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Gladstone. The principles of British policy followed by Lord Salisbury may justify themselves by their success; but it is apparent that they do not conform to the traditional and the historical policy of British foreign ministers since the first Reform Act. In its foreign policy, at all events, the Tory Government has created a greater number of innovations, has broken away from a greater number of precedents, and has set a greater number of new-fangled examples' than any Government which has existed in Mr. Gladstone's time. The Government does not deny that it has deviated from the practice of several series of predecessors, Conservative as well as Liberal; it glories in its innovations as happy restorations of an old and bygone policy. Mr. Gladstone had, like previous Liberal speakers, to show that the innovations had failed in fact. It was not necessary to argue in favour of an opposite policy. If the new Conservative or Tory policy has failed, as he demonstrates it has failed, that which it attempted to supersede necessarily remains in possession of the field. In criticising Tory finance the same course had to be pursued. Sir Stafford Northcote's finance is a new thing in the annals of the Exchequer. That is to say, if old and historical, it is so in the sense in which Lord Salisbury's foreign policy is old and historical. As Lord Salisbury's foreign policy is an adaptation of Lord Castlereagh's foreign policy, Sir Stafford Northcote's finance is the finance of Nicholas Vansittart. In foreign policy Mr. Gladstone could point to Turkey demoralised, cut to pieces, and even terrorised by its allies, to blundering crimes against other people's freedom in Africa, to Continental jealousies and sneers aroused by the shabby spoliation of Cyprus, to anarchy let loose by ourselves against ourselves in Afghanistan. He could ask without much doubt what the answer must be, whether that be “the method of government which pleases the people of this country. In finance he could point to accounts never made up because the capital account of the nation is never now closed. He could show that more is taken from the nation in proportion to the national wealth, and that whatever is spent is invested in speculations which are always making new calls. It was not necessary to promise Scotch electors Financial reforms. He did not engage that a Liberal finance Minister would renew the offer of 1874 of No income tax v. income tax.' All he could promise, and all there was any need to promise, was that there should be no more of Sir Stafford Northcote's experiments in concealed deficits.

In the region of domestic legislation Mr. Gladstone had a different kind of work to perform. There, to a certain extent, the Conservative Ministry has placed itself beyond criticism. Its domestic policy cannot be convicted of temerity, any more than the snakes of Iceland can be classified. A Liberal orator, in discussing the prospects of legislation, has to go outside his defences. He acts with the conscious risk of finding the gates closed behind him by timorous friends, who will not join in the sally. Terrors of this kind are no terrors to one constituted like Mr. Gladstone. His logical mind loves even to go beyond

pursue principles to all their possible conclusions, though he may doubt if in practice those conclusions will ever be reached. It is the special charm to him of his retirement from the post of chief of the Liberal party, that he can let his mind take its natural course, whether his friends keep up with him or not. In his Scotch campaign be fought, he told them at Dalkeith, “in the capacity, not of a leader of the Liberal party, but of one of its most convinced and not least loyal members. He expressed an intentionally emphatic hope, in the Music Hall at Edinburgh, that the verdict of the country will give to Lord Granville and Lord Hartington the responsible charge of its affairs.' He added that he should think them much to be pitied' for succeeding to such “ a heritage of financial confusion.' But, it may be suspected, it would not be the difficulties which would confirm him in his resolution not to resume office, so much as reluctance to surrender kis liberty to reason out political principles. It must, therefore, have been something of a surprise to Mr. Gladstone's colleagues, as it was certainly a disappointment to his vigilant enemies, that his reasoning on future legislation moved along such orderly lines. He has been at times apt to forget that audiences of political harangues are quick to presume that what a statesman affirms to be lawful he is disposed at once to practise. It was a remarkable phenomenon of his Scotch discourses that he held himself so carefully on the right side of the border which separates a Ministerial programme from a political ideal. The single occasion on which he crossed the line was when he stated at West Calder the abstract proposition that, “if it be known to be for the welfare of the community at large, the Legislature is perfectly entitled to buy out the landed proprietor for the purpose of dividing property into small lots.' The Legislature is of course entitled to do that, as it is entitled to empower a railway company to take possession of a private house. Equally, of course, considering that Mr. Gladstone declared in the same breath that he does not wish to recommend it,' and that he does not believe that the large properties of this country can or will universally be broken up into small ones, or that the land of this country will be owned, as a general rule, by those who cultivate it,' it would have been more prudent not to throw forth the abstract principle for opponents to tear at, as if it had been the preamble of a Bill for 1881. What, however, is stranger than this act of oratorical imprudence is that it should stand by itself. Consarvatives and even Liberals cannot be expected to assent to all Mr. Gladstone's projects for future legislation. Opponents have been unable, with all their efforts, to point to more than a single suggestion in them which they can represent as even hypothetically revolutionary. Of that they have made the most.

A settlement of the question of the liquor traffic, a change in the law of intestacy and primogeniture in relation to land, a scheme of local Government which shall give to the counties the regular selfgovernment extolled by Mr. Gladstone in the case of towns, and perhaps an amendment of the representation which will reduce the

more glaring anomalies, make a legislative programme for the Liberal party, of which no particular can be safely left longer untouched, but which implies nothing like a political or social revolution. Mr. Gladstone warned his hearers, with evident good faith, that he had no authority to speak for the Liberal party. But they will not have found it hard to conjecture on which side his influence is sure to be cast in the legislative determination of pressing questions. On the subject of liquor traffic reform, he is in favour of the principle,' at least, of local option. He would accompany any such law with provisions for compensating persons whose trade it would destroy, and who have grown up, not by their fault, but by our fault, under the shadow of laws' which it may be then proposed to abrogate. In legislation respecting the land, he warns British farmers against being deluded into trusting in quack remedies, such as any form of Protection. The Liberal party could countenance nothing of the sort; but it would reform the law of hypothec for the benefit of Scotch farmers. Certainly it would never connive at the introduction of a Bill for the purpose, with the apparent acquiescence of the Government, knowing that the Government's Scotch votes for the measure were to be overridden by the Government's English and Irish votes against it. Mr. Gladstone appears to think the Legislature might interpose between landlord and tenant throughout the kingdom for the protection of the latter against unfairly restrictive covenants in leases, and the former against the tenant's injustice to the land in the last few years of the term. Whether he would mean such a measure to be compulsory or discretionary, he did not state. He disapproves of the law of intestacy, which disinherits younger children. He disapproves even more of the law of entail and settlement. That law, by curtailing the liberty of the owner, tends, he believes, greatly to curtail the liberty of the farmer. It curtails, as injuriously, the natural authority and responsibility of the father. His deliberate declaration at Dalkeith was that,

not only to liberate agriculture, but upon other and higher grounds, he is for doing away with this law of settlement and entail.'

Local government Mr. Gladstone coupled, at Dalkeith, with the land laws as a subject which ought to occupy the thoughts of every man who desires to be a legislator. He advocates the bestowal of a proper scheme of local government on the counties, both as their right, and as a necessity for Parliaments staggering under a load of local legislation which ought to be transacted locally. Without denying that the ratepayers might be lawfully relieved out of the Imperial exchequer, he is indignant that the State subsidy should have been given before a rightful authority had been constituted for its application. The Cabinet over which he presided saw in the power to relieve the ratepayers from the Consolidated Fund a strong leverage placed in the hands of the Executive Government to induce all the local interests to come freely into the changes that must be made in order to establish a sound system of county government, and

their own local taxation which they have over the disposal of Imperial taxes. The consideration has now been parted with; the result has been utter indifference to local government reform among the Parliamentary majority, representing as it does the authority which has hitherto controlled local taxation. Yet, harder as the task has now become, and the more strenuous the resistance to be anticipated from classes interested in the existing system, Mr. Gladstone declares it must be undertaken and accomplished. In it he

means of curing the mischief of Irish Obstruction by cutting from under the feet of Home Rulers their strongest argument that Parliament is incompetent for the due performance of the excessive and impossible' amount of business now laid upon it. Scotch Members are more patient as well as more orderly than Irish ; but they all complain as much as Home Rulers, though 'seriously and gravely,' that they cannot get the Scotch business done in the House of Commons.' Mr. Gladstone will tolerate no extension of local Government which would weaken or compromise the authority of the Imperial Parliament. The Imperial Parliament must be supreme in these three kingdoms, and no intelligent or patriotic mind would countenance anything which could cast a doubt upon that supremacy.' But he is not to be frightened out of a measure which would relieve Parliament and improve local legislation in Ireland, Scotland, Wales, and portions of England,' by being told that he is "condescending to the prejudices of Home Rulers.'

We have enumerated representative reform among the articles of Mr. Gladstone's legislative programme. From the warmth with which he spoke at Glasgow of the inadequacy of Scotch representation it may be inferred that it is a wrong which in his judgment requires speedy remedy. When the subject is next discussed it may be supposed some restriction will be attempted also on the creation of those sham' and phantom' voters, the voters commonly known as · faggot voters,' introduced for the purpose of overbearing and overpowering the real voters.' But representative reform is not among the themes he proposes for immediate consideration. Other omitted questions are to be found in the Liberal party's permanent list of topics for settlement, and therefore, doubtless, in Mr. Gladstone's. The churchyard question is an example of a whole class. If Mr. Gladstone, during his Scotch mission, did not dwell on it, and on others as much debated as it, the explanation is that he regards them as sufficiently secure in the charge of other statesmen. One special question he distinctly removed from the number of those which he has warned the nation and the Conservative Government may be dealt with on the first convenient opportunity without further notice. Church disestablishment in Scotland may, or may not, come on for determination within no long time. But so far as a private member can, he pledges the Liberal party that, before it is debated in Parliament, at the instance of a Liberal Government, the question shall be.

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more glaring anomalies, make a legislative programme for the Liberal party, of which no particular can be safely left longer untouched, but which implies nothing like a political or social revolution. Mr. Gladstone warned his hearers, with evident good faith, that he had no authority to speak for the Liberal party. But they will not have found it hard to conjecture on which side his influence is sure to be cast in the legislative determination of pressing questions. On the subject of liquor traffic reform, he is in favour of the principle,' at least, of local option. He would accompany any such law with provisions for compensating persons whose trade it would destroy, and “who have grown up, not by their fault, but by our fault, under the shadow of laws' which it may be then proposed to abrogate. In legislation respecting the land, he warns British farmers against being deluded into trusting in "quack remedies, such as any form of Protection. The Liberal party could countenance nothing of the sort; but it would reform the law of hypothec for the benefit of Scotch farmers. Certainly it would never connive at the introduction of a Bill for the purpose, with the apparent acquiescence of the Government, knowing that the Government's Scotch votes for the measure were to be overridden by the Government's English and Irish votes against it. Mr. Gladstone appears to think the Legislature might interpose between landlord and tenant throughout the kingdom for the protection of the latter against unfairly restrictive covenants in leases, and the former against the tenant's injustice to the land in the last few years of the term. Whether he would mean such a measure to be compulsory or discretionary, he did not state. He disapproves of the law of intestacy, which disinherits younger children. He disapproves even more of the law of entail and settlement. That law, by curtailing the liberty of the owner, tends, he believes, greatly to curtail the liberty of the farmer. It curtails, as injuriously, the natural authority and responsibility of the father. His deliberate declaration at Dalkeith was that,

not only to liberate agriculture, but upon other and higher grounds, he is for doing away with this law of settlement and entail.'

Local government Mr. Gladstone coupled, at Dalkeith, with the land laws as a subject which ought to occupy the thoughts of every man who desires to be a legislator. He advocates the bestowal of a proper scheme of local government on the counties, both as their right, and as a necessity for Parliaments staggering under a load of local legislation which ought to be transacted locally. Without denying that the ratepayers might be lawfully relieved out of the Imperial exchequer, he is indignant that the State subsidy should have been given before a rightful authority had been constituted for its application. The Cabinet over which he presided saw 'in the power to relieve the ratepayers from the Consolidated Fund a strong leverage placed in the hands of the Executive Government to induce all the local interests to come freely into the changes that must be made in order to establish a sound system of county government, and

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