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fifteen millions. The noble Jord must I must remind you that I have already know that the committee of the House of stated my reasons for thinking it absurd Commons, in 1786, reported that the to speak of fifteen millions as our probapeace establishment, including the sink ble expenditure if the blessings of peace ing fund, would be 15,478,000l. ; and the were restored to us, and the grounds on committee saw no prospect of the affairs which I conceive that the lowest estimate of the country being in such a situation | I can with justice make of our last peace as to get upon this peace establishment establishment is not what the committees till the year 1791, that is, the eighth year fancied it would be, but what it actually after the conclusion of the late war. "But proved to be on an average of five years, when the year 1791 arrived, the noble ! 15,816,0001. In estimating, however, lord knows that another committee of the our future expenditure, we must add the House of Commons declared they did not sum of 200,0001. annually voted for the conceive a possibility of forming a peace sinking fund, and a sum of at least 500,0001. establishment that should cost less than additional peace establishment, which the about sixteen millions annually; and that increased half-pay of the army, and all the instead of foretelling the period, as the various new establishments must render former committee had done, when the absolutely necessary. Your lordships will country could confine its expenditure then perceive, the annual peace expendiwithin so narrow bounds, they did not ture being 17,500,0001., and the annual even pretend to foresee the time when our receipt only 15,500,0001., there will be a expenses could be so far diminished. deficiency of two millions. There is also When the noble lord states fifteen mil. a deficiency in the new taxes of more than lions to you as your probable peace es- 500,000l. ; which, added to the two miltablishment, he knows also, or he ought | lions, makes in all a probable deficiency to know, that the average annual amount of 2,500,0001. This must be provided of our expense from 1786 to 1791, as for, could we suppose that we have alstated in the report of the House of Com- ready borrowed a sufficiency, if peace mons, was 16,816,9851. Yet in the face should be restored in the course of a few of all these facts, the noble lord holds out months, to discharge the necessary exthe prospect of your entering on an im- pense in winding up the concerns of the mediate peace establishment of fifteen war ; but I am afraid there is no reason millions. The papers on your table not to indulge such a hope. I am convinced only prove that the revenue has fallen off that your lordships must, on the contrary, from year to year, but even from quarter think that I mention a suin far inferior to quarter. I must, therefore, submit to to what will in reality be required, when your lordships, that when we perceive I state the probability of ten millions more this gradual and constant diminution, the being found necessary. This will create accurate mode of estimating the produce a farther deficiency of upwards of 600,000). of a future year would be to suppose, that making in all a deficiency to the alarming as the same cause exists, a diminution extent of 3,119,0001. Large as this sum may probably take place in the next year may appear, I wish I could even stop proportionable to that which took place here; but when I know that the expense in the last. Calculated on this principle of the war last year exceeded 31 millions, the total receipt of the old taxes will only and that it is impossible, in a country amount to 12,623,583l.; to which if you where every species of property is so add the share of the 53d week, the va- largely taxed, that money can be exrious sums arising from old duties in- pended without contributing to the revecluded in the new taxes in the statement nue, I must call your attention to the pronow on the table, and the bounties paid bable effect on the revenue of withdrawing to seamen out of the customs, the pro- the war expenditure. I know this idea has bable produce of the revenue, including been attempted to be ridiculed; but till the land and malt, as estimated by the some of your lordships will deign to show committee, will be 15,531,5831.; and the possibility of the smaliest expenditure this, my lords, is the total of what I think taking place in this country without augI can fairly state to the public, indepen- menting the revenue, I must continue to dent of the new taxes, as applicable to believe that a very large sum, even of the the future peace expenditure.

present diminished receipt, arises from In offering to your lordships my con- the expenses occasioned by the war, and jectures concerning our future expenses, that a formidable diminution must take

place when it is withdrawn. Is this all | is impossible ; but I should be sorry intheory and speculation? Or are there deed not to feel satisfied in my own mind not practical proofs of the truth of what that the source of every insinuation I assert? I can hardly suppose the noble of this description must be evident. Can lord selected the year 1783, to compare we really suppose, if the situation of our against the year 1796, rather than the revenue was even more desperate than I year 1781-2, or any of the antecedent have stated to your lordships, that our eneyears of warfare, without examination. mies would from thence conclude our exerHe, I doubt not, had discovered that the tions were likely to be diminished in war? taxes fell, on withdrawing the expendi- No, my lords: the French of all nations ture of the American war, far above a are the last who can think that derangemillion annually; yet the war expenditure ment of finance can impede exertion never then much exceeded twenty mil- against external enemies: they must have lions; at present it considerably exceeds benefited little indeed by the experience thirty millions : the permanent taxes were of their own situation for the last three then little more than ten millions; at pre- years, if they can flatter themselves that sent they are much above fifteen. Should derangement or even the ruin of succesthe revenue now diminish in proportion sive systems of finance can check the exto the excess of the expenditure and the ertions of a country against its enemies. excess of the permanent taxes as there is Whilst I have therefore the happiness to but too much reason to apprehend it will, think that by such investigations I can do no this would create a farther deficiency of injury, I have the satisfaction to feel, that upwards of 2,500,0001. But if it only by laying open the situation of the finanamounted to 1,500,0001., that, together ces of the country I have the prospect of with the sums I have already stated, will doing much good. For if in this age we create a deficiency of no less than have learnt that derangement of finance 4,600,000%; an alarming prospect of the constitutes no impediment to the exersituation of the country, but such as is tions a nation may display against its eneauthorized by reason and supported by mies, we have had awful experience of proof. If, unfortunately, the present ca- the fatal effects attending it on the intelamitous contest be protracted for another rior government of a country. It is to year, it must make a melancholy addition the public, who are in possession of this to this statement: we shall then be under knowledge, I wish, through the statement the necessity of providing for a sum equal I have made, to appeal; for, from the to the war expenditure of the preceding minister I expect nothing. He indeed year, which must occasion a farther addi- has had the direction of the revenue at a tion to the burdens of the people of nearly time when he might have done more honour two millions.

to himself, and entailed more important Though I have felt it my duty, my benefits on his country, than any man lords, to make this statement to your ever had an opportunity of doing. But lordships, yet, in the resolutions I shall who can reflect upon the management submit to this House, I do not mean to of the finances of this nation without repropose to you any thing that can be gretting the infallible evidence of incapadeemed of an hypothetical or speculative city it exhibits-without feeling for the nature. Most of the resolutions only re- ill-placed pusillanimity that prevented cite facts upon which there can be no some of those taxes which the war has difference of opinion. And if these facts rendered necessary from being brought are clear and indisputable, the inferences forward at the commencement of the last drawn in the resolutions are such as your peace-a measure that would have insured lordships cannot with propriety reject. to the country all the benefits it must I am perfectly sensible, that in discussing have derived from adopting those improve the state of our revenue, I subject myself ed plans for liquidating the national debt to much calumny. I know there are submitted to the government by the late those who will assert that such statements Dr. Price. But the timidity that prevencan only serve as an encouragement to ted the imposition of taxes for the beneour enemies, who will consider it as likely ficial purposes of extinguishing the debt, to promote in them an inclination to con- has totally vanished when the mischievous tinue this unfortunate war, or to insist expenses of warfare are to be provided upon unreasonable conditions of peace. for. Annual additions have been made To prevent the calumnies of the malicious to that sinking fund which it was thought formerly impracticable to augment ; leav- . 6. “ That the probable increase of the ing us but too just reason to conclude, peace establishment, at the conclusion of that however the public may look forward the present war, will amount to 500,0001. to it as affording the only probable pros

7. “That the annual peace expenditure, pect of future relief to the people of this calculated on an average of five years, country, from the oppressive taxes to ending 5th January 1791, and including which they are subjected, the government the sum annually applied to the reduction of the country regard it as an engine by of the National Debt, amounted to the which they may with the greater facility sum of 16,816,9841. augment our debt, and consequently in- 8. " That the above-mentioned sums crease our burthens. That it has this of 16,816,984., 500,0001., 200,0001., effect is certain. No man can look at the 600,0001., and 4,423,351l., making togeprice of our funds, at the sums of money ther the sum of 22,540,335l. must be prowhich have been borrowed, and the inter- vided for, as the lowest future peace exest which has been paid for it, without penditure which can be estimated, even being convinced of the operation of the supposing the war to conclude with the sinking fund in this point of view. In present year. wise, in cautious hands, who could be en- 9. “ 'Ihat the total produce of taxes couraged to involve the country in none for the year ending the 5th April 1796, but expenses of absolute necessity, and deducting an occasional payment for the those conducted with frugality, this might stock of wine on hand, amounted to be considered as one of the most advan- | 15,603,2851, tageous circumstances of this financial 10. “ That the estimated produce of system; but it affords a melancholy ob the new taxes imposed in the present sesject of contemplation to perceive, that sion is 1,678,000l. the favourite point of view in which our

11. " That the land and malt taxes are ministers regard it is, the facility it gives calculated by a committee of the House the carrying on with unprecedented pro- of Commons to produce the sum of fusion a contest, which, as it derived its 2,558,0001. origin from their prejudices, owes its 12. “ That calculating the amount of continuation to their pride and obstinacy. the taxes existing previous to the war, to In the hands of a rash and unthinking ar- produce the same on the return of peace, tist, the perfection of the machinery only as they did on an average of four years enables him to do the greater degree of immediately preceding the war, an immischief! and it is that your lordships provement in the present revenue may be and that the public may be convinced of expected to the amount of 757,4801. the extent of the mischief already done 13. “ That the above-mentioned sums of that I recommend to your most serious i 15,603,285l., 1,678,0001., 2,558,0001., and consideration the following resolutions: 757,4801., making together the sum of

1. “ That it appears to this House, that | 20,596,765l., afford the only resources at the amount of the Funded Debt incurred present existing, which can be stated as during the present war is 93,846,0001. applicable to the future peace expendi

2. - That the sum voted for the service ture; and that the sum of 1,943,5701. beof the present year (exclusive of the Civil ing the difference between the future List and interest of the National Debt) peace expenditure, estimated as above at amounts to 33,262,3601.

22,540,335l., and the future peace income, 3. “That the amount of permanent estimated as above at 20,596,765l. will reTaxes imposed during the present war is main to be provided for. 4,423,3511.

14. “ That the sum of 500,0001, is an4. “ That a sum of ten millions, on nually due from the East India Company the conclusion of the war, must be to the public, provided that a certain surraised for the discharge of Arrears and plus profit arises to the said Company, other incumbrances, the interest of which, after discharging the whole of their regu. including the provision to be made by the lar payments; but that no payment on 33 Geo. 3rd, c. 55, will amount to the above account has been received by 600,0001.

the public, since the 1st of April 1794. 5. “ That the sum of 200,000l. is an. 15. “ That a lottery may be estimated nually voted by Parliament to be added to produce a sum of about 250,000l.”. to the fund for the reduction of the Na. The first Resolution being put, lord tional Debt.

Auckland entered into a defence of his [VOL. XXXII.]

[4 E]

speech of the 2nd instant. The Reso- declamations against the inequality of lutions were supported by the earl of law; the hardships which press on some Moira and the marquis of Lansdown, and parts of the community, and the exempopposed by lord Hawkesbury, who moved tions by which others are favoured. the previous question thereon, and also by (Signed) · LAUDERDALE." lord Grenville. The previous question being put, was agreed to without a divi. The King's Speech at the Close of the sion.

Session.] May 19. His Majesty put an

end to the Session with the following Protest against the Legacy Duty Bill.] Speech to both Houses : May 17. The Earl of Lauderdale intro. “ My Lords and Gentlemen ; duced a bill to suspend the operation of “ The public business being now conthe collateral legacy bill until the 1st of cluded, I think it proper to close this sesJanuary next, that their lordships might sion; and, at the same time, to acquaint have an opportunity of preventing that in- you with my intention of giving imme. justice, which must ensue, if the one sort diate directions for calling a new parliaof property was to be taxed, and the land ment. was not. In naming the 1st of January, “ The objects which have engaged your he did not mean by that to say, that the attention during the present session, have bill ought ever to be in force ; he thought been of peculiar importance; and the it the more objectionable of the two, as a measures which you have adopted, have tax on capital was more mischievous than manifested your continued regard to the a tax on landed property ; but he was cer- safety and welfare of my people. tain that ministers must call parliament to- “ 'I'he happiest effects have been expegether long before Christmas, when the rienced from the provisions which you bill might be repealed in toto. He then have made for repressing sedition and moved, that the bill be read a first time. civil tumult, and for restraining the proThis being done, the lord chancellor said, gress of principles subversive of all estathat by the standing orders, a bill, after blished government. it had passed, could not, in the same ses

“ The difficulties arising to my subjects, sion, be either repealed or altered. He from the high price of corn, have formed a should therefore move, that the bill be re- principal object of your deliberation ; and jected; which was agreed to. The Earl your assiduity in investigating that subof Lauderdale then entered the following ject has strongly proved your anxious deProtest on the Journals :

sire to omit nothing which could tend to « Dissentient,

the relief of my people, in a matter of 1. " Because the tax on collateral suc. such general concern. I have the greatcession to personal property is, in its ope- est satisfaction in observing, that the ration, a tax on capital instead of income; pressure of those difficulties is in a great and consequently may impress, at this degree removed. critical period, other nations with the “ Gentlemen of the House of Comidea, that all the regular and legitimate mons; objects of taxation are exhausted in this “ I must in a more particular manner, country.

return you my thanks for the liberal sup2. « Because it is obviously unjust thus plies which you have granted to meet the deeply to tax on succession, the one de- exigencies of the war. While I regret the nomination of property, and wholly to extent of those demands, which the preexempt the other.

sent circumstances necessarily occasion, it 3. “ Because greater inconvenience is a great consolation to me to observe the and injury may arise to individuals from a increasing resources by which the country public exposure of the circumstance and is enabled to support them. These reamount of their personal property, espe- sources are particularly manifested in the cially when the same is employed in com- state of the different branches of the remerce, than can possibly accrue from venue, in the continued and progressive making a like statement of the value of extension of our navigation and comtheir estates.

merce, in the steps which have been 4. “ Because, if there be, as his majes- taken for maintaining and improving the ty's ministers have so frequently asserted, public credit, and in the additional providiscontented spirits in the country, this sion which has been made for the reduce partial impost will arm with a fact their tion of the national debt.

OF THE

OF

“ My Lords and Gentlemen ;

FIRST SESSION “ I shall ever reflect, with heartfelt satisfaction, on the uniform wisdom, temper, and firmness, which have appeared in

EIGHTEENTH PARLIAMENT all your proceedings since I first met you in this place. Called to deliberate on the public affairs of your country, in a period of domestic and foreign tranquillity, you

GREAT BRITAIN. had the happiness of contributing to raise Meeting of the New Parliament.] this kingdom to a state of unexampled September 27, 1796. This being the day prosperity. You were suddenly com- appointed for the meeting of the New pelled to relinquish the full advantages Parliament, the same was opened by of this situation, in order to resist | Commission, and the Commons being the unprovoked aggression of an enemy, sent for to the House of Peers, the Lord whose hostility was directed against all Chancellor signified, that it was his Macivil society, but more particularly jesty's pleasure to defer declaring the against the happy union of order and causes of assembling the Parliament, liberty established in these kingdoms. until the Commons had chosen a Speaker. The nature of the system introduced into He therefore desired them to choose a fit France, afforded to that country, in the person to be their Speaker, and to premidst of its calamities, the means of exer- sent him there for his Majesty's approbation beyond the experience of any former tion on the following day. time. Under the pressure of the new and unprecedented difficulties arising from Mr. Addington chosen Speaker. ] The such a contest, you have shown your Commons being returned to their own selves worthy of all the blessings that you House, inherit. By your councils and conduct Lord Frederick Campbell, addressing the constitution has been preserved invio- | himself to the clerk, said :--Mr. Hatsell; late against the designs of foreign and In obedience to his majesty's commands, domestic enemies; the honour of the and in the exercise of the ancient and British name has been asserted; the rank undoubted right of this House we are now and station which we have hitherto held | assembled for the purpose of electing a fit in Europe has been maintained : and the person to sit in that chair, and to be our decided superiority of our naval power Speaker—that is, to establish order, rehas been established in every quarter of gularity, temper, dispatch, and of course, the world.

effect, in all our proceedings; and this at “ You have omitted no opportunity to a time when the very being of this counprove your just anxiety for the re-estab- try, and the quiet perhaps of all Europe lishment of general peace on secure and depend upou the wisdom and the result of honourable terms; but you have, at the our deliberations. In looking round this same time, rendered it manifest to the House, we see many men of great abilities, world, that, while our enemies shall persist splendid talents, greater abilities than perin dispositions incompatible with that ob haps ever adorned this or any other counject, neither the resources of my kingdom, try. Some there are, who to great abilities nor the spirit of my people, will be want- have added great industry in searching out ing to the support of a just cause, and to the grounds and principles upon which the the defence of all their dearest interests. orders of this House, and the law of par

“ A due sense of this conduct is deeply liament have been so wisely tramed. impressed on my heart. I trust that all Many we know have, and I trust all, in my subjects are animated with the same this parliament will have a jealous eye to sentiments; and that their loyalty and the rights and privileges of this House. public spirit will ensure the continuance In an assembly so constituted, there canof that union and mutual confidence be- not be wanting many persons who might tween me and my parliament, which best fill that chair with credit to themselves promote the true dignity and glory of my and advantage to the public; but in this crown, and the genuine happiness of my hour of difficulty and danger, we have no people."

occasion to resort to conjecture-experiThen the lord chancellor prorogued the ence is a safe unerring guide. Fortunately, parliament to the 5th of July; and on the there is a gentleman returned to this parfollowing day it was dissolved.

liament, who, year after year, in that

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