May 10, 1904

REPORT PRESENTED.


Report of the Department of Militia and Defence for the year ended December 31, 1903-Sir Frederick Borden.


CANADIAN ARTILLERY ASSOCIATION.


Sir FREDERICK BORDEN (Minister of Militia and Defence) moved for leave to introduce Bill (No. 103) to incorporate the Canadian Artillery Association. He said : Mr. Speaker, in reference to this Bill I would like to explain that it is similar to a Bill introduced some years ago by me at the request of the Dominion Rifle Association, and provides for the incorporation of the Canadian Artillery Association, as the Bill to which I have just referred provided for the incorporation of the Dominion Rifle Association. The object of incorporation is to enable tiie association to hold its property without the intervention of trustees, and to facilitate the carrying on of its educational work in connection with the Canadian field and gar- rison artillery- The association works in harmony with the Artillery Branch of the Militia Department, and since February, 1S76, when it was first organized, has proved of great value in assisting in the training of the field and garrison artillery throughout Canada. Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.


ASCENSION DAY-ADJOURNMENT.

LIB

Wilfrid Laurier (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council)

Liberal

Sir WILFRID LAURIER moved :

That when this House adjourns on Wednesday hext, it shall stand adjourned until Friday the 13th inst., at three o'clock in the afternoon.

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Motion agreed to.


PERSONAE EXPLANATION-MR. E. B.

OSLER, M.P.

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Mr. E. B.@

O'SEER (West Toronto). Mr. Speaker, before the Orders of the Day are called, I rise to make a personal explanation and to apologize to the House for occupying its time for a few moments. In my absence yesterday some members from the west saw fit to make a personal attack upon me, as they have done for the past four, or five, or six sessions. I have answered these gentlemen fully, fairly and squarely each year for these four or five years. As to the charges which these gentlemen have made, if the usages of parliament would allow it, they might be described in a word consisting of three letters only. Parliamentary procedure will not allow me to use that word. I would not on this occasion reply, were it not for the fact that last session I thought it proper to put on record a statement as to my original connection with these companies, because it was possible that a wrong inference might be drawn from the statements made by these members. I read a letter in the House last session one evening just before I had to take the train to keep an engagement in the west. After I had read the letter I locked my papers in my desk, left the House to catch the train. It appears that the official reporter, seeing that I was reading from a letter, quite properly did not take notes, and consequently that letter was not published, and it does not appear in ' Hansard,' although I read it in the House. On my arrival here last night I found that this matter had been brought up again, and, of course, I had not with me any of the papers referring to it, but I telegraphed asking that a copy of the letter I refer to be sent to me by telegram. The letter is written by Mr. Nichol Kingsmill, a gentleman

known to most of the members of the House. I do not for one moment expect, or suggest, or anticipate, that the members who make this attack upon me would for a minute accept Mr. Kingsmiil's statement, or the statement of any one in this House, or out of this House, if it suited their mood not to do so. However, I am entitled to place on record the facts as to the early connection I had with these two roads in question. I have already stated tlia^ I was not an original promoter ; that I had nothing to do with promoting these roads ; that I was called in afterwards, and was not in any sense or way connected with the original promoters. Mr. Kingsmill, under date of the 19th of October last year wrote to me in answer to a letter which I sent to him, because I knew he had been familiar with the early formation of these companies. I asked Mr. Kingsmill to write me, as far as hie could his recollection of the particulars of the organization and the early history of these roads, and under date the 19th October, 1903, he wrote me as follows :

October 19th, 1903.

E. B. Osier, M.P., '

Toronto, Ont.

My Dear Osier,-Re Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan Railway Company.

This company was formed by an amalgamation with the South Saskatchewan Valley Railway Company, a list of the directors of which I now inclose ; also a list of the incorporators of the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan Railroad and Steamboat Company.

X was employed by the late Senator Mac-Innes and Mr. Andrew Onderdonk to endeavour to get the assistance of the government to this railway, after the first 25 miles had been built.

The affairs of the company were in a very low condition financially, and Mr. Onderdonk had been called in by the late Senator Machines to endeavour to undertake the construction of the railway. Mr. Onderdonk made an oiler to the government, but no arrangement was made, and it was, if I mistake not, some time subsequent to this that you lent your assistance and carried the railway to completion. I was acting for the contractors who constructed the road, but in this you had no Interest.

Now, there were two roads, as far as my recollection goes, because, personally, I had no interest whatever in the matter, and I only speak from memory. The late Mr. Gilbert Pugsley, and some of his associates in St. John, N.B., owned one charter, and they had constructed a road from Regina for twenty-five miles through the valley. They had got into trouble ; they had borrowed from one of the banks in Toronto-I do not think I am wrong in stating -that it was the Imperial Bank-$30,000 or $40,000 upon the whole of the issue of the bonds they were entitled to make, which I think was $250,000 on that twenty-five miles of road. They had organized a company and they had a certain amount of stock paid up. The road was going to be sold, and I remember the first I had to do with it was that the general manager of the Imperial Bank came to me and asked me if I could find out if there was any way in which the rails could be taken up and sold to pay their debt. Senator Maclnnes apparently had a charter covering pretty much the same ground. They had been a long time evidently without making any progress. I had returned from England, and the late

was

water it was then and water it is now. Qu'Apppelle and Long Lake jtock, anybody could buy, I suppose at half a cent on the dollar. But, for such comments to come form gentlemen who are supporting a water issue of $45,000,000 of Grand Trunk Pacific stock and objecting to any man on this side even suggesting that there should be restrictions placed on the handling of that $45,000,000, is it notr a little -well, what shall we call it, Mr. Speaker-is it not a little thin ?

Now, as regards the anonymous letters read in this House yesterday, I have only a word to say. When I was a boy-I was brought up on a farm in the bush-we soon found that there was a little animal we had better not meddle with. It had stripes down its back and a bushy tail

An hou. MEMBER. A porcupine.

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CON

Edmund Boyd Osler

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. OSLER.

No, that has prickles, but this has none. Well, I would rather hunt that little animal, with all its disagreeableness, than I would hunt or reply to the man who reads an anomymous letter. I do not propose to go into any long discussion of this matter. It seems to me a litttle tiresome. I dare say I may take these attacks rather as a compliment, as indicating that something I have said, some speech I have made, has been rather rankling in the minds or through the hides of some gentlemen, and they take their revenge by making personal attacks upon me and making statements that cannot be replied to in this House in language that might, and even should, be used elsewhere. But, Mr. Speaker, I hardly wonder at it. -The Prime Minister quoted the other day a famous passage and made a personal application of that passage to myself, much to my discredit if the application were true. Now, I have a somewhat indistinct recollection of a famous passage written by one of the Irish novelists. It was a description of a hunt in that country. There was a rather rough-and-tumble pack of hounds with all the mongrels and curs in the countryside following. The writer goes on to say that when the leader gave tongue, the whole pack joined in the halloo. The mongrels and the curs, following at the tail of the pack, yelping and yapping and thought that because they came last and had in view all the sport, they were the chief actors in it, and that the whole show had been got up for their benefit and so they yapped all the louder.

1 have not the least doubt that if the scene had been located by that writer in some sections of our great Northwest, the coyotes would have been also at the end of the pack howling and yapping and thinking they were the most important of all the pack because they made the most noise, and at all events the most disagreeable noise. I am always sorry when I have to make a personal allusion or an}' personal reference, but I deny absolutely Mr. OSLER.

and in toto, the statements made in this House yesterday by the hon. member for West Assiniboia (Mr. Scott) and the member for Saskatchewan (Mr. Davis). The figures 1 have given to this House, the history of my connection with this transaction I have stated with absolute correctness. I am not ashamed of any connection I have had with either of those two companies. On the contrary, considering the time when the roads were built, considering the difficulties to be encountered, considering that at the time the credit of the Northwest was at the very lowest water, that land was unsaleable and that the country had not recovered from the effects of the rebellion, that there was a very strong desire on the part of the government to put those two railroads through, that many important men who had been connected with railway matters had been offered the opportunity to build this road on similar terms-in the case of the Calgary and Edmonton, 10,000 acres a mile had been offered and it had gone begging a long time-I consider that the terms upon which the roads were built were very favourable to the country. I took charge of this transaction in my capacity as a business man ; it was simply a business transaction of my friends. In connection with the lands, my Winnipeg office has had the management of that land ever since the companies were organised, and I think any land company or any individuals would be only too glad to have the same men admininster any such property for them. I beg to move the adjournment of the House.

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LIB

Thomas Walter Scott

Liberal

Mr. WALTER SCOTT (West Assiniboia).

I dare say that the hon. gentleman will plume himself that his answer and explanation given this afternoon is a full and fair explanation, as he has said, the explanations given by him on former occasions have been. It will be the general opinion of gentlemen on both sides of the House, that the answer he has given to the indictment made in this House yesterday by myself and the hon. member for Saskatchewan (Mr. Davis), is such a miserable apology for an answer that it would not be necessary for any one to take any special notice of it, and were it not for the references the hon. gentleman made in his opening remarks in regard to the word made up of three letters, I should not take up any of the time of the House in referring further to this matter. But I do not propose that it shall be said that I have sat silent under an accusation of being a liar. My hon. friend in place of giving anything in the nature of a full explanation has attempted to substitute a reference, a sweet smelling reference, to one of the bush acquaintances of his boyhood days. What he has put forward by way of explanation, is a letter from a very respected gentleman in Toronto, respecting what ?

Not respecting tlie companies wlncli constructed these roads, but respecting defunct companies which were in existence prior to 1889, which did not construct the railways and which were succeeded by the two companies with which the hon. gentleman for West Toronto (Mr. Osier) is connected. I suppose it should be to us a matter of congratulation that the hon. gentleman (Mr. Osier) has seen fit, has seen it to be consistent with# his dignity, to rise at ail in the House arid to put up any sort of explanation. To that extent we have to be gratified, but let me say to him, that I am afraid that the people who are complaining at the present time because of the notoriously poor service over those roads, will not feel that it is a matter of particular gratification that that hon. gentleman who, as I have heard upon the authority of Sir Thomas Shaughnessy is the controller of one of these railroads, the one about which the chief complaint in now made, has seen fit to occupy more than one half hour of the time of this parliament this afternoon, and to make not the slightest reference to the unfortunate condition of the people in that country who aie suffering.

Notwithstanding the facts and the records which have been pointed to, the hon. gentleman has had the audacity to repeat this afternoon the explanation he made last year and to say that every statement he made last year was absolutely correct. He -has had the audacity to repeat here that he was not a promoter of either road, notwithstanding the fact that yesterday, in contrast to his statement that he was not a promoter and that he was not one of the people to obtain the charter for the Calgary and Edmonton road, I was able to point to the plain printed statute, chapter 84 of the Statutes of 1890, containing the name of E. B. Osier of Toronto. He has the audacity to _ repeat here that his statements as to the amount of the six years interest which was left in the hands of the bankers, was an absolutely correct statement, in face of the calculation that I gave to the House yesterday. The public records show that the proceeds of the bonds in connection with these railroads amounted to $9,283,053. Were the bonds sold at par ? I would ask my hon. friend if they were sold at par or at what percentage ? Those bonds were practically guaranteed by the Canadian Pacific Railway, a going institution. an institution whose credit at that time and at the present time I understand to be very good. A practical guarantee was given in the prospectus by the Canadian Pacific Railway that at the end of six years they would take up these bonds at 110. I would therefore ask whether the bonds were sold at par or at what percentage ? My hon. friend does not see fit to give any reply. At all events the proceeds of the

bonds amounted to $9,283,653, whereas, the gross, receipts amounted to $6,283,102. The hon. gentleman's statement last year was that the difference was the amount that had to be left in the hands of the bankers. That difference is an amount of $3,000,491. That is what he says was left in the hands of the bankers to meet six years interest upon what ? On the whole amount of the proceeds of the bonds, $9,283,653 ? Surely, as I stated yesterday, this great financier did not find it necessary to leave money in the hands of the bankers to meet the interest upon the actual money that was left there. Surely the money that was left with the bankers was sufficient to meet its own interest. If not, as was pointed out in one of the letters which I read yesterday-not an anonymous letter, a letter having the name of a substantial citizen of this country appended to it, a name which I did not have the privilege of giving to this House-why was the money not deposited with the Receiver General of Canada or with some institution in this country which pays interest on deposits? Would the hon. member for West Toronto be good enough to say why it was necessary to leave an amount in the hands of bankers to meet the interest upon the amount which was actually left in the hands of the bankers ? The hon. gentleman does not see fit to make any reply to this very pertinent question. We wfill take it for granted that the amount of money left with the bankers attended to its own interest. Therefore, what sum was needed to meet the six years interest ? Six years interest at six per cent on the sum that went into the roads would be a matter of $2,261,934. The cash subvention from the government of $80,000 per annum on each of the roads, a total of $160,000 per annum, would in six years, amount to $960,000. By the prospectus a portion of which I read yesterday some of the land grant was sold. As has been pointed out the government were to retain one third of the land grant given in connection with this Prince Albert road and if two-thirds of the 1,400,000 acres in connection with this Prince Albert road, were sold at one dollar an acre-and I take this figure of one dollar an acre because the hon. member for West Toronto last year rather hinted to the House that the land had to be sold at that time for about one dollar an acre-there is still a little bit of mystery connected with the people who got the land-it would bring $933,332. That with the cash subvention, makes $1,593,332. So that all that would be required to meet the six years' interest would be $668,002. But the actual difference between the bond issue and the cost of the road was over $3.000,000. There is a matter of very nearly $2,500,000 that the hon. gentleman makes no attempt to explain. Let me point again

to the statement which appears in the prospectus a portion of which I read here yesterday afternoon. It is stated that: '

Eighty thousand a year for twenty years will be paid over direct to trustees for the bondholders.

I would direct the particular attention of the House to the next sentence :

The company are further entitled to a grant of about 1.400,000 acres of selected lands ; a sale of a considerable portion has just been concluded, the proceeds of which will be paid to the agents of the loan, and will be sufficient to provide the balance of the interest on above bonds until first February, 1S96.

Anonymous letters are not required to controvert the assertions which the hon. member for West Toronto made in this House last year and which he has endeavoured to repeat this year. There is no necessity for using any letters. All we need to have are the public records taken together with these extracts from the prospectus issued by the Qu'Appelle, Long Lake and Saskatchewan Railway Company. Why did the hon. gentleman refer to letters, when, according to this statement issued by the company, the government subventions and the sale of a portion of the land grant were sufficient to provide the interest required for six years ? I ask the hon. member for West Toronto what became of the [DOT]86,000,491 if he dares to get up and endeavour to answer. It remains after all his explanation, entirely unexplained. What has become of the residue of the lands ? Only a portion of the lands were sold.

Let me say to the House and to the hon. gentleman himself that last year I made no personal attack against him. I said substantially that I accused the hon. gentleman of no wrong doing and of nothing beyond taking advantage of, I think I termed it improper, or at all events, unwise railway legislation which had been put on the statute books by the then government. I went so far as to state that the hon. gentleman in my opinion held his public position at a very considerable personal and financial sacrifice and I went on to say that it was an encouraging thing that men of his calibre, men of his extensive business interests were found willing to sacrifice their personal and financial interests to take public positions. Hon. members of the House may find that remark made by myself at page 14587 of last year's 'Hansard.' I was careful to state then that I was making and intended to make no personal reflection in any shape or manner against the honour, integrity or character of the hon. member for West Toronto. Mr. Speaker, I am very sorry to say that I am obliged now to revise that opinion that I placed upon ' Hansard ' last year. I have proved conclusively within the judgment of the members of this House, that the fact" which forced me to retract Mr. SCOTT.

some assertions made on the floor of this House last year were the inaccurate statements, the untrue statements that were made on a later occasion by the hon. member for West Toronto, who has been obliged to admit to-day that when I stated last year that he was a promoter and charter holder of this road I only stated the fact as is proved by the statutes of 1890, chapter 84, and until the hon. gentleman offers me the apology which is my due from him I shall be obliged to hold a different opinion regarding his personal honour to that which I took occasion to express in this House last year. By the attitude which he has taken during the latter part of last session and during the whole course of this session in regard to the Grand Trunk Pacific proposition, prostituting his position as a member of the Canadian Pacific Railway board

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Some hon. MEMBERS

Order.

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LIB

Lawrence Geoffrey Power (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER.

I think the hon. gentleman is really exceeding the bounds of debate.

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LIB

Thomas Walter Scott

Liberal

Mr. SOOTT.

I shall, according to your decision, Mr. Speaker, withdraw the word * prostituting.' Would the word ' abusing ' be in order, because, in my opinion, if I am not able to use the other word or the word ' abusing,' it will be simply impossible for me to express my true opinion regarding the hon. gentleman's conduct in respect to the Grand Trunk Pacific proposition ? Surely the word 'using ' is parliamentary-using his position in this House to block, to obstruct and to prevent the building of that railway into the very locality from which we are receiving telegrams complaining that they have no railway service at all. Now, the hon. gentleman himself and some others have complained about my methods in bringing this matter before the attention of the House and before the attention of the country. Let me say to him and to them that anything that I have had to say to him or about him I have used my place on this floor to say. I have not gone about the corridors of this House blackguarding any one else. I have not sat in clubs blackguarding other members of the House.

I have not had any partners going to news-papaer offices in Toronto, to put forward statements publicly through the newspaper columns that other members were liars and scoundrels. He has complained about not receiving notice when these matters were to come up. Let me ask him : Did he send me ' any notice last year when he intended to get up in his place in the House and call me a liar and falsifier and a slanderer. Let me just ask this : That if it has been a cowardly thing in any respect for me to bring up this matter affecting the interests of tens of thousands of people, if I have been in any sense cowardly in the manner in which I have brought this matter before the House,

I repent of it now. I am here to-day and he is here, and I say to him now in his presence, that I repeat emphatically everything I said last year and yesterday concerning his connection with these transactions. And until, the hon. gentleman brings some better evidence forward to refute the statements I made last year and yesterday, I shall be obliged to continue to believe that these statements are absolutely true. I am constrained to ask : Who this member is

anyhow ; who is this man who sets himself up above so many of the other hon. members of this House ; who is this man who demands that we shall take his word in face of the actual printed statutes of this parliament ; in face of the information from the bondholders of the company ; in face of the mortgage deed of the Calgary and Edmonton Company; in face of all the other undoubted, indisputable facts which have been placed on ' Hansard ; ' who is he that asks us that we should take his unsupported word in face of all this proof? I am constrained to ask : Who this man is, that is so superior to the printed statutes of this country, and so superior to the printed records ?

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CON

James Clancy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLANCY.

I rise to a point of order. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Scott) has no right to call, an hon. member of this House a man.

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Some hon. MEMBERS

Hear, hear.

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Some hon. MEMBERS

Oh, oh.

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CON

James Clancy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. CLANCY.

That is scarcely an intelligent laugh from the other side. Such conduct quite becomes lion.* gentlemen opposite. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Scott) has no right to refer to another member of this House, other than in the third person. That is my point of order. . Nobody* in this House would address the hon. gentleman (Mr. Scott) in the language in which he has addressed the hon. member for West Toronto.

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LIB

Thomas Walter Scott

Liberal

Mr. SCOTT.

Well, if the friend and colleague of the hon. member for West Toronto considers that word ' man ' is not a proper term to apply-

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May 10, 1904