Letters grouped by: Deakin

COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. LIQUOR AND GAMBLING. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jun. 4 1907; Jul. 20 1907. The shadow of the coming election begins to fall across the field of our State politics. A vigorous attempt is being made to gather into a single organisation all the anti-Labour elements in the community. It is not at all likely, however, that any party which is formed on the basis of mere antagonism to a rival will ever attain that degree of cohesion and unity which has enabled the Labour Party, in spite of being in a minority, to win so many political successes. It will have to…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. LEGISLATIVE PROBLEMS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Dec. 30 1907; Feb. 11 1908. Whether our antipodean methods are really understood at home is even yet open to much doubt. It is difficult to bring home clearly to people who have always lived and are still living under a single Government, subject throughout the whole area of legislative control to one all-powerful Legislature, the nature of the problems with which Australia is now constantly being confronted. Behind many of our principal political questions lies a preliminary constitutional problem. We…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. POLICY OF DEFENCE. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Dec. 16 1907; Jan. 24 1908. The Commonwealth is making history. Whether our Parliament is equal to its responsibilities or not it is certainly facing them with spirit and indeed with audacity. The proceedings of our State Legislatures, useful as they are, appear dull and drab beside the highly-coloured and possibly visionary projects of the Federal Government. Its Tariff has passed the House, and though ragged edges testify to the severity of the struggles by which this has been accomplished, the schedule is…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. COAL STRIKE ENDED. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Nov. 25 1907; Jan. 3 1908. The coal strike has ceased, as optimists predicted. Owing to the haste with which they flow at each other’s throats, without sufficient provocation or the slightest consideration for the public, neither masters nor men deserve the slightest sympathy. Both merit warm praise for the celerity with which they retraced their steps when brought to reason, though, as usual, it is the public that is left to pay the cost of their escapade. The one man who has profited by his association…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. INTER-STATE TROUBLES. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Nov. 4 1907; Dec. 21 1907. Australian politics are mixed and many coloured enough to remind their observers of a kaleidoscope. Every turn discovers some fresh combination of the old pieces, though, unlike the toy tube, these, if carefully watched, disclose a distinct development. We have at present a series of inter-State squabbles not without meaning and a few specially conspicuous incidents, such as the defeat of Mr. Moore, the West Australian Premier. A little while ago he asked Sir Frederick Bedford…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. FEDERAL LABOUR PARTY. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Oct. 21 1907; Dec. 11 1907. Mr. Watson’s resignation of the Leadership of the Federal Labour Party and proposed retirement from politics at an early date is the event of the session. The effects likely to arise from it can hardly be over estimated if the special character of the man and the peculiar instability of our parties is taken into consideration. In consequence of federation the State Legislatures since 1901 have been led by men who were and would have remained subordinates but for the transfer of…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. WAGES BOARDS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Oct. 14 1907; Nov. 20 1907. The battle over Preference has not more than begun. It is true that a Preference is secured for British wire netting, but none of the several curious votes taken before this was accomplished, almost incidentally, was really governed by fiscal considerations alone. Country districts have been inflamed with extravagant predictions of the increase in cost to graziers and farmers if the Government’s proposals were endorsed until some staunch Protectionists succumbed to the canard and…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. MR. CARRUTHERS’S RESIGNATION. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Oct. 1 1907; Nov. 13 1907. Mr. Carruthers’s resignation comes like a bolt from the blue. Nothing could be more unexpected. His health has been bad for some years, and especially since he became head of the Government. Its effect upon him explains a good many minor incidents, outbreaks, and escapades that have injured his cause and reputation. These have compelled the critical to deal with them so frequently that the solid successes he has achieved have been less appreciated by a public always…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. THE FEDERAL TREASURER. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Aug. 26 1907; Oct. 14 1907. Sir William Lyne, in his new offices of Federal Treasurer owing to Sir John Forrest’s retirement, and of Leader of the House during Mr. Deakin’s absence, has proved much more successful than his opponents are prepared to admit. He, too, returned from the Mother Country with enlarged prestige. The part he took in the Navigation Commission stands to his credit most, but the aggressive attitude adopted by him under the taunts of the Free Importers in London also tells in his…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. FEDERAL FINANCE. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Aug. 19 1907; Sep. 28 1907. Last week’s Budget and Tariff are memorable in themselves for their particular proposals, but perhaps more memorable still in their general structure. Putting all fiscalism aside they would stand out conspicuously among our political landmarks because the financial policy roughly outlined in them is more independently and expressly Federal than any hitherto formulated. Sir George Turner began in 1901 with apologetic phrases by the establishment of a minimum Federal administration at…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. INDUSTRIAL ARBITRATION. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Aug. 6 1907; Sep. 21 1907. Last week the three-party conflict in Australia had become responsible for two crises. That in Queensland was settled very simply. When the Labour Caucus declared its intention of sitting alone and acting alone on the cross benches, the Premier, Mr. Kidston, at once challenged them with an intimation that under those circumstances he did not intend to remain in office. As his resignation meant Mr. Philp’s return to power the Caucus angrily and sullenly rescinded its resolution,…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. THE MURRAY RIVER. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jul. 30 1907; Sep. 5 1907. The substantial unity of character of Australian politics is just now being illustrated conspicuously. Always visible to the careful observer, the likeness was formerly less marked in State Legislatures than it has become since the Federal Parliament has added another field for the exhibition of our tendencies as a people. Formerly when fiscal issues were in abeyance there were few real distinctions between State parties except that of “ins” and “outs”. While very gravely earnest as to…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. FEDERAL PARTY RISKS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jul. 22 1907; Aug. 27 1907. Our Federal situation in its party aspects overshadows everything political. Another week has passed quietly in both Chambers. The ordinary business of legislation is proceeding smoothly, scarcely a ripple in the stream indicating that the rapids are close at hand. The Prime Minister’s absence, though most unfortunate, is not without compensations, since if he had been in charge of the House he would by this time have been in open conflict with the Labour ultras. On the other hand,…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. ATTACKS ON MR. DEAKIN. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jul. 15 1907; Aug. 21 1907. Australian politics, Federal and State, are still in a condition of ferment without getting to a clarifying stage. The session of our State Legislature was held rather to fulfil an undertaking than to accomplish any definite purpose, and vanished within a fortnight, leaving not a trace behind. It is true that Mr. Carruthers was attacked, and this time openly, for his professional relations with one of the cases included in the Land Office scandals. Speaking from memory he had…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. LABOUR AND THE MINISTRY. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jul. 8 1907; Aug. 17 1907. Parliament has opened; to be more accurate several Parliaments have opened, and in a few days more there will be seven of them in full play. Setting aside the six State Legislatures whose performances provide plenty of entertainment for onlookers and of material for thought to the more seriously inclined the English observer is likely to find in the National Senate and House of Representatives quite enough to occupy any leisure of his for political inquiry. There is a Governor-…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. A COMING CRISIS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jul. 3 1907; Aug. 15 1907. The Conference of State Premiers held in Brisbane some weeks ago, though held then is only about to become effective now. Its decisions, though largely negative in form, were positive, aggressive, and defiant. Its deliberations from beginning to end, no matter what their subject might be, were permeated with a strong anti-federal spirit. The dominant note in every debate was jealousy and dislike of the Commonwealth and all its works. Of course the most fervid champion of State rights was…
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jul. 1 1907; Aug. 10 1907. Our Prime Minister has already received five welcomes, while a sixth is still in prospect providing he can find time to visit this city. Probably his hold is weaker here than in any other capital. Assuredly he has less Press and fewer direct supporters in Parliament from New South Wales than either of the other parties, and yet with the Bulletin transformed into an appreciative critic, one evening paper in the city and a number of friendly country newspapers at his back, his party is making much headway…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. MR. DEAKIN ON THE IMPERIAL CONFERENCE. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jun. 24 1907; Jul. 31 1907. The Governor-General, having concluded his visit to the Northern Territory, is now on his way to Sydney. His Prime Minister, after spending a few hours in Perth, has passed on to Melbourne, having travelled some 2,000 miles since he first touched Australian soil. Lord Northcote will have journeyed just as far by the time he meets his Ministers in Melbourne, though the two between them will have only circumnavigated two-thirds of the continent in their passages…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. NEW SOUTH WALES AND THE FEDERATION. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Jun. 8 1907; Jul. 23 1907. The agenda paper for the forthcoming Premiers’ Conference in Brisbane has just been published. Outside the question of the financial relations of the Commonwealth and States—which will be taken up where it was left by the last Conference of Treasurers in Melbourne—there is no matter of the first importance to be discussed. According to the usual practice, each of the State Governments has furnished a list of the topics which it desires to submit to the Conference.…
THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA. THE IMPERIAL CONFERENCE. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, May 28 1907; Jul. 17 1907. It is still too soon to sum up the full results of the recent Imperial Conference, but apart from the attitude of our local Press alluded to in my last letter it would be idle to pretend that the non possumus attitude of the Imperial Government towards almost every suggestion that has been made by the Australian Prime Minister for strengthening Imperial relationships has not already caused a good deal of genuine disappointment in Australia. The cablegrams furnish a daily…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE TEMPER OF THE PRESS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, May 21 1907; Jul. 13 1907. What the average elector really thinks on any given subject is at least as great a puzzle in Australia as anywhere else. Indeed, it is greater than in England, because our States are still separate geographically with but a vague consensus of opinion, even on most Federal questions. Our newspapers are all of them limited to relatively small areas in circulation and cater for merely local views. They show nothing more than what in the judgment of some State coterie the elector ought to…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE COMMONWEALTH CAPITAL. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, May 12 1907; Jul. 5 1907. SirJohn Forrest, the Acting Prime Minister, has been visiting Sydney, and his visit has revived the controversy over the Federal Capital site. All Sir John’s long experience in politics has not taught him the art of concealing thoughts that are likely to be unpalatable to his audience. In an interview on the first day after he arrived he announced that in his opinion the delay in fixing the Capital site was due to the action of the New South Wales Parliament. This is an opinion which…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE LAND SCANDALS. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Apr. 16 1907; Jun. 25 1907. Of late, as is usual when there is no other question engaging public attention, a violent controversy has been proceeding in the columns of the Daily Press about the alleged wrongs that New South Wales is suffering at the hands of the Commonwealth. There is nothing fresh in the correspondence. The statement of the grievances of New South Wales is just as vague and shadowy as it has always been on similar occasions. The only complaint of which details are given concerns the failure of the…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. THE NAVAL AGREEMENT FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Apr. 10 1907; Jun. 4 1907. We have just seen the departure for England of some forty Australian and New Zealand bluejackets who have served their term in the locally manned ships of the Australian Squadron, and are now, under recently devised regulations, going to England to complete their naval training. It is understood that they will qualify themselves by service on board ship or in naval schools to fill the higher ratings in the Service, and will then return to Australia to act as instructors or petty or warrant…
FEDERATED AUSTRALIA. IMMIGRATION. FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT. SYDNEY, Apr. 3 1907; May 28 1907. Time was not very long ago when the State Premiers were complaining that the policy of the Commonwealth prevented the free flow of immigration into Australia. More than a few of them and of their Press supporters helped to swell the chorus of unintelligent misrepresentation of the rather foolish action of the first Federal Government. Today the positions are exactly reversed. It is the Commonwealth that is chasing the State Premiers, who are more or less apologetically explaining away their own…