30 OCTOBER 1880, Page 3

Mr. Watk - in Williams, hearty Liberal as he is, might learn

something of wisdom in Irish politics from such a Conservative as Sir Michael Hicks Beach. In a speech delivered at Liver- pool on Wednesday, while saying much which was admirable about Ireland, he also said what was by no means so admir- able,—that "if while the law was being openly and grossly violated, the Government lost precious months over solemn State prosecutions, and failing in them, went to Parliament, with a Land Bill in one hand, and a Bill to suspend the Consti- tution in the other, he ventured to predict their speedy down- fall. They ought to speak out clear and straight at once to the Irish people, that above all things, life must be protected, and property made secure." We are surprised to find Mr. Watk-in Williams thinking so little of the invasion of the personal liberty of a whole people for the sake of restricting the criminal actions of a handful of men, especially when he knows how often, even in this generation, the experiment has been tried, has apparently succeeded, and has ultimately failed, and re- sulted in a recurrence of the very same mischiefs. There is just a trace of the political " Philistine " in the Irish part of Mr. Watkin Williams's speech.