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Overseas Resources Development Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 6th November 1947.

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Photo of Hon. Oliver Stanley Hon. Oliver Stanley , Bristol West 12:00 am, 6th November 1947

Hon. Members should not be quite so enthusiastic about having incurred the approval of Lord Beaver-brook. It is comforting while it lasts, but it is apt to be transitory. Let them ponder the sad case of the Foreign Secretary. Only a month ago, owing to a sentence which the Foreign Secretary used in a speech, a sentence the meaning of which has not yet been revealed to the world—to anyone with the possible exception of the Foreign Secretary himself—he was inducted by Lord Beaverbrook into his private Valhalla of statesmen. But only last Sunday, I regret to say, he was expelled again, and that Valhalla is to be left once more to the secure but solitary occupation of my hon. Friend the Member for Orpington (Sir W. Smithers). If I were an hon. Member opposite I should not go too far in claiming the support of the "Sunday Express" on a question in regard to which the right hon. Gentleman has now given a denial.

Of course, nothing could be more unfair and ungenerous than this so-called comparison. The right hon. Gentleman, as a matter of fact, has in his own speech, used so many arguments that I should have used myself that I am prepared to leave it there. I would only add that in all this talk about comparisons, no mention is ever made of the Colonial Development and Welfare Act, which was passed when I was at the Colonial Office. Perhaps it is wise not to make a comparison between that Act and this Bill, between an Act which represented a £120 million free gift of the taxpayers of this country to be used exclusively for the benefit and development of the Colonies themselves, and a Bill representing £150 million which is to be used on a commercial basis primarily for the benefit of the consumers in this country.