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News and Notes., Southern Cross, Volume 15, Issue 14, 20 July 1907
News and Notes.
Exit colony : enter dominion. By 50 votes to 15 the House of Representatives have endorsed the new title for Now Zealand, and in due course His Majesty the King will graciously assent to the change. '“To change the name and not the letter,” runs the old proverb, “is to marry for worse and not for bettor.” In this case we have changed the letter as well as the name, so may hope for the best. 4" 4 4 Are Arbitration laws and high wages all that they are cmcked up to bo ? Some persons think not — amamong them Mr John McQueen, who represented Southland at the late Fanners:. Union Conference in Wellington. “Sooner or later this arbitration lousiness will break down, and the sooner the better,” said he, adding that the country could not long stand the rate at which wages were going up throughout the colony. With statement of a farmer’s views comes the intimation that the price of timber has advanced ; that rates are to be increased in the coastal shipping - trade ; and that bootmakers are combining to raise prices. From a worker’s point of view there's something rotten in the State of Denmark, or rather the colony—beg pardon, Dominion —of New Zealand, for if he secures an advance in wages a still bigger advance is immediately made in the cost of some household necessity. But then, New Zealand is practically free from strikes, and people mustn’t grumble if they have to pay for the privilege. 4 4 4 4 A section of the people of California have been worked up to a fever itch by the discovery that a Japauso officer at San Diegx) and a Japanese servant at Rosecrans have been sketching the fortifications, and obtaining other information likely to be of value in the event of war between Japan and the States. The American fleet was lately ordered to patrol the Pacific, while Japan has given larg-o orders for armaments to Germany. Japan wants the Philippines badly, and she also wants to get even with California for giving her people the cold shoulder educationally and commercially, and it is hard to say how matters will end. General Kuroki, who lately visited
America, gave great satisfaction by remarking—‘"l love you Americans because you, like the Japanese, are a nation of hustlers.” But when hustler meets hustler there is apt to be trouble. Let us hope that in this case it will lie averted. The gravity of the situation is that Britain, as the ally of Japan, might he involved in hostilities with the States. John Bull and Cousin Jonathan at war ! Its unthinkable. 4 4 4 4 Just at the moment, when thousands of the native population of India are chafing under British rule, and when Europeans have been compelled in some cases to go armed, is the time chosen by Air Keir Flardie, the head of the Independent Labour Party-, to declare that during his tour abroad ho intended to tell the Hindoos that the Socialists are anxious that justice be done them, and that the working classes desire home rule for India. “Queer” liardie ho used to lie called on account of his unconventional style of attire, and equally queer indeed must be his sense of the fitness of things possessed by this in many- respects line man to talk as he is reported to have talked at a time when a reckless word may fan discontent into rebellion. As a writer in a Home paper aptly puts it—“ The men who use their casual position in the House of Commons to speak in favour of rebellion play clumsily with edged tools. You might as well arm monkeys with revolvers, or supply every nursery in the kingdom with dynamite, as invest with authority persons who feel neither the restraint of honour nor the impulse of patriotism.’ ’ 4 4 ■4’" 4 Another attempt is to be made to reach the North Pole. Air Wellman, an American journalist, is to leave Norway to-clay, per air-ship, for the Arctic regions. His craft, which h a .s been named “America,” is the largest, with one exception, ever built, and it is expected that the journey to the Pole will he made in from ten to twenty days. “It is our intention,” states Air Wellman, “during our vo.vage to the Polo to be always in contact with the earth by means of a guide-rope. We shall never ascend more than 300 to 500 feet, and our guide-rope will trail over the surface of the earth. Instead of employing a steel line, we have made what I may call a leather serpent, 15 inches in diameter and 130 feet long, and weighing about 1,400 lbs. This is packed full of reserve food, weighing 1,200 lbs, and is suspended from the airship by means of a steel rope.,” ■4* 4 4 4 The lion. Hall-. Tones has left the colony on a health-recruiting tour, taking with him the good wishes of his 'colleagues in the Ministry, and of everyone outside its ranks who appreciates good work done for the State. According to the Vanguard, the organ of the Temperance Party, “he has not always received the credit he 'deserves for the share he has borne in the burden of advancing the cause of reform. He is not a reformer of the noisy, shouting order : but In quieter ways he has rendered the cause invaluable aid. It is a splendid tribute to his worth that he has steadily grown in the estimation of all who have known him, and he gave promise that in relation to public service, 'the best was yet to be.’ The sympathies Q f the whole band of Temperance workers go out to him in his illness that for a time has compelled him to lay aside all active work.” 4- 4 4 4While the Japanese are a source of disquiet to the United States, they are proving industrial friends in need to Canada, which is utilising them in the construction of the Grand Pacific Trunk line. A contingent of 3000 of the “little brown men” has been called into requisition, and more will
probably follow. It is estimated by a Tillies correspondent that Oanada will build 10,000 miles ol railway in the next five years, and these with accessory buildings and ordinary stocks- will cost about £60,000,000. At the first it might be thought that Canada, with its vast territories awaiting settlement and its equally vast scheme of public works, will be just the country for working men. But there are always two sides to a story, and the Dominion is no exception. 'Writing to a friend in Wanganui, an cx-New Zealander remarks —“There are a great number of disappointed settlers in the Dominion, and, in spite of the shiploads of immigrants constantly arriving, there is always a more or less steady] outward stream of those whose object is to seek pastures new. Tf on-, ly people knew what they had to face,; ruos a Passage in the- letter, ‘they would never come to Canada.' You can make money here, but the privations are dreadful, and in consequence Canada is becoming cleaned out.’ ” Britain recently found it' necessary to discharge some thousands of the men employed at the Woolwich arsenal, and, if the London Mail be correct, Germany has been quick to take advantage of the situation. 'According to that journal, over 2000 men, mostly highly skilled, have been transplanted to different German arsenals and workshops. Wages have been no object. One workman had arranged to pay as much as £lO per week to torpedo workmen, and £6 and £8 per week - were frequently paid. One man skilled in engineering and making pumps, has been secured at a salary of £7 10s a week. The German workshops were full of orders from Norway, Denmark, Russia, Turkey, and even from Britain. As Dr. Fitzgerald stated at Kaibangata recently, bravery is found in other fields than those of battle, his remarks referring to the disaster at the Nightcaps mine, when men risked their lives to save, their comrades. He is not .singular in his opinion, for King Kdwar-d announced the _ early establishment of a decoration bearing his name for miners and quarrymen who voluntarily endanger Gtheir own lives to rescue others. Had the new order of things been in force now we are certain the splendid work done at the Nightcaps colliery would have received due recognition.
News and Notes., Southern Cross, Volume 15, Issue 14, 20 July 1907
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