Signs of the Times

[From an article in Credit Monthly, New York, New York]

There is no quality of character which tends so much to integrity, to soundness, to progress, and to leadership as the telling of the truth at all times and in all circumstances. The truth sometimes seems harmful in certain circumstances or in serious pinches; but the truth never harms permanently. It brings its reward if one is but patient enough to wait upon it. In the morals of business, in the ethics of credit, veracity is the most highly needed quality. What does it profit a man to misrepresent the goods he is selling or his affairs? What good is accomplished in credit work by giving an inquirer a false report of a debtor's standing? ... We cannot build up the morals of business or the ethics of credit without a faithful adherence to truth, no matter how urgent the circumstances may be or the temptation to prevaricate.

What a loss it would have been to our history had Abe Lincoln lacked veracity! He would have remained a struggling lawyer in Springfield. His name would not have dignified American history; his statue would not have looked upon the Houses of Parliament in Westminster. So it is with some who remain obscure. They have failed in leadership; they have offered nothing to the nation's upbuilding because they lacked veracity, because they put their faith in lying. Of all human qualities, truth in season and out of season yields the largest profits.

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September 18, 1926

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