Mr John Mendelson: May I urge my right hon. Friend to give an early reply—possibly next week at Business Question Time—to the request for a debate on foreign affairs in general? Is it not becoming more and more obvious that, because of the many items concerning the Common Market that the House has to debate, the impression is given that Britain has almost no other international relations at all? Since we...
Mr John Mendelson: There would have been no need to do it. We would have done it.
Mr John Mendelson: While the Foreign Secretary will, of course, receive support from everyone in this House and in the country in protecting the interests and, above all, the safety of British workers and managers out there, may I ask that he should not be carried beyond that into co-operation with, say, France or other Powers immediately to take action of a military nature that might be based upon the...
Mr John Mendelson: That is not good enough. On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. As we are debating the customs of and the aim to improve the procedures of the House, would it not be better to stick to the time-honoured tradition that if an hon. Member mentions another hon. Member and identifies him directly by reference to his constituency, he should give that hon. Member the chance to intervene?
Mr John Mendelson: Generally, I have a fair amount of sympathy with the points being expressed by my hon. Friend. But does he agree that recent events make it doubtful whether this doctrine is always correct? When we consider the reports of the Select Committees on the steel industry and on immigration and see the reactionary policies to which some of our colleagues committed themselves in unity with some...
Mr John Mendelson: The Secretary of State is laying great emphasis on the assertion which he certainly made, that if he could conceivably come to the view that there were radiological dangers he would not give planning permission. Surely that is putting the question the wrong way. What the House and the country have to know is that, beyond any reasonable doubt, he is completely convinced that there can be no...
Mr John Mendelson: Will the hon. Gentleman give way?
Mr John Mendelson: Steelworkers and management will want to know from the Opposition, in view of the amendment and what the hon. Member is saying, whether they want the BSC to go on modernising. Does the hon. Gentleman wish to be able to decide after 12 months that the process should be discontinued? Will he come clean on that point?
Mr John Mendelson: Perhaps I may try to help the hon. Gentleman. I do not know whether he was a Member of this House at the time when my right hon. Friend the Member for Huyton (Sir H. Wilson) once stopped a Budget debate in its tracks—a debate that was not properly continued—when the then Chancellor, Mr. Selwyn Lloyd as he then was, introduced a proposal to cut the rate on the highest income groups. The...
Mr John Mendelson: With respect, Mr. Murton, the term "trickster" is not an unparliamentary expression and it characterises—
Mr John Mendelson: With respect, Mr. Murton, we had an example only last week of an hon. Member who was persuaded to withdraw, although he had used an expression that was perfectly parliamentary. My right hon. Friend the Member for Fulham (Mr. Stewart) later pointed out that the hon. Member concerned was well within his rights. I am well within my rights. This is a financiers' proposal made by tricksters who...
Mr John Mendelson: I was using it as a collective term for those who would benefit by these proposals.
Mr John Mendelson: Certainly not. It was not.
Mr John Mendelson: I object to our being restricted in characterising proposals. The right hon. and learned Member for Surrey, East (Sir G. Howe) was not even the first to interrupt me. If I want to refer to the right hon. and learned Gentleman, he knows that I will do it without fear or favour. I have done so in the past. I was characterising a class of people who will benefit by these proposals.
Mr John Mendelson: Rentiers, financiers.
Mr John Mendelson: They are earning £80 a week, not £50,000 a year.
Mr John Mendelson: The hon. Gentleman wants to shift the burden to the poor. That is new Liberal policy.
Mr John Mendelson: My right hon. Friend made an excellent speech. We have not heard a speech such as that in years.
Mr John Mendelson: Why?
Mr John Mendelson: Why?