Trre Hon. J. T. Paul, who was recently roapiK>int«d by the Reform Government to the Legislative Council, and thus spared the expensive and searching ncrc&sity for determining his true political value by a popular test, has no confidence in the Government. Th?y have failed ii, eveiything possibly save in their wise appointment of Mr Paul —an appointment which cannot be challenged in its political or personal merits. Though it may smack of something very like ingratitude, the Hon. J. T. Paul has a perfect right, as a kind of Saul among the workers—a remark that is entirely froo from offensiveness—to foe] a lack of confidence in the Reform Government, his method of demonstrating it is distinctly benee.th the accredited dignity of a member of the non-party branch of the New Z«i'ar.d Legislature. One would have imagined that the canity of reason which has marked Mr Paul's political career with a splendid consistence uncommon in politicians, would -have prevented him from attending a rally of partisans and deliberately flouting the unwritten canons of revisory legislative chambers all over the world. The rally was a proper demonstration of party enthusiasm, and was conducted admirably by Mr Hamel. whose tact tempered the smouldering heat of a small section of ths capita! meeting, which was marred only by the indiscreet, undignified, and somewliat hysterical " effusion " (to use his own word) of the Hon. J. T. Paul. If his attitude is to be taken as a shadow of Legislative Councillors' tactics when tho Upper House becomes an Elective Chamber, wo hope that the Government, whuther Reform, or Liberal, or Labor, will repeal the Act that abolishes the present nominative Council, and spare New Zealanders from a duplication of the bitter partisan methods, which too frequently turn the House of Representatives into a " bear garden." It is far below the spirit and purpose of the Legislative Council—a purely revisory body—to ha-vo its members, and particularly one of its sanest members, take an aggressively hostile part in a bitter campaign against the Government, who were net loath to recognise and reward Mr Paul's genuine but more dignified services to Labor. It is quit© possible that Mr Paul may yet experience, as many other Labor champions have- learned, that among the workers ho will bo as a Saul reversed: that instead of seeking a kingdom ho will find his father's asses.
A Saul Among the Workers.
We note with an amusement that is not easily fociii-ed in politics that Mr Paul has no personal grievance against tho Press, bub is almost hysterically entry at the
manner in which the Press, and particularly the Dunedin ' Evening Star,' have unfairly misrepresented and maligned political parties and certain politicians, "strictly in line with German tactics." This is as the wildness and foolishness of Saul before his conversion. If Mr Paul had carefully studied Press criticism as to the wisdom or folly of swopping horses while crossing a stream, he would havo noticed that the point made by this journal was the danger in swopping, not a hack for a thoroughbred (to employ his own phrase), but in changing a team of plodding ploughhorses for a team of thoroughbreds, bucking horses, and a donkey or two. Ae for designating as a "Red Fed" Mr Moore, a candidate for Wellington Suburbs, wo claim, under the approved practice of all newspaper*, to hold no responsibility for the opinions or misstatements in correspondence or advertisements, so long as they are free from actionable mattor. It is refreshing to know, however, from the Hon. J. T. Paul that a convincing qualification for a United Labor party is the possession of an up-to-date motor car and several big commercial interests. Doubtless Mr Moore will bo as sorrowful alter to-day as the rich young man who had great possessions. There is only another word to say: If the lion. J. T. Paul has no confidence in the Government, and if the Government are ca&t out as a weak-backed hack, he too should go with them voluntarily, for Mr Paul is now one of their possessions.
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Evening Star, Evening Star, Issue 15672, 10 December 1914
Evening Star Evening Star, Issue 15672, 10 December 1914
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