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Political Hypocrisy

The Thieves Kitchen Records

There has been a very flat month in the Thieves' Kitchen, and the debates, centring largely round matters of finance, offer nothing of sufficient interest to find place in these records. The Oral Answers, however, provide some food for reflection, as they usually do.

On March 20th Mr. Gwynne "asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he is aware that the father of A. Judge, able seaman, H.M.S. 'Vectis,' sent a telegram on the 7th March to the Admiralty asking them to transmit a message to him of his mother's death; that no reply was received until the 11th March, and then to the effect that the Admiralty were unable to forward private messages to naval ratings at public expense."

South Africa: Make Crime Pay

 The above is the title of an article by the Johannesburg correspondent of the Economist, which in its issue of September 6th, presents us with an interesting sidelight on labour relations in South African agriculture. It appears that in the Kroonstad district of the Orange Free State,

      “the new goldfields nearby are drawing labour away from the farms; and in any case the Africans are showing an increasing aversion to farm work. Under the masters and servants act, a farmer can still pursue a runaway worker, and have him first fined, and then forced back to work. But the Africans, it seems, now resent this."

 Obviously the good farmers of Kroonstad had got to find a solution to this distressing dilemma. They might raise wages, and thus make farm work more attractive. (They might, but not if they could avoid it.) There must (they reasoned) be some way out of the difficulty. And there was.

Book Review: The Champions of Labour!

 After continually telling us recently that the Labour Party is a third Capitalist Party, we are somewhat amused to find the Communists in the new edition of “Communism is Commonsense” giving us the following:

Our Allies and Neutrality

 It is a very strange thing how deeply the average worker of to day is concerned about the independence and neutrality of “Plucky Little Belgium.” One would think to hear some of them talk, that it was the alpha and omega of this country, to protect the smaller and weaker States of the world from the continual encroachments of their larger and more powerful enemies. The capitalist Press is devoting much ink and paper in telling us that the present crisis into which we have been drawn, "to maintain our dignity and honour,” is due to Germany's disregard for the neutrality and independence of Belgium, which had been guaranteed to them by treaty, and Lt. Gen. Imhoff, at Urania Hall, Berlin, is reported by the "Daily Call," of the 8th October. 1914.

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