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The Star. WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 5, 1883.

With thb opinions ob Mb Fbbdbbioi Hobbs we have often had ocoasion to differ : and it is highly probable tbat if Mr Hobbs re-enters publio life the same thing may happen again. Nevertheless this gentleman possesses qualities wbioh we greatly admire, and whioh render him peculiarly fit for publio work. We are fully aware that there are come poople who regard Mr Hobbs aa narrowminded, bigoted, conceited, and vindictive. We have heard opinions of this sort expressed, and it is fair to stato them thus plainly. To these objections a better reply oan scarcely be imagined than the language of the Duke of Gloucester— slightly, very ■lightly, altered— in Biohard HI. :— "Beoause I oannot flatter and speak fair, Smile in men's faces, smooth, deceive and oog, Dook with Frenoh nods and apish courtesy, Must I be held a ranooroui enemy P " We admire the blunt, outspoken honesty of purpose whioh Mr Hobbs possesses in an eminent degree. Everybody, we imagine, will admit that ho forms his own opinions on men ' anal things, and that those opinions are fearlessly stated and acted upon when occasion serves. These qualities are very olearly indicated in the reply made by Mr Hobbs yesterday to the " deputation of influential ratepayers" who asked him to consent to ba a candidate to represent them in tho City Counoil. Never was deputation more opportune. Things are out of joint with the Oity Council, and havo been for a long period ; their discussions have been *' stale, flat and unprofitable ;" and the only thing they have succeeded in doing really well, is to bring down ridicule npon civio .government ob exemplified in the By-lawß of Che City of Christohuroh. It has beon stated Again Bnd again, and with perfect justice, that in no plaoe in the*'varsal world "can be found more intense apathy than exists here, {therefore, when the spasmodic wakings np do come, they constitute a refreshing change. Wo welcome the awakening in this instance most heartily: it comes none too soon. Mr Hobbs' reply to the deputation is simple enough, and " straight " enough. He Bays, if you eleot me, you must eleot me on my own ticket ; if you don't like my views, *' why, please don't eleot me." The platform on which Mr Hebha takes his stand is a compaot structure ; it has three planks and a hand-rail. In the first 'place, he purposes ts ■" have all the by-laws which aro obnoxious to the ratepayers repealed, and have those only re-made on a oommon sense basis wbioh are urgently required." So far as the repealing ia concerned, Mr Hobba has been spared a lot of trouble, since so many of the by-laws or ■clauses of them have— when anybody has had the pluck to test them— proved very rotten reeds, and have had the doom of ultra vires pronounced on them. And then Councillors whine out something to the effeot that the ratepayer; are ungrateful and morally bad, because they will not religiously write all theae by-laws in their hearts, and religiously observe them! Such bylaws! Enactments that are rendered null end void by their selfcontained contradictions. And in indicating the civio state of affairs, Mr Hobbs has placed his finger on the right ■pot. It iB not, wo take it, so muoh to the Town Clerk he oljeote, as to the system whioh the Town Clerk represents. Theoretically, the City Counoil has sound legal advice, well paid for. Fraotioally, it relies upon tbe triple support of itß Clerk, ito By-law Committee, and Ub solioitors, and gets . deposited in a humiliating position on the floor.. The flooring process h&s beoome dreadfully monotonous. TLis subject practically embodies tbo first and third planks of Mr Hobbs' platform j the middle one is the Water Supply question, whioh stands thus : —A nurater of far-seeing and enterprising oitizena offored to provide suoh a water supply as would advance the commercial position of Ohristchurch by at least fifty years. All they required was that certain right b should be given them—rights such as are enjoyed by the Gaß Company and the Drainage Board, and in a sonso by tho Tramway Oompany. Tha manufacturing facilities wero stubbornly rejeoted, and the Council has, for eome inscrutable reason, utterly refused to think about the matter any more. Bo muoh for progressive publio spirit under tho existing egime. We had almost forgotten the hand-rail, which, however, ia a rough finish rather than a support. Iho candidate simply says that in all matter;* pertaining to the well-being and the advarif.o-neiit of the City he will, to the best of his libiihy, do his utmost. Wo hopo that, if Mr Hobba is eleoted— as he onght to be — it will be by such a majority as will constitute an unmistakeable adoption of his proposed line of action. To specifio details he does not stand committed j nor would that be at all advisable. What of other candidates ? let us bave aa few mumohanoe elections as possible.

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https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/TS18830905.2.10

Bibliographic details

The Star. WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 5, 1883., Star, Issue 4789, 5 September 1883

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833

The Star. WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 5, 1883. Star, Issue 4789, 5 September 1883

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