March 8, 1910

LIB

David Bradley Neely

Liberal

Mr. NEELY.

Mr. Speaker, having got round this somewhat difficult point of order-

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Some hon. MEMBERS

Order.

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LIB

David Bradley Neely

Liberal

Mr. NEELY.

If the hon. member for Frontenac expects me to make any further statement on this question he has my statement now, and that is the only one that I shall make with respect to the matter. I have told him that I am perfectly willing to accept his interpretation of his own remarks. I also make the statement that that was not the interpretation put upon his words by myself and a large majority of the members of this House.

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Some hon. MEMBERS

Order.

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LIB

David Bradley Neely

Liberal

Mr. NEELY.

When I was interrupted by the hon. member, I was referring to the complex situation that would be brought about in this country, if we submit the many policies which have been propounded in this House to the people of Canada for their decision, and I was proceeding to mention that one of the questions that would have to be inserted would be the question as to whether or not we were against the empire, to meet the point raised in this discussion as to the interpretation to be placed upon the speech of the hon. member for Frontenac. I submit that it is a fair proposition that if anything is to be submitted to the people of Canada every phase of this question ought to be submitted, and how much further ahead would this House or this country be by a referendum of the whole question of imperial defence? The only reason at all that I have heard from the benches of the opposition as to their complete reversal of policy on this question was the somewhat novel statement made by the hon. member for Terrebonne (Mr. Nantel) who told the House, as his speech was interpreted to me, as I unfortunately do not understand French, that he voted last year for the resolution passed by the House because the Prime Minister said that there was a German peril. But this year he would vote against the establishment of a Canadian navy because he understood that the German peril was

over. While that may be a very novel explanation for the hon. gentleman to make to this House, it does not meet the case as far as other hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House are concerned, because the only reason that has been advanced by the opposition why they have made this right about face on the question of Canada's defence is that they claim there is an emergency in the affairs of the empire, and that Great Britain is subject to imminent peril by the construction of an enormous fleet of battleships by the people of Germany. Suppose we take the position of the hon. gentleman for granted, that there is an emergency, that there is a crisis in the affairs of the empire? Do these hon. gentlemen undertake to tell us that a contribution of $20,000,000 is going to materially affect that crisis or that emergency? Do they mean to tell us that a single gift of $20,000,000 is the margin of safety between the British empire and the power of the German navy? It seems to be the position taken by these hon. gentlemen that the margin of safety for the empire is a gift by Canada of $20,000,000.

If they do not hold to that position they must take the other, viz.: that if $20,000,000 is not a margin of safety we must continue this contribution periodically. I submit that not a single member of the opposition has answered the question asked by the member for Red Deer early in this debate: What is their future policy

on the question of Canada's part in the defence of the empire? The other day the member for St. Anne (Mr. Doherty) told us that we on this side were raising a fictitious objection to a contribution when we said that a contribution savoured of tribute to Great Britain. Now, I want to press home this question to hon. gentlemen opposite: if the policy of a direct contribution is adopted as the permanent policy of this country, then these contributions must become periodic, and in that light I do say that they become a tribute on the people of Canada for the support of the British navy. We will either make this contribution as a duty, or as a matter of charity, and I do not think any man in this House will say we are doing it as a matter of charity. Then, if we do it as a matter of duty it certainly becomes a tribute from the people of Canada, and as such it is a case of taxation without representation. Now, suppose for argument sake we take it for granted there is an emergency as hon. gentlemen opposite have told, us, where was that emergency in March, 1909? Were there not the same conditions existing in the affairs of the empire in March, 1909, as at the present time? And, if there is a peril, or a menace from the growth of the German navy, and if that peril becomes greater as the years go by shall Canada be called upon next year, and the year

after to furnish further sums of $20,000,000 or $25,000,000 by way of contribution to the British fleet? My very strong objection to the policy laid -down by the leader of the opposition is that in order to be effective- and these hon. gentlemen are very handy with the word ' effective ' in declaring that the Canadian navy cannot be made effective-my objection to the policy of the leader of the opposition is that if a contribution is to be made effective it must become the permanent policy of the country to contribute periodically a certain sum. Mr. Speaker, my very strongest objections to the policy of direct contribution have already been stated and restated to the House, but I may say that the very strongest arguments advanced against the policy of contribution have come from hon. gentlemen opposite themselves. When the member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster) introduced his resolution last year he took very strong ground against the policy of direct contribution by Canada to Great Britain, and I shall quote from his speech one or two brief sentences merely to emphasize the position I now take. The hon. gentleman (Mr. Foster) in discussing the policy of a contribution said:

The first and greatest objection which I have to a fixed money contribution is that it bears the aspect of hiring somebody else to do what wC ourselves ought to do; as though a man, the father of a family, in lusty health and strength, should pay his neighbour something per month for looking after the welfare and safety of his home instead of doing that duty himself.

Further on he said:

The interest that we take in a contribution spent by another is not the interest that I desire for Canada.

And Sir, I want to say that the last objection taken by the hon. gentleman (Mr. Foster) against the policy of contribution appeals very strongly to me. The member for East Lambton (Mr. Armstrong) at the conclusion of an able address on this question expressed very eloquently his feelings of loyalty and patriotism towards the motherland, and he said: I

I have unbounded faith in my King and country, and undying belief in the empire to which I belong. Let the British navy continue to be the floating bulwark of our land and her parliament our guiding star. The most effective contribution we co-uld make, and one which may never need to be repeated, would be to give to England's navy two Dreadnoughts. Then if you must build a navy, submit the whole question to the Canadian people. I am prepared to assist in maintaining the splendid inheritance received from our forefathers. I love my country, I believe in her, I honour her, I am prepared to work for her, to live for her, and, if needs be, die for her.

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LIB

David Bradley Neely

Liberal

Mr. NEELY.

products of western Canada can be shipped to the British market. On behalf of the people I represent, I shall support the policy of the government, which means the development of Canada's own resources by Canadian money, and the giving of an opportunity to the young men of this country to follow a career on the sea in the defence of Canada and the empire.

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ask them to protect us. I am, therefore, proud to be able to support the amendment of the lion, the leader of the opposition, because that resolution states that we are willing to do something right now, we are willing to say that we will have in that great navy two Dreadnoughts, and that as soon as we can get the young men trained we will man those Dreadnoughts with Canadians who will take their place in the front ranks of the great battle, should war occur. It is my hope and wish, as it is that of every Canadian and of every man in the British empire, that war should not come. But the very fact of having a great navy will preserve peace in the future as the navy has preserved peace in the past. I shall not take up more time; I simply rose to make these few remarks and to explain why I did not wish to give a silent vote on this question.


LIB

Honoré Hippolyte Achille Gervais

Liberal

Mr. HONORE GERVAIS (St. James, Montreal).

Mr. Speaker, with regard to the many services which have been render-ered to Canada by Great Britain, some of which have been mentioned by .the hon. member for Grenville (Mr. J. D. Reid), I shall not say much, as I agree with that member on that point. I agree also that Canada owes a debt of gratitude to England for these services that have been rendered her in the last hundred years. With regard to the third question which has been raised by the hon. member, the question of the kind of contribution that Canada should give to England, I ask the hon. member for Grenville to agree with me in the position I take and which I shall explain as I proceed. Canada, as I shall show, is ready to grant to England the kind of aid that has been, agreed upon between Canada and England. With these few remarks, I proceed to explain the vote that I intend to give on this Bill (No. 95).

Mr. Speaker. I took a great deal of interest, in the debate which took place in this House in March last, upon the resolution concerning the aid to be given to Great Britain for the strengthening of the British navy. It is now proposed that Canada should take a step further in that direction, and the government asks parliament to crystallize that resolution, and give it effect by the passage of this legislation entitled 'an Act respecting the Naval Service of Canada'; and a subsequent resolution providing for the expenditure necessary for the establishment of that service. By the 53rd clause of this Bill, the government will be empowered to organize a permanent volunteer naval force, at its expense, the ships to be built in Canada, manned and commanded by Canadians, or commanded by officers appointed by Canada, to defend Canada, first, and.assist England in its defr in Mr. J. D. REHX

case of need, under the command in chief of the King, as is required by the political status of this Dominion.

Sir, let me explain some of the many reasons for which this Bill should be passed:

During the recess of parliament a rather lengthy conference between the representatives of the British government, and of the self-governing colonies was held in London to determine the kind of aid that should be given to England. This conference was the natural outcome of previous meetings held between some of the British ministers and the representatives of the most important of the three classes which we find amongst the 80 colonies or possessions under the sovereigntv of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The universal policy of the world is shaping itself towards the supplant ing of territorial, or local, or internal trade, by a general or universal trade, or in other words a maritime commerce.

The government is to-day, asking the representatives of this country in this House assembled, to declare themselves on the programme which they are presenting for the creation of a naval defence in connection with the large maritime trade which Canadian merchants are building up. As a representative of the most important city of Canada, the commercial metropolis, and the greatest national port of the Dominion, I cannot give a silent vote upon this great issue.

I owe it to my constituents of the city of Montreal, and I owe it to myself to explain, through what process of personal reflection, through what conception and reasoning, I have, freely, independently from all passing pressure and unlinked to any superior influence, formed my opinion upon the plan which the government has submitted to us.

I do not expect to satisfy the expectations of everybody with my declarations and my vote, but, I at least, hope that, those who after mature reasoning, while not thinking as I do, will feel bound to admit that, in so doing, I have nothing in view but the welfare and greatness of my country. *

Allow me then, Sir, to indulge in a brief retrospect of the work and progress of some of the great empires of the past, and the greatness of which was based on their maritime trade. Some of my hon. friends have already quoted from the lessons of the past, and I have listened to their statements with great pleasure; because the past will always be for mankind the best teacher. In anything we do, whatever may be our differences, divisions and strifes, we are nevertheless bound to seek, in the past, for our safest methods to solve the problems of the present. History

there teaches us that the greatest and the richest and the happiest nations have been those which gave the bes% of their energies and wealth to the building and maintenance of a great maritime commerce, through the equipment of both a merchant fleet and a war fleet. Allow me to remind you briefly of the best illustrations, which occur to me, of the soundness of my views, Athens, Lacedaemon, Crete, Lesbos, Chios, and all the Greek cities and colonies, were nonentities in the political world until, through a skilful and costly combination of forces, money and ships, and under the guidance of an Athenian admiral (if I am permitted to use a modern term to designate its commander) they put to sea a fleet, powerful enough to repulse Asiatic barbarians and other foes. So long as, but not one minute longer, than they had the most powerful fleet, the Greeks were the governing political leaders of the ancient world. Greece was at its political zenith between the time of the battle of Salamis, and that of Aegos-Potamos, which are the Alpha and Omega of their political and commercial pre-eminence. Rome was a second-class power before the battle of Antium, or, so long as the Romans could not send vessels to conquer Carthage and Asia Minor, and could not rule on the sea a3 they did on land. During the feudal ages, Venice and Genoa were the supreme arbiters of politics in Europe, just because they were the undisputed masters of the Mediterranean. The most prosperous cities of Europe, during the 400 years from the 12th to the 16th century,^ were the eighty free towns, holding meetings of their delegates, every three years, either at Lubeck, or Cologne, or Hamburg, for the purpose of assessing the contribution of each town, of securing new trading privileges, and of better defending both old and new ones. Neither a mon-archial state, nor a polyarchial state ever enjoyed a greater amount of respect, of prestige from the other monarchies or republics, than those eighty cities composing that quasi-state known, as the Hanseatic League. I contemplate with wonder the enormous waste of human energies and wealth which went to create, upon the ruins of the empire of Venice, that other great Portuguese empire, which was the ruler of the world during the 15th century, just after the discovery of the route to the orient via the Cape of the Tempests, to use the description of Camoens. And then, upon the partition of the unknown world by Pope Nicholas V, in 1454, and Alexander VI in 1493, Spain reached out for America, and astonished Europe by the vastness and richness of her new discoveries. Spain reigned supreme in Europe, during the 16th century. The Netherlands got the monopoly of the trade of the world, during the 17th century, through the audacity, activity

and devotion of its mariners. France, during the 18th century, was the arbiter of the maritime destinies of the world, and it was not until then that she was recognized as the dominating political power in Europe.

England came, after Trafalgar, to become as she remains to-day, the ruling state of the world, just because of the indisputable supremacy of her fleet. But, to-day, other states are organizing merchant fleets, and as a direct consequence, war fleets. Our age will witness the competition of a number of maritime states for the trade supremacy of the world. There are to-day thirty states out of forty-eight going into the maritime trade, and the destinies of the world can no longer rest under the power of a single state. The world's richness is no more to be the easy field of exploitation by a nation having a few thousand daring mariners protecting a great many more thousands of thrifty factors, merchants, traders and shippers. Every state seems ready to send its young men and even its older citizens to conquer the wealth of the unexplored, or undeveloped countries. A universal thirst for business and its profits, for gold, is manifest in every quarter. And in every state there is-and" it is quite natural-a tendency to equip on the seas, a fleet of both merchantmen and warships to defend its interests; the one cannot go without the other. States of to-day are getting more and more commercialized and are preparing themselves to compete for the partition of the universal wealth of the world. But such competition, while it may be friendly at the start, must prove eventually hostile. After the tariff wars, one may easily foresee the wars in which predominance is to be determined by the guns of warships. England is confronted to-day with such a condition of affairs, and Canada cannot longer ignore the situation. The so-called German war scare is but one of them, though I must remind you, Sir, that amongst German officers to-day it is customary to offer a toast to ' The Next Meeting,' meaning on board of the first captured English battleship.

It is at this turning point in the life of England and Canada, that we are invited to consider the possibility of future political difficulties. To make Canada ready for any emergency, several policies are proposed. What are they? The first is: the presentation of two Dreadnoughts now, and then, resting on our oars to await adequate results from an unknown policy of defence. The exponent of the policy is the honourable the leader of the opposition. The second is: Canada is to play

the 'manly part,' and very naturally its sponsor is the hon. member for North Toronto (Mr. Foster). The third proposed is to do nothing until a plebiscite is had, with 1 a declaration of unalterable devotion to the

British Crown as an assurance policy; and, according to the words of that official publication of the late Mr. Hansard, its father is the hon. member for Jacques Cartier (Mr. Monk), who, after a six months' canvass, has found a few thousand persons, mostly youths, out of 2,000,000 in the province of Quebec, to support his views. Under the fourth head may be classified ten or twelve other varied and variable policies, that I beg leave not to expound, as they are mostly founded upon newspaper quotations, poetical recitations, and historical misapplication. Are all those plans as clear and terse and patriotic as that of the government? I venture to say, Sir, they are not. The first two policies are undefinable, impractical and, therefore, negligible. The third one is illogical and illegal, as it is a denial to this House, acting upon a five-years' mandate, of the right to spend one-thirtieth of the revenues of Canada for its defence, when this House might if it chose waste the whole revenue in buying peanuts. The cabinet, in order to meet the wishes of England, now proposes to this parliament to vote an expenditure of $12,000,000 to build ships once and for all, and to pay for their maintenance yearly, something less than $4,500,000. This, therefore, means a yearly expenditure of one and one third million dollars for maintaining and manning ships, the construction of which has cost $4,000,000.

The purpose of the government plan is obviously to provide a plan of defence for Canada and of help to England, according to the wishes, amounting almost to demands of the latter, which I take to be expressed, conclusively, in the reports of the Naval Defence Conference of 1909, and the circumstances surrounding the same.

Now. Sir, should we resist these desires of England? I have waited, a long time, before giving my very modest view about the solution of this problem, for a great political and economical problem it undeniably is. I say at once, that it is a question to be decided, not according to race, nor religion, nor historical prejudices, but according purely and simply to the teaching of reason, of law, and of devotion to the best interests of our dear country. To begin with, I must, according to my mind, explain the political status of Canada. in relation to the foreign states of the world, and to England, and the definition of that status will go a great way to show that Canada is not free to reject the requests of England. I must say, that I do not agree with most of the speeches, writings and editorials, which have been written, during the last half century about the great amount of independence enjoyed by Canada. I admit that England has been good enough, during that long period, to let our authors, newspapermen, and orators, fell the people of Canada that they were Mr. GEEVAIS.

perfectly free and independent of England, and that they were their own masters, both in regard to England, and the other states. This, according to my mind, has been a rather equivocal statement of the position which Canada occupies to-day, both in relation to England, and to the other states.

I know it is rather hard and humiliating to say those things to my fellow-citizens, but just the same I feel bound to say it for the purpose of pointing out what is the duty of Canada to-day with regard to the request which is being made upon her by England to assist her in the coming commercial battle. I venture to state that Canada, in this year of 1910, according to the teaching of international law, is simply a province of the British empire, having no status whatever with regard to foreign states. Our country does not possess any of the characteristics (which number eight or ten altogether), of what is called state, and which make an aggregation of people irresponsible to any human power, but-to use a phrase of the fifteenth century-' Responsible only to God.' If I examine the classification of states, I am forced to admit that our country is neither a sovereign state, like England; nor a semisovereign state, like Bulgaria was; nor a neutral state, like Belgium, nor a state under protectorate like Tunis; nor even a tributary state like Egypt. Comparison of conditions is here of a great benefit to teach our citizens the truth about their reduced political rank in the eyes of the world. With a political organism subject to the caprices of the parliament at Westminster; without power to make its territories productive by foreign trade; without jurisdiction to pass undefeasible laws; unable to protect its citizens abroad before judicial or administrative authorities; unable to ask for marks of respect; unable to send diplomatic agents; unentitled to foreign recognition; incapable of making treaties, unable, unless authorized to do so, to issue letters patent of command either to army officers or to navy officers even to defend her own territory; here stands Canada to-day, calling herself a nation. By telling my fellow-citizens what we really are, I hope I may convey to them the aspiration of being what they might be. While I am making a rather poor picture of the personality of Canada to-day, I am bound to think that this naval move will tend to increase tremendously the importance of our country, and that is why I am in favour of the passing of this Bill. .

Canada to-day has not even the right to speak to a minister of foreign affairs, even through her Prime Minister, unless the latter has been clothed with a letter patent issued by the British Minister of Foreign Affairs. So much so, is this, that during the negotiations of the Franco-Canadian

treaty, the Hon. Mr. Fielding, and the Hon. Mr. Brodeur, had to be authorized very minutely by England to speak to the Minister ot Trade and Commerce of France, and had to be introduced to the latter by the British Ambassador, in Paris. Let me cite, as the only fact which gives to Canada, what may be styled a recognition by a foreign power, that clause of the Franeo-Canadian treaty which allows an employee appointed by Canada to certify bills of lading, or certificates of origin of goods, which may have a legal value. That is about the limit of the action of our country in relation to foreign countries.

I apologize for reminding the House that but a few weeks ago, the Canadian agent-in Antwerp had to haul down his sign marked ' Canadian Agency ' at the request of the British consul in that city, under the pretense that such action on behalf of the Canadian agent would create possible confusion in the minds of the citizens of Belgium a.s to the political status of Canada. Canada has no flag, if we do not accept as such the emblem which our merchantmen were some years ago empowered to unfurl at their mastheads. And I do not need to argue very long to show that of international status Canada has none, because the very name of -our country ' Dominion,' which our French translators have very proudly, but improperly, translated into the word ' puissance,' should remind us that we are but a domain of the Crown; to use the language of the Act of 1834, defining the powers of the Privy Council of England, and giving to that final tribunal an unlimited jurisdiction over any judgment given by any court in any colony, ' Dominion,' or plantation of His Majesty. In a general way, I could point out many other cases of deception arising out -of our political and administrative terminology.

If vre examine now the status of Canada under the light of the public law of England, what do we discover? One finds that, though a delegation of powers, a federal legislative body, and nine provincial legislatures are supervising private intercourse between our citizens, the application of the civil laws of France, or the common law of England, the appointment of judges to decide litigations arising out of about 20 contracts, and finally looking over the administration, of municipal affairs. No constitutional guarantee, in the constitutional Act of 1867, is to be found limiting the power of Great Britain to impose taxes upon its citizens in Canada. If we look at sections 91 and 92 of that Act, wre find that even our power to naturalize British subjects is very limited, because our natural* ized British subjects_are considered as such exclusively within the territory of Canada, and they are not British subjects within the British Isles, nor even in any British

colony outside of Canada. If we examine the statutes of England, we find quite a number of Acts applicable to Canada, and no concern is taken whether they be repugnant or not to the wording of our Canadian statutes. Let me quote, for example, the Colonial Prison Act, the Colonial Offenders' Act, the Colonial Marriage Act, the Colonial Fortification Act, the Colonial Courts Act, the Colonial Clergy Act, the Colonial Attorney' Act, the Colonial Law's Act, the Naturalization Act, the Merchant Shipping Act, the Bills of Exchange Act, and last but not least, the Colonial Laws 'Validity Act, 1865, 28-29 Victoria, chapter 63, which declares that any law passed by any legislature which is repugnant to the interests of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland is ipso facto, null and void. It is to comply with the requirements of that. Act, that clause 18 of the Bill be* fore the House has been inserted. Our fleet must remain at the disposal of England in case of emergency or otherwise this Bill will be ultra vires and null and void. Let me quote from the Act of 1865;

The term ' colony ' shall in this Act. include all of Her Majesty's possessions abroad in which there shall exist a legislature. . - . The term ' legislature ' and ' colonial legislature ' shall severally signify the authority other than the imperial parliament on His Majesty in Council, competent to make laws for any colony. Any colonial law which is or shall lie in any resjject repugnant to the provisions of any Act of parliament extending to the colony to which such law may relate, or repugnant to any law, order or regulation made under authority of such Act of parliament, or having in the colony the force and effect of such Act, shall he read subject to such Act, order or regulation, and shall to the extent of such repugnancy, but not otherwise, be and remain absolutely null and void.

Let me quote section 15 of the British North America Act;

The command in chief of the land and naval militia and of all naval and military forces, of and in Canada, is hereby declared to continue and be vested in the Queen.

After reading this Bill and the Acts of 1867 and 1661, every one must admit that this extends rather than restricts the autonomy of Canada. The famous question about the meaning of 'shall' or 'may' in this legislative enactment is reduced to naught.

Let me quote also clause 18 of Bill (No. 95) in which the interpretation of the word 'may' has given rise to such debate:

18. In case of an emergency the Governor in Council may place at the disposal of His Majesty, for general service in the Royal navy, the naval service or any part thereof, any ships or vessels of the naval service, and the officers and seamen serving in such ships or vessels, or any officers or seamen belonging to the naval service.

Should this Bill now before us be passed *without clause 18 it would be repugnant to section 15 of that imperial statute, the British North America Act, 1867, conforming to chapter 6, statute 1, Charles II, 1661, intituled, 'An Act declaring the sole right of the militia to be in the King and for the present ordering and disposing the same,' and also to the regulations made there-i-.nder, and for that very reason our Bill would be null and void. It is not also the proper time to remind this House that nobody but a pirate, and with all the due consequences thereof, can run a warship unless her commander is the bearer of a state patent since the declaration of Paris in 1856. Bill (No. 95) without its clause 18 would be enacted in violation of international law.

At six o'clock the House took recess.

After Recess.

House resumed at eight o'clock.

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LIB

Honoré Hippolyte Achille Gervais

Liberal

Mr. GERVAIS.

cur help towards England to-day go to secure for us the appointment of Anglo-Canadian consuls, I would be ready to ask this House to vote per year, not ten, or twenty cents, but $10 per head, for the establishment of such a system as _ would undoubtedly improve the commercial relations of Canada, and I would venture to state that as a result the trade of Canada would be three times larger than it is today. I speak of this important question of Anglo-Canadian consuls because it is very closely linked to that other question of extension of our external or maritime trade, which will be a new impetus under the escort of our fleet.

But there are many other advantages to Canada in the building of a fleet. It is undeniable that at one time Canada was the greatest ship-building country of America. The maritime trade spirit was alive and progressive. It was natural, because most of its inhabitants are descendants of mariners, they are the offspring of those marvellous sailors, the Norsemen, who discovered America, and started establishments on this continent about sixty years before Christopher Columbus secured for Spain the official paraphernalia necessary to grant her .so-called discovery rights. We all come, the most of us at least, from those Norsemen, from the stock of Normandy or the British Isles, who have braved the perils of the sea for at least ten centuries. Most of our immediate forefathers have been farming and trading in small towns for a couple of centuries, but, without claiming to be a prophet, I may assure the House that it will not take many years before the sons of farmers and traders and professional men can qualify for the re-conquest of thb great seas, the legacy one may say, by the law of nature, of the brave Norsemen of yore. Let us revive the industries of our ancestors.

Let me remind hon. gentlemen of somo of the many other advantages to be derived from the building of a fleet. Marine engineering, and the art of navigation, will receive a very great impetus from the adoption of the proposed plan.

Let me say, Sir, a few words to our students about the advantages they will reap from the building of our navy. The art and science of ship-building will go to a great extent to open new callings in life for the students in our special schools. With regard to those schools, allow me to give a few words of explanation. Let me open a very short chapter about the school system of Quebec that, will have some direct connection with the execution of the plan of the government. The students of our schools will have much to do with the construction, the manning, and the maintenance of our merchant and war fleet, for both will have to develop simultaneously.

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LIB

Honoré Hippolyte Achille Gervais

Liberal

Mr. GERVAIS.

And what about our academy of marine, or naval college, to complete the system of our special schools? Montreal, with its two universities, would be the ideal place to locate a naval college. In no place else in Canada can there be found a better place for a naval college, better professors, more modern laboratories, more valuable libraries and general educational equipment. I must tell the Quebec students, even those who have signed petitions against the passing of this Bill, just four things: That marine engineers occupy the first rank in the engineering world; that marine officers are the most learned and cultured men; that amongst their many intellectual gifts, they must speak many languages, and in every case the French language, which is the language of diplomacy, is that which is spoken by the marine officers of every state of the five continents, so that the building of our navy is a good means of making our French language honoured. While speaking of our Quebec students protesting against the passing of Bill 95, let me ask the hon. member for Jacques Cartier to present to them a few copies of that new book of Mr. Emile Foguet, ' Le Culte de lTncompe-tence,' or lecture them about experimental superiority of older men over young men. It is one of the many good maxims of Mietzche which he expresses in saying very properly:

A sign of nobility, a sign of aristocracy, such is the respect of youths for older men.

The other day I listened to a lengthy debate in this House about technical schools in Canada. Many things were said about foreign technical schools, but not one word to explain the tremendous progress which has been made in the province of Quebec for the establishment, side by side with its classical schools with their three degrees of efficiency, of a whole set of special schools, which I style a higher commercial school, where the science and art of foreign languages, of precis writing, commercial geography, state finance and industrial chemistry, and physics, are taught for the purpose of making men able) to manage commercial houses, and to pros mote commerical relations abroad. Wd have, in the province of Quebec, also established colleges of technology, or technical schools, where the theory of every art, from that of the plumber to that of the jeweller, will be taught by book and labora-i tory, and where also the practice of each such art will be impressed on the minds of the students by designs, tools, and hand! work. Alongside of these, schools of agri-t culture are "already established. At St. Ann's, and at Oka, agricultural experts will' be very shortly graduated for the purpose1 of establishing in nearly every county of the province of Quebec, agricultural labora-1

tories where inspection, examination and analysis of grain can be taught to the; farmers; all of which must eventually conduce to the benefit of our export trade. A>

school of forestry has also been established. The graduates of the school of forestry of Nancy, France, and Harvard, will teach the people of the province of Quebec how to preserve their natural resources and reafforest their woodland, thus securing the proper amount of moisture necessary to successful agriculture. In addition to these, McGill College and the Polytechnic school, in the teaching of civil engineering and the art of architecture, are ready to provide for our country, skilful engineers of all kinds, to wrest honourable profit from Canada's natural resources. I say this, in passing, for the purpose of show ing our students that something is in store for them out-of the building of our navy; and also for the purpose of telling the Minister of Labour and the members of the Technical School Commission when they come to inquire into the conditions of technical schools, that if they wish to be properly informed, they would do well to go to Quebec and stop there for a little while, before going elsewhere. It is to the everlasting glory of Sir Lomer Gouin, the Prime Minister of the province of Quebec, that he has built up a complete system of special schools alongside of the classical schools of that province, which will make of it before twenty years, one of the most learned centres in America.

I have been calling the attention of the House to our educational system, just to show that our would-be gunless and shipless defenders in Quebec are, after all, very neglectful of the interests of our students when they fail to see for all of them numerous advantages in the realization of the shipbuilding programme. Our graduates are perhaps the best equipped to benefit from the new policy. The construction of a fleet should also be approved of for the sake of our many special school students, who will therein find many and varied employments and callings. Quite a number of good positions surely will be secured for those students by the establishment of the new marine equipment. Our special school graduates will contribute in some way or other to the construction of the new fleet., and thereby contribute to th^ enhanced prosperity and greatness of Canada.

There are many other reasons for which I am ready to vote for the passing of this Bill. I will vote for the Bill, because:

1. It will cost but a trifle per head of our population to build a few ships which will help England, satisfy our obligations towards her, and gratify our national pride;

2. The expenditure of a few cents per year may go to secure for Canada the concession from England of the power of making treaties, of the power to appoint Anglo-

Canadian consuls, thereby securing for us benefits which will be a hundredfold greater to Canada than the total of our expenditure today;

3. I would rather stand by our parent state than depend upon American protection, I prefer British protection.

4. The building of a fleet will to a great extent help our classical and special school graduates;

5. It is in acordance with the dictum of the public law of England towards Canada, for it is not within the province of the latter to refuse any contribution to help England;

6. The creation of a Canadian navy will to a large extent tend to create for Canada new openings of trade, the establishment of new commercial agencies and negotiations of commercial treaties-three keys to the treasuries of the world;

7. This possession of a fleet is the best and only way to secure progress in peace for our country and to assure its everlasting prosperity.

For all these reasons, and many others, I appeal to this House, and to my constituents of St. James, not to begrudge a shilling a year for the maintenance of the prestige of England, and the enlargement of our national life.

And now, to those unthoughtful enough to close their eyes and stop their ears to the great lessons of history; to those who shout aloud that nothing should be done to defend Canada, to those who are continuously, dangerously, creating agitation, to all those who do not wish to give any kind of aid to England, whether they be representatives of the western grain growers, or agriculturists of Quebec, I would say this: You do not want any naval defence for Canada, you prefer to remain in statu quo, you are afraid of military and naval expenditure, let me remind you of a past which is still the present for us. If Canada, when she was a weak colony under the French monarchy, had followed the_ advice, the admonitions and prayers of that incomparable and immortal American statesman of the seventeenth century (though not born in America) Governor Frontenac, who implored France not to reconstruct the marvellous palace of Versailles, but to build a navy, to send soldiers to Nouvelle France, and to equip an army to protect its territory and the entrance of its Gulf of St. Lawrence, never would Wolfe have defeated Montcalm on the Plains of Abraham, and never would it have been possible for England to conquer Canada.

Yes, Mr, Speaker, should we have no navy, what Wolfe was able to do, one Von der Goltz or one Henri de Hohenzollhern, may try to repeat. Canada, being without 'naval defence, without coast protection, should ever a European conflict hold back

the English fleet in the North sea, the entrance of the St. Lawrence would he left undefended against a hostile fleet which would be able to anchor before Montreal with much less risk than in the Baltic sea. Sir, such a possibility should awake in the people of Canada, and more especially in my fellow citizens of Quebec, a strong desire to grant what is asked from them to secure both a defence of our coasts, and a compliance with the wishes of England. My fellow citizens of Quebec, I am sure-and here, 1 believe, I am expressing their inner sentiments-are ready to stand by England to-day, for we are indebted to England for the fairness with which England has treated us. Should I speak tonight in my own mother language, it vrould *be due to the liberality of England. The French and English languages -were for hundreds of years spoken in the mother parliament on the banks of the Thames, in the same way that Greek and Latin had been the official languages of the parliament of Rome. I beg leave to convey to the English speaking citizens of Canada tonight, the assurance that their French speaking friends will stand shoulder to shoulder with them for the maintenance of British institutions in Canada, as did, twenty centuries ago, our ancestors, the Gaelic senators when they joined the Roman senators in the defence of the state of Rome.

While I am saying all this, I cannot forbear from denouncing as infamous, the veiled charges of disloyalty which have been and are still being hurled agginst my compatriots. Sir, Quebec will always remember that beautiful sentiment enunciated by the distinguished Prime Minister of Canada at a Paris banquet in 1905: * To France, we owe our origin; to England, our liberty.'

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William Ross Smyth

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. WILLIAM R. SMYTH (East Algo-ma).

Mr. Speaker, I am sure you must be wearied of this debate, and I am Sure that this afternoon must have made you more wearied still. The hon. member for St. James, Montreal, (Mr. Gervais), has taken up nearly three hours of the time of this House, and I am sure that very few members of the House are much enlightened by what he has said. He started in with an argument against the Bill from a legal standpoint. But, like an old steeple-chase horse, -when he comes to the bank he is afraid to go over, and so lie turns and supports the Bill after all, though it is not just to his mind from a legal point of view. Some of the remarks of the hon. gentleman call to my memory something that happened in connection with our first attempt -I think it was our first-at what might he called Canadian diplomacy. The hon. member (Mr. Gervais) scored British diplomats in their efforts to settle the Mr. GERVAIS.

great questions between Canada, and the United States, and other countries. We all remember the commission that was appointed by this government, composed of the hon. member for North York (Mr. Aylesworth), Sir Louis Jette, and another whose name I have at the moment forgotten. These gentlemen did not bring such great results to Canada in connection with the Alaska boundary question with which they had to deal. Did not they allow a great deal of our territory to be taken away and given to the United States? So, I do not think we have much to complain of in British diplomacy in view of what our own representatives have done.

I do not purpose taking up much time, in fact, I should like to confine myself to within ten minutes. But, before entering into the question as to what my views are on the navy question, I must- first express my regret that the right hon. Prime Minister (Sir Wilfrid Laurier), took occasion to prove his loyalty to the British Crown -in fact, about three-quarters of the time of his speech was devoted to that purpose. If I ever felt proud of my leader (Mr. R. L. Borden) it was when he spoke in answer to the Prime Minister. It was not necessary for him to -waste one minute in proving,that he was loyal to the British Crown; every one knew where he stood.

I must also say something on behalf of my French Canadian friends, of whom I have a great many in my riding. In fact, I think that perhaps one-third of the electors in my riding are of French Canadian origin. I have no hesitation in saying that every one of them, so far as I know, is true and loyal to the core. But I think if the right hon. Prime Minister should go up into that country, and say some of the things he has said in this House, and on many an occasion outside, he would not be very welcome for those utterances. But the French Canadians of my constituency are true Canadians, and true British subjects. I almost wonder that they are in view of the statements made by the leaders of the French Canadian people in this Canada of ours. We have heard the Prime Minister himself declare his independence, and we have heard other hon. members giving us lectures on independence. I wish to call attention to some of the utterances of certain leaders of the French Canadian people in thik respect. I am proud to say that notwithstanding all that the leaders in this House can say, the French Canadian settler in the northern part of New Ontario-and, I think, all over the Dominion of Canada-are true and loyal. But one would wonder why gentlemen who occupy seats in this House, from the First Minister to the lowest back bencher among his followers, should endeavour to mislead the ideas and views of the French Canad-

ian people. We find, Sir, the hon. member for Nicolet (Mr. Turcotte), saying something in connection with independence. This is part of what he said, and I take it that this is a proper translation of the hon. gentleman's statement:

Independence appears in certain quarters to be a monster and a nightmare to those whose interest in Canada is small and secondary, and who have only the love and loyalty of the empire in their hearts. But I ask of these men, shall not Canada sooner or later have to choose between annexation and independence? Are we destined to remain a colony, and are not true Canadians who love their country before all others to have in their hearts a very legitimate ambition to see it free and independent? It suits badly those politicians who have a great many years' experience, who have seen unrolled great events and political changes which are to-day included in the history of our country, who have seen the nation grow, and who realize its possibilities and its resources. It is neither patriotic nor loyal on the part of these men to put obstacles in the way of the complete development of our political organization and to pretend that we ought always to dwell under the protection of the British flag. But, thank God, I am convinced that this will not be the case, and the creation of this naval fleet in my humble opinion is the last step towards independence.

Is that not preaching independence? Is that not a true expression of the opinions of many hon. gentlemen who sit on thq other side of the House? I take it that this voices the opinion of a great many hon. gentlemen opposite. He was greatly applauded when he made this statement. Further he says:

It is from this point of view particularly, and I might say exclusively, that I at the present time give my adhesion to the Liberal policy. I speak from a Canadian point of view, and I believe this view of the question is that of the majority of the electors of my county; indeed, I do not believe that it would be too much to affirm that it is that of the majority of the people of the province of Quebec.

There is something which is addressed to the French Canadian electors, and I

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Gustave Adolphe Turcotte

Liberal

Mr. G. A. TURCOTTE.

Will my hon. friend allow me to ask him a question? Did he remark in my speech a sentence in which I said that i would never consent to independence unless England would consent to it and that it would come through good will and not otherwise?

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William Ross Smyth

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SMYTH.

I will answer by asking my hon. friend another question-if he denies that he made the statement that I have just read.

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William Ross Smyth

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SMYTH.

Well, that is the answer. We have another hon. gentleman who has, 158

during his life time, spoken of independence. The hon. Postmaster General (Mr. Lemieux) once gave utterance to something of this nature. I must confess that he is very eloquent and ready to do as he is bidden. I do not know whether he has been whipped into line or not. I am going to read an extract from a paper called ' L'Evenement,' published at Quebec. It states that:

Postmaster General Lemieux moved at the Club Rationale, some years ago, the following

resolution:-

That while admiring the English constitutional system the members of this club are in favour of obtaining by constitutional means the independence of our country and its complete emancipation from all European alliances.

I would like to ask the Postmaster General if that is correct?

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March 8, 1910