Page:Treatise on Currency and Banking.djvu/19

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xi
PREFACE.

convulsions hitherto unknown in the commercial world, because extended over a wider field, would most certainly overtake us all. That the interests of a country aje best to be promoted by a stable currency, precisely as they are by a fixed standard of weights and measures, will hardly be disputed; and if it can be shown, that a defective, or mismanaged banking system, produces exactly the same results upon the pursuits of industry, and the property of individuals, as would the decrees of a despot, who should alter, at his pleasure, without any previous notice, as often as he thought it expedient, the weight of the pound, or the length of the yardstick, it is to be hoped that there is not a patriot in the land, who would hesitate to assist in the entire eradication of such a monstrous evil. That such is the effect of our present system, as it has been of late conducted, must be obvious to all who have closely examined its operations, and hence the necessity, before it is too late, of an application of the appropriate remedy.

The author of this treatise in offering it to the public, has no private ends to promote. He has been for twenty years a student of the science which he proposes to discuss, and has during that time in some reports to the senate of Pennsylvania, and in many detached publications, presented his views in relation to currency and banking; and if in the present volume there should appear here and there an expression familiar to the reader from former acquaintance, he may be assured that not a phrase has been employed as original, which is not his own property. He knows that in his opinions respecting the influence