Labour Notes. I SELF-GOVERNMENT-IN CEYLON. I From Ceylon comes a demand for consstitu- I tional reforms and the vigorous development of self-governing institutions, with a view to the ?aH?ttion of responsible government under the ?i?S the British throne." Ceylon has been hitherto governed as a Crown Colony, and in the early part of the war, governed very badly. There have been several black spots in the ad- ministration of the British Empire, and the panic-stricken ferocity with which the Sinhalese riots of 1915 was suppressed (as exposed in the official enquiry appointed by Sir John Anderson) must rank along with the atrocities of Sir Eyre (JoDte in Jamaica and the rubber plantations of Putumayo. Botli because self-government is a good thing in itself and because Crown Colony government in Ceylon has been so lamentable a failure, the grant of a constitution cannot lie much longer delayed. EARMERS AND THE MINIMUM. I Two amusing instances of naivete on thepart "of farmers are to be found in the pages of the Wages Board Gazette." The first comes from Buckinghamshire, where in support of a demand that the present minimum wage of 30/: should be reconsidered, a. carefully-prepared budget was submitted showing that for a man and his wife and three children a minimum rate of 35!- was the absolutely lowest rate which would be termed i living wage. Farmer representatives then pointed out that with the rate at 30/ as at present, good farmers, as a matter of fact, had 37/- or 40/- overtime-, running into 10 to 15 hours per week, and that the real difficulty arose from the action of bad farmers, who would not allow their men to work overtime, and thus kept their wages down to the bare minimum. The 'Committee then adjourned itself for the purpose -of liriding out what wages farmers did actually pay their men. We wonder what is the Labour opinion of the policy of fixing a minimum so low that the worker has to depend on overtime to give him a living wage. In Staffordshire, again, the Wages Committee met to consider the raising of the minimum. But the farmers protested that it was ungrate- ful of the Staffordshire labourers to want more money so soon after a minimum wage had been fixed. Apparently they raised no objection to the contention that the actual minimum was in- adequate they merely demanded that the Gov- ernment should pay them higher pripes for their products. An amendment was then carried by a. majority of two votes that the farmers can- not consider and further advances in wages until they have some guarantee a.s to the future prices 'of farm produce." ft is a well-known fact that farmers all over the country have for some time been demanding a ri se in the guaranteed prices of corn and oats and it is probable that this Staffordshire move may be followed by others. Labour men should be on their guard. CONSUMERS' COUNCIL FOR ALL I DEPARTMENTS. The following resolution, which was carried at the eighth Labour Conference at the Ministry of Food, on the motion of Mr. Will Godfrey, of the London Labour Party, has received very little attention in the Press:— With the desirable object of enabling the workers of London aiid the country to have their conditions made known, their require- ments considered, and their just demands brought before the Government, this Confer- ence considers that the democratic example set by the Ministry of Food. in convening periodic Labour Conferences in London, and, at the suggestion of this conference, through- out the country should be continued and ex- tended to embrace the work of other depart- ments, so that all the. conditions of the workers' lives may reteive adequate atten- tion." The Government might do much worse than consider this suggestion, or a suggestion for Consumers' Councils to be attached to each con- trolling Government department (if any control- ling Government Department is still to exist). We especially recommend it to the Ministry of Supply. INDIA. I The Montagu-Chelmsford Report on Indian Reforms, moderate though it is considered to be by many sections of Indian opinion, is meeting with considerable opposition amongst the English garrison. In the Madras Presidency an Indian Civil Service Association has been formed to promote the interests of the service. A memorial has been drawn up by them criticising the Mon- tague-Chelmsford scheme, and in it there occurs the phrase, that such of us are not prepared to make ourselves pawns in what is termed in the report, one of the greatest political ex- periments in the world's etc." This sounds very like a threat of, obstruction on the ii( i s vei, .v I t t li re, part of the Anglo-Indian Civil Servants. The unfortunate tiling is that obstruction from this quarter may be only too effectual. For Parlia- ment (which is the body ultimately responsible for the government of India) has hitherto shown Jittle enough interest in the subject, and the absence of public interest has been the oppor- tunity of the reactionaries. COST OF LIVINC ACAIN. I The Committee on Farming and Cost of Living, says Sir Henry Row, has made further progress with its Report, and hopes to be in a position to present it in February. We are anxi- ously awaiting this Report, in view of the claims for increased remuneration recently put forward by fanners in many counties; and, remembering our disappointment on reading the Report of the Increase in Cost of Living to the Working Classes, we hope the Labour members on this Committee are awake. In particular, we hope they will remember that through the scarcity of a particular commodity means that the worker cannot obtain it and therefore goes without, it does not follow that the demand for that commo- dity has ceased to exist. For if the price of .eggs has doubled, and you can only afford to buy one egg whore two were bought before, is it necessarily correct to say that your cost of living has not risen at all? Expenditure may not have risen but the standard of life has gone down, and no amount of juggling with figures by economic experts will prove that it has not. This Report, if it is a bad Report, may be quoted against the workers when they apply for an increase in jvages—'the previous Report has already been so quoted in at least one case—and it is the duty of the Labour members of the Committee to see that the Report when produced is not of such a kind as will put weapons in the employers' hands. If they fail to move the main Committee, they can at least put in a Minority Report, which will expose the other. SMALL NATIONALITIES. Yet another of the peoples within the British Empire is demanding independence. In the South African Union the causes which led to the rebellion in the early part of the war are not forgotten, though they have been consistently ignored in this country. There was therefore a certain element of surprise in the news that a I Nationalist Conference was held this month in Bloomfontein, and that the independence of South Africa was they-ein demanded. As has happened in Ireland, delegates were appointed to attend the Paris Peace Conference. In the case of the Orange Free State" Mr. Hertzog and General De Wet were appointed, while the Transvaal Congress also nominated two dele- gates. AN INDIAN TONYPANDY. I One hundred thousand Bombay cotton opera- tives are on strike for an increased war bonus. As is well-known, the wages and conditions of these Indian mills are at somewhat the same level as Lancashire a hundred years ago. It is to the interests of cotton operatives in this coun- try that their fellow-workers in India should have their standard of living improved and their hours of labour reduced.. It was to have been hoped that the Viceroy would adopt the same view. Unfortunately, the Government of India has hitherto shown itself only too amenable to' pressure from these same textile magnates who are now refusing an increased wage to the workers. In view of this there is a sinister meaning in the telegram which says that the Bombay police have held a conference on the question of the strike with the ootton masters. A later telegram puts the matter in a worse light. It appears that as a number of pickets refused to disperse when ordered to do so by the Police Commissioners, rifle tiro was opened on the crowd from an armoured car. This seems to indicate that the methods of industrialist re- pression abandoned long ago in this country are now being employed in the most flagrant man- ner in our Indian dependency. THE BLESSED LAND OF MESOPOTAMIA. Coincidences, we know, will always happen. Yet surely there lS something more than coinci- dence in the appearance in the Board of Trade Journal" of a very eloquent article on the glories of Mesopotamia, just before it was re- ported that Great Britain was to hold Mesopo- tamia in her beneficent protection" after peace was signed. On the political morality of the whole proceeding we make no comment; but we would suggest for the careful consideration of Labour the paragraph which descirbes the Arab as labour-power. "There is no unwilling- ness on the part of Arabs to work, if considera- tion is shown for his habits"; and. he is de- scribed as being cheerful, uncomplaining, will- ing, and easy to handle. If this is so, the work- ing of this cheerful, uncomplaining, and willing creature by capitalists from other countries should be very carefully watched. Wo do not want a second Putumayo, and we hope that the International Labour Charter will contain good provisions for the protection of native labour. WHAT ARE THE RUSSIAN GOVERNMENTS? In view of the Allied Peace Conference deci- sion to invite delegates from the Russian Gov- ernments to a meeting in the Sea of Marmora it is interesting to review exactly the position. The governments or parties within the boun- daries of the old Russian Empire are now rough- ly as follows:— Russian Socialist Federal Soviet Republic.- Mainly Bolshevik. With headquarters at Mos- cow and Petrograd, it controls a.t least thrice as large a population as any other Government. Ukraine Government.—Now under Potlyura, previously under Skoropadski. The Soviet or- ganisation appears to be making headway here. On the other hand, in the South of the Ukraine, some Black Sea ports are reported to be held by French Senegalese. POland,-Xow under M. Paderewski. who has hitherto been understood to belong to the Anti- Semitic party of M. Dmowski, and General Pil- sudski, who has fought against the Germans and belongs to the Radical left. Ormsk Government (Siberia).—This is the most important of the party of Belshevik gov- ernments, and it regards itself as the inheritor of the authority of the Provisional Government of 1917 confirmed by what is called the Whole- People's Assembly, which met at Cfa in Septera- her of last year, consisting of a group of mem- bers elected to the Constituent Assembly and plenipotentiary members of the provisional gov- ernments in Siberia, in the Ural territory, the several Cossack governments, and numerous other provisional governmental authorities in Inner Russia and Siberia, as well as of the pro- visional government of Esthonia and representa- tives of the Union of Zomstva; along with repre- sentati ves of political organisations and parties, including the Socialist Revolutionares, the Men- shevik Section of the Social Democratic Party, the Socialist Labour Party, the Constitutional- Democrats, and others. From this assembly supreme authority over all the territory of the Russian State was transferred to a Provisional Government consisting of five persons: Avkshen- tyef. Astrov, Y old yrof, Vologodsky, and Ohi- kovsky. The first-named acts as President of the Provisional Russian Government, claiming authority over the whole of Russia's territory. In addition, there are several separate govern- ments in portions of Russia where the Entente Forek,s.Ltet. as a counterbalancing factor to the influence of the Soviets. These are Vladivostock, Archangel, Baku region, Esthonia, Odessa re- gion, and amongst the various smal nationali- ties of the Baltic Coast.
Electric Theatre I Next week's programmes at the Electric Theatre are two of those that cause those of us who keep dairies to make a red-letter impera- tive engagement entry attend Electric on two pages. There are Chaplin comedies both ends: "Charlie the Fireman, that cream of burlesques from Monday to Wednesday, and that triumph of single-man comedies, One a.m. for the ultimate half. I do not know of anyone who has attempted the task of filling so many thousand feet as this alone and I am certain that none could do it so well as the inimitable Charlie. Another big feature of the Monday-to- Wednesday programme is another Fox photo- play, giving us the clever work of Gladys Brock- well, The Moral Law." Here the versatile American plays the part of twin sisters and the passage in which the two sisters kiss is perfect. Bertram Gransby is again the villain, and Colin Chase the hero, Count Bernstorff's Secrets," the new spy serial that opened last week, should be a big draw also after that exciting opening. From Thursday the top-liner is Margaret May's world-famed classic "Polly of the Circus" visualised. The leadiug role falls to Mae Marsh, of Birth of a Nation fame. It is a play of fauie. It is a play of thrills and sensations and beautiful pathetic touches that will sure to attract. The Ro- mance of Olive is also here in a grand instal- ment. Lest we Forget" that is topping the current week's final progrgamme is one of the finest spectacular pictures I have ever seen. Few will ever forget the mimetic sinking of the Liis-itania here portrayed. Charlie is here also in the Floorwalker," and there is an excellent short drama The Picture Writer," as well as a thrilling chapter from the "Romance of Olive.
THE RINK MEETINCS. TO TIIE EDITOR. Deal' Sir,-I hope you will permit me to an- swer Mr. Ed. Shadbolt on the above topic. I promise you it will be my last letter on the sub- ject, as you cannot spare much of your valuable space. I must say I feel disappointed with Mr. Shadbolt\s letter. He answered my letter in a snappy, sneering way. We I.L.P.ers always as- sert that our methods of debate are cleaner than our Tory-Liberal opponents. According to Mr. Shadbolt he only wants to cater for one class of people. We must always bear in mind that there are a class of people to be catered for who have come midway to meet us. Hundreds of people will attend a meeting if they think that the time of its starting and finishing suits them. Mr. Shadbolt sneers at what he calls the drone of a speaker, and the drab surroundings of a chapel." He is also amused at their golden words." I always thought that LL.P. members respected other people's opinions. It is evident Mr. Shadbolt doesn't. 1 admit we have pearls of wisdom at the Rink meetings, but whether Mr. Shadbolt admits it or not, we also have pearls of wisdom at some of our chapels. We also hear golden words there, and every minister doesn't speak with a drone. The Sunday before election day, a Dowlaas minister delivered a wonderful fight- ing speech or sermon on behalf of Labour. Were the surroundings of that cliaped of a drab colour? That sermon was the talk of the town before and after the election. Mr. Shadbolt also mentions our comrades who walk from Aber- dare, Bargoed, Bedlinog. I admit that their sacrifice is a great one, but does that justify a 9 1 _ro me it i's evi- late start for our meetings? To me it is evi- dent that they do not desire to go to chapel or church. I may be wrong, but I believe the down train from Merthyr leaves on Sunday afternoons somewhere in the region of 4.30 p.m. I know some Bedlinog chaps who went out last Sunday before Morgan Jones finished III s wonderfu speech. At least 150 went out past the litera- ture stall before Morgan finished. We all know that a speaker will curtail his speech if he sees that a procession keeps marching out under his very nose. Would Mr. Shadbolt like it ? I should think not. People corning up the valley for our Sunday meetings like to have a ride home if possible. We are not living in the wilds, 50 miles from everywhere, and do not see the need of going without tea. I would gladly do so if there was any need for it. If the Merthyr I.L.P. will persist in starting their meetings at 3.15, why not advertise them at 3.15, and not 2.45 prompt ? Why not print the truth ? Whether Mr. Shadbolt likes it or not people will persist in going to chapel. Thank goodness we have be- lievers a.s well as non-believers in Christ. Still holding that T am an enthusiast.—I remain. yours respectfully, B. W.
THE BOCEY OF BOLSHEVISM. TO THE EDITOR. Dear Comrade,—Fred Sylvester's letter in last week's issue has struck the right note. Mr. Ed- ward Gill and his attitude on this question is cer- tainly not an isolated instance among Labour leaders." The recent election has given us ample proof of that. Up and down the country we had Labour candidates unctuously declaring that they were not Bolshevists and that it was a libel and a slander to describe them as such, and in this they were fully supported by the majority of local parish pump Labour men of the semi-illiterate type, who wanted to see "their man" in, no matter how dishonest the means employed. The acute observer of events during the last eighteen months remembers how the "puny Robespierre" Kerensky was lauded to the skies by most of the Labour leaders, and how, when the Russian proletariat sent him and the political institutions which he represented. into limbo, there was a deadly silence on the part of the Official Labour Movement in this country until, quite recently, when what pronouncements w e have had has been a kind of damning with n io r(--i,gon for t is 1*' faint praise. The reason for this is not far to seek. The Russian Bolshevists have brought Communism within the realm of accomplished facts and by so doing have swept away the poli- tical trickeries of the modern capitalist State, and let us be honest and not blink the fact- it is on those very political trickeries that your Labour politician, as well as every other politi- CIan thrives, and therefore to destroy those in- stitutions would be cutting the ground from be- neath their feet. One recognises the truth of the saying of those two courageous Communists, Eden and Cedar Paul, in the Plebs" of some months ago, that the average Labour leader. after declaiming "vehemently and passionately" against the present system at a crowded public meeting, went home and before turning in prayed to the good God that it would outlast their life, as they were getting such a comfortable time out of it.—Yours fraternally, SAM MAIN WARING. 100 Gnoll Park Road, Neath.
I EX-TSARIS FATE." I I TO THE EDITOR. I Sir,—Such is the heading of At article in "Th Daily News" to-day (Jan. 27), and I ca.nnot re- sist the temptation to make a few comments upon it—with your permission. It is designed to create a deep feeling of sympathy with the Rus- sian royal family, but more perhaps to excite a feeling of revenge and hatred against the Gov- ernment of the Soviet. It purports to be a true story of the tragic end of the Tsar and his family, told by Count Tolstoy—presumably the little son of a great father—the Great Writer Tolstoy. But is it t,rue? We doubt it. We have a right to doubt. it. In fact, in view of the thousand lies about doings in Russia imported to England by the yellow press during the last few months, we have almost the right to give it a flat denial. But even if it be true-in all its horrible de- tails: the "terrible scene," the shooting "one after the other," and finally the cremation of their bodies" yet there is nothing to be really surprised at, when we review the sufferings of the Russian people, for many years, under the late Tsar's regime. There is. perhaps, a law of retaliation down deeper in the nature of things than our philosophy has yet dreamed of. How many hundreds of the peoples of Great Rus- sia" have the Tsar and his cliques banished from their homes, others fleeing in terror into all corners of the earth? How many assassin- ated, murdered, executed? And, it may be truly said, as history has already shown, num- bering among them hundreds of the greatest heroes the world has ever seen. Why, do we not hear thousands of our own civilised people of Great Britain talking gliblv of hanging the Kaiser," and they have yet to prove which of the two cousins is the greatest murderer—if in- deed either of them was guilty—but rather the great capitalist ring around them. 'We are glad' to see signs of a general awakening of the Prole- tariat to the fact that "Capitalism" is THE enemy of all peoples. We also feel grateful to the Bolsheviks for their New Revolutionary Programme for war against Capital. They have taught us 'many lessons in Democracy before— but this last lesson promises to be the greatest of all. Destroy Capitalism first, and all other social rights will follow But how comes it that. the "yellow press" is so continuously blatant over the supposed atrocities committed by the Bolsheviks and so silent over the atrocities com- mitted upon them ? How Pharisaically eloquent was the Prince Lvoff in Pans last week, remind- ing the public of the murders committed by the Bolsheviks? Did he utterly forget the murders committed by his own class upon the people ? If the Tsar's Government has the right to banish, assassinate and murder, has not the Soviet Gov. ernment the right also? It is only a. matter of which happens to be the stronger at the time. But strong or weak we do not admit the right of either to do these ghastl. things. Yet we can imagine occasions, in revolutionary times, especially, when it is very difficult to govern without committing some blunders and crimes. We know now that the greatest crimes of the Bolsheviks were done ill self-defence—after the Allied interference. We do not know yet why is tlie "yellow press" so silent over the murder of Dr. Liebkneeht and Rosa Luxembourg. If silobr, assert their right to murder the people, then let the people hasten to teach-them better manners D. D. WALTERS. Woodlallds, Xew-Castle-Emlyn. i
IWARE CAPITALI-SM. TO T IE EDITOR. kn"? I he glory of the Labour Movement has from its very beginning lain ip its sterling inde- pendence, its refusal to accept any form of patronage, its abhorrence of all that savours of toadism. So long as thi.s spirit is kept alive. Labour will be able to stand preet. hold its head up proudly and defiantly, and look the world in the fact. But if it sacrifices the smallest degree of patronage, allows itself to be influenced by the capitalist who poses as a supporter of those gieat principles and ideals for which Labour stands, the success of the Movement will be jeopardised and Labour will be laying itself open to the setting in of the dry-rot that has destroyed other great movements and political parties. THE NEW CONSTITUTION. Under the new constitution people are ad- mitted into the Labour Party to whom its doors were just closed under the old constitution. The admission of the brain-worker is a distinct step forward it helps to strengthen and solidify the laity, it gives it a new power and an increased ltahty, but the admission of tlie Capitalist un- der the guise of a worker is almost certain sooner or later to lead to disaster. Light can novei co-exist with darkness night can never co-exist with day; black can never co-exist with %Iilte. Whatever camouflage may be introduced one fact, incontrovertible, undenia ble, cannot be overlooked. Capital and Labour are diametri- cally opposed the one to the other, and their in- terests can never blend any more than oil and water can mix. While in no sense seeking to minimise the value to the Labour Party accruing from the ad- mission of men of culture and education and re- finement, and while recognising to the full the necessity of bringing into the movement every force that will help strengthen it and assist it to the attainment of its great ideals, a word of grave warning has become necessary, and the necessity fully justifies its utterance. The en- trance to the ranks of the Party must be so narrowed as to permit the admission of men who are out to buy "the movement" and to exploit it tor their own purposes. Men who, because they are prepared to put. a few hundreds or a few thousands into the coffers of the party claim the right to dictate its policy—and polity. NO COMPROMISE. I Many men and women have put their all into I the Labour Movement; they have given tinle, money, strength, nervous energy, and they have given it freely, ungrudgingly, unconditionally, they have given it because the principles, aims, and ideals of Labour were to them a religion. But these men and women have never sought to dictate the particular lines upon which the w oi k of the movement should be earned oil, ex- cept in the constitutional way and by the usual recognised methods. The future of the Party is destined to become a power in national affairs. But there must be no compromise with Capital, no lowering of ideals, no sacrifice of principles. The responsi- bility resting upon the party leaders is colossal, it is for them to recognise it, and to devise such means as shall keep the party "clean," and ab- solutely independent. • L. BROWNING DAVIES. I
A QUERY TO ECONOMISTS. I Dear Sii, Having the misfortune to be placed in an environment where economic theories (of a sort) are the order of the day, I should be pleased it you would publish the following ques- tions, with a view to their being answered, and the "burning problems" solved:— (1) Is music (abstract), such as violin play- ing, etc., a commodity? (2) Does a rise in wages mean a decrease in profits, also does the rise place the worker in a better position socially? Trusting some comrade will endeavour to clear the fog,Yours, etc., It TROT."
The Theatre Royal Armitage and Leigh's clever company is doing excellent business at the Theatre Royal this week. It was bound to do, for its reputation during years of continuous touring has been un- failingly high. Moreover, it was an inspiration to start out the week with The Barrier," that great drama of Rex Beach's, in which Mr. Clay- ton, whom I have always regarded as the com- pany's best possession, plays the heaviest part in his own great style. Mr. Clayton's greatest gift is the clear diction of his melodious voice, perfectly modulated as a trained elocutionist only can modulate. And here I would enter my one word of criticism. The casting of Armitage in Hector's old part of Lieut. Burrell, has un- fortunately led to an imitation of Hector's ex- plosive vocalism, and not a conspicuously suc- cessful one. If Clayton had been chosen as a model instead it would have been to the good. One of the best pieces of acting is that of Arthur Leigh as Runnion, the half-breed. Winifred Willard, who has secured the principal lady's part in succession to Mrs. Hector is an improve- ment even on that splendid actress. To-night (Friday) tlie company handle Passers By," a celebrated comedy which they resurrect again on Tuesday of next week, and on Saturday The Lion and the Mouse" is to be played. On Wednesday and Thursday next week that favourite morality play" The Hypo- crites is announced, and the gem of the re- pertory is to run Monday, Friday and Saturday in Lucky Durham."
[Merhhyr Trades & Labour Council. ¡ TH E PEACE CELEBRATION DISCUSSION. The annual meeting of the Merthyr Trades and Labour Council last Thursday had to record an- other year of splendid progress financially and numerically, and all who know the movement locally admit that those are but the outward ex- pressions of a splendid spirit of unity that is permeating the- trades union movement in the town. A letter from Ivor H. Thomas as the South Wales representative of the Council for Civil Liberties asking for the observation of Anti- (inscription Sunday was met by the resolution to ask the I.L.P. to allow the Council to share its platform at the Rink that day when Eddy Edwards will be the speaker. An invitation was received in the name of the Mayor asking the Council to appoint delegates to attend a preliminary Conference to devise ways of celebrating peace. Mr. J. E. Jones moved representa tion. LABOUR CROUPS OPINION. Councillor Francis said that the Labour Group on the Town Council had discussed the matter and they felt strongly that the workers ought to hold their own conference to devise ways of cele- brating peace in a manner conformable with the workers' view-point. The workers might depend upon it that the proposal was to celebrate all those things for which Labour emphatically did not staml-it was to be an Imperialistic celebra- tion. Mr. T. J. Evans said the point to be kept in mind was the worthiness of the object. It was eminently a worthy object. For a very long time Labour had been demanding peace, and now that it had come we ought to raise our voice in joy over it. He did not agree with the teaching now current that Labour should put itself into isolation—splendid isolation it migln, be called, though lie did not fe-d that it was such. Ho felt that we as a Labour movement ought to get in touch with every movement, in the town. Wo w ere going to do ourselves injury by cutting our- selves adrift and placing ourselves in a position of superiority. There was a right way and a wrong way of celebrating peace, and our point of view ought to be put. We did not need to co-operate if the wrong way was chosen. WAIT AND SEE." I MI'. E. Shadbolt thought that it would be ad- visable to wait until the terms of pea?e were published before taking action. If the terms were in the interests of humanitv the celebra- tion was certain, if not the Trades 'Council would bo out of order in any such celebration. Councillor I rancis declared that there wasilt) affinity between the working-class movement and the proposers of this celebration. If delgeates were to so. then discuss the issue and instruct them. Air. Barr submitted that since the invitation was from the Mayor, and the affair a concern of the town the only course to be adopted was that of representation. We could at the Conference lay down the general lines upon which we would co-operate. If we were a body open to enter into communal life at all we could not ignore th(i, invitation. It was decide! t-4) send t.i&o delegates—Messrs. 1. J. Evans and Hugh Williams, who were in- structed. to press that the first conference should he in no way commita.l—rather that it should be in the nature of a preliminary talk over. WITH WILSON. A resolution was adopted "That this Council endorses President Wilson's policy of a League, of Peoples, regards the Fourteen Points as the ilJdispensible basis of a Democratic peace, and assures him of its unfaltering support in his op- position to a. militarist and "Imperialist settle- ment and in his fight for a permanent peace that shall embody the principles of justice." Mr. 1. J. Evans, treasurer, presented his ifnan- cial report showing considerable and steady progress financially and in representation, and Mr. W. Harris (secretary) reported on the aoti- vities of the year. Mr. Hugh Williams ( the retiring president) i hen thanked the members for their hearty co- operation in the work of a crowds! ve-ii- and the support accorded him in the occupancy of the chair. But the work we have done is as nothing to the work ahead. The future is bristling with difficulties for the Labour Move- ment, and I hope, and 1 know, that you will give the new President the same hearty co-operation that you have always accorded to me." (Cheers.) Mr. John Adkins (the new President) then took the chair, and returning thanks for his elec- tion referred to the position conferred upon him as one of the greatest honours that could be be- stowed upon anyone connected with the Labour Movement.. The Merthyr Trades Council hao done great work in the past, and was goiusr to do greater in the future. Already the influence of the Council was felt. more and more in the town, and even further :1 broad. To fi II the (,}¡.1Ír of such a body was a diif«f;icui lt- task, and with so many great predeces- sors in the office he was not sure that the Coun- were not gojllg to be disappointed in him. till, it iailure was to be his lot it would not be because of a want of appreciation or effort on his part. 'I here was one thing he would like to see during his year of office, a.nd that was the more regular and greater attendance of the La- hour representatives of the Council and Guar- dians. (Hear. hear.) A number of them were most diligent and faithful members in their at- tendance, but there were many who could with advantage to everyone follow their laudible ex- ample. (Hear, hear.) In conclusion he rtioved a. hearty vote of thanks to the retiring chair- man, which was seconded and carried. The officers elected for the ensuing year were. Secretary Mr. W. Harris treasurer, Mr. T. J. Evans; vice-president, Mr. Lewis Jones Mr. Sani Jennings, auditor. The executive committee is to be built up on the following lines: Seven miners' representatives, three Mertlivr, two Dowlais, and two Taff and Cynon districts; two Steelworkers; one Co-operative Societies; one building trades, and one I.L.P. representative. Mr T. J. Evans, on behalf of the General Hos- pital Executive made an appeal to the Councli to give its blessing to the appeal to the non-mining industrialists to place themselves on the, Id. a week contributory basis of the miners, and so enable the needed improvements and enlarge- ments to he made. The proposal mot with some criticism, including the statement by Mrs. Da- vies that a woman had twice been prepared for operation, only to be told by the doctor that he was too busy to attend to her. She got, angry and told the doctor what she thought and was told to go homo. Mr. Evans asked that. such cases should be reported to the Executive, who would take the matter up. It was carried to give the appeal, which now goes to the trades unions wit,h speakers from the Labour members of the Executive of the General Hospital, the blessing of the council. The Insurance Agents' delegate asked that de- legates should ask their trade union members collecting with them should be members of their union and should produce their membership cards.