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SIR JOSEPH WARD AT AKAROA.

_ « I The Oddfellows' Hall wa3 crowded to over- ; flowing on Saturday night with a represents- \ tive I'cniiiEiula audience, when Sir Joseph Ward B(l'.lrer-?L'(1 the'electors. The lunyor, Mr 6. lmstrong, was in the ohaii , , (md introdiiGPd Sir Joseph Ward to the audience. In doing bo, he said he \vn- Sir .To.-eph Ward h-id come to Akiuoa He siid ho believed hp was ni'psidiii!.: ovim , tho lurp/st political meet, intr hil'i in Akarnii for many ypa>P. They hud wilii them thai nicht a gentleman, nnt only well known in pnliiic.il life, bit a friend of the pii'p'c. Sir -1 o-r- f h Ward had done g'Hid woik Pns'iua-t--r-General, During hia term nt cliirse a> Premier f c had {,'iven H.M.S. New Zealand to the Old Country. That was the rloed of ft "rent Imperialist nnd a great man, After e< ent? proved o doubte'B the forethought of Hr Jo?eph Ward in> c then he i ad been instiuiiipn'al in putting on Stiitu'c Book the Conpul-oy Military Bill one of the best Statutes ever lie linked for a i'a r and impartial hearing for Sir Jo-eph W'inl. nnd did not doubt that this would bn aocoified him. fciir JoPeph Ward, who was received with gieat apjjlaus", referred to the kindly intro 'iuction by ihe Mayor It was a pleasure to 1 him to bo in xkaroa Hβ bad been in politi\cal lifo for '28 years, nnd there were many plnce* in New Z iilaiul h- had not visited', lit; did not know as much about Akaroa as a native, but he believed that ho knew a good di a! about the beautiful spot. Ho referred to the natural advantages of the district and to the natural beauties. Hn was sure the dny would uiiiao whnn i,ho iron h.orFO would travel down to Arinnra. Th<>n, foi , (lie first I tiinn in its history, the vUic.u would forjie ! ■fhfia'l, and people would be drawn there in "renter numbeis than the- mont sangLiine poison would expect at this tinit". Ho was ■ delighted to come to tho place where the

willows h'-rn Napoleon's gravo were lirst plnnU'A by thosp devoted Biionnparti.stF. He believed there *nevr>r was is. time when (he French and Kn;;!k-h were r-o attached They had joini'd with the Belgians and Russians, who had dotemniuil ihitthe Emperor, who dusired to bo head of Europe, should have the set back of his life. Ho spoke of tho merTwho were fighting for life and and said that, though war was a dreadful he boliovod that it was fortunate that it had occurred now, becuuse, if it had corn p later, it would have bien harder to combat Germany, It was natural t 0 thiuk of. the French in Akaron, the place

™— -™ ______ I which the old Fiench pioneers had chosen i as a settlement. He believed there were ' few of these historic pioneers Iffo. Hfi then referred to & different class of warfare—the v;oiHical hattles—which wero bloodless ones. Public men Igot many knocks and shot at by many opponents; but nfter all h<! won. dered how ',the people who were ro ready to public men would behave in their place. He referred to the criticism by newspaper men. how, using the editorial "we," a man would tell public men how to run the country, local body men how to run their Council, and the public at large how to conduct their homes. These critics were never s en, and though the "we 1, which predicted so much nnd advisfd so much might come frern a fine ,chnp, he would like to see the : Kama man up on a public platform open to ' the criticism ho was fo willing to give to ! otbers. It was necessary there should be criticism, and be had been criticised , once or twice in his time. (Laugh, tei). He had been shot at, and yet was nlive and wall. On the eve of'this battle i for the general election tbeie must be ; criticism, and if the other side objected he did uot cate. It was a mutual affair, and they never hesitated to criticise him. Prior to iiist -'election, Mr Massey in July, 1911, expanded his chest and crocodile tears flowed down his cheeks at the awful manner in which tho speaker was increasing the I public dclit. He said if the people in the country did not stop him the moneylenders in London should. The average of: the J Liberal Government's borrowing was I £H,G00,000 n year. Yet Mr Massey, when he I got into power, in two and a half years made I his average total £6,000,000 and this from I the man who had made that speech in 1911> I The expenditure of the Massey Government lat !h°. end of the year would be £2,000,000 ! f.ver the largest amount apent by the Liberal Government. This statement was true and i undeniable, as the Year Book which was ! being issued after tho election would show, A voice: War time. Kubbifh! The Massey Government did not blnne the war, they blamed the smallpox (laughter), and when the small-pox failed they blamed the strike. The war had not affected the position at all. The country hnd got the authority to borrow £2,000,000, and the Old Country was guaranteeing this amount. He did object to having war timo thrown at him. It was sheer non sensß - . Suppose it wer6 true, then the Government sbould not have held the elections, but postponed them for a, year as he had advocated. As they went on with the election, they should not throw war time at him. A voice : It's going to be Ward time. Sir Joseph Ward . He hoped and believed it wns. He asked if the farmers in the audience had received their taxation papers, and if they had noticed an increase. A Voice: I have not noticed any increase. Sir Joseph Ward: Then that person has no taxes to pay. It was on record that Mr Massey said it was cruel how the people were taxed under the Ward Government, and yet when he came into power he increased the ■amount by 13s per head. They had broken thair pledge to e7fcry man, woman, and child. Then there was the expenditure on public buildings. He was accused of wasting the public money in this way, and yet Mr Ma3sey j was going to spend £1,400,000. J Voice: What about the Akaroa post office '.' Sir Joseph Ward : He had given the auth' ority for this work, which was only a small ! I item. Hβ called attention to the iact that I less last year had been spent on railways j than would be spent on public buiidinps, and I this in war time. With regard to the railJ ways, he objected to the new General MariaIgei's report, wbieh recommended the eon j struetion of a number of engines outride New ; Zealand, and included three ualatial railway j stations. He referred to the way in which j Messrs Massey and Allen had announced be' • for last elcciic'.i what they would do for the j back blocks pett'ers if. they got into power J He guaranteed that of the roads for the back j blocks only one third of the money had been expended, and he was afraid the country ?ettlers would have to wait some time before they got roads over which to take their produce. Tbfiy hail also stopped the making of roads in their opnonents' constituencies. An oihar crime of which hn was accused when Premier wns lavish borrowing. During the Liberal Government's reign they hud borrowpti £4J,0(!0 000 in all, and most of thi: was obtained at % per cent. They would not get the last year book till after the elac tion, but all his sttUaments could be verified by that. From 1891 to 1912, when the Lib,, fi'ftl Government wns in power, there wab a decrpiife of 10/1 in the amount of interest of £1(0, nnrl (Jus decrease mea">t a saving of £7;f5.0(0 in the public debt of £90 000 000, hi- Lib-ra! Government had savert the i prple all ibis amount. One of the hoary Loaded Consorvativn organs bad referred to this matter f c other day. A voice : The "Pies?." Sir Joseph Ward : No. It was the "Olago Daily Time?," but he was prepared to admit ti at the "Press" was capable of wor.-e things. The ' Oiago Daily Times" decVed that the saving was effected solely because money was cheaper. He referred to the fooli-h system by which the present Minister of Finance took up all long-dated loans. He believed when money was dear in making eho't loans and converting them to long ones when the money market eased. He referred to tho way in which the gift of the Dreadnought New Zealand was used against him last election. When the New Zealand came out to the Dominion and graced the harbour of Akaroa, the Government forgot he wna alive. He did not forgot it though. They declared ho had put a fearful burden

J on the people, and referred to a cartoon cirj culatrd before Inet election in which the [ wo'kers were s"en staggering uuder the burden of the Rift Bbip, while he, in a ofeked hat, was holding it in his hand. It was, j absurd to talk of his burdening the worker. [ Ho had rebated to widows, and relieved the small people everywhere. He took care that the Dreadnought should be paid for in five years by tha people who could afford to pay. With regard to in. ternal defonco, there waa a big effort on the part of tho Minister of Defence to make out he had introduced compulsory military training, but he, tho speaker, bad done so.

His enemies declared m preferred the volunteer system and so he did if it was work able. Bβ' referred to the schemes outlined in the Tory papers, and said the "Dominion" had stated in 1909 that the scheme was too costly to consider. The hrave men who had Rone to the front were able to do ao through the Fchema which he had brought inco operation two and a half years ago. His opponents declared now they had h°lpecl with the introduction of the military training system, and yet they never saw a clause of the Bill till it reached ,the House and never helped with one part of the measure. He then referred to the naval defence of New Zealand, and declared it was hia firm belief that we should be undar the navy of the Old Country. The Australian Navy wa , ? proving to be costly, £10,000,000 per annum according, to one authority. The British Admiralty had told him they were prepared to send two Bristol cruisers, two destroyers and three submarines to guard New Zealand waters, and when the war was over they would be free to send a squadron to the Pacific. He asked why the Government did not ask the Admiralty to keep their pledge. He agreed that what what Australia did in the way of building a navy was magnificent, and no one was so ready to Bay so as he wa3, but the point was that, if tbey had a local navy, the conntry would feel the pinch too severely. Iα this matter of naval defence j they should sink all differences and help t<-> keep the old fhg flying und r which they were proud to live. (Applause.) He was oonvinoed that the land tax system should be revised. He referred tn a return by thp j MaSPey Government, which showed thah an owner of Und of unimproved vain* £20,000,000 and.of real value £40,0, 0 ,000 wou'ri have to pay an additional 123 Cd for taxation, and m owner of £40,000,000 un. improved land an additional 12=! Gd. It wa« 11 absurd when people in parts of New Zealand were moving Heaven and Earth to get land. He showed how slow tbe land settlement waa, and how few new pettlers were being put on the land. It was rnanifiesUy wrong when we wanted'an increase in our export?, which would be good for everyone in tbe country. No one regretted the Huntly disaster more than be did, but he must say B mistake had been made. A man was on bis trial at the time, and so ho ;felt that a3 little as possible should he paid nbont the matter Hβ would say, however, iliat V-e Government would have savfd the whole of ihi trouble if .'they had enfold thp report Ffiiit in by Mr" C.Vvin, and not adopted, by which unprotected were not allowed in any mine. Unfortunately that legislation had notuone on. He sad he felt a certain diffidence about discussing the matter, but it was most regrettable that forty three lives should be sacrifice. He could say a good deal more on tne subject. A voice : Let us have it. hir Joseph Wnrd: When a man wvi nn his trial it wa3unfair, and he felt constrained to stop there. 'At the conclusion of Sir Joseph Ward's address, \Mr J. C. Free spoke a few words. He expressed his gratitude to Sir Joseph Ward in responding to Mr G. Armstrong's invitation to come to Akaroa. Mr Arm' strong had nsked him seve-al times. Hβ . expressed a firm belief that the Libsral Party were going to win on December 10, and faith in the v eat Coast in particnlai. Mr W. Sun'ckell moved—That this meeting of P ninsula res dents thanks Sir Joseph Ward for his address, expresses confidence in him and his party, and hopes that they will be successful at the general election on ' December 10. Seconded by Mr W. Glynao, and oarriei , , with a number of dissentients. Sir Joseph Ward tbnnked them for the way they had passed tbe motion, and be also thanked those in the audience who had

said no. Ho believed if they put their bonds to thfir hearts no young meu could declare they honestly believed in the Tory Party. He aj?a'n thanked them for the way they bad rfceived him Mr It. Latter called for three cheers for Lady Ward, which were given most heartily.

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Bibliographic details

SIR JOSEPH WARD AT AKAROA., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXIII, Issue 3455, 24 November 1914

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2,365

SIR JOSEPH WARD AT AKAROA. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXIII, Issue 3455, 24 November 1914

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