April 10, 1922

BANKRUPTCY ACT AMENDMENT

LIB

Andrew Ross McMaster

Liberal

Mr. A. R. McMASTER (Brome) :

On

behalf of the hon. member for George Etienne Cartier (Mr. Jacobs), I move for leave to introduce Bill No. 45, to amend the Bankruptcy Act.

Topic:   BANKRUPTCY ACT AMENDMENT
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CON
LIB

Andrew Ross McMaster

Liberal

Mr. McMASTER:

I am sorry that the only copy I have of the bill I have sent to the Speaker, and I am not familiar enough with the measure myself to be able to explain it. Perhaps the House will allow it to be introduced, and discussion may be had on the second reading.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.

Topic:   BANKRUPTCY ACT AMENDMENT
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RAILWAY ACT, 1919, AMENDMENT

LIB

Andrew Ross McMaster

Liberal

Mr. A. R. McMASTER (Brome) :

In

the absence of the hon. member for George Etienne Cartier (Mr. Jacobs), I beg to introduce Bill No. 46, to amend the Railway Act, 1919. The bill provides that a return ticket issued by any railway company between any two points in Canada shall be accepted by any other railway company whose line runs between the same termini.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.

Topic:   RAILWAY ACT, 1919, AMENDMENT
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CRIMINAL CODE AMENDMENT

LIB

Andrew Ross McMaster

Liberal

Mr. A. R. McMASTER (Brome) (Translation) :

On behalf of the hon.

member for George Etienne Cartier (Mr. Jacobs) ; I move for leave to introduce Bill No. 47, to amend the Criminal Code.

Should hon. members of the other side of the House wish for any explanations,

I am ready to give them.

Motion agreed to and bill read the first time.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE AMENDMENT
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GRAND TRUNK ARBITRATION

COMMENTS OP ENGLISH NEWSPAPER


On the Orders of the Day: SIR HENRY DRAYTON (West York): I desire to refer to a matter that has already been brought to the attention of the House by my hon. leader (Mr. Meighen). It is a question that deeply involves the fair fame and good name of Canada, and for that reason I bring it forward again. I refer to the attack made by The Outlook on Canada and Canadian institutions. When the matter was before the House on the previous occasion, the Government took a position similar to that taken by the leader of the Opposition; but I regret that, apparently, they have not been able to make very much headway in dealing with it. I notice that The Outlook, ifar from desisting or apologizing, has returned to the charge, according to The Globe of Saturday, April 8. For the first time now we have an opportunity of studying this article. The Outlook is printed in London, I think, but I do not know anything regarding its standing, and I am perfectly convinced that both the British Government and the English people would just as much resent the attack made upon Canada as this House ought to resent it. I shall! read one or two paragraphs from the article, which has been widely distributed through the press of Canada.


LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

I do not know that the hon. member is strictly in order, but as the matter to which he refers seems to cast a reflection upon the honour of this country, I think it is of sufficient importance to warrant being brought 'before the attention of the House in order to elicit from the Government some statement regarding the facts. I would ask the hon. member, however, to refrain from reading any extract from the newspaper in question.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK ARBITRATION
Subtopic:   COMMENTS OP ENGLISH NEWSPAPER
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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

Instead of reading, I may point out that the newspaper states that it is now more than two years since the previous government, by daring and unscrupulous trickery, befooled the railway organisation into an arbitration. The publication attacks the standing

Grand Trunk Arbitration

of the gentlemen who took part in that arbitration, and it is utterly at variance with the truth when it claims that iSir Thomas White, who was one of the members of the board, was a member of the "inner ring" of the Meighen government. Of course, every hon. member knows that he had nothing to do with the Meighen government, but had resigned from the House, if I remember rightly, before Mr. Meighen assumed office.

The article further goes on to say that, notwithstanding the tremendous increase in the cost of railway operation, the Canadian Government, for the purpose of forcing this railway completely into its power, steadily refused to give any rate increase until the fifteen per cent increase was allowed in March 1918. Well, as hon. members know, and as the fact is, there was no refusal by the Government of any application for a rate increase, the whole matter being in the hands of the Railway Commission.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK ARBITRATION
Subtopic:   COMMENTS OP ENGLISH NEWSPAPER
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LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Order. I would ask

the hon. member to refrain from making any comment or argument. I understood that he wished simply to call the attention of the Government to some very libellous statements reflecting on the honour of Canada and of the Canadian Government which have appeared in the London press. Having done so, he can ask what is the attitude of the Government with regard to those statements, but he should not enter upon any argument or comment.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK ARBITRATION
Subtopic:   COMMENTS OP ENGLISH NEWSPAPER
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CON

Henry Lumley Drayton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir HENRY DRAYTON:

Mr. Speaker, that is what I am endeavouring to do. but it is rather a large field to cover. However, I will be as brief as possible. I want to point out to the Government that the effect of the article is, in the first instance, a libel not only upon Canada, not only upon the Government of that day and upon the present Government, not only upon Canadian tradition, but something which is still more reprehensible,-an evident attempt by indirect means through the press to force this country into an abandonment of its rights, a veiled threat that unless exactly what the financial press of London thinks ought to be done by this Government in regard to the Grand Trunk is done, no further moneys can be raised in England for the development of Canada.

Now, my submission to the Government, Mr. Speaker, is that this article and this propaganda constitute a direct contempt of court. And other means apparently having failed, I would ask the Government

as to whether or not they are taking proceedings for contempt of court against this newspaper or any other newspaper engaged in similar propaganda. We must bear in mind that the very issue which is dealt with by this newspaper is now before the Privy Council by the express consent of the Canadian Government.

I would further point out this:

Contempt of court by speech or writing may be scandalizing the court itself, or by abusing parties to actions, or by prejudicing mankind in favour of or against a party before the cause is heard.

I am reading from the laws of. England, not from Canadian laws. It is laid down by English cases that:

There cannot be anything of greater consequence than to keep the streams of Justice clean and pure, that parties may proceed with safety both to themselves and to their characters. Speeches or writings misrepresenting the proceedings of the court or prejudicing the public for or gainst a party are contempts. Nothing is more incumbent on courts of Justice than to preserve their proceedings from being misrepresented nor is there anything of more pernicious consequence than to prejudice the minds of the public against persons concerned as parties in causes before the cause is finally heard.

It is pointed out by a well-known authority on English law, that one of the most mischievous things you can have is trial by newspapers when a trial by one of the regular tribunals of the country is going on,-just what we are having in this case.

In view of the authorities, which are perfectly clear, I desire to ask the Government what action is proposed to be taken against the publishers of this article.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK ARBITRATION
Subtopic:   COMMENTS OP ENGLISH NEWSPAPER
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LIB

William Lyon Mackenzie King (Prime Minister; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Liberal

Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Prime Minister) :

Mr. Speaker, I am somewhat surprised that my hon. friend should seek to give so much publicity to this matter. When it came up last week the right hon. leader of the Opposition (Mr. Meighen) took exception to an article in the same newspaper as reflecting upon the honour of this country. In reply I said that in so far as that article reflected upon the honour of this House or this Parliament, I placed myself in entire agreement with him. Clearly that states the position before the world to-day as to Canada's attitude. So far as the article reflects in any way upon any transaction of this Parliament, we give it no credence whatever. But when my hon. friend (Sir Henry Drayton) suggests that we should enter into a controversy with any section of the British press, I fear he is going rather far afield.

Questions

I cannot see that any further action is necessary on the part of the Government than simply to repeat that in so far as this article reflects upon the honour of this House or Parliament, there is no hon. member who would countenance it for a moment. The article has been replied to in other newspapers, and I think the English public will judge the source from which this and similar articles emanate, and will be as ready to appreciate the truth as any one else. In a word, I think my hon. friend is unduly sensitive with regard to this particular subject.

Topic:   GRAND TRUNK ARBITRATION
Subtopic:   COMMENTS OP ENGLISH NEWSPAPER
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THE GENOA CONFERENCE

LLOYD GEORGE MEMORANDUM AND RESOLUTIONS, CONFERENCE AT CANNES


On the Orders of the Day:


PRO

Thomas Alexander Crerar

Progressive

Hon. T. A. CRERAR (Marquette) :

Mr. Speaker, before the Orders of the Day are called, I should like to ask my hon. friend, the Prime Minister, if he would bring down for the information of the House the aide-memoire presented by Lloyd George to the Cannes Conference which laid the foundation for the Conference that is being opened in Genoa to-day; and also if he would bring down a copy of the resolutions passed at the Cannes Conference. I think we are entitled to this information since Canada is being represented at the Genoa Conference. If he could bring these memoranda and resolutions down to-morrow and have them incorporated in Hansard, the material would be available for hon. members' information and consideration in relation to this very important conference.

Topic:   THE GENOA CONFERENCE
Subtopic:   LLOYD GEORGE MEMORANDUM AND RESOLUTIONS, CONFERENCE AT CANNES
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April 10, 1922