« PreviousContinue »
right ought to have, full power and authority to make statutes of sufficient force and validity to bind the una represented provinces in all cases whatsoever.” This will include spiritual with temporal, and taken together must operate wonderfully to your purpose, by convincing them, that they are at present under a power, something like that spoken of in the Scriptures, which can not only kill their bodies, but damn their souls to all eternity, by compelling them, if it pleases, to worship the devil.
XI. To make your taxes more odious, and more likely to procure resistance, send from the capital a board of officers to superintend the collection, composed of the most indiscreet, ill-bred, and insolent you can find. Let these have large salaries out of the extorted revenue, and live in open grating luxury upon the sweat and blood of the industrious, whom they are to worry continually with groundless and expensive prosecutions, before the above-mentioned arbitrary revenue-judges; all at the cost of the party prosecuted, though acquitted, because the king is to pay no costs. Let these men, by your order, be exempted from all the common taxes and burthens of the province, though they and their property are protected by its laws. If any revenue officers are suspected of the least tenderness for the people, discard them. If others are justly complained of, protect and reward them. If any of the under officers behave so as to provoke the people to drub them, promote those to better offices: this will encourage others to procure for themselves such profitable drubbings, by multiplying and enlarging such provocations, and all will work towards the end you aim at. XII. Another way to make your tax odious is, to
misapply misapply the produce of it. If it was originally appropriated for the defence of the provinces, and the better support of government, and the administration of justice, where it may be necessary; then apply none of it to that defence, but bestow it, where it is not necessary, in augmenting salaries or pensions to every governor, who has distinguished himself by his enmity to the people, and by calumniating them to their sovereign. This will make them pay it more unwillingly, and be more apt to quarrel with those that collect it, and those that imposed it, who will quarrel again with them, and all shall contribute to your own purpose, of making them weary of your government.
XIII. If the people of any province have been accustomed to support their own governors and judges to satisfaction, you are to apprehend, that such governors and judges may be thereby influenced to treat the people kindly, and to do them justice. This is another reason for applying part of that revenue in larger salaries to such governors and judges, given, as their commissions are, during your pleasure only, forbidding them to take any salaries from their provinces; that thus the people may no longer hope any kindness from their governors, or (in crown cases) any justice from their judges. And as the money, thus misapplied in one province, is extorted from all, probably all will resent the misapplication.
XIV. If the parliaments of your provinces should dare to claim rights, or complain of your administration, order them to be harassed with repeated dissolutions. If the same men are continually returned by new elections, adjourn their meetings to some country village, where they cannot be accoinmodated, and
there keep them during pleasure ; for this, you know, is your prerogative, and an excellent one it is, as you may manage it, to promote discontents among the
people, diminish their respect, and increase their disaffection.
XV. Convert the brave honest officers of your navy into pimping tide-waiters and colony officers of the customs. Let those, who in time of war fought gallantly in defence of the commerce of their countrymen, in peace be taught to prey upon it. Let them learn to be corrupted by great and real smugglers; but (to show their diligence) scour with armed boats every bay, harbour, river, creek, cove or nook, throughout the coast of your colonies; stop and detain every coaster, every wood-boat, every fisherman, tumble their cargoes and even their ballast inside out, and upside down; and if a pennyworth of pins is found un-entered, let the whole be seized and confiscated. Thus shall the trade of your colonists suffer more from their friends in time of peace, than it did from their enemies in war. Then let these boats' crews land upon every farm in their way, rob their orchards, steal their pigs and poultry, and insult the inhabitants. If the injured and exasperated farmers, unable to procure other justice, should attack the aggressors, drub them, and burn their boats, you are to call this high treason and rebellion, order fleets and armies into their country, and threaten to carry all the offenders three thousand miles to be hanged, drawn, and quartered.---O! this will work admirably!
XVI. If you are told of discontents in your colonies, never believe that they are general, or that you have given occasion for them; therefore do not think of applying any remedy, or of changing any offensive measure. Redress no grievance, lest they should be encouraged to demand the redress of some other grievance. Grant no request, that is just and reasonable, lest they should make another, that is unreasonable. Take all your informations of the state of the colonies from your governors and officers in enmity with them. Encourage and reward these leasing-makers, secrete their lying accusations, lest they should be confuted, but act upon them as the clearest evidence; and believe nothing you hear from the friends of the people. Suppose all their complaints to be invented and promoted by a few factious demagogues, whom if you could catch and hang, all would be quiet. Catch and hang a few of them accordingly, and the blood of the martyrs shall work miracles in favour of your pure pose*.
XVII. If you see rical nations rejoicing at the prošpect of your disunion with your provinces, and endeavouring to promote it, if they translate, publish and applaud all the complaints of your discontented colonists, at the same time privately stimulating you to severer measures, let not that alarm or offend you. Why should it ? since you all mean the same thing?
* One of the American writers affirms, " That there has not been a single instance in which they have complained, without being rebuked, or in which they have been complained against, without being punished.”-A fundamental mistake in the minister occasioned this. Every individual in New England (the peccant country) was held a coward or a knave, and the disorders, which spread abroad there, were treated as the result of the too great lenity of Britain! By the aid of this short and benevolent rule, judgment was ever wisely predetermined, to the shutting out redress on the one hand, and inforcing every rigour of punishment on the other. B.V.
XVIII. If any colony should at their own charge erect a fortress, to secure their port against the fleets of a foreign enemy, get your governor to betray that fortress into your hands. Never think of paying what it cost the country, for that would look, at least, like some regard for justice; but turn it into a citadel, to awe the inhabitants and curb their commerce. If they should have lodged in such fortress the very arms they bought and used to aid you in your conquests, seize them all; it will provoke like ingratitude added to robbery. One admirable effect of these operations will be, to discourage every other colony from erecting such defences, and so their and your enemies may more easily invade them, to the great disgrace of your government, and of course the furtherance of your project.
XIX. Send armies into their country, under pretence of protecting the inhabitants; but, instead of garrisoning the forts on their frontiers with those troops, to prevent incursions, demolish those forts, and order the troops into the heart of the country, that the savages may be encouraged to attack the frontiers, and that the troops may be protected by the inhabitants : this will seem to proceed from your ill-will or your ignorance,
* I am not versed in Indian affairs, but I find, that in April, 1773, the assembled chiefs of the western nations told one of our Indian agents,
that they remembered their father, the king of Great Britain's message, delivered to them last fall, of demolishing Fort Pittsburg (on the Ohio) and removing the soldiers with their sharp-edged weapons out of the country :-this gave them great pleasure, as it was a strong proof of his paternal kindness towards them.” (See Considerations on the Agreement with Mr. T.Walpole for Lands upon the Ohio, p. 9). This is general history : I attempt no application of facts, personally invidious. B. V.