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SIX GREAT QUESTIONS WHICH SUGGEST THEMSELVES REGARDING THE METHODS OF GOVERNING AND DEVELOPING COLONIES AND THEIR PEOPLE.
The chief questions which naturally present themselves in considering the best methods of governing a noncontiguous people may perhaps be stated as follows:
(1) What share of the government of the successfully managed colony originates at the seat of the home Government and what share in the colony, and by whom and in what manner are the laws and regulations created?
(2) What share of the administration within the colony is conducted by representatives of the home Government, and what share is intrusted to the natives in conjunction with the representatives of the home Government?
(3) What steps are taken and methods applied to improve the material, mental, and moral condition of the people of the colony?
(4) How are habits of industry and thrift inculcated among the natives and the necessary labor supply obtained for the development of industries which shall render the colony self-supporting and its people prosperous?
(5) How are the necessary funds for the conduct of the colonial government raised, and is any part of such funds supplied by the home Government?
(6) The commercial relation between the colony and the mother country; its ability to supply the articles required in the home country and to absorb those produced for export by the mother country, and the extent to which the tariff and other regulations between the colony and the mother country are adjusted to encourage this mutual interchange.
The most practical answer to these practical questions must be obtained by a study of the methods at present applied in the world's colonies by the experienced nations, and by combining with these facts the expressed views of men who have spent many years in this work or in studies of the world's work along these lines. By this plan it is hoped that this study may prove a convenience to those desiring to reach conclusions for themselves. In attempting to discuss each subject separately it has been found necessary to repeat parts of certain statements as bearing upon more than one phase of the general subject, but this has been done only where necessary to a clear presentation of the subject under discussion.
In discussing the six great questions which suggest themselves with reference to the management of colonies, and which have been already outlined, it seems again proper to cite the experiences and conclusions of the great nations which have been for centuries studying these questions, and of the students who have collated facts of history and drawn conclusions therefrom.
(For summarization of conclusions on the above subjects, see pp. 1407-1408.)
WHAT SHARE OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE SUCCESSFULLY MANAGED COLONY ORIGINATES AT THE SEAT OF THE HOME GOVERNMENT AND WHAT SHARE IN THE COLONY, AND BY WHOM AND IN WHAT MANNER ARE THE LAWS AND REGULATIONS CREATED?
In attempting to answer this question by showing what methods the colonizing nations of the world are now applying as a result of their long experience, it may first be said that little is attempted in the way of detailed legislation by the legislative body of the governing country. The British Parliament, the French Assembly, and the Netherlands Parliament or States-General, the lawmaking bodies of the three countries having extended colonial experience, do not attempt to legislate frequently and continuously regarding details of affairs in the colonies. The impossibility of members of the legislative body having sufficient knowledge of local conditions in the colonies to intelligently and properly prepare and enact laws suited to those conditions, coupled with the physical impossibility of giving to the special needs of each colony sufficient time for the proper understanding and framing of local laws and regulations, has caused these legislative bodies to leave to responsible officers of the Government, who are charged with that duty, all details of colonial affairs, retaining to themselves only the shaping of the general policy with reference to the form of government and the relations, fiscal and otherwise, of the colony with the home Government.
SPECIAL CABINET OFFICERS FOR COLONIES.
In the United Kingdom, France, and Netherlands, the general management of colonial affairs is intrusted to a cabinet officer, whose entire attention, together with that of his department, is given to the colonies; while in Germany and Belgium, which have more recently entered the colonial field, the supervision and direction of the affairs of the colonies are intrusted to and made a part of the duty of a specified cabinet officer or minister. These officials, termed secretaries, are assisted by a staff of assistant secretaries, legal secretaries, and clerks, and they are given large discretionary powers in consulting with, supervising and directing the officials located in the colonies.
The necessary legislation for the detailed government of colonies usually originates in the colony, first in the form of recommendations by trusted officials, which, after submission to experienced persons in the colonies whose judgment is relied upon, are forwarded to the colonial office for consideration, discussion, and approval; and in cases where action by the legislative body in the colony is necessary such action usually follows the submission to the home office or colonial department. In most cases, all these things are done without referring the matter to Parliament, which expects the colonial department to handle these details, holding it responsible for that work, just as the secretaries of other departments are held responsible for the details of theirs.
THE NETHERLANDS SYSTEM.
The Netherlands colonies, prior to 1848, were governed under the immediate direction of the King; but the constitution of that year divided the responsibility between the King and Chambers, and required annual reports to the States-General, or legislative body, on the state of the colonies. Since that time the general management of the colonies has been in charge of a member of the council of ministers. This official is designated as the minister of the colonies, the present occupant of that position, Hon. J. T. Cremer, having had long personal experience as a high official in the colonies and being assisted by a staff, many of whom have also had experience in the colonies.
THE FRENCH SYSTEM.
The French colonies were, prior to 1894, in charge of the department of marine, and later under the minister of commerce and industry; but in 1894 a minister of colonies was created, and since that time the colonial service of the home Government has been in charge of this official, the present minister of colonies, M. Albert Decrais, being assisted by a cabinet, of which his secretary is the chief, and which is composed of the chiefs of bureau of the colonial department. The work of the department is divided among a large staff of subordinate officers and employees, the secretary-general being chief of the cabinet and in charge of correspondence with the colonies and foreign countries and other departments. The African colonies are in charge of a special branch of the department, Madagascar in a separate bureau, while the colonies in America, Asia, and the Orient are in charge of one general division, each subdivision being assigned to a separate bureau. In addition to this, there is an inspector-general of health in the colonies, the inspector-general of public works, the committee of public works, a commission on expenditures and receipts, a committee on the verification of accounts in Indo-China, a commission in charge of colonial banks, a commission in charge of demands for territorial concessions, and another for the verification of accounts. A recently organized branch of the colonial service, designated the "office colonial," is especially charged with the gathering of information regarding the agricultural, commercial, and industrial development of the colonies, and its distribution both to the people of France and to the colonies. Information regarding transportation, freights, insurance, duties, statistics of production, imports, exports, demand for the various articles in the colonies, production in the colonies of various articles for export, introduction of immigration, concessions, and all matters likely to be of value to the people of France or to the people of the colonies are gathered and distributed by this bureau, and to it are forwarded all inquiries relating to matters of this character which reach the French Government. A large
proportion of the decrees and regulations which become laws in the colonies are submitted to, examined, and approved or rejected by the department of colonies, though the fact that the colonies themselves are represented by members in the French legislative body results in more discussion of colonial affairs in that body, in proportion to the interests involved, than in those of the other countries in question.
THE ENGLISH SYSTEM.
All of England's colonies, aside from the great self-governing colonies and India, are in charge of the colonial department, the affairs of India being of such extent and importance and dealing with a population so large and varied in conditions that they are intrusted to a Secretary of State for India, whose department is entirely separate from that of colonies. The first separate organization in England for a central administration of colonial affairs was a committee created in 1660. From 1768 colonial affairs have been dealt with by a member of the cabinet. For a time the colonies were in charge of the secretary of state for war, but since 1854 they have been in charge of a cabinet officer or secretary of state, whose duties were exclusively those relating to colonies, the exact title being "Secretary of State for the Colonies." The present occupant of that position, the Right Hon. Joseph Chamberlain, M. P., is assisted by two under secretaries, four assistant under secretaries, a legal assistant, a private secretary and four assistant private secretaries, and a corps of clerks, some of whom have had experience in the colonies and many having had long experience in the colonial office. In cases where practicable these clerks and assistants are interchanged with the officials in the colonies, and thus practical observation and experience brought to the assistance of the home office and the service of the colonies given the advantage of the training obtained in the home office.
DETAILS OF COLONIAL ADMINISTRATION BY THE HOME GOVERNMENTS.
THE BRITISH SYSTEM.
The scope of the business transacted by the colonial office is shown by the following statement of the distribution of business in the colonial office, as published in the British Colonial Office List for 1901:
"In charge of the permanent under secretary are political, constitutional, and military questions, general supervision of papers on all subjects before submission to the secretary of state. Assistant Under Secretary Graham has charge of business of general departmental and office arrangements, banking, currency, postal, and telegraph business, business connected with South Africa and St. Helena. Assistant Under Secretary Lucas has charge of emigration and immigration, prisons, hospitals, and asylums, business connected with the West Indian colonies and Eastern colonies. Assistant Under Secretary Cox has charge of general legal business, the settlement of legal instruments, colonial laws, business connected with North America, Australia, Fiji, and the West Pacific, Mauritius, Seychelles, Gibraltar, Malta, Cyprus, Bermuda, and the Falkland Islands. Assistant Under Secretary Antrobus has charge of business connected with the West African colonies and protectorates. To Legal Assistant Risley is assigned matters pertaining to colonial laws and general legal business. The office is divided into departments, one of which is in charge of all North American and Australian colonies; another the West Indian; another the Eastern; another South African; another the West African colonies and protectorates; and another the general and miscellaneous correspondence, including questions affecting the establishment of the colonial office, the Crown agents, office, postal, copyright, telegraph, and commercial treaties, conveyances, university examinations, replies to circulars, governors' pensions and postage allowances, naval cadetships, and general correspondence respecting colonial defense.”
The more important colonies, including Canada, Cape Colony, Natal, and the Australian colonies, are represented in England by agentsgeneral, who represent before the colonial office, and where necessary before Parliamentary committees, the interests of their colonies, and act as representatives of the colony in the transaction of its business with the home office. For the smaller colonies, Crown agents are appointed, who act as commercial and financial agents in England for such of the colonial governments as do not possess agentsgeneral. They are remunerated by fixed salaries and are appointed by the secretary of state for the colonies, who exercises a general supervision and control over their compliance with the directions of the colonial governments. Prior to 1833 each colony appointed its own agent in London, but in that year all agencies were consolidated into one office, with the exception of six agents who continued for a time to represent some of the West Indian governments. The colonies which have received responsible governments-Canada, Cape Colony, Natal, and those of British Australia-can not avail themselves of the services of the Crown agents, but have, as above indicated, agencies of their own, which are located near the office of the colonial department.
An emigrants' information office is maintained in London in charge of a committee, of which the secretary of state for the colonies is the president. Its duties are chiefly to supply information with reference to the colonies and the opportunities for emigration, and to issu› warnings in cases where it is desired to discourage emigration to certain places. This office issues quarterly circulars on Canada and the Australasian and South African colonies, which are sent free of charge to persons desiring them, a circular on the emigration of women, and handbooks on Canada, Cape Colony, Natal, and the Australian colonies. The work of the office is largely devoted to answering the inquiries of persons desiring to emigrate, the number of letters dispatched for this purpose averaging about 1,000 per week.
The Royal Botanic Gardens, located near London, are maintained for the study of the products of the colonies and the training of individuals for the maintenance of botanic stations in the colonies, especially those located in the Tropics. The latter are small gardens intended to develop the agricultural resources of the various colonies, especially those in tropical countries, and each is in charge of a curator trained at the Kew Gardens, London. The executive council of the Imperial Institute has recently issued a memorandum directing attention to the character of the work now carried on, especially by the scientific and technical department of the Botanic Gardens, established to obtain information by special inquiries and experimental research regarding the natural or manufacture 1 products of the colonies and local products of manufactures which it is desired to export. This includes the investigation of the chemical constituents and properties of new dyestuffs, tanning materials, seeds, food stuffs, oils, gums, and resins, fibrous timber, medicinal plant 3 and products, animal products, minerals and ores, soils, cements, and various other products, with a view to their commercial utilization. The commercial intelligence office of the board of trade also obtains and distributes information respecting commerce with the colonies. The importance of the maintenance of a colonial department was discussed by Sir George Cornwall Lewis, whose essay "On the Government of Dependencies," issued in 1841, is still looked upon in England as a standard on matters of this character. In it he said: "Before we conclude this outline of the political relations of the English dependencies it is necessary to remark that their government is materially influenced by the existence of separate departments in the dominant country charged with the exclusive care of their political affairs. The early English colonies were in practice nearly independent of the mother country, except as to their external
commercial relations, and there was scarcely any interference on the part of England with the ordinary management of their internal affairs. Accordingly, there was at that time no separate department of the English Government charged exclusively with the superintendence of the government of the dependencies, and the business connected with them, being chiefly commercial, was assigned first to a board, and after, for a short interval, to a permanent committee of the privy council, which had the management of the affairs of trade and the plantations. If it be assumed that colonial and other dependencies are to remain in a state of dependence,
it can not be doubted that they on the whole derive advantage from the existence of a public department in the dominant country specially charged with the superintendence of their political concerns. The existence of such a public department tends to diminish the main obstacles to the good government of a colony, viz, the ignorance and indifference of the dominant country respecting its affairs, end to supply the qualities requisite for its good government, viz, knowledge of its affairs and care for them. If the existence of such a department tends to involve the affairs of the dependency in the party contests of the dominant country, it is to be remembered that this very evil has its good side, inasmuch as the public attention is thereby directed to the dependency and the interest of some portion of the dominant people is awakened to the promotion of its welfare."
APPOINTMENTS OF COLONIAL OFFICERS.
Another manner in which the government of colonies originates at the seat of the home Government is through the appointment by the home Government of governors, and in many cases a part or all of the lawmaking bodies. This is true to a greater or less extent of every colony in the world, though, of course, less strongly marked in those British colonies which have what is designated as "representative institutions and responsible governments." By this term is meant the colonies of Canada, Australasia, and South Africa. The Australasian colonies, under the new confederation, elect both branches of their lawmaking bodies, senators and representatives; but the governor-general is appointed by the home Government and has a veto power over all legislation, and also has authority to appoint ministers of state or heads of departments. In Cape of Good Hope the members of both branches of the legislative body are elected, but a governor is appointed by the home Government. In Natal all members of the legislative assembly are elected, but those of the legislative council are appointed or "summoned" by the governor, who is appointed by the home Government. In Canada the lower branch of the legislative body is elected and members of the upper branch are appointed for life by the governor, who is appointed by the home Government. Thus even in the three great groups which have what is designated as "representative institutions and responsible government," viz, Australasia, South Africa, and Canada, the power of the home Government to influence legislation through a governor appointed by that Government and through, in some degree, his appointees, is at least a factor worthy of consideration in determining the question as to what share of the government of the colony originates at the seat of the home Government.
CROWN COLONY GOVERNMENT.
In the other colonies of Great Britain the power to originate or control legislation and details of administration in the colonies remains in the hands of the home Government to a much greater extent through the relatively greater appointing power retained.
In India legislation and administration are conducted by the governor-general and his council and the legislative council. The governor is appointed by the home Government, as are also the members of his council. For legislative purposes the governor-general's council is expanded into a legislative council by the addition of sixteen members who are named by the governor-general, or viceroy, as he is termed. This council has power, subject to certain restrictions, to make laws for all persons within British India and for all native Indian subjects in any part of the world. Thus the entire lawmaking body of India is, in fact, named by the home (British) Government. The remaining British colonies, other than those already named, are divided into three classes: (1) Those which have a legislative council, partly appointed and partly elected; (2) those which have a legislative council wholly appointed; (3) those which have no legislative council, but in which "legislative power" is delegated to the officer administering the government. In the first-named class, in which the legislative council is partly appointed and partly elected, there are nine colonies-Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, British Guiana, Cyprus, Jamaica, Leeward Islands, Malta, and Mauritius, with a total population of about 2,000,000. In the second class mentioned, in which the legislative council is wholly appointed by the Crown, there are the colonies of British Honduras, British New Guinea, Ceylon, Falkland Islands, Fiji, Gambia, Gold Coast, Grenada, Hongkong, Lagos, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Straits Settlements, Trinidad and Tobago, and Turks Island, with a population of about 7,000,000. The third-mentioned class, those which have no legislative council and in which legislative power is delegated by the home Government to the officer administering the government, includes Basutoland, Gibraltar, Labuan, St. Helena, Northern and Southern Nigeria.
The total population of Australasia, Canada, Cape Colony, and Natal is but about 15,000,000, while the total population of the British colonies, including India, is about 350,000,000. Thus it will be seen that of the 350,000,000 inhabitants of the British colonies, 335,000,000 are governed by law-making and administering bodies wholly appointed by the home Government and the laws administered in all cases by governors and lieutenant-governors named by the home Government. By way of illustration of the power of the home Government in the colonies having legislative bodies, it may be remarked that in several instances legislative bodies in the British colonies have actually legislated themselves out of existence and requested the home Government to create a new governing body in their stead. An example of this is cited in the Colonial Office List of 1901, which says of Jamaica: "The original constitution, which, after existing for nearly two hundred years, was surrendered in 1866, was a representative one, consisting of a governor, a legislative council, and an assembly of forty-seven elected members. After the suppression of the rebellion in 1865, Governor Eyre, at the meeting of the legislature, urged the unsuitability of the then existing form of government to meet the circumstances of the community and the necessity of making some sweeping change by which a strong government might be created. The legislature willingly responded, abrogated all the existing machinery of legislation, and left it to Her Majesty's Government to substitute another form of government which might be better suited to the altered circumstances of the colony. A legislative council was then by orders in council established, consisting of such numbers of official and unofficial members as Her Majesty might see fit. The numbers of each were six until 1878, when they were enlarged to eight, and a ninth was added in 1881. By Order in Council in 1895 the constitution was fixed in the following manner: A council to consist of the governor and five ex officio members and such other persons, not exceeding ten in number, as Her Majesty may from time to time appoint or the Government may provisionally appoint, and fourteen to be elected." In this case it will be seen that an elective body deliberately legislated itself out of existence at the suggestion of a representative of the home Government, the governor, and was superseded by a body in which a majority of the members were appointed by the home Government.
VIEWS OF EARL GREY.
Earl Grey, who was secretary of state for the British colonial department during Lord John Russell's administration, in the introduction to his series of letters to Lord Russell in defense of the colonial system adopted during that administration and since retained, discusses the colonial office and its functions as follows: "I would observe, with reference to the vague declamation on the absurdity of the attempt to govern the colonies from Downing street, of which we have heard so much, that it would undoubtedly be in the highest degree absurd to attempt to govern from Downing street if this is to be understood in the sense of directing from thence all the measures of the local authorities; but I am not aware that such an attempt has at any period of our history been thought of. It is obvious that if the colonies are not to become independent States, some kind of authority must be exercised by the Government at home. It will conduce to a clearer understanding of the subject to consider by what means any control over its dependencies is now practically maintained by the mother country and to what extent that control ought to be carried on. The authority of the home Government over the colonies is exercised mainly in two ways: First, by the appointment of governors, and, second, by sanctioning or disallowing the measures of the local governments of which these officers are at the head. It is also exercised sometimes, but much more rarely, by prescribing measures for their adoption. With regard to the selection of governors, though I am aware that the contrary opinion has sometimes been expressed, it appears to me clear that if we are to have colonies at all the appointment of their governors must necessarily be retained by the Crown, since I do not perceive by what means any real authority or control could be exercised over the executive government of the colonies by the advisers of the Crown. But though the governors of the colonies ought, in my opinion, always to be named by the Crown, the nature and extent of the powers intrusted to them must differ widely in different cases. In the settlements on the west coast of Africa the governors substantially exercise both executive and legislative authority, limited only by an appeal to the home Government. In Canada the legislative assembly has not only the chief power of legislation, but also virtually a large share of executive authority. Between these two extremes there are many intermediate degrees of more or less power being exercised by the governors of different colonies. * * In proportion as governors become more independent of any local control it becomes necessary that some should be exercised over them from home, and in those colonies where they are unchecked by any kind of representative institutions it is the duty of the secretary of state to maintain a vigilant superintendence over their proceedings. Although he ought, as I perceive, to abstain from any meddling interference in the details of their administration and to support their authority as long as they appear to deserve his confidence, and rather to advise their recall when they cease to do so than to fetter their discretion by detailed instructions, he is yet bound to attend to complaints which may be made against their measures and prescribe for their guidance the general line of policy to be pursued. These rules as to the degree of interference to be exercised by the secretary of state are equally applicable to the legislative and executive measures of the local authorities in the colonies. But while I am of opinion that the authority of the Crown, of which the secretary of state is the depositary, should be used in all cases with great caution, I can not concur with those who would prohibit all interference on the part of the home Government in the internal affairs of the colonies. It seems to have been overlooked by those who insist that such interference must always be improper that this would in some cases imply leaving a dominant population, perhaps even a dominant minority, to govern the rest of the community without check or control.
"To permit the government of a distant colony to be carried on notwithstanding the operation of corruption which might be known to exist, would not be consistent with any but very low views of the duties belonging to the responsible advisers of the Sovereign. * But even where the interference of the home Government is not necessary for the protection of a part of the population too ignorant and weak to protect itself, there is another consideration which may require the exercise of some control over the proceedings of the local governments with regard to the internal affairs of the colonies. Every act of these governments is done in the name and by the authority of the Sovereign; hence the honor of the Crown must be compromised by any injustice or violation of good faith which it has the power to prevent being committed by the local authorities. * * Any interference on the part of the minister with measures of purely internal administration in the colonies is to be deprecated, except in very special circumstances; but I am convinced that it may sometimes be called for, and it is therefore expedient to trust averting the evils and dangers which must arise rather to the discretion with which the powers now vested in the Crown are exercised than to a limitation of those powers by new legal restrictions. * * I consider it to be the obvious duty and interest of this country to extend representative institutions to every one of its dependencies where this can be done with safety; but I believe that in some cases representative governments could not be safely created and that some form of representative institutions is by no means applicable to colonies in different stages of social progress. The principal bar to the establishment of representative governments in colonies is their being inhabited by a population of which a large proportion is not of European race and has not made such progress in civilization as to be capable of exercising with advantage the privilege of self-government. * * Hence it appears to me that a surrender of the large portion of the powers now exercised by the servants of the Crown would not be calculated to insure the administration of the government on principles of justice and an enlightened regard for the welfare of all classes in those communities. This end may, I believe, be far better attained by maintaining for the present in those colonies the existing system of government. It would be a great mistake to suppose that because the inhabitants are not entitled to elect any of the members of the legislature it provides no securities against abuses. In the first place, the press is perfectly free and the newspapers comment upon all the measures of the government not only with entire liberty, but with the most unbounded license, and the force both of public opinion and also, to a considerable degree, opinion in this country is thus brought to bear upon all measures of the administration. Every inhabitant of the colonies is also entitled to freely address to the secretary of state any complaints or remarks he may think proper on the measures of the local authorities, subject only to the rule that such letters shall be transmitted through the hands of the governor, who is bound to forward them in order that he may at the same time send such explanations on the subject as appear to him to be called for. This privilege was largely exercised and is the means of supplying much information. * * * The publicity given to the estimates of the accounts in colonial expenditure and the rule that the drafts of all proposed ordinances shall be published before being passed have enabled the colonists to bring under the consideration of the governors and legislative councils, and ultimately of the secretary of state, any objections they have entertained to proposed ordinances or financial arrangements. Every encouragement has been given them to make known their opinions freely both to the local and home governments, and the most careful consideration has been given to their views, especially when these have been stated by the chambers of commerce or municipal bodies, the advice and assistance of which in the administration of colonial affairs are in my judgment of the highest value.”