I don't know if anyone is interested, but here is the thread for the third stave of A Christmas Carol. It is my favorite stave for many reasons- the descriptions of London at Christmas, the sweet domesticity of the Cratchitt and Fred's Christmases, and the social commentary that seems to be the strongest in this stave. My favorite part is when Scrooge asks if Tiny Tim will survive, to which question the Spirit of Christmas Present says the following:
"If these shadows remain unaltered by the Future, none other of my race,' returned the Ghost, 'will find him here. What then? If he be like to die, he had better do it and decrease the surplus population.'
Scrooge hung his head to hear his own words quoted by the Spirit, and was overcome with penitence and grief.
'Man,' said the Ghost, 'if man you be in heart, not adamant, forbear that wicked cant until you have discovered What the surplus is, and Where it is. Will you decide what men shall live, what men shall die? It may be, that in the sight of Heaven, you are more worthless and less fit to live than millions like this poor man's child.
Oh God! to hear the Insect on the leaf pronouncing on the too much life among the hungry brothers in the dust!'