March 1, 1926

LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Immigration and Colonization; Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Edmonton):

I was not

there; I did not hear the speech. I want to HOll-894

make it clear to my hon. friend that I am not raising any objection to any statement he is going to make about the Richmond Hill speech. My objection is rather to the other statement.

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CON

George Black

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BLACK (Yukon):

I do not take the

interjection of the Minister of the Interior as one of unqualified approval, though he says he does not object. I wonder if the minister objects to the press reports of the premier's speech at the Parker picnic, at Erindale, Ont. on 9th September, when he is reported as saying, although perhaps he did not say it:

You can never get the big problems solved unless you have a majority strong enough to allow you to act without fear or favour. If I were faced with the situation of the past four years I should ask for dissolution again.

I wonder if the Prime Minister would not like to expunge that statement? I wonder if the Minister of the Interior would not prefer to have that statement unsaid just as much as he would the unkind remarks made by the Prime Minister against the Progressive party.

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Immigration and Colonization; Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Edmonton):

No, I am

not raising any objection to that statement. There was no reflection on a Progressive, member or anyone else in that statement,.

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CON

George Black

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BLACK (Yukon):

No, Mr. Speakerthere is no reflection on a Progressive or anyone else; but there is a definition of the government's policy and the government's stand which the administration does not dare to take -to-day. Does the government say that the' big problems of Canada can be solved by it?

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LIB

Charles A. Stewart (Minister of Immigration and Colonization; Minister of Mines; Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. STEWART (Edmonton):

Yes.

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CON

George Black

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BLACK (Yukon):

Then it would be refreshing to see some headway made. We have been here nearly two months, and as yet there has been no business submitted to the House. The only thing submitted to parliament has been the Speech which the government placed in the mouth of His Excellency, but it does not foreshadow anything of substantial benefit to the people of this country. No, the Prime Minister says: You can never get big problems solved unless you have a majority strong enough to allow you to act without fear or favour. Has the government got a majority now strong enough to enable it to act without fear or favour?

Was the Prime Minister correctly reported in the Moose Jaw Times-Herald of 29th September when he is alleged to have said at Regina:

He was convinced that a government without a large majority m the House could not govern Canada with all its problems.

1400 COMMONS

The Address-Mr. Black (Yukon)

Well, now we have got a government without a large majority in the House, and there is an admission by its leader that it cannot govern Canada with all its problems. If it cannot why is it hanging on to the treasury benches? What does it hope to do? What is the alternative?

If the government had possessed a large majority it would not have been necessary to appeal to the country, and an election would not have been held until 1927.

The government went to the country because the situation was hopeless; it could not get ahead. But what can it do to-day?

Realizing that the country was faced with problems which could be solved only by a government with a majority in the House of Commons a decision had been made to appeal to the people.

Well, the people gave the government its answer. It gave my hon. friends across the way their answer, and1 they are not willing to take it. What was the sense of appealing to the people-prefacing the appeal with the statement that the situation as it was then was hopeless -if on coming back to a worse situation the government is going 4 p.m. still to hang on to office? I say that the pronouncement made by the Prime Minister for his party to the public of Canada ought to be taken seriously, and ought to be adhered to by the Prime Minister and the government and by their supporters. It should not be lost sight of for one minute, and for my part I do not propose to allow the government to lose sight of it for very long. The Prime Minister further said:

Is it sufficient that as a government we should continue in office drawing our indemnities and salaries as members and ministers and enjoying the other fruits of office when great national questions press for solution, which for want of adequate majority in parliament we are unable satisfactorily to cope with.

If that was the position of the government when they had a majority of 134 members what can it do to-day when its majority has been reduced to one varying from one to ten? Am I unfair when I quote the Prime Minister as making that statement? The Prime Minister asked:

Is it sufficient that as a government we should continue in office drawing our indemnities and salaries as members and ministers and enjoying the other fruits of office when great national questions press for solution-

The Prime Minister was not satisfied that the situation was sufficient. That is the reason he went to the country. I ask the Minister of the Interior is he satisfied that it is sufficient to-day? If it is not sufficient why do not hon. gentlemen on the treasury benches comply with the verdict of the people and get out? Surely the people asked them plainly enough to go. The Prime Minister predicted

that he could continue to hold office. Here is what he said:

Let me recall what I said a moment ago-as a government we can continue to hold office; we could I believe so arrange our sessional programme as to con-tmue to command in the House of Commons a support equal to that we have had during the last four years, but I doubt if we could do more than that- almost we would be reduced to marking time. This is not a moment in our country's affairs in which to mark time. It is a time to march forward.

How much marching forward could he do? It was evident he could stay in office no longer, and so instead of waiting until 1927 he dissolved parliament and went to the country. And now he is worse off than he was then. Yet now he and his colleagues are satisfied to stay here and draw their salaries and indemnities and enjoy the sweets of office. How are the government going to get away from that stand, except by admitting that' it is willing now to stay and do what the Prime Minister was ashamed to do at the time referred to. I should like to hear how the government get around that situation; I should like to hear how any explanation can be given that will compare the situation in September last with the situation to-day to the advantage of the government. Let the government, for once in its life, be candid and deal with the situation. Let it show the House how it is going to improve the situation which the Prime Minister complained of. How is the government going to solve the four great problems selected by the Prime Minister-transportation, immigration, the fiscal question and Senate reform? If the government could not deal with these problems during the past four years, how is it going to do so to-day? In what way has the government bettered its position? That, Mr. Speaker, is the government's whole impossible case as stated by its leader, and its whole unthinkable plea is, "Let us stay in office."

I have just had placed, in my hands a copy of a paper which, no doubt, has some standing in this House with certain members -I refer to the Grain Growers' Guide. In its issue of Wednesday, October 7, 1925, that journal published the following statement:

Mr. King Offers Bribes

Realizing that he will lose considerable support in the eastern provinces, Premier King is employing desperate tactics in an effort to win Liberal seats on the prairies. During the past four years he employed every art to lure the Progressive members into the Liberal camp. Last fall he toured this country gently wooing the electors, but he made no impression. Last week, however, on Tuesday evening at Neepawa, Wednesday evening at Regina, and Thursday evening at Calgary, he adopted a species of bribery. He urged >the electors to abandon the Progressive candidates and elect Liberal members to parliament, holding out a promise that if this were done he would be able to fulfil his preelection pledges on tariff reduction, the Hudson Bay

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

railway and others. He has stated that the Liberal party, with 117 members in parliament, had but a majority of oner and consequently, could not fulfil its pre-election pledges. "It isn't that the government does not want to do the things you want," declared Mr. King, at Neepawa. "You don't make dt possible for us to do them," he said, and he pointed out that the only way by which the government could carry out these pledges was by having a clear working majority of staunch and reliable Liberal members.

Not Progressive members. The government has not a clear majority of staunch Liberal members. Therefore it follows as a natural course that it cannot carry out its pledges, and if it cannot carry out its pledges why does it wish to continue its miserable existence in this House? The government's plain duty is to hand in its resignation to His Excellency and to advise him to call upon the leader of the Conservative party (lMr. Meighen) to form a government. When that is done business will revive and the exodus to the United States will stop. Immigrants will find a country able to assimilate them and give them remunerative and satisfactory employment. There will be no need to bait them here with free fares and a guarantee of a five-year job. Canada will attract population on its merits just as people are now attracted to the United States, and there will be no necessity for artificial inducements to lure people to come to this country. Canada will awake from her four years of stagnation and confidence will be restored. The government of the country will again function in a dignified and efficient manner after nearly five years of worse than marking time while, as Mr. Mackenzie King puts it, he and his colleagues have been drawing their salaries and indemnities.

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CON

Isaac Duncan MacDougall

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. I. D. MACDOUGALL (Inverness):

Mr. Speaker, if your native modesty rises not in revolt against the many eulogies sounded in your favour by hon. members, may I, the youngest member of this House, youngest in years and in parliamentary experience, be permitted to add my humble tribute to those so eloquently expressed1 by previous speakers in this debate? My observations in this

House lead me to affirm that you, Sir, possess all the requirements, all the attributes, which should properly distinguish one in the dignified and exalted position which it is your privilege to occupy. In honouring you this House has done honour to itself.

Before entering upon a discussion of the legislative programme outlined in the Speech from the Throne, let me state that it is not my purpose to indulge in carping criticism, or with bitter invective to upbraid the Liberal party or any other party. True, hon. members are not of one mind politically; we differ in our judgment as to methods and policies; but fain would I believe that there is a common ground, a plane far exalted above the somewhat sordid level of party politics, upon which we the representatives of the Canadian people may meet and agree. May we not of this fact make common cause, that irrespective of political affiliations we all desire to serve and advance a great, a common country, to which we owe a mutual allegiance and a mutual love?

To my mind, there is in this country a question more important than any or all the specific measures outlined in the Speech from the Throne, aye, more important than any amendment that could be suggested to that Speech. That question is whether or not the spirit of confederation is to endure in this land, or whether it is to be supplanted by sectionalism and selfishness bearing in their wake, as they inevitably must, disintegration and political chaos. Liberals, Conservatives, Progressives or Labour-all will admit that confederation was a great ideal-a goal worthy of the far-seeing and patriotic men who consummated it; but confederation was born of good faith and a sincere desire among the provinces to help bear one another's burdens. It is this spirit of good faith, unity, co-operation and sympathy between the provinces that the people's representatives in parliament must ever jealously guard, cherish and foster. Unless the provinces, the integral factors of Canadian union, are willing to work together in peace and harmony, Canada cannot achieve its highest political destiny; confederation itself may not endure. In order to prevent illwill and suspicion in the relations between the provinces, the federal government must be in a position to mete out even-handed justice to every province in this Dominion. If there is in the minds of the people of any province or provinces even a well-grounded suspicion that their rights are not being protected and their interests not being fully represented in this government, a situation fraught with dangerous possibilities to Canadian unity may well develop. To guard against any such fatal consequence, the federal government, which is supposed to be a government of all the people and for all the country, must be able to comply with two important conditions-conditions without which that spirit of co-operation and goodwill so essential to national unity cannot be maintained. These conditions are, first, the representation of all the provinces on a fair basis in the cabinet councils of this government; secondly, the ability of this government to formulate a legislative

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

programme suited to the needs and requirements of every province in this Dominion; not specially designed to catch the votes of a particular group or to placate a particular section of this country. The present government, and it is not may purpose to abuse or to deride it, is clearly incapable of supplying either of these two conditions, without which unity and goodwill cannot prevail between the provinces of Canada. Take the matter of cabinet representation. We find to-day that four important provinces in this Dominion, and one of the four the most populous, have no minister-no voice whatever in the cabinet councils of the government. Is that a situation that makes for goodwill, sympathy and harmony between the provinces? Nor is this government free; not even its most enthusiastic supporter would contend for a moment that it is free to bring down a legislative programme suited to the requirements of the whole country. This government can bring down only such measures as it thinks will meet with the support of the Progressive group in the House. In order to retain power it must always trim its sails to catch Progressive breezes. It cannot bring down legislation which it may think necessary in the interests of all the people of Canada and of all the provinces. As has been said in this House, the government can act only by the *grace and with the permission ,of the hon. member for Brandon (Mr. Forke); unless his spirit moves it, it cannot move at all.

Now this country requires stable government; it requires a government capable of taking forward steps. There are great problems crying for solution in Canada to-day; the problems mentioned by the Prime Minister at Richmond Hill are just as acute at the present moment as they ever were! For nothing has been done by this government to solve those problems since the Prime Minister made his announcement at Richmond Hill. Consequently this country demands a government which will be able to make some progress in the interests of the people as a whole. In face of this situation, with our people clamouring for action on the part of the government, we have in power an administration which is transfixed, motionless, and incapable of motion, like Joshua's sun in Ajalon. A striking exemplification of the im-poteney, I might add the political and moral cowardice, of this government is to be found in its unwillingness or its inability to formulate a national fuel policy for this country. This is a question of great national importance, which vitally affects the industrial and commercial welfare of all Canada. If our

country is to attain that proud position industrially and commercially of which it is certainly capable, our government must take immediate steps to make Canada independent of foreign countries in the matter of its fuel supply. If we do not do this we must be content to remain a vassal state in respect of industry, manufacturing and commerce. It is impossible to over-estimate the importance of coal in the industrial development of any nation. Students of economic history have attempted, and successfully attempted, to explain the growth of such countries as England, Germany and the United States in wealth, in power and in population, solely in terms of their coal industries. Writing on this very subject Professor Van Hise of Wisconsin university in a book entitled The Conservation of the National Resources of the United States, says in respect of coal, to which he attributes the industrial and commercial supremacy of that country:

Coal is by far the most important of all the mineral products. Next to coal in importance is iron. These two are of much greater consequence than all the other mineral products combined. The existence of extensive coal and iron fields has profoundly influenced modern civilization. The greatest commercial nations are England, America and Germany and each owes its industrial greatness to its extensive coal deposits.

Indeed, coal and iron may be described as the twin foundations of modern manufacturing industries and of commerce. They are at the same time the principal source of national power, wealth and population. 'In this respect England furnishes a very apt and at the same time a very striking example. In the centuiy from 16G0 to 1700, when England depended principally upon agriculture, and, a little shipping and commerce, the population increased by only 25 per cent; and from 1600 to 1760, while England in the latter part of that period still depended primarily on these three activities the population increased by 35 per cent. About the year 1760. there occurred what students of industrial history are pleased to term the industrial revolution; this was a revolution in methods and practices based fundamentally upon the use of coal in industry. If we take the 150 years from 1760 to 1910 we find that the population of England increased not by 35 per cent, as in the previous 160 years, but by 455 per cent. We find that even to-day England attaches great importance to its coal industry. This is shown by the fact, that the British government classifies it as one of the key industries of the country, and it may be of interest to certain gentlemen who are disciples of the Manchester school to note that as a key industry, whenever England's coal industry becomes threatened by outside com-

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

petition, it can be immediately protected by a duty of 30 per cent. Similar tendencies showing the importance of coal in national development can be discerned in the industrial history of Germany and the United States, where in both cases a marked increase in national wealth, power and influence is found to have resulted from the development of their extensive and important coal resources. Knowing that the industrial and commercial supremacy of England, America and Germany is largely due to the fact that these countries wisely conserved and used their great coal resources and so maintained their independence of foreign countries in the matter of their fuel supply, it is certainly logical to contend that if Canada is ever to attain that "place in the sun," industrially and commercially, which a bountiful nature ordained to be ours, this government must take immediate steps to formulate a national fuel policy. There is no good reason why in the years to come Canada should not occupy an important, if not a pre-eminent, position in manufacturing, in commerce and in industry. We cannot do this if we continue to be as we are at present, dependent upon a foreign country for our fuel supply.

Now I wish, Mr. Speaker, to lay before this House the situation which confronts the Alberta and Nova Scotia coal operators, but not in any partisan spirit, for this is a real national problem which should be solved by the government. Our chief manufacturing provinces are Ontario and Quebec, situated in central Canada. On the other hand, our coal deposits are situated in the extreme east and west in the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta and Nova Scotia, and to some extent also in New Brunswick. Up to the present time the central provinces have been depending principally, if not entirely, upon the United States for their supply of both anthracite and bituminous coal for domestic and for steam purposes. Last year, taking into account -the amount of the American coal used for coking, the importations of United States coal into central Canada amounted to 15,000,000 tons. Which means, Sir, that 120,000,000 good Canadian dollars were sent to the United States to provide employment for their miners. And while this was going on, the miners of Alberta and Nova Scotia in many cases were walking the streets in search of employment and their families were threatened with starvation.

I have tried to point out from the industrial history of other countries the great importance that we should attach to formulating a national fuel policy. But aside altogether from that consideration, we may approach it

even from a selfish point of view. If the provinces of Ontario and Quebec say that they should purchase their coal where they can get it cheapest, I want to show them that they can no longer continue to rely upon the American coal operators and expect to get their fuel at the same prices as they have been paying in the past. In other words, I want to show briefly the tendency in prices of American coal in the future as I see them. Let me take the anthracite supply first. The householders of Ontario and Quebec have been depending almost entirely upon American anthracite for their domestic needs. Those of us who have given any study to the coal industry of the United States, know that competent geologists estimate that the present available supply of their anthracite coal will be practically depleted within the next quarter of a century-for no longer than twenty-five years at most will the provinces of Ontario and Quebec be able to obtain American anthracite coal. But long before that time elapses, perhaps within the next decade, the United States will not be producing enough anthracite coal to satisfy their domestic demand, and if the people of the central provinces continue the present policy of depending upon American sources of supply for their domestic fuel, they will find that within the next decade American anthracite will be a luxury and that they will have to pay the price of a luxury to obtain it. I venture the prediction, that within the next ten years the people of Ontario and Quebec, if our government does not bestir itself and formulate a national policy to enable them to get Nova Scotia and Alberta coal, will have to pay for whatever American anthracite they can get, not $17 a ton as at present but more like $25 or $30 a ton. I might point out that at the present time two of the anthracite coal areas which were important sources of supply, the Carbondale and Scranton districts, have already petered out.

When we come to bituminous coal, we find there are also certain tendencies which should convince one that the price of American bituminous coal will be on the upgrade in the years to come. Sixty-five per cent of the American bituminous coal which comes into the St. Lawrence market in direct competition with Nova Scotia and Alberta coal, is from the unorganized coal fields in the United States. As hon. members know, there was a time in the history of this and every other country when workingmen were denied the right to organize and to deal with their employers through collective bargaining; but that day has passed. Public opinion to-day

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

grants to labour the right of collective bargaining. The fight is going on in those unorganized coal fields of the United States on behalf of the men to get this right acknowledged by the operators. And I venture to say that within the next year or two, those unorganized fields, which, now supply sixty-five per cent of the American bituminous coal coming into direct competition with Nova Scotia and Alberta coal, will be organized. The result will be that these men will rightly demand1 the same scale of wages and the same working hours that obtain now in the organized bituminous coal fields of the United States. That will increase the price of American bituminous coal, and the American operator sending his product into the St. Lawrence market will pass that increased cost on to the consumer in Quebec and Ontario in the form of a considerably increased price for his coal.

Nova Scotia at the present time is suffering from a very severe and, I might say, very unfair competition in the St. Lawrence market. When we realize that in the United States they have a bituminous coal area of 496,700 square miles, we must appreciate what Nova Scotia is up against in trying to help in giving Canada a national fuel policy. Then again, the majority of the coal fields in the United States are inland, while many of our workings in Nova Scotia are submarine. Everyone acquainted with coal mining knows that it is much more difficult to operate a submarine mine, because you have very heavy costs for pumping and haulage which you do not meet, with in inland mining.

There is another point to which I wish to refer in respect to Nova Scoitia. Before 1914 the Nova Scotia operators were fairly well entrenched in the St. Lawrence market. They lost that market in 1914. Why? They lost it principally for patriotic reasons. The coal companies had a fleet of their own boats carrying coal from Sydney, Cape Breton, to Montreal. The government of Canada commandeered that fleet of boats for war service The result was that the Americans, who did not become a belligerent nation until 1917, were able to take advantage of this position and become strongly entrenched in the St. Lawrence market, and to-day the province of Nova Scotia is suffering on account of its patriotism. Talking of patriotism, I may say in reference to the miners of Nova Scotia, who have been given some advertising throughout this country, and who are sometimes depicted as lawbreakers, that the town of Glace Bay, the largest town in the province of Nova Scotia, having a mining population exclusively, Was the only part of Canada where the gov-

emment had to seriously consider the idea of stopping voluntary recruiting, because the miners were enlisting in such great numbers. I wish to state that in 1914, before the war broke out, and before an unprecedented demand for coal developed, the output of the United States annually amounted to about 400,000,000 tons. When the war broke out there was an unprecedented demand for coal. The coal industries of England, of Germany, of France, and to some extent of Canada, were demoralized by the exigencies of the war. The United States therefore, which did not become a belligerent nation until 1917, was in a position to take advantage of this unprecedented situation in the world coal trade, and coal mines were opened up in that country which in normal times wodld never have been opened at all. The result was that while they were producing 400,000,000 tons in 1914, in 1930, after the war was over, they were producing 900,000,000 tons. They more than doubled their annual output. When the coal trade returned to normal a great many of those small operators who had not made a very heavy investment in plant, saw that they could not compete with their larger competitors, hence they adopted a system of mining known as stripping, by which, instead of attempting to recover all the recoverable coal such as is done by the coal operator in Alberta and Nova Scotia, they resorted to a system of taking out the cheapest coal they could get in the mine and letting the rest go, and in some cases coal obtained in that way has been coming into competition with Nova Scotia coal in the St. Lawrence market. Nova Scotia is being subjected to very unfair competition by the United States coal industry. Then we also have distress coal coming into Canada. Everyone familiar with coal mining costs knows that it requires a great deal of money to keep a large coal mining plant idle for one day. Evidence given before the Interstate Commerce Commission of the United States in 1921 was to the effect that when a large coal mining plant was idle for one day and worked the next day, the cost of the idle day would increase the cost of the coal the next day on which the mine worked by seventy-five cents a ton. In order to avoid that loss American operators tried to work their mines as regularly as possible, and they found it good business sometimes to sell some of their coal at cost, or a little below in order to offset the expense of an idle day. The coal obtained in that way is termed distress coal and in some cases it comes into the St. Lawrence market and competes with Nova Scotia coal.

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

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LIB

Willis Keith Baldwin

Liberal

Mr. BALDWIN:

Does not the hon. gentleman consider that it was a great blunder for the government to commandeer the fleets of boats of the coal companies of Nova Scotia, and thus prevent them from shipping their coal to the St. Lawrence market?

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CON

Isaac Duncan MacDougall

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MACDOUGALL:

If my hon. friend

thinks that it was a great blunder for the government to support the allied nations in that war then, perhaps, it was wrong.

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LIB

Willis Keith Baldwin

Liberal

Mr. BALDWIN:

My hon. friend did not

answer the question.

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CON

Isaac Duncan MacDougall

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MACDOUGALL:

I wish to point out

what the gaining of the markets in central Canada for Alberta and Saskatchewan coal would mean to those two provinces. We find that in 1922 the coal mines of Alberta worked only 237 days. In 1923 they worked 227 days. In 1924 they worked 228 days. In Nova Scotia in 1923 the coal mines worked 250 days, and in 1924 only 202 days. If this government would formulate a policy by which Alberta and Nova Scotia coal could be obtained to supply the fuel requirements of central Canada, the wages of workmen in the Alberta field could be increased by about $500 a year, and the wages of miners in the Nova Scotia coal fields, on account of the continuity of employment that would be provided, could be increased by about $400 a year. That would go a long way to prevent any industrial unrest in those two provinces. Speaking of Alberta, although they are now producing yearly only 5,000,000 tons of coal; with their present equipment and plant they could produce a yearly tonnage of 12,000,000, if they had a market for it. That means that they could increase their output by 7,000,000 tons. Averaging that coal at $6 a ton, if the Alberta operators could get access to the central markets, it would mean that $35,000,000 more would be spent in the province of Alberta. In Nova Scotia we are producing about 6,000,000 tons of coal annually. With the present development of our coal industry we could very well produce 10,000,000 tons of coal a year. That means that we could increase our present output by 4,000,000 tons, or, averaging that coal at a cost of $5, we could increase our circulation of money in the province of Nova Scotia by $20,000,000. I think if that were done we would hear less about the grievances of the province of Nova Scotia, and Maritime rights than we do. What is the remedy for the situation?

I think my hon. friend the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Macdonald) and I would agree upon the remedy to be applied; at least we would have agreed some years ago, but I do not know whether we will to-day.

I think the minister, in addressing the miners at Stellarton in 1921, gave them at least a part of the remedy when he told them that if his government came into power and he were elected they would put a real duty upon American coal. I think he added, in very pathetic language, that they would thereby create conditions in the mining towns of Nova Scotia which would bring the sunshine of prosperity to every miner's home. I am sorry, Mr. Speaker, that those conditions have not been created. Perhaps there may be some reluctance on the part of my hon. friend the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Macdonald) to take that stand in this House to-day in respect to increased protection on American coal, 'but for my part I have no reluctance whatever. I am not afraid to take that stand just because certain men may have studied the principles laid down by Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill, Ricardo and others, for I consider it to be the solution of a problem of vital importance in this country. Some people may think that in order to give us fair competition in the markets of central Canada, the duty on American coal will have to be made very high. I have had an opportunity of studying coal mining costs in Nova Scotia, and it is my opinion that if this government would take a fearless stand, something along the line the Minister of National Defence advocated in 1921, and would increase the duty on American soft coal from 50 to 75 cents a ton, would put a duty of 75 cents a ton on anthracite screenings, and 50 cents a ton on American anthracite, and then use a portion of the revenue so derived to establish in Montreal and Toronto coking plants for the coking of Nova Scotia and Alberta coal, by that means we could give to the householders of Ontario, Nova Scotia coke, eight tons of which is equal in fuel value to twelve tons of American anthracite.

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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

The hon. member has referred to production costs. May I ask what is the cost per ton in the mines of Nova Scotia?

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CON

Isaac Duncan MacDougall

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MACDOUGALL:

Of course, I can give my hon. friend privately the information he desires, but I do not think it would be fair for me to publish the costs of these mining companies. That is a thing for this government to go into if they intend to follow the steps I am suggesting.

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LAB

James Shaver Woodsworth

Labour

Mr. WOODSWORTH:

Do I understand that 75 cents per ton would cover the difference between the cost of mining in Nova Scotia and the cost of mining in the Pennslyvania fields?

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

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CON

Isaac Duncan MacDougall

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MACDOUGALL:

It is my opinion that a duty of 75 cents a ton on American bituminous, 50 cents per ton upon anthracite, and 75 cents per ton on anthracite screenings, would put us in a fair position to compete with American coal in the markets of central Canada.

So far as Alberta is concerned, what they require is a reduced freight rate which will enable them to ship their coal into the markets of central Canada, and I want to say to the representatives from Alberta that I for one am very much id favour of seeing the Canadian National Railways establish such a freight rate as will enable the operators in Alberta to ship that splendid coal into the markets of central Canada to help supply the Canadian fuel demand there. But so far as Nova Scotia is concerned, we require an increased duty. Then if the government gave a subsidy, or assisted, in the erection of coking plants in Toronto and Montreal, by getting a sale for the by-products we could sell that coke at $12 a ton, which is considerably less than the consumers in central Ontario are now paying for American anthracite, and as I said before, eight tons of the Nova Scotia product has a fuel equivalent of twelve tons of American anthracite.

So far as the province of Nova Scotia i3 concerned, Mr. Speaker, this is our principal demand. One-fifth of the entire population of Nova Scotia depend directly upon the coal industry. If that coal industry is allowed to languish because . this government is either afraid or unable to formulate a national fuel policy which will give us access to the markets of central Canada, then the industrial pulse of the province of Nova Scotia must continue to beat very feebly. I do not see why we should not get the sympathy, even of those who are professed free traders. We were promised when we entered confederation that we would find a market for our Nova Scotia coal in central Canada, and if we are going to be precluded from selling our coal there, the one chief benefit we were to derive from confederation will be lost, and no longer will it be reasonable to expect that the province of Nova Scotia will continue to carry her share of the burden as a factor in the Canadian union, if she is not going to be given a fair deal, and if her chief industry is to be allowed to languish.

Reverting to the subject matter of the Speech from the Throne, the opening paragraph seeks to convey the impression that Canada is enjoying prosperity in a very bountiful degree. Should this paragraph be

read by the sorrowful Canadian contingent who during the last four years were compelled by the fell clutch of circumstance to seek employment in a foreign land, they may well realize the feedings of Tantalus, rich, and in the sight of abundance, but yet eternally starving. It is true that Providence has given us a bountiful harvest, and perhaps it is in keeping with the principles of "divine right", to which this government seems to adhere, that they, having no good works of their own to commend them, should arrogate to themselves the good works of the Creator. We may leave this paragraph in the Speech from the Throne for the edification of the credulous.

In its next paragraph the Speech informs us that the government has decided to put into effect a comprehensive immigration scheme for Canada. When one reflects upon the efforts made by this government in the past to give us a comprehensive, or any other kind of an immigration scheme, and the dismal failures which have resulted, we can hardly be expected to be optimistic about this new venture of this government. I understand that in the comprehensive scheme suggested by the government they intend to guarantee to emigrants a free passage to this country and five years' employment. That is a very nice thing for the emigrant. But we have in this countrv thousands of unemployed walking the streets of our city and looking for employment. These Canadian citizens have borne the "heat and the burden of the day"; they have contributed their share of taxation to the public coffers, and surely if the government can be generous enough to guarantee five years' employment to emigrants they should try to do something for the unemployed within our own gates.

With respect to rural credits I will discuss that question when it comes up. I want to say, however, without hesitation, that I am absolutely in favour of the principle of rural credits for the farmers of this country, and I should like to see it extended also, if possible, to those engaged in the fishing industry. Some hon. gentleman saw fit to condemn the rural credits system of Denmark. I am mindful of the fact that two commissions which visited Denmark also condemned the rural credit system in force in that country. A third commission, however, was unanimously in favour of the scheme. It pointed out that a rural credit scheme was adopted in Denmark in 1894, when the exports of farm products from the entire country amounted to only $34 per capita. In 1917 the exports of farm products from Denmark amounted to $119 per capita, and a great

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

deal of this increased output was due to the operation of a wise system of rural credits.

With respect to the completion of the Hudson Bay railway, my attitude is this: If I can be convinced that the completion of that road is necessary, that it will help to build up the great Canadian west, and that the cost will not be excessive, I shall certainly be only too glad to give my support to the project. At the same time I will expect that when we from the east present the demands that we intend to present with respect to the construction of branch lines which are necessary to the development of the eastern part of this Dominion, we shall receive the same sympathetic measure of support from the representatives of western Canada as we are ready to accord to the Hudson Bay railway under the conditions I have mentioned.

A roj^al commission has been promised to inquire into the rights of the Maritime provinces. When I listened to that promise in the Speech from the Throne I felt that those men who inaugurated and are now strongly supporting the Maritime rights movement in those little provinces by the sea should be congratulated. At the inception of that movement they were ridiculed by the Liberal press of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. They were depicted as calamity howlers, blue ruin-ists, and purveyors of pessimism. New adjectives of a highly coloured nature were coined and flung at their devoted heads. The hon. member for Queens-Lunenburg (Mr. Duff) himself, following out the old policy of the Liberals in Nova Scotia, declared in this House that, there were no such things as Maritime rights, and that the whole business was Tory propaganda. It seems strange that the present government, composed of very eminent men, should go to the trouble of appointing a commission to investigate a matter which is nothing but Tory propaganda. Mr. Speaker, I am glad that the present government have recognized the fact that the Maritime provinces have rights. As to the appointment of a commission of inquiry, however, I want to tell them that on October 29 the people of the Maritime provinces appointed their own commission. That commission now sits within the four walls of this chamber. I want to make this further statement to the government: that while the solid sixteen that represented the province of Nova Scotia in the last parliament sat silent in their seats from 1921 to 1925, although there were Maritime grievances to be remedied, the commission appointed on October 29th last have no intention of remaining passive and submissive;

they will take every occasion to press in the strongest possible manner the claims of the provinces they represent.

I may as well tell hon. members frankly that we have a bad situation down there. I have tried to deal with the coal situation which is, perhaps, the chief problem this government should endeavour to solve, at least so far as the province of Nova 5 p.m. Scotia is concerned. Our people are leaving; they are getting discouraged; they find it impossible to earn a living. Our industries are languishing. There is urgent need that some solution of the problem be found. The senior member for Halifax (Mr. Black) said, referring to secession, that he did not think such a movement would find support from a corporal's guard in Nova Scotia. I sincerely hope that it would not, because I do not preach nor do I agitate secession; but I want to tell the House plainly, frankly and fearlessly that something must be done by this government to give the Maritime provinces those rights to which they are entitled as integral factors of Canadian union. It would be with "footing slow and sad reluctance" that we would turn our back on the great work commenced in good faith by our fathers in 1867. And before any such desperate measure is thought of or suggested, much less acted upon, in the Maritime provinces, the government should give a sympathetic ear to the people of the Maritime provinces, who are just as desirous as any other portion of our population to see that a united Canada is built up upon the firm foundations established by the Fathers of Confederation.

We understand from the Speech from the Throne that the government intend to appoint a tariff commission. I understand very readily why they are taking that course. The government want that commission to find some policy for it. This government have no policy on the tariff question and they are afraid to have any. As I listened to some hon. gentlemen opposite declaring for protection, while others pronounced for low tariff and some for no tariff at all, I wondered what the result would be if by a miracle the hundred gentlemen sitting opposite became endowed with the gift of divers tongues and sought one after the other to explain the Liberal tariff policy. We should have a confusion before which the confusion that raged round the Tower of Babel would fade forever into insignificance. I suppose it was because the Liberal party have been hopelessly at sea on the tariff question since 1921 that their honoured and distinguished leader saw fit to frame a chart to try to guide that party.

The Address-Mr. Macdougall

But when we contemplate the situation in their ranks on that policy, when we remember the diversity of opinion expressed by their own members, and when we reflect on what happened on October 29, we must come to the conclusion that, in spite of that chart prepared by their leader, "the mists are around them and the fog."

In conclusion, although the liberal government has no mandate to bring down any Speech from the Throne or to formulate any policies after its decisive defeat on the 29th October last, I would point out to the leader of the House (Mr. Lapointe) that he and his government have no mandate even from the Liberal party itself, to 'bring down the measures announced in the Speech from the Throne. I would like to ask him, since he is in his seat: Where and on what occasion during the last election did he ever get up before his compatriots in Quebec and say that the policy of the Liberal party was to restore to the province of Alberta its natural resources? In what part of Quebec or of eastern Canada was that question ever discussed during the last election? Did he ever discuss before his electors in Quebec the question of rural credits or the completion of the Hudson Bay railway? How does the government know that the rank and file of the Liberal party are in favour of the policy outlined in the Speech from the Throne? The Liberals who were elected in Quebec were elected to solve the problems which Mr. King, the Prime Minister, said at Richmond Hill were pressing upon this country so severely. There is no mention of those problems in the Speech from the Throne. The government have thrown overboard the principles of the Liberal party and have seen fit to try to implement the principles of a small group in this House who, although they are eminently respectable and intelligent, and for whom I have not an unkind word, nevertheless must realize that they represent in this chamber but eight per cent of the Canadian electorate. I wish to say in conclusion that the people of Canada will not long continue to tolerate in this country a situation in which the tail wags the dog.

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CON

Harry Bernard Short

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. H. B. SHORT (Digby-Annapolis):

Mr. Speaker, as one of the new members from Nova Scotia, may I along with my predecessors be permitted to extend to you my felicitations and congratulations upon your reappointment as Speaker of this House? I have been very much impressed with the fairness and dignity with which you administer the affairs of your high office and the courtesy that you always show to new members.

I have been designated by hon. members opposite as one of the Maritime lighters' group. They jnay call us what they like, but I support the policy of my right hon. leader, the leader of the opposition (Mr. Meighen) who, when the campaign opened last September, declared he realized that the Maritime provinces have their problems; that they had not received a fair deal from the late government, and that he was ready if he came into power to solve those problems even if it were necessary to take from the revenue of this country a sufficient sum to do so. Contrast this statement with the one made by the Right Hon. Mr. Mackenzie King, Prime Minister of this Dominion. Speaking at Kent-ville, Nova Scotia, he asked the audience: "What are Maritime rights?" He said: "If I knew what they were I would try to right them." Is it possible that he did not know? If he did not, he had for two years in this House sixteen members from Nova Scotia known as the "solid sixteen," and for three years he had fifteen members from that province. If the Prime Minister did not know what those problems were, surely those members who were sent to parliament as representatives from Nova Scotia should have told him. They certainly were, to use a slang phrase, not on to their job; they must have been asleep at the switch, because according to the records I have failed to find that one of those gentlemen during the term of their office from 1921 to 1925 ever stood up on the floor of this parliament and had anything to say about the needs and wants of Nova Scotia.

What those problems and rights are is well known. Under confederation we were conceded certain rights which have never been given to us. The question of Maritime rights was not the only issue in the late election in Nova Scotia. The tariff was also a most important issue, and the policy on this issue as laid down by my right hon. leader was declared on every platform by the eleven members who were returned as his supporters on this sidle of the House. We in Nova Scotia realize that if we are to make any progress we must have an adequate tariff, a tariff sufficient to protect the industries of our province. Two of our great industries there are steel and coal, from the latter of which the province derives its greatest revenue, and unless these industries are protected and fostered we cannot succeed and be prosperous. We must have a market for these, and that market is the Canadian market. If we cannot get our coal into the central provinces of Quebec and Ontario, we cannot expect to prosper. Why

The Address-Mr. Short

is it that our Canadian National railways cannot haul coal from Nova Scotia to Quebec and Ontario when United! States railroads can haul the Same kinds of coal from Pennsylvania and Wfest Virginia to those points? The distance is no greater from Nova Scotia than from the points named, and I am of opinion that if the management of our National railways were anxious for business and if the government of this country desired to assist Nova Scotia, a way out of this difficulty could be found. Arrangements have already been made with the National railways to have

25.000 tons of coal hauled from Alberta to Ontario at seven dollars a ton. But when an arrangement on the same mileage basis rate is asked for Nova Scotia to haul coal from Sydney to Montreal to relieve distress in that district, what are we told? We are told that the management of the Canadian National Railways cannot do so. This is one of the Maritime rights. If the Canadian National Railways can haul Alberta coal into Ontario for seven dollars a ton, why cannot the same mileage rate be granted to Nova Scotia? This can and should be done and it is the duty of the government to see that our province is treated fairly in this respect.

We have in Nova Scotia another great natural industry, one which I am surprised to find is not mentioned in the Speech from the Throne, namely, the fishing industry. I am proud to say that I have been connected with that industry for the past thirty years, and I feel therefore that in whatever I say on the subject in this House I know whereof I speak. In the constituency of Digby-Annapolis, which I have the honour to represent, we depend very largely-in fact one section of my constituency depends almost entirely-upon the fishing industry for a revenue. I am. surprised that the Prime Minister, when he framed this Speech from the Throne, should have overlooked this important industry!, because it employs in Nova Scotila alone some 25,000 persons, and in the whole of Canada some

70.000 persons. There is invested in vessels and equipment about $50,000,000', and the industry produces in wealth annually between $40,000,000 and $50,000,000. Surely therefore it is an industry that should receive some consideration from the government. It has not made the progress which would have been possible had it received from this and previous governments the assistance to which it is entitled. It is capable of wonderful development and instead of producing $40,000,000 or $50,000,000 per annum of wealth to this country it should, and indeed could, produce double that amount. If the government will

give more attention to fostering this great industry and assisting in its development in every way I am sure the expansion which I have stated as possible will be realized.

What we need now is an improvement in breakwaters along the coast to provide facilities for the fishermen to prosecute their vocation. We need also further markets for these products and cheaper transportation to these markets. True, the home market 'has shown a considerable increase in the last few years. This is due partly to the advertising propaganda which .has been carried on during the past two years in which the government has borne half of the expense and the dealers the other half. While the amount expended has brought good results, I have no doubt that if double that amount is spent in judicious advertising in the future, to bring this great food product to the attention of the public, a much greater demand will be created, and that will go a long way towards putting the industry on a more prosperous basis.

The people of Canada should eat more fish, as it is one of nature's best foods. The consumption of fish per capita in Canada is 21 pounds per annum, in the United States 18 pounds, and in England, where more fish is eaten than in any other country except Japan, it is 54 pounds per annum. If we could only induce the Canadian people to eat as much fish as they do in England, say 54 pounds per capita per annum, we should be able to find a great outlet for our fish products and at the same time furnish a cheap, nutritious and palatable food for the country. This can be done if the government will only give to the industry that assistance to which it is entitled. The government should look at the matter from a national point of view and try by means of adequate and proper advertising to induce the people of Canada to eat more of this food product. If this were done it would be 'better for the country and it would provide us with an outlet for a wonderful Canadian product.

It is a well known fact that fish is one of the most helpful .and nutritious foods known to man. If we could create a further market for our fish it would stimulate the industry and give increased employment to our fishermen, thus keeping our own folks at home rather than having them leave our shores to seek a livelihood in foreign countries. While our 'home market has shewn some improvement in the past year or two, I am sorry to say that our export market has hardly held its own; as a matter of fact, I do not think we are exporting as much

The Address-Mr. Short

fish to-day as we did some years ago. The American market, to which certain sections of Nova Scotia have always had to look for an outlet, is practically closed to us to-day because of the Fordney tariff, and it is only when there is a scarcity in the United States of certain varieties of fish that we can ship our product into that country, because the}' are themselves large producers and exporters of this commodity. Of course, we send shellfish there such as lobsters, scallops and other varieties of that class, inasmuch as there is no duty, the reason being that the United States do not produce a sufficient quantity of this class of fish to provide their own markets. On all other varieties however they have a prohibitive duty, and, as I have just said, it is only in times of scarcity there that-we can get our fish into that market. The Fordney tariff is so framed that it practically shuts us out and we have to look to other markets for an outlet for our dried and pickled fish, principally the West Indies, South America, the Mediterranean and other places.

This government, I think, should do everything possible to assist the industry in increasing its trade with foreign countries by having our trade agents in those countries put forth every effort to secure orders for the Canadian producers, at the same time educating the fishermen of Canada in improved methods of curing fish for export. At the present time, I regret to say, our dried and pickled fish for export does not compare favourably with the same class of fish produced in Norway and other countries, and it is the duty of our government to give all the instruction they possibly can to the industry so that the Canadian product when exported may receive as good a price as is obtained for the same class of product put up in Norway and other fishing countries. In the green State our fish is equal to that produced anywhere else in the world.

We have in this country a market that is capable of great development for fish, both fresh and frozen. I find according to statistics compiled by the Fisheries department that the amount of fresh and frozen fish shipped from the Maritime provinces last year to Quebec, Ontario and points further west was 42,000,000 pounds. Yet the hon. member for Queens-Lunenburg (Mr. Duff), speaking some days ago, made the statement that only about one per cent of the fish produced in Nova Scotia was sold in Canada. Let me examine the facts. Since the figures for 1925 were not available I have secured from the department the figures showing the total catch of all kinds of fish, except shellfish, for 1924 in the province of Nova Scotia. The total

[Mr Short.]

catch for that province was 195,823,300 pounds and of this amount 42,000,000 pounds of fresh, frozen and smoked fish were shipped to Quebec, Ontario and the west. It must be remembered that that 42,000,000 pounds would represent at least double that quantity, or about 80,000,000 pounds, because a large proportion of the product is converted into finnan haddies and filets, and 50 per cent is lost in processing. The consumption of Nova Scotia fish in Canada is therefore at least 30 per cent of these varieties alone. In addition to this a considerable quantity of pickled and salt fish is sold. Now, what becomes of the statement of the hon. member for Lunenburg (Mr. Duff) that only one per cent of the Nova Scotia catch is consumed in Canada? If the hon. member's statements regarding the other matters in Nova Scotia which he spoke of are no more correct than his statement with regard to our fisheries, which he claims to have some personal knowledge of, what credence can the House place in his entire speech?

Now, Sir, I want to show the House what handicaps we have to overcome. Yet under these adverse conditions we have been able to market 30 per cent of our catch in Canada. If we are given the transportation rates that we are entitled to, and the government give the attention it should to the fishing industry, you can readily see what a wonderful expansion is possible. I think the hon. gentleman must have been speaking of his own constituency when he stated that Canada used only one per cent of the catch of Nova Scotia, because it is from his constituency that most of the fish is exported. But there are other sections of Nova Scotia which also produce large quantities of fish, and a substantial proportion of it is sold as fresh, frozen or smoked in the Canadian market. What we require to increase this business is better transportation facilities, cheaper freight and express rates, and a government that is ready and willing to assist the industry in every way possible.

When the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Cantley) was addressing the House recently he quoted some freight rates to show how Nova Scotia was discriminated against. Now I want to show the discrimination against our province in the way of express rates on fish as compared with similar rates in effect from the Pacific coast. The express rate on carloads of fish from Vancouver or Prince Rupert to Winnipeg is $3.59 per 100 pounds net weight. The distance from Vancouver is 1,465 miles and from Prince Rupert 1,785 miles. But the express rate from Halifax- I might say that this rate is practically the same from all other points in the province- to Winnipeg is $8.05 per 100 pounds gross

The Address-Mr. Short

weight, or $10.06 per 100 pounds net weight. This is a further discrimination against Nova Scotia. The carload and less than carload rates are based on the gross weight and 25 per cent is added for package and ice. The mileage from Halifax to Winnipeg is 1,993. This rate constitutes a difference of 146 per cent over the rate from Vancouver and Prince Rupert to the same point. Do you wonder, Sir, that we are discontented when we realize the unfair way in which we are treated in transportation matters? Let me quote another comparison. The express rate from Vancouver or Prince Rupert to Chicago is $3.93 per 100 pounds net weight. The distance from Vancouver to Chicago is 3,224 miles, and from Prtince Rupert, 3,595 miles. The express rate from Halifax and other points in Nova Scotia to Chicago is $4.30 per 100 pounds (gross weight, and $5.37 per 100 pounds net weight. The distance from Halifax to Chicago is only 1,669 miles. The difference against us there in favour of the Pacific coast is only 195 per cent I Do you think, Sir, that we can prosper with such unjust discrimination against us in express rates on our fish? And this discrimination goes on all down the line, it applies on our shipments to Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia. For instance, the percentage against us to Boston compared with the Pacific coast rate is 325 per cent. How can we ever expect to build up'an industry in the Maritime provinces in the face of such discrimination?

Off the coast of Nova Scotia we have the greatest fisheries in the world. Our ports are so much nearer the fishing banks than those of the United States that we may reasonably look forward to the time when the fishing ports of Nova Scotia will be the bases from which vessels will operate and supply the fish markets of this country as soon as the government gives us the assistance that our industry is entitled to. The total value of the fisheries of Canada for 1924 was $44,534,235. Of this amount our exports represented $30,925,769, the balance of $13,608,466 being the value of the fish sold in Canada; in other words, as I have just stated, 30 per cent of the total value of our fish production found a sale in the home market. If we could increase domestic consumption to 50 per cent of our total production, it would stabilize the industry wonderfully, as there is no market like the home market. This increase would take place if the government would help develop our fisheries as it should. But, Mr. Speaker, very little attention has been given to our fishing industry by the government of the Dominion. One of the reasons for this comparative neglect is, I think, that usually the Minister of the Department of Marine and Fisheries has been selected from one of the inland provinces. As a rule such a man is not conversant with the needs and requirements of our fishing industry. I have always felt that the department should be presided over by a minister from the Maritime provinces, preferably Nova Scotia. Do you know, Sir, that Nova Scotia has not had a minister in that department for some thirty years? I think Sir Hibbert Tupper was the last member from Nova Scotia to preside over the Department of Marine and Fisheries, and that must be thirty years ago, or more. A man from the Maritime provinces is naturally familiar with all the local facts of the industry. I have no fault to find with the present minister (Mr. Cardin) but I understand he is a lawyer from the province of Quebec, and therefore he could not be supposed to have very much knowledge of the fishing industry.

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LIB

James Alexander Robb (Minister of Trade and Commerce; Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ROBB:

If my hon. friend1 will allow

me-does he not recall that Sir Douglas Hazen, a lawyer from New Brunswick, was Minister of Marine and Fisheries for many years?

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CON

Harry Bernard Short

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SHORT:

I have not any fault to

find there-but he was another lawyer. I claim that the department should be presided over by a man who has some knowledge of both the marine and the fisheries end. I think that is only logical. We would not expect a clergyman or a lawyer to know the different kinds of fish or what the requirements of the industry were.

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LIB

Alfred Stork

Liberal

Mr. STORK:

The hon. member has given certain comparisons of express charges from the Pacific coast and from Nova Scotia, claiming unfair discrimination in favour of British Columbia, May I ask from what authority he is quoting his figures?

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CON

Harry Bernard Short

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SHORT:

You will find all those rates on file with the Board of Railway Commissioners. I want to put on Hansard a little of the earlier history and also of the .present history of the fisheries of Canada. About no industry, not even the fur trade, is the early history of Canada, and for that matter of the North American continent, so closely entwined as about the fisheries. Indeed a study of the development of the fisheries of the world involves in a large measure the history of man. How and when fishing began we can only conjecture, but our earliest records indicate that fish formed an important portion

The Address-Mr. Short

of the good of man in the very early days. The application of the net to fishing is older than recorded1 history, so that we have no knowledge of who invented it. It seems quite probable that it was the spidter's web anchored in the air to catch passing flies that first suggested to reasoning man the application of a similar method for the capture of free swimming fish. Fishing even with gill-nets and seines was a common method of making a living in the days of our Saviour and it was from amongst the fishermen of Galilee that He drew several of His most notable apostles.

It is an old truism that from the earliest days fishing has been the parent of navigation and the mother of commerce. Fishing was first confined to the inland waters and the estuaries of streams, but it was early learned that fish dried in the sun and air will keep for any length of time and could be transported to distances from the coast. It was this fact that gave a tremendous impetus to fishing and to navigation. To supply the growing demand fishermen went farther and farther from the shore, to do which better boats were needed, and these were supplied. So that as early as the 12.th century hardy fishermen from around the bay of Biscay and Norway were voyaging yearly as far eastward as Iceland, and tradition leaves little room for doubt that long before Columbus discovered America these fishermen were visiting the coasts of what are now Canada and Newfoundland for fish. In any event one of the first things that followed the discovery of North America by the Cabots was the establishment of an important fishery there. Each year vessels from France, Spain and other European countries came across in the spring to the rich fishing grounds off our coasts and left in the fall loaded with their dried fish. The first exports from what are now the New England States were dried fish and it may safely be said that the trade and commerce of that whole region was founded on fish.

Our sea fisheries may be broadly cast into two divisions, the inshore and the bank fisheries. The former is engaged in by the fishermen living all along the coast, who operate in boats, and fish anywhere from ten to twelve miles from shore and the latter by vessels. The catches of the inshore fishermen and of the steam trawlers operating on the banks go to supply the fresh fish markets, as well as those for cured fish, while the banking vessels' catches are practically Ml cured for foreign markets. Important as it is that our offshore fisheries should be developed! and expanded, it is for obvious reasons more important from a national stand-

[Mr Short.]

point that our inshore fisheries should grow. To enable this to be done, however, it is essential that the demand for fish in our own country should be continuously increased.

The difficulties in the way are numerous and great. Our country is one of vast distances and comparatively small and scattered population. Our first large centre of consumption, Montreal, is about a thousand miles from the seaboard. Extremes in climate prevail, which necessitate adequate and1 rather expensive facilities for transporting fresh and frozen fish.

The asset Canada has in her fisheries is as a general thing far too little appreciated. Practically every mile of her coastal fisheries on both sides abound in different varieties of food fish of first quality. In addition to the Canadian waters of the Great Lakes there are a vast number of wonderfully productive areas such as lake Winnipeg, lake Winnipegosis and Lesser Slave lake, which cover an area of over 220,000 square miles. Not being very familiar, however, with our inland and Pacific coast fisheries I shall confine myself to the Atlantic coast. In addition to the gulf of lSt. Lawrence, which is potentially one of the richest fishing areas in the world, the various fishing baniks on this side of itJhe Atlantic are adjacent to the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia. Such names as the Georges, Brown's Bank, Roseway, LaHave, Sable Island, Banquereau, Misaine, St. Pierre and the Grand Banks are amongst the most productive fishing areas the world has known. Owing to their proximity to our Canadian ports fishing thereon can be carried on more economically from such ports than from any others. For instance the distance from Canso to Sable island bank is 88 miles and from Halifax it is only 159 miles, while from Boston it is 470 miles. Again the distance from Halifax to the centre of the Grand Banks is 588 miles while from Boston it is 928. It will be realized that a vessel operating from a Nova Scotia port, particularly when engaging in fishing for the fresh fish trade, can .produce much more fish in the same time owing to the shortness of her voyages to and from the fishing grounds.

Now, we have heard a great deal in this debate about rural credits for farmers in the west. What about extending the same credits and on the same terms to the farmers of the sea? I refer to the hardy fishermen of this country of ours. Why are they not entitled to the same consideration in the way of government credits as is given to the farmers of the west, so that they may be permitted to build boats and buy engines and equipment, in order to carry on their vocation and earn

The Address-Mr. Short

an honest living for themselves and their families? The fisherman is just as much in need of assistance of this kind as is the farmer of western Canada, and if the government decide that any system of credit is to be given to the farmers, of the west I hope and trust that they will also make the necessary arrangements so that the fishermen of our country may participate in these same credits.

A great deal has been said about the prosperity of our country, and the hon. member for Queens-Lunenburg has stated that Nova Scotia is prosperous. That may refer to the county of Lunenburg where they depend for good or bad times upon the fishing industry almost wholly, and where the fishermen were fortunate enough to have a good catch the past season and receive for that catch a very high price, much higher than they at first anticipated. 'I am sorry the hon. member for Queens-Lunenburg is not in his seat, because I would have liked him to hear the remarks I am going to make. The Lunenburg fishermen are the greatest traders there are in the province of Nova Scotia, and they always get the highest price because they produce the class of fish that is required by certain markets. These fish are mostly sold in Lunenburg under the co-operative plan, and the fishermen are traders enough to realize the fact that the dealer has got to come to them and pay them their price, unless they are forced to sell. The price of the Lunenburg catch this year started at $6 per quintal, but the Lunenburg fishermen decided not to take that price and held on until the dealers paid them $8 per quintal. It is said the dealers who bought at this price are not going to receive a new dollar for the old one, but be that as it may I am glad1 the fishermen got their price.

But, Mr. Speaker, Lunenburg is not the only county in Nova Scotia. I can quite understand that there is prosperity there, but there are other sections of the province that are not prosperous-in fact, that are now and have been for some time past suffering from depression, and there is a great deal of dissatisfaction and discontent in the province of Nova Scotia. Why, Mr. Speaker, if Nova Scotia were in the prosperous condition that the hon. member for Queens-Lunenburg would have this House believe, and if the government had dealt generously and fairly with that province, why was there such a change in the minds of the people of Nova Scotia from 1921, when they sent 'a solid sixteen for the King administration, and on October the 29th last only three of them survived? This, I think, is conclusive evidence 14011-90

that the people of Nova Scotia were more than dissatisfied with the late government, who during the four years of their administration neglected this part of the country in a most shameful manner, and the first opportunity the people had to record their votes at the polls they did not hesitate to show this government what they thought of them.

Topic:   GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH
Subtopic:   ADDRESS IN REPLY
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March 1, 1926