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Our Most Prosperous Era

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Ex-Coinmiss 'oriar David A. Wells, wlio ,1 admittod thü hightstauthjrity on quet; ot tiix .iiona:iil revonue, in this o )untry, in a ruuent paper disoussing, historicklly, thu fiuaiiüial measures of our governnient, üxn the j.erio.1 of our greatest prosperity iu a Demooratic adminiztration, uut under a Democratie tari'. Fioni 1851 to 1860, and moro particularly during tho last tliroc y e-.trs ot this f.m ;, when tho tunif wa; uu average of 18 to 20 per cent., "the comparativo growch and progress attained by every dopvrmnt ot' American trudj, oommeroe ani inlusti-y was than íor any oirtp.iiiding period, elth ;r bofore or since, in tho histoi-y of tlic uuf.on." It was in tho luttor part of this poriod th t our común rcial tonnage rose to nyw rdso ' ttvo and a half ínillion too ; the co ton erop exci eiei uve milüon bales; our expjrt-s of manufactures Ta iched the t maximum ; and our consumption of sugar, o ii;e an 1 cotton cloth - tho bost test of genen 1 pröspjrity - reached tho laryst per cup ta ratuit has evt roaobed. Djring thu decadj frota 1K.10 to 1860, tho incroae of pópalo tio a w.ts over thirty fivo porcont., theinc oivj ol' wealth one hundrod and twenty-four per cent., and tho average of properfT to eaoh individual 0 10. it would be d fhcult," say3 the ex commissionor, t. find a moro happy illustration of tho influence of the non-interforence or non-obatru'jtivo policy of a governmont with the trade, oommeroe and industry oí' a high'y civilized, activo poople, thin th con Ullou of th9 United Stat!S at that time aff )rded." The Femoral govorninsnt iinposed no diroct taxos on the poople ; thero was no such thing known or thought of as Ínternal revonue, st unp-, exeiso, assessors and collectors ; tho oníy soarco of rovenuo that the governm nt a. plied towasa light impost of Ies3 th:i:i tw int p r cent, upon imported goo Is and the s le of public lands; and, low as the t ir Jf wís compared with tho (-je rbititnt ] r A cti.'o t:iriff whioh now exist?, it yie d3 1 sj l-.irgí; a surplus raveaoé tíit tïi : trouble with tho gov.rniu nt wü njt, ai now, how to incrasa it, buí how to reduce. At ouc timo there w ís sucli a s iperabnn lance of uune_d ;d mo ey in tho trjasi ry thit thu govoram at aotmlly diviled an ng the States $2S,ü()(),())(). Nor ww t'.iis prosporous ílihI pleasant s'at'; o: th-ngj due ent.rely to th fact that we h vi n i n itional debt to take caro' óf ; it ws at;riliut:ible, in a larg.? measure, to th ) aimp'ioity and frugality oí' our govenmien!al sys ti'in, aad thi pu'ity oí t!i3 c'iv 1 s;rvice that prova lo i iu th we dn r. Prom 1 S5 ! to 18til thj odiniry ox] eniitur.-s of tho goveminoiit were $"7,H;o, 0 ). at i 2 03 per o. th op ï'ation ; wlilctli; pjr capita o ' j) yin at on i;; uit ot the natioual dubt alone ïov 1S71 was $2 86, and the additional per capita churre tor othor expendiiores ia that yoar ws 94 87. In othor words, tho pw c ipita oost of tho sovernment, not inuluding tho national áebt, as twicu is gi-eat for tho List yer of the Ropablioun adruinistration is it was for the last yoLir of a Democratie


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Michigan Argus