The Letters

THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. DEMANDS FOR ECONOMY. FRUITS OF REFORM. CONSTITUTIONAL MODIFICATIONS. FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Apr. 21 [7] 1903; Jun. 1 1903. With the prorogation of the Victorian Parliament the political Temple of Janus in Australia has closed for the first time during the last two years. There will be no recommencement of the business of legislating until the end of May. Until then the country will have time to fully reconsider its position, and, judging by the result of the Tamworth election in this State, it has already begun to do so even in places where hitherto there has…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. TAMWORTH ELECTION. VOTERS “NEARLY TALKED TO DEATH.” FINANCIAL REFORM. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Apr. 14 1903]; Jun. 15 1903. The Tamworth election attained an importance in the eyes of the public to which it had in itself little real claim. As a victory for reform it meant something, but as a defeat for the Ministry it was also important. In the candidates there were great personal disparities sufficient in themselves to account for the electors’ choice without reference to any other contrast. Mr. Walsh, an inconsiderable Ministerialist, had no political reputation…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. PREMIERS’ CONFERENCE. POWERS OF SEPARATE STATES. CONFLICTING LOCAL INTERESTS. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Apr. 21 1903]; Jun. 26 1903. Easter has seen Sydney once more the acknowledged centre of the Commonwealth, and to all appearances as prosperous as ever. Never has the city been more crowded, more gay, nor holiday weather more propitious. The season opened brilliantly with the Governor-General’s ball, followed by the splendid display of the second Investiture. The functions also included a great garden party at Government House and an immense reception by the Lord…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. MURRAY RIVER DISPUTE. DEBTS OF THE STATES. FUTURE BORROWINGS. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Apr. 28 1903]; Jun. 29 1903. The publication of the resolutions framed by the Premiers’ Conference confirms the impression that its members took their responsibilities much more seriously to heart than they did at previous gatherings. At the same time the publication justifies the suspicion that the Murray River dispute prolonged the sittings and received the members’ best attention. While the resolutions adopted on other subjects reached the public on a Thursday, the elaborate…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. AUSTRALIAN RESOURCES. MORE WORLDS TO CONQUER. THE OPENINGS FOR CAPITALISTS. FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jan. 5 1903; Feb. 13 1903. Speaking generally, the year 1903 opens propitiously for Australia, though one must confess that no small proportion of its promise arises by way of contrast with the disastrous records of the past twelve months. The sanguine among us are already forecasting the chances of a fresh “boom”, relying on the cycle of good seasons supposed to be about to begin, on our increasing output of gold, and on the possibilities of a rise in the…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. NAVAL DEFENCE. THE QUESTION OF SUBSIDY. FISCAL POLICY. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [May 5 1903]; Jul. 3 1903. The Prime Minister has at last removed the reproach persistently levelled at him for the past two years of having neglected to appear on the public platform of Sydney in defence of his party policy. He has spoken there several times on Imperial issues and on current questions at sundry sectional meetings or banquets of a semi-political character, but not until about the end of April did he address the people in defence of his Parliamentary leadership. His…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. STRIKE IN VICTORIA. THE POSITION OF THE LABOUR PARTY. FRESH POLITICAL GROUPING. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [May 12 1903]; Jul. 20 1903. The strike of railway employees in Victoria is not conspicuous above all contemporary events in Australia, but it is memorable because it is another of the times. It is one landmark the more on the road all the States are travelling under the pressure of inexorable economic necessities. We have had strikes before. Those of twelve years ago surpassed in the extent of country affected, in the variety of interests prejudiced, and in the…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. END OF THE RAILWAY STRIKE. CRY FOR RETRENCHMENT. IDENTITY OF STATE INTERESTS. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [May 19 1903]; Jul. 25 1903. The Victorian railway strike is over. Some fifty of the engine-drivers and firemen who defiantly left their engines have lost their situations and are left dependent on private employment. This number includes those who officered and controlled the bold attempt to bring the Government of the State to its knees. The remainder has been permitted to return, but on half time only, shorn of rights to pensions or compensations, and entirely…
Tags: Barton
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. MR. CHAMBERLAIN’S FISCAL SCHEME. VIEWS OF RIVAL PARTIES. QUESTION OF NAVAL DEFENCE. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [May 26 1903]; Aug. 5 1903. Mr. Chamberlain’s Birmingham resuscitation of his former policy of preferential tariffs within the Empire has at once awakened a chorus of echoes throughout Australasia. It had been neglected of late because of the assumption that the Secretary for the Colonies had tacitly abandoned his idea. The project is now being discussed, however, in every newspaper of standing among us in addition to serving as the text for comments by most…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. RIVAL POLITICAL PARTIES. COMPLICATED POLITICS. THE NAVAL SUBSIDY. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Jun. 2 1903]; Aug. 10 1903. The Federal Parliament has begun its second and final session. The first lasted eighteen months, the second cannot exceed six, because the Senate elections must be held under the Constitution before the close of this year. The cost of polling Australia being estimated at £30,000, the spirit of economy now ruling will not permit a second disbursement of such an amount in May next for the Representatives alone. The present House is therefore…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. FISCAL POLICY OF THE EMPIRE. MR. CHAMBERLAIN’S PROPOSALS. AUSTRALIAN APPROVAL. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Jun. 9 1903]; Aug. 14 1903. Very tamely was “The Address in reply” debated before thin Houses and empty galleries. It was voted without a struggle after less than a fortnight’s discussion, barren of incidents or disclosures, and revealing nothing beyond the feebleness of the formal Opposition onset. From a tactical point of view Mr. Reid appears to have erred in not moving an amendment, or at all events in not shaping his indictment of Ministers into some more…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. TURBID POLITICS. THE JUDICIARY BILL. POLICY OF ECONOMY. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Jun. 16 1903]; Aug. 21 1903. The Japanese can have no possible complaint in connection with the reception their squadron has received during its visit to Australia. From the moment of their arrival in Perth and during their stays in Adelaide, Melbourne, and Hobart up to the carnival week just enjoyed in Sydney Admiral Kamimura and his officers have been the recipients of unremitting and flattering attentions. Not a day have they spent in any port that has not been crowded with…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. SITUATION IN NEW SOUTH WALES. THE GOVERNOR’S SPEECH. CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Jun. 23 1903]; Aug. 27 1903. Mr. Chamberlain has never set foot in Australia, but he has been very often with us in spirit since his assumption of office as Secretary for the Colonies, and for the last few weeks has been so prominent a presence in our politics that he has overshadowed our local statesmen. He is beginning to deflect their policies, to take possession of the public imagination, and by the magnetic influence which he exercises to sway our Parliaments…
THE NEW COMMONWEALTH. WATER FAMINE AT BROKEN HILL. STATE SOCIALISM. RETRENCHMENT MOVEMENT. FROM OUR SYDNEY CORRESPONDENT. [Jun. 30 1903]; Sep. 3 1903. The water famine at Broken Hill affords another illustration of the astonishing variety of physical and climatic conditions in Australia and of the happy irresponsibility with which the settlement of the interior has been and in spite of experience continues to be prosecuted. The story of the mines at this place outdoes most romances. Their exploitation made a number of great fortunes, and as if by the touch of an enchanter’s wand their…