2 SEPTEMBER 1843, Page 10


hear the following story of the late Mr. TIERNEY or Carrvir ?—I forget which. He was at Brookes's, just before NAPOLEON'S defeat in Russia, with a knot of Whigs who had reckoned up a number of public disasters as indications of the approach of some great convul- sion in this country, and who merrily asked his opinion on the subject. "I don't know," he replied ; "it looks very black indeed ; but I have been cock. sure before now that a crash was inevitable, and then, just as things were at the worst, some d—d accident has come and put all to rights again." The frost of 1812-13 justified his caution.

I have been reminded of this tale by reflecting on the present state of English politics. Was there ever a more general dissatisfaction, or better cause for it? Who is pleased, even with himself? Never was there such need of wise and bold legislation ; never so blank a session of the Legislature. Everybody says that it would have been as well if Parliament had not met. Then as to men, which of them is trusted ? which supposed to possess any peculiar capacity for governing in these times ? which considered fit to be a leader, now that PEEL has sud- denly tumbled down to the level of Do-nothing MELBOURNE This is the perfection of laissez-faire. But has not the principle lost its efficacy as much as the religion of Jupiter and Juno? Just when the ruling class shows itself incapable of governing—when "let the people alone" is carried out to the uttermost—that people exhibits its want of govern- ment in Free-trade Leagues, in Welsh disturbances, in steady prepara- tion for an Irish rebellion, in English and Scotch Chartism, in the rup- ture of the Church of Scotland, in the "White slavery" of mills and mines, in the increase of rural pauperism and poor-rates, in the fretful whining of the middle class, and the long faces of the coward rich. Would not an account of the present state of the country be a suitable first chapter in the history of a revolution ? But we all feel that this condition of things cannot last long. TIERNEY or CREEVY, dying for any change, could not have desired a better prospect of mischief. And yet we may perceive that the viz medicatrix, which draws good Out of evil, corrects the errors of man, and disappoints alike the fears of the good and the hopes of the bad, is even now at work on the condi- tion of England. The Times remarks this gleam of sunshine in the dark prospect ; saying, in the midst of an elaborate condemnation of Parliament, Ministers, and existing parties—" A creed, both political and religious, of deeper feeling and larger basis, is coming into play ; and whether we look to Mr. C. Buller on the one side, or to Young England' on the other, there are certainly great appearances of a new style of thought and a new order of things rising up." This new style of thought, this new order of things, is a reaction against the principle of laissez-faire—a natural consequence of pursuing that principle to the extent of absolute "do-nothing." Just in proportion as we are de- prived of government, people begin to ask for more government than ever. This demand is not represented by Mr. C. HULLER and Young England alone : let us hear the Morning Chronicle, which was till Thursday last the consistent organ of the laissez-faire school of ADAM Ssurst, RICARDO, and M'Com-ocn- " The laissez-faire' system of government has bad its full swing, and exhibited iteelf in the most complete form of do.nothing.' And from one end of the land to the other, 'laissez-faire' is thoroughly and universally con- demned; and all men cry out that much is to be done—must be done, if we would preserve our national wellbeing; and that ' do-nothing' is by no means the right mode of governing this country." Hurrah l—this is capital from the old mouthpiece of bigoted laissez- faire. It is also one among many proofs, that though Ministers and Parliament have done nothing this session, something very important has been done by their inaction. In tbe absence of government, party has died. Who cares now for Tory, Whig, Radical, or what not, as a party designation ? All experience shows that it is impossible to govern a free country well without party, or save by means of party : where- fore let us expect party again as soou as we have government. Nay, an .order to have government, we must revive party. And now to the point : .government and party having ceased together, we have the op- portunity of forming a new party, whose principle it shall be to discard leissez-faire to favour of governing, zealously, actively, assiduously—in - tavola of Aeons for the people whatever their necessities require, what- ever industry and earnest forethought can devise for their advantage. There are Tories, Whigs, and Radicals, still so called, who might unite to form such a party. Any one man might form it, who had a thorough comprehension of the object, with a good stock of tolera- tion courage, and industry. It really seems more than probable that such a man will appear to supply the demand for him. It must be somebody already known to us, because time presses. I would suggest Lord ASHLEY, if he had more ambition and energy. Lord Moors-11a may, or may not, have got as free from party as Lord HOW/CH has lately appeared to be. The latter must, in the course of nature, soon enjoy the prestige of a great name ; his speeches this session were remarkable for temper, moderation of tone, and comprehensiveness of view ; and he is known to be sincere, deter- mined, and fond of hard work. But has he thrown over the laiseez- faire ? has he learned to appreciate the popular sympathies of "Young England," as expressed by Lord JOHN MANNERS? This, at all events, is certain—that you would render the country good service, if you could set it upon looking out for the man who is best qualified to con- struct a much-doing government out of the broken materials of the old parties.