31st Parliament, 4th Session

L007 - Tue 25 Mar 1980 / Mar 25 mar 1980

The House resumed at 8 p.m.


Mr. Speaker: When we rose at six o’clock it was my understanding the member for Riverdale was talking about de Grassi Street.

Mr. Renwick: Mr. Speaker, I was awaiting the opportunity when you were in the chair -- not out of any disrespect for the deputy -- to express to you my congratulations on the way in which you continued to handle the vexed questions of the procedures of this House. We still have a long way to go in procedural matters in the assembly to make it the kind of effective body that we wish, but a good deal of the progress that has been made -- I may say, although others may disagree -- is in the way in which you administer the affairs of the House under its rules in an even-handed manner. I want to extend my congratulations to you.

I only have one suggestion -- I know that the rules are not terribly adequate -- about the problems of question period and the way in which it’s conducted. There’s a significant element of frustration in the assembly at the present time about the way in which the question period is conducted. I know the problems and I know you, sir, know the problems as well as, if not better than, any of the rest of us in the House. But there has to be some method by which the number of questions is increased and the opportunity for participation by members of the assembly in question period is opened up.

I noticed -- and I don’t often keep track of these things -- on one day since this new session started that 40 minutes had gone by before there was an opportunity for a person other than the leaders of the parties to address a question, all of which are of equal concern to the particular members.

I don’t know the answer to the problem but I think we must, in a very real sense, rely on you to make certain that that strange rule that the ministry can say whatever they want, however long a period it may take, and may answer the question or not answer the question, or talk about some other topic, is one under which only you, in your direct and, I may say, without being contradictory, diplomatic way try to deal with those questions as they arise in the assembly.

I must say that the way in which the affairs of the committee of the whole House were dealt with in the last session and will be dealt with in this session by your deputy and chairman of the committee of the whole House is a source of considerable satisfaction to those of us who labour in this particular chamber.

Mr. Speaker, I have a number of matters that I want to deal with. I took the opportunity of speaking immediately after my leader because I knew that some of my colleagues weren’t ready to proceed and therefore I will be able to speak at some length without being subject to any contradiction by any members of my party that I’m taking up too much time. Those members who wish to spend the evening with me are quite welcome to be here, but I do have seven or eight matters. It may be that my spirit will flag or fail at some point and I may have to cut it short and save it for some other occasion.

In the course of the evening I want to deal with half a dozen matters, some of them related to my riding; but, as someone said to me earlier today, Riverdale is only a microcosm of the whole province, so in the sense that I may speak about matters which appear to be of a local and private nature related to Riverdale, I know they will relate in many ways to concerns which people have in other ridings and in other parts of the province.

There are also two or three other areas of general concern that I want to bring to the attention of the House. Without further ado I propose to start.

In October 1979, the Minister of the Environment (Mr. Parrott) made a statement in the assembly with respect to the vexed question of the Canada Metal Company Limited plant and the degree of pollution in the air and the harmful effects of that. On October 29, the minister stood in his place and made the statement which ultimately led, a week or two later, to the issuing of an order against Canada Metal which was by consent agreed to. It provides for compliance by the company with a series of obligations imposed on it with respect to the extent and degree of pollution in the area.

One of the matters I wanted to deal with this evening was a question that I put to him that day. I refer to the debates of October 29; I said to the minister, at page 3930:

“By way of a supplementary question, and because the minister referred in his statement to the health concerns in the area with respect to this plant: Given that studies have clearly indicated that relatively low doses of lead affect the mental processes of children in their ability to deal with words and to pay attention, and that a continuing consistent effect of exposure to lead is a disturbance of the capacity to pay attention and therefore of the ability to learn, will the minister, in association with his colleague the Minister of Health (Mr. Timbrell), institute in the area of Riverdale a project scientifically and medically established for the purpose of conducting the kinds of surveys under the responsibility of this government which will determine this question over the next period of two, three, four, or five years if necessary, as to whether or not that plant, even meeting the requirements of the standards of the government, is nevertheless a hazard to the children in that area because of the studies which have been conducted...?”

The minister replied:

“I’ll answer very briefly, and not quite directly, the question put in the first instance.

“Certainly if there are tests required now, as I said in my statement, we are more than prepared to have that done. However, I realize the question was more on long-term effect. I would like to consult with the Minister of Health, because I believe that kind of study should be done under the auspices of the Minister of Health as a public health survey; therefore, I would like to consult with him prior to making that reply here in the House.”

The minister -- and this is not by way of criticism -- has not seen fit to reply to that question other than the laconic way in which he replied to it on the day I first raised it. I have had a continuing concern in the area of Riverdale and the area adjacent to the Canada Metal plant that harm is being done, unknown to us, to the children in the area because of the effect of the lead pollution.

When the company asked me if I wanted that plant closed, I said, “No, I don’t want that plant closed, provided I can be satisfied it is not a health hazard in the area.” To this date I have no such assurance of the extent and degree of lead pollution.

Let us assume for the moment that the company now complies accurately and completely with the control order which is placed against it; let us make all of those assumptions and we have a watch committee in the area that is attempting to monitor the compliance by the company with that control order. I have raised the question clearly with the company, I have endeavoured to raise it clearly with the union involved within the plant, and I have tried, on occasion, to raise it clearly within the community -- the extent and degree of the concern which I have about the low-level effect of lead, particularly on children in the area, because of studies which have been conducted.

I do not anticipate that I am going to get very much co-operation unless I raise again and again, in this House and wherever else I have the opportunity, this question until the ingrained attitudes in various areas related to this problem and the vested interests concerned are prepared at least to consider the need for this kind of objective study.

8:10 p.m.

I have had the opportunity to have some review made of the work which has been done in this area. As far back as April 11, 1979, there was a meeting in Riverdale at which the president and the senior officers of the company, members from the South Riverdale Community Health Centre, members of the local union in the plant, representatives from the elected members in the various levels of government and members of the community were present to discuss this matter. At that time, I tried in a layman’s way to make a presentation about the results of one study, which has become known as the Needleman study and which was reported in March 1979. It studied the effect of low-level lead on children with respect to their learning capacity and behavioural distortions.

I was very pleased to see in the latest issues of the Ward 8 and Ward 7 news, the two local newspapers serving Ward 8 and Ward 7 in Toronto which comprise between them all of the riding of Riverdale and a goodly part of the riding of St. David, that the particular statement I made and distributed on that occasion was published verbatim along with some current information about Canada Metal. Those two newspapers are bringing the kind of potential hazard inherent in the operation of that plant to the attention of the public again, in order to raise the level of awareness of the community. I want to have the assurance that the kind of study which is necessary will be done to determine this vexed question, even if it takes two, three, four or five years.

I want to refer to the particular work that has been done on my behalf so I can clearly place before the assembly the kind of problem to which I refer and, therefore, to speak for a few minutes about low-level exposure to lead. Let me make a distinction. People talk about environmental lead in order to separate it from industrial pollution or contamination from a specific source. What I am speaking about in the area of Riverdale is a level of environmental lead coupled with lead emissions from that plant, to which collectively I will refer to as environmental lead without making any subtle distinctions between the two.

The effects of high exposure to lead are readily apparent, but the effects of low-level exposure remain in question. The absence of overt signs of lead poisoning is no reason to assume that low-level dosages are not harmful. One researcher, Dr. Jane S. Lin-Fu, in an article published in the New England Journal of Medicine in March 1972 and entitled “Undue Absorption of Lead among Children: A New Look at an Old Problem,” stated:

“Because all recognized effects of lead in the body are harmful and the individual responses vary, it is a considerable leap to conclude that there is a threshold below which damage does not occur. The threshold may be useful in predicting a point below which certain clinical symptoms do not appear, but there is no guarantee that damage does not occur below this level. Lead exposure levels can never be reduced to zero, because there are so many different sources of lead in the environment. Consequently, a breakpoint in the continuum of exposure at which one can definitely say that injury has taken place must be determined. This problem has been obvious to researchers for several years, but an answer does not yet exist.”

The study of the effects of lead exposure has a long history, but little real progress was achieved until very recently.

In 1924, a medical investigator stated that lead is not only more toxic to the young and pre-adolescent than to adults and the old throughout the vertebrate kingdom, but also the effects produced by the metal are general in the young and local in the adult. In 1972, Dr. Jane Lin-Fu commented that “in the past four and a half decades since this statement was made, little progress has been made in the understanding of the toxic effects of lead in humans, particularly young children.”

The year 1974 saw a change in the research of the effects of environmental lead. In 1974, the effects of environmental lead came into question in several areas of the United States. The Shoshone project was initiated in response to public pressure by the state government of Idaho and Bunker Hill, the company emitting the lead.

The study concluded: “At the present time, and in the best of our judgement, we do not feel any permanent clinical impairment or illness has occurred in the children. Further, it is not likely to occur in the future due to this particular exposure.”

This is from a report in the Manchester Guardian late last year: “The results of this project were generally accepted, but recent events have brought the reliability of these results into question. Dr. Philip Landrigan, the senior official assigned to the Shoshone study, now contends that it followed questionable scientific methodology that caused the results to underestimate the possible lead problems in children.”

In addition, other more reliable studies have called for a re-examination of the acceptable exposure levels to lead. These studies include those conducted by Needleman and company, and Winneke, both of which were published in 1979.

In the past, studies such as the Shoshone project have been neglectful of certain principles employed in good experimental design. For example, most studies have used blood-lead levels to determine exposure. Blood-lead levels are limited in their usefulness because they provide an indication of current or recent levels of exposure only. In assessing the effects of long-term exposure, the concentration of lead in bones, teeth or hair provides the only accurate measure. Blood level, or FEP -- that is, free eythroyte protoporphyrin -- levels, reflect only recent exposure as they return to normal levels, even though exposure was excessive.

Past studies have also defined high-level groups geographically in terms of proximity to the plant, rather than by the actual amount of lead in the body. This method of group division fails to take into consideration the individual variations within the population. For example, greater variation exists in ingestion rates and tolerance levels. Numerous studies have also failed to match adequately the control and experimental groups for other variables such as socio-economic status, causing the effects of lead to remain undetected.

The Needleman study, a study done in the New England states which found obvious effects of low-level lead exposure, was superior to previous studies because the authors recognized existing deficiencies in experimental design, including those which I have already mentioned, resulting in a much more valid study.

The actual clinical effects of low-level exposures to lead are nonspecific and difficult to interpret. In addition, damage caused by lead may not be immediately apparent.

The effects of lead exposure in children are markedly different from those in adults. Those who are most prone to injury are the newborn and the very young.

8:20 p.m.

The varied effects of early exposure to low levels of lead generally fall into two categories, diminished learning and behavioural changes. Symptoms of diminished learning ability appear in verbal performance and auditory processing. Behavioural changes manifest themselves in decreased attention span, irritability and apathy. Given these most recent findings, it is evident that further intensive research must continue and steps to eliminate damaging levels of environmental lead must be taken.

Action in the form of a long-term study is needed in the Riverdale area. At present, the board of health presumes to be monitoring adequately the levels of exposure to lead through blood clinics for children. These blood clinics determine recent exposure to lead through FEP tests but, as previously mentioned, they are inadequate for determining long-term effects.

At the present time, the clinics are held on a voluntary basis, and the turnout is consistently low. Both these factors make it highly improbable that an accurate representation of the community is being obtained. The voluntary nature of the clinics ensures that only the most informed concerned individuals tend to take their children to the clinic. These persons tend to represent those who are more aware of these kinds of particular concerns.

Recent studies have shown that nutrition, for example, has a great effect on lead absorption. Those who are at least likely to be well nourished, and consequently the most affected by lead exposure, represent the group that may well be the least likely to attend the clinics. The low turnouts at the clinics also lead one to question whether the community is adequately represented in numbers alone.

All of the above arrangements point to the need for a long-term study where lead levels could be monitored from the time of birth onward, and periodic dentine-lead levels could be examined. Several tests to measure both intelligence levels and behavioural patterns would accompany any dentine-lead level tests in order to establish whether damage was occurring in children. This study would also provide an accurate representation of the Riverdale community, something that is not being accomplished at the present time. If it is determined that low lead levels in the area are in any way damaging, this concrete evidence would establish the need to remove the Canada Metal Company from the area.

In an article published in Nature in January 1980, dealing with the exposure to lead in childhood and the persisting effects -- let me just quote from it: “The fact is that the overexposure to lead of young children will have the greatest potential economic effects through increased requirements for care in later life in those most seriously affected and by diminution of intellectual potential. Children are inevitably the unwitting victims of adults’ use of lead, especially in industrialized communities and in areas of heavy traffic.”

In substance, what I am asking the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Environment to undertake, in conjunction with the facilities at the University of Toronto and with the co-operation of the Toronto Board of Health, working closely with the community facilities available in Riverdale -- the South Riverdale Community Health Centre, the Riverdale Socio-Legal Services and other interested community bodies in that area -- is to work out a scientifically acceptable methodology by which it will be possible, over a period of time, by investigations with carefully selected control groups and test groups, to make certain and to come to some conclusions as to whether the lead level in the area of Riverdale will be affecting the children with respect to their learning capacities and with respect to their general behaviour as people as they grow up to participate in the community.

I said earlier that in a sense Riverdale is a microcosm of this problem. There are other areas in the city and there are other areas in Canada and there are other areas in North America where this is a problem. If this study were conducted in the way in which I am urging that it be conducted, we could make a significant and valuable contribution in order to advance the knowledge that we must have to determine whether the children are being deleteriously affected by this exposure.

I think it is an urgent need of government. I trust that there will be not too great an obstacle to overcome in persuading the government to undertake that particular kind of study. It is absolutely essential. I and my colleagues who represent the area, as well as the people who live in the area, do not want to find some years down the road that the fears which we have expressed and arc concerned about in Riverdale are found to be justified in some other place, and that the children in the Riverdale area have had this exposure and have had the effects of that exposure and had to live with it throughout their years.

Let us find out once and for all whether it is possible to tolerate, in a residential area such as the Riverdale riding, the existence of a plant, no matter how well intentioned and no matter how long established, in such close proximity to the world in which people move and live, and whether it will, of necessity, be necessary to consider what we don’t want to consider: the necessity of closing that plant. I do believe, with good will, that particular problem can be solved and we may very well achieve the result which I wish to achieve and which I know many others associated with me in the area want to achieve as well.

We need the co-operation of all levels of government. We particularly need here the expressed interest and concern of the Minister of Health and of the Minister of the Environment. I trust that at some point the two ministers will take the opportunity to read what I have said and to try to come to some determination about that matter.

I turn now to another one of these vexed questions related to plant closings that were affected within industrialized parts of Ontario. Earlier this year MacMillan Bloedel Limited, the large conglomerate transnational pulp and paper and lumber company, purchased the machinery and equipment of the Continental Can plant in the south part of the city of Toronto adjacent to the riding of Riverdale. The actual plant is in the riding of St. David, and I have sent on to the member for St. David (Mrs. Scrivener), as I have to a number of others, the facts and figures as we know them with respect to that plant.

I don’t pretend to know the answers to the question. One hundred and thirty-four jobs are at stake. I gave to the Minister of Labour (Mr. Elgie) the breakdown of the 134 men who are employed in that plant, some of whom, maybe all, may not have an opportunity to continue their employment. The breakdown would indicate the average age of that work force is 43 and the median average length of service is something like 19 years. So there are a significant number of men in their late 40s and older who have had service in that plant of 20 years or more, some of them going up to 30, 35 and 40 years.

I know of no way, except by the intervention of government, that decisions of corporate bodies such as MacMillan Bloedel can be brought into some relationship with the public interest unless we here in this assembly pass the kind of laws that are required to make certain government has adequate notice of these intentions to rationalize industry by the acquisition of plants, the consolidation of their processes and the disruption of the traditional labour forces.

8:30 p.m.

In this particular instance, it was only because the union was going to appear before the executive committee of the city council that at the same time a notification was made by the company to the Minister of Industry and Tourism (Mr. Grossman). The only reason that was made, I am certain, is that the matter had become, or was about to become, public. An approach was also made to the Minister of Labour with respect to this particular plant.

Despite the best efforts of the elected representative, there is going to be no change in the corporate decision to close down that particular portion of the plant. What the net effect will be I do not know. I am simply saying that I have written to the chairman and chief executive officer of MacMillan Bloedel in Vancouver. I have had a reply from the second person in the organization and a telephone call from Vancouver by the person in charge of the container operations of the whole of the MacMillan Bloedel operation.

Today I met with Mayor Sewell and Alderman Beavis from Ward 8, and Alderman Johnston was present. We tried to discuss with representatives of MacMillan Bloedel in this area what was taking place. There is a joint committee of the company and Local 492 of the Canadian Paperworkers Union to try to work out some solution to the problem. But there is no doubt that plant is going to close; that there will be some form of melding of that plant into the Rexdale operations of MacMillan Bloedel which, I understand, they recently acquired from Abitibi. There may be some possibility that Continental Can will expand in the area of the plant that is being vacated, but some time down the road some of those persons in that plant who have been there for a long period of time are going to have their work careers totally disrupted.

When I was talking with them at that meeting today, I said there must be a role for the Ontario Minister of Labour to participate in that joint committee, assuming, as I do, that the union would be prepared to have a participation and assuming, as I believe the company indicated today, that it would be prepared to have a place, so that the public interest can be seen with respect to the future of the 134 men in that plant.

I am too pessimistic or too realistic, after the experience we had on the closing of the Dunlop plant in Riverdale riding years ago, to expect anything great to happen. But an assertion of the public awareness and the public concern will, I am sure, make certain that the corporate behaviour of a company such as MacMillan Bloedel takes into account the concern of the public for what is happening to the work force, in this case the 134 men.

I would trust at some point the Minister of Labour would introduce into the assembly further amendments to the Employment Standards Act which would require companies to give notice of intention to close down plants at as great a distance of time from the actual closure as is possible, to give an opportunity to establish tripartite committees to deal with the problems of the work force on such closures, made up of representatives of the company, representatives of the workers in the plant and a representative from the Minister of Labour.

I am quite certain Canada Manpower is also involved in it. If they wish to have a four-way committee to deal with these kinds of problems, well and good. All I am saying is that there is a public interest to be served, a public interest to be recognized and a public posture to be taken by the Ministry of Labour in those kinds of plant shutdowns.

We all know that rationalizations in industry take place but the effect on the working force must be one of the prime considerations. I think it’s fair to say that in many instances it is not one of the primary considerations, when one company acquires the operations of another plant and then proceeds to merge their activities and their production and it results in a work loss.

Those are matters which deserve concern, and we have not had any amendments to the Employment Standards Act for some eight or 10 years. It was the closing of the Dunlop plant which precipitated some notice provisions in that act. I think it’s about time now, during a difficult time for the economy of the province, for the public interest to be asserted in that field by some form of tripartite or four-party committee to deal with the effects of closures of plants on the working force that is subject to that kind of disruption and dislocation.

I want to turn now to a topic on which I do not claim any particular expertise but which I think it is most important the House be aware of. I have been concerned for some years about the validity of Treaty No. 9. That is the treaty with respect to the Indian native communities in the northern part of the province. In a sense this province was a party to the treaty, although it was via a third-party arrangement that there occurred the acquisition of the whole of the vast hinterland of northern Ontario.

In my view, that treaty was close to fraudulent if not fraudulent. I think the balance of interest in that treaty was so disproportionate that the native communities were seriously disadvantaged. It happens to be the case that the whole of the law of England, the common law of this province, was not at that time, nor indeed is it at this time, modern in the sense that we understand the nature of the aboriginal title of the native peoples in the province.

One of the things that I would like to do at some time when I have the opportunity is to find some way to challenge, in the courts if necessary, the validity of Treaty No. 9 and what is happening to the native communities in the northern part of this province.

We all know that the association of chiefs in Treaty No. 9, the Grand Council of Treaty No. 9, has been engaged in interminable negotiations for years with the government of Ontario and the government at Ottawa with respect to the exploration and understanding and settlement of the rights of the Indian communities.

So that someone will not think that these rights of the native peoples are being dreamt up out of whole cloth and that they do not exist in law and that they have no structure in the law of the province because of the work which has been done on the question of aboriginal rights, I want to draw to members’ attention -- as it was drawn to my attention by Mr. Blenus Wright in the Ministry of the Attorney General because of a mutual interest we have -- the Bear Island question related to that strange northern development that was to take place at Maple Mountain.

8:40 p.m.

The Bear Island Foundation and a number of the Indians in that area filed a caution against the title to the land around the Maple Mountain area. I simply want members to know that lawsuit continues to this day. I don’t know how many years it has taken, but I believe they have finished the examinations for discovery or will have them finished very soon. The matter is likely to go to trial at some point in time. There is serious question about whether there is any title in Ontario to the particular land in question.

Certainly the matters are going to have to go to the court, and the kinds of questions that are going to be raised are similar to those that were raised in one of the federal courts in another part of Canada.

I want to take the time of the House to indicate the nature in law of the aboriginal rights of the native peoples in Canada. It does not take too much imagination to relate the argument in this particular case, not only to Bear Island but also, of course, to the whole question of the validity and nature of the aboriginal rights of the native peoples in the whole of the vast hinterland of northern Ontario.

In this particular case -- and I refer to it mainly as the Baker Lake case -- the plaintiffs asserted an existing aboriginal title over an undefined portion of the Northwest Territories of Canada, including approximately 78,000 square kilometres around the community of Baker Lake. The plaintiffs were -- amongst others -- individual Inuit who live, hunt and fish in the Baker Lake area. The defendants in the case were certain mining companies and the Attorney General of Canada.

When the matter came before the courts, the government admitted that the individual plaintiffs and their predecessors have occupied and used the Baker Lake area since time immemorial. The defendant mining companies disputed the existence even of an original aboriginal title in the individual plaintiffs or their ancestors. All the defendants said that if an aboriginal title ever existed it was entirely extinguished.

Amongst the various reliefs sought by the particular communities that brought the lawsuit was a declaration that “until such aboriginal rights are expressly abrogated by Parliament, no one is entitled to deal with the Baker Lake area in a manner inconsistent with the Inuit aboriginal rights notwithstanding other statutory authority.”

The case itself is a fascinating exercise in history. With great temerity, the judge, after many pages of evidence and assessment of the evidence, stated: “In the result, I find, on a balance of probabilities on the evidence before me, that at the time England asserted sovereignty over the barren lands west of Hudson Bay, the Inuit were the exclusive occupants of the portion of barren lands” -- and then he goes on to describe the particular areas. “An aboriginal title to that territory, carrying with it the right freely to move about, and hunt and fish over it, vested at common law in the Inuit.”

I suppose those are pretty magic words for members of the legal profession. That shows that title was a recognized title in the common law of England, and it is that title which comes into question when it is interfered with by a treaty, such as Treaty No. 9.

There are, of course, then, lengthy dissertations in the remainder of the judgement about whether that aboriginal right had been extinguished. The conclusion of the case was, in fact, that it was not extinguished; it may have been curtailed.

I want to point out what injustice the courts are doing in making their assessments with respect to that title. Again, that is a title vested by the common law in the native peoples, that aboriginal title.

Mr. Justice Hall -- and we all know and respect him -- in one of the cases tried to make the distinction by analogy to what had happened in the United States by stating, “It being a legal right, it could not thereafter be extinguished except by surrender to the crown or by competent legislation or legislative authority and then only by specific legislation.” He went on to say -- and this is another case; not the particular case I’m using for the purpose of my illustration this evening -- “It would accordingly appear to be beyond question that the onus of proving that the sovereign intended to extinguish the Indian title lies on the respondent and that the intention must be clear and plain.”

That would be a principle that would appeal to all of us -- that title to a piece of property, a title at common law to property in Ontario can only be extinguished by legislation where the intention is clear and plain. That appears to be the decision of the courts in the United States to the extent that they have been involved in it, but this particular Canadian court said, “No, that is not necessary.

“I do not agree,” the judge in this case said, “that Mr. Justice Hall went that far. Once a statute has been validly enacted, it must be given effect. If its necessary effect is to abridge or entirely abrogate a common-law right, then that is the effect that the courts must give to it. That is as true of an aboriginal title as of any other common-law right.”

I challenge the proposition that our courts, by construing statutes which have no clear and expressed intention to extinguish the aboriginal right, by some process of sophisticated legal philosophy or legal argument or legal legerdemain, can in some way end up with the proposition that, “Yes, that right has been extinguished,” or, “Yes, that right has been curtailed.”

I think that’s all I need to say at the present time for those who are interested in this particular matter. It is fascinating to know that matters of aboriginal title, which I think is fair to say were, except for one or two persons, totally unknown as a concept in common law, certainly in so far as being taught in the law schools or being a matter of any concern to us, are now at this time only of relatively recent elucidation and not so much of origin, because the common law has always been there; the problem has been on many occasions to find it.

I do want to refer to one reference which is in this matter, just to show how recent the concern is. I hope at some time I can ask the legislative library to consider getting it. This was obviously one of the background papers that was of concern to the court in this particular case. A very useful analysis of available historical material relevant to the conclusions reached in this and the next paragraph is to be found in chapter six of The Land Rights of Indigenous Canadian People, a thesis submitted for the degree of doctor of philosophy in the University of Oxford, Trinity term, 1979, by Brian Slattery, currently of the faculty of law, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon. That’s how recent the learning of this whole question is.

For those members who would like to know something more about the habitat and habits of the caribou in the Baker Lake area, I would recommend that as a starting point for their reading on the topic.

8:50 p.m.

What was of concern to the Inuit people in that area was that by their operations, mining companies were so disrupting the ecology of the land that caribou herds of immense size -- and some of the remaining caribou herds in the country -- were being affected and might very well in time be eliminated, thus depriving the native peoples of their right from time immemorial to the means of livelihood these herds provide.

Let me make one further point -- it is made in the case -- that an aboriginal right is inconsistent with the individual private ownership of land. There is no lawyer that can encompass in the most imaginative content the kind of ownership of land that we talk about in relation to individual ownership, which also has a right in somebody else to roam over it and to fish and hunt in it if he wishes to do so. They are quite inconsistent. But that is a different kind of problem where it is the crown that is involved in the ownership of land. The nature of that ownership is somewhat different when there are aboriginal rights which were in existence at the time of the assertion of the original title of the crown.

I have gone on at some length about that particular legal matter. I know that some of the members of the assembly find these legal matters so fascinating that I think this may be an appropriate time to deal with another one that has been of concern to me. I placed on the Order Paper on the second sitting day of this session a bill dealing with temporary relief for mortgagors in the province. It appears as Bill 10, and it is a short bill. I want to spend a moment or two speaking about that bill and its purpose.

I want to make the point right at the beginning that it is not a solution to the problem of high interest rates. All it is is an endeavour within the legislative jurisdiction of this assembly to buy the time to deal with the kinds of problems that have been aired every day in this House by questions addressed to the Premier (Mr. Davis) by both the Leader of the Opposition (Mr. S. Smith) and the leader of this party (Mr. Cassidy), about who is going to do what to assist home owners in Ontario who are faced with the renewal of their mortgages at interest rates significantly higher than the interest borne by the mortgage instruments at present.

My colleague the member for Lakeshore (Mr. Lawlor) is knowledgeable about land matters and mortgages and so on. I am not. I can speak with an open mind about them because I missed that particular series of lectures at law school and know little, if anything, about real property or mortgage law.

All I said in the bill was, “Where a mortgage is due to expire between the day on which this act comes into force and March 31, 1981, the mortgage shall be deemed to continue in effect upon the same terms and conditions until March 31, 1981.” All it does is extend the term of existing mortgages that were going to fall due this year until March 31, 1981. It doesn’t say anything else and it doesn’t alter anything else. It extends the term of the mortgage contract until March 31, 1981.

I want to say there is no particular magic in the form in which it was drawn. I could have asked that the bill be prepared so that each mortgage as it fell due was extended for a full year. Some people may criticize this bill because it bunches up a number of mortgages to fall due for renewal on March 31, 1981. I am not worried whether somebody can devise a better system than this. All I wanted to do was to light one small lamp amidst the encircling gloom of the problem of the residential home owner in Ontario, and say, let’s call a halt until the levels of government concerned will sort out what, if anything, can be done to assist residential home owners in Ontario.

We’ve listened day in and day out to this question. “It’s a national matter and it’s a federal matter; we’re waiting about the federal matter and we’re waiting upon the ministers. It’s unfortunate that the Conservative government was thrown out, because they were going to have a mortgage interest credit. Now it’s up to the Liberal Party, which caused all this terrible havoc, to come into our country. And so on. We listen to it day in and day out. We’re not doing anything to protect the individual home owner, the residential home owner in Ontario.

Whatever else we may differ on about our ideologies of government, surely we can agree that we have a profound obligation to protect people. I have a sense that we could all come to agreement that we want to protect the people we purport to represent when we sit here, representing, as each of us does, a particular riding, making up the whole of the province of Ontario.

Will members please give consideration to Bill 10? It buys a little bit of time. That’s all it does. I think it merits the attention of this assembly.

I know. I can play a spoiler’s game on occasion, when it’s warranted, as well as anybody else, by raising nitpicking questions of constitutional law. I just want you to know that, on the basis of men whose judgement I’m not prepared to gainsay, that bill is totally within the legislative competence of this government. I know the parliamentary assistant (Mr. Sterling) will convey this to the Attorney General (Mr. McMurtry) and to the other members of the priesthood in that ministry at some point in time.

I do want to lay to rest the question that it’s not within our authority to deal with interest rates here. Let me make it very clear: A contract between a person carrying on business in Ontario and a resident of Ontario with respect to land in Ontario and the borrowing of money in Ontario is a matter within the province of Ontario. It is a matter that in normal terms would be called a matter of property and civil rights.

I don’t want to duck the question with respect to the place it impinges upon the question of interest and whether the jurisdiction of it is within this assembly. I think perhaps the easiest way for me to say it is to refer to someone of whom I thought very highly and was prepared to quote when he was alive; I’m even more prepared to quote in best legal tradition now that he’s dead. That is, the late dean of the law school, Dean Falconbridge, in a book which all of us loved and revered, The Law of Mortgages on Land, third edition.

He has a heading directed to this specific question. I want to refer to it because I don’t want to hear that my bill is unconstitutional and I don’t want to think that in some way or another I’m encroaching upon what the federal government could do in order that the Conservative government of Ontario can get off the hook with respect to the merit of my proposal.

The heading is at page 646 of The Law of Mortgages on Land, third edition, and it’s headed “Legislative Power as to Interest and Mortgages.” “By section 92 of the British North America Act, 1867, it is provided that in each province the Legislature may exclusively make laws in relation to matters coming within certain enumerated classes of subjects, including inter alia property and civil rights in the province.

9 p.m.

“In relation to all matters not coming within the classes of subjects enumerated in section 92, it is provided by section 91 that the Parliament of Canada may make laws to the peace, order and good government of Canada and for greater certainty but not so as to restrict the generality of the foregoing terms of section 91. It is declared that notwithstanding anything in this act, the exclusive legislative authority of the Parliament of Canada extends to all matters coming within certain enumerated classes of subjects including ‘interest.’

“Mortgages, generally speaking, come within property and civil rights in the province and for the present purpose difficulty arises only where interest and mortgages impinge on each other.

“The natural division between the legislative authority of the Dominion and that of the provinces would appear to be:

“1. to assign to the Dominion the power to legislate in relation to usury and the rate of interest generally, including the right to require that the rate of interest shall be stated clearly in a mortgage securing the repayment of a loan with interest and the power to prescribe the rate of interest payable in cases where the rate is not specified in the mortgage; and

“2. to assign to the provinces the power to legislate in relation to the time and terms of redemption of a mortgage, including the power to provide upon what terms the mortgage shall be redeemable after a given period or after maturity, even though the terms prescribed involve the payment of interest in lieu of notice.

“Interest in its ordinary connotation covers contractual interest and it has been held by the Privy Council that it is ultra vires of a province to pass a statute the object of which is to reduce the rate of interest on debentures or other securities issued or guaranteed by the province.”

It goes on to deal with the matter, but sufficient to say that this simple bill extending the term of each mortgage which falls due from the time of this act, the proposed bill, if it were passed by this assembly, until March 31, 1981, or some other period of time, is a matter totally within the jurisdiction of this province.

In case my friends on the other side would be saying, “Oh, those are such sacred rights; we must not in any way touch the sacred rights of borrowers and lenders,” I may say that under a preceding Conservative government in 1932, they passed in this province the Mortgagors and Purchasers Relief Act and then in 1933 they redid it under the same title, the Mortgagors and Purchasers Relief Act, 1933. That set out a fairly elaborate provision but in fact it was to provide relief against default in payment in Ontario of principal. In British Columbia they had a similar act and that was with respect to default in payment of principal and interest.

In The Constitutional Law, in the present edition of the book originally prepared by the Chief Justice of Canada, he deals at some length with that particular legislation. He said, for example, referring to the Ontario act to which I’ve just referred, in 1932 and 1933, and the British Columbia act, “These statutes were envisaged as temporary and were re-enacted over successive periods until becoming spent in 1946 and 1949.”

I particularly chose not to go that route because that was what is called moratorium legislation, and there were some other problems in connection with it, but I did want to point out that there is, in this province, an occasion when a Conservative government -- before the dread years of the Hepburn government in this province, which was the next year -- under that great statesman, George S. Henry and the Honourable Leopold Macaulay, they saw fit to protect mortgagors in this province. I say to this House that we have that obligation now to buy that kind of time.

I want to emphasize again, I don’t know whether there are any equitable solutions. I don’t know whether there are any selected people who, by way of subsidy or other protection or by some form of credit, taxwise or any other way, can or should be benefited. But I am saying we cannot let this kind of creeping catastrophe, affecting individual citizens, proceed. We have to call a halt and buy the kind of time that my bill proposes. I would recommend it, I hope, for the consideration of the assembly.

There is one other thing that I think, and my colleagues from Lakeshore (Mr. Lawlor), Ottawa East (Mr. Roy), and Carleton-Grenville (Mr. Sterling), and any other lawyers and so on, can correct me. There are some people who think the five-year mortgage was for the benefit of the lender in this province. Our Mortgages Act is designed, if I understand it correctly, to protect the borrower. It is the borrower who has the privilege and the right, if anybody tries to have his mortgage run longer than five years, to tender the three months’ interest and to pay off his mortgage and start over again.

In a funny way, in the financial world, it sort of got straightened around that somehow or other it is the lending companies that have, in some way or other, imposed this five-year term on mortgages. It is a very important right of the people in this province -- as distinguished from the United States where they don’t have the concept of this rollover mortgage every five years to have an opportunity to adjust the rate to the current rate that is in effect at that time. You takes your chances, of course, if it is up or if it is down, but it is a right.

I wanted to assert, and I see my colleague, the member for Lakeshore, nod, it is to the benefit of the borrower, or at least it was at its inception. That was the intention at that time, so I don’t think we should be tampering in any serious way with that substantive part. That is why I emphasize the very temporary, short nature of the time limit proposed in Bill 10, which I have had before the House. My bill is, I believe, totally within the jurisdiction of this assembly. I would hope that the assembly or the government would see fit some day to adopt some version of it as an urgent matter.

I guess I am the same as everybody else; I have been reading the press. If one looks over the last two to three months in the press, one can see the extent and degree of the problem we face in Ontario with the mortgages that are coming due. One can blame it all on the deficit and the balance of payments and international trade, but I would find it very difficult in Riverdale, if the sheriff appears to evict somebody as a result of foreclosure proceedings in a mortgage, to be able to say to the fellow, “Well, go along peaceably, because when we get the deficit on the current account and international trade straightened out, you will be all right and everything will be just fine.” It won’t go down very well in my riding.

We have an urgent need to protect people and I think we have to get about that business and get about it very promptly. I certainly don’t want to have a 42- or 60-day interregnum while we all go out around the area, while mortgage after mortgage is falling due. I would rather prop up the government in the hope that an idea may come to somebody over there as to how we are going to assist them in this next period of time.

I will say this: if they will pass the bill, I will, in return for their passing my bill, withdraw my support from them and we can go to the country with the time extension in place. I think that would mean the residential mortgagors in Ontario would be well protected.

Mr. Van Horne: You are pulling the House’s collective leg.

Mr. Sterling: What’s Trudeau going to do about it?

9:10 p.m.

Mr. Renwick: Perhaps we should speak for a moment or two about the Liberal Party. I remember a few months ago I was walking outside the corridor here, strolling along with the leader of the Liberal Party, and we were chatting about the world of politics here. He said, “I have my agenda.” I want the members of the Liberal Party to know that we here have our agenda as well.

I want the leader of the Liberal Party and those who fully support that party’s agenda, if there are any, to know that we don’t march to their drum; we never have. Every time we have talked about lost opportunities of the government, we have always had in place policies of this party to take the place of the policies of the government. That distinguishes us from the Liberal Party. They don’t have any policies. I have sat here for many years and I have never ever had a coherent statement of the Liberal Party policy either at the federal level or at the provincial level.

The way in which the world will unfold for us is that we in the New Democratic Party have been engaged in a complete review and restatement of the policies of the New Democratic Party --


Mr. Acting Speaker: May I remind the House the member for Riverdale has the floor.


Mr. Acting Speaker: Has the member for Riverdale surrendered the floor to the member for Sudbury East (Mr. Martel)?


Mr. Renwick: In any event, some time in June this party will meet in its biannual convention, it will complete the review of all policies of the party, it will be prepared, and in the course of our agenda we will go to the country --


Mr. Renwick: Let me make one other point, if I may. The chap over there is absent tonight but he sits in the second seat -- seat number seven from one end, number two from the other end. He is flanked on the one side by his Deputy Premier and on the other side by the House Leader. He is the fellow who walks down the hall and asks for it. Let’s have no illusions about when the election will be held in Ontario. The election will be held on that particular occasion. I suggest members stick around -- maybe about the middle of August. But I want the House to know that come the end of June, whenever the election is called, the New Democratic Party will be ready to take its place on the government benches -- later on this year or early next year.

I may also say I was going to go to Greece and I can’t go this summer. I am going the summer after the next election and I have ruled out this summer, so it will be next summer.

Mr. Van Horne: You are not ready now but you will be in October, is that what you are telling us?

Mr. Renwick: I am ready now, yes; I’m not worried about an election. Neither is any of us ready or --


Mr. Renwick: There is nothing to indicate that you people are ready for an election.


Mr. Acting Speaker: Order. Does the member for Riverdale have any further remarks?

Mr. Renwick: Mr. Speaker, I am glad my friend, the parliamentary assistant to the Attorney General, is in the assembly this evening because I want to turn to another topic.

Mr. Martel: The Leader of the Opposition is withdrawing his motion next week. He flip-flopped again. We will be left to vote alone.

Ms. Acting Speaker: Order from the member for Sudbury East.

Mr. Martel: Sorry, I just wanted to give the member for Riverdale a respite.

Mr. Renwick: Thank you.

Mr. Martel: Go ahead, I will be quiet.

Mr. Renwick: Mr. Speaker, I am about halfway through.

An hon. member: And the member for Sudbury East is about a quarter of the way through.

Mr. Acting Speaker: Order. The member for Riverdale has the floor.

Mr. Renwick: The next item I want to speak to is a matter that is very close to my particular heart, as I know it is to a number of other members in the assembly. It is the question of community legal clinics. I sit on the board of one of them, the Riverdale Social Legal Services. It is because of my interest in that clinic and some concerns which have appeared on the horizon, expressed by my friend the member for Carleton-Grenville (Mr. Sterling), that I want to spend a few minutes talking about it to keep the record straight about the role of the community legal clinics.

The occasions are twofold. One is, there was considerable criticism during the course of the hearings on Bill 163, the Residential Tenancies Act, and subsequent to that, that the representations made to that committee by the community legal clinics which appeared and made presentations to protect the tenants were somehow or other improper, that public funds should not have been used to support clinics which took on that kind of a role. That was a very real criticism. I think my colleague the member for Carleton-Grenville will agree that that was a concern that got through to the ministry.

A second matter of concern was an address the member for Carleton-Grenville made last year to a community clinic that was opening its doors in the Rexdale area. I don’t think I am quoting him out of context. He went on to talk in glowing terms. He was standing in the place of the Attorney General (Mr. McMurtry) at the opening of that clinic.

He said in a portion of his remarks: “I caution you to exercise great care to ensure that your staff, your clients and the targets of your activities are fully aware that your object is the delivery of legal services, not the attainment of political goals.”

9:20 p.m.

I want to spend a few minutes, because I think it’s a matter which has to be clarified, so that again we don’t stumble into some area that the legal aid clinics in the province are under some wraps with respect to the activities that they can engage in.

I particularly want to deal a little bit with the historic terms of that particular matter. I think it is supported by the Conservative Party, at least in good part, because certainly their campaign headquarters, in response to a questionnaire in 1977, seemed to support the public role of community legal clinics in areas of law reform and creating, by legal education and otherwise, public awareness of the need for law reform and changes in the law.

In December 1973 the task force on legal aid was appointed, with Mr. Justice Osler as its chairman. It was “to review in depth the operation of the legal aid plan in Ontario and determine the parameters of its future direction and development in order to ensure that it has the capacity to meet its objectives in the years ahead.”

The task force reported in 1974. In its report it dealt with the concept of neighbourhood legal aid clinics and the provision of legal services to the poor. Even at this fairly early stage in the study and development of legal services delivery models, the task force recognized the importance of activities other than traditional litigation.

On page 21 of the Osler report it was stated: “They,” the lawyers, “are no longer seen merely as professionals who handle documents. This traditional concept represents only a modest portion of the lawyer’s professional responsibility. The wide range of professional services that lawyers have traditionally provided to their clients is expected to be provided to the poor as well as the rich. The concept of legal aid as litigation is now clearly seen as inadequate.”

Following this report, regulation 160 of 1976 was passed which gave authority for the funding of clinics. That was a red-letter day in the province.

The debate about community clinics and their activities did not end with the report and the regulation. Briefs continued to be submitted to various authorities, including the clinical funding committee which had been established pursuant to regulation 160/76 to administer and grant funds to community clinics.

In 1976, a group called Action on Legal Aid, a coalition of most community clinics, presented a brief, entitled The Meaning of Legal Services in a Community Legal Clinic Context, to the clinical funding committee. The brief dealt with the necessity of clinics engaging in law reform activities. The brief is excellent and puts the arguments ably. I want to quote from that brief:

“The proposition that people not normally reached by the private bar are entitled to the same quality and variety of legal services as are presently being delivered by lawyers to their paying clients is the basic principle which must govern the delivery of legal services in a community legal services setting.

“The reason citizens of low-income communities are entitled to the same legal services as paying clients is that these are services which must be available to any individual, rich or poor, if he or she is to have an equal opportunity to partake of a citizen’s benefits, rights, protections and privileges.

“Given a social system that makes that opportunity conditional upon ready access to the legal system and its processes, and then contrives a legal system where such access is wholly dependent upon the availability of a range of costly legal services, there can be no doubting society’s obligation to make such services available to all citizens regardless of their private ability to pay.

“The legal services traditionally supplied to persons with means and which are necessary for full participation in the benefits, rights, protections and privileges of our system are listed in the Action on Legal Aid brief to the government of Ontario in response to the Osler task force report on legal aid as follows:

“(a) case by case advocacy; (b) legal advice prior to taking steps having legal consequences; (c) client education about law and its process; (d) law reform based on test cases, research, lobbying and organizing; (e) summary advice and assistance; (f) training of legal workers; (g) timeliness of response; (h) psychological and geographical accessibility.

“If clinics are to meet the legitimate demands of their clientele for legal services, then all of these services must be readily available, either directly or through the clinic itself or, in appropriate cases, through the private bar. This most particularly includes law reform, the one category of these services the legitimacy of which may not yet be generally acknowledged.

“The necessity for law reform initiatives by lawyers and, in a clinical setting, by paraprofessionals as well, arises for a number of reasons.

“First, if the law is to be an effective and constructive influence in society, it must be a dynamic influence, sensitive and responsive to needs for change. The inability of legislative draftsmen to draft laws free of errors, omission or ambiguities, and which correctly anticipate the implications and consequences that will arise or become evident when the law is actually applied to real-life situations, and the phenomenal rate of change in the socio-political and economic circumstances and conditions on which any law is premised or with which it is designed to deal, means that law that is not subject to a continuous law reform process quickly becomes a problem for society, rather than a benefit, at best irrelevant and at worst destructive and alienating.

“Second, the design of our legal system and the nature of our law is such that the multifaceted process of law reform is in almost all of its facets dependent on the active involvement of lawyers with direct experience in the application of the law to the business or interests of their clients.

“Third, law reform activity in the areas of law in which they work must be regarded as an obligation of lawyers. They have the direct experience of the need for change, coupled with the training and experience to recognize opportunities for reform and to identify likely avenues of reform, the skills to pursue those avenues, and the incentive to act. They are parties to a system of law that requires a constant reform input which, in large measure, only they can supply.

“The law reform activity of the private bar in respect of the commercial business and property law with which its practice is largely concerned is extensive. Adventuresome litigation designed to expand legislative concepts or to clarify ambiguities is commonplace, extensive legal research of litigation possibilities with the same object in mind even more so.

“Fully researched and persuasively argued briefs in respect of proposals for change or advocating a particular interpretation of existing law go out from the private bar to government officials and responsible ministers in a constant stream. Meetings for the same purpose at all levels of government are a regular feature of a successful practice. Legal writing in learned publications on law reform issues is an acknowledged mark of distinction, lobbying of colleagues and associates and of government officials and politicians on law reform issues an honourable tradition, and the organizing of professional groups and of client groups to work together on law reform issues a common experience.

“All of this is an integral aspect of a successful private practitioner’s practice. Part of it, of course, will be done as another piece of professional business directly for a particular client at his expense. Much of it is motivated, in part at least, by considerations of personal professional reputation and standing and a significant proportion arises because of the sense of professional obligation felt by lawyers when they encounter a serious error or injustice in the law with which they are concerned.

“But regardless of the motivation, the result is that law that is of primary interest to paying clients is subjected to a constant barrage of law reform initiatives of one sort or another by lawyers. It is that barrage that ensures its essential vitality.

9:30 p.m.

“The silence on the other side of the tracks, on the other hand, is complete. One could safely hazard a guess that in Toronto in the decade prior to 1971 there was not a single practising lawyer’s law reform initiative in the interests of low-income citizens in respect of any of unemployment insurance law, workmen’s compensation law, welfare law, consumer law, landlord and tenant law or family law. Any exception that could be turned up would serve only to prove the essential truth of the proposition. The law, as it relates to the particular interests of low-income communities, has no dynamic aspect; it is dead law.

“Changes and innovations occur only after it has become so archaic and inappropriate, and has inflicted its errors and omissions, irrelevancies and incongruities on so many victims that it becomes a political issue which ultimately compels legislative initiative. The absence of any continuous dynamic process of change and adaptation in respect of the law as it applies to low-income communities has not received much attention in the legal aid debate to date, but it is arguably the single most significant consequence of the failure to provide low-income communities with access to legal services.

“To suggest that law reform activity by publicly funded legal clinics is somehow unjustified or inappropriate, and to deny clinics’ resources for that activity, would be to arbitrarily continue to deprive the communities they serve of the benefits of law that is vital and responsive, which other segments of our society enjoy as a matter of course. It would also preclude attempts to find general solutions to problems which may be generating unnecessary demands for legal services.

“The advent of clinics means that for the first time ever there will be professional people, lawyers and paraprofessionals with the experience and ability to recognize law reform needs and possibilities and the skills to pursue them, who will have direct experience of the application of the law as it affects low-income citizens. The responsible application of that experience of the law reform initiatives must be recognized as a professional obligation and accepted as an integral part of any clinic’s functions.”

If I may return to the chronology of what took place: In June 1978 Mr. Justice Grange was appointed by the Attorney General to review the operation and administration of the clinical funding regulation and to make recommendations with respect thereto. He reported in October 1978, and on page 16 of his report entitled Report of the Commission on Clinical Funding, which is this document I have here, he stated. “The definition of legal and paralegal services I have set out above is intended to encompass law reform.”

Following the report of Mr. Justice Grange, new regulation on clinic funding 226/79 was passed. The Grange report’s recommendation formed the basis for the new regulation. Section 146(2) of regulation 226/79 states the following: “In this part funding refers to the payment of funds to a clinic to enable the clinic to provide legal services or paralegal services or both, including activities reasonably designed to encourage access to such services or to further such services, and services designed solely to promote the legal welfare of a community on a basis other than fee for service.”

Nowhere in the regulation is the term “legal or paralegal services” explained any more clearly. However, since the regulation was based on the Grange report’s recommendations it would seem appropriate to look to Grange’s definition, which included law reform. The law society seems to have accepted this as well, not that the law society’s acceptance is the be-all and end-all, but it does help, for in their response to the report of the provincial auditor they stated the following:

“Within the definition of these services” -- that is, legal and paralegal services -- “clinics provide legal advice and information to low-income clients, representation in appropriate cases in courts and administrative tribunals, community education by way of written materials and public meetings and seminars, and major community outreach and law reform activities on matters affecting low-income residents of the province.”

It would appear, then, that any debate there may have been about law reform activity being a legitimate part of legal services would seem to be resolved. Clearly, the tenant community is a very large part of the client community served by clinics. For some legal services hotlines in Metro, tenants are their whole client community. Thus, lobbying in tenants’ interests before the various bodies that dealt with the various versions of Bill 163, and arguing on behalf of tenants before the Court of Appeal with regard to the bill’s constitutionality, would seem to fit squarely into appropriate law reform activity which ought to be undertaken on behalf of the clinic’s funds.

I think it’s fair to say that the Conservative Party believes that to be so. The member for Carleton-Grenville responded thus to a question raised in 1977: “Community legal clinics should be confined to provisions of legal services to individual clients on a case-by-case basis.” That was in reply to one part of the question.

“The funding for community legal clinics should be expanded to adequately cover community legal education to inform people of their legal rights, lobbying for changes in the law which their expertise shows are needed, organization of their clients to enable them to more effectively enforce their legal rights through group action.”

That was the answer to one of the multiple-part questions that was asked. The response of the campaign headquarters of the Progressive Conservative Party was: “Community clinics are expected to provide as a first priority a basic legal service to the community they serve. They must therefore ensure personal service to each individual client. Community legal education and preventive law form a basic and necessary part of any community clinic and it is appropriate that community clinics have the scope to challenge legal anomalies and advise on the reform of those aspects of the law which place an unfair burden on the community which seeks their aid.”

I wanted to make certain the record was clear as to the historical sequence in the establishment of legal aid clinics which would indicate what was said in the original Osler report and is reflected in the work that is at present being carried on, that the whole range of services available by the private bar to its paying clients -- including lobbying, educational work, law reform work, all that work -- is designed to be available to members of low-income communities that are served on an other-than-fee basis by the community clinics.

I do hope that at some point the member for Carleton-Grenville will take it upon himself to correct any misunderstanding that may have arisen because of the nature of the statement that was made. I hope he and the Attorney General will clarify that the law reform activities, as participated in by these various clinics, not only in the law of landlord and tenant but in many other areas, are important, legitimate and proper areas of concern for those clinics to serve their clients, although funded through the Law Society of Upper Canada, under the aegis of the Ontario Legal Aid Plan.

I certainly don’t want any indication at this time that regardless of how much there may be a stiffening in society’s attitudes, any of that broad range of legal and paralegal services being rendered day in and day out by the community clinics -- certainly in Metropolitan Toronto and indeed, I’m sure, elsewhere -- is in some way not quite proper. It is the most important element, next to the actual case-by-case situation of their individual clientele, which led to the establishment of the whole of the system of legal aid clinics.

There is no question that the absence of those clinics was a serious gap. I want to make certain, to the extent that I can, that there is no subtle limitation placed upon the role that can be played by the legal aid clinics.

9:40 p.m.

Let me give one last example. There was a staff report to the Metropolitan Toronto social services committee with respect to the discussions with the province as to the future of Ontario public housing in Metropolitan Toronto.

As a member of the Riverdale Social Legal Services, I felt it was an obligation of the clinic on which I serve that the clinic should make certain that the Ontario Housing Corporation tenants in the area served by that clinic, which is the whole of the Riverdale riding, were well aware of the kinds of proposals being made which were going to affect the very substance of their security and tenure in public housing and the availability of affordable housing to those people.

I participated myself, along with members of the staff of the Riverdale Socio-Legal Services, in making certain that the people in the Riverdale area were well aware of the threat which was involved in those circumstances.

I want now to turn to a more difficult topic. Again, I don’t pretend to know what it’s about, but I want to raise it in the assembly because I endeavoured to raise it at the --

Mr. Nixon: We’re now on three out of seven. Is this the third one?

Mr. Conway: I think this is a filibuster.

Mr. Renwick: I’m glad my friend stayed to enjoy it.

In the debate on the interim supply motion last fall -- I think it was around the early part of December -- I tried to raise my concern about the inability of this government to come to grips with its capacities in some way to participate in the revenues generated in Ontario by the sale of petroleum products. My concern related to the immense discussion that was taking place between the Premier of Ontario (Mr. Davis) and the Premier of Alberta, as well as with the then Prime Minister of Canada, about what should be done with respect to the revenues flowing from the production and sale of petroleum in Saskatchewan.

What I was concerned about was that this province wasn’t trying to do anything to help itself. It seemed to me it was blaming Alberta and laying the burden on the then Prime Minister of Canada, that somehow or other he should make certain that some of the proceeds of the government revenues from the production and sale of petroleum came to this province. He was, in a funny way, asserting a very powerful position but, at the same time, doing it as if he could not influence the events in any way.

I tried, in a very elementary way, to indicate that, yes, there must be some way in which the revenues generated in Ontario by the sale of petroleum products could, in some fair and equitable way, come to the coffers of the province; that perhaps it could come by direct action of this government with imagination and ingenuity with respect to the way in which the taxing net was cast by this province.

I still have a sense that this can be done, and I do not think we have to rely necessarily on some distribution agreement, but I may be wrong. I may be wrong because of my lack of understanding about the way in which the pricing mechanism works in the petroleum area from the time it is produced in the wells in Alberta until it is sold at the pumps in Ontario.

I am indebted to one of the members of the Treasurer’s staff for sending me this intricate document called Fiscal Transfer Pricing in Multinational Corporations, and one of the cases dealing with the mining royalties in Manitoba, a case of the International Nickel Company and the Minister of Finance for the province of Manitoba. What I understand is now taking place is that the prices charged by the sales of outlets of the major petroleum companies in Ontario is at a level that produces very small margins of profit of any significance in Ontario, and therefore Ontario’s capacity to tax is severely limited.

I don’t know whether that is so. I don’t understand it, but we do all know that some of the major oil companies have moved their principal operations to Alberta. I don’t understand the corporate network of companies established by them, through which their sales ultimately take place in the province, but I do believe I understand, because I have some experience with it, the way in which on a non-arm’s-length basis prices are established between various components of the same corporate structure, such as a company like Imperial Oil.

If my understanding is correct, the shift of the economic centre, if it has shifted, to Alberta, in the sense of the wealth which has attracted so much attention, may, through the corporate organizations of the oil companies, have imposed a great threat upon the taxing capacity of this government to raise funds. I am hoping to pursue that matter. I hope and anticipate that when the Treasurer of Ontario (Mr. F. S. Miller) presents his budget he will direct his attention to whether or not it is possible for the taxing structure of this province to interject itself upon the revenue stream generated in this province by the sale of petroleum products in a way which will be beneficial, in a fair and proper way, to this particular jurisdiction.

I think I will end on that note, Mr. Speaker. I haven’t completed the six or seven matters I wanted to deal with, but I have had my instructions from the House leader of the New Democratic Party which, for the first time in my knowledge, are at variance with the instructions I had from the whip of the party, but that happens in the best regulated of families.

I am not going to pursue these matters further. I imagine I may have an opportunity to deal with some of the other matters at a later date. Perhaps in the budget debate, maybe next December, I will have an opportunity to say something further about matters on which I feel strongly.

If my House leader will bear with me, I thought I would just quote, if I may and if I can find it, what I thought was a rather interesting statement. While I am reading it I will leave it up to the members of the assembly to guess who made it and when.

9:50 p.m.

“The view that Canada could not have enjoyed sufficient economic growth without this vast foreign investment in Canada and that the Canadian standard of living would have been much lower if we had not had this vast foreign investment in Canada appears to me very questionable. The nature of our development might have been somewhat different, but I believe a higher average rate of employment could have been maintained and more growth of total employment and of production of goods and services in Canada could have been achieved with much less reliance on a net increase of foreign investment in Canada if Canadian policies had aimed at such a target in the past and could be achieved by Canada in the future if Canadian policies are in future aimed at such targets.

“Canada has, since 1952 on, with minor exceptions, a large net deficit on goods and services, including payments of interest and dividends on foreign investments in Canadian industries, resources and securities, accompanied by large-scale imports of capital. No other country of comparable maturity has ever had anything like so large a deficit sustained over so many years. At a time of relatively high unemployment in Canada it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the continuing very large deficit in the balance of payments is not only disadvantageous in itself, but is indicative of an excessive capital inflow, as well as structural weaknesses in the Canadian economy, which result in excessive aggregate spending on goods and services provided from abroad to the detriment of the production of goods and services of a similar character in Canada.

“It is clear that the recent high levels of unemployment in Canada do not arise from a deficiency of total spending by Canadians or of spending for capital purposes. A relatively very large fraction of our gross national expenditure has, however, been spent directly or indirectly on balance for imported goods and services and has to that extent failed to provide employment in Canada.

“There has been a diversion of purchasing power from domestic production to foreign production. If appreciably more of total spending by Canadians had been on goods and services produced in Canada, the level of unemployment would have been much less than that which has actually been experienced. Analysis of our situation indicates that the approach to higher employment and output should be through measures designed to reduce the large deficit in our current account balance of payments and through increases in spending of a selective character likely to increase production in Canada, rather than through measures designed to raise the level of total spending by Canadians.

“I am sure there are many more possible ways of setting up incentives directed towards these goals than is generally realized. The deficit in the current account of the balance of payments and the net capital inflow, including changes official exchange reserves, are necessarily equal and the one cannot fall without the other declining equally.”


Mr. Renwick: Well, that is just because there is nothing new under the sun. It is as appropriate today as it was in 1960 when the then governor of the Bank of Canada was sacked by the Conservative government from his governorship of the bank when he was reporting 20 years ago on the state of the Canadian economy.

It is utterly amazing that every 10 years since 1960, when it was first realized that direct foreign investment had quadrupled from 1945 to 1960, that there was very serious concern about the state of the economy of Canada at that time, and that ever since that time the position, called perhaps something like economic nationalism, espoused at that time by James Coyne, the then governor of the bank, when he was sacked by the Honourable Donald Fleming, the then Conservative Minister of Finance, and when the Liberal apologists equally refused to take the position espoused by Mr. Coyne, we have suffered for the last 20 years the same problems in our economy.

Let me make another point. That was in 1960 and 1961. From that time until 1970 we heard little. Look what happened then in the Liberal Party. Donald Fleming sacked James Coyne, the governor of the Bank of Canada, for espousing very positive needs of the economy of Canada, indicating quite clearly that economic policies are required, not monetary policies. A monetary policy can only do certain things. The responsibility for growth, the responsibility for employment, the responsibility for stability of prices depend upon the fiscal and debt management policies of the government. That was said in 1961. The Liberal Party comes into power. The man who espouses that view with minor variations, Walter Gordon, lasts just that long in the Liberal world and goes down as well.

That party over there and that party to my right and counterparts of those parties do not understand that whatever we call them -- whether we call them cyclical needs or whether we call them structural needs -- the fundamental problems are still the same. There has to be a restructuring of the economic principles on which this country is going to function.

My colleague and members of this assembly will recall that in 1970-71, 10 years ago, we had another upsurge of feeling that something was wrong with the economy. Even this assembly had a select committee on cultural and economic nationalism. Practically nothing in that report was ever implemented. What do we find 10 years later? We find from the time the New Democratic Party was established until now, it has espoused the very principles that were inherent in the remarks made at that time by James Coyne and the remarks made subsequently in a different context by the world of Walter Gordon.

We have espoused those year in and year out. The leader of this party has gone across the country in two federal elections espousing those same views. In the last week or two of the last election campaign, who do we find talking about them? Why, the Liberal Party, talking again about something called economic nationalism. We must just do a little bit more, they said.

I am not suggesting that many people will be reading my remarks, except all of the people in Riverdale, but let me just make absolutely certain that there’s no misunderstanding about it. With regard to the current deficit on tourist travel -- and the Minister of Industry and Tourism (Mr. Grossman) is here -- there is a raging debate among the academics to decide whether or not it’s cyclical or structural.

On the one hand, it can be seen to be cyclical. Therefore, we don’t need to do anything about it because when the cycle changes, the balance will be restored again and everything will be just fine. There’s the other school which actually says -- and I know my frenetic, peripatetic Minister of Industry and Tourism will agree with this -- that there are structural problems in the tourist industry of Ontario and those are the structural problems that have to be addressed.

Let me take another one. Let me look at the automotive pact. What is it -- a $3.1-billion deficit? I understand the January figures will presage an even greater deficit on the account. One will hear the arguments that all we need to do within the terms of the auto pact is to have some discussions between Ottawa and Washington and we can reverse all of that, that it’s cyclical, that all we have to do is to look back to the days when the auto pact was performing in a way which was not a drain on the current account deficit of Canada and principally of Ontario. We just have to wait now and cyclically it will all change again and everything will be fine.

10 p.m.

I want to say that if the Chrysler problem points up one thing it points up that there is a structural problem in the automotive industry of Canada that has to be addressed; that the automotive pact that worked no longer works. That’s a significant part of our $10 billion deficit on current account.

Every time we look at the question of what we are going to do, we say to everybody: “We must maintain the value of the dollar. It doesn’t matter how much it punishes people inside the country, you have to maintain the value of the dollar.”

Why do you have to maintain the value of the dollar? So that the capital will flow in.

Why does the capital have to flow in? Because we’re importing goods and services and the only way in which that can be met is by capital inflow; the more capital we have flowing into the country the more it means we are importing goods and services. The whole system continues and we never win. We never establish in Canada economic principles that will provide for the kind of balanced, flexible, integrated, intelligent economy which it is within our capacity to fashion if we choose to do so.

I need not say that men like J. M. Keynes said, “Look, if you have to choose between the external value of your currency and the internal value of your currency -- in the best of all possible worlds you don’t have to choose, but if you have to choose -- you choose the one over which you have control -- that is the internal one -- and you let your external one go.” Keynes said it. Everybody says, “Oh, Mr. Keynes, he’s old.” Unless you’re a neo-Keynesian or a post-Keynesian or some other kind of Keynesian it doesn’t mean anything.

It makes very good sense to me that when we have no control over the foreign-exchange value of the dollar outside, which determines the interest rates, when it’s buffeted by whatever accidental events happen to occur, then we’d better start looking to the kind of cost of money that we pay here if we want to stabilize our prices. If we want price stability in Canada, and I mean price stability of money as well as price stability of goods, we’re going to have to establish it here in Canada.

You can listen week after week, Mr. Speaker; you can read the Wall Street Journal; you can watch the Washington Week in Review on public television. The New York Stock Exchange is up and down like this. The American Stock Exchange is away up -- not in the last couple of weeks -- away up. Why is it away up? They’re investing in Canadian resources. They’re buying the shares of the oil companies in Newfoundland.

What has happened now? The bubble’s kind of gone off that a little bit, so the money is flowing out. So what are we worried about? Governor Bouey says, “Oh, we have to maintain the external value of our dollar. If it isn’t maintained, we’ll have to pay more for what we import.” What’s the answer to that? You stop importing.

What are the arguments that are made against Mr. Coyne and Mr. Gordon, against the New Democratic Party and against those of us who have espoused for many years the version that we can have, without being isolationist, an economy in Canada which is our own economy? What are the arguments that are made against it?

First of all, we’re told, “Oh, that’ll mean a series of controls.” I’m saying to you, Mr. Speaker, it doesn’t mean a series of controls. It doesn’t mean exchange control; it doesn’t mean import controls; it doesn’t mean controls on credit; it doesn’t mean controls of any kind. It means the intelligent application of policies.

I don’t want to hear anybody tell us that when we espouse the economic nationalist position -- which is our position, not their position in the Liberal Party -- we do not talk about controls. We can do it without controls. Always remember that it is their version of this economy which produces these erratic controls from time to time, because they don’t understand that we need a new view of our economy and the world in which we live.

What’s the second one that we get? That our standard of living will go down somehow or other if we, Canadians in our own economy, act, not by saying “To hell with the rest of the world” but by establishing our own presence in our own world. They say to me: “You want to have some kind of a low-grade economy.” We don’t want to have some kind of a low-grade economy. If we pursue the policies which have been pursued by Liberal governments in the last 20 years in Canada, and which were no different under the short interregnum period of the Tory government, we will have a standard of living which will go down.

What’s the third argument that’s made? Oh, it will be a mediocre society. It will be kind of a nostalgic society. It will be a small-town society. It will be some kind of a society that won’t be a society of excellence. That argument is wrong. We can have here a society of excellence in economic matters. There’s nothing to indicate that we can’t have that particular kind of society.

There are so many areas, but I don’t want to get hung up and listen to, “Is it cyclical or is it structural?” Those are self-defeating terms. Those are academic terms which are used for the purpose of cancelling each other out so you never have to do anything about the problems. We have a problem in the automotive industry; we have a serious problem, which may or may not be permanent, in the tourist industry; we have a continuing problem with the inflow of capital into this country and it’s very simple. I can never state the equations quite as simply as can some other people. I just want to -- and I know my House leader will be very angry with me -- quote a book by E. P. Neufeld, Money and Banking in Canada, Carleton University Library:

“I should like to emphasize again, as I have in the past, the elementary point that you cannot have a continued net inflow of capital without a continued inflow of goods and services in excess of exports. You likewise cannot have a continued large net inflow of capital without finding that Canadian enterprise is bought out or pushed aside in a wide range of endeavours by foreign enterprise.”

We have to learn that lesson. It is a fundamental lesson. We happen to have, in our party, five principles: high employment, stable prices, sustained economic growth, fair shares and a continuing reduction of the need to have an inflow of capital into the country, which means in the reverse that we produce more and more in Canada and we import less and less.

Some of the members should take a look at the current balance of payments analysis which has been made and they can find it almost anywhere. Look at the elements. Forget for a moment the dividends that have to go abroad, and forget for a moment the interest on debt that has to go abroad. Look at something called “business services.” Sometimes it’s called royalties, and sometimes it’s called know-how, sometimes it’s called business services.

That figure in our current account deficit is what we pay abroad for business services, services which are charged outside the country for corporations doing business in Canada. It has just gone like that. We can’t afford it. Just as the people in Riverdale can’t afford the kind of residential mortgage cost which is being imposed upon them because of the faulty economic policies of this country, so we in the province of Ontario can’t afford it either.

10:10 p.m.

I want to finish with one last word. We have been pretending in Ontario in this time of constitutional turmoil in various other parts of the country that the good old British North America Act is fine for us; that it doesn’t really matter that nobody ever reads it; it doesn’t really matter what it says; that all the fine-tuned distinctions the courts make about all the cases are fine; they have done us well and served us well; we don’t need any changes, but the other people need them and if they really insist long enough, perhaps we will give some consideration to making some changes in the constitution of Canada.

Let me say to this House, this province -- just as much as Quebec, Alberta, British Columbia, Newfoundland or any of the other provinces -- needs a new constitution. It needs a constitution devised, I think, by some form of constituent assembly to be negotiated by the provinces to meet the needs of Canada. It is not some tinkering with some ancient document; it is a brand-new constitution. We need it in Ontario. We can’t get along any longer with a government of Ontario -- this remark is totally nonpartisan -- which constantly says that all economic issues can only be decided in Ottawa.

It can’t live in that world. People in this province expect Ontario and the government of Ontario to take its fair share in the resolution of economic problems. It makes no never-mind for the Minister of Industry and Tourism to go travelling around carrying out a policy which in the throne speech refers to something regarding keeping a balance between what we do here and the money we must have coming in from outside. There is no balance left. Does anybody understand that a country like Canada cannot afford to have a current account deficit of $10 billion and no indication that it is not going higher? We can’t take refuge in the idea it is some cyclical mismanagement of the economy that is taking place and that things will change. They won’t change.

If we go back to the fundamental principles, the only other model ever put forward, even though it was squashed, even though it has not gained very much ground in the espousal of it by the New Democratic Party, is that model put forward in the remarks of James Coyne, Walter Gordon and others and which Ed Broadbent made continuously in the course of the last campaign. They are now being mouthed by each of the parties.

Unless we understand the reality of that concern and are prepared to make those decisions -- not to punish ourselves, heavens no -- but for the purpose of understanding that the present system under which we live, particularly with the results of GATT -- and the Minister of Industry and Tourism knows well the impingement of those on this province -- we have to establish a new set of economic principles for this province and for Canada. The sooner we get on with it, the sooner we will have some chance in the 1980s of rectifying the errors and faults in the economic policies of Canada in the last 20 years at least.

Mr. Sterling: Mr. Speaker, I would like to thank the member for Riverdale for warming up the Legislature this evening for my remarks on the throne speech.

Mr. Wildman: You are really going to cool things off.

Mr. Sterling: Yes, it’s probably true.

The throne speech contained many items of interest to many of us. I think the method by which the government goes through the preparation of the speech and the input it takes from its members, its backbenchers, and from the people in the political party has improved from year to year. Since being elected to this Legislature I think the process has greatly improved from year to year.

Every throne speech that I have read is a general document. You can look at it in terms of what is positive and what is negative. When we look at the items that are mentioned in the throne speech, a lot of them don’t really say that much because they are put in broad terms. What will show whether the throne speech is a success is what actions are taken on it by the government and the Legislature after the session begins and during the next year.

I was pleased in particular with the emphasis in this throne speech on what I consider to be the major issue that we’re going to have to address in the 1980s, that is, the energy problem. I think it’s really broken down into two major problems.

First is the idea that we have to make certain that people understand there is a significant problem. Interestingly enough, when I was coming to Toronto this morning on the plane I sat beside an executive of an oil company.

Mr. Swart: You sat to the right of him, too.

Mr. Sterling: In fact, I did sit to the right of him. That executive indicated to me that in the past year, although there has been a tendency for people to go to smaller cars, the increase in gasoline consumption by the public has risen by five per cent.

Last week I had an opportunity to talk to several Americans and I found they don’t really believe there is a problem in terms of the amount of oil that is available, either to them or to the rest of the world. They believe there is an endless supply of oil.

In terms of the energy problem, we have two things. First of all, as everybody realizes, we have to increase our efforts with regard to conservation. One of the areas that I think must be taken very seriously is that of the building code for the province and for Canada as a whole and to try to impose heavier requirements on the type of materials that must be used, not only for new buildings but in the retrofit of older buildings.

Recently I read an engineering digest, and it indicated in quite a number of buildings the energy consumption could be cut by as much as 50 per cent in some of the buildings we have constructed in Canada. But I think the more immediate energy problem we have relates to the supply of oil.

Mr. Swart: That’s original.

Mr. Sterling: No, it’s not original.

Mr. Peterson: But you’re sincere, and we appreciate it.

Mr. Sterling: I’m attempting to be sincere, and sometimes it’s difficult to be sincere in this forum.

10:20 p.m.

I think the public is unaware that there is an oil supply problem. We didn’t face it this winter because we had a fairly mild winter, but we should realize that each day we are importing more oil and as our consumption rises we’re getting away from being more and more self-sufficient in oil.

As I mentioned before, I think the public is under a tremendous misconception that there is an endless supply of oil. If one can believe them, after one reads a fair bit about this particular issue, the best estimates by the international experts indicate that there is probably somewhere between 25 and 85 years of oil left at our present rate of consumption. In the past 50 years we have used 70 per cent of the world’s known oil reserves.

The other problem is that in order to find new resources for oil it’s costing more and more for each particular well that’s drilled. I understand that in the mid-1960s one could drill a well for somewhere around $100,000. I know now that some of the wells in offshore resource areas cost as much as $100 million to drill at today’s high prices.

We have a finite amount of oil and, whether it lasts for 25 or 85 years, or for 70 years, I think there’s a responsibility on our government, on the government of Canada and on other governments in North America to make a tremendous effort to increase their contribution in terms of conservation and in terms of developing other renewable resources.

Because some of the technology is not there -- we’ve tried for 50 or 60 years to develop a better battery; we haven’t got one -- we really have no other fuel to take the place of oil at this particular time. We’re probably going to make mistakes. We’re going to have to make mistakes in developing these other technologies. But I really feel we should take the steps as indicated in the throne speech and be pioneers as much as we can in this field, always warning the public that no matter how much we’re doing in one particular area, be it the development of methanol or whatever, that isn’t going to be the final and the be-all answer. There are real problems with those particular fuels. They aren’t the be-all and the end-all answer. It takes a lot of trees to produce a gallon of methanol -- if one can do it, and nobody has done it on a commercial basis yet.

It is a very serious problem, and I hope that in my small way I can push my government along the route to doing more in this area. As early as last September, I went to the Premier (Mr. Davis) and asked him and the Minister of Energy (Mr. Welch) to be more involved in this particular area of the production of synthetic liquid fuels. That is going in the face of some reports -- the May 1978 report of the Ministry of Energy said it wasn’t viable economically -- but the world situation has changed so dramatically since that time that I think we must look ahead and anticipate that the situation isn’t going to get much better.

The United States of America now imports 18 million barrels of oil each day. They obtain approximately half of that offshore and produce about half of it at home. Much of that oil is imported from Saudi Arabia. The Soviet Union in the 1980s -- probably it could be happening now -- is going to change from a net exporter of oil to a net importer of oil. This presents a very dangerous problem in terms of the supply of oil, both to us and to the United States. The repercussions could be very great indeed to both Canada and the United States.

Unfortunately, as the previous speaker has indicated to the Legislature, our economy is tied to the United States. They buy a lot of what we produce. The United States is our greatest buyer. If they have a serious economic problem in terms of oil availability and supply, then I think we will have a very serious problem on our hands.

We also have to be prepared for the situation of where the Soviet Union is going to get its oil supply. In the past few months, this has become even more frightening in their moving to Afghanistan. The Soviets have a problem. They have three alternatives in terms of getting their oil supply because their production is falling off. As I mentioned earlier, they are going to turn into a net importer of oil. They can conserve, but they have a more difficult time because they have such a heavy military commitment in terms of the use of the oil. They can buy oil on the open market or they can acquire it without paying for it.

One of the problems they have is that they don’t have a great deal of cash to purchase it. It could present a tremendous pressure on the Middle East countries in terms of what pressures will be placed on them to obtain from them their supplies of oil, including Saudi Arabia. Unfortunately many of the governments of the Middle East countries are very unstable and it could lead to a significant problem in terms of obtaining offshore oil from there.

Mr. Speaker, I see it is almost 10:30. I would like to adjourn the debate at this time and finish my remarks when the debate resumes.

Mr. Sterling moved the adjournment of the debate.

Motion agreed to.

The House adjourned at 10:29 p.m.