« AnteriorContinuar »
ART. IX. Intelligence in Science, Literature, and the Arts. As our usual supply of foreign Magazines has not been received, we
shall not be able to give, at present, much interesting matter under this head. The sellers of books have experienced the distress which has fallen upon sellers of all other descriptions, in England; and a pressure upon the booksellers must, of course, fall ultimately upon the bookmakers.. We have seen one or two catalogues of books which are in a course of publication; and never perhaps was the list more meagre and uninteresting. If, however, the resumption of payments in specie at the Bank of England be a good omen, we have the news of that to console us;—though the same journals which brought the intelligence, contained also an account of the alarming riot in London.-We have no certain information respecting the literature of the continent; but, if we may judge from the pages of our latest English Magazines, the people of Europe are paying as much attention to the subject as is compatible with the situation in which the wars have left them. Periodical works are now established in almost every country; and it seems, at length, to be admitted on all hands, that the diffusion of knowledge is the only sure way to promote the happiness of mankind. America is not comparatively speakingbehind her sister continent. There is no set of works which, in our opinion, can form a distinct literature of our own; but, in almost every quarter, more attention, than has been usual, is now given to the subject; and we hope, before a century has passed, the people of the United States will be in a fair way of coming up with their brethren in Europe.
Our View of Boston was taken several years since; and though it does not, therefore, embrace every house which is now in sight from the place whence it was taken,-we believe it gives as adequate an idea of the town as, perhaps, can be given by any picture of the same description.
In our Number for January, of this year, we announced the publication of the first volume of Dr. Ramsay's History; and we have now the satisfaction of announcing that the whole is completed, by the publication of ne two other volumes.
102, 9, for eluthesia read elutheria.
105, 10, for callitexia read callilexia. in our present Nuo er, page 184, line 25, for from read form.
*** We ought to have mentioned, too, that there are some things in the Review of Jewitt's Narrative, which are not contained in the Narrative itself; though they are as authentic as any other part of the work; as we had them from the mouth of the narrator himself.
SOUNDNESS OF THE POLICY OF PROTECTING
FULLY ESTABLISHED BY
IN HIS LETTER TO BENJAMIN AUSTIN.
TO WHICH ARE ADDED,
EXTRACTS FROM THE ADDRESS OF THE AMERICAN SOCIETY
ESTABLISHED IN NEW YORK.
“Though it were true, that the immediate and certain effect of regulations controlling the competition of foreign with domestic fabrics, was an increase of price, it is universally true, that the contrary is the ultimate effect with every successful manufacture. When a domestic manufacture has attained to perfection, and has engaged in the prosecution of it a competent number of persons, it invariably becomes cheaper. . “The internal competition, which takes place, soon does away every thing like mono. poly, and by degrees reduces the price of the article to the minimum of a rea. sonable profit on the capital employed.
" It is the interest of the community, with a view to eventual and permanent economy, to encourage the growth of mamifactures. In a national view, a temporary enhancement of price must always be well compensated by a permanent reduction of it.
“This eventual diminution of the prices of manufactured articles, which is the result of internal manufacturing establishments, has a direct and very important tendency to benefit agriculture. It enables the farmer to
with a small quantity of his labour, the manufactured produce of which he stands in need, and consequently increases the value of his income and property.
“The uniform appearance of an abundance of specie, as the concomitant of a flourishing state of manufactures, and of the reverse, where they do not prevail, afford a strong presumption of their favourable operation upon the wealth of a country.”
Alexander Hamilton. “ To be independent for the comforts of life, we must fabricate them ourselves. We must now place the manufacturer by the side of the agriculturist. The grand enquiry now is, shall we make our own comforts, or go without them at the will of a foreign nation? Experience has taught me that manufactures are now as necessary to our independence as to our comfort." Thomas Jefferson.
PRINTED BY J. R. A. SKERRETT, FOR THE PHILADELPHIA SOCIETY FOR
THE PROMOTION OF AMERICAN MANUFACTURES.
From the Report of Alexander Hamilton, Esquire, Secretary of the
Treasury, January, 1790. THE expediency of encouraging manufactures in the United States, which was, not long since, deemed very questionable, appears at this time to be pretty generally admitted. The embarrassments, which have obstructed the progress of our external trade, have led to serious reflections on the necessity of enlarging the sphere of our domestic commerce: the restrictive regulations, which in foreign markets abridge the vent of the increasing surplus of our agricultural produce, serve to beget an earnest desire, that a more extensive demand for that surplus may be created at home. And the complete success which has rewarded manufacturing enterprise, in some valuable branches, conspiring with the promising symptoms which attend some less mature essays in others, justify a hope, that the obstacles to the growth of this species of industry, are less formidable than they were apprehended to be; and that it is not difficult to find in its further extension, a full indemnification for any external disadvantages, which are, or may be experienced, as well as an accession of resources favourable to national independence and safety.
There still are, nevertheless, respectable patrons of opinions, unfriendly to the encouragement of manufactures. The following are, substantially, the arguments by which these opinions are defended:
" In every country (say those who entertain them) agriculture is the most beneficial and productive object of human industry. This position, generally, if not universally true, applies with peculiar emphasis to the United States, on account of their immense tracts of fertile territory, uninhabited and unimproved. Nothing can afford so advantageous an employment for capital and labour, as the conversion of this extensive wilderness into cultivated farms. Nothing equally with this, can contribute to the population, strength, and real riches of the country.
“To endeavour, by the extraordinary patronage of government, to accelerate the growth of manufactures, is, in fact, to endeavour, by force and art, to transfer the natural current of industry, from a more to a less beneficial channel. Whatever has such a tendency must necessarily be unwise: indeed it can hardly ever be wise in a government, to attempt to give a direction to the industry of its citizens. This, under the quick-sighted guidance of private interest, will, if left to itself, infallibly find its own way to the most profitable employment; and it is by such employment, that the public prosperity will be most effectually promoted." To leave industry to itself, therefore, is, in almost every case, the soundest, as well as the simplest policy.
" This policy is not only recommended to the United States, by considerations which affect all nations; it is, in a manner, dictated to them by the imperious force of a very peculiar situation. The smallness of their population, compared with their territory--the constant allurements to emigration from the settled to the unsettled parts
of the country—the facility with which the less independent condition of an artisan can be exchanged for the more independent condition of a
farmer-these, and similar causes, conspire to produce, and, for a length of time, must continue to occasion, a scarcity of hands for manufacturing occupation, and dearness of labour, generally. To these disadvantages for the prosecution of manufactures, a deficiency of pecuniary capital being added, the prospect of a successful competition with the manufacturers of Europe, must be regarded as little less than desperate. Extensive manufactures can only be the offspring of a redundant, at least of a full population. Till the latter shall characterize the situation of this country, 'tis vain to hope for the former.
"If, contrary to the natural course of things, an anseasonable and premature spring can be given to certain fabrics, by heavy duties, prohibitions, bounties, or by other forced expedients; this will only be to sacrifice the interests of the community to those of particular classes. Besides the misdirection of labour, a virtual monopoly will be given to the persons employed on such fabrics; and an enhancement of price, the inevitable consequence of every monopoly, must be defrayed at the expense of the other parts of the society. It is far preferable, that those persons should be engaged in the cultivation of the earth, and that we should procure, in exchange for its productions, the commodities, with which foreigners are able to supply us in greater perfection, and upon better terms.”
This mode of reasoning is founded upon facts and principles, which have certainly respectable pretensions. If it had governed the conduct of nations, more generally than it has done, there is room to suppose, that it might have carried them faster to prosperity and greatness, than they have attained by the pursuit of maxims too widely opposite. Most general theories, however, admit of numerous exceptions; and there are few, if any, of the political kind, which do not blend a considerable portion of error with the truths they inculcate.
In order to an accurate judgment, how far that, which has been just stated, ought to be deemed liable to a similar imputation, it is necessary to advert carefully to the considerations which plead in favour of manufactures, and which appear to recommend the special and positive encouragement of them, in certain cases, and under certain reasonable limitations.
It ought readily to be conceded, that the cultivation of the earth, as the primary and most certain source of national supply as the immediate and chief source of subsistence to man-as the principal source of those materials which constitute the nutriment of other kinds of labour-as including a state most favourable to the freedom and independence of the human mind-one, perhaps, most conducive to the multiplication of the human species—has intrin. sically a strong claim to pre-eminence over every other kind of industry:
But, that it has a title, to any thing like an exclusive predilection, in any country, ought to be admitted with great caution. That it is even more productive than every branch of industry, requires more evidence than has yet been given in support of the position. That its real interests, precious and important as, without the help of exaggeration, they truly are, will be advanced, rather than injured by
the due encouragement of manufactures, may, it is believed, be satis factorily demonstrated. And it is also believed, that the expediency of such encouragement, in a general view, may be shown to be recommended by the most cogent and persuasive motives of national policy.
It has been maintained, that agriculture is not only the most productive, but the only productive species of industry. The reality of this suggestion, in either respect, has, however, not been verified by any accurate detail of facts and calculations: and the general arguments, which are adduced to prove it, are rather subtile and paradoxical, than solid or convincing.
Those, which maintain its exclusive productiveness, are to this effect:
Labour, bestowed upon the cultivation of land, produces enough, not only to replace all the necessary expenses incurred in the business, and to maintain the persons who are employed in it, but to afford, together with the ordinary profit on the stock or capital of the farmer, a net surplus, or rent for the landlord or proprietor of the soil. But the labour of artificers does nothing more than replace the stock which employs them, or which furnishes materials, tools, and wages, and yield the ordinary profit upon that stock. It yields nothing equivalent to the rent of land. Neither does it add any thing to the total value of the whole annual produce of the land and labour of the country. The additional value given to those parts of the produce of land, which are wrought into manufactures, is counterbalanced by the value of those other parts of that produce, which are consumed by the manufacturers. It can therefore only be by saving or parsimony, not by the positive productiveness of their labour, that the classes of artificers can in any degree augment the revenue of the society.
To this it has been answered,
1. “ That inasmuch as it is acknowledged, that manufacturing labour reproduces a value equal to that which is expended or consumed in carrying it on, and continues in existence the original stock or capital employed, it ought, on that account alone, to escape being considered as wholly unproductive: that though it should be admitted, as alleged, that the consumption of the produce of the soil, by the classes of artificers or manufacturers, is exactly equal to the value added by their labour to the materials upon which it is exerted; yet it would not thence follow, that it added nothing to the revenue of the society, or to the aggregate value of the annual produce of its land and labour. If the consumption, for any given period, amounted to a given sum, and the increased value of the produce manufactured, in the same period, to a like sum, the total amount of the consumption and production during that period, would be equal to the two sums, and consequently double the value of the agricultural produce consumed. And though the increment of value, produced by the classes of artificers, should at no time exceed the value of the produce of the land consumed by them, yet there would be at every moment, in consequence of their labour, a greater value of goods in the market, than would exist independent of it.
2. " That the position, that artificers can augment the revenue of a society, only by parsimony, is true in no other sense, than in one