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of them, with truth and justice, say,
none of my subjects have worn mourning on my account?
How do all the military and bloody atchievments of that hero of France, the patriotic Henry the fourth, fade away into annihilalation, when we compare them with the everlasting glory of his benevolence, that prompted him to utter this memorable speech, “ I hope to live to see the day, when every poor man, in my kingdom, shall be able to put a fowl into his pot for his daily cinner?”
The Roman history has been an object of almost daily attention ; and volume upon volume has been written, filling up vast and numerous recesses of knowledge and of erudition, to describe its wars, its ovations, and its triumphs; at what particular gate of the Imperial city an ovation went in, and that through which a triumphal procession passed; its shows, its spectacles, its chronology, its beast-fights, its gladiatorial butcheries, its buildings, its extent, and I know not what besides. But who has written upon the happiness of this nation? A subject to all wise and good men infinitely more interesting than a collection of the medals of all the Emperors, or a gathering together of the inscriptions of all the stones and of all the marbles, that ever did, or did not exist.
66 And now,
It will be, also, necessary, to give a general view of the state of parties in Britain, in order to ascertain why the British administration of 1775 was deaf to the cry of that liberty, which had been born in England, and banished to America; that liberty, which now returned, riding on the foam-capt wave of the Atlantic, and whose spirit moved on the waters of Europe.
The existence of political parties in a kindom is absolutely necessary, in order to keep alive the spirit of liberty in that kingdom ; for if there were no party in opposition to the existing government of a country, that government, unwatched and unchecked, would soon degenerate into unmitigated despotism, by the necessary tendency, which all men in power have to endeavour to augment their authority, and to extend their sway. In arbitrary and tyrannic countries no clashing of parties exists; all is the calm and the silent torpor of anguish and of despair ; the despot commands, and the slave obeys; the monarch rages, and the people die. From the stagnant slumber of the lake are exhaled the steams of pestilence and of death ; but the unwearied agitation of the ocean-wave, and the incessant turbulence of the billows of the deep, preserve the mighty mass of waters from putrefaction and decay.
Without stopping to note the different shades, or to mark the minute varieties of political parties in Britain, it is sufficient to class them into two great opposite and contending bodies, the whigs, and tories, or the high and the low party. The whigs are strenuous advocates for maintaing the Constitution, as established at the British Revolution, in 1668 ; the tories are uniformly admirers and supporters of arbitrary power in the sovereign. The whigs invariably consult the interest of the people, according to the spirit of the British constitution, carefully guarding against the incroachments of the Crown; the tories always sacrifice the best interests of the
people to the will and pleasure of the existing monarch. Whence, as it is impossible that a king, from the mode in which hereditary princes are generally trained, should always know what measures are likely to promote the welfare of the community, it must, sometimes, happen, that the sovereign, even allowing his intentions to be pure and upright, will effect evil, instead of good, to the people, by carrying into execution the suggestions of his own peculiar wisdom.
Hence, as experience has invariably shewn, whenever a tory ministry has had the sway in Britain, that kingdom has always declined in national happiness and strength, has oppressed her people at home, and declined in her influence abroad, has been involved in perpetual wars; and has loaded the country, from age to age, with a burden of everlasting debt; and under a whig administration Britain has uniformly risen in the scale of prosperity and of power; has been loved at home, and revered abroad.
In addition to the prevalence of the Tory party in Britain there has, also, been introduced a new species of political manæuvering, unknown to former ages, that of the secret or double cabinet. This closet-machinery was manufactured by the late Lord Bute, first, tutor, and, then, minister to George the third of Britain, at the instigation, and under the direction of the late Earl of Bath, Pultney, the celebrated antagonist of Robert Walpole, who was so long minister to George the second of England. This secret cabinet consists of, what are called, the king's friends, a species of vermin not recognized by the British Constitution : these beings are distributed every where about through the royal household, and the secondary departments of the state ; are tied and bound together by a species of free-masonry ; so that the interest of one is the interest of all; if one, even the meanest of these reptiles, that burrow under the British throne, is offended, all take the alarm, and the royal ear is immediately besieged with complaints and filled with the most insidious insinuations against the offender, who is soon driven from his office, and made to learn, that, when such men sway the sceptre of a country, the post of honour is a private station.
These animals are not indeed, the ostensible, but they are really, the efficient ministers of Britain ; and accordingly as the apparent ministers, that is, those who are esteemed as such by the world, at large, because they bear the name and title of filling certain offices, as that of first lord of the treasury, chancellor of the Exchequer, secretary of state for the home department, &c. &c.—conduct themselves conformably or not conformably to the will and plea
sure of this secret cabinet, are these ministers continued in their places, or cashiered and turned out of their offices with all the promptitude of dispatch.
The great, the disinterested, the dignified patriot of Britain, the late Earl of Chatham, declared, that very soon after he had been invited, and caressed, and cajoled into an assent to come in at the head of a certain administration in Britain, in order, if possible, to prop up and to strengthen the fallen and sinking state, into which the nation had been dragged by the pernicious deeds of former ministers, he found a strong tide of secret influence setting in directly against him, and obstructing every measure, which he proposed, and endeavoured to carry into execution for the benefit of the British people :"the opposition,” said Chatham, “ I do not fear; an open enemy I am, always, prepared to meet; from such an enemy I can never shrink; but how am I to parry the secret, the unexpected stabs of the concealed ruffian ; what armour is to defend me against the dagger of the midnight assassin ?"
It is now well known, that to the accursed influence of this secret cabinet, Britain owes her fatal quarrel with America, and all the consequent pressure of an enormous augmentation of her national debt, and the burden of a taxation, increased beyond all power of former belief, and swallowing up full two thirds of the property expended by each individual in the necessary articles of consumption ; and, above all, the irreparable loss of those hosts and armies of her bravest sons, who have whitened with their bones, and fattened with their blood, the soil of other lands, and the verdure of foreign shores; and by their death have filled Britan: nia's sea-girt isle with the wailings and the lamentations of many a sweet babe fatherless, and many a widow mourning.
It must not, also, be forgotten, that from this secret cabinet has arisen the custom of sending abroad, as foreign ambassadors, men, by no means qualified to fill that important and arduous station. While other countries send out, as their ambassadors, men well acquainted with the principles of political science, and well versed in the internal resources and the foreign relations of their own kingdom, the British ambassadors abroad, too often present themselves as laughing-stocks to the courts, where they are sent, and produce the most serious evils to their own country by being continually out-witted in every diplomatic transaction by their more acute and better-informed rivals of other nations, particularly the French, who have always been justly celebrated for the sagacity and the penetration of their envoys.
Again, it is owing to this secret cabinet, that the press, in Britain, has been, of late years, so much crippled, and the voice of the people stifled by the clanking of the chains of the bastile and of the dungeon; witness the numberless prosecutions for libels against the British government during the reign of Britain's present king the frequency of such prosecutions is, always, in the direct ratio of the weakness and the cruelty of the existing administration in Britain; for a just and a liberal ministry, confidently resting on its own integrity, and on the affection of a grateful people, suffers all the weak and ineffectual effusions of malignant scribblers against its measures to perish in silent oblivion, and in secret scorn.-When Lord Chatham was shewn some violent abuse against himself and his administration, and urged to prosecute the author for a libel against the British government, he smiled, and replied,—“In order to preserve the liberty and the happiness of Britain, it is necessary, that the press should be free as the air, a chartered libertine.
Whoever has contemplated the silent and the secret march of death, by which the double cabinet has regularly advanced towards the accomplishment of the destruction of Britain, is well aware, that the British people have more to dread from the machinations of that cabinet, than they have to fear from the coalesced bayonets of their foreign foes. The tall and stately bark, which has braved the thunder of the cannon's roar, and has outlived all the horrors of the storm of war, full often falls a prey to the concealed, but destructive efforts of the corroding worm. Britain may defy the broad array of Napoleon's hostile force ; but she will soon bow her head unto the earth, where all must rest, if she still suffers these accursed fiends to continue to poison the cup of her existence, to lift the envenomed chalice to her lips, and compel her to drain the fatal bowl to the very dregs of agony and of death ; if she still suffers this canker-worm of corruption to gnaw at her heart's core, and eat away all her hopes of present peace and all her expectations of future joy.
It was by the infamous exertions of the double cabinet, composed of all the old mercenary Swiss of state, made up of all the embattled legions of veteran pensioners and practised instruments of a corrupted court, that the earnest wishes of a great majority of the British people for a cordial, a lasting bond of amity with their brethren on this side of the Atlantic, were set at nought, and frustrated. It was this double cabinet, that goaded America with restraining and penal laws, beyond any example of former times. And what