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Wednesday, 11 July 1906


Mr CHANTER (Riverina) The honorable member for Wentworth has taken it upon himself to advise the Government and their supporters. By this time honorable members must have arrived at a decided opinion as to the value of the amendment'. I for one refuse to be classed, as the last speaker, attempted to class those who fovour the policy of protection for Australia, as disloyal to the Empire. I yield to no one in my Tova It\ to Great Britain, not even to the honorable gentleman who has spent so much of his time there. But what is the object of the Bill? It is to prevent monopolies which are destructive of Australian trade, r.o matter whence they come.


Mr Wilson - We have got off the question of monopolies, and axe now dealing with the Question of dumping.


Mr CHANTER - I am quite aware that we have reached clause 12, and that

Ave a:e now discussing an amendment moved by the honorable member for North Sydney, perhaps for a very proper purpose, but possibly with the object of inducing persons outside to think that the members of the Opposition are the only loyalists in the Australian Parliament, that they will open their arms to Great Britain in every direction, and that the membersof the Government and their supportershave quite the reverse disposition.


Mr Cameron - The members of the Opposition are the only ones who show it practically, anyhow.


Mr CHANTER - The honorable member has not shown that or anything else, practically, so that he need not interject.


Mr Cameron - I have.


Mr CHANTER - The only time when the honorable member showed anything practical was when he sat on the rail for a week or two, and then voted with the Government.


Mr Cameron - And I saved them.


Mr CHANTER - Yes.


Mr Cameron - And I saved the honorable member a great deal of anxiety when he knew that he was safe for a time.


Mr CHANTER - I do not wish to be drawn aside by these interjections.


Mr Cameron - Then the honorable member should not provoke them.


Mr CHANTER - The honorable member spends so much of his time in the cold climate of Tasmania that he wants to get warmed up now and again. Whatever the object of the amendment may be, in my opinion it is an insult to Great Britain. The object of the Bill is to prevent the destruction of Australian industries, but in supporting the amendment the Opposition say, " We will not allow the Americans. French, or Germans to destroy Australian industries, but we will allow Englishmento come here and do so." I am a loyalist, and an Australian, but I shall not suffer Australian industries to be destroyed, no matter whence the attempt may emanate. That, to me, is a patriotic feeling.


Mr Cameron - Lip-loyalty.


Mr CHANTER - There is no liployalty about it. My whole life has been ashonorable as that of the honorable gentlemen opposite.


Mr Cameron - We are not talking of the honorable member's life.


Mr CHANTER - Then why should" the honorable member say that I am indulging in lip-loyalty? Neither my career m or my attitude in the House has ever given warrant to the honorable member or any one else to say that I have made here any statement which I did not really believe in and indorse by vote and voice. I need no defence in that regard. The honorable member for North Sydney and every supporter of the amendment has tried to throw upon the members of the Government and their supporters the odium of being opposed to preferential trade with Great Britain. That is an absolutely improper statement to make, because it is within their knowledge that when the question of who was in favour of preferential trade with Great Britain was put to the electors, it was the Right Honorable G. H.'Reid and his followers who absolutely refused to accept it. But now, with the object of introducing a side issue, they wish to pose as preferential traders with Great Britain. I repeat that this is a Bill for the prevention of the destruction of Australian industries, no matter from what country the -attempt may be made, and those who support the amendment are really pleading that Australian industries may be destroyed by monopolistic manufacturers of Great Britain, Canada, or any other part of the British Empire.


Mr Isaacs - No; only the United Kingdom.


Mr CHANTER - That is a limitation I did not expect. The fact remains that those supporting the amendment plead that we should allow some one to destroy Australian industries.


Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - No one has suggested that.


Mr Isaacs - It is not a question of loyalty to the Empire, but merely that persons in the United Kingdom should have this power.


Mr CHANTER - That is the gist of the amendment. The honorable member for Wentworth has said that there are no monopolies in Great Britain, and no persons engaged in industries there who will "be responsible for dumping destructive of Australian industries. If that be so, of what use is the amendment? If there are monopolies in the United Kingdom, it is just as necessary that we should protect our industries from their operations as that we should protect them from the operations of monopolies in other countries.


Mr Lee - They do not exist in England.


Mr CHANTER - If they do not exist in the United Kingdom, of what use is the amendment ? If they do exist, I hope that it will be considered patriotic on. the part of Australians to prevent the destruction of Australian industries, no matter from what country the attempt is made to destroy them. When the real question of loyalty to the Empire is before this House in a practical form, which will show which party is prepared to give expression to that loyalty in a practical and legitimate way, that is, by the establishment of preferential trade in the interests of the Empire, the votes in favour of such a proposal will be on this rather than on the opposite side.







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