|Henry Beston's Northern Farm (Chimney Farm), Nobleboro, Maine - Original 1978 Photograph from Archives|
There is only one test of any political scheme or adventure in government. It is the quality of the human being produced by the political order and by the way of life occasioned by that order. Such materialistic arithmetic as the amount of electric power sold, the number of motor cars produced, and the immense potential of this and that means nothing whatever. A truce to these materialistic puffings of a materialistic heaven as vulgar, tedious, and empty in its conception as anything ever held up to the inquiring spirit of man.
But the human being? There you are. Is that human being a conscious member of a community and willing to do his best by it, has he honesty and courage, the reasonable public good manners which keep the experiment on the way it should go, has he a proper sense of the human decencies and is he seized upon now and then by his birthright of natural gaiety; has the man his quality of manhood and decision and the woman her immense and mystical power?
"Man the measure of all things." A good adage once the limits of its application are understood.
- Henry Beston Sheahan, Harvard Class of ’09; <http://harvardmagazine.com/2013/09/vita-henry-beston-sheahan>, Northern Farm <http://amzn.to/2n6MprX>