15 MARCH 1873, Page 3

Mr. Roebuck made a speech at Sheffield on Monday, in

which he developed all his ideas against Trades' Unions, or rather against their working machinery. He denounced the Union delegate as a kind of typical demagogue, and advised the workman always to consider the employer his true delegate and best friend. " Depend upon it that those who employ the work- ing-men are their real friends ; and if they understand and con- ciliate the employers of labour, they will make to themselves a future that shall make England greater than she has ever been." The master "knows your wants, knows your difficulties, knows your failings, but he is your best friend." The workmen are to conciliate their employers, and then everything will go right. Very good, but suppose Mr. Roebuck extends the idea a little further. Is it not a barrister's duty, for example, to snub the Bencher who talks to him about the " etiquette " of the profession, and to conciliate the customer by taking any fee he can get, and to look upon the client as in all ways his best friend? Why is the master in a factory, who does not even know his " hands" names, so much more sure to study their interests than they are themselves ? Because he is wiser? Very likely ; but the root idea of self- government, we take it, is that self-interest is sometimes a better guide than superior knowledge.