December 16, 1971

IND

Lucien Lamoureux (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Independent

Mr. Speaker:

Order. The hon. member for Temiscamingue will admit that he is not making things easier right now. I invite the hon. members for Laurier and Temiscamingue to come back to the bill before the House.

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Subtopic:   INCOME TAX ACT
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SC

David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

Mr. Speaker, the Prime Minister spoke of a million Canadians who will pay no income tax. He did not say those million Canadians represent people who earn the least amongst single people. In fact, they are single people who earn less than $1,500 a year, and married people who earn less than $2,850.

The Prime Minister should have told us how much those people will save by no longer paying income tax. They

Income Tax Act

scarcely paid any previously. Now, between almost nothing and nothing at all, there might be a difference of about $7 or $8 a year or 10 to 15 cents a week.

However, the Prime Minister did not say so. He told us a million-it sounds good-Canadians will not be paying income tax and that 1,300,000 will pay less. How will the taxpayers pay less income tax? Even if it were only $100 a year, it comes to $2 a week. But not a word about it! No. It is mentioned in a general way that 1,300,000 Canadian taxpayers will pay less income tax. They are bamboozling the people!

And the Prime Minister tried this afternoon to suggest that the members of the opposition were talking about anything except Bill C-259. He said that the Progressive Conservative had talked about India, potato growing in New Brunswick, wheat exports to China, trade with India, and that we forgot to speak to Bill C-259.

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An hon. Member:

That is true!

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David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

Mr. Speaker, that is correct, but I heard the speeches of certain Liberals which were not that much more substantial than those made by Conservative members. What is true, as I said it at the beginning of my remarks, is that if the Progressive Conservatives were in the place of the Liberals, we would be considering exactly the same legislation, because the economists of this government are the same as those of the government of ten years ago, who prepared the "gimmick". That is what we are dealing with now. So, let us not be timid. Others do not hesitate to say it.

Tuesday, during the debate on the motion to apply Standing Order 75c, I heard the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Laing) say to the Leader of the official Opposition (Mr. Stanfield), and I quote:

I suggest that the intelligence of the Leader of the Opposition is exceeded by his sensitiveness to public opinion. No government has any money of its own.

That is an admission on the part of a minister of a sovereign government.

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LIB

Albert Béchard (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. Albert Bechard (Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Justice):

Why not?

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David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

Yes, I said "Why not?" And why shouldn't I? Why can't the government, through Parliament, use the services of the Bank of Canada?

I will remind the House, Mr. Speaker-and I see the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Macdonald) nodding his approval-that the former Liberal leader, whom the Minister of Public Works, himself a former Liberal leader of British Columbia, followed like a little dog, said in 1935, when I was a liberal:

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Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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SC

David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

And the Minister of Public Works said yesterday-

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LIB

Albert Béchard (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. Bechard:

Those were the good old days.

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SC

David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

One thing is true perhaps: I have remained a true Liberal while the Liberals have become socialists.

December 16, 1971

Income Tax Act

Mr. Speaker, I quote what the Right Honourable William Lyon Mackenzie King said in August 1935, and this, for the information of the hon. member for Laurier (Mr. Leblanc) since he finds Social Credit so funny.

Once a nation parts with the control of its currency and credit, it matters not who makes the nation's laws. Usury, once in control will wreck any nation.

Let us see if the situation is not exactly the same as the one we find ourselves in with this Bill C-259.

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An hon. Member:

What date?

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David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

In August 1935.

Until the control of the issue of currency and credit is restored to government, and recognized as its most conspicuous and sacred responsibility, all talk of the sovereignty of parliament and democracy is idle and futile.

A former Prime Minister of Canada said that.

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An hon. Member:

He is dead.

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David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

He is dead. My hon. friend will die one day, Mr. Speaker.

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An hon. Member:

Everyone has to die.

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David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

But one thing is true: that Prime Minister was right. And today, we believe that it is high time to proceed with a reform in depth, not a fictitious one, like this one, which is meant to take away from those who have and to give to those who have not. This is the objective of Bill C-259. The rich will benefit from exemptions, the poor will gain very little and the middle man will pay everything.

Mr. Speaker, that is exactly what we are told by accountants and businessmen. Some accountants in western Canada say frankly: "It's pure confiscation of private property." For the hon. member's information, those are not Creditiste, but liberal or conservative accountants, and they all say the same thing.

Mr. Speaker, some time ago I suggested to the House the establishment of a social security program using the services of our financial institutions, particularly the Bank of Canada. Some people said it would be ridiculous to change the whole social security system which exists in Canada at present. No figures were given at the time. But we now have figures to show; we did the necessary research to get the official figures.

The federal government spends $7,722,661,607 every year on social security in Canada. Crown corporations spend $80,025,837 on social security. The total expenses of all Canadian provinces amount to $6,814,500,000, and those of municipalities, to $286 million-for a grand total of $14,903,249,444. That is what we pay at present in Canada for social security.

My colleagues and I urged that a single social security plan be set up for all Canada instead of 25 different schemes. We must set up a plan applying to every Canadi-

an earning less than $15,000 a year because we consider that those earning that much a year have security! We have proposed giving, from age 18, $1,500 to all single people and $2,500 to married couples and an extra $250 for each child up to the sixth and up to a maximum of $4,000.

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An hon. Member:

For hon. members too?

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David Réal Caouette

Social Credit

Mr. Caouette:

Not for hon. members, because their annual income exceeds $15,000.

Then, Mr. Speaker, we would cover students, people who are handicapped or disabled, who would, if they are alone, receive $1,500 a year, which is $125 a month, instead of $80, $75 or $65 as is now the case.

When students 18 to 23 years of age would reach the end of their studies, they would receive $125 a month. A family of four would get $3,000 a year. Of course, if they could make some money besides their social security, they would be entitled to it, without being penalized or deprived of the guaranteed social security up to $4,000 a year.

Mr. Speaker, such a system would cost less than the present one, because we now make all kinds of expenditures without any reason and those who need it most do not get anything. The most needy are given as little as possible and we find thousands of examples throughout the country. This very day, welfare recipients from Montreal were in Parliament to complain about the lack of attention we give them. Try as we may tell them that this is the responsibility of the province of Quebec, Quebecers know that 50 per cent of welfare allowances come from Ottawa. Mr. Speaker, under that program, $200 a month would be paid everyone at age 60, and $150 a month to the spouse. That means that a married couple of 60 or more would receive $350 a month. I dare any member to tell me that $350 a month for old people or $125 a month for students, that is roughly $1,500 a year, is too much.

When I suggested the implementation of that program, I asked hon. members to study it seriously, not to win votes in the next elections but to achieve a just society in Canada. I urge, in all sincerity, the Liberals in power to adopt that social security program for the Canadian people as a whole. If they do so, I promise to vote for the present government in the next elections. It is as simple as that!

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LIB

Albert Béchard (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Liberal

Mr. Bechard:

Mr. Speaker, would the hon. member allow me a question?

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December 16, 1971