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second *— the small proprietor, in the third — and the planter, in the last. +
“No man,” says Mr. Mill, "made the land." Neither did any man make the bricks of which the mill is composed, or the iron used in constructing its machinery. All of these existed in the days of the Heptarchy, and all were equally valueless. All have present value, the reward of human effort. The property in all, stands on the same basis — all being governed by the same laws. Property in land is, however, held to be less sacred than that in stocks of cotton, cloth, and corn; and for the plain reason, that the whole system tends towards the extension of trade at the cost of commerce - to the conversion of a whole people into traders, at the cost of that greatest of all human pursuits, a scientific agriculture.
War among nations, and discord among individuals, grow with the growth of monopoly in land. The more perfect its consolidation, the greater must be the inequalities of society, and the more must those who labor be made to suffer, in the distribution effected between the people and the State.
* Few facts recorded in history, are more instructive than those afforded by that of Scotland in the present century, placed side by side with those of Northern Europe. Throughout a large portion of Northern Britain, tenants have been ousted from their little holdings, and under circumstances of the greatest hardship. Throughout Germany, Denmark, and Russia, the little tenants have been converted into small proprietors. Examine the British system where we may, we find it tending towards the annihilation of the middle classes--creating everywhere a body of large proprietors, landed and moneyed, mining and manufacturing, side by side with a people that must become more servile from year to year..
† The act of emancipation was held by the British people to be an act of duty; and, being so, its cost should have been borne by all. As it was, the value of land was destroyed, and the proprietors were ruined — these results having been consequent upon violations of well-understood agreements: the first of which was contracted when the slaves were allowed to be imported, and the second, when they were emancipated. In all the recent transactions between the British people and their colonies, might has made right.
THE SAME SUBJECT CONTINUED.
III.- The People and the State.
§ 1. From the moment when Crusoe discovered that he had neighbors, who were poorer, even, than himself, he lived in constant fear of his life. Friday, however, having joined him, he felt that his security was increased — the one being free to watch, while the other slept, or labored. So has it been, and so is it now, in all the early settlements of the world. Compelled to provide for their security, the early people of Greece and Italy placed all their towns on the tops of hills. a course of proceeding to which they would have thus been led, even had they possessed the power to cultivate the fertile soils of the valleys, capable of yielding thrice the return to labor. So was it, in Southern England - almost every hill-top there presenting, even now, the evidences of early occupation.-So was it, with the Puritans of Massachusetts, and with the Cavaliers of Virginia; so is it, now, with the settlers of Kansas and Oregon — every man being compelled to prepare himself for self-defence. The systematic and regular application of labor, to the work of obtaining command over the great natural forces, having, therefore, no existence, the potential energy of man remains latenthe, himself, continuing poor, because of the absence of power for combination with his fellow-men.
Friday's arrival exercised upon Crusoe's condition, a double influence - greatly increasing its effectiveness, when applied, and enabling him more continuously to apply it. His wants and his powers being here, as everywhere, a constant quantity, every increase of the latter was attended with an enlargement of his proportions.- the resistance of nature to his further efforts dimi. nishing as his powers of attack increased. So is it, in all new Bettlements – security growing in a ratio far exceeding that of numbers — and being obtained in return for contributions of time and mind, or the produce of both, constantly diminishing in the proportion borne by them to the quantity of things produced. Seeking proof of this, the reader may turn to Greece in the days of Solon — comparing it with the Greece of Homer; to the Germany of Tacitus, as compared with the countries embraced in the German Customs-Union; to Gaul of the days of Cæsar, as compared with France of the present day; to Massachusetts of the seventeenth century, as compared with that of the nineteenth; to the land of William Penn, a century since, when scattered settlers were liable, at any moment, to attacks from savage tribes, with the Pennsylvania of the present; or, to Kentucky, of the days of Daniel Boone, as compared with those of Henry Clay. Look where he may, he will find evidence that the course of man towards security, wealth, happiness, and civilization, is represented by the diagram already more than once submitted for his consideration : here again reproduced, in evidence of the universality of the law which there is represented.
On the left, there is no security—the law of force, alone, being recognised. The weak of arm, or of sex, is there the slave of those who have physical strength, to be taxed at a master's pleasure. Passing towards the right, we find employments becoming gradually more and more diversified, and individuality becoming more and more developed. The power of association and combination, therefore, steadily increases, until, at length, on arriving in Massachusetts, we find ourselves in the midst of a community enjoying a higher degree of security, and giving, in exchange for it, a smaller proportion of the products of labor, than in any other country of the world.
Passing upwards, through English history, we obtain results exactly corresponding with those obtained in passing from the less populous countries, to those more fully peopled, of the present day. The men of early England, harassed alternately by Danes and Saxons, enjoyed even less security than did those of Norman England, in the days of the first and second Henries. From the time of the Edwards, to that of James I., there was no security in the northern and western counties. Elsewhere, the wars of the Roses, and the execution of 72,000 persons in a single reign, bear their testimony to the almost total absence of security in the enjoyment of the rights of person and of property. The reign of Elizabeth exhibits to us, a series of depredations upon the people of the coast, by Algerine and other pirates. The close of Scottish wars is followed by civil war; yet, great as is the waste of human energies, we trace, through all these facts, a growing steadiness in the movements of society, consequent upon increase in the proportions borne by land and labor, and diminution in those of the class deriving its support from the contributions of the men who owned the land, and those by whom it was tilled.
Here, as everywhere, we have evidence, that the highest test of advancing civilization is to be found in the approximation of the prices of raw materials and finished products — the former rising, as the latter fall. With each successive step in that direction, men are more enabled to combine together for the maintenance and extension of their own, and their neighbors', rights obtaining more perfect security at diminished cost, and being thus enabled to give their labor more continuously to production; wbile accumulating, with increased rapidity, the machinery by means of which their efforts may be made effective.*
Wealth consists in the power to command the services of nature. The more that power, the greater is the tendency to its equal distribution, and towards having every member of society stand forth a Man, in the presence of his fellow-men.
$ 2. In the early ages of society, the contributions required for the maintenance of security, bear, as we see, a large proportion to the property of the persons of whom the community is composed. Whence, however, are they taken ? Whence can they come? Of fixed property there is none — the little capital there is, consisting of cattle, hogs, corn, slaves, and other movable commodities and things. Hence it is, that, at this period, we find the lord exercising his power over the application of labor and its proceeds—stopping the circulation of society, that he may be enabled to claim the lion's share of the services, or things, to be exchanged. At times, he requires personal service on the farm : at others, on the road, or in the field. At one moment, he stops the corn on the road to the mill : at another, the meal on its way to the oven : at a third, the wool on its road to the clothier : at a fourth, the cloth on its way to the people who desire to wear it. At one time, he calls in heavy gold and silver coins — paying for them in others that are light: at another, he repudiates the light - compelling his subjects to purchase of him those which are heavy, and thus pilfering that which, openly, he dares not take.
* In the social world, as in the physical one, motion tends, thus, to constant acceleration-attraction increasing, as resistance diminishes.
Wealth and population, however, increasing, and employments becoming more and more diversified, the proportion borne by movable to fixed property, tends steadily to decrease — land and labor acquiring value, as commodities lose it, and men becoming free, as their masters become enriched. The power of interference now steadily declines — the mill and oven monopolies passing away, and lords and masters being more and more required to look to fixed property as the source of rerenue. The slave now becomes a tenant — contracting with the land-owner for the payment of a fixed and certain rent for the use of land, to be received in full discharge of the variable and uncertain demands for personal service, thus far made. The tenant, too, becomes a freeman-contracting with his sovereign for the payment of a certain fixed sum, and thus freeing himself from interference with the exchanges he may wish to make with his fellow-men.
§ 3. That the course of affairs should, in all advancing communities, be such as is above described, will be obvious to the reader on an examination of the foregoing diagram - the space occupied by property in motion being a constantly contracting one, and that of the land, and the man by whom it is cultivated, being a constantly enlarging one. With the contraction of the