March 20, 1941 (19th Parliament, 2nd Session)

LIB

James Lorimer Ilsley (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Liberal

Mr. ILSLEY:

Oh, well, that is different from bringing about increased employment or production by that one thing alone. In the early stages of a war there will be, for a number of reasons, increased production and increased employment. For one thing, the psychological state of the people is altogether different, and I said in that speech that some monetary expansion might be necessary to assist in the increase that was taking place, so as perhaps to give an additional impetus.
That, however, is quite different from saying that that one factor, monetary expansion, would in a period like 1936, 1937, or 1938, have brought the same results. As a matter of fact, it might not have brought those results at all. It might simply have scared capital at that time, so that you would lose more in unemployment than you would gain by increasing employment.
I believe we are facing the old issue which has existed for a long time, namely, as to whether monetary measures alone can bring about prosperity or increased employment. I do not think they can. I do not believe the Cooperative Commonwealth Federation think so. I believe that is a theory held by a comparatively small group of people in the world, some of whom are monetary reformers. They hold the view that everything depends on the amount of money. That is not so.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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