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imposed in this country upon exports. This tax at one and three per cent. would, he was sorry to say, produce not more than 17,000l. The next tax he had to propose was upon an article which was well able to bear it, and which ought to be taxed to the utmost extreme, so as not to afford encouragement to the illicit dealer. He meant a tax upon home-made spirits. This article was one that was so destructive to the morals, the industry, and the health of the lower classes of the people in Ireland, that it certainly was a fair object of taxation, as far as could be done without o the private distiller. The tax he should propose upon this article was 9d. a gallon, which he estimated would produce 150,000l. As it, had been always usual to lay a duty on foreign spirits, when a duty was imposed upon home-made spirits, he should propose a duty of 9d. per gallon on foreign spirits, exclusive of the 10 per cent. upon importation, and this he estimated at 30,000l. With respect to the imports, there was one article which he proposed to exempt, and that was tobacco, which had decreased in its importation from 9,000,000 to 7,000,000lbs. Great apprehension was entertäined by the dealers in that article, that an additional duty would be very o to that branch of trade; e had, therefore, not included it in the general increase of duties, but would let it stand over for further consideration. The last article upon which he had to propose an additional duty was malt. Malt was used to a certain degree in distilleries. It was supposed that one half of the grain they used was malted. The burthen would not, however, fall heavily upon the distiller, it would fall principally

upon the brewer. The brewery of Ireland had very much increased since the stoppage of the distillery, when the lower class of people had taken to drinking beer instead of spirits. If, however, the brewer

elt an additional burthen, it would be some satisfaction to know, that the burthen would be but small; for the duty he should propose of ls. a barrel upon malt, would not be more than 9.d. a barrel upon beer. This tax he estimated at 140,000l. The whole of these

additional duties would, "...#

to his calculation, produce 380,000

The interest and charge upon the loan for Ireland and England, would be 148,000l. The interest and charge upon the loan in Ireland would be 65,000l., making together 208,000l. So that the amount of the duties would exceed the interest and charges of the loans by 173,000l. It might be asked why, when he had only 208,000l. to provide for, he should propose taxes to the amount of 380,000l. His answer was this— in looking to the state of the empire, he would take for the next year either of two alternatives, war or peace. If they should have peace, the surplus of duties on the present occasion would afford the means of reducing the duties upon some articles which could not be maintained in time of peace, such as foreign spirits and tobacco, from

the facilities of smuggling; but if,

on the other hand, the war should centinue, those duties would go in aid of those exertions which he was sure the wisdom, the vigour, and the animation of the people of Ireland would lead them to make, after the example which had been shown them by this country. He concluded by moving his resolutious. There was no objection de


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State of Parties after the Commencement of the War.—Earl Fitzwilliam's Motion in the House of Lords for the Censure of Ministers—Colonel Patten's Motion to the same Effect in the House of Commons.—Further

Motion of Earl Fitzwilliam.

N a former chapter we had occasion to notice the growing coldness between the late chancellor of the exchequer and his old, and perhaps natural connexions, who at this period held the seals of office. From the uncordial manner of the two parties in the house of commons, it was conjectured by many, that the pledge of “constant, active, and zealous support” would not remain long unfonseited ; and that the first casual lapse of ministers would bring down upon their heads the thunder of that eloquence, which had been so lately and so loudly exerted in their panegyric. No occasion, however, seemed to present itself. Mr. Pitt had warmly approved of the war; and in all their subsequent conduct there was nothing to arraign. It was necessary, however, to attempt their removal: but the several parties who conducted the attack did not as yet seem to understand each other's views; nor had either the whigs or the tories yet brought their minds to that point, where principle was to be sacrificed to place, and where a

long and rooted hostility was to exhibit the political miracle of a sudden conversion into the tenderest friendship. The attack, therefore, was but awkwardly conducted: nor were the movers of the question in each house such as added much weight to the cause they had undertaken. The political versatility of earl Fitzwilliam repressed the confidence which might otherwise be placed in his assertions; and colonel Patten was a man without influence, and almost without a name. The enterprise was nevertheless resolved on by some of the warmest among the new opposition, and it was ão: to be encouraged, at least as an experiment, by some statesmen of more experience, and of a graver character. On the second of June, earl Fitzwilliam rose to propose a motion relative to the proofs of insolence, aggression, and encroachment displayed by the French government since the conclusion of the treaty, and the responsibility which ministers had incurred in not having, at a much earlier period, laid the evidence of this hostile spirit before both houses of parliament. In bringing forward the motion he meant to submit to their lordship's consideration, he begged it to be understood that he was actuated by no motives of personal hostility to ministers. On the contrary, for many of them, individually, he felt the greatest esteem, and mo man was more rea| to do justice to the respectability of their private characters. But no consideration of this nature should induce him to desert a duty, which he felt he owed to their lordships and the country. It was on public views that he brought forward the business, and on public grounds he should only ask their lordships support. Having stated this in explanation of his object in then rising ...to address the house, his lordship went on take up the consideration of the general subject, and in the course of his observations adverted to all the acts of aggression and aggrandisement on the part of the

rench government from the time the preliminaries of peace were signed, and the corresponding conduct of ministers. On the part of the French government, there had

been many acts of insolence, of vio

lence, and aggression, every one of which o: to have been the

round of serious remonstrance, as É. diametrically opposite to the principles of the treaty which ministers had avowed at the time when the treaty was concluded. When the French government had agreed on preliminary articles of peace, his lordship begged the house to to consider what was the line of conduct which it had pursued. Was this a conduct of a conciliatory nature ? Was it of a nature

that could at all induce a hope that

peace might be preserved in the true spirit of peace? A very contrary spirit had on every occasion been evinced. On this part of his argument his lordship referred to the extraordinary step taken by Bonaparte, of procuring his appointment to the presidentship of the Italian republic : and asked, was an object of this magnitude, taking place during the interval between the signature of the preliminaries and a definitive treaty, a matter of light importance. Was it one to which with reference to such a definitive treaty, no attention ought to have been given by ministers? The fact, however, was, that ministers had made no remonstrances: and it was from the knowledge that they had on this, as well as many other acts of violence and aggression on the part of the French government, not made any remonstrance, that he had felt it his duty to bring the matter under discussion. It was in February 1802 that this very extraordinary measure took place, and it was with the knowledge of this decisive proof of the disposition of the French government that the definitive treaty had been concluded. But what had been the spirit of encroachment displayed by the French government after the treaty was concluded? A very few months elapsed, when by a convention, of the grounds of which ministers had not given parliament and the country the smallest information, Parma and Placentia were ceded to France. It was in the month of June that this new acquisition of territory was obtained, and still no remonstrance was resorted to by ministers. The French governiment, profiting by this spirit of forbearance, and actuated by a thirst of power which acknowledged no bounds, resolved that no opportunity of aggrandisement should be overlooked. In the month of September, Piedmont was declared to be an integral part of the French republic; and thus, whatever hope might have been previously entertained of the restoration of the liberty of Italy, it was now destroyed. It was henceforth left to the mercy of France; for who was ignorant that in every great contest Piedmont had been considered as the key of Italy? The first step which ministers had taken, which at all indicated a determination to resist this ambitious spirit,



was the issuing of orders for re

taining possession of the Cape of Godd Hope. On what circumstances, however, he begged their lordships to consider, were these orders dispatched 2 Was it on receiving intelligence of the determination of Bonaparte to interfere in the affairs of Switzerland It was of importance to observe how the the conduct of ministers on this subject ought to be considered. When they determined to interfere, they ought to have known what effect their interference was likely to produce ; for if, from the circumstances of the continent at the time the remonstrances were made, it appeared that they could be productive of no beneficial consequence, the remonstrances were in themselves highly inexpedient.— Now how did the case stand after it was fairly considered 2 The fact was, that on the 3d of October Mr. Merry sent a dispatch to ministers, informing them of the exerticns made by a Swiss deputy to procure the interference of some of the ministers of the great powers of Europe in behalf of this perse1803.

cuted country. In this dispatch it was stated that the application had been ineffectual. Most of the ministers were not only not disposed to listen to his application, but they were afraid of admitting him within their threshhold, from a dread of iving offence to the first consul. § the knowledge of all this, ministers did interfere when they must have known that interference could not be beneficial. They had passed over the fairest opportunities of dignified and effective remonstrance, and had made a show of remonstrance when it could not with the smallest dignity be employed. But the cases to which he had alluded were not all, which, though forming just ground of complaint, had not been taken up with sufficient spirit by ministers. His lordship, among other things, alluded to the manner in which British subjects had been abused, and British property confiscated, which did not appear to him to be made the ground of sufficient remonstrance. Our claims to reparation and redress had not been urged with that spirit, and that energy, which the extreme importance of the subject required. Having dwelt a good deal on this point, his lordship proceeded to the direct point at which ministers had chosen to make their final stand, and had thought proper to assume a determination no longer to submit to the insults and aggressions of the French government. After all the instances of aggression which had occurred, ter all the proofs which had been iven, of a disposition altogether

inconsistent with the independence

and safety of other states; after the most unequivocal demonstrations of a mind incurably hostile to

- this

this country, ministers had instructed lord Whitworth to express to the French government their readiness to give up Malta agreeably to the conditions of the treaty. Having given such instructions, attention was naturally directed to the circumstances which produced the subsequent determination of ministers to , retain Malta, as a means of additional security against the future views of the French government. Lord Hawkesbury, in consequence of the report of Sebastiani, disclosing the views of the French government, addresses a note to our ambassador, statin that ministers expected that additional security to which their views gave them a fair claim. Till the middle of February, the ambitious designs of the French government were not resisted by ministers; and at length they took their stand at a point which, compared with various other causes of offence, was very secondary in real importance.— From all the considerations he had stated, he conceived himself fully warranted in drawing the inference which he meant to found on his first proposition, that ministers, in full possession of sufficient proofs of the hostile mind of the French overnment, of its uninterrupted insults and aggressions, from the time that the treaty of peace had been signed to the day when his majesty's message of the 8th of March was delivered, were highly censurable in not declaring what was the real situation of the country. At the time that they were sufficiently sensible of the existence of this spirit, they continued to hold out to parliament and to the country the #. of the continuance of peace. At the very moment when there could remain no

reasonable expectation of the maintenance of peace, the public was deceived with the expectation that there was a prospect, not of short, precarious, but of solid and permanent repose from all the miseries attendant on war. Parliament and the public had, at all times, a clear and undoubted right to know, from the servants of the crown, what was the real situation of the country. This information ministers had most assiduously concealed; and while they sheltered themselves behind responsibility, the country was brought into a situation more critical and more dangerous than had ever been paralleled in the records of our country. It was proper, at a time when all ranks would be called upon to contribute great sacrifices sor the public service, that they should have confidence in the talents and knowledge of those by whom these sacrifices were to be applied for the service of the empire. It was necessary, too, when we were engaging in a contest in which the opinion or mediation of other powers might be required, that the character of the government of the country should be such as to command respect. On these principles he wished the conduct of mlnisters to be considered. For the reasons above stated, he could not admit that his majesty’s present servants were qualified to secure confidence with the country at home, or inspire respect among governments abroad. The noble earl concluded his speech, after a few observations to the same effect, with moving several resolutions, of which the two following were the most important:— 1st. “Resolved, that it appears to this house, from the declaration issued by his majesty on the 18th instant,

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