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the whole of this business, the spirit of fraternity appears to me to have been the governing principle. It might be shameful for any man, above the vulgar, to shew so blind a partiality even to his own country, as Mr. Fox appears, on all occasions, this session, to have shewn to France. Had Mr. Fox been a minister, and proceeded on the principles laid down by him, I believe there is little doubt he would have been considered as the most criminal statesman that ever lived in this country. I do not know why a statesman out of place is not to be judged in the same manner; unless we can excuse him by pleading in his favour a total indifference to principle; and that he would act and think in quite a different way if he were in office. This I will not suppose. One may think better of him; and that in case of his power he might change his mind. But supposing, that, from better or from worse motives, he might change his mind on his acquisition of the favour of the crown, I seriously fear that if the king should to-morrow put power into his hands, and that his good genius would inspire him with maxims very different from those he has promulgated, he would not be able to get the better of the ill temper, and the ill doctrines, he has been the means of exciting and propagating throughout the kingdom. From the very beginning of their inhuman and unprovoked rebellion and tyrannick usurpation, he has covered
the predominant faction of France, and their adherents here, with the most exaggerated panegyricks; neither has he missed a single opportunity of abusing and vilifying those, who, in uniform concurrence with the Duke of Portland's and Lord Fitzwilliam's opinion, have maintained the true grounds of the Revolution settlement in 1688. He lamented all the defeats of the French; he rejoiced in all their victories; even when these victories threatened to overwhelm the continent of Europe, and, by facilitating their means of penetrating into Holland, to bring this most dreadful of all evils with irresistible force to the
very doors, if not into the very heart, of our country. To this hour he always speaks of every thought of overturning the French jacobinism by force, on the part of any power whatsoever, as an attempt unjust and cruel, and which he reprobates with horrour. If any of the French jacobin leaders are spoken of with hatred or scorn, he falls who take that liberty, with all the zeal and warmth with which men of honour defend their particular and bosom friends, when attacked. He always represents their cause as a cause of liberty; and all who oppose it as partisans of despotism. He obstinately continues to consider the great and growing vices, crimes and disorders of that country, as only evils of passage, which are to produce a permanently happy state of order and freedom.
He represents these disorders exactly in the same way, and with the same limitations which are used by one of the two great jacobin factions, I mean that of Petion and Brissot. Like them, he studiously confines his horrour and reprobation only to the massacres of the 2d of September, and passes by those of the 10th of August, as well as the imprisonment and deposition of the king, which were the consequences of that day, as indeed were the massacres themselves to which he confines his censure, though they were not actually perpetrated till early in September. Like that faction, he condemns, not the deposition, or the proposed exile, or perpetual imprisonment, but only the murder of the king. Mr. Sheridan, on every occasion, palliates all the massacres committed in every part of. France, as the effects of a natural indignation at the exorbitances of despotism, and of the dread of the people of returning under that yoke.—He has thus taken occasion to load, not the actors in this wickedness, but the government of a mild, merciful, beneficent and patriotick prince, and his suffering, faithful subjects, with all the crimes of the new anarchical tyranny, under which the one has been murdered, and the others are oppressed. Those continual either praises or palliating apologies of every thing done in France, and those invectives as uniformly vomitted out upon all those who venture to express their disapprobation of such proceedings, coming from a man of Mr. Fox's fame and authority, and one who is considered as the person to whom a great party of the wealthiest men of the kingdom look up, have been the cause why the principle of French fraternity formerly gained the ground which at one time it had obtained in this country. It will infallibly recover itself again, and in ten times a greater degree, if the kind of peace, in the manner which he preaches, ever shall be established with the reigning faction in France.
38. So far as to the French practices with regard to France, and the other powers of Europe, as to their principles and doctrines, with regard to the constitution of states, Mr. Fox studiously, on all occasions, and, indeed, when no occasion calls for it, (as on the debate of the petition for Reform) brings forward and asserts their fundamental and fatal principle, pregnant with every mischief and every crime, namely, that, “ in
every country the people is the legitimate
sovereign;" exactly conformable to the declaration of the French clubs and legislators,—“ La " souveraineté est une, indivisible, inalienable, et “ imprescriptible :-Elle appartient à la nation : " — Aucune section du peuple, ni aucun individu ne peut s'en attribuer l'exercise.”
This confounds, in a manner equally mischievous and stupid, the origin of a government from the people with its continuance in their hands. I
believe that no such doctrine has ever been heard of in any publick act of any government whatsoever, until it was adopted (I think from the writings of Rousseau) by the French assemblies, who have made it the basis of their constitution at home, and of the matter of their apostolate in every country. These and other wild declarations of abstract principle, Mr. Fox says, are in themselves perfectly right and true; though in some cases he allows the French draw absurd consequences from them. But I conceive he is mistaken. The consequences are most logically, though most mischievously, drawn from the premises and principles by that wicked and ungracious faction. The fault is in the foundation.
39. Before society, in a multitude of men, it is obvious, that sovereignty and subjection are ideas which cannot exist. It is the compact on which society is formed that makes both. But to suppose the people, contrary to their compacts, both to give away and retain the same thing, is altogether absurd. It is worse, for it supposes
any strong combination of men a power and right of always dissolving the social union; which power, however, if it exists, renders them again as little sovereigns as subjects, but a mere unconnected multitude. It is not easy to state for what good end, at a time like this, when the foundations of all ancient and prescriptive governments, such as