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tion, consequent upon dissension, and inactivity, the offspring of indecision. Only divert the populace from them, who, when roused, carry all before them, as it were, and force their leaders to bury their dissensions-only deprive them of that support, and then you see the intrinsic worth of your Whig statesman. He may carry, perhaps, one bold measure; but his title to succeeding years of administration rests upon the gratitude of his supporters. He is unable to carry those minor measures-those measures of equal public importance, though of a less conspicuous character-more solid though less showy-which contribute so much to the moral happiness and physical enjoyment of a great nation, and which are the pillars of a statesman's fame. There is no firmness in a Whig ruler-there cannot be, if he would reconcile and command the confidence of all the various sects of his followers. Who was it that held with a firm and steady hand the helm of England, when all other Continental nations were submerged in ruin? A Conservative statesman. No Whig Minister could have succeeded then. The utmost firmness and steadiness in conducting the public business of this country were then required. No Whig Cabinet could have guided the fortunes of England then. Obliged to truckle first to this man's fancies, then to another's follies, they are but a faithful index of the dissension amongst their followers, and uncertainty and irresolution are sure to follow. Yet to such as these are our fortunes, in times so perilous as our own, committed; and already are the baneful effects visible. If the Conservative party were to pursue the course which the Opposition of former days is known to have taken, what would be the position of the Government? If their opponents were not to support them in the war, the conduct of it would be in the same position as all the other measures which they have brought forward this session, and for the success of which they are dependent upon their followers. Such a state of affairs may continue for a time, but it must eventually call down the indignation of the country. No wonder that the conduct of our Government constantly gives

rise to the suspicion that they are too desirous for the cessation of hostilities. It is manifestly their interest so to appear, if it be not also so to act. A peace, even though it were merely an armed truce, would satisfy the cravings of many of their followers; and probably the belief that such may be obtained, renders them less disagreeable to the Government than they would otherwise have proved themselves.

Never, perhaps, was the inability of the Whig party to govern exhibited in such a marked manner as at the period immediately succeeding the passing of the Reform Bill. With a majority of three hundred, they yet disagreed amongst themselves concerning the desirability of introducing innovations into the Irish Church, and they fell. Some have declared that an excess of power-a majority too large to manage-was fatal to the endurance of their power. We rather think that it was but a conclusive proof that a Whig Minister must be a Minister on sufferance-in other words, is unable to govern. Unhappily for themselves, at the period to which we are alluding, a rather more important question than usual occasioned the schism. Those who disagreed did not merely, as generally happens in these cases, hold aloof for a time, embarrass the Government, and then return to their allegiance, but they went at once into open hostility. They retired to swell the Conservative ranks. This is a specimen, on an exaggerated scale perhaps, of what is constantly occurring when a Whig Ministry is in power. For what do we see now? We behold the Conservative party united in their opinions with_regard to Russian aggression upon Turkey. In the Ministerial host there is nothing, as usual, but dissension and endless disagreement. The Manchester party condemns the war and everything belonging to it. The Peelites evidently look with a cold eye upon it; they believe not in the vitality of Turkey, or in the danger of Russian aggrandisement. So far there is agreement between these sects. They cannot, however, form one party, for there is disagreement between them on vital points connected with Home administration. Then, again, there


expected. Again, if all these misdirected and misapplied talents be controlled by an incapable chief, can it be said that their administrative abilities are placed at service of the country? No! personal pique and private considerations prevent it. We need not dwell upon the incapability of the First Lord of the Treasury, which is now generally admitted. We now look to the other prominent members of the Government. The office assigned to Lord Palmerston is the most notoriously incongruous. With a world-wide reputation for his administration of our foreign affairs, gained in an experience of them for sixteen years, his lordship is placed in an office where he may exercise his negotiative powers with county magistrates, town constables, and the like. There he is-the most popular Foreign Secretary of the day, the man in whom the country has perhaps as great a confidence as in any one, engaged in squabbles over town police, graveyards, sewers, and the rest. Lord Palmerston cannot be said to be at home in his office. The country is disposed to look with favour upon him on account of his great name and services; but does he really make a better Home Secretary than Mr Walpole? Why was he not transferred to the War Office on its creation, with his extensive knowledge of European affairs? If the interests of the country had been consulted, undoubtedly he would; but again private considerations were opposed to the national will and the public weal; and the Duke of Newcastle, who has as yet no claims to public confidence, is placed in an office to which, on the formation of the Government, it cannot be said that he was assigned. Again, there is Sir George Grey, who is adapted more especially to the Home Office, if to any; but, "being more remarkable for his private virtues than his administrative abilities," is certainly not the man to be unceremoniously pitchforked into an office with which he has no acquaintance, other than the little he is supposed to have learnt during the "disastrous administration of Lord Glenelg." If there are talents here-if there is experience here--as in Lord Palmerston's case, so in this; the experience

is rendered nothing worth, and the talents misapplied. It is unnecessary to dilate further upon this subject; let us look at the blessings derived to the country from the administrative abilities of those whose talents have not been misdirected. There is our gifted Chancellor of the Exchequer, who has made more mistakes within a given time than any of his predecessors in the past century; and when we remember that financial blunders are national misfortunes, it is no matter of wonder that people refuse to regard him with an eye of favour, even though we overlook the probable pernicious effects of his Tractarian tendencies over the Church of England, felt through his influence over the disposal of the Church patronage. How long will England, dazzled by names, overlook facts and their consequences? Divest the members of the Government of their previous reputation, of their great names-give them names unknown to the country, and what language sufficiently strong would be found to apply to such an incapable Administration, with all their blunders, their dissensions, and their disastrous speculations? Had Lord Derby and his colleagues committed half the blunders of this Cabinet had they attempted to tamper recklessly with our finances had they involved us in a war which might have been avoided by sufficient plain-speaking in negotiation, what would their opponents have said? Would we have witnessed the patriotic course which we have seen the Opposition of the present day adopt? Few would suppose it, when they recall to mind the undignified hurry which the Opposition manifested for office during the brief period which elapsed between the assembling of Parliament in November 1852 and the Christmas vacation—a restlessness which induced them all to combine together, Whig, Radical, and Peelite, High Church and Dissent, in order to overthrow the Administration of the day; while their unredeemed compact with the Roman Catholics will not easily be forgotten. Few would suppose it, when they recall to mind the course adopted by the Whig Opposition during the last war, when, for factious purposes, victories were repre

sented as defeats, the movements of the British general rendered the battlefield of party strife at home, and the motions of the Government clogged by the hands of unprincipled and factious opponents. Few would suppose it, when they recollect that Whig alacrity to accept office is only equalled by Conservative disdain to hold it on sufferance. But what was the conduct of the Government of Lord Derby? Is not that Government now admitted to have been the instrument of more good to the country, in its short tenure of office, than was ever effected by any of its predecessors within so short a time? And if we remember the immense amount of opposition which was brought to bear against it; that, in the first few months of its existence, the completion of the business of Parliament, previous to its dissolution, was all that was expected or required at its hands; that, after the dissolution, a majority of nineteen effected, though with the greatest difficulty, the overthrow of the Administration, without allowing the smallest time for the trial of their legislative powers, it must be admitted that the members of that Conservative Government, in the face of the greatest difficulties, exhibited administrative abilities of a high order. They were unable, from circumstances, to take advantage, like their successors, of the tide of popular favour which in these days is sure to run in the direction of a new Administration, because they were only expected to wind up, as quickly as they could, the Parliamentary business of the session. Yet to them may be traced the advantages we possessed in preparation for the present war. They were the first Government who dared to come down to the British House of Commons, and tell it the national defences were insecure, and demand the means of placing England in a position to resist any threatened invasion. Do we not owe to them the establishment of our militia? Was not that a bill than which none has been more perfect in its details, or more universally satisfactory to the country? Do we not owe to them the establishment of our Channel Fleet on such a footing that it secured England from all aggression? Then was laid the basis of that splendid fleet which

a few months back left our shores for the Baltic Sea. Again, it is to their prescience that we can trace the advantages which are derived to ourselves, and to the cause of civilisation and independence, from our present amicable relations with France. Did they not, in opposition to the popular will, unequivocally expressed, and in the face of the utmost censure of the press, persist in cultivating the friendship of France? To that firmness and political sagacity we trace the advantages we derive from having so power ful a friend by whose side to fight in the cause of Europe. Contrast this with the conduct of that brilliant Administration which was to rescue England from the evil position into which it was brought by the reckless Derby Government, and what do we find? Two members of that Government, immediately on taking office, commence their abuse of the French Emperor in no measured terms. Nor is this all: Their brilliant opponent, who was naturally desirous to bring such a glaring indiscretion before the notice of the Commons of England, was charged by the triumphant Coalition with having a mind deeply imbued with faction. The like absence of political sagacity is observable throughout the whole course of the Government. With a war staring us in the face, which ought to have appeared almost inevitable to the Government, with their superior information and knowledge of facts, the Chancellor of the Exchequer brings forward a Peace Budget, parting with an important item in our revenue. This was another blow levelled against the agricultural interest through the indiscretion of the Government, for it resulted in soap being relieved at the expense of malt. Our discreet Chancellor parts with a quantity of revenue derived from indirect taxation one year, and redeems his blunder the next by levying an increased tax on malt. But what are we to expect from a Chancellor of the Exchequer whose administration of the finances has been one continued system of blunders? The secret lies in this: All his various failings arise from his having entered upon schemes in which, as he proceeded, he soon found himself out of his depth. Another minister would have been deterred from

entering upon them, from a sense of the responsibility he would incur. But when a Ministry fancies it contains within itself all the available administrative talent in the Empire, the sense of responsibility is lightened, because opponents are undervalued, and selfconfidence augmented. Here, again, do all the other misdemeanours of the Cabinet take their origin. Confident in themselves, and in their fancied influence over Parliament, they bring forward, in the face of war, a larger number of important measures than ever before were introduced to Parliament in the same session. They only exhibited their own weakness. They proved that their plans of legislation differ materially from those of the House of Commons. They discovered that even all the talents cannot blunder with impunity, and they have rapidly sunk in public estimation. Their conduct has disgusted their followers, and provoked a powerful opposition. Their numerous indiscretions would certainly not have been tolerated in any men but our talented rulers in the Coalition; and even they are suffering from the effects of their rashness, but nevertheless seem determined to "survive in office the honour of their administration." ferring, again, to the Derby Government of 1852, we ask if the Earl of Malmesbury, or any two important members of that Administration, had been afflicted with a like absence of political sagacity to that displayed by Sir James Graham and Sir Charles Wood, where would have been our relations with France? If that Government had, for the sake of the popularity which Sir James Graham values so much, but which no Minister has been so unfortunate in his attempt to gain, joined in the temporary popular resentment against the French Emperor, when would the breach have been healed? But they showed that they understood the interests of the country, and contrast in a favourable light with the members of the Coalition and their misdeeds. They evidently were aware of the deep responsibility under which they lay, and thus their actions were marked with a caution which is not observed by their successors. If Mr Disraeli had not handed over a large balance to his rival, what would


have been the effect of the failure of his schemes? It comes to this, then: The forethought and prudence of the Derby Government have only had the effect of shielding the Coalition from the worst consequences of their indiscretions and total failures, and enabling the country to withstand the mal - administration of its present rulers, instead of being improved and brought to be of permanent advantage to the nation. It may, however, be thought to be a great drawback to Conservative reascendancy, that the leaders of that great party are, for the most part, comparatively inexperienced in office. However that may be, the administration of ten months' duration stands out in broad relief between its predecessor and the Coalition; at all events, it would be difficult for them to commit more blunders than the present talented and experienced Administration. But can a charge of inability be fairly urged against a party which contains within its ranks men of such talent, parliamentary experience, and sagacity as the Earl of Derby, Lord St Leonards, Lord Eglinton, Disraeli, Walpole, Thesiger, Kelly, Pakington, Malmesbury, Bulwer Lytton, Stanley, Manners, and the other Conservative statesmen? The year 1852 must, in the eyes of thinking men, for ever dispel such an imputation. The same party which, shorn of its leaders in 1846, yet sent forward to maintain its cause in that "sad fierce session" its champions in debate, so many and so powerful as to astonish its foes and restore spirit amongst its ranks, produced also, in time of need, statesmen whose official career, short though it was, does no discredit to their followers-the gentlemen of England. The chiefs in either House, in particular, are men of brilliant talent and tried sagacity. Trained in the Liberal ranks, it may be presumed that they are deeply convinced of the danger of continually seeking after that phantom, which, the nearer we approach, the farther it recedes-viz., a system of representation which shall do justice to all parties in the State; while, at the same time, that very training has divested them of that spirit of exclusion, and that horror of anything approaching to innovation, which were

the chief imputations against the Toryism of bygone times, but which do not accord with the intelligence of the present age. The Earl of Derby, as every one knows, was a member of that Cabinet which secured the reform of Parliament. He has since been engaged in endeavouring, and not unsuccessfully, to stem the tide of democracy which then set in. For that end he joined Sir Robert Peel-for that end he left him. Mr Disraeli, too, awakening to a full sense of the danger which "the youthful energies of Radicalism" are too well calculated to produce, became a decided Conservative, though not a bigoted exclusionist. To these principles he has steadily adhered in the whole course of his parliamentary career, which has now spread over a term of seventeen years. No man needs to stand higher in the estimation of his party than does the member for Buckinghamshire. Gifted with talents which fall to the lot of but few, possessed of keen sagacity, indomitable resolution, and extensive knowledge, he has never shrunk from placing at the service of his country, and of the great party of which he is the recognised chieftain, the utmost efforts of his admired and envied genius. Where is the man who has more unflinchingly stood by his party at all seasons, both of adversity and prosperity? His rapid elevation has, no doubt, been viewed by many with feelings of dissatisfaction; for

"Envy does merit, as its shade, pursue." It is evident that he has also many personal enemies. The man who overthrew a Government which many supposed would have continued during the lifetime of its leader, and even have survived him, is not likely to be regarded with any especial favour by the members of that Cabinet. The uncompromising hostility which he bore to them has roused their utmost indignation, and his character has been unsparingly attacked. Some have had the sagacity to detect the cloven hoof in every step which he has made in public life; nor has he been allowed by them to possess the smallest particle of political virtue, and "one of the humblest individuals of this vast empire" has thought fit to embody his

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