The secretary of the Middlesex Education Committee, in a report recently issued, regrets that children should show an aversion to manual labour. The gentleman ought to use the fact as a testimonial to the powers of observation which the system adopted by his Committee develops in the children.

You cannot eat your cake and have it too, nor treat manual labour with contumely and encourage respect for it.

* * *

It may be taken as a sign of China’s capitalistic progress that “From now onwards the sale of human beings is forbidden under pain of heavy punishment.” Manchester Guardian (11.3.10).

One of the essentials to capitalist production is the “free labourer,” whose freedom consists of being free to sell his labour-power to live when anyone wants to buy, and free to starve when he can’t find a purchaser for his commodity.

* * *

Mr. Keir Hardie is gratified at the result of the ballot on the co-partnership scheme of Sir C. Furness. The men rejected the scheme after a year’s trial. We leave Messrs. Hardie and Barnes (who oppose the scheme) to square the matter with Mr. D. J. Shackleton, who upholds co-partnership ventures. All three claim to represent Labour

Mr. Hardie stated that the only satisfactory form of profit-sharing was that offered by Socialism ! Under Mr. Hardie’s “Socialism” the workers will control industry so that they may rob themselves in order to give themselves a Xmas box out of their “surplus product ” !

Then hurrah! for the Xmas box Socialism of Hardie.

* * *

Mr. Bruce Glaisier tells us in the Labour Leader of 25.3.10 that “my hope of Socialism, my belief in the working class as the only political force that will emancipate society, and my trust in the Labour Party are stronger than ever.”

All of which was upheld by his casting his vote at the General Election for a Liberal—that is, of course, if he voted in accordance with his statement that “in my own constitu¬ency, where no Labour candidate is in the field, I shall record my vote unhesitatingly, and as openly as I can, against the Lords and for the Budget.” Labour Leader, 7.1.10.

Learn then, of one who has been a teacher of Socialism (!) for 27 years, that the way to build up a “force that will emancipate society” is by recording your vote for a Liberal. The result of such leading is the political backwardness of the working class that we unhappily behold to-day.

* * *

Speaking in Parliament on the Trade Union Levies case (13.4.10.) Mr. D. J. Shackleton admitted that the Labour Party was not a party when he said : “There is scarcely a single subject of a national character on which they (i.e., the Labour M.P.s) do not give free play to their own convictions.”

To cap this statement of fact, he added another, which bears out the Socialist Party’s contention that the Labour group in Parliament is but a section of the Liberal Party. His statement was :

“The sudden defence of the minority man was rather late in the day, and was due to the fact that the Labour Party had ceased to be nothing more than a wing of the Liberal Party.”

They have verily “ceased to be nothing more than a wing,” they have become the main support of the Liberals.

Proof ? Yes! Their action on the Army Estimates, by which the Government remain in power—and the Labour M.P.s continue to draw their salaries.

* * *

Not only have ” our” possessions in Africa become civilised, they have also become syphilised, if we may believe, the “East London Daily Dispatch of South Africa.”

That paper is alarmed at the spread of the disease and suggests an enquiry and stringent measures for its abolition. The natives are very largely employed in the diamond mines under conditions akin to those of “Chinese slavery,” and the fear is that the supply of black labour will become scarce unless precautionary measures are taken. Worse still, danger to Europeans threatens from contact with the Negro servants !

J. B.

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