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may already be regarded as well settled, in political economy,—that in proportion as individuals, as well as society, improve in moral excellence, in the same ratio, pride, war, vain-glory, luxury, prodigality, and useless consumption of wealth,-are diminished; and a virtuous and prosperous political economy is increased; thereby leaving a greater amount of productions for market, and additional means for their purchase; according to the continual increase of inhabitants to be supported. It is a lamentable fact in the moral history of our race, that the most squalid, intemperate beggar, who rolls daily in the ditches and sinks of vice, is the most expensive and prodigal consumer in community. And if we balance the columns of life's ledger, we find to our great surprise, that this miserable victim of vice, during a life of three score years and ten, has consumed, including a fair compensation for his worse than wasted time, and the principal and interest of funds actually expendedthe sum of fifty thousand dollars,—an ample fortune for any man. But the worst feature in the history of vice is, that the property thus expended is actually consumed and destroyed, as effectually as if devoured by fire; so that no one is benefited, but many are injured, and the miserable, intemperate, vicious pauper is ruined.
This social law, of course, must gradually lead to migration from the American Republic to every part of the earth, for room and sustenance; who will carry with them their American blood, their language, their republican government, their evangelical religion, their arts, sciences, literature, and American institutions; and in the course of two centuries, a period of about one-sixth of the national existence of Rome,-Asia, Africa, Europe, America, and Oceanica will become the homes
of our children and their descendants.
History is quite uniform in its testimony, that nearly all social, physical, intellectual, moral, political, and religious improvements, spring from the reciprocal influence of a dense population; and from the general diffusion of useful knowledge; and commerce, wealth, power, science, and learning, all follow in the train of emigration, and a dense population.
Who then can calculate the state of society two centuries hence, when the English language will be, probably, spoken and written throughout the world? When all Asia, Africa, Europe, America, and Oceanica, will be bound together by the bands of seas, lakes, rivers, canals, railroads, telegraphs, and the more powerful ligaments of commerce, interest, liberty, and moral principle! When the mountains of all nations will be terraced with agriculture, cottages, and villas! When the deserts and morasses will be converted into fertile fields and meadows! When the temples of freedom, science, and religion, shall pierce the heavens with their glittering spires, in every section and town of the habitable earth.
Should any one suspect these statements to be mere drafts on the imagination, he may readily quiet his fears, by examining the history of the American Union, during the first half of the nineteenth century. Let him pause and consider well the gigantic success of this young Republic, in numbers, wealth and learning; as well as in social, political, and moral improvements. Let him examine his arithmetic, which requires all its powers in estimating the unparalleled prosperity of this model nation of the world,—and then say what earthly power can stop its progress, short of the full enjoyment of all these future realities.
It has long been considered a well settled principle in political science, that the increase of population is always in proportion to the physical, political, literary, social, and religious prosperity of the people. And if we apply this rule to the United States, as doubtless we may, it shows the American Republic in advance of all other nations in civilization and national glory.
The American Union has now enjoyed a national existence of eightyfive years, since 1776. During all this time, the nation has never been involved in foreign war, except in a few cases of necessary self-defense; nor has the country ever been distracted by civil war among its own citizens,— except the present servile rebellion of a few slaveholders, which will readily be put down. This cannot be said of any other nation, ancient or modern, in any part of the globe, during the first eighty-five years of national life. And so long as America continues her policy of strict neutrality, and international justice, this element of stability will insure the future success of the national Union. The ravages of war have destroyed more than eight-tenths of all the nations, which have fallen since the origin of human society. It has been calculated by the learned, that the expenses of all the wars recorded in history,—including principal and interest,--if equally divided among the present inhabitants of the earth,allowing them to number one thousand million, would give each person a dividend of more than one hundred thousand dollars. And if we add to this the property destroyed, and other losses, to say nothing of the many million of valuable lives lost, it would give a dividend of more than one thousand dollars to every human being on earth. And yet the three defens
ive wars,—the revolution, the last war with Great Britain, and the Mexican war, together with the Indian conflicts in which America has been necessarily involved in self-defense, form but a very small fractional part of this
With a navy which has successfully tried titles with the mistress of the seas; with an educated, citizen soldiery, of more than five million,every one a swordsman, a fatal shot, or an able general; with military schools, which annually educate, at the public expense, hundreds of men, of the first order of talent; many of whom are capable of leading an army to victory, against a Napoleon, a Wellington, or a Washington; together with ample munitions of war,-in a Republican government, where every citizen is freely intrusted with arms, both in war and in peace,-there is nothing to fear from foreign invasion, or internal rebellion.
The decentralization and equal diffusion of the government through every part of the nation, is another invaluable element of national durability. The centralization of government within the walls of the capital, has ever been one of the most fatal rocks on which nations have been wrecked. It ruined Nineveh, Babylon, Egypt, Greece, Rome, and Poland; and has frequently dethroned and beheaded the sovereigns of England and France. The old, but false motto of the "Eternal City,"-" That all the world was Rome, and Rome was all the world," has ever been the ruling principle of tyrants. The centralization of all national power, and national institutions, at the court and capital of the nation, is the crushing evil of monarchical governments. Such a policy leaves the remote parts of the country without protection, without improve
ment, and without representation; and, of course, the citizens soon lose all attachment to a government, which treats them with such cold neglect. England learned this lesson under the tyranny of James the Second; and wisely reformed. France has opened her eyes to its fatal consequences a few years since; and the tyrants of Europe are now preparing to discuss the question with the people, sword in hand, with the arguments of canThe American Fathers foresaw this national evil; and, wisely rejecting this aristocratic policy, from the beginning, pursued a system of decentralization, by equally diffusing the blessings of government through every vein and artery of the body-politic; freely flowing and circulating from the heart of the nation, at the capital of the country, to every extremity of the whole system. Government power is so generally and equally divided among the numerous public officers, that every citizen partakes equally of its protection and benefits; however near or distant from the public capital. And so equally, justly, and democratically, are the blessings of government distributed through every part of the country, that no citizen, however great or humble, is dwarfed by distance, or magnified by nearness; while the government is sufficiently central to act as the mainspring, in moving the whole national machinery.
grants no monopolies or hereditary offices; but gives every citizen an equal dividend in the benefits of government; and allows all freely to enjoy the rights of property. The consequence of this system is, that the whole nation constitutes a kind of partnership or firm; in which every one invests his capital or labor; and draws his dividend, sharing in profit and loss. The capitalists of Wall street, of Chesnut street, and of the country generally, invest their funds in factories, lands, commerce, produce, mines, canals, railroads, shipping, and stocks, in every section of the Union; while the inhabitants perform the labor, cultivate the soil, work the factories, and dig the mines; and thus render the union of capital and labor equally productive to all parties. These interests are all linked together by the railroads, canals, rivers, oceans, lakes, and public highways of the country; constructed and navigated, not exclusively by the government, as in the eastern continent,-but by the labor and funds of the people; who are bound together by the indissoluble ties of individual and common interest.
One of the strongest ligaments of national stability, is wealth, founded on the equal right of freely acquiring and enjoying property. Wherever this principle is equally diffused among the people, there all have a common interest to be protected from ruinous innovations; and crushing disunion. The political economy of America differs from all other nations. It creates no overgrown or aristocratic fortunes;
Although but few large fortunes, like Astor, Girard, and others, are acquired in America; yet all have, or can have competent livings; and in many instances secure ample fortunes. So intimate and sensitive are these commercial ligaments and pecuniary ties, that the failure of a State to pay interest,the loss of a vessel, or the bankruptcy of an individual, is felt hundreds and thousands of miles distant, in various sections of the nation. Thus the benefits of the Union yield a daily pecuniary dividend to every citizen; which could not be realized without it. To this portrait of American wealth, it is only necessary to add the inexhaustible riches of the public lands and
their doors to a laudable ambition and useful competition; where all have an equal share of success. Every American mother rocks her infant babe, with equal hopes of his becoming a future president of the United States, a general in the army, a commodore in the navy, a man of wealth, a distinguished statesman, a profound jurist, a skillful physician, an eminent scholar, or a Doctor of Divinity.
mines; with an annual revenue of fifty million of dollars,--more than sufficient to meet all the expenses of government, in time of peace; without taxing the people, or incurring a national debt. That a nation of thirty million of inhabitants, occupying a territory of three thousand millions of acres,-sustaining a commerce not surpassed by any country, and equaled but by few,-should be carried on harmoniously and successfully; with an average annual expenditure of less than one hundred millions of dollars, --less than the annual cost of the British Government in the support of the Royal Family,-is a political wonder in the history of nations.
No country equals America in its facilities for the acquisition of wealth. Every youth, both male and female, by industry, virtue, and economy, can acquire an ample fortune, a liberal education, or both. In this extensive country, embracing so many states and territories, with an annual inland commerce of more than one thousand million of dollars,-more than twice the amount of the foreign commerce of the nation,--every American youth, by various branches of industry, can save from his earnings, annually, besides his necessary expenses, from one to three hundred dollars a year; an income which, with its annual profits and interest, in the course of a life of ordinary longevity, is an ample fortune of itself for any man. This can be done by agriculture, mechanical labor, mining, commerce, merchandise, school teaching; by literary pursuits, by the learned professions, and by official stations; all of which afford nearly equal opportunities for the attainment of wealth and distinction. The pursuits of industry, professional life, literary productions, the navy, the army, the State, and the Church, all throw open
American Literature, using the term in its broadest sense, is another distinctive feature of the American Union, peculiar to itself; differing widely from all other nations, and, like all other American institutions, is founded on intrinsic excellence, and practical utility. Instead of founding a few universities and colleges, and making a few eminent scholars, which has ever been the policy of European nations, the United States very early adopted the wiser and better policy of creating cheap and free schools in the several districts of each town, for the education of every citizen,-in addition to their universities, colleges and other seminaries of learning. In these primary schools, every child is or may be educated, until he has acquired all the elements of a sound, practical education, sufficient to qualify him for any business, profession, or situation in life. Here the children are early taught to love and obey their parents, their country, and their God; and govern themselves and others, by the all-powerful law of moral suasion. There is no nation on earth, where the vernacular tongue is universally spoken with so much purity and uniformity; and, where useful knowledge is so universally diffused through all classes. These schools, numbering in all more than three hundred thousand, including common schools, family schools, select schools, academies,
colleges, universities, and all other institutions of learning; in which more than one-third of the American population of thirty million are constantly educated, form the strong bulwark of the country, and the principal element of national stability. Most of these schools and institutions of learning have libraries and philosophical apparatuses, sufficient for all useful purposes; with a permanent fund of more than two hundred million of dollars, to sustain them from its annual income. In these institutions, are taught the same arts and sciences, the same politics, morals, and religion; forming a literary unity throughout the Republic. If a three-fold chord cannot be easily broken, surely a thirty million chord of educated and free citizens never can be sundered. America is the world's university,-the common school of nations,—the only institution on the globe, where the principles of human liberty are rightly understood and correctly and freely taught to all, who wish to learn, without money and without price.
After ail these indissoluble and heaven-born bands of National Union, were any stronger ligaments necessary to secure the future stability of the government, they are found in the democracy of the people. One of the most distinguishing features between America and all other nations, is her republican democracy. Unlike the unbridled, savage democracy of anarchy, and uncivilized nations, which allows all to do as they please,-rule or ruin; American democracy,- composed of the pure elements of virtue, education, liberty, equality, fraternity, benevolence, reciprocity, law, government, progression, morals, and religion,makes superiors condescending, equals courteous, and inferiors respectful; and binds together all classes, with the ties,
of equal rights, founded on mutual forbearance, reciprocal concession, and the greatest good of all.
Progression is the pole-star of the nation. The motto of the American Government has ever been,—“ ONWARD." This sacred principle has never been departed from since the landing of the Pilgrim Fathers. It is the genius of American progression, to distinguish between destructive innovation, and useful improvement. The former is satisfied with reckless change, regardless of permanent utility, and the general weal, while the latter delights in the general good of all, and perseveringly aims at perfection. By this principle, no valuable acquisition is lost or impaired; but holding fast to the good already established,-supplying deficiencies, and refusing only what is wrong, the utility of the past is symmetrically united with the salutary reforms of the future, in a beautiful and sublime unity.
The social relations of the United States are an additional guarantee for the stability of the Union. More than one-half of American citizens within the United States, are the children of the New England, the Virginian, the New Jersey, and the Pennsylvanian fathers; who, scattered in every part of the nation, are connected with the white population by marriage, and other social relations; and all are so intimately bound together by the ties of friendship, consanguinity, and interest, that it would be difficult to find one in the whole Republic, who could, if he would, strike a blow at the government, without stabbing to the heart, his father or mother, brother or sister, child or servant, friend or lover.
The numerous and indissoluble ties of social intercourse which bind together American society, furnish ample security for the future stability of the