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Blount Report: Affairs in Hawaii

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ing and responsible citizens to see that the present expenses of the 
Government are much beyond what the islands can pay and much 
higher than wise legislation and proper economic administration re- 
quire. But the difficulty of getting out of the old grooves, of scaling 
down salaries, and abolishing useless offices is hard to overcome. 
Nearly one-half of the population of the country have no voice in politi- 
cal affairs, unless exerted through corruption and bribery. The voting 
population is made up of several nationalities - Hawaiian, Portuguese, 
American, English, German, and others, the more intelligent and re- 
sponsible of these generally acting together sufficiently to exercise a 
beneficial influence on legislation and administration. But the palace 
patronage and influence are still considerable, costing the country more 
than it is able to pay and returning to the country no positive advan- 
Directly and indirectly, the palace probably costs the little kingdom 
$150,000 per year. A governor, at $5,000 a year, acting in harmony 
with the responsible men of the legislature, would be far better for 
the islands than the present monarchical Government. In truth, the 
monarchy here is an absurd anachronism. It has nothing on which it 
logically or legitimately stands. The feudal basis on which it once 
stood no longer existing, the monarchy now is only an impedient to 
good government - an obstruction to the prosperity and progress of the 
islands. Incapable of comprehending the principles of constitutional 
government, more likely to take the advice of unworthy counsel than 
of the more competent, the reigning Sovereign insists in dealing with 
what properly belongs to the legislature and to the ministers. Thus 
the palace is constantly open to superficial and irresponsible courtiers 
and to unprincipled adventurers of different nationalities. Instead of 
exercising a salutary influence on public affairs it is the center of mal- 
administration and of the most vicious kind of politics. It is now, 
and it has been for the last twenty years, and is always likely to be, a 
fruitful source of public demoralization.
It may be asked why do not the people of the islands at once reform 
this state of things ? There is a considerable number of intelligent, 
energetic, and excellent citizens, of the different nationalities, in pos- 
session of the elective franchise. They are largely Americanized in 
their opinions and manners. They are sympathetic with American 
institutions. This is so of the Portuguese, the Germans, more or less 
of the English, and of the native Hawaiians and half-whites, as well as 
of the most of those of American parentage. But these unaided and 
alone can not well make the necessary changes in the existing condition 
of things. As a crown colony of Great Britian, or a Territory of the 
United States, the government modifications could be made readily, and 
good administration of the laws secured. Destiny and the vast future 
interests of the United States in the Pacific clearly indicate who, at no 
distant day, must be responsible for the government of these islands. 
Under a territorial government they could be as easily governed as any 
of the existing Territories of the United States.
The men qualified are here to carry on good government, provided 
they have the support of the Government of the United States. Why 
not postpone American possession? Would it not be just as well for 
the United States to take the islands twenty-five years hence? Facts 
and obvious probabilities will answer both of these interrogations. 
Hawaii has reached the parting of the ways. She must now take the 
road which leads to Asia, or the other, which outlets her in America, 
gives her an American civilization and binds her to the care of American

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