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1761, as to employ British and foreign ships to the amount of 707,659 tons, which is 149,500 more than we employed in the last year of the peace. Thus our trade increased more than a fifth ; our British navigation had increased likewise with this astonishing increase of trade, but was not able to keep pace with it; and we added about 120,000 tons of foreign shipping to the 60,000, which had been employed in the last year of the peace. Whatever happened to our shipping in the former years of the war, this would be no true state of the case at the time of the treaty. If we had lost something in the beginning, we had then recovered, and more than recovered, all our losses. Such is the ground of the doleful complaints of the author, that the carrying trade was wholly engrossed by the neutral nations.
I have done fairly, and even very moderately, in taking this year, and not his average, as the standard of what might be expected in future, had the war continued. The author will be compelled to allow it, unless he undertakes to show, first, that the possession of Canada, Martinico, Guadaloupe, Grenada, the Havannah, the Philippines, the whole African trade, the whole East India trade, and the whole Newfoundland fishery, had no certain inevitable tendency to increase the British shipping; unless, in the second place, he can prove that those trades were, or might be, by law or indulgence, carried on in foreign vessels; and unless, thirdly, he can demonstrate that the premium of insurance on British ships was rising as the war continued. He can prove not one of these points. I will show him a fact more that is mortal to his assertions. It is the state of our shipping in 1762. The author had his reasons for stopping short at the preceding year. It would have appeared, had he proceeded further, that our tonnage was in a course of uniform augmentation, owing to the freight derived from our foreign conquests, and to the perfect security of our navigation from our clear and decided superiority at sea. This, I say, would have appeared from the state of the two years:
1761. British, ... 527,557 tons.
The two last years of the peace were in no degree equal to these. Much of the navigation of 1763 was also owing to the war; this is manifest from the large part of it employed in the carriage from the ceded islands, with which the communication still continued open. No such circumstances of glory and advantage ever attended upon a war. Too happy will be our lot, if we should again be forced into a war, to behold anything that shall resemble them; and if we were not then the better for them, it is not in the ordinary course of God's providence to mend our condition.
In vain does the author declaim on the high premiums given for the loans during the war. His long note, swelled with calculations on that subject, (even supposing the most inaccurate of all calculations to be just,) would be entirely thrown away, did it not serve to raise a wonderful opinion of his financial skill in those who are not less surprised than edified, when, with a solemn face and mysterious air, they are told that two and two make four. For what else do we learn from this note ? That the more expense is incurred by a nation, the more money will be required to defray it; that in proportion to the continuance of that expense, will be the continuance of borrowing; that the increase of borrowing and the increase of debt will go hand in hand ; and, lastly, that the more money you want, the harder it will be to get it; and that the scarcity of the commodity will enhance the price. Who ever doubted the truth, or the insignificance, of these propositions ? what do they prove ? that war is expensive, and peace desirable. They contain nothing more than a common-place against war; the easiest of all topics. To bring them home to his purpose, he ought to have shown that our enemies had money upon better terms; which he has not shown, neither can he. I shall speak more fully to this point in another place. He ought to have shown that the money they raised, upon whatever terms, had procured them a more lucrative return. He knows that our expenditure purchased commerce and conquest: theirs acquired nothing but defeat and bankruptcy.
Thus the author has laid down his ideas on the subject of war. Next follow those he entertains on that of peace. The treaty of Paris upon the whole has his approbation. Indeed, if his account of the war be just, he might have spared him
self all further trouble. The rest is drawn on as an inevitable conclusion. If the house of Bourbon had the advantage, she must give the law; and the peace, though it were much worse than it is, had still been a good one. But, as the world is yet deluded on the state of that war, other arguments are necessary; and the author has in my opinion very ill supplied them. He tells of many things we have got, and of which he has made out a kind of bill. This matter may be brought within a very narrow compass, if we come to consider the requisites of a good peace under, some plain distinct heads. I apprehend they may be reduced to these: 1. Stability; 2. Indemnification ; 3. Alliance.
As to the first, the author more than obscurely hints in several places, that he thinks the peace not likely to last. However, he does furnish a security; a security, in any light, I fear, but insufficient; on his hypothesis, surely a very odd one: “By stipulating for the entire possession of the continent, (says he,) the restored French islands are become in some measure dependent on the British empire; and the good faith of France in observing the treaty guaranteed by the value at which she estimates their possession.” 2 This author soon grows weary of his principles. They seldom last him for two pages together. When the advantages of the war were to be depreciated, then the loss of the ultramarine colonies lightened the expenses of France, facilitated her remittances, and therefore her colonists put them into our hands. According to this author's system, the actual possession of these colonies ought to give us little or no advantage in the negotiation for peace; and get the chance of possessing them on a future occasion gives a perfect security for the preservation of that peace.3 The conquest of the Havannah, if it did not serve Spain, rather distressed England, says our author. But the molestation which her galleons may suffer from our station in Pensacola gives us advantages, for which we were not allowed to credit the nation for the Havannah itself; a place surely full as well situated for I P. 12, 13.
2 P. 17.
3 P. 6. * “Our merchants suffered by the detention of the galleons, as their correspondents in Spain were disabled from paying them for their goods sent to America.” State of the Nation, p. 7.
every external purpose as Pensacola, and of more internal benefit than ten thousand Pensacolas.
The author sets very little by conquests ;I suppose it is because he makes them so very lightly. On this subject he speaks with the greatest certainty imaginable. We have, according to him, nothing to do, but to go and take possession, whenever we think proper, of the French and Spanish settlements. It were better that he had examined a little what advantage the peace gave us towards the invasion of these colonies, which we did not possess before the peace. It would not have been amiss if he had consulted the public experience, and our commanders, concerning the absolute certainty of those conquests on which he is pleased to found our security. And if, after all, he should have discovered them to be so very sure, and so very easy, he might at least, to preserve consistency, have looked a few pages back, and (no unpleasing thing to him) listened to himself, where he says, “ that the most successful enterprise could not compensate to the nation for the waste of its people, by carrying on war in unhealthy climates." % A position which he repeats again, page 9. So that, according to himself, his security is not worth the suit; according to fact, he has only a chance, God knows what a chance, of getting at it; and therefore, according to reason, the giving up the most valuable of all possessions, in hopes to conquer them back, under any advantage of situation, is the most ridiculous security that ever was imagined for the peace of a nation. It is true his friends did not give up Canada; they could not give up everything ; let us make the most of it. We have Canada, we know its value. We have not the French any longer to fight in North America ; and from this circumstance we derive considerable advantages. But here let me rest a little. The author touches upon a string which sounds under his fingers but a tremulous and melancholy note. North America was once indeed a great strength to this nation, in opportunity of ports, in ships, in provisions, in men. We found her a sound, an active, a vigorous member of the empire. I hope, by wise management, she will again become so. But one of our capital present misfortunes is her discontent and dis· P. 12, 13.
2 P. 6.
obedience. To which of the author's favourites this discontent is owing, we all know but too sufficiently. It would be a dismal event, if this foundation of his security, and indeed of all our public strength, should, in reality, become our weakness; and if all the powers of this empire, which ought to fall with a compacted weight upon the head of our enemies, should be dissipated and distracted by a jealous vigilance, or by hostile attempts upon one another. Ten Canadas cannot restore that security for the peace, and for everything valuable to this country, which we have lost along with the affection and the obedience of our colonies. He is the wise minister, he is the true friend to Britain, who shall be able to restore it.
To return to the security for the peace. The author tells us, that the original great purposes of the war were more than accomplished by the treaty. Surely be has experience and reading enough to know, that, in the course of a war, events may happen, that render its original very far from being its principal purpose. This original may dwindle by circumstances, so as to become not a purpose of the second or even the third magnitude. I trust this is so obvious that it will not be necessary to put cases for its illustration. In that war, as soon as Spain entered into the quarrel, the security of North America was no longer the sole nor the foremost object. The Family Compact had been I know not how long before in agitation. But then it was that we saw produced into daylight and action the most odious and most formidable of all the conspiracies against the liberties of Europe that ever has been framed. The war with Spain was the first fruits of that league; and a security against that league ought to have been the fundamental point of a pacification with the powers who compose it. We had materials in our hands to have constructed that security in such a manner as never to be shaken. But how did the virtuous and able men of our author labour for this great end? They took no one step towards it. On the contrary, they countenanced, and, indeed, as far as it depended on them, recognised it in all its parts; for our plenipotentiary treated with those who acted for the two crowns, as if they had been different ministers of the same monarch. The Spanish minister