March 10, 1910

LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux (Postmaster General)

Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

The department, at a time considerably previous to the recommendation -made by the commission in reference to mail cars, had approached the different railways ill regard to improving the character and size of the cars in which the railway mail work is performed. All new cars aTe now built under the supervision of a departmental officer, who is thoroughly conversant with the requirements of the service both as regards size and equipment. No car is built by the railway without first notifying the department, -so that they may receive the services of the above officer, and when finished, before being placed on the road, are inspected by such officer, and the department notified) as to whether such cars are suitable or not.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   RAILWAY MAIL CLERKS.
Permalink

NEW DEPARTMENTAL BUILDING.

CON

Mr. MARSHALL:

Conservative (1867-1942)

1. Does the government intend to use Canadian stone in the construction of the new

government departmental building on Sussex street ?

2. Have tbe architects been instructed by the minister to specify Canadian stone?

3. If so, what kind of stone will be specified, sandstone, * limestone or granite?

i. Will the plans be prepared by the government architects, or others chosen outside the government service?

5. When will tenders be called for the said departmental building on Sussex street?

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   NEW DEPARTMENTAL BUILDING.
Permalink
LIB

William Pugsley (Minister of Public Works)

Liberal

Hon. WM. PUGSLEY.

All these matters are under consideration.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   NEW DEPARTMENTAL BUILDING.
Permalink

THE NAVAL SERVICE OF CANADA.


House resumed the-adjourned debate on the motion of Sir Wilfrid Laurier for the second reading of Bill (No. 95) respecting the naval service of Canada.


CON

William Barton Northrup

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. W. B. NORTHRUP (East Hastings).

Mr. Speaker, any one who has observed the evolution of this Bill now before the House and has watched its history since it first saw the light on the 3rd of February last, must, I am sure, be convinced that at its conception some irate goddess was present to throw the apple of discord into Canadian politics. We have spent a considerable time in the discussion of the amendment, and of the amendment to the amendment, on the motion for the second reading of this Bill, and now that the decks have been cleared and both amendments disposed of, we are face to face with the Bill itself. I have no hesitation, Sir, in expressing my frank opinion that the measure at present before the House is one quite beyond the competency of this House to pass, and, I believe that if this House presumes to pass the present measure, and if the humblest township council in my constituency should the following day pass a by-law to repeal it, one enactment would be just as valid as the other, and each equally ridiculous. Of course it must be admitted that there are two views as to the position occupied by this House. On the one hand there is the view of the right hon. gentleman who leads the government, as laid down by him in addressing the Ontario Club in Toronto on the 5th of Januarv last, and quoting from the ' Globe ' of the 6th of January, I find that the right hon. gentleman stated his views with regard to the powers of this parliament in the following language:

We are under tbe suzerainty of the King of England; we are his loyal subjects; we bow the knee to him, but the King of England lias no more rights over us than are allowed him by our own Canadian parliament.

I quite admit, Sir, that if that view of the law is correct, then this Act is beyond question within the competency of this parliament. But, there is another view of the law, and I venture to say that this other view is held by every judge, every lawyer, Mr. MARSHALL.

every statesman in the empire with the single exception of the Prime Minister of Canada. It would be idle for me to occupy time here to-day to try to convince the members of this House that we are legislating here exclusively under the powers conferred on us by an imperial enactment passed by the parliament of the motherland. That which gives can take away, and however improbable it may be and however unfortunate the results might be if the imperial parliament were to repeal the British North America Act, still it is idle for any of us to pretend for a moment that the imperial parliament has not that power. If there were any doubt on the subject, it would surely be settled by the history of such questions as our Copyright Act, with regard to which it was held that this House had no power to pass legislation which was repugnant to legislation passed by the imperial parliament. Our courts in Canada have again and again held to the same effect. While some hon. gentlemen may think there is magic in the words ' exclusive right ' in the British North America Act with regard to certain subjects of legislation conferred on this parliament, the courts of the land have held, and their decision has never been contested that when the word ' exclusive ' is used in the British North America Act, it merely means exclusive as between this Dominion and the provinces. A certain amount of power is given to the Dominion exclusively, and certain other powers are given to the provinces exclusively, but over and above the exclusive powers of both this Dominion and the provinces of Canada is the paramount power of the imperial parliament to legislate on any question on which it sees fit to legislate. If there were any shadow of a doubt on this point, it would be set at rest by the Imperial Act of 29 Victoria, the Colonial Laws Validity Act, which provides ;

Any colonial law which is or shall be in any respect repugnant to the provisions of any Act of parliament extending to the colony to' which such law may relate, or repugnant to any order or regulation made under authority of such Act of parliament, or having in the colony the force and effect of such Act, shall be read subject to such Act, order, or regulation, and shall, to the extent of such repugnancy, but not otherwise, be and remain absolutely void and inoperative.

Without occupying further time on this point, I submit that it is perfectly clear that the position taken by the right hon. the First Minister at Toronto on the fifth of January last is one that he would hardly care to defend on the floor of this House.

Then, if the other view De taken, that we are subject to the legislative powers of the imperial parliament, we are subject and bound in the same way that it is bound, with regard to one of the great

sources of power, and that is the royal prerogative. There is sometimes a great deal said about the royal prerogative by those who, one is inclined to suspect, do not quite understand what it means. Those who have studied the subject know that the royal prerogative is not a matter of to-day nor of yesterday, but that in the dim and distant days of the past, before parliament was ever dreamed of, there was a mass of law, which, with the subsequent accretions, makes the common law of England to-day; and the executive officer who administered that law was the King, who thus acquired prerogatives; and to-day the King possesses every prerogative possessed by any King of England for the last thousand years, save and except so far as that has been limited by statutory legislation.

It may be said by some hon. gentlemen that we in this country have from time to time limited the royal prerogative, and so we have. We have limited it in the past and we can limit it in the future; but it depends altogether on what branch of the royal prerogative we propose to touch. The standard works on the royal prerogative point out that among the subjects to which it extends there are some which are local in England-for example, the power to pardon an offence. Similarly the exercise of the power of pardon in Canada is local, attached only to this country, and we have a right in the proper way to regulate the exercise of that prerogative-not by this House, but by the constitutional advisers of His Excellency in a manner with which this House has nothing to do. All that this House can do is to punish the constitutional advisers of His Excellency if they do wrong; but the power of pardon is altogether outside of the legislative branch of our system.

Then, there is another branch of the royal prerogative which extends throughout the whole empire, which is the basis of the empire, upon which it may be said that the empire rests. Surely it cannot be contended that this parliament has any power under the British North America Act to interefere with a prerogative which extends throughout the empire and is one of the foundation stones on which the empire itself rests. One has only to remember the situation of the King in olden days to see how this prerogative arose. The King lead his people to war, fought at the head of his people, often stained the battlefield with his blood, and consequently as the war-chief of the people acquired certain prerogatives, such as the right to make war, the right to make peace, the right to make treaties, the right to send ambassadors to other countries; and there is nothing in the statute-book of Great Britain, and there can be nothing in the statute-books of this country, giving us the right to interfere 162i

with any of these prerogatives of the King.

Then, the king had other prerogatives acquired as the great landlord of the country. Among these was the right of forfeiture and escheat. An escheat arising within the bounds of Canada might be held, as it has been held by our courts, to be a colonial matter, and the Crown, as represented by the Lieutenant Governor of a province, might exercise that right. But it has been held, in a case in which an estate in England, belonging to a man residing in New South Wales, who had committed a felony, was forfeited to the Crown, that the Crown, as represented by the authorities in England, was entitled to a portion of the estate. The man went to New South Wales, and while there committed a crime, and the question was, how was his estate to be escheated, if at all? But the courts held, that inasmuch as the royal prerogative was not confined to the soil of England, but extended to wherever the flag of England floated, forfeiture in New South Wales was as complete as it was in England. So that unless we take the position that this parliament has a right to deal with matters which appertain to the royal prerogative applied to imperial matters we have a right to say that this Bill is ultra vires.

How am I justified in saying that this Bill deals with matters which can only be dealt with by the royal prerogative? Simply because if you look at the statute-book of England, you will fail to find one word that limits or fetters the royal prerogative with regard to control of the navy. The army and navy formerly stood on the same footing. The people of England for centuries have had such an inherent dread of the danger of a standing army to their permanent liberties, that they have always kept control of the army by legislation, so that even the Mutiny Act had to be passed every year. But the navy has always been the idol of the people of England, for they have felt that they owe their supremacy on the seas to the navy, and they have been willing to leave the control of it in the hands of the sovereign. A thousand years ago the king's prerogative extended to the navy to such an extent that he could levy a tax for its support. The old Saxon 'Chronicle' of 1008 tells us that Ethelred taxed every 300 miles of land with the cost of a ship. Later, in the days of the tlantagenets, when a navy was required by Richard, we find that some of the vessels were built and paid for out of the royal purse, which in those days was practically for the public, though they had no control over it. Many of the vessels of the royal navy, in those days, were mercenaries, hired and paid for out of the royal purse alone, and parliament never pretended in any way to interfere.

In the reign of Edward III., the Lord

51X1

High Admiral of England was appointed, and he continued until 1708, until the death of Prince George of Denmark, the last High Admiral. But his place was taken by the board of commissioners with the same power, so that practically, with only the difference of a change of name, the Lord High Admiral continued from Edward III., 1700, until the present day. Even in the days of the Spanish Armada, when the Crown rallied the ships to protect the land, it was the royal power that acted, and although there were 170 ships in the royal fleet at that time, only some 34 were actually vessels of the royal navy. The others were hired and paid for out of the royal purse. Thus the royal prerogative continued all down the line.

Coming to modern days, we find that the Board of Admiralty in England controls the navy. Whatever the Lord High Admiral did in days gone by, he does still, and parliament in no way interferes, except to furnish the funds for maintaining the navy, and leaves the control of the navy, as it always has been, in the hands of the sovereign. If there were any doubt about that, an Act was passed, 28 Victoria, to make better provision for the naval defence of the empire, and any pretense which this Bill has to validity at all must be based on the Act, 29 Victoria, and the Act of 1909 of the imperial parliament, which recognizes and is founded upon this Defence Act of 1865. What is the imperial statute of 1865 with regard to navies being founded by colonies? It is provided in the third section as follows:

In any colony it shall be lawful for the proper legislative authority, with the approval of Her Majesty in Council, from time to time, to make provision for effecting at the expense of the colonies all or any of the purposes following:-First, for providing, maintaining and using a vessel or vessels of war

That seems to be the object of this Bill.

-subject to such conditions and for such purposes as Her Majesty in Council from time to time approves.

In this statute we have thus a clear and unmistakable expression of the opinion of the imperial parliament as to the rights which the colonies had regarding the founding of a navy. Then, in 1909, another Act was passed to amend the Act I have just read, entitled the Colonial Naval Defence Act of 1865, and I presume it is a fair conclusion to draw that, if after the excitement of last year, if after all the imperial conferences on the subject of defence, if after the famous resolution of the 29th March, 1909, had been submitted to the imperial authorities-if after all these the imperial parliament saw fit to pass an Act to give certain powers to the colonies, it is a fair presumption that the colonies Mr. NORTHRHP.

would not have those powers if that Act had not passed. Otherwise, we must assume that the imperial parliament was ignorant of the laws they had adopted, and had passed a Colonial Defence Act for the purpose of giving the colonies powers they already possessed.

This Act of last year gives the colonies the power to provide that volunteers raised in the colonies shall form part of the royal naval volunteer reserve, so thaV the most important part of this Bill is clearly based on the imperial legislation of last session. I have contended that all along the line the sovereign, by his prerogative power is the commander of the navy. If we look at the British North America Act, clause 15, we find a significant expression used. The British North America Act does not profess to give any new powers to the King. It seems to follow in the footsteps of the famous statute of Charles II., which recognized the power the King already had; and so this section 15 of the British North America Act provides that the command of the navy shall continue in and be vested in the King. The clause is as follows:

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

There is no pretense that when the Act was passed the imperial parliament conferred on her Majesty any powers she did not at that time possess, and therefore, by the careful choice of language, instead of declaring that the power is vested in the Queen, the clause expressly says that it is hereby declared to continue, and be vested in the Queen. But perhaps more significant language in connection with that legislation is this. If we look at the preliminary draft of the union of the British North America Act colonies, in which practically everything was provided foT with a few minor exceptions, we find the following:

The command in chief of all armed forces raised in the united colony, or in any province, for service by land or by water, shall be vested in Her Majesty, Her heirs and successors.

So that this country apparently, in the first instance, had made a provision to give Her Majesty the command in chief of all our forces. But when the Bill came before the statesmen of the motherland, they struck out the clause conveying the idea that any new powers were conferred on Her Majesty, and they determined on a clause which said that the command shall continue to be, and is vested in the Queen. I do not wish to elaborate on that subject, but it does seem to me that when we find in England a total absence from legislation-because the only statute that will be found relating to the navy along this line at all is the famous statute of Charles

II., but that does not profess to confer any powers, because it is merely a declaratory statute declaring what the land of England always has been, and what I submit, it has been from that day to this-when we find a total absence of any legislation conferring new powers on the King, we may take it for granted that the command in chief of the navy was always vested in him. Perhaps a little light may be shed on this, if we look at the proceedings in a neighbouring colony. In Australia there was a movement to found a navy just as in this country. Without taking up time in going through the preliminary steps up to 1902,

I may say that hon. members in this House are aware that in the imperial conference of 1902 the proposal was made that Australia should, as it were, go into partnership with the motherland in founding a navy, and the first step taken was this. An agreement was made between the office of the Lord High Admiral of the United Kingdom, and the Commonwealth of Australia, and New Zealand, and that agreement was subject to ratification by the Commonwealth parliament, and it came before the Commonwealth parliament, and is embodied in the statute which I hold in my- hand-a statute passed subsequent to the Colonial Conference Act, which provides that a colony can build, equip and maintain vessels subject to such conditions as Her Majesty in Council might approve. What did the Australian parliament do? I shall only read the preamble of their Act:

Having recognized the importance of sea power in the control which it gives over-sea communications, the necessity of a single navy under one authority, by which alone concerted action can be assured, and the advantages which will be derived from developing the sea power of Australia and New Zealand, have resolved to conclude for this purpose an agreement as follows:-

And that is the agreement under which Australia proceeded to found her navy.

The Australian Naval Defence Act was passed in the same session-statute 20 of 1903. There is a clause in that Act which has been referred to several times as showing that what the Australians have done is the same as we have proposed to do under this Bill-that is, in case of war, parliament has control of the vessels. Why, Sir, the clause in that Act does not relate to vessels at all, but relates to the forces. It provides that when tho forces aTe called out, parliament must be notified. Here is the section:

53. In time of war, the Governor General may, subject to the provisions of this Act, place the defence force or any part thereof under the orders of the commander of any portion of the King's regular forces or the King's regular naval forces as the case may be.

The interpretation clause of the Act provides that the defence forces do not include vessels at all, but only men who have been enlisted, and who are serving in the Australian forces-not in reference to the navy itself, but merely a provision as to what they can do with the forces they have enlisted. Then, last session, the session of 1909, the parliament of Australia passed another defence Act, which is in addition to the one I have read which was amended in 1904. The defence Act of last session contains no provision of any kind about the ships, but only explains the powers of the government with regard to enlistment, training and discipline, after the men are enlisted. In that Bill, relating to naval and military defence, there is not a word about the navy. But another Bill was brought before the House, the Colonial Loan Bill, and that provides for the raising of a large sum of money-if I remember rightly $17,000,000. Under this Bill it is provided that the money is to be expended along the line of an agreement made last year between Australia and the imperial authorities. Now, if we look at the blue-book of last year, we shall find what the line taken there was as to the agreement between the colonies, and the motherland. After providing for the fleet unit, and other matters it says:

Further, as it is a sine qua non that successful action in time of war depends upon the unity of command and direction, the general discipline must be the same throughout the whole imperial service, and without this it would not be possible to arrange for that mutual co-operation and assistance which would be indispensable in the building up and establishing of a local naval force in close connection with the Royal navy. It has been recognized by the colonial governments

That would include Canada, I presume.

-that in time of war the loyal naval forces should come under the general directions of the admiralty.

And so, Sir, the money which the Australian government has asked the people to borrow to establish their navy is to be spent along the lines of an agreement with the admiralty the words of which I have just read. Thus we find no authority from the sister colony to justify us in our contention that it is right and proper for Canada to have a navy of her own, which will help the imperial authorities in time of war, or which may decline to fight or run away and hide as parliament may decide.

I think I have shown that there is grave doubt as to the power ot this parliament to pass this legislation. And if there is a shadow of doubt, I submit, it is the duty of the government to refer the matter to the Supreme Court, that there may be no possibility of conflict between us, and the motherland on so important a question. It

is well known that the unfortunate rebellion which led to the loss of the thirteen colonies of America arose over the subject of defence. I can understand how delicate a position the home authorities would be placed in, if the navy which is provided for in this Bill were to be called into use for the purposes of the empire. I can understand the tremendous sensibility there would be on the part of the imperial authorities if they had to consider the vetoing of such an Act, even if they thought it improperly passed, for fear they might in that way weaken the ties which exist between us, and the motherland. Therefore, I think I am justified in asking the Prime Minister (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) to submit the matter to the Supreme Court of this country, that it may be decided beyond peradventure that we have the right to do what no other colony has attempted to do, and what, unless this Bill is saved by some agreement between the government and the King in Council of which this House has no knowledge, is in contravention of the terms of the Colonial Defence Act of 1865.

Having said so much on the question of jurisdiction, another question naturally arises when one considers this Act-and I am, in the first place, looking at it as it presents itself to a person at first blush on the arguments used in its support when it was presented. So far as I am aware, none of the hon. members who have spoken on the Bill have touched the point I now wish to raise. On that point we in this country are in a position which is not altogether pleasant or satisfactory-the question -of naturalization. I have here the Naturalization Act and also the Imperial Naturalization Act of 1870. But I suppose there is no doubt in the mind of anybody that the law is as I am about to state it-that Canada has no more power to naturalize a man and make him a British subject, except within the bounds of Canada itself, than has the city council of Ottawa. That is a serious matter, and yet the fact is beyond peradventure. A German comes here bringing his son with him and settles in the county of my hon. friend (Mr. Clare), who spoke so well yesterday, a county represented in part also by the Minister of Labour (Mr. King). Father and son become attached to this land and fulfil the conditions of our naturalization laws. If, in an unhappy hour, that which we hope may never occur, should occur and war should break out between Great Britain and Germany, then should these men volunteer in the Canadian navy and be unhappily captured by the German fleet, -what would be their position-when put upon trial for their lives, not as belligerents, hut as traitors? There is no question about it. They may come to Canada and be naturalized so far Mr. NORTHRUP.

as men. can be naturalized under our laws, but the only rights given under our laws are such as can be conferred within the bounds of Canada. It is true, the imperial authorities, as a matter of courtesy, of grace-purely a matter of courtesy and grace-are in the habit of issuing passports to Canadian citizens, whether they be such by birth or naturalization, under which they have the support of Great Britain in every part of the world-except, so far as foreign-born citizens are concerned, the land of their birth. That is, the very place where the man who comes here wants to be protected is the place where he cannot be protected. Would it be fair to have a Canadian navy under such conditions that, if we were at war and any man of foreign birth-for the same would apply in the case of the United States as I have just suggested in the case of Germany-were to serve in that navy, it would be under the conditions I have stated? Are we prepared to have a navy under such conditions that when the proclamation is issued for men to serve in it, we must say ' except Germans,' 'except Frenchmen,' except American '-in fact, limiting it to 'Canadians born? Yet, unless we are prepared to do that, is it right for the government to propose to set afloat a navy under such conditions that a man of foreign birth desiring to enlist and do his duty to the country of his adoption, must fight not as a belligerent, but as a traitor with the rope around his neck? I think that if one-tenth of the' assiduity applied to other things had been applied by the government to obtaining for us in Canada the same rights that they have in Great Britain -with regard to these foreigners we should have obtained those rights before now. For it is well known that every country the world over considers that when a subject is born in that land he is a subject to the day of his death, and his son after him also; and the reason for the difference in the, rights of a German, for instance settling in Canada or England, is that the status of a German coming to England, and being naturalized, possessing all the rights of a British subject, and protected in those rights by the British government, is wholly owing to treaty. Are we to expect foreigners coming to this country to have a love for this country, to have an affection for this country and a respect for this country, when we ask them to fight on our navy in the position of felons with a rope about their necks? I believe that at this moment the people of this country recognize that the greatest problem we have before us is to assimilate the great population flowing into our northwest. We all recognize that no other country has ever had to face so difficult a problem as to take these im-

mense hordes of people from different countries, born under different flags, coming into Canada and to assimilate them and make true Canadians of them; and I venture to say that the.' best way to make true Canadians of them is to raise their Tesipect for Canadian citizenship and make them desire to possess it. But if we must admit that the Canadian naturalized foreigner is on a distinctly inferior position to the United States naturalized foreigner, then I am afraid we can hardly expect from these new-comers that respect for our country, that respect for Canadian citizenship, and that respect for the privileges of a British subject of this great empire, that we would love to instill into -him. I hope the government will take this matter into consideration and impress it on the imperial authorities. If I understand aright Germany has given the same right to Great Britain that she has accorded to the United States, and the only trouble is that the power which extends this right of naturalizing subjects requires a residence of five years, in the adopted country, and iwe have not been willing to extend the term of residence in Canada to five years, and until we do that we shall be deprived of this boon. I think that even if the appalling result were reached that at the next election we should find that some of these aliens were unable to vote, even that would be compensated for by the fact that by the next election they would toe full fledged British subjects with all the rights of any other British subject who lives under the flag.

Now, I will proceed to make a few remarks on the Bill introduced by the right hon. gentleman. I listened carefully to the right hon. gentleman's speech, I have since studied it very carefully, and while I admire its eloquence, while I could even be -moved in -some passages by its pathos, I must_ confess that even if I take a little more time of the House than some hon. gentlemen might be willing to accord me, I am only following in the foot-steps of the right hon. gentleman who in 26 columns of the Hansard', had only nine and a quarter that even remotely referred to any subject that -could relate to the Canadian Naval Bill. What were the reasons given by the government for this Bill? Only three reasons can be found. I challenge any hon. gentleman to read the speech and find more than three reasons why this House should support the Bill. The first reason was that this House is already committed to the principle of the Bill by the resolution passed on the 29th of March, 1909. The second is that this Bill is carrying out the reform policy which has -been laid before the people of this country in the last eight years and

that this Reform government has been carrying out ever since; and the third is that the spirit of autonomy, which in some way floats about and appears to harass some of our members, compels us to pass this Bill. Beyond these three reasons, I challenge any hon. gentleman to find a reason advanced by the right hon. gentleman in moving this Bill, or any mandate from the people suddenly to plunge this country, not merely into an enormous expense-though that is the least objection- but to put this country in the position of entirely altering its relationship with the motherland and with the rest of the empire. And when we find gentlemen standing up in this House and deliberately telling this House that they support this Bill because it is the last step towards independence, I think we who are opposed to the Bill are justified in regarding it with very grave suspicion.

Now, as to the resolution of the 29th of March, of which we have heard so much, I am afraid that in what I have to say I may be standing alone, differing from both sides of the House. But I wish to speak impartially, I wish to speak intelligently, and I hope that hon. gentlemen will do me the justice of listening carefully to the point I wish to make. In this famous resolution there are four clauses. As to three of them I will say nothing, because I am not aware that any member of this House to-day differs from the sentiments -expressed in three of the clauses. But the one which the government relies upon as a justification for this Naval Bill is the one to which I would like to call attention, and I would ask members of this House to consider, not as a matter of politics at all, for there are no politics in the view I am taking of it now, but merely as a matter of the intelligent use of the English language. I would like to ask hon. gentlemen to read that clause and tell me what it means. It evidently is not perfectly clear, it is not a lucid clause, because the right hon. gentleman considers it means one thing, and the leader of the opposition considers it means an entirely different thing; and when we find two gentlemen of their ability agreeing that it is at all events susceptible of two meanings, there is some justification for going a step further and saying that if it does not mean what the right hon. gentleman says, nor what the leader of the opposition says, then it does not mean anything under heaven that anybody can see. That may seem a preposterous statement, but it is the simplest thing to prove, if people would only come down from the consideration of matters beyond the jurisdiction of this House to a few words in an English sentence. We will try and see what it does mean. This is the clause:

This House will cordially approve of any necessary expenditure designed to promote the organization of a Canadian naval service.

I will stop there for a moment. Now, is there any doubt about the meaning of that? This House will cordially approve of any necessary expenditure designed to promote the organization of a Canadian naval service. That might have two meanings. The words ' Canadian naval service ' might refer only to this naval militia, which is to be a part Of this Bill, or it might include vessels as well as militia. But when we go further in the clause and find that it is to be along the lines of the admiralty plan, then these words must mean that the House will approve of the necessary expenditure to promote -the speedy organization of a Canadian navy; and I think that is a fair rendering of these words. Now let us read further:

A Canadian naval service in co-operation with and in close relation to the imperial navy.

These words are clear enough, surely ' In co-operation with and in close relation to the imperial navy.' Now, no navy can co-operate with itself, no navy can' be in close relationship to itself; therefore it is clear that these words signify a Canadian navy as distinct from the imperial navy. I think there is no question that is the fair meaning of the words; inasmuch as no navy can co-operate with itself, there must be two navies. We have two navies, one imperial, under imperial control, and the other under Canadian control. What comes next?

In co-operation with and in close relation to the imperial navy, along the lines suggested by the admiralty at the last imperial conference.

Let us see what were the lines suggested by the admiralty at the last imperial conference. If we look at the blue-book of the imperial conference held in 1907, which was the last one when this resolution was passed, at pages 129 and 130, we will find what the idea of the imperial conference was. Lord Tweedmouth laid down his views:

I have here drawn up a short statement of v.hat may be called the general principle with which the admiralty desire to meet the representatives of the self-governing dominions of the King beyond the seas.

His Majesty's government recognize the natural desire of the self-governing colonies to have a more particular share in providing the naval defence force of the empire-

And observe this:

-and, so long as the condition of unity of command and direction of the fleet is maintained, they are ready to consider a modification of the existing arrangements to meet the views of the various colonies.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE NAVAL SERVICE OF CANADA.
Permalink
CON

William Barton Northrup

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. NORTHROP.

So long as the condition of unity of command and direction of the fleet is maintained. We have our two navies provided for, the imperial navy and the Canadian navy along the lines laid down by the admiralty, and the admiralty lines are that there must be one navy, because there must be unity of command and a common direction. So, we have the navy carefully provided for, and in order that it might have meant something, I think it would have been well if the resolution had gone a little farther and said that the navy should always sail due north by due south. It would have been just as reasonable as the kind of language that appears there, because those twx>

clauses are absolutely contradictory of each other, and it will be absolutely impossible to carry them into effect. There are a few more words which will perhaps help us. I have not the slightest doubt that they had a great deal of weight with hon. gentlemen opposite and with the country. In the resolution of the 29th March, 1909, there are the concluding words. This is a navy which was to be under Canadian control and subject to unity of command and the direction of the admiralty, and in addition we find in the resolution which was passed last year that it is to be:

In full sympathy with the view that the naval supremacy of Great Britain is essential to the security of commerce, the safety of the empire and the peace of the w orld.

Are not these words enough to bring tears to one's eyes? They would, if they meant anything, but like the rest of the clause they do not mean anything. Suppose His imperial Majesty the Kaiser of Germany were reading this resolution of the 29th March, would he not be quite willing to subscribe to it? He might- say that he was in full sympathy with the declaration that the naval supremacy of Great Britain is essential to the security of commerce. He might not want the commerce of Great Britain to ;be secure, but he could assent to the proposition that the supremacy of the navy of Great Britain is essential to the security of her commerce. He would agree as every one does that the navy is essential to the safety of the empire. If he did not want the peace of the world, if the peace of the world that he wanted, was a peace spelled in a little different way, he might take the words in this general high-flown proposition to mean just as much, and no more, as those which are to be found in the rest of this clause. So, we find the government in this position: They have this resolution passed by this House, and they go over to the old country and tell the authorities there that they are going to have a navy based upon that resolution, which being an absolutely mean-

ingless resolution, leaves them in a position to do nothing or to do anything as they see fit.

One word more as to this resolution of the 29th March. I was one of those who were not present in the House on that night, and I have never considered myself bound by that resolution, not that I care particularly, because the other three clauses are absolutely unobjectionable. I do not think anybody would dissent from them, while this clause I have just quoted is absolutely meaningless. If it had undertaken.to endorse the principle of A, B, C, D, and so on to the end of the alphabet, it would have been just as effective. This resolution was brought up on the 29t,h March, which was a private members' day. The hon. member for North Toronto (Mr. Poster) introduced this resolution on a private members' day, at a time which many hon. members of this House did not think was altogether the proper time for that debate. It was within his rights as a private member to introduce it if he saw fit. But, in introducing it, he was careful to explain that this was a subject which should be kept outside of party politics. The right hon. leader of the government (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) assented to that proposition. He, too, was qnite willing that this question should be kept outside of party politics, as was said to be the case in England. Those who differed from him, those who wished to see a different kind of resolution adopted by the Canadian parliament, thought it would be a most unfortunate time to divide the opinion of this House, the German scare being then on the horizon, and when individuals were discussing a motion brought in by individuals upon a subject which was declared not to be political, but outside of party politics, it was thought wiser to allow those gentlemen to settle their motion in any way they liked, and those gentlemen only who were in the House when that motion was passed would be -bound by it. To show the soundness of that position, let me give you this illustration. Would any hon. gentleman sitting behind the right hon. leader of the government, or sitting behind my hon. friend the leader of the opposition, be prepared to put his conscience into the hands of his leader and say to his leader: I agree to any proposition that you may agree to in the absence either of a convention or a caucus? Would any hon. gentleman place his conscience so fully in his leader's hands that he would accept and vote for any proposition no matter what it was about, that his leader should assent to? There would be very few members of this House who would be prepared to go as far as that. Unless a member is prepared to go to that length he could not possibly have any justification for

saying that any member who was not present when that resolution was assented to should be bound by it. Late that evening the hon. gentleman who spoke last on the other side of the House, in the exercise of his legal rights, and I am finding no fault with him, addressed the House in the French language. Without the least disrespect to the hon. gentleman who so spoke, because he had a perfectly legal right to take the course that he did take, it is hardly reasonable to expect that an hon. gentleman who did not understand that language which was spoken after eleven o'clock at' night should be listening to words that were wholly foreign to his ears. Therefore, as a matter of fact, on this occasion, practically all the members were outside of the Chamber believing that they could do no possible good if they were in the House. Suddenly the bell sounds, the House is adjourned and it is announced that the resolution is agreed to. The fact is that a large number of the members of this House had no more to do with that resolution than the Shah of Persia, because they neither discussed nor assented to it. So much for the first ground taken by the government that this Bill should be carried because it is in pursuance of the resolution of the 29th March. Then, the next ground taken by the right bon. leader of the government was that this Bill was in pursuance of the policy which was laid down by the present government eight years ago and faithfully adhered to ever since. Not only had it been adhered to for some years, but the suggestion was made to the House that Robert Baldwin, and Louis Hippolyte Lafontaine were in some way or other interested in this policy, as it had been the policy of the party ever since its formation, and those who followed then were bound to assist in carrying through this Bill. As a matter of fact this has not been the policy of the government for eight years. Eight years ago these conferences commenced by the invitation which came from Mr. Joseph Chamberlain, then colonial secretary, to Lord Minto at that time Governor General of Canada. Similar invitations were sent to the other colonial dominions beyond the seas and they were cheerfully assented to by all these dominions except Canada. Canada sent a reply, which I shall not take the time to read unless my version of it is disputed, that Canada was getting along very comfortably, that there were no questions to discuss except trade_ questions, and it would be idle to spend time in discussing the problem of defence, as the colonies could not possibly agree. Then, again in 1902, the right hon. the leader of the government undertook to send a Canadian representative to England^ to discuss the question, but this certainly

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Thomas Aaron Hartt

Dr. SMARTT.

I think it is a great pity we do not pass something. We have done so much ill the way of pious affirmation, that I am anxious we should do something of a practical character. .

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LIB

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

Liberal

Sir WILPRID LAURIER.

It can be passed if there is a majority. For my part I must vote against it.

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Henry Alfred Ward

Sir JOSEPH WARD.

To do any good we would require to be unanimous about it.

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Thomas Aaron Hartt

Dr. SMARTT.

Yes, I suppose so.

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Charles Edward Church

Mr. WINSTON CHURCHILL.

It is not much good to have a resolution at all if we cannot be unanimous.

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LIB

Gilbert Howard McIntyre (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

The CHAIRMAN.

I think we had better not proceed any further just now.

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Sir W ILFRID LAURIER@

Wh, of the different dominions beyond the seas, have tried

to be unanimous up to the present time. I am sorry to say this is a question upon which we could not be unanimous. Therefore, Dr. Smartt can move it if he chooses or withdraw it, but if he presses it I should have to vote against it.

And so this government comes before this House to-day with a naval defence scheme which 'they say jis the honest, faithful policy they have adopted and carried out for eight years, is the very government that in the year 1907 voted against any contribution even in a form that would be agreed upon by the local legislatures. And, Mr. Speaker, if we go back a little further we will find the impression made on the authorities of the motherland by the representatives of the Dominion of Canada. I submit it to the members of this House, who, however we may differ in our political oninions, should at least be equally possessed of self respect and pride, and I would like to ask the members of this House if there is a man on either side of the House who can feel his cheek flushed with honest, loyal, just pride when he hears the opinion of the Dominion of Canada expressed by Lord Tweedmouth at page 420 of the conference report, 1907. Lord Tweedmouth said:

_ There is at present no proposition from Canada to make any change at all.

We were not doing anything, we never had done anything, we were the only one of all the over-seas dominions that had not done anything, and 3trange to say all these that had been doing something were ready to add to what they had been doing, even down to little Newfoundland, but Canada was the only colony which wished to do nothing in the future, just as she had done in the past. Lord Tweedmouth continued:

But I think it is proposed that matters shall go oa very much as they have gone on-

And here is where Canada shines:

-except that the Canadian representatives announce that they are anxious to do all that they can to expand the interests of the navy throughout the dominion, and in that way think that they will be really giving a great help to the empire as a whole.

That was to be the contribution of Canada to the upkeep of the navy; that was to be the contribution of Canada towards the supremacy of the greatest empire the world has ever seen and which every one recognizes depends for its existence on the navy. The contribution of the largest and the richest and up to late days the proudest of all the over seas dominions was that we were anxious to do all we could to expand the interest of the navy throughout the Dominion. I sincerely hope that the right hon. gentleman will not any longer

continue the policy which he says he has followed for the last eight years. If this which I have just read is to be the result of the impression as to his policy made on the minds of statesmen in other parts of the empire, then the sooner the right hon. gentleman changes his policy the better. In 1909, another conference was held, but I shall say nothing about that further than to mention that in this conference the delegates from the various parts of the empire found that the same difficulty existed which then existed in 1902. The papers are not as voluminous concerning this conference, for instead of giving us a shorthand report of the conference of 1909 as in 1907 and 1902, only a summary is given, and one can quite understand that the statesmen at the head of the empire, knowing that countless millions of youths were growing up in different parts of the empire whose minds they wished to be filled with patriotic loyal sentiments as they grew up, prefered that no more literature of the stamp of the report of the 1907 conference should be put in the hands of these British youth3. But this does appear from the 1909 conference: that while all the other dominions were all willing to do something, and Australia was taking steps to furnish the unit that was desired by the British admiralty, there were two things agreed upon by the admiralty and insisted on again and again and again, viz.: if you are going to build a navy start with your Dreadnought and Indomitable, because they are the only' ships that by themselves are of any use, the others being to support them, and for a different purpose altogether-while the admiralty insisted on a Dreadnought or an Indomitable being the nucleus of a navy, and while they insisted on unity of command, and that the admiralty must have control, Canada refused both of the essentials that the admiralty requested. And so to-day we stand, with this Bill, in the humilating position of being compelled to admit that the admiralty has not asked us for one single thing along the lines of naval development which we have given them, and that as a matter of fact we have given them the very things they do not want. The right hon. gentleman will hardly claim it, I think, as a faithful honest following out of the policy he says he has pursued for the last eight years, and if it is, in view of what we have seen I would be inclined to think that the sooner we drop that policy and adopt a new one the better.

But, the right hon. gentleman seemed to enthuse his supporters with the recollection that the spirits of Robert Baldwin and Louis Lafontaine were looking down upon them. And who were Robert Baldwin and Louis Lafontaine? They were, I should have thought about the last men in this

world or the world beyond that the right hon. gentleman would refer to. The memory of these two statesmen, in the opinion of gentlemen on this side of the House, is held in Teverence, and I cannot do better than to quote the opinion of Robert Baldwin given by Sir John Ac. Macdonald who certainly was head of the Conservative party in his day. and who, when Robert Baldwin retired from public life-and there could be no question that he was trying.to get rid of an opponent.-offered him the chief justiceship of the Court of Common Pleas in the province of Ontario, and spoke of him as ' that loyal honest-minded soul Robert Baldwin, of whom I always love to speak '. That is the opinion held of Robert Baldwin by Sir John A. Macdonald, and Louis Lafontaine was a worthy colleague of Robert Baldwin. And what became of them? They were the leaders of the Reform party of that day, and the grandfather of the hon. gentleman who fills the position of Minister of Labour, having returned from a temporary, but I believe necessary sojourn in the adjoining republic, and being elected to the legislature, one of his first- acts was to bring in a measure to abolish the Court of Chancery, which had been founded by Robert Baldwin, and, which was the apple of his eye. That resolution was supported by twenty-seven out of thirty votes from Upper Canada, with the result that Robert Baldwin seeing his own friends would not support him resigned his office before the next election, and was followed by Lafontaine, and when at the next election Baldwin went back to the very constituency of North York, which is apparently a preserve of the government, because the present Minister of Justice, and the late Postmaster General both sat for it, Robert Baldwin was ignominously defeated by the electors of North York, and a man named Wartman, an ignorant Grit who could hardly sign his own name was elected. The right hon. gentleman has reason to be proud of Baldwin and Lafontaine, because two nobler men than they never lived in this Dominion; but, Sir, it comes with ill grace from the head of the party which drove Baldwin and Lafontaine from public life to appeal to his supporters to endorse such a measure as this on the ground that it is an honest carrying out of the policy of Baldwin and Lafontaine.

Then the right hon. gentleman spoke on the subject of autonomy. I do not intend to occupy much time on that subject, because it has been pretty well threshed out by other speakers. But there is one view of the subject which, as far as I am aware, lias not yet been presented, and it is this. The right hon. gentleman asked what is the spirit that inspires the Liberal party? He even referred to the rebellion of 1837, and asked what was it that quelled it? He ' Mr. NORTIIRU P.

said it was the spirit of autonomy. Practically everything good that has ever come to this country ever since has come by means of autonomy. It did not seem to enter his mind that if autonomy is such a vast good to this country, there ought to be a little gratitude to the source from which it came. Did the right hon. gentleman consider who gave us autonomy? We did not win it for ourselves. We did not discover this country and capture it. We merely came and enjoyed what others had worked for and won; and all this boasted autonomy comes from the head of the empire. If the boon of autonomy is so great, surely there ought to be a little gratitude on the part of the recipients of so great a boon to the source from which it came.

At this time the question is not a question of fear of war, for war is actually raging between Great Britain and Germany. When we find by to-day's telegrams that the imperial expenditure for the navy this year will be $203,000,000, an increase of $27,000,000 over last year, and that 2,000 more men will be added to the navy. When we find the Germans with feverish haste building warships; it is idle to talk about an emergency or a crisis or a war that, is coming. The war is on at the present time. I do not know that the case can be put in better words than these:

War is deprecated. But as a matter of fact war is in progress. The conflict in shipbuilding is war. If the mother country were engaged in a deadly conflict, Canadians could not get across the ocean fast enough to the aid of the motherland. But we must remember that our aid is needed now just as much as if a physical instead of a ship-building war were on. It is Canada's duty from every point of view, from our affection for the land of our fathers, and for our own self-interest, to take prompt and practical action.

And that language, which I am sure will receive the approval of every hon. member of this House, is from the Toronto ' Globe,' of the 24th of March, 1909. It is just as well that we should consider the exact situation at the present time. I for one have the most profound respect for the ruler of Germany. I regard him as one of the ablest statesmen in the world to-day, and I do not believe that a truer patriot lives than the Kaiser. I respect him for his love of his country, and his determination to do all he can for it. But Germany is circumscribed on every hand. When we realize that her population is increasing by about a million a year, while the greater part of the world is to-day in the occupation of other nations, that Great Britain controls most of the desirable parts of the world, that the United States by its Monroe doctrine excludes Germany from the whole of South America, you can depend upon it that sooner or later Germany, the ' greatest land power in the world-and we

cannot blame her for it-must have overseas outlet for her surplus population, and markets for her enlarging trade, and that means that she must have a navy. If at the time of ths Boer war the German navy had been as great as Britain's, does any one suppose that the result of that war would have been what it was? But she had not the control of the sea, and could not send an army to South Africa. Germany knows that as a matter of self-preservation she must have so strong a navy that no other navy in the world can control it; and everybody knows that little Britain owes her ascendency to her supremacy on the seas, and that the day she loses that supremacy she becomes a second-class power, and that day Canada will be obliged to leave her, whether she wishes it or not, for either independence or annexation to the United States. When we find that Great Britain is straining every nerve in the present existing war, and that Germany is straining every nerve in the present existing war, when we know that if a conflict began to-morrow, and we had not done something already to assist the empire, we could do nothing; when we know that the vessels that we propose to build would be useless at such a time, should not every Canadian recognize that, whether we believe this or that to be the wiser policy, the authorities in the old land who are on the spot are surely better judges than we? And would it not be better, even if we erred, for us to do what at all times to come would be a source of pride, and satisfaction to us, even if the money were wasted, than to do something now that under any circumstances can be of no possible benefit either to ourselves or to the motherland? The right hon. gentleman has spoken of the proper conception of the empire. He described it in his speech as ' vessels from all parts of the empire rushing on a common foe.' That description appeals to every one; but when you descend from poetry to prose, from theory to fact, what is the meaning of this phrase? What is the meaning of a Canadian navy rushing on a common foe? Your torpedo boats cannot leave the coasts which they are intended to defend, your unarmoured cruisers could not fight, because no civilized country fights with them. They can only be used either as scouts for Dreadnoughts, and you have no Dreadnoughts, or,to pTey on the undefended merchantmen of the enemy. Is it not a proud reflection that we are building a navy that cannot be called on to fight, and that must either run to cover or go abroad as pirates, cruise up and down the trade routes, and when they find some unprotected merchantman of the enemy, seize it and bring it in as a prize? Surely Canada is not so needy that she has to build her railways and her canals

with money obtained in any such way. The right hon. gentleman made one reference that amused me at the time, although it had nothing to do with the question before the House.

The right hon. gentleman went back to the days of Peter the Hermit to find an illustration of the disorganization in which he says His Majesty's loyal opposition exists in this country to-day. He depicted the followers of Peter the Hermit as having been in a disorganized state, and consequently mowed down by the enemy. But who were the followers of Peter the Hermit? Every one who has read history knows that they were honest, sincere men, who set out with the most laudable object of wresting the sacred sepulchre from the hands of the infidels. They were honest, sincere men, animated by a most praiseworthy motive, but they were overthrown and defeated because they came in contact with organized troops of bandits who plundered and slaughtered them. That is the historical fact, and it is not my simile but that of the right hon. gentleman, when he compared his followers to those organized bandits.

The right hon. gentleman said that he was neither an imperialist nor an anti-imperialist, but a Canadian first and last and all the time; and in that sentiment, I am entirely in accord with my right hon. friend. I am a Canadian, too, first and last and all the time; but I cannot forget the fact that Canada is a part of the British empire, so that it is impossible for me to be a Canadian without being a British subject. Therefore, when I say that I am a Canadian, I declare at the same time that I am a British subject; and one of the greatest grounds of my pride in being a Canadian is that at the same time I am a subject of Britain. The right hon. gentleman says he is not an imperialist nor is he an anti-imperialist. But is it possible for any Canadian to be neither the one nor the other? If you are a Canadian, you must surely wish that Canada should either continue to be a part of the British empire or not. If you wish to continue a part of the empire and to contribute to its growth and success, you are an imperialist; but if you do not wish that empire to grow and prosper, and if you do not wish to continue a part of it, you are an anti-imperialist. You must be either the one or the other, and no amount of high flown sentiment will alter that fact. I am not finding fault with any man who believes that the destiny of this country is annexation or independence, or anything else; but I do say that no man can be a Canadian and not be an imperialist or an anti-imperialist. He must wish either to remain in the empire or to be out of it. It is just as well to remember that when Great Britain lost her American colonies, the whole difficulty arose over the

question of defence. History is philosophy teaching by experience; and although some hon. gentlemen in this House have spoken about matters of history and British diplomacy from the standpoints of books published a number of years ago, it must be remembered that history has been entirely re-written within the last ten or fifteen years, and to-day we have the strongest proofs that at the time of the American revolution nine-tenths of the wrongs were committed by the revolting colonies. It is proved that although the motherland was not always wise, careful and prudent, she was a long-suffering, patient mother after all. And on the other hand, American historians, in their later books, admit that the difficulties with the American colonies took their rise when Britain became the owner of Canada. When Canada was owned by France, the American colonies were afraid of the French power and aggression, but the day that Canada became a part of Britain they at once prepared to secure their own independence. So that it was eventually to the removal of this dread of French aggression that the American revolt was due.

A similar misconception has heretofore existed with regard to diplomatic questions, and any hon. member who will read the latest works on the subject will find, as the Minister of Justice (Mr. Aylesworth) said in Toronto a week or ten days ago, that British diplomacy has been, if not invariably, on the whole most successful. On the whole, British diplomacy has been exercised with wisdom and success for the benefit of Canada. Any one who will take the trouble to study history cannot- fail to recognize that Canada would have been thousands of miles from the Pacific ocean to-day had it not been for the might of Great Britain and the dread of its war power. ,

Without occupying the time of the House longer, I would like to say that it seems to me that when a Bill such as this comes before us, and there is doubt as to its constitutionality, it would be wise to defer action until the opinion of the highest court in the land is taken. Can there be any doubt that before many years this difficulty between Great Britain and Germany must be settled. Germany must conquer Britain or Britain must conquer Germany, or a truce must be had between the two. No one wants to go on grinding the people indefinitely by taxation for war purposes. When the proper time comes we can decide intelligently what is best to do in the interests both of Canada and the empire. But of all times this is the most inopportune, when the plans of war vessels are changing more rapidly and more frequently than ever before. We had better wait a few years until a definite Mr. NORTHRUP.

policy has been arrived at in these matters, and we will be in a position to take a course which will have some character of permanency. We could do our duty much more effectively both to this country and to the motherland if, our government would be willing to consult the imperial authorities and see if some plan cannot be discovered which would meet the views and exigencies of both countries. We are told that it would not be wise for us to send our money to the old country to be spent there on a navy over which we would have no control. I sympathizes deep-, ly with that view, but it seems to me that the best course would be for this government to meet the imperial authorities who are anxious for the co-operation of the colonies-for they well know that the future of Britain depends on the colonies- and try to agree on some plan. I am not prepared to suggest any plan, but if the statesmen whose duty it is to overcome difficulties-the statesmen of the Australian colonies, and Canada, and the British Isles, and wherever the Union Jack floats -if they would sit down at a common board, determined to devise some scheme by which all parts of the empire would share in the burden, and not impose the whole burden on the motherland, I am satisfied that a practical result would follow.

I say, Sir, that I have that respect for the statesmen of this country, and for the statesmen of the colonies in general, and of the motherland, to believe that such a scheme could soon be worked out. And I venture to say that if such a scheme could be worked out even now with this emergency before us, an object lesson would be given to the world that the nation that strikes Britain must reckon with the forces of the greatest empire the world has ever seen. It will be worth while to have it known that, not only the men and treasures of the British islands, but the men and treasures of this Canada, which is one of the most richly endowed countries on the face of the earth, and the men and treasures of the other parts of the empire, are also at the service of the empire-not the British empire in the narrow sense, but the empire of all of us, an empire in which all are joint partners, and in whose affairs all take part-to maintain the security that is essential to progress. I have confidence in the right hon. Prime Minister that, sitting at the board with other representatives of the empire, such a scheme could be worked out before they rose.

Mr. Speaker, in amendment to the motion that the Bill be now read the second time, I move:

That the word ' now ' he struck out, and the words be added at the end of the motion,

' this day six months.1

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CON

William D. Staples

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. W. D. STAPLES (Macdonald).

had mountains of information. The right [DOT]hon. gentleman states that it will cost $11,000,000 for this navy, with 331 peri cent added if it is constructed in Canada, but the people of this country have learned to place very little faith in estimates which he may give. The right hon. gentleman told this House in 1903 that the Transcontinental railway would not cost us more than $13,000,000, although his Minister of Finance stated that it would cost $28,000,000, and in order that he might mislead the people of Canada he prepared campaign literature stating that it would only take $13,000,000 of the peoples' money to construct that railway. This pamphlet which I have in my hand was circulated in every home throughout the Dominion, "my own home amongst others, and if you will look at page ten you will find $13,000,000 given as the right hon. gentleman's estimates of the cost of this National Transcontinental railway. But, Sir, we find to-day that this railway will cost $250,000,000, and if we take the right lion, gentleman's guess that-the navy will cost $11,000,000 and work it out on the same basis as his estimate for the Transcontinental railway, then the people of Canada may expect that the navy will cost about $220,000,000, exclusive of maintenance. And, as to the time it will take to build the navy, we know that it will take ten years to build the Transcontinental instead of the five years which the Prime Minister said it would take, and therefore on the same basis it will take 12 years to construct the navy. And, Sir, before that navy is constructed it will be obsolete, utterly worthless as an instrument of offence or defence; and fit only for consignment to the scrap heap. Then, the right hon. gentleman told the people of Toronto recently that it was easy to criticise a government but it was hard to construct, and that although the Tories criticised his government it was a government of construction. Well, I need not go into the history of the two political parties in this country, but I may say there is just about as much sense in that statement1 as there is in the other celebrated statement of the Prime Minister who told us the other day that when England is at war Canada will be at war, but it does not follow that when England is at war Canada is at war. Let me point out briefly the record of this government so far as constructive ability is concerned. They undertook the construction of a great Transcontinental railway, and we all know what scandals have surrounded that; they undertook the construction of the Quebec bridge and after they expended over $6,000,000 of the people's money on it it fell into the St. Lawrence. What great con-Mr. STAPLES.

structors they are? They have constructed other things.

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CON

William D. Staples

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STAPLES.

Yes, they constructed the Laurier tower and a gentle zephyr from the south blew the whole thing away, and it tumbled down. What a great constructive government this is? Now, Sir,, this government has decided to go its own way irrespective of the other colonies of the empire, and to take its own time to work out a scheme of naval defence. They have decided to construct two navies, one-on the Atlantic and one on the Pacific, and it will be no more possible for those; navies to unite than it was for the Russian navy to unite before the days of their humiliation when they had one fleet on the Baltic and another on the Pacific. At all events, this government has decided to construct two navies, and I have no doubt they will adopt the suggestion of the Toronto 'Globe' and call the Pacific coast navy the 'HorneJ,' and the Atlantic coast navy the 'Wasp'. And having their navies constructed let us consider for a moment what their fighting power will be. I question very much if the 'Wasp' would be capable of capturing Captain Bernier on the Arctic. I am inclined to think that if Captain Bernier had his fleet well armed and manned with Esquimaux males and .females that the Minister of War with his fleet would not be able to capture them. Does any one suppose that the sting of the 'Wasp' would be sufficient to penetrate the armour of Captain Bernier's ship? The fact is that this navy will be an enormously costly affair and will be of no use to Canada or to the empire. Now,, Mr. Speaker, we have heard a good deal about loyalty in this debate, and while it has been hinted that some of the leaders of the government are disloyal, the only way I can judge of that is by their utterances, and having read the speeches of the Prime Minister and some of his supporters I certainly think there is a note of disloyalty in them. The hon. member for Frontenac (Mr. Edwards) stated that the mass of the people of the province of Quebec are not disloyal, but hon. gentlemen on the other side have endeavoured to misconstrue his words and they have alleged, wrongfully I submit, that the hon. member (Mr. Edwards) has stated that the people of Quebec were disloyal.

I have never had the pleasure or honour of living in the province of Quebec,, but I have met many of the people of that province, and I have yet to find from one of them one disloyal utterance, outside of the expressions of the leaders who sit on the other side of the House. In the constituency, which I have the honour of representing there are many good French

Canadians, who are good and loyal citizens. There are also French men and women who have come direct from France, and they have made good and loyal citizens of that western country. Let me give you an instance of the loyalty of these people. A couple of years ago they were holding a celebration in a town, I think on the 14th day of June, and at that celebration the French flag was flown. I had no objection to that, because at the same time the Union Jack was flying, and in its proper place. One of the young Frenchmen who had not yet learned what the Union Jack meant, who had not learned that it stood for liberty of language, and liberty of conscience undertook to haul it down. What was the re' suit? No sooner had he laid hands on it than the presiding priest of the parish took it from him, put it in its proper place again and challenged him or any other person to lay hands upon it again. I have no doubt that the right hon. gentleman, when it becomes necessary for him again to appeal to the people of this country, will, as he always does, in opening his campaign, go down to the province of Quebec. He loves to go there and speak to his own people. I do not find fault with him for that, even if he goes so far as to remind them that the same blood that flows in their veins runs in his. Perhaps he will appeal to them in similar language to what he did when he opened the last campaign, when he told them that he was anxious to be returned to power in order that he might have a chance to complete his great work, when he would be content to say with the prophet of old : 'Lord, now let thy servant depart in peace'. That was an appeal that might melt any heart of stone. But when the time comes-and I hope it may be long distant-when the right hon. gentleman will be called from this wicked world to soar aloft and enjoy that peace which passes all understanding, but I fear that when he climbs the golden stairs and knocks on the door of St. Peter, there will be a little detention. I fear that when the great book is opened, which contains a record of the sins of omission and the sins of commission of all men. there will be some pointed questions put to the right hon. gentleman. He will no doubt be told that he was the Prime Minister of Canada who told the people of Canada that he would build them a Transcontinental railway for $13,000,000, whereas it cost them $250,000,000. He will be told that he was the Prime Minister of Canada who promised the people that if he were elected to power in 1896, he would wipe off the statute boobs the protective tariff which was bleeding the people white. He will be asked, are you the late Prime Minister 1631

of Canada who undertook to construct s, great public utility, which, after $6,000.000 of the people's money was put into it, fell with a crash to the bottom of the St. Lawrence, taking with it not only ~the people's money, but some 128 souls. I fear he will be also asked the question: Are you the Prime Minister of Canada who undertook to put the capstone on the. great works you were so anxious to finish, in the shape of an independent and separate navy which would probably be the means of breaking up the greatest empire of the world, which has done more to extend civilization and Christianity than any other empire that ever existed? He may also be asked: Are you the Prime Minister of Canada who thought of changing the design of the flag that would float over that fleet-the flag that has given liberty to all parts of the world? But, Mr. Speaker, is it not too late. I say to the Prime Minister that there is yet time for absolution, there is yet time for repentance. Let him begin now by taking 'this iniquitous and dangerous Bill and tearing it asunder. Let him not be contented with giving it a six months' hoist, but let him hoist it to the four winds of the earth. I have heard in this debate that there is some doubt as to which flag shall float over the navy which this government intends to construct, I for one, a Canadian bom, and a son of Canadian-born parents, will stand for the Union Jack-no other flag will do. The right hen. gentleman may have in his mind a flag of more modern design; he may have in his mind a flag with stars and bars, [DOT] which as beautiful maybe; but the flag that has waved a thousand years is good enough for me. These are not my words, Mr. Speaker, but they express my sentiments, and they are good enough for toe. .

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE NAVAL SERVICE OF CANADA.
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IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. W. F. MACLEAN (South York).

Mr. Speaker, I should have spoken earlier in this debate; but as I am only now recov- [DOT] ering from a somewhat prolonged cold, I have had to defer what I had to say. Moreover, -what I have to say may not be acceptable to either side of this House.

I cannot approve of the amendment which has just been submitted to the House for giving the Bill the six months' hoist, nor could I have voted for the amendments that were voted on yesterday proposing to send this question to the people. 1 believe absolutely in the responsibility of parliament, and it is up to this parliament and to the government to make the fullest and amplest provision for the defence of the country. The question of the safety of the nation or of the empire is of the first, importance, and cannot in any sense be removed from parliament and

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sent to the people. The men who made the parliament of England as we know it, men like Pitt, Fox, Canning, were seized of this principle, that the responsibility for the defence of the country and the empire rested on parliament and could not be taken from parliament and sent to any other quarter. I believe in such a thing as a referendum on a constitutional issue, but never yet in British history has the proposition been made that parliament should abandon the defence of the country to the opinion of the people. Holding this view, I must say that parliament is seized of this question, and, under the circumstances, must act. And, for the same reason, I cannot vote for the amendment which has just been submitted. The responsibility is on this parliament to deal with the defence of the country now-not at a future time.

I believe that the foundation of national greatness, the permanence of any nation and the influence its people may have upon the history of the world, absolutely depend, and have through the ages depended upon sea power. Pericles and Themistocles, who -were the two first and greatest statesmen of Athens, more than four hundred vears before Christ, saw this solution of the problem of national greatness. When that little city of Athens was emerging into influence throughout the then world, and its spirit of democracy spreading, these great men realized that nations became great as they became strong in regard to sea power. They had only small ships, the little triremes of those days, but these statesmen saw that sea power was the basis of national greatness. Themistocles said: 'Give me a navy, and I can be in any place to-morrow, but with an army I can only be in one place '. And so we find it in the course of history. This was true of the Italian cities of the middle ages, it was true of the Dutch republic, it was true of Great Britain, and. coming down to our own day, the rise of Germany is abso .lutely based on the possession and development of sea power. The nation that neglects the development of sea power makes a great mistake and soon must crumble and decay. If Canada is ever to become a community of first class importance, if she is to hold her own on this North American continent, she must develop sea power And we are especially fitted for that development. Not for a moment do I, as a Canadian, propose that we should give up our right to develop our own sea power, or ask, or subsidize some one else to defend us, or to supply for our benefit power at sea. This we must do for ourselves. We have the opportunity before us to dominate this great North American continent, but, if we hope to do it, it must be because -we develop our sea power. We occupy what I call the intercontinental way 'Mr. W. F. MACLEAN

between Europe and Asia. The great track of commerce to-day is across the Atlantic, across America, and across the Pacific, and the maintenance of sea power on both oceans is essential. The possession of sea power is a national necessity to the people of the United States, and they are now spending millions upon it. But the United States is mainly concerned in the ipainten-ance of sea power on the Pacific as against Japan. We are all beginning to see now, especially as the construction of the Panama canal goes on, and a great new route of trade is about to open, that sea power is an essential thing to any nation. I have especially contended that the Canadian people, who have aspirations as high and far-reaching as any other people, will never realize these aspirations unless they develop and maintain power on the sea. We come of peoples who have been identified with sea power. I have heard that a good deal of objection has been raised in the province of Quebec to the proposal to build a navy. But my observation leads me to believe that, if the people of Quebec are strong in certain directions, it is because they are descendants of those Breton fishermen and sailors who first discovered Canada, and are prepared to-day to maintain their integrity as Canadians on this continent by exercising that sea power that they inherited from their fathers. Not only is sea power, as I said, an essential, but it is growing and more and more a necessity in connection with a nation. As I pointed out, that which makes Germany a menace to the English sneaking empire is that Germany has at last recognized the importance of sea power and intends to have it. And I do not see how Germany can be denied the exercise of the greatest power in this respect that she can attain. She knows that she cannot expand otherwise, and following the example of other great nations, especially the example of England, she is developing sea power, until to-day she is the greatest force in the world. And she has developed her sea power within a dozen years. Germany amounted to nothing as a naval power twelve years ago, but in twelve short years she has become a great sea power, and in three years more she expects to be equal to England in this respect, and then to assert her right to expansion. I pointed out how rapidly Japan had come to the front because she had developed sea power. Today she has practically told the people of America, and especially the people of the United States-and is ready to tell the countries of Europe: If you, especially the people of America, intend to assert the principle that America is a white man's country, then you must recognize the supremacy of the yellow man, and especially of the Japanese, in Asia, and this we are able to assert because we made up a navy,

we have trained our sailors, we have built up our country, and we rely upon sea power before anything else.

Now, if this is the teaching of history, how does it affect us? Simply in this way: If we wish to succeed in America, if we wish to be in the empire, and to assist in holding that great fabric together for what it can do for humanity, we must join with England in maintaining sea-power

and sea-power of the highest kind, and sea-power at home. I believe that is the verdict and determination of the Canadian people. Give them an intelligent leadership, and they will respond and assert the doctrine of sea-power, and will be prepared to make any sacrifice to maintain it in connection with the empire. Not only do I believe in sea-power in connection with the empire, but I believe that an essential part in the development of sea-power consists in building ships in your own country; and I take the credit of having been one of the very first in this House to assert the idea that it was time Canada should begin to build her own ships. I went so far as to say that I believed in bounties on shipbuilding. We want to build ships for our great trade on the Atlantic, and the Pacific. If we can build great transcontinental railways, we can provide great fleets to operate in connection with them on both seas, and what we require is to build those ships in our own country, and thus develop our sea-power. But we must make a start, we require dockyards, and other adjuncts to that business, and it is because the proposition before the House is a move in this direction that I cannot support the motion to give it a six months' hoist or to say that it is a question which should be submitted to the people. It is high time that we should start a shipbuilding industry, and in some way work it out. If you want to become a sea-power, you must not only find a way to build your own ships, and provide your own docks, but you must also train your own people to become seamen; and thank God, we have the best supply of material to man a fleet that can be found any where on the globe. And if we can build the ships-and I lay the responsibility on the government-we can begin to train our sailors to man them. We can, and we could furnish seamen to man a portion of the British fleet. As Canadians it is out duty not to talk so much about constitutional issues, whatever they may be, and not to evade our responsibility as a parliament, but to begin to train and develop our seafaring population so that, if need should arise, we could turn over to England at least 5,000 men competent to assist in manning the British fleet, and if necessary, furnish 10,000 to 20,000 men m the hour of danger. Let us take our share of responsibility; let us do our part in developing our possibilities as a sea-power.

I want to refer for a moment to the real situation in England. I believe that peril does more or less exist to-day, and I believe that the best remedy to the present situation in England is reflected in an article in the London ' Saturday Review ' of three or four weeks ago. The German admiral, who has been attending the German Navy League, delivered an address before one of the meetings of that league, and in that address he tried to draw the sting out of what was a legitimate inference to be drawn from one of the speaker's claim. He claimed that-here is what the ' Spectator ' says:

Grand Admiral Von Roster ended Jhis speech by declaring that the Germans did not think of having a navy equal in size to the English. IV hat they wanted was a force sufficient to protect them against all conceivable attacks. Their programme was to carry out the navy law in all its parts.

The true significance of this remark is very pertinently set forth by the correspondent of the ' Times.' He points out that the president of the navy league and his colleagues have repeatedly explained that this means a great deal more than appears in the ordinary words of the German naval programme. If the minimizing speech of the president of the navy league is construed without sentiment, it appears to us that what the navy league in reality means by a navy strong enough to protect Germany from all attacks is a navy challenging our command of the sea, and if necessary of winning it from us in a naval conflict.

That is what Germany is after to-day. She is bent on the creation and development of a navy able to challenge and wrest from Britain the supremacy of the sea. That is the German policy, but that, they are not able yet to accomplish, as the ' Spectator ' points out. The ' Spectator ' further points out that if England were to adopt what is called the Bismarekian policy, if she were to take advantage of Germany's present weakness, and not wait until she has, in three or four years, perfected her navy, she would strike at once. The ' Spectator ' says that is what the Germans would do in a similar case. I am going to read two more paragraphs which really give the situation:

In raising the question which, as we have said, haunts a certain number of German minds, i.e., that we may do the so-called common sense thing and not wait for German naval preparations to be complete-we admit that we are touching delicate, nay, dangerous ground. We should, therefore, like to take this opportunity of stating once more that we are certain that the British people would never be induced to adopt what we may call the Bismarekian plan of insisting that the struggle for sea-power shall take place while the Germans are notoriously so much weaker than we are. But even if we thought it would be possible to induce the British public, which we are sure it is not, to change their minds in this respect, and to attack the Ger-

mans before their navy is complete, we should refuse absolutely to advocate that course. The best proof we can give of the sincerity of dur words is the fact that we, and what is far more important, all other responsible advocates of a supreme navy in this country are

ledged to the alternative policy-the policy of so greatly increasing our own armaments that Germany will not be able to catch us up.

What is the policy which Englishmen are trying to carry out, and which I want to see our country adopt? This is the policy which England has in view:

The policy of so greatly increasing our own armaments that Germany will not be able to catch us up, and that our present relative supremacy will be maintained. If that is [DOT]done there can never be any valid reason for precipitating a war.

Here is something for the peace at any price men to consider:

If, however, we advocate a Bismarckian policy for Britain, it would not be necessary to ask for more Dreadnoughts to be laid down. We should have a far shorter and easier, and apparently cheaper, way of dealing with the German navy. It is because we are one and all determined to have nothing to do with a Bismarckian policy that we insist that our shipbuilding programme must be greatly enlarged. We want to deal with the German competition, not by the short way, the war way, the way of attacking her while she is relatively weak, hut by the longer way and *he peaceful way of so greatly increasing our i.wn armaments that she will have to abandon the struggle and a conflict will be avoided.

To summarize the matter again, and it cannot be summarized too often, there are two ways of securing that command of the sea which all Britons are agreed must be secured to us. One is by destroying the German fleet before it has attained dimensions sufficiently great to put our sea-power in jeopardy. The other way, and the way all sane British imperialists and defenders of our sea-power advocate, is a scheme of naval construction so large as to neutralize, and more than neutralize, German competition, and to maintain our present relative position of supremacy. All friends of peace and of the maintenance of existing relations with Germany should rally, then, to the cause of a supreme navy, and should make it clear that it is in this way, and in this way only, that we intend to deal with and defeat German rivalry. The policy of disarmament by agreement, as Admiral Von Koester shows, is purely chimerical.

That is the policy Englishmen are working out to-day, to keep ahead of Germany and maintain and increase their sea power. When Germany comes to see that this i3 the determination of England, and when she comes to see that Canada, and the other dominions of the empire, are one with her in maintaining that position, and in keeping ahead, Germany will finally have to abandon her design of competing with Great Britain for naval supremacy ; and nothing will have such an effect on the German nation as a clear cut declara-Mr. W. F. MACLEAN

tion from the Canadian people, and from the Australian people, that they are with the empire, and for the maintenance oE the empire, and that in Canada at least we believe in sea-power, that we intend to develop sea-power, and in that way to strengthen the empire, and make German competition for supremacy hopeless. In that way only I believe will British supremacy be maintained and war averted. It is because I believe in Canada being able to assist in the defence of the empire by developing her sea-power, that I cannot afford to take the position that we ought to do nothing. We ought to do everything, and my only contention is that we are not doing enough. I would like to see a Canadian Dreadnought, or two Canadian Dreadnoughts on our coasts. But, if that is not to be, then let us make a start tomorrow, or next day, on something. But I do wish to see a start made. I wish to see a declaration going out to the world that the Canadian parliament assumes to the full its responsibility for the defence of the empire, and, without consulting the people by a plebiscite, that we in this House intend to lead our people in the maintenance of British supremacy. Therefore my regret that the Bill is so weak. I say that we are not spending enough money, that we are not building Dreadnoughts. But we. are asserting that Canada is willing and ready to make sacrifices. As has been stated in the House here to-day, we see that the British war budget now amounts to over $200,000,000, an enormous increase on only the last year. That is a heavy expense; but people who wish to maintain their position have got to spend their money, and we might as well spend our money in strengthening the naval force of our country, in making sailors of our Canadian hoys, in having a naval college, in training seamen for the British navy.

Now, a word or two in connection with this German scare. After hearing what the hon. member for East Hastings (Mr. Northrup) said this afternoon, I do not see how Great Britain can continue to restrain Germany in her desire to expand. A way must be found in Europe to allow the German people to expand without coming into conflict with other nations. I hope that way will be found, and if it is found the situation will be eased considerably. But in the meantime it is our duty to develop some kind of a navy in this country to develop Canadian sea-power, to school our sailors so that they may be of use, almost immediately, to the British navy, to organize a navy of our own, to have a shipbuilding establishment of our own, to have a naval college of our own. Above all, let us say that we not only believe in the empire, but we are determined to remain associated with the empire, and

to that end, that we are determined to develop sea-power of our own on this continent, that we are determined to consecrate all our energies to maintain British supremacy, to keep Britain ahead of every competitor, so that she may remain what she i3 to-day, the guardian and the protecting influence of civilization in its onward march throughout the world.

At six o'clock House took recess.

After Recess.

House resumed at eight o'clock.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE NAVAL SERVICE OF CANADA.
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CON

Thomas George Wallace

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. T. G. WALLACE (Centre York).

Mr. Speaker, while this question of such great importance to the Dominion of Canada is under discussion I wish to take this opportunity of voicing my sentiments on behalf of the county which I represent. I was sent here as the representative of the people of Centre York, probably one of the most important counties in Canada, to voice their sentiments on every question that comes before parliament. During the progress of the debate I have listened attentively to nearly every hon. member on both sides of the House who has spoken upon the naval question. I agree to a certain extent with the sentiments expressed by members on both sides of the House. I do not wish to make a claim that I represent the only loyal constituency in Canada, because I certainly do not, but I represent a constituency which, I think, is as loyal, and patriotic, and as devoted to the British empire as any other portion of this Dominion. Elected on these principles, and as I had not the opportunity of expressing my views on the amendment to the motion for the second reading of the Navy Bill brought down by the right hon. Prime Minister (Sir Wilfrid Laurier), I desire to avail myself of the present opportunity of placing my views upon this question before the House. I listened to the speech of the hon. member for South York (Mr. W. F. Maclean) this afternoon, and I regret to say that I think it is my duty to differ from him on this question. On a good many questions I entirely agree with him, but, as I understand his sentiments, he would vote against the six months' hoist proposed by my hon. friend from East Hastings (Mr. Northrup), and I feel it is my duty, as a representative of one of the great agricultural constituencies of Canada, to dissent from the position which he has taken. I understood the hon. member for South York to say that he would vote against the amendment of my hon. friend the leader of the opposition (Mr. R. L. Borden). In voting for that amendment I feel that I represent the views of my constituents. While I have no mandate from the people to express my views on the navy question, because at the time of my election there was no navy question before the people, I feel that when any question comes before parliament I should be prepared to take the full responsibility of such action as I consider the circumstances warrant. I believe that there is an emergency at the present time, and that Canada should endeavour to do something to safeguard the interests of the British empire. This will not be done by the creation of a Canadian navy. The Bill introduced by the Prime Minister is entitled an Act respecting the Naval Service of Canada. This force is divided, as the Prime Minister said, into the permanent corps, reserve force, and volunteer force. The Militia Act, in a general way, was followed except in this particular that the Militia Act provides that every man between eighteen and sixty years of age, is liable to military service, while under the Naval Bill, as I understand it, no person is liable to service on sea. It provides for entirely voluntary enrolment. The Bill, though a very important measure, is very meagre with respect to information. We got very little information from the Prime Minister as to what the government really intend to do on this question. He told us that the terms of engagement would be determined by the Governor in Council, and that commissions would be issued in the, name of His Majesty. The Bill declares that:

(a) ' Active service,' as applied to a person in the naval forces, means service or duty during an emergency;

(d) ' emergency ' means war, invasion or insurrection, real or apprehended.

That is one clause that I wish to direct the attention of the House to. Emergency means war, real or apprehended. I think that is right, but I remember very distinctly that in October, 1899, it was brought very forcibly to the knowledge of the government, during the South African crisis, that there was war real or apprehended. I remember distinctly the sentiment expressed at that time by the Prime Minister. I remember the Prime Minister, as quoted in the Toronto ' Globe,' saying : That the government had nothing to do with Britain's wars. The government did not intend to do anything in regard to the South African war, a very few days before the soldiers were enrolled in Canada. But the sentiment of the people at that time was entirely with Great Britain, as it is to-day, and it was in favour of Canada sending a contingent to South Africa. I did not wish to bring this matter before the House, but it was brought up by the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald). He quoted the opinion of a gentleman on the navy question who was in the first- contingent. In October, 1899, I had the honour of applying for a commission in the militia force

of Canada. I was one of the first men to apply for a commission in the Canadian contingent to South Africa. Unfortunately more men applied for commissions than could be taken with the force, and there was no room for me. I went to South Africa as a private for which I claim no credit, because,I only did what any loyal Canadian .would do. But, I take second place to no man in regard to my loyalty to the British empire, and in saying that I do not say that any other man is disloyal. I went there and tried to do my duty.

The hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald) quoted a very eminent authority as to why we should have a defence force for Canada, and while that authority may be very competent from a military point of view, I do not think it -would be held to be equally so from a naval standpoint. Canada can turn out probably as good soldiers as there are in the world, but I doubt very much if our sailors can equal' those of the British Isles who, I may say, are sailors by instinct. I have no mandate from my constituency to vote in favour of a Canadian navy, but I do think that I would be acting according to their wishes if on an occasion like this, when as I believe there is an emergency, I should support an effort by Canada to render some substantial assistance to the navy of Britain. I believe that if the government, at the present juncture, decided to send over two Dreadnoughts, which would be of some real assistance to the British empire, they would be supported by the people of every province in Canada. I would do anything in my power for the maintenance of British connection, but I honestly believe that the Bill introduced by the Prime Minister for the creation of a Canadian navy, as we have been told by the member for Nicolet and other hon. gentlemen on the other side, is solely with the object, not of helping the British navy, but of building up a fleet in Canada which would be useful to us whenever we should become independent. I believe that the creation of this navy is the first attempt since 1867 to sever the ties which bind us to the British empire, and in that view I am absolutely opposed to it. We all should be loyal to Canada, and any man who is loyal to Canada is loyal to the British empire. Believing as I do, and as gentlemen on the other side of the House have informed us, that this Canadian navy is a step in the direction of separation from the empire, I shall have nothing to do with it. I have no mandate from my people to vote for an enormous expenditure such as is here proposed. I have seen hon. gentlemen opposite vote for huge expenditures regardless of the returns which the country will receive from them, but I do not believe it to he the duty of a member of parliament to Mr. WALLACE.

take such a course unless with the en-dorsation of his constituents. We have seen members on the other side of the House vote for the Newmarket canal, a useless undertaking which will entail a large outlay; we have seen them vote for the National Transcontinental railway, the expenditure on which will be millions more than the government said it would be, and we see them now ready to vote away millions for a Canadian navy which will be absolutely of no use to Great Britain in time of trouble. I certainly know that my strong desire is to represent British sentiment, and feeling as I do on that score, I believe that the best way to help the British empire in the present crisis is for Canada to send an immediate gift in cash, or its equivalent in effective fighting ships. I believe, Sir, that the sentiment of this country demands that we shall assist Britain in her hour of need.. I believe that if this Canadian navy is not built now, the sentiment of the people of Canada will demand that something more beneficial to the empire shall be done, and I, therefore, have much pleasure in supporting the amendment of the hon. member for East Hastings.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE NAVAL SERVICE OF CANADA.
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March 10, 1910