Cab 195/19 cabinet minutes

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Can’t press this too far.
Actually, on last increase there was not much fuss.

Timing now is perhaps the most important.

* Let us have a simple table showing effect on different contributors.

Real ques. : shd. we be putting too much pressure on this system of spreading cost of N.H.S. between contns. & taxes.

S.Ll. Never a good time to raise things. Easy to p’pone.

Separate Bills can be considered. Tho’ it wd. still have to come in before Xmas if date of effect is to be April.

Hail. Can’t we know what economies M/H. intends to get.
P.M. What kind of measures?
E.P. Almost any measures designed to reduce expre. cd. be represented as a reduction of service.
D.E. What effect on economy? [Exit H., M., D.S., K
P.M. More diff. to increase stamp after economies in Service.
K. Cd. we have legn. in May/July taking effect in October?

This wd. avoid diffies. of timing brought out by J.B.C.

E.H. Effect on man – much better to get it all over at once.
E.M. Yes : all experience shows that.
E.H. Even easier to justify if you look at increasing cost of Social Services as a whole – cf. Education, which must fall on taxpayer.
J.H. Apl. is a pretty good time qua. wage increases.
P.T. What about 1/6d. on stamp and abolish prescription charge – also given private patients their drugs.
Discussion to be resumed.

5. N.H. Service. Drugs for Private Patients.

E.P. Pressure for this is increasing.

R.A.B. Yes. Wd. like to get it out of the way.

R.M. Runs contrary to all said on Item 4. How can you now put up this cost of the Service?
E.P. Pressure for this will increase if contn. is raised.
Ch.H. Can’t settle this until we know what we intend on stamp.
D.E. Strongly opposed to this. V. bad effect on doctors. Dividing patients.

Pressure to move to private practice.

Ch.H. Agree on merits. But already discussed with B.M.A. – gone v. far. 1949 pledge. This will give a new M/H. a good start with B.M.A.
J.M. If we took D.E.’s view, we shd. have to make our position plain.
P.T. Yes – and soon.
R.A.B. I favour it, on merits.
H.B. No way of avoiding it.
Ch.H. Still hope it can be combined with something else. Awkward to present £2½ m. increase alone.
There is no sound medical or social case for this – it is solely financial and expediency.
Discussion to be resumed.

C.C.57(60) 8th November 1960

1. Foreign Affairs. [Enter M.R.

a) Congo.
H. Debate in U.N. beginning today. Kasav. will be there – recognised by Sec.Genl. as the 30 commrs. are not in N.Yk. this accepted by Africans on the spot. Disintegratn. threatening – K.’s opportunity. U.N. attitude to commrs. is prob. due to fear tht. African States mght w’draw their troops.
Debate will reflect objns. to return of B. technicians & demand to allow Parlt. to re-assemble. Latter wd. mean return to Lubumba.

A majority resoln. in favour of Kasav. wd. steady posn. (but wd. prob. be opposed by some Africans, incldg. Ghana and Nigeria). Favour this, accepting risk in ( ). Reasonable chance of getting a majority. Proper repn. in U.N. wd. be a gt. help.

I.M. Believe most African States would oppose : a serious matter : but on balance I favour it.
H. Kasav. is at least properly elected President.
P.M. Cd. prs. be represented as tempy. expedient while enquiry into constitution is made.
H. Second is fall back posn. if resoln. is lost.
S.Ll. Cd. you not have both, simultaneously.
P.M. Temporary diffies. with Ghana etc. are outweighed by risk of chaos &

R. intervention. But try to combine two plans.

b) Egypt.
H. Hope we can exchange names of Ambassadors on 1/12. Hope we can keep ques. of Consulates separately.
c) Iceland.
H. Hope of agreement slightly more favourable to us than 12 miles.

Anderson is more reasonable.

d) W. Indies : Bases.
I.M. Talks went v. well. Communiqué to be issued tomorrow. U.S. have bn. v. reasonable. Bi.lateral discns. with W. Indies will follow in 2 wks. in Trinidad.

2. Federation of Rhodesia etc.

P.M. Corrce. with Welensky v publn. of private assurances. Offered to present Wh. Paper : but drew attn. to dangers of breachg. rule v. publn. of confidential exchanges. W. has now said he does not press for

publn.. On the whole, I’m content – tho’ imputns. of bad faith may continue here.

Will tell Hail. what to say in H/L. debate on 16/xii – when I know what Wel. says. P.M. to discuss with Hail and D.S.

3. Parliament.

R.A.B. Business for next week.

4. Floods.

P.M. £3 m. was not used on last occasion : cd. be used now.
S.Ll. National Fund a) Wd. decrease local subscriptions b) wd. discourage insurance, activities of River Boards etc. Prefer therefore to support local funds.
H.B. People’s immediate needs are being met, in cash or kind. Big claims on a fund mature much later.
Agree with S.Ll., on balanace. Tho’ wd. be willing to defer final decision for a time. Don’t accept all S.Ll.’s arguments : but doubt wthr. much response wd. be f’coming for a national fund.

5. National Service.

H.W. Least publicity the better.
J.H. Parlt. must be informed.
P.M. Wd. answer to PQ suffice? Omitting 2 final paras. of draft.
J.H. Ungracious?
H.W. Awkward for those still serving.
C.S. Better to defer the thanks until the last man is out.
P.M. Anyway, don’t have 3rd para.
Ch.H. Stet 4 in para. Shorten 2nd and 3rd paras. And give it as Written Answer.
M.R. I agree.
Agreed : P.Q. for Written Answer on lines proposed by Ch. H. J.H. and Ch. Whip and Ch. Hill to settle terms of reply.

6. Liquor Licensing Bill.

R.A.B. Ready to accept plan of H.B.
J.M. So am I – tho’ it will increase my diffies.

7. Constitutional Development of Commonwealth.

D.S. Nothing to add to my memo. I welcome variety.
I.M. a) Begin to think Mauritius will be stronger candidate – 600.000 and v. rapidly growing popn. Wd. add them among ‘possibles’.
b) Wd. like authy. to show Rpt. to Govrs.
P.M. Shd. we tell them now we have accepted it? Mght be thought we were trying to cut short discn. Put it on Agenda, merely.

C.C.59(60) 25th November 1960

1. Foreign Affairs. [Enter Att.G., E.Boyle., M.R.

(a) Congo.
H. Kasaumbu seated in U.N. K. has returned to Ghana – where troops of various nations are at odds. Next step : to get U.N. authies. on spot to co-operate with K. & his repves.
(b) Laos.
Situatn. is getting worse. Civil War. Communists likely to make ground over this.
(c) Italy.
Talks satisfactory. Sympathetic to our desire to draw closer to Six.

If we cd. find way over horticulture, they wd. support us in approach.

P.M. They are stronger, economy being more industrialised & exports being now more industrialised products than were before. They are more confident. Such influence as they have will be helpful to us.

Fanfarin has more courage than Sequi.

(d) United Nations.
H. Resolution on Colonialism. O.G. wants us to seek amendments wh. wd. enable us to vote in favour. Doubtful if this is right – any resoln. likely to include dates for independence.
I.M. Agree : better have extreme resolution which we can vote against – or abstain.
H. Diffy. is tht. our friends (U.S. and Austr.) are urging us to take O.G.’s line.

2. Parliament.

R.A.B. Business for next week.

Lord Stansgate – succession. He has put in a memorial. In view of public interest, I think that we had better refer it to some Select Cttee. We favour reference to Cttee. of Privileges. Att.G. is a member.

(His petition is debatable : but opinion wd. be hostile if we sought to kill this summarily in initial debate.)
Att.G. Petition is addressed to contention tht. he is still Member of H/C.

This and his supporting arguments can be summarily dismissed.

If this is referred to Cttee. it wd. be a waste of time : for H/C.

Cttee. can’t consider wthr. an individual is a member of H/Lords.

Improper for them to do so. Tho’ I, in course of my duty, cd. properly advise H/C. that he is not a member of H/C.
K. Agree there is nothing in his case, under existing law.

Agree also that it is for H/L. to say wthr. a man is a Peer.

R.A.B. H/L. point cd. be met by statement in the Report that this is a matter for H/Lords.
P.M. Ques. is wholly one of tactics.
R.A.B. Debate is inevitable. On basis of the petition only, bound to be unsatisfactory. On basis of report by Sel. Cttee. cd. be satisfactory.
Hail. Reference to a Cttee. of H/L. would not in itself breach H/L. privilege.

No substantive met by H/C. until House Votes on report of a Cttee. And privilege of H/L. can be preserved then.

Att.G. No : for Cttee. will have to consider validity of his document of renunciation.
Hail. Cttee. can (and shd.) refrain from pronouncing on that.
P.M. We must prevent this developing into great argument on ques. wthr. law shd. be changed.
M.R. Opinion in Party is shaky on this.
Agreed – as proposed by R.A.B.

3. General Grant in Scotland.

J.M. We want a margin ot £¼m in each year – over figures in memo.
E.B. Prefer to hold to figures in memo. Scotland is doing v. well.
J.M. I will do my best to meet Ty. wishes.
Approved – subject to considn. of point made.

4. Egypt : Financial Settlement.

E.H. Estimate of total claim is £100 m. – not more.

Leave £7½ m. : expect to recover £1 m. of that.

Interim (second) payment ought to be made now – claimants shd. have the money we are getting in. We paid low claims at high level on first out payment : we ought now to give some benefit to higher claimants.
On my proposals we shall have only £6 m. left for final payment. We shall be pressed to make Ty. contn. then. We have always said this was not excluded and S.Ll. is sympathetic.

My plan wd. ratify all save small claimants. Wd. cost only £1 m. to pay them out. But that wd. encourage larger claimants to believe they wd. get more fr. Ty. than is likely to be available.

Commission, in assessing claims, has taken a/c of loss of profits, employment etc. S.Ll. wonders wthr. this cd. be excluded in future.

Doubt if we cd. change basis of assessment in mid stream.

S.Ll. wd. also like to discriminate, in final payment, between Egyptians and sequestrated. Doubt if we cd. do that. Pressure will be to pay more, not less, to sequestrated.
E.B. No comment. Obliged for F.O. considn. of Ty. suggns., but don’t press them.
K. Can L.O.’s look at the draft order. It will not go to Legn. Cttee.
H. i) Cd. we not get small claimants right out of the way – in the hope that larger claimants wd. ignore their posn. in final settlement.

ii) Need we recover all the loans.

E.H. We can consider that in individual cases.
P.M. Avoid any general statement on that until final settlement.
E.B. S.Ll. agrees : get this second instalment done : reserve other ques. for the final settlement.

5. Channel Tunnel.

E.M. Para.3(c) is important. E.P.C. rejected this.

How approach French? How deal with pressure group here?

We must not arouse expectations.
R.A.B. I’m against Tunnel : don’t encourage it.
H.B. Must have a low priority.
H.W. Immense expenditure – for v. small benefit. Bury it.
P.M. Para.8. French will exploit reference to “difficulties” & say we are smothering it. Can’t we play it slow and quiet.
E.H. Yes : thro’ Embassy in Paris.
P.M. Say : we’re ready to discuss when they are.
E.M. Pretty sure French Govt. don’t favour it.
6. Commonwealth Immigrants.
R.A.B. Over 11.000 now unemployed. And 43.000 immigrants this year up to date. Problem has worsened since memo. written serious considn. needed of possibility of action next year.
Hope therefore tht. Cttee. can be re-constituted.
I.M. i) Enlarge title of Cttee. – not Colonial only.

ii) Adminve. action won’t do much more. We shall have to face ques.

wthr. we legislate or not.
Hail. If we do act, try to do so where there is no panic about it.

Act in a period of calm.

J.H. May be rate of 100.000 a year soon. Quality is dropping. Placing is more difficult.
E.M. B.T.C. are positively recruiting them – in W. Indies.
Alp. Indians are w’drawing their restrictions on emigration to U.K.

Also outflow of Asians from E. Africa.

I.M. “Quiet time” : there will never be one for the other countries.
Agreed : Re-constitue Cttee. as “Commonwealth Migrants Cttee.”

7. Covent Garden Market.

C.S. Support memo.
E.M. W’draw my objections.

C.C.60(60) 29th November 1960

1. Economic Situation. [Enter M.R.

S.Ll. Immediate ques. – imbalance of payments. Repns. to G. (U.S. and U.K.) have produced no effect. Risk is effect of this on new Congress who may press for reciprocal arrangements. Anderson concerned at Ford deal, as likely to spark off pressures. I am therefore writing to Anderson to impress on him what we have done in oversea aid etc. & effect of restricting U.S. policy.
Germany. Delay in aiding Yugoslavia. Un-readiness to aid Jordan.

Examples of lack of understanding by Adenauer.

May be chance of pressure behind scenes of G. at N.A.T.O. Mtg.

Internal sitn. in U.K. – para.11. Brought various figures up to date.

Govt. expenditure. V. nearly out of control because of unwillingness in Parlt. & public to accept financial discipline. Must aim at greater control in 1962/3.
On credit side – D.I. policy is working out : investment going well, reserves satisfactory (£6-8 m. up for Nov.)
Immedte. steps – 1) rate, 2) special deposits, 3) h.p.
My advice is v. action on 2: no pressure likely before Feb. anyhow.

On 1., on external posn. alone, cd. have bn, lowered last week : but effect at home runs other way.

On 3, advice is to stand firm : lest relaxation appear to be green light.

Exports. Don’t see what more Govt. can do, save in credit field perhaps on medium term credit.

Wages. F.B.I. blaming Govt. for not standing firm. Actually they give in first, when labour is scarce.
Under-emplt. Motor industry is holdg. its labour force on short time.

Shortage of labour is still our problem – not re-employment.

R.M. Endorse general picture.

Imports continue high (90% = raw materials and plant for industry).

Increase £340 m. of wh. only £35 m. was consumer goods (first half of ’60) cpd. with same period of ’59.
Exports will continue poor because of U.S. depression and slackening in W. trade.
Little more to do. Credit insurance has bn. made easier : a little more to be done. But main diffy. is credit (Banks).
H.P. controls – uncertain effect. This time disproportionate effect on motor industry & consumer durables. Point made in memo.

Car makers talking themselves into depression. Our restns. on them are not helping b/p. My proposal wd. be useful psychologically.

M. Figures are distorted. Exports reduced by tally clerks’ strike. Low now : unduly high next month.
H.P. is now part of our way of life. But 2 yrs’ credit is about right. Not sure it wd. be right to extend it.
Avoid “whistle-stop” action. That is what impacts industry.

Serious sitn. because of recessions in U.S./Canada. But disposed to try to ride it out – save prs. for reducing B. rate.

H.B. I opposed increasg. it in summer. Risk now in reducg. it. But wd. try to find a moment for that – & do no more. V. diff. matter of judgement.
H.W. Steady rise in c/l. index against large stack-up of wage claims.

Risk of getting back into that cycle.

If, in same sector, Govt. cd. stand firm (w’out heavy cost) it wd. help to steady that situation.
H. Fulbright confirmed Anderson. Diff. time with Congress – pressure for restrictive policies.
x. Our costs in G. Cd. G. deposit in sterling amount equivalent to those costs – as fund for aid to underdeveloped.

Overseas expre. : Chequers decns. may help : but we shall need a little more money for propaganda etc. in cold war.

x. Export orders – E. orders – cd. be increased, if credit ceiling were raised.
Stop liberalisation plan from going further.
Can x. and x. be examined?
K. Exports. We must exhort – w’out fear. Credit needs examn.

Tax allowances for travellers.

Govt. expenditure. Domestic. Nice ques. now wthr. public needs will be better met by increased public expenditure or reduced taxation.

List in para.14. Can any of these needs be denied? 75-90% of electorate want to see them met.

Liberalisation. Look at it again in light of attitude of new U.S. Govt.
I.M. i) Wage price spiral. Para.11 is not too worrying – save by contrast with

remarkable record since ’58. Wages are more serious : agree with H.W. – but opportunity unlikely to arise unless T.U. plays cards badly. Govt. have less chance to give lead than private sector thinks.

ii) Exports are key to situation. Look carefully at R.M.’s proposal on

h.p. Small restraints have never worked well. Disposed to do nothing or more. Extension of period alone mght do more harm than good psychologically.

D.E. Serious weakness in our economy – increased, not caused, by recession elsewhere. Our rate of growth is insufficient. W’out more, our share in oversea market will drop. When N.Z. etc. liberalise we don’t get our proportionate share of increase of imports.
Root cause : people are spending too much – not saving enough.

No sufficient national incentive to work. U.S. similarly are showing less rate of growth – again because no dynamic national ambition.

W’out national impulse to grow, we can’t remain competitive.

Wages and salaries go up annually.

Consumption is too large a part of people’s aim and ambition.

We must try to find something which people will think is worth working for. I.M.’s Commonwealth policy in framework of cold war.

P.T. Dpt. Ministers press all accelerators & Ch/Ex. applies brakes. Odd way to drive the economy.
Remedies. Agric. : see no health in producg. expensively here what we can buy cheaper from abroad.
Real problem : wages. This year’s increase is equivalent of a new Navy!
x. To make a stand : we shd. have to stiffen engineering employers &promise to back them to limit.
Expenditure : no saving short term : but policy decns. now cd. secure

y. big economies further ahead. Re-appraise policies in long term.

I wd. favour action on x and y.
J.H. Wages. S.Ll.’s forecast is at extreme. May be 5% average, not 6%.

Private sector determines rates, not Govt. – and mainly because of shortage of labour. A tough policy on wages means telling employers to be tough. Are we to face strike in engineering with exports our main problem?

Lack of fluidity in labour. Not only because motor indy. are holding on. Machine tools won’t take men on when they know they’ll lose them again when cars pick up.
Exports real nub. Is it true we can do no more save on credit. Need for more constructive support to export drive – eg. relief on taxation, direct Govt. aid etc. Other countries are cheating on G.A.T.T. : shall we not have to do the same? Shd. we not know what others are doing – either to stop them or to do same ourselves?

Exhortn alone & credit facilities is not enough.

D.S. Must give longer term & be more free with credit.

Tax relief for exports – on balance I doubt if it would help. But cd. we give it for bldg. up export organisation overseas? Less difficult sales organn. rather than price – or as well as.

Wages policy. Can we not find some means of recurring order in the system. Legn. to enforce agreements – penalties on T.U.’s for breaking them. Arbitration. Given right moment, country wd. welcome such Govt. action. Are we ready to take it, when it comes?
D.E.’s point on immigration. Cd. we develop new spirit of commercial enterprise in C’Wealth? Try it at P.M.M.?
Some sacrifice fr. Defence Budget wd. be justified to increase oversea informn. work. Our need now is for another £2 m. That & more cd. be spent on our defence scare.
E.M. Need for enterprise. Shipbldg. etc. – after 20 yrs. of prosperity, our shipping interests are now buying their ships abroad. Our industry is not competitive – esp. in older industries. Mainly because we have made it too easy for people to live. cf. effect of our way of life on imported Italians – they go sloppy in a year.
Sooner or later, we need a show down with labour. £100 m. over line for rlways : cd. be eliminated in 2 years with proper work study. There are 100.000 men on rlways who are not needed.
Is K. right – if people were asked if they wd. prefer lower taxation.

Look at tax dodging : or work dodging to evade tax. Tax structure is hostile to incentive.

To avoid recurrent crisis – people shd. pay more for necessities and less in taxation. Review policies on that basis. Also adjust method of taxation so as to avoid calculation of tax avoidance. W’out relief in taxation we have no hope – eg. of increasg. exports.

Taxation is crucial.

C.S. Agriculture. Can it increase its contn. to b/payments? It cd. produce more than 66% of our needs. But wd. mean increased subsidy because of more units & also lower market prices : unless we restricted imports. (If we did restrict imports, gains to b/p. wd. be considerable.) But, w’out restn. of imports, we cd. expand beef, pigs and grain : imports wd. be inhibited : £30-40 m. gain on b/payments at extra subsidy cost of £20-30 m. This on basis of only moderate increase in prodn. We cd. do much more, with increased subsidy.
J.M. Wages. Clyde : tough line by employers killed a strike (lithgows) : they gave good publicity to effect of contd. strike or increased wages on future for the men. Cd. this be done more generally.
What people want. I agree with K. These needs are more important than reducing taxation. Roads, schools, educn. health – all preferred to lower taxation, esp. among the young. But can’t say at what point level of taxation dulls incentives.
H.B. Are people so soft? If they were, wd there be such pressure for house purchase. Nos. wanting it all growing.
R.A.B. My view : don’t do much on house front now. Too much depends on developments abroad – N. Amercia, Europe. Wait for a time. E.g. don’t mess about pre-budget. Immedit actions. Limit to b. rate – costs in Germany – no action on h.p. pro-tem. Hold in reserve quantative limitn

x) of imports – which was v. effective in ’51. Hope it won’t be regarded as out of date. In refn to US it cd. be no more than stand-still on liberalisation. Avoid impression of crisis. Reserve manoeuvres for budget. Be ready for more dramatic action in ’61.

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