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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 70

[introduction]

As a private member of the National Association of New Zealand, I would like to offer a few remarks on the five planks in its platform, the first of which is "To promote a national sentiment, as opposed to sectional and class interests." "What a truly noble ideal! If a national sentiment prevailed here the people of this Colony would be united in object, effort, and feeling, instead of disunited and forgetting that they are "members one of another." Never before except at the close of the last decade was there such a pronounced and distrustful feeling between the classes as exists to-day. It reached a climax in September, 1890, when a wave of delusive sentiment swept over Australasia. In this Colony it was characterised as "Millarism;" because an unknown, obscure, and irresponsible man at a distance, exercising despotic power, led thousands of thoughtless men to throw up their situations without valid reason for their action, or a week's wages to fall back upon. With a single stroke they struck work and the knell of prosperity.