Imatges de pÓgina


department of the government.

Mini-, He decidedly objected to voting the ways sters, if they consulted the tranquillity and and means, before the House was circum. happiness of the country, should advise the stantially apprized of the purposes to illustrious Personage who exercised the which those ways and means were to be royal fonctions, lo limit his expenditure ; applied. and should inform him bow far more Mr. Bankes declared, that if he thought glorious his days would be, were be to the proposed votes were to cover any insireform his expenses to the wants of bis dious machinations that under the presubjects, instead of increasing the enor. lence of pne object, the House was called mous and unnecessary charges of an ex. upon to vote means which were to be aptravagant couri- {Hear; hear!)-It was plied to another, he would not only opnot long since, that the nation had ad-pose the motion bimself, but would use all mired iwo illustrious Sovereigns who the little influence which he possessed 10 visited our country; and the cause of their induce the House to reject it. But this having received so much approbation was, could by no possibility be the case. The that they had endured the greatest priva- sums now demanded, and much more, must tions in times of public distress. This was be voted, to make good the supplies to a conduct worthy of imitation, and he which Parliament had already agreed. As would take the liberty of recalling to the to the explanation demanded of his right recollection of the House the words which hon. friend, with respect to the peace William 3, one of the best of kings, had establishment, it was evident that his right addressed to his Parliament. It always hon, friend only waited until he might be gives me," said that great monarch, " the able to speak decidedly on the subject. deepest concern to impose new burthens Who could yet tell what might be our on my people ; but I have never called ultimate relations with America. Who for any which related to my personal could tell to what expense for the next expenses.”

twelvemonth this couniry might be put Mr. Bennet observed, that ministers had by the extraordinary occurrence of wbich not told the House a syllable as to the we had been informed only within the last his situation of the country. It was noi

two or ibree days? He could assure the real intention at that time to make any noble lord who had just spoken, that as far comment on the taxes; but when they as his humble endeavours could go, they eame before the House, it would be his should be directed not to cut down the duty to oppose them, for he objected to peace establishment below what was nethem all. He considered it proper to cessary, but to bring it down as low as abolish situations wbere there was pay was consistent with the safety of the counwithout services; and, indeed, to put Go- try; and above all, to take care that what vernment itself upon short allowance. remained of expense should be employed

Mr. J. P. Grant objected to going into not in external show, but in real and solid the committee, until the Chancellor of the strength. The measures proposed by his Exchequer had laid before the House a right hon. friend appeared to him to be distinct and comprehensive statement of much preferable to raising a larger loan, the whole of our financial relations. He or to any encroacbment on the Sinking was at a loss to 'conjecture of what yotes Fund. Certainly, unpopular as was the the supply which the right bon. gentleman sentiment, he did conceive that a contiasserted had been agreed to by the House, nuation of the property-tax, under some was made up; and expressed himself par modification, would have been a still wiser ticularly unable to understand bow the plan; and he sincerely believed, that when two sums of 15 millions and 12 millions the good sense of the country retorned and a half, to make good the issue of Ex. upon this subject, his opinion would become chequer-bills-on the aids of the year 1814, pretty general. Did he therefore reproach were to be coasidered.

ministers for having abandoned it? By no Lord Milton declared himself to be in a means. The strong hostility exhibited similar difficulty, arising either from bis towards the tax at the present moment, own misapprehension of the subject, or and the consideration, that its conservation from the mystery in which it appeared to would have been a kind of breach of parbe purposely involved. If he was right liamentary faith, were sufficient grounds in his supposition, they were, as far as the for inducing his right hon. friend to relinfive millions were concerned, about to vote quish a tax, the good qualities of wbich án establishment for four years to come. his comprehensive mind must have suffi

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ciently appreciated. With respect to the sudden occasion demand it. To principles future course of our financial regula- almost obsolete he was anxious that we Lions, one great principle was, that we should return. The dictatorship, with ought as much as possible to make our which the Administration bad for so many income and our expenditure commensu- years been properly invested, ought to rate; and he really thought, although it cease with the necessity by which it was was alarming to find the conjectural esti- required. Until he heard these doctrines mate of our peace establishment rated so acquiesced in, he must withhold his assent high as 19 millions, great savings inight be to all motions like the present. made out of that sum. On the present Mr. Whitbread expressed his admiration vtoe, however, all jealousy seemed to him of the sentiments of the hon. gentleman to be superfluous. It would not tie the who had just spoken. The original and House down to any new system of taxation, wholesome practice of the constitution or to any irrevocable amount of the peace was, that the ministers of the Crown should establishment. Before he sat down he first state 10 Parliament the whole of the mast, however, warn bis right hon. friend supplies which were requisite, and then and the House from being so misled as to obtain the ways and means of providing expect that the proposed taxes would be for those supplies. Of late years, howpermanently as productive as they might ever, the budget had been brought forward be in the first instance. With respect to by piecemeal (à system which originated those of excise, such as the tax on wine, with Mr. Perceval), so that the House they would according to repeated expe- never could have the whole system under rience occasion frauds on ihe revenue, review at one time. He admitted that and a diminished consumption; and as 10 circumstances might embarrass the right the assessed taxes, it would, after a twelve. hon. gentleman as to his exact estimate of month, be in the power of any master of a the peace establishment; but an easy family to reduce them in bis own case, and remedy was, to delay further proceedings the general result would unquestionably at present at least to postpone them until be a considerable diminution of their pro. the expected explanations of the noble duce. This system of taxation, therefore, lord, by throwing a light on the determi. could not be considered, as he considered nations of Congress, should give the House the property-tax, a sound, solid, and per- an opportunity of judging of the probable manent system of taxation.

results of its deliberations. He confessed Mr. Douglas objected to the confusion he was not surprised at the eulogium arising from the transfer of the ways and which he had heard from the right hon. means of one year to the sopply of an- gentleman, and from an hon. gentleman other. He recommended to the right on the floor (Mr. Bankes), on the property hon. gentleman to postpone any further tax. Like all deceased personages, its proceeding on this subject until after vices had vanished from memory, and only Wednesday, as the explanations, which its virtues remained. People were genewould then be given by a noble lord, rally favourable to the dead; but it should would probably affect it materially. Cer- be remembered that that tax was objectainly, if there was a time in which this tionable not because it was a tax on country had a right to expect that she property--but because it was impossible should be secured from being again en. to divest its mode of collection from pargaged in continental warfare, it was the tiality and oppression intolerable in a free present; and we had an undoubted right constitution. It should also be rememto find that our representative at the Con- bered that the property tax was not absogress had so secured her. He had old lutely dead it only slept. The right hon, prejudices enough left to entertain a gentleman bad wedded it to war. It would horror at the thought of England's de. be up again if we were again involved generating wholly into a military country. in hostilities. And here he could not reEvery approach to such a state shook the frain from noticing the bint which had foundations of our national character. fallen froin a noble lord and from the hon. He earnestly wished that the recollections genileman on the floor. It was evident of the war might be obliterated with the that in estimating the peace establishment war itself, and that from a nation of soldiers at nineteen millions, a troubled state of we might become a nation of citizens, things was contemplated, and perhaps the trusting to our energy and patriotism for recurrence of bloody wars arising out of defence against an enemy, should any the proceedings of the Congress. But the singular event of which we had very sion irretrievable ruin to our manufactures, recently heard, might lead to a civil war and must compel the emigration of our in France. In such a case, he protested manufacturers. He knew the right hon. against the interference of this country in gentleman would contend that it was in any way. I take this early opportunity, the nature of taxation to be thrown on concluded Mr. Whitbread, to declare, as a the consumer. But that remark would hint has been given on the subject, that I be inapplicable in the present instance. enter my solemn protest against any in- With respect to the foreign trade in partiterference on the part of this country in cular, it was impossible. the internal affairs of France.

Sir John Newport said, that his objection Mr. Philips was proceeding to make to the Speaker's leaving the chair was, some observations on the partial and op- that it went to perpetuate a system of pressive nature of the proposed taxes, voting the supplies of the year by piecewhen

meal, and not giving sufficient informaThe Chancellor of the Erchequer observed, tion to the House, contrary to the old and that with respect to one of those taxes, to constitutional practice. The taxes might which the objections of the bon. gentle be good or bad relatively; and that was men were probably the most strong (the the reason why they ought to be informed tax on windows), he intended to reserve it of the situation of the country. The for further consideration, and for a revision whole demand, and every article of it, of the schedule.

should be known before the supplies were Mr. Philips then adverted 10 the pro- voted. In time of war it might be ditte, posed duty on cotton, and remarked on rent; but in peace, they should return to ihe inconsistency of the right hon. gentle. that wholesome principle. man, who no longer ago than last session The Chancellor of the Erchequer observed, had declared, that in the event of peace it that one of the resolutions was to conwould be impossible for our manufacturers Linue all the war duties of excise,

" with to go on without a drawback, and who the exception of that on cotton imported now imposed a duty of 5d, a pound on in British shipping.” The whole extent cotton wool imported in foreign vessels, of his offending, therefore, was, that he and one penny a pound on cotton wool did not propose to take off the duty on imported in British vessels! From any cotton imported in foreign shipping; the advantage proposed by this inequality, a difference of expense on which to the countervailing duty on the part of the manufacturer would not be above a half. Americans would no doubt deprive us. penny a pound. To France the measure would be highly Mr. Philips repeated the statement of beneficial. In all the arrangements on its being a duty of 5d. a pound. this subject the interest of France seemed The Chancellor of the Exchequer said, to be consulted, rather than those of this that that was not the tax then under.concountry. The right hon. gentleman's sideration. predictions on this subject with respect to Mr. Finlay declared, that be considered France, had been completely falsified. the right hon. gentleman as the most forNo duty had been imposed in that coun- midable antagonist that the manufacturing iry on the importation of cotton ; and the interest of the country had ever met with. greatest protection was there afforded to The proposed systeni was so ruinous, that the cotton manufacture, at the very mo- he would give it the most determined op. ment that the right hon. gentleman was position in every instance. By it the devising every possible means to bring property tax would not merely be conours to ruin. The passing of the Corn tinued on the manufacturer-it would be Bill in that House had already occasioned more than doubled. A manufacturer a serious alarm in the manufacturing dis- would now have to pay near 3,0001. a tricts of the country. Was it desirable at year, who had probably never been liable such a moment to propose measures the to a property tax of more than 1,000.. tendency of which was to increase dis. As to the difference between the duty on satisfaction? The hon. gentleman here cotton imported in British shipping and read extracts from a letter which he had cotton imported in foreign shipping, a. received from a very intelligent indivi- countervailing duty on the part of the dual, resident in the manufacturing dis- American government.would soon equa: tricts, in which it was declared that the lize it. measures about to be pursued would occa. Mr. W. Fitzgerald said, that the only duty on cotton in Ireland was a permanent would be allowed to take precedence of duty.

the orders of the day. Mr. Elliot said, that in opposing the Mr. Horner asked the Chancellor of the motion, he gave a vote which he was Eschequer when a copy of the treaty obliged to give, from the utter want of in- concluded with America would be laid formation to satisfy the House of the ne- before the House, and whether it was incessity of the taxes they were about 10 tended to accompany with copies of vote.

the correspondence which took place in The House then divided : For the mo- the course of the negociation at Ghent ? tion, 95; Against it, 24; Majority 71. The Chancellor of the Exchequer replied,

The House tben resolved itself into the that the treaty would, no doubt, be laid committee.

before the House ; but that he was not

aware of any intention to present the HOUSE OF COMMONS.

papers alluded to by the hon. and learned

gentleman, respecting the conduct of the Tuesday, March 14.

negociations at Ghent. DUTY ON Cotton.] Mr. Finlay presented a petition from the cotton-spinners and manufacturers of Glasgow, praying

HOUSE OF LORDS. for a repeal of the duty on cotton, and

Wednesday, March 15. stating that the drawback on cotton ex. TAX ON WINDOWS OF MANUFACTORIES. ported would be quite ineffectual. The The Marquis of Lansdowne stated, that hon, member, in presenting the petition, there was a subject to which he was demade some observations on the impolicy sirous of calling their lordships attention of the duty proposed to be laid on cotton without delay, with respect to which imported in foreign ships. The effect of many petitions would have been prethis, he observed, would be to make a sented, if the forms of the House had depôt of cotton wool in Holland or France. permitted it; he alluded to the tax which, American ships would be employed to from the votes on their table, they knew bring the cotton from America to the con- to be in contemplation in the other House, tinent, and British ships would be em- on the windows of warehouses and maruployed merely as lighters to transport it factories. With the strong opinion which across the Channel. The American go- he entertained of the injustice, impolicy, veroment would not be so neglectful as to and inhumanity of this tax, he could not fail to impose some countervailing duty suffer the matter to pass without taking on the exportation of cotton wool from the earliest opportunity of calling the that country, in British ships, so that, particular attention of their lordships to without benefiting either our navigaticn ihe subject. He was convinced that no or our revenue, the duty would only tend modification that could be devised by the to excite jealousy between the two coun. noble earl opposite and the Chancellor of tries. The progress of the cotton manu- the Exchequer, could render this a mode factories in France, Prussia, Saxony, and of laxation which ought to be resorted to. other continental countries, was such as to Without, however, entering now at length threaten an ascendancy in those articles, into the subject, he should merely oband to render it doubly impolitic to throw serve, that it was impolitic, as light and any additional burthens upon our manu. air might be considered as part of the facturers. It was his intention to move on raw material in such manufactories, that some future day for a select committee to the tax was most unjust, because it had no inquire into the state of the cotton manu. connexion with the opulenc

of those on factories, and to report their opinions whom it was principally to fall; and that thereon,

it was inhuman, because of the injurious Ordered to lie on the table.

effect which it must have on the health of Mr. Whitbread said, that in consequence those employed in the manufactories. It of a communication from the noble vis was well known that at best the crowding count, Secretary for Foreign Affairs, who together so large a body of persons as was indisposed, he should viefer his motion were necessary in many manufactories, respecting our foreign relations, wbich was far from being favourable to health; stood for io-morrow, 10 Monday; and he but the evil would be increased tenfold if hoped that, as he had stated the reason for the regulations on this subject, proposed in his postponement, his motion on that day the Commons, were to pass into a law. He hoped the noble earl and the Chan. subject, the first view of it which precellor of the Exchequer would reconsider senied itself was this-what was the situas that part of their system of taxation, and tion of the country for which their lordfeel it consistent with their duty and incli. ships were now called upon to legislate? nation to abandon this interference with The country was to be regarded, both as the light and air in these manufacturies. a great agricultural and a great commerBeing himself connected with a manufac- cial country, and its power and opulence turing county, he could speak on this were founded upon and derived from, not. point with the greater confidence. To one, but both of these sources. This the remainder of the taxes, in as far as ought to be carefully kept in mind, in they affected those articles which people considering the nature and consequences would have an option whether to use or not, of the measure which he now proposed to he saw no objection. He might have some their lordships for adoption. He said that doubt as to their productiveness : but he it was carefully to be kept in mind, behad no objection to them in any other cause it would show that we ought not to point of view : but to this tax on the win. be too much influenced by any line of dows of warehouses and manufactories, he policy, with respect to this subject, which was decidedly adverse, and he could not had been adopted by countries whose ' help stating, at this early opportunity, situation and circumstances were matethat in case the measure came to that rially different from those of the country House, it would meet with his decided for which their lordships were now to opposition.

legislate. The policy of importation bad,

as be was well aware, been adopted by Corn Bill.] The Earl of Liverpool, in many small republics, ancient and mos rising to move the second reading of this dern-small republics, such as Holland, Bill, which proposed to legislate on a sub. Genoa, Venice, and others that might be ject so delicate in its nature, and so deeply mentioned. These had looked to foreign interesting and important to all classes of countries for their supplies of grain; and, the community, said, he was desirous of as far as they were concerned, that policy having it understood, that the opinion might be perfectly sound and proper, which he had formed respecting it, was But what was their situation and what not one hastily taken up, but the result of were the circumstances in which they long, anxious, and unbiassed considera were placed? They had risen by their tion. He had been for the last three commercial pursuits to a rank and opuyears revolving the subject in bis mind, lence far beyond the proportion of their and looking at it in every possible light, territorial extent or population. Their and in all its bearings and consequences ; condition was such, that they could not he had read, with all the attention in his have done so by the encouragement of power, all the evidence which had been agriculture. Their territory was too given on the question, and all the publica. limited to admit of the successful adoptions which had been given to the world, tion of any such policy. Even their po. many of them of great value, on both pulation was far beyond what could be sides; and he had done so certainly without supported by the produce of their lands; any particular bias on his mind, either and the extent of their population, as well one way or the other. There were sub as their worth, power, and rank among jects on which perhaps any mind must nations, depended upon circumstances be under some degree of bias, in favour of which rendered a large foreign supply one view of the subject rather than an- indispensably necessary. It was imposother; but if there ever was a question on sible for them to feed their population which his mind was totally destitute of all without these supplies from abroad; and, prejudice, completely free from any undue therefore, a policy which should have for bias towards one particular view of it its object the raising at home as much rather than another, this was that question. grain as should be sufficient for the conHe begged pardon of the House for thus suinption of their own population, was totaking up its time on a point which might tally out of the question. That popula. be considered as personal to himself; but tion, though very large in proportion to such was the state of his mind with re- their extent of territory, was but small spect to the question now under their when compared with ihat of the more lordships consideration.

considerable nations ; and a policy which In aitending, then, to this important might be extremely fiting to be adopted

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