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The Tragedy of Middle Age

 The Manchester Guardian of June 8th and 9th, 1937, publishes two articles dealing with the unemployed women in the cotton towns. Socialists are continually being told that Socialism will destroy the sanctity of the home and family life, and the Guardian gives some interesting examples of what capitalism has done. The article commences:

The Nut

If there is one thing more than another which Socialists resent, it is the master's contempt of working-class intelligence. Think of the recruiting posters of six and seven years ago, of the kind of nursing the constituencies get prior to a general election. Look at the public speeches of Mr. Lloyd George, with their inevitable and ludicrous metaphor. A picturesque figure catches the workers’ fancy; they take up a pat phrase like the latest comic song, and he knows it. The capitalists and their apologists have taken the measure of proletarian simplicity, and the workers generally prove their calculations right.

A Socialist Survey

 We were taught at school that England is a free country. On reaching maturer years, however, we discover this to be a distortion of the truth. It all depends upon a person’s economic status, if he is rich he is free — comparatively. He is free to sweat and grind his poorer “brethren,” to maim and murder them in mines and pits, to butcher them in shunting yards, to drown them in over-burdened ships, to torture and burn them in rubber forests, to run them down and leave them mangled on the highways, and to starve and outrage and seduce them at will, within very wide limits and at a very low price. If he is poor, however, he possesses no freedom in any sense of the word. He is not free to work; he is not free to starve; he is not free to beg; he is not free to steal. He is even “pinched” if he tries to get off the earth.

For Christ's Sake

 The following is a bare statement of the experiences of a man who, out of work and with a wife and four children to support, applied, with a letter from a local clergyman, to one of the Church Army Depots, for work. The man lives at South Tottenham. He delivered his letter at No. 8a. Hornsey-st., Holloway-rd., at 8 a.m. on December 4th. With five others he was told to apply at 9 a.m. and was then given a cross cut saw and started by a Church Army Officer at cutting a heap of old, damp wood full of nails. The men worked in pairs; the wood was of all shapes and sizes but had to be cut into pieces 5½ inches in length. After working from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. without food (although a dinner time was allowed between 1 and 2) our correspondent and his mate had cut 274 lbs. between them. For this he received 10½d. less than 1½d. per hour! It is not suggested that his mate worked harder or better or had more to shew for his efforts, but his mate received 2/6.

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