June 15, 1905

CON

George Eulas Foster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. FOSTER.

I think probably a moderate man may point a lesson which the Minister of Labour might take to heart. If there is one department that has been formed by the government under the idea that it should be entirely disjointed from party politics, it is the Labour Bureau. It is not the best way to give a non-partisan character to the Labour Department by making active political partisans correspondents of this paper and this bureau. The question is not whether it is not possible for a partisan to write a reasonable and fair article on occasions, but to prove that he could do so would not remove my objection. The Labour Department will take its character from its published press and its inner spirit and work, which is shown by its compilations and publications. I appeal to mem-Mr. BLAIN.

bers on both sides of the House if it is the best outside dress to give this non-partisan department, that heated partisans of either political party, and especially heated partisans of the party in power, should be appointed to office in connection with it ? The men who know these appointments iu the different localities will come to the conclusion that the Labour Department is partisan just the same as other departments of the government, and they will lose confidence in it. That you should take the subeditor of a Liberal paper and appoint him to be a correspondent of the ' Labour Gazette ' is not a crime, but there was no necessity to appoint such a man. The hon. gentleman who said you could not expect him to give up his other employment for the sake of $100 a year, would not exercise any great intellectual effort if he took the other side of the argument, and said that it would have been better to have avoided appointing such a man in the first place. If you want to get this department into a position in which it will do the most good, you had better give up employing correspondents wbo are active political partisans. It is no compliment to the great labour organizations of this country to say that you cannot find a reasonably fair-minded man who could do this work for you a mighty sight better than a newspaper editor. The particular class of information you want can be better given by a labour man who is versed in the work of the organization than by a newspaper reporter or editor. No answer has been given to the statement made here that a gentleman in the city of St. Thomas, who had acted as a correspondent, was removed because he was not partisan enough for the government. Unless there is a fair answer given to that, it is a pretty strong condemnation of the Labour Bureau. If the dismissed correspondent were competent, why were his services dispensed with-although he was a Liberal and a non-partisan-and a heated partisan put in his place ? If it can be shown that the first man did not perform his duties fairly well, there would be good ground for his dismissal, but there would be no fair ground for putting an active partisan in his place.

I want to say a word or two with reference' to the ' Labour Gazette ' itself. 11 is a little difficult to criticise this paper on the cursory knowledge a member of parliament is able to get of it. I read it occasionally. I note some things in it, but what is the object of this publication 5 Is it to make a readable magazine for labouring men in this country ? What number is printed and distributed ?

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Permalink
LIB
CON

George Eulas Foster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. FOSTER.

Then, to what proportion of the hundreds of thousands of labouring men in Canada does this magazine go '! There are magazines and labour papers which go into hundreds of thousands of

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Permalink

JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533


labouring men's homes in this country, which have all kinds Of information. Is it the purpose of the ' Labour Gazette ' to compete with these publications ? JXr. EMMERSON. It is a statistical record.


CON
LIB

Archibald Campbell

Liberal

Mr. CAMPBELL.

Mr. Chairman, I do not think many of the workingmen of this country will agree with the sentiments just uttered by the hon. member for North Toronto and the other members of the opposition who have spoken. I think the workingmen of this country feel that the ' Labour Gazette ' is filling a long-felt want. They have desired for many years to have some medium by which they could learn the conditions of labour in the different parts of this vast Dominion. It is true, we _ have labour papers. We have one in the city of Toronto, but its circulation is confined largely to that city. The ' Labour Gazette ' was started principally for the purpose of giving the working classes of this Dominion the news as to the conditions of trade, the scale of wages and the thousand and one things that interest them very much ; and I believe that it is accomplishing the end aimed at. The hon. member for North Toronto, with all his ingenuity, could only find two items to which he took exception. One was a report of the Dominion Coal Company. I would like to know if the men working in the mines of Nova Scotia are not interested in the condition of the Dominion Coal Company. I would also like to know if the men all over this Dominion, many of whom own stock in the Hudson Bay Company, are not interested in the affairs of that company. What are we doing for the manufacturing classes of this Dominion ? We are publish-

ing monthly returns of the exports and the imports to enable these classes to get an accurate knowledge of what is going out and what is coming in, and where the best markets can be found. We are publishing thes -at great expense. My hon. friend has no objection to that ; but when we publish a 1 Labour Gazette ' for the purpose of giving to workingmen all over this Dominion the information they want, hon. gentlemen opposite find fault with that, and try to make out that the Labour Department is a partisan department. These hon. gentlemen have been challenged here to-day, and they have not been able to show one single article in this paper that is of a partisan character. It does not matter who sends in the articles, whether they are by the city editor of the Ottawa ' Citizen ' or the city editor of a Belleville paper, if they are partisan articles and are published in this ' Labour Gazette,' the department is to blame ; but unless hon. gentlemen opposite can show that these articles are partisan, they have brought no charge against the department at all. The name of Mr. Snell, of Chatham, has been mentioned. I have known him for thirty years, and he is a most competent man for this work. He is a workingman ; he votes Liberal, of course, as nearly all the workingmen of this country do, and they are doing it more and more all the time. He could not do anything else. He understands the manner in which the government are conducting the affairs of the country. He knows that the country is prospering, and being intelligent he votes for what is good and best for himself an# the country. I defy the hon. member for Peel (Mr. Blain) to take up Mr. Snell's articles during the last twelve months and find one word in them indicating partisanship. But what Is all this fuss about ? The acting minister must make considerable allowance for our friends opposite. They are not in very good humour and require aii outlet for their indignation. They went up to London and told the whole world that all the workingmen there were going to support Mr. Gray and that Mr. Hyman had no chance at all. They challenged us to open a seat in London. The hon. member for South York tMr. W. F. Maclean) and the whole outfit went there and boasted they would carry London without fail. But their hopes were dashed to the ground, and Mr. Hyman's majority is sixteen times what it was last November. No wonder they feel sore.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
CON
LIB

Archibald Campbell

Liberal

Mr. CAMPBELL.

There is where we made the mistake. If we had gone there, we would have carried it. and it was against my judgment that we did not contest it. we would have carried it as we did North Oxford and London and Edmonton and Levis and how many more ? No wonder these hon. gentlemen are irritable. Thev made a vicious attack on the deputy minister. The hon. member for Haltoii (Mr. Mr. CAMPBELL.

Henderson) is going to invoke the rules of the House and have him turned out. I must say that I have never seen such an exhibition of ill-temper and chagrin as we have just witnessed. I would advise these hon. gen. tlemen to crawl into a hole and then draw it in after them. That would be much more dignified than wasting the time of this House and making a travesty of parliamentary government by trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill. They will no doubt learn by experience. Let them take Peruna or some other of these patent medicines, which will cure everything.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

I am very glad the hon. gentleman has at last some courage. Only a few weeks ago he was challenged to resign his seat, but he took mighty good care not to.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
LIB

Archibald Campbell

Liberal

Mr. CAMPBELL.

Why should I resign my seat and go to all the trouble and expense of running another election just to gratify my hon. friends. Would my hon. friend resign his seat ? His majority was only 16 at the last election.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

The chunk you cut off just gave 529 of a Tory majority, but still I pulled through all the same. The workingmen have evidently very little use for the ' Labour Gazette ' because only 10,000 copies of it are issued.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
LIB

Henry Robert Emmerson (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Liberal

Mr. EMMERSON.

They get it in their unions and associations.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

I congratulate the hon. gentleman upon being so well informed. But the total number is only 10,000. and therefore the labouring men evidently do not find it necessary to get it. Nor is that surprising. Associated with this department are certain men who were associating with the Ontario government for years, and when such men were brought down to this nonpartisan department and when they were sent out through the country, and acted in the partisan manner -they did, the workingmen lost what little faith they might have had in -the Labour Department or ' Gazette.' I want a little information from the minister with respect to the difficulty on the Pere Marquette Railway. I find that Mr. Hyman wrote to the department on the 2nd March. Had the minister received any other correspondence previous to that date or since in connection with this matter?

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
LIB

Henry Robert Emmerson (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Liberal

Mr. EMMERSON.

There has been no other complaint laid. Hr. Hyman's was the first.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

I understand the department had another letter.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
LIB

Henry Robert Emmerson (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Liberal

Mr. EMMERSON.

I will bring all the correspondence down.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
L-C

Andrew B. Ingram

Liberal-Conservative

Mr. INGRAM.

Was there another letter from Mr. Hyman previous to the 2nd March in connection with this matter, and was there any other letter previous or since ?

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
LIB

Henry Robert Emmerson (Minister of Railways and Canals)

Liberal

Mr. EMMERSON.

I am informed by the deputy that, as far as his memory goes, Mr. Hyman's was the first letter. Several hon. members spoke to Sir William Muloek on the subject, but the first formal complaint came from Mr. Hyman.

Topic:   SUPPLY.
Subtopic:   JTJTSTE 15. 1905 '533
Permalink
L-C

June 15, 1905