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THE BATTLE OF THE BALLOTS

POLITICAL PELLETS FOR PERPLEXED PLUGS

Candidate, Tlieir Cadde, Tfeeir Claims and Their dances

Labor and its Laorels, Liberalism aad it* Lore, Reform a&d

its Rotten Record

While the virtuous "Reformers" are endeavoring to delude people all over the country into tho belief that the only way to prevent the "Bolshevist" section from holding the balance of power is to elect Tory baton-wielders, it is significant that no Massey candidate lias, so far, presented himself l'jj^kny of the Christchurch seats. One vvouT^cl naturally suppose that, if Mas-s-cyism was the only panacea for the sickness of this very sick Dominion, representatives bearing the banner of ]'{ill would come amongst us to preach baton-weilding and to sing the praises i of Bill, the dope doctor. Can anyone te.'l us why BUI and Ms gang are'grivin;-- the Holy City the go-by? « c * Tho Laborist, "Jamie"' McCombs, is up against two liberal candidates and one Reform candidate.. He, no doubt, ■will get a big- propoi'tion of the votes m Lyttelton itself, and m those districts contiguous to the city. Mr. W. T. Lester, a well-known Lyttelton resident, who has for a number, of . years figured m the domestic politicsof the port, will also garner a heavy crop of votes m his- home town. Mr. Ell, M.P., will not have any hope of election, but is bound to capture a few votes throughout the electorate, particularly m those localities which have benefited by his roading of the hills. Thus, the gr«.it majority vote will be split up into three sections. Down the Peninsula, Mr. McArtney, the - MasBey man, who Is a decent sort of chap, will get almost a block vote. # # * A position very similar to that m Lyttelton has arisen m Temnka, where Mr. C. J. Talbot, m a straight-out contost, would romp home. Here, we find the Massey representative opposed, not only by Mr. Talbot, but a Lib-Lab, Mr. F. I-I. Buckley, and an Independent Labor (not attached to the official Labor Party), m the person of the Mayor of Temuka, Mr. T. Gunnion. It is foretold by those who have an intimate acquaintance with both the canilidaten and the different parts of the jlectorate, that, if all. three go to the poll, the seat is a gift for the Massey[te, Mr. T. D. Burnett, who is, by oc- . cupation, a big runholder m the Mt. Cook district. How the Reformers must be praying for a strong resolution m Messrs. Buckley and Gunnion. # * * Davie Buddo is going to .have a stiff fight with Davie Jones, erstwhile Massey organiser and at present President of the North Canterbury Farmers 1 Union, for the retention of the Kaiapoi seat. His anxiety is m no wise relieved by the fact that Labor man, C. M. Williams, will help Jones along by splitting the vote. Well might the "Reformers" fervently breathe: "God bless Williams!" *> • * It was, of course, impossible for our old pal "Ricketty" to abstain from personalities m the course of his endeavors to persuade the electors of Avon that he was the chosen of Heaven. Wlhen his meeting was disturbed by a few irresponsibles. he, as anyone who knows him expected he would, insinuated that the disturbance was inspired by his opponent. Of course, those who know Dan Sullivan saw at once that this unjust imputation was only the old campaigner's dodge of bringing discredit upon one of the cleanest, fairest, straight?st and most decent chaps that the City has produced. Sullivan wasted good money and good time m giving the insinuation a vehement newspaper and platform denial, but he might have saveo'. himself the trouble, as nobody was likely to be deluded by a palpable electioneering dodge. #' # * Can't some of the Labor candidates get away from reiterating the alleged "smart" sayings of certain soap-box propagandists? F. P. Brady seems to have got a few of these off "pat," and is rolling them out good-oh at his meetings. The other night at Wanganui East he told the workers m his audience that, If the Almighty Intended you working men to crawl to your bosses he would have given you legs, on your chest. Time was when balderdash like thai might have raised a laugh among the workers, but it is to be hoped that foi the sake of the latter, such timt is long since past, never to return. Beaides, the idea is ridiculous. Onlj those who have no legs or legs toe weak to support their bodies, crawl Then there's the insinuation behind the statement that all the workers, oi the majority of the workers m Rangitikei electorate are "crawlers." Is thi; the sort of language to use to mer whose votes one is soliciting for Labor And if it is true what's the use o: running a Labor candidate? Th< statement reminds the writer of one( hearing a flamboyant speaker use tin same phrase. "Maybe, Felix, ye hav< legs on yer own chist," shouted a littli Irishman from the crowd. 'What.' 1 cried the speaker, as he tore open liii ahirt and singlet, "legs on my chest never! Look ye there, can ye see any? -Naw, Felix, I can't," said the littl Irishman, who seemed, to know th speaker, "but tell me, forts as bare a the lifC o' mo nan', did ye rub all th hair affa yer chest widyer crawlin' ii the past?" * * * Mr. Harry Atmore, ex-M.P. foi Nelson, seems to be putting everj ounce into the fight to regair • his old seat m the House by oustin; T. A. ll. Field. So far as platforr ability goes, Harry has a decided ad vantage over his opponent, who is no only a poor speaker, but is possess^ of a weak voice, not only on the plat form, but off. Harry has a clear an forceful delivery, a fairly comprehen .'■.ive grip of economics, m at least s far as the land question is concerned He is full of energy and having thorough knowledge of local require ments, as well as a good understand ing of a comprehensive national pol icy, it ought to_bo m the interests c every democratic elector m Nelson t .<:pe that Harry does the "come-back with a thumping majority. When las m the House he came speedily to th front, and was looked upon as or vho would quickly gain ministeri; rank. In the five years of enforce rest, Mr. Atmore has not been idle, f was shown by the confidence and a: eurance with which ho was able I <£3SS with tVie various political pom

as he dwelt upon them m his opening speech. A few more speeches on similar lines would not only secure a victory for Atmore, but would so enlighten the electors of Nelson as to the evils of Masseyism and all that it stands for that they' would never forgive themselves for having voted for Massey at last election, and would ' take good care that it would never happen again. c # • As Mr. Sykes, the sitting member for Masterton, had announced himself as an Independent, "Truth" was surprised to notice that he had agreed to submit to a committee of Reformers whether he or the Reform candidate should withdraw from the contest, and thus save the seat for Reform. But supposing the committee had suggested the withdrawal of the announced Reform candidate, how would that have "saved the seat for Reform," if Mr. Sykes was a genuine Independent? And had Mr. Sykes been a genuine Independent, would a committee consisting of Reformers have suggested the withdrawal of the Reform candidate m his favor? All this goes to show that many Masseyites are very shaky on their chances, and are taking to the Independent stunt m order to rope m the votes of the unwary, and thus save their seats. If successful, they would immediately exercise their independent judgment as to which side of the House they would sit on. and emphasise their independence by sitting with Big Bill as of old. It seems that Sir Walter Buchanan practically told the announced Reform candidate to get out of the contest and leave the field clear for Mr. Sykes. This blew the gaff on Sykes's alleged independence, and incidentally proved that tho other man was the real independent for he refused to obey tho bidding of the party head pea iv the Wairarapa. He agreed to withdraw if his own committee agreed to such a course m favor of Syltes. but the committee didn't, so Mr. Matheson stands as the Reform candidate. Now we are m for a peculiar development. Election day is likely to see the elite of the Reform Party m the Masterton constituency rally to the polling booths to vote for the alleged "Independent," while the rag, tag and bobtail of Masseydom will be left to support the Reform candidate. Alick McLeod is the Labor candidate for Masterton, and he ought to be able to make good use of the position that has arisen. Alick has a good record as a member of the City Council; he is also known as a straight and loyal unionist, with a good grip of economics, and would make an excellent member. ♦ • • The chief characteristic of political candidates is their optimism. Frnstns, m Wellington North the Liberal candidate says he will change his name on election day from Oakley Browne to O.K. Browne. The .Labor candidate on the other hand says that already he "can Read his title clear" to a seat In th« House. Of course, tho Reformers declare that In Wellington North no party but Reform can get a Luke m. • • • The wahine scribe on the Christchurch "Specked-tater" is more emphatic m her likes and dislikes than she is logical m her arguments. She bangs into Jamie Munro, Labor candidate for Dunedin Central, for saying that by-and-by New Zealand will yet be proud of Mr. Semple, likewise of Mr. Holland, and a good many other people who have been m gaol. After declaring that election day will relegate these people and other shirk- ; ers to their proper place, at the bottom of the polls with their deposits lost, so-to-speak, this wild womanwriter walls: New Zealand will never be proud of these shirkers, and they will never be forgotten — they are too dangerous for that. Another illustration of not knowing when on© has said enough. Had she stopped at "forgotten," or merely added "nor forgiven," the paragraph might have passed without cavil. But m saying "they are too dangerous for that," she betrays her want of faith m i her own prophesy that Labor will bej snowed under at the election, for how could a handful of men with no political following that counted be "dangerous"? • • • Mr. Bill Massey 'has now apparently been deserted by every parliamentary candidate m Dunedin. As a result of Labor's solidity and energetic campaigning m this quarter, there has been a re-shuffling of • methods m the one quarter where it was anticipated Reform could put forth an official supporter. But the very evident slump m Masseyism induced the supporters of Mr. Downie Stewart and the candidate himself that it would be running tremendous risks to come forth as Reform's official representative. Mr. Stewart could not go over too hard, and being always anti- Labor, he could only come forth like Messrs. Kellett and Siafham as an "Independent." In a no-confidence motion we observe, however, that Mr. Stewart would uphold Massey. Nevertheless, m a dour district like Dunedin, it augurs something unusual when Mr. Massey cannot secure the public support of one candidate. • • • Sir Joseph Ward is represented m the arena by two candidates, Mr. T. K. Sldey (South Dunedin), and Lieut.Col. Colquhoun (Chalmers). In the Chalmers electorate -the fig-ht is a. three-cornered one; Mr. J. M. Dickson carries the black flag of Reform, and Mr. J. Gilchrist holds aloft the standard of Labor. Owing to the patent fact that the democratic vote m this quarter is split up between Col. Colquhoun and Mr. Gilchrist, it is likely that Dlckson will slip m. • * * Mr. Ned Kellett, the' Independent candidate for Dunedin North, is not being taken seriously. « * # At Riverton, recently, Mr. Bill Massey quoted Mr. Walker, the Labor member for Dunedin North, as saying that "when Labor formed itself into a distinct party it would be ready to cooperato with Liberalism." Bill considered that the greatest "give away" he had seen for many a day. The ■s greatest "give aww I" Most of the

Labor candidates have said the same ; thing. H. E. Holland expressed Labor's tactics (and certainly would be whether Labor desired it or not); m the circumstances where a no-confidence motion arose, Labor would vote with Liberal m outing Mr. Massey. Yet, | Mr. Bill Massey never heard of this ! general "secret" until Mr. Yfalker poured it into his ears from a Dun- J edin platform. i * * • < Bill Massey avoided Dunedln as a i plague spot. Repudiated by everyone 1 m the dour city, save for a casual ■ j "lick" from the adroit tongue of Mr. j Downie Stewart, Mr. Massey's rapid J ■ tour of the extreme south has been ■ ; more m the nature of lightning fare- , . well functions. It was strongly ru- j ( mored m "Reform" circles that Bill ] would take the stump m Duhedin, but I j the defection of Mr. Downie Stewart, j ; "Reform's" last straw m Duriedin, fill- j ; ed Bill with disgust, and he shook the j dust of the city from the soles of his ; , broad feet. He has no reason "to , stump"- it here, not having one official •: representative to carry his black flag, j Mr. Downie Stewart's flag, is like, Joseph's coat, it is made up of every ; color m the rainbow. #■•■•• ; Mr.. T. K. Sidey continues to do well ■ m South Dunedin; so also does Mr. i , J. T. Paul. Their respective chances ; estimated from their public meetings ; would prompt a casual onlooker to . i prophecy a dead-heat at the polls ! i ! But as there cannot be any likelihood • ( i of this, the unusual activity, prepared- • , ' ness and general tone of the workers , : m the electorate incline one to back Mr. Paul for a win — a safe but narrow | one. Mr. Black, the . Balkan gentleman, so sincerely loyalist and British, does not count. Kftjfidn't risk nomination. **** ••».;•■• • Big Bill Massey declared the ether day: "So long as I am m office, I intend to dictate the legislation that shall be brought down." Say, is the | politician to be the master of the ! people who made him, and who payj him handsomely for allowing himself to be made? ij * * "After all it is the floaters m every constituency that decide the verdict at the polls. Set yourselves out to win J the moderates, the undeciJeds, the, floaters, and Reform will go Oficic with ; a good working majority." lUumina- j ting and instructive par by Tory. scribe. In America the floater is called , the "mugwump." Sing a song of voters, Pockets full of "dough"; Umpteen-umpteen mugwumps Their own minds scarcely know. When the votes are counted, See the bosses grin; While on mugwumps mounted, We are sure to win. * * * While "Truth" hopes to see all pre- j sent sane Labor members returned as well as several of the more reliable Labor candidates seeking.. election, it regrets that the paucity of znateriai offering has led to the selection of certain men as Labor candidates whose success would be the very worst thing that could happen Labor. The Rev. J. K. Archer, who is opposing ..he Hon. J. A. Hanan, for Invercargill, is one of that ilk. Imagine a champion of Labor's cause who, when his comrades are fighting for their political lives,' says from the .- public platform, m an effort to placate opposition to himself . personally, "The Labor Party is not; out to defend such men as Sernple and ; Holland, and its principles are 'riot to be identified ' with the utterances of; these men." Well might the. leader:-:' of Labor exclaim, "Save us from cur, friends." 1 But really such nien are 'not j ' friends. They are merely scheming; politicians out to make 'use of 'he La- ' bor Party to carry thorn to public pre- ;

ferment, because they think that the old gang: of politicians is so discredited that Labor is goin^ forw.iVci on a high wave of success. And buck a 'cute clerical cove for watching out for all the chances going 1 to better "number one"! j • • • Mr. John Edie, who is. contesting the 1 Bruce seat against Sir James Allen, m . the Liberal interest, appears before the electors as one who has lived m their midst for over 50 years. He entered the Survey Department as a cadet, and is at present county engineer for Maniototo. In addition, he i 3 a farmer ' and the Mayor of the borough of Law- i rence. Sir James is certainly "up against it" this time, as Mr. Edie is one of the best known and most popular men m the electorate. "Make no mistake about it," said Mr. Edie, speaking at Kaitangata: "I am out to beat Sir James Allen, and more than that I believe I am going to do it." Faith : can move mountains, and is an abso- ■ lute essential toward success m any ; enterprise. It is to be hoped that the faith of Mr. Edie, supplemented with the confidence of the electors of Bruce,, will succeed m removing the . ugly tumor of Alienism from the body , politic of New Zealand. No victory m : the Dominion would be more beneficial j or popular than the triumph of Mr. Edie m Bruce. : # ♦ # Andy Walker is securing good meet- | ! ings at Dunedin North. His chances ! are generally considered as good, ; ! especially as Ned Kellctt has nothing ! j more sensational or complimentary to \ boast about than his service as mem- j ber of the Otago Military Service Board. • • • ! In contests where candidates are de- j termined on senseless vote-splitting. | Democrats should remember to exer- i else their own commonsense by refus- i ing to waste their votes on a dead j donkey. They should back the Demo- i i cratic candidate — be he Labor or Lib- ! ! eral— who has the best chance of j } winning. The people must consider the Democratic cause — not the ambitious candidate — m such cases. • * * Jack Read, the Labor candidate for Wellington North, makes a strong | point of the fact that Labor is so ' much m earnest about democratic re- j ■ presentation that it has a plank m: ; its platform which pledges the party ! to grant full political rights to all civil | ! servants. So far as proving that La- j bor is the most democratic party the point is all right, but it doesn't seem to "Truth" that the civil servants are I very anxious about their political rights, but that they are more con- j | cerned about keeping their "cushy" i jobs. As a matter of fact every citizen has full political rights, and only those who by some illegal act have lost their citizen status have no political rights. True, certain ' by-laws of the civil service say that . civil servants must not do so-and-so, but statute law is greater than the bylaws of any department of 'company, or combine, and no by-law can abrogate Statute law. This h&.s been admitted m Britain and many public servants are members of political bod- ; ies and representatives on local gov- j eminent councils and boards, v-hile ; civil servants again and again have been candidates for Parliament. When , will some of our "fmivel servants" have the pluck to come out and hack , up the Labor Party's demand oy mak- \ ing a test case of the question? j '•■'■••'' «" # ■■ ■ "Jimmy" Gun'son is fighting his elec- I tion for the new electorate of Roskill, j j from America! Rumor has it that our j j absentee Mayor has been denied aj • passage by a speculating' rjng m! • America. The ring' it re alleged to have < ; cornered all the berths on the sou : i tramps for some months ahead, find 1 travellers have to consult the rlns to '

secure a berth at a special figure. Latest reports have it that Mayor J. PI. Gunson will arrive m Auckland on the eve of the election, December IC. As it is an energetic band of workers are doing their best to boost the stock of the Mayor of Auckland. • # * 1 The Maaaey Party is perturbed. It J doesn't say so m so many words, but anyone can read it between the lines of much that is appearing m the Tory press these days. Frnstns, referring to the contest at Pahiatua, the "Dominion" says "Mr. A. McNicol appears to be gaining ground every clay." If that i is so, then there will not be a sing : -<- tvote left for the Liberal and Labor men to half between tnem by Wednesday next. Pahiatua has been a Tory seat since 1911, so if Mr. McNicol finds it necessary to gain ground, the Tory cause must have been sorely discredit- ; ed m that district during the "long parliament." The truth is that there ; is every likelihood of Pahiatua return- ', ing its old member, Mr. R. B. Ross, who represented the seat from 1905 to 1911. Indeed, Pahiatua, from its formation as a parliamentary constitu- : ency m 1896 had been Liberal up to i 1911, with the exception of the sixi teen months W. H. Hawkins sat (Juiy ■ 28, 1904, to November, 1905) as an Oppositionist. Hawkins, however, was, and probably is to-day, a Moderate Liberal, but during the time he i was m the House he was estranged i from the Liberal Party over the ! Liquor question. Pahiatua was set- , tied by workers who took advantage :of Sir John MacKenzie's land policy, and there is still a strong Radical backbone to the place. Ross ought to win, despite the ground gained "every j day" by his opponent McNicol. • ■ • • ! McCallum, sitting member for Waii rau, is up against something solid m IJ. J. Corry. The others hardly count. I * • • i Harry Atmore is the only one who ; will give Field trouble at Nelson, and, jif successful meetings are any criterion, Harry will be It on December 17. • * # In the Motueka district P. B. Lomax will certainly poll well, and the sitting member, Hudson, will have to ' shake things up if he wants to top the | Poll. I • • • I Harry Holland is having: a rooky ! time m the Buller, and O'Brien should ! romp home. Harry was so hard •pushed' in at least one town that he had to bring an outsider m as chairman — then there was the bump he got j at Murchison. • * • J ln the Westland electorate, although the other lO'Brien has a fair follow- ' ing, Tom Seddon seems to be safe , enough. • * w One safe seat for Liberalism is Napier. Vigor Brown is a faithful Parliamentarian, a true Liberal, and a staunch friend of the workers. Napier is a constituency where a vote for Labor is equal to a vote for Reform. A nice pickle Labor is making of matters. ; • * * I Let every Liberal and Labor voter ■ m Taranaki rally to the poll m support of Syd. Smith. Sydney Smith, during last century, became an honored name m the Old Dart. Taranaki's \ representative intends to make the name worthy of his forebears, by his work for Labor m New Zealand "parj liament during this. Rally round and ; snow under the Tory would-)>e M.P i * * •# j The Hawke's Bay seat, which Sir j Jock Findluy deserted when it came ; to the big fight, is likely to be given | as a gift to the Tories on Wednesday. ' In any case, It is a hard seat to win ! for a progressive, and took Sir John

Findlay, a fluent speaker, and exCabinet Minister, and an erudite scholar all his time to hold. What then are the chances of either the Labor or Liberal candidate now opposed to such a strong local man as Hugh M. Campbell? It is farcical to put up mediocre men against such champions of Masseyism, but to run two pigmies is surely the last word m tactical imbecility. * * # Now you farmer-workers and work-ing-farmers m the Oroua, be true to yourselves by voting: the Labor ticket on Wednesday next. Don't allow the Masseyites to split your votes. Ernest is m earnest. He is one of yourselves, and your interests are his interests. * # # The "Black" man hadn't the courage to risk his deposit by fulfilling his pledge to get himself nominated against the Hon. J. T. Paul for Dunedin South. Praps it was because there was no risk, but a sure gift to the Guv'mint that Negroski got out from under. Now the light is between Sidey and Paul there can be only one choice for Labor. It must give a block vote for J.T.P. on Wednesday. "Truth" is sorry for; SWVv. but he should not have allowed himself to be persuaded to stand ag'uin,- when he had an-

nounced his retirement from politics, at the close of last session. It would have been much better to have retired gracefully, than to have forced upon Labor the unpleasant job (unpleasant m his case) of pushing him out. • * * The "Dominion," of Wellington, and the "Chronic- ill" of Wanganui, are continually harping on the string that Mr. Veitch, M.P., first entered the House pledged to vote against the Ward administration, and that he actually kept his pledge, a most surprising thing, apparently, m a politician. Then he supported the McKenzie Government, and now, shrieks the Tory rags, "he is supporting Sir Joseph Ward!" And why not? When Veitch and other Labor men voted the Liberals out of office, it was felt that the Liberal Party needed something of a shock, to rouse it out of its marktime attitude. The lesson was administered by Labor outing them from office. Unfortunately, m order to apply the lesson it was necessary to give the Tories the opportunity of taking office. They did so, and what is more, held on to it tenaciously. Then Labor alao got a, lens->n. It learned that Massayism was so antagonistic to La* bor that It actually put back the cha-

riot of progress.. Labor now sees that it would have been better if the mark time Liberalism had been preferred, bad as it was, to the reactionary Tory. Now, however, Liberalism, having learned its lesson, is awake, and is determined, given the opportunity, to emulate its past m real progressive work. It is yet to be seen whether Labor also has learned its lesson, and has profittcd thereby. All that Mr. Veitch's action shows is that he, for one, lias learned the lesson, His former pledge, which he faithfully kept, wns the pledge of an inexperienced man. He has had eight years' experience, and m the light of that experience he had decided to give a general support to Sir Joseph Ward as against Mr. Massey. In there anything- dishonorable m that? The Wellingtor. "Daily Drizzle" knows that there is not.

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THE BATTLE OF THE BALLOTS, NZ Truth, Issue 756, 13 December 1919

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THE BATTLE OF THE BALLOTS NZ Truth, Issue 756, 13 December 1919

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