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l Political Notes


l Political Notes By F. W. Jowett. I TWO NEW "STUNTS." i The press campaign for the promotion of I hatred has given birth to two stunts which for the present Mr. Lloyd George has dodged. It will he found out later that he has dodged them, but the election will be over then. One of tb e stunts" is the demand for an indem- nity from Germany to pay the war debt of Great Britain, to which demand, if it were made. there would have to he added the war debts of all the Allies of Great Britain, for their churns would be equally sound. The other" stunt" is the demand for the exclusion of Germans from this country. A BARRIER. l I Mr Lloyd George knows very well that tne Government have no intention of trying to make Germany pav the war wsts. What is morc: die knows that tl? Goverumenta?d? barred from makmg any such demand by their NotTaccepting President Wilsons peace ?d.- tio^ In that note the Bnt.sh Government d?s- tinctly accepted Pre?d.nt ??<on's conditions, wh?h contained no prov?h that could po?My be construed or twisted into a reference to in- demnities. This fact is emphasised by the re- servation which the Allied Note ill reply to President, Wilson contained in regard to this matter The reservation in question was to the effect that the Allies, claimed the right to de- mand compensation for actual damage suffered by individuals. THE JINCO YELP. Tho'straight answer to those who are running the indemnity "stunt" was not given by Mr. Lloyd George for the simple reason that he dare not risk doing so bf't..)l" the election. If he had sa-j that }> > couV-1 yfai yment of the war d?bt as one oi the condition otpe?c?, aud That if he did he would be ?ty of a grave breach of faith in the eyes of the whole civilized world, the Jingo pack would have been yelping at his heels directly. He, therefore, pretended to agree with the demands for an indemnity, but protected himself by a qualification behind which he can shield himself when concealment is no longer possible. Germany must pay as far as she can," said Mr. Lloyd George, but we are not going to allow her to pay in such a way as to wreck our own industries." THE RUB. Sir Auckland Geddes estimates that if Ger- manv had to pav indemnities to wver the war costs of the Allies the bill would amount to £ 50,000,000,(100. To meet such a colossal lia- bilitv the whole of the German people would have to become the slaves of the Allies for an indefinite period. Germany never boast-ed of possessing more than £ 200,000,000 in gold, and the debt would have to be paid in goods. Under the Capitalist System of industry the inevitable result of importing £600,009,000 worth of goods into Great Britain to pay interest and sinking fund on our debt E8,000,000,000 of war debt I would be to deprive millions of working people of their work and wages. NIGHTMARE OF MILITARISM. If the British nation were a Socialist Com- monwealth, of course, the result would be differ- ent, for, in that case, the arrangement would be that the British people would be almost com- pletely fed and clothed by slaves in Germany, and might employ themselves luxuriously ac- cording to their own pleasure. That is, if the arrangement could be made to work without force, which is unthinkable. Indeed, to main- tain such relation: there would have to be a permanent military occupation of Germany. What a nightmare of militarism this would be;:¡ But. of course, only people who have become so saturated with the gospel of hate that they are bereft of their reason, and those who do not think f(g themselves at all. are carried away with stunts such as the indemnity for the payment of war debt. The pity of it is that ereat Uritaiu is afflicted with a. Prime Minister who, as a mere electioneering dodge. pretends to believe in the proposal. CAMOUFLAGE. The second ''stunt" to which Mr. Lloyd George played "artful dodder" relates to the exclusion of all persons of German nationality. This is, in short, the demand. To avoid giving a direct reply to the demand in question, Mr. Lloyd George employed his favourite device of misrepresenting it. He pretended that it re- lated ohiy t-o enemy aliens who have abused their position here. He worked himself into that state of apparent indignation which some of us have seen so often and asked: What about those people whom we received without question for years to our shores—who. after we did so and gave them equal rights with the sons and daughters of our households abused our hospitality to betray the land that received them. NEVER AGAIN." And the re- ports state that Mr. Lloyd George at this point banged the table and the au dience cheered vociferously. "POOR DELUDED AUDIENCE." Poor deluded audlence f Unfortunate British people afflicted with an "artful dodger" as Prime Minister ? The audience were deceived into thinking that Mr. Lloyd George had identi- fied himself v :+1, the nt" and had agreed that people of German nationality should not be allowed to set foot in Great Britain in future. Whereas, in point of fact, he had only delivered himself of the perfectly harmless declaration that spies and people who betray Great Britain will be excluded. THE TRICKY BIT. It would have been more difficult to tell the audience which cheered vociferously" at New- castle that Great Britain had given its pledged word to make peace on terms that must in- volve no discrimination between those to whom we wish to be just and those to whom we do not wish to be just," and that on these terms there could be no discrimination against for- eigners merely on the ground of their national- ity. To persons who have abused their liberty here, or, as Mr. Lloyd George prefers to say our hospitality," of course, lie could properly say never again," but the audience did not realise that it was for this only that they cheered vociferously." ABUSE v. FACT. Mr. Winston Churchill is in many respects a fit lieutenant for service under Mr. Lloyd George. He has cheek and impudence, although he is not so artful as his chief. The other day he abused his critics and called them all sorts of names. He said they were ne'er-do-wells, degenerates, pacifists and defeatists, who would have led us to a shameful surrender." He did not respect his audience sufficiently to offer any proof that his critics had, in fact, advocated a policy that led to surrender, and, there does not exist among them one who is so far degener- ate as to defend his Dardanelles and Gallipoli campaign as a legitimate gamble." He, how- ever, was capable of that.

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