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were also, as far as he could collect, decidedly averse to €t measure. He therefore arose for the purpose os moving a amendment to the /d dress.
The amendment proposed that, leaving out the pledge and assurances contained in the original motion, "the Hous "should assure His Majesty of their concern for the hoflili "ties which still prevail in the remote parts of Europe; tba "they did not understand that the possessions of this king "dom, or its allies, were in any wife threatened; and thai
they fliould not do their duty to their constituents, ll "they were to load them with additional burdens, for the "maintenance of interests which were neither explained nor "understood by that House." Mr. Mr. Lambton, riling for the purpose of seconding the tambton. amendment, remarked, that when the House was called upon to vote an armament, in the course of the preceding year, they voted it unanimously, because they were told that the honour of the nation had been insulted. The honour of a nation was the strongest possible ground for demanding satisfaction by force of arms. It was that without which no nation could exist in safety, nor long in independence. It was the vital principle, on the true tone of which, like the heart, the health of all the other parts of the body politic depended, and with the suspension of which, all their functions were suspended. Whenever it received an injury, a strong and efficacious remedy must be applied; but if this remedy was applied to trivial occasions, if the whole frame was be shaken on every trifling complaint, the remedy must become converted into the disease. Upon the present occasion, he might fairly ask, in what respect was the national honour insulted now? Where was our commerce attacked? Where had the protection of our flag been violated? Why then were we to be exposed to the hazard os a war, with all its concomitants of interrupted trade, and aggravated taxes? It was impossible to denv that the armament which tlie House was called on to support, and the purposes for which it was undertaken^ did not look like war, and might probably lead to it. Were he to give his opinion of the real cause of this measure, he should say it was undertaken to second the views of Prussia. What friends had we in the Baltic to protect? whatadvan-* tages had we to gain? and where were our ships to look sot shelter, in case of a disaster from the force of the enemy, or* what was more to be dreaded, the violence of the elements? He might be told we should possess ourlelve* of Dantzick; but that was an advantage as yet only in prospect. There1 was nothing in the war in which we were going to engage to benefit the country, or to animate the seaman. There was1 no recompense held out for his tcilsj no prize to reward his
harJIbips. The Calmucs and Coflacr were not enemies
«erth his conquest. We had little to expect but bearskins, and is we had expended four millions to obtain catskins fiom \h north- weft of America, we might now add blood to neaIbt to gain bearskins in the north-east of J urope. How •cakl the husbandman and the manufacturer submit to the EniTo'icable increase of taxes for such objects? When the latter, wot king out a hard-earned living by the 1 gh' of hi> tart}w<g candle, was called upon for his increase of taxes, what 3-lirer would the collector be able to give him, were he to alk for what advantage to trade he wa. tl.us additionally bur4iwJ? Of this all was kept in the dark, when nothing but a cVit statement could justify what they were called upon to fepporr. «•
Mr. Martin declared, that since the information, which Mr. imt coulJ enable the House to judge cf its propriety, was Martin, reused, he did not think it becoming to vote for the address. Be had often heard that Ministers were entitled to confidence, beeisse they were responsible for their conduct; but during fourteen years that he had fat in that House, he had never liwwn that responsibility produce any good. Could it be fc*p\ that the supplies for which thev were called on to p'f%e the House, were for the purpose of restoring peace o Etrope, and that the end was likelv to be effected, he should cSarfally vote for the Address, but not otherwise.
Wi.Vyncr expressed his surprise, that as neither our colo- Mr.Vyner r.* appeared to have been attacked, nor our commerce to lute received any detriment, t he House should be called upon terorean armament. He wcild chearful]y vote an address ef thanks to His Majesty for his gracious message, which, he rVmghr, implied, that His Majesty, distrusting the wisdom sfhis Ministers, had applied-to the House for advice, which the House was competent to give, and which they were Ksnd in duty n- : to withhold.
Mr. Steele obse >- ed; that were the anances of the country Mr. Stecle tsaheyond their really flourishing condition, or as low as ixx persons endeavoured to represent them, he should think •"equally incumbent on the House ro avoid unnecessary exXk>-. They w^re now to consider whether the expeiice prow's! was a useless expence, and whet'ier it was necessary for Grsit Britain so to interfere in the present war on the Cont>a?nt, as to prevent the Empress of Russia from obtaining »y oosid<ril»le augmentation of power, at the cost of the TarSuiri 1'irpire. This he conceived to be a question that admitted of no doubt, from the predicament in which we £*xi. with respect to our allies, and our experience of the inV-olition of the Empress towards us. We could not forpt, that when we were engaged in an unequal contest, she
had projected and put herself at the head of an armed neutr lity peculiarly hostile to our interests. This he did not sta vindictively, but as a circumstance to shew what we mig expect from her were her power to be increased in proportii to her inclination to act against us. Gentlemen had 1 right to insinuate that the motives assigned for the addition armament, were not the real motives, till they had tl means, as they had the power, of coming to proof. Wii regard to the message being an application by His Majesty 1 the advice of the House, in distrust of the wisdom of h Ministers, it was ratherextraordinaty, that when the King speech was always considered and always debated as tr speech of the Minister, the King's message should not fa under the same construction. That meffige had not bee sent, nor the measure to which it related brought forwart till every other means of accomplishing the object, which he contended, it was as much for thei interest as for the he nour of the nation to accomplish, had been tried; but ther were gentlemen whose constant practice it was to oppose al the measures of Government; and it was naturally to be ex pected that they would oppose the present. Mr. The honourable Mr. Cocks declared, that he meant not t( Cocki. oppose a rational confidence in Ministers, but that blindfoh and ignorant confidence which the House was now desi red tc confer. He wished to judge favourably of Ministers, am he thought that they had acted well, till the present occasion but he could not think that they had any claim to the extern os confidence whic'i they at present demanded. After. th< cheerful support which they had received in their armament ngainst Spain, to call so suddenly for the support of the House ro another armament, without assigning any intelligible reason for it, or giving the House any information respecting the necessity of it, was neither more nor less than to fay they would call for the last farthing of the public money, and for no other reason but because they chose it. This was not to merit confidence, but to iuvite indignation. They demanded money to support Turkey. They might as well make the Government the Government of Turkey. A procedure of this'kind was not merely running beyond the bounds of justice, but it was adding insult to injury. Mr. Fox. Mr. Fox declared, that no person had perhaps ever shewn a more complete forgetfulness, or disregard of facts, than the honourable gentleman who spoke last but one, in his illiberal charge against him, and the friends with whom he had the honour to act. Had the honourable gentleman intimated merely in general terms that they opposed all the measures of Government, it would have been a gross aspersion; but the House would recollect, and the honourable gentleman
Ssjoi. d not well have forgotten, that this was the third armat within a few years, and he could appeal to every gentlewho heard him, whether he had opposed either of the fasr two, nay, whether he had not given them his cordial feport. "We had armed in 1787, to prevent Holland from ifling, by means of a party, into the hands of France. The neat had been decided before the Parliament met; but when Parliament did meet, had he censured the measure or the ob§B«f it? Had he not frequently gone rather out of his way, Jtttpress his approbation of both? We had armed again, in kcoarse of the preceding year, to obtain satisfaction for an done to British subjects, and for an insult offered to flag. Would the honourable gentleman say, that his friends, had not cordially concurred in the prinoa which that armament was undertaken, although eyhad desired to know whether proper steps had been taken toprevent the necessity of it, and expressed their dissatisfacith the convention to which it led? This was not all; were other objects connected with the armament, on nt of Holland; an alliance with Prussia, and a subsidiary with Hefle Cassel. Had they disapproved of either of ? The honourable gentleman had said that they would k the present measure, because he knew that, after the House had been prevented from inquiring into the grounds "year's armament, on the plea of confidence in Minipending a negociation, and afterwards into the merits convention, on she plea of confidence after the negowas concluded, it could only be approved by those ight proper to repose a blind confidence in Minior were led to approve by the partiality of official conHis surprise at the present measure, if possible, exstaled his disapprobation. When he heard that things were ^seceding to the extremity at which they arrived, he had iotan unbelieving ear, and contended that such folly, such aidness, was impossible. With such measures confidence Sold have nothing to do. Confidence in Ministers was, inked, necessary on many occasions; and for that sort of conideace, whether in office or out, he had always been an advocate; but even that necessary confidence was only a necefevil, and ought, therefore, to be always the least thstt of things wouia anmit. No such confidence as solicited had been asked for in the case of Spain, injury to be redressed, and the insult to be vindicated, •en fairly stated on that occasion; but, on the present, they Rjttfept come at all tm the point. To admit simply, that pljKmg, by the advice of his Ministers, had ordered an arulMtaent, and that the House must pay the expence, was not the gradations of rational confidence; and the House Vol. XXIX. G of of Commons which entertained the proposition betrayed i duty, and insulted its constituents. The right honourafc gentleman who moved the addref, had enveloped himlelf mystery and importance, but explained nothing. His i'pee resembjed the specimen of the paragraph writer in the pi about Russia, Prussia, Turkey, and what not, of which tl person to whom it was shewn pronounced that it was wt done, for it was finely confused, and very alarming. T right honourable gentleman's speech was, indeed, finely co fused, but alarming only in point of expence. When gent! men talked of the balance of power as a reasoning for armin they ought to shew how it was endangered ; when they calli for supplies to prevent the aggrandisement of Russia, new it was to a British House of Commons to hear the greatne of Russia represented as an object of dread, they ought 1 state whom she meant to attack Was it Prussia again whom her arms were to be directed? She had made no a tempt as yet, and if it was known that an attack was med tated, it ought to be fairly laid before the House. Wei the King of Prussia to be attacked, he fliould feel himself r much bound to support him, as if he had himself conclude the defensive treaty; but not one syllable had been uttere concerning the probability of any such attack, and therefoi he must presume that none was apprehended He woul state what the former policy of this country, with respect t Russia, had been, with a view of comparing it with the pre sent. Twenty years ago, when war commenced betwee Russia and the Porte, we aided her in sending a fleet into th Mediterranean, and this support of ours gave her the firl opportunity of appearing Ts a naval power in that pnrtof thi globe, and of obtaining an establishment on the Black Sea It was evident that we felt no jealousy of her aggrandisement at that period. Towards the conclusion of 178?, the Empress having previously complained that her possessions in thi Cubar and the Crimea were not sufficiently secure, took them by a sort of Royal syllogism, entirely into her own hands His Majesty's Ministers, on that occasion, of whom he had the honour to be one, did not think it necelsiry to support Turkey against this assumption. France and Spain were both alarmed, and proposed to this country to join in opposing it. The fame Ministers told them explicitly that thfv would not accede to any measure ot such a nature. They gave up the point, and the Crimea was formally ceded to Russia by treaty. Such had been our former conduct towards Russia. What had it been IntHy? He spoke from a very general opinion, although not from direct authority, 11 saying, that when we renewed our continental connections 1111787, Russia was attacked by the Porte, at the instigation