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threat,-silenced by private expectations,swayed by sectional interests not in conformity with those of the community; if they become listless, inert, or altogether abstinent in the exercise of their public rights: just in proportion as the people thus violate or neglect their duty, will the head-springs of legislation become impure, and its waters flow on with baneful instead of beneficial influence in their


On the other hand, if those whom the people elect as their representatives enter the senate-chamber with personal ends to satisfy and sectional prejudices to serve-if they forget that, though elected by a district, they have to legislate for a country—the best intentions of the people may be frustrated. This danger is, however, comparatively small where the power granted is of short duration; and as legislation is controlled in its birth by the force of public opinion, upon which it must depend for successful operation, a representative government is generally true to a nation in proportion as a nation is true to itself.

To say that, the American People have not reached their own Ideal, is but to proclaim the loftiness of its requirements, and to acknowledge the imperfection of all human endeavour. But their best friends must go even beyond this, and confess that even fair and moderate expectations of fidelity to the great trust placed in their hands have not been fulfilled. Have not votes been sold to ambitious candidates, with whom private gain, and not the public good, has been the ruling motive? Have not good men too often retired from the arena of politics absorbed in pursuits of commerce, literature, or science, alike forgetting that the price of freedom in a Republic is, of necessity, personal fidelity and watchfulness, and that superior abilities or larger knowledge are not given for selfish gratification, but "for the glory of their Creator, and the relief of man's estate "? When in Europe Political Economy is asserting the great truth, that individual freedom, in the exercise of skill and the employment of capital, brings the largest gain to the State, it is sad enough to find Young America

putting on the cast-off clothes of the Old World, and endeavouring to reconstruct theories of protection now so entirely exploded. Starting upon her course with all European experience to warn or guide her, she has too persistently used it "like the sternlights of a ship, which serve only to illumine the track it has passed." She has not only by a false system of taxation prohibited or restricted commerce by high duties, or diverted it by bounties, but her compromises with slavery that evil so abhorrent to the framers of the constitution, that they believed it could not co-exist with freedom-have spread over North and South a moral leprosy; and exposed the free States to the suspicion that they abolished slavery, not because it was wrong, but because it was no longer remunerative. It has been said, that the transference of the fortunes of our race from Europe to America has been a gain to humanity of at least a thousand years. With no vested rights to obstruct the redress of social wrongs

-with no landed aristocracy, Norman or otherwise, to monopolize the soil-no national

debt to burden honest industry - "no entangling alliances" to entail the necessity of large standing armies and heavy taxation—has the progress of America in civilization, in all that constitutes the true life and dignity of a Nation, been commensurate with her advantages, and fulfilled the hopes of humanity?

Whatever may be the answer to these questions, the evils we have referred to are in no degree attributable to the American form of government. This form is exposed to dangers and inconveniences peculiar to itself; but those evils are common to all forms alike. In our own country, William III. practised parliamentary corruption as a system. Το Burnet's remonstrance he replied, "Nobody hates bribery more than I; but I have to do with a set of men who must be managed in this vile way or not at all. I must strain a point, or the country is lost.".

The Irish Union was notoriously bought with English gold. And Lord Macaulay only dates the extinction of the system as "within the memory of the present generation." Bribery

"History of England,” iii. 542.


of voters is rampant enough in our own day, as the recent revelations of Gloucester, Wakefield, and Berwick, testify. Even in our House of Lords, which, constitutionally, may not interfere with elections to the Lower House, it is not uncommon to hear "that the influence of property over its tenants-at-will is perfectly legitimate." The poverty of our free labourers is often unfavourably contrasted with the comfort of slaves, or the full diet of convicted felons. An extended suffrage is denied to our working classes, not because they have no right to its possession, but because they are, it is said, too uneducated for its exercise; and our philanthropists produce maps of the country, darkly shaded by ignorance, pauperism, and crime.

No new country ever has adopted, or most probably ever will adopt, a monarchical form of government, for the feeling of loyalty upon which this form must always depend cannot be transplanted at will. It is, moreover, a tree of slow growth, and for the value of its fruit must always be indebted to age and culture.

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