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THE DICKER CASE
ACTION OF THE HOUSE OF
MR. DICKER ON HIS CASE.
A HEÄTED DLSCUS5I0N.
In tlio Houso of Assembly yesterday the Premier (Hon. W. U. Lee), pursuant to no'.ico given, moved: -
"That this House deplores that, at a timo, tv'hen tlio people cf Australia'havo pledged themcolveo to render to the British 1-upiro, their utmost aid in lltib world-wide ' mu-, ono Of its mem- bers (Mr. D. ¡E. ¡Dicker) ""niel have used tlie following wiords:-'X xvould as soon bo under the German ralo as under _m British, and if Australia wore in trottblo Britein xx-ould not fire ii "voit to help her'-.^hiclh hax-c been found by tbo courts of tho Stute to be projutlicial to reoruiiting, and, in tho opinion of this House, ,tho words 60 ( useel ore disloyal and a contravention
of the lion, mcnibor's oath of allegiance to His Majesty tho King."
Ho Gaid he extremely regretted Chat it I should have boon necessary for lmn_ to I lako such a stop ; it xx-tjs. painful to him, i but it xvas ono etiolated by a sense of the I duty !ho oxv-ed to tlio Houso and tlio cora
liiunitj-. In introducing the motion ho de shed to avoid all bitterness of feeling.
Mr. Dicker: oh, tbait will como.
The Pa-ecuier: Then it will not como from me, as I deeply rcgre»; tho necessity for moving euch a motion, dealing, as it I does, xvith. an ¡lion, mombor of this Houso. Tito circumstances xvoro familiar lo all. Mr. Dicker xvas c!harg?d beforo tho Polico Magistrate, and convicted, of having used tlio xvords mentioned in tin' motion, and that conviction was np hold, and Air. Dickor's appeal dismissed, by tlio ¡Full Court. It was a coso irliicth cacited nrutíh public t»onoorn not only in Tasmania but fltrou.bout the Common- wealth. Whilst t'ho Qovermnenï xvns con- sidering what should bo its attitude, _" _ embers of tho Parliamentary Public Works Committoa, of which Air. Dicker ivan a mombor, notified him (tho Pre- mier) t"at: they absolutely refused to be any longer associated xvith Air. Bicker, and that was easily understood xv'hou it xvas considered thut n't least, two of "te members of that committee 'liad lost sons ii. (fighting tho eiiemy. As Mr. Dicker -.vas u member of the committee, noini rjatcel by -the Labour parity, he (tho Pre- mier) comm "dca ted vi'Mi Air. Lyons. the Leader of f'lio Opposition, und that pelly, in its attitude, did not seem'al to- gether free from'reproach.
Air. ¡Lyons :\ Uli! (¡his is a political
'Clio Premier: No political gnnic at all. (Hear, hpar.) He xvxote to Air. I/yoaa, through, the Treasurer, enclosing a copy of the letter received from tlie Public Works- Coiumittoe, and "del.-"Mt. Dicker xvub appointed ii lnoniber of the committee on tho nomination of tlio Op- position, and it appears that tho execu- tive lins no power to deal xvitii his cuio. Ai ho lias, I undorshnml, intimated hie intention to remain a member of tho com- mittee, it seems to mo that you, «s leader of tho Opposition!, sihoulel bo np-" nriseel of t'ho contents of the committee's letlor in ordor that you ? may consider whether any action should ho taken by jon as such loaelcr. ¡Mr. Lyons replied tim t ¡Mr. Dicker intended appealing against tho conviction, and, therefore, he ronfiidored eommoiit at pr"ent unjunti fied: tho fc at a lutor stagn lie xvnuld re- fer tho maittor lo his party. The conx-ic lion xvas upliold ou appeal, oud ho lie (the Premier) xvroto to Mr Lions on April IS.-"In view of +ho fact that the appeal lins not hoon upheld, and as the conviction stand»!, I shall be. pleased to know ii you will bring this matter be- fen c your party as early as possible, and acepiuint me of xvhat atftion iii proposed tj he taken" (That me_nt as to uotni
rating some other Labuan» menibor to net on tho Public Works Committee.) Mr. lixons -replied that it xvas .lot coavonient to coll'¡his pirly together just then on account of the I'Vdcral election campaign, but lie xvould do so l""er. Later he wrole tirai he vas endcavouiing to ar rango a meeting. On Juno ó Air. Lyons wrote:-"I find that the majoi-ity of" my party are opposed to meeting to specially c'.tal with rho matter/' adding that ho x\ould put tiko matter beforo them -when Piirliamcnt mut. Ho tthe Premier) re- plied that it x\as only fair theil the party should have an opportunity of expiessing its -vioxvs, and pressed for a decision On Wednesday last Afr. ¡Lyons xxxoto: - "Re- ferring to your correspondence on t_.o Question of t'be relations between Mr. Dickor and fho Public Works Comnnt'"e, I liavo to inform you that the ineuibers of, my party have considered tho mat- tet, and "avoconio to the conclusion tliat as Ali-. Dicker han emphatically denied the charge laid against lum, theie is no justification, for taking any aciaoa «gainst liim. I nota xvhat you cay on l3io subject of disloyal utterances by Ala-. Dicker. 1 am iinararo of any öhargo of disloyal uttoranocs against Air. Dicker." That be- ing tlio attitude of the Oppooition leader and his party, thr.0 xvas no other course open to him but to take "io serious step he was _oxv doing. Out of consideration for the bon. member ho (tho Premier), in order to give 'him an opportunity of making reparation as far "as ho could, saxv Ali. ¡Dicker personally on Wednes elay, nnd asked linn if 'he proposod to take "io opportunity to bo presented to him to apologie*) for the statements at- tributed to bim, or to withdraw theiu, oi qualify them in any wsiy.
Air. Lyons : How could ho if ¡no did not
Air. ¡Dicker: I rise to a point of ordOT. Ho only asked mo to apologise or xulïv draw-, not to qualify.
Tho Premier: I may be x-.TOiig as to thexvorel .'qualify." Iaskoel hnntoapolo gise, xvlthdraxv. and make a satisfactory statement to tlio House, 'and ho abso- lutely refusetl to do anything of tho kind. Tho import of the motion xvas serious in its character, impugning tlie loyal- ty of a cilicen of tlie State, a member of the House, and the honesty of the oath of allegiauco and loyalty to tho King he had taken when life >becamo a member of tho House. It xvas to bo hoivcd that upon the motion being carried, which lw: had ovory con- fidence it xvould bo, Air. Dickor would se-o his way to lake Ihn step ho should al- ready Ina ve takon of resigning from iho Public Works Committee.
Air. Dicker: Timt'H where the shoe pinches, isn't it?
Tho Premier: If the hon. menibor does not seo lias ivrtiy to do to it xvill become ray duty as Leader of the Houms to in- troduce a bill, which xx-ould havo the effect upon being p _"<l of reinox-ing Air. Dicker from the t committee, and 1 will give the Opposition an opportunity oi nominating onothor member to i»it on tlio committee in Air. Dicker's place.
Air. Becker: Tho chairman of that coniinittca ¡has to bo given a job lo keep him cjuiet.
Mr. M'ulcnliy : Tlw bon. mombor should ivithdvaxv that remark, and I xtoultl ad- vino him to bo moro careful in future.
Tho ?Oliaármnn called upon Air. Becker to xvithd.TO.xv his remark, which lie did.
Tho-P.xem'ior: I hope members oppo?!lo will realise tho gravity of this matter, and keep themselves inthin bounds. (Hear, .¡hoar.) It is xvitii a full sense of my responsibilities that I fool compelled to take tlîîs stop tc-day. What fiirthf« hleps will have to bo 'akeu I am not in a jiosition to say, as constitutional <
cutties xvill have to l>e consult,'"1 by the Government in all their bearings.
A Labour Arembor: All dictated by "Tho Mea-eary."
. The Premier: I am dictated to only sby a sense of aiy duty to this House ni.
Iho eountiT. (Hoar, hear.) Hçie x10 uro 111 u Hfe-and-dcalh struggle w-iUi tho Qormans, and it is no light thing tor a member ot this.House, elected»by the
people and supposed to repi-ciont tlic-ir. vioxvs, to have .been found guilty and con- victed of having mude slntemonts preju- dicial to rparuvting, and give utterance to snell elialoyal views. I am not going to tolerate buch conduct inside o>.* outside of thia Chamber by a member of the House whilst I bolong to it. -le is almost inoied'iblo that in parti, of Australia in- stances of such conduct liave beon 1 ghtly isassed over. J feel confident that the House w_l icnl'so the gravity of tho posi- tion, so as to let ic go forth to Uto coun- try and the liiiî.lrei that xvp have no time lor men who utter such sentnuents, and Especially members of our Parliament, and thut wa wdl not tolerate the same by any member xvithc-ut giving expression ki'Our. nrotcnt in the xery stirongest terms.' If. tho opinion of tho House is Hot sufficient to lead the lion, member lo r"ign from the Publ-'e Won Its C0111 uiillee, but pcrsiolentlx- floula the Houo3
and tho comaibtoo, otter stejis will have to bo taken to vindicate oui» lionour and that of the members of that committco, who declino to bo any longor associated With him. (Hear, hear.)
Mr. Lyons (Leader of tlie Opposition) said Cliey wero asked to vindicate ths honour of tho House beoau«" "The Mer- cury" said it lind to bo el-one. (ACnis-" teaial dissent.) He coituiiondotí tho Pre- mier for having first communiai (eel xvitii him in the meutter, but ha xvns no.v seek- ing to make, political capital out of tho affair. _ &
Sovoral Miniotexrialists : No, no1
Air. Lyons : "¡Tes, hy not only attacking Mx. Dicker, but by trying lo east the re- sponsibility upon ük whole of tho Labour parry.
- Tho Pto_jí_»¡ I only compinia of tho
l-efusal of your\ party to take any action m regaird to th*< lion, member.
Mr. Lyons asserted that it was all a political move. Tho Piemier had asked Mr. Dicker to nipo'ogiso tor ¿avin" used weirds that he had sworn li« had never u tiercel.
Mr. Sadler: But he has been envicted of it, and the conviction on appeal has been uphold.
Ahr. Lyons salid he was prepo-red to toko the denial of Mr. Dicker before the worels of «'those who had given evidence against ham. One of tho most disloyal sentiments ho (Air. Lyons) had ever heard uttered was ustered ty a jnembor m that Chambeo' 3ast session, nrânoiy, that the control of Australia should for a timo bo handed over to tue peonlo of Ja. .an.
Mr. Whitsitt : Whose sthtCTamt was itf Air. Lyons : Tlio slotoinent of tho hon.
Mr. Whitsitt (excitedly): My statement was 1_at if tho poMt.cians of Australia wore unable to control tho I.W.W.'s ia New South Walos it xvas time thnt our Ally, Japan, carno in to extinguish such ruffians and their demoniacal xvork. Thoro men sxvoro death and hell to tlio Btitiiih ¡Empire. And those nne my sent!, monts to-diny.
Ahr. Lyons : His statement was that Japan ¡.ho"Id bo called in, and no men-
tion tras modo of tho I.W.W.'s.
Mr. Dickor : Less than ten minutes ago I heard tho bon. moraber nioka tho same statement as Mr. Lyons ment-'ons.
Tho Speaker : The lion. monibET says he never made the sfatement.
Air. Ogden: I am propared to swear ho diel.
Tho Speaker told Air. Lyon« that lie must xvithdraw tho clrargo of disloyal utteranco against Mr. Whitsitt.
Mr. Lyons : God ¡help Australia if it be contended that a coloured race bhould come ia to control Australian affairs, and it is not considered disloynl to say so.
Mr. Whitsitt: Japan is our Ally. We don't want Germans to como lo control Australia.
Tho Speaker : "hero is no comparison botweeu the txvo statements.
Mr. Lyons said tho xrnole matter had nlroady been denit with by the courts of law, and Mr. Dicker hud nex'er been
charged in any court'iritih disloynl utter- ances, upon xvhich it xvas sought to wreck tho man's reputation and cai-cer for the rest of his life. God ."oibid liha-t German rule aud Prussian militarism should ever
appear in Australia-(cheers)-and that x\-as W10 real vioxv of Mr. Dicker, being like tho rest or us, full of zeal for Aus- tralia remaining a free country with, fico
Air. Bicker: Hoar, hear.
Mr. Lxons said x\o differeil on political questions, but all desired to maintain the constitutional liberties of the people, and Al r. Bicker, anti anybody else in his senses, held that view, lie-felt _uio that thero xvas a misundoi standing as to the v. olds Air. Dicker really used. ', They heard that mennber deliver a most inter- esting ppeecli in tlho House last se_ion on the military position in Eurolie, ami he ims complimentod 'by tho Treasurer and otlieis upon it, ano it stumped him as, ono anxious for the success ot tlio Allies in the great struggle. A xiilnets who xvas xvith Air. DicKcr at tho timo had coiroboratetl him in saying that the charge made 'against him xvas not true, and us further proof of his v ictus theia xvns the fact t-hat he, had helped to organise lecruiting meetings, and in map- ping out a. progianimo of such incetiugs m his district. Ho (Mr. Lyon;,) xvas not satisfied to take tho evidence of those xvho
xvero called against the hon. member, but prof erred to ta-k-e Air. Dicker \> assurance that ho had been wrongly and unjustly "___ed. At times- thoy might, regina Mr. Dicker as extremo in lils political views, but ho had^ncxer knoxvn him to go back upon ¡his word, and the party had abwluto oonifideiico in him as lar .is his honesty and truthfulness xvero con- cerned. Other lion, mcnihers xvero liablo
lo liax-o x-amped up charges made against them on tue' enètenco of people -»'ho xvora merely posing iu tho country large- ly for advoi tisement. Lot the House lie careful that it did not do anything it might bo earry ior in years to come. Mr. Dickt-r bad assured him personally, on his honour, and ho would? tell tho Houso so, that h-o did not mean xvhat lind been imputed to ¡him. and that ho was loyal, anel not one of his colleagues believed him to bo guilty of the charge laid against lum. Actresses 'had great schemes for advertising themselves, some- times hy notifying the loas of -valuable jewellery, and sometimes t-y falling into tho water xvilih soaiebodv conveniently handy to pulil them out. ,Again ho assorted that Air. ¡Dtoier denied that he over said what was imputed against him, that his words had been misconstrued, but admittcel ¡having said that England had never yet been culled npno to fire a eliot for Australia, but elie had for other parts of the Umpire, which was historically true. The parry liad confi- dence in him, and admired the xiay in which ho had worked himself up li-om the lowest rung of the latlder, and how he had displayed marked abüity in rela- tion to public affairs. Taerefore he ap- pealed to hon. members opposite to esor oiso their sense- of fair play, and not tako the opportunity because of numbers lo do the man a xvrong. He moved, as au amendment,
That, whilst wo deplore the fact that an lion, msmbor of tho House has been charged and found guilty of making statements that aro calculated, to pieju elico recruiting, anti utiheeitatinglj con- demn and doprecato the statements that wero attributed to ihini, we aro strongly of opinion that such state- ments were never given expression lo by Air. Dicker, mid, notwithstanding tho fact that ho was punished for the supposod offence, xve aio prepared to ac copt his sworn denial, und the evidence of tlie witness to xvüoni le was leport ed to ha.vo made tac remarks, beloro tho evidence of tho two unknown and nofcoriot-y-seeking individuals xvho laid the information. This House is f urfiicr of opinion that, a Court of British jus- tice having already dealt with the case, it would be unfair, and contrary to tlho accepted tenets of law and justice, tot any othor isolfjappoinlcel body to ut toinpt to persecute by inflicting uddi tieuiul punishment.
Air. Dicker aid ho wanted to thank his friends for tho advertisement they
had given bim, and to publicly thank "Tho Aforciiry" for tho ettonsivo adxei tisemeiits they had given him. Ho bad looked upon the xvliolc matter as a poli- tical move frot " tho start. The remarks of the Premier wore certainly interest- ing when the Premier had said that peo- ple wore talking strongly- He (Mr. Dicker) reminded him that people were talking strongly an the othor tlirpctio'i. If there wai reason to bko action against him (Air. Dicker) because people wero talking strongly, thou he did not jrivo much for the Premier's judgment. Tho Premier had told the Houso that ho had asked him-(Mr. Dicker) if ho would with- draw, apologise, or make a qualifying statomcut. Ho (Air. Dicker) xvished to give thd latter portion erf the remarks
an omphatic denial. When the Premier called bim into his room he asked if ho (Mt. Dicker) intended to niako an apology, or withdraw tho xvords which had been attributed to him. Ho told the Premier that he would not withdraw words xvhich bo had claimed ho had never uttered, or ropiuliato anything that ho had not done. Ho (tlio Premier) ro ßlicd, "I am very horry," and ho (Mr.
Ickorl replieel that he xvas also very sorry that .tbo Premier bael thought fit to ask snell a thing. Ho repeated that ho xvas narry that tho Premier should havo asked the question because ho lind sworn on oat.li that the statements attri- buted lo bim (Mr. Dicker) were untrue. The Premier had given him no oppor- tunity to mo¡ko a.alutemont.
Tho Premier: I ""inctlv asked whe- ther Mr! Dicker xvas going to make an apology, withdraw, or mubo a statement. This Hotisi xvas in session, and Mr. Dicker bud a full' and niuplo opportunity.
Air. Dicker said that xvhen ho enmc to the Houso lie thought Uiero was ii cauldron of boiling water waiting . for him, according to a" rnporls. Had ho (Mr. Dicker; thought (hat. a statoment was wanted he xvould have boen pleased to haye made it. ? After seeing tho arti- cles, m "The Mercury" bo thought it just as ív.oll in tho circumstances to wait. He lind waited. Ho was rather pleased willi the action that tho Premier had now taken, because ho wni'tod to deal
nilli tho wild statements made by tho I
Liberal press and some of tho Liberal politicians. He, wus sorry that mon xvith whom ho had been», associated so long should havo soon fit to stoop so low na to deliberately misrepresent the chargo that had been laid against him. Ile X'oyer thought they would havo con- descended to listen to such tilings, and really thought they were above it. By their views and expressions some had tleliberatly misrepresented his coso to the pubHc, and had gone so far as to de- clare him to bo disloyal. As n matter of fact, "Tho Moreurv" had been re Imked by tho Police Magistrate for tho statements ii mado. Tho Police Magis- trate declared that that newspaper had prejudiced tho ease in tho eves of the public. It was the same old gamo of politicians-tho old political echemo everything was good enough to flog an opponent xvith. Men who had claimed to bo the champions of liberty wore the first- to descend to tho gutter of mis- representation and to hurl filthy abuse. It, should bo their desire to be above tliat. Wlion the Police Magistrate tried (iho caso he hod to draw attention to tho delibernto misioprrse_tatio¡n that was go- ing on Barely after tho Police Magis- trate had rebuked thn press, others xvould havo had the common decency to refrain from continuing on the c-auie lines. The true facts of tho case, he (Mr. Dicker) cluimed, had never been put before th« public, and there xvas a great deal that was not known. Ho wanted to publicly thank tho ropotor of "The Mercury" who reported the case in the I'olice Court the firït day. His report was accurate; It- xvas tho íeport of a man-a gentle- man- The second day's report-xvell, it xvas tho most groes and deliberate mis- representation that could possibly bo com- piled by u reporter. He novar road such an innccurato report-and the pubHc xxho read it xvould only bo able to get the op- posite view on the evidence that was in tondeel. And the reports were done by two distinct reporters. He personally xvished to thank the reporter of the first day's proceedings, but he could not thank the reportar of the second day'6 proceed- ings. Hero wero txvo types ot men, both Englishmen, ono of whom was the best of men, and the other tho absolute"lowest thing that crawled! ("Oh.") "unfor- tunately wo had too many people or Jus kind here. Some of tho people xvho came out lhere from tho Old Ocvuntiy thought lliey had u license to run AustraHa and Australian people, and they lost no oppor- tunity of trying lo do so on every pos- sible occasion, as, for instance, the pco plo xvho "ad *" sworn tho information against him. It waa a lucky thing for the friend xvho was xvith liim (Mr. Dickor) at tho timo tho words xvero supposed to have been uttered that the women die! not lind,out his name, or lhere would have boen two charge» instead of one. Hi_ friend xvas tlie secretory of the anti conscription campaign, and had they got his name he xvould Eave been charged for
Mr. Sadler: Did he say something disloyal, loo?
Mr. Dicker said he did not say a word. (Laughter.) He xvas the kind of gentle- man xvho generally mouopohscd a conr vorsation. He (Mr. Dicker) ívantod to point out that three out of four of the xvomenfolk who gave evidence he liad never spoken to tit all. Ho sat at the table carrying on an ordinary conversa- tion, and the (wo women who swore the information interposed. Ho instinctively took u dislike to thom. In futuro xvhen ho mot people to xx-hom he took an in i-tinctixo difcliko be xvould leave them hoverely alone. It xvns a mistake 311 this instance to havo had anything to lio xvith them. Tho two women were strangers to him. One of thom xias dressed very attractively, xulli oil the ?latest finery. He got the ''glad eye," and sho exposed a fino limb, and xvoro a new big lint, (Lauglhtcr.) She played her part xioll. His friend locked at him (Air. Dickeii, and they both chuckled. They took no further notice of the women until they began to abuse lustra linn people. Ho nea'rd the same old story at, to how littlo Australia had done lor England, and as to how much England hat! donn for Auâtialia, os xvell as mo part that England xvas playing in tate xvar. Their conversation xvas a general belittlcment of Australia and Australian peoplo. After a little xvOiilo ho (Mr. Dicker) said io his friend, "it is a pecu- liar tiling xx ihh these peoplo who come out here xvho say "oxx- little Australia has tlone fqr England and how much England has done loi» Australia that they fail ti realise xvhut Australia, ¡has dono fo- Kng land." Ho then xvont on lo enumérate the wars in which Austialia had lent a hand, and said, "Yet theso people carno out here and belittled (the part that Aus- tralia had played." (Hear, hear.) As an Australian, ¡ho resented xvhut had boen said. No other country had etone what Australia had to help tho MolQier Coun- try, and ho very naturally resented the
deprecatory ' statements of (imported, peoplo xvho had no love for us. 'lhel sooner thase people kept out of Austra- lia, tho better for Anstialia. bad the bet- ter it xvould bo for tile Bin pire.
Mr. Whitsitt: What, British peoplo?
Air. Dicker: Yes, of tho type of these women. Continuing, ¡ho said that fclioy wore tho greatest enemies wo coald ¡havo. "n enemy without was not so had as an enemy within. The Australian woman xvas doing her duty in all paris of the Empire, whilo tho women xvho had sworn the charge against bim still stuck to tlio stage insteudof giving their service» on behalf of the war. lio pointed out that while Australia xvas pouring out blood and treasuro, Bngkind had not boon call- ed on to fire a shot for Australia. Every oüher part of the Empire had to lie taken by conquest; but. happily, war had never been waged for Australia. He could quite understand peoplo xvho had listened to the conversation misconstruing things of this kind. Bat a significant fact xvas .that tho x\omon xvho elwore the informa- tion, swore the opposite in the witness box to what xins in the information. The
information alleged that ho (Mr. Dicker) «.lid that England would not hre a shot in the defence, of Australia.
Mr. Sadler: England is filing shots m th-e defence of Australia every day.
Mr,. Dicker said that was bo, but Aus- tralia was doing her hharo of tho firing. Under croâs-o.xamination, the xi omen said that wtiat had boen said was, "Would England Uro A shot?" One half of tho dhaxge had 'been denied by the women who luid tho information, and tho defi- nite charge Iliad been converted into a question. As to having staled that he liad enid that ¡Ba-ilancl would not uro a shot, he used no such xvords, and nchv denied having uticd thom. His words wore, "England had not been called on lo fire a shot," which xvas a totally different thing. It xvas an historic fool that Eng- land bael not waged xvar to obtain posses- sion of Australia. When tho women xvent into court they b1 bei ed Hie xvhole of their vwidence, 1,0 far as that portion of the chargo xvas concerned. In explaining the next phase of tho matter-German rulo lie realised that the Premier, in common with somo of ibis ccHo.'giios, had been forced into this action, and ho realised that he was ashamed, of that action. Mr. Aluloaihy: Who?
Mr. Dicker: Ton, for oue. ("Ob.") You are ashamed of the political capital thal ¡has beon made out of it. Continu- ing, ho «aid that Ibe people, according- to the Pieiuier, were talking strongly. "Tho Mercury" conlaineel ellong utterances of w.liat had taken place on political plat forms, and members ot »1,5 Government had to justify themselves in the House and try mid saxe their faces. It x\-as oulv 11 little xvhilo since the conscription campaign was beforo the people, and evorx-boely knew the stand ho took on that' question. If there xvas an anti militari-t in that Chamber, it was him- self, und he did 'his best to combat the vile curses of militiarists. ("Oh.") Ho loft tho Public Works Committee, os a mombor of xvhich bo received 25s. a day, and put his hand, in his pocket to carry on the campaign to prevent the military tystem pt Germany Tieing can ice! on in Australia, and nie ejig,íe""n that ho would prefer Gorman >"ih_could not bo reconciled with that fact. It was, there- fore, absolutely falso to say that he pre- ferred German rule; if ho did, ho would havo been an ardent consenptionist. Once» the Geiinaii military bjstem came to Australia, thoro would he very little fieetkuu. Ho hew sufficient of the ínili inrv system lo koop it out of Australia There xvas no need for ii. All unat xx-as wanted xvas to shoxv tho people what', xvas required. Introduce equaiitv of sacrifice.
Mr. Sadler: I believe they uro going lo do it.
Mr. Dicker said that he (I'd not knoxv to much nb.Mil that. Million.! of money was fcoing leaped out of the flesh and blood of the "cn who had loft our storr*. Ho bohovtd that the public should know every item of news in con net tion xvitlii tho xvar. The people had boen kept in the dork, ami falso optimism hael been created, which x<'us not a xv"e thing, so foi- as recruiting- xvas concerned in Australia. Had the truth ib"n told to Australia, tho army would havo boen big- ger 'than it was to-day. Tho people should luivo tho power of expressing the truth. In oonnection with the st.iteju_ut about his prcfcriing lo live under Gennuii rule, he deniid that he ever made lue stato
mont, and as mueh as he admired many things in German law, the only thing which justified th» wat was Gurman _ili"rit>m.
Mr. Sadler : They are cultured bar- barians. ,
Mi-. Dicker: Quite so. Ex-ery country thal adcptevl militarism became cultured barbarian, unfortunately yre lind boen forced into a system of defence. Tho Brit- ish Army to-day xias practically a vol- unteer anny. Thoro were very fow con- script m it. The Conscription Act in England xvas very different from themea swo i>icpt>sed in Australia. He main- tained liictt tho people participating in a canx'orsation xvsro botter able to say xvhat took placo-iihan those xvho might hnx-e overheard it, and also complained of "indouent hnsto" between the scrxieo of tiho information and the healing of the case. Although he "even- discussed the matter with his xvitness, tho state- ments mado by'his xvitness and IHrnself to his solicitor on ti o rame day xvere identical. The Premier could 6eo those statemen'ta if ho w-ished.
Mr. Whitsitt: Did i't ever como out in ovidence?
Air. Dicker : Tes.
Air. W_ihsdtt¡ How xvas it you were convicted, then?
Air. Dicker: Do tcu. know a caso in Australia whero tlho man has gat the benefit of the doub.? Ho a>«kd that the character of some of t!he witnesses against him was not too good. Tho whola thing seemed to havo been engineered for political purposes on tlio eve of an election. ¡Nothing had done more than his case to prejiidico recruiting in Tasmania.. I\ was also an election dodge. If the Premier wanted further impartial evi dvneo as to whether he had done any- thing to rxrejudice recruiting, he could ask tlio military authorities to produce -if tliey were men «lough to do it-a letter mitton by a recruiting officer stat- ing t'liut ho (Afcr. ¡Dicker) was doing re- cruiting work m his own district at the lime of _ie prceecntion. A good deal of falso sentiment had been associated xvitii the proreoution. No sonso of liberty and fair play hod been «bown. Aiembors of that House had shown this false sentiment during the olections bj' using '.ho names of their dead heroes in oonnection xvith his case. Mr. Mulcahy, xmi having u son, had dragged the name of his nephew into it. Mr Hean, by mentioning 'lils dead son, had raised this filthy and false senti- ment for "io purpose of making political capital, and it was a disgrace lo 'him.
Mr. Hean: Where did I do itP
Mr. Dicker: In the library of this House, to 'The MCTcury"-reporterR, and before tho wholo of the Press reporters.
Air. Hean (speaking with tsonio emo- tion): I giro it an emphatic denial. I never mentioned my 'son's death to him o,» anybody else.
Afr. Dicker was proceeding wi'.h his speech when tlio Speaker reminded him lliat the lion, member for Franklin had. denied thal he mado the ¡statements, and hi» (Mr. Dicker) must accept the denial.
Mr. Dicker did so. \
Air. Payne also denied a-n^ recollection
dî "wing mentioned Mt. Dicker's name during Uio election, and Mr. Hoggins declared that ho 'hod never menqoned Mr. Dicker's name unon his platform.
Air. Dicker, proceeding, said that when he went to address meetings ho would got the best attendances, because he had been so well advertised that people would go to pee what sort of an nnimal he was. Thoy hoard a lot about British justice. If tíiey were to nlloxv a nocond tribunal in this "ouse. Uley might its well get rid of lill courts of justice, and ïeintro
duce the thumb-screw, tho rack, and other forma of torture. Ho wa» prepnrcd to resign Ids scat to-morrow if Ehe Gov- ernment would give a guarantee to con- tent rho son't, and lie xvould go to the people, and if ho did not ¡cet the samo proportion of votes that his party got nt the last elections he xvould never disgrâce this Chamber by entering it again. That offer was open lo any member for Frank- lin. Bul for him only to íesisrn and give to the Libarais, in au election, the rig.it to pul him out xvould be, to rob tho Labour people of "Choir propsr representa-
¡Mr. Dicker wa« proceeding to refer to tho Speaker, when a member of the Crov tiriiment side intervened '.nth the re- mark, Why bring Uro Speaker into "?
Mr. Dwkor: He represerts Franklin, nnd nIi>o lind a good deal to sny in con- nection with my case.
The Speakort_prder! The lion, mom- bor lias no righi lo bring'tlio Speaker into it. You know tho Speaker is not in a position lo reply, and I caution you not/ to ino my nnine.
">. Dicker: 1 am sorry. Anyhow,
The Speaker: 1 call the lion, member to order, and I wont'l do so again. If he persists in cnirrying on tho debate in a way be has no night to do I shall name
Mr. ¡Dicker: I don't wiall lo cany on a dolíate in a way I havo no right to do.
Tho Speaker: You have no right to mention my name in the discussion.
Mt. Dicker: Very good, M.r. Speaker. I will take on any mombor for Franklin.
Tho Pfomior: The bon. member knows that if undor the terms of his offeir one nionilior "so resigned on Ibis side you would both bo bound to come back. '
M.r. Dicker: No, I am going by the samo proportion of votes I got tbrec year-, bro. If I don't get my quoi« then 1 «ill resign. ¡Ho added thiif hc.hojied members would ceafo to uso the word "disloyal," because ho was as loyal as anybody, aco- plo were talking loiidly about bim, mid xvanlcd his blood, birt the feast xvns not yet. "Tho Mercury'' was paying him particular attention, and ho Jioped it would continue to do eo for tbo ne.tt couplo of .xeurs. Mpmbeis of tlie "ouse bad attacked bim liehlnd his book, but ho diel not want to bo bitter, and was quito propareel lo forgive thom, beciiiisc in foi giving one ro«c superior.
"Mr. Sheridan, asked for the Speaker's ruling or, to xvhether tho Premier mid the Houso must not accept Mr. Dicker'», denial, Hint being ¡Pai-liainoiittiry pinc tice and procedure.
Tho Speaker saiel bp .lind anticipated "mt objection, mid lind looked into it. Whilst it was xvell established thal an bon. member on the floor of .the House mint iieccpl the denial of another, he -»?us of opinion that the Milo did not ap- ply in the present inst-nneo, as the mem- ber for Friinkjiii (Mr. Dicker) wa*. Hiking the lionne ns a legislative body, mid not us mi individual member, to nctO|it his htiitciueiit, which ho also m.ielc betöre u eliii" constituted court oi' lnxv, and, despite which »-.tatpmeiit mado on oath, lie» «as found guilty of having uscel the word« willi which he was chaigcd.
Mr. Sliendmi next raised the question whether the Premier was in order in
moving a motion construing tbo chingo of prejudicing l-eertiitir-g into one of dis- loyally.
The Speaker ruled thal the Premier's motion was in order, especially in fact of tho conviction recoided.
Air. Fullerton said it was one of the most ferions matters thal Hie House had been iiskctl lo consider. The charge on xvhich Mr. Dicker hod bean convicledi amounted to disloyalty and a breach ol' his oath of allegiance. He lind been found guilty by a properly constituted court oi law. Beloro now innocent people lind beon con- victed, but not frequently. The evielenco wos tory strong against the member,
xvho said, in answer, tliat what ho did say xvas- "Erglantl has not, up to tlio present time, beon civ'led upon to iiro a. sbot in defence' of Aimlralin." Ho (Mr. Fullerton) could not see any serious distinction betxveen that and what ho xvas charged xvith,. inasmuch us exeiy shot nrcil1 by tho ¡British Navy in this war included firing in defonco of Aus- tralia. (Hear, bear.) Would ' Australia lie freo to-day, if ¡England und lier navy liad not fired many shots in her de tence? So on his oxvn showing Mr. ¡Dicker's statement xvas not, ni any rate, a loyal (statement. There was al-o evi- dence corroborated by independen! xvil nosses that ho also said-"I would just a« soon livo undor Gorman rule us un- der British rule." Mr. Fullerton review- ed the opinion of tbo Full Court on tho appeal, and baid bo regretted that ho wa* foi_id to tbo conclusion that Mr. Dicker did utter tho word« complained
M¡r. Whitsitt said lip regretted Mr. Dicker hael not seen his way to have retired gracefully from the Houso until tho next general election.
¡Mr. Dickor:'-I havo nindo nu offer.
¡Mr. "WJiitsitt: Yes. .but that would bo no tost. Mr. Dicker bad impugned the good'iiamo of ladies, who had no oppor- tunity of replying;.be should make thom outside, where ho could bo nioelo to prove thom. Ho did not take exception lo a man who hail not tho pluck to fight, but ho did io public mon going about saying tbal I hero xvero already sirltlcioiit mon at the ftont to put down Prii-.sian militarism l-Mxx-erdùig, .Mr. Whitsitt said that bei bad be."!! niolignetl by the Laid or of the Opposifc.on for li:« statement lnst session thut Australia ougbt to bo governed by thoir Al'.y (Japan) for ii while, and re- peated that xi'lint xviih the I.W..W. ami others who npp:cileel to the lower element ci mankind-as tbo Leader ol the» Opposi- tion did occasionally- they xvanleel a new Govciriiniont to foco their 0110111.«=. Mr. W.hits.tt then .read copio, s extrirUs Irom both "Tho Mercury" and "Daily Post" of his speech in I.I10 House roterrrd to by the Leaeler of tlio Opposition, lie lied tho grputcsl respeot for Mr. J/ybns's xut« and her inol.lier, but li? \x-ould sln'.e publicly xvhut ho thought ot Mr. Lyons for accusing linn (Mr. Whit bitt) ol disloyalty.
¡Mr. Lyons appealed to tho Speaker to knoxv if Mr. WliMsitt xvns ontil.ed to ad- dress the Howe in such a eontemptiblo way. Should ho be allowed to Mink so low ns to bring a mnit4.! 'wife into the discussion? Mt. Whitsitt ougbt to bo abox'C that. Thoy xvcio dirty, contompt j.ble tactics, and he (Mr. Lynns) asked to be protected from such dirty, con- temptible ladies' in the future..
? Mr. Whitsitt said th'at if ho bad said anything derogatory about Mr'. Lyons's wife or lim- mother ho xvould apologise a thousand limes.
Mr. Lyons: I do not xvant your a.pn]ogy. T.iio Speaker »said that personal mat- ters might well bo loft oin, altogether. (Hear, heir.)
Mr. Whitsitt, -raising his voice to a high pitch, said bo xvoultl deal xvith Mr. Lyons politically. He had accused him of disloyalty,
Several Mambra-: No.
Mr. Whitsitt said that thor» xvas n.x greater strain on .1 man's character than (ki bo disloyal, and it thoro aras one thing lie prided himself on it was 1rs loyalty. When ho xvas dead and.gone un epitaph would bo erected ovar his body, "Here H<« the body of an honest man," not "Here lies 0110 soil over anoth-pr." '
The Speaker: You must withdraw tluit. , Mr. Wihitsitt said he was not neces-
sarily referring to Mr. Lyons. (Laugh tor. )
Mr. Lyons: I think it a wnsle of time calling bim to coxier, Mr. Speaker. Do not botherabout bim. (Laughter.)' His «ipïbaph xvill bo orected in, ti lunatic
Air. Whitsitt said he crtainly resent -ed boing cnlled a elisloyol citizen. Had bo beon in the position of Mt. Dicker he would have resigned, and ho sboulel have resigned knowing the position 111 which tho members xvoio in xvho bael suf- fered borcavonients. Ho should liwve 10 signod had lui any respect for them.
Mr. Sherielan: Mr. Dicka? absolutely denies kilo charge.
Mu-. Cotton said that Mr., Dicker had ?complained that ].o_ti<_l capital bad boon glade out of lus case during tho elections. gie (Mr. Cotton) bael tinrvolled through the 'Hint* during the elections, and had. not "«aird n word by tho candidates aboul Mr. Dicken:. (Opposition Hissent.) It .had, lioxx-ievoi', been incontostably proveel that Mt. Dicker hod mudo uso of certain words,' and those remarks could only bo 'regarded as elisloyal.
v i\lr. Lyons: Tbo case wins beforo two courts, anti tho second time the question of ovielcnco was not denlt with. You are not ' familial' with, what tbo second court did.
Ma'. Mulcahy "viel ho liad been drawn into tho discussion much against his will, bul us choirmun of the Public Works Committee it xvas his duty -bp ex Slain what had taken place xvhen Mr.
ickar's enso was before 'the eourt. Ho (Mr. Mulcahy) resented tie imputation that thoro bael been a desire to make imlitjical capital out .of tlie case. If the Leader of tho Opposition had -been sit- ting in tho Premier's placo with Hie Irnoxvledgo tlint some member of Iho House had been tried loi using language of tho ^character charged against Mr. Dicker, which could only bo con»îlTiied as disloyal-if ho nod lliat knowledge to go
upon could he sit doxvn and "ko no ac- tion at all? What xvould bre people say to such inanity?
Mr .Ogden: It was you xvho drexv at- tention to it first.
Mt. Miiloahy said that tho attention of the' people had boen drawn to it all over Tasmania before it carne bsforo the Public Works Committee. Personally ho did not Think Mr. Dicker npprccat^d tho nature of Hie oath of allegiance which bo B.nod. Ho did not seem to lwixs undcr stootl it.
Mt. Dicken Do you?
Mr. Miilonhy paid that Mir. Dickor should know that thero was only ono Hag, and one flag only, xvhich he could owe allegiance to.
Mr. Dickeir: I never flap Hie flig,
.Mr. Mulcahy said neither did ho. There was only one »le in this war. The House had to vindicate the honour of Parliament, and, if necessary, purgo tho "ou^c of any mombor who bael done that which bo vim, not entitled' to tio under his oath of allegiance. Mr. Mulcahy then lefcrrcd to tlio events which led to t.ho mispensinn of tile sittings of the Public Works Committee, of xvhich Mr. Dickor iMd been ¡i momber. He sbnteel that immediately Mr. Dicker's con- viction lind been made known the committco lind ii duty to per- form ; thora was no othor coursa open to tlio members of tho committee, but to leport tbo oircumstancrs to tho ¡Execu- tive. Mr. Dicker had s^fiovvn a want ol genero"l.v lomani* n member of the com- mittee, Mr. "lovandee- Hem, and it xvns ungenerous of ¡Mir. Dic.'tor to unv that thero xvas anything unworthy in any action of the committee.. There was only one course «Inch n member in Mr. Dicker's position should take.
Mr. Dicker: You "caucussed" 1Jie whole question, and talked tlho momber» into submission the other niglit.
Mi-. Mulcahy: You spciii lo know all altout it. There wore 19 members of the Hoikp al the meeting, and there was absoluto unanimity all through, it: hod been suggested thal there xvas a constitu- tional difficulty in this matter xvhich would prevent Piu-liiimenf taking action in,the way ¡¿which it might otherwise do. It a British Parliament t-oulel no1 do that which it dosiied to do in u mat- ter of this kind, tihen it Si a« time that tlio Constitution was amended, so us to give Huge,, pnweis to meet the situution. (Ministei¡ni applause)
Mv. Ogden s,ud he «id not think any member of the Lnboui- party could be eliiirgcel with disloyalty. For his oxvn part, he xvns xvitii the Empire "cart unit soul. (Hoar, heal'.) He believed in tho British Empire, and believed Hie Empire hu»-, xxorth fighting for.
Mr. Dicker: ilcnr, hear.
Mr. Ogden s,u<l that (hoy were, how- ever, bieaking tluoiigh one'of Iho grail »il of British tiadilions by attempting to .ai|>ose n penalty in addition lo one al- ready imposed by a Briliah Omtrl of Jus tiie. (Opposition: Hear, beni'.) He (M'r. Ogden) did his r".nro of electioneering re- cently, and he found thnl from almost evorj platform in the Stale political capi- tal had boon made out of the incident concerning Mr. Dicker. \Vould anyone attempt lo .(leny it? The llev. Fiither »'1 Donnell, the toss mid onampioii ol Hie Liberal organisation, had said at ono ol tim meetings lo the electors, "li you x'otc for Mr. O'Molloy you will be voting for Hie Dickers, Hookers, and Heltons !" (Laughter.) Mr. Ogden then \xonf on to refer to the late Mr. Hoxvroyd, mid ex- pressed regret thal be had to do so.
Mr. Fullerton! Stick to those who can defend thomsolvts
Mr. Ogden said tiwi» he ul«o wished to icfer to .statements mado by Mr. Fuller Inn; but. It was more important, perhaps, to deal with the question of n dual trial.
When a case was concluded in a court, whether a man was proved guilty or inno- cent, that xvns the last of the case, and no other court could deal willi tiho per Min charged. Even assuming thut. Mr. Dickor xvas guillx-and he (Mr. Ogden) honestly believed ho had not uttrred t'ho worels, lx»cmi»o ho xvas n man willi com- mon sen»ie, and a man who would ul 1er Hie xvords would either be ii fool or n nindiiian-the House was ondenvouring lo retry a case xvhich had 'been heuid by ono of our pre-eminent: courts of jnsti"e. ile (.\lr. Ogden) asked members lo take into consideration the fact Hint tho court which beard the case 'was not iiiinllible.
Mr. Fullerton: Then, why did jou not appeal «n tho facts?
i Mr. Ogden: Mr. Fullarton thinks oi everything that will allow him to tullen on liis profession. (Laughter.)
Mr. Fullerton: According to the news- papers, the chiu-go xvns said to bo as good ns a charge of Oro.ison.
Mr. Ogdon : Why was he not charged with treason? 'Proceeding, ho said tluiti a person xvho . lind been found guilty oi disloyalty should be dealt with very severely, nnd no one xvith the slightest suspicion of disloyalty should be in n position of trust or responsibility. (Hear, hour.) In tho present instance they were attempting to persecuto n mom- bor after ho had already boon dealt xvith by a court of jiistko. Why, the Primo Min- ister had actually passed an Enabling Bill to allow two Oui mans lo keep thou- scats in tho CommonxvealMi Parliament. One was- a Mr. Hoitiii.inn. Ho (Mr, Ogden) believed thal that this xvns n political move puro and simple.
Mr. Cotton: No you don't.
Mr. Ogden said ho had soon articles in "Tho Morcuiy" almost daily xvhioh wore n disgrace. Only that day they lind practically told the Government that thov (the'Government) must take action, «nd. in another article, taid Hint tho Government had nock n big majority that ii wu.s reiilly moio dangerous than a small one. Therefore, if tho Government did toke some action certain (Uro conse qnonceh would fol(oxv! (¡Laughter.)
The Premier: Thal docs not trouble mo very much.
Mr. Ogden said he thought it did. The article.-, t-coiiicd to <-oy Huit Iheie xvould bo charges on tho Ministerial «ide of the
The Premier: Perhaps you will be lhere. (Laughter.)
Mr. Ogden s.ud that the renl enemy willi in out- gates xvere the ppople xvho wero conducting ii campaign of exploita- tion by taking pounds mid pounds out of the pockets of the people; firms and cor- porations, who were digging their hands ¡loop dqwn into Iho pockets of the wage earners. Ho xuslud to appeal to the i ca- sern of nicmbots, and to take, into coil;
side-ration tho fncl Hint Comrade" Dicker bad boon with them for n vum ber of years, and to ask themselves calm- ly whether his slntement should not be backed up. He (Mr. Ogden) had known Mr. Dicker for a number of years, and ho believed bun to be a man who xvould not utter the words attributed to bim. Wns it possible that members xvould nc copt the xvord of I wo travelling theatrical artistes before the word of n man they knew? He (Mr. Ogden) knew the in- dividual xvho had persuaded the .two girls to give information, and ho xvould not placo much reliante in him. (Laugh- ter.) Ho did not xvnnt to bay anything bad aboul him, nor could he sny .any- thing good of him; but there were rea- sons to influence 'the person in question to have a sly dij; at Mi. Dicker.
Mr. Dickor: Good reasons for it.
Mr. Ogden concluded by appealing lo members to retrain from trying n mun twice for the snnio offence.
Mr. Payne said he did not agree xvith the mombeis on the Opposition side, who had said the motion meant retrying Mr. Dicker; ho bud beon tri eel and found guilty, though the u»p of disloyal utfcer nnces xvns nat iiiclndwl in the offences such ns felony, mentioned in tho Consti- tution, for 'winch a me'nber lost his sent.
Mr. Shoobridge moved tho adjournment of the debato lill Tuesday, which xvns agreed lo. _