The Star. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 1883.
WHO IB TO BB THB NEXT MAYOR of . hristohurch; or, rather, whioh of tho two oandidates ii to bo chosen, Councillor Ajers or •x-Gounciilor Hulbarl ? Wo assume that the oitiiens, d.-npitc the extraordinary apathy re» girding mnUera Municipal with whioh they are credited, or debited, rather— Bnd regndaffairs of wider importance also — do not desire that fcbe Qhriatohuroh Mayoral election should degenerate into a modernised vernion of the famouo Girrat onteste, which made "Mervii* England" merrier ;ot in the seventeen- fifties, and ensured rich harvests for the pablioens of Wandswortb.. The queerest: and moßfc facetious of candidates were brought from all quarter*, and all the paraphtrniilid of a serious election worn parodied in tbis mook ono. For the nonce, the local cobbler beoame Lord Lapstone, the pari?h grave-digger blossomed into Lord Twankum, and the lady eleeton wore admonished to attend "full dreescc 7 , and clem about the heels." We at any rats perpetuate some of the G-arrat eleotion follies : caricatures »re issued, and lief are told by rival touts, just as froely now M ia the day* when Foote reigned at the Haymarket, liar are we altogether so much concerned as wo ought to bo, in the choice of men suited for the office of Chief Magistrate of an important city ; the real value of the position is not recognised, and heuoe it has oome to psf a that; in the present elaotion we have but tiro candidates, neither of whom can be truthfully spoken of as a really suitable Major. A choice, however, has to be made : which shall it be ? ° The successful candidate will cot ccoupy an altogether enviable position, since it will be extremely difficult— if. not altogether impossible— for him to follow in the lines of his predecessor. Despite his disadvantages, Mayor BuddenMau has fully upheld the dignity of hia office, and fittingly discharged the e&lailed social responsibilities. Despite a lack of that " presence " whioh has no small valve on occasions of civio ceremonial, Mr Budoenklau has never failed to create a favourable impreesion ; despite hia somewhat imperfect knowlodge of cur language, his speeches hava aa a rule been good, thoroughly good, pithy, and to the purpose. He has proved himself capable of forming opinions for him< elf, and«of supportieg hia convictions fearlessly. He huß been a generous and courteous host, and aa indofaligabld Obief Exeoutivo Officer of the City Council, attending during oertain hours daily at the Council's offices for the prompt discharge of his mayoral duties. At the same time, Mr Buddenklau has had special advantages— the advantages of leisure and means. Neither of his proposed auoeeißors can be ezpeoted to do aa he haß done. They bra men who have their own businesses to attend to— men who must keep their shops if they themselves are to be kept. "Whioh shall it be ? The citizens are very xnuoh in the position of the boy at tho peeDshow, who wanted to know whiuh wu» Weilington and whioh was Napoleon. They have to pay then* rates and take their ohoice. Ihe olaimß of each candidate are based upon services rendered as members of the City Council ; and if this basis is to be taken wholly and solely, then Councillor Ayers is the man; he is the senior Councillor, and his term of service has been an unbroken one. Bob what is the real value of suoh a claim, savo and except the knowledge it may give of the manner of conducting- oivio business ? Suppose a man is put into the Council of tho sort characterised by West of England folk a» " Do- nothing, rue-nothing, dead-alive Damps " ? Does a man who keeps his mouth as fa" ck'?ed aB r clam, become fitted for the ciKot- if Major because he has been a oivio liioli fish ? We think not. Again, suppose the Councillor to have been a thorough trimmer, a man who never ventured an opinion unless quite sure that his nose sniffed the wind of public favour, and who when in doubt on the point walked out of the Council Chamber rather than commit himself to bis own shivering judgment and to possible adverse comment — does suoh a man beoome, because of long tenure of office, qualified for the Mayoral position ? Again we think not : and Councillor Ayers seems to us to have tho veering tinge plainly visible in his moral composition. Another claim put forward on his bahalf in his extreme affability. We admit that it is extreme : We are unconsciously reminded of that some-lime French institution, the Maire dv Palais, whom the Stratford -atte-Bov Parisian styles a Majordummy. Heaven preserve us from a Malvolio for a Mayo/ ! We should have him wreathod La smiles for a brief period, and then, perhaps, we should experience the shook of seeing him going about with straws in his hair. We have not touched upon comments made by tho man in the street as to Councillor Ayers' mode of conducting bis own business : that— for good or ill— is a matter between him and his clientSle. Bx-Oounoillor Hulbert also has his faults. A maanor that has at times seemed overbearing, and, on occasion, brusque to the extreme of rudeness : a pettishness that led him to resign from the Council when bis purpose could not be gained. As a member of the Civio body Mr Hulbert made mistakes : his greatest mistake was his last— that of throw* ing up the cards with almost boyish impetuosity when he saw himself a temporary loser. For all that, we believe Mr Hulbert's faults have been rather of the head than of tho heart. We believe that he will have profited by the experiences of the past, and will have beoome ac a metal refined, by the sharp oritioi-ma to whioh he Las been subjected. We know that he has opinions of his own, and that he is fearlessly outspoken concerning
them, and we also know that if his bearing is sometimes trusque, it is not because he is all ungracious. Personally, we know no more; of Mr Hulbert than of his opponent ; but we judge that ia any little feuds he may have he is an open enemy, and tuat bis friendships are warm-hearted. In brief, we are foroed to the conclusion, after most careful consideration, that Mr Hulbert is very decidedly the best man for the Mayoral ohair. He is not so likely as his opponenb to need holding in leading strings, or to deliberately make himself a puppet. He will probably be found to rule wisely and well in tho Gounoil Chamber, to aot with becoming dignity on the Magisterial ben oh, and to disoharge with due decorum, no less than with true hospitality, the functions of a civio host. Therefore we hope to tee Mr Hulbert elected as Mayor of Ohristohurch for the coming year.
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The Star. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 1883., Star, Issue 4858, 24 November 1883
The Star. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 1883. Star, Issue 4858, 24 November 1883
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