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Thus although Mr. Jefferson has eight votes, Mr. Burr six, yet the majority of the members prefer Mr. Burr.
Yesterday afternoon a salute of sixteen guns was fired on the battery, by the Artillery Company, under the command of Capt. Ten Eyck, in consequence of the election of Thomas Jefferson to the Presidency of the United States.
THIS man's character has been well illustrated by Mr. WILLIAM SMITH, now (in 1801) American Ambassador in Portugal.
A writer under the signature of Hampden, in the Richmond paper, after asserting the exclusive right of Virginia to fill the office of President, called the attention of the citizens of that state to the illustrious Thomas Jefferson, as the fittest character in the Union to fill the President's chair, and proceeded to enumerate the various pretensions of that gentleman.-In answer to Hampden, Mr. SMITH published a pamphlet, from which the following extracts are made.
“ But we should incur no danger in yielding to his claim in the fullest extent, because it must be obvious to men of the smallest experience in public life, that of all beings, a philosopher makes the worst politician ; that if any one circumstance more than another could disqualify Mr. Jefferson for the Presidency, it would be the charge of his being a philosopher. Not believing him to possess any more than the mask of philosophy, my objection to his election would certainly not rest on that ground; but as there may be soine, who, having read his works superficially, may have been
deceived by that character, which is sometimes acquired, because no one has been at the trouble to scrutinize and strip it of its borrowed garb, to them I repeat that, admitting him to be a most learned philosopher, such a character alone creates his disqualification for the Presidency.
“ In turning over the page of history, we find it teeming with evidences of the ignorance and mismanagement of philosophical politicians. The great Locke was employed to frame a constitution for Carolina ; but it abounded so much with regulations inapplicable to the state of things for which it was designed, so full of theoretic whimsies, that it
soon thrown aside. Condorcet, a particular friend of our American philosopher, was a great French philosopher; his constitution, proposed in 1793, contains more absurdities than were ever before piled up in any system of government; it was so radically defective, that its operation was never even attempted ; * Condorcet's political follies, and the wretched termination of his career, are well known; he had philosophy enough to know how to raise a storm, but not enough to avert its effects. The affairs of France have since been more ably conducted (except during the short aristocracy of Robespierre) by men who are good politicians, but, fortunately for France, not phia losophers.
* Hear what Boissy d'Anglas says of the constitution of Condorcet, a brother labourer in philosophy and politics of Thomas Jefferson : "meditated amidst intrigue and amb tion, conceived in the bosom of vice, that constitution is nothing more than the concentration of all the elements of disorder, and the organization of anarchy What indeed must we thivk of a constiruvon, which organizes the partial insurrection of powers, independent of the constituted authorities, and legalizes the reign of plunder and terror.” Compare this, Americans, with the principles and practice of the democratic societies, and the other supa porters of Thomas Jefferson !! VOL. XII.
“ Rittenhouse was a great philosopher, but the only proof we had of his political talents was his suffering himself to be wheedled into the Presidency of the Democratic Society of Philadelphia, a society with which he was even ashamed to associate, though cajoled and flattered into the loan of his name. Many other instances inight be adduced.
“ The characteristic traits of a philosopher, when he turns politician, are, timidity, whimsicalness, a disposition to reason from certain principles, and not from the true nature of man ; a proneness to predicate all his measures on certain abstract theories, formed in the recess of his cabinet, and not on the existing state of things and circumstances; an inertness of mind, as applied to governmental policy, a wavering of disposition when great and sudden emergencies demand promptness of decision and energy of action. If the laws are opposed and insurrection raises its crest, the insurgents will always calculate on the weakness and indecision of the executive (if a philosopher), and they will be justified in their calculations, for he will hesitate till all is lost; he will be wandering in the labyrinths of philosophical speculations, moralizing on the sin of spilling human blood, and foolishly' persuading himself that mankind can always be reclaimed and brought back to their duty by wholesome advice. His mind will be constantly attracted to his favourite pursuits; and his presidential duties will, of course, be postponed to more pleasing avocations.
“ Let us suppose one of these exploring and profound philosophers elected President of the United States, and a foreign minister, on his first introduction into his cabinet, surprising him in the act of inspecting the skin and the scarf skin of a black and a white pig, in order to discover the causes of difference which nature has created in
their colour, or with the same view anatomizing the kidnies and glands of a Negro, to ascertain the nature of his secretions? Would not the minister's first observation be, that the philosopher would be much better employed in his retirement at honie, and his second, that such a President would furnish excellent materials for him to make use of.
But, although I have thus denied to Mr. Jefferson the title of a real philosopher, I am ready to allow that he possesses the inferior characteristics, and the externals of philosophy. By one, ambitious of passing with the world for a philosopher, the first were easily acquired, the last as easily assumed. The inferior characteristics, as applied to the science of politics, are a want of steadiness, a constitutional indecision and versatility, visionary, wild and speculative systems, and various other defective features, which have been already pourtrayed-Indeed, so unsettled is the mind of a rould be philosopher, so capricious and versatile are the principles of these philosophical mimics, that they attempt to reconcile the inost irreconcilable theories, and to justify the most inconsistent acts, by the same standard. Thus you will find these predenders to philosophy, at one moment, coolly justifying the most atrocious and sanguinary cruelties, provided they are means to a certain favourite end; at another, cautiously dissuading from vigorous, though necessary measures, lest they miglio fatally issue in the shedding of human blood. Condorcet and Brissot were, like Jefferson, reputech philosophers: they set up certain wild and mischievous theories of government; of course, followed the emancipation of the Negroes in the French West Indies, and, of course, the massacre of the whites, and the desolation of the colonies : this was represented to them, by a deputation from the colonies, warning them of the fatal conse- ,
quences of their principles. What was Philosopher Condorcel's reply? Attend to it, citizens of the southern states !! He answered with true philosophic calmness, “ Perish all the colonists, rather than that we should deviate one tittle from our principles.” This is the enlightened Condorcet, to whom his friend Jefferson, stimulated by a sympathetic philanthropy, sent Banneker's Almanac, `as the highest proof of his admiration of the Negro's work. This is the same Condorcet who could, with calmness, see the colonies laid waste, and thousands of aged colonists and innocent women and children massacred, and yet was perpetually preaching up philanthropy and universal benevolence. Brissol was much such another character, and they both deservedly met the same fate.
“ As'ignorant people are often imposed upon by an appearance of philosophy, those, who have ambitious designs, readily assume its externals: these consist in a ridiculous affectation of simplicity and humility, in a thousand frivolities, and little puerile tricks, which always render the performer contemptible in the eyes of discerning people, who soon discover that under the assumed cloak of humility, lurks the most ambitious spirit, the most overweening pride and hauteur, and that the externals of simplicity and humility afford but a flimsy veil to the internal evidences of aristocratic splendour, sensuality and epicureanism.
“ Mr. JEFFERSON has been held up and characterized by his friends as the “ quiet, modest, retiring philosopher--as the plain, simple, unambitious republican.” He shall not now, for the first time, be regarded as the intriguing incendiary -the aspiring turbulent competitor-unless facts shall warrant the suggestion : of these an enlightened public must judge.