January 19, 1914


Mr. J. H. BURNHAM moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 3, to abolish Titles of Honour in Canada. He said: It has been rumoured that there is some danger of the spirit of democracy in Canada being compromised, perhaps not by this Government, but by the existence of conditions whi h will enabte the representatives of the people, through a misconception of their duty, to create titles of honour which are contrary to the spirit of democracy in Canada. This Bill refers to the powers and jurisdiction of this Parliament, and is intended to abolish such titles of honour, and to restore things to a normal condition of democracy. Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.


Mr. ROBERT BICKERDIKE, moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 4, to amend the Criminal Code. He said: The Bill is selfexplanatory. Its purpose is to amend the Criminal Code with the view of abolishing in toto the death penalty in Canada. I feel that the death penalty is a blot on Christendom, a blight on religion and a reproach to any Christian nation allowing it to stand on its statute-books. Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.


Mr. ALPHONSE VERVILLE moved for leave to introduce Bill No. 7, respecting the hours of labour on public works. He said: The Bill which I now present to the House lias been on the Order Paper for the past two sessions. Every one knows why the Bill was not reached last year, but I hope that this year we shall have time to reach it. As I said last session, I trust that the present Government will have the same disposition to accept this Bill as they had when they were on the opposition side of the House. Motion agreed to, and Bill read the first time.



Bill No. 2, to amend the Dominion Elections Act.-Mr. Burnham. Bill No. 5, respecting the Pollution of Navigable Waters.-Mr. Bradbury. Bill No. 6, to regulate Cold Storage.-Mr. Bradbury.



The House proceeded to the consideration of the Speech of His Royal Highness the Governor General at the opening of the session. Mr. H. F. McLEOD (York, N.B.) rose to move that an Address be presented to His Royal Highness the Governor General offering the humble thanks of this House to His Royal Highness for the gracious speech which he has been pleased to make to both Houses of Parliament. He said: I appreciate the kindly reception which has been given me on rising to-day, a reception, I fancy, that is accorded to every new member who makes his initial stet) in this House of Commons. I may be forgiven, Sir, if I find myself a bit embarrassed when, for the first time, I rise in this Chamber to say a few words, a Chamber that has with it and in it and about it such a wondrous wealth of tradition of the days gone by, such a glory of historic memories of the men of both political parties who have shaped the destinies of this young nation. The thought that will perhaps be uppermost in the mind of any man rising to address this House for the first time, as it is in mine, is that, after all, it is worth while to sacrifice something of material advantage to enter public life, to serve, in even the most humble capacity, this young nation which we all love. His Royal Highness, in the speech which he was pleased to deliver at the opening of this session, made reference to the comfort and support that went out from the Canadian people to himself and his family during the illness of the Duchess in the summer just gone. May I say-and I think I voice the feeling not only of this House but , of the Canadian people-that from every city, hamlet and farm in this broad land there went out a genuine feeling of heartfelt sympathy not only because His Royal Highness comes here as a member of the Royal Family, not only because following a long line of illustrious predecessors in the office of the Governor General, he has fully lived up to the high tradition maintained in the past in that office, but because of the kindly courtesy and the heartfelt sympathy which the Duchess herself has shown wherever she has gone in Canada. A word should be said in regard to the fact that in the fiscal year just closed, Canada reached the high water mark of her trade with other countries. This country today is no longer content to sit quietly by while other countries are gathering up the trade markets of the world. Our people and merchants are seeking every port and every country for their merchandise; and the present Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Foster), not now in his place in this House, has in his portfolio and position no sinecure although it may have been created as such. No; bis office is a living vital factor in the commerce and trade of this country, making for the upbuilding of Canada, so far as its trade and commerce with other countries is concerned. Canada is not doing business in any back street today. Canada to-day is just leaping into prominence. She is commanding now the admiration of the world and sending her products to all corners of the world; her merchants are competing on equal terms with big merchants all over the wide world. And what is the result? The result is the building up in Canada of the happy home of the labourer, the mechanic and the artisan to make this country great that we live in and that we of both political parties are here to do our best to serve. We in Canada, in common with all the countries of the world, have felt some of the financial stress, the tightness of money and financial stringency prevailing everywhere during last year. It would be folly for any man to stand in his place here and say that Canada to-day was not feeling the touch of hard times, to assert that Canada was not touched by the tightness of money as every other country in the world was touched; but I know of no country in the world that has stood up against those hard times and that period of money tightness in the way Canada did. That is absolutely true of the Maritime Provinces, and New Brunswick especially, the province from which I come. In our province, we never had a better business or a better Christmas trade or easier money than we had in 1913. In a year when there was money tightness and financial depression all over the world, it was fortunate that we had in Western Canada-and not only in Western Canada but in Eastern Canada as well, humbler perhaps in production but none the less a producing element in this country-I say it was fortunate that we had in Western Canada the most bountiful wheat crop that this country ever knew. It <ras eminently fortunate also that we had transportation facilities such that the wheat crop was moved as it never was moved before in the history of this country, making the most prompt money return to the farmers of the middle West at a time when such was the best thing that could happen to them and the best thing that could happen to Canada generally. I do not know that I may claim any credit for the Government or party which I support, because of the condition of the transportation facilities. But I do know that if the crop had not been moved the people would have been hammering at the doors of this Government and worrying this Government to death because it was not moved expeditiously. Perhaps the most important subject mentioned in the speech from the Throne is the Redistribution Bill. Certainly it is a matter of vital importance to the province from which I come, and to those other provinces down by the sea. I just wish for a moment to discuss the Redistribution Bill, not in any narrow, sectional or provincial aspect, because, Sir, I take it that when a man enters this House-or whether he does not for that matter-whether he comes from one province or another, he is a Canadian first of all. He forgets the narrow boundaries of provinces, and remembers that he is a Canadian and has regard only for the upbuilding of this nation. I may be permitted to discuss just for a moment the question of redistribution from the point of view of a Maritime provinces man. If ive follow the same principle that was followed after the census of 1891 and 1901, the representation of the Maritime provinces after the next Redistribution Bill will be: Nova Scotia, 16; New Brunswick, 11; Prince Edward Island, 3. That is, we will have 30 representatives in this Parliament where, at the time of Confederation, we had 40. I want to frankly admit to this House, and to you, Mr. Speaker, that from a legal point of view we have absolutely no status. The decision of the Supreme Court of Canada, affirmed by the Privy Council, has settled, so far as present decisions are concerned, that we cannot hold our original representation, but I submit that though we have not a strong or in fact any legal status, we have the strongest moral and equitable standing. It is undoubtedly correct that at the time of Confederation the Fathers of Confederation had no thought in their minds of a re-adjustment downward. The only thought in their minds was a re-adjustment upward. They

were optimists, that is true. They could not at that time foresee the growth of the West. Prince Edward Island, I want to frankly admit, stands in the best position of all, and it can be shown, although I do not wish to trouble the House with any citations to-day, that there was a distinct agreement at the time Prince Edward Island entered Confederation that she should have a minimum representation of six members. That was not made a part of Section 149 of the British North America Act, but I submit to this House that population is not, and should not be, the sole guide in representation. Selfgoverning colonies must have adequate representation. In the minds of the men who represented New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia, there was no thought of a loss in representation. It could not have been in the minds of those men, sublime optimists as they were, that there would grow up in this country a great western country that they knew little of in those days. They could not foresee that there would rise up from their own firesides in those provinces down by the sea their best blood to go out into Western Canada and to make that western country great. I say this in no narrow spirit. I am as proud as any man can be of the growth of these magnificent provinces, but I do say that we should devote our best efforts to enabling our young men and our young women to build up all our great and mighty provinces under one flag of empire, the empire we love. This country owes something of equity, something of justice, to the provinces which have suffered by the marvellous growth that we all delight in of the West. Just these words to-day in regard to the matter of re-distribution; I thought I ought to say something about it. Representing a farming community as I do, I want to say one word and to bear my tribute, honestly borne, to the gentleman who occupies the position of Minister of Agriculture in this country. Since this Government has come into power, the farmers of my province, at all events, have known that there was a Department of Agriculture. In my province-and this applies to every province in the Dominion -agricultural schools have not only been made possible, but we already have one agricultural school at Sussex just about to be opened, and another in Woodstock that will be opened in a very short time. We have realized the goal of technical education for the farmer and the son of the farmer. And in these days, when un- IjMr. McLeod^. fortunately the city does attract the b-oys and when the scarcity of labour is the tremendous problem that the farmer has to solve; in these days when you have to make farm life attractive to keep the boys and girls on the farm, we have provided technical education not only in the agricultural schools but we have technical education expounded throughout the summer time on the farms themselves, so that it is brought right down close to the farmer and he and his son have opportunity to become real scientific farmers, to love their work, to stay on the farm. In this way it is to be hoped the problem will be solved of bringing the people back to the land. We are passing through in this country -I suppose it is the history of the world- a period when the drift of population is away from the land, a most unhappy condition. Women's institutes, which the present Minister of Agriculture has assisted so much, are designed to remove what some people are pleased to call the humdrum of farm life, to make cheerful and pleasant the farmer's home life in the evenings, and to cause him to be contented with his surroundings. All this must be of great advantage to our country and its people, because Canada can only maintain its position as a wealthy and growing wealthier country if the people stay on the farm so that we may be a great producing nation. While I have said that one word in regard to farming, may I be allowed to say just another word in regard to immigration? It is predicted in the Speech from the Throne that this year's immigration will be greater than ever in the history of the country, and we trust it may be so. But, modestly, may I suggest this, that the great lesson we must learn in Canada is not to have indiscriminate immigration but to keep the breed pure, and I believe the breed can be kept pure. The great majority of the immigrants which have come to our shores in recent years have been English, Scotch, French and Irish. I want the Northern races; I want them because they are adapted to this country. The French people come from a more southern clime, it is true, but the French people in the early days of our country's history came to Canada, and, in face of hardships almost unrecountable, they helped to make this country great. We want the races I have referred to, but we do not want such immigrants as came to us in days gone by, and especially do we not want such as those which helped to swell the population of the United States to such great number, but to the great disadvantage, in my judgment, of the people of the United States. Reference has been made to the National Transcontinental railway and to its early completion. I regret very much to interject a harsh note into a function which is supposed to be without any harshness, but I must point out that we in the province of New Brunswick are building a railway down the valley of the St. John known as the St. John Valley Railway. It extends from a point on the National Transcontinental railway at or near Grand Falls, 220 miles down the river, to the port of St. John. The burden upon the province of New Brunswick-notwithstanding the very material assistance already received and more to be a'sked for from this Government-the burden entailed by this railway upon the province of New Brunswick has been tremendous. The necessity for this burden upon our Province need never have been had the National Transcontinental Railway been located by the only route sane men would have chosen. The Transcontinental railway in New Brunswick runs from Edmundston, in the county of Madawaska, across to Chipjnan, in the county of Queens, and on its route through that province it will not pick up one pound of local traffic; it only means the burning up of the revenue producing forests of the province. I would not be doing justice to the people I stand for in the province of New Brunswick did I not openly declare that a great wrong has been committed against them, and that line in its course through the province stands as a monument of that great wrong. There is one way, not to right the wrong, but there is one way by which it can be to some extent remedied, and that is if we could build a small branch from the divisional point of Nappodogan to connect with the Intercolonial railway at Cross Creek, getting running rights down over the railway to The port of St. John. Unless that is done -and I purpose in so far as I have power to urge it upon Parliament and upon this Government-unless that is done, the money already expended on the Trans-continental railway in New Brunswick (and I am fair in saying it has cost $100,000 per mile) is worse than wasted. I regret very much, Mr. Speaker, to have had to interject that harsh note. I want to say, Sir, that there are two things not in the Speech this year, but which have been in the Speech in days gone by. One of these is a reference to a Bill in aid of the highways in this country. In 1911 and in 1912, as you will remember, a Bill was introduced providing for the expenditure of one million dollars on the highways tof our various provinces, and providing also for the distribution of that money under the fairest and most equitable terms. That Bill caught the heart of the provinces of Canada. Nothing else could be done that would appeal more to the farming population that I represent. Nothing else could be done to make it easier for the farmer to stay on the land, because his mode of transportation to get his crop to the nearest railway station is over the roads. It meant in my province $50,000 to $60,000 in 1911-12. If the roads had been built, it would have greatly improved transportation facilities. I could hardly understand the partisanship run mad, and that again in 1912-13, when a million and a half of money was voted by the representatives of the people of this country, the Bill should again be defeated. I tell you frankly that we, in the province of New Brunswick, looked forward with the greatest anticipation to receiving that money. We needed it; other provinces needed it, and I can only regret that men found it possible, through a spirit of partisanship, to take away from their own people those things that came nearer to doing practical good to the people whence they came than any other thing could possibly do. . Before I sit down, I wish to speak with regard to another matter that is not mentioned in the Speech. I am not specifically informed as to why no reference is made to naval aid to the mother land, but I fancy that the right honourable leader of this Government (Mr. Borden) having once had the humiliating spectacle of advertising to the world that any body of men, whether responsible or otherwise, would refuse to help Canada to enter upon her duties, her privileges and her responsibilities in the matter of naval aid, did not desire to undergo a similar experience a second time. I am not going to go into sky-rockets. I simply want to say this, Mr. Speaker. For many years before Canada found her feet, before we were possessed of the buoyant revenue that we have to-day, Canada allowed the taxpayers of a little sea-girt island to put their hands into their pockets and to pay the bill. Now we have grown big. We consider ourselves quite a people. We call ourselves a nation. We have at least this, that to this country has come, as

has come to every country under the flag, to black and white, to yellow and red, to every creed and colour, the right of liberty and equal citizenship under the flag. Yet, with our buoyant revenues, with our wealth of potential greatness, we have said that we are not willing to bear our share of the defence of that nation, of which we so often say we are proud to form a part. I rather sympathize with the Government and with the right honourable Leader of the Government in the disposition which made him refrain this year from mentioning naval aid in the Speech. I thank you, Sir, and honourable members on both sides of this House for the kindly feeling with which you have listened to the rambling remarks of a novice. I am not partisan enough to think that honourable members on both sides are not endeavouring to serve this great country and this great Empire, and I hope that with honourable members on both sides of this House I shall do my humble part in advancing the interest of this young Canada that we love.


Joseph Octave Lavallée

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. J. O. LAVALLEE (Bellechasse) (Translation):

Mr. Speaker, considering

my lack of experience I should undoubtedly have shun the honour of seconding the mover of the Address in answer to the Speech from the Throne, had I not realized at the same time that the invitation was intended as a compliment to that community of farmers and settlers in whose midst I consider myself happy to dwell.

Moreover the compliment thus paid is presently being turned into a priceless favour, since I am permitted to express myself in that language which my fellow-countrymen appreciate so highly and which the right hon. leader of this Government, as well as the majority of his colleagues, is proud to be able to understand and to speak.

Whenever my hon. friends on the other side have an opportunity of meeting the French-Oanadian electors of the province of Quebec or elsewhere, they should to my mind thank Providence for having entrusted with the management of public affairs in this country, a prime minister who understands and enjoys speaking it, though sprung from a different stock.

And in making public acknowledgment of this fact, they may be making amends for having allowed a despicable prejudice to gain currency in their interest, viz. that an English-speaking prime minister could not possibly be as well disposed towards,

IjMr. McLeod!!.

or as devoted to, the French-Canadian people.

On behalf of my constitutents and on my own behalf, on behalf of those pioneers of colonization who are carrying on the work started three centuries ago for a greater and more united Canada, I beg to tender to the right hon. Prime Minister the assurance of my most hearty gratitude for this kindly courtesy.

It has been stated that the twentieth century will be the century of Canada. I may add that it will be such only insomuch as agriculture and the agricultural class will have been granted their due share of influence in public affairs. It will be the century of Canada only in so much as this quarter of a century will have been the golden age of agriculture.

It was incumbent on this Government to accomplish for Canada what a Sully, under Henry the Fourth, accomplished for France in the sixteenth century. We read in history that, with a view to allaying the hard times which France had been suffering for a number of years, and with a view at the same time to improving the financial status of his government, that great statesman endeavoured to foster agriculture by having more land cleared, by building and repairing bridges, improving means of transportation, in short by doing for the farmer s benefit all that was of a nature to help him on and to improve his opportunities. 'Ploughing and pasturage, those, he was wont to say, are the real gold mines of Peru.'

Those means which ensured to France in the early seventeenth century a period of real and solid wealth and prosperity, should benefit- our country to a large extent. Similar means are bound to bring about similar results.

Such is my sincere belief, Mr. Speaker, and I am satisfied that this same policy would successfully, and once for all, solve the problem of the high cost of living which has been growing on us for the last decade, and which has its starting point in the fact that agricultural production has not kept pace with the increase of population in business and industrial centres.

I say that within the last ten years the progress of agriculture, as well as of the live stock industry, has not been on a par with the growth of population. The last census contains interesting statistics in this connection. They go to show that the population of several countries in the older

provinces, instead of growing has diminished, and that business and manufacturing towns and cities have grown in proportion. Rule of thumb and slipshod methods have had the upper hand over the suggestions of a reasoned and progressive husbandry, such as would have resulted from a practical and painstaking teaching of agriculture. Accordingly we have witnessed the exodus of farmers' sons towards the cities, and the consequent scarcity of that labour with which farming cannot dispense.

So it was that on reaching power this Government had to find some immediate means of preventing an imminent crisis, by means of legislation for the encouragement of agriculture and an appropriation of ten millions towards that end.

It goes without saying, Mr. Speaker, that we have not yet in such short time felt the beneficial effects of such a policy. In the province of Quebec peradventure, we may have to wait longer than elsewhere for such beneficial effects; despite the safeguards taken and the agreements entered into, the Quebec local authorities do not deem it advisable to conform to the spirit of the law and the views of the Dominion Minister of Agriculture. There, more so than elsewhere, people allow themselves to be too closely inspired and guided by considerations foreign to the progress of agriculture.

I hope to be granted an opportunity later on to recur this matter and to show in what wray Dominion subsidies are expended in some counties for the mere purpose of making electors believe that things in Ottawa are actually managed by the Liberal party.

Referring once more to the Address, I may say that the people of ihis country rejoice with His Highness the Governor General on account of the bountiful crops which Providence has bestowed on this country in the course of the year just expired.

Whoever has had an opportunity of visiting the various provinces of the Dominion in the harvesting season of last year, must have realized, indeed, the unspeakable prosperity of this great Dominion. The yield has been immense and the quality good, as a rule.

Providence has been lavish, and hon. gentlemen may possibly condescend to thank her for showing such generosity in favour of an administration whose views and principles they do not always approve. Considering how superabundant the products, some apprehension was entertained

as to the possibility of carrying to their destination that wealth of the farms. Fortunately, thanks to the foresight of the Railway Department, thanks to the prompt action taken by the hon. Minister of Railways and Canals, that much feared congestion of traffic and grain transportation was avoided. Early in the. season, and without any undue stoppage, the grain from the West was moved to the elevators and other terminals along the railway lines and canals, and in greater proportion than heretofore through our Canadian ports and state-aided railway lines.

That shows plainly, Mr. Speaker, that by continuing to develop and improve our means of transportation, by ensuring the completion of our great railway lines now in course of construction, such as the National Transcontinental, the Hudson Bay railway, and I might add, by bringing about the building of the Georgian Bay canal, as soon as the Government are in a position to start that great work, they will be not only setting the framework of Confederation on a solid basis, through a closer union of the provinces, but besides they will be giving greater stability to market conditions and prices, and fostering commercial intercourse between the East and the West for the greater advantage of the country as a whole.

The continuous carrying out of a well matured plan for the improvement of our transportation facilities will accomplish more towards allaying that crisis and that craving for new treaties with the United States to the detriment of Canada, than would reciprocity, which some people look upon as a sort of cure-all the ills with which our country may be afflicted.

We still hear at this moment the voice of two provinces, Alberta and Saskatchewan, praying for reciprocity, on account of the surplus value their products would acquire on the United States markets, and which tariff barriers prevent them from securing. But, to my mind, Mr Speaker, that appeal will become less insistent, as our transportation facilities between the eastern and western seaboards grow and reach their full development, for then these people will find it just as advantageous to sell their products here or in Europe, as to ship them to the United States, especially now that our railways are provided with proper cold storage facilities at their terminals.

It iqay not be irrelevant and without interest, Mr. Speaker, to recall just now an event, an epoch-making event in the an-

nals of the old city of Champlain, which has left a profound impression on the minds of its inhabitants. I refer to the visit paid during recess to Quebec and Levis by the right hon. leader of this Government in company with the hon. Minister of Public Works, the hon. Postmaster General and the hon. Minister of Marine.

They did not, as so many had done before them in later years, come in quest of laurels or encomiums; they came as promoters and builders of works, large, durable and great, in accord with their dreams of the great future they foresee for that region, heretofore practically ignored . and neglected.

The days of trifling and dilly-dallying are over. Confidence is gaining ground on every hand, whether in agriculture, in finance, in business or industry. This Government, faithful to its traditions and to its national policy, guides Canada in its ascent towards its true destiny. The empire, . I might say the whole of Europe, have their eyes on us, and we are in a way to secure for ourselves an enviable place among the nations of the world, under the protection of the British flag.

Is it any wonder that an ever increasing stream of imigration should be turning towards Canada? The Dominion has become as it were the centre of attraction for Latin Europe, the promised land of the empire. It is no longer that snow-bound and ice-bound country, it is the wheat granary of the world and the finest gem in the British Crown.

Accordingly the Department of the Interior has been called upon to exert itself to the utmost, in order to be able to properly look after these new arrivals and locate them on homesteads at its disposal, with a view to facilitating their first efforts as settlers on the land.

If, on the other hand, and with the object of securing work in the cities a certain proportion of those immigrants, through motives which the department is not in a position to control or cast aside, have temporarily been drawn away from the farm, the greater part have settled thereon. This is no longer the time when roving Doukhobors, satisfied that they had some divine mission to fulfil, roamed through the western country singing the praises of the powders that be.

As soon as this Government reached power, the problem of immigration and of the bringing home of our people was taken up. Commissioners were appointed to

* Mr, liavalleeli.

look into the conditions under which that branch of the service had been managed.

While I do not wish to anticipate, I think I am safe in stating that there was brought to light a state of things such that this Government will find itself under the necessity of bringing about important changes in the system advocated and applied by our predecessors in this connection. Some ten, fifteen or twenty years ago, large numbers of Canadians had under our eyes been induced to cross the border; and those people were unable to come back home on account of the apathy of the then Government.

Nevertheless all of them remember their native land; their manners are after our own, and they have preserved the best traditions which make hardy and energetic peoples. At heart and in mind they have remained Canadians, they are attached to our institutions and are still loyal to the British Crown, though living under the Stars and Stripes. As I have said, the overhauling of that branch of the department of immigration on a more practical, fairer and more thoroughly national basis, will, if I am not mistaken, be taken up by this Government, and our Canadians settled over there will thus be enabled once more to enjoy the bracing conditions of our Canadian clime.

True, owing to the enterprise of our pioneer parish priests, with no other resources than their self-sacrifice and fervour, which recall those of the early makers of Canada, that return home is taking in larger numbers from year to year; new churches are being built in parts heretofore unexplored. In northern Ontario as well as in the farthest west, at the foot of the Rockies, French-speaking emigrants brought back from the United States are settling down and enlarging the realm of civilization and of the Canadian fatherland. I entertain the hope that in years to come, further impetus will be given to the work of bringing back home our people, through the painstaking action taken by the Conservative government in the matter.

The hon, gentleman who has just taken his seat, aptly characterized and described the present administration from the business point of view; he gave us a thorough insight into the country's financial conditions. The conclusion is forced upon us that, notwithstanding the large amounts appropriated for public works, notwithstanding the heavy expendi-

ture incurred towards the utilization of our industrial and trade opportunities and the development of our transportation facilities on land and on water, notwithstanding the great works being carried on at Halifax, Quebec, St. John and elsewhere, the hon. Minister of Finance has still in hand funds available for the cutting down of the public debt and the registering of surpluses.

That is the best of evidence that a wise government is not impoverished through the proper expenditure of public funds. What characterizes bad governments is the improper spending of the revenues left at their disposal. Such unprecedented success in the financial history of the Canadian Government is the result of the strictest economy, of an umimpeachable honesty, combined with industry and genius in the supervision of all and every department. We hear it stated in all quarters, and rightly so, that it was a business government the people put into power in 1911. That reputation has been well sustained, since after holding power for a period of only two years, without boasting or trumpery, this Government has made for itself a record which recommends it irresistibly to the confidence and respect of the Canadian people.

And should I recall the fact, Mr. Speaker, that the people of the province of Quebec, one of whose sons was honoured with the premiership of the Dominion, seemed for a while as if in a state of lethargy; but now they are awakening and taking their place along with the other provinces under the colours of the great Liberal-Conservative Party. That means the vendieation of the Conservative party, the conversion of the people to the men who advocated the National Policy and laid the foundation of the Canadian nationality in America. Quebec acknowledges as her benefactors and leaders those who carried on the life work of Macdonald and Cartier.

Their names stand for honesty, perseverance, industry and patriotism. Such are the facts which entitle the representative of the province of Quebec in the Cabinet to hold in the public opinion, in the hearts and minds of the French-Canadians, the place which was held by Cartier some fifty years ago.

It may not be amiss to state right here that the Post Office department has in the person of the present Postmaster General not only a man of push and progress, but also a benefactor of the people. Not content with adjusting and increasing the salaries of hosts of underpaid civil servants,

he resolved that the whole country would have the benefit of that important service, and acordingly provided for the establishment of numerous post offices, extended the rural delivery system and, particularly caused Parliament to pass that parcels post legislation from which great results are expected by the country folk.

Differently from some ol his predecessors, unmindful of what it might bring to himself, he has accomplished results out of his own mind, which are of great benefit to the people. In less than two years, the Post Office Department, as well as the Public Works Department, has given results which overshadow all that had been done during the fifteen previous years. I am merely speaking aloud what the people feel and think, despite the back-sliding and slanders of a blinded press, organized and paid for the purpose.

As soon as a fairer redistribution of the constituencies will have been effected, so as to enable the electors to make known their will, this Government (there is no undue optimism in thinking so), will be sustained by a majority of them. Have we not had, during recess at different times and in various parts, expressions of the popular will?

Considering those indications of the trend of public opinion, considering the facts which proclaim the good management of this Administration, considering the advance made in so short a period, this is the time to state and repeat that, since Providence and the people are with us, you should join us also. Why should gentlemen on the other side wage war on us, now that industry, commerce and agriculture have shaken off the fetters of the past, and entered an area of progress and prosperity? Why should they wage war on us when we have the support of the people?

As I said a moment ago, dickering, dillydallying, encomiums are no longer in season. Canada, our common country, is in need of the co-operation of all men of good will. As representatives of the people, we are entrusted with the glorious task, I should say the privilege, of applying our energy to the building up of this country, not only into the finest colony, but into the nation to-morrow.

In concluding, Mr. Speaker, I may be allowed to thank my hon. colleagues in this House for having kept in mind that youth is generous, confident and enthusiastic, and for having shown indulgence on this occasion.

I wholly approve of the remarks mads

by the eloquent mover of the Address in answer to the Speech from, the Throne, and it is with infinite pleasure that I second the motion.


Right Hon. S@

We have all listened with great interest and still greater pleasure to the observations with which we have been favoured by the hon. member for York, N.B. (Mr. McLeod) and the hon. member for Belle-chasse (Mr. Lavallee). I say we have all listened with interest and pleasure, though some of us, and I amongst them, cannot subscribe to many of the statements both of fact and of opinion made by these hon. gentlemen. Notwithstanding all differences, however, we on this side of the House are all happy to join with our friends on the other side in extending congratulations to both the mover and the seconder of the Address. My hon. friend from. York, N.B.-if he permits me to apply that term to him-came into this House preceded by a reputation earned in another sphere; and it is only fair to him to say- and it is a great pleasure for me to say- that on this occasion he has been quite equal to his reputation. Though I differ with him in many things, as I said a moment ago; I recognize the felicitous manner in which his views were expressed. He was especially happy in the terms in which he expressed to Their Royal Highnesses the sentiments of deep sympathy which we and all the people of Canada have felt for them in the cruel ordeal through which they have passed, an ordeal which involved for the one long days and weeks of suffering almost between life and death, and for the other a long agony of suspense and anxiety. It is the simple truth, as has been said by my hon. friend from York, N.B., that there was sincere rejoicing among all classes of the community at the almost miraculous escape of Her Royal Highness, not solely on account of the high position she occupies, but still more because of the many domestic virtues and womanly graces, the many high qualities of heart and mind, of which she has given so many evidences during her short stay amongst us. All classes of Canadians have learned, and every day learn more and more, to appreciate these qualities of mind and heart, and daily the prayers from millions of Canadian homes rise fervent to Heaven for her complete recovery.

Perhaps my hon. friend will not be surprised, however, if I say that when he departed from this subject and dealt with

TiMr. Lavalleefl.

the public business of the country, his remarks were not altogether so felicitous, at least in my opinion. He adopted toward the Administration, so far as the course of public business is concerned, a most eulogistic tone, a tone which, I believe, was not altogether in accord with the sober truth of the record. But if I say this it is not at all because I wish to take issue with my hon. friend on this point or to quarrel with him; for, remembering that once I myself was young, I know that it is always allowable to youth to be enthusiastic and even to carry enthusiasm not only to the extreme limit of exaggeration but even to the extreme limit of blind misconception.

Had my hon. friend been in this House before, I am sure he would have asked some explanations from the Government for having been so tardy in summoning Parliament together, for having allowed the months of November and December to pass without moving a finger toward the despatch of the busness of the country. My hon. friend is not aware, as you, Mr. Speaker, and I are aware, and as the Government I am sure cannot have forgotten, that it is a part of the law of this Parliament-the well-recognized though unwritten law-that Parliament ought to meet in the early fall and in any case not later than the month of November unless some great public event should interpose. Indeed, so well recognized is this law that the financial year was some years ago, changed in consequence of it, so as to run from the 1st of April to the 31st of March, instead of, as before, from the 1st of July to the 30th of June. What can be the reason why Parliament was not summoned as it should have been summoned, in the early fall? What is the public reason which can be invoked by the Government for having been so tardy and dilatory? What reason can there be except the reason wdiich causes the insolvent debtor with a small list of assets and a long list of liabilities to put off the day when he must meet the creditors to whom he must give an account? So the Government has been putting off, and putting off, and putting off, until the very last moment when they had to meet Parliament, their creditor and their master-and meet it with a very small list of assets and a long list of liabilities.

Had my hon. friend from York, N.B., been longer in Parliament he would have noticed something new on the Treasury benches. My hon. friend from Bellechasse may well have noticed it, for he has been here for two sessions. There are two

features to which I wish to call attention, of which one is new and the other is not new. The new feature is that we have on the Treasury benches, at long last, a Solicitor General. It took a long time to fill that vacancy. The mantle remained suspended for something like two years, but at last it has fallen on the shoulders of my hon. friend from Portage la Prairie (Mr. Meighen). My compliments' to the Solicitor General. I speak my mind frankly when I state that I believe he is wrell qualified for the position-well qualified from the legal point of view and still better qualified from the political point of view. He has been in this House for some years. It has been my pleasure to observe him almost from the day he came here; and almost from his first appearance we have had evidences not a few that he is endowed with a very subtle mind, that he is a past master dialectician. But, if I must speak my mind fully and give my hon. friend from Portage la Prairie all the credit to which he is entitled, I must say that while he is a clever dialectician, he is a still cleverer sophist. There are few men in this House or out of it who can clothe fallacies and paradoxes with more fitting garments than can the hon. gentleman. When it comes to the task of making the worse appear the better reason, few men can do more than my hon. friend the new Solicitor General. And, if the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Foster) were in his place, I would tell him that he had better look to his laurels, for even at his own game the Solicitor General can give him points. But the mystery to me is here: The qualifications of my hon.

friend from Portage la Prairie were obvious; not only we but the public-everybody-knew them. Why, then, has it taken so long for my right hon. friend the Prime Minister to discover them? I cannot imagine that my right hon. friend with his acute mind did not see that which was obvious to everybody. The mystery is why he should have allowed twelve months, twenty-four months, to elapse, without filling the portfolio which he has at last filled. Of course, the reason may have been that, while he was as well aware as others of the qualifications of the hon. member for Portage la Prairie, yet that hon. member was not the only pebble on the beach. The beach was strewn with pebbles. Looking before me now, I can see one, two, three fouT, five, six-


Some hon. MEMBERS:

Oh, oh.


Wilfrid Laurier (Leader of the Official Opposition)



Yes, six I can see, the friends of each of whom believed

that he was entitled to occupy the position, and each one of whom believed that he was more entitled to it than his neighbour. How is it that they have been left and my hon. friend from Portage la Prairie chosen? That is where the subtle mind of my hon. friend from Portage la Prairie served him. That subtle mind taught him that something more than legal ability must play a part in the choice to be made. He was not satisfied to show only his ability as a member of this House; he showed his teeth also. And when the Prime Minister saw those sharp teeth bared and ready to sink into his quivering flesh, all hesitation was gone.

You will remember that towards the end of last session the Bank Bill came back from the Senate, with some amendments. The Minister of Finance, who was in charge of the Bill, accepted the amendments, and explained them to the House. He said that they were trivial, nominal, and of no consequence; that although they were, perhaps, of some improvement to the measure, they affected in no way the principle of it. Thereupon there was a storm of indignation, or rather of pretended indignation, on the other side of the House. Some hon. gentlemen rose to protest, and the most valiant of these was the hon. member for Portage la Prairie (Mr. Meighen). He attacked the amendments most violently; he said that they changed the whole tenor of the Bill; he shot at the Senate, which he could not reach, and over the heads of the Government, whom he wished not to hurt. It was more than an attack; it was a warning. The right hon. gentleman remembered a page in the parliamentary history of England upon which it is recorded that when Sir Robert Walpole was prime minister a young cavalry officer was elected to Parliament, and the moment he had spoken the Prime Minister said to his friends, ' that warhorse must be muzzled.' It is evident that when my hon. friend the Prime Minister heard the hon. member for Portage la Prairie, he said to himself that that hon. gentleman would have to be muzzled. Unfortunately, as my hon. friend has chosen the great William Pitt, Earl of Chatham, as his model, and as the Minister of Finance has gone so far as to approve the action of the Senate, my hon. friend the new Solicitor General will have to use his best ability to approve also, whatever may be his own feelings.

The other circumstance to which attention should be called, and one with which we are unfortunately commencing to be familiar, is the absence of my hon. friend the Minister of

Trade and Commerce (Mr. Foster)., I am aware that that hon. gentleman is absent in England, and that he is attending the sittings of a commission appointed in consequence of a resolution passed by the last Imperial Conference. These duties are important, but. they are in no way connected with the Department of Trade and Commerce; in fact, such duties should never have been entrusted to a Minister of the Crown. The late Government had recommended a man of great commercial ability, and of high standing in the financial world, Mr. P. C. Larkin; but this recommendation was disregarded and the appointment cancelled by the present Government when they came into office. This was, I believe, the first act in their debauchery of dismissals; the last we have not heard. The Minister of Trade and Commerce should never have taken these duties to which I have referred. He should have remembered that, according to Scripture, no man can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. This is exactly what has taken place. My hon. friend has adopted his duties as commissioner and he has forgotten his duties as minister. He was absent during the greater part of last session; he may be absent the greater part of this session. It is true that last year he had the excuse, as was hinted a moment ago by the mover of the Address, that he was in search of trade for the growers and producers of Canada-a most laudable ambition. He went to China, and he went to Japan. I speak not by way of condemnation, but I may add that we have it upon good authority that my hon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce contemplates sending bakers to China and Japan to teach the Chinese and the Japanes the superiority of a wheat diet over a rice diet. Again I say I do not condemn; I entirely approve. Let the Minister of Trade and Commerce send not only bakers, but confectioners, pastry cooks, and culinary missionaries of every description, and let their mission be to wean the celestials from their gastronomical proclivities; from swallows' nests, sharks' fins, bamboo roots and ducks' eggs two years old, and induce them to substitute for these delicacies the modern preparations of wheat flour, and anything and everything in the way of cereals, not forgetting porridge, the food of the strong and the free in this part of the world. If my hon. friend the Minister oi Trade and Commerce, as a result of his pilgrimages to Japan and China, will succeed in obtaining for this country the sale ,

of one more barrel of flour than we have exported hitherto, the Government will have done more than they have so far accomplished during their four years of office.

The Speech from the Throne is remarkable for two things: first, for what it contains, and, second, for what it omits. Before I pass to what it omits, let me refer to-what it contains. It has a paragraph referring to the Hudson Bay railway, about which I do not propose to say anything upon this occasion; we must have more information than is contained in the SDeech from the Throne before we discuss that subject. But let me read this paragraph with regard to the Transcontinental railway:

. The work on the National Transcontinental railway has been rapidly advanced during the

ast year, and, notwithstanding the difficulties attending the construction of the Hudson Bay railway, and the provision of terminals, every possible progress has been made in bringing that important project nearer to completion.

If the National Transcontinental railway /las been rapidly advanced, we have only the word of the Speech for it, and we are not in much of a position to discuss the whole matter. ' At all events, we know enough to say, without any fear of contradiction, that if the work of the Transcontinental railway has been advanced, it has not been on the section between Cochrane and Quebec city. This part of the road should be open to traffic to-day, but it is yet far from completion. On the 19th of Februarv last, in the other branch of the legislature, a question was put by Senator Casgrain with regard to the section of the railway between Cochrane and the city of Quebec, in these words: .

Q. What was the length of the gap, in miles, on the 1st of November, 1912, where the grading has not been made between Cochrane and t he city of Quebec?-A. Thirty-five miles.

Q. What is the distance between both ends of steel of this gap to-day??-A. Eighty-eight miles.

So at the end of the season last year there were thirty-five miles of grading and eighty-eight miles of steel to be laid on that section; not a very heavy task, and one that should have been accomplished during the summer. I believe that the thirty-five miles of grading has been done, and that the section between Cochrane and Quebec has also been graded.

But yet the road is not in operation in any way and cannot be put in operation. For what reason? For the reason that the Government of the day have completely neglected to provide terminals at the citv

of Quebec. What have they done during the two years they have been in office? When we left office, in October, 1911, we had passed contracts to provide provisional terminals. We had a contract amounting to $1,000,000 for a station at the Champlain market. We had contracts ready to be given and I think they had been awarded for the building of wharfs on the front of the St. Lawrence, something like 2,000 feet in length, which were to cost something like $5,000,000. These works were absolutelv necessary for the operation of the road. It is impossible to operate a railroad unless you have a station. It is impossible to connect the road with what we hope to have, an ocean service, unless you have wharfs also. What has been done about these wharfs? Not one foot of them has ever been undertaken up to the present time. What has been done at the station? Nothing at all, my hon. friend the Minister of Railways (Mr. Cochrane) has cancelled that contract. He told us nearly two years ago, in the session of 1911-12, that he would not have the station at the Champlain market, that he was contemplating a union station elsewhere. He told us at the same time that he would have a small station at the Champlain market place. Has this small station been commenced? Not up to the present time. What has been done? The only thing done towards the provision of terminals has been the commencing of shops at St. Romuald. The late commission has laid out the shops at St. Foy ; the ground had been purchased and prepared; but the new commission thought it advisable to change the site of the shops and to place them at St. Malo; that is, to transfer them from the valley of the St. Lawrence to the valley of the St. Charles. As to this I pass no judgment because we have not yet had information on this subject. But I know one thing: even if it be good policy, for engineering reasons, to have the site of those shops changed, you cannot use those shops, as has been stated by the Postmaster General (Mr. Pelletier) himself, unless you have a tunnel from the valley of the St. Lawrence to the valley of the St. Charles. Has this work been commenced? It has not. When will it be commenced? It is impossible to say; we have no information. What time will be required for its construction? We do not know. Have the survevs been prepared? I am not aware that they have. No, nothing has been done up to the present time in order to complete the road and make it available. More than that,

I understand and we shall have to ask the information from the Minister of Railways on this point-that an arrangement has been made to have a joint station between the Canadian Pacific railway and the Transcontinental railway. I would like to know if the Grand Trunk Pacific railway has been a party to such an agreement as that. I have reason to believe, and I think I can assert-and I challenge contradiction on this point-that these changes which I have just mentioned, the removal of the shops to St. Malo and the removal of the station from the Champlain market place, have been made without the approval of-the Grand Trunk Pacific railway, and, under the law passed by this Parliament in 1903, the Grand Trunk Pacific railway must be a party to any such changes as these. If the Grand Trunk Pacific railway had been a party to this arrangement, Parliament, I am sure, would have been made aware of that fact long ago; but up to the present time we have received no information that it is a party. If I am in error in this I would be glad to be informed, and I hope the information will be laid before us at the earliest possible moment; in fact, I mav venture to say to the Minister of Railways that he is bound at the earliest moment to place before us not only the report of the Commission of Inquiry which has been investigating the work performed by the late Administration, but all information respecting all changes that have been made bv the new Transcontinental Railway Commission upon the work of the late commission.

My hon. friend the mover of the Address referred to some things that were not referred to in the Speech. Yes, there are two things not referred to. One is the'' Highways Bill. I was surprised to hear my hon. friend the member for York, N.B., (Mr. McLeod) tell us that the measure which was introduced was a fair measure in every particular. I say to him-and we shall have to debate this more than once in this House-that the Highways Bill which was introduced was not only unfair but was in direct violation of the constitution of Canada. It has been stated more than once that the object of this Bill was to help the provinces. I do not deny it; we never denied it; we have always affirmed the principle of the Bill, but we condemned the manner in which it was proposed to help the provinces in this Bill which was in marked contrast to another Bill introduced by the Minister of Agriculture to help the provinces in the matter of agriculture. One was passed and became law. The other was passed with

an amendment, and if it is not law to-day it is not the fault of the Opposition; it is not even the fault of the Upper Chamber; it is the fault of the Government who could not introduce a Bill in accordance with the terms of the constitution. Here is the Bill which was introduced last year with regard to helping the provinces in regard to agriculture. It became law; no objection having been taken to it. Section 4 of that Bill provides that Parliament shall appropriate a certain sum of money. Subsection 1 of section 4 provides:

The remainder of the appropriation for each year shall be allotted and paid to the governments of the respective provinces in proportion to the populations of the said provinces respectively as determined by the latest decennial census.

Is that fair ? This is fair and this is constitutional ? Every year an appropriation shall be made according to the census then in force and the money shall be paid to the local Government. Are those the terms of the Highways Bill ? They are not. If those had been the terms of the Highways Bill, the Highways Bill would be law to-day as the Agricultural Bill is law to-day. Here are the terms of the Highways Bill; compare them with the terms I have just read from the Agricultural Bill :

The Governor in Council may, in any year, and upon such terms and subject to such conditions as are prescribed by Order in Council, grant to the several provinces of the Dominion in aid of the improvement of existing highways or bridges, or the construction of new highways or bridges, or for all or any such purposes, subsidies not exceeding in the whole such sum as may in such year be voted by parliament for that purpose.

The Government may, at their sweet will, not pay directly to the provinces, as provided for in the Act for aiding agriculture, but pay or not pay to the provinces, or keep for themselves if they want to do so, the money appropriated by Parliament. I ask the hon. member for York, N.B., who was not in the House last year and who perhaps has not given this legislation the attention which we who were in the House have given to it, to compare the Act with the Bill and then to tell us that he can approve of the Highways Bill. Would he not say, on the contrary, in fairness, that the only method which should have been adopted was the one adopted by the Minister of Agriculture of paying the money to the provinces and letting them expend it themselves. This is the constitution. If we admit-and that nobody can deny-that the highways are under the control of the local Legislature,


why was it not done and why was the same principle not adopted in the Highways Bill as in the Agriculture Instruction Bill P Up to the present time we have not received a satisfactory answer on this point, and never shall we, because there is no explanation to be given.

The other thing which is not to be found referred to in the Speech from the Throne is the Naval Aid Bill. It was not more than three weeks ago that the correspondent in the London Times, who is supposed to be deep in the secrets of the Government, wrote to his paper, in a letter which everybody could have read if he had cared to, that the Naval Bill would be introduced again. It is not to be introduced. As to this, I have no comment to make, except that the non-introduction of the Bill to-day is the best possible justification of the attitude of the Liberal party on this question and of the amendment voted by the Senate last session.

The action of the Senate last session, on almost the last day of the last session, just before prorogation, called forth strong animadversions from the other side of the House. The Minister of Finance (Mr. White) on that occasion reviewed the action and attitude of an old friend of his and mine, Sir George Boss, now the leader of the Liberal party in the Senate. He endeavoured to be severe, and very severe to Sir George Boss. He compared him with Daniel Webster, whom he called the great apostate, and applied to him the verses which were applied to Webster:

Walk backwards; with averted gaze And hide the shame.

The passion of my hon. friend has had time to cool. At all events, I tell him-and I hope he is cool enough to understand- that the strictures which he passed upon the dead were the greatest eulogy which he could pass upon the living statesman, because the strictures which were put upon Daniel Webster have not been justified by the impartial'judgment of history. On the contrary, men there are to-day, and men there were in the day of Daniel Webster, to take exception to the strictures passed upon him for the action which was adverted to by my hon. friend last session. In 1850, as my hon. friend knows, the differences between the North and the South in the American Union were becoming very acute. There was a chasm which was every day growing greater, and Henry Clay, who was the greatest apostate of the Union of that time, brought in a resolution which was

destined-no, I will net say destined, because it failed of its object-but which was intended to reconcile the growing dissension between the two branches of the Union. Daniel Webster supported that legislation, and for having taken that action he was censured by some of the abolitionists of the Northern States. Among those abolitionists I must say there were some men of the highest character, such as Theodore Parker, Horace Mann and James Russell Lowell. The issue showed that even the .brightest intellects could be clouded by passion, and that some well-intentioned men never can realize that any stand on a public question different from their own can be

5 p.m. as nobile as their own, and that there are men who will never forgive those whose intellects plunge deeper into the horizon than their own. It was the good fortune of Daniel Webster to live long enough to see many of them recant their opinions, and, as I said a moment ago, the judgment of history has not confirmed the strictures upon Daniel Webster adverted to by my hon. friend. And, if my hon. friend will take the last and the best of all, he will find that the speech which was delivered by Webster, though criticised in parts, is declared by Cecil Rhodes himself [DOT]to have shown statesmanship of the highest order. There is more. The whole matter has been well summed up by one of the greatest minds in the last generation. James G. Blaine, in his work entitled ' Twenty years of Congress/ says:

The thoughtful reconsideration of his severest critics must allow that Mr. Webster saw before him a divided duty, and that he chose the part which in his patriotic judgment was demanded T>y the supreme danger of the hour.

I commend these words to my non. friend. The patriotic judgment of Sir George Ross showed what was the supreme danger of the hour, and it was because he saw the supreme danger of the hour that he acted as he did. Sir George Ross is well known as an intense imperialist, but upon that *occasion there was a question which was uppermost: It was a question of the autonomy of this country, and by that principle he stood. My hon. friend will allow, now that the matter has passed, for the present at all events, that the Bill which '-was brought in last session, was not even a measure of emergency, although it was so called. It was simply a measure of expediency involving a policy of contribution, a policy which had been denounced by the very men themselves who introduced the o

Bill, a policy which was not justified by anything which then existed. They introduced it upon the shallow pretense of emergency. Emergency? Who speaks to-day of emergency? Twelve months have passed since my right hon. friend the Prime Minister introduced his measure. Twelve months and more have passed since that time when 'he saw the German peril. He saw Germany almost ready to jump at the throat of Great Brkain. He saw clouds on the horizon; he saw these clouds rent by lightning; he heard the murmurs arid rumbling of distant thunder. But my right hon. friend to-day may live in peace: The atmosphere is pure, the sky is clear. My right hon. friend, I think, heard the words of the Lord Chancellor, which were pronounced in this country last year, to the effect that the relations between Germany and Great Britain, were cordial and he must have read with the greatest satisfaction that not later than five weeks ago a cause 'of difficulty between the two nations about some territory in Africa had been amicably settled. And from that time to this moment the relations between the two countries which were cordial in the month of September last have been absolutely friendly. The light has been let in on that question, and we know now how much the country and the empire and the civilized world has been deceived upon that question of so-called emergency. We know now, we have the evidence, how the panics of which we have heard in this House more than once, are created and engineered. We have had the evidence that these panics are engineered by the armour-plate builders and by the great ship-building firms who do not hesitate to create false news in order to obtain contracts for their ships. The matter was brought up in the German Reichstag, and the following letter addressed by the firm to one of its agents in Paris was read:

We have just wired to you asking you to await in Paris our to-day's letter. The reason for the telegram was that we should like to obtain the insertion in one of the most widely-read French journals-preferably the ' Figaro'- an article to the effect that the French military authorities have decided to accelerate considerably the re-arming of the troops with new machine guns, and to order double the quantity of the latter as against their original intention. We shall be much obliged if you could succeed in getting such an article published.

That letter was signed by two directors of what was supposed to be a respectable firm. The thing was denounced in the German Reichstag, and it could not rest

there, because it was found that army officers received bribes to promulgate this false news, and they were tried and convicted and are now serving sentences. Now we know why we have so often these recurring panics which are disturbing the peace of the world, and which, if they do not bring war, always bring fat contracts to the armament firms. Not only that, but we have the evidence-no, I will not say evidence-but it has been charged, and so far as I know the charge has not been denied, that the information which was given to us upon the German armament could not be relied upon, but was false and exaggerated. I do not speak of my own knowledge as to that, but I give as my authority an article published by Mr. A. G. Gardiner in the Daily News and Leader of London. I call attention to this paragraph in that article:

How that is done was revealed in the case of Mr. Mulliner of the Coventry Ordnance works. It was Mr. Mulliner who was the true author and begetter of the famous panic of 1908-9. It was he who supplied Parliament and the press with the material for that memorable agitation. It was he who was quoted with such effect by Mr. Arthur Lee, Mr. Duke, Mr. Balfour and others. It was he who was finally solemnly received by the Cabinet

the British Cabinet-to tell them all about the goings-on of Kruppis, the 38,000 new workmen whom Mr. Lee said they were employing-as a matter of fact there was a decline in the number of men employed between 1907 and 1909-the acceleration in shipbuilding and the menace of that fatal year 1912 when the Germans, we were led to suppose, intended to make short work of the British Empire. Fresh from that momentous interview Mr. Asquith and Mr, McKenna told the House of Commons that Germany would have 17 dreadnoughts in 1912 instead of the projected 13 ; Mr. Balfour, not to be outdone, said there would be 21 and possibly 25. When in due time 1912 arrived the Germans had 12 dreadnoughts completed.

This information, which was given by Mr. Mulliner, was repeated by ministers on the floor of the House of Commons in England, and repeated also on the floor of this House by hon. gentlemen opposite. I do not charge any intention of deceit on the part of the Prime Minister in this regard, but I will charge deceit if, in the face of this evidence, we again hear of such a thing as an emergency.

The German peril has disappeared, if indeed there ever was such a thing; but we have another menace and another peril which is far more dangerous; a peril which affects not the fate of the Empire, but which is bound to bring suffering to hundreds of thousands of His Majesty's subjects in Canada. I may say that this peril has found the Government singularly


callous with respect to it. Within the last four weeks the Minister of Finance has reviewed the economic situation in Canada twice; once in Montreal at the commercial travellers' banquet, and again at Gananoque, in his riding. On both occasions he pronounced the financial condition of the country perfectly satisfactory. According to him, it has not always been satisfactory, but at the moment he was speaking it had become satisfactory again; there were no more clouds on the horizon, the storm had passed. That I may not do injustice to the Minister of Finance, I quote his words as reported in the Montreal Gazette, which authority I suppose he will accept. At Montreal, he is reported by the Gazette to have said:

Our country has experienced its time of stress, and will come through it well. I believe the crisis has been reached, and passed in Canada, as in other countries of the world.

*According to these words of the Minister of Finance, the crisis has come and passed, and once more navigation is easy and Canada is in a good position. I am not surprised at these words, in view of the fact that two years ago the gentlemen opposite were exclaiming in times of prosperity: let well enough alone. The

Minister of Finance was satisfied two years ago to let well enough alone; he would not then improve the situation; he would not improve what was good in prosperous times, and now, in bad times, he and his party will, not reform what is bad. We have had it from my young friend from York, N.B. (Mr. McLeod) that we have reached hard times, and the people of Canada have, I believe, come to the conclusion that, as the Government did not improve what was good in prosperous times, we are now not far away from bad times. Well, the bad times are here. When the Minister of Finance stated, as he did that the crisis was over, he had two things staring him in the face. For the first time since 1897 we hear of such a thing as non-employment in Canada. It is well known that at the present time prosperous establishments of long standing are reducing the number of their employees, that others are reducing the hours of work, that others are reducing the number of their employees and the hours of labour as well and that others have closed down. And yet, in the face of that situation, when there are to-day, in Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg, Regina, Calgary. Edmonton and Vancouver, not fewer lhan

100,000 men asking for work, the Minister

of Finance says the crisis is over, and that we can be as confident as we were before. And at this very moment, when labour is scarce, and when the purchasing power of the people has been reduced to its lowest point, the cost of all prime necessities of life has risen abnormally. But the Minister of Finance says there is no crisis, and therefore there is nothing for the Government to do. He is not the only one of the ministry who has taken this stand; we have more instances than one to prove that the Government is singularly callous to the present condition of affairs. The Minister of Labour spoke on this subject, giving it as his view that there was absolute prosperity because the prices of commodities were so high. The Minister of Trade and Commerce also gave his opinion on this subject, as published in the Montreal Gazette of the 10th of December last. The reporter says:

Charging that Canadians were extravagant and must correct this weakness as the first step forward in reducing the high cost of living, the Hon. Geo. E. Foster made one of a number of notable speeches here in the Rideau theatre.

Then the reporter puts these words into the mouth of the Hon. George E. Foster:

Referring to the depopulation of the farming districts, Mr. Foster said he would not admit that young men were driven to the cities, but were lured there. He did not favour a commission to investigate the question. 'The Lord knows,' Mr. Foster continued, ' we have had enough commissions. They are as plentiful as blackberries. Commissions are roaming the country wasting good ink and paper preparing reports which are laid on the shelf and nothing done with them. It is not a commission that will right this matter. The action must be taken by the people themselves. Teachers and parents must not only give advice to the young people, but'must instruct them to the fact that the oldest industry of agriculture is also the noblest.'

This is good advice, but it was not followed by those to whom it was given, because hi a week from that day, I understand, the Government appointed a commission to investigate the high cost of living and the cause of the depopulation of the farming districts. That commission is composed of three gentlemen well known in the city of Ottawa. Mr. McDougald, Commissioner of Customs is the chairman, and in regard to him 1 have nothing but good to say. He is a most competent and valuable officer. I would say the same of Mr. Coats, who is the assistant Deputy Minister of Labour. Mr. James I do not know so well, but I have good reports of him also. What I want to say, however, is that if this com-24

mission is to be effective, if it is to accomplish any good, it should not be entrusted to civil servants. It should not be placed in the hands of the Commissioner of Customs, the assistant Deputy Minister of Labour and the other gentleman. It is evident that they must be restricted in their operations. There is one field into which they cannot enter. If, as many of us suppose, if, as the country supposes-I will not say more than that-the high cost of living is due to political causes, and I believe it is partly due to political causes, will these men dare to investigate that part of the subject? They will not dare to do so; they cannot do so; they are estopped from entering into that field. In appointing that commission, the Government have taken a course which will simply end in nothing. If there is to be an investigation of this kind, it should be placed in the hands of some of the members of the Cabinet-for instance, the Minister of Customs (Mr. Reid), the Minister of Labour (Mr. Crothers), the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Foster)-to mention these three alone-who should travel over the country from Halifax to Vancouver, and hear all classes of the community-producers, consumers, farmers, mechanics, professional men, clergymen, housewives-these last especially, because they are the most interested of all in that question. Nothing of the kind, however, has been done. The task has been entrusted to a commission which, as their report will show, can do only half the work.

We come now to the Speech from the Throne. I was not present, of course, when the Speech was prepared, but I can imagine that my hon. friend the Minister of Finance (Mr. White) must have had a hard task when it came to preparing this part of the Speech:

Canada has been favoured by a long series of prosperous years, and, although at the present moment business is slightly restricted by the financial stringency which prevails throughout the world, I feel convinced that this condition will be merely temporary, and that the boundless resources of this Dominion, which are so fully and universally known and recognized, give us the fullest assurance of continued material prosperity and progress.

When it came to these words:

Canada has been favoured by a long series of prosperous years-*

That was hard to fathom, because it was paying a pretty good compliment to the late Administration which had been in office for several years. But when it came to the other words:

Although at the present moment business is slightly restricted-

I can imagine my hon. friend, the Minister of Finance (Mr. White), saying: I made a speech a few weeks ago saying that the crisis was over. How can I say that it still exists? He was drawing too long a bow at Montreal. The Speech only says what is in everybody's mind, and puts it very mildly and gently when it says that business is slightly restricted. But when we have the admission from the Government that business is not in a satisfactory condition, what are we to say of the conclusion which is reached by the Government? We have the admission that the economic condition of the country is not satisfactory, and a confession on the part of the Government of its impotence to deal with such a problem. When the Government stated in the Speech -a statement which I am sure they placed very reluctantly in the mouth of His Royal Highness-that the economic condition of the country was not satisfactory, all that they did was to express the highest hope that matters would rectify themselves. They say that the resources of the country are boundless. So they are, but is it the business of the Government simply to rely upon the resources of the country? Are ' they to do nothing themselves? Are they to be simply flies on the wheel? Are they not to take any action at all? It is very true that the resources are boundless, but it has been shown that the resources of the country do not yield their treasures to those who rely simply upon statements; they want to be tapped; they want men to use power and judgment in order to develop them. This is not what is done by my hon. friend the Minister of Finance. The Government thus stands to-day convicted before the people that, while admitting that the economic condition of the country is not satisfactory, they have nothing to suggest in order to make it any better. Is this what we are to expect from the Government? Is this what, the people of the country have reason to expect in view of the fact that two years ago they placed the government of the country in the hands of the gentlemen who now occupy the treasury benches? Are we to be told in this age and at this day that the Government are in power simply to enjoy the sweets of office and to take no responsibility to better such a condition of things as exists to-day? If the Government will not take any responsibility, perhaps it may be well that I should tell them that they must act. They cannot afford to remain silent. They must act in order to carry out the duties which they .

have to perform. What action are they to take? There are several things which they can do, which they ought to do, and which the people expect them to do.

In the first place, they must give to the country, which is a young, expanding country, as stated a moment ago by the hon. member for York, N.B., wider markets than it has at the present time. There is one thing which they can do simply by a stroke of the pen; they can give to the producer of wheat the American market. They have received delegation upon delegation asking for that. I understand that my hon. friend the Minister of Public Works (Mr. Rogers), who told us last year that he knew how to win elections, stated, during the election in Macdonald, that, if it was in the interest of the people to have free wheat, free wheat it would be.

What more evidence does my hon. friend want ? He has received a delegation from the grain growers of the western provinces asking for free wheat. In the very legislature of the province which he represents here a resolution has been passed unanimously, not moved by a Grit but moved by a Conservative, to the effect that wheat ought to be made free. There was a delegation only a few days ago of some twenty members of the Alberta Legislature asking for free wheat. How is it, then, that the Speech from the Throne does not contain the announcement that wheat will be made free ? When this admission was made that the economic condition of the country was not satisfactory, we had reason to expect that some action would be taken. We have been disappointed in this. Is that all they should do ? No, they ought to do that which they have been asked many tjmes to do,-they ought to relieve the farming community of the burden of taxation which the farmers are carrying at the present time. There is one fact that is beyond doubt, a fact on which we must have more explanation before the session passes. Everyone knows that in regard to many commodities of which at one time we produced far more than we consumed we do not now produce enough to meet the home demand. Years ago we produced a surplus of butter and of meat of many kinds; at present we are importing butter, mutton and other commodities. The agricultural classes have found labour so, expensive that they have been unable to carry on their operations as they desired to do. It becomes more and more evident that if you wish to stimulate the farming industries you must provide wider markets than you have provided up to the present time. By a happy circumstance for which the

present Government is not responsible, the American market has been opened to our cattle and the farmers of the western provinces have received for their cattle higher prices than they ever received before. The consequence will be that in two or three years there will be more cattle in the western provinces than there have been for many a long year. It is only by the stimulating of the activity of the farmer that he will develop his industry and lead to the whole of this country producing what it ought to produce.

One thing more we should do. At the present time the farming community of the West is suffering from a combine of the shipping interests of the Great Lakes. They have petitioned for a remedy of that grievance. It is a serious grievance, because it involves a tax upon both the producer and the consumer; and the Government will have to deal with that problem whether they wish to do so or not. The law is there to be executed, and if the law is not sufficient it ought to be amended so as to enable the Government to cope with such problems.

The Government must also take into consideration the problem of the high cost of living. I know I shall be told at once that that is not a question that affects Canada alone. 1 am quite aware that it affects the whole civilized world. The fact that the cost of living has risen in allcivilized countries shows that there are causes which are universal and whichmay perhaps be beyond our control.At the same time, when we reflect that the cost of living has risen in

Great Britain ten per cent and in Canada fifty per cent, it is plain that there are causes operating in Canada which do not exist in Great Britain. Now', I wish to state the question clearly; I do not pretend that the increased price of products is a thing in itself to be deplored. One cause for it I state at once: for the last ten or fifteen years the price of labour has increased all over the world; therefore it was natural that the price of agricultural labour should increase also, and this has had the effect of increasing the price of the product. This increase went on for years normally and gradually, and nobody complained. But at the present moment things are different. We see to-day that between the price paid by the consumer and the price received by the producer, there is a wide margin, and it is that margin especially which it should be the effort of this Government and this Parliament to reach and to cut down. If the

price paid by the consumer w'ere the price received by the farmer, no one could seriously object, and no one would object. But we have the right to object when the prices received by the farmer are not those which are paid by the consumer. I have seen it stated many times that the tariff is not responsible for the high cost of living. I do not pretend that the tariff is responsible for the high cost of living in its entirety, but I say to the Minister of Finance (Mr. White), who, more than any one else, must have this matter in hand, that the restrictions imposed by the tariff are used by the combines in order to promote their interests and charge those abnormal prices. And we are told that nothing is to be done. We are told that everything is satisfactory; we are told that the Government is powerless in this matter. It is not for me to give advice to the Government; if I w'ere to offer it they would not take it from me. But I have to tell them, whether they wish it or not, that they must act: they cannot afford to lie idle. They are not free to remain still like logs; they must move. There has been stringency before in this country. We are told in the speech from the Throne that the resources of the country are boundless. So they are. So they have been at all times. So they were in 1893-4-5 and 6. But, though the resources w'ere boundless in that way, yet the people suffered. It was only when a new Government came in that had the courage to take the matter in hand that there came an era [DOT]of prosperity which terminated only when the present Government came into office.

These are some of the duties which face the Government. Whether they accept what I say or not does not matter. But I tell them frankly-no, I will not tell them, but I tell the country frankly-that if they take up these duties and perform them with courage, with energy and good judgment, the shops will be reopened, trade will revive, prices will reach an equilibrium between consumer and producer, and we shall have another era such as we had after the enactment of the tariff of 1897. But if they will not do so, there are other men who will have to take their places, men who have shown before by actual experience that they have the minds to plan and the courage to execute, men who have proven that when difficulty arose and when the time of stringency came, they were equal to the occasion. This Government may accept it from me or not, but if they do not. the people will have to pronounce between them and us. .

We have been told that in taking the attitude which I have taken and again take here we have been moved only by a desire for a restoration to office. I do not Dretend to be indifferent to office. If I were so to pretend I should not be worthy of my position here. But there are things which to every right-minded man are more precious than the possession of office, and one is the welfare of the country in which we were born and for whose affairs we are responsible. We have made great sacrifices for our convictions, but if our convictions are not accepted we have no fault to find with any one. This is a free country, and every man is welcome to his opinions. But, Sir,

I repeat that no man should be indifferent to the conditions which exist to-day, and therefore in conclusion I beg to move that the following words be added to the Address :

We regret to have to represent to Your Royal Highness that in the gracious Speech with which you have met Parliament, whilst it is admitted that business is in a depressed condition, yet there is no indication of any intention on the part of your advisers to take any steps towards relieving such a situation.


Rt. H@

I desire to associate myself with all that has been so aptly and eloquently said by my right hon. friend in extending his congratulations to the mover and the seconder of the Address. Both these hon. gentlemen have made admirable speeches, and while hon. gentlemen ont the other side of the House cannot be expected naturally to take precisely the same view as to the conduct of public affairs as that which was expressed in those speeches, nevertheless I observed with a great deal of satisfaction that the remarks of these gentlemen did in many respects meet with the approval of hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House. The mover of the address, the hon. member for York, N.B. (Mr. McLeod), has already had a distinguished career, having attained at a very early age a high position in the public life of his province, and it was with every feeling of anticipation, I am sure, that the House awaited his observations this afternoon. I entirely concur with what has been said by the leader of the Opposition in this respect: that he amply fulfilled all the expectations which had been formed of him as a parliamentary debater. So my hon. friend from the country of Bellechasse (Mr. Lavallee), of the old historic province of Quebec, has maintained the reputation of the worthy

[Sir Wilfrid LaurierJ.

race which he so eloquently represented on this occasion, and has delivered to the House this afternoon a speech which reflects credit not only upon himself, but upon his province as well.

I desire also particularly to associate myself with what has been said not only by my hon. friend the member for York, but by the right hon. gentleman who leads the Opposition, in expressing the great satisfaction of the Canadian people that Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Connaught ha3 recovered from the very serious illness from which she suffered for many months, and that she has been enabled once more to accompany His Royal Highness to this country. Those who know, as all of us, I think, do know, the keen sense of duty, which animates Their Royal Highnesses and the very great sympathy and interest which they have on all occasions exhibited in everything that pertains to the welfare of this country, must have been inspired by an especial satisfaction in knowing that Their Royal Highnesses have been enabled once more to undertake the important and often very onerous duties of the high position in this country to which they have been called. I voice, I am sure, the feeling of hon. gentlemen on both sides of the House when I express the hope that Her Royal Highness' progress to complete health and strength, such a3 she enjoyed before, may be rapid and continuous, and that their Royal Highnesses may have -and I am sure they always will have- none but the happiest memories with which to look back to the years during which they were citizens of this country. I am sure also that when at some later date they do return to their home in the British Islands, Canada and Canadians will have no warmer friends and advocates on the other side of the Atlantic than will be found in Their Royal Highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of Connaught.

My right hon. friend dwelt upon a great many matters in the course of his discursive speech; to some of these, particularly those relating to controversial politics of the great neighbouring republic, I will not follow him, because his observations in that regard do not seem to call for any special reply. He has -spoken in the first place of the delay in summoning Parliament, and he has asked for an explanation. If he wishes the fullest explanation, he should look around him and see among the hon. gentlemen on the other side of the-House who come from the different parts of this Dominion, one man, if he can, who

has not thoroughly welcomed the suggestion that Parliament should meet in January instead of in November. The suggestion has been made to me over and over again during the past two years that in this Parliament we accomplish very little indeed before the Christmas vacation; that the Christmas vacation is usually a somewhat protracted period, and that the members who come from distant parts of the country, and particularly those who come from the West and have to close their homes for the winter, are left in Ottawa for two or three or four weeks with absolutely nothing to do, awaiting the convenience of those who, like my right hon. friend, live in or near the capital, and to whom it is a matter of no inconvenience whatever that the public business should be so conducted. I venture to hope that members of this House may be inspired with a desire to expedite business, and I think that my friends from the Maritime provinces, from the West, and from the distant portions of Ontario and Quebec, will welcome the innovation upon which we have embarked this year, and will justify the Government in the course it has taken in postponing the meeting of Parliament until January.

Then my right hon. friend tried to make merry at the expense of the Government and to make some more or less caustic observations at the expense of my hon. friend the Solictor General (Mr. Meighen).

I am pleased to know that he considers the choice an excellent one, and I am also glad that he realizes that there is a very great number of men in the Liberal-Conservative party in this House who are capable of filling that oflice with honour and ability. That is absolutely true, and if all the observations of my right hon. friend were as apt and as much to the point as that particular observation I would have no fault whatever to find with him. He has referred to these gentlemen as pebbles on the beach. Fortunately we were not in the position of my right hon. friend who on five different occasions could not find any pebble on the beach on his own side of the House, because he went outside of the House to select a Minister of Justice, a Minister of Railways and Canals, a Minister of Labour, a Minister of Public Works, and last but not least a Secretary of State. Under these circumstances I am sure my right hon. friend will be disposed to congratulate the Conservative party that it is not afflicted by that unfortunate poverty of talent which was indicated by the course that the right hon. gentleman adopted on five occasions. We have an abundance of splendid

material on this side of the House, and I join with my right hon. friend in congratulating the Liberal-Conservative party of this country that it does possess in this House so splendid an abundance of the most excellent material.

My right hon. friend also found fault with the absence of the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. Foster). Whatever might be the possible detriment to the public interest which would be occasioned by the absence of the Minister of Trade and Commerce, I am very much inclined to think that my right hon. friend, in his own heart, would be very glad to see him remain absent, would be very glad not to have him here during the session at all. As a matter of fact, let me either encourage or discourage my right hon. friend, as the case may be, by informing him that the Minister of Trade and Commerce is on the ocean now and that by about next Monday he will be here ready to answer my right hon. friend on that point. The Minister of Trade and Commerce is a member of a very important commission which had its origin in a resolution passed by the Imperial Conference of 1911. The right hon. leader of the Opposition thinks that a minister of the Crown for Canada ought not to be a member of that commission. I do not concur in the view which the right hon. gentleman has expressed, because I consider it exceedingly important that a man occupying the very important and responsible portfolio of Minister of Trade and Commerce, the duties of which are especially concerned with questions of trade between the various dominions of this Empire and with the resources which exist within those dominions, should be on hand in Great Britain, in Australia, in Canada and in South Africa to make a comprehensive and close study of those conditions; and I know of no man in Canada who is more thoroughly competent to undertake the duties of a member of that very important commission, representing Canada in that behalf, than is the Hon. George E. Foster.

My right hon. friend spoke on many subjects. Among other things, he dealt with the failure in the Speech from the Throne to make any reference to the Highways Bill. I desire to say in the presence of this House and of this country that the Highways Bill, as we introduced it in two successive sessions, and as it passed the House of Commons on both those occasions, was a perfectly fair Bill which conserved the interest of every province in Canada. Further than that, I am in a position to state that the majority of the pro

vinees of Canada, representing a large majority of the people of Canada, were perfectly willing and are perfectly willing to take that Bill just as we presented it. When we first introduced that Bill in Parliament the right hon. gentleman and his friends pretended to give it a halfhearted and lukewarm support. They debated it; to a certain extent they obstructed it both in the last session and in the previous session. Notwithstanding their pretended support of some features of it, at least in the first instance, they ended their career by standing up, every one of them in his place, and voting solidly against that Bill. We placed the Bill before Parliament in what we believed to be terms perfectly fair to every province in Canada. Further than that, the Minister of Railways and Canals and myself as well gave a distinct pledge, which we kept on both occasions, that when the vote was brought down for the appropriation of a certain sum of money in aid of the highways of this country, the Parliament of Canada would be asked to make that vote in accordance with the populations of the various provinces of Canada. We made that pledge. If we did not observe that pledge, it would have been perfectly competent for hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House and for tneir friends in the Senate, when that vote was brought down, to have taken the stand that the vote and the appropriation did not do full justice to the provinces of Canada. We had no intention then or at any other time of dealing with any of the provinces otherwise than in accordance with the pledge which we then gave; but my right hon. friend, or at all events his friends in the Senate-and I understand he takes full responsibility for their action-after he and his friends had voted to defeat that Bill, took upon themselves by their majority the still greater responsibility of inserting in that Bill an amendment which the Government had rejected a year before, and which they knew the Government would certainly reject again. Therefore, notwithstanding all the efforts of my right hon. friend to escape from the responsibility of defeating that Bill, I intend to fix that responsibility upon him and upon his friends, because I say it is due to them and to them alone that a vote of $1,000,000 in the session before last and of $1,500,000 last session, has not been made available for the improvement and maintenance of the highways of this country.

At six o'clock the House took recess.

The House resumed at eight o'clock.


Robert Laird Borden (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs; President of the Privy Council)

Conservative (1867-1942)


When the House took recess at six o'clock, I was speaking of the Highways Bill and pointing out that, as the hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House had used their majority in the Senate for the purpose of defeating the Bill in two successive sessions we had decided that, until the majority of the Senate in the course of events comes in accord with the voice and will of the people of this country, it was useless and undesirable to take up the time of the House further with it; and therefore at this session we did not propose to introduce the Highways Bill.

There are at least four, and perhaps more, important measures which the Government has proposed to Parliament, and which the Liberal majority in the Senate has seen fit to reject or to encumber to such an extent with amendments that we could not accept them. I need only mention the Highways Bill, in two successive sessions, the Tariff Commission Bill in the session before last, the Branch Lines Bill, of which I shall say a few words in a moment, and the Naval Aid Bill of last year, of which I shall also speak.

The situation of this country with regard to its Upper Chamber is somewhat peculiar. Canada has less control over a majority in the Senate which puts itself in opposition to the popular will than any other dominion of the empire that I know of to-day. The colony of Newfoundland with one twenty-fifth of the population of the Dominion of Canada has infinitely more effective control over a situation of that kind than this Dominion. If friends of hon. gentlemen opposite, appointed during their tenure of office and before the will of the people was declared at the last election, are disposed to force upon us the question of the constitution of the Senate and the nature of appointments thereto- well, .speaking for myself, and I think speaking for the great majority of the people of this country, we are ready to accept that issue.

The Branch Lines Bill of last year is a notable illustration of what I have just now alluded to. A resolution was introduced into this House by my colleague the Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Cochrane). The resolution was very broad in its terms, and, as he and I decided after its introduction and after some criticism had been made of it, that it was too wide in its terms, I myself drafted a modified

form of resolution which I took informally across the floor of this House and submitted to hon. gentlemen on the other side. I submitted it to my hon. friend the exMinister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Graham), the hon. member for the city of St. John (Mr. Pugsley), the hon. member for Westmorland (Mr. Emmerson), and the hon. member for Rouville (Mr. Lemieux), all hon. gentlemen who had taken part in that debate, and every one of them without exception told me that the resolution in the amended terms in which I proposed it was absolutely acceptable to them. The only dissenting voice, and that only with regard to one minor feature of the Bill, was the voice of the' hon. member for Westmorland, who thought that the power given by that proposed resolution to the Minister of Railways and Canals to build a line not exceeding twenty-five miles in length was too great a power. I was about to consent to modify it when another hon. gentleman on the other side, the hon. member for Cape Breton and Victoria (Mr. McKenzie) strenuously objected to any change, and desired the resolution to remain as it was, and it did remain as it was, and the Bill founded upon it went through this House without one dissenting vqice. My right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition was in his seat, as ' Hansard ' will show, when the Bill passed this House, and he did not raise his voice in opposition to it. The Liberal majority in the Senate saw fit so to mangle that Bill with changes and amendments that it became absolutely useless for the purpose for which it was intended. It came back here and I asked that those amendments should not be assented to. [DOT] To my astonishment the leader of the Opposition stood up in his place and defended the action of his friends in the Senate, although the Bill in the form m which it left the House of Commons had been unanimously assented to not only by hon. members on this side but by hon. gentlemen on the other side of the House as well. So-the Bill failed to carry because we could not accept the Senate amendments. And so it was with the Tariff Commission Bill.

My right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition has referred to the Naval Aid Bill, and I desire to say a few words in explaining the action of the Government in that regard. Let me review the situation in a few words. Firmly convinced that the conditions disclosed in the Admiralty memorandum demanded immediate and effective aid from Canada, the Government, in accordance with its mandate from the

people introduced in this Parliament on the 5th day of December, 1912, the Naval Aid Bill by resolution. That Bill provided for the construction of three battleships of the most modem and powerful type to be placed at the disposal of His Majesty for the common defence of the empire and to be subject to recall upon reasonable notice if and when the Canadian people should decide to establish one or more fleet units or other distinctive naval forces. The measure was debated at great length in this House and was persistently and defiantly obstructed. It did not pass this House until the rules had been so amended as to prevent such obstruction. Eventually the Bill was rejected in the Upper Chamber by senators appointed by the late Government previously to its defeat in 1911. The measure proposed by the Government created a profound impression not only within this empire, but throughout the world. There is little doubt that if the Bill had passed, the determination of Canada thus expressed would have constituted an important influence in bringing about a most desirable cessation in the rivalry of armaments. The partisan considerations and misguided influences which occasioned the perverse and maladroit action of the Senate were not realized or understood either within the empire or throughout the world. In certain important quarters the Senate's action was welcomed with rejoicing as a clear indication that in providing for the common defence of the empire upon the high seas the mother country must stand alone so far as Canada is concerned, and that this Dominion must be regarded not as a strength but as a weakness to the empire in time of peril. That the impression created by the Senate's action was profoundly unfortunate and mischievous is evidenced by many comments in great European journals. As an illustration one quotation must suffice, although many might be given. The quotation to which I allude is from the Hamburger Nachrichten of June 5, 1913:-

Whatever may be decided upon later, the decision of the Canadian Senate means at any rate a heavy moral and material loss for the defence of the empire.

I heard, a moment ago, some gentlemen opposite cheering the Senate's action; Would they still cheer in face of that? Well, we are at least glad to know their appreciation of the duty of this country to tne empire. (Reading):

Whatever may be decided upon later, the actual decision of the Canadian Senate means at any rate a heavy moral and material loss for

progress in the past two thousand years. I trust that the day is rapidly drawing near when differences between the nations may be settled by appeal to some great tribunal established under international authority, and so constituted that its decisions will command unquestioning respect and obedience. But, until that day dawns, and while w'ar is still the last court of appeal between the nations, we cannot forget that a great heritage has been committed to our keeping, and that we are the trustees of its safety, not for ourselves alone, but for those who are yet to be born.

The Government are naturally most desirous that the aid which we proposed last year, under conditions of urgency and need, and which we still propose to bring in due course to the common defence of the empire should be so proffered or given as not to prejudice or retard any international agreement for the cessation of battleship construction. When we are in a position to press the Naval Aid Bill to a final and satisfactory conclusion < in the Senate, it will be our duty to consult with the Imperial Government respecting these grave and important considerations. If it should then appear that, by any naval arrangement entered into or about to be entered into by the great powers, a restriction or diminution of the present lamentable rivalry in armaments could be brought about, we should always be ready, until our ships have actually been begun, to review the situation so far as these proposals are concerned; and if a general cessation or temporary suspension in the building of great ships of war were at any time to be seriously entertained, Canada would gladly participate in such a desirable result. Otherwise, we should proceed in due course with the construction of the three ships, holding it to be our duty, under the conditions disclosed last year, and for reasons then elaborated with great fullness, to bring this assistance as speedily as possible to the great purpose of our common defence and security.

Our opponents, especially in the Senate, have taken the ground that our temporary proposals of last year, although not embodying a permanent policy in any respect, ought not to be undertaken without an appeal to the people, but that a permanent naval policy might properly be formulated and carried out without such an appeal. We entirely dissent from that remarkable and unjustifiable view'. So far

as a permanent policy of naval defence is concerned, I gave my pledge to the people, on more than one occasion previous to the last election, that it vmuld be submitted to them at a general election before it should effectively be undertaken. That pledge still holds good, and faith will be kept with the people in that regard.

Now', my right hon. friend, in the course of his remarks, w'ent into some matters upon which I do not desire to detain the House at any length. He spoke of the good relations between the British Empire and the German Empire. I am glad to know that they are good relations. It is my fervent hope and wish that those relations may always continue to be as satisfactory as they are at present; but, as I pointed out last year, the destinies of the world are sometimes influenced by the mere fact that predominant naval power does exist and can be utilized in one quarter or another, and I venture to think that if the right hon. gentleman will look at the observations made by the First Lord of the Admiralty in the British House of Commons on the 5th day of June, 1913, and on the 17th day of July, 1913, he will lind that his view as to the necessity of maintaining and even increasing the strength of the naval forces of this empire is not borne out by the view of the British Admiralty. Mr. Churchill, in the observations which I have under my hand, but which I will not weary the House with repeating here to-night, takes it to be the duty of the British Government to make good that which was lost to the Empire by the unfortunate action of the Senate. That is the situation, so far as I understand as it exists to-day.

Just one other observation with regard to my right hon. friend. He has on various occasions during the recess urged that the people of this country should not embark on any project of aiding in the naval defence of the Empire; and he put the question of the high cost of living, I think, against dreadnoughts in the speech he made at Hamilton. He deplores, and his organs deplore, the establishment of any armament trust in Canada. Well, who was it that, last year in this Parliament, advocated the establishment of an armament trust? If I mistake not, it was the right hon. gentleman who has since made these interesting speeches in various places throughout the country. Who was it that last year desired this country to embark on a permanent naval policy which within the next ten or twelve years would have cost this

country at least $150,000,000? And who was it who desired that this should be done without giving to the people of Canada any opportunity to express ttfeir views on the subject? Why, it was my right lion, friend and his supporters on the other side, and their partisans in the Senate who desired to take that course. If there is any advocate, any strenuous advocate, of the establishment of an armament trust in Canada, that advocate is to be found in the person of my right hon. friend who leads the Opposition. But I have heard that in various parts of the country my right hon. friend was not quite so explicit as he was in his speech in this House. I did not observe that in his speeches in the county of Chateauguay he put that policy in the very forefront. If, however, I am mistaken in my appreciation -of the course which he took in that campaign, I will sit down in order that he may [DOT]correct me.

My right hon. friend seemed to be distressed at the condition of affairs in connection with the terminals at Quebec. I had the honour and pleasure of speaking at a banquet in the city of Quebec a few months ago, and I went into the question somewhat fully at that time. I regret that my right hon. friend is so much under a misapprehension as to some matters on which he has spoken to-day. He has taken it upon himself to say that the management of the [DOT]Grand Trunk Pacific Railway Company are not in accord with this Government in regard to certain changes that have been made. I would like him to state his authority for that declaration. I am informed by my hon. friend the Minister of Railways and Canals (Mr. Cochrane) that that statement is not stamped with the hall mark of accuracy.

Sir WILFRID LAUR1ER: I did not say it was so. I said that no information has been given to show that the Grand Trunk Pacific Company had agreed to the changes.


January 19, 1914