London, 1st January 1532.
MR. SPECTATOR—Amongst the Answers to Questions in your last Number, have observed a letter from "A Cornubian Radical," in which he most zea- lously argues, that all those who hold the good things in the Packet establish- ment at Falmouth are entitled to continue to possess them. Differing as I do from him on this point, I beg to state my reasons for doing so. And here-I will not in9uire whether Captain Kixc has altogether 1,2001. per annum, or rot: allowing it to be but the half of this amount, I ask, ought any officer to be permitted to hold an appointment of this kind for eight or nine years, whilst there are hundreds of Captains on the list of equal pretensions, who are obliged to rub on with but their 180/. a wear? It is not on account of Captain Kixc's poli- tics that he should be supersetled—though these, if he uses the influence which Isis situation gives him in opposition to the Government measures, would be a just gpaand for removal, even if he had not served one tour, instead of just three —but it is because he has been permitted to hold this command for so long a time, that we insist on the justice of another officer's being placed in his stead— one whose services in war *have merited this appointment. It is asked by your correspondent, whether it would be right to supersede Sir MANLEY Drxosr, the Port Admiral at Devonport, and all other officers who are Tories ? I an- swer, most certainly so, if they have held their commands just treble the accus- tomed periods of service allowed to each officer of that rank. Next, with regard to the Lieutenants commanding the Falmouth packets, your correspondent clenaands why these should be removed every three years, whilst the command- Jars of the Holyhead, Harwich, and, other packets, are suffered to retain their commands for life. The answer to this is very simple,—the Falmouth packets alone are under the direction of the Admiralty ; and further, the greater part of the other packets are commanded by civilians. How far the" Cornubian Ra- dical" is correct in stating, that it is quite a lottery whether the commander of B' Falmouth packet makes any money or not, I beg him but to look to the Establishments which these officers maintain at Falmouth. I admit that, on their first appointments, they are, under the existing most objectionable system, compelled to disburse two or three hundred pounds, or more, for their outfits; and for this consideration I would, if the unofficerlike hotel system be not amended, allow them to keep their packets five years each, instead of three; but this is the extent of the indulgence proper to he allowed. I would earnestly contend, however, that the Government should take the passengers and the money. into their own hands, appointing a sort of suttler to each packet; rasndsatCt the officer commanding should have his table free, and be entitled to his just .proportion of whatever freights he might carry, in addition to his pay: for nothing can be more degrading than to see an officer, with an epaulette on his shoulder, receiving passage-money like the master of a Margate steam-boat ! With the last paragraph in the letter of the "Cornubian Radical" I fully concur ; for whilst a Captain of the Navy, of from fifteen to twenty years stand- ing.as a full Colonel, has but 1801. per annum, we find clerks in the public offices in London, who were not even born when these officers entered the Navy, with salaries of from 500/. to 1,000/. per annum each, and who, all their Jives, have been in the enjoyment of home With all its comforts. In the words, then, of your enthusiastic correspondent, I repeat—may Reform amend this ! PHILO-VERITAS. P. S.—I have observed a paragraph in your last Paper, stating that Lord ADOLPIIUS FITZCLARENCE is likely to be appointed to supersede Captain KING! This can never be intended for so young an officer,—barely eight years standing ; and more than all, he has never seen any service in his lift! This would be turning into ridicule indeed the promise, that " patronage was at an end." No Tory AiloQinistration ever went the length of this.