- Yg. 1931, No. 4 -

The Reichstag will reassemble only in a few days. Actually, I would have to wait for his coming actions. Reckless as I am, I suppose that they will be zero, as before. The honorable Members will grumble a little, but heartily they will be glad that the government is lifting them up to the unpleasant situation of burning their fingers in the eyes of their constituents. I therefore take it for granted that the Budget for 1931 including all armored pleasure-boats will be granted by government dictate just as the unions have been made the imposition of wage-fighting impossible.

So I come to the sad conclusion that the republic, wrapped in fog, may disappear tomorrow, and that state power has been withdrawn from the people. The only question that interests me as a puny lay lawyer is whether the state power is stolen, for example. And then I came up with the following comparison.

The foreign merchants in China, since the local labor is cheap, tend to keep a great deal of domestic servants. These Chinese servants have become accustomed to two things: everyone only does what they have been hired for, and they all know how to generate additional income through all sorts of lists. But those servants for whom this is not enough have come up with an ingenious method of gradual stealing, unless they are simply clumsy. The objects of this activity are objects that the rulers only very rarely need. They are first taken to some secret location within the house. If one day the authorities asks about it, the perpetrator declares that he cannot remember having ever seen the object. Then the decision is made: either the rulers accept the fact that the object is gone, or they make a row. In the latter case, the boy in question (that's what they are called in China) will soon appear with the happily recovered item and thus become a "servant's pearl". In the former case, the boy can now use the item in peace for his own benefit.

I must confess that I consider this Chinese art of gradual stealing the most ingenious thing that has ever been conceived by a human brain in the field of expropriation.

And now the utility for our messengers of the people: The public power emanating from the people still exists, it has been deposited by the government Brüning only in a hidden place. The big decision is now coming. Will the people make a noise or will it settle for the fact? Sir Brüning may it not be my fault that in a sense I compare him to a Chinese boy. He may resent it any less, as some of these boys are otherwise quite famous people. In any case, his method still seems to me to be more painless than those which the men of Adolf I. will presumably use. They will use violence to take the last of their power out of the people and drag them into their pockets for themselves and their big friends.

Is there really no way for our payrollers, who are paid according to salary class 10 (- 20 percent), to return from the, in some respects certainly comfortable, Chinese household conditions to more uncomfortable but solid Western European ones?

1931, 4 · Paul von Schoenaich