March 3, 1941

CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

Why is this man to be punished because the organization to which he lent money has been banned by the Minister of Justice? Surely that is most unfair. That money goes to the custodian of enemy property. But the man who lent the money is not an enemy; he is a Canadian citizen, born in Canada. He must, however, wait until the end of the war to get the money which he lent in good faith to an organization which had given him a written guarantee that it would pay him back at the rate of so much a month.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

He will know something about the law of delays before be gets his money.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Lester Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weybum):

And he may know some privation before he gets it, too.

I submit that in studying these regulations the committee ought to give serious consideration to matters of this kind. Ever since the war began, we in this group have insisted not that the laws of this country be made easier for saboteurs and fifth columnists, but that they should 'be made harder for such people. No country can be too hard on any man or woman who, having accepted the pro-

Defence of Canada-Special Committee

tection and benefits of that country, seeks to undermine it. At the same time, however, we demand that steps to be taken under these regulations shall be defined so clearly that they cannot be abused, so that next week a man like Florian Stephan cannot be arrested because he said something an aider-man did not like, so that pamphlets cannot be seized because someone does not like what is inside them, whether it is subversive or not.

We in this group contend that freedom is precious, and we know that down through the years men have given their lives to pass it on to us. We know that even to-day in various parts of the world men are shedding their blood to keep freedom alive. We in this parliament cannot treat lightly our responsibility to see to it in this country of ours that freedom shall not perish from the earth.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. J. G. TURGEON (Cariboo):

Mr. Speaker, I am sure every hon. member rising to speak respecting the defence of Canada regulations must do so only after hesitation. Upon rising to address you to-night, I am worried lest any words of mine might unintentionally add fuel to the fires of discontent which since the commencement of the war have been in process of creation in Canada.

I intend to deal frankly with statements made respecting the defence of Canada regulations and the manner in which they have been administered by the Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe). First of all, like every other hon. member I listened to-day to the speech of the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar (Mr. Coldwell), and noted the strong emotions he displayed because a newspaper in this city had questioned his motives. Every hon. member sympathized with him, as we would sympathize with any hon. member whose motives are questioned. But almost every man, whether from his seat across the floor at that angle, or speaking outside, in connection with the defence of Canada regulations, questions the motives of the right hon. Minister of Justice. By word of mouth the public are being told that the Minister of Justice is an honest man, a man in whom everyone has confidence. Yet from the Atlantic ocean to the Pacific, charges have been made time after time that not only are these defence of Canada regulations abominable in themselves, but they have been administered by the right hon. Minister of Justice in such a manner as to inflict hardship upon men who cannot defend themselves.

I intend to return to this matter later on, but as one who was a member of the defence of Canada regulations committee which sat last session may I pay tribute to every individual who was on that committee? I listened to the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar when he spoke the other day, as I did to the hon. member for Weyburn (Mr. Douglas) when he spoke this evening. I should like to deal first with what the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar has said. Let me repeat that the members of this committee worked as no other committee of which I have been a member ever worked. The members tried honestly in every possible way to reach conclusions. I firmly believe they were trying to reach conclusions which would prove to be of benefit to the people of this country. May I point out that every suggestion for a lessening of the severity of the regulations did not come from members of the new political groups. On nearly every occasion a member from some party wanted to lessen the severity of these regulations.

Speaking a few days ago, the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar directed nearly all his remarks to one fact. He found fault with the Minister of Justice because out of twenty-four cases where the review committee had recommended release, in nine cases the recommendation had not been accepted by the minister. The hon. member felt that this action was an imposition upon the people of Canada. The defence of Canada regulations committee dealt for many hours with section 22 which provides for the setting up of these review committees. This section also provides the means by which a person detained under section 21 or by order of the Minister of Justice may make his objections heard and secure his release if release is coming to him. The committee recommended certain changes, and these were all carried out and made the law of the land by an order in council passed under authority of the War Measures Act.

In all its discussions, no member of the committee suggested that responsibility should be lifted from the Minister of Justice and placed upon the review committee. This matter was not even debated, and yet the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar bases almost the whole charge that he made against the administration of the defence of Canada regulations upon the fact that some of the recommendations of the review court were not put into effect by the Minister of Justice. As a matter of fact, one of the features of the defence of Canada regulations most severely

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condemned by some of the members of the parliamentary committee was this setting up of a review committee of one man. We were told with some degree of justice that no one-man committee, even though the member held a high judicial position in the past, or was a justice at the moment, could properly investigate and render judgment in connection with men who were interned under these regulations. Yet we are told to-day that the Minister of Justice, a member of the government of Canada, should divest himself of responsibility and give it to this one-man committee, which was perhaps the most severely condemned of all the defence of Canada regulations.

I noticed the other day when the Minister of Justice followed the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar, he complimented that hon. member upon the fact that at no time had he put forth the thought: Why should we fight for democracy abroad when we are losing democracy at home? The hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar made no such reference. I have here, however, a Vancouver paper dated January 6 in which is to be found an article by a member of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation, a member of the legislature of British Columbia. I may say this is not the same member referred to the other day by the hon. member for Comox-Alberni (Mr. Neill). Perhaps I may be permitted to digress for a moment and say that this legislator would not make the type of speech exposed in this house the other day by the hon. member for Comox-Alberni.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

Olof Hanson

Liberal

Mr. HANSON (Skeena):

Who is he?

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

Mrs. Jamieson. In

commenting upon the defence of Canada regulations, she completed her argument with these words:

Why does the Canadian government not follow suit? Because it fears that by its own policies it has lost the loyalty of these men; and so they are lost to Canadian industry and the Canadian war effort. And as the public sees more arbitrary internments, more convictions on flimsy charges, and intimidations of labour unions, men ask themselves: "What is the use of fighting for democracy abroad, when we are losing it every day at home?" This attitude, induced by Canadian war regulations, loses the war abroad, and is dangerous both to democracies and to Canada.

She was referring to what had taken place in Great Britain, and I shall have a word or two to say about that in answering the hon. member for Weyburn. The hon. member made reference to the communist party and he got into somewhat of an altercation with the hon. member for Cochrane (Mr. Bradette). The other day the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar made a similar reference

to the communist party, but he said that he held the communist party in contempt. Mind you, Mr. Speaker, I believe him when he says that he holds them in contempt, 'but I am dealing with an argument and as it was applied to public opinion in this country. He gave as his reason for holding them in contempt the fact that in spite of the attitude which the communist party had taken with regard to the war against Germany prior to the actual outbreak of the war, after Great Britain was at war, instead of participating in the effort of the people of the British isles and the British commonwealth, the communist party stated that this was a war of imperialism abroad brought about by capitalism.

Unfortunately, we have heard those very words in Canada. Unfortunately, we have heard them in British Columbia, and in spite of the fact that my hon. friends across the aisle say that no political party is a greater target for the communists than they, it was prominent members of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation party who made statements with regard to this being an imperialistic war and one brought about naturally by acts of capitalism for many years before the war started. I mention that not for purposes of recrimination, but because I notice that every time some people in Canada make an attack on the defence of Canada regulations, they immediately start to dissociate themselves from the communists and to say that the whole object which the Minister of Justice and those associated with him have in the administration of these regulations is the coercion of labour, and they immediately say, as the hon. member for Weyburn said to-night, that they are a target for the communist party.

May I digress to suggest first of all that if my hon. friends over there are at outs with the communist party, if the communist party is taking pot-shots at them, it is, I feel certain, only the natural instinctive reaction of one group that is angry at another group whose objectives are the same as its own but who are taking a different path to reach those objectives; and that animosity exhibited by the communist party towards my hon. friends over there is in complete alignment with the animosity expressed by my hon. friends themselves towards the Unity reform party composed of the hon. member for North Battle-ford (Mrs. Nielsen). The hon. member for Weyburn to-night and the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar the other day stated that the Canadian Tribune, on whose behalf both these hon. members raised a word of protest in this house, had attacked the Cooperative

Defence of Canada-Special Committee

Commonwealth Federation party and that, in

spite of that, they were defending the Canadian Tribune.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

Not defending

the Canadian Tribune, but objecting to its being suppressed without a hearing.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

If my memory serves me aright, the hon. member for Weyburn said to-night that the Canadian Tribune had made a scurrilous attack upon his particular group. So far as I know-of course there may be some editorials I have not seen-that scurrilous attack of the Canadian Tribune upon the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation party was because of the alleged neglect with which the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation party were treating the hon. member for North Battleford. That editorial said, for instance, that some professor or other whose name I forget, had expressed sympathy with the Canadian Tribune but could not understand its attitude towards the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation, and the editorial in question went on to refer to the meeting held by the hon. member for North Battle-ford in the city of Vancouver and asked why it was that the Federationist, the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation organ in Vancouver, had paid so little attention to the meeting of the hon. member for North Battleford.

I have here, Mr. Speaker, a sort of Christmas and New Year's message given to the people of Canada last December by Mr. Lewis, secretary of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation National Council. I took it from the Federationist of Vancouver, which carries the message under a heading reading as follows:

"United Farmers, Workers, Would Preserve Democracy"-"Reports C.C.F. Organized Labour Unity in Montreal City Council Campaign" by David Lewis, Secretary, C.C.F. National Council.

Then follows the message:

Canadian Reaction Exploits War

The past fifteen months have shown that in our country the war is being exploited by reaction for its own needs. Our democracy is threatened by the defence regulations; a determined anti-labour drive is under way; monopolistic interests are being handed even more complete control of our economic life.

I have here-and I know I am not the only member who has seen it-the report of the proceedings of the fifty-sixth annual convention of the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada. It is quite probable that my very good friend the hon. member for Vancouver East (Mr. Maclnnis) was present at this convention. I wish to take a minute or two for the purpose of commending to the people

of Canada the stand taken by the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada with regard to the defence of Canada regulations and the manner in which they are being administered by the right hon. Minister of Justice. At page 47 of the report of the proceedings at their annual convention in 1940, I find under the heading "Defence of Canada Regulations," an expression of complete approval of the defence of Canada regulations and of the manner in which they are being administered. I cite this paragraph from among others:

The officers of the congress have sought assurances that no action taken has been because of membership in a trade union or the carrying out of legitimate trade union duties. So far we have failed to find any evidence of this having been done and it would be contrary to labour's principles to claim that any person should receive preferential treatment in the application either of the defence of Canada regulations or of any law of Canada merely because he is a member of a trade union or any other group or class of society.

Another part of the report says:

In all countries at war it has been found necessary to sacrifice personal liberty to some degree as the price to be paid for national security. The defence of Canada regulations, which follow closely those put into effect in Great Britain at the outbreak of war-

These are not my words but those of a formal resolution of the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada.

give wide powers to proceed against persons or associations without resort to ordinary peace-time procedures of the laying of charges and formal public trial. The denial of these long cherished liberties is held to be essential to enable government authorities to act with promptitude and secrecy.

All through their discussions will be found arguments made before the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada similar to those which have been made in this house and made by some members of this house outside it; and in the report of their proceedings I find every such argument answered, argument for argument, by the leaders of the Trades and Labour Congress. The report also carries the formal resolution of approval by the congress of the defence of Canada regulations and expressing confidence in the administrator of those regulations, the right hon. Minister of Justice-all of it indelibly impressed by means of a formal resolution of approval by the congress.

Yet ever since then, public men-and naturally I am not saying anything against men in public life-state day after day that the whole purpose of the regulations and their administration is the coercion, economic, social and political, of labour and other classes

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Dejence oj Canada-Special Committee

in Canada. The hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar, the other day, addressing the Minister of Justice, said: "If you are looking for subversive elements, don't keep always in the gutter". Let me ask hon. members who are denouncing the regulations and their administration: Do those things that have been done, things which are known to us here tonight, indicate that the Minister of Justice and those working with him are looking in the gutter? Was it in the gutter that they found Mr. Camillien Houde. a member of the legislature of Quebec, a former leader of a political party in that province and, at the moment of his detention, mayor of the largest city in Canada? Was it in the gutter that they found the great Italian patriot Mr. Franceschini when he was put in the internment camp? Petitions have been signed, I understand, asking for the release of this gentleman. My hon. friends should talk

about looking in the gutter or above it to those who are making these demands upon the Minister of Justice asking him to release some people who are detained purely because those who are responsible for administering the regulations, those who are responsible for the safety of Canada, feel that it is in the interests of the country that these men should remain in detention.

I am going to deal now not with the regulations themselves but with the nature of the attacks made upon the regulations. I have here the speech mentioned to-night by the hon. member for Weybum. He said that nobody in this house had ever taken exception to any of the speeches made by the member for North Battleford. I have here a speech on the budget delivered at the last session on July 2. It will be found at page 1263 of Hansard. The hon. member for North Battle-ford spoke on that occasion and I wish to give one or two quotations.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

Did the hon. member attack them at the time as subversive?

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

I never did. My hon. friend says that this particular group has never opposed the defence of Canada regulations.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

I did not say anything of the kind. I said that we have never opposed the idea of having regulations.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

I say that the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation did oppose the idea of having defence of Canada regulations, that they opposed the idea of the proclamation of the WTar Measures Act; and the Cooperative Commonwealth party in British Columbia-

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

Two different things.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

The defence of Canada regulations find their very root in the War Measures Act. My hon. friend knows that; and yet that group, he says, have never opposed the regulations in principle. I say that they have opposed the regulations in principle and opposed the statute upon which they are based.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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CCF

Thomas Clement (Tommy) Douglas

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn):

I must correct the hon. gentleman. At no time have I said that we never opposed the defence of Canada regulations. My party never at any time opposed the idea of having regulations for the defence of Canada, but we contended that they should be passed by this parliament and not by order in council under the War Measures Act.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

I do not like to do this, but I have here a copy of the Federalionist, which my bon. friend will admit is the organ of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation in British Columbia. It is for March, 1940, and it is headed, "Cariboo Edition". On the front page there is an article by William Irvine who is a member of the national council of the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation. Under his own by-line on the front page of the Cariboo edition of the Federalionist he says: "A vote for Mr. Turgeon is a vote for the padlock law"- I do not know where he got that-"and for the War Measures Act". What has my friend to say about that?

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Lester Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weybum):

Opposition to using the War Measures Act whereby orders in council can be brought down putting into effect regulations that parliament has never seen is totally different from being opposed to any type of regulation to defend the realm.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

Angus Lewis Macdonald (Minister of National Defence for Naval Services)

Liberal

Mr. MACDONALD (Kingston City):

The defence of Canada regulations were passed when he made that statement.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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?

James McCrie Douglas

Mr. DOLTGLAS (Weybum):

Yes, and they were passed by order in council under the War Measures Act and this parliament never saw them except indirectly.

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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LIB

James Gray Turgeon

Liberal

Mr. TURGEON:

The hon. member and other members of his group, time after time, rise in their places and state that the whole objective of the regulations is labour. They sometimes apply it to the British Labour party, and then they talk of labour in general. I have just read to the house a formal resolution passed last September by the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada with regard to the defence of Canada regulations, and

Defence of Canada-Special Committee

they had not been discussed in this house, though they had been thoroughly discussed in that committee. May I speak a word of approval of the Minister of Justice. I say that every single recommendation of that committee relating to the defence of Canada regulations was accepted and carried out by the government of which the right hon. gentleman is Minister of Justice. Without exception, every recommendation that committee made was carried out. The hon. member for North Battleford, speaking on the budget, after calling attention to excess profits tax and that sort of thing, and people who have money, said:

But of course that capital is something in the nature of a golden calf set up in our country, something we are forbidden to touch. That is a precedent which has been created, one which even in this time of crisis the government is going to continue to protect. Our men must suffer; they must give their lives. Our people must toil unremittingly. They will be forced to accept wages set for them. They will be forced to accept conditions, under the defence of Canada regulations. Yet at the same time the conditions I have described will go on.

Is that a proper criticism to make and to scatter broadcast throughout the country against the defence of Canada regulations?

Mr. DOUGLAS (Weyburn); Is it subversive ?

Topic:   DEFENCE OF CANADA
Subtopic:   APPOINTMENT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO CONSIDER AND REVIEW. REGULATIONS AND NATURALIZATION AND DEPORTATION LAWS
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March 3, 1941