May 7, 1918

UNI L

Michael Clark

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. MICHAEL CLARK:

I am sorry indeed that the chief lieutenant of the leader of the Opposition (Mr. McKenzie) should, so early in the speech of an opponent, who has been left only twenty-five minutes to reply to a speech of an hour and three-quarters, so far forget his duties and courtesy as to interrupt to the extent that the Speaker has had to rebuke him. I hope my hon. friend will in future exercise greater courtesy.

I am quite sure that neither the House, nor any one else outside it who knows me, will expect me to dwell long upon the first portion of the speech of the hon. gentleman from Maisonneuve. Indeed, Sir, it is not my intention to speak long at all, because I think it will be a fair criticism of his speech as a whole to say that the ideas contained in it were in inverse proportion as to number to the vociferousness with which it was propounded. I want to say in all honesty that I have never risen to reply to a speech which required so much time to deliver and which contained so little. When my hon. friend from West Toronto (Mr. Hocken) ventured, in what I think was a very gentlemanly and courteous speech-a speech which certainly did not show any of the bitterness which he was advised not to cultivate by the gentleman to whose speech we have just listened and which was not itself quite free from bitterness-when he (Mr. Hocken), ventured to give his political opponents certain advice which he thought really would make for

the unity of Canada, my hon. friend (Mr. Lemieux) retorted in kind and gave the hon. gentleman from Toronto advice as to what he thought Quebec might expect from Ontario. Well, if I could do it with due modesty I might, as a distant westerner, venture to give both hon. gentlemen some advice as to what would be best for the whole of Canada. I think I should do it in this way: I should remind my hon.

friend from Maisonneuve, who is a great reader, that it has been established before commissions both in Belgium and in France, that priests caught by the modem Huns at the head of the greatest military force that this world has ever seen, have been stripped in passing a pig sty, and the pig has been taken out and the priests put back naked in its place. Before the same commissions it has been established that women have been outraged until they died, by man after man from the same army. And if my voice and I say it in all honesty, Sir-could reach the remotest nook and cranny of the province of Quebec to-day, I would try to say in all kindness but in all sincerity: It is the

altars of your faith that are being outraged and desecrated; it is the children learning to prattle your tongue who are being mutilated; it is the civilians of Belgium and of France who, against all international law, are being shot. I make the appeal to my hon. friend in the presence of these facts; what good can come of an altercation on matters of religious sectarianism when there is a cause like that to champion? That is all I need to say, I think, and I do in all sincerity and kindness, on the first forty minutes of my hon. friend's speech.

The men in the trenches are not bothering themselves about a single sentence or a single thought that was contained in the first forty minutes of his speech. They realize too well that the civilization and the freedom of the world are at stake, and Catholics and Protestants are meeting the foe breast to breast and not fighting with one another about matters which are not worth the wind I have spent upon them, or the tremendous hurricane which raged in the speech of the hon. member for Maisonneuve '

My hon. friend (Mr. Lemieux) said there had been no change in the Government; that the Government in power now is the old Government. That was his charge. Well, at the beginning of last summer my hon. friend was confident that he would beat the old Government, and what was

the infusion of strength which made the Union 'Government do to him and to- his friends what has happened to them? Than was some change, anyhow, from my hen. friend's confident expectations. Why, my hon, friend from Cape Breton (Mr. McKenzie), I believe, was in his heart already Minister of Justice in the new Government to be.

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L LIB
UNION
UNI L
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An hon. MEMBER:

Call it six o'clock.

At six o'clock the House took recess.

After Recess.

The House resumed at eight o'clock.

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UNI L

Michael Clark

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. MICHAEL CLARK (resuming):

Mr. Speaker, if I may be permitted to make a little further criticism of the speech of my hon, friend from Maisonneuvie (Mr. Lemieux), I should like to summarize, if I am able, the points .at which I hinted this afternoon. That speech in my judgment .had two cardinal faults. In the first place, it was miade in apparent oblivion of the great events that are happening in the world today. From anything my hon. friend said from, the beginning to the end of his speech he might have been, unconscious that thrones are toppling, that empires are falling and that all the freest nations of Europe in conjunction with the free outlying commonwealths. of the British Empire. aTe now joined with .the most pacific but perhaps the greatest country in the world, the United. States of America, all of them filled

with the consciousness of the events- which my hon. -friend forgot-filled with the consciousness-, not that the British Empire i-s in danger, which of course it is, but that the military power opposed to us is- struggling, not for the defeat of any given one- of these free nations, hut for the abolition of the very idea of freedom from the face of the earth. The hon. gentleman who is suffering from -such lappa-rent oblivion-I do not want to Ibe too harsh with him-naturally lapsed into the second great fault of his speech. For an hour and three-quarters he talked, -and I appeal to any reasonable and fair-minded man opposite-and there' are many of them; some of them I rejoice to know as old friends and 'some as- newer friends, -to point to a single sentence in that spe-ech which was- not saturated with party-ism -from (beginning to end; it was purely a partisan speech. Of- course, to- -make a party speech under such conditions as prevail in the world to-day comes -perfectly natural to a gentleman -who even de-oeive-s himself into the notion that he is- one of the true Simon-pure Liberals remaining in the world to-day, and forgets there is- one place and one place only where the battle of Liberalism- is- being fought to-day, and that is- on the continent of Europe. My friends opposite s-ay they are Liberals.

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UNION

Robert Lorne Richardson

Unionist

Mr. RICHARDSON:

The remnant of them.

Mr. MICHAEL -CLARK: I object to

their dreaming for a moment that 'they are -even a remnant of the Liberal party. The -fact of the matter is- they are not Liberals-, they are not democrats. For this simple reason

that their attitude, the attitude displayed by my hon. friend from Mais-onneuve . this afternoon, of pure party-ism, -un-forgetfulness, overlooks the fact that if Democracy is beaten in Europe, Liberalism, real Liberalism, and real freedom disappears from the world. The hon. member for Maisonneuve allows his partyis-m to carry him so far that he tries to prove to this House, and probably wants to prove' to the country, that we have the same Government in power now that we had last summer, that there has been no change in the Government, that there are still nothing but Liberals and Tories. Every one who -sits with my hon. friend and votes against woman suffrage and talks as they did twenty years ago about lowering the tariff, which they did- not do-everything of that sort is Liberal, everything else is Tory. If my hon. friend had been in his place I would have put a very simple test

to his narrow partisan view of -the events-that are taking place in the world. I would have just asked him in a single sentence: "Is every member of the American nation a Tory?" Almost every man of intelligence in that Republic, whether he was formerly a Republican or a Democrat in -the party sense, has forgotten that party ever existed, and they are all to-day standing together behind President Wilson. And- the party sitting here are the men in Canada who forgot the same thing, forgot whether they were Liberals or Tories, and they swept the Dominion outside of one province. That is my answer to my hon. friend's taunt that there has been no change of Government. * The change is one that may go further in this country, and far further in the world, than he has ever begun to dream of.

The Union Government is a new combination. It is a combination of all the best forces that have grasped the events in the world in the way I have just tried to describe, and if they will keep grasping those events, and -keep studying the results that are likely to come out of them, and keep watching the events that do. come out of them, they will rule Canada for many a long day. For one reason, what would you put in their place, Mr. -Speaker? I trust my right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition (Sir Wilfrid Laurier) will live until he is a hundred and twenty, but I cannot help my imagination sometimes enabling me t-o wonder what the Opposition would look like if Ue were taken away by the han-d of Time. There is- no possibility of making a Government to govern Canada or any other progressive country out of the elements that took a day to prove that woman suffrage w-as a bad thing, a very wrong thing ac-co-rdinig to the Book of Leviticus or something that was written even earlier than that. How far such thinkers are removed from the current of present day events, from the tremendous need of the fight that is going on in the world, from the colossal events which in some senses it is a privilege to live through, and which events will become more colossal before we are very much older.

If I wanted to illustrate how much this Un-ion Government transcends, from the point of view I have been trying to bring before the House, the party governments which have largely ruled in this country during the past half century, I should take the simple method of referring to the events of this brief session. But before doing that,

I would remind hon. members that a party

came into power in this country in 1896 and held power for fifteen years. I was not a citizen of Canada before that time, but I have talked with many intelligent citizens of this country who watched the events of those years carefully, and it is a moot point, according to the evidence I have gathered as carefully as I can, whether of the platform convention of 1893, from which the chief lieutenant of the Liberal party read at large the other night-it is a moot point whether there was no plank of that platform honoured or only one. I have never heard anybody claim that there were two. That is the way that Government honoured its mandate. Then there was .a Government came into power in this country in 1911, a party Government of the other description, and they were not very strong on fulfilling their mandate either. My hon. friends around me must just take the truth in season as it comes to my recollection. That ie how party government has carried out the mandate of the people. I said a moment ago that we have been in session for two months. What advantage does the Union Government show over the party government that preceded it? In these two months they have shown the most utter earnestness in endeavouring to make a fair start to carry out the mandate which was given them by the people. Take the subsidiary points in the programme that was brought before the people last autumn. There was abolition of patronage. I am glad to say that my correspondence has dwindled almost to the vanishing point because the people are already learning that the Government is going to govern in so far as patronage is concerned, and is going to govern on a very different principle from getting a member to toady around a minister and ask him if he will do this or that, because that is the definition of patronage. In other words, the Government have made a most honest start and endeavour to abolish patronage by putting all appointments to the Civil Service, and all other services in the State, upon the platform of principle and taking them off tho platform of party.

There is another question which I have referred to more than once. It is difficult to believe it possible, but some members on this side of the House have chided the Government in conversation with me because they introduced woman suffrage in the first session of this Parliament. I have said to them: " Do not open your mouth along those lines, because that is the most charming thing that the Government have

done." They have taken this great step in broadening the franchise in this country in the first session of Parliament after they had promised the people that they would do so. These I can refer to as subsidiary paints in the platform of the Government and in the mandate they got from the people.

There cannot be any successful denial of the fact that the main proposition put before the country-as far as my part of the country is concerned, and I do not think it was different in any other part of the country-was that this war was of such transcendent and overwhelming importance that it was necessary to mobilize the man power and the material power of the country to enable Canada to do her full and proper share in the winning of the war. That policy did not appeal to the party opposite, or the method of pursuing that policy in Britain, in France, in America, did not appeal to them, which is pretty well the same thing. They opposed in reality, if in unconsciousness, the only method by which the man and material power of the country could be mobilized. It is true we had the criticism from the right hon. the leader of the Opposition that the Government was conscripting the man power of the country and not conscripting the money power. If that had been true I still would have voted for Union Government because, from what I could see of my right hon. friend's policy, he would not have conscripted anything, and half a loaf is better than no bread. But, I do not think it is strictly true. In regard to the man power of the country, the party opposite stand where they did, except that they do not fight the further application of compulsory military service with anything like the keenness they did last year, and I beg to say to you, Sir, that I think it is very greatly to their credit, it shows that their psychology has been somewhat affected at any rate by the tremendous offensive on the western battlefront in Europe. No one but a child could fail to appreciate what that offensive means to the world. We heard of this military power, ad nauseum, as the greatest military power that the world had ever seen, and can anybody doubt it? They swept into Belgium and France, to begin with, and they nearly gained their objective of Paris before being held up. On the eastern front they went through with incredible swiftness and ran the enormous Russian armies back 'beyond Tannenberg. That was in the first autumn of the war. In the next autumn of the war

they swept over a little country like Serbia and squeezed it like a small sponge. In the next autumn of the war they did the same with Rumania. Last autumn they hurried south and swept Italy backward in the same way. I want to put the question very seriously to my hon. friends: What remains? I will tell them. The last front of freedom in the world is that held by Britishers and equally by glorious, bleeding, but still unbeatable and triumphant Frenchmen. What are we in Canada to do in face of circumstances like that? What becomes of the strategy of my hon. friends in my own province? They had all become strategists, and they showed us that -minor individuals like General Haig and Mr. Lloyd George did not really -know anything about the facts of the situation, and that there was no need of men in Europe at all. "What you want is wheat." What would all the wheat in the world -have done to save us from the results of that offensive if the men had not been there, and what advantage would it be at the present time if you had multiplied your production tenfold if they were not now there? You must realize that if that one last bulwark of freedom were swept aside you need not bother any more about what you are going to produce in Canada, because the Germans will direct you what to do.

Now, I admitted a moment ago that the psychology of hon. gentlemen opposite has evidently been affected somewhat, but they have still, apparently, a very small appreciation of the situation as I have tried to describe it, and as I claim it to exist, because, only a few weeks ago, we were favoured with a repetition of the arguments of last, year, full of that party stuff about breaking our pledges to farmers in regard to exemptions. That does not bother me a moment, and it will not bother the western farmers, because they appreciate the situation. Why should it, in the light of the statement I have just made?-for. evidently, there will be no farming to do except under autocratic rulers if we do not send the men. That is what the Government was confronted with in the fulfilment of half of what I would call the major portion of their programme for which they got such a magnificent mandate from the peo-pje. If it were understood that the Government were going to exempt the farmers, they might turn on hon. gentlemen opposite and say they are the men who are to blame for the Government's pledge, because they

told us there was no need of men. But no man with his eyes open to the course of events would argue that to-day. The need of men was obvious, it was pressing. But the Government broke its pledge, my hon. friend from Maisonneuve (Mr. Lemieux) says. Yes, but it kept its eye fixed on the goal of victory and the need of men.

Now I think I have made out a very good case for the fact that there is a Union Government, as distinguished from a party government, up to now-a very good case. But I have to be fair to myself and to my convictions, and to carry the actual facts of the case just a little further. I want to say that the Government was equally pledged, as far as I understood their position-I certainly was, and every man from the West was, I think-to mobilize the material power, the money power, of the country, as well as the man power, and in so far as it is made from non-party motives I appreciate the point of view that was so well put by my hon. friend from West Middlesex (Mr. Ross) the other day, and was put not quite so well by my hon. friend from Maisonneuve (Mr. Lemieux) this afternoon. I appreciate the point of view; I appreciate the criticism, and I am going to extend it a little. And when I come to speak of the Budget I am bound to say that, just as I have tried to point out the reasons why -a very great change in the thought and attitude of hon. members opposite is necessary before they will be entrusted with power by the people of this country, so it is true from my point of view that the Government, this Union Government, which, after all, is only human, has fallen down a little on its Budget. I do not refer to the non-reduction of the tariff. Personally I hold the same views -about trade matters as I ever did; I suppose I am the only man here who is really open to the accusation of being fully deserving of the madhouse in regard to them, but still they are fully shared by most of my countrymen in the little land from which 1 come. I have been a strong free trader all my life, and I hold my free trade views still, but I want to repeat what I said this afternoon:, that the Unionist Government has given evidence already of its determination with full strength of purpose to do the best things to carry out its programme and to fulfil the orders that were given it by the people. I have so much confidence that the members of the Government are alive to the events that are taking place in the world, and so much confidence also in their intellect, that they will see

md be alert in repairing anything in regard to the tariff that needs to be repaired in the next session of Parliament, if not in this. I believe that all the countries at war will not go in the direction that some people are looking for, a war of imperial zollvereins and protection. I will tell you why I believe it. What is it we are all fighting for, Sir? We are fighting for the triumph of democracy in all the advanced nations in the world, or in all the world, and it is inconceivable in thought that the triumph of that democracy and the introduction of the principle of human brotherhood can lead the free peoples of the world in the direction of fighting a trade war after they have .abolished military war forever. That is my view, and I venture to base a prophecy upon it-that you will have a movement of world opinion and world action along those lines. If that is to come about it will come about in this country at the hands of the Government, because Union Government is a reality, in spite of what my hon. friend from Muisonneuve says, and it is composed of men in whose ability and integrity I have the highest confidence. Tt will be quick to catch the signs of the times and the needs of our nation. I shall very likely live to see far more lowering of the tariff under a Unionist Government than I ever saw under a Liberal one-and that might not be much either.

Now I come to the point of the conscription of wealth, so-called. Well, I think a wise Government, Sir, will be led by the force of events to go a considerable direction in the way of conscription of wealth further than this Government has been led now. Because, in the first place, we will have to copy the wisdom of the other great nations with which we are allied in this contest; and in the second place, if we do not go further than we have gone now in a wise direction towards the conscription of health, forces will toe let loose in the world, after this triumph of democracy for which we are conscientiously fighting-forces will be let loose which will be anarchistic forces, which will be socialistic forces, and instead of taking a great deal of the income of the rich man they will take all he has got. That is my contribution to prophecy along this line.

I want to say on this point candidly- and I apologize for keeping the House so long-that I do not believe the Government has gone as. far as it should with its income tax. I do not believe in a levy on capital, although there are many people in the West looking to the possibility of

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that after the war-many people are looking to it and believe it will come to. a considerable extent. I believe the proper thing is to get as much of the money as you possibly can for carrying on the war by means of an income tax, just as they are doing in the United States, and as they are doing to a very much greater extent in Great Britain, I repeat that I do not think the Government has gone far enough in this matter, and I believe public opinion will compel it to go further at the next session of Parliament. It is impossible, of course, as has been said again and again, to make anything like an equality of sacrifice possible in this war. I met, a man, within the last few days, who came into the town of Medicine Hat a few days after war broke out, from a ranch some distance out in the country. He was a South African veteran, and seeing a crowd around a building he asked what was the matter. They told him there was a war on. His hired man was with him, and he said: "Take the wagon back to the farm and tell [DOT] the wife I will come back after I have done my bit towards beating Germany." That was in the first part of the war, and he came back this week. He went to the war prepared to lose his life, if necessary. I know of other cases, well authenticated eases, in the northern part of my province, of men who left their rich farms with cattle and horses, allowed the horses and the cattle to roam the prairies, went to the front and have lost their lives. I know of one man in particular-and this is also a well authenticated case-who after being wounded three times returned to the battle line. He was killed-struck in the middle of the body by a shell and had1 both his legs blown off. There is no amount of money that we can pay, the richest of us, that will make us equal in sacrifice to what these men have done. But surely the argument is made stronger by that very consideration, for a Government going as far as it is possible, in accordance with sound economic thinking and the economic condition of the country, to make the sacrifice of those who are left at home as great as possible along the line of the giving of wealth. If we compare the Budget, that my hon. friend (Mr. Maclean) introduced' the other day in a speech of conspicuous ability, with what they are doing in Britain, the comparison compels me again to think that this Government has not gone far enough. In the year 1916 Lloyd George had predicted a total revenue in England of five hundred million pounds. As the House well knows, nearly all the taxation in England is raised

directly. Well, the English people did better than Lloyd George, who at that time [DOT]held the position of Chancellor of the Exchequer, anticipated. They raised five hundred and seventy million 'pounds- $2,800,000,000-in the year 1916, almost entirely by direct taxation.

We are, roughly, rather more than a seventh of the population of Great Britain and Ireland. A very simple sum in division, seven into twenty-eight, would have told my horn, friend the Acting Minister of Finance a simple method by which he could have raised $400,000,000 for next year, and he only wants $280,000,000-he is not a very greedy chancellor compared with those they have in Gteat Britain. He wants $280,000,000, and he proposes to raise it by borrowing from the people of Canada. If he had made his taxes as high as they are in Britain, and provided the people here are as rich as are the people there-I suppose they are richer in Britain, although it has always been a mystery to me how they could get so much wealth under the "mistaken" fiscal policy of free trade-he could knock off $120,000,000, and get all the money required without borrowing at all. If we are not as rich as are the people of Britain, it would be hard to get the money; that is a moot point; there is none of us who would admit that we are not as patriotic. I think sound fiscal thinking will lead the Government to go further along this line before another Budget is brought in.

I want to make another comparison between the action of the Government upon the income tax and the other taxes they have brought in. I do not want to say much about the tax on matches-I have a recollection that Bobert Lowe, a Chancellor of the Exchequer in Britain, was nearly driven out of public life for introducing a tax on matches, and in view of that precedent I rather wondered at the courage of my hon. friend in his action. The people of Britain would not stand for it a minute. They were probably right. It ie one of these small irritating taxes, and we had better wait until next year before we prophesy anything about it. But I want to make a comparison which will perhaps bring out my point of view a little better. The Government are taxing tea ten cents a pound. Now, you can get a pretty fair pound of tea in western Canada for fifty cents. That means a tax of twenty cents upon a dollar's worth of tea. A simple calculation by the House will make it aware of the fact, therefore, that this Government is practi-

cally putting $2,000 taxation upon $10,000 worth of tea-tea which the women who have sent their relatives to the front need, or think they need, to cheer their nerves three times a day, in the circumstances we are passing through. But on an individual income of $10,000, the Government charges only $392. I think they are too kind about that transaction. I have always been extremely anxious to pay an income tax of 95 per cent.on a million dollars. I would like ito do that just for one year to know what it felt like to have $50,000. And then if the war went on I would- make a fair deal on that $50,000 afterwards', but I am ready next year, if the Government will tell me wihere to get the million dollarsi, to let them have 95 per cent of it. Of course, people living in the eastern' parts would not be so rash, because they do not know the glorious freedom and independence of our western country. If the Government had gone further along [DOT]this line they would, have pursued the path of sounder finance, in my humble judgment. I have given them full credit for what they have done along this line. The late Government was the first which ever raised a cent of direct taxation in this country, aud, after all, that is something to be rather proud of. Some of the taxation by which they ra'sed money was very drastic taxation indeed. The business tax-I referred this Mtemoon to the extraordinary shynesss which those enthusiastic direct taxers opposite showed for these direct taxes when they were introduced in this House. It seemed to me self-evident-of course, I was raised and got my fiscal thoughts in the Old Country, where free trade and direct taxation have prevailed for three-quarters of a century-that jt would be sounder finance for us to take more of the money from the pockets of the people as you go along, and not by way of loans. Mr. Speaker, there is no great amount of patriotism, or sacrifice either, in buying a good bunch of Victory bonds with the credit of Canada behind them and 5 per cent interest. I would do a great deal along that line of patriotism if I had the money. But he is a great patriot who says: Take the money now, and you will never have to pay either principal or interest. The Victory bond business is not one of the things which I consider to be the biggest exhibition of patriotism. As a matter of fact, the man who buys a big bunch of Victory bonds is the embodiment of selfishness. This may be extraordinary heterodoxy to the people of the United States and

Canada, but I believe what I say, and I have a habit of saying what I think. In the first place he looks over to the trenches and says: "Poor fellows, they are losing their lives; we have to support them.'' Then he looks at his own pocket and sees .a fine bunch of money, and the Government comes along and1 says: "We would like that money at 5J per cent interest"-and the beauty of the arrangement is that you may never be called upon to pay the principal, you will have to struggle with the interest, hut posterity will pay the principal. This .Victory bond business is not an example of sacrifice; it is an example of selfishness and shirking of duty. The 'man in the trenches is sacrificing, as are the people who will subsequently pay back the principal of the bonds and the interest-none of us knows how long we will carry that debt. We are really putting our sacrifices of blood, on the one hand, on the men in the trenches, and on the other hand our financial sacrifices are put on posterity. The Government have lacked courage in regard to their income tax, which should have been higher. Personally, I would die from the lashings of my conscience,-and I do not profess to have the most tender conscience in the world,-if I received anything like an income of $20,000 a year in times like these. I would like to take all the millionaires out to my ranch, build them each a shack, and let them know the pleasure of working for a living, if they would give most of their wealth to carry on the war. Since the beginning of the war business men have been asking to be faxed, and that is why, with great, regret, I have to say that on this one point the Government have broken down, they have failed. There was a gentleman in Hamilton, whose name I forget now, who handed over the whole of his profits for one year, amounting to seven or eight hundred thousand dollars, without being taxed at all,-conscience money he could not take. I met a business gentleman, who, with his brother is the head of one of the biggest businesses in Ontario, the other day, a lifelong Tory, fifty years of age,-it is only an accident, perhaps, but I never met a Grit of that kind at all,- He said to me, with the utmost seriousness and in the terse language which business men use; Your income tax is all right, but you have not gone for enough with it; do it now and do it quickly; I want to pay my shot now; it is interest that is the ruin of Canada. Sir, that man knew what he was talking about and his views are

representative of those of hundreds of other business men of this country.

The Government-some members of it anyhow-have with laudable energy

preached economy since this war began. The Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) has been very earnest along that line; I am told that he smokes only one cigarette a year, so it runs with his nature. To preach economy is good, but it is in the power of the Government to enforce economy. If you only take plenty of taxes from the rich they will have to be economical, and, because of its newness and its otherwise generally admirable character, it will he a blessed experience to them. How are we economizing on war accounts? I do not know why the Government went in for these petty dockages of a "few civil servants who went to the front. Get the money by direct taxation, and give the men who have gone to the front the fairest show in the world- that is the view of every right-thinking man in this country. I believe the Government have actually done something in making separation allowances less; but not one man in ten thousand in Canada will approve these petty dockages.

I have said a great deal in praise of the Government and it is just as well for them to have a little medicine of the other kind. They are men of open mind and I believe they will take it in good spirit; they know that I mean well, anyhow. I do not think they have economized as much, perhaps, on contracts as they might have, although the (Minister of Public Works (Mr. Carvell), has been an admirably busy man along these lines. I have said this in good part; I have said it with the utmost earnestness and the utmost seriousness. I think that Union Government is giving a splendid justification of its formation and its existence, as will be admitted by any gentleman on the other side of the House who gives reasonable attention to the points that I have raised in that connection, if he has any fairness in him and gets rid of that partyism which took such a violent hold of my hon. friend this afternoon. They have made a fair step at fulfilling their promises to the people. They are putting hard work into this business. Some people attribute to me some share in the parentage of Union Government. It would hurt me if the Government went much further along that direction of being prodigally patriotic with the sons of the rank and file in the trenches and parsimonious with the pockets of the rich. I

believe that the opinion of the people of the country is absolutely behind me in this respect, irrespective of party, I know what the people of the West want in this matter. I know them well- I know them better than some folks thought I did last fall, anyway. I think I know what the labouring men of this country want in the matter; if Canada was canvassed to-morrow they would support the view that I have tried in my own way to bring before this House, and especially before the Government. Realizing their immense responsibilities wishing them well, knowing that they are dominated by patriotism and by the desire to win the war for freedom on which we are embarked, I believe the Government will yet rise to the fulness of their duty on this the only point on which in my judgment they have fallen short.

I should like to finish with an appeal to my hon. friend (Mr. Lemieux), whom I love-he used to entertain me in his own house at one time, and would yet, I think, if I needed it. With the greatest political powers in the world he cannot become a real leader of a united country if he gives way to outbursts of racialism, and to what I am afraid was narrowness, as he did this afternoon; and leads a debate which betrays extraordinary imperviousness to the course of events in the world, ae he did when he spoke against woman suffrage. " Coming all over the world-but we cannot have it in Quebec,"-that attitude will never produce a united country.

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L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

Mr. Asquith would not have it in England, nor would Mr. Gladstone.

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UNION

Edgar Nelson Rhodes (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Unionist

Mr. SPEAKER:

Order.

Mr. MICHAEL CLARK. Mr. Asquith has more wisdom than my hon. friend; he was not long in seeing the light. I had taken the chair for Mrs. Pankhurst before Mr. Asquith saw the light-I do not know that the accidental combination of Mrs. Pankhurst and myself at a public meeting had anything to do with it. However, the facts are in favour of Mr. Asquith, because he has changed his mind in the right direction. The fact is that war will lead my hon. friends opposite-will lead us all-to develop far more quickly along the lines of progress in one year than people heretofore have done in a generation. Half a century ago you could not have formed a Union Government in this country; it was the pressure of war that did it. Of course my hon. friend says that it is not a Union Government; that it is a Tory Government.

With the indulgence of the House, I would like to put a question to him. He still sees nothing but Liberals and Tories; he himself and his right hon. leader are the only two of the Liberal persuasion worth very much consideration. There are some good, promising young fellows behind them, and everything else is Tory. Why, Sir, everybody on this side of the House holds almost precisely the view with regard to world events that every advanced thinker in America does to-day, irrespective of party. Would my hon. friend make the charge that the United States of America-the freest and in many respects the greatest country in the world- is composed entirely of Tories? He has to get away from this to toe on his old pinnacle.

My hon. friend told me the other day that I -was an exile. I am not an exile from the belief in freedom:; I am not an exile from the belief that the only fight for liberty and democracy is now going on on the battlefields of Europe. My hon. friend knows that; he has given a siplendid young man to the cause, and -I -am proud of it- his only son, if I mistake not, standing with mine. They have forgotten all party strife there; they see only the danger to the world. I speak with the utmost kindness and the utmost sincerity in the last words I utter on this occasion to my hon. friends opposite. Press along; get the Government to go>

further in the way of conscription of wealth, but give up partyism for the moment. Get in behind the hoys in the trenches. My message to-night is the same as it was last year: Realize the great object of the fight and the privilege of living through this period. Then you will have a united Canada-united under a Union which, I trust, will not he lightly broken again.

Mr. JEAN J. DENIS (Joliette): Mr. Speaker, I listened with attention and interest to the very able speech which was delivered this afternoon toy the member for Maisonneuve (Mr. Lemieux) and with no less attention to the reply of the member for Red Deer (Mr. Michael Clark). Notwithstanding what has toeen said on many occasions during this debate, I want hon. gentlemen opposite to realize that we concur with them in the view that the present circumstances and the situation which we are now facing are the most serious and most inspiring that have ever existed in this country-indeed, that have ever existed through all the ages of time. On the other hand, I wish every member

of th'is House to understand that, no matter how great the crisis, no matter how great the issue at stake, it is inevitable, especially in. such circumstances as these, that men in the same country, having the same aims, the same aspirations and tending towards the same destinies, should, on matters so momentous as these, have different views and opinions. That is the stand that I am going to take this evening in the course of my few remarks, and that is the stand which has been taken by my fellow-citizens oi French origin. Future generations and ages will later show-and perhaps the time will come .sooner than we expect-who was right and who was wrong; but if I am now raising the question of right or wrong, it is not because I want to .contend that we aJone are ri^ht and that we possess right.

I do not contend that at all. I am not so strong a man as to be able, under these circumstances, to say: behold, right is ours, and hon. members on the other side of the House are wrong. But I am strong enough a man to say: We have studied the situa-. tion as it has presented itself to us; we have done our heist to comprehend and understand it, and if we have arrived at a solution which is different from the solution to which our hon. friends opposite have come, our opinion in this respect, notwithstanding the greatness of the effort, should be respected just as highly as the opinion of any hon. member in this House.

One of the main arguments made by the hon. member for Bed Deer (Mr. Michael Clark) in order to overcome the effect of the speech of the hon. member for Maison-neuve (Mr. Lemieux) was that the vigor-our addr'ess which the latter delivered this afternoon contained nothing .substantial and, in fact, nothing that was deserving of an answer. I was very much .surprised to hear the hon. member for Bed Deer make that remark at the beginning of his speech, for he did make it, as I took a note of it at the time, and it will appear in Hansard. For a person who can find nothing fitting with which to challenge or contradict the arguments of an adversary, it is always wise to say: The reasons you have given are worthless, and I shall not attempt to answer them. It would be folly on my part if I were not aware that I am far too inexperienced to place myself between these two stalwarts, the hon. member for Maisonneuve and the hon. member for Bed Deer. Let it be sufficient for me j.o say, in conclusion, upon this point, that, at all events, we on this side of the House all greatly admired the speech of the hon. member for Maisonneuve, and we are all happy that, in these times of stress, we are able to enjoy the privilege of having such a man in our depleted ranks.

It is recognized, and I can safely say, that this Budget is one of the most important delivered since Confederation. It embraces greater scope than any other measure which was ever introduced into this House. The figures are amazing. Yet the discussion of it remains a delicate subject to handle on account of the many delicate questions which are dependent upon it, and of this every one of us has had proof this afternoon and on previous days.

The feature which will at first sight strike the layman is the coldssal amount of money which we have already spent, and the still more colossal amount which will be spent under the new measures and also under the old ones. In view of these facts one can hardly avoid making reflections 9 p.m. of the most serious nature. May I be listened to by this House, however, when I say that my desire is to avoid launching into any unjust criticism or undue manifestation of hostility toward those who do not believe as we do. For I have always believed that earnestness and sincerity are the best policies for any man to follow in all walks of life-politics included-and although this disposition of mind has been the cause of many bitter deceptions I have suffered-.mainly in politics-yet I still cling to these primeval principles. Because I look upon it as a boon, which fends to make a man a better man, to be given the privilege of making an address in the presence of such a distinguished body of men as I now behold. 1 look upon the situation as serious, and I believe we cannot emphasize this too much. If it be the policy of this Government to spend hundreds of millions, even billions of dollars, blindly and without any regard whatsoever to Canadian interests; if it be the policy of this Government to forget that Canada is a country which owes to itself preservation and isurvivance, then this Government is rightfully pursuing its policy. Again, if this Administration is content with the principle, once dwelt upon by one of its members, that it is proper and expedient, if needs be, tb drive Canada into bankruptcy in order to assist the Allies in Europe; if such be the consensus of opinion amongst the hon. members of this House, then, again, I say we would be only following our course by adopting this Budget

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and pursuing the policy which the Government has adopted. If, on the other hand, sound counsel still prevails in this House; if the ideals of the Canadian people are still those which, until a very recent date, had^een pursued by all political men, political associations and political parties in this country, ever since Confederation, then I say it is high time that this wild stampede which has been forced upon us should be halted, and every man in this country should now pause and meditate a moment. If it be true that I am opposed with all the strength of which I am capable to conscription, yet I am not, we are not on this side of the House by any means opposed to Canada's contribution to this war. On the contrary, we have always said and declared that, regardless of whether or not we were compelled to contribute according to our obligations towards the Mother Country, we were willing to do what we could. But what I want, what we want, is that this contribution be made to the extent only which our means warrant. What we want is that Canada should not be ruined, bankrupt in both men and money, in her attempt-successful, we all hope but nevertheless uncertain-to win the war by giving the Allied nations the relatively scant and meagre support which we only can produce. I have said we all hope to be successful, but that the result is nevertheless uncertain, and I want to be well understood on that point. What does Canada's contribution represent in this war? If we are to accept as true the statement in the newspapers that there are now five million men opposing the Germans, what does Canada's contribution of four divisions or ninety thousand men amount to, relatively speaking? It represents about two per cent of the whole. If by sacrificing Canada it was in our power to win the war, I am not ready to say I would not be the first to say, Let us1 do it; because Canada is not as big as the whole of Europe or as big as civilization, and it might not be a bad bargain to sacrifice even our own' country to save Europe and civilization. But what will be the actual result of our contribution in this war? We can add only a very small amount to the forces which are now opposing each other; I might almost say, a negligible amount when we consider the final result of this struggle. But we are taking it for granted that it is the proper thing to do, to ruin and bankrupt this country for the sake of the war. I say this is not acting on sound principles. It is not doing justice to ourselves or to the country to sacrifice Canada in order to win the war, when we all admit that Canada by itself cannot win the war and can only assist in a very meagre way in bringing that end about. I have expressed in a few brief words what I believe to be the sentiments and ideals of my own province, and what I believe to be also the sentiments and ideals of a great many citizens of other provinces in this Dominion. Of this we have new evidence every day. What answer do the delegations get that come here from different parts of Ontario? What do they come here for? They come here, I suppose, because they accept the argument I have just advanced. If the Prime Minister said to these men, "Canada is the only country that can win the war, and if we give our whole we will win it,'' I credit the people of Ontario with patriotism enougn to sav that they would dio it- and I believe every one of those men would return to their homes satisfied and prepared to do what had to be done. But all that can be said to them is this, "Do your best; we are simply a drop in the bucket; sacrifice your whole for the war but be assured that your contribution is not important enough to win the war." Many criticisms have been made of the stand taken by my province. On an occasion like this, where the main if not the sole object of the Budget is the prosecution of the war according to the means adopted by the Government; the application and the enforcement of the law of conscription according to old and new methods, the payment of expenses which have already been made, which are being made now, and which will necessarily be made in the future, and, as an immediate consequence of all this, the necessity of levying enormous amounts of money upon the people-all matters about which we do not agree with the Government or at least^ differ as to methods-I think I should be given the privilege of explaining some of the reasons why my people have opposed, and are still opposing, the policy of the Government in regard to the different matters I have just mentioned, and I feel I will not be doing wrong or injustice to any one in expressing the^ views of my constituents on these divers subjects, if I do so openly, frankly, and honestly, without craft, guile, or suspicion. If I were only relying upon my own authority in reference to these reasons it would not be worth any more than the opinion of an inexperienced man; but such is not the case. In support of my views I can quote the opinion of all the public men this country has produced, great and small, learned and ignorant, Whigs and Tories, from the fathers of Confederation down to the public men of present times. Every one in this House admits that this new policy of sacrificing Canada to win a war in Europe has always been deprecated by all Governments and by all public men in this country ever -since Confederation, We are, so well aware of that, that when war was declared we heard the Prime Minister say that no one in England had asked us to send troops overseas. If we had been obliged for -some reason or another to contribute in this war, why did not England send for the soldiers of Canada just as she sent for her own soldiers in India and elsewhere? Of course, everybody admits we are not obliged to contribute. We are doing it simply because we are satisfied to do it, because the issue at stake is so tremendous we -cannot help _ doing it, _ and we should not -avoid doing it. The difference of opinion between us is not so great as some people think, and it would not be so great if the facts which I am now going to bring before the House were better known. I have just said that this is a new policy for Canada. We never contemplated a contribution in this war to the extent of conscription, and in this connection I cannot do better than refer to the declaration of the Prime Minister (Sir Robert Borden) himself. In January, 1916, in the House of Commons, in answer to a question asked by the right hon. the leader of the Opposition, the right hon. the Prime Minister said in the most unequivocal manner that there should be no conscription in Canada. What did that mean? It meant that the effort of Canada was to be a limited one and that it was to remain within the limits of voluntary recruiting which, even at that period, had begun to diminish to a noticeable extent. To say that Canada would not have conscription was virtually to declare that the contribution in men would not go beyond a certain limit and that, as a consequence, the moneys to be expended, being proportionate to the number of men who had enlisted, might also be limited. No other meaning could be -attributed to those words. But the course of things changed. All of a sudden conscription came, and some people are now surprised because the French Canadians did not jump at conscription, did not take off their hats and acknowledge that since the Prime Minister has changed his views, we should change ours also. But I would -point out to hon. gentlemen who take -this view that we had been taught otherwise for generations and generations, and no one can change -the mentality of a people in a single hour no matter what the circumstances are. Since then the policy of the Government has been changed so that no one can tell now where we are going, save that we are going fuR speed ahead towards bankruptcy? This is just where the divergence of opinion arises. I deny the right of any member of this House or any Government to drive Canada full speed ahead into bankruptcy in order to try to win the war. That isi where the divergence of opinion -comes in. One group contends that we -should give everything to the war, while the other group supports the idea that we should give everything we -can without driving this country to destruction. It is o-nly a question of degree and I humbly submit that 'both opinions, although perhaps not equally wise, are nevertheless equally sincere. _ Although I do not admit the idea oi those who would sacrifice everything to the war, still I can understand the sentiment and ideals of those men, and that is the reason I rose -and said that I wanted to speak and to -say things honestly and sincerely without craft, pretense or guile. 1 can understand the sentiments and ideals of those men, but what I cannot understand is that -those who do not agree with our ideal-s should find it impossible, or should refuse, to understand our sentiments and ideals as we do theirs. The only explanation would be that these men are practical exponents of the selfish doctrine of selfinfallibility. An important question which has often been asked and which I will n-o-w seek to answer is- this; Why did not the French Canadians of the province of Quebec enroll voluntarily to -the same extent as those of English speech throughout Canada generally? Why did they oppose conscription, and at this present juncture why are they n-ot willing to give their own to the war, or, to be plain, why are they no-t willing to give the "last man" -and s-pend the "last dollar" for the war? This query is nothing less than the enunciation under a different form of the problem- I have already disclosed. The an-s-weT is manifold, and if I take the time of this House to give the answer it is because I think earnestly and frankly that from a proper understanding between this side of the House and .the



other good will oome to all of us. It has been pointed out ibefore that the enrollment throughout Canada has been toy reason of inverse \ ratio to' the time during which people have inhabited this country. In other words, those who were newcomers enrolled in much greater numbers than those who had been old time settlers. And this is only natural. The man who has left Europe recently has not yet become attached to the soil of this country. He feels himself a stranger in Canada and he has always in mind the idea that the old country is his home. The opposite applies to the old settler. He has lost interest in all things across the ocean and looks upon Canada as his real and only country. But the same condition of mind exists still more deeply with the French Canadians for historical reasons. These historical reasons are not known by every one in this country. .If they were better known, our sentiments and ideals would be better understood. In the year 1763, when the Treaty of Quebec established English domination in this country, history teaches us, all those notole Frenchmen who had sufficient means to return to France made their exit from this country leaving behind the poorer classes of the population, whose numbers were a little over 60,000. These people considered themselves exiles, and English domination in those days of strife between France and England was looked upon with the same terror as we now look upon the dreaded Herman, domination. These .things may seem strange, tout hon. gentlemen who are listening to me now, and who are scholars, know very well that these facts as I state them are true. No French nobleman would stay in Canada to submit himself to the yoke of English domination. In speaking of English domination, I am not saying that the yoke of English domination was anything like the German domination, but that was the sentiment of the time. It was the same sentiment as that which existed at one time in England that Catholics should not have the same rights as Protestants', and it was. the same sentiment as that which existed in France at one period that Protestants should not have the same rights as Catholics. Fortunately, those times have passed, but we know that these sentiments of the French Canadians have their root in these facts of history. If the French Canadians have attached themselves to the soil, if they made this country their home, having lost all hope of ever returning to France, I .hope no one will blame them for this, because it has been, held in all countries of the world and through all ages that the immemorial tenure of land and of estates was the very foundation of nobility. Now let us consider the case of the new settler from Britain. The man, perhaps, arrived from the Old 'Country, five, ten, or fifteen years ago and settled in this country. This man's family was in England, his ancestors were buried there, his recollections were of England, his lore is that of England, the better part of his heart very often had remained in England; and i* was only natural, on war being declared between Great Britain and Germany, that, forgetting at once that he was in a colony, he should flee back to England and take his place in the rank's of the British army. Such action was only natural, but how can you reasonably expect that the French Canadian whose ancestors had been domi-oiled in Canada for one hundred and fifty or two hundred years, who had no relations whatever in Europe, and had no interest there, should do the same thing? You could not reasonably expect it. Of course, in my remarks T am speaking entirely outside of tihe legal question, outside altogether of the question of the right to impose conscription and the obligations that devolve upon us thereunder. I am dealing solely with the question of sentiment, the force of which has been urged so many times in this House. So, for generation after generation, t'he French Canadian had lived here, his affections divided equally between love for his native village and love for the numerous members of his family for whom be had to care. He was taught to think, to believe, and to understand that Canada alone was his country, and-that in the event of war hi® obligations did not go beyond defending his native land; and we all know that this opinion was in conformity with the views held by many Englishmen, not only in Canada but in England as well. It is recognized that this is the first time such an issue has ever been raised in Canada. If X am emphasizing the point so much it is because I see some of my hon. friend/s opposite smiling, but I am very serious in this matter. I argue that it could not be otherwise than for the French Canadian population of Canada to hold the views they do, bearing in mind the conditions under which they had lived here for one hundred and fifty years and more; and when people declare that the French Canadians are disloyal, that they are antiBritish, that they do not want the war to be won by the Allied nations, and all such kind of stuff, they must be either ignorant of the conditions under which the French Canadians have lived-, or else they are acting in bad faith. When Canada was attacked, what did the French Canadians do? I have just stated that according to their conception of their duty it was imperative for them to defend Canada. Well, they defended Canada, and history stands as an unfaltering witness to testify that they did their duty. They were taught, and learned, that such was the limit of their duty, and I believe they were taught the truth according to the only possible true interpretation of our constitution. Such, Mr. Speaker, was the state of things which existed when Confederation was ^brought about. The drafting of the Confederation pact left no doubt in the minds of the Canadian people that their military obligations were limited to the defence of this country, and if room had been left for doubt, the uncertainty would have long ago been dispelled by the teachings of Canadian public men during the last fifty years. What is Confederation? It is nothing more or less than a contract between different provinces, just as a contract is made between individuals. The province of Quebec was not compelled to enter Confederation, but she did so, and I here declare to-night that we people of that . province are glad of the fact. We are not sorry that we entered Confederation, because we believe in the destinies of Canada, we believe that when these days of stress pass union will exist-not the Union Government, but a real union-between the two great races of this country once more, even if that union has been broken recently. I believe that by exerting our united efforts we can accomplish a lot for Canada; I believe we will achieve such results that in a very few years no one will be displeased, or will entertain sorrow, that Confederation ever existed. I speak from what I know of the sentiment in my own province, because that province entered as a partner into Confederation. Taking the facts as they exist, under that compact the French Canadians have been taught for the last fifty years that they have nothing to do with wars in Europe. The man who came to this country from England, one, two, five, or ten years before the war, did not Understand that condition of things here. He was supposed to know that Confederation existed, but we can well imagine that he never troubled his head about the underlying principles. That man left England and came to a " colony," or at least came here with the idea that most Englishmen have, namely, that colonies, being dependencies of the Old Country, must submit to everything that the Old Country demands of them. Of the ruling spirit which influenced Confederation they knew nothing. I am not blaming such Englishmen, I admire their patriotism, but how could it be expected that French Canadians could have the same mentality, the same point of view, as that which influenced the Englishman to leave Canada and return to England to fight on her behalf in this war? Now let me refer to other events. About twenty years ago the South African war occurred, and lengthy discussions took place in Canada with regard to our contribution to it and the relatively small number of men who were sent on active service at that time. If I am not mistaken, Canada sent four thousand men to South Africa, but before a single so-ldier was despatched, it was declared in the House of Commons of Canada in a most authoritative way, in such a manner that no one could be mistaken, that the contribution of men which we were then making should not be considered as a precedent. Well, Sir, if so much care and trouble was taken to announce to the people of Canada that the despatch of that force to South Africa should not be considered as a precedent, it meant implicitly that Canada was not obliged to contribute men, and if we did contribute men it was because we wanted to render more cordial the good relations that existed between England and this country. So the people of the province of Quebec had another reason for believing that they were not compelled to participate in European wars. But the newest, most amazing and most dissolving manifestation against out participation in foreign wats, was witnessed during the general elections of 1911 and the period which followed. In the province of Quebec, a new party called the Nationalist party was in the field. According to these men we owed England nothing, and in case of war ought not to furnish her one button for a uniform. They vehemently condemned the Laurier policy of a Canadian navy, to be [DOT]Canadian in time of peace but Imperial in time of war. They denounced with still greater vigour the policy of the hon. gentleman who is now Prime Minister. They denied allegiance to either of the two leaders whose policies they equally reproved. The result was that several Nationalist candidates were elected, and, immediately after, the Prime Minister whom they had de-



nounced' with the utmost violence received them into the shelter of his fatherly arms just as the patriarch of yore received the prodigal son. The records show, however, that this wonderful metamorphosis was not altogether spontaneous, for, before being allowed] to enter the precincts of a new Cabinet the Nationalists had to severely punish their rebellious .minds with anchor-etic repentance .and show signs of remorse such as even the prodigal son never approached. On the other hand, it is nevertheless true that no penitent sinner ever derived from' repentance such magnificen* and gorgeous rewards as these men received. Oliver Goldsmith writes: Scarcely any virtue found to resist th-e power of long and (pleasing temptation. The author of the Vicar of Wakefield did not write for the men of his time alone, but rather with a prophetic instinct he wrote also for some of the distinguished gentlemen who were elected in the year of grace 1911. The temptaition to which these Nationalists were subjected on the part of the hon. Prime Minister-for he seems to have been an irresistible tempter,-were indeed long and pleasing temptations which the heroic virtue of the reformers could not withstand. _ Both the tempter and his easy-to-wm victims have been since greatly punished, the former on account of the many difficulties which he has encountered and of the bitter reproaches which ever since have assailed him from the faithful of his party; the latter by the discredit into which they have fallen among their own fellowmen, a disgrace perhaps equal to none in the political annals of this country. But what would the French Canadians think while some of these Nationalists were playing that low style of comedy? What could they believe other than that they had been deceived? Was this a reason for them to change their ideas? Certainly, this would never change their conviction® and ideas and they still remained even firmer than before in the sentiments. I have already described. It is not by deceiving people that you will bring conviction into their minds, When these Nationalists had preached all through the province of Quebec that we owed nothing to England and that we should not furnish a button for a uniform if she were at war, they should never have received from the Prime Minister the recompense they did receive. That was a very bad lesson to give to the province of Quebec because it was intimating to the people that credit and confidence were being placed in men who had been [iMr. Denis. ] preaching to them a doctrine which I believe is altogether false, because I have never thought myself that we should go to the length of saying that we owed England nothing and that we should not give her a button for a uniform in time of war. So, I .say again, that was a very bad example to the French Canadians and would never change their minds or ideas upon conscription or their contribution in this war. Let us take a more recent event. The last, but not the least event was the general elections of 1917. If anything should be held as sacred in a country which i.s governed on democratic principles and is under a democratic constitution, it is certainly the right of suffrage, for all other rights proceed from the right of 'suffrage. Yet, prior to and during the. last general election, every scheme and contrivance of devilish ingenuity were set to work to defeat the right and the ends of justice. I am not going to give the details. They will be given later to the country. Let it be sufficient for the moment, however, to mention that the War-time Elections Act was a scandal and an infringement upon the rights of the people unparalleled in, the annals of this country. The application cf the Act was equally scandalous, and we should not wonder at this for indeed the Act seemed to have been purposely drafted with such loopholes as would invite fraud and conspiracy, and the invitation was not unheeded, either because imposition, trick, cheat, and treachery even were rampant during the elections. Last Friday night I heard the hon. member for Maple Creek (Mr. Maharg) say that in Saskatchewan the War-time Elections Act was not conducive in any degree to the success of the Administration, and that 'the result would have been the same had that law not existed. Sir, if that statement be correct what a pity that this precious Government, as it was ironically termed-this session by an hon. member on the right, did not think ' fit to dispense with that ignominious law. Lor I do solemnly declare to this House and the country that had the elections been just, free, fair, lawful and unstained, if the verdict had not been one of part only, but a free verdict of all of the population of Canada, the French Canadians would have abided by the decision and submitted to it. This Government had, indeed, a fine opportunity to win to their cause the French Canadians or else to prove to the world that they were really unworthy .and unreliable partners in the great pact of Con- federation. All the Administration had to do was to win a fair election, and this they did hot choose to do. And that is one more reason why the French Canadians would not change their opinions about conscription. It had been proposed in this House- I do not wish to refer to a debate which is now closed-by my right hon. leader that a referendum should be submitted to the people, but it was claimed that this was unnecessary. Very well, let that question remain settled. But a free election, a right election, was necessary. This Government-I do not know whether it is the same Government or a different one, but I am inclined to accept the view of my leader, who says that it is the same Administration as the previous one, whose complexion only has been changed-this Government, to impose conscription, had only to say to the French Canadian people: We have the people of Canada behind1 us; if you are not now ready to follow the lead given by the majority of the people, you are unworthy subjects. Had the Prime Minister said this, he would have been telling the truth. Any class of persons in a democratic country who are not ready to submit to the will of the majority, properly and fairly given in an election, are not worthy of consideration or of the deference and respect of their fellow-men. Such was the state of affairs when the war broke out. It was announced from the beginning that Canada's participation should at all times and under all circumstances be voluntary; that Canada would never have conscription. This was another Teason for French Canadians being confirmed in their previous ideas concerning conscription. But when, in May, 1917, the Government changed' its policy in a fundamental manner and French Canadians did not follow suit, the latter were and still are denounced as slackers, aniti-Britiishers and traitors. I do not want to hurt anybody's feelings. I am working, not on a policy of disruption, but on coalition and union of the races of this country. It is nevertheless true that French Canadians think logically; that they have only followed the traditions and laws of their country, while those who reproach them have not. What more should we ask of the best citizen than that he follow the traditions and laws of his country? The French Canadians are without reproach in their conduct. They might have enlisted in greater numbers, but it was their privilege to do so, or not to do so. The system was entirely a voluntary one, and they are therefore above reproach for what they have done. This js only sound logic. There is a sentiment in certain parts of Canada against my people which I cannot too deeply regret, but which we are powerless to avoid. This sentiment did not find its origin in their non-participation in this war; it has existed for a longer period-indeed, for several generations. I am sorry to say that the province in which this House sits is mainly responsible for this regrettable state of affairs. Long before this war, over twenty years ago, I learned through my own experience of the state of mind of many of the Britishers in Ontario-things which are rather sad to admit. According to these people, all other considerations being even, a French Canadian is not equal to an Englishman for the sole reason that he is a French Canadian. I have probed this problem and- I make this declaration because I acquired the knowledge through the experience of my boyhood when I was attending college in Ontario. I do not say this by way of reproach; we are working to unite this country. I say to the people of Ontario: You think you know something about the province of Quebec; but you know nothing; you think you were born to teach the people of the province of Quebec what they should do and what they should not do; but you are mistaken; send your boys to Quebec, nave them, learn the French language, have them study our institutions, have them see what kind of life we live and what kind of people we are, and you will have more consideration for the French community than you have now. If the people of Ontario wish to confine themselves to their own province, that is their own business; but if they do so they cannot be aware of the facts pertaining to our province; they cannot be alive to the conditions which existed in Quebec long before their ancestors came to this country. If the French Canadians do not contribute enough to the war, our friends from Ontario criticise us. If there is a change in sentiment, and the announcement is made that the French Canadians are willing to contribute, our friends from Ontario want to know why. Not later than last week we were given an example of this. The Minister of Militia had said1: 1 am happy to he able to report to the House many evidences of a marked change of feeling in that province. He was speaking of the province of Quebec. Assuredly this declaration should have



been gratifying and sufficient to the virtuous men of Ontario, 'but it was not. One of them could not help asking the minister to what he attributed the- better feeling in Quebec. When the feeling is bad, they say: Let us strike the province of Quebec. When the feeling is good, they say: To what is this better feeling attributed? If the hon. member from West Toronto (Mr. Hocken) had developed his auditive sense to the same degree that he has cultivated and fostered his labouring mind in the discrediting of all that is French and Catholic in this country he would have known that the answer had already been given more than once to his query by a man who has been sitting in this House for over forty years, and who has , full authority to speak- in the name of his compatriots, for he is one of the most noble figures which our race and this country generally have ever produced. On April 5th, 1918 (page 410 of Unrevised Hansard) this hon. gentleman spoke as follows of the French Canadian people: I know the people well, an-d I repeat what I said on a former occasion, that there is not to be found, in any pant of Canada, a more peaceable or law-abiding population. The hon. gentleman from West Toronto will find a complete answer in this. The people of Quebec do not approve any more of conscription this year than they did last year, but they submit to the law because they are virtuous enough to do so. Let the fanatics and the pseudo builders of the Empire not forget this, even though a different announcement might be dearer t-o their hearts, that the French Canadians are such as represented by the gentleman I have just quoted; that they have been such in the past; that they shall continue in the future and remain forever a peaceful and law-abiding people. The people from eastern and western Canada, although they have often disagreed with us, have, to a large extent, endeavoured, so far as I am aware, to treat the French Canadians with consideration and respect, and I cannot thank them too heartily for this. Unfortunately the same cannot be said of Ontario. Just as Germany, at the time this war began, assumed the role of the bully of Europe, so Ontario has assumed the same nefarious role towards Quebec. Time flies quickly, and the day may not be far remote when some of the people of the sister province will meet their discomfiture; they will find that in bullying the peaceful province of Quebec, they have arrayed against themselves the other provinces of this Dominion. If I am saying this, it is because I have been able to come into touch with the sentiments of people from the Maritime and Western Provinces. At the present time we do not agree with the people of the Western Provinces on the matter of conscription; but I think I may be permitted to say in this House to-night, that I have listened to many a speech from these hon. members which has pleased me greatly. They are broad-minded people. The broadness of their minds seems to bear the print of the immensities of the prairies on which they live. We of the province of Quebec have always regarded these set-lers as our friends, and although we are separated on conscription to-day, we still regard them as our friends. As to the people from the Maritime Provinces, I have met several of them who still bear within themselves the old stamp of the Acadian civilization. Meekness, kindness, tenderness, are the words used by Longfellow when he speaks about those people, and1 we' still find the same spirit, to a large extent, if not wholly, in the Maritime Provinces. Why do we not find the same spirit in the province of Ontario? I have just said that some of the people of the province of Ontario, if things continue as they'are going on now, will some day or another meet their discomfiture. I feel- I hope for them I am mistaken-that the day will come when Quebec will stand like a giant stretching his powerful arms to era brace the East on the one side and the West on the other, on top and over the head of Ontario. -


?

An hon. MEMBER:

Never.

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L LIB
UNION

Richard Coe Henders

Unionist

Mr. R. C. HENDERS (Macdonald):

Mr. Speaker, I would not attempt to occupy the time of the House .at this late hour had it not been for the position, taken on more than one occasion by gentlemen, on the opposite side of the House with regard, to the attitude of certain members now occupying seats in the Union Government. I am not going into ancient history, for we have had a sufficient number of reviews to keep our memories fresh along that line for a considerable length of time, but I feel it is my duty to explain the position of a certain section on this side of the House in order that we may he properly understood.

When the war broke out in the year 1914, nearly all the people of Canada gave a great deal of time and thought to the issues that were at stake, to the questions involved and

the interests that had to toe considered. I along -with others gave som/e study to these matters, and two months and a half after the war bro-ke out, at a very large gathering representative of a large proportion of the agricultural interests of the province of Manitoba, I made the statement that Canada was in this war to win, even if it - involved the sacrifice of the last man and the last dollar; in it because we were defending the great principle of democracy and the great principle of liberty; in it because if we failed to defend that which had cost our forbears so dearly, nothing else mattered much. My recollection is that .after full and deliberate discussion of the stand Canada should take in the war was submitted by Government to the House, by a unanimous vote Parliament decided to participate in this war. Furthermore, not only the people's representatives in this House but the people of Canada themselves in their trades- unions and different organizations called together for the special purpose of making a pronouncement on this question, almost unanimously agreed that we were in this war to a finish, no other course being open to us.

I am glad to hear hon. members on the opposite -side of the House profess their desire to see this war won, tout putting the professions they make in this mild form alongside other expressions they have given utterance to outside this House, I am constrained to think that their ardour slackens somewhat when they reach the eastern part of the Dominion of Canada. Down there, their utterances are more like this: Yes, we are in -the war, and you may do your part but it is just as you feel about it; if you like to enlist, all right; if you do not like to, it is a question fo-r you to decide. That kind of teaching does not work up much enthusiasm in bringing men out to fight, and it seems to me it has had its influence on voluntary enlistments in the province of Quebec. While that was the attitude of that province under the'voluntary system-indifference, .slowness to take hold, lack of -enthusiasm on- -the part of -their leaders-when it was found that the voluntary system was not bringing the men forward as fast as the country demanded and conscription was introduced, these men who had taken little advantage of their opportunities under the voluntary system insistently cried out, "Give us the voluntary system again; let us work along the old line." There has not been as much enthusiasm shown by the leaders of 'the people in the

.

eastern part of Canada, especially in the province of Quebec, as I should like to have seen.

I wish to dwell more particularly on the position occupied by those wtoo are looked upon -as formerly entertaining Liberal views, and wiho now find themselves occupying positions on this- side of the House -in a Win-the-war -Government. Some of us looked, and looked earnestly, to see a united effort on the part of the East and the West to win this war. We felt there was no room for provincial lines, that Canada was in this war, and that every man, every woman and every dollar should be in it, in order that we might win. -Seeing the -attitude of -the Opposition- on this win-the-war policy, and the attitude of the Government then in power, and th-eir aggressive mood towards winning the war, we were forced, to the conclusion that the only policy open to those who were in earnest in their determination to win the war was- to get together, to stand shoulder to shoulder and to fight it out to a finish.

I have pleasure in expressing my appreciation and delight with the Budget speech as presented by the hon. Acting Minister of Finance (Mr. A. K. Maclean). It is going a long way in the direction of the teachings set forth by the large interest in the West which I have the honour of belonging to. An hon. member of the Opposition this afternoon read from a certain platform setting forth the views of the -Canadian Council of Agriculture -and of the Grain Growers associations, but, instead of reading the whole of that platform the hon. member only read a part -of it. He stopped at the place that -suited his purpose. He gave us the policy dealing with the tariff and I want to say to that hon. gentleman and hon. gentlemen before me to-night that the people in the West representing the great agricultural industry have not changed their position one iota in regard to the tariff policy. I believe it is the right policy for -Canada and we believe the day will come in the not very far distant future when the principles inculcated in the platform which has been laid down by the Grain Growers- will have influence, and sway in this House and the country will get the benefit of the teaching and thinking that has- been put into that platform. .

I would like to -say, and I say it with a great deal of pleasure, that the Government in power previous to the Union Government had their ear pretty close to the ground in regard to some of the planks in that platform and in the last session, when the Conservative party were in power, we

find tha,t two important planks of that platform were incorporated in the policy of the Government.

The great issue in the last election before the people of the constituency of Macdonald which I have the honour to represent, and on which the battle was fought, was the winning of the war-the German attitude towards civilization and democracy and the conflict 'was therefore autocracy and democracy. The question was, -winch .should triumph? We believed that the principles of democracy .should triumph. That was the platform upon which the battle was fought. The West set forth that platform, the people stood behind it, and as a result the representation in this House is what it is to-day. That was the cry all through the West, the war was the issue.

I believe the people of Canada are behind this Union Government and are saying to it: " Go ahead and win the war; if it takes men to win the war, we will give you men; if it needs money we will give you money, - but go ahead and win." I know that here and there you will find men who entertain a different view. You will find those who, because of personal interest, or personal motives, will contend otherwise, but the predominating sentiment of Canada is that there is a struggle going on that will mean much in the future history of the world, and that we must see to it that the principles for which we contend will triumph in that struggle.

Now I propose to deal with a question that I should have dealt with before I expressed the last thought that was in my mind. I want to call attention to the attitude which was taken in the West with regard to the question of the fiscal policy that should be adopted. This policy was very largely discussed on the platforms of the West and the attitude taken by myself, as well as other representatives of the great agricultural organizations, was that if the Government introduced in 'connection with the winning of the war the other planks of the farmers' platform, they would, through them, in a large measure, secure for war purposes the results that they hoped to secure from the tariff. I would like to see some change in the tariff, even although that change were small. If the present Government could see its way clear to removing the 7J per cent duty introduced as a war revenue measure, and allow the money which would accrue from this reduction to go for the purpose of increased production, it would at least be a step in the right direction and the country ait large would benefit thereby. Failing that, so long as the Government carry out their promise in regard to introducing a fiscal policy that would tax incomes and undue profits made under the tariff system we will give it our support, as by that means the same object would be attained and the money would reach the coffers of the Government for war purposes.

I did not intend to. weary the House with a speech, but I only wanted to put myself and the people of the West straight in regard to our attitude in connection with this win-the-war Government.

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L LIB

Lucien Turcotte Pacaud

Laurier Liberal

Mr. L. T. PACAUD (Megantic):

Mr. Speaker, it is fortunate for one who is not too well versed in matters of finance, that it .should be customary in a debate such as this to drift from, the somewhat dry and monotonous discussion of figures to the wider range of national and political issues so intimately involved with the Budget and which have never ceased, to interest and to divide men of different political creeds. Whatever justification there may have been in the past for this frank and outspoken exchange of views, it seems to me, Sir, that .such a course imposes itself upon us with greater force to-day in view of the unusual circumstances in which we meet. The Acting Minister of Finance, in his annual statement, has given us the financial condition of the country for the last twelve months. In perusing the figures which he presented to us a few days ago, with the care and attention which it was our dirty to bring to our task, we could not help but realize still more forcibly the true meaning of war; its ever-increasing toll; the varied and complex problems which have arisen and which will continue to increase as this bitter struggle goes on. Let me summarize, Sir, what, I gather, is our present financial position. It may be said that this war has for the time being apparently made our people prosperous. Our trade has reached an extraordinary figure; and our revenue for the year amounts to $258,000,000. This is, Sir, no doubt, the brightest phase of our financial statement, and yet when we stop to- scrutinize its true meaning we are quickly drawn to the conclusion, that this passing wave of prosperity, this enormous expansion of our trade, rests on a purely fictitious basis; that it lacks the permanency, which alone would make it sound and stable. We clearly see that when this war comes to an end, as rapidly as our war contracts have ceased

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WBVlSED EDITION


to bring in their unusual and abnormal profits, so rapidly shall we return to the normal state of pre-war days. To convince us, Sir, of this fact, we have but to picture to ourselves our munition plants suddenly closing their doors, at least one-half million of men strolling our streets on the lookout for a new means of livelihood, the readjustment of our industrial life made necessary to meet the new conditions and, above all this, the gradual flow of 400,000 men of our Canadian soldiers returning from the fields of Flanders as rapidly as ships can bring them back, all looking for direction and advice from tbe State which they serve so well and so heroically. Sir, in the face of such vast problems, coupled with the heavy financial obligations occasioned by the war-a burden which we readily accept, but a burden nevertheless-I venture to suggest that it is high time we Canadians at home should stop nibbling at each other -ps we have done in the past, stop sowing in this land of liberty the seeds of discord and of hatred, and recognize, late as it may be, that our work, a better or more useful work, lies in another direction. Sir, this war is costing us over $1,000,000 a day. Our public debt has reached the billion-dollar mark. Our interest charge is estimated at $78,000,000, and when we couple this amount with the sums that will be necessary to meet our payments on pensions, we have before us the prospect of being soon saddled with a fixed annual charge of not less than $100,000,000. We cannot wave aside lightly this enormouB financial obligation. It claims our best thought and our best consideration/. It reminds us of our plain and paramount duty, of putting into practice that policy of economy and retrenchment, which this Government has been most lavishly preaching to others without ever living up to it themselves, as their record of the last four years so clearly demonstrates, as the expenditures of the last year, amounting to $203,000,000, has again clearly shown to us. Let me hasten to say, that I know full well, that heavy as this financial burden may be, it will not deter the people of this country from doing their full duty to the bitter end. However long may last this war, the same spirit which animated the people of the country four -years ago is still intact to-day. We then unanimously decided to take our part in the fight for freedom. We, to-day, with the same unanimous voice, proclaim our determination to stand by our allies, until complete victory has crowned our efforts. It is, Sir, in this spirit, shared alike by all Canadians, that we have put to ourselves these two questions: First, how can we best serve to-day our allies? Second, in what, way can oui continued and active participation in the war be most effective to achieve the common purpose we have in view? There are those who believe that howeveT long the struggle, the policy of Canada should be more men and still more men for the front. It was this feeling, this belief, this policy, which brought about conscription. It was apparently upon this policy that Union Government was formed. It is not my intention -to dwell on the absolute failure of selective conscription. I was against that policy last year, I am still against it to-day. May I underline that by introducing amendments to the Military Service Act, so as to make it -more drastic, and in their opinion more effective, the Government themselves have recognized this failure. But, -Sir, there are others in this country, who though they believe that the decision that was taken in 1914, in so far as our participation -in this war was concerned, should not be altered to-day, are nevertheless of the opinion, that in view of the new conditions that have arisen, we must change our war methods, respond to the call of our allies, direct our national energy, not only in getting men to the front but also in meeting the new problem that is now upon us, the acceleration of our food production as an essential and vital war measure. Sir, We cannot minimize the vast importance of our food production at this moment. The Prime Minister in his speech on the Address, used these words: I .cannot emphasize too strongly the absolute, urgent, vital necessity of increased production of food in Canada during the next year. The issue of the war depends on it. Are we to remain deaf to this call from the front? Are we to minimize the importance of a policy, upon the success of which, the Prime Minister himself admits, " depends the issue of the war"? There can be but one answer to this question, and it is with this thought, prompted by this high motive, that those who have never ceased to advocate greater production have ventured not only to criticise the Government,-who went back on their policy in this connection-but again to suggest the best and only means to attain the object we had in view. Is it not reasonable, Sir, that taking it for granted that we are alUof one mind in acknowledging the importance of food production, we should also be united in a policy which tends to prevent that shortage of farm labour, by keeping our young farmers to their work, by educating them as to the importance of straining every nerve to do their utmost to produce food and still more food? And yet, Sir, the policy of the Government to-day tends to weaken, if not to destroy, this very purpose. What we are preaching to-day the Government had in mind when they drafted this Order in Council of the 3rd of December last. Political exigencies may have forced them to change their minds; national exigencies have prompted us to remain true to this very policy. Was not its importance again underlined at this very session by the Prime Minister himself, by the words which he uttered and which I have already cited? Again, if we are to .have more food production in this country-the issue of the war depends on it-is it not reasonable and logical that we .should endeavour to lay aside every obstacle which may curtail its success-a success without which, as Lord Rhondda says, " Victory may eventually slip from our grasp?" Andi when in pursuance of that policy we suggest that the duties on farming implements should be abolished, I ask you, Sir, is it fair, is it in the public interest, that our motives in this regard .should be challenged, as they were challenged a few days ago by the hon. member for St. Antoine (Sir Herbert Ames)? I can only say that the views that have been expressed in this House are shared' by a great many Canadians throughout the country. In this connection may I be permitted to read a short article on this very subject which appeared in the Saskatoon Star. It illustrates the case most satisfactorily, and is as follows:


May 7, 1918