March 23, 1931

CON

Murray MacLaren (Minister of Pensions and National Health)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. MURRAY MacLAREN (Minister of Pensions and National Health):

That is

a matter that comes more especially under the Board of Pension Commissioners. I understand the rumour is not correct.

Topic:   PENSION EXAMINER AT SASKATOON
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ACOUSTICS OF CHAMBER


On the orders of the day:


CON

Peter McGibbon

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. PETER McGIBBON (Muskoka-Ontario):

I should like to ask the Prime

Minister if his advisers have found any way of improving the acoustic properties of this chamber. It seems too bad that probably one-third of the members can hear nothing that is being said. Something should be done at once.

Topic:   ACOUSTICS OF CHAMBER
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CON

Richard Bedford Bennett (Prime Minister; Minister of Finance and Receiver General; President of the Privy Council; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Right Hon. R. B. BENNETT (Prime Minister) :

The former administration exhausted

every scientific method at the disposal of governments for the purpose of endeavouring to make the necessary improvements, but without effecting the end to be desired. I can only say to the hon. member for Mus-koka that what they did not accomplish we may be able to do, but so far such is not the case.

Topic:   ACOUSTICS OF CHAMBER
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VANCOUVER-SECOND NARROWS BRIDGE


On the orders of the day:


LIB

Albert Edward Munn

Liberal

Mr. A. E. MUNN (Vancouver North):

Has the Minister of Marine received any report of the engineers on the Second Narrows bridge at Vancouver, and if so, what action will be taken? I understand the report was made recently.

Topic:   VANCOUVER-SECOND NARROWS BRIDGE
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CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Hon. ALFRED DURANLEAU (Minister of Marine):

I have already answered a similar question asked by another hon. member.

Topic:   VANCOUVER-SECOND NARROWS BRIDGE
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LIB
CON

Alfred Duranleau (Minister of Marine)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DURANLEAU:

Yes. A report has

been received, but it is a very long one, and it has not yet been sufficiently considered. I do not know whether it will be advisable or not to table the report.

Topic:   VANCOUVER-SECOND NARROWS BRIDGE
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SPEECH FROM THE THRONE

CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ADDRESS IN REPLY


The house resumed from Friday, March 20, consideration of the motion of Mr. Max D. Cormier for an address to His Excellency the Administrator in reply to his speech at the opening of the session, and the proposed amendment thereto of Mr. Mackenzie King. Mr. PIERRE F. CASGRAIN (Charlevovx-Saguenay): Mr. Speaker, in listening on Friday last to the remarks of the hon. member for Montmagny (M. LaVergne) one must have been reminded of the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican. The hon. member stood in the temple of pretence and proclaimed his merits at large: I thank Thee, O Lord, because I am a good Canadian, because I am a good Tory, because I am a man who lives, not on bread alone, but on the spirit of life that cannot be extinguished. I thank Thee because I am not like the materialistic Liberals who still believe that bread is necessary to the sustenance of life, and who are such bad people as to raise prejudices and to dare to love their country in a different way from that in which I do. Amenl Well, Mr. Speaker, I am not a Tory, as everybody knows. I claim to be a good Liberal and a good Canadian. The hon. member for Montmagny, in his virtuous indignation, said that he wanted to unmask the Liberals. But in his haste to do so, he pulled off his own mask and exposed himself in his true colours. We know now where he stands. He is a bitter partisan, a Tory, and a bad one at that. If the hon. member sits where he is to-day, it is because he cannot find any other place in party politics elsewhere in this country, and surely we do not want him here; we want him to stay there. The hon. member went far back into history to revive dead issues and accuse us of raising prejudices. I shall not attempt to cover all the ground he travelled over, because I do not think it would be in the interests of the country at the present moment, and certainly it would in no way help to solve the problems of the day. The hon. member for Montmagny, however, ought to know that if prejudices were raised to the highest pitch in this country at any time, it was not by the Liberals of Quebec, but by some other people who are called Tories in various parts of the other provinces of Canada, and particularly in 1911, again in 1917, and at the elections following. It will be a great source of comfort to the house to know that the hon. member for Montmagny can be re- The Address-Mr. Casgrain lied on to indicate the faults and errors of parties on both sides of the house. We feel sure that his hon. leader will appreciate the sense of criticism of his new recruit and will thoroughly enjoy the performance of the Liberal-Nationalist, now the Tory member for Montmagny. The hon. member for Montmagny also said he felt proud of being a Christian and a good citizen of Canada when he read the announcement by the Prime Minister that Canada would have nothing to do with Russia. Most of us in the province of Quebec also fedt as proud as he did on that occasion, but I think the hon. member for Montmagny, if he has a little bit of good in the bottom of his heart, could not have felt himself to be such a good Christian last Friday when he made such a bitter attack on the memory of our past revered leader, the late Sir Wilfrid Laurier. It was really sad to hear the hon. member accusing such a noble statesman, one of the greatest and one of the most cherished in our history, and yet the hon. member for Montmagny spoke of his having betrayed his country and his people. Such words, Mr. Speaker, bear in themselves their own condemnation. Suffice it to say, that posterity will judge who best served his country, whether the hon. member for Montmagny or the late Sir Wilfrid Laurier. When the hon. member will be no more, his name will have fallen into complete oblivion, while the memory of our revered leader, the late Sir Wilfrid Laurier, will live on forever, and his name will go down in history as one of the greatest statesmen that Canada has ever produced, indeed as one of the greatest statesmen of the British Empire. Coming back to the speech from the throne, a reading of it is rather amusing. It conveys the impression that the people of Canada ought all to rise and sing for joy at having at the head of affairs in this country such a wonderful government to direct Canada at this time. Yet, Mr. Speaker, we have been sitting here for over a week listening to speeches in this debate, and as yet we have heard no member of the administration of to-day but the Prime Minister himself, in defence of his own administration. Not one of his ministers dares to stand up. Possibly the Prime Minister might not allow them to do so, and yet the right hon. gentleman is sad at heart when we call this a one-man- government. The Prime Minister was the only member of the government who attempted to say anything in answer to the speech of my hon. leader the other day, and in his attempt I think you will admit, Mr. Speaker, that he utterly failed. The speech made by my hon. leader last Monday stands, I think, as one of the most wonderful and serious indictments that ever was laid at the door of any government, and yet to-day that indictment stands unanswered. As one newspaper so well put it, anyone who had any doubts that the speech from the throne was written by the hand of the Prime Minister was grievously mistaken. Anyone who is familiar with the doings of the leader of the government must have known from a reading of the speech that from beginning to end it was the work of the Prime Minister. A more nebulous pack of promises there never was-vague promises, nothing definite in relation to the problems that we have to face to-day. Some hon. members from the west have asked questions of the hon. leader of the government, and quite properly so. They have asked him where was the agricultural policy of the government of to-day-a policy that is so badly needed to settle the difficulties of the west at the present time. No answer. Then hon. gentlemen on our side of the house have put to the leader of the government some most pertinent questions affecting their ridings. No answer. Apparently the right hon. the Prime Minister is not so much concerned with these matters as with running his own government alone-all the departments of the administration. Instead of immediate relief being afforded or in prospect, the man on the street looks in the speech from the throne in vain for anything constructive.' There cannot fail to be anxiety in the face of such a world crisis as that through which we are passing at the present time, when the only thing in prospect in the near future for the people of this country is more taxation to meet the huge deficit which the speech states we have to face to-day, and also to fulfil some of the costly promises which the government has made in order to get into power. The speech from the throne states that in this period of universal distress our country has not suffered as much as other nations have. We are willing to admit the truth of that statement. But we disagree with the government when the speech from the throne states that our difficulties are not the consequence of the universal crisis, but are antecedent thereto, and that domestic factors have largely determined the degree of economic distress from which this country is suffering to-day. Let us examine those two statements for a moment, Mr. Speaker, to see if we can



The Address-Mr. Casgrain reconcile them. It is a well-known fact that in an influenza epidemic, for instance, those who suffer most are those who are tired out, worn down, and unable to put up any resistance. Yet we are told in the speech from the throne that Canada of all nations in the world will perhaps get on its feet the quickest. If that is so, the policies of the late administration could not have been so nefarious and injurious as the government has pretended that they were. I need not repeat here to-day the figures that were placed on Hansard by my hon. leader in his speech last Monday. They show the wonderful progress of Canada under Liberal administration during the nine years my hon. leader was at the head of the government. Everybody knows that up to the middle of July last year, Canada stood fifth in world trade, but to-day it has receded from that position, and since the 28th of July last Canada has had to take a back seat. When the speech from the throne also comments on the Unemployment Relief A'ct passed last session, we. cannot all agree with what it says, nor can we agree when the speech talks about the marked improvement in the domestic situation that has come about as a result of the changes made in the tariff last September. The government promised that factories would spring up here and there to keep our people employed. We were promised that work would be procurable in abundance throughout the country. During the last electoral campaign in every parish of my constituency my opponent promised that following July 28 the pulp and paper factories would be working six days per week instead of three days. To-day the same pulp and paper factories with few exemptions are closed. To-day I received letters from my people at Beaupre saying that the main industry there, the paper mills of the Ste. Anne Paper Company, Limited, are closed for a period of over a year and a half. The government now in office promised it would give employment to everybody and that the factories would be working full time. To-day we read in the newspapers that even in the good city of Toronto things are not as satisfactory as they should be. In the paper of March 22 we read: Unemployed angered. Arson attempted when work was not forthcoming. In this instance certain people went to obtain work and conditions were so bad that apparently they had to take the law in their own hands in order to get it. Mr. Speaker, the conditions I have outlined should not exist in this country especially in view of the bill passed by the government last September. A hundred workers are going to Russia. This is proclaimed in a headline of the Gazette of March 18. Toronto Star says party of mechanics will leave in May. Then the Gazette despatch continues: Toronto, March 18.-"Soviet Russia's worldwide plea for skilled mechanics and expert craftsmen has been answered by 100 Toronto bricklayers, carpenters, technicians and contractors, who have been guaranteed employment in the Soviet Union and will leave Canada early in May. Arrangements for sailing have been made," the Toronto Star says to-day. The party will be composed of Russians, Canadians, Frenchmen, Finlanders and other nationalities. Wives and children will travel with the heads of the households and many will carry with them their personal belongings. We were promised that we would have more work after the present government took office but in a great city like Toronto where work is supposed to be procurable in abundance and where factories are working full time the people are forced to leave their own land in order to secure work in Soviet Russia. Will this government countenance such actions when it has placed a ban on Russian goods and has said "We will have nothing more to do with Russia"? I would be pleased if the government would take such action in the matter as would obviate the necessity of our own people leaving Canada to go to Russia. We know that the unemployment situation in Canada is as bad as, if not worse than, it was last July. I think previous speakers have placed figures on Hansard to show that the number of unemployed in Canada has now reached over 300,000. As one who has been looking around in the city of Montreal I say the Unemployment Relief Act of 1930 has not brought the results hon. members opposite expected it would. To my own knowledge Mr. Speaker, in the city of Montreal there are many unemployed and too many asking for help and assistance. Out of the moneys which were voted last September a certain amount was allocated to the city of Montreal, but up to the present time the best help and assistance which the unemployed have been able to secure has been derived from money received as the result of the few snow storms which we have had in that city. Certainly the leader of the government is not able to take credit for those storms. The works in the city have barely begun and employ but a few hundred people. The Canadian National terminal in Montreal is the only public work being proceeded with and God knows the work has been systematically hindered and delayed by the executive council of the cityMARCH 23, 1931 The Address-Mr. Casgrain of Montreal which was more anxious to promote its own interests than those of the community. I learn from to-day's issue of the Montreal Gazette that the same city council has visited this city of Ottawa during the week end and has succeeded in obtaining from this government another extension of time and delay. They are trying to have their own views prevail in the matter which means, Mr. Speaker great delay in the relief of the unemployed in the city of Montreal. The operations of the Canadian National Railways have reached a standstill and an attempt has been made to spoil the policy adopted by the late government in the year 1929. If we have read the Montreal newspapers we will have seen that the situation is not satisfactory. For instance on March 13 Le Canada contained the following heading, over an article prepared by one of the reporters who had been around the city of Montreal and had visited the various works being carried on by the city: The relief of unemployment Such are the facts ascertained hy a reporter of the "Canada" in the course of a visit to each yard We notice that some of the men who were working were not our own good French Canadians but were foreigners. In the Montreal Gazette of March 6, 1931, under the heading Unemployed Relief System Described as Totally Wrong we have a statement made by Dr. Pedley who is at the head of the Hygiene Faculty of McGill university. In the article Dr. Pedley tells of the conditions in the city of Montreal. I think I shall read his statement as contained in the newspaper to which I have referred; so that you may have his opinion concerning the working of the relief act of 1930. I quote as follows: Money voted might as well have been thrown into sewer. Director of Montreal Council of Social Agencies charges demoralization follows haphazard policy. Criticism of Montreal's unemployment relief methods coupled with the declaration that the moneys voted for direct relief by the government might just as well have been thrown in a sewer, marked an address by Dr. F. G. Pedley, director of the Montreal Council of Social Agencies and assistant professor of industrial hygiene at McGill university, on "Unemployment relief in Montreal in 1930-31," before members of the Lions club yesterday at a luncheon meeting in the Mount Royal hotel. Unemployed men in Montreal had been given much food but no constructive help, he maintained. Their stomachs were filled, but neither the city nor the relief agencies had an intelligent plan to "put the men on their feet." "Our whole system is wrong," Dr. Pedley maintained. "Giving something for nothing is a faulty system, one which undermines the morals of the unemployed, makes them dependent upon others. We should demand some services of those to whom we administer unemployment relief." _ He stressed that in some cities-particularly in the west, those to whom relief is given are made to pay for it by working. Winnipeg had its unemployed earning relief by labour in the municipal wood yards. Until Montreal was in a position to make the men work for relief, the system of relief as practised at present in the city was dangerous and devoid of constructive help. . The Dominion government, at a special session, had voted $20,000,000 to the direct and indirect relief of the unemployed, the speaker recalled. Of this sum $4,000,000 was scheduled for direct relief. Montreal's share of that sum was $150,000, granting that both the Quebec government and the city council would give similar amounts. The total in the city for direct relief, therefore, was $450,000, and this sum was already nearly exhausted with the worst part of the winter still to come. Public Works Fail "The public works undertaken by the city to relieve the unemployed have given little relief," Dr. Pedley declared. "Our records show that unemployment in the city has hardly been reduced through these works. The number of destitute men, helpless because they are unemployed, has not changed." "We have been giving relief," he continued, "but we have tried to do the job too well though we are criticized for our parsimonius attitude. We have given Montreal a name as a good place for the hard-up to spend the winter in; next winter we will probably be stormed by destitute people who have heard this despite our great reluctance to give publicity on what relief work we are doing, of what is being done here for the hard-up and unemployed. Our system is entirely wrong." He added that Montreal's relief system was productive of demoralization in the ranks of the unemployed. Their morale went with the definite assurance that they could keep on benig unemployed for they would always have a bed and three meals a day, and this without work or effort. "The money being spent by the government on this kind of relief might just as well be thrown in the sewer," Dr. Pedley stated, adding: "The situation is this: No man goes hungry in Montreal. There is an abundance of food, but no intelligent plan to put the men on their feet. There is great laxity in the system. The system of relief work in the city of Montreal has been in the hands of the executive committee of the city of Montreal, which is friendly to the present government, and this is the result. The money voted by parliament at the special session last September has been spent without bringing about any substantial relief of the unemployment situation in that city. In the rural districts the situation is not much better. As was said by the Hon. Mr. Francoeur, Minister of Public Works in the provincial government, the Dominion government should have consulted the various provincial governments with respect to the distribution of the unemploy-



The Address-Mr. Casgrain ment relief fund. At many places the works for which money was appropriated are not yet under way, and will not be before the snow is all gone. In other words the rules and regulations framed by the hon. Minister of Labour are such as to render it practically impossible for municipalities to undertake any work for fear of running into debt and thus being obliged to tax the ratepayers to make good any deficiency in the federal appropriation. Under those rules and regulations money from the unemployment relief funds could not be used for repairs to churches or to public buildings belonging to school commissions or fabriques, and as a result many municipalities were unable to avail themselves of that measure of relief for their unemployed. The late administration, Mr. Speaker, in the last session of the last parliament voted large sums of money for various public works in the province of Quebec, but some of those works have not yet been undertaken. In the city of Montreal, for instance-and the hon. member for St. James (Mr. Rinfrei) referred to it last week-$1,500,000 was appropriated for the purpose of constructing certain wharves in the harbour. That work has not yet been proceeded with. Certain votes for public works in my own riding have not yet been applied and, of course, no work has been done. I refer particularly to proposed public works at Pointe au Pic and Baie Ste. Catherine. If the money so voted had been expended on those various undertakings it would have afforded substantial relief of the unemployment situation in that district where now the people are idle. Is the government playing politics? Is it delaying expenditure of the money because of the fact that the member for the county is sitting on this side of the house? Does the government think that if the money is expended on certain public works at a later date the political effect of such expenditure will be to its advantage? As has been stated by other members who have preceded me in this debate, farm products to-day are selling at lower prices than ever before. Butter-that played so prominent a part in the campaign of my hon. friends opposite-is selling at lower prices than prevailed last July. The same remark applies to cheese and eggs. Wheat has touched the lowest point for over thirty years and is selling at less than the cost of production. At the special session the Prime Minister promised to find a market for our wheat and to eliminate the competition from Russia and the Argentine. He went to England, and we all know he failed to secure the British market for our wheat. He tried also to find a market for it in China, but there again he failed. JAr. Casgrain.] He went to France, and as a result of his interviews with the French authorities we were led to suppose that France would take a substantial quantity of our wheat, but from what I have heard recently our exports to France will be in the neighbourhood of what she usually buys from us.


?

An hon. MEMBER:

Less.

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

Yes, the amount will be less. He tried also to negotiate a treaty with France to supersede that negotiated by the late administration. In this instance also the results do not appear to be very encouraging.

The treaties with Australia and New Zealand were denounced on the floor of this house by our hon. friends opposite and during the general election of last July they told the people that if returned to power they would negotiate new treaties that would be of much greater advantage to Canada. After the Imperial conference we were told the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Stevens) had been able to come to a very satisfactory arrangement with the representatives of the Australian and New Zealand governments, but we have heard no more about those proposed treaties, of the wonderful attempts made to negotiate better treaties than those negotiated by the late administration. I dare say that the results will not show any improvement on those obtained by the late government.

During the absence of the Prime Minister in England a plan was launched by the president of the Canadian Pacific Railway Company for a credit organization to help the farmers of the west through their present difficulties by enabling them to adopt mixed farming. I should be ready to commend this plan if it were likely to be productive of good results, but from what I have heard from members from the west during the course of this debate the plan does not seem likely to be of much practical use to the farmers of western Canada. We need at the present time-and this view is shared by hon. members from the west-wider and freer markets, better credit facilities and lower freight rates, and until these are obtained the government will not be in a position to say that it has been able to settle any of the economic problems now bearing so heavily on this country, particularly the prairie provinces.

In the speech from the throne we are told that the government intends to reduce, the cost of production to the farmers in an effort to help them in their present difficulties. How can this possibly be brought about when the cost of nearly all the commodities needed by the farmer has been increased by about 300

The Address-Mr. Casgrain

per cent as a result of the tariff amendments that were put into force at the special session? At that time we were promised that the legislation then enacted would stimulate business and relieve unemployment, if not cure it, without raising prices to the consumer. But the Prime Minister had not reached England when the glass producers in Canada increased their prices to such an extent that he was communicated with and authorized his Minister of National Revenue to withdraw the increased tariff duties on glass. The tariff amendments at the special session were also intended to help the textile and steel industries, but statistics show that the greatest decrease in employment is found in those two industries and also in the pulp and paper industry. As a result of the legislation brought down by the government last September, trade and industry to-day are stagnant. Business during the last six months shows a downward trend. It is useless to think that by closing our markets to imports we shall be able to increase our exports. To-day we have to face a substantial increase in the national debt with a decrease in revenue from customs and excise duties and sales tax. We have a deficit of over $100,000,-

000. Yet we are told by the government that they intend to make a further revision of the tariff. Nobody after our experience since last September can believe for a moment that such a policy will bring about good results. We cannot but deplore the fixed idea of the government that protection and still higher protection is the only panacea for the evils of the body politic. The sooner the government changes its ideas on the tariff the better it will be for the country. The tariff policy of this administration appears to be an expedient rather than a solution of our economic troubles. In fact for a country such as Canada with its diversified production a high tariff wall is not at all feasible. I think I cannot do better, Mr. Speaker, than to read to this house an opinion that was given by an economist in the review published by La Banque Canadienne Nationale during the month of October, 1930. This opinion was as follows: The greatest danger of protectionism is that it lends itsellf to abuses. Producers are organized while consumers are practically unorganized, so that the claims of the "former are always much more strongly put forward than -those of the latter. Moreover, the advantage which an excess of protection confers upon a group of producers are far more in evidence than the hardships inflicted on the masses of consumers. Protection calls for protection. When the government intervenes on behalf of an industry others in their turn claim intervention on the score of fairness, and when a state initiates a measure of protection other states are inclined to follow

in its footsteps in order to equalize the competition.

Likewise excess of protectionism includes its own corrective protection by becoming general, loses part of its efficiency. The countries which adopt high protection strive to develop their exportations and restrict their imports. However, when a great number of countries endeavour to sell to other countries the greatest quantity of goods possible and purchase the least possible, it is a foregone conclusion that international trade must slow up so much the more so that in all these countries the excessive customs duties increase the cost of living as also the cost of production and reduces the purchasing power. Hence the necessity of negotiating trade treaties, in order to abate the ills brought about by protectionism. So through force of circumstances, we are brought back to this basic principle, that trade is an exchange.

This, Mr. Speaker, is the view expressed by a person who is not supposed to be a partisan, but who is engaged in finance and who expresses this opinion in a review published broadcast throughout Canada by such an outstanding bank as La Banque Canadienne Nationale.

In the speech from the throne, we are promised a new tariff board. Well, Mr. Speaker, we had a tariff board previously, appointed by the last administration. This tariff board acted in an advisory capacity; it was supposed to collect and as a matter of fact did collect most valuable information, after numerous hearings at which manufacturers, producers and consumers alike were heard freely and at length as to the changes which might be made in the tariff. The government then had the advantage of such intelligent investigation, and knew what it was going to do. Why should this board have been abolished six months ago, when the government of the day apparently finds it necessary to appoint a new one now? Is it to promote some friends of the government? This is hardly being done nowadays, under the new regime. This new board apparently will be composed of members selected by the present administration, and knowing the leader of the government as we do know him I dare say that those who will be appointed to the board will be staunch protectionists. We all know that under this board appointed by the present government there will be only one idea, that of raising the tariff and protecting industries in which there are numerous friends of the present administration. That will be the case if the new board adopts the attitude of the members of the government who received delegations which came to present their views in Ottawa about a month ago, and to which my hon. friend from St. James (Mr. Rinfret)

The Address-Mr. Casgrain

referred the other day. Certainly if that is the case this new board will attain no results, because when the leader of the government was to have received a delegation which appeared a few weeks ago, he did not listen to the members of the delegation at all but went away before they arrived. I am afraid that under the present administration this new board will be not a tariff board but a tariff farce.

We are also given to understand that possibly this board will have statutory powers, which was not the case with the old board. These statutory powers may give this board the right to raise or lower the tariff at its own discretion. Well, Mr. Speaker, if the government really intends granting such power to this board we on this side of the house could not possibly vote for such a measure, because I think it would be a direct departure from the rights and privileges which the members of this parliament must exercise with regard to the supervision of the taxation of the people of this country and the raising of revenues. Those are the exclusive rights and privileges granted to members of parliament by the British North America Act.

Another most amazing statement in the speech from the throne, Mr. Speaker, is the allusion to the success of the Imperial conference. Those who listened to the enlightened speech of our leader must realize that nothing is so far from the truth. The propositions that were brought up by the Prime Minister of Canada at that conference were, after careful consideration, flatly turned down and dismissed. The other members of the conference said, "We cannot accept that proposition." They nearly sent the Prime Minister home. The conference was practically a fiasco because of the Prime Minister of Canada, and it was only to save his face that the conference was adjourned to meet this summer in Ottawa. After the conference the Prime Minister travelled extensively through Europe. Wherever he went I do not think he brought any credit to this country. He has acted as a stormy petrel, and I believe he did nothing that could be called good advertising and good publicity for this country. Rather I would be inclined to say that he has lowered Canada in the estimation of the other nations of the world. The right hon. gentleman who runs this country is full of schemes.

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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Oh, oh.

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LIB

Joseph Philippe Baby Casgrain

Liberal

Mr. CASGRAIN:

I think "running this country " is the proper expression. He had many great schemes during the last election and during the last session of parliament.

My right hon. leader has pointed out all his promises and all his schemes, and they are in Hansard both for this session and for the short session in September last. To-day, however, we have a new scheme of national development, including old age pensions, technical education and highway development. But, Mr. Speaker, the government is more careful to-day; they say that these matters will be proceeded with after careful consideration, and by progressive stages. I am glad to see that the right hon. gentleman who runs the government is progressing, in a way. We heard all about old age pensions, technical education and national highways during the last session of parliament, but the right hon. gentleman then promised that we would have these things immediately. He wanted to get into power then, but to-day, now that he is in power, he asks for more time.

According to the speech from the throne we are also to have more effective control of finances and over government purchases. With such a leader as the present leader of the government I am a little afraid of all these controls; I fear they may injure the credit of this country and they may even be detrimental to the party headed by the right hon. gentleman. We had such controls before, under the Union government, and God knows what they cost the country. If the government really wants to practise economy and do something useful I think they should out off some of the departments that perhaps are not necessary to-day, such as the Depart-of the Interior. If the right hon. gentleman who leads the government is going to do all the work of all the departments he might even do away with some of the ministers who at present are not so over-burdened with work that they are necessary to this house or to the federal government. The hon. gentleman appears to have been very busy since he came into power; he has made many attempts to solve the problems of to-day, but has had little success. Let me show what one of his own friends said about him in 1917. I find in Hansard for that year that the late Sir Sam Hughes, referring to the right hon. gentleman who leads the government to-day, and speaking in connection with another scheme of his, the National Service Commission, said:

He has brought bad luck to every undertaking, every interest, every man with whom he has been associated. . . . He stands as having been the head of the greatest failure that ever occurred in the public life of the Dominion of Canada.

Yes, the right hon. gentleman indeed has brought bad luck to this country; I think he has brought failure as well, and I believe

The Address-Mr. Bovrman

if he stays in office for any length of time he will bring bad luck and failure to his own party.

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March 23, 1931