March 20, 1922

THE GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH ADDRESS IN REPLY


Consideration of the motion of Mr. Mc-Murray for an Address to His Excellency the Governor General in reply to his Speech at the opening of the Session, resumed from Friday, March 17.


LAB

William Irvine

Labour

Mr. WILLIAM IRVINE (East Calgary) :

Mr. Speaker, it is with deepest sympathy that I refer to the absence of the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) from the House, especially when we consider the cause, the reg'rettable death of his brother. I am sure that the deepest sympathy of this whole assembly will be with him in his bereavement.

I have, along with other hon. members, I am sure, concurred in the congratulations that have been extended to yourself, Mr. Speaker, and therefore, it is not necessary to reiterate them. But I wish to congratulate the Government on being the Government. It might have been the Opposition. I wish to congratulate the Opposition on being the Opposition, because it might have been the Government. And, then, I wish to congratulate the Progressive group for the extraordinary position which they hold in this assembly. I think we may say that we have here, in tableau,

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that famous philosophic formula of Hegel. He attributes all progress to three factors, and we have them here. On the right of Mr. Speaker, we have the "thesis." On the immediate left of the Speaker, we have the "antithesis," and then along this side we are hoping we shall have a "synthesis." Of course, there can be no real progress until we reach an equilibrium between the two contending forces, and then we are in hopes that the Progressives will make the synthesis which will make the progress.

I do not think I would be justified in contributing to the prolonging of this debate if, by any chance, hon. members who preceded me had dealt with the two points which I am now going to take up before the House. This opportunity of expression comes to all of us as a traditional inheritance through our parliamentary system of government and it affords, in some instances, an exultant hour for doing so. Already two parties, striving for power, have had an opportunity to show their prowess. Already we have seen the war-scarred leaders of the past campaign flash their gleaming sabres of repartee across the old historic battleground, and nobody killed1, so far as I have been aware; but, at least, each has done his best to establish the traditions of the party to which he belongs. Others of us, those who happen to be celebrating our political birthday, the first one by the way, and also those who are venerable in the service in this House, have received this opportunity as a means of giving our old hustings speech a much-needed airing. But perhaps the greatest pleasure which is afforded by this means of expression which comes to us on the debate on the Address in reply to the Speech from the Throne, is the opportunity to give expression to ideas which, under a different parliamentary system, might possibly be our contribution towards the legislation of this country.

The Speech from the Throne must, of necessity, deal more or less with generalizations, and one is never too sure about agreeing whole-heartedly with generalizations, especially when we recognize that these deal very largely with matters of administration, and are really not legislative matters at all. For instance, in the Speech, we have talk of the good time that is coming bye and bye. I have no fault to find with the good time; I hope it is coming and that it is not so far off; but I have my doubts about that. We are told that foreign markets are being negotiated for. That is another matter

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that is in the hands of the administration itself. We are told that the responsibility for unemployment will not be assumed by the Government. We are told also that a postal conference has been arranged between the United States and Canada-another matter that has already been dealt with. We are told that the delegates have been chosen for the conference at Genoa-[DOT] another matter that has been already dealt with. Then, we have two co-ordinations, one of the Government railway system- another matter which is largely administrative, as was pointed out by the leader of the Opposition (Mr. Meighen)-and one of the Defence Department, another mater of administration. We are to have some change in the tariff We are not told whether that change is upwards, or downwards, or sideways; but it is to be some kind of a change. Then, perhaps, something is to be done with freight rates. That is a summary of what is contained in the Speech from the Throne. In so far as there are legislative matters in this, and giving to it the most generous interpretation, I find myself in agreement with a good deal; but I also find myself in disagreement with some parts which I will mention before I have finished my remarks. I am, however, more particularly concerned with some things that are not mentioned in the Speech from the Throne, so upon these things I will, more or less, concentrate my effort.

Of course, we all have matters of paramount importance; their paramount importance and their urgency depend, of course, upon who is talking about them; but with me there are two matters of paramount interest which, so far, have not been brought before the House. The first is the necessity for the readjustment of this govermental institution in keeping with the changes that are reflecting themselves in the various groups which we have in this House; and the second is to find food, clothing and shelter for people who, we are assured by the Government's statistician, have actually produced about twice as much of these things as they are permitted to use. The first is a political question, and I feel constrained to deal with it because the difference betweeen this House to-day and any previous parliament rests in the fact that we have some new political alignments and political expressions that are represented here directly as a result of what we may call a political revolt against the party system of government. If that political revolt was necessary on the hustings, and if it

has already taken place in many constituencies throughout Canada, it is just as necessary that it should take place in this House. So that it is well that some emphasis should be placed on the importance of this question.

The other question concerns a pressing industrial problem which we can scarcely afford to pass by without serious consideration. I believe that we are to-day face to face with a new social order, and I think fundamental economic and political reconstruction of society is imminent. The evidence of this is found in what is commonly termed "unrest," and surely there is sufficient unrest, not only in Canada but throughout civilization, to make us pause and inquire into the meaning of it. On consideration we find that we are doing to-day in Canada and in other parts of the civilized world, precisely what the world has done many times previously in its history: society is seeking to accommodate itself to the new developments in life, industrially, socially, politically, and otherwise. This unrest of which we hear so much is, therefore, nothing new, although people seem to fear it; it is only a repetition of what has occurred at other periods of the world's history. We might go back in imagination to the time when society was in its plasmic form, when the individual first passed into the tribal state. There must have been unrest at that time, though, manifestly, not to the same extent as there is to-day, because the conditions of society were so much more plastic. When that tribal society passed into the state, involving slavery there was another period of unrest; and when slavery gave way to feudalism the same disturbance was repeated. And the same is true in regard to the replacing of feudalism by capitalism or individualism. Now, if we were to conclude that society, as it exists at present, had reached the ultimate stage of its evolution, that we were to stop here and go no further, then I should be at a loss to explain the meaning of this unrest. If, however, we come to the conclusion that society is still upon the march and that we are at the present moment at the intermediate stage between individualism and some other type of society, then we must ask the question: Shall not this

Government seek to mould this political institution of Parliament which I presume does represent to a very large extent the industrial development of the country to the inevitable changes that we are witnessing, in such a manner as to make it work as smoothly and with as much justice to all parties as possible? To speak of mak-

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ing any modification in our parliamentary system may, to some minds, smack of irreverence or lack of appreciation of our British constitutional system. But let me hasten to say that it is really out of the pro-foundest respect for the best spirit of our British system of government that I am going to put forward my proposal.

The greatness of the British constitution, it may he said, lies in the fact that it is not fixed; that is, it possesses the elasticity of life. It has that most necessary quality, adaptation; and it has always in the past been able to accommodate itself to the changes that have taken place in industrial life. It is not, of course, like the American constitution, which is more or less fixed. That constitution is very much in the nature of a political yardstick. It is brought out from time to time, and the people are virtually told: you must not cut off more, or less, political cloth than you were told to do by Washington. The British constitution as it has been well described by someone, is a constant progress "from precedent to precedent." We shall not therefore find ourselves violating the great principle of the British constitution in seeking to secure modifications of our present parliamentary system to accommodate changes in our own political life. Someone-I believe it was one of our lady politicians in Canada, not, by the way, the lady member of this House (Miss Macphail)-has asked the question, what has made Great Britain great? In answer to her own question she said pratically this: In every great crisis of the nation's history, Great Britain has always possessed men of sufficient vision and sufficient courage to see coming changes and to make them before revolt forced the issue; and in that, she said, is to be found Britain's greatness. Now, every system, whether of government or of economics, has sprung from some fundamental human need; but we know also that systems which at one time possessed qualities of great value and which have served well in the past, through generations have become an actual hindrance to progress. Sometimes institutions have got so much out of touch with actual life that they stand in the way. If therefore systems and institutions spring from fundamental human needs, we must recognize that such needs are the paramount things to be considered, and that no system at any time must take precedence to human interest. Systems have been made by men for men, and this

boasted system of ours was also made by men to meet human needs; and there is no good reason why we should not make it better if we can, or modify it so as to suit our own purposes and serve our own time better than it is capable of doing as at present constituted. Systems that have continued after having ceased to be of the greatest usefulness have the tendency to mould men after their cast-iron fashion rather than to recognize the principle that men should modify systems. And that, by the way, seems to me to be just about what this Government wants to do. The Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) has said on the floor of the House that he had made an offer to the Progressives that they should have an opportunity, if they desired it, of securing representation in the Government; but he added the proviso that this must be upon the condition that they should cease to be Progressives, and become Liberals, whatever that might mean. That is exactly what I am complaining about: it is a system seeking to modify the representatives of the House to its regulations, rather than recognizing the right of representatives to modify the system to suit themselves.

There is the difference; the Government like any other institution, must be a developing organism, inasmuch as we happen to be a developing people-humanity itself is a developing organism, if we may consider it as a unit. Therefore, this Government must keep pace with the people which it seeks to serve, and it must be prepared to meet with the ever-increasing complications of our industrial system. Look for a moment at the principle of development. That principle has been stated for us most admirably by Herbert Spencer in his "First Principles." You remember how he traces for us the trail of that principle as it goes through, first of all, the material universe. He takes us through that universe from the time when it was a whirling orb of fire in space to the time when it began to sustain living organisms, and on to the highest achievements of man in art and in social institutions. And the principle which goes through all those processes and systems is this-a movement from the simpler to the complex and from the indefinite to the definite.

In that connection, Mr. Speaker, to show that we are in harmony with the very principle of development itself, I would draw the attention of hon. members to the complicated political situation which we have

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here. In the first place. I want to speak of the group sitting to your right, which represents the Government; and it is sitting there because it happens to be the largest group. It happens to be so for a number of reasons, chief of which is that we have a system of voting which makes it very difficult for us to receive the prope'r expression of the will of the people at the ballot box, and if the figures given by the late Minister of Finance (Sir Henry Drayton) be correct, the Government represents about 41 per cent of the popular vote. But I am not quarrelling with that at all. They are the Government because they happen to have the largest group in this House, and they represent in my opinion-the statement of the hon. Minister of Justice (Sir Lomer Gouin) notwithstanding-the financial interests of this country primarily, but having, naturally, the desire that all the rest of us have to do the very best they can by the rank and file of the people as well. Of course, they have vociferated loudly against that charge, and some of them have actually risen to the point of oratory and punctuated their sentences with that much abused word, democracy, and told us that they seek to represent everybody. Well, democracy, no matter whether the term be used by hon. gentlemen on your right, Sir, or by those on your left, in popular parlance simply means an attenuated diaphanous nothing. As a matter of fact, the Government must take to itself the stigma which the hon. leader of the Opposition has placed upon them of being the representatives of the big interests. Then we look to the group which forms the so-called official Opposition, and I think we may say that they also when in power represent the big interests. They are what we might call to-day the politically unemployed, and are waiting their opportunity to serve the same interests, primarily that the present Government will serve. The third group is composed of representatives of the organized farmers. The fourth group-well, I must not forget the Independents, because I believe an hon. member stated that he was an Independent, that there were some others whom he described as half-independents, and still others who were near-independents. So, presumably, we have there also the nucleus of a group.

But that brings me to the consideration of the group for which I have the honour to speak this afternoon-the Labour group. We are very small, and for several reasons.

We are small because the great body of Labour has not yet been swung into political action; we are small also because the system of voting by means of which the present government holds power with 41 per cent of the total votes polled has prevented us through its gerrymandering from receiving the Labour vote that has been cast; then, again, we are small because of the way we are accustomed to measure things by so many tons avoirdupois, so much displacement, or by so many heads. If we are to measure that way we shall not make much of an impression on this House. However, I wish to state that the hon. member for Centre Winnipeg (Mr. Woodsworth) is the leader of the Labour group-and I am the group. But even if we are small, I should like to say, without any presumption whatsoever, that a small living seed, however small it may be, is greater than a dead trunk, however bulky it may be.

But the point to be made in this analysis is that each group represents a definite economic interest, and it is really futile to vociferate to the contrary. Each group has the right to be here and to make a contribution to the government of this country, and I am speaking in favour of the idea of so modifying our parliamentary system as to permit each group to make that contribution in a manner that will be satisfactory to itself and serviceable to Canada. The complex nature of this House is, as I have just intimated, evidence of the political betterment which corresponds to the nature of the economic structure of the state. Moreover, it is merely a replica of that which we find throughout the provinces. We find four or five groups in every provincial legislature; we observe the same tendency in Great Britain; we find some six groups in the parliament of South Africa; we find numerous groups in the parliaments throughout the various countries of Europe, each one reflecting that industrial development which has taken place during the last century.

These new factors mean a progressive readjustment of our political institutions in harmony with the economic life of the state. They must also be in harmony with the law of life generally; and that law, as stated by another authority, is that the internal must change to correspond with external changes. If that correspondence be not met, then there cannot be the fullest life. Therefore if this Parliament is to function in the highest interests of our people, it must find some way of modifying itself to correspond with the changes which

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I have referred to as having taken place in the constituencies outside. Our parliamentary system prohibits us from taking, as groups, any real active part in the government. We have a parliamentary system which presupposes only two parties. In other words, our system puts us in the position of a farmer who .has equipment for a two-horse team; by and by he gets another team and he has four horses, just as we have four groups; but not having the equipment for those extra horses they just stand in their stalls and eat oats -they do not do anything. That is the position in this House to-day. We have four groups, but we are working under a two-party system, with the result that the other two groups have little opportunity of making that contribution to the government of the country of which they are capable.

I would like to draw attention to this also: strangely enough, the 117 members who sit at the right of Mr. Speaker have generously undertaken to assume all the responsibility for the government of all the people of Canada, permitting the 117 who sit to the left of Mr. Speaker to go scot free, without any responsibility, without any regard to policy, and to become carping critics. Indeed, in some instances the 117 to the left of Mr. Speaker will do their best to hinder the other 117 from doing their work. That is the situation as I see it.

With regard to the selection of the Cabinet; with regard to the administration of the civil service and all appointments pertaining thereto; with regard to legislation itself, the Government has picked the pack and left the House to play With the rags. We may not enjoy playing with the rags, but it is all we have to play with at the moment. The procedure, then, would seem to drive representatives of Labour or members of the Progressive party either into the camp of the Opposition or into the camp of the Government. Jn other words, there is a refusal to recognize that there should be a place for such a person as a Progressive or such a person as a Labour man. As has been .stated by the hon. leader of the Progressives (Mr. Crerar) and also by the feader of the Labour group (Mr. Woods-worth), we are here to co-operate; that is the principle upon which we wish to work. But co-operation is not a give-away game; there must be some reasonable basis for cooperation, and it is in the hope that some such reasonable basis will be laid that I am dealing with this subject. for instance,

an issue develops here; something is advocated by the Government which Progressives or Labour men cannot support, and we have to choose between the defeat of the administration and the principle involved in the issue. Now, I as a Labour representative, have no interest in bringing about the defeat of the Government. I do not want to see this Government defeated; on the contrary, I -want to see it hold on and do good work for the people of Canada.

I have at least some confidence in it; I believe it is sincere1 and that It is going to try to do some good work. But when an issue develops in respect of which we differ from the Government in principle, we shall be forced to follow the principle involved in the issue; and then, as I understand the ordinary parliamentary practice, if the measure involving the Government policy is defeated by a vote of this House, the Government is bound to resign. To my mind, that is not a sound practice as things are to-day, and it should not be continued. I would like to see not only the Labour and the Progressive representatives .but also hon. members on the Government side quite free to vote upon any issue according to its merits and without any thought of saving the Government.

So far as the hon. Prime Minister has taken cognizance of the political developments to which I have referred, he has used it as a basis to re-establish the party system on psychological grounds. In his able article which appeared in Maclean's Magazine just before the beginning of the campaign he sets forth the philosophy of partyism on psychological grounds. Summarizing his theory with regard to the matter, I would say it is this: that we are born Grits or Tories, it is a matter of fixedness of mind, and these peculiar manifestations which take the form of Progressive, Labour and Independent are the result only of conditions brought about through the psychology of the war. These, he says, will pass away and we shall settle back to the two types of mind,-Grit and Tory. Well, if that is true, then we have removed the political struggle of the centuries from the field of economics, from the field of politics, even from the field of psychology, and have brought it into the field where it is nothing more than a contest in .fecundity. That is, if you are ever going to defeat the Liberal Government, more little Tories will have to be developed. That is the argument he has put forward. But as a matter of fact, the party system does not rest upon psychological grounds, although psy-

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, chology is always involved. If you go back to the history of the parties you will find that their origin rested upon a very definite economic basis. If you go back about two hundred years you will come to the beginning of this "grand old party" system of which we hear so much boasting and of whose glorious traditions we are frequently reminded. And what were those beginnings? At the beginning of the industrial period a few old feudal lords who were able to survive the catastrophe of the passing away of feudalism, wishing to retain at least some of the power which they had enjoyed, organized a party called the Tory party. The word "Tory" meant in those days "bog-trotter". Then, at the dawn of the industrial period, certain others challenged the right of these Tories to have all the political power, and their party was called "Whig"-a Scotch word, which by the way, means "soor dook"- sour milk, if you please. Both these parties did excellent work; through many centuries they struggled with a great deal of sincerity. They made a splendid contribution to democratic government; they have been largely responsible for arousing in the people of this age a deeper desire for that greater democracy which is reflected in the principles of the Progressive and Labour groups in this House. But we must not stop there. There were only two parties at that time because there were only two conscious economic classes. But if there had been six economic classes two hundred years ago, would our ancient forefathers have had a two-party system of Government?

I hardly think so; I think they would h_ve established a six-party system of government. So to-day we have this complicated political system reflecting industrial development, and we are called upon to do for the twentieth century what our forefathers did for the centuries that have preceded us,-[DOT] to modify the system of government in such a way as to make it practicable for Labour groups and Farmer groups to co-operate with any other kind of group in the best interests of this country. That is the plea I am trying to make; and in that connection I suggest-for it can only be a suggestion, of course,-that the Government move in that direction by not considering the defeat of a Government issue the defeat of the Government. That is not asking for very much,-and by the way, it might come in very handy sometimes for the Government, because it is not very strongly established as party governments go. We have just had, in the resignation of the Manitoba lMr. Irvine.]

government, an instance of the operation of this objectionable principle. There, a Liberal government was in power, although it was in the minority. If such an arrangement as I suggest had been effected there, they might not have been voted out of office; but situated as they were they could not adopt any courageous policy; they had to move along very cautiously, and, as a matter of fact, did not do very much of anything. Remove that condition of defeat when a government measure is voted down, and hon. members will be free to deal with the various issues coming before them according to their merits. It might also help to do away to some extent with what is called the "official" Opposition. The "official" Opposition is rather a strange thing to those of us who have been witnessing it in operation for the first time. Of course there is a psychological justification for opposition. It is admitted that what we call "opposition" is a factor in progress. But such opposition, if real, is always based upon a fundamental difference in principle. Viewed in this light, opposition is inevitable as long as the human mind is limited and has to deal with infinite problems. But I know of no place either in the world of matter or in the biological world where opposition exists for its own sake, except in parliament, and there we do find it established seemingly for its own sake. We do not need to cultivate that opposition which is justified by progress. That is a spontaneous thing; it springs from the very nature of the issue itself. Moreover it is constructive, because its ultimate aim is the discovery of the truth. But the opposition as we know it to-day is more or less of a crude burlesque of that psychological opposition which we find inseparable from a consideration by finite minds of infinite problems* and the Oppositions of parliament have one by one degenerated into a cantankerous negation more intent on casting slurs on the administration than upon cultivating a positive body of opinion. They are more anxious usually to gain power by sophistry, innuendoes and destructive criticism than by demonstrating their ability to have power by their wisdom. They seek power more through the weakness of the government than through their own strength. And, remember, I am not referring to the present Opposition in that regard. The present leader of the Opposition (Mr. Meighen) was Prime Minister of this country not so very long ago, and the present Government was then the Opposition, and it must be

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said that the leader of the Opposition had, when Prime Minister, perhaps the heaviest task that has ever fallen upon the shoulders of a Canadian statesman. What did we find at the time? The artificial political alignment that supported him collapsed, industry stopped to breathe after its great war effort. Thousands of returned men were coming home to civil life, themselves a problem, and constituting another problem by intensifying the struggle in the industrial field. The state had been bled white financially, and, worst of all, the enthusiasm of the people was dead; but notwithstanding all these difficult conditions he had to face, the Prime Minister of that day had to contend with a carping, critical Opposition that passed no opportunity whatsoever to use any idea that could be used either by innuendo or otherwise for political purposes. I am not criticising that Opposition for being in opposition; that is the nature of this thing we call opposition; both they and the Government were doing excellently well what they were supposed to do. But I am speaking against the thing itself. I am not referring' to any personal action. Personality has little to do with the governmental structure other than as it governs the. responsibility of individuals to conditions which they cannot control unless the source from which they spring is altered.

We have had some very brilliant passages-at-arms in this debate between the leader of the Opposition and the leader of the Government, but as I have already indicated, (that amounts to little. The

people of this country are not interested in that kind of thing. We are not interested as to whether the leader of the Opposition has discovered that the Prime Minister is saying something in this House different from what he said during the campaign;- if he is, that is a matter for congratulation. Nor, on the other hand, are we at all worried if the Prime Minister has discovered that the leader of the Opposition has changed his mind since the Speech from the Throne several years ago; for that, too, would be a matter for great congratulation. So what seem to them matters of serious crime are matters of great congratulation for the people generally. Moreover, I have noticed that the Government insists upon rubbing it in that the leader of the Opposition is a bad loser. Well, there is another virtue, and that is not to talk too loudly about a little victory you may have secured, and I think that might fit the Government about as well

as the charge which they make against the leader of the Opposition. But, after all, these things do not really matter. I think it was Bentham who wrote in the eigtheenth century, "A man of talents should use them for his country in every way in which he can be serviceable." I therefore would suggest that the undoubted talent which the leader of the Opposition and the Prime Minister of this country possess should be used by them in a patriotic sense, that is, on the great questions that are confronting the Canadian people at this time. I would like to see their keen intellectual powers of analysis centered upon such questions as the national debt, our paralyzed industrial life, unemployment, and the co-operative social order that is dawning.

Before passing from this subject, I want to say that I believe that any Opposition as we have it to-day is a very dangerous thing, because it seeks to undermine the confidence of the people in all forms of government whatsoever. We have had some manifestations of that desire in the past few years both in Canada and Great Britain. There have been people who said "We do not believe in any kind of government". Why did they say that? Surely, if all that is said by oppositions of governments, and all the charges made by governments against oppositions are to be believed, it is no wonder that the rank and file of the common people should have a very low concept of government. So, I want to say that in my opinion the opposition tactics in our party system are doing more to undermine the respect and confidence of the people in any kind of government than any other institution in the Dominion of Canada.

Belloc in his "House of Commons and Monarch" tells us that the House of Commons is an aristocratic institution, but that aristocracy has ceased to be aristocratic and the people have lost their awe and worship of the aristocracy, which really constitutes the basis of the system. This Parliament might be described as in some sense an oligarchy with a democratic visiting card which it presents once in every four years, but even if we dignify it by the name of a democracy, we might take a good hint from Belloc and realize that if we continue to use this kind of tactics we shall disgust the people even with democracy, and they will not want to continue an institution of this kind. Moreover, we find that the spirit which is generated by the antagonism of party-

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ism is not the best kind of spirit. The Minister of Justice (Sir Lomer Gouin), towards the close of his address the other day, made a plea for co-operation or unity. While I noticed that the hon. gentleman took shelter behind the old feud between the provinces in answering the charges of the Opposition, nevertheless, I think the plea which he made was very timely.

I want to make a plea for co-operation. Let us get over this cantankerous negation of oppositions, and let us make it possible for every one to make a contribution and assume some responsibility for the deliberations of this Parliament. I believe that co-operation can be worked in parliament just as it is working in the great industrial system. I believe in cooperation in government, because it is already working unconsciously in the industrial field. I believe in co-operation in government because the fact of interdependence between the industrial life of the nation and international life is one of the most significant facts of modern history. We have been forced to co-operate through the industrial process of our time, and we are also being forced to co-operate in government by the political necessities of our time.

I want to speak now of the next question, which is that of the food, clothing and shelter of our people. We have already produced twice as much as we are permitted to consume. You will remember the problem as it was stated so admirably and so graphically by the hon. member for Centre Winnipeg (Mr. Woodsworth). He gave us something of the extent as well as of the intensity of this problem of unemployment, and he advanced, among other things, the consideration that organized labour throughout Canada has endorsed, some scheme of unemployment insurance chargeable to the industries of the country. We emphasize that because it is a necessity at this time. We do not recognize that it embodies an ultimate solution of the problem. But inasmuch as the governments-Dominion and provincial, as well as municipal-are to-day handing out for no service, doles which corrupt those who give and corrupt those who receive, it might be as well if some insurance scheme were developed which would place upon the shoulders of the Government the responsibility of finding work for those people who to-day are receiving doles for doing no work. I will not, however, traverse the ground which my hon. friend covered; I will take

up this problem from a slightly different angle. I would like to say that I was very much disappointed with the statement in the Speech from the Throne that this Government considers it to be the duty of the municipal and provincial governments to look after the unemployed. I want to say in that connection that a mere statement in the Speech from the Throne is not sufficient to throw off the shoulders of the federal government the responsibility for unemployment which grows out of the industrial system of this country. The unemployment situation is but the fruit of a tree, the roots of which reach to the very subsoil of our national economic system. Unemployment is a permanent thing as long as the present system exists. In this connection I wish to quote very briefly from one who ought to know what he is talking about in this regard; I am going to quote an excerpt from the report of a commission of the Ontario Government of which Sir John Willison happened to be the chairman:

The result of their enquiries has impressed on your Commissioners most forcibly the fact that the depression, which occurred in 1914 and 1915, was but a phase of the movement alternating' between inflation and depression, which is a characteristic feature of modern industry. A false sense of security should not blind the business world, in times of thriving trade, to the fact that wide-spread unemployment is likely to recur in future.

Seemingly, this is a recurring defect in our system, and we have to find out where that defect resides. What is the situation to-day? Let us confine our inquiry for the moment to Canada. There is somewhere a chronic defect in the industrial machinery. We find on the one hand that great industrial enterprises are on the very borders of collapse; we find that industrial strife is rampant; we find that unemployment is extensive and exists throughout the Dominion. Employer and employee, producer and consumer, alike are dependent on the industrial machine provided for the individuals of the nation by

4 p.m. producing goods as, when and where required. This is, of course, the accepted purpose of industries, namely, to produce goods that will meet the needs of humanity. But production for money has in some ways superseded the production for the supplying of human need. In this substitution of a secondary aim, we find the cause of our industrial chaos.

Now, let us look more definitely at this problem. Will anyone say, will any hon.

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member of this House say, that our factories are idle in Canada to-day because there is no demand for our goods? Will anyone say that our factories are idle because we have not sufficient raw material or sufficient plant to produce goods? Will anyone say that our factories are idle because we have not got the men to put in them to produce goods? In so far as demand goes-and I think you will agree with me that demand is one of the first necessities to any industrial enterprise-I question whether it was ever greater in the history of Canada than it is at the present time. The population as a whole would seem to be desirous not only of maintaining its present standard of living, but of raising it wherever possible. For the desires of Labour men have long since passed the mere asking for a greater wage; they are asking to-day for a fuller life, for the means of education, for the development of every potentiality which they possess. Not only so, but it is safe to say that there is an actual demand, through under-consumption in our home market to-day, for about twice as much as we are now consuming. The housing condition is a case in point. It has been estimated by a joint conference of the building and construction industries of Canada which was held, I think, in Ottawa, in May, 1921, that we need 158,000 new houses. Now, that was some time ago. Just take into consideration the increased need through marriages and immigration, and I do not think it is overstating the facts to say that to-day we need at least 200,000 new houses in Canada. With a need such as that, with the necessity for 200,000 new houses, we have 200,000 men walking the streets of our cities without work. On the other hand we have unlimited supplies of natural resources and sufficient plant to convert these natural resources into commodities necessary for the building of these houses. Yet the factories are idle, men are idle, and we have not got the houses. Clearly, then, the paralysis of industry in Canada is not due to lack of demand; it is not due to a lack of natural resources; it is not due to a lack of plant; it is not due to a lack of people to operate these plants; but it seems to be due to a lack of finance, to a lack of financial credit if you wish. If that is not what it lacks I would like the members of this House, and particularly the Government, to take this question up and tell us what is lacking. Surely it is time that somebody discovered what is lacking. At the very

least, we cannot afford to pass the problem by without studying it. It is here for us to solve, it is pressing, it is important; and so if what I have stated is not what is lacking it might be well if someone would come and tell us what is lacking.

The former Minister of Finance (Sir Henry Drayton) spoke to us several hours but failed to touch on this question.

I. was in hopes that he would give us his views upon such a thing as the gold standard and the futility of trying to restore it; I am still in hopes that the present Finance Minister (Mr. Fielding) will give us that information, that we may know whether it is worth while chasing that ancient rainbow, trying to catch up with the credit system which seems to recede from us two steps for every one we are able to move towards it; and that we may try tc find out whether there is anything wrong with the system of credit. In this connection I would like to quote to you very briefly from the statements of some men who presumably would know something about the unemployment phase of industrialism in its relation to the credit system. The Premier of Great Britain has declared that "Credit is the oxygen of trade." Professor Gustav Cassels, the eminent Swedish political economist, has denounced the deflation system, the withholding of credit facilities from trade and industry, and says:

This policy is responsible in great measure for unemployment and world trade stagnation.

Sir Peter Rylands, President of the Federation of British Industries, declares:

Another direction in which some relief might be found would be provided by an increase in the purchasing power of the community.

Sir William Beveridge, Director of the London School of Economics has asserted that

-the ultimate cause of unemployment lay in the credit system.

Sir Auckland Geddes, speaking before the Canadian Bar Association told a story of a Scottish friend of his who had ventured into this field of inquiry, and who, after very extensive study, came to a conclusion, which he gives in the following words:

I believe we'd be rid o' a' this trouble if people would only realise that money is a meta-phee-sical obstruction, and not a reality.

But if, as these men of great standing say, credit is the breath of life to industry, if it has the power to bring world organizations and industry to stagnation, if it has the power to throw hundreds of thous-

The Address

ands out of employment, then even though it be a metaphysical obstruction, or even though it be a mere accounting system upon the books of the world, it is a question of sufficient importance to engage the attention of this House, and to call forth, for the information, not only of this House, but of the people of Canada, all that financial experts in our midst may have; first-hand information, given to us in such a way that it may be understood.

The present industrial plight, as we have seen, is not caused by a lack of demand; it is not caused by lack of raw materials, or plant, or equipment, or people to work. What then is the cause? I assert that it is the credit system. The present credit system has failed, seemingly, in its proper function, which is to link together, in some way, the needs of the people with the productive powers of the people, and the credit system lies, too, at the very base of our industrial pyramid. But there is some element of profundity that surrounds the study of credit. We are shoo-ed away from any attempt to find out anything about the banking system, and it is assumed that the ordinary layman should never dare to attempt to sound the unfathomable depths of this wonderful system of finance. As a matter of fact that may be very true, but we find that people, nevertheless, are beginning to challenge it. There is, of course, great difficulty in finding the proper information. Credit, being of a basic character, its nature is not easy to discover. Moreover, it involves a great deal of technical study which the common citizen wishes to dodge if he possibly can. Nevertheless, the credit system has received a challenge. Organizations throughout Canada are studying it now to the best of their ability. I have in my hand a resolution which I desire to read to the House, merely for the purpose of sustaining this point, that credit has received this challenge, that great organizations today are making it a subject of study, and that, in spite of the quietness and oblivion into which it has been thrown, they are going to find out about this thing. " This is a resolution passed at the annual convention of the United Farmers of Alberta, and although it is, perhaps, a little more lengthy than the other quotations which I have given, I will read it simply to show hon. members that these people are thinking about this system. I am not saying that they have the right idea in this reso-

lution; I simply say that they are on the trail of the idea, and that some day they will find it:

Resolved that the United Farmers of Alberta request their elected representatives at Ottawa to present a bill to the House of Commons for enactment having for its object the establishment of a loan department along the following lines:

1. That the Treasury Board shall issue on the terms and for the purpose herein mentioned, full legal tender notes from time to time to meet the business requirements of the country;

2. That all such notes shall be legal tender for all and payable for all debts, public and private, and shall be a first lien upon all the assets and services of the people of the Dominion for their redemption, and all Dominion currency now issued shall be made full legal tender;

You see, it is technical.

3. That this money be loaned direct to the people at cost, on the following securities: Federal Bonds, Provincial Bonds, Urban and Rural Municipal Bonds, on improved, inhabited and used farms, the amount so loaned not to exceed a fixed margin of safety. The range of securities upon which loans are made to be gradually extended from time to time by statutory amendment as experience and development of the system shall warrant:

4. That upon the payment to the department of any loan, the amount of money so received shall be held in the department and either cancelled or used in making new loans to meet the requirements of the country. Preference in these loans to be given to those parts where interest rates are the highest.

5. That the earnings from the Loan Department from all sources after paying the conservative and legitimate expenses of the department and its branches, if such exist, shall be applied to the payment of the general expenses of the Government, thus reducing taxation upon the people.

You see, the question is up; it is the coming question; people everywhere are studying it, and we have demands for things such as national banks. Some people seek to repudiate the gold standard and to substitute for it hours of labour. We have again such means of exchange suggested as "time energy." There are a number of other suggestions, and I am ffoing, just for a few minutes, to introduce into the House the principles of another system. I am not declaring this system is any better than the others; I am going to present its principles, simply in order that I may be permitted to make a certain request to this House with regard to proposals which I shall hereafter set forth.

Money has at least two functions,-[DOT] although those of us who are expert financiers may find other functions for it. It is a medium of exchange and it has also a power to represent demand. This second power seems to be the greater or more

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important of the two; and though there should be a definite relation between money and ability of production to fulfil demand, we find that no such relationship exists. We have criticisms levelled against it, not only because of the cost to the people, not only because of the manner of its issue, but because of the way in which it is controlled. The whole price of an article must cover wages, salaries and other dividends. Therefore, it cannot be expected that the wages of an individual can buy back what he produces, inasmuch as the price of the thing that he produces, includes his own wages, overhead expenses, cost of raw materials, and the dividends and profits of the operators. If your wages happen to be fifty per cent of the price of the article, you can obviously buy only fifty per cent of what you produce. Incidentally, that is exactly what we are doing in Canada. According to the figures of the Dominion Statistician, we are producing twice as much as we are permitted to consume. The demand is still great; but with the wages paid to us, we cannot buy back enough of what we have produced to meet our needs. The present system of credit is not, according to some people, the best thing for industry. The home market is, of course, determined by the amount of goods that the wages that are paid to the people at home can buy. If we can buy only fifty per cent of what we produce, our market is limited by fifty per cent. Consequently, we find our Government looking out for foreign markets, and this was stated in the Speech from the Throne. Where are we going to find them? Foreign markets do not come to us like driftwood, and are not picked up on the seaboard, foreign markets can be created only when we are able to increase the purchasing power of the people who live where those foreign markets are; because it is only by increasing the purchasing power of the people that you can enable them to buy from you. How does the Government propose to increase the purchasing power of the people of South Africa, of Europe, of China or of South America? I think it is more reasonable for us to hope that we might increase the purchasing power of the people of Canada. If we could enable the people of Canada to buy twice as much as they are now buying,-we should have a very extensive home market. The leader of the Opposition (Mr. Meighen) was right, when during the recent campaign, he emphasized the necessity for developing home markets. Of course,

I part company with him immediately when he says that we are to develop the home market by increasing the tariff. He will develop the home market by increasing the tariff, while, on the other hand, strangely enough, the Government will develop it by the opposite method of decreasing the tariff. Well, we can leave the two parties to fight that question out between themselves. Personally, I do not think it will make any difference to our markets whether we increase or decrease the tariff, because that is not really a fundamental economic question at all. It is, rather a most excellent political football, which has been kicked across the field of public opinion for forty years, with no effect in increasing foreign markets. Neither the Government that advocated an increase of the tariff, nor the Government that urged its decrease, has advanced the markets in this country very materially. So that we may be justified in looking in other directions for a market for the produce of Canadian workmen.

The greatest charge I have to make against the present Government is as regards the issue of credit money. It is not necessary to say that the banks to-day have a monopoly of the issuing of financial credits; and the credit is usually issued in the interests of the shareholders and not for the benefit of the country. It is also issued with an adherence to the gold standard and not on a proper economic basis. The volume of credit is created and issued by the banks irrespective of demand or ability to produce. Thus we in Canada to-day are really at the mercy of Wall Street, whether we realize it or not. We are manipulated by them, from booms to slumps, at their convenience. To remedy this I believe that some new system must be found; or perhaps there should be some reorganization of the old system,-that is for the Government to consider. I believe, that first of all, there must be a regulation of prices upon an economic basis. This would mean that prices would be determined by a correct ratio between total national, production and total national consumption. At present, prices include cost of plant and overhead, materials, dividends, wages, etc. These expenses are charged and are paid always by the consumer,

there is no one else to pay them. Prices therefore could be reduced by the amount of capital expended in production, which expenditure could be made good to the capitalist by an issue of Government treasury notes. Such notes would represent the difference be-

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tween the total cost incurred and the total price received. In this way prices would be reduced automatically without a loss to any private enterprise. The recognition of real credit as created by and belonging to the community must underlie any such proposition, and we therefore, of course, look upon credit in this respect as being a correct estimate of the ability to produce and deliver goods as, when, and where required. You will recognize in that statement the famous Douglas definition of credit, a system of credit which is being advocated by some very great authorities in the financial world at the present time. I am not, of course, setting it forth here, as the one inevitable way, but I mention it more in detail than I mention the others because it seems to me to be the most practicable; and I shall possibly look at the question further before I conclude.

There are two factors employed in real credit, namely, needs to be satisfied and ability to produce; and both producers and consumers are necessary in the creation of such credit. On this basis treasury notes could be issued periodically to represent real credit as it expands or contracts. There could not be any inflation such as was experienced during the war that would be checked by the regulation of prices. Such a system might be arranged on the principle of decentralized control. It would not operate properly in a bureaucratic system such as would likely be developed by government ownership. Government ownership is a very difficult thing. It is yet to be tested, and I have not very much faith in it whether in regard to railroads, or banks, or any other institutions. It may be a very good midway between individualistic control and any other form which might be in process of development. Government ownership might not do any more than transfer control from an efficient autocratic corporation to a less efficient and possibly bureaucratic state organization. But, by a proper decentralized system of controlling credit on the basis that credit is created by the community, belongs to the community,' and should be operated by the community, it might be possible for organizations such as Boards of Trade, the Manufacturers' Association, the United Farmers, the organized Labour movement, the Great War Veterans' Association and similar bodies, to handle their own credit. But first we must realize what credit actually means and proceed to establish a system on that basis.

We should also require to have a national clearing house. In other words, a proper democratic system of credit should be organized, a system which would provide the greatest amount of local responsibility and control consistent with that measure of unity necessary to secure efficiency; in other words, a method which would combine the excellencies of individualism and of communism without involving the errors and weaknesses of either.

Let me put this system before the House by means of analogy. We hear much talk to-day of commonwealth; we have substituted the word " commonwealth " for the old term " empire." We are now known as a " commonwealth of free nations." As a matter of fact, however, we have no commonwealths to-day, but if we had a commonwealth there would be, I presume, an annual dividend of surplus national wealth to be divided amongst its citizens. That, of course, would be very Utopian, so Utopian that we can scarcely even mention it. But the Douglas system, to which I have referred, and which I would commend the House to study, would make it practicable to receive our dividend in the commonwealth in the form of reduced prices. One credit system is based on the idea that real credit is created by the community through its producing power and belongs to the community, by whom it should be operated. The other credit system assumes that credit should be created for and by a small group of financiers to be handled on the gold basis of value with a view to the shareholders' profits, and not in the interests of industry. The latter is our present system, and its central error is that it is not concerned with the production of goods but with the production of money. If you make credit facilities more available there follows an immediate inflation, which reduces purchasing power, as happened during the war. Under the system I mention, however, this would be impossible by [DOT] reason of the regulation of prices on the basis of a correct ratio between the consuming power of the people and their producing power. The fixing of prices which we had during the war was not, of course, of the type which I referred to. That was more or less mechanical, and it left too much power-dangerous power-in the hands of a small commission. It was an annoyance both to manufacturers and retailers, and did not contribute a sufficient quota of good to recompense them for all their trouble. But there would be no dan-

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ger in any such system if we could find a measure of local control such as I have suggested.

With regard to foreign markets in connection with our credit, inasmuch as we cannot create foreign markets, unless we can increase the purchasing power of the people of the countries with which we wish to trade, we had better turn our attention to our own markets. If we had control of our own financial credit it would be possible for us to do something to exploit these vast natural resources of which we have heard so much on the floor of the House already this Session. Take, for instance, our water powers. If we could develop those powers through a proper credit system and in a social way, it would be of very great benefit to our manufacturing interests. We are told that we must get more manufactories in this country. Very well, the only way, we have been told so far, is to try to reduce the wages of the labouring people in order that there may be cheaper production and a greater ability to compete in the foreign market. But it would be a far better way if we developed our water powers so that our manufacturers could produce so cheaply as to be able to sell their goods in all parts of the world; and the very fact of such cheap production here would attract other manufacturers to this country. That, in my view, is a much better way than that which we are pursuing at the present time.

We must recognize that the competition for trade among the nations of the world arises out of a false credit system which has no regard for the needs of the people or their producing power, but seeks to build up merely a money system, and promotes competition for world trade, which competition is really at the basis of every war, that thing the world is trying to get away from. In this connection I want to quote the words of President Wilson. In a speech at St. Louis in September, 1919, he said:

Peace? Why, my fellow citizens, is there any man here or any woman-let me say, is there any child-who does not know that the seed of war in the modern world is industrial and commercial rivalry? The war was a commercial and Industrial war. It was not a political war. The real reason that the war we have Just finished took place was that Germany was afraid her commercial rivals were going to get the better of her, and the reason why some nations went into the war against Germany was that they thought that Germany would get the commercial advantage of them. The seed of the jealousy, the seed of the deep-seated

hatred, was hot, successful commercial and industrial rivalry.

Sir Auckland Geddes, addressing the Canadian Bar Association in this city last year, said:

I believe rather that the war was a product of existing world unrest than that it is a cause, an effective cause, of the unrest which exists just now; for the war, if you cast back your memories, will appear as the climax of a period in which the relations between the nations were growing more difficult, and you will find also associated with that period of international unrest a period of unrest within the countries.

Inasmuch, then, as we have here not only the cause of unemployment, the cause of the disruption and paralysis of industry in our country, and the cause of international industrial strife leading to the-great wars which we all deplore, I should like to suggest to the Government that a representative committee be appointed, composed of members from the Manufacturers' Association, the Retail Merchants' Association, the Organized Farmers' Association, the Labour forces of this country, and similar organizations, to investigate the present credit system, how it functions, its relation to modern industrialism, and if it is a contributing factor to unemployment. I would further suggest that that committee should also make the closest possible inquiry into all the systems, particularly the Douglas system, proposed in support of a credit system that would be economical, serviceable to democracy, and in the best interests of our industrial life. I believe the Bank Act comes up for revision next session. It would be a very excellent thing for the committee I have suggested to report very fully at that time, for surely whatever is done in amending that act must be done in the light of the fullest and best knowledge, and perhaps on this subject we as individuals are not so fully informed as we ought to be. I should like to see the best experts obtainable engaged to deal with the problems incident to our credit system, so that before the Bank Act is amended we may have the fullest possible information in our possession,-information which will enable us to solve the problem itself and so meet the pressing needs of the people. The Douglas system has been endorsed by such a recognized authority as Arthur Kitson, who was challenged by a committee of business men in Great Britain to produce some solution for the industrial problem in that country. That system has also been included in the Sydney University course in economics. Therefore, it is a system that

The Address

cannot be laughed out of court until we have had some chance of disclosing any weak fundamental points in regard to it, if that be possible.

Now, Mr. Speaker, this is a new Parliament, this is a new country, and this is a new age. I have advocated that we must first of all remodel our parliamentary institutions to the extent that there may be possible a basis of co-operation for all these new political factors which are a reflection of the industrial development of our time. That, surely, is not asking too much. Such a remodelling would be a good thing not only for this Government but for all governments. It would infuse some real meaning into our debates and enable us to treat fully on its own merits every issue that may come under discussion. I have also suggested that a committee be appointed to investigate what seems to lie at the very basis of our industrial troubles, namely, the credit system.

I am sure that we may place the most generous interpretation on the promise of the Government that it is going to do its very best to give us good government during' its tenure of office. I am looking to it for a type of statesmanship which will be worthy of the new age ini which we are living, but I am bound to say that in the Speech from the Throne there is no. indication of that breadth of vision or of that courage which the people are looking for at this time. Vision to see the new path leading to a co-operative state, and courage to abandon the old path, are the two indispensable qualities of modern statesmanship. In his book, "Industry and Humanity," which I had the pleasure of reading some years ago, the Prime Minister has dealt to some extent with the problem that I have referred to, namely, the industrial problem, and in that title alone he has got the true relationship of the problem of industry, its relation to humanity. In this new government I hope there will be a decided movement towards the bringing of our industrial life into harmony with the great aim suggested in that book, and that our industry shall be run for humanity, and not for money as is the case to-day.

Might I conclude with a short quotation from the manifesto of the British Labor party, that great Magna Charta of modern times? It reads:

We must insure that what is presently to he built up is a new social order, based not on fighting but on fraternity-not on the competitive struggle for the means of bare life, but on a deliberately planned co-operation in profMr. Irvine.]

duction and distribution for the benefit of all who participate by hand or brain-not on the utmost possible inequality of riches, but on a systematic approach toward a healthy equality of material circumstances for every person born into the world-not on an enforced dominion over subject nations, subject races, subject colonies, subject classes, or a subject sex, but in industry, as well as in government on that equal freedom, that general consciousness of consent, and that widest possible participation in power both economic and political, which is characteristic of Democracy.

^ Mr. J. J. HUGHES (King's, P.E.I.) : Mr. Speaker, I wish to associate myself with the hon. member (Mr. Irvine) in extending my personal sympathy, and, so far as I may, the sympathy of this House, to the hon. leader of the Government (Mr. Mackenzie King) in the bereavement that has come to him in the death of his brother.

The debate on the Address in reply to the Speech from the Throne, particularly in a new parliament, is or ought to be a fair reflection of opinion throughout the country on the public questions of the day, and should, therefore, be helpful to the Government as regards both legislation and administration. I have given some attention to the discussion that has taken place so far, especially to the speeches which have been made by members of the group known as the Progressive party. In my judgment, the discussion has been creditable to these representatives: they seem to me to be sane, intelligent, practical men. No country has much to fear from men whose interests and investments are rooted in the soil. No country has much fear from men who own their own farms and till them. Hon. members of the Progressive party naturally look upon things from a western viewpoint, and we in the East perhaps, look upon things from an eastern viewpoint. But when we come together to discuss these matters freely and frankly, we shall, no doubt, arrive at satisfactory solutions of the problems which confront us.

Members of the Progressive party are sometimes accused of wishing to bring class legislation into operation. ' There may be something in that, but is class legislation an unknown thing in Canada? In my judgment, Sir, we have had class legislation in this country for forty years, and it has been advocated by very intelligent men. We had an exemplification some

years ago of class domination, when the great trade arrangement of 1911 was made between this country and the United States. Undoubtedly the reciprocity agreement was in the interests of the farmers, the fishermen, the lumbermen, of this country; particularly was it in the interests

The Address

of the farmers. It was a trade arrangement which both political parties had expressed themselves in favour of and which nearly every public man-and private man, too-had endorsed. It was a better trade arrangement than we ever thought we could obtain. Yet certain class interests- largely in Ontario, though in some of the other provinces as well-selfishly, I think, and unfortunately, turned down that trade arrangement. If it had not been for the action of these classes at that time, possibly we would not have a Parmer's party in Canada to-day.

We have heard a good deal of discussion with regard to that paragraph in the Speech from the Throne relating to immigration. Several of the hon. members who have taken part in this discussion seem to approve of the idea that immigration of the right kind would be a great advantage. Prominent men outside of the House have also given expression to that view, notably the president of the Canadian Pacific Railway Company. The idea seems to be that it would be a very desirable thing for Canada if we could get men from Europe or from the United States to come here, take up land and increase our farming population. That would be immigration of the right kind, it is argnied; and immigration of the wrong kind would be the incoming of mechanics, men accustomed to industrial pursuits, who would locate in our cities; and it would be the wrong kind of immigration because there is unemployment; there is not enough work for the men that we have. But is there no unemployment on the farms? Are farmers making money? Are they even making ends meet, either in the East or in the West? I think not. I know the conditions in the province from which I come; its people are almost entirely engaged in farming and fishing, and I endorse the statement that was made by an hon. gentleman on the other side a few evenings ago: that the farmers of this country are living on their capital and hoping that times will improve. Under these conditions, therefore, would it be desirable to bring into this country immigrants of the farmer class? I do not know, but it is a question that is open for consideration. If the output of our farms were increased by one-third or one-half, where would we find a market for our products? We might, perhaps, market more wheat than we are producing, but I do know that in respect of some agricultural products we cannot find a market now at any price. I speak particularly for the province from which I

come. The climate and soil of Prince Edward Island are admirably adapted to the growing of potatoes. Last year we had no market whatever for our potatoes, we could not get five cents a bushel for them; the farmers had to haul them out and dump them in the fields. This year conditions are nearly as bad. I understand that in Western Canada some of the farmers did not thresh their oats last season because the price obtainable would not pay for the threshing and hauling to the railway station. Therefore is there room under present conditions for more farmers in Canada? Would it not be better if we tried to improve the conditions so that those already on the land would remain there and not flock to the cities as they are doing at the present time? The province from which I come is losing its population steadily, year by year, and decade by decade, and what the end will be is hard to say.

I heard the hon. member for Yale (Mr. MacKelvie), who is an apple grower, state in the House a few evenings ago that he was a strong protectionist, because the protection that he and his fellow-orchard-ists got on their apples enabled them to charge the men on the plains more than they could otherwise obtain. That is good sound protectionist doctrine; but is it fair to the other fellows? We in Prince Edward Island do not want any privileges in the sale of our potatoes. Indeed, we are anxious to meet the competition of the world, and if we had the privilege of sending our potatoes into the New England states free of duty we would consider ourselves a happy people. Our soil and climate are admirably adapted to the growing of potatoes, and we think we are just as capable, granted a fair field and no favour of raising what our climate and soil are adapted to as any other people in the world. We fear no competition. Now, why did my hon. friend from Yale and his fellow-orchardists need protection? Why were they not able to grow apples in competition with the states to the south? As I understand it, the soil of British Columbia is fertile, and the climate favourable for the growing of apples. The land is much cheaper than it is in the states immediately to the south, in Washington and Oregon, for instance, and I suppose my hon. friend would not deny that the people of British Columbia are the equal in intelligence and industry of their neighbours to the south. Then, why cannot they produce apples just as cheaply? There must be something wrong with Canadians if

The Address

they cannot meet fair and reasonable competition.

There is a reference in the Speech from the Throne to the extension of markets. I shall have to be a little local in some of my remarks on that subject in order to be practical. I want to bring to the attention of the Minister of Finance (Mr. Field' ing) the fact that the markets we had a few years ago in the province of Prince Edward Island have been almost ruined under the late administration, partly through the legislation that was passed, but more particularly through the administration of the regulations enforced under ( that legislation. We had a trade in dressed meat with the islands of St. Pierre and Miquelon. We had also a trade in live cattle with these islands, and also with Newfoundland, until a regulation was put in force by one of the departments, under legislation, I suppose, preventing us from shipping outside of Canada any dressed meat of any kind unless it had been inspected by government inspectors. For a year or two after those regulations were put in force the Government had inspectors in some places, but lately that was done away with, and now we cannot get any inspection at all and the trade is being killed. It was quite customary for the people living in Newfoundland, where they do not raise agricultural products sufficient for their own use, to send their vessels to Prince Edward Island in the autumn and spring of the year, but particularly the autumn, to bring back agricultural products such as potatoes, turnips, oats and hay. They would also take back a few carcasses of dressed pork, a few of dressed beef, and perhaps a few of mutton. That was a trade that we carried on for years to the mutual advantage of both peoples. Nobody was injured by it; nobody was poisoned when we had no inspection. But when these regulations were put in force we could not carry on that trade. These vessels would come to the outlying ports and when there was no inspection the animals could be killed on the day the vessel sailed, or the day before, and with a fair wind the vessels would be back in their home ports in two or three days and the meat would arrive in good condition. But when the regulations were put in force the animals had to be inspected at Charlottetown, which was distant some fifty or sixty or seventy miles in some cases. That meant that the animals had to be killed several days before the vessel

was ready to sail. There was also the additional expense of the freight to Charlottetown and back and the cost of inspection. You did not know what day the vessel was going to sail, as they would wait for a fair wind, and that increased the difficulties of carrying on this trade to such an extent that we are not carrying it on now.

.Another business that we had which was very profitable to us was the canning of poultry. We have canning establishments on the island, and we raised large quantities of poultry and eggs, and disposed of a large quantity every year. Formerly, we could can the poultry and ship it to the United States, Newfoundland and other countries, but that trade has been stopped because everything has now to be inspected. We have now to send our poultry to the United States, to Boston, in carload lots, pay the duty, and get what we can for it, and they are carrying on there the canning business that we should be doing. We are a bureaucrat-ridden people. There are apparently men in the offices in Ottawa who think they know more about trade conditions than the men who are actually engaged in- the business, and they put all kinds of foolish regulations into effect without considering the local conditions. I suppose that something may be said for these regulations in large centres such as Montreal, Toronto, and Hamilton, where inspection of the larger slaughter houses can be easily carried on, but the trouble is that the men in the departments at Ottawa do not appear to take local conditions into account at all, and apply the regulations in a cast-iron way. I bring these things to the attention of the Government in the hope that better regulations will be devised.

These are the things that make life on the [DOT] farm hard. There are other grievances. The manner in which the Income Tax Act is at present administered, as respects the farmers in some of the provinces, is almost intolerable. It is foolish; I think it is worse in our province than in any other part of Canada. Circular letters are sent out to the farmers from the Taxation office asking them to make a return respecting everything that is raised on the farm; they have to make a report on the quantity of butter, eggs, milk, cheese-everything they consume in their own families. Now farmers do not weigh their products or keep such accounts as will enable them to furnish the desired information. . With our retail merchants trade is largely a mat-

The Address

ter of barter; and yet each merchant is required to keep an account of the name of every farmer, or every person, from whom he buys agricultural products, such as butter, cheese, eg'gs, pork, hay, oats, potatoes;1 and he must also furnish the post office address of the seller, state whether married or single, and give the price paid- details such as no ordinary retail merchant keeps. Yet he is threatened with all kinds of pains and penalties if he does not comply with the regulations and send in a report containing the desired information. What is the result? The country merchants, through a dread of being fined, make out bogus reports-they cannot do otherwise. It is alleged that these reports are desired for the purpose of checking up the transactions of the farmers, to see if they are making proper returns and whether or not they are liable for income tax. Some merchants havte refused to make such reports and in consequence have been threatened with dire penalties. A number of farmers have also refused to do as requested; the reports demanded are so complex in character that it would really require a fairly proficient accountant to draw them up in such a way as to satisfy the taxation officer. I am convinced, Sir, that fifty per cent, of the additional taxes raised in this way would not be sufficient to pay the salaries of the men and women engaged in this inquisitorial work. It is, in my opinion, the most expensive method of raising revenue that could be devised.

Seeing that I have condemned the present method, it is only fair that I should be asked to suggest a better plan than now exists. I will do so willingly; I suggest to the Finance Minister that he increase the Sales Tax.

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Some Hon. MEMBERS:

No.

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LIB

James Joseph Hughes

Liberal

Mr. HUGHES:

I say, yes. The people of Canada have to raise a large revenue, and there is no question but that the simplest and most inexpensive way of doing so is through the medium of the Sales Tax. Considerable revenue is now derived from that form of taxation and it could be doubled without adding one dollar to the cost of collection. It is an easy matter for wholesale men to keep account of their turnover; they are doing it now and making returns to the Government of their sales, on which the tax is levied. It is a very easy matter to extend that system, because there would not be any book-keeping difficulties or any additional expense to the

15i

country involved. In any event, such a plan would be infinitely better than the present inquisitorial method of trying to get the farmers to make a return as to everything they produce and consume.

The other day an hon. member referred to the question of daylight saving, and I notice that there is a query on the order paper with respect to it. It seems to me that a daylight saving law is a very unwise thing. There is nothing to prevent persons in ar.y part of the country from retiring and getting up an hour earlier, but why change the hands of the clock, why pretend that it is seven 5 p.m. o'clock in the morning when we know it is only six, or that it is six o'clock in the evening when we know it is only five? Such a procedure seems quite childish. In the country districts the day's work is not much more than half done at five o'clock; there is still a great deal of labour to be performed after that hour. Young men and young women in the country read or hear about the hours followed in the cities; they hear of men going fishing or shooting, going away to enjoy themselves in some way early in the afternoon when the sun is still high in the heavens, while they have to work hard. It makes them very much dissatisfied with their lot in life. They make up their minds to leave the farms, just as soon as they can get away from them. It is not a big question, but it is one of the things that make the young men and women in this country dissatisfied with farm life. It seems to be a foolish thing. In the province from which I come, conditions are such that I believe 25 per cent of the male population wish to leave the farms and to go to work for the Government, particularly to get into the railway service where eight hours constitute a day's work, and where, if you work for five or ten minutes after that, you get paid for an hour and a half, the wages being at the rate of time and a half for overtime. Young stationmasters along the line of railways in the country places leave their offices at three or four o'clock in the afternoon; their day's work is done, and they go away in their automobiles for a ride through the country. Every farm boy sees them, and he decides that, at some time or another, he is going to be a station master; he is going to get into the railway service; he is going to get time and a half when he works for a few minutes after hours. Those are the conditions that are making life on the farm difficult and dis-

The Address

tasteful at the present time, and until the occupation of farming is as profitable and conditions are just as agreeable on the farm as they are in other occupations, young men and women will leave the farms and flock to the cities, and immigration will not cure the evil.

I have listened to some speeches which have been delivered by hon. members representing Labour in this House, and anybody who has given any consideration at all to the subject, will admit that unions and brotherhoods have done a good deal for the manual labourers of this country and, indeed, of all countries. But is there not a possibility of carrying these things too far? Is there not a danger to democracy when men largely cease to think and act as individuals and think, act and vote in groups? I am afraid there is, and I am afraid we are travelling pretty far along that road at the present .time. Unless men take into consideration all. classes in the community, farmers, fishermen, miners, lumbermen, men engaged in the industries, and are willing to give to all hands fair-play, a fair deal and a square deal, democratic government is in some danger. I would commend these ideas to labour and railway unions and brotherhoods, in Canada.

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LIB

William F. Carroll

Liberal

Mr. CARROLL:

Does the hon. member think the ordinary labour man, who is identified with a union, has lost his identity any more than a man who has $800 worth of stock in the Canadian Pacific or any other great commercial organization in this country?

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LIB

James Joseph Hughes

Liberal

Mr. HUGHES:

I am not just prepared to answer that question. We are all selfish; unfortunately, man is a selfish animal; but, in my judgment, so long as we can think and act largely as individuals, in the moral order we are responsible and accountable for our individual actions- the same would apply largely to the political order, and in getting away from that, or, at least, far away from it, we are travelling a dangerous road.

A good deal has been said about the railway question, and I am going to say a very little upon the subject because we have not much information regarding it, and are promised more before the session closes. Both of the old historical political parties in this country, that is, the Conservatives and the Liberals, are blaming each other for there being too many railways in Canada. In my opinion, both parties are to blame. In this northern hemisphere, we

have very serious geographical disadvantages. Somebody has said that Canada is nine provinces long and one province wide, and that description fits very well. In our railway building we have tried and, perhaps, honestly tried to overcome those geographical disadvantages; we have tried to trade east and west, and, perhaps, in trying to give depth to our country by building railways, we were doing what we believed to be a patriotic duty. We may have overdone it; but if we were trying to do a good thing; we are not so much to blame. We have to meet the situation as we find it. Anybody who gives the matter intelligent consideration, knows that our natural lines of trade are north and south; everybody who wants to see that, can see it just as well as Goldwin Smith saw it. But many of us have not the courage to say it, because we fear we shall be misrepresented if we do. If we cannot establish lines of trade north and south; we are tremendously handicapped in Canada just for that reason, and the effort made to build a railway to Hudson bay and to establish a line of trade through that sea with Europe is, in my judgment, impossible, but, nevertheless, it was a patriotic effort to give depth to our country. I do not think it can be made a paying commercial proposition, and whether or not we shall ever be able to overcome these natural disadvantages is a question.

In the province of Prince Edward Island, from which I come, we cannot trade except with the Maritime provinces. Confederation has been an injury to us. We cannot send our products to the cities of Montreal, Toronto, Hamilton, Ottawa and other places, because the farmers immediately surrounding those cities are able to supply their needs. We have to sell our products wherever we can find a market, in Europe or in the United States, and the tariff compels us to buy, at an enhanced price, in the manufacturing centres of the country, the things we need. Protection and Confederation may have been and, per-perbaps are, good things for Ontario and parts of Quebec, perhaps all of Quebec, and other portions of the Dominion. We have to make the best of it, I suppose. But that is the condition of affairs, and when we hear our friends from the middle of the country complaining that we in the East and the people in the West are in favour of trade arrangements with the United States and are opposed to the principle of high protection, or of protection at all, I think

The Address

they would view things just as we view them if they were in our place.

Now, I want to say a word to my hon. friends from the West in regard to public lands and resources. This was discussed by some hon. gentlemen in this debate; and I heard one hon, member, I think my hon. friend from Marquette (Mr. Crerar), make the statement that when Nova Scotia and New Brunswick entered Confederation they insisted on retaining possession of their natural resources and their public lands. Ontario and Quebec, of course, did the same, but they did not get a subsidy in lieu thereof. They did not get a cash subsidy as well; they were satisfied with the possession of their natural resources. Now if I understand rightly, when the provinces of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta-[DOT] particularly these two provinces-were, formed, they were given their choice whether they would have their lands or a cash subsidy instead.

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Some hon. MEMBERS:

No.

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LIB
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

No.

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LIB

James Joseph Hughes

Liberal

Mr. HUGHES:

Well, they took the cash subsidy, anyhow. I am informed that they preferred the cash subsidy; but now, if my information is correct, they want both natural resources and cash subsidy. I put it to the hon. gentlemen themselves, would that be fair to the other provinces? I would refer to Prince Edward Island particularly, because that province has an especial claim. When Prince Edward Island entered Confederation we had no lands. We never had any lands, because they were given away by the King to some favourites in England many long years ago, which gave rise to a great agitation against the absentee landlords, who were finally bought out. We were given a cash subsidy in lieu of public lands, because we were in an inferior position as compared with the other provinces of Confederation at that time. We were allowed a lump sum of $45,000, or about 50 cents per head of population. Manitoba came in a year after, I think, and in lieu of public lands was given the exact amount we were receiving, namely $45,000. Since then Manitoba's revenue has been increased two or three times, and the subsidy in lieu of lands has advanced proportionately. Our subsidy for the same purpose, on the other hand has never 'been touched. When Saskatchewan and Alberta come in

some years later they were given a large subsidy in lieu of public lands, I believe about $1.50 per head of population, besides other payments as well for the erection of public buildings and for other purposes. Prince Edward Island, however, was left in the position she had held in this regard since Confederation. I may mention that the arrangement with Saskatchewan and Alberta was that the subsidy would increase as the population of the provinces increased); but our subsidy was fixed, so that we never had .an increase. Have we not therefore a particular claim? I think so. I think it has only to be mentioned to be admitted1 by every member of the House and by every dibizen in Canada. Manitoba's subsidy was afterwards increased to bring .it to the level of that received by Saskatchewan and Alberta. But we stand where we have always been. We have an especial claim, I say, and I want to put it to the fairminded men from the West whether that claim does not deserve every consideration. I have only to state the case, I believe, and its fairness will be conceded. We want to be beard when these adjustments are made, whether in this House or in some other place.

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PRO

Milton Neil Campbell

Progressive

Mr. CAMPBELL:

Did not the Dominion Government assume a large indebtedness in connection with the Prince Edward Island railway? *

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LIB

James Joseph Hughes

Liberal

Mr. HUGHES:

I am glad indeed that my hon. friend has asked that question, because I was forgetting it. When we entered Confederation we were charged with every cent that the railway cost. We built our own railway. It has since been added to by the Dominion Government, but at the time we entered Confederation we had a large mileage that was charged to us in the debt against the province. I am very glad that the hon. member has asked this question. Now, with regard to the western provinces, I understand that they, and particularly British Columbia, became liable for immense sums of money to the Canadian Northern Railway for lines of railway through those provinces- liabilities that were enough to put those provinces into financial difficulties. The federal government relieved them of all that burden, took over all the railway indebtedness and relieved them of all bonds, guarantees and provincial obligations in that regard, and it is a part of the public debt of Canada upon which the people, including those of Prince Edward Island,

The Address

are paying interest. That fact, I think, strengthens tenfold the case of the Maritime provinces, and particularly of Prince Edward Island.

My remarks, I fear, have been somewhat disconnected, but I trust I have put before the House views that may be helpful in solving the question with which the Government has to deal. The questions that I have dealt with, at any rate, are live questions in the province from which I come, and I think I have stated the case from the point of view of that province fairly and reasonably. The views I have expressed appear to me, at all events, to be reasonable, and I hope that the Government may find them helpful in the administration especially of the taxation of the country, from which we hope to get some relief. I may say that I have discussed this matter with the taxation oifice here and they have promised some modification; but I should like to see the whole thing wiped out and the farmers relieved from the inquisitorial investigations that are going on, because they are doing no good so far as our province is concerned. Unfortunately, we are not sufficiently wealthy individually to be able to contribute anything worth speaking of to the revenues of the country by that method of taxation.

In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I beg to thank you and the hon. gentlemen of this House for the attention that has been so graciously accorded me.

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. H. H. STEVENS (Vancouver Centre) :

Mr. Speaker, as the first person on this side of the House to speak to-day since the House has been made aware of the sad bereavement which has come to the family of the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King), may I take this opportunity, through you, Sir, of expressing to him and his family our sincere sympathy? It is on occasions of this kind, when the angel of death lays its hand upon members of our families, that we find we are indeed all akin, and whatever other matters may be in our minds they are immediately dismissed and we feel nothing but personal sympathy and sorrow for the grief stricken ones. I speak with the utmost sincerity, and I know I voice the sentiments of those around me, in extending to the Prime Minister our profound sympathy.

This institution, known as the debate on the Address in reply to the Speech from the Throne, is cherished I think by all who are students of and acquainted with our parliamentary procedure. You, Sir, with

C!ffr. Hughes.]

your lengthy and intimate acquaintance with this procedure and your profound knowledge of the history of the development of Parliament, will, I am sure, agree with me when I say that this institution should be carefully guarded so that when occasion arises we will have available for the representatives of the people the freest opportunity for the expression of their opinions. Criticism is sometimes directed *-and I have noticed some in the press during the last few days-at what is sometimes termed the needless waste of time in this debate. Occasionally, I am ready to admit, it seems somewhat difficult to understand why individuals will occupy so much time with utterances that apparently contribute very little to our advancement, but I think it will be generally conceded that this debate in the main not only measures up well with former debates, but in my estimation it surpasses any that I have listened to in the past thirteen sessions. So while I admit there is occasionally perhaps a little recklessness in the use of the time of Parliament, on the whole I think we and the country receive benefit from the preservation of this institution. A very frank and vigorous expression of opinion by hon. members on problems of which they have more or less intimate knowledge must inevitably result in some good to the country, and I am convinced, Sir, that that is practically the best and the only way by which we are going to approach a solution of many of the difficult problems which now confront us. I am equally convinced that intolerance, prejudice and parochialism in the discussion of subjects, whether religious, racial or economic, will enable us to arrive at no useful decision. So, Sir, I am particularly jealous, and I know that you and others in this House share the same view, that the general tone of our parliamentary debates shall be maintained in that spirit of tolerance and good fellowship which exists between members on both sides, for while having differences of opinion we can at least accord to one another the credit of being sincere and honest in the expression of those opinions.

In the Speech from the Throne there are several subjects for discussion, and many of them have already been discussed with more or less freedom during the course of this debate. I desire to touch upon a few of those subjects, and I shall endeavour to keep my remarks within a reasonably brief space of time. Some have claimed,

The Address

more particularly representatives of the Progressive party, that agriculture is the outstanding basic industry of Canada. I would say to them with the utmost frankness that I agree with that statement. I would, however, take this opportunity of adding that while admitting that statement with frankness, cheerfulness and pride,

I should like them to bear in mind that there are other forms of industry which, while perhaps not of the same magnitude, or not bearing exactly the same relation to the life of the country as a whole, yet do hold a very important place in our economic life. Those other industries cannot be recklessly o-r lightly dealt with any more than we can deal with the industry of agriculture in a reckless or careless spirit. As individuals and collectively we must constantly keep that fact in mind, otherwise we are in danger of taking a narrow or prejudiced view of this very important subject. Before, however, addressing myself to a brief discussion of our agricultural situation, I wish to direct the attention of the Minister of Finance (Mr. Fielding) particularly to this point: A number of years ago the late Parliament under the guidance of the then government, brought in a measure granting $10,000,000 to the aid of agriculture. This money was distributed amongst the provinces and spent by them for the development of agriculture particularly along educational lines. It was divided between them. That measure will expire, I believe, this year, and I regret that in the Speech from the Throne there is no reference to its continuance. I should very much like to have seen expressed the intention of the Government to continue this co-operative effort on the part of the federal authorities with the provincial, because in that way the late Government saved a great deal of duplication that undoubtedly will occur again unless the same .or a similar principle is applied. Therefore I submit this suggestion to my hon. friend the Minister of Finance for his consideration, and I trust to hear during the course of the session a declaration from the Government favouring it.

Let me turn for a moment to this question of agriculture which must command the attention of Parliament. It seems to me that you take a very distinct step towards the solution of a problem if you admit the problem. The difficulty very often is that we do not admit the problem; we debate whether or not the problem exists. But let us come to the point where

we admit the problem exists, and we have taken the first and most important step towards its solution. I admit that others not directly identified with the agricultural industry-I should like to say to my hon. friend that I have all my life been directly connected with it and take a very deep interest in my farm, although it might be considered small compared with some of the immense prairie farms-but as I say, some not directly connected with agriculture may decline to admit that the problem is as acute as is represented. I do admit frankly that it is acute, and from that position I start with my consideration of the problem.

One of the great difficulties to-day is that there has been a reduction of the prices of nearly all farm products to their pre-war basis, while on the other hand the prices of some, though not all, of the commodities which enter into their cost of production have not been reduced in proportion. That is, briefly stated, one of the economic problems with which my hon. friends immediately to my left are faced.

In this connection another question is raised: that of marketing and transportation. Now, I am not going to enter upon a discursive discussion of the various methods of marketing through co-operative organizations, and so on; we will leave that to these organizations to work out. But, Sir, in regard to one or two of the main products of the farm the question of marketing is important and has, indeed, in years gone by engaged the attention of this House. I refer particularly to wheat and cattle. So far as cattle are concerned I shall not go into the matter at length. We have a statement by one hon. gentleman- and here, Sir, I pause to compliment many of the new-comers in the House upon the clear and lucid manner in which they have presented their claims and their arguments -one hon. gentleman stated that it was necessary, when shipping cattle from distant points in Alberta to Winnipeg, to prepay the freight because it was doubtful whether they would bring at the end of the journey sufficient to pay the freight. I believe that is a statement of fact; it cannot but impress us with the seriousness- of the problem.

But let me turn for a moment to the question of the marketing of wheat, which, after all, is the biggest item in connection with our farm products. Here an important problem presents itself. Simply stated, it is this: That between the amount received by the grower at the point of production or shipment, and the amount paid

The Address

in the ultimate market, there is an undue and unreasonable spread. I am not for the moment going to specify what that spread is, but those interested are convinced-and I agree with them-that the spread is too great. The duty of Parliament is to consider whether this matter is one of sufficient importance to engage its attention, and if it is, to give to that problem due consideration. Permit me briefly to make several suggestions; having done that, I shall come to one of the main points to be considered.

There is, Sir, the question of freight rates; that I shall discuss later in a separate argument. There is the question of leakage in the transmission of the grain from the point of shipment to, we will say, the head of the Lakes. There is shrinkage; there are dockages. I believe there are very unfair dockages; those who were in the last Parliament know my views on that point. I still contend that the shrinkage from the point of shipment to the head of the Lakes is unreasonably great. That, in. deed, should engage the attention of the House and particularly, Sir, of the Government.

Now, some suggestions have been made in regard to the marketing of the wheat crop of our prairies. My hon. friends to my left, so far as I have been able to learn from their speeches and from conversation with some of them, stand frankly and freely for a renewal of the old Wheat Board. They say they have studied the problem, and that is their view. One or t^o with whom I have had conversation-and I believe they voice the opinion of others- tell me they are asking for the Wheat Board not as a permanent institution, but as a temporary measure because of the peculiar crisis with which they are now faced. The policy of those who sit immediately around me and who supported the late Government is also very clear: we felt, as announced by the right hon. leader of the Opposition (Mr. Meighen) before the last election, that a voluntary pool under the control and direction of the Government would be the best method. Be that as it may, Sir, the point I am coming to is this: it is an imminent question; it is a vital question; we are convinced, those of us sitting here, of the soundness of the contention of our hon. friends of the Progressive party that this question must receive immediate consideration. We think that if some decision is not arrived at within the next month,- that will appear to some hon. gentlemen as a large order, but no one knows better than

[Mr. Slevenp. 1

the hon. Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Motherwell) that what I am saying is true -unless there is a decision within a month, the agricultural interests of the prairies may be very seriously affected.

Let us for a moment examine this aspect of the question. I admit frankly that at first I thought the attitude of the western farmers was in the nature of a threat or boycott, but after looking into the matter carefully I was convinced that there were sound economic reasons why farmers situated a considerable distance from, we will say, the Winnipeg market-perhaps at points remote from transportation facilities-should hesitate to put in as large a seeding of wheat as they might do if they had some assurance of assistance in marketing. I see their point; the matter is a very serious one to them. My hon. friend the Minister of Agriculture was elected to this House and to the portfolio of Agriculture on the distinct pledge, most seriously given to his people, not only in Regina but in practically every riding throughout his district, because he is a representative man and has been for years -he was elected on the definite pledge that the Wheat Board would be brought in so far as his influence and power could bring that about. My hon. friend nods his head to indicate acquiescence in my statement. I do not want to embarrass him, but I put this very plainly to him and to the Government: Speaking for those with whom I am more directly connected, and with the consent of my leader, I say that we are prepared to-morrow to go before the suggested committee of this House and present our views on the subject. We are prepared to go before that committee and listen to and consult with my hon. friends to my left, who have another view to present; and we are prepared to go with a great deal of curiosity and anxiety to hear my hon. friend the Minister of Agriculture speak for the Government on that committee. But there should not be one hour's delay. Indeed, Sir, I am prepared and others are prepared to adjourn this debate if necessary so that this committee may be appointed and the work begun. This I am certain of, that not one hour's delay should be incurred. There should be no trifling with this question; it should be discussed and, if possible, a decision arrived at during the next few weeks.

I am not enlarging unduly on the importance of the matter. My hon. friend the Minister of Marine and Fisheries (Mr. La-

The Address

pointe) seems to take a great deal of amusement out of it.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe (Minister of Marine and Fisheries)

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

I was laughing at something else.

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

My hon. friend may not be aware of the importance of this question. His friend the Minister of Agriculture should, I suggest, take him to one side and-

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe (Minister of Marine and Fisheries)

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

Something else was amusing me; I beg my hon. friend's pardon.

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CON

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS:

I suggest, anyway, that the Minister of Agriculture take him to one side and give him a thorough education on this question.

I say, Sir, that I am not unduly exaggerating the importance of the matter. I repeat with all earnestness that the Government should hasten to appoint the committee that they have in mind so that an early decision may be arrived at as to the method which will be followed.

Let me just supplement these observations with a suggestion as to the facilities we are possessed of as a country. My hon. friends to my left are aware of this without my repeating it, but I will tell the House for the benefit of those who may have overlooked the fact-that the Government of Canada is in control or directly possessed of elevators as follows: At the head of, the Lakes we have a Government elevator with a capacity of 3,500,000 bushels; the Grand Trunk Pacific elevator, 7,500,000 bushels; the Canadian Northern elevator, 9,000,000 bushels; or terminal elevators at the head of the Lakes with an aggregate capacity of 20,000,000 bushels. Then we' have an elevator at Moosejaw with a capacity of 3,500,000 bushels; Calgary, 2,000,000 bushels; Saskatoon, 3,500,000 bushels; Vancouver, 1,250,000 bushels; Montreal, 5,000,000 bushels; Port Colborne, 4,000,000 bushels. This constitutes a magnificent system of elevator facilities surpassing, I think, that of any other institution handling grain in this country, and one which is well fitted to take up immediately the question of the handling of grain. We believe-and I am going to state it here again briefly-that a voluntary pool coupled up with this system of elevators is the best way in which this question can be' dealt with at this time. However, we make this reservation, that we shall be delighted to consult with other hon. gentlemen as to the advisability of inaugurating once again perhaps the Wheat

Board which hon. gentlemen to my left have so persistently advocated.

Let me turn now to a very brief consideration of the question of transportation rates. This again is a vital question, not only to my friends on my left in regard to the marketing of their wheat, and in that regard it is vital, but it is vital also, I believe, to every branch of industry in Canada. I have had the privilege during the last few weeks of consulting with a very wide range of public opinion in Canada, and* to my surprise many who have given little attention to the question of freight rates in months gone by, are to-day agreeing with those of us in the West who have been insisting for a considerable time that freight rates must come down. Let me state the problem in a very brief and simple manner. We are hauling to-day trains of about 350 tons with a motive power capable of hauling 900 tons or thereabouts. Is it not, Sir, a simple question in economics that if you haul a full train of 900 tons your cost of transportation per ton-mile will be reduced by the difference in the ratio of the amount you are now hauling and 900 tons? That is the problem. The railways say the rates are as low as they can make them. Now I do not wish to interfere with the authority and the jurisdiction of the Railway Board. I and those in this particular section of the House believe that we should always proceed by constitutional methods. I do not agree, for instance, with the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Motherwell) who on the occasion of a complimentary banquet given to him in Regina, I believe, gave utterance to the declaration, somewhat belligerent, I must say, that he was going to have the chairman of the Railway Board fired. My hon. friend is in the Government and it would be very interesting to know just what interchange of opinion there was between him and the Minister of Justice (Sir Lomer Gouin) on the process of firing the chairman of the Railway Board. To talk about firing the chairman of the Railway Board is an utterance wholly unworthy of an hon. member occupying a ministerial position. You know that yourself, Mr. Speaker; it needs no enlargement on my part. There is a way to proceed, and my hon. friend, if he is convinced that the chairman of the Railway Board is utterly derelict in his duty as chairman, might impeach him in the House, but I doubt if any such thought entered his mind within fifteen minutes after he had made that declaration for the purpose of getting con-

The Address

siderable applause from those who heard him. There is a constitutional way of proceeding.

The Government, I notice, has referred back to the Railway Commission the appeal that was made to them regarding dairy products and express rates. I agree that that was a wise course to pursue, hut it occurs to me, Mr. Speaker, that while we should not interfere with a court of equity or a court of law, while we should not seek to influence unduly one way or the other a judge on the Beifch- and that is virtually what the Railway Commision amounts to when they are trying a case-yet as representatives of the people in this Parliament I think we might very properly consider the question of freight rates, or transportation, when that question is so acute that it affects the economic and industrial life of the country seriously. Undoubtedly it is affecting the economic and industrial life of this country very seriously at this time, and so, without interfering with the jurisdiction and the duties of the chairman of the Railway Board, or suggesting, as the Minister of Agriculture has done, that he should be fired, I think that after due consideration by this House it will be quite competent for us to make suggestions to the board.

For instance, we could suggest that the Railway Board should consider the advisability of reducing the commodity rates. I am not much concerned what the rates are on a bolt of silk valued at about one dollar per ounce, or about the rates on drugs which may be worth one, two or three dollars an ounce, because these things do not enter very much into the economic life of the country, but I am deeply concerned about the tonnage rate on coal, on cement, lumber, grain, coarse grains and wheat, and such things as that. These are commodities that touch the life of every person in the community. These are the commodities which, if the rate is right, the production and the movement of them may be encouraged and developed, whereas, on the other hand, if the rate is increased beyond a certain point, it will stop their production. An instance was cited by my hon. friend from Comox-Alberni (Mr. Neill) where when the freight rate was raised last year on lumber, a mill had to shut down because they could not market their lumber on account of the rate. That I know to be true; I know case after case where this was so. We find that when we ship lumber to prairie points like Regina, Saskatoon, Moosejaw,

the freight rate is far greater than the total cost of the lumber at point of shipment. This simply illustrates the danger of a policy being adopted, by the Railway Board, if you will, whereby the economic life of the country may be stifled, where it is so interfered with that it does not move with that freedom which is necessary for prosperity, and so I suggest this in connection with the freight rate problem: While not desiring to interfere

in any unconstitutional manner with the duties of the Railway Board, I think Parliament might very well deliberate on this problem and give its expressions, through Council or otherwise, to the Board of Railway Commissioners. Then if it is found that that process results in no satisfactory results, we may, and it is within our power to do so, carefully scrutinize the Railway Act of Canada, one of the most important statutes we have. It is possible, Sir, that we would find some way by amendment to the Railway Act of dealing with this question; but the point I am coming at, what I have been dealing with all through my argument regarding freight rates, is, that it is clear to the lay mind of Canada that the freight rates at this time are too high on ordinary commodities.

At six o'clock the House took recess.

After Recess

The House resumed at eight o'clock.

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

Henry Herbert Stevens

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEVENS (resuming) :

Mr. Speaker, when the House rose at six o'clock, I had virtually completed the few remarks that I desired to make in connection with the question of transportation. I do not see the Minister of Railways (Mr. Kennedy) in his seat; but I am reminded that the Prime Minister, in his address in this debate, referring to a query as to the intention of the Government and dealing with this problem in a broader way than I have been discussing it, stated that the House would be called upon to wait until the Minister of Railways made a statement. We shall await, with a great deal of interest, and, I might say, anxiety, for this statement of the Minister of Railways. Aside from the bearing that transportation has, at the present time, upon other problems to which I have already referred, the transportation question or the question of the national railways is, in itself, of very grave importance. We did, however, get a glimpse, I think, into the mind of the Government by the speech of

The Address

the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald). I noted an utterance of his which seemed, to me at least, to conform with the general tendency on the part of the ministry in dealing with this question, where he referred in his argument to the impossibility of incorporating the Grand Trunk in the national railway system. Whether we are justified, in the absence of any statement on the part of the Government, in assuming that they have arrived at the conclusion that it is impossible to co-ordinate the Grand Trunk system with the rest of the national railway system or not, let me say to the Government that we on this side of the House await with interest a definite statement from them on the subject. Before leaving this subject, as I shall do in a moment to pass on to another, I think I would not be fair to my constituents if I did not 'point out to the House that, in the consideration of this question of railway rates, we, perhaps, suffer more than any other part of the country; that is, we are paying about double the rates of any other part of Canada, on both the Canadian Pacific and the national railway systems. This, in turn, has had a very serious and detrimental effect upon the transportation of grain from the prairies to the Pacific seaboard. Let me add to that this fact that, in spite of the repeated declarations of officials of the Canadian Pacific railway that wheat would never move west, we have handled, through the port of Vancouver this present winter, somewhere in the neighbourhood of ten million bushels of wheat from the Prairie provinces with, I think, distinct benefit to them. Therefore, the present situation being that we are paying approximately double the freight rate that is being paid in other parts of the country, if that is reduced to the rates obtaining in other sections, this trade will, I believe, be stimulated; and the great oriental field which, to-day, is consuming a very large quantity of this grain, will be open to the products of my hon. friends from the prairies. I shall leave that question. We shall have an opportunity to discuss it at length when the problem is presented to us, as we have been promised it will be, by the Minister of Railways.

In the consideration of the difficulties attending the development of agriculture and other problems, I should like to bring to the attention of this House and of the Government a policy which was, shall 1 say, partially, at least, adopted by the

previous government, and which was under consideration by this House at the last session. Indeed, if I remember correctly, the House passed a measure giving effect to what I am about to refer to, namely the establishment of a bureau of standards and the promotion of industrial scientific research. No reference has been made to this in the Speech from the Throne; no information has been given to us by the Government. If the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Robb) purposes contributing to this debate, it would be very interesting if he would give us some intimation of the policy of the Government along this line. What I desire to say, however, in connection with the matter is this. My hon. friends to my left and some other hon. gentlemen persist in pointing out that Canadian industrial establishments should be able successfully to compete with industrial establishments of other nations of the world. Usually the reference is made to those of the United States and Europe. I should like to point out to them and to the House generally that, in the United States, Germany, Great Britain, and, indeed, other countries, industrial scientific research has been carried to such a degree of perfection that it contributes very materially to the success of the great industrial concerns of those countries in competition with other countries in their particular industries. So, I say to the House that, if we hope so to develop the industries of Canada that we can successfully compete outside of Canada, we must certainly take into consideration this question of establishing a bureau of standards and the promotion of industrial scientific research. I might give a homely illustration of the nature of our competition. For instance, we might say that there is before a given group of individuals the task of removing a very large obstacle on a railway or in any other place. In one place you set to work a man with a pick and shovel. In another you set to work a man or a group of men with a steam shovel. They may both succeed in removing the obstruction, but the group with the steam shovel and up-to-date appliances will certainly remove it with greater facility and more cheaply than the man who is using the primitive instrument. So it is in a more complicated manner in the industrial world. If a woollen industty, steel industry, chemical industry or any other branch of industry has the advantage and co-operation of a highly organized and efficient bureau of

The Address

standards, and of an industrial scientific research bureau, it certainly will be better equipped to meet the competition of the world than the industry which has not those advantages.

I desire to give a little attention to another subject which was referred to in the Speech from the Throne, and which is of very great interest at this time. I refer to the question of immigration. I ask the House to note the wording of the Speech from the Throne which gives to us some idea of the mind of the Government. In the Speech from the Throne, immigration is referred to in these words:

A renewal of efforts for bringing new settlers must be made.

From that I take it that the Government is embarking upon some definite action towards bringing in new settlers, if the words mean anything at all. Then they say they will use every reasonable endeavour to attract to the country people of the most desirable class, with particular regard to the settlement of our undeveloped lands. My mind goes back some fifteen or twenty years to a time when a similar effort was made to bring settlers into Canada. By the effort that was made at that time settlers were brought from Central and Eastern Europe, and they settled, or rather hived in colonies, particularly in the western parts of the Dominion. I learn from the press of the past few days that there is a trek of some of these people to Mexico. They are going away from Canada. In other words, the efforts on the part of the government between 1900 and 1911 in regard to the immigration of settlers for our undeveloped lands resulted, to some extent at least, in failure, and the creation, in some sections, of a menace to the community. I therefore say to the Government that if they have in contemplation a policy of bringing in settlers and hiving them in districts according to racial or religious prejudices, they will confer no favour on the country. We want settlers, but settlers who will come to Canada on their individual initiative, settlers who will go into various communities and settle upon new lands, contributing something to the upbuilding of the national life of Canada, and not creating within our bounds a little Russia cr a little Poland or a Galicia, or some other distinctive nationality. I have read some despatches, and have heard some rumours in Ottawa, to the effect that there had actually approached the Government seme gentlemen who proposed settlements similar to the old Doukhobour and other

racial groups of former days. If that is the case, I take this opportunity of warning the Government against embarking upon any such policy.

I would point out in regard to the question of immigration that the United States have restricted immigration from any nation to a certain percentage of the number of that nationality now in the country. In other words, this constitutes almost an exclusion. In their law, however, they recognize a year's residence in Canada as a qualification for admission to the United States. Now, what does that indicate? It indicates that throughout disturbed and stricken Europe and Asia, where the eyes of these people are turned towards the United States, and they find that they cannot enter directly through the portals of that country, they will endeavour to come here and reside in Canada for the year if necessary to qualify them to gain admission to the United States. We want no such movement as that. We do not want Canada to be made a mere stepping stone for immigration to the United States; nor do we desire-this is my opinion, and, I think, the opinion of a large section of the country as well-nor do we desire to have coming into Canada, as suggested in a speech made in Toronto by a gentleman the other day, large numbers of immigrants from industrial centres of Europe. The industrial centres of Canada to-day have, I think, a very satisfactory supply, indeed an over supply, of competent labour. There is no call for cheap labour from the industrial centres of Europe. The class of settler that we do want to have, as I have said, is the uncontrolled individual who will stay on land. Before leaving this question let me bring to the attention of the Government and of the House a resolution passed by the Union of Municipalities at a convention recently held. I shall read only a portion of it:

The Union regards with serious apprehension the efforts of transportation interests to encourage immigration into Canada of persons of alien birth, more particularly in view of unemployment problems, etc.

The resolution then goes on to ask that the Immigration Act be amended and that further immigration be prohibited of aliens for urban occupations. This important resolution, I think, warrants the attention and consideration of Parliament.

Let me turn to another subject, a subject that has not been mentioned in the Speech from the Throne. I refer to the Bank Act.

The Address

I understand that next year is really the time for the amendment of that act. I was of the opinion that it should have been amended this year to conform with the practice of the past, but in that perhaps I am mistaken. Whether that be the case or not, however, I think that the Banking and Commerce Committee might very prop-#vly make a careful examination this year into the workings of the Bank Act, that is to say, into some of its evident weaknesses. I am not one of those who subscribe to the statement that our banking system has not proven workable, or that it is an unsuccessful system which is not in the best interests of the people. I am not ready to endorse the remarks of the hon. member for East Calgary (Mr. Irvine) made this afternoon,-statements which seemed to me with great facility and despatch to dispose of this great problem with a complacency that one might well envy, if, indeed, the remarks of the hon. gentleman could bring about a solution of the problem. I believe that our banking system is, in the main, a sound one; it is one of the best systems in the world. Nevertheless, we have to consider the incident of the Merchants Bank during the past few months to realize that there are weaknesses, or, shall I say, loopholes in the Bank Act, and that it is necessary, if not to reconstruct, at least to amend it, so as to render impossible a recurrence of the failure of the Merchants Bank. Perhaps that word is too strong; at all events, let me say the incident of the Merchants Bank. For instance, the Merchants Bank directorate or management must have made false returns to the Department of Finance for several months before the crash came. I do not see how the returns that they did make could approach accuracy in view of the sudden collapse, or partial collapse that confronted us. If it is true, as I surmise,- and I think the evidence strongly supports the assumption-that the Bank made false returns, then this Parliament ought to know it, and I believe that the Banking and Commerce Committee should summon before it the management, the president and any other officials of the Merchants Bank who might throw light on the matter, in order that Parliament might be fully seized of all the steps which led up to this very regrettable incident in the banking life of this country. Furthermore, the Banking Committee could very well make this examination for the purpose of preparing amendments to the Bank Act, when it comes up for general revision next year.

Let me direct the attention of the House to a suggestion or two as to what might properly be done. It seems to me that under our banking system power is too much concentrated in the head office; no bank manager in our towns and cities away from the head office is allowed to make any large loans-for anything above $2,500 he has to report to head office and obtain its sanction. So there is concentrated at the head office an authority and control which is absolute. As I understand the Bank Act, there is at present no audit of the books of a bank. I do not suggest that we should have an inspection of all the bank branches, such as is carried out under the United States system, I do not know that that is necessary, but I am certainly convinced that there should be a periodical audit by officers of the Government of the head office books of our great banks; that is something which we could very properly take into consideration through the Banking and Commerce Committee during this session.

Another problem that I should like to deal with for few moments, is that of unemployment. We have already had considerable discussion of this problem. My hon. friend the Minister of Labour (Mr. Murdock) is not in his seat; if he were I would remind him of a declaration he made in Toronto, that this problem had been very seriously neglected by the previous government and would receive his immediate attention with a view to finding a solution for it. That declaration was made a few months ago. Time has elapsed, and we are now met with this statement-which, by the way, the right hon. leader of the Opposition and those who are supporting him may take with a certain degree of satisfaction-that recognizing the continuance of unemployment the Government is going to continue the policy which was laid down by its predecessors in office, which policy the Minister of Labour so roundly condemned in Toronto and other centres. Unquestionably it is a perplexing problem, and challenges the most careful study and attention of this Parliament, and indeed of one and all who are interested in the welfare of our country. It is an economic problem, and it will be neither sufficient nor satisfactory for us to attempt to dispose of it by merely saying, there is worldwide unemployment and therefore we can trust to a future adjustment of world conditions to solve it. I should like to be comforted, if I might use the term, by the

The Address

facility with which my hon. friend from East Calgary (Mr. Irvine) dealt with this problem, if I could persuade myself-as he apparently does-that the application of certain theories would bring a satisfactory solution. If this were so it would indeed be a great comfort. But I recognize, as the hon. gentleman himself must recognize, that it is an intensely practical problem. I think we might consider the chief cause of the unemployment which prevails to-day, as it has been the chief cause of past periods of unemployment which have occurred in cycles of ten or fifteen years, due to modern mass production, resulting in periodical over supply or surplus of goods.

Now, Sir, that is the real economic problem. But I realize that merely to state that problem is not sufficient; it is not offering a solution. The problem is exceedingly complex. On previous occasions in discussing this problem out of the House I have suggested, and I feel the suggestion is worthy of consideration, that a very careful study ought to be made of the underlying causes. I know that such a study does not bring immediate relief- it does not put a man to work, it does not clothe his children; but this periodical unemployment will occur again just as it has so frequently occurred in the past, and with this growing tendency on the part of industry to intensified mass production, it seems to me the path of wisdom for this Parliament to at least provide for a study of the problem, even if we cannot at the present time go further in the direction of solving it.

I want to dissociate myself absolutely from those who, because of this recurring difficulty, would disrupt the whole economic system by revolutionary means. I have no sympathy whatever with such men. I think it is the duty of every true citizen to challenge that suggestion wherever it is made, either directly or indirectly. In my estimation nothing of a permanent and worthy character has ever been contributed to civilization through the process of disruption and revolution. On the other hand, I do recognize that through the process of evolution, and by a careful study of this problem, step by step doing what we can in the light of our knowledge to-day, we can contribute to the ordered progress of civilization and the happiness and welfare of mankind.

In regard to this subject the suggestion has been repeatedly made, in fact it was

[Mr. Stevens.!

made only to-day in this House, that it is the duty of government to supply employment for its citizens. I challenge that statement. I claim, Sir, that it is not the function of government to find employment for individuals. If it is the function of government-and I am not referring to this Government, but to government as an institution-if it is the function of goverrf-ment to supply employment for individuals, then it is the duty of every individual so supplied to go and to do as he may be instructed by such government. You cannot dissociate the two positions. If you lay upon any government the function or duty of finding employment for an individual citizen, then that citizen must put himself docilely under the direction of that government, go where he is directed to go, do what he is told to do, and accept what is given to him. But that is the exact reversal of what humanity has been struggling against from the dawn of history to the present time. And I think it is due to ourselves and to the country that we give very careful study to this problem, for throughout the Dominion from one end to the other demagogues who are living by their wits, gather together a group of people on a Sunday afternoon, stir up their grievances, excite their passions, and then take up a collection upon which they live, proceeding afterwards to another centre to stir up further disorder and discontent. These demagogues, who neither work for their livelihood nor contribute to the upbuilding of the community, but, on the contrary, sow discord and dissatisfaction wherever they get the ear of the people, are going up and down the land preaching this and other doctrines equally subversive of the prosperity and contentment of our citizens, and I think it is about time that those of us who are convinced that such doctrines will not lead us out of our economic difficulties should bluntly and emphatically challenge those who advocate them. So while this is indeed an important problem, we must not allow ourselves to be stampeded into any experiments regarding government assuming full responsibility for unemployment.

I do not wish to give the impression that I am not aware of how serious a matter unemployment is to the individual, and there are occasions-we had them during the war; crises in the history of the country- when governmental action may be necessary. If it is possible for the Government or for Parliament to find some temporary

The Address

method of ameliorating the conditions of to-day, by all means let it be employed. But I warn Parliament and I warn the Government against assuming responsibility for finding employment for all who happen to be unemployed.

An exceedingly popular subject of discussion in this House, and one which touches upon the matter to which I have just been referring, is that of the tariff. It is not my intention now to dwell at length upon the tariff question; I believe the proper time to do that is when the Budget is before the House. I do wish, however, to make a few brief references to the subject.

The hon. member for King's, P.E.I. (Mr. Hughes) this afternoon censured the late Government because last season the people of his province were unable to sell their potatoes, and he sought to give the impression that the tariff was the cause of this condition. I do not see just how the tariff could have affected the sale of Prince Edward Island potatoes. As a matter of fact, the late Government by legislative and administrative acts secured the market of the United States to the potato producers of the whole of Canada, particularly of the eastern provinces. But the United States, after experiencing one season of the competition of Canadian-grown potatoes, put a duty of twenty-five cents a bushel, I think it was, on potatoes, thus shutting our product out. Indeed, Sir, the late Government adopted a reciprocal arrangement with the United States respecting wheat, but the United States now impose a duty of thirty-five cents a bushel on wheat. Is that because Canada has a tariff? Is that because those of us who supported the late Government were responsible for maintaining a certain policy in regard to the tariff? Let us be reasonable. Any tariff restrictions imposed by the United States against our potatoes are the result not of any act of the preceding Government, but of the fiscal policy of the United States.

Now, our position on this question is well known; we do not camouflage it in the least. We believe in a tariff for Canada which involves adequate and reasonable protection for Canadian industries from one end of the country to the other,-sufficient to maintain them in a healthy condition. Hon. gentlemen opposite suggest that they are in favour of a revenue tariff. What is a revenue tariff? If they are sincere in this statement, then with every impost of duty on goods

imported into this country they will impose concurrent excise taxes upon similar goods produced in Canada. I wonder why my hon. friends opposite persist in deceiving the people in regard to this tariff question. The Minister of Justice (Sir Lomer Gouin) has frequently given voice to sentiments regarding protection much stronger than anything we have ever affirmed adherence to in recent years: he is in favour of a protective tariff. The Minister of Railways (Mr. Kennedy) who is now in his seat, is in favour of a protective tariff. The Minister of Militia (Mr. Graham) and the Minister of Marine (Mr. Lapointe) and many other hon. gentlemen sitting opposite to me-not one of them will deny that he is in favour of a protective tariff for Canada. Why, I could mention a few commodities: tobacco, boots and shoes, automobiles, farm implements, wagons, cottons,

I wonder what we can expect from my hon. friend the Minister of Finance in the matter of any serious reduction of the duty on cottons. The member for Marquette (Mr. Crerar) is not in his seat, but in view of the appointment of Sir Charles Gordon to the important office of Canada's representative at the Genoa Conference, I am sure that the hon. member for Marquette will take the first opportunity afforded him publicly to retract what he said during the campaign: that the Dominion Textiles and Canada Cottons were sitting astride the neck of the leader of the Opposition. That was his cry up and down the country. Sir Charles Gordon was one of those who gave generous and loyal support to my hon. friends opposite, and he has received his reward in the appointment to the Genoa Conference. Further let me say, I wonder if we will get any serious reduction in the duty on tea and a few other things, in which some hon. members of the Cabinet may have more or less interest.

The hon. member for Kindersley (Mr. Carmichael), I think it was, made a statement which might be accepted by those who had not the data, but which I cannot allow to go unchallenged. He said that the collection of the customs tax cost fully fifty per cent of the amount received. Nothing can be gained by making statements that are wholly untrue. I do not suggest that the hon. gentleman deliberately made a statement that was untrue; that would be unparliamentary. But there is such a thing as making a statement in such a manner as to convey to the mind of the public the impression that it is based upon official figures.

The Address

Topic:   THE GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH ADDRESS IN REPLY
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?

An Hon. MEMBER:

He said he gave it on good authority.

Topic:   THE GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH ADDRESS IN REPLY
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March 20, 1922