ANATION-WIDE campaign "to mobilise men of goodwill" behind the nationally-circulated "New Daily" newspaper which aims at giving a Christian lead in the affairs of Britain, was launched on Friday night with a meeting in London of nearly a thousand people of all creeds. It was launched midst the fiercest press battle this country has ever known.
"The New Daily's" proud boast is that it is free of Trade Union control, and owes no allegiance to any political
party or business combine.
It was born last year, April 25. Nearly 12.0(X) people put up the money to provide a printing works for it.
It has its own electricity generator. The Communist-con. trolled Electrical Trades Union cannot therefore silence it It is outside the Newspaper Proprietors' Association. and thus not subject to any ruling of the Press Lords. If it were a member of the Newspaper Proprietors' Association, it would have to suspend publication in the event of a strike or lock out in any of the other national dailies. That arrangement, we feel, is hardly in the puhlic interest and we cannot subscribe to it ", says the management of "The New Daily ".
The management states that it has standing arrangements abroad for the flying in of paper, ink and other materials should trade union action in holding up supplies (as happened during the last printing dispute) make it necessary.
It declares that all other national newspapers ate at the mercy of the printing trade unions", and points to the fact that the whole of the national Press in Britain was silenced for nearly a month by a strike in 1955.
On its attitude to Trade Unions, "The New Daily " states: " We recognise and appreciate the magnificent work done in the past by trade unions in the interests of those who were undoubtedly exploited. It is the tyrannies of trade unions—closed shops, restrictive practices, strike blackmail, demarcation disputes—that we oppose, not the movement itself.
"All our employees, editorial workers and printers, are paid wages as high as—and in some cases higher than—that paid to their respective trade union colleagues in other newspapers ".
On its policy, "The New Daily" declares that it is anti-Communist, anti-Fascist, "and also anti-Labour until the Labour Party discards in its entirety nationalisation and government by rigid control.
" We remain completely independent of the Conservative and Liberal Parties. We advocate equality of opportunity and a return to the belief in the personal responsibility of all citizens in good health."
A recur leader in "The New Daily " declared: " it is the duty of this nation towards itself and towards the world to rededicate itself to the service of God and of humanity, to reject the purely material concepts which increasingly govern our existence, and to reassert certain basic principles of conduct . . "
The editor and chairman of "The New Daily " is Mr. Edward Martell, chairman and managing director of "The Recorder " and formerly news editor of " World's Press News ". Aged 51 he was managing editor of Burke's Peerage. He served in the last war as a captain with the R.A.C. He was a member of the London County Council. 1946-49, He founded the Free Press Society in 1955, and the People's League for the Defence of Freedom. 1956. He gives his recreations as " lawn tennis, Sherlock Holmes and Father Brown ".
He dropped a bomb-shell on the publishing world earlier this week when he went into battle to stave off the " Daily Mirror's " bid for Odhams Press.
His aim was to form a consortium with at least £33m.—the value of the " Daily Mirror's " hid for Odhams—and see that sufficient shares were purchased to foil the "Daily Mirror ": The new shareholders, he maintained, supporting the ideals of "'I he New Daily ", would: (I) Press for the ThomsonOdhams merger to be abandoned.
(2) Offer the "Daily Herald" to the T.U.C., the Labour Party, the " Daily Mirror " or any other "left-wing organisation that wishes to go on losing money while running it (3) Make sure that "The People" (Odhams Sunday newspaper) does not overstep the bounds of public decency as it is sometimes prone to do ".
(4) Recommend that the Board adopt a more realistic attitude in its relations with the Trades Unions.
His purpose in launching this plan was four-fold:
(a) To baulk the "Daily Mirror" in setting up a virtual monopoly of mass publication media.
(b) To bring to an end " the farce of the Labour Party expecting its national daily newspaper to he financed and run by free enterprise while it continues to advocate the bringing to an end of free enterprise by nationalisation."
(c) To prevent " the pernicious influence of the ` Daily Mirror' type of journalism from spreading ".
(d) To enable Odhams " to take the lead among great publication houses in shaking off the present arrogant control of the printing industry ".
Says Mr. Martell: "One of the main reasons for establishing 'The New Daily ' was to fight monopoly. One of the most dangerous and far-reaching monopolies ever conceived in this country may come into being if the Mirror swallows Odhams. They will have a virtual monopoly of mass magazine and periodical publishing in this country. They will be able to dictate their own advertising rates, kill off one or other of kindred titles at will, and assert an undue influence over the minds of the great majority of the population through the editorial columns they control."