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CURRENT EVENTS.

COMMERCIAL FRAUDS.—The appointment of a committee of leading New York business men who are connected with companies doing an annual business of more than $4,000,000,000 to co-operate with public officials in uncovering commercial frauds and in punishing those guilty of them was announced by United States Attorney Emory R. Buckner at a luncheon at the Hotel Astor, given in his honor by the National Association of Credit Men and the New York Credit Men's Association, on the 18th of last month.

Mr. Buckner told his hosts that his office was anxious to co-operate with them in the line of public duty, to waste no time in endeavouring to accomplish the impossible, but to discover through conferences, discussions and close personal contact, the easiest and most expeditious manner in which to check the practices of those who prey upon business.

RECOVERY OF MONEY PAID FOR TAXES.-An action has been taken against the United States Government by Mrs. Dorothy Caruso Ingram, as administratrix of the estate of her husband, Enrico Caruso, for the recovery of $50,000 which she alleges was paid under protest as income taxes for the years 1918 to 1920. The tax was claimed on income derived from the sale of phonograph records made by Mr. Caruso in the shape of royalties. The only question the courts will have to decide will be whether Mr. Caruso, a native of Italy, was a permanent resident of the United States. If it is shown that he was a non-resident and was just sojourning here, the tax was improperly collected. The courts will be called upon to say whether the maintenance of rooms here year after year made Mr. Caruso a permanent resident.

FELLOWSHIPS IN INTERNATIONAL LAW.-The Division of International Law of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace announces that fellowships in international law will be awarded for the academic year 1925-1926, according to the following regulations:

1. These fellowships have been established by the Trustees of the Endowment for the purpose of providing an adequate number of teachers competent to give instruction in international law and related subjects, as an aid to the colleges and universities in extending and improving the study and teaching of those subjects, which are daily becoming increasingly of more interest and importance in the conduct of international affairs. Only those men and women who intend to aid in this work are, therefore, expected to apply for these fellowships.

2. Two classes of fellowships will be awarded (a) Teachers' Fellow. ships, and (6) Students' Fellowships. Applicants should indicate the class of fellowship for which application is made.

(a) Teachers' Fellowships shall be awarded to teachers in inter: national law or related subjects. At least one year of previous teaching

in international law or related subjects, or its equivalent in practical experience, is required. The stipend attached to such fellowships shall be $1,000.

(b) Students' Fellowships shall be awarded only to graduate students holding the equivalent of a bachelor's degree. The stipend attached to such fellowships shall be $750.

3. In general, a knowledge of the elements of international law and a good knowledge of history are necessary, and it is desirable that at least two modern languages, be furnished. Applicants who hold a degree in law or who have otherwise acquired a knowledge of law as a system, will be preferred in the award of fellowships. Other special previous preparation will also be considered.

4. The Fellow shall devote his entire time to the study of international law and related subjects; and no employment may be engaged in during the period covered by the Fellowship. Courses of study must be submitted to and approved by the Committee.on Fellowships, and the Fellow shall report to the Committee at such times during the year as he may be directed.

5. The stipends are payable in quarterly instalments upon compliance with the regulations, communicated with the awards, governing the submission of reports and evidence of work.

6. Ordinarily five fellowships in each class are awarded each year. A holder of a fellowship may apply for a fellowship for a succeeding year.

7. Each applicant is required to furnish a signed photograph, showing the date when it was taken.

8. Applications will be received up to March 16, 1925. Application blanks will be furnished upon request to

THE COMMITTEE ON INTERNATIONAL LAW FELLOWSHIPS,

2 Jackson. Place, Washington, D.C.

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New SCHOLARSHIPS AT TORONTO.—Sir James Aikins, Lieut.-Governor of Manitoba, and President of the Canadian Bar Association, has presented $5,000 to the University of Toronto to provide an endowment for annual scholarships in English and literature in the faculty of arts. Sir James' gift will be known as the Aikins Scholarships."

AN UNCONSCIOUS SATIRIST.-A Saskatchewan judge recently addressed the Canadian Club of the town where he was holding court, took as his subject “ The Majesty of the Law." He dealt with his topic under three heads, namely, criminal law, quasi-criminal law, like the Saskatchewan Temperance Act, and civil law. The local paper in its next issue declared the address a master-piece. The speaker, said, had arranged his subject matter in three divisions, namely, “criminal law, crazy criminal law, like the Saskatchewan Temperance Act, and civil law."

That editor's talents are lost in a small town. As a mere improver

of the text he ranks with the Irish printer in whose proof sheet a wellknown passage in “Lalla Rookh began thus

“There's a power of roses by Bendemeer's stream,”

and with his Scottish rival, under whose judicious emendation Sir Walter Scott's apostrophe to his native land appeared in this form

“Oh Caledonia! stern and wild,

Wet nurse for a poetic child!"

THE CANADIAN BAR

REVIEW

VOL. III.

TORONTO, JUNE, 1925.

No. 6

THE PRIVY COUNCIL.1

In point of history, the Privy Council, as a judicial tribunal, is, perhaps, unique among existing courts, and that history has, from its beginning, an absorbing interest for the student of constitutional law. But it is with the founding of the great colonies and plantations in America, at the beginning of the seventeenth century, that the Privy Council, charged with the supervision of the overseas dominions of the Crown and invested with the authority of the Crown, legislative, executive and judicial, over the colonies, assumes a capital importance in relation to the evolution of government on this continent. Long before, the supreme judicial authority, within the narrow seas, had passed to Parliament-an authority which eventually became exercisable by the House of Lords exclusively, just as the House of Commons successfully appropriated' the Power of the Purse, the exclusive authority to levy taxes.

Through the seventeenth and eighteen centuries, down to the separation of the thirteen colonies, the judicial authority of the Privy Council was regularly exercised, principally in deciding appeals from the colonial courts, along with a legislative and executive authority which made itself felt chiefly in the disallowance of colonial legislation. These judicial activities possess in one particular a special historic interest for lawyers. The Privy Council, in its judicial capacity, did not hesitate to disregard--that is to say, to treat as invalid and void—the ordinances and statutes of colonial legislatures, when those ordinances and statutes exceeded the ambit of the powers committed to the legislature or when the legislature had failed to observe some inhibition found in the charter or other

1

Portion of a speech delivered by the Right Honourable Mr. Justice Duff, P.C., at the Annual Dinner of the Ontario Bar Association, 22nd May, 1925.

20_C.B.R.-VOL. III.

instrument of colonial government. This is the first practical application to the statutes of a legislature of the doctrine which, in modern times, has come to be known as the doctrine of ultra vires; and, acting on the precedent set by the Privy Council, it not seldom happened that the colonial courts themselves refused effect to legislation enacted in disregard of some restriction or of some rule or principle the legislature was under a legal obligation to observe.

In fact, there appears to be little doubt that it was this practice of the Privy Council and of the colonial courts which prepared the way for the ultimate adoption by the people of the United States of the principle and practice of the judicial review of legislation-the principle, that is to say, which recognizes the jurisdiction of the courts to disregard as a legal nullity any enactment of a legislative body which is obnoxious to a limitation affecting the powers of the legislature and imposed upon it by superior authority. In the colonial days, the superior authority was the Sovereign in Council or the Sovereign in Parliament. After the revolution, the sovereignty of the people was substituted for the sovereignty of the Crown; and the limitations and restrictions imposed by the new sovereign, and expressed in the form of a constitutional instrument, came to be regarded in the same light as those expressed in the colonial charters. This last step was by no means universally accepted as an obrious one, and the authority of the courts to examine the validity of legislation, especially the legislation of Congress, was vigorously assailed. But powerful influences had been at work. Coke, in Dr. Bonham's case had pronounced the dictum, “when an Act of Parliament is against common right and reason. the common law will control it, and adjudge such act to be void.” To the same effect there were dicta of llobart and of Ilolt. Whatever the words were meant to convey, they became a formidable weapon in the hands of American revolutionary lawyers, who were assailing the authority of Parliament as touching taxation in America. And it was the doctrine expressed in these words of Coke which provided Otis and the other lawyer leaders of the American Revolution with the substance of their appeal, addressed on purely legal grounds, as they conceived it, to the people of the colonies. The doctrine, as they expounded it, was, that, for all Englishmen there was a "fundamental law,” which no Parliament could take away. Blackstone had been widely sold and read, especially in New England, and through Blackstone American lawyers were familiar with the principle of Parliamentary sovereignty established by the Settlement of 1688; but there can be little doubt that

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