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A (mercifully?) brief 1909 Hansard trawl - featuring Scottish tobacco, 'medicinal alchohol' and yet more cattle mutilation

Not a lot happening today one hundred years back, and still less in 1959 and 1809. Hey ho...




Mr. MUNRO FERGUSON It is quite true that this is not an occasion for offering any opposition to this Bill, and I doubt whether anyone in the House entertains any feeling of opposition to it.

Always a worrying sign. To quote a quarter remembered line from Bernard Levin, 'anything that unites both sets of backbanchers will necessarily be a scheme against the general public'.

And, note, horrible misuse of langauge:

All that I would do further is to remind the Prime Minister and the House that the third and impossible alternative would be to add another ordinary hide-bound Scottish Board to the number of Boards which are already in Scotland.
Pa Croydonian (GRHS) would be driven to distraction by the suggestion of multiple alternatives. Like father, like son..

That apart, Ferguson was not happy:

Every interest in Scotland connected with agriculture has decayed, and reached figures which demand the serious attention of statesmen who value the character, permanence, and vigour of our people. We find that in all Scotland there are only 79,000 separate occupations, while in Ireland there are 516,000; Denmark, which is half the size of Scotland, has 250,000; and in the German Empire there are 5,200,000 occupations under 50 acres. Even that does not represent the full extent of the evil, because while there are 79,000 separate occupations, a great many of those occupations are not separately occupied.

Erm, maybe folk had found an easier or more profitable way of making a living than farming...

After much special pleading he came up with this:

We have had outbreaks of foot and mouth disease in Midlothian, which were dealt with in a manner that caused the greatest dissatisfaction. Scotland was absolutely cut off from England. We contend that if we had a Department of Agriculture we should be able to keep out disease, as it has been done in Denmark;

In the same way that a department of health keeps out diseases of humans, I suppose.

Sir Alpheus Morton (Lib):

....What we really want is Home Rule for Scotland in regard to her local affairs. I will give an instance. Take the case of tobacco-growing. We had a Bill for Scotland to enable tobacco to be grown, and I at once asked the Secretary for Scotland whether the Government would be prepared to assist tobacco-growing in Scotland as the Irish Board of Agriculture had assisted it in Ireland...

I shudder to think quite how fierce Scots tobacco would be. Sobranies would taste like health cigarettes in comparison.

Finance Bill (Medicinal Spirits)

Sir CLEMENT HIL (Lib, I think) asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he can see his way to exempt spirits used for medicinal purposes only from the extra duty proposed by the Finance Bill?

Mr. LLOYD-GEORGE I must refer the hon. Member to the reply which I gave on 16th June last to the hon. Member for Wolverhampton West.

Alas that reply refuses to be tracked down, but I think L-G should have said 'come off it Clem'.

Those cattle had great PR bods:

Captain CRAIG asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he is aware that on a farm at Ballygoughlin, near Glin, county Limerick, a cow was found a few days ago with two legs missing, which had evidently been hacked off with some sharp instrument; and, if so, whether any arrest has been made by the police in connection with this outrage?

Mr. BIRRELL I am informed by the constabulary authorities that on 25th July a cow was found on the farm in question with its forelegs houghed. The police are investigating the case, but no arrests have yet been made.

Indeed, not a Friesian falleth on the ground without Mr Birrell.

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Blogger All Seeing Eye said... 4:49 pm

I've always treated spirits as being medicinal anyway, so it is a travesty that there should be any tax on alcohol.

They'll try to tax the lime in my G&T next even though I count it as one of my five required daily fruits'n'stuff.  

Blogger James Higham said... 5:23 pm

Gee - these are highly entertaining. Who wuddathunkit?  

Blogger Croydonian said... 5:44 pm

ASE - Too true.

'And malt does more than Milton can
to justify God's ways to man'. Source

James - I am surprised at how much good stuff is cropping up. I have further aces up my sleeve too...  

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