Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub

of money and life, than war with all its following tables will place this subject in a attendant slaughter and expense. The clear light.

Cost to Total Loss
WARS.

Great Britain. of Life.
War of the British Revolution

£ 31,000,000 230,000
War of the Spanish Revolution..

44,000,000 230,000 Spanish War and Austrian Succession 47,000,000 240,000 Nova Scotia, Seven Years' War

107,000,000 650,000 American War

151,000,000 340,000 War of the French Revolution

472,000,000 700,000 War against Buonaparte

586,000,000 1,400,000

in each year

in 50 years

£1,437,000,000 | 3,100,000 Present National Debt, £761,347,690. In the next table, the above time, com- are prepared from probable calculations mencing with the revolution in 1688, is certainly within the mark; that in the latter divided into three periods of fifty years each. period is formed from data, supplied by The estimates given in the two first periods, recent accurate investigation. From the Year Cost of Intoxication Deaths of drunkards

each year 50 years 1688 to 1740 £10,000,000 £500,000,000 15,000 750,000 1740 to 1790 20,000,000 1,000,000,000 30,000 1,500,000 1790 to 1840 50,000,000 2,000,000,000 | 60,000 3,000,000

Total Money £3,600,000,000 | Total Lives 5,250,000 These moderate estimates show that the lit never ceases it fearful warfare, but with expenditure entailed on the nation by the use insatiable appetite ever, “like a roaring of strong drinks, amounts nearly to three lion, walketh about, seeking whom it may times the sum expended in war. The destruc- devour.” tion of human life, occasioned by the same The national profit, if we may use the direful cause, bears a yet greater dis- phrase, to be placed against this amazing proportion. Alcohol destroys more lives, annual loss of one hundred millions of pounds and hurries more souls into an unbidden sterling, will be seen from the following table, eternity, than deadly steel or fiery powder. which exhibits the income which government Unlike the latter instruments of destruction, derives from the use of inebriating liquors. NET PRODUCE of the Custom and Excise Duties, for the Year conimencing

January 5, 1836.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

17,263,9111 The gain tcthe revenue is thus seen to be in the increased amount of production which £17,263,911, the loss to the country, and would follow universal temperance, that the consequently loss in most respects to the entire loss to the people of Great Britain, revenue is not less than £100,000,000. from the prevalence of intemperance and the Mr. Buckingham, however, who from his use of intoxicating drinks, is at least two extensive investigation of this subject, must | hundred millions of pounds sterling ! !" be considered as excellent authority, is of Fifty millions is the largest amount of opinion, taking every thing into considera- revenue ever realized in this country, even tion, and calculating a gain of £50,000,000, lin times of commercial prosperity; at a low calculation, not more than half the sum lost to domestic happiness, morals and religion, by the use of intoxicating liquors, so that and the national disgrace entailed by the abstinence from these pernicious compounds vice and profligacy, and the thousand namewould at once enable the people of Britain less ills which result from intemperance. to pay the interest, or in other words, dis- The following calculations, made on the charge the national debt. Nor does this above estimate, are contained in Mr. calculation include the loss of souls, which is Hickson's Report on hand-loom weavers :unknown and incalculable; the loss in regard ESTIMATED QUANTITY OF BEER AND SPIRITS consumed in the United Kingdom during the year 1836.

Spirits (chiefly Gin) distilled in England for Home-consumption. Duty paid on 7,875,702 gals Reduced for retailing 15 per cent 11,813,553 at 8s. 4,725,421 4 0

Spirits (chiefly Whiskey) distilled in Scotland for Home-consumption. Duty paid on

6,620,826 Reduced for retailing 15 per cent 7,613,950 14s. 5,329,765 0 0

Spirits (chiefly Whiskey) distilled in Ireland for Home-consumption. Duty paid on 12,248,772 Reduced for retailing 15 per cent 12,086,077 148. 9,860,260 18 Rum, duty paid on 3,324,749 Reduced for retailing 15 per cent 3,823,461 14s. 2,676,422 14 0 Brandy, duty paid on 1,292,271 Reduced for retailing 15 per cent 1,486,111 30s. 2,229,166 10 0

Malt used by Brewers and Licensed Victuallers. 4,279,468 Qrs. producing of Ale and Beer, at 108 gals. to the qr. 462,182,544 gals. at ls 4d. 30,812,169 12 0

Total cost of Ale and Spirits drank in the year 1836...... 55,633,205 18 0 Average expenditure in Beer and Spirits, per family on 5,000,000 families £11 2 61 Wine (not included)

6,809,212 gals. 20s. 6,809,212 0 0

[ocr errors]

S. d.

[ocr errors]

Total......... 62,442,417 18 0

From this statement, it appears that the spirits, hydrometer proof, £122,536 ; or sum of £11 28. 61d., is annually expended about £3 10s. per head. by each family in Great Britain, in intoxi- The following returns from the "finance cating liquors, exclusive of wine. According accounts,” exhibit the consumption of malt to the Australian almanack, the people of and British spirits, and of wine and foreign New South Wales, in 1829, paid for foreign spirits, together with the gross revenue for

the years 1838-9 and 1840.

[blocks in formation]

This table not only exhibits the gross of persons have become spirit drinkers than amount of revenue derived from this source, teetotalers.* but the startling fact, that within the last The returns for Ireland, however, show three years, notwithstanding the efforts of no less a decrease in the revenue in two Temperance Societies, a decidedly increased years, than £477,000, or a diminution of consumption of inebriating liquors has taken thirty-two per cent. off the Irish spirit duty place, both in England and Scotland, among alone. This amazing change is of course the operative classes of the community. With attributable to the operations of the Temthe exception of wine in Scotland, a decreased perance Society. consumption has taken place in those drinks To conclude this digression, it is now which are more particularly used by the important yet further to exhibit the immense opulent. The increase in British spirits national loss which arises from the use of between 1838 and 1840, has been more intoxicating liquors. than four per cent. The increase in popula- The same ruinous results attend the tion among the operatives, by whom these lamentable extension of the traffic in our liquors are chiefly used, cannot have been colonies. The Australian newspaper informs more than two per cent. This fact, remarks us, that distillation, originally, was permitted a recent writer, is more lamentable, when it (at Sydney) to encourage agriculture ; but is considered that the efforts of teetotalers on the most favourable supposition, only have tended unquestionably to limit the one hundred and four thousand and fortytotal number of drinkers. The inference four gallons have been distilled from fifty-two therefore is, that they who still drink, drink more than they did, or that a larger number * Facts and Figures, No. 1. p. 16.

thousand and twenty-two bushels of grain, two items alone there will remain a loss of at 58., equal to £13,005,10, an annual 1,500,000 dollars.* average in sixteen years of only £812 168. The Committee of the legislature of 10d. to the benefit of agriculture. Alto- Connecticut, to whom memorials on the gether, states the same authority, the revenue subject of intemperance from that State were has lost more than three times the amount referred, in their Report, May, 1838; inform which has gone into the pockets of the us, that from tables prepared with great care, settlers. The local taxation, however, to and founded on authentic documents, the which the settlers must be subject to repress amount annually expended in that State for crime, and to alleviate poverty, cannot fail intoxicating drinks, was more than a million to render this system one of considerable of dollars. Including the loss of time and loss even to them.

labour, they further add, and the cost of In the city of Washington, the revenue pauperism and crime, the annual expense to from the sale of ardent spirits, was about the State, probably exceeds 2,000,000 of 6000 dollars. The loss, as estimated by dollars. More than 1,000,000, however, is Judge Cranch, occasioned by the system, actually paid for the liquor annually conwas probably not much less than 100,000 sumed in the State. dollars.

Thus much as regards the revenue, derived In 1830 the support of pauperism in the from a system which spreads poverty, crime, county of Baltimore, Maryland, most of and misery wherever it is in operation. which was occasioned by the use of strong The Hon. William Cranch, chief judge of drink, cost more than 20,000 dollars. The the district of Columbia, some of whose revenue obtained did not exceed eight or ingenious calculations we have already nine thousand dollars.

adduced, estimated the annual consumption The expenses of the city of New York in of spirits, in America, prior to 1827, at 1832, as stated in the Report of the comp- seventy-two million gallons, which at 663 troller, were 893,886,29 dollars, 685,385,74 cents, makes forty-eight millions of dollars. of which were raised by a direct tax. The This amount, he correctly observes, is ansupport of the criminal, pauper, and civil nually lost to the country—as much lost as establishment, cost 315,782,98 ; and the if as many dollars were actually cast into the cholera, in addition to all public and private sea ; for the spirits are consumed without charities and individual expenditures, cost the least benefit in return. 102,575,85 dollars ; making a total of The grain destroyed, he further observes, 418,358,83 dollars. By far the greatest the labour of raising the grain, and conproportion of this expense, independent of verting it into spirits, the fuel consumed in innumerable other evils, were the fruits of the manufacture, are all lost to the country. about three thousand spirit-venders, licensed The farmer is paid for his grain, and the to deal out poison to two hundred and ten distiller for his liquor ; but, remarks this thousand souls. 22,137 dollars form the writer, the poor man who buys it gets no amount of compensation for this patronage return, but poverty, disease, and misery. of so destructive a traffic. A committee of To him, and to the country, it is worse than gentlemen who investigated this subject, a total loss. states as follows :-“We, the people, pay Judge Cranch, as we have before seen, about 400,000 dollars more than we should, estimates the loss of labour of three hundred if no drams were sold or drunk in the city. and seventy-five thousand drunkards, at Suppose that only half of the expenses of fifteen million dollars per annum, and the cholera were occasioned by drinking, and loss of ten years' labour of thirty-seven five-sixths of the criminal, police, and thousand five hundred men annually killed pauper establishments, and one-half of the by spirituous liquors, at eighteen million salaries of officers, it would amount to seven hundred and fifty thousand dollars. 302,099,15 dollars, which is now paid as a It is admitted, by all parties, that at least tax for licensed vices ; over 10,000 dollars three-fourths of the whole cost of crime in taken from the earnings of the people for the United States, is chargeable to the use every licensed grog-shop, which pays 10 of ardent spirits. Mr. Hopkins, of New dollars into the treasury.

York, who, remarks Judge Cranch, seems In the year 1810 it was estimated that to have been very cautious in his estimates, between five and six million bushels of grain gives as the result of his calculation, a total were destroyed by distillation in the United amount of eight million five thousand dollars States. On the supposition, that in twenty as the cost of crime to the United States, years this amount would be doubled, and three-fourths of which, chargeable to intem. that in 1830, twelve million bushels were perance, is six million five hundred and subjected to distillation at that period, and twenty-five thousand dollars. that this to the growers was worth 50 cents Three-fourths of the cost of pauperism in a bushel, making a total of 6,000,000 dollars. America is chargeable to the same cause. The annual cost of crime and of pauperism Mr. Hopkins estimates the whole annual produced by the use of spirituous liquors, cost of pauperism in the State of New York, was estimated at 7,050,000. Subtract from this the price of the grain, and from these * Sixth Report of American Temp. Soc., 1833.

exclusive of the city, to be three million no account is taken of the loss of the labour eight hundred thousand dollars ; the whole of the paupers, prisoners confined for debt, of which, he thinks, might be fairly charged nor of the cost of litigation created or ex. to intemperance. Three-fourths of this, cited by the use of ardent spirits, nor the however, is two millions eight hundred and salaries of judges, the expenses of jurors, fifty thousand dollars.

nor of the fees of counsel. To these, says Judge Cranch, might be An annuity of ninety-four millions of added the expense of those paupers who are dollars, remarks the same learned judge, supported wholly or partially by private and would, in twenty years, with simple interest individual charity, orphan asylums, insane only, at six per cent. per annum, upon each and other hospitals, and houses of refuge for years' annuity, from the time it became juvenile offenders—and the loss of labour of payable to the end of the twenty years, prisoners confined for trial, or for punish- amount to 3,064,800,000 dollars.

The ment by simple imprisonment, or for debt, valuation of all the lands, houses, and slaves, three-fourths of all which are properly in the United States, in the year 1815, exchargeable to the use of ardent spirits. The clusive of Virginia, South Carolina, and amount of private charity is probably much Tennessee, who agreed to pay their quotas greater than that of public.

of the direct tax, without a valuation, was The corporation of the city of Washington

Dollars. pays annually, for the support of the poor,

1,479,735,098 45-100 about three thousand five hundred dollars. If we add for Virginia 200,000,000 The population of the city was nineteen South Carolina .. 48,862,192 thousand, consisting of about three thousand Tennessee

42,715,618 five hundred families. The average amount of private charities must be more than one The aggregate will dollar a year for each family. Judge Cranch be

1,771,312,908 45—100 therefore adds another item of two million If we suppose the value to have increased eight hundred and fifty thousand dollars, since 1815, in proportion to the population, paid by the temperate for the intemperate. the then value of all the houses, lands,

The average number of prisoners in the and slaves in the United States, was gaol of the county of Washington, committed 2,519,009,222 dollars. According to this on criminal prosecutions, was about thirty. careful estimate, the amount annually lost The population of the county was nearly to the country by the use of ardent spirits, thirty thousand. At that rate, the average would be more than sufficient to buy up all number of criminal prisoners in the United the houses, lands, and slaves, in the United States, was twelve thousand. The labour of States once in every twenty years. each of these, if sober, would be worth upon IV. Evils resulting to national morals an average, probably fifty dollars a year from intemperance.-1. General examples beyond the cost of his support, amounting in past times. The influence of intoxicating to six hundred thousand dollars—three- liquors on the morality of a nation, has been fourths of which, chargeable to intemper- much the same in every clime and among ance, is four hundred and fifty thousand every people. An age of intemperance has dollars.

been invariably characterized by exhibitions According to these calculations, the cost of vice, the most disgusting in its nature, of the consumption of ardent spirits in the and the most fearful in its consequences. United States, was as follows:

The pages of sacred and profane history pre

Dollars. sent humiliating examples of this nature; 1st, 72,000,000 gallons of ar

and those instances have been found to be dent spirit, at 664 cents.... 48,000,000 more or less injurious in their consequences, 2nd, 100 days' labour, of 375,000

in proportion to the consumption of intoxi. drunkards, lost, at 40 cents 15,000,000 cating liquors. The condition of the ancient 3rd, 10 years' labour, of 37,500

Greeks, the Romans, and other nations, who men, killed by ardent spirits,

were accustomed to indulge in the use of at fifty dollars per annum for

strong drink, exhibits sufficient evidence of each man .....

18,750,000 this fact. The history of the British nation 4th, of the cost of crime to

abounds in similar examples. the United States

6,525,000 Maitland relates some striking illustra5th, of the cost of pauperism

tions which took place in the year 1575. to the United States

2,850,000 "The Lord Chancellor Bacon, having taken 6th, $ of the amount of private

into consideration the best means of removcharities

2,850,000 ing the evils which existed at that period in 7th, of 1 years' labour of 1200

London, in conjunction with the Lord prisoners lost, at fifty dollars 450,000 Mayor, and the Recorders of Southwark and

Lambeth, with whom he communicated, put The annual loss to the country

down above two hundred ale-houses in their by the use of ardent spirits was 94,425,000 several jurisdictions. This example was

followed in Westminster, the Dutchy of In this estimate, remarks Judge Cranch, Lancaster, the Liberty of the Tower Hamlets,

"'*

tried."*

" that

and other parts of Middlesex contiguous to calculations of the commissioners, was not London. At this time," says Maitland, less than ten millions of gallons ! “the city appears to have been under a In 1764, the Irish Parliament, among better regulation than perhaps it ever was other evils to which it adverted, as arising at any other time before or since, for during from the general use of ardent spirits, stated, the absence of the court (to which circum- in a resolution which passed the House, stance he partly attributes this reformation " that all the riots and combinations of late of morals) the lord mayor, recorder, and so frequent, are to be principally attributed other magistrates, did so effectually exert to the same cause.' themselves in putting the laws into execu- About this period, in the examination of tion against vice and immorality, that at the witnesses before the “ Grand Committee of assizes then held for the City of London, Trade,” it was observed, that one great there was not one single criminal to be cause of the idleness of the people, was the

too great use of spirituous liquors ;” The celebrated, learned, and pious Judge it was the principal cause of the riots and Hale, who flourished in the seventeenth tumults in the city; and that the people did century, made the following statement con- not seem to be the same race of people they cerning immorality occasioned by intemper- were twenty years ago.f At that period ance in his time; a statement, which will be multitudes of petitions were presented both found to describe the character of the present to the Irish and English Parliaments, setting age :-"The places of judicature which I forth the immorality and crime occasioned have long held in this kingdom, have given by the use of strong drink. me opportunity to observe the original One of these, presented in 1786, reprecause of most of the enormities that have sents the wretched state of the people in been committed for the space of near twenty consequence of the cheapness of spirituous years; and by due observation, I have found, liquors, and the facilities afforded for the that if the murders and manslaughters, the purchase of them by the Legislature. “ The burglaries and robberies, the riots and temptation being offered to the people in tumults, the adulteries, fornications, rapes, every street by the multitude of dram-shops and other enormities, that have happened in and public-houses, licensed for this purpose, that time, were divided into five parts, four they soon became weak, diseased, and disof them have been the issues and product of abled, unfit for labour, useless to the state, excessive drinking, at taverns or ale-house and burthensome to the community for meetings.”+

support, which, if refused, they endeavour Crime increased to a great extent during to obtain by theft, or robbery; that the the unusually extensive use of spirits in petitioners presume to apprehend, that whatGreat Britain, in the latter part of the last ever revenue may arise from this practice, it century.

cannot compensate the loss which trade, Maitland states, “ that the morals of the manufacture, and the public at large sustain, populace of London, were debauched to such by the decay of the health, strength, and a degree, that many of the petty shops, or population of the working classes, and the places where these destructive liquors were immorality, debauchery, and wickedness of sold, were nurseries of whores, thieves, every kind which is upheld and cherished sodomites, and the most abandoned mis- by it." creants.”I

The effects of spirits in producing crime In Ireland, frequent and open acts of and acts of violence, are well illustrated by insubordination resulted from the same cause. certain circumstances which attended the During several attempts to suppress the insurrection in 1798. The leaders of that illicit preparation and sale of spirituous movement (previously to the breaking out liquors, serious riots were of common occur- of the rebellion) endeavoured, by every means

The report of the commissioners in their power, to prevent the United appointed to investigate the subject, states, Irishmen" from drinking spirituous liquors, that some parts of Ireland had been abso- fearing lest they would break out into acts lutely disorganized and placed in opposition, of premature violence. In order to promote not only to civil authority, but to the this object, they circulated a pledge of military force of government. The report abstinence from spirituous drinks. When then proceeds to state, that the profits to be the necessary arrangements had been com. obtained from the evasion of the laws, had pleted, these restrictions were removed, and been such as to encourage individuals to in the years 1797 and 1798 (the period of persevere in these desperate pursuits, not- the rebellion) the consumption of spirits was withstanding the risk of property and life nearly one-fourth greater than it had been with which they had been attended. At this for two years before, or even was in the period, the annual consumption of ardent two years which succeeded its failure. Il spirits in that country, according to the * Irish Commons' Journals, vol. vii. p. 310..

[ocr errors]

+ Evidence before Irish Commons, Commons'

Journals, vol. x. Appendix 113. * Maitland's London, book i. p. 158, Edit. 1739. | Irish Commons' Journals, 1786, vol. xii. p. 53. + Sir M. Hale's Advice to his Grandchildren. || Inquiry into the Influence of Spirituous Liquors, Maitland's London, book i. p. 350.

p. 43; also Parliamentary Reports, 1797-8.

rence.

« ÎnapoiContinuați »