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Apply this another way. Their cheaper way, instead of laying out millions in making war upon you, will be to corrupt your senators. I know that if they be not above all price, they may make a sacrifice of our commercial interests. They may advise your president to make a treaty that will not only sacrifice all your commercial interests, but throw prostrate your bill of rights. Does he fear that their ships will outnumber ours on the ocean, or that nations, whose interests come in contrast with ours, in the progress of their guilt, will perpetrate the vilest expedients to exclude us from a participation in commercial advantages ? Does he advise us, in order to avoid this evil, to adopt a constitution, which will enable such nations to obtain their ends by the more easy mode of contaminating the principles of our senators? Sir, if our senators will not be corrupted, it will be because they will be good men; and not because the constitution provides against corruption; for there is no real check secured in it, and the most abandoned and profligate acts may with impunity be committed by them.

With respect to Maryland, what danger from thence? I know none. I have not heard of any hostility premeditated or committed. Nine tenths of the people have not heard of it. Those who are so happy as to be illumined, have not informed their fellow-citizens of it. I am so valiant as to say, that no danger can come from that source, sufficient to make me abandon my republican principles. The honorable gentleman ought to have recollected, that there were no tyrants in America, as there are in Europe: the citizens of republican borders are only terrible to tyrants : instead of being dangerous to one another, they mutually support one another's liberties. We might be confederated with the adopting states, without ratifying this system. No form of government renders a people more formidable. A confederacy of states joined together, becomes strong as the United Netherlands. The government of Holland, (execrated

as it is,) proves that the present confederation is adequate to every purpose of human association. There are seven provinces confederated together for a long time, containing numerous opulent cities and many of the finest ports in the world. The recollection of the situation of that country, would make me execrate monarchy. The singular felicity and success of that people, are unparalleled; freedom has done miracles there in reclaiming land from the ocean. It is the richest spot on the face of the globe. Have they no men or money? Have they no fleets or armies ? Have they no arts or sciences among them ? How did they repel the attacks of the greatest nations in the world? How have they acquired their amazing influence and power? Did they consolidate government, to effect these purposes as we do? No, sir, they have triumphed over every obstacle and difficulty, and have arrived at the summit of political felicity, and of uncommon opulence, by means of a confederacy; that very government which gentlemen affect to despise. They have, sir, avoided a consolidation as the greatest of evils. They have lately, it is true, made one advance to that fatal progression. This misfortune burst on thein by iniquity and artifice. That stadtholder, that executive magistrate, contrived it, in conjunction with other European nations. It was not the choice of the people. Was it owing to his energy that this happened? If two provinces have paid nothing, what have not the rest done? And have not these two provinces made other exertions ? Ought they to avoid this inconvenience, to have consolidated their different states, and have a ten miles square ? Compare that little spot, nurtured by liberty, with the fairest country in the world. Does not Holland possess a powerful navy and army, and a full treasury? They did not acquire these by debasing the principles and trampling on the rights of their citizens. Sir, they acquired these by their industry, economy, and by the freedom of their government. Their commerce is the

most extensive in Europe: their credit is unequalled; their felicity will be an eternal monument of the blessings of liberty; every nation in Europe is taught by them what they are, and what they ought to be. The contrast between those nations and this happy people, is the most splendid spectacle for republicans: the greatest cause of exultation and triumph to the sons of freedom. While other nations, precipitated by the rage of ambition or folly, have, in the pursuit of the most magnificent projects, rivetted the fetters of bondage on themselves and their descendants, these republicans have secured their political happiness and freedom. Where is there a nation to be compared to them? Where is there now, or where was there ever a nation, of so small a territory, and so few in number, so powerful, so wealthy, so happy? What is the cause of this superiority? Liberty, sir, the freedom of their government. Though they are now unhappily in some degree consolidated, yet they have my acclamations, when put in contrast with those millions of their fellow-men who lived and died slaves. The dangers of a consolidation ought to be guarded against in this country. I shall exert my poor talents to ward them off. Dangers are to be apprehended in whatever manner we proceed: but those of a consolidation are the most destructive. Let us leave no expedient untried to secure happiness; but whatever be our decision, I am consoled, if American liberty will remain entire, only for half a century; and I trust that mankind in general, and our posterity in particular, will be compensated for every anxiety we now feel.

Another gentleman tells us, that no inconvenience will result from the exercise of the power of taxation by the general government; that two shillings out of ten may be saved by the impost; and that four

shillings may be paid to the federal collector, and four to the state collector. A change of government will not pay money. If from the probable amount of the impost, you take the enormous and extravagant expenses, which

will certainly attend the support of this great consolidated government, I believe you will find no reduction of the public burdens by this new system. The splendid maintenance of the president and of the members of both houses; and the salaries and fees of the swarm of officers and dependants on the government, will cost this continent immense sums. Double sets of collectors will double the expense. To these are to be added oppressive excise-men and customhouse officers. Sir, the people have an hereditary hatred to custom-house officers. The experience of the mother country leads me to detest them.

They have introduced their baneful influence into the administration, and destroyed one of the most beautiful systems that ever the world saw. Our forefathers enjoyed liberty there, while that system was in its purity, but it is now contaminated by influence of every kind.

The style of the government, (we the people,) was introduced, perhaps, to recommend it to the people at large; to those citizens who are to be levelled and degraded to the lowest degree, who are likened to a herd, and who, by the operation of this blessed system, are to be transformed from respectable, independent citizens, to abject, dependent subjects or slaves. The honorable gentleman has anticipated what we are to be reduced to, by degradingly assimilating our citizens to a herd.

[Here Mr. Randolph rose, and declared that he did not use that word to excite any odium, but merely to convey the idea of a multitude.]

Mr. Henry replied, that it made a deep impression on his mind, and that he verily believed, that system would operate as he had said. [He then continued)I will exchange that abominable word for requisitions ; requisitions which gentlemen affect to despise, have nothing degrading in them. On this depends our political prosperity. I never will give up that darling word, requisitions; my country may give it up; a majority may wrest it from me, but I will never give it up

till my grave. Requisitions are attended with one singular advantage. They are attended by deliberation. They secure to the states the benefit of correcting oppressive errors. If our assembly thought requisitions erroneous, if they thought the demand was too great, they might at least supplicate Congress to reconsider, that it was a little too much. The power of direct taxation was called by the honorable gentleman the soul of the government: another gentleman called it the lungs of the government. We all agree, that it is the most important part of the body politic. If the power of raising money be necessary for the general government, it is no less so for the states. If money be the vitals of Congress, is it not precious for those individuals from whom it is to be taken? Must I give my soul, my lungs, to Congress ? Congress must have our souls; the state must have our souls. This is dishonorable and disgraceful. These two co-ordinate, interfering, unlimited powers of harassing the community, are unexampled-unprecedented in history: they are the visionary projects of modern politicians : tell me not of imaginary means, but of reality: this political solecism will never tend to the benefit of the community. It will be as oppressive in practice as it is absurd in theory. If you part from this, which the honorable gentleman tells you is the soul of Congress, you will be inevitably ruined. I tell you, they shall not have the soul of Virginia. They tell us, that one collector may collect the federal and state taxes. The general government being paramount to the state legislatures, if the sheriff is to collect for both—his right hand for the Congress, his left for the state—his right hand being paramount over the left, his collections will go to Congress. We will have the rest. Deficiences in collections will always operate against the states. Congress being the paramount, supreme power, must not be disappointed. Thus Congress will have an unlimited, unbounded command over the soul of this commonwealth. After satisfying their uncontrolled

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