(1) MR. JOSEPH CHAMBERLAIN set a precedent when he gave the name of “Tariff Commission” to a body created by him-self alone. Previously the word “Commission” had been generally applied only to bodies created by Royal or Parliamentary authority, and having power to call witnesses before them, to whom each member of the Commission could put questions. Where bodies had been created for the purpose of hearing evidence tendered by voluntary witnesses, as had been done with advantage by the Charity Organisation Society, they were usually called “special committees.” They are now often called “Commissions” in imitation of Mr. Chamberlain's action, and if it is clearly understood that they have no compulsory powers, there seems no harm in applying that term to them as denoting their method of action rather than the authority under which they act. In one respect they are not unlike many Royal Commissions. They consist largely of people who are known to have formed strong opinions on one side or the other, and accordingly their conclusions, if any sort of unanimity can be arrived at, are often in the nature of a feeble compromise, or, on the other hand, if both parties stand to their guns, are split into majority and minority reports. Even so, such reports may be useful as collections of facts and as presenting to the public materials for forming its own judgment.
(1) Problems of Population and Parenthood.
(Being the Second Report of, and the Chief Evidence taken by, the National Birth-rate Commission, 1918–20.) Pp. clxvi + 423. (London: Chapman and Hall, Ltd., 1920.) Price 25s. net.
(2) The Social Diseases: Tuberculosis, Syphilis, Alcoholism, Sterility.
By Dr. J. Héricourt Translated, and with a final chapter, by Bernard Miall. Pp. x + 246. (London: George Rout-ledge and Sons, Ltd.; New York: E. P. Dutton and Co., 1920.) Price 7s. 6d. net.
(3) The Venereal Problem.
By E. T. Burke. Pp. 208. (London: Henry Kimpton, 1919.) Price 7s. 6d. net.
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B., E. (1) Problems of Population and Parenthood (2) The Social Diseases: Tuberculosis, Syphilis, Alcoholism, Sterility (3) The Venereal Problem. Nature 105, 543–545 (1920). https://doi.org/10.1038/105543b0