June 16, 1942

LIB

George Alexander Cruickshank

Liberal

Mr. CRUICKSHANK:

When will that discussion take place?

Topic:   DAIRY INDUSTRY
Subtopic:   CONDITIONS AFFECTING MILK PRODUCTION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA AND ONTARIO
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LIB

Georges Parent (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

This is an illustration of the sort of question that is being asked on the orders of the day and which I have been ruling cannot properly be put at this time. Such a question necessitates consultation between the minister and officials and the minister is not in a position to reply at once. Such questions should be placed on the order paper.

Topic:   DAIRY INDUSTRY
Subtopic:   CONDITIONS AFFECTING MILK PRODUCTION IN BRITISH COLUMBIA AND ONTARIO
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GASOLINE

PRESS REPORTS AS TO PROBABLE REDUCTION IN VALUE OF RATION COUPONS


On the orders of the day:


CON

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Conservative (1867-1942)

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

Would the Minister of Munitions and Supply care to make a supplementary statement implementing what has been said by the press of the country in connection with gasoline rationing? People are sending letters and telegrams, wondering what the new ruling is to be. The papers seem to have [information.

Topic:   GASOLINE
Subtopic:   PRESS REPORTS AS TO PROBABLE REDUCTION IN VALUE OF RATION COUPONS
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Transport; Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Hon. C. D. HOWE (Minister of Munitions and Supply):

To the best of my knowledge there is no foundation for the statements that have appeared in the press within the last forty-eight hours with regard to the gasoline situation. However, I have promised a statement, and I hope to be able to make it tomorrow, setting out the situation in full.

Topic:   GASOLINE
Subtopic:   PRESS REPORTS AS TO PROBABLE REDUCTION IN VALUE OF RATION COUPONS
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LABOUR CONDITIONS

CASES DEALT WITH BY NATIONAL AND REGIONAL WAR LABOUR BOARDS


On the orders of the day:


LIB

Humphrey Mitchell (Minister of Labour)

Liberal

Hon. HUMPHREY MITCHELL (Minister of Labour):

In view of the interest that is being taken in the functions of the national war labour board and the regional boards, and the many inquiries received by the department, I thought it might be well if the number of cases dealt with were placed on record. The report of cases dealt with by regional war labour boards from December 1, 1941 to May 15, 1942, is as follows:Cases Cases Casesopened closed pendingP.E.I 28 28 noneN.S . 140 130 10N.B . 112 81 31Que . 942 739 203Ont . 1,392 1,380 12Man . 383 369 14Sask . 342 327 15Alta . 363 203 160B.C . 507 467 404,209 3,724 485In the case of the national war labourboard, the figu res are as follows Cases Cases Casesopened closed pending173 112 61

Topic:   LABOUR CONDITIONS
Subtopic:   CASES DEALT WITH BY NATIONAL AND REGIONAL WAR LABOUR BOARDS
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MOBILIZATION ACT

AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS


The house resumed from Monday, June 15, consideration of the motion of Mr. Mackenzie King for the second reading of Bill No. 80, to amend the National Resources Mobilization Act, 1940.


LIB

Georges Parent (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

Yesterday the hon. member for Vancouver East (Mr. Maclnnis) moved an amendment-

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Hon. R. B. HANSON (Leader of the Opposition):

May I interrupt you, Mr. Speaker? I was wondering if this ruling could be postponed for one day. I was not in the house when the amendment was moved, and I have not had an opportunity to study it. I should be obliged if we could have a delay

Mobilization Act-Mr. Howe

of twenty-four hours before your ruling is given. If it is asking too much I withdraw the request, but it would be a matter of some consideration to me if that course could be adopted.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
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LIB

Georges Parent (Speaker of the Senate)

Liberal

Mr. SPEAKER:

The request seems to be reasonable and I accede to it. I will give the ruling on the amendment to-morrow.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
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LIB

Clarence Decatur Howe (Minister of Transport; Minister of Munitions and Supply)

Liberal

Hon. C. D. HOWE (Minister of Munitions and Supply):

Since the beginning of the war it has not been my practice to take part in the debates of the house, apart from giving certain information about my department which seemed to be required in order to allow of decisions being reached. I have been entrusted with the task of mobilizing the activities of industry for war production, and I have concentrated all my time and thought on that particular problem.

I think that to-day we can claim that some progress has been made. I should like while I am on my feet to correct a statement that has been made frequently in the house, which I think conveys a seriously wrong impression. It has been stated that it is my job to accept such orders as are sent to me and have the munitions or supplies so ordered produced in Canada. That of course is wholly incorrect. My department is not a user, and we must find a user for the munitions that Canada does produce. However, we have studied the productive capacity of Canada; we have determined the things which could be made and which we think would be useful in the prosecution of the war, and we have set about finding the user who requires those things. By any other policy our munitions programme would not be nearly as far advanced as it is. I wish to make it clear that that has been our policy, and that if we have failed to bring industry into production in any particular, the fault lies largely with our department.

The reason I speak in this debate is that the discussion of the National Resources Mobilization Act is a discussion of Canada's man-power problem, and the man-power problem is vital to the work of my department, and to the carrying out of the commitments my department has made to the allied forces.

The real problem, as I see it, is how can we best use our total man-power towards the winning of the war, in the light of our responsibility to the united nations. This is not Canada's private war; Canada is one of a number of nations that are standing together to fight a war against a common enemy. We must of course have a balanced war programme, but we must give special emphasis to such matters as those in respect of which our geography and resources impose special

obligations. For example the geography and climate of Canada are particularly suited to the training of airmen, and we have devoted our efforts very largely in that direction. Some

10,000 aeroplanes are now being used in that programme, and a steady stream of pilots and airmen is being sent from this country to the United Kingdom. There is no country among the allied nations to-day that is making an effort in the training of airmen such as that being made in Canada. That I regard as a special obligation of Canada on account of our exceptionally favourable geography and climate.

We have in Canada large water powers, and we have therefore become a principal source of aluminum for the allies. To-day we produce more than 40 per cent of all the aluminum being used by the allied nations. That is a task that I think is particularly imposed upon Canada because no other country among the allied nations is so well able to carry it out. -

We have a tremendous responsibility in the production of nickel. Before the war about 95 per cent of the world's nickel came from Canada, and nickel to-day is a strategic metal in very short supply, one of the serious shortages of the war. Therefore there is an obligation imposed on Canada for an all-out production of nickel. The same thing applies to a lesser extent to the production of copper, zinc, lead and certain rare metals, carbon and certain alloys, and various other products that require large sources of hydro-electric energy for their successful production. Those are tasks I think that are particularly ours.

To a similar extent we have a task in the production of food. We have large agricultural areas and a climate suitable for the production of the types of food that are particularly required in the war effort.

We have a heavy responsibility, and one that we are having some difficulty in discharging, in the production of aeroplane spruce. Without the aeroplane spruce of Canada the production of aeroplanes to-day would be very difficult. Also coupled with that is the production of timber, a large part of which goes to the war areas.

I mention these particular responsibilities because it seems to me that our whole war effort is being distorted at the present time by the undue emphasis now being placed on men for the army overseas. We have an obligation to maintain an army overseas, an army commensurate with the importance of Canada as one of the allied nations. We are carrying out that responsibility, and have carried it out since the beginning of the war. The strategy of war has required that the Canadian army should stand as the spearhead of the defence of Britain. We all know that

Mobilization Act-Mr. Howe

no more important military task than the defence of Britain could be allocated to any army. Theirs has not been the glory of battles that have taken place, but they have played their part; they have maintained an efficient army, trained to the minute, equipped to the last degree and able to give a good account of themselves.

But even in the matter of the army we have another obligation, and that is to provide a defence for Canada. This is not a war concentrated on any one battle front; it is a war of constantly shifting battle lines. Few of us can be so blind as not to see that those battle fronts are moving in the direction of our own territory. We are more than ever before in this war obligated to maintain a first-class army in Canada. That is being done. Our defences are being strengthened on both coasts; our armies are being trained to meet any situation that may arise, and that task is well under way.

To centre all our war effort on the single problem of conscription of men for Canada's army overseas is to me an attitude arising out of the last war. At that time there was a single battle front, with great armies entrenched on both sides of that battle line. It seems to me that those who now overemphasize the need for conscription of men for overseas service are taking the "Colonel Blimp" attitude, of which we have heard a great deal recently in several countries. Their minds are going back to the last war; they refuse to see Canada's obligation in relation to the obligations of our allies; they take no cognizance of the battle going on on a dozen or fifteen battle fronts; they simply believe that what was true at this stage of the last war must be true in this war, and they magnify the need for conscription for our army overseas out of all relation to the real situation.

So far we have raised our armed services by the voluntary method. It is the method adopted at the beginning of the war. It is the traditional method for Canada. It is the method that has been used in Australia and south Africa. It is the method that we understand, and a method suited I think to the character of the people of Canada. I doubt whether any country has raised a finer army, or raised an army more quickly, than has Canada under the voluntary system. The suggestion is that we should now immediately change that system to a compulsory system. Surely the only reason for changing the established system would be that the voluntary system had failed. But I see no evidence at the moment that the voluntary system has failed.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

You have the compulsory system now, when this bill passes.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
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?

An hon. MEMBER:

You have changed

the system already for Canada.

Topic:   MOBILIZATION ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT TO REPEAL SECTION 3 PROVIDING LIMITATION IN RESPECT OF SERVICE OVERSEAS
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June 16, 1942