I would like to ask the Minister of Finance where he expects this thing to end, of refusing those in the civil service their promotion, or rather the statutory increase to which they seem to be entitled. I am not going to argue the question upon the ground that has been discussed here on many occasions, whether they were legally entitled to it or not. The government have contended from time to time that they were not, while others have taken the opposite ground. But, I want to point out that we are constantly met with difficulties from that system being carried out. There is gross favouritism appearing upon the surface; I will not say that it is so in reality, but, I say the hon. gentlemen expose themselves to fair criticism when they do that kind of thing. Instead of laying down one rule which should be carried out in every instance, we find this exceptional treatment from year to year growing worse. We have estimates filled with that saving clause ' notwithstanding anything in the Civil Service Act to the contrary.' I will venture to say in looking over the estimates that it will be found to occur oftener than last year, for the simple reason that hon. gentlemen have taken it into their own hands to set aside the law. The right hon. gentleman seems to be amused at it. It is not a matter of amusement. If he were in the position of these gentlemen who have to live at the beck and nod of their superiors, with their merits no longer an element entitling them to receive what the law allows, he would not be amused. I say it is not fair, it is dealing unfairly with the civil service and putting them in an unfair position. The end can only come when we have adopted a system that the civil service of this country should be entirely independent of any government. We are now entering upon a
Topic: SUPPLY-THE RAILWAY QUESTION.