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[264] on the ground of its Fourierite and progressive tendencies. Its opposition to capital punishment, the freedom of its reviews, and the “hospitality it gave to every new thought,” gave offence to the religious press. Its tremendous hostility to the Mexican war excited the animosity of all office-holders and other patriots, including the president, who made a palpable allusion to the course of the Tribune in one of his messages. There was talk even of mobbing the office, at one of the war meetings in the Park. Its zeal in behalf of Irish repeal alienated the English residents, who naturally liked the “pluck” and independence of the Tribune. Its hostility to the slave power provoked the south, and all but destroyed its southern circulation. It offended bigots by giving Thomas Paine his due; it offended unbelievers by refusing to give him more.. Its opposition to the drama, as it is, called forth many a sneer from the papers who have the honor of the drama in their special keeping. The extreme American party abhorred its enmity to Nativeism. The extreme Irish party distrusted it, because in sentiment and feeling it was thoroughly Protestant. The extreme liberal party disliked its opposition to their views of marriage and divorce. In a word, if the course of the Tribune had been suggested by a desire to give the greatest offense to the greatest number, it could hardly have made more enemies than it did.

In the prospectus to the fifth volume, the editor seemed to anticipate a period of inky war.

‘Our conservatism,’ he said,

is not of that Chinese tenacity which insists that the bad must be cherished simply because it is old. We insist only that the old must be proved bad and never condemned merely because it is old; and that, even if defective, it should not be overthrown till something better has been provided to replace it. The extremes of blind, stubborn resistance to change, and rash, sweeping, convulsive innovation, are naturally allied, each paving the way for the other. The supple courtier, the wholesale flatterer of the Despot, and the humble servitor and bepraiser of the dear People, are not two distinct characters, but essentially the same. Thus believing, we, while we do not regard the judgment of any present majority as infallible, cannot attribute infallibility to any acts or institutes of a past generation, but look undoubtingly for successive improvements as Knowledge Virtue, Philanthropy, shall be more and more diffused among men.


Full of error and suffering as the world yet is, we cannot afford to reject

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