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out of Sinai, should be proclaimed and sounded forth the first tidings and trumpet” of political reformation to all nations? I would have you remember that the love of liberty is a public affection which this nation has deeply imbibed and has effectually diffused throughout the world; and that she cannot now suppress it, nor smother her desires to promote that glorious cause, for it is her own cause.
Mr. President: I thought that after answering the objections against this protest, I would show affirmatively why it ought to be adopted. But with the disappearance of opposing arguments, the reasons in favor of it have risen with sufficient distinctness into view. I will only add that it is time to protest. The new outworks of our system of politics in Europe have all been carried away. Republicanism has now no abiding place there, except on the rock of San Marino and in the mountain home of William Tell. France and Austria are said to be conspiring to expel it even there. In my inmost heart, I could almost bid them dare to try an experiment which would arouse the nations of Europe to resist the commission of a crime so flagrant and so bold.
I have heard frequently, here and elsewhere, that we can promote the cause of freedom and humanity only by our example, and it is most true. But what should that example be but that of performing not one national duty only, but all national duties; not those beginning and ending with ourselves only, but those also which we owe to other nations and to all mankind? No dim eclipse will suffice to illuminate a benighted world.
I have the common pride of every American in the aggrandizement of my country. No effort of mine to promote it, by just and lawful means, ever was or ever will be withheld.
Our flag, when it rises to the topmast or the turret of an enemy's ship or fortress, excites in me a pleasure as sincere as in any other man. And yet I have seen that flag on two occasions when it awakened even more intense gratification. One was when it entered the city of Cork, covering supplies for a chivalrous and generous but famishing people. The other was when it recently protected in his emigration an exile of whom continental Europe was unworthy, and to whom she had denied a refuge. Sir, it raised no surprise and excited no regret in me, as it did in some, to see that exile and that flag alike saluted and honored by the people, and alike feared and hated by the kings of Europe.
Let others employ themselves in devising new ligaments to bind these states together. They shall have my respect for their patriotism and their zeal. For myself, I am content with the old ones just as I find them. I believe that the Union is founded in physical, moral, and political necessities, which demand one government, and would endure no divided states; that it is impregnable, therefore, equally to force or to faction; that Secession is a feverish dream, and Disunion an unreal and passing chimera; and that, for weal or woe, for liberty or servitude, this great country is one and inseparable. I believe, also, that it is Righteousness, not greatness, that exalteth a nation, and that it is Liberty, not repose, that renders national existence worth possessing. Let me, then, perform my humble part in the service of the republic, by cultivating the sense of justice and the love of liberty which are the elements of its being, and by developing their saving influences, not only in our domestic conduct, but in our foreign conduct also, and in our social intercourse with all other states and nations.
It has already come to this—that whenever in any country an advocate of freedom, by the changes of fortune, is driven into exile, he hastens to seek an asylum here; that whenever a hero falls in the cause of freedom on any of her battle-fields, his eyes involuntarily turn toward us, and he commits that cause with a confiding trust to our sympathy and our care. Never, sir, as we value the security of our own freedom, or the welfare and happiness of mankind, or the favor of Heaven, that has enabled us to protect both, let that exile be inhospitably repulsed. Never let the prayer of that dying hero fall on ears unused to hear, or spend itself upon hearts that refuse to be moved.
Note.-Louis Kossuth arrived in this country on the 4th day of December, 1851, having been invited hither by a joint resolution of Congress. He reached Washington on the 30th day of the same month. The Senate had appointed a committee (Senators Cass, Seward and Shields) to wait upon him on his arrival. A welcome to the country and to the Capitol had been extended to him by an almost unanimous vote of both Houses, six in the Senate and sixteen in the House, only, voting in the negative. He was formally received also by the President, Mr. Fillmore, by the Secretary of State, Mr. Webster, nd by Henry Clay. A public dinner was given to him in Washington, at which Daniel Webster, Senators Cass and Donglass made long and eloquent speeches avowing substantially their assent to the doctrine that the United States ought to interfere to prevent Russian intervention against the independence of Hungary.--Ed.
AMERICAN STEAM NAVIGATION
APRIL 27, 18 5 2.
What will Congress do—what has Congress done for the Core lins steamers? These are questions which meet every visitor returning from the capital on his arrival at New York, and which every traveller from America encounters, on 'Change in Liverpool and London, and in the Courts of Paris and St. Petersburg. There is reason enough for all this curiosity and interest among the merchants and statesmen of the two continents.
Under a contract with the United States, made on the 19th of April, 1849, between E. K. Collins, James Brown, and Stewart Brown, merchants of New York, and the United States, those persons now prosecute, between the ports of New York and Liverpool, forty voyages across the ocean, or twenty outward and inward voyages, annually, in steamships, carrying freight and passengers on their own account, and also public mails on account of the United States, and receive from the treasury, as a compensation for that service, three hundred and eighty-five thousand dollars a year, which is equivalent to somewhat more than $19,000 for each outward and return passage. The Committee on Finance propose an amendment to the annual Deficiency Bill, the effect of which is to increase the number of mails and voyages from twenty to twenty-six, and the compensation from $19,000 to $33,000 for each voyage.
Ought THIS MEASURE TO BE ADOPTED ?
I assume, for the present, that the existing enterprise is to be perseveringly sustained. In that view a question arises
Whether the proposed inerease of mail service is expedient?
When this line was established, the British Cunard steamers, consisting of seven vessels, were making semi-monthly voyages and carrying semi-monthly mails between the same ports during the eight temperate months, and monthly mails during the four other months; and thus they had a monopoly of steam ocean postage between the two countries. We authorized the Collins line to carry just the same number of mails, alternating with the Cunard steamers; and so we broke up the monopoly, and divided the postages of the route equally with Great Britain. So far, all was right and well. But recently the Cunard steamers have continued their semi-monthly mails throughout the whole year, while ours were limited to the eight temperate months; and so the equality of postage revenues has been subverted, and the early British monopoly has been partially restored. By the proposed increase of mails we shall exactly alternate again ; and on every day that an American or European mail steam-vessel shall leave New York, one of the other line will leave the opposite port; and so the monopoly will again be broken, and the complete equality of postage revenues will be re-established. We must do just this, or relinquish, in an important degree, the great postal object of the enterprise. The Postmaster-General, and the Secretary of the Navy,
and the Senate's Committees on the Post Office, on Naval Affairs, and on Finance, agree that the service must be thus increased, if it is to be at all continued. The increase, then, is not merely expedient, but even necessary and indispensable.
Assuming now that the service is to be increased, a question comes up
Is the increase of compensation from $19,000 to $33,000 per voyage just and reasonable ?
It is just and reasonable, if necessary. It is clear that some increase is necessary. The proprietors decline to make the six new voyages for nothing, and even to make them for $19,000 a voyage. We cannot oblige the contractors to make them for that compensation, nor even to make them for any compensation, for they are beyond the contract. No one else offers to make them on those terms, or, indeed, on any terms. We must therefore apply to Mr. Collins and his associates to enlarge the contract. But opening the contract for enlargement, opens it for revision. They consent to enlarge, but they equally appeal to us to remodel it; and they assign the reason, that while the average cost of each voyage is $65,216 64 the average receipts are only
They further show that a capital of three millions invested has paid no dividends, and been reduced by inevitable losses to a little more than two and a half millions; that their stock is sold in Wall street at fifty cents on a dollar; and that, even if they would, yet they cannot dispatch another ship or mail after the 15th of May next. Something must be allowed, if not for profits, at least for renovation; and so the actual loss on each voyage being in round numbers $17,000, it is quite certain that an increase of not less than $19,000 is necessary to keep the steamers in vigorous and sure operation.
All questions of the fairness of this showing are precluded by the offer of the contractors to relinquish the enterprise to the United States, or to any assignee indicated by them, after the contract shall have been remodelled, and by the neglect of any other party to propose for a new contract, even on the terms thus recommended.
So, the increase of compensation solicited is just and reasonable, and is, moreover, like the increase of the mail service, necessary and indispensable.
Now, sir, we have arrived at the very question of the whole question. We must do just what is thus proposed, or relinquish the contract altogether.
The honorable Chairman of the Committee on Finance, (Mr. HUNTER,] dissenting from his associates, advises that alternative. Sir, with a profound respect for that distinguished senator, not now for the first time, nor for mere effect, expressed, I must have his pardon, nevertheless, for preferring the authority of his associates. Extreme caution is apt to be the fruit of the patient and patriotic labors of his office. An appropriation bih seldom has passed this House without calling forth from him or his predecessors eloquent yet groundless alarms of an exhausted treasury, and of impending taxation, if not bankruptcy.
While we cannot, without wounding the national sensibilities and impairing the national character, abandon any great enterprise, it is equally true that indecision is among the worst vices of the statesman, and that vacillation in the conduct of public. affairs is fruitful of national demoralization, and indicative of cer tain national decline. Persistence, when practicable, invigorates national energies, discourages foreign rivalry, and prevents foreign insult and aggression. Compare France-enlightened,