Bolingbroke and His Circle: The Politics of Nostalgia in the by Isaac Kramnick


By Isaac Kramnick

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A pamphleteer who attacked the proposed lowering of interest in I75I wrote, "I may I think declare my opinion the more boldly because I find the famous Mr. Locke was of the same opinion ... ,,17 Locke's reasoning in I69I was equally appropriate in I75I, added the pamphleteer. Borrowers and lenders should make their own bargains, and civil laws should not interfere with the automatic workings of the laws of nature. Moreover, according to Locke's essay, the receivers of interest need have no shame.

And as a sharp clisJemper by reclaiming a man from intemperance may prolong his life, so it is not improbable but this public calamity that lieth so heavy on the oation may prevent its ruin . . " This response to the Bubble, in its despair, resentment, and call for reformation, suggests the attitude of the Tory intellectuals and especially of Bolingbroke during the following twenty years. THE NEW ECONOMY, CORRUPTION, AND THE MODEL OF ROME In Bolingbroke's Craftsman, the central organ of the Opposition, weekly articles no less severe than Bolingbroke's other published works battled the new order.

It shews as great corh: C':,aftsman) ruption of heart as any corruption these complain of, to insinuate, that all comparues are villruns. In 1735, The Daily Gazetteer, another Walpole sheet, defended the fund. holders who, it insisted, deserved their interest. It was absurd, the paper argued, to see the population as mere hewers of wood and drawers of water who maintained the proprietors of the funds at a life of luxury. " It is no small coincidence that. es. The article, a hymn to money and credit, descnbed the IDventIon of paper money and credit institutions as contributing to the general public welfare, not only the enrichment of a few.

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