Organisation (Supervision).

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Information. – in the House of Commons on 20th May 1942.

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Photo of Rear-Admiral Tufton Beamish Rear-Admiral Tufton Beamish , Lewes

asked the Minister of Information whether he will appoint and name in his Ministry someone to be continually responsible to him for supervising the whole organisation and thus preventing and bringing to light faults or long-standing irregularities, such as many months of endeavour have exposed?

Photo of Mr Brendan Bracken Mr Brendan Bracken , Paddington North

I find it hard to discover any meaning in my hon. and gallant Friend's rhetorical Question. Nor, unless I had the power to resurrect the Admirable Crichton, could I fulfil the hon. and gallant Gentleman's suggestions. I daresay the Ministry of Information has many faults. It has also plenty of virtues, but they blush unseen. I must tell my hon. and gallant Friend that I have no intention of appointing a perambulating bureaucrat to oversee the staff of the Ministry of Information. Our overseer is the House of Commons, and not a pinchbeck dictator

Photo of Rear-Admiral Tufton Beamish Rear-Admiral Tufton Beamish , Lewes

Does my light hon. Friend class me as a heresy hunter? Is he aware that if an irregularity such as has been exposed after months of effort had been laid at the door of a naval, military or Air Force officer, he would have been dismissed from his post? Can my right hon. Friend give an assurance that feminine influence does not seriously affect him in his Department?

Photo of Mr Brendan Bracken Mr Brendan Bracken , Paddington North

I must ask for your protection, Mr. Speaker, when the hon. and gallant Gentleman goes into these personal matters. I must tell him that I do not look upon him as a heresy hunter, but certain Members of this House have set a bad example in pursuing a number of aliens in this country, unfortunate exiles, and making the wildest allegations against them, without any foundation in fact, and it was those hon. Gentlemen whom I described as heresy hunters.