April 1, 1902 (9th Parliament, 2nd Session)


Arthur Samuel Kendall



And against themselves, as my hon. friend (Sir. Edwards! says. But, speaking from a maritime province standpoint, I say that retaliation is to-day probably the worst thing that could happen to us. We are looking for extended markets. We want to send our coal, and also our fish into the American market Furthermore, I would point out to the hon. gentlemen, that while retaliation may agree with our feelings it would probably be poor policy for Canada as a whole.
I read an article not long ago, I think in the ' Morning Citizen ' of this city, which to me, appeared very attractive. It pointed out that, by an imposition of a large duty on pulp wood and on paper, it could be arranged to draw the whole of the pulp and paper industry from the United States into Canada, and that industry would be worth here, probably $50,000,000 annually. I say that on the face of it that was an enticing proposition, and one which would well merit the sober attention of any government, provided there were not behind it serious difficulties. I have not the figures at hand, but I would like to point out generally that, during the last three or four years, the export of pulp wood from Canada has not, increased with anything like the degree of rapidity that the export of pulp has increased. It is evident that the opportunities for the manufacture of pulp in this country are so great that, without tariffs or without any government meddling at all, pulp manufacture is goint to be established in this country on a large scale. But I wish to point out where the United States could strike us back, and that in a way that would make every hon. gentleman representing an Ontario constituency come to the government and demand that the duty on pulp wood be removed. There is no duty on bard coal. But supposing that, in a spirit of retaliation, the American government-put a duty of a dollar or two a ton on hard coal imported into Ontario. And if you have no duty on your coke, yet you want great quantities of coke, and will need still larger quantities. The duty on slack coal, I think amounts to only three or four cents a ton. The American government could arrange so that every ton of coal should come into Ontario under an export duty of two or three dollars a ton. In my opinion those who suggest retaliation are not wise. And I would point out also, that, at this juncture the sober, level-headed men of the United States, not only of New England from Boston to New York, but many in Chicago, and many in our border

cities are at work educating the people of tlie American Republic. And I think we see some signs that, perhaps in the not very remote future-I admit that we have to be patient for the time-there may be an opportunity for this country to establish better business relations with our neighbours to the south. I listened carefully to the speech of my hon. friend from Pictou (Mr. Bell). I always listen carefully to that hon. gentleman's speeches. They contain, as a rule, a great deal of good, sound material; and, even when his argument is, as I think, wrong, I admire the ingenuity of it. But, on this side, we are indebted to that hon. gentleman for several statements, statements of immense importance as coming from that side of the House. In the first place, if I understood him correctly, the hon. member for Pictou said, in effect, that, if his party came into power he would consider it injudicious to remove the preference. I think he must have given more attention to the business situation in England than most of the hon. gentlemen opposite have done. He made a statement to the effect that there was not the slightest doubt that free trade was the best policy for Great Britain. And, best or not best, he pointed out that the public men of that country, without regard to party affiliations, were almost a unit in favour of free trade, that, in fact, not a man over there with a reputation to jeopardize would venture to advocate a policy of protection. I think that the hon. member for Pictou (Mr. Bell) must have given some attention to statements made by public men in Great Britain. Now, we have so often heard that Great Britain was only waiting for an opportunity to go back to the protective policy, that, at the risk of being tedious, I am going to read a page or two from statements made by leading public men of Great Britain. Mr. Chamberlain, speaking in 1896 of a proposal that a duty should be placed on certain imports from the colonies for the benefit of the colonies, said :
It involves the imposition of a duty-it may be a small one, but it is a duty-upon food and upon raw material, and whatever may be the result of imposing such a duty the tendency is to increase the cost of living, which would intensify the pressure upon the working classes of this country, and it would also have a tendency to increase the cost of production, which would put us, of course, in a worse position than now in competition with foreign countries
in neutral markets The advatage
offered is not enough to induce this country to take the certain loss and the possible risk which would be involved in revising altogether its present commercial policy .... The second point, which is much more important, is that our foreign trade is so gigantic in proportion to the foreign trade of the colonies that the burden of an arrangement of this kind would fall with much greater weight on the United Kingdom than upon our fellow subjects in the colonies.
I think, therefore, we may very fairly ask them to better their offer.

Full View