Private Deputies' Business. - Unemployment Problem.

Debate resumed on the following motion:—
That in view of continued widespread unemployment the Dáil instructs the Executive Council to make available forthwith sufficient money to permit of the carrying out of large scale schemes of public works, so as to relieve the distress caused by unemployment—(Deputies Norton and Davin.)

It is not my intention to take up the time of the Dáil to any extent, on this motion. I have already spoken upon it and for a somewhat longer time than I originally intended. In fact I would not have intervened at all, at the present stage, if it had not been for the contention made by Deputy Mulcahy that the solution of the problem of unemployment was something which could be easily achieved by the termination, on whatever terms might be secured, of the financial dispute with Great Britain. In fact, it was clear from Deputy Mulcahy's speech, made on behalf of his Party, that the only idea in the minds of that Party for dealing with the problem of unemployment is to secure an adjustment in the financial relations with Great Britain, and then trust to luck. I intervened to point to the obvious fact that unemployment existed here, and constituted a very grave problem here, before the financial dispute with Great Britain began, and I invited Deputy Mulcahy or some other member of his Party to explain to us, in detail, in what manner the termination of the dispute would secure the removal of the problem of unemployment and what persons now unemployed would secure work in consequence of the termination of the dispute. In case Deputies would have forgotten the conditions which existed in the Saorstát before the present Government came into office and before the financial dispute with Britain opened, it is desirable to advise them to read some of the speeches which they themselves made concerning the conditions which existed at that time.

On the occasion of the earlier debate upon this question I noted that the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Deputy Alfred Byrne, was about to intervene. I advised him it was unnecessary to do so because, presumably, he would have nothing more to say on this occasion than on previous occasions when unemployment was discussed here and that I would save him the trouble by quoting from some of his earlier speeches. I am doing that, not for the purpose of facilitating Deputy Byrne, but for the purpose of impressing upon Deputies opposite who support Deputy Mulcahy in his original contention that unemployment is due to the financial dispute with Britain, what their own Party considered to be the position many years before that dispute between the Saorstát and Great Britain arose. On the 10th March, 1926, there was a debate here on unemployment in which Deputy Mulcahy as Minister for Local Government suggested that the unemployed workers in Dublin should not get relief in cash, but only in kind because if they got relief in cash they would spend it in publichouses instead of on their wives and children.

Would the Minister mind quoting my words?

The Deputy will find them in the Official Debates of 10th March, 1926.

The Minister has made a statement which he cannot substantiate as to certain words I used.

The Deputy can look them up in the Official Debates.

I repeat the Minister has made a statement which he cannot substantiate.

Does the Deputy suggest he did not make the statement?

I say the Minister has made a statement that he cannot substantiate. He says that I stated that if the unemployed were paid home assistance money they would spend it on drink in the publichouses. Will the Minister substantiate that?

I have sent for the volume. Meantime I must be allowed to proceed. Deputy Byrne, who was under the impression that the suggestion was made, was very indignant and spoke strongly about it. Speaking about unemployment he said:—

"I was really astonished at the brusque, shall I say, the almost savage way in which the Minister endeavoured to brush aside the case made by Deputy Johnson."

Would the Minister say what he is quoting from?

I am quoting from the the Parliamentary Debates, 10th March, 1926, Vol. 14, Cols. 1357-8.

When I was Minister for Local Government? Will the Minister substantiate that?

Deputy Byrne went on to say:—

"When Deputy Johnson brought this matter forward on a former occasion I stated that the Government were only dealing with the fringe of the question, so far as Dublin unemployed were concerned. We have to-day many decent workmen who earned good wages in the past walking the streets of Dublin unemployed."

That was a statement made by Deputy Byrne about the unemployed in Dublin in 1926. In 1927, Vol. 21, Col. 1867, he said:—

"I avail of this opportunity to draw the attention of the Government to the extraordinary poverty that exists in Dublin. The majority of these people are in more than a poverty-stricken state. It is impossible to find words to describe their condition."

In the year 1928 in another debate reported in Vol. 24, Col. 2206-7, Deputy Byrne said:—

"No words of mine could possibly describe the appalling conditions in the tenements of Dublin to-day. I would ask Deputies to take a stroll through Gloucester Street, Gardiner Street, Grenville Street, Henrietta Street and such streets which are within five minutes' walk of Nelson's Pillar. They will find people in the tenements there hungry. I do not wish to exaggerate the conditions that obtain in the tenements of Dublin to-day, but I take this opportunity of asking the Minister if he will take the words of the inspectors, of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, or the Roomkeepers' Society. Both those societies are heavily in debt as the result of the administration of relief."

In 1929 Deputy Byrne said:—

"The matter to which I wish to draw the attention of the House is causing grave anxiety to people outside who are aware of the appalling conditions that exist in quarters where unemployment most prevails. People are asking how are the unemployed who are not entitled to unemployment benefit and who have no means of livelihood existing."

That was on April 12th, 1929, when Deputy Byrne had been translated to the Seanad and had also joined the Cumann na nGaedheal Party. I am not quoting these speeches in order to justify inactivity in relation to unemployment to-day. I am quoting them to dispose of the ridiculous contention made by Deputy Mulcahy that unemployment is something of recent growth which has its cause in the financial dispute with Great Britain, and which would cease to exist with the termination of that dispute.

I want to make an apology to Deputy Mulcahy. The Minister for Local Government on the 10th March, 1926, was Mr. Séamus Burke, his colleague, of the Cumann na nGaedheal Party.

Will the Minister quote him?

He said:

"We know that very often money given in this way can be spent in publichouses, etc., and by giving food we ensure that, at all events, nobody is going to die of hunger and nobody who is reduced to that condition need have any scruples or need feel in any way embarrassed in coming forward for this relief."

The whole debate was on the proposal that relief should be given in kind and not in cash. I want to try to impress upon Deputies opposite how ridiculous is the contention that the termination of the financial dispute with Great Britain could have any permanent or substantial effect upon the unemployment position here. It is futile for them to argue that there is any action open to this, or any other Government that may occupy these benches, which would secure for Saorstát agricultural produce an unrestricted entry into the British market. Deputies opposite are continually making speeches, here and throughout the country, in which they are obviously endeavouring to persuade the people, particularly the farmers, into the belief that there is something which could be done by us or by them which would secure a free entry for agricultural produce into Great Britain. I am quite certain that they are not as ignorant as they pretend to be. I am quite certain that when they make these speeches they know they are misleading or attempting to mislead the farmers. I do not think they are succeeding in misleading them.

I quoted here on a previous occasion correspondence which had passed between the Government of New Zealand and the Government of Great Britain in which the Government of New Zealand had put up the definite query to the British Government, that if they were to give a completely free entry into New Zealand for all English products or to effect an all-round substantial reduction in the tariffs on British goods, would New Zealand products on that account be exempted from quota restrictions in Great Britain. The British Government replied that they would not. They turned down the proposition. Since then we have had further confirmation of the attitude of the British Government. In the London Times there appeared on the 25th of this month, that is, this week, a report from their correspondent in Sydney of a speech made by Mr. Bruce, the Australian High Commissioner in Great Britain, who was attending a conference in Australia, concerning the agricultural position there.

"Australia," Mr. Bruce is reported to have said, "could gain nothing better by attempting to ignore world action and trying to export without limit, for she would find herself deprived of markets. Great Britain was the only available market for lamb and butter and Australia must make the best arrangement possible in view of the fact that Great Britain was determined to restore her own agriculture."

On the following day, the 26th, that is yesterday, the Irish Independent reported a speech made by Mr. Huggins, Premier of Southern Rhodesia, in which he referred to the fact that Southern Rhodesia would have to make its own agreements with other countries if Great Britain was not prepared to give reasonable quotas to her Colonies. It is, however, not necessary to go to New Zealand, Australia or Southern Rhodesia in order to get confirmation of the attitude of the British Government. In the London Times on the 10th of this month there was reported a discussion which took place in the House of Commons on a motion relating to agriculture. In the discussion the main criticism of the British Government was directed to the fact that they had failed to take effective action to increase the price of cattle and Mr. Ormsby Gore, the First Commissioner for Works, replying on behalf of the British Minister for Agriculture, who was ill at the time, referred to the fact that all statistical evidence showed that the consumption of beef was steadily going down, and then he said:

"Without tariffs, regulations and quotas he did not think there was any branch of British agriculture which could survive."

I referred here on the last occasion to a statement issued by Mr. Stanley Baldwin to the British National Farmers' Union and to other speeches made by other members of the British Cabinet, all of which were directed to emphasising the fact that it was the policy of the British Government, having regard to their internal situation, to restrict drastically imports of all agricultural goods into Great Britain and that that policy was going to be maintained. It is, therefore, I suggest not merely foolish, from a purely Party point of view, but stupid from a national point of view, for Deputies opposite to be wasting their time trying to convince the people that there is anything which we can do which would secure unrestricted entry for our agricultural produce into Britain. The only circumstance which would make such a thing possible would be a complete reversal of the present policy of the British Government, and there is no indication that such a reversal is going to take place. On the contrary, there is every indication that the policy adopted by the British Minister for Agriculture, and now in operation, has got very substantial support in Great Britain and is going to be maintained. In these circumstances we have got to face the fact that, no matter what the future of our relations with Great Britain, we are going to be faced with quota restrictions on agricultural produce going into the British market. Because of that fact, we have, obviously, got to review the position here and take whatever measures are necessary in order to prevent these restrictions involving unnecessary and preventable hardships for our people.

In so far as the agricultural position has a bearing upon industrial employment, we have got again to face the fact that the available indices all show that there has been no substantial falling off in the agricultural purchasing power. The actual consumption of all classes of goods, whether manufactured foodstuffs, wearing apparel or the like, has increased. That position may be, in a large measure, due to the expenditure which has been undertaken upon relief works. It is, of course, obviously due, in a considerable measure, to the 50 per cent. remission of land annuities and the provision which has been made for the relief of rates on agricultural land and also to the fact that there has been an increase in the forms of agricultural production, which give most employment, brought about by the measures adopted by the Government from time to time. I do not know if Deputies opposite saw in the Press during the last week a report of a British commission which was considering matters relating to unemployment in Great Britain and in which they stressed the fact that employment in agriculture in Great Britain, despite all the efforts of the British Government to increase production, had substantially diminished and that, in fact, there had been a much greater decrease in the employment of agricultural workers in Great Britain than in the case of the workers in any other industry.

That cuts across the Minister's quotation a month ago.

In the interests of humanity we ought to give the British our secret for increasing agricultural employment.

We have no secret, of course, but the British Government is now trying to follow our policy.

Some of the Labour Party consider it a secret because they do not see the employment, and they complain very much about it.

Anybody can see it if the Deputy can.

Let us hear the Minister.

The solution of the unemployment problem is not going to be easy. Nobody has suggested that it is going to be easy. Our predecessors during their ten years in office failed completely to make any impression upon the problem. They left it much worse than it was when they came into office. Its solution is going to depend, first, on the development of industry and, secondly, on the organisation by the State of public works where necessary and useful. On the matter as to the extent to which our plans for the development of industry have progressed another opportunity for stating the position will shortly be available. I do not propose to go into that now. I know that Deputies opposite chortle with joy whenever they are able to record any temporary setback or failure in the Government's industrial plans, and they are continuously endeavouring to represent the position as very much worse than it is in the matter of employment for particular classes of workers. Only last week, Deputy Alfred Byrne went to Wexford and told the people of Wexford that there were more carpenters and more painters unemployed in Dublin than ever there were before. The statement is not true.

A trade union representative said so at a meeting of the Corporation. It was from him I got the information. He said it.

I am going to tell the Deputy what the position is. I took the pains to take out quarterly figures in relation to both these classes of workers for a considerable time back. In October, 1932, the number of carpenters and joiners registered as unemployed was 869. In October, 1933, the number was 368. In October, 1932, the number of painters registered as unemployed was 603. The number in October, 1933, was 465.

Too many.

In January, 1933, the number of carpenters and joiners registered as unemployed was 1,061. In January of the present year the number was 580.

Still too many.

The number of painters registered as unemployed in January, 1933, was 1,084 and in January of the present year the number was 740. Of course, there are too many, but the statement made by the Deputy in Wexford was not true.

Then the statement made by the trade union representative at the Corporation meeting was not true.

I am dealing with the Deputy. I am dealing with the fact that the Deputy, without taking any steps to find out whether the statement was true or not, went down to Wexford to broadcast it.

Tell us what you are going to do.

The Deputy will now be very sympathetic about the numbers that still remain unemployed, but I suggest he would be helping those who are unemployed to get employment by telling the truth about the position and not by misrepresenting it. January is the period of the year when there is least activity in the building trade. The Deputy knows that. Weather conditions prevailing at that time of the year are not conducive to widespread building activities. The Deputy knows quite well that there is much more activity going on in relation to housing, activity of a kind that will absorb these people into employment, than there ever was before in the history of this country. The Minister for Local Government in relation to one class of houses—labourers' cottages—gave figures here yesterday which showed that the number of cottages constructed or under construction or approved for construction since the Fianna Fáil Housing Act was passed 18 months ago, was 20 per cent. of the total number built in the past 50 years, during ten years of which the Deputy's Party was in office when there was very little activity of that kind.

I have no Party and the Minister has no right to say that.

I am sorry if I have provoked another split in the Fine Gael Party.

I am a free lance candidate, but I earnestly express the hope that Deputy Cosgrave will come back and do something for the unemployed of the country.

What is General O'Duffy going to do?

He will help.

Then I take it that General O'Duffy is not going to be President.

Get back to the motion.

I can understand Deputy Morrissey getting excited about the matter.

We are not talking politics to-day. We can do that at meetings outside. Tell us what you are going to do for the hungry people in the tenements in Dublin City who are not able to pay their rents and are getting notices of eviction.

Deputy Byrne can make his own speech afterwards.

See the way you have allowed the Minister to try and draw me.

The Deputy will withdraw that remark.

No, certainly not.

The Deputy must allow the Minister to proceed.

He has been at me for the last ten minutes.

The Deputy must not challenge the ruling of the Chair.

For ten minutes he has been at me. That is a very nice ruling. I am asking about the tenement dwellers in Dublin who are hungry——

The Deputy will conduct himself.

——and the people who are about to be evicted from their homes because they are not able to pay their rent.

Deputy Byrne will conduct himself or leave the Chamber.

I always conducted myself without a prejudiced Chairman telling me what to do.

It is now for the House to deal with the position.

I move: That Deputy Byrne be suspended from the service of the House.

Deputy Byrne has continuously shown his sympathy for the unemployed of Dublin by the fact that he came in here and criticised Ministers in the last Government for their inactivity.

I call the attention of the Chair to the fact that Deputy Byrne is interrupting outside the barrier.

Deputy Byrne will leave the Chamber before he is removed.

In view of the disorders created by Deputy Byrne, I think the Ceann Comhairle should be sent for.

The Minister for Industry and Commerce.

The sincerity of Deputy Byrne's criticism of the previous Government is revealed by the fact that when it suited his political interests to join them he did so. It is easy enough to make speeches about the unemployed. We get plenty of speeches about the unemployed, plenty of lip sympathy, but when our predecessors were in office the number of the unemployed was mounting daily, while the prospect of work was diminishing. The situation has changed now. Works have been made available. There has been more spent on the provision of work for the unemployed, on State-aided schemes, in the two years since Fianna Fáil came into office than there was in the ten years that our predecessors were in office. There have been more houses built in the last 18 months than our predecessors built in ten years. There has been a continuous expansion in industrial production. That is what the Government is doing to aid the unemployed.

It is because the Government is doing that that these hypocrites who prate about unemployment, who give lip sympathy to the unemployed but who are prepared to sacrifice them when it is in their political interests to sacrifice them, are opposing the Government. I am always made feel very indignant when I see the miseries of those who have not got adequate means to provide the necessaries of life paraded here for political propaganda purposes by people who have succeeded in doing very well for themselves out of such tactics in the past.

The development of industry, as I have said, is a matter which we can discuss in more detail in the near future. I merely wanted to indicate that, in relation to industry, there will be many difficulties. There has been the suggestion that having regard to the increased mechanisation in industry now proceeding, a reduction in hours of work would maintain the employment position. In theory it is possible to contend that it would not and it has, in fact, been argued that a reduction in the hours of work of those engaged in any industry, if it does not involve, as it should not involve, a reduction in their earnings, will increase the cost of their products to such an extent that consumption will fall off, leaving the employment position unchanged. That contention was made in all places where this matter has been considered and particularly at the International Labour Office Conventions, where various proposals for the reduction of hours of work were made. I think there must be a fallacy in that argument, although it is not easy to see it. There is sufficient in it to justify us moving with considerable caution in that direction and certainly no legislation should be adopted that did not involve a minute examination of the position of every industry before any orders affecting a reduction in the hours of work would be brought into force.

On the matter of public works, what the Government has done, is doing, and is contemplating in that connection will be stated by the Minister for Finance, who is more directly in touch with the activities. I stated the Government's plan for dealing with unemployment was threefold. I said it involved the creation of three lines of defence against destitution arising from unemployment. The first line of defence is the development of industry. Deputy Norton thinks that all the industrial development possible in this country would not be capable of providing employment for all those without work. That may be so, but it has yet to be proved. It is something which we will have to examine in detail when more information is at our disposal. Personally, I am inclined to believe that the actual number of persons out of work can be provided with work in industry or indirectly in other occupations as a result of industrial expansion to the extent that is possible here. In any case, the development of industry necessarily is a fairly slow process. However, it constitutes the first line. The second line is the inauguration and the continuous operation of a scheme for financing useful public works where they can be undertaken in various parts of the country.

Behind these two lines of defence is the third line, the Unemployment Assistance Act. I know there are many people who criticise that Act and who say it is unwise to provide cash subsistence for workers without requiring work in return. There are obvious answers to that contention. First, it is not possible to devise any system of providing work of a kind which will secure that work will be available in every part of the country at the time it is required and to the extent that will be sufficient to absorb the unemployed in a particular district. Human ingenuity could not bring into operation a system of that kind. I know the Party opposite are trying to meet that difficulty by proposing to conscript the workers into battalions and march them around the country looking for work to do, permitting them to write home once a week to their relatives and perhaps to send them some of their earnings. I am quite certain such a system as that will never be in operation in this country under any circumstances.

The main justification for an assistance scheme that does not require work in return for the actual cash benefits given is that the inaguration of a system of public work of such a universal kind that an assistance scheme of the type in operation will not be necessary is not possible. Secondly, there is the very considerable fact that it costs a lot more to put the worker at work than to provide him with assistance without the obligation of work. I agree fully that it is much better that workers should be provided with work rather than with assistance. Both from the point of view of national gain and the effect on the individual, it is much better that relief should be given in the form of work rather than in the form of cash benefit not involving the working condition. But whereas a man can be provided with the necessary means of sustaining himself and his family for a reasonable sum per week, it would cost almost double that amount to give the man the same subsistence under a work scheme, because the inauguration of a work scheme involves not merely the provision of tools and implements, but also supervision and, over and above the supervisors, the necessary technicians, engineers and the like who have to plan the work, the cost of which must be charged against the scheme.

Therefore, the justification for the inauguration of an unemployment assistance scheme is that it is devised to secure that where the worker cannot be provided for immediately in industry or by a State scheme of public work of some kind, he will nevertheless be protected against destitution to the extent that the Unemployment Assistance Act does protect him automatically. The principle is that the worker is given a statutory right to that protection. It is the first time in the history of this State that the worker has had that statutory right. In that regard we have advanced much further than European countries or most other countries in the world. It may be that the amount of assistance under that Act is limited. It is limited only because our means are limited; but the principle which it embodies is a sound one and one which was subscribed to by all Parties in this House some time ago, even though the leaders of the opposite Party have since departed from it.

The motion before the House emphasises the necessity for public works. I think the Government can claim that its public works programme up to date has been very extensive and has produced beneficial results, not merely in the creation of the actual works but in maintaining commercial activity through the country, and it is the intention of the Government to continue those works in the same manner until the development of industry has rendered them less necessary.

We have been given to understand from various quarters, including the Minister for Finance, that the Minister for Industry and Commerce is the "bright particular star" of the Fianna Fáil Government. That may be so, but he suffers, if I may say so, from one serious intellectual defect, a defect perhaps characteristic of his enviable gift of youth, and that is a certain arrogance in his attitude towards anyone who has the misfortune to disagree with him. Members of this Party are quite as capable of seeing political facts and drawing inferences from them as is the Minister for Industry and Commerce. I am sure that, as he grows older, he will come to realise that and will, by degrees, discard the arrogance of which I speak and which, while it may give him satisfaction for the moment, does detract considerably from his charm.

Every single one of the quotations which the Minister for Industry and Commerce read to us on the subject of Great Britain's trade relations with the various Dominions has been the subject of attention by my colleagues and myself. We have not by any means shirked the issue to which such quotations give rise. Whereas, however, it seems to the Minister for Industry and Commerce that the British policy of tariff regulations and quotas is something that is necessarily fatal to our main agricultural export trade to Great Britain, it seems to us, on the contrary, that that orientation of British policy is something which can be of definite advantage to this country if we take the necessary steps to make it of advantage to this country. The Minister for Industry and Commerce appears to neglect the fact that there are very considerable differences between our position and the position, say, of Australia or New Zealand, Southern Rhodesia or other distant parts of the British Dominions. There is, in the first place, the element of distance, the geographical element, which is quite an important one. Aside from that, however, it has been a characteristic of Great Britain's trade relations with her various Dominions that she has always been receiving from them a far larger volume of goods than they have been willing to take from her. Now, that does not apply to this country. The strength of our position is that we are a magnificent market and always have been a magnificent market for the British manufacturer; that the British necessarily are anxious to retain that market, and that whatever we may do—and I am all in favour of doing a great deal—to start native industries in this country, we must still import a large quantity of goods from elsewhere. For geographical reasons and for reasons of our own commercial interest the natural place to import them from is Great Britain.

That being so, we have an enormous bargaining power. Therefore, it seems to us that, Great Britain having abandoned a policy of free trade, which made it impossible for her to give any special advantages to the Irish producer in her market, it would, in the normal course, have been open to us to secure for ourselves in that market a far better position than we had ever held before. We believe that, in spite of the opportunity that was thrown away at the Ottawa Conference, it is still open to us to do that when another Government comes into office or when the present Government sees the light. We are frequently being accused by Ministers of having no other interest than to drive the Government on the rocks. Our real interest is to save the country from being driven on the rocks, and we are only anxious to drive the Government on the rocks in so far as that might contribute towards saving the country from being driven on the rocks. If the Government would adopt a commonsense policy and take advantage of the opportunities that have been created by the economic situation in Great Britain we would be very far from offering any factious opposition in connection with that.

As regards the question of unemployment, I do not doubt the sincerity of the Government's desires to make as much impression as they can on the unemployment problem in this country. Surely, however, it is very remarkable that, in spite of all the money they have spent and all the efforts they have made, they have succeeded in making so very little impression on it. The truth of the matter is that expenditure of public money, and especially the expenditure of public money on public works, goes a terribly short way towards making any real impression on unemployment. What does make an impression on unemployment is the natural and normal development of industry in a country where confidence and courage prevail. It is just that that has made so big an impression on unemployment in Great Britain. Expenditure on relief of unemployment was greater a few years ago in Great Britain than it is to-day, and yet the unemployment problem kept getting worse and worse, and it is only because, under a Government which balanced its Budget, confidence revived and people put their heart and their money into making the wheels of industry go round, that a very considerable reduction has been made in the number of unemployed in Great Britain.

The Minister for Industry and Commerce speaks to-day of what can be accomplished by way of new industries towards reducing unemployment. He speaks of that in a very different tone from the tone in which Ministers were accustomed to speak of it at election times. We are all able to remember when we used to be assured that the conquest of unemployment was a relatively easy matter and that it was only because of the extraordinary denseness of the old Cumann na nGaedheal Government and their lethargy in the matter of starting new industries that it had not been conquered long ago. I was not present to hear Deputy Norton, but I understood, from the Minister's remark, that Deputy Norton expressed the view that new industries never could conquer entirely the problem of unemployment here. The Minister for Industry and Commerce was not prepared to go so far as that, but at any rate he did feel obliged to speak in a very hesitant tone as to the extent to which new industries could take care of the unemployment question. Now, I am sure that new industries can do something. I think that, up to the present, they have done very little, because whatever employment the Government have been able to create by fostering new industries, they have balanced it by the amount of unemployment they have created in destroying an old industry and in destroying our main industry. The Minister for Industry and Commerce speaks of agricultural expenditure being high. If so, the reason is simple enough. It is a reason to which the Minister himself alluded—the amount of Government money that in one shape or form or another has been distributed to the poorer members of the agricultural community which, no doubt, has tended to keep up the general volume of agricultural buying. But, unless the Minister is deliberately shutting his eyes to the facts, he must know that there are countless farmers throughout the country who, during the last two years, have had their life's savings swept away. We have all been in touch with such men; men who have worked hard all their lives and, perhaps, succeeded in scraping together a few hundred or a thousand pounds and they now, as the result of the last two years, find that they are back again at scratch and that their children will have to start in as poor circumstances, or in poorer circumstances, than those in which they themselves started.

The fundamental factor of the unemployment situation is the same as that which is the fundamental factor in almost all our difficulties in the present time and that is the decline of agriculture; the impossibility of a farmer making profits out of farming; the fact that only by Government assistance in its various forms is any farmer to-day able to keep his head above water. If the Labour Party are zealous, as I am sure they are zealous, to reduce the misery that exists in this country to-day as the result of unemployment, they cannot possibly do better than to co-operate with us in striving to bring the Government to a sense of realities and to effect a settlement of the financial dispute between ourselves and the British Government.

Deputy MacDermot has tried to show that the quota system, instead of being a disadvantage to us in disposing of our agricultural produce, will be a distinct advantage. That is a rather peculiar way of reasoning. I wonder how he arrived at that conclusion. He told us about our bargaining power. New Zealand, which undoubtedly has a bargaining power, put up an offer to Great Britain to allow her imports into New Zealand free, or nearly free, if she were given an increased quota for her exports to Great Britain, but that offer was refused. Doubtless, the great love that Great Britain has for the Party opposite, greater than the love she has for her colonists in New Zealand, would induce Great Britain to strike a far better bargain with the Party opposite than with the people of New Zealand. They would be prepared to do for Deputy MacDermot and his colleagues what they would not do for New Zealand.

Has the Deputy stopped to inquire what quantity of British goods New Zealand is likely to take in, even receiving them free, as compared with the quantity of agricultural produce that New Zealand is in a position to export to Great Britain?

New Zealand put up certain tariffs against British goods during the past five or six years. She offered to withdraw those tariffs and buy all the goods she wanted from Great Britain if Great Britain was prepared to give an increased quota in return and she was told that Great Britain was not.

The Deputy is evading my question.

I am answering it. I should like to know what service Deputy MacDermot considers his Party has rendered to Great Britain greater than the service which Great Britain's colonists in New Zealand have rendered to her that the British Government would be prepared to give concessions to Deputy MacDermot's Party greater than they would give even to their colonists in New Zealand. What is the price? Let us have it. We have had the same old simulation from Deputy Alfred Byrne here to-day that we usually associate with his speeches. He declared solemnly that he was not a member of any political Party and at the same time he solemnly expressed the hope that Deputy Cosgrave would come back as President. Some time ago I happened to look up some past history which shows what those people are prepared to do when political force compels them to give another twist. I have here the Dáil Debates for 20th April, 1926, volume 15, column 824, and I find the following discussion:—

"Mr. A. Byrne: I will detain the House only a few minutes. I desire to add a few words to what has been stated by Deputy Norton regarding ex-soldiers. Recently I drew the attention of the Minister for Industry and Commerce to a number of cases where young men joined the National Army a couple of years ago and, when joining, they were in insurable occupations. In many cases they had 20, 40 and in one case up to 84 stamps to their credit. In the course of the big demobilisation which has recently taken place—men being demobilised on an average of 30 to 40 a day—these young men were put out of the Army without their cards being stamped.

"The President: There was nobody put out of the Army and that statement is false. The statement is either true or false. It is false to say that men were put out of the Army to the extent of 30 to 40 a day."

Has not this to do with the stamping of unemployment insurance cards rather than the unemployment problem itself?

This is definitely concerned with unemployment.

As far as the Deputy has gone he has been quoting references to the non-stamping of the unemployment insurance cards of men who were leaving the Army. Are we to come to the unemployment portion later on?

Yes, certainly. Deputy Byrne was then alluding to these unemployed men and he said:—

"Either their time expired or they were legally discharged from the Army."

Will the Deputy indicate what that debate arose on?

The Unemployment Insurance Bill.

That has no reference to the problem of unemployment itself.

I am just showing what weight can be attached to the statements made by Deputy Byrne about unemployment and, particularly, his definite longing for the return of Deputy Cosgrave to power to relieve his particular class of unemployment. The debate continued:

"The President: It is a good job we got that out of you.

"Mr. A. Byrne: If you want it that way you can have it. I know what ails you and the gang that is around you.

"The President: Say what is honest and do not be making false statements.

"Mr. A. Byrne: If I were not a member of the old Irish Parliamentary Party I would not have you or the likes of you abusing me."

What has all this got to do with the relief of unemployment and the motion before the House? The Deputy has himself acknowledged that these statements by Deputy Byrne and the then President arose on the debate on unemployment insurance and not on a definite motion regarding the relief of unemployment.

Might I remind you, Sir, that on previous discussions on unemployment and unemployment relief, there have been long and fairly definite discussions on the subject of whether people with cards should have them stamped?

That may be so, but, clearly on this motion, whether the cards of people leaving the Army should or should not be stamped scarcely arises.

I do not want to go further into that matter. I will merely wind up by saying that Deputy Byrne's statement that he was anxious to have Deputy Cosgrave back and his statement in this report that Deputy Cosgrave was low enough for anything seems somewhat to conflict. I am sorry that Deputy MacDermot has cleared out, because we might have got from him the price which his Party were prepared to pay to Britain or what the services are which, in their opinion, they are rendering to Britain, which would induce Britain to give them a better bargain than she would give to her own colonies. I should like to hear that from Deputy MacDermot or from some of those who support him. He said that we were destroying employment in agriculture. I know that agriculturists, and farmers generally, are going through a fairly tough time.

You are beginning to realise that.

I have always realised it and I realise that if the policy of Deputy Bennett and his associates had been carried on during the past three years they would have gone through a tougher time still. If the Deputy or those with him can show us how they increased employment in agriculture during their period in office, there might be something in his reasoning. I have not seen it. Undoubtedly, our policy will improve employment in agriculture. Employment will be given in the dividing up of the land and in the fencing in of those ranches after we have divided them up and in building houses and out-offices for landless men who will then have some piece of Ireland's ground to till and from which to provide a living for their families. In Westmeath, when I was down there during a by-election, I saw 980 acres of the finest land in this country run over by a man and a dog. That was the happy condition of employment afforded by the Cumann na nGaedheal Government when they were in office. That is the way they were promoting employment. They were certainly promoting employment for the dogs in rounding up the bullocks. When we have finished dividing up that ranch, it will give employment to 18 or 20 families, together with all the employment that will be given in rebuilding the ditches that were razed by the British during the last 40 or 50 years, according as each patch was brought, not under the plough, but under the bullock.

Let us take the system of tillage. We have now got back in this country to the wheat production that we had during the war years of 1917 and 1918. I would say that there is as much wheat grown in the country this year as we grew in 1918 and in ploughing that, preparing the soil for it and the tilling and threshing of it, together with the work in the mills, employment will be given. I do not think that even Deputy Bennett would argue that the 960 acres with the man, the bullock and the dog will give as much employment as will be given by a pair of horses and a plough.

A cow would.

We have provided for the cow and Deputy Bennett knows that we have because he broke away from his Party to support us in providing for the cow.

And the calf.

And the calf as well.

The calf is well provided for!

Deputy Bennett's policy with regard to the calf was very well tried out and we saw the result of it. If Deputy Bennett will go down to the Library and spend ten minutes there, he will find a set of figures that will almost convert him to our system even in regard to the calf.

This is a motion dealing with unemployment.

And I am particularly engaged on unemployment at the moment. I am showing the employment that is provided on the land and that, I take it, is the principal argument put up against us—that we are running agriculture, as Deputy MacDermot says, and preventing employment on the land. That is the argument I am refuting. If, instead of conjuring up lies to tell the people at the crossroads on the following Sunday or the yarns they will spin to the next Blue Shirt demonstration, Deputies will study the statistics down there, they will learn a little. Deputy Bennett will learn a lot about calves if he goes down there.

He knows all about them.

He will find that we exported far more live-stock in 1931 to Britain before there was a tariff war than we exported in 1926. He will see the lesser amount of money that we got in 1931 than we got in 1926 and those figures will open his eyes.

I know them all.

If you did, you would not be talking this way with your tongue in your cheek. It is rather amusing to hear the Party opposite speaking about what they did to provide employment on the land during their period of office. The farmers down in my constituency were always more or less engaged in tillage. They believed in the plough and in tilling the land. What was the result? The Deputies opposite told us that our grain was worth the world's price and they told us to go and compete with the rancher in Canada, and if we grew wheat in this country as cheaply as the Canadian rancher can grow it, we would get a market for it, but that if we did not, we had no business growing it at all.

The Canadian ranchers do not grow wheat.

They do, and if you go out there you will find that out. You were in Australia for a while and you saw a lot of it.

This is not the place for this discussion.

They drove the agricultural labourers off the land during the ten years they were in office. They drove every one of them off the land. We had them leaning over the fences looking at the bullocks fattening under the policy of the Minister for Grass. That system is now changed. I know that on account of my increased tillage activities on my farm of land I had to employ three extra men, and I will be able to give them permanent employment. Even our policy in that direction is bearing good fruit. I can see around my district Cumann na nGaedheal farmers who sacked their men under the orders of Cumann na nGaedheal, immediately after the last general election, now running after them and getting them back. I admit that during a period of four or five months after the last general election we had a certain amount of unemployment in agricultural districts where you had this policy: "What way are you voting? You are not going to be employed by me if you do not vote right." We have the very same kind of policy being worked out to-day: "If you are going to work on my farm you must wear a blue shirt." We have that policy, and we know it. We are taking steps to deal with that particular class of gentleman—the gentleman who sacked his labourers. Fancy a farmer with 150 acres sacking two or three men and turning them out on the side of the road, while at the same time being able to keep a motor car, paying the licence, and paying for petrol, to drive him around to the Blue Shirt meetings.

That is a nasty one.

It may be a nasty one, but it is a plain honest fact. I know that. They will not pay their rates or annuities, but they will keep a car.

What about the car?

We will round that up later on. It may be handy for the county council elections. That is the position of affairs. They are the men who come up here and talk about unemployment. I know very well we are finding difficulties in regard to industrial enterprise. Why? Because we have the very same thing there. We have Deputies on the opposite benches striving to the utmost of their power to create a position of unrest in this country; endeavouring to get people to believe that the country is in such a state of unrest that it is not safe to invest their money here. Deputies should at least mind themselves when they are making those wild statements through the country. Of course we have General O'Duffy's cure for all that. He is going to conscript the whole hang lot and drive them into my patch to-day and another patch to-morrow, all in blue shirts. We will see them turned out on the fields to work, driven, I suppose, into the cow-houses every night and stalled in with the cows.

It would be a blue outlook then.

They will be allowed to write home once a week to their wives. That is the cure which the Party opposite suggests for unemployment. Are they prepared to stand over their leader in that respect, and conscript armies of workers in the Corporative Commonwealth? I have compared the manner in which unemployment relief money was spent during the time Deputies opposite were in office and the manner in which it is spent now. I must say there has been a great improvement. Far more employment has been given out of far less money. Down in my constituency one grant of £250, which was given about a year and a half ago, if I am not mistaken, has provided constant employment for 37 men ever since. In about a fortnight's time, when machinery has been installed, it will give employment to at least 30 more; that is 60 men getting permanent employment out of a £250 relief grant. Beat that! I should like to hear any of you tell us that the payment of 29/- a week was working out all right with you.

Does the Deputy say that a grant of £250 employed 35 people? You will save the whole world.

I will give you the facts.

Give them to the Minister.

I know the facts.

A Deputy

Apply them generally.

I will give them to the House. There are four other Deputies here from my constituency, and I challenge them to contradict me. I will give the facts of the case. Down in a place called Cloyne in East Cork there is a mineral deposit. It was discovered some years ago, and appeals were made to the Cumann na nGaedheal Government practically every year for a grant towards development of that mineral deposit. I hold at present I think about nine letters from Government Departments refusing to give any grant towards the development of that mineral deposit. I will produce them here in the House on some occasion and read them for the edification of Deputies opposite. I made an appeal that some of the relief money be put into the development of that deposit. We got a grant of £250 from the Parliamentary Secretary here, who went down to inspect the work. It proved successful. One hundred thousand tons of deposit of clay were found. Every penny of that £250 was spent on labour in the first instance. The arrangement was, "If we give you a grant of £250 it will all be spent on labour and you will have to put up an equivalent amount yourselves," with the result that there was £500 spent on labour in the first instance. A company was formed——

Out of the £250?

No, but out of money subscribed by people who have faith in Irish industry, which you never had. People were found with enough faith in that industry to put £7,000 of their own money into the development of it. It was developed and at present over 30 men are employed. Those men have been working in that mine during the past 12 months. A short time ago it was decided to put up a factory beside that mine, for the purpose of preparing the stuff and sending out the finished article.

What is it?

You would not know if you saw it.

It would be hard for anybody to know as much as you.

When that factory is finished—it is practically finished now, and the machinery is going into it— it will give employment to 30 more. That makes 60 men who have found permanent employment out of £250. The Cumann na nGaedheal Government could have done that at any time during the five years prior to their going out of office, and they would not do it. They did not want that kind of thing. They did not want industries in this country developed, because that might interfere with their bargaining power across the water. It might interfere with the market for bullocks. That is only one instance of the manner in which that money could be used, and one instance of the manner in which we have relieved unemployment. I will give other instances along the line. One of the factories down there used to give employment to about 19 or 20

Deputy McGilligan brought in a tariff here that wiped that out. He put a 25 per cent. tariff on the raw material and a 20 per cent. tariff on the finished article. It closed down three months before Cumann na nGaedheal left office. That factory is giving employment to 80 hands, and another factory on the same lines started about six months ago is giving employment to about 70 hands. Those are definite instances in which unemployment has been relieved, not temporarily, but by giving permanent employment. We had also an old shovel mills lying idle there for several years. The roof was gone. It was one of the monuments to the ability of Deputy McGilligan to look after the interests of the country. That monument was there for ten years. An individual who had faith in Irish enterprise got those mills going. Deputy Anthony knows the place—Templemichael. At present the shovel factory is giving employment to about 20 hands. The person concerned has got a loan from the Industrial Credit Corporation with which he is purchasing machinery which will enable him to make all the forks required in this country—both hay forks and manure forks.

How much is the loan?

I think it is £1,700. In respect of that, he will, of course, pay interest and principal. Within the next 12 months I hope to be able to stand up in this House and say that that factory is giving employment to men. There is nothing to stop that man from going on and giving employment to 150 or 200 hands. He knows that Fianna Fáil has come to stay. He knows that he has a safe investment in Irish industry. He knows that he can go ahead and that he will always have a Government prepared to stand by his industry and give him a chance. That is the manner in which unemployment can be relieved. If Deputy MacDermot would only dig down into his money bag and start some little industry that would give employment he would do a lot better work than coming up here and talking about these men being out of employment. Have a little faith in the country in which you are living. If I had any money left after the raids made on my unfortunate pockets for the last ten or twelve years by Deputy Cosgrave and his hirelings, I would invest myself——

You would not pay men to pull your turnips.

I have seen Deputies of your Party getting up and waving over their heads notices from the sheriff. These very men got from the sheriff six or seven notices during the time that Deputy Cosgrave was in office. What is the good of that kind of humbug?

You could cover the whole country with notices now.

I have dealt with two industries in my constituency. I can go a step further. At the time we came into office, two flour mills had notified that they were about to close down. Another mill had closed down three years before that. These three mills are working now and are giving employment to 150 and 200 men, as compared with 27 and 30 men, respectively, before we came into office. That is the way to give employment and get industries going instead of the mess-up that was going on for a number of years. I am prepared to admit that we have not solved the problem of unemployment. The principal reason we have not solved it is the definite move made by the Opposition during the past 12 months to create a state of unrest, to foster the idea that Fianna Fáil will go out and that there will be no further protection for industry. They say: "You do not know what is going to happen in this country. Look at the Blue Shirts and the I.R.A. You are going to have another war."

Who speaks about civil war?

You know nothing about any war.

Who speaks about civil war?

Your leader—I do not know whether you admit he is your leader or not—General O'Duffy. He talks about establishing a dictatorship. How is he going to establish it? Did he think he was going to be allowed to establish it without a fight?

Bring back the R.I.C.

It is that talk of civil war that has done untold harm all over the country——

On a point of order, I do not like to interrupt Deputy Corry or any other Deputy, but I should like to know the occasion on which General O'Duffy said he was out to establish a dictatorship.

That is not a point of order.

A mis-statement like that should not be allowed to pass. If I stand up, I am immediately shouted down.

If Deputy Anthony will look up the Official Report of the proceedings of this House he will see that the full statement was read out on three different occasions.

I never heard it.

Deputy Anthony is not one who can hide his head under a bush; he is too long for that. He can find out that information from anybody.

Everybody knows that Deputy Corry gets more latitude than any other Deputy. He is allowed to say anything he likes.

I am sure that Deputy Anthony has read the statement in the public Press.

I never did.

If not, I will send it to you and relieve your ignorance in that respect as soon as I can. The attitude of Deputies opposite is causing unrest and is giving rise to a feeling that is preventing our industrial programme from going through as quickly as we should wish. I have repeatedly had to explain to people, definitely and clearly, that there was no fear at all that these gentlemen who are only seeking by hook or by crook to get back would ever be returned. I was asked these questions only a fortnight ago by a man who was interested in the starting of a tanning industry. He would give employment at the start to 60 men and, ultimately, to 200. He was an Englishman. He was in Ireland a year and a half ago and he would have started work then but that he was told that President de Valera would be knocked out before the last election. That Englishman came back three weeks ago to start an industry here and give employment because he knew very well that there was no fear of the people ever being lunatics enough to return the old gang again.

Give us a chance and we will beat you.

Deputies opposite got a chance during the present week of having practically a general election and testing the feeling of the people. The bald-headed youths do not want the ordinary youths to have any voice in affairs. The League of Youth Movement, which is controlled by bald heads, blue shirts, and long beards, does not want to give any of the ordinary youths an opportunity of judging their actions. Deputies on the opposite benches cannot deny that if we had the same franchise for local elections as we have for general elections, we would have a pretty fair test. I must apologise, a Chinn Comhairle, for digressing, but when I am interrupted I have to reply.

If I did that I would be suspended. I would not get such a chance.

Deputies on the opposite benches had a very fair opportunity of having a test, as when General O'Duffy said that he was sorry the youth of the country had not an opportunity of pronouncing on our actions, we immediately reintroduced the Franchise Bill, but the Seanad threw it out.

The Deputy has dealt with that already. Come back to the motion.

I have given one instance of the faith that has been shown in the future of industry. A continuance of protection is the only hope for industry here. If industry flops, no bargain made by Deputy MacDermot, with bullocks as a bargaining power, will avail. I am sure if the man who has established a tannery had a chat with Deputy MacDermot the Deputy might be able to ease his mind by saying whether the little tannery was to be included in the bargain and whether imports of leather were to be set off against the bargain made on behalf of the bullocks. Perhaps the man who established a shovel, spade and fork industry in Templemichael could be told if his little factory was to be scrapped, as well as the tannery, in order to provide a market for the bullocks. Undoubtedly these things are causing a certain amount of unrest. That is why I am asking Deputy MacDermot to be more explicit than he was in the statement he made that the quota system was going to give him a better advantage, instead of being a hindrance to the export of cattle to Great Britain. He hinted about the amount of stuff that we were to bring in and the bargain that he would make. We want to know the extent to which Deputy MacDermot was prepared to go in the bargain. Industrialists and labourers, who are unemployed and for whom we are endeavouring to find employment by starting industries here, would like to know the extent to which Deputy MacDermot is going to sacrifice their interests for the sake of a 980-acre Westmeath farmer who keeps bullocks, one man and a dog.

If the Deputy would like an answer to that question, I would be prepared to accept approximately the same quantity of goods from Great Britain that Great Britain would be prepared to accept from us. That seems to me to be fair enough.

I am afraid the Deputy has given rather a twist to the answer. If we had, for instance, 20,000 more bullocks than we have room for English imports, what would be the position? Is Deputy MacDermot prepared to say to those in the leather trade, or to those connected with the shovel factory, that they will have to close down? Is he prepared to tell the flour millers that they will have to import English flour, because we have 20,000 bullocks that we want to get an export market for? As these things are troubling people's minds we would like to hear Deputy MacDermot's views on them. What better bargain is Deputy MacDermot prepared to make? What shot has he in the locker? What service has the United Ireland Party rendered to Britain that places it on a higher plane than Britain's own Colonies, within the Empire? Is Deputy MacDermot going to advocate the re-establishment of the United Kingdom, as part of the bargain? Is that what he is driving at? Can he deliver the goods, if he is prepared to do so? Undoubtedly we can provide far more employment in this country. We are doing so. One thing I am glad of is, that no man is going to be allowed to die of starvation here.

We are doing it to-day.

That day is gone.

It is not gone.

If the Deputy would go home and kill a bullock——

They are dying with the hunger. The Deputy does not know what he is saying. There are people living on potatoes, particularly farmers. If he does not know that I will show him the place.

We heard that statement before. I heard last year in County Cork that the rates could not be paid. It was the same this year, moaning about the rates, but in one month £90,000 was paid. I know that the farmers are having a difficult time, a tough time.

You know nothing about it.

I am a farmer, and I know more about it than the Deputy.

You are a hand-fed farmer.

I am not going to mineral waters for my living.

You are not living out of a farm.

I am and I realise that the farmers are hard hit. Deputies are not going to get away with the game they played down the country for 12 months, having regard to the manner in which unemployment was created, and then to come back here and talk about people being unemployed. Why are they unemployed? Why have we to provide for unemployment here? Is it not due to their actions? Should they not realise that, and should they not be patriotic enough, even now, to come along and to endeavour to assist in, instead of hindering, the giving of employment?

We are keeping our men. We are borrowing money to keep them in order not to let them go away.

I grant that there are people like the Deputy who may be doing that. I wish he could instil a little of that spirit into his followers, at least in County Cork.

I am speaking with definite knowledge. I know that in my parish there is one man who has 230 acres of land. He sacked two of his men; this man keeps his motor car in which he drives to every Blue Shirt meeting within 70 miles. He can afford to pay for petrol but he could not afford to pay the few shillings a week he was paying to his unfortunate labourers. We have that kind of thing going on. Then we hear from others the cry "whatever man works for me must wear a blue shirt." The sooner Deputies opposite try to change that thing the better. We have a definite attempt made by a leader of the so-called farmers to wreck one of the biggest industries in the south, the beet sugar industry in Mallow. This is the creature who sold his farm in County Cork and now farms the farmers for a living, a gentleman whom a Deputy on the opposite benches told a month ago was only a diningroom farmer.

A drawingroom farmer, he said.

Deputy Corry does not know the difference——

Deputy Belton does not know it.

——between a diningroom and a drawingroom.

The Deputy had better not draw me into that. We have that kind of policy from a leader and a member of the Executive of the U.I.P. getting up in any county and endeavouring to spike an industry that was giving employment to a couple of hundred men and, at the same time, providing an assured market to the farmers of the country. That is the kind of policy that is going to do harm to the country, and it is doing it at present. It is an outrageous proceeding. Then we have representatives coming in here talking about unemployment on the land caused by the policy of the present Government. That was Deputy MacDermot's speech, that unemployment on the land was caused by the policy of the present Government. We have one of the leaders of that Party getting up in Cork and telling the farmers that they are not to grow beet because he was not quite satisfied with the colour of the shirts that were worn by the employees of the beet factory at Mallow. It is time that sort of game ended. Deputies who come in here talking about unemployment would do far better service to the country if they went down to the buckshee leaders and gave them some kind of advice so as to try to instil some sense of responsibility into them and not carry on in the way they have been carrying on. That way is not fair and just and it will not help in providing employment. I do not wish to take up the time of the House.

I have put the case before you. Unfortunately we have an unemployment problem and we have, undoubtedly, gone a long part of the way towards solving that problem. We could go the whole way towards solving it if Deputies opposite would give a little assistance instead of playing the game they are playing. On the one hand they say to their followers: "Create unemployment; you can call it unrest. You can disturb the country as much as you can and then we can all get up here and talk about unemployment. They will employ 200 to 300 people in Mallow at the beet factory, but you can go down and spike that." Do Deputies opposite think we are blind? We have seen that game worked out time and again. Are Deputies opposite going to accept any kind of responsibility for the action of their followers down the country? Are they prepared to stand over the actions of those men? Is Deputy MacDermot prepared to defend the attitude of the man who endeavours to prevent the farmers of County Cork growing beet?

The Deputy has already said that six times.

He could not say it too often.

The thing is outrageous and should be driven into the heads of Deputy MacDermot and other Deputies like him who after all pretend to have some sense of responsibility. The sooner and the oftener this thing is driven home to them the better.

"We are not going to grow beet in Cork County because we do not like the colour of the shirts worn by the men in the beet factory; there are not enough Blue Shirts in the factory to satisfy us."

And then they talk about fair play in employment and the challenge that unless 100 men out of their organisation are employed in the factory they will order their people not to grow beet. That is what Mr. E.J. Cussen, the leader of the Party in Cork County, tells us. These were the orders sent by Mr. Cussen to the manager of the Mallow Beet Factory. Then they come in here and talk about unemployment.

I am very glad anyway that we have provided unemployment assistance because those old lads who came along and cut down the 5/- a week they pay their men to 2/6 a week will not get them now for 2/6. They will have to come up a bit in the wages. We have definitely decided that no man is to be allowed die of starvation in this country. If Deputies opposite would cease their antics and try to give a bit of assistance in tackling the unemployment problem they would be doing better work than they are doing. If they had co-operated we would have no unemployment and we could settle the problem. I make a special appeal to Deputy MacDermot. If he goes over into the Department of Industry and Commerce and has a chat with the Minister for half an hour he would be shown the list of factories in his own constituency that he can start. These will relieve unemployment and then let him dig into his handbag, pull out some of the dough he has there and invest it.

I was beginning to wonder whether or not we were discussing the motion on the Order Paper relating to unemployment. I do not intend to talk about blue shirts, or brown shirts or black shirts. I intend to address myself as closely as possible to the motion before the House.

Hear, hear.

Deputy Corry has said hear, hear. I would suggest that the speech to which we have just listened has been directed more at members of the Opposition than to the motion on the Order Paper. That motion on the Order Paper reads:

"That in view of the continued widespread unemployment the Dáil instructs the Executive Council to make available forthwith sufficient money to permit of the carrying out of large scale schemes of public works, so as to relieve the distress caused by unemployment."

We heard, during the course of the debate, a tirade against Blue Shirts, and against Deputy MacDermot; we have heard abuse of Deputy Bennett. I am at a loss to know whether Deputy Corry was supporting this motion or not.

I am glad the Government saw fit to devote an hour or an hour-and-a-half to discussing this important motion. Perhaps the reason is the urge that was given during the week by Deputy Morrissey. I shall now proceed to deal with the motion without further comment on what previous speakers thought fit to say on the matter. When we read in the Press speeches made by the Minister for Industry and Commerce, in which he talks of the progress made in industry by the way of the establishment of new factories, and the creating of employment and also listening to the speeches that we heard to-day from the Government Benches, one would imagine that we were living in Paradise, and that there was no such thing as unemployment in the country. On the other hand, we find the figures for unemployment are going up, not relying on statements made by the man in the street, or on statements made by the enemies of the Government, or on statements made by private Deputies in this House, but on statements which emanate from the Minister's own Department and which give the lie absolutely to the statements made in the country. We are told one day that unemployment is decreasing. On the following day, in the Press, we read that there is an increase in unemployment according to the latest figures available in the Department of Industry and Commerce. Which of these statements are we to believe? Are we to believe the verbal statements made by the Minister for Industry and Commerce in that connection or are we to accept the increased figures of unemployment from official sources in his own Department? That is one of the questions I would like the Minister to deal with when he again takes part in this debate. We had the figure quoted in the House some time ago, to which publicity was given, that there was something like 88,000 people unemployed. Surely after that we were surprised to hear that the official figure was something over the 100,000 mark. I would like some enlightenment upon that aspect of the case. Personally, I do not express any surprise at the rising figures of unemployment in this country, because of the great amount of instability that exists. That instability is not due to the things we are told about here, such as the growth of the Blue Shirt movement, or anything of that kind. In my view the cause is far more serious than that. The instability which has resulted in this country, and has of course as its corollary increased unemployment, must be sought for at the top. That instability is brought about mainly by the wild statements made by Government spokesmen. Reference has been made to cross-road speeches. Did anyone ever hear such a cross-road speech made in this or any other Parliament as the one we heard a while ago here? These are the kind of unfounded statements that are made by Fianna Fáil spokesmen at cross-roads and it is these statements that have led to increased unemployment in the country.

We had an example recently of the instability, the uncertainty and uneasiness that prevailed in the country, expressed in the failure of the last National Loan. If any evidence were required there is abundant proof in that item alone to show that persons who have money to invest are slow to put it into national security when there is no sign of stability in those who are attempting to administer the affairs of the State. One of the disquieting things that occurred in the last few months in this country was the establishment of another army. All this has been done to gratify the ambition of the Minister for Defence who has long-ambitioned to have a private army of his very own. Now he has got it at considerable expense to the country. Money which could be devoted to constructive efforts and works of economic value to the country, which would go a long way to help at least in the solution of this unemployment problem, is to be spent on this army. I do not pretend for one moment—I would not be dishonest enough to pretend—that unemployment is confined to this country. We all know that it is a world problem and not merely an Irish problem. We all know that great and strained and sustained efforts are made in every country to attempt to alleviate this problem, but so far only with partial success. The President speaking in this House on the 2nd April, 1932, as reported in volume 41, column 905, of the official Debates, on a motion which dealt with the immediate needs of the unemployed and which was put down in the names of Deputy Morrissey and myself said:

"Looking around the world, and trying to understand what were the causes of unemployment in different countries, I came to the conclusion that there was less reason for unemployment in this country than in any country of which I know."

That is the President's own statement. I am not going to pin him to every word and comma of that statement, but let us take that statement in the way the English language is usually understood and emerging from that statement is the fact, at any rate, that the President believes that the problem of unemployment would be more easily solved in this country than in any other country of which he knows. I move the adjournment of the debate.

Debate adjourned to Wednesday, 2nd May, 1934.
The Dáil adjourned at 2 p.m. until Tuesday, 1st May, at 3 p.m.