Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

15 erthygl ar y dudalen hon



LONDON LETTER. [SPECIALLY WI1U5D. J [BY OUR GALLERY COKKESJPONDENT. ] LONDON, Sunday Night. The fact that Mr Gladstone, after attend- ing yesterday's Cabinet Council, bore the journey to Hawarden without showing more signs of fatigue than might be ex- pected, considering his age and his half century of Parliamentary life, is reassuring. Looking at his excellent constitution, and at the care which he has always taken of it, all who knew anything of the Premier's life look forward with confidence to the result of the total rest at Hawarden which Sir Andrew Clark has prescribed. There are yet six weeks to the be- ginning of the session, a period which, passed in a warmer climate, would do much to restore the Prime Minister's health. It is within a few days of two years ago that the right hon. gentleman was com- pelled to take that course by the advice of his physician. Then as now there had been an autumn sitting, which had lasted from the middle of October to the beginning of December, and as the bulk of the work tell upon Mr Gladstone, his strength proved unequal to the strain. Numerous inquiries have been made respecting the Premier's condition at his official residence to-day. The announcement of the indisposition of Mr Gladstone has created a profound sensation of regret. The facts as they hava been put before the public lose," as a col- league of the Premier said yesterday, nothing in the way of colour. The first account of the circumstances is contained in the paragraph of a few lines communicated in the usual way to the morning newspapers u" t the news agencies. This simply •seated that Mr Gladstone had re- cently been feeling the strain of his work, and that Sir Andrew Clark had pre- served—not absolute rest—but as much res-" as possi ?." Hereupon enterprising r, ,esentatil the newsagencies were despat search of Sir Andrew, and the ca: gravity. Sir Andrew expresses totonished at what was made ou v minutes' conversation with hir teal fact is that Mr Glad- stone worried, less perhaps by the urs of the two sessions of the .11 by the anxiety that weighs j now in connection with foreign .iial and European. Contrary to .ry habit, which enables him in times of highest pressure sleep the moment he gets in heu, now lies awake thinking of these things, and gets up in the morning even more weary than he went to bed. This is bad enough. But it is merely a temporary condition of affairs which may pass away in a day. The Globe of yesterday announced that Mr Gladstone's health has broken down to such an extent as to necessitate his im- mediate return to Hawarden. This is the kind of alarmist statement sure to be current at a time like this. Happily the readers of the Globe, better informed than the writer, well know that Mr Gladstone came to town for the special purpose of attending a Cabi- net Council, and that his return to Hawar- den follows as a matter of course. I hear that at the Cabinet Council a pro- posal was before Ministers pointing to the summoning of a fresh conference onEgpytian affair*. It is understood that Prince Bismarck is the principal promoter of this scheme. It was resolved to decline the invitation on the part of the British Govern- ment, whose own proposals are yet before the Powers, and have not received a definite answer. To summon a fresh conference on this question would be purely idle. There has already been one, at which it was clearly demonstrated that no common action could be taken by England and the con- tinental powers. It is not so much with Germany, Russia, Austria, and Italy that the difficulty lies. These Powers have intimated that they would be ready to consent to any course that may be approved by France and England. Thus France is put in the forefront, and is made to bear the brunt of condemnation for the sore still remaining open. Whether, if France were to prove amenable to the argu- ments of Lord Granville, the Powers would join in, is a question it would not be safe to answer in the affirmative. On the whole the disposition is so unmistakeably hostile to a friendly settlement that to go into confer- ence again would be a farce. In the meantime Egypt is on the way to settle the matter herself. Within three months the crash must come, for there is no more money to be raised in the way of loan, and yet the administration of the State must somehow or other be carried on. I have only to repeat what I have already frequently stated upon high personal authority. The alternative policy of Mr Gladstone's Government in the event of all overtures being declined by the Con- tinental Powers is to advise the Khedive to declare the State bankrupt, and thereafter let affairs take the broad lines indicated in ordinary bankruptcy proceedings. Egypt is still "a going concern," and must be kept going. The revenues from the national taxation will in the iirst case be applied to the expenses of ad- ministering national affairs, and after that iirsi necessity is met, whatever remains over will be scrupulously paid into the Caisse in .settlement, as far as it will go, of the de- mands of the bondowners. This mayor may not be legal in the eyes of the international tribunal, but it is eminently practicable, and what cise is there to be done The railway companies, like the insurance companies, declare that they are doing busi- ness at all unremunerative rate. The com- petition in some cases, and in some othershe necessity for buying offopposition for new bills has led to the establishment of rates which the companies say barely cover working expenses. With the object of remedying this, notice was given in November of bills ru be introduced in Parliament in the coming session, taking powers to readjust ~'ie rates. The traders are now up in arms liuinat this proposal, and intend to fight every bill in the committee-room. With the bject of organising the campaign a meetins: of traders, c ham hers of commerce and agriculture, and trade associations is to lie held at the Cannon-street hotel next week.