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ture or manufactures, all produce infi- interests of the monied classes, and
The slightest consideration of the by low ones; the doctrine is perfectly present constitution of Parliament untrue; or true only, so far as it relates
must shew how enormously and unmerely to fundholders and stockjobbers, justly the monied interest and the and the several classes of society whose
urban consumers have gained by circumstances in life are bettered by rais
the Reform Bill, at the expense of ing the value of money, and lowering the rewards of industry.
the industrious and working classes “ Still, Mr Ricardo's plan was a pro- English members, there are 156 for
throughout the state. Out of 500 found one. sions amongst all who happened to be counties, and 314 for boroughs ; engaged in production, by making a part,
that is, the town members are to and that the most numerous part, believe the county as more than two to that they were consumers, rather than Part, no doubt, of the boproducers; and setting them in this way roughs are swayed by the landlords against those who were sailing actually in their neighbourhood; but, probain the same boat with them, the land- bly, at least as many county memowner and farmer, in order to weaken bers are returned by the growing inthe united influence of the entire body; fuence of city wealth, owing to the was an admirable contrivance for strength- increasing embarrassment of the ening the hands of the fundholder, and country proprietors. At all events, enabling him to obtain his favourite object if it be said that there are 300 Engof low prices." *
lish members in the interest of the During the struggle on the Reform consumers, and 200 in that of the Bill, the great majority of the pro- producers, the fairest allowance is ducers throughout the country, of made for the possible efforts of the whatever class, were seduced by the minority, of all descriptions, who are contagion of democracy and the de- now attempting to stem the ruinous lusion of a Press, all emanating from, torrent which has flooded the Legisand guided by, the interests of town lature. And in the right of voting consumers, to unite against the at elections, how are the different remnant of the Conservative—that classes of society balanced ? A conis, the producing interest. Ninety- sumer in town, who pays ten pounds eight out of the hundred and one of yearly rent, has a vote; a procounty members of England were ducer in the country requires to pay returned in the reforming interest; five times that sum togetone. The tenand the farmers who brought them in pound clause virtually excludes the on the shoulders of the populace, whole operative manufacturers fromany are now rewarded for their exer- influence, and vests unlimited power in tions by the threatened repeal of the spiritdealers, grocers, and shopthe Corn Laws—that is, the reduc- keepers-that is, the consumers who tion of grain to forty shillings a quar- live on the fruits of their labour. ter, and wages to 'ninepence a-day. Thus, both by the places which reAlmost all the manufacturing towns turn members, and the qualification joined the cry, and by their threat to vote, bestowed with such flagrant ening attitude overawed the House inequality on the different classes of of Peers, when that noble body society, is that ruinous supremacy threw itself almost unsupported into secured to the monied classes and the breach to save the whole pro- consumers, which has been at the ducing classes; and they now see root of all the national distresses for the consequences of their conduct the last fifteen years. Now, from in the obstinate adherence to free the tables quoted below, it appears trade, the reciprocity system, the that the total wealth produced by restricted currency, and all the other the agriculturists and manufactumeasures dictated by the exclusive rers, amounts to the enormous sum
• Bernard's View of the Constitution, 312.
of above four hundred millions an- on the subject of the Corn Laws, nually, and the population employed and the efforts they are making to in these branches of industry is no detach the whole urban producers less than 10,000,000, while the total from their rural brethren, by the wealth earned annually by the trading false but specious pretence that dear and monied classes, is L.95,000,000, grain is the interest of the one, and and their numbers are only 5,600,000. cheap grain the interest of the other. Thus a class producing one-fifth of It is therefore of the utmost mothe national income, and composing ment that the working classes of all one-third of the national numbers, descriptions should at length acquire have contrived, by the delusions which just ideas on this subject, and be they have spread among the work- brought to see that their interests are ing bodies, to usurp a preponderating identical, and cannot be separated; influence in the Legislature, and to and that it is the fatal disunion which introduce and perpetuate a series of the town consumers and monied measures, which have precipitated, classes have contrived to create beand are precipitating, the very men tween them by the phantoms of dewhose hands create their income into mocratic ascendency, free trade, beggary and ruin.
cheap prices, and political power, In these observations we have which has enabled the adverse inteclassed the agricultural and urban rest in society to mount upon their producers together, and considered backs, and chain them like captives their joint interests as opposed to to their chariot wheels, in defiance that of the money-holders and con- of the evidence of their own senses, sumers. We know well the apple and the continued suffering experiof discord which the consumers and enced in their own persons. the advocates of cheap prices have Let the operative workmen and contrived to throw between these two manufacturers, before they give ear vast bodies, whose united strength to these insidious attempis on the would be irresistible. We are quite part of their real oppressors, attend aware of the fatal delusion which to the following consideration : they have spread, and are spreading, When were they in a prosperous
The following Table illustrates this in the most striking manner. It is taken from Pebrer's and Moreau's Tables, and all compiled from Parliamentary documents, Annual produce of agriculture in all its branches, L.246,600,000 of mines and minerals,
21,400,000 of fisheries,
3,400,000 of manufactures,
state ? Was it during the war, when all eternity under a just or proper go. prices were high, and, in conse- vernment; or that society has any right quence, a great surplus produce to call upon men in general to be miserwas created throughout the state, able, for the sake of the continuation of a or has it been since the peace, when system. Of this, the productive classes the blessings of cheap produce, of England are now fully convinced, and cheap prices, and low wages, have they are as fully determined that they at been fully experienced? We shall
all events will suffer no longer." give the answer in their own words.
Now this, be it recollected, is the 6. The fundamental cause of the Trades' state to which the operatives have Unions is a want of the necessaries of been brought by the adoption of all subsistence. This is certified by the de
the principles of the democratic plorable statements of Messrs Cobbett, party; by the system of cheap bread, Fielden, and Attwood, in the House of free trade, and the Reform Bill. Commons, with reference to the manufacturing districts, in many parts of
During the last five years of the
war, wheat was at 148.6d. per bushel, which the average income of an indivi.
and all classes, and more especially dual was not sufficient to buy bread alone. Mr Cobbett, in reply to Mr Macauley,
the operatives, were prosperous and
contented; for the last five years stated that he would pledge himself to
wheat has been at an average 8s. a prove that 10,000 persons in Leeds did not get three-pence per day, and he
bushel, and they have been, by their affirmed that his colleague bad a state
own admission, constantly getting
worse and worse. ment, which he could verify on oath, and
wheat which he obtained by his own personal is at 58. 4d. a bushel, lower than it enquiries, that there were 50,000 persons
has been for the last forty years, about Manchester who did not receive each and the workmen, as they ihem24d per day. Mr Fielden's Tables, pub- selves tell us, are so far from thri. lished last year, exhibit the following ving, that they are literally starving facts:
by hundreds of thousands on seven In 1815, wages per piece to hand- shillings a-week. Unless these un
4s. 6d. happy men were literally infatuated In 1824, ditto
2s. 3d. by the monied demagogues who lure In 1831, ditto
Is, 4d. them by democratic flattery to per. Now, add to this appalling fact that dition, they would see that cheap eight millions of pounds were last year prices are immediately followed to collected for Poor's rates, and I think, them by still cheaper wages, and that without entering further into dry statis- just in proportion as the price of tical details, it must be obvious to all grain falls, is the quantity of that but the pampered minions of corruption, grain, which they are able to purthat distress, long, deep, and hopeless dis- chase with their wages, lessened tress, is the cause of the organization of the also. If by a miracle the price of
Trades'Union."— Trades' Union Gazette, grain could be lowered to half-aJan. 25, 1834.
crown a-bushel, its price in Poland, The same fact is stated in the the only result would be, that their same terms in the Newcastle Press, wages would immediately fall to sirDec. 21, 1833.
pence a-day, and the last state of
that man would be worse than the “ The gigantic organization of the
first. Trades' Unions is beginning, and with reason, to attract the attention of the shew for what reason it is that cheap
The sligbtest consideration must country. These unions are only one amongst the many signs of that great prices, whether of manufactured or change which is impending over this agricultural produce, are immekingdom: and which it is now im pog. diately followed by great distress to sible either for human cunning or human
the operatives. The facts, the imcourage to avert. These unions have portant facts alrcady noticed, that sprung out of the long and increasing the produce of agricultural labour pressure upon the laborious classes, whose in Great Britain is L.246,000,000 anmisery has gone on increasing with their nually, and that the home consumpknowledge. The fruit is perfectly natu- tion of manufactures is L.88,000,000 ral. Education will never bring men to annually, while the foreign, even at believe that they can be half starved to this time, is only L.60,000,000, alone
explain it. The agricultural pro- are immediately followed by still ducers are the chief and best custo- higher wages to all classes in genemers of the manufacturers: they ral. Prosperity and credit is immeconsume a half more than all foreign diately diffused through all classes nations put together. Low prices, of society; whereas, under the therefore, which cripple and depress wretched paralysis of low prices, all branches of home purchasers, who the funds for the purchase of the are all more or less dependent on produce of manufactured industry this prodigious flood of two hun- are constantly contracting, the wages dred and forty six millions annually of the operative workman fall to a poured into the state, cripple and greater degree than the grain which diminish, in just a similar degree, he consumes, and he is starving in the home market—that is, the market the midst of nominal plenty. This which is half greater than all foreign doctrine was long ago laid down by markets put together. Suppose our Adam Smith.—“ High prices," says exports of manufactures were to he, “and plenty, is prosperity: low fall from L.60,000,000 annually to prices and depression, are misery.” L.40,000,000, in consequence of To illustrate the ruinous state of some general calamity which had depression to which the operative befallen their purchasers in foreign workmen have been brought by the states; what prodigious misery combined operation of Free Trade, would this spread among our ope- low prices, and democratic princirative workmen; and yet the fall of ples, we have extracted, in the Table agricultural produce from 60s. to below, the prices of labour, &c., 40s. the quarter, would contract the from 1815 to 1832, with the prices home market much more power- of grain, taken from Mr Fielden's fully: it would cut off eighty millions Tables, published by the National annually from the funds destined to Regeneration Society. From them the purchase of domestic manufac- it appears, that since 1815 the price tures. These considerations shew of grain has declined, on an average decisively that in a nation such as Bri- of years, about twenty-five per cent, tain, which rests chiefly on its agri- but that the wages of the operatives cultural produce and manufactures have declined above sixty-six per consumed in the home market, the cent during the sanie period of their prosperity of the operative classes is former amount ;* and that the total mainly dependent on the mainte- returns for “ labour, expenses, and nance of high and remunerating profit,” under the halcyon days of prices to the agriculturists; because cheap bread and free trade in 1832, it is thus, and thus alone, that their is little more than a fourth of what chief customers are provided with it was under the bigh prices of the funds to buy their goods. In such years immediately succeeding the a state, high prices of rude produce war.t
Average price of five years, before 1820, 778. per quarter ; of five years before 1832, 63s. per quarter of wheat. + An Account OF THE Cost, &c. OF ONE PIECE OF THIRD 74s. Calico, from 1815
to 1832 INCLUSIVE,
References to the Columns in the Table. No. 1. Shows the number of lbs. weight of cotton required to make a piece of third
745. calico. 2. The average price of the cotton per pound in each year. 3. The average of cotton required to make one piece in each year. 4. The average price of such calico in the Manchester market. 5. The average sum the manufacturer had for labour, expenses, and profit, in
every year, from 1815 to 1832, both years inclusive. 6. Average price of a quarter of wheat and a quarter of oats in each year, from
It is as clear as mathematical de- utter worthlessness of all the Demonstration, therefore, that the prin- mocratic projects advanced in the ciples by which the Democratic interest of the movied and consubody are governed, have been proved ming classes in towns to ameliorate by experience to be adverse to the the State, has been fully and uniinterests of the producers of com- versally experienced, that Trades' modities; and that the working Unions, with all their attendant starclasses, seduced and blinded by the vation, perils, and anarchy, have flattery of Democratic demagogues, risen up in the land. But are they who all resided in, and were actu- the way to remedy the evil ? Is a ated by, the interests of towns, have complete stoppage of labour on the given a fatal ascendency in the Le- part of sereral hundred thousands, gislature to the very class in the perhaps a million of workmen, a State to whom all their misfortunes way to ameliorate their condition ? have been owing, and whose interests Is, to use their own haughty expresare directly adverse to their own. sions, the "snapping asunder every
link in the chain which binds society The operative workmen feel this; together, by this inert conspiracy of they are aware that they have been the poor against the rich," the way misled, deceived, betrayed; that to augment the resources of their amidst the incessant eulogies of the customers--the rich, without whose Democrats, they have been constant- wealth to buy their commodities all ly getting poorer; amidst a continual their labour must go for nothing ? fall of prices, bave had daily less to Alas! such a convulsion, if it once eat, and that, as Cobbett well ex- becomes general, is calculated to in. presses it, just in proportion as Alict a degree of wide-spread misery education has been thrust into their upon the operatives, compared with heads, their clothes have been slip- which, all they have hitherto expeping from their backs.”
rienced would be regarded as the It is in consequence of the strong, sunshine of prosperity. On this subthe galling, the beartrending sense ject, we cannot do better than quote of their deception,—it is because the the eloquent words of that stanch
7. Wages paid to the hand-loom weaver for weaving one piece of third 74s. calico.
1 2 3
6 Year, Number
Price of Price of Manufactu.
and Wages. per qr.
$. d. $. d. S. d. s. d. . d.
63 8 22 11 1816. 4 do.
6 7 16 0 9 44 76 2 22 6 1817. 4 do. 20 7 2 15 3 8 1
94 0 316 1818. | 4 do 20 7 2 16 0 8 10 83 8 31 6 1819. 4 do. 13 4 10 13 0 92 72 3 27 4 1820. 4 do. 12 4 3 11 6 7 3 65 10 23 6 1821. 4 do. 3 41 10 6
54 5 18 11 1822. 4 do. 87 2 11 10 0 7 1 43 3 17 7 1823. 4 do. 810 2 11 9 6 6 7 51 9 22 3 1824. 4 do. 85 3 0 90 6 0 62 0 24 1 1825. 4 do.
12 4 4 9 9 5 41 66 6 24 11 1826. 4 do. 6 2 5 7 2 4 9 56 11 25 11 1827. 4 do.
2 3 6 5 4. 2 56 9 27 4 1828. 4 do.
2 2 6 3 4 03 | 60 5 22 6 1829. 4 do.
57 3 7 66 3 22 9 1830. 4 do. 6 6 3 3 103
64 3 | 24 5 11831. | 4 do. 55 20 5 9 3 9 66 0 25 4 1832. 4 do. 63 3 5 6 3 21 61 0 24 0