11 JULY 1908, Page 3

On Friday week Mr. Lloyd George, who was entertained at

dinner by the Lord Mayor, after describing the commercial depression which is visiting all countries in the world, said : "Everything is diminishing except the demands on the Treasury." As for the Old-Age Pensions Bill, "if every demand that was made and voted on bad been conceded, it would have been a Bill, not of £7,000,000, but of nearly £30,000,000." We agree ; but can it be doubted that if the Bill becomes law those demands will all be repeated, and eventually enforced? When a fatal principle is once accepted, it is almost impossible to arrest its progress. "The nation must realise," said Mr. Lloyd George, " that if it is to keep off taxation it must take a genuine interest in expenditure as well." We do so, and are called "belated fanatics" by Mr. Asquith. But the final statement of Mr. Lloyd George was positively cynical in its irresponsibility. "Somebody has got to be taxed, and I wish I could tell you who." We deplore it in a Labour Member when he puts forward proposals without counting the cost as an integral part of each scheme. What are we to say of a Chancellor of the Exchequer who commits so criminal a folly ?