gentleman is guilty of having introduced into the service for the first time the defence of a man holding a high position and drawing a large salary, on the plea that he was a good officer, and that what he had said was true. The present Commissioner of Customs (Mr McDougal), could just as consistently go out on the stump to-morrow and advocate the principles of the Liberal party, if they had any, and he would be no more censurable than Mr. Bain. But the hon. gentleman has shown to the country that the service is permeated with corruption. I do not know of a more corrupt thing than to take the people's money and prostitute the service as the hon. gentleman has prostituted it. He did not do it unwittingly, and he unblushingly defends it now. We have never witnessed a spectacle like this since we have been privileged to have a parliament in Canada, and I hope we will never witness . it again. What is the paltry, miserable excuse that the hon. gentleman gives ? It is that this gentleman has done good service. A collector of customs who is a good officer might as well go on the stump and say what he likes, or write campaign literature and then come back and render the excuse which the hon. gentleman has given by saying that he was a good officer. That has nothing to do with it. The hon. minister has not done himself justice and he certainly has not done his department justice. The hon. gentleman did elevate himself somewhat the other evening when he refused to get up and make a point blank denial of what he knew to be a fact. The hon. gentleman chose on that occasion to be silent. But, the hon. gentleman has not improved with the lapse or time. He comes back with the defence that the officer is a good one, and the literature he prepared is true. We might just as well take one of the hon. gentleman's officers tomorrow and allow him to go out on the stump, telling the people that the hon. Minister of Customs in the House of Commons had defended that course of conduct, that lie was perfectly at liberty to pursue that course and that the minister would justify him. There is no single officer in his department who could not to-morrow' go on stump after what the hon. gentleman has said, discuss politics and take any active part in politics he chose. He could say . Have I not done my part well in my department ? Is all I have said and written perfectly true 1 Is that not a perfect lustih-cation ? I would like the hon. gentleman just to see how it would appear in his eyes if any hon. gentleman on this side or the House should take the position he has taken to-night. No one would more readily ie-buke a course of conduct like that than the hon. gentleman himself. I want to say that the hon. Minister of Customs has laid down the most vicious rule that was everlaiddown in this House. He has told the people plainly that you may spend public money for any purpose you like, that you may employ
political hacks, and employ them with the public money, although, I say that the man who has been writing this literature is not the hack. If you were to ask who the hack was I would be forced to name the hon. o-ent'leman who defends this conduct in this House to-night. I do not believe that in the whole history of the parliament of Canada, a minister has ever made such an exhibition as that which the hon. gentleman has made here to-night. I do not know one who has ever laid down so vicious a principle. I do not know one who has ever so unblushingly defended it.