January 18, 1916 (12th Parliament, 6th Session)


William Pugsley



I would not like to say one word against Sir Charles Davidson, but from my long experience in the courts, where you have a lawyer on one side, and no lawyer on the other; where you do not have a lawyer to examine and cross-examine, the judge may unwittingly do the greatest possible injustice. Let me give an illustration. I watched with considerable interest the newspapers in Vancouver when I happened to be there for a day or two, to see whether it would occur to the gentleman who represented this Conservative Government; the Government with which Sir Richard McBride is, or was, so closely allied before a certain event took place; I watched to see whether any question would be asked of Mr. Logan as to how it was that he had carried on the negotiation for the purchase of the submarines for a fortnight and yet did not know what the price was to be, and why he simply whistled oyer the telephone when he found that the enormous price of $1,150,000 wias named. I was struck with amazement to find that when Mr. Paterson, the man who had been in Seattle when the submarines were tested, and when the experts of the Chilian Government refused to accept them-I was struck with amazement to find that he was not asked as to the nature of the test, or as to how the submarines acted under the test. I was amazed to find that Mr. Paterson had not been asked to produce his. books. I was amazed to find that no question had been asked of Sir Richard McBride, or of Mr. Paterson as to the grounds on which the former had represented that the Chilian Government were not able to pay for the submarines-a government which in respect to one article alone receives a revenue every year of $45,000,000; a government which has never defaulted during the past fifty years, at least in respect to any of its obligations; a government wihich stands high in financial circles, as a government which always carries out its obligations; I was amazed to find that the Commissioner had not asked him whether or not the Chilian Government had practically paid the whole amount of

the contract price before the inspection and rejection took place. I was amazed to find that not n word, had been asked upon all these vital questions, which a law student of six weeks' experience would have felt it necessary to ask.

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