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Debates of the Senate (Hansard)

1st Session, 36th Parliament,
Volume 137, Issue 3

Tuesday, September 30, 1997
The Honourable Gildas L. Molgat, Speaker


Table of Contents

THE SENATE

Tuesday, September 30, 1997

The Senate met at 2:00 p.m., the Acting Speaker, Richard J. Stanbury, in the Chair.

Prayers.

The Late John M. Macdonald

Tributes

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, many of you know that Cape Breton is a lovely place of deep valleys and spectacular vistas. Its quiet beauty, mixed with the rich culture and fierce pride of its inhabitants, makes it a place that instils incredible love and loyalty in those fortunate enough to call it home. As a matter of fact, there are those who still insist that there are two kinds of Cape Bretoners: those who were born there and those who wish they were born there. Some people even consider their birth on the island as a personal accomplishment, rather than a biological accident. Having said all of that, you will know that I speak with a lot of pride and just a little bit of prejudice.

Today I rise to pay tribute to one of Cape Breton's most outstanding native sons. One of the greatest tributes I can pay my old friend and colleague is that no man or woman ever bore greater love for Cape Breton; no man or woman ever bore more loyalty to its people than the late Senator John M. Macdonald.

He was buried on June 24, 1997: 37 years to the day he was called to the Senate by Prime Minister John Diefenbaker. If John Macdonald is looking down on us right now - as I am rather sure he is - he is probably having a good laugh at the irony of all that. I visited him personally shortly before he passed away. Tough and razor sharp, even in his final days, he always said he would leave the Senate when they carried him out.

I spent many a day and night in the Sydney airport travelling to and from Ottawa with John M. He was meticulously punctual, arriving as much as two hours before scheduled lift-off. He was easily recognizable by his hat, his slightly stooped figure, his ever-present cane in later years, his sizeable shoes - which will be very hard to fill - and his very determined step.

I am sure he chuckled, too, when the Senate delegation arrived at the Sydney Airport on the day of his funeral. Their arrival coincided with a rather large exercise being staged by the Canadian Armed Forces. The tarmac was dotted with several fighter planes, helicopters and big Hercules aircraft. It was probably the biggest display of force seen in that area since the convoys were assembled in Sydney Harbour during World War II. You could almost hear John M. say, "Boys, you really didn't have to go that far."

If he could speak to us now, he would be able to tell some wonderful stories. During those 37 years, he spent 22 of them as the Conservative caucus whip and participated in some of the most historic debates this country has witnessed. He would reminisce on the bitterness of the flag debate; he would tell us about the debate on capital punishment, in which he introduced his own private bill on abolition; he would recall the great patriation debate, his strong views on changes to the abortion law, the causes he championed which concerned transportation, veterans, fishermen, coalminers, steelworkers, and so many others.

(1410)

Think about it: John Macdonald's death at 91 meant an extraordinary career that spanned those of eight Prime ministers. John M. was loyal, direct and principled; honest as the sun.

Princes and lords are but the breath of kings,
`An honest man's the noblest work of God.'

Thus wrote Robert Burns. John M. was an honest, noble man, who served his party, his community, and the people of eastern Nova Scotia until the end. He is now at rest in his beloved Cape Breton. That is where his heart was; that is where it has always been, and that is why all of us who knew him so well still miss him so very much.

Hon. John Lynch-Staunton (Leader of the Opposition): Honourable senators, this afternoon I look along the front bench of my party to the place where John M. Macdonald sat for so many years; sat as if on action alert, ready to pop up in mid-debate and caution the Speaker that he was losing control of what was going on here in this chamber. When the tactic worked, he would sit back again, his hand on his cane, a twinkle in his eye, and on his face a wicked smile that would take in his regiment of friends on both sides of the chamber.

Diminutive he was, and hardly what you would call garrulous or persistent in argument. Each of us might have described him differently. He might have skippered the boat that carried Bonnie Prince Charlie to Skye! At least that is the way he seemed to me: Still; ready for the worst that the seas and winds might send; never perplexed by political wars; ever adaptable to the generosity of his fate.

In return for high standards of service, fate was kind through his 91 years. He was born in 1906, the year of the San Francisco earthquake, and like many of us he liked to pinpoint the milestones of his life with the miracles and disasters that coincided with his ups and downs.

When I paid tribute to him here on the occasion of his 90th birthday, I chose my words carefully when I said that:

He stands tall among us as a Canadian, as a Roman Catholic and as a Conservative. He is slavish to none of these faiths, but honest to all of them, even when they seem to be in conflict with one another.

In his reply to these comments and to those kind ones made by Senator Fairbairn as Leader of the Government - she called him a true example of excellence and dedication - he said very snappily:

As a young man entering politics, I had one resolution, namely: Do not believe all the things that are said about you, good or bad! The trouble is that after a while you get to believe it yourself.

He continued:

I must say it took me a long time to get a mention on the front page of the Cape Breton Post, but I finally made it after 90 years.

John Michael Macdonald was born in North Sydney, the son of a Nova Scotia cabinet minister. After Dalhousie and St. Francis Xavier universities and time as a school teacher, union officer and school principal, he served in the Nova Scotia legislature, the House of Commons, and, at the wish of Prime Minister John Diefenbaker, was dispatched to the Senate in 1960. When he became Conservative whip here, Government Leader Duff Roblin remarked:

He exemplifies the art of party management brought to its best degree. He is one of those men blessed with the gift of succinct expression.

The file of John M.'s speeches is a running commentary on the great events and political vexations that roused Canadian concerns in a long public career, which John M. topped with his final labours as the last of the lifers in the Senate. It is worth focusing briefly on some of those Macdonald occasions - just to get a measure of the man.

In 1971, as a member of the committee led by Senator David Croll in search of the roots of Canadian poverty, he said:

In our day and age, we are seeing the introduction in industry of machines and equipment which are wonderful to behold. They are contributing to a higher standard of living because they are doing away with routine work. Yet to those who performed that hard labour, it is small consolation to know that the general standard of living has risen.

Oil, natural gas and hydro power have been responsible for Nova Scotia coal losing much of its traditional market, and in most cases that market will never be regained, no matter how much assistance is given by government.

In March of 1981, Pierre Trudeau's romantic pursuit of constitutional change and a Charter of Rights and Freedoms was still disturbing the sleep of many Canadians. On that issue, John Macdonald said:

I do believe that what is required is a political, and not a legal, solution to the present dispute between the two levels of government. In a legal decision, someone will win and someone will lose, and this does not make for a happy future relationship. Not only that, but in a legal dispute concerning the relationship between governments, I think there is a danger that our judicial system might be adversely affected.

In October 1994, he gave his last major address before illness began to set in. There was much criticism of the Canadian Legion's denial of admission to their branches of people whose religion required them to wear head-dress at all times. He said:

I know many of the men from my small town who lost their lives in World War II. There were 68 of them. When I look around at that point in the meetings, I recognize many present are remembering someone close to them who did not survive. I, like others, may recall the first casualties from our town. They were two bright young men, one a university student, and the other an employee of the coal company. They joined the Air Force early in the war. One became the pilot and the other the wireless operator in the same plane. That plane was lost over the English Channel - they both died...

I do not know exactly when or where the custom -
- of removing hats -

- started. In any event, it became widespread. The custom became a policy, and the policy developed into a strong tradition. It is this tradition which has been the subject of so much criticism. It seems to me that most of this criticism has been ill-informed, misinformed or not informed at all.

Honourable senators, allow me to end on a personal note. John M. was as loyal a caucus member as one could hope for. Some would call it old-fashioned morality, but his principles always came first. I will not soon forget my telephoning him two years ago to ask if he could come to Ottawa for a key vote. I knew that he was having health problems, and I told him that obviously I would not, and could not, insist. "Nonsense," he said. "Of course I will be there, but I have to travel with two nurses." I said, "Oh, John, I am so sorry. I did not realize the extent of your illness." "Not that at all," he came right back. "I am just concerned with what people will say when they see me - a bachelor - travelling with two women, alone!"

May he rest in the peace he so richly deserves.

Hon. Lowell Murray: Honourable senators, my late friend and seatmate, Senator John M. Macdonald, brought honour to a family which, for many generations, has played a prominent role in many walks of life in Nova Scotia. As has been noted, his father was a Nova Scotia cabinet minister. His mother was a MacDonald with a capital D, and was a relative of the late Senator William MacDonald, who was appointed here in 1884 by Canada's first Prime Minister, and after whom Senator's Corner in Glace Bay was named.

Throughout much of this century, uncles, brothers, sisters, cousins, nephews and nieces have distinguished themselves in Nova Scotia in the church, in the legal and medical professions, in education, in business, and, of course, in politics.

To all the tributes that have been paid to Senator John M. on his passing, I want to add one word of appreciation of the tremendous support and encouragement he always gave to younger people and to their participation in the political process. That is particularly true for those who chose the Progressive Conservative Party as the instrumentality of their contribution, and it was even more particularly true of young people in Cape Breton. There are young people there whom he encouraged to the last months of his life, and others, now not so young, continue to remember his support, his generosity, and his encouragement with much respect and affection.

Finally - and party politics aside, which admittedly is no small aside where Senator Macdonald is concerned - I think he would have had something wonderfully droll to say, but nevertheless warmly approving, of the appointment of his cousin, Sister Peggy Butts, to this place as his successor senator from Cape Breton. He would surely have drawn not only on the family history but also on the vast knowledge of Cape Breton's political history to observe that Senator Butts is not the first member of the Butts family to have served in Parliament, but she is the first to have done so as a Liberal, her late uncle having served in the House of Commons and in both houses of the Nova Scotia legislature as a Tory. Senator Macdonald would want us on this side to extend a very warm welcome to Senator Butts, which we do.

(1420)

Hon. Senators: Hear, hear!

Senator Murray: Our late friend led an exemplary life in every way. He will be remembered for his efforts and for his services to young people, to war veterans - of whom he was one - to the underprivileged, the coalminers and the people in Cape Breton. He will be remembered most fondly there and in this chamber, where he was so warmly regarded and highly respected.

Hon. Joyce Fairbairn: Honourable senators, I, too, should like to add a few words of remembrance and appreciation for my good friend Senator John M. Macdonald, who came from an area of which I am enormously fond, Cape Breton Island.

As a senator in this place, John M. offered a very special brand of public service to his beloved island, to his province and to his country. He did so with a rich background as an educator, as a war veteran, and as a voice of wisdom within his party, to which he remained loyal to the end.

I attended his funeral in North Sydney. It was magnificent. Although it was a sad occasion, it was also one of tremendous warmth and pride for all of those who filled that beautiful church. I should say, in reflection almost of what Senator Murray said, that Senator John M. welcomed me with genuine support when I came to the Senate in 1984. The feeling was mutual to the end. I can corroborate Senator Lynch-Staunton's anecdote, not too long ago, about John M.'s exquisite sense of propriety in wishing to travel with two nurses and not one. He confided that as well to me with a very definite twinkle in his eye.

Honourable senators, his friendship and his humour will remain close to me because I am now in John M.'s former office. I truly hope that I will also absorb, from the many years that he spent there in service to this place and to his country, the sense of humour, wisdom and justice he observed throughout his life.

Hon. John Buchanan: Honourable senators, I concur with everything that has been said thus far about our dear late friend John M. I concur with everything Senator Graham said about his Cape Breton background. As a Cape Bretoner myself, I know that he was the number one Cape Bretoner. He was a champion of Cape Breton, a champion of Cape Bretoners, and a champion of fishermen, farmers, the underprivileged, the poor, steelworkers and miners. There was not a cause in Cape Breton in which John M. was not very much involved over his long and distinguished career. He was my friend for over 40 years. He campaigned for me in every election that I ran in in Nova Scotia.

Those of you who knew him back in the 1950s and 1960s, through the 1970s and into the 1980s, would agree with me that he was the number one politician in Cape Breton. He was a giant at the podium. In the 1967 provincial election, he became so excited during a speech that he hit the podium so hard that he literally broke it in two. It fell on the floor. I do not know how many of you had the opportunity that I had - I do not think you did, Senator Graham - of hearing him make political speeches. "Pinky" Gaum, who had spoken before him, broke the first podium and John M. broke the second, but that did not bother him one bit. He continued with his speech without missing a beat. He was number one in my books and in the books of many other people throughout Cape Breton and Nova Scotia.

Over the last year and a half, I had the occasion and the pleasure of dropping in to see him once a month, sometimes twice a month, at his home and in a hospital that he always called "John's Hospital." That is the hospital in Sydney Mines, which we built and which has borne my name since I opened it. I had called and asked Joe, his nephew, "Is John M. at home or is he in hospital?" He said, "He is in your hospital," and I knew immediately he was in the Sydney Mines Hospital.

I would go in to see him in the hospital in North Sydney, or drop in to see him in his home. One Saturday, on my way back from Sydney to Halifax, I pulled into North Sydney and went up to his home. I knocked on the door expecting one of the girls to come to the door, but no one came. Again I knocked on the door; no one came. I banged on the door and no one came. I said, "Oh, my goodness. I hope nothing has happened to John M." I walked around the house looking in the windows at the room where he always sat, and no one was there. I got on the phone and called Bob Muir, a colleague who is now retired from this place. I said, "Bob, has something happened to John M.?" He replied, "No, you fool. Do you not know it is Saturday night? He has gone to church." John M. was at mass. As Father MacNeil told me, every Saturday night that he was able, he went to mass. He was a deeply religious man. When I next dropped in to see him, he was in the hospital, and he told me that I should have known that he was in church because it was Saturday and he had to be in church by five o'clock.

John M. will be known as a person who had his priorities right. He was a family man. His brothers and sisters and his niece and nephew meant so much to him throughout his life, as did his other priorities: his church, his Cape Breton, his party and, of course, whatever he was doing at any time for people. He was a real people person, an educator, a lawyer, a veteran, and a member of the Legion.

He was extremely proud of the Royal Canadian Legion. The Legion at North Sydney honoured him. It was a wonderful night. You could feel the love for John M. in the Legion hall that night during the dinner on the occasion of his eighty-fifth birthday. I was invited to speak on that occasion. You could feel the love, admiration and respect for that man on any such occasion.

MLA, member of the Nova Scotia legislature, senator. There were so many things he did in his life, but, most of all, he did it for his fellow Cape Bretoners, fellow Nova Scotians and fellow Canadians. He served in the Second World War in the Royal Canadian army.

We will miss him. The people of North Sydney and Sydney Mines and all in that area will certainly miss him.

(1430)

The last time I saw him was in North Sydney on a Sunday afternoon. Linda was there with him in his room. He was able to speak, but only barely. Just before I left he asked her to pour a glass of whiskey for him and me. I am not a whiskey drinker, but I would drink whiskey with John M. in his office here before we would go to the parliamentary dining room. Even in the hospital John M. had a bottle of whiskey. He asked her to pour a drink for him and me. He was John M. and I am a John M. I can still hear him: "Now we will propose a toast to the two John M.s", and we did. Linda drank water. She was on duty.

John knew that my daughter is married to a fellow from Dublin, although they live in Halifax. I told him, "As I told you before, my son-in-law and daughter have been after me to go to Dublin to visit his parents. I am going on Tuesday John M., but I shall be back in ten days." He looked up at me from the bed and said, "I will try to stay on until you get back."

Unfortunately, he did not. I called Joe and Anne from Dublin. I spoke to Bob Muir and the others at the funeral home and almost decided to try to get a plane home, but of course that was impossible.

I will miss John M. I will miss him here. I will remember the conversations that I had with him through the years. I know that he must be very pleased and honoured, as he is looking down on us today, that Sister Peggy will continue his work, as she always has, of championing Cape Bretoners.

As Senator Murray said, I know how pleased John M. must be to know that you, Sister Peggy, are replacing him as a senator from Cape Breton. There is no doubt about that.

Well done thou good and faithful servant, John M. We all know that a place was reserved for you in heaven and we all know that you are watching over us from that place.

Hon. J. Michael Forrestall: Honourable senators, I shall be brief. First, I want to associate myself with the remarks of those who have spoken in tribute to John M. Like John Michael and John M. Buchanan, I am a John M. myself. We have a peculiar little world.

What has been said about John M. is, of course, true. So circumspect was he, indeed, that on the occasion of his ninetieth birthday he would not let anyone tell his staff because he felt that might lead to an invitation to them to come to Cape Breton. He said, "What would the people of Cape Breton think if I showed up with a woman on my arm?"

He had that sense of humour, that sense of correctness, that sense of giving without looking down. He made us all feel a little bigger and a little better. I had known him, like Senator Buchanan and Senator Graham, since the mid-1950s when I first became associated with Bob Stanfield.

John M. left a legacy that will not early or easily be forgotten. I have known no man, or very few, who, in such a distinguished but quiet way, had such a great influence on so many individuals. John M. Macdonald influenced people to goodness. He influenced them to care and concern for their fellow beings.

I want to add to what has been said today only this little footnote: Many of you will recall that there was commissioned a bust of John Michael Macdonald which sits in a place of distinction in our precinct. Alas, John M.'s eyesight was failing quite badly and he never really did see the bust. He felt it and he knew what it was, of course.

As Senator Buchanan has said, his eyesight did come back to some degree in the last week or ten days. The staff of our chamber colleagues had a photograph of that bust taken and enlarged to quite a good size. Marilyn and I took it to show to him just three or four days before he passed on. He saw the bust and he was pleased. He turned to Bob Muir and said, "I guess they do care." Of course we care, John Michael. We care very, very much.

Robert Muir would love to be here to regale us, as only he and Senator Buchanan can, with stories that surround John Michael Macdonald; a soldier, a gentleman, a teacher and, above all, a politician. He made politics an honourable profession in the 35 years that I have been involved in it, and it will be to his standard that I will, without any hesitation, look as I finish my sojourn through this place.

Hon. Ethel Cochrane: Honourable senators, I rise with a tremendous sense of sadness to mourn the loss of the Honourable John M. Macdonald. I deeply regret that I was unable to attend his memorial service. I was away from home at the time and did not receive notice of his death until the day of the service. I have only the fondest memories of John M. I treasured him as the institutional memory of our caucus. He had a remarkable ability to recollect the details of elections, the events of the Diefenbaker years and the politics and the issues that came and went during his many years in Ottawa.

John M. was a true Cape Bretoner with the politics of that region in his blood. He served Cape Breton well during his long career in the Senate. He was a true Conservative, serving for two decades as whip and caucus chair. His commitment to this party was both remarkable and admirable. In any circumstances, in any kind of weather, regardless of the inconvenience, John M. was there for his party, just as he was for his region and his country.

John M. was a friend. He was a colleague I could rely on for advice, wisdom, a wealth of experience, a diverting or entertaining anecdote, or simply his warmth, his cheerful spirit and his camaraderie. I shall miss him.

(1440)

The Hon. the Acting Speaker: Honourable senators, if there are no further tributes to the late Honourable Senator Macdonald, I would ask you to rise with me to observe one minute of silence out of respect for our departed colleague.

Honourable senators then stood in silent tribute.

The Late Honourable Pietro Rizzuto

Tributes

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, when I think of the passing of our esteemed colleague Senator Pietro Rizzuto, I think of the conversation that ensued between a few of Andrew Jackson's friends at the time of his death. One friend asked the other if he thought the former President of the United States would go to heaven. "He will if he wants to," was the response. He will if he wants to, with pure determination, energy and a dynamic heart, plus all the other exceptional qualities of a most exceptional man.

Most of us know the story of Pietro's tireless spirit. Born in Sicily in 1934, he came to Canada at the age of 20. He shovelled snow. He paved roads. Ultimately, he became the driving force behind a highly successful construction business in his beloved Laval. No task was too great; no contribution too much. He supported junior hockey, the Boy Scouts and the Optimist Club.

Profoundly proud of his Italian roots, he founded the Federation of Italian Associations in Quebec in 1972, and served honourably as Canada's attaché to the Montreal Olympics in 1976.

[Translation]

Senator Rizzuto had an unconditional passion for his country. That passion was rooted in the very heart of the young Sicilian who arrived here with a dream: a Canada that is very special, now and in the future; a conviction that freedom is not free but hard won; a belief that being Canadian comes with duties, not just rights.

[English]

After one of his visits to England, Sir Wilfrid Laurier once remarked on the harmonious beauty of a Gothic cathedral that he had visited. He spoke of the wonderful unity of the cathedral, a unity unerringly moulded from the diversity of granite, oak and the marble used in its construction. He said that it was the perfect illustration of the kind of nation that he wanted Canada to be, a country whose strength was unity through diversity, a harmonious whole in which the granite remains the granite, the oak remains the oak, and the marble remains the marble.

When I heard Pietro's children speak in English, French, Italian and Spanish at their father's funeral, I thought of Laurier's dream. I thought, "Here is a living example of the kind of wonderful multiculturalism that has made our flag loved and respected around the planet. Here is the realization of the vision, the determination and the energy of a young man from Sicily, a young man who immersed himself completely in the economic, social and political life of his adopted country." I thought about a great Canadian who died too young.

To his wife, Pina, who is with us in the gallery today, his children, Melina, Alfonso, Maria Christina and the members of his extended family, we extend our expression of the deepest sympathy.

Riposa in pace, mio caro amico.

[Translation]

Hon. Roch Bolduc: Honourable senators, I did not know Senator Rizzuto until I came to the Senate. I came to know him here, and to appreciate his great qualities. Some of his good friends were on this side, for instance Senators Charbonneau and Beaulieu.

The latter senator introduced him to me with glowing praise, even though they were competitors in private life. Senator Riel also knew him well, and shared that opinion.

During the hectic times surrounding the GST debate, I found what was going on here in this august setting rather scandalous. I saw how impressively calm Senator Rizzuto remained. It was obvious that he did not approve of the way our sittings were going either, and we exchanged our impressions outside the chamber as we walked back to our offices, which were near each other.

He was a man of sound judgment, full of practical common sense, wisdom and moderation, greatly devoted to the public good, and appreciative of how lucky we were to live in this wonderful country.

Of humble Sicilian origins, Senator Rizzuto earned his laurels here through hard and honest work in a developing market.

He had a strong sense of family, and his investments here and elsewhere provided much work to his family members and to many of his fellow countrymen.

His funeral, held at Laval-sur-le-Lac, was heavily attended and was evidence to us all of the important place he held within his family and his community. It moved us all to see the Bishop weeping for the loss of his brother Pietro.

His immigration in the 1950s marked the start of a rise to the upper ranks of the Canadian public service, based on that quiet strength that is the mark of greatness.

[English]

Hon. Joyce Fairbairn: Honourable senators, I wish to pay tribute as well to a friend of some 20 years who has left us far too soon.

Senator Pietro Rizzuto was, as others have said, a loyal Canadian. He was a loyal Quebecer. There was never any doubt where Senator Rizzuto stood when it came to his country. He was a devoted federalist and active in promoting Canadian unity with an almost fervent passion and conviction. He also was extremely active in the Liberal Party of Canada, of which he was tremendously proud.

Over the years, I had the opportunity to work closely with Pietro, particularly in the activities before, during and after the 1993 election. I can attest that his passion for organization was truly legendary, as was his enthusiasm. For him, politics was a privilege. It was fundamental to the operation of a free and effective democracy. He actively pursued those convictions right to the very end.

He had every reason to take pride in his opportunities and achievements in and contributions to both the public and the private sectors in Canada. However, his deepest feelings were for his family, whom he loved, of whom he spoke often and of whom he was tremendously proud. I know they will miss him a great deal. I assure them all that we here will miss him, too. God bless you.

[Translation]

Hon. Marcel Prud'homme: Honourable senators, I think that all French Canadians in Quebec know that I have lost a good friend. Unfortunately, he died when I was on a tour of several Middle Eastern countries. I was therefore unable to attend the funeral myself, although my family was represented at the ceremony and I did express my sympathy by telephone.

I must tell you that I did not know Pietro Rizzuto in the seventies. It was Monseigneur André-Marie Cimichella who mentioned him to me. He told me that he was a hard-working family man and that he would be a great help if he were to agree to serve in the Senate. This goes back many years to when Mr. Trudeau was Prime Minister. And so it was that Pietro Rizzuto came to be in the Senate.

There are many things about him that are not widely known. At the most important moment of our life in Quebec, at the time of the language issue, he served as a wonderful bridge between the French Canadians and those who were ready to fight them to the last Italian in Saint-Léonard, as I always said. Pietro Rizzuto stepped in because he understood what it was to be a French Canadian in Quebec. He understood the language issue and the school issue.

I hope that all those familiar with the language issue - which almost drove a wedge between us and our blood brothers, as I call my Italian friends - will write about this part of Pietro Rizzuto's life.

I need hardly tell you that no one succeeded in casting a cloud over our friendship, although attempts were made when I left the House of Commons for the Senate. I am grateful to the senator and his entire family for their continued friendship.

When we travel, we discover many things about our colleagues that we do not see in the Senate or in the province, and this was true when I travelled in Italy with Pietro. The last trip we made together was when I had the pleasure of introducing him to Mr. Castro in Cuba, at a time when there were opportunities for economic development. Senator Rizzuto was always on the lookout for anything that could boost the economy of Quebec and of our country. I learned a lot from him.

To his wife and children, I extend an invitation to drop into my office any time you are in Ottawa. We will celebrate Pietro Rizzuto's memory as friends should.

[English]

Hon. Peter Bosa: Honourable senators, I should like to associate myself with those senators who preceded me in paying tribute to Senator Rizzuto.

Senator Rizzuto was very active in community work. He was president and founder of the Federation of Italian Associations of Quebec and founder of the Quebec Chapter of the National Congress of Italian Canadian Foundation, an organization that became national in scope and was established for the purpose of providing a voice for the dozens of associations and clubs of Italian origin in every part of Canada.

It was through the NCIC that I met Senator Rizzuto in the mid-1970s. In 1976, when a major earthquake hit the region of Friuli, the National Congress of Italian Canadians organized a fund-raising campaign to help the victims of that earthquake, raising sufficient funds to build 190 permanent housing units and two senior citizen homes, which provided accommodation for some 900 persons. It was during this period that I worked very closely with Senator Rizzuto and learned to appreciate his qualities. He was a person of commitment and dedication, and he made a great contribution to the project of assistance to the earthquake homeless of Friuli. He was involved in community endeavours throughout his life. For his community work, he received many awards, among them, the Honorary Citizen of the City of Laval and the Grande Ufficiale Order of Merit from the Republic of Italy.

Senator Rizzuto, from a humble beginning, rose to become a prominent businessman, a spokesperson for the Italian community, and a successful politician. He occupied positions of great prestige in the Liberal Party: Co-chairman of the National Election Readiness Committee and President of the Quebec Electoral Commission of the Liberal Party in 1986.

However, above all, Senator Rizzuto was a family man, a loving husband and an affectionate father. To Mrs. Rizzuto and her family, my heartfelt condolences.

The Hon. John Buchanan: Honourable senators, I should like to say a few words about Pietro Rizzuto.

As has been said, he was very proud of his Italian roots. I knew him, not through my relationship with him in the Senate, but through his relationship with the Italian communities of Cape Breton. Way back in 1980, the provincial government had a banquet at the UCCB in Cape Breton, and we had a ceremony marking the first trans-Atlantic wireless message from North America to Europe, which was sent from Table Head in Glace Bay to Europe.

Present at that ceremony - I remember it so well - were Governor General Ed Schreyer and his wife Lily; myself and my wife; Leno Pologato, who was president of the Italian Association of Cape Breton and lived in the first Italian community of Canada, in Dominion, where Senator Graham is from; and a captain of an Italian battleship that had come over to be at this big event. We held a reception aboard that battleship in Sydney Harbour. Of course, there were many others present, but the one that I remember most was Senator Pietro Rizzuto, whom I had never met before. He was there representing the Italian communities of Canada and for his fellow countryman Guglielmo Marconi. Present also was Marconi's daughter, Mrs. Marconi-Braga, who was living in New Jersey at the time. We had a wonderful afternoon and a tremendous banquet.

I sat next to him at the banquet. We had quite an interesting discussion, not about politics, not about the Senate. He spoke so glowingly about his roots, the Italian communities throughout this country, and the fact that he was a fervent Canadian. I found him a most interesting individual on that occasion.

One of the things I remember also was that we had arranged a telecommunications-television hook-up with the presidential palace in Rome, and Governor General Schreyer spoke to the President of Italy, even though at that time it was about two o'clock in the morning in Italy. That night we had televisions set up on both sides of the Atlantic, and they had a great conversation to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the first trans-Atlantic wireless message from North America to Great Britain.

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Shortly after that, I rose to speak at a federal-provincial conference and made mention of that occasion. Brian Peckford got very upset with me because, he said, it did not happen in Cape Breton at all. Well, it did happen in Cape Breton. Senator Rizzuto and I talked about that many times in the years since I came to this place. The Governor General, Rod Maloney, the Italian consul for the provinces, Senator Pietro Rizzuto and I unveiled a plaque to his countryman, Guglielmo Marconi.

The next day, I arranged for a helicopter to take Senator Rizzuto, the Governor General, Mrs. Braga, Rod Maloney and me to Sugar Loaf in the highlands of Cape Breton, where we unveiled another plaque, and it is still there. Senator Graham and I were back there in June to commemorate Giovanni Caboto's first landfall in North America at Sugar Loaf. The plaque is still there.

The next time I met Senator Rizzuto was at the opening of the Marconi Museum in Glace Bay. Again, it is another bone of contention between Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, but the plaque is there. We opened the museum, which is one of the finest museums you will find in Canada.

When I came to this place over six years ago, I was so pleased to renew my friendship with Pietro Rizzuto. Many times we would go into the reading room and talk about those days in Cape Breton when we honoured his two countrymen, Marconi and Caboto.

Honourable senators, Senator Pietro Rizzuto was a dear man, a dear friend, and we will all miss him. I extend my sincere sympathy to his family.

Hon. Jerahmiel S. Grafstein: Honourable senators, I sat next to Pietro Rizzuto in this chamber for close to a decade, and at practically every session we exchanged our views. In his quiet and gentle manner, I came to appreciate his artfulness and his astuteness in all things political, particularly with respect to Quebec. I came to understand that he was a passionate Canadian who loved his community, his province, and he was a living link to all the rich, varied, unique and distinct societies that make up Quebec.

Pietro most of all believed in loyalty. He was loyal to his friends; he was loyal to his leader; he was loyal to our party. He was, for me, the ultimate loyalist.

At his moving and magnificent memorial service in Laval-sur-le-Lac this summer, five languages were spoken and sung - Latin, English, French, Italian and Spanish - for he was so closely and so strongly rooted in each of those cultures. As we listened to the beautiful operatic voices and music that Pietro loved so much, we could see and feel his presence among us. It was, honourable senators, a most fitting conclusion and tribute to an outstanding career of public and community service.

To his wife, Pina, and his family, we offer our condolences and our memories.

Pietro will be sorely missed for his strength, his sensibility, his sagacity and, above all, for his service to Canada, which he loved so very much. Pietro, pax vobiscum. Ciao, Pietro.

[Translation]

Hon. Lise Bacon: Honourable senators, much has been written and said, but today I would like to tell you about a friend who passed away on August 3, a friend for whom I had the greatest respect, as did most of you in this house, I am sure.

I would have liked to celebrate the 25th anniversary of my first meeting with Pietro Rizzuto, which is coming up in a few months, but fate has decided otherwise. At the young age, much too young, of 63, Senator Pietro Rizzuto departed suddenly from this world, leaving a large family and a very large circle of friends utterly bereft.

A sensitive, generous, courageous, upright and devoted man, Senator Rizzuto leaves behind a major legacy, in particular for Canadians from Quebec.

The story of Senator Rizzuto's life is the stuff legends are made of, because his life is the dream of any immigrant coming to Canada without any money. He liked to share the memories of his first years here.

A son of a Sicilian peasant, he arrived in Montreal in the dead of winter, in 1954. As was mentioned earlier, it was by shovelling snow along the tracks that Pietro Rizzuto earned his first dollars. Through his hard work, perseverance and determination, he became successful.

Pietro's life did not only revolve around business. He liked to be active in social and political organizations. In 1972, he became the founding chairman of the Quebec Federation of Italian Associations, among others; during his last years, he also served at the Cité de la santé in Laval. He was always very active and respected in the community; like a guide, he was constantly being consulted.

Senator Rizzuto loved politics. The Liberal Party of Canada and the current government owe much to him. Giving unsparingly of his time and energy, Senator Rizzuto literally rebuilt the Liberal Party of Canada after 1984.

He played a key role in the selection of the new leader in 1990 and he worked as chairman of the Liberal Party's campaign committee in Quebec during the 1993 general election.

In 1976, Senator Rizzuto was the first Canadian of Italian origin to be appointed to the Senate, where he fought on every occasion for Canada, but also for Quebec. He stoutly defended the principles underlying the charter of the French language, and Quebec's powers over language.

Senator Rizzuto was proud of his humble origins, and proud as well of his personal and career successes, proud of his country of Canada, proud to be a Quebecer, and terribly proud of his family.

Senator Rizzuto learned French long before he learned English, and conversations at his house were primarily in French, a matter of principle for him since he had chosen to live in French Quebec and his integration into Quebec society was always a source of pride to him.

He was also a man of tolerance and rapprochement, the very example of the fundamental human virtues that have always been a source of Canada's strength, and that it needs now more than ever.

Yes, honourable senators, I shall miss him, his judicious advice, his presence in this house. I consider it a privilege to have benefited from his friendship for nearly 25 years. We have lost a great Canadian and a good senator. I have lost a great friend. I send condolences as a friend to Pina, Melina, Cristina, his adoring grandchildren, his brothers and sisters.

Hon. Lucie Pépin: Honourable senators, I should like to add to the testimonials by my Senate colleagues the words spoken by the Honourable Marc Lalonde on the day of Senator Rizzuto's funeral, and I quote:

On behalf of all the friends of Senator Pietro Rizzuto, on behalf of the thousands who filed past his coffin, on behalf of all those in Canada, in Mexico, and in Italy, his native Sicily in particular, all those who knew him and were prevented by distance from coming to express their sympathies in person, I would like to express to his widow, Pina, his children and grandchildren, our most sincere condolences and the assurance of our faithful friendship. We were as shocked as they at the sudden passing of someone who, despite his title of Senator, will remain in the memories of almost all of us quite simply and affectionately as Pietro.

Over the years, we got to know the attributes of this exceptional man, his total intellectual, moral and professional integrity. With Pietro, we always knew where we stood, and his word always sufficed.

We discovered his generosity, with his own possessions of course. Who could forget the lavish receptions on the occasion of the marriage of his children or the substantial and hospitable spread he put on to celebrate Saint-Jean-Baptiste. Also, and more importantly, there were his many acts of kindness to his Quebec or Mexican employees or his Italian compatriots. We need only think of the vital role he played in raising several million dollars in Canada for the people of Friuli in northern Italy, who were victims of a disastrous earthquake. He was generous with his possessions, his time, his energy, and most importantly with his heart. We saw this generosity in action not only here but in Nuevo Vallarta in Mexico and in the village of his birth in Sicily. No individual, no matter how humble, failed to warrant his interest, his attention and his help. In his adopted country and province, his generosity developed in him moderation and tolerance that stood him in particularly good stead as a leader of the Italian Canadian community by making it possible for this community to ease gently into Quebec society and Canadian society as a whole.

Later on, after becoming involved in Canadian politics, in difficult times when volunteers were few, he would take on major responsibilities in revitalizing his party - an unrewarding task if ever there was one.

Finally, who can forget his natural nobility and Sicilian pride, so rightly deserved, that made Pietro so endearing? He taught us a virtue that is fading in this century, that of honour.

I hope that someone will keep alive the memory of this man people know too little about by writing his story. They will find him a remarkable example of the huge contribution made to our country and province by the millions of men and women who, from all of the world's countries, have chosen to come here in the 20th century. It will serve as a source of inspiration to all those who, in the future, want to serve their fellow citizens asking nothing for themselves.

Arrivederci, Pietro. Non ti dimenticheremo. We will not forget you.

Hon. Léonce Mercier: Honourable senators, it is with great emotion that I am going to speak to you today of a man who was both a colleague and a very dear friend, Senator Pietro Rizzuto. I should like his family to know that I am well aware of just how much he accomplished, of his tenacity, and of the courage with which he performed his weighty duties and responsibilities within the Liberal Party of Canada. Only his family and those who worked closely with him are privy to this information, and I count myself among the latter.

In 1978 the two of us teamed up for the Liberal Party of Canada's fund-raising campaign. Under the direction of Senator Dalia Wood, Senator Rizzuto and I worked all out to get 67 out of 75 members elected in Quebec in the 1979 federal election on May 22.

It was then that Senator Rizzuto brilliantly combined responsibilities and achievements. On December 14, 1979, a general election was called. On February 18, 1980, Senator Rizzuto and I contributed to a resounding victory: 74 Liberals elected out of 75.

In May 1980, we were in the full swing of Quebec's referendum on sovereignty-association. This umbrella committee, drawn from all provincial and federal parties, and created and represented for the referendum period by the provincial opposition leader, Claude Ryan, intervened. As general manager of the Liberal Party of Canada, Quebec section, I asked the Honourable Jean Chrétien, Minister of Justice and co-chair of the umbrella committee, if Senator Rizzuto could join me. The Senator accepted enthusiastically and made an outstanding contribution.

Those of us on the executive of the umbrella committee had our work cut out for us. Helped along by Senator Rizzuto's diplomacy, determination and belief in what he was doing, the committee was able to surmount the greatest challenges.

Senator Rizzuto was asked to supervise the 74 Liberal members who campaigned and worked for the No side at the regional and county levels. He was also responsible, again with the executive, for gathering the support of the business people, a task at which he was very successful.

He was also in charge of organizing a demonstration with seniors. Again, our expectations were exceeded, what with the overwhelming participation of all these groups.

Also, he sat on the strategy committee, which held some 30 meetings, even during weekends. Senator Rizzuto always attended like the real trooper he was. I do not think he missed any of these meetings.

On the evening of the No victory, I could not believe the incredible number of people who thanked him for his dedication to the cause that was so dear to his heart: Canada. However, humble as ever, he told everyone that they could not have won without the remarkable contribution of the "Yvette" movement, led by women, not to mention the continuous support of the representatives of all parties. He would say that we reached our goal thanks to the support and dedication of all those who worked for the No side.

After the 1980 referendum, Senator Rizzuto took part in fundraising campaigns for the Quebec wing of the Liberal Party of Canada. In 1981, 1982 and 1983, he was very successful in raising millions of dollars.

I could never understand how this businessman could get so totally immersed in all kinds of social endeavours and still manage to be a regular figure in the Senate and be so effective. He was a remarkable man.

I could go on and on, but I will stop here.

In spite of our friendship, I always addressed Senator Rizzuto as "vous," in French, or Senator. He would always tell me: Léonce, call me Pietro. But I kept calling him Senator and using the formal "vous." He found this to be annoying and it made him feel quite uncomfortable.

When Senator Rizzuto passed away, I thought I should give him a small present. I did it in the letter of sympathy I wrote to his family, and which I will now read:

Dear Mrs. Rizzuto,

It is with great sadness that I learned of the passing of my colleague and friend Pietro. I wish to offer to you and your family my most sincere condolences.

My prayers are with you in this time of sorrow.

Sincerely yours.

I would like to conclude by reiterating my sincere condolences to his wife Pina, his three children and his numerous relatives. Pietro, we will miss you. Rest assured that this is just an au revoir. Thank you Pietro. I salute you and I applaud you.

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Hon. Marisa Ferretti Barth: Honourable senators, I am both honoured and proud to speak for the first time in this house by paying tribute to the Honourable Pietro Rizzuto, whom I have known well for the past 30 years, from the time I began doing social and community work for the Italian community. I also feel a certain sadness.

I wish to offer my deepest sympathy to his wife, Pina, his children, Melina, Alfonso and Maria Christina, and their partners, his grandchildren, all the members of his family and his many friends, and also my assurance that I will not forget him.

We in Quebec's Italian-speaking community knew Pietro, when he was among the workers, and after, when he sat in the Senate. Like them we are devastated by the sudden departure of the person everyone called simply "the senator." It will be with both respect and esteem that we remember this noble, generous, devoted, proud and endearing man, who will provide an example and inspiration for many. I would express my admiration for his enduring work and I would say again to his family that the Italian population of Quebec will not forget him.

The Hon. the Speaker: Honourable senators, I would ask you to please rise to observe one minute of silence in honour of the memory of our colleague and friend Pietro Rizzuto.

Honourable senators then stood in silent tribute.

The Honourable Guy Charbonneau, B.A., C.I.D., C.L.J.

Tributes on Retirement

Hon. John Lynch-Staunton (Leader of the Opposition): Honourable senators, having had the advantage of knowing Guy Charbonneau for a long time before becoming a member of this house, I freely admit that the words I wish to say in tribute to him are coloured highly by my deep feelings for him.

[English]

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Whether one was there or not, all would prefer to forget the disgraceful scenes that marked this chamber in the fall of 1990. When memories of it finally fade into vagueness, it will eventually, I hope, become but an unfortunate footnote in the history of the Canadian Parliament, except for one element that will never be forgotten. Reaction to certain of then Speaker Charbonneau's decisions went way beyond the bounds of acceptable parliamentary conduct, as he was insulted, threatened, vilified and even physically abused. Through it all he stood taller than those heaping abuse on him, never flinching, never replying in kind.

This is not an apology for Senator Charbonneau's decisions, but a vivid illustration of the great courage that has always exemplified his life - courage coupled with great distinction. This should have come as no surprise to those familiar with the bravery he demonstrated while on active service in Europe during World War II.

He has been a successful businessman and an invaluable supporter of the Conservative Party in Quebec, whose fortunes more often than not are about on the same level as those of the Liberal Party in Alberta.

He served in this chamber for nearly 18 years, nine of them as Speaker. In this latter role, he was called upon many times to represent his country at home and abroad and always did so with gentle modesty and convincing flair.

For some time Guy has been slowed down by a serious affliction and he is facing it with his usual fearless determination, which we all pray will contribute to its elimination.

[Translation]

Yesterday, Guy and his lovely wife, Yolande, celebrated their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary. I extend my congratulations and best wishes to this couple to whom we are greatly indebted for their loyalty and dedication to the Senate.

[English]

May they have many more happy years together.

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, someone once said that politics is not a good vocation for anyone who is thin skinned or lacking a sense of humour. How well all of us should understand that saying. When Senator Guy Charbonneau retired from this place he had, no doubt, thought many times of this very pertinent observation. As a veteran of World War II and captain with the proud regiment Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal, he well knew the full import of Sir Winston Churchill's famous observation in which he compared politics to war. He noted that in wartime you can be killed only once, but in politics many times.

As the longest serving Senate Speaker in Canadian history, Senator Charbonneau has no doubt experienced many times the full import of Harold Wilson's wry assertion that in politics a week can be a very long time.

[Translation]

Honourable senators, I remember a letter that Senator Charbonneau wrote ten years ago. That letter, which supported the Senate and the important work it does, was circulated all over the country.

[English]

At the beginning of this session, and on the eve of a new chapter of our service to the people of Canada, we might want to reflect on Senator Charbonneau's words. He wrote:

When is the press going to start recognizing that the Senate has been on the leading edge of just about every issue - things like free trade with the United States, radar defence in the North, the scourge of soil erosion, such as that leading to the tragedy in Ethiopia and, yes, even Senate reform.

On the leading edge: on the leading edge of the study of child poverty; on the leading edge of studies into media concentration; on the leading edge of studies into science and technology and studies into the revolutionary changes in telecommunications; on the leading edge of an ongoing intensive review of financial services. On all these subjects, on all these fronts, the Senate, though seldom misunderstood and often misjudged, served as the guardian at the gate. But that role carries with it grave and onerous responsibilities; it carries with it grave and onerous duties; it carries with it the recognition that the times demand that in everything we do we remain true to our sovereign and to ourselves.

[Translation]

Speaker Charbonneau served this house in both good and bad times. He witnessed major events that marked the history of this house. On the occasion of his retirement, we thank him for the many years he has given to the Senate and his country.

Hon. Normand Grimard: Honourable senators, Senator Guy Charbonneau is a name that reminds me of my introduction to the Senate, all the more so since we were both sworn in on September 27, he in 1979 and I in 1990. For me, it was at a time when, in the upper house that is revered so much by everyone here, days merged into nights. The Honourable Senator Charbonneau embodied continuity during those weeks and those months when life in the Senate resembled a voyage in troubled waters without life-jackets.

[English]

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Today, Senator Charbonneau is an ordinary Canadian once again but one to whom this country is indebted for many services. An astute business person, he led a number of trade missions abroad and was equally successful in hosting a great many other missions. Without his exceptional insight, a great many projects would never have seen the light of day. Canada is, without question, indebted to him for a number of overseas contracts. Without his intervention, many of those new markets would have been conquered by other countries.

[Translation]

Senator Charbonneau has a very personal sense of modesty and an even deeper sense of friendship. I rather suspect he will hold today's remarks against me. I know he has always been very protective of his private life.

As a parliamentarian, Senator Charbonneau has not only been Speaker in the Senate for nine years, which is a record in itself, but also an extraordinary ambassador for our economy, both for job creation and investment. He has played his role well. I think he has carried out his mandate with a determination that is equal to the pride he takes in all he does. Honourable Senator Charbonneau has now moved to a quieter life. As our former colleague Solange Chaput-Rolland would say, he will enjoy the benefits of aging. That is what we call retirement, although I doubt that term is appropriate in his case.

Like myself, Guy Charbonneau has always been faithful to the Progressive Conservative Party. He made that choice at a time when it was no way to win a popularity contest in Quebec. Senator Charbonneau is first of all a man of conviction. Once he makes a decision, he has the merit to carry it through with courage and consistency, sometimes retreating behind a shell impervious to criticism, as I once wrote.

[English]

Senator MacEachen was honoured in this house on June 19, 1996. Prior to his departure after 43 years as a member of Parliament, minister, senator and later Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Senator MacEachen stated, as recorded at page 747 of the Debates of the Senate:

I believed when I came into the Senate as I do now, that the Senate has a legislative role and the authority to amend and to defeat; but, in doing so, it must make all those careful calculations that will ensure that it is not bringing opprobrium upon itself in so doing.

Still unresolved, however, and perhaps impossible to determine is the issue of the extent to which the Senate can be combative in its own way without encroaching on the House of Commons' prerogatives or responsibility for finance.

[Translation]

I wish Senator Charbonneau a retirement filled with joy and reconciliation rather than division. Still, this should not keep me from having personal memories, and I have quite a few, believe me. For me, Guy Charbonneau is synonymous with a series of vivid, indelible and unforgettable events.

For all the stormy days and the calm ones, the good times and the bad, the praise and the criticism, I have but two words: thank you!

Hon. Marcel Prud'homme: Honourable senators, my great friendship with Senator Charbonneau was never a secret. We have known each other for many years and we have discussed politics for a long time.

How many times, around 1979-80, did he try to convince me to join the ranks of the Conservative Party, knowing full well that was an impossible task? I will not forget all these memories. I listened to my good friend Senator Grimard and to the other honourable senators who paid tribute to Senator Charbonneau, and I support their comments about his great knowledge of economic, trade and international issues.

Senator Charbonneau was always surprised at how little interest I had in such important matters. Still, I always wanted to learn, and if I could have chosen my mentor, he would have been my first choice.

Honourable Senator Charbonneau, I wish you a happy retirement and excellent health.

[English]

Hon. Richard J. Doyle: Honourable senators, sometimes we must wait for untimely but divine intervention or the celebration of a seventy-fifth birthday to hear much said about the special skills and good works of colleagues who share time with us in the Senate.

I am especially glad today to hear from Senators Prud'homme and Grimard and Senators John Lynch-Staunton and Al Graham, a beginning of the cataloguing of the good works of Guy Charbonneau, a wise senator whose accomplishments have for too long a time been buried by those in frantic need of a scapegoat for the wars in this house.

The sharpest barbs, we must agree, were aimed by politicians like ourselves. For that, the price of absolution will be steep. Almost equal penance will be demanded for the people of the media who joined the search for evidence that was never found to support these wild accusations.

When I came to the Senate, I found Senator Charbonneau to be a willing guide and confidant - a calm and calming influence upon the chamber. As his reputation grew with his competence in the job of Speaker, his availability as a target advanced. As a newspaper writer and editor, I believed in the good work the fourth estate could do in muckraking, but the work is delicate and requires a careful capacity to acknowledge eventually that a cold trail sometimes means that no trail exists.

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In his time, Senator Charbonneau has encountered graver dangers than those that pursued him in the battles in this house. Like Senator Lynch-Staunton, I pray that his future will be as was his past, calm and calming.

In the meantime, I hope that he might see some humour in a poem by Herbert Lench Pottle:

The rain descendeth from above
Upon the just and unjust fellow;
But mostly on the just
Because the unjust
Has the just's umbrella.

The Honourable Doris M. Anderson

Tributes on Retirement

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, as I listened to Senator Doris Anderson speak in this chamber, I often thought of the famous Island spirit in the gentle province where the Fathers of Confederation negotiated the Terms of Union and conceived the great national dream. In fact, she personifies the well-known Island conviction that any man or woman, no matter how modest their origins, must test their abilities to the maximum, always believing that no man or woman is better than any other.

Senator Anderson has been driven all her life to leave the world a better place than she has found it. She has been driven by a commitment to our young as a teacher of home economics at Prince of Wales College and the University of Prince Edward Island for 32 years. She has been driven by the struggle against celiac disease in her research. She has been driven by the spirit of scholarship in her prolific writings.

I have often thought of her energy and commitment to the service of others, a commitment that won her the Order of Canada back in 1982. That drive and energy reminds me of Nellie McClung's famous observation that women have cleaned up things since time began, and if women get into politics, there will be a cleaning up of pigeon-holes and forgotten corners in which the dust of years have fallen.

Honourable senators who have served with Senator Anderson on committee know that her industry and perseverance have ensured no forgotten corners. No dust has accumulated when Doris has been around. That, in spite of some of the people who followed her at that wonderful institution known as Acadia University, the one-time home of Senators Stewart, Atkins and Oliver.

Senator Anderson has moved all of us with her love for her home province and of her country. On Remembrance Day last, lest we forget, she reminded us that Prince Edward Island, in terms of population, had the highest per capita enlistment of any place in Canada in World War II and, tragically, it had the highest casualty rate as well.

I have been impressed by the depth of her commitment to medicare, the soul of our nation, to human rights, and in particular to the advancement of Canadian women in the service of their country. Honourable senators, that advancement enlightens this chamber, enlightens our hearts and enlightens our minds. That advancement has brought us a long way on the path to a new, fresh contract of hope in this country.

By her presence, Senator Anderson has reminded us that although we have come a long way, we still have a long way to go. She has reminded us that here in the Senate of Canada, we must never tire in the struggle for the truth; we must never tire in the struggle for the facts; we must never tire in our efforts to better the lives of the people of our provinces and our regions.

Senator Anderson has a wise and understanding heart. She deepened our thoughts. She broadened our minds. We thank her on this, the occasion of her retirement from this chamber. We thank her most especially for the very great pleasure of her company.

Hon. Orville H. Phillips: Honourable senators, I should like to join in the tribute to my fellow senator and a fellow Islander, Senator Anderson.

Perhaps it can be said that she arrived quietly, she served quietly and she left us quietly. I am sure that one person who will miss her greatly is the Liberal whip. In the previous Parliament, when our numbers were fairly equal and committee attendance was most important, I often noticed that when the Liberals were short a member on a committee, it was Senator Anderson who came in and filled the spot.

As Senator Graham has mentioned, Senator Anderson had a successful teaching career at Prince of Wales College and the University of Prince Edward Island. In addition, she was active in many organizations, such as the Canadian Federation of University Women and the Canadian Dietetic Association. As has already been mentioned, she received the Order of Canada. She also served for a period in the 1950s as a Wren officer in the reserve.

When I was talking to her brother this summer, he told me that she missed her friends in this chamber. I know that she will remember her friends here but that she will be very happy to be back on our beautiful island with an even greater number of friends.

Hon. Lorna Milne: Honourable senators, I would add a few words of tribute to Senator Doris Anderson, who was my seatmate in this place for most of our short time here together.

As Senator Phillips has said, she was a quiet woman. However, she had a very keen insight into the issues that came before us, and into the human condition. I must say I delighted in her sharp comments to me while sitting here.

She came with a background in nutrition, education and mental health. She had her Bachelor of Science from Acadia University and a Master of Science from Cornell University. Her career in the teaching profession has been outlined to honourable senators by Senator Graham.

She was widely published and respected in her chosen profession. Her work had a particular focus on children and on celiac disease. Her significant contribution to public health was recognized in 1982 when she received the Order of Canada.

Senator Anderson and I were appointed to the Senate in the same class, the Class of September 1995. We were one-half of that class. Although she had just two years in which to do it, Senator Anderson made her mark here in the Senate. During her tenure she served on no less than five standing committees at once. Let me enumerate them for you: They were the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, the Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry, the Standing Senate Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources, the Standing Senate Committee on Transport and Communications and the Standing Joint Committee of the Senate and the House of Commons for the Scrutiny of Regulations. She also chaired the Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry Subcommittee on the Boreal Forest, and served on the Special Committee of the Senate on the Cape Breton Development Corporation.

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Senator Anderson's quiet hard work and reliable service to the Senate and to Canada will be missed. I know that Prince Edward Island will be glad to have her back full time without the Senate to steal her away every week to Ottawa, but I will miss her.

Hon. Leonard J. Gustafson: Honourable senators, I have a few short words of appreciation for Senator Anderson's contribution, especially to the Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry. I was chairman of that committee. She was always there. Her in-depth research of whatever issue, whether in agriculture or forestry, was to be commended.

I take this occasion to say, "Thank you, Senator Anderson" for your contribution to that committee and to the Senate. I will miss you.

The Honourable Joseph P. Landry

Tributes on Retirement

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, in turning my mind to speaking of Senator Joe Landry, I cannot help but think of his roots in the dozens of small coastal communities that dot the great Atlantic seaboard and of the proud traditions and lifestyles which have been passed on from generation to generation.

In my part of the world, community is our greatest natural resource. It is in our communities where the values that anchor our country are renewed across the decades. The deep roots of community have been in many ways the origins of our wonderful country. It is in the small communities like Cap-Pelé, New Brunswick, where Senator Joe Landry came from, that lifestyles based on self-reliance and individual responsibility have been shaped and passed on over time.

Joe's story was all about determination and self-reliance and enterprise. He went from stevedore to fish plant owner. He did this on sheer tenacity and, of course, his own business acumen. Joe's story is also about individual responsibility to his many employees throughout Atlantic Canada and in the communities in which they lived, because he took great pride in putting money into equipment for his plants, believing that that kind of investment - not expenditures on personal luxuries, but on investments that he thought were for the good of his employees - was his contribution to the common good.

The proud father of seven children, Joe never forgot his roots.

[Translation]

Honourable senators, Joe Landry knew very well the importance and the meaning of life. He also knew the value of cooperation; no matter what the occasion was, he knew that the future of the nation revolved around the community to which we belong. He believed in family values, which are the key to our identity.

[English]

Woodrow Wilson once said that the man who is swimming against the stream knows the strength of it. Joe was exceedingly frank with us in this chamber on the subject of his own speech disability. You will recall that, a few months ago, he spoke of his life as an endless fight. We were all moved by his words. He spoke of children afflicted with speech problems and of the pain they suffer at the hands of their peers. He suffered it at the hands of his peers. He concluded his remarks with a passionate plea for government to become more involved in the treatment of speech impediments.

It was a moving and emotional address that all of us who were in this chamber at the time remember well. He told us that not all Canadian children have the resolve to get through life without a great deal more work in this area, and he said that, "Not many of the little children of today are as pig-headed as I was."

[Translation]

It has been said that the true value of a man is not measured by his easy triumphs, but by his courage in the face of challenge and adversity and his willingness to serve his fellow citizens.

[English]

Senator Landry, may all of us in this new session show the same courage and determination, and if I can use the words that you used, the same pig-headedness - the same pig-headed dedication to the interest of our communities, the same pig-headed determination to the interests of our regions - as you have shown in an all too brief tenure in this place.

We all wish you and Lucie a happy and healthy retirement.

Hon. Mabel M. DeWare: Honourable senators, I also rise to pay tribute to a former colleague from New Brunswick, the Honourable Joe Landry.

Over the span of his time here - I believe he was appointed in February of 1996, so it is about 16 months in this house - he and I became quite good friends during the many occasions we travelled from home to Ottawa together. During those times, Joe talked to me about his life and about his business, because I was interested and it was a New Brunswick business.

He talked about when he started as a stevedore in Halifax and how, in 1947, with a few friends, he decided to rebuild a fishing plant in Cap-Pelé where he was born in 1922. Over the span of 50 years, he built many other fishing plants in the Atlantic area. Then, because he was exporting around the world, he built a plastics plant. He said this was not all done with favourable acceptance by some of the people in the community. It seems as though he fought an uphill battle all the way, even though it meant recognition for Cap-Pelé and employment for a great number of people in that area. I believe he is now the number-one employer.

The other thing that he did during his time was help a new member in this house, Fernand Robichaud, see that the Prime Minister was elected in the Beauséjour riding. I listened to all that, and I knew about it, but I do not commend him for it. Anyway, I have to accept it.

He won an export award from the Province of New Brunswick in 1989, but that was not the "Senator Joe" that I know. I found him a humble, quiet, kind, genteel man who had a very regular attendance in this place. He was also here for votes, unfortunately. He was also very attendant to committee work. We did quite a bit of talking together, and often during receptions he would seek me out because he knew me and we were comfortable in each other's company.

He made one major speech here, his maiden speech, as Senator Graham has mentioned. Before going home on the last day after the speech, he told me that he had received a phone call asking him to go to the province of Alberta to deliver this speech and talk to the people out there about disabilities. He said it made him very proud to think that someone would ask him to come and tell about his life. It was a very personal speech he gave in this house, one that touched us that day.

Joe, I wish you and your family many more years of success and happiness.

[Translation]

Hon. Marcel Prud'homme: Honourable senators, I would be remiss if I did not say something to mark the departure of Senator Doris M. Anderson. Although I do not know her all that well, I gained an appreciation of her during the past two years she sat in the Senate. I often attended committee meetings and she was always there, something that is of great importance for the whips. I send her my greetings, with the hope that I shall get to visit her in Prince Edward Island.

I also wish to pay tribute to my old friend, Senator Landry. Mr. Landry was a man who kept to himself, a calm and quiet man. After the Senate adjourns in the evening, usually people go back to their offices alone, which is rather sad. I saw him often and came to know him. In a way he represents all of my past, my grandparents and parents. This was a solid man, a man like those who built their region, with a real attachment to the land.

I made friends with him immediately. Quickly, ours became a strong friendship. I have been a guest in his home and have learned much from him. Honourable senators, I wish you had all had the opportunity to get to know him as I did. He is a simple man, funny, capable, understanding, an example of determination. Anyone wanting to succeed in life could take a page from Senator Landry's book.

Despite the honours of the Senate, he always remained faithful to himself and faithful to his party. He always reproached me in that respect, and at each vote I suspected him of being the spokesperson for the "éminences grises" of the Senate. He always came to me saying "I hope you are going to vote with us." Occasionally, I think I did so just to please him.

I will not say any more. I will have the opportunity to visit him at home, but he will be missed here. Senator Landry is an example of determination and proof that, in this country, nothing is impossible. When people are that determined, there is no region that cannot be developed. I trust that he will continue, and I believe it is important for this message to reach him, so that he can set an example for young people, who are too often easily discouraged. I salute him and his family, and I look forward to visiting him soon.

Hon. Fernand Robichaud: Honourable senators, I should like to pay tribute to Senator Joseph Landry, "Joe" to everyone. As he said himself, there was no greater honour than to sit in this house and to be one of us.

In economic terms, all of southeastern New Brunswick is in his debt. A number of families depend on the jobs they have in his factories, primarily in Cap-Pelé. He also has interests on Prince Edward Island and in Cape Breton. Things were not always easy for him, and his success is due to his perseverance and the fact that he was a tireless worker. Joe also had the great gift of being able to see the positive side of things, both in business and in the people he met. My pleasure at Joe's return to private life is not because it opened the door to my entry into this honourable chamber, but rather because he will be able to continue to benefit the community by creating jobs, developing the local economy and supporting the fishing industry.

[English]

(1600)

Hon. M. Lorne Bonnell: Honourable senators, Senator Landry was my seatmate. He received most of his instructions from me. One of the things I said to Senator Joe was, "Since you are in the fish business, would it not be nice if all the senators - that is, the Liberals, Conservatives and Independents - could have a good feed of those maritime lobsters?" Joe thought it was a good idea. With the help and the graciousness of His Honour, we had a lovely lobster dinner in the Speaker's Chambers. Joe brought the lobster; Senator John Buchanan brought the wine; someone brought the black muscles; and someone else brought the smoked salmon. All the senators, be they from British Columbia, the Yukon, the Northwest Territories or Atlantic Canada, sat down together and ate a delicious maritime meal because of Joe Landry.

Senator MacDonald: Senator Graham did the fund raising!

Senator Bonnell: Senator Landry was a humble man. He made two speeches here. One speech, as you heard before, was on stammering - not stuttering. He was very proud of that speech. There were tears in his eyes the day that he gave it. It was given with emotion and straight from his heart. Another day he could not resist but stand up in this place and say how proud he was to see his friend Dr. Trenholme-Counsell be appointed as the Lieutenant-Governor of New Brunswick. On that occasion he stood again and gave another speech.

Joe is not a man who could get up and make a speech. Joe is a working man. He is a man who helped elect prime ministers and members of Parliament. He helped to do lots of things but, most important, he liked to work with his own people in Cap-Pelé and the Shediac area of New Brunswick. If any senator from either side - that is, Independents, Liberals, Conservatives, or even a Reformer if there was such a thing here - were to visit him, Joe would be more than pleased to have them call on him at Cap-Pelé and to have a lobster or fish dinner with them if the opportunity were to arise.

I shall make it a point each year, while I can still drive a car, to drive across that beautiful bridge in Prince Edward Island to see my old seatmate, Senator Landry, to remind him that the feed of New Brunswick lobsters is available to a Prince Edward Islander.

Senator Buchanan: I shall go with you!

Senator Bonnell: If Senator Buchanan wants to go with me, he will have to bring the wine again.

Senator Landry was very interested in Prince Edward Island, especially Rustico Island, where the breakwaters have broken down because of the change of the tides when they closed off Rustico Island. Joe worked on that project for two years to try to get that breakwater diverted back to Rustico Island rather than toward the peninsula. If the truth were to be known, he is still working at it to this day. He has not succeeded yet. He had hoped that if they changed the government in Prince Edward Island, they might decide to work at it a little more. He has not been successful but he will not stop trying until he dies.

I should like to extend to his good wife and family my best regards and sincere hope that he finds enjoyment and happiness in his retirement. Also, I should like to tell him that I shall be there, Joe, looking for that lobster dinner the first time I am in Cap-Pelé.

Hon. John G. Bryden: Honourable senators, Senator Landry lives just up the coast, about a 25-minute drive from my farm, which has been my home, basically, since 1946. I have come to know Joe in the latter years since I have been back there. However, I wanted to say something to the honourable senators in this chamber who welcomed Joe Landry, and with whom Joe Landry became friends. I know that Joe thoroughly appreciated the kindness, the courtesy and the genuine feeling that many senators developed for him in the short period of time he was here.

People do not realize the inventiveness that Joe Landry brought to his industry. He developed the CO2 freezing for lobster tails that are now exported around the world. I will not tell you how that is done, but it keeps the lobster tails very fresh. As soon as you thaw them out, you would think they had just come out of the water.

When we talk about fish plants and the fish packing industry, we do not realize how important such things are to a region such as Atlantic Canada. In the last annual issue of a prominent Atlantic business magazine, they list - and they do it every year, I believe - the 101 top contributors to the economy of Atlantic Canada. It is much like Atlantic Canada's Fortune 500. In that list, which starts with the Irvings and the McCains, ranked number 41 is Cape Bald Packers, which was started and is owned and operated by Joe Landry and his family.

Just last winter when he was getting ready to retire, Joe was in the Caribbean examining the fishery there to see if some of the techniques that we use in the Northumberland Strait and in Atlantic Canada could be of benefit to the fishery and the people of the Caribbean. He also spotted an untapped stock that he thought he could exploit.

Joe and I travelled home together from the opening of Parliament last week, after the Speech from the Throne. It was interesting to hear Senator Bonnell say that Joe had an interest in Rustico Island in Prince Edward Island. Lo and behold, who was at the airport in Ottawa on her way to Montreal when we were getting ready to leave but the Honourable Sheila Copps, who is in charge of parks and heritage. From the time that Sheila Copps made the mistake of coming over to say "Hello" until she left the airport in Montreal, Joe Landry spent every second in talking to her about why Parks Canada should fix Rustico Island. When he left me, he said, "I think we have the Rustico Island thing fixed."

Honourable senators, Senator Joe Landry was so proud to be here last week to attend the Speech from the Throne. He told me, "I bought this tuxedo because it costs so much to rent them. It only costs $160 to buy one." He was very proud to be with us.

When Joe got off the plane in Moncton, he was paged. One of his fish trucks was on fire in Sussex. His son was there. When I caught up with them, Joe and his son were having an argument as to whether or not Joe should go and deal with the truck and let his son go back to his family, who were having a birthday party. As far as I know, Joe went with the half-ton to Sussex to see what was going on with the fish truck.

That is the sort of person and the sort of life this wonderful man has had. I have been very happy to call him a friend. If Joe were here, he would want to tell you how much he appreciates the friends he had the opportunity to make in his short period of time here in this gracious chamber.

The Senate

Tributes on Appointment and Retirement of Officers

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators before we welcome the new senators -

[Translation]

I should like to welcome back Senator Molgat, who is so competent as Speaker it seems he was born to occupy this chair.

[English]

Senator Molgat has an unparalleled knowledge of this chamber and its rules. He has served with grace and dignity during even the most heated debate. Senator Molgat has served his province and this country for many years as diplomat, soldier and statesman. He is a man who understands more than most that this proud and historic chamber is the conscience of Parliament, and that its role, though constantly evolving and changing, is rooted deeply in the determination of the Fathers of Confederation to forge a new nation.

[Translation]

We shall continue to learn from him as the session unfolds.

[English]

Welcome back, Your Honour. We are very happy that you are with us again.

Honourable senators, many years ago, Senator John Connolly described the Canadian Senate as the custodian of our basic freedoms. My former seatmate, the former Leader of the Government, Senator Fairbairn, exemplifies that kind of Senate. Senator Fairbairn led the government side in very difficult circumstances. Speaking on behalf of our entire caucus, we are proud to have served under her leadership. Though she has stepped down from her former position, Senator Fairbairn has not backed away from her duties or from her dedication to service. As we all know, she was asked by the Minister of Human Resources Development to be his advisor on literacy. During this past week she has, in fact, represented Minister Pettigrew in both Toronto and South Korea. I only hope she will give as generously of her time when I seek her advice and her counsel as she has given, and continues to give, in the service of our country.

There has been quite a change in the front row on the government bench, and I welcome with great pride the new Deputy Leader of the Government, Senator Sharon Carstairs. I will speak later of the spirit of the valiant five of 1929 and their tenacious commitment to principle; however, honourable senators, their spirit lives on in the new deputy leader, a person who has never been shy in getting the job done or, as those who have served with her on the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs will attest, in fighting the good fight.

I might add that Senator Carstairs is gifted with a special human touch, as she has shown us over the last session; never hesitating to bring her own personal experiences front and centre to debates in this chamber.

Honourable senators, my colleague and my friend Senator Jacques Hébert will once again carry out the duties of the government whip, and we will continue to know him and respect him as every man or woman should fear the whip - or to put it in other terms, as any man or woman should fear the author of over two dozen books.

[Translation]

We can count on Senator Hébert to continue to honour this house with his elegance and his unique touch.

[English]

I should like to welcome back our colleague Senator Lynch-Staunton, who returns in his role as Leader of the Opposition.

Hon. Senators: Hear, hear!

Senator Graham: His very strong intellect and forceful debating style have always reflected a deep and vigorous commitment to the well-being of all Canadians. He is flanked and supported, of course, by the scholarly, reflective presence of Senator Noël A. Kinsella, fast becoming a master of parliamentary procedure, as well as by the Opposition Whip, Senator Mabel DeWare, a former champion curler and provincial cabinet minister.

With them we see an opposition team with the experience to understand the courage and devotion with which the Senate of Canada must undertake its responsibilities.

Finally, in welcoming everyone from our respective caucuses back to a new Parliament, although they are not in the chamber at the present time, I also welcome those who have chosen to serve as independents: Senators Lawson, Pitfield and Prud'homme.

[Translation]

As caucus members, they look at the operation of this house from a unique standpoint, which I hope they will have an opportunity to share in the months and years to come.

[English]

New Senators

Congratulations on Appointment

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government): Honourable senators, someone once said that the secret of a winning basketball, baseball, football or hockey coach is a combination of the will to win and the overwhelming belief that the game is important. I believe that that winning combination is as much the key to success in political life as it is on the playing field. Senator Fernand Robichaud exemplifies that kind of winning combination. In fact, one of my first memories of our new colleague Senator Fernand Robichaud goes back to playing hockey in the freezing weather on Dow's Lake during Winterlude.

Incidentally, I first met Sister Peggy Butts on the frozen bogs of Bridgeport, but more about that later.

The meeting with Fernand took place in 1985. The winter after he was elected a member of Parliament he was stalwart on the parliamentary hockey team. Since that time, through good times and bad, Fernand has never backed down from a challenge, whether it was as Secretary of State for Parliamentary Affairs, as a member of Parliament representing his constituents or as a Secretary of State for Agriculture and Agri-food or Fisheries and Oceans.

Aldous Huxley once wrote that experience is not what happens to a man, it is what a man does with what happens to him that is important. Senator Robichaud has enjoyed great success throughout his life in teaching, community development and business. He has understood that success comes from that ability to grasp the other person's point of view, to see things from his or her angle rather than just your own.

[Translation]

Your Acadian background and your sense of community, two major assets, Fernand, can only benefit the Senate. We will benefit on a daily basis from this cultural and linguistic understanding so dear to your province of New Brunswick. You will also bring a breath of fresh air from that province, which is a model for the whole country to follow.

[English]

Honourable senators, as well, Senator Robichaud brings common sense and a real understanding of partnership and the ability to assume leadership without being asked. He brings that ability and that understanding to the Senate, the workshop of Parliament, a workshop that serves Canadians. I know better than most that when the going gets tough, Senator Robichaud indeed will get going.

Honourable senators, Catherine Callbeck needs very little introduction. Her record stands on its own. Much of that record has been based on honourable service to the people of her community and to the people of her province. She has run a successful family business and has served as an MLA, as a federal member of Parliament, as a provincial cabinet minister and, most recently, as premier of her beautiful island province.

Through her personal example, Senator Callbeck has elevated the tone of public life and private life. Indeed, for Catherine, public and personal honour were and are identical.

Senator Callbeck, you bring honour to this chamber. I speak of honour in the sense of how Walter Lippmann once spoke of honour. He said that it is an ideal of conduct that is held to by extraordinary people who may find it unprofitable to do so, who may find it inconvenient to do so, who may in many cases, especially in political life, find it even dangerous to do so. Whether as business woman, private citizen or premier, you have been a person to exemplify the pursuit of the ideal of honour. You engineered major changes during your term as premier and undertook the kind of fundamental reforms that took rare courage to implement.

The bridge to the mainland, which you backed with such tenacity, created hundreds of jobs for Islanders. You attacked the deficit; never popular, sometimes dangerous, and tabled two consecutive budget surpluses. You brought Prince Edward Island to the point where it has the lowest debt per capita in the country. That took guts and perseverance. Your actions reformed the shape of public life in Prince Edward Island. The history books will record your spirit and your drive, the kind of spirit shown by the women who fought the Persons case all the way up to the Privy Council in London and brought women access to this chamber in 1929.

As we open this session and welcome Canada's first elected woman premier among us, I want to pay a special tribute to the "Valiant 5" of 1929. Nellie McClung was one of them. She once exhorted her sisters to: "Never retract, never explain, never apologize - get the thing done and let them howl." For Catherine Callbeck, who never hesitated to do the right thing in terms of regional development for her gentle island province, who never hesitated to pull out all the stops to create employment in Prince Edward Island, who never hesitated to get the job done, even though sometimes it was dangerous and sometimes it was unpopular, the spirit of the "Valiant 5" has a special significance.

Senator Callbeck, like the "Valiant 5," we know you will never retract in pursuit of the ideal of honour. We know you will never apologize in the pursuit of the ideal of honour. We know you will get the job done and let them howl. We are enriched by your presence in this place.

Hon. Senators: Hear, hear!

Senator Graham: Honourable senators, when George Bernard Shaw wrote about indifference over a century ago, he was living at a time when extended families were the rule and when people still cared for the elderly at home. Indifference is a timeless thing, and when Shaw pointed out that the worst sin toward our fellow creatures is not to hate them but to be indifferent to them, stating that indifference is the essence of inhumanity, he touched a timeless chord which, in today's world, is magnified many times over.

I think that of the many problems our seniors have in this country the first and possibly the worst is loneliness. In her long years of service to seniors, both in the Italian community of Montreal and, as her experience increased, with immigrant seniors reflecting the rich multicultural face of our country, Senator Marisa Ferretti Barth has worked overtime to deal with humanity's worst sin, the sin of indifference.

In a society in which the extended family household has become a thing of the long distant past, many older Canadians live alone, separated from loved ones by distance and the demands of the new economy. In our society seniors must have the chance to hold on to the feeling of security that family represents. They need windows to warmth and compassion, to laughter and nourishment. In our time, there is no greater need than for people who will keep those windows open. Those people who keep vital contacts open become essential to life itself.

(1630)

The greatly loved Mother Teresa once said, "Loneliness and the feeling of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty." She was right, and the individuals who serve to alleviate that terrible poverty, that feeling of being unwanted which so drastically afflicts all too many of our seniors, are those people who in many ways perform the greatest good of all.

Senator Marisa Ferretti Barth has spent many years fighting that terrible poverty. She has helped in relieving the fear and want of the many seniors who live alone. She has been there to help seniors organize themselves to look after one another and to enjoy a more socially active life. In many cases, she helped fill endless days with meaning and new purpose. She has built bridges of empowerment on many levels to help immigrant seniors integrate into Quebec life and society.

[Translation]

Honourable senators, at this time in our history, it is a privilege to have among us Marisa Ferretti Barth, a woman with such a big heart and such vast experience. We will learn a lot from you and your advice will be most valuable to us.

[English]

Finally, honourable senators, the story of Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, where Sister Mary Alice (Peggy) Butts was raised, is a story about coal and coalminers. It is a story about the men of the deeps whose lives were dangerous and insecure; miners and their families who, in spite of all the hardships and insecurities, drew strength from a resource that was in some ways even stronger than the black gold itself. That was Cape Breton's powerful community spirit and its unwritten bonds of trust and solidarity.

In Glace Bay, the culture of the coal industry was in many ways like that of the military. Each man had a buddy and each would go over the top for the other unconditionally. That is why, for so many who were raised there, Alasdair McGillivray's Song of the Mira is so greatly loved. My colleague and friend Senator Buchanan -

An Hon. Senator: Do not encourage him.

Senator Graham: I am told not to encourage him to sing it at this time, but I am sure he will later. The line I remember best from that song is:

If you come back broken, they'll see that you mend.

If any one Cape Bretoner's life has been a living testament to the humanity and compassion of this lovely ballad, it has been that of Sister Peggy Butts. When I first met her on the frozen bogs of Bridgeport, she was one of the gang and a hockey lover; a lifelong, unconditional, unrepentant supporter of the Montreal Canadiens.

Some Hon. Senators: Hear, hear!

Senator Graham: I do not know if that will help her get tickets to the Senators' games.

When I left Sister Peggy Butts on the evening before she was sworn into this chamber, I asked, "Are you all right, Sister Peggy?"

She said, "Yes, of course, I am."

I said, "Have you anything to read?"

She said, "Yes," and she pulled out of her briefcase the 1997-98 National Hockey League Yearbook. She wanted to know when the Habs were coming to town.

She is first and foremost a coalminer's kid. To Peggy, life is a silent, simple pledge to your community and your people. Life means going over the top unconditionally for the other. That was the meaning of life for the coalminer's kid then, and I would submit, honourable senators, that it is the meaning and purpose for the coalminer's kid who is seated with us today - now Senator Mary Alice "Peggy" Butts - who now moves the hearts and minds of Canadians and, from the mail the Prime Minister has received from around the world, also moves the hearts and minds of people across the planet.

Sister Peggy is a proponent of the ideals of justice, of community service, of empowerment for the poor and the disadvantaged among us. In all this, she has cast out ripples of hope across the decades, ripples of hope that are the true mark of a leader, a scholar, an educator, a social activist who has always understood that the leader is one who, as someone once said, walks behind and with the people, who is the servant of the people, and who walks with humility behind and with the people.

Sister Peggy, in your person, you bear the mind of the scholar, the heart of the lion and the soul of the coalminer's kid. From press reports, the Bishop of Antigonish, Colin Campbell, upon learning of your appointment, said that we should all get ready for the fireworks. You are welcome. We are ready.

Hon. John Lynch-Staunton (Leader of the Opposition): Honourable senators, Senator Graham cast a very wide net of generous remarks, which extended even to this side. I am still somewhat overwhelmed by this unexpected tribute. Rather than impulsively react to it in a way that would not meet his kind remarks, I shall wait until next week, when I have an opportunity to speak in reply to the Speech from the Throne, and make the appropriate reaction then.

Meanwhile, I am very happy to join with the Leader of the Government in welcoming our four new colleagues who bring to this house a variety of talent and experience, which has been so well described by Senator Graham, talent and experience which can only benefit us all, whatever our political leanings.

Senator Fernand Robichaud's many years in the House of Commons as a speaker on both sides will serve him and us well here, as will Senator Callbeck's experience as a member of both her province's legislative assembly and of the House of Commons. She, by the way, joins two other former premiers from the Atlantic provinces. We can no doubt expect that the Atlantic voice in the Senate will be more prominent than ever, impossible as that may seem, particularly after today.

[Translation]

Honourable senators, fortunately the Senate is not restricted to politicians. Its members include a good number of individuals who distinguish themselves by their numerous activities in the private sector for the benefit of their fellow citizens. Senator Barth is one such individual and we will undoubtedly be enriched by her knowledge and broad experience with the elderly, a group of citizens that will quite rightly be one of the major concerns of this new Parliament.

[English]

Not much has been written and said about Senator Butts being the first member of a religious order to be summoned to this place. She certainly brings impeccable credentials, as far as I am concerned, being a member of the Congrégation de Notre-Dame, which was founded in the mid-seventeenth century in Montreal by Marguerite Bourgeoys, who was canonized in 1982.

Her devotion, as Senator Graham has said, also extends to her ardent support of the Montreal Canadiens, which is certainly a great demonstration of faith to many of us these days. After listening to Senator Graham, I have no doubt that she will be the best argument yet for removal of the mandatory retirement age for senators.

There has been much discussion in these early days of autumn about vows of parliamentary poverty and selfless service. The discourse has been good for us. The argument goes like this: Senators would be happy to vow poverty if they had enough remuneration to afford it.

After six years of a government freeze and not so much as a whiff of an adjustment, the honourable occupants of seats on both sides of the crimson chamber acknowledge that it would be easier to downscale themselves if they were seen to be upscaled in parliamentary compensation.

Over the years, caution has led me not only to the great Book but to the Bard of Avon for advice on all matters of ethical relevance.

(1640)

Shakespeare gives some of his sharpest lines to the separation of church and state by summoning Cardinal Wolsey to speak as follows:

Had I but serv'd my God with half the zeal
I serv'd my king, he would not in mine age
Have left me naked to mine enemies.

For the benefit of our newest colleagues, let me define some key words from the Senate dictionary. "God" is immutable; he resides in heaven and lives up to the address. "King" is a Liberal whip; he actually believes that voting for government bills is some kind of virtue. "Nakedness" in this place is something that your enemies might abuse, and turn your friends very quickly into former friends. To borrow from Mrs. Patrick Campbell, "My dear, I don't care what they do, as long as they don't do it in the street and frighten the horses."

Allow me to ease our colleagues' concerns about their ethical qualifications for the upper chamber of Parliament. You have arrived with a guardian, a woman who has sung and decapitated more temptation than most of us will face in our lifetimes. Senator Butts, I am sure, will be there to hold your hands, and ours, whenever evil beckons, even the devil disguised as a Conservative.

My best wishes to you all as you assume your new responsibilities and, to borrow from a World War II favourite, Senator Graham, "Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition."

Hon. Senators: Hear, hear!

Hon. John Buchanan: Honourable senators, I also want to congratulate the four new members of this chamber. Specifically, I want to say a few words about Sister Mary Alice Peggy Butts. We talked about John M. Macdonald earlier. Senator Butts is, has been and will continue to be a champion of Cape Breton and Cape Bretoners, friend of the underprivileged, friend of the poor and friend of the unemployed.

Honourable senators probably would not have seen television on Friday last when a young man who had been unemployed for many years in Cape Breton was interviewed. He has a job now, and he said, "I know that Sister Peggy is lurking in the background and has looked after me." He would be one of many Cape Bretoners who will look back and know of the good that she did for them and the members of their families. Over the years, her priorities have been her church, her family and her people. She is a real people's person.

I was interviewed on television last Friday and asked various questions about Sister Peggy. I said that she was probably known by everyone in Cape Breton; that her good works were known by everyone in Cape Breton and that she is a very wonderful person. I was then asked, "What do you think of her being appointed by a Liberal Prime Minister?" I replied, "It doesn't matter to me who appointed her, as long as she was appointed because she will be one of the most positive appointments ever made to the Senate of Canada."

I was happy that night as I watched the news. I did not think they would play the interview, but they did. I was so happy that they did because I really believe that she will make a very positive contribution to this Senate.

During my 13 years as the premier of Nova Scotia, I heard much about Sister Peggy Butts and her good works, not only all over Cape Breton but also throughout all of eastern Nova Scotia. Although she was always kind of a low-profile person, everyone knew about Sister Peggy Butts and her efforts on behalf of those in that part of Nova Scotia who needed help; something she unselfishly gave at all times.

My sister Dorothy wanted me to congratulate Senator Butts. Dorothy met Sister Peggy Butts through a mutual friend of theirs, Sister Harkwell, at the University College of Cape Breton where my sister, along with Sister Harkwell, taught a course in tourism and hospitality. Sister Peggy may not remember, but she also taught my niece at the UCCB. That particular niece told me that she cannot remember any student at the UCCB who did not think Sister Butts one of the most wonderful persons into whom the good Lord had ever put breath. They loved her. Everyone I have talked to is happy with the appointment of Senator Butts to the Senate of Canada.

In 1973, when I was Leader of the Opposition, we had quite a day in the Legislative Assembly of Nova Scotia when a certain member from Cape Breton Centre decided that he had had enough with a certain other member, and they proceeded to have an altercation in the legislature. The media of the day announced that this was a first for Nova Scotia. I got home that night and I had a call from a neighbour of mine, originally from Cape Breton, who just lived up the street from me. Her name is Ann-Marie Smith. Ann-Marie said, "My father wants you to come up. He has something to show you." Her father, who was also a Cape Bretoner, of course, was Dick Butts.

I went up to the house where dear old Dick Butts was sitting in his little den up at Ann-Marie's house. He had spread before him several newspapers which showed that the altercation of 1973 was not the first in our legislature. The first had been in about 1936. It involved a Liberal cabinet minister and one R.H. Butts, MLA for Cape Breton North. Dick Butts said, "That's not the first. They are both Cape Bretoners. But my father was the first to have an altercation in the legislature."

The reason I tell honourable senators this story is that Dick Butts was a cousin of Sister Peggy Butts; and R.H. Butts, Tory MLA for Cape Breton North, and Sister Peggy's father were brothers. All of the Butts at that time were Tories. Ann-Marie told me that that was not correct. Like my family, they were on both sides of the political fence.

Senator Butts was probably very neutral through all those years, which is why she is so wonderful. That is because one can be in this spot and not be the kind of partisan person that many of us find ourselves becoming elsewhere.

I just spoke to Senator Butt's cousin, Ann-Marie, to get my facts right. She is also my neighbour. She was president of Saint Michael's CWL. She was on the Diocesan Centre CWL, as well as on the provincial executive of the CWL. Her husband, Donald Smith, was the president of my constituency for many years. Honourable senators can see that we have a very close relationship in Nova Scotia, and in particular in Cape Breton, as Senator Graham said.

I extend my welcome to Senator Butts. I know that the Senate will be a much better place because she is here.

Hon. Finlay MacDonald: Honourable senators, I shall be brief. Senator Lynch-Staunton's remarks reminded me of something. I have been trying to remember from whence it came. I think it originated in Ambrose Bierce's book The Devil's Dictionary, which many of you will know. I direct this comment to my friend Senator Butts.

That volume states that a member of the House of Commons is a member of the lower house in this world, with no hope of perceptible improvement in the next. Senator Butts is now a member of the upper house. We can only pray that she carries the rest of us along with her.

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Hon. Richard J. Doyle: Honourable senators, after more than 12 years in this place, I am still having difficulty with party affiliation. Do not blame it on Senator Finlay MacDonald - or even his uncle John M. Macdonald. It is not their fault that I have spoken against my own party. Do not thank Senators Al Graham or Joan Neiman for my undisguised enthusiasm for some of the nonsense concocted by the Grits. Perhaps there is some contamination in the walls of the room where cabinet meets that brings forth spurts of legislative pap no matter who is meeting there.

It is easier to define my crush on Joyce Fairbairn. Before going to the Senate, she was a first-rate journalist. Before going to the summit, she was regarded as the most extraordinary ordinary senator on the Hill, and who was I to argue after sharing many duties with the lady? Brisk and quick, informed and caring - all good words to describe her before and, of course, after her elevation to the leadership. I never mastered the "Question Period" art of shouting at her. Thanks to my schooling in partisanship, I never really believed that she was responsible for the government's failure to answer some of our most cunning inquiries. I do not think that she led or contributed to the criminal pursuit of Brian Mulroney or - no matter what is said - that she personally plotted to deny the would-be builders of Pearson airport their day in court. Truth be told, I do not believe she needs the likes of me to defend her record as a proud and staunch advocate of the Senate and its vitality as a parliamentary force.

One thing that I hope will spring from her vacating the leader's perch is that she will be able to find - wherever she is - even more time for the cause that she has served for all my years in this chamber - the drive to end illiteracy as the great shame of Canada.

That is not a bad aim for any member of Parliament who ponders the relevance of the work we do here.

[Translation]

Hon. Marcel Prud'homme: It is with pleasure that I rise as an independent to welcome the four new senators.

The amazing coincidence is that I had the honour to sit with two of the four senators, Senators Robichaud and Callbeck. I know Senator Marisa Ferretti Barth very well. She lived in my riding when I was an MP.

[English]

Senator Ferretti Barth was from the district that I represented in the House of Commons for many years. Everything that has been said about her is totally true. She will be an unbelievable and welcome addition to the Senate. The whip and the government of the day will find her talents very welcome on certain committees, particularly those pertaining to helping our senior citizens and other such causes.

I had the honour of attending a magnificent ceremony in Mount Allison when Senator Callbeck became a doctor honoris causa. I went there in the company of the ambassador of Kuwait. I was very touched by the ceremony that took place there. Mount Allison has tradition. It is a university that is not afraid of its connection to religion. I am very attached to religion. The ceremony that took place touched every guest that was present at Mount Allison. I also had the honour of sitting with Senator Callbeck when she was a member of the House of Commons. We will pursue our good friendship. I am delighted about her appointment. Senator Bonnell can bear witness that I kept telling him, "I hope it will be Madam Callbeck." Last summer when we were in Carroll he said, "I can tell you ahead of time that it will be Madam Callbeck, or no one will be appointed to the Senate."

I rejoice very much in seeing you here, Senator Callbeck.

I also sat with Senator Robichaud. He will bring us his expertise.

I have not had the honour of knowing you, Senator Butts, but we all know that we are experiencing a crisis in this country. I call it the "de-Christianization of our institutions." I will not beat around the bush on this issue. Today we take religion out of the schools in Newfoundland; tomorrow we will be asked to take religion out of the schools in Quebec. I will oppose it. I will ask: Why? After tomorrow, it will be Ontario. I rejoice that religion is coming back to the Senate at a time when politicians and others who have a short view of the meaning of religion are taking religion out of our institutions and accepting their "de-Christianization," including the celebration of Christmas in many provinces. I look forward to working with you, Sister. I hope that, in the many endeavours that you undertake, you will invite me to Nova Scotia. I would be more than honoured to participate and to say "Yes, Sister, I am present and I am happy to answer your call."

Hon. M. Lorne Bonnell: Honourable senators, I rise to say a few words about my seatmate, Senator Callbeck. Senator Callbeck became a member of the legislature after I left that place 27 years ago; she has now become a member of the Senate before I leave this place three months hence.

She is a very capable person. I went to the nomination meeting when she was nominated to run for the member of Parliament for Malpeque. I was not a mover or a seconder, but I stood up and said, "I came to this meeting to support Catherine Callbeck" -

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Senator Forrestall: It is a Liberal riding.

Senator Bonnell: - "to support Catherine Callbeck, not because she is a woman but because she is capable, she is intelligent, and she is sympathetic to the needs of the people." With that, she went forward in the House of Commons, and then on to become the first female premier ever elected in Canada. Many have been appointed, many have been selected, but only Senator Callbeck was ever elected as a woman premier of a province in this country.

At that particular time in the history of Prince Edward Island, the Leader of the Opposition was a woman; the Lieutenant-Governor of the province was a woman; the Speaker of the House was a woman; the Deputy Speaker of the House was a woman. Women took charge in Prince Edward Island in every portfolio and every situation of any consequence.

Premier Callbeck, now Senator Callbeck, was the leadership behind it all. To her, I extend a welcome to the Senate, representing Prince Edward Island. When I leave here, I will go knowing that Senator Callbeck is doing a good job, as she has in every job she has undertaken so far.

As for the other three senators, except for Senator Robichaud, I did not know any of them prior to their arrival here in the Senate. Senator Robichaud I knew as a member of the House of Commons. Joe Landry used to tell me what a great fellow he was, and how he helped by resigning his seat and letting the Prime Minister run there and be elected when he could not find a seat in Quebec, and that Mr. Chrétien was re-elected as Prime Minister of Canada due to Senator Robichaud's generosity in resigning his seat.

As for Senator Butts, after hearing about her from so many people, I think perhaps we should have Mother Butts taking over now that Mother Teresa has died, because she seems to have the same type of history in what she has done with the poor, the underprivileged and the unemployed, and all the other people of Cape Breton. I think, rather than call her "Senator Butts" or "Sister Butts," I will call her "Mother Butts."

I welcome all the new senators to the Senate. A big job lies ahead of them in keeping up the image of this place, because the press likes to put us down sometimes, and they like to find the weaknesses, if there are any. We must work hard to show that this place is worthwhile keeping in the Parliament of Canada, and that we do have a function to perform. We have been doing it better and better every year since I came here, and I know it will be still better after I am gone.

I welcome each new senator to this great chamber, this hall of honour, this closest thing to heaven without dying.


ROUTINE PROCEEDINGS

Information Commissioner

Annual Report Tabled

The Hon. the Speaker: Honourable senators, I have the honour to table the Annual Report of the Information Commissioner for the period ended March 31, 1997.

Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act

Bill to Amend-First Reading

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government), presented Bill S-2, to amend the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act and to make a consequential amendment to another Act.

Bill read first time.

The Hon. the Speaker: Honourable senators, when shall this bill be read the second time?

On motion of Senator Graham, bill placed on the Orders of the Day for second reading on Thursday next, October 2, 1997.

Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985 
Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions Act

Bill to Amend-First Reading

Hon. B. Alasdair Graham (Leader of the Government) presented Bill S-3, to amend the Pension Benefits Standards Act, 1985, and the Office of Superintendent of Financial Institutions Act.

Bill read first time.

The Hon. the Speaker: Honourable senators, when shall this bill be read the second time?

On motion of Senator Graham, bill placed on the Orders of the Day for seconding reading on Thursday, October 2, 1997.

National Defence

Notice of Motion to Establish Special Committee to Examine Activities of Canadian Airborne Regiment in Somalia

Hon. John Lynch-Staunton (Leader of the Opposition): I give notice that on Thursday, October 2, 1997, I shall move:

That a special committee of the Senate be appointed to examine and report on the manner in which the chain of command of the Canadian Forces, both in-theatre and at National Defence Headquarters, responded to the operational, disciplinary, decision-making and administrative problems encountered during the Somalia deployment to the extent that these matters have not been examined by the Commission of Inquiry into the Deployment of Canadian Forces to Somalia.

That the Committee in examining these issues may call witnesses from whom it believes it may obtain evidence relevant to these matters including but not limited to:

1. former Ministers of National Defence;

2. the then Deputy Minister of National Defence;

3. the then Acting Chief of Staff of the Minister of National Defence;

4. the then special advisor to the Minister of National Defence (M. Campbell);

5. the then special advisor to the Minister of National Defence (J. Dixon);

6. the persons occupying the position of Judge Advocate General during the relevant period;

7. the then Deputy Judge Advocate General (litigation); and

8. the then Chief of Defence Staff and Deputy Chief of Defence Staff.

That seven Senators, nominated by the Committee of Selection, act as members of the Special Committee, and that three members constitute a quorum;

That the Committee have power to send for persons, papers and records, to examine witnesses under oath, to report from time to time and to print such papers and evidence from day to day as may be ordered by the Committee;

That the Committee have power to authorize television and radio broadcasting, as it deems appropriate, of any or all of its proceedings;

That the Committee have the power to engage the services of such counsel and other professional, technical, clerical and other personnel as may be necessary for the purposes of its examination;

That the political parties represented on the Special Committee be granted allocations for expert assistance with the work of the Committee;

That the Committee be empowered to adjourn from place to place within and outside Canada;

That the Committee have power to sit during sittings and adjournments of the Senate;

That the Committee submit its report not later than one year from the date of it being constituted, provided that, if the Senate is not sitting, the report will be deemed submitted on the day such report is deposited with the Clerk of the Senate; and

That the Special Committee include in its report, its findings and recommendations regarding the structure, functioning and operational effectiveness of National Defence Headquarters, the relationship between the military and civilian components of NDHQ, and the relationship among the Deputy Minister of Defence, the Chief of Defence Staff and the Minister of National Defence.

The Senate adjourned until tomorrow at 2 p.m.