3rd Parliament · 3rd Session
The House met at 2.30 p.m., pursuant to the proclamation of His Excellency the Governor-General.
The Clerk read the proclamation.
Mr. Speaker took the chair andread prayers.
The Acting Usher of the Black Rod, being announced, was admitted, and de livered the message, that His Excellency the Governor-General desired the attendance of honorable members in the Senate chamber.
Mr. Speaker and honorable members attended accordingly, and having returned,
Mr. SPEAKER informed the House that he had received a return to the writ issued for the election of a member to serve in the House of Representatives for the electoral division of Adelaide, in the place of the Right Hon. Charles Cameron Kingston, deceased, indorsed with a certificate of the election of Ernest Alfred Roberts.
Mr. ROBERTS made and subscribed the oath of allegiance.
– I wish to know if the Minister of Defence will lay on the table all papers relating to the visit of Major-General Hoad to England?
– I think there is no objection.
– Seeing that there is good ground for believing that many. Asiatics find their way into Australia illegally, will the Prime Minister consider the advisability of proposing some form of registration whereby those who have the right to be here may be distinguished from those who have not?
– I am glad of this opportunity to say that, although searching inquiries have been in progress for some months, we are unable to discover that there has been any such access of Asiatics as has been rumoured. However, the investigations are not complete, and should an illegal access be disclosed, the Government will take whatever steps may be necessary to put an end to it.
– I wish to know if the Prime Minister recently received a letter from Mr. H. J. Scott, of Adelaide, suggesting that the action taken by the Board of Trade in England, for giving publicity and continuity to the work of exhibitions, should be followed in Australia? If so, will he lay it on the table of the House?
– The letter was received within the last two days. There is no objection to laying it on the table.
– Statements are being published to the effect that it is the intention of the Department of the PostmasterGeneral to curtail country mail services. I wish to know from the Minister if there is any truth in them ?
– There is no foundation for the rumour. The practice followed during the last seven years has not been departed from, and no departure from it is intended.
Allowances and ‘ Expenses
– I wish to know from the Minister of Defence what arrangements have been made as to the allowances and expenses of Militia officers sent abroad for training. Are they to be differently treated in this regard from officers of the Permanent Forces?
– The full terms of the arrangements have been made public ; but, as I cannot trust my memory for them, I shall be glad to answer the honorablemember’s question in a day or two.
– I desire to ask thePostmasterGeneral’ if the contractors for the transportation of mails to Tasmania have been making deliveries during the last three months within the times specified ?
– Yes ; so far as my knowledge goes. If the honorable- member has information to the contrary, I shall, be glad if lie will let me have it.
– Has the Government instructed the Commonwealth returning officers throughout Australia to inquire of their deputies and other assistants whether they will be ready to conduct a general election at an early date?
– I do not know what instructions have been given, but whateverthey may be, they have been issued in the ordinary course of departmental routineNo special instructions have been given bvthe Government to prepare for an early election.
Irregular Delivery of Mails in Queensland - Alleged Reduction of Mail Services and Telephone Service Estimates, New South Wales - Telephone Guarantees - Telephone Switchboard, Sydney - Telephone Extensions, Illawarra - Telephone Line, Cessnock.
– I desire to ask the Postmaster-General a question regarding the irregular delivery of mails in Queensland, and more particularly at Hughenden. Complaints have reached me that it takes something like seven days for a letter to reach Hughenden, from a distance of 130 miles. Will the Minister look into this matter, and have a more regular delivery provided throughout Queensland, and especially in the more remote portions of that State?
– With pleasure.
– Is the PostmasterGeneral aware that the operations of his Department in New South Wales are seriously hampered for lack of funds, and that new works and services are at present completely held up? Further, I wish to know whether there is any justification for the prevalent belief that drastic reductions of mail and postal facilities generally are contemplated In that State?
– Replying first of all to the second question put by the honorable member, I may say that such reductions are not contemplated, and have not been made. As to the first question, I may say that the Treasurer is placing at my disposal as much money as possible to carry out necessary works.
– I wish to ask the Postmaster-General whether it is a fact that the Estimates of his Department, relating to the telephone service, have been referred back to the responsible officers in order that they might be reduced, and further, if, as a result of that action, any new telephone lines that have been approved will not be provided for in this year’s Estimates?
– As a matter of fact, the Estimates for my Department are not yet settled. No course has been- taken in respect of them that is extraordinary or different from what has been taken by Treasurers in previous years. ‘
– I desire to ask the Postmaster-General, in view of the fact that local residents have, in a number of cases, provided the necessary guarantees to cover the cost of telephone exchanges and telephone extensions, when it is likely money will be’ made available for the works?
– I hope that the Estimates of the. Department will be completed within the next few days, and that the money will be made available for the works referred to.
– I wish to ask the Postmaster-General whether there has yet been installed in the Sydney General Post Office a switchboard by means of which there may be an efficient telephone service throughout that city and suburbs.
– The ‘ switchboard referred to is installed, and the connexions are being made.
– As a matter of urgency, I desire to ask the PostmasterGeneral whether, in the case of telephone extensions and other works which are- necessary in my constituency, he has brought the subject before the Treasurer, with a view to having the necessary funds provided?
– How much does the honorable member desire to have expended ?
– About .£20,000 in my constituency.
– The Treasurer and myself are in conference, and my honorable colleague is doing his best to meet the demand.
– I desire to know definitely whether anything has been done in regard to one matter in my own constituency. Tenders were accepted for the materials necessary for the construction of a telephone line to Woolongong - a big industrial centre of Illawarra. I understand, however, tha.t it has been found necessary, in addition, to have some repoling done ; and I desire to know whether that matter has been brought before the Treasurer, with a view to providing the necessary funds.
– Every urgent matter has been brought under the notice of the Treasurer, who is doing his best to provide the funds.
– I desire to ask the Postmaster- General whether he proposes to retract the promise he made for the establishment of a telephone exchange at Cessnock.
– I propose at the earliest possible moment to carry out every promise I have made.
– Last session I asked the Minister of Trade and Customs whether it was the intention of the Government to bring in a Bill to amend the Patents Act, so as to bring it into line with recent legislation in Great Britain, under which holders of patent rights in the United Kingdom are compelled to manufacture in Great Britain within a certain time the goods in respect of which those rights are held. There is no reference to the matter in His Excellency’s speech, and I wish to know whether the Government intend to introduce such a Bill? Mr. AUSTIN CHAPMAN.- The matter has not been overlooked, and if time and opportunity permit, the Government will be pleased to introduce such a measure, and, if possible, to carry it into law.
– Will the Prime Minister state whether it is the intention of the Government this session to bring in a Bill for the appointment of a High Commissioner?
– I desire to ask the Prime Minister whether, in view of the recent decision of the High Court, in a case affecting the use of workers’ trade marks, it is the intention of theGovernment to introduce legislation enabling such marks to be legally used throughout Australia?
– We have not yet received the official text of the judgment in question. As soon as it reaches us the question will be taken into consideration.
– I wish to ask the Minister of Defence who is acting as senior military officer in the absence from the Commonwealth of the Inspector-General of Military Forces?
– The Inspector-General will be absent for about six months, and I. think that we shall be able during that period to get on without specifically setting apart any one officer to do his work.
– My desire is to ascertain from the Minister who is the senior military officer of the Permanent Forces of the Commonwealth.
– The chief officer of the Military Board is the A.-G., Colonel Wallack.
– Is he the senior officer now in the Commonwealth ?
– Yes, under the present organization.
– I desire to ask the Prime Minister whether the Government have yet completed arrangements for the acquisition of a site in London for Commonwealth offices?
– Not finally, although it is hoped that within the next week or two we shall be able to make to the House a statement on the subject. We are almost within reach of decision upon two of the best sites offering.
– I desire to supplement a question which I put on two occasions last session to the Prime Minister in reference to the practice adopted by the several Departments in dealing with tenders. I wish to know whether the Government have determined that the preference granted to British over foreign goods in connexion with tenders shall be that which this Parliament has fixed, or whether every Minister is to grant a secret preference, according to his mood or mind, to British as opposed to foreign goods?
– There has been considerable correspondence between several of the Departments and myself regarding their procedure. They are not entirely at one as to their past practice, but at the moment I am unable to give the honorable member the specific information he seeks. If he will give notice of his question for next Tuesday I shall be able then, I think, to supply him with an answer.
Appointment of Administrator. - Chief Surveyor Drummond. - Mining Leases
– Will the Prime Minis ter inform the House when the permanent appointment of an administrator for Papua is likely to be made?
– I think that by the next mail, which will arrive in a week or two, we shall receive the last papers in reference to the particular matters that have been under inquiry during the last two or three months. If we do we shall be able to take the question into consideration immediately afterwards.
– I desire to ask the Prime Minister whether the charge made against the Chief Government Surveyor in Papua, Mr. Drummond, has been withdrawn ?
– Mr. Drummond was allowed to resign, but declined to do so. Further reports relating to the matter with which Mr. Drummond and other officers were associated subsequently reached Melbourne, and were reviewed by me. After consideration, I came to the conclusion that Mr. Drummond should not be dealt with in a manner different from the others charged with him, but much more lightly punished, and that he should not be invited to resign. That was intimated to Mr. Drummond; but, after receiving the intimation, he, of his own accord, preferred to resign.
– I desire to ask the Prime Minister whether any information has been obtained in pursuance of the motion passed by this House in reference to mining leases in Papun ?
– I hesitate to charge my memory, but think so. However, I shall satisfy myself by to-morrow.
– I wish, through you, Mr. Speaker, to ask the honorable member for Kooyong a question without notice. Has the honorable member’s attention been called to a press report-
– The honorable member can only ask a question relating to a matter of business which stands in the name of another honorable member on the notice-paper. As there is no such business in the present instance, I am afraid that the honorable member cannot ask the question.
– I desire to ask the Honorary Minister, who, I understand, is Chairman of the Postal Commission, whether he can give any information as to when that body is likely to visit Western Australia. I have had several requests for information on the point; and I presume that this Royal Commission, following the example of other similar bodies, will continue their work while Parliament is sitting.
– Atthis stage, it is impossible to determine the movements of the Commission. It is anticipated, however, that at some time during the recess next year the Commission will visit Western Australia.
– I would ask the Prime Minister, without any reference to the fact that this is the first day of the session, whether the Government have considered the wisdom of limiting replies to questions without notice?
Mr.J oseph Cook. - The Ministry have the matter in their ownhands.
– I do not desire to discuss the question ; but it seems to me that there is some room for improvement in this connexion.
– The subject has been considered, and I shouldhave intimated to-morrow - it was not desired to intervene on the first day of the session - that honorable members will oblige the Government if they confine questions without notice to those to which answers are urgent, and ought not to wait. I shall ask honorable members to give notice of all other questions-.
– I have to inform the House that I forwarded to the GovernorGeneral the resolution of sympathy passed to Lady Linlithgow, on the occasion of the death of Lord Linlithgow, the first GovernorGeneral of the Commonwealth, and that I have received from her the following letter in acknowledgment thereof : -
Grand Hotel, St. Heliers, Jersey, 6th May.
Dear Mr. Speaker,
Please convey to the Members of the House of Representatives of the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia my most sincere and grateful thanks for the kind message they have sent me.
The knowledge of how greatly Australians loved and appreciated my dear husband will always be a help and consolation to me. My children and I are deeply touched by the sympathy and kindness which has been shown us by the people of Australia in our great sorrow.
I am, dear Mr. Speaker,
Hersey A. Linlithgow.
– I have to communi cate to the House the address of welcome to Admiral Sperry, presented on behalf of the Commonwealth Parliament on the occasion of the visit of the United Stares Atlantic Fleet, together with the remarks of the President and Speaker on making such presentation, and Admiral Sperry’s reply thereto(vide page 10).
MINISTERS laid upon the table the following gapers : -
Papua - Ordinance of 1908 - Land. Audit Acts -
Provisional Treasury Regulations 137v - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 79.
Provisional London Account Regulations - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 89.
Bounties Act -
Regulations - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 69. Substituted Regulation 16(Provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 94.
Customs Act - Repeal of Regulations, viz. : -
Regulation dated 14th August, 1903, re Duty on Condensed Whole Egg ; and Statutory Rules 1905, No. 39 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 82.
Excise Act - Substituted Drawback Regulation 50 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 68.
Defence Acts -
Military Cadet Corps- Regulations 2, 24, 45 Amended (provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 72.
Military Forces -
Regulations (Provisional) and Standing Orders (including Defence Acts and Statutory Rules 1908, No. 60, &c.).
Regulations Amended (Provisional) -
No. 2 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 71.
No. 2 - Statutory Rules 1908, No.
No. 199 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 98.
Financial and Allowance Regulations Amended (Provisional) -
No. 77 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 88.
No. 93 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 70.
No. 105 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 97.
Naval Forces -
Financial and Allowance Regulations No. 51 Amended(Provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 8f.
Census and Statistics Act - Regulations - (Provisional) As to additional matters of which Statistics are to be collected - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 66.
As to additional matters of which Statistics are to be collected - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 95.
Declaration by Officer under Section 7 - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 76.
Lands Acquisition Act -
Land leased for grazing purposes at Langwarrin Military Reserve, Victoria.
Land acquired under at -
Bellinger, New South Wales - As a site for a Post Office.
Cessnock, New South Wales - As a site for a Post Office.
Enoggera, Queensland - For Defence purposes.
Maribyrnong, Victoria - As a site for a Cordite Factory.
Windsor, Victoria - As a site for a Tele- phone Exchange.
Public Service Act -
Temporary Employ?s - Return for Financial Year 1907-8.
Regulations Amended, &c. -
No. 104 - Sorters - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 64.
No. 104 - Assistant, Senior, Post Office - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 65.
No. 104 - Fireman - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 75.
No. 104 - Instrument Fitter - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 77.
No.104 - Groom in Charge - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 78.
No. 104 - New Regulation (Provisional) substituted for Nos. 96, 100, 103, 104 - Statutory Rules 1908, No.83.
Nos. 51, 86, 159 to 161, 163 to 166, &c. - Repealed, and New Regulations (Provisional) substituted - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 90.
Nos. 30, 57, 89, 89a, 90, 26S - Substituted Regulations (Provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908S, No. 91.
Nos. 264, 276a - Substituted Regulations (Provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 92.
No. 168- Substituted Regulation (Provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 67.
No. 172, 182 - Substituted Regulations (Provisional) - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 80.
No. 267a - Provisional - Statutory Rules 1908, No. 93.
The Clerk laid upon the table
Cost and Revenue under State and Commonwealth of Transferred Services, &c. - Return to an Order of the House dated 29th May, 1908.
Patent Office - Particulars as to Applications, Examiners, and Salaries. - Return to an Order of the House dated 5th June, 1908.
Advertisements by Government, and Cost, &c., of Commonwealth Gazelle. - Return to an Order of the House dated 21st May, 1908.
Bill presented by Mr. Deakin, and read a first time.
– I have to report that I have attended in the Senate chamber, where His Excellency the GovernorGeneral was pleased to deliver his Opening Speech, of which, for greater accuracy, I have obtained a copy, but which, unless honorable members desire it, I do not propose to read(vide page 5).
Motion (by Mr. Deakin) agreed to -
That a Committee, consisting of Mr. Chanter, Mr. Crouch, Mr. Salmon, and Mr. John Thomson be appointed to prepare an AddressinReply to the speech delivered by His Excellency the Governor-General to both Houses of the Parliament.
That the Committeedo report this day.
Members of the Committee having retired,
– If any honorable member desired to object to serve on a Committee, his name could be withdrawn. I was not aware, however, that any one had objected to act on this Committee.
– I have not refused to act on the Committee, and I propose to do so in a few minutes; but I do not see why I should leave the chamber immediately.
The Committee having re-entered the chamber, presented the proposed AddressinReply, which was read by the Clerk,as follows -
May it please Your Excellency -
We, the House of Representatives of the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia, in Parliament assembled, beg to express our loyalty to our Most Gracious Sovereign, and to thank your Excellency for the Speech which you have been pleased to address to Parliament.
.- I move -
That the Address-in-Reply to His Excellency’s Speech, as read by the Clerk, be agreed to fey the House.
Parliament has to-day been opened by a new Governor-General. We have said au revoir to the late Governor-General, Lord Northcote, and to his excellent lady. Their sojourn amongst us has led to a great deal of good, and has endeared them to the people of Australia very greatly. We have the warmest sentiments towards Lord Northcote on account of his excellent and tactful administration, and the close interest that he always took in Australian affairs, and towards Lady Northcote for the true patriotism she displayed at all times in regard to everything connected with Australia. In fact, from the moment that they landed upon shores until they regretfully departed, everything to them was Australian, and their one object seemed to be to advance in. every’ way the best interests of the Commonwealth. We part with them with regret, and we feel certain that, in whatever part of the Old World they may happen to be, Australia will always have in them very strong champions. The present GovernorGeneral, Lord Dudley, comes to us with great recommendations, which, I believe, are thoroughly deserved. We had the honour of being represented by him at the Tercentenary celebrations recently held in Canada. He conveyed our greetings to the people of that Dominion, who are our kith and kin, and has told us to-day personally, although it has been previously announced officially, that he brings to the people of Australia, through this Parliament, the hearty reciprocal greetings of the Canadian people. His Excellency was also pleased to make a reference, which will be very gratifying to Australians, to the admirable manner in which the duty, which on this occasion was a pleasure, of welcoming the American Fleet was carried out, and to the magnificent reception given to our cousins from across the seas. The memory of that visit thrills the heart. The occasion will be written in history in the years to come. The lessons that it has taught are numerous. One is that, as was so often said when we were fraternizing with our relatives, the ties of blood are very strong. The Fleet came to us in peace, although war-clad. They conveyed to us a lesson which I am sure will later on be taken to heart by us. The House will agree with me that the thanks of Australia are due to the Prime Minister for the brilliant inspiration that months and months ago prompted him to offer the invitation from the Australian people to their cousins in America. I am, satisfied that all classes and all parties feel grateful to the Prime Minister for initiating that visit, and also for the part he took in conveying to our kith and kin, when here, our hearty feelings towards them. When the project was first mooted, the press could not agree about it, and even amongst individuals it was thought impossible for a great nation like America to accept an invitation for its Fleet to visit a country like Australia, which was comparatively a new settlement. I shall never forget how, when the Prime Minister was addressing a vast audience in the CentennialHall, in Sydney, trying to teach Australians as a whole their duty in defending this great heritage of ours, a telegram was handed up to him as he stood upon the platform. He opened it, his face beamed, and he read the message to the assembled audience. The reading of it made the building reverberate with cheer after cheer, for it showed that the Americans thought so much of Australia that their great Fleet would pay us a visit. From that moment there was no doubt about the heartiness and loyalty of the welcome that would be extended to them when they did arrive. Their brilliant entry into the harbor of Sydney, and afterwards into the port of Melbourne; how we fraternized with them and they with us; how, as the days rolled on, the feelings of one to the other grew deeper and deeper - all these things are now matters of history. Above all, their visit taught the world that there was a place’ called Australia. Although it should have been to the interests, and was the duty, of the English press to hold up Australia as a place where life and liberty were always secure, it is regrettable that Australians who have visited the Old Country should have had from time to time occasion to complain that while in the English press they could read plenty about our brethren in Canada, they could find nothing about Australia. If there was anything about Australia in the’ press there at all, it was, unfortunately, to our detriment - some little catch phrase that had been uttered in party conflict in Australia, and was seized upon by the English press to be given to the people of Great Britain. Thus the people in other parts of the world have been unable to form a true idea of the kind of place that Australia is.
– The same thing is still going on.
– No doubt ; but the recognition of this country by a great nation like America, and the reports of the movements of its Fleet in the press of the world, will teach people abroad that Australia is a good place to live in. The visit of the Fleet has done a great deal for us, and we are thankful to the American people for having sent it. Not only are we bound by ties of kinship to them, but we have also the same aims, ambitions, and aspirations, and seek the same goal. The magnificent Fleet which America has made from its own products, by its own energies, merely for defensive purposes, has taught us that we have delayed too long in making similar preparations, and that it is time to commence to put ourselves on the defensive.
– Our population is hardly as large as that of America.
– There was a time when the population of the United States was no greater than our population is now.
– America had not then a Fleet such as she now possesses.
– America was never content to stand still, and it is our duty to make a commencement. The visit of the Fleet has shown the world that the white races, if there is to be trouble, will stand shoulder to shoulder iri defence of their common interests.
– It has also taught us that we need more population.
– If the Government will assist me, we shall soon have more population. I feel certain that I have every member with me in what I have sa:d in regard to the visit of the American warships. I trust, hope, and believe, that the new Governor-General will be as tactful, as resourceful, as patriotic, and as successful as his brilliant predecessors. The speech .delivered by His Excellency this afternoon is not lengthy, but contains multum in f arvo. If members will put party feeling on one side, and deal patriotically with national interests, this Parliament may establish a new era of prosperity for Australia. The Government promise to deal, first, with the Capital Site question^ I do not know why this matter is to be brought forward so early, though I understand that it is thought desirable to settle a vexed question as soon as possible. I shall not now go into all the pros and cons of the subject. Every means have been taken to obtain a proper choice. The Government of New South Wales, in the first instance, appointed a Commissioner to report on the best sites available, and these were offered to the Commonwealth. Members of this Parliament Iia ve also from time to time visited the selected sites, and after exhaustive debates, the Parliament has chosen one of them. A Bill is now to be introduced for ratifying what has been done, and its discussion will give opportunity for the moving of an amendment. I hope that when it is disposed of all parties will abide by the decision come to, and be ready to uphold the right of this Parliament to choose that site which it considers best in the’ interests of Australia. Let there be no more bickering on the subject. The choice made may not please every one ; it may not please me, as. the last did not; but when Parliament has come to a deliberate decision, the matter should end there. The next item on the programme is national defence, upon which I shall not speak at length, as there will be other opportunities to discuss it. The hearts of the people have been stirred in regard to this matter, and a referendum would show that they are of opinion that it now devolves upon this Parliament to lay down proper lines of defence for land and sea. I recognise the financial problems involved. But if one consideration more than another induced the States to federate, it was the feeling that it would be impossible for six disunited States to act together, and that, if clanger came, it would be necessary to meet i’t with a strong force, under a single strong administration. We have the means for defence, but they need regulating by the formulation of a proper system. We cannot afford to dally longer with this question. The States must recognise that if the one-fourth of the Customs revenue now allotted to Commonwealth expenditure is insufficient to provide for defence, we must take as much more as may be necessary to protect our great heritage. I hope, therefore, that, before the session closes, a scheme will be adopted under which we shall go on increasing our defensive strength, so that in the not far distant future we may be able to say to the Mother Country, upon which we have relied too long, “ We are in a position to help you by’ defending ourselves.” The next matter with which Parliament will be called upon to deal is the acquisition of the Northern Territory, which is connected with defence considerations. It is well known that one of the States has found it impossible to properly control the destinies of this portion of Australia, and that it thinks that the territory can be better administered under the Australian Parliament than under a State Parliament. Certain offers have been made which will be detailed to the House. We know that the territory possesses a large area of fertile land, upon which, perhaps, millions could be successfully settled. If this came about, it would greatly assist in the defence of Australia. The territoryhas at times been described as a barren waste ; but those who have taken the trouble to read what has been written about it by’ those who have traversed it, or who have talked with others who have been there, must recognise its value, and assent to its acquisition by the Commonwealth as soon as possible. In dealing with this question I hope that party ties will be forgotten, and only the best interests of Australia studied. I come now to what is termed the new protection policy. The Constitution, which was framed by some of our best men, and accepted by the people, is left for interpretation to the High Court of Australia. It often happens, however, that after projects of legislation have been debated ad nauseam, and a Parliament thinks that it has clearly expressed its views, the Court called upon to interpret an Act declares that it bears a meaning contrary to that intended. Such decisions, however, afford no excuse for railing at the Courts, whose Judges are bound to interpret the laws according to their oaths and consciences. But the .people who accepted the Constitution have the right to alter it. In this instance, the High Court has declared that this -Parliament does not possess certain powers which I think it is the desire of the people that we should have. It is the wish of the people that the protection of industries should benefit, not only manufacturers, but also those who assist them in the production of wealth. Therefore, it is our duty to ask them if they are satisfied to allow the Constitution to remain as interpreted by the High Court. I think that their answer will be clear. They will say that they desire to enlarge its provisions in order to give us the power which the High Court says we do not now possess, and I congratulate the Government on having determined to deal with the matter. Its consideration may provoke a certain amount of controversy; but I think that, in the end, the prosperity of our people will be benefited. One of the greatest problems with which we shall have to deal is that of the financial arrangements between the Commonwealth’ and the States. I do not wish to say anything which might cause irritation to the authorities of the States. We have had a reference to the necessity for measures relating to the improvement of our defence system, to the acquisition of the Northern Territory, anc to the construction of railway lines, across this great continent, so tEat all the States may be connected. The States Legislatures must recognise that it is impossible for us to carry out these undertakings in the absence of the necessary funds, and that the one-fourth of Customs and Excise revenue now allotted to us under the Constitution is absolutely insufficient to enable us to make provision for all that is required at our hands. The financial difficulty is a pressing one. Why should the States feel aggrieved when we propose that our present proportion of Customs and Excise revenue shall be increased? We are seeking to advance the interests of those whom the States Legislatures represent, and if the Federal Parliament can spend money wisely for the benefit of the whole of the people of Australia, surely the States should” not complain. I believe that the Commonwealth Government have made the States 9ne of the most liberal offers that could be conceived.
– Does the honorable member refer to the Treasurer’s offer?
– Yes ; I am astounded that it was not at once accepted. The States must meet this question of finance face to face, just as we have to meet it. We must obtain money by some means or other, because Australia demands that we shall deal with all the great undertakings to which I have alluded.
– We must obtain it honestly if possible.
– Honestly all the time. If the States deny us our rights in this respect, then, in order that we may faithfully discharge our duties, we must take other action, but we do not desire to be compelled to do so. I hope that the negotiations now proceeding between the Commonwealth and the States will have a satisfactory issue, and that they will do away with the friction which has occurred, and which is unpatriotic and antagonistic to the well-being of the. people as a whole.
– How have the States managed up to the present time to build their railways?
– I am afraid that the right honorable member and I are not at one on this phase of the question. Hitherto the States have constructed railways out of loan moneys; but I have always been opposed to borrowing, believing that we should live within our revenue, and that, for developmental purposes at all events, we should not have recourse to loan moneys. There is no doubt that proposals will be made to raise loans for big undertakings, but I repeat that I have always been opposed to borrowing, and think that I always will be. Like the right honorable member for Swan, I want to see these great lines of railways constructed, but I think that if we put more people on the land, and so increase our production, our revenue will expand, and we shall find it unnecessary to have recourse to a policy of borrowing in order to build them. In this respect we owe a duty, not only to ourselves, but to posterity. We have no right to continue to saddle posterity with the cost of various big works. We should have the courage to say that we are prepared to do our duty, and, as far as possible, to keep within our means.
– Has not posterity a right to pay for some of the benefits it will receive at our hands?
– It has, but I do not wish, at this stage, to trench upon that phase of the question. Up to the present, the States have borrowed something like ^244,000,000. Had that money been expended upon reproductive works only we should not have such an outcry against the system as we have ; but we know full well that a considerable proportion of that huge sum has been expended on nonproductive works. Some of the States have been more lavish than have others in the expenditure of loan moneys, and it was their action that caused the National Parliament, very wisely I think, at the outset of its career to say that it was determined to live within its means, and not to borrow.
– All I know is that the towns are deriving the benefit, whilst the country is getting nothing.
– The honorable member would not say that if he visited my electorate.
– The honorable member for Maranoa is raising another question. I recognise quite as fully as he does the necessity of developing the country, and know that there are many means by which its progress and prosperity may be promoted. We need to settle the country, but we ought not to put people on the land unless we can hold out to them some prospect of prosperity. If we continue the development of Australia by means . the false and vicious system of borrowing, with the result that the people will have to be heavily taxed, we shall make a grave mistake. This Parliament has laid down the lines on which the Commonwealth may be most properly developed, and I hope that we shall continue to follow them. Another matter of the utmost importance to which reference is made in the GovernorGeneral’s speech, is the necessity of establishing the iron industry in Australia. Iron is at the basis of all manufactures, and I care not by what means the industry is established here. Some years ago, the United States, which recently sent its Atlantic squadron to our shores, was in the same position as ourselves. It did not produce iron or steel ; but to-day it is at the head of the world in their manufacture. The vessels of the magnificent Squadron which steamed into Port Phillip the other day were constructed out of metal obtained from native ores, and today that Fleet stands as a menace to any foreign power that would invade the land of the Union. Have we no natural products to enable us to do likewise? I venture to say that the natural resources of Australia are second to none. We have differed in the past as to what ought to be done to develop them, but the time has arrived when we should deal definitely with thewhole question, and either by its nationalization or by the granting of bounties, or some other method, establish the iron industry on a firm basis. A great deal, is said from time to time concerning defence. We train our boys in the use of arms - we create cadet corps and supply them with uniforms - but they have at the present time to depend upon other countries for their supply of rifles. We have, lying undeveloped in Australia, deposits of iron ore sufficient to provide for the manufacture, notof thousands, but of millions of rifles and other arms ; yet at the present time we are annually expending something like , £8,000,000 on articles manufactured abroad from iron and steel. The establishment of the iron industry is necessary for commercial as well as for defence purposes. In all the States deposits of ore exist in abundance, and I hope that the session will not close before Parliament has definitely decided to give the iron industry such an impetus as will make Australia entirely independent of other countries in this respect. It is immaterial to me how the industry is established; all that I desire is that it shall be placed as soon as possible upon a sound basis. If we take up the work and place the industry upon a good footing, this Parliament will be blessed by posterity for having established one of the greatest industries it is possible to create.
– Is the honorable member referring more particularly to the wirenetting industry?
– That is only one branch of the iron industry. At the present time we see on every hand telephone and telegraph poles, and iron and steel girders and rails bearing foreign brands.
-Who is the “foreigner”? The honorable member spoke just now of the “dear old Motherland.”
– I am sure that the honorable member would not seek to do me an injustice. He knows full well that I had no intention of referring to the people of the Motherland as “ foreigners.” Although Australian born, I have for the Old Country as warm a feeling as has any one. When I speak of “ foreigners” I have in mind those living outside the British Empire.
– Then would the honorable member allow goods from India to come in free?
– My desire is to preserve Australia for the white races, and I shall be prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with the honorable member in resisting an invasion of inferior races, no matter from where it may come. The great manufacturing industries of foreign countries are already established, and we assist them year by year by expending millions upon their output,while our own people remain untaught and untrained in respect of those very industries.
– The honorable member has in mind the Steel Trust of America.
– I have already pointed out the progress that the United States has made in the production of iron and steel. Whilst I do not wish to introduce the fiscal question, I cannot refrain from reminding honorable members that the policy of the United States has been “America for the Americans.” That policy has placed the United States at the topof the tree, so to speak, in competition with countries which have opened their doors to the goods of the foreigner.
– Would the honorable member impose a duty on the “ Dudley “ brand of iron?
-My opinion is that a duty can be done without, but, if necessary, I should be prepared to place a duty on any brand of iron from outside Australia.
– Then England is a foreign nation, so far as the honorable member is concerned?
– The honorable member is absolutely wrong. He knows I am sure, that I differentiate between iron and steel imported from within the Empire, and iron and steel imported from without - that I favour a preference to the former. I should like to direct attention to a proposal which was mentioned in a previous session, to establish a Commonwealth Bureau of Agriculture. In this regard, again, there is an absence of information, which, however, will doubtless be supplied in the forthcoming debate on the subject. By some means or other, members of the States Governments have- become possessed of the idea that the establishment of a Commonwealth Bureau of Agriculture will have the effect of injuring the agricultural prosperity of the States, while, as a matter of fact, the reverse will be the effect. We know of what immense value the Federal Bureau of Agriculture has been to the producers of the United States; and I think that what has been done there can be done in Australia.
– What is the use of establishing a Federal Bureau if the States Governments will not allow it to do anything ?
– I have already referred to what I regard as an error on the part of the States Governments in coming -to the conclusion that a Federal Bureau might prove antagonistic or inimical to agriculture within their several boundaries. As a matter of fact, the Federal Bureau would be an auxiliary organization, which, by monetary and other assistance, would tend to develop to the fullest extent the agricultural resources of each State, and it is in the interests of one and all of the States that there should be such an institution as quickly as possible. As time is pressing, I only casually allude to the intentions of the Government as disclosed in His Excellency’s speech in reference to the federalizing of the law relating to public companies, bankruptcy, marine insurance, and bills of exchange, and also in regard to the amendment of the Electoral Law, the Public Service Act, and Penny Postage. Many ‘ of these are, no doubt, very necessary ‘ reforms ; but, in regard to penny postage, there is a difference of opinion as to whether or not it is wise and politic to establish it now. My opinion, which I have expressed before, is that, whatever we may do in regard to penny postage, we should, at least, have uniform postage throughout the Commonwealth. At present there are differences in this connexion ; and it is most desirable that there should be one uniform stamp to carry letters to all parts of Australia. For instance, penny postage is found in Victoria, and, I think, in some of the other States; but beyond these we find that letters require a stamp of twice the value. This is a most irritating condition of affairs, which causes a lot of friction, especially on the borders of States. It is necessary either to agree to penny postage - which, no doubt, would bring about an immediate reduction of the revenue - or to establish a. uniform stamp throughout Australia.
– Is the question of penny postage really going to be dealt with this session ?
– As I presume the honorable member is going to assist the Government, there should be no difficulty in disposing of even the question of penny postage before the end. of the session.
– Does the honorable member, then, suppose that this question will be dealt with last?
– I am not considering these questions in the order in which they are proposed to be dealt with, but in the order in which they appear in His Excellency’s speech’.
– Does the honorable member think it fair to establish penny postage at a loss when the Estimates of every department are being sent back again and again for reduction ?
– Personally, I am in favour, and shall support, the establishment of penny postage. I recognise that it would mean a reduction of revenue; but I hope that Parliament, as a whole, will admit that the Post and Telegraph Department, above all others, should not be run entirely on strictly commercial lines, but should be administered on developmental lines. I am sure that if any loss should thereby be caused, the people of Australia would be perfectly willing to bear it.
– What is the use of the honorable member talking such flapdoodle; he knows that it is not true?
– I must ask the honorable member to withdraw that remark.
– What is the objectionable word, Mr. Speaker ?
– The honorable member just now said that the honorable member for Riverina must know that a remark he was making was untrue. If the honorable member for Maranoa charges the honorable member for Riverina with saying something that he knows is not true, such a charge is unparliamentary.
– I should be very sorry to charge the honorable member for Riverina with telling an untruth, though he might be a little “ wide of the mark.”
– I must ask the honorable member for Maranoa to formally withdraw the remark he made.
– Certainly, sir.; I withdraw it.
– I am perfectly certain that the honorable member for Maranoa had no intention of being personally offensive; though there is no doubt a difference of opinion between us, and perhaps he did not quite grasp what I said. My contention is that it would be absolutely wrong to conduct the Post and Telegraph Department on purely- commercial lines, which would mean depriving the settlers in the back districts of postal, telegraphic, and telephonic facilities.
– The settlers do not’ get facilities now when the postage is 2d., and I do not see how they could get them if the postage were reduced to id.
– What I contend is that, even if the provision of those facilities meant a loss, the people of Australia would be quite willing to bear that loss.
– At present the Department are throwing away about 30s. on many telephones, and are thereby causing a loss of something like .£70,000.
– That is a matter of administration. Country districts cannot be expected for many years to return sufficient revenue to meet expenditure, whereas the great centres return a considerable profit which ought to assist in the extension of facilities out back. Even if what the honorable member for Angas says is true, should we, therefore, deprive settlers of telephones? Certain facilities were afforded to country residents by the States Governments prior to Federation, and a rumour has got abroad that these facilities are to be curtailed on the ground that their provision does not pay. I was, therefore, glad to hear to-day, in answer to a question by me, that there is no such intention on the part of the Government; and I am sure we all recognise that it would be absolutely impossible to serve the country people as they ought to be served if the postal administration were regarded strictly from the pounds, shillings, and pence point of view.
– That is the view that is taken.
– And it is a view that I condemn. This expenditure ought to be regarded as developmental, with a view to placing people on the land. As a matter of fact, about the only blessing or pleasure which people have- in remote districts is the receipt of the mails once or twice a week; and it would be manifestly unjust to reduce the services in any way, even if otherwise a loss should be entailed. I thank honorable members for the cordial manner in which they have received my remarks. I trust that what I have said may have some influence, and that, during the present session, we shall rise above the interests of parties, and be all for Australia - that we shall strive, not merely to displace one Government for another, but to pass the best legislation as quickly as possible, and doing our duty without fear or favour, earn for Australia those blessings she so richly deserves.
– I join heartily with the honorable member for Riverina in his appreciation of the work done by the late Governor-General. Lord Northcote endeared himself to the people of Australia; and he was ably seconded by his excellent lady, who by the intimate acquaintance which she formed with all sections of the community, wasable to thoroughly gauge the strength of Australian sentiment. In Lady Northcote we shall have, I am sure, a loyal friend, who will do good work for Australia irc the future. In regard to the new GovernorGeneral, I desire to say, with all respect, that he will find the people here loyal, warmhearted, and appreciative. His Excellency’s record in other parts of the Empire justifies us in indulging thehappiest anticipations with regard to hisconnexion with us. We know that where he has represented His Majesty, and administered the Government in other parts of the Empire, he has won the heartiest approval and confidence of those with whom> he came in contact ; and, therefore, we have every reason to anticipate that in him we shall find a worthy successor to Lord Northcote. I am also in hearty accord with the expressionswhich fell from the honorable member for Riverina in reference to the visit of the great American Fleet. It was a stroke of genius - it was the act of a statesman on the part of Mr. Deakin - to issue this invitation. We cannot at present foresee, and it would be idle to attempt to prophesy, the results which may flow from that visit. We know that in the East the action of America has been most carefully watched, and those of us who take any interest at all in international questions must feel that it will at least have a very far-reaching effect upon the future of Australia and the Southern Pacific. The proposal of the Government with regard to the New Protection, will, I think, meet with the hearty approval and support of all sections of the House. The leader of the Opposition in Sydney recently assured the Commonwealth that he would give his support to the Government in their efforts to have the new protection principle finally placed within the scope of our Constitution.
– Did he say that?
– Yes, in either a speech or an interview which was reported in the press quite recently. I, as a protectionist, desire to assure the House that I would not be the protectionist I am - would not be in favour of the duties that I recently supported - were I not assured that the Government intended to secure some share of the benefits to those who work in our factories in the various industries which we have been protecting. Until the Commonwealth can give adequate protection by means of wages and labour conditions to those who are engaged in protected industries, I, for one, maintain that our protection, if not altogether futile, falls far short of what we desire, and of what those who are engaged in those industries undoubtedly deserve. The spectacle of manufacturers shifting from one State to another in order to escape wages boards, or the effects of other industrial laws which have been enacted by the States, should not be allowed to continue. We have seen, and can see to-day, I regret to state, manufacturers who are moving their sphere of operations from the places where they have been engaged for years, in order! to go to another part of Australia where the laws are not so stringent, where the wages are lower, and where the Statutes do not provide for proper conditions for their workmen. We can have no true Federation so long as this unfair competition has to be met by/’ those who do provide for their workmen a proper degree of that protection which they themselves enjoy. I regard the Capital Site question as being finally settled, but as a Federalist, I desire to remove every cause of irritation. I admit that there is a certain amount of irritation caused by the selection of the place which has already been fixed upon as the Capital Site, and by the fear of a certain number of people - who are entitled, of course, to consideration - that they will not get all the benefits which it was intended should accrue to the State of New South Wales when the question was dealt with in the framing of the Constitution. Their number is, perhaps, very small as compared with the population of Australia, but a great deal of political capital has been made out of the question, and it has been placed upon a plane much lower than it should occupy. The selection of the future home of this Parliament, and of the Government of Australia, should be a question altogether above party, and should be dealt with as one of the most important that can engage the attention either of the people or of Parliament. In those circumstances, I am prepared to give every opportunity to those who desire to alter the decision of Parliament, and allow them a further chance to substitute some other site - more favorable from their point of view. But I do hope that when the question is thus dealt with - and I understand that the Government intend to make it one of the first measures, if not the first measure of the session - we shall have a cessation of hostilities and an honorable agreement amongst ourselves that it shall be regarded as finally settled so far as Parliament is concerned. The question of defence is one in which I personally have taken some interest. I have been connected with the defence forces of Victoria for something like fifteen years, and during the whole time I have been in Parliament I have given special attention to the subject. I am delighted to find that the Government are determined that there shall be removed from Australia once and for ever the stigma which it undoubtedly bears ai present, of having an inadequate system of defence. I need not draw the attention of honorable members to the necessity of dealing with the question. I believe that they, as well as the people of Australia, have at last become fully seized of its vast importance, and are determined that it shall be dealt with speedily. Any one looking at the vacant spaces in this continent must at once be struck with the need of some action on the part of Parliament and people to protect the Commonwealth by dealing with them. There has been a marked alteration in public opinion during the last few years. I can remember that in the Victorian Parliament, only a year or two before Federation was inaugurated, the cadets were alluded to as toy soldiers, the cadet system being decried from various parts of the House, and belittled on every possible occasion. But the display at the review on the occasion of the visit of the Duke of York, I believe, altered all that. We had from that very day a marked change in public opinion, which has grown and developed to such an extent that there is now in Australia no more popular part of the Defence Forces than are the cadets. We all recognise that these lads, by giving up their time to drill, by placing themselves under discipline, and going through various physical exercises, are making themselves very much better citizens of Australia than they otherwise would be. In addition, we are laying the foundations, at the very root of our defence system, of a body of men who, if the need unhappily should arise, will be found the most effective defenders that we shall have upon the whole continent. With regard to the naval side of defence, those of us who were in the first Parliament will remember that Parliament decided that the defence vote should be reduced by a .very large sum. It was reduced by, I think, ^133,000. It was intended that the reduction should be made mainly by dispensing with the trappings and trimmings of the service, but we found that it was the naval side of the service that suffered when the cutting down took place. There was very little objection taken to that at the time, but here again a development in public opinion has taken place, and today we find the attention of people and Parliament directed more especially to the question of naval defence. In our early years we decided to almost completely abolish the volunteer system. As a volunteer, I deprecated that very strongly. I felt that a very grave mistake was made at the time, but it was done, ‘and we now have a system which is nearly altogether a militia one. Concurrently with that, however, a very much greater encouragement was given to our rifle clubs, and this to a certain extent compensated for what I believe was a mistaken policy in the direction I have indicated. With regard to the value of the Commonwealth ‘services, there cannot be two opinions. If we were in danger of invasion, it would be seen at once that we are not in a. position to properly and effectively defend our country. Some of us may feel that those dangers have been overestimated, but one needs only to go to some of the countries of the East, or read about them, or talk to those who have been there, to be struck with the almost immediate possibilities of some trouble from that quarter. Japan, flushed with success in her recent war with a white race, is, as we know, now looking further afield, and Australia undoubtedly affords her one of the most ready means of getting rid of her surplus population. Were it not for the protection of the British flag, there is no doubt that some overt act would have emanated from her long since.
– Has the honorable member any reason for saying that ?
– I have every reason. Japan is overpopulated ; she is flushed with victory, she desires to walk in the front rank of the nations, and to remove, once and for all, the idea that she is not competent to take her place amongst the nations of the world.
– She desires only to be left alone.-
– The honorable member may remain in that fool’s paradise as long as he pleases, but I, as one who desires to see this continent kept white, realize that every restriction which we set up in that particular direction must irritate such a people as the Japanese have proved themselves to be. On account of our very legislation alone, if for no other reason, those people, if we were not protected by Great Britain, would undoubtedly have taken some steps to attack us.
– We are inviting attack, then?
– If the honorable member means that action on our part to keep this country white is inviting attack,I am prepared to invite attack every time. I would rather go under and be absorbed entirely by the Japanese than be a member of a piebald or hall-breed race.
– That is not the point. The point is whether the honorable member is not indiscreet in getting up these scares.
– These things have been discussed over and over again, not only here, but in Japan. Does the honorable member not know that in the law institute at Tokio - an institute Based upon exactly the same lines as those which exist in Australia and other parts of the British Dominions - only a” few months ago a question raised and discussed was whether Australia had complied with international law by the effective occupation of her territory? If the honorable member for Angas is content to regard such an incident as completely satisfactory, I cannot join with him.
– That is not the point. The honorable member should not say that Japan would have attacked us but for our connexion with Great Britain.
– So long as we are in the position that we are in to-day, we are safe; but if the protection that we enjoy were withdrawn we should not be safe. In order that we may fit ourselves to take our own part it is necessary that we should pursue the steps which I believe the Government intend to propose. I ask honorable members to look at China. I am not going to invite an attack from China; but I cannot close my eyes or my mouth to the happenings in that country. China is now playing a part such as she has never played before. Her people are being roused by those in authority to take a greater interest in their government than they have ever taken, and the result has been the most effective trade boycott known in the history of the world. That boycott could not have been brought about without organization and the successful appeal to national sentiment. I have it on the authority of one who has seen it that in China to-day large bodies of men are being drilled with almost feverish activity. Those men are being prepared for some work; is it the work of defence or of offence? We are justified in viewing these happenings as a reason for preparing purselves to play our part when the inevitable trouble happens.
– A country’s best defence is to effectively occupy its territory.
– Undoubtedly. I should like now to say a word or two in regard to naval defence. A new factor is entering into the navies of the world. Until recently it has been considered necessary to man warships with those who have had maritime experience ; our men-o’-warsmen have been drawn mostly from the seaports of the countries which they have been called upon to defend. But a remark made by Admiral Sperry at Albany a day or two since is pregnant with meaning. He said that those manning his fleet were not drawn from the seaports of the United States. We know that they have come from all parts. But we must also recognise that the skilled men of the fleet are not sailors in the ordinary acceptation of the term ; they are, first of all, gunners, and, next, men accustomed to machinery. It is on the control of guns and the use of machinery that the value of the men-o’-warsmen must in the future depend. The Commonwealth should, therefore, at the earliest opportunity, take steps to perfect its defenders in gunnery. It is well to encourage rifle shooting, but we must pay most attention to our first line of der fence, and must, therefore, give every encouragement to the production of excellence in big gun practice. We are doing a great deal to foster rifle shooting, and I hope that the Minister of Defence will find means to deal still more liberally with our rifle clubs. It is a regrettable fact that Great Britain is not keeping her Navy up to the two-power standard. Other nations - two in particular - are rapidly approaching her in the building of large warships, and, in one case, at any rate, have gone still further. When Great Britain commenced to build Dreadnoughts, she found that Germany and France were prepared to spend immense sums in emulating and beating her. While she was building an 18,000-ton vessel, they were building vessels of 22,000 tons. The record of the Indomitable is one for us to be proud of, seeing that, notwithstanding her immense bulk and enormous displacement, she can beat the fleetest ocean greyhound now afloat. We must take great pride in the fact that our naval architects and builders have been able to produce such a vessel. We are also told that there is in the possession of the British Government a gun which can project a shell from London to Paris. We have that on the word of a very high military authority - I read the statement in an article recently written by an officer who had had an opportunity to examine the gun. If this gun will accomplish what is claimed for it, war in the old sense is at an end. Some of u5 have been accustomed to look upon the conquest of the air as sure to bring about the abolition of warfare, but arms having such an enormous effective range as I have mentioned will make it impossible for countries to indulge in the old forms of war, and instead of appeals to arms, the warfare of the future will be international industrial struggles. The old idea was that the establishment of an Australian Navy would bring about the separation of this country from the Old Land, but that is not now held by thinking people. There was, in the conservative mind, the impression that the desire for an Australian Navy was only the expression of the desire to cut the painter. But public opinion has changed, and to-day this project is viewed by die public men of Australia with much more favour than it was in the past. We cannot accuse the public men of Great- Britain of wishing to encourage the people of Australia to separate from the Empire, and yet, day after day, cablegrams appear in the press advising us to form a Navy of our own. An Australian Navy would not be a huge fleet of ocean-going battleships ; it would be built for defence rather than offence, and designed to protect the territory of the Commonwealth. I trust that we shall always remain part of the British Empire. We can be sure that the great ocean trade routes will be kept open by the British Navy, and we can best assist the Mother Country in doing that by looking after our own coastal defence, thus relieving her of the enormous expense at present entailed by the maintenance of a Squadron in these waters. What we need are floating batteries, vessels constructed not so much for speed, or to steam long distances, as for effective gunnery, and power to withstand attack. They should be armoured, and should possess very heavy guns, being thus able to resist the heaviest ordnance, and to place the strongest barrier between our territory and those who would assail it. Then we must secure a Naval Commandant who will thoroughly understand the work which he will be requi’red to perform.
– Where would he come from ?
– -From Great Britain - the greatest naval power in the world. There are British officers who would be glad to come to Australia for the purpose of placing our naval defence upon a satisfactory footing. We must depend upon the vast and wide experience of those who have made that subject a special study, and would be prepared to do their best to secure us from attack. The Government propose, I understand, to provide for the compulsory mill.tary training of citizens during certain periods. I at first viewed compulsion in this matter with great disfavour. As I have said, I was a volunteer, and so was every male member of my family. We did our best to fit ourselves to defend our country, and we felt that others should do the same. Unfortunately, experience shows that our citizens are so careless regarding their responsibility in this direction that, even when service is paid for, it is with the greatest difficulty that they are prevailed upon to undertake this duty. We have the right to assume that this House is composed of the most public-spirited men in Australia. Its members have devoted their best years to the highest exercise of citizenship. But proportionately how small is the number of those who have qualified for the defence of their country ! The percentage Of trained men being so small in this assembly, how much smaller must it be outside ! I have thus been forced by the irresistible logic of facts to join the ranks of those who advocate some form of compulsory military training, although at its inception the idea was repugnant to me. It must be admitted to be the duty of every able-bodied citizen to prepare himself for the defence of his country. We are a democratic people, and do not wish to buy from others immunity from attack. We do not desire to hire mercenaries for our protection who may, as mercenaries have done in other times and in other countries, ultimately become our masters. Guided by the teachings of history, we must see that it is the duty of our ablebodied citizens to protect this country, and as they are not in sufficient numbers fitting themselves to do so, the State must compel them. There should be no substituted service. Every man who is physically able to fight in defence of his country should be compelled to go into camp for so many days in the year.
– Would the honorable member allow no exemptions?
– I would exempt only imbeciles, arid those physically unfit. If some honorable members had their way_, we should have in time of war only an undisciplined mob to protect Australia. But if we are to take notice of portents, the time <will come when we shall need a well-trained properly disciplined force for our protection. To this end the cadet system requires development. In this we must have the loyal co-operation and assistance of the Governments of the States, which control the educational systems of the Commonwealth. The rifle corps should be fostered, and the militia and volunteer regiments preserved. I am glad to find from the press that it is not intended to dispense with the militia, but that it is to be used, as it should be, to form the nucleus of our new force. The leaders should be efficient and energetic. No one feels more keenly than I do regarding the desirableness of employing Australian men as well as Australian material for Australian needs; but I must say in this connexion that I regret what took place at the review at Flemington the other day. It is by their work that our officers must be judged. I was one of those who some years ago approached Sir George Turner, then Premier of Victoria, and urged him to do away with the policy of importing from the Old Country all the :senior officers that we required. As the result of a great deal of persuasion and pressure he agreed to try the experiment of appointing an Australian officer as D.A.A.G. Two officers were specially singled out for the position. The idea was that one of it-hem, Colonel - now Major-General - Hoad should occupy it for five years, and that foe should be succeeded by Colonel Umphelby. Colonel Hoad took the position, but shortly afterwards the Commonwealth was established, and other arrangements were made. I must confess that when I saw the higgledy-piggledy manner in which some of our troops were marched along the straight past the saluting point at P lemington the other day, ‘I could not help wishing, for the first, and, I hope, the last time, that we had here one of those smart up-to-date energetic young officers whom we used to obtain from the Old Country. The review showed mismanagement, inefficiency, and incapacity. The responsible officer, by keeping a number of men huddled together before the saluting point, with their eyes turned to the right, for minutes at a time, showed that he was incapable either of organizing or of handling a body of men.
– Who had supreme command?
– The officer at fault was not the officer in supreme command, but the Deputy Assistant AdjutantGeneral, who, by the way, received from the press all the credit for what was described as a masterly effort. Any one who is at all familiar with the handling of troops will admit, however, that it was a wretched, miserable muddle-
– According to the press, the Prime Minister, and the Minister of Defence, have written to the officers concerned congratulating them upon the success of the review.
– - That was the review in Sydney.
– After all, the review was only ceremonial.
– The honorable’ member must recognise that such ceremonials have their uses. When one finds a body of well-trained men showing a lack of steadiness and proper discipline in taking part in a ceremonial, one is justified in assuming that those who direct them are not exercising proper control.
– What did the honorable member think of the troops in the Sydney review?
– I thought that they did remarkably good work. The review there was certainly well carried out, but as a Victorian I felt ashamed, of the display at Flemington. I do not wish to labour this point, for this is not the proper time to doso, but I will say that the senior and junior cadets set their seniors an example by the manner in which they went up to and got past the saluting point in order to make way for them. Reference has been made to-day, by way of a question to the Minister, to the absence of the, Inspector-General from Australia during a time when the whole of the Defence system of the Commonwealth will be in the melting pot. I cannot understand why the Minister should have seen fit to send away from the country, when this question is to be discussed in Parliament, our senior military officer, who has been specially trained in Australia;, and has a full appreciation of Australian sentiment. If ever there can be a time when a responsible officer should be at the elbow of the Minister, it is whilst this question is being dealt with.
– The responsible officer?
– He is the one to whom we must look, and who should be ready to come to the assistance of the Minister and Parliament in dealing with this most important question. I wish at this juncture to express the hope that more consideration will be given to those who have specially qualified themselves for service in Australia. Australian officers have been exchanged with British officers, and in the press to-day we read of a smart young. Australian officer, full of energy and enthusiasm, who was sent to England by the Government to qualify himself, and who, when he returned to Australia, was thought to know too much for his seniors, with the result that it was said that there was no work for him to do here. He has now accepted a staff appointment in the British Army and has sailed away. That state of affairs should not exist. We cannot afford to incur the expense of training men for service in Australia merely to put them out of harness directly they qualify themselves. A number of young men who have passed certain examinations at our universities in the capital cities of the various States are sent home to obtain a military training. We leave them there, or if they come back, we find some excuse for not employing them. I have in mind the case of a young ‘man who served eight years in one of the crack cavalry regiments of the Imperial service - the Inniskilling, - and rose to the rank of captain. On returning to Australia he applied to General Hutton for a position in the Australian Military Forces and was told that there were others who had greater claims for consideration. His application was refused, and to-day he finds that his profession is absolutely useless to him, notwithstanding that he was encouraged by the people of Australia to take it up. Having qualified himself for service here, he was told that there was no room for him.
– Why does not the honorable member insist upon that state of affairs being remedied?
– I am urging that consideration should be given to these officers. I recognise that the Minister of Defence has done very valuable work in his Department. He has swept away some abuses that had fastened themselves on it. He has made the Military Board a far more popular and democratic body - if I may use such terms - than it was, and has infused into it some militia blood which will prove very valuable. He has decided that the system of exchanges shall not be limited to the permanent staff - that militia and volunteer officers shall have an opportunity to secure exchanges - and he has provided in addition that non-commissioned officers shall have a chance to secure exchanges. All these are matters in respect of which the Minister deserves our hearty commendation. He has also provided a medical reserve which will include the very best talent that we have in Australia. That reserve will not cost the Commonwealth a sixpence, but it will secure for us, should we require it, at any time, a body of men who have been specially trained to do work which necessarily follows that of an army in the field. Coming now to the financial proposals of the Government, I may say at once that to my mind they are as important as is the question of defence. The two questions of finance and defence rightly go together. The future of the Commonwealth depends upon the proper defence of Australia and the proper realization of our responsibilities with regard to finance. At all times, and more particularly at what is practically the beginning of our Federal existence, due regard should be had to the necessities of the States. The
States have been accustomed to deal’1 with their revenues in the way that pleased them best, and it has been suddenly forced* upon them that there is another authority which they have to consider. Whilst I am not favorable to our giving away the rightswhich the Constitution confers upon theCommonwealth I think that the greatest care should always be exercised toavoid doing anything that would tend to embarrass the States or hinder’ their development. I feel sure that the Government has no desire to placethem in any difficulties, or to take from them anything which they cannot afford to lose. But we have certain responsibilities, and must be prepared to dischargethem, otherwise we should not be fit for” the position that we occupy.
– Does the honorablemember think that the Government scheme is satisfactory?
– I believe that it is a very liberal proposal, and that thetime is not far distant when it will becheerfully accepted by the States. I understand that a very high financial authority - the Auditor- General of New South Wales - having been asked by his Government for a report upon it, has expressed approvalof it.
– No, no.
– I am informed by a very good authority that hehas.
– The Daily Telegraph states that he has.
– Coming to another subject,. I think that the acquisitionand control of the Northern Territory by the Commonwealth is urgently necessary.
– Its acquisition on the terms of the proposed agreement?
– I do not say that. The terms upon which it should betaken over demand the most careful scrutiny and consideration j but we certainly ought to have control of the Territory. In dealing: with it, the experience we have gained inPapua will be of inestimable value to us. The Northern Territory is part of our own great Continent. It is nearer to our chief centres than is Papua, and its development and administration, I am sure, will belargely governed by our experience there. I am not wholly satisfied with our experience in Papua, and on that subject I have in mind much that I shall reserve for a more favorable opportunity. With regard to the establishment of the iron industry, I certainly hope that the efforts of the Government in that direction will be attended with more success than they have been. I trust that the unfortunate difference of opinion which has militated against a proper settlement of th’s most important question will disappear, and that we shall find honorable members uniting in an effort to secure for Australia the establishment of an industry which all must allow we cannot do without. We have in Australia deposits of iron ore that have been proved to be equal, if not superior, to any in other parts of the world, and it is to be deeply regretted that we have not yet taken advantage of them. I am not in favour of State Socialism - I am not in favour of the nationalization of industries - but, rather than that our iron fields should ‘ lie idle, I would have them developed as State concerns. I feel so strongly on this question of the development of our iron industry that I am prepared to go to almost any length in order to secure for Australia such an important factor in wealth and progress ; without it we can do practically nothing. Unless our iron fields are developed we cannot hope to progress. We ought not to have to depend year after year on supplies from other parts of the world.
– The Government have a majority on this question.
– I do not think that the Government -have a .majority in favour of nationalization. I feel certain, however, that honorable members on the other side, if they were allowed a free hand, and were not hampered and hobbled by those who sit with them, would come more resolutely and readily to the assistance of the Government in this connexion than they have done in the past.
– It is the policy of the Government, and they have a majority. Why not carry the proposal ?
– What is the policy referred to?
– The policy of extending assistance to this industry.
– The honorable member will surely give me credit for not attempting to hide anything in connexion with this matter? I alluded to the unfortunate differences of opinion which have existed in the House, and the honorable member for North Sydney must know that the first difference which prevented this industry from being established was that as between nationalizing it and assisting it by means of a bounty.
– Why did this question not come up in relation to other industries that have been assisted ?
– I am not here to answer conundrums ; but there may be a full and sufficient reply to the question asked by the honorable member. The other day I had the pleasure of visiting Thompson’s foundry, at Castlemaine, and of seeing there the largest engine yet constructed in Australia, the whole of the iron for which was obtained from Lithgow. The steel, unfortunately, had to be obtained from outside; but all the other material was locally produced.
– Steel as good as any from abroad is being made at Lithgow.
– I am glad to hear that ; and so long as we have deposits of this character, the iron from which is able to stand the test to which this iron was subjected, it is a crying shame that the industry should not be developed.
– Does the honorable member favour a bounty or a duty ?
– I do not wish to be drawn aside, but I may say I favour a bounty, because then we shall only pay as soon as the production of iron is commenced, whereas a duty will add to the cost1 whether or not there be production. Strange to say, the free-trader favours a duty as opposed to a bounty.
– That is not so.
– I know there are some free-traders in the House who have themselves told me they favour the duty. In regard to the proposed Bureau of Agriculture, we know that in the United States a similar institution has been federalized, and is worked as a great national undertaking. Those engaged in pastoral and agricultural pursuits in the United States have reaped enormous benefit from the Federal bureau, and it is time that the Commonwealth Government took a step forward in this regard. Some of the Australian States, I admit, are doing good work, though others, unfortunately, have lately relaxed their efforts. A few years ago I visited the agricultural laboratory in Queensland, and was much interested in the magnificent work there carried on under Mr. Pounds. Queensland, in my opinion, is likely to be the finest State in the Union, offering the bestinducements in these States to those who desire to take up agricultural and pastoral pursuits ; but it unfortunately is a fact that the laboratory and its accompaniments, as I found to my regret on a recent visit, are not in anything like the efficient state they were in years ago.
Colonel Foxton. - That has been rectified.
– I am glad to hear it, because it is a short-sighted policy to allow such work to fall into arrear, or out of the front rank. Such work must be systematized, and made more uniform, in order that the whole of Australia may benefit; and that system and uniformity can be achieved only by the Federal authority. The question of immigration has, unfortunately, been made the sport of parties in the past, and has been exploited by notorietyhunting individuals. From day to day we have experience of reckless misstatements made by those to whom I have just referred ; and I regret that such an important and vital question should have been dealt with in such a fashion. Men have not hesitated to stoop to misrepresentation in order to secure objects which, no doubt, were thought admirable. There should be an attempt to arrive at a proper agreement as between States and Commonwealth, in order to secure for Australia a desirable stream of white immigrants who would settle here under our conditions and live up to our standard. The reference to electoral law amendment means, I presume, that the Government desire there should be a majority representation in this chamber; and I sincerely hope that the session will not close until we have placed on the statute-book an effective measure to provide that every member in this and another place shall represent a majority, and not, as is the case in some instances, a minority of the electors. Time will not permit of a discussion of other important matters mentioned in His Excellency’s speech, but there is a subject not mentioned there which I desire to bring under the notice of the Government. The present position in relation to the Friendly Societies Acts of Australia is most unsatisfactory. In the various States there are different systems and conditions ; and the result is want of uniformity most prejudicial to development of these organizations. I believe that the Government could find time to consider the question of federalizing these laws.
– We have no power.
– Leave well alone. We are well enough off in Queensland.
– I may tell the honorable member that the Friendly Societies Act in Victoria is all in the direction of stability, and there is no chance of insolvency.
– Neither is there in Queensland.
– But the honorable member for Maranoa implied that he did not desire to have the Victorian Acts operating in Queensland.
– No; because they are too severe.
– If the Queensland Act is better than that of Victoria, there is no reason why the former should not become the Federal Act. At any rate, I should prefer the Queensland Act to the present unsatisfactory state of affairs, where a member of a friendly society, moving from one State to another, finds himself under altogether different conditions in regard to payment and so forth, although he continues to belong to the same society. Uniformity can be secured only by federalizing the Acts ; and if the States were approached, I think they would readily hand over to the Commonwealth the right to deal with the question. We have had an indication from the reputed leader of the Opposition of an alteration of the relations of parties. He has informed us that he and the deputy leader of the Opposition are prepared to stand aside if honorable members of the Opposition corner will”come into the parlour.” Of course, whether those corner members respond to the invitationor not is their own affair, and they would probably consider it impertinent on my part to offer any suggestion. The announcement has been made publicly, and its publicity, no doubt, was intended. The right honorable member stated that he was prepared to lay down his leadership. I do not think that his statement affected any one very much. But I do think that if the deputy leader of the Opposition were to retire from the position that he has occupied, honorable members opposite would lose one who has shown himself to be a very capable leader indeed - one who has been most self-sacrificing in his devotion to his duties, and of whom any party might very justly be proud. If the honorable member for Parramatta were permitted to retire from the active leadership of the Opposition, the event would occasion a distinct loss to his party.
– May he long continue to hold that position !
– The honorable member wants honorable members here to go over to the Ministerial side.
– I am just as keenly in favour of majority rule as any one can be; and I may point out that there is room on this side of the chamber for several honorable members who now crowd the corner benches opposite. I have had close personal relationships with some of them, and know that their politics are liberal. I point out to them that there is nothing whatever in the whole of the Governor-General’s speech - not one single proposition - which they could not heartily support.
– Especially the new protection policy !
– I believe that some of them will support the new protection policy.
– Not they ! They are of no use to me, as protectionists, at all events.
– I believe that that policy is so wise, so necessary, and so fair that many honorable members who sit in the Opposition corner cannot do other than heartily support it. There is not, I believe, a single free-trader sitting in that corner. They all call themselves good protectionists. I point out to them again that there is not an item in the Governor- General’s speech with which they can reasonably quarrel.
– The honorable member’s appeal is becoming quite irresistible.
– I am not appealing to my honorable friends for selfish reasons, because I recognise that were they to come over here, my own position would be affected. As a member of a very small party, I necessarily bulk more largely in the eyes of my leader than I should do if it were added to by some of the honorable members, who now sit in the Opposition corner, crossing over to this side. Probably, Ishould not have been asked to second the address had the party been more numerous ; but the Government have so few direct supporters, and have been so long in office, that every member of the party has in turn been called upon to occupy this position. The supporters of the Ministry are so good in quality, however, that I believe the Prime Minister intends to make the same round again, talcing them in order on future occasions; so that I look forward with a certain amount of trepidation to seconding an AddressinReply, under similar circumstances, about seven years hence ! I desire to thank honorable members very heartily for the consideration which they have extended to me. I feel that I do not altogether deserve it, though I believe that I know what is the right thing to say under the circumstances. I have never been placed in this position before. I have always got out of undertaking to move or second an Address-in-Reply, but, unfortunately, on this occasion, I was caught “ napping.” I have, however, undertaken the duty with a great deal of pleasure, because I believe that legislation is foreshadowed in the Speech which promises well for Australia ; and, after all, to secure that end should be the central idea animating all honorable members.
– The very short speech of the GovernorGeneral, with the very long and copious notes made upon it by the mover and seconder of the Address - those two old parliamentary hands - contain sufficient food for reflection till to-morrow. I therefore ask for the usual adjournment.
– I had hoped, after the excellent speech of the mover and the seconder, that there would be no reason for further debate ; but, if the deputy leader of the Opposition desires an adjournment, I shall consent.
Debate (on motion by Mr. Joseph Cook) adjourned.
Motion (by Mr. Deakin) agreed to -
That, until otherwise ordered, this House shall meet for the dispatch of business at 3 o’clock on each Tuesday afternoon ; at half-past 2 o’clock on each Wednesday and Thursday afternoon ; and at half-past 10 o’clock on each Friday morning.
– I desire to detain the House for a few moments before we separate with a few remarks on a motion which all will regard as a very appropriate one at this juncture. The substitution of a new Governor-General for the Governor- General whom we have known so long isan event in itself. But this House being in recess while the retiring Governor-General, Lord Northcote, and Lady Northcote were departing, this is therefore the first opportunity we have had to express in a fitting manner our sense of the obligations which I am sure we all feel towards them. Under these circumstances, I ask the House to adopt the brief address which I will read. The reason for submitting it at once is not only that this is the first occasion on which we have had an opportunity of expressing ourselves, but also because the address^ - which has been ‘ unanimously adopted by the Senate this afternoon - when agreed to by this House, can be transmitted to-night - if the President of the Senate and Mr. Speaker will be good enough ‘ to cause it to be telegraphed - to Thursday Island, where, to-morrow morning, it will reach Lord and Lady Northcote at the last outpost of Australia. I move -
That the following address to Lord Northcote, the late Governor-General, be agreed to by this House : -
To the Right Honorable Henry Stafford, Lord Northcote :
We, the Members of the House of Representatives in Parliament assembled, desire to express to Your Lordship our grateful recognition of the judgment and ability, zeal, and courtesy, with which as Governor-General of Australia you devoted yourself unremittingly to the dutieand opportunities of your exalted office.
In your intimate association with both Houses of Parliament your relations have been at all times cordial, constitutional, and considerate of their great responsibilities.
You have brought to bear in the exercise of your duties an exceptional knowledge of the vast territory and scattered population of the Commonwealth, in gaining which no considerations of personal convenience have been permitted to enter.
The unsparing kindness and generosity on the part of Her Excellency and yourself in promoting all movements for charity or culture, the encouragement of local aptitudes, and the development of a patriotic spirit, are universally acknowledged.
We desire to add a further assurance to those already so freely and widely bestowed of the high value and permanent influence of your and Lady Northcote’s many activities, and of the abiding affection, esteem) and gratitude of the people of Australia.
The few words in which our farewell is expressed are, of course inadequate to convey a tithe of that we would desire to have expressed on such an occasion. As I have been privileged already on two occasions to express on my own behalf and that of my colleagues our feelings towards Lord and Lady Northcote, I shall not trespass upon the House this afternoon ; although if it were opportune to do so, I could say much more without repeating anything that I have said before. From1 personal knowledge of them,
I know that they were not only content todo, but anxious to do a very great dealamong us without receiving any publicrecognition whatever. With what Lord and Lady Northcote have done, officially, thepublic are generally acquainted, but thealmost innumerable instances in which they have personally exceeded the official dutiesof their position, bv acts of kindness, of forethought, or of assistance to those in want or suffering, are more than we car* count. We also know that it was their desire to leave Australia as quietly and with as little display as possible. That could not be permitted. Fortunately for us the people took it out of our hands, and out of their hands, too. The consequence has been that in every State irc which they have recently appeared therehas been an outbreak of affection and re- gard such as I think has never been witnessed in Australia - at all events, I am sure that it has not been witnessed upon: such a universal scale. There is a great deal that has not yet been said of then* which need not be phrased because it isknown to all. We speak to-night for our constituents - for the whole community as well as for the whole Parliament - when wc transmit this address. Lord and Lady Northcote have been personally known to, and have personally known, every member of both Houses of this Parliament - every member who now holds a seat in it, and every one who has held a seat in it during their sojourn amongst us. They have known, as well, all those who were associated with them in the discharge of their many duties. We are, therefore, peculiarly competent to speak” from our own acquaintance with their Excellencies as well as from our general knowledge of what they have achieved in this country. I have great pleasure in moving the adoption of art address which in no way attempts to recite all their claims on our affectionate regard.
– It will be necessary to first obtain the concurrence of the House to the submission of the motion without notice. Is it the pleasure of honorable members that the Prime Minister have leave to- submit the motion, without notice?
Honorable Members. - Hear, hear.
– It is not necessary to add to the words already uttered by “the Prime Minister in order to- express our entire concurrence in the happily-chosen address which has been proposed by him. As one who has known Lord Northcote during his residence here - as mosthonorable members have done - what impressed me more than anything elsewas the quiet and unostentatious way in which he so efficiently discharged his duties. I have never seen a man more devoted to his duties and who discharged them with less desire for personal popularity or personal favour. The lame thing may be said of Lady North- cote. They have done their duty here, and done it right nobly. We expected, of course, when they came, that they would discharge their duties with thorough efficiency, coming as they did, from a noble family, and bringing with them high traditions of devoted service to the State. May I say, in a word, that I believe Lord Northcote has worthily honoured those traditions. I will only add that in leaving Australia their Excellencies have, in the language of one newspaper which I read, “ blazed a track for all who. may follow “-a track which, if followed, will lead to success and to usefulness. We shall follow Lord and Lady Northcote with our good wishes. We trust that prosperous gales will follow them in their journey, and we all join in wishing them long continued prosperity in whatever part of the world they may chance to reside. By discharging their duties here in the way that they have done, they added lustre to an already honoured name, and I think it is only fitting that we should make a record of their achievement in the way proposed by the Prime Minister.
.-I am pleased to have an opportunity to add a word to the excellent speechof the Prime Minister in proposing that this House should convey its thanks - and, indeed, the thanks of the community- to Lord and Lady Northcote before they finally leave Australia. I should just like to say that Lord and Lady Northcote are persons who know exactly how to appraise appreciation of their services. They are vice-regal representatives with whom we could talk freely. Speaking of the Governor-General himself, I do not think that I have ever met a shrewder man or one who exhibited less ostentation in the discharge of his high and important duties. He has had a long experience of every constitutional position under the British Crown, and he has acquitted himself so well that those who may hereafter fill the distinguished office of Governor-General of the Commonwealth will need to be upon their guard lest they fall short of the high standard which he has set up. Lord and Lady Northcote, by their impartiality, their tact, and their friendly feeling towards every section of the community, have - as the Prime Minister has said - won the hearts of the people, in addition to meriting the thanks of the Crown who sent them here. Would it be out of place to suggest that a copy of this address should be transmitted, not only to Lord and Lady Northcote before they finally pass from our shores, but also to the King, in order that we may mark our appreciation of the. services which they have rendered, not merely to the Commonwealth, but also to the Empire.
– That will be done.
– The suggestion was made to me, and, as I thought it was a very proper one, I have pleasure in giving publicity to it. If ever a public servant was assisted by his helpmate, Lord Northcote was efficiently helped. The few opportunities that I had of meeting their Excellencies convinced me that they are the last persons in the world who would wish for a word of praise for their conduct. Their actions were always prompted by a sense of public duty and by a desire to further the best interests of the Empire of which we form a part.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
– May I ask, Mr. Speaker, that you will be good enough, acting in conjunction with the President of the Senate, to arrange for the transmission of a copy of the address by telegraph to Lord and Lady Northcote at Thursday Island ?
– That will be done.
House adjourned at 5.24 p.m.
Cite as: Australia, House of Representatives, Debates, 16 September 1908, viewed 22 October 2017, <http://historichansard.net/hofreps/1908/19080916_reps_3_47/>.