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ment and expansion to Australasia, to South Africa, and to Canada, and at the same time give a valuable stimulus to the trade of this country ?-because I need not repeat the truism, which is familiar to every one, that trade follows the flag. It is only necessary to look to the statistics of the colonies, and of foreign countries, to see how very much greater British trade is, in proportion to population, with the former than with the latter. I believe that it is perfectly practicable to devise such a policy as would give that enormous development which would be required in order to enable Canada in twenty years, as Sir Lyon Playfair has said, to take the place of the United States of America in furnishing corn and cattle for the United Kingdom, not only without inflicting any injury upon any portion of the Empire, but on the other hand greatly increasing the trade of this country. If the Mark Lane prices are examined, or the report of the Board of Agriculture, it will be found that in 1890 and 1891 there was a fluctuation in corn of ios. 6d. a quarter, and you will find that it had to reach practically ios. a quarter before it made a halfpenny difference upon the fourpound loaf. I am inclined to think that 55. a quarter imposed upon all foreign corn would be sufficient advantage to the corn of India, Australasia, and Canada; that it would not affect the cost of bread, and that it would yet give an immense impetus and advance to the development of the colonies and of their trade with Great Britain. Let me give you an illustration with reference to meat. Canada, in consequence of the existence of pleuro-pneumonia in the United States of America,
is able to send her cattle into this country without being subjected to slaughter on arrival. Mr. Rusk, the highest authority in the United States of America on that question, has declared that it gives an advantage to Canada of from eight to twelve dollars a head-say ten dollars. The result is, that with that advantage an immense expansion of the trade took place in Canada. Last year we sent 123,000 head of cattle from Canada to England, which resulted in putting over a million dollars more money into the pockets of the people of Canada than the United States received for the same number, and yet no one in this country ever heard an insinuation that the price of meat was affected. This is an illustration, therefore, how England can give an important advantage to her colonies without affecting the cost of the consumer's bread or meat.
In support of these views, I may add that I took the opportunity during the journeys which my late lamented friend Sir John Macdonald and I made in Canada during the recent elections to discuss this subject fully with him, and I am glad to be able to say that that distinguished statesman told me he was prepared to endorse most heartily such a proposition, and that it would receive when propounded the best support that he could give to it. He is, unhappily, no longer with us to give his invaluable aid, but the expression of such an opinion will, I know, have great weight. When the founder of the Imperial Federation League, the late Mr. Forster, came to discuss the question of Imperial Federation with me eight years ago, I told him that the most careful consideration I
had been able to give the subject led me to the conclusion that the means of drawing the colonies and the Mother Country more closely together, and binding them for all time, would have to be found in such fiscal arrangements as I was satisfied could be made, by which the outlying portions of the Empire would be treated by this great country on a different footing from foreign countries. His reply was, “Well, I am a free trader, but I am not so fanatical a free trader that I should not be perfectly willing to adopt such a policy as that for the great and important object of binding this great Empire together."
I believe that by the mode suggested the colonies
obtain such voice and influence in the foreign policy of this country as would amply satisfy them, and that, on the other hand, an increased strength would be given to the Empire by concerting the necessary measures for the purpose of common defence. I have endeavoured to offer my humble solution of the enigma to which the Marquis of Salisbury referred. I may say that I have done so with diffidence. I make these suggestions with an open mind, prepared to abandon my own views if any better means of attaining the same object can be suggested. I shall give my hearty support to any proposal by which the great and important objects of the Imperial Federation League can be realised.
“HOW TO FEDERATE THE EMPIRE : A REPLY TO
IN the October number of this Review I ventured with much hesitation to give my views on the question of Imperial Federation. Mine was not a Colonial plan, nor did I speak for Canada. Imperial Federation, as I then showed, did not emanate from the colonies, but was originated by a number of the leading public men of both the political parties in this country in 1884. Having devoted thirtyseven years of my life to securing to the best of my ability the perpetuation for all time of British institutions in the northern half of North America, and believing as I did that the greatness of the British Empire depended upon the retention of her colonies, I responded to the suggestion of Lord Salisbury that a scheme should be propounded. I may be permitted to say in excuse for my temerity that I had the honour to be one of the authors, a quarter of a century ago, of the Federation of Canada, which has surpassed the most sanguine expectations of its founders.
I offered my suggestions with diffidence, and declared my readiness to abandon them if anything better could be devised. These proposals have been subjected to the most extended criticism here and in Canada and
* The Nineteenth Century, April, 1892.
Australia, but after the most careful examination of all the objections I cannot find that I have been favoured by my critics with any alternative plan.
It is satisfactory to me to know that a large portion of the criticism to which my former article was subjected was founded upon a misapprehension of what I had written. I proposed that when Australasia and South Africa were each united under a central government, as Canada now is, the representatives in London of each of these great outlying portions of the Empire, being members of their respective Governments, should ex officio be sworn of Her Majesty's Privy Council, and thus be placed in a position to be called into consultation with the Cabinet on all questions of foreign policy affecting the countries from which they came. This has been treated as a demand from Canada, and as a great concession for the Imperial Government to make, and Lord Brassey dismisses the proposition curtly in this Review of January last by saying: “It does not seem feasible to give seats in the Cabinet to the Agents-General of the Colonies.” That is not what I proposed; but for the purpose of meeting the suggestion made by the advocates of Imperial Federation that some means of giving the colonies a voice in matters of foreign policy must be found, and of affording Her Majesty's Government the fullest information on questions vitally affecting the whole Empire, and of promoting the most perfect rapport with what a no distant day will be Greater Britain, I ventured to propound a means by which these objects could be obtained without in the least degree conflicting