My board feel that we could not ask the shareholders to affirm the agreement in its present precise form.
The government are askecl to consent to something which is described as being utterly immaterial in order to allay ' any possible apprehensions of our shareholders.' Have the people of Canada sunk so low, is the credit of Canada so fallen that we are *compelled on bended knee to give concession after concession of enormous value simply, in the words of the president of the Grand Trunk Railway Company, to allay the apprehensions of his shareholders ? Why Sir, would it not have been millions of dollars in the pockets of the people of this country if we had sent the right hon. leader of the government, the hon. Minister of Finance and also the hon. member for Annapolis over to the old country and paid their expenses that they might there meet the shareholders of the Grand Trunk Railway Company and with the rosy pictures they would draw of the glorious land through which this line is to run, of the happy hunting ground and unbounded wealth of these regions, allay the apprehensions of the Grand Trunk shareholders rather than allay them by the frightfully expensive mode that has been adopted by the government in consenting to the concessions now before the House ? It is perhaps not out of place to call attention to the fact, that, having before us the report of the directors of the Grand Trunk Railway Company, having before us the original contract signed by the leading men of the company, we are able to form a very fair idea who these people would be on the board of directors who had to be satisfied before this matter could be brought before the shareholders. It was not the president, Sir Charles Rivers-Wil-son, who signed the contract; he was satisfied. It -was not Lord Welby who signed the contract; he was satisfied. It was not John 'A. Glutton-Brock who signed the contract; he was satisfied. It was not Mr. Joseph Price, it was not Mr. Alfred W. Smithers. it was not the general manager, Mr. Charles M. Hays, it was not Mr. Frank W. Morse, the assistant vice-president, it was not Mr. John Bell, the counsel of the company, it was not Mr. Win. Wainwright, the controller, because they were all satisfied. Every man on the board of the Grand Trunk Railway Company who had a practical knowledge of finance, every man who had a practical knowledge of the operations of the Grand Trunk Railway Company was perfectly^ satisfied with the contract save one man, because, by reference to the report Of the meeting of shareholders, we find one single director only who was dissatisfied, Mr. Allen, and he continued dissatisfied and did not come in even when the amended contract was introduced and when the president of the company had expressed himself as satisfied that if Mr. Allen could