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* One forty-fifth part of such income, if | question now before us, the right hon. the same shall amount to 951. but shall be gentleman seems to expect either support under 1001.
or silence from this side of the House. « One fortieth part of such income, if the To this I answer, that he cannot expect same shall amount to 1001. but shall be under 1051.
support; he can hardly expect silence; « One thirty-eighth part of such income, if because, having opposed the assessed the same shall amount to 1051. but shall be taxes, it would be strange if I were silent under 1101.
upon a measure, which is, in my opinion, “ One thirty-sixth part of such income, if infinitely more destructive, even than that the same shall amount to 1101. but shall be destructive measure. I must consider, under 1151.
Sir, what the effect is of this House agree “ One thirty-fourth part of such income, if ing to any principle laid down by that the same shall amount to 1151. but shall be
gentleman. This House under 120l.
“ One thirty-second part of such income, if agreed last year to the principle laid the same shall amount to 1201. but shall be down by him in his assessed taxes, but under 1251.
the House had not then the idea of going « One thirtieth part of such income, if the the length which he now proposes ; they same shall amount to 125l. but shall be un- thought the whole measure had better der 1301.
have been abandoned altogether, than « One twenty-eighth part of such income, that it should cause the disclosure of the if the same shall amount to 130l, but shall be condition of every person in the kingdom. under 135l.
But now the minister, having got the “ One twenty-sixth part of such income, if the same shall amount to 1351. but shall be House to recognize the principle, goes a under 1401.
step farther, and proposes that the House “ One twenty-fourth part of such income, should follow him. That proposition the if the same shall amount to 1401. but shall be committee have now before them, and I will under 1451.
venture to assert, that even he, confident “ One twenty-second part of such income,
as he was in the majority that has always if the same shall amount to 1451. but shall supported him, would not have ventured be under 1501. « One twentieth part of such income, if the the monstrous proposition which is now
last year, to have laid before this House same shall amount to 1501. but shall be un
But he der 1551.
“ You need not “ One nineteenth part of such income, if
make any disclosure of your
condition in the same shall amount to 155l. but shall be life.” What! If the disclosure I make under 1601.
be not satisfactory, has not the commis“ One eighteenth part of such income, if sioner power to increase the duty on me the same shall amount to 1601. but shall be at his discretion ? and are not all these nnder 1651. « One seventeenth part of such income, if of an infamous informer To such a pro
proceedings to depend upon the evidence the same shall amount to 165d. but shall be position I cannot assent. But that is not under 1701.
“ One sixteenth part of such income, if the all; for if this House agrees to that prosame shall amount to 1701. but shall be un- position now,
is it too much to say upon der 1751.
experience, if this tax does not come up " One fifteenth part of such income, if the to the system, a general disclosure of all same shall amount to 1751. but shall be un property must take place, and that too in der 1801.
the course of the very next year ? This “ One fourteenth part of such income, if measure puts a tenth of the property of the same shall amount to 1801. but shall be England in a state of requisition-a meaunder 1851.
" One thirteenth part of such income, if sure which the French have followed, in the same shall amount to 1851. but shall be their career of revolutionary rapine, and under 1901.
which the chancellor of the exchequer *« One twelfth part of such income, if the has, with all his eloquence, justly branded same shall amount to 1901. but shall be un- with the hardest epithets. I do not think der 1951.
qur finances in a state so desperate as to “ One eleventh part of such income, if the justify this plan of indiscriminate rapine ; same shall amount to 1951. but shall be un- | for such in my opinion it is. The thing is der 2001.
“ And one-tenth part of such income, if the in its nature unjust. Does the minister same shall amount to 2001. or upwards."
mean to say, that a person possessing an
income for life of a certain sum, and anoMr. Tierney said :-Upon the great ther person of the same income which he derives from the interest of his own capi- cellor of the exchequer, upon the utital can equally bear the same taxes ? | lity of his plan, and the protection it is Certainly not; the thing is too palpable to afford to property; which is, that under to be argued; and yet by this plan of it, the whole property of England will making income the standard of wealth, these soon shift hands. I know, that to a dry two persons will be made to pay alike. financier, that is matter of no concern; it But the minister gets over all these as is, to him, of no moment to whom the minor objections. He says boldly, “ there property belongs, provided it produces a must be some injustice after all; and the given suni to the revenue, but there are only thing that can be done is, to take others who will see indescribable mischief care that the injustice shall be as little as arising out of it, and will feel it too. The possible, that he has brought it as near to great mass of the property of the country justice as he can." To which I answer, may change owners in the course of six, that
may be his best method of bringing seven, eight, or nine years. That will measures before us, but it is not such as I make a great difference in the state of the ought to vote for. Besides, the event country iiself; for, if the rich man in the may happen which he has anticipated, city buys the small estates of a number namely, a choice between this measure of gentlemen (which will be one of the and utter destruction. But we should, in operations of this plan), although the my opinion, resist such measures until we estate will be the same, and the revenue are in such a state, for nothing but such the same, yet the condition of whole disan alternative cap justify such an adoption. tricts of inhabitants will be materially alAt all events, I must have it in my power tered. When a gentleman of small forto say to my constituents before I adopt tune sells his estate, let him get ever so this, that every other resource has been ex- much for it, there are evils arising from hausted. Now, I cannot say that, for there that sale to some parts of his family, are others yet untouched which ought to which are never to be avoided, nor adego before this measure is resorted to. quately described. This is a point which, There are many valuable things under the although it may be beyond the comprechurch establishment, not in the smallest hension of some monied men, well worthy degree beneficial to religion, but which the attention of this House. only swell out the pomp and pride and
The Resolutions were agreed to. imaginary greatness of some inflated individuals which ought to be brought in Dec. 4. On the report of the commit. aid of the public burthens. The corpora- tee being brought up, tions also are liable in the same manner. Mr. Hobhouse said, that between the This tax is said to fall nearly equally on evil of persevering longer in the funding all sorts of property. That is not true. system, and the evil of the present atIt does not fall on the property of a cer- tempt to raise a great part of the supplies tain description of stockholders, or wbat within the year, he could not well balance may be called the leading London gentle his mind ; if, therefore, he had not other men. These gentlemen can pay off any grounds for rejecting the present measure, tax without burthening themselves; in- he should feel himself at a loss to decide deed, the greater the taxes are, the richer what vote he should give. Those grounds they become. The chancellor of the ex- it was now his duty to state.
He hoped chequer says, that this plan will occasion he might be allowed to inquire, what the funds to rise ; so that if any gentle would be the effect of making either exman possesses 20,0001. in the funds, his penditure, income, or property, the basis fortune may iinprove by this duty. If of taxation. If expenditure be made the you rise the stock, for instance, 2 per cent, criterion, then the avaricious capitalist he will make a large sum of money by would not pay his due proportion, but the his capital; so that, instead of taxing weight would fall on him who, in consethese gentlemen, you will increase their quence of having spent more than he fortunes, while you ruin others. Whereas could well afford, was least liable to supyour plan, to be worth any thing, should port it. If income be taken as the test, compel the monied men to take, at least, then the tax would operate with glaring their share of the public burthens. But inequality. The man who had an income there is another point to be considered, of 1,0001. per annum arising from capital, and it will soon turn out to be an and the man who gained the same annual answer to the declaration of the chan. sum by a profession or by, business, surely
ought not to be assessed in the same de- , of the public faith to the stockholder, be. gree. If two merchants had each 1,0001. cause he did not view it in that light. a year from their commerce, they ought Undoubtedly there was a clause in all the not to be taxed alike; because the one loan acts, securing to the public creditor might be obliged to apply a greater pro- his dividends “ free from all taxes, portion of his income than the other, to charges and impositions whatever.” But ihe repair of buildings or machinery. If from the moment the money had found property only be taxed, it might be its way into the pocket of the stockholder, argued, that those who had the greatest from that moment it became liable to property might not have the greatest in- taxation. Neither had he insisted upon come; and that the necessary expendi- another case, namely, that all persons ture of two persons who had equal pro- from 2001. per annum and upwards should perty might be very different. On these pay a tenth part. Surely it was flagrantly grounds he could not bring himself to be unjust to take 10 per cent from the man lieve that either property, income, or ex.
who possessed but 2001. per annum, wbile penditure, should solely and exclusively be, who rioted in the enjoyment of be taxed. Such a basis of taxation would, 40,0001. yearly income, paid no more. in his opinion, be highly unjustifiable. As to the productiveness of this new fiThe most unexceptionable one that could nancial project, he would not hesitate to be laid, ought to be formed out of a com- say, that it was calculated, in some rebination of the three. The individual spects, to bring in more than the late act should be rated according to the property for augmenting the assessed taxes. he possessed, the income it produced, and The Resolutions were agreed to, and a the degree of expenditure, which his si- Bill was ordered to be brought in theretuation in life, the size of his family, or
upon. other considerations might demand. - Besides this objection to a tax upon income, Debate on Mr. Tierney's Motion reshe had others extremely strong and for pecting Peace with the French Republic.] cible. It was a tax which would strike Dec. 11. Mr. Tierney rose to make his prowith peculiar force at industry and the mised motion, and said :—When I look at fruits of industry, while indolence was left the situation of our affairs at this moment, untouched and encouraged. And what and compare it with that which it exhimust be the natural consequence of this bited some time since, and when I couple discouragement of industry? Does it not that situation with declarations from a tend to relax those springs which give variety of quarters, I am impelled, Sir, to life and activity to every branch of trade, make the motion with which I shall concommerce, agriculture, &c.? The mer- clude. I am led to think that the pacific chant is accustomed annually to convert a disposition which, soon after the conpart of his profits into capital. If the tax- ferences at Lisle, was manifested in his gatherers call for a portion of those profits, majesty's declaration, has been abandoned, he must devote less to the increase of his and that a new spirit has begun to rise reproductive stock. Thus the progress up, against which I must enter my proof our trade would be obstructed. There test. The spirit I allude to is that which was a passage in Steuart's Political Eco- leads to an extensive continental connomy so appropriate that he would read nexion. I know it may be said, that this it : “ As to the pure profits on trade: al- motion breaks in upon the undoubted though they appear to be income, yet I power which the crown has of making consider them rather as stock, and there- war or peace; but I think this is a point fore they ought not to be taxed. They which will not be much insisted upon when resemble the annual shoots of a tree it is considered that the power of this which augment the mass of it; but are House is unquestionable with respect to very different from the seed, or fruit which granting supplies. I have, as a member is annually produced, and is annually se- of this House, as good a right to say, that parated from it.”. These shoots the mi. the supplies granted to the crown shall be nister was now lopping, and thus the granted exclusively for England, as to growth of the tree would be checked; a say, what no man doubts I have a right few years hence he would probably cut to say, that there shall not be any supply. down the tree, that he might the more But it may be said, that this motion has easily lay his hand upon the fruit.-He a tendency to damp the spirit which is bad not stated this tax to be a violation now rising in Europe. If that spirit was
rising, and was likely to animate all excited, and would not such an effect be
confederacy formed, than she did forBut it may be said, “ although this merly? Can we have more confidence in spirit does not yet appear every where, either of them after we have been deserted yet your motion ought not to be made, by both? Will any gentleman say that we for it may prevent that spirit from being ought to vote larger supplies than any that
have yet been voted, for the purpose of pose that you will succeed by this new adjusting this or that point which may be confederacy in any one thing that will be long to the left or the right side of the of the least service to this country? I Rhine? Can any man say that these are should be glad to see France driven to her points essential to the welfare of Great former limits; I should be glad to see Britaio ? Can any of the powers expect her renounce her principles of ambition, much from the co•operation of Russia ? and thirst for extent of territory. But Can the Emperor expect much cordial sup can you really believe, that, after having port from those who have deserted him al- got Mantua, Luxemburgh, and other ready? can we look with any degree of hope places, she is more easily to be driven from the decisive and prompt action of within her ancient limits then she was bethe Ottoman Porte? Will any man lay his fore she made these acquisitions ? Or will hand upon his heart and say, that any of any man say, that this object is to be acthe combinations I have stated can be of complished without a great evil happening real service to Great Britain ? Well; but to this country; in short, without such the question is altered, and other nations consequences to our finances as the most now feel what their interests are better sanguine calculator cannot look upon withthan they did formerly. Those who re- out dismay? Where is your line of deflect on the tenor of the manifestoes of marcation to be drawn? But although 1793 and 1794, will do the parties com- you are not to be the conquerors of France, bined against France the justice to say, but are only to reduce her to her antient that whatever they may have failed in, limits, do not think that other powers will they did not fail in foretelling the enor- go on with you, even in that object ; they mities of France. Nothing that has hap- will not aid and assist you in restoring to pened could have astonished the confede. each other what has been lost ; the conferate powers, for they predicted all the deracy, if it be formed, would dissolve evils that have happened in consequence long before that object could be accomof the anarchy of France; nor did they plished. But, if you could accomplish fail to ascribe all the evils that have have that object, I am sure you may neverthehappened to French principles. And less adopt my motion ; for there is nohere it is proper I should explain what I thing in it hostile to that idea—there is mean by French principles. Some gen- not a syllable which goes to prevent the tlemen call all desire for a parliamentary powers of Europe from joining against or other reform, the result of French France; but instead of our endeavouring principles : with such men I cannot agree to extend the confederacy, we should But as to those French principles which leave them to apply to us. You say, you have produced, and are supporting the will bring about the deliverance of Europe. present tyranny of France, no man would Do not say so: you cannot accomplish it; rejoice more heartily at their extinction, and I wish you not to make so extravagant But can any thing be done to inflame the an attempt. resentment of these persons more than has Another point that may be urged is, been done by the French republic? Can that my motion tends to prevent others any thing be done to excite deeper hatred from showing their principles, and that it in monarchy against French principles tends to decide upon the aggressions of than the conduct held towards that mo. the enemy towards other powers; by which parch? Can the nobility of any country means, it may stand in the way of the ashave greater anger against any thing than sertion of those rights, which lead to hothey have against that conduct which nourable terms of peace for this country, abolished their whole order at once, and This appears strong at first sight; but if I worked the destruction of their titles ? did not conc there was an answer to Would any thing make the prayers of the it, you would not have had the trouble of church more fervent against anarchy than hearing me this day, for I would not urge the overthrowing altogether of all church a single argument that could tend to imestablishment? Could any thing more en- pede honourable terms to this country. rage the lords of manors, and such per- Ministers put into his majesty's -mouth, sons, than the total extinction of feudal after the breaking up of the conferences rights? These are the men who once at Lisle, words that are tantamount to the united against France; and it is from an spirit of my motion. His majesty there union of these again that you look for says, that “ he looks with anxious expecte the deliverance of Europe. Can you sup- ) ation to the moment when the government