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but, under the present bill, other respon- no two things could be more distinct. sibility, he maintained, they had none. That war might be averted he had no After passing a bill, which suspended the doubt. To negociate, it was said, would ordinary laws of the land, on an alleged be to acknowledge the power with whom alarm of danger, could their lordships pu- we negociated. If we admitted an explanish a minister, because his suspicions nation, which it would hardly be conwere more alive, and his alarm greater tended we ought not to admit, we as than their own. Yet this, in almost any much acknowledged the power of those possible abuse, would be his only crime. who offered it, as by sending an ambassaİf, on due inquiry, they found some such dor to negociate with them. When they bill necessary, let them next endeavour considered the advantages we had derived, so to frame it, as to point only at the and might still derive, from a wise neutrapersons who were the real objects of it. I lity, he was confident that every man in He concluded with moving, “That the this country would condemn our entering bill be read a third time on this day fort into a war, without first taking every pracnight."

ticable and honourable means to avoid it. Lord Hawkesbury said, that to disclose The French had committed no invasion the information required, might defeat on our allies; and he sincerely believed the object of the bill. It was a measure they had not a plan which they might called for by public necessity, and justi- not be suffered to pursue, even with adfied by the right of self-defence, which vantage to us, if we persevered in our every nation was allowed to possess. neutrality. Their lordships, in passing the bill, were The Earl of Carlisle said, that though only enabling the country to continue not accustomed to agree with the present hospitality to persons whom other coun- administration, yet he would support tries had thought it necessary, for their their measures in this instance. He had own safety, to exclude or remove. He often thought a change of adıninistration contended, that without such precautions was the only thing that could be of esas the bill contained, there would be dan- sential service to the country; and his ger from the principles which those per- opinion was not altered ; but at this juncsons might propagate, and referred for ture he was afraid that a change of admithe proof to the decrees of fraternity with nistration might bring about a change of the people of other countries, passed by measures, and that, he thought, would be the French convention.

of very dangerous consequence. If there The Earl of Lauderdale said, that he was to be a change of ministers, it might was willing, by any reasonable measure, naturally be supposed that the first act to quiet the alarms in the minds of the of a new ministry would be to negociate people, alarms which, in his conscience, with France, and that of all things was he believed industriously excited and what he never wished to hear of, because kept up by ministers; but when he saw it would only tend to strengthen our enesuch a bill as this, a bill that altered the mies, and could be of no use to ourselves. established laws, that even interfered with For these reasons he was disposed to give treaties, and all this to provide against all the aid he could to the executive the suspected intentions of about nine- power. teen persons, he could not help thinking The Marquis of Lansdoren said, he was that it was part of a chain of measures, against this bill because he was persuaded purposely calculated to excite alarm there were no grounds whatever for it; among the people, and by rousing their and he was sure, had they any ground passions, to extinguish their reason. that they dare state, ministers would not When he saw ministers pressing a mea- venture upon a measure in direct violasure, as essential to the safety of the tion of law, without producing that country, which admitted of no defence ground. He could not believe that, even on justice, but only on expediency, hie it there were eighteen or twenty persons could not help fearing that they meant to in the country of the description that had occupy the attention of parliament on been alluded to, their influence was such another object, while they were going to

as to induce ministers to infringe upon force the country into a war.

No man

the laws of the country, by bringing in this could talk of negociating to avert so great bill merely on their account. He had a calamity, without being accused of pro- no doubt but, if the bill passed, there posing an alliance with France, although might be twenty, thirty, or forty foolish

and idle Frenchmen taken up; but that the rights of man. A court might use would not convince him of the necessity the one term with as much propriety, as of such extraordinary measures as had a people might use the other.“ Neither lately been pursued. "He wished to know of them had a precise meaning, and they on what grounds we were going to war? might, with the same justice, be applied He had heard that it was the desire of to answer any purpose whatever. If the the people of France to proceed any empress of Russia was asked on what delengths to serve this country; and though pended the security of Europe ? she they might perhaps refuse to abandon would reply, on the slavery of Poland; their project of opening the Scheldt, it and every other power would answer that was not to be doubted that they would be question with a reference to its own p2happy to give us every satisfactory expla- culiar advantage. With regard to his nation of the principles of their conduct. conduct on this business, it might be imHeconsidered this bill in no other light than puted to principles inimical to the constia partial suspension of the Habeas Corpus tution of this country; but the fact was, act; and if ministers had any information that he admired the constitution of this of intrigues being formed in this country, country as much as any man. He ad. between foreigners and persons of the mired it, however, not with a supersticountry, they were extremely to blame tious papistical admiration, but with the for not suspending the Habeas Corpus rational feelings of a protestant, who conact entirely. With regard to the suspen- sidered it as a well constructed machine sion of that act, he would desire noble calculated for the general good. The lords to look back to the rebellion in proclamations and associations in its de1745, when, upon the 3rd of September fence he thought would operate to its the king had sent to acquaint the lord prejudice. As for associations, he thought mayor of London that the Pretender's son it better that associations against governhad landed with a body of troops in Scot- ment should exist, than associations in land, and that the country was in a state its favour; because associations against of rebellion. Notwithstanding this, he government were under the control of gobegged they might observe how ministers vernment, and liable, if they committed acted at that time. Did they summon illegal acts, to the punishment of the law; parliament upon a thirteen days notice, but associations in favour of government, and alarm the country? Certainly not. | were aided by it, and involving mobs in They stuck by old established constitu- rash deeds, under the sanction of parliational rules, and the parliament did not mentary approbation, no bounds were set meet till the 17th of October, and the next to their possible ill consequences. For his day the Habeas Corpus act was suspen- own part, however freely he might speak ded for only six months; but the present on the subject, it was absurd to suppose administration despised such conduct, and, that he could wish for republicanism, after having got parliament in some shape and that with considerable property at huddled together, they come forward to stake in this country, he could hazard propose a suspension of the Habeas Cor- its division. He had always aided the expus act for more than a year and a half. ecutive and legislative branches of the After all, the only clue to unravel the con established form of government; and he duct of ministers was war ; for war they spoke with freedom against the measures certainly meant, and were determined that were adopted, because he believed upon. Every pretext had been suggested, those measure to be wrong, and because he and the balance of power, a mere paper did not choose to be reproached when it balance, a balance of air and nothing should be too late, with not having, at the more, was attempted to be revived. But proper time, opposed the measures which were the people to be persuaded to go to had appeared pernicious. It was a pleasure war on this pretence? Or were they to to him to think, that however unpopular his be persuaded to it, on the principle of conduct might prove, he had performed complying with a treaty for the sake of his duty, and that he had endeavoured to ratifying a treaty which was made a hun prevent the parliament and the people dred and fifty years ago ? Conscious that from being precipitated into an unnecesthe subject would not bear examination, sary war. ministers had talked likewise of the secu. Lord Loughborough said, that the duty rity of Europe, but the security of Eu- of a subject, his regard for the laws of the rope was as indefinite an expression as country, the obligations of religion, and

the allegiance which he owed to the crown increased force; and clubs and societies for the protection he received from it, for spreading their doctrines were formed called for his support to government on all over the kingdom. Embassys were sent the present occasion. It had been ob- to France to congratulate the National jected, that this bill was a new and extra- Assembly on their success, and even to ordinary measure. The principle was not promise the assistance of numbers here new.-By the common law, aliens were who would rise up in their cause, and here by the permission and protection of who, in return, expected their fraternal the king, which might be withdrawn. aid to overturn this constitution. In France, The bill was, indeed, an extraordinary anarchy and confusion triumphed over all measure ; but was not the situation in order and regularity. They had long viliwhich we stood equally so ? There might fied and despised the Christian religion; but be some cases bearing a little affinity to now, incredible as it might appear, public the present to be found in history, but professions of Atheism had been made in none exactly parallel. The period which full convention, and received with much produced circumstances the most similar applause ; publicly was it declared, that was the reign of queen Elizabeth. At there existed no God, and Atheism was the that time th

overgrown power of Philip basis of their institutions. The sanctity 2d. agitated and alarmed every surround of the seventh day they had very early ing nation. Actuated not only by am- abolished; and the relation of parent and bition, but by a religious fanaticism, in- child they had destroyed. Their false tent upon the propagation of its own doc- prophet had taught, that no honour was trines, its greatest efforts were exerted due to the parent, who in his turn might against this island. Money, forces, sedi- abandon the child. Robbery, murder, tious writings, emissaries, were employed and licentiousness, not only went unputo excite plots in England, insurrections nished, but were encouraged as meritoin Ireland, and attacks - from Scotland, rious acts. False testimony was a proof against the queen ; but they were em- of patriotism; and an universal breach of ployed in vain, owing to the wise regula- the tenth commandment was the first tions adopted by that princess and her principle and foundation of their state. councils. At present a great and power-So entirely were all ideas of property ful people, actuated by a new fanaticism subverted, that it had lately been pubof infidelity, were endeavouring to propa licly declared,'that the farmer had only the gate over all Europe, principles as incon- possession of the corn he had reaped, but sistent with all established governments as that the property was in the public, who they were with the happiness of mankind. had a right at discretion to take it from However extravagant their doctrines might him.-It had been said, that the fears of be, they had indisputably made some pro- ministers were all affected; that there was selytes in this country; and though the no foundation for the alarms which they numbers were comparatively insignificant, had circulated. Ministers were tauntingly they were stirring and active in their mis- called upon for their proofs. Parliamenchievous purposes, and confident of foreign tary scepticism might be allowed; but if aid. The proclamation which ministers any man out of the House were to ada issued during the last spring, had for a vance such an opinion he would be laughed time the desired effect. Men, who before at. A proper sense of their danger had had been loud in their commendations of pervaded all ranks of men; and they had the measures of France, became more come forward as one man in defence of moderate and reserved; and in proportion the common cause.

A noble lord had as the success of the combined armies spoken with contempt of the supposed against France became more probable, that number of French emissaries here, as voice became still more faint. After the being only eighteen or nineteen. He horrid massacres of the 10th of August would wish to call to their lordships recoland 2nd of September, all their partisans lection, that in the disgraceful riots of had abandoned them: the language then 1780, the whole number originally conwas, that after such flagitious conduct cerned in that infamous proceeding, was they could not find a friend in any quar- not above three-score. When their lordter of the globe ; but the moment the tide ships were informed, that in the shocking of war turned in favour of the French, massacres in Paris of the 2nd and 3rd of that moment their partisans resumed their September, there were not more than 200 courage: sedition again broke out with persons employed, and that in a city containing more than 600,000 inhabitants, measure be justified from the situation of with 30,000 men under arms, their lord- this country at the present moment? He ships would not think lightly of nineteen had no difficulty in answering in the affirpersons armed with daggers, under the mative; and to add, that he was of opinion, cry of “ No King”. We might now have that the situation of the country was such been in the like situation as we were in as would have justified a stronger measure. 1780, had not ministers timely prevented He hoped that the people would join it by calling out the militia; and by mak- heart and hand in assisting the executive ing the military preparations which we all government. All parties should come saw or heard of. Such measures, it might forward and strengthen the arm of gohave been expected, would have restored vernment as much as they could; they complete tranquillity to this country, but should bury all former differences and disit had done so only in part. It had been putes, and unite in their efforts to preserve objected by a noble earl that the associa- our glorious constitution. tions formed on the part of the friends of The Earl of Guilford's motion was nethe constitution were improper; and that, gatived without a division. After which, too, when other associations were held, the Bill was read a third time and passed. not to prevent sedition, but to increase it ; not to prevent anarchy, but to create it; Debate in the Commons on the Army not to check the dissemination of libels, Estimates.] Dec. 24. The House being but to spread them abroad. Had the no- | in a Committee of the whole House on ble earl consulted the constitution, he the Army Estimates, would have found that all are bound to Mr. For said, that upon the principle assist in putting the law in force, and on which he gave his vote for the naval in aiding and assisting the magistracy to service for the ensuing year, he should be do so. These associations go no farther. ready to give his vote that night. The They are not only legal but highly meri- cases were not equally clear, however, in torious, as tending to strengthen the both instances. An augmentation of the hands of government, and, by keeping army might be necessary on account of men upon their guard; to prevent the in- the internal state of the country; but if sidious designs of their enemies ; they are it was only upon the idea of internal comfor the preservation, and not for the de- motions that this augmentation to the struction, of civil and religious liberty. army was wanted, he ought in strictness But as these meetings were legal, he to give it his negative, because he did not would state those which were not legal. believe that any tumults or commotions It was a high breach of the law for any were likely to happen. He begged to be body of men to assemble, and insolently understood as giving his vote upon the to publish resolutions declaratory of their general posture of our affairs with refedisapprobation of the conduct of judges rence to foreign powers, and which, in his and juries. It was a daring violation of opinion, was such as required strength on the law to assemble and publish opinions the part of the executive government. which militated against the express letter There were other points to which he and spirit of an existing act of parliament. I wished to call the attention of the comThere were two classes of Frenchmen mittee, because he thought them highly now in this country; one who came hither important to the military service, and inby necessity to take refuge; they should teresting to the community at large. He of course be treated with tenderness and knew very well that it was the prerogative humanity ; another class who came hither of the crown to judge of the propriety of for the purpose of doing all they could to making any appointments in the army : create confusion ; they were the proper but that, like every other prerogative of objects of this bill. After observing that the crown, was given to the crown for the we should, in this case, give ministers all benefit of the people; and therefore the the power they asked, and the confidence exercise of it should be examined by that which the Romans, in their freest state, House, when they were voting away the gave to their consuls when they passed money of the people. The subject to the decree “ Caverent Consules ne quid which he wished to call the attention of detrimenti capiat Republica," his lord- the committee was this. He had no poship came to the necessity of the present sitive knowledge upon the subject; but he measure, on which, he observed, the fol- | had heard from general report, that selowing question would arise : « Can this veral officers of high rank, and, he believed, of acknowledged military merit, as that were not to be carelessly overlooked, well as exemplary conduct and unble because the whole safety of the service mished character, had been dismissed the might depend upon them; for while it service. One of them was a man with was thought necessary that we should whom he was related in blood, but with have a military establishment annually, whom, on account of his virtues, he was by passing our mutiny bill, it was necesstill more intimately connected in friend- sary that the officers we had should be ship. He meant lord Edward Fitzgerald. men connected with the great landed inAnother noble lord's case was to be no- terest of this country. That was one ticed. Of this nobleman he knew nothing great security we had for their attachment but by report, which certainly was in his to the constitution, and the fidelity of favour; the lord Sempill

. These two their conduct. But should it ever be geofficers had been discharged from the ser- nerally understood, and adopted into vice. He did not know the grounds upon practice, that in every difference of opiwhich they had been dismissed; but he nion between the king's ministers and the had heard it was for entering into a sub- king's officers, the latter were to be subscription for the purpose of supporting ject to the caprice of the former, and that the French against the combined armies. an officer, the moment he entered the serNow, whether that subscription was a vice, became a mere soldier, without any right or a wrong measure in itself, was a civil rights, that was to say, a mere miliquestion which it did not belong to that tary machine, with none but military House to canvass, unless there was some views—a soldier who had forgot that he motion specifically to that effect before was a citizen-there was an end at once them ; but of this he was sure, it was a of all the honour and all the glory which measure that was at all events legal, and had hitherto belonged to the military might be infinitely meritorious. Nor was service.

service. But there was a third case stiil it without a precedent. When Corsica more remarkable; he meant the case of was about to become subject to the domi- captain Gawler. He said, it was against nion of France, there was a general sub- all the principles of military discipline to scription in this country to assist the Cor- dismiss an officer for refusing to erase his sicans. There was last summer a general name from the Society for Constitutional subscription to assist Poland, against the Information. It was laying a foundation infamous opppression of Russia. He did for political disputes between officers in not think that any blame was to be at. the army, and afterwards determining them tached to that act; the first municipal of- by a reference to the caprice of ministers. ficer in the kingdom commenced it, and This was a practice very much to be much to the honour of the people of this avoided indeed, or it might be the death country it became very general. With of the service. Why were not these respect to France, individuals had the points brought forward before a courtsame right to subscribe as we had with martial? He stated these things, because regard to Poland; for France at that time he thought them subjects of grievance to was in a state of perfect neutrality with the service, and that they would be finally regard to us; so all Europe was informed, detrimental to the interests of the people. by his majesty's commands to lord Gower The Secretary at War thanked Mr. Fox when he was recalled from Paris, and for the candid manner in which he had therefore it was not criminal in any indi. admitted the prerogative of the crown. vidual to assist the French. If it was The right the crown had of dismissing not criminal in any individual to assist the any of its officers, without assigning a French, it could not be so in any of his reason for it, was a right that was not majesty's officers. If they did their duty doubted. As to the court martial to as soldiers, they were not to relinquish which the right hon. gentleman had alany of their civil rights. Whatever, luded, he allowed that the noble lords, therefore, ministers might think, they and the other honourable officer, were should not have dismissed these noblemen certainly liable to a court martial; but it from the service. There was nothing that did not from thence by any means follow could be done with innocence and propriety that they should not be dismissed without by any one of his majesty's subjects, that a court martial, if his majesty should be might not be done with equal innocence pleased to order it so. and propriety by any one of the officers in Mr. For admitted the prerogative of his majesty's service. These were points 1 the king, but he must again maintain that


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