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way? Without a reduction in our annual expenditure, it would be impostiblc to carry it on long, and a reduction of some millions he thought might be effected without injury to the country. Mr Tierney, taking the same view of the subject, advised an inquiry into the cause of the present state of our resources, to ascertain whether that cause was merely temporary, or likely to be permanent. "The Chancellor of the Exchequer," he said, " seemed to have had a great deal of good luck to help him out in his financial difficulties: in the first year, the loan had been provided by his predecessors; in the second, between 3 and 400,0001. of annuities fell in ; and now a surplus produce of taxes offered, which he was grossly misapplying, when setting them apart to pay the interest of his loan: thus breaking a wisely-established principle, merely by making a fetch at popularity by a shew ot declining new taxes. Was he aware, while he thus declined to look to future difficulties, that he would, in the event of peace, be obliged the next day to find nine or ten millions a-year of new taxes V Mr Perceval replied, that the right honourable gentleman seemed quite sore upon the point of his good luck, as he was pleased to call it,—and indeed the effects of that good luck furnished another obstacle to the wishes of that gentleman and his friends; for it appeared, that, notwithstanding all the drivelling and blundering ascribed to him and his colleagues, the country was thriving under their government, and in a state of prosperity, which their opponents, with all their talents, could notdeny." Replying then to Mr Huskisson's call for economy, he said, "ticre was a diminution this year in the ordnance of 1,500,0001., in. the army of
800,0001.; these were considerable diminutions, though certainly the savings in the public expenditure were not such that any material effect could be expected from them."
When the bill for appropriating the surplus of the consolidated fund was before the house, Mr Tierney returned to the subject, saying, "that such a mea- May 24. sure was at war with the principle of raising as large a turn as possible within the present year. As a man, he would refer the subject to Mr Perceval himself, and should be as much mistaken as ever he was in his life, if he, as a member of parliament, did not say, that the Chancellor of Exchequer ought rather to lay on taxes to the amount of 750,0001. That minister had done nothing; he had completely lived on the last administration ; and now, for thepurpose of delusion, he was evading a tax, which must ultimately come upon the people with aggravated pressure." Upon this Mr Rose replied, "that having drawn up the act himself, under which the consolidated fund was established, he could certainly speak to its spirit and its letter, and denied that Mr Perceval was evading either. In framing that act, the only object which he and Mr Pitt had in view, was to provide that that fund should be sufficient to answer the charges upon it : but those charges being provided for, there was no intention whatever to prevent parliament from applying the surplus in any manner that might be deemed expedient. Mr Pitt would have acted precisely as his successor was now doing, and this he knew from the last conversation which he had with him upon the subject. It had likewise been said, that the measure before the house was in contradiction to a resolution of Lord Sidmouth's. "But," said Mr PercevaL that resolution was, that there should be laid before the house the net amount of the taxes of the three preceding years, and then an average of the surplus of the consolidated fund for the three ensuing; and if an increase was found, that it should be applicable to the burthen of the new loan. Was it maintained, then, that Lord Sidmouth did not wish this surplus to be touched, when in his resolutions he approved of doing so?" Then taking a rapid view of the fluctuation of the S per cents. from the commencement of the anti.jacobin war, before which time they were 96, and during which they sunk to 45J, when, after the income-tax, they begao to rise, he shewed that the present ministry had found them at 60 and a fraction, and had raised them to 72—yet was he supposed to act on a contrary principle to Mr Pitt! "He never," he affirmed, "justified any measure with more confidence than this; and sure he was, that if that illustrious and lamented man were now to stand in the place which he so unworthily filled, he would have availed himself of this very resource." The upon'the bill—Ayes
i were 952,0921. : of the preceding year. on was effected by varenchments; twenty men were ted in every troop of cavalry, it was not necessary that should have horses who were employed at home in recruiting, which was generally the case with two 'roops out of the eight composing a "[fpment. The household troop's and "i were reduced in numi saving was effected
by discontinuing quarter-masters in the several troops, and appointing troop-serjeants in their place. The barrack artificers, originally embodied to complete the works at Gibraltar, were now broken up, that purpose having been effected. A more considerable retrenchment had been made upon the royal waggontrain,five troops out of twelve being disbanded. These, with a few other arrangements in the same spirit, made a saving upon the whole expence of 800,0001., though upon some items there had been a considerable increase. There was about 20,0001. for additional field-officers; an addition of 113,021/. under the head of miscellaneous services, arising principally from a very large sum being required to make up the losses of officers incurred on service in Spain and other quarters, particularly South America a customary act of justice rather than liberality, which has not yet been extended to the navy, where it is even more required. An allowance was also introduced to the regiments at home, as an equivalent for the advantages enjoyed in the navy, by having their wine duty free. Some little increase arose from some improved regulations respecting chaplains. Mr Wilberforce's hint * upon this subject had been attended to. For the future, no person was to be appointed chaplain in the army, unless he could produce proper testimonials of his character and acquirements, and should be approved of by the two archbishops and the bishop of London ; after he had been eight years in the service, he should be entitled to halfpay, at the rate of 5 s. per day, and an addition of 6d. per day should be made for every year of service above eight, till they had arrived at 10s.,— a regulation which would render the situation more comfortable.
• S«e our last year's History, p. S07.
These statements did not pass without some comments from the other side of the house. General Gascoigne observed, " that he had calculated the proposed allowance for wine, which would be about five-and-twenty shillings to each officer per year. Was such a sum worth receiving? The army officers," he said, "laboured under oppressions which ought to be removed; their pay was less than it was in 1695,—not comparatively speaking, but actually shilling for shilling. He did not wish to see memorials from men in arms, but government ought to examine into the complaints of the army. The militia officers were paid in three or in six months, the regular officers were well off if they got their pay within 18. Another cause of complaint was the charge of 4 per cent, duty ad valorem, on all articles of clothing, stores,. &c., shipped by them on foreign service. The bat and forage allowance was the same as in the lfith century, a grievance which Sir John Moore and Lord Wellington had represented, yet no relief had been afforded. Another grievance was the incometax, exacted from British officers, even though serving in the Portuguese army."—These were plain matters of fact, unconnected with
£arty feelings, or political views. iord Levison Gower examined the statement in a different light. "He had trusted," he said, " that the public burthens would in this department have been alleviated to a far greater degree. Why was not the waggon corps wholly abolished ?—for so useless was that establishment, that in foreign service our commanders had been obliged to hire waggons. Why
were the Man x fen cibles con tinued, inefficient and superfluous as they were? Why were the City and the Tower Hamlets militia kept up at a heavy expence, when the whole extent of their service was limited to the villages of Hackney and Edmonton? Why was not the home staff curtailed? There appeared upon that establishment the names of the Duke of Cambridge and Lord Heathfield, T received from 4 to 5000 1. a-y doing nothing. GeneralTarleton* upon the staff of a district, where his command was only four-and-twenty hundred men, and in Scotland there was for 11,000 men, no less than eleven staff generals. Lord G. L. Gower noticed also, as a practice which ought to be corrected, the custom of purchasing horses of two years old for the cavalry, which cost SO < 401. a-year in training, and 1001. when fit for service."
To this Mr Perceval made answer, "that if horses were to be purchased at an age fit for service, a sum must be given proportionably [_ than what they originally cost, perhaps they could not be when wanted. The wan was considered by Lord' as materially serviceable in and the Manx fencibles had t tinued at the express d commander-in-chief, who stated, 1 if they were disbanded, regular tro must be found to do their duty. With regard to the arrears of military pay, arrangements were making to obviate that difficulty, and some provision would also be made to remedy the complaint, that British officers, when out of the country, were subject to the income-tax. As to the staff," he said, "in two or three instances the increase of staff to rank had i the pay, and if General Tarleton 1
been improperly left on the staff, he could assure Lord L. Gower he had Do disposition to let him remain there, on account of any assistance to be derived from him in that house. There was no expectation of reaping benefit from his services in that quarter."
In the course of this debate, it appeared that Mr Canning's removal from office had given birth to a separate party in the house, distinct from the broad-bottomed opposition, and from the reformists, but agreeing with both upon the necessity of retrenchment in our expenditure, while upon questions of general poHct, foreign and domestic, they accorded with the existing government. This had been shewn by Lord L. Gower'5 conduct : it was made more apparent by Mr Huskisson, who dis
military authorities, that in case of an invasion, it would probably take place in a part of the country where cavalry could not act; the admission that it might be impracticable to procure horses for all the cavalry, was in fact a proof that the establishment was too large, for those who were not mounted must be inefficient; he wished, therefore, that they should be reduced to the number in which they could be kept in an efficient state. He saw no necessity for any staff in the Middlesex district, conceiving that the large staff at head.quarters must be amply sufficient for the government of that district." Then adverting to an expression of General Tarleton, who had complained that his appointment to the district which he at present commanded, was like sending him to Siberia, Mr Huskis
Unctly declared, "that he considered sou said, "he thought his majesty's in our military expendi- government ought to relieve that gallant general from such a provocation. Concerning the waggon train, he was fully convinced that they were an annoyance abroad, and useless at home. Some persons," he continued, "may" think that the suggestions which I have thrown out are the result of some political feeling; and others may think that if I entertained these
ture essential, if not indispensible, to the existence of the country. In 1182, the annual taxes were eight millions; in 1792, fifteen; in 1801, thirty; in J SOD, three-score; but there were limits to taxation as well 3i to every thing else; if the present expenditure were continued, our diff.coities must multiply, and the great
est danger to which the country could opinions formerly, I ought to have be exposed, was a failure in its finan- expressed them before. The fact is,
ce*, The best way of counter-act-
that I have always entertained them; but when in office, I considered it my duty to state them only to my superiors, convinced as I am, that the revision and retrenchment which appear to me so desirable, can he beneficially effected by the executive government alone."
Mr Windham said, " the most prominent of the objectionable estimates,
siffcttow, he thought, be dispensed was that of the Manx fencibles ; the
uia, and our security remain undimi- Isle of Man, however barren in other
uihed. It had been declared by high productions, was very fertile in jobs,—
Vol. III. PAKT t. f I
indeed it seemed to be one whole job. our resources, in order that the means Was not that island sufficiently pro- of the country might suffice to the tected by our navy, and by its own end in view, and I would be the first inaccessible coasts, even if the French to adopt any system of effectual ecocould discover any thing in it worth nomy, caring little by whom it should the risk or trouble of an invasion? be brought forward ; not that I can The waggon train was not less ob- ever admit that the expence of an injectionable; one of the first atchieve- dividual family afford any parallel for ments which he had proposed to him- the expenditure of a country. The self, when he held the situation which master of a family may at any time Lord Palmerston now filled, was an confine his expences within his means; attack upon that train ; and if he did but it almost invariably happens in not succeed in destroying it, he flat- the case of a state, that it would be tered himself that he should have utterly impossible to curtail its exovercome it in another onset, if time penditure in a period of emergency, had been given him. A more mate- without endangering its very exist, rial reduction might be made in the ence. Still, in every practicable point, navy; where was the necessity of keep- it is our duty to economize, that ing up so large a force, when our su- we might be prepared to maintain a premacy was greater than at any for- long and protracted warfare; for as mer period? The expence of the lo- no man, even in the event of peace, cal militia was said not to exceed would be bound for the good beha400,0001.; for his own part, he had viour of Buonaparte, it is fair to inno hesitation in asserting, that when fer that a long war we certainly should the committee took into their consi- have."
deration all the expences concomitant Toward the close of the debate upon that establishment, not merely Col. Wardle rose. "He could not," the expences upon parishes, but the he said, "refrain from expressing his continually increasing bounties which just and utter astonishment at finding, were taken out of the pockets of after the very extraordinary coldness the people, the total expence would with which the suggestions he had the amount nearer to two millions than honour of making to the house last one. It has indeed been said, that it session on the subject of retrenchment is necessary to get men into the mili- had been received, thatthe very points tia, that they may volunteer from on which he had then touched, had thence into the line; but in fact this now been taken up by the gentlemen measure can have no other effect upon opposite to him. For this he thank the military establishment of the coun- ed them most kindly, as he was sure try, than the bad one of an enormous the country would also do. The and unnecessary expence. If the committee had now shewn that sort committee were in earnest in its pro- of mind and decided spirit of econofessions of economy, let it begin by my, which would justify the country wholly doing away the local militia; in the expectation that something in it was impossible to get the army the way of retrenchment would be formed upon any rational footing till done :—nothing could givehimgreatthis was done. I have ever," said er pleasure than thus to see his majesMr Windham, " unalterably main- ty's ministers beginning to do that tained the necessity of economizing which was absolutely essential to the ♦ »