Hide Articles List

4 articles on this Page



ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT. THURSDAY —In the House of Commons.— The Navy Es- tilit(ites.-A-lr.Cobdeti called attention to the large number of obsolete vessels of war in the British Army, and io the con- duct of our naval administration, which had produced this stite of things He would, he said, what he meant by ob- solete vessels of wars." We had now, besides corvettes and small vessels, 106 wooden steam line-(-f-bittle ships or frigates, and, after the invention of a kind of artillery which projected shells not vertically, but horizontally, with all the precision of the ordinary artillery, these wooden vessels were rendered obsolete, not by iron-clad vessels of war alone, but they were objectionable before an iron-did ves- sel was made. Since the introduction of iron-clad vessels, indeed, wooden ships of war were not merely worthless, but a source of weaktip-s. There had been no want of warning we had warnings from all quarters. He considered that the Admiralty was responsible for E10,000,000 wasted upon these Useless wooden line-of-battle ships. On whom did the blaine rest? It must be divided, he said, between the two siflls of the House he referred to a variety of documents and de- tailed statements relating to the NiVY of France as well as that of Lngland in order to establish his conclusions, and he cited a declaration of Lord C. P-get. in 18o3 when out of office, which he contrasted with st-temenis inade by him in rnovinst the Navy Estimates in 1860 and 1861. Looking at what Lord C. Paget had done, and what Sir J. Pakington had contributed to, in this waste of public money, he thought they must feel some remorse, and hoped that the House would take warning and not allow itself to be frightened into such extravagance again. If thfse wooden ships were not only useless, but positively dangerous to their crews, 30,000 men of the num- ber voted were not wanted, and it was competent to the House to review, and, if necessary, reverse its vote. He in- sisted that they were not doing justice to their constituents by voting 76,000 men when it could be demonstrated that that number could not be employed. Lord C. Paget, having stated the views of the Admiralty with reference to the masters of the Navy, proceeded to re- ply to Mr. Cobden, who proposed to reduce the number of seamen. But the great mass of men in wooden ships were employed, not in large but in small vessels, on distant sta- tions. He complained of the broad statements by Mr. Cob- den, and defended the late and the present Admiralty, who were quite right in making great exertions at particular periods to put the Navy in an efficient state. Mr. Cobden, he observed, had not well timed his criticisms; he had waited until the events were over, when it was safe to criticize. Sir J. Pakington complained that Mr. Cobden had made R violent attack upon him and bis administration of the Navy without giving him notice, and thereby enabling him to refer to documents. He vindicated himself and the Go- vernment of Lord Derby against the charges made by Mr. Cobden,—whose speeches on naval affairs were, he said full of misstatements.—and explained the views & policy of that Government in relation to our Navy. In conclusion, he de- clared that a more unfounded attack than that of Mr. Cob- den had never been made. Sir M. Peto appealed to figured calculations to show that Mr. Cobden had not made his statements without good grounds. Sir C. Wood showed hovy much expenditure had been un- avoidedly incurred in the Navy by changes in the construo- tion of ships of war, and the necessity of meeting sudden exigencies. The House then went into a Committee of Supply on the remaining Navy Estimates, which were agreed to after dis- cussion. FKIDAY.—In the House of Lords.—The jfLmericanMail. Lord Hardwicke asked whether there was any intention to make any alteration as to the port of departure or destina- i tion of the vessels of the Atlantic Royal Mail Steam -Na,iga. tion Company carrying the mails to America, in connection With the proposed restoration of the Galway subsidy; and Whether any arrangement to that effect was contemplated by the Government or proposed by the company. Lord Stanley of Aiderley answered the questions in the negative, for no propositions at all had been made by the company on the subject. The question had never been entertained as to the departure from an English instead of an Irish port. In the House of Commons.-The Brazilian Dispute.— Mr. Bramley-Moore called attention to the papers and Correspondence laid upon the table with reference to Brazil, and moved the following resolution :Ttiat this lious e has learnt with regret the interruption of amicable relations be tween this country & Brazil, & expresses the desire that Her Majesty's Government may take such measures to restore a cordial understanding between the. two countries as may be consistent with the character and honour of this country, and the dignity and honour of a fri, ndly and independent Power." After remarking upon the long-continued bar- mony tha bad subsisted between the two countries, and upon the large amount of trade which had been jeopardized by recent occurrences, he proceeded to give the details of the transactions arising out of the wreck of the Prince of W ales. He defended the people on the coast of Brazil, in t-he pro vinee of Rio Grande, where the wreck took place, from the stigma attempted to be cut upon them, of being wreckers and murderers; insisting that, on the contrary, they were humane and hospitable towards shipwrecked persons, their conduct contrasting favourably with that of the inhabitants on certain parts of the oast of England and of her enlonies He complaint d of the manner in which the offer of arbitra- tion had been made, and he attributed the consequences of this affir-which, he said, it would take years to obliterate from the minds of the Brazilians-to the conduct of Mr. Consul Vereker. The object of his motion was to open a way to a course of action that would restore a cordiality of feeling between the two countries. Mr. Collier—who had given notice of an amendment (wi-ich be could not move in point of form), "That this House, while it expresses regret at the late temporary intc rruption of our amicable reiaiolls with Brazil, at the san.e time recognize tb, ddy of Her Maj sty's Govern- ment to extend Its protection to Bnti-h subject* in all p"rt- of the world" -lIrgu. d that, i, the re«o>ution « as n emit as a vote of censure upon tin G ■vernmeiit. the vote a-isuii- deserve-! and, if i,' t. tt.t there was no «ri und ft adllp. Inil it. He b-ed this arg>jf?.tnt up' n what he loainairtei to tie the ease against, the Brazilian Government, as shown by tie papers, and upon the la**of nations applicable t > the faits. 1', f'oisll1g that the inhabitants of the coast, the scene of the «reck, sc. far from being the simple and inoffen- eivt brings desciii ed by Mr. Moore, had bt-rn represented by their own countrymen as pirate*, leckles- of life and pro- p'lMy, he Lii,e a minute* i.arr.>ti*e of the tole htl'.ir, and of the conduct of the pai ties, official or otherwise, connected with it It the course of it he denounced Ihl attempt nji.tle iy th, Brazilian aothoiitiisto blacken C'sul Vereker, v*ho !e asseiteo. had iitsi.har. ed his do• y *»itu the utmost faithfulm ss. The facts he ift'lee, he contended, ii,dt- a can. against, the Br ziliai <i vt t nnn i,t f a ei ial ,r a delay of justix, And in (-Ittier (-a: e d dalln arose against that Govt ri.Dien' f. r redress, and Nl,, it>ier» w uid bav* tailed in their duty if they hao not taken the cou se they h (1 adopted —a course in accordant t with the principles oi international law and the li-ng-establisbed policy 01 this country. Lord It C, cil said the simple question was, whether the Brazilian Government had done or fai^o to do anything that justified the course taken by ours. Flovii an ,f the case he drew conclusion* more favourable totbeB.azitihn au,i,oritiEs, and les- to the advantage of Consul Vereker, than those of Mr. Collier, relying upon the evidence of the excitement and delusion of the Consul, He adverted to another case of diHerence with the Brazilian Government (now under reference to the Kiug of tlu Belgians), ;ind to certain ludicr u- incidents connected with it, and complained of the tone of Lord Russell's correspondence wi h secondary Powers in comparison with his honeyed accents towards those that were ifrst-rate. Nir. Layard said he should confine himself to the diplo- matic action of the Goviroment in this matter, which he would show was neither hasty nor unjust. The wreck of the Prince of Wales on the coast of Albaroao should have been promptly brought to the notice of the British consul by the local authorities, but this was not done. The authorities in the province should have gone down to the coast to make inquiries, and this was not done. In fact, t ti, re was not one of the local authorities that had not failed in duty. When Lord Russell received a report of the affair from Consul Vereker—who, he remarked, had been dealt with m. st unfairly-his action was simply within the forms of diploma, y he demanded, as he had a right to do, compensation for the plunder of the vpssd. Had the course ad mtfl Dot been taken, the Government would have been reproached with apathy. What could they nave lone Oe- stues, unless they asked the House to pay COnIPCUSatiOD ? No Government could have acted otherwise than they had done, and if the Brazilian Government had acted as that of England had done in a similar case of wreck, there would have been an end of the matter. It was the duty of tue Gm ernmcnt to protect the property and the lives of Her Majesty's subjects, and he believed that, if the Resolution were carried, it would have a fatal influence upon British interests and lives throughout the world. Mr. Cobden said he was in this difficulty in regard to this case, that he could not believe in the competency of the witnesses. He took exception to Mr. Consul Vereker as a witness in the case, and he adverted to some of that gentleman's proceedings and correspondence to show he baid, the condition of his mind, which would render him incompetent in any court of justice: and he was the only witness to ceitain facts. Assuming, what was probable, that some of the jropeity of the wrecked bark was plundered, in,1 that some of the ciew were murdered, this would not found a claim against the Brazil Government, unless its complicity wt re proved, and this proof was wanting. The British merchants in Brazil were unanimous in disapprov- ing the course adopted by their Government, being con. vinced of the dtsire of tbat of Brazil to cultivate friendly relations with this country. The case showed the great advantage that would lesult from the publication of diplorr atic correspondence, not after, but at the time it took place. The Solicitor General said he had expected to receive some new li",l.t upon this subject from Mr. Cobden, but he had been disappointed be had oniy made a f. eble attempt to throw discredit upon the evidence of a servant of the country who had discharged his duty most faiihlullr, and Upon wbo86«sole evidence the case did 11 it depend, as Mr. Cobden had alleged. The principle of this case was not open to mistake or misunderstanding It A as the duty of a Government t protect iU subjects and to suppress outrage and wror.g, especially from other nations; anu lie undertook to s how, from the eviaenee supplied by the Br„ziiii»n Government itself, that Btitiah subjects had sustained 1Vrnn¡¡-. for which they were entitled to redress. With this object he entered upon a close and critical examination of the evidence furnished in the papers, and extracted a strong body of proofs, which, when pressed upon the Brazilian Government, had been put aside. He contended that the Government had acted in this case bona fide, in fulfilment of its duty to teach all Governments, strong or weak, that British subjects could not be wronged with im- putily. Mr Brrmler.Moore offered to withdraw his motion, but It va, put and lIe!latied. ??07?/??Tb? House then went into Committee 'IJlun the Customs Acts (Tobacco Duties), when the Chancellor of the Exchequer moved a resolution, "Thllt the dutv of Customs on unmanufactured tobacco imported into Great Britian and Ireland which shall contain less than 101b. per cwt of moisture, shall be 3. 6d. per lb. which was agreed to. MONDAY.—In the House of Lords. -.F,,eelbold Estates. Lord Grey moved for a Select Committee to inquire whether It is proper that the power already given to landowners to 01,16ras their estotes with terminable atiaaitiog, in order to raise money for the improvement of their land by draining and building, should be extended so as to enable them to raise money on similar terms lor the purpose of taking shares in railways calculated to incrjue the value of their pro- perty; and, further to inquire under whIt conditions and limitations such power ought to be granted, if given at all. Lord Relesdale would oot oppose the motion, but consi- dered the proposal mischievous and impracticable. Lord Granville, Lord Stanhope, and the Lord Chancellor su;p rted the motion, which was finally agreed to. In the House of C inm,)ns.-Tlte Bud/et.-In answer to Mr. Hankey, the Chancellor of the Exchequer stid it was not intended to bring on the Budget before Easter, but on an early day after Easter. Transportation. — Mr. Adderley moved a resolution, an address to Her Majesty, thanking Her Majesty for having issuedaconomission of inquiry into the operation of the Acts relating to transportation and penal servitude, and into the manner in which sentences under the provisions i of those Acts have been carried out, and praying that, pending that inquiry, the conditions on which any remis- sion of punishment or licenses to be at large are given may j be strictly enforced according to the intentions of those Acts. His object, he said, was that the House should presi the Government to do what they ought to have done at first,-to put the present law.in force. If the report of the commission was long delayed, were we to remain, he asked, under the existing system of liberating convicts upon a ticket. of leave, under which there was no check upon their actions, and which was a mere sham and delusion ? But supposing tiie Commissioneis would report in a short time, and supposing they should recommend a change of the law before it was altered. That law, he contended, had been departed from in practice. The discipline in prison was lax, the remissions were not granted as a reward for good conduct only, and the conditions under which they were given were not fulfilled, although less stringent than those annexed to licenses in Ireland. Having shown that the law and the practice were at variance, that this was a state of things dangerous to the country, and likely to pro- duce a recurrence of the acts of last year, he asked the House to agree to the resolution. Sir G. Grey said it would be extremely inconvenient for the House to agree to the resolution, and, without waiting for the information obtained by the commission, to pledge itself to an address that went far beyoni the occasion and that would not accomplish the object Mr Adderley had in view. The efforts of the police and the sentences of the judges had checked the crimes of last year, and while the subject was under investigation the House, which would soon be in possession of the report of the Commissioners, would be acting prematurely and most unwisely in pledging i itself to the address. He should therefore abstain from going fully into the subject. Having pointed out misap- prehensions under which, he said, Mr. Adderley laboured iu respect to the law and the practice, and having given ex- planations regarding certain statements made by him, he suggested a practical evil which might follow upon the adoption of the address. The motion was withdrawn. Sir H. Willoughby called attention to the payment of X19,385 for German military settlers at the Cape, iu Vote No. 3, Army Accounts, 1860-61. He observed that a very important principle was involved in this payment. He asked by what authority the W ar-oijice and the Ireasury had made this payment, which appeared to him to have been in violation of the financial principles recognized by the House. Mr. W. Williams complained of the exorbitant amount of the Army Estimates and the unnessary number of troops. Sir G. Lewis, in reply to Sir H. Willoughby, explained the circumstances under which the payment hal been transferred from another vote, which, he said, was perfectly regular under the existing law. Sir G. Lewis moved the Army Estimates. After referring to the reasons which had caused a considerable increase in the charge of the army since the period previous to the Cri- mean war, he congratulated the Committee upon its dimi- nution this year, the amount of the present Estimates being EI,000,000 less than that of laot year's, which was Y,16,060,350, this year's Estimates amounting to £ 15,060,237. The number of men, which was last yeir 152,403, was this year 143,242, being a reduction of 4,161 men, which had been effected, not by a diminution of the number of batta- lions, which was the same as last year, but by reducing 100 rauk and file in each battalion, with a few exceptions and he ta,ed the grounds upon which the Government did not think themselves justified in proposing a less number of battalions. After explaining the principal votes, and the reason of the increase or diminution of their sums, he moved the first vote of 14R 242 for the land forces. General Peel objected that the Estimate did not show the correct number of men, there being two Indian regi- ments employed in China not included and he moved that the number should be increased by so many men. The Chairman decided that this motion could not be adopted without a departure from the rules of the Committee of Supply. Mr. W. Williams moved a reduction of 10,000 men in the vote but, after much discussion, the motion was nega- tived upon a division by 77 to 19. The vote was then agreed to. Upon the first money vote, General Peel moved to reduce the amount by C38 000, on account of the two regiments in China before referred to. Sir G. Lewis said there had been no attempt to withdraw theset-orps from the notice of the Committee, which had ample power over the expenditure, the regiments being put upon the E,timates. Upon a division, the amendment was negatived by 64 to 58. The Chairman was ordered to report progress.



- - _- -.- -_- - -MARRIAGE…