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Thursday, 20 September 1928


Mr BRENNAN - That is exactly what I realize. The reception of visitors at Australia House would then proceed on party lines. I should like to have had a more elaborate address from the honorable member as to what constitute these varying degrees of importance from his point of view. I am not yet quite satisfied that Australia House is performing any useful function at all, certainly none commensurate with the expense incurred by it and its outward trappings; but I think that its usefulness would be manifested by at least affording information to citizens from the country that meets the expenditure upon it. I listened to the honorable member for Kalgoorlie (Mr. A. Green) with interest and edification, and thank him for the distinctly Australian sentiment which he imported into his address as a counterblast to the parochial and class view taken by the honorable member for Warringah. There should be on the staff of Australia House at least a sufficient number of persons to enable them to be courteous and informative to citizens of this " no mean country."


Mr Parkhill - The High Commissioner should not be asked to see every visitorperson ally.


Mr BRENNAN - I can imagine what Sir Granville Ryrie would say if he werehe required to interview personally a greater number of ' persons than he thought should see in the circumstances. We had experience of him in this Parliament long before we made the acquaintance of the representative of the drawing room class who now holds the Warringah seat. At all events I think that Sir Granville is well able to look after himself. I do not go so far as to say that he ever had outstanding qualifications for his present position. In my opinion his appointment was a pleasant jest. We all regard him as a good fellow but utterlv unfitted for the job into which he was foisted. Amiable and honest, he was a suitable man to represent the Tony electorate of Warringah.

I remind the Prime Minister of a promise made the other day from his place at the table. I made a quotation from the Melbourne Herald as to the relative costs of the upkeep of Canada House and Australia House. I have no information to back the statement contained in that newspaper, but it was claimed to be authoritative, and it stated that the cost of upkeep of Australia House, which was given in detail, was ten times as great as that of Canada House. I have heard this evening that most of the officers employed at Canada House are Canadian born, while many of those at Australia House are English born and monocle trained. I should like Australia House to be typical of Australia. It has cost, and it continues to cost, this country a great deal of money. I support the proposed omission of this item.







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