MR BEDFORD'S INCONSISTENCY.
TO THE EDITOE. sir.—l regret I have no time to carry O'l a. correspondence on politics generally, and si- will restrict my reply to "Consistency'' to the ijuestion of my consistency ah'iic. As I said in my previous letter, there are three, reforms to which I have always attached paramount importance. They are Proportional Representai tort, taxation of unearned incomes, and the settlement of questions submitted to the people hv the majority vote. Mr Munro agrees with me on these matters : Mr Kt.-itUr.tTt disagrees with me. "Consistency '' considers that I am inconsistent, in support in,J- ,\!r Munro under-such conditions. "What kind of consistency is it which requires me. to vote for the, man I disagree with and vote against the man I agree with? If Sir Joseph Ward were standing against Mr Statham, and pledged himself to the reforms I lay such stress on, I. should certainly support him. I have not and never had any personal animosities in politics. My opposition to Sir Joseph Ward last, election was not grounded in any personal dislike of him, but, as I fully explained at the time, in my disapproval of his policy. If I had believed in his policy I should not hava opposed him. My relations to any politician will change with his policy. If Mr Munro were to stand next. General Election on a platform of Syndicalism, 1 should not, consider myself inconsistent in opposing him because ] supported linn at last General Election. 1 cannot say whom I shall be supporting in the future. Is may be. Mr Massey. it may be Sir Joseph Ward, it may be a Labor leader ; it depends entirely on their relation to thu political principles 1 hold. At present I am a member of the Labor party—but why'' Only because I believe its platform to 'be sounder, from the standpoint of economic principle than any other. If tho Labor patty moves away from this platform 1 shall not consider that, consistenry obliges me to follow it. Party politka would lct-e many of its worst evils if men would consider' the fortune of measures more and the fort line of party leaders less. There aie, politicians in the Oovernment party and ."politicians' in the Opposition party whose politics, as far as I cart gather, are •exactly the same. Party bitterness is always accentuated when_ it; rest on mere persona! antipathy. But. for this bitterness ire should nave had a coalition Government now. There ought not to have been a General Election at all last, year, and after it had resulted in a, •'draw." Buth leaders should have come, together with a, view to some arrangement while the war lusted. The. spirit of party is becoming a political pestilence. But> for it there would have been 1:0 by-elee tion in Dunedin Central. The Governor-ir.-Council—that is, iiie. (Jovernment—had the power to brush aside the technicalities tliat dei-eaxc-.} Sir Munro- a-r-o -L«» many of us who put party first- and countrv and priiuipies second. .Since vhere is to* be another election. T, for one. am. going to support the man whose pokey is closest to my or, i:. By the way, my mystification "as to «hat "Consistency'' means by consistency is increased by his inference to my attit-ude on rating on unimproved values. I don't remember, at any time, wavering in rny advocacy of this reform which he says I have abandoned.— I am. etc.. If. I). BrnronD. January 22. [Correspondence dosed.—Ed. E.S.]
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MR BEDFORD'S INCONSISTENCY., Evening Star, Issue 15708, 23 January 1915