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Thursday, 26 May 1904

Mr STORRER (Bass) - When I entered the House a short time ago, if any one had told me' that after the lapse of three months we should have done no business, I would not have believed him. I have listened to the debate which has been proceeding for now more than a week on the question of the printing of a letter referring to the adoption of the title of "Honorable " by certain honorable members, and I consider it an exceedingly regrettable waste of time. I am sorry that questions are not discussed in this Chamber quietly ' and coolly, and without the imputation of improper motives. I treat every honorable member as an honorable man, and have no desire to impute improper motives to any one. The members of this House were sent here' by a majority of those whom they represent, and their position is, therefore, not to be questioned. It is to be re gretted that we have heard so much about what has taken place in the Parliaments of the States, of the constitution of the labour, organizations, and of other irrelevant matters. I desire to correct a mistake which was made last night,- and repeated this evening, in reference to my position. .1 am not a member of the Labour Party. I am still an independent member, and hope to continue so, although I sympathize with .many of the aims of .the Labour Party, and shall vote with them on many questions which will come before the House. The complaint was' made yesterday that the members of the Ministry are not business -men. Now I am a business man, and have' had a workshop. When I entered that workshop I wished to see what my men had done for their money. If our masters, the people of Australia, could be brought here, they would find that we have done very little for our money during the past three months. I trust that this debate will not last any longer, and that if a no-confidence motion is to be moved, it will be dealt with as soon as possible. I have not had much experience in politics, and therefore I am new to the method of killing time with which I aim now being made acquainted. Personally I would rather not be in Parliament than take money for work which I have not done. We are not elected to indulge in party fights. We were sent here to legislate for the welfare of the Commonwealth. It has been my policy all my life to vote, not for men, but for measures, and I shall continue to adopt that attitude; Whenever I regard a measure as a good one, I shall vote for it, while if I believe it to be a bad one, I shall vote against it. There are many other matters to which I should like to refer, but the hour is late, and I consider the whole debate a waste of time.

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