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Thursday, 6 October 1904

Mr TUDOR (Yarra) - I recognise that at this stage of the debate very little that is fresh can be said, and I should not have risen had it not been for a statement made by the honorable and learned member for Wannon. I must admit that I am rather surprised at the great concern which is being displayed by the Government and their followers with respect to the alliance entered into between the Labour Party and those honorable members who sit in the Opposition corner. If any proof were needed that the alliance is justified, and that it is the best that can be done under the circumstances in the interests of democracy, it is afforded by the hostility that honorable members opposite are exhibiting towards it. The honorable member for Larig, who spoke early in the debate, adopted the alliance programme as his text, and every honorable member on the Government side who has since spoken has, to a greater or lesser degree, followed his example. They have adopted exactly the same attitude that they assumed when the Conciliation and ' Arbitration Bill was under discussion. They claim to be the true champions and representatives of the working classes. This afternoon the honorable member for Oxley declared that he failed to see how a doctor could represent the workers, quite oblivious of the fact that there are more doctors upon the other side of the House than there are upon this. Last night he stated that the workers should exhibit the self-reliant spirit which characterized them thirty or forty years ago. If his remark had reference to the farmers of Victoria, who are continually approaching the Government with requests for assistance, I quite agree with him. In my opinion, the workers in the cities should not be slower in appealing to the Government for aid than are those in the country. At a later stage I may have something further to say upon this aspect of the matter. I was pleased to hear the apology offered By the honorable member for Oxley for the statement which he made last evening to the effect that every member of the Labour Party is absolutely bound to vote upon a. no-confidence motion as he is directed by the caucus. When the accuracy of that statement was denied, I regret to say that the Prime Minister interjected, " Oh, they must have altered their rules lately." Surely the right honorable gentleman is aware that when he submitted a want of confidence motion in the Barton Administration he received the support of no less than six members of the Labour Party.

Sir John Forrest - But this motion was submitted by tHe honorable member's leader. The case is therefore somewhat different.

Mr TUDOR - It is absolutely the same. Every member of the Labour Party has perfect liberty to' vote as he chooses upon this question. I am satisfied that when the opportunity presents itself, the electors of the Commonwealth will express their opinions of the action of some honorable members who are sitting behind the Government in disregarding a decision which was' arrived at in caucus, to the effect that it was inadvisable to enter into any coalition.

Mr Wilson - They will get that opportunity in about two years' time.

Mr TUDOR - I hope that they will get it at a much earlier date. In this connexion I desire to quote from the Age, and I think I may do so without any prejudice, because that journal has never given me a line of support. The Age of the 16th August contains the following : -

At the last caucus of the protectionist body, held on the 19th May, that party distinctly declined to accept any coalition, and carried the following resolution : - " That this party is not prepared to consider proposals for a coalition except on the condition that the Prime Ministership of any coalition be accorded to the present leader of this party."

Has effect been given to that resolution?

Mr Johnson - If effect had been given to it, would the protectionist members have supported the present Prime Minister?

Mr TUDOR - I am not a member of the caucus, and I am no more in a position to answer that question than is the honorable member.

Mr Johnson - It .would be just as well to know that.

Mr TUDOR - As the honorable member is comparatively a "new chum " in the House, perhaps he is not aware of the fact that I am a member of the Labour Party, and consequently imagines that I have access to another caucus. The Age article continues -

Nothing that has since taken place has modified that situation. The resolution stands. The need for protectionist cohesion has 'not been weakened by the lapse of time; the contrary is the case. If one single protectionist joins in a Reid coalition, he breaks the strength of his party, while he leaves the free-trade section intact.

When we consider that there are three members of the Government who to a large extent owe their political existence to the fact that they have been continually written up by the Age-

Mr McCay - Does the honorable member suggest that the Age has habitually written me up?

Mr TUDOR - I will show that it has written the Minister of Defence down since his recent action in associating himself with free-traders.

Mr McCay - It has never made a pet of me.

Mr TUDOR - Very likely. I believe that the whole of the Victorian representatives in this House, with the exception of the Conservative five, were upon the Age ticket at the last general election. That organ supported their candidature. Yet, despite the fact that some of these honorable members were returned pledged to a definite platform, they have absolutely broken away from their party, and are now doing their best to disintegrate it. That is a matter upon which the electors will pronounce judgment. Upon previous occasions I have heard certain honorable 'members denounce Victoria as the home of blacklegs, and of men who have no principle. I am inclined to think that they are now in a position to quote some very good examples in that connexion - those honorable members who have broken away from their election pledges. Having agreed to a certain resolution in caucus, they afterwards desired to dragoon the minority into submission, and. finding that that was impossible, without holding any further meeting, they declared " We will leave the minority and support, a man whom we regard as a menace to the Commonwealth."

Mr Wilson - Does not the honorable member believe in majority rule?

Mr TUDOR - I do. 'But the honorable member does not represent a majority of his constituents.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - That can be said of a good many honorable members.

Mr TUDOR - There are eight honorable members upon the other side of the House who do not represent a majority of their constituents, and five upon this side. The honorable member for Corangamite polled only 4,600 votes, and there were 81488 votes recorded against him.

Mr Wilson - How many did Mr. Wynne poll ?

Mr TUDOR - I have not the remotest idea, but it does not follow that every elector who voted for Mr. Wynne would have supported the honorable member.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Why not agree to a second ballot, and thus solve the difficulty ?

Mr TUDOR - I am quite prepared to support a proposal of that character, and I am satisfied that the Labour Party would not lose anything by its adoption. The eight honorable members upon the other side of the House who represent minorities polled 33,100 votes, whereas 52,000 votes were recorded against them. They are thus in a minority of 18,900 votes.

Mr Robinson - Tell us about the honorable member for Melbourne South.

Mr TUDOR - I shall deal with those honorable members who represent minorities and who sit upon this side of the chamber in a few moments. If the honorable member for Wannon desired to refer to the case of the honorable member for. Melbourne South he had ample opportunity to do so in the two long speeches which he has recently delivered. He himself polled only 5,300 votes, and there were 6,900 votes recorded against him.

Mr Wilson - How many did Mr. Hogan poll?

Mr TUDOR - I have not the slightest idea.

Mr Wilson - Did the honorable membei nottake a note?

Mr TUDOR - I think it is the honorable and learned member for Wannon "who will have totake a note as to how Mr. Hogan polled, and as to how many votes he is likelv to obtain at the next election. Five minority members on this side had 38,000 votes polled in their favour, and 45.000 against, so that they are only in a minority of some 6,000, as compared with a minority of 18,000 showin on the other side. That proves to me that honorable members on this side are no more in a minority than are honorable members on the other side, and' I think it will be admitted that we have the best of the argument so far as representation of minorities is concerned. One or two honorable members on this side happened to be in a minority of 100 or 200, though the honorable member for Southern Melbourne was in a minority of 900. To return to the thread of my argument, from which I was drawn by an interjection by the honorable member for Corangamite, I should like to read the following extract from the Melbourne Age of the 17 th August, in reference to the Liberal Protectionist' Party who have broken away : -

It seems pretty certain that Sir George Turner has agreed to become one of a FreetradeProtectionist Coalition. This' is in defiance of a decision arrived at by the whole party in caucus in May last, and is consequently a direct and unauthorized flouting of the Protectionist party's deliberate resolve. Such an act as that, taken at the. invitation of the free-trade leader, and contrary to the will of his own party, cuts Sir George Turner off from his natural allies. It would have been in the power of the Protectionist party, elected as it was on a distinct fiscal issue, for what might seem good reasons, to order a Coalition with the free-traders. In that case, Sir George Turner, as a protectionist, would have been free to do . as he is reported to have done - join Mr. Reid in an agreement to sink the fiscal issue. But, as we have shown, that Coalition is the very thing which the Protectionist party, sitting and voting together, has refused to assent to. And in these circumstances for Sir George Turner to have assisted in bringing about such a Coalition is an act of party repudiation which places him outside the organization.

Further on the Age says : -

It is conceivable that the protectionists who have taken the . extreme step of cutting themselves off from their party colleagues have stipulated that these election pledges in favour of preferential trade and the Bonus Bill shall be given effeGt to.

My opinion is that there is as much chance of getting an Iron Bonus Bill and preferential trade from the Prime Minister as there is of the Minister of Trade and Customs persuading the right honorable gentleman to put on a stock tax.

Mr Mcwilliams - Is there any hope from the other side of a Bonus Bill ?

Mr TUDOR - So far as I am concerned I am prepared to take up the same attitude that I did on the previous occasion, an attitude which I believe was supported by a fair majority of my constituents. I have not to answer to any one but my constituents. I have not broken away from my pledges, and I am now only dealing with those honorable members who have done so.

Mr Mcwilliams - Does the honorable member say that there is no hope of a Bonus Bill from the other side?

Mr TUDOR - At present I am quoting what the Age says. I believe there is no possible chance of getting from the present Government an Iron Bonus Bill which would' be acceptable to the workers in this particular industry ; that is my own private Opinion.

Mr Wilson - Nor from the other side.

Mr TUDOR - That is the opinion of the honorable member for Corangamite.

Mr Johnson - And that opinion is supported and proved by the speeches which have been delivered.

Mr TUDOR - The article in the Age proceeds -

The electors, who are quick to note and mark crooked courses, will not be slow to understand the meaning of any such course as this. We have no fear that any large section of them will consent to play this ignoble part. Office may be sweet. It is a temptation at all times under our accursed Party system. It is ever luring away weak and venal men from their allegiance to principle. But when office is accepted on the condition of openly violating sacred pledges given to the people, it falls as a blight upon its possessor. Mr. McCay has once before known the weight of an outraged public opinion. He was once decisively rejected for what his constituents interpreted as party perfidy. If he has sold his protectionist loyalty for the sake of office with Mr Reid, the time for reckoning is both sure and near.

Mr McCay -" If " !

Mr TUDOR - " If " - that is for the constituents of the honorable and learned member, and not for me, to say.

Mr McCay - Hear, hear !

Mr TUDOR - The Age article goes on -

Strange things happen in times of political crisis ; but it is not often that we see in modern Parliaments any dramatic exhibition of fiscal renegadism.

In another leading article the Age deals with the matter in the same way, showing how honorable members have broken away from their pledges to their constituents. I do not desire to read the other extract, because it goes over practically the same ground, pointing out that those persons who, having promised that they were going to support preferential trade and an Iron Bonus Bill in addition to fiscal peace, broke away, and are at the present time betraying their constituents by joining a Government who have absolutely no intention of bringing forward chose measures. The Minister of Trade and Customs, when' dealing with the subject of the caucus of the Labour Party at Ballarat, stated that if there were a meeting of 25, and 13 voted on one side, and 12 on the other, the minority would be compelled to sink their opinions and vote with the majority.

Mr Hutchison - And that was after the Minister of Trade and Customs had been told in the House that we did nothing of the kind.

Mr McLean - It has been proved a dozen times since that what I stated is absolutely true.

Mr TUDOR - If the Minister is relying on the pledge he previously read, it is a pledge quoted from the Melbourne Argus.

Mr McLean - No.

Mr TUDOR - Had the Minister a correct copy, or did he take the pledge from a leading article in the Argus? I know that the honorable gentleman had a copy which was taken from that newspaper.

Mr McLean - I did not take the copy of the pledge from any newspaper.

Mr TUDOR - Then is was probably a copy supplied by some industrious supporter of the Government.

Mr McLean - I got the copy from an authoritative quarter.

Mr TUDOR - If the pledge on which the Minister relies is the one he quoted in the House, it is not correct.

Mr McLean - Is it correct that on matters affecting the platform the Labour Party must vote with the majority?

Mr TUDOR - On matters affecting the platform, certainly.

Mr McLean - That has a very wide application.

Mr TUDOR - That is the platform to which we pledge ourselves before our constituents. That is what honorable members on the other side do not do; they evidently pledge themselves, and break away afterwards. We pledge ourselves, on all questions affecting the platform, to vote as the majority may decide; and that, in my opinion, is absolutely fair and right. I would not support any pledge less binding. If we are to. judge by the way our party is growing in the various States, the electors of Australia are quite satisfied with the way in which we are working, and that our pledge and caucus meetings are approved of by an increasing number of electors. While our party is growing with every succeeding election, that cannot be said for any other party in the Commonwealth. So called " reform " or other movements may run a little while in New South Wales or Victoria, but the people get tired of them, and, finding that the movements are largely bogus, they vote for the Labour Party. The people of Australia are quite satisfied with our pledge. When we find conservatives objecting to our platform and expressing great regret that the Labour Party have seen fit to join with some other party, the question arises whether the action of the Labour Party is right or wrong; and I, for one, believe it to be right. In that opinion I am backed up by every honorable member on this side of the House. If honorable members opposite thought that the Labour Party were talcing a wrong action - that they were doing anything to weaken their position before the electors - they would be delighted, and tell us we were doing a wise thing. When, however, honorable members opposite express regret at our action, it is pretty nearly proof positive that we are on the right track.

Mr Mcwilliams - Is that why the Labour Leagues denounce the alliance?

Mr TUDOR - While certain labour leagues denounce, other labour leagues approve of the alliance.

Mr Wilson - The central executive denounce the alliance.

Mr TUDOR - They do no such thing. What they do say is, that they do not indorse the alliance, and will not be bound by it. If the honorable member for Corangamite read's the only labour paper in Victoria, the Tocsin, he will see that on this question opinion is divided, as opinion will be divided on almost any political question. In a body constituted as is the Labour Party of meo who are not hide-bound conservatives, like the majority on the other side, there is undoubtedly room for differences of opinion. Honorable members opposite state that labour members represent only trade unionists. It is not so long ago since we had the' Tariff under discussion in the Chamber, and I can remember that honorable members opposite, and particularly the honorable and learned member for Werriwa, insisted that those of us who advocated protectionist duties were representatives not of the workers, but of the employers. The honorable member for Laanecoorie, who refers to me as the representative of a class, is prepared to admit that although a member of the Labour

Party, I was one of the best supporters that the Government had when the Tariff was before the House. Members of the Labour Party represent not merely trade unionists, but all workers throughout the Commonwealth, and are ready to do what they can to remedy any wrongs from which they may suffer . The Trades' Hall Council, on many occasions, has had applications from country workers asking us to remedy the sweating conditions from which they suffered, and we have endeavoured on all occasions to do our utmost for them, without inquiring whether they belonged to a union or not. Yet honorable members opposite say that we represent only trade unionists. Will they tell me that there are over 7,000 trade unionists in my electorate? They cannot do so, and yet I received over 7,000 male votes at the last election. Thousands of men who cannot join unions are supporting the Labour Party to-day, and that accounts for the objection which honorable members opposite have to the growth of our party. The workers of the Commonwealth are beginning to realize that the Labour Party represent all workers, whether they belong to a union or not. I believe it would be possible, in some cases, for men and wpmen to belong to unions.

Mr Kelly - Members of the Labour Party call them " scabs, " and " blacklegs," only to chasten them, I suppose?

Mr TUDOR - I have no doubt that the honorable member for Wentworth would call them " free labourers," or " loyalists," as the men were called who, during the railway strike in Victoria, showed that they were prepared to take the bread and butter out of other men's mouths. It was by those terms also that the men who did the same kind of thing during the late struggle that occurred in Gippsland were called. The honorable member for Flinders, referring to the Gippsland strike, said that the members of the Miners' Union had been demanding increased wages until the employers found it impossible to pay anything more. If the honorable member knew anything about the case, he would know that on the last occasion of difference, the employers endeavoured to reduce the wages of the men by twenty-five per cent., and because the men objected to that reduction, they struck. When we were discussing the question of preference to unionists, honorable members opposite said that employers are not vindictive, and that with them it makes no difference whether a man is a member of a union or not. Although I happen to work in a trade ir which practically all the workers who are eligible are unionists, and the employers can therefore make no distinction, I know that a great many employers in other industries do make such distinctions, and dismiss men who are unionists. I can mention a . case where the general secretary of a union left Victoria for another State, and his name was published in the leading columns of a newspaper in that State, with the announcement that an agitator had arrived, and warning employers to beware of giving this man work, because he would stir up trouble and strife. Many of us have gone through the mill, and know what it is to be out of work, and have been brought into close contact with the suffering brought about by strikes and locks-out. We are therefore most anxious that some means of settling industrial disputes should be resorted to other than the barbarous methods pursued by employers. Honorable members opposite object to the Labour Party on the ground that they have machine politics, and move as a machine. We are not the only persons who move as a machine, or who believe in machine politics. It has been the custom to denounce every worker who rises from the ranks and holds any official position in a worker's organization as an " agitator."

Mr Poynton - A "paid agitator."

Mr TUDOR - If he happens to hold an official secretaryship for which he is paid, he is of course referred to as a "paid agitator." Honorable members opposite have from time to time referred to Tom Mann as a "paid agitator." Mr. Tom Mann is at present doing very good work in showing the workers that they should pay attention to politics as well as to trades unionism. What have the other side done in this connexion ? They have at the present time some ten or a dozen agitators going round the country - Sievwright, Walpole, Douglas and others.

Mr Hutchison - Is Sievwright the man who was in Court lately for not keeping his father?

Mr TUDOR - I see that another organizing secretary has been appointed to rope in the farmers, and to tell them how disastrous it will be if the Labour Party obtain any more power in this country. We have been told that Tom Mann is preaching doctrines which are very injurious to the interests of the community. I made the statement some eighteen months ago in this House that Mr. Walpole had said at Lilydale1 that marriage was a luxury for the workers.

Mr Mahon - Who is Walpole?

Mr TUDOR - He is the paid agitator of the Victorian Employers' Federation. I placed on record then what he said at Lilydale. Mr. Palamountain, writing recently in the Launceston Examiner, referred to the fact that Mr. Walpole had made these statements at Lilydale. It would' appear that the editor of the Examiner sent a copy of the newspaper containing Mr. Palamountain's letter to Mr. Walpole, and I have here extracts from the Examiner of the 20th of September, in which Mr. Walpole deals with the matter. I propose to read first his denial, then his statement, and then a letter which I have from the man who took the report of Mr. Walpole's speech at Lilydale, and which he says has never been contradicted in that place. I went there myself last week to find, out whether it had been denied, and found that it had not. Mr. Walpole, in his letter to the editor of the Examiner, says -

Let me now say that for some two years past the gutter press of Australia has industriously circulated a lie about myself. Lately that lie has grown bigger and bolder, and has even been repeated in the Federal Parliament by members who take their "facts" from the section of the press referred to. I have not thought it worth while to pay the least attention to falsehoods emanating from such a source, and which have hitherto not been noticed in the respectable press. But now that you, sir, and quite rightly under the circumstances, give publicity tothe charge as repeated by Mr. Palamountain, I take the opportunity of nailing the lie to the counter on the authority of gentlemen whose names are given, and whose honour cannot be questioned. . . . But the lie which Mr. Palamountain seems to have so much faith in was based entirely upon a malignant misrepresentation of replies I gave to some questions asked me at the close of a lecture I delivered at Lilydale on 12th April, 1902.

He then gives three letters, one from Mr. M. C. G. Hutton, stating that he has gone to the trouble to secure a refutation of the statement; another from the Rev. R. G. Burke, who proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. Walpole, and who says -

There was nothing said antagonistic to fair play or Christian morality. Had I thought so, I should have protested with no uncertain sound.

It is evident, from the correspondence, that Mr. Walpole submitted three questions to which he sought replies,I give only the third as being important -

(3)   That the working men of this country should not marry, because, if they remain single, they can work for lower wages.

This is a deduction from absolutely imaginary premises. Nothing in the lecture could justify such a conclusion. - (Signed) Richard George

Burke, LL.B. (Clergyman).

Mr. Walpolesays

When Mr. Palamountain compares the above letters with the statements he has collected from the gutter press, I am sure he will do me the justice of acquitting. me of the slanderous charges which have been made against me.

Sir John Forrest - Why cannot the honorable member believe Mr. Walpole?

Mr TUDOR - I will tell the right honorable member for Swan why I cannot believe him, if he will wait a little while. I do not think that honorable members generally will believe his statement after they have heard what I have to s'ay. Mr. Morey, who seconded the vote of thanks, wrote as follows : -

I was present at a lecture delivered by Mr: Walpole at the Red House, 12th April, 1902, and remember asking, at its conclusion, the question - " Did the lecturer expect a man and his family to live on the amount which he had referred to as a living wage?" Although his reply, in some respects, was not as satisfactory as t desired, I am quite certain it contained nothing whatever out of harmony with Christian morality or fair play, and ' I am astonished to find that any one could draw the conclusions which I hear have been drawn from the words comprising his answer to my question.

They are the denials. Now for the newspaper itself.

Sir- JohnForrest. - What newspaper?

Mr TUDOR - It is the Lilydale Express.

Sir John Forrest - Why should the honorable member refuse to take the word of Mr. Walpole and the other two gentlemen ? Why should he go to the newspaper ?

Mr TUDOR - Mr. Walpole's statement was made at Lilydale, but the denials - or, rather, the alleged denials - appear in Launceston.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Would the honorable member father all the statements made by Socialists?

Mr TUDOR - These are really not denials, as honorable members can see. I desire to enter into this matter in order that we may understand ' what we have to expect if persons holding Mr. Walpole's opinions are able to impose their views upon the country. To use an illustration given by the Prime Minister, we do not object to a young tiger, except that we know that when it grows up it will be dangerous. We do not object to kind-hearted gentlemen like honorable members opposite; but when the paid agitator of their party goes about preaching these doctrines, we call attention to what that party is prepared to do if it gets the opportunity. No doubt Mr. Walpole said these things in an unguarded moment. As was the case with the honor able member for Oxley this afternoon, they " slipped out." I have read the alleged denials; I will now read the original statement.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Is Mr. Walpole a member of the Political Labour League?

Mr TUDOR - If Mr. Walpole were to join our league we should take care that he did not go about the country making statements of this kind, or we should turn him out. Mr. Walpole states that the report is quoted from the " gutter press." In the first place it has to be remarked that Mr. Walpole had advertised his lecture in the previous issue of the newspaper - The Lilydale Express. Consequently, according to his own statement, he advertised in the - " gutter press." In the second place, he sent up nearly two columns of his lecture in the form of stereotype to the Lilydale Express. Of course he had gone over the text of the lecture carefully time after time to see that nothing crept into it that should not be there.

Mr Mauger - He does the same with regard to his lecture on the Factories Act.

Mr TUDOR - I believe this is the same stereotype.

Mr Mauger - It must be nearly worn out by this time.

Mr TUDOR - I may mention that on another occasion Mr. Walpole went down to Werribee to deliver an address, but unfortunately the meeting was not prepared to believe what he stated as facts. Many questions were asked, and the .meeting got out of his hands. Nevertheless the report of the lecture came out just the same, because the stereotype had been sent to the local newspaper, and it contained many things which did not actually take place at the meeting. At the Lilydale meeting the chairman was Mr. A. B. Taylor, President of the Shire. At the conclusion of the lecture he said -

Whatever their opinions might have been before hearing Mr. Walpole, no one could gainsay that there was not a great deal of truth in what they had listened to that afternoon. There was no doubt the time had arrived for employers and producers to form strong alliances to watch and protect their interests He had been greatly instructed by the address which had been so ably delivered by Mr. Walpole, and he would ask some gentleman to move a vote of thanks to the speaker. The Rev. R. G. Bourke would do so with very great pleasure, as he was quite in accord with the doctrine expounded by the lecturer. Mr. B. Morey, in seconding the motion, was somewhat puzzled as to how a. married man could exist on the amount stipulated by Mr. Walpole as .1 " living wage." The motion was carried with acclamation.

Mr. Walpole,in replying , bear in mind that this is not his lecture, but his reply - expressed his thanks for the cordiai reception he had met with at the hands of the meeting. What was lost in numbers was made up by the appreciation and intelligence of his listeners.

Honorable members have evidently heard that phrase before. Touching the matter of the living wage, Mr. Walpole said -

Marriage was a luxury, and so were " long sleevers," attending theatres, &c, and it was not fair to compel employers to pay for such things.

That was Mr. Walpole's reply.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - He meant the " long sleevers."

Mr TUDOR - The right honorable member for Swan has asked why I do not accept Mr. Walpole's denial. I will explain. I went up to Lilydale last week.

Sir John Forrest - I think, the honorable member ought to accept it.

Mr TUDOR - I think that the right honorable member will agree with me when I have read the letters which I intend to quote. Indeed, I have not the slightest doubt about it. I went to the. office of the Lilydale Express, and I asked whether the report had ever been denied in Lilydale. The reply was, "No."

Sir John Forrest - To whom did the honorable member go?

Mr TUDOR - To a man who was working on the paper. The man who' seconded the vote of thanks, Mr. Morey, has a two column advertisement in the Express. I asked the proprietor of the paper whether he was present at the lecture. He said, " Certainly." I said, " Has the report ever been denied?" He replied, " Never in Lilydale." I then wrote to him the following letter : - 29th September, 1904.

Thomas Oliver, Esq.,

Proprietor Lilydale Express.

Dear Sir, - I have seen a copy of your paper of 18th April, 1902, which contains an account of Mr. Walpole's address at Lilydale on the Shops and Factories Act. I am anxious to know if the accuracy of the report has ever been questioned by any one who was present at the meeting. 1 do not refer to the stereotyped portion, but the latter portion of the report, including Mr. Walpole's reply to the vote of thanks. Kindly inform me if your report of his reply can be relied on as correct. Awaiting a reply at your earliest convenience, - I remain, &c,

Frank G. Tudor.

Mr Mcwilliams - Did the honorable member ever know a newspaper to acknowledge that its reDort was incorrect?

Mr TUDOR - I received the following reply from Mr. Oliver, the gentleman who wrote the report. He is the proprietor of the newspaper, and, I believe, was his own reporter at Mr. Walpole's meeting.

Dear Sir, -ReMr. Walpole's address at Lilydale on the Shops and Factories 'Act. The accuracy of the report has never been questioned, and that portion of the report including Mr. Walpole's reply to the vote of thanks is thoroughly reliable. - I am, yours faithfully, Thomas Oliver.

Sir John Forrest - Does the honorable member think that that is sufficient?

Mr TUDOR - Certainly. I would sooner accept the statement of the man who reported the speech, and of those present at the meeting, than a contradiction made at Launceston, 200 or 300 miles away, a considerable time afterwards. Why was this contradiction not made at Lilydale, or in Melbourne? If it is made in Melbourne, I shall publish these letters alongside of it, or in the next issue of the newspaper.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - In any case, what has the matter to do with us?

Mr Poynton - This is the man on whom honorable gentlemen opposite depend.

Mr TUDOR - Certainly. The Victorian Employers' Federation is; the chief backer of the Ministry in this State.

Mr Batchelor - And throughout Australia.

Mr TUDOR - Yes; that body and its allies in the other States. Speaking on the Address-in-Reply., the Prime Minister stated that he had a whole-souled contempt for those who had banded together in Queensland, and had subscribed , ?10,000, to defeat labour candidates. But when speaking to the Employers', Producers', and Farmers' Federation, six months later, his remarks were something quite different. I admit that he is a lightning-change artist, and that in six months he could make, and has made, many changes. He has now gathered into his party many of those whom he previously denounced. Speaking quite recently at the meeting to which I refer, he is reported to have said -

The Labour Party had turned him out because he had got too slow for them after he had got what he wanted. Then the" found Sir William Lyne, and in twelve months they had got more out of him (Sir William Lyne) than they would have got out of the speaker in 200 years.

That is the Age report. The Argus report reads as follows': -

Then they got hold of Sir William Lyne, and in about twelve months they got more out of him than they would have got out of me in about 200 years.

The reports of the Sydney Morning Herald and the Sydney Daily Telegraph contain exactly the same statement.

Mr Wilson - The Prime Minister has denied the accuracy of those reports.

Mr TUDOR - I have not heard any denial. At any rate, he can make a personal explanation, and show that I am wrong: when he does so I am quite prepared to withdraw.

Mr McLean - What he claims to have said is that the honorable member for Hume was squeezed more.

Mr TUDOR - What could the Labour Party squeeze out of him except, legislation or better administration? Accepting the statement which the honorable and learned member made, it would, on his own showing, take thirty -three years to pass each of the following measures : - An Old-Age Pensions Act, an Arbitration Act, an Early Closing Act, an Adult Suffrage Act. and a Miners' Relief Act.

Mr SYDNEY SMITH (MACQUARIE, NEW SOUTH WALES) - The late Sir Henry Parkes was the first to propose adult suffrage.

Mr TUDOR - Then why did not the Prime Minister carry it into law during the five years that he . was in power ? It is said that we have been going too slowly in this debate;, but the speed at which the right honorable gentleman thinks it proper to go is the rate of .one Act to every thirtythree years.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - How long have the Labour Party been in favour of adult suffrage ?

Mr TUDOR - The honorable member was, I believe, the leader of that party before I entered public life. Perhaps he can inform me whether at that time they were, or were not, in favour of it ?

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - Most of them were against it.

Mr TUDOR -That was perhaps due to . the honorable member's influence. If honorable members opposite are to give us only one Act in thirty-six years, their taunt against the Labour Ministry, that they wanted another day's pay, and were going too slow, did not come with a good grace from them.

Mr Robinson - At any rate, that could not be spoken of as hasty legislation.

Mr TUDOR - No. Perhaps it would suit the honorable and learned member. The Prime Minister, when "the caucus was working for him, declared it to be all right ; but when it began to work for itself, he complained of it. He and many others approved of it so long as the workers were content to vote for candidates, who would support him; but when they chose- representatives out of the factories and workshops, and even from the doctors' surgeries, the machine was quite a wrong institution.

Mr McLean - Is the honorable member speaking of a sausage machine?

Mr TUDOR - There is no doubt that it would make mince-meat of the honorable member's stock tax. We know what his occupation is, and. that therefore his thoughts naturally run towards meat.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - He was prompted by the Postmaster-General.

Mr TUDOR - The thoughts of the PostmasterGeneral are said to run in the direction of vegetables. We have been blamed for attacking the Government for not putting the High Commissionership Bill on their programme for the present session. I belong to the party in Victoria which opposed the acceptance of the Federal Constitution because it was not democratic enough, and we believed that by waiting we could get a better one. But honorable members opposite, who advocated its acceptance, stated that it would result- in a saving to the States, because, instead of six Agents-General,, there would be one General Agent for the whole Commonwealth. Now, although the States are crying out for economy, and thousands of pounds could be saved by abolishing the offices of the Agents-General, the Government will not move in this matter until they have consulted the Governments of the States, and yet they said this Administration was going to establish responsible government. It has been said that the Watson Administration should not have resigned on the amendment which they declared to be a vital one. But no Government can hold office when the business of Parliament is taken out of its hands. We know- that honorable members opposite went about asking members to vote against the recommittal of clause 48. The honorable member for Barker stated that he was asked if he would oppose the recommittal, and he said " No."

Mr Poynton - That was a fortnight before it was moved.

Mr TUDOR - I was whip to the Watson Ministry, and the whip of the Deakin party came to me one afternoon and stated that the right honorable member for Balaclava would pair in favour of the recommittal, because he had stated to the honorable member for Grey that he would not be a party to such tactics as pi eventing the reconsideration of a proposal. Apparently, however, someone communicated with him by telephone, and told him that the members of the then Opposition were adopting . those tactics to defeat the Government. Therefore, although he had said that he would not be a party to such tactics, he changed his mind, and voted against ' the recommittal. We have been told that if preference were given to unionists, the non-unionists could not obtain work. But preference is necessary to prevent unionists from being dismissed from their employment by emplovers. Many men have already suffered from belonging to trade organizations. The honorable and learned member for Bendigo has stated that the Victorian Factoiies Act has worked well, although it does not provide for preference to unionists; but does he not know that many of the representatives on the Wages Boards have been dismissed for so acting ? The honorable members for Bourke and Melbourne Ports have given many examples of such tyranny, and I myself know that when the representatives of the white workers were selected from each shop to try to frame a price list, one of them, although a skilled worker with whom no fault had ever been found, was dismissed the day after she attended the meeting. So much were her fellow workers incensed by this action of her employer, that, although they had no organization on which to rely for assistance) they left in a body. In the jam trade, I believe, every employé on the board who voted for the fixing of the minimum rate of wage at 30s. for males and 12s. for females was dismissed. The amendment of the honorable and learned member for Corinella provides that unionists shall not obtain preference unless a majority in the trade declare for it. That means that in the cabinet-making business the control of the industry is to be vested in Chinamen. The honorable and learned members for Corinella, Bendigo, and Ballarat, and the honorable member for Laanecoorie, wish to give control of that industry to the Gee Hing and Bo Leong, who caused the riots in Little Bourke-street last week. I wrote to the chief inspector of factories, who has supplied me with figures showing the number of employes engaged in the cabinet-making trade. I find that there are 590 Chinamen and only 188 Europeans employed. Therefore, the majority are Chinamen. These are the men to whom the Minister of Defence would hand over the controlling influence in connexion with the preference provisions of the Concilia tion and Arbitration Bill. Can the honorable and learned member deny that ?

Mr McCay - That is nonsense.

Mr TUDOR - What I state is absolutely true, with regard to the cabinetmaking trade. I was perfectly aware of the position.

Mr McCay - If the honorable member's idea were adopted 188 Chinamen would be able to obtain a preference over 500 white men.

Mr TUDOR - Nothing of the kind. Even the Minister with his skilled legal mind cannot overcome the fact that, so far as his amendment is concerned, it would give the Chinamen in the cabinet-making rrade a preference over the European employes.

Mr McCay - I am surprised that the honorable member should' say so, and more surprised that people with intelligence should cheer him.

Mr TUDOR - I am surprised that the Minister should attempt to wriggle out of the position in which he has placed himself. I have been very much astonished at some of the honorable and learned member's actions, but his action in proposing an amendment which would give Chinamen an absolute preference over Europeans, has surprised me more than anything.

Mr McCay - Nonsense !

Mr Hughes - The Minister wants to place us in the same position as South Africa.

Mr TUDOR - We were told by many honorable members on the Government side of the House, that they were anxious that the Bill should pass.

Mr HUME COOK (BOURKE, VICTORIA) - They meant " pass out."

Mr TUDOR - Exactly. It is very strange that every honorable member who is opposed to the measure should have voted for the amendment of the Minister of Defence. They contended that there was no difference between the honorable and learned member's amendment and that proposed by the leader of the Opposition. They knew full well, however, that the Minister's amendment would cripple the Bill, and that was their sole reason for supporting it. Under the Victorian Factories Act only adults are qualified to vote at elections of representatives upon the Wages Board, but under the amendment adopted, at the instance of the Minister of Defence, it would be necessary for the Court to take cognisance of every operative employed in a particular trade in order to ascertain whether a majority wereinfavour of preference being granted. Ali the employes, whether under or over the age of twenty-one years would have to be reckoned.

Mr Spence - They might not even be employes.

Mr TUDOR - No; they need not even be employes in order to be included in the calculation. In the jam industry a large number of youths and girls are employed, and unless these children - they are little more in many cases - consented to the unionists obtaining preference, the Court would be powerless to grant that concession. This would have the effect of handing over to the employers the absolute control of the industry. In connexion with the election of representatives of the workers upon the Wages Boards, the employes have tried, time after time, to secure the return of nien or women who were favorable to them. They have brought all sorts of influences to bear. They would not however, even be required to do that under the amendment now embodiedin the Bill, because youths and girls would have the same voting power as would the adults engaged in the industry. In the dressmaking trade, for instance, wages are fixed for apprentices and improvers at from 2s. 6d. per week upwards, and a minimum wage is fixed for adults. Every one of the employes, irrespective of age, would have to be included in the calculation when the Court was ascertaining whether a majority of those engaged were in favour of a preference being granted. And yet we are asked why we intend to urge the unions not to register under the Bill. Why should we urge them to do so as long as it contains this obnoxious provision? In trades in which every person employed is qualified to become a member of a union, there will be no difficulty in securing the necessary majority, but in occupations in which large numbers of boys and girls are engaged, we 'should be absolutely helpless.

Mr McCay - The honorable member is wrong again.

Mr TUDOR - On the contrary, I am absolutely right. There is nothing in the amendment, or in any other part of the Bill to indicate that only adults are to be recognised as operatives. The Court would be compelled to take cognizance of every worker in a particular industry, and those who applied for preference would have to secure a majority of all the hands engaged. I admire those honorable mem bers who declare themselves straight-out opponents of the measure. We know exactly how to fight them fairly and honestly. But our worst enemies are those who profess to be friends of the Bill, and yet fry to cripple it. Those honorable members, however, will be reckoned with at no very distant date. In order to show the extent to which boycotting exists, I desire to bring under the notice of honorable members the following report, published in the Melbourne Herald of 13th July-

One of the members of a deputation, which waited on the Premier this morning with a request that the Government should appoint inspectors to supervise scaffolding, asked that his name should not be published.

He made the request, he said, because he was afraid of losing his job. One of the witnesses, who spoke out clearly at the inquest into the Kensington accident, was discharged last Saturday. He asked the reason, and he was told that he was a dangerous man to have on a building, and that it was advisable to "sack" him. If his (the speaker's) name appeared in the papers he would be put down as an agitator, or something like that, and he did not want to be boycotted, as he had a wife and five children. The man he referred to would have hard' work to get a job from any of the big contractors. . .

These are the tactics resorted to by some employers. We are told that the honorable member for Wilmot intends to speak tonight, and that he will be able to settle the whole business in connexion- with this motion. That, however, remains to be seen. The honorable member for Franklin told us that there was no need for an Arbitration Bill in Tasmania, because the workers there were well treated. I have a letter from the secretary of the Workers' Political Association in Hobart which speaks for itself. It reads as follows : -

Hobart, 5thJuly, 1904.

Taken all through wages are lower in all occupations in Tasmania than" in anv other State of the Commonwealth. The very best carpenters, cabinet-makers, and joiners can be secured for 9s. per day - not 20 per cent, of the men are getting that' wage, the great majority get 8s. per day, and building trades have been and are now what is called brisk. First-class smiths arc working for 8s. 6d. a day, and glad to get it. Printers get £2 per week - the Victorian typo, minimum is (I think) £2 12s. And some attempt has been made lately to organize the Tasmanian typos, with £2 5s. as a minimum wage, but the Mercury and other large offices bitterly oppose the union rate. Dozens of carpenters have left for New Zealand during the last two years, and many who never got more than 8s. in Tasmania are earning 11s. in Wellington, and assure us by letter that living is cheaper there than in Hobart. Hobart Corporation labourers get 5s. 3d. a day; that is the maximum. Scores of men, carters, &c, are working ten hours a day for £1 a week, and find themselves. Factory hands (woollen industry), work 11 hours for from 7s. to 18s. a week - few earning more. In the Franklin district, hundreds of full-grown, ablebodied men are working for 10s. and 12s. a week and tucker. Shearing is paid for at the rate of us. and 12s. per 100 (and found). And so on and so on. Wages are lower, and the general condition of the people (vide Benevolent Society statistics) is worse than in any other State. The tramway conductors get 24s. 6d. a week and find themselves, and work on Sunday afternoons.

We were told by the honorable member for Franklin that the workers were perfectly satisfied. If they are, they are content with very poor conditions. Some one should go over to Tasmania and wake them up, and urge them to improve their position. We have been told, time after time, particularly by the honorable and learned member for Ballarat, that the Labour Party have grown at the expense of those nearest to them, and that it was through them his party lost many seats at the last Federal election. From the turn events have taken, we cannot make any distinction between Reidites and Deakinites, because the two parties have joined forces for the purpose of crushing out the Labour Party. I would point out, however, that only one seat previously held by a supporter of the honorable and learned member for Ballarat was lost at the last election. I refer to the Corangamite seat, which was not contested by a labour man. The organization of the Protectionist Party was so incomplete that three Government supporters contested the seat, namely Mr. Wynne, Mr. Dunn, and Mr. Woods. The organization of the Labour Party, which has been the subject, of so much denunciation from honorable members opposite, enables us amongst other things to insure that only one pledged labour man shall contest a given seat. At the last State election in Victoria, the seats gained by the Labour Party were not secured at the expense of the party nearest to them, but in the majority of cases, were won at the expense of representatives of the alleged reform party. Some honorable members have stated that practically the whole of the representatives of Victoria in this Chamber were returned pledged to preserve fiscal peace. I did not give any such promise. I told the electors that in many cases the duties under the Tariff were not sufficiently high. As honorable members know, I fought strongly for higher duties upon a number of articles which are manufactured in the Commonwealth, and I am quite preprepared to do so again. I told my constituents that I intended to fight for higher duties at the first opportunity.' The dividing line in this House is not between protection and free-trade, but between conservatism and radicalism, and we find that all the conservatives are supporting the Government. The honorable member for Parramatta some weeks ago asked us why we continually referred to the honorable member for Kooyong and the honorable member for Flinders as conservatives. He said that they were not conservatives. What did he say with regard to the honorable member for Kooyong about twelve months ago?

Some honorable members believe in the good old Tory principle of disfranchising the electors. I admired the straightout declaration of the hon- orable member for Kooyong, who we know belongs to the good old conservative school.

The honorable member for Kooyong was a conservative then, but now, because he happens to be sitting upon the same side of the House as the honorable member for Parramatta, we are asked to believe that he has changed his opinion. I respect the Conservatives in the Ministerial corner, and I am convinced that it is not they who have changed their opinions, but certain individuals who call themselves Radicals. The honorable member for Flinders has declared that he does not consider it is Socialism for the farmer to ask the Government for increased bounties, or municipal subsidies, or for lower rates for the carriage of his produce. He considers that legislation for the maintenance of a White Australia partakes more of the character . of Socialism. I do not know from what book he gleaned that idea, but I venture to say that no person who has devoted five minutes to a study of Socialism would urge such a view. A member of the Victorian Parliament - Mr. Fairbairn, M.L.A. - recently stated his views upon Socialism to a meeting of ladies. In passing, I may remark that at the present time a number of individuals appear to be extremely anxious to persuade the women of Australia that they can be trusted to look after their interests much better than can the Labour Party. Mr. Fairbairn said -

The ladies could assist materially in combating this description of Socialism bv seeking to so treat their servants as to make them satisfied with their conditions.

Does he mean to suggest that these ladies have not been accustomed to treat their servants well, because that is the only inference which can be drawn from his statement? Later on, he said -

Poverty among the masses was the Labour Party's recruiting ground. Poverty stricken people would grasp at any quackery which proposed a betterment of their conditions. The ladies should strive to improve the conditions of those dependent upon them.

That is exactly what the Labour Party contend. We hold that existing conditions produce poverty, and therefore we strive to better those conditions. Another gentleman - Mr. Thomas Varley - in addressing the same organization, is reported in the Age of the 10th of September, to have said -

With regard to the Socialism the league was fighting, it should remember that State interference was the hall-mark of civilization.

That is the utterance of one who professes to speak against Socialism. Then I find that Mr. Hans Irvine and Mr. S. G. Black, both members of the Victorian Legislative Council, recently addressed the electors of the Nelson Province, and their remarks are reported in the Argus of the 21st of May last. Upon that occasion. Mr. Irvine stated -

Now with even a larger power than formerly, the Council should be able to make itself felt as a strong force in political life, checking rash legislation, opposing reckless borrowing, and, at the same time, with its closer association with the interests of the State, assisting mining, agriculture, viticulture, Stc., in every possible way.

This gentleman is opposed to Socialism, and yet -

He suggested schemes for the advancement of mining, in which he was largely interested, one being that larger batteries should be provided by the Government, and the business managed on commercial lines.

The other candidate at the same meeting alluded to the influence of the Council in checking socialistic aggression. He said -

He was decidedly opposed to the present movement towards Socialism, as it tended to destroy industry and sap the foundations of a man's independence and individualism.

Nothing funnier than the statements of these gentlemen who avow themselves opponents of Socialism can be found in any comic opera. They are typical of the class of individuals whom the Labour Party is fighting to-day. They believe in securing all the socialistic advantages which the State will give them, but are averse to bestowing any concessions upon the workers. The Bulletin put the matter very fairly the other day when it stated -

The squatters and agents are anxious that the farmers should receive bonuses and reduced grain freights, Stc, so that they can have a fatter farmer to rob.

I have taken the trouble to look up some of the interviews with the present Prime Minister, which were published in various newspapers at the time of the six hatters' incident. Upon the 9th of December, 1902, I find the following statement published in the Argus -

Mr. Reidis very much astonished at the action of the Federal authorities. He regards the detention of the men as an outrage. It seems to him as if the Federal Government is quite incapable of discrimination, and wish to push every Act to the limits of absurdity.

Mr Batchelor - He only objected to the Act.

Mr TUDOR - That is what he says today. He now declares that he is sworn to administer the law as he finds it, notwithstanding that he found fault with Sir Edmund Barton for doing exactly the same thing. He does not say that he will withdraw the prosecution against the gentleman who imported the six potters. That individual should certainly be considered as liable to a penalty for an infraction of the law, . as was the gentleman who imported the six hatters. As a matter of fact the latter might have very reasonably pleaded that he was ignorant of the existence of that law ; but no such excuse can be urged to-day. I trust that the Prime Minister will not " wobble " upon this matter,, but will give effect to 'his own views. In another interview which was published, in the Age of the 10th of December, I find the following: -

Mr. Reidstated today that he is more astonished than ever that Sir Edmund Barton has not taken immediate steps to release the men on be. coming fully acquainted with the facts of the case.

What were the facts of the case ? That not until two days after this interview was published, did the importer of the six hatters apply to have them released, upon the ground that they were specially exempted under the Act. Yet to-day we are told that it is quite right that the Act should be enforced. Not long ago, we heard the right honorable gentleman denouncing the Labour Party as the "steerage crowd,' and stigmatizing firemen and sailors in connexion with the White Australia legislation as " the scum of the earth " - as men who were not fit to be treated as human beings. The honorable and learned member for Ballarat must be exceedingly uncomfortable in his present position, when he recalls the many unpleasant things which the Prime Minister has said of him, and especially his statement, so persistently made, that the honorable and learned member had to obey the behests of the Labour Party. We all recollect the outcry which was raised by the leader of the present Government in regard to the new electoral divisions. We remember his charges of gerrymandering, and his dramatic action in resigning his position as a protest against the proposal of the Barton Government. He has stated that he intends to administer the law . as he finds it. Does he propose to appoint Commissions to divide New South Wales and Victoria into new electorates, so that an elector in Yarra or Kooyong may exercise as much political power as an elector in Wimmera or Gippsland? I think that he should; but I do not think he will find a strong supporter of such a proposal in the Minister of Defence, or in the honorable member for Echuca.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - All the honorable member's party does' not.

Mr TUDOR - I am speaking for myself. Surely the honorable member does not desire to speak for the whole of the party with which he is associated. The honorable member was absent . from the Chamber just now when I referred to the fact that he has repudiated the idea that the honorable member for Kooyong is a conservative.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I never made any such statement.

Mr TUDOR - Apart from the many harsh statements which the Prime Minister uttered in regard to the gerrymandering tactics of the Barton Government, the. honorable member for Parramatta also made some very severe statements.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I am not prepared to take a word of them back.

Mr TUDOR - The party opposite must be a very happy family. I wonder how the Prime Minister would get on with the honorable member for Mernda in discussing the question of starch. The present Postmaster-General had something to say upon that subject upon a memorable occasion. In speaking of the honorable member for Mernda, he said -

The honorable member has accumulated wealth, in the firm which he represents, by extorting higher rates under this iniquitous system of protection than he had any right to expect from consumers.

He declared that the whole of the members of the Barton Administration were plunderers - " robbers " they were called.

Then the Minister of Home Affairs designated the Deakinites " political pirates." Many honorable members opposite have objected to the statements made by the honorable and learned member for Corio in regard to the administration of the finances of New South Wales by the leader of the present Government. I find that the honorable member for Echuca, who is one of the best supporters of that Government, said during the last no-condence debate -

The object of the Argus has been for years past to get a free-trade Premier, and to see a free-trade policy adopted in Victoria. It wanted to instal the leader of the Opposition as Prime Minister of Australia. If that were done, the Argus would be happy. It has not scrupled to adopt any means, no matter how deceitful or underhand, to bring about that result. For my own part, I should look with great consternation upon the prospect of that gentleman occupying the position of Prime Minister of this Commonwealth.

The honorable member was then criticising the right honorable gentleman, whom he now follows as leader, and he went on to say -

We can judge of men only from what they have done in the past, and surely the career of the leader of the Opposition as Premier and Treasurer of New South" Wales for four or five years was not of such a character as to warrant Parliament in placing this enormous Country under his charge for any length of time. We have the authority of the gentlemen, who are now the right honorable member's colleagues, as to his conduct of the finances of New South Wales. I am not one of those who would look up old Hansards in order to condemn a man, but they contain speeches prolific in condemnation of the financial reputation of the right honorable member. A committee of outside accountants was appointed by Parliament to consider his balancesheets, and they brought up a condemnatory report, showing how he had turned deficits into surpluses.

There are many other honorable members who are in a similar position to that occupied' by the honorable member for Echuca. The honorable member for Laanecoorie took a great deal of ' trouble the other night to show how I and other members of the Labour Party had voted on particular proposals, but he did not go to the trouble of giving us similar information in regard to supporters of the present Government - such as the honorable member for Wimmera - who were returned as protectionists, and time after time deserted that cause in critical divisions. The honorable member for Laanecoorie, in referring to the fact that the honorable member for Kooyong and the honorable member for the Grampians left their party when the present Prime Minister moved his no-confidence motion three years ago, said -

I desire to express my sincere and deep regret that they should have considered it necessary to take that step. All of them, I know, are wellwishers to the Commonwealth, and were ardent workers on behalf of the Constitution Bill when it was before the people. I do not regret the fact that they have left us - because I know that in spirit, at any rate, and in very many votes, they will be with us - so much as I fear the result of their association with the conservative side of the House. While they were on the more liberal side, while they were members of the more democratic portion of the House, we felt that, at any rate, if there were a change, it would always be a change for the better. But I am fearful lest in their new environment they may find themselves losing that amount of grace which they obtained during the time they were with us.

In these terms the honorable member for Laanecoorie expressed his regret that the honorable member for Kooyong and the honorable member for the Grampians had gone over to the conservative side of the House. I am satisfied, however, that if those honorable members have changed their position, the honorable member for Laanecoorie has joined them. One other honorable member has acknowledged the present Prime Minister as his leader. I refer to the honorable and learned member for Bendigo, who, in an interview, reported in the Bendigo Advertiser of the 15th August, the day after the division was taken which turned out the Watson Government, said -

The issue on which the Labour Party has been defeated is an amendment to the 48th clause in the Arbitration Bill. The time has passed for rail sitting and trimming. There is no middle course available ; a public man must be for or against the Labour Party as a political organization. I am not a member of that party, nor do I seek to become one.

The honorable and learned member for Bendigo has a perfect light to take the position that there is room for only two parties in politics. But when we contrast those remarks with the speech he made the other night, we find that on the latter occasion he said that the Deakin party should have maintained its integrity, so that it could hold the position of a third party. The honorable and learned member evidently spoke one way at Bendigo and another way in the House, when he practically expressed himself as anxious that there should be three parties. The honorable and learned member states in that interview that the Watson Government were defeated on an amendment. That, however, is not the fact, be- cause the Watson Government were defeated on a motion which had the effect of , pre venting an amendment being discussed. The Opposition on that occasion took the business out of the hands of the Government, and, no doubt, they had a perfect right to do so if they believed they were in. a majority. But members who believed in the gag so voted that the amendment could not be considered, and they ought to have come out in a fair and square way and expressed their opinion. They should have openly declared that further discussion would throw some light on the matter, and that, as they were anxious to remain in darkness, they refused to allow the clause to be recommitted.

Mr Kelly - How many members of the Labour Party were not able to speak on the motion for a recommittal ?

Mr TUDOR - I do not know.

Mr Kelly - There were verv few.

Mr TUDOR - That does no't alter the facts. During the absence of the honorable member for Wentworth I pointed out that the real effects of the amendment then proposed had not been considered by those who voted for it. If that amendment finds a place in the Bill, it will give every young person in any trade or calling as much power as is given to the adults. In many trades and industries, the whole of the power will thus be handed over to workers under twenty-one years of age. That is what the honorable and learned member for Bendigo voted for, as well as voting that Chinamen should have preference in the cabinet-making trade; and in another press interview, a few days after the one quoted, he said -

I think we have had enough talk about arbitra-tion for a while. We want not only fiscal peace, but industrial peace. The Labour Party had a fairly good innings at arbitration, and it is time to put a stop to the incessant efforts to promote industrial war and the division of the country into two hostile camps.

Sir John Quick - I say that again.

Mr TUDOR - Does the honorable and learned member mean that the discussion of the Arbitration Bill divides the country, or that the passage of the Bill would divide the country into hostile camps?

Sir John Quick - The extreme provisions of the Bill.

Mr TUDOR - If the honorable and learned member believed that the passage of the Bill would divide the country into two hostile camps, he ought to have voted against, and not pretended to be a friend of legislation of the kind, and at the same time express other views in newspaper interviews. He knows full well that his vote has placed in the Bill a provision which will make it absolutely unworkable. I can admire honorable members who are opposed to the Bill, and who stated their intention to vote against it, even if a division had been taken on the second reading.

Sir John Quick - I do not believe in compulsory unionism, but in voluntary unionism.

Mr TUDOR - The honorable and learned member has a perfect right to that opinion, but there is nothing in the interview about compulsory as against voluntary unionism.

Sir John Quick - That is the main issue.

Mr TUDOR - I have read the whole of the interview, and I presume that the honorable and learned member was correctly reported in the Bendigo newspaper.

Sir John Quick - That was the only question before us.

Mr TUDOR - If the honorable member believed that the discussion of arbitration, or the passage of the Bill, will divide the country into two hostile camps,

I13 ought to have voted against the measure.

Sir John Quick - Oh, no !

Mr TUDOR - When we had discussed the Tariff Bill for ten months without finally settling anything, the honorable and learned member would have been equally justified in taking the same stand that he did in that interview in regard to arbitration. Although in the interview of the 15th August he expressed the opinion that the time' had arrived when Parliament should be divided into the Labour Party and those opposed to the Labour Party, he said in a subsequent interview that he could not support the present motion. Of course, the honorable and learned member has a perfect right to take that stand ; but we must look at the reason he gave. He said that he hoped that by not supporting the motion he could assist in bringing about the reunion of the old Deakin Party - in other words, a third party. I should' like to know exactly where the honorable and learned member stands, because his attitude at present appears to be worthy of his present leader, the grand exemplar of the " Yes-No " policy in Australia. On a subsequent occasion the honorable and learned member, in making a personal explanation, I believe, said that he was no party to the coalition ; and some honorable members on the other side say the saime. If the protec tionists did not agree to the present coalition, they must admit that the Free-trade Party have absolutely swallowed them. The specific proposals prepared by the honorable and learned member for Ballarat and the present Prime Minister were discussed in my own electorate ; and I sincerely hope my electorate will be able to get over the fact. I know that a coalition platform was laid down.

Mr Batchelor -In a vault?

Mr TUDOR - I do not know. At any rate, the Labour Party do not meet in vaults; their meetings are open to every member of the party - any person who desires to join the party may attend, on complying with the conditions laid down in the constitution of the Labour Party. I have spoken at greater length than I intended ; indeed, I do not think that I should have' addressed the House at all, had it not been for the denial which the honorable and learned member for Wannon attempted to make in regard to the statement by Mr. Walpole. It will be admitted that I treated the honorable member fairly,, inasmuch as I got an accurate copy of the remarks from the man who reported the meeting. The persons who are supporting the present coalition Government are those who go about the country saying that for the workers marriage is a luxury ; and all who subscribe to the Victorian Employers' Federation are anxious to keep Mr. Walpole in his present position.

Mr Johnson - Does the honorable member wish to insinuate that Mr. Walpole is officially connected with this party?

Mr TUDOR - I believe that tlie present Prime Minister appeared on many platforms with Mr. Walpole, while the Royal Agricultural Show was being . held in Melbourne ; and we are told that we may judge men by the company they keep. If the Prime Minister and the Minister of Trade and Customs do not believe in the doctrine advocated by' Mr. Walpole they are at liberty to give a denial in this House.

Mr McLean - Do the members of any party in this House brand themselves as employers' representatives ?

Mr TUDOR - There is no necessity for any " brand " ; a blind man could pick them out.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I suppose we can smell them ?

Mr TUDOR - I do not know anything as to that. Perhaps the honorable member's sense of smell is keen enough to enable him to discriminate, and there are some of the Employers' Federation who are pretty " strong." Fortunately for myself, the employers for whom I have worked are a little better. I sincerely trust that whether the motion is carried or not - and we may learn to-night from the honorable member for Wilmot what is to be its fate - the people of Australia will have an opportunity to express their opinion about honorable members who have " gone "back " on their election pledges, and are now supporting the present Government.

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