Hon. R. J. MANION (Fort William):
Mr. Speaker, in the forty minutes at my disposal I do not intend to offer any useless compliments to the Minister of Finance (Mr. Dunning) in regard to his budget, but I will say this, that in bringing down this budget he has done a service to the Canadian people, because by it he has rung down" the curtain on the last act of the farce which the present government has been presenting before the people of Canada for the past nine years. A farce is usually funny, but in this case it has been somewhat of a tragedy for the Dominion and it is well that the end is near. In the minds of most thinking people everything is over for the government but the election. For nine years the government by its un-Canadian policy has to a serious extent been doing damage to all our industries, the cattle industry, the dairy industry, the fruit and vegetable industry and the manufacturing industry, and by damaging those industries it has driven our workers and wage earners to the United States instead of providing work and wages for the people of Canada.
To prove that fact, all one has to do is to quote the figures of importations from the United States since the present government came into power. If hon. members will look
them up they will find that the first year the government was in power we imported from the United States $516,000,000 worth of goods and last year we imported $869,000,000 worth, or almost double the former figure, an increase of nearly $400,000,000, 60 or 70 per cent of which could have been produced in this country had we had a proper Canadian policy. Our attitude throughout those nine years has been that we should have such a policy. This attitude we have put on record by resolutions moved in the house, by amendments moved to the budget, and by our leader in speeches that he has delivered before the Canadian people. Our attitude in short is one of "Canada first," one by which we shall produce in this country all those commodities which we can economically produce, utilizing in the process our own raw materials and bringing them to the finished product here instead of elsewhere, at the same time giving work and wages to the Canadian people instead of to people in foreign countries.
The reply of the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) last year was the final summing up of the attitude of the present government when he assumed the position that we must "do nothing to provoke Washington." That was merely the final summing up, because for some years the government had been taking the same attitude. In the last three elections hon. members will find, if they look up the preelection proclamations of the government, that they have been proclaiming a free trade or low tariff policy. The Minister of the Interior (Mr. Stewart), who spoke yesterday, made that great proclamation of the "death-knell of protection." The Prime Minister not once but dozens of times in his speeches has emphasized the fact that the tariff is a tax on the people and therefore should be reduced. He has said in many speeches that a tariff fosters trusts, combines and mergers. He has bewailed what he called our "brick for brick" tariff policy. He has declared that the Tories try to shut out imports and in his Edmonton speech he said that imports do no harm. The Minister of Railways (Mr. Crerar), the late Minister of Immigration, Mr. Forke, and the Minister of Agriculture (Mr. Motherwell) are all out-and-out free trade supporters. But no later than this session when we introduced our amendment dealing with the New Zealand order in council, the government repeated its attitude, and its followers, notably the hon. member for Weyburn (Mr. Young) and the hon. member for West Elgin (Mr. Hepburn), took the position that the order in council should stand, that it would do no good to change it. The government finally moved a want of confidence motion in them-
The Budget-Mr. Manion
selves and carried it, making this want of confidence in the government almost unanimous throughout Canada.
The Minister of Finance at Regina as late as February 6 last, or about three months ago, emphasized the fact that he was "a low tariff man." He said:
I stand for a tariff as low as possible having regard to the interests of consumers, producers and industry generally.
Subtopic: CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON THE ANNUAL FINANCIAL STATEMENT OF THE MINISTER OF FINANCE