of this country, he felt as much as any man; | This he admitted ; and if the noble lord and if the question were simply, to take a had openly come forward, and stated the sum from the sufferers of England to give to necessity of it, he should have felt pleasure those of Russia, he should give it his nega in concurring in the grant. But in saying tive. The distresses in England, it might this, he hoped he should not be thought be proper to remark, though brought on to patronize the system of subsidizing. partly by causes beyond the controul of The state of things in Russia arose from government, had been in part caused by her having engaged in this virtuous strugcircumstances which it would have been gle unbought by us. The situation to in their power to prevent. If speedy and which she would have been reduced by an conciliatory measures had been adopted alliance with France, was before her eyes, with regard to America, a very large por and without communication with this tion of this distress would not have existed. country, or, if with communication, he At the beginning of the session, the noble was convinced, without assurance of suplord opposite (Castlereagh) had said, that port, she nobly took her part. For these the most effectual way of assisting Russia, reasons he should support the vote; and -the way in which that country wished to he was anxious that it might be seen by be assisted,was, by efforts in Spain : the distressed manufacturers, that it was that noble lord bad also said, that efforts as not from any insensibility to their suffergreat as the power of the country would ings, that the vote of one member, at least, admit of had been made; that the manner was determined, but by a sincere convicin which that campaign had ended, was tion that their interests would have been not to be attributed to failure on the part of more injured than served by refusing this ministers, but to the limited resources of grant. the country; that the country, in fact, was Mr. Bathurst said, that the right hon. unable to do any thing more; but now gentleman had not been happy in the came this proposition, to send 200,0001. selection of his topics, which were not not to assist Spain, but Russia, while this reasons against the grant, but insinuations Jast power wished it to be applied to against the motives of those who had in. Spain. He appealed to every gentleman troduced it. The word “

The word “speedy” appresent whether his statement of what had plied, not to the absolute length of time, been said was not accurate. He should be but to the nature of the case. If, on comglad to know whether all means had been munication with our ambassador at Peterstaken by the government to render the burgh, relief in specie should be judged country able to support this additional ex expedient, there could be no difficulty in pence? The Bill which had been brought making it immediate. The word "effecforward by an hon. gentleman during the tual” had been applied, not to the relief lass session, the Sinecure Bill, would, had afforded by this government alone, but in it passed, have afforded enough for this conjunction with that of Russia. To what grant. It might be said that the Bill had pitch the munificence of Russia might expassed that House; but though it might tend he did not know, but he hoped, that not be proper to allude to what had passed in conjunction with the aid afforded by elsewhere, he could not help remarking, us, it would be effectual to the great obthat if ministers were as earnest in their ject intended. The next objection was, wishes for the abolition of useless places, that it would go, not to the sufferers, but as other members in that House, the event to the Russian treasury, and under this would have been different; or thus much persuasion, the right hon. gentleman had of the session would not have passed, thought the Message properly designated without a message on that subject from the by cant or hypocritical, which terms (had crown. If, however, the House were to that conception been correct), would not negative this grant, more harm would be have been imisapplied. But did that right done to the sufferers of this country, than hon. gentleman think, that the paltry sum could be retrieved by the possession of of 200,000l. could be thought of as an aid the 200,000l. Russia had been brought to Russia in such a war as she was en. to the state in which she was, by refusing gaged in? The next objection regarded to submit to the continental system; and Spain, and ministers had been accused of if the result of the struggle were to enable contradiction in withdrawing this sum her to keep open the markets of that vast from Spain, and applying it to Russia. empire to our manufactures, she would This had received a negative from his side soon repay the sum we might now advance. of the House, not on account of any incor, mixed

[ocr errors]

rectness in the right hon. gentleman's, small sum which they were that night statement of what had been said, but be called on to vote, afford them relief? cause that had been spoken of as to be Though the contest in Russia might have applied in aid of the government, which a tendency to increase our own security, was intended for the relief of the people. yet to imagine that this 200,000l. could The right hon. gentleman had justly be a bond of unity between that nation stated, ibat more good would be done to and ourselves, would be to contradict the our manufacturers by granting this sum to testimony of experience. It had been the conciliate Russia, than by doling it out interest of Russia to enter into amity with among them; but with this had been us; she had acted in pursuance of that in

up the consideration of our policy as terest, and in accordance with that in. to America. Without attempting to enter terest she would act hereafter. It had on this question at present, it was not so been said, that committees of nobles had clear as that right hon. gentleman seemed been formed that the emperor bad exertto imply, that hostilities had arisen en. ed himself to afford relief, by rebuilding tirely from the misconduct of government, habitations, and by alleviating the poigand not at all from the spirit of the Ame- nant misery of the sufferers. It did, in. ricans. , He was astonished to hear the deed, behove the Russian government to right hon. gentleman speak as he had do away with all the pomp of state-to ,done of the Sinecure Offices' Bill. It was apply all the resources of the empire to true, that by a total disregard of vested in this object: it was more particularly the terests, a fund might be produced; but as duty of that government to do so, from to the Bill, it had been acknowledged last the commission of an act, singular in mosession by the hon. gentleman who pro- dern history-the conflagration of Mosposed it, that though it would be grateful cow. This grant could be considered as to public feeling, yet in a pecuniary sense no other than a subsidy in aid of the war it would be nugatory.

in Russia; for by discharging the Russian Mr. Ponsonby, in explanation, said, that government of the duty of applying a sum -as it was the duty of the Russian govern- equal to this to its suffering subjects, it ment to protect its own subjects, this could left an equal sum applicable to the purpose operate in no other way than as a subsidy of driving the French from the empire, or to that government. As to the Sinecure to that of crushing their power. It was a Bill, he did not mean that the whole sum subsidy then-a paltry and contemptible of 200,0001. would be found in the Trea- subsidy as to the purpose of the war. sury, but that by that measure a saving From the resistance of Russia, if wisely would be effected equal to the interest of taken advantage of, the greatest blessings that sum, which must be funded ; and of might ensue. This, however, was as yet which the interest must now be paid by uncertain. In the mean time, there were the people.

in some parts of this country cases of as Mr. Whitbread was sorry to say, that crying distress, as, out of the reach of war, the grant would not pass unanimously. On could possibly be. Suppose a grant proposthe Message being first read it had struck ed to ihese sufferers; would it not be said him that the grant was not proper; and on to be improper to attempt to alleviate pri. discussion with friends whom he respected, vate distress? But would it not be an act of and who entertained sentiments on the sub- justice to our own country, before we went ject different from his own, he had not abroad with our charity, to know whefound reason to change his opinion. Some ther we had not objects at home, to whom of the grounds of his dissent from the grant it might be extended with advantage? had been stated by his right hon. friend. Lord Castlereaghdisclaimed the idea that, He did not, moreover, think it just to this in consequence of this grant, we should country to take money out of the pockets be called upon to supply the wants of of our starving manufacturers, to apply it every country that might be reduced to a to sufferers to whom, unhappily, it could state of distress by the aggression of be of no use. Those unfortunate beings France. A principle so broad would lead wbo, as the Chancellor of the Exchequer to consequences, which, in the present couhad stated, had sought shelter from the vulsed state of Europe, it would be imposseverity of a Russian winter in their forests, sible for this country to meet. But the were now, alas! as senseless as the snow question was, whether the sufferings of the with which they were surrounded : and people of Russia were not brought home how, if they continued to exist, could the to our feelings, both by the heroic exers

tions they had made, and by the important the shadow of the laws and constitution. effect which those exertions were likely to He regretted the disapprobation of the bave on our own interests, in such a man motion expressed by the hon. member ner as to call for every relief and assis- who spoke last, but bore testimony to the tance in our power? The efforts of Russia manliness and sincerity with which that had been as gigantic as her sufferings had hon. gentleman, on all occasions, declared been without parallel; and it was not to be his opinions in that House. expected that equal sacrifices would again Sir P. Burdert said, be had heard many be made to call upon the House for their parts of the noble lord's speech with pleainterposition. An hon. member had treat. sure, but there was no part of it which he ed the proposal to afford relief to the Rus. had heard with so much pleasure, as the sian people as chimerical, and even liable word peace,' a word which he had not to the suspicion of hypocrisy. He should for a very long time heard from the other have thought this character much more side of the House. If he thought the preapplicable to the measure, if it had been sent grant would really tend to facilibrought forward in the shape (which that tale that most desirable object, a secure hon. gentleman recommended) of a sub- and honourable peace, there was no inan sidy to the emperor Alexander. Nothing who would more readily and cordially could be more contemptible or insulting, agree to it than he would. He sincerely than a grant to such an extent to a power hoped that all the sacrifices and exertions struggling with the difficulties which which had been made, and of which so Russia had to encounter, and on the im. much had been said, would not end in a mense scale on which her military opera delusive sound, and that we should not be tions were carried on. But though its ef embroiled in fresh wars on fresh successes. fect might not be so immediate or decisive But it had been, in his opinion, justly as could be wished, in alleviating indivi- stated, that the proposed grant would not dual distress, yet he hoped it would come give effectual relief to the Russians; and, seasonably in aid of the patriotic contribu• knowing the distresses of our own countions now raising by the Russian govern- trymen to be great, and feeling them as ment and nobles, to enable the peasantry he did, he could not assent to taking the and lower classes to resume their occupa. money out of the pockets of the poor of tions, and re-build their habitations, on this country, to waste it in nominal relief the return of the mild season. By this to others. No attempt had been made by grant we should shew that we understood parliament to retrench wasteful and superthe nature of the struggle in which we fluous excess in many of the departments were engaged, and were not insensible to of government ; no hint had been thrown the noble sacrifices which a whole people out, no intention had been expressed, had made, not only of temporary interests, tending that way. While this was the of local attachments, of ancient prejudices, case, he thought it his duty to resist every but almost of existence, to the cause of application to parliament for any extraorcountry and of king. We could not act dinary supplies, in the present exhausted wrong in subsidizing the best feelings of state of the country. It was not possible human nature. In this view, no act of go-to take up a paper; not a day passed, vernment had ever been more beneficial without accounts of distraining for the taxes than the relief which we had afforded to in different places. He did not understand Portugal. Should our troops be driven the principle of that generosity, wbich symback again to the lines of Torres Vedras, pathised only with the distresses of other, the attention and sympathy we then ma- countries, but had no feelings for those of nifested for the sufferings of the Portu- our own. Last year the sufferings of the guese, bad left traces in the hearts of manufacturers in the northern and midthe people, which would make lord Wel- land counties had been laid before parlia. lington's defence light and easy.-His ment with a view to some pecuniary relief lordship concluded by alluding to the being afforded. Those sufferings were of flattering prospects of peace which might a nature to make every feeling heart probably be anticipated from the Rus bleed. But the answer to the application sian successes; of a peace founded on was, that no relief could be be given, connational honour, on national security, sistently with the pressure of the times, and on the public law of Europe ; and with public æconomy. We paid dear a peace, by means of which every man for the prevalence of this sort of foreign might sit down in safety, and repose under sympathy; we had to maintain French


loyalists, Dutch loyalists, American loyal. PetitiON FROM THE CHAMBER or Cowists; but when he had come to the House MERCE Op EDINBURGH, RESPECTING with a proposal of some better provision East India COMPANY's Arpatrs.) A Pe. for the worn-out servants of the public, lition of the chamber of commerce and veteran officers who were pining in po. manufactures of the city of Edinburgb, verty and obscurity, or the disabled was presented and read; setting forth, cripple, whom we daily saw begging about “ That it hath been represented to the our streets, he bad received the same cold petitioners, in their corporale capacity, answer. that the necessary expences of the that in the present limited state of the government were so great as to admit of commerce and manufactures of this no addition,

country, owing to the continental restric. Mr. Wilberforce said, that those gentle. tions laid thereon of late, the trading and men who opposed the grant found it bard manufacturing interests of Great Britain to reconcile their conduct to themselves. and Ireland have suffered greatly; and They could only do it by inventing some that many thousands of workmen emother object of humanity which appeared ployed in our manufactures are reduced to claim the preference, or by denying to a state of poverty and idleness, without that the measure before the House would there being any immediate prospect of operate effectually to the relief of the suf- their being soon restored to their former ferers. He thought, that including the situation; and that, by the act of 33 Geo. 3, cheapness of provisions and the mode of c. 52, the East India Company are vested living in Russia, the sum, moderate as it in the exclusive right of trade and navigawas, would be of considerable immediate lion to all those countries comprehended service; but he conceived the principal between the Cape of Good Hope and the benefit to be expected from it, was, that Straits of Magellan, containing a populain other cases of a similar kind, it would tion of many millions of inhabitants; and be setting an example, and opening a that, although all the rest of his Majesty's channel, into which the charitable and subjects are thus excluded from trading liberal feelings of others would naturally to any of those extensive territories, yet, flow. An hon. gentleman had spoken by the act of 37 Geo. 3, c. 57, the same lightly of the grant, as not likely to ce- is allowed to the subjects of all foreign nament the two countries together. But he tions in amity with his Majesty; and tbat conceived that nothing had a greater in the East India Company are not known to fluence in strengthening political alliances have hitherto traded to many of these ex. than the manifestation of a friendly and tensive countries, their own settlements generous disposition between the people. and China excepted; and that the private He did not see why nations as well as trade to the settlements of the East India individuals might not be both generous Company, under the regulations of the and just.

He had attempted to make year 1793, is laid under so many resome calculation of the share of the ex- straints as tend to deter many people, espence which would fall upon the poor of pecially those who are at present unacthis country, but he had found it impos- quainted with India, and who reside at sible, and had given up the task in de home, from engaging in it, while fospair. He thought that we could only reigners, who pay no part of the heavy testify our gratitude to Providence for our taxes imposed on the subjects of Great exemption from the heavier calamities of Britain and Ireland, are entirely relieved war, by shewing our sense of the suffer from the restraint of these regulations, by ings to which the inhabitants of other which means they are enabled not only countries, united with us in the same canse, successfully to combat the exertions of were unfortunately exposed.

the private traders from this country to Lord Cochrane gave his support to the India under the regulations of 1793, but motion, as the sum to be voted was not also to compete with the East India Comgreater than every ten days expence of pany itself, both in the east, and on the ibe war in the peninsula.

continent of Europe ; and that, were the The motion was then carried without a trade to the countries lying between the division.

Cape of Good Hope and the Straits of
Magellan laid open to the industry, ex-

ertion, and enterprize of the subjects of HOUSE OF COMMONS. Great Britain and Ireland at Jarge, it Monday, December 21.

would afford employment to many thousands of workmen employed in the manu. men employed by the petitioners would be factures of this kingdom, who are at pre- in the highest degree distressing, as they sent reduced to a state of idleness and con- would be found incapable of adapting their sequent poverty; it would create an addi- habits to new modes of business, and contional nursery for seamen, a set of men sequently both themselves and their fawho have, especially of late years, emi- milies would be deprived of the means of nently contributed to sustain the conse- subsistence; and praying the House to quence, perhaps even the political extake the circumstances into consideration, istence of this kingdom, and would, at the and prevent the dreadful consequences same time, prove the means of adding to that must otherwise ensue.” the riches, the revenue, and the national Ordered to lie upon the table. prosperity of the British empire ; and praying the House to take the premises Petition OF JAMES Philip IngLis.) Sir into consideration, and to grant such re- F. Burdett presented a Petition from James lief as to the House may seem necessary, Philip Inglis; setting forth, in a matter of such great national concern; " That the petitioner was appointed, on also to allow the petitioners to be heard, the 31st March 1812, to the command of by themselves or their counsel, at the Bar the government colonial brig Emine, and of the House, in support of the objects of ordered to proceed to New South Wales ; this Petition.”

and that the petitioner had used every ex.

ertion for the equipment of his vessel, and PetitioN FROM THE LONDON Woollen was on the point of sailing to his place of PRESSERS, RESPECTING The East India destination, when, on Thursday the 23d COMPANY'S AFFAIRS.] A Petition of se- of July last, about six in the evening, a veral pressers of London, employed by press galley belonging to the receiving the East India Company, was also pre. ship off the Tower came alongside the sented and read; setting forth,

Emine, commanded by Mr. Peachy, with “ That the affairs of the East India four of his ship's company, to whom he Company are intended shortly to be had given permission to go on shore, but brought before parliament, as signified by the midshipman not being in naval unihis royal highness the Prince Regent in form, the petitioner did not suppose him his Speech from the throne; and the pe- to be a naval officer, although every retitioners bumbly presume to state to the spect was shewn him; Mr. Peachy House, that they, in common with a great demanded a sight of the ship's protection, number of other tradesmen employed by which was instantly complied with, and, them, residing in and near the city of after looking it over, returned it in a most London, derive their support from the disrespectful manner to the petitioner, woollen trade which is there carried on and said it was good for nothing, although by the East India Company ; and that it it was an official document from the lords is by the most strict attention to the va of the Admiralty protecting the crew of rious regulations which have been at dif- the said vessel ; that the petitioner desired ferent times made, and by the petitioners the men to go quietly in the galley, and punctually attended to, that the East In- that he would make immediate application dia Company's exports have secured the for their release; that the petitioner imconfidence with which they are received mediately quitted the deck, supposing the by the consumers in India, and that the men to have proceeded to the Tower, but petitioners being appointed pressers of was informed, whilst below, that part of woollen goods to the East India Company, the ship's company had gone into the jollyhave, in consequence, expended large boat, shoved off to rescue their shipmates, sums of money in forming establishments and returned with them on board; and suitable to those regulations in the dif- that the petitioner begs to state to the ferent departments of the woollen trade House, that on the next day, Mr. Garty, wbich they respectively exercise, all from the Thames Police Office, came on which, in the event of the East India board with a warrant from Mr. Herriot for Company's trade being thrown open, his apprehension; he immediately subwould be the ruin of the petitioners, who mitted himself, and underwent an examiwould have no other means of employing nation before Mr. Herriot the same day, their expensive implements, which would who ordered the petitioner to be combe rendered useless, and to them of no mitted to Clerkenwell Prison; he was value ; and that the situation of the work- then locked up in a place at the Thames (VOL. XXIV.)


« ForrigeFortsett »