Permanent link to this item
OUR SYDNEY LETTER, Issue 15654, 19 November 1914
OUR SYDNEY LETTER
- A BIG PLACE." The financial position, so far as immediate needs aro concerned, is considerably relieved by the announcement that the Imperial Government are willing to stand behind Australia to the amount of 20 millions. Mr Holman considers that the share j of this State in the bonanza will enable I Him. to maintain his loan expondiimc at j the same rate as that of last year—namely, j about nine millions sterling. To him that I is an immense relief. It he were driven j to attempt anything in the nature of re- \ trenchment he would almost certainly be j unable to resist the insistent demand of a ' largo section of his supporters for some j form or other of a paper currency, that j ruinous expedient which seems to be the I be-all and end-all of a certain school of j what is by courtesy termed '' finance." ; "We have already spent £2,300,000," -Air ; Holman airily informed a Melbourne re- I porter. " New South Wales is a big place," he was kind enough to add, by j way of information and explanation. If j every other State were to spend as ranch money in proportion to its population, the outlook for the Commonwealth would be i less encouraging than it is. THOSE TROUBLESOME PRICKS. The Necessary Commodities Commission, in respect to new season's wheat, are about j to consult the Victorian Government he- I fore again committing themselves. This, | in itself, is a confession of error in rela- ! tion to the miserably and ridiculously low i price which they fixed for old wheat " off i their own bat." Meanwhile, the market j is paralysed. Millers can't get wheat to j grind—so they fay, at least—and farmers i are in a difficulty about seed. if there I was any shadow of justification for seizing | wheat at a price far below its market value j in order to supply millers who were well ■ able to pay any price that was going, there i would seem to be much greater justifiea- \ tion for seizing wheat to supply the farm- ! ers, many of whom are struggling men, j reduced by the drought to the verge of J ruin. When a Government once shows it- I self squeezable it must make up its mind to be squeezed by any and every one who i can spin a plausible tale. The price of ; wheat, which might very safely have boon : left to competition, was " dealt with " ni j most approved fashion. The price of gas. \ however, is to be raised. An application ! is also before the Commission for permission to raise the price of sugar, which is very much dearer in other parts of Ihe j world than in Australia. j NEWSPAPERS TABOOED. \ There was some gleam of justification | for prohibiting the export of necessary i commodities of which there was any reason , to fear a scarcity, also, perhaps, of dealing i similarly with goods such as coal and wool. ' which might find their way into the hand.-; ; of the enemy. But it came as a complete ! surprise when the Commonwealth Govern- \ ment prohibited the export of newspapers, j Surmise was, of course, busy with the j reasons which had promoted this drastic i course, but so far none have been .assigned. The Government have sources of inform;!,- i ' tion which arc not available to outsider?, j : i i*. is stitlicient, under the eircum- j : Caucus, that they consider the prohibition i ! necessary, ft is being obeyed very lov- ; I ally, and without a word of complaint,. ! Curiosity, however, is very active, ami ! when nil the) trouble, is over it will cer- i tainly seek to be enlightened. j THI-: PROHIBITION OF POISONING, j The Council of the Pastures' Protection '■ Boards are strongly protesting against th.circular recently issued by the Minittvr of Agriculture prohibiting the poisoning of j rabbits within 25 miles of ;u:y freezing ' works. The Minister's object is plain enough. The trapping of rabbits for luuu, both for home and foreign consumption, is a solid fact, which can neither be abolished : I nor explained away. The practice of poison- I | ing is obviously dangerous, in this connecI tiun, besides being calculated to injure the : i market. Some declare that it is attended by other evils, such as the poisoning of . the birds which destroy Hies, eato. ; .'itiais, '; and the like. The pastoralists, on the other hand, see no justihation for trapping or freezing rabbits. They say, with every : appearance of truth, that so long as proiit ; can be made out the pest it will never be ; destroyed. Moreover, both by the law of the hind and for the 1 fake of self-pre-servation they are compelled to destroy the vermin, and no mode of effecting this is so efficacious as poisoning. It is c!.-,;r that the two positions are irreconcilable, and it is not easy to see how tin- Irouhlc is to be adjusted. It is certainly rough on the pastoraiist that he should be finding pasture, without an atom of compensation, for the rabbits, and that from these ! rabbits, which aro doing him so much | injury, the trappers, whom he regards as i trespassers, should be roaming over his I run and malting profits at his expense. ! AGAINST NATURAL JU-STIO". I A comical interlude occurred m tic I Arbitration Court yesterday. I'lie (|iie-.- | tion was whether, during the war, v.-:;.; -.-• : Iwards should decree any further in- n c ■•• ■•■; | iii wages. The represent;!live ■■ ' •■ ■ Painters' Union informed Judge hi who presided, that he had instrui i '. union that the.. Court, bad no pnv.-, . ;.-> make such an order, as it *vr::', i ',,-- "against natural justice." His lionm- expressed very "natural" surprise tha! natu ral justice should he mentioned in such .: connection. Decisions were often givi \< ::. the court, he said, by which, idlii-.iigh only two parlies were represented, hj ■■:.,-,- dieds of thousands of individuals, firms. and companies were affected. "Is that. against natural justice?"' hj ,; very pertiI uently asked; The l<-"--s cue has to say I ahout '"justice" in such circumstances the j better for tine's own self-respect. No d---i eision was given, the. case being adjourned. j The economic conditions which compelled : the inquiry will, no doubt, in due" time compel their own solution. When it bjI comes a choice between low wnp< ; and i no wages, common sense, which is ,'losely j allied to " natural justice," will beijiii to ! have a look-in. i WON'T HOLD TT. 1 Everyone win, has had anything ; 0 do i with that ino-st prosaic person th- j rift-r | is familiar with the expression " You can't I get more into a pint pot than it will hold.'' ! The length and number of your columns i rigidly fix tho a.monnt of matter that can | be got- into them, and- when you give him j too much ''copy," no matter how brillia::,I y >tir lucubrations, either thoy have in ' •>'; j sacrilicc.l of else something else has : > [be wicririced to make room for tlvjn. Tl ■■■ I bankers aro playing the part of the prosaic printer to the financial geniuses who are advocating aa enormous issue of paper I money as a moans of enabling the GovernI ment to maintain, in a time, of drought, | of depression, and of severe monetary ' pressure, owing to th-e war. the. same rate ' of expenditure that it reached when the i financial horizon was clear, when w-c had | just reaped the fruits of a good season, I when ihc prices of our staple product.-; i were high, and there was no difficulty in j obtaining access to the, world's markets I to -.oaiis-c them. It s-Csitis a toiernbly crazy I proposition to be;zin wiih. Still, it rani v,ot be denied that it is quits possible to ■ print paper money to the full capacity of ; the proses, and the supply of p:tpe-r aVail- : able. What is more to the purpose, it is ', easy to find quite a number of people who would gladly accept euch money from the i Government, in. preference to i:o ntoitvy : at. all, or to trving to find employment , ;\n th-.-r:<-b.v. "Rsgniding the..-.- h.clots ; of th:' !»>.>i:a.n, there is no nio.-.' dilliciil:, j than tivie ;.- .ibujt eliding in "copy" | bjr th* wmm.
WHAT WOULD BECOME OF IT* j Bur. what is to bo done with ail this ! "money" af('_r\v.-nds? Ordy a certain, j amount of i:uti>.-!:ly can ba kept in c.ircu- I k<tio:i. ]f that amount is exceeded, the i remainder accumul.ii.es as a useless sur- j j,lus. It finds its way to tho banks. Tli", •: banker, like tho printer, asks : What are. : wo to do with it'.' Anci, worse still, what • are ilie banker:, to do with, a constantly- j bici-'-asjng qutuilitv of k, such as is fore.- | s).i.d:>w..-o. bv lh-.- >!on,«tv pi-oj.oßnl V. jh»k- ' 20 millions'or :■>': So lopg and so T:;-:- as : the overplus v.as conve;tib!e ini.-> g-.id it i would be co converted, for gold is re-I i monev, available at its l'uil villus u'ii the i world over, u::iike paper, wiuoii, outs:d«: ' the cotmtrv in which it. is issued, can on! 4- ; bo disposed of :it a wofrd discount. That! is tht; exi>k,ne:.:e:i o f " Grcsham's law" —i namclv, thai when " fiat" money and gold lire cirem iL.ee; ;-idc by fide, the 1:1- i ferior mcniv always drive.-, out the. <■■:]'■■- j dor. We ji'niv !••■■;v liiioa it tint it would ! n.it long bo'allowed to hj? coi:vi:rti:>le, j ••But sanely," it. :» urged, "the credit oC tho State is good for a paluy 20 p.iiiiioiis. ■ : That w so. But the credit- of no .ittite ■ or. tho bankeis aie trying to get iu-, to see, can keep in circulation among tho , iKopio millions ir.oi-i money than they '• actually »! to c.nry on their business. ; If more is i'ore«-d on than, they will c;::«.- i fully hoard thek sp-ioie., and pay out t!i..-i shin plaster.;. TU plethora of the one ! and the scaicity of the other will keep on i inci-easinj- all th- tune till the cUrk. star- j jug folly of tin.' jiiec-idme Incomes plain! even to tho ciinencv o>iack- themselves. It is not. a question of credit, but a quo.-- | tion of tho amount ol money that can he, kept in circidat on without the note* I Loinic to a dkcount. and tho cumin unity j to this extern, wiit.ng its-..-if down a-« mi-j able to mc.ot its hoi.cr-i dig: gom< nt-s. Tho j proposal is. in uality, to compel tho j people to ac->.-pt as good for 2C<, pajH-r i vouch":.-: which in a very tdioit time would I b<- worth vi-ty mucli "k'.=s— 15s, 10s, or | what not. The aby-t- o! public inip:/ci;n!- j oiifv whii.-Ii }-.<■ < poned up by thos<« wild i expV'dioi.r.a is -s-:ni])!y boi.toinkcps. '1 ho , bolder th" nJuir.'o, th.' civati-r tho <lopth I that wiil be* r--ac]K:<l. Tli? Sr.-tto Proimcr | r-oeins to koc this pretty clearly. Nothing j lint di-:asi<r, liou-.-vei, v.-iil eon-| vinco some of bis t-upporUnw. j Xovo;nb-.-r 3. i
OUR SYDNEY LETTER, Issue 15654, 19 November 1914
Use these buttons to limit your searches to particular dates, titles, and more.
Print, save, zoom in and more.