THE TWO LEADERS
PRIME MINISTER AT PARNELL. The Hon. W. F. Massev addressed a crowded meeting in Parnell last night. Ha received an ovation on rising to speak. The Prime Minister said that tho proposal of Sir J. G. Ward to admit certain cheap classes of clothing free of duty if he was returned to power threatened disaster to the woollen mills of New Zealand and their thousands of cmnlovecs. “ I don't go to extremes in Free Trade or Protection," declared Mr Massey. M e have in this country a lot of woollen mills. There are mills at Auckland, Onohung.i, Napier. Petoue, Kaiapoi. Oamaru. Ashburton, Mosgiel, and elsewhere, and. if this proposal means anything, the duty <s to be taken off the material required for th« purpose of making goods. That is whore the woollen mills come in. V he.t about the people employed at tbs mills, and the people who have invested money in that industry I do not believe Parliament will agree to auch a thing. On the question of Naval Defence, the lion, gentleman said : The Emden had done more damage to British shipping than the rest of tho German vessels put together. They were not out of the wood yet, though he believed the roasts were now in no danger. He had come into contact with officers during the time tho danger existed. It was not for nothing that tho transports were recalled to Auckland recently, and it was not for nothing that the coastal lights were put out. lie could not go closer to it than that. There were not belter officers in (he British Navy than those on the ships here. (Cheers.) Those men could have tackled German ships with smiles on their faces and jokes on their lips; but the probability was that they would never have coma back. Ho was not at all certain that a naval conference would not have to be held before the end ot the war. It- would be for the purpose of considering tho question of the naval defence of the Pacific. He thought that Australia, Canada. New Zealajid. South Africa., and Britain itself should join to place ships in the Pacific sufficiently powerful to deal with any fleet ’ that might come along for many years to come. (Cheers.) They could riot do that without rest. At the present time they were paying £140,00u per annum interest, and sinking fund on the Dreadnought, and £IOO,OOO per annum as a contribution to tho Admiralty, out of which would corns the cost of maintenance of the Philomel. New Zealand for all | time should remain one of the Dominions of the Empire. (Applause.) Tho Minister of Defence, when he went Home, askid tho Imperial authorities to send out the two ships previously agreed upon, offering another £50,000 by way of subsidy. The authorities said they could not spare the ships. It would rest at that, but ho wanted to impress on tho people the necessity of avoiding tho trouble and humiliation that had been experienced of late through having nothing fit to protect our coasts. At the conclusion of the meeting a vote of thanks to the Prime Minister and confidence in the Government was carried by an overwhelming majority. LIBERAL LEADER AT WELLINGTON, j Sir Joseph Ward was accorded a tre- j mendons ovation last night when he ad- j dressed a, meeting of over 4,000 people in j the Town Hall at Wellington. His ap- i pearance on the platform raised prolonged cheering, and the ovation was of such a duration as to be unique in the history of a party leader’s reception anywhere in the. Dominion. Mr C. M. Luke (Mayor) presided. Sir Joseph Ward began by expressing his warmest appreciation for the magnificent ovation accorded him. He took it as being an indication of the people being anxious to hear something of what the Liberal party proposed to do when they came into power, as they ’would do on December 10. (Great cheers.) The warmth of feeling exhibited towards that party from one end of the country to the other could not be mistaken bv their most bitter opponents. It would \>o a superhuman impossibility to reconstruct the tide of popular thought in favor of the party that were not put into power by the people. (Cheers.) A Voice: “By rats.” Sir Joseph Ward : By tho treachery of men who were returned to support' the Liberal party. This was the first time in the history of New Zealand that statements were made by public men that things were being done in connection with the rolls which were discreditable to the country, and were a disgrace to anybody ■ onccrhod in them It was their bounded du>y to ascertain if there were any officers holding a position of neutral responsibility who would allow any Minister of the Crown to have men placed on the rolls under a wrong designation—acting dishonestly for tho pnroose of having votes transferred improperly from one roll to mother. Tho Liberals wanted a fair fight, but the votes, in many were not going to be recorded fairly in a great many instances. For the sake of the future public, life of (his country sanction should not be given to any attempt to rig the rolls in the interests of any particular party. (Cheers.) When they saw men enrolled as commercial travellers who had never been such it was time for the authorities to prosecute whoever was responsible. What a. difference there was, between the position now and that at the last election. (Loud applause.) At the last election the Government were promisers, but now the, people, had an opportunity of judging how far those dec tion pledges had been fulfilled. The Reformers were anxious for the workers' sympathy, and professed to be sympathetic to Labor. A Voice: " Crocodile tear*.” (Laughter.) Sir Joseph Ward; "Yes, crocodile fears.’’ An example of what the Reformers were trying to tdl tho workers was contained in one of their circulars. This said that in a year and a-half the Mascoy Governmcnt had advanced to workers £459,075, and the Ward Government in five years had lent only £565,225 to work ers. Tho Government party forgot that they had laid on the table of the House last zeasion. tho annual report of the Advances Department, which showed that for those very five years tho Ward Government had advanced £1,816,115 to worker?. It wax a difference of only a million and a-half. (Laughter.) Bur. (hat, was only one sample of the kind of tiling that was being done by tho Reformers. In an attempt to discredit their opponents ono of the Miiiisteis had oven gone the length of telling ;i Wellington audience that Mr Massey had been lespe-nxible for inUoducing the advances !o workers legi.-le.tion in 1906. Needless to say. that was absolutely incorrect. (Applause.) The Reformers had descended to another method of trying to discredit hnr.. Mr Okey, tho Refonn'candidate for Now Plymouth, had suggested that the people should ask him (bur Joseph) hew much wheat his firm had in stor-a waiting for bigger prices. Now, he (Sir Joseph) had heard a. similar inference before. While he was in the North a prominent Reformer in tho South bid made a similar slatemem. He bad taken action regarding that Reformer, who, when faced with the statement, denied having made it; but hj» knew how to deal with people who went round hinting at thinge like tliat. He had wired to bis firm in Invercargill to. find out what wheal they had actually in store, and th" answer was that in 12 months they had purchased 26 sacks of wheat to sril as seed to farmers. He and his arm had never been operators In wheat, but he wondered if Mr Okey had operated m the oil companies to which the present Government were now lending public money. A Voice : What about sugar? Sir Joseph Ward eaid he understood that thsi'e" lia 1 been rises lately which were not justified. The Liberal party would not allow that. There was power to deal with monopolies under tho Trusts Act now, but if that was found insufficient the Liberals would not Hesitate to place on the StS-tuta Book further' jwwer to deal with any attempt at exploiting the people. Xbe main reason which the Reformers urged upon the people to put them back into office was in connection ■with the strike- As a matter of fact, they bad bungled the strike from beginning to end. (Loud applause.) They had thrown off the responsibility and handed affairs .sv« tja.4 tfwji
had been representative of a special claae. There was on it neither retailer, farmer, nor worker. The Liberals in Parliament had known their responsibilities. They had met, and agrcc4 not to harass the Government during the time of trouble, but the Government now were trying to ray that the Liberals bad prolonged the strike. The Government had not, done their duty, or they would nob have allowed the strike, for it could have been stopped if matters bad been gone about in a sensible manner. Who had suffered from the strike? Not the squatter, because ho bad no wool and no meat going away ; but. it was tho small farmer who had suffered, for it was the man who had been sending away butter and cheese who had been hit hardest, and lie ronid tell them that, it, was tho small fanner who wan now realising how ho had been guded. Mr W. T. Hildreth (Mayor of Karon) proposed tlrs following r-’f.olution : —‘‘That Ibis meeting of ■Wellington electors tender to S-ir Joseph Ward their hearty thanks for tho statesmanlike address delivered by him tlrr. evening ; that we cordially welcome hi? triumphal return to the position ot tin? chief guide of the, political destinies of this Dominion ; and that we pledge ourselves to support and further the interests of tho representatives of T)"mocracv throughout, the Wellington districts.'' This was seconded by Mr J. J. M'Grath, .and carried with treat enthusiasm and with loss than a dozen dissentients. Cheers for Sir Joseph Ward, the Liberal party, and the various Liberal candidates for th« Wellington seats closed the proceedings.
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THE TWO LEADERS, Evening Star, Issue 15668, 5 December 1914