April 27, 1993

LIB

Sheila Finestone

Liberal

Mrs. Sheila Finestone (Mount Royal):

Mr. Speaker, older citizens of my community have deposited, according to the normal procedures of the House through Standing Order 36, the following resolution. They consider universal medical care a fundamental element of the Canadian identity. They indicate that recent budgetary costs have had a serious impact on their health and have undermined the principles of universality.

These petitioners, these older citizens who have paid and wish to continue to pay and to benefit, have asked the government to take all the necessary measures so that within the Constitution of Canada there will be this obligation by governments to assure to all citizens that hospital and health care remain a universal principle by the state.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   HEALTH CARE
Permalink
NDP

Daniel James Macdonnell Heap

New Democratic Party

Mr. Dan Heap (TVinity-Spadina):

Mr. Speaker, it is my duty and pleasure, pursuant to Standing Order 36, to present a petition from over 100 residents of Toronto, York, Welland, Bond Head, Port Robinson, Kleinburg, Newmarket, Scarborough, Uxbridge, Sunderland, Willow Beach and Holland Landing.

These residents of Canada undersigned are concerned with the negotiations for a North American free trade agreement which they say will result and has already begun to result in even greater trade concessions being demanded of Canada, threatening even more good Canadian jobs.

Routine Proceedings

It will also place restrictions on the ability of Canada's federal, provincial and territorial governments to assist industry to conserve Canadian natural resources for Canadians and to advance the social programs we need. The free trade agreement cannot be remedied through negotiation. The petitioners point out that there will be an election before Januaiy 1, 1994 when the free trade agreement is scheduled to come into force. Therefore they call on this House to reject the proposed North American free trade agreement and to recommend to the government that it use the termination clause to end the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   NORTH AMERICAN FREE TRADE AGREEMENT
Permalink
LIB

Dennis Joseph Mills

Liberal

Mr. Dennis Mills (Broadview-Greenwood):

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36 I have the privilege of presenting these petitions signed by not only my constituents but by people from all across the Toronto region.

The petitioners humbly pray and call upon Parliament to accept legislation designed to eliminate violence against women and children. They want to encourage and support women to report incidents of assault or abuse and provide relief and support to women as mothers to protect their children.

They want to emphasize the need for abuser rehabilitation and they want to concentrate special effort on the training of police, lawyers, court workers and judges to become knowledgeable about women and child abuse and to focus public attention on this very important and long ignored problem.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   VIOLENCE
Permalink
LIB

Ron J. Duhamel

Liberal

Mr. Ronald J. Duhamel (St. Boniface):

Mr. Speaker, the students from the University of Saskatchewan who reflect the views of students from across Canada have asked me to present this petition which I do with a great deal of pleasure.

The petitioners condemn the goods and services tax on books and reading materials. In their opinion, the goods and services tax on books and learning materials has harmed publishers, bookstores, libraries, students and writers.

They ask the government to review its policy and rescind it.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   GOODS AND SERVICES TAX
Permalink
LIB

Ron J. Duhamel

Liberal

Mr. Ronald J. Duhamel (St. Boniface):

Mr. Speaker, I have another petition.

This is really the government's last chance because there will be a vote on this item today to delay the proposed merger of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council with the Canada Council.

These petitioners point out that Canada's most challenging problems are in the social sciences area. There are questions such as unemployment, poverty, et cetera. Without a vital Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council we could and will be at a disadvantage. Again, they ask the government to defer its decision.

I think this is a very reasonable request.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   SOCIAL SCIENCES
Permalink
LIB

Maurice Brydon Foster

Liberal

Mr. Maurice Foster (Algoma):

Mr. Speaker, I have the honour to present a petition signed by some 175 constituents of mine from Manitoulin Island. They are from such places like Gore Bay, Ice Lake, Mindemoya, Little Current, Spring Bay and Providence Bay.

These petitioners are calling on the government to maintain the manned weather station at the Gore Bay-Manitoulin airport. They point out that this has implications for safety at the airport. The staff at the weather station not only operate the weather station but they are also involved in areas of the operation of the airport itself relating to security, fuel sales, radio operation, scheduling of air flights, air ambulance, search and rescue, runway and beacon lighting.

We are not only dealing with five permanent jobs but also the operation of the airport and the long-term viability of that community as regards transportation and tourism.

These constituents of mine call on the government to retain and maintain the staffed weather station at the Gore Bay-Manitoulin airport.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   GORE BAY-MANITOULIN AIRPORT
Permalink
NDP

Nelson Andrew Riis (N.D.P. House Leader)

New Democratic Party

Mr. Nelson A. Riis (Kamloops):

Mr. Speaker, it is my honour to present a petition on behalf of a number of residents of Kamloops, British Columbia who point out their disappointment that the government used a form of

April 27, 1993

The Budget

closure to limit the debate on the North America free trade agreement to less than five hours at the second reading stage. That is where we discuss the legislation in principle.

They point out that water is not an area of exclusion within the North American free trade agreement. They point out that raw logs are exempt, that unprocessed fish on the east coast of Canada are specifically made exempt but water is not.

The petitioners point out that at the moment there is a project where the backers intend to divert part of the North Thompson River and eventually sell that water in southern California. They are very concerned in terms of the ecological impact of this type of water diversion plan. They are asking that the Canadian government make water an exclusion from the free trade agreement so that our Canadian rivers and lakes will be saved for future generations here in Canada.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   PETITIONS
Sub-subtopic:   NORTH AMERICAN FREE TRADE AGREEMENT
Permalink

QUESTIONS ON THE ORDER PAPER

PC

Charles A. Langlois (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence; Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Charles A. Langlois (Parliamentary Secretary to Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and to Minister of National Defence):

Mr. Speaker, I ask that all questions be allowed to stand.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS ON THE ORDER PAPER
Permalink
PC

Charles Deblois (Assistant Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Progressive Conservative

The Acting Speaker (Mr. DeBlois):

Is that agreed?

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS ON THE ORDER PAPER
Permalink
?

Some hon. members:

Agreed.

Topic:   IMMIGRATION ACT
Subtopic:   QUESTIONS ON THE ORDER PAPER
Permalink

GOVERNMENT ORDERS

THE BUDGET


The House resumed from Monday, April 26, consideration of the motion of Mr. Mazankowski that this House approves in general the budgetary policy of the government.


LIB

Herbert Eser (Herb) Gray

Liberal

Hon. Herb Gray (Windsor West):

Mr. Speaker, when I moved the adjournment of the budget debate yesterday I described this budget as a white flag being raised by all the members of a tired Conservative government in

surrender to a jobless recovery, a jobless economy. Perhaps I should have called the budget this government's shroud because this is surely the last will and testament of a dying government.

In this budget there is nothing for the unemployed, nothing for our young people entering the labour force hoping for a future. In fact the Minister of Finance is projecting unemployment at or near to 11 per cent well into 1994, a message of despair for the 1.5 unemployed Canadians and their families.

On page 21 of the budget papers themselves the Minister of Finance admits that unemployment will be high right through 1998, five years from now. Here is what the budget papers say:

The medium-term projection underlying the fiscal plan is based on

the assumption that some excess capacity in labour and product

markets will remain through 1998.

Underneath this convoluted Department of Finance language the meaning is clear. There still will not be enough jobs five years from now for Canadians if this Conservative government stays in office, but I am sure this is not something Canadians will allow to happen.

Before he brought down his budget the Minister of Finance in effect admitted that putting Canadians back to work would not be his primary focus. He claimed that the deficit was his number one economic enemy.

Canadians are going to think that sounds rather strange coming from this Conservative government. Is this not the same government that said when it was first elected in 1984 that the deficit would be its priority? Is this not the same Conservative government that for the last nine years brought in deficit after deficit all in the $30 billion area? Is this not the same government that over these same nine years piled up more public debt than all previous governments since Confederation? I think so, Mr. Speaker, because there was an accumulated debt of $168 billion approximately by 1984, accumulated in the 117 years since Confederation. However, in only nine years of Conservative government, of Conservative fiscal mismanagement, that debt ballooned to $458 billion. Yet the Conservatives are the people who say they know how to run this country's affairs.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
?

An hon. member:

What a laugh.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
LIB

Herbert Eser (Herb) Gray

Liberal

Mr. Gray (Windsor West):

What a laugh, someone said. Canadians have tragically learned that is not the case.

April 27, 1993

The Budget

Even after bragging last week about how his budget was going to fight the deficit, the minister when presenting his budget papers was still forecasting in them that the deficit would be $35.5 billion this year.

Even after five more years under his so-called deficit reduction plan the minister says there would still be a deficit left of $8 billion. Over that same period he plans, the Conservatives plan, to add over $100 billion more to the public debt bringing it to $563.2 billion by 1998.

Under this Conservative government more and more of Canada's debt is held by foreigners leaving us increasingly vulnerable to outside pressures. The government knows this. On page 26 of the budget the Minister of Finance admits that Canada's foreign indebtedness has not been as high since 1961. As I said last night, that was during the last period of long-term Conservative government when the Prime Minister was the Right Hon. John Diefenbaker.

When I pointed that out yesterday our present Conservative Prime Minister doubted this could be so, but here it is in black and white, right here in the Conservative budget and budget papers. This Conservative government and the present Prime Minister have beaten the record of the last Conservative government to the detriment of the Canadian people.

In fact the deficit for 1992-93 is $8 billion higher than this Minister of Finance said it would be in his February 1992 budget and $1.1 billion higher than he said it would be only last December in his economic statement. These guys really know how to forecast. Is that sound fiscal management? I do not think so and Canadians will not think so either.

I am sure that no Conservative members will be as disappointed with this Conservative deficit non-plan than the Minister of National Defence who said she could eliminate the deficit entirely in five years and the Minister of the Environment who then upped the ante saying that he could do it in only four years.

How are these ministers going to reconcile their leadership campaign promises with the Minister of Finance's budget? Will they vote against it because it does not meet these leadership promises? Or will they

vote for it and acknowledge when it comes to fiscal realism they do not know what they are talking about? After all that is what the Minister of Finance in effect said himself about these two colleagues when he forecast yesterday a budget deficit of $8 billion, not zero but $8 billion five years from now.

If this budget is not believable when it comes to deficit control, exactly what does it do? Well it certainly does not set priorities. The Minister of Finance who wants to be known as "Maz the Knife" has said he is four square behind spending $5.8 billion on unneeded high-tech military helicopters which were planned for during a cold war that fortunately ended years ago.

His plan and the Conservative government's commitment is to spend this $5.8 billion at a time when in this budget the government is cutting funds for social housing, for low-income housing, for regional development and is even taking away the January GST rebate cheques from lower income Canadians.

Why is it that after all the talk, the hype, the sales pitches, the Conservatives have failed by their own admission to meet their own objective and bring the deficit under control? It is because they just do not get it. They fail to recognize that meaningful deficit reduction can only be expected when there is strong economic growth and strong increasing employment.

The Minister of Finance and the Conservatives admitted in the budget that government revenues have been weak and would continue to be weak for years under their projections. Why is this? It is because of a continuing weak economy and slow economic growth. The Tories have failed to realize that the deficit, employment, economic growth, inflation and taxation are all interrelated. What is required is a set of co-ordinated and balanced economic policies.

This is exactly what the Conservatives have not given Canadians over the past nine years. There is no doubt the deficit is a problem that must be dealt with. However, any fiscally responsible economic strategy must have two tracks. This is the Liberal approach, the Liberal plan.

The first track involves expenditure control through streamlining government and eliminating duplication while delivering the services that Canadians need. This

April 27, 1993

must take place, we believe, in consultation and not in conflict with the provinces. In addition, the federal government must hold off on new programs that do not contribute to economic growth and job creation.

On the second track at the same time governments must foster economic growth and job creation. This means investing in people, research and development and infrastructure. When people are working it means higher government revenues without their having to pay higher taxes. At the same time governments do not have to spend on unemployment insurance and welfare.

Studies have confirmed that the one million Canadians who are unemployed cost the federal government more than $20 billion, likely $25 billion each and every year they remain out of work. If one million Canadians could be put back to work, it would free up $25 billion which could be directed to other productive purposes. This means these people would be put back to work. That is something for which the Conservatives have no plan. It is something for which the Conservatives have no commitment.

People often ask what government spending we Liberals would like to cut. By way of example, I have already mentioned the $5.8 billion military helicopter program. That is one area. I would also like to see a substantial cut in the $19 billion the government spends on unemployment insurance, not by cutting benefits but by putting people back to work.

Someone once said that to govern is to choose, but this Conservative government has a mania for making bad choices. For example, the Conservatives have no plan for jobs and growth. However, they do have a detailed plan for a multimillion dollar unnecessary farewell trip to Europe by the current Prime Minister. The Conservatives announced no plan for growth and jobs, but the Prime Minister's office has just announced all the details, the full agenda for the multimillion dollar farewell trip by the Prime Minister.

The egomania of the Prime Minister is more important than jobs for Canadians. Surely that cannot be right. Canadians can and will make sure that the next election will also be the farewell trip for the new Conservative leader and the Conservative government as well. We are going to have two farewell trips, one by the present Prime Minister and during the next election the farewell trip for his successor as well.

The Budget

In my own city of Windsor and in cities just like it across this country, people have been devastated by Conservative policies that have brought recession and unemployment. Policies like the GST and the trade deals have closed factories and produced hundreds of thousands of bankruptcies.

People in my community feel they have done more than their share in bearing the burden of these Conservative policies. I think people in my community and communities like it right across this country would be prepared to do their share as part of a plan to help get this country moving. However they see no such plan for recovery and growth in this budget or in anything the Minister of Finance or the Prime Minister, or those hoping to succeed him, have had to say so far or are likely to say.

In the budget documents the government admits that even in 1998, five years from now, if there is still a Conservative government it expects to be spending $18 billion a year on unemployment insurance. That is only about $1 billion less than it is spending today. That is hardly a vote of confidence by this Conservative government in its own capacity for economic management.

As the Leader of the Opposition told Toronto's Empire Club on February 11 of this year, fostering economic growth does not mean new federal spending to finance our future. It does mean changing priorities and investing in that future. Without the Liberal two-track approach to deficit reduction and economic growth, any efforts to balance expenditures and revenues will prove futile at best and counterproductive at worst. Meanwhile the stagnant economy will continue. It will continue unless this two-track approach becomes the foundation of a new economic plan for Canada.

The fact is that neither this budget nor any of the Conservative leadership candidates have provided a realistic vision, a plan to achieve the twin objectives of fiscal responsibility and strong economic growth.

Unlike the Conservative Party and the New Democratic Party, the Liberal Party developed an economic policy which will really prepare the Canadian economy for the 21st century.

April 27, 1993

i- *

*

Translation]

The Budget

For Liberals the ultimate objective of economic policy is to build a value-added economy that will create permanent jobs for Canadians and protect and enhance our social fabric. This means providing Canadians with more jobs with a future in industries with a future.

To maintain high-paying jobs in the global economy Canada will need a work force second to none in skills and flexibility. In co-operation with the provinces, business and labour a new Liberal government would establish a national apprenticeship program and a Canada youth service, for example.

A new Liberal government would see technological innovation as a real opportunity for Canadians. It would pursue a research and development strategy that would enhance Canada's ability to finance, market, administer and diffuse our advanced technology.

A new Liberal government would revitalize the small business sector which is crucial to Canada's long-term economic health. It is this sector that will likely generate the most jobs for Canadians.

A new Liberal government would promote and pursue a global trade strategy and aggressively exploit the potential for export sales to growth areas such as the Pacific rim and Latin America.

A new Liberal government is committed to the concept of a true Canadian economic union, one that would eliminate provincial barriers to the movement of goods, services, capital and labour and create billions of dollars of additional economic activity for Canadians.

Liberals believe that with a national government that stands up for them Canadians can compete with the best in the world, creating new economic growth and opportunity here at home.

Yes, I would have to say that a new Liberal government alone cannot solve all of our economic problems. There is no single magical solution. However I believe that a new Liberal government will make an important difference, a real difference for the better for all Canadians.

In order to make this economic change, we will have to establish new partnerships with all stakeholders in this country-the private sector, the unions, the provinces, the municipalities, the voluntary agencies-and we will have to stop, once and for all, to pit these groups against one another, as the Tories have been doing for nine years.

In a recent speech the distinguished economist, Judith Maxwell, said:

A society that stops building for tomorrow gets stale and

deteriorates.

That is what has happened to Canada under the last nine years of Conservative rule. Conservatives have stopped investing in order to build for tomorrow. They have stopped investing in people, education, research and development. They have stopped investing in our country's infrastructure. They have stopped investing in the building blocks of a prosperous and competitive economy. As a consequence of the Conservatives not investing in our future, the Canadian economy continues to falter and our high standard of living, perhaps a lot less high since the Conservatives got in, is at risk. The future of our children is at risk.

This Conservative government has failed to respond to the challenges of a new world economy. It has failed to put people back to work. It has failed to offer a real future for our young people. Conservatives simply do not get it. They simply do not realize what has to be done. They have forgotten, or they do not want to agree, as a very wise person said to me this morning, that for Canadians there is a society to be maintained, cultures to be encouraged and a country to be built. Instead of a crusade for a better and more prosperous Canada, the Conservatives have simply presented a budget that is an admission of defeat, a shroud for a dying government.

This is not a budget to respond to the economic and social needs of Canadians. Instead, unfortunately, it is a budget designed to respond to the political needs of the Tory leadership candidates. There is no plan in this budget to get the economy moving quickly forward again

April 27, 1993

and to create more jobs for the 1.5 million unemployed and the young people entering the labour force who are seeking a future and who deserve a future.

However the fact is that the needs of Canada for economic growth and jobs have to come ahead of the ambitions of the Conservative leadership candidates and their misguided expectation that somehow they will be able to perpetuate their years in office. These needs of Canada for economic growth and jobs must come first. However that will happen only once we have an election in which this tired Conservative government, even with a new leader, will be replaced by a new Liberal government, a Liberal government with a strong economic action plan and with the mandate to implement it.

I conclude by moving:

That the motion be amended by deleting all the words after the

word "That" and by substituting-

What amounts to a strong motion of non-confidence in this government.

-by substituting the following therefor:

this House condemns the government for presenting a shopworn copy of last year's budget that

- fails to present a realistic and comprehensive program to create jobs and economic recovery to permit the millions of Canadians whose lives have been crushed by Tory policies to regain their hope and their livelihood,

- fails to offer a credible and fair plan to control and reduce public debt and

- fails to provide Canadians with a true and an accurate account of the eight and one-half years of Conservative government mismanagement".

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
PC

Charles Deblois (Assistant Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Progressive Conservative

The Acting Speaker (Mr. DeBlois):

The Chair rules the amendment moved by the hon. member for Windsor West to be in order.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
NDP

Audrey Marlene McLaughlin

New Democratic Party

Hon. Audrey McLaughlin (Yukon):

Mr. Speaker, yesterday's budget is clearly the budget of a tired government. In fact it is the budget of a bankrupt government that is leaving a country bankrupt.

It is incredible that we have a government that is leaving very shortly, and hopefully as quickly as possible when we have the next election, and is leaving this country in a situation in which there is the highest

The Budget

number of unemployed Canadians we have ever had, the highest debt and the highest number of bankruptcies. Nothing in this budget addressed any of those issues. Nothing in this budget gave hope to Canadians. A government without vision leaves a country without hope, and that is the legacy of almost nine years of Tory leadership.

The crisis we have in this country now is a fiscal crisis. There are those who say that the only way we can deal with the fiscal crisis is to create a human crisis. That is what this government has done. The human deficit of unemployment is incredible in this country. While the official statistics rest at 11 per cent, there are many studies that indicate one in four Canadians are either unemployed or underemployed and are seeking employment in this country, or better employment.

It is unbelievable that this government could stand up yesterday and present a budget to this House that was based on continuing unemployment of 11 per cent this year and further double digit unemployment in the next year. It seems that level of unemployment is acceptable to this government. One million children living in poverty is acceptable to this government, if we look at this budget. Hundreds of thousands of people using food banks is acceptable to this government.

Three years ago this House stood together and said that we would eradicate poverty by the year 2000 and this government chose to bring in its last budget which did not even acknowledge the level of poverty it has created in this country. It is a shame.

The government did have choices. Did it choose to do anything about jobs? No it did not. It chose to ignore the example of many of our trading partners, the United States, Japan and Europe, which have very recently introduced jobs plans, of investing in growth and developing a dynamic and modem economy to take us into the 21st century.

Why did this government choose to ignore the fact that our economy is simply not working? To the contrary, it continued with more of the same and said that the cure for the devastation it has created is more devastation. We on this side of the House, the New Democratic Party, say Canadians will not accept that, Canadians will not let the Tories get away with that.

There is one major reason that the Canadian economy is not working and it is that Canadians are not working.

April 27, 1993

The Budget

A recovery without jobs is no recovery at all. A future without jobs is a future without hope. That is unacceptable. It is a betrayal of the people this government is here to serve.

Is the government attacking the deficit? No. With a deficit of $35 billion this year and a deficit of almost $33 billion next year, this exercise is a failure. And why did the government fail? Because it has refused to stop wasting money and because it will not admit that the best way to reduce the deficit is to attack unemployment. The government could have cancelled the helicopter purchase, a deal that will cost the government nearly $6 billion for helicopters to be used to fight an enemy who, since the end of the cold war, no longer exists.

No, it chose to reduce unemployment insurance benefits, to reduce federal regional development grants and transportation subsidies for farmers. It preferred to reduce subsidies for institutions like the CBC, those institutions that unite and define us as a country.

The government had the opportunity to close tax loopholes to the powerful and wealthy and end the private family trust exemption that cost up to $600 million each year. It had the opportunity to cancel the business entertainment deduction that costs up to $1 billion each year.

It chose instead to make life more difficult for low income Canadians by reducing the number of times the GST rebate is received to twice a year from four times a year. I know that people who have jobs and those on the government side who are living quite comfortably may not understand the real life that many low income Canadians live. They may not understand that change will really cause a severe hardship to many families.

In addition, the government chose to cut development assistance to the world's poorest citizens and made drastic cuts to advocacy groups that generally speaking, on very limited budgets, give a voice to those who are less powerful in our society.

Let us look at what the government did in this budget. It made sure that any cuts made were to those with the

least power and the least voice. Those who were exempted from any sacrifice were those with the most: the rich, the powerful and those with private family trusts. Those revenues would have offset any savings by far.

This is a political budget and not a financial budget. The government made the political choice to really get the unemployed and the victims who feel powerless but it is not going to touch its friends who fund its party and will fund the next election. No, no, it is going to leave them alone.

Canadians know and want a government that stands on the side of all Canadians and not just one segment of Canadians. Mr. Speaker, as the leader of the New Democratic Party I say to you there is only one party that stands on the side of all Canadians and that is the New Democrats.

The reality is that the poorest fifth of Canadians own one-third of one per cent of the wealth in this country. The richest fifth of Canadians own 69 per cent of the wealth of this country. Have those in the richest one-fifth been asked to contribute, to sacrifice? No, they have not. Have they been asked to pay their fair share? Not at all.

Why not? As I said earlier it is because this government serves its friends. That is probably one of the saddest things for Canadians about this budget. Canadians did not understand it before but it is clear this government acts as a voice for private greed and not as a voice for public interest and the common good.

It is long past the time we had a government that could recapture that spirit of the public interest and common good in this country so all Canadians can benefit from the riches of our country.

Recently-I was flying back from my riding-I was sitting in the airport beside a couple of people who were discussing what they had been doing. They said they had taken their families to Europe skiing and were intending to travel a bit in Europe. They were looking forward to what they were going to do in the summer. At the end of that conversation they said they were very concerned that governments are not really cutting back social spending and health care.

April 27, 1993

The day before that I was sitting in a union hall in Faro, Yukon, in my riding where hundreds of workers are laid off and others are in danger of losing their positions. We sat and talked about the devastation to their families; the fact that labour laws did not protect them; the fact that these workers were last call on anything that might happen in terms of receiving their benefits and what was owed to them. They could not understand why a government would not protect the working people of this country.

The contrast between those two incidents is graphic. Once again I say that those who have the most are asked to pay the least. The working people who compose the engine that drives this country are asked to make the most sacrifices and are last in line when this government makes its policy and when it draws up a budget.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink
?

An hon. member:

Shame, shame.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
Sub-subtopic:   FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE
Permalink

April 27, 1993