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EXIT SIR JOHN.
EXIT SIR JOHN. Sir J. D. Rees is to relinquish his repre- sentation of the Montgomery Borough. On personal grounds many will regret his decision. Few can be surprised. It is but the inevitable evolution of a political mind fastened to circumstances which restricted the scope of its independence. Sir John is confessedly an indifferent party man." My fellow countrymen/' he says, are my constituents." Hence the difficulty of adapt- ing his singular open mindedness to the principles and policies of Liberalism. Occa- sional dashes of Liberal waywardness we ascribed to the judicial habit, and to his particular conception of things born of administrative experience in other countries and under quite different conditions. His personality reflected the exotic it ap- peared absolutely unrelated to the emotion- al race from which he sprung-sentiment he has repeatedly declared is the sworn foe ef business"—and this alien manner ac- counted for the difficulty he felt in ingra- tiating himself even with the Liberals of these Boroughs until riper acquaintance produced a mutual understanding. But these considerations apart, Sir John was never a robust Liberal. He struggled to be one and failed. His memorable Welshpool deliverance showed a disquieting instability on the principle of Free Trade, a loveless attachment to a party of progressive Social- ism, and a marked degree of respect for the House of Lords, which his constituents by no means appreciated. These striking de- partures from party principles brought him to book, and his explanations, which protested a misconception of his real meaning, only partially assuaged the very natural feelings of disappointment with the representative of an advanced Liberal constituency. He had disturbed the Liberal confidence, and it is not too much to say that his victory in January last was due more to party loyalty than to a liking for his somewhat shaky hold of Liberal policy. The constituency will welcome the opportunity at this election of fighting for the return of a candidate in fuller sympathy with its views and aspirations. We are grateful to Sir John for the fidelity with which he discharged his Parliamentary duties, and the various Boroughs are ap- preciative of the personal attention he so willingly gave to the advancement of their particular interests. Let us now proceed to a consideration of the reasons given by the Borough Member for his retirement. Never an admirer of Mr Uoyd George, nor a professed disciple of his democratic doctrines, Sir John now pours the vials of his scorn upon the Welsh Chancellor. This will, doubtless, bring him redief while hurting nobody.. Our Member was always most oratorically brilliant in oafitigation, and least inspiring in the treatment of questions upon which his countrymen are enthusiastic. We prefer to pass by this personal detraction with the single remark that it is hardly worthy of the retiring member. Sir John's main reason for deserting the Liberal party is his assumption that a single Chamber and a Home Rule election is to be rushed." Upon what does he found this assumption ? Oan he justify it by the utterance of any Liberal leader ? Is it warranted by any semblance of suggestion in the Veto Reso- lutions ? On the contrary, is it not an established fact, known to every intelligent person, that no thought of abolishing the Second Chamber has ever been entertained or expressed by responsible members of the Liberal party ? The Irish members will, of course, demand Home Rule, as they have done at every successive election, but the idea of a single chamber election is a mere phantasy of Sir John's imagination. The suggestion is neither just to his own intel- ligence nor generous to the Prime Minister. On the question of the House of Lords, Sir John has somersaulted completely. A House which has "played an honourably part in the history of our country should not, he declares, "be prevented from re- ferring a Finance Bill to the country, for it is evident that a Budget may be packed with politics, or may for other reasons be such as the electors should expressly approve." Let us turn to Sir John's election address with which he courted the confidence of these Boroughs in January last. Therein we read that he regrets the rejection of the Budget as a violent departure from well- established precedent, whereby the financial supremacy of the House of Commons is over- thrown. I regard the present claim of the House of Lords to be wholly at variance with the spirit of the Constitution,. and consider that a reform of the Second Chamber is an imperative necessity." If he had added but I cannot trust this re- form to the Liberal party," he would have to-day saved himself the trouble of tender- ing his resignation. What he now regards as a reasonable claim he denounced as H sophistry to his constituents, and volun- teered to "fight it to the death." "I am for untaxed food," he concluded in that address, "religious equality, social reform, and the constitutional position of the House of Commons." If he had explained that his conception of social reform was opposed to that of Mr Lloyd George, he would have spared us the unrequited trouble of voting ier him. "This has been a great triumph for Free Trade it has also been a great vindication of the rights of the House of Commons we Are not to have our food taxed." These were the shouts of Sir John, the victor, from a balcony in Newtown, in answer to the cheers of his loyal supporters. Where does he stand to-day in regard to the rights of the Commons, to Free Trade, to Welsh Disestablishment ? He has turned his back upon them all. Although repudiating Free Trade as a heaven-sent system, he regarded it as the best suited to our exceptional con- ditions. Now he would experiment by cautious gradual taxation of manufactures, and by giving reciprocal preference to our Colonies, without, however, raising the price of food for the masses," believing em- ployment to be more important than cheap- ness. What an astonishing transformation of attitude in the short time that has elapsed since last election! Defending his Welfihpool speech-which he said had been mirted-he repeatedly affirmed the view that Free Trade was essential to the commercial prosperity of this country, whatever benefits it gave to others; he opposed Tariff Reform chiefly because it could not be adopted without a protective tax upon agricultural products, which would mean dearer bread, and, to quote his own words, he had told his Tariff Reform friends that he could not see how their policy would wash." As for increased em- ployment under Protection, he scouted that idea in his election address, which stated: "I cannot consent to a certain increase in the cost of the necessaries of life, in exchange for which the consumer is offered the vague promise of more certain employ- ment, which both theory and experience disprove." Where now, too, is his vaunted enthusi- asm for Welsh Disestablishment, in the cause of which he never allowed us to for- get that thrice he voted against the Govern- ment in order to protest the desire of Welshmen for that long delayed measure ? Favoured by the ballot, he even ventured to force Welsh Disestablishment upon the House against its rules. He was all for equality in the sphere for religion" out of the conviction that it was as important as equality before the law," and promised that if elected he would adhere to the same policy." Recall his words: "I con- tinue to think that the Free Churches should occupy in no respect a position of inferiority as compared with that of the Established Church in Wales." But now his ill-restrained ardour for religious equal- ity in Wales has been damped by the re- port of the Welsh Church Commission. His views are under reconstruction. What remains to be said of our Mem- ber's renunciations ? Following upon the party inquiry into his disquieting speech at Welshpool, we wrote that If from these great causes there was any attempted re- trogression on the part of the Borough Member we should instantly assail him. Mr Rees has fully assured us of his un- swerving attachment to Liberalism and of his fixity of faith in Free Trade, and there- fore he is reasonably entitled to claim our continued confidence and support. But we must give him plainly to understand that in these Boroughs the slightest wobbling on Free Trade or divergence from distinct Liberal principles will not be permitted." That assurance has not long endured, and now we bid him good-bye.
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE?
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE? TRADESMEN in Montgomeryshire, and others commercially related, must be vexed by the prospect of Christmas busi- ness seriously disturbed by a December election. Which party shall they blame for this grievance ? The answer to that question lies in another. Is a general election necessary to determine the con- stitutional issue ? Turning back the files of the Express,' we find this passage in the speech delivered by Lord Lansdowne on the night of the Budget's passage through the Upper House: "The Prime Minister announced to the country that the Government would not resume office, and would not hold office, unless they could secure "the safeguards which experience shows to be necessary for the legislative ability and honour of the party of progress.' That intimation attracted very great attention, and it is no exaggeration to say that the general election was, in a great measure, fought upon that declaration." Therein we have a clear admission from! the leader of the Tory Peers that the Lords' Veto was the chief issue before the country last January. In face of that admission, how can Lord Lansdowne consistently put up a plea for the rejection of the Veto Resolutions, which confessedly have been sanctioned by the electorate? Perhaps, if we had only Lord Lansdowne to deal with, an election would have been avoided. One remembers how his sympathies towards one or two Liberal measures were overpowered by the more aggressive Tory leaders. On this occasion these gentry are endeavouring, by some insincere show, of amending the Veto Resolutions, and a professed regard for the reformatory plan of Lord Rosebery, to cast the responsibility for an unwelcome election upon the Government. Of course, they shrink from an election with the House of Lords as the leading issue. Not long ago Lord Milner frankly said he should be sorry if the Unionist party were to attempt to fight the next election on the constitutional issue alone." He and other Tory chiefs know well enough that on the Lords' question the people are against them. Why, then, should there be an election ? Because they have nothing more to lose, and even a remote hope of winning by diverting the issue.
A CITIZENS' BATTLE j i IN…
A CITIZENS' BATTLE j IN MONTGOMERYSHIRE. How do the citizens of Montgomeryshire view the approaching Parliamentary elec- tion ? Do they fully realise the nature of the reference that will be made to them ? Are they sufficiently alive to the fact that their rights as citizens have been chal- lenged ? Is it necessary that the working man should be told that upon the result of this election depends the permanent estab- lishment of his title to a real voice in the government of the country he loves to a vote that will count in the determination of causes and policies according as he re- gards them, and to the practical assertion of all that the rank of citizenship confers upon him ? At any rate, it is well he should clearly understand the serious and vital responsibility which attaches to his vote on this occasion. Ordinarily, personalities ap- peal successfully to voters whose political thinking is least coloured by partyism, and there is also a considerable proportion of electors who will not sacrifice con- venience to go to the poll. This time, if he values his citizenship, and has any real eoncern for the birthright of those that are I to follow him, every worker will enter I upon the contest as a man proud of his in- dividual independence, conscious of his civil rights, equally with the coronetted landlord, and determined to maintain them. For, verily, this is to be a citizen's battle. At the last election the fiscal question came first and above and beyond all things, though Free Trade Churchmen and Tories must have been distraught by the per- plexity of voting aright. There is no such difficulty to-day, because the issue is single and plain. The House of Lords stands out in all its insufferable tyranny. In this home of political liberty, no House of Com- mons is to be allowed to exist unless it meets with the approval of the Tory Peer- age. The chosen representatives of the people, if they are Liberal, are to be per- mitted to assemble only on sufferance, and be dismissed at will by a pack of aristo- crats, who, representing nobody but them- selves, are yet the ready tools of Toryism, which represents their material interests. In the words of Mr Winston Churchill: To submit to such pretensions would be unworthy of free men. To fetter and en- feeble the House of Commons and to exalt the control of the non-elective, hereditary House is to degrade the franchise and to make every vote worth less than it was before. The plain man's whole political status depends upon his vote." This tyranny is no figment of the imagination. Neither is it momentary tyranny. The Tory Whip has proclaimed it from the very housetops. Whether," he declares, we have a majority or are in the minority, the fact remains that we shall govern the House of Commons and the policy of the country." Language could not speak plainer. In other words, though the people of this country may pack the House of Commons with Liberal members, a non- elected chamber of, high-born Tories will laugh them to scorn. Such a state of affairs, viewed apart from its tyrannical character, is contrary to the very spirit of our democratic constitution. But we are coming to grips with this tyranny, and we are not going to relax that grip until it commands a surrender. Lord Lansdowne realises our determination. He would avoid the grip by conceding complete financial control to the Commons. That right the country has already vindicated. It de- mands more, and, in the words of Mr Asquith, it is reasonably this-that the power of veto presently possessed by the Lords shall be so limited in its exercise as to secure the predominance of the con- sidered will of the House of Commons within the lifetime of a single Parliament." The Veto Resolutions have been addressed to the Lords by an historical majority of the Commons. Lord Lansdowne would not reject, but simply amend them, and Lord Rosebery-once the most democratic of Peers—would trifle the time away by pro- posals of trumpery reforms. But a thor- ough going Liberal Government has no in- clination to employ itself any longer in labours resembling those of the time in the Greek Tartarus, of pouring water for ever in the same bottomless buckets, and walking the same wearisome path after the same recoiling shores.
FACTS TO PONDER.
FACTS TO PONDER. Our House of Lords has no parallel among modern nations. It is an anachron- ism, because it exists centuries beyond its time. Unaffected by public opinion, it cannot be permitted any longer to hold a place in a democratic constitution. Talk of anomalies What greater anomaly than this ? Such an abnormity must not exist in a nation of free people. During the forth- coming election we shall hear of the Liberal intent to completely abolish the Second Chamber. They lie abominably who adopt this electioneering tactic. The veto resolu- tions are not ambiguous. Liberalism stands for a Second Chamber. So long as party government endures a Second Chamber is necessary. But what Liberals demand is an, impartial Second Chamber, composed of men who have been tried and tested in the management of affairs, representative men who can feel the pulse of public opinion, not an assembly of hereditary Peers without a vestige of responsibility. Does our present House of Lords reflect that character ? Has it improved its character since Mr Chamber- lain denounced it as an assembly which "protects every abuse and shelters every privilege, evades justice and delays reform, which is arbitrary without judgment and arrogant without knowledge, which spoils, delays, and even rejects measures demanded by the public voice, passed after due dis- cussion by the majority of the people's House?" What truer description does it bear to-day ? What is it to-day other than what Mr Chamberlain saw it and damned it as a mere branch of the Tory caucu a mere instrument of the Tory organisation ? Yes, it is something more. Its oligarchal character has been intensified. The late Lord Salisbury scouted the very idea of the I JJOrtIS amending a finance bill and thus "creating a deadlock from which there is no escape." Recognising the constitutional usage, he told us that the House of Lords takes no charge whatever in that which is the most important part of the annual and constant business of every legislative body, viz., the provision of funds by which the public service is to be carried on." From 1906 till as late as 1908 Mr Balfour continually declared that "it is the House of Commons and not the House of Lords which settles uncontrolled our financial system," otherwise, he added, the whole executive machinery of the country would be brought to a standstill." And that is precisely what came to pass. So long as the working people bore the bulk of financial burdens budgets passed without murmur. Once they tapped a source of taxation hitherto unexploited-the taxation of luxu- ries-these lordly constitutionalists tossed aside their coronets, closed their fists of sordid selfishness, stopped the national sup- plies, brought the whole executive machi- nery of the country to a stanstill," and damned the consequences." With the consequences they are now face to face. Every wage earning, taxpaying man in Mont- gomeryshire is invited not only to pronounce upon this unmasked selfishness, but to de- fend and vindicate his political rights. To whatever party belonging, his political citizenship is challenged. Let him not for- get that political independence is greater far than party ascendancy. Socially, materially, and in other important respects, the bright- ness and happiness of the years to come depend in no small measure upon the vote which he casts in the coming contest.
SEEN AND HEARD.
SEEN AND HEARD. Hotting tztuuto, nor ast down okught In maIi8e. Siaiiruu. It seems but yesterday that we were in the trough of political electioneering, with the colours flaunting our respective prin-o ciples, and our hearts beating with alter- nating confidence and doubt. Cheers of victory, mingled with the rancorous notes of defeat, still echo in our ears, and Rad and Tory have scarce smoothed down their; ruffled feathers and laughed away the bitterness of their temporary feud, when they are summoned forth once more to the fighting field. This election comes close to the season of peace and goodwill, and the fact suggests that not a little ought to be done to strip the contest of much of the accustomed acrimony and bitterness. It will be a hard battle. Let us be inspired by, principles alone, not the gratification of personalities. A few months of political listlessness have proved but the lull before the storm. All the portents on the political horizon: make for a great momentous battle next month, and the issue, I doubt not, is in- '■ telligently comprehended by the working people in Montgomeryshire. Scatter their red herrings as they may, trumpet the Ger- man invasion bogey as they will, election- eering patriots will not succeed this time in diverting the electoral mind from the reality that political liberty is at stake. Shall Peers or People govern ? Is the franchise to remain the right of the worker, or is it to be reduced to a farce ? Mustl the expressed wish of the country be con- tinually subject to the scornful repudiation of irresponsible aristocrats ? These are the questions which ask conscientious answer of every voter as the battle clouds lower. Already we see sign of Tory terror, lest the people realise the actual situation.. To direct their attention away from the arrogant and high-handed actions of the Peers, they are busy manufacturing se- ductive cries. A weak navy and the Ger- man flag hoisted over London! Shades of Nelson! The British navy and British bluejackets, with a mighty lot to spare, would sweep the Germans off the seas. The Germans don't want war, and the Tories know it, but the scare ia a capital electioneering dodge. We are, of course, expected to forget that Toryism gave Helligoland to the Germans, who are now, making it a great naval base. These be your patriots! For the rural workers they have a great scheme of peasant proprietary —a little grander than anything the Tory Government accomplished or even contem- plated during those ten years of pifice, when they dedicated but six hours to the consideration of agricultural affairs. Small- holder proprietors! Why not make the big farmers, too, their own landlords ? Ehl This Tory profession of interest in the smallholder is but a death-bed repent- ance. All this manoeuvring will not dismiss from the minds of Montgomeryshire, men the pertinent question, "Why should Lord Powis politically count for more than all of us massed together f Do you, my readers, believe that in kicking out the Budget, the Lords weie sincerely anxious to have your calm and sober opinion of i11 P Aa Mr Lloyd George said, you are not South Sea Islanders you have learnt to read and think. And dftn it be forgotten that while you were con- sidering your verdict, these impartially- minded Peers stumped the country, and from an hundred platforms denounced a democratic Budget as the instrument ef a plundering, traitorous Welshman P Nor did they stop there. If they wanted your conscientious opinion, why did they seek to terrify working men and coerce their dependents into voting against the Bud- get P Ducal grandees, lords and squires showed us the way to stoop to the meanest forms of intimidation. Should the Budget become law they threatened to dismiss workmen, reduce wages, cut down the pen- sions of their age-worn employees, and tighten their purse strings against the call of charity. These be the men who shame- lessly profess an unbiased view of legis- lation. While the working man ungrudingly con- tributes his quota to the extra demands of the Budget, the lordly castle, its grounds and its shootings must escape their duto taxation. Mr Lloyd George has shown us that the Marquis of Bute's castle and grounds in the centre of Cardiff figure in the valuation roll at less than a tailor's shop round the corner. It is the same all over the country. If these lordly heredita- ments carried their proper burden of taxa- tion, there would be less to pay by others. A vote for Toryism at this election will be a vote to enable the Peers to levy taxation and spend the revenue of the State just as they think fit, to impose a tax on food, to reject every Liberal Budget and every piece of Liberal legislation which ia the slightest degree affects their own in- terests, and to throw out a Liberal Gov- ernment that dares even to look over the hedge upon these noble preserves. Every Liberal who, from governing cir- cumstances or for personal reasons, votes Tory, robs his franchise of its value. Help Toryism to win, and lie need not care whether he engage in future elections or not. The working man has been chal- lenged to vindicate his political birth- right. Will he, man-like, rise and defend his political hearth and home, or go whinnying to heel at the whip crack of that lordly crew? I feel almost ashamed to inscribe a question which suggests the possibility of such lamentable human weak- ness in these days. In the words of that immortal statesman, who charged us in his last speech to go forward with a: reform of the House of Lords :-T-" Be in- spired with the belief that life is a great and noble calling; not a mean and grovelling thing, that we are to shuffle through as we can, but an elevated and lofty destiny." LUKB SHAM*.
SARN. Jaet received a fine lot of Ladies* useful Box Calf Boots, with stout soles, for Winter wear; prioe, 7/9; get a pair, aad be oomfortablft. ft.* BICUBD8, 30, Bridge-street, Newtown.
TERRORISING WELSHPOOL TORIES.
TERRORISING WELSHPOOL TORIES. The chiefs of the Welshpool Tory Club are up in arms. They scent treason in the camp, and henceforth traitors are to be summarily drummed out. The fact that information of the club's secret doings should filter through the Express' to the public suggests a measure of disloyalty which must be visite4 by stern punish- ment. So peremptory expulsion has been I decided upon. And if the threat of ex- communication be not sufficient to in- duce a faithful observance of club law, a ducking" in the canal ranks among the remedies officially prescribed for the cor- rection of the mischievous tale-teller. Who knows but that the ducking" might eventually be transferred to that pellucid part of the Severn where the untreated waters of the town tumble into the sover- eign stream ? To the angry chiefs we would suggest a much simpler and more effective method of tying the tongue of the traitor. In the local museum they will find a scold's bridle." Let a prayerful peti- tion be addressed to the Museum Commit- tee for a 21 years' lease of this formidable iron instrument, and have it hung up in that secret chamber of Toryism, where the people of Welshpool have their representa- tives so kindly chosen and thrust upon them. This terrorising relic of olden times would surely effect the desired purpose. A SCANDAL." Some pitiful reading is contained in our report of the clerical proceedings at Welsh- pool on Wednesday, which had for their purpose the support of the St. Asaph Diocesan Clergy Sustentation Fund, and the fixing of a minimum stipend of £ 200, to- gether With the provision of a pension at the age of 65. In this diocese, as, no doubt, in most others, there are extremes of what might be called wealth and poverty, ranging on the one hand from KSO a week down to the ecclesiastical sweating case of £64 a year. It is true that in many par- sonages there is a hard struggle to main- tain appearances and meet numerous calls on slender stipends, for Churchpeople, as Lord Powis frankly admits, live on the en- dowments of their forefathers. Such a state of affairs is not wrongly described by Mr Lawrence Brodrick as a scandal to one of the richest churches in the world." Churchpeople require to take a leaf out of the Nonconformist book, in order to realise the meaning of Christian liberality. I believe," says Mr Treasure, that we are the only body of Christians that don't sup- port our own ministers. That is, perhaps, why our subscriptions appear greater, as Churchmen, to hospitals. Nonconformists have to support their own ministers we haven't." And because they haven't, many Churchmen dislike the idea of Disestab- lishment. The younger clergy, who witness this Christian niggardliness, and the un- numbered grievous anomalies of the pres- ent ecclesiastical system, are no opponents of Disestablishment, under which the plums are scattered by favour and preferment largely governed by influence. Little won- der there is a dearth of applications for holy orders. Talking of anomalies, why should hundreds of pounds of tithe collected in Welshpool district go to Christ Church, Oxford ? Why is it that the Rector of Castle Caereinion should draw £80 a year in tithe from Welshpool parish, which lies without his allotted spiritual sphere P
RETIREMENT OF THE BOROUGH…
RETIREMENT OF THE BOROUGH MEMBER. Afraid of a Single Chamber Election. RENUNCIATION OF HIS ELECTION PLEDGES. Feeling in the Constituency. "Heard the news P J.D. » has resigned! In this fashion the resignation of Sir J. D. Rees was circulated throughout the Bor- ough on Friday morning. It transpired that the hon. member had written a letter to Mr Hugh Lewis, the president of the Boroughs Liberal Association, in which he stated his, inability to continue longer with the Liberal party. Confirmation of this came with the London 'Times,, which con- tained the full text of his letter. Needless to say, prominent politicians momentarily stepped aside from business pursuits to dis- cuss the situation with their neighbours. Singularly enough, while Tories condoned with Liberals, Liberals smilingly congratu- lated each other. They had never been satisfied with the political shiftiness of their member, though recognising his usefulness to the constituency, and there was no affected pleasure in their prospect of a position which will enable them, at least, to secure a representative after their own heart. From all the Boroughs come reports of Liberal satisfaction, and of increased hope of winning the forthcoming election with a thorough-going democratic candi- date, concerning whose political mind and convictions there will be no breath of sus- picion. The name of this candidate will probably be announced after the meeting of the Liberal Association, to be held at Newtown on Wednesday. THE BOROUGH MEMBER'S LETTER. The Borough Member's letter is as fol- lows :— My dear Lewis,-The Conference, from which I hoped to the last some measure of agreement/ would result, has failed, and the Chancellor of the ^Exchequer and the Home Secretary having already issued their elec- tioneering addresses, I must assume that their leader will follow, and that a Single Chamber and Home Rule election is to be rushed. I have always thought that there are two spirits in the Liberal Party, one good and one bad, and from the telegram sent by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to the York- shire Observer,' it is, evident that the latter will be unchained, and the coming election fought on what I cannot but regard as practically a Single Chamber issue, which 1 not only cannot support, but am bound to strenuously oppose. Mr Lloyd George telegraphed:— Having in vain used every endeavour through conciliatory methods to win equal political rights for all Britons, we are now driven to fight for fair play in our native land. We repudiate the claim put forward by 600 Tory Peers that they were born to control 45,000,000 of their fellow citizens" [345,000,000 outside the United Kingdom are characteristically forgotten] and to trample upon their wishes for the good Government of their own country." "SATAN REPROVING SIN." This, like all the Chancellor of the Ex- chequer's extra Parliamentary utterances, is grossly exaggerated and unfair, and his persistent and violent denunciations of British landlords cruelly misrepresent and I malign a class which performs more unselfish and unremunerated public duty, and spends a larger proportion of its resources upon its neighbours, than any other with which, in any part of the world, I have become acquainted. Landowners are now submitting to a severe strain, and it amazed me, I confess, in view of the Chancellor of the Exchequer's political record, to read that at the recent Land Valuation Conference he solemnly stated that people evading laws they dis- liked were on the highway to anarchy." It is a classic instance of Satan reproving sin. I cannot join this Daniel come to judg- ment in his violent and indiscriminate abuse of members of the Upper House, which has played an honourable and patri- otic part in the history of our country, though I am convinced that reasoned and temperate changes in its constitution are at this stage inevitable and such changes it is willing and anxious to make. I cannot, however, agree that the Second Chamber should be precluded from referring a Finance Bill to the country, for it is evi- dent that a Budget may be packed with politics, or may, for other reasons, be such as the electors should expressly approve. It is, moreover, impossible to conceal the fact that if this election is rushed, and the power of the Second Chamber impaired or destroyed, Home Rule for Ireland, to which, as a loyal citizen of the Monarchy of the United Kingdom, I am opposed, will also be rushed, nor can any man, however hard he may try to wink, be oblivious of the fact that funds collected from avowed enemies of Britain abroad, now supply the sinews of war for the coercion of Britons at home. "THE SATISFACTION OF SOCIALISTS." I have, moreover, no confidence that un- der Mr Lloyd George's administration the proceeds of taxes which press very hardly on certain classes of industries will, in fact, be devoted to the defence of our country, and will not be used for the appeasement of agitators and the satisfaction of Social- ists, like Mr Keir Hardie, who disgrace England in the eyes of Europe by advocat- ing at international conferences general strikes, in order to paralyse the arms of their fatherland in time of war, a proposal dismissed with the scorn and contempt it merited, even by the Socialists of other countries. And although I have greatly admired the statesmanlike administration of Lord Morley, I strongly deprecate the transfer of responsibility for the Government of India from Calcutta to Whitehall, lest in future days, with less eminent and patriotic ministers, the worst elements in Parlia- ment, the itinerant agitator, the breathless philanthropist, the impatient idealist, the heedless altruist, the ardent faddist, and the political week-ender may prevail. I dread the encouragement given to those classes which make our country detested in Europe by their ill-advised incursions into a sphere which they are little calculated to adorn, and so far as lies within them, leave no stone unturned to impair that Imperial unity, which it is our sacred duty to maintain. The very able and patriotic Minister for War has, for the last five years, worked under perpetual opposition and discourage- ment, and so has the First Lord of the Admiralty, though had he not been inca- pacitated by illness, he might well have reproved his subordinate, the Civil Lord, who has just stated that the pre-Dread- nought ships are worthy to stand in the battle line," a statement calculated to mis- lead the uninformed on a vital issue, and contrary to the deliberate statements made in Parliament by the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs. FREE TRADE NOT FROM HEAVEN. Again, the Under Secretary in the Home Department, a subordinate, it is true, but straws show the direction of the wind, he who, unrebuked by his leaders, said on the platform "that any criticism of our Navy should be on account of our excessive strength rather than on account of our weakness," has just now spoken of the "cant talked about putting country before party and his chief, the Home Secre- tary, has, in his electioneering manifesto, made what are, in my opinion, reckless and wholly unsustainable charges against the House of Lords. The answer to his diatribe is that the Government lies under no sort of necessity for advising a disso- lution of Parliament, and if it believes in the excellence of its own administration, is behaving with mere petulance, to at- tribute no worse motive, in throwing up the sponge because it cannot score every point. Is the Gaul at the gates, or is Van Tromp sweeping the Thames, that the whole country must be thrown into the turmoil of a second general election in the year, in order that Home Rulers and Con- stitution wreckers should without giving time for reflection have their wicked way ? On the fiscal question you know I have already stated on the platform, after a re- cent visit to Germany, that the accounts of the poverty and unwholesome food of German workmen are fairy tales, and that they-whether by reason of or in spite of Protection, I do not know—are at least as prosperous as the same classes in the United Kingdom. I repeat I do not regard what we call Free Trade as a scientific system which came down from Heaven, and believing employment to be more im- portant than cheapness, I would experi- ment by cautiously and gradually taxing manufactures, and by giving reciprocal preferences to our Colonies, without, how- ever, raising the price of food for the masses, of which I do not think they can be ex- pected to approve. I am no Food Taxer, and, indeed, would reduce the taxes at present levied upon food. ALARMED BY SOCIALIST ATTITUDE. ,.Jhe7iews 1 have expressed so far do not differ from my former platform utterances, but in regard to Disestablishment, I con- fess that the report of the Welsh Church Commission, the first and only authorita- tive enquiry, portions of which, no doubt authentic, have been prematurely pub- lished, compels me to reconsider the views I have hitherto expressed. The Socialist attitude towards private property, condoned, if not encouraged, by certain Ministers, increasingly alarms me. The poor man's mite is held by precisely the same law and title as the rich man's million, and there is no difference in. prin- ciple between robbing a man, or a class, and despoiling a church or any other cor- porate body. Finally, I am an indifferent party man, for my country is my party, and my fellow- countrymen are my constituents. In Parlia- ment I have always earnestly endeavoured to benefit the Borough electors, wholly re- gardless of their political views, and nothing in life has iven me so much Pleasure as to wtth^n SUch services as lay within my power. I deeply deplore that I cannot, in view of the considerations I have set out, con- tinue to represent my Liberal friends, who have been kind and indulgent to the last degree, and from whom I part with the great- est regret and with an affection which will not on my part be at all diminished by the rupture of our present political relations.- Yours sincerely, J. D. Rms. Travellers' Club, S.W., November 17th, 1919,
NEWTOWN POLICE COURT
NEWTOWN POLICE COURT A special Juvenile Police Court was held on Friday morning. The magistrates on the Bench were Mr Edward Elwell and Mr W. H. B. Swift. LARCENY OF IRON. The charge brought against Dennis Williams (12), Frolic-street, and William Jones (15), Frolic-street, was that they did, on October 27th, in the parish of Mochdre, feloniously steal and carry away a quantity of iron, valued at Is 5d, the property of David Lloyd, miller, Stepaside. Mochdre. Mr R. George appeared for the two defendants. David Lloyd, miller, Stepaside, Mochdre, said that on the date mentioned he missed a quantity of iron from an old building by the Walkmill. The door of the building was only fastened by a link. He discovered that the iron was missing on Friday, Oct. 28th, about 1.0. He found the door open. A good deal of the iron was missing. The iron consisted of bolts and nuts. He informed the police at Newtown on Saturday. Witness identified the iron produced by P.S. Owen as his property. He valued it as old iron at about Is 5d. The building was on the tide of a bridle road. By Mr George: The property did not belong to his father. A house was attached to the building. He went into the house pretty often, because he stored timber there. Neither of the doors of the building were locked. It might appear unoccu- pied to boys. He did not see the boys. By the Bench: His house was five minutes' walk from the place where the iron was stored. Jane Edwards, wife of Edward Edwards, plate- layer, Brook-terrace, Stepaside, said that on Thursday, Oct. 27th, she saw the defendants pass her house sometime in the afternoon. They had a little truck with them, and they went in the direction of the Walkmill. There was something on the truck. About three-quarters of an hour later they returned with the truck. She did not notice any difference. By P.S. Owen They would have just time to get to the old building. She could not tell what was in the truck under the bag. By Mr George: Her house was at the end of a terrace of six houses. The boys did not look as if they were going on a stealing expedition. She thought they were going to Mr Lloyd, the Mill. Isaiah Arnold, marine store dealer, Frolic-street, Newtown, said that on the day in question the two defendants came to him in the evening, and he bought a quantity of iron from them. It weighed a little over 1 owt., and he gave Is 5d for it. He asked them where they got it from, and they said, From Mochdre." On the follow- ing Saturday P.S. Oweia came to his store, and picked out and took possession of the iron which witness bought from the defendants. P.S. Owen said that on the Saturday, in conse- quence of information he received at the Police Station, he went to Isaiah Arnold's warehouse in Frolic-street. He made enquiries as to what iron he had bought during the week, and picked out the iron produced, and took possession of it. When he spoke to the two defendants they denied that they had stolen the iron. Williams said he got the iron out of a brook at Mochdre, and Jones said he knew nothing about it, and that he was not out of the town on Thursday. Mr George, addressing the Bench, submitted there was no felonious intent on the part of the boys, and asked them to dismiss the case. Dennis Williams said that he went with William Jones for old iron and bones. They gotaeack and borrowed a truck from Davies's corn stores. They went up to Nantoer and found some of the iron produced. He saw Mr. David Worthington and asked him if he had got any iron, and then went up to Mochdre, past the Brook Terrace, with a bag, the truck, and some iron. They went up to this old house by a brook, and found some iron in the grass and in the brook near to the shed. They came back to town and took the iron to Mr. Arnold, and told him that they had got it from Mochdre. He did not know that he was doing wrong. ° By P.S. Owen: Until they went to Mochdre they did not know where this iron was. They were going up the lane and saw the iron in the brook by the ahed. They did not go into the building. Wm. Ernest Jones corroborated. They did not, he said, steal the pieces of trough produced. They got it from Nantoer. They went up to Mochdre. They told Mr. Arnold that they had got it from Moohdre. By P.S. Owen: When he asked him about hit movements on Thursday he thought he said Fri- day, and told him that he was not up at Mochdre. He was at Mochdre on Thursday. By Mr. George: He did not knew what P.S. Owen was asking the questions for until the fol- lowing Saturday evening. The Chairman said they had give* the case their careful attention and thought that the charge was proved of feloniously taking the iron. It was a very serious offence for boys of their age to commit, and if they did it when they got older they would get into serious trouble. They would be bound over in £ 5 to be of good behaviour for twelve months, and be under the supervision of D. C. C. Williams, probation officer. STOLE A PAIR OF BOOTS. William Williams (14), Skinners'-street, and Thomas Morgan (12) Skinners-street, were charged with stealing a pair of boots value 10s, belonging TLT I?*1011188 Evans, waggoner, Groat Brimmon. Mr R. George appeared tor William Williams. D.C.C. Williams said that it was a case where the lads went on an errand to Great Brimmon. Whilst the housekeeper went into another room for a minute the boys took the boots. The house- keeper thought she saw the boots under one of the defendants' arms, and afterwards found the boots missing. Lucy Jones, housekeeper at Great Brimmon said on Tuesday, November 8th, the two defend- ants came to the house with some meat from the town between eleven and twelve o'clock. After they had delivered the meat they asked for some- thing to drink. She went into the pantry and brought them some beer. She was away about five minutes getting the beer. As they were leaving she thought she saw something like a pair of boots under one of the defendants' arm. She afterwards found that the boots were missing, and called the waggoner and told him about it. When the defendants came there they had no other parcel except the meat. The waggoner usually left his boots in the kitchen. By D.C.C. Williams: She did not see anybody take the boots. Thomas Evans, .waggoner at Great Brimmon, said that at the time he was at the farm but not in the house. He had left a pair of boots on the boiler in the kitchen. The housekeeper called him, and he went into the back kitchen and found his boots missing. He bought the boots last March for 10s 9d. He went to town and informed the police. The boots produced by P.C. Thomas were his. Edmund Hitchon, clogger, Newtown, said that on the same day the two defendants came to his place before dinner time and offered the pair of boots produced for sale, but he refused to buy them. P C. Thomas said he went to Williams' house in Skinner-street, hut the defendant was not in. The mother asked him what he wanted him for, and said "Something about a pair of boots?" Witness replied "Yes." She brought the boots to him, and said Cf What's the matter; have they been stolen?" He then went to Brimmon, and the waggoner identified the boots. He returned to Williams' home again and saw him, and he made the voluntary statement that he had been to Brimmon with Thomas Morgan with a parcel of meat. They went to the back kitchen and handed the meat to the housekeeper. They asked for something to drink, and she brought some beer. Thomas Morgan took the boots. They went to Mr Hitchon, the clogger, and offered the boots for sale to get money to go to Codman's. Later in the evening witness saw Morgan, and said, I suppose you are the boy who went up to Brimmon and took the boots," and he answered- Yes, I took the boots off the boiler in the back back kitchen. We took the boots to Mr Hitchon to get money to go to Codman's." By Mr George: The statement made by Williams was voluntary. Mr George objected to the manner in which witness spoke to the defendant Morgan. It was not the first time he had done it. It was not the right way to go about it, and if he had done the right thing many of his cases would not have been proved. The Chairman said they had no doubt that the two defendants had combined together to commit the offence. They could deal with them very severely, but they would bind them over in the sum of A5 to be of good behaviour for twelve months, and they would be under the supervision of Probation Officer Williams.