April 16, 1914

LIB

Emmanuel Berchmans Devlin

Liberal

Mr. DEVLIN:

You won Chateauguayyou won it with whisky and money. I know something about Chateauguay. I was in Chateauguay during that election, and I believe that a tale will be told before the courts that will not redound to the honour or the dignity of the Conservative party. '

A more inapt, a more hopelessly helpless Government than that now in power I do not think this country has ever seen. In listening to the speeches delivered during the last few days, one would imagine that the Conservative party had absolutely nothing to their credit except the memory of the work of Sir John A. Macdonald upon the tariff and the building of the Canadian Pacific railway. My hon. friend (Mr. Edwards) dwelt, as did the hon. member for North Essex (Mr. Wilcox), at some length upon speeches delivered in this House in 1876. Do they believe that it would be an answer to the people of this country, who are clamouring against the high cost of living, to tell them what the men who in 1876 had seats in this House have said about protection, reciprocity, or free trade? The first one to speak about the policy of Sir John A. Macdonald was the hon. Minister of Finance. Here are his words:

Before taking these up in detail I desire to affirm the adherence of the Government to a fiscal policy of reasonable protection to Cana-

[Mr. Devlin 1

dian industries including of course the great basic industry of agriculture. That policy is the historic National Policy of Sir John Macdonald, inaugurated by him and continued by his successors in office down to the present time.

That was not the policy of Sir John A. Macdonald. The policy of the present Government is the policy of the manufacturers. To bear out my words, I want to allude to the speech delivered in Halifax by Mr. Robert S. Gourlay president of the Canadian Manufacturers' Association, on the 7th of September, 1913. Speaking upon the tariff, he used the following language:

Our tariff has undergone very little change since we met a year ago. A few inequalities were corrected by legislation in the regular way, hut their application was limited to specific lines with no resulting disturbance to business in general. This has been in keeping with the policy of tariff stability for which our association has so consistently stood and to that extent the policy of the Government as thus far manifested has our sympathy and support.

Mr. Gourlay goes on to say:

The woollen schedule is not what it should be; otherwise an industry that should be indigenous in an agricultural country like Canada would not have languished as it has. Neither is the iron and steel schedule satisfactory. As at present constituted, it is to some extent encouraging the establishment and expansion of what might he called secondary industries.

When I say that the policy of the present Government is the policy of the manufacturers, I am quoting exactly the words contained in the address of the president of the Canadian Manufacturers' Association. What was the policy of Sir John A. Macdonald? It was not by any means the policy of high protection. I will refer to the life of Sir John A. Macdonald by George R. Parkin, an authority which will not be disputed by hon. gentlemen opposite. At page 219 of The Makers of Canada, here is what I find:

Macdonald did not place himself at the head of the movement without careful study of the Canadian 1 situation, nor until he was convinced that the time was ripe for change. Some of his supporters were impatient with his deliberation. ' Sir John was timid unto death of protection, had to be bullied into it; led into it; committed to it by others. But when he thought it grown, he used it as a bridge to reach the jiower he liked to wield,' wrote in after years one of his parliamentary followers.

At page 223, I find the fallowing, citation from Sir John Macdonald's own words:

The question of the day is that of the protection of our farmers from the unfair competition of foreign producers, and the protection of our manufacturers. I am in favour of reciprocal free trade if it can be obtained, but so

long as the policy of the United States closes the markets to our products, we should have a policy of our own as well, and consult only out own interests. That subject wisely and vigorously dealt with, you will see confidence restored, the present depression dispelled, and the country prosperous and contented.

Then the author says:

While Macdonald and his followers were advocating what was at least a specious remedy for the industrial depression, the Liberals had no alternative to offer save the recommendation to the electorate to practise thrift and to wait for the swing of the economic pendulum.

Listening to the words of the hon. Minister of Finance, when he delivered his Budget Speech, you will note, Mr. Speaker, that he said, 'We will wait; better times are coming.' Sir John A. Macdonald, when he inaugurated his national policy, did so to meet the circumstances of the time. Again, the same historian tells us:

It should be noted that to the extreme protectionists of his party, Sir John A. Macdonald steadily refused to commit himself. In June, 1878, he endeavoured to assuage the anxiety of the Maritime provinces by a telegram stating that he had ' never proposed an increase, but a readjustment of the tariff,1 and his motion in the House of Commons earlier in the same year was drawn with characteristic skill.

You, Sir, no doubt were in the House at the time Sir John A. Macdonald presented his motion, and you remember that it ran as follows:

That this House is of opinion that the welfare of Canada requires the adoption of a national policy which, by a judicious readjustment of the tariff, will benefit and foster the agricultural, the mining, the manufacturing and other interests of the Dominion; . . .

and, moving (as it ought to do) in the direction of reciprocity of tariff with our neighbours, as far as the varied interests of Canada may demand, will greatly tend to procure for this country, eventually, a reciprocity of trade.

If we are to believe the very letter of his motion, Sir John Macdonald never would have inaugurated a national policy if it were not a lever to obtain reciprocity with the United States of America. Let me quote a last passage from the same historian :

More than one breeze of popular opinion was caught by this resolution. It appealed at once to the deep-seated Canadian suspicion of the United States, and to the strong desire of the farmers for the American market. It was, in fact a blow at the enemy with the ostensible object of forcing him into a more friendly attitude. Equally important was its appeal to the rising national sentiment of the Dominion of which the National Policy was the crystallization.

It is apparent from the very wording of the motion presented by Sir John Macdonald to the House that reciprocity with 166J

the United States was what he sought; and what is sought to-day by the Conservative party of Canada is nothing more or less than reciprocity with the manufacturers of Canada, for their votes, for their influence, because we have on the one hand the wording of the motion of Sir John A. Macdonald, and on the other the words of the president of the Canadian Manufacturers' Association.

I do not think I am putting it too harshly when I say that the masters of the Administration of the day are not the people of this country, not the farmers and labouring: classes, but the manufacturers. And the-moment the manufacturers say: ' Raise the duties,' this Government cannot resist, and: so the duties are raised regardless of the: farmers and labouring classes.

Now, having dealt with that part of ancient history so particularly referred to in this debate by hon. gentlemen opposite, I may be allowed to take up one other remark made by the hon. member for Fron-tenac. He said that since the Underwood Tariff had come into force the_tebd?rcy of prices of commodities in the United States had been to increase. I find that he is not borne out by Bradstreet's. Bradstreet's for the 7th of March makes this reference to commodity prices:

Commodity prices have moved irregularly this week, storm interruptipn to wires and mails dulling trade early. Cereals have made a slight downward swing, wheat leading with a decline of IS to 2 cents, largely on good reports from the new crop and bearish reports from Europe, growing out of the large movement from the southeast offsetting reports of shortage in Argentina- Corn is off 3, to 1 cent on slow cash demand, and oats sympa-' thized to the extent of J cent.

And the issue of Bradstreet's for the 14th of March dealing with the index number says:

Bradstreet's price index number as of March 1 shows a slight decline from that of February 1, and marks the third consecutive decline from the level set on December 1, 1913.

In the issue for the 21st of March, we find:

Tariff changes, large crops and springlike weather alike find reflection in the notable declines shown in prices of sugar, butter and eggs this week. Lowered tariff duties, effective March 1, are a partial explanation of the sharp break to the lowest price ever known for refined sugar, but neither this cause nor the sharp competition between refiners, developing since the tariff reduction, would have sufficed to have broken raw sugar to 3.01 cents per pound and refined to 3.77 cents per pound, prices respectively 1 cent and 2-5 cent below a year ago, were it not for the fact that the world's sugar crop the past year was 700,000 tons, or 4 per cent larger than ever before.

And practically a similar condition of affairs exists in the following week, according to the same authority. So, I fail to see where the hon. gentleman has found the prices of commodities increasing since the establishment of the Underwood tariff.

The Minister of Finance, in his Budget speech, announced the surplus of $36.500,000. Up to that moment he had had us all in an aeroplane. He had brought us over to the Balkan states where, he assured us, there was unrest. Then he brought us to Mexico and told us that there was anarchy. In this unrest in the Balkan states and anarchy in Mexico he found the cause for his being obliged to pay a higher rate of interest on money borrowed for the Dominion of Canada; and in these same conditions he found one of the causes for the trade depression in this country. But when he directed his aeroplane back to the city of Ottawa he found that the officials of his department had been busy with their bookkeeping, and, while he was away borrowing money, they had made ready to show him that he had a surplus of $36,500,000. I think all that will be pretty hard for the farmers of this country to understand. In fact, I think it will make a cold shiver run down their backs when they find that they had $36,500,000 in Ottawa and yet our gay young Minister of Finance was jaunting abroad looking for money at high interest. When he goes out before the electors and tries to explain that to them, I think I know some farmers who will be too canny to fully appreciate where this surplus comes in.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

William Smith

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. WILLIAM SMITH:

Just Grits; they are the only ones who will complain.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
Permalink
LIB

Emmanuel Berchmans Devlin

Liberal

Mr. DEVLIN:

I did not say they would complain; I said the canny farmers may not thoroughly appreciate just where this surplus comes in. However, they are not the only ones. Those of us who have been in this House for the last few years remember that the present Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Foster) used to speak upon the subject of surpluses. If there ever was a man to whom I loved to listen criticising a Budget speech, it was the Minister of Trade and Commerce. I often read his speeches, because there is so much in them. Here is what he said in the session of 1906-7, as reported at page 405 of ' Hansard ' of that year:

The Minister of Finance has a good time with himself almost every time he makes a budget speech about his surplus. Seventy-seven millions it is now, and every year he

adds a little more, and he says, Just look at my surplus. And everybody on the Government benches looks at it and admires it and applauds it and says it is good to look upon, even though they cannot have it. Well, it is new doctrine for the Liberal party.

Then he goes on, speaking of the Conservatives :

They had surpluses as well, but they were modest ones. When they went up to two millions, It was supposed that that was about the limit; and if by any means they happened to go up to four millions, care was taken pretty soon, by the reduction of the taxation or otherwise, that the surplus should not be inordinate. Why, it is the easiest thing in the world to make a surplus. The Minister of Finance and his colleagues can make it even larger than it is if they wish. All they have to do is to take out more taxation-to add on to the taxation million by million, and the more they take out of the people of Canada in taxation, the larger their surplus will become. But is it really economical? Is it really for the peace of mind of the minister himself and the Government? It is well to have a care that the country's finances will always come out on the right side, in order to keep its credit good; but it is uneconomical and dangerous for a government or a party to attempt to have a big surplus every year, because it means an extraction rf unwarranted sums from the pockets of the people and from the working capital of the country, and it is an invitation to extravagance which cannot be resisted by most governments, and which certainly has not been resisted by the Government at present in power.

You and I, Mr. Speaker, were in the House in 1906 and 1907, and we heard the ex-Minister of Finance make his speech in answer to the Budget. You remember those words; you remember as well as I do how he pounded his desk and appealed to the Liberal Government of the day not to have a surplus because it meant taking more taxes out of the pockets of the people. The hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce was in his seat during the last few days; he heard the Budget speech; he heard the surplus referred to. Any hon. gentleman on this side of the House who happened to look at the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce at that moment would have noticed that there was not a smile on his face, while other hon. gentlemen opposite were applauding the Minister of Finance for boasting a surplus of $36,500,000, the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce sat as dumb as an oyster. Yet the hon. member for Frontenac says that only the Grit organs will object to surpluses. Why, one of his leaders, the Minister of Trade and Commerce, does not believe in these surpluses. Let me tell the House that not all the Conservative organs of the country believe that the Minister of Finance has a surplus. On April 8, 1914, the Ottawa

Citizen, a good Conservative organ, said editorially:

To describe as a surplus the $36,500,000 which the taxpayers of Canada paid last year into the federal exchequer in excess of ordinary expenditure requirements, and to do so without indicating that he was speaking in a Pickwickian sense, was not the least achievement of the Finance Minister in the Budget speech.

Let us find out something about where this surplus came in. Referring to the financial returns of the Government, I find that in 1911 the net debt of Canada amounted to $340,042,052.03, upon which the Government was paying $12,535,850.81 interest. In 1913, according to the present minister, that debt had been reduced to the sum of $314,301,625.68, and the country was paying $12,605,882.48 interest. In other words, upon a debt $25,740,426 less, the country was paying $70,031.67 more interest. In 1896 the debt per head of population was $50.82; in 1908, 12 years afterwards, under Liberal Government, it was reduced to $40.50. In 1913-14, with a greater population, greater revenues and a smaller debt, according to hon. gentlemen opposite, it has been increased to about $46 or $48 per head. That is a system of bookkeeping with which I am not .at all familiar. The increase in the total expenditure during the past fiscal year has been nearly $40,000,000, or some $56 per head of population, and the decrease in revenue has been approximately $6,000,000. It is .still falling, but the apportionments for the present fiscal year indicate a still further increase in the expenditure over the $183,500,000 spent for the year just ended. During the past year the national debt has increased by nearly $20,000,000. Last year the increase in consolidated fund expenditure was $14,500,000. For the first two complete fiscal years of the present Administration the increase in the ordinary expenses of the Government totalled over $28,000,000, or nearly $4 for every man, woman and child in Canada. In the last complete fiscal year of the Laurier Government the total expenditure on consolidated fund account was $87,774,198. For the second complete fiscal year of the present Administration the total expenditure on consolidated fund account was $126,500,000. For the last complete fiscal year of the late Government the total expenditure on both consolidated fund and capital account was $122,861,250. For the second complete fiscal year of the present Government this amount was increased to $183,500,000. In the three

years the consolidated fund expenditure has been increased by nearly $39,000,000, while the total expenditure has been increased by $60,639,000-and the increased expenditure has all to come out of the pockets of the people of this country. With that statement before the House and before the country, how the minister can get up and say that he really has in the treasury of this country a surplus of $36,000,000 is, to say the least, marvellous. If I were to borrow the language of Shakespeare, Mr. Speaker, I think I would be inclined to use these words in connection with the attitude of the Minister of Finance:

He swore her fair and thought her bright

While she was black as hell and dark as night.

I think that sums up pretty well the financial attitude of hon. gentlemen opposite. Where is our money going? That is the next question the people will ask. The militia Estimates alone for 1914-15 amount to $10,867,000, and we have yet the Supplementary Estimates for the coming yeat. Mark you, I am not including in this amount the summer trips to Switzerland of the hon. Minister of Militia, nor am I including, .as he is not in his seat at the present moment, his winter trips with his colonels to the hot springs of Virginia. That is just one item. Some of the money is going to pay agents and steamship companies to bring artisans over to Canada to compete with our artisans. A great deal of it is going over to England to bring English immigrants to this country-and I hope that the best immigrants will come over.

But a great deal is going to bring the people who are to be found around Stepney Green and Pigeon Market-those who are familiar with the city of London will know what locality that is in-over here, to be a charge upon the people and the taxpayers of this country. I do not want to be misunderstood. I say a great deal of it is going over to England to bring a good class of immigrants, and we are getting a very good class of immigrants from England, and also from Ireland and Scotland. But we are also getting some mighty poor immigrants from England, and from Ireland and from Scotland. But if we are getting some poor immigrants from the British Isles, we are getting worse from eastern Europe. I wish to protest as strongly as I am able, in the name of the labouring classes of Canada against the labour market of this country being overcrowded by the bringing in of

labourers without the Government knowing where they are going to place them. I have not the figures under my hand, but I think that last year 122,000 labourers were brought into this country. What have they done during the winter? Would it not have been bettter to leave them in their own country where they would have been taken care of by their friends? They are brought into this country to compete with Canadian labourers and are brought here under misrepresentations. This is a good country for Canadians; it is a good country for any man to come to who has capital to invest; it is a good country to come to for any man who has steady employment before him. But to bring immigrants into this country, without any money, without any prospect of employment when they get here, I say it is a crime on the part of the Government to spend the money of this country in encouraging such immigration. That is one way that the money of the people of this country is going. To substantiate my statements upon this point, it is sufficient to look at any number of the Labour Gazettte, a publication of this present Government, to see that thousands of labourers in the larger cities of this country have nothing to do. I think it is about time for this to cease. A resolution was adopted by the Vancouver Trades and Labour Council and has been placed in my hands. I wish to read it to you:

Whereas-Continuous efforts are being made by transportation companies, emigration agencies and other societies to induce employers in Canada to import labour from outside the Dominion, and

Whereas-These companies and societies have received and are now receiving government guarantees and grants of public money, and Whereas-The arrival of immigrants on these shores during a time of severe depression such as now exists not only intensifies the serious unemployment question, but tends to deteriorate the already too low standard of the workers' living, consequently retarding industrial and national progress, therefore be it Resolved-That the federal and provincial governments of Canada discontinue assisting financially or otherwise such corporations and societies and further take steps to ensure that correct information be given to prospective inmigrants in their own homes, and be it further Resolved-That copies of this resolution be sent to Premier Borden, the federal members of the House of Commons, and the press.

I subscribe to every word contained in this resolution, and I hope the Government will take some action.

Let me now say a word upon the question of the tariff. I said that this Government is led by the manufacturers. Why should they be led by the manufacturers

anyway? Why should they always be catering to the manufacturers? I am not against the manufacturers; there are thousands of employees in the constituency which I represent employed by manufacturers. I suppose in the constituency I represent are some of the biggest factories in the Dominion of Canada, but I believe that while it may not always be pleasant to have to do so, it is the duty of representatives in this House, whether on the right or on the left, to tell the manufacturers when it is necessary that all the legislation on tariff matters ought not to be directed in their interest, but that the farmers and the laborers must get their fair share. In 1912-13 the exports of manufactures from this country amounted to $43,692,708. For the eleven months of 1913 they amounted to $51,204,162. There were 389,873 people employed in manufacturing and mechanical institutions out of a total of wage earners of 1,300,000. For the manufacturers the whole of the tariff of this country is made by the present Government. The agriculturist has no show under this Government. We have the farmers coming down from the West turned down by the Government, and I shall have a word to say of their demands in connection with free wheat. What are the farmers of this country doing? If the manufacturers are exporting forty-three and a half millions what are the farmers doing? In 1912-13 they exported goods to the value of $150,145,661 and for the eleven months of 1914 to the value of $191,707,483. So, in other words, they have exported three times as much as the manufacturers have ever done in this country. How many do they employ? 716,937 out of the total of 1,300,000 wage earners, and yet they have not a voice with the present Government. I have referred to industrial Canada and to the address of the president of the Manufacturers' Association, and his demand for increased duties upon iron and steel. The manufacturers got it: they got more, they got free coal for their smelting institutions. They are not exactly satisfied yet, because I find in the Free Press of this city, of April 7, 1914, that Mr. Rowley, who is an ex-president of the Manufacturers' Association, and president of the E. B. Eddy Company, gave his opinion. He says:

In the first place, Mr. Rowley thinks the farmers have already got too much and are going to get still more under the revisions.

Just imagine any hon. gentleman who has listened to the Budget speech of the Finance Minister and to the speeches of hon. gentlemen opposite upon the tariff, being told by

Mt. Rowley that the farmers of this country have already got too much and are going to get still more under the revision!

In the second place, Mr. nowiey believes the changes will bear too heavily on the paper industry.

Of course, the country knows that his is the paper industry.

The farmers get the best of everything They always have, and they are getting it in the present revision. I think (he said) that the Government acted wisely in not adopting free wheat. It would have been a great mistake to have allowed our grain and fodder to go to a foreign country. Our wheat is better than theirs anyway, and we should keep it.

Well, all right, I am in favour of that. Will he buy it? Will the manufacturers buy the wheat? We are told by the manufacturers that the farmers should keep their wheat. The Western farmer asks for a market for his wheat and we simply wish to give him free entry into the United States in order that the may get all the profit that is coming to him, but hon. gentlemen opposite want to take that profit away. The Ottawa Citizen, that good Conservative organ, which I have already referred to this evening, also spoke editorially on the tariff question on April 10, 1914, as follows:

According to the budget figures Canadian exports to the United States increased from $112,000,000 in 1911 to $161,000,000 in 1913-14. In the same period imports from the United States increased from $274,000,000 to $361,000 000. The aggregate trade between the countries was $387,000,000 in 1911, and in 1913 it reached $523,000,000. Canada is the second customer of the United States to-day.

If I heard anything from hon. gentlemen opposite in the election of 1911, it was that we should not trade with the Yankees, that we should trade within the empire, and yet under the present government I find that Canada is the second customer of the United States. I am sure that the loyalty of hon. gentlemen opposite and the loyalty of certain citizens of this country must be sorely affected when they hear that under the benign protection of the present Government Canada is the second customer of the United States. The Citizen continues:

These facts are interesting from a trade standpoint. But what becomes thereby of an argument frequently heard in the 1911 campaign, that increased trade with the United States eventually meant the annexation of Canada to that country?

When we find a newspaper like the Citizen beginning to doubt the political honesty of hon. gentlemen opposite, our friends

opposite must not be surprised if we do not place any credence whatever in their arguments during the election of 1911. The Citizen says further: [DOT]

If as Hon. Mr. White pointed out in his speech, this great aggregate increase in three . years is a matter of congratulation, how much more a matter of congratulation would it be if the trade were even greater, as it would be by the abolition of the tariff on wheat, as asked by the western grain growers and the Manitoba legislature?

Here is a good Conservative organ asking for the abolition of the duty on wheat. Hearing Western representatives pointing out to this House the usefulness of abolishing the duty on wheat and hearing also Conservative organs saying that it would he a good thing, no wonder that I myself believe that it would be a good thing, and I will support any measure introduced in this House asking for the removal of the duty on wheat. The Citizen goes on:

'It is not advisable that a nation's tariff should be so arranged as to fit into the tariff policy of another nation,' said Mr, White. Then he advocates a surtax of 25 per cent ad valorem on the imports of countries which discriminate against Canada; in other words, the Finance Minister fits our tariff into the tariff of any other country, and automatically at that, which makes the first move. But, granting that Mr. White's dictum be accepted as a protective principle, it would seem to demolish one of the strong arguments of protectionists, that the advantage of a tariff lies in the fact that while providing a measure of defence it can he modified to meet the hostility or friendliness of another country's tariff, a condition which, protectionists assert, would not obtain in the case of a free trade country competing with tariff nations.

These self-contradictions are evident, hut despite their presence, the claim is made that only by a tariff is our national prosperity assured.

I believe -that if we had better transportation facilities in this country, including water facilities, we should have cheaper food and therefore I was somewhat interested yesterday in 'listening to the demands made by a very large delegation from all over Canada asking for the construction of the Georgian Bay canal. I was rather anxious to hear what answer would be given by the minister. When free wheat was asked for I had heard the Minister of Finance say to the farmers of the West: Wait until more railways are completed, and until the Welland canal is deepened. When I heard the people of Canada clamouring against the high cost of living I had heard the Minister of Finance say: Wait until

the commission on the high cost of living reports. When I heard the commercial men

of this country complain that money was tight, I had heard the Minister of Finance say: Wait until anarchy ceases in Mexico. So I was somewhat anxious to hear what the Minister of Public Works would say to [DOT] the delegation upon the Georgian Bay canal. - And this is what I heard. The hon. minister in his nice polished manner first of all said: Wait till the Prime Minister comes back from the South and I will tell him all you say. Thinking that might not be a sufficient answer he went on: Wait until the commission which we have appointed reports on the commercial feasibility of the project. I am inclined to call the present Government to-night a waiting Government, but I will not call them an indolent Government. They travel enough but they make us wait a long time for information. We on this side of the House would like to see the Government do something, but they always say: Wait until this commission or that commission reports or until this or that happens. They undertook to build the Hudson's Bay railway and now they are waiting till the ice goes away from the Hudson Bay ports. We want to know, and as representatives of the people of Canada we have a right to know, what they are going to do to reduce the cost of living in this country. But what are we told? Wait till the commission reports. Nobody knows where that commission is. Do you know, Mr. Speaker, where the commission is? At one moment it is in the city of Quebec behind closed doors, and at another moment it is in some other part of the country. The commissioners are all, I believe, deputy ministers. I presume they are in offices now. If they are here why do they not make the report which they must have prepared? Just imagine a commission appointed and sent round the country to find out whether the cost of living in this country is high. We know the cost of living is high and we want the Government to remedy that condition. . The farmers of the West are asking for the very same thing but they put their demand in a different way. They say: Our grain is congested, we want to have a fair chance with the manufacturers of this country and we will have a fair chance if you give us free wheat. The Government answers: Wait. No doubt they will be appointing a commission next to find out whether there is a duty upon wheat.

I believe that there are two causes for the high cost of living in this country, and that one of them is the tariff. I am borne out in that belief by the manufacturers' own statement that the tariff is a eon-

tributing cause, although the manufacturers say it is not the whole cause. The other cause is to be found in the freight rates. The Government ought to grapple with the transportation problem. They ought to wait no longer, they ought not to shillyshally, but to go ahead at once and deal with that important issue. The people in 1911, when they elected these gentlemen to office, at least expected that they would be able to administer the finances of the country, but instead of administering the finances or the affairs of the country, they are handing them over to commissions.

Speaking for the farmers of Canada, I must say that I am not satisfied with what the Government have done in connection with agricultural implements. I do not believe that by a reduction of five per cent upon agricultural implements the Government are helping the farmers. What the Government should have done, and done at once in view of the fact that the taxes bear more heavily upon the farmers than upon any other class, was to give free agricultural implements. I will support any movement in favour of free agricultural implements.

Before I resume my seat, I want to offer to the House some suggestions which I think would be in the interest of the agriculturists and labourers of Canada, and I shall state them in a few words. I believe that the Government ought to establish more experimental farms and to offer bonuses by way of prizes for agricultural competitions. I believe that the Government ought to make agricultural colleges free, that they ought to give the books free, and that the sons of farmers who go to these colleges should receive instruction free; that.in every sense these agricultural colleges ought to be free. I believe that the Government ought to assist farm labourers in this country as they assist farm labourers from other countries in migrating from one part of Canada to another. I believe they ought to offer the farmers of the East facilities to take up the lands of the West. They ought to give them financial assistance so that as far as possible we may be able to keep the land of the country amongst Canadians. I would advocate that a fund be set aside by the Government out of which farmers may borrow, say at two per cent, the Government to pay the balance of the interest and to provide a sinking fund, and that the money coming from that fund should be used 10 p.m. for providing homes and outbuildings for the farmers.

Speaking on behalf of the labourers of Canada, I would say that the Government should set aside annually a sum of money to assist in building labourers' modern cottages, the sum to set aside, to be loaned on the same conditions as I have just stated in connection with farmers' homes and outbuildings; that is that it shall be loaned at the rate of two per cent for a certain number of years, the Government to provide for the payment of the balance of the interest and sinking fund. I would say further that the Government ought to establish more employment bureaus throughout Canada, and see to it that before labourers are. brought to this country the labourers already in the country have been provided with suitable employment.

I conclude my remarks by saying that instead of money being wasted upon useless drill sheds and armouries, instead of money ' being expended in bringing certain immigrants from foreign countries to our shores under false representations, instead of money being expended upon useless public works, as it is being expended at the present moment, the Government ought to provide that Canada shall always remain the home of the Canadian, that the one who shall receive the first protection from the Government shall be the Canadian. Therefore, I advocate this policy of aiding farmers in erecting and improving homes and outbuildings, and I advocate the policy of aiding labourers in building homes, as it is done in other countries. It is well known that the labouring classes can not go to the banks like other classes of society and borrow money to improve their homes because they have not the same security to offer to the banks and the banks will not advance them money as they will advance it to other people. If we have a surplus of $36,500,000, and if that surplus is growing every year, it becomes the bounden duty of the Government to see to it that the cost of living bear as lightly as possible upon the consumer, and it is the duty of the Government to see to the happiness, prosperity and welfare of the people in order to carry out the mission of the statesmen who have gone before the roresent ministers, looking to the upbuilding of Canada in conformity with her position as a member of the great family of nations. Instead of pursuing the policy of expending money upon warships, which are not required by Great Britain, and instead of a policy of lavish expenditure upon soldiers' uniforms, soldiers' clubs, drill halls and armouries, where we simply require sufficient protection, the Government should see to the welfare of e^ery Canadian citizen.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

John Hampden Burnham

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. J. H. BURNHAM (West Peterborough) :

Mr. Speaker, before referring to what seems to me to be the most important event about to develop in the twentieth century, I should like to make a few remarks in regard to the splendid financial showing of my hon. friend the Minister of Finance (Mr. White) in his Budget Speech, and in regard to his announcement of a substantial surplus. There can be no question that to be able to announce a surplus at the end of the year in the ordinary and well understood way of book-keeping, is an achievement worthy of consideration. If we juggle with the figures so as to confuse capital with income expenditure, we can bring out a deficit in any country in the world. That, however, has not been done here. It seems to me that fair treatment and praise ought to he accorded to the Minister of Finance for his eminently successful handling of the finances of this country. I also wish to compliment him on the firm front he has shown to the attempt recently made by a large railway corporation to make another assault upon the treasury of this country. I think the mem-, bers of this House are of one mind that anything that is to be done shall be in the nature of salvage, not of coming to the rescue, however, of the men who launched this scheme, who boasted of it, and who manipulated it in every conceivable way to the detriment of the individual and ultimately of the nation itself. The people will not stand for such attacks, and we are thoroughly convinced that the Government has no intention of granting the demands of this corporation.

I also wish to compliment the hon. Minister of Finance on his judicious tempering of the home market. He realizes what protection is. Hon. gentlemen opposite in many cases either are not fair or do not understand the meaning of protection. Protection may in some oases mean free trade. Protection is control; it is doing that which, considering all the interests of the nation together, is best suited to the individual interest which we may be considering. If free wheat, considering the general interest of this country, is best for the farmers and the agricultural interests, let us give it to them; but it is highly improper and wrong to say that that is the proposition before this country. The proposition before this country is to give free wheat, free flour and free semolina, an en-

tirely different matter. The idea is to give free wheat, which they can have at any time, but at the same time to give them control of the manufacturing market; our flour market, and our semolina market. That is an entirely different proposition and ought to be so considered. Yet hon. gentlemen opposite are not fair enough to consider it in that way. Moreover, they ignore the fact, when they say that the western farmers want free wheat, that the western farmers are not the only farmers in this country. The farmers in my district do not demand free wheat. This question must be considered properly; and sending up this everlasting prayer for freedom, for free wheat, free food and free everything else, is not the way in, which the affairs of this world are carried on. We are not living in any great earthly Sunday school; we are living in a place in which it takes us 'all our time to live and some of us do not know very well where we are going afterwards.

I will now endeavour to make a short reply to two of the gentlemen' who have preceded me. They have attacked militarism, backed up by all the splendours of the idealistic principle of peace. Every one knows that, if you are simply going to take it for granted that there is peace the world over, you are going to wake up a badly mistaken man; you will have your pockets rifled if no worse fate befalls you. It is not on the principle of peace that we have our police and other systems of protection. The most preposterous thing of all is that a party which proposes to spend an absolutely colossal sum on a navy, is growling about a few millions expended for militia purposes. If the Liberal plan of a navy is carried out, then I say: Heaven

help Canada. I grant the militia expenditure is bad enough, but it is a mere bagatelle in comparison with what the Liberal party say they will do. Surely we are entitled to have a little consistency from these hon. gentlemen; we do not ask for much.

As to depression, the hon. gentlemen opposite point the finger of scorn at Canada and particularly at the Conservative party, charging us with being responsible for this depression. The hon. member for Rouville (Mr. Lemieux) was candid enough to say that the depression was world-wide. Surely that is a sufficient answer unless it can be proved that the depression of Canada is extraordinary. How that can be proved in the face of expanding trade and

[Mr. Burnham. 3

a surplus of $36,000,000 passes my understanding.

Hon. gentlemen opposite speak about the agriculturists, but absolutely ignore all the patent facts arising from day to day. Do not we know that some of the products of the farm are coming from New Zealand and Australia by the shipload? If hon. gentlemen opposite do not know that fact, I can tell them that there are forming in this country to-day companies of Canadians who are shifting their basis of production, of manufacture, to the agency business and are actually preparing to receive large cargoes of farm produce from the Antipodes. One gentleman told me the other day that he had received a wire from Vancouver oi the arrival of a large shipment of butter from New Zealand, and that simultaneously the price of butter in Montreal and Toronto had fallen two cents a pound. Is that what hon. gentlemen opposite wish to offer the farmer of this country? If you want to make the price of food cheaper, that is the way to do it; but we want to protect the farmer and therefore we say: Keep on the duty. We want to build up Canada; we do not wish to build up the Antipodes, and therefore we say: Give us the power to do it. The absurdity that frequently arises is the incidence of 'taxation not the fact of protection. All that hon. gentlemen opposite have to do is to apply the simple geometric principle that, if you add the same thing to the same thing as a constant, the result must be practically and theoretically the same; that is to say, if we add fifty per cent protection to all interests and matters of production in this country, then each in relation to the other will be exactly in the same position as before, yet we shall have all the advantage of protection against other nations. That shows how easy it is to do these things which lion, gentlemen opposite say they do not understand. They point to the inequalities, to the improprieties which exist as if they were the principle, but a simple illustration shows how easy it is to establish the principle. That surely is a vindication of the principle, and I am bold enough to challenge anybody to deny it. It is a simple principle, and certainly cannot be gainsaid. The hon. member for Wright touched upon the alliance with the Nationalists in Quebec. Judging by the votes in this House, the Nationalists are not allied with us; they have voted consistently with the Liberal party here. I do not understand Nationalism myself, but if the Nationalists are people with whom

an alliance should not be made, why do these hon. gentlemen accept that alliance? And they do more than accept it, they profit by it. One strange error was made by the hon. member when he said that the farmers of this country were handicapped in not having the proper or usual securities of others allowed to them upon which to borrow. That is the very thing that was provided for last session in the Bank Act.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

Emmanuel Berchmans Devlin

Liberal

Mr. DEVLIN:

I did not say that. I was speaking of the labouring classes.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

John Hampden Burnham

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BURNHAM:

Did not the hon. gentleman mention farmers' security ?

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB
CON

John Hampden Burnham

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BURNHAM:

Then w6 agree that it is taken for granted that the farmer has the same facilities as others, and I am satisfied. I will now branch out on at least an equally important part of this great subject, and that is the rise of the new eastern question. We are well aware- to go back for a moment to first principles -that great movements develop slowly but they actually rise very quickly, and it is a wise people who watch and are ready ' to take occasion by the hand ' in connection with these movements. It is not necessary to go into this subject very deeply from the earliest up to the present time. But we may perhaps refer to the fact that it was the carelessness of the rich Babylonians that precipitated their overthrow. It was the carelessness of the Assyrians, in turn, which put them into the hands of the Medes and Persians.

It was the luxury and carelessness and self-complacency of the Medesand Persians that put them intothe hands of Alexander the Great.

Through the same cause the Shepherd Kings in the early times were enabled to overcome Egypt and overcome its great civilization. The wreck of that great nation, that most ancient nation, was all that remained of it to adorn Grecian civilization. In the course of time that great nation, the Greek, was overthrown by the Romans. Then came the day of fate for the Romans, when the barbarians-our own ancestors, and particularly the ancestors of the Opposition-'Overthrew the Romans. And now we have to watch lest a still greater horde overthrow our civilization. You are well aware, Mr. Speaker, that there has been a great awakening in the East, and that great awakening has been due particularly to two things-the importation and assimilation of western

ideas involving the change from monarchy to republicanism in China, and the importation of western capital. When did it begin? It began the very moment that the tariff in the United States was sufficiently lowered. Wien, of course, it became an easy matter and a great inducement to capture this tremendous American market. And the American capitalist, and the American engineer in his employ, went to China, looked over the land and saw how well it was equipped, with plenty of cheap labour, with plenty of natural resources for them to take advantage of the accumulated wealth and prosperity of the United States, which necessarily will ultimately bring about the absolute breakdown of American labour and American civilization. There is no possible way out of it. The highest paid artisan in China gets 30 cents a day; the ordinary labourer gets 5 cents a day. The Chinese are learning by various means the arts of the western workman, and it will be a long, long time before his ambition or necessities compel him to ask what the western workman gets, namely, all the way from $2 to $5 per day. We find that China contains everything necessary for great economic development. She has coal and iron of the very best quality; she is capable of producing vast quantities of agricultural products; she also has an enormous population. And, since they have a religion which requires them to worship their ancestors, it is necessary for them always to provide the ancestors. As a consequence there are no bachelors and no old maids in China. They must all get married, and they must all have chidren,

and they do. So that source of supply is well provided for. In looking over the China Year-Book, I find that every province of China has plenty of coal and iron of such condition and in such position that it is easily got at and easily worked. In one steel works alone 20,000 men aTe employed. They also have plenty iof copper, lead, antimony, gypsum, gold, and in fact all economic minerals required in manufacturing. And they have a large number of factories. Of cotton spinning and weaving mills they have no less than forty-one; they have also chemical works, cement and brick works, furniture factories, glass works, iron and steel works, leather works, mining companies, oil mills, paper mills, printing works, railway works, rope factories, sawmills, silk mills, smelting works, soap and candle factories, tea factories and sugar refineries. They are well on the way, you

see, to become a great manufacturing nation. All that was necessary was western capital and western management, and these are being given with a lavish hand at the present time. The increase in the export of native Chinese goods to foreign countries has increased wonderfully. For instance in the export of animals, including cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, horses, mules and poultry, the increase has been extremely rapid within a few years. Cotton, especially raw cotton has been exported in vast quantities; it is soon to become a factor in the world. We find that they are also exporting wheat flour, furniture, glassware and matting. Their export of matting, with the low tariff we have and the cheap labour they have, has 'broken up our matting factories-I happen to have a knowledge of that. One thing is evident about the opposition in this matter, and it is this: When' they cry free

trade, they do not mean it. I have been amazed to hear hon. gentlemen talk free trade and then get up, one after the other, and say they are for protection. Are we not entitled to some consistency and fair-dealing in this matter? I think we are. There is no use coming here if it is merely for the purpose of engaging in a battle of wits, in contradictions and in inconsistencies. Let us be reasonable in this matter, and we may get away from here before the 1st of July.

The Chinese have shown themselves to be expert financiers, easily adapting themselves to 'Complicated situations, and their budget is a fine type of skill and correct book-keeping. Their shipping is not what it ought to be, but they are shortly to begin the construction of ships. They have the men, they have the skill, they have the ambition, and they will very soon have the ships. When they have the ships and the manufactures, the cattle and the sheep and the poultry and the eggs and all the rest of it, they then will be able to ship them over here at low rates. This world would be all right as a free trade world if the people and various civilizations were all equal, but they are not. Distinctions -must be made; those distinctions must be preserved, and they can only be preserved by control. Free circulation of commodities and of capital cannot possibly be permitted if the conditions which naturally follow in their train are to be so vastly different in different communities.

A very singular and instructive thing in connection with the lowering of the tariff in the United States is the fact that Cuba and Chili have suddenly sprung into prominence as sources of supply for iron ore.

In Chile there is an immense mountain of iron ore, said to be wondrously rich. They can run the ore by means of a wire rope from that mountain to the ships in the harbour, and the ships convey it round to the American steel works in the United States, which are built near the water's edge. Thus the Chilian people supply iron ore to the Americans, with the result that Chilian prosperity is rapidly rising. I am sure that we wish no harm to Chile, but we do not wish it to expand at the expense of the American people, and certainly not at the expense of our own people. The same thing happened in Cuba. There a great supply of iron ore has been discovered, and, just like the Chilian ores, it has driven back all the western or Lake Superior ores-driven them almost out of the market. The American steel manufacturer wants cheaper ore; the American machinist wants cheaper machinery; the American consumer wants cheaper product, and the labourer has to suffer as a consequence. Capital can go anywhere. Capital wants cheap food, cheap ore, cheap raw material, as soon as it attains an export basis. The manufacturer in the United States has ceased to care about local labour; he is quite willing to let in cheap labour and the products of cheap labour from abroad, to the detriment and ruin of his own people, so long as he himself makes plenty of money. That is the peculiarity of free trade; the rich become richer under free trade, and the poor poorer. The capitalist does not want protection; what he wants is that the whole world should be in competition, each community with the other, and that the people of all nations should come and beg him to partake of their labour. The minute you have free trade in labour, and the minute you have free trade in labour's products, the capitalist can go where the vantage ground is best-in Canada, China, or Africa, or wherever it may be-while poor Chinese or East Indians are doing his work. In the meantime, Coxie's army is marching upon Washington, and the Liberal Opposition here are crying out about stagnation in Canada. These are the facts, and it is necessary for us to look at them carefully, because our doom is impending if we do not rise to the occasion.

India also is very rapidly developing in this particular. India has laTge steel works, and we find that she is .shipping manufactured steel and pig iron to San Francisco, in face of the $2.50 per ton duty-and, of course, when that duty was

wiped off, they made just that much more profit. These products have been shipped in immense and rapidly-increasing quantities; that is just what is happening at the present moment, and that is what will happen. It will not be long before the American people realize that it is better to be a Mexican or a Hindu or a Chinaman than an American, because if you are a Hindu or a Chinaman you will get work from American capital, whereas if you are an American citizen you will not. Either capital must be harnessed, or labour must be protected.

I was glad to hear the hon. member for Wright speaking about immigration as he did. Like all things, immigration should be tempered; it should be kept within bounds-that is protection. The hon. gentleman voiced .a loud wail against protection one minute, and demanded it the next. He demanded protection against the labourer and the workingman-that is what he did; and that is nothing more or less than pure protection. It is another of those glaring inconsistencies which are so prevalent in hon. gentlemen of the Opposition, but I shall not say anything about these inconsistencies so long as they come home to those who are concerned with them. I shall not object as long as these gentlemen find out the truth in the end; sometimes they only find it out at election time, but so long as they find it out, I am content.

As I endeavoured to point out, capital does not require protection, neither does the consumer want protection. The consumer as consumer wants the cheapest posssible food and raiment, but the two classes that must have protection are labour and agriculture. Because if agriculture is not protected as we have seen, then it, too, must go the way of all flesh and has in addition to cheap labour to struggle against inequalities of climate. We have Gorgas the man who enabled them to build the Panama canal, the greatest sanitary engineer of this or any other age, who has been sent for abroad, who, after making the death rate in Panama and the canal zone less than that of New York, city, has gone to Africa and discovered the causes of plague there. He says he can make Africa as pleasant and healthful to live in as any person would desire, and, as he says, the return in the tropics for toil is four times that to men in the temperate zones, all you need to do is to rescue the tropics from the curse of bad sanitation and

you have their cheap products thrown on the market too. The occupants of the temperate zones must either go then into the torrid zone or suffer the consequences.

It may be just as well at this juncture to cite what the editor of the Toronto Globe said at Providence, Rhode Island, on March 27:

There can be no ' yellow peril ' on the Pacific coast threatening one English-speaking interest alone, said Dr. ,T. A. Macdonald, of Toronto, and a member of the world's Peace Foundation, addressing the New England Manufacturing; Jewellers and Silversmiths Association last night.

The scaremongers tell us, Dr. Macdonald said, that a struggle is coming. They say it will he on the Pacific. But if it comes it will be one struggle all the way from San Diego and the Mexican frontier to the snow fastnesses of the Yukon.

He has evidently thought the question fully over and knows what he is speaking of. I would commend his remarks to hon. gentlemen opposite.

In order to make my case as strong as possible, it will be necessary for me, especially as this question has not been introduced in the House before, so far as I am aware, to quote some, passages from recent works of prominent and credible men. I quote from an article in Public Opinion, an English magazine that has existed for more than fifty years, and, as every magazine reader knows, ranks with the Nation, the Athenaeum and the Academy:

Mr. Eddy's opening chapter fills out the glowing picture of ' The Renaissance of Asia.' A more astonishing set of facts surely are not to be found m any other thirty-nine pages of type. They show the ceaseless work of the roaring looms of time.

During seven months of 1912-13, in a journey across Asia, including India, Burma, Ceylon, the Straits! Settlements* China, Korea, and Japan, the writer has been impressed with a great awakening that is sweeping over the whole of that vast continent of Asia. The same principles that created our Western civilization are at work to-day in the ancient East, bringing about the same great transformations there that they wrought in the West. So vast and widespread is this awakening that it might well he called ' The Renaissance of Asia.' And yet it is more than this; it is an intellectual renaissance, a religious reformation, and a nineteenth century of scientific and industrial development all combined. Greater in volume, in depth, and in power than the Renaissance in Europe four centuries ago, it may prove to be even greater in significance also. The population in the fifteenth century was less than one hundred millions, while that of Asia to-day is over nine hundred millions. Greater in rapidity than the awakening in the West, this combined renaissance and reformation is crowding into decades in Asia what was the slow growth of centuries in Europe.

Further, he says:

The economic awakening or Asia is as clearly marked as the political and intellectual. During the latter half of the nineteenth century tlie trade of India increased fourfold and that ot China sixfold, while that of Japan has increased sevenfold in twenty years. But the twentieth century will see far greater developments in the East than in the nineteenth.

The chimneys of the great factories of Osaka and Calcutta tower like those of Birmingham. We travelled round the world on Jaranese steamship lines, comfortable, highly efficient, and paying dividends, while some of the American lines on the Pacific can scarcely pay expenses.'

China has the greatest coalfields in the world. Shansi province has enough to supply it for a thousand years. American steel magnates say they cannot compete with Chinese iron on the Pacific coast.

I shall further call attention to a remarkable publication headed ' Shall the White Races Dominate the World ' by Major Stewart L. Murray. Of this Public Opinion says:

Major Stewart D. Murray calls upon the Anglo-Saxons of the British Empire and the white men of Europe and the United States to stand together so that they may hold dominion in the world.

Major Murray writes in the Nineteenth Century, and his article is extremely lucid and interesting, and many will agree with his arguments" and aims who do not accept his God's-white-man point of view.

He calls for ' an Anglo-Saxon policy ' because there are ' causes at work to-day which, if adequate counter-precautions are not taken by us, may in the fullness of time result in the expulsion of our race from Australia, New Zeland, and Africa, where we are least firmly established.'

In the event of a great European war he sees ' Europe, including Great Britain, helpless and impotent as regards the Pacific. Then will come the opportunity of the Japanese, with the Chinese behind them.' 'Africa is beginning to stir; Asia is beginning to arm.'

If we can only hold the Anglo-Saxon lands for the next fifty years all may end well,' says Major Murray; 'the Yellow Danger, at least in its acute and menacing phase, may pass away and be succeeded by some working agreement.

And let us note what Napoleon said:

Napoleon at St. Helena foretold that 'the force of circumstances' would eventually drive the European powers into some form of union.

These statements are given, great prominence in the English press, and it is not for us, who have already received our warning in a more practical way to ignore them. We have already had to take measures on the Pacific coast to prevent an undue influx of the Orientals. It has given, rise to a great deal of trouble and heart-burning, but they are only the skirmishers, they are only the outposts of 900,000,000 of people of which 150,000,000 are working-men, who

are only too eager and too willing to get an opportunity to trade which would enable them to compete with us and to put us out of sight in the great world competition. Then we would know what stagnation meant; then we would know that our working-men who must draw from $2 to $4 to make a decent living, would have to become as Chinese and Orientals or suffer the consequences. We see how the Chinese who are here work. They all live togther in their laundries in a way that we do not consider proper for white people to live, but that does not seem to attract our attention particularly. We do not seem to observe that these men aTe in direct competition with our own. They are very successful, they have cornered the laundry market, although they charge high prices. The simple reason is that their cheap living enables them to have a margin of profit that prevents white competition. Would any hon. member in this House dare to say that he believes in the free admission of the Oriental or of the products of Oriental labour? Any one who would dare to say that would not be a member of this House after the next election. It is too absurd, it is too plain, it is something that he who runs may read and understand. To temper it is protection; and these gentlemen will employ protection, still howling for free trade, something which the hon. member for Rouville frankly said was a mere fanciful dream-and that is all it is.

I also have something here from the Free Press of Winnipeg, in which the manager of the Ogilvie Milling Company says:

As soon as there is a fair market for high grades, the milling will be done in Japan and China where it can he done cheaper than in Canada or the United States.

The next thing the Ogilvie Milling capitalists will do will be to go to China or India or perhaps to Africa, to employ cheap labour there and then ship the goods back here. There is nothing to prevent it.

It is interesting to note the immigration to the United States of America since 1825. From Austria-Hungary about 3,000,000; Germany about five and a half million; American countries other than the United States, one and a half million; Russia, one and a quarter million; Ireland, nearly 5,000,000; and Canada 1,100,000, mostly French; from England a little over 3,000,000. You see, Mr. Speaker, there has been a vast immigration from those countries, and as pointed out by the hon. member for

Frontenac (Mr. Edwards) a very great immigration from free trade England. Immigration such as that indicates two things, first of all that it is necessary to leave that country to get work, and, secondly, it makes better conditions for those left behind.

I wish to turn for a moment to what I regard as of almost equal importance', what seems to me the foundation of all economic life-I refer to the minimum wage. The whole case of labour unrest is based upon that. The great bulk of labour unrest is absolutely genuine and is caused by the fact that labour has aspired to a higher civilization than labour is able to maintain. Those people who are not prepared to assist labour in maintaining that civilization condemn it to degeneration and to a degradation to which labour will never submit. A standard of life is something that is possible. It is something that can be guaranteed and as long as there is some point to start from variations can be made. The point that is started from at the present day is the reward of capital. If capital is well rewarded it will continue to employ; if it is not, it will cease to employ and labour will consequently suffer. But if the basis of all calculations was the minimum wage that labour can exist upon and develop the civilization of which we were speaking, there would be no further difficulty. The cost of living would be higher, but the ratio would be the same. Whatever else happens there must be a living wage-I emphasize the words ' living wage.' The testimony given before the Old Age Pension Committee, the testimony on this subject before every committee held here or anywhere else, goes to show that there must be a falling off in the standard of life if labour is to be able to live. I am not speaking of well-paid labour; I am speaking 'of that very large proportion of underpaid labour. A living wage makes no difference to the employer because if he has to pay so much more to labour he can charge so much more, but it makes all the difference in the world to labour, and when a thing can be so easily done-I am sure you will find that this proposition is economically and scientifically sound-why is it not done? Why is it that charges and counter-charges are hurled across the floor of this House which if true show that both sides have plundered this country of millions and millions of dollars. I hope that it is not true, but the gentlemen on this side have said it about the gentlemen there, and the gentlemen there have said it about the gentlemen on this

side, either they have all actually plundered the country or the people who made the charges have said what is not true. You can take your choice. It is a very painful alternative. If one half of it is true, labour, agricultural and industrial, could have been endowed and be living in comfort. We have been sustaining more or less a lot of tramps, not necessarily in rags but tramps in fine clothes, and it has got to be stopped. Common sense must be infused into the conduct of the industrial, agricultural and economic affairs of this country. This frightful waste must be stopped. Is it not a remarkable thing that in one day of the week labour could produce all that is required for the maintenance of all the people of this world in comfort, if it were not that people are so greedy and so desirous of laying up wealth in the form of capital for their own aggrandisement and luxury and enjoymeiit that they will not hand it out because it would lower the market. Yet it is a fact that one day's labour a week would provide all the people of this world with a comfortable living. There must be a screw loose somewhere, when we consider that men have to work long hours every day of the week. I am sorry the hon. member for Red Deer (Mr. M. Clark) is not here to-night. He might believe me when I say that the public reports show what I am unable to believe, namely that 576,000 children under 14 years of age have to work in England for their living, and some of them are no older than three. England has been able to compete in the world's market because when a mechanic or an artisan gets married there his wife goes to the factory and helps him to earn a living and if they have children they also go out and bring in money when they are old enough. In Canada the man is supposed to provide for the home, the wife does the work of the home and is supposed to maintain herself in comfort and perhaps some dignity and her children. She is not supposed to be a domestic and industrial slave. We do not want that kind, of thing in this country. Nowhere in the world ought there to be such a high standard of life- as in Canada to-day and we must see that it is not lowered by competition from anywhere. Mr. Lloyd-George-I am sure his authority will not be impeached, has written the preface for the forthcoming volume of Professor Ernst Sieper's series of monographs dealing with the whole range of the culture of England to-day.

Professor Sieper, who occupies the chair of English Philology at the University of Munich, has, in his work of familiarizing

Germany with English conditions and achievements, the support of the German-English Friendship Committee, and this particular volume of the series he edits deals with the new social reforms that have been brought into force in England.

What does Mr. Lloyd George say? He says:

Not too late, perhaps, but certainly not too soon, we are beginning to apply sound com-n ercial principles to national life and enterprise.

He says there must be higher wages for a vast body of men. He goes on:

But there was also the national aspect of the question. No nation whose prosperity depends upon its industrial efficiency can afford to tolerate on a large scale deplorable labour conditions of the kind which made the Trade Boards Act necessary.

The Trades Boards Act is the Act just passed in England.

For of what use is it to level up the condition of the working classes by Factory, Insurance and other Acts while at the same time it is subject all along the line to the downward pull of a mass of underpaid labour, altogether outside the influence of organization.

That is the condition of affairs in England. It is idle to keep on indulging in various forms of recrimination. Let us look at things as they are critically and seriously and endeavour, if possible, to profit by it. We find that the majority report of the Poor Law Commission in England states that:

No country, however rich, can permanently hold its own in the race of international competition if hampered by an increasing load of this weight, or can successfully perform the role of sovereignty beyond the seas if a portion of its own folk at home are sinking below the civilization and aspirations of its subject races abroad.

That is a very severe indictment, hut it is the report of the Poor Law Board of 1909:

Nearly five years later, the Times makes the melancholy confession that the amount of destitution now existing in London is greater than it was at the end of the last century.

Then the report says that it is utterly useless for the Board of Guardians to attempt to deal with this situation as ' it i= impotent to touch the roots of destitution.' That is, of course, the underpayment of labour. [DOT]

The next thing on the programme, however, is to look at the Bank Report. There we see the rewards of capital and there see that the average accumulation of profits is at the rate of twenty-one per cent. We can see no suffering on the part of capital.

At no time has capital suffered to any alarming extent. There should be some remedy. If this enormous profit can be obtained for capital, is there no way to obtain a little decent living for these destitute people, who should he rescued, who are willing to work and who cannot find employment? Is there no way of relieving this condition? Is it possible that in this twentieth century we are more concerned about the tariff, about politics and about procedure than 11 p.m. about life? Is there no man who has the intellect, the ability, the influence wibh the public and who represents the public, who will get up and, as Lloyd George is endeavouring to do in England, try to equalize the conditions of this country so that all men who have no capital but their labour and health, both somewhat uncertain, shall have a chance? I am not speaking in any sentimental strain. I am not discussing it in that way, I am talking about it as a matter of ordinary justice. This condition has continued for a long time and it can he done away with by the adoption of the minimum wage. All those who do not come within the scope of the minimum wage and steady employment will have to be taken care of under any system-it does not matter what. It is not those people that I am considering. I am considering the people who are well, strong and willing to work and yet can not find work, and who, if they do find work, have either to sacrifice their civilization or submit to underpayment. These are the things that concern us and it is for us to accept the burden of endeavouring to provide some solution. We seem to be at the very beginning of our civilization. If we could look upon a fairly contented people without being conscience stricken, if we could say that the psople who are not able to enjoy .the fruits of their toil are only the people who are not able to toil and who must be provided for by public munificence and perhaps by private charity, well and good, but to condemn so large a number of able a,nd willing men to all the risks and privations of non-employment, is to neglect the most important and fundamental part of our national existence.

I nave only now a few words to say about the disagreement between the free traders and the pseudo free traders. We know, for example, that capital thrives particularly upon inventions. We know that it is the patent rights that the great concerns own that are really the foundation of their prosperity and the life of their enterprise. If they had to give up their patents they

would be done for. Inventions are the source of a large proportion of the profits of industrial capital. But every time there is an invention, every time an invention is registered, it is just so much taken away from the workingman. That shows how tremendously in his legitimate sphere the workman is handicapped.

I have some letters here, one from local union No. 78 of the Brotherhood of Operative Potters, at St. Johns, Quebec. I had hoped that the hon. member for St. Johns and Iberville (Mr. Demers) would have been here to-night. I think he is not very well, but I know that he agrees with the request of these people that they shall be afforded protection against the underpaid labour of. England, the competition of which has compelled the works at St. Johns which makes white glazed ware far superior to the sort they make in England, to go out of business. There has been a lockout, not through any spirit of unfairness, but simply because this ware could be made cheaper in Staffordshire. The operation of the British preference has resulted in throwing out of employment these people who are nearly all old countrymen, principally Scotchmen. They say: Why did you not tell us that we would have to go back here to old country conditions and send our wives and daughters out to work? If you had, we would have stayed in the old country; but you told us that you protected your labour here. You do not, because we have had to go out of business. Here are these people who left the old country to avoid the degrading conditions existing there and gradually falling wages and came out here to improve their position, subjected to a lock-out. I have their own statement. It is not necessary to read it unless somebody challenges my statement, but the facts are there. These men paid their own way up here to present their ease. They say that they have been out of work for a long time, that they have no prospects, and they do not know what else they can work at. Are we to understand that we prefer the works of Staffordshire and Lancashire to our own works in this country? Are we to tell these men that they must send their wives and daughters out to work, and that they have to produce the same output and accept the same rate of pay as in Staffordshire? Are we to tell them that they have to go back to the old conditions or else remain out of work? That is the alternative. T have here the written 167

statement from these old countrymen in that regard. The writer set it out at great length. It is certainly convincing; it is absolutely and practically true. I also have a communication from the secretary of the Cobalt Miners' Union, in which he says:

The social unrest is so reat, so deep and the workers' economic condition growing worse so rapidly, we are afraid armed revolution will break out In several countries before long. Great Britain, Germany and the United States are drawing very close to the breaking point. Parliamentary action seems too slow, owing to constitutional and state restrictions. International capital has also completed its circle around the world. It will not be long before the cotton, oil and steel industries, etc., in China will, with their exploitation of cheap labour, become a real danger to our home industries.

He speaks of changed conditions even there. Foreign competition has had its effect even in Cobalt, and he says it is impossible, for him to maintain, without any waste or extravagance whatever, the ordinary common condition of a respectable workingman, as he has done in the past, although he has constant employment, because the prices have to come down owing to foreign competition.

I suppose that the Conservatives are to a certain extent to blame for the condition of unemployment in the industrial centres, because when they came into power they promised a development of the home market for the agriculturists, and the home market has developed so rapidly that it has over-developed and has thrown the country somewhat out of balance. The farmers found that the home market, the manufacturing centres, had developed so rapidly that they left the farms. The promise of the Conservatives has been carried out in a marvellous manner. It was denied that the home market would ever develop, but it has developed. These conditions must be to a certain extent equalized, and the Minister of Finance has begun that equalization by lowering the tariff on agricultural implements, something that our hon. friends opposite neglected to do.

Under free trade, cheapness is the great consideration. The only way in which the free trader can command the home market, let alone the foreign market, is by superior cheapness. Cheapness is the death of civilization; it is the ruin of the hopes of those people who would rise above the level of the beast. It is a false theory; the standard should be a true and proper level of economic living where not cheapness but having our own market would be the

rule. If we had our own market, and no other market in the world, in, a short time, with all our great natural advantages, we would have an ideal country to live in. Every industry would be balanced with every other; we would have plenty. This balance of industry is dislocated by such things as the British preference and the competition from abroad.

Apparently, we began at too high a standard, and we shall have to lower it. It will not be observed, perhaps, for some time, but it will ultimately be observed that if these conditions under the existing circumstances right themselves, it will be at the sacrifice o'f the life of the people. Something has to give way. If we are going to have the cheapness which will enable us to control the foreign market and the domestic market against general competition, it must be at somebody's expense; it must be at our own expense and it will be felt in the lowering of the life conditions of our people. It amazes me sometimes to hear the hon. member fox Red Deer (Mr. Clark) speak about the balance of trade, as if it did not make any difference at all whether or not you spent more money than you had. According to him, under free trade, if you did not get the money back, why, it was your own fault; that is to say, we could buy more abroad than we sold and, once the goods came in, we ought to be perfectly happy. That may satisfy him, but I do not think it will satisfy any one else who has given the subject any thought. You may analyse the matter as deeply as you like, but it is just as simple as the case of an ordinary man who spends more money than he makes and who has to draw on his natural resources or receive assistance from -somewhere. The consequences is that all we should be making of our immense natural resources- and advantages is going abroad in interest on capital, in the repayment of capital and in the paying for goods which we should manufacture in Canada. It is positively absurd to send money abroad; to borrow money from abroad and send it -abroad to pay for goods which we can manufacture in Canada, 'his condition could all be brought about by imposing a uniform rate of duty on everything and making it sufficiently high to be protective. I aim not in favour of what is called high protection and certainly not in favouT of unequalized protection, but I am in favour of that protection which will protect and keep us up to a

high level .and standard of excellence in our life and in our industries whether agricultural or mechanical.

The conditions in the country at the present time -are indicative of a slight slump. They are so in the United States, in M-ex-ico and in the various older countries, except perhaps in France, which, as we all know, is the most highly protected country in the world and which is -absolutely the richest and most prosperous of all countries. If we must point to examples -and certainly it is only from our experience that we can draw conclusions, unless we follow the everlasting mistake made by the free tr-ade theorist, who insists upon drawing his conclusions from a priori principles, and who believes that he is inspired by the knowledge of the true principles of Government and of economic life. Therefore he begins to draw his conclusions from his inspiration, and, though he runs up against all sorts of absurdities he simply continues to cry ' Freedom ! Freedom !3 as if every difficulty must be solved by that means. It is time to realize that this ancient theory of inspiration, of dogmatism, is long past and gone. Sensible people, scientific people, now observe and make use of their observations, drawing conclusions from what they see, not from what they have thought beforehand. This it is that justifies us in altering our position from time to time, whether it be with regard to protection or free trade, or living wage, or anything else. And so when conditions demand that we should put up the bars, we put them up, and we put them high enough to keep out a race that threatens our supremacy, or to keep out their goods which would stop our machines from working. We must consider what the conditions are and take our precautions accordingly. But for. the recognition of that principle, nothing modern would have been discovered, since it is by the same process of observation and reason, and the adaptation of means to ends, that all discoveries and inventions have been possible. Only in this way have the wonderful improvements been made in the industrial world-the development of such things as the air compressor, also the new gas engines driven by gas from the chimney tops of smelters and reduction works which formerly went to waste. Only by means of observation and effort to meet conditions were such things achievable. Formerly all these things were attributed merely to

freedom, and especially freedom of trade-* let that be the rule, it was said, and everything will be lovely. That old policy is played out, and if it is not played out, it is time it was, because its very friends are deserting it. I have here, but shall not read, the Monthly Notes of Tariff Reform in which are many amusing instances of declarations by free traders, that is by the present British Government, that they will provide for .all the anomalies that may arise from time to time by the violation of the free-trade principle. And so they will go stumbling along in the good old English way, trusting that things will turn out right in the end, as they did at the time of the Spanish Armada, when they did not know what was going to happen next. But the painful fact about all this is that its free trade triumphs lie in following the line of least resistance, and that line of least resistance is the under-paid labour of those who are compelled to sell their labour to live. This spells ruin for the labouring class, who then must be upheld by factory Acts, insurance Acts, old age pensions, and all sorts of contrivances and palliatives which are substituted for protection. True, in the United States they suffer also, but what they suffer from is not from a great national prosperity they ought to have but do not have, but from the inequalities of protection. We do not deny that causes of complaint arise under protection; protection may be misused, as everything else is likely to be misused if people hold to it long enough-it seems to me that nowadays it is better not to even lay your watch down, for somebody will steal it; there was a time when nobody thought of such a thing. But protection may be the triumph of one class over another as it is the triumph of one industrial system over another. These things must be provided for, they must be controlled by Governments. But do not let us confuse these things with the other issues we are discussing, namely, the inability of the man without capital to protect himself against the man with capital, under free trade.

On motion of Mr. Robb, the debate was adjourned.

On motion of Mr. Rogers, the House adjourned at 11.22 p.m.

Friday, April 17, 1914.

Topic:   QUESTIONS.
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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April 16, 1914