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Glamorgan County Council Election,…

Glamorgan County Council.

Family Notices


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SPARKS FROM THE ANVIL. Br JOE HAMMERSMITH. I hope my fellow-electors will take an intelligent view of the School Board contest. The half-crown rate is a terrible bogey raised by unscrupulous sectari- ans, and the cry of economy" is a deliberate false- hood. What, then, is the real question at issue ? On one side we have the champions of the sectarian schools, and on the other the advocates of State schools. In Wales the Nonconformists are thoroughly sound ou the education question. They do not ask the nation to maintain schools which are but nurseries for their sects. They are satisfied with the schools provided by the community, and teach religion to their children in their own schools at their own j expense Churchmen and Catholics ave not so straight- forward. The State schools are not good enough for them. They must needs go and set up their own schools, and ask the nation to pay for them. It seems to me that ecclesiastic-ism is never conducive to a high form of public honesty. Now me must fight for the State schools, and not on any account allow their efficiency to be diminished. That is the real keynote of the situation. Let every Nonconformist open his eyes as wide as he can, and study the question with intelligent care. Let him beware of the men who go about circulating falsehoods. Nobody seems to pay much heed to the recent pranks of the Wt^tern. Mail, that dear old orgau of alcohol and hysteria. The marvellous election mani- pulated hy that journal in the interests of the liquor traffic has not disturbed the public equilibrium. Things go on much the same as liefore. In my opinion, Mr. Editor, the J/fl-il'¡¡ figures are not worth a tinker's curse. No opportunity was given the other side to lay its case before the electors. The Mail floods the town with hysterical articles and statistics, and then proceeds forthwith to put the matter to the vote. Did we ever hear of an election where only the candidate of one party had issued his address or harangued the multitude'' The question which the electors were asked to answer was couched in a very artful manner. It ought to have been framed in some such way as this: "Is the Sunday Closing Act a failure? If it is. ¡ which remedy would you recommend: ('<) abolition of shebeens, and the bona lide traveller clause, :t more stringent regulation of drink- ing clubs, and the strengthening of the Act generally, or (b) the opening of public-houses during certain hours on Sundays?" Instead uf that the electors were only asked whether the Act, the failure of which was practically taken for granted, should be modified in the direction of Sunday open- iug. Those who held that the Act is a failure, but who would recommend greater stringency as a remedy, were to all intents and purposes disfran- chised. The dominant motive of the Mail seems to be not the reduction of Sunday drinking, but the opening of public-houses on Sunday. The alcohol party have been excellently well served. Fancy taking a poll and leaving Mr. Allen Upward out! The thing is really too absurd. Were it only for this reason the whole bally election is null and void. A resolution was proposed, seconded, and carried at the Pontypridd Guardians to the effect that a guardian, should he feel so inclined, be allowed to address the Board in Welsh. What is the country coming to that such a resolution was required at all? Wo shall soon hear of a resolution giving us per- mission to breathe God's air. Or we sliall hear of a county council in England allowing its memliei-s to speak in English. Are we debarred from using our native tongue without passing resolutions ? It's a crying shame that Welsh guardians, parish, town, district, and county councillors should be compelled to expressed their thoughts iu a tongue that is foreign to them. The Plymouth Cricket Club banquet was a cheerful function. For lack of an ordained minister of the Gospel Mr. Bailey, who was in the chair, acted as his own chaplain, saying grace before meal and returning thanks after. The club is in a flourishing condition, and I hope the forthcoming season will be a prospeious one. Cricket is a magniticent game. Alas tny early education in that respect was sadly neglected. I did handle the bat once, and once only. On that occasion I suddenly became a great astronomer, and dis- f covered millions and millions of stars which no human eye had ever seen before, and no telescopist has ever gazed upon since. At the sight of these countless myriads of heavenly bodies, chasing one another round and round, with incredible rapidity, I became dazed, and when 1 regained consciousness they had all vanished. There I began and ended my studies both in cricket and astronomy, and I have been grateful ever since that the bridge of my nose was not broken. I have always thought the Astronomer lloyal should be called Sir Robert Cricket Ball, so closely is associated with cricket in my world of intellectual conceptions. Still 1 am not so prodigiously ignorant of the game as the Frenchman who gave the definition of it "A man standing behind three sticks, and another man trying to hit him with a round wooden ball." I know better than that anyhow. Even my poor knowledge of it entitles me to say that the game is at once an interesting, enjoyable, and beneficial form of physical exercise. I hope that many Merthyr young men will avail themsehes of Mr. Bailey's kind and hearty invi- tation to go and play on the Pentreoach ground. 1 raise my cap to Mr. Bailey, and beg to inform him that. with all due deference, I ha\e a bone to pick with him. In giving the royal toast at the aliove dinner he deprecated criticism of the royal household expense. To that form of loyalty he is fully entitled to adhere. On that point he and 1 must ague to differ. But he went on to remark that the cost of govern- ment in the United States was four times as heavy as in this country. That may bo i-o. We can easilv understand that the government of a new and vast country like the United States is a more expensive affair than that of an old country like England. There may he countries still more expensive to govern than either. 1 should say that Russia, for example. spends a tiemendous amount every year on its government. But 1 fail to see where the analogy cyme's m. If the United States chooses to spend four times as much money as we do on government, is that a suffi- cient reason for our throwing money away in vain ? The majority of Tories look upon America as an em- bodiment of ;ill the ires and faults which we in Eng- land ought HI guard against. They seldom, if f>ver iiddiicH that country in juMiHealioii of anythiii" here' of hold it up as a ^I'uiou- model for us to follow. But to come still nearer the point. They have a sort of king in the United States whom they call President. He is get on the throne by the voice of the people, and at the end of four years is taken down ugain. The only other difference between him and our sovereign is that be has a great deal of work to do, and exercises immense authority and iafluence. How much do you think he costs hi's country every year ? £10,000, or two-thirds of what we pay a certain parson in this country. Our royal family costs us .€530,000 every year, or considerably over half a million of money. And the crowning heauty of the arrangement is that we get nothing in return for all this expenditure. If a man were to tell me that the people of this country will be satisfied for ever with this state of things, I would simply reply that I didn't believe him. Here's another item that affords material for reflec- tion and food for thought. The first president of the United States, George Washington, was elected in 1789. That is 106 years ago. Assuming that the annual salary was always what it is now, we find that from 1789 to the present day, rovalty" has cost the people of the United States the" sum of £1,060,000. That' 4 big sum, isn't it? But we spend on our royalty*here every twelvemonth one-half as much as they have spent altogether in the United States since the establishment of the republic, 106 years ago. In other words, we spend m two years as much on royalty as they spend in the States in the course of a whole century. That's something to be proud of, eh ? I am glad to tell you, sir, that Mrs. H. has had at least one trouble off her mighty intellect. Of the many weighty and intricate problems that oppressed her brain, one has been completely solved. She had studied this subject in all its aspects, had looked at it from every possible point of view, had caiefullv and minutely examined every fact, figure, and theory bearing on it. But she could find no satisfaction to her weary soul. Now she inclined to one view, now to another. For days and weeks she was pitilessly tossed on the billows of doubt and uncertainty, and her frail bark was almost shattered to pieces. But the desired haven was reached at last, and her storm- tossed vessel sweetly rides at anchor in peace and safety. Yes, the problem has been solved. The problem was that of the outside taps. And what brought light and peace to Mrs. H.'s mind was the fact that both Mr. David Davies and Mr. Dan Thomas were in agreement on the matter. They are authorities on taps, the one negative, the other ;)osi- tive. And when negative and positive come together and combine, there harmony prevails, and no room is left for doubt.