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时间: 2019年12月06日 08:19

� Lord Palmerston and Mr. Poulett Thompson treated the apprehensions of Lord Dudley Stuart as visionary, and expressed their conviction that there was nothing in the conduct of the Czar to excite either alarm or hostility in Great Britain. Their real opinions were very different. A few days later an event occurred which showed how little Russia was to be relied upon; and that it was impossible to restrain her aggressive propensities, even by the most solemn treaty obligations, undertaken in the face of Europe, and guaranteed by the Great Powers. Cracow, which comprised a small territory about 490 square miles in extent, with a population of about 123,000, including the city, was at the general settlement in 1815 formed into a free State, whose independence was guaranteed by the Treaty of Vienna in the following terms:?The town of Cracow, with its territory, is declared to be for ever a free, independent, and strictly neutral city, under the protection of Russia, Austria, and Prussia." During the insurrection of Poland in 1830 the little State of Cracow could not repress its sympathies, and the news of the outbreak was received there with the greatest enthusiasm. After the destruction of the Polish army, persons who were compromised by the revolt sought an asylum in Cracow; and 2,000 political refugees were found settled there in 1836. This served as a pretext for the military occupation of the city in February of that year, notwithstanding the joint guarantee that it should never be entered by a foreign army. This was only a prelude to the ultimate extinction of its independence, which occurred ten years later. Lord Palmerston launched a vigorous protest, but it had no result. � As in the whole history of the world, perhaps, so great a calamity as the Irish famine never called for sympathy and relief, so never was a more generous response elicited by any appeal to humanity. The Government and the Legislature did all that was possible with the means at their disposal, and the machinery that already existed, or could be hastily constructed, to meet the overwhelming emergency. The newly established Poor Law system, though useful as far as it went, was quite inadequate to meet such great distress. It had been passed while the country was comparatively prosperous, and contained no provision for such a social disorganisation as this famine. By the Acts of 1 and 2 Victoria, c. 56, no outdoor relief whatever could be given in any circumstances. The size of the unions was also a great impediment to the working of the Poor Law. They were three times the extent of the corresponding divisions in England. In Munster and[544] Connaught, where there was the greatest amount of destitution and the least amount of local agency available for its relief, the unions were much larger than in the more favoured provinces of Ulster and Leinster. The union of Ballina comprised a region of upwards of half a million acres, and within its desert tracts the famine assumed its most appalling form, the workhouse being more than forty miles distant from some of the sufferers. As a measure of precaution, the Government had secretly imported and stored a large quantity of Indian corn, as a cheap substitute for the potato, which would have served the purpose much better had the people been instructed in the best modes of cooking it. It was placed in commissariat dep?ts along the western coast of the island, where the people were not likely to be supplied on reasonable terms through the ordinary channels of trade. The public works consisted principally of roads, on which the people were employed as a sort of supplement to the Poor Law. Half the cost was a free grant from the Treasury, and the other half was charged upon the barony in which the works were undertaken. The expense incurred under the Labour Rate Act, 9 and 10 Victoria, c. 107," amounted to 锟?,766,789. It was almost universally admitted, when the pressure was over, that the system of public works adopted was a great mistake; and it seems wonderful that such grievous blunders could have been made with so many able statesmen and political economists at the head of affairs and in the service of the Government. The public works undertaken consisted in the breaking up of good roads to level hills and fill hollows, and the opening of new roads in places where they were not required攚ork which the people felt to be useless, and which they performed only under strong compulsion, being obliged to walk to them in all weathers for miles, in order to earn the price of a breakfast of Indian meal. Had the labour thus comparatively wasted been devoted to the draining, subsoiling, and fencing of the farms, connected with a comprehensive system of arterial drainage, immense and lasting benefit to the country would have been the result, especially as works so well calculated to ameliorate the soil and guard against the moisture of the climate might have been connected with a system of instruction in agricultural matters of which the peasantry stood so much in need, and to the removal of the gross ignorance which had so largely contributed to bring about the famine. As it was, enormous sums were wasted. Much needless hardship was inflicted on the starving people in compelling them to work in frost and rain when they were scarcely able to walk, and, after all the vast outlay, very few traces of it remained in permanent improvements on the face of the country. The system of Government relief works failed chiefly through the same difficulty which impedes every mode of relief, whether public or private攏amely, the want of machinery to work it. It was impossible suddenly to procure an efficient staff of officers for an undertaking of such enormous magnitude攖he employment of a whole people. The overseers were necessarily selected in haste; many of them were corrupt, and encouraged the misconduct of the labourers. In many cases the relief committees, unable to prevent maladministration, yielded to the torrent of corruption, and individual members only sought to benefit their own dependents. The people everywhere flocked to the public works; labourers, cottiers, artisans, fishermen, farmers, men, women, and children攁ll, whether destitute or not, sought for a share of the public money. In such a crowd it was almost impossible to discriminate properly. They congregated in masses on the roads, idling under the name of work, the really destitute often unheeded and unrelieved because they had no friend to recommend them. All the ordinary employments were neglected; there was no fishing, no gathering of seaweed, no collecting of manure. The men who had employment feared to lose it by absenting themselves for any other object; those unemployed spent their time in seeking to obtain it. The whole industry of the country seemed to be engaged in road-making. It became absolutely necessary to put an end to it, or the cultivation of the land would be neglected. Works undertaken on the spur of the moment攏ot because they were needful, but merely to employ the people攚ere in many cases ill-chosen, and the execution equally defective. The workers, desirous to protect their employment, were only anxious to give as little labour as possible, in which their overlookers or gangers in many cases heartily agreed. The favouritism, the intimidation, the wholesale jobbing practised in many cases were shockingly demoralising. The problem was to support 2,000,000 or 3,000,000 of destitute persons, and this was in a great measure effected, though at an enormous cost to the empire. About eleven at night I went out on the deck. The sea wrought exceedingly,and the high, foaming waves round about had in some sort the appearance offire, but did not give much if any light. The sailor at the helm said he latelysaw a corposant at the head of the mast. I observed that the master of the shipordered the carpenter to keep on the deck; and, though he said little, Iapprehended his care was that the carpenter with his axe might be in readinessin case of any emergency. Soon after this the vehemency of the wind abated, andbefore morning they again put the ship under sail. "That which hath so closely engaged my mind, in seeking to the Lord forinstruction, is, whether, after the full information I have had of theoppression which the slaves lie under who raise the West India produce, which Ihave gained by reading a caution and warning to Great Britain and her colonies,written by Anthony Benezet, it is right for me to take passage in a vesselemployed in the West India trade. 青娱乐视频分类精品1_青娱乐在线极品盛宴,青娱乐在线视频免费观看 On the 1st of March Mr. Villiers, adhering to his principle, brought forward the last of those annual motions for immediate repeal which had contributed so powerfully to undermine the Corn Laws. After a spirited debate of two evenings, in the course of which Mr. Cobden warned the monopolist party that a protracted resistance would compel the Anti-Corn-Law League to maintain its agitation and concentrate its energies, the House rejected the motion by a majority of 267 to 78. After I went to my lodgings, and the case was a little known in town, aFriend laid before me the great inconvenience attending a passage in thesteerage, which for a time appeared very discouraging to me. In the House of Lords several discussions took place on the dismissal of the Repeal magistrates. Lord Clanricarde, on the 14th of July, moved resolutions declaring that act of the Lord Chancellor "unconstitutional, unjust, and inexpedient." The Duke of Wellington met the motion by a direct negative. "These meetings," he said, "consisting of 10,000, 20,000, or 100,000 men攏o matter the number of thousands攈aving been continued, I wish to know with what object they were continued? With a view to address Parliament to repeal the union? No, my lords; they were continued in order to obtain the desired repeal of the union by the terror of the people, and, if not by terror, by force and violence; and the persons calling these meetings were magistrates, the very men who must have been employed by the Government to resist such terror and violence, and to arrest those who were guilty of such breaches of the peace. That is the ground on which the Lord Chancellor of Ireland said to the magistrates, 'You must be dismissed if you attend, or invite attendance at such meetings.'" The Duke "regretted to learn there was poverty in Ireland; but," he asked, "was that poverty relieved by a march of twenty-five and thirty miles a day in spring and summer to hear seditious speeches? Was poverty relieved by subscribing to the Repeal rent?" The resolutions were negatived by a majority of 91 to 29. In a subsequent debate, arising out of a petition presented by Lord Roden from 5,000 Ulster Protestants, complaining that they had been prevented from celebrating the Orange anniversary, while the most flagrant breaches of the law were passed over in the case of those who wanted to overthrow the Constitution, which the Orangemen were sworn to defend, the Duke of Wellington, on that occasion, said that "nothing had been neglected by the Government that was necessary to preserve the peace of the country, and to meet all misfortunes and consequences which might result from the violence of the passions of those men who unfortunately guided the multitude in Ireland. He did not dispute the extent of the conspiracy or the dangers resulting from it; he did not deny the assistance received from foreigners of nearly all nations攄isturbed and disturbing spirits, who were anxious to have an opportunity of injuring and deteriorating the great prosperity of this country攂ut he felt confident that the measures adopted by the Government would enable it to resist all, and preserve the peace." "To trade freely with oppressors without labouring to dissuade them from suchunkind treatment, and to seek for gain by such traffic, tends, I believe, tomake them more easy respecting their conduct than they would be, if the causeof universal righteousness was humbly and firmly attended to by those ingeneral with whom they have commerce; and that complaint of the Lord by hisprophet, "They have strengthened the hands of the wicked," hath very oftenrevived in my mind. I may here add some circumstances which occurred to mebefore I had any prospect of a visit there. David longed for some water in awell beyond an army of Philistines who were at war with Israel, and some of his men, to please him, ventured their lives in passing through this army, andbrought that water. [See larger version]