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Tuesday, 6 August 1946

Mr ARCHIE CAMERON (Barker) . - I would not have risen but foi the intrusion in the debate of our noble friend from Dalley (Mr. Rosevear) who apparently employed the methods he employs in other situations in this chamber, in respect of which we might apply the saying that justice may be blind but it has a good look over the top of the bandage across the. left eye. The honorable member castigated the honorable member for Warringah (Mr. Spender) for suggesting the establishment of a board of appeal. The honorable member for Warringah and I are unlike in that he is a lawyer and I am not, though I have heard it said not infrequently that I am something of a bush lawyer.

Mr James - -The honorable member for Warringah is a cold-blooded lawyer.

Mr ARCHIE CAMERON - He gave a very hot-blooded exhibition to-night. The honorable member for Dalley said that such a board of appeal would be a purely visionary body wi th visionary powers. I find on analysis, however, that the very words which the honorable member for Warringah is attempting to incorporate in the amendment occur in paragraph Te of sub-clause 3, which provides that the board shall have power to suspend or exclude from employment in the coal industry, subject to appeal as prescribed, any person employed in the industry who acts in a manner prejudicial to its effective working. I would like to know from the honorable member for Dalley, or from any Minister who may happen to be present - the only one I see at the moment is the Minister for Repatriation (Mr. Frost), who is apparently widening his knowledge of the geography of Moscow so that he may know his way about there in the near future - whether the board of appeal as prescribed for employees who lose their jobs is in the nature of a purely visionary body with visionary powers. The point has been well taken by the honorable member for New England (Mr. Abbott) that the function of the law should he to administer even-handed justice to all. We should not allow a state of affairs to develop in which injustice may be done either to persons or .corporations. As the honorable member for Warringah pointed out, corporations, are only aggregations of individuals and should be as justly dealt with as, their individual members. Having delivered his bolt the honorable member for Dalley has himself bolted. He reminds me of the hit-and-run motorist who does not wait to see whether the damage to his victim is greater than that sustained by his own car; He has endeavoured to put into the mouth of the honorable member for Warringah words which, he did not use. I listened carefully to the speech of the honorable member for Warringah and I cannot recall having heard any reference to widows - I would be delighted if Hansard could produce one to-morrow morning. In his minor capacity as a mere member of this chamber, the honorable member for Dalley has been guilty of a misstatement which he would view very seriously if he were occupying his more exalted position as Speaker of the House. When that misstatement was pointed out to him he did not have . the decency to admit his error. Obviously he ha3 endeavoured to attribute certain words to the honorable member for Warringah without first taking the precaution of checking the accuracy of his recollection of them. He may, in due course, have something more to add to this debate. Perhaps .he will repeat his performance and, like' the hitandrun motorist, again deliver his blow and run away.

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