148 CHARLES STEWART PARNELL [1886
is an effort now being made in this country to do better by Ireland. If Mr. Gladstone, who has done so much for you, would only persevere on the old lines instead of taking this new step we would yet make everything right in Ireland.3
I remarked : ' Well, sir, I am glad that you think the new step will not lead to separation.'
Mr. Bright. ' Oh, no, I am not afraid of that.'
' Do you think that the present Irish representatives would sit in an Irish Parliament, and that they would adopt a policy of public plunder ? '
Mr. Bright. ' Well, I have said to you already that the Irish are very much the same as other people, and no people in the world would stand these fellows permanently. No; if you had an Irish Parliament you would have a better class of men in it. I quite understand that. I do not mean to say that you would have a better representation at once, for these fellows would try to hold on. But the man who is their master would shake them off one by one, and the people would support him. Mr. Parnell is a remarkable man, but a bitter enemy of this country. He would have great difficulties in the first years of an Irish Parliament, but he might overcome them. Yet many of these fellows hate him (smiling). The Irish hate all sort of government. He is a sort of government.'
1A popular government ?'
Mr. Bright. ' "Well, perhaps so, but even that may not save him in the end. I do not know how long he will be able to control these fellows.'
' Well, Mr. Bright, you are not afraid of a religious persecution, nor separation, nor public plunder. Why do you object to Home Eule ?'t you do not recognise that there