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additional million to be the same as on the present capital; the million to be advanced to government for the period of the charter, unless government should upon certain notice think proper to repay it sooner. The Irish bank was also to manage the whole debt of Ireland, free of further expence, whatever addition may be made to it. He therefore moved, that it be the opinion of the committee, that the governor and company of the bank of Ireland be continued as a corporation till the Ist of Janu
Mr. Tierney objected to the resolution, on the ground that he disapproved of the principle of borrowing money from the bank wbilst the restriction of specie existed, and be thought this a bad money-bargain for the public.
Mr. Foster replied, that this million was to be raised by the bank proprietors or from subscribers, and would be bona fide an increase of their renewal. The motive of the renewal of the charter was not with a view to any money bargain, but to secure the existence of the company, to discount at five per cent. for the public.
Mr. Parnell objected to the renewal of the charter, because it would remove i he transactions of the bank out of the controul of parliament.
Mr. Foster and Mr. Parnell explained.
Mr. Bankes stated, that the committee whose report he kad had the honour to submit to the bouse, were of opinion that the benefit to be attached to the paper of the national banks of England and Ireland, by its exclusive credit, was not expedient to be continued longer than the exigency of the times required. It was not fit that the bands of ihe legislature should be tied up, whether the circums'ances of the country were so materially changed as to throw an idditional benefit into the hands of the bank or not. tle thought that ten, or at most fifteen years addition, was sufficini to be vranted at present.
Mr. Maurice Fiizgerall, in order to give some idea of the benefit that was to be derived from an accredited issue of p per, stated that one banking house in Ireland set up on the price of a capiai's commission in the dragoons, and that they afterwards had a floating capital to the amount ef 490,0001. Besides, he did not think that the bank of Ireland was entiiled to much favour from the legislature, as at the time of the invasion at Bantry-bay, under ge.
neral Hoche, they refused to advance money to govern.. ment, and it was by the money of a loyal individual that the army was put in motion.
The Chancellors of the Exchequer for England and Ireland maintained that the liberality and loyalty of the bank of Ireland had not any the smallest reason to be called in question. The addition was only one million and a half Irish currency; and the security which it gave. to individuals, and the benefit to the public by the gratuitous management of its debt, were ample reasons for the renewal of its charter.
The resolutions were agreed to, and the report was oro dered to be received on Monday.
On the motion of Mr. Eden, the evidence that was given last night relative to the effect of the orders of council was ordered to be printed.
SUGAR DISTILLATION. On the motion of Lord Binning, the report of the committee respecting the use of sugar in distilleries was brought up; and the house resolved into a committce for the recommitment of the two first resolutions, Mr. Wharton in the chair. On the first resolution being then read,
Mír. Coke repeated his former objections to the measure, and contended that the apprehension of scarcity was nie founded, and had arisen from the conduct of the West Indian merchants and the discussion of this subject. He denied that the last harvest was short, and stated as a proof of that, that the price of corn was not higher than was necessary to afford a fair profit to the farmer. He contenderi, that if this measure were to be continued for only two years, there would not be produced the same quantity of bread corn; that the right honourable gentle man would be responsible for all the consequences, and would be the first minister to prevent by liis measures the poor from being able to procure bread. He should therea fore object to the measure in every stage.
Mr. Hibbert contended, that it was neither the growers of corn, nor the growers of sugar, that were particularly concerned in this question. The consumers of corn, the manufacturers, and all who wished well to the country, were the persons most concerned ; and as the supply which the country had from importatica for some years VOL.III.--1808.
past is now stopped, it was the more necessary to take measures to provide for making up that supply. The agriculture of the country was not adequate to make up for that deficiency, and therefore there could be no rea sonable objection to the introduction of some part of it from the West Indies.
Sir James Hall had much to say upon the subject, but bad been anticipated by the chancellor of the exchequer for Ireland, in whose sentiments he had entirely concurred. But there was one ground particularly upon which he objected to the measure ; because it would be a dan. gerous precedent, and lay the ground of resorting to so injurious a measure under similar circumstances. He must disapprove of any measure generally which would discourage the growth of a necessary of life, to encourage the growth of a mere luxury.
Mr. William Smith was extremely sorry to differ upon this subject from the honourable gentleman who began this discussion, with whom he was very much in the babit of agreeing. No man could doubt the existence of partial scarcity. He had documents, received earlier than the discussion of the question, to prove that fact, and which from their strength he did not think proper to read. These accounts he had received from parts of Scotland with which he was connected. The late crop of barley was short, and though there was no scarcity of wheat, there was a scarcity of barley, and an universal scarcity of oats in the country, as might be collected from the price of oats in the market, which is now 49s. and 50s. He therefore did not object to the resolution before the com. mittee because it goes too far, but because it was not likely to produce the good effects that were proposed in its adoption ; because, by resorting to the measure at the present time, not a single quarter of corn would be saved for consumption ; but some on the contrary taken from the consumption, só far as the corn of the present year was concerned. On this ground he should, if no other gentleman did, move an alteration of the resolution to make it commence much earlier in its operation. He also objected to that part of the resolution which would impose upon ministers the necessity of a positive measure, which might exeite alarm in the country, by extending the prohibition after the 1st of October, if the barvest should not be abundant. He should prefer extending the
prohibition to the 1st of January, 1st of March, or even the 1st of July, pext year, if necessary, leaving to ministers, if the next crop should be abundant, to open the distilleries by proclamation, an act which would give the country universal satisfaction. He would therefore give to the West Indies this temporary relief, but be would not give to them the slightest hopes of its being repeated, because lie wonld not suffer the agricultural interests of the country to be permanently invaded. The honour. able gentleman concluded by moving as an amendment, that the 20th of June should be substituted for the 1st of July, as the period when the prohibition of the use of com in the distiHeries should commence.
On the question being put on the amendment, Mr. Yorke condemned the interference of parliament with the agriculture of the country. Great Britain and Ireland must be able to produce sufficient for their consumption, if their agriculture was not to be interfered with by impolitic measures of this description. The shutting of the ports of the continent against us would amount to a bounty on the improvement and extension of agriculture, not only with respect to corn, but the cultivation of hemp. This measure he considered a dangerous experiment, and agreed with the honourable gentleman wbo spoke last, that no hope should be held out to the West India mer chants that this measure should ever again be resorted to. He did not see why a certain sum may not be lent to the West Indies upon adequate security, to enable the proprietors to turn their lands to the production of other articles. He would even prefer, rather than break in upon a grand principle, to grant a sum of money to his majesty to enable him to purchase a quantity of the redundant sugar, for the relief of the West Indian mer. chants,
Mr. Davies Giddy considered it of the highest importance to encourage the agriculture by exportation, consumption in breweries and distilleries, and in every possible mode. He was, however, of opinion, that in times of necessity the legislature had a right to interfere and prevent every other consumption of corn, in order to save it for human food; but whilst he admitted this right, he contended as strongly, that nothing would so legitimately give that right as the deficiency of human food. The reason why he thought that agriculture ought to be encou
raged, was because nothing could make a country so truly great as to renderit independant for articles of necessity of any other nation, He should never, therefore, consent to any interference with the agriculture of the country for any object of external interest.
Mr. Bai ham re-asserted and vindicated some of his former statements, respecting the motives of the opposition to this measure, and argued at considerable length in support of it.
Mr. Hawkins Browne argued that some means should be devised for taking off some of the redundant stock of sugar. If the effect of the measure shonld be to injure the landed interest, no gentleman would consent to it; but the object of the measure was, to prevent the consequences of a scarcity if the next crop should not be a good one.
Sir John Sebright could not avoid entering his protest against this measure, and declared, that though he was one of the landed interest, he did not object to this measure on any narrow view, but from the opinion that it was fraught with injury to the agriculture of the country:
Mr. H. Lascelles recalled the committee to the real question before them. The resolution under consideration was, whether the use of corn in distilleries, from the Ist of July to the 1st of October, should be prohibited. During that period the distilleries usually were stopped, so that po injury could be done thereby to the landed interest. He could not see why the measure should not be resorted io, vesting in his majesty's ministers a discretion as to the continuance of the prohibition; because they would be bound to take into their consideration the nature of the harvest and the prices of corn, and would be responsible for the exercise of that discretion.
Lord Binning agreed to the amendment made by his honourable friend (Mr. Wm. Smith).
Mr. Portman enumerated the inconveniences that would be suffered by distillers, if the use of corn were to be probibited in dis illeries on the Ist of July, both in consequence of the corn they had on hand ground, and of the loss they would sustain from the cattle, which were now fed upon grains in warm houses, being exposed to the effect of the open air.
Mr. Whitbread wished merely to state the ground of the vote which he meant to give. He should certainly