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Wednesday, 22 August 1906

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) . - I support this vote most cordially.

Mr Brown - Where is the anti-Socialist now ?

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - The trouble really is that I am anxious to take, the last vestige of the cry of " stinking fish " from the honorable member. I maintain that, if this money be thrown away, it will be thrown away in a very good cause indeed.

Mr Wilks - If the Government build the trawler in my electorate it will be all right.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I will support the honorable member 'in any proposal of that character. I am afraid that we are succumbing to the influences which have been operative here for some time, and really one may be forgiven if, in a temperature like this, one's political fibre begins to relax somewhat. But speaking seriously, it occurs to me that, of all the amounts which it is proposed to allocate in the distribution of the Treasurer's surplus, the vote of £8,000 to enable the deep sea fisheries of Australia to be thoroughly tested is most to be commended. It is worth that amount to learn the facts of the case, and if those facts are as I believe, the waters of Australia are as plentifully supplied with fish as are those of any other part of the world. That is my information, and upon the strength of such assurances I am prepared to support this item in order to place the matter beyond doubt. Should experience prove that we have not the teeming millions of fish which are to be found in the deep sea fisheries of Other countries, I say that we have thrown away £8,000 in many a worse speculation. I do not think that we could spend a portion of the Treasurer's surplus in any better way than that proposed, always provided that this trawler is to be built in New South Wales, and in the electorate of the honorable member for Dalley.

Mr Kelly - The honorable member had better make that remark satirical or it will be used against him.

Mr JOSEPH COOK (PARRAMATTA, NEW SOUTH WALES) - It is by no means satirical. I mean it absolutely. I think it is about time that Mort's Dock got a look in in connexion with the dispensation of favours by the Government. I trust that the proposed' venture will prove the success which is anticipated.

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