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Hiram Percy Maxim, September 1927

The Reason Why
By Hiram Percy Maxim, President, A.R.R.L.
QST for September, 1927

SITTING back in the old armchair, with the last issue of QST read from
cover to cover and with everybody else in the house asleep hours ago, I
fell to thinking of amateur radio to-day and amateur radio of other days.
As the blue smoke curls slowly upward from the old pipe, visions of early
A.R.R.L. Directors’ Meetings float before me. I see those old-timers
grappling with problems of organization, with QRM, with trunk-line traffic
and rival amateur leagues. I see sinister commercial and government
interests at work seeking to exterminate amateur radio. They were dark
days, those early ones.

To-day I see Amateur Radio an institution, recognized by our American
government and on the road to recognitions by the other governments of the
world. I see a fine, loyal A.R.R.L. membership of 20,000 standing shoulder
to shoulder and believing in each other and still blazing the way in radio
brotherhood taking shape, in the form of our I.A.R.U.

And as the last embers of the old pipe turn to grey ash, I ask how it all
came about: that the A.R.R.L. should have succeeded and all its opponents
failed. The answer is clear. It is because with our opponents there was
always some kind of a selfish motive to be served for someone, whereas in
our A.R.R.L. we insisted from the beginning that no selfish motive for
anybody or anything should ever prevail. Everything that A.R.R.L.
undertakes must be 100% for the general good. That policy bred loyalty and
confidence. With those two things an organization can prosper forever.

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