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the most prolific source of profit to the annually have been repealed since the apothecary or attorney; but, unfor- battle of Waterloo, of which thirtytunately, the principle of self-govern- eight millions were remitted by the ment is thought to be applicable to Tory Governments, from 1815 to 1831, the public concerns of the state ; all and about seven millions by the Whig men are supposed by nature to be administration since that time. Now, born ready-made legislators; and the what was required to have kept up the most complicated and difficult subject sinking fund at a proper level, and to of human study is held to be capable have rendered Great Britain at this of instant acquisition by every person moment almost disburdened of public who can read a newspaper.
debt ? Nothing but to have kept on It is in this fatal delusion that the about ten millions of indirect taxes true cause of the present disastrous above the expenditure. Such a sum, state of our finances is to be found. steadily applied with its growing interest The Reform Bill has practically to the reduction of debt, would have vested the administration of affairs, been now paying off nearly thirty miland especially of the financial concerns lions a-year, and we would already have of the nation, in the masses of the paid off above four hundred millions of people ; and Schedule A. having the public debt. What was requisite effectually closed the gates in future to have attained this great and all-imagainst the whole race of professional portant object ? Nothing but to have and real informed statesmen, the go- kept on the duties on beer, spirits, invernment has had no alternative but habited houses, and foreign wines. The to live on from day to day, without aggregate of these taxes, the repeal of ever looking to the future, and to which has produced no sensible benefit bring forward such measures only to the community, is above ten millions as were likely at the moment to prove sterling a-year * So far from either the acceptable to the people, without the comforts or moral habits of the people slightest regard to their ultimate ef- being injured by such taxes being kept fects, or the permanent advantage on, it may safely be affirmed that both of the state. On no other principle would have been greatly improved. is it possible to account for the facts, The inordinate passion for intoxication that while in 1816, at the close of a would not have taken so fatal a hold as war of two-and-twenty years duration, it has now done of the working classes, we had a sinking fund of thirteen because ardent spirits would not bave millions annually to apply to the re- been placed so completely within their duction of debt, we have now, after reach; and, while their innocent and five-and-twenty years of profound substantial comforts would have been peace, and the duplication of all our unimpaired, not only would the national national resources, not only no sink. burdens have now been reduced to a ing fund at all, but an actual deficit comparative trifle, but all branches of of a million sterling annually. Is this industry would have been sustained and a sample of the capacities of the vivified, by the public securities being masses for the great duties of self- permanently kept above par. All these government ? this a proof of the
incalculable benefits have now been lost, great foresight and sagacity of popular and the nation reduced, after five-andadministration ? If these are to be twenty years of peace, to the verge of taken as a specimen of the results insolvency, not from any real deficiency of the great democratic changes of of funds to put the finances in the most the present day, they are certainly flourishing condition, but from these remore disheartening than any that their sources having been thrown away by bitterest enemy ever ventured to pre
successive statesmen, in consequence of dict.
clamour raised by the Whigs and Li
Nearly forty-five millions of taxes but the Whigs, who used that as a berals, and the culpable habit of look. stalking-horse whereon to carry on ing to nothing but present popularity their assaults against the Tory Adminiand the means of getting over the exist. strations, and went on, year after year, ing session of parliament.
inflaming the minds of the people by We do not deny that the Tory Ad- exaggerated representations of the evils ministrations, from 1815 to 1830, must of servitude, and the blessings of liberty stand responsible to posterity for some to savage man, till at last they worked share of the blame, in consequence the nation up to a perfect paroxysm of of the eep wounds which in- philanthropic fervour and benevolent flicted on the sinking-fund, and the insanity, until in an evil hour the enormous repeal which they made of fatal act was consummated, and the indirect taxes, from the desire to obtain ruinous gift of immediate freedom was temporary popularity without any re- conferred upon eight hundred thousand gard to ultimate consequences. But Africans, not yet reclaimed from savage what we rest upon is this, that it was the life, and wholly unfit to receive it? clamour for economy and reduction of tax- It won't do for the Whigs, therefore, ation raised by the Whigs, and re-echoed to endeavour now to escape from the by the whole Liberal and democratic responsibility of their own deeds, and party throughout the country for the to throw the blame of the present dislast thirty years, which drove the Tory astrous condition of the country upon Government into these ruinous con- their political opponents. History has cessions; and, therefore, that it is the recorded their efforts, and they must Whig party, and the principle of self- abide the consequences.
They degovernment, which is really responsible stroyed the sinking fund by the clafor all the disastrous changes which mour which they raised against inhave now rendered the debt a hopeless direct taxes which injured no one, and burden, and landed the nation in almost therefore they are responsible for the admitted insolvency. The Whigs are present burden of the public debt; they very willing now to blame the Tories destroyed the old constitution, and for giving way to the loud and almost therefore they are responsible for all universal cry for reduction of taxation, the weakness and imbecility of the one raised by them from 1820 to 1830, and which they have substituted in its for yielding to which they at the time room ; they destroyed slavery in the praised the liberal Tory ministers to the West Indies, and therefore they are
But the justice of history responsible for all the burdens and diswill dispel the illusion, and hold the asters consequent upon premature Whig party responsible for the whole emancipation of the negroes; they deof these reductions, which originated in stroyed the Protestant constitution of the clamour which they raised, just the empire, and therefore they are reas it will hold the principle of self go- sponsible for all the blessings of vernment and the Reform Bill respon- O'Connell and his tail, and the raising sible for the present woeful condition of a fierce cry for a dismemberment of of the finances and hopeless state of the the empire by the faction who practipublic debt.
cally rule the government. The Whig advocates will doubtless If any additional proof were want. reply, that great part of the public debt ing of the total ruin to the financial which has grown up under their ad- prospects of the empire, which has ministration, has been owing to the arisen from the ascendency given to the twenty millions which was paid as a masses, and the ruinous principle of selfcompensation to the West Indian government, it would be found in the proprietors. But here, again, the extraordinary step regarding the Postsame difficulty occurs; and this burden Office, which Government have deemis found to be directly owing to the ed it necessary to adopt in the last delusive principles of the same political session of Parliament. The sums reparty. Who was it that raised the cry ceived from the Post-Office, in the for instant negro emancipation, and cut year ending 5th January 1839, were short the slow and safe progress of L.2,531,217, of which the net profit, natural restoration to liberty, and pre- after deducting the charges of colleccipitated, in three years, a change tion, was L.1,656,953. Every body which could hardly have been safely knows, that although the nation has accomplished in three centuries? Who enjoyed five-and-twenty years of al
most uninterrupted peace, yet the po. public life, and spend the next thirty litical horizon is now in almost every years in retirement, than lend the supquarter overshadowed with clouds, and port of his name, in any shape, to a that nothing short of a miracle can measure so ruinous to the present secupreserve the continuance of these pa- rity, and fatal to the ultimate public cific relations for any considerable credit of the country. Lord Meltime longer. We have recently had bourne said, on the same subject, in a fierce civil war in Canada—the West the House of Lords, that the experiIndies are in such a state of discon- ment was undoubtedly a very dangertent as to require a large force, civil ous one, and that he really did not and military, for their protection—a know how the deficiency which would gigantic and most costly war has been be occasioned in the public revenue was commenced in the East Indies, and to be made up; but that the people the British arms carried up into the were impatient for the reduction, and heart of Asia—the chances of a con. he supposed it was necessary to yield test both in the Baltic and Mediterra. to their wishes. These two declaranean are hourly increasing—while the tions may be regarded as tests of the turbulent state of the country, excited old and new race of statesmen-of by the experienced failure of the Re- those who governed the country in förm Bill, has rendered it painfully ap- times past, and those who are governed parent that a large increase of our by it in times present. There is no domestic force is unavoidable. The one declaration of Sir Robert Peel's effect of these approaching difficulties for which we so highly honour him, or is already felt in the admitted excess which will go so far to redeem his of L.950,000 of expenditure last year character from the imputation of unabove the income. And yet, with due yielding to popular clamour, which such a bankrupt exchequer, and such attached to the earlier parts of his poenormous charges staring us in the litical career. He may now see what face, this is the moment that Govern- are the consequences of conciliation ment have thought fit to throw away and concession, and of the vain attempt at least a million a-year by the sub- to disarm democratic hostility by anstitution of a penny for the ordinary ticipating its wishes, or yielding to postage, and thereby rendered it a its demands. Better, far better for matter of perfect certainty that in the the Conservative party to remain for next, and probably in every succced- years out of power, than to tarnish ing year, the annual deficiency will be their reputation by any further contwo millions sterling !
cessions to a ceaseless demand for a So prodigal and culpable a waste of reduction of taxation, which is as inpublic money as this, at such a time, tent upon present gain as it is blind 10 and with such necessity for a surplus ultimate ruin. The night is far spent, revenue existing, from so many concur- the morning is at hand. They may rely ring dangers, is perhaps unparalleled in upon it the period is not far distant, the history of the world, and can be when this total disregard of the future, explained on no other principle than which has characterised all the Governthis, that the ascendency given to the ments of Great Britain since 1830, will masses by the Reform Bill has ren- land the nation in some grievous pubdered any thing like a systematic or lic calamity; and that when that period real government impracticable in the does arrive, the light will at once break country, and that the wretched admi- in upon a benighted people, and the nistration which has arisen out of the storm of indignation which will fall confusion it produced, has no other on the heads of those who have been resource but to barter a few months of instrumental in bringing about such lingering existence against the present misfortunes will be irresistible. The solvency and ultimate independence of passport to public favour will then be, the empire.
not to have supported but resisted these Sir Robert Peel declared, in his ruinous reductions; and the nation, place in the House of Commons, that taught by the experience of suffering, even if he stood alone, he would pro- will regard as her only true friends, test in the loudest manner against this those who had the courage to oppose uncalled-for and ruinous dilapidation them when they were wrong, and disof the public income; and that he regard their censure when it arose would rather retire altogether from from ignorance.
TEN THOUSAND A-YEAR!
[To the Editor of Blackwood's Magazine. Sir,- If
you should be so well satisfied with this, the first part of a short series of papers, as to insert it in your far-famed Magazine, not having been deterred from perusing it by the frank avowal that its writer is utterly
to fortune and to fame unknown,” he will gladly transmit you the remainder of the series, as you may desire. If, on the contrary, it should not come up to your mark, your courtesy will, he is sure, induce you to return him the MS., addressed as beneath, to be left at Mr Cadell's in the Strand, where the writer will call for it, after the appearance, without this paper, of your November Number.--Z.
-, near London, 14th July, 1839.
Our correspondent, whose modest note we have taken the liberty of printing above, as we received it, will, we trust, in good time, send us Part II.; and also enable us to communicate with him confidentially.-C. N.]
ABOUT ten o'clock one Sunday broken slumber, till the moment at. morning, in the month of July 183“, which he is presented to the reader. the dazzling sunbeams which had for He lay for several minutes, stretching, many hours irradiated a little dismal yawning, and sighing, occasionally back attic in one of the closest courts casting an irresolute eye towards the adjoining Oxford Street, in London, tiny fireplace, where lay a modicum and stimulated with their intensity of wood and coal, with a tinder-box the closed eyelids of a young man
and a match or two placed upon the lying in bed, at length awoke him. hob, so that he could easily light his He rubbed his eyes for some time, to fire for the purposes of shaving and relieve himself from the irritation he breakfasting; He stepped at length experienced in them; and yawned and lazily out of bed, and when he felt liis stretched his limbs with a heavy sense feet, again yawned and stretched himof weariness, as though his sleep had self, then he lit his fire, placed his bit not refreshed him. He presently cast of a kettle on the top of it, and rehis eyes on the heap of clothes lying turned to bed, where he lay with his huddled together on the backless eye fixed on the fire, watching the chair by the bedside, and where he crackling blazeinsinuate itself through had hastily flung them about an hour the wood and coal. Once, however, after midnight ; at which time he had it began to fail, so he had to get up returned from a great draper's shop and assist it by blowing and bits of in Oxford Street, where he served paper; and it seemed in so precarious as a shopman, and where he had nearly a state that he determined not again dropped asleep after a long day's work, to lie down, but sit on the bedside, as while in the act of putting up the he did with his arms folded, ready to shutters. He could hardly keep his resume operations if necessary. In eyes open while he undressed, short this posture he remained for some time, as was the tim e it took him to do so; watching his little fire, and listlessly and on dropping exhausted into bed, listening to the discordant jangling of there he had
continued in deep un- innumerable church-bells, clamorously
ht wil at uted pepe tion which is
calling the citizens to their devotions. cast an eye towards the bit of fracturWhat passed through his mind was ed looking-glass that hung against the something like the following: - wall, and which, by faithfully repre
“ Heigho!-Oh, Lord! —Dull as senting to him a by no means plain ditch water _ This is my only holi- set of features (dispite the dismal hue day, yet I don't seem to enjoy it-the of his hair) whenever he chose to fact is, I feel knocked up with my appeal to it, had afforded bim more week's work.–Lord, what a life mine enjoyment than any other object in the is, to be sure! Here am I, in my eight- world for years.
is Ah, Lord ! many and-twentieth year, and for four long and many's the fine gal I've done my years have been one of the shopmen at best to attract the notice of, while I Dowlas, Tag-rag, Bobbin and Com- was serving her in the shop,—that is, pany's—slaving from seven o'clock in when I've seen her get out of a carthe morning till ten at night, and all riage! There has been luck to many for a salary of £35 a.year, and my a chap like me, in the same line of board! And Mr Tag-rag is always speculation ; look at Tom Tarnishtelling me how high he's raised my how did he get Miss Twang, the rich salary! Thirty-five pounds a-year is piano-forte maker's daughter ?-and all I have for lodging, and appearing now he's cut the shop, and lives at like a gentleman! Oh, Lord, it can't Hackney like a regular gentleman! last; for sometimes I feel getting des- Ah! that was a stroke! But some how, perate—such strange thoughts ! Seven it hasn't answered with me yet: the shillings a-week do I pay for this gals don't take! Lord, how I have set cursed hole-(he uttered these words my eyes and ogled them—all of them with a bitter emphasis, accompanied don't seem to dislike the thing—and by a disgustful look round the little sometimes they'll smile, in a sort of room)—that one couldn't swing a cat way that says I'm safe--but 'tis no in without touching the four sides! - use, not a bit of it!— My eyes! catch Last winter, three of our gents. (i. e. me, by the way, ever nodding again to his fellow-shopmen) came to tea with a lady on the Sunday, that had smiled me one Sunday night; and bitter cold when I stared at her while serving as it was, we four made this d-d dogher in the shop-after what happened hole so hot, we were obliged to open the to me a month or two ago in the Park! window !- And as for accommoda- Didn't I feel like damaged goods, just tions--I recollect I had to borrow two then! But, it's no matter, women are so nasty chairs from the people below, different at different times!— Verylikely who on the next Sunday borrowed my Imismanaged the thing.-By the way, only decanter, in return, and, hang what a precious puppy of a chap the them, cracked it! - Curse me, if this fellow was that came up to her at the life is worth having! It's all the very time she stepped out of her carriage to vanity of vanities, and no mistake! walk a bit! As for good looks-cut Fag, fag, fag, all one's days, and me to ribbons"-another glance at what for? Thirty-five pounds a-year, the glass—"no; I an't afraid there, and · no advance 1' Bah, bells ! ring neither-but,_heigh-ho! I suppose away till you're all cracked !—Now he was, as they say, born with a golden do you think I'm going to be mewed spoon in his mouth, and had never so up in church on this the only day out many thousand a-year, to make up of the seven I've got to sweeten my- him for never so few brains! He was self in, and sniff fresh air ?
uncommon well dressed though, I cious joke that would be !- Whew! must own.
What trowsers! - they after all, I'd as lieve sit here ; for stuck so natural to him, he might have what's the use of my going out? Every been born in them. And his waistbody I see out is happy, excepting me, coat, and satin stock-what an air! and the poor chaps that are like me!- And yet, his figure was nothing very Every body laughs when they see me, out of the way! His gloves, as white and know that I'm only a tallow-faced as snow; I've no doubt he wears a counter-jumper, for whom its no use pair of them a day-my stars! that's to go out !--Oh, Lord! what's the three and sixpence a-day, for don't I use of being good-looking, as some know what they cost ?- Whew! if I chaps say I am?"_Here he instinct- had but the cash to carry on that sort ively passed his left hand through a of thing !- And when he'd seen her profusion of sandy-coloured hair, and into her carriage--the horse he got