"A Lecture on Free Trade"

Hodgskin, Thomas
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London: G. J. Palmer
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THE present meeting has, by my recommendation, been made completely open and free, and I appeal to you, by carrying it to its close with good temper and perfect order, to honour the bill I have ventured, in full confidence; to draw on the good sense of the people. If you redeem my pledge, those restrictions on public meetings which have of late been borrowed from the fears of Exeter Hall, and which, in the pursuit of freedom, are as little defensible in my estimation as restrictions on trade, will be hereafter discarded, and we shall much extend the basis of the popular union and increase the popular power.

The purpose for which we meet is that I may advocate the total and immediate repeal of the Corn Laws, and call on you to exert yourselves to put an end to them for ever. I make no pretensions to throw any new light on this much-discussed question, but I venture to plead for repeal from a sincere desire to promote it. Do not expect to be amused...[From the text]