March 25, 1946

HOUSING-RECOMMENDATION OF APPLICATIONS BY VETERANS AFFAIRS OFFICIALS


On the orders of the day: Mr. NORMAN J. M. LOCKHART (Lincoln): Arising out of the statement of the Minister of Reconstruction, and based on release No. 27, and several letters which I have received, may I ask the Minister of Reconstruction, and perhaps the Minister of Veterans Affairs, if the situation can be clarified as to the coordination between his department and that of veterans affairs. I have already received three or four letters, Mr. Speaker, pointing out that the veterans are very anxious to start the erection of houses, but they are alarmed at the instructions which require that they will first have to be recommended by other officials. Can the minister amplify these instructions so that the veteran may know whether they can proceed or how quickly they can proceed? They are in desperate need of houses. Hon. IAN A. MACKENZIE (Minister of Veterans Affairs): Is my hon. friend referring to housing under the small holdings portion of the Veterans Land Act?


PC

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Progressive Conservative

Mr. LOCKHART:

Release No. 27, just sent out from the Minister of Reconstruction, reads-I quote the last paragraph:

The veteran is required to certify that he will occupy the house in question, and applications will be accepted by the priorities officer only after they have been recommended by an official of the Department of Veterans Affairs.

They are all at sea as to what the procedure is.

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LIB

Ian Alistair Mackenzie (Minister of Veterans Affairs; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE:

Instructions have been sent out to all district officers in regard to the very point mentioned by my hon. friend, and the object is to ensure from the records of the Department of Veterans Affairs that the applicant is in fact a veteran and entitled to priority.

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PC

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Progressive Conservative

Mr. LOCKHART:

May I ask one supplementary question: there will not be any undue delay?

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LIB

Ian Alistair Mackenzie (Minister of Veterans Affairs; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE:

Oh, no.

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PC

Norman James Macdonald Lockhart

Progressive Conservative

Mr. LOCKHART:

Because there are scores ready to go ahead.

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LIB

Ian Alistair Mackenzie (Minister of Veterans Affairs; Leader of the Government in the House of Commons; Liberal Party House Leader)

Liberal

Mr. MACKENZIE:

No, there will be none at all.

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GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH


The house resumed from Friday, March 22, consideration of the motion of Mr. Fernand Viau for an address to His Excellency the Governor General in reply to his speech at the opening of the session, and the amendment thereto of Mr. Bracken, and the amendment to the amendment of Mr. Coldwell. Mr. JEAN-FRANQOIS POULIOT (Temiscouata): Mr. Speaker, I congratulate very sincerely the mover (Mr. Viau) and the seconder (Mr. Winters) on the address, who have spoken very well, and who deserve every praise for having performed excellently that duty. I will ask you, sir, to make a correction in the prayer that you have just read. You mentioned the governor general. We have none at the present time. The former governor has left us, and his successor has not yet arrived and has not been sworn in. We have an administrator, however, and I hope that at the next sitting you wild substitute the administrator for the governor general or will add the name of the administrator until the new governor is sworn in. I desire to offer my congratulations to the two ministers who have been appointed to the privy council at Westminster. The Minister of Finance (Mr. Ilsley) has received a reward for the work that he has done for Canada, for the British empire and for the countries in the sterling area, and as regards the Minister of Justice (Mr. St. Laurent), I do not believe it is an honour, but rather a recoignition of his excellent work in the government. There has been some controversy in the press about decorum in the House of Commons. The journalist who wrote it, and general subscribers who wrote to their papers, are not familiar with what happens at Westminster, because once I saw a gentleman of great distinction, Mr. Anthony Eden, with his feet on the clerk's table during a sitting, and when Lord Baldwin made his last speech at Westminster, Mr. Attlee, who is also a gentleman of distinction, had his derby on his head and his feet on the table while Lord Baldwin was bent over the treasury box about a foot and a half from Mr. Attlee's feet. But that did not disturb him. Of course he was a great agriculturist. One must not forget that disagreement is no offence and that the best way to be taken seriously by others is for a man not to take himself too seriously. When I am at home, far away in the province of Quebec, I read even the western papers, and in the Regina Leader of February 8 I saw a report The Address-Mr. Pouliot



of a talk given by my genial friend the member for Regina City (Mr. Probe). He said, and I thank him for it, that I was the most striking character in the House of Commons at Ottawa. He went on to say: "He is a Liberal who invariably criticizes the government", which is not always true, "but always votes with it", which is not always true. "He deliberately breaks all the rules of procedure", which is not true, "but has the faculty of obtaining all he wants for his constituency." I hope he will be right at the end of this session. Apart from all that, what my hon. friend said was correct. I will tell my hon. friends, through the chair, that I wish to cooperate with all of them, and to be useful to them as a member of parliament, and that is why I have asked certain questions on the order paper. They are not intended to embarrass the government. There is a purpose and a motive behind these questions. The first question in my name on the order paper is intended to find out what precisely we have done for Russia. It is difficult to answer that question, because for a time Russia obtained Canadian help through Great Britain. Everything that we had to send them passed through Great Britain. However, it would be well to know it. The questions on international policy are intended to find out where we stand now with all countries. I ask about cultural relations with Russia, and of course we have such relations-we have the ballet Russe. I am wondering however whether we have any other cultural relations with Russia. There is another question, one that has to do with the British commonwealth air training plan. Members of parliament were not informed at first about that plan. It was only a long time afterwards that we got information, and the reason why the plan was delayed was that some English industrialists-Nuffield, the iron lung man, or someone else-had to supply aeroplane propellers, which he did not do. At any rate, no member of the house was informed about it, and we did not learn anything until much later. There is another question, No. 48, which may seem strange because it asks whether any trainees from Australia and New Zealand * were killed or lost on their way to Canada to follow the B.C.A. training and, if so, when, and who were they. I also asked: Did the then minister of national defence for air declare to press reporters that the Hon. R. B. Hanson, K.C., M.P., and former leader of the opposition, was "Hitler's new recruit"? I asked that because he had said that some young men from the Antipodes were coming here for training. Another question was: 4 Was it said because the said Mr. Hanson had just referred publicly to the partnership of any sister dominion to the said plan? This was struck out but I would like to have it answered. There are thi;ee problems of major importance now before the house. There is the UNO matter, and you know we must read it instead of hearing it said to realize what it is, because UNO means that no one knows about it but UNO. As regards UNO, I always think of Mr. Churchill and Mr. Roosevelt at Casablanca, as they were planning the future of the world, making a distinction between great and small countries on the basis of what was said by the kaiser during the first world war, that might is right. The idea was to give more importance to the more powerful. It is not a question of right is might; might is right. Then there was the Atlantic charter, which was a palliative. Then the big three met at Teheran, Yalta and Potsdam, and we learned afterwards that in spite of what Woodrow Wilson had said about open diplomacy, secret promises had been made to Stalin. On March 13, 1944, I asked whether Canada had been represented at Teheran and Cairo, and the answer was "no." Then I asked another question: If not, as Canada bound by the decisions taken at such conferences? . The answer was: No, but obviously any conclusions relating to the conduct of the war reached by the representatives 'and -heads of governments participating in these conferences will carry very great authority with all memfoeirs of the united nations. , Afterwards we had the San Francisco conference. It started eleven months ago to-day. Then there was the conference at London, and another one is starting to-day in New York. Iran will be the No. 1 issue. At London there was a rumour that Canada was to be on the security council. Canada was not elected to that council on the understanding that we would have the secretaryship of the organization which we did not get. If we do not have anything on that, it is due precisely to the theory that might is right, that great powers have to decide the destiny of'the whole world. Let us see who is in New York to-day. The names of these gentlemen have appeared in the press. Who knows Lieutenant Colonel W. R. Llodgson of Australia? Who knows The Address-Mr. Pouliot Doctor Pedro Leao Yelloso of Brazil? Who knows Doctor Quo Tai-Chi of China? Who knows Mahmoud Hassan Pasha of Egypt? Who knows Ambassador Henri Bonnet of France? Who knows Foreign Minister Francisco Castillo Najera of Mexico? Who knows Eelco N. van Kleffens, of the Netherlands? Who knows Ambassador Oscar Lange of Poland?


?

An hon. MEMBER:

Everybody.

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IND

Jean-François Pouliot

Independent Liberal

Mr. POULIOT:

I am very serious. Who knows Mr. Byrnes? Who knows Edward R. Stettinius, Junior, of the United States? And who knows Sir Alexander Cadogan of Great Britain? Who knows Andrei A. Gromyko, of the Union of Socialist Soviet Republics? The hon. member for Cartier (Mr. Rose) may be the only one who knows him, but he is not in the house to-day.

At this conference Iran is the number one issue, and what is it? It is that at the end of the second world war we have not gone any farther than at the end of the first world war. In the first world war everybody was trying to get the oil wells of Iraq. At the end of the second world war the cause of trouble is precisely the oil wells of Iraq again, and the oil wells of Iran. We may hear a lot about democracy, about this and that, and future happiness and prosperity, but it is a matter of oil. Oil is the most expensive thing in the world because it has cost so many lives. The Russians are there, and they say: "We want it." The British are there, and they say: "We want it." The Americans are there also, and they also want it. The fight is around oil wells. Is it not incredible to think that the world has sunk so low as to forget all spiritual values and we are coming to the stage where we may have another war? Some people speak of it; some hon. gentlemen have mentioned it in the house during this debate. We hear a lot of people speak of it on the street, and it is just to serve either British interests, Russian interests or United States interests that we may be on the verge of a new war. It is unbelievable.

What is the use of arguing with these people? The diplomacy of Churchill and Roosevelt has failed lamentably. They had their qualities. Roosevelt was a man with a big heart. Churchill is a powerful orator, but they had several opportunities to come to some definite understanding with Stalin when they met him. Nothing was done. To-day Roosevelt has gone to a better world; Churchill is completely out of the picture because the English, the Scottish and the people of Northern Ireland no longer had confidence in his

government. He has no right to speak for the United Kingdom unless he has a mandate from the present government of the United Kingdom. But I have something to ask him as the survivor of those conferences with Stalin, and it is this: When you were representing not only the interests of your own country but the interests of other countries of the world, why did you not come to some definite arrangements with the Russians so that to-day we should not be in just as bad a position as we were during the war? The war is not finished; the war is still going on, in spite of the fact that our two most powerful enemies, Germany and Japan, have been brought to capitulation. There is still some trouble in China; there is still some trouble in Europe, and there is plenty of trouble in Asia. It shows that these men who had the fate of the world in their hands were not equal to their task. It is evident, too. How is' it that no one will say that, when it is the truth? I do not question their motives. Their motives were surely good, but they were not equal to the occasion.

We come now to another matter, namely, the British loan. It is incredible to think that Canada has financed the whole British empire during the war. She has financed not only the United Kingdom but also the sterling area, meaning all the countries which had British currency, the pound sterling. How was it done? It was done by increasing the national debt to an astronomical figure and by imposing upon the Canadian people the heaviest burden of taxation we have ever had-imposing it not only upon this generation but upon generations to come. And it is not finished; it is not settled. We financed them during the war. The war is over, yet we have to finance them again. And what do we get in return? We get the jumping up of members of parliament at Westminster, saying, "Good. That is very good. That is fine. Canada is a great country." What about the securities which were given by Great Britain to Canada for the special loan of. $700,000,000. the finest and most profitable of securities; Canadian Pacific Railway stock, Eno's fruit salts, et cetera.

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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Oh, oh.

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IND

Jean-François Pouliot

Independent Liberal

Mr. POULIOT:

One may laugh, but that stock brings in good revenue; and also all sorts of industrial securities. What happened? They were given as a guarantee of the loan, but through some Toronto brokers some of those securities were sent to New York via Toronto. When I suggested that the banking

The Address-Mr. Pouliot

and commerce committee should investigate the whole matter, I was not allowed to go on. A great deal of research work in that connection could be done. Smuts, who is a great imperialist, got back all the South African stocks from London. In the same way all the Indian stocks were taken back from London to India. The same thing has been done by the United States, and now Canada is the only country in the world which is willing to impose a burden upon its taxpayers without asking anything in return.

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?

An hon. MEMBER:

They did not pledge the C.P.R. stock, did they?

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IND

Jean-François Pouliot

Independent Liberal

Mr. POULIOT:

I did not mean to mention any particular stock; I mentioned the whole thing. They should come here; we should have them. We should have possession of everything that was given by way of guarantee. Instead it goes to the United States little by little, and we shall be left with nothing. It is just as silly as when the former minister of national defence for naval services refused to accept two ships which were offered as a gift by Great Britain. He would not accept anything. Well, any hon. member can make a gift from his own pocket. It is his own money; he is free to dispose of it as he wishes, but how can the government make a gift like that without first consulting the members of parliament or, if not all members, at least those who support the party, who are the bumpers for any reaction that may result in the country?

Mr. Speaker, Canada is the moon of the British sun. When the British sun sets in glory below the horizon it is time for the moon to rise; otherwise we shall be in complete darkness. There shall be no half-breed citizenship. If this country had not reached the stage where one is not ashamed to call himself in the first place a Canadian, then we shall have no legislation conferring a hyphenated citizenship. And the question of our citizenship should be decided before that of a Canadian flag. It is only after it is decided that we shall be in a position to decide whether or not we shall have a distinctive Canadian flag. I want hon. members to think a little about questions of citizenship; to realize that Igor Gouzenko, though Russian by birth, is a good Canadian, and that the hon. member for Cartier is more of a bolshevik than a Canadian. Those who are imperialists can hardly blame the hon. member for Cartier. He does not think first of Canada; he thinks first of another country. The imperialists think first of another country; they think first of the United Kingdom, and we cannot tell them any-

thing. If we say, "Well, that is the way it is done in Great Britain," they bow their heads in great respect and it is all right. They live in another age. They are Victorians. They are not up to date; they do not belong to modern times. I do not say this in any offensive way, but I believe we shall never be able to have good government in this country so long as we have that small group of imperialists, who are just as noisy as the Tories are in my county, where three Tories can cry as loudly as a whole parish. They say, "Let us not speak of Canada; let us not speak of Canadian citizenship; let us not speak of a Canadian flag. Let us remain colonials so that we will not deceive anyone." Then we shall have a big union jack, the biggest possible, which will be the emblem of colonialism and serfdom. Then we shall know where we are; we will make the point, as navigators say.

Hon. members will remember that last session I complained bitterly about the strike of stevedores in Great Britain which prevented the British people from having food. Now according to the newspapers there is another strike, of tugs, and again the British people will not have food. I was informed that before Christmas a shipment of turkeys was sent to Great Britain. It was not landed there because of the strike. The shipment was brought back to Canada; and when those turkeys which had made the return trip to the United Kingdom were served, they tasted of the ocean salt. If the only purpose of the loan were to feed the British people, unquestionably I would be for it. I do not know yet what I will do. But if it is to be used to carry on war in Indonesia and throughout the world, then I am against it because I want peace. I will not vote for the granting of money to Great Britain in order to encourage imperialism, because I am against it.

I am in full accord with what has been said by a very capable journalist, a member of the press gallery representing L'Action Catholique, Mr. Lorenzo Pare. He has been elected vicepresident of the press gallery, and I congratulate him upon that election. My dear friend, Mr. McDougall, has been elected president of the gallery, and I want to congratulate him. Mr. Pare has written masterly and powerful articles opposing the loan on the grounds of patriotism. As he states, a man cannot have patriotism for a country other than his own. One must have patriotism for the country of his birth, the country in which he lives, the country in which he has chosen to bring up his family, the country in'which he expects to be buried. Such a man is a patriot. But the

The Address-Mr. Pouliot

man who always thinks of another country before making any decision is unquestionably wrong.

Here in Ottawa we live in an atmosphere different from that of the rest of the country. My good friend the hon. member for Broadview (Mr. Church), has rightly said that the atmosphere of Ottawa is different from that of the rest of the country. We live under an illusion. The government is undhr the illusion that it governs, but government is really in the hands of men whom nobody knows. Certain men will decide just what our contribution will be to the UNO. Those who will decide that will be, among others, the representatives of the trouble-maker, Russia. They are the bosses, and we agreed to that without thinking of what was right and without thinking of spiritual values.

Then there is a third question, the arrest of a member of parliament who has been accused of being a spy for another country. This is a delicate matter to discuss, because I have consideration for all members of parliament. He is a colleague; he has been elected by the electors of his constituency. I disagree strongly with what the hon. member for Quebec South (Mr. Power) said in his most contradictory speech the other night. My friend the leader of the C.C.F. (Mr. Coldwelf) thought that it was one of the finest speeches ever delivered. It reminds me of a judge whom I once asked to let me have some of his unreported judgments to include in the Municipal Code which I published years ago. He sent me a number of these judgments and I quoted a few of them. When the book was published I sent him a copy and the next time he met me he said, "My boy, that is the finest book I have ever seen." Perhaps the hon. member for Rosetown-Biggar has the same reason for thinking that speech was so good.

Salus populi, suprema lex is an old Latin' axiom of law-the salvation of the people and the security of the people are the supreme law. It is a fine thing to talk about the magna eharta, but I do not believe that all the walls of the old Irish home of the father of the hon. member for Quebec South were papered with the magna eharta. Probably there was a picture of the hon. member for Quebec South playing hockey somewhere around the place, instead of the magna eharta being on all the walls of the room.

Centuries after the magna eharta, history records that there was what w'as called the gunpowder plot in Great Britain. The purpose of that plot was to blow up the king and parliament. This conspiracy has not been forgotten; for in England at the beginning of each session Mr. Speaker inspects the cellars

to make sure that there is no conspirator anywhere in the parliament buildings. That is exactly what the government has done. My only regret is that we were not informed earlier about it. The government must defend the state against any one who attacks it. The Tories may attack the Liberals; I may attack the Tories or criticize the government; that is our right. But no one in this country can be against ali of us; no one in this country can be against this country. The government was right in making an investigation which has unfolded the threat of this conspiracy. It shows how careful we must be with diplomats; it shows how careful we must be in checking the relations, social or otherwise, of the civil service with outside powers.

The hon. member for Quebec South complained of the shock to his ideas of liberty. This order in council was passed by virtue of bill No. 15, which was introduced by the Minister of Justice and had its first reading on October 5, 1945. On that same day the hon. member for Quebec South spoke in connection with another matter. A copy of bill No. 15 was delivered to the hon. member, as it was to every one of us. If he thought it was so important, why did he not stay here and discuss the measure with all the power he has at his command when he wants to say something? He did not do it.

On looking at the index for Hansard of last session I find that there are only two references under the name of the hon. member for Quebec South. These are:

Royal Canadian Air Force, 836-37

War expenditures and demobilization bill, 836-37.

That is all; he just made a little speech. Then I will go further. Tim Buck was imprisoned at a time when the hon. member for Quebec South was a member of the cabinet. He did not resign. Mayor Houde was imprisoned, and the hon. member for Quebec South did not resign although Mayor Houde was a member of the Quebec legislative assembly as well as being mayor of Montreal. The hon. member shared the responsibility for that. One of our most esteemed colleagues, the hon. member for Portneuf (Mr. Gauthier) was arrested. He was confined to gaol, accused of a crime of which he was not guilty. The member for Quebec South was then a minister, but he did not resign from the government. How, then, does he protest vigorously now against the arrest of one of our colleagues, an arrest which was a state necessity at the time?

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LIB

William Henry Golding

Liberal

The ACTING SPEAKER (Mr. Golding):

Order. The hon. member has exhausted his time.

The Address-Mr. Pouliot

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?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Go on.

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IND

Jean-François Pouliot

Independent Liberal

Mr. POULIOT:

I do not want to take up too much time, but there is another thing that I do not understand. I have a clipping here of December 13, 1944. It will be remembered that someone who ivas very close to the big powers left the plans for the invasion of Normandy in the library at the Chateau Frontenac in Quebec. The clipping is dated September 13, but naturally the incident happened the year before, and we see that a major got a decoration and a non-commissioned officer was also decorated, but no one was arrested for such grave carelessness. Action should have been taken against any general, however big and powerful he might be, to have him arrested because he was compromising the success of the plan for the invasion of Normandy, which resulted in victory over Germany. But nothing of that sort was done. It was treated as just an ordinary matter. In that case justice was not severe enough.

I gave an interview in February last to a paper which is published in my constituency. The interview was about the atomic bomb and the Canadian loan. But I will say only this, that I am not at all surprised at the Russian conspiracy, because at the time of the padlock law I notified the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) of the intrigues that were being carried on by the Russians, and told him that although some of his ministers- the present Minister of Justice (Mr. St. Laurent) was not a member of parliament at the time were in favour of disallowing the padlock law, I opposed such a step. I told the Prime Minister that the cardinal has more influence than Tim Buck, and the Prime Minister understood that it would have been very unwise to disallow the padlock law at the time. It was left on the statute book, and there was no trouble. But I gave names to .the Prime Minister, and I told him that that was the way in which Russia was handling diplomatic business. It is all right to do business with any other party provided the other party acts like a gentleman. But let us stop all aid to Russia if they will not compromise and come to terms.

There is something else that I want to say. What the leader of the Social Credit group said in this debate was right, and the confirmation of what he said about McGill can be found in the fact that Doctor Boyer has been suspended from McGill. It is not the first time that there have been seditious professors at McGill, Toronto and Queen's. One professor at Queen's has just been arrested. I remember the time when King

[The Acting Speaker (Mr. Golding).]

Gordon was a professor in Toronto. I complained about him, also about the teaching that was being given to McGill students, and in the Montreal papers that same night there was a protest from Colonel Bovey, the man who makes molasses peaches that pay him well. He said I was wrong. But what happened after that? Sir Edward Beatty, who was the chancellor of McGill, took the first opportunity to go to Queen's university to give a calling down to the students of his Alma Mater. I asked him for some of his speeches to the youths and he sent me all those speeches except the one that he had delivered at Queen's after Colonel Bovey's protest.

What is happening in the case of the member for Cartier, and what is happening now in this country, should be a lesson for us. We should be very careful in our dealings with other nations. We should develop a Canadian spirit so that our people will start to think of this country before thinking of anyone else. If I disagreed- with -the member for Quebec South on some points, there was one on which I agreed with him and that was when he spoke of various political affiliations and putting some other country before one's own. I know that it will be very hard for some members to extirpate that obsolete feeling of inferiority that exists in some places, but every time they attempt to do it they will be satisfied that they have performed a national duty.

Mr. W. CHESTER S. McLURE (Queens): I had intended if His Honour the Speaker were in his seat to say at the beginning of my remarks that I was not rising to ask any questions for which I might be called to order. But to relieve your mind, sir, I will say the same to you.

The hon. member who preceded me (Mr. Pouliot) would not expect me to follow him i-n his fluent remarks, and my reference as such to his speech is all that he can expect from me at the present time. If I attempted to follow him I should not have time to get my own remarks on the record.

This debate, Mr. Speaker, may be called one of the chief conventions of parliament, since it affords to a great many of us an opportunity to speak on almost any subject and to mention some of the major problems we have in our respective constituencies.

Last session, when speaking on the address, I extended due congratulations to those who in my opinion deserved them. This time I will follow the time-honoured custom, and I sincerely congratulate the mover (Mr. Viau) and the seconder (Mr. Winters) of the address. The mover of the address deserves special

The Address-Mr. McLure

commendation, because he spoke fluently and with great eloquence in his mother tongue. I hope that he can do the same when he comes to speak in the English language; he will have a distinct advantage over most hon. members. The seconder of the address always makes a good speech. His speech on this occasion was free from any of the embarrassments which attend some of the rest of us when we speak in this chamber. I therefore congratulate both hon. members. I know full well that the leader of their party was greatly pleased with their remarks, as these gentlemen came through and kept to the straight and narrow path of liberalism.

The text before me to-day is the speech from the throne. I have read it several times. It is of great length, but it does not offer as much as I thought it would. It makes several offers of something for nothing, but has very little for the jobless citizen of Canada. It is a brief prepared by the cabinet and placed in the hands of His Excellency to be read to the House of Commons and the Senate; consequently any remarks I may make in criticism of it are not a criticism of the governor general, because this document was handed to him by his constitutional advisers.

Criticisms of this speech have to do with some of its omissions and also some of its commissions.

As I have said, the speech is lengthy, and it was prepared by the cabinet; but when I read a few days ago the speech recently made by the Minister of National Revenue (Mr. McCann) in his constituency of Renfrew South, I began to think that either the speech from the throne was not prepared by the cabinet, or that while it was being prepared the minister was asleep. No doubt the minister has been rapped over the wrists for his expressions with reference to taxation. He is reported as having said that there were great things coming in the speech from the throne in this respect, that there were to be large reductions in the corporation tax, personal income taxes, and taxes of all kinds. So optimistic was he on this matter that he is reported as having said that "it will be about fifty per cent reduction." That must have been a pleasing announcement for his constituents to listen to. How popular he must have been on that occasion! But in view of what the speech from the throne has to offer them, what will they say to him upon his next visit? However, when the subject of taxation comes up under the budget we shall have-perhaps I may have-an opportunity of contrasting the enthusiastic minister's speech with the realities as disclosed by the budget.

The speech from the throne allows us some latitude in our remarks. During the fall session of 1945, speaking in the debate on the speech from the throne, I said that our province had been neglected under the terms of confederation. I was pleased to find that I had proved to quite a number of ministers that we are really neglected. In fact I thought I was getting along fairly well when the Minister of Veterans Affairs (Mr. Mackenzie), the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier), and the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Fournier) were quite liberal in what they did for my province, and for all of which I was very thankful. But within the last few days there has come an advertising blast which has rocked us right down to the ocean. Last Friday I endeavoured- to ask the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. MacKinnon) a question in reference to a map and pictures which appeared in the New York Times of March 17, and from which map Prince Edward Island is entirely deleted. The Minister of Trade and Commerce did not have an opportunity to reply at that time, as I was called to order by Mr. Speaker and required to sit down; but to-day I am glad to report that I have in my possession

it was handed to me as I came into the house-a letter from the minister which practically answers my question. With his permission- I have already asked for it-I am going to read the letter.

Dear Mr. McLure:

My secretary notified me of your intention to ask about some map -that had -been published, presumably by -this department, in the New York Times and that had omitted Prince Edward Island.

I -purpose seeing the map to which you refer. Map publications of this department -are trade routes maps; map in the -hand book we publish, and our travel bureau map, ail of which show Prince Edward Island in its proper place.

I can asure you th-at I would join- you in protest a-gainet -the omission from any map of Canada of Prince Edward Island, -Canada's smallest -province but in many ways one of -its loveliest.

I am so-rry that I did not have an opportunity to say on the floor of the house just what I have sai-d now.

This is signed by the Hon. James A. MacKinnon. It is much better, and I know that he will look into this matter and not allow such omissions of our province, the cradle of confederation, from advertising by the department.

I might mention another matter with reference to this advertising. I have before me a beautiful little -calendar. I have not been able to find out who put it out, who authorized it, or anything else, but it is made up of tourist scenes and tourist views throughout Canada, starting on the first page with the

The Address-Mr. McLure

majestic parliament buildings, and it gives two or three views from every province except one, Prince Edward Island.

This adverse advertising, when we are all looking for tourists, when our province has been struggling year after year to better conditions and to obtain greater tourist traffic, is certainly something for us to complain about. Looking at the map I was disturbed, because I had a constituency when I came here and I did not know whether I -was going to have one when I got home, if I was to judge by the map. I should not be able to sing that old song which is familiar to all hon. gentlemen, "I had a hat when I came in, and I had a hat when I went out." I did not know whether I should be able to sing that I had a constituency when I came in and that I had a constituency when I went out. The tourist industry is of such importance to us that we should like to have the very best for our share of the advertising which the travel bureau, or whoever puts out this advertising, can possibly give us.

May I now refer to one of our problems. I do so because I have some figures which I wish to put before the house. I refer now to our truck transportation problem. The handicap to Prince Edward Island and her participation in the advantages of truck transportation from and to the mainland via Borden and Tormentine are practically prohibitive to us according to the rates we are charged. I quoted these rates in detail last year, and now I will submit only the rates on a five-ton truck carrying a load from and to. I will give simply these particular rates. The rate for a five-ton truck loaded with a first class commodity, return trip with a similar load, crossing the straits, is $60.65. For second class material it would be $54.65; for a third class commodity $50.65; for a fourth class commodity $44.65. If the truck were to return empty the rates for the different classes would be from $40.65 down to $32.65. This is for a distance of IS miles. It costs for a five-ton truck with a first class commodity $3.37 per mile to cross the straits. These rates that 1 have just given are based on the assumption that the truck can be transported without-loading from a platform. If it is driven onto a platform there is an extra charge of $10.

Let me discuss this with reference to the authorities that have to do with it. First of all, the agreement that my province entered into was made with the Dominion of Canada, and I am going to put on record again one

clause which provides that our transportation system shall be kept up to date. You will find this in the agreement:

That the Dominion of Canada shall -assume and defray all the charges for the efficient steam service, for the conveyance of -mails -and passengers, to be established -and -maintained between the island-

Meaning Prince Edward Island.

and the -mainland of the dominion, winter and summer-, thus placing the island in continuous communication with the Intercolonial railway and the railway system of the dominion, and such other charges as may -be incident to and connected w-i-th the services which -by the British North America Act of 1867 -appertain to the general government and as are or -may be -allowed to the other provinces.

That binding term of our agreement is the one on which I base my remarks. In the fall session of 1945 I endeavoured to place this truck problem before the Minister of Transport, but it was in the hit-or-miss days when estimates were going through at the rate of millions per minute. However, on page 3685 of Hansard of December 17, 1945, I find that I asked the Minister of Transport a question. I made this statement:

I want the Minister of Transport to set the -rate himself.

The minister replied:

The Minister of Transport cannot set the rate.

Mr. McLure: Does the minister tell this

committee -that he has no authority over rates?

Mr. Chevrier: I said that the miister could

not set the rate.

M-r. McLure: Does the minister -mean by

that, that the government cannot set -the ra-te*?

Mr. Chewier: I will explain what I mean

when I answer the -hon. gentleman.

Then on page 3686 of the same Hansard,

the same day, the minister, replying to some remarks of mine, said, referring to myself:

He is of the opinion -that the Minister of Transport should eliminate what lie calls these prohibitive rates. I say to him -that the minister has no -authority to do that. The rates are -filed with the board of transport commissioners on automobiles -and trucks carried by the -Canadian National Railways on the ferry between the island and the -mainland, and it would a-ppea-r from -the information I -have at hand that -anyone who wishes to complain about these rates can do so before the -board. I am -not prepared to disagree with the hon. gentleman upon the amount of these -rates. The explanation given before the railways -and ship- p-in-g committee by -the president of the Canadian National Railways was that in fixing the rates on the ferry regard had to be had to similar railway rates.

I should now like to refer to what the president said. We can find it at page 86 of

The Address-Mr. McLure

the report of the railways and shipping committee. The hon. member for Rosedale (Mr. Jackman) asked this question:

Are the rates on the ferry high, and does the C.N.R. set them?

He was there referring to the Northumberland ferry. It was a very good question. Here is- the reply given by the president of the Canadian National Railways:

We do not think the rates are 'unusually high. Of course, everything that goes over on the ferry is in direct competition with the railway.

He does not think that a rate of $3.37 per mile for taking a truck is prohibitive or high. He then goes on to say this, which is a classic:

We think we are generous in .allowing the trucks to go on the ferry at all.

This is a ferry owned by the Dominion of Canada. The boat and equipment were built by the Dominion of Canada, and yet the subcontractor makes the statement that we ought to be pleased to be allowed to take our trucks over, even though the rate were twice as high as it is.

I have no complaints against the Canadian National Railways; they are running the service. But I do complain that the government are not doing justice to Prince Edward Island in permitting those excessive rates to be charged. I could hardly believe that the president of the Canadian National Railways would say "we think we are generous in allowing the trucks to go on the ferry at all," this man who occupied the position of president of the Canadian National Railways could not have known what the rates were when he spoke thus. I have confidence in his ability and common sense, and I am sure that if he had known of the rates which I have put on the record to-day his reply would not have been as I have stated. Instead it would be something like this: Yes, the rates are ridiculously high, and no province with a guarantee from the dominion government should stand for such treatment. I feel certain that he would have put it in still stronger terms. This year I 'hope to have an opportunity to appear before that committee and to give them a true picture of our transportation problem.

Let me for a moment refer to what some of the prime ministers and leaders of the different parties have said, and how they have viewed our situation. For thirty-five years we made practically no advance whatever in our transportation problem. In 1911 the province began to exert itself with regard to the fulfilment of the agreement of union. At that time Sir Robert Borden came to our province. He had made a study of our problem, and he made definite promises to us with regard to the

ferry. I am proud to say that through these promises and the study he had made of them we have our present ferry system. Sir Wilfrid Laurier said in the House of Commons in 1912, as reported at page 5680 of Hansard:

Prince Edward Island has not profited by confederation. For some years past it has been losing its population by reason of its connection with Canada and going backwards instead of forward.

The Right Hon. R. B. Bennett also studied our problems and gave us a further fulfilment of our contract. The present Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) has made a study of the matter, and definite promises were made by him for further fulfilment. I was unable to locate to-day his exact words, in Hansard and on the public platform, but he did give assurance of further fulfilment of our contract. To show you, Mr. Speaker, that the present Prime Minister is in accord with the view we hold that the agreement is not being lived up to, I shall quote what the Hon. Charles A. Dunning, a former Minister of Finance of the Liberal government had to say when he was seeking election in my constituency. He was not speaking without the consent of the Prime Minister. Mr. Dunning contended, as had all others, that the water separating Prince Edward Island from the mainland of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia was the king's highway, and that we were entitled to have it negotiated at the" expense of the federal government. Here are his exact words:

It is in tlie bond of confederation agreement and .must be honoured and its obligations fulfilled.

He was elected by acclamation. Your humble servant chose not to oppose him. I am not presuming too much when I say that on that occasion Mr. Dunning was the mouthpiece of the Prime Minister. Therefore I give the Prime Minister credit for these encouraging words with reference to our problem.

We had other men come down there time after time and study our problem. For instance, the leader of my party in this house (Mr. Bracken) made a study of this problem prior to the 1945 election. He spent considerable time there, and he had practical experience with the ferry which gave him fuller knowledge of our transportation problem. In his opening campaign speech the hon." gentleman promised that if his party were elected there would be proper fulfilment of the terms of confederation with regard to our transportation; and I believe that had he been elected,, this would have been done.

*m

The Address-Mr. McLure

During the same campaign the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Gardiner) was in our prov-[DOT] ince, no doubt in behalf of the Prime Minister who was unable to come there. I did not hear that fluent gentleman at that time, but from what I read in the newspapers he was not far behind anyone else in making promises in regard to our transportation. He is here in the chamber at the present time. I will say that I believe he was sincere, and according to what appeared in the press his statements were to the same effect as those of Mr. Dunning, when he said, "It is yours by right, because it is in the bond of agreement." I may not be quoting nearly all that was said by the hon. gentleman on that occasion, but I am sure if there was more' he will say so when I am through.

In addition to the matter of automobiles and trucks we had other promises made in reference to our roads and the things that should be given to us. As well as the ferry we should have a highway to connect us with the mainland by the Tormentine-Borden route; and some day I hope we shall be given that highway under the terms of confederation. It should be a super-highway, such as all the other provinces have; it should go from Borden to Charlottetown, the shortest route to the capital city, which would save us a drive of fourteen miles. This would require 'the construction of one bridge, the Brighton bridge, which according to some estimates would cost nearly a million dollars. I do not know how far the Minister of Agriculture went in his remarks in reference to that subject, but I do know that at several meetings the Liberal candidates in our constituency said this bridge would be built as part of the highway. All the candidates gave the same pledge, so when the Minister of Reconstruction and Supply (Mr. Howe) begins his task I hope we will have an opportunity of presenting this matter in connection with our highway.

I might mention many other things in connection with our transportation. Last session the Minister of Transport (Mr. Chevrier) dealing with this matter, said at page 3685 of Hansard for December 17, 1945:

My hon. friend is not unmindful of the fact that already we have made 'commitments for improving the facilities at Tormentine and Borden. . . .

It does not matter under whose department it is. At the moment it is under the Department of Transport, but that is aside from the question. We are spending on these facilities somewhere in the neighbourhood of $5,500,000. That is over and above the new ferry boat, which will cost between $4,500,000 and $5,000.000. That is over $11,000,000 fo-r these facilities. So that I am sure the hon. gentleman eannot say that we are not looking with interest into the transportation problems between Prince Edward Island and the mainland.

I say now, as I said then, that I appreciate the interest the minister is taking in our problem, but I want to tell him now it will require another $12,000,000 to bring our transportation up to the standard guaranteed to us in our terms of agreement with the dominion government.

If time permitted, Mr. Speaker, I should like to say a few words in reference to the other ferry and its system of operation, but in conclusion may I say that for over fifty years my province has been deprived of the efficient, continuous service which was guaranteed by confederation. How therefore can any government expect us to be fully satisfied with a service operated by a subcontractor who is not interested in the terms of confederation? As I said before, when I make that statement concerning the subcontractors I do not intend to criticize them, but I do criticize the dominion government for not seeing to the fulfillment of the terms of confederation as they deal with us. Public opinion is behind us. During the past year I have noticed editorials in some of our leading newspapers, all voicing the opinion that this stretch of water must be treated as a highway, as a bridge, as part of the trans-Canada highway, with no cost to traffic other than the normal cost of moving a truck or other vehicle nine miles on the highway. Public opinion will support that; and not until we get a better service at a proper rate can we be content; nor can we be satisfied until our agreement with the dominion government has been fulfilled.

Topic:   GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH
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March 25, 1946