March 16, 1939 (18th Parliament, 4th Session)


Gerald Grattan McGeer


Mr. G. G. McGEER (Vancouver-Burrard):

I supported in the committee the resolution to ask the house for leave to go to Toronto to inspect the plant and the present operations of the John Inglis Company, as they apply not only to the production of Bren guns but also to the commercial activities of the plant.
I did so in order that we might have a firsthand view of the possibilities of coordinating war-time preparation activities with peacetime commercial activities, not only to secure efficient means for the production of arms in time of need but also to coordinate that kind of work and the reestablishment of peace-time industrial enterprise. It is important to consider this particular contract from the point of view of the policy of governmental cooperation with private enterprise to aid as far as possible the preparation for the production of necessary arms for defence and, as well, the reestablishment of industrial activity in Canada.
Any better reasons for the inspection of this plant than have been advanced by hon.
members who have spoken against the proposal of the committee, would 'be very difficult to find. I am amazed that those who have been responsible for the enormous amount of time that has been taken in investigating this minor item in British empire defence should now hesitate to go and examine, or allow a committee of parliament to go and examine, the thing that they have condemned as unworthy of confidence.

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