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would easily be adjusted ; but if one will not, the other scarcely can. We may concede advantages to others as fast as we please, but we shall do it to our own wrong, unless other countries will meet our concessions with concessions on their part also; we may admit the salted beef, pork, bacon, lumber, and fish of the United States to our West India islands, on the same terms as we admit them from Ireland, and from our own provinces in North America; but it is clear the advantage will be on the part of America, so long as she burdens all our colonial produce and British goods with the enormous duties which are now levied
them. Mr. Huskisson has acknowledged the difficulty of effecting an equitable arrangement with the United States, and has endeavoured to overcome it by allowing the colonies a direct intercourse with the north of Europe, whence he thinks they may procure supplies of lumber, &c. It is much to be wished, that this trade may succeed, but the chances are certainly against it. The expense of staves and lumber is not in the first cost, but in the freight and charges; and these articles being in abundance within a few days' sail of the islands, they never can be carried so cheap, at least to any extent, from a distant part of the world.
Whatever advantage the colonists may in time derive from permission to send their produce direct to foreign markets in Europe, it is manifest, that long established channels of commerce, cannot soon be changed; new acquaintances and new
connexions are to be formed, and more especially must such change require time in the case of West Indian commerce.
A British merchant holding a mortgage on a West Indian estate, has the direction of the produce (it is the greatest temptation to advance money to the planters) and will command it home that he may have the mercantile profits, freight, commission, and insurance; and foreign merchants will be backward to invest their capital in a commerce, over which they have no controul, and of the stability of which there is so little certainty ; for, independent of the chances of war, where is their security that England will not again change her system and resume the monopoly of her colonial trade, if it shall become her interest to do so?
The bill of 1822 allowed produce to be shipped from the colonies direct to the continent of Europe; and the fact, that up to the present year, only one small cargo (which went to Hamburgh) had been shipped from Jamaica to a foreign port in Europe, is pretty conclusive proof how little this new regulation has yet benefited the colonists. In the meantime, however, the Edinburgh Review, which deems hostility to the colonists the very perfection of patriotism and philanthropy, founding on the recent relaxations of the colony monopoly, (which, after all, have not perhaps placed the trade on any more favourable footing for the colonists than it stood upon when they had a free and unfettered intercourse with
the states in North America, previous to the revolution in 1774,) contends that they have now got an undue advantage in their trade with the mother country which they ought to be deprived of. • The colonists were entitled,' says that journal, to demand that they should be exclusively entitled to supply us with colonial products, so long as we forced them to resort exclusively to ‘our markets for what they had to buy. But
now that we have relieved them from these vexa* tious restraints; that we allow them to resort to • all the markets of the world, they have no • longer the shadow of a claim to the monopoly of the British market. It is plain, therefore, that ministers will not be treating both parties impartially and fairly, if they stop where they now are.
Having done so much, they must do more. Ha'ving deprived the merchants of Great Britain of “the monopoly of the colony trade, they are bound • in consistency, and in justice to the people of · Britain, to deprive the colonists of the monopoly of the British market ?' p. 302.
Now what says Mr. Huskisson's bill? Simply this,—that to protect the interest of the mother country, the colonists shall on no terms whatever be permitted to import from foreign countries, the important articles, dried and pickled fish, salted beef, pork, or bacon, whale oil, &c., (which might be purchased in the United States at nearly as many dollars, as they cost pounds sterling in Great Britain) :-—that they shall not
import soap, glass manufactures, &c. from foreign countries, without paying a duty of 20 per cent. on the value ; nor leather manufactures, linen, &c. without paying a duty of 30 per cent. : and, that in order to encourage the industry of our fellow subjects in the British North American provinces, the West India colonists shall pay 5s. of duty on every barrel of flour they import from the United States, or other foreign countries; 21s. of duty on every thousand feet of white pine lumber; 14s. (or upwards of 50 per cent. of the value) on every thousand shingles, and so in proportion for other articles. True, these are concessions to the colonists, and great concessions, considering the galling manner in which their commerce was previously fettered by the monopoly laws ;-considering, that only a few years ago, the island of Jamaica durst not admit a foreign vessel into its ports with a cargo of lumber, even when the planters were actually losing their rum, from the impossibility of procuring white oak staves (the only kind of wood that answers the purpose) to make casks to contain it; when many of them had not a dry corner in their houses to sleep in, from the impossibility of procuring shingles to cover the roofs; nay, even when their people were perishing by famine, in consequence of a succession of hurricanes by which the island was desolated, they durst not admit a foreign ship with food. Matters are now happily improved; it having been found, that we
could not exclude the Americans from a participation in a trade from their own ports ; some salutary relaxations of our system have been agreed to, and ministers having done so much, we are told, they must do more. Well, what more must they do to act impartially and fairly? Must they give British colonial productions the same protection from competition in the markets of the mother country that they give to the productions of the mother country in the colonies? Is this what consistency, and even-handed justice require of them? Very different, indeed, is the opinion of the Edinburgh Reviewers : passing over the circumstance, that the mother country has reserved the right of supplying exclusively some of the more important articles which the colonies stand in need of; and has protected her manufactures by heavy duties on those of foreigners, they would persuade their readers that every thing has now been conceded to the colonists: that every restraint on their commerce has now been removed ; and therefore, say they, let them be deprived of every advantage in the home market ; let the sugars of the Brazils and of Cuba, of Columbia and Louisiana, be admitted on the same terms as theirs, that we may buy the article where we can get it cheapest.
The articles which the mother country furnishes to the colonies are, as already noticed, protected from foreign competition by prohibiting altogether the importation of some, and allowing the im