« НазадПродовжити »
hood, as the basis of the government, and the soul of all its acts; a total abnegation, (renunciation or denial) in favor of the military Ruler, of all individual feeling, of all personal character, and almost of all private thought. The public functionaries universally, who perform the parts, and speak the language assigned them by their master, give up all moral liberty, and sacrifice totally and without reserve, truth, conviction, conscience, honor, and principle. When the senators, counsellors of state, or any of the chief dignitaries of the empire, speak, we know that they do of course but repeat the words of their master, and ply their trade with servility.” Again M. Faber says, “In France falsehood is proclaimed as truth under the warrant of every possible official form, and attested as such in the face of those, who know the fact to be otherwise. You find every public functionary asserting, before the universe, that, which he does not believe, and discarding all pretentions to good faith in the opinion of those, who are about him. Every day, every hour is marked by some gross falsehood, which, passing from mouth to mouth, begins at length to wear the guise of truth, in consequence of the unanimity, with which it is rehearsed.” He adds, "all the proceedings of their public functionaries, all their official papers, contradict their private convictions, and the opinions, which they are known secretly to entertain, and which most of them have heretofore openly and ostentatiously expressed.”
This author proceeds to give in detail many particulars of this most infernal system of iniquity, and falsehood. And for years he had every advantage to know this system; having the most intimate connexion with it.
To people of our habits, these things appear strange, if not utterly incredible. But the word of God positively and abundantly predicts the rise of just such a Power in the last days; rising from the bottomless pit, under the immediate agency of the father of lies; and the devil giving him his power and seat and great authority:-Being in covenant with death and at an agreement with hell, and under falsehood hiding them. selves; coceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood, so that truth is fallen in the streets and equity cannot enter. (See Isa. xxviii, 15, 17, 18, and lix, 13-15.) And with most incontestible evidence we are assured, that these things are exactly fulfilled in the French Empire; if not fulfilling in other places!
M. Faber remarks, that when we hear those, who pretend to be the organs of the people, eagerly and with every artifice of rhetoric, propagating the insidious falsehoods of their masters, "we feel the most lively sentiments of contempt and indignation.” “It is from this class of men (he adds) that the system of imposture receive its strongest support. Their baseness is infectious, and it contaminates the world. Their offi. cial testimonies, reechoed on all sides, and translated from language to language, every where tend to vitiate and pervert the public opinion.”
In this author we learn, that despotism imposes de. jection; and dejection silence. That its victims have no other consolation, than to mourn in secret. But that Bonaparte “has robbed his slaves of this last resource; and has not left them even the enjoyment of their own solitary reflections. He has pursued them to this their last retreat; and has forced them to break silence, and to celebrate without intermission, and against the dictates of their own conscience, the praises of their oppressor. He compels them to feign admiration and zeal for all his proceedings. The public functionaries are forced in their reports, to give those expressions, in glowing colors, of the public felicity, which crowd the columns of the Moniteur, (Bonaparte's official paper.) The miserable people are forcibly taught and made to speak that language of adulation, which is poured forth on every side. They are obliged to violate their consciences in celebrating the praises of their destroyer.
“To take and never to give; to demand contribuions of money and of men; but to grant no substantial favors, is the whole amount of the adıninistrative sci
ence in France.” Yet “when the French government takes, it affects to give, and makes a merit of it.”
The people, in a circular, were informed, that "his Majesty, who is incessantly occupied in consulting the bappiness of his people, has not failed to remark, the progress of industry and commerce and has thought it advisable to advance the interest of both, by enabling them to offer a new resource to the state." This outrage upon truth and insult upon their understandings, was contained in an introduction to the most oppressive and vexatious of all taxes, the droits ruinis, when the people were already crushed under the weight of taxes of every description, and commerce and industry were almost totally annihilated.
The following was added, which is here given as a specimen of French deception. “The spring, which commerce and all branches of industry is now tak. ing, requires a correspondent, or proportionate charge of the post-offices.
Nothing can be more just, than a small increase in the rates of postages, when the greater activity of business gives extent to correspondence. The tender solicitude, which his Majesty has uniformly displayed, in favor of commerce, and the encouragement, which he has always labored to give it, vouch for the justice of the measure now adopted.”.
This was from the man, who had said to a deputation of merchants from abroad, that he detested cominerce in all its parts; and who had done every thing in his power to destroy it.
"France now, (says this author) exhibits the extraordinary spectacle of a nation, in which not only is there no individual, who dares utter what he thinks; but in which almost every individual is habitually employed in circulating sentiments, which he knows to be false, "
The same spirit of intrigue and falsehood, the author informs, uniformly operates through France, and in their foreign countries. Their military despotism ireats with the same perfidy, and rapacious violence, their own cities, and their conquered cities abroad.
The same kind of insulting irony is offered to both, when stripping them of their property; telling them of their happiness under the care of him, who feels the most tender concern for their welfare; when they are writhing under the iron gripe of their merciless tyrant,
A part of a city was destroyed in the course of the war. Bonaparte passing through it, issued a decree, that it should be built at the public expense. The inhabitants were then instructed to eulogize him in the following language. “You know how to triumph in war; but your most satisfactory triumph is that of drying up the tears, which war causes to be shed. The sensibilities of your heart are co-extensive with your heroism. You have but to look upon ruins, and they cease to be such; they are instantaneously converted into asylums for the wretched." This was blazed abroad in the public papers. But not the least thing was ever done toward repairing the city. Passing it again, some years after, Bonaparte issued a second decree, "for accelerating the labors of the re-construction!!" The part of the city however continued in ruins, He had no revenues to spare for such a work. But his Moniteur again informed the public, of the lively joy and gratitude, which penetrated the hearts of those citizens toward the hero, who rebuilds their asylums!
This author observes, that he should never finish, if he undertook to narrate the instances, which daily oc? cur, of the fraud, cunning, hypocrisy, avarice, and rapacity, of the French government; and all under the mask of generosity and clemency. And not a soul, under all the insult, dares to open his inouth. “With respect to that kind of public opinion (he says) which consists in the free manifestation, by a people, of their real feelings and sentiments, there is not a gliminering of it in France.” The object of Bonaparte is, that none shall speak, or think, but in conformity to his object. Gazettes are employed for carrying his sys. tem into effect. “It is his object, that the kind of opinion, of which the Moniteur is now the representa. tive in France, should prevail throughout the world.” It is his object, that men shall every where speak alike,
in abject servility to him. “He has succeeded (says the writer) in establishing, throughout the greater part of Europe, the reign of terror."
The accounts, which this author gives of the conscription in France, is enough to rend a heart of stone. For parents to see their sons thus dragged to butchery, is a wretchedness, which exceeds all description. But it would exceed my limits to detail the particulars. “Here then (says M. Faber, after describing the conscription, and showing that men of all ages in France are soldiers at command) is the appalling spectacle of a whole nation, the most populous, enterprising and ambitious of Europe, formed into one military mass.-The levy en masse, attempted in the revolution, is now calmly and systematically orgavized, and grafted permanently on social institutions, industriously shaped, so, as to give it stability; and is made to embrace all conditions and all periods of life, from childhood to old age.
A whole people with all their resources, both physical and intellectual, is thus transformed into an in. strument of destruction. All France is, in the hands of Bonaparte, but an engine for the subjugation of the world; and one which he wields with the most arbitra. ry and absolute authority. So it is, by some incomprehensible fatality, that so great a part of the contibent of Europe is prostrate before an individual; who nevertheless, is held in universal execration."
Some other causes, which facilitate the spread of In
fidelity in our nation, considered. The American revolutionary war was on our part just and necessary. And the revolution, which gave the Americans a national existence, was among the great cvents of Providence, which were to prepare the way for the millennial glory of the Church. Yet such is human nature, that this event was attended with sad consequences to our morals. Antecedently to that war, and especially before the war of 1755, the people of this land, particularly of New England, were fa.