SELDOM have fewer regrets been wasted on a dying year than at the passing of 1920. But the turn of the year is ever a signal for optimism, and as the twentieth century enters its coming-of-age year hopes run high. “We have”, say the optimists, “touched bottom; now things will begin to mend.’’ Certainly there is much that is encouraging in the political outlook, and although the industrial prospect is disturbing, we can extract some satisfaction from the growing perception of economic principles. Slowly, to be sure, but none the less certainly, the general public is beginning to understand something of the inseparable association of energy and the means of life. Looking farther afield, the strengthening of the League of Nations and its increasing prestige are matters upon which we may justifiably build hopes of a brighter future. The whole world is longing for peace, is eager to trade, and to resume the arts of peace generally. Many obstacles still block the way, and not the least is the burden of restrictive legislation all over Europe, with its concomitant of an enormous and unproductive bureaucracy subsisting on the fruitful diligence of the rest of the community. The modern greeting, “A happy and prosperous New Year,” is being exchanged with more than usual sincerity.
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