"The announcement that the directors of the Harvard Co-operative Society have passed a provisional vote to wind up the affairs of that organization is a surprise. The society has been represented as an entire success, and as doing a steadily increasing business. It has been considered a model for other colleges. Under its by-laws its managers are prohibited from incurring debts. Its fundamental principle has been to enforce cash payments in making all purchases and sales, and the stock carried and owned by it rightfully represents nothing but its invested savings. Unless this principle has been departed from, there seems to be no valid reason for closing its account, even temporarily, as is suggested by the directors. The difficulty is a very simple one, and for all that appears on the surface, easy of remedy. Where an active and prosperous business was done at first on the smallest possible salaries and in the most economical way, there are now payments made for salaries sufficient to eat up all that is raised from a largely increased menbership, paying an increased fee. If the society on a simple basis, employing only one person and carrying very little stock of its own, was a success, and the same society carrying a heavy stock, engaging in unremunerative branches of business and employing seven persons, is a failure, the moral needs no extended explanation."
Co-Operation at Harvard.
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