Front Page Titles (by Subject) CHAPTER XXV.: On Colonies. - Letters to Mr. Malthus, and A Catechism of Political Economy
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CHAPTER XXV.: On Colonies. - Jean Baptiste Say, Letters to Mr. Malthus, and A Catechism of Political Economy 
Letters to Mr. Malthus, on Several Subjects of Political Economy, and on the Cause of the Stagnation of Commerce. To Which is added, A Catechism of Political Economy, or Familiar Conversations on the Manner in which Wealth is Produced, Distributed, and Consumed in Society, trans. John Richter (London: Sherwood, Neely, and Jones, 1821).
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What do you mean by Colonies?
Establishments which the inhabitants of one country form in another land, in order to live there more at ease.
Are there different kinds of colonies?
They may either be dependent or independent of the metropolis. The metropolis is the nation from which the colony went forth.
What do you mean by colonies dependent on the metropolis or mother country?
I understand those which are subject to the same government, and governed by laws which it imposes on them.
What effect has this dependence on the relative riches of the colonies and the metropolis?
That the metropolis can compel the colony to purchase from her every thing it may have occasion for; that this monopoly, or this exclusive privilege, enables the producers of the metropolis to make the colonists pay more for the merchandise than it is worth.
The metropolis, then, gains more from the colony than if she was independent?
Yes; but all that the tradesmen and merchants of the metropolis sell too dear, is paid for too dear by the colonial consumers. It is a value which has gone from the purse of one individual to that of another, both citizens or subjects of the same country. These values appear a great deal in the hands of those who gain them, because they are but few; and small to those who pay them, because they are divided amongst many individuals: but the loss is not the less to the colony, which is so much the poorer by it.
Are not the colonies indemnified in some other manner for the usurious gains which are made from them?
They make in their turn an usurious gain on the consumptions of the metropolis, which is not permitted to purchase from any other than them, the colonial products of which they are in want. On the one side and on the other it is a combination, or conspiracy of the producers against the consumers.
Are there any other inconveniencies attending independent colonies?
Their administration is corrupt and expensive, because it is superintended from too great a distance: and the metropolis is obliged to keep up garrisons, and military and naval forces, either to enable it to hold, or to defend them. And these expences increase the burthens, either of the people of the colony, or of those of the metropolis, without taking into account the wars which are always brought on by such an order of things.
Do these evils take place when the colonies are independent?
Never. They establish a government for themselves which costs them very little; they are no expence to the metropolis; and the one and the other, the metropolis and the colony, enjoy the advantages which two civilized nations derive from their reciprocal communications.