Sivut kuvina
[ocr errors]

thel 5th Jan. 1823, 29,286,000l.; Interest and Management of and on the 5th January, 1826,

the Funded Debt .£.27,117,186

Interest of Exchequer Defi27,946,000l. being a reduction in

ciency Bills..

'50,000 the annual charge of the whole Civil List, &c. .... 2,065,000 debt of 1,339,000l., in three years. Half-pay Annuity

2,800,000 It was of no consequence in what Sinking Fund.. 5,585,235 manner this reduction of charge

Permanent Charge ..£.37,617,421 was effected, whether by the operation of the sinking fund, or by the Committee of Supply were

The Annual Votes this year in some other means; the fact of the

as follows:reduction was certain; and it was by the reduction of the charge


£7,747,000 Navy

6,135,000 that we ought to estimate, if we


1,754,000 wished to estimate it correctly, the Miscellaneous

2,225,000 reduction of the burden of the Interest of Exchequer Bills 850,000 debt. “If, therefore," said the

Annual Votes right hon. gentleman, “ while the


Add the Permanent people of this country have had


37,617,421 their burdens thus diminished, The whole Expenses of it every - thing has been done by the Year

£.56,328,421 government and the legislature, The Revenue calculated on for which the honour, the security, the purpose of meeting this expenand the advantage of the country diture was composed of the followrequired ; if we have been enabled ing items :extensively to increase the means First, a small itein of a surof religious worship; if we have plus of 1825, in the Sink added to the roads, the bridges, the

ing Fund now available .. £.167,000

The Customs and Excise 37,446,000 harbours, of the kingdom ; if we


7,400,000 have spared something to the pro- Taxes

4,800,000 motion of science and the arts; and Post Office

1,550,000 if, during the last three years, we


1,360,000 bave reduced the taxation of the country eight millions, and have Add the payments to the

£:52,723,000 diminished the expense of the debt Trustees of Half-pay and above a million, we have at least Pensions

4,320,000 done something, and may boldly face our constituents in whatever


Deduct the Expenditure 56,328,421 part of the country, and at what- Surplus for Parliament to ever, time we may be called upon deal with as they may to appeal to them.”

thiuk fit

£.714,579 -1 With resources this increasing

The estimate of the revenue for hunder diminished taxation, and a the current year, considering the reduced rate of expenditure, he unfortunate state in which manustated, as follows, the proposed ex- factures and commerce had been penditure of the present year, and placed, might be considered as too the funds by which it was to be met. high, but it was taken upon the Under the first head were many following grounds:~The Customs expenses of a permanent nature, and Excise yielded,

in 1825, which the House, had already 37,546,000l. ; but in that year sanctioned by its vote, as follows:- their amount had been diminished

by different causes, which, during below their proceeds in the last the present year, would not be in year, and due allowance made for operation. Thus, in 1825, no less other' unavoidable deficiencies. a sum than 1,050,0001. of duties, There' would be a deficiency of had been refunded to dealers in 350,0001. arising from the reduce wine

upon the stock in their pos- tion of taxes in 1825, and a defi? session. In consequence, likewise, ciency of about 1,300,0001., in the of the alterations in the system of excise, produced by diminished bounties which had been effected consumption. Allowance for all during the preceding session, there this had been made in the es would this year be a reduction of timates; and the stamps, the post50,0001

. Another, and an unfore- office, and the assessed taxes, had seen diminution of the revenue all been taken at lower rates than had arisen from an oversight in they had yielded last year, the the new acts for simplifying the stamps being estimated at 48,0001., whole system of the customs. It the post office at 46,000l., and the had been intended that the duty assessed taxes at 190,0001., less on tobacco should continue to be than had been received from them four shillings, the rate at which it in 1825. On the other hand the stood in the beginning of the year; miscellaneous items had increased. but by some mischance, scarcely A sum of 100,000l. was due from avoidable where such a mass of Holland, under a treaty with that seattered and minute regulations government, and ought to have were to be dealt with, the unin- been paid in 1825. It had not tentional but practical effect of the been paid; but, having been now new acts had been, that one shil- remitted, it would go to the serling of the duty had lapsed ; and vice of the current year. About the duty having thus been, for the 108,000l. would be received from latter half of the year, only three lotteries; for, although the last shillings, instead of four shillings, lottery had been contracted for that 'branch of the revenue fell two or three years ago, its exista 450,000l. short of what it would ence was protracted, in consequence otherwise have yielded. These of the usual course of conducting deductions from the revenue of lotteries, for two or three years 1825 exceeded a million and a half; after they had been contracted for. yet, as they could have no place in consequence of an arrangement during the present year, they with the East-India company, that ought to be added the corporation had become bound to 37,546,0001. received indepen- pay 60,000l. in consideration of an dently of them in the preceding increase of our naval force for the year; and the customs and excise security of their possessions. The would present, for 1826, a revenue new silver coinage for Ireland had of 39,096,000/. But as, in the cost the country last year 500,000l.: present state of the country, still in the present year the old coin labouring under the pressure would come back, and be available which it had felt for so many for the public service, to the months, it would be unwise and amount it was calculated, of about improvident to calculate a 400,000). With these additions to revenue equally large with that of the usnal revenue, making every 1825, all the items had been taken allowance for the probable depres


amounted to 3,135,000 lbs., and, notions, or theoretical reasonings, during the following three quarters they had availed themselves of the of that year, ending on 10th Oc- best attainable evidence on the tober, to no less than 3,431,122 lbs., subject. Foreign merchants, who being more than the importation had both gone to France, and coine of the whole preceding year. The to this country to purchase goods, importation again, for the year and who, of course, were only inending 5th January, 1824, had terested to procure them on the been only 2,512,164 lbs. Nay, so best terms, declared, that the far was this spirit carried, that, in difference of price between goods February, 1825, there appeared in of equal quality, bought in France a Macclesfield newspaper, an adand England, was not more than vertisement to the following effect: 20, or 25 per cent. Others had To the overseers of the poor, stated that the difference did not and to families desirous of settling exceed 20 per cent, and, in articles in Macclesfield. Wanted between of silk hosiery, they would give 4,000 and 5,000 persons, between the preference to the English mathe

ages of seven and twenty-one nufacture both in quality and years.' Thus the manufacturers cheapness. On that occasion, the themselves held out the assurance manufacturers themselves had exof the trade being about to become pressed their conviction, that, with so prosperous, as to suggest a fa- proper guards, they could compete vourable opportunity for families successfully against the continent; to settle, and for the overseers of and those guards they explained the poor to put out parish ap- to be, a reduction of the duty on prentices. After such efforts to the raw material, and a protecting induce so many young persons to duty of 15 per cent. The former flock into Macclesfield, was it measure had been adopted ; and in wonderful that it should have been regard to the latter, the protecting soon found out that all this was duty had been fixed, not at 15 per extravagant, and most imprudent cent, but at 30 per cent. The maspeculation, which speedily led to nufacturers had gotten more than its usual consequences ? or that the they asked, and no clamour could silk manufacture should not have be more unjust or contradictory been found to be an exception to than that which was now raised. the re-action and difficulty which In regard to the alleged infehad been felt so severely by every riority of England to France, in other branch of trade.

some parts of the requisite maIt was true that the bill of 1824 chinery, the fact, if it existed, proceeded upon the idea that a was a new proof of the necessity duty of 30 per cent on foreign silks of never returning to the system would afford suficient protection of entire prohibition. From what to the home manufacturer; and it cause could that inferiority arise was likewise true that this idea in a country like this, in which was correct. The committee of every other branch of machinery the House of Lords had not pro- had been carried to the highest ceeded without the most cautious perfection? It could only be acinvestigation ; instead of acting counted for by that system of proprecipitately, or founding their hibition, which, if it did not prerecommendations on pre-conceived vent, certainly did not encourage


the application of learning and in- It would be an act of injustice to genuity to this branch of industry. the silk-weavers and their employa Why did the silk trade not enjoyers to excite in them fallacious the same advantages of machinery hopes by seeming to yield to their as the cotton-manufacture? because expectations ; and, as the House the trade was not open. Hence evidently neither wished nor inhad arisen the long unimproved tended, that government should continuance of the old defective abandon the more liberal princilooms which were used in Covena ples which had now been adopted as try. But even already, amid all the basis of the commercial policy of that had been said of the hopeless- the country, the wiser and more ness of endeavouring to meet con. humane course was, by putting tinental competition, this mischief a negative on the motion, to close was disappearing, and only the the discussion for ever. * necessity of proper exertion would ever make it disappear. Already

* In the course of the debate, Mr. power looms had been erected in Huskisson mentioned the following cirManchester, each of which, with less jealousies entertained of foreign

cumstance, as illustrative of the ground. the attendance of one woman at manufactures. “A French manufacturer, 14s. a week, produced 108 yards of the name of de Pouillet, came over weekly. This made the cost of to England, established his looms, and the manufacture not more than British manufacturers openly stated,

commenced business. Forthwith the 31d. a yard, while the cost of the that this establishment was nothing but same species of article in France cover for smuggling foreign goods was 7d. a yard.

into the country. My right hon. friend There being, therefore, no reason

(Mr. Grant) on being applied to, sent in principle or in fact, why the trial. He heard the charges advanced

for the parties, and put them upon their House should retrace its steps and by the British manufacturers, and then return to the former system of he had the opposite party called in, universal prohibition, still less And what did this indignant foreigner could any good be obtained by foreigner, who had come over to this

say in reply to those charges that farther delay, which was confess- country, where he had embarked and edly the only object of the motion. risked a large capital, from the knowTwo years had originally been ledge that here industry and talent allowed; and the experience of immediate reply

were certain to be encouraged ? His


66 send for my these two years shewed sufficiently books, you shall see them, and they what might be expected from shall be delivered to you for examinafarther procrastination.

His books were accordingly had been employed, not in

brought, and his whole transactions

preparation, the purpose for which the revenue by this means ascertained

were minutely looked into. The officers of they were granted, but in im- the persons employed by him; they provident speculation. Much time went to the houses in which his men was yet to come, which, if properly were at work, and they found them employed, might be converted to they had been described in his books,

man for man, employed exactly as the best purposes ; while, if further and upon the very pieces of silk that time were granted, the same argu were there set down. But the inquiry, ments would be again used, and a

in order to satisfy the British manusimilar attempt would be again made facturers, was prosecuted still farther.

Those manufacturers themselves were to postpone the execution of the called upon to select from among them measure to a still more distant day. those persons who had most skill and

They tion."

The motion was negatived by a latter were burthened with a higher majority of 222 to 40.

duty. For, said they, in conseThe ship owners, and others quence of the greater price of all connected with the shipping inter- the labour and materials used, the ests, who believed themselves to rate of ship-building is nearly be affected by the late alterations double of what it is in most foreign in the navigation laws, complained, countries, the cost of navigation, equally with the silk-manufactuó when the ship has been built, is rers, of the mischievous

much higher, because the wages

of ces of innovation. They com seamen, and the price of the stores plained particularly of the system and victuals for the seamen, are which had been adopted of remov much higher here than they are ing discriminating duties, and al- abroad. Without a countervailing lowing articles of merchandize to duty, therefore, laid upon their be imported in foreign vessels, foreign rivals, they were not put under the same burthens as if on a fair ground of competition they had been imported in against these rivals. In support of British bottoms, on condition of these views they asserted, that, reciprocity in regard to ourselves. during the last four years, the They contended in numerous pe- tonnage of the foreign shipping titions to parliament, that such a entering our ports, had trebled, reciprocal removal of discriminat- while our own trade was declining: ing duties was ruinous to British that the foreign tonnage entering shipping; because the British and the port of London, during the the foreign owner could never be last three years, had doubled ; put upon an equality, unless the that, at this moment, nine-tenths

of the shipping coming into the judgment as to the difference between port of Liverpool were American ; foreign and home manufactured silk, and that, unless, therefore, it and the individuals so selected, were directed to go and look over the hun

were intended that our navy dreds of pieces of silk in the warehouse should dwindle into insignificance, of the foreign manufacturer, and to it was necessary to lighten the take from among those hundreds, all burthens of the shipping interthe pieces of which they had no doubt est, and enable it to compete with as to their being manufactured abroad, the shipping interest of foreign so as to establish beyond all question, the guilt or the innocence of the indi- countries. vidual accused. This was accordingly The petitioners and their adhedone, and a report was made, that the rents in parliament, repeated these persons appointed had selected thirty- doctrines and assertions on every seven pieces of silk out of the many hundreds examined by them, of which opportunity; but, owing perhaps they had made seizure as contraband to the decided approbation which goods. What was then done by the the House of Commons had given foreign manufacturer ? from Manchester, and from Spitalfields, ment on the debate concerning the

He brought to the principles of the governthe very men who had made every one of those thirty-seven pieces; and it was silk trade, no attempt was made to proved upon oath, to the entire confu- bring them formally under the sion of the accusers, that every piece notice of the legislature. Mr. Hus. had been manufactured either in Man- kisson, however, to whose departchester or Spitalfields. The consequence was, a full and complete acquittal ment, as President of the Board of of the foreigner.

Trade, the subject belonged, did

« EdellinenJatka »