ARTHUR HUMPHREYS-OWEN. LIKE one man the Liberals of the Mont- gomery Boroughs have leaped spontaneously into the great constitutional struggle, and the unexampled enthusiasm with which they have rallied round their popular champion heralds a magnificent victory. The boom of battle finds them ready for a supreme effort. They will fight with splendid unity, loyalty, and determination for the triumph of a great cause, and with an inspiring pride in the gallant and gifted son of Glansevern, who leads them on. Humphreys-Owen is a name which shines upon many a chapter in the modern history of our county, and it will long dwell in the recollection of a com- munity heartily grateful to the noble-minded man who bore it, and who sacrificed him- self for their well-being. That gratitude is deepened and intensified to-day by the coming of the son, who inherits the admir- able traditions of his worthy sire, and is inspired by the democratic principles from which Liberalism draws its strength. More than that, Mr Arthur Humphreys-Owen was obviously born for the heat and turmoil of battle, and finely he is equipped to bear himself throughout this historic campaign. Nature has endowed him with a swift and receptive mind, with the courage of strongly entrenched convictions, with a zest for con- flict in the cause of human betterment, and with a big-hearted ambition to become an officer in the very van of social progress. The "taint of heredity" is set upon him. Grandly he follows in his father's footsteps. Proudly he wears the mantle of an honoured sire. In Parliament he will assuredly add lustre to the family name. Little wonder we at his unanimous selec- tion to fight the battle of Liberalism in this constituency. The brilliant part he played in the party success last January marked him as a future leader of men. No land tax, nor super-tax, could diminish this land- lord's consecrated attachment to Liberalism. As his political principles do not lie in his pocket, the squirearchal screams of despic- able selfishness outraged his keen sense of honourable obligations. With what splendid courage he risked the ties of friendship in a vigorous assault upon the sordid politics of the rich How admirably he exhibited the deep-founded sincerity of his Liberalism and his genuine affection for the advance- ment of the social weal To-day every! working man in these Boroughs recalls with, something more than satisfaction that heroic stand in the interests of the common people, and he is not likely to forget it when within the polling booth he discharges his duty as an intelligent citizen, and at the same time vindicates the titles of his citizenship.
THE CANDIDATES' POLICIES. WE have already referred at some length to the character and attainments of the Liberal candidate. Personally, we write with equal pleasure of Colonel Pryce-Jones. At the last election the Tory press fondled with immense affection one of the many personal tributes we have paid to him, and it is welcome to reproduce that tes- timony to his worth as an exemplary pub- lic citizen, side by side with its own in- famous libel on local Nonconformist min- isters, whom it denounces for "exploiting the sacred names of religion for party political objects, and prostituting their sacred office for the business of party electioneering." But Colonel Pryce-Jones, though professedly sympathetic towards social reform, and at times pretentiously progressive, is allied to a reactionary party, to which, though he once gave it a gentle hint," he has ple4ged his un- swerving support. He may profess now, as he did in that memorable speech at Machynlleth after his defeat in 1906, the necessity for Toryism to adapt itself to those new ideas which have been thrust upon the legislature by something like social volcanoes," but Toryism remains to-day what it always has been party which distrusts the people and has endea- voured to scotch every Liberal social reform that has seen the light. What distinctively do the Liberal and Conservative candidates stand for ? Here are their respective claims upon the men of these Boroughs, who surely cannot tarry over a pronouncement — MB. ARTHUR HUM- PHEETS-OWXW. COL. PBTC): JONES. [ The supremacy of the A, smaller. but thor. people's Parliament, and oqIaly Tory, House of the vindication of the IOrds. fmnohiie. Inebranoe of workmen Taxes on food,elothiM unemployment *nd »ll iMnvie« of t £ and invalidity. household. Electoral refwn. Preservation of the pluel rotor. Religion* equality. The domia&tiou fi the Anglican Chnroh. Reform of the Poor-law N. promise. A volunteer eitizen Comfwl^7 military army. so., so. An efficient navy. A Jingo fleet. Irigb, &otch, and Welsh self-govern. The maintenance of the and Weigh self-govern- present congested Parlia- n**11"' nient, and coercion, if necessary, for Ireland. Temperance ref.rm The preservation of and the reduction of pub- rested interests in the lie-house licences. "Trade." Public control of Edu- Rate aid for Church cation. schools, and religious tests for schoolmasters.
The Lords threw out the Budget which provided Money for Old-Age Pensions in Montgomeryshire.
In 1894. Lord Rosebery asked-" Will you be governed by the House of Lords, or by your- selves P" That is the Question To-day
Suffragettes at Newtown. A large and enthusiastic meeting was held at the Public Hall on Tuesday even- ing. The chair was taken by Miss Alix Minnie Clark, and the principal speakers were Miss Sidley, B.A., and Mrs Cleeves. Mr Hyde, a member of the Men's League for Women's Suffrage, also addressed the meeting. Miss Clark, in the course of her address, said that their cause was one of the greatest at the present moment-it was the cause of humanity. Taxation without representation was tyrannical. At the last election 41,000 illiterate men voted, and yet there were 550 women qualified medical practitioners and a great number of school teachers and others who were not allowed a vote. Mr Hyde followed with a short speech. Miss Sidley said that perhaps they wanted to know why they were out struggling for political freedom. It was because they realised that in the past history and in the history to come how impossible it was for men to legislate properly for women. They had to pay rates and taxes, and also the penalties inflicted by the law, but when they asked for a natural right and privilege, they were not persons in the eyes of the law." Miss Clark proposed a resolution urging upon the electors of Newtown the necessity of votes for women. The motion was sec- onded by Mrs Cleeves, and declared carried, although only a few voted. At the close questions were invited, and in replying, Mrs Cleeves said their move- ment was non-party. It was a great joy to them that Sir J. D. Rees was not going to stand again, also Hillaire Belloc and others who were not standing. The speaker, on being asked why they were going to hold special campaigns in the constituencies of Mr Lloyd George and Mr Asquith, replied that was because they were opposed to the movement. Mr Lloyd George had gone back ov ifs wo..
TO THE MEN OF THE MONTGOMERY BOROUGHS. You and I are called upon to engage in the greatest and the most fateful Parlia- mentary election in the annals of our po- litical history. It is an election that is go- ing to put our principles and our con- sciences to a real test. We shall prove by our votes whether, as the sons of free men, we are worthy of our sires, and, what is more important, worthy the grateful mem- ory of those that are to follow us. Or whether, for the sake of party ascendancy for the moment, or the transient gratifica- tion of personal motives, we are to barter away our birthright and that of our children. The House of Commons is the chamber through which the wage-earner expresses his intelligent wish, be he Liberal or Tory. The question he has to determine now and for all time is whether he shall retain his right of political pronouncement, or hand it over to the tender mercies of men so high! up in the social world that they can scarce distinguish the humble workman creature, let alone discern his condition and his needs. If you favour the former proposition, you will enter the polling booth, lift the pencil and inscribe a cross opposite the name of the Liberal candidate, remarking to your- self Thus I shall teach the coronetted aristocrat that 'the rank is but the guinea stamp, and the man's the gowd for a' that.' That vote will help send Arthur Hum- phreys-Owen-a rare chip of the old block- to St. Stephen's to secure that the will and wish of the worker is of as much conse- quence as that of the aristocrat, who, though non-elected and representing the ex- clusive interests of his own class, arrogantly claims to know better than the whole people of Montgomeryshire what is best for them. If, on the contrary, you favour the second suggestion, you will put that cross against the name of the Tory candidate. But I defy you to tell me face to face that you will do this as a matter of conscience. Then to your own self be true. Both Liberal and Tory candidates are es- timable gentlemen of character and ability, but each is taking his stand upon principles and policies that differ fundamentally and are as wide as the poles asunder. The choice which conscience asks you to make is not that of personality, but of principle. It is not Free Trade which is alone threat- ened the House of Commons as the pre- dominant force in the government of our country is in peril in other words, your individual vote is to lose its value. I ven- ture to say that no lover of the constitution, whatever his political creed, can remain in his tent while such an outrage is threatened. You and I, as the sona of democrats, are going to declare that our rights are not te be encroached upon, even under the most specious devices. We will show that Mont- gomeryshire, at any rate, is the home of a freedom-loving people, who are faithful to their past. As the conflict deepens. we "will march into it with the old battle cry ef fche Switeers on our lips: Make way Jer Liberty." Wbe shall withstand us anil owr cause ? What cause? Why, the cause of our citizenship, as I insisted last week. Is there a working man in these Boroughs, capable of thinking for himself, and privi- leged to think independently, who does net realise that in this conflict the Peers ate seeking to destroy the virtue of his nte i that they scorn the expression of his will, and that they think he requires to be held in the leading strings of the aristoc.acy, lest, like the bankrupt, who, on being asked to explain the reason of his failure, said he "did overthink himself"? Is there an independent man amongst you-a voter with but a spark of self- respect-who does not resent with righteous indignation this aristocratic pretence f I make consideration for some folk. I pity these people, and they know I pity rather than denounce them. But my concern is with the man who enjoys the full freedom of his conscience, the pride of his un- fettered manhood, and the courage of his convictions. Shall he, for any feelings of personal gratification, deliberately sell his most precious birthright, his constitutional freedom? Shall he wantonly give a vote to place the House of Commons under the heel of an unrepresentative chamber, which cannot be dissolved, and which never scruples to use its power to advance the, interests of a selfish class P Will he coun- tenance the great Balfourian betrayal in order to assist the Tories in their plot t. tax food and all other necessaries of life, in order to enrich monopolists ? Let him desert his duty on this occasion let a Tory Government be returned, and the evils and miseries of Protection will be revived, the burden of taxation shifted from the luxuries of the rich to the necessities °ui • Poor- Such is the clear, unmistak- able issue that lies before him—aye, and before his family. And let him not forget this. With the dawn of a new year the aged worker and his wife, now struggling with the help of a pauper dole to keep a humble roof over their heads, will he enjoying a measure of comfort and happiness, thanks to the Liberal grant of a State pension. Toryism tried in vain to deny them this unspeak- able blessing That blessing is secure for all time. Will it ever be forgotten by the sons and daughters of these fged citizens ? But other promised blessings are not yet secure. Only the return of a democratic Government can secure the working man against the privations of recurring unem- ployment, which Toryism would try t. deceive him into thinking can be best secured by submitting to taxes on food and clothing. It is yours to make certain of all the, social blessings that are to flow from a Government in genuine sympathy with the masses of the people. It is yours to choose between a party actively pushing forward the national improvement of social and in- dustrial conditions of life and a party which simply marks time with mock substitutes. Fighting this battle in the strength pf these convictions, you shall win a glorious victory, and in the years to come your children, reaping the blessings of it will be proud te recall how you did your duty for them. Now's the time to prove your worth, Prepare for Peers a biff nnrprise Ignore the thin-masked Tariff trap, Their smiles and blandishments despite I Be men of grit; your cause will then Emerge triumphant from the fray. And, hor'rinr near. shall then appear The dawning of a brighter day. Toms Wwtarelf, LWKE Sbabfb.
THE CALL FOR A GRAND EFFORT. This election will go down in history as the one which shattered the feudal powers of a tyrannical House of Lords. and all electors in these Boroughs who love free- dom and progress should feel inordinately proud to record their votes for this thor- ough champion of their cause. Let us prove our gratitude to a Government which gave our aged fathers and mothers the happiness of an eventide unharaeBed by the spectre of poverty and privation. Let us send back that Government to perma- nently establish our rights of political citizenship, and remove the insolent autocratic obstruction which has been thrown across the path of social well- being. There is to be no more tilting at this obstruction when the Government goes back. Mr Lloyd George has fully assured us of that, and we can all readily recognise what that assurance is based upon. Give us your confidence once more," says Mr Asquith, and we shall take the longest step that has been taken in the lifetime of any of us for the real enfranchisement of the people." A magnificent, far-reaching, ameliorative programme of social improve- ment is lying to the hands of a willing Government. Is it a programme of which any sane working man in these Boroughs does not approve ? On the contrary, the meanest intelligence is capable of realising the immense benefits which it will bring to every home of the wage-earner. Our call, therefore, to every working man who reads this journal is for a supreme effort. Democracy is pitted against privilege, free- dom against oppression, and the duel is to be fought to the death. The clear, out- standing alternatives are liberty or tyranny. Tariffs and Imperialism are for the moment relegated to the background, and the great tribunal of the citizens of Britain is invited to determine whether the country is to be ruled by their will, or by the whim of a motley crew of unrepresentative aristocrats, whose record is one long dark page of ty- rannical oppression and selfish aggrandise- ment of power and possessions. In the whole British record there never was a time when so much depended upon a conscientious realization of the duties of citizenship. Democracy's account with the Peers must be settled once and for all. We have waited long for the reckoning now it has come. If the masses do not now grip hold of a political tyranny in deadly earnest, the Lords will place gyves upon: them from which they will never get free, 1 except by revolution. This is no imaginary danger. What the Peers and their support- ers are striving for is the complete subjec- tion of our representative institutions, and the enthronement of one party in permanent power. Let every elector in the Montgom- ery Boroughs, who can look his fellows in the face not as a poor sycophant, but as an independently thinking being, register his vote with a clear idea and a firm con- viction that what he is doing is thoroughly consistent with the highest dictates of con- science, and with a manly regard for the interests of his children. If he does this, then Mr Arthur Humphreys-Owen will have a triumphant victory, worthy of his en- thusiastic devotion to all that makes for hanup happiness and comfort, and worthy of otn eommon-sense conception of the great and rttal issues which are hanging is the fcafancto. V
THE MOCK PROPOSAL. THE speeches of Mr Humphreys-Owen are fully reported in to-day's 'Express.' How robust and healthy is the Radicalism they reflect. Every sentence rings true to Liberal principles. Every subject is dis- cussed from the standpoint of a thorough- going Progressive. His deliverances strike the real democratic note they demon- strate a genuine sympathy with the con- ditions and the needs of the common peo- ple they clearly define and distinguish the alternatives of Toryism, and right throughout they partake not the slightest semblance of those cleverly drawn quali- fications which colour the Liberal profes- sions of men whose convictions are more or less commercial. The inspiring force of his Liberalism translates itself into speech that sparkles with the whole-hearted de- light of championing a righteous cause, and the transparent sincerity of his ad- vocacy must command the respect of the veriest Tory in this constituency. We shall hear from Tory platforms by and by that the Lords are hastening to give effect to the national call for a reformation of their aristocratic chamber. We shall have the assurance of the Conservative candidate that Mr Balfour has resolved to democratise the Upper Chamber, just as he has said there will be no tax on food, in direct opposition to Mr Chamberlain, who has repeatedly declared that food taxes are the basis of his scheme. We shall be invited to behold the conciliatory disposi- tion of Lord Lansdowne, who at last bows to the financial supremacy of the House of Commons, provided there is no tacking on to Budgets—provided, in other words, that such another Budget as the last is not sent up for lordly approval. Mr Hum- phreys-Owen makes effective sport with this sham repentance of the Peers, who have never once during the last hundred years rejected a Tory bill. There is an old saying that the gates of privilege are never opened from within. They have always to be stormed from without. That has been our invariable experience in the past, and for the forces of progress to accept re- form from the Lords themselves would be like accepting gifts from the Greeks. We have travelled far since the days when Lord Rosebery dismissed all reform schemes as only fit subjects to be discussed at de- bating societies, and eloquently contended that the only practical purpose was that which aimed at curbing the power of the Peers. The question which the people are called upon to decide is whether their welfare is to be left in the hands of 600 Lords, the greater proportion of whom are admittedly not even responsible for the authority they hold. Is it not a supremely ridiculous situation that seven and a half million electors, whose mind and spirit and will are represented in the House of Commons, should be dominated for all time by a few hundred Peers, who are elected by nobody, are responsible to nobody, who look after nobody's interests but their own, and whc arrogate to themselves the right of dis- missing the servants of the electors when. ever it pleases them so to do ? We have said they are elected by nobody. Upon reflection we admit that that is a slight error. About a ecore of Peers are elected by their brethren in Scotland to sit in the Imperial Parliament, and it is very useful to remember this fact in connection with the Lansdowne scheme, which preserves this titular selection. What happened at the last selection of Scottish Peers ? All of them who had served in the previous Parliament were re-elected save one. The exception was Lord Torphichen. And what was the reason of his rejection ? Because as a representative peer he had the audacity to represent the will of the people of Scot- land in regard to the Budget. How beauti- fully these unbiased Peers composed them. selves on that occasion! This lordly sham of reform will deceive no thinking man in the Montgomery Boroughs, if he recalls the repeated contentions of Lord Cawdor, the present Lord Salisbury, and others, that heredity confers upon the House of Peers an independence" which it cannot ob- tain in any other way. "Independence" is right, and of this kind of independence we have now had quite sufficient.
THE CONSERVATIVE CANDIDATE'S COMMITTAL A Tax on the Loaf. AT last we have got it from the Con- servative candidate. We knew that the driving force of circumstances would in- evitably bring it sooner or later. He is now committed to a tax on wheat, in return for which he favours a diminished duty on tea and sugar. Here, at last, on the fiscal question alone, the working people in these Boroughs have the choice of two plain alternatives. Under Toryism the loaf is to be made dearer, upon a promise that tea and sugar will become cheaper. Under Liberalism untaxed bread will remain at its market price, and consistent with the past, all kinds of duty-burdened food must be cheapened. Here is the concrete proof. In ten years-from 1895 to 1905-the Tories put on food taxes to the amount of 8! mil- lions a year, made up as follows:— Tea (4d to 6d per lb.) E2,100,100 Sugar (4/2 per cwt.) E6,100,000 Tory increase £ 8,200,000 Since 1906 the Liberals have reduced the taxes on food by 41 millions a year by this means:— Tea (6d to 5d per lb.) £ 1,100,000 Sugar (4/2 to 1/10 per cwt.) Y.3,700,000 Liberal decrease £ 4,800,000 More than this, it is well to remember that for the last fifty years no Liberal Gov- ernment has ever imposed any new tax on food. Which of these records appeals to the working man, his wife, and his family ? The Conservative candidate, we have al- ways argued, does apt seem to realise the remorseless logic of his economics. A tax on foreign wheat, he believes, will stimu- late agriculture and yield more employ- ment, but he fails to note that if we grow more corn we must produce less meat and milk. He will tell us that this wheat tax must be a small one. But why, if the foreigner is to pay it, and the consumer of the loaf escapes it, (Should not the alleged benefits be made more substantial by a heavy tax ? Or if the consumer must pay the tax by eating a dearer loaf (as, of course, he would), what benefit will be de- rived by the farmer, who, in return for a rise of 2s a quarter in the price of wheat, is obliged to pay more for all his necessary implements ? The farmer would be the first to cry out against the iniquities of Pro- tection. In Germany, in France, and in other Protectionist countries he cried and cried until from one shilling the wheat duty rose to twelve, and the cries are now those of the German and French working people, whose every bite is heavily taxed. Taxes on food and on goods, such as Toryism proposes, means a taxed loaf and a taxed knife to cut it with, taxed meat and a taxed oven to cook it in, taxed butter and a taxed dish to eat it off-and all this because Mr Ifloyd George has had the bare- faced impudence to compel the rich to pay a proportionate share of the expenses of maintaining the defence of the country and of supporting the toil-worn veterans of labour. Contrast this miserable Protec- tionist policy of raising national revenue with a Free Trade Budget which has placed taxes on luxuries and monopolies, leaving untouched the necessaries of life and all that makes for our industrial advance- ment. We thank the Conservative candidate for his candid committal to a taxed loaf. If the working man elector imagines that his bread will be sweetened and eaten with greater relish by being made dearer, then he should vote for Protection, whose start- ing point is a taxed loaf.
MARKET TOLLS AS PROTECTION. AT last the Conservative candidate has made an attempt to furnish us with a local illustration of the efficacy of Protection by citing the proposal of the Newtown Urban Council to levy tolls upon vendors of goods who, on fair days, use the streets of the town for the erection of stalls. We should make," he says, the outsiders pay for the privilege of competing with the home trader," and, heigh presto, there we have practical protection in our very midst, yea, even proposed and carried by a Radical authority. This Protectionist clutching at straws is not less pitiful than amusing. Newtown has a market hall where all who sell goods, be they home traders or foreigners, pay rents and tolls. That arrangement it is proposed to apply to the streets, for two important reasons—the proper regulation of the stalls for public convenience and safety, and the contribution by stall holders towards the cost of scavenging the litter which they leave behind. And so this is Protection. In order to extend its benefits why not keep out the foreign trader with Newtown, by compelling him to pay such a heavy toll for admission that he could not profitably do business with us? Then the local traders, having no opposition, might raise the prices of their goods to any figure, and the housewife would have to grin and pay. We thank the Conservative candidate for another unconscious illustration of the blessings of Free Trade.
THE COUNTY TORIES HOPELESS. As we confidently conjectured last week, Mr David Davies is to be left in undisturbed possession of the county seat. It has been officially announced with somewhat touch- ing pathos that as long as the popular Squire of Plasdinam confronts them the County Tories must remain absolutely hope- less. Shades of the House of Wynn Their only crumb of consolation lies in the hope that Lord Powis is not among the Peers likely to be purged U Sn the process of the Roseberian reform. At pirseast tfte opinion of the noble Earl is more powerful far than j that of 10,000 electors in Montgomery shire, which fact makes an impressive wit- ness of the intolerable injustice per- petrated by the present House of Lords. Following the Tory rout last January we prophesied that Mr Davies would retain the seat as long as he desired. That prophesy has now been endorsed at the headquarters of Toryism. And while the Conservative chiefs lament their state of hopeless impot- ence, not a few of the rank and file of the party are satisfied to have been saved the test of party loyalty by voting against a representative so thoroughly and so gener- ously in sympathy with an agricultural constituency.
THE COUNTY CLERKSHIP. A REPLY FROM WHITEHALL. MR. RICHARD LLOYD" GOES FOR" MR. POWELL. At the Standing Joint Committee held at Newtown on Friday, Mr Richard Lloyd, the chairman, presided, and the Clerk (Mr G. R. D. Harrison) read the following letter from Mr E. Blackwell, a permanent secretary at the Home Office: "Sir—Having laid before the Secretary of State your letter of the 29th August, I am directed by him to say that he is ad- vised that as no alteration is proposed in the amount of the salary of the Clerk of the Peace and Clerk of the County Council, the order of the 10th of January last holds good." The order confirmed the salary (including salaries as finance clerk and for local taxa- tion) of 1:875 paid through the Standing Joint Committee twelve months ago. Mr Newell: That is an answer to the County Council ? The Clerk: No, to the Standing Joint Committee. It is addressed to the Clerk of the Peace. The Chairman: They will have an an- swer at the County Council. Having given this bit of information, Mr Lloyd proceeded to undeliver himself of a slashing criticism of the procedure of the County Council and Mr Edward Powell at the last meeting. He thought that the let- ter from the Home Secretary showed very clearly that the action taken by the Stand- ing Joint Committee on the last occasion with regard to the payment of the clerk of the peace and the fixing of the salary was a proper and legal course. It was a most unfortunate occurrence on the part of a member of the County Council, an alder- man of the County Council-Mr Edward Powell-to raise this matter in the way that he did, &nd to make such statements that the Standing Joint Committee had ex- ceeded its authority or its powers. Clearly, now, those remarks of Mr Edward Powell and the resolution he moved were mis- leading and inaccurate in the extreme. That reply to the resolution passed by a section of the County Council would be read at the next meeting, and would show in its phraseology clearly and distinctly that the action taken at the instance of the committee was a proper and right one. It was always unfortunate that any gentleman should take up a question and ask any committee or any Council to accept a state- ment made by a member without a day or an hour's notice. Mr Powell thrust upon, the County Council a resolution which was; clearly and distinctly out of order. If Mr, Powell had wished to move a resolution,! he should have sent in notice, so that the, members of the County Council could have had an opportunity of knowing what was, coming forward, and being in a position to support or oppose such a resolution. But no Mr Powell, lawyer-like, took advantage I of the County Council by not giving notice, which he was required to do under the standing orders. For some reasons, Mr i Powell did not adopt the proper course of giving notice, and there was no doubt about it that the resolution and the way he 1 brought it forward was out of order. He (the Chairman) called the attention of the Council to the question of his being out of order, and that the County Council had no right to deal with the matter, but his ob- jection was not allowed. He merely stated this here because it was very clear that the committee had the sole right to make the appointment. As the Act stood at pres- ent, the County Council had not the power nor authority in any way to interfere with or alter the minutes of the Standing Joint Committee. They could not alter a word or a figure. It showed that Mr Powell and his opinion and statements were clearly wrong, and further showed that a little knowledge was a dangerous thing. Mr Stafford Price-Davies said what the Chairman had said about this committee he quite agreed with, and he thought it was most unfortunate that members of the County Council and this committee should, so to speak, look upon themselves as a separate section of the committee alto- gether. Mr Newell: We never contested the ap- pointment at all. We simply passed the vote. The Chairman: The appointment has been made, and the Secretary of State has confirmed it, and we have nothing further to say here. I merely made my state- ment because I had no opportunity of making a statement after Mr Edward Powell had made his speech. He claimed the right of reply, therefore I made this statement here to-day as chairman of the committee.
A Tax on Food and Clothing is equal to a Reduction of Wages. Colonel Pryce-Jones and a Taxed Loaf. HIS COMMITTAL. At his meeting in Newtown on Thursday evening, Colonel Pryce-Jones made a state- ment which caused considerable concern among some of his supporters. That con- cern accounts for the non-appearance of the statement in the local Tory press. Word for word, it reads as follows:— I am satisfied that if we do the same as all the other countries in the world—go in for moderate Protection- it will increase our population at home and cause greater prosperity than we have ever enjoyed. I have not budged from my Tariff Reform views. 'WE ARE GOING TO PUT A SMALL DUTY ON WHEAT, AND TO TAKE IT OFF TEA AND SUGAR.' I will never be a party—Mr Balfour has said the same thing and Mr Chamberlain has said the same thing-to increasing the cost of the food of the people." Plainly, therefore, the Conservative can- didate makes the starting point of Protec- tion a tax to tlM toait THE TRUE RING! THE OLD CHAMPION WELCOMES THE NEW!! LORD RENDEL'S STIRRING MESSAGE TO MR. HUMPHREYS-OWEN. My Dear Humphreys-Owen,— Honour for your father's memory, and regard for yourself, make me ardently desire your success, but, above all, my conviction that un- less the Veto of the House of Lords be now abolished no hope of justice for any Welsh National Cause remains. ZIEXTDEL.
« DOUBTING" THE CHIEF CONSTABLES WORD. MR. NEWELL SAYS HE HAS CLEARLY OVER-RIDDEN A MINUTE. THE INDIGNATION OF CAPT. JOHNES AND MR. PRICE-DAVIES. Mr Richard Lloyd presided over a very small Police Committee on Friday morning at Newtown. The only direct representative of the ratepayers was Mr Charles Jones Newell, while Capt. Johnes and Mr Stafford Price-Davies were also present, with the Clerk (Mr G. R. D. Harrison), Chief Constable (Mr W. J. Holland), and Surveyor (Mr G. A. Hutchins). Although there was such a small attend- ance, the proceedings were not by any means featureless, and there arose quite a lively debate on a point raised by Mr Newell on the question of police clothing.. The mischief began by the following little paragraph in the Chief's report:- "With the last issue of the police clothing, Messrs Dolan and Co.'s contract expired, and of the new applicants, Messrs Pearson and Higgins' tender has been accepted." Mr Newell thereupon asked the Clerk to read a copy of the minute of May 28th, 1909, bearing on the point. The Clerk read the minute as follows:— It was resolved, on the motion of Mr J. Pryce Jones, seconded by Mr William Ashton, that on the expiration of the present contract, local tenders be invited, and the contract let by open tender." Mr Newell: This minute distinctly says that the contract should be let by open tender. I should like to ask where the Chief Constable has got his authority from for doing this. You know there was great dissatisfaction with regard to the last police clothing, that it had been made by a firm which sweated labour, and the re- sult was brought before the public in Lon- don with reference to one of their hands who attempted TO COMMIT SUICIDE. In face of that resolution passed by the committee, I don't see where he gets his authority. The Chief Constable: The question of making the police uniform locally was at- tempted here in Major Godfrey's time. The tender was given to a man in Welsh- pool, who immediately sublet it to a Lon- don firm, with the result that the whole of the clothes that came back was simply a supply of misfits which we could do nothing with. The tailors who undertake these big jobs are nearly all men with large es- tablishments, and there is no local man here who could undertake the work. On more than one occasion Mr Wood, the Warehouse, has been consulted. Mr Astley, another local tailor, has also been consulted, and Mr Richard James, and they were not equal to the task. So I issued tenders as we always do, and a London firm—Messrs Pearson and Higgins-took it up. I understand there is no one in the county who makes even the yeomanry uni- forms, and they are sent to London. If we had issued advertisements in the local papers, it would only have been a waste of money. Mr Newell: I don't think this has any- thing to do with it. It is going directly against the clear minute, and we cannot possibly allow that. The Chief Constable: I don't think the committee in their minute ever meant that the contract waer not to go outside the county, and I don't read it as such. WHAT LOCAL TAILORS CANNOT DO. Mr Newell: That has nothing to do with it. The Chairman: Again read the minute. Mr Price-Davies: Local tenders were in- vited, were they not ? Mr Newell: No, they were not. Inspector Tanner: Mr Astley was asked, and other people, and they said they could not undertake it. Mr Newell: The minute of the committee has been over-ridden. The Chairman: Was the tender iadver- tized ? The Chief Constable: It was not locally, but we consulted local people verbally. Inspector Tanner: The big clothing, firms do all the advertizing, sir, and we send printed circulars to these men. Here is the book from which we took the names of the firms. The Chairman: I see there are a number of firms advertising in this constabulary almanac. The Chief Constable: Three men were selected from those big contractors, and their patterns and prices were carefully gone into. Mr Price-Davies: Have you any clothing yet ? The Chief Constable: No only the measurements have gone up. The contract is for three years. The Chairman: Do you consider that these were cheaper and of better quality than the other firm? The Chief Constable: I would not say that. I thought we should give some other firm a chance. The Chairman: You consider that they were quite equal or better ? The Chief Constable: They were quite equal, if not better. BY WHOSE AUTHORITY? Mr Price-Davies: I think it is rather premature to run down the contractors be- fore we have the new cloth. We might wait before grumbling, and see if there is any cause of complaint. As to the ques- tion of this minute Mr Newell has called attention to, I submit it has been complied nith, as tenders were invited. Mr Newell: The tenders were to be open, and all far as I can see, the Chief COD- stable has not done his duty. They ought not to have been let by him. The Chairman: There is nothing stated in the minute as to who should let the tender. It does not say that they should be advertized. The question is whether it has been let by open tender. Mr Newell: The Standing Joint Com- mittee has never given him authority to do so. The Chairman: He has always done it in the past. Mr Newell: That's no reason why he should do it again. The Chairman: The Chief Constable says it is let by open tender, and he has been in the habit of doing it. The Chief Constable: It has been done for the last 20 years. Mr Newell: That is not enough reason why the thing should go on. The Chairman: It has been the practice in the past, you see. This minute only goes so far as to say that local tenders should be invited. Mr Newell: I say local tenders have not been invited. Mr Price-Davies: I rise, sir, on a point of order. Mr Newell is doubting the Chief Constable's word. He has told us that he has approached three firms, and I don't think it is fair for Mr Newell to go on. The Chief Constable has made a clear statement, from which you can see the resolution was carried out by him. I don't know how many tenders in Mr Newell's opinion constitute an open tender. There- fore, I think it MOST UNFAIR, after the clear statement of the Chief Con- stable, that Mr Newell should cast doubt, and I beg to move that we go on with the work of the meeting. Mr Newell: I protest sincerely I am not doubting the word of the Chief. J Capt. Johnes (indignantly): Then what are you doing, sir ? I should say from what you say that you are utterly doubting his word, and I should say, if I were the Chief Constable, that it was an insult. Mr Newell: I am not talking any such nonsense at all, sir. I am not talking either about other occasions, but this occasion. I say the minute has been clearly over- ridden. If you think such a course was proper, then alright. I simply rise with my own protest, and I am simply here to represent the ratepayers, and I am going to stand by the rights of the ratepayers. Mr Price-Davies: You are not the only ratepayer in the place. Mr Newell: I say legally we cannot pass that minute. The Chairman: I think the minute has been complied with. Next business, please.
A HALF TRUTH-AND THE REST. To THE EDITOR OF THE MONTGOMEKTSHUTTH EXPRESS AND RADNOR TIKES." Sir,—In last Saturday's issue of your Tory contemporary, in the report of the meeting at the opening of the Young Unionist League, a question was addressed to the chairman (Mr Sydney Powell) as to whether it was correct that the Liberal Government sent a contract abroad for 10,000 horse shoes for the British Army. Colonel Pryce-Jones answered the question by saying "it is quite correct," but I see the gallant Colonel took good care not to mention the fact that the last Unionist Government had done the same thing. The Unionist Government had the follow- ing moneys worth of horse shoes made in foreign countries:— 1900 £ 10,127 1901 E28,518 1903 £ 6,802 1904 EIO,668 1 These figures are correct, and cannot be contradicted. The reason the Liberal Government pur- chased horse shoes in America waa because an American firm offered to do the work Z500 less than the lowest English tender, and accomplish the work in quicker time, and they were also specially made, for the pattern of shoe used by the War Office is not used in America. The British taxpayers were thus saved £500, which otherwise they would have had to pay. I should also like to mention that on April 1st, 1892, Mr Balfour stated in the House of Commons:— H I, like everyone else in this House, desire that the Government contracts should be executed by manufacturers and workmen in this country but I cannot accede to the principle, as deduced from that, that we should deliberately buy in the more expensive market, at the cost of the general taxpayers, when elsewhere at a cheaper rate we can get such goods as we require." —Yours faithfully, A YOUNG LIBERAL. Newtown, November 28th.