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Amid all the confusion and uncertainty which surrounds that chaotic state known as Germany, one vital fact has been brought out by the overthrow of the Kapp regime,--the German people are in favor of a democratic form of government. Unexpected as this may appear, it is hardly to be denied. In Bavaria, Saxony, Wurttemberg, and the north-western parts of the country, where the influence of the Prussian eagle had been least marked, it was to be expected that a new despotism would be unpopular. But the amazing thing is that Berlin, the center of Junkerthum, far from acclaiming Kapp and his military lieutenant, actually treated them with a powerful, though passive resistance, in the form of a general strike.
To be sure, there are the old scare-heads in the newspapers, announcing the return of their favorite bete-noir, Spartacism. Yet, this is a contingency which is less to be feared than any of the many possibilities which confront us. The soviet may not be the best form of government, but it is surely preferable to a military aristocracy, as it is, to a certain extent, at least, representative of the people. Some persons fear that in the reaction from Bolshevism, the old order may again be set up. But this again is troubling ourselves with phantoms of our imagination. A revolution, conducted in the dear, old methodical Teutonic way would be so mild a form of chaos that there need be no swing of the pendelum in the opposite direction. To the contrary, the chances are strongly in favor of such a movement simmering down to a good, comfortable bourgeois democracy, such as we ourselves enjoy, for the German temperament lacks that volatility which alone renders mob rule a menace.
The civilized world may properly be grateful to Kapp for showing them that the German republic, far from being an empty shell, is living organism for which Germans will fight, if necessary. As long as they demand representative government, be it constitutional, or be it soviet, the rest of the world has not much to fear. To be sure, we may expect that Germany will be troubled by many revolts and uprisings, both monarchist and radical. But until we see the posability of the restoration of the military regime with its idols we need not worry. As for the agitation, it is doubtless as annoying to Germans as it is to the rest of the world. Anything to prod them out of their usual conplacency will be most useful. They may not like it, but with nations as with individuals, the way of the reformed transgressor is hard.
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