Every dollar of tax imposed on our exchanges in the shape of duties impairs, to that extent, our capacity to meet the severe competition to which we are exposed; and nothing but a system of high protective duties, long continued, can prevent us from meeting it successfully. It is that which we have to fear.
There is not an example on record of any free state holding a province of the same extent and population without disastrous consequences. The nations conquered and held as a province have, in time, retaliated by destroying the liberty of their conquerors through the corrupting effect of extended patronage and irresponsible power.
I will not undertake to offer an opinion on the capacity of Hindustan to produce cotton. The region is large, and the soil and climate various, the population great and wages low; but I must be permitted to doubt the success of the experiment of driving us out of the market, though backed and patronized by English capital and energy.
Where wages command labor, as in the non-slaveholding States, there necessarily takes place between labor and capital a conflict, which leads, in process of time, to disorder, anarchy, and revolution if not counteracted by some appropriate and strong constitutional provision. Such is not the case in the slaveholding States.