July 1, 1919 (13th Parliament, 2nd Session)

UNION

George Brecken Nicholson

Unionist

Mr. G. B. NICHOLSON:

Canadian wool. The production cost of that article in 1919 was $10.50 a dozen, but the consumer is paying for the article $30 a dozen, or $2.50 for each article, a direct increase of 100 per cent in the spread between the cost of production and the cost to the consumer. These cases might be cited indefinitely, but I have just pointed to two in order to emphasize the point I wish to make; that there is a real necessity for some machinery which will provide that abuses of this kind may be immediately investigated.
I think I speak the mind of most of the men who have been working with me for nearly four weeks on the committee when I say that it took us a very short time to come to the definite conclusion that something else besides a Parliamentary inquiry is necessary. We might keep on forever disclosing these things, but unless something is placed in the hands of some one that will make action possible, these inquiries will do more harm than good, because they simply disclose the condition and create unrest without making any effort to supply a remedy. I cannot conceive oi anything that would be very much worse.
The whole matter is now before the House to be dealt with as the House deems best. My own judgment is that we could do nothing better before the session comes to a close, in an effort to allay the unrest that is sapping the very foundations of our national life, than to make the people feel that there is at their disposal a tribunal of some kind that has the power to act, and will do so. There is no question that the personnel of such a tribunal will determine its value, but our experience with the Railway Board has been of such a nature that we might with a great deal of confidence look forward to the accomplishing of much good in this country by such a board as we have suggested.

Topic:   HIGH COST OF LIVING.
Subtopic:   ADOPTION OF THE ISPEOIAL REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE MOVED.
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