Gazette of the United-States. (New-York [N.Y.]) 1789-1793, May 30, 1789, Page 56, Image 4
LETTER. fThe RIGHT GOVERNMENT of a COMMON WEALTH EXAMINED. [Continued from our IT*happens universally, whtn the people in a body, or by a single representative afiembly, at empt to exercise all the powers of government, 'hey always create three or four idols, who make <* bargain with each other fir It, to do nothing which lhall displease any one : Thele hold this agreement, until one thinks himlelf able to dif emban ass himfelf of the other two ; then they quarrel, and the Itrongelt becomes single tyrant, cut why is the name of Pompey omitted, who was the third of this triumvirate? Because it would have been too unpopular ; it would have tooeafily confuted his argument, and have turn ed against himfelf,to have said that this aflociation was between Pompey, Cnefar, and Crafius, against Cato, the senate, the constitution, and liberty, which was thefaift. Can you find a people who will never be divided in opinion ? who will be al ways unanimous ! The people of Rome were di • vided, as all other people ever have been and will be, into a variety of parties and factions. Pom pey, Crafius, and Caesar, at the head of differ ent parties, were jealous of each other: Their divisions ltrengthened the senate and its friends, andfurnilheil meansand opportunities of defeating many of their ambitious designs. Ca:far perceived it, and paid his court both to Pompey and Crafius, in order to hinder them from joining the senate against him. He separately represented the ad vantage which their enemies derived from their mifunderHandings, and the ease with which, if united, they might concert among themfelvesall arfairs of the republic, gratify every friend, and disappoint every enemy. ihe other example, of Augustus, Lepidus,and .Antony, is equally unfor tunate : Both are demonstrations that the people did think of usurping others rights, and that tliey did not mind any way to preserve their own.— The Senate was now annihilated, many of them murdered : Augustus, Lepidus, and Antony, were popular demagogues,who agreed together to fleece the flock between them,until the molt cunning of the three destroyed the other two, fleeced the ftieep alone, and transmitted the Ihears to a line of tyrants. How can this writer fay then, that, " while the government remained untouched in " the people's hands, every particular man lived " fafe ?" The ilirec't contrary is true. Every man lived fafe, only while the Senate remained as a check and balance to the people ; the moment that contfoul was destroyed, no man was fafe. While the government remained untouched in the various orders, the Consuls, Senate, and people, mutually balancing each other, it might be said, with some truth, that no man coidd be undone, unless a true and fatisfadtory reason was rendered to the world for his deftruiftion ; but as soon as the Senate was deftrcyed, and the government came untouched into the people's hands, no man lived fafe but the Triumvirs and their tools ; any man might be, and multitudes of the belt men were, ■undone, without rendering any reason to the world for their deftruiftion, but the will, the fear, or the revenge of some tyrant. Thele popular leaders, in our author's own langitage, " laved " and destroyed, deprefled and advanced, whom " they plealed, with a wet finger." • The second argument to prove that the people, in their fuccefiive single allcmblies, are the J)elt keepers of their own liberties, is, " because it is " ever the people's care to fee that authority be " so constituted, that it fliall be rather a burthen " than profit to those that undertake it; and be " qualified with such slender advantages of profit " or pleasure, that men fliall reap little by the « enjoyment. The happy confcquence whereof " is this, that none but honest, generous, and " public spirits, will then defile to be in autho " rity, and that only for the common good. " Hence it was, that in the infancy of the Roman " liberty there was no canvafling for voices; but " single and plain-hearted men were called, in " treated, and in a manner forced with impor " tunity to the helm of government, in regard of " that great trouble and pains that followed the " employment. Thus Cincinnatus was fetched " out of the field from his plough, and placed, " much against his will, in the fublimc dignity of "Dictator: So the noble Camillus, and Fabius, " and Curius, were, with much ado, drawn from " the recreation of gardening to the trouble of " governirg; and the consul year being over, " they returned with much gladness again to " their private employment." The firft question which would arise in the inind of an intelligent and attentive reader would be, whether this were bin lefque, and a epublic traves ty ? But as the principle of this second reason is very pleasing to a large body of narrow fpii its in every fociciy, and as it ljasbeen a lopted by some refpciTtable au;lioriries,without lii£icientconfiie; - ation, it may be proper to £jjve it a lerious inves tigation* Tiie people have, in some countries and seasons, made their fc;*iecs irk.fir.nc ; and i: i- willi some ro make authority a burthen, But what has been the confequencc to the people I Their service has been delerted, and they have been betrayed. Those very persons >vho have flattered the meanness of the stingy, by offering to fervethem gratis, ana bypurchaling their fuf frages, have carried the liberties and properties of their conftirueiits to market, and fold them for very handsome private profit to the monarchical and ariftocratical portions offociety : And so long as the rule of making their lervice a burthen is pei filled in, so long will the people be served with the fame kind of address and fidelity, by hypocritical pretences to disinterested benevo lence and patriotifin, until their confidence is gained, their affections secured, and their entliu iiafm excited, and by knavish bargains and sales of their cause and intercft afterwards. But al though there is always among the people a party who are jultly chargeable with meanness and ava rice, envy and ingratitude, and this party has sometimes been a majority, who have literally made tlie?r service burthemfome, yet this is noi the general character of the people; a more universal fault is, too much affection, Confidence, and gratitude, not to fucli as really serve them, whether with or against their inclinations, but to those who flatter their inclinations, and gain theit hearts. Honest and generous spirits will disdain to deceive the people; and if the public service is wilfully rendered burthenfome, they will really be averse to be in it : but hypocrites enough will be found, who will pretend to be also loath tc serve, and feign a reluctant consent for the public good, while they mean to plunder in every way they can conceal. There are conjunctures whenji is the duty of a good citizen to hazard and facrifice all for his country : but, in ordinary times, it is equally the duty and interest of the community not to fufferit. Every wife and free people, like the Romans, will eflablifh the maxim, to fuffer nc generous action for the public to go unrewarded, Can our author be supposed to be lincere, in re coinmendingit as a principle of policy to any na> tion to render her service in the army, navy, 01 in council, a burthen, an unpleasant employ ment to all her citizens I Would he depend upor finding human spirits enough to fill public offices who would be fufficiently elevated in patriotifrc and general benevolence to facrifice their ease health, time, parents, wives, children, and every comfort, convenience, and elegance of life, for the public good Is there any religion or mora lity that requires this? Which permits the many to live in affluence and ease, while it obliges i few to live in misery for their fakes ? The peo ple are fond of calling public men their ser vants, and some are not able to conceive them tc be servants, without making them Have*, and treating them as planters treat their negroes :— But, good makers, have a care how you use your power; you may be tyrants as well as public officers. It seems, according to our author him (elf, that honefly and generosity of spirit, and the pallion for the public good, were not motives ftronw enough to induce his heroes to defireto be in public life ; they inuft be called, intreated, and forced. By single and plain-hearted men, he means the fame, no doubt, with those described by the other exprelfions, honest, generous, and public spirits. Cincinnatus, Camillus, Kabius, and Cm ius, were men as simple and as generous as any; and tliefe all, by his own account, had a strong aversion to public service. Either these great characters inuft be supposed to have practii'ed the Ado Epifcopari, to have held up a fictitious aversion for what they really desired, or we must allow their reluctance to have been lin cere. If counterfeit, these examples do not de serve our imitation ; if sincere, they will never be followed by men enough to carry 011 the bulineis of the world. The glory of these Roman cha racters cannot be obfeured, nor ought the admi ration of their sublime virtues to be diminished ; but fucli examples are as rare among ttatefinen, as Homers andMiltons among poets. A free peo ple of common sense will not cfepend upon finding a fufficient number of such characters at any one time, but less a succession of them for any lor <r duration, for the support of their liberties. To make a law, that armies should be led, Senates counselled, negociations conducted, by none but fucli characters, would be to decree that the busi ness of the world should come to a full stand : And it must have flood as still in those periods of the Roman liiftory as at this hour ; for such cha racters were nearly as scarce then as they are now. The parallels of Lyfander, Pericles, Themiftocles, and Ccefar, are much easier to find in history, than those of Camillus, Eabius, and Curius. If the latter were with much difficulty drawn from their gardens to government, and returned with pleasure at iliq end of the conlular year to their rural amusements; the former are as ardent to continue in the public service, and if the public will not legally reward them, they plunder the public to reward themselves. The father of 1 hemiftocles had more aversion to public life than Cincinnatus; and, to moderate the propen lity of his foil, wljo ardently aspired to the highest offices of the llatc, pointed to the old galliesVol ling in the docks—" There," fays he, " fee the ' old ftutefmen, worn ent hi the fervke of their " counwy, thus always neglected whm no loiter "of ufc !" Yet the ion's ardour not abated though he was not one of those honest spirits that aimed only at the public good. Pericles too though his fortune was small, and the honest emoluments of his office very moderate, disco vered no such averlion to the service; on the contrary, he entered into an emulation in pro digality with Ciinon, who wus rich, in orde; equally to dazzle the eyes of the multitude. To make himfelf the foul of the republic, and wai ter of the aifec r tions of the populace, to enable them to attend the public allemblVi and then., trical representations for his purposes, he laviflj. Ed his donations : Yet he was so far from beino honclt and generous, and aiming solely at the public good, that he availed himfelf of the riches of the Hate to supply his extravagance ot ex pence, and made it an invariable maxim to fa crifice every thing to his own ambition. When the public finances were exhaulted, to avoid ac counting for the public money, he involved his country in a war with Sparta. (To be continued.) Boston, May 20,1789. Agreeably to an order of the Hon. Secreiary at War, Mr. Joseph Callen der has just finifhed the Inscription ordered by Congress to be engraved on the TWO CANNON, which constituted one moiety of the American Ar tillery, at the commencement of the late war. The inscription is finely executed in relievo—as follows. The HANCOCK, one—The ADAMS, the other. Sacred to Liberty. This one of Four Cannon, Which coniUtuted the whole train of Field Artillery poflefled by the Britijk Colonies of North ■ America, at the commencement of the War, on the 19th of April, M,DCC,LXXV. This CANNON and its fellow, belonging to a number of citizens of Boston, were used in many engagements dui ing the war. The other two, the property of the Government of Maflachufetts, were taken by the enemy. By order of the United States, In Congress allembled. May 19, 1 788. NATIONAL MONITOR No. VI. " Government is so far the rcfult of a free choice, as the people are led to its adoption from sentiment." IT is a trite, though true obfertation, that 4t good education isthc M foundation oi all human nappmefs;" Tt,sis so umverfiHy a»- knowledged in private lje % that the condud of trie enlightened part of waukwd may be considered as a comment upon the convtciion of its im portance ; —hence the common observation, that g,;od education is the beflfortune—hence the extreme fohcitude of parents to Jham ever) verve, that they may extend the plan oj their children's improvements in Jcience— that they may enjoy advantages which their fres feel the want of—hence aJfo the rapid progress that has been made in improving upen ancient modes of infimtliofr —opening neiv avenue* to knowledge, cud expanding our views in those walks that had been familiar to us. It appears Jrom these specimens, that under the auspices oj peace, Mid good there is every reason to that the great im portance of education will continually appreciate in the minds of our c;ti* zens aiidthat in this refped, 44 the w llftemcfs will ere long be made 4to bloflom like the rose Already do we behold Sclcncccourtwg the funs ef America to the retirements of rural life; Seminaries oj Learn ing arjing in those retreats, late the haunts of savage men, uld and untutored as their fellow-tenants of the woods. Ihis deeply impressed fen fe of tUe importance of education, may, ar.i doultlefs will, operate mofi powerfully and effeliually, in producing the necejjary provifonfor common education—as it will come in to aid those necejjary arrangements, which mufl be made by the fathers, the vuxgf trates, the ruling powers of villages, towns, and cities, to effect this im portant objefl. But this it cannot be supposed, will extend its benign in fluence so far, as tofupertede the necefhty of Congreflional interference in a fubjett of so great magnitude, as NATIONAL INSTITUTIONS for a NATIONAL EDUCATION. This is doubtless a desideratum, that the wife and philanthropic part of mankind will exult to fee realized—public JcmiMaries, in which na tional, governmental, and patriotic inflruflion /hall form, the great outlines of thefflem. Irom Juch a centre, those rays of knowledge, may diverge in every pifftble direttion, which will be produHive of the mojl salutary confe quentes\ for it requires nutuing kiore than a feeling sense of the impor °f and civil government, founded on a competent un- Jerfl, ah ding of tKeir principles and iutrinfic excellencies, to engage the a ffc£tions of the human mind in their fupport\ but the foundation of m uunerfal attochjzeut to right principles, whether of a public or a private nature, mufl be lard in youth. C. Till PRESIDENT'S HOUSEHOLD. W HEREAS, all Servants and others, employed to procure prov.Aons, orfupplies, for the Household, of The Pkfsident o( the Un i tic States, will be furniihed with monies for thole puipofes. Notice is thorofore given, That no accounts, for the payment of which the Public might be coniidered as are to be opei.ed with any of their. Samuel Frauncss, Steward of the Houfshpld. Mat 4th, 1789. BSUBSCRIPTIONS for the 14 COURIER DE BOSTON a new weekly paper, publijked at Boflon in the trench Language, are re ceived at A O, 9, Maiden Lane. [The utility-os a paper m this aliTiolt univei lul language need not be hinted to those, who with to ac-i quire the French tongue, j * „S^Srfi'"J itts f rom "« ginning, oj the GAZETTE Of THE , ' mjy any tlmc be oitjined by those who chuft tc futjcrioejor that publication, atthe Editor's Office, St. 9, Maidm-Unr Publi/hed by JOHN t'ENNO, No. 9, Maiden- I an f, ne»i the Oswego-Ma rksi , KfiW-Yosn.