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shine, confident, with the most eloquent and greatest of ancient philosophers, that “Beauty is the resplendency of Truth.” After all, if there is any grand quality in this Assembly it is eloquence, the expressing of grand sentiments and sublime ideas in fervent language. I have heard such speeches come from every side of the Assembly and I would like to hear one, in the language of modera. tion, from the government. Discussions carried on in that manner, with eloquence and good judgment, give us hope for the future, for the laws of history do not permit a dic. tatorship to fasten itself upon a people whose faces are lighted by the fires of eloquence--a sure sign of grand apostolic work in social life.
I have said this, not being able to proceed without repelling a calumnious imputation directed against me by the Minister of Government. To a question of Mr. Oria relative to an attack on property, the gentleman replied that it was the work of the Federalists. In what article, in what proclamation, in what programme, in what bulletin, in what periodical, in what speech of a Federalist has the gentleman discovered that we attack property? Against the robbers are the courts and the judges, and it is an imposition on the Assembly and a calumny on our social conditions to charge us with such crimes and to seek to spatter this minority with the mud that bespatters all of you. This is not just.
Now, I must answer with calmness another slanderous imputation. The Minister of Government says that the Federal Republican party desired the dismemberment, the dissolution, the breaking up of this country. A party that aspires to a European confederation, a party that desires to see the abominable word "war" abolished, a party that de
sires to unite disunited people cannot seek the dismember: ment of a country bound together by tradition and law. We desire that from Barcelona to Lisbon, from Irun to Cadiz, there shall be but one flag-a flag, however, under whose folds the citizen may have freedom, the munici. pality autonomy, and the province rights that belong to the whole country.
The accusation of the gentleman reminds me of the one concerning decentralization made by the Moderate party against the Progressive party, and the claim of the Mod. erates that with decentralization national unity was impossible. Notwithstanding this claim, it is generally believed to-day that people who suffer most in their independence have a centralized government, because it is enough to aim a blow at their head, like the blow aimed by the allied powers in Paris in 1815. The belief is general that those nations that have great internal dissensions are centralized nations, because they have an apoplectic head on a weak, stiff body. And so I say that, as centralization is believed in to-day, federation will be to-morrow—a federation the belief in which will result sooner or later in the organization of the United States of Spain within the United States of Europe.
Mr. Sagasta began to defend the dictatorship, and in defending it he drew an awful picture of our social condition, talking of crimes and criminals, and telling you that our education in the past was very bad, and that the corruption of to-day is very great. And what have the Republicans to see from that? For three centuries, yes, more than three centuries, our Church has been as an enemy to the human conscience. For many centuries it has been inimical to the national will. Consequently, if there is anything very bad
or vicious here to-day, it is owing to institutions with which we have nothing to do. And more, this evil, this viciousness, owe their existence to a lack of respect among the people for the law. And this lack of respect for the law is born of the systematic abuse of power by our arbitrary government. Judges nominated by a party and appointed to revise the electoral lists; schools, so-called, for filling convents and military barracks; the jury outlawed; public life closed to the democracy; political corruption extending from above down in all directions—this is the product, and these the products, of the sore and wounded people painted by Mr. Sagasta; people who are the natural offspring of a long heredity of crime and error. It is impossible to cure the people if the system is not changed. . .
Well, deputies, what form of government has come to Spain since the September revolution ? The republican form has come and is still here. It so happens that you have not been able yet to implant monarchical institutions in its place. After having been fifteen days in power you declared yourselves for the monarchy. Did the monarchy come? After the elections you declared yourselves mon. archists and us outlaws. Did you create the monarchy in the primaries? When the Assembly convened, the mon. archy was proposed; there we have had great battles. Has the monarchy been established? The Conservatives, although they have not said so, have, I believe, agreed upon a candidate; the Radicals, more loquacious, have told us theirs; but have you, separated or united, produced a monarchy?
The Conservatives have a candidate who really represents the latest privilege granted the middle classes. Why is it that they do not bring him here? Because they know
that this is a democratic monarchy, based, as it is supposably, on universal suffrage, and because the candidate has not, never had, and never will have, the votes, the indorsement, the backing of the people. And you? You want a monarchy to keep up appearances, a monarchy in order that Europe may say, "See how prudent, how God. fearing, how wise, how intelligent are the Spaniards; they have a disguised republicl" After a provisional government and a provisional regency you want a provisional monarchy also. You do not expect or want to be strong in the right, in liberty, in the will of the people or in national sovereignty. All you want is a king who shall represent the predominance and the egotism of a party. You ought to know that as the candidate of the Conservatives cannot come here without the consent of the people your candidate cannot come without the consent of the Conservatives. Do you believe that your candidate will last if all the Conservative forces do not support him? Notwithstanding all that the Conservatives have declared to their representatives here, not one of them has said that he renounces his dynastic faith. Therefore, deputies, you cannot establish the monarchy.
On Saturday I pictured to you, in colors more or less vivid, the prestige which monarchical institutions have enjoyed in our country, and for this the Minister of State upbraided me without understanding my arguments. I ask you to concentrate your attention for a moment upon the parallel which I am going to present and which may be called a summary of this speech. I said the other afternoon, that to establish monarchical institutions it was necessary to possess monarchical faith and sentiment. One must have the poetry and the traditions of mon.