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FOR NOVEMBER, 1849.
ORGANIZATION OF THE PARTY.
unity, the one-mindedness, if we may be allowed the expression, of the people.
A GREAT deal has been said in some quar- sense, considered the republic as a moral ters about the necessity for a more solid power, standing for a moral person; repreorganization of the party, and as proposi-senting not the aggregate, but the moral tions for a more solid organization seem to imply a loose organization, we invite the serious attention of our friends to the following considerations of the necessary grounds of Whig organization, existing, or to be hereafter.
Perhaps, after a fair examination of these grounds, and a survey of our present condition, they may be better satisfied than they are willing to admit themselves at present; for it seems to be just now regarded by some as a duty simply to be dissatisfied, waiting meanwhile for a good reason for dissatisfaction to turn up betimes.
We propose therefore, to set forth in order, the principles which seem to have actuated the party since its original organization, and to have been the real basis of that organization. If our friends are satisfied on their perusal, that there is no present cause of division upon the question of principle, then we have at least the certainty before us of future unanimity when our less dangerous difficulties shall have been removed by the effects of time, and the discretion of our conscientious leaders.
The Whig Party have been always distinguished from their opponents, by the attribution of a beneficent and protective power to government. And it is in regard of that attribution, that they assert for themselves the name of "republicans," believers in the efficacy of law and of the moral and intelligent functions of the government. They have, though in a qualified
VOL. IV. NO. V NEW SERIES.
They have always been the party of union, a word which conveys much. They have wished to confirm the union, for the sake of the harmony, majesty, and power of the idea of a nation; and of the grand and effective passion of patriotism, which is sure to issue from such an idea. They have cherished this idea as they received it from Washington.
The two parties which sprang up during the formation of the Constitution, were alike characterized by a desire for union, and a feeling for the moral dignity of the nation as a whole; and by their united efforts, the Constitution of union took its present form. It is true indeed, that one party aimed at a more centralized and powerfully constructed government; and the acts of their successors, stretching the executive sway to the very verge of unconstitutionalty, show that they have not lost sight of their original aim: while the other party exhibited a proper jealousy for the independence of the State Sovereignties, as they had originally, in the Declaration itself, insisted on the inviolability of individual rights.
But for the same reason that they contended for Individual Rights, and for State Rights, they contended for the national honor; they wished the citizen to stand upon a footing of equality and liberty with his fellow citizens; they wished the sovereign
state to justify her equality with other sovereign states; and they wished the nation, as one people, to stand upon terms of equality and liberty among other nations, and to resent with a becoming spirit the slightest encroachment upon her individualities. They consequently declared war with England, when England had trampled upon our nationality, and insulted our flag, the badge of nationality.
They went farther, and urged upon the people the necessity of making themselves independent, in every way, of the mother country, by the production of every species of manufacture within themselves. It was a measure of national jealousy, and of economical policy, to make the people strong, able, and independent. Jefferson advised the application of the surplus revenue to works of internal improvement. Monroe proposed an amendment of the constitution, to enable government to enter upon a grand system of national improvement. Tariffs were voted as a protection against English capitalists, and the salutary national prejudices of the people against foreign interference, were cherished and
It is not to be supposed that this policy of opposition and independence originated in a personal pique of those distinguished statesmen against the government of Great Britain; we are obliged, in reason, to attribute it to their sense of the necessity of fusing together into one nation the people of the several states, by compelling the several members to depend upon each other, and not upon foreigners. The effects of the system which was introduced, and successfully too, are now visible in the vast increase of our home manufacture of those fabrics which are among the necessaries of life. They knew that agriculture in so rich a country as ours, would flourish of itself, and by the force of nature and circumstances, but they saw the necessity of legislative aid for the promotion of other branches of human industry. Although the doctrine of protection stands at present upon grounds more economical and more strictly defensible than in the days of Jefferson, it may serve to strengthen and vivify our faith to recur sometimes to the more passionate, and in a certain sense, the more patriotic arguments of our forefathers. Let us now recapitulate in brief the
doctrines that have been advocated by Republican Whig Journals during the last few years.
1. They have expressed in various forms and in a thousand diverse instances, their belief that a republican government, as the functionary of the people, possesses a beneficent and protective, as well as a coercive power.
2. They have opposed the acquisition of territory as part of a system of conquest and aggrandizement; deeming it impossible for a government that is the mere representative of rights, to violate rights.
3. They have refused to elect an Executive for factious ends; and have endeavored to reduce the executive authority within its constitutional limits.
4. They have declined to interpose for the violent reformation of State constitutions; and have insisted upon restraining the Central Power from interference with the affairs of States.
5. They have conceded to the people of the territories the liberty of shaping constitutions according to their sovereign will and pleasure; and have refused to sanction the affixing of political conditions to a State charter. They would not allow a factious or a fanatical party to interpose their "peculiar institutions," or their moral usurpations, during the formation of a State. The State once formed they hold it free to establish under the constitutional guaranty, such a republican form of government as it may of itself originate.
6. They have refused to adopt as tional," the opinions of particular States, be they slave or free :-doctrines of forcible revolution in the North and South, have alike met their reprobation.
7. They have labored to defend the agriculturist from the necessity forced upon him of seeking a precarious foreign market;
by creating at hand a manufacturing population. They have established it as a principle of public as well as of private economy, that the way to wealth is to make the country feed, clothe, and cherish itself" to cause the products of the land to be consumed upon the land." They have shown, too, that the foreign trade depends upon the quantity and variety of home production, and that commerce will grow and extend itself in proportion to the growth and extent of home industry.
8. Instead of destroying, they have upheld and protected credit. Maintaining that credit is the principal bond of communities, and even of nations, and that the protection and confirmation of credit is one of the first duties of a government, as it is of an individual, they have refused to repudiate debt, and have protested urgently against the policy of repudiation.
These three things then, they have held sacred, the public liberty, the public honor, and the public honesty: as the upright citizen is jealous for himself and those dependent on him, they have been jealous for the Nation, and for the sovereignties which compose it.
9. Nor have they been wanting in attention to the general progress of the people, in wealth and civilization. Wherever it has been shown that the aid of government was absolutely necessary to the commencement or the completion of important enterprises, to furnish harbors for commerce, to give the farmer a vent for his surplus products, or to furnish for him a cheap and speedy channel for the exchange of commodities, (the existence of such channels conferring all its value upon the surplus of agriculture,) they have not hesitated to appropriate the public funds for such purposes. The party in opposition make a merit of continually protesting, and have even done us the honor to incorporate their protest into almost every "platform" and bulletin they have issued, against engaging in "a vast and unlimited system of Internal Improvements," as though the advocates of Internal Improvements were a body of insane theorists, set on by interested jobbers to engage the government in a boundless outlay of money, under the general notion of doing good.
Such, however, it is well known, is not nor never was true of the Whig Republican Party. They do indeed, as did the majority of the founders of the Constitution, especially those who impressed upon
the government its most popular features, maintain the general doctrine, that government should interpose its aid where the wealth of States and individuals is insufficient, or improper to be employed, for the completion of necessary works of improvement, in the navigation of rivers, the improvement of harbors, the establishment of military roads, post-offices, telegraphs, &c., &c., but common sense has never so far deserted them as to allow them to substitute the State or the Nation for the individual in preference. That were to strike at the first principle of our liberties, that the citizen is the first and primary power and that his private energy must accomplish all the good it can, before the State or the Nation can be justly called upon. To know how far the State may be substituted for the citizen, and how far individual enterprise may be paralyzed, and individual liberty and property violated by such interference, we have only to look at the proceedings of the New Radical Party of France, that is driving that Republic swiftly to its ruin, through the ridiculous plans of those who wish to destroy all property and liberty, and make the State master alike of the time, the credit, and the industry of individuals, and become the director of the very bodies and souls of its citizens. As we avoid communism, we avoid the interference of the State in enterprises proper to individuals or companies.
Such, if we have rightly stated them,. being the accepted principles of Whig organization, we must concede that the organization of the party is firmly and unimpeachably established, and is not affected in the main by the discontents or dissensions of the weaker members. If individuals are dissatisfied with the conduct of any particular leader, they may console themselves with the reflection that a weak leader well sustained is better than a strong one ill supported.
SHORT CHAPTERS ON PUBLIC ECONOMY.
THAT THE PRODUCTS OF THE LAND, SHOULD BE CONSUMED UPON THE LAND.
THE bold application of this first principle of agricultural economy to the entire economy of a nation, was first made, if we mistake not, by Carey, in his Treatise entitled, Past, Present, and Future. To illustrate its value and extent of application, a few striking examples may be adduced.
The shreds and tatters of worn out garments, of cotton and of linen, laid up by thrifty housewives, and exchanged for tinware and pedlars' articles, together with such as rags, are picked up in the streets, and amid the filth of cities, when collected into bales and sold to the manufacturer of paper, have an annual value of about $5,000,000.
Five millions of property are thus annually created by the saving up of shreds and tatters, an example of economy which resembles the saving up of litter by a thrifty agriculturist, who gathers together the manure, weeds, and refuse straw of his farm, and lays it in a heap, for the preparation of compost, with which to fatten his acres.
Let us suppose that the farmer, instead of an economical saving of this otherwise worthless material, sold off his hay, his milk, and his cattle, to purchase manure for his farm. The result would be that he would find himself gradually impoverished by the process; and so it would be with this nation, were they to allow the shreds and tatters of their garments to perish unregarded in the earth; and, in place of converting them into paper, were to purchase that useful and elegant result of industry and economy from other nations, more saving and economical than themselves.
By a tariff upon paper and rags, which yields but a very small return to the revenue, five millions of actual, tangible property, has been annually created out of nothing.
Let us now suppose that an old and experienced agriculturist, understanding the maxim, that the products of the land, should be consumed upon the land, was about establishing his son, or some person over whom he had guardianship, upon a new farm in his own vicinity, and observing the unthrifty habits of the young farmer, and especially noticing this neglect in him, that he allowed the refuse of his land to waste upon the land; and instead of converting this into useful compost for the fattening of his acres, laid out the little ready money he possessed, in the purchase of straw and manure from the neighboring farmers. Let us suppose, we say, that the elder and wiser father or guardian should absolutely forbid this proceeding; or, for every shilling thus foolishly expended by his ward, should deduct a six-pence from his income, in order to compel him by mere necessity, into a more judicious application of his means, and a better course of industry; this procedure of the old man in the treatment of the younger and more ignorant person, would resemble very strongly the conduct of a Whig majority, compelling a rout of thriftless free-traders, to allow the national industry to operate for the benefit of the national wealth.
The analogy however is defective, and in several points. The Whig majority on the one side, represents a thrifty old farmer, endeavoring to bring his ward to reason; and the rout of free-traders on the other side, represents some scheming store-keeper or barterer in the village, who finds means to procure large quantities of manure, and wishes to convert it into ready money, at the expense of his inexperienced neighbor.
But even then the analogy is not perfect; and to make it so, we must suppose
that the young farmer employs laborers upon his farm rather than work himself; that he prefers the easy life of what is called a gentleman farmer, and that he finds, on calculating the wages of his laborers employed in collecting litter and manure, and making compost, that they seem to cost him as much in making, as he would lay out in purchasing manure. He therefore wishes to dismiss some of his laborers, and turn their wages to the purchase of material for the fattening of his land. These laborers, thrown out of employment, establish farms on each side of him; and being willing to do their own work, with their own hands, and by industry and ingenuity to make the compost which their more luxurious neighbor buys, while he is paying money they are making it, and as he grows poorer, they are growing richer, and underselling him in the market. Thus it is with the free-trader; finding it cheaper to buy the manufactured articles of foreign countries, he allows the refuse and raw material of his own to rot upon the land, or to be sold for unremunerative prices to foreigners he is perhaps a rich man, and the owner of large estates, a gentleman farmer; he refuses to allow the necessary protection which gives employment to the poor about him; they consequently move off upon new lands, and working them with their own hands, are soon able to undersell and to ruin the once wealthy proprietor of the old lands; and this is the history of agriculture in the Atlantic States.
Denied that necessary protection which they required for their industry, by the richer and more influential persons who over-topped them, they moved off into
new territories, and established new farms and plantations, from which a deluge of cheap production has been poured down upon the markets of the Atlantic States.
Had it not been for a certain modicum of protection, wrested by main force from the rich landholders and proprietaries, the condition of these states would have been truly deplorable; they would have supported, at this time, a pauper population sparsely inhabiting an ill cultivated and ungrateful soil. Such is indeed the present condition of a very large part of those states.
The policy and economy of New England has saved, however, at least herself from degradation. That policy has been to consume the products of the country, within the limits of the country, by a thrifty industry which converts the coarsest and commonest materials, even ice and granite, into a source of wealth—a pertinacious industry, which gathers up the shreds and fragments of every art and trade, and converts them into riches-a jealous industry, which refuses to let any material, given by nature, escape from its hands until the last degree of value has been imparted to it by labor-an industry, saving of time; which brings the anvil near to the spade and pick axe, and the loom near to the plough; which builds the furnace near the mine, the forge near the furnace; which places the factory amid farms, in order that the two may cheaply feed and clothe each other. It is this industry which has saved New England from the consequences of a ruined agriculture, the worst consequences that can befal a
INCREASE OF NATIONAL WEALTH.
THE profits of industry begin with gath- | first labors serve only to supply the immeering, reaping, mining, fishing, hunting, diate wants of the laborers and their fam&c. Previous to the gathering of any pro-ilies, there is no profit, but it almost alduct, a certain amount of labor is required to be expended, either in preparing the earth for the reception of seed, or, as in fishing, in a preparation of nets, tackle, &c., or in mining, by making excavations in the earth. If the products of these
ways happens that the labor of one man, applied to one object, will procure more than is necessary for his immediate subsistence and that of his family. The surplus, exchanged for the surplus of other producers, constitutes profit or gain: but