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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 5, Issue 1 (May 1, 1930)

Fashion's New Victim

page 23

Fashion's New Victim.

That the British worker must be fed and clothed cheaply, if the employee and employer in the Dominions are to prosper, is of course an axiom. His Majesty's Trade Commissioner in New Zealand, Mr. L. A. Paish, in emphasising Britain's recovery, compares her unemployment figures favourably with those of Germany and the United States, and says there are only two depressed British industries—coalmining and textiles. Textiles include cotton (suffering from capital inflation as well as new Indian and Japanese competition) and wool. Last year the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr. Philip Snowden, emphasised the greater expansibility of British trade with India (of low purchasing power) than with Australia, whose slow-growing population has a high purchasing power, also a high tariff. But while there could be a great expansion in Indian buying, India's tariff is high enough, her manufacturers are keen enough, and her labour is cheap enough to leave the importer no simple task. But if no immediate fortune is to be made by textile manufactures in supplying cottons to India, better luck may attend the effort to induce men to wear rich, dainty lingerie. Fashion has long exploited women. Why not men? Those ladders of fortune created by the short skirt might equally accompany short trousers.