House of Commons Hansard #40 of the 38th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was credit.

Topics

Remote Sensing Space Systems Act
Government Orders

1:50 p.m.

Liberal

Keith Martin Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, BC

In 30 seconds or less, Madam Speaker, the member as an NDP member may have a problem with the Liberal government, but it is the NDP that destroyed my province of British Columbia and Ontario, so she should not forget that.

On the issue of this bill, I cannot believe that the member would be so naive as to have a problem with countries being prepared to look at the detection of threats in their airspace. Countries do that as a responsibility to their citizens, to protect them.

I also cannot believe that she has a problem with the Minister of National Defence making decisions in the interests of our troops and our country based on the top security information that he has. If that is the case, it is a good thing that the NDP is in opposition, because heaven forbid if this country ever had it as the government.

Remote Sensing Space Systems Act
Government Orders

1:50 p.m.

Bloc

Claude Bachand Saint-Jean, QC

Madam Speaker, I must admit I find that the world has changed a lot. I come from Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, which has a very strong military tradition. I have always seen young people at the military base who wanted to become soldiers, and students who were preparing to become officers in the Canadian army.

I remember the 1970s, when I worked there as a student. The world was much different then. At the time, there were people who had to wear uniforms to face enemies who were also in uniforms. The situation has changed completely, because now our enemies do not wear uniforms. Nor do they announce themselves. We cannot negotiate with them and say, “In order to avoid a possible conflict, we should meet on a number of occasions. We should establish a diplomatic corps to try to solve the issue peacefully”. This is not how things are done today. Not only do our enemies not wear uniforms, they also hit us when we do not expect it. Just think of the World Trade Center, for example.

First, as a young student, I never would have thought that some day I would become a member of Parliament, because I was rather uncomfortable with political authority. When we are younger, we are more aggressive and ready to challenge established authority. Much to my surprise, I am now a member of Parliament, but I still try to maintain some of that questioning attitude. The world is changing so quickly that it is important to look at events with a kind of candid or fresh look, because now we are making decision here.

Also, I would certainly never have thought that some day, as members of Parliament and legislators, we would have to vote on legislation dealing with how to manage and regulate the use of satellites in space. So, the world has changed tremendously, and today we must assume our responsibilities.

If you were to ask the Bloc Québécois right now if it is important to regulate traffic in space and the way private companies can exercise their economic power in space, the answer would be yes, of course. We certainly agree with that point. But we have reservations. I know I will not have time to finish my speech. We will also have to talk about caution, because we do not agree with giving our full blessing and saying, “If it is only commercial, it is fine.”

The parliamentary secretary for national defence has given us signals that we really ought to be cautious. Why are we discussing this bill here, today, at a time when we are fully engaged in a debate on the missile defence shield, with respect to which satellites will have a significant role to play, and with respect to which we know that the Americans consider space the final frontier?

If we look at trends in human history, we realize that we have dominated this planet more and more over time. Certainly those who ruled the seas once dominated the planet. Just a few countries from western Europe—England, France, Spain—were the nations that ruled the seas until the Americans took over after the second world war. In fact, the starting point for their dominance was the sea. There were also many different nations who have dominated on the land, going back into history and prehistory. There has also been domination of the air. Airplanes became a very important instrument of war in military tactics.

Now we know that the Americans want to take the next step. It can be seen in all their documents. Whether studies come from the Pentagon or the American Secretary of State, they converge in one direction: American domination on land, on the sea and in the air must now be expanded into space. That is where we must be cautious.

There is already legislation on land and sea. There is also legislation governing the economy—people cannot just do whatever they want. Governments are there to ensure that everything is regulated. I think that is where we need to focus our efforts.

Some very important points have already been raised on matters such as privacy protection, but what we in the Bloc Québécois are concerned about is the issue of jurisdiction.

The bill refers to areas under provincial jurisdiction such as natural resource management, agricultural land management, and natural disasters. These are all matters of provincial jurisdiction and we find that point has been overlooked in the bill.

In conclusion, I hope that all my colleagues will stay here after the vote today in order to hear the end of my speech.

Canadian Association of Broadcasters
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Mario Silva Davenport, ON

Madam Speaker, from November 28 to November 30, the Canadian Association of Broadcasters met in Ottawa for their 78th annual convention.

Some 600 of the country's most senior private radio, television and specialty and pay services broadcasters attended the convention that had as its theme, “Private Broadcasting: Putting Canada First”. Topics of discussion ranged from cultural diversity issues to the future of local programming in Canada.

During their two days of meetings, they participated in activities that centred on the role of broadcasters in promoting Canada's identity.

I am pleased to congratulate the Canadian Association of Broadcasters and its members on a successful and well attended 78th annual meeting.

Fisheries
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

John Cummins Delta—Richmond East, BC

Madam Speaker, if fish were trees, the government sat idly by while one-quarter of the Fraser River basin was clear cut this summer.

In July and August approximately two million sockeye disappeared from the Fraser River between Mission and the upriver spawning grounds. This disaster will cost the British Columbia economy between $170 million and $500 million in 2008. Why? Because there will be no fishery in 2008, the next year in the cycle. There will be no commercial fishery, no sport fishery and no food, social and ceremonial fishery for natives. It will be 2020 before things return to normal.

What has been the government's response? It has put a Liberal friend in charge of the normal regular post-season review, and hopes the issue will go away.

What the industry and the people of British Columbia want is a judicial inquiry into the management of the fishery this past summer.

Animal Rights
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Lui Temelkovski Oak Ridges—Markham, ON

Madam Speaker, the debate over animal cruelty legislation has persisted since 1999. I agree that Bill C-22, introduced in the 3rd session of the 37th Parliament, effectively addressed the concerns of stakeholders on both sides of the debate.

Bill C-22 was the culmination of extensive negotiations and concessions on all sides. It would be a mistake to complicate matters by introducing substantially different legislation after this consensus has already been achieved.

The bill now has support from most major groups reflecting both animal welfare and animal industry perspectives. I hope to see the reintroduction of this legislation in the House at the earliest possible opportunity.

International Volunteer Day
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Bloc

Mario Laframboise Argenteuil—Mirabel, QC

Madam Speaker, last Sunday was International Volunteer Day. I would like to take this opportunity to pay tribute to a young man in my riding who stands above the crowd for his involvement with disabled people who do not qualify for government programs or plans and who are not covered by personal or group insurance.

Stéphane Braney, a resident of Lachute, is very familiar with this situation since he too has experienced it. On July 22, 1994, an accident in the family pool left Stéphane Braney a quadriplegic and changed his life forever.

This has not stopped him from being actively involved. He created the Stéphane Braney Foundation, which raises funds to help meet the needs of many disabled people so that they can enjoy a certain quality of life.

I rise to thank Stéphane Braney for his courage and his hard work in defending the cause of disabled people.

Foreign Affairs
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Liberal

Anita Neville Winnipeg South Centre, MB

Madam Speaker, I rise in the House today to acknowledge the leadership of the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs at the United Nations General Assembly this session.

For many years, Canadian voting practices on resolutions pertaining to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict have been lagging behind our balanced policy. This disconnect threatened our credibility as an honest broker in the region. It also placed our practice at odds with our policies.

Today, I would like to acknowledge the important beginning the government made by changing our votes on three unhelpful anti-Israeli resolutions in New York. Conduciveness to peace has to be the yardstick for these resolutions, and merit has to determine our vote.

Again, I congratulate the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs on their leadership to ensure that Canada's foreign policy toward the region is balanced both in word and in implementation.

Infrastructure
Statements By Members

2 p.m.

Conservative

Stockwell Day Okanagan—Coquihalla, BC

Madam Speaker, the Okanagan and Nickel Valleys have been experiencing incredible growth in the last few years. Anybody who has visited those areas would understand why. We are talking about the jewel of B.C.'s interior, ample opportunities for people and every reason for understanding why people would want to go there to raise their families and realize their hopes and dreams.

That growth has brought incredible infrastructure costs under virtually every mayor and council in the region. Logan Lake, Merritt, Westbank/Westside, Peachland, Summerland, Penticton, Naramata, Kaleden, Okanagan Falls and other areas in the constituency face huge infrastructure costs every day.

It is time for the government to step up to the plate and follow through with its commitment to our request to see federal gas tax dollars returned to the people and to the areas where they are needed most. It is time to stop hoarding our money and get it back to the people.

Dartmouth Choral Society
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Michael John Savage Dartmouth—Cole Harbour, NS

Mr. Speaker, this past Saturday the Dartmouth Choral Society continued its 50th year celebrations with its annual Christmas concert. The society was founded 50 years ago. It is the longest running continuous community choir in Atlantic Canada, and certainly one of the best.

Today the choir consists of 70 voices, individuals, married couples and two-generation family members, and is ably directed by Mr. Shawn Whynot with Pamela Burton as accompanist.

The choral society is an important part of the community of Dartmouth. It receives revenues through membership fees, fundraising and paid performances. It uses profits to support local charities, such as Feed Others of Dartmouth.

At this time of year music takes on an even more special meaning for us. We particularly appreciate great organizations like the Dartmouth Choral Society.

Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Bloc

Pauline Picard Drummond, QC

Mr. Speaker, some honours are very well deserved. A case in point is Prosper Dionne, the coordinator of the Drummondville subchapter of the Children's Wish Foundation of Canada, who has won the Laura Cole Volunteer of the Year Award for all of Canada.

In its quarterly newsletter, the foundation wrote:

You are truly an incredible role model and have helped to make thousands of children’s wishes come true!

Over the past 15 years, in Drummondville, Prosper Dionne and his team have made the wishes of 57 children with life-threatening diseases come true. Of these 57 children, 14 have now passed away. Confronted with sadness on a daily basis, Mr. Dionne prefers to remember the good side of his work with the foundation and the joy it has brought him.

Prosper, who dreams of bringing all his little angels together around the same table, let us join our voices to express our deepest gratitude to him who has such a talent for putting a bit of magic into the lives of sick children and their parents.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Denis Paradis Brome—Missisquoi, QC

Mr. Speaker, this morning, the coalition of mayors of municipalities affected by the closure of RCMP detachments in Quebec appeared before the Standing Committee on Justice, Human Rights, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

First, I want to congratulate the mayors on the quality of the report they presented. They clearly demonstrated the threat posed by removing the RCMP from our regions, a concern that is shared by the Quebec Liberal caucus, as well as many of our colleagues in this House.

The decision to close the RCMP regional detachments in Quebec needs to be reconsidered. We cannot allow our regions to be vulnerable to crime. Let me quote an except from the mayors' report:

Criminals and organized crime have no regional, municipal or other boundaries and they do not need consultation studies or to testify before committees in order to act. They are wherever we are, seeking the weak link. Let us not allow them to take over our territory, because you can be sure they will take it, if they have not already done so.

Let us act while there is still time.

Agriculture
Statements By Members

2:05 p.m.

Conservative

Barry Devolin Haliburton—Kawartha Lakes—Brock, ON

Mr. Speaker, farmers across Canada agree on one thing, and that is the CAIS program does not work and it needs a major overhaul.

In my opinion, the most compelling evidence of the failure of CAIS is the fact that most farmers have not even bothered to sign up for the program yet, almost three years after it was first introduced. In Kawartha Lakes, where I come from, it has been reported that just 47 out of several hundred farmers have opened CAIS accounts.

If CAIS is as great as the Liberals say, why have more farmers not signed up for it? There are only two possible answers to that question. Either farmers are making a mistake because they do not understand what is good for them, or this really is a lousy program that farmers rightly understand is of little value to them.

In my opinion, I would say the farmers are right.

If the Liberals really want to make CAIS work, they should not rest until a majority of farmers deem it worth their while to sign up for an overhauled CAIS program. It is time for the government to stop proclaiming the virtues of an obviously flawed program and get on with the job of fixing it.

Polyvalente A.M. Sormany
Statements By Members

December 7th, 2004 / 2:05 p.m.

Liberal

Jean-Claude D'Amours Madawaska—Restigouche, NB

Mr. Speaker, last week, I had the opportunity to meet two groups of students at the Polyvalente A.M. Sormany, in Edmunston, New Brunswick, to discuss with them my role as member of Parliament and the role of the government. I can attest to the interest these young people have in Canadian politics.

The questions asked by these students were surprisingly relevant, and I am convinced that such meetings should take place more frequently to stimulate the interest of young Canadians in Canadian politics.

I wish to thank teacher Simon Nadeau and his students for inviting me to their class. I hope that this experience proved as profitable for them as it was for me.

Human Rights
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

NDP

Tony Martin Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Mr. Speaker, this past weekend in Sault Ste. Marie I attended a remarkable meeting at St. Matthew's Anglican Church. It was part of a national women's peace building tour hosted by KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives. This meeting shone a light on the devastating effects of conflict on human rights, with a particular emphasis on the impact war has on women.

Elizabeth Majok from the New Sudan Council of Churches spoke of the harm done to the Sudanese people, first by Talisman and now by Chinese companies taking jobs from her fellow countrymen in the oil fields. She made it clear that the Canadian government must exercise greater leadership at the United Nations to influence the international community. Any peace agreement must affirm the principles of human rights, justice, self-determination, pluralism, as well as address the root causes of the different conflicts in Sudan.

I have petitions, with 3,000 signatures, that make these points. I will be tabling them in the House next week.

Firearms Registry
Statements By Members

2:10 p.m.

Conservative

Joy Smith Kildonan—St. Paul, MB

Mr. Speaker, the federal gun registry will not be fully operational until 2007, 12 years after it was approved by Parliament and with a price tag of over $1 billion, representing cost overruns of nearly 7,000%, ranking the gun registry as one of the biggest Liberal lies in a long list of others.

A constituent of mine recently contacted me to inform me that while he was asked to pay to renew his licence, friends and family members were being given free renewals. Apparently, the government thinks it is fair to charge some Canadians for something while it lets others do it for free. If nothing else, government programs should at least be equally applied.

It is time for the government to admit that it was wrong to implement this registry, that it was wrong to spend more than a billion dollars on it and that it is willing to work with this side of the House to find solutions to gun violence that will work for Canadians.