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in their hands , and they so used it as to disgust and terrify the whole -world , even themselves . In the end they were glad , to denude themselves of power , and place themselves , for protection against themselves , under a despot ; -warrior .. For two-thirds of a century , conscious of their strength , they buffeted , with themselves and the world , and they have settled down under the very worst government of Europe . In despotism , operating by a minute bureaucracy , they have as complete a system as human ingenuity has yet devised for making the knowledge and will of one ignorant , corrupt self-seeker the only guide for the actions of the whole people . In France the democracy has obtained the very climax of bad government . .
¦ y ^ ^ p ^^ HP ^^^ iyiM ^ U ^ jy ^ y ^ Y ^ i * '' JTTl ^ ifr' T Pflfl' " lil I ^ TT ^ ifHFirJ-afl ^ i'l **^ r * TTTp ?*'^*"*^ T r ^ ^^^~^^ m wants by doing something for them . Why . should he also desire " to attain the same ends by enforced regulations ? lie makes laws to restrain his own freedom . This is .-irrational .. ' At the same time he does not really give up his freedom . He -retains it to his own enactments , and so far is a free man . He suffers the spirit of his old masters-, however , still to dominate over him , and his mind remains in servitude . Tlie reason , then , why democratic / government is a failure , is tlmt the democrats imitate the governments , established by despotisms , aristocracies , and bureaucracies .
The Act passed by Sir Benjamin Hall is an illustration , on a small scale , under our own eyes , of " what we have stated For a long i " * ^ several parishes of the metropolis had various different municipal regulations , and some of them had no-regulations at all . Sensible of many inconveniences , the people demanded municipal reform as a remedy , and the compliance with their demand was the proof that they had the power to enforce it . In fact , it was known they had the power , though they were ignorant of the best method of using it ; . and Sir Benjamin Hall acted in obedience to their ignorant wishes in introducing
and passing the Metropolitan Management Act . It was a law made for the people by their agents ; . at the same time , it was made according to the forms and on the principles of legislation established by the aristocracy for continuing the servitude of the people . Accordingly , instead of leaving the parishioners at liberty , as jwas pretended , to manage their own affairs , it prescribed very minutely how they should be managed , and imposed on the people ' the . duty-of carrying out their old masters' directions . It flattered them , indeed , by returning to them the semblance of the power it took from them . It made every
vestryman a legislator and an administrator to carry out the 'directions of the Act ¦ ¦ '; and as these were no . better than slaves-according to law , they all became willing and self-made slaves . They were delighted with the nominal power of freely acting under , the directions of the : old / aristocracy , and readily made themselves tlie instruments for annoyin" -, and even -torturing , their fellow parishioners and themselves . The / gave up the real power which they possessed individually and collectively , of regulating their own affairs—vyiiieh belongs to democracy—and accepted instead the will of Sir Benjamin Hall . His Act is the annihilation of
their freedom . By making every vestryman a party to carry it out , the corrective of an opposition , which renders' our mixed government a possibility , disappears . All the vestrymen are executive ministers ; but as they are engaged in other business , and can only now and then attend to the affairs of the parisli , really leaving the execution of all orders to their oflicial ? , it comes to pass that these , with the vestry-clerk at their head , are the real rulers of the parish . They are ministers , with the vestry for a council , which they guide , tincontrolled by an opposition of would-be ministers , which , in the House of Commons , helps the democracy to obtain or secure their rights .
Pretending to give the people self-government , the Act really imposes on them a very arbitrary rule , and confirms the slavery nnd disorder it wns nominally meant to cure . ' Finally , the result is , tho ' t , with a vast waste of time and money , nothing useful is done ; and circumlocution , going out from Westminster , embraces tlie Metropolitan Board of Works and all the vestriea of the metropolis , For free , resolute , prompt , active , discreet democracyalive only to facts , justice , and truth , acting according to circumstances' —there is substituted u body of regulations , framed in the spirit of an aristocracy , and actively carried out by a- beguiled democracy .
In the United States , since the establishment of their independence , the people have generally been prosperous and generally at peace ; but their success is not due to either the Federal Government or the separate Governments of the States . Without any exception , these are all corrupt and profligate . The public money is wasted on jobs and on scoundrels . The Legislation of the States and of the general . Congress- is below contempt
Every writer on their Government , and every European traveller in that country , every newspaper editor within it must be either a rogue or a tool , or the Government of the United States , notwithstanding the prosperity of the peoj > le , is a failure . It is the climax of corruption , and is continually expected to break asunder . People look even to despotism as a relief from , its expected anarchy . .
These examples establish the general fact that democratic Government is a failure ; and as we are all now , more or les ' s . j striving after democracy , as the course of events ^ interpre ted by the-most acute observers , assures us that democracy is to get and retain the upper hand , the inquiry why democracy has failed—why the multitude have , been unable to govern themselves , is of—universal interest . A just answer to the question may influence , modify , and guide the thoughts-and actions of mankind immediately , and for ages to come . It is now necessary , therefore , to take this subject into serious consideration . .
The answer seems obvious . Modern government had its origin in conquest , and its present character is derived directly from its origin . It is a means of keeping slaves , servants , and subjects in obedience . It begins by wrongfully and forcibly appropriating men and property , and is continued to maintain such an appropriation . For democracy to adopt the principles of the old governments of the world is to continue the wrong it feels and denounces . In every State in question , where democracy has failed , there have existed vast bodies of men in a condition of servitude or
slavery who were still to be kept in order . This is the source of the anarchy . The people want to be at once slaves and freemen . They strangle the liberty they desire should live . They are suicides . Democracy is perfect freedom . ; under it every man is equal and desires to' remain equal . To secure equality , the democrats set about chaining one another , and have no higher ambition than to imitate , the masters , whose rule they nominally reject . They continue slavery under another name or form . Each man aspires
to bo a law maker , and , like an aristocrat and a despot j to prescribe the conduct of others . Heal toleration is ^ accordingly unknown in democracies . Democracy is naturally opposed to aristocracy and despotism , and is a failure because it tries to frame and conduct governments on their principles and after their fashion . To unite fire and water would be less absurd than to form a democratic government—the union of freedom and slavery . It is synonymous to a round square , or any other irreconcilable contradiction .
Why oonquerors and the appropriators of other men ' s property should desire to enforce obedience on their slaves , so that they may enjoy their acquisitions in poaoe , needs no explanation . It is the logical consequence of the groat plunder . But what interest has a democracy in forging similar chains , or in maintaining them after they are forged P Why should democrats want to make others obey them P . Why fetter their . own free action by arbitrary rules P Why , in ignorance . lay down laws , which incrhaelng knowledge will continually compel them to break P The democrat SP £ * everv moment of his life to influence others by speaking to them , or obtaining -what he
times , he . promised to satisfy their desires . But he broke his promise , and so grossly aggravated the evils already existing in his states , that not a year passed , without the discovery of plots and the practice , of the most horrible" persecution . Durin «•' this period the most inveterate warfare was kept up against all innovation and progress ; against the establishment of railways , the proposa ? of a scientific congress , and the introduction of forei"ii books and journals , as well as against the press ° the kinsrdom . .
Modena was groaning beneath the yoke oi Franceso IV ., whose efforts against the liberal party from 1814 to the end of his reign are known to all—a modern Ezzellinus , minus the courage , lie for a long time represented in the centre of Europe , the political doctrines and dark crimes of the middle ages . The shameless widow- of Napoleon , in Parma , thought more of her affairs of gallantry than of the fate of the people . Louis Bourbon ' , expecting to succeed her by the treaties of Vienna , spent in the Austrian capital the gold forced from the Unhappy subjects of the Duchess .
The Grand Duke of luscany was the only prince agairist whom no reproach could be uttered But he possessed only limited powers of mind ; and , as an Austrian Arch-duke , could he satisfy the political wants of the tirues , and assume a hostile attitude towards the Court of Vienna—effect , in fact , the ruin of liis house ? Such was the state of affairs in Europe on the 14 ih of July , 1847 , when the writer of the present sketch presented himself to Ferdinand in the Palazzo
Reale , at Palermo , with a manuscript in his hand , which he begged the King to read for . himself , and act upon , without consulting any one . This manuscript , which was in circulation on the 16 th , having . been-clandestinely printed , bore the title of " Protest of the People of the two Sicilies . " "VYe subjoin a few passages from memory . " Foreigners who visit our ' . country admire tlie serenity of our sky and the fertility of our . fields . On -glancing at our code of laws , and hearing your ¦ Z \ jtajesty * s
Government speak of progress , religion , and civilisation , they might well believe that the Italians of the Two Sieihes enjoy a felicity to be envied by the other peoples . But , in truth , there is not a country in Europe whose state is worse than our ? , not even excepting Turkey . The Turks are , at least , ranked among the barbarous peoples ; they know that there is no other will for them than that of their master . Their religion teaches ihoiu to yield to a blind fatality , and , notwithstanding all , their condition is improving from day to day . But in the kingdom of the Two Sicilies , in the country which the world calls the garden of Europe , three out of four men die of hunger , and state than the brutes
the survivors are in a worse . Caprice alone makes the laws ; the vaunted progress consists in retrogression , and a Christian people is oppressed in the holy nanio ot Unist Oh , if each city , town , and village , whether of the AbruKJsi , of Puglia , of Calabrin , or of the . beautini and unfortunate Sicily , which gave both yourself and mo birth , could but recount , the . nwulta , Uio cruelty , and tyranny suffbi-od in person and in property ! But that which I urn about to tell you id sufficient to excite tenrs and trembling , a » iu to prove that the pretended ameliorations oi yoin Government arcs barefaced falsehoods employed to cover fresh and ingenious modes of oppression . bicUios
The Government of the Two —yum , u « - jesty ' s Government— -iri an immense pyramid wiiohc base is formed of birri and priests , whose summit is your Majesty . Each official , from tho ushej' * n tho minister , from tlie soldier to the general , from tho gendarme to the eommiHsary oi police , hohi the simple priest to the bishop , your Majesty . confessor , is a despot ; and while each tyranny over his subordinates , ho stoops and fawns to . w > superiors . Tho consequence i * that those wUo m not among tho oppressors aro hunted down on overy side by tho tyranny of a crowd o » mwi ; ra « ni * , and tho liberty , property , pcaco , and hfu » taoii , o honest ns depend tho cnnrico , not ui »
FERDINAND , KING OF NAPLES . NO . II . At the period to which we are referring , tho chair of St . Peter was occupied by Gregory XVI . whose reign must be numbered among the worst in tho annals of Italy and of the Papacy , Raised to the pontifical throne during the insurrectional movomont of 1831 , ho interfered in the Civil War and employed emissaries to excite the masses against tjtp popular government of Bologna . He then oxoommunicatcd tho patriots and violated the capitulation signed in his name , at Anconu , by his plenipotentiary ' , Cardinal Bonvonuti . Subsequently , being pressed tyy the five great Powers , of Europe to grant the reforms imperiously demanded by tno
perso upon prinoo or minister alone , but of tho . lowuut oiwloir 1—a courtier , a spy , a birro , a priest , or a Juuui . The Two Sicilies have , for tho pnat twenfy-aoM . years * been crushed by a government wliicn en j only bo characterised as hombly Htupiu inu oruol ; by a government which \\ m r ? lUlOl j « b to brutes 5 by a government winch is s > endured , perhaps , because God wills that wo slinii dosoend to tho lowest degree of nnacry— tho utteimost abasement-in order that , when fit . tho I « p »
k 698 THE : J [ il ^^
Leader (1850-1860), June 4, 1859, page 698, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/l/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2297/page/14/