Imatges de pàgina
PDF
EPUB

be so.

who agreed to give them that amount, brought to a competition with the profit by the wrong.. By the pass- foreign farmer who produces his grain ing of Mr. Peel's Bill, it is considered at 40s. a quarter. Now let us pause, that twenty millions a year are thus and seeing what misery has attended added to the taxes : I agree

therefore our present reduction of price, let us with the first speaker, in attributing only give a moment's consideration our distress principally to enormous

to the fate which in the opinion of taxation, and I would have a rigid this gentleman and his friends awaits economy enforced, but one far more us. They have witnessed an increase efficacious than he hints at.

of taxation to the amount of twenty With the argument of the second millions a year, by the operation of speaker, so far as it is directed a- Mr. Peels Bill, but this is only while gainst the re-enactment of the Bank it is proceeding to restore money to its Restriction Act, I have nothing to do, true standard ; and “ one good effect being as averse to that act as he can of it is the daily bringing the English be. But when he speaks of the fic- farmer to a state of competition with titious value of paper money, he ad, the foreign grower.” And how many vances to a position which I know to millions will that cost us? Far above be untenable, and can easily prove to twenty more. Yes, it has ruined hun

The Bank-note and promis- dreds of the most industrious and resory note are alike the representatives spectable families in this countıy, of value, and they carry that value and it will according to this informawith them, let them pass into what- tion continue daily to add to their ever hands they may. No man can numbers, till the farmer and all who get the one or give the other without are dependent on him are ground some property to that amount be down to the dust, "low as their rootcoming responsible for the bill. But ing plough.” do not men deceive the Banker? does This brings me to the third speaker, not, the Banker himself often fail? and who, as if to show the propriety of all are not promissory notes often re- this destruction of the farmer's proturned for want of effects ? Certainly: perty, calls it.“ the work of retribu

in all this the country is not en- tive justice," and says, “that to repeal titled to complain of the fictitious the act would be absolute spoliation." value of paper money, for in each in- If I am wrong, I beg his pardon, but stance some other person's property I understand, by retributive justice, has made good the deficiency, and he that the farmer is 'losing now, in has no right to complain of a loss to some proportion to his former gains. which, perhaps, want of due caution, But perhaps it is not the same man or too great eagerness for gain, ex- who gained? Then it was his father posed him : still less is he entitled to or his grandfather, as the wolf said to blame paper money as the cause of the lamb in the fable. Yes, and the his loss, for it was properly imputa- offending farmer who did gain, is as ble to his giving credit. But shall much deserving punishment for it as we be told that nobody ought to trust the unoffending sheep. He had a another person? Yes: absurdities beneficial lease or a kind landlord, great as this have found advocates of and he made a handsome profit of his late in the frenzy with which men farm. But he did not contrive all this have been led to quarrel with any- benefit to himself-he did not make thing, when something, they know a contract, and then make a law turnnot what, distresses and provokes ing that contract more to his own adthem.

vantage than his unsuspecting landBut whither does the view of the lord imagined. He worked hard, had opponents of a free paper currency much enterprize, cultivated his land carry them? By the mouth of the with superior skill, and improved in second speaker, who says, he ex- his fortune as might be expected presses the sense of those financiers from these exertions, as well as from who are best acquainted with the the greater plenty of money. But whole bearing of this great question, he did not keep that money in his we learn, that the agricultural inte- chest. He lived freely, and even exrest is not yet above half way down pensively, communicating to a vast to the level to which they expect it number of tradesmen the wealth he » to sink. The English farmer is to be derived from the soil. They were equally enriched, and raised in re- speedily too; it is only the loss of the spectability with himself. And as farmer's capital first, in the low prices his leases fell in his landlord was not of produce, which retards for a time forgotten. It is, perhaps, the endea- the same ruin in its approach to vour of the latter to secure to himself them: nor will the lord of the soil, some portion of this benefit rather or the fundholder, escape. Petitions longer than is reasonable that supplies so signed cannot fail of accomplishthe expression of retributive justice; ing their object; for what can the for that term may be applicable Whigs desire more than a retrenchthe payment of rent, though not to ment to the amount of twenty mil. the payment of taxes.

lions a year; and the Tories have no As for the dread of spoliation in excuse for non-compliance, who atthe case of recent contracts, set the tribute all the distress to Mr. Peel's injustice of the one case against that Bill, and whose only reason for not of the other; and, in the opinion of desiring its repeal, is a groundless all impartial men, the obligation to fear for those who have entered into restore the currency to its proper recent contracts. We may calculate level would be unquestionable. Let therefore on having both sides with any one calculate the odds for him, us in Parliament. self: the farmer, who pays the same The following form of a petition rent and taxes now which he paid at was drawn up at the request of some the end of the war, pays annually friends who wished to be prepared one-third at the least more than he for a public meeting likely to be conought to pay: we know how many vened in an important agricultural of our neighbours and friends are in district of one of the midland coun, this predicament, and pretty gene- ties. It contains, of course, more rally to what amount they are by this than is necessary to be inserted in means annually impoverished; and we petitions in general, but it will sugcan compare them with the instances gest, to those who may wish to adopt which we know of to the contrary, the prayer of it, topics worth their where the landlord or the contractor consideration. The prayer itself comes will be in danger of losing by leases into a very small compass: the reason granted at the present value of money. for this is obvious. It was wished Ît is to compare the wound made by neither to embarrass the question, a pin, to that of a sword which runs

nor to appear to dictate to Parliayou through the body.

ment, hy introducing subjects of deBut if there should be any real tail. Whether the Country bankers cause for dreading absolute spolia- should be required to pay in gold, or tion, let it be avoided. The risk is in Bank of England notes, (the fordissipated by a word. Let the act, mer plan affording a more secure which places our currency on its true material to those who would rather basis, require, that all contracts en lose their interest by hoarding money, tered into within a certain period than entrust their property to their after the passing of Mr. Peel's Bill, neighbours) is a question for the shall be fulfilled in gold; in that consideration of Parliament; but not case, if a depreciation of paper should at all necessary to be determined, in ensue, neither of the contracting pare order to arrive at the merits of the ties will be injured.

case before us. In like manner, wheHaving shown how futile all the ther an arrangement should be made objections are which have been urged with the Bank of England, relative against a free paper currency, I have to the establishment of banking comonly now to call upon all who are in- panies throughout England, a meaterested in the revival of general prose sure which has been attended with perity, to join in petitioning Par- good effects in Scotland, and which liament to grant the only measure the Bank of England charter prewhich seems likely to promote it. cludes us from adopting,-as it is The agriculturist will need no encou- not essential to the fulfilinent of our ragement, the spur is in his sides, plan, is left to be argued on its own and no other plan offers for its re- grounds in the proper place. For the moval. The cause is not less that of usual recommendations of retrench, the tradesman, manufacturer, and mont, &c. no precedent here can be merchant; they will suffer next, and wanted.

PETITION FOR A FREE PAPER CURRENCY CONVERTIBLE AT ALL TIMES

INTO GOLD, AD VALOREM,
To the Honourable the Commons dently need of an extra and a peculiar

of the United Kingdom of Great currency.
Britain and Ireland in Parlia- Our paper money has supplied us
ment assembled,

with this extra currency, and with We the Gentry, Clergy, Freehold- it we were enabled to pay these

ers, and Occupiers of land in charges for the public service withthe Hundred of in the out suffering any inconvenience from County of -, most humbly the want of a larger Metallic currepresent to your Honourable rency. The only defect of the sysHouse,

tem was the non-convertibility of That, convinced of the propriety of Paper into Gold at all times. requiring the Bank of England to But all our money-transactions are resume Cash payments, we yet regret now to be represented by a Metallic that the end has been attained only currency, and thus we are reduced by the annihilation of a large amount to the following alternative: either of Paper currency, which as a repre- to have a small amount of this cursentative of value is equally neces- rency, and the same prices with other sary with a Metallic currency to countries, out of which prices our carry on the affairs of the country, public charges are to be defrayed.; and the destruction of which has en- or to have a larger amount of this tailed upon us a greater evil than currency, and prices so much higher that from which it was the intention as will include in some degree the of Parliament to relieve us.

amount of those public charges. By the alteration in the value of The former condition would load the currency which this measure has us with a burthen, the insupportable occasioned, every former money en- nature of which we may in part judge gagement still subsisting, whether of from the weight of taxation on our between individuals or with govern- present low prices; and the latter ment, has been rendered insupport, condition would inflict no less distress ably oppressive to the party which is upon us, by increasing the number bound to provide the money; and a of Absentees, by forcing our extra scale of low prices has been intro- Metallic currency out of the country duced, which deprives us even of the to enrich other nations, and by renmeans of paying our rents and taxes, dering us in the mean time unable the amount of which was calculated to cope with them in foreign marand agreed on under the operation kets. of a more abundant currency.

And it is not only unjust to ourWe would respectfully observe to selves, but a monstrous folly, to sufyour Honourable House, that Eng- fer other countries to participate in land is very differently circumstanced the interior traffic of England, -to from other nations, and that from her give them a beneficial interest in the peculiar situation she requires a very amount of our taxation—to alienate different kind of circulating medium to them, without claim of right, or from that which is proper for other shadow of return, our proper and pecountries.

culiar wealth; yet this is done by Standing on the same footing with requiring Gold to serve as the me them as to the necessity of having a dium by which property actually in circulating medium adapted to all the this country is transferred from one ordinary purposes of trade, foreign resident individual to another. and domestic, England has doubtless For this purpose a mere memoranequal occasion with them for a Me- dum on a slip of paper would suftallic currency. But in regard to her fice; and what is a note of hand peculiur situation, from having, in but such a memorandum stamped ? addition to this ordinary demand, the Again, what is a bank-note, but a task of supplying annually the very note of hand circulating without large amount of money which the in- limitation, till the holder chooses to terest of the national debt, and other consider it due, and presents it for charges, require to be placed in the payment? And a bank-note posa hands of government, she has evi- sesses this advantage, with the fure

ther quality of not requiring the that it was even then obviously inendorsements of all who have pos- efficient and impossible to be kept sessed it, to guarantee its validity. at that level, as the passing of the We make these remarks to show, Bank Restriction Act testifies. that bank-notes are the representa- We presume not to say what positives not of fictitious, but of real tive enactments may be necessary to property. They have this additional give the requisite protection to our recommendation,- they prevent the Paper currency. If the price of gold property which they represent from be given in every Gazette, and if the being carried out of the country. Directors of the Bank of England be

The convenience of these notes has required to sell gold at that price on led to their general acceptation as demand, in exchange for their own money, and they now form a peculiar notes, it may, perhaps, be sufficient. currency, which, being the natural The country banker may either pay product of taxation, and the legiti- his own notes in gold, or in those of mate representative of that property the Bank of England. At the same which constitutes the national debt, time, it will be well to allow to all is not only well adapted to our pe- persous the privilege of partaking in culiar situation, but has the further the advantages, if any, of the free advantage of always keeping pace in purchase and sale of the precious meamount with the demands for pub- tals, whether in coin or otherwise. lic service. For instance, if fresh Among the beneficial consequences taxes are imposed, or fresh loans are of placing our Paper currency on a required, more of this peculiar cur- proper footing, we look with confirency will be drawn into circulation; dence to the following: for though we cannot create gold and 1. An increase in its issue, which, silver on an emergency, we possess causing an advance in the prices of that faculty over paper money: if, all commodities, will make the present on the other hand, taxes should be rate of rent and taxes payable with remitted, or any part of the debt be less inconvenience, and will thereby reduced, paper money equivalent will benefit the tenant and the land probe thrown out of circulation, to be prietor, the trading and the mercanre-absorbed, perhaps, in some pro- tile interest. perty which had before been pledged · 2. This advance on the price of for its security

our goods at home, being imposed During this fluctuation in the solely by our national and peculiar amount of our Paper currency it will burthens, and represented by a curof course happen, that it will bear, rency peculiar to England, will leave at different times, a different propor- the Metallic price unaffected by the tion to that of the Metallic currency. advance. It follows, therefore, that At such times, we humbly conceive, we shall be able to sell our goods the natural course would be to let for the same quantity of gold as the Paper currency find its own other nations, the difference of cost value in exchange against the pre- being made up to us by the increased cious metals; and it is certainly the value of that gold when it comes to best course, for no uniform value England. The same result will atcan "be assigned to that which is es- tend the operation if carried on by sentially and for ever variable in barter : the goods of foreign counamount.

tries will sell here for as high a price And we pray that your Honourable in English currency as the goods House, with a view to fix the Paper cost which are exchanged for them. currency of this country on a per- So that the transaction, when commanent and equitable basis, would pleted, will be found, as far as price please to rescind an Act, the pro- is concerned, equally advantageous fessed object of which is the restric- to the English as to the foreign mertion of this Paper currency to the chant: and hence it is evident, that proportion which it bore to gold our foreign trade would not suffer prior to the year 1797 ; a proportion from the measure. so far from being adequate to the 3. With a free Paper currency we present wants of the nation, whose shall be able to withdraw from cirtaxes and debt have increased in culation a considerable portion of our the ratio of 8 to 3 since that period, Metallic currency, for purposes of use. or show; and thus gold and silver 5. When gold shall have advanced will become more abundant in our in price, with respect to our Paper houses, which, independent of other currency, it will cause a kind of tax advantages, will secure us a store of to fall on Absentees, whose wealth the precious metals, serviceable, per- cannot then be converted into a Mehaps, at some future period, should tallic or European currency without war unfortunately call again for its losing its English value. Thus, if well known sinews.

gold were bl. per ounce, the absen4. An invariable standard of value tee, for every 100l. here, would only will be established, to which the na- carry abroad sol. tion may constantly appeal for deter- Lastly. No one could be injured mining the relative worth of any pro- by the depreciation of the circulating perty; for instance, Rent, calculated medium; for gold, being unaltered and agreed on in gold, at the value in quantity, would be unaltered in of 4l. per ounce, would give the land- value; and Paper money, though sublord precisely the same value when ject to variation, would always be ingold should rise to be worth 5l. per creased in quantity before it became ounce; and it would be the same to reduced in quality him, whether he received the pay- We therefore humbly pray, that ment each time in gold, or whether your Honourable House will please 1001. at one time, and at another to take the subject of a free Paper 125l. were given him in paper money currency into consideration, and as the equivalent; and the tenant adopt such measures as you in your would find it equally just in both wisdom shall deem most expedient, cases. In like marmer, if a Corn to remove the present injurious reprotecting price were considered fair straints upon it, and to allow it free and just at the value of an ounce of action; to protect it equally with gold per quarter, it would remain un- the Metallic currency of the realm ; disturbed as a fair price, though that and to make it permanently payounce of gold, and with it the quar- able in gold, on the equitable printer of com, should advance in value ciple of mutual value. from 41. to 5l.

REPORT OF MUSIC. The most important circumstance The works of Haydn and Mozart attending the art of which it is 'our had in themselves sufficient to attract province to speak, is the patronage the musical public, and every im

which His Majesty has begun to pulse that compositions could possi• extend towards English Music and bly receive has been addressed to Musicians. When it is recollected the general circulation of their methat the determined attachment of lodies and pieces. To these Rossini the late King to the compositions of has succeeded, as the acquaintance Handel was productive of a strong with the Italian language has daily influence upon the taste of the coun- become more general. The music try, and served, as much as the in- of the Italian composers is far more trinsic excellence of the music itself, voluptuous, far more airy and meloto rivet the general, and almost ex- dious, and is directed to the senses ; clusive farour to the works of that while such pieces of English concomposer ; such an event cannot but struction as are best known, and be of moment to native professors. have maintained their ground at the With such establishments as the ancient concert, the oratorios, and Opera, and the Philharmonic Concerts, provincial meetings, the composigiving a decided support to foreign tions of Purcell, Handel, and Arne, musicians and foreign music, and speak only to the sublimer affecthereby leading most, if not all other tions. concerts towards the same perform- Foreign 'instrumentalists and singances, English talent certainly had ers, taken en masse, have also been not fair play on English ground. more eminently gifted, and more

5

« AnteriorContinua »