April 27, 1921

UNION

John Allister Currie

Unionist

Mr. CURRIE:

Yes, it kicks the props from under our British connection. We might' as well look upon it as it really! is, and then every man will know what he is voting for. To vote for this resolution is to vote want of confidence not only in our own Prime Minister but in the Prime Ministers of Great Britain and our sister Dominions. That is the true attitude behind this resolution, and if its sponsors want to force it on the House, why, we will all know how to vote.

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L LIB

Hermas Deslauriers

Laurier Liberal

Mr. HERMAS DESLAURIERS (Montreal St. Mary's) :

land; this large territory, very rich in minerals, covers an area of about one-fourth of the American territory and would complete the development of Japan's industries. The two Australian Parliaments have passed an Act providing for a tax of $500 upon every Oriental immigrant, but that legislation was disallowed by a Foreign Office through the Governor General, of Australia, notwithstanding the fact that she is a sister nation standing on the same footing as the other nations within the Empire. Since that time, Australia has endeavoured to collect, through her agents, the tax to which the Japanese object, as they feel they have the support of Downing Street. Since then Great Britain did not hesitate to enter into a treaty with Japan. This is how the situation is described by an American correspondent:-

Australians will not have any Japanese for the same reason that California is rejecting them. The only way for the British Government is to make a new alliance, which instead of dealing with Japan, will protect the British interests in the East, and Australians believe that the future of the United States in the East will compel the Mother Country to follow their policy.

We see, however, the two allied countries arming themselves through mutual distrust. Admiral Falks, who is in command of the British squadron in Asia states that he could not give battle in eastern waters because there is no proper naval base there. It would be foolish, he says, to try and defend Australia at such a great distance from our naval base. Should a ship be . damaged, we would have to go back to Great Britain for important repairs. However, Great Britain is having a powerful naval base built up at Singapore with a very large dry-dock. On the other hand the Japanese are establishing a naval base on the Marshall islands. And the Americans are constantly urging the advantage of England making use of the dry-dock at Pearl harbour in connection with her base at Singapore.

English statesmen are of the opinion that Japan needs an outlet to her surplus population; they are building up their navy on a larger scale than the United States; their naval budget is greater than either those of the United States or of England. Useless to ask why they are building this fleet. Sooner or later the Empire will have to break away from Japan. If Canada endorses the cause of Australia, oui ships will anchor in the Pacific, on the Japanese side, bearing the brunt of the Japanese torpedo attacks. Will our rank of sister

nation oblige us to subdue all the nations of the world?

Australia at the Imperial Conference of next June, will no doubt claim the support of the Empire and the sister nations. Whas attitude shall we take? That is the question. We must, notwithstanding our rank of sister nation, direct our policy as, being one of the countries of America, where our interests lie, and where we are to look for our support based upon those common interests (which are after all the most natural and the most lasting foundation. As far back as 1838, Lafontaine was of the same opinion and insisted on this point as of the most vital importance. He thus wrote to Mr. Ellice:

"It is not in your power to change our customs, our needs and specially our geographical position, although one of your newspapers has recently expressed such a desire. That is very British. It is absurd to think that we might have in view to become again a French possession. Such a motion would make the Canadians rise in a body. But you cannot prevent our being Americans, either that a sound policy on the part of England should prepare its northern colonies to independence, or that this lack of foresight should compel us to be gathered into the bosom of the Union. It is for you to avoid this, if you judge it convenient.

This is also the opinion of true soldiers, that it is absolutely absurd for Canada to think of a system of defence either by land or sea without first coming to an understanding with the United States. We should to-day more than ever take advantage of the Monroe doctrine, a British invention, on which Britain, the only European nation left on the American continent, all the others having been expelled, relies to safeguard, her interests in America (Canada and Newfoundland).

Through the intervention of Mr. Canning, a British statesman and Mr. Addington, British Ambassador at Washington, President Monroe decided to no more tolerate the conquest or the retaking of any part of the two Americas by any European power. We should direct our future policy in such a manner as to conclude a defensive alliance with the United States, the only nation that can and has an interest to give us an effective protection against Japan who might at any moment turn Canada into a new Belgium. But this alliance can only easily take place inasmuch as we will be independent, because the United States cannot undertake to protect us against all Great Britain's enemies. We should also think of forming an alliance with the republics to the south, Argentina, Brazil and Chile, so as to afford protection to the

whole American continent. It is ridiculous for Canada to try and build fleets and erect fortifications independently of our neighbours. It would be looked upon as a challenge, when they are addicted at present to a policy of armament without measure and they possess all the gold in the world. Since Mr. Lionel Curtis, states that there are but two possible alternatives to our future policy, either imperial partnership which would impose sacrifices and create burdens, or independence under the sovereignty of the King of England, we should choose this last alternative, the only one, owing to similarity of interests, of a nature to ensure our safety at the proper time. This was Lafontaine's opinion in 1838 as I explained a few moments ago, it was in 1852 Disraeli's opinion, in 1865, it was John Bright's opinion, also that of Lord Lisgar, Bishop Laroque and Bishop La Fliche, it was also that of Sir Charles Tupper and Sir John A Macdonald and also the opinion I believe of our late leader Sir Wilfrid Laurier.

Sir John A. Macdonald of whom the present Government party claim to be the successor spoke as follows:

When we become a nation of eight or nine millions of inhabitants our alliance will be worthy of being sought by the great nations of the earth.

And Sir Charles Tupper said:

We must ever retain the entire^ complete and independent management of our affairs.

Mr. Speaker, in closing my remarks, I believe that the most honourable, the most Canadian attitude that might adopt our delegates at the next Imperial conference, would be to cross the seas bearing in their heart the motto of the late leader of the Liberal party: "Canada first, Canada

second, Canada forever."

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LIB

Louis Édouard Fernand Rinfret

Liberal

Mr. F. RINFRET (St. James) :

Mr. Speaker, I do not intend to make a speech, nor do I presume to conclude the debate. But I cannot let go unchallenged the suggestion thrown out by the hon. member for Simcoe (Mr. Currie) that those who vote for the amendment of the leader of the Opposition (Mr. Mackenzie King) will be taking an anti-British stand. I do not see how the hon. member can reconcile this view with what has just been said by the right hon. Minister of Trade and Commerce (Sir George Foster) that the amendment is useless. The Prime Minister himself said in the conclusion of his address that he would not bind Parliament to any final decision; therefore the member for

Simcoe will admit that if he charges us with any anti-British feeling he must also conclude that the Prime Minister himself made an anti-British conclusion to his speech.

I do not intend, I repeat, to make a speech, and possibly I should crave the indulgence of the House for entering this debate after so many prominent members on both sides have taken part in it. But I wish to give the impressions, I would say, of a young member listening to the series of speeches that we have heard, and I should like to do so in a very untraditional way. First of all, I cannot see why on this occasion, as on several other occasions, the Government should charge the Opposition, when we move a resolution or an amendment to the motion for Supply, with bringing forward a motion of want of confidence. It seems to me that there is no logic in that conclusion, because we all know that a motion for Supply is very often made for the express purpose of permitting the discussion of a certain subject to take place. I do not wish to make any argument based upon the rules or traditions of the House; I repeat that I wish to give my own impression as a new member. But I do notice that the House is moved into Committee of Supply very often for the express purpose of permitting discussion, and to-day the motion was specially made on behalf of the Government, to allow the member for King's (Sir Robert Borden) and other members to make speeches about the coming conference in London. If we cannot move an amendment on such an occasion without being charged with expressing want of confidence in the Government, it means that when we have a discussion of this kind we cannot embody our attitude in an amendment and ask for the vote of the House on it without at the same time intimating that we wish to refuse Supply to the Government. Why, Mr. Speaker, in this particular case such a contention would be manifestly illogical because we are ready to vote Supply to defray the expenses of our Prime Minister in connection with his trip to London. We are not trying to prevent him from attending this conference; we are merely trying to have Parliament agree on the attitude he should take there.

The Prime Minister said that he could not go to the conference with a fixed programme because if he did so there would be no use for the conference. I cannot understand what that means. The Prime

Minister seems to feel that if he goes to London without a fixed programme, if he goes to voice his own opinion, then there is plenty of room for such a conference, but if instead of voicing his own opinion or even that of his own party he goes there with the opinion of the Parliament of Canada, there is, he would contend, no use for the conference. On the contrary, I think it is perfectly right to say that by moving this amendment we have shown our desire to strengthen hdg position rather than to weaken it in any way.

The Prime Minister has said that he will not arrive at any final decision which would be binding upon Parliament with regard to what we shall do in the future. But the Minister of Trade and Commerce says there is no use for this resolution; that Parliament might as well set forth the cut of the clothing, the shape of the suits that the Prime Minister should take to London. We are not concerned at all, Mr. Speaker, with the quality of the clothing that the Prime Minister will take to London. But we are concerned as to the quality of clothing that he will bring back from London to Canada. It is not so much, I will say, a question of clothing as it is a question of ties-the question of what ties the Prime Minister will bring back around his neck and wish to put around the necks of the Canadian people. I will go further and say that the Prime Minister-provided, of course, he accepts the resolution that we have been kind enough to move to-day-should not prolong his sojourn in London. Of course, it may be interesting for Lloyd George to know what the Prime Minister of Canada thinks of the Anglo-Japanese treaty, hut I humbly submit that we have Chinese puzzles at home which require the attention of the Prime Minister. If he would give some thought to Lord Shaughnessy's letter about the railway problem, or spend a couple of days urging the Minister of Marine to abandon his scheme of shipbuilding when ships are not needed, or give his attention to other home problems, it would be worth his while making his stay in London as short as required by the conference, and in any case not too long.

I must say that I was very much impressed by the speech made by the hon. member for Red Deer (Mr. Clark) to the effect that we are concerning ourselves altogether' too much in this House about foreign policies. Mr. Speaker, more foreign policy has been jammed into this half session than during the whole of our history. It seems that we cannont enter upon the

consideration of any question, whether it be railways or canals or the debate on the Address or whatever it is, without getting an extra large supply of treatises on the League of Nations. I do not object to the" League of Nations; on the contrary I look very sympathetically upon this scheme. But I am afraid we are overfeeding the people with it, and the more we hear of it the less we are able to understand exactly what its aims are.

I repeat that by moving this resolution we were simply trying to strengthen the hand of the Prime Minister in London, in case, we will say, a resolution should be moved, not by a gang of robbers, as the Minister of Trade and Commerce insinuated so mildly, but by gentlemen on the other side or coming from other Dominions who might entertain opinions on certain matters different from those which we entertain in Canada. We were simply strengthening his position. We were allowing him to say not that we should avoid this and that we should avoid that, but that the Parliament of Canada is of opinion that we should not enter into such and such a bargain. That was our intention; if I understood the speeches delivered by hon. gentlemen on this side of the House, and I think it was a proper attitude to take. Instead of urging the leader of the Opposition to withdraw his motion, I am very sorry that such a wise parliamentarian and experienced politician as the Minister of Trade and Commerce did not urge the Prime Minister to accept that resolution and to go to London fortified by the feeling that the whole Parliament of Canada was behind him.

Mr. G., W. ANDREWS (Winnipeg Centre) : Mr. Speaker, I have looked forward with a good deal of pleasure to this debate, and I have not been disappointed. The speeches have been of a very high order, worthy of the great subject under discussion. I want to state very frankly my opinion on this subject, and I appreciate the opportunity to do so that has been afforded by the leader of the Government (Mr. Meighen). If my views do not coincide with the views of the people whom I represent, ample time remains for them to register their protest before the Prime Minister goes overseas.

In the first place, in my opinion, the great need in the world to-day, as regards the war and armaments, is disarmament, and disarmament, like charity, should begin at home. But having said that, I desire

also to point out that it is no use for one country to disarm to-day. We have long since passed that stage, and I must again point out to hon. members that not only Great Britain, but twenty-seven other countries took part in the last war as allies. The day of the little nation has gone, except in so far as it is supported by the opinion of civilization. Two things stand out in my mind. The first one is that if the leaders who declared war had

12 m. been called upon for one week [DOT]to undergo what our fighting men had to undergo in the salient at Ypres, the war would not have lasted very long. The second one, burned in with six-inch shells, is that if the countries of the world had spent half as much in peace propaganda as they spent in armaments, there would have been no war at all. Having said that-.and I have said it with a pur-t pose-I think the House will realize that, whatever else I may or may not be, I am not a jingo-imperialist.

I have listened to the amendment, and if it does not curtail the work of the Prime Minister, if it does not tie his hands, what good purpose does it serve? If it does tie his hands, Prime Minister Meighen becomes delegate Meighen, and that is a position which I would not accept myself, and I will not ask another man to do what I would not do myself. I would not ask the leader of the Opposition or the leader of the Government to do it.

I am not one of those men who believe in cast iron agreements. The British Empire has not been built in that way. There are a few men, as has already been pointed out to-day, here and everywhere, militarists, and mem who want everything bound up and fixed before they go on, who cannot work unless they have some precedents or authorities to go by. We find the same thing in every day business life. There are men who cannot work unless they get an order, and there are men who must have a precedent for everything, but such men never amount to much. As I have said, the British Empire has not been built in that way. We have always been fortunate enough to have men who could, in a commonsense way, deal with affairs as they came up, and if the time ever comes when the leaders of our nation require a precedent before they can act, or somebody else to give them an order, we can say goodbye to our greatness. But I would go a little further, and I would point out to hon. members that other countries are

just as anxious for peace as we are. . I venture the statement that Lloyd George wants peace just as much as I do. The British people have spent just as much blood and money and they are spending it now; the people of Australia, the people of South Africa have done the same thing. We are not going amongst enemies, we are going amongst friends, and this conference if it works at all, is going to work for peace.

Before resuming my seat, I think, for imperial reasons, it would be a mistake to let the Prime Minister go overseas from a divided House. It does not represent the spirit of Canada to send a representative overseas with only half the people or half the members of this House behind him. That has not a good effect, and it is effect -results-that we want. While any amendment that favours disarmament or peace always receives my sympathy, I think a mistake has been made in bringing this one forward to-day, and I ask the leader of the Opposition to withdraw it. If he can see his way to do that, he will never regret it.

The, House divided on the amendment of Mr. Mackenzie King, which was negatived on the following division:

++YEAS

Messrs.

Archambault, Lafortune,

Baldwin, Lanctdt,

BSland, Lapointe,

Bourassa, Davigueur,

Bureau, L6ger,

Cahill, MoCrea,

Cardin, McDermand,

Casgrain, McGibbon (Argenteuil),

Clark (Red Deer), McKenzie,

Copp, McMaster,

d'Anjou, Maharg,

D6chdne, Marcile (Bagot),

Delisle, Michaud,

Demers, / Molloy,

/Denis, Murphy,

Desaulniers, Papineau,

Deslauriers, Parent,

DuTremblay, Pelletier,

Ethier, Power,

Fafard. Provost,

Fielding, Proulx,

Fontaine, Reid (Mackenzie),

Fournier, Rinfret,

Gauvreau, Savard,

Gervais, S4guin,

Halbert, Sinclair (Antigonish

Johnston, and Guysborough),

Kay, Stein,

Kennedy (Essex N.), Trahan,

Kennedy (Glengarry Truax,

and Stormont), Turgeon,

King, Verville,

Knox, White-64,

++NATS

Messrs.

Allan, Harold,

Anderson, Harrison,

Andrews, Hartt,

Argue, Hay,

Armstrong (Lambton) , Henders,

Armstrong (York), Hocken,

Arthurs, Kemp (Sir Edward),

Ballantyne, MacKelvie,

Bolton, Mackie (Renfrew),

Bonnell, McCurdy,

Borden (Sir Robert), McGibbon (Musk oka),

Boyce, McGregor,

Brien, Mclsaac,

Butts, McLean (Royal),

Calder, McQuarrie,

Campbell, Manion,

Casselman, Martin,

Chaplin, Meighen,

Charters, Merner,

Clarke (Wellington), Mewburn,

Clements, Mowat,

Cockshutt, Munson,

Cooper, Myers,

Cowan, Nesbitt,

Cronyn, Nicholson (Algoma),

Crowe, Paul,

Cruise, Redman,

Currie, Reid (Grenville),

Davidson, Rowell,

Davis, Sexsmith, .

Doherty, Shaw,

Douglas (Strathcona), Sheard,

Douglas (Cape Breton Simpson,

S. and Richmond), Smith,

Drayton (Sir Henry), Spinney,

Edwards, Stacey,

Elkin, Steele,

Finley, Stevens,

Foster (Sir George), Stewart (Hamilton),

Foster (York), Stewart (Lanark),

Fraser, Thompson (Weyburn),

Fripp, Thompson (Hastings),

Fulton, Thompson (Yukon),

Gauthier, Tremain,

Glass, Tweedie,

Green, [DOT] Wigmore,

Griesbach, * Wilson (Wentworth),

Guthrie, Wilson

Halladay, ( Saskatoon ) -9 6.

PAIRS

Messrs.

(The list of Pairs is Whips). furnished by the Chief

Long, Thomson (Qu'Appelle ),

Scott, Vien,

Ball, Pacaud,

Hepburn, Tobin,

Bowman, McDonald,

Whidden, Crerar,

Hughes Boivin,

Peck, Fortier,

Best, Chisholm,

Blake, Cannon,

Morphy, Duff,

Charlton, McCoig,

Mackie (Edmonton), Hunt,

Lang, Wright,

Keefer, Lemieux,

Clark (Bruce), Maclean (Halifax),

Tolmie, Sinclair (P.E.I.),

Lalor, Marcil (Bonaventure),

Buchanan, Ross, \

Porter, Gordon,

Middlebro, Robb.

Bowman, Devlin.

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L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

I was paired with the

hon. member for Port Arthur and Kenora (Mr. Keefer). Had I not been so paired, I would have voted for the amendment.

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L LIB

William Duff

Laurier Liberal

Mr. DUFF:

I was paired with the hon. member for North Perth (Mr. Morphy). Had I not been so paired, I would have voted for the amendment.

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L LIB

Archibald Blake McCoig

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McCOIG:

I was paired with the hon. member for Norfolk (Mr. Charlton). Had I not been so paired, I would have voted for the amendment.

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L LIB

Aylmer Byron Hunt

Laurier Liberal

Mr. HUNT:

I was paired with the hon.

member for East Edmonton (Mr. Mackie). Had I not been so paired I would have voted for the amendment.

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L LIB

Lucien Cannon

Laurier Liberal

Mr. CANNON:

I was paired with the

hon. member for North Winnipeg (Mr. Blake). Had I not been so paired, I would have voted for the amendment.

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L LIB

Georges Henri Boivin (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Laurier Liberal

Mr. BOIVIN:

Had I not been paired

with the hon. and gallant member for Victoria (Sir Sam Hughes), I would have voted for the amendment.

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UNION

Hugh Clark

Unionist

Mr. CLARK (North Bruce) :

I was

paired with the hon. member for Halifax (Mr. Maclean). Had I not been so paired, I would have voted against the amendment.

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UNION

Simon Fraser Tolmie (Minister of Agriculture)

Unionist

Mr. TOLMIE:

I was paired with the

hon. member for Shelburne and Queen's (Mr. Fielding). Had I not been so paired, I would have voted against the amendment.

Main motion agreed to.

The House in Committee of Supply, Mr. Boivin in the Chair. ,

Public Works, salaries, $598,510.

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L LIB

Georges Parent

Laurier Liberal

Mr. PARENT:

Why is there an increase in salaries?

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NAT L

Fleming Blanchard McCurdy (Minister of Public Works)

Nationalist Liberal

Mr. McCURDY:

There is an increase of $15,390, which is more than accounted for by statutory increases and the increases due to the re-classification. The number of employees in the department is less than last year's.

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L LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE :

Is the Civil Service Act in full force in this department?

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NAT L

Fleming Blanchard McCurdy (Minister of Public Works)

Nationalist Liberal

Mr. McCURDY:

Yes.

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L LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

Is the re-classification completed so far as the Department of Public Works is concerned?

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NAT L

Fleming Blanchard McCurdy (Minister of Public Works)

Nationalist Liberal

Mr. McCURDY:

Yes, but there are a number of appeals pending before the board.

Generally speaking, however, the classification is in force.

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L LIB

Rodolphe Lemieux

Laurier Liberal

Mr. LEMIEUX:

I must protest against the changes made in the chief engineer's department.

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NAT L

Fleming Blanchard McCurdy (Minister of Public Works)

Nationalist Liberal

Mr. McCURDY:

There is a special vote for that, and when it is called I shall make a statement in regard to the engineering service.

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L LIB

Daniel Duncan McKenzie

Laurier Liberal

Mr. McKENZIE:

Last year we were told by some ministers that when the re-classification came into force and the salaries allocated in that schedule were paid the bonus would be abolished. Is that bonus to continue indefinitely or not?

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April 27, 1921