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For MONDAY, January 6, 1783.
Extra&of a very important and interesting Pampblet, jaft pub
libed, by ibe Right Hon. the Eart of Stair, entitled, “ A State of the Public Debts, and of the annual Interest and Benefits paid for them, as they will ftand on the sth of January, 1783, and 1784 ;" to which the Attention of the Public is requested, befere they decide as 10 PEACE'or War, which is still a Matfer of great Doubt. OUR present men in power, after reprobating, in the strongeft V and moft unequivocal terms, the present war, as a conteit too unequal to promise even a possibility of success, have rushed into the public adminiftration without having concluded, 01, as far as I can see, having any probable hopes of concluding a peace. After their frequent, indeed their never-ceasing des clarations, that so enormous was our military expence, that even laccess might protract, but could not prevent our ruin, they have undertaken the government, and continued the war, without materially diminishing the expence of it ; without even having it in their power to do so : for the war, on our part, being almost entirely defensive, the state and limits of expence are in the op. tion and power of our enemies, not in our's. ..
The experience of the time that has elapsed since my last publication, and, above all, the facts authenticated by the report from the committee of the House of Commons, appointed to enquire into the actual fate of our finances, have made most
VOL. I. 1.
of what I then offered to the public as well-founded conjecture, now matters of truth, reality, and proof. A report from a committee of the House of Commons, unanimously appointed, framed, though without presumption or pretension, yet with great ability, openness, perspicuity, impartiality, and candour, annihilates every weak or interested argument against the propriety of disclosing to the world the real state of our internal situation and relources..
Indeed, without this aid, so conclusive to the point in ques. zion, from what is, and must constantly, from the nature of our constitution, be laid before parliament, none but those who are too dull to understand, or those who are too indolent to take the trouble of a very simple and easy investigation and deduction, need want any material information as to the true state of the nation ; and to persons of these descriptions, no information whatever will be of any use. I mean, therefore, to adduce what additional facts have occurred in proof of the two propofia tions I laid down in the pamphlet I published in the beginning of this year , entitled, Facts and their Consequences.
The propositions are :
2d. That there are the most probable inducements to believe that the net annual revenue of this country can never be brought for a permanency; and average of years, to exceed twelve milJions.
I shall now proceed to state the national debt as it will stand on the 5th of January, 1783, and the interest that is, or will be to be paid for it. The capital debt (as none of it can ever be expected to be paid) is, I am afraid, but a mere matter of curiofity ; though I could with it to be a inaiter of serious reflection, and on that account have stated it. The funded debt on the 5th of January,
1783, amounts to - - - £. 197,325,500 The value of 980,3381. of annuities, given
as premiums, some for life, some for
37,766,338 Borrowed on the 6d. in the pound civil list duty
1,000,000 Equivalent to Scotland
Total capital debt on the 5th of January, 1783, for 250,040,388, For which is, or will be to be paid annually by the public. : Intereft of debt already funded,
- £. 7,481,311 Interest on the million borrowed on the civil lift 6d. duty,
— ' 30,000 Interest on the Scotch equivalent, and 2000l. . . paid yearly to Scotch fisheries, &c.
12,000 Intereft on the above 37,766,3381. unfunded
debt at 5 i-half per cent. charges at the Bank included, nearly
: 2,100,000 The charges at the Bank on loans 1781 and 1782, not yet allowed, nearly
Total to be paid annually to the creditors of
the public, on the 5th of January, 1783, 9,638,311 The civil lift and peace establishments will require annually -
- 5,500,000 Total annual charges on the public on the sch of January, 1783, net money, - - £115,133,311
It is believed the account is now just, or so to a trifle. If so, and if the annual net amount of the public revenue cannot be brooght to rise higher than twelve millions, (and we think we shall in the sequel thew that there is no great probability that it will rise higher, as government inust be carried on,) the whole of the deficiency must fall on the creditors of the public, who, instead of receiving annually 9,638,311 l. will only receive 6,500,000 l. or 13s. 6d. in the pound.
Should we be compelled to continue the war for another year, it may be fairly presumed the charge will not be less for 1783 than it was for 1782. If fo, the public account will stand on the 5th of January, 1784, as follows : To the loan as in 1782, - - - £: 13,500,000 Provisions omitted, or short and defective
funds taken for more than they will pro
duce in 1782, Balance of the debt of the navy, after allow
ing the 1,500,000 l. carried towards it
from the supplies 1782, The whole encrease for the year ending the 31st of December 1781, being 4,145,7221. Balance therefore is - £. 2,641,722
The finking fund, taken for , more than it will produce, cre.
diting half a year more of the
cent. to 3 per cent. - 920,695 Deficiency of funds for 1783, by
the interest running before
least can be made productive, • 350,000 ;
receiving the loan, &c. - 10,669
4,521,988 Total new debt, that must be contracted if
the war continues during 1783, - - 6. 18,021,988
Interest on 18 millions only, at 6 per cent.
lic (if the war continues) on the sth of
Capital debt on the 5th of January, 1783, was .. 250,040,000 Addition, if the war continues during 1783, 18,021,988
Total capital debt on the 5th of January, 1784, f. 268,061,988
Interest payable to the creditors on the 5th of January, 1783,
Additional interest for debt contracted, if
the war continues for 1783,
lift establishments - - Total annual charge of net monty on the
public, if the war continues for 1783, med
Which, on the most probable fuppofition, that the public revenue cannot on a permanency, and average of years, be brought to exceed twelve millions net annually ; the creditors, in that case, in place of 10,729,311. will receive annually only 6,500,000l. or 12s. id. in the pound.
The foregoing accounts must certainly strike every thinking mind with astonilhment, and apprehenfion for the consequences. They are, indeed, more like unto the feverith dreams of mad speculation, than unto the real unexaggerated state of the finances of a wife, enquiring, philosophical people. And, in truth, wichoat fome one or other of the illustrious competitors for the management of the treasures of this opulent country have, amongst their other great acquirements, of which we hear so much, got poffeffion of the grand fecret, the great work, the Pbilofopber's Stone, (and I do not know that any of them have as yet urged that plea,) I cannot see how they are to go on. Ridicule may, perhaps, do more, at least I am sure it cannot do less, than serious admonition has done.
Avarice and credulity may promise any thing, on extravagant terms being offered ; but, in the event of public misfortune, or even on the change of the caprice of public opinion, how are they to make good their promises? If they fail in time of war, the worst of ruins, anarchy enfues. In time of peace, the pubfic not being able to completely fulfil their engagements to their , creditors, will be a great calamity ; but will not, I hope, endanger che safety of the state. Indeed, most of the few public creditors who look beyond the price of the day, see that this laft event muft neceffarily happen soon. The funds are now kept up at the rates they are at, only by an idea fo generally prevalent, that peace must be at hand, because we are no longer able to go on with che war ; and consequently, as has generally bappened on a peace, there will be a great rise in the value of government fecurities, which every-body hopes, by felling out to profit by į not refleđing, that if all croud to market with their tock at one time, the quantity on sale exceeding, as it needs muft, the demand, the price cannot advance.
A TUTOR's Account of the Family in which be was engaged,
and-of his PUPIL's Course of Studies, MA Y father bred me to the study of letters, and, at his 1 1 death, left me in poffefion of a fortune, not sufficient to check my industry in the pursuit of knowledge, but more than sufficient to secure me from servile dependence.