Page 7, 7th May 1937

7th May 1937
Page 7
Page 7, 7th May 1937 — The News That Interests and Matters

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The News That Interests and Matters

APRIL 30 — MAY 4


Unemployment Down

Unemployment figures have again decreased and are once more at the level of December, 1929, prior to the slump. There are flow 1,454,753 unemployed, a decrease of 146,758 as compared with a month ago. and 376,787 as compared with a year ago. The two areas showing the heaviest decreases were London and Scotland. Among the trades that showed the most marked decreases in unemployment during the period were building, distributive, agriculture, and coal-mining. These trades have also benefited the most from the revival over the last year.


Three importadt by-elections last week provided an interesting demonstration of the strength respectively of the pro-Government and pro-Opposition forces in the country. Contrary to expectation, the Government candidate held Stalybridge and Hyde, but with a very small majority, the previous Conservative majority having been 5,073: Mr. H. B. Trevor Cox (Cons.) 21,901 Rev. Gordon Lang (Lab.) .. 21,567 Conservative majority .. 334 At Central Wandsworth, Ns predicted, the Labour candidate, Major Nathan, considerably increased the Labour poll and won the seat from the Government candidate, Mr. R. Jennings. The previous Conservative majority was 4,323 : Major Nathan (Lab.) .. 12,406 Mr. R. Jennings (Cons.) .. 11,991 Labour majority .. 485 At West Birmingham the poll was low and the Conservative vote slumped by over three and a half thousand. but the increase in the Labour poll was slight. The Conservative majority is reduced from 7,371 to 2,920: Mr. W. Higgs (Cons.) .. .. 12,552 Mr. R. Crossman (Lab.) .. .. 9,632 Cons. majority 2,920 Polling at York, where the Hon. Charles Wood (Cons.) has a straight fight with Mr. John Dugdale (Lab.), took place on May 6.

Public Opinion and Guernica

The General Council of the Labour Party and Trades Union Congress has issued a strongly worded protest against the alleged bombing of Guernica by German aeroplanes and the massacre of civilians in cold blood, calling upon the British Government to take action. The National Council of Labour Women made a similar protest. At a crowded pro-League of Nations Meeting at the Albert Hall seven thousand people endorsed a denunciation of such bombing of open towns by Lord Cecil and a demand for an international enquiry to establish responsibility.

Well-known M.P. Dead

Captain " Freddie " Guest, Conservative M.P. for Plymouth (Drake) and famous sportsman, has died in his sleep aged 63. He started his career in the Army and fought in the South African War and the Great War, in which he was awarded the D.S.O. He first entered the House of Commons as Liberal member for East Dorset in 1910, which constituency he represented till 1922. He was Secretary of State for Air from 1921 to 1922. In 1927 he was returned for Bristol North, but was constantly at variance with his party, and in 1930 became a Conservative. In 1931 he was returned for Plymouth (Drake). His death necessitates a by-election in that division. The figures at the last General Election were; Capt. F. E Guest (Cons.) .. 21,446 J. Moses (Lab.) 15,368 Conservative majority .. 6,078 The seat is usually Conservative, but was won by Labour in 1929.

'Bus Strikes

From midnight last Friday London's traffic has been semi-paralysed by a " hundred per cent." 'bus strike. In view of the crowds visiting London as a result of the approaching Correlation the trams, tube and underground trains are packed to sufrocation. The reason for the strike is stated to he the London Passenger Transport Board's refusal to negotiate with the unions for a seven and a half hour day. The Government has appointed a Committee, consisting of Sir Arthur Pugh, Mr. Basil Sanderson, and Mr. John Forster (Chairman), to enquire into the matter, but the findings of the Committee, which has been public. are not binding. The first witness heard was Mr. Ernest Bevin, of the Transport Workers' Union, who claimed that the strain now imposed upon 'busmen had become intolerable and that the toll of disease and nervous illness was far beyond belief.

Other (unofficial) 'bus strikes include the men in the Chelmsford, Norwich, Oxford, Kent and East York areas.

Civil !At Recommendations

The Select Committee appointed to examine the Civil List has now reported and the original sum allotted for the Sovereign is not to be aItered—i410,000. An extra £10,000 is to go to the Duke of Gloucester and £6,000 from the Consolidated Fund to Princess Elizabeth. to be increased to 05,000 upon attaining her majority. Special provision is made for the eventuality of the birth of a future Duke of Cornwall and, as expected, no provision has been made for the Duke of Windsor.

A resolution was moved by Major Attlee. the Leader of the Opposition, claiming that steps should be taken to ensure that the Monarchy be more simple in its way of life and more in harmony with modern democratic conditions, but this resolution was defeated.

French Finance Minister and Franc

M. Vincent-Auriol. the French Finance Minister, has stated that in no case will the franc he allowed to go beneath the legal limit of 112 to the pound. Strong reserves for this purpose exist, he declared, and there would be no further long-term loan. He gave a statement as to the Treasury position in order to contradict false rumours, and emphasised the strength of the Stabilisation Fund and of the Bank of France.

Nazis Sentence Priest and Attack Church

The trial of the Catholic Youth leaders before the " People's Court " in Berlin ended in a sentence of eleven years' imprisonment for Fr. Rossaint, while three laymen were sentenced to shorter terms. They were found guilty of pacifism and proCommunist intrigue, despite the evidence of Communists to the contrary. A strong attack on the Catholic Peace Society was made by the President.

This was the prelude to a Press attack upon the religious orders for " immoral acts," Over a thousand priests have been arrested and are to be tried on such charges. Dr. (ioebbels has now given the order for a large-scale offensive of slander and calumny against the Church.

Belgium's Position Defined

M. Speak, the Belgian Foreign Minister, has made an important statement defining Belgium's attitude in the event of war. The right of passage for foreign aeroplanes can only be given by Belgian consent, and then only in the case of fulfilment of League obligations by joint action, he said. Moreover, there will in future be no military agreements, but Belgium will claim the right to discuss her national defence as, how and with whom she pleases. Further discussions may be required to define Belgium's eventual obligations under the Covenant of the League.

Wage Increases In Italy

Signor Mussolini has told the Central Corporative Committee that wages are to be raised throughout Italy by 10 to 12 per cent. on May 9, except in the case of wages exceeding 1.500 lire (f15) per month. State employees are not to benefit from this new ruling. This measure is to meet the steady rise in the cost of living in Italy since 1935, the rise being estimated at 60 per cent. Spaghetti and olive oil have also risen. and this has caused real hardship, while there. arc no signs of this process stopping as yet.

Japanese Election Results

Although only some fifty per cent. of the Japanese electorate voted, the results of the General Election showed a strong opposition to General Hayashi's Government in that only forty of the four hun


dred and sixty-six members of the Diet will support him. Both the Minseito {Liberal) and Seiyukai (Conservative) parties have renewed their opposition. while a striking feature of the polls is the fact that the Social Mass (Labour) Party nearly doubled its seats, and now has some forty representatives in the Diet.

Despite this, General Hayashi has declared that he intends to remain in office and expects the support of his opponents. This announcement has given rise to much indignation.

May Day Abroad

Taken as a whole, May Day passed off more calmly in most foreign countries than was anticipated. There was a large procession to the Place de Ia Nation in Paris, where M. Jouhaux, the Trade Union leader, spoke. In Moscow there was the usual gigantic parade before the Soviet leaders at the Kremlin, while in Vienna the =eche' s, who proceeded along the Ringstrasse, were more numerous than usual. In Warsaw elements of the Extreme Right attacked Socialist marchers, and in all two people were killed and some eighty wounded in riots that took place in various parts of Poland.

In Berlin Herr Hitler addressed a huge crowd on the Tempelhof and, besides making the customary attack upon Russia and the Jews, explained why wages could not be raised in Germany at present.

Spanish Civil War

Again, the main activity has centred upon the Basque front, where General Mola's troops are now in command of Arnorebieta and Berrneo, being very close to Bilbao. The Basque troops have, however, retaliated, and at the moment General Moles advance appears to have been temporarily checked.

A communique has been issued by General Franco asserting that, while there may have been some bombing by German aeroplanes, the town was destroyed by local Anarchists.

The preliminary steps have now been taken to evacuate civilian refugees (old people and Children) from Bilbao, and the British Government has promised to protect the various British ships that will assist in the evacuation in co-operation with the Basque Government. General Franco has protested against this and declares that the evacuation is not necessary. Moreover, he cannot guarantee the safety of such operations within the three-mile limit for strategic reasons.

Austrian President in Hungary

President Miklas of Austria has paid an official visit to Admiral liorthy, Regent of Hungary, and was received with great cordiality in Budapest. He had conversations with M. Daranyi, the Prime Minister, and M. de Kanya, the Foreign Minister, and much emphasis was laid upon the close friendship between the two countries, as well as with Italy and Germany.

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