March 10, 1936


The house resumed from Friday, March 6, consideration of the motion of Mr. Mackenzie King: That it is expedient that parliament do approve the trade agreement entered into at Washington on the 15th day of November, 1935, between His Majesty's government in the Dominion of Canada and the government of the United States of America, and that this house do approve of the same, subject to the legislation required in order to give effect to the provisions thereof.


CON

Ernest Edward Perley

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. E. E. PERLEY (Qu'Appelle):

Mr. Speaker, when the house adjourned Friday night I had just finished citing two opinions on this treaty, the one, as to how it might affect the United Kingdom agreement; the other, that of President Roosevelt as to how it would benefit the primary producers of the United States of America to get an entry into our Canadian market. Many opinions could be cited with respect to how it will affect our industry in Canada. However,

I have not time in the few minutes at my disposal to do this; I prefer to take the considered opinion and the first hand knowledge of hon. members who have already spoken, particularly from this corner of the house, as to how the agreement may affect industry in their particular constituencies. If it operates as they believe it will, I am fearful that if industry is ruined in the east it will affect us very considerably in the west. From the experience of the past five years we know how closely the east and the west are bound together and we appreciate how interdependent they are.

When the agreement goes to committee we shall likely get some detailed information. I -regret that so far the speeches from the government side have not given us much detailed information with respect to how it will affect us in many particulars. In that connection I might just mention the speech made by the hon. member for Melville (Mr. Motherwell). This venerable gentleman usually takes his full quota of time, speaking especially to questions affecting agriculture; he is considered an authority on agriculture because of the experience he has had, and we expected something from him. But he took only twelve minutes in speaking on this important treaty, giving us a jocular tirade against protective tariffs. Then we had the hon. member for Saskatoon (Mr. Young); he took his time in giving us a dissertation on the tariff, but he did not refer

Canada-U J5. Trade Agreement

to one single item of this agreement by which the producers in his constituency would be benefited. Then we had the Minister of Finance (Mr. Dunning). We were watching and waiting for him to say something, because his department has to do with trade, and in some particulars this agreement is really a budget, as it deals with so many changes in the tariff. We expected from him some details as to how it would benefit the trade of Canada, but what did we have? We had thirty minutes of an attack on the leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett) which wound up in a dramatic conclusion, so to speak, that fell as flat on the ears of his followers as it did on the ears of those on this side. Certainly we had nothing from him.

I am going to make one comment by way of reply with reference to the speech of the "Minister of Finance. It will be very brief. It is to this effect: It is true that many of the things in the treaty were based on the memorandum submitted in November, 1934, but to say that the agreement signed was in its terms the same as the leader of the opposition tried to get, just because both were based on the same memorandum, is not according to fact, is certainly incorrect, and grossly unfair. I think that is a fair statement.

In the minute or two that is left I desire to make a few observations with respect to the advantages and disadvantages of the agreement as I have tried to set them out. First let me refer to the advantages. I admit that the outlet for a limited number of cattle is a distinct advantage, but here, Mr. Speaker, may I remind you that we should take into account the fact that a considerable part of the quota was crossing the boundary before this trade treaty came into effect, and also the fact that the prices in the United States for cattle have decreased considerably. Second, there is a slight reduction in the price of automobiles. On the class and kind that the farmer has to purchase, the Chevrolet and the Ford, it amounts to fifteen and in some cases to twenty dollars. But it is probable that we should have got those decreases in any case. Then there is some assistance to the lumber interests in British Columbia. We will admit that there is certainly some benefit to lumber. Those are the three advantages.

Now, as to the disadvantages, there has been a sharp increase in the price of farm implements. It may or may not be the result of this treaty, but the fact is there, and I would just remind the house that every time there has been a reduction in rMr. E. E. Perley.]

the duty on agricultural implements there has been an increase in price. Certainly the reduction in the duty on United States pork coming into Canada from five cents to If cents is a distinct threat to the hog industry in Canada. The increased price of lumber as a result of this treaty is already in force in Saskatchewan-an increase of $2 per thousand feet. It is a distinct hardship on the farmers of that province, as lumber is their chief available material for building.

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LIB

Malcolm McLean

Liberal

Mr. McLEAN (Melfort):

May I ask a

question at this point? Does not that increase in the price of lumber, if there is an increase, improve the condition of the lumber workers of Saskatchewan?

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CON

Ernest Edward Perley

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. PERLEY (Qu'Appelle):

The amount

of lumber produced in the northern part of Saskatchewan is very limited. It might help the workers a little, and as I have said, it is an advantage to the lumber industry of British Columbia. But to a hundred thousand farmers in Saskatchewan who have to buy lumber it is certainly a disadvantage, and we are looking at this thing from the broader standpoint.

This treaty is dangerous because it imperils the whole structure underlying the United Kingdom trade agreement. Great Britain is now buying our primary products, the flow that was turned back into Canada following the Hawley-Smoot tariff. In the United Kingdom we have a market of one-quarter of the world's population. There is also the danger of an adverse trade balance being created. I am not going to take time to discuss that, but we know it is a dangerous situation. Just here I might state that according to the trade returns for the month of January, the first month during which this treaty was in operation, there was a reduction of $400,000 in the sale of our farm products to the United States. That is something to keep in mind.

I understand that the hon. member for Moose Jaw (Mr. Ross) is going to follow me; he said so last night, as some hon. members may remember. I should like to ask the hon. gentleman to point out to this house one particular in which this treaty helps the farmers of his constituency or of the province of Saskatchewan to sell one bushel of wheat or other grains, one pound of dairy products, one hog or one pound of pork products; and the hon. gentleman might also explain the increase in the price of agricultural implements. There is also the danger that we may lose our home market, which consumes ninety-five per cent of our primary products other than wheat. I happen to be a member of the

Canada-U.S. Trade Agreement

committee considering the election and franchise act. A proposal was made before that committee the other day that each elector in Canada should have two votes, one for the party and one for the member. If I had three votes on this occasion I might cast one in favour of the treaty because of its advantages, but I would cast two against it because of its disadvantages.

In conclusion, Mr. Speaker, I should like to say that I am not concerned with what Macdonald or Laurier did, nor am I concerned with what Bennett or King did. I am not concerned with the past; I am concerned with the present, and in connection with this agreement I am concerned as to what it will mean in the future to Canadian industry, Canadian agriculture and Canadian labour. I do not think we have had sufficient information from the government benches to vote intelligently on this treaty, and certainly no good reasons have been advanced as to why we should vote for it. Therefore I consider it my duty, representing an agricultural constituency in the great agricultural province of Saskatchewan, to vote against the agreement as it stands at the present time.

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LIB

Daniel Alexander Cameron

Liberal

Mr. D. A. CAMERON (Cape Breton North-Victoria) :

Mr. Speaker, I am not the hon. member for Moose Jaw, though I happen to follow the hon. gentleman who has just taken his seat. I am not familiar with what is of immediate concern to the constituency of Moose Jaw, but for a few moments I should like to state some of the reasons why I find it my duty to support this resolution. I should like to preface my remarks with the statement that I do not think I would serve any useful purpose by going over the various items in the schedules in detail. That has been done splendidly by the right hon. Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) from the point of view of the government, and I am free to say that from the point of view of those opposing the treaty the presentation made by the right hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett) left nothing to be desired. I listened with a great deal of interest and attention to the speeches of both right hon. gentlemen as they expounded their different points of view' with regard to this treaty. I propose to refrain from entering into any detailed discussion of the items for another reason which is abundantly clear; that is, we will have ample opportunity to present our views as each item is being considered in committee. I am therefore going to content myself with offering a very few general observations.

First, Mr. Speaker, I propose to deal for a few moments vdth two or three of what

appear to me to be the outstanding criticisms of the agreement that has been submitted. The first point which strikes one is that much of the criticism of this agreement w'as directed to the fact that apparently it was consummated in too short a time and on an occasion when, according to the public press, the Prime Minister was taking an extended holiday after his strenuous work during the campaign preceding the election which took place October 14. Veil, Mr. Speaker, far from that being a reasonable criticism of this trade agreement, which in my opinion holds such splendid potentialities, carrying advantages to this country which are bound to tell on the general trade and industry of Canada, I regard it as a splendid act on the part of the Prime Minister that he should take the time, so soon after coming to office, to consummate an agreement the negotiations for which had been begun by the late government.

The second criticism was that he completed the negotiations leading up to the agreement not only during a holiday season but in such a rapid fashion that it was impossible to give the various details of the agreement that consideration they should have received. If the Prime Minister had come to the consideration of this agreement as a new man, without previous knowledge of trade conditions in this country, I could understand there might be some considerable force in a criticism of that kind. But surely those who make it fail to realize that the Prime Minister has given his whole life to the study of international questions, trade matters, and particularly trade questions as they affect the welfare of Canada. It was not any new venture for the Prime Minister to take up the negotiations for this agreement as he found them on entering the office. It was a matter with which his study and experience had made him familiar; he had held the office of prime minister before, and had first hand knowledge of the probable effect of an agreement of this kind upon the trade of this country as W'ell as upon our relations with other parts of the empire.

Another criticism made from this side of the house, particularly I think by the hon. member for Leeds (Mr. Stewart), was that the agreement is likely, in fact he practically went as far as to say it is almost certain, to affect injuriously the traffic on our great railway systems. The hon. member said that our railway systems were built for east and west traffic, and that if this agreement is ratified it is bound in its ultimate results to develop north and south railway traffic to the injury of our railways. My answer to

Canada-UJ3. Trade Agreement

that criticism is that if the agreement now under consideration will result in injury to our railway traffic, the agreement contemplated by the late government would be bound to have the very same effect. In fact, if we believe the criticisms from this side, it would have a still more injurious effect upon the railway traffic of this country. But I am not fearful of any such result. In my judgment the lowering of trade barriers between the two countries will in the end prove so beneficial to the general trade of the country that instead of our railways suffering through the consummation of this agreement they will be materially benefited. I am not afraid to venture that prophecy.

A third criticism, in which I am bound to admit there is some force, is that this agreement should have included in its scope certain ^ fish products which unfortunately are not in the schedule. Coming from a county where fishing is a very large industry I am bound to say I regret that the Prime Minister was unable to secure the inclusion on proper terms in that agreement of the various grades and classes of fish. But as the leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett) has pointed out, in negotiating an agreement certain fundamental principles must be kept in mind, and if in order to include fish it would have been necessary to give concessions on something else the result of which concessions would have been injurious to this country, then I am bound to say that the Prime Minister exercised good judgment and good statesmanship in not making such concessions in connection with another industry in order that fish might be included. This is a country for which the formulation of generally acceptable trade policies is difficult, on account of our geographical position and climatic conditions. A general policy which in its essence may be beneficial to the whole country may in specific instances work a hardship on some localities or individuals. The best any person charged with the responsibilities of office can do is to make an honest attempt to accomplish a general agreement which, taken by and large, or, to use the expression used by the leader of the opposition the other day, "on balance," will mean the greatest good to the Canadian people as a whole. Notwithstanding the pessimistic outlook of the leader of the opposition, I believe that on balance this agreement is bound to work in the general interest of the majority of people of this dominion.

The other day the hon. member for Royal (Mr. Brooks), speaking to this resolution, was particularly critical because the agreement does not include fish. But if the in-

elusion of fish involved increased competition of American coal, then coming as I do from a constituency in which the coal trade is a very important factor, I commend the Prime Minister on the fact that under this agreement our coal industry will not be subjected to such increased competition in the Canadian market. In this connection I point out that in the conclusion of any agreement it is impossible for the wisest statesman to foresee all the results at the time it is entered into. There is a peculiar situation developing at the present time in connection with coal in what we call the St. Lawrence market, the Quebec market. I think it may be reasonably said that it is a direct result of the Ottawa agreements, and that the product of the Nova Scotia mines is at this time being subjected to keen competition from coal produced under peculiar circumstances in the British Isles. British coal is entering Canada under circumstances approaching those which would justify the imposition of dumping duties, and I am informed on reliable authority that it is competing with Nova Scotia coal to such an extent that it is likely in the present year to displace from 400,000 to 500,000 tons. I am sure those who represented Canada in the negotiation of the Ottawa agreements never anticipated any such result. However, that is the result facing the coal trade in eastern Canada.

Last Thursday evening the hon. member for Royal (Mr. Brooks) spoke as though the provisions respecting swordfish were a matter of minor concern. Well, it is true that the trade is not very great, but I suggest it is worthy of consideration. The provisions respecting this commodity represent a concession to Canadian fishermen which will mean something in dollars and cents. The trade is growing. Fifteen or twenty years ago along the coast of my constituency the taking of a swordfish was considered an event, but now a substantial fleet of fishermen is engaged in this pursuit for a month or five weeks each year. According to the bureau of statistics, last year we exported 14,780 hundredweight of swordfish to the United States, at a market price of S154,421. The saving on that item alone will mean a distribution of about $8,000 among the fishermen along the coast of Cape Breton and other parts of Nova Scotia. This may be a small item, but it represents a substantially greater amount of money to be distributed among men engaged in a somewhat hazardous occupation.

I have noticed a considerable amount of ill advised propaganda against the trade agreement. No doubt some of it is done through

Ccinada-U.S. Trade Agreement

ignorance, but some of it, I am afraid, is through design. In certain journals published in the maritime provinces the statement appeared last week that as a result of the trade treaty we would lose our trade with Bermuda. That was the statement which appeared in the Truro News of March 7.

I am not in a position to say whether there is any basis for that statement or not, but it is an interesting fact, that, according to the bureau of statistics, in January, 1935, no potatoes were imported into Canada from Bermuda, whereas 658 hundredweight were imported in January, 1936. Apparently the propagandist of the Truro News is so anxious to score a point against the treaty that he has neglected to take the elementary precaution of ascertaining whether the situation in Bermuda was induced as a result of the trade agreement or as a result of conditions over which no government has any control. Possibly the extracts read by the hon. member for Royal from journals published in New Brunswick have just as little foundation in fact as that published in the Truro News. At all events they appear to be of a similar class and were no doubt designed for similar purposes. I am paying some attention to the observations of the hon. member for Royal, because he undertook to speak for the maritime provinces. That may be a large order, but the fact remains that he attempted to do it. Perhaps his undertaking was forced upon him by circumstances over which he had no control.

The hon. member suggested that the treaty did not benefit the lumber trade of the maritime provinces, but he admitted it was beneficial to the trade in British Columbia. Hon. members know that British Columbia is a better lumber producing country than any part of the maritimes, and we know that competition from British Columbia is felt in the markets of the old country. The United Kingdom has always offered a market to the lumber dealers of the maritime provinces. To the extent that the opening of the market in the United States will form a nucleus of a market for the products of British Columbia, to that extent will it ease the pressure on the market in Great Britain, thereby making it easier for lumber produced in the maritimes to hold its own in that market. Indirectly, if not directly, the trade agreement will be a considerable benefit to the lumber producers of the maritime provinces.

In my opening observations I indicated that I was not going to speak at length. I take the position that every move on the part of the government to remove shackles from trade is a

move in the right direction. I am not speaking in a disparaging way about tariffs; rather I am associating myself with leading bankers and economists when I say that to the extent that we wisely, with prudence and with care remove shackles from trade, to that extent we are making it possible for Canadian producers and consumers to prosper in their respective callings.

I accept the doctrine propounded by Right Hon. Stanley Baldwin, who stated here in 1932:

What then should be the first aim of this conference? It should be to clear out the channels of trade among ourselves. For that purpose we need not measure too closely or too exactly the relative value of preferences given and received.

If we never negotiated a treaty unless we were able to say that the advantages were all on our side, that we had the best of the bargain all through, then we would never negotiate a treaty at all. I am not impressed with the quotations which have been made by certain hon. members from the remarks of Mr. Cordell Hull, the Secretary of State of the United States, and others in that country, who are in favour of this agreement. If we listened to what the former president, Mr. Hoover, and those associated with him, have to say, we would be convinced that Canada was receiving everything without giving anything in return. Those of us on this side of the line who support the agreement undertake to point out its benefits, while those who oppose it undertake to criticize it. In the latter case they base their arguments upon the fact that those in the United States who are in favour of the agreement point out the benefits accruing to the United States. Each critic is just taking a one-sided view of the agreement, but I prefer to look at it from the broad standpoint. I realize that we could never get an agreement without making some concessions.

I hold to the view that an expansion of trade will solve to a large extent the many difficulties with which we are confronted today. I do not believe we will get out of this depression or be able to take care of our unemployment by raising our trade barriers and confining our trade within ourselves. I believe that the opening up of new trade avenues will go a long way towards solving the unemployment problem. I listened with a great deal of attention to the hon. member for Greenwood (Mr. Massey). He gave to the house a picture of the terrible condition in which the youth of the country find themselves. He claimed that the youth of the country were not given an opportunity to learn how to work, and in many cases were not given an opportunity to work at all. I

Ccinada-UJS. Trade Agreement

am not one of those who believe that trade alone will solve all our problems, but I believe that to the extent to which we open up avenues of adventure and new lanes of trade, so will we make it easier for new industries to open up and for agriculture to expand. In this way avenues of employment will be made available to the class to which my hon. friend referred.

I commend most heartily the courage of the Prime Minister in dealing with this problem as soon as the opportunity was afforded. I should like to close by quoting the words said of one of Scotland's heroes:

He either fears his fate too much,

Or his deserts are small,

That dares not put it to the touch To gain or lose it all.

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CON

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. N. J. M. LOCKHART (Lincoln):

Mr. Speaker, it is not my intention this afternoon to enlarge to any extent upon the many presentations that have been made in connection with this trade agreement. I have listened with a great deal of interest to the arguments that have been presented by both sides of the house. I listened to the presentation of the right hon. the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) and also that of the Minister of Finance (Mr. Dunning). We have been told by those on the government side that the negotiating of this agreement has been a marvellous achievement, and we have been told also that the agreement had its origin in the leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett). The leader of the opposition is given a certain qualified credit for having brought about this agreement. It has been said that the discussions he had with officials of the United States had considerable to do with the perfecting of the treaty, and he is given that much credit. However, in the next breath he is twitted with the fact that he was not able to bring the agreement to its final stages, that it required the ability of the present government to make this agreement an actual reality. As I say, all this has been very interesting to listen to.

It has been intimated by the Prime Minister that the agreement might not be all that was desired, that there are certain doubtful phases. I am entirely in accord with the statement with reference to the doubtful character of this agreement. The Prime Minister says that the agreement will assist our railroads and increase our purchasing power. He says it will bring us out of the depression in which we have been for a number of years. I believe this is the gist of what has been said by the right hon. gentleman and what is recorded in Hansard. I noted that the right hon. gentleman did not go back very

far in tracing the causes of the depression; he did not go back to 1929 when he had so much to do with it. Hardly any reference at all has been made to all the warnings that were given by the right hon. leader of the opposition before 1929. They are all recorded in Hansard and have been rehashed over and over again in the daily press, so there is no necessity for my repeating them here; nevertheless they are facts which we should all do well to bear in mind.

The Minister of Finance, in approving the agreement, pointed out that if it requires correction in any particular the government can apply the remedial measures which are necessary. I am very glad, Mr. Speaker, that he admits there is a possibility of that, because I say to hon. gentlemen in this house who represent constituencies similar to mine that if I do not miss my guess there will be many remedial measures required to make this agreement effective. But I wonder if hon. gentlemen opposite have been assured by the government that these remedial measures actually will be applied. Personally I have heard no such assurance up to the present time. The only thing I have heard in that respect was the rather evasive comment of the Minister of Finance that remedial measures were a possibility.

We have listened to some very able presentations of arguments against this agreement by hon. gentlemen on this side of the house. I might mention the hon. member for Da'n-forth (Mr. Harris), the hon. member for Dufferin-Simcoe (Mr. Rowe), the hon. member for Davenport (Mr. MacNicol), the hon. member for Yale (Mr. Stirling), the hon. member for Peel (Mr. Graydon), the hon. member for Lanark (Mr. Thompson), the hon. member for Qu'Appelle (Mr. Perley), and many others. They have dealt with the interests of the basic and secondary industries of this country and have pointed to many considerations which I think the government would do well to ponder seriously. I know that the case which they have presented has made a very definite impression on my own mind. Are hon. gentlemen opposite turning a deaf ear to all the presentations from this side of the house, or are they seriously considering them? I wonder if they think that all the brains of the house are confined to one little group sitting on the other side.

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

Hear, hear.

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CON

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LOCKHART:

That "hear, hear" is

typical of the kind of criticism of hon. gentlemen opposite. But surely they must admit that men who have had long experience in government, and are just as conscientious as

Canada-UJS. Trade Agreement

they are, are qualified to pass fair and constructive criticism on a measure of this importance.

We have been told that the leader of the opposition should receive a great deal of credit for his part in negotiating this agreement, but hon. gentlemen opposite say that he could not conduct the negotiations to the point of signing the agreement. I think the leader of the opposition has sufficiently well established his own position with respect to the agreement, and surely any intelligent member of this house will appreciate the explanation the right hon. gentleman has given of his part in those negotiations. And surely if we want to look at -the matter in an unbiased way, what the leader of the opposition has said should have some weight when we are attempting to come to a conclusion.

To me as a new member of the house the attitude of hon. gentlemen opposite seems to have been one of cheering and gloating over the fact that this government has been able to consummate this agreement. Their attitude is: You fellows over there had your

chance-why didn't you make an agreement? From the benches opposite we have received very little comment that has been constructive, beyond the presentation of the Prime Minister and the evasive remarks of the Minister of Finance.

I come from the Niagara peninsula, which is of fairly good repute, I think, throughout this dominion, and I wonder how hon. members of this house who represent other fertile districts in this country have been viewing the lack of constructive suggestions from their own side. Think of those vast fertile tracts from the Niagara peninsula to Windsor, and then, north of that, of those vast areas in the St. Lawrence valley, the richest in the world, producing fruits and vegetables, and of those sections of British Columbia which are likely to be affected by this agreement. Do hon. gentlemen representing these districts want Canada to return to the conditions of 1929, to the conditions that prevailed from 1926 to 1930. as I recall them most vividly? Do my hon. friends who are interested in these rich tracts of country recall the flow of trucks back and forth across the border, bringing in the surplus crops of American fruits and vegetables to be disposed of in Ontario and other parts of this dominion? I wonder if they recall that the canning companies were compelled by the competition of American canners to resort to importing a portion of their requirements, and then their pack, much of it, probably went over to the homeland. I shall not

read into Hansard figures from the bureau of statistics showing how these importations were reduced in the years from 1930 to 1935 when we had a Conservative government in power in this country. We have all had an opportunity to digest those figures and discuss them on the public platform and in private, and it is hardly necessary for me to repeat them here. I wonder if hon. gentlemen recall, as I do, the truck loads of surplus American produce coming into our own home market, as I saw them come into the St. Catharines market, and selling at a price with which no producer in Ontario could begin to compete. I have experienced those things, and I know something about them. The late government took steps to protect this particular industry-your industry and mine. It constitutes one of the greatest basic industries of this country. I recall that when the canning factories were assisted by the late government in respect to importations, imports of canned goods, which had been coming into Canada in thousands of cases, were reduced by seventy-five per cent. The statistical reports will prove that. A feeling of security was built up among the fruit and vegetable interests from 1930 to 1935. I know of one very large producer who spent a small fortune-and this point applies to Peel and other counties that have been referred to on the floor of this house-in building greenhouses in which to produce commodities for the households of this country, such as lettuce, early cabbage, and similar products which tend to foster our home markets. I recall that he was frightened almost beyond description when he was told by owners of trucks that came down from Guelph and Galt and Hamilton: "We may as well go a littlefarther east where we will get our producefor half the price that we can buy it fromyou." He replied, "I cannot produce it for any less, with all the costs of production here." They started to carry out their

threat, and I well remember how the late government saw to it that that situation was relieved.

Nor have I forgotten all the invested capital and the immense amount of labour that is taken care of through that investment. I know of one place where over forty persons are working. It is one of the largest greenhouses in the country, growing plants for other growers and for the owner's use. I saw in 1931 cabbage being brought over wholesale from the United States, to the detriment of home production, but the late government saw fit to stop that kind of thing by applying the necessary restrictions. Are hon. mem-

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LIB

William John Ward

Liberal

Mr. WARD:

Will the hon. member permit a question? Would he support a measure that would bonus all agriculture?

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CON

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LOCKHART:

No, I would not. May I refer to a personal experience last year? Hearing that there was a considerable crop in New York state, I visited that state, and I found that tons and tons of fruit and vegetables were being offered along the highways. I inquired as to the prices; they were 25 to 50 cents per hamper for the best peaches, and all kinds of fruit and vegetables of the first quality were being offered at proportionately low prices. I asked as to the reason, and they said that the major portion of their stock of produce had been consumed and this was more or less their surplus. The storage companies had refused to accept any more deliveries; the canning factories had said that they wanted no more produce of any kind. The highways were banked with this surplus produce, right in the midst of the harvesting of our own luscious crop in Ontario and other parts of Canada. I spoke to grower after grower and asked why they did not engage trucks and take it across to this steady, stable Canadian market as they had done for the previous four or five years. They shook their heads and said: "There is no chance of any such opportunity now as we had a few years ago. The present government of Canada sees to it that the home producer is protected." I wonder how many hon. members of this house can recall such conditions as I have related. Are all my hon. friends sure, I say, that the provisions of the law are to be put into effect and that we shall again be faced with these unfortunate conditions?

Let us go forward to June, July and August of this year, when our harvesting is in progress. Hon. members have been very silent on this point. I am wondering what alibi they will have when they go back this year to their constituents for their silence in this house if we are to be given no more assurance and no more definite statements of full protection in this respect than have already been forthcoming.

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LIB

George Ernest Wood

Liberal

Mr. WOOD:

I should like to ask the hon. member a question. In spite of all he says

about the protection provided in Lincoln county-and I know something about it-is he prepared to say that the producer has enjoyed better prices in consequence of the policy of his party in the last five years? Has he disposed of his surplus? Was there no surplus at that time?

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CON

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LOCKHART:

The producers have had better prices in the last four or five years than they had prior to 1930. That is my answer to the question, and I can prove it. There are a great many implications in the terms of this agreement. What happens if our basic industries fail in any measure? The purchasing power of the producer is affected. The products of our secondary industries remain unsold. Unemployment follows. Then we have increased relief, and the urban centres come into the picture, where, we are told, fifty-two per cent of the population reside. Back come the authorities in the provinces and the mayors of the cities and towns to the doorstep of my hon. friend the Minister of Labour, wanting increased assistance to take care of the increasing population in the urban centres.

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

They did during the last government.

Topic:   CANADA-UNITED STATES TRADE AGREEMENT PROPOSED APPROVAL SUBJECT TO LEGISLATION MAKING PROVISIONS EFFECTIVE
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CON

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. LOCKHART:

Why should they not? Of course. A large percentage have gone into the urban centres. That is the result when we break down the possibility of increasing our basic production and maintaining fair prices. My stand is going to be to protect our home markets as the late government did.

Then let us go further and foster these favoured relations through our empire trade agreements. I seem to recall that those agreements were strenuously opposed by about ninety-nine per cent of the then opposition, who are now the government. I wonder if they will now say that they were justified in that opposition. We must all think seriously on these matters.

There is another reference I desire to make before concluding. We have spent days in this house discussing the over-production of wheat and the multiplicity of ways by which we hope to dispose of that oversupply. I should like to refer to another basic industry, which will also develop into a secondary industry and which will be wiped out by the terms of this agreement. I should like hon. members from around Montreal, Chatham, Stratford and vicinity to pay particular attention to what I have to say. A few years ago an industry was started at Chatham on a very small scale; I refer to the processing of the soya bean. That factory met with certain

Canada-U.S. Trade Agreement

financial difficulties brought about by reasons which I need not mention, but we will say it suffered from mismanagement. Recently new factories sprang up at Montreal and Stratford. The Montreal plant is capable of processing 200.000 bushels per year. So far I have not been able to get definite information as to what the Stratford plant can process, but I imagine it will be at least half that amount. In addition we have the parent plant at Chatham, which is being rehabilitated and which I believe will be able to process a reasonable amount of soya beans. This industry was fostered by the late government. Up to the present time, that is up until last year, only about 100,000 bushels of soya beans were produced in Canada. I am informed that the minimum average yield is about twenty bushels to the acre, and I am also informed on very good authority that the price is about SI.10 per bushel at Montreal.

The soya bean is very high in protein content, and from it is made a very valuable feed cake. An oil is also obtained which is being used extensively in the manufacture of soap and high grade paints. These are all commodities that are used to a great extent in this country. While on the train returning from Toronto Sunday evening I happened to encounter quite by chance a man who is very closely connected with the soya bean industry in the United States. He informed me that there are tens of thousands of acres of these beans being grown in the United States, and their high oil content is becoming recognized as one of great value. He informed me that the Ford Motor Company wras using the soya bean oil almost exclusively in the manufacture of its high grade paints and that the soya bean industry had become so important that only last week the Chicago exchange had been asked to include daily market quotations on the soya bean and its by-products. I believe the soya bean has developed into an important competitor in the salted peanut market. It is a peculiar thing, but when I returned to Ottawa I encountered a government official in the Department of Agriculture, who told me that only the week before he had been given the opportunity of tasting a sample of soya beans passed through a gun, just as puffed wheat is manufactured. He had tasted a sample of beans that had gone through this new process, which I understand has been developed by a man living in the province of Ontario, and he gave it as his honest conviction that the product was far superior to any salted peanut he had ever tasted.

I mention these facts in order to show the possibilities of the soya bean industry. Here is an opportunity to build up a new basic

12739-59J

industry which undoubtedly will develop into an important secondary industry as well, but what do we find under the trade agreement? Soya beans are placed on the free list and our market is opened to the competition of the tens of thousands of bushels produced annually in the United States. In all fairness, Mr. Speaker, I ask, is this encouraging a young Canadian industry, both basic and secondary. Is this going to help employment at Montreal or Stratford or Chatham? Is this going to bring about another invasion of the Canadian labour market? Is it going to help increase the tonnage of our railways? I wonder if the hon. members from those areas have overlooked the fact that soya beans are on the free list. I hope the government will see that these conditions are remedied, but from what took place prior to 1929 I again have little hope.

This agreement, as it has been executed, contains many implications, Mr. Speaker. I have given a good deal of thought to these questions as they concern furniture, cut flowers, fruit and vegetables, lumbering, beef, hogs, and so on, together with the quotas that have been established, and I cannot see anything equitable or nearly equitable in the agreement. I am opposed to sacrificing the recovery of Canada as during the last two or three years and which we enjoyed under the late government. I will stake my all on the preservation of our home markets, the protection of our basic and secondary industries and the further increase of our trade by continued empire trade agreements. Canada has unlimited natural resources, which must not be exploited by any nation that will not trade with us on an equitable basis.

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LIB

Joseph James Duffus

Liberal

Mr. J. J. DUFFUS (Peterborough West):

Mr. Speaker, it is not my intention, nor do I consider it at all necessary for me in this my maiden speech to take any appreciable amount of the valuable time of the House of Commons in further support of this trade agreement between Canada and the United States of America. I shall endeavour to refrain from giving long lists of figures, averages, percentages, quotas, per capitas, and the like. We have heard these reiterated in this chamber time and again until I question whether any hon. member can recall them, with the exception perhaps of the hon. members who so ably placed them on Hansard. I am convinced that every hon. member of this house has long since come to a decision as to how he or she will vote on this important trade agreement. I think it is well, however, that the house and the country should know how the agreement is being supported by comment

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CON

Herbert Earl Wilton

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. WILTON:

How does the hon. member suppose it will increase employment?

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LIB

Joseph James Duffus

Liberal

Mr. DUFFUS:

It will increase employment in many ways. In the first place, it will give us more adequate markets; there will be a greater expansion of trade and consequently employment will increase. Without increased markets, without an expansion of trade we will continue to have an unemployment situation as acute as it is at the present time and as it has been during the past five years. I believe that this government is a reasonable government. I am confident that should this treaty adversely affect any industry, we as their representatives stand ready to accompany the owners and their associates to the tariff board, to the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Euler), and to the Minister of Finance (Mr. Dunning) where they are sure to get a sympathetic hearing of their case and a satisfactory adjustment of their grievances if it is at all possible. I am sure that our manufacturers know and appreciate that every effort is being made to reduce the cost of the instruments and implements of production. This will assist very materially. It is obvious that lower production costs are essential, in fact they are imperative. Commodity prices must be reduced to the minimum in the interests of the consumer if he is to maintain a decent standard of living, which standard is not too high at the present time. These adjustments will bring about increased employment, a greater tonnage for our railways and transportation systems and an increase in our tourist trade. There will be greater profits in business and the people in all lines of endeavour will have an increased purchasing power. The lowering of commodity prices and the providing of adequate markets for

our surplus products, not by blasting methods but by the exercise of good will, has been the policy of this government and has always been the policy of the Liberal party.

The first and most important step towards the elimination of this widespread depression is to make the farmer prosperous. He is the greatest buyer in the country. At the present time everything he possesses-I can hardly say everything he owns-is in a dilapidated condition. Restore to him his former purchasing power and our unemployment problem will be solved. If our farmers are prosperous, our merchants will be happy, our manufacturers will be busy and our lumbermen, fishermen, and miners will be working. In conclusion may I say that if we can obtain the cooperation of both sides of the house and the coordination of the thoughts and efforts of all hon. members it will hasten the time when all the citizens of this fair land will be enjoying the same measure of prosperity and happiness as has always obtained under a Liberal administration.

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SC

Percy John Rowe

Social Credit

Mr. P. J. ROWE (Athabaska):

Mr. Speaker, I intend to vote for this resolution on the principle that half a loaf is better than no bread. I say advisedly, "on the principle" because I do not see even half a loaf; I do not see even a quarter of a loaf and it would take a microscope to discover even a crumb. However, consistency and logic demand that I vote for the crumb. Surely it must be clear to every impartial person that tinkering with tariffs will not solve our problems. If it would, the experimentation with tariffs during the last seventy years by both major parties of Canada would have accomplished something. I conceive it to be the inescapable moral and legal duty of this house to find a way to distribute the vast wealth of this country among the Canadian people. Everyone agrees that great wealth does exist in this dominion.

I was in the museum on Sunday looking at the tools and the culture of our Indians and Eskimos, and it struck me what an object lesson for the people of Canada this was, for these simple primitive people had at hand only their traditions, their folk lore and the simple culture of ages past, and yet what amazing skill and ingenuity they applied to the problem of living. We to-day have inherited the accumulated knowledge, culture and science of all past ages, and yet in the midst of an admittedly incalculable abundance of everything we have failed to find a way to distribute equitably, justly and fairly among the Canadian people the vast wealth that everyone agrees exists in this country. One might carry the metaphor even further and refer to the

Canada-U.S. Trade Agreement

Scriptures: "Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise." Surely we who have preached brotherhood for centuries and have even talked about a religion that is beyond the compass of the human understanding must admit that we have neither the morality nor the intelligence of insects because the ants and the bees have their cooperative commonwealths, their industrial democracies, in which each individual in return for the labour that he gives is guaranteed all the necessities of life. Under the present system, as has been amply demonstrated in the report of the price spreads commission, men, women and children are treated as a means to an end, and that end is the enrichment of those who by their privileges and by the power that is given them under the system are able to impose their uncompromising will upon the weak and the helpless.

Thinking along these lines, I wonder whether we could not take a more scientific and a more humanitarian attitude towards these problems. I think it is an unassailable truth that Canada has concentrated within her borders the greatest body of vital natural resources existing within the borders of any country in the world. Canada is more richly endowed with all that goes to make for a beautiful, happy and comfortable living for our people than is any other country in the world, and yet one and one-quarter millions of honest, decent Canadian citizens are to-day compelled to accept the bitter, heart-breaking degradation of public charity. Charity may be a lovely virtue if you are handing it out, but it is the bitterest of all pills to accept. In the words of the right hon. leader of the opposition (Mr. Bennett), "the dole is a condemnation, final and complete, of this system." I agree. I also agree with the poet Edward Markham, who, speaking of these matters, said:

Down all the stretch of hell to its last gulf there is no shape more terrible than this, more tongued with censure of a world's blind greed, more filled with signs and portents for the soul, more fraught with menace to the universe.

I feel that to-day every member of parliament is standing at the bar of judgment, and I am wondering what the verdict of history will be. God forbid that we should fail to do the reasonable, the logical, the humanitarian and the Christian thing.

There was something rather ominous in the words of the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Mackenzie) when, speaking before the Canadian Artillery Association at Ottawa on the 7th of February, he used these words:

I want to leave with you the profound thought that you will never have in the Dominion of Canada an adequate system of defence until you create a national sentiment in favour of such a system. In my mind there are two cardinal and guiding principles to be borne in mind when establishing a system of national defence. First we must have the defence forces sufficient to control subversive elements from within, and sufficient also to repel attacks from without.

I want to suggest to the minister and the cabinet that if they would give consideration to a sane rational system of equitably distributing the products of this power-industry age, there would be no need of worrying about subversive elements within the country. Are we to understand, for instance, that the citizens of Pembroke, Ontario, who apparently driven to desperation by the sound-money scarcity philosophy of their government rose in anger, are to be classed as subversive?

I am a citizen of Ontario; my people have lived here for generations, and I say that the gathering storms of anger at the futility and inability of governments-I do not care what name they go under-to solve this problem of poverty amidst abundance is simply taxing the patience of even the best Anglo-Saxon citizens of Canada. If I am told that I am severe in my language I say that the circumstances call for severe language. As William Lloyd Garrison says:

The apathy and indifference of the people with regard to this great question is enough to cause every statue to leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead.

I am not equivocating. I will not retreat one inch. I will be heard on behalf of the people of this country who are looking to this house and to this parliament for a solution of their problem. You might as well say to me, sir, that I am predicting a revolution when I talk about the people rising in anger as say to the astronomer who uses his instruments to calculate the movements of the solar bodies and predicts that there is going to be an eclipse of the moon at a certain time, that he is to be blamed when that eclipse happens. I say that unless we take hold of this problem immediately and solve it, we are going to have trouble.

I want to ask the government a question or two. The first is this-and I am asking it of course in relation to the system; I have nothing whatever against this or any other government-Why do we, at great cost, train our young men in universities, give them the degree of Bachelor of Commerce, and send them overseas to drum up markets for goods which are needed here at home? I say that nothing could be more stupid or more grotesque. If we can demonstrate to other

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LIB

William Henry Moore

Liberal

Mr. MOORE:

Is the hon. gentleman

referring to the report or survey of the Brookings Institution?

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SC

Percy John Rowe

Social Credit

Mr. ROWE (Athabaska):

I am referring

to the report of the National Survey of Potential Productive Capacity, which has just released its findings. It is published by Charles Loeb, director of the survey.

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March 10, 1936