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was found to be the only man loud enough resisted to the bitter end, and then include it and abusive enough to hold the leadership of in a scheme of county government ? In what the Conservative party, and the gentlemen of terms are we to speak of a man who, out of Englanıl loyally accepted him as leader. office, fills credulous and simple souls with the
Given such a leader and such a party, and any | wildest hopes in a policy of Fair Trade, and in one can foretell the result. He will oppose office calmly ignores all that he has said ? If everything, revile everything, promise every- Mr. Gladstone or Mr. Chamberlain had been thing, and they will echo all he says. Their guilty of any one of these stupendous contrapurpose is to drive the Liberals from power, dictions it would have lasted a whole generation and to that end every means is honest. In of Tory speech-makers, and would probably prvjate life it is only the policeman which pre- have blasted his career. But Lord Randolph vents the advent of such daring spirits to Churchill thrives on exposure. Newspapers power and plenty. There is no policeman in print his speeches in parallel columns, politics, and falsehood is privileged. The man revealing an odious trickery, and his friends who steals turnips from a field goes to prison, applaud him to the skies. The more dishonest the man who gets votes by false pretensions Lord Randolph Churchill becomes the more goes to Downing Street.
popular he grows. What shall we say of the speeches of Lord Now, it has been a high and almost a holy Randolph Churchill, by what name shall we call | tradition of British politics that we could put them ? As we write, they lie before 11s. It is a implicit trust in the honour of our leaders. No melancholy task to turn from one of these one appreciated the character of Sir Robert speeches to another. With shame and sorrow we Peel as did Mr. Cobden, no one admired Mr. remember that the man who spoke them is the Cobden as did Sir Robert Peel. Lord leader of our House of Commons, that he stands Palmerston was often justly and occasionally representative to the world of an ancient and with injustice vehemently attacked, but it proud assembly, whose traditions are nobler and never occurred to any one that Lord Palmerston purer than those of the Roman Senate. It is a was not a gentleman. Even when the passion fact to startle and alarm the whole Anglo-Saxon of debate led Lord Salisbury to say what he world. We have come to a time when not would hardly have sworn to in a court of law virtue, but the want of virtue, gains our insignia men noted the fact, perhaps with severity, of honour. What do the Tory gentlemen of but they never regarded it as anything other England think of it all ? What is their opinion than the temporary aberration of a high and of a man who speaks one day with the voice of honourable mind. As to Lord Iddesleigh, most Mr. Newdegate, and next day with the accents of us would be inclined to accept his bare word of Mr. Bradlaugh? What do they feel when he against our own memory. To this great tradialternately leagues himself with Mr. Parnell, tion Lord Randolph Churchill stands utterly and appeals to the passions of an Orange mob? opposed. The Liberals distrust him and desAre their feelings rage and shame, or do they pise him; the Conservatives are perfectly smile at the acuteness of the dodge ?
| aware that the same reasons which lead him to Upon the answer to these questions depends serve his party would lead him to sell it. the other question, often and oftener asked, | The appearance in politics of such a man as whether the Tory gentleman has not ceased to be. Churchill, especially when he follows such For we solemnly believe that no one can at once another man as Disraeli, is not only a cause of understand and approve of the policy of Lord shame, it is a cause of alarm. The fact that he Randolph Churchill and possess the feelings of has a large and enthusiastic following who hail a man of honour. How can the same man rage with acclamation all his knavish politics posagainst thetyranny of the Closure,and then imme- sesses a sombre interest. Where we see the diately adoptit as a just and necessary measure ? | vulture we look for the carrion. When men What honest change of opinion can bring a man worship a Disraeli and follow a Churchill corrupwithin a few short months to say that Bulgaria tion is working in the land. Remember this, is altogether wrong and altogether right } Is although everything else should be forgotten, it possible that within a brief period, to be that the prosperity of a country depends upon measured rather by weeks than months, a its moral feeling. When that goes everything political leader should, from considering the goes. It is not Russia that will defeat us; it is settlement of a peasantry on the soil as the idea not France that will destroy us. If our fate of a maniac, come to add it to his programme ? | is sealed our destruction comes from within. By what process compatible with honesty can National destruction is the result of national a statesman describe Local Option as a dark corruption, and of that corruption Lord Ranintrigue to set up social tyranny, a thing to be 'dolph Churchill is a symptom and a sign, Such men as he are familiar to history, and the dread red gulf of revolution it was no when they appear the alarm bell should peal other class of men who deluded her people and its loudest. Once Italy was filled with noble their rulers. The instinct of a party may be republics, upheld by the valour and the virtue of deceived, but it cannot be deceived always. their citizens. Then there appeared the race of The party and the leader of the party must be Machiavelli—statesmen who made political in sympathy. If, then, Lord Randolph virtue a jest and turned politics into a cynical Churchill is to represent the Conservative game. The result was immediate and dis party, what are we to think? Allow largely astrous, and the seats of power and commerce and liberally for prejudice and passion, yet what became provincial and half deserted cities. is this dreadful thing that remains ? We cannot When the hour had come for Spain to pass disguise it. It is dishonour, it is rottenness. from the throne of nations politicians of the A fatal disease has made its appearance in the type of Disraeli and Churchill swarmed in her politics of Britain : Will we vanquish it or will Court. While France was hurrying down to lit vanquish us?
CHARITY OR JUSTICE.
Mankind may be divided into two classes – purposes until legislation and administration the buyers and the sellers of labour. The age become permeated with injustice. and health of a community may be ascertained The object of the true Democrat is to remove by applying this simple test : what are the re- the evils which have thus arisen. During the lative degrees of respect in which industry last fifty years much thoughtful intelligence and property are regarded ? When a com- has been devoted to the subject, and substanmunity is young and vigorous “men are tial progress has been made towards the realisafamous as they lift up axes against thick trees.” | tion of Democratic ideals. At the beginning In the later stages of its existence men are of the present century patriotic Democrats honoured in proportion to the extent in which wisely devoted their attention to those Conthey possess wealth and live without labour. stitutional reforms which are essential to prac. In its youth, and until a nation has arrived at tical measures. In some degree they succeeded. middle age, shopkeepers confer obligations on Parliament received a slight infusion of the purchasers ; but in the course of time this feel-Democratic spirit, and something was done ing changes, and purchasers are supposed to towards turning the tide of legislative injustice. confer obligations on shopkeepers, and usually As yet, however, the power of privilege, or receive their obsequious demonstrations. In plunder, is still gaining upon the claims of early times the men who receive a service industry and justice. The working classes of touch their hats to the men who render it. In the community, although better off, are more later and degenerate days those who render robbed now than they were ever robbed before. service touch their hats to those who accept it. They realise a smaller proportion than formerly
Tested by any right standard this change of what they produce. Human labour has beindicates the advent of disease and presages come five times as productive as it was a decay. Labour, whether of hand or brain, is century since, and the working classes, instead the sole means by which human needs can be of benefiting five hundred per cent., are not satisfied, and when the worker is treated with fifty per cent. better off than they were a injustice or disrespect society must be going hundred years ago. Wealth and luxury have down hill.
vastly multiplied ; relatively the difference beA fierce struggle between the buyers and tween wealthy idlers and needy workers is sellers of labour begins early in the life of greater than ever. More persons have perished every community, and it usually ends first in from 'famine and more children have cried the degradation of labour and then in the from hunger during the present century than overthrow of the State. The buyers of labour, in any previous period of our history. The being men of more experience and knowledge very productiveness of our machinery and than the majority of workers, soon take the commerce has become a curse, and we are lead in affairs, and manipulate them to their paralysed because we cannot bring together the own advantage. They obtain control of the producers who are encumbered with produce government, which they use for their own and the poor who are perishing from want. Charity which “never faileth ” has ceased to agricultural rent, mining royalties, and ground be effective for good ; politicians, philosophers, rents extracts from the pockets of the indusand philanthropists are alike at their wits' end trial classes at least £150,000,000 per annum, to suggest a remedy for the juxtaposition of and so reduces their condition that they are abundance and destitution which it seems im- compelled to work for £150,000,000 a year possible to bring together.
less wages than they would otherwise receive.' We are anxiously “ learning to do well,” but The national resources, which belong to, and we are neglecting the previous lesson, “ cease are under the control of, the poor, are abunto do evil." We must cease to rob industry | dantly sufficient to meet all the charges which before we can regulate it with advantage. they incur, and thus every penny which is There is, and will be, a curse upon charity demanded in rates or taxes represents fraud. until we are just. The working people of this The demand comes upon us because our rulers country are crushed under a weight of injustice commit breaches of trust in allowing the inwhich must be removed.
come from public property to be paid to private In taking down the edifice of wrong we must persons. It would not be one whit less unbegin at the top, and cease to give pay and reasonable or less unjust to devote the proceeds place to those who have none but hereditary of the Income Tax to the Dukes of Westclaims.
minster or Bedford than it is to allow them to The Duke of Cambridge receives as much appropriate ground rents. pay as 1,500 soldiers, and if his pay could be How is this robbery to be stopped, supported doubled as a retiring pension the country would as it is by all the power of law, authority, and be a gainer, for under no circumstances can a custom ? Physical force, resistance on the vast institution like the British Army be what part of the sufferers, is impossible. But it is it ought to be so long as personal merit is dis- just as impossible for a Government to coerce regarded for hereditary claims.
a people if they are determined not to submit Injustice pervades the whole of the Civil to injustice. When a tenth part of the populaService. We give enormous and unnecessary tion are thus resolved the attempt to enforce salaries to the upper departments and starva- unjust demands will fail, and it will be seen tion wages to the real workers. No such that "those have rights who dare maintain inequality is to be found in Democratic coun- | them.” tries, where working men have real influence Charity will never fail to find suitable fields both in legislation and in administration. I for the exercise of benevolence, but its whole
A constant system of robbery goes on under sale application as a corrective of injustice has the name of compensation. When the ground always led to disappointment. Destructive required for the Law Courts was cleared the methods do not commend themselves to senparish parson demanded and received compen sible people. We have to introduce improvesation for the removal of a poor population ments into existing society as repairs are made which he was paid paid for looking after. No on railways without stopping the trains. To abuse, however flagrant, can be abolished with prevent injustice, i.e., cease to do evil, should out “compensation," whereas the only sound be the first aim of the genuir e reformer principle of compensation is to pay those who Working men now know that practical polihave suffered from wrong, not those who have tics mean comfort and abundance instead of benefitted thereby.
want and starvation. They know that the We pay a “ Charity Commission ” £38,000 | deliverance of themselves, of their wives, of a year, which employs itself in taking from their children, and of their children's children the poor and giving to the rich.
depends upon their intelligent and self-denying Our system of currency is so arranged as to efforts. But the cry arises from all sides, How benefit wealthy capitalists and give them great can we work ? What shall we do? What leader advantages over traders of moderate means. shall we follow? There is no leader; and at
Under the agreement made with the railway present no leader is wanted. companies, who can command votes in Parliament, they profit to the extent of £300,000! “The truth shall make you free," per annum, under arrangements recently made and every man can learn to know and to for the Parcels Post, while the public lose, and spread the truth. The time is coming when postmen have increased work, in some cases every one must think for himself. When a man without any increase of pay.
sees that he is robbed let him talk over the . But all these items of fraud sink into in- | matter with someone else who may also see it, significance when compared with the rob- and let the two talk to a third. Where two or bery of land. This robbery, in the shape of 'three are gathered together in the name of
truth and honesty much may be done. Acease spreading the leaven of truth and justice. social evening with half-a-dozen friends may Thus, without violence, but with a force as accomplish much. There are men among the gentle and as powerful as a sunrise, a blessed working classes with clear heads, stout hearts, revolution may come about, when every man and keen eyes who alone, or in company with will sit under his own vine and under his own a few others, may do great things for the fig-tree, none daring to make him afraid. deliverance of their order. Let them watch for opportunity, use it when it comes, and never
THE SKYE ATROCITIES.
indice duty w shonla police cannot mergencies of
It may seem strange to apply the above term sented to the Government, or we must to the events which have and are presently assume they represented, that all ordinary taking place in Skye under the authority of means of collecting the rates in Skye the British Government, but we shall justify it had failed, and that extraordinary appliances by proving that these were and are dishonest were necessary in order to save the machinery in conception, illegal in execution, and cruel in for poor relief and education from coming to a procedure.
standstill for want of funds.
But what were the actual facts ? " At the Dishonest in Conception.
end of March the total amount of arrears Dr. Cameron, M.P., in a masterly exposition of Poor and Education Rates in Skye was of the whole question which he gave to a £5,200. Of that sum £3,600 was owed meeting of the citizens of Glasgow, in the City by the landlords, £1,000 was owed by the Hall, on the 10th November, pointed out, on tacksmen and farmers paying more than the authority of Sir William Harcourt in his £30 of rent, and under £600 was due by memorandom of November 2nd, 1882, to the crofters." Of these arrears due by the Lord Advocate, that “Recourse should not crofters, it was pointed out by Mr. J. G. Macbe had to military aid unless in cases of Kay, of Portree, long before the expedition set sudden riot or extraordinary emergency, to sail for Skye, that much of them were against deal with which the police cannot be obtained ; people long since known to be dead or removed and soldiers should not be employed upon from the island, and more of them stan ling police duty which is likely to prove of a con- against the names of those at that moment tinuing character.” Dr. Cameron proved that actually upon the pauper roll. It can easily no such emergency had arisen. The landlords be seen from the figures quoted above that the had declined to pay their proportion of the landlords and the tacksmen were the principal Poor Rates and School Rates, on the ground delinquents. Their arrears could easily have that they were not receiving the rents which been forced at any moment by the law of they wanted, thus, all unconsciously, demon- Scotland, which provides for the imprisonment strating the fact so often urged by land i of such delinquents, and it is safe to say reformers that landlords contribute nothing that the imprisoument of a few lairds in the towards taxes, except a proportion of what luxurious accommodation of Portree Prison they extort from the produce of labour upon would not have occasioned any commotion the land. Now, there are authorities in Scot- among the populace. Wise in their generation, land who are vested with the power to enforce however, the lairds and the tacksmen, who the payment of these rates. These are the knew all about the expedition to Skye, paid Commissioners of Supply, who are the land- their rates practically when the expedition was lords, and who have to pay a moiety of the in sight of their shores, and then pointed to the expenses of the police, and the Parochial poor crofters as being the only remaining Boards, who are dominatingly composed of delinquents upon whom the full terror of the landlords, factors, and their nominees. These law was to be exercised. These facts either bodies had the means at command of demand were or were not known to Sheriff Ivory. If ing and collecting the amounts due to them, known, and it is almost impossible to doubt but these means they did not employ, because they were, then the expedition was dishonest in an extra staff of policemen, if policemen were conception. If not known, they could have at all required, would have been an extra been known on the most superficial examination, expense to them, and consequently they repre- and hence we argue incompetency. In either case those responsible for the expedition being she had no girl. She was very much frightened, sent were dishonest or incompetent, and ought and before the officers had been long in the to be removed and punished. It is thus shown house she turned sick and fainted. She that there was no reul emergency justifying the remained in a semi-conscious state for some expedition, but there was a
| time, during which one of the constables Landlord Emergency.
stayed behind until she had partially recovered.
At the croft adjoining the woman, who was The new Land Court established in the
in very delicate health, refused to answer any Highlands, having got the power not only to
questions. She was in bed with a baby six fix present fair rents, but to deal with past
months old, and was greatly excited at the arrears, the rackrenters of Skye saw that now
manner in which they ransacked her house. or never must they enforce payment of arrears,
Macdonald, going to the bed where two boys and so went in for the "dirty trick ” of pro
were sleeping together, wakened them, and curing the services of the sailors and marines
asked, Where is your father ?' The boys of Great Britain and Ireland to enforce pay.
were too frightened to answer. They then ment of their arrears of rack-rent under the
opened the chest, but finding nothing went dastardly pretences of collecting legalised |
away.” Further, little boys of 11 years old taxes.
have been arrested and conveyed to prison at Illegal in Execution.
Portree, and there wiled and interrogated by Sheriff Ivory, who is in charge of the expedi- policemen in the apparent guise of fellowtion, at a very early stage in its progress prisoners, with the object of obtaining from quarrelled with the Chief of the Police-force, i them evidence incriminating perhaps their who left the island, and the sheriff then took fathers or near relatives. Then, after they command of the police, from that moment con
have been kept sometimes a day or two, they stituting himself a detective of the people upon are released, as there is "no evidence against whose actions he might be called to adjudicate them." as a judge. The absurdity of this position is Your whole columns would require to be at clear to every one but prejudiced partisans. | disposal to tell all that has been done, but the Sheriff Ivory ought only to have acted as a latest escapade is to our mind the most alarmjudicial oversman, guiding the action of others, Ling for the liberties and possible lives of the but his zeal has outrun his discretion, and in lieges. The Rev. Donald MacCallum. of consequence he committed illegalities. Possibly Waternish, and John MacPherson, of Glenhe aimed at being legal, but if so he is an dale, were arrested on the 13th November and exceedingly poor shot.
lodged in Portree Prison. Mr. MacCallum We have been taught to believe in Scot- was set free on the following Monday, the land that a crofter's hut is as inviolable as 15th inst., on a bail bond of £100. MacPhera nobleman's castle, and that it could not son is still kept in prison. The grounds of be invaded without a warrant judicially their arrest were inciting to resistance of the granted, specifying the persons for whom the legalised forces at a certain meeting where both search was being made, and their offence. were. Why is John Macpherson still kept a All this he has overturned by a mid- | prisoner ? According to the newspapers of night raid upon the township of Herbista, I the day, because his papers, correspondence, where every house, with one exception, was &c., are being overhauled in the meantime, indiscriminately ransacked, without any pro- and, no doubt, translated from vigorous Gaelic duced authority, apparently for the sole purpose into polluted Saxon for the delectation of of arresting any male found upon the premises. Sheriff Ivory. If such things are legal, where Here is a specimen of the legal operation, as is the security for any man who dares to come reported in the Glasgow Herald of 29th October, forwarıl and voice the wrongs of his fellows ! and that paper cannot be accused of sympathy The motto seems to be : Stamp out the agitafor the crofters :-“At another house, in which tion, legally, if possible, but--stamp it out. there was a widow about 70 years of age, the woman was wakened by the glare of a lantern
Cruel in Procedure. on her face. On looking up she saw several Cruel, because of incompetence; cruel, bepolicemen standing close by the bed. She was cause of callousness; cruel, because of inasked by the sheriff-officer where her husband humanity. Incompetent, because it tempted was, and on her saying that she was a widow, resistance, if, indeed, a trap was not laid to they asked her where her son was, to which goad to resistance. With a large force to draw she replied that he was in his grave. Then from, two sheriff-officers were sent into a most they asked where her girl was, and she said disaffected district to serve writs without any