Cyril Frost KENNEDY

KENNEDY, Cyril Frost

Personal Data

Progressive Conservative
Colchester--Hants (Nova Scotia)
Birth Date
April 20, 1915
Deceased Date
January 12, 1974
building contractor, businessman, lumberman

Parliamentary Career

June 10, 1957 - February 1, 1958
  Colchester--Hants (Nova Scotia)
March 31, 1958 - April 19, 1962
  Colchester--Hants (Nova Scotia)
June 18, 1962 - February 6, 1963
  Colchester--Hants (Nova Scotia)
April 8, 1963 - September 8, 1965
  Colchester--Hants (Nova Scotia)
November 8, 1965 - April 23, 1968
  Colchester--Hants (Nova Scotia)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 1 of 14)

June 26, 1967

Mr. C. F. Kennedy (Colchester-Hants):

Mr. Speaker, I am motivated to enter this debate by the excellent and reasonable wording of the notice of motion which has been put forward by the hon. member for Saint John-Albert (Mr. Bell). The hon. member made a reasonable appeal to the house for the government to give consideration to setting up a committee to study the matter outlined in the resolution.

Basically the resolution covers something that has plagued us in the Atlantic provinces for 100 years, since confederation, the matter of transportation. We recall vividly, particularly during this year, that one inducement held out to our people to join with other parts of the country was the undertaking that coast to coast rail transport facilities would be completed. Those facilities were completed, and that part of the obligation was fulfilled.

Over the years much has been done to eliminate the disadvantages of distance. Confederation perhaps eliminated our trading with other portions of the world, such as the West Indies, which we could reach with water transport. Modern technology has made transportation more efficient, though nothing has shortened distances. Travel time has been shortened, but cost, which is another element of transportation, has not been reduced. We are still in an awkward position in trading with the rest of Canada.

Since confederation many small factories in the Atlantic provinces have been bought by larger interests in central Canada, and our problem is that we have had to import manufactured goods from central Canada over long distances of rail lines. The products which we harvested from the sea and the forest, the raw products or semi-manufactured goods, also had to be transported vast distances to our favoured market of central Canada.

Goods manufactured in central Canada are sold all over the country. Cameras, for example, carry the same retail tag in all parts of the country. Yet when one buys an automobile in the Atlantic provinces he has to pay between $150 to $200 extra for freight


St. Lawrence Waterway System charges. If cameras can be marketed at common retail prices in all parts of the country, automobiles also ought to be so marketed. Such marketing policy would help greatly our people in the far flung parts of the country. The cost would not amount to much and could be charged to those in central Canada.

I do not think anyone in the Atlantic provinces regrets the building of the St. Lawrence seaway complex of transportation, and recognizes it as a forward step to open up all the country. Without doubt it has been of great benefit to all parts of Canada, and it has been of some help to the Atlantic region. However, we in the Atlantic provinces have always been afraid of unemployment, and of losing during the winter months part of our transport business. Whether modern technology can open the seaway without additional cost to the country, I do not know. I doubt it. If that can be done, the costs involved should be borne by the carriers themselves. If they wish to pay the additional cost of breaking through the St. Lawrence ice, rather than tying up at a deep sea port and paying for the additional rail freight, that would be all right with us. We have developed the maxim that we live and that we will let the rest of the country live; and we expect the rest of the country to feel that way about us. We do not wish to impede general progress. When the rivers are closed for navigation any ships that wish to run the risk of entering closed waters should be prepared to pay for the costs of any assistance they might request if they become trapped during the winter. Even where flood control programs are inaugurated, with resultant benefits to ships, the ships using the waters in question should be obligated to pay toward the program, where it is felt that it is more beneficial to bring cargoes toward central Canada than to unload them at a deep sea port.

I do not come from a deep sea port city, but I know something of the railway system which serves such ports. The economy of our area has a great lift in the winter when heavy goods move from central Canada to our ports. Of course the stockpiling at those ports all the year round of goods to be shipped by sea also is good for us.

I will not labour my remarks. This notice of motion has merit. The economic structure of the seaway development should be carefully reviewed; we must make certain that it is amortized in such a way that those who use it will pay for it. It must not become a burden on the whole country. It must not be a charge on those who, through further development of

DEBATES June 26, 1967

the seaway, would be deprived of their traditional rights to employment and a decent livelihood. c>

(6:50 p.m.)

Like the hon. member for Saint John-Albert (Mr. Bell), I commend this notice of motion to the house and hope that someone on the government side in the few minutes remaining to us will rise and accept our suggestion that this matter be placed before a committee, where experts can be called and all reasonable people could give their views and discuss the matter in the way in which mari-timers discuss all their problems.

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April 17, 1967

Mr. Kennedy:

When I spoke toward the end of Friday's debate on Bill C-243 I was making an appeal to the Minister of National

April 17, 1967 COMMONS

Defence to delay further consideration of this measure until additional studies had been carried out as to its possible effects upon our armed forces. I was referring to the amount of defence which a country such as Canada can afford. What we must strive to attain is the most effective defence possible having regard to the means we have at our disposal; we must seek to strike a balance, and this principle applies not only to Canada but to all countries.

The cost of defence arises almost entirely from the maintenance of personnel and the supply and maintenance of equipment. From the point of view of cost it matters little what type of organization is set up; what does matter is that the force should be organized on the most efficient basis. Major changes should not be undertaken unless there is a reasonable chance of success. When a major change is made such as is contemplated by this bill, it is unlikely that in future years we shall be able to return to what we have now.

Everything has a price, freedom included, and we must be prepared to meet that price if we value our freedom. If we can preserve our freedom by the expenditure of dollars let us get on with it because in the past our freedom was won at a much costlier price, paid with the blood of our young people. If we can avoid paying such a price in the future by having a force which can deter or effectively contain a threat to our freedom, let us get on with it, but I would point out that our forces as at present constituted in three services have a tremendous record under the traditional idea of units raised through voluntary contribution by many people. In times of emergency our men gave all that men could give, and I do not know how any reorganization of our forces can improve on a man who is already giving everything he has.

[DOT] (3:30 p.m.)

Traditionally our concept of Canada's armed forces has always been that these forces are of a voluntary nature. We ran into difficulties whenever we resorted to any other way of raising forces. In effect this means that in peacetime we must have regular and reserve forces, particularly reserve forces because we cannot afford a large enough regular force to handle all emergencies. Supporting our regular force we must have an organization which allows quick and efficient mobilization of partly trained personnel.

Recruitment to our forces depends upon some attraction, and the greatest attraction at

National Defence Act Amendment present is the three choices open to those who wish to serve their country. They can go into the navy, the army or the air force provided they can meet the basic requirements of the services. It is no secret that in all our present-day forces including the infantry, which has always been looked upon as the bottom of the barrel, every serving man is a specialist in his own right. Even the infantrymen are specialists today. Nobody should think that the infantry is outdated. In Viet Nam more infantrymen are being used than any other type of fighting personnel.

I wish to deal briefly with the question of morale. It is something which is hard to explain. Morale is something that is within a man himself. Not even the man who possesses it can explain what it is. It depends on many things such as environment and faith or confidence in various things, not least faith and confidence in the people surrounding one. One of the major attributes of morale is esprit de corps. I do not know how greatly unification is going to disturb esprit de corps but I suggest that our present method of organizing forces linked to traditionally famous units is very good for morale. It invites friendly competition and even in peacetime it is a great attraction for those who wish to serve their country by affiliating themselves with something to which they can look with pride.

One of the greatest difficulties I found in service operations lay in the field of communications. There was no difficulty in having various arms of the services. On the beaches of Normandy on D-day it could not have mattered less that a lad was in a naval suit, an army suit or an air force suit. As a matter of fact, on the beachhead many people wore the uniforms of many countries. It did not matter to the infantry coming in on a landing barge that a navy chap piled out first into the water with a rope and went ashore in order to make fast the barge so they could follow with their equipment and reach shore without drowning. There was no misunderstanding. Everyone knew his job and did it.

So far as morale on D-day is concerned, many men went ashore ill from seasickness after crossing rough water, but they had been so well briefed and the organization was of such a standard that the minute they reached land they went into action and were as good as the rest in practically no time. I know of a company during the second world war which started with 110 officers and men. It went through hell to reach an objective

April 17, 1967

National Defence Act Amendment and only 18 men survived to reach that objective. You cannot tell me those men did not have morale.

We must be very careful in peacetime not to do anything with our forces that will upset the spirit of challenge and opportunity and security. These are the three most important things which affect morale. We know that at present there are certain people who are "browned off" with the forces and want to get out of them. I have talked to a lot of these people and their principal grievances are about these three things. They do not know where they are going. They become tired of being pushed around without being given a straight course to follow.

I might say that there is also a bit of hypocrisy involved in this issue. During the time of mourning for our late and beloved Governor General I had an opportunity to see the chief of staff, General Allard, being interviewed on television about the famous Canadian regiment, the Royal 22nd, in which both he and the late Governor General had served. He mentioned the terrific esprit de corps which this regiment had created. General Allard said that from this regiment eight generals, I believe, had sprung, and he expressed the opinion that had it not been for the existence of such a regiment many of those people of French descent might never have reached such high rank. That admission shows that an established regiment does a lot for a soldier.

[DOT] (3:40 p.m.)

There is another bit of hypocrisy with reference to the celebrations commemorating the great battles of the first world war. Endless reference has been made to the famous units which took part in those battles and the fact that the men covered themselves with glory in order that the names of their regiments would get into the history books.

In conclusion I express the fear that if complete unification is proceeded with it may bring into the armed forces some type of socialism. It might upset the relationship between officers and men which is so important. It might lead to a complete rotting away of the heart and soul of the armed forces. It might even end up in a type of dictatorship. Furthermore, I believe that unification will lead to compulsory service in peacetime and conscription in time of war. As an old infantryman I know that a large part of the training of an infantryman is concerned with learning how to use the ground. This means that he learns to use the ground to conceal

himself from the enemy, protect himself and get as close to his objective as possible. The objective of the infantryman is to close with the enemy. The only danger is that once he finds a hole in the ground, gets into it and is then shot at, it takes a lot of courage to get out of the hole again. I should like to say to the minister that he has been shot at not only by his own troops but by his enemies. He has perhaps got himself into a bit of a hole. I hope he will have the courage to get out and face reality.

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April 14, 1967

Mr. Kennedy:

I see there are only a few minutes left, Mr. Chairman, and I regret this because I have been waiting for some time to take part in this important debate. I can say frankly that as time goes on the debate becomes more interesting. There has been a lot of information divulged and good thoughts have been brought forth. This makes me feel more convinced that we should not proceed with this measure.

[DOT] (4:50 p.m.)

My conclusions derive partly from about 30 years of military connection in full time and part time service, ending on the fields of Normandy. In that regard one of my friends once made the humourous quip that my military career might have been longer if I had been able to get closer to the grass roots. I thought I was as close as I could get to the grass roots. If at that moment I had been two inches closer I should not have bought the package.

I know the evidence of the defence committee, on which I did not serve, was overwhelmingly against the major change contemplated in the bill. People generally I expect are against change. The older we become the

April 14, 1967

more we tend to resist change. The officers who testified had had expert experience, with a lifetime of loyalty and service to the country. Most of them had gone through many experiences. One cannot conceive that they would base their thinking on something that is out of of date. Rather, they were concerned that the right step be taken.

I recall during the war that a proposal was made for officers to be formed into a corps, out of which they would go to various units needing replacements. It was proposed, for instance, that officers with artillery training, with engineering training and so on would be sent to various units to fill vacancies caused by promotion. Had this idea been implemented it would have been disastrous. The step we are about to take, with this bill, is much more serious than that, and needs to be even more carefully considered. We are not considering this measure as a general staff, but as representatives of our nation. We must first think of defence.

Though we are at peace many problems must be faced. Many of those who served in the forces during the war would have nothing to do with the forces after the war. When war came they gladly enlisted and accepted hardships because of the emergency which existed. They hoped that by playing their part they might in some measure shorten the war, and they served without grumbling too much. That is a contribution one cannot expect in peacetime.

I do not think the Canadian people support this major change in the armed forces. It is hard to change traditions, and anything that changes a tradition should be considered carefully. It is said that young people do not care about tradition; I doubt it. I think they should care, and I think they do. When I undertook military training as a young man I did so voluntarily. Reserve units in our area were looking for young people to train, to give them experience as soldiers. There was no remuneration in those days. You packed your lunch on Sunday, walked six miles, trained all day and walked back. You were not remunerated but you felt you had done something for your country, that you were taking your responsibilities seriously as a young man.

I do not think that this government, a minority government, a government without a particular mandate from the people, had the right to take a step as big as is contemplated in this bill. I do not recall support for this

National Disasters

measure being solicited during the last general election. This country cannot maintain forces on a war footing because our resources will not permit it.

I see you looking sideways at me, Mr. Chairman. May I call it five o'clock.

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April 13, 1967

Mr. C. F. Kennedy (Colchesler-Hants):

Mr. Speaker, I wish to direct a question to the Secretary of State. In view of the heavy demand by organizations and institutions for centennial display material, especially flags, what is the policy regarding provision of such material on a complimentary basis?

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March 1, 1967

What facilities, broadcast and printed, with Canadian content, are made available to our Canadian armed forces and their families serving abroad e.g. in N.W. Europe and the Middle East, in order to keep them currently informed on Canadian affairs?

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