More on Congress and Parliament of the 1700’s

Posted By on June 1, 2012

If you can read all of this post without getting angry, infuriated, nauseated and motivated to see a revolution this year in the ballot box, then you have no passion or love for this country.

This evening I was out eating, and I must say I will never go back to that establishment again. Now, I’ve had worse food before at a restaurant, but rarely was bad food accompanied by reading a commentary which provoked so much negative emotions and physical reactions. The first moment of physical displeasure came while eating a warm side salad, but then I had to ask myself, “is it the salad or the utter obviousness of the comparison with modern American government I am reading?” Next, came the fried flounder filet floating in its own bath of cooking oil, “please, David, don’t turn it over and have to see the grease, then maybe your can eat this,” but no it was the side dish of disgusting revelations of the more similarities between the British government of the 1700’s and the US Federal government of the last half of the 20th Century and up to today which provided added nausea of the moment. Finally, the flounder was done, the passable hush puppies consumed and I could concentrate on the best tasting part of the meal, the french fries while trying to continue reading Tucker. But alas, I soon tired of the fries and could no longer endure the dreadful revelations.

In February, 2010 launched to provide a platform for me to present the information and lessons I had learned and am learning from the pages of American History. If someone had told me then that the two most popular posts on this website would be ones where I exposed the truth of the British Parliament and government of the 1700’s and compared them to the American government of today, I might have thought you were crazy. But, it’s true, the most frequently viewed post of the past two years is “Congress & Parliament of the 1700’s” visited nearly 1.5 times more than the second most popular, “The English Government of the 1700’s.” When you combine the visits to these two sites there have been 941, the next closest post only has 155 visits. Shocking!

More than the shock of the last paragraph, comes the shocking revelations of this evening. In the past two articles I compared the Parliament’s disregard of the petitions of the British citizens living in the American colonies. Next, we examined the examined the comparisons of how the excesses are so similar, but nothing compares with what I read tonight. If the language wasn’t so obviously two hundred years old, the sentence and paragraph structures so foreign to the modern American English speaker; and if, just IF it were written in modern English, you would think it would be speaking directly about the modern American government, Congress, Judicial system the despicable occupants of the White House of the past 80 to 90 years with rare exceptions. Yes, I believe Reagan to be one of those exceptions, but even he acted and governed in ways which violated the Constitution.

The following comes again from Tucker’s Blackstone’s Note B to Volume 1. tucker is quoting James Mackintosh’s “Defence of the French Revolution” written in 1791. According to Tucker, Mackintosh was a a native pen “…whose stile and manner evince a superiority both of genius and discernment, whilst they leave no doubt upon the mind, that he had seen and felt all that he describes, may lead us to conclude, that the practical abuses, corruptions, and oppressions of that government…” (Tucker, Note B, 1803)

So, now to the first hand, eyewitness to the British government as written in 1791 by Macintosh and quoted by Tucker:

It is perhaps susceptible of proof… that these governments of balance and control have never existed but in the visions of theorists. The fairest example will be the constitution of England. If it can be proved that the two members of the legislature who pretend to control each other are ruled by the same class of men, the control must be granted to be imaginary. That opposition of interest which is supposed to preclude all conspiracy against the people can no longer exist. That this is the state of England, the most superficial observation must evince. The great proprietors, tided and untitled, possess the whole force of both houses of parliament, that is not immediately dependent on the crown. The peers have a great influence in the house of commons. All political parties are formed by a confederacy of the members of both houses. The court party by the influence of the crown, acting equally in both, supported by a part of the independent aristocracy: The opposition by the remainder of the aristocracy, whether commoners, or lords. Here is every symptom of collusion: no vestige of control. The only case where it could arise, is where the interest of the peerage, is distinct from that of the other great proprietors. (Tucker, Note B, 1803) Emphases added.

Oh, but wait, there’s even more shocking observations of the English government which are snapshots from history, portending 20th and 21st Century American politics:

Who can, without indignation hear the house of commons of England called a popular representative? A more insolent and preposterous abuse of language is not to be found in the vocabulary of tyrants. The criterion that distinguishes laws from dictates, freedom from servitude, rightful government from usurpation, the law being an expression of the general will is wanting. This is the grievance which the admirers of the revolution in 1688, desire to remedy according to its principles. This is that perennial source of corruption, which has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished. If the general interest is not the object of the government, it is, it must be, because the general will does not govern. We are boldly challenged to produce our proofs: our complaints are asserted to be chimerical, and the excellence of our government is inferred from its beneficial effects. Most unfortunately for us, most unfortunately for our country, these proofs are too ready, and too numerous. We find them in that monumental debt, the bequest of wasteful, and profligate wars, which wrings from the peasant something of his hard-earned pittance; which already has punished the industry of the useful and upright manufacturer, by robbing him of the asylum of his house, and the judgment of his peers: to which the madness of political quixotism** adds a million for every farthing that the pomp of ministerial empyricism pays; and which menaces our children with convulsions and calamities, of which no age has seen the parallel. We find them in the bloody roll of persecuting statutes that are still suffered to stain our code; a list so execrable, that were there no monument to be preserved of what England was in the eighteenth century, but her statute-book, she might be deemed still plunged in the deepest gloom of superstitious barbarism. We find them in the ignominious exclusion of great bodies of our fellow citizens from political trusts, by tests which reward falsehood, and punish probity; which profane the rites of the religion they pretend to guard, and usurp the dominion of the God, they profess to revere. We find them in the growing corruptions of those who administer the government, in the venality of a house of commons which has become only a cumbrous and expensive chamber for registering ministerial edicts …. in the increase of a nobility arrived to a degradation, by the profusion and prostitution of honours, which the most zealous partizans of democracy would have spared them. We find them, above all, in the rapid progress which has been made to silence the great organ of public opinion, the Press, which is the true control on ministers and parliaments, who might else, with impunity, trample on the impotent formalities, that form the pretended bulwark of our freedom …. The mutual control, the well-poised balance of the several members of our legislature, are the visions of theoretical, or the pretexts of practical politicians. It is a government not of check, but of conspiracy …. a conspiracy which can only be repressed by the energy of popular opinion.  (Tucker, Note B, 1803) Emphases added.

quixotism (a quixotic person) quixotic 1: foolishly impractical especially in the pursuit of ideals; especially : marked by rash lofty romantic ideas or extravagantly chivalrous action
2: capricious, unpredictable (quixotic, Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary, from, retrieved 5/31/2012.)

And, oh, yes, there is more! Two more paragraphs more!

If this be a true picture of the government of Great Britain (and whether it is or not, I shall leave it to others to enquire and determine,) the epoch can not be far distant, which Judge Blackstone hints at in the introduction to his commentaries. “If ever it should happen” says that enlightened author “that the independence of any one of the three branches of the legislature should be lost, or that it should become subservient to the views of either of the other two, there would soon be an end of the constitution.” In which case, according to Sir Matthew Hale, the subjects of that kingdom are left without all manner of remedy.

Such, then, being the history of the British constitution, the most perfect model of these mixt governments, (as agreed on all hands by their admirers, and advocates,) that the world ever saw, we may apply to them generally, the observations of an excellent politician[35] of the last century. “If all the parts of the state do not with their utmost power promote the public good; if the prince has other aims than the safety and welfare of his country; if such as represent the people do not preserve their courage and integrity; if the nation’s treasure is wasted; if ministers are allowed to undermine the constitution with impunity; if judges are suffered to pervert justice, and wrest the law; then is a mixed government the greatest tyranny in the world: it is tyranny established by law; and the people are bound in fetters of their own making. A tyranny that governs by the sword, has few friends but men of the sword; but a legal tyranny (where the people are only called to confirm iniquity with their own voices) has on its side the rich, the timid, the lazy, those that know law, and get by it, ambitious churchmen, and all whose livelihood depends upon the quiet posture of affairs: and the persons here described compose the influencing part of most nations; so that such a tyranny is hardly to be shaken off. (Tucker, Note B, 1803) Bold and underlined emphases added.

I don’t think I can add anymore. Is it really as obvious to you as it was to me? To me it is absolutely scarily apparent! Please post your comments and tell me I’m either wrong or missing something, and if I am tell me where.

Related Article Links:

Congress & Parliament of the 1700’s
The English Government of the 1700’s
More on Congress and Parliament of the 1700’s
Commentary on British Government from 1803

About the author


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

%d bloggers like this: