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537 JOURNAL of the Proceedings and Debates

in the POLITICAL CLUB, continued from p.499. i jhall now give you a Debate que have any part of their principal paid

had in our Club upon the Reduction off, notwithstanding the low rate of of 2000 Men, made last Year in the interest they have now agreed to acNumber of Seamen employed in the

But this sacred fund, Navy * ; in which Debate the first meaning that we call the finking that spoke was Afranius Burrhus, fund, we ought as seldom as possible the Purport of whole Speech was as A to divert from that use, for which it follows.

was originally intended ; and no

man, I lappose, will say, that in Mr. President,

time of peace we ought to load our

landed gentlemen with more than S the motion I am to make two or three shillings in the pound. is, I know, a little unpo- The produce of the land and malt

pular in this country, I В tax is now so well known, Sir, that, I must beg leave to give you at full believe, I need not inform gentlemen, length the reasons that have induced that the former at 35. in the pound me to think of making it. Economy never brings into the Exchequer, clear is at all times as beneficial to a society, of all deductions, full 1,500,000l. as it is to a private family, but at and the latter seldom, if ever, above present, Sir, it will not only be be- 700,000l. therefore we ought to reneficial, but it is absolutely necessary C duce our annual publick expence withfor this nation. Under that heavy in 2,200,000l. or, if posible, within load of debt, which the expensive 1,700,000l. In these circumstances, wars we have been engaged in have I do not doubt but that many genbrought upon us, it is absolutely necef- tlemen have been turning their sary to contract every article of pub- thoughts towards æconomy; and erlick expence, as far as is confitent deavouring to fix upon those articles with our present security, and with D of publick expence upon which a the preservation of that tranquillity, saving may be made, without risking which we now so happily, and I that security we are now blessed withi may fay, unexpectedly enjoy. In Some of these gentlemen I have contime of peace, I believe no man will versed with, and all I have talked think of adding to the number of to upon the subject, join with me in our taxes, or of increasing any one opinion, that 8000 leamen will be of those we are now loaded with ; E fufficient for the service of the enand every one knows, that all our suing year; so that we may reduce taxes, except the land and malt, are 2000 of those we had last year in now mortgaged for railing the civil the publick service, which will be a list revenue, or for paying the in- saving of 104,000l. terest and principal of debts already Latt year, Sir, it was necessary to contracted. That, indeed, which have 10,000 for several reasons that is allotted for paying off and sinking F do not now exist, some of which I the principal of our debt, we may, shall beg leave to mention. In the now and then, in a case of necefity, first place, at the beginning of lait year make free with, because such is the it was to be apprehended that pirates publick credit of this kingdom, might appear in some of the distant that none of its creditors delire to parts of the ocean, as has generally December, 1751.

happened after a long war, when L-B

greas Ses London Magazine for Sept, loff, p. 410,

Y yy

538

PROCEEDINGS of the POLITICAL CLUB, &c. Dec. great numbers of feamen of all mari. ceffary in former times of peace, time nations are disbanded, and can- and I find, that with 8000 seamen not find employment in the merchant- we may keep as many and as good service ; and as this, had it happened, station ships, in the East and Westwould have very much disturbed our Indies, on the coast of Africa, and trade, it was necessary to keep some in che Mediterranean, as have usually ships in commission, that they might A been employed in a time of settled be ready to fail upon the first order, tranquillity, and yet may have always to intercept and deltroy those enemies 4000 at home, which would be fufof mankind ; but as none such have ficient for guarding our own coasts, yet appeared, we may reasonably and even for enabling us to fit out a conclude, that we shall not now be very powerful squadron upon any troubled with any fuch, and therefore sudden emergency, because here at it is unnecessary to keep any ships in B home, we may always, in a few readiness for such a service.

days, add double the number, in case In the next place, Sir, we had at it should by found necessary. the beginning of last year several In this opinion I am confirmed, more ships of war in the East-Indies, Sir, by considering, that in the year than we thall now have occasion for;

1725, we had bat 5800 seamen in and as those ships could not with any actual pay; and no gentleman can certainly be expected to return before C suppose, that all necessary services the end of the year, we were obliged were not then fully supplied, when to provide for them during the whole, I inform him, that the lord Berkein order to prevent the nation's run- ley, Sir John Norris, Sir Charles ning in debt, which ought always Wager, and Mr. Cockburn then to be avoided, if possible ; for, I sat at the admiralty board. If then think, it is much better, at the be- so small a number as 5800 was at ginning of every seslion, to have Dthat time sufficient for supplying all Jome publick money to dispose of, necessary services, can any one ima. than to have an account brought in gine, that 8050 will not now be sufof services incurred and not provided ficient for the same purpose? I know, for. In the third place, we were last I shall be told of the late great preyear obliged to have a good many parations of the French, and their ihips in the Mediterranean, on ac- diligent application to the increase count of disputes and contests we E of their marine ; and I confess, that then had with some of the nations of late we have been by our Gazettes bordering upon that sca; but as these pretty much amused with these acdisputes are all now accommodated counts; but those accounts are very in an amicable manner, or in a fair much exaggerated; for all they have way of being so, we shall next year done yet can hardly be called a re. have occasion for very few ships in storing of their marine, after what that part of the world.

Fit suffered in the late war, and there Thus, Sir, it is evident, that the is a very great difference between next year's service will not require building of ships and fitting them such a number of seamen, as was ne- out to sea. They must build yet a cessary during the last ; and as less long time before they can be upon than 10,000 (for we had but 9800 in an equal footing with us; and were actual pay) supplied all our occasions they now upon an equal footing with last year, I am persuaded, that 8000 G us, as to the numbers and rates of will be fully fufficient for the year hips, we have no occasion, to keep ensuing. Besides, I have taken all

a great number of seamen in actual possible pains to inform myself of pay, because it is known, that we the several services thought ne- can raise seamen, and fit out Tips,

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1751. PROCEEDINGS of the POLITICAL CLUB, &c. 539 faster than they ever could, or, I of. Economy must always be of hope, ever will be able to do. great service to ftates as well as

therefore hope, Sir, that by private families ; and I shall hearthese phantoms, which are dressed tily agree to its being absolutely neup by our news papers in order to cessary for us in our present distref. amuse their readers, gentlemen will fed circumstances ; for distressed I not allow themselves to be frightened A must call them, when it is of all into a greater expence than is neces- sides admitted, that we can hardly fary for the present service, especially support our government in time of as there is not the least appearance peace, without laying violent hands that France hias any immediate de. on that sacred treasure designed for sign of coming to a rupture with the discharge of our debts. But this nation. Gentlemen Mould upon however necessary æconomy may be this occasion reflect, that if in time B to us, I must be of opinion, thac of peace we keep up a greater number what the noble lord advises, would of seamen than we have any call for, be a beginning at the wrong end. it may disable as from keeping up, Initead of beginning we should end in cime of war, such a number as with, or rather at our navy ; for may then be absolutely necessary for we have already reduced our num. our safety at home, and the preser- ber of seamen more than we ought vation of our dominions in different C ever to do. At least, we should reparts of the world. This, cho'a distant duce every other article of expence, danger, ought to be a present dread : before we think of making any far. and will have great weight with ther reduction of that which is realevery one who confiders, that now. ly the palladium of this country, I in time of peace we must pay off a mean the number we have of brave considerable part of our present debt, and experienced seamen. Other otherwise we can expect no credit Dcountries may have as many ships as for carrying on any future war. we; and particularly France, if they This has with me a weight superior will be at the expence, may in a to every other consideration, and few years exceed us in number and will, I hope, be my excuse for ftrength of ships ; but lips of war, moving, That 8000 men only be without seamen, are like fortify'd employed in the sea service for this towns without garisons, only fit to current year.

E be taken or destroyed by an enemy:

and unless it be our own fault, nei. The next that spoke in this Debate ther France, nor any country in the

was C. Numisius, whose Speech whole world, can ever exceed us, was in Subfiance thus.

or equal us in number of brave and Mr. President,

experienced seamen.

This, Sir, is an advantage which

F we have from nature, not from our THAT the noble lord has been conduct ; for our late conduct has

pleased to say to us, seems been such, we have treated our sai. to me something like the fabulous lors in such a harsh manner, as if we Scylla, as described by Virgil, all designed to banish from our dominibeauty above, all deformity below;

ons every man that could pretend to and if what he proposes should be be a failor; and indeed, considering complied with, it will be as per-G our methods of pressing, our method nicious to our marine, as that mon- of paying them their wages, and our fter was to the marine of the an- method of turning them over from cients. His lordship set out with ship to ship, I am surprised that any a maxim, which I highly approve

of our common men ever enter into R- N

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