The blind or mad politicians in whose hands are entrusted the administration of our government have at length determined—so at least their own party exponents of the press allege—to initiate war upon our countrymen of the South. Perhaps now, as we write, their murderous cannon are hurling the missiles which are to shed the blood of our brethren, or the merciless bayonet may be engaged in the work which must cause the very demons to rub their hands with glee.

If it be true that this is the determination of the government what is to be gained? Suppose that we are successful, and that after having imbued our hands in blood, Sumter is re-inforced and Charleston occupied—what then? We shall have gained a fort and lost a State, we shall have captured a city and irretrievably sacrificed the Union! The reverberations of the guns of Moultrie or Sumter will scarcely have ceased to echo before Virginia and we fear North Carolina and Tennessee will have wheeled into column with their Southern Sisters, and every hope of a re-union of all the States upon the old basis will have utterly died out of all men’s hearts.

There is a madness and a ruthlessness in the course which is attributed to the government which is astounding. It would seem as if it were bent upon the destruction instead of the preservation of the Union, and as if all wisdom and patriotism had departed from it, or had been forced to succumb to the demands of its infuriated partisan leaders. Moral courage, it does not now and never has seemed to possess—that masterful moral courage which dares to rise above clamor and passion and to save the Union by the proffer of a generous and satisfactory compromise rather than shiver it to atoms by drifting into war and rapine.

With its madness and ruthlessness there is allied a most despicable cowardliness; not merely the moral cowardice which crouches before the demands of an infuriated party, but that more obvious and to the common apprehension more ignoble cowardice which seeks to do a weak and wicked deed and to gain for it the appearance of magnaminity or even humanity. Conscious that a bold and unadulterated attempt to seize Charleston and to subject it to the rigors of war and subjugate it would evoke a universal shout of indignation and horror, the government seeks to mask this, its real purpose, by pretending that humanity requires them to succor the gallant Major ANDERSON and his troops, and that an unarmed vessel is to be sent to him with stores and that if it is not permitted peaceably to fulfil its errand it shall be done by force. The measure is a disingenuous feint. If there were any sincerity in the claim which they make to humanity the unarmed vessel would not have been accompanied by a powerful fleet of ships-of-war that had for weeks been concentrated in New York and carefully filled with every arm that military ingenuity could contrive. This unarmed vessel, it is well understood, is a mere decoy to draw the first fire from the people of the South, which act by the pre-determination of the government is to be the pretext for letting loose the horrors of war. It dare not itself fire the first shot or draw the first blood, and is now seeking by a mean artifice to transfer the odium of doing so to the Southern Confederacy.

But the people will not be so easily gulled. They know that if the government is so exceedingly alive to the claims of humanity on the score of Major ANDERSON, they could honorably relieve him from his sufferings by one single word, which they refuse to utter; nor do they fail to perceive that the plea of humanity which urges the provisioning of Fort Sumter would be tenfold more urgent against the sacrifice of the thousand lives at Charleston, and the tens of thousands elsewhere, in the awful strife which they provoke. The assumption of a regard for humanity and the actions which the government base upon it are a sham the most transparent, a mockery the most unsubstantial, an hypocrisy which is only more infamous than the low cunning with which it is commingled.

No intelligent man will be deceived by the plea, and if blood be shed it will be laid where it justly ought to be laid, at the door of an Administration which had not the courage to surrender an abstraction in order to preserve the peace and unity of the country, but was brave enough to dare to close its ear against all the persuasive ties of a common brotherhood, a common country, a common ancestry, a common religion and a common language, and by plunging the nation into civil war to demolish the noble fabric which our fathers founded.

If this result follows—and follow civil war it must—the memory of ABRAHAM LINCOLN and his infatuated advisers will only be preserved with that of other destroyers to be scorned and execrated. Better, infinitely better, had it been for him to have remained in his harmless insignificance at Springfield than so unfortunately for his country and for mankind to have risen to this bold, bad eminence. And if the historian who preserves the record of his fatal administration needs any motto descriptive of the President who destroyed ‘the institutions which he swore to protect, it will probably be some such an one as this:—”Here is the record of one who feared more to have it said that he deserted his party than that he ruined his country, who had a greater solicitude for his consistency as a partisan than for his wisdom as a Statesman or his courage and virtue as a patriot, and who destroyed by his weakness the fairest experiment of man in self government that the world ever witnessed.”