Charles Edward JOHNSTON

JOHNSTON, Charles Edward

Personal Data

Party
Social Credit
Constituency
Bow River (Alberta)
Birth Date
February 12, 1899
Deceased Date
December 1, 1971
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Edward_Johnston
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=c2d813a5-a966-4bb3-ae3f-2aa943b5d543&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
teacher

Parliamentary Career

October 14, 1935 - January 25, 1940
SC
  Bow River (Alberta)
March 26, 1940 - April 16, 1945
SC
  Bow River (Alberta)
June 11, 1945 - April 30, 1949
SC
  Bow River (Alberta)
June 27, 1949 - June 13, 1953
SC
  Bow River (Alberta)
August 10, 1953 - April 12, 1957
SC
  Bow River (Alberta)
June 10, 1957 - February 1, 1958
SC
  Bow River (Alberta)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 4 of 929)


January 22, 1958

Mr. Johnston (Bow River):

Does this bill?

Topic:   AGRICULTURE
Subtopic:   MEASURE TO PROVIDE GUARANTEED PRICES FOR CERTAIN COMMODITIES, ETC.
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January 18, 1958

Mr. Johnston (Bow River):

You were one of his best supporters this afternoon.

Topic:   AGRICULTURE
Subtopic:   MEASURE TO PROVIDE GUARANTEED PRICES FOR CERTAIN COMMODITIES, ETC.
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January 18, 1958

Mr. Johnston (Bow River):

Mr. Speaker, when we rose at one o'clock I was endeavouring to give the government some good advice, pointing out that I thought the bill was falling far short of what the farmers and the country were expecting.

I wish to make another reference to this bill and in particular to clause 7. Clause 7

is the one part of the bill which does make reference to the cost of production and it states:

The board shall from time to time in accordance with this act take such action as is necessary to stabilize the prices of agricultural commodities at their respective prescribed prices, and shall take such action and make such recommendations as are necessary to ensure that the prescribed prices for an agricultural commodity in effect from time to time shall bear a fair relationship to the base price for such commodity.

As that clause stands it is nonsensical, and I am sure the government will bring in an amendment to it. If they do not bring in an amendment, they should. The last sentence: "shall bear a fair relationship to the base price for such commodity" clearly needs amendment. The word "base" is certainly not the one intended, and I suggest to the government that it should be changed to the word "cost". But although this section does refer to cost-price relationship it is only under that part which deals with the duties of the board, and this could in no way affect the price of the products unless the minister himself so decides. Once again this is left to the discretion of the minister. He can do anything he likes, and I do not think that is a good thing.

When I was speaking on the resolution I pointed out that I thought one of the main purposes the government had in mind in bringing in this legislation was to curtail production. In the course of this debate the minister has pointed out that something must be done to handle farm surpluses, and when I made the remarks I did during the resolution stage he said I was completely wrong and that I was misrepresenting him. On that occasion, as I intend to do now, I referred to his remarks on page 2186 of Hansard on the subject. This is what he said:

I have endeavoured in this legislation to provide for the greatest possible degree of flexibility so we will not be saddled-

I want hon. members to note that word "saddled."

-with a program which inevitably acts as an incentive to produce burdensome and unsaleable surpluses.

If that does not mean that the minister has in mind some method of getting rid of these "burdensome and unsaleable surpluses" I should like to know what it does mean. That this was uppermost in the minister's mind is indicated by the fact that on two other occasions in the course of his speech he made reference to the same subject. I am not going to quote these references now because I did so on the resolution stage. The minister went to some lengths to point out that I was entirely wrong.

I wish to quote an article from the Calgary Herald. The Calgary Herald must be considered to be a very worthwhile newspaper, because there is no paper in Canada which is more Conservative. Certainly it would not misrepresent the minister, and if it has done so the minister should get up and say that he has been misrepresented. This is the article which appeared on Thursday, December 31 on the editorial page. It is entitled: "No Cure-all but Good Medicine." Good medicine for the farmers, I guess. The article reads:

The dominion government in general and agriculture minister D. H. Harkness in particular are both to be commended for the political courage displayed in introduction of the Farm Price Stabilization Bill, more details of which were made known here the other day by Mr. Harkness.

So the minister must have gone into it very carefully.

The proposed support prices are so designed that, should a surplus begin to build up, the government will attempt to cut production in the surplus area and, more specifically, will reduce the support price to remove the incentive for growing or producing the particular product of which a surplus is building up.

The next paragraph is a gem, and it states government policy, make no mistake about it.

Topic:   AGRICULTURE
Subtopic:   MEASURE TO PROVIDE GUARANTEED PRICES FOR CERTAIN COMMODITIES, ETC.
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January 18, 1958

Mr. Johnston (Bow River):

The Prime Minister was telling the farm people of this country that they would have a fixed period, a selected period. That was the promise. Then he went on to say:

-a selected base period when prices received by and prices paid by farmers were regarded as in good balance. It has been put this way. If you can sell a truckload of barley and buy with the money received so much food, clothing, buildings materials, fertilizer, farm machinery and other living and other production items as you could in a chosen favourable period in the past-

Let me re-emphasize the Prime Minister's remarks there.

-in a chosen favourable period in the past then your barley is selling at a parity price.

We have heard a lot from the minister as to what is parity. We have heard members of the Conservative party say that you cannot establish parity. The Prime Minister, on the other hand, had no doubts in his mind. He understood what parity was and thought it could be established.

Topic:   AGRICULTURE
Subtopic:   MEASURE TO PROVIDE GUARANTEED PRICES FOR CERTAIN COMMODITIES, ETC.
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January 18, 1958

Mr. Johnston (Bow River):

That was on December 3; then there was the bill which was introduced on December 14, and then there was a reprint of that bill. All I am trying to say, in effect, is that the government is now so confused that we now have a third bill before us.

Topic:   AGRICULTURE
Subtopic:   MEASURE TO PROVIDE GUARANTEED PRICES FOR CERTAIN COMMODITIES, ETC.
Full View Permalink