October 2, 1945

PC

Julian Harcourt Ferguson

Progressive Conservative

Mr. FERGUSON:

It may be a case of life and death.

Topic:   MEAT RATIONING
Subtopic:   GRAVENIIURST SANATORIUM
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WAR AND DEMOBILIZATION


PROVISION FOR APPROPRIATION OF §1,365,000,000 FOR WAR PURPOSES, DEMOBILIZATION, PROMOTION OF TRADE AND INDUSTRY, ETC. The house resumed from Friday, September 28, consideration of the motion of Mr. Ilsley that the house go into committee to consider a resolution to grant to His Majesty certain sums of money for the carrying out of measures deemed necessary or advisable in consequence of the war.


SC

Ernest George Hansell

Social Credit

Mr. E. G. HANSELL (Macleod):

Mr. Speaker, I had not intended to speak on this resolution, although. I did have it in mind that I might ask a few questions when the house had resolved itself into committee of the whole. However, the statement made by the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) before leaving for other parts of the world, and the statement of the Minister of Finance (Mr. Ilsley) which followed in respect to this resolution, along with the subsequent debate, has led me to desire to say just a word.

I think we should recognize that this resolution is important. It asks for permission to call upon the Canadian people for the tidy sum of 81,365,000.000. There was a day when a few million dollars used to stagger us, but now we have reached the stage of astronomical figures; we talk in terms of billions, and it does not seem to bother us. The wide variety of subjects which this resolution covers means that this money can be raised and spent for almost anything the government may desire to spend it on. It may involve even diplomatic relations; it may involve matters of international trade and commerce, the setting up of diplomatic staffs in other parts of the world, and so forth.

I recognize that Canada does not live in a world by itself. Throughout the past few years Canada has gradually come to be

recognized as one of the leading nations of the world, at least one of the leading small nations. I am not going to say that some credit is not due to the present Prime Minister in that respect, but I am afraid that when it comes to Canada's position in the world, particularly in the future world, sometimes the subject is talked of with some gloss and rather glibly, and terms are used that have not a great deal of reality. For instance, we hear from many sources, not the least being the lips of the Prime Minister, from time to time that we must cooperate in order to bring about a world community of nations. The words "cooperate", "cooperation" and "good will" are very agreeable terms to use. Perhaps I shall deal with them a little later.

There is another word that is used quite often in a glib fashion, and that is "aggression". When most people talk of aggression they always fancy that it is some other nation that is responsible for the aggression, just as though Germany and Italy and Japan, who just happened to be our enemies in war, are the only aggressors in the world. We must be realistic in the use of these terms.

Another word used quite often is "nationalism". Every man believes in his own country, but when he attempts to put his own country in order, or declares publicly that he believes his first duty is to his own country, he is immediately branded as an isolationist or an ultra-nationalist. Then the old propaganda machine gets going and the mighty and powerful propagandists lash out with their lying tongues against him. Social Creditors have been roasted for their stand, but what they really stand for is readiness to cooperate with the world, but at the same time giving to Canada what rightfully belongs to her.

The Prime Minister was in Edmonton not so many months ago. It happened to be during a political campaign, and I know that what is said during a political campaign always must be taken with a grain of salt. But it was the Prime Minister of Canada who was speaking. As he was in Edmonton, the capital city of Alberta, he could not leave alone the Social Crediters who have occupied seats in this house for almost the last ten years. His speech was recorded by the Canadian Press. By the way, before he attacked Alberta he took a nice little tap at a gentleman by the name of John Bracken. He said:

I have not been devoting my time as organizer of a political party.

Of course we know what he meant. What had he been doing?

I wiped out politics when this war began.

That is quite a statement.

War and Demobilization

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

A rich one.

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Ernest George Hansell

Social Credit

Mr. HANSELL:

Yes; nothing was further from the truth than that statement is.

Let me deal for a moment with this charge that we are ultra-nationalists, that the Social Credit party seem "determined to uphold what they describe as national sovereignty in its most extreme form."

Let me ask, Mr. Speaker, what sovereignty is? Sovereignty simply means the freedom of the individual. It means the freedom of the individual to act as an individual soul in his own right and in his own sphere, free from any big bosses at the top. Sovereignty means that a municipality should be able to act freely within its own sphere and that a province should be able to act according to its own will within its own sphere. Sovereignty means that Canada as a nation should be absolutely free to act as its will chooses within its own sphere. That is what we as Social Crediters have been saying. That is what we believe national sovereignty to mean, and I ask, would any man stand up in this house and say that there is anything wrong with that? You may call me an isolationist, a nationalist, if you like; but personally I am proud to be a Canadian. Personally I think that the duty of members of parliament is to tell the people of this country that our first duty is towards them as Canadians-and if that is being a nationalist, then call us nationalists and we shall be proud of it.

The Prime Minister said that we consistently ignored the vital necessity of external trade to the prosperity and welfare of Canada, and particularly of Alberta. The truth is, Mr. Speaker, that over the years we have disagreed with the Prime Minister's particular policy of seeking world markets as the only solution of

our internal problems. That is where we have differed with the Prime Minister. I do not like to bring in the hungry thirties, because the term and the references have been worn almost threadbare. But where was the Prime Minister and his government in those days when Canada was richly favoured with a vast abundance of good things, when we had almost everything our hearts could desire, when goods were piled upon our shelves and in our warehouses and in our stores, and yet the people were virtually beggars? What was the aim of the Prime Minister's foreign policy then? He looked around for foreign, markets. He said to the world, in effect: Come along, you nations, we have many good things to sell to you here; will you buy?

We might have crept up behind the Prime Minister and pulled his coat-tails and said to him: Mr. Prime Minister, look around. If he had looked around he would have seen thousands of people in Canada on relief and in a state of malnutrition or starvation. What we were trying to do was to pull the Prime Minister's coat-tails a little harder so that he would see these people and so that we could say to him: What are you going to do about these people? Our policy was that you do not have to be entirely dependent upon foreign markets to be able to distribute the goods we have in Canada to our own needy people. The difference between the two parties was this: The Prime Minister wanted to sell Canada to the rest of the world, while the Social Crediters wanted to give Canada to the Canadian people. If that is what the Prime Minister means by saying that we are distin-terested in foreign trade, then I will accept the charge; I do not mind it a bit. But I say to hon. members that what we were trying to tell the Prime Minister was this: We can offer our surpluses to the world, certainly we can, and yet at the same time by proper management of our monetary system we can also give to the Canadian people one of the highest standards of living in the world.

The world trade policy of the Prime Minister was simply this, to use a homely illustration. It does not matter how many eggs we have to fry; we must first feed the whole world with eggs before we can be permitted to fry our own. That was just about the Prime Minister's position with respect to foreign trade.

Of course, on that occasion the Prime Minister also had to tell the people of Alberta why we were not included on the San Francisco delegation. I do not say that he stated it as baldly as that. ,This is what he said, and I am quoting from the same dispatch:

War and Demobilization

Mr. King said it was true Social Credit members voted for participation in the San Francisco conference, but their position was hedged about with qualifications. He quoted John Blackmore, Social Credit house leader, as saying the only voices raised against the proposals for the San Francisco conference had been those of Social Credit members.

What does the Prime Minister expect from members of parliament? Does he expect us to sit here in our chairs, which apparently we are not to be allowed to take home with us, and to acquiesce in all that he says?

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Ernest George Hansell

Social Credit

Mr. HANSELL:

Yes; does he expect that? If he does, here is one group that he is going to be sadly disappointed in. Did not the Prime Minister say that he wanted the views of the various parties in the house? Well, we gave him our views, and here is something for other groups to think about. I want you to notice the way his statement reads:

He quoted John Blackmore, Social Credit house leader, as saying the only voices raised against the proposals for the San Francisco conference had been of Social Credit members.

Therefore, says he in effect, I will take on my delegation only those who will not oppose me; the only ones that I want with me are those who will say "yes." That evidently is the truth of the situation, based upon the Prime Minister's own statement. I think other groups in the house should resent that statement. If they do not, they lay themselves open to the charge of being yes-men to the Prime Minister of Canada, who perhaps in the end became yes-man to the world's big power shots.

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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

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

Mr. KNOWLES:

The hon. member will

recall that the leader of the C.C.F. group voted against the government on the question of the admission of Argentina.

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CCF

Angus MacInnis

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

Mr. MacINNIS:

He voted against it, anyway, to the extent that he was able.

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PC
CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

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

Mr. KNOWLES:

All I am asking the hon. member to do is to recognize that the leader of this group was not a yes-man.

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Ernest George Hansell

Social Credit

Mr. HANSELL:

He was not on the question of Argentina. But I was going to say that I regard that as a very minor point in-

deed, because there were other nations which were seeking admission to the San Francisco conference. Let me ask this: Did the same man who objected to one nation raise his voice when the recognized government of Poland were not admitted to the conference?

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October 2, 1945