January 22, 1969

?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear.

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LIB

Otto Emil Lang (Minister Without Portfolio)

Liberal

Mr. Lang (Saskatoon-Humboldt):

I suggest hon. members opposite are doing a disservice to their constituents in this respect.

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PC

John (Jack) Henry Horner

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Horner:

You people would rather subsidize the banks.

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LIB

Daniel Aiken Lang

Liberal

Mr. Lang (Saskatoon-Humboldi):

Members opposite come into the house and say they are not attacking the Wheat Board. The Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce is in this house tonight answering the charges they lay against the Wheat Board. The Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce is in constant contact with the Wheat Board about all matters. I say to hon. members opposite, and particularly the hon. member for Crowfoot (Mr. Horner) and the hon. member for Vegreville (Mr. Mazankowski), that their remarks about the service the Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce is giving to the Canadian farmer are not only discourteous but are downright reprehensible.

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PC

John (Jack) McIntosh

Progressive Conservative

Mr. McIntosh:

You haven't heard anything yet.

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LIB

Otto Emil Lang (Minister Without Portfolio)

Liberal

Mr. Lang (Saskatoon-Humboldt):

I have the honour of working closely with this minister and am able to judge far better than they

the quality of his service and the manner of that service to the western farmer. Only last night the Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce again met with the Wheat Board. These questions are always in his mind.

Hon. members opposite have today pointed to some of the serious difficulties with which we are faced. This is the problem. There are real, serious difficulties involved in an operation as large as this and there will be times when hindsight would be a very valuable asset. I gather that the hon. member for Crowfoot has it. He suggests we might have left the wheat on the prairies because the 40 degree below weather in Edmonton is very valuable for storing wheat. There is no way in which one can foresee these things. The Wheat Board must make the best decision it can on the facts available to it when it has to make a decision. This is what the Wheat Board does.

There are serious questions which must be examined. Is the local elevator system adequate to meet the needs of today? Do we have enough terminal facilities? Can we afford more? Should we have enough facilities for peak loadings? Can we pay the price? Serious questions like these must be examined. I look forward to the examination of these questions in a thorough fashion by the National Grains Council which is being set up to look into these very matters. In this council the best minds involved in the operation of the whole grain industry will be brought to bear.

I point out to hon. members opposite that while they have been panicking, some things have been done of great merit and help to the prairie farmers. The doubling of the cash advance has been a godsend at this time. This new scheme, which comes very close to buying the wheat on the farm itself, is of tremendous help to the prairie farmer. This year, to date, $122 million has been taken out in cash advances.

Topic:   MOTION TO ADJOURN UNDER S.O. 26 GRAIN ALLEGED PARALYSIS OF WHEAT MOVEMENT THROUGH VANCOUVER-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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?

An hon. Member:

That demonstrates how broke the farmers are.

Topic:   MOTION TO ADJOURN UNDER S.O. 26 GRAIN ALLEGED PARALYSIS OF WHEAT MOVEMENT THROUGH VANCOUVER-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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LIB

Daniel Aiken Lang

Liberal

Mr. Lang (Saskatoon-Humboldi):

This is almost twice as much as the maximum amount ever taken out in a whole year. This program is of significant help to the western farmer.

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PC

John (Jack) Henry Horner

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Horner:

We realize that the policy is good. After all, we brought it in.

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LIB

Otto Emil Lang (Minister Without Portfolio)

Liberal

Mr. Lang (Saskatoon-Humboldt):

Members opposite panic from issue to issue. By ignor-

January 22, 1969

ing the facts they do a disservice to the Canadian farmer. By the news they spread abroad they do a disservice to the Canadian farmer. By the completely unwarranted attack upon the functions of the Wheat Board they do a tremendous disservice to the cause of prairie agriculture. Above all, they do a disservice by diverting attention to false arguments when they should be paying attention to the solid, sound, economic arguments which can in fact be made on behalf of prairie agriculture.

[DOT] (11:50 p.m.)

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PC

Deane Roscoe Gundlock

Progressive Conservative

Mr. D. R. Gundlock (Lethbridge):

Mr. Speaker, the last thing I heard the Minister without Portfolio (Mr. Lang) say, and he was bragging about it, was that loans to farmers had been doubled. I would like to ask the minister why they were doubled. Was there not a need for that?

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IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

If the hon. member wishes to relinquish the floor his speech will be over and I will call another member.

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PC

Deane Roscoe Gundlock

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Gundlock:

Mr. Speaker, I would like to ask the minister-

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IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. The minister has finished his speech. The hon. member for Lethbridge has the floor and he should make his speech.

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PC

Deane Roscoe Gundlock

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Gundlock:

This may be so, Mr. Speaker, but through you I would like to ask the minister why the loans were doubled. He is bragging about it and he is saying there is no need for it but I must point out there must be a need because they were doubled.

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IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. I am sure the hon. member realizes that we are not in committee now. As I suggested a moment ago, the minister completed his speech and resumed his seat. The Chair recognized the hon. member who has the floor now and who, I am sure, will want to continue his speech.

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LIB

Daniel Aiken Lang

Liberal

Mr. Lang (Saskaioon-Humboldl):

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I would like to correct the last statement of the hon. member.

Topic:   MOTION TO ADJOURN UNDER S.O. 26 GRAIN ALLEGED PARALYSIS OF WHEAT MOVEMENT THROUGH VANCOUVER-MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT UNDER STANDING ORDER 26
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IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. The minister cannot rise on a point of order to correct a statement. That is not a point of order.

Mr. Lang (Saskatoon-Humboldi) May I say

the hon. member was misquoting me, Mr. Speaker?

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IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order, please. It is not a point of order to correct an alleged misquotation.

Grain

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PC

Deane Roscoe Gundlock

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Gundlock:

Mr. Speaker, I sat here and listened to the minister. His seatmate is leaving. We have listened to facts and figures all evening, mostly about the weather. The government says this is the greatest day in history for the movement of grain. However, if I may, Mr. Speaker, I wish to tell the minister that last year was the worst year in history for the movement of grain. This almost reminds me of a joke. We hear a lot about movement of grain but not about deliveries. How about the deliveries? That is what we are talking about. We have heard from many ministers tonight and especially from one very vocal minister who can really put on a show, namely, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce (Mr. Pepin). I hope we will hear from the Minister of Agricutlure (Mr. Olson). However, we have heard mostly about the movement of grain while we are really talking about deliveries.

If the rules will permit, Mr. Speaker, I might tell a story about that. I recall that before we had simultaneous interpretation in the house all that could be understood was that it is very easy to conceive but very hard to deliver. So far as I am concerned as a western farmer, this is the position of the government at present. They can do a lot of talking but it is very hard for them to deliver. The main trouble is that they talk so much about it and do so little. We have listened for about two hours to stories about the weather. I ask you, Mr. Speaker; is there anything new about Canadian weather this year? Granted, it may be a little cold in Calgary, but is there anything really new about it? All the minister was doing was making excuses. The farmers do not want to listen to apologies and excuses. They want some answers, and perhaps the best answer would be for the government to keep its hands off the Wheat Board.

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January 22, 1969