10 March 1926

10th Parliament · 1st Session

The President (Senator the Hon. T. Givens) took the chair at 3 p.m., and read prayers.

page 1414



  1. Are there any restrictions on the importation of German dyes into Australia?
  2. If so, what are the restrictions?
  3. Have any licences been issued in Australia for the importation of German dyes?
  4. If so, on what grounds?
  5. What are the names of such dyes, and what are the respective quantities involved?
  6. What opportunities are given to English manufacturers to rebut German representations that these dyes are licensable.
  7. In the event of a licence to import German dyes being granted in Australia, what publicity is given to enable simultaneous importation to be made from other countries competing with Germany?

I am now able to furnish, the honorable senator with the following information : -


The importation of foreign dyes is prohibited by proclamation dated 26th February, 1019, except .by permission of the Minister of State for Trade and Customs. Before such consent is given, the Minister satisfies himself that there are no similar dyes .of British origin available in commercial quantities.


On the ground that no British substitutes were available, or that conclusive proof of the fact was not available at the time the application to import the German dye was lodged.

– This would entail an inquiry into transactions extending over a period of seven years, and it is considered that the work involved is not justified. The quantity involved, however, would be small.

Information . as to the names of foreign dyes that are permitted to be imported into the United Kingdom is received regularly from the Board of Trade Dye-stuffs Committee, and in instances where the available information is not conclusive reference is made to the Board of Trade through the High Commissioner’s Office by cablegram or letter, according to the urgency of the case. Samples are forwarded for purposes of comparison where necessary. Australian agents for English dyes are also consulted wherever possible.

No such action is taken.

page 1415



Senator THOMAS:

– Can the Minister for Home and Territories inform me whether it is a fact that intoxicating liquors are sold to guests at the hotels in Canberra; if so, by whose authority?

Senator PEARCE:
Minister of Home and Territories · WESTERN AUSTRALIA · NAT

– As the honorable senator intimated to me that he intended to ask this question, I at once had the following telegram sent to the Federal Capital Commission -

Following question to be asked in Parliament to-morrow begins : “ Is it fact that intoxicating liquors sold to guests at hotels, Canberra. If so, by whose authority ? “ Please telegraph information urgently to enable Minister to reply.

The following reply was received: -

Your telegram to-day; no intoxicating liquor has been sold by Hotel Canberra.

Honorable Senators.- Hear, hear !

page 1415


Formal Adjournment Motion

The PRESIDENT (Senator the Hon.

  1. Givens). - I have received from Senator Needham an intimation that he desires to move the adjournment of the Senate until 10 a.m. to-morrow, in order to discuss a matter of .urgent public importance, namely, “ The construction of two wooden vessels by Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh.”

Senator NEEDHAM (Western Aus tralia) T3.21. - I move -

That the Senate, at its rising, adjourn until 10 a.m. to-morrow.

Four honorable senators having risen in their -places in support of the motion,

Senator NEEDHAM:

– I wish to discuss matters relating to the building of two wooden vessels by Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh. The circumstances that led to the making of the contract for building these vessels were that’ during 1917 there was a world shortage of shipping, in consequence of which the Commonwealth Government let contracts for the building of 24 vessels, six of which were to be built by Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh. The armistice was signed on. 11th November, 1918, and on the declaration of peace it was found that all these vessels would not be required. The Government thereupon decided to cancel the contracts and to compensate the contractors. Of the six vessels which Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh had undertaken to build four had not been started, and, as compensation for the loss of the work of building them, the company was paid a total amount of £52,000, or £13,000 for each vessel. It wished to> complete the two upon which it was working, the Braeside and the Burnside rather than to be paid compensation for immediately terminating the work. In the course of the construction of the vessels, Messrs. Burns, Philp and Company, Limited contracted to buy the Braeside, but when the ship was launched it was found to be unseaworthy, and Lloyds refused to issue a certificatefor it. Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh then asked to be relieved of their contract. At the suggestion of the firm, the whole matter was referred to the Public Works Committee for inquiry and report, the company agreeing to abide by the decision of the committee as to what compensation, if any should be paid. The Public Works Committee reported on the matter on the 6th April, 1921. Included in its report is a letter which Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh sent to the Prime Minister’s Department in regard to the matter, the concluding paragraphs of which read -

Finally it is suggested for consideration that if the Government can see its way clear to relieve us of our contract, we would urge that the matter be referred to the Parliamentary Public Works Committee, with a viewto their making a report on the whole position, and considering the question of the amount of compensation which might be allowed us.

If the Government can see its way clear to meet our request, we hereby undertake to abide by the decision of the Public Works Committee, whatever it may be.

During the inquiry it was discovered that there was a certain amount of hogging in the Braeside. On this subject, thu committee reported as follows: -

Consideration was given to the question of -the hogging of the Braeside, which first gave rise to the -many doubts as to her classification by Lloyd’s. Evidence was adduced to show -that most wooden vessels, -particularly those of large size, hog more or less, and that, as a general rule, such hogging cannot be said Co impair their seaworthiness. The Braeside, however, -was built -with a camber or sag of i) indies, and subsequent to her launch was discovered te have a bog of approximately 23 inches, or alteration ki form to the extent of 32 inches, .and no instance was cited to the committee of any new vessel having hogged to that extent. ‘However, the latest report received shows that on being [placed in dry dock on the 22nd December, 1920, the hog had increased to 281 inches - a total alteration of -form of 375 inches. Inquiries were made to discover the reason the Braeside hogged, and after a careful consideration of -Ohe opinions offered by various witnesses, the committee is satisfied that there have been several contributory causes.


– The honorable senator might explain what is meant by “hogging.”

Senator NEEDHAM:

– No explanation is given ‘by the committee ; but I understand that it means an unevenness in the frame and in the keel.

Senator Kingsmill:

– lt means convexity.

Sentaor NEEDHAM. - I do not Mow what is the technical term for .hogging, hut it certainly affects the seaworthiness of a vessel, and renders it dangerous to human life. In .paragraph ,34, the committee, in referring to the dummy bolts used in the Braeside, reported -

After careful inquiries, however, two of the witnesses, on being requested, undertook io point out to the committee on the ships the places where dummy bolts had been inserted. These fastenings were all marked in the presence of the committee, and electrical tests made by officers of the’ Ship Construction Branch and by the committee’s expert (Mr. Farquhar) showed that the whole of the fastenings marked by one man and GO per cent, of the fastenings marked by the other man, which purported to be through fastenings, were, as a matter ,of fact, not through fasten in ga.

Senator Foll:

– The honorable senator might explain how the dummy bolts were used.

Senator NEEDHAM:

– Bolts should go right through from the exterior to the interior of the hull, and be properly clinched, so as to make the vessel watertight. It was found that these dummy bolts did not go right through. This fault further affected the seaworthiness of the vessel. I come now to the recommendation of the .committee, .upon which Messrs. Kidman .and Mayoh were willing to stake their fate. They declared, it will be remembered, that they were prepared to abide by the decision of the committee. This is the recommendation of that body -

Mr. MATHEWS moved: That, in the opinion of the .committee, it is doubtful, even with the expenditure of an unwarrantable sum of money, tha-t the ships could be made seaworthy.

Seconded by Senator -FOLL.

The committee divided .on the motion - Axes, 7. No, 1.

Later -the report states -

Mr. MOLONEY moved.: That .the committee, after careful consideration of the reference submitted to it, is of -opinion that the request of the contractors be not complied with.

Seconded by ‘Senator ‘NEWLAND.

The committee divided on the motion - Ayes, 7. No, 1.

The report is dated the -6bn April, .1921. It is now the 10th March, 1926, so five years have elapsed since the presentation of the report to Parliament, and up to the present Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh nave not satisfied the award given against them. Time after time questions have been asked by honorable members in another place, and honorable senators in

*Kidman-Mayoh* [10 March, 1926.] *Shipbuilding Contract.* 1417 this chamber, as to what steps the Government proposed to take to compel Messrs. Kidman and. Mayoh to face and fulfil their responsibilities. On the 4th September, 1925, **Mr. Gregory,** in another place, questioned the Government, and **Sir Littleton** Groom, then AttorneyGeneral, replied as f ollows : - >I can assure the honorable member that the Department has not been responsible for the delay. We have pressed for finality, but the other party has raised legal objections at every stage. It finally sought leave to appeal to the Privy Council, but that leave having been refused, the case now stands on appeal in our own courts; This proves, either that the Government has not been sincere in pressing for settlement, or that Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh have taken advantage of every opportunity to evade their legal responsibilities. This year I asked a series of questions on the same subject in this form - {: type="1" start="1"} 0. Have Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh received *?114,000* progress payment for the construction of the wooden vessels which w?re condemned ? 1. Has the Government collected any money from Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh in connexion with those vessels? 2. If so, how much? 3. If not, is it the intention of the Government to take action in order to enforce repayments, and of what amounts? 4. Does the Government intend to take any action against Kidman andMayoh for building vessels that were not according to plans and specifications ? **Senator Pearce** replied as follows: {: type="1" start="1"} 0. Progress payments amounting to *?114,000* were made to Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh in connexion with the construction of wooden vessels. 2, 3, and 4. No moneys have been collected from Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh, but the Government has taken action to enforce payment of the award of the arbitrator **(Sir Murk Sheldon)** amounting' to *?75,665,* with costs. 1. The finding of the arbitrator covered all matters in dispute between the Government and Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh, and it is not proposed therefore to take action on the lines suggested by the honorable senator. The Minister's reply showed that Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh had received *?114,000* as progress payments on the construction of these two wooden vessels. They should not have received a penny on that account. If I entered into a contract for the building of a house, which afterwards was condemned by the health authorities as unfit for human habitation, I could not claim payment. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- In the case of Kidman and Mayoh, progress payments were made before the completion of the vessels, and before their condemnation. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- Having regard to the kind of vessels constructed, these progress payments should not have been made. But I am not cavilling at that now. What I am concerned about, and what Parliament should be concerned about, too, is the non-payment by Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh of the amount due to the Commonwealth Government as determined by **Sir Mark** Sheldon, who was called in as an arbitrator. On the 4th instant, I asked - {: type="1" start="1"} 0. Have Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh yet paid the *?75,665,* with costs - the award arrivedat by the arbitrator, **Sir Mark** Sheldon, in connexion with the construction of wooden vessels which were condemned? 1. If not, has the Government taken action to recover such amount? 2. If the Government has taken such action, what is the nature of the action taken? 3. If no action has yet been taken, when does the Government intend to do so, and what will be the nature of such action? **Senator Pearce** replied as follows : {: type="1" start="1"} 0. No. 1. Yes. 2. Instructions have been issued to the Commonwealth Crown Solicitor to enforce judgment. 3. See answer to No. 3. On the 4th March, 1926, five years after the Public Works Committee had decided against Messes. Kidman and Mayoh, we were informed that the Commonwealth Crown Solicitor had been instructed to take steps to enforce the judgment. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- It would be interesting to know whatthe costs amount to now. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -I should like to know that. I propose to quote' the award given by **Sir Mark** Sheldon.. {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator Drake-Brockman: -- Is it not a fact that legal proceedings are pending? {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- That may be so; but I do not think that any proceedings have been taken in the courts since **Sir Mark** Sheldon gave his award. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator Pearce: -- Proceedings have been taken since then. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- If that is the ease, I should like to know what they are, and when they are likely to be concluded. 1418 *Kidman-Mayoh[SENATE.] Shipbuilding Contract.* **Sir Mark** Sheldon gave his award on the 30th June, . 1922, in the following terms : - >I award and determine that: - > >The Commonwealth is entitled to refuse to accept delivery of the *Braeside* and *Burnside.* > >The sum of Seventy-five thousand six hundred and sixty-five pounds (£75,665) is due by the said Sidney Kidman, Joseph Mayoh and Arthur Mayoh to the Commonwealth of Australia; and I direct that the said sum of Seventy-five thousand six hundred and sixty-five pounds be paid by Sidney Kidman, Joseph Mayoh, and Arthur Mayoh to the Commonwealth of Australia. > >And I further award that the said Sidney Kidman, Joseph Mayoh, and Arthur Mayoh shall bear and pay their own costs of, and attending the said arbitration, and the said Sidney Kidman, Joseph Mayoh, and Arthur Mayoh shall pay to the said Commonwealth of Australia its costs of, and attending the said arbitration; and the said Sidney Kidman,Joseph Mayoh, and Arthur Mayoh shall pay the costs of this my award. > >And I determine the costs of the said Commonwealth to amount to the sum of Six hundred and seventy-six pounds seven shillings (£676 7s.). > >And I determine my costs of this award at the sum of Two hundred and fifteen pounds five shillings and sixpence (£215 5s. 6d.). I am now advised that other proceedings are being taken. But why should they have lasted so long? {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator Drake-Brockman: -- The delay has occurred in the ordinary course of legal procedure. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- If persons in less affluent circumstances than Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh owed the Commonwealth £75,000, the Government would have compelled them long ago to pay it. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh stated definitely that they would abide by the decision of the arbitrator. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- That is the point I wish to make. In the first place, they said that they would abide by the decision of the Public Works Committee. But the decision having been given, they refused to abide by it, legal proceedings intervened, and the matter was then referred to the arbitration of **Sir Mark** Sheldon. As Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh were presumably parties to the proceedings before **Sir Mark** Sheldon, I should imagine they would abide by his decision; but they have ignored both the decision of a responsible committee of this Parliament, and the award of an arbitrator. Since the construction of these vessels commenced in 1919 - faults were soon discovered in them - seven years have elapsed, and still the Commonwealth Government is minus the amount awarded to it by an independent arbitrator. I do not wish to occupy the time of the Senate any further. I have called attention to this matter publicly in order to obtain from the right honorable the Leader of the Senate a statement of the position of the Commonwealth Government, and an indication of how much longer it will be before Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh meet their legal responsibilities. If, as a citizen of Australia, I were haled before a small debts court and judgment were given against me for a certain sum., in the event of my failure to pay the amount very speedily, my goods and chattels would be distrained on. {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator Drake-Brockman: -- Not if the honorable senator obtained a stay of execution pending appeal to a higher count. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- I should not have the money to enable me to lodge an appeal. {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator Drake-Brockman: -- These people had the money to do so. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- If I evaded my duties as a citizen by not paying my income tax, after the period of grace allowed, the Commissioner of Taxation would take steps to recover the amount due by me. {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator Drake-Brockman: -- Is that not one of the laws the honorable senator would be prepared to defy? {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- I hope that I shall always have a sufficient income on which to have to pay income tax. I need not elaborate this matter further. The history of the Kidman-Mayoh contract is well known. Strange to say, **Sir Sidney** Kidman, a member of this firm, also owes land tax to the Commonwealth Commissioner of Taxation. He has been able to defy the Government not only in respect of the payment of land tax, but also in connexion with the liability he has incurred in the building of wooden ships. He appears to be able to drive a coach and four through any law we pass. I have brought this matter forward in order that **Senator Pearce** may tell us where the Commonwealth stands, and when the Government will be paid the amount of the award determined by **Sir Mark** Sheldon. {: #subdebate-2-0-s1 .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE:
Minister for Home and Territories · Western Australia · NAT -- I do not know what object **Senator Needham** has in moving this motion for adjournment, unless it is to obtain a statement of the causes which have led up to the delay in the proceedings against Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh. Some of his remarks, however, would lead one to believe that he has a more sinister purpose in view. For instance, he says that not one penny should have been paid in progress payments, implying that the Commonwealth did something improper in making these payments. Had the honorable member taken the trouble to make inquiries, he would have known that it was agreed in the contract for the building of these wooden vessels that progress payments should be made on the certificate of the officer who was inspecting the work, and that they were so made. Therefore no charge .can be laid against the Government for having made these progress payments. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- Was the inspector a Commonwealth official? {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- He was, and he committed suicide while the inquiry was in progress. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE: -- No progress payments were made after the disclosures in the report of the Public Works Committee. The honorable senator, however, left the impression that the progress payments were continued, notwithstanding the fact that the Commonwealth Government knew that the vessels were_ defective. That the honorable senator had a sinister motive was further indicated by his statement that the Commonwealth Crown Solicitor had been instructed now - five, years after the presentation of the Public Works Committee's report - to take action. The suggestion was that, despite the presentation of the committee's report, the Commonwealth had done nothing to assert its rights in this matter, and that only now, in March, 1926 - to use the honorable senator's own words - had the Commonwealth given any instructions to the Crown Solicitor. That is an entirely unwarranted sugges tion. The fact is that the Government has at various times taken steps to assert its rights. The honorable senator knows quite well, although he did not tell the Senate so, that legal proceedings have been instituted by Kidman and Mayoh, and also by the Commonwealth; the latter took proceedings to enforce the payment of these amounts, and Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh went to law for the purpose of preventing enforcement of pay-, ment. The honorable senator asked why the proceedings had extended over, so long a period. Echo answers, "Why?" Certainly not because of any action of the Commonwealth, although that is the suggestion in the interrogation. The Commonwealth did not prompt Kidman and Mayoh to take these proceedings, and it was neither at .the wish, nor with the consent, of the Commonwealth, that they were taken. It was the desire of the Government to have the matter cleared up and the money paid. Everything possible has been done by the Government to that end. But Kidman and Mayoh have their rights, just as any other individual, to appeal to the courts of the land. They have appealed from the Supreme Court to the Full Court, from the Full Court to the High Court, and from the High Court to the Privy Council. They have exhausted every legal means at their disposal to prevent the Commonwealth from recovering the money due. The Commonwealth could not deprive them of their right to appeal to the courts. .Does the honorable senator suggest that the Government should have made an effort to prevent them from exercising their right of appeal? Upon the question as to whether they were ' ' playing the game ' ' by doing so, after having agreed to the verdict of the arbitrator, we can all, of course, pass judgment: but the Commonwealth is not responsible, if they have not " played the game." Therefore, the query as to why the proceedings have lasted so long can be answered by the honorable senator himself, if he cares to study the history of the case. Since he has raised this matter, I consider it desirable to place that history on record in *Hansard.* I shall excise as much extraneous matter as possible. The facts of the case are as follow : - >On the 29th October, 1920, on the motion of **Mr. Hughes,** a resolution was passed by the 1420 *Kidman-Mayoh* [SENATE.] *Shipbuilding Contract.* > >House of Representatives that the following matterbe referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works for investigation and report: - " The advisability of complying with the request of Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh to be relieved of the obligation to complete the contract entered into by them on the 4th August, 1010, to build two wooden vessels for the Commonwealth, and the conditions upon which such relief, if deemed desirable, should be granted." > >From the interim report of this committee, dated 31st December, 1920, it appears that in July, 1918, the Commonwealth entered into a contract with Kidman and Mayoh for the construction of six wooden vessels of a deadweight capacity of about 2,600 tons each. > >After the signing of the Armistice, the Commonwealth Government decided to cancel the wooden shipbuilding contracts with Kidman and Mayoh and other contractors. Kidman and Mayoh, however, had made considerable progress with one ship and fair progress with another, and at their request, on the 4th August, 1919, the Commonwealth made a further agreement with them to build these two vessels at a cost of £26 per ton. > >One of the conditions of the contract was that the ships were to be built in all respects to Lloyd's highest class, and to the requirements of the Navigation Act, and delivery was not to be tendered or accepted until Lloyd's and navigation certificates had been delivered. > >In April, 1920, one of the vessels (the *Braeside)* was launched, and was found to be hogged to the extent of about 23 metres. She was then docked and an effort was made to strengthen her, but on refloating it was found that the hog had not materially diminished, and because of this, and because some of the fastenings were not in accordance with Lloyd's rules, the Australian representative of Lloyd's had refused a first-class certificate. > >The contractors had thereupon asked to be relieved of their contract, and suggested that, to avoid expensive legal or arbitration proceedings, the matter should be referred to the Public Works Committee for investigation and report, and agreed to abide by the committee's decision. > >The comimittee had inspected both vessels and taken evidence, and was satisfied that the ships had not been constructed in conformity with approved plans and specifications and Lloyd's rules, and that there had been such a serious departure from these that the ships were not seaworthy. They thought it doubtful whether the vessels could be made seaworthy even by the expenditure of an unwarrantable sum of money, and thought thatunder no circumstances should they be taken over by the Commonwealth. They recommended that the request of the contractors be not complied with. > >On the 26th January, 1921, Messrs. Blake andRiggall wrote to the Prime Minister criticizing the report of the committee, but accepted the decision that their request to be relieved from the contract be not complied with, and announced that they must now take their stand upon the contract. > >They claimed that progress certificates had been given up to a total of £164,399, of which only £106,193 had been paid, leaving a balance due to the contractors of £53,206 and £5,000 held in reserve. They claimed that they should now be paid this sum and a fair sum for the material and labourput into the ships. > >On. the 2nd April, 1921, **Mr. Poynton,** Minister in charge of the Ship Construction Branch, gave notice to the contractors that, in view of the fact that the time for delivery of the first vessel had long expired, that time was the essence of the contract, that construction had not been in accordance withthe contracts, and that it was now considered impossible for the contractors to carry out the contracts, the Commonwealth had no option but to treat the contracts as having been discharged by breach. > >The letter gave formal notice that, from the date of the letter the Commonwealth treated the contracts as discharged *by* the contractors' default, and claimed damages to the extent of the moneys paid to the contractors by the Commonwealth, namely, £114,320 7s. 9d. On payment of this sum, the vessels would be considered tobe the property of the contractors, notwithstanding the provision in the contract under which they were the property of the Commonwealth. > >On investigation of the facts, it appeared that the constraction was not only faulty, but, apparently, in some respects, fraudulent, there being many places in which dummy bolts, not going through the wood or being clinched, had been inserted where through bolts were specified. > >Messrs. Blake andRiggall made certain suggestions for settlement on a general basis that the contractors should be relieved from any loss under the contract. > >The Solicitor-General's view of a settlement that might possibly be entertained was one under which the Commonwealth should be relieved of loss, or should at least be put in the same position as it would have been in if the contracts for all six ships had been cancelled in 1919. > >The contractors' contention thus was that a large sum of money should be paid to them, and the Commonwealth claimed that a large sum of money should! be paid to it. No basis for settlement was found, and on the 16th June, 1921, the Ship Construction Branch were informed by the Attorney-General's Department that the matter had been placed in the hands of the CommonwealthCrown Solicitor for necessary action. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- On what date was that information given? {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE: -- On the 16th June, 1921 - not 1926, as suggested by **Senator Needham.** {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- I quoted the Minister's own words. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE: -- The honorable senator referred to the last action taken; *Kidman-Mayoh* [10 March, 1926.] *Shipbuilding Contract.* 1421 but instructions were issued to the Crown Solicitor in 1921. On 10th November, 1921, Messrs. Blake and Riggall made suggestions for the matterbeing submitted to arbitration. This was eventually agreed to by the Prime Minister, and it was agreed that **Mr. Warren** Kerr, if available, would be an acceptable arbitrator. **Mr. Kerr** proved not to bo available; and on 3rd May Messrs. Blake and Riggall were notified that the Prime Minister would agree to the matter being submitted to the arbitration of **Mr. Mark** Sheldon, of Sydney, as sole arbitrator. This was agreed to, and **Mr. Sheldon** agreed to act, but pointed out that he was due to leave for America on 22nd June, and, therefore, expedition was necessary. A submission was prepared, and it was arranged that the matter should be dealt with expeditiously, all documentary evidence being made available to the arbitrator. The Commonwealth law officers made every endeavour to expedite the hearing of the arbitration, but had reason to think that the preliminary proceedings wore being unduly prolonged by the other side. Eventually a reference was agreed upon, underwhich the matters in dispute were: - {: type="1" start="1"} 0. Whether the Commonwealth is entitled to refuse to accept delivery of the *Braeside* and *Burnside;* 1. What sums of money, if any, are due by either of the parties to the other in respect of the said original and further contract, whether by way of damages for breach or nonperformance of the said contracts, or return of moneys paid thereunder, or otherwise. The arbitrator was empowered to admit evidence without regard to Rules of Evidence, and to inform his mind as he deemed it advisable. It was also provided that the arbitrator should not be bound to state a case for the opinion of court at the request of the parties. The hearing began on the 13th June in Sydney. The arbitrator heard evidence, perused the documents, inspected the ships, and the hearing was concluded on the 21st June. On the 15th July, the arbitrator's award was received. It was to the following effect: - {: type="1" start="1"} 0. The Commonwealth was entitled to refuse to accept delivery of both vessels. 1. £75,665 found due by contractors to the Commonwealth and directed to be paid. 3: Contractors to pay their own costs of the arbitration and the Commonwealth's costs of arbitration, and costs of award. 2. Coats of Commonwealth, assessed at £676. 3. Costs of award assessed at £215. The contractors did not comply with the terms of the award, but on the 21st July, 1922, wrote, talcing exception to its terms. In September and October they made several requests to the Commonwealth to concur in re mitting the award to the arbitrator for reconsideration and for reference to the Supreme Court of questions as to the legal interpretation of the contracts. These requests were refused. In May, 1923, the contractors moved the Supreme Court for an order that the award be set aside or remitted to the arbitrator. This was dismissed with costs. On the 8th June, 1923, the Commonwealth applied to a justice of the Supreme Court, under section 14 of the Arbitration Act 1902 (New South Wales) for leave to enforce the award in the same manner as a judgment. This application was referred by the justice to the Full Court of the Supreme Court. It was heard by the Full Supreme Court on the 29th August, 1923, and on the 23rd November, 1923, the Court delivered its reserved judgment, and unanimously made the order asked for. On the 5th December, 1923, the contractors moved the Supreme Court for leave to appeal to the Privy Council. This was opposed by the Commonwealth, and referred to the Full Court of the Supreme Court, which granted the leave. On the loth December, 1923, the contractors appealed alternatively to the High Court from the order of the Supreme Court- granting the Commonwealth leave to enforce the award. The Commonwealth appealed to the High Court against the order of the Supreme Court granting leave to appeal to the Privy Council, and on the 1st December, 1924, the Commonwealth's appeal was allowed; Knox,C.J., and Gavan Dully, *J.,* dissenting. In July, 1925, the contractors lodged a petition petitioning the Privy Council for special leave to appeal from the order of the Full Supreme Court granting the Commonwealth leave to enforce the award. This petition was refused by the Privy Council with costs. On the 13th November, 1925, the hearing of the High Court appeal commenced, and, on the18th December, 1925, the High Court unanimously dismissed the appeal with costs, and lield that the appellants were stopped from alleging the invalidity of the contracts. On the 11 th January, 1926, the solicitors for the contractors asked for a stay of proceedings pending, as they were instructed to apply to the Privy Council for special leave to appeal from the decision of the High Court. This request was refused. The Crown Solicitor then made a demand for payment. **Sir Sidney** Kidman's solicitors have . now forwarded to the Attorney-General a statement setting out his version of the facts, asking that the whole matter be reviewed, and, in any case, asking to be allowed terms for extended payment. On the 12th February, 1926, the AttorneyGeneral directed - "It is impossible to re-open this matter as if the protracted negotiations, arbitration, and' legal proceedings had never taken place. The award has been made, and the Courts have refused to set it aside. No application for reduction of amount can be entertained. Proposals for payment will be considered, if definite in character and made promptly." 1422 *Kidman-Mayoh* [SENATE.] *Shipbuilding Contract.* On the 5th March, 1926, the following letter was sent to the solicitors for Kidman and Mayoh - Messrs. Blake and Riggall: - {:#subdebate-2-1} #### Re Kidman and Mayoh I have the honour, by direction of the Attorney-General, to acknowledge your letter of the 2nd February, covering a statement on behalf of **Sir Sidney** Kidman. The Attorney-General has perused the statement, and does not think it necessary to refer to it in detail, but does not admit its accuracy. I am to inform you that it is impossible to re-open the matter as if the protracted negotiations, arbitration, and legal proceedings had never taken place. The award has been made, and the courts have refused to set it aside. No application for reduction of amount can be entertained. Proposals for payment will be considered, however, if they are definite in character and made promptly. I have the honour to be, {:#subdebate-2-2} #### Sirs, Your obedient servant, (Signed) R. R. Garran, {:#subdebate-2-3} #### Secretary {: #subdebate-2-3-s0 .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE:
NAT -- We have reached the stage where they have exhausted every legal procedure open to them. The Commonwealth has made a demand for payment, and is prepared to take whatever legal action is necessary to enforce it. It has definitely refused *to* reduce the amount that is owing, or to entertain the suggestion that the case be reopened. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- Has the Government applied for costs, plus interest? {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE: -- The Government is applying for the amount awarded by the arbitrator. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- Not plus costs ? {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE: -- The Commonwealth has had to pay its own costs when the court has not awarded them against the defendants, but when costs have been given against the defendants, the defendants have had to pay them. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- Have Kidman and Mayoh paid any of the costs that have been awarded against them? {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE: -- I assume that when the court awarded costs against them, they paid them. Apparently the intention of **Senator Needham** in moving the adjournment of the Senate was to attempt to make it appear that the delay which has taken place in the settlement of this matter has been occasioned by the Commonwealth Government, and that it has been remiss in protecting the interests of the Commonwealth. I have given the facts. They show that the Government has taken every action open to it to protect the interests of the Commonwealth. The delay has been caused by Kidman and Mayoh, availing themselves of every possible legal procedure under the laws of the land to escape payment. I do not defend, but on the contrary I condemn, their repudiation of their agreement to abide by the award of the arbitrator. For that, however, the Commonwealth Government cannot be condemned or even criticized. Any such criticism must be directed against the parties responsible, Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh. {: #subdebate-2-3-s1 .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator FINDLEY:
Victoria -- The contract entered into between Kidman and Mayoh and the Commonwealth Government has been very much in evidence throughout the Commonwealth for some years. That contract was made whilst we were in the throes of the Great War, when patriotism should have been manifested by everybody, but more especially in respect to the building of these ships. It appears to me that Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh were nothing ' less than professional patriots. Had they played the game they would have carried out faithfully and well the contract into which they entered. The manner in which that contract was carried out constitutes one of the biggest scandals that has been perpetrated in Australia. The plans and specifications were clear and understandable, but instead of being observed they were departed from. According to the Minister **(Senator Pearce)** himself, fraud was perpetrated . It is a marvel to me how Kidman and Mayoh came into the matter at all. Before they were given the contract I had never heard of a firm of shipbuilders of that name. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- They came into the business for the sole purpose of building these particular ships. Kidman furnished the capital for the enterprise. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator FINDLEY: -- They were ships that would not float. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- That is so, unfortunately. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- They were coffins. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- It was not Kidman's intention to build ships of that character. **Senator- FINDLEY-** Everybody expected ships to float and to be seaworthy when completed. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- Do not forget that they were built by Australian workmen, who were willing to do that sort of job. That is the unfortunate part of the matter. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator FINDLEY: -- That is a libel on the Australian workmen; the. blame should be put upon the right shoulders. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- The honorable senator should read the evidence that was given before the Public Works Committee. It was shown very clearly that men working on the vessels knew that they were doing a poor job, but said that it was no business of theirs. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator FINDLEY: -- We are dealing with the contractors to-day. One would have thought that the word of wellknown men like these would have been their bond. The company first requested that the whole matter should be investigated by the Public Works Committee, the decision of which it agreed to accept, but when it found that the committee was against it, it asked for another arbitrator to be appointed. Its legal advisers appear to have suggested that course. After this arbitrator had decided adversely to the company one would have thought that it would pay what it owed to the Government. But it has been parleying ever since, and seeking for some way in which to avoid paying ils just dues. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- I hope it will not get out of paying what it owes. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator FINDLEY: -- So do I; it ought to have paid up long ago. I do not blame the Government for the delay that has occurred, but blame is certainly attachable to some one. I heard **Senator Foll** interject some little time ago that the man who was supervising the building of these ships took his life just after the inquiry by the Public Works Committee began. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator Foll: -- That is so ; and,_ unhappily, it handicapped our inquiries a lot. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator FINDLEY: -- One can quite understand that. It is highly regrettable that the company should have evaded its payments for six years. I was glad to hear **Senator Pearce** say that finality had been reached in regard to legal procedure, and I hope that before the Easter recess is reached an announcement will be made that it has paid what it owes. {: #subdebate-2-3-s2 .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL:
Queensland .- The Senate should be grateful to **Senator Needham** for having introduced this discussion, since it has given the Leader of the Government **(Senator Pearce)** an opportunity to intimate clearly just what the position is. There is no doubt whatever that the contractors have taken advantage of every means in their power to avoid meeting their responsibilities. ' Personally, I shall not be surprised at anything they do to escape their legal obligation to the Commonwealth. While the Public Works Committee was inquiring into this matter the company gave an example of the tactics that it is prepared to adopt to suit its own ends. A certain group of plans was submitted to the committee, which the company said had been submitted to Lloyds in London in order to obtain a Lloyds' Al certificate for these vessels, and which the ships were being built to; but it came out in the course of the evidence that so far as the bilge ceiling was concerned, at any rate, the edge fastenings shown in the plans submitted to Lloyds had been left out altogether. During the early part of the committee's inquiry the proceedings were favorable to the company; but after the **chairman, Mr. Gregory,** discovered that we were working on a set of plans entirely different from those submitted to Lloyds, the inquiry took a very definite turn against the company. Statements were made by certain former employees of the firm that dummy bolts and edge fastenings were used. The committee thereupon sought the assistance and advice of **Mr. R.** Farquhar, formerly of the ship-building firm of Walkers Limited, Maryborough, Queensland, but now in charge of the Cockatoo Island Dockyard. Under his supervision the members of the committee thoroughly examined the ships. They were armed with long thin-bladed knives, with which they proved that practically all of. the edge fastenings, which should have been fitted in the hold clamps and ceiling from the main deck to the lower turn of the bilge fore and aft at about 5-f t. intervals had been omitted. An unfortunate feature of the business, and one which should not be lost sight of, is that many of the men who were working on the ship knew exactly what was going on. When it became known that Messrs. Burns, Philp and Company were buying the ship from, the Commonwealth Government, these men came forward with the information that the construction, work on the ship was not all that it should have been, and it was largely on their evidence that the committee ascertained the real defects in the ship. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- The men gave in-, formation to Burns,. Philp, but did not disclose the faults to the Commonwealth Government. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- Some of the men who were working on the ship were able to show members of the committee which bolts had been put through and which were dummy bolts. One man was able to mark with an X every dummy bolt in that part of the ship where he had been working. Tests made with an electric current to get a contact showed that all the bolts so marked were dummies. Some were drawn from the woodwork in the presence of the committee. {: .speaker-KMI} ##### Senator Graham: -- What length were the dummy bolts? {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- They varied in length from about 6 inches to 8 inches. If they had gone right 'through from the exterior to the interior of the hull, they would have been at least 2 feet long, and would have been clinched on the inside. To cover up the fraud, there was a corresponding bolt on the outside, to make it appear that all bolts went through the hull. Every edge fastening bolt, in the bilge ceiling of the ship was left out altogether. These bolts would have been put in edgewise and practically hidden by planks. Another factor which had a bearing on the position was that the contractors, were to receive a certain amount - I think it was £26 5s-. a ton - for all extra dead-weight tonnage. Naturally, they built the ship as "beamy " as possible, with the result that when launched the vessel developed what is known as a hog or camel's hump. Lloyds refused to grant a . certificate, and Burns, Philp then went back on their contract to purchase the ship, and' the subsequent inquiries led to the disclosures indicated in the report of the Public Works Committee. The Minister **(Senator Pearce)** fairly stated the. Government's position this afternoon. The Government had to make progress pay ments during construction. That is not an unusual practice. It obtains in 90 per cent, of all building contracts. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- Progress payments are made on certificates. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- That is so. **Mr. Brown,** who was appointed by the Cockatoo Island authorities as Government inspector, issued certificates upon which the Government made progress payments. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- And those progress payments were made be. fore the defects were revealed. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- The first payments were made when the keel was laid, and other progress payments were made as the work proceeded. The defects could only be revealed when the ship was launched, unless some ono divulged what was going on. The chances are that the vessel would nob have got 5 miles outside Sydney Heads if she had been allowed to go to sea and it was at all rough.- The Government might have exercised a little more activity in securing the assets of the company aiffter the award of the arbitrator had been given. The company was more or less in the nature of a partnership between Mayoh Brothers and **Sir Sidney** Kidman. As it was not a limited liability company, I assume the Government felt that it had the right to call upon the assets of all or any of the partners, and therefore took no action at the time to secure the assets of the company. There were then considerable assets on the ground at Ryde in the shape of machinery, spars, rigging, winches, and other ship-building fittings. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- Were Kidman and Mayoh the only members of the company ? {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- It was a private firm, consisting of the Mayoh Brothers and **Sir Sidney** Kidman. All the evidence discloses that **Sir Sidney** Kidman was the unfortunate pigeon who was plucked by the Mayoh Brothers. I firmly believe that he went into the venture in all good faith. He knew that shipping was badly needed at the time, and put his money ii.i to the business, but unfortunately he fell into the hands of the Philistines and waa an- innocent victim. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- He knew nothing about the defects in the work. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- **Sir Sidney** Kidman knew nothing whatever about ship-build- ing. He acted from purely patriotic motives, and presented Mayoh1 Brothers with a . blank cheque, to go ahead with the contract. Any blame attaching to the business rests entirely upon the shoulders of the Mayoh Brothers. There- is no doubt in my mind that one of the brothers, who was actively engaged in the work, knew all that was going on. When he was cornered he endeavoured, in the most cowardly manner, to throw the blame on certain junior, officers and other individuals. The plans sent to London, and upon which Lloyds? certificate would have been issued,, showed all' the bolts in position-. **Sir Sidney** Kidman has lost many thousands of pounds- over the business',, bat that is- hot our concern now.. This is a legitimate claim and, in my opinion, it should be paid. The ships were not even of any value as coal hulks,, so they were burned: As; I have said, the company had. considerable assets .when the award was made, but Mayoh Brothers, from time to time, sold a few winches and other gear to pay salaries, until finally the assets of the company were dissipated. The Crown Law authorities should have taken definite action to secure the assets at the time. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- If. they could have obtained, an injunction. {: #subdebate-2-3-s3 .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL:
QUEENSLAND · NAT; UAP from 1931 -- Apparently no attempt was made, but I do not know whether an application would have been granted. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLachlan: -- No; there was no final judgment. {: .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: -- Then that disposes of that possibility. I trust, however, that the Government will take action without further delay to secure payment. This matter has been, delayed altogether too long. The Senate is indebted to **Senator Pearce** for his statement .of the position, which shows that the company has. endeavoured to counter every step taken by the Crown Law Department, but that the Commonwealth has come out on. top in every action taken in the courts. {: #subdebate-2-3-s4 .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM:
Western Australia -- I can assure **Senator Pearce** that I had no sinister purpose in view in moving the adjournment of the Senate. My only object was to obtain from , the Minister what he has- now told ns - the exact position of the proceedings between the Commonwealth Government and Messrs- Kidman and Mayoh. **Senator Pearce-** seized on my statement that- I would not have paid a penny i» the way of progress payments. Neither would the Commonwealth' Government if its inspector had done his work properly.. Had that inspector been alive to the interests of the Commonwealth, and properly inspected the- progress of the construction of- the wooden vessels^ not a penny in the shape of progress payments would have been paid. **Senator Pearce** is- himself- an expert tradesman. If he saw that a house which was being built for him was not being erected in accordance with the plans and specifications, he would refuse to make progress payments. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator Pearce: -- That is exactly the attitude the Commonwealth Government took up. It made no further progress payments when it saw that the contractors were not building- the vessels in accordance with the plans and specifications. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- The inspection on behalf of the Commonwealth must have been very lax. In regard to the proceedings before the Privy Council, prior to the statement of the 4th March last, we had only the reply given by **Sir Littleton** Groom in 1924 that the matter between the Commonwealth and Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh was within our own courts. The Minister has now brought the history of the case up to date. But I wonder how the Commonwealth will enforce the award. **Senator Pearce** claimed that I had suggested that no action had been taken until the present month. As a matter of fact, I. simply quoted the Minister's own reply on the 4th March last, " Instructions- have been issued to the Commonwealth Crown Solicitor to enforce judgment." {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator Pearce: -- That did not mean that it was the first time action had been taken. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -It was a bald statement which stood by itself. The Minister says now that "other attempts have been made to obtain payment. I wonder what the Government will do to enforce payment. According to- **Senator Pearce,** all legal channels have been exhausted ; and Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh have not a feather to % with, so far as legal tribunals are concerned. Will the Government adopt the suggestion of **Senator Poll** and distrain on. the goods and chattels of these people ? Later on we 1426 *Broadcast Listeners' Licences.* [SENATE.] *Transport of Chilled Meat.* shall have to ask the Government what steps it has taken to obtain payment. I am sorry that **Senator Duncan** should have made an attack on the workmen engaged in the building of these vessels. His condemnation was a slander on Australian workmen. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- No; it was not. They did the work on these vessels. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- They did not see the plans and specifications; they were instructed to cut bolts and nuts of a certain length, and they had to obey orders. Furthermore, it was during war time, and, if they had refused to obey the orders given by their foreman and had ceased work, **Senator Duncan** would have called them traitors. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- That is no excuse for what they did. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: -- They had to obey orders or lose their employment. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- It is to the credit of some of the workmen that they left their employment rather than put in inferior work. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator NEEDHAM: **- Senator Duncan's** statement was a slander on Australian workmen. I leave the matter there. **Senator Pearce** has given us the history of the case. I hope that, at the earliest possible moment, all necessary proceedings will be taken against Messrs. Kidman and Mayoh for the recovery of the money due to the Commonwealth. Having achieved the object I had in view in moving this motion, I now ask leave to withdraw it. Motion, by leave, withdrawn. {: .page-start } page 1426 {:#debate-3} ### QUESTION {:#subdebate-3-0} #### BROADCAST LISTENERS' LICENCES {: #subdebate-3-0-s0 .speaker-JZD} ##### Senator FOLL: asked the Minister representing the Postmaster-General, *upon notice -* >Whether it is his intention to revise the regulations relative to listening-in licences, so that persons paying fees for six months will be relieved from further liability in the event of the disposal of their sets? {: #subdebate-3-0-s1 .speaker-JRW} ##### Senator CRAWFORD:
Honorary Minister · QUEENSLAND · NAT -- Broadcast listeners' licences are issued for a minimum period of one year. There is no half-yearly licence; but it was arranged recently that listeners could pay their annual fee in two half-yearly instalments. It is not intended to vary these conditions at present. {: .page-start } page 1426 {:#debate-4} ### QUESTION {:#subdebate-4-0} #### OODNADATTA TO ALICE SPRINGS RAILWAY Testing Water Supplies {: #subdebate-4-0-s0 .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir HENRY BARWELL:
through Senator Payne asked the Minister for Home and Territories, *upon notice -* >Is it the intention of the Government to inaugurate a thoroughly comprehensive scheme to test for water, by means of portable handboring plants, and by other means, the country to be served by the Oodnadatta to Alice Springs Railway? {: #subdebate-4-0-s1 .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator PEARCE:
NAT -- The Government has already under consideration a scheme for the location and conservation of underground water supplies generally throughout the Alice Springs district of the Northern Territory. Preliminary work has been confined to making the main stock route as safe as is reasonably possible. Trial bores are now being put down by the Government under agreement with the lessees of Andado Station (McDill Brothers), about 50 miles due east of Charlotte Waters. Further trial bores are under construction on Emily Plain, south of Alice Springs, and other bores have been authorized to test the Burt Plain, on the northern fall of the Macdonnell Ranges. Last year, the services of **Mr. Keith** Ward, Government Geologist of South Australia, and an authority on underground water supplies, were made available to the Commonwealth Government, and he was commissioned to report generally on the question of water supplies throughout the pastoral areas of the Territory. **Mr. Ward's** report,' which is a very comprehensive one, is now being considered by the Government. {: .page-start } page 1426 {:#debate-5} ### QUESTION {:#subdebate-5-0} #### TRANSPORT OF CHILLED MEAT >Is the Minister aware - > >That the present market for Austra lian beef overseas is in a very depressed state, with consequent low prices; > >That there is an excellent market in the southern portion of the Commonwealth, with correspondingly high prices? > >If so, will the Minister take steps to facilitate the provision of necessary coastal shipping so as to permit of chilled meat being trans- *Crimes* [10 March, 1926.] *Bill.* 1427 ported from northern Australia to southern ports, and thus enable southern consumers to obtain the best quality meat at reasonable prices, at the same time ensuring that the northern cattle-growers will be fairly remunerated for their products? {: type="1" start="2"} 0. I have discussed this matter very fully with members of the meat trade, who are anxious to assist, provided the necessary refrigerated space can be secured for the transport of chilled beef from Queensland to the southern States of the Commonwealth. Some days ago, I 'placed the matter before the Commonwealth Shipping Line, and hope to receive a reply at a very early date, when I will make a further statement on the subject. {: .page-start } page 1427 {:#debate-6} ### QUESTION {:#subdebate-6-0} #### SHALE OIL BOUNTY {: #subdebate-6-0-s0 .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: asked the Minister representing the Minister for Trade and Customs, *upon notice -* {: type="1" start="1"} 0. When does the bounty on the production of shale oil expire? 1. Is it the intention of the Government to, renew it? {: .speaker-KBJ} ##### Senator Sir VICTOR WILSON: -- The Minister for Trade and Customs has supplied the following answers to the honorable senator's questions: - {: type="1" start="1"} 0. 31st August, 1928. 1. This matter will receive full consideration at a later date. {: .page-start } page 1427 {:#debate-7} ### PAPERS The following papers were presented : - >Audit Act - Transfers of Amounts approved by the Governor-General in Council - Financial Year 1925-26- Dated 3rd March, 1926. > >Defence Act -Royal Military College of Australia - Report for Year 1924-25. {: .page-start } page 1427 {:#debate-8} ### CRIMES BILL {:#subdebate-8-0} #### Second Reading Debate resumed from 5th March *(vide* page 1387) on motion by **Senator Pearce** - >That the bill be now read a second time. upon which **Senator Gardiner** had moved by way of amendment - > >That all the words after "That" be left out with a view to insert in lieu thereof the words - "this House is of opinion that the bill should be withdrawn, with a view to redrafting so as to eliminate the obnoxious clauses referring to industrial disputes, as such clauses associated with the Crimes Act are an unwarranted affront to the great bodies of organized labour." {: #subdebate-8-0-s0 .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE:
Tasmania .- I congratulate **Senator Pearce,** who moved the second reading of this bill, upon the very clear and lucid exposition he gave of its aims and objects. After hearing the Leader of the Opposition **(Senator Gardiner)** and the Deputy Leader **(Senator Needham),** I have been wondering how those two honorable senators, who strongly oppose the measure, can reconcile their attitude towards it with their repeated professions of a desire to preserve the best interests of Australia- professions which we heard a little while ago in this chamber, and which were repeated during the recent elections. If ever a bill has been introduced into an Australian Parliament having for its object the conserving of all those things we hold dear, it is this bill which we are now considering. Notwithstanding the fact that the Government has been taunted with having introduced this measure at the bidding of the capitalist section, honorable senators opposite know that the reverse is the truth. Is there justification for any section endeavouring to disrupt our social system and destroy the edifice that has been built up at great sacrifice? The people of Australia 'live under better conditions than those obtaining in any other country. The Creator has given us a land of such reproductive capacity that, notwithstanding the frequent occurrence of droughts, and the dislocation of trade and commerce, we have been able to rise superior to those disadvantages. Is it not apparent to all, therefore, that if we could prevail upon those who profess to be the leaders of the masses of the people, to teach them to give of their best, there need not be one genuine case of unemployment in Australia to-day ? In my opinion most of the troubles that now confront us are due to the fact that a certain proportion of the people are not prepared to "do their bit," the result being a scarcity of work and a diminution of output, all of which tend to bring about industrial unrest. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Does not the honorable senator realize that, if employment can be found for adi workers in the summer months, there must necessarily be a big army of unemployed iri the. winter'? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- No. Ample employment would be available at all sea.sous if men were prepared to do any work that came to their hands. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- In Queensland the work in connexion with the wool and sugar industries is mostly winter employment. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- But work should foe available, both summer and winter, in that State. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- It is. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- Quite so. Australians have entered into a great heritage owing to the efforts of the pioneers ; but a certain type of individual, who has been assiduous in his efforts in the last few years, has been endeavouring t<? drag to the dust all those things that we hold most dear. If the -Government had not realized its duty to the people, and introduced a measure of this description to -deal with that type of individual, it would have been unworthy to remain in power. The only conclusion at which I am able to arrive is that an effort is being made, by means of this bill, to deal in a determined fashion with men of the type to which I have referred. The Opposition, practically unanimously, has raised a storm of protest against the proposal. It has denounced the Government for attempting to provide what can only be regarded as a fit punishment for offences such as those described in the bill. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Does the honorable senator insinuate that the Opposition objects to the whole of the bill? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- The measure contains two important features, and only those features have been discussed by honorable . senators opposite. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- We have not said anything in opposition to the clause dealing with unlawful associations. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I shall come to that aspect later. First of all I wish to reply to the statement by the Leader of the Opposition **(Senator Gardiner),** as well as by the Deputy Leader **(Senator Needham),** that the Nationalist Government; which the majority of the people of Australia supports, is a capitalist government, and has brought down this bill at the behest of the capitalist sec tion. Do honorable senators opposite suggest that -a person in receipt of an income of £500 per annum is a capitalist? {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- No. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- Nobody would do so; yet honorable senators opposite contend that the Government was returned by the capitalist section, .and that it has introduced the bill at its bidding. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- Honorable senators* opposite have been saying that the Government was returned to power with the aid of the "money bags" amd the newspapers. They ;ire now changing their ground. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- The accusation that the Government was returned by the capitalistic section of the community led me to peruse the last report of the Commissioner of Taxation. He discloses the fact that in the whole of the Commonwealth there -are -only 54,48.6 persons who have an income greater than £501 per annum. I then looked up the electoral returns, in which I found that 3/100,000 adults voted at the last election. Of that number, at least 1,800,000 voted for government candidates. That, I consider, is an effective reply to the bold statement that the Government was returned by the capitalistic section of the community. Never previously in the history of this federation has a government been able to say that a majority of the people of Australia stood behind it. That, however, is the position to-day. The people gave their mandate in no uncertain way. When, a government has been returned by a majority of the people of any democratic country, as is the case in Australia, any law passed by the two Houses of Parliament of that country must havethe goodwill and the support of a majority of its people. **Senator Gardiner** referred to this as an iniquitous measure. If hewere here to-day, I would tell him that in making that statement ho charged a. majority of the people of Australia with, being supporters of iniquitous legislation. If I were to ask him whether he believed that a majority of the people should ruleAustralia, I have not the slightest doubtthat he would answer, " Of course, I do. It is one of the principal planks in our platform." When one of the main political principles of honorable senators is majority rule, how dare they class as iniquitous any legislation that is passed by a majority of the people of Australia *t* *Crimes* [10 March, 1926.] *BilI.* 1429 {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- This legislation has not been passed by a majority of the people of Australia. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- It will have been when it leaves this chamber. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- That has yet to be proved. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- The honorable senator is quibbling, as he so often does. He has frequently said that when a democratic community that enjoys adult franchise returns to power a certain party, that party for the time being represents the people. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- I am not disputing that, but I am disputing the honorable senator's statement. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I speak in this Senate on behalf of those persons who, by their votes, have placed me in my present position. I come here, not as a delgate, but as a representative. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Thehonorable senator said that this legislation had been passed by a majority of the people. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- If it becomes law, it will have the hallmark of the approval of amajority of the people who were qualified to vote in Australia. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- It hasnot yet received their hallmark. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- If it becomes law, it will have their hallmark. Had the election taken place five or six years ago, I might not be justified in so decisively making that statement, but, as we are fresh from the elections, I consider that I am justified in claiming that the bill has the approval of the people of Australia. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Your own press, that formerly " boomed " you, is now toning against you. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I do not mind that. Thepress does not rule Australia, nor does itdictate what my actions shall be. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- I do not say that it does. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -I am answerable only to those who sent me here, and to my own conscience. I know clearly what my attitude was on this matter when 3 contested the last election. Wherever I spoke, I said that if the Nationalist Government was returned to power it would be its duty to introduce legislation that would once and for all dealdecisively with that section of the conrmunity which was endeavouring to disrupt our affairs. and that no matter how severe that legislation mightbe, I should support it, because Australia should not be a home for those people. One of the principal provisions of the measure is that relating to deportation. I cannot understand why a man who happens to have been born in England, Ireland, or Scotland should receive special consideration, if, after his arrival in Australia, he proves himself a menace to the life of this community. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- It is proposed to give him special consideration. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- If I admit an individual into my home, treat him as one of the family, and give him all ike advantages that my own children enjoy, and then find that he is endeavouring to undermine and drag in the dust those things that I hold sacred in the home, should I hesitate to deport him? I would not, and neither would any honorable senator opposite. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- I suppose the honorable senator would tell him to get out. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- No; he would go out. Is not the community life of Australia as sacred as its home life ? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- It ought to be. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- If we have admitted into our home - Australia - individuals to whom we have given all the privileges that the Australian-born people enjoy, and we find that by subtlety and other means they are endeavouring to wreck the edifice upon which our social system has been built-. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- What father or mother would deport his or her own child from the home? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- Does **Senator Barnes** father these people who come from overseas with the avowed intention of wrecking Australia? I do not claim them as my children, and I , am suite that Australia does not. The people who come here should conf orm to the law and living conditions of this country, otherwise, they forfeit any right to stay here. When the Leader of the Senate **(Senator Pearce)** stated in his second-reading speech on this bill that if the Communist party in this community were not numerous, it : at least exerted a powerful influence upon our trade union movement, **Senator Needham** said distinctly that his statement was untrue. In my opinion, the Communist party in Australia is a grave danger to our welfare. I do not know whether **Senator Needham** made his interjection through ignorance, hut I know that I can go to the Sydney Domain on -almost any Sunday afternoon, and hear dangerous communist doctrines preached. I find that young children, who should grow up to be useful citizens, have their minds filled, in communistic Sunday schools, with sentiments that no loyal Australian should- harbour. In these circumstances, the Government was bound to do something to prevent agitators of this description from broadcasting their views. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- But are the views being broadcast? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- They are; and the honorable senator may hear them in the Domain on any Sunday afternoon. I dare say he could hear the same kind of thing in the Adelaide Botanic Park. I once had the pleasure of listening to the honorable senator delivering an address there, and I realized that he was a moderate Labourite, who selected his language, and did not consider villifying his opponents to be his chief purpose in life. But I also heard another man express sentiments there that were totally against the best interests of Australia. Men of that type are to be found in every large town of the ' Commonwealth. The communist danger is more than possible, it is very real. I am sure that the great majority of trade unionists in Australia realize that. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- Otherwise, they would not be expelling communists from their ranks. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- But are they expelling them? I have not heard of the expulsion of a single man on the ground that he is a communist. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Quite a number of communists have been expelled from the trade unions. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I know that persons who wish to join the Labour party are now obliged to sign an anti-communist pledge; but I have, not heard of the expulsion of any member of the party on account of his holding communistic views. Is **Senator Hoare** able to give me the. assurance that the Labour party has taken steps to expel the communist from within its ranks? {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- "We expelled one in South Australia. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- On the ground of his holding communistic views? {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Yes. We gave him his money back, and told him he could go. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I am very glad to hear that at least one of the Labour organizations is doing the right thing. Was that action taken before the last elections ? {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- It was. We have very few communists in South Australia. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- South Australia has always appeared to me to be one of our model States. Probably the trade unions and Labour organizations there have not been influenced by communism to any great extent. For a very long time, the communists have had a great influence in the Labour organizations of New South Wales. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- They are trade union wreckers, in my opinion. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- Then I am sure that we may rely upon **Senator Hoare'!** support of this bill. In the course of his second-reading speech, **Senator Pearce** said that the executive of the. Sydney Trades and. Labour Council contained a large majority of communists. Honorable senators opposite interjected that that statement was made only for the purpose of National propaganda during the last election. I challenge any honorable senator opposite to deny that of the twelve members of the executive committee of the Sydney Trades and Labour Council, at least ten are members of the communist party. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- The daily press says so; but I do not know whether it is true. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- Will the honorable senator deny it? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- How can I deny it when I do not know? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- Seeing that no denial of the statement has been made by any prominent Labour member of any Parliament in Australia, I think that we , may take it as being true. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- " Jock " Garden, the daily press, and **Senator Pearce** all say it, so I suppose it must be true ! {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- There has been a great deal of talk about this bill being directed against the trade unions and trade unionists of Australia. I have never heard such bunkum as has been talked on that point. Although honor- able senators opposite disagree with our broad political policy, they would realize if they read the bill carefully, that not even the widest stretch of imagination could justify the statement that it is intended to interfere in any way with trade unions or with trade unionists, provided that they obey the law. The provisions of the bill make no differentiation between the greatest scoundrel in Australia and the most honest trade unionist in Australia who may be guilty of a breach of the law. The whole of our population is placed on the same footing. Those who break the law will be punished. It is regrettable, therefore, that honorable senators opposite should so constantly suggest that the Government, by introducing this bill, is seeking to interfere with legitimate trade unionism. Iu taking that line of opposition they are descending to a very low level. I assert without fear of truthful contradiction that in the whole political history of Australia no party has had the best interests of the whole community at heart more than the present-day Nationalist party. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- The " Forty Thieves " were not in it with them. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- That is a strong statement to make. I have heard something about the pot calling the kettle black, but I shall not apply it in this case. I ask the honorable senator to name a single instance of thievery on the part of the Nationalist party. . He may, of course, consider that the decisive victory of the Government at the last election was due to our taking from the Labour party hundreds of thousands of votes that are usually polled . for Labour. Those votes on this occasion were polled for the Government. Even Labour supporters apparently realized that their leaders had for many years hoodwinked and misled them. Some little time ago I met, in Tasmania, a friend of many years standing, whom I have always known as a strong Labour supporter. He told me that at the last election he had voted for the Nationalist party. When I asked the reason he said, "I have come to the .conclusion that the ideals that the original Labour party stood for, as being essential to the happiness and prosperity of Australia, have been reached by the present-day Nationalist party ; and I am a Nationalist from this out." {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- Has not the honorable senator always been an opponent of the Labour party ? Has he not always opposed the high ideals to which he has just referred ? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I am glad to say that as the years go on my outlook becomes broader. I realize that many things which 20 or 25 years ago I didnot think to be in the best interests of Australia, arc now necessary, on account of the development and progress of the nation. I have always had the courage of my opinions, and have never belonged to the class of persons who say, " I have always held this view, and I shall hold it until I die." . There is no hope for a man like that. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- A man should be a weathercock, I suppose? {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- A weathercock has a good deal to be said for it. Before concluding my remarks, I must refer to one or two statements made by the Leader of the Opposition **(Senator Gardiner)** and the Deputy Leader of the Opposition **(Senator Needham)** in speaking to this bill. **.Senator Gardiner** said that Australia was inhabited by the most lawloving and law-abiding people in the world; but later on he observed that the Government was using every means in its power to place an indignity upon our Labour organizations. If the honorable senator considers .that Australians are the most law-abiding people in the world he should certainly do or say nothing to inflame their minds so* that- they may become unlawful. Remarks such as he made cau only belittle the law in the eyes of the community. The honorable senator should advise people to obey, not only the law as it stands, but also any new laws that may be enacted. Inflammatory speeches, such as he made on this measure, are calculated to change -public admiration for the law to public detestation of it. The honorable senator also said, "If we have just laws, properly administered, we should have a well-governed community." What did he mean ? Surely he realized that his statement was not likely to be helpful to the people of Australia. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- He only wished to take Tattersalls as a case in point. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I have a good deal of respect for **Senator Findley,** but it will be lessened if he attempts to import any reference to Tattersalls consultations into this debate. **Senator Needham** is reported, also, to have said that the bill manufactures crime. Does not every prohibitive measure passed by this Parliament provide for new offences? At present, there is no punishment for certain offences that are included in this measure. For example, there is no law against an organized attempt to disrupt society, or to hold up and prevent trade and commerce between the various States, or with other countries. When this measure is assented to,, we shall have a law to deal with offences in that- category. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- At present, it is a grave offence to do what this bill seeks to punish. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- - But the position has become so acute that definite action is called for. Our experiences of last year indicate- what may happen, even in a country like Australia. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- -Every one of the offences dealt with by this bill may be punished under the existing law. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- I do not agree with the honorable senator. I have sufficient confidence in the Prime Minister. **(Mr. Bruce)** to believe that he would not attempt to introduce legislation of this character unnecessarily. But if there is power under existing law to deal .with such offences,, why is there any opposition to this bill? I am confident, however, that neither the Leader nor the Deputy Leader of the Opposition believes that there is power under the existing law to deal with the class of offences included in this bill. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- The Government should never have power to imprison or deport industrial leaders. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- There is no reference in the bill to industrial leaders. Does **Senator Findley** suggest that any industrialist who may be dealt with under the provisions of this bill has the right to encourage strikes at any moment, and with any weapon ? Any industrial leader who adopts that line of reasoning is an advocate of anarchy and rebellion. The bona fide industrial leader has nothing to fear from this bill. No section of the community should be above the law. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- - A few people, at all events, seem to be above the- law, because they can dodge taxation, steal ships', and give away woollen mills. {: .speaker-K09} ##### Senator PAYNE: -- We heard a lot of misrepresentation during the election about the giving away of woollen, mills and the sale of Commonwealth ships, as well as the mismanagement of the Postal Department. But the people gave a decisive answer. Opposition candidates paid a poor compliment to the intelligence of the people when they tried to hoodwink them during the last election campaign. I shall conclude by expressing pleasure at the introduction of this bill, which I believe will be an effective instrument for the maintenance of law and order. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- Does not the honorable senator propose to support our amendment ? Seator PAYNE.- -Certainly not. It is merely an invitation to negative the second reading of the- bill. I hope that the measure will pass its second reading with a substantial majority, and that honorable senators opposite, realizing their mistake, will help the Government to pass it through committee. {: #subdebate-8-0-s1 .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON:
Queensland -- I thought that after the strenuous all-night sittings of last session we had done with this legislation, but it appears that where lawyers differ laymen must suffer; because we have again to go through the mill. However, I believe that the bill now before the Senate will be more effective in operation, and probably be found more strictly constitutional than that passed last session. Much has happened since then. I propose to mention a few of the outstanding industrial incidents in my own State that justify the introduction of this bill. My first reference is to the Gladstone strike. A vessel loaded with meat was held' up, and there was every prospect that the cargo would be destroyed because the waterside workers refused to allow the loading of coal necessary to keep the refrigerating machinery going. That strike caused a good deal of ill-feeling, and gave rise to many ugly situations.. Eventually the men on the land - the farmers and graziers of the Port Curtis district - took a hand in the trouble. They intimated that if the strikers would not load the coal, or allow it to be loaded, they would do the work themselves. Their firmness^ had the desired effect. A very regrettable feature of that trouble waa that the railway authorities expressed their regret that they were unable to supply trucks to convey the coal to the ships; showing clearly the influence .exerted by trade unionists in Queensland on the Government. Another strike took place at Cairns. The trouble there was due to the determination of the unions to impose the rotary system upon the ship-owners. Its effect was to interfere with the shipment of sugar, with the result that the cane- rotted in the field, and serious losses were sustained by farmers in Northern Queensland. Farmers in one district had been battling against adverse conditions for- three years, and when they had an opportunity to get a fair return for their labour, the waterside workers prevented sugar from being shipped. {: .speaker-JRW} ##### Senator Crawford: -- Forty thousand tons of sugar-cane rotted in that district. The strike, ruined many sugar farmers-. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- The situation was very serious indeed. The practice of the banks is to make advances against bills of lading, but as shipments were not being made, great distress was caused amongst a large number of people. Eventually the farmers in the Cairns district followed the example of producers in the Gladstone district. They came into town in force, and quickly caused the strikers to capitulate. Another serious disturbance was the railway strike, which was the *coup de main* of the unions with a vengeance. I may say that they deserve to be congratulated upon the efficacy of that move. I am not going into the merits of the strike at all. There may have been some justification for unrest, but the whole business » absolutely illegal and unconstitutional. I cannot help thinking that it is a pity it did not last a month instead of about eight days, because had it lasted longer, there would have been a great outcry by the people of Queensland, and the railway men, instead of losing comparatively little in. the way of wages, would, have lost heavily, and would have been very wroth with their leaders,, who, curiously enough, in my city - Rockhampton - had no connexion at all. with the railways themselves-. One- was a Rhodes scholar, a man who had obtained his degree under the beneficent, provisions of the late Cecil Rhodes's will, and the other attended the Queensland University, and is a member of the Workers' Educational Association, which is subsidized by the Queensland Labour Government! Both of these men are avowed- communists. If Cecil Rhodes could have foreseen that one of those who had been given the benefit of his magnificent legacy, would be playing such a part, his hand would have withered before allowing his money to be used as it was in this instance. The last strike in' Queensland I wish to mention is that which took place at Mount Morgan. There 1,000 men took possession of the Mount Morgan mine, prevented the bosses from functioning in any way, and ordered that fires be drawn from the furnaces. Several of the bosses made an attempt to prevent the fires being drawn, because if that were done it meant a stoppage of the electric current, and throwing the works and township into darkness. But the strikers came upon them like a raging torrent, and threatened to throw them into a furnace if the fires were not drawn at once. The bosses naturally did nos relish the prospect of being thrown into a furnace, but they declined to draw the fires, and left that task to the strikers themselves. This strike was led by an extremist who had been at Mount Morgan for a short period only. He was a man of no account. There was no suggestion of any ballot, or decision being arrived at to strike. It- was absolutely a riot ; it was not a strike. As a result of the drawing of the fires, the electric light was cut off. The next thing was that this magnificent property, which had been of so much value to labour for over 40 years, caught on fire underground. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- Did it catch on fire, or was it deliberately set on fire? {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- If I were certain I would say straight out' what caused the fire, but, at any rate, I have a shrewd suspicion of the cause. Millions of gallons of water had to be poured into the- mine-. Every one knows the parlous time through which the Mount Morgan mine has passed during the last fouryears. The company has kept the mine going mostly foa- the sake of the employees, in the hope that it will be able to turn the corner,, but here it was faced with, the heavy expense of putting out a fire. The work of doing so ia practically accomplished now, or, at any rate, will be completed very soon.. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- Did the Governmenttake any action during that time? {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- No. Unfortunately, there were only two policemen in Mount Morgan at the time. They said, in effect, to the departmental heads, " We are powerless. You will just have to let them do what they bally well like." {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- Did not the Government pay an unemployment allowance to the strikers ? {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- I do not know. {: .speaker-KN7} ##### Senator Guthrie: -- How many were thrown out of employment?- {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- Before the strike there were from 1,600 to 1,700 men working on the mine, where to-day there are only 350 employed. The avowed object of the strike was to induce the company to pay the men a few extra shillings a week. This demand arose through the railway strike for the basic wage. As the miners at Mount Morgan had been averaging 32s. a shift, the foolishness of their move is very apparent. However, the men were not so much to blame. The trouble was caused by outside influences, and particularly by one man. I cannot remember his name for the moment, but he is an outandoutbolshevik. He and a few others were responsible for that disastrous strike. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- Yet we are told we must not deport a man like that. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- No. We must not even mention deportation. At almost every meeting I attended during the election campaign it was asserted that there were very few communists in Australia. The communist cry was held up a bogy. With our opponents, " bogy " is a favorite word. In this connexion, I should like to mention an experience I had. It will show what this "bogy" amounts to in some parts of Queensland. I was addressing an open-air meeting at Blackall. Because of insufficient notice our own supporters did not attend in any numbers, and as the meeting largely consisted of unemployed shearing hands, I had an exceptionally hostile reception. During the progress of the meeting five men distinctly declared that they were communists, and that communism wa3 the best thing for Australia, and they gloried in being communists. Their remarks were received with approbation by quite a number of those present. It showed, what I was well aware of, that communism ' is no "bogy" in Queensland. The numbei'3 of the communists may be small, but they are well spread throughout the State. My experience at Blackall was very useful to me in addressing subsequent meetings. ' I was able to talk of the men at Blackall who gloried in being communists. It is idle for Labour to disavow its connexion with communism. In any case, the disavowal comes after the election. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- It came before it. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- The honorable senator cannot tell me that. I repeat that it is idle for Labour to disavow its connexion with communism, because the main plank in the platform of Labour and communism is identical. Each party is striving to achieve the socialization of industry, and the means of production, and exchange. Labour contends that it will achieve these objectives by constitutional means. Some say it will take a long time to do so, and I think **Senator Hoare** said it would take 1,000 years. Others say that they_ want to achieve it in the smallest possible space of time. The . communists declare that they want to get it as quickly as possible by direct action, or, if necessary, by violence. In both cases it means the pooling of all wealth, and its administration, cither by a supreme economic council or by a dictatorship. It also means the wiping out of parliaments. The result under either party - Labour or Communist - will be the same. There will be the same dire catastrophe. When it is a question of dispossessing people of cherished possessions and institutions, for which the fight has been fought through all the ages, history will repeat itself. .Blood will be shed in defence of those cherished institutions and possessions. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- Just as people died in the recent bush fires in order to save their property. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- Yes. That is an excellent illustration. **Senator Gardiner** was absolutely wrong in attributing anything of a revolutionary tendency to the maritime . strike of 1890 or the bush workers' strike in Queensland in 1891. I am not too conversant with the cause of the maritime strike, but I know a good deal about the origin of the bush workers' strike. At any rate, I know that there was no revolutionary aspiration about either strike. In both cases it was a dispute between employers and employees, on the one side ' for preference to unionists, and on the other hand for freedom of contract. Revolution, to my mind, means the overthrow of government or the existing social scheme. **Senator Hoare** did me the compliment of calling me a revolutionary. He quoted from *Hansard,* but the very quotation itself plainly shows that my action was absolutely the reverse of what he tried to make it out to be. It showed that I was upholding law and order and methods for defending life and property when they were threatened. The extract of my remarks, as reproduced in *Hansard,* was fairly accurate, except that I did not use the word " regulars ", but spoke of trained forces, which might be regarded by. some as equivalent to " regulars." I do not complain on that score. My complaint is in regard to what was omitted from my remarks. Our friends opposite have a pernicious way of dealing with things of this kind. They publish portions of a man's remarks, and not the whole of them. My remarks, portion of which **Senator Hoare** quoted, were dealing with the upholding of law and order, and were uttered at a conference of employers held in Queensland over four years ago. It was an ordinary meeting, just like the unions hold. It was not open to the public, just as meetings of the unions arc not open to the public. There was a shorthand reporter taking a verbatim report for us ; but he proved to be a spy, and a dirty spy at that, because he gave a transcript of his notes to **Mr. Forgan** Smith, one of the Ministers in the Labour Government in Queensland. This gentleman took extracts here and there from the speakers' remarks, and arranged them in a way which made them .look rather awkward for the speakers ; and he had the extracts, without their context, published in the next morning's issue of the *Standard,* the Labour daily of Queensland. In turn, they were copied by other papers, and_so the news was disseminated throughout Australia. As a matter of fact, that conference was discussing an insurance scheme. Honorable senators from South Australia are familiar with a similar movement, which has been very successfully launched by the employers of their State. We had decided to form an insurance society to protect its members against monetary loss arising out of strikes; but I took the opportunity to mention the bigger aspect of the question, such as riots arising out of strikes, or revolutions, when life and property would be. endangered. I asked what machinery we had to cope with such crises, and suggested that it was highly desirable we should have the assistance of trained men, who could, be sworn, in as special constables - and armed if necessary - to supplement the police. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- When life and property were threatened. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- Yes. I was very particular to mention that, and I instanced an experience I had during the shearers' strike in 1891 in Queensland, when 75 mounted infantrymen resisted, and held back an assembly of 500 strikers. If the newspapers had published the whole of my remarks, I think I should have been applauded from one end of Queensland to the other, even by the Labour party. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- The honorable senator should have suggested arming the men with bottles, bars of iron, or pick handles. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- Possibly so. My opponent at the first election I contested for this Senate was **Mr. John** McDonald, editor of the *Daily Standard,* who in a very unsportsman-like manner gave a. garbled account of the discussion, and labelled me " Shoot-'em-down Thompson," by which title I am known in the Labour party to this day. In fact, at the last election my opponent, **Mr. Riordan,** went so far as to assert that I had advocated the ' use of machine guns to shoot down peaceful strikers. **Mr. McDonald** employed all the newspaper artillery at his command against me, but I am glad to say that I was able to beat him substantially. All this " stuff " had previously been sent to New South Wales to be used there for electioneering purposes. Fortunately, 1 heard of the move, and forwarded a true account of the matter to that State. The use of the garbled story proved to be a perfect boomerang, because **Sir George** Fuller was returned by a very substantial majority. At the recent Senate election the same misrepresentation was employed. Indeed, a pamphlet, to which I intend to refer, was circulated throughout Australia.. I thought that this misrepresentation was confined to Queensland until I received a communication from my wife, who was then residing in Victoria, intimating that she had noticed the pamphlet wrapped round a bar of .soap that she had purchased from a grocer. The pamphlet was headed " Fascismo," and stated, *inter alia: -* >Prime Minister Bruce recently said - " The time has arrived when a sort of dictatorship would be acceptable." Immediately following that quotation was the following reference to the proceedings at the so-called^ " secret " meeting of the Employers' Federation held in Brisbane four years ago : - >Nationalist **Senator Thompson** at .a recant secret meeting of the Queensland Employers' Federation said : - " Is there any machinery to-day by which- you can put your -hand on some reliable force to pit against .the forces of hooliganism? If you have a few regulars, it is wonderful what they can resist. I have seen 500 men in the shearers' strike held up by 75 mounted infantrymen." Even that quotation differs from **Senator Hoare's** rendering of it last week, and it' shows to what length misrepresentation can be carried. I did not use the word "hooliganism" at all. **Mr. Bowen** employed that term by way of intellection, but it has been attributed to me. The. pamphlet then proceeded - >Now, could Prime Minister Bruce possibly find a more loyal lictor to support him in any designs he may have on a dictatorship ? **Senator Thompson's** veiled threat is ' left to your own imagination. He is one of the " Fire low and lay 'em ' out " type. . The " hooligans " are evidently his opponents in politics. The term " Fire low and lay 'em 'out" was used in Victoria, I believe, many years ago., by Colonel Price, but the words were wrongly attributed to me. Senater Findley. - The honorable senator is " Shoot '-em and lay 'em out Thompson." {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -- No. They called me " Shoot 'em down Thompson." {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- I think the honorable senator has .come off very well. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator THOMPSON: -Perhaps so. The result of the circulation of that " tripe " through .Queensland was the return of myself and the other Senate candidates of .the Nationalist party by an unprecedented majority. That was the answer of the public Ito -those misrepresentations. I am glad that the bill deals in a very 'strict way with 'the matter of literature. In the window of .a shop at Cairns, where I saw a number of dirty foreigners sitting around a table, I noticed literature such as should not be circulated. I have also seen -literature of a most pernicious character in the Domain, in Sydney, and I .particularly appreciate that portion of the bill which proposes to deal with this evil. The measure is absolutely necessary, and I hope that it will he placed on the statute-book as early as possible- {: #subdebate-8-0-s2 .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator MCLACHLAN:
South Australia .- I trust that I shall not be considered to be unduly obtruding myself upon the attention of tie .Senate if, in addressing it for the first time, I offer a few observations concerning this measure, which appears to me. to be an instalment of the legislation promised at the recent election by the Bruce-Pag.e Government. The bill provides a num!ber of penalties for a number of offences. To some of these little or no objection is offered by the Opposition, and they call for little or no comment, but other punishments, which appear to me to be remarkably moderate, have been questioned by honorable senators opposite. On the whole, they are light. The power to arrest, which was criticized by one of the speakers on behalf of the Opposition, is conferred only in particular circumstances. It is a power that will be found to exist - and is exercised, I think - in every police measure of the several States. The provisions regarding unlawful associations are .in substance a reenactment of a measure which has already been law in this country, hut which expired by effluxion of time. I refer to the Unlawful Associations Act. I understand that no objection is offered by the Opposition to the r-e-enactment of those provisions; but there are clauses dealing with industrial disturbances to which strong exception has been taken,, as also to a couple of provisions for empowering the Attorney-General of the day -to deport persons under certain circumstances.. These clauses .are not directed -against industrial organizations .as such 5 they are -aimed at organizations or persons who do certain things. No reasonably minded person .can object to the punishment provided for the .offences set out in proposed new section 30J. The Governor-General is' authorized to proclaim the existence of a serious industrial disturbance, prejudicing or threatening trade or commerce with other countries or among- the States, and - >Any person who, during the operation of such Proclamation, takes part in or continues, or incites to, urges, aids, or encourages the taking part in, or continuance of, a lock-out or strike - > >in relation to employment in or in connexion with the transport of goods or the conveyance of passengers in trade or' commerce with1 other countries or among the States ; or > >in relation to employment in, or .in connexion with, the provision of any public service by. the Commonwealth or by any Department or public authority under the Commonwealth, shall bc guilty of an offence. . . . This is one of the- classes of offences to which the Opposition- takes exception on the ground that they should not be made a crime. Let us inquire what is the nature of these offences. They are certainly serious to the nation, and- some of them vitally affect the economic life of this country. It should be remembered that laws are intended to guard against what men may do, and not to trust to what they will do. The majority of the members of industrial organizations are moderates; in fact, we might describe them as radicals, and by no stretch of the imagination, according to my understanding of their real objective, as expounded by the Opposition, can- it be suggested that provisions dealing with offences of this nature* apply specially to the Labour industrialists of to-day. But to those whom this legislation touches, I can only say, " If the cap fits, you- must wear it.'' It is vital to the economic life of this country that legislation should be passed declaring these to be offences, if they are not already so* declared. If they are offences, the logic of the position is that there can be no- harm in giving statutory effect to them, as is frequently done by legislatures throughout the world. If they are already law, the bill merely re-declares the law in statutory form, so that he who runs mary read. I suggest to my honorable friends opposite that they may, in the not far distant future, experience a very beneficial effect upon the party to which they belong from the enactment of some of these provisions, to which, exception is taken by them to-day. **Senator Findley,** whose logic one cannot help admiring, treats the menace to be guarded against very airily indeed. He described the various suggestions of revolution as being mere piffle, and with alluring alliteration, he proceeded to denounce the measure in no uncertain terms as an attack upon all industrial unions. I should like to quote a speech by one of Labour's most illustrious leaders - the Bight Honorable **Sir Philip** Snowden, who, not so long ago. in England, declared1 his attitude on this very question about which honorable senators opposite express themselves so airily. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator Pearce: -- He was Chancellor of the Exchequer. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- He was Chancellor of the Exchequer in the British Labour Administration. Dealing with the intrusion of communistic doctrines into Great Britain, he said:- >A study of the official thesis- from which a little later I shall, with the indulgence of the Senate, quote a few extracts- and instructions of the Third International, makes the policy and proceedings of the communists in Great Britain-, and elsewhere, as clear as daylight. They are attempting, to- carry out their bolshevist" instructions faithfully. There is not. one of the instructions and methods outlined above which is not being practised in Great Britain, and other countries where there is a communist movement. He goes on to say: - >I do not agree in the least with those trade union and Labour leaders who say that the 'best policy is to ignore the communists-. On thecontrary, I believe that they have only to be exposed to- be rendered harmless. Yet our friends- opposite say that the best policy is to ignore this communistic d anger ; which every one realizes is in our midst. I shall endeavour, as I proceed1, to show that the recent happenings in Australia are consistent with only one condition of affairs, and. that is the adoption by the extreme section of the industrialists of the doctrines that are preached in the thesis of the Third International - a thesis that has been translated into every tongue. It is idle for honorable senators opposite to suggest that the doctrines of communism have not eaten their way into the Labour party and influenced the opinions of those who may be regarded as the more extreme section, when the fact has been established by occurrences! such as those related this afternoon by **Senator Thompson,** and evidences of it have been under our notice during the last few months. **Senator Findley,** who appears to me to adopt a remarkably moderate tone, is evidently convinced that no danger exists. Either that, or he is waiting to see what is going to happen. The Labour party is politically on the horns of a dilemma. It must either oust the communists and alienate their votes, or keep them within its ranks and lose the confidence of the people. That is the point upon which the last election in Australia turned. The Labour party, because of its association with the communists, lost the confidence of the people. It attempted to perform a balancing act; it desired to secure the communists' vote, whilst at the same time it spoke of expelling communists from its ranks. That balancing act failed then, and it is bound to fail in the future. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- The National party ought to stick to the communists; they were very good friends of yours. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- They are not friends of ours. The camouflaging suggestion that they are in the pay, or acting at the instigation, of the "National party, does not contain a grain of truth. Members of the Labour party talk in that strait) merely to keep up their own courage - to make the more moderate of their followers believe that the party is not associated with the communists, and is not influenced by them; but that, on the contrary, all these happenings in Australia have been prompted by their political opponents. Can it be said that **Senator Thompson, Senator Glasgow,** or any other Queensland senator, favoured the riots and turmoil that occurred in that State? Did the British ship-owners desire the turmoil which was associated with. the recent re,bellion - it was not a strike - for which Australia was chosen as the stage by these men from overseas, who regard this country as a happy hunting ground for their activities? I propose to show that the menace of communistic domination is a real one, and that such an attack against civilization as that which is fathered by Moscow to-day has never previously been launched. "We in Australia should be warned by what happened in Italy. Violence such as that which was perpetrated in that country when the communistic revolution took place can and will be replaced in any civilized community with well-ordered minds and courage only by a reactionary force such as rules that country to-day. We had a similar illustration in the German revolt. Communistic doctrines have been preached throughout the East. I had the opportunity only recently of ascertaining the quantity of propaganda on communistic lines, paid for by Russia - which is the home of the Marxian fallacy - that has been held up at Port Said. Not long ago **Mr. Winston** . Churchill, in an excellent speech, said that the whole of the communistic theory Avas based on the dreary fallacies of Karl Marx. Let us be warned by the British seamen's strike, which was not the strike of a union, or of an industrial body in Great Britain, but of the extreme section of an industrial body. Every one is convinced that that strikewas aimed at the British Empire, which is the great bulwark that to-day stands in the path of communism. Let us examine the methods that were employed in that strike, as well as in others. They were in keeping with the propaganda of the Communist party. In the main that propaganda is kept a secret, but at least one official document has been translated into almost every language, and it has been described as " the Bible of the communists." It sets out the methods of attack that should be employed. I draw the attention of honorable senators to the similarity between the job control that is exercised in the Australian shipping industry, the tendency towards violence, and the breaking of- contracts solemnly entered into, and the doctrines that are boldly preached in the communist " Bible," which has been circulating in Great Britain for a considerable time. It was sent from Moscow, via Germany, and sets out that the objective of communism is " the overthrow of capitalism, the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and of an international Soviet republic, for the complete elimination of classes, and the realization of socialism as the first step towards the communist commonwealth." That objective was emphasized by a writer in the *CommunistReview,* who said - >The workers have to clear their heads of the poisonous fumes of the " social peace " doctrine. The seizure of factories is advocated, and the workers are urged to prepare to make every factory a citadel of revolution. It is pointed out that the Labour party serves the ends of the communist party to a greater extent than any other political or industrial body. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- The National party has the communists now, and is using them. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- We use their mischievous doctrines only for the purpose of exposing them. It is utterly fallacious to suggest that the National . party would ever adopt the doctrines that are preached by the communists. One of the men who fomented the strike at the Wembley Exhibition that was attended by **Senator Wilson,** secured employment there, not in order to work, but to see- what trouble he could cause. The railway strike in England in 1924 is believed to be another illustration of the intrusion of the socialists into the trade union camp. The thesis further sets out - >The belief in the absolute value of binding contract and agreements between labour and capital . . . must be met *by* a resolute and keen resistance on the part of the revolutionary trade union movement. That is the doctrine which from time to time is practised in Australia. This interesting document goes on to say - >The war did not have, as its immediate consequence, a proletarian revolution, and the bourgeoisie has some grounds to register this fact as a great victory for itself. Only dullards can find consolation in the fact that, because the European proletariat did not succeed in overthrowing the bourgeoisie during the war, or immediately after it, this is an indication that the programme of the' Communist International has failed. The communist propaganda commenced in 1921, and it has never ceased. Listen to the tactics that are advocated in the conduct of strikes : - >Every large strike should not only be well prepared, but simultaneously with it there must be organized special detachments for the struggle against scabbing, andfor counteraction, as well as the provocative movement on the part of the White Guards' organization, encouraged by the bourgeoisie and the government. . . . The organization of a special strike militia and special defence de tachment's is a matter of life and death to the workers. "... The bourgeoisie relies . . . partly on the White Guard organizations and partly on the fact that the working class is scattered . . . but the greater the number of workers who join in the battle, the greater the fighting area, the more must the enemy divide and scatter his forces. The plan of campaign that is outlined in this communist thesis is worthy of some of our military leaders. This is what is preached : - >The tendency of reducing wages . . . should be met by the revolutionary trade unions in their endeavours to prevent the reduction in wages by turn in each separate concern, in order not to be defeated in parts. The workers engaged in the enterprise of public welfare, such as the mining, railroad, electric, gas concerns, and others, should be drawn in at once, in order that the struggle against the onslaughts of capital should touch the verynerve of the economic organization. All ways of resistance, from a separate intermittent strike up to a general strike embracing all large fundamental industries on a national scale are in such a case, not only advisable, but necessary. The undermining of the trade union movement is then advocated. I suggest that, whether successful or not, that is being attempted in Australia to-day. Whether the unions will be undermined ' by theintrusion of these communistic principles will depend upon the strength of the Labour movement in Australia. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- What would it matter to the honorable senator? {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -That seems to me to be an absolutely irresponsible statement, because my friend knows that from the National party on the one hand he would obtain something that was consonant with the principles of common sense; whilst from the Communist party on the other hand he would get proposals that would lead only to riot and revolution, turmoil and bloodshed. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- We might get them from either party; it would not matter to us where they came from. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- I am sorry to hear my honorable friend speak so distrustfully of us. This thesis proceeds as follows : - >Unity of action and organic co-ordination between the Communist party and the trade unions is the preliminary condition leading to success inthe struggle against capitalism. Is not that what the communists are seeking to accomplish in Australia to-day, as evidenced by the happenings to which so much reference has been made? I shall not quote at much greater length from this thesis, but there are one or two extracts which I think it my duty to -plane before the Senate. One deals with the future policy of the communists. Ir reads - >During the next epoch the principal task of all communists will be to concentrate their energy and perseverance on winning over to their side the majority of workers in all labour unions. The communists advocate the making of extreme demands in every case. The thesis says on this point - >The same should be done in connexion with unemployment, sickness, and other benefits of trade union organizations. The creation of fighting funds and the granting of strike j>ay are measures which, in themselves, are to be commended. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- What about the National Union fighting fund? {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- I wish that I had had some of it to help me to fight my battles. The thesis proceeds- >Therefore an opposition on principle against such activities would be ill advised. . . . In connexion with sick benefits, te, communists should insist on the abolition of the contributory system and of all binding conditions in connexion with all voluntary funds. If some of the trade union members are still anxious to secure such benefits by paying contributions, it would not do for ' us to simply prohibit such payments -for fear of being misunderstood. There is no doubt that the communist propaganda is cunningly conceived, with the view to placing the cloven hoof of communism firmly -on the trade unions of Australia. As I have shown, communists are not asked to disturb the existing order or to attract attention to themselves until they see a fair opportunity of stimulating and increasing any unrest. The propaganda is .aimed at getting the movement represented within trade unions by the nuclei system, which is, I think, fairly well understood. The members who form these nuclei intrude -themselves into the trade unions, with the object of increasing the spirit of .unrest which legitimate trade unions are feeling in these days. That pressure is being experienced in all callings and in all factories. Men who have no desire whatever to work in factories obtain employment in them simply for the purpose of spreading communist doctrines and principles. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- I suppose that is why they -sent you their " bible." {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- The honorable senator reminds me that I have not got their " bible." The quotations that I have given are taken from it, but the book itself was stolen from me by one of the communists while I was travelling home from the Old Land. {: .speaker-JXV} ##### Senator NEWLANDS:
SOUTH AUSTRALIA · ALP; NAT from 1917 -- They did not think it was safe in the -honorable senator's keeping ? {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- Perhaps not. I have quoted sufficient to show the nature of its contents. The object of the communists in our trade unions is to work quietly, and not attempt to create trouble until they have laid a -good foundation. Then they take every means in their power to preach and enforce t/heir nefarious doctrines. One gentleman who comments on these methods says - >It is a common argument that the com munists are so numerically weak that they will never be able to achieve their ends. That is what **Senator Needham** put up to us ; but the statement goes on - >The answer to that is that there are thousands of workers in this country who are too extreme for official trade union leaders, and who, while nominally remaining members of the Labour party, follow the extreme leaders who are in many cases secret Communists. Is that not a fact in Australia to-day ? {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- No. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- In England the communists have established the minority movement, and their attacks on the Boy .Scout movement B,ene referred to by **Senator Pearce.** They have attacked various other .desirable institutions {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- The Boy .Scout movement was attacked in this chamber last session. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- I am not a scout, nor have T.ever .been one, but it seems ito me that the scout movement is one of the finest organizations that we have for developing the. young, manhood of our country. I am reminded by the honorable senator's interjection that -the thesis from which I have been quoting refers to General **Sir Baden-Powell** as " Pimp Baden-Powell " - 'language which we need not consider any further. Are not the methods of the communists current in Australia to-day? Is not -their pressure being felt by many of our trade unionists? Are not' the happenings of the immediate past in keeping with communist doctrines and teaching ? I suggest :that, unless something is done speedily, the trade union movement .will get out of the control of moderates who, like my friends opposite, do not believe in communism. It must be disciplined, or itwill probably go under. The 'efforts of men like **Mr.. Theodore** to control it must be supported. I am reminded that **Mr. Theodore.,** who is reckoned to be one of Australia's most distinguished Labour leaders, said during the election campaign that the policy of the Bruce-Page Government was reasonable and rational. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- "When did he say that? {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- The news was telegraphed all over Australia. It was not wrapped round a bar of soap. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Wherever the honorable -senator got it. it is the usual lie. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator MCLACHLAN: -- We should not be surprised that **Mr. Theodore,** having made that remark about the policy of the Bruce-Page Government, has advised the Labour party in this country not to pursue the extreme policy that it has recently adopted. **Senator Ogden,** another leading Labour light, and **Senator Gardiner,** who. I am given to understand., is the strong man of the Labour party in the Sana-te. h-are both given it similar advice. **Mr. Lang,** .and that remarkably sane Labour man. **Mr. Loughlin,** both of New South Wales, have been preaching for some time that the Labour movement must return to moderation if it is to regain the place that it formerly held. But while it retains its present objective, it will not be able to dissociate itself from the doctrines propounded by the communists. Although feeble protests against industrial action are being made to-day by some Labour leaders, the Labour party is, in the opinion of many people, going headlong towards communism.. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- That will suit the Nationalists, so why worry? {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator MCLACHLAN: -It will not suit a very large section of industrialists who support the National party. Thank God, many industrialists in this country voted for the National .party at the last election. They did so because of the insane Moscovian methods that are being adopted by a large following in the Labour movement which reputable Labour leaders seem to be unable to control or check. How is Australia viewed by the outside world to-day ? What attitude do people abroad adopt respecting out industrial experiences of the last three years ? We have been urged to change our .conduct by many men who have visited this country on financial missions.. Our prestige is being lessened, we are told, because people are .saying that we .are becoming revolutionary. I do not think that we are; but there is a great danger of irresponsible persons forcing revolution upon us. There , can be little doubt that seriously detrimental effects will follow for Australia as a whole unless the extreme followers of . Labour are curbed and controlled.. If the present propaganda is allowed to go unchecked, it. is possible that the majority of the Labour party will become communistic. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- That is only the misrepresentation of the lying press that supports the National party. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator MCLACHLAN: -- In 'any case, it will have a serious effect upon our future development. It will stem the tide of money that .should flow into this country. If there is one thing we need more than another to stimulate development, it is that the financial magnates abroad shall have complete confidence -in our legislatures, and in the security that Ave offer them. There is no doubt that their confidence has been shaken by the breakneck speed with which we have rushed into industrial turmoil in the last few years. In referring to that matter, **Senator -Graham** complained that our arbitration methods were unsatisfactory.. He said that we needed speedy and cheap arbitration, and that our present system was choked by complicated legislation. I agree with trie honorable senator. Unsatisfactory industrial arbitration machinery is just as irksome to the employers as to the , employees. But no man can seriously suggest that this bill has anything to do with industrial arbitration. Its aim is to provide penalties for certain crimes. While **Senator Graham** may have good grounds for complaining about the complexity of our industrial arbitration system throughout Australia, be has no grounds whatever for opposing this measure on that account. The bill, in my opinion, contains nothing dangerous to any industrial union, but certain extremists may come within the ban of the . law. ' It cannot be denied that many workers are to-day guided, to their own detriment, by the extreme element in their midst. J do not propose to refer at length to the recent industrial troubles in Queensland and Western Australia. **Senator Thompson** drew attention to the actions of certain farmers in Queensland who sought to protect their property, and ensure its safe shipment. I would stress the point that those actions were not on a par with the happenings in Italy. I think we must all commend the farmers for what they did, but I would point out that the bill is designed to correct such an evil. After all, it is an evil that any body of men outside the lawful government of the country should feel compelled to take the law into their own hands in order to protect their interests, as the Queensland farmers ' did. Such action is wrong, and fundamentally unsound in principle. Law and order must be maintained in every community by the Government, and all steps that a Government may take to maintain it will undoubtedly have the support of the majority of the people. One step that this Government proposes to take to maintain law and order here is to place this penalizing measure upon the statute-book. If we allow what **Senator Thompson** has described to take place indiscriminately, we shall be substituting the rule of law for the rule of force. The provisions of this bill are calculated to maintain law and order, and to avoid the necessity for civilians to take the law into their own hands. After all, the civilian has no right to obtrude himself. It is the duty of the Government to maintain law, and civilians may only come into the matter when called upon by the Crown to do so. Every Government should be able to rely upon the support of its citizens in administering the law. There are two provisions relating to deportation for offences of- a very serious nature. These safeguards are based on the principle, no doubt, that laws act after crime and prevention before both. If a man does any of the things that are created offences under this bill, and which may be greatly to the detriment of the community, the AttorneyGeneral, following the conviction of the person concerned, will have power to deport. In this matter he - will merely discharge functions similar to those at present carried out by Attorneys-General in the various States. I cannot speak with certainty as regards the authority of the Attorney-General in New South Wales, but in most of the States the AttorneyGeneral takes the place of a grand jury, and sends a man to his trial. In the same way under this bill the Commonwealth Attorney-General takes the place of the. grand jury, and may send a man to his trial. In the bill there is no confusion of the judicial with the executive authority. If there were I would be the last to support it. I thoroughly endorse the statement made this afternoon by **Senator Payne.** It is competent for the Commonwealth Government to keep undesirables out of Australia, and certainly it is very desirable that, it should do go.- The only objection to this measure is that it may be somewhat hostile to Imperial policy. For my part I do not like to see what is being done every day in the week " in the various States, namely, men sentenced' by courts to terms of imprisonment as an alternative to leaving the State for some other part of the Commonwealth. This policy, in' my judgment, does not make for interstate amity. Each State should look after its own criminals. It seems to me that the arguments against deportation employed in the debate on this measure might with equal force be used against the practices of the various States in allowing convicted persons their freedom on the undertaking that they leave the State within a certain time. I should be sorry to see the Mother Country saddled with any more communists than are there at the present time; but I do not think such a state of affairs is likely to arise under this bill. It is the inalienable right of every country to rid itself of those persons whom it considers undesirable citizens. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- Under this bill a man who wishes to get a cheap trip to the other side of the world will declare himself to be a communist^ and he will get it. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- I do 'not agree with the honorable senator. I direct his attention to proposed new. subsection 30c, which prescribes the offences for which a man, upon conviction, may be deported. These offences include speeches or writings to advocate or encourage - {: type="a" start="a"} 0. The overthrow of the constitution of the Commonwealth by revolution or sabotage- Let me interpolate that the word " sabotage " used in that connexion seems to me to have a very clear meaning - {: type="a" start="b"} 0. The overthrow by force or violence of the established government of the Commonwealth or of a State or of any civilized country or of organized government; or 1. The destruction or injury of property of the Commonwealth or of property used in trade or commerce with other countries or among the States. Proposed new sub-section 30j deals with industrial disturbances, lookouts, and strikes. Their seriousness cannot be over-rated, because they may represent an attack on the economic efforts of the Commonwealth. Only a few months ago the Government of the United States of America refused to allow the communist member for Battersea in the British House of Commons to land, in company with a number of other members of the House of Commons who were on a visit to the United States as the guests of the nation. There is ample precedent for any action which the Commonwealth Government may take under this bill. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- What will happen if another country refuses to take a person who has been deported? {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator McLACHLAN: -- I believe that a few years ago a man who had been deported from Australia was kept on the high seas for two or three years, but it is an established custom for every country to be responsible for its nationals. I see no difficulty with regard to foreigners who may be deported under thisbill. There may be a little difficulty with regard to British subjects, but I have no doubt that they will be overcome. Would the honorable senator prefer the establishment of a penal settlement somewhere in the Pacific? It is more humane to return convicted persons to the country from which they came. I am quite satisfied that the Attorney-General will, under this bill, discharge his functions with that care which I think every occupant of the position has exercised up to the present. It should be our duty to support the Government in its efforts to free the country, and to free also the trade union movement of this disturbing element, which has done so much to interfere with our industrial liberty and dislocate the trade and commerce of the Commonwealth. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- The honorable senator appears to be very much concerned about the conduct of the trade union movement. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator MCLACHLAN: -- I should be lacking in my duty to this Parliament and to the country if I did not concern myself with the conduct of the trade union movement, which is such a potent factor for good in the Commonwealth, I can only regard the amendment submitted by the Leader of the Opposition **(Senator Gardiner)** as an assumption that the bill is an affront to right-thinking trade unionists. I can assure him that no such affront is intended. Penalties are provided only for persons who may be convicted of certain offences, which are clearly outlined in the bill.No objection can be taken to those acts being placed in the category of new offences, and I understand that no objection is taken. If they are offences against the law should they not be fittingly punished? Laws are the bulwark of our liberties; they defend the liberties of all. I support the measure in the belief that it will liberate Australia from an organized tyranny that has menaced it during the last few years. {: #subdebate-8-0-s3 .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN:
Tasmania .- I shall not speak at length, but I think I should indicate why I intend to support the bill before us to-day. When a similar measure was before the Senate last year, I spoke as a Labourite. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- Never in your life. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- **Senator McHugh's** presence in this chamber is a distinct indication that to-day a man must be elected to Parliament, not on his merits, but on the support accorded to him by a big political party. I spoke as a Labourite last year, and I am speaking as a Labourite to-day, notwithstanding the fact that a section - a very small section indeed- has branded me as a sort of political gipsy, and condemned me to wander in the wilderness. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- As a political Judas. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I am not a Judas, and I shall not accept the verdict of that small few, but shall appeal to the' electors for a vindication of my attitude. That, however, is by the way. I supported the Commonwealth Government when it asked for full power to deal with the unruly spirits who are parading this country; because I contend it is the duty of every publicspirited man in this community to protect its sacred democratic institutions - to preserve law and order, and to see that the customs ' of the country are observed. I saw that this was not not being: done. I saw that the authority of the Government was being defied, and the law of force substituted. A man who was not blind, or bitterly prejudiced, could not fail to see the evidence of this insubordination, which was stalking through the land. I saw the workers penalized and turned out of employment ; I saw the trade and commerce of this country being seriously threatened, as well as the sacred institutions and edifices of Labour, which were built up partly by my efforts, and by the self-sacrifice of the great men of the Labour movement who have gone before. **Senator McHugh** has never built anything, and he will not build anything ass long as he is here, because he can only re-echo parrot cries. I saw Labour Governments in power in every State but Victoria,calmly looking on, watching men invading ships, drawing fires, pulling the fire bars out, and defying the Government in the exercise of its authority or in the assertion of the law. I saw all these things happen. The Labour party also saw them happen, but they were too weak-kneed and too supine to raise their voices in protest, and protect the workers who were being penalized by the efforts of men who are, in some cases, nothing more than parasites living on the labours of their fellow men. Not only did Labour governments fail to assert their ministerial authority, but in this chamber we had the spectacle of Labour men defending these actions, or practically acquiescing in them by their silence, or their votes. That was the position confronting us last session, and we were asked to give our attention to it. I also saw the State of Tasmania, of which I am a representative, being penalized. I saw strikes occurring and communication between my State and the mainland being deliberately held up by the seamen. When the Labour party was asked on a motion moved in this chamber by **Senator Millen,** to assist in protecting Tasmania, every member of the party voted against it, and by doing so practically condoned the strikes that were holding up transport. I then made up my mind that I would take some action, and consequently Iwas found in this chamber during late night sittings supporting the Government in its proposal to seek power to deal with unruly spirits in our midst. I waited some time. I expected that my leader, the Leader of the Opposition, and other Labour leaders throughout Australia, would raise- their voices in protest against these things that were happening in our midst. I was hoping against hope that they would see the wisdom of saying that which would have done a good deal to prevent these troubles, and would, as a matter of fact, have saved them from the disaster which overtook them at the recent Federal elections. But they remained silent. Not one word did they utter, not one gesture did they make against those men who are despoiling our sacred institutions. The. issue at the recent Federal election was whether the Government should be supreme in the control ofthe affairs of this country, or whether some irresponsible individuals were to take charge as they were trying to do in some of the States. The issue was whether we should have constituted law and order, or dictation by irresponsible men who have practically no respect, for the -law. and no regard for those institutions under which we work and live. *Sitting suspended from 6.30 to8 p.m.* {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I was remarking, prior to the adjournment, that the issue before the electors in November last was whether we should have constitutional government or dicta ti on by an irresponsible outside section. The electors answered that question decisively, and furnished the Bruce Government with a mandate to give legislative effect to the wishes of the people. One or two honorable senators have stated that the election was won by misrepresentation by the Nationalist party. That is a ridiculous statement, because surely Labour had as much right and opportunity as its opponents to put its side of the case to the people. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- But Labour does not own the newspapers. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- Labour newspapers are published in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, and Tasmania, and I have observed that their influence always has been to hinder Labour at the elections rather than help it. Labour obtained victories in Tasmania before a Labour newspaper in Hobart, controlled by the Australian Workers Union, was established; but after its establishment we were no longer able to return a Labour government to the State Parliament. Immediately that newspaper went out of existence, however, **Mr. Lyons** was returned, with a .straight-out majority, as Premier of Tasmania. Labour members complain that the recent verdict of the electors was obtained by means of false representation. I maintain, however, that it was gained on the plain, unvarnished issue that was submitted to tho people. Labour men whom I know told me that they did not intend to vote for the Labour party at the last election because they could no longer trust it to fight the insubordinate elements .abroad in the community. They said that they were afraid to put Labour in power in the Federal Parliament for fear that it would be too weak-kneed to assert proper authority. When I was requested to assist the Labour candidates, I refused to take the platform with any Labour man, because I would have felt bound to justify my attitude in the Senate, and that would have involved a condemnation of the Labour party. That I had refused to assist Labour candidates at the election was one of the charges laid against me at the recent conference of thu party in Launceston. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- It is not the first time the honorable senator has " squibbed." {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I have never ".squibbed." I shall face the electors and take responsibility for my actions. I am not a mere gramophone to record the opinions of irresponsible persons outside Parliament. I decide my own line of action, and I am willing to accept responsibility for it. It waa really the Australian Workers Onion that expelled me from the Labour party. It has been the worst influence in Tasmania so far as the industrial movement in that State is concerned. . {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- It secured an arbitration award that put the working men of Tasmania on a better basis than they had ever previously enjoyed. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I have been a unionist all my life. I belonged to the old miners' organization before the Australian Workers Union came into existence. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- The honorable senator has now become wealthy, and has left the movement. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- Will **Senator McHugh-** remain quiet ? That organization looked after the material interests of its members by peaceful means. If a member met with an accident he received accident benefits. If he fell sick, officers of the organization visited him on Sundays, and saw that there was nothing wanting in his home that could be supplied by his fellow members. When a member met with misfortune, a subscription listwas circulated. But the great organization of which **Senator Barnes** is president has done nothing that has resulted in benefits to the miners. It abolished the sick benefits, and destroyed all the humanitarian principles of which the miners boasted in the old days. It went even further than that. At a time when there was likely to be trouble at Mount Lyell, it took up an attitude that was more likely to precipitate a disturbance there than to prevent it. As a member of the Labour party, I went to Mount Lyell, which was a portion of my State constituency, aud told the men not to take any notice of their union officials. I was called a traitor for daring to interfere, and I was threatened with defeat at the then ensuing elections. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- How much did the honorable senator get for that? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I am sorry that the honorable senator is so small in mind as to be unable to rise above petty suspicion. However, I defeated the organization, and I was largely instrumental in preventing industrial trouble at Mount Lyell. A few months later an election' took place, and when I appealed to the miners in my constituency, I was the only Labour candidate in Tasmania who. was returned at the top of the poll. A higher vote was recorded for me by these very miners then than at any previous election. Since then the Australian Workers Union has prepared for me the pickle which culminated in my expulsion from the 'Labour party. Nevertheless, I am able to fight my own battle, and I defy the Australian Workers Union, or any other organization, to beat me at the poll. I can win in spite of them. I intend to honour the mandate given by the people by voting for this bill. I supported a similar measure last year, and the electors plainly indicated that they expected the Bruce ; Government to give effect to the promise made on the hustings. To the first portion of the measure, which deals with unlawful associations, no objection is taken; but the second part, which deals with those who attempt to turn an industrial dispute into revolutionary channels, has created considerable discussion. Every honorable senator will agree that law and order -must be upheld. We must force people to obey our laws, observe our customs, and respect constituted authority. Will any honorable senator opposite deny that it is the duty of every public man to see that that is done? Then, surely, no honorable senator can logically refuse to give full powers . to the Government to enforce obedience to those laws and customs. I have been told that we should deal with the disturbers of industrial peace under our existing laws. I am only a layman, but I do not think our penal code prescribes a penalty for such offences as those specified in the bill. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Is it a crime for a man to attempt to improve his position ? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- No ; but it is useless for the honorable senator to draw a red herring across the trail. I have sufficient confidence in honorable senators on both sides to believe that they would not attempt to interfere where legitimate effort was being made to improve the conditions of the workers. Does **Senator Needham** suggest that- a Minister would dare to abuse a power such as this bill proposes to give? {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Yes. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I have greater faith than that in human nature. T believe that we have a changed public opinion to-day, and that if we were to abolish our protective" industrial enactments, public opinion would be so strong that no exploitation of the working classes would be allowed. I am not like **Senator McHugh,** who is in danger of contracting spinal paralysis if work is mentioned to him. I have worked all my life. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- The honorable senator has never worked honestly in his life. He never gave his '.' boss " a fair *go-* {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I do not mind what **Senator McHugh** says. There, is no danger of the exploitation of the masses. I always listen to **Senator Findley** with respect and attention. He is logical and earnest, and means what he says. He does not see these dangers. If he did, I believe that he would have sufficient courage to tackle them. So would **Senator Needham.** Whether they do not see them, or, knowing that they exist, refuse to suggest a remedy, they would be a danger to the community if they were vested with power and authority, and failed to appreciate these dangers. During the recent elections I refused to speak from the platform of a Labour candidate. I did not make one speech, but I sent to the press a statement in which I explained my attitude in this Senate, and the reason for the faith that was in me. I did not want to see Labour in power at this juncture. I told that to the Labour conference, and also mentioned it to a number of Labourites in Tasmania. I believe that the Labour party can do just as useful and effective work in Opposition as it could if it sat upon the Government, benches. The sole objective of the Labour party to-day appears to be to obtain possession of the treasury bench. It has lost its old ideals. Let us cast our minds back. to the old Labour movement and consider its legislative enactments, such as those which brought into existence the Royal Australian Navy, our trained citizen soldiery, and Other great bulwarks of democracy. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- And the Geelong woollen mills. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That is an interjection which I would expect to come from **Senator McHugh.** In those days the Labour party was public-spirited. Today it has not a constructive programme, but is satisfied with an attempt to discredit its political opponents. It is endeavouring to persuade the public that only from the treasury bench can it render good public service. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Did not the honorable senator occupy a place on the treasury bench in Tasmania? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I did. I could have been ' there to-day had I cared to avail myself of the opportunity ' that was presented to me. The Labour party to-day does not possess the objectives that it had in the early days of the movement. On the contrary, it is actuated to a greater extent by the base motive of securing ministerial office. I say now, as I said whilst I was in the ranks of the Labour party, that I care not what government is in power, so long as it is responsible for proper administration and good legislation. I do not think that there is any present danger of an outrage upon the democratic aspirations of the people of this Commonwealth. The Labour party objects to the clause in the bill that relates to industrial disturbances. I ask Labour members to recall the events that took place during the police strike in Melbourne a few years ago. I ' was in this city at that time. It approached very nearly to a dangerous revolution, and some men were killed. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- Was that the fault of the Labour party? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I did not make any such insinuation. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- 'Because of that strike, the present members of the Police Force are receiving what the former members unsuccessfully demanded for three years. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I am not discussing that aspect at the moment. I am pointing out that it is possible for a strike to develop into a dangerous revolutionary movement. {: .speaker-KPQ} ##### Senator Kingsmill: -- The welfare of the people is of no concern so long as a few people get more money ! {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator Barnes: -- Some individuals cannot suffer an injustice everlastingly. That, I suppose, is what creates revolutions. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- In 1921 a strike occurred amongst the miners in South Africa, and it developed into a revolutionary movement. The miners placed machine-guns on points of vantage. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- What government was in power? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That does not matter. There was the danger of an up-, rising amongst the natives, and some blood was shed. Had not a strong man, in the person of General Smuts, to whom I lift my hat as one of the great empire builders, been in power, there would have been a dangerous revolution, and possibly a great deal more blood would have been shed. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Did not the Government call out the military forces? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- It was compelled to do sp. Some of the revolutionary leaders were shot. We do not go so far as that in this bill. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- But you will. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- Oh, no! There is provision for the deportation in certain circumstances of persons who were not horn in Australia, and for a term of imprisonment for those who were. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- You will shoot them down if you get the chance. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- If I thought **Senator Needham** believed that, I should be prompted to say that he has no right to a place in a legislative chamber such as this, or, indeed, in any other. I do not think that he believes it. But let me pursue the argument upon which I had entered. Revolution must be prevented whether it results from the leaders of au unlawful association or develops from an industrial dispute, which may have been started in the first place for legitimate reasons; and any government would fail in its duty if it neglected to take measures to prevent revolution and the destruction of those things which we hold dear. **Senator Barwell** said the other day that Labour must be as blind as a bat. In addition to being blind, it is deaf to those things which it ought to hear. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- It is not dumb, unfortunately. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- It is dumb when it ought to speak, and it shouts aloud when it should remain silent, That is the fault which I found with it. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Does the honorable senator believe in majority rule? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I do. That is why I am supporting this bill. The Labour party is to-day refusing to admit communists to its ranks. That is the result of a spasm which seized it subsequent to the election. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- The Labour party in South Australia expelled a communist long before the elections. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I stood at this table and implored Labour to speak what was in its mind, and thus save itself from defeat at the elections. It is not only blind and deaf, it is also dull-witted. Had I been leader of the Labour party, do honorable senators think that **Mr. Bruce** would have won the last election? A good Labour leader at that crisis would have left the right honorable gentleman and his followers high and dry upon a rock-bound coast, to perish politically. My sympathy for Senators Needham and Findley was my reason for not supporting the Labour party at those elections. What a terrible calamity it would have been if, by some unfortunate accident, **Senator Findley** had found himself sitting on the ministerial side of the House! His life would have been' made miserable. When **Mr. Walsh** spoke, he would have had to obey. He would have had to go to Sydney to bow the knee to **Mr. Garden.** He could not have run this country as it should be run. I would have a greater respect for members of the Labour party if they would sometimes give utterance to their real thoughts. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- For how long has the honorable senator been the saviour of mankind ? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- Had I commenced earlier, I would have saved the honorable senator. I worked in the Labour movement when he was a mere stripling. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Because the honorable senator is much older than I am. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I occupied every office that it was possible for the Labour movement to give me. I object to Labour members imputing motives to me. Apparently they cannot give credit for honesty of purpose. I am abetter representative of the Labour movement than are many of those who are actively associated with it to-day. It is not necessary for one to go fo church every day in order tq be a Christian. Neither is it necessary for me to be associated with an organization in order to- be a true Labourite. I have been a Labourite during the whole of my life, and I will continue to be so to the end, because my children have to earn their living by the sweat of their brow, and if they do not work they will not eat. I have a high regard for honest service. I want to- preach the doctrine of hard work, honest effort, and love of avocation. The present-day Labour movement teaches the exact opposite to that. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Is the labourer worthy of his hire? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -Yes. I was not contradicting that great principle. I was pointing out that while the Labour party is expelling communists from its ranks, representatives of the party meet those men in a back lane after dart and say to them, " Take no notice of what we did in conference to-day, we had to do it to please the public." **Mr. Tom** Walsh, whom I do not know personally, is opposed to the White Australia policy, but still claims that he is a member of the Labour party. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- **Senator Ogden** is also opposed to the White Australia policy, for he voted in favour of allowing black-labour ships to trade to Tasmanian ports. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- It is absolutely incorrect that I am opposed to the White Australia policy, and I can afford to disregard the accusation. If it were true, I should not be a member of the Senate. Is there a man on the Government side of the Senate who does not believe in a White Australia ? {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- There is; **Senator Barwell.** {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I believe that **Senator Barwell** is as strongly in favour of a' White Australia as **Senator Needham** himself is. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- **Senator Needham** knows that I am, and so do other honorable senators opposite. They are not honest in the matter; that is the whole trouble. {: #subdebate-8-0-s4 .speaker-KLS} ##### The PRESIDENT (Senator the Hon T Givens:
QUEENSLAND -- That has nothing whatever to do with the bill. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I am sorry that I was drawn away from the subject. I was about to point out that, although **Mr. Tom** Walsh is an avowed opponent of the White Australia policy, and ridicules the efforts of the Labour party, he is allowed to retain his membership of it. According to a paragraph in yesterday's *Herald,* **Mr. Walsh** was asked, " Are you a member of the Communist party?" He replied - >I am not. I am a member of the Labour party, and a strong supporter of it. While living in Melbourne I was a member of the Sandringham branch,, and now I am a member of the Willoughby branch in New South Wales. I have been a member of the Labour party for many years. That seems to annoy some people. I can be expelled from the Labour party because I dared, last year, to vote for the deportation provisions of the Immigration Bill; but **Mr. Tom** Walsh, who is an opponent of the White Australia policy, and ridicules the efforts of the party generally, can be taken to its bosom. Some honorable senators have said that there are not many communists in Australia. That may be so, but many persons in the community, while possibly not active members of the Communist party, are doing its work. The communist declares that he believes in the abolition of what he calls the capitalistic system - a system, let us remember, that is based upon love of possession, and begins in the cradle, only to end in the grave. Honorable senators opposite have just as strong capitalistic inclinations as anybody else. Their human nature is not different from that of others. We should all become capitalists quickly if we could. The communist would substitute for the capitalistic system another based upon the control of industry by the proletariat. How does he propose to set up his social order ? He tells us that he will do it by the payment of high wages, and the reduction of the hours of work and of production, and so he is white-anting the Labour movement. I believe in high wages and, within limits, in short hours of labour. The communist's advice to the working man is: "Do not do too much work; do as little as you possibly can for' the capitalist." The adoption of his policy would so greatly increase the cost of production that the possibility of carrying on commercial enterprises profitably would be totally destroyed. The communist desires affairs to be controlled by the proletariat, which is another name for himself , instead of by properlyconstitutedgovernment as we know it to-day. He has preached his doctrine day in and day out, until it. has become to him almost a gospel. In. passing, may I say that I do not believe in. the 44-hour week, and I have said so on the public platform. I am against it because it will increase the cost of production, and, in fact, kill the goose that lays the golden egg.. I believe in the 48-hour week. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- Various government institutions have fixed 44 hours, as a week's, work. Is- the honorable senator opposed to that? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I do not believe it is necessary to reduce working hours to 44 a week. If any reduction of the working hours per week is justifiable-, it is in order that the hours per day may be short ened. But those who have propounded the 44-hour week policy still cram eight hours into the working day. All they are anxious about is to get another day off a week. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- And some of the men who work 44 hours a. week take week-end contracts, and so keep other men out of a job. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That is so. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- The 44-hour week is established by law and the honorable senator claims to be a respecter of the law. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- So I am; but surely it is quite competent for me to disagree with the law? The 44-hour week was established by law in New South Wales by a Government that, in my opinion, is working absolutely under communistic dictation. {: .speaker-JXZ} ##### Senator Duncan: -- In some of its own public utilities it does not observe the 44- hour week.. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- What is the first duty of the public man ? Is it to look after one section of the community, or to have regard for the prosperity of the whole State ? It is certainly not his duty, in my opinion, to pander to a section. The adoption of the 44-hour week in New South Wales is crippling industry, limiting employment, adding to the cost of living- {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- And lessening production. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That is so; it is penalizing the very men that the Labour party professes to assist. It is reacting upon the wage-earners in the community. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- And giving an unfair trading advantage to other States. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That is so. These may be only a few active members of the communist party in Australia ; but large numbers of people are quietly engaged in communistic propaganda. I would not think of punishing a straight-out Labour leader or a reputable trade union officer; nor do I think any honorable senator would . {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- So long as he is subservient to the Nationalist party. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That is another remark that may be allowed to pass without comment. Even if honorable senators behind the Government looked at the matter from a purely selfish stand-point, they would not risk acting vindictively towards trade union leaders. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator Pearce: -- The National party has had the power to do that, if it wished to do it, for the last ten years, and it has not done it in a single instance. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- That is so. It is a great pity that members of the Labour party are not allowed to speak or vote independently. To-day they are absolutely shackled, and we can hear the rattle of their chains. **Senator Findley** may smile, but it is so. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- I heard that talk about the rattle of the chains twenty years ago. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- If **Senator Findley** met a burglar on his way home at night he would, in his child-like simplicity, say to him, " Do not interfere with me, dear brother ;" and he would probably offer to carry the swag. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- A burglar would be more likely to become friendly with **Senator Ogden,** who believes in long hours. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I believe that the only way to success is by hard work, honest service, -and pride in avocation. {: .speaker-KPQ} ##### Senator Kingsmill: -- No wonder the Labour party threw, the honorable senator out. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- One of the charges levelled- against me at the Tasmanian Labour conference was that I supported deportation. The majority of the members of the conference said that they did not believe in it, but they pronounced a verdict against me that was far worse than deportation. They expelled me from the movement. If they had the power they would starve me, and follow me to the grave. They would even persecute me more than that, for they would persecute my children and my children's children. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- And this is the party that talks about victimization ! {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- A member of the conference, who was an old colleague and friend of mine for many years, dared to speak in my favour, and a member of the Australian Workers Union, that great organization which shelters within its ranks persons guilty of ballot-box scandals, and so on, interjected, " You will go out, too." The intolerance of the Labour movement to those who disagree with its policy may be compared with the intolerance of a certain protectionist newspaper in Collins-street to the man who holds freetrade views. The one is just as deep and bitter as the other. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Did not the honorable senator invite expulsion? I think he asked for it time after time as plainly as a man could. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I am sure that I never did in my life. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- The honorable senator did by his actions if not by his words. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- He was never a Labour man. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- If a Labour man is expected to be deaf and mute, and a mere automaton that moves when the strings are pulled, then I am not one. Every man in the Labour movement should have some independence of spirit and the right to express his individual opinion. If the Labour movement is not wide enough to grant these privileges, then it is bound to fail. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- Why did the honorable senator sign the Labour party's pledge and then break it? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I have never broken any pledge of the Labour party, and I have never failed to support any plank of its platform. I was not charged with the breaking of any pledge. {: .speaker-KTH} ##### Senator McHugh: -- But the honorable senator broke his pledge. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- I think I have delayed the Senate long enough already. There was a lot more that I intended to say, but the interjections have caused me to digress. I intend to support the measure. As a law-abiding citizen and a good democrat, I shall obey the mandate of the people. I am not charging the Government with misrepresentation at the recent election. A good illustration of misrepresentation was furnished by **Senator Thompson,** who quoted an election circular issued under authority of the Labour movement. A considerable amount of rubbish was rushed out a3 propaganda during the campaign. The Labour party had no policy except, perhaps, to establish State ships for Tasmania, which I did not believe in, because the State Labour Government had already sold its ships and the Commonwealth Government was then trying to sell its vessels. {: .speaker-KRZ} ##### Senator Lynch: -- The State Government sold its ships and no one was expelled from the Labour party. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- Though the State Labour Government lost over £100,000, and the Commonwealth has lost millions of pounds over shipping, **Mr. Charlton,** the leader of the Labour party, came along with a ridiculous proposal to build more ships for use in the Tasmanian service. {: .speaker-KOZ} ##### Senator Hoare: -- Does the honorable senator say that the people of Australia have lost money on the Commonwealth shipping venture? Did not the Commonwealth ships keep down freight rates between Australia and London? {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator OGDEN: -- The manager of the Commonwealth Line stated that he was not out to cut freights against existing companies, so the honorable senator's argument falls to the ground. I intend to support the bill, believing that the people have asked for it, that sensible unionists will welcome it, and that it is necessary to vest in the Government the power asked for. I am certain that the people of Australia will be behind any government, whether National or Labour, that protects our social institutions by insisting on the observance of law and order, and the punishment of all those who attempt to break down, by unconstitutional methods, those edifices which have been built up by immense effort. I shall take the full responsibility for my action, and, when the time comes, I shall confidently appeal to the people for a renewal of their confidence in me. **Senator BARNES** (Victoria) [8.50].- I have listened, perhaps, with a certain amount of impatience, to a great deal that has been said in this debate. I doubt if all honorable senators who are supporting the bill are really in favour of it, or are really under the impression that this country is confronted with grave danger because of the actions of certain industrial ' organizations. The Government, of course, will pass the bill, which will have about as much effect on the industrial forces of Australia as a mosquito would have on a steam hammer. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- The honorable senator would not be opposing it so bitterly if he thought it would have no effect. {: #subdebate-8-0-s5 .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I am opposing it because I object to its drastic provisions, and because I believe that already we have ample power to deal with any citizens who contravene our laws. Unfortunately, the Government has not the courage to deal with them. I direct attention to the provisions of the Arbitration Act. Section 5 reads - >When any person is convicted of an offence . against any provision of this act, for which a pecuniary penalty is provided, the Court before which he is convicted may direct that the defendant shall not continue, or repeat the offence, under pain of imprisonment, and if, thereafter, the defendant continues or repeats the offence, he shall be liable, in addition to the pecuniary penalty for the offence, to imprisonment for any period not exceeding three months. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- Can the court en- . force the provisions of that act? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Of course, it can. I speak from personal experience. Because I took part in a strike that was perfectly justifiable, I was haled before the court, and. fined£ 100, and told that, if I offended again, I should be sent to jail. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- Some trade unions are not registered under the Arbitration Act, {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- That does not matter. If an industrial dispute arises, there is power to proclaim the union concerned an organization for the purposes of the act, and so deal with it. **Mr. Walsh,** the president of the Seamen's Union, who was brought into such prominence recently, told the court, when the ship-owners moved for the deregistration of the Seamen's Union, that he did not care what course the court adopted. The union was deregistered, but if it had continued the dispute it could have been proclaimed an organization for the purposes of the Arbitration Act, and its members could not have escaped the penalties provided. I regard this bill as the most disgraceful that has ever been brought before any legislature. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- If the Government already has the power to deal with industrial disturbances, why does the honorable senator object to the bill ? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I object to the power of deportation being placed in the hands of the Attorney-General. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- Is that all? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- No. I object to many other provisions. The Government, instead of endeavouring to deport industrial leaders or others who commit breaches of the law, should deal with them in this country. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- Put them on stone ships ? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Coercion laws and oppressive legislation of other countries have always failed in their purpose, and such legislation has failed, and will fail, here. It was impossible to keep the British race in subjection. To the credit of the Mother Country, be it said that refugees and rebels from all the countries of Europe found safe haven in Great Britain. {: .speaker-JRT} ##### Senator Cox: -- And the honorable senator, as a good Australian, would embrace them. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I am ready to embrace every honest man. Let me repeat that the Arbitration Act properly administered can protect the people of this country even from what **Senator Barwell** advocates, namely, a Black Australia. The Minister **(Senator Pearce)** expressed "apprehension as to certain developments in Soviet Russia, and at the distribution of communistic literature that is paid for, so it is alleged, by the Russian Government. When the Minister was asked why the Government allowed so many Russians to enter Australia, he replied that they were people who left Russia because they were opposed to sovietism and to the communists. The soviet system of government in Russia was preceded by a form of government infinitely worse in every respect, so far as the people were concerned. "Red-Russia" became a byword among the nations of the world, because of crimes perpetrated under the rule of the Czars, and I remember reading that, during the Crimean War, the late Queen Victoria declared that she stood " on the proudest gem in the Russian .tyrant's crown." But I have been diverted from my purpose. I set out just now to show that the Arbitration Act gives the Government ample power to deal with all industrial disturbances. It provides a fine of £1,000 for certain offences. It goes further. If I, .as president of the Australian Workers Union, commit an offence, the court may order my union to relieve me of my office and expel me from the union. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator Mclachlan: -- What are the offences dealt with under that bill? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Breaches of awards, for instance, are dealt with by it. {: .speaker-KTR} ##### Senator Mclachlan: -- This bill has nothing to do with breaches of awards. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- But it deals with industrial offences. I suppose the Government contemplates that the Arbitration Court will still go on making awards, or does it propose to send *v&* back to the dark days when we were fighting and spending our money to get the Arbitration Act on the statute-book and thus avoid strikes ? The Australian Workers Union spent hundreds of thousands of pounds for that purpose. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- The Arbitration Act does not cover everything that is contained in the bill now before us. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- It deals with industrial offences, but does not provide for deportation. I admit that the Arbitration Act sadly needs amending, and I think it can be done quite easily and safely with benefit to all. {: .speaker-JRT} ##### Senator Cox: -- We are doing it now. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- You are doing nothing of the sort. All you are doing is to play to the old women you frightened at the last election with the bogy of communism. You said that the communists were going to run the country. You got behind you the press, the shipping combine, all the people who are behind the Geelong Woollen Mills, and the Kidmans and the Jowetts, who dodge taxation and spend their money trying to give you a 'boost in the press and to frighten a lot of honest people. As president of ,an organization that embraces about 135,000 members, I claim to have first-hand knowledge of -all industrial activities in Australia. I am not aware that any of the 'officers of the Australian Workers Union are .communists, but I know there .are others who claim to be communists, and :seek to have their ideas carried into effect. I have no great objection to that kind of man. There would be no progress in this world if those who have ideas which they think would .benefit the human race were prevented from putting them forward. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- The .honorable senator did not think so when I intervened at Mount Lyell. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- The impression of my organization was that you were in the employ of the company, and your actions vindicated all we thought about you. The **PRESIDENT (.Senator the Hon. T. Givens)** . - The honorable senator must address the Chair. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I apologize. Since that episode I have had very good ground foi; lack of confidence, in **Senator Ogden.** What would happen if all that honorable senators really fear from the communists should come about? **Senator McLachlan** has quoted what he describes as the Communist Bible. I have not seenor heard of this bible before, but I gather from what the honorable senator said that all that these people want is to make every one work, and to see that every man gets a share of the return from his labours. If these people had the opportunity to give effect, to that principle in Australia, would -it do half as' much harm as the introduction of black labour, as advocated by **Senator Barwell,** accompanied by all the evils from which America is now suffering?' {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- The honorable senator knows that that statement is untrue. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- If the honorable senator says that my statement' that he advocated the introduction of black labour is untrue,. I must accept his correction, but I have not yet heard him contradict it. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- The honorable senator could have, heard me contradict it in this chamber. I have done so.. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Can I accept the honorable senator's assurance that he disclaims his advocacy of a black Australia? {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- There is no truth in that statement concerning myself. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Then I am sorry I said anything about it. Formerly the workers were everlastingly trusting some one else to do something for them. Like the kiddie at the mother's knee, innocently praying for a great blessing from somewhere, and possibly getting it, they have been steadily returning to this Parliament men who advocate what honorable senators opposite are advocating to-day. I refer to those legislators who brought the kanakas from the South Seas and polluted our continent. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- It was **Sir Samuel** Griffith who got rid of the kanakas. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- It was **Sir Samuel** Griffith who said that he hoped that he would see the- day when the working people would eat grass. Kanaka labour was abolished by the Federal Parliament. At that time control was not in the hands of Labour, but Labour, though small in numbers, held the balance of power, and therefore could compel the government of the day to take that step. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- It was done by **Sir Samuel** Griffith prior to Federation. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- The kanaka waa not got rid of until the Commonwealth Parliament took action. {: .speaker-KPQ} ##### Senator Kingsmill: -- Apparently the honorable senator would- only get a thirdclass pass in history. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Possibly, but the honorable senator would like- to forget a lot of modern history. I do not profess to- have the knowledge of ancient history that has inspired my friend, but I have a knowledge of some modern history that hag inspired me. I have a full knowledge of the trial's of the people from whom I have sprung, trials which have imbued them with the desire to send some of their own kind to a place like this, where laws are made affecting the lives of every person in the community. As a result, some great legislation has been passed, of concern to the moneyed interests of not only this country, but also other parts of the world. The communist movement in Russia is regarded by some people as a menace, and to capitalists in other parts of the world the Labour legislation of Australia - legislation providing for the establishment of the Commonwealth Bank, the Australian Commonwealth Line of Steamers, and the Woollen Mills - look like the ghosts honorable senators opposite see in Russia to-day. {: .speaker-K0F} ##### Senator Pearce: -- The honorable senator has forgotten to mention compulsory military training. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- It is true that the Labour party believed in compulsory military training, hut we must ask ourselves, " What good has this thing done for us? If it is of no use to us, why do we need to keep it?" The Labour legislation of Australia has frightened the capitalists of the world just as much as Russia is frightening some people in Australia today. When Australia, as the result of a measure brought in by a Labour' administration, was able to establish and run a national bank on nothing, a thing never heard- of before, financiers abroad were alarmed. Therefore, the capitalists of other countries have taken good care to get busy with their propaganda, and I am sorry to say that my friends opposite have fallen to it. Labour knew what it had to face at the last election. It knew how the people had been robbed by the sale of the woollen mills, how the people's bank had been emasculated by the present Government, how supporters of the Government, who. spent their money, in all1 probability, in helping the Government to get back into power, were allowed to escape the payment of hundreds of thousands of pounds in taxation, and how men who would send our sailors down to the sea in coffin ships could be allowed to escape even their contractual obligations. The last matter was discussed to-day in my unavoidable absence. These men contracted to build six wooden ships for the Commonwealth, and where there was supposed to be a through bolt dummy bolts were inserted > {: .speaker-KLS} ##### The PRESIDENT (Senator the Hon T Givens: -- Order! That matter was discussed and disposed of this afternoon. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- These are all industrial matters covered by this bill. {: #subdebate-8-0-s6 .speaker-10000} ##### The PRESIDENT: -- I remind the honorable senator that in this chamber, as in all parliaments, a subject having been discussed and disposed of cannot be revived in the same session. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- In that case I am sorry I was not' here this afternoon, because I should have had a word or two to say about those coffin ships. {: .speaker-10000} ##### The PRESIDENT: -- That is not my fault. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I know that. Byrepressive legislation of the character of this bill, we shall get nowhere. I am sorry for those who think that they can screw down the democratic thought of the people of this country by coercive- measures like this. History should teach them. that it will not be tolerated by people of the British race. "Without any reflection upon the older land, I claim that- Australia is the best part of the British Empire, because, in the first place, it was populated by the boldest, bravest, and best elements from Great Britain and Ireland, who fought to give to their offspring in Australia the things they had failed to get in their own land. For that reason, I regard Australia as the brightest jewel in the British crown to-day. Honorable senators should not think that legislation of this character will suppress the democratic thought of the young people- of Australia. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- There is no thought of doing that. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I cannot imagine any good being done for Australia by this legislation. Is it the idea of honorable senators that the liberties of men in their unions should be suppressed As far back as 1843 the coercion acts against trade unionism were wiped off the statute-book of Great Britain. {: .speaker-K1P} ##### Senator Sir Henry Barwell: -- This bill will not do what the honorable senator suggests it will do. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- It will go very close to doing it. Otherwise, where is the need for it? Is it merely to carry out a promise made to the electors ? Honorable senators claim that they have a mandate from the people to deport certain individuals. I do not believe that the Government was advised .-that the law would allow it to deport any one in the circumstances in which, it attempted to deport two individuals last .year. I think that most members of the Labour party were satisfied that the Government was, as it were, pulling the country's leg. I cannot believe that the Solicitor-General, **Sir Robert** Garran, advised the Government that effect could be given to that part of the act' under which certain people were to bs deported. I regarded it as a mere election dodge to play on the people. It probably influenced thousands of votes. The Government knew it was telling lies, but in order to appear reasonably respectable,- it comes along now with a new bill, saying, " We dic1 not have the necessary power under the bill passed last session, but we shall get it under this measure, and we shall deport these persons if we get a chance to do so." I doubt very much whether the . Government will be allowed to go that far. Some honorable senators who are lawyers may have looked into the question, and probably they can speak with some authority in regard to it, but I, being a layman, cannot. Nevertheless, I doubt whether the Government would be allowed to deport a Britisher to the Old Country. {: .speaker-KOJ} ##### Senator H Hays: -- Some Irishmen were sent back to Great Britain- from Australia. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- Similar action *was* taken in New Zealand, too. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- The British Government would probably object to the deportation of good citizens. {: .speaker-K8P} ##### Senator Thompson: -- Waa that the view that the honorable senator took of Lyons, who was deported from New Zealand to Australia? {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- That was the view that the British people took when, during an agricultural strike there many years ago, seven persons were deported to Australia. Although but a small percentage of the people of the Old Country then enjoyed the franchise, public opinion was so strongly opposed to this action that those men had to be brought back from Australia. {: .speaker-JRT} ##### Senator Cox: -- Great Britain deports men every day. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- Of course it does when there is good reason for it. No Government, for instance, could be expected to admit a man who was known to be a criminal. {: .speaker-JRT} ##### Senator Cox: -- We woke' up to your friend Paul Freeman. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- He wa3 forced to sweep the Seven Seas, like the Flying Dutchman. I believe he was robbed of 50 tons of ore. No wonder he was deported by your Government. No doubt the Government will succeed in passing this bill. It has a mandate from the Employers Federation, and any argument that could be presented by the Opposition would be of no avail. I can assure Ministers, however, that coercion by means of this measure will not affect my own union, or any other. If an attempt is made to put the industrial provisions of the measure into operation there will be such an outburst of disapproval that the Go- .vernment will be swept from power. **Senator Ogden** made some reflections upon my union to which I feel bound to reply. My organization has acted generously. It has fought against unjust laws, and it has striven to establish laws that it considers just. The honorable senator reflected upon it, on the' ground that some of its members had" secured his dismissal from the Labour party. I do not know the . details of the case, but, in defence of my organization, I may say that I know enough of **Senator Ogden** to justify his expulsion from any industrial body. {: .speaker-KPQ} ##### Senator Kingsmill: -- Not so much in defence of that body as in appreciation of **Senator Ogden** ! {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- If a big organization has done something for the bene fit of itself and the rest of the community, I am justified in saying something in its defence. I have no personal grudge against **Senator Ogden;** but- as a responsible officer of the biggest union in this country, I feel that I should defend it from unjust attack. I regret that the necessity has now arisen. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- I stated that- the Australian Workers Union gave no advantage to the miners when it took over the old miners' organization. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I admit that the miners' organization did much to benefit its members; but the day came when it could no longer fight their battles, and it came to the Australian Workers Union, on crutches, without a shilling. My union paid its debts, as it has done in the case of every organization that has joined .the Australian Workers Union. The miners came in at their own request. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- The miners' organization had no debts. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- There the honorable senator is wrong. The miners were good members, but their subscriptions to my union scarcely met their share of the cost of conducting the organization. This body has 135,000 members - men between the ages of eighteen and 40 years - and they are: the flower of Australia. It is estimated that 40,000 members served in the late war. If a couple of hundred members go on strike without the authority of the organization, their action is not supported ; but if their grievance has been considered by the union, and their cause is regarded as just, the union fights for them. {: .speaker-KPQ} ##### Senator Kingsmill: -- Then the honorable senator has nothing to fear from this bill. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- We do not fear it; and would not do so if it were ten times as bad as it is. In any case, it would be impossible to. deport 135,000 men. If I, or the general' secretary of my organization, were deported, I am afraid that there would be a great deal' of trouble. {: .speaker-JRT} ##### Senator Cox: -- The honorable senator is a good Australian. There would be no need to deport him. {: .speaker-K1L} ##### Senator BARNES: -- I am proud of being an Australian. All I can do is to lodge my protest against' this outrageous measure. No doubt it will be handed down to posterity as an iniquitous Crimes Bill. It is certainly a crime that it was ever introduced. . {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN:
WESTERN AUSTRALIA · NAT -brockman (Western Australia)[9. 27]. - During the course of the debate it has been stated that there is no occasion for legislation of this nature, and that there is ample power under existing laws to deal with any industrial disturbance that may arise in this country. I challenged **Senator Barnes** yesterday to produce authority for such an assertion, and to-night he has quoted section 5 of the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Act. which states - >When anyperson is convicted of an offence against anyprovision of this act, for which a pecuniary penalty is provided, the Court before which he is convicted may direct that the defendant shall not continue or repeat the offence under pain of imprisonment, and if thereafter the defendant continues or repeats the offence, he shall be liable, in addition to the pecuniary penalty for the offence, to imprisonment for any period not exceeding three months. It is necessary to turn to other sections of the act to ascertain the nature of variousoffences for which penalties may be imposed. Some of these offences are mentioned in Part II.. and some in the miscellaneous sections. In Part II. a penalty is provided for those participating in lockouts or strikes. What has that matter to do with this bill? A further penalty is provided in the case of lockouts and strikes by persons or organizations affected by awards. What has that to do with this bill ? There is a penalty for organizations ordering their members, whether employers or employees, to refuse to offer or accept employment. Again I ask the same question. There are penalties provided for persons injuring an employee or employer on account of industrial action. All tie penalties under the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Act relate to matters that are purely industrial ; but the bill only very remotely touches industrial matters. Theproposed new section 30a provides - {: type="1" start="1"} 0. The following are hereby declared to be unlawful associations, namely : - {: type="a" start="a"} 0. Any body of persons, incorporated or unincorporated, which by its constitution or propaganda or otherwise advocates or encourages - {: type="i" start="i"} 0. The overthrow of the Constitution of the Commonwealth by revolution or sabotage. 1. The overthrow by force or violence of the established government of the Commonwealth or of a State or of any other civilized country or of organized government. Does **Senator Barnes** or any other member of the Opposition suggest that those can be dealt with under the Arbitration Act? Of course they cannot. Do they suggest that they ought not to be dealt with and punished? Presumably they do, because they tell us that this bill should not be placed upon the statute-book. Let us turn to the proposed new section 30j, to which **Senator Needham** has taken such strong exception. It provides - 30j. - (1.) If at any time the GovernorGeneral is of opinion that there exists in Australia a serious industrial disturbance prejudicing or threatening trade or commerce with other countries or among the States, he may make a Proclamation to that effect, which Proclamation shall be and remain in operation for the purposes of this section until it 'is revoked. (2.) Any person who, during the operation of such Proclamation, takes part in or continues, or incites to, urges, aids, or encourages the taking part : in, or continuance of, a lockout or strike, shall be guilty of an offence. **Senator Needham** suggested in his speech, and repeated to-night, that that is aimed at trade unionists. Nothing of the kind ! Any one of the 700,000 working men and women who do not belong to trade unions, any one of the 728,000 who do, any employer, any member of the Civil Service, any member of Parliament, may be affected by that particular provision. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- Has the honorable senator ever heard of an industrial disturbance that was unconnected with a trade organization ? {: #subdebate-8-0-s7 .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN: -- Yes. The honorable senator is evidently not acquainted with the history of the industrial movement in Australia. {: .speaker-JYX} ##### Senator Findley: -- I have been in it for a longer period than the honorable sena tor. {: #subdebate-8-0-s8 .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN:
WESTERN AUSTRALIA · NAT -BROCKMAN.- The honorable senator has learnt less about it in that long period than I have during the short period that I have been in it. The Arbitration Act has a very limited application even to industrial matters. I remind honorable senators opposite that the power of the Commonwealth is restricted to strikes and industrialdisturbances that extend beyond the limits of any oneState; it has no authority or power to deal with an industrial disturbance that is confined to one State. The consequence is that the Commonwealth Arbitration Court has control over only 136,000 of the total of 728,000 unionists, to say nothing of the 700,000 persons who do not come within the jurisdiction of any industrial court in Australia. The provisions of the bill will apply to every person in Australia, not merely to a small section of the community. They will not apply specifically to trade unionists, although any trade unionist or labour leader who contravenes them after the bill has become law will fall within the scope of their operations. If they are subject to the provisions that relate to deportation, presumably they will be deported. {: .speaker-JZR} ##### Senator Ogden: -- If they are not Australianborn. {: .speaker-JXJ} ##### Senator Needham: -- That is where a foul distinction has been made. {: .speaker-JXP} ##### Senator DRAKE-BROCKMAN: -- I rose merely for the purpose of replying immediately to the absurd suggestion of **Senator Barnes** that already there -was ample provision to deal with those offences that are created by the bill. ' Having done that, I shall be content for to-night. I ask leave to continue my remarks on the resumption of the debate. Leave granted; debate adjourned. Senate adjourned at 9.37 p.m.

Cite as: Australia, Senate, Debates, 10 March 1926, viewed 22 October 2017, <>.