Léonard-David Sweezey TREMBLAY

TREMBLAY, The Hon. Léonard-David Sweezey

Personal Data

Party
Liberal
Constituency
Dorchester (Quebec)
Birth Date
April 16, 1896
Deceased Date
September 19, 1968
Website
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Léonard_Tremblay
PARLINFO
http://www.parl.gc.ca/parlinfo/Files/Parliamentarian.aspx?Item=055d7c35-7ddf-4f01-a2a6-7d3a77420eba&Language=E&Section=ALL
Profession
journalist, public servant

Parliamentary Career

October 14, 1935 - January 25, 1940
LIB
  Dorchester (Quebec)
March 26, 1940 - April 16, 1945
LIB
  Dorchester (Quebec)
June 11, 1945 - April 30, 1949
LIB
  Dorchester (Quebec)
June 27, 1949 - June 13, 1953
LIB
  Dorchester (Quebec)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 68 of 69)


May 3, 1938

Mr. TREMBLAY (Translation):

Mr.Chairman, may I offer a few observations on the question which the house has had under consideration for the past few days. Honourable members have voiced criticisms and protests against the manner in which the moneys voted by this house have been expended in the various provinces. I may be permitted to take a few minutes to state what is being done in this regard in the province to which I have the honour to belong.

The Minister of Labour (Mr. Rogers) stated from his place in this chamber that he would not allow the money voted by the House of Commons to his department for unemployment relief to be used for political purposes. I shall quote to the minister and to the house, without adding any comments of my own, cases where, in the province of Quebec, sums voted for unemployment relief have clearly been used for purely political purposes.

Last summer, I took the trouble to visit several parishes in my constituency, in order to ascertain whether the amounts granted to Quebec province were really being used for the purposes for which they had been voted. I should like to draw the attention of the house and particularly of the Minister of Labour to the manner in which the money voted by parliament was used in the parish of St. Benjamin. This parish received relief grants to which the dominion government contributed and I investigated among others, the case of a recipient of relief who had a wife and six children, several of which were old enough to help their father. One of the sons was 25 years of age; another, 23; another, 21 and another 17, all employed in lumber camps and earning wages sufficient to enable them to support themselves and to help their father. They were all living with their father in the same house. I could give the name of this man whose three eldest sons earned $780 during six months and who received at the same time unemployment relief during six months, from November to April. This man was the sole owner of his farm which, was clear of debt and equipped with rolling stock fully paid for. He had a horse, nine cows and other farm animals. His crop had consisted of 300 bushels of oats, 3,000 bales of hay, 100 bushels of potatoes and 400 pounds of maple sugar. He was therefore able to maintain his

IMr. Rogers.]

family. Moreover, he had three sons living with him who turned over to him the wages they earned in the lumber camps. In spite of that, he received unemployment relief. And I take upon myself the responsibility of stating that he received this relief solely because he was regarded by the inspector appointed by the government of the province of Quebec to supervise the distribution of unemployment relief in the parish in question as a friend of the party which is at present administering the affairs of Quebec province.

Here is a well-to-do farmer with an income sufficient to maintain his family, with three sons helping him and bringing him their wages, who receives relief allowances during six months, while another man, living in distressful circumstances, cannot obtain any relief. In the same parish, Mr. Chairman, a man with a wife and nine children, the eldest of whom is 16, has been refused relief. The provincial government inspector reported to the authorities charged with the administration of the funds voted by this parliament to Quebec province for the care of the indigent that this man has no need of unemployment relief. But see the difference! This man has only six cows-I am giving you the result of an investigation I made myself, I therefore know whereof I speak-he had harvested only 90 bushels of oats-you will recall that the other man had had a few hundred bushels-2,000 bales of hay and 50 bushels of potatoes, and he was living in a hut measuring 16 feet by 17. This family was undoubtedly in dire need. The local inspector saw all these things with his own eyes. He told me personally that he was acquainted with the situation of this farmer.

He even admitted, Mr. Chairman, that the man had a right to relief, and, after having denied him relief allowances during two months, he gave him a recommendation to that effect. However, when I went there in May, he had received nothing yet. He had a larger number of dependents than the other man, and he was destitute; and, yet, relief was denied him. Useless to say that he was not known as a supporter of the present government of the province. And that is the only reason,-no other can be seen,-why he was denied relief allowances, while such allowances were given during six months to the man who had no need of them.

I do not want to trespass on the time of the committee, but, as the minister has been good enough yesterday to ask all members to bring to his attention instances of political favouritism I was anxious to mention those few cases,

Relief and Agricultural Distress

but I may add others at a later time. I will acquaint him with what I have noticed myself in my constituency.

Mr. Chairman, as I was saying a moment ago, we hear complaints from other provinces. It would appear that in those provinces, provincial governments insist that their friends be put in charge of the administration of moneys and favours provided for the relief of the unemployed. As far as Quebec is concerned, I think no representative from that province in this chamber would contradict the following facts: For instance, the federal government contributes substantial amounts for the Trans-Canada highway project and for the construction of the Berthier-Trois Rivieres highway. I do not want to shock those on your left, Mr. Chairman, who have been objecting to political patronage in other provinces, but I want to acquaint them with the fact that for the reconstruction of that part of the Trans-Canada highway no tenders were invited. Instead, the provincial government just asked four of his staunch friends to quote prices and one of them got the contract.

It is a matter of common knowledge that a friend of the provincial government-I might ask the hon. member for Lotbiniere (Mr. Francceur) to confirm this, for the gentleman to whom I refer used to live in his constituency, and is now employed by the provincial government-has been entrusted with a. contract on a cost plus basis, the cost of which is partly borne by the federal government. In Carlesbourg and Beauport was not Mr. Frangois Nolin given work to do without tenders being called for, and at cost plus 10 per cent? The contractor stood no risk of losing anything.

Construction work on the Maniwaki-Senne-terre highway has been allotted to Mr. Hector Moore, without tenders being called for. Again, it is a matter of common knowledge that Mr. Moore lives in Maniwaki and that he is the brother-in-law of Mr. Auger, the member for the constituency of Gatineau in the Quebec legislative assembly. Patronage has been their sole concern. I am sorry to note that they would like to continue this same system, and I object to the further payment of moneys which, undoubtedly, are being used merely for political and patronage purposes

I could mention other instances. I need not refer to Mr. Hermann Barrette's gravel pit, for that is known all over the province of Quebec. Here we see one of Mr. Barrette's organizers buying for $400 something which is afterwards sold for $4,000 to the government, for use in connection with work

upon public roads to the building or repairing of which the federal government contributes an important share.

If I may be permitted, I also wish to bring to the attention of the minister, the persecution suffered by needy unemployed; a few instances of which I mentioned a moment ago, a persecution arising solely from political partisanry, and, as I say, no honourable member of this house will deny it, whatever party he may support. Things have come to such a pass that one is wondering whether he should continue to give his approval to the estimates whereby the minister wants us to put money at the disposal of the Quebec provincial government for so-called relief work. The minister has generously given his adhesion to the scheme of the Committee on the employment of Youth in the Province of Quebec. Again, I wish to bring to his attention this well established fact, that in all constituencies of the province of Quebec, not a single one, I think, of those who have been recommended by government supporters in this house to the provincial employment commission which was supposed to help these young people, has received the consideration he deserved, and it is also well known that in all constituencies those who were favoured had been recommended by local organizers or by candidates who were defeated at the last provincial election, or else by members who are on friendly terms with the Quebec provincial government. If any hon. member of this house can show me a single case where a young man he recommended was favoured by the provincial authorities, I will gladly admit that there is no political partisanship in the administration of the funds voted by the house for the youth of our province.

It was my privilege to take part in several by-elections since the present government came into power; in Bonaventure-the hon. member for Bellechasse (Mr. Boulanger) as well as several other hon. members who were there, could also tell you that voters in these various counties -were told in plain terms that if they voted for the candidate of the Ottawa government their names would be struck ofi the relief lists. I will point out to the minister specific cases that will prove definitely to him that such things happened in Bonaventure and Lotbiniere as well as in other counties.

Mr. Chairman, I do not intend to keep the house any longer on those questions, but I wish to point out that without a closer supervision of the funds voted by this house for

Relief and Agricultural Distress

relief in Quebec, the present government of that province will be left free to employ systematic persecution against certain groups of people on relief who are not sympathetic to that government.

Mr. Chairman, since we claim to have responsible government, since we from the province of Quebec are proud to think that our forefathers fought for responsible government, I ask the minister who is presently responsible for the administration of public funds if we can retain any longer the present system and) still claim to have responsible government.

Topic:   UNEMPLOYMENT RELIEF
Subtopic:   MEASURE FOR ALLEVIATION OF UNEMPLOYMENT AND AGRICULTURAL DISTRESS
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March 24, 1938

Mr. L. D. TREMBLAY (Dorchester) (Translation):

Mr. Chairman, before I submit the few remarks which I feel compelled to make to the house, may I be allowed to extend my sincere congratulations to the hon. Minister of National Defence (Mr. Mackenzie)? I have listened very carefully to his splendid speech this afternoon,-as I always like to hear all his speeches in this house-and I was glad to hear the minister on the question of defence for Canada.

Last year, we took in the house the very position which the minister himself stated this afternoon. We were willing to vote for the estimates of the department of National Defence, but we also stated definitely our position which I would summarize in these few words taken from my own speech of February 18th of last year:

It is true that I am not an imperialist or a jingo, and I will say bluntly that I am entirely opposed to Canada's participation in extra-territorial wars. But I want my country to be protected from any invasion, no matter where it comes from-

And I voted against the motion then before the house. This afternoon, I was glad to hear the very interesting speech of my hon. friend from Beauharnois-Laprairie (Mr. Raymond), and I congratulate him. Everyone admits that the hon. member is serious-minded. everyone knows that he is anxious to vote not only according to his conscience, but also wisely, and since I am in this house I have always seen him live up to this. Events of the year show that the position we took last year was sound, and this year the hon. member endorses the policy of the present government. As we were not experts in matters of war or national defence, we had to rely on those who deserve our confidence, and personally, I deemed it was my duty to do so. Events of the past year show that we were justified in approving the government and that we had correctly interpreted the intentions of the present government. The hon. member for Beauharnois-Laprairie said this afternoon that several statements were made since last year by members of the government. May I be allowed to quote one made by the right hon. Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe), in Lotbiniere, as published in a Moncton paper? This is what the minister said:

Recent events in the Sino-Japanese war, such as the bombing and sinking of the United States gunboat Panay, bring home to us the daily danger of an international conflict and emphasize the necessity of adequate protection for our shores.

With the present development of aerial combat, the Pacific and Atlantic coasts of Canada are in danger of attack in the event of either

England or the United States becoming involved in war. It is all very well to say that England and the United States will protect us. but we must have something with which to protect ourselves until they arrive.

The article is entitled " Lapointe's sane words."

For the sake of comparison, the Minister of Justice also took the city of Westmount, which, although it has a fire brigade of its own, nevertheless relies upon the whole Montreal fire brigade in the event of a conflagration. The hon. Minister of Public Works (Mr. Cardin), and other hon. ministers during by-elections, have had occasion to set forth quite clearly the present government's position as regards rearmament. Personally, only a few weeks after the estimates of National Defence were passed last year, I took part in the Bonaventure by-election. Later, for three weeks, it was my good fortune to join in the campaign carried on by the present member for Lotbiniere (Mr. Francceur), then government candidate in that constituency. Irrespective of any statements made in this regard, the question of national defence and armaments was discussed in Lotbiniere and in Bonaventure counties, as well as in the other counties-the question of armaments was for ever dinned into our ears wherever by-elections were held. During those campaigns, an attempt was made to have the electors of the province of Quebec believe that the government was prepared to enlist citizens of Canada to carry on hazardous enterprises abroad, which is positively untrue.

The people of Quebec province, especially those who urged us last year by their representations to oppose armaments, gave the reasons which, in their estimation, should justify us in voting against them. The main reason offered was this: Canada's participation in another war would increase the burden of taxation, overwhelming as it is already, and would lead the country into financial disaster, if not into absolute bankruptcy.

Another resolution was practically to the same effect. All of these representations did not so much oppose any increase of particular estimates as the possibility of the government joining perhaps in a race for armaments in preparation for a war outside of our territory.

We have heard these objections voiced by some of our friends here this afternoon, much to my regret. As far I am concerned, I stated last year that I felt the government could be trusted and I say it again. People outside politics, without any party affiliation, particularly with the Liberal party-and I will quote testimony to substantiate this-state in this

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connection that the government is perfectly justified in asking for increased estimates for national defence.

With your kind permission, I will quote from an article in L'Action Catholique, by Mr. Eugene L'Heureux, which appeared in February, 1937, and which reads as follows:

For Canada Only

Actual conditions, however, must be taken into account.

Our lack of knowledge in matters of national defence organization deters us from passing judgment on the amount of the appropriations sought by the government for the organization of the country's defence. We think it possible to place confidence in the government on that score, all the more so as the Prime Minister has emphasized the purely Canadian destination of this military expenditure.

These people, who are in no way bound to the Liberal party, find it possible to place confidence in the government on that score and add:

The Prime Minister has himself emphasized the purely Canadian destination of this military expenditure.

This afternoon the hon. member for Beau-harnois-Laprairie (Mr. Raymond) mentioned on several occasions the circumstances in which the right hon. the Prime Minister had publicly testified to his Canadianism for the greatest happiness of the country.

When people like that, in whom we have confidence and whose whole past is a guarantee that they will always place our country's interests before anything else, tell us that we should organize Canada's defence and that they have no other end in view, we should have confidence in them and support them as they were supported at the by-elections which have clearly expressed approval of the policy of the government on national defence.

Not being a great strategist and not wishing to give myself out as one before the house, I cannot say whether our defence, will cost 20, 40 or 50 million dollars. Neither am I ready to state, with all the equanimity shown by some of our friends, that Canada is in no danger of invasion and does not need to be protected. I am not disposed to take this attitude and, this year again, I intend to support the government and the ministers who have repeated, one after the other, that the appropriation asked for is solely for the protection of our homes against all possible danger from outside the country or against internal trouble.

Last year there was some discussion of dangers from inside the country. On March 30. 1937, speaking on the question of industrial disputes, repressive laws and communism, the right hon. the Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe) said:

This session we have taken means to increase another force we have available to maintain internal order in case of emergency, as well as to defend our coasts. I do not know whether it will astonish the house and the hon. member who has just spoken if I tell them that these increases in the estimates have been bitterly criticized by communists and those associated with communism in this country. I hold in my hand a circular which has been sent throughout Canada. One side is in English, the other side in French. It is the work of the association controlled by the communist party in Toronto, and is directed against those estimates.

It is strangesaid the minister of justice:

-that these people should be so strongly opposed to the provision I have mentioned.

Is it not your opinion? Here is an organization which is considered as extremely dangerous and undesirable, especially in the province of Quebec, an organization which we have the duty to fight and to annihilate in our country. When the government expresses the desire to provide the means of maintaining order in Canada, those who are opposed to communism are in league with the communists, unknowingly of course. But they cannot prevent a situation where the communists are associated with them when fighting against the organization for national defence and the maintenance of order in our country, a fact of great significance.

I will leave it at that. I just wanted to tell the government that, for my part, I am convinced that, in the circumstances, it is the duty of the government of the day to maintain in Canada, not a disproportionate army, but an adequate army for our needs. Such is the sentiment in my constituency and, I believe, in the province of Quebec.

I would have liked to quote the figures communicated to me last year by the deputy Minister of National Defence concerning our permanent force, but I do not have them here. However, it is a fact that the Canadian army, and more particularly the permanent force, is in need of reorganization and modernization. The government does not ask for anything beyond that. We have the assurance that the government of the day is not in favour of our participation in foreign wars. It is our duty to support them, to assure them that we appreciate their policy, and to tell them that, while voting increased appropriations for national defence we are irrevocably opposed to Canadian participation in any foreign conflict.

Mr. ARTHUR G. SLAGHT (Parry Sound): Mr. Chairman, in addressing the committee on this important subject I desire first to ally myself with the observations of the hon. member for Broadview (Mr. Church) in the

Supply-National Defence

tribute that he paid to our Minister of National Defence (Mr. Mackenzie). Whether or not hon. members agree with the precise estimates which have been brought down, I think there can be but one opinion as to the fact that we in Canada to-day are singularly fortunate in having as our Minister of National Defence a man of the calibre of the gentleman who at present holds that important portfolio. He came to us from a race outstanding in British history, outstanding in the sacrifices that Scotland has made on the battlefields of the world; and those who believe in strict economy in measures of defence will have the added satisfaction that Scotchmen as a rule are not profligate with their dollars or the dollars entrusted to them to expend. So from the standpoint of the record of a race noted for its courage and its loyalty to the empire, and noted also for its economy where economy is desirable, we are indeed fortunate at this time in our nation's history in having at the helm of the national defence department the gentleman who occupies that position.

I support fully the estimates which he has submitted, and I propose to go a little farther than any hon. members who have so far addressed the committee, by making this rather humble suggestion that, in supplementary estimates perhaps, or in some other appropriate form, if not at this session then certainly at the next, a much more liberal expenditure be made by Canada in one of the branches of our defence services, namely in the service that comes under the heading of air force. Last year we expended some

$10,000,000, and this year the estimates contemplate an expenditure of some $11,000,000 on this service. We have been given the details of the machines, the man power and the equipment of our present air service in Canada.

I was greatly impressed by some of the sentiments expressed by the hon. member for Grey-Bruce (Miss Macphail) in the thoughtful contribution she made to this debate; they were sentiments which, in the main, inspire practically every hon. member. But may I suggest that, exercising the privilege which her sex have enjoyed for the last hundred years, she has changed her mind, in one respect; may I also suggest that, noble as those sentiments are, they failed to touch the exact point which is involved in the discussion of these estimates, and this I say with the greatest respect.

I desire to remind the committee, by citing a few figures, of what is the present armed state of the world. I believe that these figures are authentic, so far as it is possible to be accurate in matters of this kind; they

include not only standing armies ready for battle but reserves in the various countries referred to. Russia, with an enormous population, has an army of the type I have indicated of 15,000,000 men; France, an army of 6,000,000 men; Germany, with a population of 74,000,00, 2,900,000 men; Italy, with a population of 42,000,000, 2,450,000; Czechoslovakia, of which we have heard so much in recent days, approximately 1,250,000 men; Great Britain, 450,000 men. If I am correct, as I believe I am, our force in Canada consists of a permanent force of 4,000 men, and a paper force-and when I say that I shall be understood as meaning battalions which go to camp for perhaps two weeks in the year-

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF NATIONAL DEFENCE
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February 23, 1937

Mr. TREMBLAY:

What is the increase in the tonnage?

Topic:   DEPARTMENT OF NATIONAL DEFENCE
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February 18, 1937

Mr. L. D. TREMBLAY (Dorchester):

Mr. Speaker, in rising this evening to oppose the amendment now before the house, I am conscious of fulfilling a serious and imperative duty. Since the beginning of this debate I have listened to the views which have been expressed. I have given much attention to this question of armaments. The amendment reads:

This house views with grave concern the startling increases of expenditure proposed by the government for purpose of national armament-

I ask the mover of this amendment (Mr. MacNeil) if the house should not also view with concern the conditions facing the whole world at the present time. Every nation is increasing its armaments at a terrific pace. Against whom are they arming? Is my hon. friend in a position to tell me? Does he think what is going on now in Europe is encouraging? Does he view conditions in Spain as a proof of peace? Let us not be satisfied with words. In June, 1914, who ever thought that a European war was impending? The hon. member is a fellow war veteran and I want to assure him that I am not discussing such a momentous problem from a partisan point of view. Will my hon. friend state that in the spring of 1914 there were even a dozen men in Canada who foresaw the war that came in that year? I hate war just as much as do he and my other war comrades. Like all hon. members of this house I do not want my children-I am proud to say that I have eleven-to have to go to war, and I shall not betray them and my fellow citizens and force them to undergo the terrible experiences which the men of my generation had to go through.

Surely the mover of this amendment realizes that the world hardly perceives where it is going and does not realize what may be in store for it. I am astounded at some of the statements made by hon. members. They say that Canada either will be threatened with war, or will not. If she is threatened with war, some hon. members say that either England or the United States will defend us and we need not worry. If she is not threatened with war, some hon. members say, "Why should we arm?" I wish to take up the first alternative, namely, that in case of war England or the United States would defend us. May I be permitted to quote a

National Defence-Mr. Tremblay

paragraph, from an article written by Doctor Jules Dorion, editor of L'Action Catholique, on January 14 .last. This is what he said:

Of course some people are of the opinion that as we can do but so little it would be unwise to spend money in armament and we should be satisfied with leaning on others. Well let us not forget the proverb that says: Help yourself and God will help you. The weakest among men is in duty bound to do his share before relying on his neighbours, and the same thing may be said, of states. Their limited area and their small population do not prevent Belgium, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Denmark and other Scandinavian states from having their own army, kept on the best possible footing, and their own navy, when necessary. Belgium has just reorganized her army and made it more efficient, although that country is well aware of the fact that France and England are greatly interested in having her territorial integrity duly respected. Belgium is a living example of a small country being ransacked, notwithstanding the sanctity of treaties and the sympathetic concern of powerful neighbours.

On the other side, accepting protection from one who is not bound to afford it cannot go on very long without servitude. We do not feel inclined to barter our provincial status in almost a sovereign dominion for that of an ordinary state in the neighbouring country.

Not only do I make those words my own, but I think I am sufficiently acquainted with the population of the constituency of Dorchester, which it is my privilege to represent, to say that the people of Dorchester, whether of French, English, Irish or Scotch origin, do not feel inclined1 to barter their provincial status in an almost sovereign dominion for that of an ordinary state in a neighbouring country. I wish I could say with the same righteous candour which other hon. members have shown, that we need only fold our arms, urge peace and do nothing to provoke another country, in order to ensure the perpetuity of peace in Canada. Let me ask these pacifists if little Belgium provoked anybody in 1914. Did she do anything to justify invasion of her territory? Certainly not. History will show future generations, just as the actual facts have proved to us, that a country can be not only invaded but ransacked in spite of its peaceful feelings and strict neutrality. Against whom do we arm? This is what the hon. member for Bellechasse (Mr. Boulanger) said last Tuesday evening:

We are arming not against somebody in particular, but rather against anybody. It is impossible to foresee what we shall do with this army that we wish to make more efficient and more mobile. What we can say to our fellow-citizens is that we want an army which is really useful and which we can use in case of emergency. Against whom do we arm? Many of us have an accident insurance policy for which we have been paying premiums since 15, 20, 25 or 30 years. We have not yet been hit by a motor car, and still we keep on paying

the premiums. It is impossible to say on which date, at which time and by which car we may be hit some day.

Sir, we are not arming against anybody, but we want everybody to know that we are ready to defend our own country. With regard to danger from the outside, nobody in this house can give us the assurance that we are immune.

Again, the pacifists say that everything is fine within our borders and that we do not need any protection on that account. But is that statement in conformity with the facts? The hon. member for Beauharnois-Laprairie (Mr. Raymond), who spoke with such common sense and judgment last Monday evening, provided us with ample material for reflection on the menace from within. He said:

Quite recently, speaking about the strike in the General Motors plants, Father Coughlin pointed out the influence of communism in that strike, and he brought to the attention of the authorities, before it might be too late, the threat of a revolution. During that strike the civil and judicial authorities were flouted.

He also pointed out the fact that Canadians have left their country to enlist in the Spanish army. Is it not true, Mr. Speaker, that the press daily brings to light the fact that we are living in disquieting times? Do the events in Spain not cause grave concern to the hon. member for Vancouver North? Does he consider as a purely local incident the shocking trials which her people are going through? Like myself, I am sure he reads the Canadian Veteran, and has he not read in its January issue the following editorial?

With German and Italian "volunteers" forming the major strength of the forces under command of rebel General Franco, plus the prospective addition of several thousand Japanese, on one side; and a large so-called international force aiding the Spanish government on the other side, the war in Spain long since has lost its purely domestic significance. If there had been no outside interference prior to and at the outset, the uprising would have found its own solution in short order for neither faction had the materials with which to wage war for long. But II Duce saw in Franco's bid for dictatorship an opportunity of making the Mediterranean a truly Italian sea; the Fuehrer envisioned a cordon of nations hemming in France, plus an opportunity of regaining a foothold in Africa. Stalin was aroused by the dual threat to this first real prospect of extending the World International movement beyond Russia..

So Spain has become the cockpit of a little "Great War," her towns and cities ravaged, her people starved and murdered, her treasures destroyed, her social and economic life wholly disrupted. Whatever eventuates, Spain can only be a pliant tool in the hands of foreign schemers for years to come, an unwilling threat to the peace of the world.

1018 COMMONS

National Defence-Mr. Tremblay

Right here in Canada, Mr. Speaker, we find disciples of these two political schools who at present have Spain as their battleground, but whose object it is to have the whole world as their sphere of action.

I shall not pass judgment on the systems of government which other nations have thought fit to adopt, but I am emphatically opposed to these nations taking it upon themselves to make us benefit by their experiments. I submit that the forms of government which may have brought order out of chaos in Russia, in Italy or in Germany will never be accepted by the free people of my country, and the propagandists who are paid by the expounders of these doctrines must know that the government of Canada is ready to thwart them by force, should the occasion arise.

Now what about communism? Canada is not exempt in this regard. Only a short time ago I was reading a pamphlet published recently by Les Editions de l'Universite 1'Ottawa, in which Father Sauve, O.M.I., said: Communism, in Canada, possesses now an organization whose ramifications extend to all sections of the dominion. Every year, the communists hold anti-capitalistic meetings in several places: at Montreal, in Toronto, in Winnipeg, in Vancouver. . . .

Lenin's revolutionary tree has rooted in Russia, but its branches are already extending to all parts of the world. . . .

Soon, if we do not take care, they will bring about a furious storm. Indeed the hour is momentous and this problem must be faced from its real aspect. . . .

Is it not His Eminence Cardinal Villeneuve who said: "Communism in Canada is not merely hypothetical, it has become a reality. It is ablaze in our midst. To encompass it is a matter of urgency."

In his recent pamphlet Mr. Rene Bergeron, of Montreal, also tells us that "communism is a force and that this force is a menace to Canada."

With such unequivocal opinions before us, I cannot act like the ostrich, and I shall certainly not deal in any haphazard way with so vital a question as that of national defence. It is true that I am not an imperialist or a jingo, and I will say bluntly that I am entirely and emphatically opposed to Canada's participation in extra-territorial wars. But I want my country to be protected from any invasion, no matter where it comes from, and I shall vote against the motion now before the house. I believe, in so declaring,

I am perfectly in accord with my leaders.

Like the hon. member for Bellechasse, whom I like very much, I am only a countryman, and if I reflect the opinion of the "habitant" from down home, I want to impress upon the house that I have no

apology to make. On the contrary I am proud to speak for the "habitant." On such important matters as those which are now being considered by this house, I do not claim to be an expert, but I believe in my leaders, and I am happy to tell them that I accepted the invitation to be the candidate of the right hon. gentleman (Mr. Mackenzie King) who is now at the head of the government because I placed all my confidence in him and because I admired above all his true Canadian spirit. During the election campaign, on every platform in my constituency and elsewhere I delivered addresses I expressed approval of the policy that he was expounding, and my fellow-citizens elected me to this house. I wish to state here that I believe in my leaders and that I am satisfied with the statements of policy which have been made in the house.

My province, Mr. Speaker, stands second to none in the matter of patriotism. History is there to prove this. We are essentially Canadians and it is our desire to remain such. We do not want Canada to embark upon costly overseas ventures, but, following the example of our forefathers, we are ready to defend our land. The Prime Minister, the Minister of Justice (Mr. Lapointe), whom we respect in Quebec because, sir, he does credit to our people in the government of our country and because he represents the best of our race, and the Minister of National Defence (Mr. Mackenzie)-all have declared what I could sum up by quoting what the Minister of National Defence said on Monday evening in this house:

There is no idea whatever of sending a single Canadian soldier overseas in any expeditionary force, and there is not a single cent providing for that in the estimates this house will be asked to vote.

Such emphatic statements, made by men whom we trust, give us much satisfaction.

In conclusion, may I say that Canada, in the critical hours through which we are passing, should be proud to have at the head of her government our present Prime Minister. An imperial conference will be held in London in a few weeks. Those who will represent the government of their country at the conference will bear a heavy responsibility. It is obvious that the defence issue will constitute one of the gravest problems the conference will have to deal with, and our delegates will have 'the strict duty of representing Canadian sentiment. I firmly believe they will do so.

May I be permitted to read what the Evening Citizen of February 15 had to say with regard to our principal delegates to the next conference:

National Defence-Mr. Jaques

Canada could be represented by no abler minister at the conference table than Premier Mackenzie King. With a lifetime of experience in round table conferences, affecting industrial and social conditions, as well as in the international field of politics, he is a natural leader along paths of conciliation. The spirit of Canada, the spirit of friendly cooperation, readiness to meet the other man half-way as the most hopeful way to make an enduring agreement, is reflected in every substantial achievement of the prime minister's long political career. . . .

It should be helpful also to bear in mind that there is little danger of this government being led away along any path of imperial adventure. With Messrs. Mackenzie King and Ernest Lapointe sitting together, as they doubtless will, at the imperial conference, no zealous nationalist need have any fear about the safeguarding of the national interest of Canada. . . .

I am fully in accord with the sentiments expressed in this editorial.

Mr. Speaker, I shall vote against the amendment.

((Translation): I would not like to resume

my seat without saying a few words, not in my maternal tongue, because my mother was English, but in my father's language, which is also that of the majority of my constituents. I have followed very attentively the debate on the amendment, which I consider as most important and I wanted to express, in the language of the majority of the members of this house, the attitude I intended taking.

Mr. Speaker, it is certainly not without due consideration that I have taken the stand I am taking now. I have given this question much thought and study and I have tried to understand this matter of increase in the armaments estimates.

I think that I am absolutely justified, so far as I can judge personally, to rely on the leaders of my party. But a few months ago, I was the candidate of the party which, today, is responsible for the administration of the country. I then had faith in them and I was sincere, and now that I have to face a problem the details of which I cannot understand-I admit it very candidly and very honestly-it seems to me that, in conscience, I have but just one thing to do: to leave the matter to those in whom I have put my trust.

Since I have been elected, from the day I have had the honour of representing in this house 27,000 constituents of the county of Dorchester, I have found no reason to withdraw the trust which I placed in my leaders in October, 1935.

Mr. Speaker, is there in the Canadian confederation any province that should trust more the Liberal party's leader than the province of Quebec?

We have experienced some sad days through Canada's political history, and I believe that we should not forget them.

We have been attacked, but I well remember that it is the leader of our party who defended us, and fought against those who were attacking us. It was he who stood up in our defence at the very door of Toronto. And we would lose faith in our government? Personally, I think that we would be wrong, and we will surely not do it.

The province of Quebec expects its representatives to declare in this house that we, from Quebec, refuse to participate in military operations outside our own territory. Nobody has said otherwise since the beginning of this debate, and never, I believe, through all the Canadian history, have we seen ministers sitting on your right, Mr. Speaker, and speaking as members of the government, being as positive and as sincere as the members of the present government.

Mr. Speaker, I certainly will continue- and I am sure that the province of Quebec will be satisfied, a least I know that the constituents of the county of Dorchester will be- to vote confidence in the King government. I am sure that the province of Quebec as well as its members in this house, realize that nowadays we are happy-and we should thank Providence for it-to have such an eminent man at the head of the government of this country.

Topic:   SUPPLY-NATIONAL DEFENCE CONTINUATION OF DEBATE ON AMENDMENT TO MOTION OF MINISTER OF FINANCE
Subtopic:   Hull, P.Q.
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January 28, 1937

Mr. L. D. TREMBLAY (Dorchester) (Translation):

Mr. Speaker, I have a few observations to offer with regard to the resolution moved by the hon. member for Champlain (Mr. Brunelle). First, I wish to join with the previous speaker in congratulating the hon. member for his motion. While listening, a moment ago, to the hon. member for Davenport (Mr. MacNicol), I realized that the hon. member for Champlain was perfectly right in raising this question. The resolution asks for the appointment of a com-

Redistribution-Mr. Tremblay

mittee for the single purpose of giving justice to the people of Canada. In support of that statement, I can but quote his motion which is as follows:

That, in the opinion of this house, it is expedient that the Representation Act, 1933, should be amended in such manner as to bring about a more equitable readjustment of the representation in the House of Commons and to effect thereby a more just redistribution of Canada's electoral districts, and that a special committee be appointed to study this matter.

Mr. Speaker, my colleague, the hon. member for Champlain thought fit, a few days ago, to point out as a crying injustice the distorted outline of the county I have the honour to represent in this house. He was perfectly right. The redistribution which must take place after each decennial census was so ordered with a view to balancing the population in the various constituencies and to enable communities about equal as to number to be represented in the house, in so far as possible. When the hon. member showed you the map of the electoral district, he did not mention the size of its population, which I know, of course, better than he does; but if you consult the report of the chief electoral officer for 1930, you will see that instead of balancing the population as between Dorchester and the adjoining counties of Belle-chasse and Beauce,-liberal counties, and known as such-they accentuated the difference in number. Kindly permit me, Mr. Speaker, to quote a few figures. For instance, before the last census, the population of the electoral district of Dorchester was 29,503. The adjoining riding of Beauce had a population of 52,700. My predecessor, who evidently cared no more about the balance which he was to try to reestablish, gave the county of Beauce four parishes that belonged to the county of Dorchester, when the county of Beauce had already twice as big a population as the other one.

Well, you may say that there was perhaps some geographical reason to justify the attitude taken by the former member for Dorchester. In my opinion, there might have been three reasons: the geographical conditions, the psychological causes, and, last but not least, the political motive. As to the geographical conditions, if you will kindly look over this map of the constituency of Dorchester which I am now showing to the house, you will easily recognize a likeness to the sphinx. Look at the features, it is the sphinx. Look at the nose, the chin, everything is perfect. Facing that, there are two other parishes, St. Zacharie and St. Aurelie, which, being a part of Dorchester county for federal purposes since many years, had asked,

only a few years before the general election of 1935, to be reincorporated in the county of Dorchester for provincial purposes. The municipal council, the mayor and the authorities of the parish had asked that these parishes be made a part of the county of Dorchester for both provincial and federal purposes. They readily admitted within the boundaries of Dorchester the good people of St. Aurelie and St. Zacharie, and everybody was happy. Once elected, my predecessor said: No longer will you belong to Dorchester; from now on you will be included in the constituency of Beauce for federal purposes, in spite of the fact that you have just secured, for provincial purposes, the right of being included in Dorchester. Perhaps my predecessor is an archeologist; possibly he is. This morning, as I looked over this map of the county of Dorchester, which I am now showing you,

I felt that he may have been gifted with such a talent. If my predecessor had not taken off the whole area shown here, which, naturally and geographically, belonged to Dorchester, he would not have had this picture of a sphinx. There was just one reason for taking away those parishes; it was neither a geographical nor a psychological reason, because in the county council the authorities of those parishes had requested to be included in the county of Dorchester, which I have the honour of representing here, but there was Mr. Gagnon who thought they were cumbersome, not, as I say, from a geographical or psychological but, to be sure, from a political standpoint, for at the election of 1930, these parishes gave, respectively: St. Aurelie, a Liberal majority of 76, and St. Zacharie, a majority of 173, also Liberal. As a result, Mr. Gagnon requested that these parishes be included in the constituency of Beauce.

From an archaeological standpoint, the sphinx would not have been complete had not something been taken off here in order that its head might be properly delineated. There was a small parish in this first corner, the parish of Saint-Luc. It naturally belonged to the county of Dorchester, that is, to the townships of Ware and Standon; the name of the latter had to be cut in half, because one-half of the township had been included in Bellechasse. Well, my predecessor -I do not wish to insinuate that he had political or electoral motives-cut a hole here in the county, so that the head of the sphinx might be perfect. He made the drawing, he removed the small parish of Saint-Luc and had it included in the county of Bellechasse solely for his own protection. But, some might say, the people of Saint-Luc may pos-

Redistribution-Mr. Tremblay

sibly, from a psychological standpoint, have preferred to be included in Bellechasse. I say no and my colleague from Bellechasse would tell you, if he were here. I like very much the people of Saint-Luc, but the surroundings are somewhat unfamiliar to them in Bellechasse, where they have been transplanted only through the wishes of the former member for Dorchester in this house. That is easily understood; those who, to-day, are citizens of Saint-Luc, formerly belonged to Standon and Sainte-Germaine, which are within the townships of Ware and Standon. Mr. Speaker, these people attended the meeting which my opponent and I jointly held in Standon, and they were there, not as Dorchester citizens or electors-they belonged to Bellechasse at the last election-but they could not understand why, for instance, they, who were legitimate children of the county of Dorchester should have been transplanted into Bellechasse solely through the will of my omnipotent predecessor. Well, Mr. Speaker, f am giving you an explanation for this first hole that was cut into the county of Dorchester. You may say that there was perhaps another reason than the geographical conditions. But I am showing you that it is absolutely unreasonable from a psychological angle, and I have also shown that it was wholly unreasonable from the geographical standpoint. However, I agree that there is a political -reason, and it is this: The small parish of St. Luc, which numbers about 150 voters, gave the Liberal party a majority of 125 votes in 1930, and again a majority of 138 votes in 1935. If you will kindly follow my argument you will see that there is another piece of antique art which I again consider as perfect. You have here the lion's tail, that is the sphinx's tail. You know that the sphinx had the head of a man and the body of a lion. They tried to draw something like a lion's tail. That is how they took away a beautiful parish of which the county of Dorchester was so proud, I mean the parish of St. Maxime de Scott. From an artistic point of view I agree that my predecessor was perfectly right; but geographically and psychologically speaking, I repeat that these people rightly belonged to Dorchester. As to voting purposes, the former member had every good reason to send them to Beauce. Again if you will consult the reports of the chief electoral officer for 1930 and 1935, you will notice that St. Maxime gave a majority of 91 to the Liberal party in 1930, and that after it had been transferred to Beauce county, it still gave the Liberal party a majority of 190, as a protest against what had been done. Mr. Speaker, I wanted to submit these facts

to the house, because I feel that the motion of the hon. member for Champlain is fully justified. I admit that sometimes we may, for political reasons, allow a few small trifling injustices to slip in, but it is unworthy of a man who wishes to represent his fellow citizens in a house like this one to say, for instance, to thousands of people: Although you wish to belong to Dorchester, I am going to ship you to other counties and you will be part of them, simply because at the coming elections I want to be elected, and secure a majority for my party.

Mr. Speaker, if you will permit me, I shall say a few words in English, in reply to my hon. friend from Davenport (Mr. MacNicol), although he has left the chamber.

(Text) Mr. Speaker, a short time ago the hon. member for Davenport (Mr. MacNicol) wanted to know if the hon. member for Champlain (Mr. Brunelle) was asking for a committee to redistribute all the counties of Canada. That certainly is not the intention of the hon. member for Champlain. His motion shows that he asks this house to appoint a committee to render justice. The motion reads:

That, in the opinion of this house, it is expedient that the Representation Act, 1933, should he amended in such manner as to bring about a more equitable readjustment-

I cannot see why any hon. member should be afraid of a motion such as this. I do not think anyone would object if the hon. member for Davenport appeared before the committee which the hon. member for Champlain suggests should be appointed, and demonstrated that such readjustment would be unjust. I think the hon. member for Champlain is perfectly right in asking for a committee to study those matters which were neglected in 1933. I ask the hon. member for Davenport to look at Hansard to-morrow morning and read the translation of the remarks I have just made in French and then tell me whether he does not believe a redistribution to be absolutely necessary in my riding in order to give justice to those whom I represent in this house.

I shall conclude by saying that I do not think any hon. member should object to the motion of the hon. member for Champlain. All he asks is that justice be given to the population of Canada. That is all that anyone who realizes his responsibilities could ask for, and I think the house should unanimously support the hon. member for Champlain.

Redistribution-Mr. Bennett

Topic:   REDISTRIBUTION
Subtopic:   MOTION FOR SPECIAL COMMITTEE TO STUDY MORE EQUITABLE READJUSTMENT OF REPRESENTATION
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