War of the Rebellion: Serial 128 Page 0491 CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES.

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make the conscript act lie upon the stomachs of the people, but all in vain. They have explained it by all the laws of necessity and emergency, declared it constitution and patriotism, but still it was a bitter pill to a free people and could not be swallowed. Nothing but the strong arm (the tyrant's arm) of military power could enforce it, and well may the adherents of the Administration thimble when they look well may the adherents of the Administration tremble when they look . The Southern people are full of patriotism, and will continue in the armies of the Confederacy until liberties are fully secured, but upon the restoration of peace they will turn their footsteps homeward, and like a wild deluge overwhelm all who have sought to increase their burden. It is indeed to late to " charge the conscript acts now," but is this the apology of the Administration?

Even the conscript, upon whom it bears with all its severity, will sanction this; but he will not forget to ask another question-he will not forget to demand, who forged these chains for freemen?

Had Lincoln been armed with a conscript act when at the commencement of this war he called upon the State of Virginia, Kentucky, and Missouri for their quotas of troops to subdue the South he would not have been compelled to suffer the chagrin of disappointment upon the patriotic refusal of the Governors of those State; but he would have done then as President Davis can do now, in gross violation of every principle of State sovereignty, send foreign officers into the State, enroll, and transport beyond their jurisdiction every able-bodied man in them, thus totally disarming the State, at once destroying their constitutionally-established military departments, and depriving them of all means of self-defense. Can such an act be "constitutional? What is a State government worth when the very power sustains it is pulled from under it and held at the discretion of a foreign Executive? Are the Governors of these States and their cabinets mere puppets suspended upon the stage to amuse the women and children and the few non-combatant diseased men left by the operation of the conscript act? Let one of them deny it if he can-they have the name of Governor, but the President only can chuckle over the power. There is but one alternative for these who justify and declare the conscript act constitutional-they must also declare the State devoid of sovereignty. It is sidle to call a State sovereign and yet acknowledge the constitutional right of a foreign Executive to divest it at any moment if the power to execute its sovereign authority. If what I have written is true, the conscript act was an egregious, blunder, and even admitting the Administration to have been honest in its passage, it was still a blunder, and proved this, that the Administration party were sadly in want of statesmanship, or their sagacity never have permitted the emergency to come upon the country, which they claim as having necessitated the act. Had they prepared the people for a long war instead of perpetually sounding in their ears that the war would end in three, six, and finally twelve months (thus preparing them for peace instead of war), the Army would have been enlisted for the war, and the end of the first twelve months would not have found the Confederacy without an army, or compelled to resort to the violation of a Constitution but a year old to sustain it by conscription. The old system of drafting (which was not objectionable to the people) was amply sufficient to send out able-bodied men to the defense of the country, and the Executives of States possessed ample authority under the militia establishment of the several States to fill promptly every requisition made for troops by the President. But this no infringement of