Hide Articles List

8 articles on this Page



--40- HOUSE AND LOBBY MR. LLOYD GEORGES "HUMBLE PIE." (By Gilbert Watson). House of Commons, Westminster. h. Lloyd George, patron of passive resistance, and rebel in general, has had to eat a large portion of humble pie in the House this week. He has been in the habit of collecting income tax before :t was legalised by Parliament until that sturdy friend of individual liberty, Mr. Giteon Bowles, took him before the Courts of J ustice and gave him a salutory le».,on. The Chancellor of the Exchequer lies under the distressing handicap that although he can place his private secretaries in opulent positions in the Civil Service he cannot promote them to the judicial bench. And so Mr. Bowles had a proper trial and Mr. Lloyd George received a legal defeat. As a result the right hon. gentleman had to ask the House of Commons to see him through and to vali- date the collection of income tax in the early part of the financial year before it had been actually sanctioned by Parliament. Naturally the House of Commons was quite prepared to do the right thing, but it was an instructive sight to see the Welsh tighter appealing, as it were, for mercy to his fellow c members. IN CHASTENED MOOD. The truth is Mr. Lloyd George is in a very chastened mood just now. Circumstances have been vey awkward of late. The Marconi difficulties have not dissolved at a breath, and the coming Budget is filling his soul with dread. Ttie national revenue looks as if it has reached high water mark, and if the services of the country are to be properly financed this year, the Chancellor must impose fresh taxation. auch a, step would, of course, be an admission that the People's Budget" was a rank unmitigated failure, that all the land taxes all the increment duties, all the super taxes had availed nothing, that the breakfast table of the working classes still groans under food taxation, and that the land song has been sung in vain. This won1 be a humiliation too deep for words for the Chance" l->r of the Exchequer, and so lie surveys the future is well as the present with gloom and fear. THE MARCONI INQUIRY. The addition of -Sir Frederick Banbury -ind Mr. Butcher to the Marconi Committee has immensely strengthened the inquiry. Members are now antici- pating some lively passages when the fetock Exchange evidence is developed. Sir Frederick is an old city hand," and knows the ins and outs of Throg- morton-street as well as any man. When brokers and jobbers and other interested persons come be- fore the Committee the Member for the City of London can be relied on to bring out every essential point. The House of Commons will certainly re- quire some further light thrown on ttie whole matter before its regains its confidence. I gather that it is more than probable that a full debate will be raised on the whole question before the Session closes, in which the personal issues that arise will be sub- niitted to the decision of the House. THE AIR PERIL. The foreign a.ir peril continues to absorb much I 1 01, attention at St. Stephen's. The boast of a German flying officei- that any of his country's airships could sail to Ireland without a stop, crossing Portsmouth and Plymouth and return by way of the Orkneys and Edinburgh has aroused some alarm, and considerable surprise is expressed at the noncholance of our own Almiralty in face of such a statement. The fooling of alarm at the public indifference of Mr. Winston Churchill and Col. Seelv in the matter is manifesting itself in the shape of innumerable questions on the subject. The aerial Parliamentary group returns again and again to the charge but without avail. Nothing but a German bomb dropped on his head by a German airship is likely to shake the subLime optimism of the First Lord of the Admiralty. j

[No title]