January 17, 1916

THE GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH.

ADDRESS IN REPLY.


The House proceeded to the consideration of the Speech of His Royal Highness the Governor General at the opening of the session. Mr. ALFRED THOMPSON (Yukon Territory) rose to move that an Address be presented to His Royal Highness the Governor General offering the humble thanks of this House to His Royal Highness for the gracious speech which he has been pleased to make to both Houses of Parliament. He said: Mr. Speaker, in rising to move the Address to be presented to His Royal Highness the Governor General, I would like to take the opportunity of thanking the Government for according to me this honour, an honour intended, I take it, not so much a personal one as an honour to the constituency which I have the privilege of representing, the farthest north and the farthest west constituency in this great Canada of ours. In common with my predecessors who have been appointed to this



office, I would invoke the grace and charity of the members in respect to my very imperfect address. Before proceeding further, Sir, permit me to congratulate you upon your elevation to the high office which you at present hold. You are successor to a long line of distinguished men, who have presided over this House with dignity and conducted the affairs with decorum. I was very much pleased the other day to hear the distinguished leader of the Opposition, and the no less distinguished Minister of Trade and Commerce, pay their tribute to those who had held the office which you now fill. They are two of our oldest statesmen, and their testimony as to the manner in which the debates in this House have been presided over by the various Speakers is a tribute indeed to our system of government. I congratulate you, Sir, as the first commoner of Canada. The proceedings connected with the opening of this House have always interested me. In the routine which we go through, there are many forms which have long since outlived their substance. For instance, that highly ornate and picturesque insignia -which is indispensable to the opening of our proceedings, the mace, has evidently, indeed obviously, its prototype in the chieftain's club; and our genial and amiable Sergeant-at-arms is, I have no doubt, the lineal descendant of the armour-bearer. Moving the address itself has always struck me as having something of the dramatic about it. I think it smacks of the stage. In fact, the function I am about to perform is very much a prelude to our national drama; it smacks of a curtain-raiser, if you will. The stage is set, the actors are all in their places, and our great national drama is about to begin once again. And what actors, Mr. Speaker, have appeared on this our national stage since our national life began ! What voices have these walls re-echoed, as the destiny of our country has been written by the various men who have sat on the treasury benches from time to time! I fancy that every inflection of the human voice has been heard within these walls during our national history. All honour to the men who have occupied these prominent positions, and all honour to-day to the two leaders of our national parties who are devoting their lives to the work of benefiting their country. These gentlemen'do not always see eye to eye, but I believe, and I think the House believes, that each one follows what he believes to be right, and acts according to the light as he sees it. The historian of the future will give each of these distinguished men his proper place in our temple of fame. I think it is particularly fortunate at this time we have the Duke of Connaught, the warrior statesman, as Governor General at Rideau Hall. He brings to his office the experience gained during a lifetime in the courts of Europe, in the military camps of the Empire, and at the council tables in Britain, in India, in Ireland, and for several years in Canada. His term of office here has been characterized by that prudence, foresight, and judgment which we all admire in our Governor General. The legislative programme for this session, judging from the speech from the Throne, is rather brief; but although brief it is none thd less important. The chief matter which we have to consider is the extension of our parliamentary term. For the first time since Confederation we have decided to pass an address asking the Imperial Parliament to extend the term of our Parliament. I hardly think, Sir, that the proposal needs any defence from any member of the Government, or from any one hr this House. The logic of events during the past year and a half is in itself sufficient to warrant our asking the Imperial Parliament to extend our term. The winning of the war, this great world-shaking war, is the overshadowing issue to-day in Canada, as well as in every other part of the British Empire; and, that being so, this Ministry must have an eye single to this great contest; they must be able to devote their energies to this great issue; and it is for the purpose of removing the possibility of an election in the interim between this and the next session of Parliament that an extension of our parliamentary term is desired. I say that this war is such an overshadowing and overwhelming issue that nothing else must be permitted to stand in the way. The Ministry must feel that they have the confidence of the people, and while I believe they have, and they believe they have, I think the time is opportune to give them an extension of their term. If there is any doubt in the mind of any member of the House, or any doubt in the rn'inds of the Ministers, I think that doubt should be removed. In a word, I think they should have absolute freedom of action in order to consecrate their energies to this great question of the war. The load which the Prime Minister and his colleagues have been carrying for the last year and a half has been a huge- load, and the people of Canada are looking to him and his colleagues to continue the [DOT]carrying of that load until the great victory is won. According to the consensus of opinion, this is going to be a war Of attrition involving a gradual reduction of men, resources, and money. It may be interesting to observe in passing how Canada has stood the awful strain. It is particularly interesting to% notice that in almost every department of industry in our country there has been an improvement during the first year of the war. We have had the greatest cereal crop in our history, so great that some people have called it a freak crop. In 1914, the year in which the war broke out, we produced 561,000,000 bushels of cereals, and in 1915 we produced 926,000,000 bushels, or an increase of 364,000,000 bushels of cereals in the first year of the war. _ Now, take the value of our cereal, root and fodder crops. In 1914 we produced $638,000,000 worth, whereas the total value of our roots, cereal and fodder crops in 1915 was $845,000,000, an increase of $207,000,000. We have good prices, we have good markets, and our grain is moving to these markets as it never did before. The north Atlantic is freed from the German raiders, British ships are carrying our grain to British ports, and the result is that the Canadian people are doing their full share to support our soldiers at the front and the British people at" home. Our mineral production increased somewhat in 1915 over 1914. The lumber trade in the east was a good deal better in 1915 than in 1914, and it is improving in the West. The only reason why it is not better there to-day than we find it is because dealers cannot get the means of transportation. The conditions surrounding our steel and iron trade are better than they were a year ago, orders are booked ahead, and altogether that important branch of our national industries is in a. very thriving condition. Our fisheries have had a good year, so good that the catch has not been equalled, I am informed, for many years. Altogether the wealth which comes from our great national resources seems to have come to us during the past year in an almost unprecedented superabundance. Added to this, our national revenues are responding to the magic touch of good times. Our domestic expenditures have been cut down without injuring our investments in our great public works. We have to-day throughout Canada comparatively few idle men. Our finances are in excellent shape. Institutions with very large sums invested in mortgage securities report that interest payments are better than they have been for some years past and because of the absence [DOT] of a normal demand for funds there is a considerable accumulation of ready money. Recently statements have been issued by the presidents of our leading banks, and in one and all we find a note of optimism. Our deposits are increasing, our circulation is up to its normal level, our railway earnings are going up, and the great investments which we have made in our national railways are bearing fruit. Credits which have been advanced to them by the federal and provincial Governments are being justified by results. The president of the Royal Bank, in addressing the shareholders the other day, made this important announcement : . The highly, creditable way in which Canada has stood the shock and strain o£ the war for seventeen months has justified the confidence expressed at our last meeting in her ability to weather the crisis. No better demonstration of her resourcefulness and economic stah'li'.y could he offered to the world. The moratorium acts in some provinces and the suspension of specie payments for hank and dominion notes were the only . departures from sound finance, and the latter was a "purely precautionary measure. It is truly wonderful to record during such a period of world upheaval that this country has experienced no financial disturbance, a very small increase in failures, and with one exception no permanent default by municipalities; furthermore, that the loan companies report" comparatively few arrears of interest on mortgage loans. As a result, the anxiety felt at the beginning of the war has been replaced by a spirit of relief and confidence. He further says: Having turned from a debtor to' a creditor nation under the force of urgent necessity, we should strive to make the turning permanent. We now know that we possess the essentials. The question is one of maintaining and increasing our exports by increasing production, and curtailing imports by economy in *consumption. The Federal Economic Commission appointed to study these and kindred questions should receive every possible assistance. He closes with this remarkable statement: After three years of liquidation and readjustment, our economic condition is basically sound, and we should try to keep it so. The Bank of Commerce, the Bank of Ottawa, and many of our other banks have issued similar statements, and altogether the financial aspect of our country, judging from the utterances of the presidents of these institutions, who are eminently in a



position to give ns authoritative information upon this subject, seems to be most encouraging, and it is apparent that we have reached the point at which it becomes apparent that good times are coming again. But perhaps a better test than even that is that we have converted a debit balance into a credit balance, that we have become a creditor nation instead of a debtor nation. In the year ended November 1, we sold $153,000,000 worth more than we bought, which I think is a startling fact in our economic history and development. Who would have thought a year ago that we would have been able to finance a domestic loan? Yet during the year our Government decided to make the attempt, and they ventured to ask for a $50,000,000 loan. There was some doubt expressed in the financial world as to whether the people of Canada would subscribe to a loan of that kind, but this doubt was set at rest very early, because, instead of $50,000,000 being subscribed, in a very few weeks the Government were in possession of $100,000,000 of Canadian money for our Government loan. That struck me as a remarkable incident in our economic development. You may remember, Mr. Speaker, that when the war broke out, this country was borrowing at the rate of $1,000,000 a day, and these borrowings were cut off just as if a tree had been cut off with the axe at its root. The stock exchanges of the world were closed down and no one knew what the collateral was, not even our bank men themselves. But Canada was fortunate in having a Minister of Finance who had the foresight and the courage of the present occupant of that high office to tide us over the financial difficulties of that time. The Government suspended gold payments, a risky thing to do; but they took the risk and they were justified in the results. They did more than that. They used the Government treasury as a rediscount bank for bank paper, and they were justified in the results. On that occasion you remember, Sir, and we all remember, that the financial superstructure of the whole world rocked upon its base, and we had a feeling at that time that Canada, a young country, in the early stages of its economic development, would suffer more than any other country as a result of that dire catastrophe, the declaration of war and its consequences, but in less than a year, Canada righted herself, confidence was restored, credit returned, and our trade balance was reversed. We raised $100,000,000 from our orvn people for the great war fund in addition to large sums for other patriotic funds. I consider it a magnificent record for Canada at this stage in our development. To apply the financial and economic test beyond the borders of Canada, let us see how Great Britain has stood the test of this great war, notwithstanding the fact that she is to-day financing so many of the . smaller nations of the world. You may issue a currency that will pass when it is restricted within the confines of the. country itself, but offer that currency beyond the borders of the country and you will immediately find out what its value is. Apply that test first to the value of the British pound as against the German mark on the New York fetock Exchange. The British pound has gradually increased until now it is very nearly at par value, while for many weeks the German mark has gradually decreased, and in a few weeks' time, if the decrease continues, the German mark on the New York Exchange will be worth just about fifty per cent of what its face value calls for, so that, taking the financial test, whether in Canada or in Great Britain, I feel that at the present time we have stood the test well. This war is a tremendous strain, the greatest strain this Empire has ever been called upon to bear, and I suppose the greatest strain it ever will be called upon to bear, but it is pleasing to note, after a year and a half of this contest, that our financial condition is so splendid. All this, Mr. Speaker, has been brought about because of this world-wide war, the greatest in the history of the world; but we all like to think in connection with it that we have done our little share; and, taking, not what our own people say we have done, but what others outside of this country say we have dpne, we need not be ashamed. Our Canadian boys in Flanders have carved out for themselves names in the halls of immortality by their bravery, and their dash, and their intelligent initiative. They have made the name of Canada immortal, as well by laying down their lives and making the supreme sacrifice for the great principles for which we are fighting. We little thought that we could raise such an army as we have done in so short a time, and it is a source of great pride to me, as I know it must be to every member of this House, to feel that the boys from the factories, and the banks, and the farms, and the forests, and the fisheries, after only a very few months of training, went to the very front rank of the battle line and stood, shoulder to shoulder with the Allied veterans and fought victoriously against the veteran legions of Germany and her confederates. The record of St. Julien and Neuve Chapelle and Loos, and many another stricken field will always be to the credit of Canada and her soldiers. I never see the boys passing through Ottawa after being reviewed by the Governor General or the Minister pf Militia but I feel that the name of Canada is safe on ever shoulder that bears it. From a country of peace we suddenly became a country of war; from a country without an army we suddenly raised an army of thirty thousand men. This army was increased to fifty thousand, then to a hundred thousand, and then to a hundred and fifty thousand. We authorized the raising of a quarter of a million men, and another quarter of a million -is about to be raised, a wonderful exploit for such a country as Canada. Comparisons between what one province has done and what another province has done are odious; 1 do not wish to follow the statistics in regard to that. I just want to say, in a general way, that I am particularly proud of the western provinces between the' lakes and the mountains, because they have furnished so many splendid regiments to fight alongside of their brothers from the eastern provinces in this great cause. I feel that the faith of our fathers in that vast country is well justified by the results of today, when we consider that a few short years ago, while we had the eastern provinces as the basis of Confederation, the plains west of the lakes were barren, the home of the buffalo and the Indian, with only a few white people beyond the mountain ranges on the Pacific coast. The buffalo trail has given place to the railway, the Indian wigwam to the home of the settler, and to-day great commonwealths have been carved out of those prairies. As a result, when the empire called for assistance, those prairie provinces sent forth their sons in great numbers to fight in this great cause. The province of British Columbia, which a few short years ago was, as someone said, a sea of mountains ^without enough white people to raise a Tegiment, hast raised a division. The territory I represent, although its population is small, has done its little share; and as time goes on more men will be sent on from there and from the western provinces. The whole of Canada has done well and will do better as time goes on and more men are needed, because our boys are all fighting for the cause we believe in; they are all fighting that the flag which flies above this building shall continue to wave over this vast country of ours. In regard to the fortunes of the war, we have had our setbacks and disappointments as well as our victories. If we have had Gallipoli, we have also had the Marne, If we have lost Serbia, we have saved the old capital of the Thessalonians, and Saton-iki is to-day a great fortress on the Aegean sea, which we trust will yet be of some use in carrying on this war. If we have failed at Bagdad, we have saved Calais, the Gibraltar .of the North sea. A ring of steel surrounds our enemy on land and sea, from the Baltic to the Black sea, and from Dixmude to Switzerland. The allied fleet keeps watch and ward from the Skagerrack to the Persian gulf. The Black sea, the Mediterranean sea, the North sea, all the inland seas of Europe, are in the hands of the Allies, except a small portion of the Baltic. More than that, the oceans of the earth are open to us but not to our enemies. We have had misfortunes in this war, but let us not be discouraged. History tells us that we have had misfortunes in other wars. When the great Duke of Maarl-borough was in the very midst of his, glorious career, he iwas menaced behind his back by hostile intrigues due to dynastic and party politics; yet he fought great battles and won great victories for the empire. Sirs John Moore was attacked for his retreat on Corunna; yet his advance as well as his retreat disarranged Napoleon's plans. The embarkation at 'Corunna did not end in our defeat in the Peninsular war, nor will the evacuation of Gallipoli end in our defeat in this war. During this war many generals have been changed, but in other wars other generals were changed. Wellington, himself at the battle of Vimeiro was superseded by two British generals; He was forced to sign the convention of Cintra, and he was afterwards tried before a parliamentary committee. Yet Wellington fought the marshals of the great Napoleon one after the other and was finally successful over Napoleon himself at Waterloo. Every one knows what a muddle the Crimean war was; even the Boer war was notable for many unfortunate events; but we were not dismayed. We are not dismayed now. History gives us warnings; but it gives us encouragement as well, and we shall be lacking in the wisdom which comes from experience iO



df we do not take advantage of 'both. Let .-us not be dismayed: this war has not been won yet; but the empire remains solid, and our armies are undaunted, and we will fight on until victory -is ours.- In this war we are fighting because it is a war of principles, and we believe in the principles that the Allies are fighting for. There are two principles which underlie our Government which are very dear to the people who live under this flag. One is that the primary sovereign power of the state lies in the people, and the second is that no tax shall be taken from any section of these people without the consent of the people themselves. Mr. Speaker, neither of these principles has been lightly won; they have cost much blood and much treasure. It took centuries to bring them to their fulfilment under our governmental institutions. But they are ours. It is only within the last one hundred and fifty years that the second of these principles was firmly planted as a part of the British constitution. It was only after the thirteen New England colonies had become the United States of America that the principle "No taxation without representation" became a part of the British constitution. Search the records of mankind, from the caves of prehistoric man to the pyramids and obelisks of Egypt, down through the centuries, and you will find in these records one continuous story of government by one man or by a few men, hut never do you find a record of government by the whole people. The British people were the first among the peoples of the earth to evolve the idea that the power of the state resided in the people themselves. We had republics in ancient times: the cities of Greece were republics, but they were not democracies. Borne was a republic, but not a democracy. And Bonle, at Caesar's death, became an empire. And all the countries that are warring to-day in Europe were within that empire, except parts of Bussia. The Bornan Empire became so great that it required two emperors and two capitals, one at Borne and one at Constantinople. After a varied history both these capitals fell and the Bom an Empire was dissolved; and from the fragments of that great empire were erected the world-states of Europe. But of all those world-states, the British people were the one people to evolve the idea of representative governmental institutions. They planted colonies, and the colonists took the same idea with them. To-day, belting this globe, are the colonies and dominions of Great Britain, and the underlying principle in the government of each: Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, is, that the people are supreme. We are fighting for this principle; we are fighting because we believe that right is more powerful than might, that the moral sense of a nation is but the aggregate of the moral sense of the individuals of that nation, and that the same moral law which our state expects its citizens to observe shall not be transgressed by the state itself, that there is the same law for the state that there is for the citizen. We do not. subscribe to the doctrine that the state is a law- unto itself. Why are we fighting? Because we are a part of the British Empire, and because the Empire as a whole is threatened. Do the people of Canada realize what would happen if the British navy were defeated to-night? Do they realize that they would have to think and think quickly? One of the Boman Emperors, when Borne was at its zenith, said that the people who drank of the Orontes and the Bhone were the same people both belonging to the Boman Empire. The distance between the St. John and the Yukon is vastly greater than the distance between the Orontes and the Bhone, yet we are still the same people. The possibilities of this part of our Empire are wonderful. I was travelling once with Sir Charles Tupper, of revered memory, and I asked him what he thought of our western provinces, and he answered, " My boy, I believe they are to be the home of the race." Bryce, in The American Commonwealth, says that the quadrangle bounded by Hudson's Bay, the Gulf of Mexico, the Alleghenies and the Bocky Mountains is to be the future home of the race. And, judging by the intensive way in which farming is carried on in the older states of Europe, the possibilities of these western provinces of ours as the home of the people of the future, are enormous, for, with our wealth of forest, farm, fisheries and mines, it Is possible for a huge population to live within this great Canada of ours. We are fighting not only for these principles which I have enunciated, but also *because we abhor the method of warfare which our enemies pursue. Their philosophers and historians have taught them to make war more terrible by the torch, the gibbet and the misuse of the sword. Our civilization abhors that. I was much struck by the speech recently made by Mr. Mastennan, a member of the British *Government at the time of the outbreak of hostilities, as to the reason why Britain .is now at war. He-said: I do not suppose that any body of men ever passed through six such days as we did, sitting continuously with telegrams pouring in from every capital in Europe, and with the clock ticking out the hours, not the days, which re-nnained if peace and civilization were to be continued in the world. During every one of those days there was no thought in the mind of any one of us but that of. endeavouring to preserve the peace of the world. We tried this and that, we offered conditions, we asked for conferences, and we pleaded for time, but everything was refused us until Anally we were left with this choice-the security or the destruction of the honour of our country. ... It is not the interest of England that led us into this war, it was the honour of England. That is why we are fighting to-day; and that is why we .shall fight to-morrow, and fight on until, as the Prime Minister has said: Belgium has received all and more than all for what she has suffered and all the world will know for all future time that when England makes a promise she keeps it. Why are we fighting to-day? We have four million men raised by voluntary enlistment in the British Isles; Canada with two hundred thousand under arms, fifty thousand more getting ready to go, and two hundred and fifty. thousand more to be enlisted, and every province, city, town, hamlet and countryside contributing its quota. From Cape Breton to the Yukon men have answered the call, and men will come as men are needed. From the island continent of Australia and from New Zealand, what a magnificent response. . It is not the fault of our Australasian brothers that the Gallipoli invasion failed. They fought like heroes and the legend of Suvla Bay and Anzac will be emblazoned on their banners for their children to see as synonyms of personal bravery. Is it not an inspiring sight to see the various races coming from the different countries in ships that plough all the seven seas converging upon the home -of the Aryan race in Europe to settle this greaJt question of principles? There must be some underlying reason for this magnificent spectacle of the people of England, of Ireland, of Scotland, *of South Africa, of New Zealand, of Australia of Canada fighting side by side in this war. The Maoris of New Zealand, the Indians of our own country, the natives of India, the Soudanese, all take their part. Was there ever such a unanimity of will in any nation or empire in the world's- history? Never. Why do a'll religious denominations join with united voices in support of this war? The Mahommedans, the Hindus, the Sikhs, the Parsees, the Buddhists, join with the Presbyterians, the Methodists, the Anglicans, the Baptists, the Roman Catholics, the Greek Catholics, and all other Christian communities. Why did the head of the Methodist church telegraph our Prime Minister congratulating him on offering to raise another quarter of a million men? I will answer that question by quoting the words of the head of the Roman Catholic church in Montreal, Archbishop Bruchesi. Speaking to the students of Laval, the Archbishop said: Canada being a part of the British Empire, it is the sacred duty of the Canadian people to assist Great Britain in her heroic defence of liberty. ... It is the solemn duty of every Canadian citizen to the utmost limit of his force, to stand side by side with the motherland in her heroic effort to crush the tyrant who wishes to trample small nations and states beneath his iron heel. What fate would be ours if the Germans obtained a foothold here? Were Great Britain defeated, Germany would secure domination on the St. Lawrence. I, for one,-do not want to be a German citizen. Why is it that this vast concourse of men of so many different races, religions, and climes are going to the front to take pait in this struggle and are willing to make, and are making the supreme sacrifice? Why? Because they live under the flag that floats over Parliament Hill. And they have found that wherever that flag waves, there you will find liberty for the individual, security for his, life, and safety for his property; there you will find freedom of thought, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of the press; there you will find the greatest possible freedom compatible with security of the state. And there you will find a state based upon the eternal principles ' of freedom, justice, and toleration.


CON

Eugène Paquet

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. EUGENE PAQUET (L'Islet) (translation) :

Mr. Speaker, it is my great

privilege to second the motion which has been put before you so eloquently by the hon. member for the Yukon (Mr. Thompson). The honour redounds especially to the electors of the beautiful county of l'Islet, and my most heartfelt thanks go to the right honourable the Prime Minister.

In seconding the motion for an Address in reply to the speech of His Royal Highness, it is my object to rise above partisan considerations, and let myself be prompted by the truly Canadian sentiment of rallying

every member of this House, every citizen of this country, every race, every effort and every sacrifice, to the sacred cause of the safeguarding our national existence.

At the front, our gallant boys are upholding that sacred cause and giving up everything for their country's safety. We, ourselves, must be guided by the same ideals in the consideration of the measures to be laid before us with a view to secure the participation of Canada in the defence of the Empire.

On the floor of this House my hon. friend from the Yukon has expressed himself in his native tongue. I am fortunate in being able to address ^ou in the language of ancestors who lived in the fields and sunny hillsides of France. In so calling your attention to that fact, I wish to point out one of the remarkable qualities of the magnificent Empire which is ours, and acknowledge the freedom we are privileged to enjoy. His Royal Highness has stated:

Measures will be submitted for your consideration to further the effective co-operation of Canada in the defence of the Empire and in the maintenance of this war waged for liner! y and lasting peace.

The response my fellow-members will make, and that, I doubt not, of the Canadian people, must be summarized in the following words of Canada's Prime Minister :

(Text.) More than a twelve month ago our Empire consecrated all its powers and its supreme endeavor to a great purpose which concerns the liberties of the world and the destinies of all the nations.

In tbe dawn of another year our hearts are more resolute than ever to accomplish that task, however formidable it may prove. By the greatness of the need our future efforts must be measured.

Nowhere is the Canadian spirit more firm and unwavering than among the men who hold the trenches and those who will shortly stand by their side; nowhere is it more undaunted than in the hospitals and convalescent homes.

Already we have learned the full meaning of sacrifice. To all Canadian homes that have been saddened, to all Canadian hearts that have been stricken by the tragedy of this war, we pray that Divine blessing may bring consolation and healing.

Much had to be learned during the past fifteen months because we had not prepared for this war. The sttrongesi assurance of ultimate victory lies in the fact that we were not crushed in learning that hard lesson. Those who forced this war upon as may be assured by the traditions of our past that the lesson will be ' thoroughly learned to the end that there shall he enduring peace. The very character and greatness of the ideals for which we are fighting forbid us to pause until their triumph is fully assured."

In Canada, as in all allied countries, there is apparently a determination to hold fast, to suffer and to win. Sir William \\ hite, the Minister of Finance, who has just been knighted by His Majesty, will urge upon the Canadians new sacrifices for the cause of civilization and freedom, for humanity and our country's sake.

Our desire and determination to win must be persisted in. Otherwise the sufferings of our dead and our wounded would have been in vain. To allow ourselves to hesitate a single instant would amount to ingratitude towards our dead soldiers and treason against our descendants.

In 1912 and 1913, members of the House and certain newspapers scoffed at the idea of a German menace* and ridiculed those who dared mention it. On the 5th of December, 1912, the Prime Minister of Canada, after studying the situation in England with three of his colleagues, and after having been put in possession of state secrets he could not divulge, exclaimed in the House of Commons: "The need is

urgent."

The Prime Minister heard then the rumbling of the distant thunder and saw the lightning flashes above the horizon. Sir R. L. Borden further declared:

The burden is so great that the day has come when either the existence of this Empire will be imperilled or the young and mighty dominions must join with the Motherland to make secure the common safety and the common heritage of all."

With the German peril so clearly shown by Canada's Prime Minister, my only duty lay in giving my support to a Government who took means to secure the safety of the Motherland, while at the same time safeguarding our country's autonomy.

In view of the German -aitrooities-, lais I learned about the shooting of priests and the burning and destruction of churches, and shuddered -at the awful blood orgies amid the most inhuman crimes, will I be blamed for having listened to the Prime Minister's call, as he pointed out the danger?

It would have been treasonable on my part to refuse my support to the Government when it requested of me sacrifices to help maintain peace between the civilized nations.

I have always claimed that it was Canada's duty to defend its own territory and its own liberties. Since the beginning of the war, the country's integrity is imperilled. Shall we wait to see the enemy on our shores? Shall we wait to see the Germans tread Canadian soil?

Before taking up arms would you wait to see the Prussian slaughter your children, ravish your mothers and shoot down your priests? Treason it would be, and I refuse to be a traitor to my country.

It has been left to these times to witness a whole nation, a huge nation, stand up to Heaven and exclaim: I alone, I alone; I

am above all nations.

_ Th.ough Belgium's land, in shameful violation of that country's neutrality, William's army had invaded French soil and in forced marches was pushing towards Paris, its objective. Convinced of their invincible superiority, their hordes hurled themselves against the allied forces with a supreme confidence born of the recollections of Sadowa and Sedan. But the battle of the Marne checked, and repulsed the onset of the German army. Not England it was that desired war. His Majesty George V and his ministers made the moist worthy efforts to preserve peace, but they could not agree to the dishonourable proposals of William II, who was violating Belgium's neutrality, spurning thereby the treaty obligations entered into by his predecessor. The Motherland has engaged'in the most terrible war the world has ever seen for the purpose of avenging Belgium, of maintaining solemn obligations and in defence of the world's liberties.

The Prussian incentive is a determination to dominate the whole world and crush it under an economical and political tyranny not to be soon shaken off. To that end, the Prussian barons are determined to use the force of arms without being deterred by formal obligations, solemn treaties and by international principles observed through centuries. Their victory would mean the defeat of civilization and the triumph of cynical brutality. Should Germany come out of this conflict victorious, how could she be prevented from putting under her tyrannous domination our own country, the most brilliant jewel in the British crown.

What would become of Canada with Germany master of the world and in a position to dictate her own terms? What of Canada's future unless France and our Motherland did raise over Germany the sword of justice?

Who can say?

Listen to the words uttered at Vancouver on the 15tli of August, 1915, by the honourable the Postmaster-General:

(Text.) It is a war in which we are deeply-interested. It is as much Canada's war as England's war. It is your fight, it is my fight, it is the fight of every free citizen of this country, and let me again repeat that, speaking to you as one of the Ministers of the Crown. I have this message to give to you: We will

leave no effort untried, no resource untouched, no nerve unstrained, before we have done the very utmost in this struggle in which the life of the Empire and the liberty and free Insti-tions of Canada are at stake. Then only will our task be accomplished.

(Text.) It is our duty, more pressing iron us than all other duties, at once, on this first day of this extraordinary session of the Canadian Parliament, to let Great Britain know, and to let the friends and foes of Great Britain know-, that there is in Canada but one mind and one heart, and that all Canadians stand behind the mother country, conscious and proud that she has engaged in this war, not from any selfish motive, for any purpose of aggrandisement, but to maintain untarnished the honour of her name, to fulfil her obligations to her * allies, Jo maintain her treaty obligations, and to save civilization from the unbridled lust of conquest and domination.

The Canadian people have been consulted in the most solemn manner. The call to the colours has assembled from the Atlantic to the Pacific 240,000 sons of Canada, full of patriotism and firmly convinced that they were fulfilling a national duty.

Without compulsion, our brethren take part- in the conflict in order to ensure its victorious issue, and to secure the maintenance and unity of the British Empire, which Empire they feel sure shelters and safeguards Canada's autonomy.

With all of you, I pay my tribute to our fallen heroes. The Canadians who were killed on the battlefields of Saint-Eloi, Langemark and Festubert have' won undying fame. They have given their blood to become our saviours.

In the province of Quebec, church and state are united in their support of the Allies' cause. We have heard the noble words uttered by the political leaders of French origin. You have all witnessed the noteworthy stand taken by our bishops. They assembled and prepared a most cordial endorsation of the attitude of England and France.

Hear now what -says the episcopacy of the province of Quebec:

It cannot be ignored that this conflict, one of the most terrible it has ever been given the world to witness, cannot fail to have its repercussion in our own country. Great Britain is involved and who can deny .that the fate of all parts of the Empire is bound in the issue of its struggle?

Rightly Great Britain looks to our help and that help, we are glad to say, has been generously offered in both men and money.

Air. Speaker, I have the honour to second the motion, dn favour of the address.

Topic:   THE GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH.
Subtopic:   ADDRESS IN REPLY.
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LIB

Wilfrid Laurier (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Liberal

Rt. Hon. Sir WILFRID LAURIER:

Mr. Speaker, all those present in this Chamber must certainly have appreciated the tone and style of the addresses to which it has been their pleasure to listen this afternoon.. The speech of my hon. friend from Yukon (Air. Thompson) certainly reached a high level of patriotic eloquence. The matter contained in those addresses, if I may say so without being invidious, calls for some observations, which, however, I shall forego for the present, as they may be dealt with more fittingly when we come to discuss the two or three measures which are announced in the speech of His Royal Highness the Governor General.

11 wish, at the outset, to emphasize the thanks and gratitude we owe to Providence for the bountiful harvest with which we have been blessed this year. The farmer, like all other workers, has to depend chiefly upon his own exertions; but, more than any other worker, has he to depend upon the elements. A little more rain or a little less rain, a little more sunshine or a little less sunshine, may to him mean the difference between disaster and success. This year it would seem that the elements have been particularly favourable; it would seem that the farmer held the key to the winds and the clouds, and obtained exactly the measure that he desired. It would seem, too, as if kind Providence, in order to atone for man's inhumanity to man, designed to compensate the farmer for that loss which he has had to suffer through being denied that profitable market which he has long sought in vain from this Government.

The bountiful harvest lias been an offset for sore disappointment in every direction. We meet again under the shadow of the disastrous war in which we have been engaged for something like eighteen months a shadow which seems to be darker now than it was in the month of April last, when Parliament prorogued. At that time our souls were full of hope that the campaign just then opening would see the advance of the allied forces upon the territory of the enemy. No one expected that in the year 1915 we would see the end of the war, but all expected that we would see the beginning of the end. All these hopes were doomed to disappointment; we are bound to say that our expectations, high as they were, have been sadly unfulfilled. Gn the western front the conditions are

exactly the same as they were in the month of April last. Though we may . say with pride that the allied forces have won notable victories-victories in which our Canadian boys, young as they were, fought like veterans-on some occasions saved the day -and filled Canadian hearts with legitimate pride; still we must admit-and we know only too well that it is true-that the Allies have failed to pierce the line of the enemy and to commence their march towards the Rhine. On the eastern fronts our disappointments have been greater. There our Russian allies have lost positions which they at first attained. They . have lost Galicia and Poland; their soil was invaded by the enemy, and similar fears were held for Petrograd as were held in the early stages of the war for Paris. In the Balkans there was a noble resistance to the advance of the enemy, but no victory. Though in these circumstances there are causes for disappointment, there is no cause for alarm or discouragement, for this reason: the successes and victories of the German, army have never been complete victories; they have been merely Pyrrhic victories, and there are signs not a few that both in morale and numbers the strength of the German forces, as compared with that of the allied forces, is decreasing day bv day, and that in the not distant future the Allies shall at last be able to assume the offensive.

The only complete victory which has been won during the war has been won by the British navy. It is true that there has been no general engagement; but as regards what has been accomplished and is being accomplished every day by the British navy, I recall the words of the soldiers of Napoleon in the campaign of 1805, who used to say that their Emperor won battles without fighting and simply by marches and counter-marches. In the same way Admiral Jellicoe has been able to accomplish victories without any engagement and simply' by patrols and by watches he has succeeded in keeping the German fleet isolated, impotent, imprisoned in its own waters; just as useless for the German cause as if it had been sent to the bottom of the sea. The British navy has kept the sea open to the trade of the Allies almost as effectively as in the times of peace. If, as is suggested in the speech from the Throne, more sacrifices will be required in order that we may reach complete and final vidtory, it may be well that we should assert again, at the opening of this session, the attitude which

we on both sides of the House have maintained and the attitude which we on this side of the House do intend to maintain. When the war broke out, both parties in this House agreed that it was the duty of the Canadian people to participate in the war to the fulness of our resources. That decision, made on the floor of this Parliament by both sides of the House, was unanimously ratified by the Canadian people.' No, I must make an' exception to that. The ratification was not unanimous. There has been a minority which has always protested against our attitude, and that minority is the Nationalist party in the province of Quebec,, who took the position from the start that it was a crime for the Canadian people to participate in this war. Not only did they use that strong language, but again and again in the Nationalist press they have asserted, and still assert, that we have taken our present position simply because we bow, servilely bow to the imperious dictation of the British authorities.

Sir, I hold no brief for the Government; but I have been fifteen years in office and I know the nature of the relations between the Imperial authorities and the Canadian authorities, and I say that there is no foundation for -such an assertion-and I know whereof I speak. I know that I -speak the truth. I know that I speak nothing bu-t what is common intelligence to any man who knows the institutions under which we live when I say that there was on the part of the British authorities no command, no demand, no request. The offer of the Government was -spontaneous, the ratification of the Parliament of Canada was deliberate. What we have done we have done in the full power of our legislative independence under the constitution which we hold from the British Parliament. What we have don-e we have done deliberately, voluntarily, not from any -sentiment of compulsion, but because we thought that, as British subjects, as men who had been enjoying and still enjoyed, the benefit of British freedom, we owed it -to ourselves to make sacrifice of our treasure, and of our blood, in order to maintain British institutions and freedom in the world. Such is the -spirit of, British institutions, such is the lofty character of the constitution under which we live, -that not even the King of England, not even the Parliament of England has the right -to order a single soldier to go out of Canada, or to -take a dollar

from the treasury of Canada. We -are a free people, and I am sure -that I express the sentiments of all Canadians worthy of the name when I say, that it is as free men that we have gone into this conflict and are continuing in it. It is not, however, to be supposed, that in coming to this conclusion on the floor of this Parliament, we were all impelled by the same motives.

Seldom, if ever, in any deliberate assembly, when a.decision has to be reached upon any important question, is t'he problem approached from the same point of view by all the members of -that assembly and a decision reached from the same standard. On this very question of our participation in the wars of Great Britain there has been between my right hon. friend on the other side and myself a line of cleavage. My right iho.n. friend has often a-sserted that the moment Great Britain was at war it was the duty of the Canadian people not only -to defend their territory if attacked

and that goes without saying-but to send our forces wherever Britain wa-s called upon to fight; whereas I have always taken the position that in such circumstances it was for the Canadian Parliament to decide whether or not Canada would participate and the extent of -her participation. I have claimed for the Canadian Parliament the same rights absolutely as those which exist in the Parliament of the Motherland. If to-day I recall this line of cleavage it is not for the purpose of -resurrecting a discussion on it- this is not the time nor the occasion for that, although the time and the occasion may com-e when the Canadian Parliament may have to decide that question one way or the other-but Sir, if to-day I recall this line of cleavage it is to show the inanity of the reproach of servility which is levelled at us in my own native province. Servility is a big word, it is a loud sounding expression; but there may be servility and servility. There may be and often is servility to a master; there may be and there is servility to passion and prejudice. And if to-day there is servility anywhere it is not with those who have taken the attitude which we have maintained, and will maintain in this House, bpt it is with those who, blinded by passion and prejudice, would deny us, the liberty of being humane and generous, would deny us the liberty of following the instincts and the" promptings of our minds, and our hearts, and our consciences; would deny us the liberty, when we see France threatened with dismemberment, when we

see Belgium actually under the foot, of the conqueror, of helping in the defence of France and of Belgium. It is not because they hate France, it is not because they hate Belgium, but because we cannot in this way help France or help Belgium without at the same time helping England. Sir, the case of France and the case of Belgium is the case of England. The case of England is the case of Belgium and of France. Away with such sophistry. It is nothing but an attempt to conceal the aridity of empty hearts. But, that is not all. These men also tell us that we may be fighting foT an idea, as they say, and we may be fighting for the fate of the Empire, as they say, but that Canada has no direct or material interest in this war. And, every day we read in their press that if Germany were to triumph it would be of no material injury to Canada', that Canada would remain just in the position that Canada is in to-day. Canada, no interest in this war! Sir, I take a very different attitude; I take issue with that statement, and I not only assert that Canada has a direct interest in this war, but I go much further and I say that there is not to-day a civilized nation in the world which has not an interest in this war. Should Germany triumph there would be nations that would rue the day of their indifference and supineness. After all, what is Germany fighting for? For what has she deluged with blood the continent of Europe? Is it not, as has often been stated, for the purpose of world domination? The book published by the French Government on this point some months ago is most instructive. It contains a memorandum of the German staff of date March, 1913, in which it is avowed in so many words that the object of Germany is to dominate the whole civilized world. I may not quote at length, but let me quote just this one sentence which I translate from the French: ~

Neithsr the ridiculous howlings of the French Chauvinists for revenge nor the gnashing of teeth of the Eng'.ish nor the feverish antics of the Slavs shall deter us from our aim wh'ch is to fort'fy and exterd D utschsthum (which means German domination) ever the whole world.

And on top of that there is in the book another despatch from the French Ambassador at Berlin, M. Gambon, which further illustrates what I have just stated. M. Cambon, on November 13, writes to his Government in these words: I

I hava from an absolutely reliable source the tenor of a conversation which the Emperor had with the King of Belgium in presence of the

chief of staff, General Mol;ke, about two weeks ago, a conversation which as it would seem vividly s-t. u k King A bert.

Nor am I surprised at h's impression for it corresponds to that which has been for some* time forcing itself on me, viz., hostility against us is becoming more deeply accentuated and the Emperor has ceased to he favourable to peace.

The interloouter of the Emperor of Germany, as everybody els-*, up to that time had believed that William IT, whose personal influence had at several critical periods, been thrown on the' side of peace wis s ill of the sam? mind. This time he found h m completely changed.

In the course of that conversation the Emperor seemed nervous and irritable.

The weight of advancing years is commencing to tell upon William II, and the traditions of his family, the retrograde sentiments of the-Court, and above all the rest'essness of the mil tarists, mere deeply affect his mind.

Perhaps also he frets at the growing popularity of his son, who caters to the passions of the pan-Germanists, and does believe that the situation of the empire in the world is not equal to its power.

If I were to conclude I would say that we must be prepared for this new fact, that the Emperor is being reconciled to a conception off things which was previously repugnant to him.

There is the origin of the war. The military party at last prevailed upon the Emperor, and thus the world was plunged into that awful catastrophe. What would be the consequences of a German defeat? If the Germans are defeated the world may look for an era of peace, or disarmament, and of an approach to the ideal condition, the brotherhood of man. But what if Ger

many were to win? Germany cannot have a complete victory-as to that, it seems to me there cannot be a shadow of doubt. To' triumph, Germany has to crush England, to' crush France, to crush Russia and to crush Italy, and that is an impossible task. The only problem in my mind is as to the extent of our victory. If we had only half a victory, then Germany would be humiliated, but would still be defiant. She would continue her armaments, and then the other nations would have to follow suit. She would be preparing' and arming, and even on this continent, Sir, we would not escape the vortex of European militarism. This, therefore, is'our interest in the war; this is the justification of our course. Our action has not been based upon the sophistry which we have heard in the Nationalist press; our action has been based upon the primary condition that we must be free, or that we must lose o-ur freedom. Upon that our choice has been made.

The speech from the Throne announces that we shall have measures to enable the Government to carry on the war. My right

lion. friend the Prime Minister has the first day of this year issued a 'statement that he was prepared to offer 500,000 men. I shall not to-day discuss whether or not the premature statement of my right hon. friend was exactly on the lines of parliamentary government. I put aside all these questions on such a day as this. I understand that we shall have a statement made upon the offer of 500,000 men, which it seems to me is a large contract, but, again, upon this I pass no judgment. I shall be prepared, and my friends around me will be prepared to listen to, and to discuss in the spirit in which all such propositions should be discussed, the proposition which the Government deems essential to carry on' the fight in which we are engaged. But let me say-and I believe that upon this we should have an expression of opinion-that we must repel at once the impression which has been sought to be created that this offer is a preliminary step to conscription. There is to be no conscription in Canada. Sir, there has been an attempt made for many years to frighten the -people with the spectre of conscription. There are some men in this House, as you know, who in the elections of 1911 stated that the enactment, of the naval law was a prelude to conscription. There are men in the province of Quebec who have been asserting that the moment conscription Was adopted in Great Britain, conscription would be adopted or proposed in Canada. The naval law has been for six years on the statute book. It is still there; it has not been repealed, as many members in this House were pledged to repeal it. It is there, and there is yet no conscription. Conscription has come in England, but conscription is not to come in Canada. So far as conscription in England is concerned, it would be in bad taste, nay, it would be impertinent for us to attempt to pass any remarks, either of approval or 'of disapproval ' With regard to it. For my own part I am free to say that I expected that Great Britain would be able to carry on this stupendous war under her old system of voluntary enlistment. The British Government have thought otherwise; they have thought that the magnitude, the stupendous magnitude of the war we have to face, compelled them to resort to conscription, and the step taken by the government seems to meet with the approval of the great majority of the English people. But, Sir, 21

the conditions are not the same in Canada as in Great Britain. The reasons why there can be no conscription in Canada are obvious. Apart from any other, one paramount reason, which is on top of all1 the others, is that we could not adopt conscription in Canada without giving a severe blow ;to our policy of immigration. If we are, to pass successfully through the period which' is to follow the war, and face the enormous debt which we are accumulating, the enormous expenditure which We are assuming, the best way to do it is to have a wise and broad policy of immigration so as to develop our resources. But if it were to be known that conscription existed in Canada, it would, I repeat, deal a severe blow to our hopes in that respect. Why, the very thought of conscription, has had a detrimental effect on our settlements in the Northwest.

My attention has been called to a letter published in the New York American of December 26, in which the following statement from a correspondent in Omaha appears :

Five or six years ago a hundred thousand of Iowa and Nebraska's finest young farmers broke away from their homes and went into Western Canada to take up homesteads and make their fortunes.

And now these same young men are simply falling over themselves to get back to the old farms in the American west. Hundreds of them are passing through Omaha every week. Some walked across the border-sneaked their way across, in fact, because they feared they, would not be permitted to leave Canada.

Others purchased round-trip railroad tickets and showed the return portion as proof that they were going into the " States " on a visit only. Some had a little cash when the time came for them to get out of the Dominion, but others were forced to write hack to the "old folks " for money with which to pay their way' back to the old farm. They are all fleeing from threatened conscription.

When I read that I took some measures to obtain confirmation or information regarding it. I .must say that my information, while not complete, 'has satisfied me that the statement is very much exaggerated. That there is some foundation for it I believe, but I do not think the movement has assumed such proportions as are 'here indicated. At all events, there is enough to show that it is important that we should have at once from my right hon. friend the Prime Minister an authoritative statement upon this point.

But, Sir, while the bogey of conscription can be easily disposed of, the same cannot be said of the financial consequences which

must follow this war. We are piling up expenditures and debts which would be alarming were it not for the wonderful resources of this country. Wonderful and varied as the resources of this country are, there is still every necessity for the wisest and most rigid economy in every branch of the service, and in this connection I have some fault to find with my hon. friend the Minister of Finance (Sir Thomas White) for the estimates which he brought down last year. I say to him to-day that in my judgment he should have cut off from these estimates $20,000,000 to $30,000,000, and I think he could have done it with perfect ease. On public works, chargeable to income, there is provision for an expenditure of $22,000,000, and if we analyse these figures we will find that the expenditure is for post offices, public buildings, postal stations, drill halls and armories, all expenditures of a kind for buildings which are in the nature of luxuries. Such expenditures, in time of peace, are perfectly allowable if the revenue is adequate, but in time of war I say to my hon. friend that all sorts of expenditure ought to be rigidly cut off, and that the budget should be limited to the barest necessities, and to the ability of the treasury to carry on the government.

I am sorry that in the speech of His Royal Highness no mention is made of any intention of cutting down expenditure to the greatest possible degree. I have been in office myself and I know the importunities that are put upon ministers for this kind of expenditure-post offices, postal buildings, drill halls, armories, and so on. Every member is anxious to favor in that way the constituency which he represents. I repeat that in time of peace such expenditures are allowable, but in time of war we must preach to the Canadian people the necessity of economy, not only in the public service, but in respect to private expenditures also. Upon this point we might well take a leaf out of the book of the British authorities, who have, since the beginning of the war, never ceased to represent to the British people the necessity of cutting off all luxuries and keeping expenditures to the bare necessities of life so long as we are at war. That is one of the sacrifices which we have to make in order to attain the great object we have in view. It is not yet too late, and I hope that when my hon. friend presents his estimates this year we will find that he has been preparing for us a pleasant surprise.

I was also disappointed when I saw no mention in the speech from the Throne of a transaction which took place during the recess, a transaction! wlhich was abnormal, and which, because it was abnormal, should have been brought to the attention of the House. I refer to the incident which occurred on the 27th November last, when the Government took forcible possession, by forced sale, of all the wheat which was in the elevators at the head of lake Superior, and eastward. In times of war the Government has a right for military necessity to exercise such an abnormal power. That power has been exercised during this war- in France, I believe, if nowhere else-but certainly in France. But upon every occasion when such an abnormal power has been exercised it lhas always been with the sole object, where there was scarcity of a commodity, Of keeping that commodity for the people and to prevent it from being exported abroad, thereby enhancing the price. But that is not the reason in this case. If the Government had commandeered the wheat which was in the elevators at the head of lake Superior, when they took some 17,000,000 bushels, such action was not taken on account of any scarcity. As was announced in the speech from the Throne, we never have had such a crop as we had last harvest. We are told, and correctly told, that the wheat crop last year amounted to 330,000,000 bushels. Out of 330,000,000 bushels the Government have resorted to this extraordinary measure of commandeering 17,000,000 bushels. For what reason? The reasons were given two days afterwards. The commandeering took place on the 27th November, and on the 29t'h November all the press published the following:

Official Government Statement.

Ottawa, November 2S.-The following official statement was issued by the government tonight :

' The phenomenal crop of wheat in the Canadian west has brought upon the government the duty of assisting to the farthest extent possible in its marketing. The supply of wheat the world over is known to have been abundant, and the importance of taking advantage of every opportunity to provide for the disposing of our grain is on that account the greater. For many months the government has been in touch with the British authorities with a view to procuring orders from the United Kingdom and the allied governments in order that the utmost share of the consuming demand in those countries may he turned towards our Canadian surplus. As a consequence of this, the British Government has requested the Canadian Government to provide within a short time a very large supply of No. 1, No. 2 and No 3 Canadian northern wheat.'

The reason given Is that the Government were so acting at the request of . the British authorities. Now, the day following, strange to say, the press had an announcement from Great Britain to the effect that there had been no such demand from the British authorities. The following appeared in the press of Canada on the 30th November:

' The official press bureau made the following statement yesterday:

[DOT] with reference to the announcement from Ottawa on November 28, that the Canadian Government had commandeered 16,000,000 bushels of wheat at the request of the British Government, the Biard of Agricu'ture state that the British Government have made no such rcqmst, and that at present They have no informat on on the subj ct.'

There is something extraordinary in this, and it is a most surprising fact that from the 30th November to tbe present day no attempt has been made to explain this discrepancy. I have seen statements in the press-not official, however, because the Government has not made them-to the effect that the wheat has been commandeered for the allied nations. Which nations? Great Britain? No; we have the information that Great Britain did not make such a request. Russia? Certainly not; Russia does not want our wheat; she is a large exporter of wheat. France? I am told on pretty good authority that the French Government have already taken measures to buy wheat in Canada, not through the intervention of the Canadian Government, but through the ordinary channdls of trade. I am told, but of this I have no positive information-I may be wrong, but I have it on authority which I consider respectable- that some of the wheat which was commandeered, and which was in the elevators at the head of lake Superior, already .belonged to France and had been purchased for the French Government.

Possibly this wheat may be intended for the Italian Government; but, Sir, if the wheat were bought for any of these governments, why did we not have an official statement as we had on the 30th of November in regard to the British Government? I firmly believe that the Allied nations are buying wheat to-day in Canada-not a paltry 17,000,000 bushels, but perhaps hundreds of millions of bushels-and they are doing it through the ordinary channels of trade. If the Allied nations wanted wheat from Canada, why were the ordinary channels of trade not made use of? Why was the trade disturbed as it was? Why was this dislocation of business allowed?

This is a mystery which has not been explained up to the present time. There is no doubt whatever that the action of the Government has had the effect-which should have been anticipated, whatever may he. the. motive behind it-of dislocating business and of interfering with interests existing at the head of lake Superior. It has been stated by the millers that they were put back in their operations, and they flocked to Ottawa in order to get redress. They obtained redress and the wheat that belonged to the millers was unmolested. Then the transaction was reviewed by some of the business men; and one of the largest operators on the lakes, Mr. Richardson of Kingston, is reported to have spoken as follows, according to the Ottawa Free Press of November 30:

* The wheat could easily have been purchased on the open market,' said Mr. Richardson, of Kingston, ths morning. ' It was not necessary to take such drastic action.'

' How could the grain have been purchased by the government without artificially boosting the prices?' Mr. Richardson was asked.

' By the use of brains,' Mr. R chardson curtly replied. ' The government bought oats at a time when there was a scarcity in Great Britain. They went about it quietly and succeeded in purchasing a large amount without boosting the prices. I myself bought two and a half millions o? Du ham wheat when there was only fou * millons ava lable. I didn't advertise th * fact and managed to make its purchase without prices being raised. It wasn't necessary to throw the whole grairt and flour trade into a turmoil by taking the drastic action taken.'

' Seventeen million bushels of the wheat taken was contracted for,' continued Mr. Richardson, ' ant no compensation is to be given for that.'

Here is the important part:

No man will be sure of a contract in the future, for nobody knows when a similar action is going to be sprung at any time later. However, it is done, and can't be undone.

I make no charge-I never make any charge until the fact has been shown to me, and -then I can judge for myself whether a transaction is right or wrong-I make no charge to-day, but I say to the Government that their action has given rise to suspicions. My hon. friend the Minister Of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) resented those suspicions, and he wrote a rather irate letter to the Ottawa Citizen to protest the purity of his intentions. I make no charge against my hon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce or against anybody else, but it is his own fault if it has been supposed that in that pile of wheat there is an Ethiopian concealed. The

Government should have been more diligent in giving information and in putting the whole facts before the House. My hon. friend would have done justice had he stated in the speech from the Throne: My Government has commandeered a certain quantity of wheat; we need it for such and such reasons, _ and the whole correspondence will be placed upon the table of the House. That has not been done, but it must be done. I repeat:

5 p.m. at the present time I make no charge against any one, because I have not the facts before me, but I must insist upon having all the particulars brought to the attention and knowledge of the House. If the transaction is, as I hope it may prove to be, perfectly honest and above board, it will be my duty to say so; but if it is not, then it shall be my duty to say the reverse.

At the opening of this session of the Parliament of Canada, we on this side of the House, His Majesty's loyal Opposition, feel that we should declare that we are perhaps more than ever before imbued with the responsibility which appertains to an opposition, and especially in time of war. It will be our duty to criticise : to criticise fairly under all circumstances, and to criticise forcibly perhaps, but always to criticise where-ever there is cause for criticism. It will also be our duty, and a far more pleasant duty it is, to support whatever there is just cause to support. We come to this House with this one aim only: to contribute as far as may be in our power to the final and complete victory of the Allies over Germany. Our supreme aspiration is that Belgium shall again be free and as prosperous as she was, if that be possible, in view of the awful destruction she has suffered. It is our aim also, that France shall recover her lost territory and her natural boundaries restored to her, and that old England shall retain, unimpaired and undiminished and as glorious as ever, her prestige and her power in the world. It is our aim that both England and France shall resume, as early as possible, their onward march towards the future enfranchisement of the human race from the shackles of passion and prejudice; that a renovated German democracy may be triumphant, and that the German people, sobered from their dreams of conquest and domination may return to the instincts of peace and berfevolence which at one time characterized their race.

[Sir Wilfrid Laurier.J

Topic:   THE GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH.
Subtopic:   ADDRESS IN REPLY.
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CON

Robert Laird Borden (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Rt. Hon. Sir ROBERT BORDEN (Prime ' Minister):

Mr. Speaker, let me in the first place congratulate you, Sir, upon your election to the Speakership of this House : and, in expressing those congratulations, cmay I be permitted also to express my confidence that you will discharge the duties of that high office in a manner worthy of its highest traditions. I join with my right hon. friend in 'Oongnatnlating the mover and the seconder upon the very eloquent, patriotic and earnest speeches to which we have listened this afternoon-speeches which express, indeed, the united spirit of the Canadian people with regard to the situation which Canada, las one of the great nations in this Empire, is presently called upon to face.

Since we last met some or our colleagues who sat with us in this House have passed awey. One of these was the Hon. Samuel Barker, who represented Hamilton East. Mr. Barker had been a member of this House for about fifteen years. He was a man with whom I had very intimate association and upon w*hose counsel and aid I have many a time depended. He did not speak often in this House, but when he did address us it was as one well acquainted with the subject he undertook to discuss. Those who knew him only within the last four or five years did not fully realize the great energy and ability he brought to the dischiatrge of his public duties in, the earlier years of his parliamentary career.

Another member who has passed away is Mr. Lancaster. He entered the House, I believe, in the same year as Mr. Barker. Mr. Lancaster was a man of very earnest purpose and very strong convictions, which he expressed with great frankness, and force. All of us have greatly regretted that during the past few years his health was clearly failing. We shall all pay tribute to his memory as one having an earnest and even intense desire to perform his duty as a public man and to serve the interests of the people in every possible way.

We mourn also the death of Mr. Reid, who represented Restigouche. My personal acquaintance with him was not 'so intimate as with the others of whom I .have spoken. He did not often address the House. He deserved and received the respect and confidence of bis fellow members.

A fourth member has passed away since we last met in the person of Mr. Richards, who represented Prince, P.E.I. He was a very genial, kindly man, one wiho made us feel that, whatever his party feelings might

be, there was back of all a warm and sympathetic nature.

I am sure that both sides of the House will join with me in expressing to the families and relatives of our four late colleagues our very sincere sympathy and condolence.

My right ihon. friend the leader of the Opposition has not been very critical in his remarks to-day. He has chided us a little for one or two matters to which I may be pardoned for devoting a moment's attention. He spoke of the large estimates of last session. The' estimates were not greatly cut down last session, but they were left- there with the distinct understanding, if I recollect correctly, that no new works should be undertaken during the pendency of this war, unless they were of' the most urgent and imperative character. That policy has absolutely been carried out from the commencement of the war until the present time. We have undertaken no new works whatever, so far as I remember. All members of this House are as much impressed as is my right hon. friend with the necessity for strictest economy during this war. They can fully realize that in addition to beginning no new works we have had to consider from time to time whether it might not be in the public interest even to discontinue the construction of works already under contract. Fortunately the financial strength of this country has proven so great that up to the present time it has not been necessary to resort to such a course. But I desire to say that if. in the urgency of conditions as they may be pressed upon this country in the future it should be necessary for us to take that course, the Government would not shrink from taking it. I believe that in doing so, if it became necessary, we should have the support not only of members on both sides of this House, but of the people as well.

My right hon. friend also seems to have some remarkable suspicions in his mind regarding proceedings taken by the Government to secure a very considerable quantity of wheat in the latter part of November last. He was good enough to say that he had not any charge to make. Well, if he had not any charge to make it -might perhaps htve been in better taste if he had not referred to a charge at all.. If he ever should have a charge to make, we shall be glad indeed to have him put it forward. It has been the aim of the Government from the first, and especially during th-e past autumn, in view of the abundant harvest with which Canada has been blessed, to seek an outlet

for our products in every part of the world where a market could be found. When communications were made to us on behalf of the Allied governments with regard to a needed supply of wheat we took a course which, I think, should commend itself to every hon. member of this House. We sought and obtained the - best disinterested advice we could procure in the.country as to the proper proceeding on the part of the Government in the matter. To that end we consulted gentlemen whose opinion, I think, my right hon. friend would not be inclined to depreciate.

With regard to the dislocation of business of which my right -hon. friend -speaks, I do not think that such dislocation, if there was any, was at all of a serious character. As a matter of fact, I -understand from my hon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) that the greater part of the wheat, thus secured by the Government in the full belief that the course they took w-as in the public interest-, has been moved out; and I venture to say that our efforts-, in that regard and otherwise, to secure for the producers of this country an outlet for the splendid product of Canada during the past year merits the congratulations rather than the condemnation of my right hon. friend. However, as to that, the Minister of Trade and Commerce will be fully prepared to give a complete account of his stewardship. As . to the absurd rumours which were spread through -some portions of the press, it is almost unnecessary for -me to reiterate what the Minister of Trade and *Commerce has already made public, that there is not the slightest foundation in fact for -any such suggestion as that which has been made.

Leaving these points, I wish to allude to certain matters dealt with by the mover and seconder of the Address as well as by my right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition, and also, in a later portion of my remarks, to give some account of the mission which I undertook to Britain in the past summer and of its results so far as they affect the public interests of this country and of the Empire.

In the first place, with regard to the .war, my right hon. friend has spoken of the condition as it is to-day. Looking only at the surface of things land comparing the 'Condition to day with what it was when this Parliament prorogued on the fifteenth day of April last, one w-ou-ld say that the outlook does not seem highly encouraging. All the -events have happened to which my right- hon. -friend has referred. In the

[DOT]distinguished themselves. At the moment I recall the names of Papineau, Barte, Dan-sereau and Roy. No greater, no more heroic *deed has been or could be performed in this war than that of Major Roy, who died in the [DOT]endeavour to save his men from danger. His name, for that gallant deed, ought ever to he blazoned in the memory of all Canadians.

My right hon. friend has alluded to conscription-to the idea in this country or elsewhere that there may be conscription in Canada. In speaking in the first two or three months of this war I made it clear to the people of Canada that we did not propose any conscription. I repeat that announcement to-day with emphasis. My right hon. friend has alluded to reports in the press *of the United States. I believe that representations even earlier than those which he mentions were made, and that there was an attempt, not only in the western provinces of Canada, but elsewhere, to convince citizens of American origin residing in Canada that they were in danger in that regard. I doubt greatly whether they would be so influenced even if conscription were announced to-day, judging from the splendid spirit which has animated our citizens of American origin, both in the east and west of Canada. They have been as eager, as determined to do their part in fighting for *Canada and for the Empire in this war as the native born citizens of this Dominion.

_ Now, with regard to this proposed large increase, let us remember that we are in the agony of the greatest struggle that our Empire or the world has ever known. We can win it if we make the necessary sacrifice and the necessary effort. We know what it means to all the allied nations. My right lion, friend this afternoon quoted from the despatch from the French ambassador at Berlin, which has been made public by the French Government. The same idea has been expressed by a great German writer, whose teachings evidently impressed themselves upon the German people, in these words:

By one means or another accounts must be settled with Prance, if we are to win elbow room for our world policy. That is the first and most unconditional requirement of our world policy, and as French hostility is not to be removed once for all by pacific measures, recourse must simply be had to the power of arms. France must be so completely overthrown that she can never stand in our way again.

One of the greatest intellects in Germany, dealing with the part which Germany shall [DOT]play and the part which the British Empire

fSir Robert Borden.]

shall play in the future of the world, used these words:

If our Empire dares to persevere resolutely in the new path of our independent colonial policy, a conflict of interest with England will be Inevitable. It lies in the nature of things that the new great power in the centre of Europe must settle with every other great power in turn. With Austria, with France, with Russia, we already have squared accounts. The last settlement with England seems likely to be the longest and hardest.

Are we fighting in this war to win or to lose? There can be only one answer to that question in Canada and throughout the Empire. Then, if we are to win we must realize that this war cannot be brought to a successful conclusion without sacrifice. Undoubtedly throughout our Empire the preparation made by the enemy through half a century was underestimated. Thank God, we yet have time for effort, for preparation. But our preparation and our effort must not be too late. May I quote some very pregnant words of Mr. Lloyd George in great speech of 20th December last :

Too late in moving here. Too late in arriving there. Too late in coming to this decision. Too late in starting with enterprises. Too late in preparing! In this war the footsteps of the Allied forces have been dogged by the mocking spectre of "too late," and unless we quicken our movements damnation will fall on the sacred cause for which so much gallant blood has flowed.

So I say it is time for us in Canada to consider our course, to realize what further effort is necessary. Therefore I recommended to my colleagues, and we shall propose to Parliament, that the forces authorized in Canada for assisting the Empire in this war shall be increased in the measure which I have indicated. We owe something to the 120,000 men who have gone to the front. We owe something to those who have died in a great cause and to those who live to avenge them. If we are animated by the spirit of the men who fought at Ypres, Festubert and Givenchy, the Canadian people will not shrink even from the sacrifice and the effort thus proposed.

Before speaking of the results of my visit to Great Rritain last summer, I must mention certain important orders in council-passed since prorogation which will be laid on the table of the House to-morrow. Two of them at least are in fulfilment of pledges which I gave to Parliament at the conclusion of last session. We have appointed a War Purchasing Commission, the personnel of which, as the House knows,

*consists of the Hon. A. E. Kemp, a member of the Government, and Messrs. Geo. F. Galt and H. Laporte. The order in council contains special provisions to safeguard the public interest, which I believe the House will find satisfactory when hon. gentlemen come to examine them. The responsibilities of that commission have been very great;, I believe that they have been efficiently and conscientiously discharged, and that the public interest has been conserved and advanced by the step which we have thus taken.

The Government also appointed a commission, consisting of Sir Charles Davidson, an ex-chief justice of the province of Quebec, for the purpose of making inquiry into all matters attending the pur-ohase of supplies and munitions for the Government of Canada since the outbreak of war. Sir Charles Davidson, a man of unquestioned ability, character, and experience, has taken up this task, and has carried it on with vigour. In consequence of his investigation, -some prosecutions have been instituted, and at least one man has been convicted. The Commission has not yet made its report, but as soon as received, it will be laid upon the table of the House.

Before proceeding to England in July last, I brought to the attention of the council the importance of inquiring into certain matters which are of obvious urgency at the present time, and which will be of increased urgency after the conclusion of peace. An order in council, then passed, will be laid upon the table of the House, and it will show that the questions submitted to that Commission are of a very comprehensive character. They relate to improved methods of agricultural production, to increasing the acreage under production, to the settlement of the land, to bringing immigration of a suitable type for that purpose, to giving assistance to persons who may be inclined to come to Canada for that purpose, to co-operation among producers, to the distribution of products, and to the problems of transportation which are incident to that purpose. Special consideration is to be given to anticipated immigration after the war. My hon. friend the Minister of Public Works delivered a very cogent and impressive speech on that subject a few months ago. The commission is actively engaged in, studying the several questions, and they intend to call to their assistance, whether in Canada or elsewhere, the best expert

opinion that they can obtain, and to give a complete and thorough investigation to these subjects, which we all agree, are of the greatest possible importance.

There was also appointed during the recess the Military Hospitals and Convalescent Homes Commission. I desire to express my very profound appreciation of the willingness, the eagerness of the Provincial Governments of Canada to cooperate with the Federal Government in that good work. All the Provincial Governments are, I think, represented on that commission, or have established commissions of their own, and the ancillary or assisting commissions in the various provinces of Canada are all working in cooperation with the main commission. I hope and believe that in this way the care of returned soldiers while invalided will be suitably provided for.

Now I come to my visit to Great Britain during the past summer. One of the objects which I had in mind in undertaking that mission was to ascertain from first hand information, as best I could, what might be the preparations of the Empire for winning this war by. the organization of all its resources. I was given the fullest possible information by the ministers of the British Government. I recall with great appreciation the fact that for this purpose Mr. Lloyd George rose almost from a sick bed, while he was recuperating in the country after very prolonged and very exhausting labours. He came to London the day before I left Great Britain and discussed with me very frankly the whole situation. Mr. Lloyd George has made it clear in the speech to which I have alluded that opportunities may have been lost, but that there is still time to make good. He has stated that in May last while the Germans were turning out 250,000 shells per day, the greater part of them high explosives, the British were turning out 15,500 shells, of which only -2,500 were high explosive shells. High explosive shells were demanded most insistently by the generals at the front at that time. Production has been enormously increased and is still going on. It would not be proper*for me to make public all that Mr. Lloyd George was good enough to confide to me. Those who have examined his speech will remember his statement that there are 33 national shell factories in Great Britain, and 100 factories in the hands of private firms; that the percentage of deliveries has

been increased from 16 to 80; and that these factories will soon be able to produce in one week the amount which some time ago was secured by careful husbanding for four months. Larger guns are necessary. The very largest guns which Great Britain had on hand at the commencement of the war are now the smallest type of gun which they have in use at the front. The industries of Great Britain are engaged on a very large scale in the manufacture of field guns, machine guns, trench mortars, small arms, and every variety of shells and ammunition.

Let me read to the House a very graphic description contained in a letter to the London Times from a neutral who had recently visited Germany and Great Britain. This is his language:

What is England going to do? This was the whispered query that I heard time and again in Germany. For I found that the possible power of Britain is more truly appreciated and understood in Germany than in any other country in Europe to-day. The great German captains of industry, who have hitherto made the success of German arms possible, seem to realize that if ever the vast industrial might of Britain, so akin to their own, is properly mobilized, if its resources are consistently and adequately exploited, if every ounce of latent energy is made available, then, no matter how great a success German arms may have achieved, no matter how flrrnly entrenched German troops may stand on enemy soil, the tables will turn, and German chances of final victory will fade into limbo.

I have just crossed Great Britain from orie end to the other, and I have visited innumerable towns and cities. Britain at last, after more than a year's delay, is mobilized for war. Her achievement to-day far surpasses the wildest idea of the " kolossal." I have seen factory after factory, working steadily 24 hours a day, seven days in the week, employing thousands of men and women making shells, shells, shells ! I have seen factory after factory making aeroplanes ; I have seen guns being forged under hydraulic pressure of 12,000 tons;-howitzers forged out of the stoutest steel, which requires 16 hours in a blast furnace to heat.

I have seen shell cases pressed out of the living ingot, in less than five minutes, and shells forged at a speed three times as great.

I have seen men working at great forges, where gun parts are cast, straining every nerve and muscle to accomplish their difficult tasks; handling vast lumps of red-hot metal with lightn ng dexterity. I have seen machine-guns by the hundreds, and rifles by the thousand, all of the most careful workmanship and finish.

The whole north country has been turned into one vast arsenal. The deep pall of fog and smoke that hangs low over the great industrial centres of the Midlands, deeper, denser than it has been for some years past, means that England has at last turned with full energy to the mighty task. The achievement is the more remarkable when it is appreciated that all this work is merely a beginning.

In that connection, may I speak for a moment of what we are doing in Canada in that regard. A good deal has been made public in the press recently. In Canada we have about 250 factories engaged in the manufacture of munitions, none of them with any previous experience whatever. The value of the orders, as announced by the chairman, of the Imperial Munitions Board amounts to a little over $300,000,000, and I understand that munitions, to the value of $100,000,000 have already been sent overseas. The orders that have been filled, and that still remain to be filled, involve the use of 500,000 tons of steel, and the payments in January of this year aggregated $35,000,000. It has been a source of great satisfaction to the Minister of Finance, and T am sure to the people of this country, that Canada, has 'been able to assist the British Government in financing the payments for that purpose. I believe that of all the payments to be made during the present month of January, the Canadian Government is providing at least one-half, so that we are not only doing our part in producing these munitions of war, but we are also doing our part in temporarily financing for the British Government about one-half of the payments.

Now, the question arises, why we are not doing more in Canada, and why they are not doing more in Great Britain. The reason for that is of a very simple character. The production of a portion of the shell is a work which can be undertaken without great difficulty by almost any factory in the country, but when you come to the more delicate and complex portions of the shell it is impossible to proceed with these as rapidly and as satisfactorily as with the simpler portions.

I was told on the best authority that one company in the United Kingdom which undertook some years ago to produce ,he delicate portions of shells equipped with a time fuse did not make a great success of it for about three years, and that another great firm in . Great Britain found it difficult to obtain satisfactory results in less than two years. We in this country, and the manufacturers in Great Britain as well, are undertaking to do it in much less time than that. It is of no value whatever to pile up shell bodies, unless you can also supply all the component parts necessary to produce a shell ready for use at the front. As far as the fuse alone is concerned, I beli'eMe that 267 different gauges have to be used and that, contained in the time fuse, there are no less.

than 240 different parts. The supply of the simpler portions of the shell both in -Great Britain and here has vastly outstripped the production of the more difficult, and complicated portions. However, the work is in good hands both in Great Britain and in this country, and I have no doubt that we shall be able to advance in Canada as rapidly as in any other part of the world.

I need not speak of the necessity oi munitions. Every hon. gentleman who has kept himself acquainted with the incidents of this war realizes most thoroughly that vast armies are absolutely of no use unless they arc supplied with artillery of the most-powerful type and with a most abundant provision of munitions.

I took up with the British Government Canada's ability to furnish supplies necessary for the war. We have repeatedly brought that subject to the attention of the British and allied governments. I took it up during my recent visit with several members of the British Government and I pressed it upon them most earnestly as 1 had done previously by correspondence. We provided them with a list of articles of a very varied character that could be furnished by this country for the use of the allied nations. I discussed also with the British authorities the importance of emphasizing to the allied governments the abundant resources of Canada for supplying many needed articles. I had also a conference with the International Purchasing Commission, or, as it is known, the Commission Internationale de Ravitaillement. All of the allied nations were represented . there. I furnished them with a full list of articles that we could supply, and I pressed upon them the importance of looking to Canada in that regard.

Mr. Wintour, the Director of Contracts in the War Office, gave me a statement of the amount of the orders which had* been placed in Canada up to the 10th July, 1915, and I was glad to observe that the total orders placed in Canada to that time ran up to $240,000,000. I have very little douot that up to the 1st January, 1916, the amount of orders placed in Canada, not only by the British Government but by the allied governments, will run well up to $500,000,000. Thi-s is a great triOute to the producing power of Canada. The variety of articles supplied is immense, many new industries have been established, some of which will certainly be permanent, and there has also been a greatly increased production in others.

Then, I took up also with the British Government the important question of transportation. More than a year ago we arranged with the Canadian Pacific RaiB way Company that we should have the services of Mr. A. H. Harris in order to organize transportation for the very large supplies which were ordered in this country by the British Government. As indicating what has been accomplished in that regard I shall read an extract from a recent report of Mir. Harris. I need not read the whole report, but just a few paragraphs. He says.

The prompt action of the government in adopting my suggestion has a cured to Canadian manufactu ers and faimtrs an uninterrupted outlet for the hundreds of millions of dollars worth of War Office orders,, the acceptance of which would not have been possible but for the inauguration of an economical overseas service.

. Further, the fact that the transports owing to their regularity in sailings have been in a position to handle promptly the War Office supplies which otherwise would have occupied space on regular liners, ,has been of distinct advantage to the export trade of Canada, and has released to that extent ocean space for commercial tonnage. Since the Inauguration of the service not a pound of Imperial Government' transport has heen forwarded on regular liners.

During the period between 28th August, 1914, and 30th April, 1915, 244,913 gross tons were handled on account of Imperial and Dominion governments.

Between, however, the 1st of May and 30th November, 1915, there was an enormous expansion-over 410,000 tons being forwarded during that period (7 months), or about 67 per cent more than was moved in the preceding 8 months. '

The Oveisens Department is now being called upon to provide for about 125,000 gross tens of munitions, war metirial and supp ies per month, or approximately one and a half million tons per annum, and the tonnage is still growing.

He then goes on to give the number' of transports and sailings. I need1 not read further, tout I may inform the House that in February,. 1915, we arranged with the Admiralty for eighteen transports, which number has been increased during the past six oi seven months to forty transports of which, during the winter, twenty are allotted' to Halifax and twenty to St. John. In this way the producers of the country have had a great deal of necessary -assistance in the transportation of their supplies.

Besides that w-e have continually' been in communication with the Admiralty, both during my visit in the past summer, and by correspondence as well, in regard to the necessity of releasing as far as possible tonnage for the North Atlantic service and we r

did secure, by the efforts I made during the past summer, and by the correspondence which has taken place from time to time, the release of several ships for that - service. I pressed upon, the Admiralty the consideration that a larger proportion of steamships had been taken from the North Atlantic service than, from any other service. This was for the reason that the ships plying in the North Atlantic were better adapted to the purposes of the Admiralty. So, we have done the ibest we could in this way; and the Government have taken some further steps'through my colleague the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) as to which he will give the House information at a later date. The whole situation, of course, is subject to the paramount necessities of the War Office and the Admiralty. If .we aue going to carry on this war successfully it is necessary that large bodies of troops should be transported and that they should have' ample supplies of every kind. Thus in all representations made by Canada we had to Ibear in mind those paramount considerations without regard to which the war could not toe brought to a successful conclusion. Transportation on the Pacific was also discussed and I hope that some progress has been made.

I took up also with the British Govern' ment the purchase of horses and the establishment of Canadian remount depots in England. As to this we arrived at the conclusion, after a careful discussion of the whole subject, that it would toe a waste of money for the Canadian Government to establish remount depots in the United Kingdom, or in France. Therefore we are availing ourselves of the British remount depots which are thoroughly well organized. But we went a step further upon the suggestion of my hon. friend the Minister of Militia and Defence (Sir Sam Hughes). He said that he saw no reason wtoy the British 'Remount Commission here should net purchase all horses required for the allied forces in western theatre of the war, including the Canadian forces. Therefore, we arranged that the British Remount Commission should make purchases of all horses required for the Canadian forces and issue them as required at the net cost.

We also- took up with the British Remount Department the purchase of horses in Canada by the French Government; and after considerable discussion and some correspondence, the British

authorities finally consented that the arrangement which had * prevented the French Government from purchasing in Canada should be terminated, and accordingly since the month of August last the French Government has been at perfect liberty to buy in Canada; and I hope that they will take steps to make purchases in this country, particularly in- the West, where I believe there is a type of horse which would very well suit the requirements of the French Government.

There are other matters, but at the moment I need say no more as to the arrangements arrived at .between the Government of Canada and that of Great Britain during the visit of the hon. the Minister of Militia (Sir Sam Hughes) and myself.

It is my privilege and my duty to speak of the spirit which I found in France and in Great Britain. The spirit of' France is grave, patient, self-reliant, confident and determined. No great nation animated by such a spirit can be overthrown. The whole manhood of that nation is in arms; each man is doing his allotted task regardless of social condition, wealth, birth, or any other consideration. To give the House an illustration of what this war means to the-French people and how each man is doing the duty which is allotted to him, the military chauffeur placed at the disposal of the Officier de Liaison at the headquarters of General Joffre was no less a person than the son of the French Ambassador at one of the great capitals of Europe. This young man did duty there as chauffeur, performing his allotted task to the best of his ability and as a matter of duty.

Wherever the Germans have passed in France is found rain and desolation. I saw the town of Albert, not one single building of which from one end to the other was left with a roof on it-a perfect "picture of desolation. I saw Senlis, only about seven miles from Chantilly, desolate, almost completely destroyed. Hon. members will recall the fact that when the Germans passed through Senlis, more than a year ago, they executed the mayor and, I believe, seventeen of the citizens because they had been fired upon by some Turcos as they entered the town. I saw also the rains of Creil, which is in the immediate vicinity of Chantilly.

We do not realize in this country what war means; no man can realize what it means until be has witnessed the picture of ruin and desolation which can be seen in

France. At Chantilly itself, only twenty-five miles from Paris, one can hear in the open the booming of the German guns at the front. The French people and the French arnjy have an absolute and perfect confidence in the issue of this war, and I repeat again that they are inspired with an absolute' and resolute determination that this war shall never cease until the invaders have been driven from France and until Belgium has been freed.

In Great Britain I found the same splendid spirit. I believe there has been a profound change in the spirit of the British nation during the past twelve months. The gravity of the situation is now realized thoroughly and fully. It may possibly be said that John Bull requires a little bit of hammering to make him thoroughly in earnest; but when John Bull is once aroused he is terribly in earnest, and there is no doubt about it that the British nation is now tremendously in earnest in this war. The British people have not been accustomed to methods of warfare such as those which have prevailed. The British soldier is naturally a humane man; he goes to battle with the idea that if he succeeds in conquering his enemy and taking him prisoner he should treat that prisoner not only humanely, but generously. That is his spirit. It is the same kind of spirit as that which animates two Britons when they fight with each other: when one comes out second best he immediately shakes hands with the man who has thrashed him, and there is no more bad feeling between them. In this war, however, the incidents which have taken place, such as the Scarborough raids, the Zeppelin attacks, the Lusitania horror, and, last but not least, the execution of Edith Cavell, have aroused in the British people a stronger and more intense feeling than I believe has ever been aroused in that nation in any previous Avar. These incidents and the inhuman and barbarous methods of warfare practised at the front hhve had their effect; they have brought more recruits to the British standard than any other agency in this war from first to last; and they have aroused a. fierce and grim determination that this- war shall not cease until the cause for which it was undertaken shall have been fully and absolutely vindicated. *

As to the Canadian troops at the front, I saw the Princess Patricia Regiment on the 23rd day of August, 1914, at Lansdowne park, when divine service was held and the colours were presented by Her Royal Highness the Princess Patricia. I saw them on-the 21st day of July, 1915, at the front, where they had 'been since the previous December. There were then only two officers out of all those who had gone to the front, only two still able to perform' their duties; those were Niven and Papineau. In the trench warfare at St. Eloi on the 14th of March, on the 7th of May and on many occasions from the end of 1914 up to the time that I saw them, they had shown tr the enemy how Canadians could fight. Hon. members will recall that on the 7th of May,. 1915, this regiment was attacked in overwhelming force by the Germans. They went into the fight mustering 635 men; at the end of the day only 150 men were able to-respond to the call. But they had held the line. Well might their brigadier general, in bidding them farewell, speak of their unparalleled tenacity, and declare that they had earned a reputation which would stand amongst the highest in the record of the-exploits of the British army.

I saw the Canadian division at the front as well. I saw them at Valcartier camp in September, 1914, and I had the honour and the privilege of saying farewell to them, of shaking hands with every officer of the force before they went overseas. I saw what was left of them at the front on the 21st of July, -1915. In the meantime, their heroic deeds at Ypres, Festubert, Givenchy, had thrilled the whole country. As the mover of the Address said, they were men of no/military experience; they were taken from every walk of life in Canada. Only nine months before they were put to the test, they had been engaged in the ordinary avocations of life in this country. You remember that just one week after this Parliament prorogued, that is to say on the 2Bnd of April, 1915, these men were put to as, fierce and terrible a test as any troops in the world were ever subjected to. They were vastly outnumbered, they were almost surrounded, they were subjected to horrible and, unknown methods of warfare. The awful effects' of gas no man can realize who has not seen, as I have seen, the survivors of this terrible ordeal. The men I saw in the hospitals and convalescent homes included in their numbers some who had endured the full force of that attack, and who, even months afterwards, were actually gasping for breath. Under these conditions, their left flank in the air, the Canadians held on all that day. They held on during the following day. One brigade which had been eventually sent back for

rest, tired, weary, exhausted, took up their arms before any respite was obtained when a further call was made upon them. One cannot say what would have happened or would not have happened if the Canadians had given way on that occasion. Perhaps the Germans might have really broken through and reached Calais. But the consensus of opinion of all those who spoke to me on that subject, and many of them were men who could speak with authority, the consensus was that- on that day, the 22nd of April, 1915, the Canadian division saved- the day for the Empire and for the allied nations. There is no doubt whatever as to the issue of this war, if we in Canada and in all the Empire are animated by the spirit which moved those men on that day. Among the men at the front, among the men in the hospitals and convalescent homes, there is a supreme confidence. But they believe also that the Empire must be aroused to supreme effort and to intense earnestness. We owe that to them, we owe it to ourselves.

There is no doubt as to what Germany anticipated and intended when this war was planned. She believed that Great Britain would -stand aside and thus earn and deserve the contempt and aversion of her allies and the scorn of the world. France would be crushed, Russia hurled back, and peace made under such conditions as would completely isolate our Empire. Then at her leisure Germany would attend to Great Britain, her colonial empire and her sea power, in pursuance of a policy which regards treaties as scraps of paper, war as a legitimate national enterprise and the possession of overwhelming military strength as a justification for unprovoked aggression. The mills of the gods grind slow, but they grind exceeding fine. I believe we have still a long way to go before we see the end of this war. But I also-believe that before its conclusion our Empire will have in the field armies rivalling in numbers and efficiency those of any belligerent nation and more thoroughly equipped than any of them with guns of every type, munitions and all the mechanical devices that are so essential. Again I say that if we are in earnest this struggle can have but one conclusion, and that is victory for the allied arms. And in the fierce flame of this war, in the ordeal of sacrifice which it entails, the strong elements of the Canadian nation will learn the better to understand each other, and through that understanding will be welded

into a more perfect and splendid unity than ever before.

At six o'clock, the House took recess.

The House resumed at eight o'clock.

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LIB

Michael Clark

Liberal

Mr. MICHAEL CLARK (Red Deer):

out there and destroyed the good seed which the farmers were trying to sow upon that mind of his. Whatever the influence, we have not got the market yet, and I very much fear that up to the present point in our history the historian will record about this bountiful harvest that Providence smiled upon the efforts of the farmer, that the farmer did his duty in producing the stuff, but that we had a government in power that was so "unwise that it did its hast to thwart both Providence and the farmer by not opening a market to the south.

I want to congratulate. the Government upon the fact that they have, I think, correctly interpreted the mind of the 'country in regard to the holding or not holding of an election during the time of War. I offer them my very sincere congratulation upon that interpretation and upon the change of heart and attitude which that interpretation indicates in themselves. It would not be in human nature-it certainly is not in mine-not to refer in a good natured way to the fact that there is very grave doubt whether this attitude of mind on the part of the Government existed last spring. 1 should be shutting my eyes to obvious facts if I did not assert that I know it did not exist. Why, there was one impatient member sitting behind the Treasury benches, the limit of whose patience was expressed in the term of twenty-four hours for this young and impetuous electioneerer said he would not wait twenty-four hours before having an election in the spring. I am certainly in order in congratulating that hon. gentleman, so far as he supports the Government, on his admirable change of heart. The Minister of Public Works, I think, made the discovery in the middle of last session that the people of this country were 'frothing at the mouth almost to tear the Senate in pieces. I think that during the summer he made the discovery that, in so far as there was any desire to tear anybody to to pieces, it was not the Senate of Canada', so far at any rate as his own province is concerned. The ferocious fangs of the people of Manitoba seem to have been iwhetting themselves for quite a different prey.

My right hon. friend the Prime Minister himself was not free from the suspicion of holding over us on this side of the House, the bludgeon of a general election. He waxed angry with my right hon. leader because he and those of us who sit behind

him, ventured to criticise the Budget, even to the extent of introducing an amendment to it. Now, for my part I have no regret about the criticism or about the amendment, especially that portion of it which referred to the raising of additional obstacles against trade from Great Britain at this particular crisis of the Empire's history. I would appeal to my hon. friend the Minister of Finance, to whom I have never appealed without receiving careful attention, whether our criticism of that particular part of the Budget of last year has not been justified in the event. It cannot be pleasant to him-I am sure it is not-that at this- moment the imports from Great Britain to this country should be disappearing almost to the vanishing point. This decrease in British imports into Canada comes at a moment when we know that Great Britain needs,'for the particular purposes 'of exchange, to be sending more goods into Canada. The imports into Canada from Great Britain at this moment are disappearing almost to the vanishing point, to the enormous hindrance of Britain's complete efficiency in carrying on from a commercial point of view the war in which we are at the present time engaged. It is perhaps fair to warn the minister and the Government that in the event of any further proposals of a similar nature we should consider that we were neglecting our duty, as members of this House and as loyal sons of the Empire, holding the views we do, if we did not once more raise the strongest protest and submit any such proposals to the strictest criticism, even to the point of a division if the need called for it. As I say, these things are ample evidence that there has been a salutary change of heart on the part of the Government in regard to the desirability of- an election while the war lasts. If, last Spring, when Parliament prorogued, you asked any prophet who was supposed to be in the inner circles of the confidence of the Government, when the election was to take place, there was not one who did not answer with the utmost certainty of the tipster: June is the time that you have got to look out for..

I do not want to pry any further into ministerial secrets, but I should be guilty of being untrue to myself if I did not admit that there were honourable exceptions. My hon. friend the Minister of Militia (Sir Sam Hughes), since he put his hand to the plough in this war, has never taken it off. I might mention others whom I strongly -suspect of having been opposed to this trend

in the party opposite. I am perfectly sure that my bon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) could neveT have smiled upon the prospect of an election while the war was on. I know that my hon. friend from St. Antoine (Sir Herbert Ames), who has done such splendid work in connection with the Patriotic Fund, knew, from the point of view of that fund alone, the damage that would be done to the country, the distraction and confusion that would be caused; and he was always opposed to an election. But I very much fear that the exceptions to those who have undergone this change of heart were like the righteous in Sodom: too few to save the city.

So far as this side of the House is concerned, so far at any rate as I am personally concerned, there has been no change of attitude. I believed at the time the first shot was fired in this war that during the continuance of the war, an election in Canada would be a public calamity, and 1 believe it now. Who is there that does not believe it? Our ladies are assembling all over the country, irrespective of politics, to knit their eyes out when they are not weeping them out, making comforts for the soldiers at the front. Who is there that would throw a bomb of contention into assemblies like that; distraction and confusion are terms most admirably chosen to describe the conditions which would prevail; conditions which can receive no justification whatever on grounds of policy, because on the ground of the policy of prosecuting this war to a successful termination there has never been the slightest difference of opinion between those on this side of the House and those on the other. Yet, although that is our attitude, we cannot absolve ourselves and do not wish to absolve ourselves for a mom'ent from the duty of bringing to bear the best political ability we have, on any measures for the prosecution of the war, which are brought before this House and this Pairliament. I cannot conceive, as I said a year ago, that any member of the Government could wish to avoid criticism. Mr. Asquith, from the very beginning of the war, not only excused criticism but invited criticism. What is Parliament for? What is an Opposition for except to engage in criticism, not necessarily in destructive criticism-and in this ease I should say net destructive at all towards the political prospects of a government -but helpful and co-operating criticism. That is the kind of criticism which we thought we were giving when we went to the point of a division in regard to taxation last 3i

session. We thought that an extra tariff upon British goods was bound ito affect deleteriously the entran.ee and the amount of goods entering Canada from Britain. That criticism has been justified in the result. It was not hurtful criticism; it was helpful criticism, and the country and the Empire would have been in a better position to-day if the Government had conceded our point, and had withdrawn an impost of which P do not think they are very proud at the present moment, and for which I am perfectly sure they will receive the condemnation of history.

Now, we are embarking upon the third war session of this Parliament, and the Government is once more facing Parliament with propositions which are unprecedented in the history of Canada. I hope that we shall never forget on this side of the House that they are unprecedented. The Government is asking Parliament to sanction their commitment to enormous responsibilities in regard to the raising of men for this war and the raising of money for the support 'of those men. Now, I just want at this stage in the session to tell the Government quite bluntly that, so far as I have been able to observe- and I have been up and down the country a great deal, both east and west

there' are two things which are agitating the minds of the people in regard to these propositions of the Government. There are certain things that are exercising the public mind very widely, from east to west, in Canada. In regard to recruiting, I do not think that the people of this country will have the Slightest objection to the Government naming half a million men as the figure at which we should aim for the present in our recruiting efforts.

I do not think so, though I agree with my leader in questioning whether it was wise to name a specific number. I have always held and proclaimed in this House that in the event of the Empire being at war, Canada would be behind the flag with all her moral and material and human resources- that she would be there with the men and there with the money. There was a time, if I wanted to be controversial, when our hon. friends opposite were not so sure about the -men. I do not wish, however, to press that point, or to raise any controversial point in regard to the defence of the Empire at present. That has been our attitude so far as I, a humble member of the Opposition, have had an opportunity to declare it; and I repeat that we on this side have no holding back as to the number of men that should be sent. It might have

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LIB

Edward Mortimer Macdonald

Liberal

Mr. MACDONALD:

And in Ontario as well.

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LIB

Michael Clark

Liberal

Mr. CLARK:

I think the most antediluvian horse was found in Nova Scotia. I have very little appetite, Mr. Speaker, for this class of politics; very little appetite indeed, and I do not know that in the midst of a war our people have a keen appetite for it, but when things like those that were exposed last year in the Public Accounts Committee, are pushed under their noses, they would not have been human if they

did not ask themselves this simple question: Is the Government making the best use of the enormous sums of money which Parliament has voted for the purpose for which it was voted, that is, for the purpose of terminating this war at the earliest possible moment? That question is being very widely asked. I would be the last man to approach Parliament with rumours, I would be the last man to approach Parliament with statements which were not authenticated facts. I quite realize that there must be inquiry into all these matters and I am sure that the Government realizes it too, and I have not the least doubt that their attitude towards the appeal I am making now will be precisely what it yas last year, and that they will hail an investigation; that they will hail the fullest possible inquiry as to the way in which these appropriations are being used. They would be unwise in their own interest, as well as unwise in the interest of the Empire, if they did not hail such an investigation.

As far as we on this side of the House are concerned, our attitude is unchanged. While we believe and endorse to the full the policy of the Government we do not by any means pledge ourselves to support the details of that policy, nor do we mean to condone for one moment any diversion to the private pockets of individuals of the public funds that should be given to the killing of Germans and the termination of this war. With this reservation our attitude is to-day what it has always been, one of hearty, thorough, and sincere support of the Government in providing the last man and spending the last dollar that Canada can afford for the legitimate purposes of this war.

I am going to claim, before I sit down, Mr. Speaker, that from the time the first shot in this war was fired until the present moment, there has been no citizen of the British Empire, there is no citizen of the British Empire at this moment, of whom tlie whole Empire has more reason to be proud, of whom it is more proud, than my right hon. friend who leads the Opposition (Sir Wilfrid Laurier). With not a drop of British blood in his veins, he has never ceased to be an admirer and supporter of British institutions and an exponent of the highest statesmanship which has guided the destinies of the British Empire whether in the old land or in the new. From the beginning of this war his attitude has been that of a man who was impressed with the

magnitude of the issues of the war and who was able to rise above all considerations of partisanship or of personal advancement; who has afforded to the world and to the Empire an example of a patriotic statesman who believed in British institutions and was prepared to do his best in defence of them. Need I recall the fact that during this last summer, when under the disadvantage of great physical pain and illness, he was game enough, he was British enough, if you like, to resume a speech in which he had to take a momentary rest, when most unfortunately, the hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) had missed his train and did not get to the meeting at all? Then I have noticed po one in the province of Ontario, not even a minister of the Crown, who has been more assiduous in season and out of season in attending patriotic meetings, than has my hon. friend from South- Renfrew (Mr. Graham), and in varying degrees we, the followers of my right hon. friend and his chief lieutenant, have nothing to regret in our record in this respect. Our attitude to-day is' what it has been throughout this war.

The major portion of the speech from the Throne is taken up with the expression of two sentiments on the part of the Government, of the Parliament and the pedple of Canada, sentiments which received admirable expression in the eloquent speech of my right hon. friend the Prime Minister this afternoon.

The speech in the first place asks us to express our admiration -for the efforts which have been made by our soldiers at the front along with the other soldiers of the Empire and of our Allies. We on this .side of the House desire to claim our full share of that admiration. Upon the fields of Festubert, St. Eloi and others too numerous to mention, these sons of Canada have, by -sacrifice of blood and of life, performed deeds of wthich the glory will never fade away. There is -no one on the opposite benches who admires their deeds more than we do.

The Speech expresses not only admiration, but what i-s much more-necessary at the present moment, and that is determination. And once more, Mr. Speaker, I desire to say that we here also claim our full share of the determination which is expressed in the Speech, that no effort shall be wanting on the part of Canada, so far as we can speak for any portion of it, to bring this war to a successful termination. Whether the blood that flows in our veins is English, or Scotch, or Irish, or Welsh, or Norwegian, or French,

aye, or even German, there are few Canadians to-day, Sir, who do not know in their heart of hearts that we live under a flag which, wherever it floats, spells liberty, which in this fight spells succour to the oppressed, help for the small -against the great, for the weak against the strong, that this flag to-day floats over a fight which is justified on the part of the Allies, if ever a fight was justified in this world. We on this side of the House hold these things as strongly as hon. gentlemen opposite, and in addition we hold no pessimistic v-iew-s as to the future. We have no shadow of a doubt, any more than hon. gentlemen opposite lhave, that this flag will finally float over a complete and dicisive victory, because above this flag stands the god of justice, liberty and truth.

On motion of Hon. T. C. Casgrain (Postmaster General) the debate was adjourned.

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INTERNAL ECONOMY COMMISSION.


Sir GEORGE FOSTER presented an approved Minute of Council appointing Hon. W. J. Roche, Honl J. D. Reid, Hon. A. E. Kemp and Hon. T. C. Ca-sgrain, a committee to act with the Speaker of the House as a commission under the provisions of the 11th chapter of the Revised Statutes of Canada, an Act respecting the House of Commons.


NAVAL SERVICE PAPERS.


Hon. J. D. HAZEN (Minister of Naval Service) presented: Copies of Orders in Council authorizing Regulations for the Department of Naval Service in accordance with Section 47, Chapter 43, 9-10 Edward VII, as follows: P. C. 2864, dated the 4th December, 1915, Payment of Separation Allowance in the case of Warrant Officers. P. C. 3009, dated 21st December, 1915, with reference to application of the Naval Discipline Act, etc., for the Government of the Naval Volunteer Force. P. C. 63-2422, dated 15th October, 1915, with reference to appointment of Assistant Paymasters in charge. P. C. 2267, dated 25th September, 1915, with reference to regulations for payment of " Detained Pay." , P. C. 93-2151, dated 17th September, 1915, with reference to allowances to officers and men employed on coding and decoding duties, etc. P. C. 1712, dated 21st July, 1915, with reference to scheme of pensions for officers and men of the Royal Canadian Naval Forces, etc. . P. C. 748, dated 13th April, 1915, with reference to institution of the Tatings of rangetaker first and second class in the Royal Canadian Navy. P. C. 58-1470, dated 24th June, 1915, with reference to increase in amount of Separation Allowance to a motherless child from 3s. to 5s. P. C. 85-1158, dated 20th May, 1915, with reference to revision of amounts payable on account of Separation Allowance to dependents of Royal Canadian Naval Permanent Ratings. P. C. 756, dated 13th April, 1915, with reference to payment of Allowances to officers of Ahe Royal Naval Canadian Volunteer Reserve, performance of duties which carry with them an Allowance to officers of the Royal Canadian Navy. On motion of Sir George Foster, the House adjourned at 9 p.m. Tuesday, January 18, 1916.


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January 17, 1916