Other formats

    Adobe Portable Document Format file (facsimile images)   TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 41

The Arguments of Protectionists

The Arguments of Protectionists

6. It is argued by protectionists that a protective import duty is ultimately almost entirely paid by the foreign producer, and it is therefore supposed that protection secures the double advantage of compelling foreign countries to contribute to the home revenue, whilst at the same time encouragement is given to home industry.

This argument is supported with much ingenuity by a well-known American economist, Mr. Francis Bowen. It is contended by him that if America imported £40,000,000 worth of manufactured goods when an import duty of 10 per cent, was levied, and if when this duty was raised to 35 per cent, only £20,000,000 worth of good? were imported, the government would not only obtain a larger revenue from the smaller importation, but England in consequence of the falling off in the demand for her goods would be compelled to sell them at a lower price. It is therefore urged that the effect of a protective duty is to enable a country to purchase foreign produce at a cheaper rate, and consequently the country which maintains protection is placed in a position to make a better bargain with those from whom this produce is bought. In this reasoning the fact is altogether ignored that although the price which the English may obtain for their goods is somewhat less than it was before the duty was raised, yet this reduction in price is extremely trifling compared with the extent to which the price is raised in the importing country in consequence of the increase of duty; therefore those who purchase the article in America, although they may find its price not advanced by the full amount of the duty, yet the advance will be sufficient to cause by far the greater part of the duty to fall upon those who consume the article in America, and not upon those who produce it in England.

In order to show this, let it be assumed, following the example given by Mr. Bowen, that 100,000 pieces of woollen cloth, the value of which in England is £1,000,000, are exported from England to America when the import duty is 10 per cent. Suppose the cost of the carriage of this cloth is £1 a piece, and the duty being 10 per cent, will also be £1 per piece. Consequently the price at which the cloth will sell in America will be approximately £12 a piece because the price must be sufficient to provide a compensation for the cost of carriage and for the duty. If the price were more than sufficient to do this it would be more profitable to sell cloth in America than in England, and the price would be inevitably forced down by those who had cloth to sell being naturally anxious to secure the advantages of this extra profit. If, on the other hand, the difference in the price of cloth in the American and English markets were not sufficient to pay the cost of carriage and the duty, then it would be less profitable to sell English cloth in America than in England, and English manufacturers would consequently refuse to export cloth. When the duty is raised from 10 per cent, to 35 per cent., a piece of cloth which was worth £10 in England would have to be sold in America not at £12 but at £14 10s. because the difference between its price in the two markets must be sufficient to cover the duty as well as the cost of carriage; the cost of carriage is still £1, but the duty having been raised from 10 per cent, to 35 per cent, is £3 10s. The protectionists however are no doubt right in their contention that with this great increase in the price of English cloth in America, there would be a considerable falling off in the American demand. Accepting the hypothesis on which the argument advanced by Mr. Bowen is based, let it be assumed that the importation of English cloth into America is reduced from 100,000 to 50,000 pieces. This diminution in the demand for cloth would undoubtedly affect its price in England, but the reduction would inevitably be small when compared with the increase of duty. The price cannot permanently fall below such a point as will make the manufacture of cloth less remunerative than other branches of industry.

It would be an excessive estimate to suppose that a falling off to the extent of one-half in one branch of the foreign demand for English cloth, resulting from an increase of the American protective duties, would cause a reduction in price of 10 per cent. But even if it is assumed that the price is reduced by this amount, a piece of cloth which before was worth £10 in England would now be worth £9, and its price in the American market would be £13 3s. instead £14 10s.; because the difference in its price in the two markets must be sufficient to pay the cost of carriage, which is £1, and the duty, which is £3 3s., being 35 per cent, on the value of the cloth which is now £9. It therefore appears that although the price of English cloth in America is not advanced by the full amount of the increase of duty, yet the price is raised from £12 to £13 3s.; in fact cloth is made so dear that the American people can only afford to buy half as much from England as they formerly purchased. An injury will no doubt page 2 be inflicted on English trade by this falling off in the American demand; it must however be borne in mind that the loss which may be thus caused to a special branch of English industry may bring with it a compensating advantage. Thus it has been assumed that owing to less cloth being exported to America, cloth becomes cheaper in England by 10 per cent. Everyone therefore who wishes to purchase English cloth, whether at home or abroad, will be benefited by its being thus made cheaper. With this fall in price, the general demand will increase; this will inevitably lead to a considerable recovery in the price of cloth, and this circumstance will go far to compensate the English manufacturers for the falling off in the American demand.

It therefore appears that instead of a protective duty being chiefly paid, as American and other protectionists suppose, by foreign countries, such a duty must cause a much more serious loss to the community which imposes it than it causes to those countries who export the produce on which the duty is levied. Thus it has been shown in the foregoing example, that whatever loss might ultimately be caused to the English cloth manufacturers by an increase of the American import duties on cloth, this loss is, so far as the English people are concerned, accompanied by the advantage that they are able to purchase cloth at a somewhat lower price. One special branch of English trade is injured: whereas the general body of English consumers are benefited. In America, however, where the higher protective duty is imposed, exactly the reverse takes place. Whatever effect the increased duty may have upon the American cloth manufacturers, the increase of the duty causes a most serious loss to the American people.

The arguments that are adduced in favour of protection so habitually ignore the interests of the general consumer, that it is of the first importance to remember that in the case just investigated, the increase of the protective duty on cloth would not simply raise the price of imported cloth, but would produce a corresponding advance in the price of all the cloth which was purchased by the American people, whether of home or of foreign manufacture. If therefore, of the entire cloth used in America only one-twentieth were imported, the protective duty on cloth would impose a fine on the American people twenty times as large as the amount which the import duty yielded to the revenue. The injury therefore which is done to a foreign country by the imposition of a protective duty, is trifling compared with the injury which the country imposing the duty inflicts on herself.

7. A striking illustration is afforded of the opposite aspects under which the advantages of protection are represented by its advocates, when it is argued that the general body of consumers cannot be injured by protection, because profits and wages are not higher in the protected industries than in those which are not protected.

The employment of such an argument is imprudent, because the fallacy which it involves can be readily explained; whilst the admission it contains, as to the equality of wages and of profits in protected and unprotected industries, affords a complete refutation of many of the arguments on which most reliance is placed by those who support protection. Such an admission in fact disposes of a very considerable number of the reasons which are ordinarily urged in defence of protection. If it is conceded that profits and wages are not higher in trades which are protected than in those which are not protected, it at once becomes evident, as we have attempted to show in a previous chapter, that if commodities are made dearer by protection, the loss which is thus caused to the consumer of these commodities is not counterbalanced by any special advantage being enjoyed by those who supply the capital and labor requisite to produce them. When the price of any product is increased through protection, the extra price does not represent higher profits or wages, but is simply an equivalent for increased cost of production.

In order to prove the fallacy involved in the argument that the consumer cannot be injured by protection because the imposition of a protective duty, in any branch of industry, does not increase its wages and profits beyond the average rate, it is only necessary to consider what would be the effect of again levying in England an import duty on corn. As previously explained, the inevitable effect of such a duty would be to raise the price of corn in England. Less foreign corn would be imported, and more would be grown on our own soil. This rise however in the price of corn, as is admitted by the protectionists in the argument we are now considering, would not increase the profits of the farmer; the extra price which he received for his corn having to be devoted to pay the additional rent which now would be demanded from him, he would pain nothing; but the fact that he is not benefited, would not in the slightest degree lessen the loss which would be inflicted on the general body of the consumers; for, in consequence of the protective duty, everyone would find that he had to pay more for the bread he purchased.

8. It is alleged that protection must be economically advantageous, because when a country produces commodities for itself, instead of obtaining them from abroad, the labor employed in transporting them is saved, and this labor is assumed to be unproductive.

There is, however, not the slightest foundation for the assumption that the labor employed in transporting a commodity is in any degree more unproductive than the labor which is employed in producing it. The labor of the ploughman who ploughs the land on which wheat is grown, is not more useful or essential than is the labor of those who bring the wheat to the place where it is required for consumption. The finest fields of wheat would be perfectly worthless if the wheat had to be left on the fields where it grew. There may be millions of tons of coal at the pit's mouth, and this coal would be of no more use than if it had never been dug, unless there is labor to convey it to the places where it is wanted.

It is supposed that a coal-field extends under the entire town of Liverpool. If this is the case, it would be possible for the people of Liverpool to obtain coal close to their own doors. This coal, however, being at a much greater depth than the coal in other coal-fields in the locality, would be more expensive to work. Let it be assumed that the additional cost of working the coal will be 5s. a ton, and that the cost of carrying coal from the coal fields which now supply Liverpool is 2s. a ton. It is obvious that page 3 this cost of carriage would be saved, if the coal immediately below Liverpool were worked. But in order to save this 2s., 5s. would have to be spent; and therefore the net loss on each ton of coal used in Liverpool would be 3s.

It therefore appears that saving the labor employed in transporting produce is not necessarily economically advantageous, for the amount thus saved may be altogether inadequate to the increased cost involved in obtaining a commodity under more unfavorable conditions.

9. Protection has been represented to the working classes in America as conferring a great benefit upon them, because it is said that wages are higher in the protected industries in America than they are in the same industries in free-trade England.

Even if the difference in the remuneration of labor in the United States and in England had continued to be as great as it was formerly, it is obvious, after what was stated when considering the seventh argument, that this difference in wages could not have been due to protection. It was shown that protectionists themselves admit that wages are not higher in protected than in unprotected industries; consequently the greater remuneration which labor obtains in one country than in the other must be due to causes which are independent of protection, and which exert a similar influence upon all employments. A consideration of some of the more prominent features in the economic condition of England and America respectively will at once enable us not only to say what these causes are, but will also show that far from protection increasing the remuneration of labor in the United States, it is gradually depriving labor of so much of its productiveness, that it seems probable wages will soon be reduced there to the same level which they have reached in England.

The most striking point of difference in the economic position of England and the United States, is the comparatively small quantity of fertile land which is possessed by the former country in proportion to its population. The quantity of food which is grown upon English soil would be altogether inadequate for the support of its population; and each year we are becoming more and more dependent upon America to make good this deficiency in our supplies of food. It is calculated that the quantity of wheat annually consumed in England is about 22,000,000 quarters; the yield of our own harvest this year is estimated at 9,000,000 quarters. 13,000,000 quarters will consequently have to be imported, and by far the larger portion of this will be obtained from America. The quantity of meat, butter, cheese and other articles of food which are annually imported from America is rapidly increasing. It is not, however, only with regard to food that England has so largely to depend upon foreign countries for the supplies she requires. A great part of the raw material which is used in many of her most important manufacturing industries is not obtained from her own soil. For instance, a very large portion of the wool which is annually manufactured in England is of foreign growth; and the English climate not being suited to to the production of silk and cotton, all the raw silk and raw cotton which she requires must necessarily be imported. So large a portion of this cotton is obtained from the United States, that the value of the raw cotton which is imported thence has in some years amounted to £30,000,000. It therefore appears that the United States, when compared with England, enjoys the great advantage of possessing a more abundant and cheaper supply, not only of food, but also of the products which provide the raw material of the most important branches of manufacturing industry. It would seem necessarily to follow that wages and profits would be much higher in the United States than in England. Fertile land is so plentiful in the former country, that it can be obtained in any quantity for the payment of almost a nominal sum; whereas those in England who wish to cultivate land often have to pay in a single year, in rent, as much as would represent the fee-simple of land of the same quality in the United States. In the one country the entire produce of the land may be devoted to remunerate capital and labor; whereas in the other country a not inconsiderable portion of the produce has to be appropriated as rent. The amount which an English farmer has to pay in rent is often equivalent to the entire amount which he expends in wages. Consequently there will be a smaller aggregate sum left to be divided in the form of profits and wages amongst those who have supplied the capital and labour requisite for the cultivation of the laud. It therefore appears that a higher rate of profits and wages must be yielded by agriculture in the United States than in England, and as it has been proved that wages and profits in different industries in the same country approximate to equality, it follows that capital and labour ought both to obtain a higher remuneration in the United States than in England. This higher remuneration is due to circumstances which are altogether independent of protection. It can, moreover, be shown that an influence of so exactly an opposite kind is exerted by protection, that at the present time it is imposing on the industrial classes in America a burden, which to a great extent is neutralising the advantages conferred upon them by the possession of those great natural resources to which attention has just been directed.

A change of the utmost significance has recently taken place in the economic relations between England and the United States. For many years a large stream of emigration continuously flowed from Great Britain and Ireland to America. Those who left were so well satisfied with their new home that between 1847 and 1864, the Irish emigrants alone transmitted £10,000,000 from America, to enable their friends and relations in the old country to go and share the prosperity and comfort which they were then enjoying. It has, however, now come to pass that labourers now seem as desirous to leave, as they once were to reach the United States. The fade of emigration, once so strong, is now beginning to turn, for in 1877 the number of those who emigrated from England to the United States only exceeded by 603 the number of those who emigrated from the United States to England.

It may of course be said that labourers have been induced to leave the United States in consequence of great depression in trade, but if trade is more depressed there than in England, the fact still remains that labourers are leaving the United States because the labour market of that country ceases to offer the advantages it once possessed. It therefore appears that American protectionists can no longer use the argument which was once employed with so much effect, that protection secures to labour the advantage of a higher remuneration than can be obtained in countries which have adopted free trade.

page 4

After what has been stated in a previous chapter, the prejudicial effect which must be exercised upon the remuneration of labour by such a protectionist tariff as that which is now maintained in the United States will be readily understood. A protective duty by making the product on which it is imposed unnecessarily dear, virtually levies a tax from all those who purchase it. When the commodities which are subjected to such a duty are those in general use, the effect of the duty is precisely the same as if an income tax were levied from the entire community. Such a tax cannot be adjusted or equalized as is the case with the income tax in our own country. Small incomes cannot be exempted; for however poor a man may be, the tax will fall with unerring certainty on all that portion of his income, or his wages, which is expended in the purchase of those articles which are protected. But this is not the only tax which protection compels a community to pay. When the instruments and the plant of industry are made more costly, the products of that industry necessarily become more expensive. Iron, copper, and timber are, as we have seen, all made dearer in the United States by protection. Consequently the machinery which is made of copper and iron becomes more expensive; the cost of buildings also, in the construction of which iron and timber are used, is increased; and this being the case, those who pay a higher price for this machinery must be compensated by obtaining a higher price for the products which they manufacture; and those who erect the buildings will be able to claim an increased rent, in order that they may be adequately remunerated for the additional cost of their construction.

Protection is thus in a thousand different ways perpetually taxing the American people. There is not one single branch of her industry on which it does not impose a penalty more or less severe. Its influence may be traced far and wide over the country. It increases the cost of the implements by which the land in the far west is tilled; it causes a higher rent to be paid by the poorest artizan, lodged in a back street of New York. The burden thus cast upon the industrial classes is so severe as to gradually neutralise her great natural advantages; and thus we find that though trade is depressed in England, it is still more depressed in America, and workmen are beginning to discover, that although wages are nominally higher in the United States than they are in England, yet the American labourer has to pay so much more for house-rent, and many articles which he must purchase are made so unnecessarily dear, that with higher wages he is not so well off as he would be with smaller wages in England.

10. When protection has once been introduced into a country, it is argued that it should embrace as many industries as possible; because if only one industry were protected, the general public would receive no compensation for the higher price which they would have to pay for the product of this particular industry. If however, protection embraces the entire industry of the country, each industrial class is in its turn benefited, and is amply compensated for the increased dearness of various articles.

This argument has been enforced with much ingenuity by M. Alby, a well-known French protectionist. He contends that if the iron interest alone were protected in France, the policy would be absolutely indifensible, because every one in France would have to pay more for iron in order to give an advantage to those engaged in the French iron trade; but he urges that this objection is entirely removed if all industries are equally protected. For instance, if the cloth trade is protected, the benefit which those engaged in it are supposed to derive, more than compensates them for the loss they have to bear in paying an increased price for iron. It has been shown with great clearness by the late Professor Cairr.es, that it is impossible to extend protection to all industries in the manner here contemplated; and even if such an extension were practicable, the compensation which it is assumed the community would receive, would be entirely illusory. It is obvious, in the first place, that this argument entirely overlooks the interests of the professional and other classes who obtain their incomes otherwise than by trade. A physician with £1,000 a year, or a policeman with £1 a week, would find that almost everything he purchased was made dearer by protection; while his income was in no way increased by it.

With regard to the impracticability of extending protection to all industries, it is only necessary to remark that in many industries there is no foreign competition, and it is consequently impossible to extend protection to them. For example, wine is not imported into France, and wheat is not imported into America. An import duty imposed upon wine in France, or on wheat in America, would therefore be of no advantage to the French wine-grower, or to the American farmer. They are consequently precluded from receiving any compensation for the higher price which they are compelled to pay for the various articles that are made dearer through the operation of protective duties. But even if it were praticable to extend protection to the entire trade of the country, it can be readily shown that nothing would be gained even by those who where interested either as employers or employed in the various industries thus protected, as a set-off against the very serious loss which would be caused to the whole community. The only way in which the general rate of wages and profits prevailing in a country can be advanced, is to increase the productiveness of capital and labour If more is produced by the expenditure of a given amount of capital and labour, there will be more to distribute in profits and wages. If less is produced there will be less to distribute, and profits and wages will be reduced. Whatever may be the social and political advantages claimed for protection, such for instance, as that it secures a diversified industry, and makes a community independent of foreign countries, its advocates do not attempt to maintain that it increases the productiveness of capital and labour. They are in fact forced to admit, that if protection were regarded simply in its economic aspects it could not be defended; but they maintain that the social and political advantages which they suppose result from it, are more than sufficient to counterbalance the economic loss which is caused to a country by diverting a portion of its labour and capital to industries which can be carried on under less favourable conditions at home than abroad.

11. Protection is defended in America and the Colonies on the ground that, as wages are higher there than in England, the American and Colonial traders require protection in order to place them in a position of equality with their English competitors.

page 5

This claim for protection is evidently based on the assumption, that the amount of wages paid to labourers is the only element of which account need be taken when considering the cost of producing a particular article. The faliacy of such an opinion at once becomes apparent, when it is remembered that agriculture is the particular branch of industry in which the difference between the wages paid in England and those paid in America or Australia is the greatest. And yet it is in agriculture that America and Australia can without the slightest protection compete most successfully against England. The Illinois or Australian farmer has to pay his labourers at least three or four times as much as is paid by the Dorsetshire or Wiltshire farmer, and yet wheat can be produced much more cheaply in Australia or America than in England. It is therefore obvious that other circumstances, besides the amount of wages which may be paid, determine the cost at which any article can be produced; if this were not so, the American farmer would have a much stronger claim to protection against the cheap labour of England than the American manufacturer. The efficiency of labour must manifestly exert quite as much influence on the cost of production as the amount of wages which the labourers receive. The great abundance of cheap fertile land in Australia and America, so much promotes the efficiency or productiveness of the labour employed in its cultivation, that the cost of producing wheat and other agricultural products is much less than in England, where considerably lower wages are paid to farm labourers. Again, with regard to mining industry, it is evident that various circumstances, such for instance as the richness of the mineral deposits and their depth from the surface, must exercise a greater effect upon the cost of production than the wages which may happen to be paid to the miners. In manufacturing industry also, the possibility of one country obtaining raw material at a less cost than another, may more than compensate the additional expense which may be thrown upon the manufacturers of the former country by the payment of higher wages. With regard to America and Australia, it is to be particularly noted that the great natural resources which they possess must confer upon them many advantages in industrial competition of which there is no probability that they can be deprived. Their almost inexhaustible supplies of fertile laud give them advantages such as are possessed by scarcely any other country. Their mineral resources are so great, that if they suffer from foreign competition it must be through their own want of skill and enterprise. Even in manufacturing industry, where it is supposed that protection is most needed, it must be remembered that, as England imports large quantities of cotton from America, and of wool from Australia, these countries must with regard to some most important branches of manufacturing industry enjoy the advantage of cheaper raw material. It is moreover deserving of special remark, that the difference in wages in countries between which there is an extensive migration of labour must constantly diminish. When emigration has continued for some time, the objections to it are sure gradually to lessen; it becomes much more of a national habit, and the prospect of a comparatively small advance of wages may be sufficient to induce people to leave their own country, if they think they shall be settling amongst friends and relations, which would prove altogether inadequate if they had to seek a new home amongst strangers. This increasing readiness to emigrate must exert an equalising influencc on wages, and must cause the difference in wages in the two countries, between which the emigration takes place, steadily to diminish. So much is this the case with the United States, that, as previously pointed out, it is now considered that the remuneration received for various kinds of labour is higher in England than in the United States; and there is at the present time nearly as much emigration from America to England as there is from England to America. When the remuneration of labour has ceased to be higher in America than in England; when skilled workmen, such as masons, are found willing to come from New York to work in London for wages which are refused by English masons, there cannot be a shadow of pretext for demanding protection on the ground that the American employer has to pay a higher price for labour than his English competitor. If with labour as cheap as it is in England; if with the unequalled natural resources, inexhaustible supplies of coal, iron, and every other mineral, boundless tracts of fertile land, unsurpassed facilities for internal navigation; if with these and countless other advantages, the American manufacturer is unable to contend with his foreign competitors, it must be because he and those he employs are deficient in skill and energy, and are wasteful of the great gifts with which their country has been endowed.

12. Another argument against free trade is that protection having been once established cannot be abolished without causing great loss both to employers and employed in those trades which have been protected.

It cannot, I think, be doubted that the loss which might be inflicted upon many special trade interests by the abolition of protection constitutes by far the most serious obstacle in the way of the general adoption of free trade. Exaggerated estimates are no doubt formed of the loss which would be actually caused; but however great may be the stimulus which free trade would give to the prosperity of such a country as the United States, it would in my opinion be impossible suddenly to abolish protection without causing considerable loss to the employers and employed in many trades which, through its aid, had been fostered into a kind of unnatural existence. No industrial change, however beneficial, has ever been introduced without causine some loss and inconvenience to certain special classes. The mechanical inventions, which have done most to enrich mankind, were not brought into general use without causing great loss and suffering to many whose labour they supplanted. Seldom has a class endured more severe hardships than were borne by our handloom weavers, during the years that they carried on a prolonged and hopeless struggle, striving in vain to compete with products which were made by machinery at a far cheaper rate. Even stage-coaches could not be superseded by railways without some individuals being injured by the change. Although the aggregate wealth of the country was enormously increased, yet in certain special cases property which was before of great value became almost worthless.

To be concluded.

page 6

"The gardener and his wife," Mr. Tennyson tells us, "laugh at the claims of long descent." If it be so, the laugh is natural, for our first parents were "novi homines," and could not appreciate what they did not possess. Nevertheless, in all nations which have achieved any kind of eminence, particular families have stood out conspicuously for generation after generation as representatives of political principles, as soldiers or statesmen, as ruling in their immediate neighbourhoods with delegated authority, and receiving homage voluntarily offered. They have furnished the finer tissues in the corporate body of the national life, and have given to society its unity and coherence. In times of war they have fallen freely on the battle-field. In times of discord and civil strife their most illustrious members have been the first to bleed on the scaffold. An English family, it has been said, takes rank according to the number of its members which have been hanged. With men, as with animals and plants, peculiar properties are propagated by breeding. Each child who has inherited a noble name feels a special call to do no dishonour to it by unworthy actions. The family falls in pieecs when its characteristics disappear. But, be the cause what it may, there is no instance, ancient or modern, of any long protracted national existence where an order of aristocracy and gentry are not to be found preserving their identity, their influence, and their privileges of birth through century after century. They have no monopoly of genius. A gifted man rises out of the people, receiving his patent of nobility, as Burns said, "direct from Almighty God." He makes a name and a position for himself; but when the name is made, he hands it on with distinction printed upon it, to his children and his children's children. More is expected from the sons of eminent parents than from other men, and if the transmitted quality is genuine more comes out of them. It is not talent. Talent is but partially hereditary, if at all. The virtue that runs in the blood is superiority of courage or character; and courage and character, far more than cleverness, are the conditions indispensable for national leaders. Thus without exception, in all great peoples, hereditary aristocracies have formed themselves, and when aristocracies have decayed or disappeared the State has degenerated along with them. The fall of a nobility may be a cause of degeneracy, or it may only be a symptom; but the phenomenon itself is a plain matter of fact, true hitherto under all forms of political constitution, monarchic, oligarchic, or republican. Republics have held together as long as they have been strung with patrician sinews; when the sinews crack the republic becomes a democracy, and the unity of the commonwealth is shivered into a heap of disconnected atoms, each following its own laws of gravitation towards its imagined interests. Athens and Rome, the Italian Republics, the great kingdoms which rose out of the wreck of the Roman Empire, tell the same story. The modern Spaniard reads the records of the old greatness of his country on the tombs of the Castilian nobles, and in the ruins of their palaces. They and the glory of the Spanish race have departed together. The Alvas and the Olivarez's, the Da Leyvas and Mendozas, may have deserved their fall, but when they fell, and no others had arisen in their places, the nation fell. Hitherto, no nation has been able to sustain itself in a front place without an aristocracy of some kind maintained as the hereditary principle. So far the answer of history is uniform. The United States may inaugurate a new experience. With the one exception of the Adams's, the great men who have shown as yet in American history have left no representatives to stand at present in the front political ranks. There are no Washingtons, no Franklins, no Jeffersons, no Clays, or Randolphs now governing States or leading debates in Congress. How long this will continue, how long the determination that all men shall start equal in the race of life will prevail against the instinctive tendencies of successful men to perpetuate their names, is the most interesting of political problems. The American nationality is as yet too young for conclusions to be built on what it has done hitherto, or has forborne to do. We shall know better two centuries hence whether equality and the ballot-box provide better leaders for a people than the old method of birth and training. France was cut in pieces in the Revolution of 1793, and flung into the Medean cauldron, expecting to merge again with fresh vitality. The rash experiment has not succeeded up to this time, and here too we must wait for what her future will bring forth. So far, the nations which have democratized themselves have been successful in producing indefinite quantities of money. If money and money-making will secure their stability, they may look forward hopefully—not otherwise.—Froude.