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the manner of its decision was from above, emanating from those who were most largely interested in cheap bread, and not from below. It had to be made to appear that this free trade was all in favour of the working classes. Let us see how this was done.

""Was there ever prosperity with high price of bread?" asked Cobden, and answered, No. Whence did he draw his proof? From the experience of thirty years, between 1815 and 1845. "Only make bread permanently cheap, and you will raise up a permanent prosperity." But he ignored the circumstance that he was arguing from protective experience to free-trade results. Now this statement of Cobden's may be met with its opposite from Huskisson. In 1825 there existed prosperity with high price of bread; in 1826, depression with a low price. This is Huskisson's evidence: "A spirit of overspeculation and over-trading prevailed. At that moment, when the manufacturing districts were in full employment, when there was no complaint among the population, corn was 7s. or 8s. a quarter dearer than it was at present." "I know there has been a glut of our manufactures in all the foreign markets; and I also know that if anything greatly depressed the price of corn in the home-market, it would only lead to a further aggravation of our difficulties and distresses." "Sir, I say this advisedly. I say that the present average price of wheat is one which could not in my opinion be materially lowered, without producing more of suffering than of relief to all classes of the community" (vol. ii. pp. 549, 556).

To state that prosperity was associated only with low prices of wheat was obviously inaccurate. But it served a purpose, as did also the assertion that in 1842 the corn merchants were ruined to the extent of £2,000,000 by the Corn Law. And these are instances of the partial method pursued by Cobden in order to attain the desired goal. Why did he not balance all the gains of the corn merchants with their losses? Because it was his object, no matter the soundness or truthfulness of the means, to achieve his end.

But if the pernicious Corn Law was the direct source of the loss of £2,000,000 to the corn merchant—a small section of an interest—what has been the effect of the want of that law upon the interest itself? Cobden complained that the corn merchants lost £2,000,000. But consumers gained thereby, for none of this money left the country.

Now, what is the charge of the protectionist? That the want of the Corn Law caused a loss of no less a sum than £425,000,000 to the agricultural interest between 1846 and 1866; and that all this money was expended abroad on the production of the first necessaries of life.

No wonder, then, that agriculture should become depressed—in spite, too, of the removal of the greatest burden upon the land, the destruction of the game that ate up its produce. Contrast this depression (predicted by the protectionists) with the promises attending a free intercourse in corn. We were to grow, instead of 16,000,000 quarters, 20,000,000 quarters. There was to ensue a demand for labour in the agricultural districts. We were to be self-supporting, if we grew as much as we may grow, under the gentle stimulus of the imports.

Such was the line pursued to banish the fears of those who, while self-interested in a universal free trade, were yet averse to advance one interest at the expense of another in their own country. In other words, all the manufacturers indiscriminately could sacrifice agriculture with very good grace. For it was shown that protection was the bane of the farmers; that free trade was the proper stimulus; and that if agriculture did not progress under free trade, then it would be the fault, not of a free competition, but of the farmers' incompetency. So Cobden set up to teach the farmer his trade. He must drain with tiles; he must hew down hedgerow-trees; he must destroy the game upon his land. In short, he must do everything to spend capital, without looking ahead to see how it shall be returned to him. This was described as the essential preparation for the coming competition. If he could not bear up against this, then he was told by the free-trader that "he had no wish to preserve that which cannot bear the healthy climate of pure coming than of relief to all classes of the community" (vol. ii. pp. 549, 556).

To state that prosperity was associated only with low prices of wheat was obviously inaccurate. But it served a purpose, as did also the assertion that in 1842 the corn merchants were ruined to the extent of £2,000,000 by the Corn Law. And these are instances of the partial method pursued by Cobden in order to attain the desired goal. Why did he not balance all the gains of the corn merchants with their losses? Because it was his object, no matter the soundness or truthfulness of the means, to achieve his end.

But if the pernicious Corn Law was the direct source of the loss of £2,000,000 to the corn merchant—a small section of an interest—what has been the effect of the want of that law upon the interest itself? Cobden complained that the corn merchants lost £2,000,000. But consumers gained thereby, for none of this money left the country.

Now, what is the charge of the protectionist? That the want of the Corn Law caused a loss of no less a sum than £425,000,000 to the agricultural interest between 1846 and 1866; and that all this money was expended abroad on the production of the first necessaries of life.

No wonder, then, that agriculture should become depressed—in spite, too, of the removal of the greatest burden upon the land, the destruction of the game that ate up its produce. Contrast this depression (predicted by the protectionists) with the promises attending a free intercourse in corn. We were to grow, instead of 16,000,000 quarters, 20,000,000 quarters. There was to ensue a demand for labour in the agricultural districts. We were to be self-supporting, if we grew as much as we may grow, under the gentle stimulus of the imports.

Such was the line pursued to banish the fears of those who, while self-interested in a universal free trade, were yet averse to advance one interest at the expense of another in their own country. In other words, all the manufacturers indiscriminately could sacrifice agriculture with very good grace. For it was shown that protection was the bane of the farmers; that free trade was the proper stimulus; and that if agriculture did not progress under free trade, then it would be the fault, not of a free competition, but of the farmers' incompetency. So Cobden set up to teach the farmer his trade. He must drain with tiles; he must hew down hedgerow-trees; he must destroy the game upon his land. In short, he must do everything to spend capital, without looking ahead to see how it shall be returned to him. This was described as the essential preparation for the coming competition. If he could not bear up against this, then he was told by the free-trader that "he had no wish to preserve that which cannot bear the healthy climate of pure com

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