Mr. Maclnnis (Cape Breton-East Richmond):
This is only a further indication that hon. members on the government side have holes in their heads. The hon. member for Lethbridge (Mr. Gundlock) brought to the government's attention the fact that although there are very severe winter conditions in western Canada this year they are conditions which the railways have been used to and should have been able to overcome. On other occasions far more wheat was moved with far fewer box cars available. This is an indication of mismanagement in this field.
Someone has reminded me that the railways then used steam engines. I am happy to take up this point because my constituents were very sore a few years ago when the C.N.R. converted from coal to oil. This is an indication that the railways may well begin to think of coal again. I only hope that some day we shall see a reversion to steam, which would give the Minister of Industry, Trade and Commerce a suitable form of locomotion to surmount the difficulties caused by cold weather and carry the grain over the mountains.
I noticed a number of contradictions between statements made by various members on the government side. Not long after the Minister of Trade and Commerce had spoken the hon. member for Assiniboia (Mr. Douglas)
took part in the debate, expressing an entirely opposite point of view with regard to the appointment of a transportation commissioner. This is what he advocated, but the minister was afraid to go along with the idea.
I take exception to certain of the remarks made by the Minister of Agriculture because I consider them to be a reflection on the decision of the Chair to allow this debate on an important national issue. The Speaker agreed to allow this debate; yet the Minister of Agriculture said it was destroying markets. In my opinion this was a reflection on the Chair.