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since 1814, though formed under rigorous acceptation. In the acdifferent circumstances, and actu- tual state of things, facts, when ated by different impulses, have not entirely suppositious, are only been exposed to the same attacks, presented to many millions of and to the same unbridled expres- readers curtailed, disfigured, and sions of passion. Sacrifices of mutilated in a most odious manner. every kind, concessions of power, A thick cloud raised by the jouralliances of party, nothing has nals disguises the truth, and in a been able to protect them from this measure prevents a perfect undercommon destiny. This fact alone, standing between the government so fertile in reflections, suffices and the people. The kings, your to assign to the press, its true, and predecessors, Sire, have been deunvariable character. It labors sirous freely to communicate with by continuous and persevering ef- their subjects; but this is a satisfacforts daily repeated, to loosen all tion which the press is not willing the bonds of obedience and sub- that your Majesty should enjoy. ordination, to weaken the springs A licentiousness which bas outof public authority, to sink and stripped all bounds even upon the debase it in the opinion of the most solemn occasions, and neithpeople, and to create for it every- er respected the express wishes of where embarrassments and resist- the king nor the addresses made ance.
to them from the throne. The Its art consists not in substitut- one has been mistaken or perverting for a credulous submission of ed and the others have been the the mind the healthy liberty of subject of perfidious commentary examination, but to reduce the or bitter derision. It is thus that most positive truths to problems; the last act of royal authority, the not to invite a frank and useful proclamation, fell into general discontroversy upon political ques- credit even before it was known tions, but to present them in a to the electors. false light and to resolve them by This is not all — the Press has sophisms.
a tendency to subjugate the soveThe press has thus disordered reignty and usurp the powers of the most upright minds, shaken the State. The pretended organ the firmest convictions, and pro- of public opinion, it aspires to duced in the bosom of society a direct the debates in the two confusion of principles which fa- Chambers, and it incontestably vors the most disastrous attempts. exercises an influence upon those Anarchy in doctrines is a prelude debates, no less baneful than deto anarchy in the State.
cisive. This dominion in the It' is worthy of remark, Sire, Chamber of Deputies, especially that the periodical press has never for the last two or three years, fulfilled its most essential condition, has assumed a manifest characnamely, publicity. It may appear ter of oppression and tyranny. strange, but it is no less true, that we have seen in this interval the there is no publicity in France, journals pursuing with insult and taking this word in its just and outrage numbers whose vote ap
peared to them either uncertain to the great interests of humanity, or suspected. Too often, Sire, it does not depend upon it that the freedom of the deliberations Europe is no longer subject to a in this Chamber has fallen a sac- cruel slavery, and shameful tribute. rifice to the renewed attacks of This was not enough. By a
treason that should be amenable We cannot qualify, in more to our laws, the press has engaged moderate terms, the conduct of itself in publishing all the secrets the opposition journals in relation of the armament, in making known to recent events, After having to the stranger the state of our themselves provoked an address, forces, the number of our troops, attacking the prerogatives of the that of our vessels, the indication throne, they have not scrupled to of the points of station, the means consider the reelection of the 221 to be employed to overcome the Deputies who voted this address, as inconstance of the winds, and to a matter of principle, notwithstand- land upon the coast. Everying your Majesty objected to this thing, even to the place of disemaddress as offensive; it attached barkation, has been divulged, as public reproach to the refusal of if to afford a surer means of deconcurrence which was there ex- fence to the enemy, an unexampled pressed; it announced its un- circumstance among civilized nashaken resolution not to defend tions. By false alarms concernthe rights of your crown so openly ing the dangers to be encountered, compromised. The periodical it has not feared to throw disprints have paid no attention to couragement into the army, and this -- on the contrary, they have to mark for its batred even the considered it a duty to renew, to chief of the enterprise ; it has, perpetuate, and to aggravate the so to speak, excited the soldiers offence. Your Majesty will de- to raise against him the standard cide if this rash attack should a of revolt, or to desert their colors, longer time remain unpunished.
This is what the organs of a party, But of all the excesses of the pretending itself national, have press, perhaps the most serious dared to do. remains to be mentioned. From What it dares every day to the very commencement of the perform in the interior of the expedition, the termination of kingdom, tends to nothing less which has thrown a glory so pure, than to disperse the elements of and an eclat so durable, upon the public tranquillity, to dissolve the noble crown of France, the press bonds of society, and unless they bas criticised, with a violence un- have deceived themselves, make heard of, the causes, the means, the earth to tremble under our the preparatives, and chances of feet. Let us not fear to reveal success of this expedition. In- the whole extent of our troubles, sensible to national honor, no that we may the better appreciate thanks to it that our ensign does the extent of our resources, not remain tarnished with the Systematized defamation, organinsults of a barbarian, Indifferent ized upon a grand scale, and di
rected with unexampled persever- proclaimed. Placed and replaced, ance, extends even to the most at different intervals, under the humble of the public function- discipline of the censure, as often aries. No one of your subjects, as it bas regained its liberty it has Sire, if he receives the least mark recommenced its interrupted work. of confidence or satisfaction, is To insure greater success it secure from outrage. A large has been sufficiently aided by net, extending over France, envel- the Departmental press, which, opes all the public functionaries; by exciting jealousies and local impeached before the public, hatreds, by sowing consternation they appear in a inanner shut out in the bosoms of the timid and from society; none are spared by tormenting the authorities with but those whose fidelity wavers; interminable stratagems, have exnone are praised but those whose ercised an almost decisive influfidelity falls a sacrifice - the rest ence upon the elections. are marked out sooner or later These last effects, Sire, are to, be immolated to popular ven- momentous; the more durable geance.
results may be remarked in the The press has not manifested morals and character of a nation. less zeal in attacking, with its en- A violent lying and passionate venomed darts, our religion and polemic school of scandal and our clergy. Its object is to root licentiousness, produces serious out the last germs of religious and profound altercations : it gives sentiments. Doubt not, Sire, but a false direction to the minds of by attacking the basis of our men, fills them with perversions faith, corrupting the sources of and prejudices, diverts them from public morals, and by heaping serious investigations, injures also derision and contempt upon the the progress of the Arts and the ministers and altars of our holy Sciences, excites among us a religion, that it will accomplish continually increasing fermentaits purpose.
tion, and maintains, even in the No force, we must avow, is bosom of families, fatal dissensions, capable of resisting so energetic and may gradually conduct us a dissolvent as the press. At all back to a state of barbarism. periods, when its shackles have Against such a variety of evils, been stricken off, it has burst engendered by the press, law and forth and invaded the State. justice are equally compelled to Notwithstanding the diversity of acknowledge their impotence. circumstances and the numerous It would be superfluous to inveschanges of individuals who have tigate the causes which have aroccupied the political arena, we rested and insensibly rendered cannot but be forcibly impressed useless a weapon in the hand of with the similarity of its effects power. It is sufficient to interroduring the last fifteen years --- in gate experience and to remark a word, it is destined to recom- the present condition of things. mence the revolution, the princi The proceedings of the Juples of which it has so openly diciary furnish with difficulty an
efficacious repression. This truth, are too real not to be heard, verified by observation, has for a these wishes are too legitimate long time been apparent to good not to be listened to. minds : it it has lately acquired a There is but one means of more marked character of evi- satisfying them, it is to return to dence. To satisfy the necessity the Constitution — if the terms which gave rise to it, repression of the eighth article are ambigushould be prompt and powerful ous, its measure is manifest. It on the contrary, it has remained is certain that the Constitution has slugglish, feeble, and almost void; not conceded the liberty of the wben it happens, the injury is press to journals and periodical committed and the punishment writings. The liberty of pubfar from repairing the injury, adds lishing our personal opinions does. to it the scandal of debate. not certainly imply the right of
Juridical proceedings tire; but publishing by way of speculation, the seditious press never tires. the opinions of others. The one The one is embarrassed because is a use of a faculty that the law there is too much to punish, the is at liberty to grant or to submit other multiplies its forces by mul- to restrictions; the other is a tiplying its delinquencies. Under speculation of industry, which, different circumstances, prosecu- like all others, and more than all tions have had their different others, supposes the supervision periods of activity or relaxation. of public authority. But what imparts to the press The meaning of the Constituzeal or lukewarmness on the part tion in this particular is exactly of the public minister, it seeks in explained by the law of the 21st an increase of its excesses a of October, 1814 ; we can place guarantee to their impunity. the more reliance upon
this as the The insufficiency, or rather the law was presented to the Chamber inutility of the precautions estab- the 5th of July, that is to say, one lished by the laws in force, is month only after the adoption of demonstrated by the above-named the Constitution. In 1819, an facts, and it is equally established epoch when a contrary system that the public security is com- prevailed in the Chambers, it was promised by the press. It is time, openly proclaimed that the periit is more than time, to arrest its odical press was not governed by ravages.
the 8th article. This fact is conListen, Sire, to this prolonged firmed by the laws even which cry of indignation and conster- have imposed the necessity of a nation which arises from all parts censure upon the journals. of your kingdom. Moderate men, Now, Sire, it only remains to good citizens, and the friends be decided how this return to the of order, raise towards your Ma- Constitution and the law of the jesty their supplicating hands. 21st of October shall be accomThey beseech you to preserve them plished. The present serious asfrom the return of those calami- pect of affairs has resolved the ties under which our forefathers question. so long groaned. These alarms We must not deceive ourselves
we are no longer in the ordina- ance with the spirit of the constiry condition of a representative tution, but, which are contrary to government. The principles upon legal order, the whole resources which it was established have not of which have been uselessly exremained untouched amidst po- pended. litical vicissitudes. A turbulent These measures, Sire, which democracy, which has penetrated ought to insure success, your mineven into our laws, is substituted isters do not hesitate to propose, for legitimate power. It dis- feeling confident that justice will poses of the majority of elections be assisted by power. through the means of these jour Your Majesty's very humble nals and of societies constituted and
very faithful subjects. with similar views, it paralyzes as THE PRES. OF THE COUNCIL much as in its power the regular OF MINISTERS. exercise of the most essential MINISTER OF JUSTICE, prerogatives of the crown, that of MINISTER OF THE INTERIOR, dissolving the elective chamber. MINISTER OF MARINE, By that even the constitution of MINISTER OF FINANCES, the State is shaken. Your Ma MINISTER OF ECCLESIASTICAL jesty alone retains the power to
AFFAIRS, preserve and establish it
MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS. basis. The right as well as the duty to
Decrees of the King. assure its maintenance, is the inseparable attribute of sovereignty. Charles, by the grace of God, No Government upon earth would King of France and Navarre. be stable if it had not the right to To all those to whom these preprovide for its own security. This sents may come, greeting: Havlaw is pre-existent to all other ing resolved to prevent the recurlaws, because it is founded in the rence of measures, which have nature of things. These are, Sire, exercised a pernicious influence maxims which acknowledge the upon the late operations of the sanction of time and the avowal electorial colleges: wishing in of all civilians of Europe. consequence, to reform according
But these maxims have a more to the principles of the Constitudecided sanction, that of the con- tion, those rules of election of stitution itself - the 14th article which experience has taught the has invested in your Majesty a inconvenience,
we have recogsufficient power, not certainly to nised the necessity of employing change our institutions, but to con- the power in us vested, to provide solidate and render them immu- by acts emanating from us, for the table.
security of the State and the supImperious necessity permits you pression of every enterprise dino longer to defer the exercise of rected against the dignity of the this supreme power. The mo- Crown. For these reasons, our ment has arrived for a recurrence Council being heard, we have orto measures which are in accord- dered and we ordain :