February 22, 1916

?

Some hon. MEMBERS:

Three-quarters.

Topic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

Edward Walter Nesbitt

Liberal

Mr. NESBITT:

One-half anyway of the

profits made by suppliers of munitions and various supplies to the Imperial Government and to our own Militia Department. I believe the country would have endorsed that. Why did the minister not get at these men who have made enormous profits out of the supply of munitions and not at the companies that are doing the regular business of this country? Let me give an illustration. At the end of their fiscal year the directors of a company call in their shareholders and if they have made any money, and if they are honest, they distribute it to their shareholders, who should get it, because, after all, they are the owners. Now we go back to 1914, after these corporations have distributed their profits, if they made any. Do you mean to tell me that you are going to make these men go and borrow the money to pay up the war tax from 1914? I was the other day at a meeting of an insurance company, which gave the whole of its surplus profits, $50,000, to the Patriotic Fund-a Canadian insurance company. I had the pleasure of moving the resolution. Do you mean to tell me that you are going to make that company pay as taxes $12,500 of that sum which they gave to the Patriotic Fund out of their reserve?

Topic:   THE BUDGET.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

Was that a life insurance company?

Topic:   THE BUDGET.
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LIB

Edward Walter Nesbitt

Liberal

Mr. NESBITT:

No, it was a fire insurance company, the Gore Mutual Company, and a credit to this country. I repeat, do you mean that that company should pay as taxes $12,500 of the amount which it gave

64*

to the Patriotic Fund? So far as I can see, that would be the result of this legislation.

Now, I have an old grievance to ventilate. I want to bring to the attention of the Minister of Finance the fact that he is again giving a premium to insurance companies which do business in this country without a license. He is letting companies like the New England Mutuals, Reciprocal Underwriters, and American Lloyds go scot free. I have no doubt that there are some German companies still doing business in this country, and yet the Minister of Finance practically gives them a premium for not taking out a license. I think that every company doing business in this country ought to be forced to take out a license. I do not care who they are; I would put them all on the same level, and then there would be no grumbling. But these outside companies are not taxed anything. They come to this country and do business, and are not asked to pay a cent for the benefit of this country, while the licensed companies pay for their licenses, and will be taxed under this Bill, as they were taxed under last year's Act.

I would like to speak for a moment with regard to immigration. The Estimates for immigration have not yet been passed, and perhaps I will have an opportunity of discussing the subject at greater length then. But I have a very fixed idea that if there is one branch of the Government, the Estimates for which should not have been reduced, it is the Immigration Department, because now is the time to get ready. But the Government have reduced the immigration Estimates by $1,500,000, I think, despite the fact that now is the time to prepare for the immigration that is bound to come to this country if we are not taxed too high. I hope the Minister of Finance will see to it that we are not, although it looks very doubtful in view of this Budget. We have gone all wrong in our immigration- policy. We bring immigrants here, men and women, and dump them down at the landing place, and do not look after them. We ought to make some arrangement with the provinces by which these immigrants could be taken to-suitable places and educated to a certain extent in farm work. There could be large farms in the provinces where these immigrants could get a smattering, at least, of farm work. Most of them, when they come out, are of no use for farming, and the ordinary farmer will not engage them, and educate them, and pay them at the same time. We ought to change entirely

our system of dealing with immigrants, and that is one reason why I desired to discuss this subject. But I will take the opportunity later on.

Let me say just one word with reference to what my hon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) spoke of so splendidly thle other evening- the patronage system. I am not here to accuse the Government of bestowing patronage in connection with the war orders;

I do not know that they did, but they say that where there is smoke there is sure to be fire, of which I got definite proof at the old Parliament buildings the other night. But I believe there is absolute corruption in connection with the system. I would certainly join with- my hon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce, and with any other member of this House who will rise and condemn the patronage system in every shape and form. Personally, I never had any patronage to dispense in the riding which I represent; I always try to treat everybody exactly the same, no matter what their politics or religion may be. Regardless of politics or religion, regardless of creed, we in this country are willing to support the Government in any reasonable expenditures required for the upkeep of the army, and in order to win victory for our arms, and for those of the Empire; but we decidedly say that these expenditures should be reduced by the Government to a minimum. I am not going to attempt to indicate the various ways in which they could be reduced-it would take me all night to do so. The Government represent the people, and they are accountable to the people. If they have not a system which enables them to know where the leakages occur they should at once organize some such system with the view of cutting off all leakages, and all patronage, because that is the curse of the whole business. The Government should .-[DOT]tart now to Teduce to the very lowest minimum the expenditures in connection with the various departments, and they can do it easily. There must be hundreds of people employed whom it is not necessary to emploj in the various departments of the Government, and there must be hunirods and thousands of items that could be reduced without any hurt to the country. I say to you, Mt. Speaker, that it is the duty of this Government to meet the wishes of the people on this point, and 1 _ bel;eve the people will be perfectly willing tu bear any reasonable expenditures neces-

sary to carry the war to a successful issue. But there will be grumbling, and certainly there should be grumbling, over the fact that in four years our ordinary expenditure has jumped from $87,000,000 to $158,000,000. Take it at the minister's own estimate, $135,000,000; why the whole thing is absurd. People would not believe it possible if they did not have it in black and white before them.

There was one point raised by the hon. member for North Simcoe (Mr. Currie) regarding which I would like to say one word. He said that the nickel industry in Canada was controlled by Germany. I know some officers of the nickel corporation, and I know that there is not a human being in Germany who has any control, or who has anything to do with the Canadian nickel interests. I think the ministers know that as well as I do. I have been told by officers of the nickel company that they would be perfectly willing to have any investigation that might be thought desirable to clear away any doubts as to German control. .

As it is practically six o'clock, if I started to talk further on this iniquitous, retroactive resolution that my hon. friend has introduced, I am afraid that I would have to finish after dinner; so, I will now, stop, as I have told the House frankly and plainly my views on the proposed Budget.

At six o'clock, the House took recess.

The House resumed at eight o'clock.

Topic:   THE BUDGET.
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PRIVATE BILLS.

THIRD READINGS.


Bill No. 3, respecting the Burrard Inlet Tunnel and Bridge Company.-Mr. Stevens. Bill No. 4, respecting the Canadian Northern Railway Company.-Mr. Bradbury. Bill No. 7, respecting the Farnham and Granby Railway Company of Canada.-Mr. Douglas. Bill No. 14, respecting the Central Western Canada Railway Company.-Mr. Green. Bill No. 16, respecting the Quebec, Montreal and Southern Railway Company.- Mr. Lemieux.


CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.


The House in Committee on Private Bills, Mr. Rhodes in the Chair. Bill No. 13, respecting the Canadian Pacific Railway Company-Mr. R. B. Bennett- in Commitee. On section 4-issue of consolidated debenture stock or preferred stock:


CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

I think the wording of this section is reasonably clear. Hon. gentlemen may be aware that in Great Britain the principle proposed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer was that securities and stocks might be deposited with or sold to the Treasury. The intention was that such securities or stocks might be availed of by way of security for loans made in New York, or loans negotiated in New York, or sold upon the New York market. This Bill provides that the debenture stock of the 'Canadian Pacific Railway Company, which has been issued in sterling, may, with the consent of the holders, be issued in currency. It would then be available for deposit, and for use on this side of the Atlantic.

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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Section agreed to, and Bill reported, read the third time, and passed. Bill No. 15, respecting the Pacific Northern and Omineca Railway Company-Mr. Green -in 'Committee.


CON

Robert Francis Green

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GREEN:

This Bill was allowed to

stand yesterday, the point having been raised that in section 1, it was provided that the company might commence and complete the road within five years, no special time being fixed for commencement. So I have drafted the ordinary clause that is inserted in all Bills, providing that the railway may be commenced within two years and finished within five years. I move that section 1 of the Bill as it stands be struck out and this inserted in lieu thereof.

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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LIB

James McCrie Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS:

I note that in the description the expression is used, "Edmonton in the Northwest Territories". I would suggest that that should read, "Edmonton, in the province of Alberta."

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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CON

Robert Francis Green

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GREEN:

I do not know that it would affect it particularly, for there is only one Edmonton.

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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LIB

James McCrie Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS:

But there is a Northwest Territories north of Edmonton.

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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CON

Robert Francis Green

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GREEN:

I will be glad if the chairman will change it to read: "Edmonton,

in the province of Alberta."

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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CON

William Thomas White (Minister of Finance and Receiver General)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir THOMAS WHITE:

This section

covers a rather lengthy description of a great deal of which does not appear in the Bill before us. Was this description before the Railway Committee?

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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CON

Robert Francis Green

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. GREEN:

Yes, the section is as passed by the Railway Committee, except that it is provided that the road shall be commenced within two years and completed within five years.

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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LIB

James McCrie Douglas

Liberal

Mr. DOUGLAS:

I think that the words "or near" which appear as applied to Edmonton, should be struck out. It should read, " at Edmonton," not, " at or near Edmonton."

Topic:   CONSIDERED IN COMMITTEE-THIRD READINGS.
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CON

February 22, 1916