By the Way

The official report of the Aisgill disaster, issued by the Board of Trade inspector, was the sub­ject of an interesting article in the “Weekly Despatch” (Nov. 30,1913). In dealing with the inspector’s remarks in regard to the driver crawl­ing round his engine for the purpose of oiling the writer says:

“On the type of engine that Caudle was driv­ing drivers have been leaving their cabs and going round the frame of the engine regularly for the last three years, because they have been forced to do so from the circumstances of the case.”

This is necessary owing to an alteration in the construction of the engine. And again :

“There has been endless trouble between the Midland and their drivers on this question dur­ing the past few years. One driver who refused to leave his cab, and so let his axles run hot, was reduced to a lower class engine, and is now in receipt of less wages as a result of refusing to take the risks that, Caudle took.
“The Board of Trade is ignorant of these things, of course. It always is.”

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All is now well ! For the “Daily News” of Oct. 10th last informs us that Mr. Geo. Barnes, Labour M.P., says:

“From contact with the Chancellor of the Exchequer, I am acquainted with the sympathy he feels for the agricultural labourers, and the hope he entertains of alleviating their lot. . . . I can only say that if the Government legislates on the lines and in accord with the spirit of his speech at Swindon, Mr. Lloyd George will de­serve and recaive my whole-hearted support, and in my opinion, that of the whole Labour Party.”

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From the above it would appear that Mr. G. Barnes is easily satisfied (his own bread being pretty well buttered), and it also serves to show how short his memory is. When Mr. Lloyd Gaorge was “Budget booming,” and swanking the workers, he told us that:

“We are raising money by means of the Budget for the purpose of assisting our great friendly societies to provide for the sick and the widows and orphans”. (Limehouse, July 30th, 1909.)

Perhaps Mr. Barnes can tell us where the sympathy of the Chancellor for the widows and orphans can now be found.

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