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Friday, 17 August 1906

Mr McLEAN (Gippsland) .- I should not have said a word, but for the lecture with which the Minister of Trade and Customs has favoured us, and his statement that it was like the impudence of members of the Opposition to criticise his action. What were the facts? The Minister made a pilgrimage to Adelaide at the end of last week, and stayed there over the Sunday. He came back and told us that he was saturated with information about the spirit duties, that, in fact, he had obtained more information on the Sunday than the Tariff Commission had been able to collect in fifteen months.

Sir William Lyne - I think that it was better information.

Mr McLEAN - He told us further that he would place this information before us, and invited us to go on discussing the matter - to kill time - until he thought proper to return. The hurried manner in which he scuttled away for the train on Tues- day, reminded me of the words of the old nigger song : -

He seen a smoke way up de ribber Where de " Linkin " gim boats lay, He took his hat an let very sudden, And I 'specks he's run away.

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