Mr. C. A. WILSON (Laval) (translation):
Mr. Chairman, I will not ask you to keep your eye on me, for your official position does not permit you to watch anything , but the hand of the clock -maT-king the hours which will take u.s up to two- o'clock that fatal -hour of the day which shall follow this one.
I will not ask you to listen to -me, because you are impatient, officially, to hear the two strokes of that clock which, like -unto the mechanism' of a -safety vault, will open at two- o'clock sharp the doors of the Public Treasury to-morrow morning, and thus allow the -smiling Finance Minister to freely enter, the voice of the last keeper of the treasury having then been stifled.
In rising, Mr. -Chairman, I have not the least pretension, not even the pretension that -any -argument I might make would in -any way advance our cause. The only pretension I may have is based upon a most mathemath-ical and mechanical truth, that I will only advance the discussion by twenty -minutes and that is -all. (What proposition- is there now before us, Mr. Chairman? A -money proposal.
When, in 1913, the closure w-as imposed upon us, I believed, in my " candeur naive to use the poet'-s expression-that the Government then in power would only use such a measure under most extraordinary circumstances: when the country's
safety would be at stake, when any invasion from -any foe whatever, would put the country's security in dir-e peril. But not at all, Mr. Chairman, for the -second time closure is applied, and it is about -a -money matter. The first time this measure was applied, if my memory serves me right, it was a question of some 535,000,000 which the then government -wanted to take from the national chest to make a gift of it to the mother country, England, for -a well known, plainly stated object, there was no possible equivocation. The idea was to increase the empire's nav.a' force, to pay a certain -amount to -the imperial treasury, for the construction of three dreadnoughts, at an approximative cost of some ten or twelve millions each, if I ire-member well. We objected to- that proposition made by the Government, although the House was perfectly informed as to- the nature of this expenditure, of the -application of this money, of how it should be employed, -and for my part, I never tho-ught, -for one moment, that the
535.000. 000 -which we were to put into the hands of the British Minister of Finance would be wrongfully expended1; but we objected to the very principle of -the Act, we said-and rightfully so-that if we had
535.000. 000 to -spend, it were better to- spend them f-or a Canadian navy than -to -aid the imperial admiralty, and events -have justified us.
I will not further refer to that political episode, only -to -recall wha-t I was saying
Mr. Chairman, I repeat it, it is an. extraordinary measure we are now discussing; but. still more extraordinary, on .account of the considerable amount of expenditure involved and as to the change of policy which it is intended to inaugurate; for they have but one preoccupation in their mindiSi; to satisfy the appetite of tho.se who, having done a bad (business, will retire, not as *honest people, free from .all liabilities .and of all obligations-if the proposal was to send them back home in .such a condition, I would in no- way object-but with millions in their pockets and with the qualification which was applied to them, in the name of the Government and rightfully too, by the hon. member for Calgary.
Topic: CANADIAN RAILWAY SITUATION.
Subtopic: CONSIDERATION OF CANADIAN NORTHERN RAILWAY BILL RESUMED IN COMMITTEE-RULE 1TB APPLIED.