16 OCTOBER 1880, Page 3

The American shipping trade is dead, owing to high wages,

protective tariffs, and it is suggested, to a growing dislike among the people for disagreeable modes of life, a dislike so great that born Americans scarcely ever become miners. Ships cannot be built in the United States cheaply enough to com- pete with British ships. The natural remedies are, of course, to abolish all duties on materials and all navigation laws, and either build cheap ships or buy them from British builders. The Americans, however, instead of that have called a Shipping Convention, which recommends that pilotage dues should be abolished, and restrictions on shipping seamen ; that the laws of admeasurement alfould be modified, so as only to mea- sure cargo-space; and that Congress should commence a system of bounties, to be paid out of Custom-house dues and a ton- nage-tax. In other words, they recommend that the American shipping trade should be carried on at a loss, and that the people of the Union should be taxed to pay for it. If the people of the Union approve, there is no objection ; but it is a costly and cumbrous way of training American sailors,— the only advantage the nation can over obtain from bounties. The same money would keep up an effective fleet, or entire schools of sailor-lads.