Mr. JOHN EVANS (Saskatoon) :
(Resuming) Mr. Speaker, in dealing with the tariff we are always confronted with the question: If we have freer trade relations with other countries where is the revenue to come from? This question is always raised by those who desire a tariff high
enough to prohibit the entry of any goods on which duty may be collected. One hon. member to my right said last night that the tariff was needed to protect Canada against the influx cf American goods from the factories of New York and Massachusetts, as well as to provide revenue. I wonder how he expected to collect revenue on goods prohibited from entering this country! But that is about the kind of reasoning and logic that we have become accustomed to from those who favour a trade restriction policy. I, on my part, may well ask: Where are the earnings of our people now going? Taking my figures from trade reports in the Canadian Year Book, I find that the average production of manufactured goods for the five years from 1910 to 1914 inclusive-this was before the war and when trade conditions were normal- amounted to $1,400,000,000; the average consumption at home during that time was $1,350,000,000. On the average, there'was exported $50,000,000 worth each year. That is, twenty-seven times as much manufactured products were consumed at home as were exported. So the situation, so far as the Canadian consumer is concerned, stands thus: The tax that went into the federal treasury was on the average $92,000,000 for those five years; while the total tax due to the tariff on Canadian manufactures amounted to $497,000,000-$405,000,000 of which went into the pockets of the protected interests. The amount we are now getting in revenue from the tariff is only a small portion of our yearly requirements; this year, I believe, it will amount to only about one-fifth.
Now, some manufacturers protest that the tariff does not bring about higher prices to the consumer. Obviously, in that case, the tariff does not protect, and they will not suffer from its removal. But, take one industry alone for one year before the war, when, of course, conditions were normal. I find that, in the boot and shoe industry we paid because of the tariff over $3,065,000 in excess of the total wages and salaries received by all those employed in that industry. If we were, then, to consider the interests of the country it 'would have paid the people to scrap every boot and shoe factory, hand over to the workers their full wages, and pay a diretet subsidy to the Government of $3,065,000 instead of the paltry half million which went into the treasury from that industry in that year. Or, to be more explicit: We paid that year on boots and shoes alone, because of the
duty, $10,763,890.61; the customs, duty amounted to $585,996; the enhancement in price to the Canadian consumer was $10,177,893,90; the wages and salaries paid to all those employed in that industry in that year amounted to $7,698,333, being less by $3,065,557 than what the manufacturers received owing to the tariff. And further, the tariff, we were told, was needed to maintain higher standards of living among the workers of the land. If you divide $7,698,000 among 17,227 employees, you get an average of $446 for the year, or of $1.46 for the day. I think you' will agree with me that in a country where the price of every article of food and clothing is enhanced by the tariff, $446 a year will not permit a worker's family to live under very comfortable conditions; nor would it do so even in pre-war days. But we must not forget that this average of $1.46 per day really does not indicate the average amount received by the workingmen, because the salaries of higher-paid officials is included in that calculation.
After all, Sir, I am not sure that the tariff as it stands to-day is the greatest economic evil militating against the workers of this land. But it is the basis or foundation upon which the structure of privilege is built. The hon. member for Yale (Mr. MacKelvie) spoke of the Anti-Dumping Act as being the saviour of some Canadian industries. That act, which was passed in 1904, closed up the last gap of liberty for the consumers of this land; it put a lever in the hands of the protected manufacturers which they have used fully to their own advantage. As a specific instance, I want to point out that the United Grain Growers Company, to whom no manufacturing concern in Canada would sell for co-operative distribution, were forced to seek their supplies from independent companies in the United States. But those supplies were brought into Canada under the dumping penalties of this Act. The invoice prices of the goods were disputed, though the goods were purchased in the regular way; and on the implements which were imported the company paid from 52 to 68 per cent of the total cost by way of duty. In 1916 the price paid by this organization for a gang plough was $87, but the customs appraiser valued it at $103.79. The regular tariff rate then was 27J per cent. The ad valorem duty, including war tax, on $103.79 amounted to $28.60, and the dumping duty was $16.79, or a total of $45.39, equal to 52 per cent ad valorem on the purchase price, although
the regular tariff rate was 271 per cent. I think it is plain to us all that in many instances the Canadian consumer is forced to submit not only to the imposition of rates as shown in the tariff schedules of to-day, but to the addition of arbitrary rates as well.
Now, I have before me an article from that old champion of liberty, the Montreal Witness, setting forth an incident which occurred some time ago in the city of Montreal. The protected milling combine of Can [DOT] ada put up its prices to such an extent that the bakers had either to increase the price of bread or to seek their flour elsewhere. They took the latter course; they sought their flour in the United States, and after paying the duty on it and the heavier freight rate, were able to maintain the usual price for bread. And then what took place? They were brought under the penalties of this Anti-Dumping Act, and the consumers of that city were handed over to the tender mercies of the protected combine. As I have said, the act closed up the last gap of liberty that had been left open to the consumers of Canada.
We in the West have been trying in every possible way to lower the cost of production on our farms so that agriculture may live, but we have been met at every point. We have been thwarted in every way by the ramifications of the great O.B.U.-One Big Union-which, because of the protective tariff inaugurated in 1879, is now able to control the distribution of every commodity in the land. In fact, Sir, the threat was made some time ago that the Canadian Manufacturers' Association, which was described as a young athlete not knowing its own strength, was able at one blow to close every industry in the land, and in a short time to bring millions of workers to the verge of starvation. _
I wish now to return to the railway question in order to show, as I have already in some measure tried to do, how this system of privilege is the cause of most of the trouble in our national problems of to-day. Under the bounty legislation of 1897-99, plants for the manufacture of steel rails were installed at Sydney, Cape Breton, and Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. Both these companies were of American promotion. In 1900 an amendment to the Railway Act was made providing that equipment made in Canada had to be used, by all railways subsidized by the government. This measure was opposed at the time even by the Conservative party, particularly by Sir
Charles Tupper, whose name, I believe, is still reverenced by that party. He opposed it on the ground that it was contrary to freedom, but the measure was adopted on July 12, 1900. Although it was 1904 before either of these companies produced any rails, a contract was entered into with the Sault Ste. Marie Company just before the election of 1900 for the delivery of 25,000 tons of rails yearly to the Intercolonial Railway. Neither the government, nor the opposition made known to the public this contract, and not until the new parliament met in the following April were the contract audits terms made public. It then became known that the price of these rails was $8 a ton above the price in England and the United States. The actual figure was $32, with a bounty of $7 added, which made $39 a ton. The world's price for rails at that time was $24 per ton delivered. Yet this kind of thing was defended by the government of that day, on the ground of the national policy. Then in 1903 an act was passed giving the government power to impose by Order in Council a duty of $7 per ton on rails, and this duty came into effect on August 12 of that year. We sometimes wonder why our railways do not pay their way, but when they are capitalized according to the cost of construction in this way, it is not so much to be wondered at. When we built the government section of the National Transcontinental we paid $32 per ton to the Dominion Iron and Steel Company, with a further bounty of $7 per ton, making $39 per ton for the steel rails that we used on that section of the road, and at the same time that company was delivering rails in the southern Punjab for $24. The amount of bounties that these two companies got, particularly between the years 1904 and 1911, amounted to $17,-
Up to 1897 the Liberals, who had long been in power, persistently and vigorously opposed the old national policy in all its features. But democracy in no Englishspeaking country ever suffered a more dis
astrous setback than in 1897 when official liberalism capitulated to this new feudalism. Since that time there has been no dividing line between the Liberal and Conservative parties, and there has been no education carried on among the people of this country along the lines of democracy except by the organized farmers of Eastern and Western Canada. That there is no dividing line in principle between the two old parties has been confirmed in the House
during this debate when hon. members of both parties have declared that they still adhere to the Laurier-Fielding tariff. Today the Progressive party is the only body in this House representing true democracy in Canada as it affects the people. While there was only a small number of this party in the last Parliament we are now a unit of no mean proportions, and if the Laurier-Fielding tariff is maintained for another four years I venture to predict that we shall come back in still greater numbers. The Progressive party is not looking for any privileges. All we ask is a square deal.
Subtopic: ADDRESS IN REPLY