Full text: Borrowing and business in Australia

and guided the present investigation into capital expenditure 
in Australia in relation to general prosperity. 
A few further words by way of disclaimer are, doubtless, 
necessary. The inevitable impression made on the mind of the 
reader by this essay will be that Australia has achieved her 
present standard of welfare by way of a succession of more or 
less serious business relapses. This, of course, would be a sheer 
distortion of the true facts of the case ; but it proceeds from the 
undue emphasis which has, perforce, to be laid on the symptoms 
of disease exhibited by the patient in less healthy moments. 
For the economist, as for the surgeon, there lies in the con- 
templation of pathological complications a certain gloomy 
delight which is inseparable from a somewhat morbid profession. 
But the greater pleasure, and the vaster service, consists in 
devising means of remedy rather than in the mere diagnosis of 
disease. The attitude of both is determined by a desire for the 
patient’s welfare, and is directed towards prevention rather 
than towards perpetuation of the unhealthy conditions. In 
this motive must be found the excuse for the discomfort caused 
by the probing processes of examination, which are the neces- 
sary though painful preliminaries of recovery.

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