October 18, 1932

CON

George Spotton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPOTTON:

The hon. member lacked faith.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

No, I had good faith, but the actions were not mine; they were those of this government. There is of course danger in bad times that we will accept bad remedies, and I am afraid that the remedy that is offered now to the Canadian people is a bad one and is not a forward but a backward step. Of course the immediate and direct effect of the work of this conference and of these agreements is rather small. Even those who participated state that it is small. It cannot be otherwise. They claimed that they rather laid the foundation upon which future things will be built. This, naturally, is true of the evil as well as of the good consequences which might result from the agreements. What is

more important is the foundation, as they say, the principle of a new conception of imperial trade, as to which I have some arguments to offer.

I wish to consider this matter from three different points of view: First, from the point of view of this new conception of imperial relations as a result of this economic pact; second, from the point of view of the effects upon Canadian affairs from the practical results that may come to Canada, and, third, from the point of view of international trade, of the trade of Canada throughout the world, and more particularly on the eve of the international economic conference which is supposed to meet in December next.

As regards the new conception of imperialism I have many times expressed my views in this house, and I wish to repeat them today. The British commonwealth of nations is a free association of countries, based on freedom and liberty. They are united by the link of an allegiance to the same crown. But the best guarantee of the maintenance of the association is the complete and perfect freedom on the part of every portion of the commonwealth to devise, shape and carry on their policies, whether economic, political, defence or any other sort of policy, in the way that best suits their needs and wishes. The commonwealth is an idea, a soul, and this idea, this soul, is a stronger bond than any mercenary foundation. I dissent absolutely and profoundly from the view that the gain instinct is a good link for the purpose of maintaining the relations of the empire. When people consider their interests, when they are actuated by the gain they may derive from certain actions, there is some danger for the other social, political and other institutions. In this regard I desire to register a protest against certain words which have been uttered in the old country by some of the delegates . to the last Imperial conference. Mr. Neville Chamberlain, speaking at the Conservative convention in the old country a week ago, said that when he came to Ottawa he noticed that the bonds of empire had weakened and that something new must be devised for the conservation of those bonds. Lord Hailsham, even in Canada, said that new links of empire had to be created. I wonder where Mr. Chamberlain found in Canada any weakening of our bonds with the British Empire. What justification had he to say in the old country, or, indeed, anywhere, that Canada's loyalty had diminished in any way, shape or form?

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CON

Hugh Guthrie (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GUTHRIE:

Did he say that Canada's loyalty had diminished?

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

No, he said that he had noticed a weakening of the bonds-

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CON

Hugh Guthrie (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GUTHRIE:

He did not say on the

part of Canadians.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

-and that something new had to be devised. Well, Mr. Speaker, you know, we all know, it is not true that the loyalty of Canadians has diminished or that the bonds of Canada with the old country have been impaired. Yet, they make this the foundation stone, the mainspring of the advocacy of this treaty. It is not true, and as a Canadian I protest against the statement which has been made about the feelings of Canadians. Let me tell those gentlemen who used those arguments, whether in Britain or in Canada; O ye Tory loyalists, is that the limit of your imperial devotion? Are quotas, embargoes, dumping duties, the inspiration of your faith? Is a preference on bacon, butter, wheat or copper the price of your devotion to the empire? No, Mr. Speaker;

I believe that instead of being a link of empire the agreement before us contains within itself seeds of dissension for the future.

May I oppose to those opinions the views of Mr. Ramsay MacDonald as he expressed them two years ago; I am speaking of the Ramsay MacDonald before last year. During the conference of 1930, at a dinner given to dominions delegates at the Middle Temple hall he made a statement which appeared in the London Times as follows:

The Prime Minister said that his task at the conference had very frequently been to remind his colleagues that the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland had a dominion status and that they must be looked upon with the same respect as we showed in looking upon them. The United Kingdom would continue to have the equal status of a dominion in the commonwealth of British nations.

In these somewhat degenerate and materialistic days, when cash counted for a little too much, the commonwealth was sometimes regarded as something that could be founded purely upon materialistic considerations. He profoundly disagreed with that view. The hall in which they were met that night was not merely beautiful on account of its oak and its proportions. It had got a life of its own and a tradition and reverence of its own, and it had derived these from great events which had taken place within it. Those walls brought back to them the pageantry of our history and the dignity and romance of the service which had become the common inheritance of the British race. They embodied the achievements and the genius of our people.

By bringing the delegates to their hall the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple had shown them those flexible and intangible bonds which must never be broken if the commonwealth of the empire was to endure. Within the scope of those bonds there was ample room

[Mr. Cuthrie.1

for individual liberty and national development. Only in so far as they understood each other would they discover the mystical secret of an abiding unity against the rest of the world.

These are words which I would willingly make mine. I believe the bonds described there are stronger than those based on dollars and cents, on dumping duties or on those little animals called embargoes. Tariff controversies always lead to conflicts and frictions; everybody knows that. To make the dominions suffer disadvantages for the sake of Britain or to make her suffer disadvantages for the sake of the dominions is not the way to cement the empire. The suggestion may be made that none will suffer; it is enough for the purpose of my argument however, to indicate that empire tariffs are debatable and debated. Ministers of the crown have resigned because they could not accept those agreements, stating that they were not advantageous to their own country.

The dominions are becoming pawns in the political game of Great Britain. In my mind the most pernicious, the most damnable point in the matter is that in a way we are forced to take sides in the political conflicts of other countries in the empire. So much is that so that supporters of the right hon. gentleman opposite claim he has been instrumental in forcing Great Britain to change its fiscal policy and adopt one of protection. I do not believe that is so, but we are meeting that statement everywhere. Is that a wholesome condition? Is it desirable that one part of the empire, one statesman, one public man should control or force other parts of the commonwealth to change their fiscal policy? Surely that is not desirable. As I said, such a condition is but sowing seeds of friction and dissension for the future. Everybody knows there is nothing as dangerous as family quarrels. As Mr. Ramsay Muir wrote the other day, ''When families begin to quarrel about money matters, then the unity of the family is in very great danger." We have the reports of newspaper men, who surely knew what was going on, which would lead us to believe that this is an agreement which, as Sir Arthur Salter said, is born of fear. We are told that that is not so, but those who were in Ottawa at the time should know. It may be that this agreement was made in order to avoid what no agreement at all would have meant for the empire in the eyes of the world. This agreement reduces the political concession of free association into a closed corporation whose existence must depend on the continuance of earnings and the payment of dividends.

United Kingdom

When bad times come these imperial tariffs and trade treaties will be held responsible, because we know that tariffs and trade matters are always blamed for bad times. My right hon. friend knows that very well, as evidenced by his reference to the tariff of the late administration during the election campaign of 1930. At that time he blamed a condition which had only begun and was the result of a world crisis on the tariff schedule of the day. We have been criticizing his tariff policy of the years 1931 and 1932. I myself believe those policies have intensified the crisis in Canada. I have so stated; I said it in South Huron, in Maisonneuve and elsewhere. Is it a good thing, is it desirable, that instead of being purely national and purely Canadian we associate the empire with bad prices, with bad times, and with difficulties in our various countries?

Surely hon. gentlemen opposite should not be blind to the lessons of history. A few days ago when introducing the resolution, my right hon. friend opposite tried to call Sir Wilfrid Laurier to his rescue. As my leader stated yesterday, when in 1902, following the South African war, duties had been imposed on wheat in England, Sir Wilfrid Laurier asked the British government of the day to exempt the dominions from such duty. That government was defeated by the electors of Great Britain, and when the conference of 1907 was called a Liberal government which had removed the duties was in office.

In order that this other myth may be dissipated, I think, out of respect to the memory of Sir Wilfrid Laurier, I should read his words as they appear at page 411 of the proceedings of the conference held in 1907:

First of all, I expressed my own views, and I think I expressed the views of all here assembled, that nothing could be more detrimental to the existence of the British Empire than to force upon any part of it, even for the general good, a system which would be detrimental locally, or might be believed to be detrimental locally. For my part, I would have no hesitation at all in resenting any attempt made to force upon the Canadian people anything which the Canadian people would not believe in even for the broad idea of doing good for the whole empire. I think the best way of serving the whole is, by allowing every part to serve and recognize its own immediate interests. So far as, and as long as, the interests of the British Empire depend upon this and recognize this principle-that every one of those communities which are allowed the privilege of administering their own affairs by their own parliaments-the best way is to leave each parliament to decide for itself, and for the people whom it represents, what is best for that community.

I would like to read the whole quotation, where he said that because those duties had been removed since 1902 it was for the people of Great Britain to decide as to what policy they should follow under the circumstances.

During the conference of 1911, Mr. Speaker, one of the most notable sayings of Sir Wilfrid Laurier's great career, was "I represent a country which has no grievances." What a difference from the words uttered by my right hon. friend in 1930, when he summoned them there and then to do something with regard to the fiscal policies of the empire. I have in my hand the last political speech delivered by Sir Wilfrid Laurier a few days before his death before the Eastern Ontario Liberal Association. I will quote only these words:

This is our record and, as I said a moment ago, it was done in spite of all the opposition of the Conservative party. And upon what ground was their objection based?

He is speaking of the preference.

Simply upon the ground that we should have exacted preference for preference, that if we gave a preference to the goods of Great Britain, that country should give us a preference for our goods. That was not our policy. We said. "No, we are not going to bargain with the mother country upon matters of that kind."

Will the hon. gentlemen opposite leave the memory of Sir Wilfrid Laurier alone? They are strangers to his spirit, they fought him to the very last minute of his life, and we, who were his followers and his disciples will not allow them to use his great figure in support of their reactionary policies. Laurier was a Liberal of the English school, of the school of Gladstone and Asquith and Lord Grey and and others, and this agreement, whether in this country or in Great Britain will create doubt as to whether we adhere to the views of Gladstone, Asquith and Lord Grey or to the views of Chamberlain and the Prime Minister of Canada. The Prime Minister did not conceal his views on that matter. At the last session of the conference he made the closing speech, and I direct the attention of the house to these words, which you will find on page 157 of the report of the conference. The Prime Minister said:

It was forty-one years ago last January, when I was a very much younger man than I am now, that I participated in an election for my then professor, the Dean of Dalhousie Law School at Halifax. I recall, as vividly as though it were this moment, an extract which I read from a speech of the late Right Hon. Joseph Chamberlain. My mind has never wavered from the view that, in some form of economic unity would be found the true solution for many of the difficulties of our empire, and I do regard it as a matter of great satis-

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faction that I have been privileged, under Providence, to see these agreements executed today; for they constitute a definite advance towards closer empire economic association.

Further he refers to a general empire tariff plan. Then he says:

The Canadian government has therefore succeeded through reciprocal concessions in manifesting the principle that protection as we see it in this country can be used as an instrument of national policy to secure an equalization of benefits as between natural and manufactured products.

And he goes on, saying that this:

-is but a beginning-we have only laid the foundation-and that if this scheme of closer empire association is to endure and bring to each one of us the benefits we hope for, further action must be taken at a not-to-distant date.

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Some hon. MEMBERS:

Hear, hear.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

Yes, my hon. friends jeer, they are welcome to those jeers, this is good regular Tory doctrine. But surely they do not expect us to support it. We belong to another school, not to the school of Joseph Chamberlain or the Prime Minister of Canada, and because we belong to a different school I for one am opposed to this treaty and to the agreements which are now tabled in this house. I stand as Sir Wilfrid Laurier stood in this matter; if Great Britain accepts the principle of protection, if the electors of Great Britain willingly accept that fiscal policy, I believe we are entitled to a preference. But it is for them to decide freely, and I say that interference from any part of the empire in the fiscal or other domestic policies of the United Kingdom is a vicious principle and should not be approved. There is nothing for unification in that. It is merely disintegration which may come out of such a treaty.

As to the effects on Canadian trade, I am afraid time will not permit me to say much. I will reserve my remarks on that aspect to the time when the house reaches the committee stage on the resolution. Certainly there are some benefits; the undertaking by Canada not to alter the tariff from day to day by order in council, as has been done for the last two years, must be supported by us. But was it necessary to gather delegates from the antipodes to find that that was a vicious principle? We have been stating it in this house at every session for the last two years. Another benefit which I find in the agreement is the adoption to some extent of the principle of investigation, comparison of costs, and publicity when those things come before the tariff board. But unfortunately this is riddled with so many qualifications and conditions

that it will be possible for either party to climb out of their obligations in that respect. May I say too that it is queer that the British manufacturers should be given rights which the Canadian consumers have been refused.

About this tariff board, much of course will depend on the personnel of the board. In the United States-and as far as protection is concerned this government has taken many lessons from the United States-they have safeguarded it somewhat. The president appoints the members of the board, with the consent of the Senate, and he has to take half of them -from the political party which is not his own. There is some safeguard there. Here in Canada we have nothing of the sort. My right hon. friend will say that he will appoint impartial men, who will not be partisan. He said that when we accepted the radio bill last year; he gave the pledge that political considerations would not enter into the appointment of the members of that commission. Sir, the man who has been appointed to represent that portion of the Canadian community of which I am a member was a political organizer for the party opposite at the last election; indeed, he has been a Tory organizer in my province for both federal and provincial elections. What does he know about radio? He knows nothing at all. He spoke over the radio, abusing the Liberal party. I have nothing against him; I know him socially and he is a nice fellow, but he is a Tory organizer. They say he is a journalist, and of course journalists are qualified for almost anything. He had some interest in the foundation of a newspaper, but I do not think he ever wrote anything for it. He is a journalist as much as an organ blower is a musical artist. As I say, I have nothing against that gentleman personally, but his appointment is a challenge to public opinion in my province, and we cannot rely on any declarations that may be made as to who will be members of this tariff board which will make such important decisions in regard to the framing of our tariff. With regard to the preference on wheat, Sir Arthur Salter said it is a sham, and I agree with him.

My right hon. friend has tried very hard to establish an embargo against some countries. We have an article in the agreement which can be interpreted in two ways, and which has been interpreted in both ways. I do know that since that time Great Britain has extended credit to the Soviet for their trade in the old country, and Canada has seen Soviet oil come to this country. My right hon. friend seems satisfied with this article, but I do not

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IS, 1932


United, Kingdom think it represents what he wanted. He went there as a lion but he came out as a lamb. May I remind him of what Mr. William Har-court said to Lord Salisbury: "If you are to come out as a lamb it is better not to begin operations roaring and lashing your tail as a lion." Another apparent benefit contained in the treaty is the provision that Canadian surcharges will be removed when financial conditions permit. When we consider the loss of revenue that has resulted from the tariff policies of this government, this provision is really a joke. I am afraid my time is passing rapidly, but I should like to say a word with regard to the effect of this treaty on international trade. As we all know, unemployment is raging throughout the country. Millions of people have no work. Production in all countries has decreased by half or by a very large percentage at least. Ships are idle in world ports. Railway transportation is suffering, as we all know in this country. National budgets are being brought in showing heavy deficits. Fourteen nations in the world have defaulted the payment of interest on their bonds, and economists everywhere attribute this condition to the barriers that have been put in the way of trade between the nations of the world.


IND

Joseph Henri Napoléon Bourassa

Independent

Mr. HENRI BOURASSA (Labelle):

Mr. Speaker, this debate has been extremely interesting so far. As between the two parties I feel quite cool and disinterested, may I be permitted to pay my highest compliments to the two leaders on their masterful addresses?

Last night the right hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. Mackenzie King) intimated that the Prime Minister had made it impossible for the Liberal party to support these agreements because he, the Prime Minister, had stated that they were founded on Conservative policies; upon which the leader of the opposition retorted that the principles and doctrines followed by his party in the past precluded the Liberals from giving their approval. I do not want to be disagreeable, but perhaps it would be more prudent on the part of the right hon. gentleman not to speak too much of principles and doctrines in matters of tariff. I have had close connections with the Liberal party for many years past, and the conclusion is forced upon me that the only fiscal policy to which that party has adhered during the last forty years is to 53719-21

advocate free trade when in opposition and [DOT]to practise protection when in power.

Fortunately the right hon. gentleman has found a much safer and more clearly defined ground on which to base his opposition to these agreements, and in this respect I largely sympathize with his views, as well as with those expressed so eloquently and wittily this afternoon by my hon. friend the ex-Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe). I am sorry I missed the speech of the ex-Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Malcolm), which I am told was also very good. I am not surprised at that; because when the hon. gentleman decides to speak as a Liberal he is generally very eloquent.

Now, from my small, narrow platform as a purely independent member, I propose to look shortly at these agreements from three points of view: first, as instruments of trade in themselves, that is, with regard to their intrinsic value as trade treaties; second, at their consequences upon our inter-imperial relations, and third, at their effect upon our world trade and foreign relations.

On the first point, I want to clear my mind once more of one objection to the policy of my right hon. friend the leader of the opposition, not only as enunciated yesterday, but also as it was exemplified in the so-called Dunning budget. I hope he will allow me, as an old man, to tell him that there is something childish in his constant reiteration that there should be no bargaining between Canada and Great Britain. Surely my hon. friend has a sufficient knowledge of British and Canadian history, and of world history, to realize that all arrangements between governments, whether they are dealt with by treaties or by independent tariff changes in each individual parliament, are the results of bargaining or negotiations. You cannot have a bargain unless you negotiate, and you do not negotiate unless you mean to strike a bargain. Of course, the spirit in which the bargain is entered into is a different matter. Again, my knowledge of British history, as well as my hon. friend's knowledge, gained from his own family history, should teach us that to strike a good bargain with the British you have sometimes to talk pretty loudly. I am not, therefore, prepared to blame the Prime Minister for having somewhat bullied the delegation from the United Kingdom in these negotiations. Perhaps he carried it a little too far. It was well illustrated by the manner in which the negotiations were depicted by two members of the British delegation, not official members-at least not ministers of the crown-but two

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gentlemen who accompanied that delegation. One was a high official of the British government who appeared before the conference to discuss certain matters connected with trade returns. He had the audacity to challenge the figures presented to the conference by the Prime Minister of Canada, whereupon the right hon. gentleman pounced upon him to make him understand that no mere paid official of the British government ought dare to contradict the Prime Minister of Canada. Nevertheless, that gentleman, well informed as these English high officials usually are, reiterated that the figures presented by the Canadian Prime Minister were wrong and that, therefore, his conclusions were unwarranted. When he stepped out, someone thought it necessary, in the interests of Canadian courtesy, to apologize for the language which had been used by the Prime Minister. "It doesn't matter, I assure you," replied the Englishman; "indeed, I took it as a high compliment. The right hon. gentleman spoke to me as though I were one of his ministers." But perhaps the best illustration was given by another member of the English delegation. After the conference he went to Calgary, where he paid a visit to the Prince of Wales's ranch. There a splendid shorthorn bull was shown him, a prize winner, an admirable animal. With a feeling of "Canada First" pride, the attendants displayed this bull; but the sight of the Englishman, probably wearing a red necktie, and looking at the bull through his monocle, roused the animal's ire. At any rate, he came bellowing, fuming and foaming, and one of the gentlemen who were taking the English visitor through the ranch suggested that they had better leave. "No", said the Englishman, "I am not afraid; but there you have the very picture of Mr. Bennett leading the conference"; which shows that the diplomatic language of the Prime Minister was very effective, or at least quite notorious.

At the opening of the conference Mr. Baldwin had expressed the hope, and even suggested, that all arrangements should be made on the basis of lower tariffs. Now, as a matter of fact, and as pointed out by the leader of the opposition, out of 233 items in the tariff which are to be changed to make good the agreement, there is an actual increase in duty on 139 of these articles; which shows that the high protectionist government of Canada had the better of the Englishman, at least at first sight. But Mr. Stanley Baldwin, in spite of his modesty, in spite of his democratic pipe, is no fool. I believe he had already, two years ago, taken the measure of Canadian exigencies

and Canadian temperament as represented by its present Prime Minister or dictator. He well realized that the best way in which to strike a bargain-perhaps equally good to Canada and Great Britain-was to give ample satisfaction in the opening articles to Canadian vanity, and then take back quietly in subsequent articles what was necessary to safeguard British interests. And that was done. Articles 2 and 3 would lead1 us to believe that Canada controls the tariff of Great Britain, and that without the permission of our Mussolini the British parliament shall not alter its duties on imported goods. That is splendid. When the leader of the opposition, perhaps working up some fake indignation, reproached the Prime Minister with having forced the issue upon the British and therefore opened the way to inter-imperial differences, you could see that the right hon. gentleman felt quite highly complimented at the idea that he was ruling the empire. Well, if the Prime Minister goes toi the world conference with the idea that he is going to bully the world in that manner, he had better change his mind. Another man, not his equal, of course, but a man of some standing, Woodrow Wilson, tried that game at Paris in 1919; and for about a fortnight it appeared as though he was going to settle the affairs of the world. But with Clemenceau on one side, Lloyd George on the other, and Orlando in the background, he was soon foiled, and he came back to the United States a brokenhearted man, having lost the confidence of his own country as well as that of Europe. Why? Because in his American vanity he had conceived more than he could accomplish. In Canada, as well as in the other British dominions, we have acquired, I think, especially in Canada, a little too much cif American sufficiency; and although these methods may produce some results in our dealings with other British dominions, for a short time and on a limited scale, they will not help us in our dealings with other countries.

As regards inter-imperial relations, I will not pose as an apostle of imperialism. I must say that my heart did not bleed as I listened to the lamentations of my right hon. friend the leader of the opposition or to the eloquent expostulations of the ex-Minister of Justice, in their dread of seeing the British Empire fall to pieces. The British Empire is a pretty big institution and one of fairly long standing, and I have more than once expressed in this house the opinion that when our statesmen and rulers cease concerning themselves with the

United Kingdom

late of the empire, the empire will get along just as well. Perhaps if our statesmen in Canada concerned themselves more exclusively with affairs that are vital to this country, the empire would be better off.

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LIB

Ernest Lapointe

Liberal

Mr. LAPOINTE:

Will my hon. friend permit me? My words were only by way of answer to the argument that this treaty is a new link of empire. I don't believe it.

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IND

Joseph Henri Napoléon Bourassa

Independent

Mr. BOURASSA:

I know my hon. friend

does not believe it, and so I hope he will not make too much of a cry about the empire being disrupted. I have neither faith, hope nor love for the empire as it has been conceived in the last fifty years. I have strong faith and, in spite of the destructive jingoism of Tory policies, firm hope in the maintenance of the association of British nations on the basis of absolute freedom in matters of trade, in matters of policy and in matters of civil and military organization as well.

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An hon. MEMBER:

That is Liberalism.

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IND

Joseph Henri Napoléon Bourassa

Independent

Mr. BOURASSA:

No, it is not Liberalism

as practised in Canada in many instances. My first break with that party was brought about in 1899, because, for the first time in the history of Canada, it pledged the blood and money of the people for the cause of imperialism, and that by an order in council passed fifteen days before the calling of parliament. When there is less talk of the principles of Liberalism in defence of Canadian nationality in the past, when there is an effort made to make the future better than the past, then will that party regain the confidence of all true Canadians.

I don't believe in the so-called imperial economic unit. A man nearly as intelligent, a man as powerful as either Mr. Baldwin or the Prime Minister, Joseph Chamberlain, tried to make it true. A Canadian parvenu, now living in England, Lord Beaver-brook, is again trying to recast the British Empire into an economic unit. But he will fail, as anyone would fail even though he had the genius of a Bismarck and the iron hand of a Mussolini. Every endeavour of man against the laws of nature is bound to fail. The British association of nations-I hate the word empire-will last for some time provided it is given elasticity; but once an attempt is made to unify it, whether in matters of trade or policy, its existence is threatened. Why? The reason has been given or suggested by the hon. member for North Winnipeg (Mr. Heaps): it is too

broad and scattered. Time and time again the Prime Minister has stated that the British 53719-21 i

Empire covers one-fourth the area and includes one-fourth the population of the world. Apparently he is willing to rule that one-quarter of the races of the world, but he will not; no king, emperor or dictator can do it, either in the matter of tariffs or otherwise.

We hear of imperial policies in connection with tariffs; but does the house think that the

450,000,000 of people in India, who count for something in the 645,000,000, are going to accept this policy of imperial unity? No, they will not. Gandhi may be kept in prison, but he remains a moral force, an economic force also. Should he disappear, matters would be much worse than they are now. The house knows that neither Gandhi, nor any party or group in India, will submit to the idea of economic unity. The house knows that the Irish Free State will never submit to that, nor will the Union of South Africa.

What has been accomplished is not an imperial policy, or the creation, or even the beginning of an imperial tariff; it is simply the making of trade agreements between Great Britain and certain of the dominions, the result of which will tend to make London once more the distributing centre of the empire. It is an attempt to give back to the London banker, to the London broker and to the English manufacturer the lead and control they had fifty years ago. Sir John Macdonald and Sir Charles Tupper were most energetically opposed to and most efficiently instrumental in breaking up this control when they asserted and effected the complete freedom of Canada in matters of fiscal economy.

Let us take as an example the treaty with France. This treaty has been denounced, perhaps rightly so as it may not have been a good treaty, but I do not intend to discuss that phase. Figures were given out from Ottawa indicating the amount of trade with France while the official figures given out by the French consulate indicated that France had imported more Canadian goods than our figures showed as being sold. Why this difference? A large proportion of the goods shipped to France from Canada were shipped through England and appeared in our trade returns as exports to that country. They were purchased by the English in brokerage and sent to France; the English broker or merchant made his profit, and we lost out so much in our trade relations under the treaty. The same thing applies to Belgium, to Holland, to Germany.

Likewise, the British preference works against this country the other way. Some

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years ago I related to the house an instance told to me by a friend who had visited a factory in Belgium, I think. This factory was manufacturing goods for shipment to Canada which were being marked " made in England The Belgian manufacturer divided with the British trader the benefit of the preference so foolishly given by the Liberal government to so-called British-made goods. Actually we were giving a preference to goods made in Belgium, sent to England where about ten per cent was added to their value by finishing, covering, etc.; and then shipped by English traders to Canada where they benefited to the extent of thirty-three and a third per cent rebate of duty under the British preference. Because of the underhand arrangement made between the Belgium manufacturer and the English trader, this country was losing about twenty-five per cent in duty. The English labourer did not benefit while we lost the additional revenue. Once again we were the gullible victims of our old colonial subserviency. For these reasons I cannot accept the so-called preferential policy of the Liberal party any more than the imperial tariff policy of the Conservative party.

Some years ago, when my hon. friends to my left were sitting, as I did, on the other side, they proposed an increase in the British preference. It was properly refused by the then Prime Minister who now, as leader of the opposition, declares himself in favour of that policy. I then pointed out, and I repeat today, that an imperial preference, far from being an instrument in the lowering of tariffs, is in fact one of the most practical means by [DOT]which a high protective tariff is maintained. From a purely fiscal point of view, from a Canadian point of view and from the point of view of the maintenance of good relations between Great Britain and Canada-, I aim opposed to both policies.

In concluding these extemporaneous remarks I shall refer to the third aspect-the international aspect. When the motion just referred to was brought up by my hon. friends, then sitting across the house, they invoked the argument of better world trade relations. I reminded them that in 1926 some of the leading business men, economists and statesmen-not ministers-had memorialized the League of Nations on economic reforms. This memorial was prepared by no less an authority than Sir George Paish, a man in whom I have the greatest confidence. He was perhaps the only man who saw clearly the trend of events before the world reached its present state. During the days of orgy he had the courage to tell us that we were fast reaching the shoals of a very great crisis. Well, Sir

JMr. Bourassa.]

George Paish prepared the memorandum, and in that document as well as in other memoranda that have been presented, it was stated that high tariffs were among the greatest obstacles to the establishment of permanent peace in the world. But what did the French and Italian delegates point out before giving their assent to that assertion? Very rightly did they point out that the maintenance of preferences as between countries politically united-they did not name us, but of course they were designating us-was perhaps worse than the maintenance of high tariffs; because it was a concealed means to an end; it was the means through which a protectionist country, wanting to satisfy some of its consumers, made an appearance of lowering its tariff while, by maintaining and strengthening a preference, it was simply giving a weapon to the upholders of protection to maintain a high tariff as against the rest of the world. So, whether I take these agreements from the Conservative point of view or from the Liberal point of view, whether I take them in the light of our past relations or in the light of our future relations, I cannot accept them. I am not saying that I cannot accept them because they are bad bargains. I do not know. They may be far better than the leader of the opposition thinks. I am inclined to think they cannot have the good results which the Prime Minister and his friends anticipate. But that is not the main aspect. If they were merely individual bargains between this country and Great Britain, between this country and South Africa, they could be ended, either by negotiation before the five years, or at the end of the five years. But I am opposed to them and I dread their consequences because of the effect they will have upon our relations with the outside world.

The Prime Minister was extremely unfortunate in uttering those words which were quoted last night by the leader of the opposition, namely, that the result of these agreements would be to force foreigners to pay tribute to the British Empire. Of course, uttered only by the Prime Minister of Canada, important as Canada may be, big as the Prime Minister of Canada may be and even as big as he may think himself, those words would not go far. If radiated only within a certain distance from Regina or Calgary or Ottawa, they would amount to nothing. Even if reproduced in a few English papers, they would not go very far. But being given out to the world as a definition and an explanation of this policy, and as the initiation of a new program to be set up, maintained and

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developed, what is the result? It is that unless this definition is repudiated publicly and definitely by Mr. Baldwin and other representatives of the British Empire, the Prime Minister of Canada will have this other plume in his helmet:-he will, in appearance, have given the lead to the British Empire, but he will have compromised very seriously the position of Great Britain and of various parts of the British community towards the rest of the world. If he goes to the world economic conference with those ideas in his mind; if he is not prepared to retract that definition, in spite of his proclaiming the will and the power of one-quarter of the population of the globe, at his 'beckoning, upon his command, to force tribute on the rest of the world, there are still a few puny nations called the United States, Germany, France, Italy, Russia, China, Japan, Argentina, Brazil, who may not be quite as obedient and who may not be prepared to pay that tribute at the beck of the Prime Minister of Canada. What will be the result? It will be that the British Empire will have to step back and eat humble pie, or some of the other countries of the world will find, in their economic position, in their political and international associations, means strong enough to demonstrate to the Anglo-Saxon world that it is not the whole world.

I repeat; I am not a worshipper of any form of imperialism. I have combated English imperialism all my life. 1 have combated German imperialism all I could. I have opposed French imperialism when it took advantage of the great war to enlist my own compatriots on the side of France. Were these my last days in this parliament of Canada I would utter the same sentiments I expressed, thirty-three years ago, when a Liberal government launched us out on our first imperial venture, and I will state: Liberally-minded England, England the mother of political and economic liberty, England who has upheld, in spite of many crimes and misdemeanours, the great principle of social and political liberty, I love, I admire, and I am prepared to stand by. But England led by tories, by jingoes, by imperialists, who try, with the weapons of other nations, with the blood of other peoples, with the genius and money of their own people, to dominate the world, this I shall never countenance, either as a humble Canadian or as a citizen of that great community which has been remodelled on principles of liberty and free association, but which thank heaven-cannot succeed either in dominating the world or even in imposing upon its own sons and citizens tenets that could have

suited the slaves of Rome or the corporals of Prussianized Germany, but which cannot for any length of time suit free British subjects, whether they speak French or English, whether they worship God in a Catholic church or in a Protestant temple, who are united in a common sentiment, and that is attachment either by blood or by reason to those great principles of liberty and autonomy which I have served all my life and for which I hope to give the last days that remain to me of service to my country.

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CON

Henry Alfred Mullins

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. H. A. MULLINS (Marquette):

Mr. Speaker, I have listened for some days to statements made from the other side of the house. I have listened to the learned speech of the hon. member for Labelle (Mr. Bour-assa), to the speech of the hon. member for Quebec East (Mr. Lapointe) and to the speech of the right hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. Mackenzie King). As an agriculturist, who comes from western Canada, I wonder whether these speeches are not tainted with politics. They have found fault with the tariff. We have had a tariff since the days of confederation. I have lived under every prime minister from the days of confederation to the present, and there has been a tariff all that time. It seems t.o me that as regards the ins and the outs, it is the outs that have a great deal to say about the tariff.

There are men on this side just as well as men on the opposite side who realize the condition of agriculture in western Canada. There is no one over there who knows better than I do the appalling situation of agriculture, there is no one on this side of the house to blame for this situation. We accepted the situation when we came into parliament at a time when conditions were on the toboggan slide. I am not going to find fault with everything my hon. friends opposite did during the years they were in office. But when I listened to the leader of the opposition and noted how he evaded the question of the embargo against Canadian cattle, I felt I ought to say something. I would not be on my feet today were it not for the way hon. gentlemen opposite have side-stepped that matter. I wonder why the right hon. gentleman did not read the report which has been distributed concerning the importation into the United Kingdom of Canadian store cattle. I wonder why he did not read some of it to the house; why did he side-step it so effectively? He went all around it, knowing all the time that it represented the completion of over thirty years of work, thirty years of my life. One of the important missions I have had has been the lifting of the embargo, and I have

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lived to see it. I am satisfied. I am in this house for one principal reason-to see the finish of that embargo.

I wonder if the right hon. gentleman has read this report to which I have made reference. I wonder if he understands the significance of it. If this government had done nothing else, it should be credited, through their action in this respect, with making millions of dollars for the farmers of western Canada. The right hon. leader of the opposition gives Mr. Larkin credit for lifting the embargo in the year 1922. That is not fair, because Mr. Larkin did not come to England until March. I happened to be there at the time. The embargo was removed on December 15.

In 1915 Sir Robert Borden was crossing to England, and before he left I wrote him a letter asking him to take up the question of the removal of the cattle embargo so that Canadian cattle might gain entrance to the British Isles. I have before me a document, somewhat worn with use, which was sent to me by Mr. Bailie Watson, of Glasgow. It is as follows:

Mr. Bailie Watson introduced the deputation to Sir Robert Borden. He apologized for the large number present and said that their presence was an indication of the great interest taken in the subject. They represented between eighty and ninety municipalities throughout the country, as well as a large number of cooperative societies who were desirous of furnishing wholesome and copious meat supplies. They had been making strenuous efforts to have the embargo removed. They disputed the existence of disease in Canada, and they believed that for twenty years-the_ period during which the embargo had been imposed-there had been no disease. Speaking from the point of view of the Scottish farmers, he urged that they would during the coming season meet with great difficulty in finding store cattle to eat the plenteous crops that are being produced during the present season.

That was written in 1915.

Previous to that, in September of 1892, a boat named the Huronia arrived in Dundee. Upon that steamer was one animal which was unfairly taken away and condemned for disease. As a result, since the year 1892 there has been an embargo against Canadian cattle. Today, I am pleased to see the entire lifting of that embargo brought about by the agreement made by this government.

No noticS of this document seems to have been taken. I do not know why the cattle trade receives so little attention in the house, because in my view it is the most important branch of agriculture. In western Canada no man can succeed in selling his coarse grains if he does not drive them to market on four [DOT]Mr. Mullins.]

feet. It is not possible to do otherwise. He has to sell his grains with the aid of livestock. After thirty-two years the cattle trade is being accorded some help; there is now a market for the Canadian cow. Our cattle may enter the British market without restrictions. Previous to the year 1892 from 1,000 to 2,000 Canadian cows were sold each week in the Liverpool market. Today that market is again open to us, and it has been made available through the efforts of the government now in office in this House of Commons. They have brought about that favourable condition, and I believe they should be given credit. Why treat the matter lightly, as did the right hon. gentleman opposite?

I should like to remind the house of an experience I had while in England. On February 7, 1922, the Union of London Retail Meat Traders Incorporated-a very wealthy corporation in London-sent me the following invitation:

I am instructed by my president, Mr. John Edwards, to give you an invitation to the annual meeting of this union, which will be held at the Central hall, Westminster, on Monday the 20th instant, in the afternoon.

Our principal speaker will be Sir James Allen, of the New Zealand government, but Mr. Edwards thought that you would be willing to address the members on the "Embargo on Canadian store cattle" with special reference to its effect on the Canadian cattle industry, and also of the bearing which the United States tariff has upon the situation.

_ Sir James Allen is due to speak at four o'clock.

Trusting to reecive a favourable reply.

That was on February 7, 1922. I attended the meeting and spoke. Then, on March 9, I had the following communication from Northumberland concerning the Canadian cattle embargo:

I am requested by the committee to write and express their thanks to you for attending the recent meeting on this question in Newcastle, and supporting the resolution and for so kindly assisting by speaking and thereby contributing so much to the success of the meeting.

Then there is a further communication from Frank Devaney and Company of Birkenhead, England, thanking me for my activities in connection with the removal of the cattle embargo. We had the embargo removed because we had in England at that time a gentleman very active concerning our cattle markets. In that connection I shall read an article appearing in the Winnipeg Tribune of April 6, 1923. It is as follows:

A shipment of Canadian cattle, the first to arrive at Glasgow since the embargo was lifted, was unloaded yesterday. Canadian government officials were on hand. As a gallery play, a

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red tape was stretched across the gang plank, and the first steer to come up breasted the tape and broke it. This was to signalize, in the conception of some official not overburdened with brains, that Canadian cattle were breaking down the barrier of governmental red tape that had kept them out of Great Britain for thirty years. The _ leading steer showed more sense than the officials. It balked, and when prodded, stampeded, and not only broke the tape but bowled over several of the officials. Canadian cattle were not kept out of England by governmental red tape. They were kept out by the vigorous opposition of British agricultural interests to their entry. The embargo put in effect thirty years ago would still be in effect had it not been that during the war a binding promise that it would be lifted was secured from the British government. For that promise Canada has Hon. Robert Rogers to thank.

That is correct. The promise secured by the Hon. Robert Rogers, was the cause of the removal of the embargo. Had he not obtained that from those sitting at the war conference in 1917 Canadian cattle never would have got into the British market.

Now, Mr. Speaker, that is all I want to say in reference to the embargo. I have done my duty, I have lived through this thirty odd years, I have seen completed the bargain I made with Edward Watson on the dock in Dundee, that as long as I lived in Canada I would fight that question on this side, while he fought it on that side. Now through the efforts of this government it has become an accomplished fact. I am not playing politics, I am not speaking or looking to get back into this house. I have seen that for which I fought for a lifetime, nearly forty years, become an accomplished fact, and I thank the government for what it did in getting us into the British market on the same footing as Ireland. .

Some one in Ireland writes to the W inni-peg Free Press and threatens Canada if she interferes in this industry. Well, we have just as much right to be in the British market with that product as Ireland has. It is a valuable department of farming operations, just as valuable as grain-growing. Today I would rather have a good bunch of cattle than 28 cent wheat. A few days ago I was in the stockyards and saw some cars of cattle belonging to an hon. gentleman who occupied a seat on .that side of the house; he asked me sdbout. them, I said, " What are you bid? He said, " Five and a quarter. What is wrong?" I said, " Just this, that you are finishing where I would start." That is what is wrong. The system, and the mistakes made in the handling of cattle in this country, are causing most of the troubles on the farm. I recall the days around Guelph and Elmira and the western counties, the district of the

hon. member sitting here to my left; I think of that country, how it was rich with well-bred cattle. Canada was rich, the prairies were rich and we had prosperity. But what happened? There came along new men with new doctrines and new ideas. We raised good crops of wheat where we had mixed farming, we fertilized the land, gave them rich land. But new men came with new ideas. Cooperation, yes, I believe in it, but I do not believe in cooperation where you put a man at the head of it with putty under his hat instead of brains. You cannot have success in cooperation, Mr. Speaker, where you have not got ability at the head of it. They came along and asked the farmer to ship his cattle through new channels. " Oh yes, ship your cattle to me, I will send you back the money when I get through with them." He takes his pound of flesh, takes his charges, and when the returns come in there is very little for the farmer. I want to see the old days back, when the cattle buyer came into the field and said to the farmer, "What do you ask for that bunch of cattle?" The farmer put his price on them, they made a bargain, closed the deal and the buyer paid for them and took them away. I do not want to see the farmer sending a bunch of cattle to some incompetent salesman to be sold in the stockyards at a ridiculously low figure. Neither do I want to see him ship his grain as he ships now. The hon. member for Mackenzie (Mr. Campbell) came to me when he was promoting the pool, I felt it was a good thing and might help the farmer, and I did my duty in this house towards the farmer and towards the pool. But, God help them, they got men at the head of it that did not know much about wheat, not very good business men, and it went to pieces. And the same thing has happened in respect to cattle as in respect of grain, you have had all these new schemes and new ideas, they have been tried out; now let us have back the old days, the old conditions that we had years ago, and ship our grain and do our business through the right channel; do not have the initiative taken away from you either in your cattle or in your grain. The farmer does not need a guardian. My observation of the farmer is that he is just as clever as any man if given a chance. But he is led by spell-binders who travel over the country-I was going to say lightning-rod agents, but I did not like to say it for I thought of one who occupies a seat in the legislature in Manitoba, sits on the treasury benches, who travelled all over my constituency getting the farmer into various pools and various methods of marketing his

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grain, but when he saw danger ahead he slipped into a front bench seat, and is probably in a better position by having done so.

There is no country in the world as rich as the western prairie provinces. I love your little Ontario farms too, but my heart bleeds when I see the struggles taking place on the prairie at the present time, see conditions such as are found there today. Speculation? Yes, they have speculated, it has ruined a good many farmers, and I am sorry for some of them. They went wrong through speculation, buying stock on margin. Think of it, farmers trusting to those manipulators to sell them stocks, the illegitimate children c*f bonds and preferred securities of corporations, and they loaded the farmer up. I am sorry that there are so many in my constituency in that position. Some of them gave me documents to bring down here to find if there was any value to them, when I got them here I found they were worthless.

Many hon. members on the opposite side of the house claim to be champions of the farmer and seem to think there is no one on this side who knows anything about the condition of agriculture. But we realize it, I realize the condition of the farmers in Canada. I can assure this house, Mr. Speaker, that every morning when I get up I try to think of something I can do that day to aid agriculture and the men struggling on the farms. This government with which I have been associated has done more to aid agriculture than was done by hon. gentlemen opposite who preceded us. I am reminded of the effort made to put pure bred sires out through the country;

I am reminded that this government restored that policy, and I remember the day when my hon. friend from Melville (Mr. Motherwell) hit live stock in western Canada a crushing blow by cancelling that policy. I told him to put back all the pure bred sires he could get, and to weed out all the scrubs throughout the country; I told him to get the farmers into mixed farming and to assist them to get new markets, but he did not do so. Then I am reminded of the time when the Liberal government made it appear in the press that they were going to get the farmer cheaper freight rates. I have before me a document showing that I paid the Canadian Government Merchant Marine $25 a head to ship cattle to Dundee. Today this government has made it possible for a farmer to ship cattle at $10 per head. I know there are some good, honest men opposite; why do they not say something has been done, and give some credit to this government? The British market has been opened to our cattle, and I believe that fact

should be made clear. Even the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Stevens) did not mention it last night; of course his time was limited, but I was waiting for him to come to this point. When he did not do so I felt it my duty to let the country know that we have the freedom of the British market, secured through the efforts of this government.

We have been told that conditions have been getting worse since we took office. The toboggan was starting down the slide then, and ever since we came into power we have been bending every effort to improve conditions. I have heard all about the gold standard; I have tried to study that problem but I will not take up the time of the house to discuss it. I do not want to start a printing press and run off a lot of money unless we can get out of debt in New York. I do not want to see a premium of fifteen per cent to twenty per cent paid on our bond coupons;

I want to see our conditions improved by practising economy and working hard, and if I can do anything here the question of politics will not enter into it at all. I do not care whether I occupy this seat another minute. I paid all the expenses of my campaign out of my own pocket.

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An hon. MEMBER:

What was the cost?

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CON

Henry Alfred Mullins

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MULLINS:

I will not tell the amount. Certain things have been mentioned by hon. gentlemen opposite, and I just wanted to mention that fact. Every dollar of my election expenses was paid by myself from my own money.

Now I must conclude, Mr. Speaker. We are losing confidence in each other, and when we get back that confidence and learn to trust each other I think this old Canada of ours will get back on her feet. I have been through many depressions in this country; we came out of them without very much trouble, though I will admit that this depression is lasting longer than any other depression in my memory. That is not due to the tariff.

I do not see why, when we are making an honest endeavour to build up the empire, hon. gentlemen opposite find fault with us.

I cannot help thinking that their opposition is tainted with party politics; I cannot believe it is prompted by any honest desire to help Canada. If conditions were reversed no party politics would hold me from standing up and voting for agreements such as these.

There is one matter to which I should like to refer before taking my seat. The statement was made that the farmers of western Ontario were snubbed when they came to Ottawa to see the Prime Minister. I happened

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to be here at the time; I have before me the correspondence that passed between the Prime Minister and the hon. member for Southeast Grey (Miss Macphail) and Mr. Morrison, and I say emphatically that the farmers were not snubbed but were treated by the Prime Minister as fairly as any man could treat them. It is true that they came here and asked the Prime Minister to meet them at the coliseum, but the delegates to the Imperial conference were arriving and the Prime Minister was extremely busy. I do know that he agreed to meet a committee of that delegation and waited for an hour or more, but they did not come, so I do not see how the charge can be made that they were snubbed.

I am not going to take up more of the time of the house, Mr. Speaker, I will conclude by saying that I want to see agriculture on its feet again, and it can only come back through the production of live stock and by having farming conducted in a proper way.

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Edward James Young

Liberal

Mr. E. J. YOUNG (Weyburn):

Mr. Speaker, in introducing the resolution now before the house the Prime Minister expressed the hope that it would not be opposed from this side because, he said, these agreements were drawn up in the interests of Canada and of the empire. He hoped that we would forget party feelings and not do anything to harm Canada or the empire. Let me answer the Prime Minister in his own words. We have studied these agreements; we are still studying them, and we have come to the honest conclusion that if they are carried into effect these agreements will not work to the benefit of Canada or of the empire but will be injurious to the trade of Canada, the trade of the empire and the trade of the world. I appeal to the Prime Minister, in his own words, not to force these agreements through the house because we are opposing them from this side in the interests of Canada. I ask him to forget the fact that these agreements originated in his own party and in his own head, to forget that they are his own pet children, and to think not of his party advantage but of the interests of Canada and of the empire. I ask him to think of the recovery of Canada and of the empire from the depression in which we are at the present time, and not to force these agreements through the house. Everyone is agreed that the trouble in the world today is that the channels of trade have been blocked. The Prime Minister himself has used words to that effect, and the test that we must apply to these treaties is this: Will they or will they not remove the obstacles to world trade that now exist? Will they or will they not open up the channels that are now

blocked, as the Prime Minister himself has said, and allow trade to flow and prosperity to return to the world? If these agreements will have the effect of lessening the barriers to trade that now exist, then we should support them. If, on the other hand, the effect will be to increase those barriers, then I say we have only one duty on this side and that is to oppose them.

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An hon. MEMBER:

On both sides.

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October 18, 1932