Letter from A.S. Trotter to Prof. F.R. Scott (25 February 1936)

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Date: 1936-02-25
By: A.S. Trotter
Citation: Letter from A.S. Trotter to Prof. F.R. Scott (25 February 1936).
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1402 Robson St., Vancouver, B.C.
Feb. 25th/26.

Prof. J.R. Scott,
Faculty of Law,
McGill University,
Montreal, Que.

Dear Prof. Scott:-

Following my letters of Jan’y 1st and 22nd, and yours to me of the 14th January, I am submitting you the following further questions for the kind consideration of yourself and friends.

I. The Policy Committee of the Provincial Planning Commission forwarded me the following memorandum some days ago:

“FINANCE. In our opinion the Committee on Finance must
“suggest two alternate plans of procedure:
“(a) A financial plan to conform with our present con-
“stitutional status within Confederation, based on the refunding
“of debt, the establishment of a Provincial Bank and broad
“(b) A plan for independent issuance of credit within the
“Province, in the event that Federal co-operation is refused.
“The details of this second plan need not necessarily be made

As to clause (a) above: do you consider the ordinary refunding plan as of any practical value for the financing of a C.C.F. provincial government? Do you onsider the establishment of a Provincial Bank by a C.C.F. provincial government as an advisable procedure? I would say ‘no’ to both.

As to clause (b) above: what is your suggestion as a plan for using the Social Credit of the Province? I feel that we can devise a legal plan for conducting the public business and the industrial life generally of the province with the use of the province’s credit. However, I may be incorrect in this. I note legal authorities differ on the point.

2. At the present time socialists are in a minority on the Finance Committee which presents its own problems. A strong group is pressing for the adoption of a modified form of the Gesell system. I am enclosing you herewith a summary of the plan of Mr. Fred. Wilson, who is the leader of this school on the Committee. Please note his argument on the right of the Province to set up this monetary system. I am afraid Mr. Wilson’s argument won’t get around the B.N.A. Act, even were it desirable to adopt the idea of a diminsihing-value currency. What is your opinion?

[Page 2]

A review unfavorable to that excellent work, “Social Planning for Canada” appeared some days ago in The B.C. Clarion, from the pen of a prominent local Marxian. If it has been brought to your notice I would like you to know that it has been replied to by Rev. Robt. Connell, the C.C.F. House Leader in B.C.; also that the Planning Commission is not officially in sympathy with the said Marxian criticism. So far as I have learned, the book has been very favorably received in B.C. I myself have a copy, and have found it attractively instructive.

I trust that you and Profs. Marsh and Forsey will shortly have found time to prepare and forward your opinions on my earlier conundrums! Thanking you again for your kind co-operation I am

Yours in the Cause,

A.S. Trotter
Chrmn. Finance Committee,
Planning Commission, C.C.F. (B.C.)

I encl.

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