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subje&t? This very conne&ion, the necessity of wbich has been admitted on all hands, has been attacked by Foreign Enemies, and by Domestic Traitors. The diffolution of that connection is the great object of the hostility of the common Enemies of both Countries, it is almost the only remaining hope with which they now continue the contest. Baffled and defeated as they have hitherto been, they still retain the hope, they are still meditating attempts, to diffolve that connection. God grant that in this instance, the same favour of Divine Providence, which has in so
fo many instances protected this Empire, may again interpose in our favour; and that the attempts of the Enemy to separate the two countries, may tend ultimately to knit them more closely together, to strengthen a Connection, the best pledge for the happiness of both, and so add to that power which forms the chief barrier to the civilized world, against the destructive principles, the dangerous projects, and the unexampled usurpation of France. This Connection has been attacked not only by the avowed Enemies of both Countries, but by internal Treason, acting in concert with the designs of the Enemy. Internal
Treason, which engrafted Jacobinism on those difeases which necessarily grew out of the State and Condition of Ireland.
Thinking, then, as we all must think, that a close Connection with Ireland is essential to the interests of both Countries, and feeing how much this Connection is attacked, let it not be infinuated that it is unnecessary, much less improper, at this arduous and important crifis, to fee whether some new arrangements, fome fundamental regulations, are not necessary, to guard against the threatened danger. The foreign and domestic Enemies of these kingdoms have shewn, that they think this the vulnerable point in which they may
be most successfully attacked ; let us derive advantage, if we can, from the hostility of our
, Enemies let us profit by the designs of an Enemy, who, if his conduct displays no true wifdom, at least poffesses in an eminent degree that fpecies of wisdom which is calculated for the
promotion of mischief. They know upon what footing that Connection rests at this moment between the two countries, and they, feel the most ardent hope, that the two Parliaments will be infatuated
enough not to render their designs abortive, by fixing that Connection upon a more solid basis.
These circumstances I am sure will not be denied. And if .upon other grounds we had any doubt, these circumstances alone ought to induce us, deliberately and dispassionately, to review the situation of the two countries, and to endeayour to find out a proper remedy for an evil, the existence of which is but too apparent. It requires but a moment's reflection, for any man who has marked the progress of events, to decide upon the true state and character of this Connection. It is evidently one which does not afford that security which, even in times less dangerous and less critiçal than the present, would have been necessary, to enable the empire to avail itself of its strength and its resources,
When I last addressed the House on this sub. jed, I stated that the settlement, which was made in 1782, so far from deserving the name of a Final Adjustment, was one that left the Connection between Great Britain and Ireland exposed to all the attacks of Party, and all the effects of
accident. The Settlement confifted in the demo. lition of the System which before held the two Countries together. Let me not be understood as expressing any regret at the termination of that System. I disapproved of it, because I thought it was one unworthy the liberality of Great Britain, and injurious to the interests of Ireland. But to call that a System in itself—to call that à glorious fabric of human wisdom-which is no more than the mere demolition of another System-is a perversion of terms which, however prevalent of late, can only be the effect of gross misconception, or of great hypocrisy. We boast that we have done every thing, when we have merely destroyed all that before existed, without substituting any thing in its place. Such was the Final Adjustment of 1782 ; and I can prove it to be so, not only from the plainest reasoning, but I can prove it by the opinion expressed by the British Parliament at that very time. I can prove it by the opinion expressed by those very Ministers by whom it was proposed and conducted. I can prove it by the opinion of that very Government who boast of having effected a Final Adjustment. I refer, for what I have said, to proofs which they will find it
very difficult to answer; I mean their own ads, which will plainly fhew that they were of opinion that a new System would be necessary. But, Sir, i will go
farther-I will also produce the authority of one of those whose influence, on the present occafion, has been peculiarly exerted to prevent the discussion of the question in Ireland-of one, of
, whom I do not wish to fpeak but with respect, but for whom, nevertheless, I should convey an idea of more respect, than I can now feel to be due to him, if I were merely to describe him as the person who fills the same situation, in the House of Commons of Ireland, which you, Sir, hold among us, and of which on all occasions you discharge the duties with a dignity and impartiality which reflects so much credit on yourself, and fo well supports the character and authority of the House.
On a former night, I read an Extract from ibe Journals, to shew what was the opinion even of those by whom the Final Adjustment was proposed, of that Measure. It would there appear, that the Message was sent to the Parliament of Ireland, recommending to them the adoption of