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of the country. In Perote an abundant deposit of munitions of war is directed to be formed, in order to guard them against the severity of weather in the north, and with other views of evident advantage. Provisional commissions have been given to the presidential companies, until the chambers shall pass the consulta of the 13th of March last, and supplies them with clothing, arms, and munition, to keep in order the uncivilized tribes. The Yaguis, in Alto-Sonore, have committed some murders; but the activity of the military chiefs and the political authorities, has placed them in a condition to demand peace, and to avoid the repetition of similar atrocities. Congress, granting means analogous to its philanthropic sentiments, and the compassion which those unfortunate branches of the human race inspires, facilitates further the acquisition of social enjoyments— banishing for ever the barbarous policy of the Spanish government, which by regulations, printed and circulated among the military chiefs on their frontiers, ordered that war should be provoked that their destruction should follow. Government has drawn them to all the stations by every means of peace and lenity; and the sword will not be drawn unless to punish insurrections. The points where we border on the enemy have been guarded by the opportune despatch of troops. The state of defence in Yucatan is very respectable, and the government, on account of its proximity to Cuba, has paid particular attention to it. These precautions are not superfluous, even though the physical and moral impotence of the enemy be visible. The fortifications of the important fortress of San Juan de Ultra are
begun to be repaired, in order that the first gate of the republic in the ocean may be maintained in perfect security.
Our navy, after having done its duty in the surrender of Ulloa, is employed in guarding our coasts from the incursions of pirates and smugglers. The vessels which are getting in readiness will augment its force in a short time, and protect commerce in the Mexican Gulf, keeping always in regular employment two sloops of war and a brig in the Southern seas. Our correspondence with California, which is paralysed for want of vessels, will soon be increased by two packets built in San Plas. The ship Congreso Mexicano, fully equipped, will weigh anchor from Acapulco within a month at latest, for the northern seas, where it will perform the useful services
confided to it by the nation.
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Knowledge is beginning to be diffused among all classes of society. The government delights to exert itself in improving the establishments for the purposes of education, in the formation of others, and in the efforts which are taken to effect a genuine and lasting spirit of intelligence among the people. A select meeting of citizens, lovers of the honour of their country, have conceived and realised the design of^erecting, in the capital, an institution for the improvement of science, literature, and the arts. The executive has approved of the statutes, and met the directors appointed to distribute the funds. The academy of San Carlos keeps the door open for the formation of good taste in those arts which add to the comforts of life; and has begun to form a national museum, which is to be the depository of all
that is rarest and most precious in our country, for the improvement of our youth and the admiration of foreigners. In the various states colleges are erected for the study of the physical and moral sciences, including political economy, legislation, and the other branches of knowledge, which the pusillanimity of the Spanish government prevented from being extended to us. The schools for primary instruction have also multiplied, and the system of Lancaster begins to become general. Various societies and academies second the rapid spread of information. The greater part of the states have purchased printing presses, and the freedom of thought in Mexico gives ample employment to them all. The government is occupied in forming an extensive plan of Education, which will merit from the chambers all the attention which its earlier labours entitled it to.
The working of the mines has given employment to much foreign capital; has revived our interior population, and animated our agriculture and our commerce Want of employment exists no longer; all hands arc occupied, and the hopes of those families are revived, which from opulence might have passed into the deepest pover
ty. A great supply exists in tne mint, and the circulation of the signs of value will augment with the public wealth. The introduction of machinery, and the arrival of consummateartistsamonguSjWill diffuse here those lights for which we once envied Europe. Imagination can scarcely picture the felicity which is in store for our country. Industry, which secondarily belongs to the foundation of our resources, visibly improves. Our paper, iron, glass, and cotton manufactories, all attest the activity and the talent and the enterprise of the Mexicans.
Hitherto the plan appearedproblematical of forming a communication between two seas, by cutting the isthmus of Tahuantepec by means of a canal; but this difficulty has disappeared, and it will be easy to form roads well calculated for commerce. The expedition which the government sent to this part of the country has returned, confirming this intelligence, having in a great measure effected its designs. The secretary of state will detail to the chambers the great efforts made by government to leave nothing undone in the important objects of creating and advancing the organization of the interior.
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Address of General Bolivar to the Constituent Congress of Bomvia, accompanying the Plan of a Constitution for the Government of that'State.
Legislators! — On presenting you with the plan of a constitution for Bolivia, I feel myself overwhelmed with confusion and timidity, from a persuasion of my unfitness for the task. When I re*
fleet that the wisdom of ages is not sufficient to draw up one fundamental law which is perfect, and that the most enlightened legislator is the immediate causeof human misery, and a mockery, as it were,
of his divine mission, what am I to say of the soldier who, born amongst slaves, and buried in the deserts of his country, has seen nothing but captives in chains, and brethren with arms in their hands to break them? I a legislator!Your mistake and my engagement dispute the preference: I cannot say who suffers most in this dreadful alternative—you, from the evils you must apprehend from the laws you have asked of me; or I, from the disgrace to which your confidence condemns me. I have made every effort to explain to you my opinions on the manner of governing free men ae* cording to the principles adopted amongst civilized nations, although the lessons of experience only present long series of disasters, interrupted by occasional gleams of good fortune. What guides are we to follow through the gloom of such sorrowful examples?
legislators, yourduties call upon you to resist the shocks of two powerful enemies which are constantly contending with each other, and both will attack you at once j tyranny and anarchy form an immense ocean of oppression, which surrounds a small island of liberty, perpetually struggling against the violence of the waves and hurricanes incessantly threatening to bury her in the deep. This is the sea in which your frail bark has to navigate, and whose pilot is so inexperienced. The plan of a constitution for Bolivia is divided into four political powers; one more having been added, without complicating the principal division of each of the ethers. The electoral power has received attributions which were not given to it in other governments generally considered to be most liberal. These attributions very much resemble those of the federal system. It has appeared not only prudent and useful, but likewise easy, to give to the immediate representatives of the people, the privileges which would be most coveted by the citizens of each department, its provinces and cantons. No object is of more importance to a citizen than the election of his legislators, magistrates, judges, and pastors. The electoral colleges of every provirice repre* sent its wants and interests; and are the organs of complaint for infraction of the laws, and for abuses of the magistrates. I may venture to say with some foundation that this branch partakes of the rights enjoyed by the government of the states of the federal system. In this way a new weight has been placed in the balance against the executive power; and the government has acquired fresh guarantees> more popularity, and additional claims to rank among those which are most distinguished for their democratic principles. Every ten citizens name an elector • the nation is thus represented by the tenth part of its citizens. Nothing is required but capacity, even property is not necessary, to exercise the august functions of sovereignty; but he must know how to write his vote, sign his name, and read the laws. He must profess some science or art by which he can secure an honest livelihood. None are excluded but those who are vicious, idle, and grossly ignorant. Knowledge and honesty, not money, are what is required for the exercise of the rights of the people. The legislative body is so composed that it must necessarily harmonize amongst its different parts j
it will never be found divided for want of a judge to arbitrate, as frequently occurs where there are only two chambers. There being here three, the difference between two is decided by the third; the question is examined by two contending parties, and another impartial one who decides it; in this way no useful law is put aside, or at all events it will have been discussed once, twice, or three times before it be rejected. In all affairs between two adverse parties a third is chosen to decide, and would it not be absurd not to adopt a measure, dictated by imperious necessity, in the most important interests of society? The chambers will thus preserve towards each other those considerations which are indispensable to the conservation of the union of the whole, who ought to deliberate in the silence of the passions in the calmness of wisdom. Modern congresses, it will be said, have been composed of only two bodies. It is because in England, which has been their model, the nobility and the people ought to be represented in two chambers; and if in North America they did the same, although they had not nobility, it is probable that habits derived from their living under the British government induced them to imitate it. The fact is, that two deliberating bodies must be in a continual state of contention ; on this account Sieyes proposed that there should be only one—strange absurdity!
The first chamber is that of Tribunes; they have the right of proposing all laws relative to finance, peace, and war. This body has immediate inspection over those branches administered by the executive with least interference on the part of the legislature.
The Senators have the formation of the codes and ecclesiastical regulations; they watch over the administration of justice and over public worship. The Senate chooses the prefects, judges of districts, governors, corregidors, and all other persons filling subordinate situations in the courts of justice. It proposes to the chamber of censors the members of the high court of archbishops, bishops, prebends, &c. Whatever has relation to religion and the laws is under the superintendance of the senate.
The Censors exercise a political and moral authority, which has some resemblance to that of the Areopagus of Athens and of the censors of Rome. They are, as it were, the fiscals of the nation against the government, to watch over the religious observance of the constitution and public treaties. I have placed under their protection the national jury, which is to decide on the good or bad administration of the Executive.
The censors are the protectors of public morals, the sciences, the arts, public instruction, and the press. The censors exercise the most terrible as well as the most august functions. They condemn to eternal opprobrium the usurpers of sovereignty and illustrious criminals. They grant public honours to the services and virtues of illustrious citizens. The appreciation of glory has been confided to their hands; the censors ought, therefore, to be of unsullied innocence and unspotted life. If they err, they shall be accused even for trifling faults. To these priests of the laws have been confided the custody of our sacred tables; for they it is who are to prevent their profanation.
The President of the Republic,
in our constitution becomes as the sun which, immoveable in the centre, gives life to the universe. This supreme authority should be perpetual, because in those forms of society where hereditary rank is unknown, a fixed point around which magistrates and citizens, men and things, should revolve, is required more than in others. "Give me a place to stand upon," said one of the ancients, "and I will move the world." In Bolivia this point is the president for life. Upon him depends all the regularity of our system, without, on that account, his possessing any active interference. He has been deprived of his head that his intentions may not excite alarm, and his hands have been tied that he may injure no one.
The president of Bolivia possesses some of the powers given to the Executive in the United States, but under restrictions favourable to the people. His continuance in power is the same as that of the president of Hayti. I have taken for Bolivia the Executive of the most democratic republic in the world.
The island of Hayti (you will forgive me thus digressing from my subject) was in a continual state of disturbance; after having tried an emperor, a king, a republic, all known forms of government, and others beside, she was forced to have recourse to the illustrious Petion for her salvation. They placed their confidence in him, and the destiny of Hayti was no longer subject to vacillation. On Petion being chosen president for life, with power to choose his successor, neither the death of this great man, nor the succession of the new president, have caused the least commotion in the state; every
thing has gone on under the distinguished Boyer with the tranquillity of a legitimate monarchy; —A triumphal proof that a president for life, with the power of naming his successor, is the most admirable feature in the republican system.
The president of Bolivia will be less dangerous than that of Hayti, the mode of succession being more secure for the welfare of the state. Besides, the president of Bolivia is deprived of all influence: he neither appoints the magistracy, nor the judges, nor to ecclesiastical offices, however subordinate they may be. This deprivation of power has never yet taken place in any well-constituted government; it adds obstacle to obstacle in the way of the authority of a chief, who will always find the whole people under the influence of those who exercise the most important functions in society. The priesthood has the control over the consciences of the citizens, the judges over their property, their honour, and their life, and the magistracy over the public acts of the nation. Being indebted to the people for their dignity, their glory, and their fortune, the president cannot hope to engage them in his ambitious designs. If to this consideration we add that which arises from the constant opposition a democratic government meets with at every step of its administration, it appears not unreasonable to suppose, that the usurpation of the rights of the people is less likely to occur in this government than in any other.
Legislators, henceforward liberty will be indestructible in America. Observe the uncultivated aspect of this continent, which alone expels the idea of a monarchical form of