I certainly had no intention of taking part in this debate and I shall detain the committee only a very few minutes. I cannot let pass the contention of the hon. member for Sherbrooke that this government has done nothing for the eastern townships. He has very carefully refrained from suggesting any public works that could be carried out in Sherbrooke. Last year, after the public works program was parsed by this house, I
met several business men from Sherbrooke who were complaining and I put this question to them: What public building do you expect the government could erect in Sherbrooke? They could not name any, because there was not any. There is not a single dollar for my constituency of Compton, and I do not object. The only thing I could have the government build would be a post office, and unfortunately for myself the revenue of the post offices in my constituency which have not already public buildings is not sufficient to justify the building of a post office. This government is not throwing away money, it is trying to spend money where it can be spent usefully. The hon. member for Sherbrooke says that the government has done nothing for Sherbrooke. I say that this government has helped the city of Sherbrooke perhaps more than any other city in this dominion. My hon. friend admitted it himself when he made a report to the board of trade last fall and in his speech used these words, which I have already quoted in this house:
The situation is sensibly improving in our city. The 'business activity is increasing. The commerce is more stable, and unemployment diminished. This is the encouraging declaration of Charles B. Howard, member for Sherbrooke at Ottawa, contained in a message to members of that chamber last .night in submitting his report on the activities of the industrial committee, of which he is a member.
Further on he said:
In a comforting report made to the chamber of commerce, Mr. C. B. Howard reveals that our silk industries are running at full time at one hundred per cent capacity, and are closely followed by the Paton manufacturing company and all the iron and steel manufacturers.
Now I think this activity in the city of Sherbrooke is due chiefly to the tariff policy of this government, and the support whieh that policy has given to industries. I understand the hon. member for Sherbrooke is a heavy shareholder in the silk mills, and I have no doubt he gets a very nice profit from the shares he holds in these companies that are running at one hundred per cent capacity due to the protection afforded by this government.
Topic: PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM
Subtopic: WORKS, UNDERTAKINGS AND GUARANTEE OF RAILWAY EQUIPMENT SECURITIES TO CREATE EMPLOYMENT