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marking the extreme reaction against the doctrine of State rights, resulting from the war, but can hardly be regarded as furnishing a sound basis of opinion for students. But Professor Pomeroy writes expressly for the use of college students, whose needs he understands from experience his views are decided, but not extreme; and he has the power of presenting them in terse and forcible language, so that the student will feel at every step that he is in contact with a mind of masculine grasp and thorough training.
We have said that Mr. Pomeroy's views are just and moderate; and yet, on the great question of nationality, we do not altogether agree with him. His view may be briefly stated as follows: that the Declaration of Independence was a national act, — the colonies acting as a unit; and that subsequently, by a sort of usurpation, the several States possessed themselves of a factitious sovereignty, so that the establishment of a national government by the adoption of the Federal Constitution in 1787, was simply a return to the original status of 1776.
This theory appears to us rather as a device to escape from an unpalatable alternative, than a natural inference from the acknowledged facts in the case. Mr. Pomeroy says, p. 39, "Grant that in the beginning the several States were, in any true sense, independent sovereignties, and I see no escape from the extreme positions reached by Mr. Calhoun." But no proof is offered of the necessity of this conclusion, except the inherent right belonging to every independent nationality, "of supreme, continued self-existence." This right, he adds, "can only be destroyed by overwhelming opposing force; it cannot be permanently parted with by any constitution, treaty, league, or bargain." But surely this is begging the point at issue. Why cannot a State surrender its sovereignty by merging it into another? This is what the several United States appear to have done; but as this again is the point in dispute, we do not see at any rate how it can be denied that Scotland did it in the union with England. Even Mr. Pomeroy admits that the States exercised sovereignty under the Confederation, and parted with it under the Constitution; it appears to us that the State which exercises sovereignty, is sovereign to all intents and purposes.
To our mind a great part of the difficulty in this question arises
ROY, LL.D., Dean of the Law School, and GRISWOLD, Professor of Political Science in the University of New York; author of "An Introduction to Municipal Law." New York: published by Hurd & Houghton, Cambridge, Riverside Press, 1868. 8vo. pp. 549.
from a desire to find in the acts and expressions of that epoch as clear notions of the nature of the government framed as we possess at the present day, a notion which the men of that time had neither the leisure nor the disposition to form. They were making history, not criticising it; creating institutions, not defining them. They do not appear to have attempted any distinct statement of the nature of the new government. They did not look at the question as lawyers, who must reduce every thing to rule and precedent, but as statesmen who had a particular work to do, and set themselves about it without concerning themselves much with definitions. They even took pains to leave the written document, which was the only form of constitution which it was possible for them to adopt, as free to expand and develop as was possible in the nature of things.
Even if they had desired to reduce every thing to precise formula, it would have been impossible, situated as they were. At every moment of time, action was the one indispensable thing, and upon modes of action they could agree tolerably well; but there was no time when their abstract views were not so at variance with each other that any attempt to bring them to absolute uniformity must have resulted in destroying what unity there was.
The first steps towards resistance and independence seem without doubt to have been taken by the individual colonies; but when the Continental Congress was once established, it is true that it assumed extraordinary powers, and exercised almost absolute authority through the first years of the war. It unquestionably overstepped the strict limit of its delegated powers, and we see no reason why this should not be branded as usurpation, as well as the later powers of the Confederation; but it was a usurpation rendered necessary by the exigencies of the time. The Declaration of Independence was made, as Mr. Pomeroy says, while these high sovereign powers were in the hands of the Congress; but he omits to say, what we believe to have been the case, that the power of Congress itself was derived from the action of the individual colonies, acting together by agreement and concert of understanding, not as under any central authority. As we hold with our author in regard to the practical recognition of State rights under the Confederation, it is not necessary to follow him here. On the formation of the Constitution in 1787 again, we agree with him that a genuinely national government was the result; but while he believes that this was the resumption of a suspended sovereignty, we believe that the sovereign States actually surrendered their sovereign
ty, and merged it in that of the new government. Of course we can offer no argument for this except the facts themselves as admitted by both. The sovereignty was actually possessed by the States in 1787, and in 1789 had passed into the possession of the new government; seeing that this act was, in all appearance, a real transfer of sovereignty, we submit that the burden of proof is against those who deny that such a transfer could take place, and that it is incumbent on them to bring forward some more cogent argument than a mere assertion that it could not. The doctrine that the apparent sovereignty of the States was a sham, is merely an inference from this unproved assertion.
In these arguments, as well as in his strictures upon Austin's views in regard to the sovereignty in the United States, Professor Pomeroy appears to us to make the mistake of insisting upon a theoretical definition of sovereignty, rather than accepting it as a fact wherever it exists; as Austin, for instance, in speaking of the relation of Frederick the Great to the Imperial Government, remarks in support of his sovereignty: "Being in a habit of thrashing its armies, he was not in a habit of submission to his seeming feudal superior." (Vol. i. p. 212.) It is the bane of our American discussions of political science, that they almost universally base themselves on theoretical and natural rights, rather than on facts as they exist. In the case under discussion, we hold that the sovereignty was actually transferred more than once during the transition from the colonial to the federal government. Mr. Pomeroy holds that it was in abeyance during a considerable portion of this time.
To return to the Convention of 1787, it is very clear to one who attentively considers the relations of parties, that it was not possible to define the new government with any precision, and that those must be disappointed who go to that instrument for unqualified support of either one theory or another. Both Mr. Calhoun and Mr.Webster had to be satisfied with inferences and probable argument, and so has Mr. Pomeroy; and, for the matter of that, so have we ourselves. And the reason is, that any thing more definite would have split the Convention, and left the country worse off than it was before. Its members were too wise to be willing to sacrifice the thing for a name.
There were two opposite parties in this Convention. One, headed by Luther Martin, wished to retain the Confederacy with little alteration; the other, led by Hamilton, would have liked to form a complete consolidation of all the States into one nation: the majority of the
members probably occupied middle ground between these two extremes. Of course, neither party had its way. A compromise was made which instituted practically the kind of government that was needed, but left questions of definition to be settled when they came up. The term nation was left in abeyance, but the thing was brought into life. An end was put to the interregnum or transition of sovereignty, and the various powers and functions of government were enumerated and organized. The practical result was accomplished, — a result on the whole satisfactory to the majority, although perhaps not satisfactory in every particular to any one. But any attempt to say, in so many words, either that the new government was a nation, or that it was a mere confederacy, would have inevitably led to the failure of the whole scheme. They called it, what it certainly was, a Federal Union; and left it for time and circumstances to determine its precise character.
It is at any rate apparent to any one who reads the debates in the conventions, that the Constitution was regarded as establishing a new government of the whole people, and was opposed on that ground. Luther Martin refused to sign the document for the reason that "the people at large" had no right to form such an instrument. It is further clear that the powers conferred upon the general government are sovereign in their nature; and that by this act the loose congeries of States was transformed into a vigorous nation, capable of maintaining its dignity and credit, both towards its own citizens and towards foreign nations. The founders of our government were wise. They laid a foundation upon which they trusted that a firm government must be built; and their hopes have not been deceived. The fine-spun subtleties of Calhoun have ever failed to convince the people of the United States that they are not a nation; nor do we believe with Mr. Pomeroy that our nationality depends on so weak a basis as the impossibility of a voluntary alienation of sovereignty.
W. F. A.
PHILOSOPHY AND SCIENCE.
IF Letourneau's "Physiology of the Passions" * does not prove any new theory of emotion and sentiment, it certainly classifies facts very carefully and reasons upon them ingeniously. The book is admirably arranged, and is interesting and fascinating from beginning to end.
Physiologie des Passions. Par CH. LETOURNEAU. Paris: Germer Baillière, 1868. 18mo, pp. 230.
How far Letourneau is a materialist, we do not know; for his reasoning is quite consistent with a belief in spiritual substance and in personal immortality. He agrees with the materialists in rejecting the psychological method of studying the soul, and longs for the day when metaphysics shall die." If the voices of scientific men could decide the question, metaphysics would seem to be already as good as dead, sent to the shades along with other follies and delusions, -alchemy, witchcraft, demoniac possession, and the rest. Metaphysics is now forced to excuse itself for asking a hearing, and has to take the humble tone of a suppliant. A few brave Hegelians continue to raise their voices, but these are only the voices of drowning men, who swim here and there in the vast abyss. Physiology now must demonstrate the soul, if its existence is to be allowed and justified.
Letourneau's work is in five books. The first treats of Life and of Needs, and lays out the plan of the subsequent books. He divides the needs of man into three classes, nutritive needs of circulation, of digestion, of respiration; sensitive needs, those that bring pleas ure, as the generative impulse, and the exercise of the special senses, seeing, hearing, tasting, and the like; and cerebral needs, which are moral and intellectual. The moral needs diminish as years go on, and are far more pressing in youth than in age, and in the soul of woman than in the soul of man. Religious needs are classed as cerebral. They vary with impressibility and intelligence. There is no natural religion, unless we call fetichism such, which is the first religion of the child, and of the races so simple and so ignorant as to be no better than children. Naturally, infants are unconscious atheists. From this they go on to fetichism, polytheism, monotheism, and finally to pantheism or atheism, of which they are conscious.
The second book treats of the elements of Passion, of Desire and Will, and of Emotion. Letourneau holds with most of the physiologists, that, strictly speaking, there can be no free-will, that all acts are the inevitable results of predetermined causes. But he allows a quasi free-will in the control which many have over passion and in the balance of emotions. He defines the will to be "the power a making all the forces of one's being converge to a given end, when this power acts with an apparent freedom." The consciousness of freedom is as good as real freedom, in the practical work of life.
The third and longest book treats of the passions in themselves, nutritive, sensitive, and cerebral. The sixty pages which are given