30 MAY 1925, Page 2

There are several reasons why he ought not to do

so but we need mention only two. One is that any public statement by a Cabinet Minister is properly taken as involving the collective responsibility of the Cabinet— the objection raised to Mr. Snowden's articles when the Labour Government was in power will be remembered—• and the other is that the authority and prestige of a Department are sure to suffer when the head of it is known to be spending a considerable part of his time in writing on subjects which have nothing to do with his public work. While we are discussing this subject we should like to add that we wish it were possible for ex-Ministers, as well as Ministers, to be independent of any gnawing anxiety about their means of livelihood.: The nation now fortunately draws upon all classes for its statesmen. The days are past when almost every Minister who relinquished office fell back upon the enjoyment of an ample income. Adequate pensions for ex-Cabinet Ministers are a reform for which we have often pleaded. Ex-Ministers ought to be regarded by the nation as Elder Statesmen whose experience and brains are still needed by the nation. They ought not to become unavailable for this work because they are harassed day in and day out by the mere effort of maintaining themselves.

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