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support schools denied the benefit of Government aid. He did not propose to subsidize private schools, except one description,-namely, Ragged Schools, which, he thought, ought to be included in the grant, if they complied with the requisite test. He moved the following Resolutions, which were seconded by Mr. Buxton:— “1. That the sums annually voted by Parliament for educational purposes ought to be made applicable to all the poorer schools throughout the country (not being private schools, or carried on for profit) in which the attendance and examination of the children exhibit the results required, under the Revised Code, by Her Majesty's Inspectors of Schools. “2. That to require the employment of certificated teachers or of pupil-teachers by school managers, as an indispensable condition of their participation in the Capitation Grant, is inexpedient and o to the managers of such schools.” Ir. Lowe, in opposing the motion, pointed out what he considered to be a contradiction between the Resolutions and the speeches of the mover and seconder, as well as the extravagant length to which the propositions contained in the Resolutions would lead, and the consequences which would result from the desired concessions, in the deterioration of the schools and the increase of expense. The object of the Committee of Privy Council, in the administration of the public grant, was to raise the character of education; and he defended the course they had pursued, which had put an end to irregularities and banished wild notions on the subject of teaching. After examining some of the objections to the Revised Code, he stated what was the real intention of that Code. The quality of the teaching had been excellent, but the Royal Commissioners had found it deficient in quantity, and he explained the measures adopted to remedy this defect. The grievance of which Mr. Walter complained, as regarded teachers, he insisted, was of small amount, and he denied that there was an thing in the Government requirements which savoured, as is: of monopoly. The system of the Revised Code, he observed, was yet untried, and, in deference to the wishes of the House, it had been deprived of much of its original vigour; but he maintained that, for reasons which he had stated, the Privy Council ought to adhere most firmly to the rule that no aid should be given to schools without certificated teachers. He could not rely, he said, upon managers, or even inspectors, there being many requisites in schools which neither could secure. The teacher was the life and soul of the school. He hoped, therefore, that the House would not give up the employment of certificated teachers, as an indispensable condition of participating in the public grant. If the existing system was not broken down, he was most sanguine as to the result. Mr. ADDERLEy, giving full credit to Mr. Walter for the perfect fairness of his proceeding, observed that the effect of his Resolutions was to endanger, at least, the principal features of a system which had subsisted so long and had cost so much. . The intention of the Resolutions was to establish an exceptional treatment of poorer schools, but nothing was more mischievous in a public grant than to make exceptions to a rule. It would be to grant more money on easier terms to those schools which least fulfilled the conditions. He denied that the poorer schools could not be got within the grant; they could, but they would not, and were selfexcluded. He defended the institution of training colleges, which supplied the best masters at the cheapest rate, and at which the Resolutions struck a fatal blow, breaking down the whole system. Mr. HENLEY reminded the House that the community was paying 1d. in the pound income tax for the education grant, and the Royal Commissioners said the people were not taught. Those who paid the tax wanted some of the grant; but the Government refused unless their trained teachers were taken. He admitted that this was a most difficult problem to deal with. Was Mr. Walter's motion, then, likely to bring home to small places some benefit in return for the money they had been long paying and getting nothing, or was it necessary to attach certificated masters to the schools P Was every master to be a paid servant of the Committee of the Privy Council P He repeated what he had before said, that the Privy Council system should be more elastic, and, believing that the Resolutions had a tendency to make it so, he should support the motion. After some further debate, the first Resolution was withdrawn, and the second was negatived on a division by 152 to 117.
Foreign Policy of England—Debates and discussions in Parliament upon transactions abroad—Affairs of Russia and Poland—Interruption of diplomatic relations between Great Britain and Brazil—Operations in Japan and in China—The dispute respecting Schleswig-Holstein—The Civil War in America—Embarrassing state of our relations with the Federal Government—Debates in the House of Lords respecting recognition of the Southern States—Important declaration of the Secretary for Foreign Affairs —Motion of Mr. Roebuck in favour of recognition and debate thereon in the House of Commons—Withdrawal of the Motion on the suggestion of Lord Palmerston— Controversies on International Law between this country and the Federal Government—Evasion of the blockade and contraband trade carried on by British merchants with the Southern States—Building of ships of war in this country for the service of that Power—Cases of the “Alabama,” the “Alexandra,” and other vessels —State of public opinion—Charges against, and vindication of, our Government for their conduct in these transactions.
THE discussions upon foreign affairs which from time to time take place in the British Parliament exercise, it may be safely averred, no unimportant influence upon the transactions to which
they refer. The declarations of Ministers of the Crown, as well as the free utterance of independent members of the Legislature, being copied into foreign newspapers, are read and discussed in distant capitals, exercise their influence on the judgment and opinion of multitudes, and no doubt often contribute with other elements to influence the counsels of kings and statesmen. A country which is itself governed, as England mainly is, by public opinion, affects also by the expression of that opinion the foreign Governments with which its own is brought into contact. The expression of Parliamentary criticism upon external affairs is indeed, on account of the weight it carries with it, a power to be used with caution and reserve; and for that reason it is in any critical posture of affairs usually deprecated by Ministers of the Crown, and, to the credit of Parliament, not often recklessly indulged. But, on the other hand, when a fitting occasion arises, and when a voice lifted up in the cause of humanity and justice may arrest unscrupulous aggression, or restrain the excesses of arbitrary power, such a voice has often been uttered with decisive effect; and the exercise of that moral power forms one of the noblest functions of a free Legislature. Among the occasions which arose during the present Session for declaring the sentiments of the English nation upon the policy of foreign powers, the insurrection in Poland, and the stern measures used by Russia for its suppression, formed one of the most prominent and frequent subjects of debate. In the House of Lords, the ground was first broken by Lord Ellenborough, who, a fortnight after the meeting of Parliament, moved for the production of papers relating to the immediate origin of the insurrection in Poland, and for communications between the Russian and Prussian Governments. The noble lord, in a speech of much earnestness and force, remarked upon the unexpected nature of this movement. He had hoped, from the spirit of conciliation lately evinced by Russia towards Poland, that a reciprocal good feeling had sprung up. But the conduct of the Russian police had entirely frustrated such expectations. After having made themselves acquainted with the political opinions of all in Poland capable of having an opinion, the police, on the night of January the 21st, without warning, seized and tore from their homes, in the most ruthless manner, for military service, not those who were fittest for a military life, but those whose political opinions were distasteful to them. This was the cause of the outbreak, and, in his opinion, no other course was open to the Poles, when there was no security for a man in the midst of his family. The revolt was provoked by the Russian Government; and he hoped that Her Majesty's Government, if they so thought, would express that opinion to Russia. Already the results of the insurrection had isolated Russia from the European system, and excited an intense sympathy in France which could not be ignored by the Emperor.
aving eulogized the course adopted by Austria in the matter, and strongly stigmatized the arrangement entered into by Prussia - for aiding the Russian Government in suppressing the insurrection, he concluded by expressing a confident hope that a constitutional kingdom might yet arise in Poland under the auspices of a free and noble people. Earl Russei,L could not give the report of the Consul-General at Warsaw, as it might place that gentleman in a very difficult position with both parties. He did not agree with Lord Ellenborough that the outbreak was entirely unexpected. Last year demonstrations occurred in the churches of Warsaw. In examining the causes which had led to the insurrection, it was necessary to remember that Polish society was divided into three classes—the landed aristocracy, the middle class, and the peasants, all of whom differed in their wishes and aims. The aristocracy had petitioned for a constitutional Government, but their address had been deemed unconstitutional, and so grave an offence that Count Zamoyski, who presented it, was banished. The middle classes, despairing from the past of any improvement in the administration of the country, formed secret societies, some of whose members held extreme views. Instead of endeavouring to conciliate these classes by introducing a better Government, the Emperor of Russia determined to adopt a different policy. The conscription was carried out in a manner calculated to excite an unhappy people to despair. In all cases a conscription was a severe measure, but most countries in which it was in vogue had tried to mitigate its harshness; and even in Russia a law was passed in 1859 for that purpose. But in the present case no regard had been paid to that law; men had been seized for their political opinions; and while the peasants had been exempted, the townspeople had been solely chosen for the army. He had told the Russian Minister it was a most unjust step for the Russian Government to take. In regard to the arrangement made with Prussia, he understood from the Prussian Ambassador that Russian soldiers would be allowed to pursue Polish insurgents within the Prussian frontier; and he had stated in reply, that he considered that Prussia had thereby made herself responsible after the fact for the measures of conscription that had been adopted. Austria had announced her intention of remaining true to her engagements to Russia, but the Galician Poles would still enjoy their privileges without the presence of more troops in their country. He regretted he could not produce the papers moved for. Lord MALMESBURY expressed his sorrow at the attitude taken by the Prussian Government. Only a few days afterwards the Polish question was brought forward in a formal shape in the House of Commons by Mr. Pope Hennessey, whose motion gave rise to an animated debate, and elicited some marked expressions of opinion. Upon the conduct and policy of Russia in provoking the insurrection, and on her mode of crushing it, there was a general unanimity of sentiment; upon the action to be taken by this country, and the mode of interference which the circumstances would justify, there was some difference of W1eV. Mr. HENNESSEY’s motion was for an address to the Crown, representing that certain treaty obligations incurred by England and other Powers with Russia, in respect to Poland, had not been fulfilled, but had been broken, by Russia (setting forth the nature of these joint obligations); that for years past the Poles had borne the violation of their national rights with exemplary patience; that their endurance and patriotic self-restraint had at length given way under an accumulation of unparalleled outrages, and the kingdom of Poland was now the scene of a desolating conflict between the troops of Russia and the people driven to desperation; and humbly submitting to Her Majesty that these facts demand the interposition of England in vindication of her own public faith and solemn engagements. In a very able speech he enlarged upon the provocations given to the Polish nation, and the severities exercised by the Russian authorities, insisting that the conflict now going on in Poland was owing entirely to the conduct of the Russian Government. The question, he said, had now become an English one, because England was a party to, and bound by, a treaty which had been violated by Russia, a fact which had been distinctly asserted by the First Minister of the Crown, in his place in that House, in the year 1861. The question, he observed, was a practical one, and peculiarly practical now, when there was an entire concurrence of opinion between England and France in favour of the Polish cause, and the conduct of the Austrian Government had received well-merited commendation. Even among the people of Russia there was a strong feeling in favour of Poland. He did not ask for hostile intervention; with the sympathy of the European Powers, parties to the Treaty of Vienna, Poland herself would be able to maintain her position. Mr. NEwdEGATE said he would be no party to urging upon Lord Palmerston any intervention in the affairs of Poland. If it was possible, by friendly offices, to mitigate the evils which Poland had suffered for so many years, Lord Palmerston would not fail to employ them. But, lamenting, as he did, the condition of Poland, the House ought to ask itself whether the Polish people were qualified for freedom. He doubted whether the condition of the country was such as to prove that they were so qualified. Mr. M. MILNEs observed that, although Mr. Hennessey meant nothing more than diplomatic interposition, the House was bound to look at possible consequences. The question was whether it was their duty to support the proposal for a peaceable interposition. He did not think we were bound to interpose by treaty; but he believed that the Emperor of Russia would listen to an expression