I Call It Infernal Cheek
gm Ellen Wilkinson relates how the Duchess of Atholl, during her recent visit to Spain, met a Hungarian general fighting on the Red side. The general pointed out that, though she might be a duchess, he had risen from a shepherd boy to be the general of a revolutionary army. " Not at all," replied the Duchess, " you arc not a revolutionary general . . ;you are orthodox. The constitutional general of a legal Government engaged in putting down a revolution. That's why I'm here."
Miss Wilkinson ecstatically describes it as " a moment." I call it infernal cheek on the part of one of the army of British busybodies who can never rest unless they are trying to teach some foreigner his own business. No wonder the Continent is getting a little tired of us. The story epitomises the nature of the British intervention in Spain.
Suspicions of Labour
SIR Stafford Cripps may be a nuisance, but he generally sees two corners ahead of any of his colleagues. In a recent speech he has contrasted the ineptitude of Labour politics with the increase of militancy among the workers. It is because he is right that more and more Catholics are becoming anxious about the future of Left movements in this country. Those of us who sympathise with Labour—and we arc very numerous—would like to see a much more vigorous and more keenly thoughtout political programme. Instead, we watch the growth of the class-war for the class-war's sake, and this, as Catholics, we cannot support. Nor does the fact that most Labour militants are pacifists, while we are called militarists, reassure us.
' HE current number of Blackfrairs con tains an amusing satire by Fr. T. Gilby called " Inside Out 2037." By that date the West is finished and the East has risen to the highest point of modern civilisation. A Chinese Monsignor visits our backward shores to find the Dominicans of Hawkfriars pleading for the machinery and technocracy that will liberate the soul for higher things in the spirit of primitive Christianity as was attempted in 1937 and as has been at length achieved by the East. A copy of the Catholic Herald of 1937 helps him to illustrate his point for " it is instinct with the marvellous technohumanism of the time."
I should also mention Fr Gumbley's useful article on Geoffrey Baskerville's much praised book on the Suppression of the Monasteries. We have shown it up in a small space but those who have been worried by the reviews in the ordinary press will find Fr. Gumbley's criticism very useful.
THE death of Miss Moberley, for many years Principal of St. Hugh's College, Oxford, recalls the mystery of Versailles. The strange experiences of two English ladies who were visiting the grounds of the Palace and witnessed people and incidents of 1789, including Marie-Antoinette herself, were recounted anonymously in " An Adventure." Later Miss Moberley admitted that she was one of the authors. There is no doubt that the book recounts a genuine experience all the more remarkable in that the authors only became aware after the event through their own study of the historical accuracy of much of what they saw. If 1 remember right some of the music they heard was afterwards discovered in manuscripts untouched since the Revolution. The strangest of all psychical adventures!
A Useful Verse
1 ant told that Miss Moberley was the author of the following verse which always seems to me to express finally one aspect of this puzzling world : " If only the good were clever And only the clever were good. This world would be very much better Than ever we thought that it could. But, alas, things seldom, if ever, Turn out as we think that they should: The good are so hard to the clever, The clever so rude to the good."
The 'Bus Strike
c" OLV1TUR A MBULAN DO " suggests a correspondent, showing how bright were the Latins in saying quite a lot in a very few words.
" There must -be no divine rigfits among the workers."—M. Blum.
tt . a rising tide of militancy which I hope no one inside our movement will do anything to hold back because it is a vital motive power to our movement."—Sir S. Cripps.
"We all rejoice . . . that the successor of St. Augustine of Canterbury will place the ancient Crown of England on his head. Yet it has to be admitted that, in the changed circumstances of Christendom, the rite has lost some of its significance."—The Church Times.
"This latest and most wholesale act of self-isolation . . '"—Daily Telegraph on Italian Press ban.
" Nowadays . . . there are no harmless inventions."—Mr. A. G. Macdonell.
" No one can pretend to descry signs of permanent peace between the forces of the Left in Spain."J—The New Statesman and Nation.