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Crotchet Castle

6. Theories
But when they came to shape the model,
Not one could fit the other's noddle.--BUTLER.
Meanwhile, the last course, and the dessert, passed by. When the ladies had
withdrawn, young Crotchet addressed the company.
MR. CROTCHET, JUN. There is one point in which philosophers of all classes
seem to be agreed: that they only want money to regenerate the world.
MR. MAC QUEDY. No doubt of it. Nothing is so easy as to lay down the outlines
of perfect society. There wants nothing but money to set it going. I will explain
myself clearly and fully by reading a paper. (Producing a large scroll.) "In the
infancy of society--"
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. Pray, Mr. Mac Quedy, how is it that all gentlemen of your
nation begin everything they write with the "infancy of society?"
MR. MAC QUEDY. Eh, sir, it is the simplest way to begin at the beginning. "In the
infancy of society, when government was invented to save a percentage; say two
and a half per cent.--"
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. I will not say any such thing.
MR. MAC QUEDY. Well, say any percentage you please.
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. I will not say any percentage at all.
MR. MAC QUEDY. "On the principle of the division of labour--"
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. Government was invented to spend a percentage.
MR. MAC QUEDY. To save a percentage.
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. No, sir, to spend a percentage; and a good deal more than
two and a half percent. Two hundred and fifty per cent.: that is intelligible.
MR. MAC QUEDY.--"In the infancy of society--"
MR. TOOGOOD.--Never mind the infancy of society. The question is of society in
its maturity. Here is what it should be. (Producing a paper.) I have laid it down in
a diagram.
MR. SKIONAR. Before we proceed to the question of government, we must
nicely discriminate the boundaries of sense, understanding, and reason. Sense is
a receptivity MR. CROTCHET, JUN. We are proceeding too fast. Money being all
that is wanted to regenerate society, I will put into the hands of this company a
large sum for the purpose. Now let us see how to dispose of it.
MR. MAC QUEDY. We will begin by taking a committee-room in London, where
we will dine together once a week, to deliberate.
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. If the money is to go in deliberative dinners, you may set
me down for a committee man and honorary caterer.
MR. MAC QUEDY. Next, you must all learn political economy, which I will teach
you, very compendiously, in lectures over the bottle.
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. I hate lectures over the bottle. But pray, sir, what is
political economy?
MR. MAC QUEDY. Political economy is to the state what domestic economy is to
the family.
REV. DR. FOLLIOTT. No such thing, sir. In the family there is a paterfamilias,
who regulates the distribution, and takes care that there shall be no such thing in