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there would be conflicts and hitches. A measure might be vetoed and re-enacted, and once more vetoed and re-enacted, and vetoed again ; and then there would be acquiescence or compromise. Human affairs are carried on in this give-and-take, rough-andtumble fashion, and in no other. It may be said that Irish members have not shown in the English Parliament a capacity for the working of Parliamentary institutions. They have not been sent to Westminster to help in working our Parliamentary system. They have been sent there to binder and obstruct it; and in doing so they have shown a remarkable capacity of debate and an understanding of Parliamentary rules and forms-using them, it is true, as abusing them. Their mandate is to obstruct; and they have obeyed their mandate. In Dublin Irish opinion would require productive work from them. Things cannot be worse than they are, and they may be a good deal better. Even if Irish business were not better done in Dublin than in Westminster, English, Scotch, and Imperial business would have some chance of being satisfactorily performed, or at any rate of being done in some fashion or other. A separate Parliament for the internal affairs of Great Britain meeting in Westminster, or two separate Parliaments-one for Scotland meeting at Edinburgh, one for England meeting at Westminsterwith an Imperial Parliament, either elected by specially constructed constituencies or chosen by delegation from the national Parliaments, would be the natural completion of the system. The Imperial Parliament need not consist of more than three hundred members. It would be composed mainly of men of proved capacity for statesmanship, trained in the national Parliaments.
The precedents of the great Parliamentary nations of the contemporary world, with the exception of France and Italy, favour the redistribution of legislative work between Imperial and Local Parliaments. The examples of the German Empire, of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, of the Austrian Empire proper, with its Imperial Parliament and its Provincial Diets, the Austrian Duchies, Bohemia, Moravia, the Tyrol, &c., and of the United States, marshal us the way that we should go. France and Italy are negative instances to the same purport. The undue suppression of provincial liberties is the great political calamity of the two great Latin nations. The attempt to legislate for the United Kingdom, and to conduct its business in a single central Parliament, has broken down. Even if there were no disaffection in Ireland, the institution of local Legislatures for local work would be desirable. Oply by this division of labour can the work be satisfactorily done. The institution of Grand Committees, the extension of the powers of Municipalities, the establishment of County Boards, would not sufficiently relieve the pressure of Parliamentary work. The proposal of the late Ministry to establish a system of local self-government, as nearly as possible identical in
the three kingdoms, may be good in itself, but it would not meet the necessities of the case. While Ireland remains disaffected, it would enable her to use these local bodies and boards as a part of the organisation of offence and hindrance. The quarrel with England being abated by the establishment of an Irish Parliament for purely Irish business in Dublin, it is probable that healthy divisions of class feeling, and the play of dissimilar interests and ideas, would find expression, diversifying the monotony of the national life. The war of the cottage against the hall which marked the French Revolution may be clearly traced to the policy of Louis the Fourteenth and Louis the Fifteenth in withdrawing the French nobility from their estates to the salons and ante-chambers of Versailles. The Act of Union, which has brought Irish peers and squires to London, and swollen, if it did not create, the class of absentees, has had a good deal to do with the peasants' war against the landlords which has marked the recent history of the country. If a local Parliament had kept them in their country, matters might have gone on better. If it should restore them in any degree to it, there may be some chance of improvement. But probably, for good or evil, matters have gone too far; in Ireland as in France the owner of the land is likely to become its cultivator, or rather the cultivator is likely to become its owner. This solution is perhaps in the main the best, though the partial qualification of a predominant agrarian system by a different element would have its economic and still more its social advantages. But whatever the process adopted, the redistribution of functions between a central legislature and local chambers is a necessity of efficient Parliamentary government in a great and varied State such as the United Kingdom. Mr. Parnell's agitation and the Irish revolt are the immediate challenge to reform ; but they are not the sole or even the main reason for it.
FRANK H. HILL.
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A MONTHLY REVIEW
EDITED BY JAMES KNOWLES.
No. 110, APRIL 1886.
I. The Evolution of Theology. By Professor HUXLEY
II. The Church and the Villages : What Hope ? By Rev. Dr. JESSOPP . 507 III. The Second Part of “Faust.' By Professor BLACKIE . . . . 528 IV. Thrift among the Children. By Miss Agnes LAMBERT. . . 539
V. Women's Suffrage. By the Hon. Mrs. CHAPMAN. . . . . 561 VI. The Factors of Organic Evolution. By HERBERT SPENCER . . . 570 VII. The Free Trade Idolatry (concluded). By the Right Hon. Lord PENZANCE 590 VIII. Liberal Election Addresses. By Lord EBRINGTON, M.P. . . . 606 IX. Three Attempts to Rule Ireland justly. By R. BARRY O'Brien. 620 X. A ‘Nationalist' Parliament. By W. E. H. LECKY. . . . . 636
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