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selves all the powers not granted out by and through that instrument; that all its provisions and grants of power should be construed strictly, according to the plain import of the language employed, and without looking for any hidden or more extended meaning than the latter justifies; that the same Constitution, being the result of a compact by and between the several States, could not have been created by the people en masse, as, in that event, there being only one party, there could have been no Federal Compact, no Federal Government, no American Confederacy; that the allegiance of the citizen is due, primarily, to the States, and, secondarily, to the United States; that, for all palpable violations of the Constitution by the Federal Government, or by any of its branches, not provided for by the Constitution, a remedial power exists, in the States, to cure the evil ; that the principles of Free Trade ought to be maintained and respected, and that no one branch of American industry should be fostered or protected by the Government, at the expense of any other branch of it; that tariffs on imports should be levied for purposes of revenue directly, and for purposes of protection only indirectly and incidentally. Such are some of the principles of our political creed. But if articles on any of these subjects, and in support of them, shall be introduced into the pages of this work, as they doubtless will be, the privilege of a single reply, to those who do not concur in them, will be fully and freely accorded, provided it be composed in a proper tone and temper, and be written with ability. This course cannot but be considered perfectly fair and liberal by all parties; but it must be understood that articles, commencing a political controversy, opposed to the views we advocate, will not be admissible, and that too, for reasons so plain and necessary, that, they need not be mentioned.
But what party will this work sustain in Religion? We answer distinctly, categorically and finally, and we wish all sects and denominations of Christians throughout the South, and throughout the whole Union, to listen to our answer, and bear it constantly in mind; This “ Southern Quarterly Review” will sustain and advocate the claims of no party in Religion, of none whatever, and our reasons for this course, which we intend to pursue most scrupulously, and without turning either to the right hand or to the left, on any account,
are few and simple and may be easily assigned, and shall, therefore, be here assigned, for the satisfaction and clear understanding of all parties. This work, then, will sustain the cause of no party in Religion, 1st, For the solemn and most conclusive reason, that in Christianity, professedly and really a religion of peace and love, there ought to be no party,--no conflicts among the followers of the Lamb of God and the Prince of Peace, but only harmony, agreement and brotherly affection. But admitting that there ought to be sects and parties in religion, as most unfortunately there are, this work will sustain the cause of no party in religion, 2dly, Because there are other and better instrumentalities, vehicles and places where, and through which, each and all religious parties may maintain their own views freely and without hindrance, and combat those of their opponents,-we mean the Pulpit, the theological Reviews and the religious Newspapers ; and 3dly, and lastly, Because this work is, and will be, as we have already announced to the public, devoted solely and exclusively to literary and political objects. Let it be understood, however, that no articles on biblical literature, which are distinctly such and nothing more nor less, no articles on the evidences of the christian religion, no articles on the being of God, no articles on the immortality of the soul, no articles on the necessity and importance of a good and holy life, no articles on subjects not litigated by religious sects, but in which all christians, of whatever sect, agree and harmonize, no articles in which the opinions even of those sects which are predominant throughout our Southern States, we mean the orthodox sects, such opinions, for instance, as the atonement, original sin, the trinity or any other peculiarities, are incidentally alluded to, but not argued or insisted on, shall be excluded from this work, but shall be freely and fully admitted into its pages, provided only that, from their literary merit and ability, they are worthy of a place in it. We mean to place this work on the most liberal basis, and to express no theological opinions in it, to which the most scrupulous Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Methodist, Baptist, Roman Catholic, or Christian of any name or denomination can possibly object. We have not come here to open the fountain of bitter waters, on the angry and time-worn arena of theological controversy. We have, on the contrary, come to this great, growing, interesting and prosperous emporium of our country, where the voice of truth can be heard far and wide, through the vallies and mountains of the whole South, in order to promote and accomplish objects of great weight and interest to the durability of our institutions, the salvation of this dear region, the glory of the whole Union, and the fame of American literature, -objects in which all denominations of Christians, and all orders of men, may cordially co-operate, and heartily aid us in promoting, with all their ability.
And now, commending this work to the protection of that Providence, without whose smiles all our efforts, however ambitious, are vain, we proceed, after many toils and labors expended in its establishment, to dedicate it to the citizens of the Southern States in particular, and, more generally, to the citizens of the United States, and, offering our grateful acknowledgments to our patrons, we lay before them, and commend to their generous clemency, the first number of THE SOUTHERN QUARTERLY REVIEW.
ART. II.-1. Message of the President of the United
States, returning to the Senate with his objections the bill entitled "An Act to Incorporate the Subscribers to the Fiscal Bank of the United States," August 16,
1841. 2. Message of the President, returning to the House of
Representatives with his objections, the bill entitled “An Act to provide for the better collection, safe keeping and disbursement of the Public Revenue, by means of a Corporation to be styled the Fiscal Corporation of the United States, September 9, 1841.
The documents, of which the titles are given above, have every where produced a degree of interest which seems to require some notice of the subject, beyond those contained in the ephemeral publications of the passing hour. Every individual in the community is dependant on commercial interchange, in some of its various forms, for most of the comforts, if not the actual necessaries of life.
Custom, founded on universal convenience, has established currency
as the common measure, by reference to which the exchangable value of all property is estimated. A just and impartial standard value, is, accordingly, of the highest importance to the permanent welfare of all ranks and pursuits, and is quite as intimately connected with the public security against fraud and imposition, throughout all the relations of society, as the uniformity of weights and measures.
The importance of correct opinions respecting currency, has become more essential, from the habitual notions of large portions of the population of our towns and cities, who employ the ordinary measure of exchangeable value, not only in estimating the comparative prices of saleable commodities, but as the standard of social worth and respectability. Every fluctuation to which this measure is subjected, from whatever cause, either aggravates or alleviates the burden of all mercantile contracts and pecuniary obligations, either lessening or enhancing the power of individuals to fulfil them. The maintenance of their position in society, depends, in the case of thousands, entirely on the movement of currency. After periods of general activity and universal confidence, stimulated by the abundance of currency, we have repeatedly seen its sudden scarcity strike terror through the hearts of multitudes, presaging calamities more awful to many, than death. Such changes in the amount, and consequent relative value of our commercial medium, are inevitable, under the system of currency which has been permitted to take root among
An alteration, produced by causes equally beyond the knowledge as the control of those whose livelihood is at stake, may have been imperceptibly going on for months together, until its results at once reveal themselves, by a crash of individual credit, as sudden and terrific as a clap of thunder in a clear sky. No foresight or precaution can furnish the slightest security to a merchant engaged in extensive transactions, that he will not find himself ruined by the sudden impossibility of complying with engagements, entered into with ordinary prudence, and the most perfect good faith. Exposed, by arbitrary variations in prices, from the general employment of factitious currency, to revulsions against which no sagacity can provide, families raised in the enjoyment of all the indulgences of opulence, are at once stripped of the means of even bare subsistence. Flung upon the cold charities of the world, they are frequently broken in spirit, by contrasting their privations with their former ease and aftiuence. Conscious of no act which should deprive them of their former estimation in society, they become sensitive to the slightest change in the treatment accorded them by their associates. Unless such victims of misfortune happen to be endowed with natural tempers of uncommon sweetness, they become misanthropic, and frequently desperate, losing, by degrees, all reliance upon God and confidence in their fellow men. Moral feeling being paralyzed, such recklessness of purpose and deportment is indulged, as is not only destructive of all social and domestic comfort, but dangerous to the highest security of our political institutions,—the hearty coöperation of every good citizen in the common welfare. Cherishing the belief, from the unscrupulous conduct of the votaries of mammon with whom they are brought in contact, that the whole community is corrupt and profligate, they regard integrity and prudence, either in public affairs or private transactions, to be the height of folly. By commencing dupes, they are apt to end knaves.
Such is a feeble sketch of some of the calamities which, for many years past, have been periodically visited upon the mercantile profession, in every part of the Union. The unexpected overturn of establishments possessing large capitals, and managed with great skill and experience, entirely through sudden changes in the comparative value of commercial currency, has shown that pursuit, under the existing system, to be, generally, a mere game of hazard. The great incentive of laudable industry and intelligent enterprise is vitally weakened. The best digested and conducted plans are found futile, in an unexpected crisis of currency, and the competency fairly earned and anticipated, by long and careful attention to business, is at once snatched away by those who appear to rely mainly upon blind chance. Indeed, good luck has become quite as essential to preserve the professional standing of a merchant, as to establish the character of a successful gambler.
The producing part of the community, are by no means exempted from a full participation in the disasters which periodically overturn so many of those who distribute the