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in ke such an immense reduction in the militia, with a view of enabling the country to afford recruits for the regular army They insisted, particularly Lord Castlereagh, on whom the task of detail generally fell ; they constantly insisted, that their various measures of balloting and volunteering had not tended, and wonuld not tend, to increase the difficulties of raising men for general service. Where is the reader who does not recollect their repeated asseverations to this effect; their dashing statements of the number of men procured per month; and their insinuations as to the motives of those who were so hard-hearted as not to believe above one-half of what they said Nor were these notions, and assertions confined to the Noses: they were adopted by, if they did not proceed from, the very head to which those Noses are now attached, and which compels them to snuffle forth a different language. Mr. Pitt, as is stated in the speech of Mr. Elliot, declared that 100,000 men might be raised by ballot in GreatBritain alone, without any injury to the recruiting service of the regular army. “ said he" (in the debate of June 6, 1803, and in alluding to a speech of Mr. Windham) : “If I had to state here my objec“tion, it would not be that the militia was too “ much : I think that a militia to this ex“ tent" (including the supplementary militia, making for Great-Britain 73,000) “we * can bear. We know that we have raised “ 100,000 men by ballot. To the militia * may, too, I should think be added another “force for home service, or we shall not be “ in a state of security.” “ That he did not mean the men balloted to be compelled to serve in person is evident, and we now know, that, long before Great-Britain had raised one-half of the number of the 73,000 militia men, the recruiting service for the regulars was at a stand. In the debate of the 23d of June, Mr. Pitt followed inmediately after Mr. Elliot. He approved of the army of reserve project; and, as he himself observed in the opening of his speech, “it was rather unfortunate that he “ approved of it for precisely those reasons “ which Mr. Elliot had stated as the grounds * of his objection.” He took infinite pains to disfigure rather than to combat the opinions and arguments of Mr. Elliot. “Our “ first object,” said he, “ought to be that “ of defending ourselves, before we concur “ in the plans of those honourable gentle“men for inflicting vengeance for the ag
‘gressions and insults we have sustained. “If we are so romantic as to say, that the “ obtaining of a defensive force, which will “be sufficient to disappoint, the proud ex“ pectations of the enemy, is a consideration below our notice ; if to insure our safety against an enemy who has con“ quered, terrified, and oppressed one-half “ of Europe, be a task roo humble for us “ to stoop to ; if it is thought that we had “ better add to the list of his victims than “ stop short of any thing less than being en“ rolled as his conquerors; if gentlemen carried their heroism to that extent, they would certainly be justified in opposing “ this bill; but, I confess, such are not my “ sentiments.” “ It would have done the reader's heart good to have seen what delight this tirade of stately wit excited in the breasts of the stock-jobbers, who listen to it (I mean from the gillery), and who could scarcely refrain from chucking out loud. But, to men of common discernment and of any recollection it was evident that the whole tirade was inapplicable ; for, when did either Mr. Windham or Mr. Elliot talk of “inflicting vengeance for the aggressions “ and insults we had sustained 2'. Never. They never saw any measure likely to enable the country to attempt such an enterprise. Mr. Pitt, indeed, began his speeches in favour of the war by a lood cry for vengeance. One would have thought he had in view an immediate march to Paris. It is useless to refer to his speech, for every one must remember it, where he calls upon the nation to “repress the ambition and chas“ tise the insolence of the foe." Mr. Windham and Mr. Elliot had never thus broken out in untinely gasconade; nor had they, I repeat it, in any one instance, expressed sentiments bearing the least resemblance to those imputed to them by Mr. Pitt. When had either of then said, that to provide a force sufficient to secure us against the prond expectations of the enemy was “an object beneath our notice 2" When had they given utterance to any idea which could lead their hearers to suppose that they would be content with nothing short of seeing the country “enrolled as the conqueror of the ene: my " They uniformly stated their object to be security; but they insisted, that to provide for that security an efficient regular army was necessary, which army they said we could not have if we did not diminish the militia; and now, after an immen; useless expense, and a loss of time still
* Parl. Debates, Register, Vol. 11. P. 1835, - *
more important, Mr. Pitt, by his measures, confesses the correctness of their opinions, though he very carefully avoids making any such confession with his tongue. Upon the occasion here spoken of he defended and eulogised the militia system, and maintained, as in his former speech of June 9, that the 73,000 men in that service were not too many for Great-Britain, though the ministers, with his concurrence, and, indeed, at his instigation, were about to add thereto 40 000 bailoted men under the name of army of reserve. “I am,” said he, “not “ a little surprised, when I hear it gravely “ asserted, that the existence of a large mi“litia force” (the very force which he has now found it necessary to reduce in the proportion of one-third) “is incompatible
“with the existence of a large military
“ force, and destructive to the military spi“rit of the country. It is admitted even “ by those gentlemen" (Mr. Elliot and Mr. Windham) “ that this is a question of de“gree and, if it be admitted, that the mi“ litia to the extent of 30,000 men was “good in its kind, and if that force was “considered as necessary forty years ago, those honourable gentlemen must admit, that a much larger force is wanted now." Not to throw away time in commenting upon this curious logic I shall only beg the reader to remember that this speech was made after both the old and supplementary militia had been ordered to be raised, and at the time when the Parliament was about to pass a law, at the instigation of Mr. Pitt himself, for the purpose of adding 40,000 to the number of the balloted men already raised and intended to be raised. Yet this same gentleman, who was now so sarcastic upon those who feared that the militia was swelled beyond due bounds, comes to the Parliament, in less than a year after, and not only makes a proposition for reducing the militia by one-third part of its strength, but for abolishing the ballot altogether, and his reason is, that, with so large a balloted force, it is impossible to obtain recruits for the regular army; a truth which had been stated to him and to the Parliament a hundred times, and which he had, as often as he heard it uttered, positively denied. It is true, that, for the sake of the projët du jour, he seems to have abandoned his errors relative not only to the quantity but to the principle of the militia; but, the people have paid pretty dearly, both in their purses and their persons, for his long adherence to those errors. The expense to the parishes aud to individuals has been enormous; and, who can pretend to justify the waste, the
sport, that has been made of the zeal and exertions of the people of all ranks and degrees in providing the supplementary militia In some cases the supplementary men have been added to the establishment, making but one battalion for the county. Here the mortification and listlessness of the officers and the consequent indiscipline of the then may not be so great; but, where the supplementary men are formed into separate battalions, as is the case with Wiltshire, Surrey, and several other counties, and where those battalions are, by the law recently past, condemned to waste away till they have no longer any men belonging to them ; in such cases the indifference of the officers must be so great as to render the corps, in a very little time, perfectly useless. . The men of these corps will, doubtless, when they come to be very much reduced in numbers, be drafted into the first battalions of their respective counties. But, are the officers to be dismissed 2 Those belonging to the regular army may return to halfpay, indeed; but, what an ungrateful return is dismission, in the midst of war, to those country gentlemen who have come forward in the service of the country To sacrifice money foolishly is blameable, especially at a time like the present; but to lavish thus, to throw away, the zeal and the spirit of the country, in a species of prodigality which it is hardly possible to condemn in terms of adequate severity. And, what, I would be glad to know, is to be done with the noncommissioned officers belonging to these mouldering corps ? They must be kept up. They cannot be reduced merely because it has come athwart the mind of the minister to sentence their corps to a lingering death. They will, towards the last, have very few men to take care of; but, still they cannot, without the most flagrant injustice, be reduced in number, in any other way than by discharging them, a measure which will hardly be thought expedient. They must, then, go with the remains of their men, as supernumeraries, into the first battalions, which they will find already over-stocked. What confusion is here ! What wild, what crazy work, projects produce when conceived in the mind of a minister | Providence, in mercy to man, has generally made poverty a check upon projecting. When the latter happens to meet with opulence in a private individual it seldom fails to be productive of considerable unischief; what, then, must be its effect when preponderating, when always uppermost, in the mind of a ninister of state, and especially a minister who has thinty millions a year passing through his lands;
a minister of whom one half of the nation are the tenants and the other half the annuitants? An answer to this question will be readily given by any one who has observed the progress of our military measures for the Hast twelve months, and who contemplates our present situation when compared with the sacrifices and exertions that have been made by the people of every class and description. —The threat of an invasion of this kingdom, on the part of the French, and the expectation of it, on our part, have been in constant existence for more than a year. We have been all that time endeavouring to prepare for an effectual resistance, and for an attack upon the enemy, in case an opportunity should offer. What, then, have we done What progress have we made in this work, absolutely necessary to our existence 2 We have not, by all the various means that have been employed; by all the vumerous projects that have been, and that yet are on foot; we have not added to our army so many men as were taken from it by the reduction at the conclusion of the peace; we have not since the month of March, 1803, that is to say since the signal of war was given, and the militia was called out, we have not raised nearly 20,000 regular soldiers, which is about the number of cavalry and foreign troops that were disbanded in the year 1802, and some of them but a very few months previous to the time when we found it necessary again to begin the work of augmentation. At the end of fifteen months of military projects, we have in Great Britain about 30,000, I say thirty thousand, and no more, effective rank and file of the regular army, exclusive of Guards, Artillery, and Cavalry. From the field-of-battle estimate the Guards ought to be excluded; for, if they are employed there, other regular soldiers should be found to supply their place. Our Artillery are, proportionally, numerous, well appointed, and excellent in every respect; and, unless I am misinformed, great praise is due, in this respect, to Lord Chatham. But artillery, though they frequently begin, and have sometimes greatly contributed towards the deciding of a battle, are, without infantry, and without a due proportion of infantry too, nothing at all. The same may be said of horse. Without infantry there can, against an army of infantry, be no battle at all; and, accordingly, the first care of every general, and of every wise government, is, to provide a sufficiency of troops of this sort, in proportion to the numbers of whom the strength of an army is always *computed. Allowing the Guards to form part of the army for the field, and that their
place will be supplied by militia, we have about 40,000 regular infantry in Great Britain, and 20,000 in Ireland, while the recruiting for general service yields not more than 400 or 500 a month, which number, added to the men enlisted for general service out of the army of reserve, may, probably, amount to about 1,200 a month; and this supply, which is to be shared by the regiments in the East and West Indies, the Mediterranean, and all other parts abroad, will not be found more than half sufficient, perhaps, to fill up the vacancies occasioned by death, desertion, and discharges, many of which latter must take place every year, in spite of all regulation, because many men will annually become unfit for service. Let it be recollected, too, that I am stating the force as effective upon paper; and if my readers do not know the difference between a force upon paper and a force in the field, the Emperor Napoleon does. An army which consists of 40,000 of what are called effectives, seldom contains more than 35,000 fighting men. Admitting, however, that we have an army of 40,000 regular soldiers in Great Britain ready to take the field, what is it, when we consider the extent of coast that we have to defend ? It must be obvious to every one, that, if they are separated but a little, there will not be a handful in any one place. Next, then, comes the consideration of what degree of reliance can be reasonably placed in the militia. I should hope that, by this time, the militia were in a state of discipline to render them worthy of being relied on for a stout resistance. Still, however, they are not nearly equal to regular soldiers, and this will be denied by no one, who knows any thing of the matter, and who is not under the influence of selfishness or fear. They are not, and they never can be, equal to regular soldiers; and, however we may deceive ourselves with respect to them, we may rest assured, that we shall produce no deception in the mind of the enemy. Of the volunteers, “ that other “ great feature in our national defence," I would fain have said nothing, especially as the national utility of that body, regulated as it now is, has met with so full and able an exposition from the pen of a correspondent in page 128, to which I beg leave to refer the reader; but, a letter just received from Yorkshire contains matter, which it is my duty to make known to the public, and more especially to the minister, who, I trust, will lose no time in taking measures of precaution against the dangers, which, in of opinion, wear a more serious aspect in thi" quarter than in any other. The read"
need not be told, that a bill was lately brought into parliament to continue a law which had been passed in the last session, to
suspend an old law, inflicting penalties on
persons who should follow the clothing trade without having duly served an apprentice. ship to it. This suspension bill was disapproved of by the apprenticed clothiers, who made great exertions to prevent its being renewed in this session, and presented a petition for that purpose to the House of Commons. Nobody spoke in favour of the petition; the bill passed; and because Mr. Lascelles did not speak against the bill, he has incurred the marked displeasure of some, and those not inconsiderable in number, of the volunteers of Yorkshire, of which county, or rather, “little kingdom,” as Mr. Wilberforce called it, he is one of the representatives, his colleague being Mr. Wilberforce himself. The circumstances are thus stated by my correspondent. “The volun“teers in most, if not all, of the manufacturing villages in the neighbourhood of * Leeds, hung Mr. Lascelles in effigy, “dragged him about, and concluded by ibooting bim / With those very arms that were given them to protect the con. stitution, did these gallant volunteers, these patriot heroes, violate one of the chief privileges, the freedom of debate.
“If an armed mob, Sir, be allowed to ex
press their opinion of the propriety or impropriety of a member's conduct, and to shew their disapprobation by shooting him “in effigy, we are not far from the eve of a “revolution. From shooting in effigy the transition is not great to shooting in person, which was actually threatened in the present case.” This scandalous scene is said to have taken place very soon after these volunteers had returned from the performance of “permanent duty!" I do not pledge myself for the truth *i. statement : it comes to me in a letter by post; but, I have myself not the least doubt of the truth of it. It behoves the minister (I speak in the singular number because I “ do not count “ noses)" to obtain correct information upon this subject; and, if he finds it to be correct, to cause a striking example to be made of the offenders. Let him never forget the words of Paley: “to me it appears “doubtful whether any government can be “long secure, where the people are ac“quainted with the use of arms, and accus“tomed to resort to them. Every faction will “find itself at the head of an army; every “disgust will excite commotion, and every * commotion become a civil war.” We are not got to this state yet ; God forbid we
ever should ; but, of all our dangers, this, I continue to say, this is by sar the greatest. And, I am particularly anxious to guard the minister and the country against the consequences of the volunteer system, if scarcity like that of 1800 and 1801 should again come upon us. It will be useless for us to wring our hands and tear our hair when the calamity arrives. We ought, or rather the government ought, even at this time, to be devising precautions against the probable consequences of such a state of things. Mr. Wilberforce tells us to rely upon Providence, but Providence bids us make use of the means and the talents which it has bestowed upon us; and if we, through indolence or fear, disobey the command, what have we to expect but the fate of the sluggard and the coward —Such is the present state of our military means of defence; such the result of the measures which, since the peace of Amiens, government has adopted relative to the army. The object of these remarks, is, by shewing the people their dangers, particularly the danger arising from the want of a sufficient regular army, to induce them to use, every one according to his means, the utmost exertion, wherever they have it in their power, to favour the recruiting of that army. The present project of the minister must be excessively expensive to the country, as well as vexatious and oppressive to individuals; and, after all, I fear, it will prove lamentably inefficient; but, be this as
it may, it is our duty strictly to obey the law
that has enjoined the execution of that project; and not only to obey the law, but to give it all the aid in our power, and thus, by our loyalty, patriotism, zeal and activity, to make up, as far as we are able, for the negligence, the incapacity or the obstinacy of the ministers.
M R. Liv 1 N G sto N.E. The readers of the Register will recollect, that an opportunity was taken to disapprove of the conduct of Mr. Livingstone in the part he took relative to the correspondence of Mr. Drake; and, as was then expected, the most respeciable part of his country inen, those not slavishly devoted to France, have unequivocally joined in this disapprobation, as will appear from the following extracts made [rom the New York Evening Post of the 28th of May and 1st of June last. These extracts may, too, serve as an answer to a person who, in the Morning Chronicle, took up the desence of Mr. Livingstone some weeks ago. We have here a specimen of the sentiments entertained towards Mr. Livingstone in his native state and city, where, if any where, men will,
lation of Buonaparté should create great disgust in America is no wonder at all; but, the observations made by the American Editor, relative to the conduct and character of the British government, breathe a spirit of justice and of candour which does great honour to the person from whom the observations proceed, and which cannot fail to meet with the applause of every real friend of England and America.——“ Mr.
Livingston's letter.—It is impossible to refrain from making a few observations on the very singular letter of Mr. Chancellor Livingston to Talleyrand, as pub. lished in this evening's paper. We mean not to advance any sort of palliation for the conduct of Mr. Drake, the British Minister at Munich, allowing it to be correctly stated: but we think an ordinary share of discretion would have prevented the American ambassador, the minister of a neutral nation, from taking the part in this affair he has done. He undertakes to judge between the parties, although he has only heard one side, and to decide that the charge brought against the English minister, of having engaged in a plot to assassi, ate the First Consul, has been proved upon him. But it appears from Talleyrand's letter itsels, that Mr. Livingston had only seen printed copies of the letters of Mr. Drake; he therefore has not had even the possibility of detecting a forgery, if one has been committed. Perhaps his veneration and uncommon attachment to the First Consul, may have been so great as to render it impossible to entertain a suspicion of this sort, and yet his recollection might, without any very great difficulty, have supplied him with cases shewing the possibility of such a thing at no very
reat distance of time past. But allowing the papers of Mr. Drake to be genuine, what do they disclose On this subject it is certainly difficult for us, who have not seen them, to speak with confidence; but we will say, that from the character which we have heard of this gentleman, and from the character of his government, without whose knowledge and approbation he cannot be supposed to have acted, that when those papers shall be laid before the world, they will not be found to contain that unequivocal evidence of the facts charged, which might justify an impartial man in deciding upon the case and publishing his opinion without hesitation. But at any
rate, we have no difficulty in saying that
they will not, cannot, warrant Mr. Li
vingston in the lengths he has gone.
That Courts may employ ministers or
agents to reside on the borders of an enemy in time of war, that those agents may
employ spies to give information of what is going on in the enemy's country, and in short communicate to them every thing that can be of service, is a practice sanctioned by long usage; but that such agents should engage in a plot to assassinate the first Magistrate de facto, what. ever or whoever he may be, will not ad. mit of a justification; and therefore we repeat it, we cannot give credit to this charge brought against Mr. Drake by Talleyrand. But whether true or not, Mr. Livingston should have remembered that he represented a nation at peace with England as well as with France, and that propriety, good sense, and the laws of nations, required of him the strictest neutrality. That his letter is not neutral, but is a very wide departure from it, appears not only in the precipi. tate condemnation pronounced against the English minister, but in a still more explicit and exceptionable manner in the close of his letter. –It is not necessary that we should here enter into the merits of the controversy be: tween France and England : it is suffi. cient for our present purpose to state, that on the part of the English nation is is said that Buonaparté has entertained the project of universal empire, and that it is in the great cause of mankind that she contends single-handed against his mad and destructive ambition. “We think,' (say they) the situation of England a * proud one, contending single-handed, * for the liberty of the world against an ‘ ambitious usurper, who knows no law ‘ but conquest.' Now although as a nation we cannot know the First Consul to be an usurper, but in our intercourse. with him, are warranted by the law of nations, in regarding him, while in pos: session of power, as being in the lawful possession, yet surely we are not at li. berty to take the other side and congrs. tulate him upon his ‘noble labours in the field and in the cabinet." Besides, f Mr. Livingston has any ground for his apprehensions, that by his ‘loss’ the sale of the country may be materially affect. ed, ought not common prudence to have suggested a different language than what he has employed? Suppose what he ap: prehends should happen, that Buonapato