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together worthy of ruling the roast, and a landlord richly deserving of every blessing that Christian men can possibly enjoy under petticoat government. Having satisfied my curiosity, in so far as Mr and Mrs Pomeroy were concerned, their daughter, Nan, who presided at the bar, cast a couple of glances from beneath her silken eye-lashes, that were altogether irresistible. I therefore stept up to her, and said, "Well, my dear, this bustling day will try the mettle of thy fair fingers, and put every morsel of good-humour in that sweet face to the test; but let not the flurry of business banish a smile therefrom, and keep every little irritable sproutling snugly under the thumb of female discretion; that's the way to get married, and skip through life. Pray, Miss Pomeroy, who may the two gentlemen be whom the good folk of Castle-Rising have chosen to represent them in Parliament?" Why truly, Sir," replied the smiling bar-maid, "I'm not exactly at liberty to say who they are, but Mr Jerry will be here presently. Many Parliament men have called at our house, to bespeak the seats, and though two are positively fixed upon, I really cannot, in courtesy to Mr Jerry, publish their names, before he announces them officially from the chair.” “ And who is this Mr Jerry," said I," that possesseth so much electioneering influence?" "O, Sir, he's the Squire's valet," replied Miss Pomeroy; "a young man of character and discernment. He counselleth the old boy's dotage with great credit to himself, making some vessels unto honour, and others unto dishonour, without control, none daring to say -What doest thou? Mr Jerry's word at the Hall is law." "Now," said I, "Nan Pomeroy," clenching my fist, and shaking it in her face, "declare unto me, this precious moment, who it is that counselleth Mr Jerry, or, by the blushing blood in
that comely cheek o' thine, thee and I will certainly quarrel." She clapt the fairest finger to her nose that ever wore a ring, curtseyed most gracefully, and retired from the bar. "Would to Heaven," said I, elevating my voice as the bewitching girl tript away, "that every Parliament man was returned by the like fair means!"
Nancy Pomeroy hath dwelt in my remembrance ever since, notwithstanding the great pains taken by her maiden aunts, Moather Blanch and Mouther Deborah, to shangan, as the Scotch term it, an elegant person with falderal finery; and many a time, when presiding at our parish dinners, have I arisen from the chair, being called upon for a toast, and audibly given, "The fair bar-maid, that sent two members to the Nether House!" On these occasions, when memory, like unto a hind let loose, scampers over the past in quest of anecdote to enliven conviviality, how often hath the Gray Mare, and the Black Bull, and the automaton electors, caused my risible muscles to bestir themselves, not a living soul knowing the course thereof, save and except my own individual self! But I am scampering away from my subject at a sad rate, and therefore beg leave to beg the indulgent reader's pardon for so doing.
The afternoon being pretty well expended, I made the best of my way to Lynn Regis, and put up at the Jolly Fiddler; a public-house kept by Mrs Porringer, an old servant of my mother's, whose kindness to me will never be forgotten, every comfort that the wit of woman could devise being in apple-pie order, and altogether worthy of a more profitable guest.
On the morrow I started by times, took the coach, and arrived in town, without falling in with a single adventure worthy of being put on record.
THOUGHTS ON VARIOUS SUBJECTS OF POLITICAL ECONOMY.
Insere, Daphni, piros; carpent tua poma nepotes.
"Be ay setting in a tree when ye have naething else to do, it will be growing, Jock, when ye're sleeping." Heart of Mid-Lothian.
AN improvement in the manufacture of bank-notes would lessen the evil of forgery in three ways:
First, It would increase the difficulty. A bank-note executed in the best manner possible, by an artist of first-rate ability, could not be imitated but by an artist of equal ability, and such artists are rare.
Second, It would lessen the temptation. A very superior artist can acquire more profit and honour by an useful and legal exercise of his talents, and is therefore less tempted to misapply them.
Third, It would increase the power of repairing the evil of forgery. The forger might be subjected to a long confinement, while, in other respects, he might be treated with some degree of kindness, supplied with the means of employing his talents usefully, and persuaded to repair, by his punishment, the injury produced by his crime. It is evident, that his power to repair the evil would be proportioned to his natural abilities; and his will to repair it might be produced by the application of proper means. The effects of moral influences on the soul are as certain as the effects of food and medicine on the body.
This would take away the necessity, and, consequently, the right, of punishing forgery with death. The right of Government to punish crimes is inversely proportional to its power of preventing or repairing them; and in proportion as Political Economy increases the power of prevention and remedy, it diminishes the right of punishment. "What profit
is it if we slay our brother and conceal his blood?”
Improvements in the manufacture of metallic, or of paper currency, lessen the danger of forgery, as improvements in the manufacture of ships lessen the danger of shipwreck. And as no improvement in shipbuilding can altogether prevent shipwreck, so no improvement in the other manufacture can altogether prevent forgery. It is as impossible to make a bank-note that cannot be forged, as to make a ship that cannot be sunk. Forgery proceeds either from the pressure of necessity, or from the misapplication of talent; and both these temptations may be diminished by legislation. Whatever promotes or facilitates intellectual intercourse, increases the supply of useful or innocent employment for the faculties of the mind, as commerce increases the supply of employment for the industry of the hands. The former tends to prevent the misapplication of ingenuity and invention, as the latter the misapplication of industry. Shipwreck proceeds from the violence of elements, over which man has no control. We have more power, therefore, over forgery than over shipwreck ; but it does not yet appear that we shall ever be completely successful against either.
II. On Manufactories. Manufactories will cease to be productive of vice and misery, as soon as there is sufficient moral and religious feeling in the consumers to enforce such regulations as the following:
* "Abimelech took sheep, and oxen, and men servants, and women servants, and gave them unto Abraham, and restored him Sarah his wife. And Abimelech said, Behold, my land is before thee, dwell where it pleaseth thee. And unto Sarah he said, Behold, I have given thy brother a thousand pieces of silver; behold, he is to thee a covering of the eyes unto all that are with thee, and with all other. Thus she was reproved."—Genesis, xx. 14, 15, 16.
+ Daniel, ch. xi. 33, 34, 35.
First, That every workman, in a large manufactory, be not only allowed, but compelled to learn another trade, in order that he may be independent of the manufactory, and at liberty to leave it whenever he is dissatisfied, either with the work or the wages. Till this liberty is given, the manufacturing system is just a modification of slavery. The vices of the workmen are just the vices of slaves.
Third, That every master of a manufactory be required to publish a complete and minute account of his management, in order that the employment of children may be, as much as possible, prevented, by substituting mechanical agency. Perhaps a tax should be laid on these children, in order to make their labour as costly as that of adults. If their labour is really necessary, it will continue in spite of the tax; and if it is not necessary, it ought not to continue.
Second, That when a crime is brought home to one workman, a penalty be inflicted on all,-a considerable fine; advanced, indeed, by the master, but finally paid by a tax on the workmen. It is evident that the labourers who are liable to this penalty ought to have power to expel any associate for whose conduct they are not willing to be responsible. As
the labourer is master of another III. On the Mitigation of Slavery
in the West Indies.
trade, the punishment of expulsion will not be excessive; and if the expulsion is unjust, it will not prevent his admission into another manufactory, provided the workmen are willing to receive him.
By such regulations, slavery, discontent, and gross immorality, will be removed; and the character of the labourers will naturally rise to the level attained in Mr Owen's establishment.
wages will encourage mechanical talent, as high prices encourage productive industry. And it is evident, that if high wages lower, mechanical invention must raise the profits of stock; that the operation of the latter cause must be, in all respects, opposite to that of the former; and that the capitalist will gain more by the one than he will lose by the other.
These regulations will lessen the number, and improve the character of manufacturers. By lessening the supply, they will raise the price of manufacturing industry; and high
The rise of wages will raise the price of produce, by increasing the demand for it, and mechanical invention will lessen the cost of production. The excess of the price above the cost will be raised in two ways; and it is this excess that furnishes the master's profit. There may be some counteracting power, but I have not yet discovered it.
Edinburgh Review, No. LXIV. p. 489.-"M.de Fellenberg has sometimes mentioned, in conversation, the particular circumstances which final. ly determined him to the course he has pursued. In the year 1798, or 1799, he happened to be at Paris, as one of the Commission sent by the Provisional Government established in Switzerland, after the French invasion; and in that capacity he had an official conversation with the Director Rewbel, at his country-house near Paris, in the course of which he laid before him, in glowing colours, a picture of the miserable state to which his country was reduced, and which might soon lead to a Vendean war, destructive to both parties. The Director appeared, for some time, to listen with profound attention, and M. de Fellenberg ascribed his silence to conviction of the truths he urged, and something like a feeling of compunction, when, all at once, the worthy republican, throwing open a window, called aloud to one of his servants, Jaques, apportez moi Finette!"" A little spaniel was brought accordingly.
Mechanical agency is a cheap substitute for productive labour, as potatoes are a cheap substitute for bread; and the dearness of labour would increase the demand for mechanical agency, and, consequently, for mechanical invention, as the dearness of bread increases the demand for potatoes. Mechanical invention is just the art of economising labour; and it is evident, that when the demand for any commodity rises much above the supply, a more economical consumption will naturally follow.
After this rebuff, he gave up the idea of serving his country as a politician, made the best of his way home, and determined to set about the slow work of elementary reformation, by a better mode of education, and to persevere in it for the rest of his life. Now, it seems to me, that the abolitionists are placed in the same situa tion, and that they would be as successful as M. de Fellenberg, if they would pursue the same course. them retire altogether from the Parliament, and from the view of the public;-let them purchase the properties which the planters are desirous to sell, and let them undertake, on their own estates, and with their own slaves, the slow work of elementary reformation and gradual emancipation ;-let them pur. sue the course exemplified by Mr Steele in Barbadoes, by Mr Edgeworth in Ireland, M. de Fellenberg in Switzerland, Mr Owen in Lanark, &c. They would probably obtain the co-operation and instructions of some humane and intelligent planters, by arguments like those which Paul addresses to Philemon, "Wherefore, though I might be much bold in Christ to enjoin thee that which is convenient, yet, for love's sake, I rather beseech thee," &c. They would find as much latent virtue among the whites of the West Indies, as Dr Chalmers found among the radicals of Glasgow.
soon feel the necessity and obligation of truth. The character of the negro seems to me to resemble that of the dog. I have heard anecdotes of the gratitude and fidelity of West-India slaves, quite similar to the anecdotes of dogs with which every one is familiar. I have also been informed, that the jealousy of their master's favour is as strong in the negro as in the dog. It is evident that such men may be strongly influenced by their animal affections, however defective in intellect or in moral perception.
The principle by which slavery might be mitigated, and gradually abolished, is illustrated in the fable of Apollo feeding the flocks of Admetus, in the second book of Telemachus; nothing can exceed the beauty, the tenderness, or the truth, of this exquisite passage. It is too long to be quoted. It begins thus: "Il me disoit souvent que je devois prendre courage," &c. If the abolitionists have any influence with the Government, it is their duty to exert it in favour of the slaves; but if (as I suspect to be the case) they have no such influence, or if they find, upon trial, that their influence is ineffectual or delusive, let them purchase some of the land and negroes that the planters are desirous to sell, and imitate, on their own estates, the example of Mr Steele.
I conceive, that deserving slaves, emancipated, and educated in this country, would be the best missionaries for christianizing the African slaves. But "if any man will do the work, he shall know of the doctrine." Let the enterprise be undertaken with sincerity and ardour, and the necessary means will occur spontaneously. Arma dabunt ipsi. The very touch of difficulty will summon up the power by which it may be subdued.
The greatest obstacle to the mitigation of slavery is the law which rejects the evidence of negroes against white men in a court of justice. Perhaps a benevolent planter might procure that the evidence of his slaves, or of a certain number of them, should be received, by undertaking to pay a penalty for every judicial falsehood of which they might be convicted. If the master paid the penalty of falsehood, the grateful slavet would
• Luke, ch. viii. 38, 39, 40. There are many passages in the Scriptures which throw much light on the science of political economy. I do not think that either the religious or the political writers of this age are sufficiently aware of this.
+ Grateful, because honoured. "Notre ame est haute, et tout ce qui a un air de respect pour sa dignité la penétre et l'enchante; aussi notre orgueil ne fut-il jamais ingrat."-Marwaux.
Some of Fenelon's images appear too beautiful to be natural; but I conceive that they are just an instinctive presentiment, in men of genius and virtue, of what human nature whereafter become. We are but in the infancy of our moral being.
IV. On Insolvency.
It seems to me that every insolvent debtor ought to have the benefit of a trial by jury, before he is cast into prison, or deprived of his property. The jury will ascertain whether his insolvency has proceeded from crime, from imprudence, from a rise in the value of currency, or from any other inevitable misfortune. If from crime, let him be punished. If from imprudence, let him be made to enter into certain engagements; and, if he violates these engagements, let him be punished. If from a change in the value of currency, the jury may recommend that the nominal amount of the debt be reduced; and, though this recommendation will not bind the creditor, it will always be weighty, and often effectual. If from inevitable misfortune, the jury may find out some remedy appropriate to the particular evil, or such light may be thrown on the causes and progress of the evil, as may suggest some method of subsequently preventing it. In all cases, a trial by jury may do good; in no case can it do evil.
A naval commander is brought to trial if the ship with which he is entrusted has been wrecked; the interests of the public are thus secured, and the merits or demerits of these commanders investigated and ascertained. The interests of creditors might be secured, and the characters of debtors investigated, in the same way. It appears to me, that, in proportion as the legal securities for payment of debt are diminished, the moral securities will become stronger; that the demand for mercantile prudence, and mercantile integrity, will increase; that imprudence or dishonesty in trade will become as infamous and as rare as cowardice in war; and that those evils will be prevented by good morals, which have been rather increased than diminished by laws.
If this proposal tends to lessen the security of the lender, it must increase the difficulty of borrowing, and raise the rate of interest; and it will
thereby check the spirit of commer-
had become more enterprising in war.
Commercial Interests. If the corn-laws were abolished, and the national debt reduced, the price of British manufactures would fall, and their exportation increase*. How are other countries to pay for these exports? In money or in goods?
If in money, the relative supply of money must increase in this country, -its relative value must fall,-the price of all commodities must rise,exportation will be checked; and we shall lose, by the excess of exports, all the advantages which we shall have reaped by the abolition of the corn-laws, and the reduction of the public debt.
If they pay in commodities, their industry must be exerted in producing these commodities, their wealth must increase, their political institutions must be improved, the principles of disorder must be exhausted by habitual and successful industry, and the principles of intellectual, moral, and political improvement, at liberty to produce their natural effects. Every improvement will be transferred to these countries as soon as it is exemplified in Britain. city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.”
It is evident, therefore, that the commercial interests of this country are bound up in the same system with the political interests of othe countries; and that nothing can obstruct the progress of liberty in Europe, without obstructing the progress of commerce in Britain. The
It is evident, that a reduction of the debt, coupled with an abolition of the corn laws, would not be injurious either to the fundholder or to the landholder; the price of agricultural and manufactured produce would fall, and the cheapness of commodities would repair the evils produced by the reduction of incomes. See Thoughts on Reducing the Debt, in No. 94 of the Farmer's Magazine.