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ernment; but one man's opinion from his education and position may be worth much more than another's. Should not, then, his vote count for more, say as two to one? This is simply giving place to the just superiority of wisdom. Mr. Mill thinks it wrong to allow property to give this superiority of influence. It should be education and wisdom. He thinks that in this direction lies the true ideal of representative government, and that to work toward it by the best practical contrivances which can be found is the path of real political improvement. Plural voting is the method by which he would equalize the suffrage. Without this qualification by which a superior influence is assigned to education, he thinks universal suffrage an evil too great to be risked, though he would not object to it, if Mr. Hare's scheme for the proportional representation of minorities were adopted. He then goes further, and strongly advocates the giving of the franchise to women. An able paper in the Discussions also presents this topic. He takes the same seat with the most advanced thinkers in this country on the subject.
Chapter IX, is occupied with the question whether there should be two stages of election.. Mr. Mill decides in the negative, and shows that even with us in the double election of President, we practically do not rely upon more than one stage, while in England such a scheme has never been advocated.
The next topic is the mode of voting, whether it shall be secret or public. Mr. Mill is a strong advocate of open voting. He regards the spirit of the voting by ballot as essentially bad. In any political election the voter is under an absolute moral obligation to consider the interest of the public, not his private advantage. In the case of publicity, however, the voter may give his influence practically to some powerful individual, but in the more advanced governments this power of coercion has declined and is declining. Another point discussed is, how much money a candidate shall be allowed to use to carry his election. Mr. Mill agrees with Mr. Hare that the sum of fifty pounds ought to be sufficient. When elections are made less costly a larger variety of candidates may be had. The tendency at the present time is to allow none but those of a certain class to be elected. This is truer of England than of us. Another wrong
view is that the vote for a member of the representative body is a favor to be given to some one, not a duty to be discharged. How long, too, shall the members who are elected serve? When the democratic power is passive, Mr. Mill thinks they should be returned at the chose of three years; when it is the ascendant power they can be returned once in five years. The duration must not be too great to prevent the Parliament from representing the spirit of the people.
Ought pledges to be required from members of Parliament? This question touches the ethics of representative government, but this does not lessen its importance. The principles which Mr. Mill here as elsewhere keeps in view are responsibility to those for whose benefit political power ought to be and always professes to be employed, and therewith to obtain in the greatest measure possible, for the function of government, the benefits of superior intellect. If this second purpose is worth attaining, it is worth the necessary price; and the price must be the liberty of the representative to act at times independently. Yet it is very important that representatives shall reflect the sentiments of their constituents, else a portion of the people will be practically unrepresented. \ If, however, superior and skilled men can be found, they can justly be allowed to do what seems best without special regard for the voters who elected them. Actual pledges should not be required unless there are peculiar reasons for exact representation or for guiding and controlling the representative.
In regard to a Second Chamber, Mr. Mill speaks negatively. He affirms that the character of a representative government is fixed by the constitution of the popular House, and no ascendency of the majority can be tempered by the influence of a Second Chamber. The check must be elsewhere.
The executive in a representative government next occupies our author. As a general rule, every executive function, whether superior or subordinate, should be the appointed duty of some given individual. “Boards are screens,” says Bentham, and in case of bad conduct, the blame can not be fixed upon any one.
But in the multitude of counsellors there is wisdom, and one man seldom alone judges rightly. In most cases the head of a department of the executive government is a mere politician; and he must call professional knowledge to his aid ; he needs the counsels of others; but this should be consultative merely; the ultimate decision should rest individually with the minister himself. This mode of conducting the highest class of administrative business is one of the most successful instances of the adaptation of means to ends which political history has yet to show. It is one of the acquisitions from the experience of the East India Company's rule.
The most important principle of good government in a popular constitution is that no executive functionaries should be appointed by popular election. The entire business of government is skilled employment. Ought the chief of the executive to be an exception in a republican government to the appointment of executive officers by popular suffrage? The question is not free from difficulty. He would not have the head of the executive so completely dependent upon the votes of a representative assembly as the prime minister is in England.
But of all officers of government, those in whose appointment any participation of popular suffrage is the most objectionable are the judicial officers. The author comments upon
the weakness of our own system in this respect. Nor does he believe that the trained members of the public service ought to be turned away, except for positive, proved, and serious misconduct. The danger in making these appointments is very slight from partiality, or private interest. It is also necessary that the examinations should be competitive, and the appointments given to those who are most successful, since this secures the best talent for the service.
One of the most important chapters is that upon local representative bodies. It is but a small portion of the public business of a country which can be well done, or safely attempted, by the central authorities. What the limits of governmental action are has already been partially discussed in the treatise on Liberty, and still further in the Political Economy; but after all limitations there remains a large aggregate of duties which must be shared between the local and central authorities. There are two points to be considered : how the local business itself can be best done; and how its transaction can be made most instrumental to the nourishment of public spirit and the development of intelligence. In this latter work, the local administrative institutions are the chief instruments. They educate the citizens in turn to hold important trusts.
The proper constitution of these bodies presents no difficulty. It follows the central representative system. Community of local interests prescribes the bounds of the different constituencies. There must be but one elective body for all local business, not different bodies for different parts of it. The rural districts can be brought into limits for the same local work. This local representative body also has its executive department. The question now arises, what shall be the duties of these bodies, and whether their authority within the sphere of their duties shall be interfered with by the central government. It is plain, to begin with, that all business purely local must devolve upon the local authorities. And even in the administration of justice, police and jails included, which is so much a universal concern, the local authorities have the advantage of a more accurate administration, though the central authority can pursue a more comprehensive policy. The practical conclusion, then, must be that the principal business of the central authority is to give instruction ; of the local authority to apply it.
Power may be localized, but knowledge, to be most useful, must be centralized. Whatever may be the amount of interference necessary between the two authorities is chiefly a question of detail, which must be adjusted to each case.
The influence of nationality has a large share in determining the shape of a government. Nationality exists among a people who have close common sympathies; and the strongest of these is identity of political antecedents. When the sentiment of nationality exists in any force, there is reason for uniting a people in one government, but a government of free institutions is impossible in a country where there are different nationalities. Difference of language and race opposes a bar to sympathy. Hence, in the main, the boundaries of free institutions must be the same with those of their nationalities. But a proper allowance must be made for geographical exigencies, and for the merging of one nationality in another. When a superior nationality thus absorbs inferior peoples, it confers upon them great advantage, and the smaller nationality usually becomes
reconciled to its position. The most difficult case of blending is when the nationalities are nearly equal in numbers and in the other elements of power.
The chapter on federal representative governments naturally has for us a deep interest. To render a federation advisable, several conditions are necessary.
There should be a sufficient amount of mutual sympathy among the populations. No state should be sufficiently powerful to rely for protection against foreign encroachment on its individual strength. There must not be a very marked inequality of strength among the several contracting states. There are two differeut modes of organizing a federal union. The federal authorities may represent the governments only, and their acts be obligatory upon them alone, or it may have the power of enacting laws binding directly on individual citizens. The one is the German Confederation, the other the American Union. In the latter mode of federation, it is evident that the constitutional limits of the authority of the state and federal governments should be clearly and precisely defined, and that the power to decide between them should be an umpire independent of both. The same tribunal which acts as umpire can also decide disputes between two states, or between a citizen of one and the government of another. The powers of a federation not only extend to peace and war, and all questions pertaining to foreign affairs, but also to arrangements which may be necessary to enable the states to enjoy the full benefits of union. When the conditions exist for the formation of efficient and durable federal unions, the multiplication of such is always a benefit to the world. The question may present itself in partial unions, but whatever degree of coherency they may have, it is always practicable to reconcile minor diversities with the maintenance of unity of government. Identity of central government is compatible with many different degrees of centralization, not only administrative, but legislative. All that is needful is to give a sufficiently large sphere of action to the local anthorities.
The government of dependencies by a free state brings up the question of how much power the parent state should allow her colonies. Mr. Mill believes that the colonies which are ripe for representative government should have it, though it is