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names that commanded respect and making old Hendrick Hudson's river veneration in the famous, but doubt- sparkle like rubies; and, as the train ful, council of Peter Stuyvesant. I wheeled around the river bank near left Tarrytown as the sun was going Irvington, I took a farewell peep at down in the horizon. It presented a
Sunnyside, almost hidden by the cirbeautiful and grand sight, tipping the clet of trees. trees with a golden refulgence, and
THE ALLIANCE OF DEMOCRACY AND PROTECTION.
BY JOHN MACLEAN, TORONTO.
Trade has been fought out amongst us, and Parliament and people have decided to try what a National Policy will do for Canada. It may be interesting at this time to take a glance at the position of the trade question in other countries, and to inquire whether the present revival of Protectionism, the world over, be a mere surface phenomenon, soon to pass away, or whether it has its motive power in forces deep seated and enduring, and is therefore likely to be permanent and to govern the commercial future of the civilized world.
Of the fact that a great revival of Protectionism is now going on there can be no doubt ; indeed it is not disputed by those who certainly would dispute it if they could. An English journal of recent date puts into a few terse and pithy statements what every body is saying respecting the 'alarming' advance of Protectionist policy on the continent of Europe. Germany, declared to be England's boldest commercial enemy, is preparing for a policy of high custom-house walls, and is deliberately building up a tariff to keep out English goods. All this she is doing, too, under the lead of the strongest statesman in Europe, the 'man of blood and iron,' who has declared in favour of fostering home industries by keeping out the foreigner. The work that Cobden did in France is nearly undone, and the • liberal commercial régime' of Napoleon the Third is about to be stamped out. On all sides the spirit of Protection is manifest. Russia, Italy, Austria, Turkey and the minor States, are
looking to heavy duties either to repair their finances or for the avowed purpose of building up home manufactures. This general Protectionist agitation bodes dire evil to England, and meanwhile English statesmen fold their bands and, with impressive dignity, say that they can do nothing --that is, nothing beyond the usual course of diplomatic persuasion. Russia, being in deplorable straits for money, has a plea for high duties, which leaves Free Trade negotiators without an answer.
France had the same plea when she raised her duties to pay the German indemnity and other war debt, and she still retains it, and will use it to baffle the importunity of Free Traders from across the Channel. Other nations have the same contention at hand and ready
Austria, Italy, and Spain may all give their enormous and indifferently paid national debts as reasons why they must impose high duties. This is their convenient defence against diplomatic pressure from Eng. land; but underneath the forms of international politeness it is well understood, on both sides, that high duties are really sought for purposes of protection even more than for revenue. But it is in France that the chief danger to Free Trade is at present to be observed. She has made haste to denounce' all cummercial treaties by which she is now bound, and it is strongly suspected that, once free of these fetters to her action, she will be the reverse of hasteful in again putting herself under such restraint. The London Times, after viewing the alarming rise of Protection in Ger
many, under the auspices of Bismarck, of legislative powers belonging to the turns to France, and says that there representatives of the people, and holds the same signs of reaction meet the that no more such surrenders should
A general tariff of 'a re- henceforth be made. If Reciprocity trograde character' awaits discussion, be deemed desirable, then he would and the danger of France's going establish it by the concurrent legislaastray will be greater when she tion of two countries, but not by treaty. has cast off the fetters of commer- And he recently introduced pro forma cial treaties. The value of such in- and as a trial pattern merely of what ternational obligations to the Free might be done, a Bill providing for Trade cause is thus stated by the Reciprocity with Canada, with very Times : Inconsistent as treaties may low duties on manufactured goods, the appear to be with the creed of a free- same on both sides. How such a meatrader, who ought to trust that, like sure could be adopted while Canada truth, it will prevail against error, remains a part of the British Empire, they are useful mechanical devices by we do not see, and probably Mr. Cox which countries in danger of back- is looking quite another way in prosliding are kept in the right path and posing it. But his action in the matare saved from the influences of seduc- ter, and the prominence given, on both tive temporary delusions. They oper- sides of the Atlantic, to the doctrine ate very much as taking the pledge that commercial treaties are virtually does on a man of weak will. The fetters upon the commercial indepenend of the treaty with France may be dence of nations, abridging the legislathe beginning of much mischief.'
tive power of Parliaments, is a sign of With the close of the current year the times. In our own country Mr. nearly the whole system of European Tilley, with a statesmanlike undercommercial treaties falls in, and the standing of the signs, has taken the prospects for their renewal in the in- initiative towards substituting conterest of Free Trade are not bright. current legislation for the fetters of Here is an English opinion of the treaties. By a short section of the prospect :They (the French) are new Customs Act it is provided that now engaged, not in the reconstruction American natural products, the same of commercial treaties on the old lib- as under the old treaty, are to come eral lines, which all practical minds free into Canada, by Order-in-Council, approve, but in the preparation of a whenever it shall please our neighgeneral tariff which is to form the bours to admit similar articles free, basis for further international com- into the United States. No more mercial negotiations. This tariff, when Plenipotentiaries or Commissioners goready, will have to pass the Deputies' ing to Washington ; their occupation and the Senators' Chainbers; and it is forever gone, as far as commercial is calculated that it cannot obtain the treaty-making is concerned. When force of law before October. There our neighbours are ready for such Rewill remain, then, three months, when ciprocity as we approve of, they can most statesmen are enjoying the rest get it at once, by an Act of Congress and pleasures of the recess, to nego
in a dozen lines. Manufactured artiate the new treaties with the Great ticles are left out of standing offer, Powers.'
embodied in section 6, and so compliNor do commercial treaties seem to cations arising out of our colonial rebe in favour in the new world, any lations with Great Britain—that counmore than in the old. Mr. Cox, a try of many manufactures are wholly Democratic leader in the American avoided. Congress, proclaims the doctrine that Coleridge has somewhere said, that such treaties are virtually a surrender whereas with the ancient Romans war
was their business, in modern times business is war. Whatever convictions of the truth of this view he may have drawn from the circumstances of his day, a much stronger conviction of its truth is forced upon us by those of our own time. Then Protection was a mass of crudities, undi. gested and incoherent; now it is in course of development, with scientific aim and purpose, into a system of enlightened national selfishness. In vain are the arguments of Adam Smith, powerful as they were against certain absurdities prevailing in his time, invoked against Protection as it is shaping itself in ours. He denounced Protection of the few at the expense of the many, but what would he have said had he lived to see Protection demanded by the million, and resisted chiefly by a few learned doctrinaires and by the narrower interests of mere carrying, buying, and selling, as distinguished from the broader and more popular interests of actual production? We may properly say, 'the narrower interests,' for surely the actual production of commodities is something greater and more important than the mere business of their distribution, however important the latter may be. All Bastiat's verbal cleverness goes for nothing against the verdict of his countrymen ; he is answered by simply pointing to Protectionist France in 1879. Coleridge saw no pressure of competition in his time to match the tremenduous pressure now felt in all the leading avenues of trade. Therefore we say that his remark on commercial war has immensely greater force now than it had when he made it. It is the progress and development of international commercial war
now witnessing--the struggle of Governments to find work for their respective peoples. The war of sword and gun may abate ; subjects may gain wisdom enough to put their veto upon the game of kings and states
But the problem of work and bread for the people must remain, and
it must be a fortunate Government that can afford to give to foreigners the work and wages which its own people demand. Most certainly there is no Government of Continental Europe in such position to-day.
If we turn to America what better prospect do we see for the Free Trade cause? In the United States the Morrill tariff, established eighteen years ago, is still the law of the land; such amendments as have been made to it are conceived altogether in the spirit of Protection, with the design of ensuring the permanence of the system, and of strengthening it against attacks on exposed points. A vigorous denouncer of negro slavery has Mr. John Bright been, in his time, but to him, as a Free Trader, it should be a fact of ominous import that in the United States Slavery and Free Trade should have been twin pillars of the same edifice, and that with the fall of the former the latter also came to the ground. But for the Slave Power, indeed, the American people would have declared decisively for Protection long before they did, and the commercial event of Lincoln's time would have come in the time of Harrison or Tyler. That power was a weight lying upon the nation's will, and preventing its natural expression ; the weight being removed from the national councils, the popular will asserted itself at once. Vain is it to hope that any future Congress will reverse the verdict, or that the sharpwitted American people will after this deliberately legislate in favour of foreign producers. During these eighteen years Protection has struck its roots deep and wide in the United States, and now it has taken a grip of the country immensely stronger than ever it had before. Protection has caused mills, factories and workshops to start up and enlarge themselves ; these, again, have bred a numerous working population, living by manufactures ; this population constitutes a voting power, and will vote
to sustain that by which it lives. In would willingly break a lance for Free a word, Protection has bred Protec- Trade, full well do they understand tionist votes, and these Protectionist | that the masses of the people, belong. votes will perpetuate Protection. It ing to their own party, will follow used to be the old story, that Protec- them in no such Quixotic assault. tion lived only within its strongholds Democratic leaders have on this quesin New England and Pennsylvania, tion to step carefully, for fear of their and that with the growth and expan- | being deserted by the multitude, and sion of the great West, which had no left high and dry, without popular supinterest in manufactures, an port. They may present platform rewhelming majority of the whole nation
solutions having a Free Trade sound, in favour of Free Trade would certain- and they may even labour hard, in ly follow.
But this view has been the Committee of Ways and Means, remarkably falsified by the event. It to show that duties which are now was based upon the assumption that sustained at the dizzy height of sixty the great West would continue to have
or seventy per cent., might advanno interest in manufactures ; but just tageously be reduced to thirty-five or here the Free Trade prophets turned forty per cent. But mass meetings out to be all wrong. The Morrill of Democratic voters, coming grimy tariff caused manufactures to spread and dusty from their crowded workwestward, and now the West as well shops, have warned Democratic leaders as the East contributes its material that, though Free Trade talk may be guarantee for the continuation of safe enough, popular rebellion waits Protection. Another New England upon any actual legislation that would is now rising up west of Lake Michi- substitute foreign goods largely for gan, and other Pennsylvanias are be- those of home production, and throw ing developed in Ohio, Indiana, and American workmen idle. Missouri. The Appalachian Mountain The alliance of Protection with region, in the South, as well as that Democracy is a great fact of the day, other part of the same chain, called and points clearly to what the nation. the Alleghanies, in the North, boasts al commercial policy of the future of its metallic treasures; and Georgia must be. Nobody expects now to see competes with Massachusetts in the
Monarchy or Aristocracy gaining on spinning of cotton yarn. Protection, Democracy in the world ; the most before deemed to be a growth of the devoted Tory that lives understands East only, has now spread its roots that political power is passing into the westward to the Mississippi, and, in- hands of the multitude. Philosophic stead of being relaxed, its hold upon students of history advise us not to the whole country is every year be- brace ourselves stupidly against the coming scronger.
Not a few manu- inevitable, but by the extension of facturers merely, but millions of popular education, and other fitting working people, who have votes, are means, to qualify the people for the interested in its continuance. The power they are destined to wield. But gain by the Democrats of a majority in if the multitude take to Protection, Congress, for the first time since the what future can we see for Free Trade outbreak of the war, has raised again in the world? Let Republican France the old hopes in the breasts of some, and Republican America answer; and, who fancy that the party will surely if that be not enough, look at the adfollow up its traditions of former days, vance of Protection in Canada and and attempt the gigantic task of un- Australia, under virtual Democracy doing the Protectionist legislation of tempered by Imperial connection. It the Republicans. But, though there has been charged against Sir John A. are some Democratic statesmen who Macdonald that he is not a sincere