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The abuse of it, I grant, is also a degradation to mankind. But we have had a good trial of early closing, increased prices of all wines and spirits, with the result of greater importations and consumption even in a time of war and self-sacrifice.
This alone is further proof that people are determined to use and choose for themselves, and of the failure of restricted hours of sale or increased prices to prohibit. What I think would do much to minimise the use of such commodities amongst our returned soldiers is the wearing of the ''uniform'' alone.
No doubt those good men who have fought for us, and those who are going to fight, are beside themselves with excitement at times.
But the powers that be have the remedy in their own hands by making it punishable for the men themselves to be intoxicated while wearing the uniform, or for any person who supplies liquor to those wearing the King's uniform. - I am, etc. I.S.
Important cablegrams have recently been passing between the dominion and England in regard to the reinforcements of the Expeditionary Force, and Sir James Allen, immediately on his return to Wellington on Monday, commenced to review the manpower position, with a view to making an important statement on the subject of future reinforcements.
The dominion is in a very favourable position, as the casualties on the western front have been much fewer this season than were anticipated. There is no knowing what the next two months may bring forth, but New Zealand is well guarded against the contingency of heavy casualties.
Postal service pioneer
Mr W. T. Ward, who has held the position of chief postmaster in Christchurch since July 1, 1915, and who retired on superannuation on June 30, entered the postal and telegraph service on June 1, 1870, at Bluff.
The department was then in its early youth, and the conditions in both branches were vastly different from what they are now. The Java cable and overland line from Port Darwin were not then in existence, and press news, telegraph correspondence, and mails accumulated in Melbourne for dispatch to New Zealand by the earliest opportunity, and great batches reached the first port of call (Bluff or a West Coast port) for dispatch to their destinations.
There were then two press agencies in New Zealand - Reuter's and the Press Association, or its equivalent - and as the telegraphy regulation was ''first come first served'', the whole of the first press summary lodged was sent. It can readily be imagined that the most strenuous efforts were made by the representatives of these agencies to get in first.
This resulted in the evolution of the finest oarsmen and boat racing to be found anywhere. In those days Bluff was a famous whaling station, and possessed highly efficient crews and first-class boats. Picked crews and boats were selected by the rivals, who were always on the qui vive for the steamer.
- ODT, 5.7.1918.
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