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      Quebec, immediately after his arrival, as related by

      Lord North, however, was still sufficiently impressed by the solemn warnings of Chatham and others to attempt a conciliatory measure of his own. Accordingly, on the 20th of February, only ten days after his Bill restrictive of the American trade, and whilst it was progressing, he moved in a committee of the whole House, "That if the Legislature of any of the American provinces should propose to make some provision for the common defence, and also for the civil government of that province, and if such proposal shall be approved of by the king and Parliament, it would be proper to forbear, whilst such provision lasted, from levying or proposing any tax, duty, or assessment within the said province."


      In the meantime, Mr. Peel had, in the previous month, communicated with the Duke of Wellington, and intimated his wish to retire from the Cabinet, and from the leadership of the House of Commons, in consequence of his being in the minority upon a question which, of all others, most deeply affected the condition and prospects of Ireland, with the government of which he was charged as Home Secretary. The Duke of Wellington's sentiments did not differ from his as to the embarrassment that must arise from divided counsels in the Cabinet. The Duke also acted upon the earnest advice of Mr. Peel not to take a course which would preclude an early settlement of the question. In the debate on Lord Lansdowne's motion, on the 9th of June, that the Lords should concur in the resolution passed by the House of Commons, the Duke and Lord Chancellor Lyndhurst took part in the debate, and, though they did not concur in the resolution, which was rejected by a majority of 44, the general tenor of their speeches and of those of the bishops led Lord Lansdowne to observe, in reply, that he thought the noble lord on the woolsack and the noble duke must have had the intention of conceding the Catholic claims, for no one knew better than they did the danger of holding out expectations which could not be realised. The Session of 1828 was closed by a Speech from the Throne on the 28th of July. As only three weeks of the Session had to elapse after the Clare election, Mr. O'Connell did not offer to take his seat, preferring to make the most of the "M.P." in the work of agitation till the meeting of Parliament in the spring. And, besides, he was probably aware that he would have no opportunity of making a speech. If he appeared, the Speaker would desire him to take the oaths required by law; and if he declined, he would treat him as a stranger and intruder, and listen to nothing he had to say. He could not be summoned to the House, and compelled to attend, because he was not returned at a general election; and it was thought better to let him enjoy his senatorial honours unmolested for six months, than to enter, at the close of the Session, into an irritating and protracted contest.Whence arose this difference, and other differences equally striking, between the rival colonies? It is easy to ascribe them to a difference of political and religious institutions; but the explanation does not cover the ground. The institutions of New England were utterly inapplicable to the population of New France, and the attempt to apply them would have wrought nothing but mischief. There are no political panaceas, except in the imagination of political quacks. To each degree and each variety of public development there are corresponding institutions, best answering the public needs; and what is meat to one is poison to another. Freedom is for those who are fit for it. The rest will lose it, or turn it to corruption. Church and state were right in exercising authority over a people which had not learned the first rudiments of self-government. Their fault was not that they exercised authority, but that they exercised too much of it, and, instead of weaning the child to go alone, kept him in perpetual leading-strings, making him, if possible, more and more dependent, and less and less fit for freedom.

      of rations"I recommend you to take into your early consideration whether the principles on which you have acted may not with advantage be yet more extensively applied; and whether it may not be in your power, after a careful review of the existing[521] duties upon many articles, the produce or manufacture of other countries, to make such further reductions and remissions as may tend to ensure the continuance of the great benefits to which I have adverted, and, by enlarging our commercial intercourse, to strengthen the bonds of amity with foreign Powers."

      adds: Lon dit, et il est vrai, que dans ces temps si


      "What has passed in regard to the coureurs de bois is entirely contrary to my orders; and I cannot receive in excuse for it your allegation that it is the intendant who countenances them by the trade he carries on, for I perceive clearly that the fault is your own. As I see that you often turn the orders that I give you against the very object for which they are given, beware not to do so on this occasion. I shall hold you answerable for bringing the disorder of the coureurs de bois to an end throughout Canada; and this you will easily succeed in doing, if you make a proper use of my authority. Take care not to persuade yourself that what I write to you comes from the ill 59 offices of the intendant. It results from what I fully know from every thing which reaches me from Canada, proving but too well what you are doing there. The bishop, the ecclesiastics, the Jesuit fathers, the Supreme Council, and, in a word, everybody, complain of you; but I am willing to believe that you will change your conduct, and act with the moderation necessary for the good of the colony." [20]


      An error, not less common than it is contrary to the object of societythat is, to the consciousness of personal securityis leaving a magistrate to be the arbitrary executor of the laws, free at his pleasure to imprison a citizen, to deprive a personal enemy of his liberty on frivolous pretexts, or to leave a friend unpunished in spite of the strongest proofs of his guilt. Imprisonment is a punishment which, unlike every other, must of necessity precede the declaration of guilt; but this distinctive character does not deprive it of the other essential of punishment, namely, that the law alone shall determine the cases under which it shall be merited. It is for the law, therefore, to point out the amount of evidence of a crime which shall justify the detention of the accused, and his subjection to examination and punishment. For such detention there may be sufficient proofs in common[133] report, in a mans flight, in a non-judicial confession, or in the confession of an accomplice; in a mans threats against or constant enmity with the person injured; in all the facts of the crime, and similar indications. But these proofs should be determined by the laws, not by the judges, whose decisions, when they are not particular applications of a general maxim in a public code, are always adverse to political liberty. The more that punishments are mitigated, that misery and hunger are banished from prisons, that pity and mercy are admitted within their iron doors, and are set above the inexorable and hardened ministers of justice, the slighter will be the evidences of guilt requisite for the legal detention of the suspected.