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Thursday, 1 September 1921

The CHAIRMAN (Senator Bakhap - Order! There are certain rules of debate that must be observed. When an honorable senator is on his feet it is not right that there should be a continuous fire of interjection.

Senator DE LARGIE - All that Senator Henderson has said in connexion with this matter is absolutely true, and cannot be controverted by any of the wild statements made by Senator Wilson or Senator Guthrie.

Senator Wilson - On a point of order, Mr. Chairman, I object to Senator de Largie suggesting that I have been guilty of making wild statements.

Senator GUTHRIE (VICTORIA) - I also object to the statement.

Senator DE LARGIE - I withdraw the word if it offends the honorable senators; but I can assure Senator Wilson that he does not know the practice in the coal trade. The explosives are paid for by the miner, out of his wages. The transaction often does not go through the office at all, the coal miner paying his grocer or his storekeeper for this commodity. This practice is not confined to the coal trade either. What about the working gold miner, and the parties of tributors, in Western Australia? All these men pay for their explosives. Every statement made by Senator Henderson in regard to the danger of using inflammable explosives is absolutely correct.

Senator Wilson - I have not disputed Senator Henderson's opinion. I merely quoted an authority against him.

Senator DE LARGIE - But the honorable senator appeared to get angry because of statements made by a man who has had lifelong experience in mining. I would pay a great deal of respect to Senator Wilson's view of the business with which he is familiar, and I would likewise pay particular attention to Senator Guthrie's opinion on the woollen industry. For the same reason, Senator Henderson is entitled to speak with authority on the coal-mining business. His opinion is not the result of any " cock and bull " story told by some one else, but the outcome of long experience.

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