March 27, 1946 (20th Parliament, 2nd Session)

LIB

James Garfield Gardiner (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. GARDINER:

My hon. friend says "stopped thinking". They may do that in his party, but they do not in this. Thos,e of us who started early and^ kept right at the job of trying to convince the people of Canada that our policies are best for the country do not need to go around explaining our position. We do not need to try to convince the people that we have taken a certain position for the first time. We have

The Address-Mr. Coldmell
been taking the position which we take to-day with regard to farm policy and other matters for a very considerable period of time. That is the position we took during the period from 1921 down to 1929, which was the best period for agriculture that this country had experienced down to that time. Just as my hon. friends opposite in the short period of five years demonstrated that their policy was the worst possible policy for agriculture. So have we, since 1935, been working at the job with the same set of principles, with the same views with regard to agricultural methods and practices, demonstrated to the people of western Canada as well as to those of eastern Canada that we have arrived at the point where agriculture has passed the heights it rose to under the previous Liberal government. Even the leader of the opposition says that in the last three years agriculture has been in the best position it has ever been in, even back in the twenties. But he goes on to say even mpre than that; he says, "What we are worried about is the future." The only thing if he is concerned for agriculture that he needs to be worried about is whether anyone will ever put him in office.
This government with the policies which have been in effect during the last ten years, developed to fuller completion in the last five or six years and which are guaranteed by the agreements which were read yesterday by me and which will be submitted on grain later 'by the Minister of Trade and Commerce (Mr. MacKinnon) and by the further arrangements that will eventually be brought down will satisfy even some of the criticisms that have been made in this house. Some people may be sorry before it is all finished that they made the criticism they did. They may find that some of the things they proposed are not only already arranged for but are in position to be brought down in sufficient time to take care of what they are worrying about in connection with farm production and the condition of the farmer in the immediate future.
Therefore I say that in voting on this motion of want of confidence that is now proposed, the thing for this house to do, first, is to vote down the amendment in order that we may get on to the main motion and, then, vote the main motion through in order that this government may get on with the job of further improving agricultural conditions in this country.

Topic:   GOVERNOR GENERAL'S SPEECH
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