Workshop/A Lecture on Human Happiness

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THE following pages form the first of a series of Lectures, which will be published at intervals, of about two months between each.

The subjects intended to be therein embraced, will, perhaps, be exhibited in a point of view but little according with the notions implanted in the present generation by early education. To all, therefore, who have not formed a judgment of things contrary to the first impressions of youth, " our ideas will, perhaps, at first sight, appear to be erroneous; the question that remains to be decided is-"ARE THEY SO IN FACT?"

The points in which we differ are chiefly these: -In the old world men are respected in proportion as they are enabled by the possession of wealth to command the labour of others; and so essentially necessary are indolence and uselessness to respectability, that men are despised in proportion as they apply their own hands to purposes of utility.

In the new, we hope to secure to all men the value of their services to society in whatever way they may be given; to respect men in proportion to their utility in promoting, in any shape or way, the happiness of our species; and to attach value, not to pieces of metal, but to every thing which tends to improve the condition of the human race, physically, morally, or intellectually.

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INTRODUCTION. -+- I F the power bV which we exist has implanted ill man a dr~ ire to associate llimself with others of his own sr.:cies; which i!'1 evidently the case, society is the natul"al condition of mankind. If then societies produce the most overwhelming evils, and give to man the power of exercising over man every description of oppression and cruelty, it ill certain, either that Hod has created man for wretchedness; or, that man has Jet to le:l.rn the principles, on which societies must be founded to render him happy. If men had never entered into a state of societY', their condition would be scarcely, in any degree, removed fl'om that of other animals. Their whole occupation would consist in supplying the first calls of nature: and, as each individual could I>OSSPSS only what was attained by his ownindllstry, how ill would he be supplied, even with the absolute Becessariesof life! The mere congre~ation of men would, however, do nothin~ towards alnelioratmg their condition, if each still acted for Ilimself alone.: but th~ propen"ity,t0excha,n$e l~r.fo1' lubour~ a prop'enslty peculiar to man, IS the onginal prmclple, by which he IS enabled to leave, at such an iUlllleasureable distance below him, all the brute creatioll. Why then do we so frequ('ntly attribute our miseries to the defects of governments, smce it is exclusively by barter, that, the power, by which individuals are enabled to tyranJli7.e over nations, is introduced into the world? And here let the man, who desires t6 benefit his fellow-creatures, pause and reflect. Let him impress strongly upon his mind this fact, that barter, and barter alone, is the basis of society; and that all otkef'institulio118 amongst men are built wholly and solei}" upon it. Let him first impress upon his mind this fact and ItS importance; and, if he can so far divest himself of prejudice, as to forget, for a while, his former conclusions upon the subject of the causes of human evils, and will patiently and deliberately analyze the present system of commerce, he will find in it the causes of some of the most dreadful calamities to which human natuI'e is subject. It is in vam that the benevolent attempt to improve the condition of thl'lr fellow-creatures by perpetually strikitlg at l'f.


li~cts. It is to call~cs that attention must be devoted bellJrc any p~rlllatlent good can be done in socit'ty. But our plans are,c1l1efty fOl'~ed to r.nee~ tr?ubles half way. By an endless variety of charl~able Institutions, monuments equally of benevolen. ce and Ignorance, we attempt to subdue the evils of society; but the attempt is vain. Let societies be formed tor the purpose of annihilating the causes, whence the evils of mankind arise,-societies, not to relieve the miserable, but to abolish the causes of misery; not to assist the poor with money, but to abolish the causes of poverty; not to detect thieves, but to ~ake away ~he multitude of temptations to steal; societies havmg for their uowed r.ucpose an equal distribution of the !Ileans, of happiness to al , and the combininlJ' of all mankind 1!1 umtv, pea~e, a,nd, concord. ~)nly give Cit"th to societies founded on ~hls I?nnClple; they wIll ask f?r no continued support, but tlIelr effects shall be such, that, In a few short years, the books of every charitable institution, of whatever kind and for wha.tever purpose, will be c1used for ever. ' , The AutlIor of Nature, by whatever name we call him has given to ev~ry thing, which his powel' has produced, its ~ecu. liar properties; by a knowledge of; and attention to 'I'Ih~1 alone, liave we the I?~wer of bringing any thin'" to perfectio~ ?r to the.approach ~t It. To.the vegeta~le ~vorla ~e has given Its pecuhar properties; and, 10 the cultivation of It, we attend to the diversitIes ?~ each particular plant; and as far as our knowle~ge and !lbll!ty e~able us to do so, we furnish it with the ~rhcular SOil, situation and temperature, that it requires: k~o~!1g t~at to attempt to make it accommouate itself to allY 80l~, 8It~atlon, or tempel'atuI'e which we choose to give it, would be 111 v~n. AmI to. man he h~!l. given his peculiarities, his natural rlg!lts, l~nd lns propensIties to enjoy them: anti, if we ~ould bl1ng hun to the degree uf perfection of which his natu re IS ~ble, 01' to the appl'oach of it, we must accommndate human illstit!1tiolls ~o !lis nature; for the eXJleri~nce of all ages !Ias lR~t satl~factonly prov.ed, that we cannot, Without destroymg. h18 happ'lDess, make hiS, nature bend to any institutions, W~lC~ !e t1unk pl"Oper to °'l\'e ,him. It is the attempt to do Ous, It IS the attempt to make IllS nature submit to laws insti~ l1tions, ~nd ,cUStOIl~S, which are altoO'ether opposed to it,'which 18 the cluef, If not tIl': sole ca!1se of tile misenes by which he is surro~nd~: and frult!es$ will be every attempt to render him happy, until all these have undergone an entire change. Weare fully aware that those who take upon themselves the defence of Mr. OWEN'S plaus, arc looked upon, by the I4ll- · .,;. 5 thinking part of the community, as mere enthusiasts: Mr. (hn:N being, in their estimation, a visionary, if not actually a madman. 'Ve will endeavour to explain why such opinions have been formed of him, by offering a few remarks on the nature of oredibility. No two things, perhaps, are more distinct from each other, than to be credible, and to be ereditetl. The former depends upon the actual practicability of a thing; the latter upon our kitowleclge of it. principles. That only is a[togetlier incredible, which it is totally impossible to' account for on any known principle. For example, if it had been said, that St. Paul'. Church would remove, of its own accord. to another situation in the course of next vear, this would be alto,gether incredible, because no one could'form any conception ot any j>?wer existing in it, which could produce such an effect; WIthout which it is quite imf/JSSible the voluntary removal could take place. But iliings become more credible, in proportion as the dim.' culty of accounting for them decreases. For example; if a man were to tell us, that he had made a discovery, by which he could travel in air, with as much facility as on water, we should not be inclined to treat his assertion in the llame manner as in the former case; because we know of a eower by which the first step towards doing this may be effected. But not knowing by what means we can pro~eed in any other direction than that of the wind, we should by no means 1ield our perfect credence to his assertion, unless some newly lOvented power could be demonstrated by which we mil[ht be enabled to steer in any direction we p'leased. Dut that is perfectly credi~le, which may eaSily be traced to some known power, which, if called into action, is calculated to produce it. Take, for example, the following assertion, which we make unhesitatinttly, knowing that we can prove its truth to demonstration. "~very member of ·tlIe British community, capable of workin~may be enabled to surround himself with every comfort ot life." Now here we know of a power by which. we are a~le to pro~f:lce the co~forts of I,ife in a stdJicient quantity, nay, m quantities four-fold suffiCient, to .supply the want!! of every member ot the community. We know that all men would be glad to obtain these comforts if they could. \Ve know the cause by which the lDass of mankind has hitherto been prevented from obta1niug them, which will be fully explained in the cour~e of these lectul'es, and we know by what means that cause lIlay be removed. We have


the DESIRE for wealtlt: we have the POWER to create it: and the KNOWLEDGE of various plans b.r which it may be 110 DISTRIBUTED as to produce the asserted effects. But still it is undeniable that it IS discredited; and it would be strange indeed if 'it were not; for we are much within bounds when we say, that ninety-nine persons out of ever.r hun~r~~ form. their judgme.nt of things, not by the rult~s of credIbilIty whl~h w~ ha~e Just explamed, nor by any other 11l1es, foullded III rabonanty, but by precedent; and where is the pre~edent for universal equality of wealth and tlte mean8 oj happaness? w'lien ~ve hear of a~y th!ng new, and quite unexpected, the fint emotion of ~ur !DlUds IS t!lat of surpri8e; and the greatflU.' of that s~rynse,IS ahyays III ex~ct propOl'tion to the great. ness oj the diJIerenee between the thmg heard o[ and any thinO' befor~ existing, before he~ of, or expected. 'But when ou~ ~st;oUlshme~t ha.s ~ l~ttle subsid~d, the first inquiry is, "How JS It done? or, If Jt IS only a thmg proposed "How is it to be done?" And if it is ~ade 'p'lai.n to us {hat the ca.u~ !S equal to the effect, we beheve It; If othe,rwl:,e, we belJeve It not•. If ~e~, we have stated be true, (and we fear no refutation,) It IS eVIdent that if any effect is proposed to be pro! h~ced, differing wholly from any effect ever before produced, Jt IS necessary that we under8tand the power by which it is proposed to produce it, before it can be credible to U8. It woultl be strange, indeed, then, if Mr. OWEN'S plan!! were at present JlC.lpular: for unless in actual practice, to be generally approved of they' must be generally understood. At the present moment there IS not one man in one thousand who understands the pruent Byttlelm, in which he has been born and educated' we C)uestion whether there is one in ten thousand who unders~nds ~r. OwEN'S: and yet we find numbers of men, who have not given !he su~j~ct a month's consideration, unhesitatingly con. demn It a~ vIsionary and a~surd; the sole reason of which is, that ~en JD. general.are gu~ded by. precedents, in the absence ofwblch~ thmgs are Immediately ulscl·edited. Suppose a balloon had never been heard of or thought of, and some one were to say, that he could rise in a vehicle lighter than the air to an alt!tude far above the clouds, he would be told that he was mad. And though his arguments in support of his opinion 1!'ight be almost conc!usive in his favour, he would not, except from a very few, obtam a more favourable hearinll'. Ifthis be true, how much more rational it woul8 be for men . when they are told that new effects may be produced by l1e~ 7 combinations, instead of confounding their judgmcII ts b)' look·· ing at the dijft:rellcc hetween the thing proposed alllI tlllng~ ~.~ they an', to say, ,. by what powel' do you propose to 11~) tfil~ r and theil to llecil1c exclusively by the result of the IIIqUlrr, whether tll? caui'iC be equal to the e!lect. This is the only rational mode of forminO' a J'udgment of any thing; and tIns ~ - 'h'I mode the mass of mankind nevel' give themselves t e troua e to adopt; for which reason it is that public opinion, is seldom riO'ht upon anv subject that is new: and fiJI' which reason al~ne it is that'Mr. OWEI' is denominated a visionary by those, who are either too idle to examine his plans, or too feeble minded td comprehend them. In entering upon an investigation of the of human happiness, it may perhaps be advantageous, to. the consideration of the subject in detail, to inqUire, b,nelly, mto the nature of it. . Nothing, indeecl, can be of more Importance than this; for if we have not a clear idea of the object we are in pursuit of, how shall we ·be enabled to judge of the means by. which we propose to attain it? Let us then endeavour to estahlish in our minds some criterion by which we may be enabled to judge of the pursuits of men. \Ve do not attach the idea of happiness to inanimate substances, because they have no sensibility: they are equally incapable of receiving botll pleasure and pain. They cannot sutler, neither can they enjoy, because they ca~not feel. Sensibility, therefore, is the medium both of happm~ss ~nd misery; the former consists in agreeable, the III ~Isagreeable impressions being made upon us through thIS medIUm: and the degree of happiness we are capable of enjoying, JD.ust be limIted bv the strength and number of the agreeable Impressions wh1ch our nature is capable of receiving. Imagine any being, distinguished from the vegetable world by the possession of a single sense, that of smelling for exampIe; and that the impreSSIOns made upo~ it by exter~als ,!e~e similar to those made on the same sense III human bemgs,. It IS obvious that the happiness of such a being would consist in the agreeable exercise of this one organ: but its happines~ of a very limited nature: it would bear no c0!Dpa.rlson :,,:dh that of a being which possessed the se.nse of hea.nng m addition to that of smelling, because the latter woul~ be c~pable of receiving an increased number of agreeable ImpresslOn~, and consequently a proportionably increased degree of happmess. Add the remainmg senses, do you not add. With e!lch the capacity of receiving a thousand agreeable Impresslons, of


which the being we before supposed couM not the least conception! It is plain then, that happiness consists in the reception of agreeable impressions, and that the extent of it must be limited by the strength and number of them which our nature is capable of receivmg. And for this reason it is, that a mind cultinted and enla~d by intellectual pursuits, and softened by those of friendship and affection, IS capable of far more exalted pleasure and satisfaction, than the mere sensualist, whose enjoyment is confined to mere animal gratifications. But, as the senses themselves are passive, and have no power whatever over the circumstances which impress them, it is necessarJ that we inquire into the nature of those which are conduche to happiness. Every man bnngs a peculiar nature into the world with him, wliich differs in different men, n.ot in the kind of its component parts, but in their degree of strength. It is this which forms tJie nomral difterenct's in our dispositions and inclinations; and the question which we have he re proposed to decide, is, in what manner must we so control those dispositions and inclinations, as to produce happiness; or in other words, to bring upon ourselves the greatest number of agreeable and the least number of disagreeable impressions? We reply, by indulging only such of them as are consistent with each other; by preserving and if possible increasing the strength of those which are consistent with each other; and by eradicating all those which, if indulged, would in any way ~uce pain. If men would only give themselves the trouble habitually to bear in mind, that tllat only is right, which in its ultimate consequences is productive of ~; and that only wrong,. which is productive of .evil; and that good and evil are only distinguisbable by the former promoting and the latter injuring the happiness of our sp.ecies, they would continually carry within them a rule for every action of their lives. Evil almost invariably arises from an unrestrained indulgence of some disposition which is in itself innocent, and it is the remembrance of the pleasure which the moderate indul~ nce of it has afforded us, which tempts to the commission of excess. Drunkenness is wrong. because it is inconsistent with the health of the body, and the right use of the mental faculties. Dishonesty is wrong, because It is inconsistent with the seen· 9 rity of those means of enjoyment which, collectivel)', are called wealth. . But it is impossible that any great degree of happlDess can arise to us from the consistent use of our faculties, unl~ss our dispositions be sufficiently strong to afford ple~ure lD. the gratification of them. Satiety, therefore, ought m all thmgs to be avoided. 'Ve cannot enjoy our f~d If w~ eat so frequentlyas never to know what hunger IS) and ~f we ~vou1d enjoy any thing, we ought caref~lly to avoltl.the like sa!lety: That It is necessary to ha»plll;ess to eradicate all dlspos~tions, which if indulged wouhl m any ~vay pr~uce pam, IS too obvious to require an argument. I! IS c~rtam that to have desires and to deny ourselves the gratificatioJl of them, must be painful to us. . But we frequently hear it observed, ~hal happines~ comnst>! ratherin the pursui~ tha~ in the poss~slOn of any.obJec.t. The truth is, tbat as society IS now constituted, man IS tramed to be any thing but a rational being. He has never y~t been taultht to under8tand his own pature, and to act. conslst~ntly with it: he has never yet been ~ught to s~ek tor h~p~mess where it is to be found: his faculties are umformly mIsd.irec~ed and the consequence is, that he exhausts his en~rgIes In th~ pursuit of that, which, if he had only consulted hIS reason for a moment, he would have seen could afford him no real satisfaction when possessed. Look at our public seminaries, and say if in gene~l t~ere be a singIe rational direction~iven to the human faculties In any of t~m ! Is not the juvemle mind continually led to~he contt! mplation of war and bloodshed? Thousands from Hns cause alone are led to embrace a mili!My life: ambition is ge.nerat~d 1n the human breast and man IS led to seek for happmess lD the destruction of his fellow-men! and hav:ing s~n~the vig~ur of his life in this career, he at length exclaIms, "It IS all vamty and vexation of spirit!" • But the greater portion are led. to seek for !\appiness lD the pursuit of wealth; and never havmg been tramed to ma~e a right use of it, it commonly happens that they convert It to the destruction of their own peace. . . . But the opinion that happiness consists in the purs.ult than in the possession of ~n object, IS foun~led lD error. 'Vhlch of us, when overtaken With bl1n!!:er or thirst, ever found m?re pleasure in the pursuit than in the. enjoymen.t of food? Which of us, if by chance exposed to t1~e mclemencles of ~he weather, drenched with rain, or froz.en wlth cold, ever experienced more


10 pleasure in the search of a fireside than in the enjoyment of It? or which of us ever yet sought for pleasure in the performance of a kind action, and was disappointed? Away then with the erroneous notion, that happiness exists only in idea. Let us in future seek it where reason tells us 'it may be found, Let us endeavour to place a right estimate on tlungs, and no longer amuse our minds with the pursuit of bubbles which burst and disappoint us. Since then, happiness, the end and object of every human pursuit, cannot be obtained until OUi' natural wants are satisfi· ed, we will next inquire into the nature of them. The desires, or wants, of man, are of two distinct kinds. 1st. Those which belong to him as an animal. 2d. Those which belong to him as an intellectual being. And these may be further divided into two other kinds. 1st. Those whicll are burn with him, and are inseparable from his nature. 2d. Those which he acquires from education, habit, example, or the influences of sUi'rounding circumstances; and of these it is greatly important that he acquire such only, as are consistent with those implanted in him by nature. Of the latter kind we shall say nothing, because tliey cannot be ,defined, in consequence of their depending solely upon the nature of the circumstances which surround us. But of the former it is plain, that man requii'es, as an animal, food, clothing, and habitation; that his circumstances enable him to provIde for his family, if he have one; that he be enauled to do this with moderate efforts, and without the slightest fear of those efti)l1s ever failing to accomplish the desired ouject. Bodily health and stren~th are also essential to happiness, which are incom~ tible With immoderate labour, and gl'eat mental anxiety. fhe intellectual desires of man are all comprehended in tl1e desire of knowledge. Nature has given this to all, but before we can become intellectually hapry' it is necessary that the seeds of intellect, or our desire 0 knowledge, be cultivated, otherwise it will lie dormant, and be of little use. The great object of human pursuits is to supply these wants. Let us then in'luire how far the present pursuits of Olen are ~alculated to supply them; for if they be already supplied in a reasonable and proyer manner, what necessity can there be for the Dew order 0 things proposed by Mr. OwEN? First then, we beg leave to solicityMlr attention to the existinO' Commercial arrangements Qf Society; the great object of which is to supply mankind with rood, clothing, and babitatioB. 11 A GB:NBl'lAL va:w 01' SOODlTT. EVERY necessary, convenience, and comfort of life, is obtaine( l by human lauour. 1st. By labour in cultivating the earth itself. 2d. By labour in preparing, making fit, and appropriating the produce of the earth to the uses of life. ,Sd. By labour in dilitl'ibuting the produce of both ~e forme~ kmds ('If labour. Thes(~ al'e the three grand occupations of hfe; to which may be added three ot~ers. The government or protection of society; the office of amusing and instructing mankind; and the meclieol profession. Every member of the community, who is not engaged in one of the two former c:l~e8 of occupation is an UNPRODUCTIVE member of society. Every unproductive member of society is a D~RECT TAX upon the productive classes. Every unproduc~ve member of sucie~y is also an USELh'SS membe~ of society, unless he gives an EQUIVALENT for that wblch he conllUmCs. These are truths 110 plain and 80 important, that they must be assented to by every rational mind, which considers them but for a moment. How then can we better judge of the pursuits of men, than by bringing them to the test of these truths? \Ve now solicit your earnest attention to a general view of society, being the whole population of ~e country in 1812For infOl"ffiation on this subject we are mdebted to a Yer,' valuable and copious statistical work, published in 1814 by Colquhoun, on the Wealth and Resources of the llritiah Empire. It is. not, of course, to be supposed, thap.C.olquIlOUO'S statements are entirely free from error; but'h 11 the principlu on which we are ac~ng which ~e wish to exhibit: and if OlJr quotations from thIS work be mcorrect by many .nillionll, ,still they will be quite near enough to show the nature of the present system.

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....·rom t~is hstimate it ~ppears, that the united incomes of all 4asses ~_; e co:nllll~mty amol:lnted in the year 1812, to ,30,521,:" _t•. ~Ve will next inquire bv what portion of the

-ommu~lty tillS Immense property was created; and b annex~~

th~l mCfmes ~f the producers, we shaH be furni8he~ with a 0t~ra y c ear vIew of the principles on which we are now ac mg. PROD.UCTIVE CLASSES ! Numl>cr of AO'O'reO'ate Averaged- injNo.* Indh·iduals. ."' '" comes of the mcomes. whole. 26 3,154,142 33,596,795 }1l1. 52 400,000 8,100,000 40 4,343,389 49,054,752 -- 7,897,531 90,551,547 T~e above constItute the whole of the roductive classes; and, consequently, by their labGnr was prod.uced the whole income of the country, amounting to - - - - 450 521 3721 Except that. produced by paupers and pension- ' , en, amountmg to - 4,291,000 ~duct which leaves - - - - ~os:2l being very nell;rly ,fifty!our pounds a year for ;;:h' ~an' wo~andand child, 10 the productive classes' of which they H:el~NEat;I;';~~ po.unds: being but a s:Uall trifle more O'~N LABOUR!!!ARr OF THE PRODUCE OF THEIR But to the sum they did receive, viz: - 9 Add the b bl f O,551,547l. Jlro a e sum 0 money_ which is paifl to the useles~ classes, which mIght, with facility, be ~avcd m future, if it were at all neceS8ary, whIch we shall presently show is not the case,·· • - - - 217,951,788 308,503,3351. being v.ery nea~ly forty pounds a year for each man woman and child: an l~come a.mply suffiCIent to furnish an ~bundaTlt . Referrmg to the foregoing Tabk 17 supply of every necessary, convenience, amI comfort of life; and about double that of tne master farmers in 1812. And let it be particularl; remembered, that in this estimate, upwards of one quarter 0 the annual produce of the labour of the COUIltry is allowed to pay the expenses of government, direction, supe!intendence, and di~tribution.. Can. any rational man possIbly suppose that porbon to be lD~UffiClent?* It may be as well here to assure those, who think with Mr. Colquhoun, that" Poverty is the source of wealth, and that without it, there could be no riches, no refinement, no comfort," that his argument on that subject will be most satisfactorily answered in the course of these lectures. In the present estimate, however, we have not calculated upon any increase in the produce of the country, our sole object being to show how the wealth now created IS distributed; consequentll it would appear that the supposed increase in the incomes 0 the productive classes, must create an equal decrease ill those of others; but this is not the case. By the

  • The chief object of the foregoin~ table is to show how the produce

of the country is now tlistrihuted. There is a much greatcr difference in the incomes of the different classes, than is there seen at first sight; owing to the difference in the number of pel'5ons in the families of each class. For example; it appears that til" income of each individual in the produetive classes was 111. in the year 1312; llnd the income of each individual in the Royal Family, only 2,9201. In the lorID"r instance, however, the average numher of persom in each family may be about four anJ a quarter, in the latter about fifty; the domestics being included. Consequently, in the former instance an income of ahout 471. ·may be at the disposal of the head of the family; in the latter instance an income of about 146,0001. In this case one income is abont three hundred times as large as the other. But there is much less difference in this respect when we leave the higher classes. The averaged number ef pel'5ons in each liunily is est.imated among the Nobility at 25; among the Bisheps and Baronets at about 15; among Knights and Esquires at about 10; and after tllis it appears to vary from ahout 4 to 6. Nothing, perhaps, can be more difficult than to ascertain the actual proportion which the labouring classes receive of the produce of their hands. It is highly probable that we are giving the present system far more credit for its lenity than it really deserves, when we accuse it of depriving the useful of society of only four-fifths of the produce of their labour. By some it has been estimated that they rccei"e only a twenty-fourth, by others a fifteenth part; at all events, it is very certain, that we are much within bounds in estimating it at one-fifth. But as our chief o~ject is to explain the principles of the present system, we are quite content to stand upon ground the least advantageous; and we prefer it to any other, hecausl' it will enable us to lay before our readers such estimates, in support of our opinions, as we think are calculated to carry conviction to the mind of every rational man, who will take the trouble to examine them.


propose~ new arrangements, the circumstances whIch limit proi:luctl(~n would b~ entirely abolished; and in wnsequence, every tlung de.servmg the name of wealth would instantly become accessible to all. The circumstance to which we allude will be fully ~xplaine~ in the present lecture. We shall now bnefty notice each· class of the community separately;. a!1~ shall state our reasons for denominating ~,437,917 mdmduals, .that ~s, about ?ne-tb~rd of the population, useless m~mbers of society. It IS partIcularly desirable, how<:ver, t~~t Jud~ent be suspended, as to the correctness o~ thiS deCISion, untIl the ~hole subject be explained; when it

Ill be seen that the question rests excluSively upon this point:

Whether or not one quarter of the annual produce of the s~fficient t? pay the necessary expenses of Government, direction, supenntendence, and distnbution." r.Nos. 1,2 and 3. ~he King, and others of the Royal Family. Kmgs are unproductIve members of society. 'Ve !'ank them ~mongst the useful cI~ses; but '!e leave It for others to say 10 what manner they give an equivalent for that which they t.~onsume. N.os.4, 5,6,7 and 8. Nobility, Gentry, Knights, Esquires, Ladles, an~ Gentlemen. All these are unproductive members of ~oclety; and as they give no equivalent whatever for that whIch they consume, we cannot number them amon t tfJ.e useful cI~~es. But let no one attach blame, or feel ~e shghtest hostdlty t?wards these persons. It is not the men, but .~e .sy~tem which we condemn; and this we do wish to exhibit In Its true colours. It has been the misfortune not the fault, of the higher classes, to be born under an u~just system; and to be ~ucated to follow it; and by far the greaterJllU" t of them are Ignorant of the basis on which thexstand. J:ios. 9 and 10. State and Rev~nue: persons in civIl offices vanous. All these are unproductive members ?f society, and the greater part of them are not useful: for, 10 addition to the.msands ,!lio are paid for doing nothing, thousands more are p~ud for dOll~ ",,:orse than nothing, yiz. for preventing mankin~ from enJoJlne; advantages, winch are naturally within theIr reach; to which class belong all persons connected with prohibitory restrictions. Add to them many thousands more whose occupations arise solely out of the present faulty system of commerce. We have been moderate, however and haye put down one half of the persons in civil offices va~ious und;r the head of useful members of society. ' ~os. 11 and 12. Army. The vcry name soldier is a dis 19 grace to human nature. It is a name which will be contem porlJ.Ileous with the division of interest in the empl()yment of ca.pital; and it is a name which will one day be forgotten. The honour which is attached to the profession is fallacious. It is right to defend ourselves, even at the risk of our lives; but there can be no honour where there is no honesty; and where, we ask, is the honesty of invading the rights of others? And this must be done before they can be defended. Men are apt to say, "What so honourable as to defend our country?" They do not saJ, "What so honourable as to invade the rights of the peaceful, and to carry misery and destruction amongst our fellow-creatures ?" As we wish our estimate to be moderate, we put down one half of the military amongst the useful classes; although, by the new arrangements, an anny ana navy of the whole population would be at all times ready to defend their country, if necessary, while every soldier would, in times of peace, maintain hiniself. Nos. 13 and 14. Navy. For the foregoing reasons we put down one half of these amongst the useful. No. 15. Half pay, &c. Amongst this class it appears that there are many superannuated, and some widows and children of officers. It is hard to estimate what number of them might be brought into useful employments. We shall, therefore, not calculate upon any reduction.

Nos. 16 and 17. Chelsea, Chatham, and other pensioners. We pass tllese as the half pay list, for the same reasons.

No. 18. Eminent Clergymen. It appears that the number of Clergymen in the country, with their families and domestics amounts to 116 thousands. On the subject of religion we shall say nothing here, but it will not pass unnoticed in another place.

No. 19. Lesser Clergymen. These are the men who do the work of the church.

No. 20. Law: Judges, Barristers, Attorneys, Clerks, &c. We trust that this dass, without a single excertion, willultimately be sUl,'erseded. We .know ""r.y wei that this will appear impOSSIble to those who have been born and educated under the 'Present system of irrationality, and who have never suspected It to be such. But we also "know that it only requires the will of the people of this country, to render every thing deserving the name of wealth, accef,sihle to all its inhabitants. We know that men may be truilll'(1 to hve toO'cther in peace, Whel) all were thus Furroundeu wilh ;;,v'rabunSance. We believe that punishment, so far from having the etfect of


pre.venting crime, has an invariable tendency to increase it. We believe that the past _al~d present experience of every society has proved the h'uth of tillS; and that the maO'uitude of crime fl'equently keeps pace with the magnitude of p~lishment, We ~nllw that there is but one power by which man can be broutrht mto complete subjection, which is by treating him with IN~A' ]UAllLE KINDNESS, and exhibiting to his understanding, without anger, the ellects. which bad actions pro.duce in society; and we know that tlus mode of treatment, If persevered in, can never fail to produce the desired effects• ."T~ ther~fore say of every man who comes under the denonunahon of lawyer, that we hope and doubt not that he will shortly cease to derive his income from the misfortunes of his fellow -men. No. 21. Physic: Physicians, Surgeons, Apothecaries, &c. A.system of combined interests would not, perhaps, reduce thiS c1as~ of the ~ommunity immediately; but that it wlluld do so ultimately, I~ proportIOn to the population, there can be no doubt. ExceSSive luxury and extreme poverty are alike enemies to health. The hea~th of the body IS greatl.y dependent on the health of the mllld; and there is no doubt that by in~roducing.a syst~m which w01;1111 .abolish every thi~g; re~ semblIng pecumary dIstress, and With It the calamitous eflt.ets of extreme poverty, as well as thousands of anxious cares and fears amongst all classe~, bodily health would be nationally Improved. A very consIderable number also of those inlh" iduals, who cannot exist a month together without the aid of medicine, are indebted, for their debilitated constitutions, to irregularities. in early ~ife; which it is greatly improbable they would have IIldulged In, had thev not been sUITounded with temptation. We number all medical men among the useful members of society. No. 22. Artists, &c. There would be no decrease of these pursuits under the new system. The country could far better afford to encourage them than it has ever yet been able. No. 23. Agriculture, Mines, &c. Freeholders of the better s?rt. The~e are all unprodu~tive members of society. They glv~ n~ eqUIvalent for that ~hlch they consume. They obtain theIr mcomes from rent, mterest, and the employment of capital. Nos. 24 and 25. Lesser Freeholders and Farmers. The occupation of these two are, in many instances, the same. They are chiefly the directors and superintendents of cultivation.

\.lthough unproductive, they areneverthdess necessary

members of society, but only in a 3ttjficienl number to d~l'eet and Bupel'intend cultivation. At pl'esent,thel'e are three tImes as many of them as are necessary for tillS purpose. At least one-half, therefore, are useless members of socIety. No. 26. Labourers in Agriculture, Mines, &c. We shall notice these last. Nos. 27 and 28. Eminent Merchants. These men are un~ productive. If they give any equivalent .for ~t which tl~ey COl\!mme it is by conlfucting exchanges With foreIgn countrIes. There a:e at present ten times as many of them as are necessary to do this. Three quarters of them, at least, are not useful members of society. No. 29. Persons employing pro~essional.8kill and capital, as EnO'ineers, Surveyors, Master BUIlders ot Houses, &c. Under!=> the new arrangements one <Iuarter of these men would be amply sufficient to do the work of the whole. No. 30. Per~ons employing caJ.>ital in ~uild,ingand RepairinO' Ships, &c. Persons employmg carltal ]s only another na~e for persons living by the inte~est 0 mon~y. These men are unproductive, and are only use!ul as 8uperlllt.endents; and this they do chiefly by deputy. \\ e shall denommate one balf of them usefuI. No. 31. Ship-owners, letting ships for frei~ht All these again are unproductive; and the whole ur theIr lllcomes may be saved by tile useful classe.s. ,. No. 32. Aquatic Labourers In the Merchants ServiCe, Fisherres, Rivers, Canals, &c. It appears from ~ fOl'mer statement in Colquhoun's w~rk, that the pr~fits derIved from die whale and seal fisheries amounted, III the year 1812, to 600,000/. after all expenses were paid. ,Of the m~n e!1'ployed in these fisheries, an lIlllUCnSe number nllght be faIrly mc1uiled amon!!'!!t the useless members of society, because a great part of the!=>produce of their labour is ~ppropriated to a created necessity, viz.-The oil consumed III shops, &c. for the ~le of goods by night, which ought to be s~ld by day•.Bu.t !lavmg no means of estimating what propOl·tlOn of these IIldlvlduals are so employed we include tIlem all amongst the useful. No. 33. Manufacturers employing capitals in all b~nches. These men are unproductive; and ~re only useful as ~brectc~ and superintendents of manufactories: a great deal of their work is done by deputy, and there ~an be no doubt that onethird of them would be amply sufficICn~. No. 34. Principal Warehousemen sellIng by wholesale. The new sYstem will not require one-tenth part of the warehouse-


them useful. .Nc.>' ~5. Shopkeepers and Tradesmen retailing goods. Certain ,It IS, that these men are not unproductive, for never upon the tace of the earth, was there any thing half so productive of deception and falsel~(XK!, follX and, extravagance, slavery of the corporeal, and pl"OstItutwn of the mtellectual faculties of man as. the present system of In these particulars cel'~ tamly, tradesmen arc productive enough, but not so accordinO' to our ~ormer definition. .And that they do not give to societj an eqUIvalent for t~a~ wh~ch they consume is certain. A fourth 01: fitth part tlln~ ~s expended in decorating their sh0i' WIJ.l~Ows, that .IS, ID ,spOllmg goods, and at least half of it in waltmg a~ut tOl' their customers or doing nothing useful. If &l!Y man Will walk thl"Ough London streets and use his eyes he will want n? arguments to. convince him, that thel'e are: at least, two-thirds more of thiS class than there is any necessity for. . The number of them. is limited IlDt to those who are really requared to transact the busmess of a town in a rational and proper manner, but to those who can get a livin'" in it. This eircums~ nce alone, as it necessarily arises out of the present state of soc!ety, ought ~o lead ev.ery thinking man to suspect that there IS some radica~ error IJ.l our presen.t sJstem of business. How much longer wIll mankmd be so wdfully blind as not to know that all trade~-JM:0ple, from the merchant to the applewoman, are mere dz~tnbutol'a of wealtlt, who are paid for tlteir tr~uble by tile '(thour oftlwae wllo cr({tle it? How much 10nO'er ~11l they' ~ot know that it. is just a8 absurd, justas extravag-d~t, r/(hc~lous, fo~ sOCiety to employ three tl'adesmen when one IS suffiCient). as It would be for the landlord of an inn to e!"ploy three walb:I'S when one would be enouO'h to attend to his company. e No. S?', Persons employing capital as Tailors, Mantua-rna~ ers, Millmers, &c. As the.l·e would be a prodigious increase ~ the employment of these classes under the new system, we Include all of them, amongst the useful of society; although there are far more ~f them than can obtain employment in the ~sent 8tate of tlungs. No. 57. Clerks and Shopmen. A system of combined interest would require comparatively but very few of these "'entlemen; for at least half of them better employment mus~ be found. No. 58. Innkeepers and Publicans. Of this class one-half will be more than sufficient under the new system, and they under entirely different arrangements. N6.39. Umbreila and Parasol Makers, Silk Lace Workers, ·Embroidercrs, Domestic Spinsters, Clcarstarchers, La,undresses, Mangl~rs, &c. O~ these there wo~ld be no reduction. No. 40. ArtIsans, Handicrafts, Mechamcs, and Labourers. 'Vc shall notice these last, with No. 26. No. 41. Hawkers, Pedlars, &c. Tilese men are productive on1y of mischief, and are of no use on earth. . Nos. 42 and 45. Universities and SchQols, for the education of youth of both sexes. There are too few of this class. No. 44. Clergym~n rCe~la~ly' ordained, dissenting from the established church, mcludmg Itinerant preachers. These men at least endeavour to give an equivalent for that which they consume. No. 45. Theatricals. The new system woul(l have no other effect on this class, than that of offering t9.its poorer members an easier and more respectable mode oT hte. No. 46. Persons keep'ing Houses for Lunati.cs. I~ is only . wonderful that the existmg arrangements of !M!clety drive comparatively so few men mad. It IS very certain that there are not too many of this clas~. No.47. Lunatics. Although we cannot call these unfortupate individuals useful members of society, we must not rank them amon!!St the number of those who may be called into ti e . useful occupation.

No. 48. Persons confined in Prisons for Debt. Here is a glorious ,specimen of the present system. We th'st put it into the power of 17,500 individuals to g~t. i!ltO debt; !lnd then Y~I~ them into prison, to prevent the POSSlblhty of ~ettmg out oj d.

No. 49. Vagrants, Gipsies, Rogues, Vagal>onds, Thieves, Coiners of Base Money, Prostitutes, &c. Number 308,-471. These are the deplorable effec!s,of the present sJstem•. Preventive regulations would anmhllate the vel'y names of these classes.

No. 50. Miscellaneous. As this class is of so various a nature we shall not notice it further.

No. 51: ~aupers pl'oduci!1g from their ow~ ~ab?u~ 5,871,000.1. and recelvmg from .parochlal rates a~out SIX mllhons.. As It appears that a consulerabl,e projerty IS created by t~lIS c~ass, tIley cannot all be denommate useless memhers ot society; we therefore estimate three quarters of them umler that head. Before WP. procted to notice the prlJlluctive class~s, we would again observe, that we do Mt wlsh to lay any partIcular lltress


.,. the for~ing observ~tions, as they apply to each class separately. We merely Wish to convey some general idea of the ..wmer, and amongst what classes tlie produce of the labour ~f the in~ustriousis now squandered. The nature of the sub. Ject a~mlts of no accurate estimate being made in detail; but eollect•.,ely we fear no refutation, as tile question simply is ~"Vhet!ler or not one quarter of the produce of the coun~ IS s~fficlent to. pay the necessarl expenses of government, dl' rectlOn, supermtendence and distribution?" Nos. ~6 and 40. Labouring I!eople, employed in Agriculture, MlDes and Minerals: ArtIsans, Handicrafts, Mechanics and Labourers employed in Manufactories, Buildings and works of every kind. ' We n~w come to the working classes, the whole of which we have mcluded amongst the useful members of society; al. though nu.mbers of them, strictly speaking, are not so. It may at fi~st sight appear strange to denommate an industrious workmg m~n an useless member of society; but a near view of the case Will show vel'y plainly, that in many instances he is com~lIed to become so by the prodigious inequality of wealth. When a man becomes possessed of a large fortune, (we now IIp.eak o( men as they generally act,) whose former situation in lite was hU~b!e, ~e soon be!!iIlS to suspect that his house is too small and mSlgmfican.t f~rhim; he accordingly purchases his country' seat; and thmkmg that a house in town would be convement a!1d agreeable, he takes one there also. He for~ merly kept hiS servant of all work, he now keeps his servants of all sorts of. work, and many of no ;work at all; his land s~eward and hiS house steward, his butler and under hutler, Ius valet, cOl~.chman, grooms, footmen, cooks, confectioners; an~ the long hst of housekeepers, ladies' maids and their maids, asSistants, attendants, &c. &c. How do men of large fortunes us~ally spend their money? Do they, for the most part, spend it ratIonally? or do they not spend a very considerable, if not the greater part of it in splendour, show, and luxury? Look at the cost .of a nobl~man's house and furniture; look at the expense of parks and pleasure grounds; look at the expense of his carriages, horses, and dogs; add to these the immense cost of fen~ale dress; and all the minutire of luxury; such as forced fruits and vegetables, .and th~ absurd supplies of table luxury 10 a general ~nse. Fish, for mstance, cannot be eaten if it be cheap; and, 10 s~ort, no food is goo~ enough for the miO'hty of the land, lmless It be bought at an Immensepl·ice. A11 this, we are told, "makes gOOd for trade !" and, under the present 25 .system, so it does. But, can any rational being suppose ~t society is foqnded on right principles, when we find that Its efteds are to render luxury and extravagance allvantageous? nave we really brought our minds to suppose, that the more we squander the more we shall have? Are we for ever ~o be told, that the man who is spending thousands in the grattfica. tion of some absurd whim, IS doing good, becaus~ he cU'culates money amongst tradesmen, and because he furnIshes .employment for a number of labouring men? R.very labounng man, 1'10 emJ>loyed, ?S an useless member of sO~lety,for the produce of his labour IS useless; and the effect IS a direct tax on the productive labourer usefully e~ployed. Thi~ ~tate of thin~ will have an end; the system IS as weak as It IS absurd and destructive. It appears to us to be tolerably clear, that he is. an. u~eles!l m~mber of society, the produce of whose labour IS m Itself useless: but we will examine this point a little fur~er:7 there is nothing like instances; and we will take one 111 thiS case which wiII furnish us with an important view of the pres~nt state ofsociety. . The manufacture of lace ill now brought to great ~rfectIon in this country. In some instances a single dress is worth 100 guineas or more. That is, it ~ay re~l1y have cost ~ much of the time and labour of an mdustnous man, that It w.ould not pay his employer a reasonable profit to sell it for a less sum. ~ow are we to consider the maker of suchrdress~8 an useful member of society, beca1!se by )lis labou~ 8. fami~y IS provided with the necessanes of life dunng the tIme he IS so employed? Most certa?n~y not! The laee dr~88 is the produce of his labour, and It IS useless. It can neither be eaten nor drank; and it forms no part of I!sl'ful wearing ap'parel. .It is made only to please the fancy and to be looked at. It Will not compare, in point of real utility, with a penny loaf or a glass of cold water. The provisions that the maker ?f it has been consumin"', the clothes that he has been wearmg, and the house that he has been occupying, are tIre produce of .oth~r mells' labour, not of his; and this useless, senseless playthmg IS the a1"tijice, b.r whi~h he is el~abled to supply hunself with those necessaries wInch he requires, from the laOOul· of othe" ; who receive in exchange for them-what? A lace dress? /to. carriage? An elegant mansion? No! none of these. A sIDaIl sum of money, sufficient only to enable them to re-purchase about one-liJ}h 1)((I·t of the p1"oduce of their own labour, or of the elluivafent lauoul" of others. 'Vhat, ,\~ would ask,.


does the purchaser of such a dress give for it? He give!! one hundred !ineaS' taken perhaps by. the rent of land out of. ti,e produce 0 the industry of the agNcultural [abourer, he glVl~~ of that w lich is strictly IllS own, not/ling! No! I)ot the value of a straw. And what does the labourer give for his scant, pittance? He gives the rernainingfiflh of the produce of hIS Industrr, of which he has not been defrauded; and why? Not because anv lll"oteetion is afforded to it by the existing arrangements of society: bu4 because withou~ \t he coultl 1!Ot e~en exist to be the slave of others. The rich nian, who, In pomt of fact, pays nothing, rec.eives every ,thing: w.hile the p'oor man, who, in point of fact, pays every tiling, receIves notl)mg! We put it to the candourof every hunest man, whether s~c.h a state of society as this t9 be preserved! 'Vhether It LS not at variance with everyprineiple of common honesty! We willingly admit, that the evil originates in no man, nor class of men. We readily allow that it would be extremely unjust to feel the slightest hostility towarus ~ny man, who happens ~ be placed by circumstances over whlc1~ he had no .control, In the situation of aD oppressor. But while we acquIt the man, we condemn the system, and say of it, "that its foundation stone is INJUSTICE." The truth is, that it ill not crime but ig~ornnce which has brought U8 into this condition. We have hltllerto overl!!oke~ all naturnllrinciples in the formation. of our customs and .msbtutions an have conducted our affaO's by chance. ThIS has heaped'error upon eFror, until ~t h!ls literally over~hehned us witll confuiion, and created eVils mnumerable, which have no existence in nature. It is quite time that this state of things had an end; we hope, and doubt not, that its end is near. From what has been stated, it is evident tha.t numbe';J of labouring peoplt' capable of being useful members of sO,clety. are employed us~les!illy; and this is not confined t~ OlIe kmd of occupation or to another. The carpenter, the bricklayer, the smith the nainter the ""'azier, the plumber, and every other , r-: , @l' • 1 b description of labourers are, In greater or ess num ers, continually employed in building hot houses, green hou~e~, (~eco. rative buildmgs, and i.nnumernbly other ~qual1y useful thmgs, the whole and sole purpose of which i~ to p'lease the fancy, to gratify the whims, and to supply the Imagm~ry wan~~ of the wealthy. This state of things could !i0t poss.lbly be, If wealth were equally divided. A man whose mcoma IS moderate, cannot attord Immoderate luxuries. He, w~ose inc0l!'e is ~nly 500/. a year, cannot spend 5,000/. a year II) expensive follIes; 27 and the productive classes could not be uselessly employed if none could afford so to employ them. Thousands more of the productive classes are employed, in supplying necessities, created by the present system, which have no existence in nature or rationality. Such for example, as shop fronts, and various other like follie~ resort.ed to i.n the disposal of goods. Those who are unacquamted With busmess, have little Idea what immense sums of money are annually squandered in this way. Such things are, indeed necessary to the present system. They arise from exces<;ive competition in trade. but of what real use are they? (These mentioned.) The use of them is to destroy goods of all descriptions; thereby compelling the venders of them to obtain larger profits on their sales, than they would otherwise requirt', to make up for the loss of bad stock so occasioned. We trust that it has now been made sufficiently plain that numbers, even of the productive classes, are compelled by the present system to become useless members of society. THE OCCUPATIONS OF MEN CONSIDERED, AS AFFECTING THEIR INDIVIDUAL HAPPINESS. Having endeavoured to convey some general idea of the manner In which the produce of the country is now distributt'd, and to show how far men, .as society is ~ow constituted, l\re useful to each other. we Will next mqUlre how far they are 'Useful to themselves; or, in other words, how far their preSent occupations are calculated to promote their own individual happiness.

In the consideration of this part of our Ilubject we shall not again notice each distinct class of occupation separately, but' shall speak of them in more general terms.

Saying nothing about kings, who are surrounded from their cradles, with circumstances which compel them to look upon grandeur as the ne plus ultra of human excellence, let us pass on to the higher classes. aod next to the miserable wretch who scarcely knows by what means to support existence, no set of beings can perhaps be found more worthy of our commiserntion, than, what are called, the independent classes. Let us examine, first, their independence.

We now come to a subject, which we shall treat most unceremoniously; we therefore beg, that whatever be said of it will be looked upon as applying to the system only, and not to the individuals composing it.

The persons who compose these Independent classes, are


Dependent upon two things: first, upon the indUltry of th~il' fellow-creatures: second, upon injustice, which enables them to command it. That they are dependent upon the industrI of their fellowcreatures is plain. The food they eat, the clothes that cover them, the houses they inhabit, the furniture they contain, the ornaments that decorate them; in short, every thing, except the air they breathe, is supplied to them by the labour of men's hands. Nay more! so £ompletely helpless are they, that they al'e dependent upon others for the very adjusting of their dress. They are dependent upon the baker for their bread, and lIpon the butcher for their meat. They are dependent upon tlie brick-layer for their houses, and upeu the u.pholsterer for the furnishing of them.-They are dependent uJX'n the tailor and upon the dress-maker fill' their clothes; and tlpon their valets and maids to put them on.* If there is a name which, better than any other, will describe this class of men, it is the word DEPENDENTS. But, say they, although we are fully aware, that, strictly speaking, we al'e helplessness itself, we live upon our property. This we positively deny, and affirm, on the contrary, that they live on ilie property. of others. As this is simpl] a question of fact, it will easily be determined by an inc\ulrY into the nature of property. The foundation of all property is U.BOUR, and there is no other just foundation for It. In the rudest ages of antiquity, a man who had killed an animal for food would look upon it as his property. Should another take it ii'mn him, it would be looked upon as an act of iuju~tice, and the attempt to do it would instantly be resisted. But we need not go into ages past for examples, for in every society, labo~r is the .ex~lusive Sl1Urce of propelty, consequently the exclus~ve foundat~on of it•. I.f a man can, i~ any case, sal,truly" this is mine," surely It IS, when the thlDg spoken of IS the produce of the I~bour of his hands. Is a mall's right haud his own? We deny that it is more so than the produce of the labour of it. It being evident, then, that labour is the sole foundation of propertv, and that, in fact, all propt:rtl is nothing more than accumulated labour; the questlon winch seems to arise is, .. Do the persons we are speaking of consume the produce of other person's labour, or do they consume the pl'Ouuce of their • See "Metaphorical Sketches of the Old and New Systems," by A. Combe. It W8I not Ilt hand when this W81 written, or hia _rds wol1W un been UHd jp Ule above arl;umeot. 29 own?" They consome the former; ,but ,th.ey give an equivalenttfor it in the shape of ,money! willch I~ Itself accumulat~d labour or the representative of It. But IS that money theirs to e:iv~? Is IT the produce of thei.r labour, or of other people)' s? What equivalent do they gl~e for IT? THJo;Y GIVE NO EQUIVALENT FOR IT: and we Will clearly show to those, whose minds are not influenced by long existmg custom, that the independent classes of society. are solely depende!lt up(~n injustice for their daily bread. These persons obta~n their incomes, for the most part, from the rent of land and mterest of money. Let us examine these a little. Iu the first place we deny, that, strictly sp'!aking, aJ.1y l!ian can be a proprietor of land at all. The earth IS the nabltatlOn, the natural mheritance of all mankind: of ages present and to come; a habitation belonging to no man in particular, but to every man; and one in which atl have an equal ri.,.ht to dwell. Ask any land-owner what right he has to the land 'he possesses, and he will produce a collection of parchments, to prove, that from God knows when, the property he holds !las been in the. ~ssession of his ancestors. But how came Ius ancestors by It? He answers bJconques.t, or ~y taking poss~ssion. But neither of these could make It then' pruperty. lhel'e are but three ways, in which it is possible to become rightly possessed of property. The first is by mll;king it; the second by purchasing it; the third is by donation Twm anothel', whose pmperty It was. Now as It is clear that neither our pl'eseut land-owners nor their ancestors did create the earth; and as it is as cle;r, that he who did create it, neither gave it to them in particular, nor sold it to them; i~ is impossi?le tha~ they, or any men living, can be th~ propnetors of, an ~nch of it: but right to the l!Be anci pO~8e~.,wn o~ l~nd .conslst~ III !taving- property vpon It: and thiS IS, a d~stmctlOn of Immense importance as regards our present mqUiry. To elucidate our opinion, we will suppose that a number or men were to take up t1~eir a~e on some previously' uninhabited island. On their al'l'lval there, each would feel all equal right to p..·utake of whatever fruits he mig!lt fin~ upou it. No one would look upon the un-gntltei"eci frUit as hIS property; but each would consider that fruit his own, which he had taken the trouble to collect. He would feel and know, that he had more rio-ht to it than any of his fellows. By the same rule none of these men would think of calling the uncuitivated earth his property; and even though some tine were to call a portion of it his, he would only be laughed at, while the


whole of it remained in a -state of nature. But, let him eulti. tNIIe that land; let him clear it and plough it; let him sow it with seed, and let that seed produce a crop; and ,vho would 1&" of that crop h it i~ not his?" Everyone would feel con1IC1OUS that it was as much hi8 as the gathered fruit. It would be known that it was by his labour that it was produced; and who could- say of such a crop, "/, wlw Ir.ave done NOTHBIG'totIUIrd8 it, production, am as mucl. it. proprietor, (J8 he, by tMho,e EXCLUSIVE lahourit was produced?" B.r what right then, we ask, does any man consider himself eDtitledto rent for the use of land? To call himself the proprietor of the land itself is perfectly absurd, and as preoo...nptuous u if he were to say, "the sun is mine, and you shall pa1' me a rent because he shines ullon you." The land itself II of no value until labour be apphed to it. It is its produce only *bat ia valuable. What does the landlord do towards the ~llction of it? lie does nothing! Then we say that no part ... it whatever can be his. Did he make the land itself? No! did be prepare it for the seed? No! Did he furnish the seed and ICMter it~ No! Did he cause the seed to take root, and bring ferthacrop? No! Wu it at his command that the sun made it te ripen? No! Did he gather it into the barn? No! Anti did not these, collectively, produce the corn? Yes! Where then is the justice ofhis claim to a portion of it, since labour is the exclusive jf1tllUlatioA ofproperty, imd ainu it tlJ(J8 produced,exclusively, by lM~rolot¥men? ~hate«Juivalent.doeshe give for that portion of It which he chums as hiS? Regives NO EqUITALENT WHA.TEVEa, and there is NO JUSTICE WHATEVER in his pos~ himself of it. It was exclusively produced by the labow Of others, and it is EXCLUSIVELY THEIR PROPERTY. But the worlcf says it is his! Yes!-What has made it so? 7Ie pt1II1er and cwlom of obtaining it! In this, and in thi. "lone, consiats his tide to it; and jf this be admitted as a just wllndatiola of property. is it not at once allowing that any thing is justice which happens to be law; and that, as to a natural tu.ndation for property, there is no such thing? But suppose a man has entitled himself to the possession of land by cultivation. and that at some futare time he wishes to dispose of it, is he not entitled to some remuneration for hav~ iJI8 improved it? Certainly! Of what quality was the land wlien lie became po!l8e8sed of it? Of 8ueh a quality! Of what quality is it now r Of such another quality! Then here is the .remuneration he ought to receive; viz. the value of that quantity of luallure, and of that quantity of labour which would be 81 llequired to convert the land frolll the quality it was to the qualit~v it now is. . . It IS by no means a pleasant task to be thus sb'lkmg at the roots of the established customs of the country. We are the l~t persolls in existence who would resort to measures to relieve distress; and we are persuaded that Violence can never afford pennanent relief j but the task we have ~ndertaken is to expose the errors of the system under wlllch we are now actintr, and to propose a better one. 'Ve are not .e~deavoul'ing to""please the pl"ej~dices.ot: man~ind, ~ut to exhIbit truth and he who sets out With thiS mtelltlOn, wIll stop very far short of his goal, who looks with a respectful eye at the established customs of any country. 'Ve are compelled to denominate them a combination of errorlO, abundantly productive of the misery and deprav~ty of our speci~s! and before we can obtain those blessinO's which nature IS wllhng to afford us, we must literally discarJ the present state of th.ings alt~getber; and this, we again observe, must be done Without VIOlence, without violating the rights of any man. . We will now turn our thoughts to the mterest of money, w~1ich is another mode of obtaiiiing laboul' without giving any equivalent for it: or in other words of ~eg' unjustly i1ll4 posing on other men the task of keeplllg us 10 Idleness. By way of elucidation let us suppose a case. A man in trade accumulates a fortune, say, for example, by making hats. The money he possesses is the representative of that <J.uantity of the co~nb'Y s ~ealth, to which he has be~ come entitled by the e1:el'<::lse of Ins tra~e, over and. above the quantity he consumell dunng the same tune. Now If a hat be worth twenty shillinglO, we will suppose that he has accumu~ lated ten thousand hats. But it would not answer his purpose to stow them in a warehouse until his old age, because they would decrease in value: and as he could not conveniently exchanO'e 6em for other commodities, he finds it expedient to convertthem into money, whichis not so likely to decrease in value; and which will, at any time, enhange for any commodity. Now we should like to understand the justice of that principle, by which this man, ~hose stock. of.hats or of pounds steriinO' for it matters not whIch we call 1t, IS no more and ntt less th:~ ten thousand, is enabled to receive back, twenty, thirty, forty, or fifty thousand ~ats or pounds, which he d~. receive back in forty, sixty, eighty, or one hU!1dred years, If he and his posterity confine their annual expenlhture to 5001. and, lit the end of that time to have ill stock as manyllat8 or paundJ


aI et1er!! Can the bee do this? Can the ant do this? No! neither can man do it without invading the rights of others. Suppose a. number of men were to commence their operations apart from the rest of society, and that each had a store-room for the produce of his labour. Suppose one of these men, more fortunate than the rest, having filled his store-room quite full, 'Were to say to his fellows, "Gentlemen, having an abundant stock of produce, 1 will work no more, I will not, however, consume any portion of it; but you, who have accumulated nothing, shall labour still, and I will consume the produce as fat a you create it." The others would, certainly, look upon this a a singular kind of proposition. Strange, however, as it may appear, society, as it IS now constituted, not only proposes tlus, but is actually practising it to the extent of many millions annuallv. All persons deriving their incomes from the interest of money, are living upon this kind of justice. It may perhaps be said, that requiring interest for the use of money is only requiring the fulfilment of a contract, made by the consent of both parties; and therefore that it cannot be called an act of injustice. This is no answer to our argument. Weare not talking about men being oblige(~ to fulfil contracts after they have made them, but about the Ju·stice of the con· tracts themselves. It does not follow, because a contract is made between two individuals, each consulting his own interest, that the contract itself must be just. All iust con· tracts have for their foundation equal quantities Of labour: and, although a man ha"ing agreed to give twice as much for an article as it is worth, may, perhaps, be fairly obliged to fulfil his e~ment, that does not alter the nature of the engagement Itself, which is unjust upon the face of it. But, although it must be admitted that, by the custom of l'eceiving interest for the use of money, a man ti'equentlyobtains double and treble what he lends; yet it may be said, that the mone, may really be worth to the borrower that which he pays for it. This w~admit: but there is alway!! a third party concerned in the" cases. ffl."hat does th~.roductive labourer obtain for that portion of the .produce 0 his industry, which is artnUaIl..v takenfrom hIm ~ .neomes 0 tained by the lenders of montyf He obtains NOTlllNG! Then we ask, is a man the natural proprietor of the produce of his own labour? If he is not, what foundation is there for property at all ?-Under what circumstances-can a man say, "ThiS is miner" If he is, how C&Il that cUlltom have any foundation in justice which takes it 33 from him, without giving him any equivalent? Either a man i, not the just proprietor of the produce of his own labour, or, there is no justice in requiring interest for the use of mon~y! It is totally impossible for both of them to have any foundation in justice. If a man accumulates a fortune, and choose§ to retire u~n it, the moment he ceases to do something to support himself that fortune ou,ght to decrease by every shilling he takes from it; as the bee nUs her hive in the summer, and consumes the produce of her industry in the winter. This would be living u~n property. We trust that it has now been malle sufficiently plain, that the independent classes of society are dependent, first, upon the industry of others; and second, upon injustice, which enables them to command it. But, if the incomes of the higher classes are a direct tax upon the producers of wealth, ha\'e not they themselves every thinO' they can desire? 'Ve fear not, but tliat on the contrary, thel are literally surrounded with cil'cumstances, each of whIch would prevent the possibility of their being happy. They have food, clothing, and habitation, it is true, but how are they supplied to them? Of the first, is it sufficient that it be of the best kind, and be supplied in the best manner? No! custom has rendered it the vehicle of ostentation and rivalship. Of the second, is it sufficient that it be of the kind best calculated to protect the person; to secure bodily health and comfort; and to exhibit the real elegancies of dIe hUlnan form? No! A thing called fUllhion, better named folly, is the grand desideratum. No matter hlJw htde the dress be calculated to protect the person; no matter how inconvenient in its structure, or how much calculated to iujure health; no matter how absurd in its appearance, provided it be fashionable: and, consequently, (for it is a necessary consequence) to introduce a new mode is the summit of human achievements. How much longer will beings, capable of becoming rational, by an early direction of their faculties to pursuits calculated to repay their toil with real pleasur~, be thus the dupes of a never failinO' cheat, whose rewards to her devotees are perpetual rene~als .of. her former prl.!mises! Of the tlurd, IS. It enl)~h, that It answer all the purposes of protection from the elements, a retreat frl1ln the bustle of business or recreation, II- place amply accommodated for the purpo8es of society, retiremeut, and domestic pleaurc? No! it


must be rnd ~ it must be m~ificent; it must say, "My occupant 11 a man of wealth;" otherwise it is of little use! But can it be denied, that the circumstances of this class allow of ever! enjoyment. Have they not their families and friends arouna them, with ample opportunity of exercising the virtues of benevolence, hospitality, friendship, and of affection? We certainly cannot deny, that they have all the happiness that can be purchtued! but we do denl that haPl?iness can be purchased aj all. Wu.lth, without a right direction of the faculties and atrections, can alford us but little pleasure; and while distinction, empty, vain distinction, is the mark (as now it is throughout the wealthy world) at which all are taught to aim, disappointment will be the never failing result. The rich are ready enough to contribute to charities, when a name can be pnrcbased by it, and the difference between their condition and that of their fellow-men exhibited by the donation. But exhibit to them a statement offacts, proving to demonstration, that the sum of money the,r give annually to public charities, may be 80 employed, as 10 a few years, to raise the productive classes to a condition in life equal and .u~rior to THEMSELVES; and that from henceforth their annual donations will be uncalled for: soticit their charity to undertaking as t!tis, and you will learn to ~all it by its right name. rou will gP-t more pounds to bUIld poorhouses than you will get pence to raist the condition of the lower orden, to that of perfect independence and freedom! The lower orders must do this for themselves, and they will do it too. As to the alfections of this class, they seldom flow in a natural direction. Look at their marriages! How few can say, .. 'Tis Dot the eoaner tie of human laW!!, Unnatural oft,_nd foreign to the mind, 'fhe.t binds our peace, but harmony itself, Mtluring all our pauions into love !" I~e for a mOment, (and it will not be difficult to do so, for the reality ia too frequently-before our eyes,) a fine girl, endowed by nature with a kind helU"t, an open, generous dis~ tion, and qualities of mind capable of rendering her esteemed, respected.! and beloved by all ; imagine such a girl as this, under the inullence of parental avarice, striving to overcome the better feelings of her natllre, to annihifate each interesting charm, and to become a slave, a mere thing of the world. At Jaat her nature yields: behold her then, the PUI'~ propertl of ODe, who loves bel' little, and who she 10,'es 35 less: the golden \'ision over, its real value known; and stern reality presented to her \"lew ,in al) the horrors of rem~e. Some little quarrel, perhaps, With hnn, sh~ formeI'll could ~ust endure as ~rtner of her bed, COil verts IDlhfterence mto hatred; and then, If formed)" solicited by one she loved, ~oo late she cries, "'Vhere might I now have ,~n! Stung wI~h remorse she flies to books, perhaps, to diSSipate the a~0111sh of ~er mind; but hel'e again she fails. Perhaps a few hnes, descriptive of the joys of virtuous love, may meet h~r eye; she, dares notread them; thl·OWS the book away, and III the angUls~ of her soul, despair becomes the sole possessor of her nund. Such are the matchless joys of purchased love; and such the history of half OUI' race. But days and years roll on, until, at length, the constant struggle kills those kindlier feelings which she once possessed. At last, she wonders why she ever felt a pang; calls Jove the dream of childhood, and becomes herself the vender of her offspl·ing's joy. If such, then, be the picture of the wealthy world, we can· not envy it. If such the purchased joys of wealth, let us no ltmger blame the purchaser; who, misled by promises of pleasure, false as they are fair, pursnes a shadow and neglects the substance; but rather let us think of him with pity, and lay before his view a s~cimen ofwhat true pleasure is. In vain will falsehood then aefend her cause; "TR1.JTH WILL PREVAl1.," and man will yet become a happy race. As there appears, then, so little prospect of happiness amon"st the higher classes, since their pursuits are calc,ula!ed to an~ihilate the possibility of its existence, by substttuttng cold formalities, external pomp, and petty rivalships, for heartfelt cordiality, internal satisfaction, ami rati(mal pleas~17' Jet us pass on to the commercial world, and see whether It IIi ill a better condition. The striking features of the character of, thi~ class are i,nsineerity, slavery of the corporeal, and prostitutIOn of ~he mtellectual faculties, alld perfect indifference to the mlsfortu~e8 of their fellow-creatures. We are not, however, condemmng the men: we are only endeavouring to exhibit th~ necessary consequences of the present system of human affairs., . Can that man be smcere, whose constant occupation IS an effilrt to make his commodities appear better than his neighbour's? and is not this the constant occupation of the commercial world? Equal capitals, skill, and mdustry, employed ill the manufacturing of goods, will, ill general produce goods


t)f equal values at equal frices. How then is a new manufacturer, presenting bimsel in the r~.lrkets, ,vhen both he· and his goOds are alike unknown, to obtain customers, but by false representations, if competition has already reduced profits to the lowest scale? Tbe fact is, he has no other resource: and however much men may differ in their mode of doing this, accordin15 to the different constructions of their consciences, they all do i~ and all must do it while the present system of commerce eXists. The same is even more applicable to retail traders. The same markets are open to alr. Equal capitals, with skill and industry, will command goods at equal prices. The consequence is, that a never ~ea2in effort takes place amongst c:o!"~titors, to make their s appear cheaper than their neighbour's. Truth can be 0 no servIce in this cause. From the nature of the case it is evident that falsehood must be resorted to. 'Vhat says experience? There is not one advertisement in one hundred, which appears in the public prints, relating to the prices of goods in retail shops, but what is untrue. Let any man deny this, who knows any thing of business. The printers of newspapers ought to place all advertisements from retail shops, under the head of" Falsehoods, misrepre'entatWns, 4·c." Can general sincerit.r exist in such a state of society as this? 'Ve deny the possibihty of it ! Can genera~ happiness exist in the absence of general sincerity? Impossible: It would be the weakest of weaknesses to expeci it. As to the occupations themselves, they are perfect slaverv. In manufacturing and wholesale trades, it is true, the employers do not, in general, make use of much personal exertion; but their minds are in a state of continual anxiety. 'nleyare for .ever being tortured with f~rs, either of being outdone by their competitors, or of losmg property by tneir debtors. Fluctuation~ in prices, losses in tr!ide, ~nfortunate speculations, and .other dl~eeables of the like kmd, occupy the ~reater JlOrtlOn of their thoughts. The consequence of which IS, that the character becomes morose, sullen, avaricious, gloomy, and callous; though it were naturally excellence itself. Intellectual pursuits are totally out of the question. Should a 80 unfortunate, as to devote a reasonable portinn of his time to study or tecreation, he fails. To be successful, every effort of body and mind must be excluiOively devoterl to the laudable, adlnirable, an~ glorious pursuit of getting money. But if this be the condition of the employers, how dll we fillJ the employ... d? These may, indeed, cast allenviuus eye towarus tIle 37 lteasts of the field and the fowls of the air. Bes~des inheritin... the mental qualities which we have just described, these m~n are the greatest slaves in existence. In wholesale trades they are not, 18 general so badly off as in retail ones ;-t~ough. in the former, there is quite enough to sicken and disgust every man who has the least taste for intellectual pleasure: but deplotable indeed is the condition of a retail shopman. For a pittance just sufficient to make him look smart and prim, he toils from seven in the morning until all hours of night, and often " Till the grey mom Lifts her pale lustre on the palcr wretch." During this time, he is e~gaged i~ the .interesting o~cupations of decorating shop wllldows, tIc~etmg goo~s, .stmrklllg and smiling across a coun~er, or standmg a.b0l;lt III ldlen~ss; and, lastly, in un?oing a~ m~ht all he did m the mormng. Glorious occupatIOn! Wortlly of l'lltlonal men! Useful members of society! .. .. Nearly allied to this c1~ss th~re IS another, ,·tz. mtllt~ers and dress-makers, with thClr asststants. These are even 10 a still more hopeless coud!tion, f01: they ~ommence t~lei.r operations about the same tIme, winch. With 1{'Ss varIation and exercise, and frequently the worst of flOd; with .scarce!y a sufficient time allowed for even the attempt to eat It, continue until the very latest hour of morning that the. ill-f~ted. victim can be employed, without the actual destructIOn of eXistence. Some, who are unacquai.nted with the practices in these trades, may look upon thiS as an overdrawn statement; but indeed it is not so; it is the naked truth.

But to return to the shopkeepel'S, whosf;! misfortune, and not fault, it is that they are .'10 pr~ced; let them, for the sake of their future welfare. aud happllless ~ttend. a few general meetinlJ's and take their case mto conslderahon. Let them consid;'r 'well what tltey are., and W~l~t they ,?wy be. 9nl)' l~t them once see their pres~nt c0!1d1b'm as. It really. IS, their effilrts to escape [rom it Will be III proportIOn to thetr. knowledge of it. A few will ~et the exa~lJlI~~.the many wtll SO'lll follow, at:d the present fl'.lvolou~ and. mSlpu\ race of shopkeepers shall change into ratlOnal~ mtelhgent, useful members of societJ; free as the air they breathe.

But, if insincerity and slayery are evils attendant ~n the present system of commerce, how much worse a one lS that perfect callousness of heart which is necessarily generated by It!


The rUvision of interest in the employmeftt of capital, is of itself sufficient to tnnihila.te evet"y amiable feeling, to reduce man to a character bt:low the brute, RIllI to render him the most callous of created beings. There is not a man in tlus country who depends, in any way, 011 commerce for subsistence, who has 1I0ta thousantI commercial enemies. The labourer who seeks employment, trequently finds enem~es to his interest even amongst those who would otherwise be his friends. His relatives, ~rhaps, may have obtained employment, which would otherwIse have faLfcn to his share. Amungst tradesmen of every kind the evil exists. The merchant, the wholesale dealer, the ~ta~l tradesma~, t!m mech:mic, eacl.t u~ ~hese finds an ~nemy to hIS eommerclld mterest III every Illlhndual engage!l III the lame line'uf business 810 himlielt: 'the very beggar well knows, that wel"e it not for the numbel'less competitors with whom he has to contend, how much.. less frequently his applications wouM. be nlade without ellect. Thus man becomes the universal foe of man, and triumphs in the fall of him whom nature tells him that he ought to love. The destruction of one is the prosperity of another; thus envy, hatred, malice, personal enmity, and, pertect indifthence to the misfortunes of our felh,w-creatures, become ~nerated in the human breast; and yet, su"an.:.noe and incredible as it may appear, while these and like dispositionlil of the mind aloe 110thin~ mor:e nor less, tbIQ the necessary! and ne1Jer jailillg consequences of the {lresent vatem, we actually employ a bUlly of men, in number, tncludiiag their families and domestics, abou t 116 thousands, and pay them several millions annually, to !Ie!'tr0,y by precept, tJ.tat which almost ~verY,other institution of society i8 givmg birth to and nurt1\rmg! fhe present system of human affairs, is calcula~d, in alm~s~ all i!S pat-ts, to bring the princil)le of self-love mto. competttllln With benevolence. Look to t lis }"e meters of evIls; you, who would tOeliwll1 the fi·t1it, while you cherish the tree of evil. Understand this circumstance, remove it, and if the wlll,ld t!len rcfuses to be happy, bllune hu~n ilature: But while this t'cmains, ito is as wise to expect !'appmess, as It would be to expect the pme-apple to flourisl\ m a bed of snow. ~e now come t:J th.e lower classes, the misery and degradatIon of whose Clll1!htiUn aloe too well known to I'equire either description or cOlUm"nt. "~e shail therdinoe pa';s them over by merely observing, that their case is entirely hopeless whUe 39 the pt:esent sys~~ of commerce exists; and we shan proccell to make a few observations on the late disttOesses of Ireland. The followiag extracts from correspondence, published by the London committee at the time, canllot be too flocquently brought before the public eye. EXTRACTS. I' FROM BANTRy.-In a population of 16,250 there are 7,000 totally deRCndent on a fund of 553/. 'nlis is a fearful number of famishing paupers. It being impossible to minister to the wants ot all, scenes of tile most agonizing distress are every day taking place. "The pride of the people too adds to the calamity. One woman, ashamed to make her case known, died, with her three children, of actual starvation. Many are seen to faint throug:h exhaustion durin~ the necessary delay that occurs in admiwstering food, and lt is the opinioll of many, that, were it not for the benevolent aid of the British Public, the local subscriptions would be hardly sufficient to pm"chase coffins for ,those who would die of mere want. The Typhus .'ever, and Dysentery are also prevailing rapidly." "FROM RATHKEALF..-I went yesterday to lay before the Committee the result of oUI' visitatIOn through the Town lands of our Parish. Of lSg2 persons, 88J were dt'stitute of any means of providing food. MallY for a Ion;; time had but one· meal for tllelr families, some had been eating some remnants of seed potatoes left in the grt1untl since year, many had not a morsel to eat. \Vant of food has bl'Ougnt the, fever among us."

"FRO~( LISTOWEI..-On behalf of my poor countrymen, I return heartfelt thanks to you fer having thus humanely averted the ilDpendillg and otherwise inevitable calamity of a famine. These humane efforts will save thousands of famishing creatures from death. Hitherto they have been suppOl-ted by the exertions of a nearly exhausted countt"y, exertions stretched far beyond the means of tho~e making them, but no Jon!!'Cr able to carry them on. Few have hitherto died of actuaY starvation, but the pale and emaciated faces met with in the streets and on the roads, proved the rapid aJlProach of this last stage. One man had not a morsel to' eat for three dax", and when stretched on his bed to die was saved by a tril1e, but his recovery Was slow."

"FaoM ROSCOMMON.-The sum of 50/. remitted for the relief of the two Parishes of D. and K. is very nearly expended.


in a few d:i}s nearly 3,000 inhabitants will again be reduced. tu a state of starvatilln." "FROM KILI.ARNfo:Y.-~O case can surpass the wretched ness of the re:;idents of Ibl'icbne, &c. A total failure of the last year's crop deprived them of the only means of subsistence. To prolong a miserable existence they have been co:nllellecl til liv,:, on rock weed, limpets, and the tops of nettles. Hundreds dally flock to the sea side to cllllect scanty meals. Humanity shudderli at the si~ht of theil" pale and sickly forms, wom a~ay by dise~se and tamine. With joy n~d gratitude they hat! the exertIOns made hy a generous publIc to relieve theIr misfortunes." "FROM TARBuT.-Unless further and immediate relief be afforded" the distress fOl" want of food for 2,197 persons will ~ ~Iamitous in the extreme. There is only a scanty supply fur SIX or seven days more." "FROM MAyo.-Of 8,000 inhabitants in the Parish of K. one-half are now literally in a state of starvation. The numbers, too crying out for relief increase daily. There is unhappily neither a Rector, nor a Gentleman of property resident JD the Parish." "FROM GALWAy.-I cannot describe the deplorable state of this wretched people. ~;lany of them subsist on a weed brought twenty or twenty-five miles upon their backs from the sea thore. At a meeting of the most respectable inhabitants, so ~is the want of money, we could not get 101. To thili I iihall add 50!. But wbat is that to support 4,000 distressed beings until the hanest.'! "FROlll CORK.-Sickness anti famine are daily making suell rapid strides that I think nothing less than Divine interposition can save half of my unfortunate parishioners frolll perishing with hunger." , "FROM CLIFDfo;K.-As to the employment of the Poor, a few days more will unfit them for any work. One poor mall was employed last week on the roads, was at work on Saturday ev,eninj;, got up this morning (Monl1ay) to work, said he felt lan~iu and sleepy, ami lay down again on the ground and died. J.4our died in Boffin, and if swelletl limbs, pale looks, sunken cheeks, and hollow eyes are the harbingers of death, tite work of death will soon be very rapid here. I have often seen .carcity, but never had an idea of famine until now." "FROM THE ARCHBISHOP Ofo' T\.'AM.-I have sent to the Committee a full statement of the hideous scenes I have witBessed. If thousands are not sent to Mayo and Galway, "l1 whole llOpulations must die. On my way to Castlebar I passell a multitude of half starved men, women and children, seeking a share of a handful of meal, which could only keep theil' alive and no more." "From the same (shown to me at lite Committee Room.) " I say to you in the language of my poor people: The Lord bless your English Committee; you are doing your best to save us from starving, but I fear all will not do. YOURS, P. TUAM." Now, without adding one word, if it were possible to do so, to awaken compassion still more lleeply than this simple statement of facts must awaken it, we only ask whether this is not sufficient to make us suspect that there is some elTor in our system of a very serious nature? 'Ve ask if, with facts like these before our eves, we are forever to be lulled into a state of lethargic insensihility, and forever to console ourselves with the old Inaxim, "that things are finding their level?" Things have been finding their level eve-:" since the creation: when, " we ask, is that level to be found? And what sort of a level will it be when found? It is very clear that at least five hundt"ell thousand Irish have been nearly finding their level, and it appears to us that the level they have found, is the level we all (leserve to find, if we do not alter our mode of acting. Are we, because sufficient money has been collected to alleviate the late extreme distress of Ireland, to sit down and make ourselves contented? To set down to the account of Providen.ce our past indescribable state of wretchedness, and to tak~ it fOI' granted that now all is right, and that things will go on better m future? Or, ought we not, rather, to devote our unremitted attention TO DISCOVER AND REMOVE THE CAUSE of such calamities?

And, in this pursuit, are we to make every effurt to discover truth subservient to established custom and receivell opinion? Are we to make a full stop, when we find something resembling difficulty between us amI our purpose? Or ought we not! ra~her, to pursue ou~ objec~ with unabat~d energy lt~lil toe gam It, regardless of difficulties, and valulllg at Ilothmg the opinion of the world?

If such a task we have undertaken, may we be enabled to fix a steady and an anxious eye upon our object. May we be enabled to pursue it with unabated. firmness, notwithstanding the difficulties which may be expected to ,)resent themselves. The cause of Ireland's distress is this: the productive Irish, like the productive English, are cursed by the division of ill


terest in the employment of capital. They arc deprived of that natural and umlu~tlonable right, tlle produce of their own labour. Only give them this, amI they will neithel' want your Inoney to assist them out' of temporary difficultieR, nor your milital',Y fOl'Ce.~ to keep them in quietness and good order. We say, gzve tltem. theil' natural rigM8; they want nothing but what is strictly their own. "Ye should have said, cease to take from them those crops which are their own; cease to plunder and oppress them, 'anti they will cease fore,'er to solicit your chal'ity and to disturb your peace. But this is a waste of time and words; it is in vain to tell the rich man that he ought not to .oppress; let us hasten to instruct the poor man by what means he will be enabled to secure to himself all he wants, all he requires, all he is desirous to obtain, the woduce of his industry, for the loss of which nothing can requite him. The miseries of Ireland, and of England too, are 8till before onr eyes. Shall we then let the subject pass away down the stream oftime, and sink in the current ofoblivion r No! We will pursue it. "Ve know the value of the principles we are advocating too well to let them rest. The world at large cannot much longel' misunderstand them; and so soon as they shall he generally understood, they will be generally acoted u~n. We will now notice a public opinion on this subject. The following is an extract from a weekly' paper of the 4th of August, 1822:-" ABSENTEES. It Will hardily be credited by those who have no means of knowing the circumstance, that there are from one hundred to one hundred and fifty thousand English and Irish people of property, living in different parts of the continent. Whole towns are absolutely peopled with them. In Paris, the Duke of H. with the Earls S. and F. at an expense to themselves, or rather to tlzeir country, of 100,000/, per annum, lead the fashion to about twenty thousand English persons of a mixed character." The remainder of Hle article goes on to state who the parties are, and where they are residin~; which particulars are not at all necessary to our subject. The absence of these persons from their estates has been considered a cause of the great distress of Ireland; and it is for this reason that we notice it. Now let any man, who has ever been accustomed to think at all; let any man, who has ever, for a: moment, turned his thoughts to the subject of human affairs, look upon this statement: first at the tact itself, and then at its consequences. Can anyone IJOssibly bring his mind to suppose that men 4., Itave not a ri/rllt to go to any purt of the world they please? Is there any ihin~ in nature which calls upl)n a mau, as an a~t of duty, to remam where he is born? Is tht"I'e any reasou In nature why a man of fortune, who has nothing to do but to enjoy himself, should confine himself ~o any ,particular ~Pllt of ground, where he happens to come mto eXistence, wIllie the beauties of nature and of art are so extensively scattered tlv('r the whole earth, that the more he sees, the more he may re~sonably be expected to dt"sire to see? Is it written in the skies or in the bible-" thou *,alt dwell in the land of thy forefathers ?" Or, is it written in the consciences of men, that they should do this? But, even if it were an indefensible practice to leave our native country, who knows so little of human nature as to suppose, that men, ever constant lovers of themselves, can be brought to please anyone but themselves up.on .such a subject. But the practice is defensible upon every prmclple of natural right, ami the clamour against it is vain and ~enseless. . ~QW for its consequences, which are very suople, and easlly explained. The Irish, for example, first export nearly the whole of the produce of their labour, to enable them ~o pay their r.ents:. aud upon the receipt of the money for tlus produce they export that also. The produce goes to one ~ount~y, the money, perhaps, to another.-The consequence IS plam. As the" portion left rOl' them, is never more t~an ~arely ~ufficient to support existence, the fi~st hour any ~hlOg hke a fadure in a crop takes place, they are lIterally starvlO~ to death. And these are the apparent effects ~f what we have defined .to,be an innocent and defensible practice. Yes! and we submIt It ~ a position, which fears no ref~tation, tha,t the ~ery fll:ct of an 10nocent and justifiable practIce produclllg eVil of tlus enor~01!1 nature, proves incontestibly, that the real cause of the eVll18 of a deepel' rooted nature; and that what we have hitherto looked u~n as the cause, is only an effect of som~ other, cause. "Ve wlll not deny that there ~ay be some partl~ular .ms~anccs, arising out of very peculiar Circumstances, which Will torm an exception; but we venture to say, as a general and almost invariable principle, tbat man cannot injure man by taking his own property to any part of the gltl~, l:he perso~s.who furnish the subject of our present consl~eratIon, are IIvmg ~J?On property which i8 not natul'alZ1J thetr own, They are hvmg upon property, of w:hich the productive clas~es are the true proprietors, and of which they have been, depnved ?y tlzeforc~ OJ circumstance8. The property they hve upon IS not theml:


they did not create it: they have given no equivalent for if. We defy ~hem to show, by.any prmciple of justice, that they !uJ,Je any nght whatever to It. THIS IS the cause of the evil. Th~y can ~ever do any mischi~t; ~y a~senting themselves, while they hw upon property wluch IS strictly their own. It appears fr?m the Report of the Select Committee on the E~nployment of the Poor III Ireland.' appointed by Parliament Wlt~ re~ere!lc.e to the late distres~es, that "the potato crop, which turDlshes the general food of the peasantry, had failed; but there was no ~ant of food of another description, for the Bupport ofhurnan hfe. On the contrary, the cropl! of grain had been far from deficient; and the prices of corn and of oatmeal Wl're .very mod,:rat~. The export of grain, from parts within the clt81reued dlstncts of Ireland, was considerable durinO' the entire pe~od from May to August, infinitely exceeding th~ imports durmg that period: and those districts in the South and W,l'st presented the remarkable example of POSSESSING A Sf RPLUS OF FOOD, whilst the inhabitants were suffering FROM ACTUAL W ANT. The meritorious patience of the peasantry, under the pressure of want, is here not undl'serving ofattention and of praise. The calamity of 1822 may therefore, be sai~ to have proceeded less from the want of food itself! than from the want of adequate means of purchasing it; or, 10 o~er w?rds, from the want of profitable employment." ".An mtelhgent Scotch Agriculturist, who visited Ireland durmg t.he !ast year, alleg~s, 'that a large portion of the pea.. santry hve ~n a state. of 1~ls.ery of which lie could have formed no, c~nception, not ImagmmO' t~at a~y human beings could eXI~t 10 such wretchedness; ihelr qlbms scarcely contain an article that can be called furniture; in some families there are . no such things as bedclothes, the peasants showed some fern !lnd a .quanti!y of straw thrown over it; upon which they slept m their workmg clothes, yet, whenever they 'tad a meal of pota~ os they ;were cheerful; the greater pal'! he understood to drmk nothI!lg but water. This statement appeal'S confirmed by the.testimony of many of the. witnesses examined by your CommIttee! ~ho agree n.ot only 10 this melancholy description of the condItIon of a conSIderable portion of the Irish peasantry ~ut a~e also in attributing it to the total want ofemploymeni 10 whIch ~hey are le~t. In some ruts of t~le country one half ~f the entire popula1:'lOn ,are ~tate( to b.e Without employment, 1Il.others the pr?porhon IS ~ald to. be ~bll greater; and all the. WItness!) exammed ~6,:ee In attnbutmg, to a considerable degree, the turbulent spmt of the peasantry and their excesses to 45 ~is cause. At Clonakilty, in the county of Cork, where the hnen manu.facture has been introduced, tl'an{luility is stated to have p'revalled. The county of Mayo where yarn and linens to a conSIderable extent are m:ulUfactured, the public peace has not been endan~red, One Barony in the county of Kerry .has been unifurmly the least disturbed, ana in that Barony alone has. manufacturing industry been carried to any extent. In the neI~hbourhood ot 'Vaterfonl "no shade of disturbance bas existed, the peasantry h:tvin... a steady market for their l~bour; whilst ill parts of Cor.k \\~ere the people are to a cons~ derable .degree unemployed, the most .langerous comb:natlOns ag:unst the laws, and the most violent attacks upon p~op~rty, have lately taken place;. and yet in those vcry dlstncts your Committee have been mformed on the authority of a civil engineer of eminence, "that he very soon paclfi(Od the ~ountry by. an extended employment of the people in opemng a new hne of road;" the member who gave thi'l inf"rmation, a~~ing from hil?lself," that if emploJm.:nt couU l,e made suffiCIently extenSIve, he doubted nut that the turbuldlt kabits of the population would be abandoned."-When, in a,ddition to thes~ .expressions of opinion, the improved condition and h'anqulhtx of the nol"th of Ireland, where the linen manufacture prevaIls, is contrasted with the wretchedness of the south, your Committee cannot refuse admittin~ the immediate connexion existinO' between employment (Jiul peace, as well as between want ~f useful occupation anel turbulence. " It is the opinion or your Committee, that there existfol in in the minds of the people a great anxiety for labour. The peasantry of the south and west quit their homes at particular times of the year in search of employment. Mr. NlIumo, the civil engineer, when examin~ before the Committee of 1819, stated that many hundreds of the peasantry of Kerry had will lingly hired themselves as labourers in the neighbouring cuuntyof Limerick atJour-pence a day; and a memiJer of the Committee has stated, "that he has known many of the peasantry of Kerry to quit their homes in search of employment, ' ofteriug to work for the merest subsistence that could be obtained, at the lowest possible rate of wages, for two-pence a day, in short for ANY THING that would purchase Jooel enough to keep them alive during the ensuing 24 hours.' 'Vhen able to obtain labour by contract, or by task, as it is called, the peasantry are frequently known to overwork themselves, lila manner injurioufol to their health! The inhabitants of those Peninsulas of the South \'h'st of Ireland, which are washed


by the Atlantic carry tIle sea ore and the calcareous sands of the coast ma~y miles inland; and in some cases, where the mountAins are steep, and roads have not as. yet .been opened, these manures are carried two or three miles mlaud on the backs of the peasantry. From these facts, ,Your Co.mmitt~e have every reason to conclude, that so far from bemg umformly inactive and idle, the peasantry of Ireland have a considerable anxiety to procure employment." Such is the history of unhappy In~land. The select Committee then informs us that, "amongst the urious suggestions which have been laid before them, one from Mr. RObert Owen, of Lanark, has attmcted so much of public attention, as to require pnrticular n~tice. It has ~een 10 much canvassed in public, an.d has excited .so m~ch mterelt in Ireland, that your CommIttee have f~lt It their duty to inquire minutely into its details, and conSider the tendency 'Of the principles on which it is found~d." The result of that minute inqUIry; Ms been condemnation. They" feel ev~ry disposition highly to estimate the effects of good educatwn and early moriilliabits, but to that any' a~rangen~ent of circumstances' can altogether dlve~t !Dan of Ius passIOns And frailties, as they comprehend pnnclples m themselves lIndenilible, is a result which can never be anticipated." Our business here is not to discuss the opinions of select Committees, but we ought not to quote such 1anguage as this, ,,·ithout briefly replying to it.. Either the gelltfeme~ of the Select Committee are wlwlly 19norulIl of Mr. OWl!:;>; s plans, Ill' the::: wilfully' miIJ7'eptestmt ~!lem . . The g;aml .-feature ?f Mr. OWEN s plan, ui a clJlnm~rclal POl!'t .of Hew IS.' that it (~boli. heB the circums("mce u,7nch n01V hmtts procll!ctwn, andlft'VeB to the producers the wellith !/;at tf:?y create. In this re~pect it has noth}ng to do '."ith .educ.ation or ear~.y mor:tl habits. .It has hothm'" to do WIth dn'estmo- maIj. oC IllS passIOns and fraIlties. It i~ simply the employment of mankind upon the principle of coroperation; and so necessary is it that man mast be divested of his passions and frailties, before he can ~e 10 e~ployed, that ~v~ry individual, in every P,3rt of the umted km!!.'dom, who IS 10 any wal connected WIth the government of the counlry, is now acttng upon thi.Y principl~! and so great is the difference in the employment itself, that he does not even know that such a difference exists! ! It is totally impossible that any other principle than that of co-operation can furnish un!imited emploJ~ent to all. Dreadful therefore as tile reflectIOn may be agamst thp recurrence 47 of such a calamity as the one we ha\"e just described, the unfortunate Irish have no protection, nor can they have any under the existing principles of commerc~. 'Vhen we look at Ireland then, as now it is, there is nothing to excite our surprise, when we find in almost every weekly print accounts headed ., Shockinr, Occurrence"-" Barbarous MUI'der"-" Diabolical Outrage, ' and so on, the only wonder is that there are not ten times the number of them. 'Ve now approach an important part of our subject. In the early part of this J"ecture (page 16) it was proved, that by the present arrano-ements of sllcietv, the productive. classes are deprived of v~ry nearly four.ti'fths of the produce of theit' labour. Now we ask, what would be the condition of the lower orders of the community, of those men, who now, from the want of employment, are driven to every act of desperation and wickedness, which human ingenuity can invent. ~ support existence; of those men, who are compelled to SOltClt the charity of the affiuent to keep them fi'om starving; whll;t., we say, would be the condition of the then lower orders, It means be devised to do-what? ,something wonderful? prodi!! ious? an Herculean labour? No? simply this, to emlblc the us~ful labourer to keep for his own use the property he creates; to enable him to exchange that P:trt of the produce ofhi~ labour, which he does not require for Ius own use, for somethmg else of equal value, fur which he has an use, deducting only ,the portion necessary to pay the expenses of Government, d~I'ectlOn, superintendence, and distribution? This is the reform we want; this is where reform must begin: no other can be worth a straw without it, and the first fnnts of it would be that the labouring c!as~es of the con~IllUl~ity \~'ould immediately, ~~d themselves til a better cO!1(htwn, III romt of wealth, mult'p"able by human inuustry, than the bt"tter class of tr:Hle;,I;;en now find themseh'es!! We assert. fearless of refutati.m, " 1(1 re!mrdlcss of the sneers of those wl1:l may be inclined to lau;;h at"'faets beyond the nacrow limits,of th~ir comprehension, tl.l~t the productive powers of labuur III thiS country, have at tllls moment arrived at a state of such perfection, that every man in it, yes, the poorest \Hetch that crawls upon British g,'ound, may inunediah-!y be enabled to ~onllnand as great a portlOll of the necessaries and comtiwts of life, as the man could command in tIl<' year 1812, who, with a wife and fami)yof flen inllividuals, in hiding senants, possessed' an income of 4iul. To oi.;:...,jn Wllit.:11 he would be required to l'mploy himself ,in useful and moJerate labour a few hours <lail)', which, so tar


from being a burthen, would invigorate him, and sive him a relish for rational pleasures when the hours of busmes8 were' over. These are not the dreams of a heated imagination, they are plain simple facts, cleal' as that one and one make two, proved to a demonstration. The income of each man, woman and child in the year before mentioBed, was Ill. The prodllce of their labour 541. as they were then employed, usefully and uselessly, and in this calculation one quarter of the produce of the country is allowed for the expenlles of government and man~"'ement of business. Now we would ask if it be possible to advance the labouring classes to this standard, and beyond a question it is not only possiWe, but a most easy task, what sort of a world should we then inhabit? Is it reasonable to suppose that we should then think it necessary to retire to our beds with weapons of defence near us, to protect us from the midnight aepredator? Is it reasonable to suppose that our streets would then be filled with thieves, and our prisons overflowing with feldns? Is it reasonable to suppose that any man would beg, or that any man would give to a beggar? III a word, is it feasonable to suppose that men would resort to every description of crime and violence, to obtain that wealth with great diffi· culty, and at the risk of their lives, which they could obtain without difficulty, in occupations which would serve them for amusement, whilst they surrounded them with wealth? We answer that the happiness of man is in his own hands, not individually, but collectively. We answer that the division of the inttrest8 of men, in their mode of employing capital and m the distribution of the traduce of their labour, is the tremendous engine of mischie which is the cUrse of the human race, and the cause of almost eve'1 evil by which we are surround' 4!d. We answer that UNI fV OF INTERESTS would totally anni/lilate every thing resembling poverty, with its ten thousand consf', which unite to deprive the human race ofevery thing worth possessing; and we further answer, so far from there being any insuperable diJIicuftJ!. in establishing thia, principle, tlutf even now, NO CO;\IIU.NA nON OF HUMAN POWER CAN ]?REVJ<~NT, OR J<WEN MATERIALLY RETARD ITS ESTABLISH:\tENT. OOMPETITiON TIlE I.Il\IIT OF PRODUOTION. After what we have statpd. it ma.v perhaps be supposed, that we have now made the most of our subject; that we have given the most favourable, representation. of the new vi ews, which can, conSistently With trut~, be given of t~e~. Far indeed, however, from the truth IS SUCR a 8UpposI.tlOn: So far from having painted the advantages of c~p~ation 1R th~ highest colours, w~ have as yet conveyed no Jus,t I~ea of them. It IS certainly an Important truth, that ~e prmclple~ we are adv~ating would have the effect of multJplymg the mcomes of the productive classes, by at least four; but.important as this truth is, ~n~ great. as the advantages ~re ~hlch would re: suit from it, It IS nothmg to the truth which IS yet to come, the advan~s of which cannot be described. We havehit~erto given but ~ faint ide~ ~f the a~vantages which are withm our reach. We now sohclt attention to the most important truth that was ever submitted to the mind of man as regards the aff.1.irs of this life: the truth which forms the basis of the prodigious and undescriba~le difterence. between the old and new system: a trut~ winch cann.ot fall to open the eyes of all who understand If. to an entirely new view of almost every circumstance by which we are surrounde~l. Ifever there was a circumstance calculated to pl'oduce Ulllversal astonishment; if ever there was a circumstance calculared to awaken a spirit of univerlilal inquiry and investigation; if ever there was a drcumstance calculated to arouse the energies ~f the whole human race, and to ,;,nit~ them in '!ne common effort to free themselves from the nllserles by wInch they are surrounded it is this: "That whilst the inhabitants of this and other c~untries are wanting tho"e nece"saries and comforts of life, the liberal possession of which consti.tutes wha~ we call wealth; whilst many obtain them ve~y scantIly, all~ WIth great difficulty, toil and anxiety; and wlnlst others ar~ III the constant fear of having them wrested from them by cIrcumstances beyond their control; still it is undeniable, that those very inhabitants, aided by the great me.chanic po~er of which they are possessed, are capable of creating. by theIr own la~ur~ all those necessaries and comforts of hfe to an almost unltmlted extent; certainly to an extel\~ amply s.ufficient to ~~pp~~ the wants of every member of theIr respective commumties . If this be true, and who can doubt it? it is certain that there is no reason in naful'e, why any man shoold be exposed to poverty and want. The reason why so many are poor, mu~t therefore be sought for in the institutions of society, and tlus leads us to the important, truth of which ,we have spoke?~ which is, that there now exists AN UNNATURAL LIMIT TO PRODUCTION.


1'\e ostensible cause of poverty, amongst the able and industrious part of the community, is, that men are either unable to obtain employment, or the wages which their labour will enable them to command, if they do obtain permission to toil, are insufficient to raise them above it. Now tnese apparent causes are eftects; the former of this circumstance, that capital is now brought into competition with capital, insfead of heinl)' brought to act in conjunction with it; by which, instead of iii afti,rding the $reatest benefits to society, which it is capable of afforoing, It affords the least that it is possible for it to afford, if it be employed at all. And the latter evil arises from this circumstance, that the institutions of society are 80 constituted, that they deprive the productive classes of the grealest possible proportion of the produce of their labour, instead of depriving them only of that smaU proportion of it, which in every state of society will be required to support the expenses of tne direction and suptrintendence of business; the distribution of the produce of the labour of the countrv, and the expenses of government, it being evident that all per80ns thus employed, are unproductive labourers; or, in other wprds, although a proper number of them are useful and necessary members of society, still they do not" by their own labour, create any part of tnat which they consume; and must in consequence, be supported by the industry of those who do, by their own labour, create wealth. The former of these circumstances produces the ne plus ultra of wretchedness. The latter has only the mlllre moderate tendency of consigning the most useful of our species to never ending toil and miserable anxiety. This we have already explained. We have shown that the institutions of society deprive the productive classes of four-fifths of the produce of their labour, and also how that portion is taken from them. We now proceed with that of capital being brought into competit!on \~th .capital, instead of .bei~g brQu.ght to act in conjunction With It; the reason of which IS, that ID the present state of society tlte interests of men, ill their mode of employing capitai, and in the distribution of the produce of their labour, are at variance with each other, and here we arrive at the fountain head of evil. It is this circumstance which has blinded the understandinG" of every age and of every nation. It is this circumstance which has filled the earth with wretchedness, and baffled every attempt to render mankind virtuous and happy, and it is only by the abolition of this circumstance, 51 that poverty with all its destructive consequences, can be banished from the world. We will now endeavour to explain this unnatural limit to production :- There must ever be two natural limits to the annual income of the country, or, in other words, to the quantity of wealth annually created by the labour of the people, viz. th.e exhaustion qf our productive power&, and tlte satisfaction ofour want,Y. The truth. of this must be evident. In the former instance it is certain that if the whole industry of the country were called into action, and that industt·y aided by the greatest mechanic power of which we have any knowledge, the wealth of the country would have reached the greatest extent that it could reach at any given period. And it is also certiiln that if we were in possession of as much wealth as we desil'ed, we should not trouble ourselves to create more. And it would be well for us if there existed no other Em;t of production, than those two natural ones; but unfOl·tunately we have established a THIRD, and this third limit is COMPETITION. We will now endeavoul' to show that competition is the limit to production. 1st. In the present state of society production is limited by demand.

The consumers of goods usuallv apply for' them to the retail venders of them, and the qllanOtity of goods which a retail tradesman buvs, is invariably regulated by ~he quantity he expects to sell, in other words. by the quanttty he expects a demand for in his shop. In the manufacturing of goods, men are invariably regulated by the same principle. It never enters into the calculations of manufacturers how much cloth would be lequired to supply the wants of mankind. It never forms any part of .their business to asc~rtain . h0'Y many coats. the whole populatlOn ought to be supplied WIth m the course of a year, and how much doth would be fl·quired to make them: neither do they ask themselves how much cloth they have the power of making. All they ask, all they require to know, is how much clot'" thelJ can di.~pose of at a profit; how much will stock the shops and warehouses of their customers; in other words, how much it is probable there will be demand for. It is this, and this alone, which regulates prQduction•. When more is produced than there is demand for, the market is said to be overstocked; aTHI when there is less produced than there is a demand for. the market is said to be under


stocked; without the least regard either to the satisfaction of our wants, or to the extent orour ~owers of production. 2nd. If then productioll is limited by demand, the next inquiry that arises j~ "by what is demand regulated?" \Ye reply that demand is composed of the aggregate quanti/ yof JDealth, which the labour, the services, and the property, of the whole community will command; which aggregate IS composed of the quantities, which the labour, the services, or the pro~rty of individuals enable them to command. This is almost self-evident, for it must be plain to all, that no person, dependent solely on his labour for subsistence, cau obtain more wealth than his labour will purchase: that no tradesman, nor other unproductive member of society, who depends solely on his personal or mental exertions for support, un obtain more wealth thnn his services will enable him to purchase; and that no independent member of society can obtain more wealth than his property will command. Demand, thel,'efore, it is obvious, is compound of the collective quantity of wealth, which the labour of the productive clust'S, the sel"Vices of the dependent unproductive classe~ and the property of the independent classes will command. The only question that remains then, is, w\at is it that limits the quantity obtained by each individual? We reply, Sril. That the quantity of wealth which the labOur, the services, or the property, of individuals enable them to command, ialimited by COMPETITION between man and man. , It is competition which fixes the quantity of wealth obtained by the productive classes. Such· of them as are unable to obtain emplo!ment, being still candidates for employment, will ever, unller a system of individual competition, have the effect of keeping down the quantity obtaiued by the mass, to that portion which is jU8l 8ttjficient to suppurt bodily strength and to continue their race; and if they hope ever to rise above this standard, whilst commerce is conducted upon its present principles, they hope for that which they never can obtain for any consideralile len~h of time together. It is competition wIiich fixes the quantity of wealth obtained by the tradinlP classes. Every tradesman is rich or poor in proportion as tis exertions in business enable him to command a liberal or scanty supply of the comforts and the enjoyments of life, and tIlis is mvanably regulated by the largeness or smallness of the profits which he is enabled to obtain by the sale of goods. 'To prove that profits are limited by competition, aearcely requires any argument; a conclusive oue howewr_ 53 will be that if tradesmen uniformly soht goods at cost price, they w~uld obtain no income at all, and ~Ie more ~hey compete with each other, the nearer to cost pnce each 18 compelled to accept for them. " And if we pass on to those persons whose mcomes are derived from the rent of houses, and from the interest of money: in the letting of their ho~ses and money, .they become men of business. and the quantity of wealth which they ar.e enabled to obtain for their use, is also limited by competition. . Thus competition limits the quantity of wealth obtmned by individuals: The quantity obtained by individuala collectivel,y, composes the aggregate qUanfity obtained by the whole community: This aggregate quanhtyforms tlte clemand, ami demaml limits production. . . . When this subject IS clearly understood, It wIll be seen ~y all that the exhaustion of our productive ~w~rs and the ~tlS. faction of our wants, are the only natu~allim&tato productI0!1' That, so long as capital shan ~ emp'loy~ III competition with capital, instead of m conjunctIon w•.th It, we shall never be enabled either to exhaust our productive powers, or to satisfy our want~, because production !Dust ever be limited to the quantity winch the labour, the services, and the property of the community will co"!mand. .

That the quantity of wealth wlllcl~ the labounnj; classes receive is the least that their labour can be purchased tor. That the rea.~on why a working man does n.ot obtain.t~c~ the quantity he obtains at present is, becau~ If he, an md~vldual, were to demand it, and refuse to work for a lells quantity, ~e ~?uld be thrown out of employment altogether, by a~other lD~IVldu. al offering to do the same ~or~ [or the quan!lty n?w g~venin other words, by another mdlVld~al competmf! WIth !nm. That the quantity of we~lth w~lch the tradmg classes receive is the least that their services car) be pu.rchas~d for. That the reason why a trades~aD' does ~ot obtalD. t~l~e the quantity he obtains at present, IS, because If he, an mdlvldual, were to demand it, that is, demand double the profit on the goods he sells, and refuse to sell them fo~ a_l~ss profit,.he would lose his trade altogether, by another mdlVldual otre~ng to the public the same kind of goo?s ~t .the rrofit n0'Y obta~ned; in other words, by another mdlvldua compehng WIth him. . f

That the quantity of wealth which the p'roprletors 0 money and of hous~ receive, is the least that thell' house~ a~d money l;an be borrowed for. That the reason why a capitalist of tbs


kiod tloe& Bot obtain twice the quantity he obtains at prt'senf, is, because if he, an individual, were til demand it, that is, demand double the rent for his houses, or double the interest for his money, and refuse to lend them for a less remuneration, he weuld be prevented from lending them at all, by another individual oWering to lend houses and money for the remuneration now obtained; in other word", by another individual tompeting with him. That, therefore, the income of EVERY INDIVIDUAL, and consequently ()f the WHOLE COMMUNITY, except only thosc8etsons who have fixed money incomes, is LIMITED BY C MPETITION, and that each obtains the LEAST that his labour, his services. or the use of his property CAN POSSIBLY BE OBTAINED FOR. That in consequence of all being thus compelled by competition to put up with aver., limitellsupply of the conveniences and enjoyments of life, (hmited indeed when compared with our mea1ls of producing mOl"e) /( DEMAND FOR LUXURIES CANNOT POSSIBLY INCREASE IN PROPORTION AS WE POSSESS AN INCREASED POWER OF PRODUCING NECESSARIES. That on the contrary, in exact proportion as .our power of creating wealth increases, it will be obtained with increased di§ktdly; because, in consequence of the ability of the FEW to produce all the competition will allow the MANY to consume, competition will be still further increased by the increased struggle to obtain employment. T!'at the collective 9uantity of f~d, clothing, habitation, furmture, and other articles of convemence and luxury which all classes of society are thus permitted bY' competition to obtain, forms the present unnatural demand for produce; because, whenever a capitalist, overlooking or miscalculating the extent of this demand, brings a suppl~' of any article into the market exceeding it; that IS exceedmg the quantity which competition has compelled the several members of society to accept as a remuneration for their labour, their services, or their pro~rty, he is compelled to reduce the money pr,ice of such article, and thereby lose by a speculation, whIch was entered upon for purposes of gain. COMPBTITION, THEREFORE, IN THE PRESENT STATE OF socIETY, IS THE LIMIT OF PRODUCTION, BECAUSE CAPITALISTS NEVER DID AND NEVER WILL HABITUALLY PRODUCE GOODS TO SELL AT ALOSS; WHIOH WOULD INEVITABLY BE THE CASE, WERE THEY TO PRODUCE SUFFICIENT, EITHER TO SUPPLY OUIl WANTS OR TO EXHAUST OCR PRODUCTIVE POW},:US. I 55 No matter, therefore, under a system of individual comJ>etition, how poor labourers may be; no matter how difficult for tradesmen and manufactul'ers to keep their affairs together; no matter llllw difficult for landlords to obtain their rents; no matter what (Iuantity of wealth a people may have the power of creating; If their industry, aided by their mechanic and other powers of production, be equal to the enriching of the universe, the quantity they will create cannot habitually exceed the quantity which competition allows them to con~um('; though that quantity may be far from sufficient to supply their own wants. Such is actually the condition of Great Britain at the present time. Its inhabitants are in possession of powers bv which they can create w~alth without any known limits, and yet one half of them are 10 a state of actual poverty. In all societies wherein there is competihon, a number of persons are at all times out of employment. When a labourer finds himself in this situation, his natural inquiry is, how must I live? The parish allowance presents it.~elf on the one hand, and to tta.nsJ>lant the labourers who are employed on the other. The ~sh allowance aWords onlv a bare existence. The labourers employed are, perhaps, recei~ing liberal wa~s. Naturally, then, he makes an applIcation fill' employment at reduced wages: the never-failing consequence of which is, that the incomes of the productive classes are reduced to the lowest ebb, viz. to that which is sufficient to support life, and continue their race.

The same argument applies with equal force to the trading classes. 'Vhen it appears that anyone is carrying on business to great advantage, a compehtor rises up ana opposes him, a mutual eWort to undersell follows, and both are obliged to reduce their expenditure: to confine themselves to the necessaries of life, at least to taste but little of its pleasures and enjoyments. And thus, mankind, capable of surrounding themselves by their own labour, with every thing that can contribute to the enjoyment of life, are doomed bv competition to perpetual toil for the reward of a slavish eXIstence !

There is yet one more observation to make on this subject. We are for ever being told, that we have alreadl more produce than we want. Strange and foolish error. Let those who entertain such a thought understand their own words. They say, we have more produce than we want. They mean, we have more produce than there is a demand for. When every human being has every thing his heart can wish, then,


and not till then, we shall have as much produce as we want. But dreadful is the contt-ast to this in society as it now is. Go see your wretched fellow-creatures, of which there are thousands in this country, hun~ry, houseless and in rags, and inquire of them, whether THEY have a superabundarfce of wealth! Go to youl' manufactuI'ing towns, and see the \Hetdled producers ofyour wealth,ye who roll in luxuriuus prufusion, ask of them, whether THEY have more than they have need of; and blush when ye- tell us of superabundance! \Y t' have frequently more produce than we have a demand for-a great deal more: but demand is limited by competition: abolish IT, and demand shall be equal to production though it be increased a thousand fold! It is competition then, and nothing but compctition, which limits the annual income of the country. }<'rum this arises poverty, by which man is dl'iven to acts of desperation for the commission of which, PQvertv, bv introducing hun into a world of wretchedness, and surrounding him from his infancy with vicious circumstances, has prepared his mind. And as competition necessarily arises f\"Om the division of the illterel!ts of men in the employment of capital, and in the distribution of the produce of labour, it is certain that nothing less than an enltre chan~e in the commercial arrangements of society can be productive of any essential benefit to mankind. Now here we would, as it were, make a full stop, and appeal to the ju,lgment of every rational being whether this be true. We would inquire alike of every class, of every sect, of every party, whether it be true, that competition in the employment of capital is the circumstance winch limits production! Is it not tr'ue, that the enjoyments of life are produced by human labour? Is it not true, that there must ever be two natural limits to those enjoyments, viz. the exhaustion of our productive powers, and the satisfaction of our wants? Is it not true, that with these limits we have at present nothing to do? Have not the institutions of society raised up a third limit? and is not the name of it competition? And If this be true, was there ever a truth of so much importance to the commercial interests of society? Is not the attainment of wealth the object of commerce? Is it not the great business of us all, or at least of most of us? Are we not panting after it with eager anxiety, and are not the chief en~r~ies, both of our bodies and of our minds devoted to the pursuit of it? Let us then abolish this third limit to production, alld every tMng t!tat deseTI:es lIte name oj wealth shall intstantly become accca- 57 sible to all: for we should then have as much wealth as we have the POWER OF CREATING!!! Measure it who can: it is impossible; for every week, every Mechanic's Maga~.ine is pourmg forth some new invention, which, under the NE\V SYSTEM, would become an advantage equal to the labour it would save. But can this limit be abolished? 'We answer, it can be done at an'y time, without the sli~htest difficulty, without the slightest VIOlence, without the Slightest real injury to a single individual. The governol's of this country could abolish it at home in a few years, and with it all the miseries of povel·ty. The governors of this country OUg!lt to do this, tor human misel'y and blood, and crimes unnumbered are the. cost of its continuance. They might as well effect this mighty change: they might as well have, what the,Y would term, the merit of setting an example to all the clvilized world, which would be followed with an unexampled rapidity: till' the govcrnors of this country cannot prevent it from being done. They cannot, as rational men, have a wish to prevent it, but if they had, they might as well attempt to take the sun in one hand and the moon in the other: and if they do not do it, and that immediately too, individuals will. The day is fast approaching, when the sun of truth shall shed his rays amongst those countless thousands, who endure their chains with patience now, because they klHlw not whence they come, nor how they can be free; anti because, as all exist in bondage, each in his brother st'es a fellow slave, and cries. alas! "it is the lot of man." But show them ti'eedom; give them but a sight of human bliss, tell them it is within the reach of all, and prove it so ; they will no longerli\e in slavery, nor bear their chains at all. That sun has not yet risen; but his rays are just appearing: tWili!!:lIt has appeared, and ere a term of twenty years shall pass. its mighty influence shan bring on man a greater change than man has yet beheld! Upon the whole then we have endeavoured to exhibit society as it now is. We have endeavoured to show by whom wealth is created, and by whom it is cou"umed. \Ve ha\'e endeavoured to show that it is from human labour that every description of wealth proceeds; that the productive classes DO NOW support, not ollly themselves, but every unproductive member of society! that they on(lJ are productive member's of society who .tpply tlieir own hands eIther to the cultivation of th~ earth itBelf, or tu the preparing or appropriating


the produce of the earth to the uses orIife; that every indi\i· dual not so employed is a direct tax upon those who are. so employed; that, (to say nothing of the numerous a~d expeIl.8~ve class of persons, who have not even the pretcllslOn to utility in any way whatever,) all merchant.s, ma~ufacturers, .wholesale amI retail tradesmen, together with their de!'ks aSSH.tant~, and shopmen, are eit~er. lfil'ecturs and supenntenden.ts of production or mere dlstnbutors of wealth, who are paid by the labour ~f those who create it; and that. such persons ~re useful only in a sufficient number, so as to direct and supermtend labour, and to distribute its produce. We have endcavoured to show that the real income of the country, which consists in the quan~ity of w:alth. ann~ally createl] by the labour of the people, IS taken flOIll Its plOdu· cers, chiefly by the rent of land, by the r~nt of houses, bJ the interest of money, amI by the profit .obtamed by. persons who buy their labour from them at ,one pn~e and sell It at another; that these immense taxes of rent, lllterest, alld pro~~s on labour, must even continue while the SYlOt~~ of Hldlvldual competition stands; that in th~ new comm.umhes ALL woulll be pl'oductive members of 80clet~; exceptmg. only the persons absolutely required in unpl"OductlVe occupatlOlls, who would also devote their time and talen~8 to th~ general. good, anI} that NO ONE would be taxed either With rent, mterest, or profit on his l~bou~.. . And we thmk It must be plam to· all, that. they, who me now supporting thems~lves in pove~·ty; the nllddhn~ class~s in decency; and the Illgller clas;;es In luxury; may, oy much less labour applied exclttliively to their own advantage, ~url'l.mnd themselves with every comfort, alld forever bid adieu, eve.a to the most distant apprehension of want or poverty; ~s It ii certain that by thus acting, they Will not only be gamel's IIf all that is now appropriated to the use of those who do nothin... towards the production of that which they consume, but t~t they enabled to. remove the greatest of all hUIIljJl errors, the lmut ofp1"oduetwn.. .. In this consists the power and practlcablhty of our syste",!; its power, by advancing the J?roducers of .wealth to a ~ond.ltion in life incomparably sUl?en?r to that whlc~ they can obtam by any other means; by affordmg them fOl' lIttle labo~r, a~d no anxiety, five times the adv.antages. they ~I~~ ob~al~ With immoderate labour and unceaSIn'" anxiety. I hiS Will tnduce every labourin... and poor man toejoin our communities; need we add that aPf our other classes, from the highest to the lowb9 est will be compelled to follow their example: and its practi~~ hility, in the perfect ease with which even a small sum may be so applied as to put that power in action, which, when fairly exhibited eyen on a small scale, for the reasons we have stated, nothing can resist. Clearly then, the institutions of society are wretchedly unfit for the purpose for which they are intended. Their object is t~ pr?mote the happiness of man; their effect is to perpetuate hiS mIsery. If we have been considered, in some instances, severe, we regl'\~t it, but it is a subject which calls for fearless exposure, and it will ever meet with it from us. \Ve value the goodwill of our fellow men; but we place a much hi...her value on the cause of truth, and of human prosperity. e In a future I,ecture we shall endeavour to explain another set of arrangements on the basis of a national capital, by the introduction of which, the only limits to our wealth would be the exhaustion of our productive powers, and the satisfaction of our wants. The plans to which we allude, are alto~ther different from those proposed by Mr. Owen, and we willingly admit, that they are altogether interior to them; but we entertain a hope that they will be useful in proving to the world, that unity of interest is in every way consistent with individuality and Ilistinetions of property, and at a period like the present, when we hesitate not to say, that society is on the eve of relinquishing fore\'er the commercial principles on wllich it has hitherto acted, we think that too many modifications of the same fundamental principles cannot be laid before the public; for out of each something advantageous may perhaps be selected. X;:sD OF THE FIRST LECTURE,