Gazette of the United-States. (New-York [N.Y.]) 1789-1793, May 20, 1789, Image 1

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    No. XI.
« There itfcarce any thing more common, than ani
mnjjtu! among parties, that cannot fubjlfl, butty
their agreement."
COME persons, who read my last number, com-
J plain that a few of the strokes were drawn
o hard. Part of the image is said to be too
bold ' and the picture, in some refpe<fts, is railed
bevond the life. If it is meant as a portrait,
where (hall we look for an exact original? If
it is a fancy piece ; why is the figure allowed to
exhibit, what fadts will contradidt i
It mud be confefled, and it is an happy circum
stance, that in the present age, the evils of fac
tion have not run their full length. They have
been controuled by several causes j but they are
capable, when unchecked, of reaching all the
extremes I have described. The present state
offociety, in America,and some parts of Europe,
is unfavorable to the success of head-strong, tur
bulent incendiaries. A few individuals, how
much soever disposed, cannot eafdy blow up a
flame, that will spread over any large district of
country. Most people are so intent upon their
occupations, and so desirous of purluing private
objects in life, that they are averse to disorder
and contention. The mild influences of com
merce have dilfufed a spirit of moderation and
order. As the love of gain is new a very pre
dominant palfion, and as that is befl: gratified in
parific times, it operates as a strong guard a
gainst reft lei's, clamorous men, who a.*e ambi
tious of kindling : actions. This love of money
isnot confined to tlie mercantile profefiion alane.
All denominations of men are more or less under
its influence. Thoie, who are aiming at theac
quifition of property by the regular itepe of ho
ned industry, will only be feeble inllruments in
party rage and aniraofity. There £.re not want
ing characters, at the present day, to throw so
ciety into cont'ufion and quarrels ; but they do not
easily find materials. The great bulk of ma.ll
- are otherwise employed.
Among the individuals, I have observed, who
Jh;id a contentioussspirt,it, no one has combined all
die qualifications, or acconi]Jifbed so extensively
his designs, as Jeaders of parties used to do, in a
more iuipcrfccft aud outrageous state of society.
People iii general, though they may he indivi
dually unconnected, are yet so relatively fitua
ted with refpedt to each other, that an injury
done to any particular jclali of the community,
impedes tie profp.erity of jche reft. The diflen
lions between the landed,- mercantile and manu
facturing iuterelts can never proceed to any de
trimental lengths ; because each party will itftli
feel the evil it is levelling against the other, be
fore it can be pushed to any injurious extreme.
The whole system is so complicated that it mull
Hand or fall together. Dilputcs, between the
different orders of society, are as unnatural, as
thefcditivn between the members of the human
body, wliicii the old Roman fafcde so aptly xepre
fents. -■
In proportion, as the relative interests of men
are examined, will it be found that mutual har
mony aiid prosperity ihould be promoted. Indeec
tbey will iu ,I'orae jueafure promote and regulate
theavfelves. Some jealousy and jarring are fai
from producing a bad effect. The spirit of com
petition is indifpenfible.—ln fame cafe? it uiaj
bear two hard upon cert:-in individuals, and ever
one branch of the community may get an undui
advantage over, others ; but in a general way
the system will take care of itfelf.
The subjeCt is not yet finifned, though I intend
ed dais number should have closed it.
' 1 . .V - u T- - ■ . i .
A LETTER on the Public and Private DEBT o.
AMERICA—The means of facilitating the pay
ment thereof—and converting it into a fourc<
of WEALTH and PROSPERITY for the Uni
ted Stat«».
By Sir John Dalrymple, Bait.
THE Americans owe at present four millions
Serling of debts to British fiibje<Sts ; various plans
have been proposed to effectuate payment —they
all fail in this refpeift, that they suggest no pro
v»»on for putting the Americans in a capacity to
Pay- The chief use of hiitory is to shew men
"what they nr-e to foliotv xmd what to avoid, by
«3vperic«ce of their anceilors, and therefore
übniir the following plan, founded on Mr. Mon
tague's* principles, to the conlideratipii of both
c ountrks. Auieiica js now in a Jiinilar firaation
TV, M note.
e r - Montague,here alluded to,wasChancellor to U»e Exche-
er ' • *€96, «.nd who, with the -nffiftance of Sir Isaac New
fund c^e » e ft'bli(hed the present system of the Britifli
From S A TU R D AY, May 16, to W E D NES D A Y, Mat 20, 1789.
with that of England, during the firft year of
King William's reign, in four refpedts.
lit. She owes an external debt of four millions
to Britifti fubje<fts, in the fame way England
owed five millions to her soldiers and seamen who
were mostly abroad.
2dly. She owes an internal public debt, con
tracted during the war ; England owed a similar
debt, but with this difference, that the Ameri
can debt is small in comparison of what the En
glish debt was.
3dly. America requires annual supplies of tax
es to carry on her government: England requi
red them also ; but with this difference, that the
supplies required by America, atprefent, to car
ry 011 her government, are a trifle, whereas the
deunands of England were great, because there
was a great war to maintain.
Lastly, America has but little coin ; England
at that time had not much, and yet had vast de
mands upon her for to carry on her commerce,
to pay the interest of her debts, to maintain an
expensive civil goTernment, about forty thou
fluid seamen. and-about eighty thousand troops,
and to fu'pfidize foreign Princes. The supposed
di'UoniJ of Americans to their British credi
tors, or rather perhaps their real inability to do
what they wish to do,arif'es from their want of coin,
ur of a substitute tor coin ; for,to expedt them to pay
:i great external and internal debt, and carry on
their government without coin, or a substitute
for coin, that is, to pay without an instrument
of payment, isonevifion; and to expedt Ame
rica with her poverty, to pay the principal sum
of her external and internal debt, when England,
Krauce, and Holland, with all their wealth,
rannot, .i ; . another vision. Kut if the American
States, (with or without the intervention of Bri
tish coinmi/lioiiers, to attend to the interest of
Britiih creditors in the liquidation of their debts)
will apply Mr. Montague's principles and prac
tice to the present condition of their country,
they will find the remedy for the evil, even in
the evil id elf, for the bene at of the Britiih cre
ditors ; and they will fiml. certain good to spring
out of that remedy, for the benefit of America
hsrjfeif. "
Lef-tfee- American States, iu the firft place,
provide a fund of taxes, futficient to pay more
than the interefjt of i heir internal and external
debts, and-fuflicient ajfo to pay either the funis
annually required to carry on their government,
or the interest of a sum borrowed ior carrying
it on, if they have no taxes fufficient to raise an
annual ftipply for that purpose ; but which bor
rowing wjll not be neceflajy, except for a few
years at the beginning, till public credit iball be
eftaLlifhed ; because, after that period, it will
be the fault of America herfelf, if flic does not
pay off debts, inftcad of encreafing them. The
States fliould, in the second place, convert the
above debts, (whether internal or external, or
new borrowings, to carry on for a few years their
government) into public transferable fecuriiies,
and make provision for the exadt application ol
those taxes to Lhe payment of the interest of the
debts, in the fame way that Mr. Montague did.
Lastly. In Older to give currency to tfiefe trans
ferable securities (or, to give them a more sim
ple name, to this paper money,) it should be
received in payment of taxes to the State, and
of borrowings by the State, in the fame way as
was provided for by Mr. Montague.
Oijedion. It raay be objected, that it is unjust
to make the American public pay the debts of
American private persons; that the American
public will be a lefer by the bargain, and there
fore will never agree to it.
Aruiutr. Public bodies, like private persons,
fubruit to hardships, when they are to receive be
nefits from them. The States will agree, if any
way can be fallen upon to make the public a gain
er in the end, and to faveit from lols in the mean
time. Now the way to compais the firft of theft
ends, is, ift, for the American States, in return
for the transferable securities which they give
for the payment of the interest of the debts of
the British creditors, to be put iu the place of
thole creditors, so as to enable the States to reco
ver the debts in America; and 2clly, that these
debts, as fait as recovered, shall be converted
into a fund, to make a solid bottom for a bank
of circulation, like that of England, to be the
property of the American public : and which
hank will gradually extend itfelf, accom
modation of public and private credit, as they
shall extend tliemfelves, because the debts reco
vered will be gradually falling into it.
With regard to ways of faviug the public of
America from loss, or at least from a cOnliderablt
loss, there are many. Some of the debts could
be called in inltantly. Securities for the pay
ment of the interest annually, and of the princi-
pal by instalment, might be taken on the real
eltates of others, or upon the persona! eltates of
them and their friends, when they had no real
eltates. 1 o ease the debtors, and yet to five
benefit to the public, payment of many of tlie
debts might be taken in the produce of the coun
try; for example, in the tobacco ofChelapeake
bay, and the rice of the Caroiinas ; and these
fold to foreign nations, with the II amp of thy
public upon them, to vouch the goodnels of their
quality, would acquire an additional value In
order toobtain the end of ealing the debtor, ana
|ettingbenefit to the slate Hill farther, that pro
duce might be exported upon a premium by the
State, to refpeAable bodies of merchants |in Bri
tain, to be received for the behoof of the B ritifc
proprietors in the American funds. This last is
not difficult to be executed. All the tobacco re
ceived in t ranee and Spain, is consigned to a few
hands ; and the diamonds of the Brazils "o to
one lioufe in Lisbon. But above all, England
might give advantage to American trade, with
out hurting her own, to make up the public loss,
and reward the public honor of America : these
ire arrangements, which could be contrived in.
half a day, by one who has ihewn that he can.
ronducft the lightening of the Ikies, and who, by
contriving these arrangements, would crown the
Tood lie has done to his own, and make up for
lie mifchief he has done to this country. Such
nutual concessions would tend to reconcile the
tumours of men to each other, whose intereib
n spite oftliofe humours mult long be the fame.
The advantages which would redound to Ajneri
:a from adopting fucli views, are the following:
lit. Her empire of dominion, and her empire
)f commerce (for they mult be blind indeed,
*ho <io not fee how immense this lafb empire mu(k
>e, if honor be made its basis) will start froiu
he noblelt of all goals, the goal of public ho
lor, and of national fidelity of charatfler; cir
:umftances which support the public credit of
England, and the private credit of the Spanifli
ration, more than any other. At present the
hips of all countries stand aloof from the coasts
>f America, but they would then press forward
,o reach them. He mail be a bad merchant, ia-
Ifed, who does not fee, that a little character is
vorth a little money.
2dly. America would be fupp}ied with an im
nediate fubftitufe for her want: of coin, juil as
Was by Mr. Montague's scheme, and
his relief, by the vigour which it always gives
:o and trade, would supply America
with coin, just as coin was drawn into England
>y Mr. Montague's scheme. No bank can Hand
without an equivalent security within itfelf, for
he notes it iflues. The debts recovered
ind sent to the bank, would form that security ;
md then the bank, either established at one Ita
ion, or, which would be much better, divided
.nto three or four branches, placed at great fta
:ions of America for the fake of greater conve
nience to bulinefs, would :jive new wings to the
circulation of private credit, and also to public
:redit; for, supported by the State, the bank
would for its own interest support the State. The
:onlequence of the firm eftablifliment of public
iijd private credit, obtained by those operations,
would be, and at no very distant period, that
foreign nations would throw their money into
the public funds of America with as little fear,
is they do hito those of their own country. And
the consequence of that confidence again would
be, that British merchants poflefled of property,
in the public funds of America, would make
payment often in that property, and trade often
upon it ; America would remit her payment al
most always in lier own produce, and carry on
her trade, and take her station high in the rank
of nations, either for defence or offence, on the
money of other countries.
TO distinguish men by the difference of their
moral qualities, to espouse one party from a sense
ps just ice, to oppose another even with indigna
ion when excited by iniquity, are the common
indications of probity, and the operations of an
upright, animated and generous spirit. To guard
against unjust partialities, and ill-grounded an- •
tipathies ; to maintain that composure of mind,
which, without impairing its sensibility or ardor,
proceeds in every instance with dilcernment and
penetration, are the marks of a vigorous and cul
tivated spirit. To be able to follow the deflates
of such a spirit, through all the varieties of hu
man life, and with a mind always matter of itfelf,
in prosperity and adversity, and poflefled -of
its abilities when the fubjedts in hazard are life
or.freedom, as much as in treating simple quel'-
tions of interest, are the triumphs of magnankn
i y, and true elevation of mind.