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The Ashburton Guardian. TUESDAY, DECEMBER 7, 1880. The Pruning Knife.

TOWN EDITION. [lssued at 5 p. m. ]

One of the chief characteristics of the Ministry in power has been its pluck. When it was announced that the colony paid away a million of money every year in salaries, the settlers everywhere stood aghast, and quite a howl for reduction followed. Government did not fail to make these reductions, and every department of the Civil Service has suffered from the the ebb-tide that supervened. But while all hands favored reduction in general, there seemed scarcely anybody who was prepared to allow that any reduction was at all necessary in his own particular quarter. However, notwithstanding all sorts of influences brought to bear on Government, the knife has been inserted, and an almost incredible number of civil servants have found that their aid to the colony’s business can be done without. This reduction will of course tell on the next financial statement, and though there are numbers of men who have received their walking tickets who must suffer hardship to a greater or less extent by the change, there must inevitably be a saving to the colony. Signs, however, are not wanting that Government are not to be allowed to cut off the nurslings of the Civil Service with impunity, and we will not be astonished if, during the next session, the Opposition espouse the cause of the civil servants, and attempt to make capital out of what they are pleased to call the injustice aud inhumanity of the reigning power. But it is well to bear in mind, when the champions of the civil servants tell their woful tales of suffering endured by the unfortunates, who, up to the advent of the Hall Ministry, made their living in the colony’s pay, and in doing work which recent events have shown could very well have been left undone, or required only half the number of hands or heads to do it—that the welfare of the colony is the first consideration of the settler, and not the comfort of the civil servants. It will come well indeed from the apostles of extravagance that formed the following of Sir George Grey, to speak of injustice and inhumanity, when it is remembered that to them we owe finding our finances at low water, and almost bankruptcy staring us in the face. The good sense of the New Zealand constituencies will keep them straight in regard to who has saved the colony in its hour of peril, and to whose incorruptible integriity and sterling pluck they owe the firm policy of economy that has been followed. Mistakes have no doubt been made in this policy—the railway tariff, for instance—but these will no doubt be rectified, on maturer consideration, when Government discover that they have been removing fruit-bearing branches as well as suckers in their anxiety to prune. Next year we expect a dissolution, and a general election will follow. It is then we expect to hear the “ injustice and inhumanity ” cry ; but we expect it to fall on ears that tingled at the exposures of the Grey Government’s failures and foolishness, and that can distinguish between the sophistry of defeated and dissappointed place-hunters, eager to seize on any chance to cajole the public, and the hard facts, stern and undeniable, that the history of the colony during the past two years has laid bare.

The Inquest on the Late Mr. C. C. Hubkell. —At the inquest yesterdays, after the Coroner had briefly explained the medical evidence, the jury returned the following verdict: —“ That the deceased met his death from an overdose of laudanum, taken to obtain relief from neuralgic pain, the jurymen believing he was perfectly sane, and had no intention of destroying himself.” The School Treat. —At a special meeting of the School Committee last night, the members who had been out canvassing made a report. They had met with very fair success, but had not raised enough to enable the Committee to meet all expenses. A considerable portion of the town still remained to be canvassed, and it is hoped that those residents not yet visited will be liberal. Mr. E. G. Wright wrote, in reply to the Chairman’s letter, that he would be willing to meetany difference between the charge made by railway authorities for a special train to Lagmohr, and the sum the Committee were able to pay. Mr. Back wrote to say that the charges made by the railway were the lowest he was permitted to make, and he could not reduce the terms. The sum of Ll2 was voted to the purchase of toys, &c., to be given as prizes in the children’s sports, and the clerk was ordered to ask Mr. Shury to again kindly undertake the purchase of the toys, the Committee’s experience of Mr. Shnry’s ability in this direction being very pleasant indeed. Further arrangements were deferred till Friday’s meeting at which also ordinary business of the month would be transacted. The Revs. Beattie and Hands wrote expressing their willingness to take part in the annual examination, and to devote such time to it as they could afford. Rev. Mr. Keall wrote declining to undertake a duty that had been well provided for by Government already. It was decided to add the names of the Rev. C. Fraser and Mr. Joseph Ward to the list of examiners. It >yas also decided to advertise for another mistress at a salary of LOO

Civil Cases.— The following civil cases were disposed of by the Justices to-day : —-Mutch and M'Kenzie v. Thorean— Claim L2 10s., and same v. W. M'Nair, LI 10s. Gd. Judgment in each case for plaintiffs by default. Stephens v. Boil -au —Claim L 5, judgment summons. Adjourned for a week. Stray Cattle.— -Constable Trcvellyan, out on the rampage last month, dropped down on quite a troop of horses that “ witfcled free” on the Wheatstone Drain road. To-day the owners of those horses were dealt with by the Mayor, Dr. Trevor, and Mr. 0. P. Cox, who occupied the bench. James Escott, two mares and two foals at large on the Wheatstone Drain road ; William Stephens, one horse ; and Patrick Tulley, two horses—all were fined ss. each and 7s. costs. Mr. Tully pled that he had obtained liberty to use the ground on which his horses were, but the Bench would have none of such plea, and. suggested that Mr. Tulley should ask Mr. Grigg to pay the fine.

Real Aristocracy,— Real aristocracy is the class eminent by personal qualities, and it goes without assertion, according to the proverb, that a certain quantity of power belongs to a certain quantity of faculty. Whoever wants more power than the legitimate attraction of his faculty is a politician, and must truckle for it. It is the whole game of society in the politics of the world. He will always contrive to seem, without, the trouble of being. The man of character has no taste for attention, none for a contest of talents. He is wholly real ; he cannot he flattered, he cannot be insulted. Only himself can measure to please him. His words are things. He does not add to his denial the sanction of an oath. He says to the juror, “ You had your oath ; I put my oath into my affirmation. ” — Emerson. The By-Laws.— Mr. A. Thiele pegs out his horses with an iron tether-peg a yard long. He believes someone helped this long peg out of the ground, and let his horse loose. That unchristian act on the part of some mischievous person to-day cost Mr. Thiele a contribution of ss. towards the borough exchequer.' John Worner’s horse was astray in Mona Square. The borough funds profit ss. by that fact. James Wilkie, Secretary to the Racing Club, rode down to the Mail office on the night before the first day’s races, to see a proof of the race card. He edited that card for an hour and a half. Meanwhile, his horse had no such interesting literature to engage his attention, and took leave of his moorings. Constable Neill found the animal and anchored him in Muir’s stables. Mr. Wilkie wanted to know why, in accordance with the by-laws, the horse was not taken to the pound. The police explained that stray saddle horses were more likely to be found during race times if sent to livery stables than if sent to the pound. Mr. Wilkie said lie bad four couriers out after that horse. The inevitable ss. had to be contributed. Ouida on English Humor.- —“ Ouida” undertakes, in the Whitehall Eerie if, to express her views on what James Payn, in the Nineteenth Century, called “ The Literary Calling.” She does not wholly agree with Mr. Payn in some of his conclusions. She writes: “Is there anything so desolate in the whole range of human inanities as forced or self-con-scious witticisms 1 And humor is not wit, though the English mind too often confuses the one with the other. True humor, such as is contained often in the cartoons of Tenniel and the social drawings of Du Maurier, is by no means wit, which is a thing more subtle, more elegant and more incisive. Ido not think that the English public, as a rule, understand wit at all; they like broad farce, and even of humor there is little trace among the writers now ; a dull bufoonery, a Dickens-and-water are the too general substitute. For all the dreary things under the sun is that set clown’s grin which the English mind calls ‘ humor. ’ The American humor is rather the grin on the face of a corpse ; it is real humor, though of a ghastly and grim sort.” German Officers and their Men.— If the weather in Germany has been anything like that which we have had in England during the last two or three nights the troops employed in the autumn manoeuvres will have had a fair trial of some of the hardships of war. A bivouac in pouring rain is a set off to the pomp and circumstances which attend great military scenic displays. Yet, like most of the troubles of life, a rainy bivouac sometimes proves not so very bad as it sounds to be. In the first place the men are protected from the wind by high walls of straw or faggots, and in the next place they have issued to them sufficient wood to keep up huge fires during the night. The men are all young, and manage to shorten the dull hours of night by jokes and choruses, which are often heard up to a very late hour. Nor must it be supposed that the German officers share the privations of the men ; on the contrary, if there is no hut or shed available, the men build huts for the officers, who very often entertain a considerable number of their friends. Indeed, there is a rather curious but marked distinction between the relations of German and English officers to their men in war. The German soldier is eminently helpful, the English soldier is trained to ho helpless. The German soldiers take care of their officers, who certainly deserve it by their knowledge of leadership. The English soldier, on the contrary, expects his officers to take care of him. —Pall Mall Gaxette.

Tinwald Temperance Hall. —By an advertisement in another column, our readers are reminded that the newly erected hall, belonging to the Temperance Hall Company, in Tinwald, willbe opened to-morrow evening, by a concert and ball, which promises to be a great success, judging from the names of the ladies and gentlemen who have kindly consented to assist, and also from the energetic manner in which the committee entrusted with the arrangements are working. They seem to be doing all in their power to make the opening celebration a credit to themselves and the company they represent. In connection with the above, we might here state that it is only seven months since this plucky little company was first thought of. Since that time they hare succeeded in establishing themselves as a Joint Stock Company, and they have purchased a section of land, and built their hall thereon. The Company is a small one, their capital being limited to L 250, but they have succeeded in disposing of about 175 shares, and they will open the hall nearly out of debt, in fact the disposal of about twenty-five more shares at LI each, would place the Company entirely out of debt, and this speaks well for the manner in which the provisional directors have conducted their business. The hall is sniall, being only thirty-five feet by twenty, or the same size as the Ashburton Templar Hall, but we have no doubt it will be large enough for the requirements of Tinwald for some time to come. It was designed by Mr. Shearer, of Tinwald, and built by Mr. D. Teppitts, of the same place, who, notwithstanding the lowness of his tender, has executed the work well, and deserves great credit for the honest manner in which he has carried out the whole of his contract. We believe the hall is intended to be let for all purposes for which it may be suitable. We .cannot close our remarks without a word of praise to the gentleman who has up to the present time filled the dual post of secretary to the Company, and chairman of the directors —viz, Mr. Thomas Williams. It is mainly due to his untiring devotion that the Company is able to report such progress ; iii fact the members all agree, that but for him the Company would most likely have died in its infancy. We wish the Company every success. '

A Bye-law that is no Good. —At Court to-day—-before three justices, including the Mayor—-it was decided that no one can bo prosecuted for having a horse or other animal tied up on his own or other private property —that is, under by-law 54, which runs as follows : —-“If any cattle shall be found upon any. land within the Borough, not separated by a sufficient fence from any street or public place within the Borough without any person having charge of such cattle the owner of such cattle shall be guilty of an offence,” etc. A man named Monro had tied up a horse to a dray standing on one of the timber sites in East street. It had been removed from the dray by some one, and when Monro sent his son for the horse the lad could not find it, and came home without it. The constable who gave evidence said the horse had apparently stood a day and a night without food, and it was this fact that induced the information being laid. As no charge of cruelty was made, and as the Bench regarded by-law 54 as ultra vires of the Borough Council, the case was dismissed. Monro lived fifteen miles away from the township, and the police did not think the case of sufficient importance to make him do ajsecond journey in connection with it.

Scandal in High Life. — Asad story concerning one of our oldest and best endowed earldoms will shortly see the light. It seems that a peer, lately gathered to his fathers, whose name he did not endow with great lustre, is now alleged to have been married, and to have had a family at the time he made the only •marriage the world has yet recognised or heard of. The result of this alleged fact, which from all I hear seems but too certain to be established, is that the peer’s widow will cease to be Lady H., and will become plain Miss 8., while her son and daughters, who have recently been brought out in society, will be placed in a very painful position. The young ladies will, however, as I learn, still retain the fortune of L 12,000 a year each, left to them by their grandfather, but their brother will lose an earldom, and with it an income of LOO,OOO a year. I understand that the Queen, who takes the kindliest interest in the poor lady who has been so abused, will, in the event of the worst expectations being realised, probably give her another title in lieu of that whereof she will bo deprived in so shocking a manner. Vanity Fair.

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The Ashburton Guardian. TUESDAY, DECEMBER 7, 1880. The Pruning Knife. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 210, 7 December 1880

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