1. But far from unemployment being temporary, the Minister himself has told us emphatically that the Government's policy of restraining wages, which is causing unemployment, is to go on — not for 12 months, but indefinitely.
2. Trade unionists do not find this logic difficult to accept. But they are not so equally convinced that a fair answer will be found in a largely privately owned economy; and that under these conditions the burden of restraint will, in fact, fall fairly on wage-earners and the recipients of dividends.
3. In order to get the Trades Union Congress to accept the latest proposals on wage restraint made by the General Council the delegates are being told that unless they agree to them the alternative is legislation. This is like telling a man that unless he cuts his throat you will shoot him. Either way he hasn't much to look forward to.
4. The Chancellor of the Exchequer impressed on the House that all that was needed was that everyone should behave sensibly and realize that if the country threw away this opportunity it might be long before it got another anything like so favorable. Stable prices could be assured only by price reductions in the field where progress was fastest and If the benefits of progress for which the whole community was responsible were shared by the whole community.
5. The Prime Minister's speech in New York is widely accepted in Continental European financial quarters as a convincing political assurance that he does not plan any devaluation, but there are doubts whether he can successfully defend the pound while also insisting on maintaining economic growth and full employment in Britain. It is conceded that the Labor Government is likely to succeed in balancing Britain's capital account by the end of next year by restricting capital outflow, but it is stressed that it is-not the capital account but the trade account which matters.
6. This system makes a mockery of democracy. The more the "freedom" of these people is interfered with, the more freedom is extended for the majority. The more their right to make profits is limited, the more the rest of the community will benefit.
7. That view will gain ground because a new shock awaits the Parliamentary Labor Party and the Labor movement. The Prime Minister appears to have won the case, and carefully calculated leaks are coming from Cabinet Ministers to prepare us all for yet one more reversal of policy.
8. It is not the critics of the Minister of Economy who are cynical. That is a word which could be more accurately applied to a Minister who says he is for prices being kept down, and then supports a Budget which puts them up.
9. If British economic commitments and promises are to be fulfilled and the presence of a new Minister for Overseas Development in the Cabinet means what the Prime Minister seemed to imply it meant on Monday evening, the aid program is unlikely to be pruned much, if at all.
10. If the staff at Labor Party headquarters get the 12½ per cent pay rise which it is reported they are to be offered, or the bigger increase they may ask for, they will no doubt congratulate themselves not only on their own efforts, but on having employers prepared to stand up to the Government and defy the pay freeze.
11. And even more important than an inquiry into the past is the fight to change future policy. What we should be concerned with is not to prevent "excessive profits" being made out of war preparations, but to prevent any profit being made at all, by ending the waste on arms.
12. Before this was voted on the vice-chairman of the shop stewards committee suggested that, because of the attitude shown by the company they should demand that the original date be adhered to with the full time union officials being brought into consultations on the sacking issue. Had he been able to put this case through the microphone it is certain to have had wide support, but few heard him and the chairman put the original recommendation, which was carried. A shop steward said after the meeting: "I was amazed that a recommendation endorsed by over 100 leading shop stewards of our union last night was not put to the meeting. I feel that had this been explained and the vice-chairman been able to speak on his suggestion, then there would have been a very different decision today. They would have rejected redundancy and insisted on further negotiations."
13. The argument about whether the motor companies should release workers to the rest of the labor market rather than put them on short time reveals once again the great divide between economic ideas in the abstract and the way the British economy works at present.
14. The big question in industry today is security of employment. As redundancy and short-time working spread throughout the car industry and the many industries wholly or largely dependent upon it, as the same process operates in the other sections producing consumer durable goods of all kinds, like furniture and refrigerators, and as the program of pit closures gets under way, workers everywhere must be worried about their own jobs even if they are not in one of the immediately hard-hit industries.
15. It is a thorough disgrace that a Labor council should be acting in this way. A Labor council should set an example as a model landlord, not as peacemaker for the avaricious, grasping private landlords. The reason for the increase in rents is the usual one — the council is in the red on its housing account. But that is not the fault of the tenants. It is the fault of the Government which has failed to keep its election manifesto promise to "introduce a policy of lower interest rates for housing." It is also the fault of the council for not insisting that the Government honors its pledge. Instead of an increase in rents, the council should insist that interest on housing loans should be cut. This is something the Government could do instead of slinging money down the drain keeping troops in West Germany, Aden or Singapore. Apart from the gross injustice of the extortionate demands, rent increases are a very bad electoral advertisement for Labor. So let us wish the tenants every success in their struggle against boneheaded bureaucrats in the Town Hall.
16. It was he who with the Prime Minister turned the scales against having a snap election in November without making even the pretence of coping with the dollar crisis. It was he who threw his weight in favor of February as the best moment to send the Labor machine into action; and it is he who will profit most among the party's leaders if Labor wins.
17. An early general election, which last week would have seemed bound to introduce a score of irrelevant issues at this time of pressing national anxiety, is now the only way of ending the confusion caused by what Mr N. termed the Government's decision "to aggravate and inflame political and party strife, not by words only — we all use words in party politics — but by deeds." To this all-important side of the question Mr M. made only passing references.
18. A call for continuous pressure on the Government to act before more newspapers are forced to close down was made by Mr M., Labor MP for Ashfield, at the end of the Press teach-in in London on Wednesday evening. Summing up the entire teach-in, Mr M. said a lot of different proposals had been put forward during the3V2-hour discussion. But he believed that most would agree that some form of Government intervention was necessary. "The only way we can get the Government to see the urgency of the problem is for the Labor and progressive movement generally to keep up a continuous pressure on the Government to act, and to act now before there are more closures." Nearly 1,000 people met for the Press teach-in sponsored jointly by the Sunday Citizen, Tribune and the Morning Star, and held at Camden Town Hall. Almost all were convinced of the need for Government intervention to save the Press from being at the mercy of the highest bidders, men whose concern was not for democracy but only for money-making.
19. In his speech to newspaper editors yesterday the Paymaster General named monopoly and big commercial advertisers as a threat to Press freedom and democracy. But having revealed many of the things that were wrong, unfortunately he did not assist us by making proposals which would help to put things right. How amazing that he did not mention that the Government, of which he is a member, had given the death blow to the Sunday Citizen, by refusing to give that cooperatively owned newspaper the advertising aid it asked for. Yet by refusing to aid the Citizen and stop Lord T. swallowing The Times, the Government itself has helped the "process of concentration and monopoly" which, the Paymaster General said yesterday, he regarded as a danger not only to Press freedom, but to democracy itself. By giving the Press tycoons all this advertising, and depriving the independent Morning Star of a fair share, the Government is helping to increase the danger to democracy. Having lectured the newspaper editors, the Paymaster General ought now to lecture the Cabinet on its public duty to provide the Morning Star and Tribune, the last remaining papers of the Left, with more Government advertisements. In the long run, however, the future of the Morning Star depends on its readers. It is to them that we always appeal, as we do again, to champion the cause of Press independence by winning new readers of this newspaper, and new contributors to its Fund.
20. The National Coal Board chairman was criticized at the Aberfan Inquiry yesterday after he had said that safety precautions for looking after tips were inadequate before the disaster. The Coal Board chairman told the inquiry that he did not think there was any doubt that had new techniques on tip safety been taken advantage of, there was a high probability that they would not have been at the tribunal yesterday. The inquiry chairman said, "Had we realized that it was quite possible to know by the use of available measures that this disaster was impending and preventable, the Coal Board chairman would have been asked weeks ago to make a statement to the Treasury solicitor and weeks and months of this inquiry would have been rendered unnecessary."
21. It is time it was understood that history does not develop according to the formulae of those who would like to conserve it, those who would like to arrest the movement of the people along the road of progress.
22. The Foreign Secretary is reported to be annoyed because the Americans didn't consult him about their decision to go ahead with an anti-ballistic missile system. But this is typical of the U. S. Government's attitude to Britain, and he ought to be used to it by now. The Foreign Secretary would be in a stronger position to complain if his own nuclear policy were any more sensible or any less dangerous than America's.
23. But the text of the communiqué which is likely to be agreed at another restricted session of the 22 delegations at Marlborough House this morning is expected to be mainly a record of disagreements — with Britain's view shown to be a minority one in the conference.
24. The Prime Minister has done the right thing in ending speculation about a summer election. He had pretty well forced an announcement on himself. Irritating the Labor party with his cat-and-mouse tactics did not matter; the fact that he was teasing the public as well did. The announcement is also timed. To have made it earlier might have taken any zest there was out of the local government elections; to have made it later would have invited the charge that the Prime Minister had been influenced by their results. The new Cabinet shows significant changes, both personal and constructional, from the old one. Naturally it will be looked at most searchingly in the Ministries which touch the home front, and particularly its economics. It was the failure either to coordinate these Ministries successfully, or to present an intelligible picture of their activities to the electorate, which was the chief weakness of the previous Cabinet. The Prime Minister's own record is here at its most untried. He will have to show that his capacity for government is sufficiently unspecialized to make him as successful on the home front as he has been on the overseas.
25. Geneva, Tuesday. The broadening of trade with the Socialist countries was advocated here today by the Secretary-General of the United Nations Conference on trade and development. He told the Conference that there was a "great potential" in the Socialist lands because of their high rate of economic growth. For the time being, he said, trade with the Socialist countries would have to be within a framework of bilateral accords, but he hoped that by degrees conditions would be created "growing from bilateralism to multilateralism."
26. The approach to the Common Market will be accompanied by intensive efforts within E.F.T.A. to improve and strengthen the association and, incidentally, to make it a more powerful bargaining platform. The British Premier who opened the discussion is understood to have told his visitors that British membership of the Common Market is "many years ahead" but that it was time for the E.F.T.A. countries to get together to consider a joint policy. With representatives present from five of the other E.F.T.A. Governments and three Common Market Governments, the occasion could hardly have been more suitable for launching the theme. In any event, everyone seems to have been pleasantly surprised by the friendliness of the discussions and the wide range of agreement that was reached. The participants of the conference seemed to have stressed the dangers that could ensue from two European groups each with internal Customs freedom but separated by a high tariff barrier. An arrangement under which the Six could be treated as one economic unit which might enter into relations with E. F. T. A. to give a wider free trade group is also to be explored. The leader of the Canadian New Democratic Party put the Commonwealth viewpoint forcefully at the meeting and earned the British Premier's assurance that Britain could not join a European trade block that was committed to an agricultural policy like that of the Common Market.
27. The Foreign Minister of West Germany is understood to have emphasized that his proposals for political union were not intended to exclude Britain from the talks; but there were many difficulties, he pointed out, to be overcome by the Six before they could see clearly which way they were heading. There was no point in bringing in Britain before they had reached that stage.
28. The real need is for the Western powers to maintain their basic objectives, but to be more supple in applying them in the search for unity, and the beginning should be in a recognition that unity is more likely to come in a relaxation of general European tension. Complete rigidity is in danger of defeating the ends it has in view.
29. History will one day record that there has never been in the U. S. a group or organization which has been lied about, vilified, persecuted as has been the Communist Party. Some day when the truth gets a hearing, the historian will pick up his pen and record that no finer contribution has been made to the cause of freedom in general and Negro freedom in particular than that made by the American Communist Party.
30. Today the Soviet Union has emerged as the main force, generating enough power to give to peoples of colour the world over the confidence that they could shake off the shackles of world imperialism. Were it not for Soviet power offering an alternative to capitalism and imperialism it is doubtful that over one and a half billion people would have been able to free themselves from colonialism and imperialism.
31. The Negro revolt has many causes, but its basic power is that of the force of economic wretchedness. It is this wretchedness that technological change is threatening to exacerbate beyond endurance by automating out of existence many of the unskilled and skilled jobs Negroes hold. That the Negro community is in the throes of profound economic crisis is evident from the unemployment figures.
32. It used to be said of the American Negro that he was "poor before he was black", that he would vote the Democratic ticket, in spite of the Southern Democrat's support of racial segregation, because the Democratic party was the party of the New Deal.
33. Next to the life-and-death issues of nuclear war, racial prejudice is perhaps the greatest single problem in the modern world; and although it is true that the solutions are not simple, the moral issue underlying it is simplicity itself. Such an appeal would seek to confront racial prejudice head-on: possibly by pointing to the rich and varied contributions which past waves of immigrants have made to national life, even more by laying bare the fundamental inhumanity on which racial prejudice is based. Conceivably, this might lose votes. Even so, it would itself help to change the moral climate.
34. Every struggle for human rights takes on a different aspect, even though the fundamental facts remain the same, whether it be struggle for free speech in the streets or on the campuses, or fight for social justice everywhere. "The silent generation" now speaking again, as youth should, freely and independently, are facing all the slanders repeated by the baffled reactionaries unable to abide the fact that the young people have principles which they are willing to fight for.
35. This polarization of forces is ominous. The dominant issue having been what it was, the tension in race relations, already severe, is now most unlikely to be relaxed.
36. It will take 270 electoral votes to win the presidential race, with the heavily-populated States, with their big blocks of votes, the key ones.
37. When the pound was devalued the British people were assured that unpleasant though this medicine might be, it would mark the turning of the tide. Now, two days after the first anniversary of devaluation the Chancellor of the Exchequer has to fly off to Bonn after midnight discussions in Whitehall because there is a new monetary crisis. Last March the dollar was almost devalued. Now it is the franc which is in the front line. If either of these two currencies were to fall, the pound would almost certainly have to be devalued again.
38. The real reason for British capitalism's desperation to enter the Common Market is its desire to pave the way for the next stage in the development of the super trusts.
39. What was this statement designed to achieve? There seems to have been nothing in it that would lead one to conclude that the General wished to frighten the British Government into abandoning its siege of the Common Market. Certainly, he must have realized by now that it is not the kind to be frightened off its chosen objective. The only convincing supposition is that the meeting was designed, however indirectly, as a warning.
40. If the meeting of the Council of Ministers in Luxembourg should reveal a strong consensus of opinion among France's five Common Market partners in favor of negotiations, then the French Government will have little alternative. What is most likely to happen is that it will attempt to gain time, and put forward every conceivable argument to cause delay.
41. It is not the Ford strike which is at the root of the trouble for it had not started during the period covered by these figures. It is not the workers who last year produced a balance of payment deficit of £458 million. It was not the workers who sent over £620 million for investment abroad last year instead of investing it in industry in Britain.'
42. Although military aviation can be said to have started in 1870 when balloons were used during the siege of Paris, it was not until the first world war that it became of substantial importance.
43. The real talks begin tomorrow. The seriousness of the two opening statements has rather lightened the atmosphere. Now there are some hopes that there could be a tacit understanding, rather than a formal freeze, on M.I.T.V.s weapons. Nevertheless the two statements did touch in dilute and tactful fashion on the basic differences in the U. S. and Soviet Union approaches which will have to be reconciled if there is to be progress.
44. It may be unprecedented, but it is not illogical for the Chancellor of the Exchequer to have used his Budget speech for announcing the Government's intention of hustling through Parliament an Act designed to shackle the trades unions. The Budget, like the preceding ones of this Government, has as its main objective to devalue our wage packets. The decision to rush through the anti-T.U. legislation is aimed at disarming the working people, and hampering them in their struggle to retain the real value of their hard-earned wage packets. It is a policy aimed at ensuring that any increase in either productivity or output should lead not to more wages, but to more profit... There can be no other explanation for the Chancellor's moan that increased production and productivity rose only four times as much as wages.
45. The Congressman was deprived of his scat last month by vote of the House pending investigations by the special committee on the grounds that he had put taxpayers' money to his own use, flouted the law by refusing to pay libel damages, and evaded jail sentences imposed for contempt of court.
46. This political chicane exposed the U. S. administration fleeing at high speed from the showdown it inwardly shrinks from but for months has been outwardly "demanding."
47. The Brazilian Foreign Minister made a far-reaching proposal: since a peace-keeping operation was not foreseen in writing the Charter, a new chapter authorizing and regulating such operations should be introduced between Chapter VI, which deals with the pacific settlement of disputes, and Chapter VII, which authorizes the employ of force by member states.
48. Most of the African states have only been in existence a couple of years. One cannot therefore expect to see as yet, any decisive change in the pattern of the economy in these countries. The change from an underdeveloped country to a developed one is a huge task.
49. If one examines the various African territories, both those still under direct colonial rule and those which have recently won their political independence, one finds that despite local differences, there is a certain essential similarity in character of their economics.
50. When we remember that when the United Nations was founded there were only three African states — one of them being the Union of South Africa, governed then as now not by the masses of the people but by an imperialistic minority; when we recall that in 1960 alone no less than 16 of those states gained their formal political independence, we gain some idea of the pace and extent of change in the African continent.
51. If the capital needs of underdeveloped countries are particularly heavy, one must recognize that their absorptive capacity, on the other hand, remains more limited than was the case of Europe in the nineteenth century.
52. There were 540 road accidents on Tuesday, and 22 people were killed, bringing the death toll for the five days of Christmas to 158. This is 82 more than for the four-day Christmas period of last year, and 50 more than the provisional figure at the end of the five-day Christmas of 1964. One of the worst features of this year's accident figures is that while the total number of road accidents is down on last year (2,856 compared with 2,963 for the four days from Friday midnight), the number of dead and injured is up. "The holiday figures show how urgently we need the Road Safety Bill," the Minister of Transport said yesterday.
53. Even the restrained Mr В., not a man given to talking in headlines, proclaimed himself as "almost appalled" at the inadequacies of one important aspect of mental care — the in-patient accommodation for seriously maladjusted children. The regional hospital boards gave this such a low priority that some of the children have to go into adult wards. It looked as though such specialized services always stay at the bottom of the priority lists, and Mr B. wanted the boards to equip themselves on a group basis. "How these nurses and attendants conduct their duties and look after the patients is an unparalleled task, and one you would not conceive humanly possible for them to do as well as they do." "If we are to secure a greater public understanding of the problem we have to restore also the confidence which the public are entitled to feel that in these special hospitals, no matter how far medical science advances, security is, and is seen to be, the primary responsibility of those in charge."
54. Although some smaller details can be glimpsed visually in exceptionally good conditions, pictures of Mars obtained by space probes from about 5,000 miles, and away from the atmosphere of the earth, are likely to be a revelation. A new era in planetary investigation has begun. There seems good reason to anticipate reproductions of the Martian surface which are likely to answer the controversial and important question of whether the straightish markings, the so-called canals, are natural or artificial formations. Even if these probes should fail, it cannot be very long before our knowledge of the Martian surface will be transformed as a result of space techniques.
55. The United States is clearly committed to a policy of development of outer space for peaceful purposes with the widest possible dissemination of the fruits of that effort. But if development is to proceed under a rule of law rather than a rule of might, all nations must agree upon and accept international rules of behaviour governing space activities.