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Thursday, 5 July 1906

Mr KELLY (Wentworth) .- Am I right in supposing, that under paragraph b the onus would be on the plaintiff to prove that the competition " would probably or does in fact result in a lower remuneration for labour."

Mr ISAACS (INDI, VICTORIA) - U - Undoubtedly.

Mr KELLY - Then he would be compelled to produce his books.

Mr Isaacs - The Crown would act in a prosecution.

Mr KELLY - Assume that the view of the harvester manufacturing question taken by honorable members on this side is correct, and that the local firms, although making large profits, are threatening to throw their men out of employment, in order to bring pressure to bear on the Government. In the event of the harvester manufacturers making a complaint, and of the defendant stating that they were making large sums of money, would it be incumbent upon the Crown to examine their books and ascertain if that statement were correct ?

Mr Isaacs - 'That would depend largely upon the way in which the case was conducted. I presume that the Crown would call experts to prove that the industry would have to be carried on at a lower remuneration for labour. The witnesses who testified to that effect would be crossexamined and, if necessary, called upon to produce documentary proof.

Mr KELLY - That would to some extent, meet the case. I suggest that the word " general " should be inserted before the words "lower remuneration for labour" because I presume that the provision is intended to apply to Australian industries generally, and not to the circumstances of any particular firm.

Mr Isaacs - It is not intended to favour individuals, but to have a general application.

Mr KELLY - Then, perhaps, the AttorneyGeneral would consent to make the intention clear in the way that I have indicated.

Mr Isaacs - I could not insert the word " general " in the way suggested, but I should be willing to insert at the end of the paragraph the words "in an Australian industry."

Mr KELLY - That would probably meet the case.

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