Mr David Mason: Is the hon. and gallant Member opposed to economy?
Mr David Mason: 32. asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer the loss on the recent purchases of gold by this country amounting to £50,000,000 at the now current price, calculated on the Gold Standard parity which prevailed prior to August, 1931?
Mr David Mason: If there is no profit or loss does that mean repudiating obligations and not restoring the pound?
Mr David Mason: Would the Financial Secretary tell us what he intends to do and what is the policy of the Government? Does he intend to restore the gold parity, which means a loss, or to repudiate? Will he answer that?
Mr David Mason: Is it not the case that no steps of this character can be taken without legislation which must be submitted to this House?
Mr David Mason: I do not often find myself in agreement politically with the hon. Baronet the Member for Barnstaple (Sir B. Peto), but I must confess that I do agree with the point that he has made in stating that many of the speeches this afternoon have not referred to the Bill at all. There is nothing in the Bill about Communism, and yet an hon. Gentleman opposite who spoke for his colleagues said that it...
Mr David Mason: Will the hon. Member for Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton) show me where it does?
Mr David Mason: All I can say is that I heard the hon. Gentleman, who took up a great deal of our time in making fun of the authors of the Bill, in insinuating all sorts of things against their motives, and in trying to reduce the Bill to ridicule. That was a gross waste of Parliamentary time and made no impression on those of us who try to understand the Measures brought before us and judge them on their...
Mr David Mason: Will it be possible, before we part for the Easter Recess, for the Prime Minister or the Foreign Secretary to give us any information about the negotiations with America regarding debts?
Mr David Mason: The House is not being asked to do that. It is being asked to give the Government power; that is quite a different thing.
Mr David Mason: The responsibility is the Government's.
Mr David Mason: I rise with great pleasure to second the Second Reading of the Bill. I usually confine myself in this House to questions of high finance, and it is a delight to change to the most delightful pursuit of supporting a Bill intended to further the gentle art of trout fishing. Lord Grey of Fallodon, a great authority, says that trout fishing develops not only patience but self-control and...
Mr David Mason: To benefit England.
Mr David Mason: What is to happen to the shipping industry?
Mr David Mason: Who is to issue the invitations to the World Economic Conference?
Mr David Mason: Will the right hon. Gentleman recall that declaration to the House?
Mr David Mason: With a great deal of what the last speaker has said, I am in agreement. I agree with the general principle of adherence to gold, but I cannot follow him when he refers to reflation. We hear a great deal about reflation, in the Press and elsewhere, but I have never yet been able to make out exactly what reflation means. As a general principle, I rejoice to find him so whole-hearted in his...
Mr David Mason: That is a very fair distinction, and I do not deny it. It shows that unless you have confidence the mere fact of an expansive monetary policy by increasing the circulation, which is generally described as inflation, will have no effect. It has been tried in America and was well described by Mr. Beckett, a great banker, the other day, and I submit that the whole history and experience of what...
Mr David Mason: I hope I shall be able to demonstrate to the hon. and gallant Gentleman that the policy I am advocating will have the very effect which he desires, and if I can do so I hope he will—I have no doubt he will—have the manliness and courage and good humour to admit it. We hear on all sides that this depreciated exchange is the very thing we want. Then if it is such a wonderful thing why not...
Mr David Mason: I did not say that.