House of Commons Hansard #4 of the 35th Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament's site.) The word of the day was economic.


Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:40 a.m.


Ralph Goodale Liberal Regina—Wascana, SK

I am pleased to have the opportunity to briefly respond to the question. I am sure we will have other opportunities to consider the questions raised by the hon. member in greater detail. The member certainly has touched upon some vital questions in terms of the future of Canadian agriculture.

I mentioned in my remarks that we would be reviewing the whole system of farm safety net programs and hopefully moving toward the concept of whole farm income safety nets for the future. They have a number of advantages from our domestic point of view. The whole farm income concept also has the great advantage of being largely production and market neutral. Therefore it is less likely to be subject to any violation of the new GATT. That is one of the reasons we are very interested in this concept of whole farm income safety nets. That would touch upon many of the support programs the hon. member has referred to, including crop insurance and so forth.

The area is under review. We have a conference coming up in February to begin the process of that review. Working with the provinces, the farmers and farm organizations, I think we can arrive perhaps at the end of 1994 at a much clearer understanding about how we need to adjust our programs to ensure they are doing the job properly for Canadian farmers.

The answer on the Western Grain Transportation Act would necessarily be long. I assure the hon. member it is a subject which is very likely to be affected at least in some way by the implications of the GATT. It is a subject matter that we will undoubtedly revisit in this House on many occasions as I consult, as I ought to do, before any changes are made.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

January 20th, 1994 / 10:45 a.m.


Stephen Harper Reform Calgary West, AB

Madam Speaker, this is my first opportunity to address the House at length. I am sure you are getting tired of hearing that but two-thirds of us are new members. Many of us who have been here in the past are in new roles, as are you. I congratulate you on your appointment to that role.

At the beginning of these new roles or the beginning of our careers we have the opportunity to think longer term about the problems of our country than perhaps parliamentarians have done in the past.

Many people in my constituency have built successful careers, homes and families by thinking longer term in their affairs. Now they have taken a brave step this time in electing a new MP from a new political party to represent them for the next four or five years.

I want to take a moment to say I am greatly honoured by that election. It is an overwhelming honour and I plan to do my best to fulfil their expectations. We certainly know what happens when you forget who sent you here. The Prime Minister alluded to that yesterday. I hope that I and this Parliament do not let the people of Canada down, as I feel the last Parliament did.

In my particular case I was elected from an urban riding, a riding entirely within the city of Calgary that has 100,000 people. It is in the western suburbs of Calgary. We have a large military base. We have two post-secondary institutions.

In spite of that, my riding and our city reflect largely a private sector character. We do not have a federal or provincial government. We are one of the larger cities that does not.

Of course we have experienced the ups and downs that Alberta has had in the past decade largely through and because of our dependence on the oil industry. In spite of that there is a broadening of our industry in Calgary historically from agriculture to energy, now to services. This broadening reflects our entrepreneurial spirit in the west, in Alberta and in Calgary in particular.

This growth in the view of most Calgarians, I think I am safe to say, has been not so much with the help of government as in spite of it and in spite of the federal government in particular.

I was a newcomer to Alberta when a distant government imposed policies that brought an end to the boom times that brought me to Alberta to begin with. Of course I am referring to the national energy program. No Canadian can live through an experience like that without it influencing greatly his or her thinking about government and about our country. In spite of that thinking and in spite of the drain the federal government has often imposed on Albertans, Albertans have never wavered in their patriotism or in their optimism about the future.

Today the federal government presents not hopes but obstacles to economic recovery. The obstacles are most clearly represented by the national debt and the deficits adding to it which we are experiencing and have experienced in the past number of years. I am not going to recount the statistics. I am an economist and that would be economics and that is a dangerous

combination. Let me talk instead about what these numbers mean.

In the election campaign my colleagues and I in the Reform Party argued strongly about the need to understand the long-term link between fiscal mismanagement and economic recession and decline. We argued against the view that we should create jobs rather than fix the financial problem, not because we oppose creating jobs but because these are not conflicting objectives. They are the same objective.

Countries like companies or households that mismanage their financial affairs do not create jobs. They destroy them. Households, businesses, families and governments that mismanage their affairs do not fulfil dreams. Those who mismanage their affairs watch their dreams slowly slip away.

Many of my generation, young professionals, the backbone of the future of Canada, have left Canada, are leaving Canada or are thinking of leaving Canada because they fear the high taxes and the declining services that this mismanagement has brought about and may worsen in the future.

Let me not preach from the Reform Party policy manual. Let me quote the government itself. For members who have not read it, Canada's Economic Challenges contains a very good summary of our economic and financial situation. It lays out better than I could all the relevant numbers on the deficit and debt and the impact on our economy, such as the fact that it absorbs our domestic savings, increases our foreign indebtedness, worsening our current account, lowering national income, our potential growth, reducing our fiscal flexibility, threatening our social programs, increasing our tax burden, raising real interest costs and decreasing our competitiveness. It is all there.

Those are not short-term problems. They are not caused by the recession. A short spurt in growth or activity will not resolve them. The chapter is illustrated with dozens of statistics.

Why then would the same government that released this book also release the throne speech this week and turn its attention instead to spending priorities and in particular to the much ballyhooed infrastructure program. That is a $6 billion commitment, $2 billion sought from this Parliament to kick start the Canadian economy, as if it is possible to do such a thing as kick-start an economy.

On reading the briefing notes for the program it will be noticed there are no fewer than four program objectives and nine related criteria. There are in fact lots of objectives. There are no clear priorities. None of these objectives is new to the program spending that parliaments have passed before. We are therefore led to ask why the government believes that another $2 billion would kick start an economy in a way the first $160 billion of spending this year has been unable to do.

Let us be clear about the magnitudes involved. In the case of Alberta we are talking about $88 million against an economy of $70 billion and an infrastructure investment of at least $1 billion a year. These are hardly kick start kinds of numbers. That is the magnitude and context of the program.

I do not want to quarrel with infrastructure as a priority or even a higher priority than it has been in the past. What I want to do is simply suggest that it will not fulfil the objectives stated by the government and the raised expectations of consumers, taxpayers and investors. It is short-term thinking about jobs and activities that has long-term consequences in terms of employment and output and that has been the past generation as we have seen it.

I ask members, especially government members, to give strong consideration to this before they cast their votes on this matter and on the legislative program that will flow from the throne speech. Members opposite will be held responsible by the public for the performance of the Canadian economy in the next four years.

Possibly the infrastructure program will deliver some short-term benefits and some short-term visibility. But in the long term, by the next election-that at least we will talk about as our long term-the infrastructure program will long be passed and we will be stuck with the bills for it.

I suggest that until the government has contemplated a way to credibly finance these things and to fit these within the $153 billion spending cap that we suggest it should re-examine these priorities.

I ask government members to give strong consideration to this aspect of fiscal discipline, the subamendment we propose, to support and vote for it and to include it in the speech from the throne. On that basis we would be building a more successful government program, not just from our standpoint but also for the potential of their own re-election in four years.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

Broadview—Greenwood Ontario


Dennis Mills LiberalParliamentary Secretary to Minister of Industry

Madam Speaker, I would like to begin by congratulating the member for Calgary West on his maiden speech in the House of Commons. I know it will be a constructive experience over the next four or five years.

I would like to get right to my question because I know this member by reputation and I know he cares about small and medium sized businesses in this country, especially in his own community and in his own province. I noted that he did not seem

to spend a lot of time in his opening remarks commenting on the difficulty that small business is having getting access to capital.

The Prime Minister said repeatedly during the campaign, in the red book and in the speech from the throne, that small and medium sized businesses would really be the engine for putting people back to work. The greatest hope for putting people back to work rests with the entrepreneurial spirit in that small business area. We all know that the banks are really not co-operating with that sector.

I wonder if the member could explain to this House if the Reform Party shares the view of our party that the financial institutions of this country really have to deal with putting the economy back on track. I wonder if the member would stand and say that the Reform Party will join with us in making sure that the banks do their job for small businesses.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.


Stephen Harper Reform Calgary West, AB

Madam Speaker, I thank the hon. member for his question and for his congratulations. I have known the hon. member for some time and it is a delight to be able to sit with him in this Chamber.

Of course there was not time in my speech to address all of the concerns that the hon. member would like me to address. If in future the rules of the House are altered so that I can speak at greater length, I would be delighted to do so.

The member raises the question of small and medium sized business and their access to capital. My supporters, particularly my association, are predominantly people who work in small and medium sized business and they voted for our party I suspect precisely because they share our concerns.

I would suggest to the government that certainly there are problems with access to capital in the banking sector. However, I would suggest that what the government should do before it starts figuring out how to run the banks and how to run small and medium sized businesses and all kinds of other institutions that it run itself so that small and medium sized businesses have access to capital.

According to the projections of the Minister of Finance, in this financial year we will be borrowing up to $45 billion in the financial markets. Certainly some of this money, if not a large part of it, would be available to small and medium sized businesses if the government would undertake the credible program of deficit reduction that is being advanced through our subamendment. If we do not do that, it would be ridiculous to try to alter the rules of the banking system if the capital itself is being tied up by the Government of Canada which is more than absorbing our domestic savings. That is all in the book his own government has put out.

I would suggest that the way to deal with the problem of capital access for small and medium sized businesses-and the message from the people in my constituency-is to deal first with releasing those funds through deficit reduction and only then should we deal with the problems in other institutional arrangements.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mrs. Maheu)

The hon. member's time has expired.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.


Dennis Mills Liberal Broadview—Greenwood, ON

Madam Speaker, on a point of order. Is not the question and answer period 10 minutes?

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mrs. Maheu)

It is five minutes on a ten-minute debate. They are splitting their time.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

10:55 a.m.


Nelson Riis NDP Kamloops, BC

Madam Speaker, a point of order. I have listened very carefully to the very thoughtful comments of my colleague. Considering the importance and the nature of the tax system and the funding for small business, would the House permit two or three other questions in response to the hon. member's comments? Can we have unanimous consent to allow a few more questions to be put to the member?

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mrs. Maheu)

Is it the will of the House to allow a few more questions?

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11 a.m.


Fernand Robichaud Liberal Beauséjour, NB

Madam Speaker, I thought there was a consensus and that the Speaker had been informed that we would split the time allotted, that is ten minutes for a speech, followed by a five-minute question period. I would like us to stick with this formula to give more people a chance to speak to this debate, otherwise each member could considerably exceed the time limit and I do want as many hon. members as possible to have the opportunity to speak.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mrs. Maheu)

Unfortunately consent is denied.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11 a.m.


Nelson Riis NDP Kamloops, BC

Madam Speaker, a point of order. I appreciate the point made by my hon. friend. If the concern is to allow as many members to speak to this important debate as possible, we can always extend the hours for people to do that.

My point was that the past speaker was a very important spokesperson for the Reform Party and an obvious person of whom to ask a number of questions.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11 a.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mrs. Maheu)

There will be another chance for questions unless the next speaker is willing to cede his time.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11 a.m.


John Williams Reform St. Albert, AB

Madam Speaker, I would like to start by congratulating you on your election to the Chair of this honourable House.

I presume that while you waited with bated breath, while your colleagues took a second look before firmly ensconcing you in the Chair, but I have no doubt whatsoever in your ability to lead us in our deliberations with decorum and respect.

I would also like to congratulate the Prime Minister and his colleagues. Who would have predicted that the red book which was so long on rhetoric and so short on substance could have lead to such a stunning and upset victory?

I would also like to thank the citizens of the St. Albert constituency for the confidence they expressed in me. I spoke to them during the election campaign about fiscal prudence and sound management of the public purse. I believe it was their desire that I stand in this House and carry that message to the government.

Hon. members can be assured that I will persistently advocate the principle of fiscal responsibility during my tenure in this House.

To the hon. member for Calgary Southwest, my congratulations. Of all the particular challenges that he could have chosen, he selected a riding that was perceived to be the most daunting. Yet he triumphed in the most outstanding manner. I look forward to working with him and the rest of my Reform colleagues as we explain to all Canadians our vision of a new Canada which was so eloquently articulated by the member for Calgary Southwest "as a balanced democratic federation of provinces, distinguished by the conservation of its magnificent environment, the viability of its economy, acceptance of its social responsibilities and recognition of the equality and uniqueness of all its provinces and citizens".

I would also like to recognize the hon. member for Lac-Saint-Jean and his colleagues. Their agenda differs from ours but I hope that before the end of this Parliament the issues that currently pull this country apart will eventually pull us together to realize our hope of a new Canada.

His Excellency the Governor General spoke of his government's desire to create jobs for the hundreds of thousands of Canadians who are losing hope and faith in the economic miracle that has been Canada's until the last number of years. We have seen feeble attempts to maintain a robust economy on a philosophy of borrowing and spending our way to prosperity. That false god of prosperity without effort has taken this country into the long dark tunnel leading to economic ruin. We now have double digit unemployment, mushrooming welfare rolls, regions dependent on government handouts; in essence, breadwinners without bread. That story is repeated a million times across this land. Canadians are crying out for leadership, vision, hope, but most of all for jobs and careers. But where do they turn when their hope diminishes with each passing day? There is no plan in place for them to realize their hopes and aspirations.

Over 30 per cent of every tax dollar collected by this government is now paid to bankers and investors as interest on the money that we have already spent. As the debt continues to mushroom, so too does the cost of servicing that debt. On our current economic path Canadians can only look forward to a future of higher taxes and declining services while they work to fill the pockets of lenders and investors.

The Auditor General said in his report tabled in this House yesterday: "Looking at where we have been is not enough; it is also necessary to see where we are going". We are going down the road to economic ruin. He also said: "Hard choices lie ahead".

This government must choose the road to a balanced budget. That is the hard choice. That road is not paved with more social programs that destroy the initiative of Canadians to work. It is not paved with simple quick fix band-aids such as the $6 billion infrastructure program. A balanced budget means that we as Canadians accept the consequences of the follies of previous governments. The hard choice is that only 70 per cent of tax dollars collected can be returned to Canadians by way of services delivered. If we do not accept that consequence today, tomorrow we will have to live with only 60 per cent, or even less, being returned in services to Canadians.

That is the hard choice. Do we bite the bullet now or do we wait until it is too late?

During the election campaign we, as Reformers, spelled out a complete program to balance the budget. Two and a half million Canadians voted for that program. They are prepared to make that hard choice now, yet there is little evidence in the speech from the throne that the government has even heard the message. How long before the government does the right thing and makes that hard choice?

We want jobs in this country. The myth that deficit financing creates jobs was debunked long ago. If that theory worked there would not be a single unemployed Canadian today.

Where do we go from here? I ask this government to make a commitment now to balance the budget by the end of this Parliament. Business is looking for a signal that the upward spiral of government spending will come to an end. With that signal we will know that tax increases will no longer be the order of the day. Declining services will not be the way of the future. If business can believe that this government has the resolve to make these hard choices then investment will follow. That is the creator of real jobs. The private sector will pick up where the public sector leaves off.

Canada was forged by people who want to build a future for themselves and their children. I came to this country to participate in a young and vibrant nation but I have watched as socialism has wrung this vitality dry. Our economy is feeble and we must rebuild it for our children. Our heritage is free enterprise. It created our prosperity. It developed products and

innovations that raised our standard of living. It was not social programs that gave us wealth but the opportunity to work hard and keep what we had made. That was the driving force that built this country.

The hard choice has a great future. If we balance the budget lower taxation will come. Jobs will be created. Horizons will be opened up. We will have the money to educate our children, look after our old, the sick and the poor and still be able to compete with any nation in the world. Jobs come from trade not from infrastructure programs.

To sum up, we must turn this country around and start anew. I look for leadership and vision from my honourable colleagues across the floor. Hard choices must be made. History has always glorified leaders who have reached beyond themselves and led their nation through the dark tunnel to the light, which in our case is renewed prosperity without debt.

I issue this challenge: will this government commit itself now to balancing the budget by the end of this Parliament? The first step down the hard road is to approve the subamendment by the member for Calgary Southwest to cap federal spending at $153 billion. I urge all members of this House to vote in favour of the subamendment.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:10 a.m.


Nelson Riis NDP Kamloops, BC

Madam Speaker, I congratulate my hon. friend on his maiden speech in the House. One of the main points he raised referred to the fact that we have to get our deficit under control.

One of the causes of our deficit problem is the amount of money the federal government fails to collect. It is an issue that more of us should get very serious about when we consider that a major preoccupation of many Canadians has now become purchasing contraband cigarettes and illegal liquor.

We found from the Auditor General's report yesterday that tens of thousands of businesses appear to be collecting the GST and not remitting it to the federal government. This obviously indicates a clear loss of faith in our tax system, to say nothing of the underground economy that probably includes almost everybody in one form or another through cash transactions or a barter system designed to avoid paying tax.

Does my friend share the view that one of the major steps to be taken in terms of reducing the deficit would be to close off some of the more obviously unfair tax exemptions that exist in our tax system to begin restoring faith in the system so that people will again be prepared to participate in the revenue collection of the country, knowing that our system is fair and more just?

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:10 a.m.


John Williams Reform St. Albert, AB

Madam Speaker, in response to the question of the hon. member for Kamloops, I mentioned in my speech that we have a feeble economy. Taxes are too high. This is why we find today that businesses are struggling to pay the taxes to keep the government afloat. Even then the government still needs another $40 billion or more to pay its bills.

If we are going to look for a vibrant and strong economy we must look forward to the day when investment overtakes spending by the government. We must also look forward to the day when taxes start to come down and affordability of taxes comes within the realm of everybody to pay their fair share.

We always agree with the need for equality but I think the focus of the government has to be toward a balanced budget. It can collect the taxes due in order to do so but we must look forward to the day when we see taxes coming down and a greater willingness by Canadian people to participate in paying for the government of this country.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:10 a.m.


André Caron Bloc Jonquière, QC

Madam Speaker, I listened carefully to the hon. member's words. I was surprised to hear his stand on social programs, because I understood him to say that social programs destroyed the initiative of Canadians and should therefore be eliminated.

This particular position is disappointing to me because what I heard from the voters of Jonquière during the election campaign was that Canada and Quebec have always been concerned about the weakest and the most disadvantaged. My constituents said clearly to me that they do not believe people who get rich by profiting from private enterprise will be generous enough to take care of the disadvantaged, the sick and the poor.

I have a question for the hon. member and I hope he will have the time to respond. I will be brief. Does he know of many cases where people who became wealthy through their work or their business were successful in setting up programs or providing health care and social services, or services to the unemployed and the disadvantaged on a scale equal to what we now have in Canada?

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:15 a.m.


John Williams Reform St. Albert, AB

Madam Speaker, in response to the hon. member's question, I think we have to recognize that this country was born and developed out of initiative. We very much recognize our social obligations to Canadians who are old, those who are sick and those in unfortunate circumstances who are unable to look after themselves. Recognizing its responsibilities in these areas shows the maturity of any society. I would be the last to suggest that we shun that responsibility.

We also have a responsibility to those who are prepared to lead the country in its economic growth. We have to give recognition to them that prosperity comes from that direction. As I said, we do not want the government to destroy the opportunities and initiatives of people to develop the country and continue to provide the growth and the jobs we so badly need.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:15 a.m.


John Maloney Liberal Erie, ON

Madam Speaker, my first words in this House must be those of appreciation for the privilege and honour of representing the riding of Erie. I would like to thank its voters for their trust and confidence without which I would not be here. I am aware of my responsibility to my constituents and indeed to all citizens of this country and I hope I will be equal to this task. I will not forget where I came from or who put me there. I will advance their position from the highest government in the land. I cannot deliver perfection but I can deliver accessibility, honesty and integrity.

On a personal note I would also like to thank my wife, Sherrie, and my children, Megan, Patrick, Alanna, Andrew and Sarah, for allowing me this privilege. I will endeavour to keep their personal sacrifices as minimal as possible.

I wish to congratulate you, Madam Speaker, on your appointment to this esteemed office of which you are most worthy.

I would further like to take this opportunity to congratulate the hon. member for Welland-St. Catharines-Thorold on his election as Speaker to this 35th Parliament, a position of honour and responsibility unequalled in this House. I have enjoyed his sage advice over the years and regret the non-partisan aspect of his office now denies me the privilege of his counsel.

I further wish to congratulate the mover of the Address in Reply to the Speech from the Throne, the hon. member for Bruce-Grey, and the seconder, the hon. member for Madawaska-Victoria, on their addresses.

It is indeed a great honour for me to be in this Parliament, especially under such an honourable leader as the Prime Minister. It is a pleasure for me in my maiden address to introduce the riding of Erie to my fellow members of Parliament.

Having been born and raised in Erie it seemed only fitting that on finishing my formal education I would return to Erie. For many years I served on a great number of local committees and boards. This exposure to local issues and people made my decision to enter federal politics a little easier. I believe that Erie deserves the best representation possible in Ottawa and I hope I am worthy of that responsibility.

As some may gather from the name, Erie riding follows the north shore of Lake Erie, one of the fine Great Lakes. It extends from the border town of Fort Erie in the east to the western boundary of the regional municipality of Niagara. It is a rural-urban riding encompassing the city of Port Colborne, the southern portion of the city of Welland, as well as the towns of Fort Erie, Pelham, West Lincoln, and the township of Wainfleet.

This is only geography and does no justice to describing the heart of this riding. Erie riding was blessed with many Canadian riches. Our history, agricultural climate, economic potential and traditions in my humble opinion are unparalleled in any other part of Canada.

Many historical battles of the War of 1812 were fought on Erie soil. Erie also saw the likes of William Lyon Mackenzie during the Upper Canada rebellion of 1837 and the Fenian raids of the 1860s.

The early settlers of Erie were joined by the United Empire Loyalists, a group of people dedicated to what would later become the Dominion of Canada. Over the years our riding was further blessed with healthy immigration from all European countries and most recently from the Pacific Rim. There has also been lateral migration from other areas of Canada: from the west, from the maritimes and from la belle province de Québec , all attracted by the lushness and opportunity that Erie offered. The riding indeed reflects the multicultural heritage that makes our country so strong. I hope I may embody some of their independent, industrious and enthusiastic spirit as I work for my constituents and dedicate myself to community and country.

On the very eastern boundary of Erie riding is the Niagara River which divides Canada from our neighbour, the United States. Our proximity to the American border offers us opportunities for trade and industrial development that will help enhance and diversify our economy well into the 21st century.

Apart from the historical significance, development potential and beauty of the riding, the moderate climate and fertile soil have made Erie famous for its fresh produce, bountiful orchards and vineyards. The Niagara region is one of the best grape growing regions in the world and forms the basis of Canada's wine industry. Poultry and dairy farming represent a solid mainstay in Erie's economy as well as that of our nation.

The climate and charm of Erie attracts a great number of tourists who come to enjoy the water and beaches of Lake Erie, to browse through our heritage museums and historic sites, to marvel at the ships plying the Welland Canal, an integral part of the St. Lawrence seaway system, or just to enjoy the pleasant surroundings and chat with our friendly residents.

Due to the rural nature of my riding many Erie residents embrace a traditional way of life. This lifestyle is rooted in their heritage and must be preserved. This preservation is a goal of mine during my first term in office. I support the maintenance of

rail and postal services to these people. I am happy to be a member of a party that also encourages the rural way of life.

I would be remiss if I did not commend the Canadian public for taking the opportunity of electing a majority Liberal government. They knew that the Liberal Party was a party with a plan, as we heard in His Excellency's throne speech. It is obvious it is the priority of this government to put unemployed Canadians back to work, to give them back their pride in employment. Erie riding is struggling with an unemployment figure of approximately 15 per cent of the work force, an unacceptable level.

The throne speech outlines several initiatives that are fundamental to this new Parliament, a new Parliament I may add that is in a position to make a real difference to Canadians. These major proposals impact on every community regardless of a member's political affiliation and follow the themes of integrity, economy and society.

Integrity in government is an issue that must be dealt with before we begin debating our significant reforms. The conduct and ethics of Parliament will determine how such debates are carried out. We will achieve little unless members are permitted the courtesy to voice their concerns.

In his address to this House on Monday the Speaker stated:

Yet perhaps never in our history have we enjoyed a less favourable opinion on the part of. . .Canadians.

Before anything meaningful can be done in this House we have a duty as representatives to earn the confidence and trust of our fellow Canadians as we conduct our business.

Our government, as promised, is committed to integrity and honesty. We have proposed cuts to members' services and allowances, reduced political staff, the elimination of perks and the reform of MPs' pension plans. The recommendation of the appointment of an ethics counsellor, legislation to bring lobbying out in the open and reform measures to give members of Parliament and House of Commons a greater role in Parliament are very refreshing and very necessary changes.

As a newly elected member of Parliament I am quickly learning how complex many constituents' requests are, but I would suggest that when circumstances are beyond our control we deal forthrightly with the constituents in question.

We are all individuals representing distinct ridings. Therefore it is unlikely that we will agree with every proposal and perspective in this House. Nevertheless we must respect other views and accept the outcome as decided by the greatest number of members.

On Tuesday this government announced its plans to create a more active economy. This goal is desired by all Canadians.

As I mentioned before, the Erie riding embraces the creation of jobs through such programs as the renewal and expansion of infrastructure. I am pleased to say I have already corresponded with Erie riding mayors regarding the steps already taken by this government to initiate renewal at the local level.

I applaud this government for its swift action on launching and obtaining agreements on the infrastructure program.

Another change announced yesterday was the replacement of the goods and services tax or the GST as it is commonly known. It is one of the most reprehensible taxes ever imposed and Canadians have demanded its discontinuation. We cannot impose upon Canadians something that is so vehemently objected to when we have been chosen by them to communicate and reflect their views. This is an arrogance the government does not need.

The youth of our country are our greatest asset. However, as the father of five children I am well aware of the growing despondency of our youth with respect to their futures. I welcome the creation of a youth service corps and a national apprenticeship program which will give more direction and employment to our children and youth.

I was also particularly pleased to see so many initiatives designed to strengthen the fabric of this nation which will continue to make our fine Canadian society the envy of the world.

The environmental assessment act will be well received by all Canadians and the benefits of this act will be appreciated for generations. Representing a riding that is affected by the Great Lakes I hope to see measures within that act to continue to clean up our waters and to prevent further pollution.

In the short period of time I have held this office I have heard from my own constituents as well as many others across the country who are deeply concerned about crime, justice and personal safety.

This government announced its intention on Tuesday to foster safer communities for all Canadians, especially for women and children. I do not believe that any Canadian, male or female, should be apprehensive about his or her safety. However, I know that this fear exists and is real for many. I am pleased to be part of a team that believes the problems of criminal justice and the penal system are deserving of attention and action.

In the area of aboriginal affairs I welcome the announcement that the implementation of inherent aboriginal self-government

will begin. Erie riding has a substantial urban aboriginal population and I look forward to learning how self-government will impact on this community.

As I sit in this Chamber among my colleagues I realize that despite political affiliation we also have the same goals of doing the best job possible for the constituency. Many great members have come and gone before us with similar ambitions. I salute all of those who have come to this place to represent Canadians. As we all know, it is not an easy task.

A great man once stood in this House and in his maiden address said: "I suggest that the time has come for action. We have a tremendous opportunity-the people of Canada look to us; the people of Canada trust in us; the people of Canada are counting on us; in heaven's name, let us not fail them". That man, a predecessor to the free spirits who now sit in this House, was Mr. Tommy Douglas. Mr. Douglas had a vision of a new Canada. I hope that within ourselves each of us also has a vision.

It is fitting to begin this Parliament at the start of a new year for this is the time when resolutions are made. In a recent letter received from Rural Dignity of Canada there was a quote from a 4-H publication. It reads: "May the thoughts in our heads blend with the compassion in our hearts, to guide our hands as they safeguard the health of those things we care most for: our loved ones, our communities and our world, throughout the coming year".

I encourage members to keep these thoughts in mind and in action in the months and years to come as we work for Canadians everywhere, as we work for a strong and united Canada. And when at some unknown future time we leave this Chamber for the final time we can proudly hold our heads high and each of us will be able to say: "I made a difference".

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:25 a.m.


Suzanne Tremblay Bloc Rimouski—Témiscouata, QC

Madam Speaker, I am happy to see that some of our friends opposite do care about what is going on in their ridings and are committed to standing up for their constituents.

They can join us in so doing, as we are here to look after the interests of Quebecers. Welcome, sir. Join the club.

I would also like to take this opportunity to tell the hon. member that our regions as well are faced with major problems, which we certainly intend to bring up over and over again. In my riding for example, the previous government shut down the CBC station which provided a vital link within the community. So, I will take every opportunity to remind this House of what a vicious deed this was, as regions can no longer make themselves heard from government because of the lack of communication. I will make this point every time I rise in this House until the CBC and the new government get the message that regions must be given the means to communicate again, first among themselves, and then with the rest of the country, from coast to coast.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:30 a.m.


Bernard Deshaies Bloc Abitibi, QC

Madam Speaker, dear colleagues, I am pleasantly surprised to see the strong interest shown by the hon. member for his riding, since I represent the constituency of Abitibi, which may not be as beautiful as the hon. member's riding, but which, for me, is nevertheless the nicest one.

The people in the riding of Abitibi, possibly the largest one in Canada after the Northwest Territories, managed from the very beginning, early in the twentieth century, to clear the land and develop agriculture. It is through their daily efforts that these people were able to develop this region which is not as old as that of the hon. member, but of which I am very proud.

I am also pleasantly surprised to see that some members of this House have large families. I personally have seven children. Therefore, I believe that the future of our children must be the top priority for Canada as well as for Quebec.

I want to emphasize the problems which I experienced during the election campaign in my riding of Abitibi, where regional development is so important. I am not referring to problems linked to facing an opponent but, rather, to the difficulty of meeting people and listening to their concerns, which have to do with finding work, for example in the case of workers who have to rely on social assistance and who, at fifty years of age, are losing hope of finding a new job.

I am honoured to rise for the first time in the House and I want to take this opportunity to discuss the problems which exist in my riding and to ask you, the government members, the Liberal government, to listen to people in all those ridings who expect you to succeed in your endeavours. It is a fact that we, on this side of the House, will take a close look at your legislation. If you table good bills we will certainly support them, and the Reform Party members have also said they will: if it is good legislation, we will not purposely criticize it. On the contrary, we will support it.

But you can be sure that people in my riding, who elected me to represent them in this House, want Canada to do better, regardless of the decision they will have to make in the next few years.

I want to tell the hon. member for Erie that goods and services in this country are traded between provinces. In our family business we would routinely, as wholesalers, buy products from your region, whether it was fruits or vegetables. We have to learn to accept each other's choices.

Yesterday, I listened to the speech made by the hon. member for Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke, who is the dean in this House and who spoke about communication. I hope that throughout this session both sides of the House will communicate more and more and learn to better understand each other's interests.

I conclude by stating my keen interest in the role of this House, and in the future I intend to give even more substance to my questions.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:35 a.m.


Rose-Marie Ur Liberal Lambton—Middlesex, ON

Madam Speaker, I wish to congratulate the hon. member for Erie on his maiden speech. I too am proud to say that I have been elected to represent one of the nicest areas in southwestern Ontario, the riding of Lambton-Middlesex. It has a huge agriculture base.

I agree with the contents of his maiden speech. I stress that we all work together to maintain a strong support for agriculture and small business in Canada to ensure growth for Canada and Canadians. I congratulate the hon. member.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:35 a.m.


Paul Crête Bloc Kamouraska—Rivière-Du-Loup, QC

Madam Speaker, I am honoured to have this opportunity to reply to the speech from the throne. The constituents of Kamouraska-Rivière-du-Loup, the men and women living in the regional municipalities of Kamouraska, Rivière-du-Loup and Basques ridings as well as the municipality of Pohénégamook, gave me the mandate to express to the federal government the will of the population of Quebec which wants fundamental changes in the relationship between Quebecers and the rest of Canada.

Since 1980, I have chosen to live in Eastern Quebec, more specifically in La Pocatière. Everywhere I went, I noticed that the needs of rural Quebecers are not quite understood. Government members do not seem to recognize the urgency here, since no regional development strategy is mentioned in the throne speech.

On behalf of the neglected rural and urban populations, I would like to say how disappointed I am about this omission.

Given the insensitivity of the government to our specific development concerns, whether it is in Rivière-du-Loup, Amos, or Lotbinière, we have lost all hope of seeing the government respond quickly to the situation. Hence the need for Quebecers to get back all necessary political and financial powers to make sure measures are being taken right away.

Even if it is not included in the Constitution, regional economic development is a jurisdiction on which the federal government has impinged without taking into account the will of the Quebec government to take full responsibility in this area.

For over 30 years, Quebec regions have been used as laboratories for tests which only proved that the present federal system does not work.

At first, the federal government opted for economic centralization, as shown in the Higgins-Raynauld-Martin Report. This devastating approach was reinforced by the creation of the Department of Regional Industrial Expansion, whose decision-making process focused on sectoral concerns, instead of regional characteristics.

In 1987, even the Standing Committee on Regional Industrial Expansion of this House of Commons recognized the fact that the federal programs did not meet the needs of the people, because the criteria being used were not suited to the needs of the regions. Because of a lack of participation from the regions, the money was given to useless projects, instead of some local and worthwhile initiatives. Take for example the magnificent $7 million drill hall which was built in my riding. Fascinating, but if the people in the area had had a word in the matter, I can assure you they would have found other much more interesting projects to subsidize with that $7 million.

The federal government made some adjustments by developing a new strategy based on framework agreements. That does not work either, as shown by the unemployment rates. Regions can and must do more to supply domestic and foreign markets with raw materials. To create jobs, we must develop processing industries and make use of local resources. The government's role in putting GATT in place will also be judged by what happens here. Its defence of GATT was not very convincing, I must say. The government accentuates regional dependence.

The federal government might as well admit that its actions in the area of regional development are inappropriate. The economic base is crumbling, the social fabric is falling apart, the exodus from rural areas continues, with young people among the first to leave.

The number of municipalities whose population is shrinking has increased at an alarming rate in the past 25 years, so that today, their numbers exceed the number of communities where the population is growing. Nevertheless, the people in the regions are doing something about it. A first step was taken by the Union des producteurs agricoles du Québec and 25 groups that signed the déclaration des États généraux du monde rural at their meeting in 1991.

Perhaps I may recall some of the main highlights of this declaration: rights of the individual; the community's control over its future; promoting and respecting regional and local values; co-operation between local and regional partners; diversification of the regional economic base; protecting and regen-

erating resources; fine tuning lines of political authority; and promoting alternative measures for sustainable development. The Bloc agrees with these principles and supports this consensus.

Regional development means more than just building roads. Quebecers know that that is not enough. Progress depends on the active participation and creativity of local resources. The government should provide financial support as needed. In this respect, research and development are the way of the future for the regions. Remote locations are no longer an obstacle to attracting high-tech companies.

Haphazard action by the federal government has created bizarre situations, as in the case of its policy of closing rural post offices, which meant that communities were deprived of essential services, while at the same time community futures committees were being set up to provide local communities with the appropriate development tools. When we consider that 83 per cent of the employees in these post offices are women, an excuse for speeches on employment equity, this is a clear case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing.

The Federal Office of Regional Development fails to take the comprehensive view of local development. What it does is often more like window dressing. Boosting regional economies means knowing how to use local human resources. Forestry workers who lost their jobs to a machine should be able to go back with dignity and help develop that same forest for the benefit of future generations. When companies increase productivity, the proceeds should be used to create jobs.

Actually, the inefficiency of manpower training programs is most apparent in the regions, where it is harder to get a training program for a group of workers than to relocate them. I had this experience myself on an adjustment committee, when 20 employees from Bombardier had been laid off and it took at least two major political manoeuvres to get these people a training program for welding, although the Bombardier plant, well-known internationally, was only a few kilometres from the training location.

What is there in the Throne Speech that will make life easier for a young entrepreneur from Saint-Hubert or Rivière-du-Loup who wants to launch a new product? Who can help him? The Business Development Centre, the Community Futures Committee, the Youth Enterprise Centre, the Corporation de développement économique , the tourism corporation, the Federal Office of Regional Development, the Industrial Development Corporation, plus two members' offices. The development agencies mean well, but it is a real nightmare for our young entrepreneur to find his way through this administrative labyrinth. Often, after knocking in vain on all these doors, our young entrepreneur has to go back to dreaming about his future. Meanwhile, and this is even worse, agencies in the region compete with each other in a way that is unproductive.

Regional development must also be based on comprehensive projects like the high-speed train in the Quebec-Windsor corridor-that cannot be overemphasized. This project would create jobs in greater Montreal, at the Bombardier plant in La Pocatière and for our Canadian neighbours. This project would have a major impact. It would use the potential of our young people who are skilled in high-tech fields and would develop an expertise which could be exported throughout the world. It would also be a major contribution to the conversion of military industry.

Geographical isolation is trivial compared to isolation from the main decision-making centres. The future of regional development in Quebec depends on respecting Quebec's jurisdiction in that field and recognizing the regions' right to control their own development, as the Bélanger-Campeau Commission said.

Federal intervention in regional development is very costly. Overlapping jurisdictions require such an expenditure of energy that not enough is left to deal with the real problems. By creating intermediate structures, too much time is spent administering the programs in order to co-ordinate decision making among various agencies. Meanwhile, money does not go to the community; it stays in the bureaucratic system.

The share of income collected directly by government through taxes should diminish as local authorities obtain access to revenue sources from these same citizens. The infrastructure program is an eloquent example. What a fine effort the governments seem to be making without putting too much money into development!

But do you not think that ideally, the municipalities themselves should have the ability to collect taxes and raise the funds needed for their development, without asking themselves whether the federal Parliament in Ottawa must be involved in the decision about a garage or a roadway in the Rivière-du-Loup region?

I think it would be much better to decentralize the budgets and available funds significantly so that our local elected officials can decide on these matters.

In the present federal system, a way to do this would be to give Quebec the tax points for the federal investment in this area, over $200 million, and to recognize Quebec's exclusive jurisdiction in this field.

We are in a paradoxical situation, where the federal government which has the right to raise taxes never developed the proper tools to meet the regions' needs in support of their development.

We gather from the 1993 election campaign that people yearn for a way to the future, where only one government will decide

and will have all the power to tax and to eliminate duplication, overlap and inconsistencies among departments. People want to call on the values that already exist in their communities.

This way of the future is Quebec sovereignty, a unique opportunity for a massive transfer to the regions of the $28 billion in taxes which Quebecers pay to Ottawa. We will vote against the subamendment moved by the member for Calgary Southwest because it is out of the question to give the government a blank cheque for deciding on cuts without first setting up a committee to thoroughly study the proposed cuts.

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

11:45 a.m.


Ted McWhinney Liberal Vancouver Quadra, BC

Madam Speaker, may I first of all congratulate you on your appointment to this distinguished office and through you the Speaker who we elected several days ago.

It is a significant fact that in a changing Parliament and in a changing Canada we are in the process of changing the House constitution, the rules. It indicates the basic fact of common law from which the law of Parliament is passed, that it is not a frozen cake of doctrine that gelled once and for all in some bygone age, but a continuing process of creative adjustment of old rules to new social circumstances.

We have seen changes that were not expected. The House has elected a Speaker for the second time, but in this particular election there were extensive meetings between candidates and the political parties: the Bloc Quebecois, the Reform Party and as a special suggestion of the Prime Minister, with the Liberal Party. Perhaps no votes were changed, but I think there was a profound educational process.

We are all better informed of the options of choice for the future development of parliamentary rules and procedures available to us. In the process of give and take there is a cumulative advance in our thinking because parliamentary constitutional law, as I said before, is not fixed in time. It is not graven on stone tablets. It evolves and it must evolve.

The precedents we received in the 19th century must be balanced against precedents from other ages, the 17th and 18th centuries, for example. In some ways these are much more dynamic and creative in terms of the evolution of English parliamentary constitutionalism. They also affected the American constitution.

What comes out of this is that this House will continue to build on parliamentary procedures, will continue to create new rules incrementally on the old. One looks forward to the co-operation of opposition parties in building a new and strengthened role for backbenchers and for committees. It is good to have the full co-operation promised by the Prime Minister and the House leader not merely in the election campaign but since so that we represent law in the making.

That is a signal event for us because of course the speech from the throne has two main thesis in it. One is the concept of change that we live in a period of transition, in a sense a world revolution of our times, of which the collapse of the Soviet empire and the fall of the Berlin wall were merely symbolic indications. Large changes are occurring and they affect Canada as much as anybody else. Our institutions must respond to those changes.

The speech from the throne picked up the thesis advanced in the Livre rouge of the Liberal Party that change must come, that it is inherent in our society. It should not be resisted. One should guide and direct it constructively.

The second main theme in the speech from the throne is also the notion that one cannot isolate social problems. The social scientists speak of the polycentricity of problems and problem solving. It simply means that individual problems are not islands to themselves. One cannot separate social problems from economic problems nor can one today separate internal problems from larger problems of foreign policy.

We live in a global village and what happens in far-flung areas of the world impacts upon Canada and upon our development. It is in that perspective that I approach my intervention in this debate.

I represent the constituency of Vancouver Quadra which has had the honour of having as its members a Prime Minister, my predecessor John Turner, but also a very distinguished Conservative foreign minister, Howard Green who lived to a very ripe old age after his retirement from Parliament. He is remembered for reinforcing a principle developed first by Prime Minister Pearson and Paul Martin Senior, the notion that Canada's commitment in foreign policy includes a concern for people outside Canada and a concern for human rights. Howard Green, if you will remember, took the initiative as foreign minister within the Commonwealth to raise the issue of race relations with a member of the Commonwealth, South Africa, and to say that a policy of openness and open society is and should be a precondition to membership in the Commonwealth.

And so I continue in that tradition. I must say one of the striking things in my constituency is that it mirrors the changes in process occurring in Canada as a whole. We have suddenly become a global community by the very happy fact of immigration and the integration of our new communities into Canadian society.

My constituency encompasses Greek Canadians. It also has Polish Canadians. Some came as war veterans after World War II. Some came to escape the dying days of an inefficient, incompetent communist regime. The boat people came 10 or 15 years ago and now have their children at college. There is a success story for you because they came with nothing. Our Indo-Canadian community and the Sikh community have con-

tributed so much to our cultural richness. Our Chinese Canadian communities have come from mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong and are united in maintaining a new plural Canadian tradition.

This in some way signals the growth and change occurring in British Columbia which was once traditionally preoccupied with forestry and industries with natural resources. They are still there. They are at the basis of our richness and the new dynamic and I would say, forward looking policies of management, a part of their present development.

However, it may have escaped the notice of people in other parts of Canada that we lead in scientific development, particularly in the area of the relationship of science, scientific research, advanced technology and industrial application which the Japanese perfected but which we are doing now.

The TRIUMF/KAON project is a monument to the new dynamism in British Columbia education and science and research. It groups together the great physicists of Canada and the world. It has attached to it as ancillary projects, geneticists like the Nobel laureate, Michael Smith. It has built a massive export industry which converts a company like Ebco of Richmond that once was a minor tool manufacturer into a multimillion dollar export industry for Canada with new jobs and new wealth contributing to the national well being.

Therefore British Columbia represents at once this meeting of the new communities in a larger community of communities. By the way that term, sometimes attributed to Canadian political figures, is that of Martin Buber. He was speaking from his viewpoint as a central European scholar who later went to Israel and saw the need for communities to work together. The new pluralism means every community is enriched in the process.

There is no longer, if there ever was, a problem of languages in British Columbia. It is the objective of parents whose children have mastered the cours d'immersion in the French language to move over to a third language. I think that may be the Canadian dream reflecting the new Canada and reflecting the new orientation to which British Columbia has contributed so much. The centre of gravity in the world community is moving from Europe to the Pacific and the Pacific rim and we are there.

Therefore we will be speaking out in caucus and in Parliament on the necessary recognition of the new role of British Columbia. We sometimes feel that bureaucrats and maybe even political leaders in central or eastern Canada are insensitive to these dramatic changes in the balance of power in Canada.

The important thing to remember here is that we have a view of federalism which corresponds to the view I expressed of the common law. Federalism did not gel once and for all in 1867 in a series of static relationships between institutions or a glorifying of old processes simply because they were there.

We accept Mr. Justice Holmes' view that it is revolting to have no better justification for a rule than that it was laid down in the time of Henry II. Henry II has been dead for so many centuries. Therefore we believe in the continual updating of federal institutions.

Federalism, as Prime Minister Trudeau said, is pragmatism. It is a process of constant readjustment of old institutions and rules to meet new problems. And so we have faith in federalism and the fact that our distinctness as part of the larger Canadian society can be reflected and translated into institutional and other changes within the Canadian Constitution and by a process of evolutionary growth that does not necessarily require formal changes to the constitution. The dynamic of constitutional growth in an existing society is that it comes through incremental change and adjustment in response to contemporary problems.

In this period of change in which we all live I have spoken of the movement of the world community, the shift in the centre of gravity from Europe to the Pacific rim. It is a fact of life. It means there will have to be new emphasis on trade and co-operation with Pacific rim countries.

However it also reflects one of the great dilemmas of the world community in a period of transition. We sometimes have the coexistence of the old with the new. It is sometimes a painful coexistence, even a collision.

We expect that the 21st century will see the ideal of a viable world government. It is not with us now. Therefore, one of the realities is the commitment that Canadians have made in foreign policy from the golden period of St. Laurent, Pearson and Paul Martin, Sr. to the United Nations has to be balanced against the recognition of the regionalism that exists within the world community as a whole.

It is good that the GATT discussions led to the suggestion for a world trade organization, but this is not for the first time. It was one of the hopes of the founding fathers of the United Nations in 1946 that there would be a world trade organization. It was the failure, in some ways the unexpected failure, of this project that led to the not very satisfactory compromise of GATT. But like many not satisfactory compromises it performed a necessary function and deserves credit for those measures that have existed since 1946 to prevent an autarchic system of international trade.

I come back to the basic point that to put all one's faith in a world trade organization and in GATT is not a sufficient remedy for the economic problems of our time. I have no doubt, in

historical terms, that the government has been right to put its faith in NAFTA.

The regional organizations, the trends of history, the movement of the European Community through the ideal of the single act into, in many respects, a closed regional community compels us to look for external markets wherever we can find them. I compliment both the red book, the livre rouge, and the government for the commitment to NAFTA. To be sure, there were international problems to consider, a thicket of problems that perhaps could have been considered more fully in the last several years. However, they are not insuperable. Treaties once made are not graven in stone. There are processes under international law for changing them to new circumstances.

I had occasion as a private citizen in another capacity to examine the issue of freshwater export in bulk, whether it was to be covered by NAFTA or not. My conclusion was clearly it was not covered by NAFTA but I appreciate the concerns of those Canadian citizens who thought it was.

On this particular point it seems to me that the solution adopted by the Canadian government, the exchange of statements, is adequate in international law to achieve that point of making assurance doubly sure on the water issue. Further possibilities for change exist on a similar basis. If we worry about what the United States would say, I would simply say that the United States government more than anyone perfected these methods of change in treaties, creative change after the treaty has been signed, sealed and delivered.

We move to this situation of a coexistence of mondialist, one world tendencies through the new world trade organization, through the development of GATT and through our creative membership in new regional organizations like NAFTA.

We should all commend the initiative taken by the trade minister to put out feelers to Chile, to new countries for membership in NAFTA to expand our trade opportunities. However we should also look carefully at associate membership for our Pacific rim trading partners, or trading partners to be.

One of the great advantages of the new Canada, the new pluralistic Canada, is that we have an enormous natural resource in our citizens who have come here from other countries. They have the language and know the customs in terms of trade and commercial relationships and these things should be used to the fullest. I expect in the expansion of the trade initiatives this will be acted upon by the government to the fullest.

In the general area of foreign policy the problems of living in an era of transition are obvious enough as they are in other areas. We would have to recognize that western foreign policy as a whole, after the period of creative growth, post war with the Marshall plan and those brilliant imaginative conceptions of a new world order have been somewhat lacking in imagination and forward looking thinking in recent years.

It is noticeable that there were no strategic plans in place to take account of the collapse of the Soviet empire and even Europe. There was a real failure to anticipate that collapse, yet it had been amply warned by all of the specialists.

There was also a failure to anticipate in the absence of a plan for state succession the would-be renaissance of national conflicts, of ethnic conflict of the sort which existed in southeast Europe before 1914 and was reflected in the two Balkan wars and in World War I.

One of our problems for Canadian foreign policy is that the golden era when we did lead the free world in new ideas, the golden era of the 1950s and 1960s, the St. Laurent-Pearson-Martin era, cannot be replicated any more. We were there because the colonization had not yet occurred. However, we anticipated it and we led the way to its peaceful application and peaceful development.

Our economic position was stronger in relative terms in the world community than it is now. Of course we could say this even more for the United States which is also in a more imaginative period of thinking in foreign policy than in recent years.

Some of the problems with which a new government and new Parliament is beset reflect from a failure to recognize the contradictions and to act on them in timely fashion. That is one of the challenges for a new government and a new Parliament.

In relation to peacekeeping which Canada invented-it was Mr. Pearson's achievement and he was a Nobel laureate on account of that-we have to recognize today too many disparate tasks in too many disparate areas. In some senses in the defence forces there is too much preoccupation with military hardware and not enough attention to the new and highly political role that peacekeeping involves today. I think there was a second failure to recognize the distinction between peacekeeping which we, Mr. Pearson and Canada, devised and peacemaking which involves the overt use of armed force.

These are some of the issues that we face now: the tragedy of Somalia, the tragedy of Bosnia-Hercegovina. These are problems that could have been anticipated and not really met-

Speech From The ThroneGovernment Orders

12:10 p.m.

The Acting Speaker (Mrs. Maheu)

I am sorry, your time has expired.