Samuel Francis GLASS

GLASS, Samuel Francis

Personal Data

Middlesex East (Ontario)
Birth Date
January 8, 1861
Deceased Date
April 6, 1925
insurance broker, real estate agent

Parliamentary Career

October 21, 1913 - October 6, 1917
  Middlesex East (Ontario)
December 17, 1917 - October 4, 1921
  Middlesex East (Ontario)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 50 of 51)

March 11, 1915


The returns do not show that. I know it is very easy to twist or rearrange figures to suit a purpose.

Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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March 11, 1915

Mr. GLASS (resuming):

Before the

House took recess, I was endeavouring to point out conditions as they exist at the present time, and to show that from all evidences Canada has more reason for optimism than for pessimism. The condition of transportation companies, the improvement of banking conditions and trade generally point to a hopeful outlook. Hon members of the Opposition have endeavoured in the course of their arguments to impress upon us the necessity for economy at such a time as this, but I do not know that they are any more impressed with the need for economy than are the members of the Government. It is simply a matter of difference of opinion as to the best way in which to conduct the - affairs of the country at this time. If one wants to see the dark side of a question, it is quite easy to exaggerate conditions. I have here a clipping from the Globe under date of March 5, 1915, only five days ago, which says:

Economy is contagious. Talk of hard times, whether warranted or not, is certain to cause a tightening of purse-strings. That industrial corporations not injured but aided by the war have reduced wages is a natural though a lamentable development, the glut of the labour market making it possible. The encouragement toward business as usual will have but little influence on men who see a chance of increased profits by improving opportunities, but there is no ground for a general tendency toward personal economy by those who do not fell any pressure in that direction. Farmers have not lost their market by the war, and so far as prices have been affected the tendency has been upward. Their position, so far as production and returns are concerned, has been improved. But it is worthy of note, and perhaps to be regretted, that they have been affected by the contagion of the economy irresistibly forced on many city workers. Instead of more freely patronizing mercantile and industrial establishments in accordance with the better markets they are enjoying, the farmers have been inclined to fall into line with the prevailing habit.


The prosperity of agriculture is a matter for congratulation. The farmer has borne the heavy end of the load, and it is always cause for general satisfaction when he comes into his own. Our dependence on him is revealed and confessed in the request that he increase his output. The individual farmer, knowing how ignorant the wisest adviser must be regarding the personal considerations surrounding the operation of his farm, may resent advice as to methods or general operations. But the advice to enjoy the good things within reach and extend liberal patronage to other industries now feeling depression may be regarded from a broader outlook. The farmer has no ground for fearing the influence of the war. His business Can never be ruined. He may be injured by taxation or by the obstruction of trade routes, but the world will continue to demand all he can produce. In the matter of markets he has nothing to fear. It is in the interest of the province and the Dominion at large that the farmers fully enjoy the prosperity that has fallen to them through the necessities of an unprecedented situation. By thus benefiting themselves they will confer a still wider benefit or, their fellow-citizens now, in many cases, sadly in need.

Agriculture is the great basic industry of Canada, and its products yield practically $1,000,000,000 a year. At a time like this, when the demand for gold is so great, and when the impossibility of increasing our borrowings is so evident, the fact that the farmers of this country can produce from the soil products to the value of $1,000,000,000, is a matter of congratulation and should dissipate all pessimism.

Before recess, speaking of the development of the business of this country under our wise and prudent tariff policy, I said that this country was justified in adopting that policy by the experience of countries in Europe and on this side of the Atlantic which had adopted protection. The wealth of all the countries of the world has grown enormously during the past century. Sir George Paish, who is an authority on statistics, says that the wealth of the United Kingdom in 1814 was computed at $12,500,000,000, while a conservative estimate would place it now at about $85,000,000,000, or an increase of about 580 per cent, while its population has grown 130 per cent. The income of the British people has increased 700 per cent-from $1,500,000,000 to $12,000,000,000. We all admit that the United Kingdom has prospered under free trade to a degree which must he gratifying to that nation, and the colonies take just pride in that prosperity. For the sake of comparison I want to point out that the wealth of the United States in the same period has increased from about $1,750,000,00Q to something like $150,000,000,000, or nearly 8,500 per cent; and the income of the people has risen from less than $500,000,000 to about

$35,000,000,000 a year, a matter of 6,500 per cent. To those who uphold the doctrine of free trade we admit that it has done in Britain what protection has done to a larger extent in this country. If the nation to the south of us, following along on the lines of protection, has built up such powerful industries and has so developed its factories, and has increased its wealth to such an extent as is shown by these figures, we feel that the conditions that prevail in the United States should prevail in Canada and that it is our duty to protect our Canadian workmen. We have evidences everywhere of the benefits of protection. A clipping I have here shows how necessary it is for the large factories in the United States to establish factories in Canada. '

" Our company Is now incorporating in Canada and will build a factory at Toronto," said Mr. Booth to-day, " simply because our tariff policy is wrong. Canada is a great, aggressive vitalizing country commercially and a great market. It is naturally a commercial unit with the United States, but tariff walls separate the two countries, and we are forced to go to Canada with a factory to escape the Canadian products without asking for reciprocal advantage in their markets for 30 to 35 per cent burden their tariff imposes. Meanwhile, the Wilson administration is proposing to open our markets to our manufacturers."

That is a condition which existed some time ago. We know that Governor Foss in the state of Massachusetts, in appealing to his people, drew particular attention to the fact that $500,000,000 of American capital had been invested in industries in Canada because they were compelled to come to this country to obtain the market of which they were deprived by reason of the tariff of Canada against them. I do not see how, with such evidence before us, there can be any ground for arguing that this policy has not been a good policy for our country.

My hon. friend from Guysborough (Mr. Sinclair) in his closing remarks made one or two observations to which I wish to refer. I am surprised that my hon. friend should draw any comparison between the conditions under which the contingent was sent to fight for the Mother Country in South Africa in 1899 and the conditions under which the immense body of troops was organized to assist the Empire in the present crisis. I am surprised also that he should refer as he did to the efforts of the Militia Department in the organization of the camp at Valcar-tier. It is quite possible that, with the short time at the disposal of the department an(I the very extraordinary conditions that existed, mistakes may have been

made in connection with that camp, but I think it 'is a tribute to the capacity of this department of the Government, and of the Government itself, that so enormous a camp should have been organized in so short a time, gathering men from the four quarters of this great country, equipping them, and sending them out within the space of a few weeks. I had the pleasure of visiting the camp myself, and was very much impressed with the wonderful executive ability and energy displayed and with the wonderful things accomplished in so short a time. The contingent for South Africa, to which my hon. friend alluded, and which he compared with the contingents that the Government is sending forward to-day, consisted, if my recollection serves me well, of about three thousand men. I do not know how many trained regular soldiers we have in the country at this time, or how many we had at that time, but I think that a draft of men could have been made at twenty-four hours' notice from the regulars stationed in barracks of the Dominion at that time, and there would be no reason wjiy that contingent should not have sailed within a week of mobilization. Aside from that, we know that at that time the sea was not menaced with hostile ships. In the present case, it took a considerable time to get our men across the ocean. We know that care was necessary, and that the Government showed its wisdom in taking precautions against molestation by pirate submarines or enemy battleships on their way across the sea. It is a tribute to the power of the British navy, as well as to the organization completed here, that so large a number of men-I understand the largest body of armed men that up to that time had ever been transported across the Atlantic, were carried in safety. And to-day they are in the trenches, fighting for Canada and for the Motherland. We realize that this war is no more the war of the Empire than it is the war of Canada. We do not regard ourselves as fighting England's battles, but as fighting our own battles. And if there is one thing on which this country and the Empire are to be congratulated more than anything else, it is that Britain's command of the sea enables commerce to cross and re-cross absolutely unmolested. If we have so little commercial disturbance in our country today it is due directly to the power that the British navy wields. In view of the protection that has been afforded us not only now but in former times and that has thrown its sheltering arm around our country, we are responsive to the call of duty, which is

the call of privilege, to serve the Mother Country in this trying time.

My hon. friend from Guysborough also referred to the British preference. I would like to ask hon. gentlemen opposite who do dot see eye to eye with us in this matter how they can logically oppose the increase of the preference unless they oppose increase in the duty on raw materials. The revenue has to be raised, and they concede, 1 believe-I do not see how they can refuse to concede-that we must have raw materials for our industries. A small duty must be paid on those materials in order to produce revenue. Now, in Great Britain raw materials are free, though they come from the four quarters of the globe. Would it be just to our manufacturers here to propose that they should pay a tax of 7J per cent on raw materials and allow the manufacturers of England, who have their raw materials free, to send their products here to compete with our labour? In other words, is it reasonable that we should put a handicap of 7\ per cent on our manufacturers? Even if it were said that the handicap is not so great, the best that can be said is that while the increase is generally 7i per cent the increase under the preference is 5 per cent. Hon. gentlemen opposite have been trying to draw a red herring across the trail on this subject of the preference. I think the Finance Minister put the matter very well yesterday when he defined " preference " when he said that a preference was an advantage given to one country over competing countries in the markets of another country.

The net result of the increase in the British preference is that to the extent of 2i per cent Britain is given a greater advantage over foreign competitors in the Canadian market than she had before. I do not think for one moment that there will be any criticism of this increase in the old land; nor do I think that there is any just reason why hon. gentlemen opposite should criticise it here. Evidently their only reason for doing so is to attempt to prejudice the minds of the people by asserting that we are fighting the Mother Country with tariffs while our men are fighting in the trenches. If we had taken any action other than that which has been taken, I am sure it would have been a gross injustice to the manufacturers of this country.

I have watched with very much interest the course taken by hon. members of the Opposition for many years past, and I have

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March 11, 1915


I have not made any particular study of this, and I was only stating the figures given me by my hon. friend. But I think that if my hon. friend wanted to be fair and to give the proper information to this House, he would endeavour to find out from the Department. The fair comparison would be not the increase in appointments but the increase in the number of employees now in actual service. That comparison would be a proper and

fair one; if the increase were unreasonably large in proportion to the increase and development of the work in the departments there might be some cause for criticism, but there is no ground for criticism along the lines my hon. friends have pursued. This gloomy picture that is painted of our country and the conditions that exist here is not justified by the actual results as shown in the buoyant statements of the banks, with their large reserves and deposits, and also in the statements from loan companies and insurance companies. Under the existing circumstances there has been a surprising growth in our railway earnings and remarkable improvement in the bank balances and clearings. All along the line the tide seems to have turned. On the 30th of January the banks of this country had a total paid-up capital and reserve of $227,203,192. The deposits in the chartered banks in Canada were $996,877,212, the deposits elsewhere were $91,807,007, making a total of deposits of $1,088,684,219. But the increase in the deposits for January over the corresponding month in'the year 1914 is very striking. These are things that come close to us and are indications of improved conditions. The increase in the amount of deposits this year over January, 1914, was $21,929,917. In addition to the capital invested in these banks, our loan companies have a paid-up capital of $59,700,000. I have not the figures of reserves of loan companies but in many cases the reserve exceeds the paid-up capital and I do not think I would be very far mis-stating the fact if I said that the reserves were equal to the paid-up capital. We have invested in our manufacturing industries in this country $1,247,583,609; in railways $2,250,000,000; in canals $102,000,000. Our factory output amounted to $1,600,000,000, and the wages in our factories to $241,000,000. These figures are for 1910. The returns for this year show large increases over them. It does not look to me as though this country were in a deplorable condition financially, and I think that all along the line the tendency is towards improvement.

Hon. gentlemen complain about the cost of the administration of the Post Office Department in Canada. I find upon investigation that even in the United States the total revenue of the post office from 1865, the time of the civil war, to 1913, was $3,775,000,000 and the cost of operation for the same period was $4,555,000,000. There was that difference between the revenue and the cost of operating the Post Office Department of that great country. From 1884 until

1914 there have been almost constant deficits in the Post Office Department of that country. In 1902 the deficit amounted to $2,961,169, and in 1909 to $17,479,770. The aggregate deficit in the United States Post Office revenue from 1884 to 1914 reached the enormous total of $210,544,802, or an average yearly deficit of $7,797,955. That is in the great country south of us, with their much more dense population than that of Canada and their enormous revenue. Looking at that record we have reason to be proud of the administration of the Post Office Department in Canada.

The development of the parcel post system and of rural mail delivery has been a matter of very great interest to the farmers of this country. I do not know that any department of this Government has ever had to undertake a matter more difficult or complex than the arranging of rural mail routes throughout this country. The work has been done well. From the district I represent, a pretty large area, I have not received a single complaint of the service that has been given by the department. When we want to get an estimate, of the prosperity of this country we sometimes look at the annual bank reports. Hon. gentlemen opposite say that the present condition of the country is due to the gross extravagance of this Government. Let me read from the proceedings of the annual meeting of the Royal Bank of Canada which was held on January 8, 1914. Mr. E. F. B. Johnston, K.O., in seconding the adoption of the report, said:

Personally, I have great confidence in the vigour and elasticity of Canada and its people. Compared with many other countries, people in Canada do not know what hard times mean. The fact is that financial stringency in Canada is generally caused toy over-prosperity. Many business men of Canada during the past two or three years have been doing $200 of business on $100 capital. If they had confined their business relatively in volume to the amount of capital they had invested in it, they would not be hard up.

He goes on:

We may ask on an occasion like the present: What of the future? I am very sanguine as regards Canada. Let us look at some of the evi-. dences of prosperity which are laid before us:

Then after giving certain figures in regard to England, he says:

Coming to our own country, we find a pronounced feeling of hopefulness. Prom every province comes the voice of prosperity.

That was the optimistic opinion expressed of the conditions in the fall of 1913 by the

director of one of our banks at that time. The Minister of Finance too, when the Budget of 1914 was brought down in this House, was considerably optimistic as to the future of Canada; for then, neither he nor any one else knew of the great conflict that was lurking in the rear. Let me now turn to the annual meeting of the Royal Bank which was held on January 14, 1915. Sir Herbert Holt, the president, in moving the adoption of the report, said:

The outbreak of war was followed by a convulsive derangement of International exchange and general trade. Stock exchanges were closed, in many countries a moratorium was proclaimed, and a financial catastrophe of world-wide proportions was only averted by the wise and timely action of the British Government in providing through the Bank of England, powerful machinery for sustaining and protecting credit during the war, and for twelve months after peace is concluded. Much credit is due to the Canadian Minister of Finance for the emergency measures so promptly introduced to protect the situation in Canada. The efficiency of these is demonstrated by the fact that the business of the country has pursued its ordinary course, and we enjoy the distinction of requiring no recourse to a general moratorium.

And further on, he says:

Having no misgivings regarding the final outcome of the war, we venture the prediction that its economic effect upon Canada will be beneficial, although the magnitude of the struggle is without precedent. Previous wars during the past half century (namely, the war of Prussia against Austria in 1886, and against France in 1870, the South African war and the Russo-Japanese war) were all followed by active and expanding trade, but in each case, only two countries were engaged, as against the inclusion of nearly all Europe on the present occasion.. .. If the present war be long-continued, the European nations involved may become financially prostrated for many years. Even if the war is not long-continued, the flow of capital from Great Britain to this country is not likely to be resumed for a considerable time, and new . constructional work will therefore be retarded. On the other hand, we reap distinct commercial advantages from our geographical position and remoteness from the scene of warfare, which permit us to prosecute our farming and manufacturing industries unmolested in suite of our participation in the conflict

That is the opinion of the president of the Royal Bank. I have said before that I believe the time will come when our industries in the great West will be so developed that they will impress even our friends in the West that our home market, which industries alone can build up, is a matter of some interest to them; and when that time comes we shall not hear so much of the cry for free trade. I should like to give the House some figures taken from the report of the Royal Bank, from which I

have already quoted, giving the number of capital employed, employees, salaries and factories in this country by provinces, the wages, and the value of products.

1913- Establish- Salaries Value ofments. Capital. Employees. and Wages. Products.Alberta . . 334 $ 34,166,900 8,079 $ 5,052,530 $ 21,747,275British Columbia. . . . 748 142,404,000 38,558 19,955,400 75,473,700Manitoba . . 505 55,491,000 20,053 12,630,800 62,126,500New Brunswick. . . . . . 1,329 41,814,700 28,654 9,623,400 41,000,900Nova Scotia . . . . . . 1,702 92,137,800 33,336 12,303,000 61,007,100Ontario . . 9,201 689,168,540 276,430 136,174,500 671,130,000Prince Edward Island. 508 2,330,000 4,354 614,600 3,618,500Quebec . . 7,592 378,441,000 183,124 80,368,600 406,167,950Saskatchewan . . . . . . 199 8,125,000 3,761 2,240,970 7,329,30022,118 $1,444,078,940 596,349 $278,963,800 $1,349,601,225

The total value of the products from all the factories was $1,349,601,225. Those figures show how this country has prospered under the tariff, and I do not think they furnish any reason for discouraging our optimism. I have said that the evidence all round shows that conditions in this country are not deplorable. In Winnipeg last year, in spite of the adverse conditions, 91 charters were obtained for industries, and 22 new industries were established in that city. Twenty-four of the companies that obtained charters had a capital of from forty to sixty thousand dollars; 24 a capital of from eighty thousand to one hundred thousand dollars; 6 a capital of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars, and 8 a capital of one million dollars. The prospects in that section of the country for the coming year are most encouraging. Since 1913 a great many more acres have been brought under cultivation, and the area under crop this year will be very much larger than last year. But, estimating the crop for next year on the basis of the area under cultivation in 1913, the value of the crop, at present prices, would be $293,281,218, as against $94,604,616 in 1913.

The estimated increased production and price of wheat alone for the coming year will be more than three times what they were in 1913.

A Conservative estimate of the oats, barley, flax, hay, live stock and dairy production, in which the prices for oats are placed at an advance of 100 per cent, barley at 100 per cent, hay at an advance of 30 per cent, with dairy products, live stock and flax unchanged, implies an increase in the returns to the farmers of the west of something like $88,206,758, as compared with a return in 1913 of $63,816,307.

This article goes on to say that

It is reasonable evidence that the farmers' crops for 1915 ought to approximate in value to him something like $381,487,976.

At six o'clock the House took recess.

The House resumed at eight o'clock.

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March 10, 1915


Is it not a fact that the financial conditions prevailing in 19i2 were directly due to the war which was then taking place in Europe?

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March 10, 1915


The Balkan war.

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