11 JANUARY 1908, Page 17



SIR,—In his letter which appeared in the last Spectator " M.P." expresses regret at the tone of your recent article on Socialism and Tariff Reform as being calculated to widen the breach between Free-traders and Tariff Reformers in the Unionist Party. May I, on the other hand, be permitted to thank you for that article, which formulated in clear language the feelings of many of those who are strongly opposed to the ill-judged attempt on the part of a section of Unionists to force upon the whole party a policy which, in the opinion of many, would cause grave injury to the interests of this country? " M.P." suggests the establishment of a truce upon. the question ; but apparently his notion of a truce is that while the Tariff Reformers are to press their attack, Free-traders are to refrain from defending their position. This can hardly be regarded as reasonable, having regard to the fact. that it was the so-called Tariff Reformers who started the conflict, and who have so far only succeeded in breaking up the Unionist Party. If they desire a truce, all that is necessary is for them to drop the question ; but so long as we see that Conservative Associations, political speakers, and the public Press push Protectionist views with great ardour, it seems to me that no truce is possible, and I trust that the Spectator may continue on its present course without any regard for the feelings of Tariff Reformers. The fact that the article in question has called forth a letter such as that of " M.P." is a proof that the arrow has hit the mark, and that your arguments with regard to the connexion between Tariff Reform and Socialism, a con- flexion clear enough to the unbiassed observer, are unanswer- able. It is all the more necessary that this point of view should be pressed home, when, as at the present time, there are Unionist politicians who seem prepared to assist Socialism in order to get Socialistic support for their schemes of Protection.