Billeder på siden


those other Right Honourable Lords, from the stations which they have contaminated by their rapacity, intolerance, and deliberate libations of buman blood. An unbiassed Jury, l trust; will soon prove to the world, that the christian religion, is as great an imposition upon human understanding as that of a Mahomet or Zoroaster at all events they will by their verdict, declare that the opinions of a Deist, have as much right to promulgation, as those of any other dissenters from the established church. Your object in more particularly attacking Deism is, because its principles are apparent to the meanest capacity, and it explains beyond the power of contradic tion, the absurdity of ihe Christian, and the immorality and absurdity of the Jewish religions or rather doctrines.

I will now, my lord, bid you a farewell, though not without expressing a hope that your exertions in favour of military and theological despotism, may meet with the reward they deserve..

1:for those ? line! I am, my Lord, . . ! Your Lordship's most Obedient,



. In our last number we informed our readers that we had it in.contemplation, whether the People would be justifiable jo barriug their doors against the tax-gatherer, and resist. ing all attempts made by him to distrain their properties vi et armis. We have now no hesitation in declaring it to be our opinion that such a step would be both legal and justifiable-legal, because that the laws enforcing the payment of those taxes were in direct opposition to the voices of the People, and nothing is law, but what the People have sanationed—justifiable, because the People are not nor should not be compelled, by any virtuous or moral obligations to surrender their property into the hands of any individual who may be deputed for the purpose of receiving it. As, however, such resistance would be partial, owing to the timid dispositions of many, we will point out one, which if generally adopted, would prove still more conducive to the object in view, and endanger no personal hazard whatsa ever. We would recommend that to be done passively, which, actively, Ministers would declare to be high treason. Let the different Wards of the City of London call meetings

and their example be followed throughout the nation. At those meetings let such Resolutions as the following be entered into, and if subsequently adhered to, we venture to predict the downfall of the present military despotism in less than six months.

có Ist. That it is the unanimous opinion of this Meeting, that the present system of taxation, which paralyzes the exertions of every individual, and robs him of the fair produce of his labour, is illegal and unconstitutional; because, according to our Constitution, the Penple cannot be taxed without having previously given their consent, expressed through the medium of their Representatives ; whereas it appears to us that the present taxes were levied by the Borough-mongers, there being but few Representatives of the People in the Commons House of Parliament,

6 2dly, That it is the duty of every honest man to oppose, as far as in him lies, such taxation; and, therefore,

“ 3dly, We RESOLVE, both collectively and individually, that we will suffer our goods to be distrained rather than pay one farthing of the ensuing taxes.”

We will now proceed to examine the beneficial effects likely to result from such a proceeding. It is the duty of every man to throw every obstacle in the way of the present Ministry, that they may be compelled to resign their hold upon the vitals of the Constitution, ere they voraciously suck forth the last drop of its vivifying principle. If the foregoing Resolutions were generally adopted, there would be no danger that any individual would be deprived of his property, for purchasers could not be found no, not even if Lord Castlereagh and his colleagues were to invest all the money of which they have been for some years plundering the public, in the purchase. Such a step would fully demonstrate to those vultures, 'that the English nation were determined no longer to be imposed upon by the shallow artifices or insolent throats of military execution, and they would resign to make room for abler and worthier men, ere matters proceeded to farther extremities. They cannot go on without money, and to straighten them in that point should be the object of every man's endeavours. Giving up the use of exciseable articles is another very effectual method of obtaining the desired end; but if both were united, success would not only be certain but speedy. We allow the difficulty of doing this in a country where almost every thing pays a heavy duty, but even a partial

abstinence will do much: for instance, the use of wines, .., porkr, tobacco, onull, and all sorts of spices, may be easily

discontinued, and a great reduction thereby be made in the revenue. Tea is a favourite beverage with the poor,, but the tax on that article being £100 per centum, we must set about providing a substitute ; although the continuation of this one article would not be of much consequence, if the rest were abandoned. It is a fact tolerably well ascertained, that many grocers adulterate their coffee with beans burnt and ground. We see no reason why the Reformers should not buy their beans themselves, and burn them for use, ins'&ad of getting them from a grocer and paying the same duly on them as they must do on coffee. Let the Reformers prove that they are willing to sacrifice their sensual enjoyments, by banishing tea and coffee fro:n their houses, with many other exciseable articles, and substituting burnt beans in their room, which though not at first perhaps equally pleasant, yet it is quite as wholesome, and in a few days custom will reconcile it even to the nicest palates. . Thesc are measures which we contend would be attended v th complete success; but yet we would wish every method to be tried, that our catldren may not hereafter reproach us with having tamely surrendered our liberties and the liberties of the rising generation. Blackstone says that " every man has a right to wear arms,” and of course to know how to use them, or the right would be useless. We would, therefore, recommend every man to wear arms, and to leara the use of them. They should also call meetings for the recovery of their rights, and attend them armed, lest milie tary wolves be let loose upon their unoffending wives and children. We have lately seen that Lord Sidmouth takes it on himself to intercept communications from, the People to the Prince, which demonstrates the pecessity of requiring the personal attendance of his Royal Highness to hear your grievances and redress them ;, but as it is not probable that he will condescend to take a walk to the various Public Meetings, for the purpose of hearing the Resolutions, it is fit that you present yourselves before him and rę. quire his attendance to the commands of the people who have delegated to him, an authority which he suffers his ministers to abuse. Such proceedings as these will bring his Royal Highness to his senses, and prove to him that he must surrender his crown or hold it on such terms as the people may require of him. Power is grateful to Kings, and none of them are virtuous enough to resign its most absolute sway, unless compelled to it by the imposing attitude of a people resolved to be free and independent. John would pot willingly have signed the Charter vipaa

[ocr errors]

to higuch proces, and pe ruch ein to Kimost

ness to which proceedily which the people

which our liberties are founded, but that the alternative was the loss of his crown, which bis Barons were sufficiently strong to compel him to resign. As soon, however, as he felt himself strong in turn, he acted as tyrannically as before; thus proving that the wrd of a King is no longer to be depended upon, than while he is in the power of the people. If the people of England, therefore, resolve upon the continuation of a kingly Torm of governmeni, they should in such a manner shackle their Sovereign, as to retain in themselves the power of removing him at any time that he might sanction any attack upon even the most trivial of their liberties. If this power be not in the people, it is in vain to say that they are free ; for if a Prince has sufficient power to maintain himself in the exercise of his authority, in despite of the wishes of the people, he must also have sufficient power to act tyrannically: and experience has proved that human nature is too weak to use with moderation, authority unlimited or uncontrolled. In England, this power of controlling the actions of the person whom they have elected to the throne, or in other words, whom they have placed at the head of the executive department, has long been lost ; how to regain it, and with it their freedom, and the enjoyment of those privileges of which they have been feloniously deprived, is now tbe object of consideration; and we confess, that no means appear to us so effectual as those which we have just pointed out; and which, we hope will shortly be taken advantage of by all true patriots who are willing to devote themselves to the service of their country.


REGENT. Sir, In the second number of this independent publication, I addressed your Royal Highness on the impolicy of your conduct, with reference to your own individual safety, and also on its treasonable character with respect to the best interests of the nation. The unfeeling insult you lavished upon the Deputation from the City of London, has, as I predicted, carried disaffection to your Administration, into the heart of the kingdom, and already the People begin to imagine that more must be done than even to remove Lords Castiereagh, Sidmouth, Liverpool, and Mr. Canning, from their grossly violated situations, where they have been so long gorging themselves with the property of these impon

verished kingdoms. They likewie perceive that a country
can be as well ruled where the President is paid no more
than £5,000, as where £1,000,000 is yearly given to-
wards defraying the expenses of the Civil List. They per-
ceive, Sir, that the excellence of the system does not
increase in a ratio with the money allowed for its expenses,
but on the contrary becomes more corrupt, and therefore as
is natural, they begin to feel a wish to adopt the cheaper
mode, which in the case of America experience has proved
to be also the best. In that memorable answer you told
the Common Council of London, that they were unac-
quainted with the circumstances which preceded the late
Manchester Meeting, and incorrectly informed of thoje.
which attended it; but how, Sir, is your assertion borne
out; certainly not by the facts which have since transpired ;
on the contrary, after an investigation of three days conti-
nurce, and ere one third of the evidence for the prose-
cution is heard by the Court now holding an Inguest on the
death of John Lees, who was murdered upon that fatal day,
the Jury declare that the examination of more witnesses is
unnecessary, for they are perfectly satisfied from the evi-
dence before them, < that there was no riot or tumult;
that the meeting was peaceable; and that the Riot Act was
not read.” Thus, Sir, you have taken it on yourself (frond
the advice of a wicked Cabinet, which contains not a single
individual upon whose word a man of honour could rely)
to offer an open and undisguised insult to the inhabitants of
the metropolis of this empire, and to league with a set of
murderers for the destruction of the rights and liberties of
the People. Can you, Sir, imagine that you will be per-
mitted to proceed in this course ? Can you persuude your-
self that Englishmen will bow the neck and bend the knen
before a throne supported by military despols? Do pot deceivo
yourself. I, Sir, am an individual who never kneit but to
my God, and would rather lay my head upon the block, or
bare my bosom to the dagger's point, than crouch in chains
before the enslaver of a country. My arm should be amongst
the first that should be raised against his life, even though
immediato death were to be the consequence, and when
borne to the scaffold, I would exultingly excluinto Freedom's
Goddess, . *

“ Oh! 'tis sweeter to bleed for an age at thy shrine,

“ Than to sleep but one moment in chains.“ · In one particular you were, I believe, perfectly correct, - .. for the Common Council of the City of London were not :-, then aware of one circumstance which preveded the Meeting

« ForrigeFortsæt »