19 JULY 1919, Page 13


SPECTATOR."] SIR,—Can nothing be done to put a stop to the wanton extravagance now in operation in Ireland ? As jobs aro distributed in turn to the two political parties, the Irish Members of Parliament are, greatly to their discredit, silent. What are the facts, most of which have been exposed in previous letters to the Spectator? For three years there was a judicial vacancy in the King's Bench Division. No incon- venience was experienced, and even under these circumstances the King's Bench Judges had hardly work sufficient to occupy half their time. Outside the Division there are High Court Judges available if required, who have barely a day's work in the week. In this state of affairs an Ulster Member of Parliament was suddenly raised to the Bench at a salary of „e3,500 per annum in 1917. Further, the Master of the King's Bench was absent on war service for three years in England. His duties, now very small, were performed by the officials in the office without inconvenience. He was induced to retire, and a Master is appointed at a salary of 1:1,500 per annum. In the Land Commission the Estates Commissioners are practically idle. Notwithstanding, the Commissionership vacant by the death of Mr. Bailey was filled up last year at a cost to the country of £2,000 per annum.

We now come to the latest scandal. A vacancy in the King's Bench Division has recently occurred by the resignation of Mr. Justice Madden. The country has learned with astonish- ment that this vacancy has been filled. These facts are notorious and cannot be contradicted. Business in the High Court is declining every year. With what face can a Govern- ment guilty of this flagrant waste call on the country to con- tribute to loans! The officials in many Departments where the duties are heavy and the pay is small have their deeeands for fair remuneration peremptorily refused on the ground of pur financial condition. If mere jobs can be perpetrated in legal administration where everybody knows the facts, what is going on in Departments whose doings are not known to the public? Will no English or Scotch M.P. take the matter up and ascertain who are the responsible parties?—I am, Sir, &c., Lax.