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Our Reviewer now proceeds to another charge, “resulting out of this tremendous agitation." "For the space of fifteen months the agitation, and its consequences, have been keeping our rulers in a state of utter inefficiency and incapacity for conducting most of the ordinary and much of the most important business of the government." Certainly the Tories are not to blame here. They have wasted no precious hours in the House. How sparing they have constantly been of occupying too much attention in the Committee! How brief Mr. Croker! How laconic Sir Charles Wetherell! There is a modesty in this accusation which is perfectly bewitching. And now our assailant bears down his irrefragable force on the present bill. "Before," cries this merciful sparer of public time, "before we can venture to admit with confidence this (viz. any) degree of amendment, we must wait till the bill shall have passed through that searching investigation which it will receive in the Committee." Typical, then, of that "searching investigation," the Reviewer wastes much breath on the said bill, and asserts it to be equally frightful as, and more democratic than, the last. True! it is more democratic. The story of the Sibyl applies-reject this, and we will make a bold push for the ballot!

But now we have cleared our way to the grand dilemma, on the horns of which our logician thinks triumphantly to toss us. It is certainly very new. "It is this!"-quoth the Reviewer solemnly, (how wise he must have looked when he wrote it down! we can fancy the saturnine sagacity of his countenance,)-" Either the new House of Commons, to be produced by the operation of this bill, will be a more democratic assembly than the present-that is, an assembly in which the voice of the population, considered numerically, will be more potent than it is in the existing parliament, or it will not. If it will not," says the Reviewer, "then is the whole device an imposture and a lie; and as soon as its real nature shall be manifested, the disappointment and rage of those who have been made its dupes, will, in all probability, be vented in some signal retribution on the heads of its contrivers. If, on the other hand, the constituency

to be created by the measure will return a House of Commons, of which, not only will the deliberations be more liable to take their character from the prevailing feelings, prejudices, and passions of the population at large than those of any parliament that ever before sat in England, but of which a great portion of the individual members will be pledged, and in pursuance of such pledges, required to give to those feelings, prejudices, and passions an uncompromising practical effect in every case, and will be supported in so doing by the whole physical array of the populace;-then comes to be considered the great question whether, with such a legislature, it will be practicable, on any principles of which we have the least experience, or on any that are known as intelligible, to conduct this monarchical Government!" Well, having arrived, Deo volente, at the end of this long sentence, let us take breath, and consider this "great question." On any principles of which Tories have the least experience, or on any that are known to them as intelligible, we certainly think-and thank Heaven for it!-it may not be possible to govern this monarchical government; namely, upon the principles of borough jobbing, court favour, and Dukeries-doing as they will with their own. But what does the bill do? It opens a free vent to opinion; it creates a numerous constituency, and it shuts up boroughs without electors; it gives great force to the agricultural interests, great force to the commercial. Are not these two interests capable of judging for themselves? But these 107. householders, you say, are against the monarchical government! Pray, in what popular election do you hear a word against the monarchy? In order for the majority of the country, or, as you call it, the numerical force, to insist against a monarchy, they must first feel fully convinced that that form of government is counter to their interests. Do you mean to tell us, that they will feel so convinced? If so, grant reform, or refuse it, that conviction must be obeyed. On the conviction of the many, all forms of government depend. But have rotten boroughs never been found hostile to a monarchical government? We will tell the reviewer a historical fact:--in the time of

Charles the First, when Thomas Mauleverer, the regicide, was member for that very borough of Boroughbridge, so notably tenanted by his successor, Sir Charles Wetherell it was not the members for counties; it was not the members for large towns, (they had been purged from the House;) no, it was the members for the close boroughs, whom you now think so essential a support to the aristocracy and the Sovereign, who voted the abolition of the House of Lords, and the destruction of the monarchy! In fact, if there be any political truth, it is this there is no moral dependence upon men whom you absolve from political responsibility. They may stem the tide of opinion to-day, but they may accelerate it to-morrow; for, bound by no duty to their constituents, they are, in times of excitement, unavoidably, though perhaps unconsciously, the creatures of self-interest,-vary with its changes, and shift with its caprices.

But we have before had occasion to compliment our philosopher of the Quarterly on that spirit of candour which makes him refute, in one part of his article, the arguments advanced in another: in the same breath with which he is contending for the difficulty with which monarchical government will hereafter be carried on, he admits that "It must surely be impossible for any candid person to shut his eyes to the great difficulty which the King's Government has experienced for some years past in carrying on the current affairs of their administration in any thing like regular harmony with the House of Commons." This is kind in the Reviewer. If, as he justly observes, it has been so difficult, by the present system, to carry on the government with any degree of harmony with the Commons, doubly necessary is it to devise a new system; for surely this ingenious gentleman would not contend, that because it was very difficult to carry on government according to the present system-a difficulty rapidly augmenting-therefore we ought to retain the difficulty, and reject an alteration. "I am," said the sophist, "therefore I must be;"-the government is embarrassed, therefore it must be embarrassed. Admirable logician! In truth, there are three ways of governing a country; by force, by corruption,

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by opinion. The time for the first passed away with James the Second. The country, for a short time, vibrated between the two latter spirits of rule. Walpole, the whig, who practised what Swift, the tory, taughtthe wisdom that is based on a knowledge of the vilest parts of humanity-Walpole fixed the machinery of government upon the art of corruption. This art became a science, and under succeeding ministers flourished with prodigious effect. By degrees our debt began to press upon us; taxation grew heavy; the eyes of politicians became fixed on our financial incumbrances; the smallest economy seemed desirable; the pettiest expense was regarded with jealousy; sinecures were lopped away; jobbing became difficult; corruption was weakened; and with corruption, the power of government. This is the simple state of the case. Government must be strengthened. Will the nation bear to see it strengthened by force? Will it vote the administration a standing army; or, denying this, will it recur to corruption, and recruit the spectre to its former plumpness? Will it submit new places, new sinecures, new pensions, new grants to the disposal of government, in order to influence, ad libitum, the members of the Lower House? Does any man expect this? No man! We must try, then, a new experiment. We must try to strengthen the government by the force of opinion! The reason why governments of late have been so weakly and so short-lived is, that while, on the one hand, the power of influencing supporters by corruption was daily decreasing, they made, on the other, no appeal to the support of opinion. Upon that great and virtuous source of power-after seeing their predecessors recede from it to the last houran English administration is irresistibly thrown. We can readily believe, with the Reviewer, that the principles of government it affords are not those of which former administrations have the least experience, or any that are known to them as intelligible!

Our Reviewer is an all-accomplished gentleman, wit, punster, legislator, and prophet. He now proceeds to foretell the component parts of the Reformed House of Commons. So modest a gentleman feels the greatest


pain to think "that the new members (wholly unlike any of the old ones) are to be men of a confident and plausible address, a noisy and turbulent generation of glib talkers and shallow thinkers!" "Nor let any man,' cries the Reviewer, "flatter himself that this is a dream! It is a fearful reality!"—a fearful reality indeed it must be!-for then we shall have all the Tories back again !— or, No-if it requires "a confident address" to be member of a Reformed Parliament, Mr. Croker will certainly have no chance-if "a plausible" address, Sir Robert Peel is lost to us for ever-if on the benches of the House of Commons we are to see a noisy and turbulent generation of glib talkers and shallow thinkers, what! oh, what! will become of the present, quiet, retiring, silent, ruminating minority? "But," proceeds our Reviewer, "it is a fearful reality! We have only to look around us, and we may see the stage already prepared, and each performer rehearsing his part!"-it is true; it is indeed a fearful reality! While we write, in all probability, the Recorder of Bristol is on that stage, or Mr. Croker, rehearsing those graces of action, which would have rendered him the darling of Sadler's Wells.

Our reviewer then, turning from the prophetic, avails himself of the poetical character, and wafts us from Thebes to Athens-from England to Rome, to France, and to America-in order to show that the numerical force are averse to-property?-No! to the present distribution of property! What man is not?-all financial reform, all political economy, all sound philosophies concur in telling us that our present distresses arise from our imperfect knowledge of the distribution of property-to the place of the sore must be ultimately applied the remedy. Returning then to the Reform Bill, and criticising Lord Brougham's speech, which our Reviewer, who, as we have seen, is a great hand at irony, facetiously tells us Mr. Escott has entirely destroyed, “in his masterly pamphlet," (the most arrogant piece of coxcombical ignorance, by the way, that ever was penned,) this guardian of the Constitution, this supporter of morality, this oracle of the high-churchmen, this Tartuffe of Toryism, proceeds to tell us, that jobbing and corruption are

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