4 AUGUST 1860, Page 16


IT was not to be expected that Mr. Ewart would succeed in carry- ing his resolutions. The evil he wished to combat is ac- knowledged by men of all parties in the House, and during the recent weeks of the session the necessity for applying some remedy has made itself distinctly felt. We have already stated our own views at considerable length, and our chief object in now recur ---4 to - ing the subject is to recommend the appointment of a Select .r' Committee, at an early period in the ensuing session, to revise the standing orders and the rules of debate. It is perhaps in ac- cordance with the law of progress that such a Committee should be required at no very distant intervals. It is quite certain that the pressure of business, which was barely supportable ten years ago, is now become a serious evil. There are many questions ivhich would come under the consideration of such a Committee. There are some which can never be decided by restriotive regulations, but must be left, more or less, to the good sense of Members. But there are others, of a different character, which can easily be made the subject of practical and obvious rules. A Select Committee is the best machinery that can be devised for putting the House of Commons in possession of the necessary in- formation and we hope that some steps may be taken in this

matter at ithe earliest possible period. There is only one point on which we will, at present, remark. The complaint which is made now was made twelve years ago. A Committee of the House of Commons said, in 1848, that they "desire to rely on the good feeling of the House and on the forbearance of Members and on a general acquiescence in the rule which requires that Members should confine themselves to matters immediately pertinent to the subject of debate." The difficulty to which this statement refers is not one that is likely to be diminished. The truth is, that the average intelligence of the House increases every year, and this growing intelligence must find vent in words. We last week, suggested a remedy, and the evil is certainly one to which the attention of a Select Committee must be chiefly directed.