Enegls in Neue Rheinische Zeitung January 1849


Source: MECW Volume 8, p. 243;
Written: by Engels on January 9, 1849;
First published: in Neue Rheinische Zeitung No. 195, January 14, 1849.

Berne, January 9. The Cantonal Budget has now been so far discussed in the Government Council that it can be presented to the Great Council which is to assemble shortly. It conforms with other European budgets in also having a deficit, of 43,000 francs out of a total of about 5 million francs. Of these 5 million, about 800,000 francs are covered by revenue from state property, 1,800,000 by indirect taxes, the rest by tolls. Thus the population pays per head almost exactly 4 Swiss francs (1 taler 18 sgr.) in direct taxes, and about 3 1/2 francs in indirect taxes. If all the reductions proposed by Finance Director Stämpfli (leader of the local radicals) had gone through, the result would have been a surplus of 80,000 francs instead of a deficit. But this did not suit the liberal majority of the Government Council, who calmly leave it to the aristocrats to make the eternal complaint of the “disastrous financial situation” in order to lay the blame for this on the radical Stämpfli. In reality, the canton’s finances were brought into complete disorder and squandered by the notorious Neuhaus Government, and if order has been restored now, we have only Herr Stämpfli to thank for this.