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y-I Merthyr Painters' Demands.

Navvy Pat's Views.I


Navvy Pat's Views. I The Turberville taproom was crowded; some- thing was up, and when' Pat rushed in flourish- ing a newspaper in his hand the road to his old comer was a hard road to travel. "Here's the 2d Pink Express," he shouted, "ov April 18, an' there's a report ov the afternoon part ov the S. W .M.F. Conference ov that date, an' I'll rade a bit ov it to ye. That this conference expresses its pro- found dissatisfaction with the recent wages aw- ards of Lord St. Aldwyn and Lord Muir Mac- kenzie, which means that too much considera- tion has been given to the increased cost of production in fixing the general wage rate, and that in the opinion of this conference the next wage award should restore to the workmen the old basis of Sir David Dale's Award on the equivalent selling price as arrived at by him in 1903," etc. Now, I've been axed to repeat all the figers bear in' on this saibjeck an' make them plain an' clear, so as any man can onderstand 'em, an I'm goin' to do so an' if you boys don't ketch in 'èn an' ljTay the divvle's delight wid 'em on yer executive an' the /conciliation board; why. there's other districts will be ahead ov ye, an' the Hhondda will lose the credit ov bein' the fightin' centre ov the coalfield. "Well, to begin; why did this conference go back to 1903 when the i910 agreement wud give them just the iaiste little bit better terms? Sir David Dale's award was 11/10 selling price, the, quivalent for 30 per cent. Four shillins rise'above f-he standard 7/10 for 30 per cent. gives n per cent, per 1/- rise. Just before the last settlement was signed, Mr. Barker gave 22/- as the ascertained aver- age selling price of large steam coal, an' for aise in ealkelation I'll knock 2d. off, an' call it 21/10 or 1-4 j rise above the 7/10 standard." Pat had produced his lump of chalk and was renewing his hieroglyphics on the wall, and with chalk and voice proceeded: "14/- rise multi- plied by 71 rate ov advance gives 105 per cent, advance due; add 17-! per cent. war bonus, total advance 122V per cent. owld standard. Knock off 50 per cent., leaving 72$per cent; an'' two-thirds ov that, or 48-! per cent., will be the new standard advance to aiqual Sir David Dale's Award in 1903. 305-6ths taken from that laves In per cent. new standard, or 263, owld lost since 1903. "Lets' have a squint at the 1910 agreement. I'll take only two quivalents from it, the other two bein' not so rosy, an' it's always best to chuck losin' argyments, lavin' the other fellow to pick 'em up if he's smart enuff. Take 12/3 quivalent for 35 per cent. minimum, and 14/- first quivalent for 50 per cent. (The 1910 agree- ment has 4 quivalents, an' ivry wan ov 'em shows a iiffre-iit rate ov advance; isn't that idiotic ) To find the, rate of advance for any given percentage the quivalent being given, find the rise ov the quivalent above 7/10 an' state a proporton, so —rise 1/ percentage rate of advance. Well, 12/3 is a rise ov 4/5 above 7/10, so we have 4/5:1/ 35 per cent: rate, reduce the two first terms to pence an' we get 58: 12: 35: rate. Multiply 35 by 12-420, an' divide by 53 gives rate of advance 7 an' 49-53rds. Again, 14/- is a rise of 6/2, so 6! 2 1 50: rate; pence again for the first two, an' we have 74:16: 50: rate. 12 x 50- 600 divide by 74 we get rate of advance 8 an' 4-37ths. The wall's not big enuff to work out them fracshuns, an' I'm gettin' as dusty as a miller already so average them at 8 per cent. an' that's wan half per cent. above 7-1 per cent. and wan half per cent. is one fifteenth ov 7$per cent. Divide 122 per cent by 15 ye get 8 an' 1-6th. Say 8 per cent old an' 513 new to add to the 122! owld an' 4831 new that Sir David Dale 1903 award wud give us. Why didn't this con- ference go back to the 841 per cent per 1/- we had from the first settlement after 1890 till Sir David Dale pulled it down to 7$per cent in 1903. 12 years more or less? Better still, the 10 per cent we enjoyed for too short a time on or about, before an' after 1890. Here's the way to work wid them rates: 14 times 83; equals 122$per cent; add 17$war bonus equals 140 per cent owld standard. Drop 50 per cent, lavin' 90, an' take two-thirds ov that—60 per cent new standard, but our settlement advances wa-s f)Gi owld and 30 5-6ths new, so our loss is 43l per cent owld an' 291- new. New standard from the 81 per 1/- rate ov advance. Now the 10 per cent: Multiply by 14 equals 140, add 17-1 war bonus equals 157 owld; drop 50, lavin' 107J, an' two-thirds ov that is 71f per cent new. Take off 96;! owld and 30 5-6ths new, the loss since 1890 is 61-41 per cent owld, 40 5-6ths ner cent new. How can this conference blame Lord St. Aldwyn an' Lord Muir Mackenzie for the poor awards when they haven't made any? It was agreed that we have a new standard, 50 per cent above 1879. We were workin' at 00 per cent an' we got two-thirds ov the odd 10 per cent, that was 6i per cent to aiquilise it; we'll lave the war bonus for a bit; ye'll soon see why. The question was what immediate ad- vance shall we demand now the maxinfum is abolished. (Remimber the 22/- sale price an' the 14/- rise.) Our leaders axed for 12$per cent; they professed to know they were entitled to axe 20 per cent; but to show their loyalty their patriotism, their self-racrificin, spirit an' to avoid friction, they dropped 7$per cent out ov our pockets and aske d for 12-21 per cent only. The coaiowners agreed, jumped at it an' nearly burst their ribs keepin' in their laffin'. Well, the 12-1 2 added to the 6g. made 19i-, our ad- vance less war bonus, an' 9 an' 7-12ths, the half ov it, added to it gives 28A to add to the 50 per cent owld standard, makin' 78| per cent owld aiqual to 191; nv; now, to find the, rate.; of advance per 1/- rise, divide 78a3 by 14, an' yet get 5R per cent owld standard, an' two third ov that, or 3i per cent, new standard. Ye can add yer war bonus now, 1^ to the owld an' two-thirds of that or llf to the new, an' ye get 961 per cent owld standard, 30 0-6th-s new standard, widout a word from either Lord St. Aldwyn or Lord Muir Mackenzie, an' the rate ov advance is reduced from the iv'l per cent ov Sir David Dale, an' the 8 per cent ov the first half, ov the 1910 agreement, to 5§ per cent. Not by the demands ov the coal owner, nor the aw ards ov Lord St. Aldwyn or Lord Muir Mackenzie, but by the humble petition ov our o m\ executive. They shud have axed for 30 per cent imme- diate advance to keep cent per 1/ 2 per cent per I/ 411 to bring back 8£ per cent, and 531 percent to bring back the glorious days of 1890 wid its 10 per cent per 1/- rise. Why did not the executive tell the delegates to this conference that Lord St. Aldwyn and Lord Muir Macken- zie were not guilty? It's a dirty trick to keep mum while other people is blamed for yer mis- deeds but I suppose it comes natural to 'em. When the owners axed fur the 5 per cent drop, our leaders told 'em they were entitled to a drop, but they, the leaders, had axed fur 71 2per cent less than they were entitled t., by way of showin' patriotism, an' avoidin' unpleas- antness, an' they expected the owners to be aiqually civil and obligin, an' give up their 5 per cent demand. Did yez iver see such swate I simplicity an' pure innocence, the purty little dariins .sposhimens ov adult infancy; where was their nurses they couldn't keep 'em out ov mischief? Did that 5 per cent drop come by agree- ment, or did St. Aldwyn or Muir Mackenzie have a word in it, I disremember. The only in- terference by the Independent Chairman that I remember was at the second demand for a 5 per cent drop, and we axed for 5 per cent advance, an' Muir Mackenzie refused both ov us, keepin' things as they were. Now, boys; I've given ye enuff figgers to set a nation fightin', an' some of ye cam han- dle figgers. for a few ov ye has passed exams in mining arithmetic. Ye'll find all them figgers correct, or let ye hang me. Ketch in 'em sum ov ye, for I'm weary ov preachin' to wooden blocks.. Ketch in 'em an' go scatter yer leaders an' the consillyation board wid 'em an' bring back sumthin' like fair terms; or, go an' have yer ears nailed to yer bosses' doorposts, as the Bible recommends to them slaves as doesn't want to be free, an' may I be there to have a kick at ye in passin'

- =I At Random. I


National Council Against Conscription…



four Conscientious Ubleators…