Thus, if those who cannot recognize evil are unequipped to fight it, and those who are aware of evil choose not to fight it, a depraved world where evil is simply left to its own devices inevitably results. Man, and especially man on land, eventually learns from experience that social life, in its gridlock of mistrust, becomes “an oblique, tedious, barren game hardly worth that poor candle burned out in playing it.” In the narrator’s view, the impossibility of mutual trust seems to rob life on land of all savor and meaning. Moreover, as the example of the Dansker shows, potentially beneficial warnings often remain unvoiced and hidden between so-called well-meaning men, casting an even more depressing shadow over human existence. This breakdown of communication is not only complete, but also unacknowledged and unconscious. After all, the narrator concedes that he is merely speculating when he states that life experience “had very likely” driven the Dansker to withhold his advice. Despite his apparent omniscience elsewhere in the story, the narrator does not speak with an authoritative tone here, perhaps because Melville wishes to emphasize the impenetrable nature of the problems associated with evil and its perpetuation among men.