Quite so, hut if he tells the whole truth it is not necessary for him to repeat it time after time as my hon. friend has' done. But I am not going to criticise my hon. friend for taking up the time he did in making his explanation, because it is the privilege of every member to take, within reason, the time he desires to express his views on the different public questions that arise from time to time, and it is for that reason I take this opportunity of saving a few words, -as a representative of a portion of the province of New Brunswick, on the subject now before the House. The Minister of -Labour (Mr. Crothers) I might add, might have done better if he had just quoted the volume and page number of Hansard containing his speech on these matters last session.
In ordinary times and under ordinary conditions the annual Budget of the Minister of Finance with its statement of the revenues and expenditure of the past year and its estimate of the expenditure for the ensuing year is not of very deep interest. It affords, however, an opportunity for hon. members of this House to express their views on almost any matter that may be of interest to their several constituencies or to the Dominion as a whole. But the Budget during the last three years of this terrible conflict now waging in Europe has been of more than ordinary interest to the members of this House and the country as a whole. This Parliament meets under very changed conditions. The people of this Dominion since Confederation have been divided into two great political parties-the high-protection narty, and the low-tariff party, or tariff for revenue only, with a general grading down of the tariff, as the situation warrants, almost to a free trade basis. To show that my right hon. leader (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) was true to his pre-election pledges in 1896, he had two of his distinguished and representative colleagues in his Government, in the years 1910-11 enter into negotiations with our American neighbours the result of which was a reciprocity agreement. If that agreement had been carried into effect it would have practically established free trade in food products at least between these two great countries. But that agreement was fought -persistently and viciously in this Parliament during the session of 1911 and when the Government of that day appealed to the country on the twenty-first of September of that year they were defeated, not on that issue, but on other issues. By the defeat of the Government that measure, which "would
have been of incalculable benefit to the people of Canada, was annulled and became of no effect. The people of Canada were debarred from learning by actual experience, the very great advantages which would have accrued to them had that reciprocity pact been carried into effect.
The hon.' member for Springfield (Mr. Richardson) the other night, in discussing some matters before this House, referred to my right hon. leader and criticised him because he did not carry into effect his pre-election promises when he came into office in 1896. It seemed to me that my hon. friend was seeking for excuses to explain his own political meanderings and ramblings rather than establishing any charge against my right hon. friend.
Those of us who had the privilege of seats in this House during the historic session of last year cannot fail to be impressed with the situation as we see it in Canada to-day. Quite a number of hon. gentlemen who occupied seats on this side of the House and gave loyal support to the party lead by my right hon. friend (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) saw fit, conscientiously I have no doubt, to withdraw their support from the Liberal party on the stand which our leader took upon the question of the Military Service Act, better known as conscription. I have no fault to find with the hon. gentlemen who took that view. As a matter of fact, they were strong conscriptionists [DOT] themselves. They have proved their faith in conscription by allowing themselves to be conscripted without question or murmur to different positions in the service of this Dominion. When my right hon. friend, the leader of the Government (Sir Robert' Borden) attempted to form what ie known as his Union Government, he wended his way to Toronto and there met my hon. friend the President of the Privy Council (Mr. Rowell). That hon. gentleman bad, early in the campaign apparently realized the duty devolving upon him to support the Military Service Act or conscription measure. He fell a willing sacrifice to conscription himself and said: While I have urged young men to go to the front, and while I believe we should force young men to go to fight the battles of the country, I am quite willing to go to the front benches of the Treasury, occupy a seat there and fight the people's battles, but of course I must have a salary of $7,000 per year, and have all the perquisites attaching to the position. It is also stated that the hon. gentleman insisted on his particular friends in the city of Toronto being
provided for and getting good jobs in the Government services and I have no doubt that condition has been carried out. He willingly and patriotically came forward and said, "HeTe I am; take me." The next gentleman that the right hon. gentleman appealed to was the hon. the Minister of Customs (Mr. Sifton) who, after making due apology and repentance for his action at the celebrated Winnipeg convention last summer, enlisted and was at once made chief recruiting officer in the safety first election Union battalion, better known as the Union Government. After he had accepted the position of returning officer, he had little trouble in persuading the hon. the Minister of Immigration and Colonization (Mr. Calder) that it was his duty to get into uniform and1 training. True, there was not actual front trench work then but it was necessary to have a man properly trained for service after the war when immigrants would again flow into Canada and he fell a willing sacrifice.
In the meantime, the hon. the Minister oif Militia and Defence (Major-General Mew-burn) and the hon. the Minister of Marine and Fisheries (Mr. Ballantyne), realizing that colossal mistakes had been made in the past, decided it was not in the public interest to longer continue to hide their lights under a bushel, and chose the Departments of Militia and Defence and Marine and Fisheries respectively to be the candlesticks upon which they would place the light they had to 'illuminate the dark political and mismanaged recesses of these departments.
Little trouble had so far been experienced, but the Maritime Provinces had to be reckoned with and the name of the present the hon, Minister of Public Works (Mr. Carvell), who had the reputation of a dangerous foe and who had undoubtedly locked within his breast and desk reams of most damaging information against the different departments of the Government, as was proved by the results of the investigation of the affairs of the Militia Department by a Royal Commission the year previous, was added to the list of new ministers. This doughty erstwhile Government opponent, whose patriotic offer to go to the front in the early days of the war had been refused for reasons one can only guess, was pressed into service, and he in the interests of his country at this time decided, if not to completely bury the hatchet and forget the past shortcomings of the Government, to at least place them in cold storage for a time-not that their value would be enhanced, but
that they might be preserved for personal use or the country's benefit in future.
The only obstacle in the way of the hon. gentleman's entry into the Union Government was thait he preferred the Department of Public Works to that of Marine and Fisheries. This was overcome by the occupant of that office being forced to realize that he was best fitted to reorganize and conduct the Department of Marine and Fisheries that had been left in somewhat of a chaotic condition by the sudden, and, of course, unexpected resignation of its former head, after having been conscripted to the position of Chief Justice of the Appellate Court of New Brunswick. I am bound to say, however, Mr. Speaker, that the present Minister of Public Works has shown his worth in his department and he is the only member of the Government who has evinced a desire to cut down expenditures and to do house-cleaning a3 he always did when he was on this side of the House.
The hon. gentleman has intimated that the reason why the Minister of Public Works was selected for a place in the Cabinet was, that he held certain dangerous isearets within his breast, and that it was a means of quieting him. Will the hon. gentleman be a little more explicit in that regard?
I have taken the responsibility of making the statement I did, and the hon. gentleman will be. good enough to draw his own conclusibris, either from my remarks as he has heard them, or as he. reads them in Hansard to-morrow.
Now, Sir, the Government was not yet fully constituted. There was a province remaining to be considered, and that was the old reliable province of Nova Scotia. After Hon. Mr. Murray had consulted with his friends and decided that he could not well be spared from his duties in that province, the Acting Minister of Finance (Mr. A. K. Maclean) was induced to join the Cabinet. His demand for responsible office was not so pronounced as that of other members of the Cabinet, provided, of course, the question, of salary was not overlooked, and there was provided for the hon. gentleman the chairmanship of some committee. I do not know just what the duties df that committee are, but doubtless the hon. gentleman is eminently qualified to discharge them with distinction.
The Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Crerar) who is a member of the House, also willingly allowed himself to be conscripted for the Cabinet, and I have not yet heard
him making any appeal to any local tribunal to he relieved of his duties. Whether he may be forced to do so or not, I cannot say, but I am sure we on this side are willing to give him a fair trial and if he continues ae he has commenced, I personally, shall have no fault to find with him.
In the position of 'Solicitor General we now find an old and very respectable member of the Opposition (Mr. Guthrie) in whom we had very great confidence. He also saw fit to withdraw from this side and accept a position of emolument in the Government that is now controlling the destinies of iCanada. I have no doubt that a number of others would have been quite willing to accept office, if the opportunity to do so had been vouchsafed to them.
I have never yet had occasion to withdraw from the party that [ have always supported, and so long as they continue to advocate the policy which I believe to be in the interest of the country I shall not forsake them. I am not finding fault with those gentlemen who retired from this side, but when I am convinced that the policy of my party is wrong, then, I may tell my hon. friend, I shall have no hesitation in saying so and taking such steps as I believe to be in the interest of the country. That is the duty and the privilege of every hon. gentleman.
Now, Sir, the Union Government was formed, they went to the people and received a mandate from them. Let me impress upon the Acting Minister of Finance that I do not believe it was in the interest of the country that for the purpose of forming a Union Government the necessity existed for creating five or six new Cabinet positions, at additional expense to the people, at the present time. If hon. gentlemen opposite had the interest of this country at heart, as they wanted to make the people believe they had during the last session of Parliament, if it were in the public interest that a Union Government should be formed, and that polities should be dropped for the time being, in my opinion it would have been a more truly patriotic course for a sufficient number of ministers to have retired from the old Government, and to have replaced them by Liberals from this side of the House, and to do that without causing any extra expense to the country. Economy should be the watchword of the Government, but by
adding these additional departments to the administration of public affairs,. the Government have augmented by between a million and a half and two'million dollars the expenditures entailed in the carrying on of public business. Such a large additional outlay the Government were not justified in undertaking at the present time, when the people are being taxed, and practically bled white, to maintain the ordinary and capital expenditure of Canada, to say nothing of the enormous cost of carrying on its share of the burdens of war.
The advantage of the Union Government has yet to be demonstrated, and so faT as the new members of that Government are concerned, no criticism can ibe offered on account of past acts, because they were not a party to those expenditures. I have no criticism to offer of the gentlemen now on the Treasury benches who went from this side of the House. That must be deferred until they come before Parliament to give an account of their stewardship and to explain the conduct of their departments, as they will have to do next year.
The Acting Minister of Finance in his Budget speech announced that the revenues of the Dominion during the fiscal year 1917-18 amounted to $258,000,000, of which, he told us, $203,000,000 were required to meet capital and ordinary expenditures, leaving $55,000,000 to go towards war expenditure during the past year. While $55,000,000 is a fairly large sum of money, yet, if we may judge by the criticisms in which the bon. gentleman himself indulged with respect to past financial statements, that sum is not nearly enough to meet our requirements. In 1913-14, the financial year immediately preceding the war, our total revenue was $163,000,000. If out of $163,000,000 Canada was able to carry on her business affairs and meet her outlays in both ordinary and capital expenditure, I say that during these times there is no reasonable or fair excuse that $203,000,000 is needed to pay our annual disbursement. If the Government had economized as they should have done, surely we would have been able to get along without larger expenditures than in the year 1913-14. And if that had been done, instead of having $55,000,000 to pay towards war expenditures this year, we would have had $94,825,000. Under these conditions we should have been able to save a larger amount than $55,000,000 by paring down our expenditures on public works and civil government all along the line. I wonder if I may have the privilege of reading to this House a few lines from a 96
speech made by an hon. gentleman whose word, I think, should nave some weight with the present Government, and, at least, upon the present Acting Minister of Finance (Mr. A. K. Maclean). In a speech delivered in this House oil April 24, 1917, a year ago, criticising the Budget of that date, the following language was used:
Now it is a fair question to put to this House and to the country: With our expenditures on war account, great as they are, and with this country so prosperous, whether it is satisfactory that we should have contributed out of our revenue toward that expenditure only $60,000,000 or less? Are we now doing our full duty or are we leaving too much to the future to pay? I believe that we are borrowing too much and paying too little.
There are facts which should be carefully considered in this connection. After the war, we shall have a national debt of from $1,300,000,000 to $1,500,000,000, with charges for interest and pensions approximating, as I have already pointed out, $100,000,000 a year, which must be paid and for which the people must be taxed. We shall have a smaller supply of capital, interest rates will be higher, and the productive capacity of the country will be less. The transition from a state of peace to a state of war, was made easier in our case by the absorption of men into the army, but the transition in the reverse direction will be complicated not only by the discharge of munition workers from . their employment, but in addition there will be the demobilization of the army. These are important facts and should be considered in discussing the question whether we should or should not now tax ourselves more in order to pay a greater portion of our war obligations than we are paying. We must further remember that the immense expenditure for war which is being added to our debt is unproductive. It leaves us richer in ideals and in history, it is true, but in a monetary sense the expenditure is unproductive. If the amount which we are obliged to borrow for war purposes were expended in the construction of railways, the development of agriculture, and the establishment of industrial enterprises, it would add to the productive power of industry and trade thus making it relatively easier to meet interest and sinking fund charges upon the debt. With these things in mind, is the Government policy with respect to taxation for war expenditure the correct one? Is it one which is approved by the best judgment of our people? Are we not handing down to posterity the obligation to pay too largely for patriotic performances?
Taking the position, as I do, .that we are not presently contributing sufficiently to war expenditures, I realize that hon. gentlemen opposite will naturally enquire what suggestion hon. members on this side would make, what policy they would propound. In the first place, I assert, and this is but a repetition of what we on this side have said on every Budget deliverance of the Minister of Finance since the beginning of the war, there should be further retrenchment in civil expenditure so as' to leave a greater amount to apply to war expenditures, thus minimizing the additions to our debt.
That was the statement made by a gentleman who occupied a seat in this House. He pointed out distinctly, when $60,000,000
was put aside for war expenditure for that year, that that sum was not enough. We have had a lesser amount put aside during the past fiscal year, because only $55,000,000 was saved out of a revenue of $258,000,000. In spite of that fact, the hon. gentleman from this side of the House who made that criticism of the Budget of last year is the very gentleman who brought down the Budget this year as Acting Minister of Finance. I want to ask that hon. gentleman frankly, and my hon. friends on the other side of the House, in what position is he? Was he right when he made that criticism, from this very chair, I believe, last year, or is he right to-day in bringing down a financial statement such as he has and asking us to vote a large amount of money, while giving practically no promise for the coming year of any definite amount being put aside for war expenditure? He does say, however, that he hopes there will be some reasonable amount left out of next year's appropriations and the revenue he expects to derive from taxation he is now bringing into force for paying off some of the war expenditure.
The Acting Minister of Finance has suggested that he is making some changes in the taxes. Taxation is necessary. Money is required to carry on this war, and money must be got by taxation of some sort. My hon. friend has started in by putting a special tax upon tea and tobacco. I want to say to him frankly, and to put myself on record, that I am absolutely opposed to that taxation on these two articles. In the first place, it brings in only a very small amount of revenue-by his own estimate I think $3,000,000. To-day, tea on the table of the labourer or of the rich man is a necessity, and tobacco, to a very gieat extent, is the same. I grant you that on cigars and cigarettes, and possibly on high-priced tobaccos, a substantial tax might very well be levi'ed. With that I find no fault, because I am one who believes that taxation should be so adjusted that we could pay more of our war expenditure as we go along and not leave so much to be paid by those who come after us. But I want to suggest to my hon. friend that, instead of putting this small tax on tea, which would only net the comparatively small amount of $3,000,000, he might have tried another means. I want to refer briefly to the amount of income tax that he proposes to put upon the people. I am sure that every hon. gentleman on' this side of the House will agree, and will very gladly congratulate my hon. friend, if he is responsible, for increasing, in the very small de-
gree that he ha&, the income tax. We have advocated from this side of the House ever since the compiencement of the ' war that an income tax should be placed upon the rich people of our country who are receiving large incomes. They are the people who should be very thoroughly taxed, and taxed until they feel it. I submit to my hon. friend that in the small increase he is placing upon the rich men of this country, they are not being taxed to an extent that they will feel. Let me refer to a few of the incomes on which my hon. friend proposes to increase the tax to some extent. I start with the income of $10,000. At the outset, I want to say that I care not how people have lived in the past or how extravagant they have been, or what city they live in, but, to-day, when the Dominion of Canada and her sons are sacrificing everything under Heaven, no man should be left with an income of more than $10,000 a year to live on.
I go further and say that no man with an income of $10,000 or $20,000 up to $100,000 should be allowed to receive additional wages or profits during the war. The Government should allow him a fair annual living expenditure and take the remainder of his income for war purposes. Even then he would nolt be sacrificing nearly as much as the young man who is sent to the front to fight for the protection of the property from which the large income is derived. The tax should be made sufficiently high to cause the man of large income to feel that it really means something. For instance, the hard-hearted Acting Minister of Finance says to the man living in St. John, whose income is. $10,000: I am taking $300 from you and leaving you the mere pittance of $9,700 to live on for a year. The man in Halifax-where the people are richer than they are in St. John-with an income of $20,000, is left only $18,618 to get along with during the year. The man of $30,000 income is left with only $27,298; the income of $50,000 is reduced to a mere $44,218; $75,000 to $63,000; $100,000 to. $82,000; $200,000 to $150,000, and-so on up to $400,000 and $500,000. I am not finding fault because the young [DOT]men are taken, nor am I criticising the Military Service Act. But consider the-matter from this viewpoint: a young man appears before a medical board and is examined in respect to his eyesight, hearing, chest measurement and general physical fitness. The Government then says to him: yon are physically fit; you go-to the trenches and fight for us at $1.10 a day. Would it not
be just as fair to have an auditor examine the accounts of the millionaire, so that he may be instructed: You have no son to go to the front, but Mr. T's son has gone; you must deliver up some of your wealth to help pay the cost of sending the boys to the front? It is only fair that the rich man should make sacrifice as well as the poor man or the man who goes to the front. The small increase proposed in income tax is not yet sufficient. I can see hon. gentlemen on the other side who last year made this chamber ring with their denunciations of the Government because they did not put on a larger income tax. I sincerely hope that they will have sufficient influence with the Union Government to induce them greatly to increase the tax on the incomes of rich people, and to do so during the present session.
occupies a position in the present Government, will stand'toy what he said last year. I am going to read only a few lines of his speech, and I would ask my hon. friends to read all that he said in regard to this question This is what he said:
And then take the trade returns. Last year we imported altogether, of agricultural implements and parts thereof, everything which you can possibly imagine, including scythes and hand rakes and all the little things used on the farm, only $1,6713,000 worth. I have again no idea how many million dollars worth are consumed in Canada, but there must be a great many millions, tens of millions of dollars worth of farm machinery consumed and yet we imported only $1,673,000 worth in Canada on which the Government received only $309,000 in duty, a mere bagatelle.
Imagine what a trifling amount. During' the year 1916 we received only $309,000 in duties paid upon agricultural implements imported into 'Canada, while we used tens of millions of dollars worth of agricultural implements. But what we on this side of the House lay stress on is the fact that the consumer who uses agricultural implements has to pay the amount of the duty on these goods when manufactured in this country. The hon. gentleman goes on to say:
And yet, 'Sir, we paid from 12 per cent to 17 i per cent and 25 per cent on all these millions andi tens of millions of dollars1 worth of machinery used in Canada. We paid this, not to the Government, but to a little coterie of manufacturers in Ontario, and that same little coterie of manufacturers in Ontario were able to sell 'to the rest of this world practically $4,00'0,000 worth of these same articles. The exact figures are $3,854,000.
Those are the words of a gentleman who now occupies a seat in the Union Government, and I have no doubt, if the hon.
- gentlemen who sit behind him and who are and must be in favour of agricultural implements coming into this country free, could refer him to the speech he made last year in this Parliament, he would give their suggestions careful consideration and give them some encouragement that in the, near future this action might be taken.
I know nothing in the rules of the House which obliges an hon. member quoting from a speech to give the name of the speaker. The hon. gentleman has quoted the page of Hansard from which the hon. member for Frontenac (Mr. Edwards) can get the information.
The hon. gentleman will, no doubt, as he is interested in the paragraph I have just read, look up Hansard and read carefully and fully the whole speech, and I know he will be very much impressed by the remarks made by the hon. gentleman whose words I have quoted.
I want to congratulate the Minister of Marine and Fisheries (Mr. Ballantyne) upon the action he has taken in regard to embarking on a shipbuilding programme in Canada. I regret exceedingly that, the Government have, during the. past four years, been absolutely silent and dormant in regard to this great industry. I well remember the gentleman who represented the city of St. John in the last Parliament, hour by hour urging upon the Government to embark on a shipbuilding programme. 1 am sure if the whole time he consumed in this way were added together, it would run into weeks of steady argument and talk, and yet the Government turned a deaf ear. Two years ago he told them that the transportation question would be practically the deciding issue in this great war, and he urged upon the Government to embark on a shipbuilding programme, ais we had the materials and the opportunity. He stated that we could buy or construct shipbuilding plants, and he urged upon them the necessity of immediate action. Yet during all those months not a hand was turned, until the Minister of Marine and Fisheries came down this session with a policy of establishing a shipbuilding industry in Canada.
I am sure every man who. has the interest of his country at heart must realize that is the proper thing to do. While I sincerely trust the war will be over before the ships now under way can toe turned out, we shall still require a great amount of shipping for transportation purposes after the war, and I trust that my hon. friend's policy may be crowned with success, and that in the future we shall have steel ships built in this Dominion sailing over the seven seas. I regret' that my hon. friends on the other side of the House have not been
able to influence the minister to start a shipbuilding plant in the Maritime Provinces. There we have the men, the material, and everything that is necessary for successful shipbuilding. In days gone by there was no place in the Dominion from the Atlantic to the Pacific that was richer in opportunities for the shipbuilding industry than the ports of the Maritime Provinces, and I sincerely trust that the minister, after studying this question carefully will reach the conclusion that there is a splendid opening there for shipbuilding.
I sincerely believe that every man, woman and child in this Dominion is heart and soul in this war. We are all willing and anxious to do everything we can to win this war, but naturally there are differences of opinion as to the best things to be done, and that, I suppose, is the reason for so many different suggestions being made in this debate as to the taxation methods and other matters. We have been told to save, serve and sacrifice. If we will study those words carefully and apply them each to his own individual case, I am sure it would be very much better than to apply them to the other fellow. The rich men with large incomes do not require to save, but they should be forced to serve and sacrifice. The acting Minister of Finance the other day, in introducing his Budget, spoke of the deep feeling of earnestness throughout the country, and commended the patriotism of our people who subscribed so handsomely to the Victory Loan last year. While I do not wish to detract in the slightest degree from the loyalty and patriotism of the people who subscribed, I say it is no very great proof of patriotism for a man with $50,000 in the bank drawing three per cent interest to withdraw it and invest in a war loan paying six per cent, when the security, moreover, has the whole resources of the Dominion behind it. The Government, instead of borrowing this money from these people at such a high rate of interest, should take a little of it if these wealthy men are not willing to sacrifice, so that they will be made to pay a fair share of the .money necessary to carry on this. war. If we only will examine ourselves we will see that we are all more or less selfish. The other night one hon. gentleman, who no doubt thinks himself a high-souled patriot, one of the most patriotic people in the Dominion, said that the Cockshutlts had done everything possible to win the war, and no doubt he believed it. But in his very next breath he said that within twenty-'four hours of tractors being put on the free list, in the interests of greater production and to help win this war, he had a delegation on the way to Ottawa to protest against any such action. Why? Was it because he thought the Government were not sincere in. their efforts to win this war? No,. It was because he feared its influence on the industry in which he was engaged. I speak with all due respect to my hoo. friend because if our hearts were searched to-night I have no
10 p.m. doubt we should find many Cockshutts among us, who would take the same course were our interests affected. It is as natural as it is to breathe for a man to stand up for his rights, and when his particular industry is interfered with he will naturally rise in protest. That is a reason, I contend, -why the Government should come down with a strong hand. Now is their opportunity. We have now a Government, we are told, from which politics has been divorced, and which is carrying on the affairs of this country in what they believe to be the best interests of our people. Here is their opportunity, then, to do away with all political interference such as has been going on for some time.
The Acting Minister of Finance said that the Union Government had abolished political patronage. I sincerely hope he is right, but I am afraid he has not been on the penitent bench long enough to realize he may be, mistaken as to. the outcome o.f what he thinks is Civil Service reform and the abolition of political patronage. When this Union Government was formed some members of the Borden Government had to give place to the new members. The Minister of the Interior in that Government was waited upon and was willing to step out provided he got an equally good position. So he was made Chairman of the Civil Service Commission. Another gentleman from my own* province, when asked to retire, also professed his willingness provided he got a good position. So he was made Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the province of New Brunswick. I think the only member of the Borden Cabinet who retired without getting some position almost as lucrative as that of a minister of the Crown was the ex-Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr.. Cochrane), but I understand he is still hoping that when the railways of this country have been nationalized he will secure the very honourable and lucrative position of chairman o,f the commission that will operate the system.
I have trespassed longer on the time of the House than I had intended, particularly after the Minister of Labour had lectured us so severely for taking up the time of the House, but I sincerely trust that when he remembers I have not occupied more than fifteen minutes of the time of the House this session he will forgive me for speaking at such length to-night.
It will be my pleasure-I believe, my duty -to give to this Government all the support that will be in the interest of the country to give it in connection with the very great and grave questions and responsibilities with which it is faced. I realize as fully as any one what these responsibilities are. I trust they will be successful in working out the very difficult and knotty problems that arise in ^connection with the questions which are engaging their attention. I have no desire to take any part in any party or petty criticism of their acts. I sincerely trust that they will realize more this year than the Government did last year the very great importance of the responsibilities resting on them and will see to it, when the country is asked to bear such a heavy lead of taxation to assist in carrying on this war, that they themselves set an example by practising rigid economy as well as preaching it.
I do not admit either part of the hon. member's statement at all, because I understand that the Liberal party did not remove the duty in 1897, they did not get busy until 1907. That is my understanding of the fact, and I think I am right. The hon. gentleman said that in addition to corn and cream separators, there were other changes made. Yes, there were some other changes made in 1907. The duty on cattle and sheep was increased from 20 to 25 per cent by the Liberals. The duty on meats, poultry, lard and tallow was left just as it was in the tariff of 1894. The Liberal party reduced the duty on eggs from 5 cents to 3 cents a dozen, .although the duty on the American side was 5 cents against our eggs. The Liberal party left th'e duty on butter and cheese the same as it was, at 4 cents and 3 cents respectively, although the United States duty was 6 cents on each of these articles. The Liberal party increased the duty on tomatoes, and on cabbages and onions; they put 10 cents a bushel extra duty on beans and 5 cents a bushel on peas. The Liberals also, in 1907, increased the duty on potatoes from 15 cents to 20 cents a bushel, and even that was 5 cents lower than the American duty against our potatoes. When the duty was raised on potatoes from 15 to 20 cents a bushel,did any one .hear any great noise from the hon. member for Prince Edward Island (Air. Read)? Not that I heard of. Did any one see any tears running down his bronzed and weather-beaten face because they had increased the duty on potatoes? Not that we have ever known of. The hon. gentleman at that time, and others who sit on the opposite side, and Who at the present moment are great free traders when potatoes are in question, had not a word to say during all those years that the Liberal party kept the duty on potatoes and actually increased it when they made a change. Was that a step in the direction of free trade? No. But it was accepted, and accepted cheerfully, by those hon. gentlemen who laid aside their great principle?' very readily when party expediency called for it, when their party leader said: You must take this and accept it. Then they had not a word to say about free trade. They tied their free trade principles up into a bundle and conveniently tucked them
away. Even when an added duty was put on potatoes, there was not a whimper from any of these gentlemen, not even the hon. member for Brome.
But the hon. member for Brome paid his respects principally to agricultural implements and it is in regard to agricultural implements that I desire to give a little past history. The hon. gentleman has said that the acting Minister of Finance has not yet had time to dissipate the sound economic views which he held on the other side of the House, that he has not been long enough on this side to be contaminated * entirely with the protectionist doctrine.
He, and other hon. gentlemen on the other side, have spoken of the sound', economic views which the Acting Minister of Finance learned when he was on that-side. What were they? Well, in 1871, the Liberal party deplored the fact that Canada was dependent upon foreign countries for manufactured goods and .said: " It is our duty to foster our national industries." That strikes me as pretty strong protectionist doctrine. In 1876 the present leader of the Opposition (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) said:
It is asserted by many and assumed by more that free trade is a Liberal principle and protection a Conservative principle. If I were in England I would' be a free trader, but I am a Canadian born .and resident here and I think we require protection.
In 1878 his policy was "tariff for revenue" ; in 1887, "commercial union"; in 1891, "unrestricted reciprocity"; in 1893, " free trade as in England." In 1895 and 1896 the Liberal party came out with blood in their eye; nothing short of complete destruction of protection would satisfy them. They said: We will cut off the head of protection and trample on its body. And these hon. gentlemen who hack up that party learned sound economic views, we are told, from leaders of the Liberal party on the other side of the House. Why, those leaders were changing their views practically every day.
It has been known for years that there are as many fiscal policies on the Liberal side as there are Liberals; each one has a fiscal policy of his own. The member for Cape Breton North and Victoria (Mr. McKenzie) will speak very loudly of free trade till you touch something in Cape Breton North- and then he shies off to one side. So it is with other hon. gentlemen from different parts of the country: When their own district is affected, they want protection. They cannot and never have been able to see this matter from the standpoint of Canada as a whole. The Liberal party has been an
That is, agricultural implements.
free of duty ; but I must frankly say to them that we do not think that it is fair. Like all others they must be prepared to give and take; they must be prepared to bear their share of the burdens of the country.
And so on. He then proceeded to say that the duty, which was 171 per cent, had been reduced to 15 per cent. The then hon. member for Dundas, Mr. Broder, put this *question to the Minister of Finance of the *day. You can see the reason why he put the question:
Mr. Broder: Is there any change to be made in the valuation for duty?
Mr. Broder was a farmer who thought and read and who knew what had been done on the previous occasion, and naturally he put this question. What was the answer given?
Mr. Fielding: Our negotiations have not
touched the question of valuation; that must be left to the operation of the customs authorities of the two countries.
And so they intended at that time, with the support of hon. gentlemen like the hon. members for Brome and lYestmorland in this House supporting them, if they possibly could, to pull the wool over the eyes 1 of the people of this country, making the farmers believe that they were free traders and were moving in the direction of free trade, while at the same time they were holding out the glad hand to the manufacturers, who, of course, were the source of their election fund. That was the situation in regard to agricultural implements. I do not blame the hon. members from Western Canada one particle ' for asking foT free agricultural implements. Everybody understands the position taken by hon. gentlemen opposite on this particular occasion. They have to throw something before the public, and they think this will be catchy out in the West. But this is not the time to tinker with the tariff. It would, in my judgment, be absolutely impossible, while the war is in progress to arrange a fiscal policy for this country which we could be sure would be perfectly satisfactory after the war had terminated. We are passing through great changes. Our tariff will necessarily, to a greater or less extent, be .affected after the war is over by the position taken by our neighbours to the South and by the position taken by other countries. I do not believe any man is in a position to .say what the fiscal policy of this country .should be after the war is over. We shall then have to meet changed conditions that have been brought about by this war, and so far as I am concerned, while I have strong views in regard to protection, while I believe in protection for a country like Canada, I have an open mind as to -What should be done after the war is over in dealing with the duty on agricultural implements or on anything eFse. II am a believer in protection because I represent a farming community, because I represent a constituency which is as strictly rural as perhaps any constituency in Canada. In my constituency I have not a single incorporated village. I am in favour of protection for the farmers of this country because, every year that goes by. science has more and more annihilated distance; science had brought the countries of .this world closer together. We now reckon distance in time, not in miles, and our competitors are brought closer to us to-dav than they ever were before. Do
you mean to tell me it is fair that a farmer in tile province of Ontario, who has to spend thousands of dollars in building expensive barns and stables in which to house his stock; who for five and isix months of the year is under the expense of feeding that stock, awaiting the opening of the next season; who, during that time is not making a. dollar out of this stock which is a bill of expense to him, should be placed on an equality, his protective duty being removed, and obliged to compete with farmers from the Argentine Republic and from certain parts of the United States where they have not the climatic disadvantages which we have? A protective duty is, in my estimation, the only means of equalizing conditions which are made unequal by climatic conditions.
I do not think that I would be doing my duty if I did not express' in 'a few words my opinion in regard to another matter. We have in this country men of different races and different creeds. We have our differences, and no doubt will continue to have them. But I, for one, do not despair of unity in Canada in the days to come. Why, Sir, in England they have been working for a thousand years rectifying mistakes, smoothing out wrongs, and adjusting difficulties, and they are not free from dissension and strife over there yet. But who will say that progress has not been made in England? No one, I venture to say. Progress has been made in that country, and at. this moment England is recognized as the leader of that world democracy which had its origin in and which circles around her to-day in the fight for human liberty on the battlefields of Flanders.. We have our differences here, and our differences, in my judgment, are due to a great extent to political cowardice. They are due to the fact that so-called statesmen in this country, place, and have placed, political party expediency ahead of the future good of this country. We have had too much compromise in this country. We have often heard it preached that compromise is the proper way to deal with differences in this country-compromise, compromise. Compromise is illogical. It is an invitation to future trouble; that is all it is. A question is never settled until it is settled right, and I do not believe in the compromise which has taken place in this country. By a system of compromise we have encouraged people in this country to carry on a propaganda here which is nothing less than seditious and treasonable.
If we are going to have unity we must
teach all races that no one race in this country is going to dominate, that all must obey the laws, that if they want to share in the privileges this country offers they must share in the responsibilities this country places upon them. And I repeat here to-day what I have said on former occasions in this House, that it strikes me as disgraceful that men should be allowed in this time of trouble and stress to maintain their rank in the militia of Canada who have' been a disgrace to the uniform they wear because of the seditious utterances they have been allowed to make. Compromise is not the way to deal with a man like that. There is only one of two things to do with a traitor: either put him behind the bars, or put him with his back to the wall and shoot him.
There is another thing I wish to raise-my voice against. There has been too much compromise in regard to- the press;, of this country. Newspapers in the Dominion of Canada, and notably in the province of Quebec, have been allowed to- preach treason day after day, week after week, and year after year since this war started. Those ' are the people who are largely responsible for the situation down in that province, a situation which does it no credit, and which in my humble judgment is- unfair to the habitant and to the ordinary people of Quebec, who I think would show themselves to be made of the same timber as the men who made name and fame- for themselves at Courcelette if they had not been wrongly led by certain men and certain newspapers.
I say we are not doing our duty as public men. if we do not raise our voice against any sort of compromise in dealing with these people. I for one have no use for that kind of compromise. In my judgment there is only one way to deal with them, and that is to deal with them in snch a way as to silence them- forever.
Just one word more. An hon. gentleman speaking in this House the other day alluded; to the Orange Order in the Dominion of Canada as the Yellow Peril. Do we need- to be afraid of that Yellow Peril in this country? Let me tell the hon. gentleman who spoke that way the other day that there have gone over to France more members of the Orange Order in Canada than the whole province of Quebec has enlisted from 1914 down; to the- present time. That is. a fact. If these men are a menace to this- country, then I ask him what can be said of the mem im the constituency he represents. I resent anything of that kind. Me have too many men connected with
the Orange Order in this country, who lie in Flanders to-day, having given their lives i-or the great cause, and I for one will resent on the floor of this House any aspersions on an Order which not only in this war >but in all former wars has always shown a loyalty to British institutions and to British principles which hon. gentlemen opposite who criticise the Order might very well emulate.
I have not dealt with public finances to any great extent, and I shall not do more now than to- express my very great gratification at the speech delivered by the Acting Minister of Finance (Mr. A. K. Maclean), which indicates that the people of Canada, so far as their financial (burdens are concerned, are prepared to do their full part in carrying on thisi war
Mr. FRANCHlS N. McCREA (-Sherbrooke):
I arise at this late hour to express my views, not at too great length I hope, but whatever time is required that I shall have to take. The question under debate is the expenditure and revenues of this country. I had not the pleasure of being in the House when the Acting Minister of Finance (Mr. A. K. Maclean) brought down the Budget, and I have not had time since to go 'into it thoroughly. I have no very eerious comments to make on it. Taxation is something that nobody likes, whether he be rich or poor, but taxation under the present circumstances is something we cannot avoid and we may as well accept it cheerfully.
There are two things in a Budget which always interest the people. The first is that all taxes should be equally apportioned so that every person bears his share according to his circumstances. It has been said by some and by an hon. gentleman on this side of the House only this evening, that we should not tax tea and coffee, that we should not tax the poor man. The rich-man, in his opinion, should bear the whole burden. If I understand him aright he argued that the poor man and the poor man's sons were doing the fighting, and therefore the rich man should pay the 'bills. As he belongs to the middle -class 'I presume he would be exempt from both. I do not look at it that way at all. This war is the nation's war and every man, rich and poor, should bear his fair share of the burden. This should be demanded if only as a matter of principle, that every one may realize that the country is at war. I admit that the rich man is the best -able to pay and I think under the present taxation proposals he will have to pay. So long as
the taxes are evenly distributed, whether they be high or low I have no fault to find. Personally, I would rather favour high taxation at the present time. The country is prosperous. There is an immense amount of money coming in. Everybody is prosperous, the farmer, the labourer and every one else. When the people have money is the time to provide for paying the bills. There is a time coming after the war when probably the country will not be as prosperous as it is at present and we will be less able to meet the taxation that will be imposed. Consequently, I would not object to high taxation to meet a large part of the expenditures which have been made for the defence of our country, providing every person bears his equal proportion according to his means.
I have no objection to taxation providing the money is legitimately, properly and economically spent. That lis quite as important as tlje imposition of taxes. We must provide the amount of money necessary to meet such expenses as cannot be avoided, but on the other hand we should not spend a dollar for any purpose that can be avoided. The expenses should be cut down in every department of government and otherwise. The Government should see to it that every man in its employ gives service for the money that he receives, gives a dollar of value for every dollar that he receives, whether it be in labour or anything else. One of the ministers, when 'submitting his estimates the other day, admitted that his department was very much overloaded, that other departments were in the same position, and that offices were maintained where there was nothing doing. But he wound up by saying that it was a hard thing for a man who has a heart to say to a person in the employ of the Government: We have nothing for you to do; we must discharge you. I would he sorry to think that the whole Cabinet would be so tender-hearted as that.
Let me put this matter in a proper light before the House. The Union Government went to the people on the question of conscription. The mothers of this country have spent their lives sitting up at nights weary and tired, nursing and caring for their boys. Now, when these boys have grown to be nineteen or' twenty years of age, the Government, under the authority of Orders in Council which they have passed, say to each of these mothers: Your King and country requires your son; kiss your boy good-bye, it may be good-bye forever. I am not finding fault with
this; it may be necessary to do it, but the Government that has a heart to tell the mothers of this country to give up their sons and say good-bye to them surely cannot turn around and say that they have not the heart to tell a man in their employ for whom there is no work that there is nothing for him to do and that he must look for another position. I am not finding fault with the Government for imposing conscription, but they cannot escape their responsibility when asking the country to sustain heavy financial and other burdens, by saying that they have not the heart to dismiss an unnecessary employee. That does not seem to me to be logical. I am not finding fault with the Government for their measure of conscription. It is the law and we must abide by it. I was not in favour of it because I did not believe it was necessary. But I say it is necessary to preserve the money and resources of this country, to see that the money is properly spent and that no man is kept in his position simply because he has a position unless there is something for him to do and he can give value for the money he receives.
The conscription measure brought down last session does not seem to have produced the desired effect. It was evidently a measure of conscription to get exemption. The Government have brought in a measure lately by which they have tightened the screws and made conscription more stringent. It may be wise, or it may be otherwise. My judgment is that if it is true that the overseas forces need reinforcement and that we should send men over, I doubt very much the wisdom of doing it just now". The men who are conscripted now cannot be trained, equipped and got into the firing line before winter. This Government and every other power we have in Canada, have been preaching greater production to the people. The farmers have just got to the point where they were ready to commence their seeding when this Order in Council was put through declaring that every man from nineteen to twenty-three should be conscripted. The order has gone out and some of these young men have been called. Inasmuch as these men cannot be got into the firing line before winter is on, it would have been wiser on the part of the Govern- [DOT] ment to have delayed until the crop was in, and probably out. Then they would have had all the winter months to prepare these men and get them into the field ready to take their places at the front.
This brings up another matter which I have in my mind. I have never heard it expressed by anybody else; perhaps there .s nobody else who thinks as I do on it. But, I think it is a very grave question and one well worthy of consideration, whether Canada would not have better served the Empire and the Allies if she had sent less men and more food. We are told that Italy has two million five hundred thousand men whom they cannot put into the field simply because they cannot equip and feed them. Would it not have been the part of -wisdom if they had said to Canada: Your
country is one of unlimited and unbounded resources from an agricultural standpoint; produce food and produce munitions?* Would it not have been equally wise if we had said to Italy: Put your men in the-field and we will equip, and feed them. This is a combination of nations at war,, and a combination of nations resembles a combination of people. If one nation can supply men, and another nation can supply food, why not develop their resources along those lines? This is a suggestion I am throwing out. I believe, and have believed for a long time, that the Government would have been well advised if they had considered the question of producing more food and more munitions, and had sent fewer men. The point may well be worth' considering yet, but I do not imagine that the Government will take my advice. The people of the country perhaps may not credit what I say now, 'but when they recover their rational senses and , get over their enthusiasm they will conclude that it would have been wiser and better for Canada, and this country would have been of greater assistance to the Allies, had we followed to some extent the suggestions which I am now making. So much for matters of finance and the Budget.
There is another matter which has been raised by the hen. member for Springfield (iMr. Biehardson) which I am very glad to have the opportunity of discussing, and that is the matter of the pulp and paper business in Canada. I shall endeavour to deal with it as briefly and as carefully as I can. I shall endeavour to place before the House and the country the respective attitudes of the manufacturers, the publishers and the Government. At the outset let me say that this great industry has attained the proportions, of being the third largest exporter in Canada if not the second largest. Under the circumstances we would expect the Government and the press of Canada to show it due consideration. The-press sets itself up as being a public edu-
cator, if not a public benefactor, and a public benefactor is one who supports everything that is- in the interest of the country. Now the paper industry is not only a source of revenue to the people engaged in it, but the export of paper of all kinds from Canada, if we take this year alone, represents a value of upwards of $60,000,000. This large sum of money attracted to this country and distributed among its people indicates that the industry is one which is not only worthy of the attention of the Government, but is entitled to their support, as far as they can give it.
Perhaps it would be well for me, as a sort of introduction, to briefly review the state of the industry prior to the outbreak of war in 1914. At that time the industry was at a very low ebb and so keen was the competition that only those mills that were located close to the raw materials, with the advantages of cheap water-power, cheap labour, freedom from strikes, and things of that kind, could succeed in making any money. For example, the International Pa-per Company had reorganized once, if not twice, in the five years immediately preceding 1915, and had not paid a dividend even on their preferred stock for some years prior to that time. They were not alone, fox there were some manufacturers in Canada who were in the same position, and could not even pay a dividend on their preferred stock. The wax broke out and in the latter part of 1915, or in the early part of 1916, the business of manufacturing paper commenced to improve. The demand increased, but the cost of production increased as well. Let me illustrate my statement that prior to 1915 the paper manufacturing industry was in a very bad state, by stating what the conditions of doing business were. The conditions were these: The manufacturer of newsprint had no-t only to manufacture his paper, -but had to ship, it and prepay the freight to destination in the United States, and had to store it at destination and deliver it from day to day at the publisher's sidewalk-iw-hat they call " sidewalk delivery."
This meant that he had to keep at least two months' supply at bis storehouse to guarantee the publisher against strikes or other interruptions to trade that might happen,. Such were the conditions of the paper trade prior to 1914. Under the circumstances any gentleman in business, or who understands the situation, realizes hoiw essential an improvement in prices was.
But, strange to say, when prices commenced to rise early in 1916, the publishers came down to Ottawa and interviewed the Minister of Finance (Sir Thomas White), and I do not know who else, and practically, without consultation with the manufacturers, without hearing what their claims or reasons were, the minister undertook to fix a price. In the autumn of 1916 he wrote a letter to Mr. Chabtoon to the effect that a suggestion had been made to him in some' way, or from some source, that the puib-lisihers would consent to a rate of 2J cents a pound on paper, and he wound up his letter by saying: My advice is accept it, because if I have to pass an Order in Council I shall make the price much less. From the interviews we had with the Minister of Finance, as the_ arbitrator between the publisher and the manufacturer, we thought we discovered that we had an adverse jury, and we also found that the Finance Minister had been at one time in his life connected with one of the large papers in Toronto, and still had a leaning that way, and rather than take any chances the manufacturers consented, for a period of four months, starting from March 1st, 1917, to undertake to supply the necessary requirements of paper to the publishers of Canada at 2\ cents a pound, but with this rider and understanding, however, that the Government would appoint a commission to investigate the matter. Not only did they ask the Government to appoint a commission, but they asked that they should also appoint an auditor, which they did. Mr. G. T. Clarkson was appointed to examine -and audit the books of the manufacturers and to establish from the books what the cost of manufacturing paper was. Mr. Clarkson audited the books of thirteen of the largest newsprint mills in Canada.