March 8, 1928

CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

When I first came into this house the condition I found was that the people of the east were not entirely familiar with the situation which existed in British Columbia. I found that Conservative members as well as Liberal members for British Columbia had been endeavouring to impress upon the house the seriousness of the situation which then existed. I think the minister will agree that it was necessary for British Columbia members to do a considerable amount of missionary work and they did that

to the best of their ability. When I first came into this house at the time of the Union government, some other questions of importance were taking up the attention of the government.

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?

John Warwick King

Mr. KING (Kootenay):

What about the period from 1911 to 1914?

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CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

Perhaps the minister

has forgotten about it, but at that time a war was in progress and I do not think the minister would suggest that, during a war such as we had on our hands then, it would have been good policy for any member from British Columbia to get up in this house and move an exclusion resolution.

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?

John Warwick King

Mr. KING (Kootenay):

If the hon. member will read my speech he will see that I made that exception, and I suggested that between 1911 and 1914 and between 1918 and 1921 the hon. member's party had an opportunity of doing something.

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CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

I do not believe in

going back into the past. I do not think any more credit is due in the past to the Conservative party in the Dominion house than to the Liberal party in reference to this question, and I do not think so far as that goes, you can find any Liberal member from British Columbia-except the minister himself who, of course, is in a very peculiar position-who is not in favour of exclusion of orientals. I have no doubt when the minister gets out on the hustings he tells the people of my province that he is in favour of a white British Columbia.

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?

John Warwick King

Mr. KING (Kootenay):

My action will

always be that followed consistently by the Liberal party. They have always been progressive.

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CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

What has happened?

The orientals, particularly the Japanese, have been coming into British Columbia and they have been increasing at such a rate that the oriental question is the livest issue in the politics of that province. I find in a return, which was brought down at the request of the hon. member for Comox-Alberni (Mr. Neill) that in 1927 there were ninety-four Chinese admitted into Canada under permit, and of these forty entered as actors and actresses, four as missionaries and three as teachers. Thirty-five of the ninety-four have already left the country. In the same year, 493 Japanese entered Canada, of whom 118 were adult males, 277 adult females and 98 children. So we see they are still coming in, although the Prime Minister has stated that there are already too many orientals in British Columbia.

The Budget-Mr. McQuarrie

The Attorney General of British Columbia has been very active in regard to this oriental question. I have read in the press that discussions are going on from time to time in the provincial legislature in reference to this subject, and I have in my hand the Vancouver Daily Province of Thursday, March 1, 1928, which makes this statement-I am not going to read it all, but I will give the house a short extract. The article is dated at Victoria, March 1, and reads:

Members of the legislature, without regard to party, were invited by Attorney General Manson, Wednesday, to meet him informally and draft a resolution appealing to the parliament of Canada to halt oriental penetration into British Columbia.

To halt it, if you like:

This unexpected invitation, following the commencement of debate on the whole oriental situation, which interpreted as the government's answer to Conservative demands for oriental exclusion and the abrogation of the Canadian-Japanese treaty. What attitude the government will take in the framing of a nonpolitical resolution on the oriental problem was not indicated definitely by the attorney general, but in a carefully-worded speech he urged the house not to embarrass the Canadian government and the British government in dealing with Asiatic peoples. He would propose a resolution, he said, -which would seek to avoid any offence to the sensibilities of oriental nations, at the same time protecting the rights of British Columbia.

This sudden new turn was given to the oriental debate after C. F. Davie, Conservative of Cowichan-Newcastle, had moved his resolution calling for the abrogation of the Japanese treaty, and after W. F. Kennedy, Conservative of North Okanagan, had moved as an addition to this proposal, that the house favour the total exclusion of Asiatics from Canada.

It appears from statements that have been made in this debate that the situation in British Columbia has become most acute inasmuch as the orientals are getting into all lines of industry; they are going on to the farms and into the factories; their merchants are taking locations on the leading business streets in all the large cities and towns in British Columbia; they are entering into every walk of life in our country, and more than that, in British Columbia at the present time, according to Mr. Davie, out of every five adult males in the province one is an oriental. And still they are allowed to continue to come in. The attorney general has, as I say, been very active. He is asking for exclusion. The British Columbia legislature time after time has asked for exclusion and has also asked for the abrogation of the treaty between Great Britain and Japan which I think is known as the treaty of Commerce and Industry, which was entered into in 1911 and ratified by this house in 1913.

The attorney general brought up the matter at the Dominion-provincial conference which was held in Ottawa last fall, and according to the press of British Columbia, Mr. Manson pleaded for action by the Dominion government. I have here the report of that conference. Mr. Manson says that he made the representatives present at that conference sit up and take notice, that they were not aware of the real conditions until they had heard his speech. He says:

They expressed their astonishment when I told them that whereas the increase of our own children attending school in the last three years was only six per cent, the increase of Japanese children attending was seventy-four per cent in the same period. I told them that the time was coming when British Columbia would be nothing more than a British-Oriental community, and that they must expect the yellow races to cross the rockies and invade the provinces in the east as they had done on the coast. It is no use dealing with this problem by stabbing at it with resolutions; what we want is a solution on broad national lines!

In the report of the conference issued by this government I find a reference to the same subject, at page 37, as follows:

Mr. Manson dealt briefly with the oriental problem from the standpoint of his province and of the Dominion. He advised consideration of this by the federal government.

I find in the provincial report of the conference, published in the British Columbia Public Service Bulletin, a reference to the same subject. At page 163 it says:

A great many matters affecting this province were discussed at the interprovincial conference, or taken up with the federal ministers by Hon. Dr. MacLean and Hon. A. M. Manson, Attorney General, who accompanied him to Ottawa, including the need for firm action in regard to prohibition of oriental immigration.

I do not see much difference between prohibition and exclusion. It seems to me a very strange thing indeed that this government will not pay any attention to the representations which it receives from the government of the province of British Columbia, and it is also very strange that the Minister of Soldiers' Civil Re-establishment would give this house to understand that the people of British Columbia are satisfied with present conditions.

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?

John Warwick King

Mr. KING (Kootenay):

I have never said so.

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CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

There is another

strange anomaly to which I would call attention, and that is the attitude of the attorney general of British Columbia, a strong man of the Liberal party, in regard to oriental immigration. The other day in the Supreme Court of Canada, through his counsel, Mr. COMMONS

The Budget-Mr. McQuarrie

W. E. Williams, he contested the authority of the government in any way to restrict the issuance of licenses to orientals. The Minister of Soldiers' Civil Re-establishment may not be aware of that. He takes credit to this government for having done something in regard to the curtailment of the issuance of fishing licenses to orientals. I give them that credit also, but I would at the same time say that it was my privilege to move the resolution which resulted in the curtailment of such licenses. Licenses have been cut down very materially. There was a time when the orientals controlled the fisheries of British Columbia-absolutely controlled them-but now, owing to the action which has been taken, the orientals are not getting as many licenses as they would like to have, and the number of orientals in the industry has been materially reduced. What will happen if the contention of the attorney general of British Columbia is correct? It will mean that the regulations which have been passed are bad. It will mean that any oriental in British Columbia who is a British subject, and desires to do so, may obtain a license to fish. I have here extracts from the factum of Mr. Williams, counsel for the province of British Columbia.

Dealing first with the right to receive a license to fish, he said:

It is submitted that all subjects of the king, resident in Canada, have the right to fish in tidal Waters.

He goes on to cite the authorities, and then proceeds:

It is not yet quite clear that the capacity in parliament to regulate fisheries enables parliament in the case of tidal water fisheries (where the right is a public right) to abrogate the right.

And again the authorities are cited.

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CON

Grote Stirling

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STIRLING:

Who is Mr. Williams?

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CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

I believe he is a law

partner of the attorney general.

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?

John Warwick King

Mr. KING (Kootenay):

Was.

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CON

William Garland McQuarrie

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. McQUARRIE:

I notice in the last

Vancouver telephone directory the name of the firm Williams, Manson & Gonzales. However. I accept the statement of the minister that Mr. Williams is no longer the law partner of the attorney general, and in any event I do not comment upon that at all. He continues:

If parliament is "the competent legislature" to abrogate the public right of fishing, by first abrogating the right parliament could then confer a discretion upon the minister to refuse a license to fish, because the public would then have no rights in the matter beyond what parliament saw fit to give.

This course has not been adopted. The public right of fishing has not been abrogated. The right exists, and no discretion has been reposed in the minister to refuse a license to fish.

And he quotes section 45 of the Fisheries Act. He goes on:

It is submitted that all the regulations submitted in question 3 are ultra vires of section 45 of the Fisheries Act. Subsection (e) does not enable the minister to refuse a license where the right to fish exists. There is a duty upon the minister to issue the license to any applicant who has a right to fish.

So I say it seems to me that there is something wrong in the attitude both of the provincial government and the Dominion government in regard to oriental matters, because on the one hand we have the Dominion government refusing to keep out orientals, and on the other we have the provincial government ready to give orientals the right to fish in Canadian waters.

Now, Mr. Speaker, I wish to assure you that the attitude of the people of British Columbia towards orientals is not based upon any racial dislike or any failure to appreciate their good qualities, and when your honour goes to Tokyo as the first Canadian ambassador-for such is the rumour-I hope you will represent to the government and people of Japan that we have a great admiration for their nationals-provided of course they stay in their own country. I might mention other rumours that are circulating. We have heard, for instance, that the Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe) is to go to the supreme court bench; we have heard that the Solicitor General (Mr. Cannon) is to become Minister of Justice; we have heard that the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Motherwell) will consent to go to one place only-the Senate, and we have heard that the Minister of Immigration (Mr. Forke) is to go back to the farm. But to return to the oriental question. It is demanding the attention of students and scholars from one end of Canada to the other. Only the other day I read with considerable interest the report of a speech made by Sir Arthur Currie, president of McGill university. While he takes issue with the Conservative party on the use of the word "exclusion," yet all his arguments point conclusively to the necessity for an exclusion law. He said:

For the sake of the past and for the sake of the future, we are the people who must be the judges of the kind of civilization we hope to perpetuate in this land of ours.

I have under my hand a letter from Dean Brock of the university of British Columbia. Recently he attended a meeting of scientists in Japan at the invitation of the Japanese

The Budget-Mr. Langlois

government. To him was assigned the duty of speaking on the oriental question from the standpoint of Canada, and he told the conference very frankly the position which we take. Later on I heard him speak on this subject at a meeting of the Kiwanis Club in Vancouver, and I asked him if he would kindly give me a letter explaining exactly the Japanese stand in this regard. He wrote me under date of November 30, 1927. I cannot read the whole letter, but I will give the house those parts which are pertinent to the question:

The Japanese who attended the conference now recognize, and I think it may be taken for granted that their government will recognize-

1. That we have perfectly justified and satisfactory reasons for not wanting immigrants from Japan, and that these reasons are no reflection upon the honour of Japan or the qualities of the Japanese.

Recognizing the validity of these arguments, the leader of the Japanese in the discussion of this question, told me that they were very glad to have had this frank discussion; that they had not understood; that they now not only understood, but understood sympathetically, and that under similar circumstances the Japanese would take a similar position.

2. They recognize that emigration to America is no solution of their overpopulation problem, so there is no compelling reason for Japan to be interested in such emigration.

3. They have no desire for their nationals to go to a country where they are not wanted.

I would call the attention of the Prime Minister particularly to the fourth paragraph:

4. They have no objection to stopping emigration completely, if we want that.

Now, I ask, why has not the Prime Minister been able to make an agreement with Japan to stop absolutely the emigration of their nationals to Canada? Dean Brock says that if the Japanese were in the same position they would do exactly what we want done. That is borne out by an article that I read the other day in the Literary Digest for February 11, 1928. It is headed, "The Cry of 'Asia for the Asiatics'", and this paragraph will no doubt interest hon. members:

Domination of the orient by European and American forces is the reason given for the frequent raising of the cry: "Asia for the Asiatics", and it appears that the endeavour to unite the various peoples in Asia in a league to combat foreign influence reveals itself every so often in a Pan-Asiatic Congress. One such is recorded in the Calcutta Amrita Bazar Patrika as being held at Nantao, a suburb of Shanghai, and it is claimed that these meetings were attended by representatives from all Asiatic countries with the exception of the Philippines and Indo-China. Mr. Imasatu, who presided at the sessions, is said to have been "trained in the school of the late Count Okuma, whose life-long slogan was 'Asia for the Asiatics.' "

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And the article sets out the resolutions which were passed at the conference, including the following:

With a view to serve humanity, the conference recommends that Asia, the cradle of religions, should send out religious missions to Europe, America, Africa, Australia, and other countries to convert the people. The conference, recommends unity among Asiatic nations, so that they, by mutual co-operation, may defend themselves against imperial aggression.

With a view to improving the conditions of the Asiatic nations, the conference recommends better commercial relations among the different nations of Asia.

Now, if we went to Japan we would not be allowed the same privileges that the Japanese enjoy in this country. In passing, may I say that there seems to be no good reason in the world why we should have an exclusion law against the Chinese, of which the Minister of Soldiers' Civil Re-establishment is so proud, when we are afraid to pass a similar law against the Japanese.

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LIB

Aimé Langlois

Liberal

Mr. AIME LANGLOIS (Chambly-Ver-cheres) (Translation):

Mr. Speaker, I wish

to add my congratulations to those already conveyed to the government for the excellent results of their administration as expressed in the budget proposals of the hon. Minister of Finance (Mr. Robb).

He apprises us of the great improvement realized in the economic situation of our national railways, of an important decrease ia the country's debt, and of an appreciable reduction of the burden of taxes weighing on the Canadian ratepayers.

These results, clearly proved by statistics, have often been referred to in the house, during the course of this debate, so that I deem it useless to mention them again.

I am not far from the truth in stating that public opinion, generally speaking, is satisfied, and, I think that I am quite in order when submitting as evidence the approval of the Liberal press and a few Conservative newspapers, as for instance, the Ottawa Journal, the Gazette and the Montreal Star.

It is true that in connection with the reduction of taxation, our friends in the opposition delight in recalling that these taxes had been levied by the Liberals themselves. They, however, forget intentionally to mention that conditions in the country rendered these taxes necessary when the Liberals were recalled to power at the beginning of 1922. The last year of the Meighen administration, which comprised but nine months of the fiscal year, was liquidated by a deficit of more than $80,000,000. The previous year, the Meighen administration left a deficit of more than $90,000,000 to be

The Budget-Mr. Langlois

looked after. It was therefore evident that unless we allowed the deficits to accumulate, and destroy the confidence and credit of the country, we had to balance the budget and put in order a bad situation which had not been created by the Liberals.

It is therefore only fair to give due credit to the government for the relief given to tax payers by the lightening of their burden of taxes.

We must equally give it due credit for having dissipated forever the whisper of death which certain newspapers contended was hovering over the country.

During the last few years, each time the budget was brought down-the opposition foresaw the ruin of trade, industry and agriculture, because of the Liberal policy. It is interesting to compare these forecasts made in the house, especially during the course of the last two sessions, with the results which followed. It is a fact, Mr. Speaker, as mentioned in the budget speech, "that the annual statements, within the last years, of the leaders in finance and industry have revealed a great progress and a genuine prosperity in the country." The statistics in regard to our trade are most satisfactory. Our exports add up to more than a billion dollars, and our farming products are included in this for a very substantial amount. The figures showing our favourable balance of trade, compared to those of our population, place us in the front rank among the nations of the world. On the whole, our industries are also in an advantageous situation, and the daily reports of transactions on the stock exchange show up their steady progress.

The Canadian dollar, which for a time had depreciated to one-sixth and even one-fifth of its par value, has recovered its full purchasing power. Our trade treaties, which are often the object of attacks against the government, have nevertheless found for our products advantageous markets. It is a satisfaction to know that we have sold to the countries with which we have trade treaties for $79,000,000 more than we have purchased from them.

Not being able to deny the advantages of

our economic situation, those who are trying to take away all merit from the government attribute the improvement to the intervention of Providence. Perhaps, they might become sceptical if, owing to this intervention and taking them at their word, we were to proclaim it a miracle.

The same scepticism haunts them, when conditions are less favourable. They then

think no more of Providence but of the gov-

emment, which, to their eyes is the cause of all evils.

The truth is that if the government may bear a certain responsibility when conditions are bad, it must also be given due credit when conditions are good.

An attempt is also made to prove that everything is decidedly wrong, by stating that poverty reigns among the people. It was said, very long ago, by a supreme authority: "You will always have poor people among you." All the nations of the world have verified the truth of this prophecy, and we do not escape the common lot. But when the great American nation and its wealth are constantly pointed out to us as an example, it is well to recall that in that country also, notwithstanding her policy of high protection, the majority of the people do not know what wealth is, that a considerable number of people there have difficulty in meeting their obligations, that the condition of the farmer is not so favourable as that of the Canadian farmer, and that poverty is known there as elsewhere. It is interesting to read on this subject the article "Wages and Prosperity" which appeared in the Canadian Congress Journal of February, page 17. Those who intend to go and live in the United States would do well to read this article before crossing the border.

As a whole, we have reason to be satisfied with general conditions, and to have faith in the future: our banks are sound; those who are in a position to give employment, are willing to give work, and each day we witness new enterprises springing up.

It would be proper at this time to express the wish that our great financiers, our wealthy manufacturers-induced by the eloquent remarks just made by the hon. member for Labelle (Mr. Bourassa)-improve and raise the lot of the labourer. Our tariff is harmful to no enterprise. Our manufacturers can meet competition on the home market, and they compete advantageously on foreign markets. Our organizations are thus more sound and have a better chance of developing than if their success depended solely on government protection. In fact, owing to our small population, our home market is rather restricted. We produce more than we can consume, so that we need outside markets. I am opposed to the solution which consists in opening wider the gates of our country to immigration, under the plea of developing our home market. In this century of intensive production, the increase of our population will always be exceeded by production, and the same problems will remain unsolved.

The Budget-Mr. Langlois

It would, perhaps, be better to restrict immigration somewhat, at least for the time being, and close the doors of this country to labourers who come to Canadian cities to replace our workmen. This restriction should last until the need of labour is felt. Of course, I am in favour of the policy which tends to open up our virgin lands; it would be wise in this regard to grant Canadians and our people living in the United States, who wish to take up new lands and make their home in Canada', the same advantages we afford to immigrants coming from Europe. What we must demand of our immigrants is that they be sound physically and morally: quality is more important than quantity. This restriction would have the effect of decreasing our emigration to the neighbouring republic, as Canadians would then have a better opportunity of making a living here.

If we .placed any faith in the speeches of the opposition, we might, if we ignored history, be led to believe that the emigration of our people began under the present administration because the tariff had not been sufficiently increased. I was recently reading a pamphlet in which the author asserted that from 1880 to 1890, under the regime of the national policy of Sir John Macdonald, Canada had lost, through emigration to the United States, more than 850.000 people, and that, during the ten years of the Borden-Meighen administration, the floods of emigration had carried away 750,000 people; and that these figures had increased owing to the war, as stated yesterday by the hon. member for Beauharnois (Mr. Raymond).

When in 1919 this question was brought up in the house, the government then in power was not in a position to assure us that it had healed this wound by a high tariff, and through one of its ministers it gave this answer:

"Emigration to the United States is the result of the rapid expansion of industry and trade in the neighbouring republic and also of the numerous opportunities offered to youth to go into trade and business."

I can see there one of the reasons of the emigration of our people; I shall further add that the attraction of the American republic is increased by the fact that it is an independent nation, respectful of the freedom of its citizens, and animated by an ardent patriotism.

Canadian emigration started previous to the establishment of responsible government; the cause can be traced to the hardship of life and the lack of freedom in our country. It is therefore not proven that the protection . vaunted by the Conservatives has been a

56103-70J

sure remedy against emigration, or that the lowering of a few tariff duties by the Liberals has been one of the causes. The fiery speeches on emigration, far from bettering the situation, have but the effect of aggravating it-,

In the past, politics has too easily had recourse to the art of dividing in order to govern. Our racial contentions have prevented the growth of a Canadian spirit and weakened the ties which kept our people here. At the least reverse people prepared to leave this country where the respect due to every one was ignored, where one could not live happily.

It is more than time to definitely abandon this narrow path, where too long we have lingered. At 'this stage, it gives me infinite pleasure to warmly thank the present administration for having carried on the Liberal work of 1896, and for having contributed in a large measure to bringing about good feeling in this country, to fostering Canadian patriotism by further asserting the autonomy of this country, by obtaining for Canada as a nation a distinct representation at the League of Nations, and by inaugurating our diplomatic representation in other countries.

Rather than sing the praise of the neighbouring country, let us celebrate ours; let us rejoice at our economic progress and let us try to emphasize it by sound legislation and the co-operation of our

Scientific Research Council, which we should compose of our ablest minds, and tio which we could confide the task of discovering the possibilities of success in the various spheres of life, thus facilitating the formation of new and Canadian enterprises for the general expansion and particularly rational development of our natural resources and industries connected with agriculture.

Let us not lend a deaf ear to the

recriminations constantly coming from all parts of the country against the burden of taxation which weighs on us. These recriminations, while reminding us of errors of the past, implicitly tell us that more and more our policy must rest on" the exclusive interests of our country.

Mr. Speaker, a state is not only a system composed of material interests; it must moreover possess a background of common thoughts. This background of common thoughts, I would wish it to be inspired by the love of Canada and consideration for the freedom and morality of the citizen and regard for his character and personality.

On that score, I am thankful to the government for what it has accomplished in the past

The Budget-Mr. Maloney

and I have faith in what it can do in the future; and that is why I willingly give it my support.

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CON

Martin James Maloney

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. M. J. MALONEY (South Renfrew):

I have listened for some weeks to numerous hon. gentlemen in this house discussing, with great eloquence and wonderful intelligence, the possibilities of our country. I have heard with patience, but more often with pleasure, several of my hon. friends, each with his own tale to tell, with regard to conditions as they affect the different portions of our Dominion. And I have come to the conclusion that Canada is indeed a difficult country to govern and that under ordinary circumstances the government of the day deserves commiseration rather than condemnation. If this government had really shown any effort to ameliorate conditions as they affect injuriously the great masses of our population, I for one at least "Should feel that it deserved our pity rather than our censure. But unfortunately one cannot sympathize with this government because-I at any rate am forced to this conclusion-it is not entitled to the pity of any citizen of the Dominion of Canada.

It is true a budget was presented to this house some weeks ago; it is true that the Minister of Finance (Mr. Robb) in presenting that budget spoke in millions. Nothing was too small for the minister in dealing with the finances of the country, and in a half apologetic way he claimed' prosperity for Canada. Those of us, however, who sit face to face with the Minister of Finance, and who saw that far-away look on his face, were struck by the fact that he was looking out beyond the financial institutions of Canada, which institutions he invoked to prove his argument that Canada was prosperous. He was looking beyond the large banks and insurance companies and other financial corporations in the Dominion, looking out among the common people. He was looking to the labourers, the farmers and the merchants of Canada and the rest of the other 95 per cent of the people who make up the population and who are not benefited by this budget. For these he had no cure. He would say to the farmer, to the labourer, to the miner, to the merchant, "Look at the prosperous condition of our great banks." But these other people are. not interested in this prosperity; what interests the labourer in this country is the answer to this question: "Where am I going to get a day's work with a decent day's pay?" The farmer is not interested in the millions of dollars the insurance companies and the banks are wringing out of the people of this country: he wants to know

\fr. T-anclois 1

where he is going to get the money to pay the interest on the mortgage on his farm. The answer of the minister to all these men would be, "Gentlemen, I have no hope of bettering your condition financially. The only advice I have to offer you is to work; keep on working; work hard; save; be thrifty, and' do not spend a dollar on the pleasures of life. In that way you will drag along all right." That is his answer to- the 95 per cent of our population who are not affected beneficially by this budget. Go into the street in any section of this Dominion of Canada and talk to the average citizen, wherever you meet him. As I have said, he is not interested in the prosperity of the banks and our other big institutions; he wants to know where he is going to get work and what pay he can get for that work. Go to the miner; he is not interested in this prosperity. He would ask the Minister of Finance, "What have you done to protect the industry which is supporting myself and my family?" The minister could only answer, " I have done nothing. I advise you to work; keep on working and do not spend a cent." This is a sad picture, but it is_ true.

There is one thing about this budget; it has not been boomed as have recent budgets presented by this government, for the simple reason that it is a shifting budget, one which wobbles and states nothing definitely. It shows the wavering attitude of the government; it shows their fear and demonstrates that they have not the courage to grapple with the tremendous problems which confront the people of this country to-day. The minister claims that during the last four years his government have reduced the debt of Canada by 8100,000,000, but he knows that during that same period our railway obligations amounted to much more than that sum, and he knows full well that those^ railway obligations are a black mark against the credit of Canada just as surely as any victory bond outstanding to-day.

The minister claims that this year he will reduce taxation to the extent of $19,000,000, but in an earlier paragraph in his budget speech he comes out boldly and tells the people of Canada that he expects to squeeze $10,500,000 more out of them this year than he did last year. This is the reduction in taxation. From whom is he going to squeeze this $10,500,000? Is he going to take it from those best able to pay? Is it going to come from the rich men of this country, from those drawing salaries or having incomes of $4,000, $5,000, $6,000, $8,000, or $100,000 a year? No; he knows very well that these are men of influence. Any man drawing a salary of

The Budget-Mr. Maloney

from $5,000 to $20,000 a year is usually a man of considerable influence in his own locality; the minister realizes that that influence may be required some day on behalf of himself or his associates, and he feels that he should get in strong with those men at present. He does so to the extent of reducing their burden by 10 per cent, so far as the income tax is concerned; he removes 10 per cent from the tax of the man who is able to pay it and shoves that additional burden on the shoulders of the man who is earning $2 a day and struggling to support his family.

The government claim to have reduced the sales tax, and they have reduced it. They have brought it back to where they found it in 1922, but in that very reduction they have again penalized the poor man as compared with the rich man. The hon. member for East Essex (Mr. Odette), in his speech a few days ago truly said that by virtue of this reduction of one per cent in the sales tax a man buying an automobile valued at $1,000 saved a ten dollar bill. That is quite true, but the hon. member forgot to bring joy to the heart of the labourer, the man earning $2 or $2.50 a day and endeavouring to support his family on that huge salary, by telling him that the next time he bought a pair of shoes for his little boy at a cost of $2 he would save two cents. If this man forgot to be thrifty for a while and became reckless enough to purchase a $5 suit of clothes * for his little boy, he would save five cents. That is the reduction in the sales tax. If we must have a sales tax, Mr. Speaker, and if it is the desire of this government to maintain that tax, why not exempt boots and shoes and articles of wearing apparel? Such things as automobiles are not necessities of life; for the immense majority of the citizens of this country an automobile is a luxury, but clothing is an absolute essential. If this government are anxious to aid those who are feeling the pinch to-day they could do so very easily by removing the sales tax altogether from articles of wearing apparel, but* have no hope that this government will do so.

I am sure the trade conditions of this country are causing the government of the day some anxiety; trade figures are not quite so pleasant to read as they were a few years ago. The Minister of Finance told us the other day that in the first nine months of the present fiscal year our exports decreased by $28,000,000, and to make matters worse we were informed that our imports had increased by $56,000,000. If this continues the day is coming when Canada will be buying

more than she sells, and we all know what happens to any man who spends more than he earns. That is the position in which Canada will some day find herself. I ask why such a condition should be present in this country, where we have tremendous natural resources which are capable of supplying not only our own needs but the requirements of foreign countries as well. Why should we be required to import goods which we can produce here in Canada?-it is an unfortunate thing that a large percentage of the importations into Canada are agricultural products and other foodstuffs. I do not attribute that at all to the Minister of Trade and Commerce. I believe him to be a most competent man, a sincere man, a man who is making every effort for the benefit of Canada, but he is hampered by those with whom he is associated. I believe that if the minister could act in accordance with the promptings of his own mind he would introduce a fiscal system in Canada which would abolish the condition of which I spoke a moment ago. He would bring in a fiscal system which would mean stability for our industries throughout Canada from the Atlantic to the Pacific. To-day he has protectionists on one side of him and anti-protectionists on the other, while in front of him are those who are neither protectionists nor anti-protectionists. Therefore he is hampered in his acts, and the only policy he can evolve to-day is one which contains a free trade wink for the west and a protectionist nod for the great province of Quebec.

It is true that our balance of trade is still on the right side to the extent of some millions of dollars, but it is unfortunate that that favourable balance of trade is created by virtue of the fact that we are exporting our raw materials. It is a deplorable thing that we are shipping out of Canada to be manufactured in foreign countries raw products, which should be turned into finished articles in this Dominion. Why should we allow our products to leave Canada in a raw state? We have citizens who are as intelligent as the citizens of any other land. We have artisans who are as expert and ingenious as those of any other country. Why is it then that, we can not convert these raw materials into completely finished products in our own country? Some will say it is due to lack of capital. But in this country there are millions and millions of dollars lying idle, and outside of Canada there are billions of dollars awaiting a favourable opportunity for investment. Why can we not secure this rponey for the development of the resources of Canada? There is one reason, and one reason

The Budget-Mr. Maloney

only, and it is that the investor is afraid of the government we have. We have an unstable government, we have a group government, we have a government that will afford no protection of any kind to the man who is prepared to invest his money in developing our natural resources.

The tariff changes in the 'budget are insignificant, and I shall deal briefly with only one item, that which affects the woollen industry. I proclaim boldly that by the reduction of the duty on yarns coming into Canada, the Minister of Finance and the government are ruining the sheep growing industry in this country. Not only are they doing that but they are putting the spinning industry out of business. Furthermore, the weaving industry, an industry supposed to be benefited by this item in the tariff, will eventually be injured, because there is nothing in the wide world to prevent any private citizen supplied with yarn emanating from sweatshops in foreign countries from setting up a little plant of his own in opposition to an established Canadian industry. So even the industry referred to will eventually be injured by this tariff change. The county of Renfrew, part of which I have the honour to represent here, is admirably adapted to the growing of sheep, and the farmers of that section were hoping, as the years went by, to engage more actively in that industry. To-day the growing of wool, a most important operation, has been effectively killed by this government, and it passes my comprehension how any farmer in this house, no matter what his political affiliations may be, can stand up and defend the lowering of the duty on wool coming into Canada. This is a matter which the farmers of Canada, from one end of the country to the other, will watch very closely indeed. In addition to the wool grower and the sipinning industry, there are other industries identified with the manufacture of wool. Despite what has been said by hon. gentlemen opposite to the effect that the industry has not been injuriously affected by any tariff changes, I wish to say that in the Ottawa valley at least five woollen factories have been closed down. The closing down of these five factories is undoubtedly due to tariff changes which have been brought into effect from time to time by the present administration.

All the departments of government have been under review during the last few weeks. The Post Office department has received special attention from several speakers who have preceded me, and it is in connection with some of the officers of that great department that I should like to speak for a moment. Reference has been made to post-

masters. They are an outstanding body of men, usually leaders in their own community, who are appointed because of their honesty and probity. These men-apart from those in the cities and larger towns-draw their salaries, as hon. gentlemen know, by way of commission from the revenues of the office. During the war, and for some time afterwards, the revenue of nearly every post office in the country was greatly increased because the ordinary postage stamp was employed where war tax stamps were necessary. Shortly after the conclusion of the war, for what reason I do not know, the government altered this condition. They made a change prohibiting the use of the postage stamp on cheques, or wherever a war tax stamp was required. That meant a huge reduction in the revenue of the various post offices and a consequent great diminution in the salaries of the postmasters, and this at a time when all civil servants were enjoying increases in salary. Then again, the present Postmaster General (Mr. Veniot) issued an unfair proclamation which declared that the box rents in villages and small towns would be in most cases doubled. What does that mean? It means that if you reside in a village or small town there is no letter delivery system you have to walk to the post office and pay twice the amount you formerly did for the post office box containing your mail, whereas in the large centres the mail matter is delivered absolutely free. It is true that this action raised the postal revenue somewhat and to a slight extent bettered the position of the postmasters. Now did the Postmaster General do anything further for that deserving class for whom I am pleading? He did. He guillotined politically 421 of them, and to that extent relieved the unemployment situation among his own political friends. Taking all the circumstances into consideration, the position of a postmaster in Canada to-day is not a desirable one, and if the Postmaster General continues the dismissal of this class of employee he will eventually find difficulty in getting men qualified to fill these positions.

The mail carriers are another boay of officials who have received some attention and sympathetic consideration from a number of hon. gentlemen who have addressed the house in this debate. These men are performing an arduous and exacting task. Some of them are working long hours, travelling over rough roads, all in the country's service, and I have always thought that any minister, no matter how cold-blooded he might be, should blush with shame when he comes to sign his name to a contract which binds a man to perform the service these men are

The Budget-Mr. Maloney

performing to-day for the' remuneration they are receiving. There will be, I believe, an application before the government for an increase up to $70 a mile. Why, in the United States, wheTe they have real roads, the mail couriers receive $75 a mile as a flat rate; they have their annual holiday and they have sick leave and everything else. In Canada the courier has nothing; but if he were even secure in the contract which he signed with this government, that would perhaps be some source of satisfaction to him.

I have in mind the case of a courier in my constituency, a most excellent official, an estimable man in every way, whose only fault, whose only failing, lay in the fact that in 1926 he voted for me. He had a contract which had three and a half years to run and after that election was over, representations were made to the Postmaster General by some .of his political friends in that constituency The Postmaster General was ordered to get that man, to get rid of him. What did he do? He instituted an inquiry, he had a questionnaire despatched to every box holder on the route, of whom there were some thirty in all. My information is that every one of those documents came back to the department of the Postmaster General strongly in favour of the courier who had that route, eulogizing him in every way and telling the department that the people in the district were entirely satisfied with his services. In face of that fact the Postmaster General deliberately cancelled the contract. I ask hon. members: Has it come to this in Canada, that a solemn contract entered into between the government of this country and a subject is no longer a contract, is no longer anything but a scrap of paper, to be tom up at the whim and will of a minister and some of those who advise him?

The Minister of Public Works (Mr. Elliott) has so far escaped attention for the most part in this debate, and while the matter to which I wish to refer will come under him, I do not for a moment accuse him of such reckless extravagance as will be Shown by the item of which I desire to speak. It is proposed that we beautify the city of Ottawa. The Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) is, I believe, the father of that proposition. Since he moved out to Prince Albert he can think only of great, wide-open spaces, and if we continue him in his present position, a day will come when the great city of Ottawa will be wiped off the map and there will be nothing but a great, wide-open space in front of the parliament buildings. I understand it is the intention of this government to spend

millions of dollars in tearing down and destroying perfectly good property in this city. We are all anxious to make Ottawa a model oity; we are all anxious to beautify it so far as we possibly can; but when this goes to the extent of spending millions of dollars in pulling down and destroying property in the heart of the city, I believe that under present circumstances, with the debt and taxes the people of this country are called upon to pay, we are going too far. There are in this beautiful city many points which, at trifling expense, can be made more beautiful still, and the Prime Minister will have some trouble in defending his action in regard to the expenditure to which I refer. When he goes out among the people of Canada; when he goes out to Alberta; when he goes out to Prince Albert; when he goes down to Nova Scotia or any of the outlying sections of the country, he will have great difficulty in convincing the people there that an expenditure of $4,000,000 or $5,000,000 in the destruction of real property in Ottawa is of more importance than bringing the produce of Alberta and Nova Scotia to the central provinces. He will have difficulty in convincing the citizens of this country from the Atlantic to the Pacific that it is far better to destroy this property than to build a national highway from Halifax to Vancouver. He will have difficulty also when he comes before the citizens of Ottawa, because while many of them may favour the project, the taxpayer here is not enamoured of it; he hates to see millions of dollars of taxable property destroyed and a proportionately greater burden thrown back upon his shoulders. It is said that the Prime Minister will beautify Ottawa; that he is anxious to make Ottawa a city which will be the envy of the world. We admire him for that thought, but the stranger who comes within our gates, when he alights from the train in this city, would be far more favourably impressed by an imposing binding than by a wide open space. An imposing building would indicate industry. Would the imagination of the visitor not be more stirred by seeing substantial buildings than by seeing park benches filled with the unemployed? So much for the question of the beautification of Ottawa.

Other matters have been touched upon by several hon. gentlemen who have spoken, but one which I might mention and which is another instance of useless expenditure is the question of the money which will be spent in establishing embassies in various foreign countries. It is proposed to establish embassies at Paris and Tokyo. Both of these, if they follow along the line laid down by

The Budget-Mr. Maloney

the leader of the government when he instituted the ambassadorial palace at Washington, will cost this country millions of dollars. The Prime Minister will have our ambassadors go to Tokyo and to Paris. Why? What benefit will they be to this country? Will they bring any more trade to Canada? Will they bring any wealth from those countries to assist in increasing the prosperity of our land? Not at all. Those ambassadors are going there as official representatives of this country, and if we ever have a chance to get into trouble, why, we shall have a man on the job to start it. Far better indeed if the government, instead of spending this money on embassies, would appoint half a dozen really live, up to date agents in those countries who could procure for us a market for our surplus produce which we should be able to send them in the manufactured state.

I should like to say a word to the Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Dunning), who made an excellent speech in this house the other day. His most effective point was the last one he made, in which he condemned group government. In that I agree with him wholly, absolutely and entirely; but I was greatly surprised that the Minister of Railways should condemn group government with the minister himself occupying an important portfolio in a group government. The bulk of the expenditure of the minister's department, so far as this section of the country is concerned, comes I believe under the management of the Canadian National Railways. Were the Minister of Railways in his seat I should like to direct his attention to the conditions as they exist in the county which I represent, and I would ask him to tell us, for the further information of the citizens of this country, who most heartily desire to know, whether the government of Canada is running the Canadian National Railways or whether the Canadian National Railways is running the government. We are anxious as loyal citizens of Canada to see the Canadian National Railways thrive and be successful in every way; but the minister who is responsible to the people should have some say in the operation of that road. Let me tell him that in the county which I have the honour to represent, between two points on the Canadian National railway system which are twenty miles apart, it takes two days to make a round trip direct; between two other points fifty miles apart it takes three days to make a round trip direct-all because of the fact that traffic from that particular line has been diverted to suit the whims of some other sections of the province. I am speaking on behalf of a district which is to-day shipping

thousands and thousands of dollars worth of freight, a district which by hard labour is endeavouring to forge ahead and prosper. The people of that district are denied the railway facilities which should be theirs; the Canadian National Railway under the conditions which exist to-day does not meet the convenience of the people of that section.

Further, at one very important station on that line those who have business with the railway have been obliged during the last two years, to do business with the agents of the road in a very small box car. The station at Caldwell on the Canadian National railway was burned down some two years ago, and from that day to this no move has been made to replace it. The people of that important section of a great county, the revenue from which I am sure would pay many times over the cost of building a station, are therefore compelled to do their business with the railway in a small box car, a condition which is injurious to the health of the people, and I am sure causes great inconvenience and hardship to those entrusted with the conduct of the business of the road at that point. These are matters that I should like to bring to the attention of the Minister of Railways.

During this debate the Department of Immigration has been under review by several speakers. Last session the Minister of Immigration (Mr. Forke) was criticized, and criticized very severely. With that criticism I did not agree. The Minister of Immigration was a new man and I believed that whatever his political propensities or proclivities or changes of heart may have been, he was an honest man. He came into that department without much experience, and I felt that we should have deferred any criticism until later. That view I hold to-day. I believe that after this session is over, the Minister of Immigration will have learned something greatly to his advantage and greatly to the advantage of the important department over which he presides.

It is said that we need1 more immigrants in Canada. We do. Where should we first seek these immigrants? Should we go into foreign countries seeking foreigners? Our first duty, Mr. Speaker, should be to bring back to this country those of our own who have left. 1 have here the latest report of the registrar general for the province of Ontario, which shows that during last year he issued 17,284 birth certificates to native-born citizens of Ontario for the purpose of emigration. Those 17,284 native-born citizens of Ontario have left this country during the last year, without taking into account the thousands of others who may have been born in Quebec, the mari-times and the west.

Question Made Order for Return

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

Thomas William Bird

Progressive

Mr. T. W. BIRD (Nelson):

Mr. Speaker,

my hon. friend from South Renfrew (Mr. Maloney) has made a good speech. I admire the sturdy and robustious way in which he supports the principles of his party. However, I notice that he repeats the contention that our population is leaving us at a tremendous rate and seeking its future in the United States. I happened to receive to-day a copy of the monthly letter of the National City Bank of New York, and in paragraph 3 it deals with the unemployment situation in the United States of America. I will read the paragraph, which I think is an almost perfect answer to that part of the Conservative amendment dealing with unemployment. It says:

One of the features of the present situation which is causing concern is the amount of unemployment. For some time it has been evident that the surplus of workers was gradually increasing, but only recently has the situation become sufficiently serious to command general attention. With the sharp blump in industry at the close of last year, employment has been cut, and both federal and state labour department reports indicate the level of active factory labour in December and January to have been the lowest since 1921.

I have read this as an answer to that part of the Conservative amendment dealing with unemployment.

At this stage of my speech, Mr. Speaker, I should be pleased if you would call it six o'clock.

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

Hewitt Bostock (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

By leave of the house.

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

At six o'clock the house adjourned, without question put, pursuant to standing order. Thursday, March 8, 1928 The bouse met at three o'clock.


PRIVATE BILLS COMMITTEE


Third report of the select standing committee on miscellaneous private bills.-Mr. Parent.


March 8, 1928