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Wednesday, 1 August 1906
Page: 2160

Mr FISHER (Wide Bay) .- The honorable member for Wentworth is very ingenious, and is entitled to take whatever course he deems fit. I would point out, however, that, whilst his proposal is that the Governor-General shall have power to arrange with the Governments of other countries for an interchange of meteoro-

Mr Groom - The amendment would not prevent that being done.

Mr. FISHER.The point is that the more definitely we prescribe the duties of the Minister the more we limit his powers. In the amendment we have the words specifically used, " the Governments of other countries, or any of them." We ought not to limit the power to obtain information in that way, because big shipping companies, whose vessels are fitted with wireless telegraphy instruments, would, doubtless, be able to supply us with very valuable information. Information obtained from a certain distance beyond Australia is of value only for universal data, and it seems to me that in prescribing the powers of the Minister in the way proposed by the honorable member for Wentworth we should certainly bring about a limitation of them.

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