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now to be published. I shall not introduce one observation or comment of my own. :
*« There never did, there never will, and there never can exist a parliament, or any de scription of men, or any generation of men, in any country, poffeffed of the right or the power of binding and controuling posterity to the end of time, or of commanding for ever how the world shall be governed, or who shall govern it; and therefore all such clauses, acts, or declarations, by which the makers of them attempt to do what they have neither the right nor the power to do, nor the power to execute, are in themselves null and void.”
† “ The vanity and presumption of governing beyond the grave, is the most ridiculous and infolent of all tyrannies.”
I « It is somewhat extraordinary, that the offence, for which James II. was expelled, that of setting up power by assumption, should be re-acted under another shape and form, by the parliament that expelled him.”
§ “ All therefore that can be said of the clauses of the act of settlement is, that they are a formality of words, of as much import, as if those, who used them had addressed a congratulation to themselves, and in the ori
. Vid. Rights of Man, p. 9. + Ibid. p. 9.
ental stile of antiquity, had said, O parliament, live for ever!”.
* “ It will confequently follow, that if the clauses themselves, so far as they set up an assumed, ufurped dominion over posterity for ever, are unauthoritative, and in their nature null and void.”
+ “When I contemplate the natural dige nity of man; when I feel (for nature has not been kind enough to me to blunt my feels ings) for the honour and happiness of its character, I become irritated at the attempo to govern mankind by force and fraud, as if they were all knaves and fools, and can scarcely avoid disgust at those, who are thus imposed upon.”..
I “Can then Mr. Burke produce the English conftitution? If he cannot, we may fairly conclude, that though it has been so much talked about, no such thing as a constitution exists, or ever did exist, and consequently that the people have yet a constitution to form."
$" The English government is one of those, which arose out of a conquest, and not out of society, and consequently it arose over the people ; and though it has been much
• Rights of Man, p. 14:
$ Ibid. p. 51.
modified from the opportunity of circumstances since the time of William the Conqueror, the country has never yet regenerated itself, and is therefore without a constitution.”
*“In England, game is made the property of those, at whose expence it is not fed, and with respect to monopolies, the country is cut up into monopolies. Every chartered town is an aristocratical monopoly in itself, and the qualification of electors proceeds out of those chartered monopolies. Is this freedom? Is this what Mr. Burke means by a conftitution ?”
t« In these chartered monopolies, a man coming from another part of the country is hunted from them, as if he were a foreign enemy. An Englishman is not free of his own country ; every one of those places prefents a barrier in his way, and tells him he is not a freeman--that he has no rights."
$“ Every thing in the English government appears to me. the reverse of what it ought to be, and of what it is faid to be. The parliament, imperfectly and capriciously elected as it is, is neverthelefs fuppofed to hold the national purse in trust for the nation; but in the manner, in which an English parlia
ment is constructed, it is like a man being both mortgager and mortgagee; and in the case of misapplication of trust, it is the criminal sitting in judgment upon himself.”
*“ In England, the right of war and peace is said to reside in a metaphor, shewn at the Tower for sixpence or a shilling a-piece; so are the lions; and it would be a step nearer to reason to say it resided in them; for any inanimate metaphor is no more than a hat or a cap."
† “ It may with reason be said, that in the manner the English nation is represented, it signifies not where this right resides, whether in the crown or in the parliament. War is the common harvest of all those, who parti. cipate in the division and expenditure of public money in all countries. It is the art of conquering at home; the object of it is an increase of revenue; and as revenue cannot be increased without taxes, a pretence must be made for expenditures. In reviewing the history of the English government, its wars and its taxes, a ftander-by, not blinded by prejudice, nor warped by interest, would declare, that taxes were not raised to carry on wars, but that wars were raised to carry on taxes." * Rights of Man, p. 61.
: « The
*“ The portion of liberty enjoyed in England, is just enough to enslave a country by, more productively than by despotism; and that, as the real object of all despotism is revenue, that a government fo formed ob. tains more than it could, either by direct defpotism, or in a full state of freedom, and is
therefore on the ground of interest opposed · to both.” : .
7 " Aristocracy is a law against every law of nature, and nature herself calls for it's destruction. Establish family justice, and aristocracy falls. By the aristocratical law of primogenitureship, in a family of six children, five are exposed. Aristocracy has never but one child; the rest are begotten to be devoured; they are thrown to the cannibal for prey, and the natural parent prepares the unnatural repast.”
I“ There is an unnatural unfitness in an aristocracy to be legislators for a nation ; their ideas of distributive justice are corrupted at the very source; they begin life by trampling on all their younger brothers and sisters, and relations of every kind, and are taught and educated fo to do. With what ideas of jufa cice or honour can that man enter an house
• Rights of Man, p. 62. + Ibid. p.69.' . Ibid. p. 70. . Kk4