so far as the tax was concerned, was unanswer-
able; but the sting of the tax act lay in its preamble: Rockingham
's declaratory act affirmed the power of parliament in all cases whatsoever; Townshend
's preamble declared the expediency of using that power to raise a very large colonial revenue.
Still collision was practically averted, for the Americans
, in their desire for peace, gave up the importation of tea. No revenue, therefore, was collected; and by resolute self-denial, the colonies escaped the mark of the brand which was to show whose property they were.
At this the king, against the opinion of Lord North and of the East India Company, directed that company itself to export tea to America
, and there to pay the duty, hoping that a low price would tempt Americans
to buy. But the colonists would not suffer the tea to be exposed for sale; the crown officers yielded to their unanimous resistance, every where except at Boston
, and there the tea was thrown overboard.
To close the port of Boston
and require an indemnity for the East India Company's loss, was the advice of Hutchinson
, and neither New York, nor Pennsylvania
, nor Virginia
would have supported a refusal to such a requisition; but the king and the Bedford
party seized the occasion to carry into effect part of their cherished system, and changed by act of parliament the charter granted by William and Mary to Massachusetts
The object of the change was the compression of popular power in favor of the prerogative.
The measure could bring no advantage to Britain and really had nothing to recommend it;