Orders of the Day — Ways and Means.

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons on 28th April 1938.

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Photo of Hon. Hugh O'Neill Hon. Hugh O'Neill , Antrim

Certainly the Surtax payer does not find as much as the whole body of Income Tax payers, but that does not affect my argument. It is obvious that you will get more revenue if the income is distributed partly among very rich people. The whole structure on which our revenue depends can be easily upset. We hear a lot about confidence, and we know how easily confidence can be dissipated and how much successful finance depends upon confidence. We have seen the situation in France in recent years—a rich country, but a country in which, owing to various considerations, there has not been confidence of late, with the result that they have been going from one financial crisis to another. In fact, they never seem to be free from financial crises, and to-day they are being compelled to recognise that things which they thought and believed to be possible for their people cannot now be done without giving up the whole structure of their finance. Another case in recent years where the lack of confidence and extreme Socialist principles brought about financial chaos was the case of Mr. Lang in New South Wales. As we know, his financial policy brought about practically the bankruptcy of the State, and, as a result of that, a moderate form of government has, I think, for the first time in history, been returned in New South Wales on three successive occasions.