June 7, 1922 (14th Parliament, 1st Session)


Ernest Lapointe (Minister of Marine and Fisheries)



Two principles. Well I join issue with him in that statement. The very nature and essence of the protective duty is that it must prevent the exchange as between the foreign product and the domestic product. The very nature and essence of a revenue duty is that it exists only when an exchange takes place. The less the foreign product enters the country, the more the protective duty achieves its end; the more the foreign product enters a country the more the revenue duty achieves its end. When a duty has for its purpose the blocking of the entrance of other countries' goods at the expense of the national revenue, so that only the national goods can be bought and their price artificially made higher, it becomes a purely protective duty. There is the difference between the two programmes, and my hon. friend is mistaken when he says there is no difference between him and ourselves. In the language of a great French orator-
Nous ne mfritons pas eet exees d'honneur ni cette indignite.
We do not deserve this excess of honour nor this indignity. I do not wish to speak at any greater length, except, perhaps, to express my regret that certain exaggerated statements have been made during the course of debate. Conditions are, indeed, serious in Canada, as they are in every other part of the world, although they are better here, perhaps, than in any other country. Our agriculture in common with all other industries, has felt the effect of this world-wide crisis, but I do not think it makes for public good or for the improvement of conditions to say that agriculture is dying in Canada. I cannot let such a statement go unchallenged. In the part of the country with which I am best acquainted agriculture is not dying. The farmers have had better days at times in the past, they may have better days in

The Budget-Mr. Lapointe
the future; but at no time has their courage, their energy, and their spirit of hope been higher. Nor is it an evidence of the soundness of rhat argument to say that there is scarcity of pupils in certain schools. Mr. Speaker, when there are few children in the homes there cannot be many in the schools, and whatever may be said against protection this objectional fiscal system is not responsible fcr that condition of things. There was another statement which was made with which I am not in sympathy. I will not name the hen. member who made the statement, because she is the one in the House with whom I would least like to quarrel. She said, speaking of the condition in the country:
Everyone has tried to acquire capital by doing his fellowman, and if he could not do him well enough without legislation, he cleverly sought legislation to help him do the other fellow more successfully.
Well, this is an unfortunate statement. A great Canada cannot be built nationally or economically by the sowing of germs of suspicion, hatred, discord, and class war. It can only be done by the union and cooperation of all citizens and classes, and by the creation of a spirit of solidarity. I sincerely believe that such notes of despondency and discouragement must be avoided, if we wish our country to pass through the crisis which prevails at the present time. For Canadian manhood, and for Canadian womanhood, as well as for Christianity, hope is a cardinal principle. Canada must smile once more. If there is one thing I would, with their permission, urge upon my hon. friends in this House, it is, "keep smiling." I will be more emphatic, and I will ask my right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition to start smiling. The electoral battle has been waged. The political atmosphere has been purified. Should we not ail co-operate for the progress and prosperity of Canada? Let my right hon. friend forget his disappointment. Let him forget that his fellow citizens, the electors of Canada, have shown what he seems to consider a lack of appreciation about himself. After all the country is still alive. Moses passes, Aaron passes, but the Ark remains. My right hon. friend is no longer Prime Minister of Canada, but the country still exists, and it needs co-operation. The country requires of the right hon. gentleman that he do nothing which (might hamper the efforts of those whose duty it is to lead her towards progress. I believe the Government has done a day's work. Of course,
it is not exempt from human weaknesses; it is not blessed with all of the human virtues.

Subtopic:   THE BUDGET
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