Imperial Reorganization
Publication
The Empire Club of Canada Addresses (Toronto, Canada), 30 Mar 1916, p. 152-165
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Imperial Reorganization


Not forgetting the pioneer federationists; who they were. A statement that the speaker was not one of the pioneer advocates of imperial federation; that he wants a full citizenship in this country or some other country; that he is not contented with the relation under which in all the imperial and foreign affairs of the Empire to which we belong he has no more voice and no more authority than has an American who lives at Washington; that he was an early advocate of Canadian independence. Why the speaker has become an advocate of Imperial federation. Words and thoughts from several statesmen on Imperial reorganization. Denial that the advocate of federation is under any obligation to give a plan complete in every detail; that it would be and unwise and stupid thing to do; why that is so. Recalling how we set about the organization of Canada's Confederation, and the circumstances for Australia and for South Africa. A comment about a solution for Ireland's troubles. Historical arguments against confederations. A look at Canada's successful Confederation. The characteristics of an Imperial Federation with which the speaker would not be happy. Conditions that he would like to see, and why. Finally demonstrated that the people of Canada will bear a full share of the Imperial burden; all of the burdens that can come with Imperial federation but as yet we have not obtained the authority which Imperial federation would give to us. A response to the criticism that under federation we would sacrifice Canadian autonomy. A consideration of whether we could have remained outside the war and remained inside the British Empire. Knowing now, once and for all, that when Great Britain is attacked Canada is attacked. Urging a regularization of the Imperial relations and combining the energies and resources of this Empire for its own security, for its own strength and in order to enhance its powers to preserve peace and insure the welfare of others. Many of the faults and prejudices which have been cherished for generations burned up in the fire of this war. Response to the criticism that a system of federation necessarily destroys individuality in British communities. Forces at work that will compel federation before we are very much older. The prospects federation opens to Canada. The Dominions, once considered a burden to the British Empire, now a source of strength and security. The task of reconstruction to be even greater than the problem of this war.