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ORDERS IN COUNCIL.
Lord Castlereagh moved that the order of the day for the Call of the House should be read, for the purpose of its being discharged, when
Mr. Brougham rose and said, that after what had passed on Tuesday night, he little thought it would be necessary for him again to trouble the House upon the subject of the Orders in Council. He little thought that in so short a space as three days, any thing could have taken place on that point which could make it requisite for him to persist in hanging over the heads of Members, many of whom were remaining in town to the great injury of their affairs, the necessary measure of a Call of the touse. Little did he imagine, indeed, after what had occurred on Tuesday night last, after what was then said by a noble lord opposite, and in the confidence of which he had withdrawn his motion, though, had he persisted in it, he was sure every object of it would have been obtained upon a division-little did he imagine there would have existed any subsequent cause, imposing upon him the painful necessity of again standing up in that House, upon the question of the Orders in Council. He did hope from the explanations of the noble lord, from the various interrogatories that were put to him, which interrogatories were followed up by other statements on the part of the noble lord, that there was an end of the question. Those hopes he shared with all the great mercantile persons in London, and with all the great trading and manufacturing districts; he had received letters from various parts of England, where the happy tidings had arrived, all teeming with expressions of joy and exultation at the event : a joy and exultation so honest, so sincere, so gratifying, that if the House could hear them they would rejoice in what they had done, even if their labours produced no greater extension of bappiness-(hear, hear!)- But how bitter would be their disappointment, to find that they had been jugglel with; that in substance there was to be no conciliation with America; that the Orders in Council were not, in fact, 10 be given up; and that nothing was to be done by which one little of benefit would be obtained for this country ?(hear, hear!)-It was distinctly understood in the House on Tuesday—at least he so understood it, and he was sure many of his honourable friends did that they were to be iminediately suspended (hear, hear!)-but now they would not be suspended until the expiration of six weeks, or at least until some negociator could be shipped off for America -the only thing which it was now probable we should export at alla laugh) and a communication from the Government of the United States returned. A limited time, also, for this suspension was now talked of; but he understood no such thing on Tuesday: now, however, they were to be revived at the expiration of six months, unless a certain something was done. And what was that certain something? Why, unless France revoked her Berlin and Milan Decrees; or, in the event of her not revoking them, unless America made common cause with us against France. Was that a revocation of the Orders in Council? Was that a suspension? The merchants of the country were fooled, and that House was fooled, by what he would pronounce a mere mockery on the part of Government-(hear, hear!)--Every hour since last Tuesday had produced some new retractation by the Ministers, of what was then understood to be their intention. It now appeared that during that suspension---so to call a thing wbicb be knew not bow to name-every American vessel sailing to England would be equally brought into England, not indeed for adjudication, but till it should be known whether America would act as we wished her. If she did so act, then they would be at liberty to pursue their voyage after such delay, and difficulty and inconvenience; but if America should not accede to our proposals, then they were to be proceeded agaiøst in our Prize Courts. And could that be called conciliation ? Could that be considered as an open, frank, and manly proceeding, or as a niggardly, stingy, shuffling, and prevaricating measure ? And were not the dignity and honour of the country more compromised by the manner of the concession, than by the concession itself? His object in calling upon the attention of Ministers, was to implore them not to commit themselves by issuing any act, which should be just strong enough to do mischief, and to sacrifice principle, without producing one particle of good to the country. There was yet time to reinct, and lie had good hopes i hey would, for it was evident they would give up any thing rather than their places~(Heur, hear! and laughing.) -He and his friends were only asking them to give up a measure, and they bad been doing notbing else the last week but giving up measures. First, there was Colonel M-Mahon,
then the Barracks at Mary-le-bone, and afterwards those at Bristol and Liverpool, and next, as he thought, the Orders in Council; and really all those measures were exactly such as they should have recommended, so that the country was going on now precisely the same as if the two sides of the House had changed places, with this remarkable feature in favour of the noble lord and his colleagues, and most consolatory to their feelings, that they were not banished to dark and dreary night of the Opposition-(hear, and laugh-, ter.) He did not wish, however, to wander into any thing like gaiety. He felt too deeply, that by the measures, the prevaricating measures which it was intended to adopt, they were only sowing the seeds of new contention, new retaliations, and increased misery for the country. How different from the manner in wbich it was supposed the question was carried on Tuesday! As soon as it was known that the Orders in Council were to be suspended immediately, new life and vigour were infused into the commercial world haste and activity prevailed on all sides, and nothing was witnessed but joy. He had seen and convi rsed with merchants who had large and extensive dealings with America. One of them had transactions to the amount of one million sterling, and another had actually prepared to export to that amount, which exportation alone would have given employment to 100,000 individuals in the manufacturing districts of Yorkshire-heur, hear!) To-day, however, every act of trade was suspended; not a shipment was going on, and all in consequence of the explanation which had taken place last night, on the part of the Ministers, to a body of the witnesses who were in town, and who waited upon them for that purpose-(Fear, hear!) The proposition which was now to be made to America was, as he understood it, that the Orders in Council should be revived unless France abolished her Berlin and Milan Decrees, or unless America made common cause with England against France, if she did not abolish them. Surely such a propo. sition was enough to justify him in calling upon the noble lord and his colleagues so to conduct their measures, that they might at least carry with them a decisive character. But what would be the effect of the one they now proposed? It was making it rest altogether upon the will of Buona parte. This, however, he could tell them, that if they hung up the opening of the American market on any thing wbich Buonaparte would do, it would never be opened. VOL. III.-1812.
France would rather perish than do that which might benefit us. What, in fact, was the substance of such a measure? wc were afraid of France; we dreaded her power : but she was beyond our reach to injure. America, however, we could touch ; she was a weaker power, and her we were resolved to touch. We called upon her to intercede for us, with respect to France, and if she refused, we were determined to make her the sufferer. Was that the way in which a great nation like this should proceed? He called upon the noble lord and his colleagues to pursue a different course, one that was frank, manly, and dignificd, and one that might accomplish the necessary object, that of an immediatc relief to the thousands of starving manufacturers, who bung in breathless expectation upon the event of their conduct. He should conclude by giving a notięc of a motion on Wednes. day next, upon the subject of the Orders in Council, unless before that time any act of the Government should appear which might substantially accomplish the suspension of those Orders-The honourable Member also moved, that the Order for the Call of the House should stand for Thursday next.
Lord Castlereagh observed, that he had never listened to an argument more founded upon misrepresentation than the one wbich had been used by the right honourable gentleman, towards whom he could safely assert, that neii her he nor his colleagues felt the slightest sentiment of gratitude for his forbearance in not dividing the House on Tuesday last, confident as he was, that had a division taken place, the result would not have been what the honourable Member so certainly anticipated ; in fact, had he not felt that it would have been an unworthy triomph, he himself should have pressed the subject to a division-(hear, hear! and laughter, from the Opposition.) He was not at all disposed to discuss the arguments of the honourable gentleman, grounded, as they were, wholly upon the most extraordinary misconception and misrepresentation. He thought any discussion of the subject would come much better after the authentic act of the Government was in the possession of the House ; but at the same time he could not but reprobate that system of persons who were admitted to interviews with official
persons going immediately 10 Members of Parliament to communicate the result of such interviews, that their loose and vague accounts miglit be afterwards seriously brought forward in ibat House. ----(Ileur, hear !)-Such a practice could only tend to make persons in office decline, altogether, any conferences of that description—(hear, heur !)—He would assert also, that what had been said by the honour able gentleman was not an accurate represontation of what Government intended to do. He should wave all further discussion till the act of Government appeared, and he would let that act speak for itself. · Mr. Ponsonby inquired when it was likely that official document would appear ? and
Lord Castlereagh replied, it would certainly appear, if not in Saturday's Gazette, at least in Tuesday's.
Some further conversation took place between General Gascoigne, Lord Castlereagh, Mr. 'Baring, Mr. Wilberforce, Mr. Canning, and Mr. Rose, who observed, that so far from the rumour of the suspension of the Orders in Council being received with delight in London, he had never witnessed such a gloom over the metropolis in his life laughter from all sides.)
MINISTERIAL NEGOCIATIONS. Mr. H. Fitzgerald rose to inform the House, that he had been empowered by a noble earl (Yarmoutb) to express his sincere regret that he was precluded by a severe indisposition, which confined him to bis bed, from attend. ing his duty in liis place that day. fle (Lord Yarınooth) could bave wislied to have been present, from the nature of the discussion, to answer any questions which might have been put to him, and he did express a hope that the question might be deferred, but the honourable gentleman seeming anxious to persevere, he cleemed it due to his own honour, and due to ibe House, to express the regret he felt at being abscnt, an absence which nothing but inevitable necessity could have caused.
Mr. Sheridan- I can vonch, Sir, for the truth of all which the honourable gentleman has stated ; I called upon the noble lord in my way down to the House, and I saw, with regret, that it was impossible he could be present. I did also state to him, that as I considered that part of the question which related to our conversation, as a more marginal thing, nothing but an episode, in respect to what I was most anxious to lay before the House, I would abstain from it altogether; and having said thus much, I shall proceed to explain my motives for the motion which I intend to make. Sir, passing by with a single word, this