Canada: THE PRIME MINISTRY: Into the Shadows

For his last parliamentary appearance as Canada's Prime Minister, William Lyon Mackenzie King had put on a black suit, a crisp white shirt, a grey tie with pearl stickpin. Hardly anyone noticed him as he slipped into his chair in the green House of Commons chamber. Only 47 of the 245 members were at their desks. The rest had already left for their summer holidays.

The fourth session of Canada's 20th Parliament had been a bore from the start. Its chief issues: the shortage of U.S. dollars, freight-rate increases, the $2,175,000,000 budget. All had been handled the easy way, by voting...

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