March 9, 1921

UNION

Sydney Chilton Mewburn

Unionist

Hon. S. C. MEWBURN (East Hamilton) :

Mr. Speaker, I am sure the English-speaking members on this side deeply appreciate the hon. member's motion, the purpose of which is to enlighten them in regard to the French speeches in Hansard. He also, by a genial touch, disclosed the inability, which we must admit, of hon. members on this side to read or speak the French language. In these days of supposed strict economy, might I venture to suggest that the hon. member should to-morrow bring in a motion to do away with Hansard altogether. I do not know whether it would be acceptable to the House, but I believe it would be to the country. In that way a great economy would be effected; the work of the House would be expedited and we would not be sitting here so long.

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L LIB
UNION

Arthur Meighen (Prime Minister; Secretary of State for External Affairs)

Unionist

Right Hon. ARTHUR MEIGHEN (Prime Minister):

Mr. Speaker, when I saw this motion on the Order Paper at the opening of thi session, I endeavoured to get into touch with the Editor of Debates in order to ascertain what the effect would be were this motion to pass. His unfortunate illness and subsequent death prevented me from doing so. I asked for a memorandum from the Chief Translator, and though he asked to be consulted again on the subject so that he would have an opportunity of giving further and more reliable details, I gather from his memorandum that there is nothing insuperable in the way. While I would prefer that this motion should go to the Debates Committee, I do not think

the importance of further consideration is such as to justify deferring the matter at all. I am quite content that the motion should pass, with only this one proviso, that if it is considered more convenient to print the translations on Monday morning as part of Hansard, that method may be adopted instead of the special sheets.

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L LIB

Charles Murphy

Laurier Liberal

Hon. CHARLES MURPHY (Russell) :

Mr. Speaker, I want to congratulate the hon. member for Chambly and Vercheres (Mr. Archambault) on having again brought this motion, to the attention of the House, and on having brought it forward in such a manner as to secure the unanimous endorsation of hon. 'members. In connection with the subject to which the motion refers, I was reminded, while the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) was speaking, of two remarkable instances in connection with members in this chamber. The first that I was reminded of refers to the case of a Mr. Gigault who, many years ago, I think between 1882 and 1887, occupied a seat in this House. In those days, my participation in the work of Parliament was from the gallery of the House in which I was, perhaps, at that time the most frequent attender. The gentleman to whom I refer came to Parliament and in the first session was unable to speak a word of English; but by continuous application and close study, that gentleman, in the last session of that Parliament, delivered in English an address which, in cogency of argument and in felicity of phrase, equalled the speech of any English-speaking man who then occupied a seat in the House. That was a remarkable performance. I understand that the gentleman to whom I refer was the representative of Rouville. In this Parliament and in our own day, indeed, in very recent days, we have seen that achievement duplicated the other way around in the case of the Minister of Trade and Commerce. Although still quite a young man, I remember the right hon. gentleman's advent to this chamber; I was in the gallery when he entered the House, and I heprd him make his first speech here. I have been a fairly close student of his political career since then, not always agreeing with it, but always maintaining a very great respect and esteem for the right hon. gentleman's capacity and ability. While there are in that right hon. gentleman's career some things to which, of course, as a political opponent, I am bound to take exception, I want to pay this tribute to him to-day, that of all

the things that stand to his credit, there is none which equals his mastery of the French language within the last few years. For that reason, as well as for the cordial way in which the hon. member for Fron-tenac (Mr. Edwards) and other hon. gentlemen opposite have received the motion of the hon. member for Chambly and Vercheres, (Mr. Archambault) I think the House and the country are to be congratulated upon this brief discussion this afternoon, and the Government also upon their hearty aceptance of the principle embodied in the motion.

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UNION

Matthew Robert Blake

Unionist

Mr. M. R. BLAKE (Winnipeg North) :

Mr. Speaker, I rise, not so much to support the motion of the hon. member for Chambly and Vercheres (Mr. Archambault) , as to agree with the hon. member for Westmoreland (Mr. Copp). Very few speeches are delivered in French nowadays, and I see no reason why they should not be translated and in our hands the next morning; I do not see the necessity of carrying the translation over for a week. Many issues which are discussed on the floor of this House are past and ancient history in a week and the speeches have passed into oblivion by that time. I agree with the hon. member for Westmoreland that these French speeches should be translated each day and form part of Hansard the next morning.

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Motion agreed to.


THE CATTLE EMBARGO.

UNION

William Smith

Unionist

Mr. WILLIAM SMITH (South Ontario) moved:

Minister of Agriculture in the Ontario Government stated the other day that he had convinced a very prominent man in Scotland that the embargo should be removed. I have talked more hours with Mr. Montgomery than this gentleman ever talked minutes with him, and I know that he has not persuaded Mr. Montgomery that it would he in the best interests of the Old Country that the embargo should be removed.

One word more, and then I will leave this matter in the hands of the House. It is just possible that I may not have the sympathy of the Government, the sympathy of the House, or the sympathy of the country at my back, but notwithstanding that, I am convinced from my own observation and experience that my resolution is in the right direction.

Mr. WILLIAM H. WHITE (Victoria, Alta.): Mr. Speaker, I am very glad indeed that the hon. member for South Ontario (Mr. Smith) has brought this question before the House. He is a man who has had a great deal of experience in the live stock business and knows stock conditions on both sides of the Atlantic. His opinions are therefore of considerable weight. From personal experience I cannot say what advantages might accrue to this country if the embargo on cattle were raised. Although I have been interested in a small way in the raising of stock during a large part of my life, I have never been a shipper or importer of cattle, but I take it from the large stock growers, particularly of Western Canada, who have both exported and imported stock, that their anxiety to have the embargo removed must be attributable to some definite advantages which they foresee. The raising of the embargo is a thing with which this Parliament or this Government has little to do, and it is very doubtful whether we shall ever succeed in that direction. The alternate proposition of my hon. friend I heartily agree with, and that is to establish cold storages and abattoirs on this side of the water to enable us to send our dead meat over.

The first year I came to this House, in 1908, I placed a resolution on the order paper, and, like that which my hon. friend has mentioned, it got side-tracked in some way, not however before it had been discussed to some extent. I remember that both sides of the House agreed with me, and the strongest advocate of cold storage at that time was the right hon. gentleman who is now Prime Minister (Mr. Meighen).

There is one thing that is beyond dispute, and that is that, whether by embargo or by the establishment of cold storage throughout this country, something must be done to carry on the live stock business of the western plains. If our market were closed to the United States there would be no future whatever for this industry, and we know that there are still large areas of grazing land that might be used for the purposes of cattle raising. The Government has made an attempt to stimulate the industry and enhance production, and unless we have some assurance that we are to have outside markets for our cattle very few men will remain in the business for any length of time.

When you reflect that the same grade of cattle that were selling in 1919 as high as twelve and fourteen cents as now sold in the western yards at between five and seven cents, you can see that the business is not in a very healthy condition. The slump in grain prices was large but the slump in prices of cattle was unexpected, and after the experience of the bad winter the year before last many stockmen were thrown out of business. Indeed, I believe that the number of those engaged in the business has declined some 50 per cent in the last year as compared with what it was during the past three or four years. With my hon. friend opposite (Mr. Smith), I say emphatically that something must be done. The removal of the embargo would be highly beneficial and the stockmen of the country seem to think that it would be advantageous. But whether or not the removal of the embargo would be the means of keeping up our industry in Canada, the one thing that I heartily agree with is that some steps should be taken to establish on this side of the water a system of cold storage and abattoirs so that if we were forced out of the American market and could get no relief from the embargo being removed, we should still have a way of handling our stock in this country.

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UNION

Henry Arthur Mackie

Unionist

Mr. H. A. MACKIE (Edmonton East) :

I do not favour the resolution on the Order Paper. This matter has been the subject of discussion for the last two or three weeks in the Provincial Legislature of Alberta because a candidate was defeated on this question in an election recently held in England, and it is a sore point with every cattleman in Western Canada. I do not know by what method of reasoning my hon. friend arrives at the conclusion that it is necessary for England to

put a stigma on our cattle in order to develop the industry in Canada. I am not going to take any issue with the mover of the resolution (Mr. Smith) as to the method of increasing our trade in Canada and improving our labour conditions. He may be right on that point or he may he wrong. But there is one thing that the Canadian people in Western Canada will not stand, and that is an indirect method of adopting protection in England without a tariff, by placing a mark of inferiority on our cattle which they do not deserve. I sincerely hope that if the resolution is adopted it will be only after considerable protest on the part of hon. members. I will not go into any lengthy discussion of this matter, because the press has been full of the subject for the last two or three weeks, dealing with it from a provincial as well as a Federal point of view. But I wish to take my stand against the resolution and to say that I differ from the hon. member for Victoria, Alta. (Mr. White) who supports it.

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PRO

Michael Clark

Progressive

Mr. MICHAEL CLARK (Red Deer):

Like my hon. friend from Victoria, Alta. (Mr. White) I have the highest appreciation of what the hon. member for South Ontario (Mr. Smith) has done for the live stock industry of this country, and I am sure that every member of this House who has taken the trouble to acquaint himself with the record of my hon. friend on this subject will listen with the greatest respect to any views which he advances at any time upon the live stock industry of this country. I go this distance, at any rate, in sympathy with my hon. friend's resolution and in opposition, I think, to the spirit of the remarks of the hon. member for East Edmonton (Mr. Mackie), that I have no sympathy whatsoever with the attempts to get Canadian cattle into Britain by means of the crowbar. I observe there are politicians over in Britain who tell the British people how they should conduct their business. Well, the attempts of these gentlemen remind me of the fact that a distinguished British statesman was sitting forty years ago at a dinner table in London next to a distinguished European diplomatist who was loud-mouthed in his criticisms of Mr. Gladstone's Government of that date because he could not keep order in Ireland. The British statesman said that he refrained from pointing out to this diplomatist that he would be in a better position to criticise the inability of Mr. Gladstone's Government to keep order 45

in Ireland if his own Government could keep order in its capital. The friend to whom he spoke asked him why he had refrained from so stating. He replied: "Because I have learned the truth of Cham-fort's saying, that in this world we have often to be instructed upon many things by people who know nothing about them." I am opposed to the method of the crowbar because I believe in the golden rule.

I believe in doing to others as I would be done by, and I know nothing in this world that would create a greater storm in Canada than if any British statesman were to come here and insist that we should have a free market for Lancashire cottons because they were better than Canadian cottons. I have not imagination enough to conceive of the storm that would be created. Of course there is a reason for that. While we, who have lived any time in the world, know that all men are equal, we have also learned that as a rule, especially today, youngsters know a great deal more than their fathers. While I have a great respect for the knowledge of Canadians, and I have great respect for their knowledge of their own business I do think that we ought to extend an equal respect to the British people in regard to their business.

I want to endorse what has fallen from my hon. friend from Victoria (Mr. White), and to carry his remarks a little further. He said we have very little to do with what the British people take into Britain. I should say that we have nothing to do with it; and I support my view upon that by reminding this House that we would not for one moment stand for British statesmen interfering to-day with any tariff we liked to put on goods here. However, I have to differ from my hon. friend in regard to his resolution to tViis extent-that I think under freedom we should get a great many of the advantages that he dilates upon very wisely and very truly. I think the more of our cattle we finish at home the better it will be for the live stock industry; but if we have a free entry into Britain for our cattle we should not be compelled to sell them there-we should have perfect freedom in the matter. After all it is rather an abstract question to discuss. We could send cattle alive or we could send the meat frozen, or in any shape that it pleased us to send it and the people with whom we were dealing to receive it. Under freedom we should have all the advantages that my hon. friend points out; we could sell just as we wanted to do.

I do not know whether the House would bear with me if I offered to tell them how they could sell more beef in Britain. They could sell more beef in Britain if they bought more cotton and woollen goods there. It is very elementary-and here I am talking about what pertains to Canadian rights, Canadian opinions, and Canadian business. If, as my hon. friend from Victoria asserts, we need more markets for our agricultural produce, and I certainly agree with him, if such a market is to be found in Britain, there is one way to get it: We must give some inducement for the ships to come to Canada and carry produce over, and ships do not carry loads one way in this world if they can carry them two ways. Now, as a matter of fact, at the present moment Manchurian wheat, Argentine wheat, Australian wheat, is beating Manitoba wheat out of the markets in Britain by its cheapness. That is a matter of fact at the present moment. What is the consequence? That British ships are going to Manchuria, going to Australia, going to the Argentine-especially to the Argentine where the tariffs are extremely low against British goods-and they are carrying wheat from all these places. If we want to compete with these countries in the matter of wheat then the lesson is obvious-bring the ships to our coasts. The same thing applies to cattle. ,

I consider this Government had a magnificent opportunity at the end of the war if they had had the courage and initiative -a magnificent opportunity. We are very much the nearest of the outlying portions of the Empire to- Britain. During the war immense sympathy was created between Britain and this country. Not only was sympathy created, but we had a ferry boat service established between this country and the Old Country by the exigencies of the war. Reduced to economic considerations why was that ferry boat service established? Because we had the markets for our goods: not only Britain but the other nations of Europe had to have our goods. Thank God, the exigencies of the war disappeared, but the exigencies of economics remain with us; and the thought I want to leave with my hon. friend and with the House is, that if we want markets we must give them. If we want to get our cattle into Britain we must reduce our tariff against British goods and bring the ships to our shores. I say there was a magnificent opportunity because of the sympathy that had been created between this country and the Old Country, and because of our near-

ness to the Old Country. If we had had a government of initiative and courage at the end of the war they would have seen the state of affairs coming to which I have referred. They would have seen the wheat produced in other countries beating our western wheat, they would have seen the cattle from Australia and from the Argentine beating our cattle-because there is a large amount of cattle being taken from both of these countries to Britain, three and four times the distance that Canada is from the Old Country-and they would have reduced the tariff and kept up some portion at least of what I have ventured to describe as "the ferry boat service" that was established during the war.

I regret extremely on personal grounds that if my hon. friend takes this resolution to a vote I cannot vote with him. I see much, force in many of the things that he said but he would hardly expect me. While I agree with him that we have nothing to do with telling Great Britain what she should do, he would hardly expect me as a free trader to do anything to persuade Britain to keep up obstacles against trade in any shape or form whatsoever. For . these reasons if my hon. friend takes his resolution to a vote I am afraid I shall have to vote against it and, I repeat, I shall do so, on personal grounds, with very much regret.

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UNION

Donald Sutherland

Unionist

Mr. DONALD SUTHERLAND (South Oxford):

The Order Paper would indicate that the resolution now before the House is one that is commanding the attention of quite a number of hon. members. The present resolution is followed on the Order Paper by another motion from an hon. member who holds entirely opposite views to those advocated by the hon. member for South Ontario (Mr. Smith). I doubt if there is in the Dominion a man who can speak with greater knowledge of the subject than the mover of the resolution we are now discussing. He has been identified with the live stock interests of Canada for many years. He has occupied a very prominent place among the live stock breeders of this country, and I am inclined to attach considerable importance to the views which he holds with regard to this question which is apparently exercising the minds of a great number of people to a marked degree at the present time.

I have a very distinct recollection of the coming into effect of the embargo against Canadian cattle. At that time my special interest in farming was in finishing

beef cattle for the British market, and I have since been engaged in that business to a greater or less extent almost continuously. I have a very vivid recollection of the predictions that were made when the embargo was placed against our cattle, and I have followed the discussion very closely from that time down to the present. In November of 1892, when some suspected cases of pleuro-pneumonia were discovered in a shipment of cattle from Toronto, the embargo was placed against Canadian cattle. It was in effect previous to that time against cattle from the United States from the year 1879. I have a recollection of a motion moved by the hon. member for South Ontario (Mr. Smith) in 1905 advocating the bringing to this country of British experts with a view to having them ascertain whether there was any disease among our cattle or not. There is no contention on the part of the British authorities to-day that this embargo is being maintained against our cattle by reason of disease; they freely admit that it is a system of protection in favour of those engaged in the cattle industry in the Old Land. Notwithstanding the address this afternoon by that ardent free trader from Red Deer (Mr. Clark) on his old hobby, I think he can find examples in Great Britain of protection that ought to be a lesson to a younger country like Canada, and it seems to me that we might very well copy some of the policies pursued by the British Government.

As far as I am concerned I do not presume to advise the people of Great Britain what they should do in this matter. For many years I felt very sore to think that while our cattle were free from disease the embargo was still maintained against us, but after having heard such an ardent free trader as the hon. member for Red Deer get up in this House a few years ago and take an entirely opposite view to the one that he would like us to believe that he is in favour of to-day, I have not felt quite so sore. I have reference to the debate on the Naval question, which I am using just to illustrate the inconsistency of the hon. gentleman. His argument then was to manufacture the finished product (Battleships) in our own country in order to employ Canadian labour and have the money spent in producing the finished article spent in Canada. I do not wish to get away from the subject before the House, but I do desire to point out that there are two sides to this question, and that we had better make the best of what we now believe is the

45i

established policy in Great Britain in regard to the cattle embargo.

I am sorry to think that during the last few months an effort has been made in certain quarters to make this a political issue. Only to-day I notice prominently featured on the front pages of the Ottawa press references to the Ontario Minister of Agriculture who is now in London, and I am going to quote some of the newspaper articles which have appeared during the last few days. It is only about two weeks ago that the Provincial Treasurer of Ontario, Hon. Peter Smith, delivered an address in the town of St. Marys. I quote from the report of that meeting given in the daily press:

St. Mary's, Feb., 20.-Hon. Peter Smith, in his address at the opening of the new TJ.F.O. Club room here Saturday afternoon, touched briefly on the Drury-Morrison controversy, declaring it was an unfortunate affair.

Excuse me, I have started reading in the wrong place. This is the part to which I wished to call attention. The speaker referred to is Hon. Peter Smith:

The speaker mentioned the amount of tuberculosis in cattle, saying that it had been necessary to kill 84 out of 85 head at Montelth.

To Hon. Manning Doherty, he said, will go the whole credit if the embargo on cattle is lifted by Great Britain which is likely to be the case.

A herd of cattle on a Government farm managed by the provincial authorities of Ontario diseased to the extent of 84 out of 85! This would not indicate that our bill of health is so clean as some people imagine. I also notice the following in the Ottawa press of February 23rd:

The resolution moved in the Quebec Legislature by the Hon. J. E. Caron, Minister of Agriculture, and seconded by Premier Taschereau, is as follows:

"This House, after obtaining knowledge of the facts of the embargo against Canadian cattle, believes that this embargo is not justified and regrets that it is maintained. Mr. Caron speaking on the question, said, in part: I do not like the policy of the British authorities. It is a strange stand they take on this embargo question. They claim that Great Britain is the country of free trade in commerce. That does not exist for us, but does exist in large degree for the United States. We have helped England and made so many sacrifices that I believe that Great Britain should consider us at least as favorably as the United States."

As a matter of fact this embargo does not rest against Canadian cattle any more than it does against cattle from the United States or any other country, it applies to all countries. In November, 1902, regulations were put in effect by the British Board of Agriculture to prevent cattle from Canada coming into that country, and in

1894 the British statuts with regard to cattle embargoes were consolidated. In

1895 the provision by which the Board of Agriculture might exempt cattle coming from any country was cancelled and the embargo was embodied in a statute. In that statute Canada was not mentioned specifically; the embargo is applicable to all countries.

Now, why were the British authorities so anxious to keep cattle disease out of their country? It is not necessary to say that the British people are pretty shrewd and well able to take care of their own interests. Stock breeders from all parts of the world look to Great Britain to secure stock of high quality to improve their herds and flocks. Previous to the imposition of the embargo disease had for years decimated the British herds to such a degree that the authorities were amply justified in adopting protective measures. It is now admitted by those authorities that they cannot afford to remove this embargo. Those who are engaged in the livestock industry in Great Britain, and who are bringing tremendous revenues to their country by reason of their sales of livestock, do not feel that their interests ought to be jeopardized by permitting importations of livestock from outlying parts of the world. The hon. member for South Ontario has pointed out what the result is in respect to Ireland alone. The same might be said in respect to Scotland. The farmers in Great Britain have benefited immensely by reason of the embargo. I do not know, but possibly on account of the unsettled conditions that prevail in Great Britain, particularly in labour circles, the British Government may be forced to change their policy on this subject. I think myself that it is very unfortunate that we should endeavour to stir up any further labour troubles in Great Britain, because we all know they have enough to contend with in any event. But I notice in the Ottawa papers this morning the following:

Hon. Manning H. Doherty, Ontario Minister ot Agriculture, had a star place among the speakers and made special reference to London newspaper attacks on him in regard to his attitude on the embargo....

Mr. Doherty proceeded to prove that Canada possessed a clear bill of health from thirty years of official records and denied the charge of disease as one of the most unmitigated falsehoods ever promulgated. The same was true of the assertion that those who believed in the agitation would make money by the removal of the embargo. Not one of them would make a dollar, he said.

Mr. Doherty readily admitted that the matter was one for negotiation between Great Britain and the Federal authorities.

Evidently he recognizes that he has no authority to go over there and deal with the British Government or any one acting on behalf of the British Government. He is simply there in the capacity of a private individual, evidently trying to stir up trouble in labour circles in Great Britain. I think it is rather significant that the Minister of Agriculture for Quebec should adopt the same attitude; and I believe the same attitude has been adopted by some of the members of provincial governments in Western Canada. It is unfortunate, I think, that this aspect of the situation should be forced on the people as it has been. The resolution practically intimates that notwithstanding all these press notices that are being featured, we had better attend to our own business and let Great Britain do the same. In brief, I think that is the substance of the resolution, and I heartily agree with those sentiments. The hon. member for Victoria, Alta. (Mr. White), has pointed out the conditions that prevailed in 1919 and those which prevail to-day with regard to the live stock industry, and states that there has been a great fall in the price of beef cattle. That is quite true. There has been a serious deflation in the prices of all farm products, and it has struck the farmer a little in advance of most other people; consequently he is somewhat apprehensive as to what the future has in store for him.

In that regard I wish to refer to something which may have escaped the attention 'of hon. members who have not been engaged in farming operations. For the last few years we have been drawing very heavily upon our capital account and trying to make ourselves believe that we have been making good profits. The day is not far distant when we shall be forced, by the fact that our capital has become exhausted, to adopt different methods. That has been quite evident in the older provinces during the last few years, where there has been a desire to produce as much as possible while prices were high. A very poor system of farming has been carried on through those years, and the result is quite apparent. I believe that the same condition prevails throughout Western Canada. Reference has teen made to the shipments of grain to England from Manchuria, Argentina and other

parts of the world. I have on a number of occasions pointed out the effect that the shipment of so much wheat and so little flour from this country has had, and have even gone so far as to advocate the putting into commission of some of the Government-owned transports in order that flour, the finished product, should not be discriminated against but should be put on an equal footing with wheat in regard to ocean rates. As it is to-day, there is a preference of about fifteen cents a bushel in favour of wheat and against flour, and I think that militates against the interests of the farmer of Canada to a greater degree than the average man realizes.

Before, during and since the war, Great Britain controlled the shipping of the world. While the people of that country are, in a sense, a free trade people, they are doubly protected in that their government arrange to bring them the raw material by which they can finish their stock with the mill feed and put that stock on the market-a market in which it will command the highest price because it has an advantage over stock from other countries by reason of the embargo. Now, I do not blame the people of Great Britain for doing this; it is good business on their part; and it would be good business on our part if we adopted similar measures with regard to our raw material and fed it in this country. I have always believed and contended that a country which ships out its raw material in the unfinished state is bound to remain a poor country. It is the finished article that commands (the high price. Why is there a difference of from three to five cents a pound between the stocker and the finished animal? Because the finished animal is the one that is most desirable, and will bring to those who finish it a price that the man who raises the stocker will not receive. Why are so many anxious to have a market for the stocker? Because they are following the line of least resistance. Many of our friends in Western Canada have for some years found conditions much easier than we have in the older provinces. While they have been able to grow big crops and to let their cattle run on the ranches without the care we are forced to give to the cattle in the older provinces, they view with alarm the possibility of their cattle being debarred from the United States under the tariff that may be put into effect

by the new government there. They think, therefore, that it would be advisable in any event, to have the British embargo removed, because their unfinished cattle would then be able to reach that market. That would be all right, but I believe that the remedy we should adopt is the one under which we shall notf be drawing on our capital account but shall be enriching the soil that is under cultivation in this country. I have thought for years that instead of endeavouring to spread our people over more acres and bring more land under cultivation it would be better to farm more intensively the land that has already been broken up. Some hon. gentlemen opposite endeavour to leave the impression that we have in Ontario quite a number of abandoned farms. I do not know where there is one abandoned farm in Ontario, notwithstanding the frequent assertions to the contrary made by the hon. gentlemen opposite.

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L LIB

Thomas Vien

Laurier Liberal

Mr. VIEN:

Is it not a fact that the rural statistics of Ontario show that there is a decreased acreage under cultivation?

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UNION

Donald Sutherland

Unionist

Mr. SUTHERLAND:

No, I do not think they do. There is a much larger area used for grazing than there was a few years ago, on account of farm labour not being available. What this country requires more than anything else is people from the Old Land. Bring the emigrants from the Old Land-those who will go on the land- and thus enable our farmers to carry on as they should carry on, and you will be doing something for the benefit of the whole of the people of Canada. Do not pay too much attention to this cry that is being raised that we must debar immigrants from coming into this country, because in our towns and cities hundreds and thousands of people are out of employment. Have hon. members ever stopped to ask themselves why so many people are out of employment? They are out of employment because they will not do the work that is here ready and waiting for some one to tackle; but rather than do the work that ought to be and must be done before we shall be able to meet our obligations, many people Will accept aid in order to carry them on in the hope that something congenial may turn up. We must face the situation with courage. I am satisfied that we have been pursuing a most wasteful and prodigal policy with regard to our natural resources. We have found our natural resources being depleted

to such a degree that many people, it is true, are anxious to get off the farms and they are getting off the farms very fast. They have drawn on their capital, and with the profit they have made in addition to that, they are in a position to leave the farm and allow the land to be tilled by some one else, while they seek employment elsewhere.

To my mind, the live stock industry of this country is our only hope for replenishing the depleted soil fertility of our farms, and we should apply ourselves, with proper Government assistance, in order to see that those who are finishing the live stock of this country ready for the market are not hampered as they have been hampered, and seriously hampered, for many years past by reason of regulations passed which did not permit them to have a fair show in finishing their stock for the market. I have pointed this out on numerous occasions in this House, indeed, until some people have begun to think that this is a fad of mine and that there is really not so much in it after all. I refer to the adulteration of millfeed. But I am more convinced to-day than I have ever been in the past that I was right, and that we must remedy those conditions and make it possible for the farmers of this country not only to raise the best kind of stock that can be raised, but to finish them, and we must see that that live stock can be placed on the market in the easiest possible manner. I believe it would be much more desirable to have abattoirs at points nearer where the animals are finished than to have them at the seaboard as has been advocated by some hon. members. If our animals are shipped to Great Britain in a finished condition, as they ought to be, the farmers of this country will benefit much more than they would by shipping out the unfinished animals. I am not so much alarmed about this embargo which has been on the statutes of Great Britain since 1895, but which was in effect by an order of the Board of Agriculture in 1892. I believe the live stock industry of this country, with the high-grade breeding stock that we have been bringing out from Great Britain, has a bright future. But these things will have to be done; we shall have to have better facilities, and better transportation rates must be had for the shipment of stock than we have at the present time.

I might give just one illustration of the handicaps under which we are labouring to-day. I am now finishing cattle that

were raised in Western Canada near Bat-tleford, and hon. members can understand that with a six days' trip from Battle-ford to Toronto, and then from Toronto to my farm, considerable expense is entailed before those cattle reach the stable where they are to be finished. I have not the- slightest doubt that the system in vogue in Western Canada will be changed very materially in the near future, and instead of sending out the unfinished animals, the raisers of live stock will finish with grain, which is raised in such immense quantities in that part of the country, thus finishing them in Western Canada, and in a few years the number of finished live stock that will be shipped out of Western Canada will greatly surprise many members of this House. I do not intend to take up any more of the time of the House in regard to this matter, but I contend that the finishing of our live stock in this country will be conducive to the breeding of better stock; that it will result in a much better system of farming, and that the fertility of the soil will be greatly enhanced as a result of such methods. Consequently, I approve leaving the British authorities to manage their own business in that respect, and we shall be doing very well when we mind our own, because they admit they have adopted this measure in Great Britain for the protection of their farmers.

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?

George Albertus Cox

Hon. RODOLPHE LEM IE UX (Maison-neuve) :

Mr. Speaker, I do not intend to take up much of the time of the House as I have on the Order Paper a resolution dealing with the same subject. I am not rising to answer my hon. friend (Mr. Sutherland) or the hon. member for South Ontario (Mr. Smith) who, we all know, is very familiar with the subject and who is himself one of the best stock breeders in this country. His motion reads:

That, in the opinion of this House, it would not be in the interests of Canada should the Government of Great Britain remove the embargo upon cattle going into the United Kingdom.

I do not oppose this motion on the grounds taken by my hon. friend, who is very familiar with the business and who, I understand, has in mind the establishment of abattoirs and of a big trade in beef and meat with other countries. As to that, I have nothing to say; but I rise this afternoon, not because I wish to meddle with any domestic business which concerns Great Britain, but because I think we should not let Canadian cattle lie under

the stigma with which it is now being branded throughout the world. That is the only point which I wish to make. I am too much a friend of Canadian autonomy myself to go and meddle with political matters in Great Britain. Great Britain is free to mind her own business as Canada is free to mind hers. We know that the tie between Great Britain and Canada is very slender. Indeed the only ties which bind us to the Mother Country, are first, the Crown; second, the Governor General, and third, the appeals to the Privy Council, and then there is that right of veto which the home Government has never exercised. As an hon. gentleman said the other day, in our domestic affairs, we are practically absolutely free. I do not wish to interfere with the policies of British statesmen when those policies concern only the United Kingdom; but whenever in Great Britain a policy is pursued which directly affects the interests or rights of Canada, I as a Canadian, as' a free man, and, I will say,- as a Britisher, have a right to remonstrate politely, but to remonstrate firmly with the Mother Country; and in the present instance I claim it is not meddling with British politics to protest that on this question of the embargo, to say the least, a very grievous mistake, nay more, a very serious wrong has been committed.

I know of only one man of late years who has taken up this matter and made a political issue of it. He is a Canadian, and we all know his name-Lord Beaverbrook. I think not many will approve the stand he has taken in England on this question. Personally I do not think he took the proper stand on the embargo in the by-election which took place in England only a few days ago. He had no mandate to speak for the Canadian people and was therefore simply importing a Canadian issue into British politics. But We, the members of the Canadian Parliament, speaking for the whole people of Canada, have the right to remonstrate with the Board of Agriculture in Great Britain and say: You have adopted

a measure prohibiting Canadian cattle from being landed on the docks at Liverpool, Glasgow, or any other port in the United Kingdom on the pretext that these cattle are tainted with a disease; now it has been proven beyond the shadow of a doubt that the disease did not exist in that case, and we protest against this libel against our Canadian cattle. If the Britsih Government wish to adopt a protective policy, which the embargo is in effect, I do not object to

that, but in that case let them say openly that it is a measure of protection for the cattle breeders in Scotland and in the north of Ireland. The various Canadian legislatures which of late have adopted resolutions on this question have not been animated by any political motives. It is a Canadian question which effects Canadian stock breeders and Canada at large, and the legislatures of Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Alberta also, I believe, spoke only the minds of the people. Their remonstrances were couched in very dignified language, and I do not think we in this Parliament are debarred from speaking to the Mother Country in language such as was used by .these divers Canadian legislatures.

Let me say that I have had the honour to belong to a Government which gave a preference to the Mother Country. That preference was tne crowning work of the hon. gentleman who sits beside me, the hon. member for Shelburne and Queen's (Mr. Fielding). There were Canadians at the time who said: Now that you are giving

a preference to the Mother Country, you should at the same time claim a reciprocal preference from her. But the hon. gentleman answered: No, it suits Canada to

give a preference to Britain; we ask nothing in return. That is exactly the attitude which as Canadians we take with the Mother Country in fiscal matters. We are free to act as we please, and if to-morrow Great Britain adopts a tariff against Canadian goods what complaint have we? Have we not ourselves' taxed British goods for the last forty-five years, and was it not a Canadian statesman who in answer to the complaint that our tariff against British goods might perhaps break the British connection made the famous retort "So much the worse for the British connection.'' That is not my view, but it was the view held by someone well known to the right hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster). No, Mr. Speaker, on trade matters we are perfectly free, and for myself I admire good old England which in spite of all these tariffs against her from Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the premier Dominion, and the United States has maintained free trade throughout all these years.

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CON

George Green Foster

Conservative (1867-1942)

Sir GEORGE FOSTER:

Just for my own information I should like my hon. friend to verify the quotation he gave just now. Can he do it?

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L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

It is now a matter of history. The words were used by Sir John A. Macdonald, but we know that he was not always in earnest in what he said, and he might have used these words in a Pickwickian sense. At all events, they were attributed to him.

To come back to this question of the embargo, I think no one will deny the accuracy of the statement made by the late Sir Charles Tupper. He was a stout Canadian, and also a good Britisher, and when he was High Commissioner in London he tackled this question-and he was the first High Commissioner to do it-with the Board of Agriculture in England. I thought when I quoted him the other day in speaking on the Address, that I would find a report of his activities in connection with this matter in his memoirs, but I failed to find it there. I had read it in the Life of Sir Charles Tupper by Mr. J. W. Long-ley, where I read, at page 184:

Sir Charles Tupper's acceptance of the High Commissionership left a large blank in the political life of Canada, but he acted in accordance with true patriotism in accepting this post, and raised it to an importance not contemplated when it was originally created. He infused great vigor into his discharge of duties previously regarded as prefunctory, and was watchful regarding everything which concerned Canada's interests. When the Imperial Government was about to take steps to prevent Can. adian cattle being admitted to Great Britain on the ground that disease had been discovered among cattle in some parts of the United States, Sir Charles went straight to Liverpool with British experts, caused several animals selected by the experts to be slaughtered and carefully examined, in which technical investigation, his medical education gave him a strong position. So far as it was in human power to establish the unimpeachable freedom of Canadian cattle from all disease, Sir Charles was absolutely triumphant. Not a trace of disease was found in a single animal slaughtered. But this had no effect in staying the determination to place an embargo on Canadian cattle, which have remained ever since under the bann, though the most conclusive evidence has been repeatdly furnished that no disease existed. This leads to the suspicion that other reasons than fear of disease contributed to uphold this policy. It had every appearance of being a prohibitive measure in the interests of British cattle-raisers. This matter has only been referred to as an instance of the personal devotion of Sir Charles in determining that no means should be spared to see that the cattle industry of Canada was given fair play.

I have quoted this just to show that it has been established beyond a shadow of a doubt that the charge that our cattle are tainted with pleuro-pneumonia is unfounded. The intent and purport of my motion that humble representations be made to the British authorities that in the event of the embargo against Canadian cattle

being maintained, the British authorities should state that it is not because our cattle are diseased, but simply because they wish to maintain a protective measure for the cattle raisers of the United Kingdom. That is the purport of my motion, which of course, is not now under discussion, but I might urge this in connection with the motion of my hon. friend the respected member for South Ontario (Mr. Smith). If a vote is taken on this question I shall vote not so much against the text of the resolution introduced by my hon. friend because he upheld by a very sensible statement the object of his resolution which is the development of the meat industry and the chilling process in Canada, and the establishment of abattoirs. I have no objection to that. But he spoke also about the embargo, and therein lies the difference between himself and myself. I have no objection to the embargo provided it is well understood that the reason for it is not that our cattle are diseased, for that is a mere myth. The British Government may impose all sorts of i prohibitive measures they deem fit. It is their business and they are free to act in their capacity as legislators on the other side, as we do in Canada, on trade matters affecting us. But I do seriously object to our Canadian cattle being stigmatized throughout the world as tainted with disease.

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UNION

Donald Sutherland

Unionist

Mr. SUTHERLAND:

Is it not a fact that when the embargo was placed upon United States cattle going into Britain in 1879, the condition was laid down that Canada would have to impose a ninety-day quarantine against American cattle coming into this country? And, after that had been done, did not the United States retaliate by imposing a similar restriction on Canadian cattle going into that country?

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L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

I do not contest my hon. friend's assertion in this regard. He may be right. But what is absolutely true to-day is that as a result of investigation after investigation held during the lastthirty years our Canadian cattle have been declared wholly free from disease, and this fact has been admitted without reserve. During the past summer the Imperial Press Conference, as is well known, visited Canada and it was a revelation to me to read some of the speeches made by some gentlemen who accompanied that delegation. In answer to questions put to them regarding the prohibition against our Canadian cattle, some of the representatives of the

Imperial Conference admitted that there was no contagious disease in the cattle raised in this country, but that the question involved was merely one of protection for the cattle-raisers of the Old Country. Once more, let me say that I do not object to Great Britain having a tariff against Canada or any other country. It is her business to act as she sees best in this respect, and John Bull is a shrewd old business man. But I certainly do object to the libel.

Hon. W. S. FIELDING (Shelburne and Queen's) [DOT] As a contribution to history, if I can make nothing better of the matter,

I think I can supply the information on which my right hon. friend the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) desired regarding that quotation. 1 do not think it came from Sir John Macdonald. It came from the Toronto Mail and Empire, which was very close to Sir John and at that time was regarded as his organ. So much for the history of the quotation.

Now, the resolution of the hon. member (Mr. Smith) is quite contrary to the one proposed by my hon. friend from Maison-neuve (Mr. Lemieux). The mover of the resolution wants the embargo retained; my hon. friend from Maisonneuve seeks to have it removed. The question is a very old one. I quite agree with my hon. friend from Maisonneuve that we have the right to remonstrate in regard to any question that effects us prejudicially, and that as British subjects it is our privilege to go and state our views before the government of the Old Country. But having stated them fully and accurately, I do not see what there is to be gained by our continuing to nag at the British Government. As I say, this is an old story. Several hon. gentlemen have given us dates of the embargoes. I remember a good many years ago when Lord Onslow was Minister of Agriculture in the British Government. I had discussed the matter with him. I happened to be in England soon after there was a change of government. Meeting Lord Onslow I said: " I see that C. B. has come in C. B. was the familiar designation of Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman-" and I presume that the folk who have been agitating for the removal of the embargo will now have their way." He said: " I bet you they

won't." Well, I did not take the bet, and it was well that I did not, for I should have lost. Some British politicians occasionally argue in favour of the abolition of the embargo, but the Department of Agriculture of the British Government -strongly supported by the landed interests of England-have been determined to keep it up, and they will continue to do so. But the embargo is no longer put upon the ground that there is disease in Canadian cattle. My hon. friend (Mr. Lemieux) says that what he complains of is the libel which the embargo places upon our cattle. Well, he is mistaken, for if ever disease was attributed as a reason for the embargo that is no longer the case. The reason is entirely one of self-protection on the part of the British people. They admit freely that our cattle are free from disease. But it is argued that there is more than a possibility of disease being introduced from the United States through Canada and in that way affecting the cattle in the Mother Country. That is the sole ground on which they place the embargo. I read recently a very interesting article from the pen of Lord Crewe on this subject. He was formerly Colonial Secretary, and to-day, I think, he is leader of the Liberal Opposition in the British House of Lords. He has written a strong letter regarding the action of Lord Lee, President of the Board of Agriculture, who preceded the member that was defeated the other day, and he says that the agriculturists of England are standing behind Lord Lee in this matter, and will insist on this regulation being kept up. I am inclined to think that at bottom it was a protective measure; I have a suspicion that it was designed to protect the cattle raisers of England and Ireland. An hon. member says that he wants them to admit that. Well, did you ever know a man to admit a protective policy squarely as such? You sometimes adopt measures which some people describe as protective, but you hate to call them so yourself, and that is about the situation to-day in England. I thing that this measure is retained owing to their desire-a desire with which hon. gentlemen opposite should not, I think, find fault-to protect the cattle trade of England and Ireland. In recent days, however, as I have already stated, disease in Canada is no longer given as a reason for the embargo, and the British authorities make this absolutely clear. The letter of Lord Crewe, to which I have already referred, and the declarations of other authorities in England, emphatically state that the cattle of Canada are free from disease. This being the case, therefore, I do not see that there is any libel on Can-

ada. It is contended, however, that there is a danger of cattle disease being brought into England from the United States through Canada.

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UNION

Herbert John Mackie

Unionist

Mr. MACKIE (Edmonton):

Has any

statement been made by the British House of Commons to the effect that the embargo is merely a measure of protection?

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UNI L

William Stevens Fielding

Unionist (Liberal)

Mr. FIELDING:

I do not suppose that the British Commons have made any such declaration; I should not expect it. But even if that is so, I think it is beyond dispute that the ground is no longer taken that the embargo is due to any disease in our cattle. That reason has been abandoned, and it is now useless to argue against the embargo on the ground that there is any objection to our cattle by reason of disease. The British Board of Agriculture admit that there is no disease in Canadian cattle; Lord Crewe and Lord Lee both admit the same thing; and all the literature on the subject is clear that the whole ground, good or bad, has nothing to do with any question of disease in our cattle.

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March 9, 1921