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widely different, when you are forced to compete with those who do not share with you the common burden of a great taxation, and who are able, by withdrawing their demand, to extinguish that manufacturing industry upon which the prosperity of agriculture mainly depends.

The price of corn, as compared with the other products of capital and labour, is regulated, in the first instance, by principles which it is unnecessary at present to explore; but Mr. Heathfield endeavours to explain the mode in which this relative value is first disturbed by the imposition on any of the productive classes, of a new burden or tax, and ultimately adjusted, so as to divide the burden in equal proportions among all the produc tive classes. The class that is first and immediately burdened seeks relief by a rise of price-this rise is met by a similar advance in the price of other commodities, until the impost comes to be equally shared by all who either produce or consume, and who are subject to the authority by which the tax is imposed. The tax in this manner incorporates itself with the money-price of the commodities on which it falls-the party immediately assessed has raised his prices so as to afford him indemnity against the effects of the tax; but the indemnity is nominal only, not real to the full extent, for he pays his proportion of the tax in the advanced price of the commodities which he purchases, and of which the producers or manufacturers have been seeking their share of the common relief by enhancing the price. But there is a limit to this relief imposed by the conditions of foreign trade-and when that limit is passed, the stagnation which ensues, throws back the impost as a burden on the class upon whom it was primarily imposed, who have no longer the power of removing it, even in part, from their own devoted shoulders.

All public annuitants, whatever be the dignity or usefulness of their functions, from the sovereign himself downward, have, in Mr. Heathfield's opinion, that influence upon price and upon production which has been stated; but there are many classes of them who, as their adequate support and splendour are necessary to the highest objects for which society was instituted, are common of course to all nations, and who do not, by the exactions required for their support, affect commercial intercourse or relative productive power; while there are other classes of annuitants, such as the public creditor and the poor, who, existing in England in numbers, and preferring claims upon the public industry to an extent unparalleled in any other kingdom, have repressed the spring of commercial enterprise, and by creating a revulsion from abroad which

has overwhelmed the artisan, have sapped the very foundations of agriculture, and extinguished the liberal and effective demand by which it was sustained.

"The successive charges," says Mr. Heathfield," in respect of the public annuitant and capable poor, have at length affected the land in far more than the ordinary relative proportion. The maintenance of the clergy is derived, chiefly, direct from the land; the maintenance of the poor is derived, chiefly, direct from the land; and the land contributes freely to the public revenue.

"The whole of these aggregated charges, is evidently not now incorporated in a money price, and the proportion not so incorporated, is not only partial, but entire loss to the cultivator*.

"Until the latter accumulations of the public debt, the increase of the class of public annuitants was followed by an advance in the money prices. The successive advances in money prices have had, even the semblance of prosperity; a rising market, rising in money price, although falling in effective value to the cultivator †, has been favourable to speculation; markets have been "brisk;" each successive year, the farmer, in his returns, has counted more money, and if, working upon a lease, has really, at the expense of the proprietor of the farm, derived a benefit. These are circumstances which have perplexed and misled the country; but it is in the nature of evil to work its own exposure, and it is not now possible to mistake the cha racter of a public debt.

"The incapacity of the cultivator to advance the money prices of agricultural produce, or to maintain sufficient prices to effect the equal distribution of the latter imposition of annuities and the rates for the maintenance of the poor, has for some time past been apparent. Legislative measures have, in consequence, been resorted to at a heavy sacrifice of the principles of public economy, without adequate effect. Further measures, similar in kind, and at a fresh expense of principle, are called for. On either hand distress presents itself: to comply, is to sacrifice the land in the injury to manufacturing industry; to refuse, is to leave the landed proprietor without hope. The crisis displays the effect of artificial contrivances and of resilience from principle, in the most distinct and effective point of view. If it had been possible to have succeeded in finally eluding or counteracting the effects of a departure from first principles, the industry, the enterprise, the constancy, the ingenuity, the skill and the energy of the inhabitants of the British Isles would have been equal to the purpose." Pp. 16-18.

By the words "cultivator" and "grower" as used in this Tract, both landlord and tenant are to be understood. In a national view, the interest is one; the division or distribution of profit or loss, between themselves, does not vary the general question.

+ Falling in effective value to the cultivator, because the increase of the class of annuitants and of the poor, to be supported by the productive classes, of which the landed is the chief class, necessarily leaves less for the support and maintenance of the productive classes. The alteration of money prices may lead to miscalculation, but cannot prevent that final effect.

Mr. Heathfield considers it as no unimportant recommendation of any measure for liquidating the public debt, that the loss sustained under every system of taxation, beyond the amount of the exactions which actually find their way into the public exchequer, would thereby be saved. He recapitulates the objec tions commonly urged to the indirect system of taxation-a sys'stem which political economists, however, have generally concur red in pronouncing to be the best practicable one, when confined within reasonable limits. He estimates the compensation fairly or unfairly exacted by the different classes of dealers in consumable commodities on account of their advance of the tax, at 25 per cent. of its amount; and this compensation he refuses to consider as profit upon capital, by a distinction which appears to us rather more ingenious than sound-viz. that it is not for the employment but the risk of capital that the compensation is exacted and paid. Upon this ground he maintains, that 25 per cent. must be added to his original statement of the amount of relief which the nation is to gain by the operation of his first grand experiment for liquidating the debt; and estimates that taxes paid by the consumers will then cease, to the extent of thirty-six millions.

"The effect of this vast extent of relief," says he "could not fail to be so felt by every description of proprietor, as to render the proposed liquidation of the debt, a measure not only desirable in the highest degree, in which any object of social interest can be desirable, but of great practical facility: for the more distinct view and evidence of which, the several classes of proprietors will be considered, separately, in the order already stated.

"The cultivator of the soil is the first and the last object of legislation, and the distress of the cultivator is the pressing and immediate ground for desiring the liquidation of the public debt: the protection and encouragement of the cultivator, are the commanding reasons for prosecuting that object to the final extinction of the debt. The security of the cultivator is a principal ground upon which national loans are objectionable, and the assurance to the cultivator of a liberal return, is the first object to be proposed in the remission of duties and taxes.

"If, for instance, it be supposed that ten shillings for the bushel of wheat, and rateably for other grain, be necessary to the adequate compensation of the grower, and that the price of wheat be eight shillings only, for the bushel, and rateably for other grain in this case, the earliest measures ought to embrace relief to the cultivator, equal to two shillings in the production of a bushel of wheat, and rateably as to all other grain; that is to say, before the reduction of the price of grain *.

*The illustration is limited to grain, because the insufficiency of price is felt, principally, in respect of grain, but it may be carried further, at the will and according to the information and judgment of the reader.

"The sum to be contributed by the proprietors of the cultivated lands of England and Wales, is estimated at one hundred and twelve millions and a half, or five millions six hundred and twenty-five thousand pounds annually.

"The immediate or early beneficial results, to be anticipated by the landed proprietor, are,

"The conversion of a nominal, into a real rent.

"The great reduction in respect of personal and domestic expendi


"The deprivation of excuse to the employed peasant, for application for parish or public assistance.

"The opportunity of obtaining relief from the burthen of maintain ing the unemployed capable poor.

"Under this view, it is difficult, if not impossible to suppose any case, in which an English estate would be exposed to difficulty, as a consequence of the proposed impost.

"If the proprietor possess the means, either as a public annuitant, or otherwise, without having recourse to his landed property, of paying the principal sum assessed; his estate may be relieved, the coun try be relieved, and an equal amount of the public debt be extinguished for ever, with simplicity and ease.

"If the proprietor do not possess such means, but be limited to the means which his estate, alone, presents for the payment of the sum assessed, or the interest thereon; he will pay the interest on the amount of the assessment, until convenient to pay the principal


"The lands of England are, now, declining in power to yield rent: and if the consideration be limited to the farmer being enabled to pay the present nominal rent; sufficient inducement and facility are presented for the payment by the proprietor, of the interest on the amount of the proposed assessment: and to this consideration are to be added the great reduction in personal and domestic expenditure, and the anticipated reduction in parish rates.

"If an estate be let for £1000 per annum, and be valued at £25,000, or twenty-five years purchase; the principal sum assessed would be £3750, or annually, one hundred and eighty-seven pounds ten shillings.

"In the present state and progress of affairs, what premium would assure the payment of the rent? Is it to be conceived that taking the average of all England, the payment of the rents could be assured at a premium of twenty per cent.? And if paid, and again expended, what proportion is expended in parish rates, and indirectly, through the medium of consumption, to the revenue? These questions cannot be accurately answered; but the advantages to the proprietor are too obvious to admit any question of difficulty in this case. It is not only fair to calculate that the proprietor would be enabled to pay the annual interest on the assessment, but probably, would further, be enabled to reduce and eventually to complete the payment of the

principal sum assessed, by means of annual accumulation, without
altering his scale of living.

"If it be supposed that the estate be under mortgage, the adop
tion of the measure becomes the object of more anxious desire. În
the instance of an estate worth £60,000, under mortgage for
£40,000; the great effect of the incidental relief would be experien-
ced by the mortgager. Upon him, the effect of the earlier deficien-
cies of rent would fall, over him the risk of foreclosure and sale
(through his inability arising from the nonpayment of rent) impends;
the relief in respect of the whole estate, is the relief of the proprie-
tor, and the relief in respect of his personal or individual expendi-
ture, is, also, proper to himself. The price of that great range of
benefit, so long as the mortgage continue, must be borne to the ex-
tent of two-thirds, by the mortgagee. The whole class of property
under mortgage, would therefore, be assisted and relieved in a pecu-
liar and unexpected manner. It is not possible that objection or dif-
ficulty can arise on the part of this description of proprietor.

"And the mortgagee would have sufficient motive for the cheerful
payment of the contribution to be required of him, if he expend the
income of the mortgage within the kingdom, in the great relief which
he would experience in the removal of the general burthens. If the
mortgagee do not expend the income of the mortgage within the king-
dom, or do not expend it any where, the advantage of the measure
must be seen still more forcibly, in the subjection to contribution of a
class of persons, who would, otherwise, receive large advantages under
the social compact, without making any social return*.

"It would of course be necessary that provision should be made in
respect of entailed and settled property, as in the instance of the re-
demption of the land tax.

"The sum to be contributed by the proprietors of the cultivated
lands of Scotland is twenty-two millions and a half, or annually, one
million one hundred and twenty-five thousand pounds.

"By the proprietors of the cultivated lands of Ireland forty-five
millions, or annually, two millions two hundred and fifty thousand
pounds, and excepting relief from the charge of maintaining the
poor, the considerations which have been suggested with reference to
the proprietor of the cultivated lands of England and Wales, apply in
like manner to the proprietor of the cultivated lands of Scotland and

"And the same considerations, excepting as to some points of de-
tail in respect of minerals and timber, apply to the tithes belonging
to the laity, to mines, minerals, canals, tolls, timber and fisheries; the
collective assessment whereon is estimated at thirty-two millions two
hundred and fifty thousand pounds, or annually, one million six hun-
dred and twelve thousand five hundred pounds.

*The mortgagee, might perhaps, attempt to throw the whole of the contribution
upon the proprietor, which if necessary might be guarded against by legislative provi-
sion. See Property Act, 46 Geo. III. c. 65. § 195.

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