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subject of the Stamp taxes and the dustrious classes ; and that jo every Auction taxes ; that I have done this instance (except in one of insigni. in a resolution, stating in several dis- ficant amount) the tax goes on gettinct propositions, the facts to show the ting heavier and heavier in proporpartiality and the monstrous injustice tion as the party paying gets of these taxes; and to show too, that if poorer and poorer. these taxes had been laid on impartially, These propositions I am prepared to but a very small portion of the National maintain ; and to show at the same Debt would now have existed! My time, and show beyond all doubt, that readers are aware that I proposed this this has been done wilfully, intentionresolution, stating these facts, and con- ally, and in the most deliberate and cluding with a proposition that the premeditated manner. I am prepared House would resolve itself into a gene. to show, that it cannot have been done ral committee, in order to take the by mistake, or upon erroneous calculamatter into its consideration. After tion. I am prepared to show, that not the moving of this resolution, which one farthing of the present National appeared to astound many of those who Debt would now have been owing to any had assisted in passing the acts of which body, if the taxes had been laid on and I complained, it was thought, and I collected upon and from the rich (during myself thought it best to have the the last forty-two years), as they have resolution printed in the votes, and been from the poorer tradesman, manusent round" to all the members, in facturer, and farmer. These things I order that every man of them might stand pledged to show to the satisface have time to refer to the acts of Parlia- tian of this nation; and if I fail to show ment, and see whether I were correct it, let me, oh God! be subject to a or not; and, to bring the motion on red-coat tribunal. again, in a more deliberate manner in Now, I have received no answer; 110 a few days.
contradiction to any of my facts; no My readers, after having read the last attempt has been made to thwart my Register, must be aware of the extreme conclusions ; and, what is very curious, difficulty of bringing in any motion at I, in my haste to bring the matter forall, even by the Ministers themselves, ward, and like the gnat in the fable, to or with their assent and good will
, give the fowler a sting in his leg, while owing to the local impediments with he was taking aim across St. George's which we are surrounded. However, Channel; in my haste to do this, I the subject cannot suffer from a short overlooked a most important part of my delay : there shall be a total prohibition subject; namely, proof indubitable, that established against me before I vote these taxes were laid in this manner one farthing of money, until this affair with deliberate intention, of which proof be settled. The case stands thus, at I will say no more at present, than that present. I assert, as follows :
I am very much obliged to my two 1. That here is a mass of taxes, which, correspondents in Scotland, and to my
together with the expenses of col. most excellent correspondent in the lecting and managing, amount to county of Suffolk, for having pointed upwards of eight millions of pounds out to me this most important omission. sterling in a year.
I should have ferreted it out myself, but 2. That of this immense sum, a very my correspondent at Annan, though he
small portion falls upon the nobi- made a mistake as to a little douging lity and their collateral branches ; which the gamế had taken, certainly upon the baronets; upon the lay-quickened my pursuit. There impropriators; upon the clergy of livers wars of hunting a fox; and no the established church; and upon reynard, however gray, however long
the other great landowners. practised in his crafty calling, ever 3. That this innense mass of taxes surpassed the animal which I have to
fulls alınost wholly upon the in- pursue, and finally catch. One way is
what the French call suivre à la piste, 'nothing but an over-ruling sense of and what we call following by the track. duty to my country would have tempted This is the nature of my present puro me, or have induced me on any account suit; and the great difficulty in such a whatsoever, to set my foot within the pursuit arises froin the interventions of walls of that House. hard ground, heaths, herbage, wood. Crafıy as this reynard of taxation has lands, and the like, unless there be snow been, I have, at the end of twenty-three upon the ground; and then you see years come nextJuly; for I began the chase plainly all the doublings of the devil. seriously, when they first got me into I am working in a state of things, where prison for expressing my indignation at I do not find the ground clothed in what the flogging of Englishmen at the town Hervey calls “ winter's bright array." of Ely under a guard of Hanoverian I have nothing but the bare ground, and bayonets ; at the end of twenty-three long chasms are everlastingly interven- years, I have pursued the old reynard, ing, to add to my difficulties. These cun- till I have now got him fairly housed ning devils, the foxes, in order to elude in his den, and, as my lord and I well their
pursuers, will sometimes leap know, when he is once run to kennel, upon the top of a hedge, which has a the red-jacket part of the chase is over, hether sufficient to carry them, and by that the rest is left to the chopsticks, this means they fling out hounds and and is a question of terriers and spades, trackers altogether, unless some chop- and not a question of galloping and leapstick happens to see the trick, and ing; and I claim my right to be head thus bring the pursuers to the spot chopstick in thus finishing the chase, where the crafty thief quits the hedge. and have actually half a mind to put on Sometimes the old sly-boots will squat my. smock-frock for the occasion. The down, load his brush with filth, which first hunter that is in at the death claims I need not more fully describe; then the brush, as the trophy of victory, and take a run round, swing his brush of his superiority in point of hardihood about, and scatter the filih; and then and speed. My Lord has had many of dart off, leaving the hounds with their these brushes in his time, and I would noses too full of the strong scent to be to God he would deserve to have the able to take up that slight scent, over brush now. He may, if he will : he will the ground, on which he has gone off on be unenvied by me: I want no honour, tip-toe. No man knows these tricks and no reward, not even that of thanks better than my Lord Althorp, at whom from anybody, though I wish to deserve I never look without thinking of his the latter, and though I know I shall and my former pursuits, he on horseback, have them. If his lordship earn the brush and I on foot; and, without philoso- in this case, all will be peace, all will be phising on the state to which we have contentment; if he force the brush upon now brought ourselves, and on the pro- me, greatly do I fear the consequences. bable fate which finally attends us ; al- I want na praise, no cheers, no huzzas; ways concluding with saying to myself I want the thing done peaceably and with a sigh, how much better it would honestly: I want, as I have said a hunhave been for England, if circumstances dred, hundred times over, to leave my had not arisen to make him think it country as good as I found it ; as good necessary to take his seat on that bench, as my grandfather left it to me; and, and to cause the people of England to in order to do that, there is no sacrifice
up to me as a person necessary to that I will not make, and no risk that I be placed where I am placed for the will not run. purpose of obtaining a redress of their I have chosen to begin (for it is only grievances ! I verily believe that there a beginning) with this department of is not a day of his life, in which he taxation. “One thing at a time,” said does not wish that he had never seen the famous De Witt; and so say I. I that bench; and, for my own part, I have chosen to begin with this departrepeat, for the hundredth time, that ment of taxation; because it is great in
amount; because it is so monstrously never asked a man to vote with me, and partial and unjust ; and because not a I never will : I will vote for everything man upon earth can have anything to that I think right, let who will propose gainsay ; because there is no room for it: I must necessarily wish for a maevasion or shutte ; because the griev- jority to be of my opinion : but never ance is so great, and because the motive will I say one word ; never will I refor inflicting it is so clear. The pub- frain frem saying one word, for the purlic have seen that there is no answer to pose of obtaining a majority. be given to me. The last thing that my Very glad to have a day appointed Lord Althorp said upon the subject for the discussing of this great subject
, was, that he deprecated my practice of upon which I have never consulted everlastingly bringing the thing up; with any member of Parliament but my and he added, that though in this in- colleague, whose integrity, as well as stance it would seem that the indus- the soundness of whose judgment, are trious classes were un fairly dealt by, it well known to a very considerable porwould be but fair to wait until the sub- tion of England. Very glad to have a ject came regularly forward for fuil dis- day appointed for the discussion ; but cussion; and that then he would show, not very glad to have this important that upon the whole of the taxation, all matter so clear, so plain, so independent sorts of taxes taken into view at once, of all other thing's mixed up with a the system of taxation was impartial. mass of other matter, some parts of
Now, if my lord ever condescends to which might admit of dispute. We read this little paper of mine, which Mr. will, if it so please his Lordship, take Methuen hardly does (he having thought the divers branches of taxation, ONE proper when I could not answer him, to AT A TIME. “ Sufficient unto the speak of it in no very courteous terms, day is the evil thereof." I will take for which, however, I by no means blame the other branches in due time, and him ; though he cannot say of it, at any in like formal manner ; and I cannot rate, that it escapes taxation); if my help saying that his Lordship is a little lord should cast his eye by accident unreasonably impatient as to this point. upon this paper, he may learn from I once saw a thief receiving the “ forty me that nothing upon this earth would lucking one,” from the hands, or rather give me so much pleasure as to see a froin a good horsewhip, of the sheriff of day appointed for the express purpose of the province of New Brunswick, the taking this weighty matter into consider- ceremony being performed in a celation; and into consideration, and se- lar on account of the intensity of the rious consideration, it must be taken ; cold. The long Yankee sheriff laid it on and that too at no very distant day. If well, and, if Sir John Cam Hobhouse such day were appointed, there should had seen the operation, he would have be my flag of truce : I want no foul wanted little more to convince him, fighting : I want to take no advantage : that restraining courts-martial merely I want to excite no popular prejudice : to the number of lashes, was not doing I want to pick no holes in the coat much. The patient (who on such ocof the Ministry: I want not even to casions is very diffieult to please) beshare in any of the praises, which any lgan, with the first blow, part of the people have, or shall have, to * Strike me higher !” bestow : I want justice to be done to " the Yankee; “ have patience. I'll be my countrymen : I would prefer its" up there presently; "and whack came being done by the Ministers them- the thong across the fellow's back a seselves, or, at least, at their suggestion : cond time, raising another black swellI would rather it should be done by any. ing almost as thick as your finger. Now, body than by myself; but if nobody if my Lord will but be patient, though else will do it, done it shall be by me, if I have begun so low down as the stamps I have life and health to permit me to and the auction duties, I will be "up do it. I want to have no party : Ithere " at the excise and customs all in
crying out Ay, ay,” said due time; and in just the same formal been employed in the manner and for manner, until the whole of the toiling the purposes for which it was granted. people of this country, of matchless Numerous detached inquiries, on these industry and labour, shall see how subjects, not only do no good, but they it is that they have been made poor tend to produce harin : they multiply and kept poor, in spite of all their, the subjects of talk; they form an "excare, all their toil, and all their fru-cuse for a multiplicity of officers and gality, and, while the idle and dissolute, of clerks; they arm official readiness in spite of their squanderings, have with subterfuge and chicane, against grown more and more rich : until 1 unofficial, though honest conjecture; have made that fine young statesman, they give little triumphs to falsehood Sir Robert Peel, see how that political over truths, and to roguery over honesty; phenomenon has happened, which he so and, therefore, I have always been against much deplored, namely, that the wealth this hunting about after the money, of the country has got into too few after it has been let out of the purse, hands.
which is not a bit less ridiculous, and No, no! no mixty-marty: no mess- inconsistent with common sense, than ings up; but an inquiry, a separate in my conduct, when I was a very little quiry relative to each of the branches boy, and let niy blackbird out of the of taxation; and a doing of strict justice cage, and then roared like a bull, and as to each ; it always having appeared called to my grandmother to help me to me, that the prime duty of a mem. to call him down out of the appleber of the House of Commons consisted, tree. My poor grandmother came runnot in watching the expenditure of the ning out of the house to see what was money, but in preventivg it from being the matter with me; but upon learntaken improperly away from the people. ing the subject of my distress, she The House of Commons have been shook her head, just as she would called “the guardians of the public now, poor woman, if she were to see purse;" they have been said " to hold us members of Parliament, running, the public purse-strings in their hands." bawling about after the money, after we And this is their true business : they are had let it out of the purse. Nor have not to leave the purse open, let the we the consolation that my granny gave King and his servants take out of it what me; for she not only gave me a plumthey please ; and then run about teasing cake, but told me that Jack Croft had after them to know what they have got some blackbirds, and that he would done with the money; and so to act as give me one. My Lord King told us a sort of clerks of the check to the once, at a county meeting at Epsom, King's servants. “I'd rather be a dog “ Gentlemen, if you really intend to and bay the moon, than such a member. “ make the Ministers economical, you It
may, indeed, be very proper to call “ must insist upon your members rethe King's servants to a general ac- fusing them supplies ; for, though I count of what they have done with any “ do not know much about them, I do money that has been put into their “ know this, that, if you give them the hands; and no length of time ought to " money, they will spend it, upon some screen them from such inquiry. But," thing, or some person or other.” in fact, the duty of a House of Com- I was very much pleased with this mons is principally this : to suffer no observation of my Lord King; and it taxes to be levied, until they have a described a principle upon which I was clear statement of what these taxes are determined, and am determined, to act. wanted for ; until they have examined Far be it from me to disparage the eninto the validity of such statement ;. to deavours of any man to detect and ex- : refuse or grant, upon the result of such pose the misapplication of the public examination : and afterwards to demand money; to do this shows honest intenan account of the disbursements, and tions, and it is worthy of public apto ascertain whether the money have plause. But, it is the weak ground:
the moving party takes on him a containing, as many distinct propositions load of labour; not only with the as may be necessary; and concluding chance of apparent defeat; but, at best, with a proposition for the House to do as it is dealing in comparatively small something in the case. This elaborate sums, with a slight chance of exciting manner of proceeding will, before I great anul general interest. He is not have done, put every man in the country to blame the public, if they be unmoved in possession of a clear view of the real by his efforts; and then comes the state of the whole concern ; and, if the great objection; that is to say the picture be frightful, if it do tend to exefforts must necessarily be so nu- cite anger, indignation, hostile feeling merous; that, in time, they must wholly in the breasts of the industrious parts of lose their effect.
the community, who is to accuse me For these reasons the path which I of wrong doing or of evil intentions ! have chalked out for myself is this. and will not all the consequences, bow
1. To take the several branches of ever terrible, rest on the heads of those taxation, one by one; and, under each who have the power, but who have not head, show how the industrious classes the will, to redress the wrongs of which are treated by the acts of Parliamentim- I complain on the part of the people? posing these taxes.
If I ever state what is not true, there is 2. To take the several heads of ex- the House, and there are the Ministers penditure, also one by one, and show, in to contradict me; and there is this i he same formal manner, what part of sensible and just people to hear the conthis expenditure goes into the pockets tradiction as well as the statement. If of the aristocracy, and what part is ex. I state nothing but truth, where is the pended for the real services of the state man, except some blaspheming Jew, and of the country.
or the mortgager slave of some blasTo do this will demand prodigious pheming Jew, who, if the miserable labour; but it will demand very little slave refused to embrace hiin, and information, which I do not already thereby trample upon the cross, might possess. I will not bother the House seize his estate, of which he now apof Commons nor the King's servants, pears to be the owner, and make him hy calling for a multiplicity of papers. poacher in his turn, or send him to I will call for such as are necessary to crack stonès upon the highway, or to enable me to state my facts correctly. be a tenant of the poor-house ; where is If these be refused me, I shall proceed the man, I say, who is to blame me for upon the most accurate estimate that I what I do? Either this system of taxcan make ; and, upon the ground of ation and of expenditure is just, or it is the refusal to give me the papers, I not. Either the aristocraey have dealt shall assume that my estimate is true. For fairly by the people, or they have not: instance, now, I estimate that more than in other words, they have been oppresfour millions of money have been charged sors, or they have not. If they have not, against the country for SECRET SER- what wrong can be done them, by VICES within the last forty-three years. making the fact known to the world, The account can be made out by any and by putting that fact beyond all posclerk of the Treasury in one hour. If sible dispute ? If they have, what a base the account be refused me,I shall assume wretch must that be who deprecates a that my estimate is true : and this is the communication of the fact to the people way in which I shall proceed till I have who have been thus oppressed ! rummaged the whole concern to the bot- This is to be my line of conduct ; tom. There will be a resolution or two thus I am resolved to proceed, without about the administration of justice, and the smallest regard to majorities or miabout the clergy of the established norities, or to the opinions of persons of church. I shall always proceed in the any description whatsoever. But, again same manner in which I have begun, as I say, that without the people at our to form; one resolution in each case backs we can do nothing ; or, at least,