House of Commons photo

Crucial Fact

  • Her favourite word was grandparents.

Last in Parliament April 1997, as Reform MP for Mission—Coquitlam (B.C.)

Won her last election, in 1993, with 37% of the vote.

Statements in the House

Drunk Driving December 12th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, I rise to applaud the sincere and tireless efforts of the members of Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Especially at Christmas, MADD reminds us with a red ribbon campaign of the tragic consequences of drinking and driving.

I commend MADD for effectively changing the attitudes of the public toward what used to be an acceptable social occurrence, getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after drinking.

However, the social pressure will not be enough to curb the high percentage of repeat offenders whose problems are more than bad judgment.

As a society we also have a responsibility to eradicate the ravages of drunk driving by addressing the cause, not only the effect.

Statistics show that up to 70 per cent of the drivers who cause death and injury through impaired driving do have alcohol problems.

Therefore I say it is time to enforce rehabilitation, even involuntarily, to prevent future tragic deaths. We must, as well, pass legislation like Motion No. 78 which will deal with this serious offence effectively.

Today I am again wearing my pin in honour of Cindy Verhulst, a young woman from Mission in my riding whose life was tragically cut short by a drunk driver.

Canadian Food Inspection Agency Act December 12th, 1996

Madam Speaker, I am pleased to have the opportunity today to rise and address the concerns that I have regarding Bill C-60. I am interested in what the members of the Bloc had to say. I share their concern that the power to investigate and the power to know exactly what is going on is of utmost urgency.

I understand that the stated purpose of this act is to establish the Canadian food inspection agency in order to consolidate and enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of federal inspection services related to food, animal and plant health and to increase collaboration with provincial governments in this area.

I am concerned, the same as the Bloc is, that this power deals with food inspection, including risk management. It is very important that we look at risk management and the power again to look and investigate. I would be very interested in knowing exactly what direction we are taking when we speak of enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of federal inspection services.

Since they relate to food, animal and plant health, are we talking about food, animal and plant health as we know and recognize it now in its natural part in our society or are we talking about food, animal and plant health that has DNA changes to it? This is not very clear.

If this new act sets out the new agency's framework in terms of responsibilities, accountability and organization, exactly who is the new agency working for? Who is it responsible to? Who is it to be accountable to? I am sure we would all hope it is the people of Canada.

Because of the fast moving changes already occurring in our food chain with plants and animals, should there not be a control factor somewhere in the agency's framework?

When this new Canadian food agency begins operation in 1997, it will become one of Ottawa's largest bureaucratic entities, with 4,500 employees and a budget of $300 million.

Federal officials contend that ending interdepartmental overlap and duplication in such areas as enforcement, risk management,

laboratory services, information systems and communications will save taxpayers $44 million annually starting 1998-99.

Of course we have nothing yet to substantiate these claims but certainly duplication is a problem and anything we can do to cut that down is of benefit to all of us. I am sure most of us are aware of the massive costs at this time to the taxpayer when federal and provincial governments duplicate their services, not to mention the lack of efficiency and effectiveness as a result of this duplicity.

I recently read an article in Reader's Digest written by Premier McKenna of New Brunswick, a Liberal premier, who speaks of the terrible costs in duplication of government services. He speaks of the cost as high as $5 billion a year.

The Reform Party supports downsizing and consolidating the operations of the federal government, but I fear this act will accomplish little except to shuffle names and titles. This act will also continue to decentralize authority for food inspection in the hands of the federal government.

The Reform Party believes the government should acknowledge that since the provinces already provide many of these same inspection services, the emphasis should be on decentralization and encouraging common inspection standards. Along with what the Bloc said, the provinces need to have strong impact on this.

I want to backtrack a bit to the part that I spoke of in relation to federal officials who are responsible for enforcement risk management, laboratory services and information systems and communications because that is very easy and it can be said very quickly but there is a lot in those few words.

I believe we are talking here about looking after our food chain, and certainly that is what the inspection agency's job should be. On whose behalf, again, are all these rules and regulations set up? If it is not for the protection of Canadian citizens, young and old alike, who is it for?

Where is the information and communication with our citizens, the Canadian taxpayer? Who is minding the shop, ladies and gentlemen, and on whose behalf? Two years ago I had to alert citizens in my constituency all about the possibility of rBST injections into dairy cows. They were not notified. There was nothing sent out. There was no communication and no information given. This is very terrifying.

In laboratory services, we have many fine research scientists who, I realize, are very excited by all this new knowledge and the future possibilities. As these new and exciting ideas pour forward, who is asking Canadians if they want these changes? What about enforcement and risk management? What laws are being enforced and where is the risk management control?

I do not believe I am the only member of Parliament who receives weekly correspondence from my constituents who are alarmed by the changes taking place in their food chain, alarmed at the new genetically engineered food. Where is this mentioned at all in the new food inspections bill? Where is the caution?

I now receive books, letters and all sorts of correspondence from all over British Columbia asking me to look at the changes and to consider the apparent lack of caution, as those who would benefit in a monetary manner push ruthlessly ahead to force their will on Canadians.

I recently watched "Jurassic Park". I am not a movie goer, but I happened to catch it on TV last week. I did not find it scary in the physical sense but I found it alarming in the research and academic sense. I am not the first person to say this, but the message of the film to me was not can we do it but should we do it.

There are those who would argue that we are overpopulated and that the world at present cannot feed all of its people and that justifies scientists' changing our natural world as we know it. I agree that overpopulation is serious, but surely the answer is not to move full steam ahead in chaos, for indeed none of us knows where this will lead us.

Unfortunately, when we talk of global food production we have to admit there are serious problems. The human population is growing and we are losing 24 billion tonnes of topsoil a year.

Yes, third world countries need food and I fear all this new biotechnology hype is not helping the third world. Rather, those investing are venture capitalists and they need to find investors. How can we expect a starving third world country to come up with the money needed to invest?

What are we doing in the food inspection bill to take a look at what is around the corner? Surely what we do in legislation will reflect what is to come. We should not have to backtrack all the time.

Canada and I imagine the United States as well have a lot of food that is wasted every year. I have been to dumps in the Okanagan where beautiful ripe peaches, ripe tomatoes and ripe vegetables of all types have been thrown out. Why did we not dehydrate them or reprocess them? Surely the food inspection agency could come to grips with some kind of process so that food would not be wasted.

We send money to these third world countries that we do not have. That increases our tax burden. Yet we have food which we do not send. For countries to waste food when there are starving people in the world is not acceptable. To suggest that we must protect our food market so as not to flood the market and cause

lower prices is not an argument. Surely we have enough intelligence nowadays to be able to deal with both major issues.

We now have concerns that there are a number of products which have been changed. Canola is herbicide intolerant. I am not sure whether that means more or less herbicide is needed. We have tomatoes with fish genes in them to make them more tolerant. There are flavour saver tomatoes. I wonder if anyone has ever gone to a plant that has been ripened by the sun and tasted a ripe tomato. I do not think anything can top that. There are pigs with human genes in them. Even our fish are being engineered to grow faster.

What are the negative side effects? In B.C. we have good research scientists. One of them spoke on the weekend and told us that one of the side effects is that this particular engineered fish is a more aggressive feeder. Therefore it is not unlikely that if released into a natural setting it could over eat and cause the demise of our natural salmon. That is not unrealistic to suggest.

We are not using any controls. Food inspection has to deal with all aspects of food.

Every technology, no matter how beneficial, has unexpected costs. Today more than ever before we need researchers and scientists with ethical and moral values. Our research scientists should be free to explore where their curiosity and expertise take them in a controlled environment. However, if they have to be constantly aware of the economic payoff, then our scientists are not free to do their research and pressure is put on them to produce new ideas for those who want to exploit our world, as we know it, which results in the release of these genetically engineered food products on unsuspecting consumers. They are not being labelled. We do not really know what we are purchasing any more.

I have presented two private member's bills which deal with labelling. I hope those bills will be dealt with seriously.

I want to mention that there are occupational hazards related to biotechnology, which include diseases such as cancer, toxicity and product allergies. The main hazards are allergies from recombinant products, diseases, including cancer, and the production of novel disease organisms.

What is the concern? The concern is that many of these significant hazards are being ignored by the scientists who are doing research and those reporting on the research that these novel allergies in food products will impact on workers. In fact the escape of these genes on the coats of laboratory workers is occurring each day. Some of them are being taken outside the lab and this matter is not being dealt with.

I will conclude by saying we should look at all the research we have. Let us be very cautious that we do not just choose research that fits our particular purpose at the time and that we worry about all consumers.

Petitions December 12th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, the third petition is on behalf of residents from all over British Columbia as well as some residents in my riding.

The petitioners state that the gay and lesbian people want their families to be self-supporting, free of government interference and to be valued for being active tax paying members of Canada. Therefore, they request Parliament to amend the current definition of spouse to include same sex couples so all Canadian families can be treated equally.

Petitions December 12th, 1996

The second petition is from constituents around British Columbia who are bringing to the attention of the government the substandard national highway system.

The petitioners pray that the government would join with the provincial governments to make the upgrading of the national highway system possible.

Petitions December 12th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, I have three petitions to present this morning.

The first petition, along with many others in the House this morning, is an appeal to governments to not tax reading and to remove the GST on books.

I present these petitions on behalf of myself and of the member for Lethbridge.

Petitions December 11th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, pursuant to Standing Order 36, I have the honour to present petitions on behalf of two of my colleagues from Capilano-Howe Sound and from Fraser Valley West.

The petitioners ask the government to eliminate sales tax on reading materials. Further, they ask that as the provinces and Ottawa consider harmonizing the sales tax, reading materials must be zero rated under the provincial sales taxes as well as the GST. Education and literacy are critical.

Excise Tax Act December 10th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, for the sake of the member opposite, I will say mislead instead. The newspapers were very clear and they have already stated it.

Given this evidence, we do have an enormous burden of federal debt, now $600 billion, which the government has decided to stop mentioning. The Liberals' deficit reduction plans are based on continued strong economic growth but where will that growth come from? Retail sales remain down. Bankruptcies are up 23 per cent. Consumers are not spending. Financial experts warn of the danger of overextended credit cards. We are not looking at a good picture in the future.

Integrity. The HST is not what Canadians were promised by the Liberals in the last election when they went door to door looking for votes. We should have them honour their words. I would like to point out on integrity that when the heritage minister gave up her seat to seek re-election in the byelection she once again mentioned in her propaganda material in her campaign that she gave up her pension which we know was temporary, again misleading the people.

I would like to wrap up. Unfortunately, we did not get the postponement and I am sorry that that did not occur. I sincerely hope and implore this government to rethink the GST and HST.

Excise Tax Act December 10th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, this is the first time I have been in the House since your appointment. I would like to congratulate you. I wonder if I may say that there but for the grace of God go I.

I feel I must speak in today's debate on this legislation to harmonize and streamline the GST because this government does not support the people of Canada. This government does not keep its promises to the people of Canada. This government is cheating the people of Canada by making promises not once but over and over again and then breaking those promises.

Election promises made by the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the finance minister and scores of Liberal cabinet and caucus members to eliminate, not harmonize, the GST have not been kept. For example, the Deputy Prime Minister on October 19, 1993, as we are all familiar with, said: "Food is not subject to GST because it is a necessity. So are books. They are needed for young minds to grow".

The past Liberal whip, who is now the Minister of International Co-operation, said: "GST on reading material is bad policy and undemocratic. It creates more unemployment". Both these members were speaking against the GST.

The defence minister, who was the finance critic in 1990, said: "The Liberal Party would scrap the GST". He pledged in a nationally televised debate with finance minister Michael Wilson: "The goods and services tax is a regressive tax. It has to be scrapped. We will scrap it". That was in 1990.

The solicitor general said: "Not only do the Liberals oppose the GST now, but opposition will continue even if the bill is passed. We are not interested in tinkering with the GST. We don't want it at all".

The industry minister said: "Our credibility will be in shreds if we do not come up with a thoughtful alternative to tax reform that stands up to scrutiny".

The Prime Minister said: "The Liberals will scrap the goods and services tax if they win the next general election. I am opposed to the GST. I have always been opposed to it. I will be opposed to it always". This was in 1990.

Those were the statements made and we know where we are now. None of them has been kept.

Atlantic premiers in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland were bribed into signing the bill with $1 billion of borrowed taxpayer money. The finance minister is crowing like a rooster saying "aren't I great, look what I have accomplished". Is this not a bribe? Is this not a one time payment?

Sales tax will go up for the money lost when the $1 billion runs out because the $1 billion is paid over three or four years. Atlantic Canadians are going to have to make up for it when the money is gone. The GST may remain the same at 7 per cent but there is nothing to prevent the province from hiking up the sales tax to make up for the lost revenues. I believe at that time it is going to be need that determines the amount.

Instead of trying to help the hard hit Atlantic provinces whose demise of the cod fishery and low economy have made it difficult enough for them, the premiers of these three provinces have fallen into bed with the senior Liberal government and are hitting their people with a 15 per cent GST. We all know that HST is just another name for GST. The new tax is even worse because now Atlantic Canadians will be paying tax on everything, books, auto repairs, funeral services, haircuts, electricity, gasoline and home heating fuel-literally everything. The finance minister has tried to claim victory and a pat on the back for this?

Let us take a look at literacy. On October 23, 1996 the finance minister gave a news conference in which he stated that the Commons would implement a 100 per cent GST rebate on all books purchased by public libraries, schools, universities, et cetera. In the first case, those students, those people, members of our society who are furthering their education, not always school children, are going to need textbooks that they cannot get at libraries. They are going to have to buy textbooks they cannot get at libraries. This is literacy and this is a definite detriment to them.

I noticed that on the notice of ways and means sheet under the explanation of this new program it says under "the printed book" what is not included. In (f) it says "a book designed primarily for writing on". I imagine a scribbler might fall into that category and students need scribblers in day schools. (g) says "a colouring book or a book designed primarily for drawing on". What about art books?

On page 4 of the explanatory notes it says "also excluded are books designed primarily for writing on or drawing on or affixing thereon items, etc., clippings and pictures". Students use these all the time in their everyday work.

In reality we are not helping these particular students as far as literacy is concerned. We are hitting them in the school room as well.

What about books in the home, what about home libraries? How many people like to keep books in their homes that they can read? They do not want to always have to go to the library and return them every week. There are a lot of good books people like to keep just because they enjoy reading. There again these people are going to be penalized.

I have often said in this House that literacy begins at birth. That means we all should have in our home a good stock of books that are going to help us increase our education and help our children to develop a love of reading.

Workshops, scribblers, mothers going back to school to continue in their education, what if they need a science text that they have to buy for $100? There is $15 extra on that. What if they are going into medicine or anybody going to continue their schooling? This HST or GST is not helping literacy. It is making it difficult for Canadians to improve their literacy.

What about businesses and the retail stores? The change over is going to cost a fortune for them to adjust to. We are hitting small business right where it hurts. This is another major tax grab.

The three major retailers in Atlantic Canada have stated that their net annual retail deficit will total $27 million once the harmonization is implemented. The Retail Council of Canada has said that by forcing stores to bury the new tax in prices the harmonized tax regime will cost retailers at least $100 million a year more.

Most Canadians, I believe, do not want to see the tax buried. A lot of people would prefer to know what they are going to pay in tax before they go to the cash register. Tax included pricing that hits retailers hits them in these four areas: duplication of information systems and rewriting of software, repricing of prepriced goods, books, greeting cards and so on, duplication of advertising costs, flyers, catalogues, and warehousing and distribution costs. It is really going to hit our small business retail stores.

What about consumers? For Atlantic Canadians it is going to hit them with a double whammy. They will pay more for funeral services, children's clothing, books, auto repairs, all the things I previously said. The Investment Property Owners Association is concerned about renters. There are going to be higher operating costs for the landlords, so who is going to feel those higher operating costs? The renter. It will be passed on to them. Because renters usually have less income than homeowners the tax increase is really going to hurt those who can least afford it.

How does the rest of Canada feel? How do Canadian consumers feel all across this country? They are footing the bill. I do not imagine they are too happy about it.

On integrity this government, I feel, ranks very low on integrity. Recently I had an opportunity to write an article in my home newspaper. I wrote about integrity. I wrote about the end justifying the means. As a matter of fact, I spoke first about our provincial government. The reason is I had to explain to some of my constituents that we have to look more closely at integrity. "Our provincial government seems to believe the end justifies the means", I wrote, "but I say if the means involves deliberate lies about the budget to mislead the people during an election campaign, if it involves misappropriation of money from charity bingos, if it involves mismanagement of a huge crown corporation like B.C. Hydro, and ministers not reporting their departments' true financial condition just prior to an election, then the end cannot justify the means. British Columbians should be shouting for recall. If we do nothing about the lack of integrity in our provincial government, then we deserve the results".

What about integrity on the federal level? "On the federal level the Prime Minister's office recently sent a memo to Liberal Party officers across this country instructing party officials and media representatives to lie about the Reform Party. Here is another case of the end justifying the means but the media seem to have decided they will just ignore this one. Given this evidence of astonishing dishonesty in the Prime Minister's office, what if the federal Liberals' balanced budget projections are no more honest than the provincial NDP's?"

Food And Drugs Act December 9th, 1996

Mr. Speaker, it has turned into a rather lively session this morning.

Before we go any further, I want to say that the member opposite completely misrepresented the hon. member for Surrey North. I am really sorry when that happens in the House. If we do not have honesty between us, we have nothing. We have to treat each other with decency and respect. The hon. member for Surrey North actually supported the bill with caution. I am sure that every one of us has enough good sense to say that when we hear it. It upsets me. It has bothered me since I have come to this House.

Bill C-309 which the hon. member for Burlington put forward, if implemented would require restaurant owners to ensure that reliable information regarding the ingredients in menu items was readily available to food allergy sufferers. In essence that is needed. I do not think any of us could argue with that. We need to make informed decisions. That is what it comes down to.

The bill does not seek mandatory labelling. I know a bit about that because I have put forward a bill which does seek mandatory labelling, not in this case but in others. The concern here is one of awareness. The consumer must be aware of the contents of food, especially if they have a health problem. I would agree with the hon. member for Surrey North that those knowing they have an allergy or a health problem must also be held responsible. When I say that I am referring to something which happened.

It had nothing to do with food allergies, but had to do with McDonald's being sued because someone spilled hot coffee on them. The person who ordered the coffee spilled it. The legal claim awarded was absolutely ridiculous. It appears that none of us is responsible any more when we order a cup of coffee. If it is too hot, we can blame the restaurant. This is what I am concerned about. This is what might appear to be wrong.

The hon. member for Burlington said that restaurant owners and their staff will take the responsibility for the food they serve. Indeed, I would hope they would be willing to do so. However, the legal ramifications of that statement are what I am concerned about in light of what happened with the hot coffee which was spilled at McDonald's. That was absolutely ridiculous. Restaurants across the country are now afraid to serve hot coffee. That is a word of caution.

The responsibility has to lie with the person who has the allergy, the one who suffers. I agree with the hon. member for Surrey North. If those people could be handed a binder or something, as suggested by the hon. member for Burlington, it would be all written down. That would stop the legal responsibility and the onus would then be on the person who suffers with the allergy. That change might help. I am not sure how the hon. member for Burlington feels about that.

I agree with the hon. member for Burlington that ground nuts, peanut oil, ground almonds and ground hazelnuts are used in all of these things. Let us face it, they are flavourful, they are tasty and most of us enjoy the products which contain them. That being the case, I would like to express my other thoughts.

I do not think it is a surprise to anyone here that I am very concerned about where we are heading today with our food chain. I am not the only one who has grave concerns. On the weekend I watched three different television programs which dealt with it.

The member for Burlington spoke about informed decisions. That is what I am concerned about. I have two bills before the House. One concerns labelling any product that contains the hormone rbGH or rBST. That means all food products. If Canada starts to use injections of rBST, we will find that our butter, cheese, yogurt and our milk will also contain it. That is one of my major concerns. The other one is that we label any food product which is tampered with genetically. If there is biotechnology involved then it should say so on the label. It does not have to say exactly what it is. That is not necessary. But it must let the consumer know. Why?

Today we have the flavour saver tomato which apparently has a longer shelf life. By tampering with it, we no longer have a tomato as we know it and we do not know what the results of this may be over a long period.

Salmon in B.C. are also being engineered genetically, interestingly enough with fish genes. A scientist who spoke on the weekend said that some of the side effects are that those fish are aggressive feeders. If they are aggressive feeders and are released into the wild, it is not unlikely that we would see the demise of our natural salmon because they are not aggressive feeders.

We are looking at things in canola and soybeans. Vegetarians across the country are very concerned about the soybean which is being tampered with.

When do we as parliamentarians become responsible to our constituents? When do we make ourselves aware of all these changes and do something about it? This is not a light subject. Let me say to every member in the House that this is a very serious subject.

I recently watched "Jurassic Park". I am not a movie goer, but I picked it up on TV this past weekend. It was not very scary to me, but what alarmed me was the suggestion of change in science. The question I am sure everyone got out of that movie was not can we do it, but should we do it? I am suggesting to the House that those of us who feel that the people who are concerned about these things are way to the left had better rethink where they stand. We had better be responsible for these changes, because if as elected members of this legislature we are not responsible, who is? If it is not up to us to let our constituents know when things are happening, who is it up to?

When I came to the House I did not know anything about rBST. I looked into it. People on both sides of the House told me not to worry, that there was nothing to it. Fortunately, I did not stop there. I visited universities. I visited with Professor Joseph Cummins. I took the time to find out about something I did not know about. As a result I found that rBST may be very harmful, and I say it may be.

In the United States the FDA has already approved it. Although a group of Wisconsin farmers is fighting very hard to keep their milk products labelled "no rBST". They are in the courts with this right now. And we have lifted the moratorium in Canada, but is our health body going to say at some time that it is okay to inject our cows?

I read something from Joseph Cummins this morning. He says that such concerns are not as grave as those related to new findings showing that rbGH treatment stimulates the cow to produce insulin like growth hormone, the IGF-1 factor, which stimulates the growth of cells. He says that contrary to official claims, IGF-1 in milk is not destroyed in the human digestive system. Excessive IGF-1 causes a condition called gigantism accompanied by tumours of the colon. Tumours of the colon. Do we treat that lightly? The hormone also prevents programmed cell dealt leading to tumour growth. Insulin resistance leading to diabetes may follow excess IGF-1 exposure.

Ralph Kazer has suggested that IGF-1 exposure at high levels during fetal life and during puberty may imprint the female with abnormal IGF-1 sensitivity. That activity is believed to play a significant role in the development of breast cancer. We all know the number of people who are dying of breast cancer every year in our country. It is suggested that the IGF-1 causes too much cell division at critical times during breast development.

The bill put forward by the hon. member for Burlington is important in the fact that she is telling us of one very serious factor occurring right now in our society. I am suggesting that we cannot look at it in isolation because we are being hit every day with a group of them.

What about safety and health issues in biotechnology? This issue was put forward from Westech Microbes, which was charged with the occupational health and safety in biotechnology.

I wonder if this bill, put forward by the hon. member for Burlington, could be referred to the health committee for further study. There are so many ramifications. As members of a legislature, each one of us must make sure they are dealt with seriously. I thank the Speaker for the time and I thank the member for the bill.

Supply November 21st, 1996

Madam Speaker, I thank the member for his question.

I really wish that members of this House, particularly Liberals, would stop the insulting remarks. I find it degrading for parliamentarians. Having been a teacher for 30 years, I abhor this kind of speech in the House of Commons. I do not wish to hear it again.

I am very glad that this member was truly touched by what I had to say.

With respect to the different kind of world, I suggest that the member should take a moment to think. The Reform members, apart from one, have all been from the private sector, from the public sector, but not members of Parliament. Because we have not been members of Parliament in the past we have been in touch with real Canadians. We have worked with real Canadians. We have been teachers. We have been doctors. We have worked in the resource industries. We have been there. As citizens of Canada we have been more than aware of the issues that are out there.

The hon. member mentioned some gibberish about Ozzie and Harriet. I agree that would be a wonderful situation. I am sure the member agrees that it would be wonderful. Unfortunately, with the high rate of divorce and the difficult unemployment levels which the government has helped to create by not lowering taxes, that situation no longer exists. Reform is the first to acknowledge that. That is why Reform would introduce child care tax deductions in the amount of $5,000 for each preschool child and $3,000 for each child between the ages of 7 and 12.

I wonder if the member knows that over 80 per cent of Canadian families are comprised of a husband, a wife and children.

I believe that those who are not connected with reality are the Liberals. Surely common sense dictates that if the Liberals would lower taxes, and not have 46 per cent of the income of Canadians going to the tax structure, and leave more in their pockets so they could employ more people in their businesses it would encourage a more positive outlook. Perhaps the Liberals should look at the fact that retail sales are down. They were up at the beginning of 1995 by about 7 per cent. They have gone down all the way through 1995 and 1996. People are cautious and worried, they are not spending.

By my last accounting bankruptcies are over 52,000, up 23 per cent. This suggests a government that is unaware of what going on out there. I think the member who asked me to answer a question spoke a lot of nonsense.

I recently read an article in the September Reader's Digest and even Mr. McKenna, a Liberal premier, said that duplication in provincial and federal programs is costing us $5 billion a year.