May 15, 1931

LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

I am afraid there are

still some gentlemen who will vote for resolutions, of this kind, but who do not believe in them. I shall not try to convince my hon. friend.

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CON

Richard Burpee Hanson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

That is

no answer.

I Mi-. Lapointe. 1

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

We do not think alike

on these things.

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CON

Richard Burpee Hanson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

I agree.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE :

I know that, but I prefer my own view's to those of the hon. gentleman.

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CON

Richard Burpee Hanson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

That is

your privilege.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

That is right. If my

hon. friend will discuss this matter and give us the benefit of his opinion, I shall be quite pleased to listen to him, but in the meantime I would ask him to listen to me.

By arbitration it is intended to apply to nations the same rational principle for the settlement of differences as all the civilized countries have accepted for the settlement of disputes between individuals. Even during the war, as early as 1917, I remember that Pope Benedict XV preached the doctrine that the nations which would refuse arbitration ought to be considered as the aggressors. Arbitration provides at least a way to try to prevent war, and I think it should enlist the support of hon. gentlemen everywhere.

The resolution before the house provides for accepting a tribunal of conciliation, or conciliation and judicial settlement by way of the Permanent Court of International Justice, or, if the nations prefer, by arbitration before an arbitral tribunal.

In the first place, all disputes may be submitted to conciliation. Then disputes as to the respective rights of nations are to be referred to the Permanent Court of International Justice or to an arbitral tribunal; but, by agreement, they may also be referred first to conciliation. In the third place, nonlegal disputes, if not settled by conciliation, are to be referred to an arbitral tribunal. There are at least four reservations, which are the same or about the same as were put into our acceptance of the optional clause. The last one reserves disputes with any party which is no't a member of the League of Nations. I suppose that owing to the conditions mentioned in section three of this resolution that reservation had to be placed there, because nations which are not members of the league could not submit their differences to the council of the league.

My only regret so far as the last reservation is concerned would be that it excludes the United States. After all the main difficulties or the greatest sources of trouble we might have in Canada necessarily would be with our neighbours to the south. As the Prime Minister has stated, however, fortunately there exists a tribunal for the settle-

International Disputes-Mr. Lapointe

ment of differences. The general impression is that the International Joint Commission exists merely for the purpose of settling difficulties concerning boundary waters. For the information of the house I would state that its powers are wider than that. Sections 9 and 10 of the treaty of 1909 permit either of the two countries to submit any difficulties to the International Joint Commission for investigation and report, if the two countries agree the decision shall be binding. I do not think Canadians fully realize the great significance of the powers of the International Joint Commission whereby if the two countries agree, the decision of that court is binding. Further, by the Kellogg-Briand pact signed by the United States and Canada both countries bind themselves to exhaust all pacific means of settling difficulties before resorting to war. In connection with the treaty of 1909 I submit the Kellogg-Briand pact places an obligation on the part of the United States as well as on the part of Canada to submit to the International Joint Commission any trouble or difficulty which may have arisen between the two countries. Up to the present time the International Joint Commission has proved its usefulness in the settlement of international difficulties. Only recently it came to a unanimous decision on a matter which had created much friction between the state of Washington and the province of British Columbia with regard to damage by fumes and smoke passing from the plant of the Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company into the state of Washington. The farmers of that state complained of damage occasioned by the fumes from the works at Trail, B.C.

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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)

Mr. BENNETT:

Of course they dealt

with that only by consent.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

Yes, by consent. By

agreement the difficulty was submitted to the International Joint Commission, it could not have been submitted otherwise. Fortunately a unanimous decision was reached and accepted by both parties, with the result that the trouble has disappeared.

I have but one thing further to state. I do not know whether my right hon. friend the Prime Minister remembers that once he told me in this house I was taking my policies from Geneva.

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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)

Mr. BENNETT:

Yes.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

I am glad to see that he is taking some policies from Geneva.

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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)

Mr. BENNETT:

Yes, but there is a great

distinction between the two.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

This resolution is one of them. My right hon. friend says there is a great difference between the two. It is fashionable among certain business circles to speak contemptuously of idealists. Let me say, Mr. Speaker, that there is no antagonism between ideals and action. Ideals inspire and animate action; they control action and direct where it should go. I think that not only in that sphere 'but in other spheres the right hon. gentleman may, if not take his policies from Geneva, at least act in cooperation with the other countries of the world. The progress of the last fifty years has changed the world. The combined efforts of scientists and industrialists have absolutely revolutionized economic conditions. Until fifty years ago, provided certain conditions existed, a nation could live by itself and for itself. Not so to-day. The slightest dislocation in the- trade of the world has its effect everywhere. The last dislocation we know has had its effect in many countries, and probably everywhere. In some countries the effect has been rebellion or revolution; in others, as in -this country, the result has -been a change of government. Sir, in this house the other day an hon. member said we were too much inclined to think internationally. I do not agree with him. We are not thinking internationally enough and I state that at the present time the most important concern of a statesman is to undertake nothing without first -considering not only the interests of his own country but the result of his action on other countries. Modern progress has made the world accessible by a trip of twenty days. Every country is our next door neighbour and surely we must cease to think in terms of mail coaches and paddle boats. These are the views I hold, Mr. Speaker, and it is because of these views I congratulate the right hon. gentleman upon bringing forward this resolution. It is in the hope that the resolution will go further that at this time I give it my support.

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IND

Joseph Henri Napoléon Bourassa

Independent

Mr. HENRI BOURASSA (Labelle):

Mr. Speaker, with most of the admirable sentiments expressed by the Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) and by the late Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe) I heartily agree. It is with the greatest pleasure that I support the present resolution which I think is but another step in the right path towards peace. At the same time, as an old pacifist not only between wars but during wars, may I express the view that perhaps some of the reservations contained in this resolution could have been dispensed with. The right hon. gentleman, who is always at his best when he advances prin-

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International Disputes-Mr. Bourassa

ciples of law, has rightly said that these reservations, at least those of a general portent, are in accordance with the principles and practices of international law. He is quite right, but following the words and the line of argument followed by the hon. member for Quebec East (Mr. Lapointe) is it not true that the tendency, and the right tendency, at the present time is not only to render war more difficult but to make peace easier, and therefore to change the spirit and practice of international law and international relations, so as to make peace more readily acknowledged and create more obstacles in the way of war?

I have given some little time during my life, sir, to the study of modern history, and I have been struck with one feature. Either with regard to the last war, which some are beginning to understand, or with regard to previous wars let us say only in the last century, one thing is striking. Most of the men who were responsible for the policies of the various countries who declared war or against whom war was declared did not want it at heart. Take the last war; whether in Germany or in England, in France or in Russia, in Italy or in Roumania, I believe-though I did not always believe it-that most of the statesmen responsible for the diplomacy and the policies of those countries did not want war. But, as Mr. Lloyd George has expressed it most tersely, they all tumbled into war. Why? There were various causes, into which I will not go, but the main reason was because the instruments of peace were not at hand while the instruments of war were simply surrounding them. In each of those countries there was a huge army or a powerful navy headed by officers full of military ardour. I do not think those officers were much more desirous of war for the sake of war than politicians or diplomats, but with them war was a trade, and they realized that they could not keep up very long the efficiency of these instruments of war in any other way. With the day of war close at hand, they thought it was the duty of their rulers to strike the first blow at the most opportune moment for their own country. That was the thought of such a noble man as Lord Fisher. I refer frequently to him because, having known him, I know what was in his mind and in his heart. He wrote, over his own signature, that the great fault of his country was not to have struck at Germany at a more opportune moment, so that Lord Fisher's name and his words have been quoted in Germany as Bernhardi's words and arguments have been quoted in the other camp, to show that England on the one hand

LMr. Bourassa.]

or Germany on the other was bent on making war. I think that was untrue of both countries and of their responsible statesmen. I believe the same thing could be demonstrated with regard to every other great country in Europe and in America.

Surely in this country, whatever position we may have taken with regard to the merits of the war and the moral duty of Canada to participate in that war or, as I took it, the moral duty of Canada to abstainfrom that participation, I think we all agree that if it had been possible we shouldnot have been there. I think we all agree that as one unit of the great British commonwealth of nations-I do not like the word, but I make use of it since it is accepted now-our influence in the councils of that commonwealth always should be towards safer guarantees of peace, towards arbitration and conciliation rather than towards the organization of war for the empire or by the empire,against the rest of the world. I am sure in

that statement I express the sentiments of the Prime Minister and of my friends to my right as well as my own. In that respect I entirely agree with the Prime Minister, and I think he has expressed admirably the broad sentiments of all classes of Canadians. He can count upon the support of such old pacifists as myself in this direction, as I think he can count upon the support of his own friends who approved of the participation of Canada in the last war.

Let me repeat, however, that if we want to lend our help and exercise our influence in the direction which is implied in this resolution, we could dispense with some of those reservations. Let us take them one by one. In the first reservation we exclude from our adhesion to the act "disputes arising prior to the accession, in respect of Canada, to the General Act, or relating to situations of fact prior to the said accession." Why make an exception of that kind? Those past difficulties, if there are any, are of the same nature as difficulties that may arise in the future and therefore, if we think proper to adhere to any international compact the object of which is to settle by peaceful means future disputes, why not make it retroactive so that past difficulties, or difficulties the causes of which may have arisen in the past, also may be covered by the same act? If that act is good for disputes not yet arisen, surely it ought to apply equally, to disputes that have been already launched or which are possibly under discussion, but susceptible of being settled by arbitration.

International Disputes-Mr. Bourassa

I think everyone can agree to the second reservation, because it is in the spirit of the resolution. I might even say that it 'broadens the scope of the resolution. It indicates that we are prepared to submit to other peaceful means of arbitration questions that could not be settled under this act, and that we do not shut the door upon other means of peaceful action.

With the third reservation I at once agree and disagree. I would welcome the day when this government, as representing the senior partner in the association of nations outside of Great Britain itself, would take the initiative in bringing about the creation of a board of arbitration as between the various partners of the British commonwealth of nations. I consider the Prime Minister, in spite of many differences of opinion we may have had in the past or may have in the future, well qualified to bring up, at the proper and nearest possible occasion, this question of creating a board of arbitration as between the various partners in the British commonwealth of nations. The idea already has been suggested in this house; I hope it will make its way. If we accept as true-and I think it is now accepted by all, including even those who at first disputed the principle-that Canada, Australia, South Africa and Ireland are full-fledged nations, equal in status with Great Britain, and subordinate to no other nations even within the sphere of the British Empire, then surely, as among ourselves, we are all in the position of nations enjoying equal rights, having to fulfil equal duties, including the supreme and primary duty of agreeing solemnly before the world to submit all our internal disputes to a proper tribunal. The voluntary recoirrse to such a tribunal, either by Canada, in some difficulty with Australia or New Zealand, for example, or by Ireland, in some misunderstanding with respect to the interpretation of their treaty with England- the voluntary recourse to such a tribunal, I say, even within the realm of the British commonwealth, would be in our day the greatest standing lesson in peace, accord and amity which the British Empire could give to the world at large. If, therefore, it is the intention of the government to encourage the devising of some means of settling international disputes-and I insist upon the word international, since we are all equal nations within the empire-between British communities, then I have no objection to our withdrawing from the operation of the General Act any question in dispute between ourselves.

Paragraph 4 provides for "disputes concerning questions which by international law are solely within the domestic jurisdiction of states."

It is in respect to that point that I think it well to clear the atmosphere just now. The Prime Minister has stated, concisely and with precision, the state of international law as it has obtained up to our day, and perhaps as it still is in the letter of the law. The ex-Minister of Justice stated that up to 1914 no nation acknowledged any supreme authority over itself or over other nations to prevent international disputes. Upon this point I beg to differ from both the right hon. gentleman and my hon. friend. My hon. friend says that up to fourteen years ago there was no such thing as international arbitration. That compels me to introduce a subject which might, perhaps, be a bone of contention between some of us. But as a student of history I wish to present the question in no spirit of dogmatism.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

My hon. friend has misunderstood me. The treaty of 1909 with the United States-

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IND

Joseph Henri Napoléon Bourassa

Independent

Mr. BOURASSA:

I am not speaking of

individual treaties; I am speaking of universal policy. I understood my hon. friend to say that up to 1914 the old Roman dictum, that if you wish for peace you must prepare for war, was practically the only rule among nations. May I refer him to a man who certainly never displayed any narrow, bigoted, sectarian spirit-the late John Morley. I shall have to rely upon my memory for what I am about to say, after many years of recollection. But as I remember, in one of the finest chapters of his Life of Gladstone, either in connection with the situation that arose at the time of the Franco-Prussian war, or more probably still in reference to the ever-recurring oriental question, at the time of one of the innumerable occupations of the island of Crete, John Morley refers to the attitude of Gladstone. Morley, as everyone knows, was a thorough agnostic; and analyzing the state of mind of one of the pillars of the Anglican church, who a few years before or after made use of his powerful pen to denounce the papacy, Vatican and Vaticanism, he showed that Gladstone was nevertheless big enough to recognize the part which the papacy had played in international misunderstandings. Both Gladstone and Morley knew enough of their history to know that, for centuries, for nearly a thousand years, by common consent of all the nations comprising what has been called Christendom, there had existed a

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International Disputes-Mr. Bourassa

spiritual power of arbitration in the Holy See. The exercise of that power, in international affairs, was a purely human function. The exercise of that political power was in the hands of the pope by common consent of the nations. No pope and no council of the Catholic church, including the Vatican council, has ever held that this was a prerogative of the Roman pontiff by reason of his claim to the apostolic succession. It was a purely political power to which all the nations gave allegiance because, in the eternal words of Edmund Burke, they considered that the pope, even when some of the nations had seceded from Rome, was still the spiritual head of Christendom. To come back to Gladstone's reflections, as analyzed by John Morley. Ever since the treaties of Munster and Osnabruk, ever since the peace of Westphalia, so-called, which in the words of some of the highest authorities on modern history has changed the operation of international law in modern times, the power of arbitration exercised by the papacy has been rendered vacant. Catholic nations have not, any more than Protestant nations, acknowledged it. One of the articles of the secret treaty concluded in 1915 between England, France, Italy and Russia, excluded the pope from the councils of nations, at least in the settlement of the last war. But, in the words of John Morley, no substitute was then created. The League of Nations is an attempt to replace the old spiritual authority of the Holy See by something more akin to the principles and practice of democracy. Whether we like or dislike democracy, whether we believe or not in its power, nevertheless the League of Nations is an attempt to constitute such a substitute. Not all-powerful, I admit; its weaknesses and deficiencies have been proven on several occasions since the war; but, nevertheless, it is an attempt to approximate the old ideal and practice of previous days when that power of arbitration was exercised. The League of Nations, with its council, is no more capable of stopping all wars than the old papacy was capable of doing so. Yet, it can stop some, as it did. We should strengthen the hands of the league as much as we can in all disputes. We should multiply all the instruments for peace by means of arbitration and common understanding, which may supplement the work of the League of Nations and prolong its usefulness. To that end I agree with this motion. But if we want it to be operative, all nations should decide to renounce that pagan principle which is no more in conformity with the democratic spirit of the League of Nations than it was with the spiritual ideals of ancient

Christendom: that the nation's pride, that the nation's pretensions, that the nation's spirit of exclusiveness should prevail over the good of the whole world. Nations should be prepared to submit questions-I will not say of internal policy because I agree entirely with the Prime Minister that that is not the business of other nations-but such questions of internal affairs, pretensions and national pride as come into conflict with the pride, interests and affairs of other nations; because, when that conflict happens, it ceases to be exclusively a national affair, it becomes international, just as the right of every individual to his own liberty ceases to be a right the moment it interferes with the liberty of another man who in turn has equal rights. The ignorance of this truth was one of the causes of many wars during the last century.

I mentioned a moment ago the Franco-Prussian war. The records in Germany are now available because of the revolution, and we are enabled to read what the statesmen of both countries did at that time. We know enough of French history to realize that the man who, for many years, was held responsible for the declaration of war against Germany, Emile Ollivier, was opposed to that war; but he was afraid of popular sentiment. As he said: I must now make popular a war which I abhor. Why was that necessary? Because national pride would not submit to any external arbitration.

The late Czar of Russia offered to submit to arbitration the difficulties which arose between his country and Austria. The records disclose that the ex-kaiser was just as opposed to war as was the czar. He knew that he would have to suffer just as much as would the czar, but there was the question of national pride. He thought that Austria would be opposed to submitting a question of that nature to an outside tribunal; and because of a narrow minded' view of national pride and interest this tremendous calamity occurred. Whether it be kings, statesmen, publicists, although in their hearts most of them were opposed to war, they actually launched upon the world this horrible curse which cost the lives of twenty millions of people and brought about the economic disasters with which this government, as well as all governments, are now confronted. National pride precluded a resort to outside arbitration.

This reservation seems to me to be the greatest obstacle to the carrying out of this agreement; but I hope my remarks have been accepted by the house as the remarks of one friendly to the object in view. I will sup-

Tariff Board

port this motion because I believe that every step in the right direction, although it may be too short or too slow, is a step towards the accomplishment of the end, not only by our country but by the world at large. In this, I agree with the hon. member for Quebec East (Mr. Lapointe).

The world is being tossed about by two currents, extreme nationalism and extreme internationalism. There is a right path between those two extremes, the path towards the truth. Surely upon God's earth there should be room enough for all races, for all nations and for all communities to develop their own genius and enjoy their proper freedom. The duty lies upon every nation to have that respect for others which they in turn expect to receive. That is what I call internationalism. Internationalism is not the eradication of national sovereignty and of national pride, it is the adaptation of the interests of all nations towards those of others. The general application of the golden rule is the only way by which peace and amity can be brought about between nations, as well as between individuals.

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Motion agreed to.


TARIFF BOARD

RESOLUTION TO PRESCRIBE THE CONSTITUTION, FUNCTIONS AND DUTIES AND PROVIDE FOR SALARIES


Right Hon. R. B. BENNETT (Minister of Finance) moved that the house go into committee to consider the following proposed resolution: That it is expedient to bring in a measure for the appointment of a tariff board, to prescribe the constitution, functions and duties of the board, and to provide for the salaries to be paid the members, officers and employees of the board. He said: Mr. Speaker, this resolution is antecedent to the introduction of a bill which will provide for the creation of a tariff board- by statute and not by order in council-to exercise the functions mentioned in the bill. This board will be comprised of three members. It will be a court of record, and in addition to carrying on the duties of a tariff board it will exercise certain powers which are now exercised by the officers of the Department of National Revenue as well as by officers under the combines act. Right Hon. W. L. MACKENZIE KING (Leader of the Opposition): Mr. Speaker, I do not wish to discuss this matter at any length at the moment, but I would point out to my right hon. friend that so far as the existence of a tariff board is concerned, its constitution, personnel and the provisions for carrying on its several functions were in existence at the time my right hon. friend came into office. This legislation becomes necessary solely by virtue of the fact, that he abolished the then existing board and now introduces a bill to create another board. The Prime Minister stated that the previous board had been appointed under an order in council. That is perfectly true but-


May 15, 1931