April 4, 1967

LIB

Paul Theodore Hellyer (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. Hellyer:

Would the hon. member not like to hear this? It might amuse him. The definition goes like this:

Experts have their expert fun

Ex cathedra telling one

Just how nothing can be done.

Topic:   SITTING SUSPENDED
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?

An hon. Member:

Who said that?

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LIB

Paul Theodore Hellyer (Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. Hellyer:

The author is a philosopher -Piet Hein.

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PC

Donald MacInnis

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Maclnnis (Cape Breton South):

I always thought an expert was a man from out of town.

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PC

John (Jack) McIntosh

Progressive Conservative

Mr. McIntosh:

I am sure the house was pleased to hear advice from the expert. I am not sure all members of this house would agree with the interpretation the minister seems to place on the words he read. It seems to me that it is facetious for a minister to get up in a debate such as this and quote a passage of that sort. I suggest the minister should take the discussion more seriously.

[DOT] (9:50 p.m.)

Representing a great number of naval people as we do, we have to go back to our constituencies and tell them what this unification problem is all about and how it is going to work out. Although I do not give my support to the minister, and am not a supporter of his leader, the Prime Minister, I am very proud when the Prime Minister appears anywhere I am. All Canadian people take pride in his appearance in their midst. We are in a democracy and we in this parliament are in opposition. We are embarassed by the things the government does. We are embarrassed by the comments from other countries saying what they think about unification, but also we are very proud when Canada does something that is notable throughout the world.

We are always very proud of our armed forces, no matter what their role. They have always conducted themselves in a proper manner. We have made friends through the armed forces that we have in Europe, and when we go over there as tourists we are proud of the behaviour of our troops.

We do not want to let our troops become the laughingstock of all the ports of the world. Our sailors say this is what will happen. If the minister continues his determination to rush this bill through, then any effort

April 4, 1967 COMMONS

we make is well worth while if we can delay its passage until possibly the government is defeated and another government takes over. It will take a long time to repair the destruction created by the minister. I hope we do not live to see the day that we regret what will take place because of the passage of this bill.

Military experts have stated on numerous occasions that it would be foolhardy in the extreme to assume that recruiting, poor as it already is, will not drastically deteriorate further under unification of the regular services. They maintain that if this bill is passed, then within the next few years Canada will probably find herself facing again the unhappy and politically dangerous question of compulsory national service because of manpower requirements. Under unification this conscription issue is almost inevitable.

I would caution some of my hon. friends on the other side of the chamber, who in the past have violently opposed compulsory military service, violently opposed conscription, to remember that when they get up and vote for this bill the result of its passage is likely to be conscription. This consideration alone should give parliament serious reason to pause and consider, before blindly endorsing this military fantasy.

Equally important, Canadian unification may place unlooked for commitments on our present allies, and in particular on the United States navy in meeting the Soviet submarine threat. I submit that present conditions do warrant further reflection on this defence issue, and I request the minister to pay heed to some of the pleas from this side of the chamber and withdraw the bill for further consideration. Some of the damage that has been done to him may be undone if he would be big enough to accede to this request.

I am sure that after listening to all the witnesses before the defence committee the minister must feel he is taking a serious risk. I do not want to say anything about his military experience, but I suggest that the number of people he has had to deal with since taking office, experienced military career officers, men of stature, should have had some effect on him through their advice.

This brings up the question that has been asked about the minister's treatment of Admiral Landymore. When the minister made a statement on the reason Admiral Landymore was fired, and then found out his discharge was not warranted, I cannot understand why he does not reinstate him once

National Defence Act Amendment again so that Canada may again be served by this man of experience.

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LIB

Herman Maxwell Batten (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

The Chairman:

Order. I must advise the hon. member that the time allotted to him has expired.

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PC

Michael Starr (Official Opposition House Leader; Progressive Conservative Party House Leader)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Starr:

Carry on.

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LIB

Herman Maxwell Batten (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

The Chairman:

Does the committee give unanimous consent for the hon. member to continue?

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PC

John (Jack) McIntosh

Progressive Conservative

Mr. McIntosh:

I have expired, Mr. Chairman.

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PC

Gordon Minto Churchill

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Churchill:

Mr. Chairman, there is hardly time tonight for me to do justice to a topic as interesting, engaging and serious as the unification bill in the two minutes that are left, so may I just make a comment with regard to the hon. member for Lambton West who contributed some semi-complimentary remarks about me.

The hon. member for Lambton West is a genial member of the house. He was a good attender at the meetings of the defence committee. He is what I call an anchor man in a committee, a man who is always there and who can be relied upon to do whatever he is told. He is the type of committee member that a minister likes to have, and his attendance at the defence committee should put him in line for promotion of some sort or another.

He gave unthinking obedience to the minister and to the minister's very active assistant during the course of committee meetings, and without any great thought to the bill he responded to all the suggestions made to him by the minister or the minister's assistant. In fact he reminded me of a Colonel Blimp in civilian clothes, and his genial attitude made it possible for us to put up with him and rather enjoy his company from time to time, but his contribution to the committee proceedings was not any greater than his contribution to the debate tonight. I was sorry that the hon. member stumbled a bit tonight when he was reading some of that Lee stuff that had been placed in front of him. He should have had a little more time to study it and get the sentences straightened out.

Tomorrow, Mr. Chairman, I want to deal with the basic feature of the bill which is touched upon in clause 2. This clause modifies the present statute which, if I may paraphrase it, says that the Canadian forces shall consist of the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army and the Royal Canadian Air

14538 COMMONS DEBATES April 4, 1967

Proceedings on Adjournment Motion

Force. The amendment in this bill strikes out Royal Canadian Navy, Canadian Army and Royal Canadian Air Force. In other words it eliminates the three services that we have known in the past. It destroys their identity and it is that subject which I wish to deal with tomorrow. May I now call it ten o'clock?

Progress reported.

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BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE

PC

Gordon Minto Churchill

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Churchill:

I was wondering, Mr. Speaker, if I could ask whoever is leading the house what business do we switch to tomorrow?

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill (Minister of Transport)

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

I did not realize I was leading the house, but since the hon. gentleman-

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PC
LIB

John Whitney Pickersgill (Minister of Transport)

Liberal

Mr. Pickersgill:

I think I am doing as well leading the house, in my absent minded way, as hon. gentlemen opposite are in carrying on the debate. We will go on with the unification bill and give them more scope for tomorrow.

[DOT] (10:00 p.m.)

Topic:   BUSINESS OF THE HOUSE
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PROCEEDINGS ON ADJOURNMENT MOTION


A motion to adjourn the house under provisional standing order 39A deemed to have been moved.


INDIAN AFFAIRS-INQUIRY AS TO PAYMENT OF KINDERGARTEN TEACHERS

NDP

Frank Howard

New Democratic Party

Mr. Frank Howard (Skeena):

Mr. Speaker,

I know the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (Mr. Laing) feels proud of the increasing expenditure that the Indian Affairs branch has made over the past few years in respect of education. I know he appreciates, perhaps to a greater extent than do some of his colleagues, the necessity to concentrate efforts in the field of education for our native people.

With the increasing population of native Indian people, consequently there are more younger people involved and this is part of the reason for the increased expenditure on education. Many, in fact most, native Indian parents did not, on balance, have the same educational opportunities that the non-Indian people have. In many instances there was a denial of educational opportunities. As a consequence of that and as a consequence of the fact that some of the Indian communities

are relatively isolated and have been for some years, Indian children in some cases have a more difficult time developing their learning ability, and the speed with which they grasp things in school.

This situation is more difficult in isolated communities. It is the isolated communities, the Indian communities wherein there are day schools as distinct from the integrated schools, about which I should like to speak this evening. I should like to make special reference to kindergarten classes. I think we must concentrate on bending over backwards in an effort to assist in placing more emphasis on kindergarten classes, and that age group of children, so they will have a better opportunity to proceed through school at a pace comparable to that at which non-Indian children proceed through school. This is recognized by the department.

I should like to make reference to a form letter which was sent to the principals and chief councillors from the district superintendent of Indian schools at Prince Rupert. The subject is kindergarten classes, and the letter reads as follows:

The branch is willing to provide books for teachers and supplies for a village kindergarten operated by a kindergarten committee.

That certainly is a recognition of the necessity to place some emphasis on kindergarten classes. The letter goes on to say that classes can be held at certain times and then makes reference to the age of the pupils who would attend in the 1967-68 year. Here are two other sentences which I should like to quote in their entirety:

We are unable, at this time, to provide wages for those in charge, and so they must be voluntary workers.

It is suggested that, if the people of the village are interested, the principal of the school and the council discuss this matter, and advise me of their plans.

The letter is signed by Dr. C. E. Johnson.

I would urge the minister to expand what is already a policy of recognition of the necessity to extend kindergarten classes, and to expand the policy which now offers books and supplies from the branch for kindergarten classes. I would hope that this would be expanded into a recognition that it may be necessary to employ teachers to teach in kindergartens in order to ensure that there is some continuity of approach in kindergarten classes for the native children, and so that the native children will have that much more opportunity to proceed through school and make the most use of our educational system.

April 4, 1967 COMMONS

Proceedings on Adjournment Motion

Topic:   INDIAN AFFAIRS-INQUIRY AS TO PAYMENT OF KINDERGARTEN TEACHERS
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April 4, 1967