« AnteriorContinuar »
For JANUARY, 1780.
POLITICA L. Art. 12. Fails : addressed to the Landholders, Stockholders,
Merchants, Farmers, Manufacturers, Tradesmen, Proprietors of every Description, and generally to all the Subjects of Great Britain and Ireland. 8vo. 2 s. Johnson, &c. 1780. *HIS, as the title imports, is not a pamphlet of SPECULATION,
but of BUSINESS,--business of the most serious and important aspect, with regard to the political welfare of this community. It bears reference to one of the greatest objects of government ;-the ceconomical application of the public revenue ; for without Eco. NOMY it is impossible for even the mightiest States and EMPIRES, any more than private families and individuals, to sublift, with any pro1pect of durability. As Disorder is always followed by Distress, so wherever WASTE and EMBEZZLÉMENT prevail, Poverty and Ruin are inseparably in their train: nor is it polüble for human policy to divide companions who, in the unalterable nature of things, are eternally united.
The Falls here brought forward, to the general view, relate merely to the expenditure of the public money. Our Authors (for this tract is supposed to be the production of more than one hand, or one head] have avoided to take notice of the thameful abuses which prevail in the receipt of the revenue, and in the manner of accounting for it.' The waite and plunder,' it is added, of the public money under these heads, are not of a less magnitude, or of smaller importance, than the abuses in the expenditure. But they deserve a separate discussion, and Mall have it; if it hall appear that the intelligence here communicated is welcome to the public, and serves at all to rouse them to a sense of their wrongs, and to resolutions of obtaining justice.
The representations here made, are professedly founded on the Duke of Richmond's and Lord Shelburne's celebrated motions in the House of Lords, Dec. 7th and 5th, asserting the prodigality and waste of the national treasure, and urging the indispensable necessity of immediately applying the remedies proper for a disorder so imminently dangerous to the body politic The rectitude of those [rhree) motions is first considered and evinced, by way of preliminary discourse; and then the Authors proceed to state, in
Chap. II. The charges of the present war,-in order to demonftrate the proposition which stands at the head of the chapter, viz. that nothing can more forcibly prove the extreme necessity of the pro. posed reformation, than an exhibition of the expence already in. curred by the war, even with the supposition that a peace had been fealed at Christmas 1779. The accuracy of the estimates must be
The Duke well observed, that profufion is not vigour ; that true ceconomy, by retrenching all useless expences, creates considence in government, gives energy to its exertions, and provides the means for their continuance.
taken for granted, as they appear to be drawn from authentic parliamentary documents; and the results are prodigious, indeed, - far exceeding all example of former administrations! The following is one of the conclusions bere deduced : Supposing the war to be continued (as Mr. Eden + says it probably will) for years, it cannot add less, every year, to our debt, chan THIRTEEN MILLIONS, exclusive of douceurs !
Chap. III. Gives us by way of contrast, the laudable example of the present administration of finance in France. The observations here made, on this topic, are grounded on the very commendable and highly popular ediets issued in October and December last; the language of which, from the mouth of a French monarch, cannot fail of itriking, with fingular force, the attention of every intelligent English reader.
Chap. IV. On the King's Civil Lil. For the incurred profufion in this department we refer to the pamphlet ; only observing, after our Authors, that not withiancing his Majesty's large appointment, in 1:50,- notwithstanding the vote of balf a million for the discharge of his debts, in 1769,-notwithstanding a further benevolence of 618,3401. for the fame purpose, in 1777, --notwithstanding these great overflowings of extraordinary supply,---yet, in the midit ofthe present expenfive war, the first Lord of the Treasury had the modely (our Authors' word) to propose an augmentation to his Majetty's Civil List of 100,000l. per ann !
Chap. V. Extraordinaries of the Army (here pointedly styled Lord North's Civil Lif). In Sect. I. we have a comparison of the present extraordinaries with those of former wars; in which the exceedings are truly alarming. It appears from the sums here put down, that the extraordinaries for four ycars only of the present war, amount to one million and a half sterling more than all the extraordinaries of King William's and Queen Anne's, and George the Second's first war together, which wars comprise the space of twenty-nine years!'
Seet. Il. On the Jums remitted to North America, of which no account has been given to parliament. Here is an account of near four miliions, for the years 1775, 1776, 1777, and 1778; the remittances for 1779 not being yet brought in. Beside the above-menai rioned fom, the pay of the army is also remitted to America by Messrs. Harley and Drummond. The remittances are sometimes made in Spanish or Portugal coin, and sometimes in English coin : the quantity of the latter exported is said to have alarmed the Bank of England.'
Sect. !II. and IV. Contraits. For the enormities under this head, we refer to the Faits' at large.
Seet. V. Bills drawn by Governors. More enormities, in a new mode of profufion.
Sect. VI. Extraordinary Appointments, and contingent Bills. The abuses under this head have allo che merit of novelty.
Se&. VII. Presents to Indians. This felion affords indubitable. evidence that tomahawks and scalping-knives are very expensive articles.
+ ln his Letter to Lord Carlille. See our last month's Review, P. 471.
Cha P. Chap. VI. Ordnance Estimates, Here, for the sake of brevity, fthe Reviewers economy) we mut again' refer.
Chap. VII. Navy Debt. (Lord Sandwich's Civil Lif). This branch of our public Debt is here stated at 8 012,415 t. of which the increase of lalt year only was 2,833,4151. For the articles of extravagance, and of abuses, enumerated in this chapter, we must, fur. ther, desire our readers to consult she book. 5 Chap. VIII. Remarks on Lord North's Method of raising Money by Loans. Here the Minister is charged with making contracts, and borrowing money, on higher terms than necediiy required. The detriment to the public, under this head, will appear terrifying, indeed, to those who do not think, with some gentlemen in adminiftration, that the resources of this country are inexhaustible.
In conclufion, the public fpirited writers observe, that if, in this our alarming situation, many words are necessary to excite us to vigorous and decisive exertions, we have already survived the liberties of our country. - -We are now arrived at a period when either corraption molt be thoroughly purged from the senate, or the nation is undone. If no remaining remedy can be found, by which this pertlence can be quietly removed-actum est de republica. Let us fix the mark of the plague upon the doors of the house, and then-let him that will die of the infection, enter.' Art. 13. The Yorkshire Question, or Petition, or Address : Being
à fort and fair State of the Care, on the Principles, the Views, the Means, and the Objects of both Parties, as confested by them felves. Most earnestly and seriously addressed to the Conlideration of the People of England, affembled in their feveral County, City, and other Meetings. 8vo. 2d. Almon.
Considering Mr. Smelt's Tory principles, as avowed in bis famous speech at the lace Yorkshire meeting, as congenial with the common sentiments of the party who call themselves ibe King's Friends, - the Whiggith Author of this little pamphlet has given us his comment on the pasages here referred to, and has, very properly, exploded the principles of despotism with which they are obvioudly pregnant.-An account of Mr. Smelt's character and conne&tions is prefixed, and his speech, at length, is annexed.
This little, bus seasonable, tract is of more importance than many of our political publications of greater bulk and higher price. On the whole, the friends of liberty will deem themselves much obliged to Mr. Smelt for his openness and honesty, whatever those of the coari-party may think of his discretion. We are credibly informed that a shrewd Yorkshire freeholder, who was present at the time whea this luckless oration was delivered, could not forbear exclaiming, in a loud whisper to his neighbour, who itood at his elbow -" E'faith! “ this meaiter what's his name has letten the car out o'th'bag!"
He was formerly sub-governor to the present Prince of Wales ; is still, according to this pamphlet, in high favour ar court, parci. cularly with bis Majetty.
Art. Art. 14. An Address to the Frecholders of Middlesex, assembled
at Free Mason's Tavern, in Great Queen Street, Dec. 20, 1779. Being the Day appointed for a Meeting of the Freeholders, for the Purpose of ettablishing Meetings to maintain and fupport the Freedom of Election. 8vo. 6d. Dixwell, &c.
The Author of this address is a close thinker, and a sound reasoner. His observations on county meetings are offered with a view to render foch assemblies of real, conftitutional, and permanent effect, for redress of pational grievances, and even, if occasion require, for a reformation of the constitution itself: the Writer's arguments are conceived with folidity, and urged with judgment and temper. Art. 15. The History of a French Louse; or the Spy of a new
Species, in France and England: containing a Description of the most remarkable Personages in those Kingdoms. Giving a Key to the chief Events of the Year 1779, and those which are to happen in 1780. Translated from the 4th Edition of the revised and cor. rected Paris Copy. 8vo. 35. Becket. 1779.
We gave some account of the French original (if the French was the original) of this political fatire, in our lati month's Catalogue. It is unnecessary to add any thing to what was then said concerning the character of the work.
Art. 16. Five Letters, &c. 8vo. 1 s. 6d. Dixwell. When this political mail was first made up, it contained but three letters; which, as the directions are rather long, we do not here repeat, being able to refer the reader to the Rev. vol. 1x. p. 322, where they are mentioned wish fome explanation of their contents. A few more are now put into the bag, under the fullowing superscriptions :
The fourth is addressed to the monied men of Great Britain and Hol. land; upon ibe subject of opening 'a policy of subscription for the reduction of tbe Freneb islands in the West Indies. In return for which, the ab. folute property of these islands is to be guaranteed to ihe subscribers, upor ibe faitbof an a&t of parliament And the fifth is addressed to the nobility and landed interest of Scotland; upon the futjet of appropriating tbe forfeited eftates of ibai kingdom 10 ibe purpose of maintaining five thousand men as a militia ; who, when not embodied, are to be employed in working upon the high roads and other public works of that kingdom. To which is added, some remarks upon Sir Charles Bunburys scheme of sending the convias to obe coast of Africa, and upon the present one in agitation, of creating work and talk houses in the different counties of England. Wirb fome queries addressed to the Lord Lieutenants of the dif. ferent counties, upon the present establishment of the militia.
For the British parliament to grant French islands de jure, before they are in poffeffion de faao, is a species of anticipation, charac. ierised in ancient saws, as reckoning chickens before they are hatched; and as selling the bear's skin, &c. Such formal annur. ciation of intended conquests, calculated to inspire preparations for attack, would in greater proportion warn the possessors how to defend themselves. But schemes appear, to the happy inventors, very feafible on paper.
On the subje& of English and Scots militia, and on the employmeat of convicts, the Writer throws our several good detached observa. Rev. Jan. 1780.
tions, not being altogether fo bold a visionary in domeftic policy, as he appears in bis foreign schemes and arrangements, Art. 17. Administration Difilled. In which the Grand Na
tional Culprits are laid open for the Public Inspection. 8vo. 45. fewed. Barker. 1779. This Direction is performed with a keen knife, and a bold hand. The malefactors being cut up, and exposed to public inspection, the metaphor drops in course; and we come, in plain terms, to speck of the book before us, as containing a political review of the present circumstances and situation of this country, so far as both have been obviously affected by the conduct of government, fince the commence, ment of the unfortunate war with the American colonies.-The Authors (for this tract appears, like our Review, as the wosk of severat hands) have entered on the discusion of the subject, on a large scale of enquiry ; cxtending to almost every principal branch of adminiftration. Their general conclusion is - That the remedies, which it were to be wished his majesty (feeling for the distresses of his people) would instantaneously apply to our wretched and desponding atuation,' are obviously these :
'I. A dismission of every principal mirifter now employed.
As it has often been urged, by the adherents of migistry, when objeĉting to a change, that we can no where find more able, or bet. . ter men,' our Authors treat this objection as frivolous and false, They contend, that nothing is wanting to extricate us out of our dificulties but GENIUS. In this MASTER QUALITY, the spirited writers consider our present statesmen and commanders as totally des ficient. To prove that genius has, at all times, and in all coantries, been found perfectly equal to the great work here cut out for it, ous Authors enter into an historical detail of the illustrious actions of heaven-born leaders and heroes, in the military line especie ally; and they conclude, that genius is still to be found, if we will but call it forth. And to direct us in the search of this inestimable jewel; they point to our present race of senators, among whom may be found men of whom the greatest hopes may reasonably be formed, if we dare to entrust them with our political salvation. In the house of lords they have fingled out, in the following order, lord Lyttelton (deceased since our Authors wrote), lord Camden, the duke of Richmond, lord Shelburne, the duke of Grafton, and the marquis of Rockingham. In the lower house, our Authors fix upon, brit, Mr. Fox; on whose superior abilities, indeed, the highest expectations may reasonably be raised. To this distinguished name they have added those of Mr. Burke, and colonel Barré; and here they ftop, presuming it 'unneceffary to go through the list of men in the lower assembly, whose genius and parts are capable of fuccouring their country.' We wonder, however, that the justly honoured name of Sir George Saville escaped this mark of diflinction.
• Both fufficiently pointed out in the book.