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Friday, 16 July 1920


Mr GROOM - Then are we to infer that the attitude of honorable members is this: - " We .are Socialists, and we will socialize everything, but we must tell the farmer that we will not socialize his property'." Is it by collective ownership that honorable members opposite propose to arrive at complete co-operation between producer and consumer ?


Mr Ryan - Would the Minister be good enough to say what words in the paragraph he has read indicate that we believe in taking the farm of the individual ?


Mr GROOM - That inference is clearly to be drawn from the proposal to bring about the collective ownership and democratic control of the collectively used agencies of production. Is not the nationalization of land one of the objectives of the Labour party?


Mr Gabb - It is not on our platform.


Mr GROOM - But is it not an objective of the party, and by the prohibition of freehold and by the taxation of land in some of the States is not the Labour party trying to make that objective effective ?

During the course of this debate there has been a good deal of discussion concerning the principle of deportation. I shall not refer to any individual case, but I ask honorable members to bear in mind that during the war there were in Australia certain enemy subjects, who owed allegiance not to this country, but to a foreign and enemy country.


Mr Riley - It has to be proved that they were enemy subjects.


Mr GROOM - That was easily proved in some cases, and was established by the Court in one particular case.


Mr Brennan - What case was that?


Mr GROOM - I do not intend to refer to it more precisely. Every man deported from Australia after the war, even though he was an alien subject owing allegiance to another country, was given the right and opportunity to make representations to a magistrate, and of stating his case fully, and completely before he was deported. In addition, there was a Central Board, presided over by a Judge, to which cases were referred; so that no man was sent from this country without the facts of his case being heard, if he so desired, or without his receiving the most humane consideration. One man, concerning whom a great deal of fuss was made had both of these opportunities afforded him, and even had his case twice dealt with by the High Court. A lot of dust is being thrown into the eyes of the Australian people, and honorable members are asking why all these cases are not subject to trial by jury. When nations are at war-

Honorable Members. - We are not at war now.


Mr GROOM - I am dealing with the cases of enemy subjects who were interned during the war. When honorable members opposite were in power the Government interned these men without giving them any trial.


Sir JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) (Minister for the Navy) - Hear, hear! The Labour party did it.


Mr GROOM - And that action was quite right. The security of the nation is the first aim and necessity in time of war, and since the cessation of hostilities no man has been, sent out of the country without being given the fullest opportunity to state his case. No other country in the world has treated enemy subjects more generously than Australia has done. Yet honorable members are trying to deceive the people into believing that the principle of imprisonment without trial is being wrongfully violated. That is only so much dust thrown in the eyes of the public. The honorable member for West Sydney (Mr. Ryan) tried to place upon the shoulders of this Government the responsibility for the disfranchisement of Germans. I do not blame the honorable member, who is new to the Federal sphere, for not knowing more about this subject, but other honorable members who are associated with him know that in 1916 a Labour Government was in power here, controlled entirely by the Labour party. Honorable members now among the Nationalists were then sitting in Opposition. What I wish to point out is that the first measure to disfranchise naturalized Germans in Australia, and the first Statute to interfere with Australian-born persons of German parentage, was passed-


Mr Riley - By the Prime Minister (Mr. Hughes).


Mr GROOM - And the honorable member was following him at the time.


Mr Riley - I objected to that legislation.


Mr GROOM - Honorable members opposite sat behind that Labour Government and supported that legislation, but now are turning against legislation first introduced by a Labour Government.


Mr Gabb - That is untrue.







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