Sir THOMAS WHITE:
Worse,-I should say it would be worse. Economic laws show clearly that it would be worse, because on top of our tariff with United States you have another tariff of 17 per cent by the reason of the fall in our exchange. This discussion of the respective merits of tax-free and taxable bonds is not new. In fact, there is hardly anything new in the world. If my hon. friend will look up the Democratic platform laid down in the Civil War he will find a plank against tax free bonds. The Republicans adopted tax-free bonds, because they carried on the war; they were the people who had to face the financial situation and get the money. The Democrats could criticise; they did not have to act; and they put a plank in their platform after the war condemning the Republican party. History simply repeats itself. Why, Mr. Speaker, when war breaks out and nobody knows whether it will last one year, or two years, five years or ten years, or whether the country is going to come through bankrupt, or what the taxation is going to be, is it not advisable that there should be some certainty in the amount which a man may rely upon getting for his money, at a time when he can otherwise obtain the highest possible rates for it? The Republicans were confronted with that condition in the Civil War, and we were confronted with it here.
Now, Mr. Speaker, I do not want to offer the Government any advice. I have worked
with them; T know their zeal; I know their ability. I have entire confidence in them to meet any problem that is likely to arise duting the further term of this Parliament.
1 believe it is the settled opinion of this country that the Government should carry on.
The Prime Minister is ill. I have been pleased with the remarks of hon. gentlemen opposite with regard to the Prime Minister; there is always a chivalry in this House for tnen under disab'lity. Nobody knows fhe extent of the work carried on and the burden of the responsibility borne by Sir Robert Borden during the war and in the period since the war. Nobody knows the weight carried by the ministers. After all, men are only flesh and blood, not steel and iron. Sir Robert Borden is not the first Prime Minister of Canada who has been ill. Sir John A. Macdonald was seriously ill on various occasions. Sir Wilfrid Lau-rier was seriously ill in 1900. He told me about it once; so serious was his illness that it was looked upon as remarkable that he recovered. Prime Ministers are like other men, subject to human infirmity. The Prime Minister should have all the time he desires in which to recover his health. The Government is in good hands; at its head is one of the ablest parliamentarians in this House, if not the ablest. Carry on-that is what the people of Canada desire this Government to do-carry on, always dealing with questions from the standpoint of the national interest as opposed to the sectional interest. Unless I am much mistaken, the public will make short work at the next election of extrem- * ists of this kind. I have every confidence in the ability of the Government to deal with the weighty problems that may come before it,-the problem of promoting immigration; the problem of maintaining our trade and industry; the problem of dealing with soldiers' pensions and the Civil Reestablishment and rehabilitation of the soldier; the railway problem.
An election at this time? The leader of the Opposition surely would not want an election unless he had some hope of coming back as deader of the House and of the Government. We have taken over one of the greatest railway systems in the world, if not the greatest. The Government and those on th's side of the House have committed themselves to the largest project of public ownership that has ever been attempted. What is the problem? The problem is to organize and administer that system and its finances through competent men, who will not be influenced by nor ex-
posed to partisan interference, so as to get the best results for Canada out of that great railway system. Who is most likely to do that well-the Government that risked its political life on the great experiment, or hon. gentlemen opposite? I must say that if Liberalism be a vital principle, as is so often put forward in this House, I am amazed that when it comes to concrete cases, such as taking over those railways, it does not exhibit something of that principle. This Government, the people of Canada will believe, can take ov^r those railways and provide for their operation much more capably than hon. gentlemen opposite who do not believe in nationalization at all. There is no doubt about that. A great deal can be done in developing all our national resources, such as our fuel resources and our power resources, through the development of our canals.. These are great and weighty problems, but not beyond the capabilities of this Government as it exists to-day. I say to the Government: Continue, as I know you have been doing, look at every question from the national standpoint; rely upon the excellence of your administration, and carry on.
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