Skip to main content
Hide Articles List

8 articles on this Page



THE HOME SECRETARY AND THE OPPOSITION. On Saturday last Mr. CROSS addressed, at Leigh, two separate audiences, and on Tuesday attended a Conservative gathering at Clitheroe, and won three distinct expressions of confidence I and approval. In responding for his health, at the dinner on Saturday evening, Mr. CROSS at once went for" the great chiefs of the Liberal party." Alluding, with much effusion of mock sympathy, to the fact that these remarkable persons were compelled to admit that a revival of trade had set in without waiting for their return to the Treasury bench, the HOME SECRETARY dwelt feelingly upon their lamentable plight. The signs of revival seem," he remarked, rather to have agitated our friends on the other side. They do not quite say they do not like it to come quite so soon, but they would much rather we were out of office when it did como. Perhaps they are rather distressed at not being able, like the harlequin in the play, to show that they have made a great revolution and produced a shower of blessings, and to say, The moment you get the Conservatives out of office, you see what happens.' Whether it is that or not Icannot say, but one thing is certain-I they are very uneasy in their minds." Whereat Mr. CROSS'S auditors gave a corroboratory cheer of a very robust kind. The HOME SECRETARY next made play, in a pointed and penetrating manner, with the eccentric ^performances, oral, epistolary, and Nineteenth-Century-csqua, of Mr. GLADSTONE, Mr. GOSCHEN, and—that Lion Cornique of the Liberal.pariy—Sir WILLIAM HARCOTJRT. Having exposed the absurdity of the Radical complaints, that Parliament should be allowed to sit for more than six years, Mr. CROSS proceeded to poke sly fun at certain suggestions put forward by the Liberals for the alleged benefit of the country at large. Why—asked the right hon. gentleman, adverting to the "six years' complaint aforesaid — should we follow Mr. GLADSTONE'S example and astonish everybody by doing' what it would be extremely wrong to do ? Mr. GLADSTONE'S dissolution was, inherently, not such a success as to court Conservative imitation. It was, undoubtedly, the best thing Mr. GLADSTONE could have done. It was • a magnificent political example of the adage, Quern Deus DUlt perdere prius demented. It placed the Conservatives in power. It stopped the blundering and plundering." It gave rest to harassed tradesmen and peace to embarrassed Liberals. It stemmed the current of Radical demolition. It suddenly and sharply undeceived the complacent continental statesmen who were beginning to regard England as played out" and effete. But it was anything save a success from the Gladstonian point of view. It so affected the EZ-PREMIER that he at once elected to "rest," omitting, however, to be "thankful," and thus failing to carry out Earl RUSSELL'S comfortable advice in its entirety. It disgusted moderate Liberals. It disorganised the Liberal party. It disorganised the once formidable Gladstonian host into a number of small troops, each commanded by some hobby-riding zealot, morn dangerous to his party "■—if he could be said to have a party—than to his foes. It gave a stimulus to the sale of post-cards. It flooded the editors of the Contemporary Review and the Nineteenth Century with a vast confluence of involved and ambiguous "copy." It filled the photographertf windows with the counterfeit presentments of an eminent statesman standing, with eloquent shirt-sleeves and persuasive axe, over a disestablished tree. It taught the young idea that it was possible to rest" theoretically while practically working with increased vigour and severity. It administered a "cold shower; bath" to an eccentric politician, and gave Eng- land a chance of recovering her waning prestige and enjoying not peace only, but also "peace with honour."







SATUUDA October 1;3-9.