe,” who aim to suppress monarchy, its interminable wars, and to make landed democracies of the United States of Europe. But instead, while these ignorant tools are fighting like tigers, the middle and upper classes look on in sympathy, with folded arms, along with the monarchs of Europe, while the two scoundrels are assassinating the liberties of the people, thinking they are securing them in their monopoly of nearly the whole land, and other property of the country.

The next number will refer to the plan of “nationalizing the lands” by the workingmen of Europe, and the plan of individualizing them by the “Land Reform Association” of the United States; to be followed next by a series of questions covering the whole system of reform; then, by a plan for a world’s exhibition, giving premiums for the best writings, in prose or verse, against all political and religious evils, with plans for the organization of society and government anew, together with models of all the gods, devils, monster conquerors, kings, and priests, with all their insignia, rites, &c., and then conclude with a series of hymns or songs.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) Nov. 8, 1870.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 4

Mr. Editor:—It has been stated that political, and religious priests have dogmatized the absurd belief that life, motion, sensation, and mind, the mere properties of the organs of man’s body, can separate from them and ascend to a spiritual world with a God as its figure-head, under the title of “King of Kings.” That in face of the glaring fact that there is nothing creative going on around us from which to infer a creation, but only a transformation of the elements of matter; yet this God is represented as having created all things. Thus they raise the pretence that he is the owner and giver of them all, and therefore gives man all his organs and properties, such as vitality, motion, mind, &c., so that all his rights and morality are supposed to come as his graciously divine gifts; and thus the dogma has been hatched that rights come from God through vicegerent kings to man, and morality through priests and pretended Saviours, in the adulterated form of piety or his saving grace, instead of being wholly the acquired attributes received from surrounding impressions upon man’s senses and organs. Thus the dogma of Godology forks or divides in most all nations into State and Church, with a vicegerent gradation of superior and inferior officers and landlords, grasping together all the power of ruling, and of nearly all the soil and the product of labor that can possibly be extorted from the necessities of the laborer.

Having thus touched upon the absurdity of pretending a spiritual world, and of representing a God as the owner and giver of all, we will next sketch out the true nature of rights and wrongs, by showing how they are originated, classified, and composed of certain essential principles; then examine the different plans of reformers, and then suggest what seems to be the most thorough remedy of evil, closing with a working Constitution applicable to any nation, and embracing a truer science of society.

But before proceeding with our chain of argument and system for the reconstruction of society and government, let us refer to the present status of reform in the world. We are now seeing how the agitation of the “International Workingmen’s Association” in Europe, to suppress thrones, wars, and standing armies, and the monopoly of the soil, with consequently nearly all the product of the starving and producing laborer, by an ignorantly selfish, non-producing aristocracy, has aroused a pair of wholesale murderers to hurl hosts of the working people against each other, with the view of thinning them out into the quietude of death. And it has resulted as yet only in putting an additional crown on the head of one, and the taking off and, perhaps, the crowning again of the other. We have beheld the superhuman and sublime struggle of the international workingmen of Paris against the monopolizers of all property and labor, to escape the pangs of starvation. But they are finding out that the only thorough remedy for their misery is in their natural right to a share of the soil in the form of equal, inalienable, and individual homesteads, subject to no liability to be alienated by sale, debt, tax, mortgage, and but only to be exchanged for each other, so that none can ever be without a home, the power of self-employment upon it, and of an independent vote and the power to retain and enjoy the whole product of their labor.

It is, then, against the agitation of a just reconstruction of society and States into townships or communes of landed democracies for local self-government, that the political and religious priests are now conspiring. The agitation of the people of England to suppress its incurable State and Church, has roused the State Church to endeavor to make common cause with the other Protestant churches to form a union, so as to continue swindling people out of their reason, to substitute their adulterated “grace” in place of the native virtue of the human heart, and to fleece them out of the product of their labor. One of these pious swindlers, living on false pretences, has been here now for several months, getting clergymen of various sects together at dinner-parties, urging a union upon a common platform, while still preserving “unity in diversity,” and are going to hold their first Œcumenical Council in Philadelphia this month. They will, of course, give it out as their aim to oppose the Catholic power. But as they are seeing that it has been the indulgence of private opinion that has created not only themselves, but also Infidelity, they will eventually be more inclined to make common cause with the Catholics against Free Inquirers, Free Religionists, Spiritualists, Unitarians, &c., if it ever should come to a contest of force, because they are all property-holders alike, and the selfish desire for plundered wealth is far stronger than that of the prejudice arising now from a difference in religious creeds.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) June. 10, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 5

Mr. Editor:—The proceedings of the clergy referred to in a previous article, for uniting on a common platform, should arouse the fears of the friends of freedom that the intention is to unite the vote of the different sects to legislate more Godology in the Constitution, in which the Catholics would join, to make Christianity the paramount law of the land for the suppression of all freedom of thought upon their charlatanic stuff, while political priests and the capitalists are leaguing together throughout Christendom to make the all-property producing classes starve quietly. It is the long-continued sufferings of the workmen of Europe that have roused them against those who have for generations plundered them of four-fifths of the product of their labor. But the erroneous form and institutions of society train both rich and poor in ignorance of their rights, so that reform but slowly progresses.

The misery of the working class on the older continents is also felt in this country. Branch associations of “Internationals” are forming in our large cities. In New York city there are ten. For some time a “Cosmopolitan Conference,” in imitation of those of political and religious priests, has held Sunday meetings, as well as the Internationals, with the object of calling on all persons having reformatory views to explain them for the discussion and instruction of the suffering people. But the most of them see no further into the thorough remedy for the oppression of the producing class, than that of strikes, benefit societies, equitable exchanges of labor for labor, trade unions of united capital, &c., overlooking the glaring fact, that while they remain tenants all they may save from the profitmongery of the capitalist and trader, by working even on their own capital, will be added to their rents by their landlords. They seem not to have attained to the knowledge that labor must be combined with a share of the soil in every person throughout the nation, giving the power of self-employment, before they can save from profitmongery the whole product of their labor and be able to give an independent vote in self-government; thus destroying the relation of landlord and tenant, capitalist and hireling slave, and officer and vassal voter, by voting directly for the law in proper person in township organizations.

It is disheartening, then, to see the narrowness of the views of our leading reformers, who fancy that they can by trick or stratagem undermine the present solid mass of erroneous institutions, by little labor leagues, labor or equitable exchange notes, little communistic property and free-love associations, pull down the present overwhelming system of the errors of society and government. But they must learn that it can only be done by creating a public sentiment that the thorough principles of natural wants and rights are those of equalness, inalienableness, and separateness. That no one should have the power of substituting monopolized property for honest labor—that soil should not absorb soil—and that no one should have the power to multiply money or other movable property by themselves, without adding to the property of society by means of a tribute paid by the robbed in the form of rent, interest, dividends, profits, taxes, tariffs, &c.

Alas! how hopeless it is for anything like an immediate reform for this almost incorrigible world, when there are, perhaps, not two dozen minds in it that comprehend the thorough principles of rights and wrongs. In political evil, such as Phillips, Powell, Sumner, Colfax, Mrs. Stanton, and others, seem not to see that there must be an entire reconstruction of society and government for a thorough remedy of evil, and hence can only prepare the way for others, being still in its ring. But such as Hugo, Rochefort, Blanque, Blanc, McCall, &c., in Europe, and such as Julian, Devyr, Hines, Ingalls, Davis, Foster, Mrs. Blackwell, &c., in America, see that labor must be combined with an inalienable homestead before pauperism, crime and misery can be abolished.

In religious evil, Beecher, Tilton, Abbott, Emerson, Frothingham, Mrs. Howe, and others, have only partially shed the exuvia of Godology, and are too much trammeled to do much in thorough reform; while Bradlaugh, Huxley, G. J. Holyoake, H. Seaver, B. F. Underwood, and Mesdames Rose and Slenker, among others, have thoroughly cast its skin, and can thoroughly abolish the evils of church, and it is hoped can appreciate the reconstruction of present society into landed democratical communes and states.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) June 17, 1871.

 


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 6

Mr. Editor:—The classification of rights and wrongs is more simple than that of all the other departments of Nature, and yet it is the least understood. Though they are the opposites of each other, and of course class in parallels, yet each of them classes only into two orders, into seven genera, and into some fifty species; while the mineral, vegetable, and animal forms of matter class into several hundred orders, upwards of ten thousand genera, and more than one hundred thousand known species. It is because mankind consists of but one species, with but five great systems of organs, giving rise to the same number of properties—those of form, life, reproduction, locomotion, and mind—that makes the science of society so simple. Rights and wrongs, then, consist of not only a few divisions, but call for no study of the exact ratio of the regular forms of architecture and sculpture in plastics, of the proportions of colors in chromatics, of notes in harmonics, and of equivalents in substances, sapon, &c., as required in artistic skill and taste.

As the whole body of Nature is but the composition of a few simple elements arranged according to a few plans of structure, it might be inferred from them alone that the individuals of each of the distinct departments of Nature would resemble in different degrees, and would be found grouped together and labelled by her. So much has Nature preserved the individuals of each worldom from chaos, by running a distinct character and principle through each genera, species, &c., that even the tools and machinery for manufacturing can be classed into them, as those for cutting, pressing, transporting things, &c. Is it, then, to be supposed that when all the lower forms of Nature are subjected to grouping, that the wants, rights, and duties with their opposites, cannot be also subjected to it?

The most known classification of rights and wrongs is that in Blackstone’s commentary on the laws of England—the lawyers’ Bible—and said to be based on that of his predecessor, Hale. As crude as it is, it is proof of the great advantage of methodical arrangement in aiding the memory and grasp of the subject. But next to the old Jew book, it is one of the greatest drag chains against the progress of reform and liberty. In the first place, he entirely ignores the three essential and constituent principles of a perfect right—those of equalness in quantity, inalienableness in time or duration, and of individuality by a thorough separateness. He is silent, also, on the necessity of these principles as a guarantee against their opposite wrongs of inequality, alienation, and commixture or communism of rights and property.

But he is equally deficient in enumerating all the rights, as he is in predicating their constituent principles. Instead of classifying rights as being founded on the properties of the five great systems of the organs of the human body, as those of manhood, life, reproduction, labor or self-employment, sovereignty or the power of self-government, a share of the soil, and the whole product of manual and mental labor, he only particularizes the rights of “life, liberty, and private property.” Under the vague and unmeaning word “liberty,” he only mentions the right of “locomotion,” entirely ignoring the right and duty of each human beings to his or her labor, sovereignty, natural right to a share of soil, power of self-employment, manhood suffrage, and the whole product of one’s toil. Notwithstanding all human being have a right to their will, reason, and private opinion, and, of course, the right of sovereignty in ruling; yet, while he objects to the Jura divino—divine right from God—he originates it in an oligarchy of hereditary kings and peers, with the domain and possession of nearly all the soil, guaranteed from alienation by any sale, debt, mortgage, or equal division among all the heirs, by the law of primogeniture and entail. Thus the King, and especially the peers, have the supreme power of Government in the House of Peers, with a pretended check by a House of Commons, always filled, also, with large property holders. In treating of the rights of persons, he employs a whole volume in treating about the King and his royal prerogatives, council, revenue, family, &c., with the titles and descents of the nobility, &c., and gives but little space to the privileges, as he calls them, of the people.

In his volume on the “Rights of Things,” he engenders the sentiment that inanimate property has rights, and capitalists are often heard to talk about their “property rights,” instead of their right to their property. As nothing but labor can produce property, and as scarcely any can accumulate by honest labor, of course all capital must be plundered from four-fifths of the product of labor, which continues to plunder in an accelerated ratio with its increase.

In his volume on public wrongs, he adopts Christianity as part of the law of the land, and classes foremost in the list of crimes in the penal code, Atheism and blasphemy, as crimes against God and religion, and punishable with the fagot and gibbet. These commentaries will preserve to posterity the political dogmas that curse mankind during the era of the inequality of rights and property, and it is hoped will be a sufficient scarecrow to keep it from degenerating back to its barbarism.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) June 30, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 7

Mr. Editor:—Believing that the true nature of rights, and the remedy of the evils of society, State and Church, cannot be thoroughly understood and applied without a natural classification of them, I hereby propose the following one for discussion by the Œcumenical Convention, whenever it may assemble.

In the previous number I have overhauled Blackstone, who seems to have ignorantly ignored the three constituent principles that must cooperate in the production of a perfect right, and must now propose an improvement upon his crude classification of rights and wrongs, and apply to them the first thorough declaration of their guaranteeing principles.

It is the numerous forms of the structure of the woody, growing, and reproductive organs in the vegetable, and of the bony, vascular, reproductive, muscular or locomotive, and nervous system of organs in the lower animal worldom, that constitute the foundation for their extensive classifications. But it is only the properties of form and shape, of vitality, of reproduction, of locomotion, and of sensation or mind, arising from these five great systems of organs, that become not only the true foundation of wants and rights, but also for the classification of them, along with their opposite wrongs, running parallel with them. See here, then, how few and simple are the divisions of this great worldom of the social relations, or of the rights and wrongs of man, in the following classification of them, though named in the ordinary words of our language, without jaw-breaking technicals. And remember, that no department of Nature can be said to be reduced to a science until its individuals are properly classified as Nature has already arranged them.

It is shameful that mankind have suffered for so many ages, (perhaps become several times almost extinct,) and yet have not been scourged into the true knowledge of their rights and wrongs—that the nabob and pauper generally, are equally ignorant of the deeply-seated causes of their evils.

Rights, then, with their wrongs, constitute one of the great departments or worldoms of Nature, and each consist of one class.

But as man’s body and the surrounding world embrace the whole system of Nature, they naturally and palpably divide rights and wrongs, each into two great order, to with: that of personalty, or the free exercise and enjoyment of his organs and their properties, with that of its opposing wrong, tyranny; and that of property, with its opposite wrong of monopoly.

As man’s body is compounded of five great systems of organs, the osseus, vascular, reproductive, muscular or locomotive, and nervous, giving rise respectively to the properties of form or shape, vitality, reproduction, locomotion, and sensation or mind, they divide the wants and rights of personlty into the five generic ones of manhood, life, reproduction, labor or production, and sovereignty, will, or the power of ruling, with their respective opposition evils or wrongs of mancipation or chattelhood, homicide, prostitution, servitude, usurpation, or office-holding and officiery.

Again, each of the above generic rights of personalty subdivide (in accordance with the different situations which each one may hold in society) into several species, with their wrongs.

Thus, the generic right of manhood subdivides into the species of self-ownership, citizenship, fraternity, &c., while its opposite wrong of mancipation subdivides into the specific wrongs of chattel-slavery, serfdom, peonage, &c.

Then the generic right of life subdivides into the specific rights to existence or personal security, self-protections, health, peace, locomotion, &c.; while its opposite generic wrong of homicide subdivides into the specific wrongs of murder, warfare, capital punishment, robbery, battery, nuisance, false imprisonment, &c.

Also, the generic right to reproduction subdivides into the specific rights to monogamy, parentage, stirpiculture, &c.; while its opposing generic wrong of prostitution subdivides into the specific wrongs of polygamy, polyandry, mutilation, and communogamy, (as in the Oneida communism.)

Also, the generic right to labor, or self-employment or production, subdivides into the specific rights to agriculture, mechanism, transportation, &c.; while its generic opposing wrong of servitude subdivides into the specific wrongs of bossery, hire and wages, journey-working, and of a non-producing capitalist employer.

Also the generic right to sovereignty, or to the ruling power, subdivides into the specific rights to education, opinion, conscience, speech, literature, invention, reputation, &c.; while its generic opposing form of usurpation or officiery, subdivides into the specific ones of ignorance, bigotry, persecution, slander, &c., with the great, outrageous political and religious wrongs of the viceregency of either hereditary, appointed, or elected office-holders.

But as the external world around man divides into immovable and movable things, the order of the right to property divides itself into the generic right to homestead and to products, while its opposition order of the wrong of monopoly divides into the opposing generic wrongs of landlordry and tenure, and profitmongery.

But again, the generic right to homestead subdivides into the specific rights of dwelling, manufactory or mechanic shop, town-hall, mart, &c.; while its opposite generic wrongs of landlordry and tenure subdivide into the specific wrongs of land-speculation, mortgage, rentage, sale, debt, tax, primogeniture, &c.

And again, the generic right to products subdivides into the specific rights to produce fabrics, money, exchange, carriage, &c.; while its generic wrong of profitmongery subdivides into the specific wrongs of forestalling, buying and selling for profit, interest, duties, peculation, credit, bill of credit, extortion, &c.

But in common with everything in the Universe, each one of this classified sketch of rights must be preserved and guaranteed by the cooperation of three great constituent principle of equality, inalienation, and individuality, being the quantitative, perpetuating, and potential principles that preserve all things in Nature. For as the natural wants of the properties arising from the organs of each human being are so nearly equal, as they endure through life, and as they are felt by each on in himself, so must the right to the instruments and material of their gratification be also equal or limited, inalienable or perpetual, and individual or separated. These principles must co-operate in the guarantee of both the rights to personalty and to property. Make rights ever so equal in quantity, they will soon become alienated, if not inalienable; and they will still become destroyed, if not held, exercised, and enjoyed in proper person, as individual, so as to be preserved from all commixture or communism, which thoroughly completes the destruction of rights. Thus, the three great constituent principles of a perfect right are those of equalness or limitation, of inalienableness or perpetuity, and of individuality or separateness, with their respective opposing wrongs of inequality, alienation, and communism or commixture of rights and property.

This system of classified rights and wrongs is proposed for the consideration of the Convention, and of all reformers; and if applied, will produce an entire reconstruction of society and government, wiping away the tears of humanity.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) July 6, 1871.

[We are unable to follow the request of our friend in regard to the type mentioned, as we unfortunately have not got the desired quantity in the office.—Ed. Inv.]


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 8

Mr. Editor:—Having in the previous article classified rights and wrongs, and declared their essential principles, I will now apply these principles to the remedial reconstruction of society and Government. By applying the remedy under the head of each right as it is classed, the Convention may discuss it in the same order more conveniently.

Before applying the remedy for the evils produced by the erroneous institutions of society and Government, the astounding fact must be comprehended, that rights have never yet, in any age or nation, been declared and established in accordance with the thorough principles of their equality, inalienableness, and individuality. Therefore all the rights of man, and the institutions of the moral world, are founded upon and swayed by the erroneous laws of their opposite evil principles of inequality, alienation, and commixture. Though all mankind are born with inherent wants, rights, duties, and virtue, yet they have never attained to the free exercise and enjoyment of them.

If mankind in their early existence had occupied only as much soil as each could cultivate, and governed themselves by a direct vote in making laws, there would have been, perhaps, a millennium by this time. But in their ignorance, leaving their Government to chiefs, the alienation and monopoly of their rights began. Chiefs soon became conquerors and kings by leagues of tribes. Political and religious priests thus arising, they imagined gods modelled upon themselves with all their vengeful passions, as exhibited in the imaginary wars of Moses and Joshua, and then claimed that all rights of soil, sovereignty, and virtue must come from those supernaturals through them as divine, to the people.

In this era of inequality see how every right to personalty and property is held by law of alienation and monopoly. A State and Church vicegerency, consisting of a graduated scale of superior and inferior officers, nobility, landlords, and capitalists, have and are absorbing the whole soil of the earth; reducing the working people to tenure, and extorting nearly the whole product of their toil; sacrificing millions in the carnage of war, merely to decide which tyrant shall rule them, while they are crushed down to the starvation point. Thus the landlord, trader, manufacturing and stock-holding capitalist, are monopolizing the soil and product of labor by driving the producers off the farms into the cities, to be rent-racked, to fester in filth, a prey to disease, crime, and pauperism. All this results from the fact that all institutions are founded in laws of alienation, and accounts for the practice that all legislation only operates as general deeds of conveyance, conveying away rights and property from the many to the few.

But, the application of the three great principles of equality, of inalienableness, and of individuality to man’s generic right to his vitality or life, with its species of the security of body, limb, health, peace, &c., would secure them from the generic wrong of homicide, with its species of murder, warfare, mayhem, capital punishment, &c. Thus the perpetuating principle applied to life, preserves it from destruction or forfeiture, except in the emergency of individual self-defense and in defensive war.—For the extinction of the property of life, the gift of the vital organs of the vascular system, is so irreparable and horrid, even when accidentally destroyed, that it becomes doubly horrible and the most heinous crime when maliciously taken. But the most terrible and criminal destruction of life is that perpetrated by aggressive warfare, by the infernal institution of hereditary kings, peers, or a so-called representative Republic, with a centralized power to conscript innocent victims, to keep standing armies, and to hurl millions of them against each other, merely for the depraved ambition of dynastic and military glory. But such will be the practice under the worship of, and until the dethronement of, the war-gods of the old Jew and Hindoo legends of Jehovah, Siva, and others, and their present imitators all over the earth.

But as there will still be the outrage of aggressive wars, they must be resisted by defensive ones. As all rights must be exercised equally, inalienably, and individually, all capable must defend the country in proper person, and not by a substitute. As society and Government must be organized into townships throughout a nation, those of the locality invaded must be the first to resist, while being reinforced every hour from adjoining ones. Thus it would be impossible for one nation to conquer another, unless their territories adjoined. Thus the whole people would be the standing army, instead of a hireling’s portion of them controlled by a usurper.

But a still more productive cause for the destruction of life is the monopoly of the soil and its products, by a non-producing class, from the landless and producing one. The natural right of every person to a share of the soil, as an inalienable homestead, is, by the monopoly of a few landlords, cut off from the stomach, leaving not enough of the product of labor to preserve from pauperism, the degrading alms-house, and the pangs of starvation. In the populous nations of Europe, the slow death from disease, destitution, and crime, is far greater than that of war. Ireland was more than decimated in one year for the want of each one to a share of the soil. Gangs of starving people in China are compelled to rave about and lay contributions on the towns to appease their hunger. And yet such is the shameful stupidity of both rich and poor, that they do not see that the remedy for this is the union of a share of the soil and other capital in the hands of the same, and not in separate ones.

But the application of the principles of equality, inalienableness, and individuality to man’s right to manhood, gives all the specific right to self-ownership, freedom, citizenship, &c., and protects them from the great wrong of chattel slavery, serfdom, peonage, &c. Making man’s body a chattel is the next most heinous crime to that of murder. The living, breathing form of man should be the owner of property, not made the same as inanimate things. To be free, man must have an equal share of homestead as well as manhood. But they would soon become unequal if not protected by the perpetuating principle, and would still become destroyed if they do not individualize and avoid the communitizing of body and manhood with that of others.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) July 13, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 9

Mr. Editor:—Having shown in the previous number how society and Government become reorganized by the application of the principles of equality, inalienation, and individuality to the right to life and manhood, I will now show how they also reconstruct the right to the matrimonial relation of the sexes.

There seems to be as great a conflict of opinion upon this as on the other institutions of society, as to the true principles on which it should be founded, and it should receive the profound consideration of the Convention. The equality in the number and natural wants of the sexes proclaims the equalness of all their rights, and requires the pairing of them only, as in monogamy. It demands that the wedded should be equal in race, condition, intellectual and moral qualities; that each should be self-owned, free-willed, and irresponsible for the deeds of each other.

But the equalness and independence of the matrimonial relation will become destroyed unless it is backed up by the cooperation of the great principle of perpetuity, to preserve it from divorce or any mode of alienation. Like all the other properties of man’s organs, and the rights founded on them, the procreative power and rights should not be violated by any of the species of prostitution. Of course, it is an outrageous violation of the principle to mutilate.—There can be no exchange of the properties or rights of personality. It is only property that can be exchanged, as homesteads for homesteads, and products for products—but no exchange of husbands and wives.

But both the equalness and perpetuity of the matrimonial relation will become alienated, if not guaranteed by the cooperation of the individuality of the right, from polygamy, polyandry, commonogamy &c. Owing to the erroneous dogma of the communism of rights and property, engendered by mistaken but well-meaning reformers, there is much confusion of sentiment, by both men and women, as to the proper form of the connubial relation. From the common-property dogma they are generalizing to a free-love community of husbands and wives.

But the universal principle of individuality or of separateness points out the true form of marriage. As the application of the individual system of society requires that the women must have their share of homestead and product of their toil, as well as men, the whole earth must be divided into square tracts of land, bounded by lines running with the cardinal points, for homesteads. These homesteads, as the population increases, should be divided down to ten acres as the minimum of a family support. Each male and female, as they become of age, is entitled to one-half of each one of these as a homestead. Their dwellings, shops, and barns to be built with a partition wall dividing them into two equal halves, upon a line dividing, also, the land into equal halves of five acres; and with the double purpose of keeping as equally distant as possible from those of their neighbors, and also with the view that the right-band side of these premises fronting the East shall be the property of the husband, and the left-hand side, that of the wife. As the male or female after wedding vacates his or her right to a heritage in the parental homestead, it leaves them for other members of the family. The homesteads of those leaving no children or other relatives, will become the property, according to age, of any not provided for in the larger families. But when the soil, with the most improved cultivation, will support no more population, physiological laws must be introduced to prevent its increase. The double structure of the one and a half-story dwelling, with sheds running back, and a door through the partition that can be closed, is for the purpose of preserving the individual rights and independence of the wife from the tyranny of the husband, and the slavery of rearing too many children. By these means the mother can retire from the father with a portion of the children, and still have the neighborly care and mutual aid of each other on the farm or in the shop. But the subject of farming and manufacture will be fully treated under the rights to homesteads and products, in future numbers.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) July 23, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 10

Mr. Editor:—The next right of personalty in order, is that of labor or production, which is handicraft and skill, transforming matter beyond what Nature has transmuted, for man’s subsistence. Its instrument is the muscular organs pulling upon the leverage of the jointed bones under the direction of the mind, and no one has more of it than what is needful for sustenance and recreation.

The principle of equalness, applied to labor, indicates that as every person’s natural wants for food, clothing, and shelter are so nearly equal, their right and duty to produce are also equal. As each one’s productive powers, with the proper healthy enjoyment, are only equal to the supply of his or her natural wants, all who are robbed of a portion of the product of their labor become overworked and destitute. But as every one’s power to produce is more limited in variety than their wants, their surplus products of one article give rise in their exchange to commerce and society. This equalness, though, of natural wants, productive powers, and specialty to produce more than needed of one thing, requires an equal access to the raw materials of Nature. Without a share of the soil, giving the power of self-employment, none can secure the whole product of their labor; for it nearly all goes to pay rent, interest, and profitmongery on monopolized lands, houses, and other necessaries of living. As nothing but labor can produce property, it is most outrageously unjust that property should be allowed to add other property to itself without creating any more of it in society.

But this principle of the equalness of the quantity of the right to labor and land, will ever become monopolized unless they are backed up and guaranteed by the co-operating principle of time, duration, or perpetuity. If the equalness of the quantity of production must be equivalent to the natural wants, so must the inalienation or inalienableness of them continue during life. It preserves labor from alienation by a boss capitalist, in the form of hire and wages. If a man’s body and life cannot be enslaved, sold, or hired for soldiering, so neither can the sinews and muscles be hired by a capitalist, who is only a master in another form to those who claim man as a chattel.

There is no possible way to guarantee four-fifths or more of the product of labor from being alienated to pile up the wealth of idle and bloated nabobs, than that of combining labor with a share of the soil and other capital in every one alike. This gives the ennobling power and stimulates to exertion and duty—the independent power of self-employment and self-government of a landed democracy. All labor or production should be performed in proper person in field, shop, or store, and only the product exchanged, according to the time of cost in labor, with material added. In building a house on another’s land by contract, the principle of self-employment would not be violated any more than in one’s own shop, and would not be hireage. As there may be an exchange of homesteads for homesteads, and products for products, so may there be an exchange of equal labor for labor, but never for money, which changes its value and runs into abuse.

But to the right and duty of every one to labor or produce equally and inalienably, must be that of producing individually and separately. Labor cannot be communitized without running into abuse and tyranny. Man wants the independent power of self-direction and self-employment. Dependence upon others destroys too much stimulus to exertion and shifts responsibility upon others.

It is the saving of certain kinds of labor and the manufacturing of machinery that seems to lead to the error of the communism of property and labor, and to the sentiment that that is the natural form of society. Reformers, urging the communitizing and nationalizing principle of rights and property, seem to overlook the fact that nine-tenths of labor and production are agricultural and mechanical, and also performed with small and ordinary tools—leaving only the other tenth, perhaps, to be done by machinery. They seem to plan reform so much upon it, that it shows they think machine-labor everything. Hence, they plan large palaces to keep the communists together to annoy and infect the whole. This plan tends to the employment of officers or managers, which put their sovereignty or power of self-government into a state of alienation and monopoly.

But the principle of individuality of rights and property makes each man and woman an equal and independent owner of an individual homestead, with the sublime liberty of self-direction, self-employment, and self-government. All thus living, working, and seeking happiness upon their own hooks and homesteads, will be powerfully emulous to practice their duties towards themselves and society.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) July 30, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 11

Mr. Editor:—Having shown in previous numbers how all the rights to life, manhood, marriage, and labor are reconstructed by the cooperation of the constituent principles of equalness, inalienation, and individuality, they must now be applied to reconstruct the remaining right to personalty—that of sovereignty, or the power of governing.

The application of the law of equality to sovereignty entitles every adult human being, without regard to race, sex, or any other condition of life, to an equal share in voting and ruling. It is the equalness of the natural want of volition arising from the mind, the property of the nervous system—not the quantity of ideas—upon which is founded the equality of each one’s share in governing. It is absurd to suppose that in a community where all share in virtue, as well as small vices, that the selection of a few from among them can enact laws better and more disinterestedly than the whole number of the people, not too numerous to meet in township divisions. The creation of offices and officers so demoralizes them that they become a mere incorporated company, standing apart from the people and assuming exclusive privileges and honors. Thus the equal right of all to the exercise and enjoyment of government is violated by the evil principle of officiery, or the monopoly of the sovereignty by the few. The whole number of officers in a State or church share between them the monopoly of the people’s sovereignty, as much as all the landlords share that of the soil, the masters have that of their slaves, and the capitalist employers have the monopoly of the labor of their hireling slaves. Thus the inequality of monopolized sovereignty or power of governing violates its equality.

Notwithstanding the equalness of the natural want in all for volition is the true foundation for the equality of the franchise, or rather of voting in proper person direct for the law, yet wealth-trained ignorance is ever founding it in some adventitious condition of life. Thus they found its equality and draw the right of voting and ruling from race, sex, color, intelligence, residence, majorities, compacts, laws, wealth, inheritance, divinity, &c. They look everywhere but to the natural and equal want of every one, for food, clothing, and shelter. The aristocracy might with as much reason originate the equalness of the right of sovereignty in their big toes.

But as the equality of the right of sovereignty becomes thus violated by its opposite of inequality, or of its monopoly by a separate class of officers from that of the people, it must be backed up and guaranteed by applying the timeal or perpetuating principle of inalienation. As the natural want of volition in the exercise of sovereignty in each person is not only equal, but also enduring for life, so must the right to a share of the power of directing the affairs of society and government be also equally enduring or inalienable.

As all the institutions of society, government, and property are founded upon the laws of their universal alienation and monopoly, of course none of mankind have yet attained to the exercise of either their equal, inalienable, or individual rights. Hence, even the monopolizers of rights are not guaranteed and secured in that portion of them which is justly their share. The Emperor may lose his share of sovereignty equally with each one of the people. The millionaire is not secure in even that portion of his wealth which would fall to his share. For the principle of inalienation has never yet been declared and established as the foundation of the laws and institutions of nations.

As, then, the sovereignty of the people is destroyed by the laws of alienation and monopoly, it is an absurd dogma that it remains with them, and that they only delegate it to a representative. In selecting by vote candidates to office, we only give the consent of a vassal to his lord, who has already a usurped estate in his sovereignty. We exercise no more power of ruling by voting for officers, than we get the title to a homestead by selecting and renting a tenement from among those of several landlords. Officers, then, are not representatives, tenants, and hirelings, but the lords and masters of the people, living upon salaries, which are estates in their sovereignty, and are paid out of their productive toil. But rulers and priests, through all ages, to strengthen their usurpation of the people’s sovereignty, have forged gods after their own images and pretended to rule by divine right from their godships.

But the first agitation against this universal usurpation and centralization of sovereignty, and all other rights, is now commenced by the “International Workingmen’s Associations” of Europe, Asia, and America. They have already aroused the monster butchers, Napoleon, William, Bismarck, Thiers, and others of their satellites, in an attempt to crush them out, but, it is hoped, in vain. And yet the scoundrels walk the earth amid the plaudits of those who rob and starve the most valuable portion of mankind—the producing masses.

But although the right of sovereignty may have the principle of equality and inalienation applied to it, giving all an equal and direct vote for the law without the intervention of an officer, through organized townships or communes, yet it can still be destroyed by the evil principles of commixture or communism, unless fortified by the saving principle of individuality or separateness. The sovereignty of the people through all ages has been equally violated by communism as by inequality and alienation.—Political parties and theological sects agreeing in the dogmas of charters and creeds, constitute a thorough communism of ideas, far beyond what has occurred in any of the other rights. The imprisonment of the ideas in a party or sect prevents the progress of knowledge, and stimulates the most reckless bigotry, slander, persecution, war, and crime. And if parties and sects did not check and neutralize each other, the world would be a far worse hell than it is.—How great, then, would the evils of a communism of the ownership of the lives, bodies, procreations, and labor become, as that of the communism of ideas, wills, consciences, &c., has produced such terrible evils! Thus mankind have experienced the curse of erroneous ideas, communitized in creeds and articles of faith. But when truth becomes thoroughly established they will neither agree nor differ enough to tie up their minds in creeds and platforms. Hence there will be only an individualizing of ideas and platforms.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Aug. 12, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 12

Mr. Editor:—The attention of the Convention is now called to the second important order of rights with their opposite wrongs, which order is that of property with its opposing wrong of monopoly. The right to property, or each human being’s share of soil with the whole product of his or her labor, naturally divides into two genera of Homestead and Products, with their opposing wrongs of landlordry and tenure, and of profitmongery; and these again subdivide into a greater number of species, not necessary to refer to in this sketch. The right to property in the Homestead is the only real solid foundation upon which the five great personal rights heretofore sketched, can be guaranteed against destruction. For man’s organs, with their properties of life, motion, and sensation or mind, exist only through their intimate connection with the soil, appurtenant elements, and products. But the inseparable connection and dependence of all our natural wants and rights upon each other, declare that the constituent principles or laws of a thorough and perfect right, are those of equality, inalienation, and individuality. To give a clearer conception what each of these principles effects in the reconstruction of the right to homestead, let them be here applied separately, and first to

Equal Homestead.

As each person’s natural wants and producing powers are so nearly equal, they entitle all to an equal share of the soil, appurtenant elements, and the whole product of their labor.—The equivalent qualities in which the elements of matter combine, are still employed by Nature in combining and proportioning rights to wants. Without this principle of equivalence or equality in quantity, Nature would not have been able to have kept her individuals from an indistinguishable chaos. She employs it in precise ratios, not only in combining substances, but in the proportions of the regular bodies, in architecture, colors, musical sounds, &c.

The equalness, then, of each one’s natural wants for light, warmth, air, water, food, clothing, and shelter, is the true foundation and necessity for an equal share of homestead. Wreck a ship’s crew upon an unowned and desolate island, and how outrageous it would seem for one, or part of them, to claim the whole of its soil! Yet most all the soil in all so-called civilized nations is monopolized by conquest, inheritance, speculation, purchase, mortgage, &c., by those who claim for the use of it a great portion of the landless toilers’ labor, without producing anything themselves. So fatally are men’s minds shaped by the form of the institutions around them, that they are not yet startled and horrified at the immense rapidity with which land is swallowing land, and money and other products multiply themselves without any increase of production.

The true measure for the size of an equal homestead must be determined by what the natural wants require for a family support, and as much as each can cultivate with proper recreation. Where population is sparse, each family might be allotted one hundred and sixty acres, then be quartered into forty acres, and again quartered down to the minimum of ten acre homesteads, as an increase of heirs, &c., demanded. And when the earth can feed no more, the laws of physiology will have to keep the race at a stand. When the earth becomes thus crowded with its complement of inhabitants, and all, whether farming, manufacturing, or transporting, must own equally their ten acre homes, the whole earth will become a continued rural city, with only public marts and halls in the centre of each township or commune. As the present land monopoly, which is driving the rural population to crowd the tenements of their monopolizers in too large cities, must cease, the larger portion will fall into ruins. The costly horse-power, which requires as much soil to feed him as a man, must go out of use with other animals, as in China. Costly fences will not, except along roads be needed. Gravelled paths, with rows of fruit-trees, will run around each farm and across the middle, &c., of them. The wife will have the ownership of half the farm and buildings, as the husband has, and can retire thereon. But although man’s natural wants and rights to equal homestead should also embrace that of the principle of inalienable homesteads, yet such is the quibbling character of man’s reasoning, that he would soon abuse it.—Therefore the principle of equality must be backed up by the equally important one of

Inalienable Homestead.

But as natural wants are not only equal, but are also continued through life, they become the true foundation, also, of inalienable Homestead. As the principle, too, of time or duration is very different from that of magnitude or quantity, it becomes a distinct constituent of a thorough right, and is equally essential to its existence.—The limitation or equalness then, of each one’s natural right to a share of the soil, will become alienated or destroyed without the application of the guaranteeing principle of inalienation, perpetuity or imprescription, that attaches it to the person throughout life. The principle of equal Homesteads alone would run into the abuse of allowing a man to alienate his Homestead to a landless man, and thereby make himself landless. But it must be made a felony to withhold a home from any person, or for any to part with it, except in exchange for another. The Homestead, then must not be exchanged for money or other moveables, which will waste or evaporate through improvidence. Land must be exchanged only for land, and products for products. The Homestead, then, which embraces the improvements as well as the soil, must never be subject to any liability to alienate for any consideration whatever, such as that of sale, debt, tax, mortgage, primogeniture, &c. The exchange of Homesteads is only proper for the necessary freedom of emigration. No one, then, must ever be found without a Homestead. For nothing else will insure the protection of life from pauperism or starvation, the power of self-ownership, self-employment, and self-government to the latest posterity.

It is deplorable to see the heedless ignorance of the producing masses of the liberty-giving power of inalienable Homestead and sovereignty. Not seeing the power of the principle that makes a home stay with them, and seeing that the bill of credit system and debt into which the wily, speculating trader leads them—that it stays with them no longer than moveable property—they become trained to appreciate it no more than money. Not seeing that all the institutions of society and government are really founded upon the evil principle of the alienation and monopoly of property and other rights, they risk their little means in trading or manufacturing in competition with the millionaire capitalist, instead of investing it in the soil and in aiding to make his Homestead inalienable—exempted from all alienation or forfeiture.

But while the great body of the people have been holding their small possessions by the alienating laws of monopoly, or of their transitory ownership, the glaring fact and precedent has been blazing in their faces, that the royalty and nobility of the world have preserved their families and titles, their thrones and estates, from alienation, by exempting them from sale, debt, tax, mortgage, &c. And yet, these masses of the people have not yet learned to agitate for having the same laws applied to their smaller possessions; but instead, have ever practiced the trafficking of their homes to large adjoining or other monopolizing capitalists, and thus have aided in the monopoly of the soil, instead of its distribution among the producing people.

But this cunning royalty and peerage have only applied the principle of perpetuity and individuality to their thrones and manorial estates, and omitted the application of that of equalness. For, to perpetuate their families, titles, estates, and powers of ruling, they have applied the law of primogeniture and entail, so as to make the whole descend to the oldest male heir, and if none, to the oldest female (with exceptions,) with the hereditary power of a peerage, forming a branch of the Government as in the House of Peers. And now the working of this peerage is seen, in “a house of incurables,” who, as bandits and robbers, kick and riot against every reform of abuses. With their immense plunderings, passage of “acts of enclosure” of the common lands of the people, and by purchasing all the smaller possessions around to add to their parks, manors, and hunting-grounds, they are driving the working people into poorhouse prisons, and into cities to fester in dirt, pauperism, disease and crime. Then this monster, so-called nobility, creates sinecure offices and pensions the disinherited members of the family. Thus the oldest member of the family inherits all, and then quarters the rest upon huge salaries paid out of immense taxes extorted from the toil of the producing laborer down to the point of starvation. And all this is borne by the ignorance of the people, while “Heaven looks on without taking their part.”

Thus this Homestead exemption applied by the aristocracy of the Old World to their Homesteads and sovereignty, must also be applied to those of the whole people. Let bands of agitators go around in every town in a State or nation, and rousing others, urge all the smaller holders of property in farms to hold them as exempted and inalienable while larger owners divide among their heirs, and thus much of the soil will become equalized. Let the smaller owners of houses in cities in the meantime sell out and buy farms between the maximum and minimum size, and erect shops and manufacture on their Homesteads, and divide their labors in mechanism as well as cultivation. There will remain then the large holders of the soil, who should be required, after giving the proper share to heirs, to sell out what balance may be left to landless persons only, to be so done after death. But until all can be converted to these thorough principles of rights, and until a sufficiency of public sentiment can be created to form a constitution, all must pledge their “lives, their fortunes, and sacred honor,” to not sell out to any monopolizer of the soil. Thus equal, inalienable, and individual Homestead, life, labor, and sovereignty may be established among mankind without arousing the prejudices against the agrarian division of property.

As all the institutions and governments of all nations are but a system of legalized robbery of nearly all the soil and product of the producing laborer, let the people no longer struggle for their right to homes and to their labor by endeavoring to induce the so-called representatives, who only legislate for property-holders, to grant homes, but to ignore them entirely, and with their sovereignty in their hands, vote by townships for a constitution thoroughly reconstructing them in their rights. This they can do in accordance with the doctrine of Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence, which declares that when governments refuse to confirm to the people their natural rights, it is their right and duty to abolish them and establish liberty-guaranteeing ones.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Oct. 9, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 13

Mr. Editor:—Having in the previous number sketched out the principles of equal and inalienable Homestead, and applied them to the thorough reconstruction of society and government, as suggestions for the Convention, we must now sketch the third and remaining principle necessary to the completion of a thorough right, which is that of

Individual Homestead.

Though Homesteads may be equalized by the principle of equality or limitation, though they may be guaranteed by the principle of inalienation from debt, sale, or any other mode of alienation, yet if they are not still further fortified by the co-operation of the principle of individuality or separateness, they will still be liable to alienation by the opposite evil principle of commixture or communism.

The fact that society is not a concrete, but a discrete mass of beings—separated into individuals—is enough upon the face of it to make it self-evident that property must be owned separately by individuals, and not in communized bodies, as the true principle. Nature throughout all her domain seems to keep all her bodies separate and distinct from each other, while preserving resembling kinships and intimate connections with the surrounding world. Without this the world would only be a chaos of confused and indistinguishable mass of objects, and this would be the case with wants and rights in communism.

The individual ownership of the soil has been the most potent civilizer of man. No one has been stimulated much to plant or to build where another could reap the whole fruit of his enterprise and labor. But when individual ownership was secured, though very imperfectly, man more rapidly advanced in the arts and comforts of life, and in an approach to civilization. Yet there has arisen a class of reformers who have so mistook the cause of social evil as to ascribe it to individual ownership, instead of to the individual monopoly of property and right. They have mistaken the competition arising from large capital, to the individual ownership of it. Hence they infer that the sentiment of mine and thine must be destroyed, and replaced by that of the communism of all things, Robert Owen urged reform upon this error, and seems to have embraced it from the labor-saving power of machinery, which in truth will never be extended to but a small part of hand labor. For nine-tenths of labor is agricultural and mechanical, and done with ordinary hand tools, as must be the case when population will only give about ten acres for a family. But it must have its run like all other specious errors. But our International brethren of Europe seem to be adopting a very modified form of commune to that of Owen, first suggested by Bronterre O’ Brien. It is that of

Nationalizing the Lands.

This plan proposes that all the lands of the nation should be held in trust by Government for the use of every one of the people. A small rent as a tax is to be paid for the support of the Government. This still keeps up a huge system of non-producing officers, living upon a graduated scale of salaries, which are nothing but estates carved out of the sovereignty of the people, and who are besides a huge corporation of landlords. It keeps up still a class of so-called representatives, placed in different circumstances than the people, that will continually make pretences to raise these rent-taxes to carry on wars, &c. The principles developed in the previous numbers require every right, personal and property, to be held, owned, exercised and enjoyed in proper person, and not in trust, by proxy, substitute, or by a so-called representative. Thus the erroneous institutions of General and hired soldier, of master and chattel slave, also, of polygamist and concubine, of boss and hired laborer, of officer and vassal voter, of landlord and tenant, and of creditor and borrower, are all destroyed by the scientific organization of rights. To enable mankind to exterminate these liberty-destroying curses, they must organize the whole State or nation into townships and communes of the proper size, where all upon exempted homes have the power of self-employment, self-ownership, and the sublime liberty of self-direction and government, by meeting in town hall, and with a moderator and a few professional secretaries, clerks, or book-keepers, can discuss and vote directly in proper person for the very little law needed when all shall thus attain to their rights.

It was George H. Evans who most prominently conceived and agitated man’s natural right to soil. But the writer of this article claims the classing together of the three principles of equality, inalienation, and individuality as the constituents of a thorough right. And he claims further, the generalizing of them to the personal rights to life, manhood, procreation, locomotion, labor, and sovereignty, as well as the rights to all Homestead and Products, together with a more complete classification of rights.

The only one among the leaders of the “Internationals” in the late patriotic struggle of the French communes, so far as I have noticed, who declared for voting direct for the law without the intervention of the so-called legislators, is M. Henri Rochefort, or at least it was so declared in his paper. Alas! what hope is there for suffering humanity when so few of us have gotten but a peep at the thorough principles of rights and wrongs? We are yet divided in opinion which of the two principles of individuality or the communism of rights, property, and labor, is the right one. But let it be no cause for schism, as all are coming to see that the natural right to a home on the soil is the bottom foundation of thorough liberty. The true principle can be ascertained by the people in some of the townships communizing the whole of their soil and labor, and of crowding and jostling in a single splendid palace, and having their employments assigned them by superintendents, a mere modification of masters, with too little stimulus to duty—while the people in other townships may prove the individualizing system upon equal, inalienable, and individual farms, shops, and parks, all combined, while dwelling in embowered cottages. Here, each one having the same means, will be responsible alone for shirking duty, and will emulate in the improvement of his or her premises. In this way the truth of the individual or communal principle may be settled. But I have reasoned myself into the belief that the individual principle is the true one, and regret to see how the belief in communism eclipses the brain from seeing the light shed by the individuality of rights, wants, and property.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Oct. 16, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 14

Mr. Editor:—The second genus of the second order of man’s rights, which is that of property, is that of Products or productions, being the result of the soil, of labor, and skill. The right to Products, in common with all the other rights, is founded upon the equalness, perpetuity, and individuality of all the natural wants and productive powers. Products, embracing all moveable things, should be treated, as well as the soil, under the head of each one of its three constituent principles, as first,

Equal Products.

The application of the principle of equality or equalness of quantity to the right to the products of the soil, of labor, and skill, is founded upon the fact that each human being’s natural wants and productive powers, with the needful recreation, are so nearly the same that it determines the right of all to the whole product of their labor and skill to be the same. What a great outrage, then, it must be, to make mere inanimate monopolized soil and other property extort for the use of them more than four-fifths of the product of labor, and in some countries nearly all of it! The injustice of it is enough to make even the skies blacken with indignation.

Not only landlordry with its enormous rents, not only State and Church with their extravagant taxation, fees, salaries, and contributions, but the bad economy of the distribution of products, by a series of middle-men with their useless profitmongery, are all combined in the extortion of nearly all the product of the laborer, and are reducing him to pauperism and the poor-house prisons in the older countries. And all the local little puerile attempts at cooperation in trade-unions will be of no avail, for the overwhelming system of monopoly of capital and landlordry around them will only add all they may save to the rents of the landlords, and to the profits of the profitmongers. Nothing short, therefore, of the self-employment of labor upon equal homesteads, can secure the equal products of the laborer in organized townships, with marts for the equitable exchange of products for products according to the time of labor and material added in their production.

Inalienable Products.

But as the natural wants for the whole product of one’s labor are not only equal in quantity, but also enduring or perpetual throughout each one’s life, the right to it must also be inalienable. As homesteads can only be exchanged for each other according to their natural value of soil and improvements, so, also, products can only be exchanged for each other according to the time of labor and value of material in their production. But homesteads and products must never be exchanged for each other. Products may also be exchanged for a common and metallic currency, having an intrinsic value, but not for anything in the form of a bill of credit. The bill of credit and the credit system are the most effective instruments for the alienation of property, whereby one person gets the use of another’s property, and through improvidence or dishonesty cheats his creditor, and in case of guaranteeing by pledges or mortgage, becomes the loser by bad management.

Thus the continuance of each one’s natural wants and producing power during life, demands that all should be guaranteed in a share of the soil as inalienable; so that having the power of self-employment, he cannot be forced “to beg a fellow-worm for leave to toil.” For it is impossible to work as a hireling without losing a portion of the profit of labor upon another’s soil.—When working on one’s own land, Nature gives her donations in sunshine, in rain, in carbonic acid, and in earths, in aid of the toiler. Instead of being on the soil, the great mass of the only valuable populations of the Old World is huddled into small cot villages, depending upon the farmers around to get work only on clear days, or crammed in the narrow lanes and slums of the large cities, to be rent-racked, pauperized, degraded, and sent to poor-house prisons.

Thus the right of the producer to inalienable products is completely alienated, as well as that to soil and every personal right of life, manhood, labor, suffrage, or rather sovereignty. But there is another process by which the producing masses are robbed of their right to the whole product of their labor in addition. It is the bad economy by which the products of consumption are distributed. Instead of all upon inalienable homesteads in organized township-marts producing all the necessaries of life, which every climate enables all to do, and by equitably exchanging them according to time of labor without profitmongery, we behold the soil sterilized in certain regions by the raising of too much of one kind of crop—giving rise to half-a-dozen of freightages, cartages, and stealings on ship and railroad lines, and then on reaching the cities, the profit-mongers of another half-a-dozen traders are added, all paid by the consumer and settling down upon the laborer, who foots the bill of all the expenses of society with eight or nine-tenths of his labor.

Individual Products.

Thus products are not only taken away from the producers by all not producing equally in quantity and continually through life; but by laboring and owning in communism they destroy both the rights to labor and property, and all stimulus to duty and enterprise. The sublime freedom of self-direction, and of mine and thine, must not be destroyed. Man will never attain his rights but through a bright sentiment of what is his right and that of his neighbor. The communism of labor and products will be attended with too much offensive superintendence—a modified form of master and slave at variance with the sublime freedom of self-direction—and this practice of communism in labor and property will become generalized to the sexual relation.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Nov. 16, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 15

Mr. Editor:—Having sketched man’s natural rights as all founded upon natural wants, as equal, inalienable, and individual; having declared that man should hold, exercise, and enjoy his personal rights, or rights to the properties of his body, together with his right to property in the external world, to a share of the soil and to moveable things, or products, as the whole product of his labor, we will now make some general reference to all the rights, as suggestions to the Convention, and for the reconstruction of society and government.

I have been declaring in these series of numbers that the whole political and moral world, with all its institutions of society and government, are founded and ruled by laws of the alienation and monopoly of all rights, and therefore cannot be redeemed but by the establishment of all rights upon the opposite principle of their equality, inalienation, and individuality. It is in vain, then, that mankind, the working and valuable portion of them, can ever attain to their rights by attempts at patching up the present form of society and government. The removal of abuses will only be temporary, while their deeply-rooted causes and evil principles remain. The alienation, usurpation, and monopoly of the rights of the people first engendered conquerors, kings, and priests. These yet unfossilized monsters of mankind have ignorantly imagined a system of spiritual godology, and have so ignorantized themselves and the laboring masses, that they have through all ages, with their various gods upon their banners, been hurling millions of innocent people of different and the same nations in murderous warfare for the dynasty of themselves and gods. And still, notwithstanding the advancing light of the 19th century, behold a superannuated priest pretending the “infallibility” of a humbugging church, and a butcher William, after suppressing another butcher, Napoleon, is now claiming to rule by the “divine right” of his imagined God. He is now conspiring with the other diabolical nuisances of Europe to suppress the only valuable, and yet starving, international workingmen of his and all the surrounding nations.

I do hope Messrs. Bradlaugh, Marx, and others of the General Committee of the “International Workingmen’s Association” of Europe, who seem to entertain, in part similar views, but who may still be overlooking some points brought out in these essays, will give them their careful attention. Let us all compare ideas, and if possible, get up a Constitution for all nations, declaring and establishing the thorough principle of rights and wrongs, and that will entirely reconstruct society and all its institutions. I am disgusted to see how many revolutions, what a waste of suffering humanity, it requires to establish only the fractional part of a principle. I believe our international workingmen of Europe, and all the world, had better cease struggling to attain their rights by the election of the so-called representatives, the majority of whom will ever be chosen from among the property-holders, and who will knowingly, and even unconsciously, legislate for property and class—not for the pauperized and starving people. For men of true genius and philanthropy, that can rise above the influences around them, are so scarce that there will never be but two or three found in a legislative body. Let, therefore, as many radicals as can assemble in London, from Europe, who can see that rights are founded on natural wants, and are equal, inalienable, and individual, frame a Constitution for the entire reconstruction of society and government in organized townships or communes. To effect this, the whole soil of the nation between each two whole numbered degrees of latitude of 69 1-2 miles, and of as many miles as lay between the approaching degrees of longitude, should be surveyed into tiers of ten square townships, lying north and south, of 6.95 miles square each, and when subdivided into homesteads, it will give 11.42 acres to each family in England, and every pair of unmarried males and females. This survey will only leave each of those tracts an inch or so narrower on the north than the south ends. But as in every other right, the principles of equality, inalienation, and individuality, demand that the south half of these homesteads should be the indisputable right of some man, and the north half that of some woman, whether wedded or single. And it will be greatly to the convenience and assistance of all parties to erect the shops, dwellings, and barns 150 feet apart, (with covered ways supporting graperies and other fruits,) as better security from fire, with a partition upon the division line between the two tracts of land. This will make it easy for either party, in case of uncongenial temper and other causes, to separate from the oppression of each other. There are in all countries more or less persons already living upon their proper share of soil, and those who have more, by dividing among heirs, may equalize it all; but those having still more should be required to disgorge to starving, landless families. When all are thus established upon equal and inalienable homesteads, landlordry and tenure becomes abolished; and when the people are not too numerous to meet in town hall to discuss and vote directly in proper person for their laws, and can settle disputed rights and wrongs by referees, with an appeal to the whole community, mankind will reach their highest civilization and happiness.

Now let the International Committee in London agree upon a Constitution embracing some such principles as these, and spurning the servile petitioning of the robbers of their rights, who never have and never will do anything more than to legalize their robberies, and so soon as they can get the majority of the laboring class (leaving the non-producing and monopolizing class in the minority) to sign it, to make it the paramount law of the land—peaceably if they can, forcibly if they must.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Dec. 26, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 16

Mr. Editor:—I must now congratulate the friends who have appreciated the views expressed in these articles, and reply to others to whom they seem to be too novel for their appreciation, and refer to the progress of my mind in their development.

In the Autumn of 1844, when the Land Reform Association, under the lead of George H. Evans, was agitating our three measures of “Homestead Exemption, Freedom of the Public Lands to actual settlers, and Land Limitation,” I conceived the idea of giving an improved classified form to that of Blackstone’s Commentaries on rights and wrongs—to make them more scientific, as no department of Nature can be properly reduced to science until all its individuals are arranged in all their ramifications from unity. I saw, through discussion, that the freedom of the public lands in limited quantities to actual settlers, and that the limitation of the holding of the present private lands, aiming at the equalization of them, contained the principle of equality, while the homestead exemption guaranteed against all alienation, contained, between them, two of the constituent principles of a perfect right, and by adding the third, individuality, it seemed to complete it. I drew up an article which filled the first page in our “Young America” paper, giving a similar, but more crude arrangement of the science of rights and wrongs, than in the present numbers. Mr. Evans acknowleded to me that the idea was novel to him of generalizing and applying the same principles which he had given to the rights of property to that of the personal rights, which he said did away with officers as well as landlords. But he thought it would frighten and repulse public sentiment to feed it with more new doctrine than it could digest at one time. I have continued writing letters to radical correspondents and occasional articles in papers ever since. I read a paper on the subject to our Secular Convention in the Autumn of 1866, in Philadelphia, which was listened to with attention, and which passed my resolution on the subject.

I have felt gratified and complimented by the editor of the Investigator, who has called attention three times to the present series of articles now publishing in its columns.

A friend, F. McKinney, states that he is receiving instruction from my essays. This is encouraging, as it comes from one who shows by his articles that he is a thinker, and has tunnelled his way through the misty mountain mass of priestcraft. But he is mistaken if he supposes that I think my plans can be carried into effect immediately, and advises me to “wait for the development of my plans.” But how can they become developed if not published and agitated? Waiting will neither make plants nor ideas grow without cultivation and dissemination. He says errors “gain strength by time, and require time to eradicate them.” This, then, makes it more urgent that no time should be lost in showing how they are to be eradicated.

Another friend, S. Robb, seems to squirm at what he calls “compulsory ownership of land,” and seems blind to the fact that his eyes are intimately connected with the light of the sun, his lungs with the air of the welkin, and his stomach with the food and other products of the soil, and therefore that life depends on the intimate and inseparable connection with them. Thus Nature compels the necessity of a connection with the soil and appurtenant elements, and yet he seems to think it a tyranny to be compelled to own a homestead perpetually. But in charging me with setting capital and labor at war with each other, he shows that he has not advanced to the knowledge which the producers of all wealth have, that labor and homestead and capital must be combined in the same persons, and not all the labor in one class and the capital in another. Oh! Robb, you do not see that about one-fifth of the product of labor is extorted to pay rents, another to pay profitmongers for the bad distribution of the necessaries of life, another to pay taxes for useless, non-producing officers and wars, and another fifth for the very useless non-producing and ignorantizing church and clergy—leaving but a scant fifth for the preservation of the life of the honest and producing laborer? But to a blank mind on this subject all reasoning is a waste of powder and advice.

Truths would you teach to aid a sinking land?

All fear, none aid you, and few understand.

Another friend, “A Private,” too modest to give his name, complains of the length of my essays, and that he had no chance to be heard in the paper. Perhaps he has only read the numbers of my articles, and cannot be aware that I am taking up the principles of rights and wrongs where Mr. Paine left them, and am cramming in small space a subject that popular writers would swell out into a part of thick octavo volumes. But if this does not stop his childish whining, I will endeavor to quiet him by sending him a lump of sugar.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Dec. 31, 1871.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 17

Mr. Editor:—Let us now sum up how far we have progressed in our system of reform as suggestions to the Convention, which should assemble as soon as possible, in London, Eng., and in New York city, to declare the thorough principles of reform in Europe and America.

We commenced by stating, that as the mind is but the property of the nervous system, it dies with it—cannot evaporate from it and form a spiritual world around a God as its creator.—For as a Maker, it makes him the owner and giver of everything, and therefore that all our natural wants, rights, virtues, &c., come from him through vicegerent priests and kings. By dubbing him the “King of kings,” he becomes the model for kings on earth, and therefore all must be dethroned before man can attain peace and liberty. It demoralizes the human mind in the belief of a system of godology, that splits or divides into two great orders of evil. One, with a God as its symbol or model, places a Pope or a Llama at its head, with a graduated scale of officers running through earth and extending down to a mythical Hell. The other puts a King at its head, with a similar scale of superior and inferior officers extending through earth down to the same imaginary Hell—but creating a real one in every nation.

We then pointed out that these two orders of officers could only represent the non-producing monopolizers of the soil and sovereignty, by means of taxing more than four-fifths of the product of the landless producer’s toil; and declared that this “Tammany ring” godology can only be broken by a thorough reconstruction of all society and government, by the attainment of every family to a natural right to an equal, inalienable, and individual homestead and sovereignty in an organized township or commune.

We denounced, also, the base slander of the priesthood, that man is born depraved, when it is so obvious that all are virtuous or vicious according as they are well organized, have balanced temperaments, and have been trained amid favorable surrounding circumstances. But this dogma of the original depravity of man has furnished the priesthood the pretense for the need of an incarnated intercessor god-man, to procure pardons from his Father for man’s sin. The dogmas of these vicegerent redeemers are yet the foundation of Church and State in all nations, and run through all their theologies, from Buddha and Jezeus Chrishna of Asia to the re-hash of them in our Jesus Christ in Europe and America. Political and religious priests are yet diligently wholesaling and retailing their quack pills in the form of “vested rights or privileges,” and of “saving grace,” from every capital and church throughout the earth, while the inalienable homestead, township, and commune seem to be the only efficient antidote.

We have dug down, and found the true foundation of man’s rights resting on the bottom-rock of his natural, equal, inalienable, and individual wants, which make all his rights the same.—We next found each human being in accordance with the five great systems of organs composing his body, as giving rise to the same number of personal properties and rights, which demand a right to property or a share to the external world or soil, in the form of homestead and the whole product of each one’s labor, for their protection.

We then classed together the three great constituent principles of a perfect right, as those of equality, inalienation, and individuality, with their respective opposites or wrongs.

We next stated that whatever principle is applied to one genus of rights, must be applied to all the others. That, therefore, if a portion of the soil must be attached to each person as equal, inalienable, and individual, subject to no liability to alienate, so must the right to life be preserved from war, assassination, judicial murder, etc.; so must manhood be protected from chattel slavery; so must the right to monogamy be secured against polygamy, polyandry, commonogamy, and celibacy; so must the right to labor be guaranteed against hireling slavery, ignorantly called free labor; and so must the right to sovereignty, or the power of self-government, be preserved by voting in proper person directly for the law, without the intervention of a so-called proxy or representative.

We have given, also, some general views upon the organization of a nation into townships or communes; but we want to suggest many particulars of equal importance with the general principles, for the success of reform, before we wind up with an outline of a working constitution. And we hope our readers will patiently submit to be instructed in a few more numbers. Some are complaining of too much sameness in the correspondence of the Investigator; but such are likely the very ones who overlook the “pearls that are cast around them.” They have gotten to see that it is cruel and felonious for Jehovah to send two she-bears down to devour forty-two playful children; to send his destroying angel to slay 70,000 humans, merely because the census of them had been taken; to aid Joshua to exterminate the harmless Canaanites, and to drown the race of men because he could not create them better. I see that none of them are as innocent as “the tender lamb that never nipped the grass,” of knowing that as great as religious evils are, the political, economical, and social ones are still greater; that were religious nuisances removed, it would still leave the soil and other capital monopolized, and one-half of wretched humanity upon the verge of pauperism.

It seems to me that the contributors to the Investigator at present are giving a rare variety. Friend Ebacorum is sounding the depths of the earth, and tracing progressive development through the mineral, vegetable, and animal worldoms; Mr. Pike and Mrs. Chappellsmith are throwing a calcium light into the foggy myths of Christianity; Pringle is showing how finely developed and healthy men can be trained, instead of lanky, hollow-breasted and consumptive wretches; and the writer aims at taking them from their hands and reconstructing them into their destined Millennium.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Feb. 11, 1872.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 18

Mr. Editor:—Considering that the liberty and happiness of all humanity are at stake, and how all have and are still suffering from the propagation of erroneous dogmas, it behooves the members of all Œcumenical Conventions to sharpen their perceptions by a resort even to a reduction of the fat of their brains to ascertain the truth. The writer first followed the authority of Owen, before thinking on his own hook, and embraced communism as his first stage in the progress of reform, and which still seems to seize upon the majority of reformers as epidemical, both in Europe and America. It comes over the brain like the moon over the sun, and eclipses the reformatory mind from seeing that natural wants are the true foundation of the equal, inalienable, and individual rights of man, and of course from heeding the radical power that there is in the principle of an inalienable homestead. They seem to be shy in the use of the words individual, inalienable, homestead, &c., as instilling the sentiment of meum and teum, mine and thine, which they think must be exorcised before they can succeed in their communism.

But the undersigned is one of a minority, who believes that individualism is the true principle of man’s redemption, and that there is not enough of it established in society. For what is one man’s to-day is another’s to-morrow, in consequence of there being no guarantee that makes rights and property perpetual in the owner.—Even the millionaire is not secure in his just share of his immense wealth. Communists mistake the present competition of capital with capital, of labor with labor, and of both with each other, as being the result of individual ownership, instead of the inequality and monopoly of labor and capital. They heed not the permanent security, that if each family possessed an inalienable homestead, exempted from any liability to alienate for debt, sale, tax, mortgage, &c., but only to be exchanged for each other, that individual ownership would only most powerfully stimulate to duty and emulation, instead of competition with each other’s interests.

But as the advocates of either individualism, nationalization, or communism of rights and property, are now all striking for the land, let it be no cause for division among us Internationals.—For all these systems can be put into experiment when the time comes, and thus the true one can be determined. This makes it the more urgent that each one should adhere to his system without bigotry, for the hope that it may be the right one, especially as all experience has proved that it is rather a lucky blunderer who can catch and hold to the truth, so much like a pig with his ears and tail greased.

But whether individualism, nationalism, or communism is the true principle, all three demand that the soil of the country, at least, should be surveyed into townships or communes, and the two former that they should be subdivided down to farms in quarter miles square of forty-five and sixty-eight one-hundredths acres, when population will permit, and still be subdivisible down to the minimum of a family support of ten acres, (or, rather, 11.42 acres,) and then be subdivisable no more. For this purpose, take the present well-understood geographical division of the surface of the earth now used in geography, into lines of latitude and longitude, that divide it into sloping oblongs 59 1-2 miles at the equator, and sloping to about one-third at north latitude 70 degrees. This would give a tier of ten townships, running north and south of six and ninety-five one-hundredths square miles without fractions. But the tiers running east and west would vary from ten at the equator, to about one-third that number at latitude 70 north, and there would occur fractions on the east side running east from Greenwich, and on the west side running west from it. In subdividing each township into forty-acre tracts, it will only be necessary to mark where the divisions into the four tracts of ten acres commence, and where the divisions between the north and south halves begin for each man and woman.—Let our International brethren of England commence their survey where the fifty-first degree of north latitude crosses the meridian of Greenwich; let our French brethren commence on the same meridian, and where it is crossed by the forty-eighth degree of north latitude; and let our New York brethren commence on the seventy-fourth meridian where crossed by the forty-first degree of north latitude, and our Massachusetts friends where the seventy-first meridian crosses the forty-second degree of north latitude.

As there is only the 11.42 acres for a family in England, France, Germany, and other countries of Europe, the lands must be surveyed down to that quantity. This will cut up the lands of present holders, but they will have to exchange lots until they get them into square homesteads. It will find many holders in possession of their rightful shares of soil, and those who have more, by dividing with their heirs, will increase the number. And then those few hundred families of so-called nobility of England, all Europe, and Asia, who have monopolized nearly the whole of the lands of their countries, and turned them into pasturage, parks, and hunting-grounds, must be made to contract their claims to the forty acres upon which their palaces stand, and to sell out the remainder, after dividing with their heirs, to landless persons. Thus may the soil of the earth be equally divided, perhaps, without resorting to the agrarian division of it, which is such a bugbear to nabobs.

The townships of each one of these sections bounded by the whole numbered lines of latitude and longitude, could also be designated by beginning in the south-west corner going east, and south-east corner running west, and be numbered as one north and one east or west, according to the side of the world’s meridian of Greenwich, until they come out to the north-east or west corners, as in the United States surveys. And then the forty (or 45.68) acre tracts can be numbered in the same way; while the four tracts of eleven acres and forty-two one-hundredths could be designated as the S. E., S. W., N. E., and N. W., homesteads, and each one of these, again,’ could be designated as the north and south halves of them. This would improve the geography of the whole earth to a far more scientific division and nomenclature.

But were the phonetic system of spelling by the true elementary sounds of the voice, and of marking the accented syllables of all these names of the divisions of the earth adopted, it would aid the union of languages and the introduction of a universal one. These scientific names, in addition to their correct pronunciation, would be preferred in the postal departments of all nations; for, with a map, they would see the position and distance of every place upon the earth, without loading the memory with the hundreds of thousands of badly spelled and never properly pronounced names of so many languages. In fact, were all mankind in possession of their natural right to inalienable homesteads, the present cities would very properly be depopulated and fall into ruins, except enough of them to accommodate large shipping, manufacturing, and trade. The whole country would become a rural city of mingled houses, farms, shops, and parks.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) Feb. 28, 1872.


For the Boston Investigator.

An Œcumenical Convention

Of the World’s Political and Religious Reformers.

No. 19

Mr. Editor:—Having in the previous number proposed a plan for the division of the soil of the earth into States, townships, and homesteads, named by their numbers from the cardinal points and lines of the globe, it will now be shown how each State and township may be organized into a Paradise of landed and self-ruling democracies.

In every township the most convenient and central tract of forty acres should be appropriated for the public buildings. The town hall may be erected in the centre, with the equitable exchange mart, college, museum, library, reading-room, &c., placed around, at such distances that the burning of one could not catch to the others. All the roads in each township must run with the boundary of the forty-acre tracts, and be graded wider than those running around the ten-acre ones, and thrown up into a sharp ridge and gravelled ten or twelve feet wide. Thus the adults and children will only have the healthy exercise of walking from a few miles to only a few steps to the public institutions.

There must be no such thing as the erection of buildings for trade or manufacture upon little and mean 25 by 100 feet village lots around the common township buildings, but every family must live upon inalienable homesteads. Part of them may cultivate, and part perform some mechanism, or confine themselves to the one employment only, by cultivating those plants that require less labor. On every homestead, then, the dwellings, barns, and shops should be built so far apart as not to catch fire from each other; and each of them should be erected with a division wall upon the line between the male and female halves of the homestead, with the same range of rooms on each side. This is suggested in case of disagreement between man and wife, and it is hoped will give both sexes bettor freedom and independence of each other than the system of free love in communism. For, as nothing but the independent ownership of an inalienable homestead can give freedom to a man’s vote, so nothing else can give the same to the woman in government, or guarantee both from the tyranny of the other.

As the increase of the human race must reduce the homesteads down to the minimum of a family support of ten acres, it must dispense with the horse-power, which requires as much soil to support it as a man; the simple spade or other cheap power must be adopted. Beeves, too, that cost as much as a man, must give place to the cheaper food of fish, that can be reared in small space, and also the hen, that can be raised mostly on insects that injure plants. Thus fences, so costly to build and keep in repair, can be dispensed with; so that gravelled walks with rows of fruit trees on each side can be made to divide sufficiently every homestead, while forest trees for fuel can be raised on one or two acres of each. Iron tubular pumps can be driven into the ground in almost every hollow, with wind-mills to raise the water into tanks or fish-ponds, so as to irrigate the crops and defy the rainless skies from parching vegetation. Thus, were men endowed with a proper economy and civilization, they could create a Providence itself, and be independent of the heartless elements, or the deafness of the gods to their prayers. The nations would no longer suffer from famine (as in Persia) from heedlessness in assisting kind Nature in her donations.

With every family upon these equal, inalienable, and individual homesteads, and organized into townships or communes, all would be responsible to themselves, and be stimulated to industry and duty. All would emulate in agriculture and manufacture. None in health and strength could have the cheek to beg when his weedy grounds would pronounce him a vagrant. But where everything belongs to all in general, and to none in particular, there would be superintendents—a modified form of officers, or rather a species of masters, making the rest a kind of slaves. The whole would be crowded in a splendid palace, insecure from contagious diseases, and be eternally annoying each other by uncongenial manners and sentiments. In short, too close together for continued sociability. But dispersed in vine-embowered cottages, they would have the sublime liberty of self-employment and direction, and be recreated when meeting congenial friends.

Communism, in attempting to destroy the sentiment of mine and thine—of anything being my right or your right—only more completely alienates and destroys rights than they are at present. While ever natural wants are individual in each person, so must rights also be kept separate. The communism of property tends to the logical inference that men, women, and children must own each other in common. But how can any claim and assert his or her rights, without the sentiment of there being something that belongs to them individually? It is an enlightened self-interest that should be nurtured in the breast—not the delusion of a disinterested philanthropy.

In the individual homestead system, there would be more restraint upon raising too many heirs for the homesteads left. But a register of the moment of each one’s birth would show, by priority of age, the rightful owners of the homes left by those leaving no heirs, so that there would be no wrangling about titles, while all disputes would be adjudged by referees, without cost. A small poll-tax would repair all public buildings, roads, bridges, etc., and thus all the enormous expenses of present society and government would be avoided, with all its Tammany, State, and Federal rings stealing millions of dollars and acres of the people’s lands.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, L. I., (N. Y.,) March 8, 1872.


The articles on “Godology” appear, with very minor revisions, on pages 111–115 of Sociology.


For the Boston Investigator.

Godology.—No. 1.

Mr. Editor:—The dogmas of Godology have prevented mankind from advancing directly to a true knowledge of the real foundation of their rights and virtues. The dogma of a personal God-Creator, with that of the slanderous falsehood of the inherent depravity of man, have eclipsed the intellectual and moral world with almost total darkness, but which, it is hoped, will pass off in a few more generations.

Man’s organs, and the properties and wants resulting from them, though developed by the stimulation of surrounding objects, are none the less natural and inherent in all, and become the origin of his rights and virtues. For, as natural wants are the most common property in all, they become the true foundation of rights; and as they are so equal in quantity, duration, and individuality, rights and a chance to be virtuous should also be equal, inalienable, and individual, and should be exercised and enjoyed by each person in propria persona, and not by the erroneous principle of a proxy and representative.

But notwithstanding this palpable foundation of man’s wants, rights, and virtue, he is slandered by the absurd dogma of being born in a state of sin and depravity by a puerile story of the disobedience of a first man. This, then, by denying native virtue to man, also denies that he can have natural rights, right in the face of the fact that natural wants prove the existence of natural rights—that the one supposes and must be followed by the other.

This dogmatic delusion of man’s depravity by nature by a supposed fall, and the consequent loss of his rights and virtue, by reverting back to this supposed Creator, supposes him to be the owner and giver of them all again. How, then, to re-instate man in his rights and virtue again, becomes the question with political and religious priests. Finding it very difficult to get access to their Gods above the clouds or from the top of Babel towers, they feigned intervening personifications of abstract principles to bring them down to earth—though Moses, the Jewish priest, is said to have obtained an audience with his Jehovah, who hid his face. The Pagan priests conceiving their God, Para-Brahma, too far out of their reach, invented a trinity of secondary Gods, to whom they could address their worship, in the form of Brahma, to create and to be their own particular tutelary God; in the form of Vishnu, to preserve the common people; and in the form of Siva, to destroy and punish as the great scarecrow. The mode, at first, of obtaining the favors of these Gods was by the horrid sacrifices of human beings and beasts by the priesthood. But in time there was some real personage of more humanity, who endeavored to reform these cruel sacrificial tortures and burnings to secure a Paradise, but who was crucified for his merciful intentions of innovating upon the religion of his country. This, then, laid the foundation of the godly story of Chrishna, whose exploits have been sung by some humane poet in the Baghavat, an epic poem in Hindoo literature. There Vishnu is represented as having passed through a system of incarnations—through the different orders of lower animals, until he came out a God-man, born of a virgin, and for preaching against tyrants and in favor of the poor, he was nailed to a tree between two malefactors.

The story of this friendly God to man represents him, also, as being a physical healer of diseases in the region of Agra, in the Valley of the Ganges; under the name of Osiris by the Therapeuts in Egypt; that of Mithra in Persia, and of Prometheus in Greece. He had been adored for ages, according to Herodotus, by various sects called ascetics, Essenes, and Therapeuts; but it was left to the authors of the New Testament to torture the puerile story of man’s expulsion from Paradise into his fall into a state of sin and depravity, and at enmity with God. They endeavored to disguise the source from which they got the story of their new Christ, by adding Jesus to it, and by still torturing the Old Testament for a pretended prophecy long before his feigned advent.

God, then, to communicate with man, as the priest supposed, must have his cabinet of archangels and secretaries, with prophets, ambassadors, redeemers, or intercessors, to intercede between him and man, with subordinate vicegerents in the person of kings and popes, with gradations, also, of subordinate political and religious priests. But these two great classes of government are yet generally united under the same head, joining State and Church, as in China, India, Russia, the Roman States, England, &c., and separated in Japan, Sweden, Holland, the United States, etc. But whether united or separated, the doctrine yet prevails to a most lamentable extent, that man’s natural, inherent, and sovereign rights and virtues are all concentrated in a supposed Godology, and must be vouchsafed to poor ass-eared humanity through the thrones of kings and popes. And when rights are granted by kings they are designated by the mild term of privileges, which may revert back, as they claim that sovereignty remains in the king. And when virtue is granted, it is designated by the charlatanic name of God’s grace, which may be lost, and revert back to the Pope and to Jesus.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) Oct 18, 1869.


For the Boston Investigator.

Godology.—No. 2.

Mr. Editor:—It is shameful that mankind are yet generally so ignorant as not to see that their rights as well as their wants are natural, equal, and inalienable. That there should be even a Protestant King of Prussia, trained to the belief that his person is sacred, and that his right to rule is divine! Indeed, all kings believe rights are divine, and must come from God through their thrones. Even when dethroned amidst a republican people, they still retain their ignorance like some of our ex-slaveholders, and think they have been much abused by being shorn of their tyranny. An ignorant world can now behold a godologically ignorant and superanuated Pope, decreeing the additional dogma of the “immaculate conception,” issuing his bulls against the exercise of private opinion, against the progress of republican governments, and now a circular letter, calling on the higher heads of churches in Christendom to meet in one of those general councils, to conspire against the progress of knowledge and liberty among mankind. And yet we behold Protestant sects of Christendom denouncing this most orthodox form of Godology, while they get their creeds from the same book and worship the same Gods. Such small tweedledees make sects in Christian as well as Pagan and Mahometan religions.

But Godology plagiarizes morality’s thunder, and takes its credit to itself; but when subtracted from it, there is nothing left but a bigoted and persecuting set of dogmas. Its fanatic devotees make pilgrimages to the tombs of Christ, Mahomet, and to the Ganges. They have crusaded and fought in holy wars to the destruction of millions. They have been tortured in inquisitions, massacred each other, and have thrown themselves into the flames. How can any one, then, seeing that man’s wants, rights, and virtues are founded in the properties of his organs—that he is good and virtuous in proportion to his better organization, happy temperaments, and correct training, be so stupid as to believe that all these hellish deeds could have been perpetrated, if there had been none of these demoralizing dogmas of Godology? Away with the stupidity that if these had not existed, there would have been something else to make men such monsters!—But it most eloquently proves the native goodness of man amid such internal dogmas, that he has not been a greater devil than he has—that he has been so good with the example of such a vengeance-breathing God as Jehovah, who destroyed through his agents hosts of human beings for the most capricious reasons, and commanded the extermination of whole nations, which, as history relates, have been most terribly imitated by conquerors. Yet as the duration of peace is much longer in the aggregate than warfare, it shows the greater preponderance for good among poor humanity.

The doctrine, then, of vicegerents to give humbug privileges and grace to man, makes him also the giver of the soil. But its gift has ever stopped in the possession of his vicegerent kings, priests, and conquerors. Thus arose the feudal system of God as head landlord, next to the king, then the chiefs, who retained it while the masses became serfs, bound for its use by fealty and knight-service. But since there came into use a money medium of exchange, a rent has been substituted for the use of soil and premises.—The millions now under this form of slavery are suffering the throes of starvation prices or pauperism. And there is no hope for man until the monopoly of the soil is destroyed,—all restored to an inalienable homestead, giving the power of self-employment, an independent vote by townships in proper person directly for the law.

Thus, there is no salvation for man short of sweeping the nuisance of Godology from the clouds and of political and theological priests from the earth. Thus Godology is the great focus to which all evil centres and radiates. In short, it is treason against humanity, and should be indicted and abated as the great annoyance of the Universe.

Yours, &c.

Lewis Masquerier.

Green Point, (N. Y.,) Oct 18, 1869.

 

About Shawn P. Wilbur 2038 Articles
Independent scholar, translator and archivist.