March 11, 1941

NAT

Grote Stirling

National Government

Mr. STIRLING:

Such as O.B.E.?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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?

James Augustine Power

Mr. POWRR:

I imagine an O.B.E. could be granted in Canada.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

Karl Kenneth Homuth

National Government

Mr. HOMUTH:

I do not wish to interrupt, but in view of the fact that these awards are made by his majesty, how would someone earning a meritorious award in Canada get that award from his majesty, unless there was some means of communication or recommendation from Canada?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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LIB

Charles Gavan Power (Associate Minister of National Defence; Minister of National Defence for Air; Minister of National Defence for Air and Associate Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. POWER:

I think that means of communication exists, although possibly we have not gone through the procedure.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

We have not exercised it.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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LIB

Charles Gavan Power (Associate Minister of National Defence; Minister of National Defence for Air; Minister of National Defence for Air and Associate Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. POWER:

I have no doubt at all that if it were decided by a commanding officer or a general officer commanding or a chief of staff that someone should be recommended for recognition for gallantry in Canada, some deed which normally at this time on the other side of the ocean would bring the George Cross, that recommendation would come through the usual channels to the minister, then to council, and then from council through External Affairs to the proper authorities on the other side.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

Richard Burpee Hanson (Leader of the Official Opposition)

National Government

Mr. HANSON (York-Sunbury):

It would be only a matter of procedure.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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LIB

Charles Gavan Power (Associate Minister of National Defence; Minister of National Defence for Air; Minister of National Defence for Air and Associate Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. POWER:

Yes; to my mind it is only a matter of procedure.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

Karl Kenneth Homuth

National Government

Mr. HOMUTH:

Why could Canada not establish her own orders?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Charles Gavan Power (Associate Minister of National Defence; Minister of National Defence for Air; Minister of National Defence for Air and Associate Minister of National Defence)

Liberal

Mr. POWER:

I am glad my hon. friend has brought that up. I thought the information in connection with that point might be of interest to the committee. I had to look it up on one occasion, and I came across information which I believed would be of interest at this time. Away back in 1866 Viscount Monck in a dispatch to Lord Carnarvon, discussing the state of loyalty or otherwise of the provinces, suggested that it might be a good thing to found a Canadian order of chivalry. I should like to quote:

The want of the material in a new country for creating an hereditary aristocracy is one of the great difficulties in the way of applying the institutions of the British constitution to our colonies, and yet, without this or some substitute for it, we are in fact training up the minds of our colonists not to the ideas of monarchy but of republicanisms.

Then he goes on to discuss the whole matter, and concludes:

The plan which I would suggest for your lordship's consideration to meet the want to which I have referred would be the institution

War Appropriation Bill

of an order of knighthood for British North America on the model of the Order of the Star of India, to be called "the Order of St. Lawrence."

This matter was still further discussed no longer ago than during the course of the last war. Some of my hon. friends will recollect that there was in England a sub-militia council set up under the jurisdiction of the minister of militia of that day, Sir Sam Hughes. The members of that council were:

Major-General J. W. Carson,

Major-General J. C. MacDougall, C.M.G.,

Brigadier-General F. S. Meighen,

Colonel George P. Murphy,

Colonel Frank A. Reid,

Lieutenant-Colonel James G. Ross,

Major G. D. Oulster, Secretary.

Colonel McRae appears to have been a member of it at one time, also.

We also find here a minute from the meeting of the acting sub-militia council for overseas Canadians, held at Cleveland House, St. James square, London, on September 8, 1916. It reads:

Correspondence in connection with creating a Canadian order along the lines of the Order of the Star of India was brought up and discussed at the meeting, and it was moved by General Carson and seconded by General MacDougall that General Carson should write the Hon. the Minister of Militia and Defence, Canada, stating that the sub-militia council would recommend that he, the hon. the Minister of Militia and Defence, consider the question of creating a Canadian order after the style of "The Star of India" and with just as strict regulations and rules. This order to be known as "The Order of the Beaver and Maple Leaf" or, "The Star of Canada."

Therefore I am glad my hon. friend gave me an opportunity to put on Hansard what has happened before with respect to the desirability of establishing in Canada an order of chivalry. I have not any doubt whatsoever but that means will be found to reward gallantly while in the face of the enemy, or in the course of active duty. With regard to the matter as to whether or not Canada should recommend to his majesty that we have orders of chivalry, I must say that I believe that this is a matter of higher policy to be settled probably in this house.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

I, too, wish to congratulate the Minister of National Defence on the comprehensive report he has given to-night. I am sure all hon. members will read it with a great deal of interest, and perhaps after reading it they will be in a position to ask for further information, which I am sure the minister will give.

I was also pleased to hear the remarks of the Minister of National Defence for Naval Services, and the Minister of National Defence for Air.

An article which appeared in the newspapers to-day relating to shipping prompts me to attempt to take the debate back to the discussion of a subject which was discussed at great length yesterday, namely, the subject of shipping. The article to which I refer stated that some twenty-nine ships, approximately 150,000 tons, had been sunk during the last week. To give an idea to hon. members of just what a colossal loss that is-and perhaps it is not greater than the loss we may suffer in the future-I would point out that in Canada to-day we are producing daily about 1,500 net tons of pig-iron, all in Ontario. A loss in one week of 150,000 tons is equivalent to the pig-iron that could be produced in this country in one hundred days. This gives us an idea of the menace we must provide against in these shipping losses.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin

Liberal

Mr. MARTIN:

That is a compelling

illustration.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

I think it should take

us all back to the subject before the committee, that is, what we can do to prosecute this war and to maintain the empire. Our shipping is of vital importance. The question is what we can do in the way of building ships in Canada. Yesterday we heard a number of good speeches on shipbuilding, one by the hon. member for Vancouver South (Mr. Green), one by the hon. member for Shelburne-Yarmouth-Clare (Mr. Pottier), one by my leader (Mr. Hanson) and one by my desk-mate, the hon. member for Royal (Mr. Brooks).

I am not competent to speak upon the matter raised by the hon. member for Shel-bume-Yarmouth-Clare. He referred to ships built partly of steel and partly of wood, and he states it is practicable to build this type of ship. If that is the case, then here is one way whereby ships can be built in large numbers on both our east and west coasts. There timber is available. My leader referred to a rolling mill in Nova Scotia which is not now in use. I assume this is due to the fact that all the steel production is under contract to the British government and is being shipped there just as rapidly as it is produced.

I do not know whether the Nova Scotia Steel company is able to obtain all the iron ore they require from Bell island, Newfoundland. I have been at Bell island and have seen how they take out iron ore from under the sea. They have good equipment for loading and are able to turn out many thousands of tons. If there is not sufficient iron ore available from this point, there are said to be ample supplies in the Hamilton river district in the Labrador. These are some of the best

War Appropriation Bill

deposits to be found in the world but they are still undeveloped. If the war continues for years, as it may, it may be found necessary to reopen the plate mill in Nova Scotia. If there is not sufficient ore available from Bell island, I would advise the government to consider obtaining supplies from the Hamilton river deposits.

Something has been said about building ships on both east and west coasts and numerous references have been made to Ontario. I see no reason for conflict between the east and the west and Ontario. We are nine provinces all united to do our best for Canada, and through Canada for the empire. It is quite true that steel plate is rolled only in Ontario, in one mill in the city of Hamilton. That mill has two large rolls and it is able to turn out steel in large quantities. I take pride-perhaps I should not-in the fact that in 1930 or 1931 I advocated in this bouse a duty on steel above 40 inches. This was to encourage the Hamilton mill to roll steel up to 78 inches. I believe the government of the day did protect steel up to 66 inches, and the Hamilton mill itself undertook bo roll up to 78 inches. Later on, I believe they considered rolling up bo 120 inches.

I am sure the fact that this steel is rolled in Hamilton has been of great help in our shipbuilding programme. There will soon be another mill opened in Hamilton, I believe in May. This mill will roll 40 inch plate, but this is the material used in constructing the smaller steel ships such as corvettes and so on. The minister has announced that some eighteen or twenty cargo ships are to be built in Canada, and then we have the statement in the press to-day that twenty-nine cargo ships were sunk in a week. I am convinced that this government should undertake to build, not eighteen cargo ships but 100 or 200. If the war lasts, as it apparently will, it will be imperative that we have ships. So far, the shipyards in England have not been destroyed. Most of them are located on the Clyde, Humber and Tyne, in the south of Scotland and the north of England. Perhaps it has been difficult for planes to fly that far with a heavy enough load, but it will be a sad day when they are able to do so and perhaps destroy these shipbuilding yards. Therefore it is all the more imperative that Canada should get into the shipbuilding business of both coasts. There are shipyards at Vancouver. Much of the steel used in these yards is shipped from Chicago, the plate rolled in Ontario being used there, too, and elsewhere. When the new Hamilton mill is in operation, I assume that a lot of plate produced there will be shipped to Vancouver.

IMr. MacNicol.]

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

Howard Charles Green

National Government

Mr. GREEN:

There are yards at Victoria as well.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

I should have said

British Columbia, because there are shipbuilding facilities at New Westminster and Burrard. The government should consider what has been said by hon. members for Nova Scotia and New Brunswick as well as by the hon. member for Vancouver South. Efforts should be made to build ocean cargo ships in both the east and the west. I might be asked, "Why not Ontario?" I do not believe that ocean cargo ships can be built economically in Ontario, and I have never advocated anything which was not economically sound. During the great war I understand a number of cargo ships were built in the vicinity of Detroit, then taken apart, shipped overland and reassembled, I believe in Florida. That would not be economical. If the government is planning to build cargo ships, they should be built in the east and the west. These ships can be built there and these provinces should be given something. I am not at all in accord with the idea of concentrating everything in one part of Canada.

I think the Ontario industrialist deserves unstinted praise for what he has done in this war by way of providing plants to build the equipment required in these ships as well as to produce other war munitions. Engines for ships are being built mainly in Montreal. At the present time the government is building three types of ships for war purposes, and it is now contemplating constructing ocean cargo boats. I repeat that these ocean cargo boats should be built on the Atlantic coast and on the Pacific coast. At least part of the steel will be rolled in Ontario and a lot of the other equipment can be provided by that province. In Ontario, as well as in other parts of Canada, the government is building fast power boats to provide protection against submarines and for other purposes. Quite a number of these will be built in the towns of Muskoka. Some will be built, I believe, on the western coast, at Prince Rupert and other centres, and perhaps some on the eastern coast. These are power boats, I understand, about 110 to 115 feet long.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin

Liberal

Mr. MARTIN:

There is some development at Owen Sound, is there not?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
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NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

These power boats go very fast. Then, in Ontario we are building corvettes and mine-sweepers. I have made a careful investigation in connection with minesweepers. Although the Minister of Munitions and Supply is not in his seat-he is working about twenty-four hours a day, doing several men's jobs, and we cannot expect him

War Appropriation Bill

to be here every minute-no doubt he will read what I am going to say and will, I believe, appreciate that for the building of mine-sweepers, steel is rolled about 54 and 56 inches wide, but upon arrival at the minesweeper plant it has to be sheared to 51 inches. I would suggest that if it is necessary that the government ship mine-sweeper steel, which is for the sides of the ships, east and west, it be sheared to the right length and width right in Ontario, because the extra freight is a big item to-day, and every possible dollar should be saved in construction and equipment. This is an all-out war. Not only will it take all our man-power, but it will take all our money besides.

I am glad to see that the Minister of Munitions and Supply is coming into the chamber. I have said, that I had not expected him to be here because he is doing so many men's jdbs, and he cannot be here all the time, but I am pleased that he has come in to hear something which I have been thinking. Even in the building of cargo ships, but more particularly in the building of corvettes and mine-sweepers, if the plates were shaped and drilled according to templets instead of one at a time, if the government would say to a particular producer of ships, "we want you to erect fifty corvettes and fifty minesweepers'. that would mean that in each case a large number of plates for the sides of these ships could be produced much more rapidly than is possible with only small contracts. I know, because I was for years in the boiler business, manufacturing boilers using steel of large dimensions, and in my time the individual plates for six boilers would be punched and drilled at the same time, very rapidly, and another six put on the same machines and so drilled. Perhaps 200 holes for rivets, more or less depending on the size of the plate, were made in this manner.

What I have seen of present production is not being carried on in that way, and I thought that in the reshaping of the minister's programme, as will probably be done when it is realized that the war will last for years, the minister should say to some one of these builders, "here is an order for fifty corvettes," or, "here is an order for fifty mine-sweepers," so that the producers could make them for less money than would be possible if they had just a few orders; they could so organize their production as to manufacture plate for the sides in multiple production. It could be done.

In like manner if, instead of a long time being taken to bend and shape the plate around, they could make the templets and the dies to produce the plate also bent in shape, as is desirable for multiple and rapid construction, considerable economies could be effected, but we could not expect them to do that if their plant received an order for not more than four or five ships; it would cost too much to make the necessary templets and dies. I have confidence in the minister to this extent, that if and when he decides to build ships in large numbers he, understanding thoroughly the production of these appliances, might induce the companies to manufacture under conditions of multiple production, as was done in the last war. In the United States ships were turned out almost as rapidly as sardine cans. All plates for particular parts of ships were made at the same time for scores and scores of vessels; and we shall have to get into that system too. That would apply to corvettes and mine-sweepers, and to other equipment.

I have heard some people condemn our shipbuilding programme as being behind schedule. I have heard the Minister of Munitions and Supply and the Minister of National Defence for Naval Services say that it is ahead of schedule. I doubt if it is, but I am not going to blame either minister on that account, because everybody who studies these things knows that after the battle of the Mediterranean it was necessary to make considerable changes in the designs of ship fittings.

The dropping of bombs by the German Stuka dive bombers alongside the ships rocked the Illustrious as though it were a cork in the water, and the effects were discovered when it reached Malta. It was learned on examination of the Illustrious, and by the effects of bombing on the cruiser which was sunk by the British themselves, what would have to be done in future interior construction. I will not elaborate on the effects of the bombs which had dropped all round the ship as well as on top of it; but after these ships had been shaken as the Illustrious was shaken by these tremendous bombs, engineers made a careful survey and found it necessary to recommend some changes in interior construction. I am not going to ask the minister to say that such changes have been carried out here, but if there has been any delay in the production of corvettes-I know that some have been launched-or of mine-sweepers, perhaps that is one of the reasons. Such a reason would carry weight with me. I am not going to condemn the minister if production has been retarded because so many things have entered into the construction of ships for the sea since the war broke out, and since engineers have surveyed what has happened to some of the boats which have been exposed to enemy action, changes have had to be made. I am sure I am right in that regard.

War Appropriation Bill

But, changes having been made, production should proceed rapidly. I have not any doubt that in due course, with yards organized east and west, as well as in Ontario, production will increase. In any event, this house, I am sure, will support the government, because party politics is not worth a fig in war time. It is an all-out war; we here are all Canadians and all British to assist in fighting this war; and if 100 million dollars are required to equip the yards and the mills. I for one, and I am sure everyone else, would be glad to vote whatever is required, because if we win the war we save all, and if we lose thewar we lose all. We might better lose a lot

in winning the war.

I think that is about all I have to say, except for one thing of which I have spoken before; I should like to say a word about it to the minister again. Adjacent to Windsor there is a big plant. It has its blast furnaces; there is a railway from the river to the plant, and there is a canal alongside built by thecompany up to the steel plant. It is a huge

plant; I have been in it and so have others. But it is now being used for a purpose for which it was not built; it is being used in part for small affairs connected, I believe, with machine guns of one kind or another. It is essentially a steel plant and a shipbuilding plant. I am not able to say who owns it, but I believe it is the Walkerville company-

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin

Liberal

Mr. MARTIN:

No; it is owned by

Dominion Steel. The hon. member is referring to the Ojibway plant?

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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NAT

John Ritchie MacNicol

National Government

Mr. MacNICOL:

Yes.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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LIB

Paul Joseph James Martin

Liberal

Mr. MARTIN:

It is an excellent plant.

Topic:   WAR APPROPRIATION BILL
Subtopic:   PROVISION FOR GRANTING TO HIS MAJESTY AID FOR NATIONAL DEFENCE AND SECURITY
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March 11, 1941