April 23, 1926

CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

Like the Prime Minister.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

I quote in this

connection a few words from the Automobile Trade Journal. It is published by the MacLean Publishing Company.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Edmond Baird Ryckman

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. RYCKMAN:

Why not give the name *of the other publication?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Order.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

A copy of the

publication was sent to every member of this House. It was full of pleas for the. retention of protection. They give the figures showing the increased cost of automobiles. Permit me to read briefly from their editorial :

We have before us comparative prices upon one line. While the parent concern operates in Detroit there is an extensive Canadian plant, and in the "Canadian Automotive Trade" has been shown a comparison of the American list price and the Canadian list price. We will take one line in particular. In the touring model the increase in the Canadian list price is 36.87 per cent; in the roadster, 37.08 per cent; in the sedan, 37.19 per cent.

In a higher priced line the increase of the Canadian list price over the American list price is as follows: in the phaeton, 33.33 per cent; the roadster, 39.69 per cent; the sedan 34.22 per cent; the brougham, 34.32 per cent; the coupe, 34.26 per cent; the coach 34.60 per cent.

Interesting, isn't it? The increase all round is a little over 35 per cent-strange numerical coincidence, the tariff also is 35 per cent. But I want to read further, and to stress this item. I hope that my hon. friend from Fort William (Mr. Manion) who quoted with such fervour the statement in Molesworth's Fiscal Facts and Fallacies that tariffs did not raise prices, will take this message to heart. The editorial goes on to say:

It is very clear that there is scant advantage of the Canadian protective duty taken here, and we have no doubt Canadian manufacturers generally can show equally forcible statistics.

Note the words, "equally forcible;" that is, equally capable of forcing 35 per cent additional out of the pockets of the Canadian people. We have now reached the point of frank admission by practical men that tariffs do increase prices. Against that may be set the remarks of a theorist like the hon. member for Fort William, who tells us the exact opposite. We may leave it at that, and the public and this House will judge rightly in regard to these contentions.

Now, I want to make myself perfectly clear upon one point. We on this side of the House are anxious to build up the industries of Canada. We are just as anxious-I will not say more anxious-than hon. gentlemen opposite to do so. We hold that these industries would be vastly expanded and enlarged, not by more tariff but by less. Sometimes we are challenged to state if we are absolute free traders. I will answer that question when hon. gentlemen opposite tell us if they are absolute exclusionists? We differ as to what constitutes "adequate protection."

In my humble judgment-and I intend to give reasons for the faith that is in me- the tariff upon automobiles is far too high, and industry generally, including the automobile industry, will profit, and profit greatly, from the lowering of the tariff on automobiles and the other reductions in the budget this year. Let me give a few examples. The tariff on automobiles is as you know 35 per cent. We imported into Canada of dutiable goods during the first nine months of the fiscal year $430,000,000, on which the duties collected were $106,000,000, or roughly 24 per cent. The tariff on agricultural implements runs from free to 20 per cent; on cottons it averages on all imports of dutiable goods 2S: per cent; on woollens 23 per cent; on boots

The Budget-Mr. Ross (Moose Jaw)

and shoes under the British preference 171 per cent. Why should automobiles be favoured with 35 per cent? May I point out that there is justification for the argument that the duty on autos should be lower than on cottons and woollens? We import very few autos from France, Italy and Germany; in the main they come from the United States. Cottons and woollens do come from these protectionist low wage countries. We have heard the plea of low wages in other countries. It seems to me that automobile manufacturers, not having to compete with the low wage production of continental Europe but rather with the high wage rates existing in the United States, need less and not more protection than the textile industry.

But there is one thing that is supremely British about our manufacturers. It is not their courage-they are far from being courageous; it is not their faith in Canada-barring only the leader of the opposition (Mr. Meighen) and the Tory party out of office. No single section of the community ever exhibits such evidence of the blues 1 But they have one British conception-what they have they hold. Give them a toe-hold and they will worm in their whole bodies. They are like cats; let their head but get into a rat-hole and their whole anatomy will follow. Give them the right to exclude some goods to their own aggrandizement and they would exclude all. Yes1 What they have they hold, yet by the eternal they ask for more!

Was ever, in all the history of parliamentary institutions, such a spectacle presented as that which we have recently witnessed] in this House? The net earnings of the Ford Motor Company of Canada last year were $6,131,352; the original cash investment on which that earning was built up was $63,500. Their "net" on a capital of $7,000,000-and that capital built up out of earnings-was 82.73 per cent. The people of Canada built the Ford Motor Company of Canada; they paid for it out of their own hard earnings, yet Ford owns it. The net gain to him from his investment in this Canadian enterprise was $21,000,000. Yet, their pockets bulging with wealth, their coffers crammed, scattering out melons right and left to their American shareholders, their representative comes suppliantly before this House, and asks that these things shall continue. Meanwhile Mr. Ford himself tells us the industry would profit even by absolute free trade. I want to tell you that lower tariffs will not hurt this giant industry. I want it to prosper, I want it to prosper as the agricultural implement industry has prospered under lower tariffs.

Hon. gentlemen opposite may differ from me in regard to this. For my part I am going to discuss realities; we members from the province of Saskatchewan have long since ceased to live in a land of dreams and nightmares. I am going to make particular reference to one item-binders. If my hon. friends are anxious to do so, we shall be delighted to follow them into further fields. The figures are:

Imports of binders, Fiscal year-

1914 3.770

1920 1,661

1921 3.485

1922 1,316

1923 1,606

1924 3,332

1925 1,091

I am trying to face these figures fairly. I have left out the war years and the. post-war years as too much disturbed to indicate real conditions. What do we find under these conditions? In no single year since the Liberal tariff came into force have we imported as many binders into Canada as we did in theplacid, peaceful pre-war year, 1914. " Oh,"

I hear you say, " this tariff has not been long in effect, wait and see." There is something tragic in Toryism, always looking forward to a day of gloom. I have cheering news for you. In the first nine months of this fiscal year we brought into this country-and they are nearly all imported in the first nine months of every fiscal year-only 1,865 binders. That is more than last year, but not much more than half the number imported in 1923 before the tariff was reduced.

May I mention mowers also. The hon. member for South Wellington (Mr. Guthrie) was alarmed about the imports of mowers. He told us of thousands leaving their native land because of the imports of mowers. Well, here are the figures-in each case they are for the first nine months of the fiscal year:

1923

531 nine months ending December1924

390 nine months ending December1925

286 nine months ending December

These are facts taken from our trade reports. I set them up against the dreams-nay more, the hopes-of hon. gentlemen opposite. They were anxious that imports might increase and an industry or two fail so as to give point to their arguments. We must realize the facts: tariffs do not keep goods out, tariffs only make goods dear.

Meanwhile, what has happened to the Massey-Harris Company, our largest manufacturer of farm implements? The figures are:

1921 Loss $1,456,0001922 " 643,0001923

" 409,5781924 Profit 87,0001925

" 1,411,1742760 COMMONS

The Budget-Mr. Ross (Moose Jaw)

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

Is the hon. gentleman

aware that much of our implement production now comes in in parts because of the reduction in the tariff? They are merely assembled here, which gives a profit to the manufacturer but takes away the jobs of the men.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

I know that is done in the motor industry, but I do not know about the implement industry.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

And it will be done to a greater extent in the automobile industry under this budget.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

It is facts like these-and the industrial history of Canada is full of them-which should cause hon. gentlemen opposite to change their ways. Why will they not recognize the facts? Why will they not now, at this late date, admit their error and say: " We have sinned; we have failed to recognize the industrial needs of this great country. It is not a tariff ' adequately high ' that is needed for industrial development: it is one sufficiently low"? Will they do it? Well, listen to their wail when the tariff on agricultural implements was lowered. Here are the words of the right hon. leader of the opposition in his address on the budget in 1924:

There never was a more violent assault on stability in the last thirty years than there is in this budget, nor has the effect of that assault ever been more immediate and more apparent.

That sounds rough, doesn't it? But that is nothing. Hon. gentlemen opposite have wept so copiously since October 29 that the source of their tears has all but dried up. The tears and wails of to-day sound like the sighing of the soft sea waves compared to the outburst when the British preference was first introduced in 1897. Listen to this from Sir Charles Tupper, the war horse of Cumberland-

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Sidney Cecil Robinson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ROBINSON:

Will the hon. gentleman say who wrote his speech for him?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

Thomas McMillan

Liberal

Mr. McMILLAN:

Not the Tory treadmill upstairs, anyway.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

Although I do not believe I have any very great ability, I am pleased to say that I am responsible for this speech.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Henry Alfred Mullins

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MULLINS:

Would the hon. gentleman permit a question?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Order.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Order.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

I will do as the hon. member for Toronto East Centre

(Mr. Bristol) did the other day; I do not want to be interrupted. Here are the words of Sir Charles Tupper, the war horse of Cumberland:

I confess, Sir, that I listened with the most profound astonishment to the speech delivered by the hon. Minister of Finance (Mr. Fielding). '

And to-day the hon. member for East Algoma (Mr. Nicholson) patted Mr. Fielding on the back for that budget. But here is what Sir Charles Tupper had to say:

I did not suppose it possible, whether in one section of the empire or another, for a great parliament such as that which the Dominion of Canada possess, to have presented for its consideration a bill of such entirely illegal and unconstitutional character. I have no hesitation in saying you will search the history of parliamentary government throughout the British Empire in vain to find any parallel for the position in which we find ourselves in relation to the budget speech of the ^on. Minister of Finance.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

Ernest Lapointe (Secretary of State of Canada; Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

Same language to-day.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

Will the hon. gentleman permit a question, or does he still not hear? Is he not aware that that speech was made with reference to a budget which, finally, never went into effect?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

John Gordon Ross

Liberal

Mr. ROSS (Moose Jaw):

Mr. Speaker, there is another leader of the opposition misquoted. Sir Charles Tupper went on to say:

I listened to this most remarkable address with the most profound astonishment because it violated the most plain, clearly understood and well-known laws governing the parliament of Canada. It was in antagonism with the constitution of the country and in violation of everything that hon. gentlemen on either side of the House had a right to expect from the Minister of Finance.

At six o'clock the House took recess.

After Recess

The House resumed at eight o'clock.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink

PRIVATE BILLS

April 23, 1926