The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 55
The Government of the Future
The Government of the Future.
Now, while on this point, I wish to say this page break that it does not follow that government by the masses is devoid of Conservatism. That the government of the future will be government by the masses no intelligent man can doubt. There will He a portion of them willing to go to great extremes, and another portion intelligent enough to know that capital is the best friend of labour, and that if the rights and privileges of capital and property are improperly attacked, they will be killing the goose that lays the golden eggs. Labour can do very little without capital, and Capital can do very little without labour. Together they are sworn friends, and most powerful; and whilst, as I have said, political power will be with the masses, I am confident that those masses will have sufficient Intelligence to recognise the twofold duty of the protection of life and property—of manhood and if what manhood acquires—and of repressing monopolies. That is to my mind the Conservative Radicalism of the future. But the colony is a small stage for fighting out those questions. They will solve themselves. Meanwhile, it is as well to bear in mind that we are out here for the purpose of colonisation, and for developing this new country and making it a land of happy homes, and of a happy and prosperous population. (Cheers.) But, to return to my metaphor. The present Government said New Zealand has had quite enough of this philosophical dosing, and not enough of physical sustenance. Put on one side, they urged, the philosophical disquisitions and attend to the material wants of the colony; and on that basis the present Government was formed. I will say this for my colleagues that amongst them are gentlemen well qualified to take the "track," to use an Americanism, in any assemblage in the old world, and argue out those questions with the very best of the doctrinaire philosophers. However, they are content for the present to act with so poor a utilitarian as myself, and to allow those questions to sleep for a time, and devote themselves to the development of the industrial resource? of the colony. That, I may say, is the raison d'etre of the present Government. (Cheers.) They apply themselves then, to the study of such questions as the completion of the main trunk links of railway, feeding them by district lines, and by roads and bridges, and developing the various industries of the country. They are not ashamed to say they attach importance to the development of those industries, and for myself, I am not ashamed to say I would much rather be the father of a new industry than the parent of a philosophical political measure.(Cheers.)