April 22, 1925

INSPECTOR OF PENITENTIARIES

CON

Alexandre Joseph Doucet

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. DOUCET (for Mr. Black, Halifax):

For a copy of all correspondence, reports, documents, telegrams, or memoranda, passing between the Department of Justice and any other departments of the government, or ministers, or any other parties whatsoever, within the past six months, relating to the appointment of Inspector of Penitentiaries, and especially relating to the refusal to accept for such appointment Colonel Eric W. MacDonald of Halifax.

Topic:   INSPECTOR OF PENITENTIARIES
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Motion agreed to.


CAMP BORDEN


On the Orders of the Day:


CON

William Alves Boys (Whip of the Conservative Party (1867-1942))

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. W. A. BOYS (South Simoce):

I should like to call the attention of the government and the Department of National Defence to despatches that appeared in the Toronto Telegram, one being dated Ottawa, April 20, and the other Kingston, April 20, as follows:

The question of removing the air force from Camp Borden to Mohawk Camps at Deseronto has been under consideration by the Defence department, but it was stated there to-day that the scheme is only tentative and in "embryo." The present quarters at Borden are considered to be too much off route, while the buildings, originally erected by the Royal Air Force, are out of repair.

The despatch from Kingston of the same date reads as follows:

Charles Hanna, M.P., Belleville, is planning so that Camp Borden will be removed to Mohawk Camp, said to be a much more desirable location. According to many interested in Camp Borden, there are drawbacks for aviation work contemplated by the government. Camp Mohawk is said to be ideal for the work. Camp Mohawk also provides for the development of hydroplanes, which is said to be one of the reasons for moving Camp Borden.

I should like to ask the government whether or not the matter has been under consideration, and if any decision has been reached in that regard what is the nature of that decision. I should like an answer to the question from the government or from the Minister of National Defence.

Hon. E. M. MACDONALD, Pictou (Minister of National Defence): In the Votes

and Proceedings my hon. friend will find a question covering the matter of which he has spoken.

Topic:   CAMP BORDEN
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CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

A question?

Mr. MACDONALD (Picton). This question will appear 'in the orders of the day tomorrow. The matter has been under the consideration of the department but no decision has been reached.

Topic:   CAMP BORDEN
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VALUE OF FARM PRODUCTS


On the Orders of the Day:


LIB

Arthur Bliss Copp (Secretary of State of Canada)

Liberal

Hon. A. B. COPP (.Secretary of State):

Yesterday my hon. friend from East Elgin (Mr. Stansell) drew the attention of the government to a return which he had moved for last session but which he said had not been brought down. I may say to my hon. friend that on looking over the Votes and Proceedings of last year I find that the return he was inquiring about was laid on the table on May 19, 1924.

Topic:   VALUE OF FARM PRODUCTS
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THE BUDGET

CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE


The House resumed from Tuesday, April 21, consideration of the motion of Hon. J. A. Robb (Acting Minister of Finance) that Mr. Speaker do now leave the chair for the House to go into committee of Ways and Means, and the proposed amendment thereto of Sir Henry Drayton.


LIB

Herbert Meredith Marler

Liberal

Mr. HERBERT MARLER (St. Lawrence-St. George):

Mr. Speaker, while there are

very many matters which arise in this House from day to day upon which it is very difficult indeed, almost impossible, to agree, it does seem to me that there is one upon which we should be on common ground, and that is the explanations which we as members of the House of Commons give to this House and consequently to the public in relation to the financial statement submitted by the Minister of Finance in his budget speech. Those explanations, Mr. Speaker, should be of such a nature as to enable the public to fully grasp the contents of that financial statement-the entries, its purport and its effect. Of course I am very well aware that criticism of a justifiable nature is advantageous, that kind of criticism cannot be denied; but criticism which is founded on inaccuracy or which i3 brought forward purely for partisan reasons has two results: First, the public mind is very much confused; and in the second place, it casts suspicion upon the acts of those officers of the crown who are responsible for the preparation and the presentation of the statement in question. Now you will agree, Sir, and I think all hon. members will agree, that to have any suspicion cast on the officers

The Budget-Mr. Marker

of the crown as regards the preparation and the presentation of the statement in question cannot be advantageous either to the public or to this Dominion as a whole.

In the course of this debate, Mr. Speaker, certain assertions have been made which are most unfortunate in their inaccuracies. In other cases the facts have been distorted purely for partisan reasons. As a result the public mind is confused. To-day, to the extent of my ability it will be my effort to remove certain of these inaccuracies, to give a fair explanation as regards this financial statement, and what it means and what it purports to be, and also, to the extent of my ability, likewise to give some explanation of the conditions of the finances of this country.

I will first take up the statement which has been submitted by the Acting Minister of Finance. I will review it, and examine it also, with a certain degree of care. I will attempt to give to the entries which therein appear their proper application; and I will also attempt to show the relations, the reflection and effect, which our railway indebtedness have on the financial statements which have been submitted from time to time to this House and consequently to this country. Now, this is the statement vdiich the Acting Minister of Finance submits as the financial statement for the year ending March 31, 1925, and he states that the revenue for the year amounts to $344,000,000. Then he deals with the expenditure and divides the expenditure under two separate headiigs; the first dealing with the ordinary business of the country, and the second dealing with the business of the country -which is not considered to be ordinary business, namely, the railway advances. Likewise the first part of the statement ;s subdivided under three headings: Ordinary expenditure, capital expenditure and special expenditure. As I have stated the revenue for the year is $344,000,000. Part one deals with the expenditure of the ordinary business of

the Dominion:

Ordinary expenditure $ 319,700,000

Balance over ordinary expenditure 24,300,000

Capital expenditure 18,077,000

Balance over 6,223,000

Special expenditure 4,400,000

Balance over (after providing for the ordinary business of the country).. .. 1,823,000

Which balances out with the revenue of $344,000,000. Part 2. We then come to that part of the business of the country which is

not ordinary business, and in that category the Acting Minister of Finance states that he has made railway and other advances- almost entirely railway advances as a matter of fact-to the extent of $19,527,000. As against that he applies the balance over, after dealing with the ordinary affairs of the country, of $1,823,000, and an increase in value of certain assets of $4,000,162, making a total amount to apply as against the railway advances of $5,823,102, and he brings down as an increase in the consolidated debt during the year the sum of $13,703,838. I would like to make clear what that statement purports to be. It purports to be a statement relating to the consolidated debt and the consolidated revenue of the country, and brings down as a result the net increase of the consolidated debt alone. It has not, nor is it intended to have, any connection with the railway indebtedness of the country. That is an entirely separate and distinct matter and has to be taken into consideration separately, althougn it is true it reflects to some extent upon the consolidated fund of the country because the two are to some extent related. But this statement is clearly a statement as regards the consolidated fund of the country alone. That being the case, certain criticisms which have been made in this House with regard to this statement seem to me to be most uncalled for. I intend as a matter of fact to read certain of those criticisms and put them on Hansard, because I will take them up for what they are worth as I proceed with my remarks, and I will show that this statement which has been submitted by the Acting Minister of Finance (Mr. Eobb)-and I will treat with that later on in the course of my remarks-is prepared and is submitted and in precisely and exactly the same way as previous statements have been prepared and submitted to this House from year to year. The first statement which I desire to comment upon is that of the hon. member for Vancouver Centre (Mr. Stevens), and I am extremely sorry that the hon. member is not in his seat this afternoon. I sent him notice that I proposed to quote his remarks to-day. I will read to the House the criticisms to which I take exception, because they are very germane to the remarks I propose to make. At page 1653 of Hansard of March 30, my hon. friend used these words, referring to this statement:

As a matter of fact, it was a presentation that was hopeless in its confusion and baffling in its inaccuracies.

The Budget-Mr. Marler

This budget I cannot conceive as being other than deliberately designed to deceive the people as to the correct condition of affairs. It is a subtle expedient designed to shield a guilty and moribund government from the just indignation of an awakening public opinion.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

Hear, hear.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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LIB

Herbert Meredith Marler

Liberal

Mr. MARLER:

My hon. friend says "hear, hear," and hon. members behind him cheer. Are my hon. friends proud of a statement like that coming from a former minister of the crown casting aspersions on the manner in which statements of this nature are prepared? Will my hon. friend say "hear, hear"? Is he proud of that statement?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

I am proud of its accuracy.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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LIB

Herbert Meredith Marler

Liberal

Mr. MARLER:

So that my hon. friend

says that that statement is accurate, and that the statement submitted by the Acting Minister of Finance is inaccurate.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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CON

Arthur Meighen (Leader of the Official Opposition)

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MEIGHEN:

Hear, hear.

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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LIB

Herbert Meredith Marler

Liberal

Mr. MARLER:

And that it is not based

on statements previous!}' made. Will my hon. friend say that?

Topic:   THE BUDGET
Subtopic:   CONTINUATION OP DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE ACTING MINISTER OF FINANCE
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April 22, 1925