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formed, and (as they term it) organized their « ARMY OF " ENGLAND.” Its Advanced Guard is to be formed from a chosen Corps of Banditti, the most distinguished for Massacre and Plunder. It is to be preceded, as it naturally ought, by the Genius of French Revolutionary Liberty, and it will be welcomed, as they tell us, “ on the " ensanguined Shores of Britain, by the generous Friends u of Parliamentary Reform.” In the interval, however, till these Golden Dreams are realized, it is necessary that this “ Army of England ” should be fed, paid, and clothed. For this purpose, a new and separate Fund is provided (in the same spirit with the rest of their measure) and is to be termed “ The LOAN JF ENGLAND,” to be raised by anticipation on the security and mortgage of all the Lands and Property of this country. This Gasconade, which sounds too extravagant for reality, is nevertheless seriously announced by a Message from the Executive Directory; and we are told that the Merchants of Paris are eagerly offering to advance, on such a security, the money which is to defray the expences of the Expedition.
While the Enemy are thus insulting us with these Menaces, and dividing their Prey beforehand, there are found persons in this Country, who are recommending the only measures which can render such Menaces serious and formidable, instead of being (as they must be otherwise) contemptible and ridiculous. That the Force and Power of this Country ought to enable us to laugh to scorn these insolent Bravadoes, no man who knows our Means and Resources, and who has the Heart of an Englishman, can doubt. But if we imagine this can be accomplished without great and immediate exertion, we deceive ourselves; and we shall purchase a short inter
val of present ease and indolence at the expence of our future security and of our existence.
Nearly six weeks have now elapsed since a Plan has been in discussion, calculated to raise, within the Year, such a portion of the Supplies as may enable us to make this indispensable Effort, without manifest inconvenience and injury to our Public Credit. The necessity of some such measure has (as we have repeatedly observed in the progress of this discussion) never been contested on any rational ground. No other practicable System has to this hour been proposed.
The present Plan is not, nor, indeed, ever has been, pretended to be free from difficulties and objections. But those difficulties have been obviated and lessened, by a perseverance and patience in modifying and adjusting the details, of which there are few examples, even in any measure of regulation in times of leisure and security. We have been minutely discussing in what instance the proportion of the new Assessment, on each particular class, will exceed the proportion of one-fortieth, onetwentieth, or one-tenth of disposeable Income, on the different classes over whom it is distributed, after totally exempting all the poorer Classes of Society. And all this, while an Enemy is almost at our gates, not demanding the Fortieth or the Tenth as a Ransom, not offering to discuss the modification of the TRIBUTE which he requires, but devoting our whole Property to Confiscation, and our Commerce, our Power, our Constitution, and our Independence, to ruin.
In this situation, the Partizans of Opposition, even though driven from all their original pretences, are still endeavouring to maintain a clamour against the measure, because they believe it the only one which can save the
Country. They set out with pretended apprehensions, from the inequality of the Tax, and its severity on particular orders. They saw in it the ruin of the Tradesman, the Mechanic, the Shopkeeper, and various other descriptions. As the discussion has proceeded, it has been proved that many of these objections, even in the original state of the measure, were groundless or exaggerated; but in addition to this, they have had the mortification to see that the special Provisions inserted in the Bill, have afforded distinct relief to almost every description of Persons who were at first apprehensive of its effects; and particularly to the numerous class of the less opulent Housekeepers in populous Towns and in the Metropolis.
Baffled in their original attempt, convinced that they will receive no support from those whose alarms were at first excited by causes very different from theirs, and are therefore now generally subsiding, they have been incautious enough to throw off the Mask. They no longer content themselves with pleading the cause of the Shopkeeper, with objecting to the particular effects of the Tax on this or that description : they express no desire to find or to admit any Substitute to provide for the Public Necessities. But, after declaring that their objections to this measure can be removed by no modification ; after showing us, by this declaration, that they are (as we always knew them to be, and as belongs to the true Jacobin Character) wholly indifferent and insensible to the interest of those whose cause they affect to espouse, they proceed, by a short transition, to open to us the real end and object of their Proceedings.
A Public Meeting, pretending to act on behalf of the Inhabitants of this great Metropolis, and convened on the
subject of the Bill now depending, ends in voting Thanks to Mr. Fox, not merely for his opposition to this particular Bill, but for his declarations in favour of Radical Reform; for the avowal of those principles which have procured him, at the Shakspeare Tavern, the applause of the persons who before suspected him of too much at. tachment to the existing Constitution.
The supposed prevalence of those very principles in this Country, and the hope of seeing our Public Credit exhausted, are (as we have stated) the great incentives to our Enemy to attempt their Project of Invasion. The system, therefore, of those to whom we allude, is clear and consistent; we rejoice that they have spoken so plain; it is sufficient to put the rest of England on its guard :and we hope there will be found few who are either ready to join the Friends of Radical Reform, on what we must conceive to be French Principles; and as few who will not chearfully join in vigorous and manly exertions to disappoint the French Project of overthrowing our Public Credit, as the first step towards subverting our Inde pendence and our Constitution.
“ Tue Auctioneers and Brokers of the Metropolis, have come to an
“'unainimous Resolution not to sell or buy any Goods that may “ be seized for non-payment of the Assessment."-Morning Post, December 25.
This requires but little to be said of it; it is a Lie, and a very foolish one.
"A Ministerial Paper says, that the City of Dublin would be de" clared in a state of Rebellion, were not Government so mild
and merciful."--Morning Post, Dec. 25. What we observe of the preceding Paragraph will serve for this. The trick of fathering their own fabrications on what they call the Ministerial Papers, is so stale and so universally decried, that we wonder the Jacobins theme selves are not ashamed of it.
The Courier of December 26, gives the Paragraph to the true Parent, the Morning Herald - certainly a Government Paper, if a constant hostility to all the measures of Government make it so. To be out-done in veracity by the Courier, sinks the Morning Post almost beneath contempt.
The Morning Post v. The Courier. “ The Assessed Tax Bill will take from the People Seven Millions
“ a year.”—Morning Post, Dec. 25. “ The Assessed Tax Bill will produce but half the Seven Millions
“ it was estimated at.”- Courier, December 25.
To this we shall only say, in the words of FALSTAFF, “ A plague upon it, when Rogues cannot be true to one another.”
" The consequence of the Procession to St. Paul's was, that one “ man returned thanks to the Almighty, and one woman was kicked " TO DEATH."-Morning Post, December 25.
That in a crowd of more than two hundred thousand People, the only accident that happened, should have been a kick received by a poor woman enfeebled with age, and consequently unfit to appear in such a throng, is a subject of wonder.
The Volunteer Corps, by one of whom this woman was innocently hurt, acted with great humanity on the occasion: they had her conveyed to a place of safety,