11 JULY 1931, Page 1

Parliament and Coal The Times has described the Government's Coal

Bill as taking an offer of the owners without its condition and making of it a political present to the miners, and has accused the Government of making Parliament and the owners" the victims of a plot engineered by politicians not over-scrupulous in their methods." However the House of Commons passed the Bill through all its stages, whether it thought that accusation obvious nonsense or not. The fixing of hours and wages has been so arranged as to include as , much as both sides had .already agreed to. The principal point in dispute, the appointment of a national body competent to discuss wages, is left undecided. The Bill does exactly what it professes to do, in that it gives a year's respite for further negotiations, and the only way in which the further negotiations are affected is that the abolition of the spread-over brings conditions nearer to national uniformity, and renders them more capable of discussion on a national basis. The House has- taken the obviously sensible course in passing it; There was no other 'alternative to anarchy in the industry next week,.. • -