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well to talk about the loyalty of the He believes himself to be justitoiling millions, their sincere regret that fied in all that he gave utterance the House of Lords should not be more
to, and we entirely agree with him. active, their wish to take part in electing the members of the House of Com.
Certainly no House of Commons mons, and the rest of it; but can any
likely to be chosen by the constitone who looks at facts doubt this broad uency which he calls into existtruth, that the result of the new Reform ence is likely to go farther than Bill will be that in fifty different ways the Houses elected under the measEngland will become, as far as legisla-ure of 1832 have done in reducing tion can effect that object, more of a
the Church to the condition of a poor man's and less of a rich man's country? Rich people, highly educated sect, and in forcing the House of people, refined people, will not have so Lords, nolentes volentes, to accept good a bargain of it as they have had and register its own proceedings. hitherto. Gentlemen, in a word, will And if there were any doubt on fall in the market, and will stand, if not our minds in regard to this matter, at a discount, at all events at a less the reasoning of the Times,' most enormously high premium than they unaccountably inconsistent in writhave stood at so far. Who cares really for the institutions of the country in ing down one day what it had themselves! What people do care for written up the day before, would are their effects, and their great effect remove it. The Times’ is frighthas been to make England the paradise ened out of its propriety by a vision of rich men and of those who are edu. of rampant Toryism henceforth cated with the views and feelings of rich prevailing. It sees in the exten
This will now be considerably sion of the suffrage to ratepaying changed. We do not say that the change is a bad one. Some of its effects householders in boroughs an enorwe hope will be good. It is one which mous increase to the Tory constitmust be regarded with mixed feelings. uency throughout England ; and At all events it is inevitable, and we is therefore urgent in the demand have invariably taken the course of ad- that in redistributing the seats mitting this, and of urging those who placed at their disposal by the were principally concerned to accept what they could not help, and make
success of Mr Laing's motion, the the best of it. They undoubtedly have Government should throw as much still excellent cards in their hands. As power as possible into the hands Mr Disraeli says, England is not Ameri- of the Whigs. And because the ca; and riches, education, and refine- Government has prepared a plan ment must be less valuable things than of redistribution which shall as they are usually supposed to be, if with nearly as can be compensate to the so many advantages on their side they cannot hold their own,
This is one
counties for the additional loss thing, but to deny the nature of the
which they sustain from the supchange itself is quite another. We can. pression of all boroughs not shownot understand how any sincere observering a population of 10,000 at the can take that course. The short result least, the Times' is exceedingly of the whole is, that the Tory Reform indignant. Bill leads straight to as much democracy as the social state of the country will
“ It was shown over and over again," permit of, and if the leaders of the Con. servative party had honestly said so
says the writer, “ that where in consefrom the first, the whole party would
quence of the existence of large numbers have revolted' against them. As it is, reach of all householders, the majority
of freemen the franchise was within the having cheated them into passing the of the Members returned were not mereBill, Mr Disraeli tries to hoodwink them ly Conservative but Tory:
This was as to its effects. He certainly is, as the especially, we may almost say invari. Marquis of Carabas said of Mr Vivian ably, the result where the boroughs were Grey, 'a clever man, a monstrous clever of moderate size. The enfranchising
clauses of the Bill now before Parlia.
ment will render what was the excepMr Disraeli can well afford to tion the rule, and the consequences treat lightly such criticism as this. which obtained in a few boroughs may
be anticipated in many. We are not Our readers must not forget how objecting to these enfranchising clauses this point was laid down in the as parts of a proper scheme. On the Bill as first brought forward. Comcontrary, when coupled with a fair plan of redistribution, they will place our pound householders were not to electoral system on a broad and stable come upon the roll of voters as footing. But,”-and so on.
such, but every facility was to be
afforded them of getting rid of What effect upon the state of this bar to the exercise of the parties the redistribution clause franchise ; and each, in claiming to in the Reform Bill is to produce, have his name on the rate-book, we shall all know by-and-by. was, after a certain date, to become Meanwhile, it is in the highest at once a personal ratepayer and a degree satisfactory to find that a voter. What an outrage !
!" handsome majority has supported claimed Mr Gladstone, “what an the Government in their proposi- insult to an honest man! between tion, and that Mr Laing's mad whom and the ratepayer direct scheme of three-cornered constitu- there is only this distinction—that encies and cumulative voting found whereas the latter satisfies the deno favour with the House of Com- mands of the parish-officer as often mons. But we must not, on that as called upon, the former saves account, withhold the expression the officer the trouble of calling by of our acknowledgments from the making his landlord his agent, and writer who carps at the Ministe- paying through him." The House rial plan, and admits, not without of Commons, however, could not some show of reluctance, that the quite see the matter through Mr great bulk of the people were always Gladstone's spectacles; and the with the Tories in the boroughs; and scheme, as Mr Disraeli laid it down, that, in bringing the franchise with- was on the eve of being accepted, in the reach of ratepaying house when Mr Hodgkinson suddenly holders generally, Mr Disraeli is at came forward with a proposal to do once acting up to the wishes of the away with the whole race of comcountry, and adding to the strength pound householders, and to make of his own party. After this he every man inhabiting a house at and we may equally afford to sit at once liable in his own person to ease under the obloquy which the rates, and eligible as a voter. Noangry exponents of Whig senti- body who heard the proposal could ment heap upon us. Meanwhile, be blind to the enormous extent of however, it is not a little diverting inconvenience which must attend to notice how grievously Mr Glad. its acceptance. There is scarcely a stone and the Opposition have em- parish in Great Britain in which barrassed themselves by the suc- householders are not to be found cess which attended one of the lat- from whom it is impossible to est of the many maneuvres through collect the rates; and in the which they hoped and expected to London parishes especially their embarrass the Government. The name is legion. Repeal the laws clause in the Reform Bill which which now permit landlords to comabolished altogether the compound pound with parishes for such rates, householder, and left him without and the inconvenience to which home or name in the common. parishes will be put can scarcely wealth, was not ours. Mr Hodg- be overestimated. But what cares kinson proposed, and Mr Gladstone Mr Gladstone for that? He saw eagerly supported it; the Govern- in Mr Hodgkinson's proposal a ment going only so far as to follow good opportunity of embarrassing in their wake, and to make the the Government, possibly of defeatbest of a difficulty for the creation ing their Bill, and he supported it of wbich they were not responsible. with all the weight of his eloquence
THE COMPOUND RATING DIFFICULTY.
and influence. He succeeded, and haps it would not meet political exigennow reaps his reward. The fol- cies. lowing account of what passed in
“Mr GLADSTONE said, for his own that drawing-room in Carlton Gar- part, he thought it was perfect folly to
make this Bill interfere in any way with dens which has during the last twelve months been the scene of the rates. If Parliament had taken care
any arrangements of the parishes about so many curious little dramas, is that the rates were paid he could have too good not to be quoted in full. understood it, but he could not underWe extract the narrative from stand the interference with the conven. the “Times' of the 12th of last ience of the public. He wished to say month:
that one party in the House had no views on the subject, and was not responsible in any degree for this inter
ference. He had deprecated it all along, “A deputation of vestry clerks, re. and had assented to it, as he would presentatives of the committee appointed assent to cut off his leg rather than lose by the various metropolitan parishes to
his life. The majority of the House consider and report what means can be had, however, agreed to it, and the quesadopted to avert the impending loss of tion was, Could a proposal be made to parochial rates through the passing of meet the views of the majority, and at Mr Hodgkinson's amendment to the the same time meet the difficulty ? Reform Bill, had a conference, by pre
“Mr GREENWELL said what would vious appointment, with Mr Gladstone, suit them was, that the rating of the at his private residence in Carlton House owner should be extended to cases where Terrace, on Monday afternoon. The houses were let furnished or for a less members of deputation were, Mr Green- term than one year, or where the annual well (Marylebone), Mr Mitchell (White. rent did not exceed £20. They did not chapel), Mr Layton (Islington), Mr wish to suggest anything which would Hopwood (Holborn), and Mr Southwell retard the passing of a Bill, or continue (Mile End Old Town).
an agitation which inflicted a serious “Mr GREENWELL, in addressing Mr loss upon the trade and commerce of the Gladstone, stated that the passing of Mr metropolis. Hodgkinson's amendment would cause “Mr GLADSTONE said had proposed the loss of an enormous amount of rates his mode, and it had been rejected. to the parish. That amendment was He proposed that a man should have a supported both by Mr Gladstone and the vote whether his landlord or himself Government, and as the injury which were rated. The House rejected that by would be inflicted upon the parishes a majority of 21. His object was to came principally from that side of the avoid interfering in any way with the House of which he was the leader, they collection of the rates. There was no had come to consult him as to what was doubt that a great deal of the composi. to be done under the circumstances. As tion arose out of the weekly tenancies, the measure was a Government one, they and it was perfectly absurd to propose had consulted the Poor-Law Board, that to ask a man who had a seven days' Board being the guardians of the rates holding under his landlord to pay a six of the metropolis, and unconnected with months' rate, so as to place him in relathe political aspect of the matter. The tion to the parish for six months, while subject had been inquired into at vari. he only had a holding for a week. He ous times by committees of the House did not think he could postpone the and the Poor-Law Commissioners, and subject, for that would interfere with they, by their reports, condemned the the political object of the House. There system of rating the occupier, as leading had been a great deal of idle talk and to great loss of rates, without any coun. jeering about the compound householder, terbalancing advantage being obtained. as if he were a chimpanzee or an ourang. The Small Tenements Act did not apply outang ; whereas three-fourths of the to places where there were local Acts, population were holding houses under and, therefore, had nothing to do with £10. Therefore, the legislation upon the metropolis, where local Acts were in this point was the Reform Bill. The force. The object of these Acts was real Reform Bill was not settled by any stated in the preambles. Their desire measure or motion until the passing was by some means to continue to rate of Mr Hodgkinson's amendment. The the owners instead of the occupiers, and House meant that the name of the occuthey had agreed upon a proposition pier should be on the rate-book, and which would meet their views, but per: that he should be under full legal lia.
bility for the payment of the rates. He could collect the rates easily, because Was it or was it not compatible with he must collect his rent. He was conthese two purposes of the House of vinced that before five years had passed Commons that they should make ar- they would return to the present system. rangements with the owners, either We are not such idiots as to incur incon. voluntarily or by enactment, which will venience for nothing at all; at present it enable you practically to collect the would be much better to ask Parliament rates from the owner ? There is no for power to make a voluntary rather doubt that it is almost a social necessity than a compulsory arrangement. that they should do so.
“ The conference continued for a con“Mr GREENWELL said they might put siderable period longer, the deputation both the owner and the occupier on the urging in objection to Mr Gladstone's rate-book, making both liable; but the proposal that great difficulty would arise objection to that on the part of the land. in settling the rate of remuneration to lord was, that he would have to pay the the landlords, as some would require rate for his tenant when that tenant per- more than others, and that the question haps ran away without paying his rent. of security where the arrangement was
** Mr GLADSTONE said that what he not compulsory would create a difficulty. meant was, that they might make such “MrGladstone replied that when once an arrangement by making an allowance a voluntary arrangement had been made to the laudlord as still to collect the rates the security would be as good as at prefrom him. Without any allowance being sent, and in conclusion he said, Any made the landlord pays the rates in a proposal for relieving the parishes of this large number of parishes, especially in difficulty shall, for my part, have every Liverpool. These places are not under prejudice in its favour. I cannot speak the Compounding Act or the Small Tene- more strongly than that.' ments Act, and yet the rates are obtained " The deputation, having promised to from the owner. Why should they not seriously entertain Mr Gladstone's pro. remunerate the owner and employ' him posal, and having thanked him for his as the collector ?
kindness, withdrew." “ Mr GREENWELL objected to this suggestion, that if the occupier were legally
The gist of this long conference responsible, the landlord would leave him is, that Mr Gladstone, feeling acuteto the mercy of the bailiff, and not pay ly the false position in which he the rate.
has placed himself, is at once un" Mr SOUTHWELL also objected that if willing to admit that he has done a tenant had paid his rent up, they could only distrain for an amount equal to one
wrong, and unable to apply a remweek's rent-say 5s.
edy to the wrong which he has com“Mr GLADSTONE said that under the mitted. He cannot deny that the Small Tenements Act they could distrain arrangement which he promoted is for the whole amount. The common both inconvenient and unjust, yet sense of the case is in the first place to he puts from him the responsibility consider whether you can make some by urging that nothing of the kind arrangement by law or not, without coming across the arrangement of the House
could have taken place had the of Commons—the entering of the name
House of Commons only allowed on the rate-book. There seems to be a
him to have his own way a year notion in the House that there is some ago.
“ He wished to say that, in sort of security for a man's virtue in his regard to this matter, he had deliability for a rate. The benefit offered precated it all along, and had asto the landlord was what has been very sented to it only as he would assent neatly termed a profitable contract.' In a large number of instances already to cut off his leg rather than lose the landlord voluntarily undertakes the
his life.” This is hardly fair, even payment of the rates, as in Liverpool, in conference with a deputation of without any allowancé. A man wishing vestry clerks. Mr Gladstone never to become a weekly tenant would look deprecated the repeal of the Rate ont for a place where he had only to pay Composition Acts. On the conhis week's rent. They wanted to avoid trary, he voted and spoke for it three things – the trouble of obtaining information, the danger of dealing with
as soon as a majority of twenty-one uncertain tenants, and the trouble of col. threw out his amendment on Mr lection. If they gained their object, why Disraeli's first proposal, that the should they not pay the landlord for it? Acts in question should remain in
force, while individuals were allow- proving of monopolies altogether, ed, by arrangement among them- they take the whole of the borough selves, practically to get rid of its householders of England into their provisions. In other words, Mr confidence. In like manner, the Gladstone, indignant that his views lodger, subject to conditions, of the would not be adopted by the Le- reasonableness of which he is gislature, lent all his influence to himself fully convinced, is to be pass a scheme by which all the admitted within the pale of the London parishes, and very many Constitution, from which the Whigs parishes out of London, will be would have excluded him. What put to serious inconvenience and say Mr Gladstone and Mr Bright loss. Such, however, is the man. to this? That a Government proHe cannot play a losing game. He fessing Tory principles is revoluhas no judgment to direct him in tionising the country—that it is the choice of positions to be taken carrying things far beyond the up for purposes rather of demon- point at which their greater prustration than of defence, and then dence would have stopped short, abandoned. Wherever be halts, and that the country and their there he turns round to fight, and, party are alike sacrificed to the fighting at a disadvantage, inflicts guilty ambition of one man! Let far more of loss upon his own them rave on. The party has no people than upon the enemy. The fault to find with its leader. They House of Commons, we suspect, suggested the very course on which regrets by this time that it did not he has entered, and they will supaccept in its simplicity the pro- port him to the end with the same posal which Mr Disraeli made to fidelity—the same determinationit. But it will certainly not repair which they exhibited at the outthe error then committed by giving set. And with respect to the counup, as Mr Gladstone seems to de- try, as it cannot see the danger sire, the principle that the house with which Liberals say that it is hold suffrage in boroughs shall be threatened, so it extends to the coincident with the payment of dangerous Minister from day to rates in one way or another. day an ever-increasing amount of
If the House of Commons be dis- confidence. The Government may posed to repent of some of the mis- yet have a contest or two to maintakes of which it has been guilty, tain, and partial losses to suffer. the people out of doors are day by Such has been the case in the matday receiving a stronger impression ter of the Durham University-a that the Tory Ministers are behar- point of very little moment; and ing as generously towards them, as more distressingly so in the refusal they are honestly and fairly re- of the House to sanction the use of deeming their own pledges. It is polling-papers at elections. This seen now, clearly enough, who they last failure is a misfortune. But really are that fear the people for the game of give-and-take all The Whigs were ready to give the parties were prepared ; and, having franchise to a class or section which succeeded in carrying so much, they had made it their business to Ministers need not grudge to their flatter, and therefore hoped to ca- rivals this one partial triumph, more jole. The Tories hold, that if the especially as it is hardly possible to line heretofore drawn is to be re- believe that the triumph will be a moved at all, it must not be re- lasting one. We venture to proplaced by any other. They decline phesy that, either at this very time to acknowledge the right of a seven- or a little later, the use of pollingpound householder to succeed to papers will yet be allowed in other that monopoly of power which the elections than those for the Uniten-pounder is losing; and, disap- versities of Oxford and Cambridge.