HC Deb 02 July 1925 vol 185 cc2793-4
53. Major-General Sir NEWTON MOORE

asked the Prime Minister whether, in view of his suggestion that he would welcome any proposals to assist industry and relieve unemployment, he will be prepared to appoint a Committee1 of the House to originate, examine, investigate, and submit for his consideration any schemes that might contribute to the solution of this serious problem?


My right hon. Friend doubts whether a Select Committee would be the most effective machinery for dealing with this matter. There is a Committee of the Cabinet which keeps it continuously under consideration in all its aspects, and the Government are always prepared to examine any scheme or suggestion that may be put forward.


Does not the right hon. Gentleman think that a scheme prepared after careful consideration by, say, a Select Committee of Members of this House, would be much better than the casual observations which are the best the Cabinet can do, with the amount of work they have?


I do not accept the hon. Gentleman's description of the normal character of Cabinet discussions or decisions, whether in the case of this Cabinet or any other, but, with the highest respect for this House, I assure hon. Members that a Select Committee is not the best body for this purpose.


On a point of explanation. I wish to say that I did not mean any disrespect when I made that remark.


Might I draw the right hon. Gentleman's attention to the fact that the Prime Minister asked for suggestions during the Debate, but that Members on this side had practically no opportunity, as practically the whole of the time was occupied by right hon. Gentlemen and others on the Front Bench?


I think my hon. and gallant Friend will agree that the answer I have given to him indicates that we shall welcome any suggestions from him or from any other hon. Members; but we do not think that a Select Committee is the best method.


May I ask to whom these suggestions should be submitted? This vague kind of way is no good for getting sound organisation.


I would suggest that the suggestions be made to the Prime Minister himself.


I take it that the last thing the right hon. Gentleman wants to stimulate is a stampede amongst the sheep?