Skip to Content
North Carolina Newspapers

Tarboro' press. volume (Tarborough, (Edgecombe Co., N.C.)) 1835-1851, August 25, 1838, Image 1

Below is the OCR text representation of this newspaper page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

Whole Ao. iv.iz. J ol XI V Xo 34 The Turbo rough Press, BY GEORGE HOWARD, i. published weekly at Two Dollars and Fifty vpar. if paid in advance or. Three a '"'hrs at the expiration of the subscription year, r Vnni period less than a year, Ttvcnt y-Jive ... ., nr month Subscribers are at liberty to 1 inym" arrears tliose residing at a distance tinvariablv p.iy in advance, or give a respon se reference" in this vicinity. Vlvertiscnients not exceeding a square will be . '!.!oj at One Dollar the first insertion, and 25 i'T'ts fir every continuance. Longer advertise U"H in like proportion. Court Orders and Ju Tc advertisements 25 per cent, higher. Ad .rtisenients must be marked the number of in Ttr'ions required, or they will be continued until I'hmviso erJered and charged accordingly. C" l etters addressed to the Kditor must be post paid or they may not be attended to. DE3IOCKATJC UEPUBL.ICAX To the I'cople of' the United States. Continue J.) One of the strongest temptations for the collection of large revenue?, and the con tinuance 'f which is most to be guarded auainsi, would be the deposile of the pub lic money in the banks. If deposited in banks nominally for safe-keeping, but really to be lent out to their customers, the banks will have an interest in swelling the amount, because, by lending, they receive a profit upon ii; and their customers will have an interest in the same policy, because they can bor row more money, and get mote indulgence by it. By these means money may be Tvronafnlly taken from its true owners by l!ie Government, not for the public str vire, but to be devoted to private purposes ItiMvely. The people may be taxed that the banks rrm have more money to lend, and their customers more to borrow. We are op poed to taxation for such purposes. We deny the right of the Government to take the money of the citizen and hand it over to the hanks to be used by them and their customers, in their private transactions. Tli1 taxing power was not granted for such purposes; ,md when such are its results, re form should be the watchword ol every Republican. We are in f.ivor of such changes in our system, as will factually prevent the .ipplicatioo of the money to private purp ies. The means of accomplishing this great reform, are of less importance than i he end to he obtained. We, how ever, perceive no means so fiVct'ue and certain, as to let the Government keep its oanmiupy, by ihe instrumentality if its O'.vn officers, who shall be put under bonds, will) heavy securities, not to use or lend it; and, in addition, making it highly penal in them so to do. It is not perceived why the Government cannot make its money as secure as a bank. All the usual means of security enjoyed by the banks are within t reach; in addition to which, it has abso lute power over the persons of its agents, which the banks have not. Banks can not, by regulations, punish their cashiers aiul clerks for faithlessness and crime with the penitentiary or otherwise; but the Go vernment can. It may command all the buddings, walls, vaults, bolts, and other sakguard which the banks can; and, in addition, may dispose of the personal lib erty of its faithless agents according to its ;v''li expressed through its legislative and Judicial authorities. Why, then, may it n 't keep its own money as safely as the banks can keep theirs, or that deposited "I'll them? That it can do so, under pro per regulations, is too obvious to be doubt e,k Besides, at places where it might be more convenient, the use of the bank build lnos themselves could be secured, still pre serving the public money from private uses. Why, then, should not the Government keep "us own money? It is objected that the keeping of its own money would dan gerously increase the patronage of the Vecutive. Is 11 possible any one can be 'eve that the appointment of ten to twen ty officers and clerks, involves a more ex tensive and dangerous influence than the Pver directly to affect the pecuniary in terests of the eight thousand two hundred Tid ninety bank officers, the three hundred at'd seventeen thousand stockholders, and l"e six hundred and fifty-three thousand tutors? That power the Executive has, s long as he is authorized to place the F-'oitc money m banks to be lent out fur P'lvate purposes. Although all the banks Ynnot be depositories, all think they find their interest in an extension of the credit sytem,by the aid of the public money; juuuion thereto, all are subiect. mi- ur sur h a system, to the influence of hope anil r. r . - r ' irom the favors or Irovvns of the Resident cr Secretary of the Treasury. It is not by keeping the public money that! a Government acquires influence or n ,r but by spending or lending it. One man lias a milium of dollars to lend; another has a million to keep, being forbidden to lend a dollar of it. Which will be the most courted, and have the most influence among his neighbor? The answer is loo obvious to need suggestion. It is thus w ith the Executive. If ymi would curtail his influence in the most effectual manner, ! require h.m inflexibly to keep the public money for public purposes. If you w ould extend Ips influence in a manner the most alarming, authoi ize him to lend the public money, or cause it to be lent, by depositing it in banks, or otherwise. The idea that the actual custody of the public money by public officers appointed under the authority of Congress would place it in ie under the control of the Pre sideut than it has heretofore been, is wholly deceptive and fallac ious. His power over it would not be at all in creased by this measure. The President could not, under the old or the proposed system, draw from the Treasury a single dollar, not even for the payment of his own salary. Thai operation is effi cled by the warrant of the Secretary ol the Treasury, upon the Treasurer's check or order upon a bank or other depository. It is through these means that the President, and every other executie officer receives even his salary. II the 'Treasurer had the actual custody of the public money, instead of keeping it in banks, the President would be obliged still to gel a wan am Irom the Secretary of the Treasury before .e could rertiw his salary. It is said if the Tieasurer had the actual custody of the money, the Pre sident might compel him to put it into his possession by the exercise of his authority and power over an fficial dependant. But is it not just as easy, by the exercise ol the same authority and power, to com pel the Treasuier to draw a her k on a bank? And could not the President or his instiuunnt obtain the money Irom a bank on such a check, just as easy he could wrest it from the Tieasurer's actual pos sesMoiif Would it noi, indeed, lie a little easier to compel the Treasurer to draw a check, than to count out a large sum ol money? As lor the bank?, they never have claimed the right to dispute the Trea suier's cheih, their Outy being ineiely l pay it. When there were thirty or forty millions of dollars in I lie 'Treasury, there was nothing in the law, or in the structure of the system, to prevent the txci utive efii cers from checking every dollar of it out ol the banks, if inclined to apply it to im proper objects. Indeed, until 1829, there w as no pi actical restraint upon the Trea surer w halsoever; the sole authority upon wnich the banks paid out the public mo ney, was his individual check; and the re straint then imposed in requiring that the warrant of the Secretary ol the 'Treasury should accompany the Treasurer's diet k, was one of Executive regulation, ai d noi of Congressional legislation. 'The dan gers conjured up from this source are there fore altogether imagmaiy. 'The union of the purse and the sword, so much deprecated by our English ant es tors, was altogether a different matter. By them the power to raise an army was called "the sword," and the power to lev) and collect taxes to support it was called "the purse." The English Constitution conceded to the Executive the power to raise an army, or the power of "the sword,'1 but reserved to Parliament the power to lay taxes to support it, or the power of "the purse." It was the attempts of Charles the First to raise taxes lor the support ol his army w ithout the consent of Parliament, thereby uniting "the purse and the sw ord," which produced a bloody revolution and brounht him to the bloik. Our Constitution concedes to the Execu- f live neither ol these powers. rie can neither raise an army, nor collect taxes to support it, without the consent ol Con gress. In their hands are both "the purse and the sword," and the Executive is but an instrument to carry their determma tions into effect. He wields neither the purse uor the sword otherwise than as the subordinate ol the legislative power. Hence it will be perceived that the union of "ihe purse and the sword" is a very dif ferent thing from the custody of the public monev bv Executive officers. lu every Government under the sun, the most free as well as the most tyrannical, the keeping and paying out of the public treasure under the authority ol law lias oeeu cou&iuereu an Executive function. When before was it thought to be dangerous to liberty? Do we find a trace ol such danger in me an rieni Republics or the modern; among the . i i Greeks, in liome, in ownzenauo, ui Holland? Was such a question ever rais ed among the jealous patriots of England? Is it now a ground of jealousy or alarm in any other Republic of America, or in any limited monarchy of Europe? No such danger was ever perceived, no such ques tion was ever heard of. To originate it required the inventive faculties of our own ingenious countrymen, stimulated by those lively principles ol human action, political ambition, and pecuniary interest. It is not extraordinary that those who wish to profit by ihe use of the public money pro nounce it unsafe in any other hands, nor that those who are in eager pursuit of the prize of power join in ihe cry. Hut an impartial people, who have no interest in being deceived, will only give due weight to the argument and appreciate the motive in which it originates. What would be said in England if some sensible patriot, to prevent an "union of ihe purse and the sword," should propose to keep the money of ihe United Kingdom in the treasury of Belgium, Hanover, or Holland. 1 hose nations are scared more independent of the Rritish Govern ment and nation than our banks are of the Government and people of the United Slates; nor are they, on some occ isions, more hostile than a portion of the banks. Is it possible that a Government which! puts its means so completely beyond its w n control, can, on all occasions, perform its engagements, keep its faith, or protect ihe people by whom it is established, and whose money supports it? It has hereto fore been deemed enough that the legisla- iive pow er can, at will, diminish ihe amount of money to be collected, and prescribe ie regulations under winch it shall be ept. Ii has not been considered necessa ry to establish an independent branch of ihe Government for thai purpose, and least of all to introduce foreign powers tniall irresponsible to the people, often too strong for the Govei ument, and always devoted to making money out of all circumstances and vicissitudes. 'To make keepers of ihe public money out of such materials, is in character with those kingly notions which would give to our State banks a monarch corporation for a master, upon the plea that the people cannot control them. It is objected that this is a measure of hostility to the banks. 'The Government is not to be a hoaider of money. What it collects it soon expends; and it has seldom occurred in our history that it has had on hand, at the same time, more than six or ight millions of dollars. It ought not to continue any system ol revenue which w ill enable it to hold a regular surplus ex ceding five millions. This is not more than a large bank finds it necessary to re tain to carry on a safe business. The late Rank of the United Slates frequently had from ten to fifteen millions. For ears to come, it is probable that the whole amount of money in the Treasury will not average three millions, and will scarcely be equal to one week's recent importation of spe cie. It is idle to suppose that this can ma terially effect the operations of the banks. The only mode in w hich their operations will be effected is, that they will no longer have the privilege of lending out money which is not their own. Is the withdrawal from them of this privilege nccessaril' an act of hostility? A farmer has been in the habit of depositing his money in a bank, but as he could not get it to pay his hired hands when he wanted it, the bank having slopped payment, he concluded that it was more safe, and more just to his creditors, to keep it himself. Was there any hostility to tlie bank in that? It is just so with the Government. The banks had lent out ihe public money, and could not collect it With millions nominally in the Treasury, the Treasury Department could scarcely pay a dollar in the legal currency of the country. It does not desire to be again placed in such a situation. It does not wish to be dependant on those whom its experience has taught it are not always to be depended upon. The Government only desires to man age its own business in its own way; to let the banks alone, and to be let alone by them; to use them when the public inleresi and safety require it, but not to be com pelled to use them to the public detriment Is it just to charge every citizen with hos tility to the banks who does not keep his monev in them? The idea is absurd, bm not more so than that a Treasury iudepen dent of the banks is in hostility to them. It is objected that it is a measure of hos tility to a sound currency. The reverse ol this proposition is true. It will preveiu Ihe inflation of our paper currency, whicl arises from the use of the public money and, in that degree, tend to pervent fluclua lions, and suspensions of specie payments Bv exhibiting an inflexible determinalioi on the part of the Government to recog nize nothing as money but specie, or u equivalent, it will inspire the banks with salutary caution, not by the excess oi men issues to endanger thai standard. In fine, it will leave the banks to be sustained by their own capital and prudeuce, without tempting idem with ihe uncertain and dan gerous aid of a fluctuating public deposile. It is objected lhat this measure is hostile to the lights of properly, and essentially levelling in iis character. The reverse ol tins is true. 'The money of the Govern ment is the property of the people. 'The object of an Independent Treasury is to preserve litis property for ihe use of the true owners, instead of handing it over to those lu w hom il does not belong, to be lent out for their emolument. Its tenden cy is to protect individual property also. Nothing is mure destructive to ihe rights of properly than fluctuations in the stand ard by w hi h its value is measured. 'The tendency of this measure is, to prevent those fluctuations, by preventing, in some degree, the expansions and contractions produced by ihe over-issues of batiks, and thus give stability to property. It is alleged that this measure is a part of a scheme lo force on the country a cur rency purely metallic. This is unfounded. ' A specie currency for the ordinary daily transactions of life, and such a specie basis for paper as will always ensure its conver tibility into specie, when required by the holders, is what is contended for-; and such is the only tendency and real design of tin measure proposed, so far as the banks an concerned. A purely metallic crrenc is no part of the Independent Treasury plan, as proposed by the Administration, and supported by its friends. In fine, w ill' the exception of a very small number, who are in favor of depositing ihe public money penally in banks, the question at issue be tween us, and those who favor a deposile in the banks, may be stated thus: They wish to have ihe public money deposited in banks, not to be kept by them, but to be ent out lor private uses. V e are opposed to lending out the public money for piivate uses; and, efitctnally to prevent it, are in favor of having it kept by public officers, under heavy bonds and securities not lo use or si.fler il lo be used for any private pui poses whatsoever, and to pay it out only in pursuance of appropriations made by law, as prescribed in the Constitution. We do not think that to furnish the banks w ith money to lend or accommodate the customers ol banks with the use of the public money or property, in one of ihe purposes lor which the power to lay duties and taxes was delegated lo the Congress of the Untied Slates. Oil the contrary, we look upon the em ployment of it, knowingly and deliberately lor such a purpose, or where su h is known to be the natural anil necessary result, ns an abuse of the most riggravaied charac ter. Ii is taking one man's property and ddiveiing it lo another, under lalse pre tences, and may justly be denounced, (noi as a levelling operation, but) as an exer cise of ai bin ut y power, wresting money and propel tv from those to whom it be longs, for the use of those to whom it does not belong. We oppose mis practice as one of injustice. We are in favor of col letting only as much money Irom the peo ple as may he necessary for public purpo ses, leaving ihe rest to be used by those to whom it belongs. e are not the ene mies of the banks, but we are not so much iheir friends ai to take money out ol the pockets of our constituents, and deposile it with them lo swell their aciive capital, and increase their profits. Let them be content, as every honest man ought to be, with using lhat which properly belongs to them. We look upon the withdrawal of the public deposites from the banks, as a mea sure beneficial to the banks themselves, and calculated lo promote stability in the business and currency of the country. So long as the public money are made the ba sis of bank issues, they will necessarily pro duce fluctuations in credit and currency. As the deposile accumulates, bank loans and bank notes increase in number and amount; as the deposite diminishes, bank accommodations aie curtailed, and ihe cir culation is retrtuched. Io reflecting man can doubt that the immense surplus in the Treasury two y ears ago, being all lent oui by the banks, was one cause of the over trading and speculation which ended in a general suspension of specie payments. Ought the banks to desire the continuance f a temptation which experience has shown they have not the firmness to resist? Ought the people to permit a return to, or i continuance of, a system which not only takes from them a portion of their proper ty for the use of the banks and their cus- pmers, but tends to render the rest unsta ble and insecure, by unsettling the standard f value, banishing the coin of ihecountrv rom circulation, and deluging the laud .villi an irredeemable, and, to a great ex vent, a fraudulent paper currency? T avoid ihese evils, we must remove their causes. One of the inot potent is ihe use of the public money lor pi ivate put poses. By polling a slop to that mix hit f, a.d ad ministering iheTreasury Department w hol ly independent of tije banks, ihe people of ihe United Slates will have much, through their Government, to fi.i the coun try with ihe precious metals, to secure a constitutional currency , to keep the public faith, to preserve ihe public morals, to give confidence to credit, and stability to trade, and above all, to preserve the rights of ihe States and the liberties of the Ameiican people. 'The subject of abolition has assumed a character so formidable in its appearance, and so desiruci.ive in its tendem. ie, as lo call for a b ief exposition of our views. The existing relation of master and slave between the two races inhabiting the Southern portion of ihe Union, existed when the ( 'onstiiuliou was formed, and is recognized in the apportionment of mem bers in ihe House of Representatives, ns well as in ihe imposition of direct taxes, Mid the clause guaranteeing ihe delivery up of persons held to service or labor in one State and escaping into another. It is manifest that the power over this subject is not of those not delegated lo the General Government, and, of course, is one of the reserved powers : as such, it is under Ihe entire control of the respective States, within whose limits Ihe institution may exist, and within which neither this Government, nor lhat of the other Slates, nor their citizens, have anyT more right to interfere, directly or indirectly, than with the existence of slavery in Cuba, or any other foreign country. From this it follows that any such inter ference on the part of this Government, would be without authority, and a manifest breach of the Constitution, It would, in truth, be more than a simple breach of that instrument; it would be destructive of the primary object for which the Government was instituted, which was to preserve and protect more effectually the domestic peace and tranquility of the Slates, and their citi zens. It also follows, that such interference on the part of other States, or their citizens, would be in violation of the national com pact, which they mutually pledged them selves to each other to preserve inviolate on entering into the Union. It also follows, that the States, separately and individually, where slavery exists, aie alone responsible for it. either for good or evil: and the impression thai any other State or its citizens are responsible, in any way, for its existence, originates in the gross and mischievous Federal concption that ours is a s;rear national consolidated Government, where the whole is responsi ble for the parts, just as tlie States arc for counties, instead of a Federal Republic, composed cf sovereign 3rd independent States, united together lor their mutual ad vantage, tranquility , and security. Such, and so formidable, arc the barriers ogiiinsl an interference with this dangerous subject, within, the limits of ihe States. ISor will ihese against an interference by the General Government, in any manner, in this District, he touud less formidable, when duly considered. We hold, in the first place, that, lo at tempt to abolish slavery in this District, as an intermediate step lo abolishing it in the States themselves, by this Go eminent, or the non-slaveholding States, or their citi zens, would be as clearly and manifestly lia ble to all the objections, in their full force, to which a direct attempt to abolish it in the States themselves would be. It is the mo tive and object intended, and not the means, that determine the character of the acl. There is no code of morals which justifies the doing of that indirectly which is for bidden to be done directly. If it be un lawful to burn our neighbor s house, it would be equally unlawful to fire another, or even our own, vvnn me unuuuuu ui burning his. If there be a difference, the latter, by adding craft to guilt, is of a deeper dye. We also hold that, whatever may be the individual opinions of public men as to the character of the domestic institutions of the slaveholding States, they have no right, when acting in public stations under the Federal Government, by any of their acts, to discriminate between their institutions and those of the other States. It must be borne in mind that ours is a Federal Repub lic, as has been already stated, formed by sovereign and independent States, for their mutual security and happiness; and that they instituted this Government, and cloth ed it with powers lo carry into effect these important objects. Such being the charac ter and object of our system, it isckarlhat this Government can have no right what ever to give a preference to the institutions of one portion of the Union over those of another, or to use it power to abolish one . t i- k .Unnthop- nnrt to do"so. be the pretext what it may, would be directly sub versive of the object for which it was e

North Carolina Newspapers is powered by Chronam.

Digital North Carolina