LUKE AND POWER.
Maoriland Worker, Volume 10, Issue 441, 20 August 1919, Page 3
LUKE AND POWER.
Consider Luke a moment. On Armistice day the tramway and powerhouse employees of Wellington were
granted double pay to keep the services going. No one uttered a word of protest/ The other day there were some Peace rejoicings. The same, men naturally expected the same concessions. They reckoned without the worthy first citizen of Wellington, who had just emerged from an exhausting struggle with Sir James Allen as to which of them' should give General Russell his first taste of New Zealand hospitality. Sir James won, but Mr. Luke has received a legal opinion that the Mayor should have handed the distingushed General the first "spot." However, such amenities, whilst mirth-provoking, harm no one. Wlkt. the "tommies" tent in their request to the Mayor, the lutlc jackanapes nearly bounced out of his C.M.<j. He sent a Kaiser-like ultimatum that if these men did not go on working on his terms, they could consider themselves dismissed! Was Mr. Luke annoyed because old man Stout had usurped his place at the head of the Peace procession? Mr. Luke was an "also ran" as a mere M P., happily spared the of close contact with Bob Scrapie owing to the latter's refusal to take part, in the mockery of celebrating something that did not exist. Although Jay Pea Luke may see in these incidents an
attempt (by establishing a precedent, so beloved of the lawyer-politician'; to deprive him of the privilege of bending the "pregnant hinges" of the knee to his Imperial Lovvness (iv stature) when the "heir of Empire" shows off his paces in this "fair and far Dominion," he should have realised that such a message was bound to precipitate the very thing he professes to wish to avoid. Mayor Luke represents the citizens of Wellington —in theory at least. Did he ascertain ihe wishes of his masters in this dispute? How many of Ihe citizens themselves enjoying a full view'of as groat a collection of monstrosities as ever "represented them, would have grudged these civic employees tho double lime demanded? They were missing something which we trust never will be possible again. Not for (hem io gaze, on ihe intricacies of the art of Sir Robert Siout's tonsorial assistant in makins- him presentable and even shaggily picturesque! But to return io our muttons. Mr. Newton, ihe conciliation Commissioner, seeming danger, promptly met the men and the superintendems, and very rightly took it. upon himself to promise the double rates. The dignity of the Mayor has received another affront. (Ho has ceased weighing himself on ihe slot machines.) Instead of being grateful thai an awkward crisis had been skilfully averted, this grievous buffoon bursts out into cries about the Mayor not having been consulted! It is apparently a matter of secondary importance Whether industrial peace is assured or not. so long as his inflated idea of himself is duly acknowledged. He can'(to cite a further instance) allow women and children to remain standing for hours in a queue wet through to the skin, and never think of any amelioration. How different is the* attitude of that desperate Bolshevik, Peter Eraser. M.P.. who investigated the grievances on the spot, and got tho people shelter in the Town Hall. Mr. Luke probably will see in this action aura her 'affront." Does he stand iv the. rain waiting his turn along with his "fellow-citizens" when he requires coal? Or is he too busy reading how tho Mayor of Seattle "sellifcd" the strike in that American