EST. 1903 - Presenting global influential leaders from business, labour, education & government through events
Foster, Hon. Sir George
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A few remarks with reference to the war which is at present raging, and commerce as it is affected by the war. Disclaiming the idea that war is a promoter of commerce. War as an enemy of commerce. Denying the German contention that they have been forced into this war because of Britain's jealousy of German progress in industry and commerce, and that the war was forced upon them by Great Britain for the purpose of destroying Germany's trade. Not disposed after the experience of the last eight months to put very much reliance on the statements of the German government as excuses for their action in the war, or as causes of the war itself. Looking at the last 35 years and finding that Great Britain has dealt in a particularly generous way with the commercial development of Germany. Britain as a "good sport"; Germany as a "bad sport." Commerce acting quietly, unlike war upon which the attention of the world is riveted. Commerce reading more like a romance. Commerce depending absolutely upon production, in turn stimulated by demand. What commerce is. The modern nature of commerce. Transportation as the mechanism of modern commerce. The mechanism of transport today as opposed to 3-4,000 years ago. Broadly speaking, the two kinds of production, beneficent production being illustrated by farmers' work, the other called by the speaker a maleficent production. An explication. The destructive nature of war. Hoping that we are working towards a time of no war. "In all production it is the purpose which hallows the activity." The tremendous effect upon commerce that the present war is having, and to what that is due. The sensitivity of commerce to the effects of war. The wheels of commerce stopping when this war broke out. The mechanism of commerce absolutely paralysed in all its parts, with illustrative examples. Germany's present loss, and what she is likely to lose. Germany's treatment of Belgium and the far-reaching consequences of such treatment. A nation's inability to go far in the great international race if the feelings engendered by such triumphs of atrocity as that are widespread, and are amongst the deepest and strongest held in the human heart. The resources of the world that will be called upon for reconstruction. Canada's opportunity as a fair one. Canada's right to consider her resources, to organise her forces, and to systematise them so that her products and her industries may find their way to these desolated spots with credit and profit to herself and also as contributing to the great work of world-building.