October 13, 1932

LIB

Maurice Brasset

Liberal

Mr. BRASSET:

For a copy of all correspondence, letters, telegrams and other documents in connection with the dismissal of Mr. Azade Bourque, as postmaster of Laverniere, Magdalen islands, and the appointment of his successor.

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GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH


The house resumed from Wednesday, October 12, consideration of the motion of Mr. P. G. Davies for an address to His Excellency the Governor General in reply to his speech at the opening of the session, and the proposed amendment thereto of Mr. Mackenzie King.


IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. ANGUS MacINNIS (Vancouver South):

Mr. Speaker, as a socialist and soap-box orator sent here by the largest constituency in the city of Vancouver, both as regards area and population, I wish to say a few words in connection with the motion now before the house. The speech from the throne states that we have been called together at this time in order to give effect to the agreements arrived at during the recent Imperial economic conference. The Prime Minister (Mr. Bennett) yesterday placed these agreements before the house and while he was speaking I could not help feeling that his words would do a great deal to raise the morale of those who were not well-grounded in the principles of capitalistic production.

We know it is one thing to make agreements of trade but another thing to find the means to purchase those things with which we might

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

trade. That is the difficulty with which the world is faced at the present moment. It is true that the channels of trade are restricted by high tariffs but even that would not be so bad if by any means we could purchase the things which are being produced in our own individual countries. As far as Great Britain and other parts of the British Empire are concerned, the position is that in each country there is an abundance of goods but the purchasing power of the people does not enable them to buy. The only solution which our business men seem to be able to offer for a condition of that kind is a further contraction of the purchasing power of the people. If in this country there was purchasing power for the purchase of commodities but such commodities were not available, then there would be some logic in making trade agreements and some effect might arise from them. But, if we cannot buy the goods which are produced here, how can we buy the goods produced somewhere else? I have heard no suggestion, either from the economic conference or anyone connected therewith, that there was to be an endeavour made to raise the purchasing power either of the industrial workers or the primary producers in the various countries. The contrary seems to be the case; every effort is being made still further to reduce the purchasing power of the people.

There is another observation I wish to make in connection with the conference. We must take into consideration the fact that because of this conference the total world trade will not be increased. If we are going to increase the trade between the various parts of the British Empire, then we will have to decrease our trade with other parts of the world. If we decrease our trade with other parts of the world, they, being under the same necessity as we to find a market for their surplus commodities, will be driven .to make trade agreements among themselves. The result will be that we will come back to just where we were when we started-we will have no more trade than we had before. That is the only logical result until such time as the purchasing power of the masses is increased.

In opening the conference the Prime Minister stated that the purpose of the conference was to cooperate in determining upon a plan by which this great empire might continue its leadership among the nations. I do not think that that is a very good reason for holding a conference. I thought the conference was held to improve the conditions of the people within this country and other countries which make up the empire, but in concluding his remarks yesterday, the Prime 53719-Hi

Minister referred again to a greater and greater empire.

As one whose ancestors have come from the mother land I have every desire that our relations with other parts of the British Empire shall be as close as possible. It may be prejudice on my part but I am convinced that down through the centuries we have developed a culture and worked out a technique of change which will possibly stand the world in good stead at this time when changes are bound to come. I believe that because of our membership in the British Empire these changes will be brought about with leBs violence than otherwise would be the case.

I am looking forward to more than a great empire and I do not think anything could express my point of view better than the lines of Tennyson:

Till the war-drum throbb'd no longer, and the battle-flags were furl'd

In the parliament of man, the federation of the world.

I hope for the day when the flags of trade competition as well as the military flags may be furled forever.

I think there was a greater reason for calling a special session of parliament than to pass the agreements arrived at during the Imperial economic conference. I remember that only two years ago we met in this house for the purpose of dealing with another situation-to end unemployment, and we are still far from having completed that particular job. The house has not been presented with any solution of this problem; perhaps the reason no mention was made of it is that they have no solution to offer.

I have very little to say with regard to the speech from the throne as it contains little outside of routine matters which would have had to come before the house in the usual course. However, I might say I was amazed when I read the second last paragraph of the speech. I could not understand how anyone could put such words into the mouth of the King's representative. I am convinced that as a specimen of unadulterated piffle nothing like it has ever appeared before in any speech from the throne. It is worthy of being illuminated and framed and sent to our various schools, unemployment camps and city councils throughout the dominion where it may be given a place of honour alongside " My Creed " which was sent out by the Department of Trade and Commerce some few years ago. What is the foundation for such language as this?

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

I rejoice that the wisdom of your steadfast policy of retrenchment and constructive development, which has ameliorated the hardships of Canadians-

We know of the retrenchment, but what constructive development, what amelioration and whose amelioration? Is it that of the unemployed?

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PRO

Agnes Campbell Macphail

Progressive

Miss MACPHAIL:

The Conservative party.

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IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. MacINNIS:

That may be so, but I

doubt even that. Then it goes on:

The strength of our financial structure, the resourcefulness of agriculture, and the integrity of industry have enabled us to take quick and profitable advantage of improved conditions.

What improved conditions and who took advantage of them? I admit that agriculture must indeed be very resourceful in order to keep itself alive at all under present conditions.

Let us however for a moment look into these advantages of improved conditions and see how they work out. Yesterday I received from the city controller's office of Vancouver figures in connection with unemployment as of June 1, 1930, June 1, 1931, and June 1, 1932. On June 1, 1930, the number of unemployed men, that is those on unemployment relief in the city of Vancouver was 351. We must remember that this was just at the time that we had the general election and that the Prime Minister and the rest of the Conservative party, who are now on the government side, were going throughout the length and breadth of the dominion calling attention to the serious unemployment situation. As I say, on that date the number of unemployed on relief in Vancouver was 351. On June 1, 1931, after one year of applying their remedies, the number had increased to 1,186, and on June 1, 1932, it had increased to 7,290. Those are the improved conditions. I suppose it was those unemployed who took advantage of the improved conditions that have occurred.

Let us go further. From September 8 to 12, 1931, the number of unemployed on relief in Vancouver was 3,434. These are the sworn figures given by the auditor for the city to the provincial government in connection with relief. In the same period of 1932 the number was 8,347 or about two and a half times as many. I noticed in the Vancouver Sun of September 8 the following statement:

Requesting that they be permitted to lodge in the city jail a delegation representing about 150 unemployed men waited on Chief Constable C. P. Edgett Wednesday afternoon after they had been refused aid by the city relief department.

Their plea was that they had no place to sleep and they urged Chief Edgett to permit them to use the cells.

"This is not a boarding house," declared the police head; "it's a jail and only persons who commit offences are given lodging here."

"Well, maybe we'll commit a few offences," stated a delegate.

"That is one way to get a free meal," said the chief as the delegation left his office to report the result of the conference to the crowd outside police headquarters.

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UFA

Edward Joseph Garland

United Farmers of Alberta

Mr. GARLAND (Bow River):

Those are the changed conditions.

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IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. MacINNIS:

They are the improved conditions.

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UFA

Edward Joseph Garland

United Farmers of Alberta

Mr. GARLAND (Bow River):

I hope they are proud of them.

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IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. MacINNIS:

No doubt they are. Let me give some more figures from the city of Vancouver. The expenditure on unemployment relief for the four weeks ending August 31, of this year, was $151,085, while in the same period of last year it was $60,372. On Monday of this week I mentioned another situation that was arising in connection with unemployment and that is the impossibility of paying rents out of the amount of relief that the unemployed are receiving at the present time. The unemployment relief amounts to only approximately $15 a month with $2.50 for each child. I understand that while only $2.50 is allowed for each child of those who are unemployed, in connection with the Doukhobor children who were removed from their parents who were sent to the penitentiary, the sum of $4 a week is allowed for each child. Therefore if our unemployed who have children want to get better sustenance for their children, they will have to commit some crime.

Last year the expenditure for rent that the city of Vancouver had to pay amounted to only $11,280. This year from the first of the year to August 31 the amount paid amounted to $82,541, so that there is not very much improvement. But let us take the situation as a whole, that is as it represents the world at large, and see what we find there. If there is any value in the statements from which I shall quote, you will find conditions are no better but possibly worse than they are shown in the statements I have given concerning the city of Vancouver. In the October number of the Commerce of the Nation. A Magazine for Business Men, there is an article by Sir Arthur Shirley Benn, Bt., K.B.E., M.P., president of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce of the British Empire. Speaking of world conditions. Sir Arthur Benn says:

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

Nothing is more depressing than to survey-today the markets of the world. Everywhere one is faced by the same steady contraction,- not of potential demand but of the ability to purchase. According to the economic committee of the League of Nations between twenty million and twenty-five million persons in the world are now without work, and the value of international trade is only one-half or perhaps less than half, what it was in the first quarter of 1929.

Yet we are told that we are taking advantage of improved conditions. He goes on further, and this is the cure for unemployment that was presented to us in 1930:

Ever growing tariff walls for some time disguised the true situation. Everyone said: "If only we can reduce our cost of _ production then we can sell in spite of the tariff.

Yes, but they did not realize that in reducing the cost of production they were at the same time reducing the ability to purchase. He continues:

The departure of the United Kingdom from the gold standard and the rapid worsening of the crisis during the last few months have at last convinced many people that there is some deeper underlying cause. Of course, Sir Arthur Benn made -that last statement without knowing the temper of those on the government side of the house. At least, they have shown no indication of being aware that there are deeper underlying causes at the present moment than even tariffs can remove.

He goes on further; after quoting the figures of trade for most of the world, he says:

These figures are characteristic of the experience of the majority of countries in the empire and outside it. What was true of the United Kingdom's exports in 1931 was true of practically every other trade movement, and it is plain for all to see that the world position has become much worse in the first half of this year.

The world position includes that of Canada, and undoubtedly that has become much worse during the first half of this year.

The nations are in fact clearly heading for disaster unless something is done, and that very quickly.

Now that is the statement, not of a socialist, not of a communist, not of a soapbox orator, but of the president of the Federation of British Industries. And similar statements we have been making, not only this year and last year, but for many years, because we realize, on analysis of capitalistic production, that it carries within itself the germ of its own destruction, and that it would inevitably come to the position it is in at the present time.

Dealing with unemployment, I am quite convinced that it is a difficult question, and I am further convinced that it cannot be

definitely settled or abolished within the ambit of capitalistic society. Unemployment is as essential to capitalism as reserves of any other raw material. The difficulty now is that unemployment has come to such a stage that large numbers are definitely and continually unemployed, and therefore have to be fed out of the profits of industry. I am convinced that unemployed men cannot be adequately provided with either work or maintenance out of revenue raised by taxation, because through unemployment the created wealth from which taxes are raised is constantly diminishing, and on t'he other hand the number of unemployed is continually increasing. Under such conditions the time when we shall reach the limit of taxation is not far distant. I think then, if the government cannot say when business expansion is to begin, it should start immediately to organize the economic life of the dominion so as to provide work and maintenance without creating debt. The present handling of the unemployment situation is a disgrace to our Christian civilization. In a country that is almost overwhelmed with the magnitude of its production an ever-increasing number of our people are receiving less and less of the essential things of life. Now we are told that this is being done deliberately, in order that we may not "undermine that high courage, that resourcefulness, the ability of our citizens to emerge out of these conditions strengthened by trials as by fire."

However, that may be carried a little too far. I have here a report of a committee that was appointed by the Vancouver Council of Social Agencies in the earlier part of the year. This is an organization of business men, men who have given attention not only to business questions but to social questions as well. They make suggestions in connection with the unemployed that I would ask hon. members, and particularly the government members, to take note of. In formulating their recommendations the committee said they had been guided by the following considerations :

(1) That the majority of homeless men dealt with are at present not of the vagrant or hobo class, and in normal times work whenever work is available; (2) that the proportion of professional beggars or derelicts amongst them is small; (3) that there is a real danger of members of the first class becoming members of the second.

I would like to draw that to the attention of the house and say that reducing the amount of relief in order to increase the courage of the unemployed may have that very effect, and that to increase their courage may be very dangerous to the existing order of things.

The Address-Mr. Maclnnis

(4) That the first class are integral parts of our economic structure, and the second are social and economic liabilities.

Now I wish to make further brief quotations from this report:

Your committee is of the opinion that in general the attitude of the unemployed in these most difficult times has been worthy of much commendation, and that it is the part of wisdom that those in authority should treat them in such a way as to maintain and strengthen them in their fortitude and courage by kind and intelligent interest in their needs.

But they are not getting that kind and intelligent interest.

Notwithstanding your committee is of the opinion that the temper of the unemployed and their attitude to society as a whole "will become increasingly violent and anti-social if those immediately responsible for caring for them treat them in such a way that the unemployed feel that they must in their own interest be antagonistic and grasping rather than cooperative and anxious to help themselves in any way possible.

I would like respectfully to draw that to the attention of the government.

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UFA

Edward Joseph Garland

United Farmers of Alberta

Mr. GARLAND (Bow River):

Who is

that signed by?

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IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. MacINNIS:

Signed by the executive

director of the Vancouver Council of Social Agencies.

The Prime Minister in his address on Monday evening referred with righteous indignation to communists and socialists and soapbox orators. I will quote his words:

There may be scattered throughout the country soap-box orators, communists and socialists who will endeavour to arouse the passions and prejudices of the people who will carry to them the tale of new nostrums and remedies that will cure all the economic evils of the day.

Now surely, in the short space of two years the Prime Minister himself has not forgotten the promises he made during the election of 1930. Who offered the nostrums at that time,

I would like to know? And the proof positive that these were nostrums is seen in the result. As a matter of fact, the Prime Minister promised everything-work for all who wanted it, bridges and highways, railways and waterways, pensions for everyone-and those were only a few of the things that he promised. Let me tell him that the Socialist party never promised anybody anything. We have simply tried to analyze society as we have found it, and we have pointed out to the people that it is they who produce the wealth of the world, and that there is no reason except their owm stupidity why they should not own it; and that, Mr. Speaker, we shall continue to do whether or not it meets with the approval of

the Prime Minister. Furthermore, we have always assigned the same cause for unemployment and for most of the other economic ills which afflict human society-that is, capitalism. But the Prime Minister's reasons for the economic conditions which confront this country change with the times. In 1930 the conditions were caused by Liberal misrule. Let me quote his own words, taken from the Montreal Gazette of June 27th. He said:

Unemployment has become "a national plot)!ciit in Canada. It is the direct result of nine years of unsound economic policies applied by Liberals under Premier King.

Not only did he give that as the cause for unemplojunent that year, but he went further and pointed out what was the first duty of a Canadian government. He said:

-and the King government cannot escape the charge of having neglected to realize that the nrst duty of the Canadian government is to provide work for Canadians.

I would like to ask this question: Is it the first duty of the Canadian government to provide work for Canadians only at a time when there is a small number of unemployed and not when there is a very great number? If to provide work for Canadians is the first duty of the Canadian government, surely it is very much more imperative to-day to provide work than it was in 1930, and I would suggest that the Prime Minister and his government seem to be falling down in discharging what the Prime Minister himself said was the first duty of a Canadian government.

In 1931, according to the Prime Minister, our economic conditions in Canada were the result of world-wide conditions. In 1932, in the spring session, the Prime Minister said that our conditions were caused by Great Britain going off the gold standard.

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UFA

Edward Joseph Garland

United Farmers of Alberta

Mr. GARLAND (Bow River):

And Russia.

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IND

Angus MacInnis

Independent Labour

Mr. MacINNIS:

Of course, Russia was always a cause. I was wondering before I came down to Ottawa for this session what cause the Prime Minister would assign this year.

I knew it would not be the same as in other years. I now find that the cause is psychological. When I heard him say that, I was reminded of a story I heard of a woman and her little son who, walking through a field, saw a goat coming towards them. The young lad got behind his mother's skirts, and she said to him, "Jimmie, I am ashamed of you. You know that that goat won't hurt you." "Yes, mother," the little boy replied, "I know that the goat won't hurt me, and you know it, but the goat does not know it." Well, if the cause is psychological, as the Prime Minister

The Address-Mr. McIntosh

says, we do not know it and we cannot realize it so long as there is an abundance of the means of life in this country.

The group to which I owe allegiance in this house has always pointed out that our economic conditions are the result of the system under which we are living, and consequently that we cannot expect any improvement in those conditions until we have a change in that system. I would like in this connection to quote very briefly from an authority of which the Prime Minister himself approves, because in quoting from him last year the Prime Minister said:

That is the firm and considered conviction of one, who having had perhaps greater opportunities than any other, being in the very centre of the world movement, is able to express an opinion of value.

Sir Arthur Salter is the authority to whom he was referring and from whom I now wish to quote. In his recent book, Recovery-The Second Effort-at page 239 Sir Arthur Salter says:

The defects of the capitalist system have been increasingly robbing it of its benefits. They are now threatening its existence. A period of depression and crisis is one in which its great merit, the expansion of productive capacity under the stimulus of competitive gain, seems wasted: and its main defect, an increasing

inability to utilize productive capacity fully and to distribute what it produces tolerably, is seen at its worst. And, in the mood of desperation caused by impoverishment and unemployment, the challenge of another system becomes more formidable. No one can expect that even if we get through now without disaster, we can long avoid social disintegration and revolution on the widest scale if we have only a prospect of recurring depressions, perhaps of increasing violence.

He goes on:

We have before us only the alternatives of collective leadership, collective control, or chaos -not, indeed, quite mutually exclusive; for in practice we shall have something of all three. We must do our best to eliminate the third, and make the best mixture we can of the first two. For this is no simple choice between two alternatives: "Hands off industry by the politician" or "Leave it to the government"; "private enterprise" or "state control"; "capitalism" or "communism." We evade our intricate and complex task if we think it can be solved by slogans instead of reason.

All that we have been asking is that we apply reason and intelligence to the economic conditions of the day. The Prime Minister tells us-he stated at the opening of the economic conference-that we can have no national economic plan in this country because it affronts our ideas of individual rights and liberty. However, I would like to point this out, that every imperial economic conference and every international economic conference

or any other economic conference that may be called is an attempt to arrive at some conclusion which may be carried out by some plan. If, after we have come to such a conclusion, we leave the functioning of the economic factors in our economic life to the whim and caprice of private individuals who will manipulate our productive system for their own gain, we can have nothing and we can expect nothing but the chaos which we find at the present moment.

Mr. CAMERON R. McINTOSH (North Battleford): Mr. Speaker, in rising to continue the debate on the address in reply to the speech from the thrcne and the amendment thereto, may I say that the present speech from the throne is very much like the ones we have had from this government from year to year. I understand that constitutionally the Prime Minister has to take the responsibility for writing the throne address, and after that has been done, according to modern constitutional practice it is submitted to the cabinet sitting collectively. That submission, according to history, is usually made in the cockpit, or the treasury department, as we call it. After the legislative portions of the speech have been settled and the causes of summoning parliament have been thus stated, compliments and congratulations and advice to members are linked up with the main reasons for convoking parliament. We have heard that in days gone by the speech from the throne was sometimes read twice by the sovereign. But I could not think it would be necessary to read this one twice; I think perhaps once would be enough. We might also say that the speech from the throne is simply an exchange of courtesies between the crown and parliament, and when we say that and say it contains causes for the summoning of the House cf Commons and gives hon. members an idea concerning the legislation to be presented to parliament during the session, we have summed up in a few words the importance of the address, so far as it concerns this parliament and the Canadian people. Our effectiveness in parliament depends on what we do with legislation mentioned in the address and cur attitude towards the outstanding problems of nationhood. If we do what ought to be done, then the summoning ol parliament and the work done in the house will be a credit to us. If as hon. members in this chamber we do not carry out that duty, we are not acting squarely towards our electors or towards other parts of the Dominion.

There are really three main divisions in the speech from the throne each of which is of imnortance nationally. First we have

The Address-Mr. McIntosh

those sections relating to timely legislative measures effective within the country. Second, there is that part of the address dealing with an important empire question; another part concerns an international problem of some significance. Those portions of the address which bring before our minds the important business of purely Canadian legislation to be considered are the report of the royal commission on railways and transportation, the committee appointed by order in council to consider the operation of the pension act, the question of unemployment, the harvest and crop failure conditions in western Canada, the redistribution bill, and the extension of Canadian bank charters for one year.

The empire question, one of special significance which is to be considered, analyzed and -if we think it important enough-ratified, consists of the agreements drafted at the Imperial economic Conference held in Ottawa last summer. The international problem to be dealt with during the session when the house reassembles after the New Year, concerns the international waterways. That matter however, may not be considered for a number of years.

As I have said, the speech from the throne sets forth certain compliments, congratulations and advice to hon. members of the house. In that section of the document, we have an expression of view given to the effect that although the depression is weighing heavily upon all classes in the community, there are definite signs that the acuteness of the condition is disappearing. Mr. Speaker, I think that is hardly correct. Some hon. members may believe the depression is disappearing, but it may be disappearing in only very small proportions. For instance, we say that all the land is moving seaward, that there is an imperceptible soil drift towards the sea, that the silt of the maritime provinces, central Canada, the prairies, and the mountains is slipping slowly but steadily towards the sea. That is perfectly true. Taking a long range view of the matter, we find the statement is a fact. That is admitted by those who study geogology and geography in a comprehensive manner. We know, however, that so far as the gigantic upheaval in the mountainous section is concerned, the change is taking place very slowly. In the western region of Canada are the Rocky mountains, that section of our country which forms an important economic problem, affecting the freight rates of both railway companies. So far as differential freight rates are concerned, Canada would be better served if those mountains FMr. McIntosh.]

disappeared much more quickly than their present motion will allow.

The same thought may be applied to the condition of unemployment, an upheaval of an economic character. To say that the upheaval, although acute, is disappearing, and not be able to prove that it is disappearing, does not mean very much-nothing in fact. In Canada, unemployment is still a very important problem, and it will require all the ability of the Canadian people to cope with it, to solve it, and to bring relief to thousands upon thousands of our workless in the immediate future.

The speech from the throne contains a further statement that the government members in the house-I believe it refers to them, because they are in the majority-have followed a policy of retrenchment and constructive development. I fail to see where there has been any such policy of retrenchment. During the last year the national debt of Canada has not been retrenched; on the contrary, there is an addition to it of over $100,000,000. That is not retrenchment. Retrenchment. is a Liberal policy; throughout history it has been a Liberal principle. The Liberal party has stood for retrenchment, peace and reform, and when we talk about retrenchment, there must be facts to back up our statements. It may be that retrenchment carried to an advanced degree, would not at the present time be a wise policy. Aside from that, however, I am really challenging the statement contained in the speech from the throne, and stating that it is not according to fact.

Further, I fail to see where there has been any constructive development. Certainly I can see plenty of destructive development. Then, towards the end of the speech from the throne there is the statement that our financial structure has strength, our agricultural industry has resourcefulness, and our industry has integrity. Were I writing that paragraph, I should admit, of course, that our financial structure has strength. In one sense of the W'ord, it has stood the strain. I do not wish hon. members to think that I do not challenge certain aspects of our financial structure, but I wish at the same time to leave the impression that as a Canadian I am thankful it has stood the strain and storm of economic depression. Hon. members on this side, however, do not admit that it is perfect; we do not admit that it cannot be modified in such a way as to be more beneficial to the citizens of Canada. Instead of referring to the resourcefulness of agriculture,

The Address-Mr. McIntosh

and the integrity of industry, I should have referred to the integrity of agriculture and the resourcefulness of industry, because we know that industry has been resourceful. Industry has always been resourceful in getting more and more protection; it has always been anxious to get greater tariff privileges from the government, and it has not been willing to stand on its own legs and fight out its own battles like those men and women who have been engaged in agriculture since confederation. So, if there is any integrity in our industrial structure in Canada, I should say that integrity belongs to that great industry of agriculture-to the men and women on the land.

Then at the close of the speech from the throne we find the Prime Minister, through the representative of the king, telling the people of Canada that the Canadian people possess qualities of unity, of fortitude, of cooperation and of faith. We know they have; we know that if they had not had those qualities the history of Canada would not read as it does today. They have stood nobly by, and developed the Dominion, and it is upon those qualities we will depend in years to come. I should say that statement, even in a speech from the throne, would be all right if we were governmentally to grasp the significance of those qualities. I wonder if hon. members realize the significance of the prayer of the Prime Minister as it appears in the closing paragraph of the speech from the throne, a paragraph in which he commends Canada to divine Providence. While passing the Y.M.C.A. in this city this morning, I noticed a signboard which reminded me of the reference to faith as it appears in the speech from the throne. That sign stated that faith created work, and industry-that means that it creates business, progress and prosperity-and that prayer of the right kind will call down the blessings of Providence. The signboard stated further that love was a worker of miracles. The thought occurred to me that probably the Prime Minister had missed the most important quality. We see that he has touched upon cooperation, fortitude, unity, and the capacity of the Canadian people; he even resorted to terms of supplication on behalf of Canada. But, he did not mention that great quality of lovecharity the opposite of exploiting greed. Because of the lack of the quality of love interprovincially and otherwise, between capital and labour, between agriculture and every one of the other industries of Canada, and

between this government and the people of Canada-because this government is not animated by those sterling qualities of faith and prayer and love-we find that the speech from the throne is politically sterile. And if we scan that speech to find out what we are legislatively going to do this fall and after Christmas, I think we shall come to the conclusion that apart from a railway bill and some trade agreements which we have been called upon to ratify there is not much of a program before us.

May I now compliment the mover and seconder of the address in reply to the speech from the throne. The mover comes from a western riding, the constituency of Athabaska, which borders my own riding to the northwest; and in extending him this compliment I may say that I was pleased to know that a young member of the Conservative party from western Canada had been honoured in being called upon to move the address. We are told in history that the mover of the address in reply to the speech from the throne must belong to the landed interest, and it is in keeping with precedent in the old land that the seconder should belong to the commercial and mercantile classes; and they are supposed to be in full dress or uniform when delivering their orations. But as I looked across the floor when our friends, the hon. member from the western riding and the hon. gentleman from a Quebec riding, were respectively moving and seconding the address in reply to the speech from the throne, I did not observe that they were in full dress or uniform. I did notice, however, that their speeches, when I read them afterwards, were in full Conservative garb. They were wholly yea, entirely in Conservative uniform, and they were certainly voicing sentiments in behalf of the Conservative party in Canada whether or not they spoke for the people in each of their constituencies in western and eastern Canada. I have wondered since why it is that, following the eloquent speeches to which we listened from the mover and the seconder of the address, hon. gentlemen to the right of Mr. Speaker have done nothing; they have not contributed to the debate since the two hon. gentlemen spoke the other day. Even yesterday, when the imperial trade treaties were brought down, there did not seem to be any enthusiasm on the part of hon. gentlemen opposite, and since parliament assembled a week ago today we have seen largely empty benches across the way. Indeed, about the only speeches we have had from that side have been from the Prime Minister and from the mover and seconder of the address in reply

The Address-Mr. McIntosh

to the speech from the throne. I trust that from now on there will be a change and that hon. gentlemen opposite will tell the people of Canada just what they think about this speech from the throne. I hope that they will give us some assurance that efficient and up to date legislation may be expected from the party they support, though silently, on behalf of the Canadian people.

If I may pass now from discussing the utterance of the representative of His Majesty in Canada, may I state that in 1930 the Conservative party electorally went to the people of Canada and, in an agricultural sense, said they stood for four important policies. One was the fostering and development of the live stock, dairy and agricultural industry. That was one objective they had. Now, Mr. Speaker, when you put forward an objective you are expected to stand by it through thick and thin or give a reason for your departure from it.

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An hon. MEMBER:

We are doing it.

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LIB

Cameron Ross McIntosh

Liberal

Mr. McINTOSH:

Before I get through I

will show you just how you are doing it. The second policy for which they said they stood was the stabilization cf economic conditions and freedom from the manipulation of tariffs at home or abroad. Fancy that. The third policy they enunciated in this connection was the development of interprovincial trade and the finding of foreign markets. Then, as a climax to the eight pledges they gave the people of Canada, they said that there would be protective compensating adjustments to make these policies beneficial to all parts of Canada.

Here we have four definite pledges which the Conservative party gave to the people of Canada in 1930 two years ago. They appealed to the people, and the Canadian electorate took them at their word and sent them back to power, to occupy the seats of the mighty. What are the facts now? The hon. member for Athabaska, when moving the address in reply to the speech from the throne a few days ago, waxed eloquent about the amount of trade we were carrying cn, the amount of wheat and barley wTe were selling, the amount of live stock and so forth. But, Mr. Speaker, quantity of trade is never the important thing; the important thing in trade is always this, that you must have not only quantity but price. If you get the one without the other you are net getting very much, and I am afraid that we are having quantity of trade to-day without corresponding price; and not even quantity, when you analyze the figures for the country as a whole, because in 1929, we had $2,650,000,000 of external trade,

which in 1930 had slipped somewhat and in 1931 had gone down to a little over SI,500,-000,000; while at the present time the total is not more than $1,000,000,000. So that we find the total trade of the country is being shot to pieces. Consequently, from the standpoint of trade, our efforts have been a dire failure during the last two years.

And what about price? Let me give the wholesale prices of farm products from 1926 up to the present time, quoting in this regard the information I have obtained from the Bureau of Statistics. In 1926 the base was 100; in 1927 it was 102-it was going up- in 1929 it was 100, and in 1931 it had dropped to 56. That was the year after our friends came into power; the same gentlemen who were going to find us markets and get us prices. The year after they came into power, down went the prices of farm products to 56, and in 1932, in June, the figure was 47 and in July 48, having gone up merely one point.

There you have the sorry tale, so far as farm products are concerned of Conservative policy. We have a drop of about 60 per cent in the value of farm products. We must therefore have a great increase in outside trade and price to make up the amount of money and the volume of international business which we were enjoying in this country a few years ago. We have not the volume now, nor have we the prices; in both respects we are worse off. The regrettable consequence is a deepening of the depression.

What about field products? According to information from the Bureau of Statistics, in 1926 the base was 100, and in 1931 wholesale prices had dropped to less than 48, and also less than 48 in 1932.

The next item is animal products, which along with farm and field products cover the whole ambit of what the farmer has to sell. The index numbers for the wholesale price of animal products in various years are as follows:

1926 100

1928 114

1930 102

1931 77

The drop in the wholesale prices of animal products has been from 102 two years ago down into the 60's and 70's at the present time. How can this country be financed nationally, how can we progress as a dominion when such conditions prevail? I do not think the Conservative party can find anything over which to rejoice in these figures. They are serious.

In dealing with this economic picture it is only fair that both sides should be given. I

The Address-Mr. McIntosh

have shown how the prices of what the farmer has to sell have dropped. I shall now show the big declines in raw and finished products as far as the manufacturers are concerned. The percentages of decrease in certain raw products are as follows:

Per cent

Hides and skin 53

Wool 42

Scrap iron 40

Raw cotton 47

Raw silk 47

The following decreases occurred in finished products:

Per cent

Boots and shoes 8

Clothing 14

Hardware 4

Cotton fabrics 15

Silk fabrics 13

The finished products show an average drop of only 11 per cent while there has been a drop of from 50 to 60 per cent in the price of the commodities the farmer has to sell. Mathematically, the farmer is beaten; he is beaten four to one. The great industry of agriculture has had the foundation knocked out from under it and that is why we are to-day still in the midst of a serious depression. The fact is that the depression is now worse than it was three years ago. This startling fact must be faced by the government and people of this country if we are to prepare, as we should prepare, for a bright and prosperous future.

Reference is made in the speech from the throne to the Imperial conference held in Ottawa last summer. It is important to realize that this was not the first conference held in this country. If my memory serves me, I believe the first conference was held back in 1894. At that time, the conferences were called colonial conferences. Even to-day some little Canadians refer to Canada as a colony when in fact we are a sovereign dominion of the crown. The term "colonial" has disappeared so we have now the name Imperial conference. The colonial conferences were three in number, one in 1887, one in 1894 and one in 1902, while other conferences, empire in significance, have been held from 1894 down to the present time. These different conferences dealt with trade and commerce, with preferences, with the development of penny postage and telegraphic communications and other matters, the endeavour of Canada always being from Laurier's day to bind this country more closely to the motherland. At a later date we shall have an opportunity to discuss this last conference and the results thereof. After the house has

studied the different trade agreements and analyzed them from cover to cover, I hope we will be able to come to conclusions which will be of benefit to Canada in the upbuilding of her trade and bringing about a further constitutionally sound consolidation of the empire.

I do not mean that we should consolidate the empire in an economic sense; we have been fighting for a hundred years to bring about a decentralization of the empire politically and constitutionally and I do not think for one moment we should throw away this heritage. These agreements should be studied very carefully and where something is found which may prove to be beneficial, we should stand behind them. If we find they are wrong in principle, in vision, we must be courageous and come out and tell the people of Canada. The debate on this conference should be one of the most momentous in the history of this country.

The speech from the throne refers also to the royal commission which was appointed to study the transportation problem. The report of this commission has been presented to the house, and the government has stated that a bill to ensure more effective and economical operation of the Canadian railways will be presented for consideration. It is intended that the operation of our railways shall be carried on upon the basis of fan-competition with the elimination of extravagant and harmful duplication of services.

In presenting my views on this question I may say that I speak largely for northern Saskatchewan. In a debate on an address in reply I believe we should confine ourselves as far as possible to constituency grievances and problems. Later on this session we shall have ample opportunity to discuss national, imperial and international problems. I shall leave any comments which I desire to make upon the report itself to a later date.

The two great railway systems operate in the constituency of North Battleford, but, during the last year there has been very little constructive railway development in that part of Canada. The Canadian Pacific Railway has built a line from Prince Albert to a point about 125 miles north of North Battleford called Meadow Lake upon which is operated a construction service. This company also has constructed another 35-mile link from a point southward at Med-stead, but no real service is being given. The Canadian Pacific Railway runs out of Saskatoon for about 100 miles to the southern part of the North Saskatchewan river. The end of this line is only about twenty miles out of North Battleford and no attempt has been

The Address-Mr. McIntosh

made to bridge the river or extend the line further northward into that great hinterland where to a large extent the hope of the future development of western Canada lies. During the last two or three years thousands of settlers have trekked into this country. Crop conditions were bad in the south and transportation facilities must be provided if these people are to have the hope of safety on the land for years to come. So we look forward to the time when the Canadian Pacific will extend its line from Meadow Lake westward across the Saskatche-wan-Alberta boundary and to the time when the Canadian Pacific from Saskatoon will enter North Battleford and continue north. It is building its system northward now and doing very well indeed.

We have the Canadian National system in that great territory too and I am not afraid to say this afternoon that I believe the North Battleford constituency, from an agricultural point of view, is equal to anything in Canada and only the fringe of its possibilities has yet been touched. But 'before that part of Canada and its extensions northward and westward will become what it ought to be- from North Battleford northwestward through Edmonton to the Pacific coast, through the great Peace River country, where in the years to come there will be great developments; the possibilities of that immense area being beyond comprehension-further railway facilities must be provided. What about the Canadian National in this part of northern Saskatchewan? We have two portions of the Canadian National system that ought to be finished and that are not finished. I am ready to challenge any man, I do not care where he is or who he is, as to why both of those roads ought not to have been finished last year or the year before and yet there has been nothing done, no constructive development in a railway sense, on one branch line or on the other. There has been on the other hand nothing but a policy of standing still and do nothing. For instance, one portion of the Canadian National railway system in that belt of country is the line from St. Walburg via Red Cross northwestward to Edmonton. Would you believe it, Mr. Speaker, that we have sixty-nine miles of that road all graded; that the ties are lying on both sides of the road, and although that grading has been done for going on a year, it has been impossible to get a foot of steel on that road during the past summer or indeed the last year. In that great belt of country along that road settlers have trekked for the last two or three years from the dry

belts of southern Saskatchewan and from other portions of western Canada. The crop there during the last year was immense, not only in wheat, but oats and barley, the wheat running from twenty-five to thirty bushels an acre. There are about a quarter of a million bushels of wheat in that country and yet that sixt3r-nine miles of road have not been steeled. We have the settlers forty, fifty and sixty miles from a railway. How are they going to get the wheat they have to market? They may take some of it by trucks during the fall months, but you can see it is a hard job. It takes out of the 30 cent wheat prices practically all that is in them when a farmer has his wheat sold-thus he has very little left. The people of that northern belt are expecting action on that railway. It is not a political question. I do not want to inject any politics into it. I want to stand for the united population of that part of northern Saskatchewan and to ask the Canadian National Railways, with the cooperation of the government, to see that redress is secured for those worthy men and women miles and miles beyond railway facilities, in order that they may be able to live and to take care of their families, and in order that they may have those railway facilities possessed by other less productive portions of the dominion. They have helped to pay for railway facilities elsewhere in Canada. Why should they not now have railway facilities especially where the country is opened up and where there is a profitable trade to be done? If I thought this railroad would not pay, I would not ask for it, but I know it will pay and I know every railway into that northern part of Saskatchewan has paid a profit at least equal to anything paid by the Canadian National system in western Canada. Therefore I would ask the government to take action and to do its best to see that that part of the road is steeled as early as possible and that the remaining part of the road to Edmonton is not only graded but steeled, thereby giving a new railway line between North Battleford and Edmonton, through a fine mixed farming portion of Canada, through a country with immense possibilities in a live stock and grain sense.

That is not all. We have another gap on part of the same road only about twenty miles farther south. There is a forty mile gap, part of it in Alberta and part in Saskatchewan from Paradise Hill westward. That gap should have been completed in 1932. The other part of the road through St. Walburg, Red Cross and Loon Lake on to Edmonton across the Beaver river and

The Address-Mr. Coote

through Flat Valley and Goodsoil districts ought to have been completed this year, but, it is not going to be. So you have two portions of the Canadian National system in "The North," which under all the circumstances, ought to have been completed this year but which are not going to be completed this year, that will certainly be profitable lines and regarding which the people are at a loss to know' why action has not been taken and the grading and steeling completed.

There is another line from North Battle-ford, northward through Medstead, to Meadow' Lake, 125 miles. Part of it, as I said, from Medstead to Meadow Lake belongs to the Canadian Pacific and the other part is a dual line. But we have what? We have a partial service on that road north and south and we ought to have a full service. As I understand the matter, there is an agreement to be signed by the Canadian Pacific and the Canadian National; but it has never been signed; there has been nothing done; it has been hanging fire for months, for over a year, and as yet there is no through service on the line. But there is no doubt but that it will be a paying line and until the two roads can get together and cooperate with one another that through service will not be possible. Combined action should be taken on this branch line at once.

What about the question of unemployment which is next mentioned, I think, in the speech from the throne? We had the statement made by the government two years ago that unemployment was the direct result of unsound economic policies on the part of the King government.

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An hon. MEMBER:

Hear, hear.

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LIB

Cameron Ross McIntosh

Liberal

Mr. McINTOSH:

Let the hon. "hear, hear" and his party accept the consequences of unemployment as we have it today. It was also stated that not only was it on account of the unsound economic policies of the King government but it was because the King government did not pay attention to its first duty, to give work to the Canadian people, to those who need work.

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An hon. MEMBER:

Hear, hear.

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LIB

Cameron Ross McIntosh

Liberal

Mr. McINTOSH:

An hon. member says, "hear, hear." Let [DOT] us examine the facts and see what his, "hear, hear" means when translated into Conservative policy. On August 1 the employment figure wTas 86; on July 1 it was 88; on August 1, 1931, it was 105. In other words, in a year employment in Canada has dropped from 105 to 86, or a difference of 19 points. That proves what? If employment is on the decrease, it must mean that

unemployment is on the increase, and so it is. On August 1, 1932, according to statistics, the unemployment figure was 2T8; on July 1, 1932, it was 21-9 and on August 1, 1931, a year ago it was 16-2. In other words employment in Canada has dropped during the past year and that explains why we have more than seven hundred thousand unemployed in this country. The Conservative government was elected to do away with unemployment. I read what it said about the policy of the King government. The Conservative government came into power; they have been in power for two years and what is the result? Unemployment is growing, is getting worse. Does the house know what is done with men who come to North Battleford and other points and who are unemployed? Does the house know how their much vaunted provincial and municipal policy works out there? The men are sent to Prince Albert and the crown is asked to feed and take care 'of them while the Conservative party, which is in power, is doing nothing-nothing but repeating "hear, hear." That condition of affairs exists all over Canada, and we can only come to the conclusion that in face of the serious unemployment in this country Conservative policies are not adequate to the situation, that they have not got the driving force to solve this unemployment problem, and that if they continue in the future as they have in the past this country will be wrecked economically and industrially.

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October 13, 1932