31 AUGUST 1867, Page 1

We publish a letter from Victoria which we recommend to

the attention of our readers. The writer is a very genuine Liberal and very free from prejudice, but the account he gives of the local legislature is certainly disheartening. In Australia, as in America, and under other forms in England, the most immediate of all dangers seems to be the rule of a plutocracy, and a pluto- cracy which prefers buying agents to accepting the responsibility

of its own power. We do not precisely see the connection, how- ever, between corruption in the legislature and a wide suffrage. The most corrupt legislature which ever sat in -France was elected by less than 300,000 electors, most of them placemen, and when our own members took money they were almost independent of their constituents. We suspect the primary source of the evll has been the parochialism of colonial and state politics. People cannot grow enthusiastic over a canal bill or a land law, and without a little enthusiasm public opinion grows corrupt. No money would buy a democratic law from the existing Congress.