April 10, 1916

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John Ewen Sinclair

Mr. SINCLAIE:

I am not joking about this. I think fish could be sent by parcel post, and that the business would grow up to be a very important branch of the service and promote the sale of fresh fish in the towns along the railway.

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Charles Eusèbe Casgrain

Mr. CASGEAIN:

It is done.

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John Ewen Sinclair

Mr. SINCLAIE:

I am told it is possible to do it in some kind of a package that would, of course, protect the other parcels and would be air-tight so as to keep the fish in good condition until it was delivered. We have a very poor express service for fresh fish, and, if the minister would undertake to give a special rate without surrounding it with those zones that make the parcel post of very little use to people who live in a distant province, I am sure the business would grow to be a most important branch of the service. It would also be profitable to the department, and it would be a great advantage to customers along the line, and to the fish trade.

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Charles Eusèbe Casgrain

Mr. CASGEAIN:

The proposal of my hon. friend is well worth looking into, but the maximum weight at present is eleven pounds.

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Duncan Graham

Mr. GEAHAM:

Every fisherman catches a fish that big.

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

To provide for that trade we would have to change the whole system, not only as to weight, but as to zones.

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LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

In regard to the zone system of parcel post, I am informed-I may be wrong-that one firm in Toronto has the privilege of using a car which is filled with goods that have been solid to its clients in various parts of Canada, and as the car travels from one zone to another that firm pays only the rate in that zone, thereby saving large amounts of money, but at the same time not giving the department the benefit of the distance. Does the minister know of any such case?

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

No. I am aware of a certain firm sending its catalogues by express to certain points and then distributing them by parcel post. It may also be that they send parcels by express to certain places outside of the zone and then send them by parcel post from the points where they arrive at, thereby saving a good deal of money. I cannot understand how we can prevent that, because any one is perfectly free to use the express companies, or even to hire a car to go from one zone to another.

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LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

I will tell my hon. friend that, in my judgment, he, as a lawyer of eminence, must know that a party cannot evade tl^e law in that way. Yo.u have created certain zones and you havie stipulated that in each zone there will be a certain rate, and from one point to an extreme point there will be a certain rate. If you give a big firm in Toronto or Montreal the privilege of using a car-

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

I beg my hon. friend's pardon. We do not give them that privilege; they have taken it.

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Rodolphe Lemieux

Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

I know, the car belongs to that firm, or it is rented from the railway company, and that firm uses that car to carry its catalogues and even its goods from one zone to another, and it distributes them in that way, the department thereby losing the benefit of the long distance rate to which it would toe entitled if the parcels were sent, say, from Montreal, or Toronto, to Winnipeg.

I say, that is evading the law. What would the hon. gentleman say, for instance, if, with the present war tax on letters, a resident of Niagara, Ontario, should cross the river and mail his letters from the United States, at the rate of two cents 172

instead of three cents? He could not say otherwise than that this was an evasion and violation of the law, and he would not allow such a thing. Is not that an analagous case to that of a firm which carries its goods by private car, thereby paying the rate of the local zone at each point? The department loses an enormous sum of money. I am informed that a certain firm-I will not name it, because I can only offer hearsay evidence- is sending its car from a certain point to the extreme boundaries of Canada, distributing its catalogue and its goods. That is not fair to the local merchants, and it is not fair to the department and the exchequer.

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

The problem is one that is engaging the attention of the department, but we find it impossible to check this action unless we amend the law. The law with regard to printed matter and parcels is not the same as with regard to letters. We have a monopoly in the sending of letters. A merchant cannot send a parcel of letters by express or by freight, but must use the mails, but we have no such monopoly in regard to parcels or printed matter. I may say that this same difficulty presents itself in the United States and in England, and they have not been able to solve the problem in either of those countries yet.

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LIB

George Perry Graham

Liberal

Mr. GRAHAM:

Has the hon. minister seen complaints that Canadians do what the ex-Postmaster General ,(Mr. Lemieux) lias stated with regard to posting their letters ? I

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

We have had complaints of people distributing their own letters, and we put a stop to that.

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LIB

George Perry Graham

Liberal

Mr. GRAHAM:

Some yeare ago, when the letter rate in Canada was three cents, a good deal of the postal business that ought to have been done at the border towns was carried to the other side of the line in handbags. It struck me that unless some arrangement were made with the United States, possibly with the war tax imposed, that practice might be renewed. I have some slight recollection of the department taking some action on that line.

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

We had some complaints of people who carried mail across the border, for instance, from Windsor to Detroit; but we charged a double rate when the letter arrived at its destination and put a stop to the practice. It is now almost completely done away with.

Mr. McCRANEY ; I would suggest to the Postmaster General that he should have the railway companies submit the proposed names of stations to his department before they are adopted. Some time ago, in my own riding, the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Company put in a station within the municipality of Asquith, which was the name also of the post office, and gave it a different name; and it is only with some considerable trouble that we had the name Asquith adopted as the name of the station for the Grand Trunk Pacific as for the Canadian Pacific. There was another instance in my constituency. The Canadian Pacific Railway had established a station under the name of BrodeTick. The village municipality, the school district, and the local telephone station have that name, and the merchants were accustomed to receive their mail under that name. The Canadian Pacific changed the name to St. Aldwyn's without conferring with the citizens of the town, and we had a great deal of trouble and correspondence with the Canadian Pacific-in fact I was obliged to bring it up in the House-before the company would adopt the name which they had at one time given and which the citizens themselves used. The railway companies seem to think they have the right to name communities, but, as a matter of fact, they have not; a community has the right to its own name as much as an individual has. I think the proceedings of the Grand Trunk in one case, and of the Canadian Pacific in the other, was of a very high-handed order. If the Post Office Department assumed the authority to name the stations- because the station later becomes the post office-it would 'be a very salutary change. Just to show the necessity for something of that kind, let me refer to the Canadian Pacific time-table, which bears every evidence of having the names of stations prepared in the land department of the railway itself at Montreal or some other point. I am bringing this to the attention of the minister just to show how little imagination can be shown in giving names to places. Before I went west I lived in the county of Halton and that county is only typical of the other counties in eastern Canada where there is some relation between the names of places and events and local conditions. We had four townships. Two of them were named Nelson and Trafalgar, and that naming was done, of course, during the Napoleonic wars. The two others bore

Indian names, Esquesing and Nassagaweya. Oakville, where I used to live at one time, of course showed that the town was built up in the oak forest on the lake shore; and the town of Milton, I suppose, was named after the founder's favourite poet. In Saskatchewan, between Kerrobert and La-combe, there are stations named Rural, Onward, Superb, Major, Fusilier, Court, Composer, Monitor, Concord, Loyalist, Veteran, Throne, Coronation, Federal, Fleet, Castor, Veldt. Those are all on one little line. I read some other names: General, Zenith, Unity, Provost, Czar, Horizon, Amulet, Viceroy, Landscape, Velor, Aneroid, Admiral, Consul, Senate.

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LIB
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George Ewan McCraney

Liberal

Mr. McCRANEY:

Well, it is not a big

place. Other names are: Expanse, Archive, Converge, Vantage, Holdfast, Liberty, Stalwart, Imperial, Amazon, Renown, Marquis, Conquest, Bounty, Sovereign, Fortune, Plenty, Druid, Primate, Vanguard, Success, Pennant, Sceptre, Empress, Majestic, Princess, Duchess, Countess. I cannot conceive the imagination of a man who would call places by such names as these. I bring this matter to the attention of the minister and suggest that when railway companies are adopting names for their stations a list should be submitted to the Postmaster General or to his department, where it could be gone through, because no community should be saddled for all time to come with such names as these, which show no more acquaintance with affairs than is to be found between the covers of a dictionary.

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LIB
LIB

April 10, 1916