March 8, 1910 (11th Parliament, 2nd Session)


George Adam Clare

Conservative (1867-1942)


where our financial liability is going to end. We know that some fourteen years ago we expended on the militia of this country only one and a half million dollars a year, but to-day we are spending seven million dollars annually, so that for the up-keep of our militia and onr navy we will have an annual charge at the lowest calculation of $14,000,000, which, of course, is bound to increase as the years go on. I do not think there is any man on the government side of the House who will deny that in a very few years the expenditure of Canada for warfare will be at least $25,000,000 per annum. And, Mr. Speaker, what does $25,000,000 mean? It means that if we placed $25,000,000 per annum at the disposal of the Minister of Finance he could go to the money markets of England and borrow between $800,000,000 and $1,000,000,000, which would represent enough money to rebuild the whole British navy. That is what we are going to expend in this_ country. It would mean that the Minister of Finance could take that money and build the Georgian Bay canal, and deepen and extend the Welland canal, and buiid the Hudson Bay railway, and two or three transcontinental railways, and still have some money left in the treasury. I am opposed to this navy. As I have said, it will be no protection to Canada and no protection to the empire. And, Sir, the people of Canada, the voters of this country, the people who make and unmake governments, should be treated fairly in this matter and should be consulted. I appeal to the Prime Minister of this country that he should in all fairness withdraw this Bill and consult the people of Canada first, and if the people say: we want a navy

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