A B C D E F
G H I J K L M 

Total read books on site:
more than 10 000

You can read its for free!


Text on one page: Few Medium Many
Chalmers, and others, were debating whether the quantity
of money in England was greater or less than at the Revolution, the
circumstance was not adverted to, that since the Revolution, there
cannot have been less than four hundred millions sterling imported into
Europe; and therefore the quantity in England ought at least to have
been four times greater than it was at the Revolution, to be on a
proportion with Europe. What England is now doing by paper, is what she
would have been able to do by solid money, if gold and silver had come
into the nation in the proportion it ought, or had not been sent out;
and she is endeavouring to restore by paper, the balance she has lost by
money. It is certain, that the gold and silver which arrive annually
in the register-ships to Spain and Portugal, do not remain in those
countries. Taking the value half in gold and half in silver, it is about
four hundred tons annually; and from the number of ships and galloons
employed in the trade of bringing those metals from South-America to
Portugal and Spain, the quantity sufficiently proves itself, without
referring to the registers.

In the situation England now is, it is impossible she can increase in
money. High taxes not only lessen the property of the individuals, but
they lessen also the money capital of the nation, by inducing smuggling,
which can only be carried on by gold and silver. By the politics which
the British Government have carried on with the Inland Powers of Germany
and the Continent, it has made an enemy of all the Maritime Powers, and
is therefore obliged to keep up a large navy; but though the navy is
built in England, the naval stores must be purchased from abroad, and
that from countries where the greatest part must be paid for in gold
and silver. Some fallacious rumours have been set afloat in England to
induce a belief in money, and, among others, that of the French refugees
bringing great quantities. The idea is ridiculous. The general part of
the money in France is silver; and it would take upwards of twenty of
the largest broad wheel wagons, with ten horses each, to remove one
million sterling of silver. Is it then to be supposed, that a few people
fleeing on horse-back or in post-chaises, in a secret manner, and having
the French Custom-House to pass, and the sea to cross, could bring even
a sufficiency for their own expenses?

When millions of money are spoken of, it should be recollected, that
such sums can only accumulate in a country by slow degrees, and a long
procession of time. The most frugal system that England could now adopt,
would not recover in a century the balance she has lost in money since
the commencement of the Hanover succession. She is seventy millions
behind France, and she must be in some considerable proportion behind
every country in Europe, because the returns of the English mint do not
show an increase of money, while the registers of Lisbon and Cadiz
show an European increase of between three and four hundred millions
sterling.]

[Footnote 16: That part of America which is generally called New-England,
including New-Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode-Island, and Connecticut,
is peopled chiefly by English descendants. In the state of New-York
about half are Dutch, the rest English, Scotch, and Irish. In
New-jersey, a mixture of English and Dutch, with some Scotch and Irish.
In Pennsylvania about one third are English, another Germans, and
the remainder Scotch and Irish, with some Swedes. The States to the
southward have a greater proportion of English than the middle States,
but in all of them there is a mixture; and besides those enumerated,
there are a considerable number of French, and some few of all the
European nations, lying on the coast. The most numerous religious
denomination are the Presbyterians; but no one sect is established above
another, and all men are equally citizens.]

[Footnote 17: For a character of aristocracy, the reader is referred to Rights of
Man, Part I., starting at line number 1457.]

[Footnote 18: The whole amount of the assessed taxes of France, for the present
year, is three hundred millions of francs, which is twelve millions
and a half sterling; and the incidental taxes are estimated at three
millions, making in the whole fifteen millions and a half; which among
twenty-four millions of people, is not quite thirteen shillings per
head. France has lessened her taxes since the revolution, nearly nine
millions sterling annually. Before the revolution, the city of Paris
paid a duty of upwards of thirty per cent. on all articles brought into
the city. This tax was collected at the city gates. It was taken off on
the first of last May, and the gates taken down.]

[Footnote 19: What was called the livre rouge, or the red book, in France, was not
exactly similar to the Court Calendar in England; but it sufficiently
showed how a great part of the taxes was lavished.]

[Footnote 20: In England the improvements in agriculture, useful arts,
manufactures, and commerce, have been made in opposition to the genius
of its government, which is that of following precedents. It is from
the enterprise and industry of the individuals, and their numerous
associations, in which, tritely speaking, government is neither pillow
nor bolster, that these improvements have proceeded. No man thought
about government, or who was in, or who was out, when he was planning
or executing those things; and all he had to hope, with respect to
government, was, that it would let him alone. Three or four very silly
ministerial newspapers are continually offending against the spirit of
national improvement, by ascribing it to a minister. They may with as
much truth ascribe this book to a minister.]

[Footnote 21: With respect to the two houses, of which the English parliament is
composed, they appear to be effectually influenced into one, and, as a
legislature, to have no temper of its own. The minister, whoever he
at any time may be, touches it as with an opium wand, and it sleeps
obedience.

But if we look at the distinct abilities of the two houses, the
difference will appear so great, as to show the inconsistency of
placing power where there can be no certainty of the judgment to use
it. Wretched as the state of representation is in England, it is manhood
compared with what is called the house of Lords; and so little is this
nick-named house regarded, that the people scarcely enquire at any time
what it is doing. It appears also to be most under influence, and the
furthest removed from the general interest of the nation. In the debate
on engaging in the Russian and Turkish war, the majority in the house
of peers in favor of it was upwards of ninety, when in the other house,
which was more than double its numbers, the majority was sixty-three.]

The proceedings on Mr. Fox's bill, respecting the rights of juries,
merits also to be noticed. The persons called the peers were not the
objects of that bill. They are already in possession of more privileges
than that bill gave to others. They are their own jury, and if any one
of that house were prosecuted for a libel, he would not suffer, even
upon conviction, for the first offense. Such inequality in laws ought
not to exist in any country. The French constitution says, that the law
is the same to every individual, whether to Protect or to punish. All
are equal in its sight.]

[Footnote 22: As to the state of representation in England, it is too absurd to
be reasoned upon. Almost all the represented parts are decreasing
in population, and the unrepresented parts are increasing. A general
convention of the nation is necessary to take the whole form of
government into consideration.]

[Footnote 23: It is related that in the canton of Berne, in Switzerland, it has
been customary, from time immemorial, to keep a bear at the public
expense, and the people had been taught to believe that if they had not
a bear they should all be undone. It happened some years ago that the
bear, then in being, was taken sick, and died too suddenly to have his
place immediately supplied with another. During this interregnum the
people discovered that the corn grew, and the vintage flourished, and
the sun and moon continued to rise and set, and everything went on
the same as before, and taking courage from these circumstances, they
resolved not to keep any more bears; for, said they, "a bear is a very
voracious expensive animal, and we were obliged to pull out his claws,
lest he should hurt the citizens." The story of the bear of Berne was
related in some of the French newspapers, at the time of the flight of
Louis Xvi., and the application of it to monarchy could not be mistaken
in France; but it seems that the aristocracy of Berne applied it to
themselves, and have since prohibited the reading of French newspapers.]

[Footnote 24: It is scarcely possible to touch on any subject, that will not
suggest an allusion to some corruption in governments. The simile of
"fortifications," unfortunately involves with it a circumstance, which
is directly in point with the matter above alluded to.]

Among the numerous instances of abuse which have been acted or protected
by governments, ancient or modern, there is not a greater than that of
quartering a man and his heirs upon the public, to be maintained at its
expense.

Humanity dictates a provision for the poor; but by what right, moral or
political, does any government assume to say, that the person called
the Duke of Richmond, shall be maintained by the public? Yet, if
common report is true, not a beggar in London can purchase his wretched
pittance of coal, without paying towards the civil list of the Duke of
Richmond. Were the whole produce of this imposition but a shilling a
year, the iniquitous principle would be still the same; but when it
amounts, as it is said to do, to no less than twenty thousand pounds per
annum, the enormity is too serious to be permitted to remain. This is
one of the effects of monarchy and aristocracy.

In stating this case I am led by no personal dislike. Though I think
it mean in any man to live upon the public, the vice originates in the
government; and so general is it become, that whether the parties are in
the ministry or in the opposition, it makes no difference: they are sure
of the guarantee of each other.]

[Footnote 25: In America the increase of commerce is greater in proportion than in
England.



Pages: | Prev | | 1 | | 2 | | 3 | | 4 | | 5 | | 6 | | 7 | | 8 | | 9 | | 10 | | 11 | | 12 | | 13 | | 14 | | 15 | | 16 | | 17 | | 18 | | 19 | | 20 | | 21 | | 22 | | 23 | | 24 | | 25 | | 26 | | 27 | | 28 | | 29 | | 30 | | 31 | | 32 | | 33 | | 34 | | 35 | | 36 | | 37 | | 38 | | 39 | | 40 | | 41 | | 42 | | 43 | | 44 | | 45 | | 46 | | 47 | | 48 | | 49 | | 50 | | 51 | | 52 | | 53 | | 54 | | 55 | | 56 | | 57 | | 58 | | 59 | | 60 | | 61 | | 62 | | 63 | | 64 | | 65 | | 66 | | 67 | | 68 | | 69 | | 70 | | 71 | | 72 | | 73 | | 74 | | 75 | | 76 | | 77 | | 78 | | 79 | | 80 | | 81 | | 82 | | 83 | | 84 | | 85 | | 86 | | 87 | | 88 | | 89 | | 90 | | 91 | | 92 | | 93 | | 94 | | 95 | | 96 | | 97 | | 98 | | 99 | | 100 | | 101 | | 102 | | 103 | | 104 | | 105 | | 106 | | 107 | | 108 | | 109 | | 110 | | 111 | | 112 | | 113 | | 114 | | 115 | | 116 | | 117 | | 118 | | 119 | | 120 | | 121 | | 122 | | 123 | | 124 | | 125 | | 126 | | 127 | | 128 | | 129 | | 130 | | 131 | | 132 | | 133 | | 134 | | 135 | | 136 | | 137 | | 138 | | 139 | | 140 | | 141 | | 142 | | 143 | | 144 | | 145 | | 146 | | 147 | | 148 | | 149 | | 150 | | 151 | | 152 | | 153 | | 154 | | 155 | | 156 | | 157 | | 158 | | 159 | | 160 | | 161 | | 162 | | 163 | | 164 | | 165 | | 166 | | 167 | | 168 | | 169 | | 170 | | 171 | | 172 | | 173 | | 174 | | 175 | | 176 | | 177 | | 178 | | 179 | | 180 | | 181 | | 182 | | 183 | | 184 | | 185 | | 186 | | 187 | | 188 | | 189 | | 190 | | 191 | | 192 | | 193 | | 194 | | 195 | | 196 | | 197 | | 198 | | 199 | | 200 | | 201 | | 202 | | 203 | | 204 | | 205 | | 206 | | 207 | | 208 | | 209 | | 210 | | 211 | | 212 | | 213 | | 214 | | 215 | | 216 | | 217 | | 218 | | 219 | | 220 | | 221 | | 222 | | 223 | | 224 | | 225 | | 226 | | 227 | | 228 | | 229 | | 230 | | 231 | | Next |

N O P Q R S T
U V W X Y Z 

Your last read book:

You dont read books at this site.