John Angus MACLEAN

MACLEAN, The Hon. John Angus, P.C., O.C., D.F.C., C.D., B.Sc., LL.D.

Personal Data

Party
Progressive Conservative
Constituency
Malpeque (Prince Edward Island)
Birth Date
May 15, 1914
Deceased Date
February 15, 2000
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angus_MacLean
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=89ac7ae7-ddc1-4da4-b856-57690240d2c4&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
airplane pilot, farmer, flying instructor, test pilot

Parliamentary Career

June 25, 1951 - June 13, 1953
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
August 10, 1953 - April 12, 1957
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
June 10, 1957 - February 1, 1958
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
  • Minister of Fisheries (June 21, 1957 - April 21, 1963)
March 31, 1958 - April 19, 1962
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
  • Minister of Fisheries (June 21, 1957 - April 21, 1963)
June 18, 1962 - February 6, 1963
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
  • Minister of Fisheries (June 21, 1957 - April 21, 1963)
  • Postmaster General (July 18, 1962 - August 8, 1962)
April 8, 1963 - September 8, 1965
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
  • Minister of Fisheries (June 21, 1957 - April 21, 1963)
November 8, 1965 - April 23, 1968
PC
  Queen's (Prince Edward Island)
June 25, 1968 - September 1, 1972
PC
  Malpeque (Prince Edward Island)
October 30, 1972 - May 9, 1974
PC
  Malpeque (Prince Edward Island)
  • Progressive Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (December 5, 1972 - December 19, 1974)
July 8, 1974 - March 26, 1979
PC
  Malpeque (Prince Edward Island)
  • Progressive Conservative Party Deputy House Leader (December 5, 1972 - December 19, 1974)
  • Progressive Conservative Party Assistant Deputy House Leader (January 1, 1975 - January 1, 1976)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 490 of 491)


December 11, 1951

Mr. J. A. MacLean (Queens):

Mr. Speaker, in rising to make a few remarks regarding the St. Lawrence seaway, I want to point out that for two reasons I do not wish to say anything with respect to the power phase of the project. One is of course that it is probably a very sound idea, and the second is that it is primarily a provincial affair. However, I should like to make a few remarks with respect to the navigation aspect of the St. Lawrence seaway development. I must say to begin with that I do not share the almost unbounded enthusiasm that certain hon. members seem to have for the scheme. We should remember that geographically our country is very large and spread out, that our population is very small, and that we already have a great and costly system of transportation which our economy must carry. The per capita cost for transportation is already very high, and we should be most careful indeed before we add to that load. We cannot but add to the load if we proceed with this very expensive development of the St. Lawrence seaway.

It may be of course that from a navigational point of view the St. Lawrence seaway would be such a stimulus that our economy would strengthen and our population grow to the extent that shortly the per capita load cost for transportation would be reduced. But I have seen no proof that that will be so, and I actually doubt very much if that will be the case. I have considerable doubt about the almost limitless enthusiasm of some hon. members that we can make ourselves rich merely by carrying products from one place to another and carrying other products back again. That type of economic philosophy reminds me somewhat of the gentleman in Georgia who had purchased a small truck, and who had $50 operating capital. With the $50 he bought a mule, and transported the mule across the county, after which he traded it for a cow. He transported the cow to another corner of the county and traded

St. Lawrence Waterway it for two sheep. He took the sheep to another part of the county and traded them for two goats; and he sold the goats to one of his neighbours for $50. His neighbour said, "You have been very busy, but where did it get you? You started out with $50 in the morning and this evening, after expending a great deal of energy, you have ended up with $50." The first gentleman replied, "Yes, I know, but look at all the business I did."

I am afraid that is the attitude some people are taking about this St. Lawrence seaway problem. We are not necessarily going to strengthen our economy by carrying goods from one place to another. What we should attempt to do is create sources of supply near the markets and create markets near the sources of supply. Let us so far as possible cut out all this business of having to carry goods from one end of the country to the other.

But, as I say, even if it can be proven that from the standpoint of transportation the St. Lawrence seaway is economically sound, there are many other side effects we should guard against. I cannot see where this is by any means an unadulterated benefit, an unmixed blessing. There are side effects which, if precautions are not taken, will have a very detrimental result upon the economy of certain parts of this country. An example of what I mean would be the development of our vast iron ore supplies in the Labrador area. Precautions should be taken to see that the economy of Canada is not reduced to that of a nation of primary producers and kept indefinitely on that basis, due to the fact that the iron and steel industry of the United States has the momentum of an earlier start and, for a time, can possibly carry on more cheaply than we can in Canada. We should see to it that, if necessary, an embargo is placed upon the export of iron ore needed for the production of goods we require in Canada, both for domestic use and for purposes of national defence. I can see no future for us, as Canadian people, in mining ore in Labrador and shipping it to the United States for smelting and rolling into sheets, then exporting it back to Ontario perhaps to be manufactured into automobiles, refrigerators and all that sort of thing, and finally to have it sold to the people of Labrador and the maritime provinces in a finished state. I see very little future in that.

We should make every attempt to develop our industries for ourselves. In that connection I am happy indeed to observe the broad-minded and statesmanlike attitude taken by certain members from the central provinces. But equally I deplore certain

St. Lawrence Waterway examples of provincial viewpoints, as they have been expressed in the debate. I resent the suggestion that if everything is well with the St. Lawrence valley, everything will be well with this great country of ours from coast to coast. That does not necessarily follow at all. That sort of narrow, provincial viewpoint is expressed by those people who at this late date, after almost a century, would revert to referring to this great country of ours as Canada. They would describe as Canada this dominion which stretches from sea to sea, "from the river unto the ends of the earth." They would describe it as it was originally described when it was two colonies in the St. Lawrence valley known as the Canadas. After all, in the beginning we were a group of colonies. We entered confederation so that we would no longer be separate and small colonies but rather we would be a great dominion, a great nation, a great domain from sea to sea. I am sure one of the reasons the fathers of confederation agreed to giving the name Canada to this new nation was that that name should be preceded by the word "dominion". The idea was that the Dominion of Canada should spread from coast to coast, from sea to sea and, to use the biblical reference, "from the river unto the ends of the earth".

If Canada is to become the great nation which is and should be its heritage, then it should be the concern of the government to try to look at our problems in a national way and consider all areas of the country. I do not think that as a nation we can prosper if there are depressed areas, if there are areas where there is not sufficient opportunity even to absorb the natural increase in population. I am shocked by the report in the last census which shows that the population of Saskatchewan has actually decreased in the last ten years. In this great country there should be all kinds of opportunities, not only for those who are bom here but also for those who immigrate to this country from the crowded areas in other countries.

The same is true of the maritime provinces. Ever since confederation the maritimes have been unable to absorb their natural increase in population. In that part of Canada there is not the opportunity there should be. Until we look upon our problems as those of a great area from the Atlantic to the Pacific, as problems that must be tackled for the benefit of all of us, I do not think we can hope to progress.

Therefore I support this scheme for the development of the St. Lawrence seaway only if it is a part of a greater scheme, only if it is one little bit in a large and beautiful mosaic of development which will make this country of ours the great nation it has the

right to be. So I suggest that we embark as one great nation upon a purposeful, energetic and broad-minded program for the development of the whole of this great country from sea to sea, and "from the river unto the ends of the earth".

Topic:   II, 1951
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November 26, 1951

1. What is the total of all rents paid by the federal government for accommodation in the city of Charlottetown from March 31, 1945, until March 31, 1951?

2. To what landlords were these rents paid?

3. What was the amount paid to each?

Topic:   RENTS FOR GOVERNMENT ACCOMMODATION IN CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I.
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November 14, 1951

1. How many veterans have been established in Queens county, Prince Edward Island, under the Veterans Land Act, since world war II, on (a) small holdings; (b) farms?

2. How many in each of the above categories have defaulted in their payments?

Topic:   VETERANS LAND ACT
Subtopic:   VETERANS ESTABLISHED IN QUEENS COUNTY, P.E.I.
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November 14, 1951

Mr. MacLean (Queens):

How many reserve squadrons of the Royal Canadian Air Force are equipped and active, in each of the following areas of Canada: (a) British Columbia; (b) the prairie provinces; (c) Ontario and Quebec; (d) the four Atlantic provinces?

Topic:   ROYAL CANADIAN AIR FORCE
Subtopic:   RESERVE SQUADRONS IN VARIOUS AREAS
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October 30, 1951

Mr. J. A. MacLean (Queens):

Mr. Speaker, as the representative of a maritime constituency I feel obligated to speak on this amendment, for important reasons. I have a feeling that the importance of this whole principle of maritime freight rates is not sufficiently recognized by this house. In order that it should be better understood, or put in its proper light, I think it is perhaps necessary for me to go back a good number of years to try to illustrate why the principle of maritime freight rates was ever brought into being.

Maritime Freight Rates Act

In 1864 a group of men representing what are now the four maritime provinces met in my constituency with the idea of forming those four colonies, as they were then, into a country. It was the logical and obvious thing to do, because the four maritime provinces were a natural economic unit. If they were united into one or were confederated, they would be in a position to carry on trade with their natural markets, which are the eastern United States; and they would be in a position to make tariffs, impose excise taxes and so on with respect to their economy, which would allow their economy to prosper as it was prospering up to confederation. As the result of a delegation from what was then the Canadian colonies, Upper and Lower Canada, that original idea was cast to one side and the idea of a larger confederation was entered upon.

The second idea was immediately taken up by Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Prince Edward Island did not accept it until six years later, and Newfoundland not until quite recently. The maritime provinces recognized that when they forfeited control over their own economy they would be at the mercy of laws brought into being by a larger legislative body in Ottawa, which would affect their economy. Before entering into that confederation, therefore, they made certain they had assurances that their interests would be protected and that they would be put in a position to successfully compete in the markets of central Canada. The population of the maritimes relative to that of central Canada, and its economy relative to that of central Canada, are so small that the markets of central Canada are much more important to the maritimes than the markets of the maritimes are to central Canada. The freight rates which exist between those two areas are of proportionately greater importance to the maritimes than they are to central Canada.

In an attempt to allow the maritimes to compete successfully in the markets of central Canada the principle of the Maritime Freight Rates Act was introduced. In that connection I should like to read from the preamble to that act. It can be found at page 228 of the report of the royal commission on transportation, and reads as follows: Whereas the royal commission on maritime claims by its report, dated September 23, 1926, has, in effect, advised that a balanced study of the events and pronouncements prior to confederation, and at its consummation, and of the lower level of rates which prevailed on the Intercolonial system prior to 1912, has in its opinion confirmed the representations submitted to the commission on behalf of the maritime provinces, namely, that the Intercolonial Railway was designed, among other things, to give to Canada in times of national and imperial need an outlet and inlet on the Atlantic Ocean, and to

Maritime Freight Rates Act

afford to maritime merchants, traders and manufacturers the larger market of the whole Canadian people instead of the restricted market of the mari-times themselves, also that strategic considerations determined a longer route than was actually necessary, and therefore that to the extent that commercial considerations were subordinated to national, imperial and strategic conditions, the cost of the railway should be borne by the dominion, and not by the traffic which might pass over the line;

In that connection the adjustment, which was the Maritime Freight Rates Act, was brought into being. But even under those conditions the maritime producer was not on an equal basis with the producer in central Canada with regard to the markets of central Canada. The result was that when we had these across the board percentage increases in rates, the discrimination was increased percentage-wise. This is easily understood because actually the increases were a geometric progression, so the greater the increase the greater the difference and the greater the discrimination. The maritime producer has been almost completely squeezed out of the markets of central Canada.

In addition, the situation is aggravated by the fact that the overseas markets for the primary products of the maritime producer have to a great extent been lost. The markets for pit props in Great Britain, apples in Great Britain, potatoes in the United States and fish in Spain are examples of this. It is interesting to note that this type of situation is recognized in the United States and something is done about it. It has been pointed out that the Canadian practice differs from that in the United States, where the interstate commerce commission and the railways provide for exceptions to uniform percentage increases in order to lessen the impact of freight rate increases. That is a principle which I believe should be recognized at this time. This is a very important matter, and one of vital importance to the people of the maritimes. For that reason it is of vital importance to all of Canada. It is not wise for us to assume that Canada as a whole can prosper when one part of her economy is suffering and is not prospering. After all, if the entire country is not prosperous the nation cannot prosper. We must be strong from coast to coast, and every section of our economy must be sound.

Some people have the impression that we in the maritimes are just taking up valuable time of this house to talk about something that is of parochial concern. This is a problem of national importance, and the people in the maritimes recognize that fact. This is illustrated by a letter which I received a few minutes ago from the Charlottetown

board of trade which mentions this freight rate problem. It reads in part as follows:

Now therefore be It resolved that this Charlottetown Board of Trade goes on record as strongly opposing any freight rate equalization plan that would adversely affect the existing maritime freight rate structure, unless it can be shown that there can be effected a basis which would not have any detrimental repercussions on maritime economy, and urges that no legislative action be taken that would permit any increase in the existing maritime structure in order to give effect to any freight rate equalization plan.

Topic:   MARITIME FREIGHT RATES ACT
Subtopic:   AMENDMENT WITH RESPECT TO WESTBOUND RAIL AND LAKE TRAFFIC
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