But supposing once more that we were able to cut off every regiment that Britain can spare or hire, and to destroy every ship she can send - that we could beat off any other European power that would presume to intrude upon this continent: Yet, a republican form of government would neither suit the genius of the people, nor the extent of America.

In nothing is the wisdom of a legislator more conspicuous than in adapting his government to the genius, manners, disposition and other circumstances of the people with whom he is concerned. If this important point is overlooked, confusion will ensue; his system will sink into neglect and ruin. Whatever check or barriers may be interposed, nature will always surmount them, and finally prevail. It was chiefly by attention to this circumstance, that Lycurgus and Solon were so much celebrated; and that their respective republics rose afterwards to such eminence, and acquired such stability.

The Americans are properly Britons. They have the manners, habits, and ideas of Britons; and have been accustomed to a similar form of government. But Britons never could bear the extremes, either of monarchy or republicanism. Some of their Kings have aimed at despotism; but always failed. Repeated efforts have been made towards democracy, and they equally failed. Once indeed republicanism triumphed over the constitution; the despotism of one person ensued; both were finally expelled. The inhabitants of Great-Britain were quite anxious for the restoration of royalty in 1660, as they were for its expulsion in 1642, and for some succeeding years. If we may judge of future events by past transactions, in similar circumstances, this would most probably be the case if America, were a republican form of government adopted in our present ferment. After much blood was shed, those confusions would terminate in the despotism of some one successful adventurer; and should the Americans be so fortunate as to emancipate themselves from that thraldom, perhaps the whole would end in a limited monarchy, after shedding as much more blood. Limited monarchy is the form of government which is most favourable to liberty - which is best adapted to the genius and temper of Britons; although here and there among us a crack-brained zealot for democracy or absolute monarchy, may be sometimes found.

Besides the unsuitableness of the republican form to the genius of the people, America is too extensive for it. That form may do well enough for a single city, or small territory; but would be utterly improper for such a continent as this. America is too unwieldy for the feeble, dilatory administration of democracy. Rome had the most extensive dominions of any ancient republic. But it should be remembered, that very soon after the spirit of conquest carried the Romans beyond the limits that were proportioned to their constitution, they fell under a despotic yoke. A very few years had elapsed from the time of their conquering Greece and first entering Asia, till the battle of Pharsalia, where Julius Caesar put an end to the liberties of his country.~ Rev. Charles Inglis, The True Interest of America Impartially Stated, c. 1776

Rev. Inglis sounded out many vital themes that inevitably still resonate with those of us who have seen how poorly the republican experiment has turned out. Can large republics survive their own great extent and expansion without sacrificing republican government? The Antifederalists said that they could not, and the Loyalists cited this classical objection to large republics even earlier. The history of American expansion suggests that expansionism, as much as it was an agrarian and Jeffersonian dream to avert consolidation, is the engine of consolidation and the death of the federal and constitutional republic.

Our republicanism did indeed lead to a consolidated despotism in time, and with our abandonment of the English and British heritage of monarchy and the intimidation and expulsion of men such as Rev. Inglis we curiously forfeited any later remedy to the situation. Eliminating the possibility of a Loyalist reaction or a Restoration, Americans lost their chance to be protected from their government by their sovereign and inevitably deprived Americans of the necessary alternative political view.

What is also so marvelously clear, though, is that this leading spokesman for the Loyalist position in the colonies was holding to the moderate and constitutional position against the radicals of his day. While the Founders believed that they were simply defending the time-honoured habits and practices that they and their fathers had enjoyed, Rev. Inglis viewed the matter more clearly and correctly. Republicanism was as artificial and novel to British Americans as it had been to the English in the 1650s, and any system that could flourish only by the expulsion of a sizeable number of prominent and propertied families could not have been so very thoroughly in harmony with the history of a people.

Part of British American identity had to be rooted out and cast aside to make the American Republic function, and the most natural conservators of the English heritage and connection were driven from the country or pushed into political obscurity. If our country has now entered into the latter stages of a cultural dissolution and the decline of our English inheritance, we might trace some part of this cultural collapse to our initial, fratricidal war in which otherwise sober and sensible men invoked abstractions to break ties with their cousins and fellow Britons. If Canada and Britain today also suffer from this same cultural suicide, is it not because they have come to imitate the American model more and have held to their own traditions less and less?