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perity of England - The Revolution of 1688, and successive Ad-
System of Parties-Recent Conduct of the House of Commons— The
Sinecure Pension Bill—The Grenville Sale-- Apostacy of Public
TEB 1 4 1912
On the Principles of Gooernment and the real Causes
of the Prosperity of England. That sagacious epicure, David Hume, remarked that all governments are founded on opinion ; a truth which no one can hardly deny. It is, indeed, obvious that, as in all
cases, the governors form a minority; the mere physical force of the community resides in the governed, and, consequently, that the former can only control the latter by opinion. Now this opinion may either be founded in truth or in error ; it may either originate in just notions of the utility of government or it may be bottomed in delusion.
Reason suggests, that the first alone should be the basis of public authority, but reason and practice seldom agree; and, accordingly, we find that mankind, for the most part, are kept in subjection by the aid of some gross error with which their Rulers have artfully enslaved their understandings. Thus, in the countries of the East, the chief engine of power is the impostures of Mahomet: by the aid of these the Turkish Sultan and his officers bowstring and plunder with impunity the inhabitants of the finest regions in the world.