The Star MONDAY, OCT. 28, 1878.
Had Councillor Ick, as a candidate for •for the office of Mayor, presented himself in simple reliance upon his own claims to the ratepayers in the first instance, he would have received our support. He has, however, not done so. On the contrary, lie has chosen to follow a coarse as if the position of Mayor of this city wag in the gift of one of the Councillors, and that one certainly very far indeed from being the most respectable member of the body corporate. He has pursued a course derogatory to himself, injurious to Municipal government, and calculated to wound thd susceptibilities of all thinking and intelligent citizens. We ehnll proceed to state the grounds npon which this allegation is founded. The annual election of September last brought about, as every one knows, a great change in the personnel of the Council. Of the Municipal body it may be said that, with the exception of Councillors Ick, Wilson, and Gapes, not one of the members had any knowledge or experience of the manner of conducting public business. Councillor Gapes had been' absent from the Council for about a year, and appearing again as a new Councillor, may be excused for not at once putting himself forward in a positive attitude. But the present occupant of the Mayoral cha ; " and the public outside, had certainly some right to look to Counoilor Ick to use his position as an old member ?n support of propriety and order in the conduct of the Council's proceedings. For a reason, which is not difficult to divine, Councillor Ick has elected to remain silent in the face of gross violation of order and the most wanton waste of public time. No effort to check, nor word of rebuke nor protest has come from him. One of the new members has made himself unpleasantly conspicuous by his disorderly conduct and unseemly demeanor. It is a common trick of this Councillor to make long speeches sometimes on his feet, frequently from his ohair — no motion having been made, and with not the slightest intention of submitiug one—speeches which we shall be safe in describing as the most irrevelani and utter " bosh," crammed with ridiculous conceit and vain-gloriousness. Tet Councillor Ick has eat s'lent. No support has come from him to the chair in the efforts made to conduct the business with propriety. At the last meeting, it was near midnight before the proceedings were brought to a close, and even then, in consequence oE the egotistical twaddler to whom we have referred, consideration of at least one important motion had to be postponed. If Councillor Ick had possessed any desire to forward the business, he would from the beginning have assisted the Mayor to get through by adherence to the well defined rules of order, but as he did not, the fact must weigh against him in considering any of his claims to fill the
The annual election took place on the 12th September. Four days later, at the first Council meeting, Councillor Ick took an opportunity of apologising to Councillor Wilson for not having consulted him in the matter of moving the lamp-posfc near Cobb's, because it had been erected during that person's mayoralty. This toadying sycophancy was too much for the stomachs of Councillor Gapes and the Mayok. The former, in a manly manner denied that such " explanations " were in any way necessary, as the Works Committee had a perfect right to remove any public lamp they thought proper. This absurd apology was the initial movement in the subservient course which Councillor Ick has since pursued. Upon what ground can Councillor Ick explain his conduct ? The lamp in question was the property of the citizens, and, if situated in the way of traffic, the Council, as representing the citizens, had an indubitable right to right to remove it, without apology or explanation to any private individual. The case, however, suddenly assumed a new aspect under the light thrown by the election. Now, what was it that prompted Councillor Ick at the last Council meeting to deliver a fulsome panegyric upon the Councillor who bad just been distinguishing himself by recounting bis experiences in America, the Colonies, and other quarters of the globe, to the interruption of tbe municipal business. Councillor Ick was of opinion that the hearty thanks of the ratepayers were duo to the Sanitary Committee — Councillor Wilson is practically the Sanitary Committee — for some thing or another. It is singular certainly, that during the six or seven years Councillor Ick has been a member of the Council he has nrver been known to use such terms of extravagant compliment towards any Committee. We have had Finance, Water Supply, and a number of other Committees, some of which have served tho public well for years, yet no praise of their services came from the present candidate for the Mayoralty. It is generally understood that as Councillor Ick holds tbe opinion that all tho work of any consequence is done by tho Works' Committee (his oonneccion with which he loses no opportunity of reminding the ratepayers) no other Committee is entitled to any credit for what they may do. Whence then arises the occasion for this sudden burst of admiration for Councillor Wilson ? We are left to conolude that in the knowledge that Councillor Wilson poeaeßnes a working Committee and a^'p&rjhy amongst, the ratepayers ready to follow i^ B lead llea the true explanation of C6juncftU r Tck's conduct::'' " : ' ' "" "■' .'" : "' ' . '"'■ v.;:" :
r But aa if to set the^matter b^jona
dispute we have an article in last Thursday's Globe. We confess, that when we read the fulsome praises of Councillor Wilsok in this production, and contrasted them with an article in the same journal, no farther back than Sept. 13, we blushed for our contemporary. Nothing more thoroughly contemptible than this backsliding has ever appeared ia a public journal. This is how Councillor Wilson's support is to be. bought for Councillor Ick. " Councillor Wilson has already shown, by his assiduity and attention to business at the meetings of the Council, and the practical way in which he has brought forward, the many subjects initiated by him for the benefit of the city, that be has lost none of his interest in the work. When, therefore, as is most probably the case, ho will have in Councillor Ick a coadjutor aa Mayor, whose sentiments and opinions on municipal matters so entirely coincide and agree with his own, it is easy to imagiuo that the heighth of prosperity in city affairs, so far as Christchurch is concerned will have been reached." It will thus be seen that Councillor Ick has paid the ratepayers the compliment of treating the election as in the hands of such a person of Councillor Wilson, and that to secure that individual's support he has followed a course which, at all events, is open to suspicion as being neither independent nor honourable. We care not what the claims of any candidate may be on other grounds, we insist that straightforward, independent, and honourable conduct shall characterise our Mayors. If Councillor Ick has allowed himself to be exposed to suspicion, aud thereby lost the confidence of the intelligent and high minded, he has only himself to blame. We gladly acknowledge his. long f.ervi-e, his practical common sense, his knowledge and experience ; but there is something higher than even these. We cannot permit the ratepayers f o be ignored and insulted, or public decency to be trampled under- foot, by any attempt to ride into the Mayoral chair on the shoulders of any man, much less such a man as Councillor Wilson. We hope that some gentleman will present himself for the position who will rest upon his own merits, and by trusting entirely to the discrimination of the ratepayers, show that he deserves their confidence. To have to wait another year would be a very useful lesson to Councillor Ick. ' • ' • '
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Star, Star, Issue 3294, 28 October 1878
The Star MONDAY, OCT. 28, 1878. Star, Issue 3294, 28 October 1878
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