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without doubt, some individuals, respectable both for their knowledge and integrity; but I put it to the can. dor of gentlemen, whether they are the species of men whose wisdom, energy, and diligence, would give any promise of emancipating the East India concerns from their present disasters and disgraces ? Indeed, both the questions may be answered in two words. Why not not choose the Directors who have ruined the company? Why not leave the power of election in the Proprie. tors, who have thwarted every good attempted by the Directors?
“ The last point, adverted to by the learned gentleman relates to influence ; and upon his remarks, combined with what fell from 'some others upon the same subject, I beg leave to make a few observations. Much of my life has been employed to diminish the inordinate influence of the crown. In common with others, I succeeded; and I glory in it. To support that kind of influence which I formerly subverted, is a deed of which I shall never deserve to be accused. The affirmation with which I first introduced this plan, I now repeat; I reassert that this bill as little augments the influence of the crown, as any measure which can be devised for the government of India, that presents the slightest promise of solid success; and that it tends to increase it in a far less degree than the bill proposed by the learned gercleman. The very genius of influence consists in hope, or fear ; fear of losing what we have, of hope of gaining more.
Make these commissioners removable at will, and you set all the little passions of human nature alloat: If benefit can be derived from the bill, you had better burn it than make the duration short of the time necessary to accomplish the plans it is destined for. That consideration pointed out the expediency of a fixed pe
riod; and, in that respect, it accords with the principle of the learned gentleman's bill; with this superior advantage, that, instead of leaving the commissioners liable to all the influence, which springs from the appointment of a Governor General, removable at pleasure, this bill invests them with the power for the time specified, upon the same tenure that British Judges hold their station, removable upon delinquency, punishable upon guilt, but fearless of power, if they discharge their trust; liable to no seducement, and with full time and authority to execute their functions for the common good of the counę try, and for their own glory. I beg of the House to attend to this difference, and then judge upon the point of increasing the influence of the crown, contrasted with the learned gentleman's bill.
“ The state of accusations against me upon this subject of influence is truly curious. The learned gentleman (Mr. DuNDAS] in strains of emphasis, declares, that this bill diminishes the influence of the crown beyond all former attempts; and calls upon those who formerly voted with him in support of that influence, against our efforts to reduce it, and who now sit near me, to join him now in opposing my attempts to diminish that darling influence. He tells them, that I out-herod HEROD; that I am outdoing all my former out-doings; and proclaims me, as the merciless and insatiate enemy of the influence of the crown."
On the oth of December, Mr. Fox, attended by a numerous train of members, presented his bill at the bar of the house of lords, where it was violently opposed, and finally rejected. Among the many speeches which were delivered on that occasion, the following by lord THURLow excited particular attention.
« MY LORDS, « The noble and learned lord has not yet given any solution to my disficulties. I ask the noble and learned lord [lord LOUGHBOROUGH] if he can reconcile the principle of the present bill to the principles of the British constitution, admitting even, what we have not as yet the smallest cause to admit, that the necessity of an immediate interference by parliament is apparent. The noble and learned lord fills so high an office in two of His Majesty's courts, that I should naturally expect to see him the champion of our glorious constitution. It is not fitting that so great a character should muddle in the dirty pool of politics. The present East-India bill means evidently to create a power which is unknown to the constitution, an imperium in imperio ; but as I abhor tyranny in all its shapes, I shall oppose most strenuously this strange attempt to destroy the true balance of our constitution. The present bill does not tend to increase the influence of the crown; but it tends to set up a power in the kingdom, which may be used in opposition crown,
and to the destruction of the liberties of the people. I wish to see the crown great and respectable ; but, if the present bill should pass, it will be no longer worthy of a man of honour to wear. The king will in fact take the diadem from his own head, and place it on the head of Mr. Fox. Your lordships have heard much of the gth report of the Select Committee. That extraordinary performance has been in every body's hands. The ingenious author states, that the East India Company is in possession of a vast empire, with such a boundless patronage, civil, military, marine, commercial, and financial; in every department of which such fortunes have been made, as could be made no where else.' This, my lords, is the true description of that vast
and boundless patronage, which this bill means to throw into the hands of the minister of the present day. I speak the language of the late Marquis of ROCKINGHAM, for whom I had the highest respect and regard, and to whom I have been much obliged, when I say, that every
, minister of this country will naturally strengthen his party by increasing his friends, and disposing of every office of honour and emolument amongst those who will support his measures : with this explanation of the system on which the present ministers act, and indeed on which all ministers must açt, let me conjure your lord. ships to weigh well the consequences which will result to the constitution of this country, should the present bill pass into a law. By the fundamental principles of this constitution, the executive power of the state is placed in the hands of the crown. We have heard much, my lords, of late years, cf the alarming influence of the crown; I will candidly confess to your lordships, that I have never seen the influence of the crown too great. I wish to see the crown great and respectable ; and, if the boundless patronage of the East must be taken froni the company, if regulations wisely adopted and steadily enforced, will not be sufficient to remedy existing evils, let the boundless patronage of the East be placed where only with safety to the constitution of this country it can be placed-in the hand of the executive government. In the last year we passed an act to prevent contractors from sitting in parliament; but by the present bill Mr. Fox's contractors do not even vacate their seats. Such is the distinction between the crown and a subject.
: “ In the last year, we passed an act to prevent Custom House officers from voting for members of paliament, so cautious were we to preserve the purity of the House
of Commons, and to diminish the influence of the crown; but, in defiance of every principle which was then professed, no jealousy is expressed of the man who is to have in his possession the boundless patronage of the East. The doctrine advanced by the noble and learned lord is indeed extraordinary. He tells you that the act of 1773 was an infringement of the charter of the East India Company, but that his objection was, that it did not go far enough ; and therefore he would totally destroy the charter. The noble and learned lord will recollect the doctrine of the King's Attorney General (Sir ROBERT SAWYER] in the unconstitutional and infamous reign of CHARLES the Second, as detailed to us in that ministerial gazette, that receptacle of all true intelligence, Mr. Woon. FALL's paper: yet, my lords, how was the doctrine of Sir Robert Sawyer reprobated by the Chief Justice of that day! The charter of the city of London was taken away, not because, according to Sir ROBERT SAWYER's opinion, it was for their good, but because the court was induced to declare it had been forfeited. At the Revolution, how. ever, it was restored, and the strongest marks of abhorrence were expressed at so atrocious a deed, perpetrated under the semblance of justice. But before the House can consider this very important bill on that ground (to which every Englishman must naturally object to it, that it is directly subversive of our venerable constitution, and on that ground I challenge the noble and learned lord to meet my argument fully and fairly) it will be necessary to consider the real state of the East India company. Let us not be misled by reports of committees from another House, to which, I again repeat, I pay as much attention as I would to the history of ROBINSON CRusoe. Let the conduct of the East India company be fairly and fully inquired into ; let it be acquitted or condemned by evi,