The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 3 [of 3]

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 277

small value as not well to bear the expence of
freight, may often be made cheaper in the country than they can
be imported; and the manufacture of such goods will be profitable
wherever there is a sufficient demand. The farmers in America produce
indeed a good deal of wool and flax; and none is exported, it is
all worked up; but it is in the way of domestic manufacture, for
the use of the family. The buying up quantities of wool and flax,
with the design to employ spinners, weavers, &c. and form great
establishments, producing quantities of linen and woollen goods for
sale, has been several times attempted in different provinces; but
those projects have generally failed, goods of equal value being
imported cheaper. And when the governments have been solicited to
support such schemes by encouragements, in money, or by imposing
duties on importation of such goods, it has been generally refused,
on this principle, that if the country is ripe for the manufacture,
it may be carried on by private persons to advantage; and if not,
it is a folly to think of forcing nature. Great establishments of
manufacture require great numbers of poor to do the work for small
wages; those poor are to be found in Europe, but will not be found
in America, till the lands are all taken up and cultivated, and
the excess of people, who cannot get land, want employment. The
manufacture of silk, they say, is natural in France, as that of
cloth in England, because each country produces in plenty the first
material: but if England will have a manufacture of silk as well as
that of cloth, and France of cloth as well as that of silk, these
unnatural operations must be supported by mutual prohibitions, or
high duties on the importation of each other's goods; by which means
the workmen are enabled to tax the home consumer by greater prices,
while the higher wages they receive makes them neither happier nor
richer, since they only drink more and work less. Therefore the
governments in America do nothing to encourage such projects. The
people, by this means, are not imposed on either by the merchant or
mechanic: if the merchant demands too much profit on imported shoes,
they buy of the shoe-maker; and if he asks too high a price, they
take them of the merchant: thus the two professions are checks on
each other. The shoemaker, however, has, on the whole, a considerable
profit upon his labour in America, beyond what he had in Europe, as
he can add to his price a

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Text Comparison with Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Page 1
Franklin's Defense of the Frontier 274 XVIII.
Page 23
[17] Grub-street: famous in English literature as the home of poor writers.
Page 36
So there being no copy,[27] but one pair of cases, and the Elegy likely to require all the letter, no one could help him.
Page 50
Denham, who was a friend of Hamilton's, thought he ought to be acquainted with it; so, when he arriv'd in England, which was soon after, partly from resentment and ill-will to Keith and Riddlesden, and partly from good-will to him, I waited on him, and gave him the letter.
Page 83
Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.
Page 87
Page 89
_Order_, too, with regard to places for things, papers, etc.
Page 91
Franklin's own suggestion that the scheme smacks of "foppery in morals" seems justified.
Page 92
--James ii.
Page 113
And I returned, "_Don't let me be mistaken; it was not for Christ's sake, but for your sake.
Page 130
[91] Vauxhall Gardens, once a popular and fashionable London resort, situated on the Thames above Lambeth.
Page 133
With these sentiments I have hazarded the few preceding pages, hoping they may afford hints which some time or other may be useful to a city I love, having lived many years in it very happily, and perhaps to some of our towns in America.
Page 138
But the governor refusing his assent to their bill (which included this with other sums granted for the use of the crown), unless a clause were inserted exempting the proprietary estate from bearing any part of the tax that would be necessary, the Assembly, tho' very desirous of making their grant to New England effectual, were at a loss how to accomplish it.
Page 139
When I was about to depart, the returns of waggons to be obtained were brought in, by which it appear'd that they amounted only to twenty-five, and not all of those were in serviceable condition.
Page 143
good Muscovado do.
Page 153
They behav'd very orderly, but looked pale and unhealthy, which made me suspect they were kept too much within doors, or not allow'd sufficient exercise.
Page 161
refus'd to pass, in compliance with his instructions.
Page 165
" "No matter," says he, "Mr.
Page 168
Bigelow's note in his edition of 1868.
Page 185
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