« AnteriorContinuar »
Å SPIECH WHICH OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN DELIVERED IN THE HOUSE OF
137 HORÆ GERMANICÆ. No. XXV. The Golden Fleece,
155 To IANTHE, IN ABSENCE. BY DELTA,
176 Ane Rychte GUDE AND PREYTIOUS BALLANDE. COMPylit be MR HOUGGE,
177 NOTICES, TRAVELLING AND POLITICAL, BY a WhiG-HATER,
184 ZUINGLIUS, THE Swiss REFORMER,
211 ELEGIAC STANZAS. BY DELTA,
217 THE CLARE ELECTION,
219 THE MUSIC OF THE SPHERES,
225 RESIDENCES OF Our Living Poets. No. I. BremHILL PARSONAGE, 226 SALMONIA,
EDINBURGH: WILLIAM BLACKWOOD, No. 17, PRINCE'S STREET, EDINBURGH;
AND T. CADELL, STRAND, LONDON;
To whom Communications (post paid) may be addressed.
PRINTED BY BALLANTYNE AND CO. EDINBURGH.
A SPEECH WHICH OUGHT TO HAVE BEEN DELIVERED IN THE HOUSE
OF COMMONS DURING THIS SESSION OF PARLIAMENT.
TO JOHN BULL, ESQ.
London, July 8, 1828. MY DEAR AND HONOURED PARENT, A LETTER which I addressed to you through the medium of this Magazine on the eve of the last General Election, will justify me for soliciting your attention to the following Speech. The feeling which made me wish to influence you in the choice of your Representatives, now makes me anxious to prevail on you to examine how the Representatives you selected have discharged their duties.
Let not the Speech have the less weight with you, because it is not presented in a newspaper, graced with the name of some accomplished orator. In so far as concerns your interests, it is a far more important and valuable one than any speech that was delivered in either House during the session. Of its other characteristics, it does not become me to speak, and they are of minor consequence. In order that it
make the greater impression on you, imagine that it was actually uttered in Parliament by one of your favourite speakers, that it was greeted with thunders of applause, and that it now meets your eye in a newspaper, eulogized as a specimen of finished eloquence.
Your imagination, my dear sir, has in late years been accustomed to flights intinitely more difficult, daring, and extravagant; but, however, if, in your present sober and dejected condition, it be incapable of this, let it slumber, and have recourse to other and more trust-worthy faculties. Look at your agriculture-your shipping-your silk and glove trades—in a word, at all your interests. Look at the records of your criminal courts, and at the general state of your working population. Look, with a determination to use your eyes as you were wont to use them; and to reason from ocular proofs as you were wont to reason. Do this, and then read the Speech.
To prevail with you, I need not on this occasion employ reproach and rcmonstrance. You have not trod the flames in vain ; the cup of afflice Vol. XXIV.
tion has not visited your lips, to be disregarded. I speak not now to a man infatuated and prejudiced, deaf to reason and blind to demonstration ; but I address one, rational, free from delusion, anxious to discover truth, and open to conviction. Alas, alas ! that the change has not been wrought in you by other things than loss and misery !
After you have read the Speech again and again, compel your Representatives, while they are separated, to accompany you singly through the confiscation, want, and suffering, which they have produced. Make them examine the books of the farmer, shipowner, and their other victims show them the family which they have dragged from affluence into bankruptcy-and let them see not only the agonies of the husband and father, but the privations and sorrows of the wife, the mother, and the children-take them to those whose hopes they have for ever blasted, and to the graves of those whose hearts they have broken—constrain them to enter the hovel of the labourer, whose wages they have taken away or reduced, so that he cannot provide his family with necessaries; and let them analyze fully his penury and wretchedness—and lead them through your prisons to observe the insolvency, vice, and crime, which have flowed from their measures. Spare them not-suffer them not to close their eyes—but force them into the most perfect knowledge of the ruined fortunes, the miserable insufficient meal, the rags, the hunger, the ignorance, the distress, and the wickedness, not only of the individual and family, but of the class—the tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and millions. If all this will work in them no reformation—if it will extort from them no contrition, and no confession of error—then brand on the forehead of each,-A STRANGER TO ALL THAT THE ENGLISHMAN SHOULD KNOW; AND AN ENEMY TO ALL THAT THE ENGLISHMAN
In my last letter, I was compelled, by, the conduct you were displaying, to use language scarcely warranted by filial duty; and I, therefore, did not mention my relationship. I now avow myself to be in birth, blood, residence, and affection, one of your offspring. I make the arowal, that my words may have the greater influence. I have been proud of my descent; I have valued my plain English name above the most splendid title of foreign nobility; and I have never trod the hallowed dust of my native land, without having had elasticity imparted to my spring, and haughtiness to my demeanour, by the reflection that I was an English man. In me, this has been something better than prejudice, for I have known it to be amply justified by what my country contained. But, alas ! where is now the boasted superiority of my country over all others, in security of property, and the means of happiness ? When I see the vast mass of my countrymen stripped of their property and comforts, doomed to endure greater privations than the inhabitants of almost any foreign pation, and placed in circumstances which must demoralize them, and plunge them into barbarism-when I see this, I must exchange my pride for humiliation ; I must blush and weep for England, or be a disgrace to the name of Englishman.
By that blood with which you have filled my veins, in the name of all that you have taught me to love and worship, and for the sake of every thing dear to your character and weal, I conjure you to shake off youn dejection, and do your duty. Speak as you were wont to speak--let the plain, comprehensive, powerful, and majestic common sense of John BULL again be heard—and you will be obeyed by your House of Commons.
I remain, my dear sir, your affectionate and dutiful son, and faithful and unchangeable friend,
ONE OF THE OLD School.
racter, our interests, and the interests The grand characteristic, not only of the community. Our loss of chaof wisdom, but likewise of sanity, in racter alone, independently of what it the individual is--he continually re- is to ourselves, is a mighty public fers to the fruits of his past conduct evil; and we may, by a single perni. for his guidance in the present and cious measure, take away the fortunes, the future. Does he regulate his fa- bread, and peace of millions. If we mily by particular rules—he examines act the part of lunatics, we are above what they yield, to ascertain whether the reach of the law; our lunacy is he shall adhere to, or change them. despotic; it may by a breath sink Does he adopt a new system of mae half the nation into beggary and nagement on his estate or his farm, in wretchedness, and there is no appeal his counting-house or manufactory from its mandates. If this House, sir, he rigidly scrutinizes its products, to be at this moment in the possession of determine whether he shall persist in common reason, it will require from it, or return to the old one. "Does he me no farther proofs that it is its duty make experiments in the conducting to do, what it is my object to induce of his affairs-he carefully watches it to do, viz. to institute a rigid intheir results, to decide whether he quiry into the consequences which its shall continue or abandon them. Does conduct in late years have yielded to he deport himself in any peculiar itself and the community. Other inanner in society-he acquaints him- proofs, however, I shall place before self with the impression it makes, in it; and such proofs too, as must eiorder to judge whether any change in ther gain its conviction, or show it to it be called for by his interests and be labouring under lunacy, perfect and character. If he do differently--if he incurable. follow maxims, persist in systems, con This House, sir, from nature, duty, tinue experiments, and persevere in and desert, as well as from interest demeanour, without noticing or regu- and prejudice, ought always to hold lating his conduct by what
they pro a very high place in public estimation. duce it forms a conclusive proof that In it, speaking constitutionally, the he is destitute of the reason which nation should find a child born of its distinguishes man from the beast of own loins, uttering its own sentiments, the field; and that he will plunge and loving it with filial fondness—a bimself into irretrievable 'ruin. On champion to protect it from every such a proof, the world pronounces enemy--a comforter to assuage every him a lunatic, and the law treats him sorrow-and a friend and benefactor as one.
to remedy every ill, and remove every The case, with little exception, is distress. If ever the nation withdraw the same with the body of men in from us its confidence, and array itits collective capacity. This body can self against us, it must be taken as no more act in utter disregard of what conclusive evidence, that our conduct its past conduct has produced, with is fearfully erroneous and injurious. out proving that it is destitute of the What, sir, is the case at present ? essentials of common reason, and that This House has lost public confidence. it will plunge itself and others into The country-I do not mean by the ruin, than the individual. The world term the multitude disqualified by may call its members severally sane, ignorance and delusion from judging but in the aggregate it will treat them correctly, but I mean the intelligent as madmen; the law may not restrain part of the community, the knowthem as lunatics in its letter and acts, ledge, sense, and wisdom of the counbecause it cannot, but it will do this try-has arrayed itself against us. in its principle.
While the independent and enlightTo no body of men, sir, would this ened men of all parties unite to con apply more powerfully, than to that demn our conduct, it is only supportof which this House consists. Our ed by the (thick-and-thin interested duties are of a kind, which nothing partizans of our leaders. Amidst that but a perpetual and severe examina part of society, which can only forsake tion of the fruits of our past conduct us when we deserve to be forsaken, can enable us to discharge properly. Nothing is more common than to hear And our errors are of a kind which this House called “ a public nuisance;" must be destructive alike to our cha- it constantly looks forward to our as.