April 8, 1914

LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

My hon. friend can give that information to the House if he sees fit. He is probably a great deal better posted in that respect than I am. I do not happen to know very much about hogs. We do not export many from the West and I am not familiar with the figures. But my hon. friends opposite, for some months past, have been heard saying to the people of the West: You do not need reciprocity now, you have practically got it because you can send your cattle over to the United States. Let me tell the Minister of Finance and every hon. gentleman opposite that this is very far from the truth. We have a free market for our cattle, and see what it means-a dollar a hundred at least on the price for every farmer in the West for his steers, but the artisans and the consumers in the cities are suffering on account of that. Under reciprocity corresponding advantages should occur, but under the present arrangement, while the farmer gets more for his cattle, the artisans in the cities who are working on half time are paying more for their beef, and they are not getting the fruit, vegetables or anything else that would have come in free under reciprocity to counteract the increased price they are paying for their beef. Under reciprocity a certain quantity of eggs, butter and other farm products would have come in. Why should we not get those things? We cannot get those things now from our neighbours without paying duty. They are coming in, as a matter of fact, and we are paying the duty. They always come in and they always will come in. Why not take off the duties and give the people a chance to get cheaper food? .

Let me draw your attention, Mr. Speaker, to the question of oats; and this will he interesting, I am sure, to my hon. friends from the West who sit upon the other side of the House. The duty on oats going into the United States prior to the 6th October last was 12 cents a bushel. Practically no oats were then going into the United States. On the 6th October the duty was cut down to 6 cents a bushel. Shortly after that time I was up on the Manitoba and Northwestern line, at Saltcoats, Yorkton and other places, and while there I met several grain dealers and they told me that immediately the duty was lowered in the United States they had an influx of American buyers. Prior to the 6th October the price of oats at Saltcoats, Yorkton, and different points in that vicinity, was 22 cents a bushel at the elevator. The moment American buyers came in they advanced the price to 28 cents a bushel and then paid 6 cents duty. From the 6th October to the 31st December over 20,000,000 bushels of Canadian oats went into the United States and paid 6 cents a bushel duty. Thus $1,200,000 was taken out of the pockets of the western farmers that might have been left there if we had had reciprocity. With reference to flax and barley the condition is much worse. What we have now is not reciprocity. I heard one hon. gentleman on the other side of the House saying yesterday that they would be delighted to contest another election on the question of reciprocity. I want to say that he would not be half as delighted as we would be to contest an election on reciprocity.

Some hon. MEMBERS : Oh, oh.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

I would say: Welcome

the day, welcome the hour, when the question is submitted again as it was last time, because then Laurier will return to power.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON
LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

The hon. member for

Souris (Mr. Schaffner) had better cinch that senatorship, because he had better not risk an election again in Souris.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

Frederick Laurence Schaffner

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SCHAFFNER:

I will take my

chance.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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?

An hon. MEMBER:

It will be a long

one.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

My hon. friend will take his chance. Of course, he says he represents eighty-five per cent of the voters. I do not see how he does that on sixty-two of a majority, but that is his affair and not 1601

mine. My advice to the hon. gentleman is to get a sure grip on that senatorship, because then he will be in a much better position to explain to the farmers of the West why he voted against free wheat and against free implements. The hon. gentleman would be more comfortable with a seat in the red chamber than in an attempt to secure the votes of the farmers of Souris another time. Therefore, my advice to the hon. gentleman is to get a good, firm grip on that senatorship.

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CON

Frederick Laurence Schaffner

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SCHAFFNER:

I vote for a Government that has done ninety-five per cent of the things the farmers of the West have asked for since they came into power, when the late Government did absolutely nothing along that line.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

I may tell my hon. friend that every local Tory member in the province of Manitoba voted for-free wheat, and I will also tell him that he cannot go into his constituency and get any farmers' organization to endorse what he says. Now, enough of free implements-

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CON

David Henderson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HENDERSON:

I thought the hon. gentleman whs getting sick of it.

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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

I have undertaken not to be too long, or I could give you a good deal more. I have it lying all around here. I want now to say a word upon the question of immigration. The Minister of Finance referred to it, but he did not tell you that during the year 1912-13, the first time for many years back, there was a greater emigration from Canada to the United States than there was immigration from the United States to Canada. More people went from Canada to the United States in

the year 1912-13 than came into Canadafrom the United States. I can give myhon. friend the figures for the last fiveyears: Year. From FromCanada to United StatesUnited States. to Canada.1907-8 .. .. 58,000 58,0001908-9 . . .. 84,000 59,0001909-10 .. .. 94,000 103,0001910-11 .... 105,000 121,0001911-12 .. .. 107,000 133,0001912-13 .... 143,000 139,000In the year 1912-13 our hon. friends on

the other side of the House were mismanaging things in Canada, and we very soon had a return to the old condition of affairs that existed when they went out of power in 1896. The result was that 143,006 people left Canada for the United States, while only 139,000 people came from the

United States to Canada. The results for the years 1913-14, for which we have not yet the figures, will be much worse, and for the year 1914-15, upon which we have just entered, they will be worse still. There is no question about that; you only have to keep your eyes open to see that.

The class of immigration coming into the country has changed also. In 1911-12 the immigrants from continental Europe represented 23.2 per cent of the total immigration, while in 1913-14 (11 months) the proportion was 35.2 per cent, or an increase of 12 per cent from continental Europe. In 1912-13 American immigration was 34.5 per cent, and in 1913-14 (11 months) it was 25.7 per cent, a reduction of between 8 and 9 per cent in the volume of American immigration.

So, you see that the defeat of reciprocity by hon. gentlemen opposite is bringing about these results, and it is going to be bad for the West. That is a matter that the Minister of Finance did not explain.

My hon. friend the Minister of Finance threw out as a sort of sop to the farmers the statement that this Government were going to devote their efforts to getting better rates to compensate them for not getting a greater reduction in duties on agricultural implements. At the same time the Minister of Finance knows that, since he came into power less than three years ago, it costs the western farmer from six to eight cents a bushel more to send his wheat from the West to the Liverpool market. If his efforts during the next three years are productive to the same extent as his efforts have been in the past three years, I do not think the western farmer will have very much to thank the Government for.

There is another thing that I would like to point out to my hon. friend the Minister of Finance. Suppose, Mr. Speaker, that the cotton manufacturers, we will say, came to my hon. friend the Minister of Finance and made this statement to him. Suppose the cotton manufacturers, or any other manufacturers, were to say to the Minister of Finance: We have been enjoying protection for a long time, but it is now more or less circumscribing our markets and we have come to the conclusion that the duty, which was put on in our favour, should be taken off forthwith, would not the Minister of Finance'at once take off the duty on such articles ? Would he not reply: All right, surely the man who makes the goods ought to know whether he wants protection or not; I will put that article at once on the free list.

But now the wheat growers of Canada have come to the Finance Minister and to the Government, and they have said: We do not want the duty on wheat; we do not want protection on what we grow; we are satisfied to meet the world in open competition. And the reply of the Minister of Finance to the farmers is: You cannot be trusted to know what is good for you; we cannot give you what you ask; we will have first to consult the millers and the railways. So the Minister of Finance turns a deaf ear to the farmers, but he turns a mighty quick-hearing .ear to the voice of the railway manager, and the voice of the manufacturer. Does the Minister of Finance think that the Canadian farmer cannot size up what is going on just as well as can the Canadian manufacturer ? If the hon. gentleman has any belief of that kind, he is entirely mistaken. I have dozens and. scores of farmers in my constituency who can argue out public questions in a systematic and forcible and sensible manner; men who are the equals of any in this House, men who are much more competent to treat of public questions than I am, and such men the Minister of Fiiiance cannot hoodwink. Make no mistake about it; the farmers of to-day are not what they were fifty years ago, and if their demands are not paid attention to by the Government in power, they will make it uncomfortable for those who deliberately set their requests aside, while at the same time they hasten to comply with the requests of the manufacturers and the railway companies.

The Minister of Finance told us that Canada was the second best customer the United States had, and that Canada only ranked fifth in selling goods to the United States. Why not equalize that; why not let us pay for in kind what we are now paying for in cash? Surely that would be to the advantage of everybody.

In connection with the cheapening of freight rates, to which my hon. friend has referred, I wish to say that in my judgment this present Government has deliberately and with malice aforethought degraded the Grand Trunk Pacific, at the instigation, or at least in the interests, of the Canadian Pacific railway.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

The hon. gentleman is out of order in imputing motives.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

If you say I am out of order, Mr. Speaker, I shall not question your ruling just now, but I certainly fail to see wherein I am out of order. However, I accept your view.

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CON

Thomas Simpson Sproule (Speaker of the House of Commons)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. SPEAKER:

The rule says it is not permissible to attribute improper motives to the Government or to members of the House. To say that a thing was done out of malice aforethought is not a proper expression.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

John Gillanders Turriff

Liberal

Mr. TURRIFF:

All right, Mr. Speaker;

I withdraw those words. I would not like to say anything that is not in accordance with the rules of the House, but I will say this: that the Grand Trunk Pacific has been deliberately degraded by the Government, and that the only other company that can benefit by it is the Canadian Pacific railway, and the men who are to suffer by it are the western farmers, because the Grand Trunk Pacific, degraded as it is, cannot carry the products of the farmers as cheaply as if the road had been completed up to the standard originally intended.

There are other things I should have liked to refer to, such as lumber and cement, but the time at my disposal having expired, I hope to deal with them on another occasion. I trust that the next time the farmers of Canada come to see the Minister of Finance, they will get more consideration than they have obtained up to the present time, judging by the Budget speech delivered on Monday last by the Minister of Finance.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

William Foster Cockshutt

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. W. F. COCKSHUTT (Brantford):

Mr. Speaker, I shall have occasion to refer to a few of the remarks of my hon. friend (Mr. Turriff) later on. The hon. gentleman assigned me an hour and a half to dispose of him, but I hope to be able to deal with his remarks in much less time than that. The Budget speech of the Minister of Finance (Hon. W. T. White) this year has been looked forward to with more than ordinary interest, and I think I may say, without flattery to the hon. minister, that he has more than fulfilled the expectations the people of Canada have of him. The air has been materially cleared by the pronouncement made by the hon. gentleman on financial matters, and in masterly style he has dealt with every phase of the commercial and financial life of our country. The question of our national finances has been ably dealt with by the Finance Minister and by the hon. member for St. Antoine (Mr. Ames), so that, in the time at my disposal, I shall endeavour to treat of other features of our financial and commercial life.

The clean-cut and well defined line which

the Minister of Finance has drawn between the political parties in Canada, in reference to the protective tariff, will carry assurance to the minds of all Canadians, and in declaring that the Conservative party shall stand by Canadian industries, whether agricultural industries or manufacturing industries, the hon. gentleman has enunciated a policy in the best interests of the Dominion. When the policy announced by the Minister of Finance in his speech is fully understood, and when his speech has been read, as I believe it will be from end to end of the Dominion, his utterances will bring reassurance to the minds of those who may have been panic-stricken by the vagaries of hon. gentlemen opposite. The immediate outlook, as foreshadowed by the Minister of Finance, though not as good as it has been in some years,-is still very encouraging. The country as a whole is sound; but we have, I am sorry to say, several legacies left over by the late Government that have imposed tremendous responsibility upon the people of Canada, and very onerous duties on the Minister of Finance to provide for them. I am safe in saying that no Government ever existed in the Dominion which left a greater legacy of debt and encumbrances than did the late Laurier Administration. .

I regret' that the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Macdonald) is not in the House at the moment. He bewailed that a settled gloom was spreading over the Dominion of Canada. I think those were his words. Where are the good times gone, he bemoaned, that were in vogue during the Laurier regime? How is it that depression is spreading over the land and you cannot see a ray of sunshine anywhere? This, if it were true, would be a very great reflection upon the gentleman whom he supported in power for the past sixteen years. Let us ask for a moment what constitutes good times; what is the sum and substance of good times. Is it to pick up on the streets money that you have not earned? Is it to get a contract at twice as much as should be paid for it? Is it to have a cinch in supplying some Government department with goods that are not worth 50 cents on the dollar for what should be supplied? If such be the case, then certainly we have had good times during the past sixteen years, because at no other time has money been scattered about in the Dominion of Canada without

receiving returns for it in the way that it has been by the late Government. I am sorry to make so severe a statement as that, but I am speaking exactly what I believe as a business man when I say that there have been millions-it would almost startle me if I were to mention the figures, after hearing that $40,000,000 had been squandered in one enterprise-of the money of the country paid out, for what? For nothing that is a tangible asset to-day, and for nothing that can ever hope to earn a dividend for the people of Canada.

Take the railway that I have just mentioned, conceived, as I believe, in political jobbery and carried on with extravagance and political iniquity, so that to-day we are face to face with a report that says that upwards of $40,000,000 of the public "money has been spent in that extravagant way. My right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition (Sir Wilfrid Laurierj, a gentleman whom I respect very highly, stated that he admitted that mistakes might have been made, but that anything that had been misspent had been the result of a mistake.

I only wish I could accept those words at their face value; but I am sorry to say, after looking into the report and after reviewing very carefully the course of my hon. friends opposite for the sixteen years they were in power, I cannot accept that -statement at all. That railway, which was built as a monument to my right hon. friend and to the Dominion of Canada, was not a mistake according to his own judgment, in the first place. He went into it with his eyes open. Why do I say it was not a mistake? Let my right hon. friend refer for a moment to the speech of his then Minister of Railways, the Hon. A. G. Blair. Let him read that speech from beginning to end, and tell me whether or not he was warned that he was embarking upon an enterprise that was of the very worst character in every way, both political and national. What did the Hon. A. G. Blair say? He told these gentlemen that their figures were all fake; that their $13,000,000 and their $61,000,000 were false. He said: I

cannot support a iproposition like that before my fellow members. I will resign my seat in the Government and'step out rather than tell the people of Canada that a railway can be built for $13,000,000, or $61,000,000, that I know is going to cost $120,000,000. All credit to the Hon. A. G. Blair, who stepped out of the Government and said:

I refuse to be a party to a Government that

launches a scheme on the Dominion of Canada, knowing that it is going to cost five to ten times more tUan it was said it would, and that, in the building of it,

* takes none of the ordinary business precautions to see that a dollar's worth is got for a dollar. The whole thing from start to finish was carried on with the idea that, no matter how much money we put into it, the Grand Trunk Pacific has to pay 3 per cent on the cost and the country cannot lose. Thus they went on and spent that vast sum of money -in an enterprise, a large part of which to-day hangs in the balance as to whether it will pay in the next fifteen to twenty-five years-in an enterprise vastly in advance of its time, vastly in advance of all the requirements of the eastern section of the country through which it runs, and according to the best information we have in railway circles, entirely unnecessary in so far as the section from Levis to Moncton is concerned, because it- parallels a road that is already short of traffic. No wonder that good times, according to their measure, prevailed in the estimation of hon. gentlemen, opposite. Can good times consist simply in making money rapidly, regardless of how it is made? Oan good times consist in a party throwing money around to its friends without receiving value back in the interest of the country? If such can be done, certainly they had good times ; but, as I understand good times, they are a very different matter.

Let hon. gentlemen opposite look back over their career and see some of the deeds they committed during those so-called good times. I think my hon. friends, if they review their whole course, will say: We

did something more than make mistakes; we condoned offences that never should have been condoned. If there is one fault I have to lay to my right hon. friend the leader of the Opposition-and I am sorry to have to lay this charge against him-it is that he was too fond of power to punish the wrongdoer in his own party, and, on account of that, he was led into committing many offences against the public interest. That is a strong statement to make, but let me recall two or three of those mistakes. Let me refer to the North Atlantic Trading Company, a creation of my hon. friends opposite, which got from $300,000 to $500,000 from the people of this country with no value received. Let me refer to the cruise oi the Neptune, which went up among the Esquimaux and converted some of the

heathen to the ways of the Laurier Government and spent some thousands of dollars of Government money in visiting the wilds of the North and brought back a tale of rascality the like of which was never before unravelled in the history of this country. Let me recall a similar matter, which shows a spirit that should never have entered this House-which took place only in the last Parliament, when Mr. Lanctot, the former member for Richelieu, painted his house at Sorel and fixed it up in good shape at the Government's expense. Small matter, you say; but often small matters show which way the wind blows. That was proved up to the hilt and admitted by himself, and his cheque was sent to, cover it after he was caught, and not before. Good times for the hon. member for Richelieu; very good times. The lamentable part of it was that, instead of meting out to that hon. gentleman the punishment that was due, the Liberal party, headed by the right hon. gentleman opposite and supported by every man behind him, whitewashed this gentleman from head to foot and gave him a character to go free. Does that constitute a high ideal, either commercial or political, to set up before the people of Canada? I do not call that good times; I call that evil days. If there is one charge against my right hon. friend that stands out and that will stand out in the history of Canada, it is that, under the Laurier Government, political morality and commercial morality sank to the lowest ebb at which it has ever been since Confederation. If hon. gentlemen on this side will take warning by what has happened on the other, we shall be glad; but if we should harden our hearts and run astray, as hon. gentlemen opposite did, for any part I hope I shall be lashed rather than sit in this House and vote through such rascalities as those I have mentioned in order that we may stay in power.

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Subtopic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB
CON

William Foster Cockshutt

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. COCKSHUTT:

I never heard of any Prince Albert deal.

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LIB
CON

William Foster Cockshutt

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. COCKSHUTT:

No Prince Albert

land deal has ever come before the House so far as I know. With regard to land deals, I may say that mighty little land was left to deal in after my hon. friends went out of power. If my hon. friend had applied to the hon. member for Assiniboia

(Mr. Turriff) the remark which he has made, he might have obtained some information on the point; the hon. member for Assiniboia could tell him a thing or two about land deals. The Saskatchewan Valley Land Company and other such matters are still fresh in the public memory. Although I have mentioned a few scandals,

I have touched only the fringe of them, as the .hon. member for Assiniboia knows full weli, though he was so (busy with implements that he did not have time to touch upon the land deals of the late Government.

I should think that my hon. friend, in talking so much about implements and advocating their free importation into this country, should have had in mind the one implement that his party imported in connection with the deal of which I have spoken. Our Finance Minister has had to pay $12,000,000 for that implement already. Land deals certainly came on thick and fast during the time the late Administration held office.

I have mentioned this in order to draw to the attention of the people to the difference between the two parties in this respect. So far as the practical work of the country is concerned, this Government has been in power about thTee years. We are nearing the end of the third session of Parliament. We have the financial statements; we know what the Government has done in the matter of expenditure. Have any hon. gentlemen opposite charged that even $100 has been wrongfully taken from the treasury since 1911 by the powers that be? If they have, I have not heard anything about it. This ' is the great difference between the two parties of the day, and I trust that the Finance Minister, in whose honour I have the highest confidence, will continue the same straight course that has been pursued in the two and a half years during which this Government has been in ipower.

Let me give our friends opposite a piece of history. It is not always pleasing to Conservatives to remember this, but ^ I think it will help to bring out the point I am making. Between the years 1872 and 1874 we had what was called the Pacific scandal, in which Sir John A. Macdonald, probably the greatest statesman Canada has ever seen, was the central figure. It was charged that he received a subscription of $25,000 from Sir Hugh Allan in order that he might hand the contract for this railway over to him. In the year 1874 the Sir John A. Macdonald Government was condemned and punished by the people of Canada-turned out of office and relegated

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April 8, 1914