« EdellinenJatka »
rejection of the petition at Brighton was ministers at foreign courts, and some at all the cause of these lamentable other establishments necessary to the occurrences ; but I do believe, and most good government of the country, there firmly believe, that if the petition had must be a revenue. The pensions, and been graciously received, and if only a other things of that sort, the standing civil word had been uttered to JOSEPH army, and all its monstrous expenses ; Mason, there would have been no vio- the taxing establishments : all these my lences in that part of Hampshire. It is propositions sweep away.
But they surprising with what rapidity intelli- leave a powerful navy to be provided for, gence flies from one end to the other of and also the expenses belonging to the a thinly-settled county. The rejection King and his court. They give him the of this petition was heard of, in every absolute control over his parks, gardens, part of Hampshire, in the course of three and palaces; and in speaking of these days; and, of course, a gracious recep- latter, one would wonder what he could tion of it would have been heard of in the do with them all ; and I dare say people same space of time; and it is possible, in general are afraid that they must be at any rate, that instead of a county the rotting and mouldering into decay; for people of which must be brooding over though an abundance of money is granted feelings which must suggest themselves for the keeping them up, and keeping to every intelligent mind, this might them in good order, still, as he never have been a county wholly unconscious lives at Hampton-court or Kensington, of any such feelings.
for instance, the walls must become This is an instance, and only one out damp, and the place not fit to live in. of ten thousand, of cutting off all direct if you were to go to those palaces you communication between the King and would be most agreeably disappointed; his people: the measures that I recom- for they are always full of most excelmend will restore that communication. lent company; and you would see brassSoon after I returned from America, in plates on the doors of the suits of apartthe year 1800, being at Ascot-heath ments, informing you that this lord, that races, what was my astonishment to see lady, this honourable miss, and that the then King having in the race-box honourable gentleman, were the inhatwo notorious police-officers, one on his bitants of the place; and at Kensingright-hand and one on his left, and ton-palace you would see, amongst standing nearer his person than anybody others, the name of that Mr. CROKER, else! It is useless to comment on such who now so boldly arraigns the Minisa fact : it speaks for itself; and no one ters for their intention to make a reform who has any wish to see the kingly of the Parliament ! I dare say, that if government maintained, can fail to desire it were proposed to put these people to see an end to a system that could out of the palaces, they would insist possibly render such precautions neces- upon it that they had a “i vested” right şary. I may deceive myself ; I may of possession ; and if the King himself be a bad judge of the matter; but, ac- were to think proper to go in to look at cording to my judgment, the way to the apartments, it would excite surprise cause the King to be held in honour by in nobody that knows them, if they all his subjects, and to receive from were to regard him as a trespasser, and them a willing obedience, is to place ask him what the devil he was doing him in the situation described in the there. Where there is a vesting there can proposition, the measures pointed out be a divesting ; and I should have little in which I have been endeavouring to hope of a reformed Parliament, that
should sit a month without sending these But, gentlemen, in order to have the gentry to hire lodgings for themselves, means of defraying the expense of a and restoring the King to the possession navy, such as I have described, and to of his own palaces.* have at the same time a sufficiency to meet the expenses occasioned by the the inhabitauts of Manchester, whose name is
There is a personage, particularly dear to king, the officers of state, the judges Henry ADD!ngton, and whose title is Lord
To return to the expenses of the coun-protected and justice to be done, is raised try, we must first observe, though it in the county ; but then it is expended seems to be always overlooked, that the in the county, as it ought to be, and not country governs itself, and pays for its carried away out of it, to be expended in own government, wholly independently London, in Paris, or in Rome. of the government up at London. This What, then, is required to support the part of the institutions of the country, kingly government? It would be quite still exists in form at any rate. Each ample to leave at the sole disposal of the county has a complete government in King, about one hundred or one hundred itself; it has a lord-lieutenant, a sheriff, and fifty thousand pounds a year ; quite justices of the peace, and all inferior sufficient to allow three hundred thouofficers; it has a militia, when the posse sand pounds more for officers of state, of the sheriff is found insufficient for the judges, ambassadors, and contingent ex. purpose of keeping the peace. It pro- penses appertaining to this general gois vides for all these by a tax called the vernment; for as to colonies, it is mere
county-rate. It has no need of any in- hypocrisy, if not perfidy, to pretend that terference of the Government up in it can be beneficial to hold a colony that London, except that it wants the King calls upon the nation for one single to appoint its sheriff and its justices and farthing of expense, beyond that which its lord-lieutenant; to give his commis- is incurred by keeping up a navy to sions to the officers of its militia, and to protect those colonies against the hostisend his judges twice a year, to cause (lity of foreign states. The whole of the justice to be executed, and to decide, in navy, during the last peace, cost little conjunction with the juries, on matters more than a million of pounds sterling relative to the differences between man a year. Let it now cost three millions and man. The counties pay, and pay and a half, and then it would bring the well, for the governing of themselves, whole expenditure of the kingdom, exjust as the several States of America do; clusive of the government of the counand this one county of Lancaster pays ties, down to four millions a year, or to more for this purpose than any four or five at the very utmost. I defy any man five of the Ainerican States. When the to point out the necessity of any ex. tax-eaters tell us, therefore, and when penditure beyond this. The whole of good foolish people adopt the tale, that the government expenses of the United Government must be supported, the pro- States; the general government, with per answer is, that the Government is its army, navy, ambassadors, custom, supported in the counties, and in the house officers, and all put together ; and several cities and towns; but what they adding thereto the government expenses mean by Government are, the fund- of the twenty States, of which the Union holders, the dead-weight, the pensioners, now consists : all these put together do and sinecure-people, the haunters of the not amount to three millions of pounds club-houses, and all the swarms of idlers sterling a year. Why should we want that devour the substance of the nation. more ; and if we do not want more, The county-rate, that is to say, the why should we raise more? money that is raised to support the Go However, I am for making a large vernment in the county, to keep peace provision for the navy, because I would and order, and to cause property to be have the sailors well paid, and have
them able and faithful. We have now Viscount SIDMOUTH; amidst lofty and beauti- three generals to every regiment of foot ful trees, and surrounded by herds of fat fal- and every regiment of horse, and two low-deer, lives this noble viscount, in a palace, admirals to every ship of the line. I in the middle of Richmond-park, surrounded with a high wall, ten miles in length. How should be afraid to state this fact, if it he came there, not being yet a member of a did not stand recorded in books pubreformed Parliament, I have no means of dis- lished by the Government, or persons covering. But having a great desire to know how it was, I shall certainly, if I become such acting with the approbation of the Gomember, not fail to ascertain to the greatest vernment. The fact is so monstrous, nicety.
that it seems to call in question, not
to take place.
only the spirit, but also the sanity that paid at the several places appointed for permits an abuse so outrageous. If, be the payment. cause we have so long been paying sixty Some people will say, that it is unjust millions a year to the divers sorts of tax- to tax real property, and nothing else ; gatherers, you think you cannot be safe while others have said, I dare say, that in your houses if we pay only four or to take off the tithes, is only giving five millions a year, then indeed you their amount to the landlords. These must continue to pay the sixty; but ob- are very narrow views taken of the serve, at the same time, that a parlia- matter. A tax upon land is a tax upon mentary reform is a thing neither wanted everything which the land produces. If nor to be rationally desired. It is for you lay a pound of tax upon a landlord, the express purpose of lightening the he lays it on upon the tenant in rent; burdens of the people: it is for the express and the tenant lays it upon his wheat purpose of making cheap government, and his meat and other produce. All of and, if it do not answer this purpose, us are consumers, according to our seveit will be a great deal better for it never ral means of consumption. In this the
landlord and the farmer would pay their Now, gentlemen, for the means of share of the land-tax, which, like every raising, in a cheap, easy, an sure man- other tax, spreads its influence in the ver, these four or five millions a year; way of privation over the whole comfor, if the sum be not reduced to that, inunity ; but a direct tax on real proin time of peace; ií a reformed Parlia- perty is the best, because it is so certain ment will not cause it to be reduced to in amount and so cheap in the collection. that, it shall be but for a very short time a pound of tax laid upon the landlord that I will have anything to do with that of a house is charged by him to his parliament. These means are, in the tenant; the tenant, if he be in any busifirst place, custom-house duties; these ness, divides it among his customers ; now amount to about seventeen millions and if he be not in any business, he of pounds sterling a year. They might, deducts it in some shape or other from with great advantage to commerce and his servants, or from those with whom manufactures, be reduced to three or he is accustomed to deal. four, and still leave sufficient protection A tax of this sort, like the air, reaches to navigation, and to certain manufac- everything; but it is at the same time tures. But I would have a general, free from all the vexation, all that anuniform, and cheaply-collected tax on noyance, all that endless torment, and
I would have all the those acts of merciless tyranny, which houses, lands, mines, and other real always did, and always must, grow out property, valued; the amount of tax on of a tax on consumable commodities. It each parcel of property should be fixed, is just the same with regard to tithes: and be paid quarterly by the person in the tithes would not be given to the occupation ; and the payment should landlord any more than to the rest of take place on the same day in every the community; nor are they in their county, and at different places in the nature at all oppressive any more than county, in order to make the matter as rent is. The farmer has two landlords in little inconvenient as possible. The place of one, that is all ; and the taking payment should be enforced by a process away of the benefices of the clergy is at once speedy and effectual, and the only, in fact, the putting an end to so parties liable to pay should bring the many small proprietors of land. But, in money to the appointed place, and not the first place, the property belongs to have it demanded of them at their seve- the public and the poor; in the next ral places of abode. There would be place, it is consumed by those who do no need of any expense of collection nothing for it. The tithe taken away beyond a mere trifle to the person ap- from the parsons, the benefit is diffused pointed to receive the money from the amongst the whole of the community; county ; because the county should take and this is the ground for taking it care to have the money brought and away, and not because it is a hinderance
to agriculture. A tax upon real property, tedious, in order to be understood. He was at 4 per cent. upon the rental, would afraid to read the book he held in his band yield about four millions a year in Great i (the Bible), but he would read it
. No man
could deny that the state of the nation was Britain ; and extended to Ireland, it truly deplorable. Nothing had altered his might yield four and a half or five. It opinion since he last addressed the House on would be varied of course, according to this subject. The nation treinbled on the the wants of the state ; and of these verge of destruction—no man could calculate
ou subordination in any society-in every wants the representatives of the people district there were disorders. There was also would be the judge.
the frightful collision of the two Houses of One conspicuous benefit which must Parliament. The houses of the nobles and inevitably arise from the change is this: gentry were entered and pillaged—one of the that nine-tenths of the time which is now parties were threatening a conflict so manifest
cities plundered and robbed by the mob. Two spent by the Parliament in discussing the that amidst all these things, everybody of details of taxation; and in discussing the considerate mind should consider their ways merits of petitions, containing com- and mend them. Shall we not bow down be
fore that God whose band is on us-consider plaints on the score of the divers taxes, our ways and go down on our knees to sup, would all be saved. That enormous plicate that mercy which is gone from us? voluine of laws which each session now He would read the grounds of a nation's prosproduces, equal in bulk to all the statutes perity. This nation stands as Jerusalem forof any ten kings before the reign of the merly stood. It has been the seat of true reHouse of Hanover, would be reduced to civil polity that ever existed ; and if we be as
ligion, and has reared up the finest system of the size of one of those pamphlets which Jerusalem was, we must suffer equally :the boroughnrongers' Parliament allowed “ Woe unto thee, Chorazin, woe unto thee, us to'publish, at a price not less than Bethsaida ; for if the mighty works which sixpence; and the reformed House of they would have repented long ago in sack
were done in you were done in Tyre and Sidon, Commons, driving Bellamy's boozing-cloth and ashes.". ken from beneath its roof, would have [He then read a long list of texts of Scripture.] time by daylight soberly to consider the So will it be with Eugland, if we faithfully
; measures necessary to provide for the be able to set before the nation the truth of its
humbly, and sincerely repent. I trust I shall happiness of the people, to preserve the weakness-first, the increase of crime shows power and uphold the honour of the the absence of religion and piety; secondly, kingdom.
the oppression of the poor was beyond his
conception. He was lost in astonishment. A GENERAL FAST. The fact was so great that he could not ac
count for it. The first lived in luxury and HOUSE OF COMMONS, 26TH JANUARY. plenty; the labourer in a state of actual star;
Mr. Perceval: I perceive that strangers vation, and a degree of distress that would are in the House.
harrow up your very souls. He could not The SPEAKER: Strangers must withdraw. point out the causes, but the fact was glaring.
The officers then proceeded to clear the He appealed to Mr. Sadler to point out the gallery.
sufferings of the children of the poor. The Mr. Hume: I presume I:may move the heathens made their children pass through the suspension of the standing order.
fire to their god Moloch-we make our chilThe SPEAKER : Strangers must withdraw. dren pass through misery for our gain. The The gallery was then cleared.
destruction of Bristol is a sample of God's Mr. Perceval could speak with more wrath when abroad in the land. 'Passing that boldness in the absence of the public. He and the pestilence, the state of the poor is could persuade the members who are all of enough to induce this House to address the them baptized, and not allow the public to crown to order a fast. It must not be supknow the blasphemies that might be spoken posed that he was a fool to call on this House, in answer to his speech-that the blasphemers, which he did, as a body, only in love and if any in this House, might not be able to give truth. You sit here (said the honourable publicity to their blasphemies. That was his Member) infidels-you do not consult your excuse for clearing the House of strangers. Maker. This House meets here, and talks on God was present amongst us, and he would public affairs, as if there was no God. Let witness all that passed. In the name of God every man answer for himself. You have no the Highest, he appealed to the House; and more consideration than if you acknowledged as it was written in his Word, that he who no God. You are all infidels. Look at the rejected him that appeared in the name of God public press; the march of intellect, the spirit despised him that sent him, he that rejected of the day, is sheer idolatry. You forget God, him (Mr. Perceval) rejected his God, in whose and think of doing everything by capital, by Dame be appeared, He would risk being machinery, by laws, &c.; but you are acting
on a wrong principle. All those acts of un- | whether they would bend their knee to their , godliness had been practised by other nations. God. If they would not, the nation should ki For example, the French left out that “the know their refusal. He would have the whole 6: King ruled by the grace of God ;” also that nation, the Lords, and Commons, to join in
blasphemy in England, “that all power was act of humiliation. The Ministers had not
from the people”-sheer blasphemy, as all done it—the House of Commons had put it a power is from God, and the duty of man is to aside. But hy that anointed name by which
submit and to obey! See what is going on iu he acted, he would appeal to them, and it must France and England. It is blasphemy to at- be done. Moving the previous question tribute power to the people. He dehed the would not do; the House must reject the noble Lord to point out a word in the Bible tion. If they did, all Europe would see that power was from the people ; that slavish (said the hon. Member) that ye reject your bowing to public opinion bad robbed the noble God's authority. You cannot escape this Lord of all his honesty and wanhood. In the charge. By the name, and by the blood of councils of the nation there were slaves to that that Saviour, I implore you to support this blasphemy—but power was only from God. motion. But he bad been told formerly, that He was aware he was speaking loud and with in this blasphemous and uphallowed atmoa warmth, but not with violence ; he was sin- sphere, he ought not to have used that name. cere, and was urging these truths in his usual But it is in that blessed name--the name of way, when he was under an influence. The that living God and Saviour who now sees motion belonged to each Member individually, you and is amongst you that I alono appeal as every man had been baptized into the name and act. Christian men should love to see of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, and him call on the pame of him in whose name could not disobey the precepts and la of you were baptized. Cast not off the reverence their God. They might disregard the laws, due to that name; beware of that infidelity father and brother, but would they refuse the that is creeping on you on both sides of the precepts of God? “I was taken up,” said House, and 'depriving you of your manhood; the honourable Member, “on the death of my for the safety of your own souls I call on you father, by the nation, wbich abundantly pro- to honour that name. I have done my duty vided for me and mine ; and it is in gratitude to avert the evils that are coming on Christfor tbat kindness that I call on the House to endom, preceded by the pestilence. Beware address the crown to issue a proclamation for of the wrath that went forth on the plain a fast. It has been done before by Parlia- against Sodom and Gomorrah--and those are ment, and I do not admit the objection that a type of the judgment that is fast coming this place is not a fit and proper place. Are upon Christendoni. My cry is that God's We not chosen to meet and advise what, as mercy may be on us if we humble ourselves. Christians, we ought to advise for the good Let all the people praise and sing for joy, and of the pation ?
Are we to leave all religion the desolating force of God shall pass by; The at the door of the House, and listen to hou. Member concluded by moving, that an the wiles of Satan? No. Í stated it last humble address be precented to the King, to year, and I will repeat the character of infi- order a day for a general fast and humiliation. delity that pervades the public mind. At that After some pause the motion was seconded time there was the blasphemous proposition by Mr. Weyland, of Hedon. to admit the Jew into this House. If our Lord ALTHORP stated that this discussion on Saviour was raised, and is now in heaven, at such a topic was highly inexpedient. That he the head of his Church, are we to admit a Jew disclaimed being tinctured with infidelity; to our councils ? The Edinburgh Review, but he was of opinion that such discussions the fifth sign of the infidelity of the times, did not tend to the honour of religion. The defended that. Man is a fool in his heart, motion was neither desirable nor necessary. He and sayeth those things. It was enormous gave Mr.Perceval credit for his good intentions. that this body of Christians should say, we are He meant no disrespect to him by not following. not inclined to consider of God's greatness and him in his argument, and should move the mercy; if so ungodly as to entertain the previous question; by which he intended that question, what a state was the nation in the House should express its opinion, that The bent of the human mind is now to set questions like the present ought not to be aside kings and priests, and to set up the peo- taken up. It was the intention of the Governple as the Sovereigns; and I would call on ment to appoint a day of fusting: the nation to humiliate themselves, and avert Mr. GOULBOURN understood the noble Lord such evils. Let the kings and priests be ex- to say, that the object would be accomplished pelled, and all such mummery be averted, un- without going to the vote. If the noble Lord you
will listen to my voice for a fast and did not make such a promise, he hoped the humiliation. If you agree, I will request
the motion would be pressed. House of Lords also to supplicate for a fast, Sir THOMAS BARING would vote for the and we all shall then be bound up together in motion, if a Fast Day were not to be appointed. one solemn act. He would not withdraw his Lord ALTHORP : It is the intention of the motion as he did last year; he would not Government to appoint a fast day. give way, but would divide the House. He Mr. Briscoe heard the declaration of the would force the House of Commons to declare noble Lord with pleasure, and it was to him an