It states nothing about who shall take care of the expenses incurred in doing that; and it certainly was not the intention of -the mover of this amendment that those expenses should be charged against the farmers through the wheat board. When the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Howe) comes back to this house, I hope any legislation he may present to take care of the serious situation which exists in the west will not be along that line, and that it will not make provision for an advance to the farmers on wheat that has not been threshed or that is under the snow in western Canada, which advance will be made by the wheat board, and that any losses which may be incurred as a result of that advance be a charge against the wheat board. If that is the type of legislation he intends to introduce I can assure the government that it will be opposed by those of us on this side of the house.
I know the hon. member for The Battle-fords (Mr. Bater) quite well. He is a practical farmer. When he introduced this subamendment I am sure he would have much preferred to introduce one which would add something to the amendment rather than one which merely expresses a pious hope. I am afraid he was in the unfortunate position where he could not offer any subamendment which would be an addition. The Minister of Trade and Commerce has not yet returned. Until he does, and until he informs the government what the government's policy is going to be with regard to any further advances, the government members find themselves in the position that they cannot offer anything in the way of substantial help to the farmers in western Canada. Apparently this is a one-man government.
We did not bring in this amendment with the idea that it met all the problems this year in western Canada. We introduced this amendment for one purpose, namely to get provision made for an advance on farm stored grain. That is something we in western Canada have been asking for, and which farm organizations have been asking for many years. A vote for the subamendment is a vote against the policy the farmers of western Canada have been asking for over a number of years now. That is the effect of it. It is voting for some pious hope rather than voting for something concrete, something we have been asking for over a number of years, which is quite another matter. When the amendment was introduced I stated that I thought it was good but that to meet the situation which existed this year some additional assistance was necessary. I
1628 HOUSE OF
The Address-Mr. Wright recognized the fact that some additional assistance was necessary. Because the Minister of Trade and Commerce had indicated that the government were considering something in the way of further assistance, we did not extend our amendment. As reported at page 1546 of Hansard I stated:
I hope the government will give serious consideration to the amendment moved by the hon. member for Assiniboia. As I said before, I do not think it goes far enough to meet the needs of all sections of the west at this time, but it is a step in the right direction. It is a good piece of permanent legislation which we should have on our statute books.
That is all we were offering, a sound amendment which would instruct the government to place on our statute books legislation which would make it possible for an advance to be made to farmers on grain stored on the farm. I hope western members will oppose the subamendment offered by the hon. member for The Battlefords because, in voting for it, they are voting against the best interests of the farmers in western Canada; they are voting against something for which the farmers in western Canada have been asking consistently over the last number of years, namely an advance on farm stored grain.
Subtopic: CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON ADDRESS IN REPLY