Joseph Henry Harris
Yes I was bewailing the fact, and I will indulge in further bewailing if it will do my hon. friend any good. My reason
for that bewailing is that this inert, inefficient government have not seen fit to tackle in a proper way the question of a national fuel supply. Had this government risen to the necessities of the situation they would have given the necessary assistance, when it became apparent that there would be a scarcity of fuel, so that Alberta coal could have competed successfully with imported American anthracite. Then there would have been no shortage of coal in the central provinces of Canada this year. I am satisfied if that had been done, Alberta would have shipped the coal we needed to us and thus met all our requirements. We use only seven per cent of the total amount of American anthracite coal which is mined. We are dependent upon the American supply, 75 per cent of which is furnished by line companies and 25 per cent by independent companies. These independent brokers of the companies, sitting at Buffalo, are anxious that we shall continue buying supplies of anthracite coal, so that they can clear a profit of from ten to fifteen cents a ton commission on every ton they sell, and that 15 cents commission is being collected by brokers living in the city of Buffalo, not in the city of Edmonton. Let us shift, that over from Buffalo to Edmonton; let us shift it on to Canadian soil.
Mr. Speaker, if the Liberal party were sincere in their desire for an adjournment, they had the means at their hands to force an adjournment; they could have put on closure if they were sincere and wanted to proceed with the business of the House, or they could have withdrawn the adjournment motion and gone ahead with public business. We on this side are willing to go ahead and do business. If they want to fill up all these vacant portfolios in the government, they should listen to the words which fell from the lips of the Prime Minister at Richmond Hill on September 6th, when he said: It is not a question of ability; we have lots of ability in the rank and file of the Liberal party. If that is the case, why do you not fill up our front row with men sitting around you, from your own ranks? Is there not enough ability among the 101 members who fill the treasury benches without having to go outside for ministers? When I was a boy we used to say of anything petty, it is small potatoes. With all respect to the hon. ministers of the crown I say that, in the eyes of the Canadian people, more and more each day they are being regarded as very, very small potatoes. As I sat here and saw the government properly peeled by the member from Calgary, properly baked by the members from Nova Scotia within
The Address-Mr. Hams
the last day or two, French-fried by the hon. member for Kent, N.B., hash-browned by the members from Montreal, scalloped by the members from British Columbia, boiled and parboiled by the members from Toronto, mashed by the member for Fort William, creamed a little bit by the members of the Progressive party and the Independent and Labour groups, and finally put through the mincer by the right hon. leader oif this party, as I saw ail this I could not help thinking that this group of small potatoes opposite who pretend to call themselves the government of Canada to-day are one indigestible mess whom the people of Canada consigned to the incinerator on October the 29th last. I ask them, therefore, in all sincerity to have the common decency to resign and let others take their place who are ready to carry on and to give Canada stable government.
The Prime Minister at Richmond Hill said:
Next to be considered is the question of ability of the government.
Mr. Speaker, look at our front row, I ask the hon. Minister of Public Works, where is the ability of this House?