Front Page Titles (by Subject) OUTLINE OF THE NON-ADULT VALUE TABLE. - The Works of Jeremy Bentham, vol. 8 (Chrestomathia, Essays on Logic and Grammar, Tracts on Poor Laws, Tracts on Spanish Affairs)
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OUTLINE OF THE NON-ADULT VALUE TABLE. - Jeremy Bentham, The Works of Jeremy Bentham, vol. 8 (Chrestomathia, Essays on Logic and Grammar, Tracts on Poor Laws, Tracts on Spanish Affairs) 
The Works of Jeremy Bentham, published under the Superintendence of his Executor, John Bowring (Edinburgh: William Tait, 1838-1843). In 11 vols. Volume 8.
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OUTLINE OF THE NON-ADULT VALUE TABLE.
Contrived for the purpose of exhibiting (whenever the requisite data can be obtained) the pecuniary value, negative or positive, of the service of a pauper, or other individual (i. e. expenses and returns by labour on account of such individual) at and up to different years of age, from birth to twenty-one years complete.
DATES AND AGES.
Column 1. Day, month, and years of our Lord—twenty-one in number—taking a determinate period for the sake of illustration: viz. from 1st January, 1800, to 31st December, 1820, both inclusive. N.B. For some purposes it may be found of use to divide the whole term into half-yearly instead of yearly periods—Say, then, half-yearly.
Column 2. Correspondent column of half-years of age: viz. from birth to half a year old; from half a year to a year; and so on.
EXPENSES TO BE PROVIDED FOR, WHICH, AS FAR AS THEY GO, GIVE THE VALUE NEGATIVE.
Column 3. Expense of diet
Column 4. Ditto, clothing—materials.
Column 5. Ditto, ditto, making.
Column 6. Ditto, ditto, washing and mending.
Column 7. Individual’s share in the common and indivisible expenses of the establishment.
Column 8. Totals of expense (to be provided for before hand) during and for the several half-years commencing on the several days.
Column 9. Totals of expense from birth up to last days of the several ages; i. e. up to the ends of the several half-years commencing on the several days.
RETURNS TO BE EXPECTED, WHICH, AS FAR AS THEY GO, MAKE THE VALUE POSITIVE.
Column 10. Earnings for the several half-years commencing on the several days.
Column 11. Earnings from birth up to the ends of the several half-years, commencing on the several days.
BALANCES WITHOUT ALLOWANCE FOR DEATH OR SICKNESS.
Column 12. Balance of expenses and returns for the several half-years commencing on the several days; giving the value, whether positive or negative: negative, of course, for the first years; positive, if at all, not till after a number of years.
Column 13. Balance of expenses and returns, from birth up to the ends of the several half-years commencing on the several days; giving at first a negative value, then perhaps a positive value, as before.
Column 14.Present clear value of the service of a pauper (or other) hand; on the supposition of its being to be performed during the several half-years of age commencing on the several days:—Value, at first negative, then positive, as before. By present is meant on the day of the commencement of the term; viz. 1st Jan., 1800; supposing the future profit or loss were to be contracted for on that day.
Column 15. Present clear value of the whole period of service up to the ends of the several half-years commencing on the several days.
RATE OF MORTALITY ASSUMED FROM A STANDARD TABLE.
Column 16. Number of influents* into the respective half-years of age—(Number of influents into age stated, for the purpose of calculation, at 1000 or 10,000.)
Column 17. Number of decrementalists (effluents by death) dying, according to the standard-table, in the course of the several half-years of age.
Column 18. Number of remanents at the ends of the several half-years of age.
BALANCES AFTER ALLOWANCE FOR DEATH AND SICKNESS.
Column 19. Present value (deduced from the above standard-table) of the half-year’s service of a pauper taken at the several ages, and supposed to accrue at the end of the several half-years commencing on the several days;—allowance made for the chance of death, according to the foregoing standard-table.
Column 20. Present value of the whole period of service from birth up to the ends of the several half-years, commencing on the several days; allowance made for the chance of death, as before.
Column 21. Present value of the half-year’s service of a pauper, taken at the several ages, and supposed to accrue at the end of the several half-years commencing on the several days;—allowance made for the chance of death and sickness. (The chance of sickness taken from Dr Price.)
Column 22. Present value of the whole period of service, from birth up to the ends of the several half-years commencing on the several days;—allowance made for the chance of death and sickness, as before.
Column 23. Values, at the several successive ages of the whole of the period of service, remaining at these respective ages;—allowance made for death and sickness, as before.
Tables upon this plan, one for each sex, had actually been constructed under my direction; the numbers of the different ages being taken from the Censuses reported, as above, by Sir Frederick Eden, and the rate of mortality taken from Dr Halley’s Breslaw Table, which, on account of the roundness of the assumed number of influents (1000) seemed most convenient for the purpose. But (on examination,) the Census taken from Sir Frederick Eden being found inapplicable to this purpose, and Dr Halley’s table being found to labour under a very material error, not noticed by Dr Price, or any other of the many mathematicians who have made use of it, all the calculations that had been grounded on either of these bases have been given up; and it is to supply the deficiencies thus left that the information described in the blank Pauper-Population-Table is desired.
The value I take from the value of an adult employed at day-work on the lowest paid species of work, (agricultural,) on an average of the whole of South Britain; supposing the value to rise up to that pitch, by equal gradations, commencing at the earliest workable age. To get at the average in question I am ransacking, or causing to be ransacked, all the books I can lay hands on, in particular the Agricultural Reports. Your science, were I fortunate enough to have it within reach, might abridge the labour as well as secure the ground. You will recollect my question, to which you were kind enough to send me an answer, about the maximum of earnings, in a gradation formed by age.
What say you to this idea of forming a valuation of that part of the national live stock which has no feathers to it, and walks upon two legs? Is it new or old?—If old, can you tell me where it is to be found? I do not mean in the head of what West Indian, but in the tables of what mathematician or statisticalist? For strange it would be if the term value had less propriety when applied to the labour of the freeman than to that of the slave. Is an average child at his birth—supposing him certain of not living beyond the age of one-and-twenty years complete—worth more or less than nothing to those (himself of the number) who, during that period of legal, as well as natural, subjection, have the benefit of his capacity for labour at command? If more than nothing, at what age does he become so? Whether worth more or less than nothing, can he, by any, and what means, be made worth more? If worth more than nothing, how comes it that in an old-planted country, such as England, (whatever may be the case in a new planted one, such as America,) a child is, in every class without exception, regarded as a burden (I mean always in the pecuniary sense) to its parents? This deficiency in point of value, is it necessary and irremediable, or accidental and remediable? Is it absolute or relative only, (I mean with relation to the parents,) or partly absolute and partly relative? In other words, is it that a child has not, by the end of the period in question, produced so much as he has consumed; or that, though what he has produced be in itself considerably more than what he has consumed, yet, with reference to his parents, it is less, on account of their having expended more of what he has consumed, than they have received of what he has produced? In proposing to you these questions, I give you a clue, which, if it be worth following, will lead you to one of the main pillars of my plan;—an enigma which you, and, if you please, your correspondents, may amuse yourselves with, instead of a rebus, or a mathematical problem from the Ladies’ Diary.
My scale, you will observe, extends no farther than from the bottom to the summit of the hill of life: not that either the Table-Land at the top, or the descent on the other side, are undeserving of mensuration; but they do not lie within my present department; except the narrow slip at the very bottom, which belongs to Pauper-Land.
Amongst the different plans in relation to the poor, you lean, I observe, to that of Mr Ruggles: that being the case, I flatter myself with the pleasure of seeing you and your intelligent friend on my side. His plan is mine:—add only certain sources of profit—certain sources of saving—certain means of obtaining capital—not from the unwilling, but the willing—certain securities for good management—and certain other et cæteras, in which the welfare of the pauper community is not forgotten, and which, I hope, you will both approve of.
Some prefer home-provision in toto: but this will not do for those who have no home; in particular not for the destitute classes of children, for which see the table.
Others prefer working, without boarding or lodging, or working and boarding, without lodging, to working, boarding, and lodging: but this, again, will not do for those sons of indigence who have not where to lay their heads.—Look once more at the table.
Some are for doing everything by savings out of earnings; but this will not do very well where there can be no savings, still less where there can be no earnings.—Another glance, if you please, at the table.—Bating these cases, the recipe is good for the provident. Unfortunately, the bulk of labouring hands, especially the high-paid ones, is composed of the improvident. Providence may, by proper facilities, (for encouragement is scarcely necessary,) be rendered more general; but man must be new made, before it can be made universal.
Some think they annihilate the burden, when, from shoulders that cannot but be able to bear it, they shift it upon shoulders that may or may not be able to bear it; from shoulders more able, to shoulders less able; or from shoulders that are used to it, to shoulders that are not used to it: or, when instead of rate they write subscription:—like the old statute, which, to reconcile the farmer to a set of officers, who plundered him under the name of purveyors, ordered them to be called caterers. If this does with poor-rates, try it upon tithes, and call them offerings.
One gentleman (for whose probity of intention I would be security, though I have not the honour of his acquaintance) takes the burden from the shoulders of the man of property, and lays it upon those of the man of hard-pressed industry, who, unable to find subsistence among his friends and neighbours, is driven to hunt for it among strangers. An improvement this, at any rate, upon the existing laws; since a tax, so long as it is paid, is less heavy than a prohibition.
In some such ways as these we begin, all of us; and if we did not begin a little at random, how would anything ever be done?
Come, my Oedipus, here is another riddle for you: solve it, or by Apollo!—You remember the penalty for not solving riddles.—Rates are encroaching things. You, as well as another illustrious friend of mine, are, I think, for limiting them.—Limit them?—Agreed.—But how?—Not by a prohibitory act—a remedy which would neither be applied, nor, if applied, be effectual—not by a dead letter, but by a living body: a body which, to stay the plague, would, like Phineas, throw itself into the gap; yet not, like Curtius, be swallowed up in it.
When I speak of limitation, do not suppose that limitation would content me. My reverend friend, hurried away by the torrent of his own eloquence, drove beyond you, and let drop something about a spunge. I too have my spunge; but that a slow one, and not quite so rough a one. Mine goes, I promise you, into the fire, the instant you can show me that a single particle of necessity is deprived by it of relief.
One thing we shall not differ about;—the priority due to agriculture, and the necessary non-productiveness of every system of pauper-employment in which manufactures come in on any other footing than a supplemental one; to take off such part of the strength of an establishment, and such part of the time, as cannot be employed in producing food for it.
One thing I thank him for—(I should have said Mr Ruggles)—the confirming by his professional science a hope fondly nourished by my ignorance, that under such a system of management, as, if not already exemplified anywhere, might be framed at least for the purpose, employment might be found, even in agriculture, for almost every species of infirmity—for almost every modification of refuse labour. Stationary force being found by inanimate, ambulatory by animated Nature, how very little strength, and even how very little practice, is necessary in a guide!—and even supposing—what is not the case—there were nothing but girls for the plough, would not even a girl be better employed now and then at the plough, than spinning her health away, and earning twopence?
But away with party—away with exaggeration:—neither clothing nor lodging, any more than food, can be excluded from the catalogue of necessaries. In the principle of self-supply behold another of my sheet-anchors: and that, after giving two-thirds to agriculture, leaves one for manufactures. The principle of self-supply!—what say you to it?—Does the term explain itself?—Does the idea recommend itself?—Quit that—especially such part of it as looks to agriculture—and I divide your poor-houses for you—call them what you please—Houses of Industry—Schools of Industry—into two parcels:—one, the ill-managed, employed in ruining themselves; the other, the well-managed, in ruining their neighbours.—Assertions are not proofs; but announce the theorem—and another time, if it can be necessary, you shall have the demonstration.
This (you will say to yourself) is a sad farrago—but your miscellany, how superior soever to others in subject-matter and contents, has this in common with them—that half-formed ideas—so they have but matter in them—are not prohibited from presenting themselves. It is part of the character of your correspondents, to have more of substance about them than of form: and of the many recommendations which join in drawing so much good company to your conversatione, one, nor that the least, is the convenience of being admitted to it in boots. Mine (you will say) have hob-nails in them: for, somehow or other, the very idea of the person to whom I am addressing myself, has insensibly betrayed me into that sort of playful confidence—that épanchement, as I think the French call it—which I have always felt in his company. The opportunity of laying plans, before a sort of open committee, in an unripened state, and for the purpose of getting help for ripening them, before they have yet received the form they are to wear when presented at the bar of the public, by which they are to be tried, is a serious advantage; and as such, if you afford me any encouragement, I am not likely to be sparing in availing myself of it.
P.S.—For your next Number, or next but one, I don’t know but I may trouble you with a compressed Sketch of my two above-mentioned works, or one of them:—something between the work at large, and a mere Table of Contents. Imperfect it cannot but be, were it only for want of the data, the obtaining of which is the principal object of the trouble I am giving you at present.
[* ] The term decrementalists is derived from Dr Price’s expression, “Decrements of life,” which did not appear to exhibit the simple matter of fact in so clear and unambiguous a point of view. The terms influents and effluents (analogous to the mathematical terms fluxions and fluents) have been added, together with the term remanents, as being requisite to make up a nomenclature competent to the purpose.