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282                             POLITICAL SCIENCE.
all important matters. For instance, if there is a threatening
of foreign war, the foreign secretary alone ought not to be
consulted, but as war affects the whole state, those who have
charge of its several interests and are nearest to the chief
executive officer, ought to know and are bound to take their
share of the responsibility. If this were not so the cabinet
would be a set of agents doing their work as upper clerks.
This would be the end of constitutional government, which
implies not only that each shall be responsible in his sphere,
but that all shall be advisers together, responsible together,
in all important transactions.
The number of ministers and apportionment of work are
subject to no rule, but depend on the peculiar interests and
constitution of each particular country, which will assign more
business to one department and less to another than the same
department would have among its neighbors. The technical
division into civil, military, finance, judicial, and police made
by some writers of the last age, besides being untenable in
itself as putting the judiciary where it does not belong, and
grouping business of several different kinds under police, is
in practice wholly untenable. Foreign affairs, military and
finance, will each demand a chief of department. Whether
the navy should be under a separate chief will depend on the
importance of this interest. Some states have a chief of
police coequal with the other great officers of state, but the
importance of this department is a sign of a bad constitution.
The business of education, of carrying the mails, of protecting
religion, have been all of them exalted into departments in
various countries. There ought also to be law officers who
hold confidential communication with the departments, and
one at least with the cabinet, as an adviser and agent in pub-
lic prosecutions.*
* The cabinets of modern European states consist of the ministers
placed over the district departments, besides whom there may be a
privy council. The number of ministers composing a cabinet varies
from six to ten. ^Thus in France we find ministers of foreign affairs,
of justice, of the interior, finance, war, the navy, public instruction;