10 MARCH 1906, Page 17



SIE,—As a retired official, may I point out, with reference to a " News of the Week" paragraph in the Spectator of March 3rd, that the conditions of Government service are wholly and absolutely different from those obtaining in the classes usually associated with Trade-Unionism? These conditions are :—(1) fixity of tenure, (2) progressive pay, (3) full pay during sickness, and (4) old-age pensions ; not to mention free medical attendance, and other minor privileges, which go to the complete differentiation of the two classes of workers. Efficiency in the minor ranks of the Civil Service tarns mainly on discipline ; but discipline will receive a great blow when any worker, or class of workers, may memorialise the Minister at the head of a Department, over the head of his immediate superior and all other intermediaries. The length these people are prepared to go was well illustrated by the scandalous proceedings at the Central Telegraph Office when Lord Stanley lost his seat at the General Election; and there is very little doubt that the possibility you contemplate—viz., disfranchisement—will speedily follow the grant of full Trade-Union privileges.—I am, Sir, &c., EMERITUS.