George Stanley WHITE

WHITE, The Hon. George Stanley, P.C., Q.C.

Personal Data

Progressive Conservative
Hastings--Frontenac (Ontario)
Birth Date
November 17, 1897
Deceased Date
January 6, 1977
barrister and solicitor, lawyer

Parliamentary Career

March 26, 1940 - April 16, 1945
  Hastings--Peterborough (Ontario)
June 11, 1945 - April 30, 1949
  Hastings--Peterborough (Ontario)
June 27, 1949 - June 13, 1953
  Hastings--Peterborough (Ontario)
August 10, 1953 - April 12, 1957
  Hastings--Frontenac (Ontario)
June 10, 1957 - February 1, 1958
  Hastings--Frontenac (Ontario)
  • Government Whip in the Senate (January 1, 1958 - January 1, 1963)

Most Recent Speeches (Page 1 of 185)

September 7, 1961

Mr. While:

Mr. Chairman, I think the house has listened with a great deal of interest today to the speeches made by various members on external affairs and can be proud of the considered judgment they have displayed in this field. I cannot apply that comment to the last speech to which we have listened. If comfort is going to be taken from that speech it will be in Moscow and not in Ottawa. I would ask the Canadian people to read, mark and learn the aims and ideas of the New party if this is an indication of their left wing thinking. I seriously commend to the Canadian people sober second thought with regard to the speech to which we have just listened.

All history is written for our learning and yet we fail to take a proper interest and learn the lessons from it that we should. How soon we forget the lessons of history and how little we heed them. Today we heard of neutralism and of 25 nations meeting in Belgrade that have not committed themselves either to the west or to the east. It came as a great shock to those 25 nations when the three-year nuclear test ban was broken. They were horrified. How soon we forget Hungary, Tibet and other places in the world. How soon we forget the promises that were made

two or three times in our lifetime only to be broken when the time was propitious. Eventually all nations must choose. There will be no neutralism if a war should come, which God forbid.

Nehru's neutralism received a rude shock when Tibet was attacked, a peace loving neighbour that had never transgressed against any of the other Asian peoples. All they desired to do was to live in peace with their neighbours but that did not prevent them from being overrun. We should not forget that. I was glad, as I am sure were the house and the people of Canada to hear the Secretary of State for External Affairs announce, as we have all known before, that Canada stands for peace, and also his references to the strenuous efforts that have been made by Canada and Canada's representatives to maintain peace in a troubled world.

Events of the past few days have only served to emphasize the conditions that have existed since the end of the war in 1945. An armed and jittery world jumps from one crisis to another. I ask hon. members, has Canada, has the western world created any of these crises? The answer is no. Let hon. members turn their thoughts for a moment to Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Korea, Laos, Malaya and Tibet. Berlin, of course, has always been a source of annoyance since the close of the war.

Let us not forget or fail to understand the march of events. Two world wars indicated that the United States of America tried to evade entanglement in those conflicts up to the eleventh hour. Why? Because they were a peaceful nation. They did not want to be involved in war. That has been their history. I say this because they are a peace loving people. They are our neighbours and we probably know them better than any other nation. The last resort, as far as they are concerned, is war. I hope the whole world will realize this. Consequently they and the western allies are being pushed on all fronts as never before.

Berlin at the moment-and I emphasize those words "at the moment"-is the powder keg. We well remember that the western world has always had its quislings, traitors and collaborators. We still have them with us. Let us not forget those who in the past days would sell their country to an enemy.

Last week there appeared in the London Free Press and I assume in other Canadian newspapers the words of a Canadian who said that Berlin was not worth the life of one Canadian. I say that is not the issue involved. If we were to sacrifice Berlin, would that guarantee peace in the world? I say it would only guarantee another crisis and then another crisis would follow as inevitably

as night follows day. If surrendering West Berlin would solve the world's problems and Russia's demands would cease, possibly we could agree; but surrender does not carry that guaranty.

Earlier today reference was made to the mass migration of people from East Berlin to West Berlin. This is a revelation to the world if it will but heed. It is to be noted that there is no great rush on the part of people from West Berlin in seeking entry into East Berlin. This points out how valuable freedom is in the eyes of many people. They are prepared to leave their homes and sacrifice all they own to seek freedom under a western regime. If the east has so much to offer, why is there no trek from west to east?

Through the inspiring statement made today by the Secretary of State for External Affairs and through the excellent speech made in Winnipeg last week by our Prime Minister Canada's position, its role and the course it should follow have been made abundantly clear. I advise all hon. members to read and re-read that speech in which the Prime Minister outlined the course we should follow. Canada has an important date with destiny if we can interpret to the east and the west the true nature of the problems facing us. Canada can be of tremendous service to the world in its search for peace. We are without territorial ambitions, without prejudices and we understand both our American neighbours and the people of the United Kingdom.

In addition we are a member of that loosely knit community of nations known as the commonwealth. The commonwealth is pledged to aid in every possible way the search for peaceful solutions. Today we hear much loose talk about colonialism, but within the commonwealth more nations have achieved freedom than through any other individual means. I do not refer to an enforced colonialism such as we see in Latvia, in other Baltic states and elsewhere. Having achieved freedom these new nations have decided of their own free will to remain within the commonwealth. I again ask all Canadians: does appeasement pay? We can go back in history and we find that history answers: "No." I again ask: Would surrender in Berlin eliminate world crisis? Again history replies that it would not; in fact, as I mentioned before the changes of increasing the incidence of crises would be greater.

May I remind the committee that all NATO nations are pledged under the United Nations charter to settle international disputes peacefully, with security and justice. NATO is not an offensive organization but is designed purely for defence. Last fall the United Nations was under fire from the Soviet

Supply-External Affairs bloc. It was challenged as it has never been challenged before. I believe this gave to the free world some indication of the ruthlessness of the cold war in which we are engaged.

It is interesting to note that during the founding convention of the New Democratic party held recently a motion was moved that would have had the effect of urging Canada to withdraw from NATO. This motion did not pass, but I point out to the committee that those elements are still within that party and constitute its vociferous, radical, left wing supporters. I ask whose friends they are and who is encouraged when they advocate such a move. Surely not the west.

I wish to deal briefly with NATO and NORAD, one an organization for the defence of Europe and the other for the defence of North America. As I mentioned, the challenge to the leadership of the United Nations was never so evident as it was last fall. Destroy the United Nations and what has the world to depend on for peaceful solutions of world problems? In spite of its obvious value the United Nations has been made a sounding board for political propaganda. The unprecedented attack on the organization last fall is an indication of the desire of the Soviet bloc to destroy the organization.

The Secretary of State for External Affairs has worked unceasingly for disarmament at Geneva, at the United Nations and on every conceivable occasion. How can we continue to negotiate in good faith when solemn agreements are reduced to mere scraps of paper? In spite of this the minister reiterated today Canada's desire to negotiate in a calm, dispassionate spirit with a view to finding constructive solutions to our problems.

In 1945 the United Nations charter was signed by 55 nations. As was mentioned earlier, our Prime Minister was present at that meeting in San Francisco. Today there are 100 members of this organization. If the institution is to survive and serve mankind of necessity changes will have to be made.

NATO was bom as a result of the Czechoslovakian coup of 1948 and arose from the fear that Russia could and would march across Europe. One of the objectives of NATO has not yet been realized, the social, political and economic understanding among NATO nations.

Ever since the portfolio of the Secretary of State for External Affairs has been held by the present minister he has stated and restated Canada's policy that we are against nuclear testing, with no strings attached.

After three years of agreement Russia suddenly commences nuclear tests. Why, I ask. To create an atmosphere of fear. Fear is probably the greatest phychological weapon

Supply-External Affairs in the hands of the Soviets and the timing on their part has been excellent. If we cannot continue to agree on nuclear tests how are we to agree on disarmament? The Prime Minister led the way in suggesting to Canada and to the world to avoid hysteria, to be calm, to endeavour to understand the grave implications, the threats aimed at Berlin and at Germany, to be reasonable but to be firm. Would retreat improve our position? Experience and history answer no. It would only serve to show the world that our pledged word to protect the rights, which the United States, the United Kingdom and the U.S.S.R. gave in 1945 and reiterated after the cessation of the blockade of Berlin in May, 1949, meant nothing; that these guarantees were of no avail and that we were not prepared to back them up. The Canadian people should consider our solemn pledges and the disastrous results of repudiation.

I listened with a great deal of interest to the speech concerning South America. The winds of change are blowing. The world envies the progress of Canada, the Americas and the west. Strangely, however, some governments somehow fail to realize that through freedom of the individual, through democracy, through the ability of the individual to enjoy the fruits of his labour, Canada and the Americas have achieved this high standard of living in fewer than three centuries. I think this is fundamental. The individual should be free and when he is free he has an opportunity to enjoy the fruits of his labour without molestation from governments.

I now wish to say a word or two about foreign aid and some other aspects of external affairs. With respect to external aid, Canadians generally approve our foreign aid policies. However, I am of the opinion that a greater number of Canadians are now questioning the effectiveness of our foreign aid policies. Canadians are generous. They approach external aid as a Christian problem but they are also beginning to ask, what have we to show for our external aid dollar? They do not believe in a Colombo plan that extends into perpetuity, I have believed in and advocated increased aid for education. How can this best be accomplished? I am of the opinion that technical education can best be carried out in the recipient countries, but that the other types of education are probably given to better advantage when the student of the recipient country is brought to Canada. I am being rather general in this, but I am of the opinion that that is the most effective method and I am hopeful that an increase may be possible in student exchange in this field of extending education to foreign lands. To those hon. members who are particularly interested

in this phase of external affairs I would recommend the report of the external affairs committee where this problem was gone into in detail.

How can the rank and file of the citizens of new nations in Africa and elsewhere achieve a higher standard of living? Dams and other tangible things are spectacular but do they reach the needy people of those countries?

As I said earlier, I listened with a great deal of interest to the speech concerning South America. I am a realist and I ask how can 18 million people increase appreciably the living standards of the teeming millions living in abject poverty in other countries of the world? Unless the governments of those particular countries are prepared to co-operate and help-I know our government is-unless they are prepared to make it possible for those people to enjoy the fruits of their labour, then anything we may do may be, I fear, in vain.

Prior to this century slavery guaranteed to a few a high living standard and a subliving standard and hard labour to the others. Democracy is the opposite of this, and freedom is the answer to those problems.

I am going to add a further word about the commonwealth. I view with a certain amount of alarm and misgiving recent developments within the commonwealth. Without condoning the actions of any one country within the commonwealth, may I say the stage is being set for interference in the internal affairs of a sister nation on the part of commonwealth countries. This could wreck the commonwealth. Nothing would please the Soviets better. The commonwealth, as I mentioned earlier, is the greatest single force for peace in the world. Let us endeavour to maintain and strengthen this commonwealth and commonwealth understanding. Let wisdom and understanding prevail. The dilemma or problem of today is freedom on an orderly basis.

I have mentioned just in passing the organization of the American states. I want to compliment the minister who in his wisdom decided to be cautious and to await events. A few short months have shown the wisdom of that policy. Cuba and the Dominican Republic are in turmoil. South America is feeling the winds of change. I was interested in hearing the minister point out the vast untouched resources in South America that are there awaiting capital and labour to work out the salvation of the people. That is all our people had when they came to this country three, four or five generations ago. They had nothing else but hard labour, diligence, saving and perseverance. This is what built up the high standard of living of this country and it can do it for other

countries if the governments of those countries make it possible for the people to do so. However, when the vast majority of those people are not able to enjoy a fair share of those resources through their labour, the stage is set for communism. Governments should be aware of this fact and so arrange their internal affairs that the people of those countries can participate in and enjoy some of the resources that are on their doorsteps.

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February 21, 1961

1. How many non-operating employees were with the Canadian National Railways as of January 1, 1950?

2. Of this number, how many were engaged in a supervisory capacity?

3. How many non-operating employees were with the Canadian National Railways as of January 1, 1960?

4. Of this number, how many were engaged in a supervisory capacity?

Answer by: Hon. Leon Balcer (Minister of


The management of the Canadian National Railways advise as follows:

1. Monthly data for 1950 are incomplete, and for this period annual figures have been substituted. Comparable annual data for I960 will not be available for another month but the average for the first 11 months of 1960 will permit a reasonable comparison to be made. The average number of non-operating employees for the year 1950 and for the first 11 months of 1960 were as follows:

Year 1950, 75,114; average, Jan.-Nov. 1960, 67,671.

2. Since many supervisory personnel have jurisdiction over other employee groups as well as the non-operating group, it is not possible to identify separately those who have supervisory jurisdiction only over non-operating employees. The total number of supervisory personnel (union and non-union) on the payroll was as follows:

Year, 1950, 8,669; average, Jan.-Nov. 1960, 9,839.

These figures do not include those supervisory personnel who are not separately identified as such in the Canadian classification of railway employees in accordance with which personnel statistics are maintained. The numbers involved, however, are relatively small and are omitted in each of the three periods covered, thereby providing some measure of consistency to the data to permit comparability.

3. Answered by No. 1.

4. Answered by No. 2.

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January 25, 1961

Mr. White:

By conservative estimates it is expected that the population of London will be 300,000 in the next 20 years. In other words, the present method of securing water is not satisfactory. In other words, water is being stolen from the surrounding farms and it is just about time that this was discontinued.

In addition to this city of London bill, there are several other provincial bills that have set up the water resources commission and others, but they have not corrected the glaring injustice that has been heaped on the surrounding municipalities. There are untold examples I could quote. However, I am going to use this one of which I know from a personal experience. I refer to a well in which the water 50 years ago was within six feet of the top. Today it is 68 feet to the water level. Yet the public utilities commission would tell us that this procedure is not reducing the water table in western Ontario. I am using this example from the county of Middlesex, but the situation applies to practically all of old Ontario west of Toronto. I am not so well acquainted with the rest of the province.

The Ontario water resources commission admit that surface wells in western Ontario will fail in the not too distant future. They also admit that deep artesian wells now owned by farmers are destined to fail if continued and unrestricted exploitation continues. Therefore I think the time has arrived when some action should be taken on the part of the governments concerned, at all levels. Today more farmers in the area are short of water than ever before. Some are drawing water from ponds and lakes; some are buying water.

In addition to this, London's water supply is known as hard water, and some industries and householders are paying more for water softeners and water softening equipment than they are paying for the water they soften. Yet western Ontario is nearly surrounded by

fresh, soft water. There is fresh water and there is soft water. There is lake Huron on the north, lake St. Clair, the river St. Clair and river Detroit on the west, and lake Erie to the south.

The London public utilities commission is now engaged in drilling for water within approximately 15 miles of lake Erie. In other words, they are pretty near out in the lake drilling for water now, but at the same time they are stealing water from surrounding municipalities. I doubt whether 15 per cent of the farm population in my area have deep wells.

The city of London is saying to these farmers, "If we dry your well, we will supply you with water". But supposing a few years hence the farmer drills a well and the water table has lowered to the point where he does not reach water? Are they going to supply it to him? No, definitely not. And if they do supply it to him, they will only supply it at a price.

We should take a look at the history of other lands once fertile, green and forested, which over the centuries have become denuded of trees, short of water, and semi-arid. They are the bible lands, Babylon, Greece, north Africa and the Mediterranean area. If we take a look to the south, to the United States, we see that there one farmer in every four is co-operating in the nation's conservation plans.

In Canada we have polluted lakes and rivers, and the hon. member for Lambton West has drawn this very graphically to the attention of the authorities from time to time. The royal commission on forestry reported in 1947 that in old Ontario over five million acres of waste land should be returned to forest.

According to Rand McNally's standard world atlas, Canada's land area is shown as being only 3 per cent arable, and then we talk rather glibly about our inexhaustible natural resources.

It is in this regard that I welcome, as I said before, the introduction today of this resolution by the minister. Following on what I have already stated, we have now arrived at a time when I believe we should protect the rights of minorities. I would respectfully refer to the other place. This was one of the duties assigned to the other place at the time of confederation.

Legislation that would define the rights to water resources is overdue. The Ontario water resources commission is so far, the only hope, as it is aware of this problem confronting all of old Ontario and is making far-reaching studies in this connection.

I apologize to the house for taking up a little time in dealing with what is in a way

a local problem, but at the same time it affects all of old Ontario. I hope the necessary steps will be taken in the not too distant future to equitably distribute this great natural resource of ours, water.


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January 25, 1961

Mr. While:

Mr. Chairman, I listened with interest to the question about procedure and I feel that if I read one phrase from the resolution it will make what I have to say quite in order. I refer to the words: "and projects for the development and conservation of the soil and water resources of Canada".

I want to congratulate the minister and the government upon the introduction of this resolution which can be very far-reaching as far as agriculture is concerned. I must say that I have had quite a number of inquiries regarding the ramifications of the resolution and the bill which will follow. These inquiries show a very deep appreciation of the work envisaged by the minister in this resolution, and so I take pleasure in congratulating him and the government upon its introduction.

What I want to say will have particular reference to western Ontario, old Ontario. I have just been reading some words of the Prime Minister as found on page 44 of Hansard for November 21. At that time he said:

By 1990, unless something is done, Canada is going to run out of wholesome water.

That, Mr. Chairman and gentlemen, is only 30 years away. It was my privilege recently to visit Australia and for those hon. members who have not had that opportunity may I say that we do not appreciate to the full the great water resources that we in this country enjoy. The vast interior of that continent is arid or semi-arid, many areas having a rainfall of only three inches or less per year and temperatures for a good part of the time ranging from the 90's to 120. The Australians appreciate water and are making great strides in conserving all that they have.

This applies also to Israel. I also had the opportunity of visiting that land and seeing the great efforts they are putting forth there to bring fresh water to the Negeb desert. Therefore, Mr. Chairman, the problems of conservation of water, timber and soil in our country are great. Many years ago a sage, whose name I cannot recall at the moment said: "Show me an eroded soil and I will show you an eroded people".

The county from which I come, namely Middlesex, has less than 7 per cent of its land area in timber. Consequently water conservation has been and is a continuing and, in fact, a worsening problem. Neither has there been enough attention paid to nor have there been sufficient rewards for those farmers who have attempted to retain some bushland. Bush cover is basic to water conservation. Dams are spectacular-I have said this before-and they may be corrective to a degree but they are not fundamental.

While what I have to say is probably pertinent to the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources it also applies to this resolution. There is pending an agreement between the federal government, the provincial government and the Thames valley authority at Fanshawe. This agreement providing for the rounding out and developing of the Thames valley authority conservation project will be signed on Saturday next. It will be signed by the Minister of Northern Affairs and National Resources and for the province of Ontario by Mr. John Robarts, the minister of education for the province of Ontario and also the member for London North.

This project which was commenced many years ago resulted in the Fanshawe dam as the first major step. The proposed work now being undertaken will attempt to round out this development scheme and will cost approximately $10 million. This has been welcome news to the area and I emphasize that fact. I also want to endorse the project wholeheartedly. I do not want any misunderstanding about this matter. I want it thoroughly and distinctly understood that I endorse the project. However, in so doing, may I say that there are some remarks I wish to make and some points I wish to bring to the attention of the two ministers.

However, before embarking on this Thames valley project, may I say that there are some local problems which deserve consideration at the federal, provincial, municipal and Thames valley authority level. The Canada Water Conservation Act envisages the wise use of natural resources. When the Fanshawe and Thames valley project began the federal government of that day contributed 37i per

Agreements Respecting Marginal Lands cent to the cost but it was distinctly understood that federal money was not available for municipal water supply systems. However, the result has been that Fanshawe lake has become a city water reservoir. Flood control, while certainly a part of conservation, is not intended to be a flood control system for primarily one municipality. I refer you, Mr. Chairman, to an editorial in the London Free Press of July 30, 1956, which was some time ago. It states in part as follows:

A. M. Snider, chairman of the Ontario water resources commission, has warned the London public utilties that the city has no priority on water from Fanshawe lake-

However, in spite of these warnings and this knowledge there were incorporated in the Fanshawe dam facilities for the withdrawal of water that was impounded, and since that time up to 3J million gallons per day have been taken out of Fanshawe lake and put into the area adjacent where the public utilities commission of the city of London have deep wells. In other words, they are using the area as a filtration system and they are removing, as I said, 3i million gallons of water per day or 2,275 million gallons of water a year. I ask this question: What does the public utilities commission pay to the Thames valley authority for this water?

The story told at the time was that the increased flow of water by conservation methods would provide a greater flow of clean water down the Thames river through the city of London. However, what has actually happened is that the flow has not been increased to any great extent but the water was used, as I mentioned before, as a domestic supply, loaded with sewage in the process and dumped back into the river below the city to the detriment of everyone below.

The polluted Thames is a local disgrace. Local municipalities, local members of parliament and local M.L.A.'s believe that the solution to this problem is a pipe line from lake Huron or lake Erie. For over 50 years the city of London has depended on deep wells adjacent to the city for a municipal water supply. There are 57 wells, over 20 miles of pipe line and a filtration plant built during the past year at a cost of $993,000 or almost $1 million. Back in 1873, during the second session of the second legislature of the province of Ontario, there was passed a bill entitled "An act for the construction of water works for the city of London". Among the provisions of that act I want to bring this particular one to your attention:

5. It shall and may be lawful for the said commissioners, their agents, servants, and workmen.


Agreements Respecting Marginal Lands

from time to time, and at such times hereafter as they shall see fit, and they are hereby authorized and empowered to enter into and upon the lands of any person or persons, bodies politic or corporate, in the city of London, or within fifteen miles of the said city and to survey, set out, and ascertain such parts thereof as they may require for the purposes of the said water-works, and also to divert and appropriate any river, pond of water, spring or stream of water therein, as they shall judge suitable and proper-

That provision might have been all right in 1873 when there were a few thousands of people in the city of London. However, today we have a city with a population of 162,000.

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July 22, 1960

Mr. White:

I just want to say a word or two on this item. Westminster hospital in London, Ontario, is located in my constituency and consequently I feel considerable interest in the problems of the veterans. First of all I want to pay tribute to the sympathetic understanding of the minister of the problems of veterans. I also want to pay tribute to the excellent staff of doctors and nurses at Westminster hospital. All over my riding I hear compliments from time to time about the great work they are doing at that hospital for our disabled veterans.

Having said that there are other questions which arise from time to time. It was brought to my attention during the winter months that of the over 800 trees in the grounds some 413 were diseased or had scale or some other problem and were to be removed. I have received more complaints regarding the proposed removal of these trees than about any other thing which has been done in the area. I am glad to hear that the destruction of these trees has been delayed and that the Ontario department of forestry was going to make a survey of these trees. It is interesting to note that a company in the city received in 1955 almost $1,500 for spraying, pruning and fertilizing these trees, and in 1956 they received $1,497. But when we come to 1960 it is discovered that almost half of these trees are earmarked for destruction.

I am concerned about this because not only the hospital authorities but also the provincial highways department and the county organizations have developed a tree butchery campaign, and when you realize it takes a lifetime to grow these beautiful trees, we should hesitate before they are removed. I do not object to the removal of those trees which become dangerous. They should be removed. But I doubt if there is one tree in all the forests of Canada on which you cannot find a bug, a scale or a disease of some kind. Consequently the argument that these trees are all diseased does not hold water as far as I am concerned, and I hope that before a large number of them are removed provision will be made for young trees to be planted before the older ones are removed.

I also want to say a word or two on item 462, but before I sit down I want to ask the minister what progress is being made on the new building at Westminster hospital? (Translation):

Topic:   I960
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