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victory was assured. All that I have said in regard to Canada on this question may be said in reference to Australia. If those great colonies are suffering at this moment from financial embarrassment, it is because their credit has been strained in a loyal endeavour to open up their country for settlement and to provide the means of defence on land and sea.
I am glad to be able to inform Lord Thring that the law requires that the officer at the head of the Canadian Militia and Military Force shall be an officer of the Imperial Army, that he has always been selected by the Commander-in-Chief here, and that the Canadian Act provides that: “Whenever the militia or any part thereof is called out for active service by reason of war, invasion, or insurrection, Her Majesty may place them under the orders of the commander of her regular forces in Canada.'
In my former article, after dealing with what I considered a practicable mode of giving the outlying portions of the Empire the best means of making their opinions known on questions of foreign policy affecting them, and of securing cordial co-operation between them and the Imperial Government, I expressed the opinion that the Chancellor of the Exchequer would be able to devise with the three representatives of Canada, Australasia, and South Africa a fiscal policy that would be mutually advantageous, and at the same time greatly promote the development of the colonies and expand the trade of England. I offered at the same time some evidence to show that a small duty on corn would not necessarily
raise the price of bread. Here again I have been greatly misunderstood, and charged by my critics with asking everything and conceding nothing. I submit that my statement will not bear that construction, as I proposed the fiscal policy to be adopted should be settled with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on mutually advantageous terms. Long ago, in the Canadian House of Commons, I advocated the policy of a mutually preferential tariff between Canada and England. My mode of arranging it meets the objection raised by Mr. Goschen in a debate on this question in the House of Commons in 1891. He said : “ We ought to have securities from the colonies not merely that they would put a 5 per cent. extra on foreigners, but that their tariff itself should be such as would be likely to protect this country from loss.” The arrangement proposed by me would give that security, as it was to be made with the Chancellor of the Exchequer. It would ensure at the same time a great development in the colonies, and a corresponding expansion of the trade of this country by the increased demand for the products of British industry. No one who takes the trouble to investigate this subject can doubt the advantage of such a policy in stimulating the rapid progress of England's great fields for colonisation or the consequent expansion of British trade.
Even as matters now stand, the truism that trade follows the flag is placed beyond controversy by the statistics of the Empire. Lord Rosebery, in the speech to which I have alluded at the Chamber of Commerce at Leeds, gives conclusive evidence on this point. He said :
The United States have taken from us during
the last ten years an average of £24,350,000 of home produce. Their population is nearly 60,000,000, and, therefore, they have taken of our home produce at the rate of about 8s. per head. Now Canada, which, as you know, is coterminous with the United States, and which remains to us, has taken from us on an average £7,300,000 during the past ten years.
Take their population at 5,000,000, and that gives nearly 30s. per head, or nearly four times what the United States takes from us.
Well, but, gentlemen, you may say that the United States have a more hostile tariff against us than Canada has; but, if you think for a moment, you will remember that, if Canada were to leave us she would be pretty certain to adopt the tariff of the United States, and we should not be materially benefited by that proceeding. But let us consider the case of Australia. Australia takes from us on an average £24,250,000, or about the same as the whole of the United States, although its population is only about 3,250,000, or at the rate of £7 per head, being more than seventeen times more than the United States with its population of 60,000,000. Now, gentlemen, I wish to say that, on that ground of commercial interest alone, the question is worthy of the consideration of our great commercial communities.”
If, therefore, the effect of a duty on corn did slightly increase the cost of bread, the artisans of this country would, in my opinion, find abundant compensation in the increased employment resulting from this policy. But while my critics have challenged the accuracy of my assertion that the small duty suggested on foreign corn would not