General Smith’s Views of the Powers and Policy of the Government of the United States, 7 February 1844

  • Source Note
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a genuine rule of action for some of the breath made men in high places, to use towards the posterity of that noble daring people:
“Be to her faults a little blind;
“Be to her virtues very kind.”
We have had democratic presidents: whig presidents; a pseudo democratic whig president; and now it is time to have a president of the ; and let the people of the whole , like the inflexible Romans, whenever they find a promise made by a candidate, that is not practised as an officer, hurl the miserable sycophant from his exaltation, as God did Nebuchadnezzar, to crop the grass of the field, with a beast’s heart among the cattle.
said in his inaugural address, that he went “into the presidential chair the inflexible and uncompromising opponent of every attempt, on the part of Congress, to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, against the wishes of the slave holding states; and also with a determination equally decided to resist the slightest interference with it in the states where it exists.” Poor little made his rhapsodical sweep with the fact before his eyes, that the state of , his native state, had abolished slavery, without a struggle or a groan. Great God, how independent! From henceforth slavery is tolerated where it exists: constitution or no constitution; people or no people; right or wrong; vox ; vox Diaboli: “the voice of ”—“the voice of the devil;” and peradventure, his great “Sub-Treasury” scheme was a piece of the same mind: but the man and his measures have such a stricking [striking] resemblance to the anecdote of the Welchman and his cart-tongue, that, when the constitution was so long that it allowed slavery at the capitol of a free people, it could not be cut off; but when it was so short that it needed a Sub-Treasury, to save the funds of the , it could be spliced! Oh, granny, granny, what a long tail our puss has got! As a Greek might say, hysteron proteron: the cart before the horse: but his mighty whisk through the great national fire, for the presidential chesnuts, burnt the locks of his glory with the blaze of his folly!
In the the people are the government; and their united voice is the only sovereign that should rule; the only power that should be obeyed; and the only gentlemen that should be honored; at home and abroad; on the land and on the sea: Wherefore, were I the president of the , by the voice of a virtuous people, I would honor the old paths of the venerated fathers of freedom: I would walk in the tracks of the illustrious patriots, who carried the ark of the government upon their shoulders with an eye single to the glory of the people: and when that people petitioned to abolish slavery in the slave states, I would use all honorable means to have their prayers granted: and give liberty to the captive; by paying the southern gentleman a reasonable equivalent for his property, that the whole might be free indeed! When the people petitioned for a national bank, I would use my best endeavors to have their prayers answered, and establish one on national principles to save taxes, and make them the controllers of its ways and means; and when the people petitioned to possess the teritory of or any other contiguous teritory; I would lend the influence of a chief magistrate to grant so reasonable a request, that they might extend the mighty eforts and enterprize of a free preople from the east to the west sea; and make the wilderness blossom as the rose: and when a neighboring realm petitioned [p. 11]
a genuine rule of action for some of the breath made men in high places, to use towards the posterity of that noble daring people:
“Be to her faults a little blind;
“Be to her virtues very kind.”
We have had democratic presidents: whig presidents; a pseudo democratic whig president; and now it is time to have a president of the ; and let the people of the whole , like the inflexible Romans, whenever they find a promise made by a candidate, that is not practised as an officer, hurl the miserable sycophant from his exaltation, as God did Nebuchadnezzar, to crop the grass of the field, with a beast’s heart among the cattle.
said in his inaugural address, that he went “into the presidential chair the inflexible and uncompromising opponent of every attempt, on the part of Congress, to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia, against the wishes of the slave holding states; and also with a determination equally decided to resist the slightest interference with it in the states where it exists.” Poor little made his rhapsodical sweep with the fact before his eyes, that the state of , his native state, had abolished slavery, without a struggle or a groan. Great God, how independent! From henceforth slavery is tolerated where it exists: constitution or no constitution; people or no people; right or wrong; vox ; vox Diaboli: “the voice of ”—“the voice of the devil;” and peradventure, his great “Sub-Treasury” scheme was a piece of the same mind: but the man and his measures have such a stricking [striking] resemblance to the anecdote of the Welchman and his cart-tongue, that, when the constitution was so long that it allowed slavery at the capitol of a free people, it could not be cut off; but when it was so short that it needed a Sub-Treasury, to save the funds of the , it could be spliced! Oh, granny, granny, what a long tail our puss has got! As a Greek might say, hysteron proteron: the cart before the horse: but his mighty whisk through the great national fire, for the presidential chesnuts, burnt the locks of his glory with the blaze of his folly!
In the the people are the government; and their united voice is the only sovereign that should rule; the only power that should be obeyed; and the only gentlemen that should be honored; at home and abroad; on the land and on the sea: Wherefore, were I the president of the , by the voice of a virtuous people, I would honor the old paths of the venerated fathers of freedom: I would walk in the tracks of the illustrious patriots, who carried the ark of the government upon their shoulders with an eye single to the glory of the people: and when that people petitioned to abolish slavery in the slave states, I would use all honorable means to have their prayers granted: and give liberty to the captive; by paying the southern gentleman a reasonable equivalent for his property, that the whole might be free indeed! When the people petitioned for a national bank, I would use my best endeavors to have their prayers answered, and establish one on national principles to save taxes, and make them the controllers of its ways and means; and when the people petitioned to possess the teritory of or any other contiguous teritory; I would lend the influence of a chief magistrate to grant so reasonable a request, that they might extend the mighty eforts and enterprize of a free preople from the east to the west sea; and make the wilderness blossom as the rose: and when a neighboring realm petitioned [p. 11]
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