If I may continue my remarks, Mr. Chairman, it occurred to me when I heard the leader of the opposition reading that advertisement that a man must be a university graduate and have had three years
experience in business, and have a knowledge of Canada, and so forth, he was going to receive a wonderful income for all those qualifications-$1,500 a year. I believe the minister's desires are to get away from that restrictive qualification. The minister himself is a business man, and he knows there are many men in this country forty-five and fifty-five years of age who never saw the inside of a university who would make a much better trade commissioner than any callow youth with all the college medals on the earth pinned on him.
It requires a man of personality, intelligence, with a knowledge, of business, and a knowledge of Canada, not a knowledge of higher mathematics or of the classics.
However as I said before, this matter will be discussed on the supplementary estimates, when I hoipe it will not be so near midnight as it is now, and when it is discussed I would like to make a few remarks and urge that many changes be made.
I only say to the minister now that I believe if the government will introduce a bill to take the trade commissioners of this country out of the Civil Service Act entirely, the same as is done with the officers of the Taxation department, this House and this country will be behind them. I believe this is one part of the government service where the commission should not make the appointments, because it is more a matter of personality, tact, and business experience than a knowledge of academic subjects that is required. In the trip which I made around the Caribbean sea, I found two trade commissioners, and in looking up the records I find that the total amount paid for all our Commercial Intelligence service to the West Indies and all the land surrounding that sea comes to $4,000 less than the amount paid for the same service at Milan, Italy. It is about the same as is paid in Calcutta. I think, therefore, we must come to the conclusion that we are not overpaying the men who are down in the West Indies. However, these matters can Ibe discussed at greater length on another occasion. I only rise now to state to the minister that I believe if he increased the vote for Commercial Intelligence manyfold this country would be behind him. When you travel throughout all these countries to the south and find in every town and almost every village, ia representative of the great American nation that is out for
Supply-Trade and Commerce
trade, whereas you can only find two Canadian trade commissioners in that vast territory you may make up your mind that we do not deserve to get very much of the business originating there. To my mind the matter of our export tirade is the great question before Canada to-day, particularly eastern Canada. They talk down in the Maritime provinces about building up industries by protection. Why, we have tried it for fifty years and we have failed. If you do not believe me, ask Mr. McCurdy. If you do not believe that gentleman, ask the junior member for Halifax (Mr. Black) after the speech he has made here to-night. Prosperity in eastern Canada depends upon export trade. However, I am getting drawn into another wide subject and I will not further continue along that line. Let me urge upon the minister that when he brings down his supplementary estimates he will increase the vote for this service, because it is of the most supreme importance. I am afraid the policy we are now carrying on is a good deal of a cheese-paring policy. Economy is a great thing, but a penny-wise and pound-foolish policy is not good for the export trade of this or any other country.
has been objected to always, this sliding from the estimates of one department into those of another. The intention of the act is that each department shall foe gone into separately so that if necessary a motion referring to it may foe made before the estimates are taken up. That cannot be done if the minister slides into his estimates in this way. In saying that I do not intend any special reflection as respecting hiis department. I think the government ought to be satisfied with the very large amount of business put through to-day, especially in view of the eleven o'clock adjournment.
In one case an item was considered in the evening for the fin t time some weeks ago, and we have now i cached a much later period of the session. Of course I do not insist at all; if my right hon friend says that we cannot get this vote to-night we shall have to go into committee some other day.